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Hub City Sounds: Rock New Brunswick Festival Recap
by Elizabeth Bui

On Saturday, September 21st, 90.3 The Core participated as a vendor in the Hub City Sounds: Rock New Brunswick festival. The free, family-centered festival took place on The Yard on College Avenue and featured clothes/music vendors and performances by local bands and DJs. Members of the station tabled the event, alongside other vendors including Spina Records and By the By Vintage. Visitors perused stands and local eateries, with many reclining on lawn chairs and blankets to enjoy the live music. 

This year’s Rock New Brunswick festival was the third since the festival’s conception in 2017, bringing together electronic-based artists and local bands for this year’s DJ’s v.s. bands showdown. DJ performances sampled and remixed a range of music, from more recent pop and hip-hop hits to older, throwback classics. DJ Flygerian, based in Vineland, NJ, reimagined rap singles from the summer with infectious, danceable afrobeat. Other DJ’s kept the crowd moving with tracks by SZA and Young Thug. 

Rugburn was the first band to perform, blending rock with funk and jazz as they performed tracks from their latest album, “Mellow D”. The Genii Collective appeared later, merging the two opposing sounds of the festival with R&B beats inspired by old school hip hop flows. Their lively performance featured songs “Smooth Brother” and “Stand by Me”, highlighted with plenty of groovy keyboard lines to accompany syncopated drums. Other local favorites included Marsoupial, a Madison, NJ based progressive jam rock band, transcending genres with funky basslines and spacey melodic guitar riffs. “Mongoose” was perfect for a sunny afternoon, filling The Yard with their energetic instrumentals. Shred Flintstone later rocked The Yard with their fuzzed-out indie rock, sending shockwaves through New Brunswick with their heavily distorted closing track “Scalps”. 

The festival was a wonderful way to spend a sunny afternoon outdoors, appreciating the showcase of local artists from the New Brunswick scene, and was one of many free festivals Hub City Sounds organizes throughout the year.