The best voices in modern music are not those that are technically proficient but those that are dented and torn, so full of character that they could tell a whole story just by humming a few notes. Tom Waits, Billie Holiday, Ray Charles, Leonard Cohen… as their careers continued their lives seeped into their voices, expanding, contracting, cracking, causing deep crevices. Adam Turla of Murder by Death is well on his way to becoming a member of this camp. In the early days of MbD, Turla’s voice was like a flower bud, green and simple. Now, a decade on, his voice has a timbre closer to another one of those vocal icons, Johnny Cash. And like those other singular singers, Turla is not relying merely on his battered vocal chords to carry him forward. He integrates it with A) a great band, and B) great stories. While this is clearly a band with a sense of humor – not only are they named after the 1976 murder spoof starring Peter Falk, Peter Sellers, Maggie Smith, and more, but titles in their catalogue include “Spring Break 1899″, “Intergalactic Menopause”, and “Killbot 2000″ – their strongest suit is balancing … Continue reading
It’s not often the surprising and enchanting Dad Horse gets to tour the United States, but he’s on our soil right now, preaching the kellergospel. Here’s a clip from his recent stop at the Muddy Roots Festival. “Through the Hole” – The Dad Horse Experience He will appearing tonight at Now That’s Class tonight, and it promises to be an interesting experience. There’s no telling how long it will be before he makes it back this way, so don’t miss it. “Kingdom It Will Come” – The Dad Horse Experience Thursday, September 6, 9 PM The Dad Horse Experience The Misery Jackals Johnny and the Applestompers $5 Now That’s Class If you’re too far away to catch this gig, Dad has a bunch more American stops coming up with more being added all the time. Keep tabs at the tour page. Sep.07: THE BRASS RAIL, Fort Wayne, IN Sep.08: TIP TOP DELUXE, Grand Rapids, MI Sep.09: WANDER INN, Mishawaka, IN Sep.10: REGGIES, Chicago, IL Sep.11: OUTLAW RADIO CHICAGO, living room session Sep.12: TBA, Le Claire, IA Sep.13: THE DUSTBOWL, Madison, WI Sep.14: WISE GUYS, Mason City, IA Sep.15: WILD TYMES, Saint Paul, MN Sep.16: FLOWER … Continue reading
If you loved the Shivering Timbers Dan Auerbach-produced debut We All Started in the Same Place, be ready for a little shift. Sing Sing, the Kickstarter-backed album for which they’ll be playing an album-release show at Music in Akron this Friday, diverges from the quirky nursery rhyme tunes of their debut, instead reflecting more accurately the band’s live sound, with Sarah Benn’s strong vocals soaring open wide while Jayson Benn’s gorgeous guitar weaves and fuzzes out back on earth. As Sarah noted in her interview with Tim Quine over at Rubber City Review, We All Started… was largely an on-the-spot creation. But through all the subsequent gigging, Shivering Timbers have grown confidently and reflect that growth, their stronger self, gloriously on the Brian Olive-produced Sing Sing. Shivering Timbers – Generations from TurnStyle Films on Vimeo. While the album begins on lighter, brighter notes with title track “Sing Sing” and Neil Diamond cover “Holly Holy”, the stream of the album roils with the kind of darkness born from standing resolutely against life’s foes, reflected here in the Chuck Auerback-penned “Annalee”, as Sarah asks, “Who told the Lord I didn’t need her? Who told the Lord I didn’t love … Continue reading
In the time since we lost wrote about JC Brooks and the Uptown Sound, you may have seen their name thrown around some more, garnering more fans with their incredible live shows, and being added to this year’s Lollapalooza lineup. And maybe you’ve become curious enough to want to experience the ass-moving power for yourself. Or, at least, you damn well should have. But do you want more (eh? See what I did there?) to entice you? Check out the video for “Sister Ray Charles” (eh? See what they did there?) below and download the mp3. Download: “Sister Ray Charles” – JC Brooks and the Uptown Sound Now that you realize the regret that would dog you all the days of your life if you didn’t experience this fantastic band of entertainers live, mark your calendar for August 19, when JCBUS will return to the Beachland Tavern. R.A. Washington and the Family Dollar will play support (Washington was named among the most interesting people of 2012 by Cleveland Magazine) and DJ Charles McGaw will keep the sounds rolling between sets. I cannot properly express here how worth your time this show is, so go see and hear … Continue reading
It’s coming back! They showed ‘em it could still be done, last summer in Cleveland, spawning the Year of Deep Blues this year with the return of the original DBF in Minnesota last month and DBF Northwest coming up early next month. And Cleveland will be doing it again this year, with another great line-up. Favorites will return from last year, like Scissormen, Ten Foot Polecats, and the incomparable Molly Gene One Whoaman Band. And new don’t-miss acts are on the slate for this year, like Husky Burnette, the uniquely entertaining Bob Log III, and the great Robert Belfour. Damn! Here’s the info: Saturday September 22 2012 THE BEACHLAND BALLROOM 15711 Waterloo Road, Cleveland, Ohio $20/all ages/5pm EST start/4pm EST doors Scheduled bands: BOB LOG III ROBERT BELFOUR SCISSORMEN TEN FOOT POLECATS HUSKY BURNETTE MOLLY GENE ONE WHOAMAN BAND THE BLUE TREADS THE MISERY JACKALS SHANE SPEAL If you’re outside of Cleveland, you can purchase your tickets through Ticketweb. Though I recommend locals purchase tickets from one of your friendly local establishments. This year’s DBF Cleveland will be dedicated to late musician Jeff Norwood, who passed away this spring.
Oh, I’ve been waiting for this one. The sardonic Mr. Daniel Knox is bringing his unsettling cabaret songs to the Beachland Ballroom this Wednesday, April 11, when he opens for the Traveling Ladies’ Cello Society, a.k.a., Rasputina. I was taken by Knox’s rockbottom warble and dancehall piano (and kazoo – don’t forget the kazoo) when I first heard him play Couch by Couchwest back in 2011. He graced the stage again at CXCW this year with a magical rendering of his ethereally menacing “Ghostsong”. Incidentally, in addition to great albums like Evryman for Himself, Disaster, etc., Daniel has a new single – “To Make You Stay” (with the return of Akron son Ralph Carney on saxophone) b/w “Blue Car” – available at Bandcamp. To Make You Stay by Daniel Knox Show details: Wed, Apr 11 | 8:30 PM (7:30 PM door) Rasputina Daniel Knox $15.00 adv / $17.00 dos Ballroom | All Ages You can also catch Daniel with Rasputina at these dates: 04.06.12 Buffalo, NY The Tralf Music Hall 04.07.12 Toronto, ON Lee’s Palace 04.09.12 Detroit, MI Magic Stick 04.10.12 Chicago, IL Double Door 04.12.12 Morgantown, WV 123 Pleasant St 04.13.12 Baltimore, MD … Continue reading
Grandfather is going to be part of a free bar show tonight at Now That’s Class. I wrote about them about a year ago when I was sucked in by their heavy, Steve Albini-engineered album Why I’d Try. Showtime is 9 PM with Grandfather set to play at 10 PM. Come check them out. If you’re not in Cleveland tonight, they have a bunch more shows coming up around the country, including shows at SXSW. 3.05.12 – Cleveland, OH @ Now That’s Class 3.06.12 – Columbus, OH @ Ace of Cups w/ White Wolves, Stella, Tenth Generation 3.07.12 – Akron, OH @ Annabelle’s w/ The Hobs 3.08.12 – Bloomington, IN @ The Gourley Hole w/ Otis and the Rufies 3.09.12 – Louisville, KY @ Spinneli’s Pizza w/ Otis and the Rufies 3.10.12 – Nashville, TN @ The Thunderdome w/Otis and the Rufies 3.11.12 – Memphis, TN @ TBA 3.12.12 – Little Rock, AR @ Super Happy Fun Land 3.13.12 – Denton, TX @ Violitionist Sessions 3.14.12 – SXSW in Austin, TX 3.15.12 – SXSW in Austin, TX 3.16.12 – SXSW in Austin, TX 3:30PM Show 3.17.12 – SXSW in Austin, TX 2:00PM Show, 7:00PM Show, 1:30AM Show … Continue reading
CLE, who of you will be out at the Beachland booty-shakin’ with me tonight? JC Brooks and the Uptown Sound will be working out their soul thang in the Tavern. You can download an mp3 of the above song from Rolling Stone. Then get yourself to the Beachland and say hey. As always, I welcome you to buy your favorite blogger a drink. Thu, Dec 1 | 8:30 PM (8 PM door) JC Brooks & The Uptown Sound Aphrodite’s Hero DJ Charles McGaw $12.00 Tavern | All Ages
Aw, hell yeah, this is a cool event, kiddies. On December 7, 2011, at 9 PM EST, Saving Country Music will be streaming the Black Diamond Heavies’ set from the 2009 Deep Blues Festival. BDH performed at the very first DBF, and not only does the 2009 set feature core members John Wesley Myers (a.k.a. James Leg, who will be playing live in Cleveland, Ohio, on December 5 at Now That’s Class) and Van Campbell, but it also includes a reunion with original BDH member Mark “Porkchop” Holder and support from guru/roadie extraordinaire U.S. Justin and BDH buddy Andy Jody (whose long and illustrious resume includes Pearlene, James Leg’s solo album and Barrence Whitfield and the Savages, to barely scratch the surface). Be sure to trek on over to Saving Country Music ahead of time and download the live player plug-in beforehand so you’ll be ready when the fun gets going. And stock up on whiskey. It will be fucking awesome, I assure you.
NTSIB’s good friend Michelle Evans checks in with road report on Austin Lucas. Midwestern Ohio NOTE: Austin is playing Zanesfield TONIGHT. More details below. I was able to catch up with Bloomington, Indiana musician Austin Lucas this past weekend before his set at the Mercy Lounge in Nashville, where he and his back-up band for the past couple of weeks, Glossary, opened for alt-country Tennessee rockers Lucero. It was a line-up made in heaven, for which people from all over the country drove and flew in. We talked about what it was like for him touring with Glossary, his European fan base, and what’s ahead. You can catch him with his family band in Zanesfield, Ohio this Friday, November 25th at 7 p.m. at the Mad River Theater Works Studio, and/or next Friday, December 2nd at The Bishop with Murder by Death in Bloomington, IN. I don’t recommend missing these shows; he won’t be touring the U.S. again till next year. How’s it been touring with Glossary? Amazing. It’s like being on tour with five stand-up comedians. We just laugh a lot, and I mean a lot. Usually, I laugh a lot on tour, but it’s … Continue reading