Moogfest adds three more bands

“Adding more awesome to your day,” begins a newsletter from Moogfest planners. The festival runs Friday-Sunday, Oct. 28-30. “Surprise! We’re sprinkling a few more ultra-stellar acts into the mix: Synth-pop superstar Neon Indian, the burgeoning electronic force known as Emancipator, and improvisational musician and multi-instrumentalist Shahzad Ismaily. We’re over the moon about our new additions and that we’ll be seeing them live in a little over a month!”

• Neon Indian from Denton, Texas seems to be leading the charge in a new trend: Where indie bands once boasted names with birds (Futurebirds, Bowerbirds, Night Birds, Birds of Prey, For the Birds) they’re now boasting names with Indians or Indian tribes (Aligator Indian, Apache Dropout, Apache Relay, Apache Indian, Indian). It’s not surprising that Neon Indian, led by Mexican-born composer Alan Palomo would be on top of that — the band was names on of the hottest new bands of 2010 by Rolling Stone. Their new album Era Extraña has just been released.

Watch the video for “Polish Girl”:

•  Emancipator is actually trip-hop producer Doug Appling whose debut (2006) album, Soon It Will Be Cold Enough goes a long way toward summing up the band’s laid back, icey-crystaline soundscapes. “His latest album Safe In The Steep Cliffs blends new instrumentation and organic samples with the signature Emancipator style of clean production, silky melodies and addictive drums,” says Appling’s bio. “Dense layers of choirs, horns, American folk instruments such as the banjo and mandolin, violin and some distinct Asian influences make for a playful but refined album built out of intricate tracks listeners can enjoy on as many levels as they want.”

Watch a NoCoastTV video of Emancipator:

EMANCIPATOR – “Fox Theatre Live” 02.24.11 from NoCoast.TV on Vimeo.

• Shahzad Ismaily has a bio befitting his interesting name — the self-taught composer/multi-instrumentalist was born to Pakistani parents in a multi-cultural household in Scranton, Penn. He’s studied in far-flung locales like Japan, Morocco and Iceland and has performed with the likes of Laurie Anderson, Bonnie Prince Billy and John Zorn. He also composes for dance, film and theater, and teaches.

Watch Shahzad Ismaily in a 2008 improvised performance:

About Alli Marshall
Alli Marshall is the arts section editor at Mountain Xpress. She's lived in Asheville for more than 20 years and loves live music, visual art, fiction and friendly dogs. Alli is the winner of the 2016 Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize and the author of the novel "How to Talk to Rockstars," published by Logosophia Books. Follow me @alli_marshall

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