Wednesday, March 6, 2013

The Power of Live Performance

I don't know about you, but I am a big fan of watching live performances on YouTube. Now, I'm not talking about the videos your aunt took at the Keith Urban concert with her mid-2000s cell phone. I'm talking about videos taken with good equipment (both audio and visual), displaying the talent bands have when performing live. I think it's sad sometimes, when the only version of music someone wants to listen to is the edited and multi-tracked studio version. I love the raw emotional power of a solid live performance. Here are some of my favorite live performance videos on YouTube right now:

Shakey Graves- Roll the Bones

-This guy is groovy, dirty, and smooth. Talented guitars, cool rhythms, and a soulful voice make for an awesome performance.

Cowboy and Indian- Weightlessness

-This band (and baby) have a clean and honest sound that makes my heart ache for summer days.

tUnE-yArDs- NPR Tiny Desk Concert

-tUnE-yArDs has the most unique sound that I've heard in a while. Merrill, the head of the group, is an absolute genius of looped beats, complex melodies, and interesting songs. She puts on by far the best live show I've seen in a long time.

Thursday, February 28, 2013

News that has EVERYTHING to do with the integrity of your soul

PSA: As many of you may know, the Northwest is great. If this is news to you, quit being a dweeb.

Now then, my dear appreciators of sonic tingles and elusive hairy creatures alike,

You might also be aware that 2013's Sasquatch Festival sold out unbelievably quickly. Seriously - ninety minutes and it was dry. Not surprising.  I hope many of those four day passes are now under ownership of you lovely Lutes, but if not, here are some upcoming shows on my wish list that might cream your peaches as well.

Alabama Shakes: March 3 @ Paramount Theatre, Seattle
Passion Pit: March 5 @ the Paramount
Flogging Molly: March 12 @ Paramount
Frightened Rabbits: March 8 @ Showbox at the Market, Seattle
Phoenix: March 29 @ Paramount
Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds: April 7 @ Paramount
Bad Religion (with Against Me! and Polar Bear Club): April 15 @ Showbox SoDo
Bat For Lashes: April 16 @ Showbox at the Market
Dr. Dog and Dawes: April 26th @ Showbox at the Market
Local Natives: April 25 @ Crystal Ballroom, Portland; April 26 and 29 @ the Neptune, Seattle; April 27th @ Commodore Theatre, Vancouver; April 28 @ WWU in Bellingham (kick ass!)
Crystal Castles: April 30th @ Moore Theatre, Seattle
Bonobo: May 1 @ Showbox at the Market
The Lonely Forest: May 4 @ The Crocodile, Seattle
Cave Singers: May 4 @ Showbox at Market
Cloud Cult: May 6 @ the Neptune Theatre, Seattle
The Black Angels: May 13 @ Neptune
Of Monsters and Men: May 14 @ the Paramount Theatre
Cold War Kids: May 16 @ the Neptune
Stornaway: May 20th @ the Crocodile, Seattle
Foals: May 31 @ the Neptune

There's a starting point, at least.


Nathaniel - Promotions Director

Thursday, November 29, 2012

December concerts in Seattle

Dearest music admirers,

This is the time of the season where your mental space gets devoured by looming deadlines, projects, and finals. A perpetual state of somnambulism doesn't help free up your mind either. So just in case you may be unaware of some upcoming winter concerts in the Seattle area, here are some that appear to be tickling my fancies:

December 1: Califone @ The Crocodile, Seattle
December 1: Vendetta Red @ El Corazon, Seattle
December 1: Mt. St. Helens Vietnam Band @ The Vera Project, Seattle
December 6: Charles Bradley and the Menahan Street Band @ Neumos (21+), Seattle
December 7: The Cave Singers @ Showbox at the Market, Seattle
December 7: Allen Stone @ The Paramount Theater, Seattle
December 7: Mt. St. Helens Vietnam Band @ Chop Suey, Seattle
December 8: Sufjan Stevens @ Neptune Theater, Seattle
December 15: David Bazan @ Neptune Theater, Seattle
December 16: Icarus the Owl @ El Corazon, Seattle
December 16: Sunn O))) @ Neptune Theater, Seattle
December 17: The Mountain Goats @ Showbox at the Market, Seattle
December 20-21: Louis CK Live @ The Paramount Theater, Seattle
December 23: Dweezil Zappa Plays Zappa @ Neptune Theater, Seattle
December 29: Larry and His Flask @ El Corazon, Seattle

Carry on bravely,

Nathaniel Youmans
LASR Promotions Director

Sunday, November 11, 2012

New Mamiffer/Pyramids release haunts October

Hydra Head Records has just released what will be their last new record on the label. The New Mexico
based label, whose signed artists present a gloomy mix of dark, brooding drone music and sprawling
ambient sound, is closing up shop after nearly twenty years, says label founder Aaron Turner (founding
member of Isis and member of Mamiffer and Jodis). Their final release will be the 12” split between
Mamiffer (from Seattle) and Pyramids (from Texas) that came out 16 October. I like to think of
Mamiffer, comprised of pianist Faith Coloccia and guitarist Aaron Turner, as the soundtrack to the rainy season in the Pacific Northwest. Their music blends gorgeous piano over dark currents of static and
electronic drone, while Turner’s guitar build up a wall of fog-like sound. I’m never entirely sure why, but
their last album Hirror Eniffer has been played on my ipod more than any other album, and their new
split with Pyramids is the perfect ambient sound to accompany this fall. Pyramids delivers 10+ minute
tracks in some cryptic, instrumental dialect of ghosts. Both are subtle but powerful, alien but comforting
sounds that I would recommend to any appreciators of instrumental music. You can listen to their new
release here:

-Nathaniel Youmans, LASR Promotions Director

First Aid Kit, 10/20/12

GODDESSES. That’s probably the only way to really sum up First Aid Kit. I guess a few other words could do the job as well: exquisite, beautiful, inspired. I went to see them a few weekends ago (October 20th) at the Neptune in Seattle. Laura Gibson, a sweet lil’ Portlander, opened for the Swedish sisters.
Laura played an assortment of songs from her new and past albums. She has a sweet, bright voice which was accompanied by lilting harmonies, rhythmic drums, and simple guitar picking. Glorious. The only thing that I felt detracted from the performance was the way she opened every song with a description of what the listener would be hearing and the context in which she wrote that particular song. I like when bands shed light on one or two of their compositions, but I think it’s also quite nice to interpret a song for what it is without a backstory. I guess I could’ve just covered my ears for that part. That wouldn’t have been too obnoxious, right?
Then came the main event: FIRST AID KIT. This cool, super-Scandinavian pan-flute music started playing, the lights dimmed, and finally the Swedish super-duet emerged. Their flowy, paisley, floor length dresses followed them as they strutted to the front of the floor where they grabbed their instruments and started. Ahhhh loved every minute of it. If their show had a recipe it would be: 2 beautiful voices & souls, a dash of theatricality, 1 cup of dead-on harmony, a pinch of Swedishness, and 3 tears (produced by me). My favorite part of the night was when they unplugged, came to the front of stage, and played Ghost Town, a song from an old album. The neck pain the next day was so worth it. Another highlight was their cover of America, originally by Simon and Garfunkel. Inspired.
It was a great night, one that I won’t soon forget. Even though my friends and I didn’t get to talk in person with the Johanna and Klara after the show, I know my day will come. My consolation is that during their performance, I truly believe that both of the sisters made extended eye contact with me. Yes, yes, probably wishful thinking. But I swear on all of the beautiful countries in Scandinavia, they looked at me. With my toothy grin and camera around my neck, they stared into my soul. They knew what I wanted to tell them, they knew that I was telepathically communicating the phrase: You are goddesses. You are wonderful.  And that’s all they (and you) need to know.

-Olivia Ash, LASR Personnel Director

Welcome To Fall: A Playlist

Are you settling into the cool and cozy days of fall? If you're finding yourself holed up in a coffee shop, here's a fall playlist to enjoy as you hit the books, write morose poetry, or paint pictures of your cat.

-Angela Shier, LASR Web and Technology Director

Follow this link to listen to the playlist on 8tracks.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Welcome to LASR!

Hi there, and welcome. I'm glad you've stopped by. If this is your first time hearing of LASR, I would like to personally say hello. My name is Emily, and I'm the General Manager of Lute Air Student Radio. We are the student radio station at Pacific Lutheran University. I could write paragraph after paragraph about how wonderful we are and how cool we are, but I don't want to waste your precious time. Below, I've detailed the information that LASR would relay to you if you just so happened to sit down at each others table during a speed dating event. Enjoy.

You: Hi, my name is Awesome Visitor.  

LASR: I'm Lute Air Student Radio. That's a great hairstyle you have going on.

You: (blushing) Thank you. You're very kind. What do you do?

LASR: Well, I play shows by PLU students. I've got a lot going on: pop music, rock music, ethnic music, cat music-- really anything! Anyone can be involved.

You: Wow, that sounds amazing. You might be the coolest station I've ever met.

LASR: Thanks! I have a lot of fun.

You: If you're so cool, what are you doing here?

LASR: Well, I wanted to branch out a little. I decided to start this blog so that the awesome people involved with LASR could share their love of music with everyone. The DJs and LASR staff all post stuff about their shows, concerts in the area, music they're listening to-- really anything!

You: Oh man, you just keep getting better and better.

LASR: I know, right?

You: What?

LASR: What?

You: Um....well I think you're pretty great. How can I reach you again?

LASR: You can tune into LASR anytime! Just go to and click to listen. It'll open up in your iTunes and you'll be jamming in no time. 

I hope you enjoy your stay here at the LASR blog, and that you visit often! Leave us suggestions in comments! You can also email us at

We love you.

Emily Bishop
Lute Air Student Radio General Manager