A Tweeted History of Cage the ElephantSupporting Cage the Elephant was my first taste of hipsterdom. When I saw the band open for Stone Temple Pilots in 2010, I was one of the fifteen audience members who knew the words and stood by the stage. The hundreds of seated attendees who had never heard of the opener could see that I was a real fan.With every step the band took toward mainstream success, I tried to claim them as my own. I broadcasted my excitement for Cage the Elephant releases on Facebook (Figure 1). I refused to take pictures on my flip phone after their concert, fearing I might somehow replace my home-screen photo of lead singer Matt Schultz jumping into the audience.When I heard the single from their 2013 album Melophobia inside an elevator, I knew I had to accept that Cage the Elephant was popular.
Known for mixing elements of First Nations music with EDM, Canadian DJs A Tribe Called Red explore a range of genres on their third album, We Are the Halluci Nation. Pitchfork praises the release as “some of the heaviest and most infectious sounds around,” going as far as to say, “This album is critical listening for everyone.” A Tribe Called Red will be performing at The Sinclair on Saturday, March 18.JK: I’d love to start by talking about the intersection of art and politics. Do you see yourself primarily as an activist? As an artist? Do you think the two are fundamentally tied together?BW: They can be for sure. In my case personally, I don’t really see myself as an activist. I see myself as indigenous. The activism isn’t really a choice for an indigenous person. It’s a part of life.JK: Is it irritating that the public perception of your art can be connected to your heritage and political causes that you haven’t necessarily chosen? Or does it feel like an honor to be part of that tradition?BW: It’s a responsibility really.