The Oberlin Review

Firecracker MC Young Unique Sets Sparks in ‘Sco

Linus Ignatius

March 11, 2011

Filed under ARTS, Music

Last Friday, March 4, brought a much-anticipated act to the ’Sco: the young, firecracker emcee Dominique Young Unique. Spitting rhymes sharp as daggers in her baby-doll voice to a densely packed crowd, the Tampa Bay rapper practically transformed the space into a city nightclub, turning the Dionysus Disco into an orgiastic, bacchanalian celebration of our youth. The opening acts — Pepepiano and Teengirl Fantasy — eased the growing crowd into a sensual trance. The night began as Pepepiano hit the stage, filling up the ’Sco with kaleidoscopic, melty electronica, engineered for loosening up the joints. Soon after, Teengirl Fantasy took over, imbuing the swirling soundscape with a heavy backbeat and a summery...

Britney vs. J.Lo: Washed Up Divas Duel for Pop Spotlight

Sarp Yavuz, Staff Writer

March 11, 2011

Filed under ARTS, Music

Britney Ke$ha deserves her due for writing Britney’s amazing new single “Till The World Ends,” which leaked online last Wednesday. From the ethereal, uplifting bridge to the wordless, euphorically chanting chorus, the new Britney single is destined to be the summer anthem of 2011. That’s right, I used the words “euphoric” and “ethereal” in the same sentence to describe a pop song. That’s how good it is. One of the best things about Britney’s next album Femme Fatale is that even before its official release, it has already been incredibly surprising: No one saw it coming when Brit used dub-step for her first single, “Hold it Against Me.” Unlike Gaga, an artist who revels in her own unpredi...

New Music Venue Offers Fresh Vibe

Lizzie Conner

March 11, 2011

Filed under ARTS, Features, Music

It’s difficult to explain the location of the newly established 3 Doors Studio — I usually settle on, “It’s that house near Beethoven’s with all the weird stuff on the porch. All the colorful art, y’know?” Primarily a studio space for several local artists who split rent, the house has also hosted a handful of donation-based, acoustic shows since it opened a few months ago. Although no one on campus seems to have discovered this gem yet, it may be exactly what the Oberlin music scene needs, and I was excited to play there again. On the last Sunday in February, a crowd of about 40 people — half of whom were students — and one jumpy puppy showed up at 121 South Main to find a furniture-less living...

Pianist Bronfman Shows Flair for Understatement

Pianist Bronfman Shows Flair for Understatement

March 11, 2011

During this past Saturday’s Artist Recital Series concert, a silent and venerable man graced Finney Chapel’s stage. The man was Yefim Bronfman, a concert pianist renowned for his viable palate of musical warmth and depth. Born in Tashkent of the former Soviet Union, Bronfman’s artistic assertiveness and clarity shines through his extensive classical piano repertoire. He has received praise from audiences worldwide, a reputation that has earned him a 1997 Grammy for his interpretation of Bartok’s...

Unsung Heroes: An Overview of The Oscars’ Best Original Score Nominees

Sonia Wurzel

March 4, 2011

Filed under ARTS, Music

Sunday night was Hollywood’s prom: the glitzy and glamorous 83rd annual Academy Awards, a night to honor those who work in the film industry. Of course, the focus of the event is always on the prestigious (overrated? predictable, maybe?) Best Picture award, but as was made clear in the presentation for this year’s Best Original Score award, music also plays an essential role in Oscar-nominated movies. Historically, music has always served as an intrinsic element of film. During the silent film era, pianists would play live music alongside film reels, imbuing the film with nuance, tension and emotion. While films no longer require live accompanists, a good score can still make or break a movie, enhancing the dialogue...

Boreyko Stirs Fire in Cleveland Orchestra

Boreyko Stirs Fire in Cleveland Orchestra

March 4, 2011

As part of its annual Oberlin Artist Recital Series visit, the Cleveland Orchestra showcased new and upcoming talent during its performance last Friday evening. Although typically directed by conductor Franz Welser-Möst, last Friday’s performance showcased the artistry of Russian-born Andrey Boreyko, who led a program featuring Igor Stravinsky’s Divertimento: Suite from “The Fairy’s Kiss,” Peteris Vasks’s English Horn Concerto and Sergei Prokofiev’s Fifth Symphony in B-flat Major. ...

A Bit Too Much Schmutz on Jerusalem of Gold

Moze Halperin, Staff Writer

March 4, 2011

Filed under ARTS, Music, Theater & Film

A lot of people might shudder at the thought of publicizing the exploits of their time studying abroad, let alone publicizing them musically — not merely out of embarrassment, but out of humility. Few will ever write about the spiritual journey they underwent on pub crawls, or the identity crisis they endured every time they submitted to the ruthlessness of foreign plumbing. A short story, maybe. A limerick, certainly. But… a musical? A musical is bold. A musical is big. A musical is vulnerable. So kvetching about a musical should be easy. When turning any event into a musical, one is already taking a huge risk: A musical is a heightened and hyperactive representation of reality that more often than not sacrifices...

Born this Woah: Going Gaga for New Video

Sarp Yavuz, Staff Writer

March 4, 2011

Filed under ARTS, Music

Through a neon pink triangle emerges a unicorn of space and stars. The leitmotif from Hitchcock’s Vertigois playing in the background. Another pink triangle descends over the image of the unicorn, and this time we see a blond, masked figure. The camera turns over to reveal that the mask is the back of Lady Gaga’s head, and a voiceover drones, “This is the manifesto of Mother Monster.” Sitting in front of large crystal shards, Lady Gaga has a large, rising hairdo, small horns on her forehead, cheekbone and shoulder extensions and an eyeball over her chin. The image has the distinct feel of Fritz Lang’sMetropolis with Gaga a more human version of Ridley Scott’s Alien Queen. The chin-eye is a referenc...

Australian Synth Swampdwellers, Cut Copy, Clear Dance Floor with Messy Zonoscope

Jamie Helmsworth

February 25, 2011

Filed under ARTS, Music

For those unfamiliar with Australian cultural trends, let me bring you up to speed: They like to party. Remember the viral video of the kid with “famous sunglasses” who threw a house party that turned into a riot while his parents were gone? He’s Australian. Do you know where will.i.am discovered the electro-for-dummies sound the Black Eyed Peas have stuck to since TheE.N.D.? Yes, the famed land of kangaroos and wallabies. Yet oddly enough, the continent’s love of partying has not directly translated into pop-music greatness. Sure, they’ve presented us with the gifts of AC/DC and Nick Cave, but INXS, Jet and Wolfmother were also spawned in Sydney’s cesspools. Fortunately, Cut Copy falls into the former c...

On the Record: Carolina Chocolate Drops

Ian Seeley, Managing Editor

February 25, 2011

Filed under ARTS, Music, On the Record

What was your most memorable experience at the Grammys, other than winning? [Laughs] I was really sick, so it was all kind of a blur. I mean, it all was memorable. I have to say probably seeing Bobby McFerrin and Esperanza Spalding — who later won the Best New Artist — seeing them do a duet at the beginning of the non-telecast portion. It was amazing. The Carolina Chocolate Drops have a live show with a lot going on, such as dancing and the group giving the historical backgrounds of songs. When you record, do you take any special approaches in addressing the recording studio’s limitations? It’s hard to capture a live feel in the studio. We know what we’re doing this next time, we are recording...

Album Review: Radiohead’s The King of Limbs Reminds Why We Like Pop Music

Album Review: Radiohead’s The King of Limbs Reminds Why We Like Pop Music

February 25, 2011

Perhaps it’s no coincidence that the same week that Lady Gaga’s latest single, “Born This Way,” became the fastest-selling single ever to hit iTunes, resulting in over one million downloads in five days, Radiohead digitally released its eighth album. The two pop-music giants have more in common than one would expect. Both artists have made a career off of acting like freaks: While Lady Gaga intentionally distorts the blonde, glam pop star image to the point of looking (and acting) like...

Interview with the JACK Quartet

Interview with the JACK Quartet

February 25, 2011

Why “JACK”? Ari Streisfeld: It’s an acronym — John, Ari, Chris and Kevin. We specialize in contemporary music, and one of the first pieces we played together was the third string quartet by Helmut Lachenmann, the German composer. It’s called “Grido,” which means “scream” in Italian. But it is also an acronym for the members of the Arditti Quartet, for whom [the piece] was written. While we were working on it, we were joking around saying, “If this piece was written for us, ...

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