Editor’s note: This article was initially published in The Daily Gazette, Swarthmore’s online, daily newspaper founded in Fall 1996. As of Fall 2018, the DG has merged with The Phoenix. See the about page to read more about the DG.
Swarthmore students will crowd into Worth Courtyard tomorrow for the annual Worthstock Concert, hosted by the LSE committee. This year’s show will be headlined by Man Man and will also feature My Brightest Diamond, Pictureplane, Fly Union, and Yukon Blonde.
The LSE Committee began setting up the show in mid-February, starting by contacting potential acts to find out their availability and price. Once a list of performers was assembled (around 60 total), the committee began narrowing down the options to create the ideal lineup.
“The lineup this year ranges from maniacal experimental rock to goth trance to indie folk,” said LSE Committee member Blaine O’Neill ‘11. “Though each artist can be cornered into a different genre, they all share a similar quirkiness and zeal that fits Swarthmore.”
Man Man is an experimental band from Philadelphia known for their energetic and exuberant performances. Their music has been described as “viking vaudeville” and “manic gypsy music,” amongst many other things. They create their unique sound with a wide variety of instruments, from the traditional voices, guitars, and drums to squeaky toys, pots and pans, and cap guns. O’Neill said, “They’re one of the few bands to make consistently challenging and raucous music in Philadelphia. Swarthmore is long overdue our Man Man men!”
My Brightest Diamond
My Brightest Diamond, led by singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Shara Worden, mixes sounds from opera, cabaret, chamber music, and rock. Worden grew up in a very musical family and graduated from The University of North Texas before entering the music scene. She formed My Brightest Diamond in 2003; they have since released two studio albums, and in 2007 they toured with the Decemberists.
Pictureplane is the stage name of Travis Egedy, whose music can be described as electronica. His most recent album, Dark Rift, received a strong review from Pitchfork, the music web site notorious for their critical reviews. Said the review: “Dark Rift manages to extol the virtues of those sugarcoated dance music templates while still working within the parameters of punk DIY. Most of the record feels like a well-curated basement party mixtape; it bounces around enough to keep things ripe… there are enough lo-fi footnotes, grab-bag genre references, and sprightly hooks to draw in a variety of listeners.”
Yukon Blonde is an indie rock band from Vancouver. In 2009 they wrote their first album, which was filled with songs written in the back of their van, and the release garnered several strong reviews from music publications. A review on sputnikmusic.com said, “Their self-titled record is one that’s easy on the ears, light in its message, and transported from a time where the Beach Boys were still commercially successful… This is folk rock cut for the kids”.
Fly Union, from Columbus, Ohio, will add a hip-hop/rap element to the already diverse Worthstock lineup.
This year’s diverse lineup will bring an unprecedented amount of energy to this year’s Worthstock. Ivana Ng ‘12 said that “compared to last year’s Worthstock, this year’s is more energetic. Last year, we had a lot of indie rock/pop acts, so it was a really laid-back atmosphere. But this year, we’ve got a lot of energetic, danceable acts.”
To experience what is going to be an excellent show, be sure to be in Worth Courtyard Saturday when Worthstock kicks off at 1:15 p.m. As O’Neill says, “Weather should be good, food should be free, and the music will be life-changing!”