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Urban Outfitters Seeks Attention, Offends Again

Urban Outfitters has outdone themselves, yet again. The clothing company has proven to dramatically and improperly cross the fine line between edgy and tasteless.

The company is once again under fire for its offensive clothing choices, this time for releasing a bloodstained Kent State hoodie, labelled as “vintage” by the company.

For those unaware of Kent State’s history, in 1970, four students were killed and nine others injured when the Ohio State National Guard opened fire on a large Vietnam War protest. The incident sparked national outrage and closed hundreds of universities and colleges as more than four million students went on strike.

This tasteless article of clothing would have set back the twisted buyer $129, a ridiculous sum for any hoodie, never mind something so vile.

The company issued the same sort of response it always does when it offends others. It claims that it didn’t realize that it crossed a line.

“It was never our intention to allude to the tragic events that took place at Kent State in 1970, and we are extremely saddened that this item was perceived as such. The one-of-a-kind item was purchased as part of our sun-faded vintage collection. There is no blood on this shirt nor has this item been altered in any way. The red stains are discoloration from the original shade of the shirt and the holes are from natural wear and fray,” said the company in a statement.

Perhaps it would be believable if the company didn’t have such a history with creating clothing that causes controversy.

Urban Outfitters was under fire just recently for a shirt emblazoned from top to bottom with the word “Depression.” Before that, there was shirt proudly proclaiming “Eat less.”

This is why it’s hard to believes Urban Outfitters when it says that it had no intention of offending anyone with the bloody hoodie. Other vintage college hoodies are sold by the company, none featuring the bloodstains that were featured on the Kent State hoodie.

Clearly, Urban Outfitters has decided that offending people is a viable business model. Still, the company’s extreme clothing decisions doesn’t deter shoppers.

In fact, the company gets free publicity every time it makes the country angry. The half-hearted apology the company gave will be more than enough for some of the young consumers who frequent the store.

Urban Outfitters makes itself seem edgy, appealing to its consumer base which is more than used to being bombarded with advertisements from every side. It cuts through that cloud by evoking an emotion from the public. Instead of wasting money on heavy advertising, the company gets free publicity at the expense of the sensitive public.

There is one way to stop whoever has decided that this method is a decent way to run a company: treat it like an annoying advertisement, don’t buy the product. Stop shopping at Urban Outfitters. This is a company that is overpriced, prospering from any manner of attention. It’s time to treat Urban Outfitters like a whiney child and ignore it. Your wallet will thank you.

Concert Review: A Day To Remember

By Acadia Otlowski 

A Day To Remember slayed the crowd during its 19-song set at the Oakdale Theatre. The energy of the crowd and the energy of the band combined to create an atmosphere that was both brutal and incredibly entertaining, no matter where in the venue a spectator was.

The group I came with arrived to the show late, so we missed the first opener: Motionless in White. We came in midway through Chiodos, who put on a fairly good show.

Then Bring Me The Horizon took the stage, combining mandalas and heavy metal in an interesting manner. This is not a band I’m familiar with, but they also put on a fairly decent show.

A Day To Remember has a flair for the dramatic, something that becomes readily apparent through shows. The set began with a camping scene set in front of a variant of Mount Rushmore. But instead of the faces of United States presidents, the faces of the band’s were carved into the stone.

The band opened its set with “The Downfall of Us All,” a hard-hitting number that founded the tone for the set. A mosh pit formed and very rarely ceased while the band performed.

This was followed by “2nd Sucks,” a song that opens low and slow with a menacing guitar riff. This is followed by the command “Fight,” and the song continues to be very heavy. The crowd loved it. The song also features an air-raid siren to further the menacing tone of the song.

The band continued through its set, playing a variety of its heaviest hits off all of its albums, including: “I’m Made of Wax Larry, What Are You Made of?” “Monument” and “Violence.”

The set was broken up by a short version of the song “Macarena.”

This was followed by the song “Homesick,” which starts off fairly fast-paced to then slow down dramatically. There is more clean singing in this set than in the others the band had played.

That was immediately followed by the heavy, “You be Tails, I’ll Be Sonic.” During this song, the band played video game sounds layered with music, adding an interesting affect.

The band continued its set with a mix of songs that were both heavy and soft, appealing to a variety of fans. The band put on an excellent show, complete with the twisting of the imagery of Mount Rushmore. By the end, this display looked as if it were part of a zombie movie with lasers shining out of the eyes of the band members.

At one point during the set, lead singer Jeremy McKinnon ran out over the crowd in a giant hamster ball.

A Day To Remember played “All I Want” as its last song in its original set. This song is mid-level, high-energy and features a lot of clean singing. It was a fairly good way to end the set. The band then exited the stage, leaving fans cheering for an encore. They delivered.

Appealing to the softer side among their fans, the band played “If It Means A Lot to You.” This song is by far the most mellow song the band played. Those with lighters and cell phones lifted them up for the song, swaying to it. This was one of two times during the night that the mosh pit was closed. The song is a break-up song, technically, but it succeeds in wooing the crowd almost every time the band plays it.

The band then plays “All Signs Point to Lauderdale,”  followed by “The Plot to Bomb the Panhandle;” both high-energy songs to close the set.

A Day To Remember is a can’t-miss show. They always bring spectacular energy, which keeps the show incredibly entertaining throughout the entirety. There’s a reason most fans will not miss a show whenever the band is in town.

Fall CAN Concert: Bryce Vine

By Inasia Woods

The Trendsetter Tour made a stop at Central on Thursday night for a free Bryce Vine concert. The show was a special edition of Devil’s Den brought to students by Central Activities Network.

Touring is Vine’s favorite part of being a musician,according to the artist.

“Getting to do the tour: seeing places I would never get to see and meeting people I probably would have never met,” said Vine.

Bryce Vine fell in love with music when he convinced his mother to buy him a guitar at the age of 13.

“I didn’t realize I wanted to do music until I was 13, I didn’t know I was good at it until maybe like a couple years later,” said Vine, who thinks the guitar sets him apart. “Well it makes me a musician instead of just a rapper. People recognize that they’re not used to seeing a rapper who can play an instrument, especially seeing a DJ who can play a trumpet. We’re musicians, and then we just found this and its our own way of doing it.”

Students got taught a thing or two by rap-artist Professor Lyrical who opened the show with his sidekick, a DJ and Rapper named Scott. The crowd took up a little less than half of the theatre. Of course, when the performer is a new artist there aren’t immediately arms waving side to side, or girls screaming at the top of their lungs. The Crowd began to warm up a little when Professor Lyrical asked the crowd to talk back to him with his phrases “When I say Hip Hop, you say music.” One thing is for sure, these two got the crowd going by throwing t-shirts and giving out mixtapes and albums. With Professor Lyrical spitting his educational and intellectual rap lyrics, it drew the crowd into yearning to hear more. I have to admit, his lyrics gave me chills.  He left the crowd with chilling words and a final statement before walking off the stage.

Bryce Vine’s DJ came out and the crowd had already began to scream for Bryce as the DJ began to set up. When Vine came out the crowd immediately started screaming, so it was quite obvious that he had a good following. After his first song he started introducing himself to the crowd. During his second song “Guilty Pleasure,” it seemed as though the crowd knew more of the song. He introduced a new single that he performed for the crowd; although no one knew it, people were still bobbing their heads along. He then played his single “My Holiday” from his new EP Lazy Fair, which was definitely a crowd pleaser as everyone began to sway their arms in the air, left and right, along with the artist and the DJ.

Many bands have influenced Vine’s music.

“Kid Cudi, Steven Jenkins, Third Eye Blind, Rolling Stones, Beetles and like half of the songs Tupac Wrote. Blink 182. We like to perform carefree. I just try to combine everything that I listen to and I just try to figure out what it is about it: is it the writing, is it the lyrics? It’s so intricate and different. I think my favorite writer is Third Eye Blind, which is random to someone like a rapper but he is so specific with things that he talks about in his songs that it’s really easy to hold on to his songs, and I understand,” said Vine.

The remainder of the concert maintained the same energy. During the last song, fans ran to the stage and danced as the DJ played the trumpet. The show came to an end as Vine danced and sang to the DJ’s trumpet, at the same time giving attention to the group of fans in front of the stage.

CCSU Takes First Steps to Becoming a Smoke-Free Campus

By Jacqueline Stoughton

Students return to a campus that now caters to non-smokers through the creation of new smoking stations around campus. The university hopes smokers on campus will voluntarily use them to smoke.

Smoking centers are located sporadically among the grounds: Diloreto-Willard Hall parking lot, near Copernicus Garage, between Welte Hall and the Student Center and Kaiser Lot are the areas that students and faculty must be when smoking.

Each smoking center is designed to protect students from the elements and is clearly marked so smokers know where to find them.

“I’m unsure about how successful this will be because it’s not like every student is constantly smoking so I don’t think it’s going to make any difference,” said Kristee Bisson, a student at CCSU. “I don’t think there’s going to be any more or less smokers on campus than we had before.”

“In keeping with the University’s goal to provide a safe and healthy work environment, and in conformance with Connecticut’s General Statute 31-40q(d), smoking is prohibited everywhere on the campus other than in four designated areas,” states CCSU’s official smoking policy. “This policy applies to students, employees, contractors, and campus visitors.”

Despite the impression this statement is giving most students, Dr. Christopher Diamond, Director of Health Services insists that smoking on campus isn’t necessarily “prohibited,” but rather is intended to be a voluntary action.

“The president made it clear that it’s not going to be enforced it’s requested to be voluntary,” said Diamond. “I’m not a fan of prohibition so I don’t think that if your goal is to get people on campus who are smokers to be non-smokers. Prohibiting smoking on campus will not achieve that end.”

In President Jack Miller’s address, prior to the start of the semester, he explains how this approach seemed to best reflect the sentiment of those responding to the surveys that were conducted on those attending CCSU last year.

“I hope this is not a ‘rule’ which requires ‘enforcement,’ but rather is one with which we all voluntarily comply,” said Miller in his statement. “It may take a short time of transition for people to remember our new policy. If you see anyone violating our policy, remind them in a courteous way that there are only limited places where smoking is allowed.”

Eliminating the amount of second hand smoke is a major goal of the new smoking policy. Diamond explains how we don’t often think about how second hand smoke can affect others, such as triggering heart and asthma attacks to those who are especially vulnerable.

“When you are around a person who is smoking, you inhale the same dangerous chemicals as he or she does. Breathing second hand smoke can make you sick. Some of the diseases that secondhand smoke causes can kill you,” states the Surgeon General’s warning on second hand smoke. “There is no safe amount of secondhand smoke. Children, pregnant women, older people, and people with heart or breathing problems should be especially careful. Even being around secondhand smoke for a short time can hurt your health. Some effects are temporary. But others are permanent.”

“Secondhand smoke is actually worse for you than cigarettes it definitely could trigger some sort of health issue in someone,” said Bisson. “So in that sense, yes I think this new policy is a good idea.”

Diamond explains that he hopes the students will look at this in a positive light, which could lead to opportunities organized by the university to help guide students to a smoke-free life. Although as of now, there are no such official plans.

“There needs to be more education about the effects of secondhand smoke,” said Diamond, who believes that if CVS, one of the biggest pharmacy chains in the U.S., has stopped selling tobacco in their stores by October 1st, anyone can do the same.

“I think it would be so cool if we had a smoke-free campus through voluntary wellness activities and health improvements and with consideration and understanding of others,” said Diamond. “If we looked at others rights instead of our own first, and the wellness of others before our own, it’d be a pretty amazing thing.”

“Recess”: Skrillex Releases First Full Length Album

by Sean Begin

Sonny Moore, better known by his alias Skrillex, grabbed the attention of American pop culture in 2010 when he released his YouTube-sampled “Scary Monsters and Nice Sprites” EP. With songs more reminiscent of angrily arguing Transformers than traditional instrumental music, Moore succeeded in helping take dance music mainstream.

Now, after six years of singles, remixes and extended plays, Moore has released his first full-length effort with “Recess,” an 11 song LP that nods to both the style that made him popular and the influences his music has seen since his ascension.

The opening track, “All is Fair in Love and Brostep,” is a tongue-in-cheek acknowledgment from Moore to the subgenre of dubstep attached to his style that has nearly become cliché since. The song features the Ragga Twins, pioneers in the United Kingdom’s early 1990s jungle and drum and bass scene.

The Ragga Twins are also featured on “Ragga Bomb,” the reggae-influenced drum and bass track that feels pulled out of the 90s and touched up with Moore’s unique style. Moore delves into the genre further with the jazzed up just-in-time-for-summer tune “Coast is Clear,” featuring up-and-coming hip hop act Chance The Rapper, whose bubbly crooning seems fit for driving with the windows down.

What seems to make “Recess” shine is the way Moore blends his unique style of growling robots and gigantic bass drops, while adding elements and entire songs showcasing his branching abilities as a producer.

Songs like “Fire Away” and “Stranger” are reminiscent of Moore’s work on 2013’s “Leaving” EP that was released only to members of The Nest, the subscription service for Moore’s Owsla label.

Moore has always been about weird sounds, though, and they shine through in “Doompy Poomp,” which sounds like the theme song to an Oompa Loompa-run carnival on acid. And “Dirty Vibe,” which serves as a first taste of Moore’s work with Diplo as the group Jack-U (who debuted in Miami at Ultra this year) is a blend of styles: techno and hardstyle with a dash of K-pop in the form of featured artists G-Dragon and CL.

The tracks that fit the mold that made Moore such a huge star, however, have been scaled back from the usual exploding bass drops favored in his early work for more subtle, but still intensely powerful, sonic shifts.

Moore works with Owsla signee, Alvin Risk, to make “Try It Out,” which is actually a mix of a bootleg tune titled “Imma Try It Out” that surfaced as early as 2011 and was featured in the 2012 video game Call of Duty: Black Ops II. “Try It Out” features the ragged growls and laser sounds so familiar to Moore’s work.

Working with another Owsla artist, Kill the Noise, the title track to the album fits perfectly with the backing sounds of kids screaming and playing, and comes packed with a bass drop that sucks all sound in favor of hyped up chords. “Ease My Mind” may be the album’s fiercest song, building slowly with sampled female vocals and breaking smoothly into an upbeat laser-filled drop.

A full length release from Moore has been a long time coming, especially after mainstream success and his winning multiple Grammy awards in the past two years. “Recess” is a spectacular blend of both Moore’s pioneering style and the influences that have shaped him as an artist thus far.

Lacrosse Splits First Two of Four Straight Home Games

by Sean Begin

Winning in sports by one is a unique situation. For the losing team, it can be particularly devastating to come up just short of a win. For the winning team, elation at pulling out the win can be a boost of confidence.

In the first two of four straight home conference games, the Central Connecticut women’s lacrosse team experienced both sides of the one-goal game.

The team held off St. Francis (Pa.) to win 11-10 on Friday before falling to Robert Morris 9-8 in sudden victory double overtime Sunday afternoon.

“I think what we found in [the St. Francis] game was we played an excellent first half,” said head coach Laura Campbell. “And then we kind of put our foot on the brakes a little bit, so to speak, in the second half.”

“So our big goal going into this game was to put a complete game together and to keep responding and keep being resilient. And so I’m really proud of them that they rose to that today.”

And respond they did. The Blue Devils faced a fierce Colonial attack in the first half and were outshot 15-to-6, but thanks to a couple wide shots and stellar goalkeeping from junior Morgan Tullar, they entered the half with a 4-3 lead.

The Colonials (9-4, 3-1 NEC) scored first 6:33 into the first half on a free position shot, but Central (5-8, 2-2 NEC) responded at the 21 minute mark with a free position goal from senior Claire Healy to tie the game.

Robert Morris took the lead back with 11:17 to play. Four minutes later, Healy’s fellow captain, Amanda Toke scored the first of her three goals, assisted by sophomore Falynn McCartney. The Colonials once more took the lead with 1:23 to go, but the McCartney-Toke combo struck again 32 seconds later to tie the score.

Then with one second on the clock, McCartney fed Healy for the go-ahead goal and her third assist of the game. Tullar had 10 saves in the half.

“She rose to the occasion and she stepped up for us big,” said Campbell of Tullar’s day. “I hope she takes it and feels good about it, and she should.”

Campbell added: “I also think our defense as a unit, they really did a very good job. [Robert Morris] controlled a lot of the possessions with draws, and it was down our end a lot and defense did a really good job forcing some low percentage shots. So it was a team effort on that.”

Robert Morris opened the second half with three straight goals until McCartney scored unassisted to make the score 6-5, before the Colonials answered with two more goals to pull away 8-5.

“It was starting to go down a road where we’re getting frustrated and that’s been something that we’ve been working on this whole year,” said Campbell. “So I just told them we can’t go down that road. We’ve got to know that we have each other’s backs.”

Like they had been doing all match, Central responded, scoring the final three goals of the half to force overtime. Toke scored her third goal of the game with 11:42 remaining to make it 8-6.

Central didn’t score again unitl a free position goal from McCartney with just 2:15 remaining. McCartney assisted on senior Meaghan McCurry’s goal just 49 seconds later to send the game to overtime.

After a scoreless first overtime period, the teams entered sudden victory double overtime that saw the Colonials pull out the win with 1:38 to go in the first half of the double OT period.

“It came back to clears,” said Campbell when asked where she thought the team struggled on Sunday, “which is funny because against St. Francis we did really well with the clear.

“Our goal was to play a full 60 minutes so it’s kind of ironic that we went into overtime.”

McCartney continued her standout sophomore season on Sunday, tallying two goals, four assists and a team-high four draw controls, which Campbell called Robert Morris one of the best in the nation at. McCartney managed to draw control the ball that led to the Blue Devils’ tying goal.

“I think with that, Falynn was just changing things up a little bit on her just trying to keep her out of any sort of rhythm,” Campbell said of the play.

Captains Toke and Healy finished with three and two goals, respectively, while Tullar finished with 14 total saves.

In Friday’s game against St. Francis (Pa.), Central outscored the Red Flag 9-3 in the first half, putting up seven unanswered goals to take an 8-1 lead early. But St. Francis scored the final six goals of the second half to climb within one before the Blue Devils could close the game out.

McCartney scored four goals on Friday giving her six for the weekend. Toke finished with six as well scoring three against the Red Flash. Freshman Marissa Soto had a good game as well, scoring two goals and adding six draw controls and three ground balls, both team highs.

The Blue Devils will next host conference leader Bryant on Friday, April 18 before facing Sacred Heart a week later, in their last home game of the season.