TWEETS

Lazerbeak

Super Producer


Lazerbeak is a thug. Do not be deceived by the nice-guy introductions backstage. Beak is responsible for some of the hardest lavabangers in hip hop, period. Catchy, rib-crushing, filthy.

In his basement workshop, Beak works mostly with a MPC2000XL. He layers propulsive, hard-hitting drums with driving guitar and keyboard melodies. He paces after the addition of each element, ducking to avoid the overhead pipes, playing air drums, and calculating his next layer.

Beak’s sequencing is a large part of his sound. “After you’ve got the main structure, to make it a real song, you have to take it all part again. It’s like a battle with the beat, every time.” And Beak always wins. When it’s over, the effect is some helicopter-at-the-omnitheater shit. He’ll take a beat down to its most essential elements before letting it off the leash to explode into anthemic proportions.

Lazerbeak got involved with the Doomtree crew through his high school friendship with Stef (P.O.S). But by then he’d already been playing music for years. Since 8th grade he played with The Plastic Constellations, the indie rock group that would go on to tour the country, signed to French Kiss Records. Stef, having heard Lazerbeak’s music with TPC, encouraged him to start making beats. Beak got a loan from his folks to buy his first MPC from Guitar Center. Stef came over in the afternoon to show him the ropes. No looking back.

To date, Lazerbeak has produced over 400 beats. His production appears on almost every Doomtree release, including all three of P.O.S’ solo albums. He’s now completing the production for the upcoming Sims solo release and working on a solo endeavor of his own.

Most recently, Doomtree released Lazerbeak’s collaboration with Mike Mictlan. The two schemed for years to write and record the disc. For much of that time Mike was living in L.A. Lazerbeak sent Mike beat CDs in the mail. Mike rapped his verses to Lazerbeak over the phone. Big dreams, big phone bills. Now the fruit of their labor is available in all its glory as Hand Over Fist. Legend Recognize Legend.

Releases

Hand Over Fist (with Mike Mictlan)

Legend Recognize Legend

Bad Time Zoo (with Sims)

LAVA BANGERS

Lazerbeak's Blog

Tuesdays With Lazerbeak

Posted on March 04, 2014

Welcome back to Tuesdays With Lazerbeak! We’ve got an INSANELY AWESOME P.O.S Health Update to start things off today, so let’s get right into it. Here’s a very special message straight from the man himself that we recorded at last night’s crew meet up. Check it out:

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Yes, you heard that right: Stef has found a donor match and will be going in this Thursday for a kidney transplant! It’s been a long road up until this point, and we’d like to thank every single one of you for the outpouring of support over the last year and change. Whether you donated some bucks, sent kind words of encouragement, or showed up at shows along the way, it has all meant a serious TON, frreal. We’ll definitely keep you posted on his recovery throughout. SO PUMPED THIS IS FINALLY GOING DOWN. Here’s a couple of awesome Stef pics, just because. Love this cool guy too much.

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Alright, keeping up with the general theme of EXTREME CELEBRATION (ahem, Segue Streak) let’s get into the Bonus Jam of the Week a little early today. It is truly LAVA BANGER certified and Legend God approved. I could not be more happy to announce that Get Cryphy has just dropped their brand new GAME 6 megamix! YES! Quick reminder: Get Cryphy is an insanely talented DJ crew from these parts consisting of Plain Ole Bill, Jimmy 2 Times, DJ Fundo, and Last Word. They are THEE BEST. Every year they drop a different megamix in celebration of their annual anniversary party at First Ave, and they have never disappointed, not once. The dudes crammed in over 200 tracks into this one, with exclusive drops from local favorites St. Paul Slim, MaLLy, Rapper Hooks, and Haphduzn, plus the usual awesome movie quotes and even some choice Chicago Bulls dynasty clips. How can you go wrong? Stream and downlaod GAME 6 below.

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Speaking of that annual party at First Ave, the Get Cryphy Six Year Anniversary show is going down this Friday (3/7) in the Mainroom. This year the dudes are bringing in special guests Big Freedia and Spank Rock (!!!!) to join in the festivities (plus a ton of unannounced performances per usual). Check out this great video for the show below, created by the Legend God of Promo Videos himself: Young Baby Ander Other! NEXT LEVEL.

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BANG BANG BANG. Click the flyer below for ticket info and all the sweet deetz.  This show is gonna rule so hard.

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OK, I think that’s about all the excitement that this post can take. I’ll leave you with a couple of Bonus Penny Pics to round things out. She was feeling pretty bad about chipping my tooth last week, and offered to put on her big boy boots and shovel the sidewalk as a peace offering. I appreciated her acknowledging that she was in the wrong, and gladly accepted.

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Here’s a pretty provocative pose from one of the world’s leading fashion forward DIVAS. Designers take note: open pajamas, car keys, and empty gift bags could be very popular items this Spring.

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With the impending TWINZ due date only eight days away, we’re trying to get as much quality Penny solo time in as possible. Here’s the whole gang watching Little Mermaid for the first time ever, which definitely reinforced my belief that “What do they got, a lotta sand? We got a hot crustacean band!” is the greatest kids lyric ever created. Nothing else even comes close.

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OK, that does it for this post! I hope you all have a wonderful week. If you think about it and get a second, send some super positive vybez Stef’s way this Thursday as he goes in for surgery. We’ll all be wishing him a safe and speedy recovery, and will definitely keep you posted on his progress throughout. See you next Tuesday!

– Beak

Twitter: @_LAZERBEAK

Instagram: @lazerbeak

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Tuesdays With Lazerbeak

Posted on February 25, 2014

Welcome back to another Tuesdays With Lazerbeak! There’s a ton of stuff to talk about today, so let’s jump right in with a few Doomtree-related shows going on in the Twin Cities this week. First up: P.O.S will be playing with Marijuana Deathsquads for three consecutive nights as part of their string of Icehouse shows this week. Wednesday they’ll do their Euro set with openers Pony Bwoy, Thursday is the Organ Failure set with Droppers, and Friday will be a rare live performance of the WDELH MDS RMX project (get that album HERE if you haven’t yet). Check out the flyer below and click HERE for all the show info.

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That same Friday night (2/28), our very own Mike Mictlan will be headlining the Reach For The Sky party at the Skyway Theatre in downtown Minneapolis. There are a ton of great rappers and DJs rounding out the event. Definitely something for everyone. Click HERE for more details and ticket info.

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And don’t forget the weekly Commanders Handsome residency every Thursday night at the Loring Pasta Bar with Cecil Otter and Zach Coulter. Word is things have been going so well that the dudes will be extending this improv beat set into the month of March as well! Click HERE for more details.

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Finally, to round out the week (and continue the Segue Streak into infinity) let’s bring it full circle back to P.O.S. Stef will be playing in Milwaukee on Saturday March 1st for the second annual Eastside Music Tour. There are literally one million other bands playing as well. Sounds like a crazy time. Click HERE for all the sweet deets.

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OK, I think we’ve got your week booked out (and then some). That should do it for show updates, now let’s get into some brand new Doomtree-related music! The LIZZOBANGERS international takeover continues to roll on. Lizzo and Sophia Eris have been out in the UK this past week promoting the record and playing a bunch of shows in the area. Lizzo called into BBC1 last week to  world premiere “Faded,” the next single off the album (produced by yours truly). Check out her interview with the legendary Mista Jam AND the newly revamped version of “Faded” below. So excited about this one!

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Fresh off the heels of his newest 20 MIN MIX (grab #16 HERE), Paper Tiger just dropped a sweet new dance remix for our good friend Astronautalis’ song “Dimitri Mendeleev.” Check out the track below and grab Astronautalis’ entire three-song This City Ain’t Just A Skyline EP right HERE.

Alright, before I get into this week’s Bonus Jams I want to give a quick plug to our photographer friend Zoe Prinds-Flash, who has been nominated for Best Twin Cities Music Photographer in a recent City Pages poll. Zoe is behind most of the live show and backstage shots that you see on this site during  the Doomtree Blowout each year, and she’s been working with us for years now. If you’ve got a spare second, definitely go vote for her right HERE. You can check out a cool interview with her (and even more photos) right HERE.

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OK! Time for some awesome Local Bonus Jams. Jack Spencer just dropped his second installment of the Gimme Noise Beat Tape, a monthly mix that highlights a ton of great local producers from this part of the world. February’s edition includes beats from the likes of PC, Bobby Raps, Mike Frey, Mic Titan, Rich Garvey, Mike the Martyr, Tek, and G Mo. I can personally vouch for the insane amount of heat contained in this mix. Check it all out below.

For the rest of this week’s Bonus Jams I’d like to feature a couple of hometown R&B heroes that were running the game back in the early and mid 2000s. I recently dug up a couple of my favorite soundtracks from that era (The Wood and The Best Man specifically) and was reminded of RL, the lead singer of Next (of “Too Close” fame). RL had a short lived but fairly high profile national solo career, which led to his debut album RL:ements (I know you see what he did there). Hadn’t heard it in over a decade, but after revisiting it yesterday I can confirm that it definitely stands the test of time. Still thoroughly confused why the song “Good Love” from The Brothers OST never made the cut. That’s probably my favoritye RL or Next song ever. Anyways, here’s a couple tracks from the album, plus “Good Love” and the Destiny’s Child/Next collabo “If You Leave,” because that song will forever be the best.

RL – “Good Man”

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RL – “Ghetto”

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RL – “Good Love”

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Destiny’s Child featuring Next – “If You Leave”

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NEXT up (ha), is a little lesser known name outside of this region: J. Isaac. I remember hearing him on KMOJ a bunch in the mid-2000s, and grabbing a mixtape of his at Cheapo around that time as well, but it was his 2006 solo album Welcome To The Planet that seemed to have the biggest impact nationally. It’s probably best known for the track “How I Roll” which featured Juelz Santana (Dipset was on top of the world at that time) – one of the only songs by a local artist that I ever heard B96 (our big rap/R&B station at the time) give a serious push. Anyways, I listened to the whole record yesterday and aside from being incredibly solid, it also contains some of the best kid skits I’ve ever heard. Check out a couple songs below. In my opinion, both Welcome To The Planet and RL:ements are certified MN classics.

J. Isaac – “Do Or Die”

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J. Isaac featuring Juelz Santana – “How I Roll”

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J. Isaac featuring Slum Village – “Baby Ez Up”

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J. Isaac – “Happy 2 B Here”

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Alright, that ends this installment of Classic Local Bonus Jams. Hope you enjoyed it. I’ll leave you with a couple Bonus Penny Pics to round things out. We are officially about two weeks out from the TWINZ due date and things are getting pretty out of control here at the Mader household. I think Penny can sense the impending arrival of her brothers because she has been acting out like never before, taking the DIVA nickname to a whole new level. Case in point: She totally chipped my tooth on Sunday with her toy flashlight while we were playing the “flash a light at Dad’s face” game. NOT COOL PENNY.

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I of course (begrudgingly) forgave her, and we seem to be cool again for the time being. Just gotta stay on her good side I guess. Here’s a couple pictures of Penny in happier times last week. She loves playing this crazy whistle/flute thing over at my mom’s place. Note the fashion forward pink rope chain around her neck. TRENDSETTER.

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And here she is continuing to work on her world famous Goldfish Cupcakes. These still need some tweaking, but she seems determined to perfect the recipe.

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BAM! OK, that for real does it for this post. I hope you all have a wonderful week, and I’ll see you next Tuesday for sure!

– Beak

Twitter: @_LAZERBEAK

Instagram: @lazerbeak

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Tuesdays With Lazerbeak

Posted on February 18, 2014

Welcome back to Tuesdays With Lazerbeak! It’s a big news day today, so let’s get right into it with some new music. Paper Tiger has just blessed us with the 16th volume of his classic 20 MIN MIX series! Check out the new “Cold Winter” mix below and click the album cover for links to his previous 15 selections (gems abound).

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Now that you’ve got some sweet music playing in the background, let’s move on to some big show news. Dessa just announced a string of dates throughout the Midwest this April with her full live ensemble, kicking off with a special hometown show here in Minneapolis! They’ll be hitting cities in Iowa, Wisconsin, Michigan, Illinois, and Minnesota throughout the rest of the run too. Check out all the details below, or click HERE for ticket info.

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Date City Venue Country
08.04.14 Dessa in Lutsen, MN Papa Charlie’s United States
Time: 8:30pm. Admission: FREE. Age restrictions: All Ages. Venue phone: 218-406-1320. On Monday evenings, Papa Charlie’s transforms into a listening room showcasing the Midwest’s top songwriters in a theater-like setting. The intimate room and great sound gives the audience an opportunity to immerse into the stories and craft of the song. Please Note: In an effort to create the listening room environment, we ask all guests in the main room to limit conversation during the performance. Guests looking for casual dining and conversation may be seated in the adjoining Mountain View Grill. It’s free every Monday night at 8:30 PM
09.12.14 Dessa in Ames, IA DG’s Tap House United States
Time: 8:00pm. Admission: $12/$15. Age restrictions: 21+. Address: 125 Main St. Venue phone: (515) 232-1528. Buy tickets
09.13.14 Dessa in La Crosse, WI Cavalier Theater & Lounge United States
Time: 8:00pm. Admission: $15/$17. Address: 114 5th Ave N. Tickets on-sale FRIDAY, JULY 18th at 12:00pm Buy tickets
Tour: Dessa/Why? September 2014
09.18.14 Dessa in Pontiac, MI The Crofoot Ballroom United States
Time: 8:00pm. Admission: $15. Age restrictions: All Ages. Address: 1 S Saginaw. Venue phone: 2488589333. on tour w/ WHY? Buy tickets
09.19.14 Dessa in Toronto, ON Lee’s Palace Canada
Time: 9:00pm. Admission: $17. Age restrictions: 19+. Address: 529 Bloor St W. Venue phone: 416-532-1598. on tour w/ WHY? Buy tickets
09.20.14 Dessa in Montreal, QC Vitrola Canada
Time: 8:00pm. Admission: $18/$20. Age restrictions: 18+. Address: 4602 St-Laurent. on tour with WHY? Buy tickets
09.21.14 Dessa in New York, NY Le Poisson Rouge United States
Time: 7:00pm. Admission: $20/$22. Age restrictions: All Ages. Address: 158 Bleecker Street. Venue phone: 212.505.FISH. on tour w/ WHY? Buy tickets
09.22.14 Dessa in Philadelphia, PA Union Transfer United States
Time: 8:00pm. Admission: $15/$16. Age restrictions: All Ages. Address: 1004-26 Spring Garden Street. Venue phone: 2152322100. on tour w/ WHY? Buy tickets
09.23.14 Dessa in Washington, D.C. Black Cat United States
Time: 8:00pm. Admission: $15. Age restrictions: All Ages. Address: 1831 14th St. Venue phone: (202)-667-4490. on tour w/ WHY? Buy tickets
09.25.14 Dessa in Pittsburgh, PA Altar Bar United States
Time: 7:00pm. Admission: $13/$15. Age restrictions: All Ages. Address: 1620 Penn Avenue. Venue phone: (412) 263-2877. on tour w/ WHY? Buy tickets
09.26.14 Dessa in Cincinnati, OH Midpoint Music Festival United States
Time: 8:00pm. Admission: $15. Age restrictions: All Ages. Address: 1230 Elm Street. Tickets on sale: Friday, July 25 @ 10:00 A.M. Buy tickets
09.27.14 Dessa in Chicago, IL Lincoln Hall United States
Time: 9:00pm. Admission: $20. Age restrictions: 21+. Address: 2424 N Lincoln Ave. Venue phone: 773-525-2501. on tour w/ WHY? Buy tickets
09.28.14 Dessa in Chicago, IL Lincoln Hall United States
Time: 7:00pm. Admission: $20. Age restrictions: All Ages. Address: 2424 N Lincoln Ave. Venue phone: 773-525-2501. on tour w/ WHY? Buy tickets

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Speaking of that Minneapolis send off show, it will be held at the intimate New Century Theatre, with a capacity of only 270 people. Tickets for this one will fly. If you want access to the fan pre-sale you can join the Doomtree mailing list right HERE. We go easy on you with updates, promise. Click the flyer below for even more info on the event.

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In other show news, don’t forget that our very own Mike Mictlan will be headlining the Skyway Theatre in Minneapolis next Friday the 28th for the Reach For The Sky party. Check out show details and ticket info right HERE.

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Then the very next day, P.O.S will be playing in Milwaukee for the second annual Eastside Music Tour with Why? and a million other bands. Click the flyer below, or go HERE for ticket info and details.

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And there’s still two more chances to catch the improvisational sounds and beats of Commanders Handsome (Cecil Otter + Zach Coulter), as part of their weekly Loring Pasta Bar residency every Thursday in the month of February. Check out details and ticket info right HERE.

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OK, I think that about does it for show updates. In other music news, I stopped by the MPR studios last week with Lizzo and Sophia Eris for an extensive interview and special LIZZOBANGERS in-studio performance on The Daily Circuit.

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You can listen to the entire interview and performance right HERE, and check out this in-studio video performance of “Paris” courtesy of the always great Nate Ryan.

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And now to kick off the Bonus Jams of the Week: Our good friend Psalm One from Chicago recently put out a new album under the alias Hologram Kizzie, and I contributed a beat to the project. Check out the single for “Another Voyeur” below, and click the album cover to listen to the entire Hug Life album over on Bandcamp.

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Here’s a Video Bonus Jam from the record for a track called “A New Phaze,” featuring Tanya Morgan with production from Hood Internet.

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What a perfect opportunity to SEGUE (STREAK!!!) into a bunch of other Bonus Jams that I’ve been feeling as of late. This round is pretty all over the place, with a mix of local and national acts. Enjoy!

Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks – “Houston Hades”

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Spark Master Tape – “All I Know”

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No Bird Sing – “APOGEE”

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Isaiah Rashad – “R.I.P. Kevin Miller”

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Speedy Ortiz – “Everything’s Bigger”

Toki Wright & Big Cats – “A Future For The Present”

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Medium Zach – Valued Input EP

Allan Kingdom – “The Dwelling/Good Problems”

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ShowYouSuck – “Flip Phone”

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Taj Raj – “Change of Mind”

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So many jams. Alright, let’s wrap up this super long post with a couple of Bonus Penny Pics! Here she is on Valentine’s Day showing off a very festive new wardrobe. Matching socks and everything, nice one Mom.

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And here she is once again tending to the needs of one of her many toy siblings. Boding well for the introduction of these TWINZ next month.

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And lastly, a shot of Penny thoroughly enjoying the Trombone Shorty NBA All-Star Game Halftime Show (especially the Earth Wind and Fire / Janelle Monae “Shining Star” set closer). Between this and the Bruno Mars Super Bowl special, this kid’s favorite genre of music appears to be “Halftime Shows.” TRENDSETTER.

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OK, that does it for real. I hope you all have a wonderful week. See you next Tuesday for sure!

– Beak

Twitter: @_LAZERBEAK

Instagram: @lazerbeak

TUESDAYS WITH LAZERBEAK T-SHIRTS AND POSTERS AVAILABLE NOW!!! 

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Tuesdays With Lazerbeak

Posted on February 11, 2014

Welcome back to Tuesdays With Lazerbeak! We’ve got a couple more Doomtree-related shows to announce this week, so let’s jump right into it. Our very own Mike Mictlan will be headlining the Skyway Theatre in downtown Minneapolis on February 28th for the Reach For The Sky party! Check out the flyer below and click HERE for all of the glorious details.

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For those of you in the Michigan area, Dessa will be playing the Capitol City Film Festival in Lansing, MI on April 11th. Check out all the show details and ticket info right HERE.

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And don’t forget that P.O.S will be in Milwaukee on March 1st for the second annual Eastside Music Tour. Details and ticket info right HERE.

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Lastly, our very own Cecil Otter continues his weekly February residency with Zach Coulter as COMMANDERS HANDSOME this Thursday at the Loring Pasta Bar. The dudes will be testing out some of the new production they’ve been working on recently, better referred to as “beat heavy landscapes” in their own words (no rapping, just a heads up). Check out the flyer below and click HERE for more details.

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Alright, that about does it for the Doomtree show updates. In order to continue the Segue Streak well into the new year though, I’d like to talk to you about another show I recently went to (BAM!).

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Last Friday night I attended my first ever arena country concert. I’ve been a sucker for a lot of different new country stuff over the last couple years (blame Rodney Atkins), so it was only a matter of time before something like this happened. The tipping point: I got really into this Kacey Musgraves Same Trailer, Different Park album last year (like obsessively into), and a few months back I found out she was coming to town opening up for country powerhouse Lady Antebellum at the Target Center. Luckily for me, my friend Arlo, who handles all the lighting for the Doomtree Blowouts, also happens to be the main light guy for Lady Antebellum! I harassed him long enough after this year’s Blowout that he finally gave in and said I could watch the show from his booth. After even more harassment, I also convinced my 8-months-pregnant-with-TWINZ wifepiece to accompany me on what could be our last night out in many years. Shouts to her for coming along even though she pretty much hates all country music that isn’t Shania Twain. The show was an experience to say the least. Here are some random highlights from a superbly weird and awesome night.

- Arlo gave us a full backstage tour of the Target Center and the stage. I love all things behind the scenes, so this was a serious highlight (felt like I was in Fade To Black or something). Suffice to say that catering was a bit more fine dining than the usual case of beer and some towels Lazerbeak rider. Also, there are full size posters of all the MN Timberwolves lining the walls everywhere you go.

- No, I did not meet Kacey Musgraves. I walked by her dressing room though, so that pretty much counts right?

- Stood by Arlo as he talked to Lady Antebellum during the fan meet and greet. Big time.

- There were not nearly as many cowboy boots/hats in the crowd as I expected there to be. It was acutally more of a MN Wild crowd vibe than anything else. We must not be quite as fashionably loud up here in the Midwest.

- A super drunk guy in the beer line tried to buy my all access laminate for $100. When I declined he attempted to show me a video on his phone of (his words not mine) “me and my old lady plowing.” Again, I had to decline. Cool phrase though.

- Kacey Musgraves was AWESOME. Her and her five piece band were able to re-create the sound of the album almost perfectly, even in a huge place like the Target Center. Can’t imagine what it would sound like on a club tour. Her transition into Bob Marley’s “Three Little Birds” right out of “Step Off” was not nearly as cringe inducing as it sounds on paper. I also did not mind her saying “Roll up a big fattie” as much as I would if pretty much any other human being had said it.

- Middle opener Kip Moore (of ” Something ‘Bout A Truck” fame) put on one of the most ridiculous performances I’ve ever seen. Think Kiss meets AC/DC meets Nickelback meets some sort of country twang. “It’s Friday NIIIIIIIIIIIIIGHT ya’ll!!!!!!” was uttered approximately 17 times between songs. We’re also fairly positive he sang the lyric “rape your mind” at one point.

- Lady Antebellum are suuuuuuuuper Nashville pros. Hit after hit, in between song banter, Go Pros on the guitars, Go Pros on the catwalk, acoustic guitar singalongs in the middle of the crowd, the pre-requisite Prince cover, etc. They definitely know what they’re doing. Had to leave before the grand finale, but stayed long enough to see “And The Radio Played” and a super awkward all cast performance of Tom Petty’s “I Won’t Back Down” with Kacey and Kip.

- During the band introductions Lady Antebellum’s drummer played Biggie’s “Big Poppa” on an electronic drum machine. That actually happened. Also, they played “Get Lucky.”

- Pretty sure the dark haired bearded guitar player in Lady A (that’s what they call them, guys) is actually MN Timberwolves star Ricky Rubio. Someone should look into that probably.

THERE YOU HAVE IT! My first ever country show review. Here’s a picture of Lady Antebellum starting their set off by the light booth.

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This is the lead singer guy utilizing yet another Go Pro camera to show off everyone in the audience. People seriously lost it at this point.

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And here’s me taking it all in. Enormous shouts to Arlo for hooking this all up and being such a great host. LEGEND STATUS!!!!

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OK, let’s wrap everything up with a couple Bonus Penny Pics to make up for the lack of said pics in last week’s post. She’s been slowly warming up to the idea of two more kids in the family (ONE MONTH AWAY!). Here she is taking care of one of her many dolls in preparation for the TWINZ.

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And here’s what she looks like after a nap. Truly confused at the science behind achieving such a revolutionary hairdo.

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Getting ready for the summer cabin trip. Sprin Break 4 Ever.

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Aaaaaaaand here’s Penny’s crazy bath face. Equal parts hilarious and terrifying. She would stay in the tub all day if we let her.

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OK, that for real does it. I’ll leave you with a couple topical Country Bonus Jams to tie it all together. I hope you have a great week, and I’ll see you next Tuesday for sure!

– Beak

Twitter: @_LAZERBEAK_

Instagram: @lazerbeak

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Tuesdays With Lazerbeak

Posted on February 04, 2014

Welcome back to another Tuesdays With Lazerbeak! We’ve got a couple big events going on this week to talk about, and then I wanted to pay a little tribute to the classic P.O.S album Never Better, which just turned five years old yesterday (CRAZY).

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This Thursday our very own Cecil Otter starts his weekly residency at the Loring Pasta Bar with Zach Coulter (Solid Gold/Gayngs) as Commanders Handsome. The dudes will be playing every Thursday in February, and this will be the first chance to hear what they’ve been working on as of late. Should be a sweet time. Details right HERE.

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Dessa and her full band will be playing their annual show in Lutsen, MN this Saturday at Papa Charlie’s. If you feel like skiing some fresh pow (that’s a ski term, right?) and catching a cool concert AT THE SAME DAMN TIME, this one is most definitely for you. Speaking of Dessa (segue segue segue), that new episode of her show The Lowertown Line just premiered last weekend, with Chastity Brown as the featured guest. If you missed it on TV you can check it out online below.

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Oh, and one more show that just got announced this week: P.O.S will be playing Milwaukee’s second annual Eastside Music Tour on March 1st! Looks like there are about one miiiiiiiiiillion other bands playing as well. Check out the flyer below for all the details and grab your tickets right HERE.

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Aaaaaaaand that leads us right into this five year anniversary celebration of Never Better!!!!!!!

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Hard to believe it’s really been that long since this one came out. Here’s a couple music videos to refresh your memory if you haven’t listened to it in awhile.

“Never Better”

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“Optimist”

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“Drumroll”

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“Purexed”

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And here’s a couple random memories that come to mind when I think back on the making of this album.

- All of those videos were pretty much shot in the same week during an extremely cold winter, in an abandoned warehouse building on the outskirts of Minneapolis. I’m almost positive this is the same place where “F Your Stuff” was shot four years later.

- Stef and I went to demo an early version of the record down in Chicago with our good friend Joel Anderson. It was on this trip that I met F. Stokes (and his friend Marquise), and we started scheming on the idea of making an album together (originally titled That’s The Idea). You can actually hear Stokes’ voice on the “uh uh”s in the hook to “The Basics.”

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- Artist/designer Eric Carlson came with us on that trip and drew crazy drawings the entire weekend. These eventually turned into portions of the album artwork.

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- I gave Stef a beat CD with the “Purexed” instrumental in the basement of the Turf Club during a TPC! show, and told him I had been making some weirder stuff as of late that I couldn’t really hear anyone rapping on. That one ended up being the first beat he picked from me and shaped the direction I took the rest of my beats for those sessions.

- “Let It Rattle” originally had a short end verse from the god I Self Devine on it if I remember correctly.

- Some of the elements from “Graves (We Wrote The Book)” come from this awesome song “Piles of Money” by an awesome band called ft (the shadow government), which featured Joel Anderson, who had played in The Vida Blue (later known as Ten Grand), the Iowa City band that heavily influenced Stef and TPC! (first band that ever took us on tour, too many stories to tell here). Sorry that was a seriously jam packed sentence right there. The song title and end hook of “Graves” is actually an homage to the insanely good Ten Grand song “Grave? Shovel. Let’s Go!”. MATT DAVIS FOREVER. Check out “Piles of Money,” “Grave? Shovel. Let’s Go!,” and “Graves (We Wrote The Book)” below.

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- The Never Better Tour was the first rap tour I ever went on, after years of rock tours with TPC! Turns out there really isn’t too much difference, just turntables instead of amps and hotels instead of floors. It was me, Stef, Plain Ole Bill (first time I ever met him!), Sims, Mike Mictlan, tour manager James Lynch, and merch guy Eric Inkala. Mike and I’s Hand Over Fist and Sims’ False Hopes albums had both just dropped as well. BEST TIMEZ EVER.

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OK, there you have it: Ruminations on Never Better. Happy Five Years Stef!

Alright, that about does it for this post. I ran out of Bonus Penny Pics this time around, but to all the out-of-town family members: I will definitely make up for it next time, promise. I hope you all have a wonderful week. Don’t forget you can support Tuesdays With Lazerbeak by grabbing a t-shirt or screenprinted poster over at the Doomtree Webstore. See you next Tuesday for sure!

– Beak

Twitter: @_LAZERBEAK_

Instagram: @lazerbeak

TUESDAYS WITH LAZERBEAK T-SHIRTS AND POSTERS AVAILABLE NOW!!! 

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Tuesdays With Lazerbeak

Posted on January 28, 2014

Welcome back to another Tuesdays With Lazerbeak! Hope everyone is staying as warm as possible in this dreaded Polar Vortex II. It’s not a huge news week over here, so I’m gonna jump into the couple cool things going on this week, and then lay a ton of awesome Local Bonus Jams on you to close things out. Here goes nothing.

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First up, TONIGHT (Tuesday, duh) our good friends at Cinema Purgatorio in Duluth are going to be showing the Doomtree documentary Team The Best Team on the big screen. If you live anywhere close to the Duluth area (and feel like braving the elements), definitely hit up Zinema 2 tonight at 7:00pm. This will be only the second time the film has been played in a real deal theatre. Details and ticket info right HERE. And if you’re nowhere near the area, you can always watch Team The Best Team online right HERE.

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Then this Saturday at 10pm CST the third episode of The Lowertown Line, hosted by our very own Dessa, will premiere on MN public television station TPT (with a rebroadcast directly following at 11pm CST). You can also stream the episode online starting this Friday right HERE. This week’s episode finds Dessa conducting an extensive interview with Chastity Brown. Previous episodes include interviews and performances from Brother Ali and Trampled By Turtles. Check them out below.

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Speeeeeeeaking of Dessa (Segue Streak!!!! – you already know), she was recently asked to participate in the Walker Art Center series 2013: The Year According To_______, in which several different artists, designers, and thinkers create lists of their ten most noteworthy ideas, events, and objects of the past year. Just want to say how thrilled I am that Breaking Bad actually made The Year According To Dessa!!! You can read about that and much more right HERE.

OK! That about does it for pressing news this week. Now let’s get into some serious Bonus Jams!!!! There has been a fairly unrelenting amount of great local music pouring out of the Twin Cities as of late, so this week’s edition is going to be strictly local. First up is a new video from K.Raydio and Psymun’s recently released collabo album LucidDreamingSkylines. Really love this song and video (shouts to SwayHeavy on another great vizual). Pumped to hear more of the record.

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Our good friend Sean McPherson (bassist for Dessa and Heiruspecs) just released a brand new solo album last week under the name Twinkie Jiggles Broken Orchestra. I know this project has been in the works for a long time, and I’m super happy to see it out in the world. Check out the video for “Hi, My Name Is Ana” below, featuring the very talented Ashley Gold on vocals, and grab Too Big To Fail right HERE.

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On the heels of releasing their first collaborative full-length, Toki Wright & Big Cats recently dropped the unreleased track “For Amiri Baraka,” in remembrance of the late great poet-playwright-activist-author. Check it out below, and be on the look out for Pangaea dropping later this year.

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Polica (I can never figure out how to type that cool “c”) just dropped a really great video for Shulamith standout track “I Need $,” with a special outro of “So Leave” attached as an added bonus. Check it out below.

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And since they’re touring with Polica in Europe currently, I’m gonna go ahead and drop that new Marijuana Deathsquads “Ewok Sadness” video on you for the second week in a row, because I firmly stand behind the fact that this is the greatest music video ever created.

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Same thing goes for this new unreleased Lizzo song that I’ve already previously posted. We played this one for the first time at First Ave last weekend and it was a definite highlight. Check out “Paris” below, produced by myself and Ryan Olson (AKA Camry Guyz), and help us spread it around if you have a second.

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The Hold Steady (still a local band to me) dropped the first single for their upcoming album Teeth Dreams last week. I really like this new song A WHOLE LOT. Check out “I Hope This Whole Thing Didn’t Frighten You” below. Can’t believe it’s really been four years since the last record. PUMPED.

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And lastly, here’s an entire Bonus Mixtape Jam for you, courtesy of Jack Spencer over at Gimme Noise. Today he started the first in a series of monthly mixtapes spotlighting several very talented up and coming producers from the Twin Cities (there are seriously a ton of them). This month showcases instrumental works from Psymun, Amatia, Sloslylove, Ackryte, Damacha, Adept, O-D, 1990, and Connye. Definitely check this out if you have some time, and read more about each individual producer right HERE.

 

Alright, that about does it for this extended edition of Local Bonus Jams. I’ll leave you with a couple of Bonus Penny Pics before calling it a day. She’s been hard at work in her new kitchen cooking up some pretty insane culinary dishes. Here she is getting prepped and ready to measure out only the finest of ingredients.

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Fast forward a bit. Here’s Penny dishing out some of her world famous Quiche Pizza Burgers. Note the extreme attention to detail (and the bottle of what I presume to be kids hot sauce in her left hand). I think we may need to get the Food Network involved (Year of the Endorsement Deal Forever).

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After a long day slaving over the stove, there’s simply nothing better than letting loose a little bit in a crazy bouncy structure. WORK HARD, PLAY HARD.

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OK, that does it for real. Don’t forget about the brand new Tuesdays With Lazerbeak t-shirts and screenprinted posters in the webstore (HERE), if you feel like repping this Blog Lyfe at all. I hope you all have a wonderful week. See you next Tuesday!

– Beak

Twitter: @_LAZERBEAK_

Instagram: @lazerbeak

TUESDAYS WITH LAZERBEAK T-SHIRTS AND POSTERS AVAILABLE NOW!!! 

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Tuesdays With Lazerbeak

Posted on January 21, 2014

Hey! Welcome back to another regularly scheduled Tuesdays With Lazerbeak. Big shouts to Dessa for holding down the blog last week while I was out of town working on the next Lizzo record. We’ve got a ton of Doomtree-related events coming up here in January and February, so let’s get right into it!

First up, Sims is headlining the annual Beer Dabbler Winter Carnival this Saturday down at the MN State Fairgrounds. You can grab tickets right HERE and check out more info on the sweet flyer below.

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Our good friends at Cinema Purgatorio will be presenting a movie screening of the Doomtree documentary Team The Best Team in Duluth next Tuesday. Definitely a rare opportunity to catch the film on the big screen. More details and ticket info available right HERE.

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Dessa will be back in Lutsen, MN on February 8th for her annual show at Papa Charlie’s. You can check out all the details and grab tickets right HERE.

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Cecil Otter has teamed up with Zach Coulter (Solid Gold/Gayngs) to form a new creative partnership of sorts called Commanders Handsome. The dudes will be down at the Loring Pasta Bar every Thursday night in the month of February. Residency details and ticket info right HERE. Super excited to see what they’ve been working on.

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I’ll be down at First Ave this Friday night performing with Lizzo for The Current’s 9th Annual Birthday Party. The show is sold out, but hopefully we’ll see a bunch of you down there. In case you missed it, Lizzo dropped a new unreleased song last week called “Paris,” produced by myself and Ryan Olson. SPIN debuted the track online, and then the HBO show Girls featured it in their newest episode on Sunday night. THEEE BEST. You can check out the track below, or grab it from iTunes HERE if you’re feeling it.

 

And speaking of new music (SEGUE STREAK 2014!!!), Marijuana Deathsquads, the insanely sweet band featuring our very own P.O.S, just dropped a new vizual for their track “Ewok Sadness.” THIS IS BY FAR THE GREATEST MUSIC VIDEO THAT HAS EVER BEEN MADE!!!! Huge shouts to director Isaac Gale for achieving such a feat. You really gotta see this thing to believe it.

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Consider that the best Video Bonus Jam you’ll probably watch all year. SO GOOD. I’ll leave you with a handful of Bonus Penny Pics to wrap everything up. This kid has been loving the insane amounts of snow up here in Minneapolis recenlty. Here she is in the backyard rocking some sweet hot pink snow pants and ginormous adult winter gloves at the SAME DAMN TIME.

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We’ve been trying to prepare Penny for the impending arrival of these TWINZ, so for Christmas she got two little boy baby dolls to take care of. Here she is carting one of them around in a stroller like a good big sister.

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And here she is attempting to drown the other one in the bathtub. Probably gonna have to work on this a bit.

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Hard to stay mad at her with such an innocent face like this though. No one’s perfect I guess. Love the robot PJs too.

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Alright, that about does it. I hope you all have a great week. Don’t forget, you can show your support for the blog by picking up an official Tuesdays With Lazerbeak shirt or screenprinted poster from the Doomtree Webstore right HERE. See you next Tuesday for sure!

– Beak

Twitter: @_LAZERBEAK_

Instagram: @lazerbeak

TUESDAYS WITH LAZERBEAK T-SHIRTS AND POSTERS AVAILABLE NOW!!! 

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Tuesdays With Lazerbeak

Posted on January 07, 2014

Welcome to the very first Tuesdays With Lazerbeak of 2014! I hope you all had a relaxing holiday time and a wonderful New Year. We’re gonna kick off 2014 right with a bunch of newly available merch from our webstore. To celebrate the FIFTH YEAR of this blog’s existence, I decided it might finally be time to print up some official Tuesdays With Lazerbeak gear. Introducing the first ever Tuesdays With Lazerbeak t-shirts and screenprinted posters!

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So here’s the deal: I’ve wanted a TWL shirt for a really long time, but had no idea what to put on it. Then a few months back, while on vacation in New Orleans, I had a vision in the shower: Make a list of all your favorite things in the whole world and get your great friend Matt Scharenbroich to draw all of them hanging out together in one place! Pretty much all the stuff that I talk about here on a weekly basis, from the actual human beings that I love and create music with, to my favorite celebrities and fruity malt beverages.

That’s why I have Doomtree, TPC!, Lizzo, and Mixed Blood Majority hanging out with Luther Vandross and Hall & Oates; Drake and Joakim Noah hanging out with Domino’s Crunch Lava Cakes and LAVA BANGERS shots; Denzel and Nic Cage and The Killers and my pregnant wifepiece and Penny and towels and Camrys and nachos and pizza and Della The Dog and Plain Ole Bill and Arson Only and Finding Nemo and Rodney Atkins and F. Stokes and Guy Fieri and Mike’s Hard Lemonade and on and on!!!

Here’s the t-shirt version that you can grab HERE:

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Aaaaand the poster version that you can grab HERE. 18″ x 24″ French Pop-tone “Hot Fudge” paper, printed at Burlesque of North America.

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INSANELY PUMPED ABOUT THIS DESIGN. If you do read the blog on a semi-regular basis, I hope you’ll consider picking up a shirt or poster. Just think of it as something of an annual subscription fee. I’ve never put up a “Donate” button on the site (because that is the worst), but I do spend hours every week putting this blog together, and selling a few shirts/posters will not only put a couple bucks in my pocket, but also validate the fact that anyone reads this thing in the first place. Again you can grab a shirt or poster right HERE. Truly appreciate you!

We also have a bunch of new Blowout 9 related merch available in the Webstore for the very first time, including these brand new Doomtree scarves, perfect for braving the current -40 degree windchill. Just click the pics below for more details on each item.

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Here’s the extremely limited official Blowout 9 t-shirt, designed by our very own Paper Tiger. These won’t be manufactured again, and once they’re gone, they’re gone.

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Same thing with these official Blowout 9 screenprinted posters, designed by Mike Davis and printed at Burlesque of North America. One crazy monster for every year that the Blowout has been in existence. Only 40 of these bad boys remain.

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Here’s the new Doomtree “Bolt Cutter” shirt designed by our good friend Adam Garcia of The Pressure.

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And the super limited Doomtree “Crust” shirt designed once again by our very own Paper Tiger.

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Plus a few new solo t-shirts as well! Here’s the new sweet Cecil Otter “Coco Cecil” shirt.

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And the official Skeleton Key organic t-shirt that Dessa had on the road with her that last run. This is our first foray into organic shirts, and they turned out awesome.

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And lastly, after years of constant demand, we finally have our very own No Kings shoelaces! Haha, couldn’t resist.

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Alright, so there you have it: our first new gear line of 2014. Again, you can click HERE to head over to the Webstore and check out all the details.

There are a couple cool Doomtree-related events taking place in the next couple weeks. First up, Sims and Astronautalis are teaming up to play The Garage in Burnsville, MN this Saturday (1/11). This is a benefit show put on by the MN Music Coalition, with all proceeds going to the To The Bridge Foundation. Definitely a great cause and a great lineup. Details below. Grab your tickets HERE.

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Then on January 28th, Cinema Purgatorio (the company that helped release Team The Best Team on all digital formats) will be hosting a special Team The Best Team movie screening in their hometown of Duluth, MN at Zinema 2. If you’re nearby you’ll definitely want to check this out, as it is only the second time the movie will be played in a theater. Details and ticket info are available right HERE, and don’t forget about streaming/renting/downloading TTBT online over at watch.doomtree.net!

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OK, that about does it for all the Doomtree news this week. Let’s get into a couple Bonus Jams today courtesy of none other than Stephen Malkmus. For those of you that don’t know, I was pretty much raised on early 90s R&B music, and also (through some strange twist of fate) the band Pavement. I heard Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain at the same time that I was still knee deep in SWV and Tevin Campbell tapes, and somehow something just clicked. This led to a head first dive into all things 90′s indie rock, which is why I got into playing guitar, which is where my first band The Plastic Constellations came in the fold, which eventually led to me making beats and my current musical “career” as we know it.

Anyways, I don’t know if I’ve ever liked a band or artist in the moment as much as I liked Pavement in junior high and high school (currently The Killers come close, but I’m old enough to know better). In 8th grade I wore a different Hi My Name Is sticker for four months straight with numbers counting down the release date of Pavement’s Brighten The Corners album, and that’s honestly probably not even anywhere close to the most embarrassing Pavement fanboy story I was involved in at the time. Let’s just say that I thought they were a good band and leave it at that.

So full circle: Stephen Malkmus was the guitarist and lead singer of that group, and he has now gone on to release even more albums as a solo artist than when Pavement was around. They’ve each been pretty all over the place, but I still check for them due to some strange loyalty I have for the man, and there’s always at least a handful of cool songs on each one. I don’t know if I’m just in a nostalgic mood lately or what, but for some reason I’ve really loved the two singles from this new album, and have been slowly getting SERIOUSLY AMPED for the thing to drop. The record comes out today, and I’m about to go grab it as soon as I’m done writing this. Just wanted to pay a little respect to a dude that I now realize is kind of the reason I ever got into making music in the first place. Here’s the two videos from Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks’ amazingly titled Wig Out At Jag Bags album, which you can grab on iTunes right HERE. Hope you (and I) like it.

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BAM! That concludes this week’s Indie Rock Reminiscings section. I’ll leave you with a couple Bonus Penny Pics, since I skipped a week or two there with the Year In Review post. Here she is on Christmas morning rocking her best duds. Love this one.

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And here she is later on with her two crazy grandpas. I’m starting to draft a script for the pilot of this potentially hilarious sitcom scenario.

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And finally, here’s Penny just last night. Somebody haaaaaad to stay up late and watch the exciting conclusion of the BCS era with Dad. I don’t blame her I guess, that second half was INSANE!!!

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Alright, that’s a wrap for the first post of 2014! I hope you all have a wonderful week. STAY WARM, and don’t forget about those new TWL shirts and posters in the Webstore. See you next Tuesday for sure!

– Beak

Twitter: @_LAZERBEAK_

Instagram: @lazerbeak

DOOMTREE 2013: The Year In Review

Posted on December 31, 2013

Hey, welcome to theeee final Tuesdays With Lazerbeak post of 2013! It’s been a very memorable year for many reasons, so I decided to compile one big last minute list of all the wide ranging Doomtree-related music that came out in 2013, just in case anything slipped through the cracks over this action-packed year. Without any further ado, I present to you:

DOOMTREE 2013: THE YEAR IN REVIEW

JANUARY

January saw the debut album from Mixed Blood Majority, the new project from Crescent Moon of Kill The Vultures, Joe Horton of No Bird Sing, and myself on the beats. Check out the video for “Still Standing Still” below.

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Doomtree’s own Cecil Otter was one of the featured guests on the record. You can hear his verse from “Free Up” below, and grab the whole MBM album right HERE if you haven’t heard it yet.

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I also snuck in a remix of our good friend Bleubird’s track “Down Like Brothers.” Check it out below.

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FEBRUARY

P.O.S dropped the video for the We Don’t Even Live Here anthem “Weird Friends,” and boy was it a weird one. Check out the video below, and grab WDELH right HERE if you haven’t already.

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MARCH

March was the month of Paper Tiger’s 20 MINUTE MIX MARCH series. He dropped three completely different mixes (Spring Fever, Biggie, De La Soul), and they all RULED. You can download each one from Soundcloud players below:

 

 

 

Our friend Longshot dropped the lead single to his album Instant 4 Eternity, produced by yours truly. Check out “Weak” (ft. Rachel Jihan) below.

 

 

APRIL

We rolled out Dessa’s huge Parts of Speech album announcement in April with the debut of her lead single, the Paper Tiger-produced heater “Warsaw.” Check out the lyric video below. This was just the beginning.

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MAY

May saw the announcement of a very special one-off show at First Avenue between Sims and good friend Astronautalis. To celebrate, Sims dropped his new single “This Is The Place,” featuring guest vocals from Astronautalis and killer production from our very own Cecil Otter. Check it out below, and grab the song digitally HERE.

 

And check out this great recap video from the First Avenue show, which featured sets by Greg Grease, Mixed Blood Majority, and an incredible collabo set from Sims and Astronautalis.

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Speaking of Mixed Blood Majority, we dropped a video for our Toki Wright-assisted single “Story To Tell,” with a tip of the hat to Minneapolis’ annual May Day Parade at Powderhorn Park. Check it out below.

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JUNE

June was all Dessa. After months of lead up, we finally dropped her brand new full-length album Parts of Speech, which features production from Paper Tiger and myself, as well as several new songs written with her all-star band. Check out the Paper-Tiger produced “Call Off Your Ghost” video below, and grab Parts of Speech right HERE if you haven’t yet.

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Papes was a busy man this month. In addition to producing three tracks on Parts of Speech, he also found time to release his collaborative project with our longtime friend F. Stokes. Papes on the beats, Stokes on the raps. You can check out the video for smash hit lead single “Shaka Zulu” below, and grab the whole Fearless Beauty album right HERE.

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JULY

In July our very own Mike Mictlan dropped an awesome video for the SNAXXX standout cut “WZRD Science.” The song and video feature great guest spots from our friend Greg Grease. Truth be told, I think this was my favorite video of the whole year. Check out the video below, and grab SNAXXX in its entirety right HERE.

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Producer extraordinaire Ryan Olson and I dropped a Parts of Speech remix for Dessa’s “Call Off Your Ghost” under the production moniker COMMITTEE. Check out the track below, and grab it digitally HERE. Tons more COMMITTEE stuff coming in 2014.

 

I also put out a remix for our Chicago homie ShowYouSuck, off of his OMPP4: Slice After Death project. Check out “House of Yes” below, and grab the entire remix album for FREE.99 right HERE.

 

 

AUGUST

To celebrate our August headlining show at Icehouse (hosted by Lizzo), Mixed Blood Majority dropped a brand new song featuring (guess who?) LIZZO! See how that all works? Check out “Keep Diggin” below, and grab it digitally HERE.

 

 

SEPTEMBER

Speaking of Lizzo, September saw the release of “Batches & Cookies,” the lead off single from the forthcoming LIZZOBANGERS album. Lizzo and Sophia Eris on the raps, Beak on the beats. Help us get this one to 100k views, we’re so close!

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Our very own Mike Mictlan popped up on Breakfast With Doctor Gonzo, the new album from Indyground vets Steddy P and DJ Mahf. Check out “Vicious Cycle Circles” below, and grab the whole album right HERE.

 

Cecil Otter and I landed a remix on the new Matt and Kim Lightning Remixes album, alongside heavy hitters such as Bonde de Role and Anamanaguchi. The streaming link appears to have been taken down, but click the image below to check out all the tracks, and purchase the album right HERE.

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OCTOBER

October was totally insane here in Minneapolis, with so many huge local albums dropping this month. To kick everything off, we released the debut 7″ from Four Fists, the new collaborative project from P.O.S and Astronautalis. Check out the video for “MMMMMHMMMMM” below, and grab the extremely limited colored vinyl 7″ from our webstore right HERE.

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Dessa dropped the lyric video to her Lazerbeak-produced Parts of Speech single “Skeleton Key,” and continued to tour the country like a complete maniac. Check out the video below.

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P.O.S put out an entire We Don’t Even Live Here remix album with his awesome band Marijuana Deatshsquads, complete with all new MDS production and brand new verses from himself and one million other rappers. Check out the entire album stream below and download the whole thing for FREE.99 right HERE.

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LIZZOBANGERS, the debut album from Lizzo (with beats by yours truly and executive production from Ryan Olson) dropped at the end of October. Check out “Lizzie Borden” below and grab the whole album HERE. By far one of the funnest records I’ve ever had the opportunity to work on. Super proud of this one.

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NOVEMBER

November was the Month of the Remix. Paper Tiger put out a great remix of Polica’s “Chain My Name” single, off their excellent Shulamith album. Check it out below.

I put out a few remixes for a couple cool rock bands. First up is a band called Ginkgo, the latest project from Josh Grier of Tapes ‘n Tapes fame. Check out the “Faded Glory” remix below.

And next is the Lazerbeak remix for instrumental post-rock band Caspian. Both of these were super fun to do, since I got to take it all the way back to my indie rock roots. Check out “Halls of Summer” below.

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DECEMBER

For the last nine years, Doomtree has owned the month of December here in Minnesota. This year was no different. We kicked things off by releasing our feature full-length documentary Team The Best Team on all digital formats. You can now rent, stream, and download the movie in its entirety over at watch.doomtree.net (or directly from your TV HERE via Amazon Instant Video, if that’s more your thing). To celebrate, we released a music video/extended trailer for the film, cut to the No Kings album track “Team The Best Team” (I know, it’s kind of confusing). Check out the music video below, and make sure to go watch the documentary right HERE.

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Then to close out the year, we rang in our NINTH ANNUAL DOOMTREE BLOWOUT! I always worry whether or not we’ll be able to top the previous year’s Blowout (especially since we’ve been at it for so long now), but thankfully this was the best one yet! We expanded the weekend run to FOUR SOLD OUT NIGHTS this year (an all-ages show at the Triple Rock followed by three nights at First Ave), and it was THEEE BEST. Check out this great recap video of all four nights below. What a perfect way to close out 2013.

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Alright, there you have it! Doomtree 2013: The Year In Review. I hope you all have a wonderful New Years Eve/New Years Day, and that 2014 rules incredibly hard for everybody. Hopefully we’ll see some of you out tonight too for some NYE party action. Dessa is in Chicago at Lincoln Hall with Astronautalis (a handful of tickets remain HERE), and The Men of Doomtree (Mike, Cecil, Sims, Stef, Beak — Papes in spirit) will be down in Des Moines, Iowa for a sold out show at the new Des Moines Social Club. Should be a total blast. Have a great week, and I’ll see you next Tuesday for the first Tuesdays With Lazerbeak of 2014!

– Beak

Twitter: @_LAZERBEAK_

Instagram: @lazerbeak

Tuesdays With Lazerbeak

Posted on December 24, 2013

Hey! Welcome back to one of the final Tuesdays With Lazerbeak posts of the year. Things are finally slowing down just a little bit over here after the very memorable Doomtree Blowout 9 a few weeks back. Our good friends Chris Hadland and Jay Anker, who were on hand for all four nights of the Blowout (shooting and editing recap videos at breakneck speeds), have decided to gift us with one final all-inclusive Blowout 9 Recap Video. This one is for all the marbles. Check out the grand finale of the Doomtree Blowout 9 Recap Videos below!

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SO AWESOME. Still smiling from how much fun that weekend was. Speaking of Chris and Jay (SEGUE STREAK!!!!), you may recall that the two of them were behind the making of Doomtree’s documentary Team The Best Team, which was just released digitally for streaming, renting, and download this past month. We’ve decided to roll out a limited time holiday sale of the movie from watch.doomtree.net, to lend a hand to any of you out there still scrambling to acquire last minute gifts for family and friends. This week only, you can gift Team The Best Team to a loved one for half price! Check it out:

“Need a gift for Grandma, but worried it’s too late? You’re covered! Give the gift of Doomtree, as a stream & download of our movie TEAM THE BEST TEAM. Go HERE, and tap “gift this.” For a limited time, use the code “BEACON” and your gift will be ridiculously cheap – but you’ll still look like like the star on the top of the tree.”

It’s as simple as clicking a button, and definitely beats braving this -11 degree weather to stand in line all day at a mall kiosk. Just click the image below for all the details.

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In addition to all of the holiday insanity going on, this time of year is also known for its onslaught of Best Of lists from pretty much anybody that still listens to music these days. A couple pretty great (and legit) Doomtree-related nods happened recently that I thought were definitely worth mentioning. Check it out.

Get ThIs Is The Place on iTunes today!

Sims’ single “This Is The Place,” featuring guest raps by Astronautalis and production from our very own Cecil Otter, was picked as the Top 5 Hip-Hop Singles of 2013 by LA Weekly! Read all about it right HERE.

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Music critic Stephen Thompson’s (of NPR’s All Things Considered) picked Dessa’s album Parts of Speech as one of his Top 10 Albums of 2013! You can read about all of that right HERE.

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And LIZZOBANGERS, the album from Lizzo and myself, topped the Star Tribune’s 2013 Twin Cities Critic Tally! Having grown up here and religiously reading that list every year, this was pretty big for me. Read all about it right HERE. A bunch of our good friends are in there too! Such a standout year for Minnesota music.

OH! Speaking of LIZZOBANGERS, we’re finally throwing a big time release show for the album this Saturday down at the Triple Rock. Plain Ole Bill and myself (AKA Towel Man & Hungry Guy) will be opening up the show with the second ever in the history of the world LAVA BANGERS set, and then Lizzo is gonna completely destroy it. We’re gonna play the whole album! This night is going to RULE. There are only about 50 tickets left last I heard, so you’ll definitely want to grab those (right HERE) before doors if you’re trying to officially ring in this release with us. Hope to see a bunch of you down there!

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Speaking of year end shows, we’ve got a couple New Years Eve events to cap off 2013. The Men of Doomtree (minus Papes, who’ll be there in spirit) are playing The Bash down in Des Moines, Iowa next week. Tickets are available right HERE.

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And if you’re closer to the Chicagoland area, Dessa and Astronautalis will be at Lincoln Hall that very same night. Details and ticket info right HERE.

OK, that about does it for the news portion of this week’s post. I’ll leave you with a ton of Bonus Jams from my very own Best Albums Of 2013 list. I loved so many records that came out this year, which for whatever reason hasn’t been the case in quite awhile. PUMPED ABOUT IT. Here are my Top 5 Albums of 2013, in order.

#5: Kacey Musgraves - Same Trailer, Different Park

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This one crept in under the radar just in the last month for me. I’ve been a long time sucker for new country, and this album does a great job of blending the catchy production tricks of the current era with songwriting chops and lyrics more reminiscent of some of the older country greats like Loretta and Dolly. Definitely not for everyone, but I seriously can’t stop listening to it. Getting seriously amped for my first ever arena country show in February with Kacey and Lady Antebellum.

#4: El-P and Killer Mike – Run The Jewels 

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Oh maaaaaaaaan. If you’re a rap fan, I know I don’t even have to tell you about this one. Such an incredible collaboration to watch unfold. This record is pretty much flawless, and hard as nails. By far the best duo in the game, from production to bars. The first rap album in too long to slap me in the face and remind me how good this music can be.

#3: HAIM – Days Are Gone

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LOVE THIS ONE. The most amazing and instantly likeable front half of an album since The Weeknd dropped House of Balloons. I definitely see all the comparisons to Stevie Nicks and Phoenix (which I love), but honestly a lot of this sounds like Heart In Motion-era Amy Grant to me, and there is possibly nothing I like more in this world than Heart In Motion-era Amy Grant. Instant classic.

#2: The-Dream – IV Play

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The Dream does it AGAIN. I for real thought it would never get any better than his second album Love Vs. Money, but this one somehow trumps that and then some. No one is making current R&B as innovative and accessible as this guy (it’s not even close), plus the beats BANG so hard. I truly didn’t think anyone else could top this one all year, but……..

#1: Drake – Nothing Was The Same

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I should have known. For years now I have taken quite a bit of punishment for proclaiming my love of Drake records. This one wasn’t as immediately likeable as Take Care to me, but once it clicked I didn’t wanna listen to anything else. He’s only getting better, and 40 completely crushes it all of the production. A few weeks back when I went out on that mini roadtrip tour with Lizzo, we listened to this album about 20 times in a row nonstop and it never got old. THE BEST.

And now for my Honorable Mentions of the Year. Consider these your bonus Bonus Jams.

Volcano Choir – Repave

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Steve Arrington + Dam-Funk – Higher

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Darkside – Psychic

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inc. – no world

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Daft Punk – Random Access Memories

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Speedy Ortiz – Major Arcana

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There you have it! Lazerbeak’s Top 5 Albums of 2013 (and Honorable Mentions).

I’ll leave you with a quick Bonus Penny Pic to satisfy the out-of-town family contingency. Here she is watching my favorite movie ever (Finding Nemo, duh) and playing with my favorite toy as a kid (’85 Bears bear) at the SAME DAMN TIME! And please don’t get it twisted, my grandparents were from Chicago. It’s still Vikes ALL DAY.

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Man I love that kid. Alright, I hope you all have a truly incredible and relaxing holiday week. I cannot wait to get into my Christmas Eve tradition of drinking brandy ciders and watching Love Actually with Penny and the wifepiece tonight. See you next Tuesday for sure. Merry Christmas!

– Beak

Twitter: @_LAZERBEAK_

Instagram: @lazerbeak