What Is FailSafe Festival?

FailSafe Festival is a five-day festival of live performance, taking place in the Times Square/Hell's Kitchen area of New York City. FailSafe Festival provides a space for artists to push beyond what they consider "safe" to present, giving them an opportunity to show work that may not have a home elsewhere.

As part of the second annual FailSafe Arts Festival, 10 artists of varying backgrounds will present live performances over 5 days in the Times Square/Hell's Kitchen District. FailSafe provides a space for artists to push beyond what they consider "safe" to present, giving them an opportunity to show work that might not have a home elsewhere. Last year, the festival presented work from 11 artists and organizations and welcomed over 400 audience members to take in dance, theater, and music for adventurous theatergoers.

This year we are excited to see "Until Proven Guilty."

Until Proven Guilty is the final installment of Louis DeVaughn Nelson's American Satire Trilogy. Human Error (2007) dealt with the effects of technological advancements on society, Man Bites Dog (2010) satirized sensationalism in the media, andUntil Proven Guilty will address good, old-fashioned American sociopolitical warfare.

The former two ballets were performed at The Philadelphia Live Arts & Fringe Festival. The underlying theme of this series is social justice. Until Proven Guilty uses theatre, modern dance, burlesque and multimedia to explore several facets of the minority experience, including domestic violence, external and internal racism, sexuality, discrimination, bigotry, misogyny, and the marginalization inherent in class and social systems.

Photo of "Until Proven Guilty"by Shayla Lawson

Written and Choreographed by Louis DeVaughn Nelson, Directed by Jeannine Frumess with Film by Maren Woodward, and featuring writing from Merry Johns, Until Proven Guilty by Hokum Arts has been selected for this year's festival. The diverse cast and crew is entirely made up of POC, LGBTQ and Women including Natasha Frater, Ariella Mastroianni, Brian McQueen, Blaire O'Leary, and Jeffrey Buck Wright Jr.

When and How do I get tickets?

Until Proven Guilty has one more show left On Sunday, August 12th @ 6pm

For tickets https://untilprovenguilty.brownpapertickets.com

Tickets will also be available for purchase in person half an hour prior to performance. Cash only.

Rising Star

Alexandra Sauser-Monnig of Mountain Man Shares Lead A-Side “Gem.”

Back are the days of 1990's double side singles, at least for Mountain Man's ASM in her latest solo project

ASM has announced her debut double A-side single, Fantasy Boyfriend, which will be released on July 24, 2018 via Psychic Hotline.

There's a patience in the little things. The arc of sticky summers brimming and eventually cooling, grasses overgrowing before being cut to stubs, creeks rushing to an eventual trickle, night skies growing darker before dawn breaks. In stillness and in presence, these archetypes pervade our experience and teach us lessons as old as time and reflexive in every organism's makeup. This clarity is present in every note of " Gem" and "Grasses," the two songs that comprise Fantasy Boyfriend. Starting small on a creaky old guitar, a single voice in the air, these meditations were brought to life by Sauser-Monnig over the winter in a tiny house at the center of a creative commune. It's a compass set, an intention stated, a window flung open to let the summer air in -- buoyant, resilient, golden.

When off of the flower farm and out of the weaving house, the NC-based Sauser-Monnig has spent time in recent years touring with Feist and recording with artists including Sylvan Esso ('Echo Mountain Sessions'), Hiss Golden Messenger, and Tift Merritt.

ASM will perform next at the Cat's Cradle in Carrboro, NC on August 8th, with more shows to be announced soon

Matt Condon

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Interview | Ashe's New EP "The Rabbit Hole" Is Out

We Got A Chance to Sit Down With Ashe Upon The Release of Her Newest EP.

Photo by Leslie Colon

Ashe's alt-pop style and sunny, vintage vocals have earned her quite the buzz.

She recently released her new single "Choirs" that has amassed over 870k streams on Spotify. Compounding her previous success, which saw her accumulate 200 million streams and nine Hype Machine #1s with "Girl Who Cried Wolf" and "Used to It" (as well as her Louis The Child collaborations "World on Fire" and "Right To It"), Ashe was recently announced as one of VEVO dscvr's Artists to Watch for 2018. Having played select dates this summer with Lewis Capaldi, Ashe recently wrapped up a tour with Lauv and previously traveled Northern America while performing alongside Big Gigantic, Louis The Child, Shawn Frank, Whethan, and the Chainsmokers. Now, her very own brand of psych-pop is poised to make a splash in 2018 with her debut EP The Rabbit Hole and the recently-released single "Choirs."

Popdust's Megan Oots got a chance to sit down with Ashe and chat about the inspiration behind The Rabbit Hole which deals with existentialism, escapism, the human condition, and love.

Ashe says her favorite song on The Rabbit Hole is "Real Love"

Real Love was also one of the first songs she finished and it blazed the way for the others. Real love is about loving others regardless of where they come from and encourages us to focus on the commonalities between all people. She was inspired to write "Real Love" by the social political turmoil that commenced after the 2016 presidential election. Ashe hopes people that listen to "Real Love" unify in their joy, and develop more empathy and compassion for one another.

Follow Ashe on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

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RELEASE RADAR | Premiere from Monikers


RELEASE RADAR | Premiere from Kris Gruen

Frontpage Popular News

Mipso's "Moonlight" Is Perfect for A Summer Chill Session

Mipso recently released the official music video for their hit song "Moonlight" along with new summer tour dates.

If you aren't a fan already, you must check out the tasty twang and soft palpable poetry of North Carolina's hottest indie-americana band, Mipso.

You know the sort of music that takes you back to sweet youthful summers and warms your heart with the echo of the past? Yet still, you recognize that its only an echo and that those times are over. Mipso's "Moonlight" does exactly that. North Carolina's indie-Americana darlings Mipso have released the official video for their track " Moonlight," from their critically acclaimed new album Edges Run.

The video illustrates the familiar and all-too-human emotion of feeling alone, even while surrounded by those you love the most. Songwriter Joseph Terrell explains, "I wrote 'Moonlight' after a breakup while I drove all day back to North Carolina from where I'd been living in Boston. I was sitting in summer traffic on the worst highway in America in a rented minivan full of all my stuff, and I kind of just had to laugh. There's that voice in your head that wants to tell the world, 'I'm totally fine!' when you're anything but."

The video release accompanies the band's announcement of a run of additional summer tour dates this August. Venturing to the Western mountain states, Mipso bring their captivating live show to Montana, Colorado, and Utah.


They can also be seen playing festivals this summer, including the Blue Ox Music Festival in Eau Claire, WI, Clearwater's Great Hudson River Revival, the Calgary Folk Festival, and Hopscotch Music Festival in Raleigh, NC this September.


6/14/18 - Blue Ox Music Festival - Eau Claire, WI

6/16/18 - Clearwater's Great Hudson River Revival - Croton-On-Hudson, NY

7/13/18 - Red Wing Roots Music Festival - Mt. Solon, VA

7/14/18 - The Down Home - Johnson City, TN

7/28/18 - Calgary Folk Music Festival - Calgary, Canada

8/1/18 - Yellowstone Brewing - Billings, MT

8/2/18 - Top Hat Lounge – Missoula, MT

8/4/18 – Sweet Pea Festival – Bozeman, MT

8/5/18 – Mishawaka Amphitheatre – Bellvue, CO

8/6/18 – Chautauqua Auditorium – Boulder, CO

8/9/18 – Urban Lounge – Salt Lake City, UT

8/11/18 – Lake Dillion Amphitheatre – Dillon, CO

8/16/18 - Narrows Center for the Arts - Fall River, MA

8/17/18 - Green Mountain Bluegrass & Roots - Manchester,VT

9/6/18 - Hopscotch Music Festival - Raleigh, NC

9/15/18 - Whale Rock Music Festival - Templeton, CA

Mipso's fourth album, Edges Run, has received praise from critics and fans alike. The album's first two singles - "People Change" and the title track "Edges Run" have received over 5 million streams on Spotify so far, with placement on prominent Spotify Playlists.

Mipso has always been a creative democracy, and on Edges Run the band takes this ideal to greater lengths than ever before. "We'd all seen a lot of change in a short period," says Sharp of the time between the band's recent 2016 release, Coming Down The Mountain, and Edges Run - recorded in early 2017. "Three of us moved out of the Triangle area and into other places. We had relationships end and deaths of friends and family members." Those events alone could account for the deeply introspective themes on Edges Run, recorded during the dead of winter in Eugene, Oregon. "We were beginning to feel, probably for the first time, that youth was more behind us than ahead, and so I think we were all feeling different pressures closing in," says Sharp. So the band took a step back to consider their songs-in-progress — and took a leap of faith in traveling far from their North Carolina comfort zone to record in Oregon with producer (and bassist) Todd Sickafoose (Ani DiFranco, Andrew Bird, Anaïs Mitchell). They carried with them into the sessions a desire to stretch themselves beyond previously known roads of composition and performance. For the first time, Mipso came to the studio with sketches of songs rather than fully-fleshed arrangements and decided to co-write songs together, also a first for the band. Call it a new level of confidence or a developing collective consciousness, but with five years as a band and hundreds of nights on the road together, with the release of Edges Run Mipso retains its traditional roots while becoming thoroughly modern, intuitive musicians with the ability to transcend conventions and embrace what lies ahead. "We have a better idea of what we can do, and how we want to do it," says Sharp.

Praise for Mipso's Edges Run

"Best New Music" – American Songwriter

"Mipso defy boundaries and limitations on " Edges Run," the entrancing title-track from their forthcoming record…" - Americana Music Association

"Mipso has discovered that rare chemistry of four people coming together and uncorking bottled lightning with every tour and trip to the studio." - Cincinnati City Beat

"Catchy and radiant, moody and meditative, [the songs will] touch you on many different levels." - PopMatters

" Edges Run...pushes the boundaries...while maintaining everything Mipso do really well. It's honest and... asks you to listen closely. The instrumentation is rich, while still convincing you that it's simple"- Red Line Roots

"...showcasing the group's tight harmonies and musicianship…[and] venturing further intoalt-country…territory." - Washington Post

"[Mipso's Edges Run] balances heavy heartbreak and introspection with poppy, good-times acoustic pop. It's a good spectrum for the quartet, in that it allows for a wide sonic and emotional range." - No Depression

"Mipso's stellar use of harmony and deep layers of sound bring out a level of maturity comparable to Neil Young, Fleet Foxes and Fleetwood Mac." - Triad City Beat

"'Artist You Need To Know' The quartet's winsome Americana is as catchy and easygoing as ever." – Rolling Stone

"[Edges Run] solidifies Mipso's position in the modern folk movement." - Amplifier Magazine

"Mipso separates from the pack with an introspective, at times dark set of songs that emphasize atmosphere over monolithic strumming and draw from folk, old-school country and modern pop with equal enthusiasm. It's the sound of a band embracing adulthood and finding its sound." - Bend Bulletin

Follow Mipso on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Megan Oots is Popdust writer based in New York City. She loves the sun, cooking, and playing with dogs.

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Top Stories

Tash Sultana Takes The Stage And Steals Our Hearts

With Unparalleled Technicality and Freedom, Tash Sultna's Tunes Make Waves at Govornor's Ball NYC 2018

I first discovered Tash Sultana while hunting for new music. This is rare for me. I am the person that listens to the same two artists on repeat for years, ( I love you, Avett Brothers, and Dr Dog). So for me, it seems like fate that I stumbled upon Tash Sultana, who broke my repeat habit to immerse me in a world of unexpected, yet perfectly placed, soundscaped rhythms paired with transcendental vocals. She has since held a steady spot on my "most played" list.

She's Australian born and music raised. Tash plays over 20 musical instruments. I was fortunate enough to see her play many of them at Governor's Ball NYC.

Photo By Megan Oots

Her performance was incredible. I made sure to stay front and center while others chilled on the notorious Gov Ball Hill that faced the Bacardi Stage where she performed. No matter where were are when you first hear her music, it's sure to make your head turn.

Photo By Megan Oots

AND Thursday was Tash's 23rd Birthday!


Follow Tash Sultana on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

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