Tuesday, September 14, 2010
There will be no rest for the Downtown Raleigh music subculture following a sold out week of Hopscotch as the arts festival SPARKcon kicks off Thursday 9/16 with musicSPARK, a one-hundred and seven act four day long music festival hosted on outdoor stages sprouted on Fayetteville and Hargett Streets as well as core music venues indigenous to downtown such as Slims, Berkley Cafe, The Pour House, and the newly reincarnated Kings.
musicSPARK, guided by the big-hearted love-everybody local promoter Mary Ellis, has built the most eclectically derived bill of local acts as can be brought together for one-hundred and seven performances over four days. At musicSPARK this season, big local rock and roll names like Tomahawks, Knock Out Roses, Bright Young Things, A Rooster for the Masses, and Once and Future Kings join forces with local grass roots hip hop like Inflowential, smooth as silk rap rap of MicSavvy, downtown Friday spinner DJ Haekmatic, and every possible in between like Celtic folk artist Gray Beard and hook-heavy Americana string trio The Sinful Savage Tigers. Speaking of in between, Durham experimental group Battle Star Canada takes stage on day one Thursday night at Kings with Left Outlet and A Tin Djinn.
If you are not familiar with Battle Star Canada, think back to May of this year when this duo's previous project, Scientific Superstar played their last show prior to reforming minus their charismatic lead Junko Berglund who departed to focus her attention on her new j-pop group Fujiyama Roll. Scientific Superstar was several years into the making of one of the most unique experimental groups in town having fashioned themselves a band who writes the music of a fictional comic book series authored by its members. Says Paul Gallant of Battlestar Canada, which yes, is a reference to the brilliant syfy channel remake of the original Battlestar Galactica, "The name change was a bit of a break," further explaining that while their style and delivery of synth heavy sub-dance rhythms and heavily vocoder flavored vocals has not changed, without Junko fronting it didn't feel like SS. Not missing a step, Battlestar Canada debuts four months later with fresh songs at musicSPARK this Thursday night and will announce intentions to release a split 7 inch "in the next couple of months."
The Raleigh Downtowner has published a splendid over all explanation for SPARKcon and you can download the SPARKcon full festival schedule with venues, activities, dates, and times...including the "experimental" here. --Carrboro Ninja