If We Shout Loud Enough (Double Dagger documentary) now streaming!

Double Dagger's last show.

Gabriel Deloach‘s documentary about Double Dagger, one of the all-time great Baltimore punk bands, is finally streaming on Amazon. I am biased since I am friends with everyone involved in this project, and contributed photography which appears in the film (and was even interviewed, though I unsurprisingly did not make the cut), but I truly think this is a great music doc and worth watching even if you are somehow going in not knowing who Double Dagger was. It’s full of insightful moments and plenty of great live footage from the band’s last tour, a tour I also documented:

“An inside look at the Baltimore underground music scene through one of its most pivotal bands, Double Dagger, this intimate and entertaining portrait follows the band as they complete their final tour and album, tracing the history and growth of the band and of Baltimore’s underground music scene.”

Streaming on Amazon | Buy the physical LP+DVD

Esperanza Spalding @ 9:30 Club

Esperanza Spalding @ 9:30 Club, DC 4/19/2016
Esperanza Spalding @ 9:30 Club, DC 4/19/2016
Esperanza Spalding @ 9:30 Club, DC 4/19/2016
Esperanza Spalding @ 9:30 Club, DC 4/19/2016

This show was great. I didn’t know much about Spalding going it but it turns out she is quite the performer – both in a musical sense and the dramatic. The concert was more like a musical stage play, performed to a absolutely sold-out 9:30 Club. If you are a fan of her music I would say don’t miss out on the chance to see her live; I thought it was great and I was just some guy off the street, essentially.

Read the Washington Post review here | See all my photos from the show here

Justin Bieber @ Verizon Center

Justin Bieber @ Verizon Center - 4/29/2016
Justin Bieber @ Verizon Center - 4/29/2016
Justin Bieber @ Verizon Center - 4/29/2016
Justin Bieber @ Verizon Center - 4/29/2016
Justin Bieber @ Verizon Center - 4/29/2016
Justin Bieber @ Verizon Center - 4/29/2016
Justin Bieber @ Verizon Center - 4/29/2016

This show was pretty tough. I’ve been to a lot of pop shows over the years and though I rarely enjoy the music, usually artists at the arena or stadium level seem to be pure entertainers, like Usher, vibing with the crowd and their fans, like Ke$ha, or in complete control of the crowd like Kylie Minogue. Not Bieber. He just seemed bored, or something. Not sure if it was an off night or what, but my only thought after walking out of this show was “man, that guy really didn’t want to be up there, did he?” Too bad, because it was a hell of a light show and stage setup, and a full house.

Read the Washington Post review of the show (which echoes much of my sentiments) | See all my photos from the show

Future Islands 1000.

Future Islands @ FI1000
Future Islands @ FI1000
Future Islands @ FI1000
Future Islands @ FI1000
Future Islands @ FI1000
Future Islands @ FI1000
Future Islands @ FI1000
FUTURE ISLANDS

Dan Deacon @ FI1000
Dan Deacon @ FI1000
Dan Deacon @ FI1000
Dan Deacon @ FI1000
Dan Deacon @ FI1000
Dan Deacon @ FI1000
DAN DEACON

Danny Brown @ FI1000
Danny Brown @ FI1000
Danny Brown @ FI1000
DANNY BROWN

Ed Schrader's Music Beat @ FI1000
Ed Schrader's Music Beat @ FI1000
ED SCHRADER’S MUSIC BEAT

Valient Thorr @ FI1000
VALIENT THORR

FI1000
FI1000
Future Islands @ FI 1000
FI1000
Future Islands @ FI1000

Earlier this summer I made the trip down to Carrboro, NC with noted Baltimoreans Kevin Sherry and Mark Brown to watch Future Islands play their celebratory 1000th show. I wrote the following for Noisey:

FUTURE ISLANDS BRING IT ON HOME TO NORTH CAROLINA FOR THEIR 1,000TH SHOW

Future Islands capped off their first 1,000 shows (and a tremendous year) with an all-fam celebration in Carrboro, NC this Sunday, appropriately dubbed FI1000. Not wanting to miss it, I packed into a car with a few other Baltimoreans and road tripped it down there. Though known primarily as a Baltimore band, the boys grew up in North Carolina and started the band there, so it felt right for this party to be down south.
Located at the open air Carrboro Town Commons, the show had kind of a block party or family reunion vibe with a lineup filled with old friends of the band. NC buddies like Valient Thorr and Lonnie Walker, along with Baltimore friend Dan Deacon and Ed Schrader’s Music Beat. Add in Danny Brown and about 4,500 exuberant fans and that’s a recipe for quite a party.

The relaxed atmosphere was pretty perfect for a intimate fest like this, with the artists mingling with the (mostly young) crowd, who seemed appreciative of even the early bands on the bill. But once Danny Brown took the stage, the energy of the crowd spiked sharply, with people dancing exuberantly, grinding, chanting along. The stage fencing almost gave way at more than one point. I don’t think the Carrboro Town Commons security staff had seen a show like this before.

Dan Deacon kept the energy high, performing a set mixed with both new tracks and old classics like Wham City and Crystal Cat. I’ve seen him do his audience participation parts more time than I can count, but it never ceases to amaze me how he can coax a huge crowd into seemingly anything. He also took time to speak about police violence and how it affects us all, the most somber moment of the night but delivered in a classic uplifting and reflective Deacon manner.

All the artists told stories about Future Islands, some dating back to even before they were a band. The anticipation was super high for them to take the stage at dusk. Always charismatic on stage, it was obvious how pleased the guys were to be playing in front of friends and family. Throughout, frontman Sam Herring kept the crowd engaged with anecdotes and stories (told in a Southern accent that grew throughout the night) about their time as a band, growing up in North Carolina, and about the other bands who played. It was a great set, full of both intimate moments and big stage moves – confetti and huge balloons kept the crowd bouncing. They played a packed set which of course included songs like Seasons and Tin Man, but also ranged to older, little heard songs like Pinocchio and New Autobahn, to the obvious pleasure of the crowd. They closed the show out with a promise to return to Town Commons when they hit 2000 shows, though I guess they’ll need a larger venue next time.

VIEW THE FI1000 SET HERE | READ THE STORY ON NOISEY HERE

Marilyn Manson ‘The Pale Emperor’ Tour Opener.

Marilyn Manson @ Fillmore Silver Spring
Marilyn Manson @ Fillmore Silver Spring
Marilyn Manson @ Fillmore Silver Spring
Marilyn Manson @ Fillmore Silver Spring Marilyn Manson @ Fillmore Silver Spring Marilyn Manson @ Fillmore Silver Spring
Marilyn Manson @ Fillmore Silver Spring

I shot and wrote a thing for Noisey about the Marilyn Manson tour opener at the Fillmore… photos above, here is the text:

Yesterday, I got the all-clear to shoot the Marilyn Manson tour opener in scenic Silver Spring, Maryland. After a hiatus of sorts, my generation’s number one shock rocker is back with a comeback album, The Pale Emperor, and this show would be the first chance for live impressions. I’ve never been a Manson fan really; as a teenager, I liked some of the early songs like “Lunchbox,” and once saw him open for Nine Inch Nails, but by the time he hit full superstar mode, I was too busy listening to hardcore and screamo records to care very much about what Brian Warner was getting up to. Still, the guy is an icon—of course I wanted to see his show!

After navigating a line that literally wrapped around the block (later, I was told that concertgoers had started lining up twelve hours before doors), I went in expecting some serious 90s rockstar antics. I wasn’t disappointed. In a set filled with solid hits, Manson’s show also featured multiple costume changes (including four costume changes for the microphone itself), casual cockiness and furious anger at the sound guy, calls for fans to throw drugs on stage (he casually picked up one baggie containing an impressive amount of powder and filed it away in his back pocket for later), a contingent of women with their tops off and Manson lyrics written on their bodies, and of course, calls for the crowd to suck his dick. In true rock star fashion, any time he was done with an object—a microphone, an open bottle of water, a glass of liquor—he just let it drop to the ground, and someone would scurry over there to put it back in its rightful place without the show missing a beat.

After the show—which was entertaining enough to me, a non-fan, to stay until the end—the overall fan reaction seemed pretty ecstatic. One gothy teenager beamed at me and asked if I also thought that it had been the best concert ever. A few people I spoke to did say that they were disappointed with his vocals (though I must say that they sounded generally fine to me). I asked them if they thought that made the concert suck, and one of them replied enthusiastically, “No! Marilyn Manson can’t do a bad show!”

Read WELCOME BACK TO THE DOPE SHOW: PHOTOS FROM MARILYN MANSON’S ‘THE PALE EMPEROR’ TOUR OPENER on Noisey | SEE ALL THE PHOTOS HERE

Marked Men 2-day stand @ St Vitus.

Marked Men @ St Vitus
Marked Men @ St Vitus
Marked Men @ St Vitus
Marked Men @ St Vitus
Marked Men @ St Vitus
Marked Men @ St Vitus
Marked Men @ St Vitus

Earlier this year, Marked Men played 3 shows in two days at Brooklyn’s Saint Vitus. I covered it for Noisey. Great shows, I wish we could have stayed for the third one but no sense being greedy, I suppose. The atmosphere at these shows were great, really intimate, lots of fans from all over there to see one of their favorite bands play with little or no BS. The day show, especially was cool, though less “wild” since people were just waking up/not tipsy, but it gave it a more youthful vibe. Don’t miss a chance to see this band.

See all my Marked Men at St Vitus photos here!

Read the Noisey piece here!

Wash Post round-up: Tori Amos, Orrin Evans, DJ EZ

Tori Amos.
Tori Amos.
Tori Amos.
Tori AmosRead the Washington Post review hereSee all my photos here.

Orrin Evans Quartet @ Bohemian Caverns
Orrin Evans Quartet @ Bohemian Caverns
Orrin Evans QuartetRead the Washington Post review hereSee all my photos here.

DJ EZ @ Flash in DC
DJ EZ – Read the Washington Post review hereSee all my photos here.

I recently covered concerts by Tori Amos, Orrin Evans and UK garage vet DJ EZ for the Washington Post.

Kevin Gates @ the Fillmore Silver Spring.

Kevin Gates @ Fillmore
Kevin Gates @ Fillmore
Kevin Gates @ Fillmore
Kevin Gates @ Fillmore
Kevin Gates @ Fillmore
Kevin Gates @ Fillmore
Kevin Gates @ Fillmore

The other week, I shot Baton Rouge rapper Kevin Gates at Fillmore. I was expecting to be underwhelmed, as most hip-hop shows I go to lately have been fairly disappointing… a lot of the younger artists haven’t been playing shows that long and seem to lack the showmanship you used to see. Not Gates, though. After a slow start, I was pleasantly surprised as he burst into life, stalking back and forth on stage, calm one moment, barely contained energy the next. The crowd ate it up, too. Good show, fun to shoot too, as he kept interacting with crowd members.

See all my Kevin Gates at Fillmore Silver Spring photos here!
Read the Washington Post review here.

Arcade Fire : Reflektor Tour 2014 @ Verizon Center

Arcade Fire @ Verizon Center
Arcade Fire @ Verizon Center
Arcade Fire @ Verizon Center
Arcade Fire @ Verizon Center
Arcade Fire @ Verizon Center
Arcade Fire @ Verizon Center
Arcade Fire @ Verizon Center

I shot the Arcade Fire Reflektor Tour at Verizon Center for the Washington Post. Was a little skeptical at first, having not kept up with them in years, but I thought the show was fun, and fun to shoot. The reviewer didn’t seem to like it much, but I had a good time.

See all the Arcade Fire : Reflektor Tour photos here!
See the Dan Deacon photos from Reflektor tour here!

The Evens feature shoot.

The Evens.
The Evens.

The Evens.   The Evens.

Last month, I shot The Evens (Ian MacKaye and Amy Farina) in their home for Ghetto Blaster magazine, for a feature about their new album. I was a little nervous, unsure how it would be working with Ian, but my worries were totally unfounded – they were both great to work with, friendly, firm about what they wanted, and full of great ideas that made the final product better. A great shoot, and I think the final product came out well!

The Evens - Ghetto Blaster cover tear sheet
The Evens - Ghetto Blaster splash tear sheet

Matmos in the studio.

Matmos in the studio.
Matmos in the studio. Matmos in the studio.
Matmos in the studio. Matmos in the studio.

I spent a pleasant afternoon in Matmos’ Baltimore City studio, photographing them for a recent XLR8R piece on their studio, their gear, and their new album. A really interesting pair of artists, they explained some of their process and a lot of their gear to me, and they even demonstrated the basic concept of how they came out with the concepts and raw material for their new album – having a friend of theirs undergo sensory deprivation and describing the music that he heard (pictured above). A really cool shoot.

XLR8R Matmos feature

Imagine Dragons, Veronica Falls shows.

Imagine Dragons @ Fillmore 2013
Imagine Dragons @ Fillmore 2013 Imagine Dragons @ Fillmore 2013
Imagine Dragons @ Fillmore 2013

Veronica Falls @ Black Cat
Veronica Falls @ Black Cat Veronica Falls @ Black Cat

Two shows I shot for the post, both bands I hadn’t heard before. Imagine Dragons (playing at the Fillmore) were super energetic live, or at least the singer was, but not really to my taste. Veronica Falls (playing at the Black Cat), however, I loved. Very poppy indie rock with melodic vocals… I thought they would fit in opening for the Smiths in the 1980s, or something. Check them out!

Polar Bear Plunge Photobooth

Polar Bear Plunge Photobooth Polar Bear Plunge Photobooth
Polar Bear Plunge Photobooth Captain Dee-Fense - Polar Bear Plunge Photobooth

Every year in Maryland, there is a Polar Bear Plunge to benefit the Special Olympics. It’s grown from a modest event, to one that is huge, with 10,000s of people crowding near the base of the Bay Bridge to watch the brave souls that jump in the freezing cold water. There are bands, contests, and costumes… this year the Baltimore Sun sent me out to take photos of some of the creative costumes of the event. And, as you can see, there was a lot of Ravens pride this year…

You can see all the photos here.

B Weekly “Open Houses” Feature.

<img src="http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8078/8408998800_abc7673a47_c.jpg" width="773" height="800" alt="b Weekly "Open Houses" cover .”/>
Open Houses tearsheet b weekly spread

The photo at the top, of Matt (from Arboretum & Big In Japan) & his partner Lane in their home is from “Open Houses”, a feature I worked on for B Weekly (along with other photographers). The concept was to go into the home of a local musician/artist/creative and make a portrait of them in their home environment, as well as capture some details. Fun little assignment. I suggested Matt & Lane’s place because I’ve always admired how well-decorated it is.

See the rest of the photos I took here, and see the whole feature here.