New Music Monday – 3/6/17

Check out our weekly recommendations of new music, with selections by Josephine, Tom, and Petee:

  • Dirty Dishes
  • Wavves
  • Royal Thunder
  • NAG
  • Jade Jackson

Dirty Dishes
Brooklyn, NY

Dirty Dishes’ real-deal alt rock wavera between ethereal and in your face. Pedal queen and brain child, Jenny Tuite, builds layer upon layer of insistent guitar gut and grime — think Silversun Pickups meet Sonic Youth with occasional Bjork-like vocals to crush. – Josephine

San Diego, CA
“Daisy” off of You’re Welcome due out on Ghost Ramp May 19

Freed from Warner Bros., Nathan Williams is releasing records on Wavves own Ghost Ramp label now. While this is a catchy, beachy indie pop tune, the title track, released the same day, seems to be a return to noise pop for the band. Wavves is masterful with both styles, so bring it on. – Tom

Royal Thunder
“April Showers” from Wick out April 7th via Spinefarm Records

Royal Thunder floats between the various sub genres of heavy rock, as evidenced by songs like April Showers. Powerful vocals over growling grunge/prog/post rock, there was a time when this song would have made heavy rotation on the rock stations, and that’s a compliment, not a knock. Highly recommended live, also. – Tom

“I’m So Small” 7″ out now on Total Punk

Total Punk is consistently putting out the best punk rock in the country currently. This menacing single from NAG starts with a plodding riff and then bursts into a hyper caffeinated, hyper speed punk ripper, and then alternates between the brakes and the accelerator for the rest of the song. Good stuff if you’re into grimy punk. – Tom

Jade Jackson
Santa Margarita, CA
“Finish Line” off of Gilded out May 19th

Trying to pigeonhole Jade Jackson’s style would be an undertaking that would never do the California raised artist justice. She’s managed to take influences from folk, singer/songerwriter, indie rock, and a little bit Johnny Cash and mesh them all seamlessly into a style all her own. Her latest single, Finish Line, is a masterful work that showcases her intimate lyrical style as well as her stunning voice. – Petee

Statesboro, GA
“Squid Pro Roe(d)” off of The Michael Jordan of Baseball due out on March 10th

Stick with me for this one. Take a bit of math rock. Now mix in a bit of emo, the old school stuff like Braid and The Promise Ring. Okay, now add a little pop-punk just to make it a little edgy. Now you’ve got an idea of what BiRDPERSON’s latest single sounds like. It’s a fantastic track filled with mathy guitar riffs and sing-songy vocals. Kind of like early Minus the Bear with a bit more punk styling to it which I can definitely back. – Petee

Album Review: BASK’s “Ramble Beyond”

In order to pinpoint what makes BASK’s metal so hauntingly beautiful, it might be dutiful to stare into the vast reaches of their influences.

Whether it’s the cathartic nature of the relentless breakdowns that sucks you in, or the level of charisma and passion they put into every emotive note, it’s undeniably southern metal.

The Asheville-based quartet birthed a sound early on that skillfully mixed influences from stadium rock, metal, southern rock, Americana, progressive rock with stoner rock escapades. Their debut album, American Hollow, was a 6-track introduction to their own unique approach to rock ’n’ roll.

The band’s sophomore album, Ramble Beyond, continues the conversation they started on American Hollow, but with more focus. They’ve shifted just slightly away from lighter classic rock and traditional southern rock themes, towards a darker, heavier feel.

The breakdowns on Ramble Beyond venture through the dark underbelly of tonal glory. The builds are thicker, more ramped up and cathartic as hell. The climb out of the slower, quieter moments sludges up a mountain of riff glory before summiting with a full assault of the band’s insane power.

Toying with more polyrhythms, and sweeter vocals, BASK is tighter as a unit on their second album, no doubt a result of years of touring, and seem to have reached a new level of comfort with each other as musicians. While moments on this album become predictable, they are nevertheless enticing.

The vocals have been toned down considerably from the first album. Guttural screams have given way to straight, ethereal singing with primal cries, often buried or leveled equally in the mix with more pronounced, heavier guitars and a rhythm section that would be the envy of any rock ’n’ roll band.

Taking cues from Allman Brothers jams to sludge metal riffs and Americana soul, BASK’s sound emerges more acutely on the new album as Southern gothic metal that is as dark and dreadful as it is soaring and beautiful.

The first track and first single off Ramble Beyond seems to encapsulate the album’s ethos. “Asleep in the Orchard” opens with a sweet, folky acoustic guitar arpeggio with lingering, ominous long tones rising in the first minute. A full assault of the band quickly reminds you this is not your daddy’s southern rock, before everything again slows into a molasses melody ripe with haunting solos.

BASK does an exceptional job of telling a wide range of stories in their music. Ramble Beyond is only six tracks, but it has a novel’s worth of shifting ideas, harmonies and melodies echoing simple notions expanded on in complex layers.

This is southern metal at its finest because it harps on all the strongest aspects of traditional southern rock styles in an original and unique manner.

Ramble Beyond will be available March 24th. For now, you can stream and purchase the first two singles below.

The Accomplices say “so long, not farewell” at Service Brewing – photos

I interviewed The Accomplices‘ Colleen Heine for my Do Savannah column just before the band’s much-anticipated “So Long, Not Farewell” show at Service Brewing recently:

“It was time to shake things up,” Colleen Heine of The Accomplices told me recently. “I think change inspires growth, and it’s good to get out of your comfort zone.”

About a month ago, Heine and her husband and bandmate Zach Smith moved to Colorado after Smith was offered an excellent professional opportunity.

The Accomplices have been a staple of the local scene for several years, so the couple’s departure is being felt in many ways, but Heine expressed excitement about the chances for individual growth and for the future of the band. […]

“It’s not the end of the book for The Accomplices,” Heine said, “it’s a new chapter. It means we’ll be a lot more selective about the shows we play, and our shows will obviously be less frequent this year, but we hope that means the shows we do play — like this Friday’s event at Service Brewing — are that much more special.

“And it means that, as individual musicians, we’ll be working on developing in new ways,” Heine added.

Predictably, a great crowd turned out for the event, and bluegrass band City Hotel was the perfect opener, both in terms of genre and the deep connections between the members of the two groups. Let’s hope we have a chance to see The Accomplices in Savannah again in 2017.

Savannah Stopover 2017 Spotlight – Hockey Dad

Hailing from Windang, Australia, Hockey Dad have been blurring the lines between surf rock and pop since 2013. On their latest album, Boronia, the duo have combined bright guitar riffs and killer drum beats to create a sound that embodies the essence of a summer day on the beach. It’s easy to see how infectious their killer beats can be, as they’ve already toured with the like of DZ Deathrays and Bass Drum of Death after having been together for just 4 years.

Be sure to catch Hockey Dad on the second floor of Wild Wing at 11:30 on Friday evening along with the other stellar acts of Savannah Stopover 2017. And stay tuned here for more artists spotlights over the next few days in addition to other Stopover tips and gems from us!

Larry Jack’s Magical Music Tour – 3/1/17 – 3/5/17

Hey guys,
This is another good week for music, spread all over town. There are a couple of good shows going on tonight, most nights it just depends on what your mood is. Have fun this weekend and don’t blow it out so much that you won’t enjoy next weekend’s Savannah Stopover.

Thursday 2nd
The Bunny Gang, The Attack, 69 Fingers, The Tom McGees, EffitJinx (8:30 show time, $8/10)
Holey Miss MoleyBarrelhouse South
Eric Culberson BandBayou Cafe

Friday 3rd
Puddle of Mudd, Saving Abel, TantricMusic Vault
Wasted Wine, Jonathan BrownEl-Rocko
Lyn AvenueTubby’s Thunderbolt (6p)
Aaron Paul Zimmer and Jason Bible Sentient Bean (8pm, $5)
Slick NickelSavannah’s Music City Bar and Grill
StyxJohnny Mercer Theater
TaukBarrelhouse South
Cash’d OutJinx
Charlie Fog Band – Molly MacPherson’s
Trae PierceCongress Street Social Club

Saturday 4th
Damon & The ShitkickersJinx Happy Hour
Peyote Coyote, Too Much, EmberingStarlandia
BBXFMolly MacPherson’s
In BusinessCongress Street Social Club
Megan Jean and the KFBWormhole
Lulu The Giant, McLeodJinx ($5)

Sunday 5th
Voodoo SoupCongress Street Social Club

Monday 4th
Craig Tanner & Mr. Williams Open MicAbe’s On Lincoln

Tuesday 5th
Cosmic DuoFoxy Loxy Cafe (7p)
Ben Keiser BandBay Street Blues
Eric Culberson Open JamBayou Cafe

A.U.R.A. Fest gets ambitious and it pays off

This year was one of Coastal Rock Productions most ambitious All Underground Rock All Day Festivals (A.U.R.A.) to date.

Coastal Rock did it up right with 15 bands, two stages, food trucks, vendors, plenty of booze, merchandise and major corporate sponsors transforming the normally docile museum space into fair-type environment with constant music. And by constant, I mean relentless metal and rock all day.

The performance schedule was on par all day. Once the second stage in the garden started at 5 p.m.—after the museum closed for the day—there was always music on one of the two stages. If you positioned yourself correctly, you could catch one band warming up while the other was finishing. At several points, they were ahead of the schedule by at least 5 minutes, or spot on.

I arrived around 3:30 and the fourth band was just getting started. It was a perpetual metal gauntlet after that. Nursing a sick hangover from an accidental drunken episode on Friday night, I powered through most of the day on only two-cylinders, mostly enjoying the music internally and with earplugs deep in my skull.

All of this dark beauty was painted with a mixed-aged crowd. With its emphasis on appealing to all ages,  A.U.R.A. Fest set an exceptional model for how entertainment should be done in this city. For of-age boozers, a wristband was available to properly and quickly ID. Easy solution.

Guess who was at the front of the stage for their favorite bands, singing along with all the lyrics and giving the performers a ton of energy to bounce off of? It wasn’t the old, hungover losers like me. Nope, it was the young kids up there, head banging, singing along and creating life-enriching memories.

Evidential foundations for my opinions can be found in the injuries sustained by several “pitters,” those mosh pit kings, and hardcore, Bruce Lee-type balls of energy. The pit got serious, though the injuries were just the kind of character-building ones that toughen your resolve.

I also offer as up as evidence the last two songs ZAO played in the penultimate concert of the day-long festival. Revelers up close knew all the lyrics and at times, frontman Dan Weyandt, simply let them sing. Which they did, and quite well I might add. (Guttural screams are not as easy as some might think.)

All in all, Coastal Rock, helmed by Timothy Walls, did an exceptional job at one of his most ambitious projects to date. I hope Walls keeps up the momentum. These festivals are super beneficial to the regional rock and metal scene.

He Is Legend at A.U.R.A. Fest 2017

Christopher Paul Stelling upcoming “Itinerant Arias” release

With the return of Spring in Savannah comes another year of Savannah Stopover, and with the three day music festival also comes Savannah favorite, and worldwide troubadour Christopher Paul Stelling. As I recall him telling me about performing annually at the fest, one year the conversation went a little like ‘if you’ll have me, I’ll be there every year’. We’re always fortunate to get a taste of his talent, especially as his star continues to rise. Catch him at Trinity, which is a perfect venue for this gent’s stylings on March the 11th; click on the highlighted Stopover link for more details.

Christopher Paul Stelling

Hopefully we’ll get a Q & A with Chris & his band on the southern run-thru of 2017. CPS has a new album coming out on Anti-Records in May, and the lead-in track is streaming from all of the usual sites. Here’s the video….

New Music Monday – 2/27/17

It’s already the end of February? 2017 is moving fast.

This week we’ve got some great new songs from The Mountain Goats, Hawks, Spoon, and Midnight Snack. Enjoy.

Midnight Snack
Asheville, NC
“Shadow Chaser” (single)

Midnight Snack’s latest single, Shadow Chaser, is absolutely filled with lush melodies and stellar ambiance. The art pop collective have found a way to weave together not only a myriad of instruments including trumpets and synths but also a wide array of stylistic influences ranging from psychadelic to chamber pop. – Petee

The Mountain Goats
Durham, NC
“Andrew Eldritch Is Moving Back To Leeds”

The Mountain Goats are never afraid to change their style up and their latest single from their next album, Goths, is a shining example of that. In their latest track, Darnielle’s sing-songy voice and narrative lyrics are accompanied by synths and bouncing, pop like bass lines. Not a far departure from The Mountain Goats traditional style, but bright and fresh enough to draw in new and old listeners alike. – Petee

No Cash Value full length lp out now on Learning Curve Records

Hawks are breaking up after 9 1/2 years but at least they’re leaving us with a killer final album. Snarling, muscular noise rock in the vein of Pissed Jeans or The Jesus Lizard, this might be right up your alley, if your alley is dimly lit, grimy, and a little unsettling. – tom

Austin, TX
“Can I Sit Next to You?” from Hot Thoughts out March 17 on Matador Records.

Metacritic named Spoon the top overall artist of the 00’s and their output since then has been equally solid, so it’s no real surprise that this is yet another quality tune from what one can only expect to be another fantastic album from a band at the top of their game. It’s almost funny how consistently great they are while still changing it up enough to stay interesting. – tom

PASSAFIRE upcoming Longshot release

The boys of PASSAFIRE are back again with a brand new release slated for May 12th on Easy Star Records. I’ll be doing a Q & A with them soon to discuss tour-life, thoughts on the future, and of course their return to Sonic Ranch, to record their latest effort.

In the meantime, enjoy this ‘teaser’ track….

Larry Jack’s Magical Music Tour – 2/23/17 – 2/29/17

Hey guys,
It should be another good weekend coming up. There are a couple of good shows on Thursday, which is always a good way to start the weekend. I think Friday should be the best night of the weekend. I really look forward to catching the Jinx show, but will try to catch a few of the bands at El Rocko. Saturday looks to be pretty fun too. I hope to make it out early enough to see Lulu the Giant at Tubby’s in Thunderbolt. Then bounce around to several shows on Congress Street later. And it looks like the biggest show of the week will be on Monday!!! I am not sure who will be the headliner at the Jinx, there are several strong bands playing that night. See y’all soon, I hope.

Thursday 23rd
Eric BrittTubby’s Thunderbolt
Machine Dreams, TimeEl Rocko
Groove OrientBarrelhouse South

Friday 24th
Jon Lee & The HexatonesTubby’s Thunderbolt (6-10p)
Jack Love & The Woodside Way BandSavannah’s Music City Bar & Grill
The Go RoundsWormhole ($5-10)
General Patton & The Heads Of StateMolly MacPherson’s
The Movement, Ben Lewis & The Kind DubBarrelhouse South
Faux Ferocious, Soft Option, SamfordEl-Rocko
The Woggles, COEDS, The Lipschitz – Jinx

Saturday 25th
Sonic ShockwaveSavannah’s Music City Bar & Grill
Lulu The GiantTubby’s Thunderbolt (6-10p)
Charlie Fog BandBarrelhouse South
Eric Culberson BandCongress Street Social Club
Scott Kelly (of NEUROSIS), Dead OakJinx ($10, 12)

Sunday 26th
Voodoo SoupCongress Street Social Club

Monday 27th
Craig Tanner & Mr Williams Open MicAbe’s on Lincoln
Agent Orange, Gutter mouth, The Queers, Atomic AgeJinx

Tuesday 28th
Clouds & SatellitesFoxy Loxy Cafe (7p)
Ben Keiser BandBay Street Blues
Eric Culberson Open JamBayou Cafe

Wednesday 29th
Eric Culberson BandBoomy’s

New Music Monday – 2/20/17

Another week, another New Music Monday. Enjoy!

Old 97’s
Dallas, TX
“All Who Wander” from their upcoming album Graveyard Whistling out Feb 24th on ATO Records

The J.R.R. Tolkien quote “not all who wonder are lost” is one of my favorite quotes, so I may have already been drawn to this song. Plus, I discovered solo Rhett Miller before I knew he had a band, so this was a nice surprise to hear new music from them. As the song starts out, it gives off a less twangy — but still Southern — feel than their last album. It also sounds much more gloomy at the beginning, but that quickly changes. As Miller says, “a trick the Old 97’s has held on to is to take a song that may have a darker theme and present it as something to be screamed along to in a club.” – Sarah

The Bombpops
Los Angeles, CA
Fear of Missing Out

Pop punk is one of the best exports from California and The Bombpops are a shining example of that. Their debut LP released on Fat Wreck Chords is filled to the brim with sing-songy harmonies and plenty of hooky riffs. They’ve taken a time tested formula and tweaked it just enough to keep the sound reliable, familiar, and, most importantly, fun. – Petee

Cincinnati, Ohio
Bottom of the Barrel

Lung is a band filled with complexity. You’d think a band featuring an electric cello and drums would lean towards a lighter, indie folk feel. And at times, the duo do certainly take their sound that way. However, they use this a a coy technique to really drive home some killer heavier cello riffs lines. Coupled with stellar drum work and vocal harmonies, Lung is certainly unlike any band out today and their latest EP is certainly worth a few spins as will be their upcoming debut LP. – Petee

Mac DeMarco
Alberta, Canada
“My Old Man” off of This Old Dog out May 5th on Captured Tracks

Canadian slacker weirdo Mac DeMarco seems to put this kind of goofy, super catchy indie rock almost effortlessly. Well, if he enjoys making it as much as I like listening to it, I think we can make this relationship work. – tom

Surfer Blood
“Matter of Time” from Snowdonia out now on Joyful Noise Recordings

I’ve listened to the retooled Surfer Blood’s new full length a few times now, and it seems to be a return to form for them. Straight up shimmering, well built indie rock that sounds right at home with Astro Coast and Tarot Classics, and that’s more than alright with me. – Tom

Boston, MA
“Dogs” from their upcoming LP, A Hairshirt of Purpose out March 31st on Exploding in Sound

Pile is a strange band. Weird song structures, off kilter guitars, peculiar lyrics that are delivered in an unexpected way, all these things make Pile unlikely to break through to the mainstream. To those musically adventurous and patient enough the payoff is fantastic, with songs that reward repeated listening and riffs that stay with you all day. I’m looking forward to this album more than any other this year. RIYL: Fugazi, Unwound, LOUDquietLOUD postrock. – tom

Velvet Caravan at Trinity Sanctuary Concerts – photos

Last night brought about the long-awaited return of hometown honky-tonk, gypsy-jazz favorites Velvet Caravan to a packed house at Trinity Sanctuary Concerts. It was announced from the stage by band-leader Ricardo Ochoa ‘we’re only going to be performing in Savannah several times a year’, as their national touring schedule has picked up, and what downtime they have is rightfully spent with family & friends. As with a lot of the local & regional acts that have been the regular ‘go-to’ entertainment over the last few years, the Savannah scene is changing a bit lately. I personally think it’ll be interesting to see what bands & performers begin to fill those regular ‘working’ spots.

The short of it is to catch both Velvet Caravan, and your other favorites, when the opportunities arise. Support for live music is the only way to keep the ‘scene’ alive, vibrant, and inspired, as well as to let venues & the city know how important music is to our culture.

Here are a few highlight photos, with more after the jump.