Thursday, November 13, 2008

Open Mics & Matisyahu

Gearing up for the 92Y Open Mic, and I'm just nervous -- half that nobody's going to come, and half that it will be mobbed. We actually did a really amazing open mic last year in the dead of winter -- 10 people showed up, and it turned into a tremendous verbal jam session between poems -- but the fact that Actual Amazing Author and Legendary Musician are both showing up makes me fret. Just praying.

matisyahu speaksSpeaking of praying: my interview with Matisyahu is up:

If the songs on "Shattered" veer in directions that are surprising to the artist's existing fans, "Light" abandons the path entirely. The first track, "Master of the Field," was released as a free download on Matisyahu's Web site. It treads on ground both familiar and new, with classic Chasidic (and, yes, Lubavitch) metaphors -- the titular master is a reference to the Jewish month of Elul, when the king comes out to greet his subjects on their territory. Musically, it borrows from the confines of his previous work (reggae-tinted keyboards, infectious pop hooks, a beatboxed transitional bridge) but a little before the two-minute mark, the song explodes into a totally different vein. It's not pop music, it's not experimental, but it manages to retain its catchiness while paring down to little more than a drum-and-bass beatbox and a chanted chorus.


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