New Music Monday – 5/21/18

This week’s post includes work from Lucero, T. Hardy Morris, Big Ups, pronoun, and Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks, plus “Old Old Fashioned” by Frightened Rabbit with Kayne’s thoughts on the passing of the band’s Scott Hutchison.

Lucero
Memphis, TN
“To My Dearest Wife” from Among the Ghosts’out August 3rd.

It’s been a minute since Lucero or Ben Nichols solo has played Savannah, but at least there’s new Lucero on the horizon, and that’s very, very, good news. This doesn’t sound like a huge departure from their recent winning formula of Nichols world weary vocals in front of their signature blend of Americana, soul, and country rock, but why mess with perfection?
tom

T. Hardy Morris
Athens, GA
“Homemade Bliss” from Dude, The Obscure out June 22 via New West Records/Normaltown Records.

This second peek at the upcoming T. Hardy Morris album is damn near as good as the first, “Be”, which I’ve listened to pretty much daily since it came out a couple of weeks ago. I’m not sure there’s currently an upcoming album I’m more excited for.
tom

Big Ups
Brooklyn, NY
Two Parts Together, out now on Exploding In Sound Records

The only thing more chaotic than a new Big Ups record may be the mayhem that happens on stage during their live shows. The NY band delivers a carefully curated blend of crushing post-punk guitar work interlaced with Galarraga’s sometimes softly spoken, sometimes violently shouted lyrics. Tune in and get ready for a sonic pummeling. ~ Petey

pronoun
Brooklyn, NY
“wrong” off of pronoun’s upcoming debut album
pronoun is back with a new single off of her upcoming debut album on Rhyme & Reason Records. More of the slightly lo-fi, dreampop goodness we’ve come to expect from the NY native. Here’s hoping the album isn’t too far in the future! ~ Petey

Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks
Portland, OR
“Bike Lane”

Pavement frontman Stephen Malkmus’ 7th solo album Sparkle Hard dropped on Friday. Three singles from the album have been trickling out over the last few months and I’ve loved them all (particularly “Middle America which really does feel like a lost Pavement track) so I was excited to hear the rest of the album. “Bike Lane” is a standout track that musically rocks a little harder than most of the album and lyrically deals with the subject of Freddie Gray’s death at the hands of the Baltimore police back in 2015. It’s a controversial move by Malkmus because the lyrics make you very uncomfortable while the music sublimely pushes you forward. My guess is that that’s the whole point as I can’t stop thinking about this track. -Kayne

Frightened Rabbit
Edinburgh, Scotland
“Old Old Fashioned”

This isn’t new music but perhaps it’s new to some of you. I’ve been reeling from the news last week that Scott Hutchison from Frightened Rabbit was found dead outside of Edinburgh from an apparent suicide. Truly one of my favorite bands, I was so lucky to see him perform many times, most recently in Atlanta in 2016 at Terminal West. When people would ask me who would I most want to bring to Savannah Stopover, my answer was always Frightened Rabbit. Scott’s music, which often dealt with the issues of depression and anxiety, helped support and comfort people the world over. If you don’t know this band, take some time to dig deep into the their canon. It’s a treasure. RIP Scott. -Kayne

Larry Jack’s Magical Music Tour – 5/17/18 – 5/23/18

Thursday 5/17
Eric Culberson Band –
Bayou Cafe
Shoplifters, The Woggles –
Jinx ($10)
Rare Creatures, Dead Swells, Cole Collins –
El-Rocko

Friday 5/18
City Hotel – Service Brewing (5:30)
Pluff Mudd – Rail Pub (7p)
Atlantic City Boys – Randy Wood Guitars
Sister Hazel – Stage On Bay (8p, $29)
Stan Ray’s Soul Satisfaction – Jazz’d (9p)
Whitehall, City On Down, DJ Precisa – El-Rocko
Prime Real Estate – Molly MacPherson’s
Big Something – Barrelhouse South
Hanging Judge, Bastard Brigade, Jeff Two-Names & The Born Agains, Hale Bopp Astronauts – Jinx ($7)
Listen 2 Three – Congress Street Social Club

Saturday 5/19
Damon & The Shitkickers – Jinx Happy Hour
Chicago – Savannah Civic Center (8p, $55)
Allman Brothers Tribute Show – Southbound Brewery (7p, $20/25)
Sondorblue – El-Rocko
Just Ford – Molly MacPherson’s
Ike Stubblefield – Barrelhouse South
American Lesion, Minor Nine – Wormhole
Versatile – Congress Street Social Club

Sunday 5/20
Voodoo Soup – Congress Street Social Club

Monday 5/21
Flipturn – Sentient Bean (7:30)
Open Mic – Abe’s On Lincoln

Tuesday 5/22
Clouds & Satellites – Foxy Loxy Cafe (7p)
Ben Keiser Band – Bay Street Blues
Eric Culberson Open Jam – Bayou Cafe

Wednesday 5/23
Ben Keiser Band – Boomy’s
Lost In Society, Jeff Two-Names & The Born Agains – El-Rocko

New Music Monday – 3/14/18

Another collection of new music this week:

Big Ups
Brooklyn, NY
“Imaginary Dog Walker” from Two Parts Together out May 18 on Exploding in Sound.

Big Ups have been plugging away at it for years now, and have perfected their singular introspective post hardcore. A tense, spoken, grinding buildup leads to at least a bit of release at the end. Cool stuff. I’ve enjoyed their first two full lengths, I’m betting I’ll dig this one, too.
tom

Mitski
New York, New York
“Geyser” from Be The Cowboy out Aug. 17 on Dead Oceans.

You guys, Mitski is playing El Rocko on June 23. Holy shit. Wait, you don’t know who Mitski is? Umm, ok, wow. Wait, just check out this new song. See, no biggie, you’re up to speed now.
tom

The Pauses
Orlando, FL
“Digital Detox” from Unbuilding out June 22nd via Arctic Rodeo Recordings.

The Pauses are no strangers to Savannah, and that’s rad because they’re…well….rad, too. They deal in indie/pop/rock and this new single pushes all those buttons hard. Synths, distorted guitars, immediately catchy melody, this deserves WAY more airplay than it will probably get. Bonus indie cred for the J. Robbins production.
tom

Young Widows
Kentucky
“Checked In/Checked Out” from DECAYED: Ten Years of Cities, Wounds, Lightness, and Pain, out June 8 on Temporary Residence Ltd.

Young Widows have covered a lot of ground in their 10+ years of cranking out something somewhere between post punk and post hardcore. Don’t let that scare you, it’s a little dark, maybe in a heavier Joy Division way, but plenty melodic and accessible. The new album is a b-sides and rarities kinda thing, but if you dig this track, definitely check out their Old Wounds lp. Classic.
tom

Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks
“Refute” from Sparkle Hard, out May 18 on Matador Records.

The third great pre-release single from ex Pavement frontman Stephen Malkmus, this one a country flavored jam featuring some guest vocals from indie icon Kim Gordon. If the lead singles are any indication, I expect Sparkle Hard to be a contender for album of the year for me. Just a few more days……
tom

SUSTO at The Grey for Stopover in the Yard – photos

In between SUSTO‘s sets at the band’s awesome performance for Stopover in the Yard at The Grey, a good friend of mine wondered aloud what songs the band had yet to play. After all, we had heard so many great ones — and we had known every word, as most in the audience also did.

But then we started listing some of the songs that SUSTO hadn’t played yet, and we knew we were in for a killer closing set too.

I love the whole concept of Stopover in the Yard — the combination of booking and production by Kayne Lanahan and her Savannah Stopover team, the beautiful and slightly funky outdoor space at The Grey, a casual lunch menu from Chef Mashama Bailey, and Chatham Artillery Punch too, plus a portion of the proceeds benefiting a local nonprofit (Planned Parenthood this time around). There have been some wonderful bands, but the space has rarely filled and many patrons would leave before the Saturday afternoon music ended.

But not this time. SUSTO, led by the intense and talented Justin Osborne, sold out the show in advance, and the audience stayed till the end and wanted even more. The band seemed to know they’d be called back for an encore, so they slipped outside the gate into the lane through which random characters pass all day, and then came back for gorgeous renditions of “Smoking Outside” (I’ve put this post off for too long, so I’m pretty sure on that one) and “Chillin’ On The Beach With My Best Friend Jesus Christ,” a brilliant bit of songwriting. I’ve been lucky to hear that live before.

I don’t know how many more chances I’ll have to see SUSTO in a small-ish venue like the Yard at The Grey, but I’ll take advantage of whatever chances I get.

I took a lot of photos — I’m still struggling to take photos on bright days outside rather than in dark clubs at night, but here are a ton anyway. Great band, great day, great punch, great grilled chicken sandwich, great everything. Click on through for more.

New Music Monday – 5/7/2018

This week we’re listening to new work from:
Now, Now
Yoke Lore
Taken By Trees
American Aquarium
Family And Friends

Enjoy!

Now, Now
Minneapolis, MN
“MJ” off of the upcoming Saved due out on May 18th

Minnesota locals, Now, Now, have really started to hammer home the growth that they’ve gone through the 6 years since their last album. Their latest track has a markedly more pop-laden feel than the indie-rock releases they’ve put out in the past. The vibe has switched in a much more Lana Del Ray direction and I’m totally stoked to see what else the new album entails. ~ Petey

Yoke Lore
Brooklyn, NY
“Fake You”

Yoke Lore first fell onto my radar thanks to a stellar performance at a previous Savannah Stopover and I’m so glad they did. The NY based alt-indie project combines storytelling, synths, and killer, reverb laden vocals. ~ Petey

Taken By Trees
Sweden
“Vibrant Colors”

The latest single from the group’s fourth studio album is a soothing ode to a love that encompasses more than yourself and the lengths you’ll go to for it. The layered vocals, bongos and repetitive lines of “Vibrant Colors” make this song a fun one to blast on a road trip or a lazy Saturday. Taken By Trees album Yellow to Blue was released on May 4. – Caila

American Aquarium
Raleigh, North Carolina
“The World Is On Fire”

The latest offering from American Aquarium aptly demonstrates frontman BJ Barham’s growth as a musician, songwriter — and human. He says it best:

“I wrote the first two verses of “The World Is On Fire” the morning after the [election] results came in and quickly realized where the song was going. It was heading toward the same darkness and negativity that I was condemning. The song was becoming the exact thing I was writing to combat.Those verses sat in my notebook until mid-summer 2017, when I found out that my wife and I were expecting our first child in April. I came across the song at a moment of clarity and my point of view completely changed. Hope replaced hate. Certainty replaced confusion.”
– Caila

Family And Friends
Athens, Georgia
“Winding Roads”

This new live video from Studio 1093 in Athens has me more hyped than ever for the upcoming album Felix Culpa. Family And Friends is becoming more effective at harnessing their energy at critical moments — and that makes the songs even more powerful and effective when they let that energy loose. – bill

Larry Jack’s Magical Music Tour – 5/4/18 – 5/9/18

Hey everybody,
It looks like there are some pretty good shows going on this weekend. I hope to start the weekend with some City Hotel at Service Brewing, then jump over to the Rail for a bit of the Danielle Hicks Band. From there, I will probably bounce up and down Congress Street until I find a thing (or three) that I like. I am not familiar with many of the bands playing on Saturday, so I am not sure where I will end up. I do plan on making it by Molly’s to catch the Train Wrecks that night. There is one show during the week that I would recommend trying to make it out to see, Joe Nelson at the Foxy Loxy Cafe. He is one of Savannah’s most talented guitarists, it’s not often you see someone play six different string instruments in one night. If you are a fan of old-time music, you will not be disappointed. I hope to see you make it out to some live music this weekend, be sure to say “hello” if you see me around.

Friday 5/4
City Hotel –
Service Brewing (5:30)
Danielle Hicks Band –
Rail Pub (7p)
Waits & Co. –
Foxy Loxy Cafe (7p)
Thomas Claxton, Jon Lee & The Hextones –
Bayou Cafe
Pussy Launcher, Baby Born at the End of the World, She Blinded Me with Box Cutters –
Wormhole
Fooligans, Eagle Eye Williamson, Kudzu –
El Rocko
Ember City Album Release Party w/ Dylan Swinson, Lilakk –
Jinx
The Mercers –
Molly MacPherson’s
Waiting On Mongo –
Congress Street Social Club
Universal Sigh, LITZ –
Barrelhouse South

Saturday 5/5
Sound Experiment – Bull Street Taco (2p)
Americana-O-Rama – Driftaway Cafe (6p)
Damon & The Shitkickers – Jinx Happy Hour
Porch 40, Tenth Mountain Division – Barrelhouse South
Daas & Future Culture Showcase – El-Rocko
Damon and the Shitkickers – Jinx
Jacob Evans – Prohibition
Train Wrecks – Molly MacPherson’s
Liquid Ginger – Boomy’s

Sunday 5/6
The Temptations, The Four Tops – Savannah Civic Center (7p)
Voodoo Soup – Congress Street Social Club

Monday 5/7
Open Mic – Abe’s On Lincoln

Tuesday 5/8
Joe Nelson – Foxy Loxy Cafe (7p)
Ben Keiser Band – Bay Street Blues
Eric Culberson Open Jam – Bayou Cafe
Open Mic – Molly MacPherson’s

Wednesday 5/9
Ben Keiser Band – Boomy’s

New Music Monday – 4/30/18

And this week brings new tracks from:
Omni
Sleep
Pile

Enjoy!

Omni
Atlanta, GA
“Sunset Preacher b​/​w Confessional” 7″ out now on Chunklet World Industries.

Another impossibly cool pair of tracks from Atlanta’s post punk trio Omni. Think Wire and that type of clean, tight post punk and you’ll be in the neighborhood. Cool stuff, you know, if you like cool stuff.
tom

Sleep
California, USA
“Marijuanaut’s Theme” from The Sciences, out now on Third Man Records.

It’s no accident that Sleep dropped a new album on 4/20, but it sure was a surprise. 20ish years after the epic stoner metal masterpiece that is Jerusalem/Dopesmoker, the trio have released a follow up and, well, it may have been worth the wait. If you like doom metal you’ve already listened to this a bunch, but if not expect Sabbath grade riffs, tone for days and some awesome nonsense about….uhhh….weed mostly, it sounds like. Pretty sure there’s a line about a hashteroid in there. Anyway, I’m guessing you already know whether this is for you or not, but you can always check out this song if not.
tom

Pile
Boston, MA
“Keep the Last Light On” from the Musicians Take Aim to End Gun Violence compilation.

I don’t know how many people are as big a fan of Pile as I am, but those who are will definitely want to check out this plaintive, previously unreleased song featuring some banjo picking in the background. God, I love this band.
tom

8th Annual A-Town Get Down w/ Chuck Leavell, Randall Bramblett, Walter Parks, Bernard Purdie, more – photos

What a beautiful day for the 8th annual A-Town Get Down Festival. Like in 2017, the festival took over the end of Indian Street — a tremendous combination of spaces for A-Town’s celebration of the visual arts, music, and community.

I got to A-Town a little after 5 p.m. last Saturday, just in time to enjoy some of Bloodkin from Athens and then great sets from Webb Wilder (who played the indoor stage at Ghost Coast Distillery); Walter Parks, Vivian Sessoms, and legendary drummer Bernard Purdie; Randall Bramblett; and Chuck Leavell, who has done some compelling solo work but is best known for his decades as the keys player for The Rolling Stones.

Along the way, I also had some stellar fried shrimp and the world’s best peach cobbler from the Platinum Pizza food truck.

Because I arrived about halfway through the event, I missed a number of bands as well as many of the day’s art happenings, so regrettably this photo gallery doesn’t capture the full breadth of the festival. Click on through for lots more.

New Music Monday – 4/23/18

We really have some great stuff for this week’s post:

  • T. Hardy Morris
  • Courtney Barnett
  • Prince and The Revolution
  • FIDLAR
  • Wimps

Enjoy:

T. Hardy Morris
Athens, Georgia
“Be” off the forthcoming Dude, The Obscure due out June 22

What a beautiful surprise. This rich and sublime first track off T. Hardy Morris’ upcoming Dude, The Obscure, which is a clear nod to Thomas Hardy’s tragic and fatalistic novel Jude the Obscure, suggests a significant shift from the southern grunge of the brilliant 2015 album Drownin’ on a Mountaintop. We loved that record and the live shows it spawned — and we can’t wait to hear more of this new work. – bill

Courtney Barnett
Sydney, Australia
“City Looks Pretty” off of the upcoming Tell Me How You Really Feel due out on May 12th

Courtney Barnett, one of 2016’s best indie rock acts. is back again and prepping for the release of long awaited sophomore album, Tell Me How You Really Feel. Featuring Barnett’s signature deadpan singing style as well as her aloof and slightly stream of consciousness lyricism, the track is everything and more that fans have come to expect from Barnett. ~ Petey

Prince and the Revolution
Minneapolis, MN
“Nothing Compares 2 U”

It certainly doesn’t feel as if it’s been two years since we’ve lost one of the greatest performers and musicians of a generation. The world won’t be going on without Prince for a very long time as bits of the artist’s extensive catalog that never saw the light of day is slowly released by his estate. Most recently, we’ve been gifted Prince and the Revolution’s original recording of “Nothing Compares 2 U” which gained popularity via a cover performed by Sinead O’Connor. ~ Petey

FIDLAR
Los Angeles, CA
“Alcohol”

FIDLAR may seem like a bunch of degenerate, rock and rollers, but when it comes down to it, they really are a bunch of nice guys. Don’t let that convince you for a second that their raucous brand of garage rock won’t get a party started in 3 seconds flat. Time to crack open a cold one and get ready for the weekend. ~ Petey

Wimps
Seattle, WA
“Garbage People” from an album of the same name, due out July 13 on Kill Rock Stars.

Another crazy catchy tune from the seriously endearing Wimps, this one an upbeat ditty about trash. Neat. Seriously, though, if you’re bummed The Thermals broke up and need some minimalist but catchy and fun rock to fill the void, check out Wimps.
tom

Larry Jack’s Magical Music Tour – 4/20/18 – 4/25/18

Friday 4/20
Eric Culberson Band – Tubby’s Thunderbolt (6p)
Anders Trio – Rail Pub (7-10p)
Spirit Wing – Sentient Bean (8p)
Tauk – Barrelhouse South
George Clanton, Negative Gemini – El-Rocko
American Hologram – Molly MacPherson’s
South Hill Banks – Congress Street Social Club 

Saturday 4/21
A-Town Festival – Indian Street (12-10p)
Daniel B Marshall, Brian Fuller, Lyn Avenue, 8 Mile Bend and the Hypnotics – Wingstock at Wild Wing Cafe Pooler (4p)
Hitman – Tubby’s Thunderbolt (6p)
Damon & The Shitkickers – Jinx Happy Hour
Dirty Bird and the Flu – Sentient Bean (8p)
Faux Ferocious, Old Money, Santi – El-Rocko
Just Ford – Molly MacPherson’s
Tribal Hoose, Collin Middleton Band – Barrelhouse South
New Familiars – Congress Street Social Club
Pointless Honey, Jucifer – Jinx

Sunday 4/22
Voodoo Soup – Congress Street Social Club

Monday 4/23
Mr. Wait and Jim Shorts – Sentient Bean (8p)
Open Mic – Abe’s On Lincoln

Tuesday 4/24
Clouds & Satellites – Foxy Loxy Cafe (7p)
Ben Keiser Band – Bay Street Blues
Eric Culberson Open Jam – Bayou Cafe
Open Mic – Molly MacPherson’s

Wednesday 4/25
Ben Keiser Band – Boomy’s

Savannah Music Festival finale brings Tedeschi Trucks, Jason Isbell, many more to stellar Trustees’ Garden venue – photos

3 stages. 12 bands. The most ambitious outdoor music festival in the city’s history. The public unveiling of a huge new/old indoor-outdoor complex after a long multimillion dollar restoration and rehabilitation project.

In my City Talk column in the Savannah Morning News, I shared some first impressions of the Savannah Music Festival’s finale at the newly unveiled Trustees’ Garden in the northeast corner of Savannah’s Landmark Historic District. The new spaces are the result of hard work and considerable investment by owner Charles H. Morris, and we’d like to give a shoutout too to all the others who worked to rehabilitate the grand Kehoe Iron Works and the rest of the site. Special thanks to Lominack Kolman Smith’s lead architect Kevin Rose, owner of Elevated Basement Studio and a friend of hissing lawns.

And thanks to the staff and board of the Savannah Music Festival for taking the artistic and financial risks of putting on such a large-scale, lovingly produced event to close out this year’s 17-day fest.

Let’s start with a few photos, but you can click on through for more commentary and photos:

Tedeschi Trucks, Jason Isbell, Gillian Welch, many more for unveiling of Savannah’s major new venue

The Savannah Music Festival wraps up on Saturday, April 14 with an all day finale (noon to 10:30 p.m.) on three stages encompassing the Morris Center, the freshly rehabilitated Kehoe Iron Works, and the expansive grounds of Trustees’ Garden.

Here’s part of what SMF director Rob Gibson told Joshua Peacock for Do Savannah:

“There have been plenty of outdoor events over the years, but I don’t think there’s been anything like what we’re about to stage with the breadth of artistic talent: Cuban bands, Venezuelan groups, rock bands, jam bands, and folk musicians.

“We’re also erecting a huge stage with a huge sound system, with Meyer equipment,” Gibson continued. “It’s an ambitious day. We’re hoping to get 5,000 people. Trustees Garden is one of the most unique concert spaces this city will have ever seen. Charles Morris carved that hill out and shaped it like an outdoor amphitheater. We have a stage at the bottom of the hill and another by the building.”

In a lengthy piece for in Connect Savannah, editor Jim Morekis takes a deep dive into the site’s history and importance — both historical and contemporary. He writes in part:

Developed by Charles H. Morris, locally-based owner of Morris Multimedia — which includes Connect Savannah — the Kehoe Iron Works project located at East Broad Street in the downtown historic district is the culmination of a four and a half year, multi-million dollar restoration and repurposing which is one of the premier such projects in the country.

“Savannah’s been really good to me, and to all of my family,” says Morris. “I want to give something back to this city. I’m a lucky man to live here.”

The historic site, once a vital and vibrant steel foundry started by William Kehoe in 1883, languished unused for nearly 30 years as a brownfield owned by Atlanta Gas Light.

In a series of purchases beginning in 2003, Morris garnered the entire nearly seven-acre Trustees’ Garden tract, the site of an early experimental garden planted by British colonists who arrived nearly three centuries ago with General James Oglethorpe.

Wait, 5000 people? That’s an ambitious number — more than twice the capacity of the Johnny Mercer Theatre (a venue with some deep flaws) at the Civic Center. I’m certain that the top 2 headliners of the SMF finale — Tedeschi Trucks Band and Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit — could sell out shows this week at the Mercer, but there would surely be a lot of overlap in those audiences.

But combine those two acts with the rest of the lineup — more or less in order through the day: Betsayda Machado and Parranda el Clavo, Savannah-based Velvet Caravan with special guest Jessica Ann Best, Mipso, Brett Dennen, Stringband Spectacular feat. Mike Marshall, Julian Lage, Moira Smiley and Mike Block, Brent Cobb, Daniel Hope & Mike Marshall, Gillian Welch, Marc Broussard, Sammy Miller and the Congregation — and put the show in a historic venue that might forever transform the festival experience in Savannah, and 5000 starts looking more doable. It’s not cheap (current general admission prices are either $120 or $140), but it’s going to be a remarkable day — tickets here.

Of course, so far I haven’t even said anything about the acts, which are stellar all the way through. I’m especially a fan of Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit, but there are excellent performers throughout the day.

The SMF’s FAQ includes the detailed info you need re food trucks, permitted items, banned items, general policies, etc.