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DJ Pinetree at WCDB 90.9fm

Interview with Claudio Reyna

By: Rob Lepelstat

Claudio Reyna truly needs no introduction. Over the course of a professional fútbol career spanning over 20 seasons with stops including Sunderland, Manchester City, and the New York Red Bulls, Reyna left the pitch for the final time in 2008 highly regarded as one of the greatest American soccer players of all-time. 

Serving as the captain of the USMNT up until his retirement from international play following the 2006 FIFA World Cup, the National Soccer Hall of Famer made 112 appearances for the national team – representing America in three World Cups (1998, 2002 and 2006) as well as the 1992 and 1996 Summer Olympic Games. 

When sports director Rob Lepelstat got the chance to sit down with him this week thanks to our friends at Wells Fargo for the grand opening of their new branch location on East 86th Street in New York City, they spoke about everything from his childhood growing up, to his professional career, his current position as Sporting Director at NYCFC, the 2018 FIFA World Cup, his favorite DINNER and so much more!

Wells Fargo released the following statement regarding their support for the MLS, the Mexican National Team and the soccer community.

“2018 FIFA World Cup is only a few days away and Wells Fargo is proud to be a part of the soccer community through its sponsorship of MLS and the Mexican National Team.  Each FIFA World Cup year attracts thousands of new fans to the sport of soccer, nowhere more so than the United States. With our coast-to-coast presence, the time was right for Wells Fargo to invest in a national sports marketing sponsorship (MLS).  This sponsorship offers Wells Fargo a unique and ownable platform for engaging new and existing customers, increasing our overall brand consideration and continuing to support community initiatives via the MLS W.O.R.K.S. Community MVP program and community service projects. With many of its players on the U.S. National Team roster, Major League Soccer represents an incredible opportunity to connect with local communities and soccer fans across the country to share Wells Fargo’s passion for their financial success, as well as the ”beautiful game.”

LISTEN TO THE INTERVIEW HERE.

 

The Big 52 – Frankie Cosmos’ Vessel

Frankie Cosmos have announced the release of the 18-track Vessel, marking an astonishing 52 releases as a project (including early Bandcamp releases). Vessel is their first release under the Sub Pop label, and is set to drop March 30th. You can listen to the first three released singles, “Jesse,” “Being Alive,” and “Apathy” wherever you stream your music.

Frankie Cosmos is also hitting the road in April, with openers Lomelda, Ian Sweet, and SOAR. Unfortunately these shows all fall on the West Coast, so let’s hope for added show dates once the album comes out!

Steam the most recent single “Apathy” here:

 

February Recap

February was quite an exciting month for music releases, including a few full-length albums, and a handful of singles from some of our favorites.

The first, must-listen album goes to Black Panther: The Album, released by Kendrick Lamar and features various other artists. As advertised, it includes music from and inspired by the film, which is currently selling out theaters nationwide. The collection of artists who collaborated on this album is impressive, so give it a listen if you haven’t already.

The next albums worthy of mention are Car Seat Headrest’s remaster of Twin Fantasy, along with Hovvdy’s Cranberry. Both were highly anticipated albums by a few of our DJs, who have been long-time fans of the bands. On a personal note, Triathalon (one of my old favorites) just released Online.

On the singles front, Beach House’s “Lemon Glow” chilled us out, while Janelle Monae’s “Make Me Feel” and “Django Jane” got us dancing. Courtney Barnett’s “Nameless, Faceless” gave us some nostalgia on February 15th, following Michael Seyer’s “Lucky Love” the day before.

While there are surely a bunch missing from this list, these should keep your ears satisfied until the next batch of releases, which are sure to impress.

WCDB’s 40th Anniversary Reunion Weekend

Schedule of Events

Join us in welcoming back WCDB alumni for a weekend full of events and fun! 


THURSDAY, MARCH 1

All day
Station Open House and Birthday Party
Campus Center West Great Hall
Help celebrate the radio station’s birthday with a cake at 3:00 p.m., followed by a 4:00 p.m. airing of Bruce Springsteen’s “Born to Run” to commemorate the beginnings of the station WCDB on March 1, 1978, and a sing along shortly after. Join other alumni for the live on-air round table. Registration required. Cost: Free. Complimentary food and beverages.

FRIDAY, MARCH 2

All day
Station Open House
WCDB Radio Station, Campus Center 316
Alumni live on-air round table/spinning throughout the day with bagels, doughnuts and coffee available in the morning and munchies and beverages in the afternoon. Cost: Free.

7:00 p.m.
Multi-Genre Music Night
Campus Center Fireside Lounge and Assembly Hall
Featuring multiple live alumni bands including jazz and rock, and who knows, a professional comedy act by an alumnus or two? Registration required. Cost: $10. Cash bar only.

SATURDAY, MARCH 3

All day
Station Open House and Hospitality Reception
WCDB Radio Station, Campus Center 316
Alumni live on-air round table/ spinning throughout the day with bagels, doughnuts and coffee available in the morning and munchies and beverages in the afternoon. Cost: Free.

7:00 p.m.
Reunion Dinner
Campus Center Fireside Lounge and Assembly Hall
Join fellow alumni and students for an informal buffet and a night of music with alumni and student DJs spinning throughout the night. Grab your friends and have fun in the complimentary photo booth. Registration required. Cost: $75 with beer, wine and soda included. Cash bar.


SUNDAY, MARCH 4

9:00 a.m.-Noon
Remote Broadcast from Brubacher — “Back Where It All Began”
Brubacher Hall, The College of St. Rose, 750 State St.
WCDB will broadcast live from Brubacher Hall just outside the room that served as WSUA’s main studio for the first 15 years of the station’s operation. Reminisce with your hosts, John Kienzle ’67, John Michalke ’70 and Bill McCann ’86, ’87 while they play hit songs and news bits from the WSUA era. Coffee and doughnuts available.

Noon-4:00 p.m.
Station Open House
WCDB Radio Station, Campus Center 116
Alumni live on-air round table/ spinning throughout the afternoon.

Stream Hovvdy’s new single “Late”

Hovvdy, a two-part duo from Texas, have released “Late”, a new single from their upcoming album Cranberry, set to be released February 9th, 2018. The release of “Late” follows their earlier release of “Petal”, which debuted back in October. Both tracks are melodic and slow, with introspective lyrics, reflecting on past situations.

In addition to their two releases, they are currently finishing up a fall West Coast Tour, leaving fans excited in anticipation for Cranberry‘s full release. You can preorder the album here.

Stream “Late” below:

 

Sam Smith Enthralls on The Thrill of It All

Written by: Kitty Modell-Rosen

Last week, 2014’s breakout singer/songwriter Sam Smith released his long awaited sophomore album The Thrill of It All. Smith has certainly outdone himself, stripping much of this release’s songs down to just his powerful vocals, a simple piano and when necessary, a gospel choir to add layers of strength and spirituality to his already angelic voice.

The album’s first track, “Too Good At Goodbyes” served as the album’s lead single and ushered in this new era of music for Smith and his patient fanbase. The first half of the song finds Smith accompanied by just a subtle piano playing the simplest chords, joined by finger-snapping. As emotions build and tensions rise, a beat kicks in and eventually Smith is flanked by a gospel choir, echoing his verses to the heavens.

On “HIM”, Smith tells the beautiful story of a young boy coming out to the most important men in his life – his father, and the “Holy Father”, God. Outlined within the song’s lyrics is a boy standing up for the love he holds for another boy, as well as the love he insists he deserves from God and his father despite this supposed religious transgression in the form of engaging in a homosexual relationship. The track is empowering, and brings chills to the spine when the gospel choir joins Smith, adding another layer to the religious battle the boy is fighting.

“Midnight Train” takes a somber note and flips the perspective to Smith making the painful decision to break a lover’s heart this time, as opposed to allowing his heart to be broken as he usually does. The track takes on a Doo-Wop-esque feeling and sound at the chorus, as Smith contemplates whether he is a “monster” for making the selfish decision to put himself before his now ex-boyfriend, what his lover’s family will think of him for leaving and how to put into words why he must depart for good.

The Timbaland-produced “Pray” served as an additional promotional release for the album, and was inspired by the time Smith spent in Iraq with the charity War Child. The song’s opening fools the listener into thinking the song will be upbeat, when in reality, it openly and emotionally details Smith’s naiveté regarding the state of the world – citing a lack of completed education, his young age, his ignoring of the news and having turned away from religion. By the end of the track, Smith concludes that despite all of this, we all end up praying, at one point or another, for a “glimmer of hope” in the darkness of our current world.

Additionally of note is “Scars”, exclusively available as one of the album’s special edition bonus tracks. Serving as a kind of dual letter to his mother and father in response to their divorce, “Scars” is poetic, heartwarming and heartbreaking, all in the span of three minutes. Smith sings that his parents’ newfound happiness without each other as husband and wife, as well as their assistance and guidance to their children through that tough time, has healed his metaphorical scars.

Smith’s debut release In the Lonely Hour is nothing when in the shadow of this powerful and emotional sophomore release. As a whole, The Thrill of It All is hauntingly raw and real, as Smith reveals to his listeners – layer by layer, track by track – how heartbreak of all kinds has affected him and culminated in this painfully honest collection of ballads.

Listen below:

Boy Pablo’s Roy Pablo

At just 18, Norwegian-native Boy Pablo has already released 3 singles and a 6 track EP. He is joined on stage by his best friends and is currently touring around Europe. His latest release, Roy Pablo, was released this past May and quickly gained attention among the dreampop community, being compared to acts like Mild High Club and Banes World.

Check out the EP below:

(recommended tracks: everytime, ur phone, ready / problems)

10 Years Ago Today: Radiohead’s In Rainbows

Ten years ago today, on Oct. 10th 2007, Radiohead self-released their seventh studio album In Rainbows, after breaking from their former label. In Rainbows was announced and released on Radiohead’s blog, with pay-what-you-want download link. They were the first major band to do this, and it sparked international debate about revolutionizing the role of the music industry, garnering mostly positive reactions. The album received critical acclaim, won 2 Grammys, and was named one of the top albums of 2007. In 2012, Rolling Stone ranked In Rainbows as #336 on the updated list of Greatest 500 Albums of All Time.

Take a look back and give it a spin:

 

Strange Ranger In-Studio

Stranger Ranger joined WCDB for an in-studio and interview a few weeks back. DJ Ronnie had the pleasure of hosting them and below is her take on the event:

I’ve been a huge fan of Strange Ranger since their last year’s release “Rot Forever”. It was such a pleasure to host them at our station. As they walked in, they immediately noticed the massive Bruce Springsteen record on the wall they made note of how all college radio stations are pretty similar but in the end, unique in their own ways. They enjoy playing DIY shows and having them at WCDB felt like a real “do it for the culture” moment. They could have ignored our request to stop by but they went out of their way because supporting the scene is what they love. When they began to set up I recognized two familiar faces in the band and 3 new ones. They got a new drummer named Asher and had Fiona on the keyboard. Isaac and Fred were the 2 members apart of the original line up. The last was Nathan, a member that had played drums for them on Rot Forever but just began touring with them as the second guitarist this Summer/Fall. As they set up the equipment, a casual jam session broke out. These guys love to jam, there are intense jam breakdowns all over Rot Forever. It was something that obviously came very naturally to them. Isaac fumbled around with headphones and snapped one of the earpieces off, and as the band collectively roasted him for being a klutz, we began to jump into some questions about their upcoming album. I’m sure they get asked about the name change a lot but they wanted us to know not only did the name Strange Ranger come out of respect and accountability of Sioux falls but what also joined it was a shift in their sound. They played a couple songs off their upcoming album and recently released singles. It was a nice mixed bag of old and new stuff from their older EPs, Rot Forever and Daymoon. I begged them to play Dom as they tried to decide what to play next. It must have been a song that wasn’t rehearsed in a while, and as they laughed through the small sloppy mistakes and rocky start, debris from the ceiling began to fall. Dom shook the entire station in a great way. As we got into more questions about their influence everything began to make sense as to why I loved these guys so much. Songs: Ohia, The Microphones, Elliott Smith and Alex G were all listed as influences of their upcoming album being released October 6th on Tiny Engines. After the show, we chatted about the Albany DIY scene and our local bands. They knew quite a few people involved in it and seemed excited to return back to Albany.

A live recording of the performance can be heard below:

Stay tuned for more planned in-studios, including a performance by Jouska and Hate Club on Oct. 6th as they join us for College Radio Day!