Photos: SCOPE and Fountain Art Fairs in NYC

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This past Friday, I went down to the city to check out the annual Fountain and SCOPE art fairs.

SCOPE and Fountain are two of several other curated art fairs that are organized under the umbrella of the Armory Arts Week. I also saw organized art collections from Fountain and SCOPE this past December as a part of Miami Art Basel, which is one of the largest and most influential collection of art shows featuring galleries, exhibitors and artists from all over the world.

The amount of work, talent, creativity, diversity, etc. can be overwhelming at times and it feels impossible to check out what the art shows have to offer in full. It’s really fun to walk around and soak it all in. It’s hard NOT to take a ton of photos of the work, but I contained myself much better this time around. Plus you know, opening night featured an open bar and performance art pieces, so there was much going on.

Whether you’re a fan of contemporary, fine, performance or street art, these art fairs have all bases covered. There’s something for everyone, and you can also find affordable art in the mix as well. It was also awesome seeing local artists such as Greg Dunn and artists from Davis Art Services, based out of North Adams. Shouts also to Saturated Threads who I met back in the day at Marketplace Gallery. On our way out, we saw street artist Ellis at work tracing the shadow of a bicycle. Overall, this year’s shows were great and I highly recommend you keep tabs on the annual arts week every March in NYC and check it out for yourself.

Hit the jump or click the image above to check out some photos from this year’s fairs!

Also be sure to check out Art Geek Studios’ photo recap over on Facebook!

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Dimensions Festival 2012: Photos and Recap

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While en route to Croatia, by way of three planes and one bus, I came across a line in the book I was reading at the time (the Best Music Writing of 2009 compilation), that read, “To write is to begin with nothing and hopefully get somewhere.”

Being fully aware that multi-day music festivals are as much of a subjective enigma as anything else in life, with as many different experiences as there are people in attendance, that line struck a cord and has been buried deep within me ever since. I had hoped from the beginning that traveling to Croatia would help me to gain a new perspective – how could it not, really? – but I didn’t realize such a simply-worded outlook could be so influential (and before I even got to my destination, no less).

This newfound insight was reaffirmed in the days following the festival as I began to digest what I had just experienced and thought about how to begin to put it into words for KAB. My goal here is simple: to start with the six scatter-brained notes and the 894 pictures I took on my iPhone, and hope to get somewhere.

Hit the jump for a massive photo gallery and to read more about my take of this year’s debut Dimensions Festival.

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Recap: Tragedy at Le Poisson Rouge

Le Poisson Rouge is not a punk club. Not that it avoids heavier music entirely – the West Village venue’s upcoming events calendar features appearances by Rorschach and Converge, among others. But the club hosts a wide range of live performance, from indie shows (another one coming up: the Clean and Times New Viking) to poetry readings to contemporary classical music, and its owners don’t want it trashed and spray-painted into a hardcore dive. So, perhaps, it felt a little odd to see Tragedy last Saturday evening in a concert hall where the bouncers wore white shirts with neckties, or one with a VIP bottle-service section at the back of the room.

But think about it a little more, and it makes perfect sense. Tragedy have done well for themselves by crafting an aura of mystery. The Portland band maintains little to no internet presence while quietly self-releasing their records – four LPs over the past decade, with a smattering of singles to tide fans over. Six years have passed between their latest album Darker Days Ahead and the one before it; a few friends remarked that they had no idea it had even come out until they saw copies on the merch table in the foyer. They garner attention from highbrow metal magazines like Decibel; given their recent interest in the punk middleground, I wouldn’t be shocked to see them covered in Spin. And they also don’t play out very often – every tour announcement stirs up rumors that this one will be their last.

Tragedy appear tonight upstairs at Valentines with Born Low, Neutron Rats, and Maggot Brain. 17 New Scotland Avenue, Albany. 8:00 PM, $10.

Check out the rest of the review beneath the cut!

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New York State of Bass: 5 Q’s with Proper Villians

In advance of New York State of Bass taking place tomorrow night at the Armory, I had a quick chat with Proper Villians.

1. Introduce yourself! Who you are, what you do, where you’re from.

I’m Jon, I’m from NYC and I make/play eclectic bass music. Mainly dubstep, but also electro, moombahton, hip-hop, drum & bass or just about anything with a lot of bass or lazer noises in it.

2. How did you first get involved with DJing and remixing? Do you identify with being a DJ or a producer more? Do you separate them in your mind or for you, is it all apart of the same game?

I got my first pair of turntables back in 1998 shortly after attending my first rave. I started making beats on a PC maybe a year later, but didn’t get serious about my production until September 12th, 2001. DJing and producing are really intertwined for me. I don’t really consider a song “finished” until I play it out at a party & the remixing thing came about so I could work a wider range of songs into my DJ sets.

3. What have you been up to lately? What are some recent projects or things we can expect from you in the near future?

I just did a remix of Roger Seventytwo’s “Take Me Higher” which was released on Fools Gold/Ministry of Sound (you can also grab it for free on my SoundCloud). I also released a free bootleg of Rihanna’s “Birthday Cake” on my Soundcloud this week. I’ve got a bunch of new bootlegs and a couple of originals in the works.

4. Favorite track or producer that is particularly killing it right now?

There’s too much good music coming out right now to play favorites. I’m really feeling all this new moombahton stuff. Producers like Billy the Gent, Jay Fay, as well as the heavier “moombahcore” stuff like Nick Thayer & Milo & Otis.

5. What can we look forward to on Saturday?
Awesome M@#$@# music

You catch Proper Villians Saturday at the Armory alongside a generously large helping of local DJs spread out across three different rooms, as well as with a silent disco component. Set times and other event information available here. Bonus interview question beneath the jump!

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