Live Review: IDLES @ 9:30 Club –10/17/21

IDLES perform at the 9:30 Club in Washington, D.C.
IDLES perform at 9:30 Club on Oct. 17, 2021. (Photo by Kyle Gustafson)

You’d be hard pressed to name a better or more electrifying live band right now than Bristol, England’s IDLES. Hard and fast enough for the punk fans, heavy enough for the metal fans and progressive enough for the indie fans, IDLES hit a sweet spot that no other band can touch right now at 9:30 Club in the first of two-sold out nights on Sunday. Their songs address a wide range of topics such as politics, depression, and toxic masculinity and more importantly give listeners the release that great live music demands.

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Interview: Bob Mould (@ 9:30 Club, 9/18/21)

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Bob Mould Band (Photo courtesy Big Hassle)

When he plays the 9:30 Club on Saturday, Bob Mould will be making a homecoming of sorts. For nearly a decade, he lived in the District, and he has a long history with the club. For a number of years at 9:30 Club, he DJ’ed at a dance party (called Blowoff) for DC’s gay community.

Over his 40-plus year career, Bob covered wide ground and left an indelible imprint on the American musical scene. A native of upstate Malone, New York, Mould left to attend Macalester College in Minneapolis, where he would found the seminal band Hüsker Dü in 1979. A fast, aggressive punk trio, their music was a bridge between the punk era and the alternative and underground scenes that formed in the early to mid ’80s. Their influence was especially potent in their base in the Twin Cities (on the Replacements, Soul Asylum, and Guided by Voices) but extended to bands as diverse as, on the one hand, Dinosaur Jr. and Nirvana, and, on the other, Uncle Tupelo and Whiskeytown. New Day Rising was listed in Rolling Stone’s top 500 albums, and several of their albums are considered classics.

After the breakup of Hüsker Dü, Bob embarked on a solo career, moving into more singer-songwriter oriented territory with the well-received, mostly acoustic Workbook. In the early ’90s, he helmed the alternative band Sugar to some of his most commercially successful work. In the 25 years since Sugar disbanded, he has continued to grow and expand his range, running the gamut from his completely self-made, distortion-filled, eponymous 1996 release, to explorations in electronic music, District’s Lines variety of styles and genres, and more pop-oriented material like Life and Times. As he describes in this interview, his latest record, last year’s Blue Hearts, is a return to his punk roots.

Parklife DC’s Mark Engleson recently spoke with Bob Mould in advance of his show at 9:30 Club on Saturday, Sept. 18. They touched on a number of subjects, including his history with the venue, his creative cycle, and what still keeps him creatively refreshed and moving forward in his career.

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Interview: Willie Nile (@ The Hamilton Live, 8/28/21)

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Willie Nile (Photos by Cristina Arrigoni)

Willie Nile is a man all about New York City, his longtime home. The man about town was in the process of releasing an album about New York City, titled New York at Night, when the COVID-19 pandemic struck the world and put things on hold.

In May 2020, Willie released that album. Not long before he did so, he chatted with Parklife DC’s Mark Engleson. Now, Willie is back with another album about the place he loves to live — The Day the Earth Stood Still, his 14th studio album, which was released on Aug. 13.

Willie is on tour again with a stop at The Hamilton Live in DC on Saturday, Aug. 28. But Parklife has been sitting on this unpublished interview from when Willie was promoting New York at Night. And in this interview, Willie chats about how much he also loves DC. So with no further ado, we present this chat and strongly suggest you catch Willie live at The Hamilton this weekend.

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Preview: Punk the Capital @ The Miracle Theatre, 6/10/21

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HR of Bad Brains: Then and Now (Photo courtesy Punk the Capital)

When punk rock erupted in Washington, DC, it was a mighty convergence of powerful music, friendships, and clear minds. Punk the Capital, a documentary film about DC punk from 1976-83, explores the incredible challenges that this subculture faced when it took root in the Nation’s Capital in the late 1970s.

Catch a screening of Punk the Capital at The Miracle Theatre in DC on Thursday, June 10, at 7pm!

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Song of the Day: Black Flag’s “Nervous Breakdown” by American Television

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American Television (Photo by Craig Hall)

DC punk rockers American Television recently released a new EP, Adolescence, via Wiretap Records, paying tribute to their punk influences with five tracks of covers from Black Flag, Green Day, Bad Religion, Operation Ivy, and Fugazi.

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Around Town: Congrats to the 2021 Wammie Award Winners

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Karen Jonas one the 2021 Wammie Award for Best Country/Americana Artist/Group. (Photo by Jim Williams)

The MusicianShip recognized winners of the 2021 Washington Area Music Awards, or Wammies in a virtual awards ceremony on Sunday.

Parklife DC salutes the 2021 Wammie Award winners!

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Livestream Preview: The Distillers @ Veeps, 12/18/20

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The Distillers (Photo courtesy Cosa Nostra PR)

Legendary LA punk quartet The Distillers announce that they will spread holiday cheer across the land with their aptly named The Distillers Very Special Christmas Special, Baby It’s Covid Outside global streaming event via Veeps on Friday, Dec. 18.

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