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Learning To ‘Fly’

Ten years on, Kelly Thomas and the Fabulous Pickups release debut

1 Comment · Wednesday, November 9, 2011
Fly is the Pickups’ first album, which might seem surprising, given how long the band has been together. But musicians are notorious for their side projects, and Kelly Thomas is no different.  

As Ma Crow Flies

With The Lady Slippers, Bluegrass icon Ma Crow assembles her own Fab Four

0 Comments · Wednesday, November 2, 2011
When local Bluegrass legend Ma Crow considers the question of what makes her latest group, the all-female Lady Slippers, so unique among all of the amazing outfits on her storied résumé, she doesn’t hesitate in delivering her answer. “They’re ladies!” Ma exclaims at the Northside Tavern, responding figuratively and literally at the same time. “They’re down to earth, genuine."  

Ready to Die

The Ultimate Advice: Push yourself to make the best music possible

0 Comments · Wednesday, November 2, 2011
I’m not sure what I’m supposed to write about here, but I’m already overdue on turning this column in, so I’m sure I’ll think of something soon enough. I haven’t written one of these in a few months now. Truthfully, I haven’t even thought about writing one of these. It occurred to me a couple weeks back that it’s been a pretty minute since the last one, so I told Mike (the editor) that I would probably fall back for a while.   

Through the Past, Snarkily

Lou Barlow talks Sebadoh reunion, musical concision and bad ’90s music

7 Comments · Wednesday, October 26, 2011
Lou Barlow is a direct guy. The 45-year-old founder and main frontman for lo-fi Indie Rock stalwarts Sebadoh doesn’t mince words or waste time — a fact easily discerned when listening to his band’s concise, emotionally direct songs. It makes sense, then, that Barlow would be similarly to the point when discussing Sebadoh’s return via the “Bakesale/Harmacy Remembering Time Tour,” which stops at the Southgate House Thursday.  

Personal Stylist

Bettye LaVette’s soulful interpretation skills help her find whole new audience

0 Comments · Wednesday, October 19, 2011
Bettye LaVette’s late-career success story is one of the music business’ most remarkable. The powerful 65-year-old R&B singer/stylist first recorded in 1962 — “My Man — He’s a Lovin’ Man” for Atlantic Records, home in that era of such other classic Soul vocalists as Ben E. King, Solomon Burke, The Drifters, Percy Sledge and Aretha Franklin.    

All’s Wells

Jason Wells takes for algernon’s new iteration onto the stage and into the studio

0 Comments · Wednesday, October 19, 2011
After nearly a dozen years and four highly acclaimed albums as for algernon, Cincinnati singer/songwriter Jason Wells is experiencing something totally foreign but completely welcomed. Wells, the lone constant defining the band’s Indie Folk/Pop/Rock direction, is finally feeling confidence.  

Nominee Potpourri

The CEA.11 nominations bring another batch of veterans and newcomers

18 Comments · Wednesday, October 12, 2011
The nominations have been selected, and now it’s up to you to choose who should win trophies at this year’s Cincinnati Entertainment Awards (CEAs). Back for the 15th year, the CEAs are decided by public voting (save the Critical Achievement Awards, which are chosen by the nominating committee) and the awards will be given out Sunday, Nov. 20.  

Fine ‘Art’ History

Matthew Sweet looks back with the classic Girlfriend and on the new Modern Art

0 Comments · Tuesday, October 11, 2011
Under different circumstances, Matthew Sweet’s astonishing new album, Modern Art, would be the focus of his latest tour. The updated set would be crowded with Sweet’s newly crafted evocations of ’60s Pop and fleshed out with selections from his almost supernaturally consistent catalog.   

Norse Code

Local gang Winterhymn's Folk Metal

0 Comments · Wednesday, October 5, 2011
The Vikings were an interesting breed. They were vicious, bloodthirsty warriors who glorified slaughter, brutal killers who lived from one battle to another. But they also put a great emphasis on death and the afterlife and looked forward to eternal battles in Valhalla. This mixture of vicious power and fatalistic sorrow can be heard in the music of local sextet Winterhymn.   

Faith No More (Sort Of)

Underoath concentrates on Metal and de-emphasizes Christianity on new album

0 Comments · Wednesday, October 5, 2011
Since rising from the Metal hotbed of Tampa, Fla., in 1997, Underoath has undergone many structural and philosophical changes. The original quintet’s musical direction encompassed Metalcore as well as Death and Black Metal and, perhaps most importantly, they identified Underoath as a “Christian Metal” band.   

Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger

MidPoint Music Festival once again raised the bar

0 Comments · Tuesday, September 27, 2011
Last week's confluence of milestone events and anniversaries that all seemed loosely interrelated: R.E.M. announced its breakup, Nirvanamania re-swept the nation as the press and fans celebrated the 20th anniversary of a ground-breaking album and Cincinnati’s 10th MidPoint Music Festival experienced its most successful year yet, seriously upgrading the Alternative music festival’s profile in the music world.
  

Box It Up

MidPoint Midway’s Box Truck Carnival brings guerilla-style interactive art to Cincinnati

0 Comments · Wednesday, September 21, 2011
Now in its 10th year, the MidPoint Music Festival has grown from an annual outlet for local musicians to one of the best and brightest fests in the region, this year offering nationally and globally renowned acts such as Cut Copy, Mates of State and The Album Leaf. This year will also see the inclusion of Cincinnati’s visual arts talent, as ArtWorks and MPMF bring the foreign concept of the Box Truck Carnival to town.   

Deeper Cut

Australian Electro Pop group Cut Copy continues to evolve

0 Comments · Wednesday, September 21, 2011
Cut Copy’s move from Australian Electro-Dance upstarts to internationally recognized, festival-headlining purveyors of sophisticated Art Pop is complete. The foursome — led by frontman and founder Dan Whitford — has released three albums since 2004, including the recent Zonoscope, another addictive, synth-driven effort that also finds the band moving in new, less party-starting directions. They perform Saturday night at the MidPoint Music Festival.
  

The Young and The Loveless

Lydia Loveless blends Rock, Country, booze and tears on her amazing national debut

0 Comments · Wednesday, September 21, 2011
At an age when most people are contemplating the direction of their life, Lydia Loveless has already blazed an impressive trail. The 21-year-old native of Coshocton, Ohio, and current Columbus resident began playing bass with her two sisters in their band Carson Drew when she was just 13 and was playing solo shows at 15. Loveless performs Thursday night on Day 1 of the MidPoint Music Festival.
  

A Decade with No Decay

In 2002, the MidPoint Music Festival legacy began

0 Comments · Tuesday, September 20, 2011
My memories of the very first MidPoint Music Festival in 2002 are pretty vague. I remember bits and pieces from that inaugural fest, when the vast majority of performers were local. I recall being in the car way too much for such a fest — I caught bands at the Madison Theater in Covington, the Barrelhouse and Jefferson Hall in Over-the-Rhine and the Southgate House and Newport on the Levee in Newport. MPMF sure has changed in 10 years.