Millennial South Carolina music fans have grown up with the music of Chaz Bundick aka Toro Y Moi. Pre 2009 his indie rock band The Heist and The Accomplice had quite the local buzz even when they were in high school, bringing out crowds to New Brookland Tavern and local festivals like Columbia SC’s St. Patrick’s Day Festival in 5 Points. Although successful on a local level, they seemed to have hit a wall. Also note that Bundick was in school at the University of South Carolina. Then Toro Y Moi popped up. We’ve got an early video in the vaults where Bundick played at New Brookland Tavern after Austin Crane, with a laptop on a table and about 20 people standing still in front of him. I didn’t even stay until the last song because I was bored and it was late. It was around this time that the internet buzz surrounding his music started, then Carpark came along, then Causers of This dropped. It all happened quickly and the local hype following seemed to follow as the national press rolled in. Unlike many blog buzz bands, Chaz Bundick and crew deserve the hype, and they’ve proven it with the versatility in their first three albums, the release of b-sides, and a stellar full band live show.
The rise of Toro Y Moi to the upper echelon of the alternative music world has been a unique one. A blog band, turned to a web band, they still make waves via the internet with little radio airplay support outside of the college radio realm. Their steady tour schedule with major festivals sprinkled in keeps them relevant. They are pioneering a new way of music marketing.
So, there’s your quick historical recap of the band. This week they come back to South Carolina with a new album in tow, their February 2013 release Anything in Return. The new album is a slight change of pace – the product of a move to Berkley, CA, lyrically the album focuses on relationships and being away from loved ones. His vocals and lyrics take a back seat to Bundick’s stellar instrumentation of the songs, mixing a wide array of genres from disco to modern house music in a compelling new way.
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Free Tickets to Toro Y Moi at The Columbia Museum of Art
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