Blog Archives

Nutshell Music Group’s 2012: The Year (Or…Seven Months) In Review

Everyone here at Nutshell has been taking some time off in response to the holiday season being upon us, just as we hope you did the same. But before the streamers and fireworks get released and the beginning of a new work calendar is upon us, it’s only fitting that we put together a best of list for those of you that are new to the site (or are already nostalgic). So here are some fun facts about our last seven months as an official publication. But before we get the ball rolling, here’s to wishing you a wonderful 2013.

Nutshell Music Group is born!

With the June 14th review of Walk The Moon’s self-titled LP, Nutshell Music Group officially became a publication.
Album Rating: 89/100
Album Highlights: “Anna Sun”, “Shiver Shiver”, “I Can Lift A Car”

NUTSHELLNutshell: The Logo and The Twitter

On June 18th, we unveiled our new logo, created by John Spiller. Then three days later we officially hit social media, with our Twitter that you can follow @NSMusicGroup.

Nutshell’s First Concert

The site became so much more than an album review site on July 16th, with our first concert review being published on Vampire Weekend’s Pitchfork Performance.
Concert Rating: A
Concert Highlights: Opening with the one two punch of “Cousins” and “White Sky”, an untitled new song now known as “Unbelievers”.

Making Friends

On October 15th Nutshell Music Group officially announced the addition of our newest writer, Bianca Smith. Her first review was posted less than two weeks later.

Opening the Discussion

On December 1st, we started our first full-on discussion topic as we posted our first round of Lollapalooza 2013 lineup predictions. Since then, a large amount of responses have come in and we opened up our Lollapalooza 2013 page.

Bests, Worsts, and Other Notable Things

Highest Rated Album: Matt & Kim – Lightning
Album Rating: 98/100
Album Highlights: “Let’s Go”, “Now”, “I Said”

Highest Rated EP: Go Tell The Eskimo – Smoke Signals EP
Album Rating: 95/100
Album Highlights: “When The Lights Go Out”

Lowest Rated Album: Animal Kingdom – The Looking Away
Album Rating: 73/100
Album Highlights: “Get Away With It”, “Skipping Disc”

Top Viewed Post: Lollapalooza 2013 Lineup Predictions

Most written about artist: Green Day (with a total of three album reviews)

Album We Wish We Reviewed Better: The Tallest Man On Earth – There’s No Leaving Now
Original Rating: 84/100

IMG_0445Nutshell Music Group’s total geek-out favorite band of the year: Stepdad

This one deserves some explaining. This goes to the band that Nutshell Music Group feels is the band that was most enjoyable to deal with. After reviewing Wildlife Pop back in June and then their Beat Kitchen Concert in October, the group has always been fun to watch, listen to, and even talk to in small doses. So a big thank you goes out to the guys in Stepdad for giving us a memorable band to talk about time and time again.

There you have it folks! Have a great time ringing in the new year, and we will be back on schedule with normal reviews after 2013 begins.

Nutshell Concert Review: Vampire Weekend – Pitchfork Music Festival 7/15/12

Photo: Tom Cruze – Chicago Sun-Times

After spending the last few weeks off, Nutshell decided to make a comeback with our first ever concert review. We chose one that would be easy to talk about, and that those of you in the Chicago area may have already heard about.

Vampire Weekend entered this year’s Pitchfork Music Festival at Union Park backed up with only two performances this year (Pitchfork was the third, and is the final scheduled performance for them to date). Festival performances also seemed light years away for the quartet, with frontman Ezra Koenig saying it had been “a looooong time since [they’ve] played festivals” after they stepped onto the Green Stage on Sunday night. And how could they start the set with anything other than two-minute, fast paced Contra track “Cousins” to get the crowd amped up. The band fired through a 16-song set that was capped off with a 4-song encore. Heavily filled with songs from VW’s self-titled debut (the only track from Vampire Weekend that wasn’t featured was “Bryn”), the band looked in top shape, especially considering they’ve barely been on stage this year. The set hit all ends of Vampire Weekend’s spectrum, and it even included the heart-warming “I Think Ur a Contra” and created an amazing atmosphere to finish the show under the night sky. Koenig also promised to fans that after last night’s show, the band was on their way to finish their third studio album, with an untitled new track being played in the middle of the set. The encore was a 4-song backtrack to Vampire Weekend, with all four songs being oldies but goodies.

Vampire Weekend’s Pitchfork set was a solid jumping-off point for Nutshell Concert Reviews, with a great crowd and a set that used the vast majority of the band’s repertoire. The band (keyboardist and guitarist Rostam Batmanglij in particular) got everybody in the audience involved, being sure to keep them on top of all of the “oh”s, “ah”s, and “chah”s needed to make the songs sound spot on. This concert is given an A by Nutshell Music Group. And yes, it was worth braving the sun and 90+ degree heat to see this show up close.

Here’s the setlist for Vampire Weekend’s Pitchfork show, 7/15/12:

  1. Cousins
  2. White Sky
  3. Cape Cod Kwassa Kwassa
  4. M79
  5. Run
  6. Holiday
  7. California English
  8. A-Punk
  9. Horchata
  10. I Stand Corrected
  11. I Think Ur a Contra
  12. Untitled New Song
  13. Diplomat’s Son
  14. Campus
  15. Oxford Comma
  16. Giving Up the Gun
Encore
  1. One (Blake’s Got a New Face)
  2. Mansard Roof
  3. The Kids Don’t Stand a Chance
  4. Walcott
%d bloggers like this: