Tag Archive for Cody ChesnuTT

The Roots at Lowlands Festival 2011: Pro-Shot VIDEOS

Now that The Roots are on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon they can’t log 100+ days a year on the road like they used to. However, they apparently still manage to sneak in weekend trips to Europe for festival gigs like this.

Here, I bring you a full ~60 minute pro-shot tv broadcast video of The Roots at the Lowlands Festival in Biddinghuizen, Netherlands on August 21, 2011. At this point in time, The Roots were bass-less. Owen Biddle, their bass player since early 2008, had just left the band and they hadn’t yet picked up new bass player, Mark Kelley. Not to worry, Damon Bryson, aka Tuba Gooding Jr., holds the low end down on sousaphone.

This video initially appeared as a DVD download over at dimeadozen.org. I took the liberty of splitting it and posting to youtube so a wider audience can enjoy it. So enjoy…

Also, pay special attention to video 5 of 5, where Black Thought blacks the f— out spitting Kool G Rap’s “Men @ Work” verses. Absolutely ridiculous.

The Roots (1 of 5) August 21, 2011
Biddinghuizen, The Netherlands @ Lowlands Festival
Intro > How I Got Over > Here I Come > Mellow My Man:

The Roots (2 of 5) August 21, 2011
Biddinghuizen, The Netherlands @ Lowlands Festival
Mellow My Man (continued) > Drums > Mellow My Man > Jusufckwithis > Fantastic > You Got Me Intro:

The Roots (3 of 5) August 21, 2011
Biddinghuizen, The Netherlands @ Lowlands Festival
You Got Me > Sweet Child O’ Mine > Bad To The Bone > You Got Me > Immigrant Song / Monster:

The Roots (4 of 5) August 21, 2011
Biddinghuizen, The Netherlands @ Lowlands Festival
Immigrant Song / Monster (continued) > Get Busy > Jungle Boogie > The Next Movement > The Seed:

The Roots (5 of 5) August 21, 2011
Biddinghuizen, The Netherlands @ Lowlands Festival
The Bottle (Gil-Scott Heron cover) > Move On Up (Curtis Mayfield cover) > Men @ Work (Kool G Rap & DJ Polo cover):

Bilal 8/12/11 Indianapolis @ Madame Walker Theatre (VIDEOS)

This post is a guest review by Leo Weekly’s Damien McPherson.

The Madame Walker Theater is showing its age. The room dates back to the 1920s, but since its renovation in the late 70s, it appears little has been done to modernize the space (though their website does mention fundraising attempts). It’s still a beautiful building, wedged into its intersection on the edge of downtown Indianapolis, and the missing “K” on the rooftop’s sign at least gives a bit of personality even in the face of sadness at urban decay from historical sites.

Maybe I was looking a bit too closely, but by the time Bilal hit the stage, he looked pissed off. The sound in the room wasn’t great, and the 935-seater was barely half-filled (we sat in the sparsely populated balcony so as to give you the astounding visuals accompanying these words). One of the keyboardist’s platforms wasn’t plugged into the mix, leaving out many of the songs’ electronic bleeps and bloops and leaving room for a roadie to hover at the side of stage laying cable, distracting to say the least. The guitar amp failed during an early solo, and it appeared the drummer was having a monitor issue. It wasn’t until almost halfway through the show, during “Sometimes”, that what approximated a smile crossed Bilal’s mouth and he looked comfortable. None of this took away from his vocal performance, mind you, as the man is a machine. His perfectly controlled vocal abandon is one of modern music’s marvels: soulful, jazzy, and church-infected. The guy could sing Nickelback songs and sound like a genius (don’t prove that, though, please).

Something To Hold On To, Make Me Over, Gotsta Be Cool, Lord Don’t Let It, For You, Reminisce (flipped with the J Dilla “The $” beat), Fast Lane, Sometimes:

The first half of his set was split between his debut, First Born Second, and his shelved-but-leaked followup “Love For Sale”. He seems perfectly at ease on stage with the audience’s familiarity with the material they shouldn’t know, and proves himself a bigger man than me. I’d play half of one of those songs, and the second I spot someone singing along, I’d probably stop the song and ask for ten bucks from the person. Glad he didn’t, though, ‘cause I didn’t have any cash on me, much as he deserved it. “Fast Lane”, the non-representative first single from his debut, finally got the arrangement it deserved outside of its Dr. Dre studio sheen.

“Sometimes” is always a wonder, the little song that could. It was never a single, but the crowd demands it and sings along as if it were a standard. The second half of the set is mostly from his latest, Airtight’s Revenge, and the crowd wasn’t as responsive (though this was definitely a ‘giving’ crowd, very loose and supportive) to this material. “Little Ones”, dedicated to his autistic son, was a definite highlight, the emotional connection to the song a tangible thing. He closed the main set with the incredible “All Matter”. While I’m partial to the arrangement on Robert Glasper’s Double Booked, here he worked magic on his Airtight version. This song easily takes permanent residence in my favorite songs of the last decade. Just listen/watch.

Levels > All Matter:

Beggars not being choosy, the crowd’s response at this point didn’t really require an encore. They seemed to give up their cheering rather quickly. Thankfully, Bilal’s show is built for an encore, as he hadn’t performed his biggest song yet or this tour’s epic closer. “Soul Sista” melted every woman in the room, as it’s done for a decade now, while the Led Zeppelin cover “Since I’ve Been Loving You” melted the walls. A great quickie road trip, another excellent Bilal show (my second of this album cycle), and here’s a near perfect visual representation to enjoy. -Damien McPherson

Since I’ve Been Loving You (Led Zeppelin cover):