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Watch The National’s Full Set At The Sydney Opera House

The-National-Press-PhotoThe National have been promoting their latest release, Trouble Will Find Me pretty hard since its release, and while on a run of dates in Australia, the band stopped by the Sydney Opera House to play a 26-song setlist that included their hits ”Demons” and “Sea Of Love,” along with an impressive five song encore. You can check out the full set below, and catch the band on their North American tour this spring, with stops at Austin City Limits, Shaky Knees Festival, NorthSide Festival. Continue reading ‘Watch The National’s Full Set At The Sydney Opera House’

Phoenix Perform “Chloroform” At Texas High School

phoenixIf we had bands like Phoenix popping up for surprise shows in my high school, I can tell you those four years would have been a lot different. Back in early October, the band played a secret show for 500 students at Anderson High School in Austin, Texas, while in town for Austin City Limits. Among their setlist for the evening was”Chloroform,” which you can watch a clip of here.

“It was incredible to see how the kids reacted,” frontman Thomas Mars explains, “The first three or four songs, they were really intimidated because there was a camera and a teacher. But it ended up getting really chaotic – in a good way. They invaded the stage. Those girls had no boundaries!”

The high school was first approached by Live From the Artists Den last spring. ”There’s no way we could do a [high school] tour,” said Maris, “but I’m glad we did one show like that – and that it’s on tape.”

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WATCH: Queens Of The Stone Age On ‘Austin City Limits’

queens of the stone ageWe may be a few days into the new year by now, but that didn’t stop Queens of the Stone Age from celebrating with their debut on Austin City Limits this past Saturday night. In honor of the show’s 39th season, the band played hits such as “No One Knows” off 2002′s Songs for the Deaf, and “My God Is The Sun,” off their latest success, …Like Clockwork, for an expanded one hour set time.

You can check out their performance below, and catch the band during their late January/early February US dates, before they head to Australia and New Zealand this March. Continue reading ‘WATCH: Queens Of The Stone Age On ‘Austin City Limits’’

Discourse & Dischord

The Good

Selena Gomez delivers Fifty Shades of Grey parody

Ever since Fifty Shades of Grey hit the bookshelves there’s been an outbreak of heaving bosoms across the country. And now you can add Selena Gomez to the list of the afflicted. The “Love You Like A Love Song” singer did a parody called “Fifty Shades of Blue” for Funny or Die. Let it sweep you away.

Mick Jagger hosts SNL

Mick Jagger proved that if you start him up he’ll never stop. The Rolling Stones frontman had double duty for the season finale of Saturday Night Live—hosting the show and performing with the Foo Fighters and Arcade Fire. The only thing he backed away from was the karaoke machine, as evidenced by this sketch.

The Bad

Robin Gibb dies

This week Robin Gibb of the Bee Gees passed away after a battle with colon cancer, leaving his older brother Barry as the only remaining member of the group. Gibb, along with Barry and twin brother Maurice, penned perennial hits like “Stayin’ Alive,” “How Deep Is Your Love” and “More Than A Woman.” Their airtight, three-part harmonies became one of the most defining sounds of the ‘70s. Barry created the video tribute below for his brother. R.I.P.

“Call Me Maybe” says everyone, ever

Carly Rae Jepson’s bubbly hit, “Call Me Maybe,” has inspired THE ENTIRE UNIVERSE to cover it. Yes, even a guy in a gimp mask. Watch the parade of the untalented yet unflaggingly enthusiastic masses below.

The Ugly

Team Breezy gets sleazy

Not everyone was thrilled with Chris Brown’s performance at the Billboard Music Awards on Sunday. Pink and her husband Carey Hart pinged the singer for lip-syncing and ripping off his motocross-inspired performance from one of hers. But when John Legend’s fiancée, model Chrissy Tiegen, dared to opine that Brown should stick to dancing all hell broke loose. Team Breezy barraged the model with so many death threats that Brown himself had to step in. Read all about it here.

Usher tears up at custody hearing

Usher and his ex-wife Tameka Foster are embroiled in an ugly custody dispute over their two sons, and this week the singer broke down in tears on the stand as he was questioned about his ability to parent. Oh, and his ability to bang bridesmaids. Read about it here.


Q&A With Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros

In the true spirit of indie music, Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros are winning fans over one show at a time with their organic sound,  full of improvisation and unique surprises at every turn. Unlike the typical indie pop band, Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros’ 10 official members all crowd the stage with whatever instrument, drum or object they can play or beat on. The result is music brimming with emotion, so it’s no surprise the band is staying busy on the summer festival circuit as well as earning placements in TV commercials and film trailers (such for the Ford Fiesta as well as the trailer for the movie Cyrus). Guitarist and vocalist Christian Letts got in touch with OurStage to offer his own take on the band’s many projects.

OS: So, who is Edward Sharpe?

CL: Edward Sharpe is everybody. Originally he was a character in a novel Alex was writing. In the book, he was a character that was sent from heaven to save the world, but he keeps getting distracted and falling in love with girls along the way. He doesn’t ever get around to doing it. I don’t think the novel’s even finished. It’s something that Alex has been working on for years and years.

OS: When performing “Home” live, there’s almost always a different monologue toward the end of the song. Do you determine these topics before you go onstage, or is it strictly improv?

CL: Definitely not. It’s not just even “Home”. Every song we play is different every night. We rarely play anything the same twice. It makes it really fun to play, you don’t ever really get bored of playing songs. Sometimes people ask us about that. “Does it get monotonous playing the same song over and over again?” It actually really doesn’t because of that. It’s really free flowing, you know? We really never know what’s going to happen in that breakdown. We just kind of follow along, and we ride it out, you know?

OS: Yeah it definitely seems like you’re all usually just going with the flow and having fun. Was there a specific time onstage that you really noticed was set apart from the rest?

CL: There are moments all the time that feel different, and like we’re growing as a band. We’re getting better and better at playing with each other. It’s always been really good, and it’s cool that it keeps going. We’re always pushing each other to become a better unit. It’s not even really pushing. It just naturally happens with us. Even at acoustic radio shows we do, it’s really cool to see an acoustic version of things grow. It’s really beautiful. I’ll be like “Holy shit man, this is great tonight, and I thought it was great before.” It happens a lot, but it’s hard to pinpoint one time though because there’s been a bunch of them.

OS: So, it’s tough to pick out just one because you guys just keep getting better and better?

CL: Definitely, it’s great man. It just keeps growing. Sometimes there are these happy accidents that happen, where the whole band will cut out. Well, there was one point I remember in Williamsburg. On one song, the band dropped out and it was just us singing one part. It was so hypnotic even when I was singing, I just really felt like I was meditating. We all talk about how special that felt. We’ve added that to how we play the song, and it’s even changed more since then. So that’s one moment I really remember.

OS: You released some vinyl’s surrounding Up From Below last year, which had limited pressings. What was the purpose of these releases?

CL: People like collecting vinyl. We’ve actually had to keep ordering more. I really like listening to the album on vinyl, because there’s something really special about the way it sounds. Also, we recorded the takes in analog and everything. It’s just a different experience than on the CD.

OS: Last year you released a couple of music videos from a “12-part musical,” right?

CL: Yeah, we’re trying to eventually finish a video, or short film basically, for each song on the album, and they’ll all go together and make sense in the end. Another one should be coming up pretty soon, but I don’t really know how long it’s going to take. But, eventually it will all be done.

OS: Was there any sort of inspiration for the plot or the visuals in these short films?

CL: Alex had this idea, and we’re all just like “Wow, that’s fucking great.” We were all at his friend’s house and just started brainstorming and kicking around things. We’re really fortunate to have a bunch of very talented friends around us that are great at whatever it is they do. It all kind of stayed within the family of  buddies getting together and shooting stuff. You don’t know how everything is going to be when it’s done. You’re there when it’s being shot, but when it was finished, we all got together and watched the first video. We were like “Holy shit, this looks so good!”

OS: You guys are a big festival band during the summers, but there’s a big difference between club and festival dates. So, how does the connection with the crowd differ between these?

CL: Well, it changes from festival to festival too. It’s not something you force. However the experience is, you just sort of let it happen. Whenever you try to force anything, it doesn’t feel very natural. We’ve had festivals where I’ve been like “God, this whole crowd, I feel like we’re all in this one unit right now.”  I remember early on, when I was in other bands, we’d try to force a connection. For this one, it’s not something I ever feel like I’m trying to force. It feels like I’m in the ocean rolling with it. Sometimes there’re really calm shows, even at venues. At clubs there will be mellow shows. There are other ones where it’s just so hyped, and the sweatiest shit and walls are dripping with water because everyone is sweating. I really like the sweaty nights man, they’re a lot of fun. Nothing is really predetermined before going onstage, other than to just have fun. One thing we agree on is to just enjoy ourselves.

OS: So, do you find yourselves anywhere in particular after shows when you’re just kind of hanging out?

CL: We’ll go out to a bar afterward and have a couple drinks maybe. Sometimes, we’ll just go back to the bus and chill and jam. There are so many people. It’s funny. We’ll all wander off in different directions and somehow usually end up at the same place. Everybody just sort of trickles in. It’s really interesting actually. “How did they know we were here?” With 10 people, if you want to do something, sometimes you can’t wait for everyone to rally. Otherwise you’re going to miss out.

End your summer with a Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros as they close of their festival circuit/ fall tour!

9/1- Wow Hall, Eugene, OR

9/2- Wonder Ballroom, Portland, OR

9/3- Wonder Ballroom, Portland, OR

9/4- Bumbershoot Festival, Seattle, WA

9/25- Virgin Mobile FreeFest, Columbia, MD

10/7- Rialto Theatre, Tucson, AZ

10/9- Warehouse Live, Houston, TX

10/10- Austin City Limites Festival, Austin, TX

10/11- The Collective, Shreveport, LA

10/12- The Lyric Oxford, Oxford, MS

Punk On The Rocks: Punk On The Road

Whether the month of August is traditionally rain-soaked or dry as a desert in your hometown, it was most likely a drought month in terms of big name tours. For punk rockers who are thirsty for live music, fear not: The beginning of September marks the start of the fall touring season deluge. This week, Punk on the Rocks has the scoop on the fall tours you can’t miss.
Veteran punks Social Distortion have a string of US dates lined up with Lucero and English folk-punker Frank Turner. The tour starts October 14th in Utah and ends November 23rd in Arizona. Click here for dates.

The Street Dogs : Photo by Brian Sheffield

Boston’s Street Dogs will be hitting the road starting September 7th in support of their self-titled sixth full length (out September 3rd on Hellcat Records). The band will be covering most of the continental US and bringing Devil’s Brigade, Flatfoot 56 and Continental along with them. Click here for dates. If you haven’t seen the Street Dogs live, check out the review of last year’s “Wreck The Halls” show to find out what you’ve been missing.

Street Dogs won’t be the only Boston band on the road—Currently on tour in Europe, Big D & The Kids Table will be returning to the US starting September 24th for a brief tour of the northeast US, culminating in the band’s annual Halloween show at Boston’s Paradise Rock Club. Click here for dates.

The Gaslight Anthem : Photo by Ashley Maile

New Jersey’s The Gaslight Anthem have got a massive touring schedule lined up for the fall. After playing the Reading and Leeds Festival in the UK, the band will wind through the US and Canada starting September 1st. They will return to Europe in late October, where they will remain until late November. The Reading and Leeds Festival appearance will be followed up with stops at Austin City Limits and The Great Allentown Fair, where the band will be opening for Weezer. Click here for dates.

The Swingin’ Utters have expanded their current US tour to include several September dates with The Copyrights and Have Nots and a three-night Texas run with Krum Bums in October. The band will spend November criss-crossing Europe. Click here for dates.

The Misfits (or what’s left of them) will be going in the opposite direction, starting their European tour in September and returning to the States in mid-October for a US tour that is scheduled to last until early December. For those of you hoping to catch the Misfits on Halloween, the closest you’re going to get is their October 30th show in Toledo, OH. While no one is going to begrudge the band some down time,  it’s a mystery as to why they would take off the one day a year that most cries out for a Misfits show. Oh well, maybe next year. Click here for dates.

Who are you looking forward to seeing this fall? Let us know in the comments!

Discourse & Dischord

The Good

Greyson Chance signs to Interscope

Bieber, beware! There’s a new kid on the block, a tween heartthrob by the name of Greyson Chance whose got the same shaggy mop and babyface as you, but with even more youth. That’s right, gramps. Chance, a 12 year-old musical prodigy became an Internet sensation thanks to a YouTube clip of him performing Lady Gaga’s “Paparazzi” on piano to a rapt audience of 6th grade girls. Looks like Gaga’s own label, Interscope, nabbed Chance. Whether they planted him on YouTube to drum up interest or stumbled upon him like everyone else remains to be seen. One thing’s for certain, kid’s got talent. Watch him killing it below.

Joy Division honored with children’s symphony

To commemorate the 30-year anniversary of Ian Curtis’ death, schoolchildren from the singer’s hometown of Macclesfield, England will perform songs from the Joy Division canon with help from the Northern Chamber Orchestra. The concert is slated to take place from July 29th – Aug 7th.

The Bad

Ronnie James Dio dies


If you’re a child of the ‘80s or a vintage metal afficionado, Ronnie James Dio needs no introduction. For those who aren’t familiar with the name, Dio was 5’4” inches of pure metal fury, lending his powerhouse vocals to bands such as Rainbow, Black Sabbath and (of course) Dio. The singer and songwriter succumbed to stomach cancer this week at the age of 67. R.I.P.

Ryan Adams releases sci-fi metal-ish concept album ORION

Ryan Adams

Back in March prolific songwriter/perpetual critic provoker Ryan Adams (or Mr. Mandy Moore) promised us an album of “Most Legit METAL.” Well, it’s happening. Except, it’s not really metal, but more “just really, really fast country with screaming and crap,” says Adams. Today you can pre-order the screaming and crap (entitled Orion) online on Adams’ site. We’ve yet to be disappointed by any of Adam’s musical outpourings. Will Orion be a first? We’ll consult our astrological charts and get back to you.

The Ugly

Black Keys get physical in “Tighten Up” video

What happens when two young boys compete for the attention of a cute girl on the playground? Or when two grown men go after that girl’s equally comely mother? Blood, tears, donuts and a lot of hilarity. Enjoy.


Fine Tunings: Sara Hickman, Proud Texan

OSBlog02_FineTunings_SaraHickmanThe Lone Star State has always been a musical melting pot. Janis Joplin, Buddy Holly, Kenny Rogers, Waylon Jennings, Pantera and Norah Jones have all made their home there. And who could forget the Texan roots of the Dixie Chicks, who were famously embarrassed by a certain president.

Texas has a Musician’s Museum, a Music Hall of Fame and, of course, the long-running Austin City Limits television show and music festival. Austin prides itself on being the self-proclaimed “Live Music Capital of the World.” But soon Texas will have an independent musician named Sara Hickman working to ensure that Texas remains on the musical map. Continue reading ‘Fine Tunings: Sara Hickman, Proud Texan’



Home of: Buddy Holly, George W. Bush, Roy Orbison, Howard Hughes, Tommy Lee Jones, Janis Joplin, Selena Quintanilla-Pérez, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Destiny’s Child, Dixie Chicks, At The Drive-In

Fun Facts: State flower; bluebonnet, state song; “Texas, Our Texas,” state insect; Monarch butterfly

The Venues: Everything is bigger in Texas, and music festivals are no exception. Austin hosts two of the biggest: Austin City Limits and South By Southwest.

Now in it’s 8th year, Austin City Limits features Kings of Leon, Medeski, Martin & Wood, Coheed & Cambria, Dave Matthews Band, Mos Def, Thievery Corporation, Pearl Jam, Ben Harper And Relentless7, Sonic Youth, Passion Pit and more from October 2nd to October4th in Austin’s Zilker Park, with a slew of big name after parties at the city’s many venues. If you’ve got tickets to the sold out show, be sure to check out OurStage artists The Airborne Toxic Event and Here We Go Magic.

What began as a simple music festival in 1987 has become one of the biggest music, film and interactive conferences in the world. South By Southwest (SXSW) helped launch the careers of artists like Amy Winehouse, The White Stripes, The Strokes and Lilly Allen, and features music’s current stars along with the hottest undiscovered acts. The next SXSW conference will run from March 12th to March 21st, with the music conference running from March 17th until the 21st.

Lined with quality live music venues, the legendary 6th Street has done a lot to help Austin earn the moniker “The Live Music Capital of the World.” Emo’s, located just off of 6th Street, is an Austin favorite for both locals and festival-goers because of its indoor and outdoor stages.

The Music:

BWQQUNEDCMCD-320x240White Rhino – Austin locals White Rhino play heavy, psychedelic rock that falls somewhere between Queens of the Stone Age and Motörhead. “Rhodesia” from their self-titled debut album is about as rock and roll as it gets. The band is currently touring around the Southwestern United State, including a stop at Emo’s with Monotonix on September 25th.

l_41a554cf3d144505bc3b9df999a66a6bOso Closo – Oso Closo’s theatrical, jazz-influenced progressive rock combines piano, string arrangements and dueling guitars. Their theatrics landed them a part in last summer’s production of Tommy at the Dallas Theater Center. Check out “Straight Out The Gate” to see why Jim Heath (The Reverend Horton Heat) and Bryce Avery (The Rocket Summer) count themselves as fans. The band is currently on tour promoting the release of their second album Today Is Beauty’s Birthday.

UMCMSIEMMXJN-320x240El Tule – Relative newcomers to OurStage, El Tule have already landed themselves a Top 10 finish in the July Latin Channel and a feature on AOL Music. “La Sirena” showcases the band’s combination of Latin, Afro-Cuban, Rock and Reggae music. El Tule’s music will be featured in the soundtrack of the upcoming film Pepe & Santo vs. America starring noted Mexican actor Rafael Amaya.

m_cbb78c5334fc41ffa077bde2edd2257bYou’re Done For – Starting a pop punk band in a city where rock and metal rule the music scene might not seem like the best idea, but that’s what the members You’re Done For did. Their plan seems to be working: the band completed a Southwest tour in 2009, picking up new fans along the way. Check out “Everybody is Listening” from their EP Shhh…Everyboy’s Listening. If you like what you hear, let them know! Your basement could be the next stop on their House Party Tour.

Check out these acts and other great Texas artists in the playlist below!

Who are your favorite OurStage Texans? Where do you like to see live music in Texas? Let us know in the comments!


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