Passion Pit (formed 2007)
Passion Pit is an American Indie Electronica band from Cambridge, Massachusetts who are best known for their singles Sleepyhead and Take a Walk. Michael Angelakos is the sole member (lead singer, keyboards), whilst musicians Chris Hartz (drummer), Aaron Harrison Folb (bassist/synthesizers), Giuliano Pizzulo (guitarist/synthesizers), Pete Cafarella (synthesizers) and Ray Suen (guitarist/synthesizers) join him when performing live.
Formation: Originally Angelakos wrote and performed all his material by himself using a laptop up until his first solo show in Boston - after this, Ian Hultquist of Berklee College of Music approached him and asked to form a group with the two of them and Ayad Al Adhamy, Thom Plasse (bass), and Adam Lavinsky (drums). Jeff Apruzzese and Nate Donmoyer replaced Plasse and Lavinsky in 2008, and by 2012, Adhamy was replaced by Xander Singh.
Musical career: The first Passion Pit songs, which would later become the Chunk of Change EP, were written by Angelakos at Emerson College as a belated Valentine's Day gift to his then-girlfriend. At first, he wrote and performed all his material alone using a laptop. After one of his solo shows in the Boston area, Ian Hultquist, who was attending Berklee College of Music at the time, approached Angelakos and expressed interest in creating and playing music collaboratively. They formed a group that consisted of Angelakos, Hultquist, Ayad Al Adhamy, Thom Plasse (bass), and Adam Lavinsky (drums). The band spent a considerable amount of time trying to flesh out a collaborative format and structure that would work best for them. Jeff Apruzzese and Nate Donmoyer joined the band shortly after they signed to Frenchkiss in 2008, replacing Plasse and Lavinsky, respectively. In 2012, Adhamy was replaced by Xander Singh.
Passion Pit released their debut EP Chunk of Change on September 16, 2008. The band was then selected as "Best New Local Act in 2008" in the WFNX/Boston Phoenix best music poll. "Sleepyhead", the only single released from the EP and included in the band's 2009 album Manners, was well publicised while the video for the song, directed by The Wilderness, was included on Pitchfork's Top 40 Music Videos of 2008 list. The song also featured on the TV series Skins and on the Playstation 3 exclusive game LittleBigPlanet 2. Other songs, such as "Cuddle Fuddle" and "I've Got Your Number" were featured in E4's television series The Inbetweeners and used in a UK advert from O2.
Manners, the group's first full-length studio album came out on May 18th 2009 in the UK and May 19, 2009 in the United States and Canada. "Let Your Love Grow Tall", although never being released as a single, had some popularity through its feature on the TV series Ugly Betty. The song "Moth's Wings" was used in a number of television programmes, for example the teen drama Gossip Girl, HBO's Big Love and Sky Sports coverage of the UEFA Champions League.
2009 saw Passion Pit perform at the Glastonbury Festival. A year later, they supported Muse on part of their tour, and went on to headline the Campus Consciousness Tour aiming to promote environmentally-friendly lifestyles.
On May 7, 2012, the first track from the group's new album Gossamer was released, called "Take a Walk", and became one of the band's most successful singles - later being voted by the listeners of Australia's alternative radio station Triple J Hottest 100 into number 46 of the hottest 100 tracks for the year. The album later launched on July 20th 2012.
It was announced in 2013 that the band would be headlining the first ever "Coastline Festival" in Florida with Two Door Cinema Club and Matt & Kim. In September of that year Passion Pit released the Constant Conversations EP.
In April 2015 Passion Pit released their latest record entitled Kindred.
Made in America Festival is an annual music event founded by rapper and businessman Jay-Z in 2012. Following its inaugural year, it was announced to take place in Los Angeles for the later events and its arrival has since become an important symbol of unity. Jay-Z created the festival in a bid to join together musicians of all genres, creeds and cultures to emphasise the bond between music-lovers regardless of any animosity that may have existed between hip hop artists, rock artists and pop artists in the past. It is an attempt to build a world of peace and diversity because, in the words of Run DMC star Darryl McDaniels, 'Music succeeds where politics and religion fail'.
'Made In America' is a music documentary based on the new festival of the same name founded by Jay-Z who is also the movie's executive producer. It has been directed by double Oscar winner Ron Howard ('The Da Vinci Code', 'Apollo 13', 'Rush', 'A Beautiful Mind') and features behind-the-scenes clips and interviews of various music superstars including Run DMC, Rita Ora, Kanye West, Janelle Monáe, Tyler The Creator, Skrillex, Santigold and The Hives. The film premiered at the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival and was nominated for 'Outstanding Television Documentary' at the Black Reel Awards.
Made In America is available on VOD and DVD 19 May 2014
Coastline Festival 2013 brings the hottest indie bands from the UK and US to Florida this November.
Florida's Coastline Festival 2013 is set to arrive in less than two weeks, bringing with it a handful of the recent indie and rock sensations as well as great beer and great food.
The festival will hit the MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre in Tampa on November 9th 2013 before moving to the Cruzan Amphitheatre in West Palm on the 10th. It describes itself as a 'A Musiculinary Experience' - and that it certainly will be with an absolutely stellar line-up led by Massachusetts' Passion Pit, whose second album Gossamer was in the top five on the US Album Chart last year, and Irish collective Two Door Cinema Club who topped their Nation's charts with their sophomore release.
Continue reading: Passion Pit And Two Door Cinema Club To Play At Coastline Festival 2013
A bit like Arthur and Marilyn, there's always that lurking suspicion that being clever and being at the nub of pop culture - or being an icon in its highly transient field of dreams - are attributes with all the togetherness of oil and water. Attempting to make that belief someone else's problem, Massachusetts quintet Passion Pit appear to share a desire to deliver the simple rush freed up from its lowest common denominator; a blueprint they shared with the likes of MGMT, Yeasayer and our own Everything Everything. It's a destination that's hard to pin down, and Gossamer seems to be the most appropriate self-descriptive title we can think; sleek, glamorous and light to the touch, it's also delicate and may not stand up to lots of close scrutiny.
Once a solo venture for the laptop histrionics of Michael Angelakos, Passion Pit have now grown into a band with a serious critical pedigree, major label backing and reputation as remixers of note. Gossamer arrives at a point in musical history which seems to have prophetic timing, one where anybody resembling a serious musician can make more money working in a call centre and the charts are full over hyper-extended love notes from Logic Pro 9. As you might expect from a bunch of ex-students from Berkeley (Angelakos being the exception) it manages to combine sounding almost evangelically pop with not taking itself too seriously, another requisite in the must-have irony train that is the contemporary arts
Opener Take A Walk makes this point quite brazenly, valedictory fairground synths and a thudding tempo underpinning a weird first person narrative by a first generation immigrant now experiencing the nightmare doppelganger effects of the American dream. Interestingly, despite having the opportunity to use their full roster to deliver a more Mumford's style kitchen sink of a sound, there are still many echoes of the time that Angelakos used his laptop for composition. Here, the processed squawks at the beginning of I'll Be Alright and misty eyed techno washes of Carried Away blur the line between instruments and software, one some musicians have been scared to cross.
Continue reading: Passion Pit - Gossamer Album Review
The tracklisting for Twilight: Breaking Dawn – Part 2 has finally been announced, via Yahoo and amongst the highlights of this latest instalment are Green Day, Passion Pit and Ellie Goulding. Green Day, obviously are a pretty big coup for the compilers of the soundtrack (Summit Entertainment release the album in collaboration with Chop Shop Records and Atlantic Records) and the band’s bass player Mike Dirnt spoke to Yahoo! about contributing their track ‘The Forgotten’ and said “When we were asked to be part of the 'Twilight: Breaking Dawn - Part 2' soundtrack, we readily agreed because the films are an insane cultural phenomenon, and we have always been impressed with the way the 'Twilight' soundtracks are so carefully curated.”
Ellie Goulding’s track will draw attention to the soundtrack too, not only because it’s an exclusive track but because it’s the first track that she’s released, to have been produced by her new boyfriend Skrillex. Following in the vein of slightly kooky female artists, St. Vincent and Feist have both contributed a track; both will undoubtedly make an excellent accompaniment to the dark, moody atmosphere of the Twilight movie.
Coming from a slightly more mainstream angle, Christina Perri returns with ‘A Thousand Years (Part Two)’. Naturally, it’s a follow on from her theme to the first installment of Breaking Dawn and Perri was almost a dead cert to be included on this final musical bow. She’s such a fan of Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight saga that she has the word ‘Bitten’ tattooed on her, in the Twilight font. She told Yahoo! “I am so honored and excited to be involved again in this final film and soundtrack.” She revealed that part two of the track will be different but hasn’t yet said how and the tracks are yet to be released. “It's not the same [as the original]... you'll just have to wait and see how,” she teased.
Continue reading: Twilight: Breaking Dawn – Part 2. Soundtrack Listing Finally Announced
Nelly Furtado has certainly dipped her toe in plenty of different styles during her time in the music industry, and it’s as much thanks to the people she’s opened up to and worked with as it is her own eclectic tastes as an artist. True to form, her fifth album The Spirit Indestructible looks like it’s going to mark another change in direction for the 33 year-old Canadian, featuring as it does Nas on one track among other collaborators.
Talking to MTV, Furtado praised her producer Salaam Remi for his involvement in the album and said it was him who passed on her track Something to the rapper. “He loved it” she said of Nas’ reaction, before enthusing “It wasn't until I was finally sending in my liner notes to the label and handing in my lyrics that I had to ask Salaam for Nas' rap... It's one thing listening to Nas rap, but then when you see his words on paper, you really see what a poet he is. And I'm happy he's on the album."
With Passion Pit front man Michael Angelakos also involved in the project among others, Furtado admitted that she takes what she describes as a “buffet approach” to her albums. "I just kind of want it all on every album” she said, adding “I think this album is sort of a combination of all my sounds. I think this new album is totally spiritual in this really not obvious kind of way. I love songs that make you move your body, but sort of have a deeper meaning to them."