Jake Bellows Daytrotter drops, Darren Keen nabs VICE mention and more

VICE is now hip to Nebraska’s Darren Keen, evidenced by this recent shoutout on THUMP, the electronic music and culture channel of VICE organization. It predictably notes Keen’s “aversion” to shirts on stage, but has nice words for his sounds.

Keen’s latest split EP with Machine Girl was released on the Chicago-based electronic music label Them Flavors. The EP caught THUMP’s attention with its footwork-style vibes and unconventional, undulating grooves. Check out Keen’s “Doomy” and Machine Girl’s “Galatea” here.


Daytrotter released their session with Jake Bellows today. The Neva Dinova frontman played a couple songs off his recent solo album New Ocean, out last year on Saddle Creek. He also played the loose, slow-burning track “Meaning Wrong,” the video for which premiered last year via American Songwriter.

In other news, Nebraska State Fair officials have done away with the wristband entry for concerts at the fair, and have put a new ticket system in its place.

According to an article in the Omaha World Herald, in past years, free, first-come-first-serve concert entry wristbands were only available at the fairgrounds. And patrons weren’t always guaranteed one, even if they waited in line before the show.

After hearing feedback from concertgoers who’d rather pay for a reserved ticket ahead of time, the State Fair made the switch to the $6 “convenience fee” to see Chris Young, Styx or Michael W. Smith at this year’s fair.

Fairgoers can also purchase a State Fair Fan Club membership that gives daylong admission, as well as a free ticket to any concert, with exclusive seats in the arena or on the floor.

You can buy your ticket now at the Heartland Events Center or call (308) 398-1480.

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The night before he appeared on Letterman, Conor Oberst played the last night of Newport Folk Festival. NPR captured the audio and you can now stream the whole set. The set list was fairly similar to Oberst’s June show in Omaha, including a few throwback Bright Eyes songs, such as “Bowl of Oranges” and “We Are Nowhere and It’s Now.”

At Newport, you can hear Oberst biting off nearly every lyric with some incisive inflections. Also, the band plays a great version of “Governor’s Ball” (which they didn’t perform in Omaha) from Oberst’s new solo album, Upside Down Mountain.

House of Loom and the Joslyn Art Museum announced Omaha’s Escencia Latina Band will headline Loom Weaves Joslyn Multicultural Festival. It will take place outdoors in the Joslyn’s sculpture garden on Sunday, Aug 31.

The ten-piece salsa band, led by Cristobal Oquendo and Antonio Betanzos, top a bill that features the funk fusion group Omaha Beat Brigade, the hip-hop duo BOTH and soulful vocalist Cristina B, among other Omaha acts. The event is free and open to all ages. You can RSVP to the festival here.

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And finally, Lincoln native Matthew Sweet will take the stage tonight at Vega. Sweet played a sold-out show at O’Leaver’s Pub in Omaha last night.

Sweet earned his stripes (with Michael Stipe) in Athens, Georgia during the ‘80s and broke out to commercial success with pop and rock albums in the ‘90s. The titular single from Sweet’s 1991 album Girlfriend reached the top ten on the Billboard rock charts. Plus, its video featured Japanese cyberpunk anime way before it was cool.

Before you head out to the Haymarket tonight, check out HN managing editor Chance Solem-Pfeifer’s 5 Things to Know About Matthew Sweet. Especially, if you’re a 20-something who only recognizes Sweet’s “Girlfriend” from Guitar Hero II.

You can still cop tickets here. They’re $15 at the door.