Livin' on the ...
Next door to the Durham Arts Council, The Edge has been hosting varying stripes of hip hop, electro, and R&B for nigh on two years. The club, Durham's answer to Raleigh's Office, located at 103 Morris St., is pumping out beats weekly with multi-level dance floors with local and touring DJs spinning drum and bass, progressive trance and many other flavors. The space also provides for occasional live bands and vocalists, so check out what is coming up. It's another welcome place to move to the groove, hang out until the wee hours among the shadows and blinking lights. Many of their events are ages 18 and up, too. For more info: 667-1012.
Round 'Em Up: Local Records Right Now
The folks at both ends of the Tobacco Road line are hard at work laying down tracks, and there's a ripe batch of releases in the works or out there now for picking up. Just keep your ears open, chat with your record store clerks for the down low and, of course, stay tuned to this column for more.
Chapel Hillians are representing, just look at this list: Rockers Go Machine just released their Look to the EP on Bu Hanan Records. Look for a brand new fist-in-the-air rock single from Transportation on the Demonbeach imprint, while He Who Sits on the Ice Hears Me Singing, Lud's newest long player, is out on Smith Level Records. All three pop bands North Elementary, Pleasant and Gerty cleverly self-released a freebie CD with a pair of cuts each to get word on their June 6 show at Go! Studios. MoRisen Records of Charlotte just threw a compilation release party. The 17 track CD splits songs between Charlotte and Chapel Hill bands. Chapel Hill's entries include the sublime rock and blues of Jennyanykind, Stones idolatry by Snatches of Pink, Marat (a quartet featuring alumni of locals What Peggy Wants, Dillon Fence, Snatches and the Veldt). In the Merge camp, there's a brand new Portastatic record out now called Summer of the Shark. They recently opened for Sonic Youth at newish venue the Orange Peel in Asheville. In related news, Superchunk just announced plans for a double CD of singles, B-sides and rarities titled Cup of Sand slated for Aug. 19. In Chapel Hill hip hop, local MCSpectac just released his debut EP Lessons from Da Ghetto.
In Durham, the summer's heating up with lots of local releases, too. Keep your eye on soulful hip-hop trio Little Brother --Big Pooh, Phonte, and beat master 9th Wonder--if you aren't already. Their The Listening, out on ABB Records, is deservedly drawing a lot of attention from hip-hop leaders like The Roots and Blackalicious, and legends like Pete Rock. Also hitting the hip-hop sweet spot are Durham's own THETHYRDAY, a threesome of MCs, matched with a handful of hot young producers. The folks at Pox World Empire, home of the Sames and Jett Rink, is working on a local compilation experiment, involving Triangle musicians recording anonymously with each other to form studio-only groups, so that each player doesn't know who the identity of their collaborator. Titled Poxperiment Volumen A, it involves, thus far, members of Cold Sides, The Sleepies, Sorry About Dresden, The Sames, Roxotica and The Rosebuds.
On the sly, look out for some homemade stuff on self-released CDs by Durham duo Des Ark, avant jazz group Defenestrator, and heady rock foursome Cold Sides.