Basemental Music Review: Thee Arcadians
Feb13

Basemental Music Review: Thee Arcadians

December brought with it not one, not two, but three releases from Florence psych punks Thee Arcadians — Ian St. George on guitar, Nico Lapinski on bass, and Elliot Hartmann-Russell on drums. Sure, it sounds like maybe they just put up a mic in band practice, but there is an ocean of material that demonstrates musical depth, musical sea creatures, and musical water pollution. Whether or not said ocean is acidified is up for listeners...

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Basemental: new album by Cousin Moon, reviewed
Jan30

Basemental: new album by Cousin Moon, reviewed

When I started at Hampshire College in 2010, there was this cool band of upperclassmen that kind of blew my mind. They were called Pale Cowboy. They had jazz influences, but it was clear that making irresistible pop music was their thing. One song won me over, which was later released on their first two EPs: 2012’s Life Nature Library and 2013’s Shelter. It’s “Don’t Wanna Discuss,” a catchy, driving little pop song which has prescient...

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Basemental: Wocky’s new album, reviewed
Jan16

Basemental: Wocky’s new album, reviewed

Roxy Leblanc has been a mainstay in the Hadley underground for as long as I can remember. She fronted the band Great Smokey, an earnest and groovy psych group that took a few forms between 2009 and 2016, before calling an indefinite hiatus last winter. Since then she has developed and pushed her solo effort, where she goes by the moniker Wocky. Wocky just released her first full-length, Changeling, following her 2014 debut EP,...

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Basemental: Stop the Trolls
Jan03

Basemental: Stop the Trolls

Staying strong in the face of hate and lost spaces Last week, Basemental interviewed a local musician who lost people close to him in the Ghost Ship warehouse fire on Dec. 2 in Oakland, California. That piece sparked a discussion of safe spaces for artists, which Meyer continues this week. Exploiting tragedy to advance an extreme political agenda is a known strategy that has been employed by the right for decades. The Islamophobia...

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Basemental: What Happened in Oakland
Dec27

Basemental: What Happened in Oakland

One artist’s reflections on the Ghost Ship fire  NOTE: On Dec. 2, the Ghost Ship, a 10,000 square-foot arts space inside an Oakland, California, warehouse, caught fire during a performance. Thirty-six people were killed, and more were injured. Steve D’Agostino, from the local act ZEBU!, has split time between the Western Mass and Bay Area arts scenes. He was familiar with the Ghost Ship, and lost people close to him. He was...

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Basemental: Don’t Give Me That Corporate Ambition
Dec12

Basemental: Don’t Give Me That Corporate Ambition

On Thursday, Dec. 1, I stood outside the TD Bank in downtown Northampton with about 30 other people to stand with the Sioux Nation and indigenous-led water protectors — not only to stop the pipeline, but to asphyxiate its funding. Local organizers answered an ask from Indigenous organizers at Standing Rock to make these goals a reality. Sound carried across Main Street as our group chanted on one side of the street, and a delegation...

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