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Wiz Khalifa mixes his music with the marijuana business.


DEAR READERS, For more than 15 years, WENDOH Media (the publisher of Vegas Seven) has been Las Vegas’ leading multimedia company with a major stake in magazines, websites and large-scale events. The backbone of WENDOH Media is creative storytelling; whether it is through our digital news and entertainment channels or the fine-tuned brand stories that we create for clients, our focus is on positively impacting our neighborhood, our community and our world. We pride ourselves on connecting our readers to the stories that must be told in this city and beyond. We are excited to announce our transition to an all-digital platform that will house award-winning content and industry-leading creativity. With proprietary digital engagement strategies, WENDOH Media will deliver our stories to a wider audience than ever before. And while this will be our last regular print issue of Vegas Seven, please find a continued commitment to storytelling on our websites as well as on our associated social media channels. Thank you, The Vegas Seven Staff

OUR SITES TO SEE

VegasSeven.com Buy Your Whiskey by the Barrel In nearby Goodsprings, Nevada, the Pioneer Saloon equips patrons with their own chemistry set in its whiskey barrel-aging program.

DTLV.com White Castle Soon To Sling Sliders on Fremont The beloved burger shop gets ready to open its doors this month on Fourth and Fremont Streets.

RunRebs.com The Armani Rogers Era Is Here UNLV might finally have a playmaker at quarterback and can start thinking about the possibility of a bowl game in 2017.

SpyOnVegas.com The Hookup Find upcoming events, see highlights from the hottest parties, meet the DJs and more.

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

SEPTEMBER 21–27, 2017 LIFE IS BEAUTIFUL

14 Okuda San Miguel

34 Life of a Cocktail

BY MARK ADAMS

BY XANIA V. WOODMAN

16 Fresh Paint

PLUS: Festival

A modern-day Michelangelo debuts in Las Vegas.

Six ways to refresh while inside the footprint. bites

Checking in with six festival muralists. BY JESSIE O’BRIEN

22 Baby-Making Beats

Alternative R&B act Shy Girls will have the crowd feeling the love.

TRAVEL SMART PARK SMART

Concerts, nightclubs, food and experiences.

23 Beautiful Obstacles

BY JASON R. LATHAM

BY SHANNON MILLER

THERE ARE MULTIPLE WAYS TO GET TO T-MOBILE ARENA:

24 Seven Things To

• Parkmobile: Reserve your parking at lasvegas.parkmobile.com

Know About Broods

Unfamiliar with the New Zealand pop duo? Allow us to fill you in.

• UBER: First ride free up to $20 with code: TMobileArena First-time riders only. Expires: 12/31/2020

BY AMBER SAMPSON

• TAXI

26 Two Acts,

• Walking from nearby properties

Same Time

How to remedy the weekend’s scheduling conflicts.

Visit tmobilearena.com for upcoming season schedule & up to date parking information.

What To Do After Dark

BY MARK ADAMS

After recovering from life-threatening illness, Tokimonsta returns with a new album.

ATTENTION VEGAS GOLDEN KNIGHTS FANS

SEVEN NIGHTS

BY SEVEN STAFF

Smoking the Competition Wiz Khalifa owns the rap game and the weed game. BY LISSA TOWNSEND RODGERS

[ Play Here ] Where to feel festival vibes beyond the gates. BY JESSI C. ACUÑA

[ Now Pouring ] Corduroy transcends time and place with its nostalgic menu. BY XANIA V. WOODMAN PLUS: How to stand out in a sea of cutoffs

28 Rachel Platten

Speaking to inspire young women. BY CAMILLE CANNON

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Get to know the LIFE IS BEAUTIFUL acts. Learn about Downtown’s new kaleidoscopic murals. Find tips on how to navigate schedule conflicts. And see what’s on the mouthwatering menu. Here is Vegas Seven’s guide to tasting, seeing and hearing all the festival has to offer from the first afternoon set to the final headliner.

A Modern-Day Michelangelo

Okuda San M igu el

debuts in Las Vegas

By Mark Adams


W

LIFE IS BEAUTIFUL

hile artists throughout the late 1400s and early 1500s created elaborate frescoes inside churches and palaces that are now some of history’s most recognized works of art, that medium has somewhat waned over the course of the last 400-plus years. “The truth, today, [is that it] is quite hard for one artist to work on a church. It is more a thing of Renaissance or classic [painters],” says well-known Spanish urban street artist Okuda San Miguel, 36, who has completed entire visual transformations of not one but three churches around the globe. He has even called the Kaos Temple in Llanera, Spain, which he adorned with the vibrant geometric shapes he has come to be known for, his own Sistine Chapel. But the modern-day Michelangelo (a description he calls “funny” in an interview with Vegas Seven) isn’t a one-trick pony. In addition to the mural works with which he has decorated city blocks all over the world, the artist is also an accomplished sculptor and photographer. And this weekend he’s making his Las Vegas debut with both a mural and sculpture installation at the Life Is Beautiful Music & Art Festival. The sculpture he has created is a giant, multicolored bear, using interesting geometric combinations to make the beast come to life. Vegas Seven was eager to hear what he had in store for the accompanying mural, his thoughts on Las Vegas as a visual-art destination and what his bold, bright creativity will add to the streets of Downtown. You have created both a sculpture and a mural for Life Is Beautiful this year. Will the mural communicate with the sculpture in any way? Will the two works be related at all? No. This time I [have] another concept: Venus located around my own natural landscape. Las Vegas has quite a distinct visual culture, especially with the use of neon. Have you ever been here? What are your thoughts on the city? I was there 10 years ago. It was very funny because I went for the Latin Grammy Awards, where my friend La Mala Rodríguez won an award. She invited me to every private and special event for the Grammys’ artists. It was fun. I really enjoy the crazy lights of the city, and I love the fact that Las Vegas never sleeps. With the Life Is Beautiful murals and nearby installations, like Ugo Rondinone’s “Seven Magic Mountains,” it seems that Las Vegas is undergoing a transformation toward becoming a true visual-art destination. Would you agree? It looks like Vegas is bringing [in] more culture and art. It’s a perfect place to bring art [to] the street. It can only be better and more beautiful when you mix the lights and the architecture with the installations and murals. Had you heard of the Life Is Beautiful festival prior to being asked to create works for it? Yes. I [had] because I have worked with [mural curators] Justkids in the past. Justkids is [one] of the best urban art curators. They produce really nice street art events around the world, including Life Is Beautiful. I was invited last year to a very good project [with them] in Arkansas, and I experienced how professional they are. I am super-happy to do the big sculpture and the big wall this year with them at Life Is Beautiful. Freedom, or the duality of freedom and oppression, often inspires the art you create. With that being said, do you intend for your works to make political or social statements? My work talks about this duality because capitalism tells us we are free, but we are really oppressed by the system. Money rules everything and then [causes] corruption in different levels all across society. It is a fake freedom. Who or what molded or impacted your personal style? My work relates to artists like [Takashi] Murakami, [Salvador] Dalí, [René] Magritte, Mark Ryden, Roy Lichtenstein. I discovered some of them in my academic [career] and [they] have been an inspiration in my evolution as an artist. Looking through your portfolio on your website, I couldn’t help but notice that it seems you’ve really honed a signature style in the past five years or so. The works became much more vibrant and you started to focus on the intricate geometric forms you’re known for. Was there a reason for that shift? I believe it all [is] just part of my progression as an artist. [I am] very influenced by [my] constant traveling around the planet, [which] started five years or so ago. One thing that Life Is Beautiful aims to do is to create pause for attendees—to inspire them to reflect, to live in the moment, to enjoy the here and now. Does your art speak to that idea? Yes. My work invites the people to reflect about concepts like identity, the meaning of life, nature, capitalism, modernity, roots, love or freedom. 7


LIFE IS BEAUTIFUL

Bicicleta Sem Freio By Jessie O’Brien

Fresh Paint Photography Krystal Ramirez

Ch ecki ng i n with six festiva l a rtists

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September 21ñ27, 2017 vegasseven.com

You can hear the sounds of Downtown vibrating off the wall where Bicicleta Sem Freio created its new mural, which features some cool cats playing music themselves. Loud and vivid, Brazilian duo Renato Reno and Douglas de Castro’s latest piece conveys noise and the night in a city that rises after the sun sets. “We wanted to do something fun and colorful and relate it to music because of the Life Is Beautiful Festival,” de Castro says. “And to also relate it to the night. This is why the [musicians] are cats because they are night creatures.” Armed with house paint, brushes and straw hats, Sem Freio and their team quickly completed the project. Maybe it’s because they were already close friends with this particular wall on the east side of The Market (611 Fremont St.). In 2013, the artists covered the canvas in wheat pasted concert posters, which was replaced with two serene women in a garden in 2014, which was replaced this year with what you see now. (Their first large-scale piece was created for Life Is Beautiful in 2013 where the Felipe Pantone mural is now located.) But they’re not sentimental about their previous projects being gone, despite the time and sweat spent on creating the large and fleeting murals. “I am more into the process than collecting my walls,” Reno says. De Castro adds: “It’s nice to have a wall in different countries and connect with the community, but I think [getting attached to them] is an ego thing. [Like] ‘Oh my precious wall, please don’t touch it.’”


Thisismybworld Fresh eyes and an outside perspective will make you notice things you may have gotten used to. Like when your mom says you’ve put on weight after not seeing her for a few months, sometimes those perspectives are not flattering. The Thisismybworld (also known as b.) piece on the parking garage near Las Vegas Boulevard and Carson Avenue reminds us of the unflattering side to Las Vegas and American culture. “The word ‘more’ is the keyword for Vegas. More of it. More money. More food. More everything,” b. says. The Greek artist’s work often highlights mass consumption and the effects that has on us and the environment with cluttered and overwhelming compositions. His busy wall incorporates iconic Vegas symbols and stereotypical American junk food—a fat Elvis front and center, a smoking Vegas Vic, pizza, burgers, fries, pills and booze. This piece in particular comments on instant gratification and fast food in Las Buffetgas. As someone who is consciously aware of symbols, b. says that the dollar sign is particularly prevalent in this city, which is why it is repeated multiple times on the wall. “The dollar bill, it’s iconic. It’s not like any other currency,” he says, adding that you will see it pasted everywhere in this town—on billboards and posters and inside casinos. “You can feel that money is moving things and [that] the whole city moves around money.” Though b.’s work can be deceiving, the ideas behind them are often serious while the colors and characters are childlike and fun. “With the happy feeling and bright colors, I am luring the viewer, but then later they realize that the message is the exact opposite.”

September 21–27, 2017 vegasseven.com

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Kevin Lyons There are only a few basic human emotions but thousands of ways to express them, and Kevin Lyons’ monsters run the spectrum, from over-caffeinated anxiety attack to too stoned to see straight. The Brooklyn artist who is known for these fuzzy rascals has done commercial work, graphic design, illustration and art directing. But he brought his “greatest hits”—his monsters— to the eastside wall of The Writer’s Block (1020 Fremont St.). The monsters look like they could be inspired from the faces of hundreds of people, but are actually Lyons himself. “They are really self portraits in different ways. If you Google a picture of me you will see me screaming and yelling,” he says. “ The rest is nostalgia in my head.” Lyons is influenced by Jim Henson, Garfield and cartoons from his childhood, which is why Lyons’ fans range from kids to their parents who remember those same images from their own childhood. He says if he’s giving a kid a sticker, he’ll notice the eager look of dads resisting the urge to ask for one themselves. “There is a certain sense of, ‘I know what that reminds me of and it reminds me of something really joyful.’” Certain characters will appear out of nowhere and he’ll start to incorporate them in future walls. The mouthless fluffs are new characters that were born on East Fremont. The little dude with the hat in the top right corner has appeared on every one of Lyons’ walls since 2016. “I started in Detroit last year; I start every mural with him now,” he says. “It just became this thing. It’s like the beginning of the sentence. It’s like the word ‘the’ to me and I can’t stop it.” He says people also like the monsters because they’re looking at furry reflection. “When the work is finished, people tend to find themselves in the wall,” he says. “‘That’s me when I woke up’ and ‘that’s me tonight’ or ‘that’s me before coffee.’ So there is a nice little joke that comes with it.” And people will be able to hang out with all of them at this year’s festival. “The characters are just having a good time and partying with everybody else at Life Is Beautiful, too,” he says. “That’s what my characters really are. They’re an assemblage of one big party.”


LIFE IS BEAUTIFUL

Morag Myerscough Desert dwellers are too familiar with the sun. Its power and heat can direct our lives, keeping us locked in with the shades drawn or pulling us outside to feel its warmth. British designer Morag Myerscough’s temporary installation for Life Is Beautiful nudges us to take advantage of the sunshine. The phrase “Surrender to its warm embrace” will line the walls on the outside of an old motel near Seventh Street and Stewart Avenue in yellow neon letters. But the message doesn’t have to be taken so literally, it is meant to create a sense of belonging at the festival. “I think the hardest thing for me is to come up with is the idea in the first place,” Myerscough says, adding she was intrigued by the location of the motel. “I think I need to go to a therapist to try and get it out quicker. I’m always fraught with trauma until I get it out.” Once it is out, her projects can take anywhere from two to three weeks to complete. Myerscough—who is known for her vibrant colors, geometric patterns and typography—and her small team worked without cutting any corners in the face of the time constraint. “I like everything really perfect, like super perfect,” she says. So although friends have asked her to use vinyl to save time, Myerscough and her team cut, stenciled and hand-painted tedious layers of paint on around 100 pieces of plywood. She prefers the paint because of a richer color and its ability to reflect light better. The artificial neon against the wood grain creates a striking juxtaposition. The completed letters looked beautiful on their own leaning against the old motel, half in shadows, waiting to be installed. “I love putting things in a situation that you don’t expect and they’re just there,” she says. “Obviously, I like the whole big piece together, but I like those moments.” She even likes the scaffolding itself. “I have a fetish,” she says, laughing. “Seeing backs of signs and just the backs—I don’t really like what’s on the front.”

September 21ñ27, 2017 vegasseven.com

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LIFE IS BEAUTIFUL

Faile One half of Faile, Patrick McNeil, seemed surprised about the limited visibility of his 21-story canvas on the west side of the Plaza Hotel & Casino (1 S. Main St.). Fellow artists Shepard Fairey and D*Face’s works landed the prime real estate facing the highly trafficked Main Street, while Faile’s piece is on display to an empty lot and the 95 onramp. So what does the Brooklyn-based artist think of his mural’s home? “Oh, I don’t care,” he says. “It is what it is. I’m just happy to be here in the Plaza. The Plaza’s cool. It’s one of the first hotels I visited when I first came to Las Vegas in ‘86.” He was around 11 years old at the time and he remembers the lights and excitement at night. Both he and his partner Patrick Miller came up with the concept for the piece, keeping Las Vegas in mind. It’s their take on the famous Cassius Marcellus Coolidge paintings of dogs sitting around a poker table. Dogs often appear in their work. “A lot of the characters that are men usually tend to be animals,” McNeil says. Although the guys on his team seem to be pretty refined. “The guys that we work with

Zest French graffiti artist Zest (also known as Franck Noto) has been tagging walls since he was 14 years old. Now 37, his style has shifted multiple times, especially in the studio and on canvas, but he says the inspiration has always been graffiti. With the translation help of Justkids curator, Charlotte Dutoit, Zest says when he was younger, his work was edgier and more energetic. Now he has slowed down and takes more time, especially in the studio. But the reason for the changes is simply a natural progression of growth rather than being prompted by a specific moment in his life. His latest piece is a diptych wall at the west end of the Art Motel (225 N. Seventh St.). It’s an abstract, zoomed-in look at graffiti depicting the different tools used to make street art. Lines with sharp edges represent a large flat-tipped Sharpie. The prominent blue with the round edges portray Baranne shoe polish that Zest used to use as a plan B when he didn’t have the traditional materials. The warmer colors depict the spray can marks. He also likes the contrast of the calm and quiet blue and the vigorous warm tones that similarly reflect his styles as a younger artist to now. Dutoit adds the blue could represent his home. He is from the south of France where the “good French come from,” where the ocean and sunshine are and where people are more relaxed. It’s just like that in life, Zest says: A mixture of peace and energy.

are awesome,” he says. “They’re all vegetarian. No smoking. No hangovers the next day. Everyone’s super pro and super fun to work with.” And it’s not something he gets to do too often. “I like getting out of the studio because 95 percent of my life is pretty routine. Home, work, home, work. I don’t go out a lot,” he says. “In the studio you’re constantly thinking about the next moves and painting and trying to navigate that through the day. It just feels relaxing to get up on a wall, have headphones on, and it’s really color by numbers kind of stuff. It’s nice.”


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LIFE IS BEAUTIFUL

BabyMaking Beats

By Mark Adams

Some call it “hipster R&B.” Others, “PBR&B.” Even “bedroom R&B” has been used to describe alternative R&B. Whatever you call it, though, it’s easy to hear that Dan Vidmar of Shy Girls has already mastered the genre in a short five years, oozing cool vocals—and passionate emotion—over restrained synth work and filtered percussion. Following a string of EPs and singles, which received critical praise from publications like Noisey and Pitchfork, the Portland, Oregon-based artist released his debut studio album, Salt, in January. The latest effort is a mesmerizing soundtrack of melancholia—and while Vidmar says past releases were influenced by love, Salt finds the musician musing on something more, well, mature. “The last EPs that I put out previous to Salt were actually more about specific relationships with people. This album was more about my relationship with myself and growing up and getting older,” Vidmar says in an interview with Vegas Seven. “[It’s] about entering my late 20s, about to turn 30, kind of figuring out what my life is. It was a much more personal record in that regard.” While Vidmar’s smooth pipes and emotive lyrics sound like they’d be experienced best in an intimate concert hall, the artist has had plenty of practice figuring out how to present Shy Girls in larger

Alternative R&B act Shy Girls will have the crowd feeling the love

spaces. In 2014, the artist toured with soft-rock throwback act Haim, soulful R&B crooner Maxwell and indie rockers Little Dragon. And on September 22, he’ll add to that experience when he takes the stage at Life Is Beautiful Music & Art Festival. “Even though it’s a solo project, there’s a full band that tours with me,” Vidmar says, adding that the band includes musicians on keyboards, drums, saxophone and guitar, all being played live. But how does Vidmar plan to connect with the thousands descending on Downtown’s streets this weekend? “We’ve done the festival circuit a little bit before. We’re usually playing in the afternoon—there are no lights and darkness. Our whole touring show revolves around [an] ambiance and a lighting show, so when we do the festival shows it’s actually really interesting to see, because it lifts that veil and kind of reveals this really raw, honest performance. It’s a lot of fun for us.” And Vidmar says he also plans to have some fun offstage. In addition to his plans to catch former tourmates Haim at the festival (and “definitely Chance [the Rapper] if I can; I would see Blink-182, as well”), the musician also is hoping to venture farther out. “I think Vegas is a great destination for a festival,” he says. “From what I’ve heard, there’s also a cool [local] live music scene in Vegas. I’m curious to check [that] out.” 7

Shy Girls September 22, 4:20 p.m., Ambassador Stage.


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Less than a week ago, Los Angeles– based DJ and producer Jennifer Lee— better known by her stage name, Tokimonsta—kicked off a tour promoting her fifth full-length album, Lune Rouge, to be released October 6. That tour includes a stop at Las Vegas’ very own Life Is Beautiful Music & Art Festival, as she plays the Fremont Stage on September 24. Tokimonsta’s past collaborations with Gavin Turek, MNDR and Anderson .Paak have fueled the artist’s increasing popularity. That synergetic spirit lives on in her latest album, with tracks featuring veteran synthpop singer-songwriter MNDR and new names like Isaiah Rashad (of Top Dawg Entertainment), Yuna, Selah Sue and Io Echo. The collaborative effort harnessed inspiration from different corners of the globe to produce what Lee calls her most personal piece of work to date. Lee was diagnosed with Moyamoya, a rare brain disease, at the end of 2015. After undergoing surgery, Lee struggled with aphasia—a complication from the surgery that caused her to lose her ability to understand language, speak and even make music. In a piece she wrote for Pitchfork about her struggle with the disease, she said, “Sadness allowed me to regain some clarity. I knew I had to overcome it.” And Tokimonsta has wasted no time facing some of the toughest challenges she’s ever faced. Vegas Seven caught up with her to talk about the new album and seeing the beauty in life. “Don’t Call (featuring Yuna)” was the first single off Lune Rouge. It sounds like it’s about heartbreak. Why did you choose to open with that one? I lead with that because it was just one of the songs that resonated. … I really enjoyed the whole process of making it with [Yuna]. It’s interesting because when we were talking about it, we were … discussing things like people she’s had in her life who just kind of come out of nowhere. [People who are] trying to call to get you back and they never treat you quite right.

By Shannon Miller Photography Nikko Lamere Tokimonsta Sunday, 5:35 p.m., Fremont Stage Find more of our interview at vegasseven.com/tokimonsta

Do you ever contribute vocals to your own songs? Yes, I do. I’m very low-key about it. My own voice, it’s a tool I have at hand and it’s not easy for me to call someone to sing. … I use my own voice as more like a texture or more like another instrument. … With this new album, I do sing on it … I contribute vocals on that “Bibimbap” song. … That’s extra rhythmic kind of stuff, not singing. I’m not a super-awesome singer and I’m aware of that. I think to really create my vision for a song, sometimes it’s necessary to have [another musician] come in and sing it, because I’m just not equipped to do anything really complicated. “Life is beautiful”—true or false? If everything was beautiful all the time, what [would] beauty be? You need [the ugly] to appreciate the other. … I would say this from my own personal experiences. When you live through the ugly side of life, you really do see how beautiful and amazing it is. 7

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S O M E P E O P LE S T I LL AR E N ’ T FA M I LIAR W I T H R I S I N G N E W Z EALAN D P O P D U O B R O O DS —Y E T. I N 2 0 1 3 , S I B LI N G S C ALE B AN D G E O R G IA N OT T D E B U T E D W I T H “ B R I D G ES ,” A S I N G LE T HAT S OAR E D TO N O . 8 O N T H E I S LAN D NAT I O N ’ S TO P 4 0 S I N G LES C HART. O N T H E H E E LS O F T HAT S U CC ES S , T H E Y ’ V E D R O P P E D T WO LP S , R E C E I V E D 1 0 N E W Z EALAN D M U S I C AWAR DS AN D CO LLAB O RAT E D W I T H C HART-TO P P E RS S U C H A S TOV E LO AN D P O P P R O D I GY T R OY E S I VAN . B E F O R E T H E PAI R TAK ES T H E S TAG E AT LI F E I S B EAU T I F U L M U S I C & ART F ES T I VAL, H E R E AR E S E V E N T H I N G S TO K N O W AB O U T T H EM .

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THEY’RE FOSTER PARENTS. OK, OK. Maybe not foster parents to children, but close enough. The Notts recently took in three pit bulls. Caleb says it began with one dog their flatmate got from a guy who had seven in his apartment. One thing led to another and … “All of a sudden we had three giant pit bulls. They weren’t puppies at all,” he says. “They’re the sweetest things, and we’re just trying to find them homes before we have to go on a proper tour.”

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THEY USE THEIR TWITTER FOR GOOD. There’s no shortage of celebrities using Twitter to speak out on social issues, and this June, Broods joined the club. The Notts tweeted a video of themselves for the New Zealand Human Rights Commission’s Give Nothing to Racism Campaign, with the caption, “We’ll give no power to leaders with racist attitudes.” “Where we come from in New Zealand, it’s not really a place [where] a lot of people would think that racism exists. But it is there and it’s very subtle,” Caleb tells us. The duo is among many who’ve participated in the campaign, including Thor: Ragnarok director Taika Waititi and actor Sam Neill.

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SIBLING RIVALRY ISN’T THEIR THING. Caleb and Georgia have been performing together all their lives, and though that could be true about any band, their kinship is what keeps Broods airtight. “We’ve always been these mates. We’ve never really fought,” Caleb says in an interview with Vegas Seven. “If we do disagree, we can be super-blunt and no one gets hurt feelings.”

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THEY MAKE POP MUSIC, NOT CLUB ANTHEMS. Broods isn’t churning out your garden-variety Top 40. Much of what Georgia sings about is poignant, and far removed from the club bangers on the radio, but is still very much pop. This distinction makes the duo’s music a refreshing and relatable listen.

Broods Saturday; 4:25 p.m., Downtown Stage; 6 p.m., Toyota Music Den

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THEIR LIVE SHOW(S) WILL BE KILLER. “We have a lot of energy onstage. We start really dark and finish really heavy,” Caleb says, but the duo’s also slated to perform a stripped-down set at Toyota’s Music Den. Georgia’s breathy falsetto is studio-crisp, if not better, when singing these versions of their songs. Both performances are bound to be very different experiences.

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THEY’RE GETTING INSPIRED FOR NEW MATERIAL. Caleb admits he’s eager to get back into the studio, but meanwhile, he’s allowing other music to inspire him. “I’ve been listening to a lot of chill hip-hop,” he says. “I’m obsessed with Noname at the moment. I think she’s probably one of the coolest people on the planet. And I love the new Gorillaz record.”

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THEY HAVE LINEUP FAVORITES. Broods is already well-acquainted with the Life Is Beautiful lineup. The duo has opened for Haim and Two Door Cinema Club. And in 2016, they released “Heartlines,” a single cowritten by Lorde, who shared Broods’ producer, Joel Little. As to who’s on his must-see list, Caleb doesn’t hesitate: “I can’t wait to see Haim.”


, s t c A T wo e T i m e Sam

LIFE IS BEAUTIFUL

ScHoolboy Q vs. Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness

If you’re having a conflict with these two acts, kudos to you for having such wildly diverse tastes. Q is a former OxyContin-slangin’ Hoover Crip known for spitting head-busting raps. Andrew McMahon is not affiliated with any gangs that we know of, but the indie-pop darling has fronted Jack’s Mannequin and Something Corporate. If you’re in a mellow mood, start with the latter. But this is a festival, after all, so skip over to ScHoolboy just in time to turn up to “That Part.” ScHoolboy Q: Saturday, 7:25 p.m.–8:15 p.m., Downtown Stage; Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness: Saturday, 7:20 p.m.–8:10 p.m., Ambassador Stage —Z.M.

Blink-182 vs. Chance the Rapper

Really, this is a battle between nostalgia and now. If Chance’s festival set is anything like those on last year’s Magnificent Coloring World Tour, the hip-hop holy man will likely ease in with some lesser-known cuts before hitting you with “No Problem.” Meanwhile, Blink’s set is sure to be a sing-along of the soundtrack to your adolescence—“All the Small Things,” “What’s My Age Again?,” “The Rock Show” and so many more. Your best bet? Wear running shoes: Start with Blink, race to Chance, then haul ass back to the pop-punk trio for the finish. If you collapse, your friends can carry you home. Na na na na na na na. Blink-182: Friday, 11:15 p.m.–12:45 a.m., Ambassador Stage; Chance the Rapper: Friday, 11:25 p.m.–12:55 a.m., Downtown Stage –Zoneil Maharaj

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— Wh a t t h e H e l l D o Y ou D o? The xx vs. Haim

Muse vs. Wiz Khalifa vs. Kaskade

Are you ending your Saturday on the streets of Downtown with alternative rock, hip-hop or house? English rockers Muse have a pretty lengthy set that should be well-balanced between popular hits and deeper cuts, so start your Saturday-night finale with them. After you’ve gotten a sufficient fix, spend some time with Wiz and Kaskade—we suggest only a couple of tracks each, as both are regular headliners on the Strip— and then get back to the main stage to finish the night with Muse. The band’s laser light-fueled end should be nothing short of epic. Muse: Saturday, 10:50 p.m.– 12:35 a.m., Downtown Stage; Wiz Khalifa: Saturday, 11:35 p.m.–12:50 a.m., Ambassador Stage; Kaskade: Saturday, 11:45 p.m.–1 a.m., Fremont Stage —Mark Adams

Don’t mind us, that’s just the sound of our hearts breaking. Choosing between the melancholic melodies of the xx and the retro rock revival that is Haim is like telling your dad he can pull off a male romper: You just don’t do it. Don’t fret, though: We’ve got a plan. Based off setlist.fm, both bands play balanced sets. So you’re going to get a taste of old and new material in a short span of time. Hit the xx first to get a handful of I See You and then power-walk over to Haim’s set. Based on past shows, this is when Haim plays covers (think: Beyoncé, Shania Twain) and charms you out of your fanny pack. Stick with the soul sisters to the very end, because they normally close their sets with an epic drum-off. The xx: Sunday, 9:20 p.m.–10:30 p.m., Downtown Stage; Haim: Sunday, 9:25 p.m.–10:25 p.m., Ambassador Stage —Amber Sampson

Gorillaz vs. MGMT After four years of radio silence, MGMT released Little Dark Age in June, and you have the opportunity to hear the duo’s fresh material at Life Is Beautiful. Unfortunately, Gorillaz is in the same boat, with seven years of slumber until Humanz was released in April. Naturally, you’ll want to hear both bands’ new material live. But you don’t want to miss out when the crowd goes wild in the first few seconds of bangers such as “Kids.” Here’s how to play it: You can bet on MGMT getting “Electric Feel” and “Time to Pretend” out of the way in the beginning, as the band has been trying to outdo the success of those debut singles for 10 years now and want to give prime time to new songs. Stick around for one or two of their openers and then head on over to catch Gorillaz, who might play an oldie-but-goodie before they perform some of their highly anticipated (and well-received) new material. Some of Humanz’s featured artists are on the Life Is Beautiful bill, so you wouldn’t want to miss out if a Pusha T or De La Soul cameo happens. In short: Better plan on spending more of your time at Gorillaz after satisfying your electropop throwback craving. Gorillaz: Sunday, 11:20 p.m.–12:55 a.m., Downtown Stage; MGMT: Sunday, 11 p.m.–12:10 p.m., Ambassador Stage —Shannon Miller

September 21ñ27, 2017 vegasseven.com

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LIFE IS BEAUTIFUL

Rachel Platten By Camille Cannon Photography Sarah Barlow + Stephen Schofield

Speaks to Inspire Young Women

Rachel Platten had a long uphill journey to pop stardom. Before she was selling out shows and releasing triple-platinum singles, the Boston-bred singer/songwriter was performing at the bedsides of hospital patients as a volunteer for Musicians On Call, a rewarding experience that she says gave her the drive to keep moving forward in her career. Vegas Seven caught up with the 36-year-old in advance of her Life Is Beautiful Ideas Speakers talk. WHY DID YOU DECIDE TO GET INVOLVED AS A SPEAKER AT LIFE IS BEAUTIFUL? The reason that I wanted to get involved was because of my work with I Am That Girl [a nonprofit that mentors young women]. Often, as young women, we are told that we’re too emotional or that thing we go through is in some way not OK to talk about. I Am That Girl does the opposite. It gives a platform and a microphone to anyone who feels like they need to speak out about something embarrassing and vulnerable. What happens in these meetings is that girls connect with one another, and they feel like they’re not alone. You look around the room and you say, “Oh, my God, I’ve conquered that too. I’ve gone through that too.” All of a sudden it’s a whole room of people saying, “Yeah, despite what we say on social media about how perfect our lives are, there’s actually a lot that hurts.” I want to bring light to that. I love that the festival provides a platform where people can come together in another way besides music.

YOUR LATEST SINGLE, “BROKEN GLASS,” WAS INSPIRED BY THE WOMEN’S MARCH. WHAT IS ITS SIGNIFICANCE TO YOU? I was at the Women’s March, and I ran around New York City on International Women’s Day with two of my best friends, and there was this electric energy of hope and of women supporting one another. And that’s kind of rare. I have incredible girlfriends, but I know that it’s not that common for women to be encouraged to stand up for one another. We’re often encouraged, especially in media, to have conflict and compete with each other and feel like less than one another. It’s been pretty cool to see how that shifted. It’s also been a devastating year for a lot of other reasons that everyone understands; I think that I felt the need to respond. Because I’m an artist, [that song] was my human response. I was touched and moved and that was the art that came out from it. YOU’VE REACHED MASSIVE SUCCESS. DO YOU EVER STILL FEEL LIKE THE WORLD IS ASKING YOU TO PROVE YOURSELF? There’s a part of me that wishes that more people knew that I wrote “Fight Song,” that I’m a songwriter. That seemed to surprise a lot of people. My new single, “Broken Glass,” I wrote it. But it’s hard to complain when so many amazing things have already happened. If I’m ever in that state of mind, I quickly check myself and say, “Where is this coming from? Is this really coming from a place of lack and fear, and not my heart speaking?” When I’m grounded in my heart, I look around and just want to give back. People ask me why I’m so positive—and the truth is, I’m not all the time—but when I am beaming with happiness, it’s because I’ve done the work. If young women are feeling like it’s hopeless, I challenge them to look into doing charity, because that’s an amazing way to feel powerful, and also to do the work on themselves. Start writing in a journal. Find out: where are you with yourself? Forget about what the world thinks about you: how do you feel about you? It starts with self-love. 7

Rachel Platten takes the stage for the Life Is Beautiful Music & Art Festival Ideas Speakers series on September 24. Other speakers include Bill Nye (September 22) and Bethany Mota (September 23). For more from Platten’s exclusive interview with Vegas Seven, and to find out her surprising connection to hip-hop, visit vegasseven.com/rachelplatten. 28

September 21ñ27, 2017 vegasseven.com


A Tasty Feastival

LIFE IS BEAUTIFUL

Liam’s Lemonade and Roasted Corn

Liam’s Lemonade and Roasted Corn will be serving up a colorful take on the popular Mexican street eat elotes, made with butter, mayo and Parmesan. Liam’s dyes the cheese, turning the cob into a beautiful, buttery rainbow called the Uni-Corn. liamslemonaid.com

Get your fill between sets with these delicious bites

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LIFE IS BEAUTIFUL

Makers & Finders

Long nights of partying means coffee on-site is a must. Local coffee shop Makers & Finders will be pulling shots of espresso and pouring hot and cold brews all weekend long. makerslv.com

Mad Dumplings

After hours of standing on your feet, it’s only a matter of time before you start craving carbs and fat. This longanisa sausage dumpling topped with pork belly and fresh jalapeño from Mad Dumplings should do the trick. maddumplings.com

Fukuburger

Fukuburger’s Japaneseinspired American burgers hit all the right notes: soft buns, juicy patties and savory condiments. The Tomago burger is made with a runny fried egg, furikake seasoning, crispy onion strings and teriyaki and wasabi mayo. Just make sure to ask for napkins. fukuburger.com

The Hungry Royal

Arts District restaurant Cornish Pasty Co. has made the Scotch egg an appetizer favorite for locals. Both Cornish Pasty Co. and California food truck The Hungry Royal will be on the ground serving the delicious pork-egg geode to festival attendees in need of a snack. cornishpasty.com, thehungryroyal.com

Coolhaus STK

For those who are a lil’ hungry, the Lil’ BRGS from STK are just right. The wagyu steak means the sliders are better than your ordinary mini-burger. With the special sauce and sesame seed bun, they’re almost too fancy to eat with your hands. togrp.com/ venue/stk-las-vegas

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If one of your friends starts acting dramatic this weekend, tell them to ducking chill and get a Coolhaus sammie or pint. The soft and velvety ice cream, in flavors like Sundae Funday and Campfire S’mores, is the perfect treat for an attitude adjustment. cool.haus


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LIFE IS BEAUTIFUL

Life of a Cocktail Six ways to refresh wh i le festiva li ng By Xania V. Woodman Photography Krystal Ramirez

A

ny chef or bartender will tell you that, among other essentials, a sharp knife is critical to a successful service. Breakthru Beverage has overseen the Life Is Beautiful beverage program since the beginning of the three-day event that turns Downtown Las Vegas into a celebration of music, food, drink and culture. Now, as Year 5 is upon us, the team has honed and polished that beverage plan like the finest steel. On board as premium sponsors this year are Dos Equis, Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey (returning for its fifth year) and Tito’s Handmade Vodka. Also back in a big way for its fifth year is Fernet-Branca Italian amaro, and additional featured brands include St. George Vodka, Fortaleza Tequila, Rhum Clément, Smoke Wagon Bourbon, Appleton Estate Rum and Kimo Sabe Mezcal. It is from these brands and others that Breakthru Beverage development specialists Andrew Pollard and Rodger Gillespie have created a streamlined portfolio of 20 cocktails. Here are six of the drinks that will refresh palate and spirit at Life Is Beautiful this weekend.

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Señorita “On the page, it’s a watermelon basil margarita,” Pollard says, “bittersweet, savory and still refreshing.” The intrigue comes right up front with the Bruto Americano—you don’t have to wait for the finish. “I think there’s just enough of a twist in each of these to keep it interesting, but not enough to scare anybody.” In the Glass: Fortaleza Blanco Tequila, Chareau Cucumber Liqueur, fresh watermelon, lime, basil and St. George Bruto Americano bitter Find It: At both craft cocktail pods

Tito’s Iced Tea Despite the similar name, this is more Arnold Palmer than Long Island Iced Tea. “Festival champions need to accommodate everybody,” Pollard says. And this one hits it on all levels: It’s easy drinking, light and refreshing, balanced and way better than the one you might make at home. “That said, there are still 2.5 ounces of alcohol in there. …” In the Glass: Tito’s Handmade Vodka, Giffard Pink Grapefruit Liqueur, fresh lemon and honey mango tea Find It: Festival Champion, available at all VIP bars and the Tito’s activation

Clockwork Orange Julius Highlighting the tangerine Red Bull expression (the orange can), “it’s fun and cheeky,” Pollard says. “People identify with Orange Julius; we want to have something for everyone.” For me, however, this frozen refresher is all about memories of racing to catch the ice cream truck. In the Glass: Red Bull Orange Edition, Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey, Giffard Vanilla Liqueur and Tippy Cow Orange Cream rum-based cream liqueur Find It: At the Red Bull activations

September 21ñ27, 2017 vegasseven.com

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LIFE IS BEAUTIFUL

Hot & Bothered Vegetal cocktail lovers and foodies, take note! A uniquely savory moment in the lineup, this Paloma-ish cooler is how Pollard gets to really stretch his legs: “This is where I start having fun with complexity and all the things we love.” In the Glass: St. George Green Chile Vodka, Kimo Sabe Joven Mezcal, passion fruit, fresh lime and grapefruit soda Find It: At both craft cocktail pods

Cast Away You know when the bartender serves that flaming or smoking something and suddenly there are 10 orders for it? This is that appealing novelty. In past years, that work was done by whole fresh young coconuts served with or without rum. This year, it will be a blue coconut daiquiri with a touch of sophistication (thank you, sherry!), where you can really taste the fresh coconut meat. “This definitely has a little more going on than your typical blue drink,” says Pollard. In the Glass: Rhum Clément Premiere Canne, Clément Mahina Coconut, fresh lime, Lustau Manzanilla Sherry, Giffard Orgeat and blue Curaçao Find It: At both craft cocktail pods

Peach Dandy Looking for your whiskey drink in the lineup? You probably know that Manhattans don’t mix well with heat and sunshine. With rye to mix up this returning recipe, you’re far better off with this frozen peach-garnished delight. Giving all the flavors of a bite of peach pie right down to the pastry crust, “this is that Southern belle, if you will,” Pollard says. In the Glass: Jack Daniel’s Single Barrel Rye Whiskey, Giffard Peach Liqueur, fresh lemonade and mint Find It: Festival Champion, available at all VIP bars and available frozen at the Jack Daniel’s activation For more cocktails, visit vegasseven.com/libcocktails2017

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Profile for Vegas Seven

Your Guide to Life Is Beautiful 2017  

Here is Vegas Seven's guide to tasting, seeing and hearing all the festival has to offer, from the first afternoon set to the final headline...

Your Guide to Life Is Beautiful 2017  

Here is Vegas Seven's guide to tasting, seeing and hearing all the festival has to offer, from the first afternoon set to the final headline...

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