Picked to Click 2013: #1. Lizzo

Categories: Picked to Click
1_lizzo.jpg
Photo by Emily Utne

#1. Lizzo: 87 points

"I'm so glad you ain't asked a question about being a woman in hip-hop," says Lizzo midway through a conversation with City Pages. That makes a whole music scene of us.

Everything you need to know on that topic is addressed on her debut full-length, Lizzobangers. "I ain't your hook girl, boo, I'm your feature/And I don't need your attention because of my features," she spits on the menacing "Hot Dish," one of several tracks that interweave autobiography with her brash artistic stance. Far from just another "rapper with a womb," Lizzo has an allure that's far more rarefied. This daughter of Detroit and Houston needed to be in Minneapolis for only about a split second before she started rebuilding it in her likeness.

See Also: Picked to Click official site

More »

Picked to Click 2013: #2. Greg Grease

Categories: Picked to Click
2_greg_grease.jpg
Photo courtesy of the artist
#2. Greg Grease: 81 points

Over the past 12 months, we've gotten to know a lot about Greg Grease, but this could be just the jump-off. The rapper, producer, storyteller, and musical collaborator won't let himself be confined to any one thing.

"I really just want to show people that there's more than one way of doing anything," Grease says. And then, as though to play down the importance of such a claim, he adds with a laugh, "I think I'm just trying to impress my friends a lot. And I have a lot of really good artist friends, so that probably plays into it."

See Also: Picked to Click official site


More »

Picked to Click 2013: #3. GRRRL PRTY

Categories: Picked to Click
grrrl_800.jpg
Photo courtesy of the artist

#3. GRRRL PRTY: 65 points

The three entertaining ladies of GRRRL PRTY are captivating enough to host their own hip-hop version of The View. Instead, these friends' in-jokes and convivial banter color one of the area's most exciting new rap acts.

Here, Lizzo's joined by Sophia Eris, her cohort from 2012's Picked to Click champs the Chalice. And then there is Manchita, who also collaborated with Lizzo in Tha Clerb, and has returned to Minneapolis after an extended sojourn to Chicago. Got it straight?


More »

Picked to Click 2013: #4. Carroll

Categories: Picked to Click
4_carroll.jpg

#4. Carroll: 52 points

Thousands of bands form at colleges every year, but only a scant few are serious enough to grow up to be MGMT (Wesleyan) or Vampire Weekend (Columbia). But the indie-rock foursome Carroll, named after the street they lived on while studying at Macalester, made a solid first step with their debut EP, Needs. With their tightly constructed hooks, reflective synths, and Brian Hurlow's sensitive yet elusive missives, these five songs were a precocious introduction.

"For all the smart and talented people who go to that school, there are a lot of people who talk about the things they want to do and don't do them," says guitarist Max Kulicke, while relaxing on an outdoor patio with his bandmates. "What was so appealing about this project was it was three people who I knew had talent and skill, but who were also trying to actually go out and execute."

See Also: Picked to Click official site

More »

Picked to Click 2013: #5. Frankie Lee

Categories: Picked to Click
5_frankie_lee.jpg

Frankie Lee comes off a lot like a drifter and a wanderer in the mold of Woody Guthrie -- riding the rails with the clothes on his back and a guitar in hand. He sure looks the part, with his cowboy hat, scraggly blond beard, worn jean jacket, and work boots. But the truth is altogether different. For Lee and his music, it's all about finding a place in the world, one that's real and permanent.

#5. Frankie Lee: 49 points

"My first memories," says Lee, "are of being outside, and of farms." He grew up mostly in Stillwater but spent his earliest years on a dairy farm in Prescott, Wisconsin. "There was a big front porch and you had a beehive and the food was homemade," he recalls. "My mom still has a piano, and every time I go out there, we play music."

See Also: Picked to Click official site

More »

Picked to Click 2013: #6 (tie). Ginkgo

Categories: Picked to Click
6_ginkgo.jpg

#6 (tie). Ginkgo: 44 points

A Picked to Click honoree who's already "clicked" plenty, Ginkgo's Josh Grier rocked the likes of Letterman and Coachella with his blog-buzzed rock band Tapes 'n' Tapes during the late 2000s. That level of success typically leads to music-career tunnel vision, but appears to have had the opposite effect on Grier. Growing dissatisfaction with the touring grind led him to put Tapes 'n' Tapes on ice and make Manopause, his one-man band debut as Ginkgo.

See Also: Picked to Click official site


More »

Picked to Click 2013: #6 (tie). Pony Bwoy

Categories: Picked to Click
6_pony_bwoy.jpg

#6 (tie). Pony Bwoy: 44 points

I don't think we've ever made a song in the daytime," says Pony Bwoy vocalist Jeremy Nutzman. "We weren't looking for product, we were just hanging out and having fun."

The experimental R&B duo of Nutzman, who raps under the name Spyder Baybie Raw Dog, and producer Hunter Morley mostly work together in an after-after-party haze, melding sporadic sounds and ideas into tightly realized end results. Simultaneously free-form and intensely mulled-over, the lyrics feel stream-of-consciousness, while sonic structures meander through electronica, soul, hip-hop, funk, and "sappy-ass love ballads," as Morley put it.

See Also: Picked to Click official site


More »

Picked to Click 2013: #8. Southwire

Categories: Picked to Click
8_southwire.jpg

#8. Southwire: 43 points

Southwire have emerged out of the fertile music scene in Duluth with a blend of plaintive folk and a vibrant backbeat rooted in hip-hop. Songs that were born modestly around the elegiac strains of frontwoman Jerree Small's piano blossomed in the studio under the deft, gritty touch of Crew Jones bandmates Sean Elmquist and Ben Larson. Along with bassist Matt Mobley, the group gives the gospel-tinged numbers a stylish, pulsating rhythm.

See Also: Picked to Click official site



More »

Picked to Click 2013: #9. Fury Things

Categories: Picked to Click
9_fury_things.jpg

#9. Fury Things: 42 points

A DIY streak sure can speed up the recording process -- just ask Fury Things. In one productive day last fall, the Minneapolis garage-rock three-piece recorded the five raw, guitar-driven numbers on their self-titled debut EP at their practice space at the Acrylic Fabricators warehouse.

"It was all recorded on a Sunday, and then mixed on a Tuesday," explains bassist Devon Bryant. "We fixed something on Thursday, and then had it up online by Friday. It was cool. I've been in bands for a long time, but it was my first experience with Bandcamp, and that level of speed in getting something out. And we got really good responses back right away." "Yeah, it was really quick and dirty," lead singer/guitarist Kyle Werstein chimes in proudly.

See Also: Picked to Click official site


More »

Picked to Click 2013: #10 (tie). Animal Lover

Categories: Picked to Click
10_animal_lover.jpg

10 (tie). Animal Lover: 34 points

Animal Lover have a sound that hits you in the forehead and gut simultaneously. Frontman Addison Shark's guitar explodes like a dirty bomb of feedback, and the pulverizing bass and drums of Evan Bullinger and Nate Fisher add to its shrapnel spray. This is noise rock powerful enough to leave a lasting physical impression -- albeit a confusing one for venues assembling punk nights.

See Also: Picked to Click official site

More »
Loading...