I hope you get to see the Kilby Court Cuco show opening the Kilby Block Party Friday lineup. He’s so good, I could have included him in my 2022 Top 20 albums. Here’s what you need to know about the bedroom pop singer Cuco + a couple of songs from 2022’s entrancing Fantasy Gateway.
Kilby Court Cuco concert a nice start to Kilby Block Party Friday lineup
The singer Cuco — he uses the handle cucopuffs on the Insta — got his pet name from his mother while growing up in Hawthorne, California. Omar Banos has written lyrics both in English and Spanish since his early releases, Wannabewithu (2016) and Songs4u (2017) as a budding songwriter and Spotify phenom. His bedroom pop full length debut was 2019’s Para Mi.
By 2022, Banos was incorporating more elaborate orchestration on Fantasy Gateway as he felt his way into new territory. You can hear why the Kilby Court Cuco appearance came together. I’m not posturing — this was a favorite album of mine last year.
The intimate “Time Machine” has such a pure singer-songwriter inside that you can’t help but fall in love with the kid.
Sing along Kilby Court Cuco show in Spanish. Singer Cuco is bilingual pop star
One of the reasons I was taken aback by Fantasy Gateway was the sophisticated lyricism you’ll hear at the Kilby Court Cuco show. Sure there are the ridic catchy samples and chorus on last April’s “Caution” … then he steps into a mix of English and Spanish on the smooth R&B-via-soft 70’s “Aura.”
Here is the Spanish verse:
Ves que me causan celos cuando te habla alguien más Nunca te quiero lejos, la distancia me hace mal Eres siempre el tema del que quiero platicar Hechamos fiesta solos, nos ponemos a bailar
…in which the singer Cuco is singing:
You see that they make me jealous when someone else talks to you I never want you away, the distance hurts me You are always the topic I want to talk about We party alone, we start to dance
I expect most of the Kilby Court Cuco show at the Kilby Block Party Friday lineup will be in English. But Utah has plenty of Spanish speakers and returned missionaries to go cukoo for cocoa puffs. I’m looking forward to hearing fully Spanish numbers from the singer Cuco, like the gorgeous “Fin Del Mundo” (“End of the World”).
Be at the Kilby Court Cuco concert. You’ll go cukoo for cocoa puffs
Final note, whether you’re a 19-year-old kid reading this on the Insta or a jaded 50-something like me listening to bedroom pop singer Cuco for the first time…get to the Kilby Block Party on Friday. I recommend Fantasy Gateway without reservation and can’t wait to see him kickstart the Kilby Block Party Friday lineup!
So, good news right now, the only sold out tickets are 3-day Super VIP and Saturday Super VIP. Standard 3-day VIP tickets and 1-day VIP tickets for Friday and Sunday are still out there. Honestly, I’m not sure why I did the Super deal, the standard 3-day VIP tickets include premium viewing areas, re-entry, some kind of access to an overpriced bar, etc. Still a good investment.
Standard VIP for 3 days is $299. General admission for 3 days is $209. Spend the extra $90 believe me. All available right here.
Kilby Block Party SLC parking
It’s not great.
Apparently you can reserve parking during ticket checkout, which I didn’t do. Now that I’ve bought my tickets, I don’t see a way to go back and just pay for parking separately from my ticket purchase.
UPDATE: I found a link for official Kilby parking here. The information was actually included in the fine print of my original e-mail ticket receipt, so I herewith absolve Kilby organizers of parking neglect.
You’re probably going to end up spending $20 or $30 a day on the private lots. You can also take your chances leaving your car at the abandoned Wienerschnitzel and buy a side of Fentanyl on your way in. Or you can park downtown and ride in on Trax.
Lockers serve as a meet up location and storage for merch and approved bags you don’t want to carry all day. Importantly, the locker is also a charging station for your phone after all those pointless, long-range shots over the really tall bros standing in front of you.
The lockers are $20 a day and you clean out your stuff before leaving like a Planet Fitness. For $60, you get a locker for three days and you can leave your leftover gyro in there until Sunday.
Daily schedule for Kilby Block Party 2023 lineup
I hope these lineup and ticket updates are useful. Over the coming weeks, I’ll be posting profiles of some of the artists where you can read and hear their songs before they appear.
Have a question or comment about the Kilby Block Party 2023 lineup or logistics? Email me at the address in the About section of the Zerovu website. You can also subscribe for e-mail alerts below.
Marquee Moon is one of those few albums you’ll always remember hearing for the first time. Now thousands of fans may remember where they were when they heard of Tom Verlaine passing. He was 73.
Music pioneer Tom Verlaine passing away comes as shock
Jesse Paris Smith, the daughter of Patti Smith, with whom Verlaine frequently collaborated, announced his death today after a “brief illness.”
Best known for his groundbreaking work in the influential art punk band Television, Verlaine was an immense influence on the punk rock scene and his death leaves a lasting impression on a generation of fans.
Tom Verlaine, born Thomas Miller on December 13, 1949, had a music career that stretched back to the early 1970s, when he co-founded the influential punk band Television alongside Richard Hell and Richard Lloyd.
The band made a massive impact on the punk scene with their influential albums Marquee Moon (1977) and Adventure (1978). Verlaine released a string of solo albums throughout his career, including the highly acclaimed Tom Verlaine (1979) and Dreamtime (1981).
Verlaine rose to fame as the front man of influential 1970’s band Television
Television formed in New York City in 1973, and quickly made a name for themselves with their unique blend of punk and avant-garde rock. Their debut album, Marquee Moon, released in 1977, is considered a classic of the genre. It was a major influence on the punk and alternative rock scenes that followed.
Verlaine’s guitar technique and lyrical style
Verlaine’s guitar playing was unlike anything else of his time. It blended elements of punk, blues, and jazz to create a sound that was both raw and sophisticated. His use of dissonance and complex chord progressions was a major influence on many guitarists who came after him.
Verlaine’s influence on the music world extends far beyond just his guitar playing. He was known for his poetic and literate lyrics. They often dealt with themes of alienation and urban life. He was also a major influence on the New York City music scene, helping to pave the way for the punk and alternative movements of the 1970s and 80s.
Tom Verlaine’s passing hard to believe
Before Tom Verlaine’s passing, I probably hadn’t listened to Marquee Moon for 15 years. Until about two months ago. I brought it back out to remind myself of some of the tonality that Television achieved.
Those opening bars of “See No Evil” are iconic to me as anything in rock music. Marquee Moon was as impeccable that November night in 2022 as it was when it transformed the New York scene in 1977.
With Tom Verlaine’s passing, he now sees the Torn Curtain. Rest in peace.
I made a deliberate decision to jump start 2023 by listening to the first great alternative songs new to January.
That’s what you’re going to hear below. While the first couple weeks of the year always seem to be catchup mode on Best Of lists for the year before, you will 100% fall in love with the new music already dropping in 2023.
Let’s have a listen!
Alternative songs new for your January playlist
Each of these songs shot out of the cannon in the first four weeks of the new year.
I haven’t finished listening to all the indie songs new to January, but these are the ones that caught my immediate attention. Each tune comes with a link to buy the song or album and support the artist. Make that a new year’s resolution in 2023! Support independent musicians by paying them for their art!
1. “Dark Moon” – GRMLN (Dark Moon)
We were just four days into the new year when Yoodoo Park of Kyoto, Japan, released Dark Moon and its tasty title track. Park’s GRMLN has been at this for a decade and doesn’t find these dream pop guitar lines by accident. I didn’t hear an entire album of these hooks on Dark Moon but the title track is one of the promising alternative songs new to January 2023.
2. “Mile Marker 29” – The Bad Ends (The Power and the Glory)
You know who you don’t hear a lot about in the year 2023? REM drummer Billy Berry.
Bill’s been taking it easy – the royalty checks probably still clear. After a health scare in the 90’s, Berry has been hay farming outside Athens the last 25 years. A chance meeting with Mike Mantionelead to new band The Bad Ends and Berry’s return to music. Have a listen to “Mile Marker 29.”
The Rills have a super dancy Franz Ferdinand thing happening.
It was especially clear on “Landslide,” which The Rills released last fall. Two weeks ago, they dropped “Falling Apart.” The Rills’ second EP, depending on where you get your info, will be available in February.
4. fine. – “New Skin/Good Life” (Love, Death, Dreams and the Sleep Between)
What I really dig about Boston’s fine. is this grade school choir sound they’ve perfected.
Bubblegum pop songs by Alice Kat and Liam James Marsh will wake you from your winter doldrums and get you dancing again. Although I’m including fine. in my January list of tunes…Love, Death, Dreams came out three days before Christmas, so sue me. Hit play and fall in love!
Let me tell you what I know about The Spooky Boys, which is close to nothing. They’re billed as “Portland’s premier indie/surf rock group featuring jangly dripping wet guitars, relentless driving rhythm, and insatiable catchy melodies.” Admittedly I didn’t know “jangly wet guitars” was a thing, nor that The Spooky Boys were Portland’s exemplar.
I DO KNOW superior power pop when I hear it. So check out one of the best indie songs new to 2023, “Past Tense.”
If Priestgate look miserable, their single “White Shirt” is a delirious balance of pop sugar and darker 80’s Cure vibes. I’m looking forward to hearing Priestgate’s second EP due on March 3. I have to say I love the rhythm and vocal desperation of “White Shirt.”
I get it, a band with a name and sound like Toronto’s FU is not going to appeal to everyone reading this post, and that’s a shame.
The arrangements and (honestly) melodies underneath Damian Abraham’s vocals are second to none. It is remarkable hardcore guitar rock. Hang with it for two minutes and think about what songs like “Huge New Her” would sound like with actual singing.
My FU collection goes back, if not to their origin, to their remarkable David Comes to Life. Abraham sang a bit more on David than on One Day. So, for context, a bonus track: “The Other Shoe” from 2011’s landmark David Comes to Life.
10. “Skeleton Boy” – Strange Neighbors (Party of None EP)
Let’s stick with the power pop sound. I bet Strange Neighbors are a fun show. Just look at them, having fun with a camera like good self-entertaining kids. The Party of None EP came out two weeks ago, and I recommend you download and inject one of the indie songs new to January that will get your party started.
This month Chicago singer-songwriter Maria Jacobson released her second album, Leaving. It’s sweeping acoustic folk with song titles like “Winter” and “God.” Those feel like difficult motifs to live up to. Much of this rests on Fran’s voice and lyrics, like Weyes Blood striped bare of the chamber orchestra.
Kelley Deal, Kim’s twin and most famous sister, delivers on R. Ring with partner Mike Montgomery.
Deal is involved in a ton of stuff in addition to R. Ring, including Breeders reboots and Protomartyr. I love Kelley’s comeback story, the Breeders’ icy cool baked into R. Ring and her indie rock confidence. Check out the payoff halfway through War Poems’ lead, “Still Life.”
I confess, another 2022 song but – come onnnn! — Denmark’s appleseeds! dropped this song on December 31. You were probably already asleep, so it’s officially one of the alternative songs new to January in my book. Too Good to be True Records indicates appleseeds! will release æblefrø on February 3.
Check out “Hungry Mouth” and get set for what promises to be an album of jangle pop perfection!.
Sabrina Teitelbaum is LA’s Blondshell, who writes about her toxic relationships with a candor that couldn’t care less. Dark indie rock echoing influences like PJ Harvey and Courtney Love. Some of it is sexualized, some of it is just dysfunctional emotion like “Sepsis.”
15. “Anglepoise” – The Happy Somethings (A Gathering of Sorts)
Let’s finish this list with 90 seconds of fist-pumping guitar rock. England’s The Happy Somethings roll the rhythm from Bow Wow Wow’s “I Love Candy” under bubblegum guitar fuzz and twee Bangles vocals.
You’ll be singing “Anglepoise” all day, and you’re welcome.
Imagine the logistics of coordinating dozens of bands into a 3-day window, dickering with band managers and site coordinators. Add to that, multiple top-shelf artists TBA. Now we know who the Kilby Block Party has added, and they’re as exciting as anyone announced to date for the Kilby Block Party SLC.
Mystery bands revealed for the Kilby Block Party 2023 lineup
Some new big names are coming as part of the Kilby Block Party 2023 lineup. Here’s a quick rundown of new bands. These are roughly in order of my personal preference and not top billing.
The heralded artist known for 2019’s Titanic Rising and last year’s And in the Darkness, Hearts Aglow, Natalie Mering has enchanted audiences with her emotive, chamber folk songs. Mering came to prominence just one year before the corona, so audiences are only now getting widespread opportunity to experience her live.
Here is “Everyday” from Titanic Rising.
Bookmark the Kilby Block party daily lineup right here:
God bless his heart, on God Save the Animals, Alex Giannascoli finally gave in and used professional engineers to record a series of songs about God and animals. Previously, Alex G insisted on doing most of the work from home. I’ve listened and re-listened to God Save the Animals the last several months to synch with those who compare Alex G to the incomparable Elliot Smith.
Make no mistake Alex G is a giant “get” for the Kilby Court Block Party 2023 lineup. I’m excited to see him play!
Here is one of Kilby’s best acts you may not know! Listen to Cuco right here!
Funky pop soul with an NC-17 rating. Former alpine ski Olympic hopeful and American Idol contestant, Remi Wolf’s 2021 debut Juno received considerable attention. It’s pretty heady stuff, a bit of SZA, The B-52’s and The Go! Team. In fact, sampling Juno made me want to go back and listen to Thunder, Lightening, Strike.
Euphoria actor, rapper, TikTokker
Kilby Block Party 2023 lineup tickets – New info on Super VIP’s. READ THIS
Organizers of the Kilby Court Block Party 2023 lineup obviously didn’t price themselves out of the market.
According to Kilby’s website, 3-Day Super VIP Passes are sold out. You can still buy regular, not-super 3-day VIP passes for $328. A small number of single day Super VIP passes are still available at $202 per day. General admission for all three days is $234.
ALL OF THAT SAID, tonight I ordered and received a 3-day Super VIP Pass for the Kilby Court Block Party despite Kilby’s notice the ultra-super-incredible 3-day passes were sold out (see fine print in comments).
After taxes, fees, freight licenses, surcharges, inheritance and ZAPP taxes, my cost was was $432.51. Not a small amount and this includes no parking. But IT DOES get you super premium viewing and some kind of access to food trucks and alcohol that is not a cash bar.
Here’s to trusting your favorite music blogger has discovered a few of these super amazing tickets are still available.