Posts Tagged ‘Passion Pit’

Taking  a break from opening up for Passion Pit‘s current tour, The RAA (Rural Alberta Advantage) packed up their minimal set of instruments to play two sold out shows at Mercury Lounge on January 9th.  The Canadian indie folk-rockers bear an audio resemblance to Neutral Milk Hotel, but perhaps a bit more gritty in certain places and with one less band member.

Frontman Nils Edenloff, admittedly fighting a cold during the show, managed to find the vocals to complete the first of two 50-minute sets for the night, covering most of their debut album (Hometowns) and some new tracks off an upcoming release.  Chatting up with Edenloff before the show,  he admitted that Mercury Lounge felt more at home for this band (versus the grand Terminal 5 they had attempted two nights in a row as the openers for Passion Pit) – clearly not a huge fan of T5 (and rightfully so).  I think the audience would also agree.  I can’t imagine  Amy Cole’s multitasking efforts on the xylophone, tambourine, and snare drum to really translate as well as it did in the basement-type venue and in front of Saturday night’s audience.  Snapshots and one of their standout tracks below:


Nominations for the 2009 MTVu Woodies are out  – Passion Pit, Friendly Fires, La Roux, Phoenix, and even Ra Ra Riot get some credit this year.  The event tapes at NYC’s Roseland Ballroom on November 18th, but voting begins today (and runs through November 16th) at

The nominees for the 2009 “mtvU Woodie Awards” are:


Woodie of the Year – (Artist of the Year)

The artists who made the biggest splash on mtvU and the college music scene this past year.



Asher Roth (SRC/Universal Mowtown/Schoolboy)

Kings of Leon (RCA)

Drake (Universal Republic/Young Money)

MGMT (Columbia/Red Ink)

Silversun Pickups (Dangerbird Records)


The Breaking Woodie – (Best Emerging Artist)

mtvU is where new developing artists are test driven for the first time by the toughest critics around: college students.  One of this year’s newest artists will win the coveted “Breaking Woodie.”



Grizzly Bear (Warp Records)

Never Shout Never (Warner Bros./Loveway Records)

Wale (Allido/Interscope)

La Roux (Interscope/Cherytree)

Friendly Fires (XL Recordings)

Passion Pit (Columbia/Frenchkiss Records)


Left Field Woodie – (Most Original Artist)

They are genre-busters. They resist classification.  They came out of left field, and we are still not sure what section of the record store to find them.   



Amanda Blank (Downtown Records)

Janelle Monae (Bad Boy Records)

Major Lazer (Downtown Records)

Jay Reatard (Matador Records)

Tech N9ne (Strange Music Inc)



Best Video Woodie  – (Best Video of the Year) 

The music video that is so incredible, we would watch it even without the music.



Matt & Kim “Lessons Learned” (Cornerstone/Fader)

The Dead Weather “Treat Me Like Your Mother” (Warner Bros./Third Man)

Death Cab for Cutie “Grapevine Fires” (Atlantic)
Anjulie “Boom” (Hear Music)

Yeah Yeah Yeahs “Heads will Roll” (DGC/Interscope)

Kid Cudi “Day N Nite” (G.O.O.D Music/Fool’s Gold/Universal Motown)


Performing Woodie – (Best Tour) 

For those artists who take to the road and never let up, always giving that memorable live performance. 



Green Day (Reprise/Warner Bros.)

Phoenix (Glassnote)

3OH!3 (Atlantic/Photo Finish)

Animal Collective (Domino)

POS (Rhymesayers)


The Good Woodie – (Greatest Social Impact)

The award for the artist whose commitment to a social cause has effected the greatest change this year. 



John Legend (Columbia Records) – Show Me Campaign 

 John Legend founded the Show Me Campaign to help end poverty through sustainable development at the individual, family, and community levels.  His organization works closely with Millennium Promise and the people of Mbola, Tanzania to implement practical solutions to poverty including clean water, improved health care and education, higher-yielding agriculture, and internet connectivity.


Wyclef Jean (Columbia Records) – Yele Haiti

Wyclef Jean has been active in his support of his native country and created the foundation Yéle Haiti to provide humanitarian aid and assistance to Haiti. Yéle Haiti is a non-political organization intended to empower the people of Haiti and the Haitian diaspora to rebuild their nation.


Kenna (Interscope Records) – PlayPumps

Kenna began working closely with PlayPumps at the beginning of 2009 in an effort to bring 100 PlayPumps water systems to Africa. PlayPumps’ goal is to provide access to clean drinking water to ten million people. Kenna also started his own organization, called Summit on the Summit, with the intent to promote safe water drinking worldwide and to teach the importance of setting and attaining goals – physically and emotionally – by climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro and documenting his experience.


Jamie Tworkowski – To Write Love on Her Arms

Jamie Tworkowski founded To Write Love on Her Arms (TWLOHA), a non-profit movement dedicated to presenting hope and finding help for those struggling with depression, addiction, self-injury and suicide. TWLOHA exists to encourage, inform, inspire, and to invest directly into treatment and recovery.


Ra Ra Riot (Barsuk Records) – John Ryan Pike Memorial Foundation

When the band’s 23-year-old drummer, John Pike, passed away tragically, his family and the band formed the John Ryan Pike Memorial Foundation, to encourage and promote music and the performing arts. 


Alicia Keys (J Records) -Keep a Child Alive/AIDSactivism

Alicia Keys is a devoted AIDS activist and philanthropist. In 2003, she co-founded Keep a Child Alive (KCA), a people’s movement that provides life-saving AIDS medicine and surrounding care to children and families in Africa and India. KCA also provides support to AIDS orphans left behind to keep the most vulnerable children out of harms way.

My photos from Passion Pit’s second sold-out show at the Bowery Ballroom in NYC (on Saturday, June 20th).

In one word:  Awesome.

Their next visit to NYC is opening for Phoenix on September 25th at Rumsey Field in Central Park…