Posted at 9:24 PM on June 6, 2011
by Julia Schrenkler
From the desks of MPR Digital Media Interns Kjersten Conway & Maddie Butler:
The Current strives to present good music the way it was meant to be heard: live, in its raw, unadulterated splendor. Their studio plays host to acts hailing from every corner of the genre continuum, from local favorites to internationally acclaimed heavy-hitters. It has been said that one can find more truth in a single live set than in an artist's entire catalog, and The Current's in-studio sessions bottle this power and take it to the airwaves.
Check out these recent highlights from the Live Performance Archive:
* In the past few weeks, the studio has been graced with the presence of indie rock outfit the Pains of Being Pure at Heart, local hip hop legends Atmosphere and electronic artist James Blake. The Pains of Being Pure at Heart have a pop sensibility that is at once both blithe and melancholic, and they brought the best of both to The Current studio when they stopped by on April 26th. Their fuzzy guitars and moody, sugar-coated vocals combine to create a uniquely infectious sound, and nowhere is it more apparent than on their live rendering of the exceedingly addictive "Heart in Your Heartbreak." Watch their set.
* Local rap veterans Atmosphere have earned a reputation for creating underground hip-hop of the highest caliber. The duo stopped by the studio to perform material from their first album in over two years, "The Family Sign," and it's easy to see why they have stayed Minnesotan favorites for years. The shockingly dark and personal lyrics layered over echoing guitars and sparse piano notes combine to create a somber landscape that speaks to the complexities of human relationships. Check it out.
* James Blake, amid stripped-down piano and haunting post-dubstep electronics, remains one of only a handful of musicians capable of using auto-tune without sounding cold or contrived. Rather, it transforms his voice - whose striking nature shines through during his live session - into something utterly fascinating, without sacrificing a feeling of sincerity. Hear his fantastic, completely rebuilt cover of Feist's "Limit to Your Love," along with two other songs, here.
And remember to regularly check the archive for the latest stellar performances brought to you by The Current!