Burlington's music scene got some national love today when online tastemaker Stereogum included the 802 in its "Area Codes" feature, an ongoing series profiling various lesser known music scenes around the country. The piece has some nice quotes about the Queen City from local music mavens Alex Crothers of Higher Ground and Nick Mavodones from Angioplasty Media. (Mavodones also works at HG, BTW.)
Although the 802 area code encompasses the entirety of the state, the Stereogum piece is particularly Burlington-centric. Aside from passing mentions of Brattleboro and Bennington, music made outside of the state's biggest little city is pretty much ignored. That's somewhat understandable, especially considering it's a short piece coming from a writer with an outside perspective. Some small acknowledgement of the great tunes coming down from the mountains woulda been nice. But that's a minor quibble.
The piece does a admirable job of dispelling the myth that Burlington is still a jam band haven. (It ain't. And if you think it is, you should try getting out more often since 2001.) Mavodones in particular notes the city's burgeoning indie, experimental and hip-hop scenes. And the inclusion of some videos from the likes of indie space rockers Parmaga, Death's punk progeny Rough Francis and indie folk sweetheart Maryse Smith, as well as links to download tunes from Villanelles, the Vacant Lots and Lawrence Welks and Our Bear to Cross, among others, is some cool exposure. But to really capture BTV music — an admittedly tall order in a scant 500 words — it might have been wise for Stereogum to cast its gaze a little wider than the Angio/NNA Tapes crew and their associated acts. Not that those bands and labels don't deserve the love — they certainly do. But the piece feels a little clique-y and narrow in focus. Still, it's always nice to see the spotlight shone on our humble little corner of the world.