It’s that time of year again — as April 13 approaches, throngs of people will be everywhere, both on campus and off. The pressure is on to recruit the next generation of Golden Bears to come to UC Berkeley, Sproul Plaza will be busier than at noon on a weekday, and we’ll be helping people find the very best of this beautiful campus in 24 short hours. Needless to say, Cal Day, while super fun, can be extremely overwhelming. Luckily, ASUC SUPERB Productions has us covered yet again with a concert to help us come together and unwind in true Golden Bear fashion.
On Saturday, you will want to be outside Doe Library on Memorial Glade at 4 p.m. for a show featuring Los Angeles-based group the Marías and solo artist Mereba. This concert, which has brought together crowds of current and prospective students in past years, will be two hours of completely engulfing music.
This year’s headliner is the Marías, a group whose music is a vibrant combination of jazz and electronic sound. The group is renowned for its psychedelic soul that is a gloriously smooth and often eerie mix of computer-generated beats and pure musical talent. The group has released a total of two albums, both volumes of one overarching project titled Superclean.
The band’s song with the most views on YouTube has more than 2 million views and is called “I Don’t Know You.” The track is one of the group’s more upbeat, lively pieces, but it still has a signature eccentricity that makes the band’s music so special. María, the lead singer, has a voice that is haunting — simultaneously soft yet forceful. The music is just slow enough that it is perfect for lying on the grass and chilling with friends but is also upbeat enough to have a dance party and jam your stress away.
Regardless of whether you come away from Cal Day exhausted and ready to chill out with current and future Golden Bears or pumped up by celebrating our campus all day, the group will match your mood and deliver you exactly the sweet sounds you need.
The Marías will be preceded Saturday by opener Mereba, self-described as an artist/singer/rapper/songwriter/producer/musician/guitarist/actor/rolling stoner. She brings eclecticism and emotion to tracks that ooze soul.
Mereba has been making music for eight years and in that time has evolved greatly in her style and lyricism. She has perfected the soulful jazz style that the Marías also exude while adding her own uniquely personal touch to the genre that will completely engulf all listeners in a dreamlike trance.
Mereba’s newest release, titled The Jungle Is the Only Way Out, celebrates her wild side and incorporates nature into her signature sound. “Kinfolk,” one of the first songs listed on the album, which was released earlier this year, incorporates the chirping of birds into the introduction, giving the entire song a surround-sound feel.
Mereba also manages to incorporate hip-hop rhythms and lyrics into more classical melodies, including a mix of electronic sounds with real drums and basses, mashing different styles together in an unconventional way.
Overall, Mereba and the Marías give students a unique opportunity to embrace different sounds, enjoy themselves, and celebrate what it means to be a Golden Bear. So, Bears, bring out your blankets and snacks to share with friends, both new and old, and get ready to immerse yourself in a psychedelic and funky concert on our very own campus.