[Preview] Catch the Emancipator Ensemble w/ Real Magic & Blockhead | Jan. 18 @ Cannery Ballroom


Let’s be honest: there’s a huge appeal these day for tripped out, chill music. Putting a genre or label on this style of music is fairly hard (trip hop maybe?), but acts of the likes of Bonobo and Tycho keep on resurfacing to continue the legacies of Nightmares on Wax and Boards of Canada. Of course, at the forefront of this “chill-tronica” movement is Portland native Emancipator. Known far and wide for his relaxing tracks like “Soon It Will Be Cold Enough”, Emancipator has established himself as a staple on the festival circuit and a favorite artist of thousands of fans. However, like any decent artist, Emancipator was born with a need to improve and reinvent himself into something new and different, and out of that need the Emancipator Ensemble was born. This group plays live renditions of Emancipator tunes on actual instruments and has been on tour for several dates together. Their stop in Nashville is tomorrow, January 18th, at the Cannery Ballroom. Tickets are $20, the show is 18+, and the openers, Real Magic and Blockhead, will begin at and 9:45respectively. Both of those openers are fantastic acts, and fans are highly recommended to show up early and catch the entire show.


It’s tough to describe Emancipator’s music without getting into cliche and ultimately meaningless phrases like “the peaceful swell of the synth pads lulls the audience into a tranquil state of bliss.” However, those phrases have become cliche for good reason; Emancipator is simply one of the chillest, most relaxing artists on the market today. Now that the group has expanded into the Emancipator genre, it should be exciting to see how well they can pull off these highly electronic tunes. This will definitely be one of the best shows this weekend, and we give it our highest recommendation to fans and readers looking for something to do this Saturday.


Yes, it sounds like an insult your grandma might use, but Blockhead is also the stage name for hip hop producer Tony Simon. Simon has worked with artists like Aesop Rock and Open Mike Eagle, which should give readers an indication of the quality his beats take. Blockhead’s music mesmerizing, trippy, and fun most of all. Take a listen to the track below and see what you think.


Real Magic might be a little more electronic than Emancipator and a little less organic than Blockhead, but don’t let that fool you into thinking this Oakland native is not the perfect opening act for the evening. Real Magic’s tunes are hypnotic and mysteriously draw the listener in, leaving fans rabidly wanting more. You too can experience the addicting effect of Real Magic by showing up at 9 p.m. at the Cannery Ballroom. See you there!

Emancipator, Blockhead, and Real Magic will perform Jan. 18 at the Cannery Ballroom. The show is 18+, begins at at 9 p.m. (doors at 8 p.m.), and tickets are available for $15.

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