These five acts broke tremendous ground in CU and beyond in 2008 and into 2009. Check out what they have to say about where they have been, where they are going and musical highlights.

Common Loon

In 2008: “For us, 2008 wasn’t terribly eventful, mainly because we spent most of it trying to finish a full-length record that took far too long to make. There were, however, a few notable occurrences: the 7-inch vinyl release of two songs from said record by our friends at Ideal Utopia; an appearance at Schubas (in support of Headlights and The Submarines), during which we were very well received by people who had never heard of us and the opportunity to play at Shipwreck’s last show, which was at once thrilling and saddening.” — Matthew Campbell
In 2009: “We finished the album a few weeks ago, and we went to Texas to play at SXSW shortly thereafter. If 2009 progresses the way we wish it to, we’ll find someone willing to release the record, and we’ll find ourselves playing more shows in more bizarre places.” — Matthew Campbell

Mordechai in the Mirror

In 2008: “2008 was the year that we really came together as a band. Mordechai started out playing shows as a duo — just me, David Samuel, on keys/guitar/loops/beats/vocals and Aaron Emerson Wittrig on cello/loops. We met up with Jonah, who now incorporates his amazing spoken word and rap to our mix. We also incorporated Aaron’s sister, Rachel Wittrig, on violin and vocals. Some of our highlights have been putting on our own Caffe Paradiso shows. We strived to make it more than a music show but rather a multimedia experience, bringing in paintings, projected images, a copy of our album and our music all for free. The turnouts were fantastic, and it was a great way to spread our music around and meet people in a comfortable setting.” — David Samuel
In 2009: “This year, we have some great things happening. One project we are working towards is a dance/music collaboration at the IMC. The goal is to explore the overlap between Mordechai’s brand of electronic hip-hop and the unique styles of the dancers here at the University. Another project we will be working on is a new album. Since our first free CD, we’ve written and worked on so many new songs that we all feel it’s time to get that recorded and out into people’s hands.” — David Samuel

Post Historic

In 2008: “2008 was very significant for us as artists and people because we released our debut EP (Memory Banks of Blue) and toured the Midwest. It was very, very exciting and a great learning experience on how the music business works. Playing consistently also improved our chemistry greatly, so we’re no longer that Urbana garage band we used to be. I swear. We’ve also started growing a larger fan base here and are being more recognized as a local band, so that’s always cool. Being selected as a spotlighted artist for Illini Media ain’t so bad either!” — Yoo Soo
In 2009: “For 2009, we plan on recording a full-length album, hopefully by the end of summer. We are currently sitting on 30-some songs to work with, some in more consideration than others, and are still writing. So we’ll see what happens with those. We also plan on touring the Midwest again. Gas is not as expensive as last year, so we won’t be sharing blankets and taking showers together anymore. We’re very thankful for that.” — Yoo Soo

Sunset Stallion

In 2008: “2008 encompasses both our inception as a band, and our evolution. We formed in March, and had our first show on Easter. Since then, we’ve recorded an EP, and added to our line up. Our highlights probably include playing shows in Chicago, and performing at the Pygmalion Festival this fall.” – Martin O’Donnell
In 2009: “We’ve been playing many exciting gigs this year, such as a show with Gentlemen Auction House on April 10, and we are planning on recording an full length album next month, as well as continuing to play shows in the area, and Chicago. Our goal is to appear on the Ellen show by the end of the year. She’s the best.” – Martin O’Donnell

World’s First Flying Machine

In 2008: “2008 was a great year. We’ve built up a fan base (as indicated by our 100+ Facebook fans. FTW!) and made some good friends in the local music community. We opened for some great acts like Black Mountain, Titus Andronicus, David Dondero, and Headlights. We played a set in an elevator at Allen Hall, and played an 8 minute long noise composition in an Urban Outfitters. We also had the opportunity to perform at WEFT in downtown Champaign. Most importantly, we recorded our debut album, The House You’re Living In. We worked with Matt Talbott (from Hum!) at his studio, Great Western Record Recorders, in Tolono, which was really amazing.” – World’s First Flying Machine
In 2009: “We have two main goals in 2009—touring and releasing our record. We’re looking to hit the road this summer and really make an honest go at this ;music thing.’ The biggest problem is transporting all of us (we’re currently making the transition from a sextet to a seven-tet (sic)), but we’re looking at some pretty nice, used dirigibles. Oh, and expect more mustaches. Lots more.” – World’s First Flying Machine

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