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Acarya Celebrates New “Tribal Rock” EP

Plus, Healing Power (formerly Pomegranates) plays farewell show and Shake It reissues The Sacred Mushroom's 1969 debut/swan song

By Mike Breen · November 26th, 2013 · Spill It
acaryaAcarya's 'Reperio Terra' EP - Acarya

Cincinnati duo Acarya celebrates the release of its new EP, Reperio Terra, Friday at The Drinkery (1150 Main St., Over-the-Rhine). The twosome is joined by local Rock/Blues quartet The Whiskey Shambles for the free event. Showtime is 9 p.m. The EP can be pre-ordered at acaryaband.com, which offers various price levels that include perks like T-shirts, signed CDs and access to a variety of website exclusives. 

Although Acarya’s minimal lineup — Wes Davidson on vocals and acoustic guitar and Liz Wu on percussion and harmony vocals — might suggest something sparse and perhaps even gentle, the group’s chosen descriptor, “Tribal Rock,” comes a lot closer to capturing the full, lively sound the duo conjures on Reperio Terra. With a typical “electric Rock band” lineup, Davidson and Wu’s songs would come off more like a typical Modern Rock band. But with Wu’s huge, textural rhythmic thrust — created on a specially designed drum kit consisting of a variety of worldly percussion instruments — and the intuitive, versatile songwriting, Acarya comes up with a sound all its own. 

Davidson’s vocals and melodies have the warm, emotive qualities of Peter Gabriel, a perfect match for the World music flavors of Wu’s very musical approach to percussion, while the songwriting has a fluid, organic quality that furthers the hypnotic power of the six-song EP. The band’s worldly, original fusion of styles has led to a range of comparisons (like The Civil Wars meets Led Zeppelin or Rusted Root meets Pearl Jam), but, ultimately, Acarya has come up with something truly special and unique. Ignore the comparisons and sample the duo’s music yourself at reverbnation.com/acaryaband or, even better, at The Drinkery on Friday night. 

Healing Power/Pomegranates Split

One of Cincinnati’s finest musical exports of the past decade will be playing its final show this weekend. Formed in 2006, Indie Pop quartet Pomegranates released several widely acclaimed albums and toured the country regularly, building up a loyal fan base.

This past summer, the band kicked off the every-Friday MidPoint Indie Summer concerts on Fountain Square under a new name, Healing Power, but their artsy, melodic sound was still as strong as ever and the group showed no signs of slowing down. 

But behind the scenes the band was hitting roadblock after roadblock, according to drummer Jacob Merritt. Merritt says that, while all bands expect a certain amount of obstacles and “let downs,” for Pomegranates/Healing Power, “it felt like everyone we trusted (in the industry) ended up slowing down our momentum.” 

Saturday night, Healing Power/Pomegranates plays its last show at the Southgate House Revival’s Sanctuary (111 E. Sixth St., Newport, southgatehouse.com), joined by special guests DAAP Girls, Public and Sun Country. The all-ages show begins at 9 p.m. Tickets are $10 in advance through ticketfly.com or $12 at the door. 

Disappointed fans can take some solace in one final release from Healing Power, to be issued in conjunction with the farewell show. The four-track release includes two songs recorded in Virginia with Alan Weatherhead that were scheduled for an aborted 7-inch vinyl single, plus a pair of recordings from late last year that were intended for a new full-length album that never materialized. 

‘The Sacred Mushroom’ Reissued

This “Black Friday,” instead of fighting the masses at the big-box stores, music fans can find some special new releases at Greater Cincinnati’s independent record shops. (Visit recordstoreday.com for a list of participating stores and the wide array of releases.) The label branch of one of those stores, Shake It Records (4156 Hamilton Ave., Northside), is offering a special reissue of a classic Cincinnati album just in time for the Black Friday festivities. 

The Shake It label’s “Music from Ohio” series, a collection of releases spotlighting out-of-print and hard-to-find music from the area’s rich musical heritage, debuted last year around this time with the double-vinyl compilation Play It Like You Did Back to George Street, which included several obscure, regional Blues recordings from the ’20s and ’30s. 

For Volume 2 of the series, Shake It is reissuing the late ’60s self-titled debut/swan song from The Sacred Mushroom. Originally released in 1969 on the Parallax label, the Blues/Rock/Psych band featured singer/guitarist Larry Goshorn, who would go on to join the wildly successful Pure Prairie League, and his brother, singer Danny Goshorn (Larry would go on to form the locally popular Goshorn Brothers). Though the band was short-lived, The Sacred Mushroom album became legendary with record collectors, leading to a steady flow of bootleg versions over the years. 

The Goshorns reissued the album on CD in 2001 and Shake It used those master tapes for the 2013 version, which is being pressed on vinyl and will include the original artwork. The album’s pressing is limited to 500 copies and goes on sale Friday at the store; it will be available online starting Dec. 2 at shakeitrecords.com.

CONTACT MIKE BREEN: mbreen@citybeat.com or @CityBeatMusic or here on Facebook.



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