20 Watts


Hunters and Runners Return to Syracuse for a night of music by 20watts
April 26, 2010, 3:32 am
Filed under: 20 Watts Video, Scene Around Town, XCLUS!VES

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EXCLUS!VES: Mouth’s Cradle’s The Next Big Thing by tjwell01

Mouth's Cradle's "The Next Big Thing" hits iTunes tomorrow.

PREVIEW: Mouth’s Cradle’s MySpace

LISTEN: “Ghosts” by Mouth’s Cradle

LISTEN: “Princess of the Beatz” by Mouth’s Cradle

LISTEN: “Honey from a Stone” by Mouth’s Cradle

20 Watts gets the first crack at Mouth’s Cradle’s much-anticipated The Next Big Thing, because we’re cool like that. The LP drops on iTunes tomorrow, and just like that Mouth’s Cradle sets the stage for a big leap from relative obscurity to becoming Syracuse University’s electronic/hip-hop titans. In addition to brand new tracks, the album features all the same hits from their debut EP Baby Teeth, which dropped last semester and got the buzz whirling. They also got some special help from experienced engineer and SU alum, Andrew Maury, who worked with Ra Ra Riot and The Static Jacks.

Kevin Hegedus (right) and Brandon Linn (left) accomplished something special with this album and it comes at a perfect time for the band on the eve of their coming out party this Thursday when they open for Sleigh Bells at Spark Art Place.

Stay tuned for an in-depth review of the LP tomorrow!

–Jett Wells



Words of the Week: An interview with Aaron LaCrate by tjwell01

Aaron LaCrate, a big-time DJ/hip-hop mogul, is an SU Alum.

Each Monday, 20 Watts is poised to feature a new exclusive artist interview! Here we present our WORDS OF THE WEEK!

PREVIEW: Aaron LaCrate’s MySpace and his website.

LISTEN TO HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE INTERVIEW:

From the age of 10, Aaron LaCrate has been a prolific music talent from the streets of Baltimore and went onto launching his record label and clothing line, while also collaborating with Jay-Z, Lily Allen, The Cool Kids, Gorillaz and Mark Ronson–oh, and I did mention he went to Syracuse University? He’s been a secret famous alum until now, and the stories of his DJ days at SU are eerily familiar and fascinating. After rising to the top of the underground DJ/hip-hop scene, the fellow orange wanted to reach out to share his story.

20 Watts: Talk a little bit about being a young DJ in Baltimore when you were a kid…

Aaron LaCrate: It was great. It was nothing like it is now. There were no DJs back then, there were these electronic stores that sold records, stereo equipment and car stereos, so for me I had to assemble a mobile sound system. I had to go to the Goodwills and the flea markets, whichever way, I had the two different turn tables. It was really exciting back then because it was uncharted territory. There was no way to learn how to mix, no way to learn how to do anything, but to go on your own journey and find people that would like you enough to share that information with you. It was almost a very subculture thing. It was a testament to your personality and your character to how far you would get, in a lot of ways.

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Words of the Week: An Interview with Semi Precious Weapons by tjwell01

Semi Precious Weapons' Justin Tranter says they are "a filthy rock band."

Each Monday, 20 Watts is poised to feature a new, exclusive artist interview! Here we present our WORDS OF THE WEEK!
PREVIEW: Semi Precious Weapons’ MySpace
LISTEN TO HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE INTERVIEW:

Led by filthy rock n’ roll purist Justin Tranter, Semi Precious Weapons, are the gritty opener act touring with Lady Gaga on her Monster Ball Tour, but don’t be fooled–these guys are quite the showmen themselves. They keep it simple: they want to party, and they want you to have fun, and they do it in high heels. They started out like your average rock band, but the road they took to get to where they are now is anything but average. Keep a look out for their debut LP You Love You at the end of March.

20 Watts: Describe your band’s overall attitude and style.

Justin Trantor: The overall attitude is to make balls-to-the-wall rock n’ roll that kicks ass, and is really fun. We want people to have fun, to party, we want people to get laid. I think that’s what the whole point of rock n’ roll should be, and another important part is danger, excitement, and kids’ parents should be mad at them for listening to us–all of those good things. Obviously we also get the glam label thrown at us, and I think that’s just because I wear high heels, but there’s definitely a lot of worse things to be called than glam.

20W: Some people say you’re like the glam version of The Sex Pistols. Ever heard that before?

JT: I think my favorite quote was that we’re like The Sex Pistols if they came out of the Warhol scene. I think that’s our favorite description of our band ever.

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Words of the Week: An Interview with The Silent League by 20watts

20 Watts talked to The Silent League this week about their new album and why they make great music. Check back here for new interviews every Monday!

PREVIEW: VISIT The Silent League’s MySpace
READ: COVERAGE of The Silent League’s set at the Westcott this past Saturday!
READ: REVIEW of The Silent League’s latest album But You’ve Always Been the Caretaker
Each Monday, 20 Watts is poised to feature a new, exclusive artist interview! Here we present our WORDS OF THE WEEK!

20 Watts was given the opportunity to sit down with the members of The Silent League after their set at Westcott Theater this weekend. The interview was held in the second floor of Westcott Theater on a few comfortable couches with the six band members relaxing, throwing back some beer and wiping the sweat from their foreheads after an energetic live show. Here’s what we talked about.

20 Watts: We’re here with the Silent League. This is Eric Vilas-Boas interviewing. You guys have just released your third album, how does that feel, how is it different from your first two?

Justin Russo: I feel like our first two albums were sort of just building up steam, figuring things out as we went along. This one we’ve done our best to pre-plan and get everything into place. I’m pretty happy with the way the album came out. Everything’s been going great so far, so yeah, I’m pretty stoked.

20 Watts: How is the third album constructed compared to your first two? How was it different? Continue reading



20 Watts Video: What is 20 Watts? by tjwell01

What is 20 Watts, exactly? We’re the guys who bring mixtapes instead of flowers on the first date and the girls who’ll never shut up about their favorite new single. We love music — that’s all it comes down to for us. We’re gearing up to step it up this year. New developments are on the way, and we can’t wait to keep improving the brand. Keep reading and listening, because we feel the love.

Love and stereo,

20 Watts



The Silent League, The Growlers and Dr. Dog @ Westcott Theater (Photos, Review, Interview) by Isabel Alcantara

Justin Russo (foreground) and Shannon Fields of The Silent League supporting The Growlers and Dr. Dog. MORE photos below the cut!

PREVIEW: VISIT The Silent League, The Growlers and Dr. Dog on MySpace
EXCLUSIVE: READ an interview with The Silent League

A night of psychedelic indie rock drenched the Westcott last night with space-y chamber pop from The Silent League, floral blues-punk with a Southern drawl from The Growlers and straightforward, hook-heavy hard rock  from Dr. Dog. Idiosyncrasy and quirk came to mind throughout the show, whether the crowd was dancing to the groove-based rhythm from The Growlers, peering into the massive sunglasses of Dr. Dog’s guitarist or watching The Silent League members play multiple instruments at the same time.

Dr. Dog, the headlining act, played the simplest and tightest show, entertaining the crowd consistently and impressing the audience with nary a pause in between songs except to joke about their day off the next day. “What is there to do in this town? You guys got a zoo or something?” bassist Toby Leaman joked before commenting on  the weather. The band interspersed their set with newer songs — likely to appear on their upcoming album Shame, Shame (due out April 6, 2010) — and fan favorites. Continue reading