That TimeScape Fest Gets Canceled and Buffalo Black Drops A New Orwellian Single.
As if last month's hugely disappointing Dallas Music District Festival wasn't a clear enough sign that peak festival is squarely in our rearview, North Texas went and added another couple of big fests in recent weeks.
But just because you bill it, doesn't mean the crowds will come. A fine example of this came this week when the inaugural TimeScape Music and Arts Festival cancelled its planned July 18 affair at Globe Life Park, citing “underwhelming ticket sales” among other reasons. In the wake of the news, planned TimeScape acts STRFKR and Giraffage will now play at Trees that day, instead.
Another thing there's certainly no shortage of around these parts? Immensely talented performers. Chief among them, perhaps, is the one and only Erykah Badu, who caused quite the stir during her first-ever Montreal International Jazz Festival appearance last night. The “grand dame of neo-soul,” as they like to call her up that way was even awarded the fest's prestigious Ella Fitzgerald Award during her encore. The 17th recipient of the award, she joins an elite class of iconic past honorees like Diana Ross, Aretha Franklin and Etta James. Not too bad for our Lady of White Rock Lake.
That performance came just days after video surfaced of Badu's performance at last month's Roots Picnic (read: The Tonight Show band's version of Dia de los Toadies), where she joined the fest's namesake outfit — as well as YG, Freeway and the Lox — for a 17-minute classic hip-hop medley. Video of the performance, which includes her “Love of My Life (An Ode to Hip-Hop)” and the Roots' “Act Too (Love of My Life),” below.
Elsewhere, loads of other local talents released new music this week. One such act is Buffalo Black, who is letting us premiere the third single from his upcoming Surrilla EP, which will be released on July 28. Judging from the new track, “1984,” which you can stream for the first time below (as well as the tracks “History” and “High Noon” that we've featured in this column in the past few months), it should prove to be a worthy follow-up to last year's REDPILLwondrland EP and to the debut LP that helped Buffalo Black score his placement in Spike Lee's Da Sweet Blood of Jesus. Give it a listen already.
It's a big week for Dallas hip-hop, to be sure. For a minute now, we recently learned, Denton's AV the Great has been working with Timbaland's Mosley Music Group. Just yesterday, the “SexyBack” producer posted the first fruits of these efforts to his personal SoundCloud page. This new AV track — called “Small Giants,” which you can find below — was produced by MMG protege Velly. If AV does end up using these tracks to springboard onto bigger and better things, this is the one we'll look back on as his version of Kanye West's “Last Call.”
It's been similarly good times for recent Epocha one-year anniversary performer Tru Def, who got to do all kinds of cool stuff thanks to his part in Bud Light's “Up For Whatever” campaign. Some of his experiences — like meeting Snoop Dogg and joining Lil Jon onstage while the rapper played Tru's single “Do Me” — can be seen in the mini doc below.
Meanwhile, Nervous Curtains is currently taking a break from live performances until its third LP, Con, drops on October 2. In the interim, the electronic-infused synth-punk outfit released the album's first single, “Devastator,” earlier today. Per Canada's Exclaim! magazine, which premiered the track, “Devastator” features co-production and backing vocals from Pinkish Black's Daron Beck, who the band says, “played a big role in helping us structure the song and sculpt the dynamics.” Get your first taste of the band's drum machine-friendly new direction below.
Likewise, Jonathan Tyler offered up another taste of his upcoming solo LP, Holy Smokes, which is his first since escaping his Atlantic Records deal. The album is due out August 7, but you can check out the album's second single, “Honey Pie,” below.
Another LP coming down the next few months is a new one from the Toadies. Due out September 18, the upcoming Heretics LP will be something of an odd left turn for the band. As they do on the first night of their annual Dia de los Toadies festival, the guys will acoustically reimagine a few of their fan favorite tracks, reworked to be played on mandolin, piano and banjo among other instruments. Also included on the disc will be two brand new songs, a cover of Blondie's “Heart of Glass” and a previously unreleased track. Here's a teaser for that one.
Or maybe you just wanna dance? This new one from Dallas EDM producer Colton Carlyle is pretty much guaranteed to make you do just that.
Other new ones to look out for include: Bare Mountain (due out June 29); a new solo record from Snarky Puppy and Kirk Franklin keyboardist Shaun Martin (due out July 7); and a new full-length from Salim Nourallah (due out August 7). Also not to be overlooked is the recently-released LP from newcomer Matthew McNeal, whose Compadre makes for a strong batch of Americana. Check that one out below.
On the video front, Radioactivity marked the release of its sophomore Silent Kill LP today by releasing a video for the hit-it-and-quit-it single, “Silent.” Like much of the band's catalog, the clip is a beautifully done, yet all too short one that finds the guys performing in the back of a sweet vintage tour bus. Check it out below.
Then there's 88 Killa, who was so stoked about his “MPH” track, he couldn't wait until his broken arm healed to shoot the video for it. (You'll notice it dangling in his tricked-out fur sling throughout the clip.) Here's that one.
Speaking of cool visuals: If you enjoyed Kendrick Lamar's recent performance at the BET Awards, you also unwittingly enjoyed the works of Dallas-spring Los Angeles artist Blue The Great. He's the one who painted the cop cars Lamar performed upon at the show.
Finally, if found yourself wondering at any point what ex-Soviet frontman John Spies has been up to since blowing up his universally adored alt-rock-turned-lo-fi-acoustic-pop-turned-doom-metal outfit, well, the answer is that he's been crafting ambient noise music under the name oldsol. You can find some of that stuff here.
Meanwhile, the similarly adored lo-fi Denton pop outfit Blessin' will blow thing up too following one last show, which will come next Wednesday, July 8, at Rubber Gloves.
Cover photo of Buffalo Black by Karlo X. Ramos. Got a tip for White Noise? Email us!