Icky Blossoms explores virtual reality in new video; Benson First Friday introduces outdoor music series; Motion City Soundtrack, Comrades tonight

Icky Blossoms explores virtual reality in new video

More than a year after releasing its electronically sprawling, chaotically claustrophobic sophomore LP Mask, Icky Blossoms has captured its essence in virtual reality.

The Omaha indie rock band shared the 3-D, 360-degree video for “Phantasmagoria” yesterday. Imagined as a V-R-game-like setting (and created in partnership with video game developer 2DArray), it takes the viewer through a wormhole in a bedroom and into outer space, introducing a wealth of visual stimuli to complement the spastic, electrified track.

The band started working on the video around the album’s release, after meeting one of the developers at 2DArray. The goal was to simulate and visualize the bedroom listening experience.

“The inspiration of the video is being young in your bedroom, getting lost in music,” the band told HN yesterday. “None of it was filmed. It was all just envisioned and written down and then interpreted [by 2Darray]. It was very interesting way of working. The gaming world takes a long time to get things done, but days like today make it all worth it.”

Naturally, the best way to view the video (downloadable through the Oculus Rift) is through a virtual reality headset, but the 360 YouTube stream allows exploration as well. The band hinted at an Easter Egg as well.

Explore the video below, and buy 2DArray’s Observatory: A VR Variety Pack, which features the video, here.

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Benson First Friday introduces outdoor music series

First Friday promises to be a warm one, and after our own hearts, Benson’s festivities will feature busking musicians galore.

Benson First Friday introduces Summer Street Series tomorrow, closing off Military Street and showcasing 23 acts on four “corner” stages. DJ Joe Benson, Fino, Vago and Obvious Funk headline the main stage at Military and Maple.

In addition, acoustic acts will perform in front of 402 Arts Collective (SW corner of 60th Ave & Maple), St Andrews Pub (NW corner of 61st Street & Maple) and Benson Community Center (NW corner of 60th Street & Maple). Notables include Brad Hoshaw, Mim Aparo (Anthems), Midwest Dilemma, Aly Peeler, Ryan Osbahr and HN contributor Andrew Samson.

Check out the full schedule below (all times p.m.) and RSVP here for tomorrow’s complete BFF listing:

Military & Maple
5-7: DJ Joe Benson
7-11: VAGO
FINO
OBVIOUS FUNK

402 Arts Collective (SW corner of 60th Ave & Maple)
6-7 Ryan Osbahr and Billie Frost
7-8 The Shineys
8-9 David Berman
9-10 Ben Baldwin
10-10:30 Michelle Eva Becker

St Andrews Pub (NW corner of 61st Street & Maple)
6-6:30 Daniel Burns
6:30-7 Aly Peeler
7-7:30 Nic Johnson
7:30-8 Midwest Dilemma
8-8:30 Reagan Roeder
8:30-9:30 Brad Hoshaw
9:30-10 Vern Fergesen
10-10:30 Josh Watson

Benson Community Center (NW corner of 60th Street & Maple)
6-7 Adam Peterson
7-8 Mace Hathaway
8-8:30 Andrew Samson
8:30-9:30 Austin Dinges
9:30-10 Scott Roth
10-10:30 Mim Aparo

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Concert Round-Up

Tonight, Motion City Soundtrack comes to Slowdown, 729 N 14th St, on its expansive, international “So Long, Farewell” tour. The Minneapolis-native pop punk act announced the conclusion of a nearly 20-year career earlier this year, on the heels of its sixth (and presumably final) studio album Panic Stations last year. Baltimore act Have Mercy and Cincinnati pop-rock band Let It Happen open the 8 p.m. show. Tickets are $25. RSVP here.

In Lincoln, Richmond, Virginia, post rock trio Comrades kicks off a nationwide DIY tour at The Commons, 1239 S 14th St, with Kearney band Cruz Control and Oklahoma City act The Happy Alright. Comrades’ Laura McElroy will also play an acoustic set. There is a suggested $5 donation at the door for the touring bands. Show starts at 7 p.m. RSVP here.

For a fuller listing of shows, head to our statewide calendar here. If you do not see your show or one you plan to attend, email us at news@hearnebraska.org, post it in the comments or add it here. Use that same email address to send us news tips, story ideas and song submissions.

Andrew Stellmon is Hear Nebraska's managing editor. Reach him with news tips and story ideas at news@hearnebraska.org.