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Major indie group, Freelance Whales, coming from NYC to perform in Lehman Auditorium


Excitement is growing on campus for the Feb. 7 concert in by Freelance Whales, a well-known indie rock band from New York City.

Freelance Whales – Friday, Feb. 7,  9 p.m. – $5 students; $15/$20 non-students advance/door.

“Their sound is awesome,” says Emma King, a junior who’s been a fan for several years and saw the band perform last fall in Washington, D.C. “They’ve got a great stage presence and they’re just a really great band.”

Freelance Whales makes extensive use of unusual instruments like the harmonium and glockenspiel to create a sound that has drawn comparisons to huge acts like Arcade Fire and Sufjan Stevens. Spin magazine named the group to its list of “50 Must-Hear Bands” before the 2010 SXSW festival, while in a review of the band’s 2012 album Diluvia, the A.V. Club called Freelance Whales “one of indie rock’s most intriguing new acts.”

The Campus Activities Council and Student Government Association worked together to bring the band to EMU, in response to student surveys that have constantly reflected a desire for larger acts to perform on campus. The two groups have decided to pool resources every three years to attract a big-name musician or band.

“It’s really special to have a major artist come to EMU,” says Phil Tieszen, the assistant director of student programs who arranged the show. “Come to hear great music and come for a more exciting experience in a more intimate setting than you’ll usually get.”

The band will perform in Lehman Auditorium.

SGA co-president Christine Baer became a fan of the band as she and the rest of SGA listened to Freelance Whales as they were discussing which group to bring to EMU. She adds that the band has a group of avid followers on campus as well as a growing number of people who have begun to listen to them more recently.

“We’d love to get a good student turnout,” says Baer, who hopes to recapture the excitement that was present on campus when Joshua Radin performed.

Tickets for EMU and JMU students are available for $5; non-student tickets cost $15 in advance or $20 at the door. Advance purchase from the EMU Box Office is recommended.

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