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Music Menu

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Babyshaker So, the debut CD release party is finally here and the glam/slam rockers move up several notches on the region's top rockin' outfits. The aforementioned new E.P., The Best of (Madam Epiphany), has the band sounding tightly wound and spewing out seven crunchy numbers. No ballads here, bro, just raw rock ranging from NY Dolls to 80s lipstick rockers and all da way to the new century punk. With The Rusty Nails. Saturday, Fat City. -- SS

Bastard Sons of Johnny Cash No, not really, of course. But they do often dress in black, and even took the further step of enlisting the services of the non-stigmatized true offspring of the Man in Black, John Carter Cash, to produce some tracks for their recently released Walk Alone. Musically, it's a jangly mix of classic country, trucker tunes, and someone like the Old 97s. There's a dab of hoke, and it certainly breaks no new artistic ground, but they rock harder than the similarly inclined BR549, though one imagines their record collection isn't as deep. Thursday, Double Door. -- TD

Hodgepodge Music Festival A good lineup here for the annual hoedown, featuring Jolene, who will play songs from their new record, Bessie Mae's Dream, who do the post-Dead thing nicely, the dragstrip bluegrass of Fudd and his Moonshine Racers, Statesville bluesman Abe Reid, and the song-centric jamming of Bellyful of Static, featuring the members of both, you guessed it, Bellyfull and Static. Saturday, Mojo Restaurant and Spirits. -- TD

Houston Brothers These brothers, a.k.a. Faircloth brothers who also play with local hipsters Les Dirt Clods and The Goldenrods, create a moody, minimal and haunting sound fit for a film soundtrack. The bros used all -- cello, lapsteel, percussion, piano, synth and more -- to create a disc titled I Take Care of You. The recording was originally made to accompany a theatrical performance this past summer. With Helicopter. High recommendation. Saturday, The Evening Muse. -- SS

Charlie Hunter Hunter's Bay-area improvisational mentality and musical worldliness combine rather seamlessly with the tradition and spirit of classic jazz. Hunter's quickly becoming one of the better known (and respected) jazz guitarists since the formative years of someone like John Scofield, counting admirers in both rock and jazz camps. Plus, his guitars are a treat in themselves, sort of a bass and guitar in one. Check out his new release Songs from the Analog Playground, a fine introduction to his style. Robert Walter's 20th Congress will open. Saturday, Amos' SouthEnd. -- TD

Freedy Johnston Freedy's oh-so-apt world observations, buoyed by a full-on pop sound, lyrical aptitude and a cool 'singing' voice, keep him on the IN pile. His guitar playing is twangy, trippy and commands attention, whether flying solo or jammin' with the homies. The snazzy new record, Right Between the Promises (Elektra), keeps the promise of a firmly established song creator. Thursday, Tremont Music Hall. -- SS

Lou Ford The latest in a string of nattily attired bass players, Poprocket's Jeff Larish, is the newest member of the Lous, and his rock-solid playing ought to blend nicely with drummer Darrell Ussery's percussive playing. The band's sandwiching these shows with gigs in Cleveland and Arlington, VA, so stop in and wish them luck. Brothers Alan and Chad Edwards still quietly remain in the cream of local songwriters, and have been dropping some new nuggets in regularly since the lineup shift. Good stuff, and not to be overlooked. With The Real McCoys. Friday, Double Door. -- TD

Tim Reynolds Reynolds' journey of acoustic guitar has landed on a burgeoning and aptly titled record, Nomadic Wavelength. Tim is most known for his collaborations with Dave Matthews but holds his own with precise playing, which hints of a classical guitarist, while the jams are laid on thick. Atlanta's Janah, a fusion of world sounds mixed with contemporary rock, opens the show. Monday, Visulite. -- SS

Peter Rowan / Tony Rice This is the Fifth Anniversary Celebration for the Neighborhood Theatre, and what a great show to do it with. Peter Rowan, the preeminent bluegrass-flavored voice/musician/bearer of good vibes, appears with Tony Rice, the exquisitely talented guitarist and temper. The pals are great together, as their last show here at the Neighborhood Theatre proved, both complementing each other perfectly while still allowing the other room to shine. The theater will celebrate its anniversary with giveaways and more, which should make for a fun evening. Wednesday, November 7, Neighborhood Theatre. -- TD

Semi-Pro A delightfully fuzzed-out new project from Tony James of the old band It Could Be Nothing, as well as some members of the defunct Kudzu Ganja. Great stuff in the vein of Fu Manchu or Nebula with more of a punk bloodline (think early Mudhoney, perhaps), all gleefully blissed out with James' rock-star-ready pipes. Best new local band of the year? With Dead City Radio. Friday, Cafe Bisous. -- TD *

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