Olde Club Lineup Focuses on Social Issues and Entertainment

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.

With the help of a survey circulated last semester, student-run music venue Olde Club has come up with a new schedule of acts for this semester. The new lineup attempts to “balance new sounds and ideas in performance with entertainment appeal and a certain social/public engagement,” explained booking director Blaine O’Neill ’11.

Olde Club’s sounds and styles this semester include last weekend’s party-ready Hare Krishna dance music, soulful folk-jazz hybrids, ambient percussion-driven soundscapes, and 60s-inspired rock-pop with a notable homosexual edge. These seemingly disparate selections were made with two things in mind: the musical exploration of complex concepts ranging from politics to gender identity, and a dedication to audience entertainment and involvement.

Here’s a look at Olde Club’s schedule for spring 2011.

Feb. 5: Das Racist, Uproot Andy, MAKU Soundsystem, and Headless Horseman

The night’s headliner Das Racist is already raising excitement in students both on campus and off. The Brooklyn-based rap outfit has garnered a lot of attention in the music world by releasing two highly popular mixtapes (both available for free from the group’s website). The 3-person group (two of whom met at a “students of color for social justice” dorm at Wesleyan Art College in Massachusetts) combines social commentary on race and ethnicity with party beats sure to get audiences moving. As a New Yorker article recently described, “If the band members want you to think about the ways that skin color can affect consciousness, they also don’t mind if you go ahead and party.”

Feb 11: Sweatheart, LE1F, and Andrew Jeffrey Wright

LE1F is the one to look out for here. The recent Wesleyan alum is radically changing the face of rap music, using goth and house-inspired beats to support raw, often risqué lyrics. The Brooklyn rapper’s latest mixtape “Dark York” sold out within the span of a few days. (Two other EPs, one of them free, are available through the artist’s website)

Feb. 19: Sam Amidon, Vio/Mire, and Holy Holy Vine

Inspired by his folk musician parents, Sam Amidon takes a new look at the folk genre, gliding seamlessly from traditional folk music to more unlikely styles like free jazz. The Vermont musician’s distinct voice and heartfelt delivery should win the hearts of audiences (including this one) by the second song.

March 20: Mi Ami and Innergaze

Mi Ami is a rock band turned electronic innovator, and Innergaze is a minimalist techno group with a sound that is “dark like bedroom lighting.” Both should provide for an entertaining performance.

April 8: Soft Circle, Capillary Action, and Mandelbrot Quartet

Soft Circle is a genre-transcending band that seeks to sonically evoke the cyclical patterns of non-Western spirituality. Skilled percussionist Hisham Bharoocha uses loop pedals, traditional drum sets, and backing vocals to create live beats and trance-inducing sounds. Co-billed with Swarthmore’s own Mandelbrot Quartet, this should be a fantastic concert that will be especially attractive to music majors.

April 22: Hunx and His Punx, Shannon and the Clams, Lexi Starr

Describing themselves as “a ’60s garage-rock girl group fronted by a flamboyant gay male,” Hunx and His Punx should be nothing if not entertaining. Expect plenty of stage antics and catchy songs.

You can see more about the artists at Olde Club’s website.

This article originally misspelled the names of the groups Headless Horseman and Sweatheart. They have been corrected above.

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