Finally Royal

New parade
An estimated 800,000 fans gathered Tuesday for the World Series Championship Parade at Union Station. (Photo by: Dave Eulitt, The Kansas City Star)

It took thirty years but the Kansas City Royals are finally World Series Champions again. Ever since they fell 90 feet short last fall against the San Francisco Giants, the team has been on a mission. In numerous interviews throughout the season, the team made it clear that their overarching goal for the season wasn’t to win the American League Central or win their second AL pennant in a row, both of which they did, but win as they put it “the trophy with the little flags on top.”

The Royals kept Kansas City on the edge of their seats all season long. From the antics of their young starting pitcher in the season opener to the final furious 2 run rally in the ninth inning of Game 5 of the World Series; this Royals team has captured the spirit of the city in a fresh and new way.

Never was that more evident than on championship parade day. On Tuesday the Royals championship parade went through downtown KC past landmarks like the Sprint Center, Power & Light and the National World War 1 Museum.

The parade finished in front of Union Station before a crowd estimated at upwards of 800,000 people where the Royals expressed their joy at winning the World Series and thanked the fans for their continued support.

For a team whose performances over the past two decades barely rose above tolerable for many fans to have a crowd that nearly doubled the population of their city is quite the feat. The Royals proved they could unite fans last season when their miracle run to the World Series was kick started by, for lack of a better word, wild Wild Card game.

They continued uniting fans all season long through their unmatched performances and the city’s craving for a winning team. All the heartache of the past decades of sports futility in Kansas City came out in a maniacal surge in fan support for the Royals who provided hope to fans who had had none in so many years.

All expressions of anger, frustration and apathy surrounding the Royals has been demolished in fourteen short months. Diehards and Johnny (Cueto)-come-latelys alike came out in force Tuesday to support not only Royals baseball, but Kansas City as a whole.

It took a while — but Kansas City is finally Royal.



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Julia Holter – Have You In My Wilderness

Julia Holter

Julia Holter is not one to shy away from experimenting with the sound of her music, and she continues to show this in her fourth album, Have You In My Wilderness. This album samples multiple different ideas and instruments into an interesting blend of jazz, classical, indie, and pop. The album starts out with a few upbeat, coffeshop-esque songs that meld Holter’s voice with the primarily stringed accompaniment. The lyrics are pretty nonsensical, but that only puts more focus on the amazing instrumentals. The third song on the album, “How Long?”, takes a very dark turn, with Holter’s voice turning into a deep velvety alto evocative to Adele. This is the only song on the album in this style, and although it has an odd placement that doesn’t flow with the tone of the album, it is still very enjoyable.

The next few songs of the album seems heavily inspired by Feist. Holter makes her voice light and airy, and the instrumental is simplistic, but the lyrics in contrast are very sad. “What did I do to make you feel so bad? What did I do that you would make me feel so bad?” This provides a sharp contrast with the next song, “Everytime Boots”, which is buoyant and carefree. “I’ll take my time here, there’s no reason to rush. I’d even let the cattle ride away- I wouldn’t blink an eye.” The last few songs in Have You in my Wilderness aren’t the best, being lengthy and a bit plain compared to the rest of the album. Otherwise this album is a thought-provoking blend of different genres of music, and I can’t wait to see what Julia Holter does next.

Watch the video for the lead single “Feel You” below:

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The Oh Hello’s – Dear Wormwood

1445103940_coverThe first time I heard a song by the Oh Hellos, my first thought was “Wow. where have these guys been all of my life?” Their newest album, Dear Wormwood, certainly reminded me just how much I missed them since their last album’s release in 2012. This Texan duo is currently one of the most lively and interesting faces of the the indie-folk scene. With thoughtful, yet energetic lyrics, this group’s sound is relatively easy to pick out once you’ve listened to them once or twice.

Dear Wormwood certainly follows this group’s formula for an album. It begins with Prelude, which gets the ball rolling with a subtle medley for melodies from their last album, Through the Deep, Dark Valley. This then carries into the first single off of the album, Bitter Water, which sounds like your typical, harmonious Oh Hellos song.

As they typically do with their music, The Oh Hellos incorporate subtle scriptural references within this album. The tracks Bitter Water, along with the track for which the album was named, Dear Wormwood make references to the book of Revelations in which Wormwood, a star that falls from the sky, turns waters of the earth bitter.
This album was exactly what I expected from The Oh Hellos. With a combination of eerie and fast-paced songs, it makes up a solid album overall. However, it is very similar to their a lot of their other stuff, so a listener who’s not engulfed in the indie-folk scene may think that a lot of the songs sound similar. In the most loving way possible, I think that a lot of these songs sound like they could be heard at a Renaissance festival. I personally loved listening to Dear Wormwood, and would recommend The Oh Hellos to anyone who likes Bear’s Den, Noah Gundersen, The Head and the Heart, or The Civil Wars.



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Classroom Series – CS Luxem

On Thursday, October 29th, CS Luxem of Lawrence, Kansas traveled to our McCain studios for a Classroom Series event. This performance was broadcasted live over the air on 91.9 FM as well as on television for the first time ever on the KSDB campus channel, Channel 25. Normally, CS Luxem is a solo project put together by Lawrence native, Christopher Luxem. Chris has toured the country and Europe and played with an eclectic variety of musicians. Currently CS Luxem is a “supergroup” of Lawrence musicians, including Chris Luxem, Taryn Miller of the band Your Friend, and Mark Rockwell and James Thomblison of Arc Flash and Psychic Heat. These artist are all associated with Whatever Forever Tapes, one of Lawrence’s most influential record labels. Together they create a sound that is a unique blend of psych-rock and folk music that varies sonically from song to song. For more information on CS Luxem, visit their Facebook and Bandcamp pages. To keep up to date with events going on at KSDB, sign up for our newsletter or visit our events page.

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