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Horn of Plenty

CCM's new Director of Jazz Studies trumpets arrival of his first album

0 Comments · Wednesday, March 9, 2011
Trumpeter Scott Belck — who holds a doctorate in music studies, so that’s Dr. Belck to you and me — has a résumé that is almost ridiculously annotated with some of the greatest names in Jazz and Pop music, including the Woody Herman Orchestra, Manhattan Transfer, Linda Ronstadt, Aretha Franklin, Doc Severinsen and our own Blue Wisp Big Band.  

Hip Hop (Un)Scene: On to the Next One …

Rushing into a new project can rob potential of current one

0 Comments · Wednesday, March 2, 2011
Bleak-ass February is over. This, as far as I'm concerned, means winter is over. Oh, it might still snow in the next two to three weeks, but it's such a punk-ass snow. Winter in March is like an abusive alcoholic father you dealt with as a child and then grew up to see as nothing more than a sad old man swiping at the air and falling over. Snow all you want, old man — your time is near.  

'Theatre' Revival

Old 97's infuse latest album with propulsive energy of live shows

0 Comments · Wednesday, February 23, 2011
With last fall’s release of The Grand Theatre Volume One, Old 97’s added yet another twang-fueled burst of Power Pop/Roots music to their illustrious and lengthy career. The Dallas quartet began in 1993 as an AltCountry-styled Indie band, spent time on a major label, got dropped and then rebounded on wide-reaching independent label New West Records.  

So Say The Seedy Seeds

0 Comments · Wednesday, February 23, 2011
The Seedy Seeds have a "Verb Noun" on their hands. That's the new record, a darker-yet-still-danceable side of their Cincinnati-cultured, Indie/Electronic/Folk/Pop worth a thousand hearts. Or as the trio says...  

I Am Newman, Hear Me Score

New Randy Newman musical has local connection

0 Comments · Tuesday, February 15, 2011
Randy Newman’s foray into southwest Ohio this week, performing at Miami University’s Middletown campus Saturday, is a rare treat. It’s not that he doesn’t like going on the road, but he has so many competing interests it’s often difficult to find the time. In addition to being a singer/songwriter whose often-ironic, satirical and sometimes-character-driven compositions have become contemporary Pop classics, he’s also become a major composer for film.  

The Sweetest Redo

Mush Records releases physical version of Eat Sugar digital LP

0 Comments · Tuesday, February 15, 2011
It’s a proud moment when a band can celebrate the release of its debut full-length album, but slightly more unusual to celebrate the same release again six months later. But, as any fan will tell you, Eat Sugar doesn’t do much by the book.  

Fire on the Mountain

Mark Utley spearheads project to fight mountaintop removal mining

1 Comment · Wednesday, February 9, 2011
Poets have long understood the metaphorical power of music to move mountains, but Mark Utley hopes his new compilation album, Music From the Mountains, has the literal power to stop mountains from moving.  

Tokyo Police Club Entrance

A random chat with Tokyo Police Club guitarist Josh Hook

0 Comments · Wednesday, February 9, 2011
Tokyo Police Club will probably deliver another EP of Electro-laced Indie Rock in late 2011, but most of this year brings month-long tours and time for jamming. So says guitarist Josh Hook, who checked in by phone from Austin, Tex., more than 1,500 miles from his home in Toronto.  

That’s the Spirits

Sacred Spirits brings Psychedelic context to Post Punk on debut album

0 Comments · Tuesday, February 1, 2011
With their first anniversary still months away, Sacred Spirits’ sonic identity is still evolving, giving the band plenty of latitude to experiment in the studio and on stage. Plans for the coming year include recording their new material, working as many local gigs and as much regional touring as its members' schedules allow and continuing to push the boundaries of their creative expression.  

Playing By Heart

The Flaming Lips’ Steven Drozd releases first solo effort

1 Comment · Tuesday, February 1, 2011
Though he started out playing drums with The Flaming Lips, in recent years Stephen Drozd's role as cosmic tinkerer has expanded to include invaluable multi-instrumental contributions to the band’s sound. His recent soundtrack album is very much like an instrumental Flaming Lips record, but Drozd alone has crafted something here that is much more fun and engaging than the band’s recent output.   

‘Darkness’ Prevails

Icelandic composer brings fresh blast of Neo Classical air

0 Comments · Tuesday, January 25, 2011
Twenty four-year-old composer/performer Ólafur Arnalds has released two albums and three EPs since 2007 and toured with Sigur Ros. His music is infused with the kind of awe for nature one might expect of someone from a nation as beautiful, but cold, as Iceland.  

’Tronic Boom

Improv meets Electronic cool in latest project from resident bass genius Freekbass

0 Comments · Monday, January 24, 2011
These days, Freekbass’ outrage is contextualized by his formidable musical skills, particularly on bass, the instrument that has earned him global attention. His local back story is well documented — befriended by Bootsy Collins, band gigs with Sleep Theatre and SHAG, a burgeoning solo career, sessions and tours with the likes of Buckethead, Bootsy and countless others — but his most recent project might raise his profile to previously unimagined heights.  

Freddie Gibbs Builds Buzz

Hip Hop artist goes back to Indie roots

1 Comment · Wednesday, January 19, 2011
They say when times get lean it’s best to reel it in and stick together. Born and raised in post-industrial, Reagan-approved-crack-era Gary, Ind., Freddie Gibbs gets that. This would explain his grassroots approach to re-inventing a once-promising major-label-approved career into an independent DIY movement.  

Terrible Things Respond to Tragedy with Concept Album

Band's debut explores the consequences of destruction and change

0 Comments · Wednesday, January 19, 2011
Terrible Things' debut is a concept album shaped around a series of arsons in the bands' hometown of Coatesville, Pa. The trio maps out hooky, soaring AltRock that moves competently, peppering through interesting shifts and twists.  

Slothpop Isn't Slouching

Indianapolis Indie ensemble takes hold of imagination and ambition

0 Comments · Monday, January 10, 2011
At its most basic, Slothpop's sound is restrained Indie Pop. The arrangements are tempered and utilitarian in design, the melodies are sweetly sonorous but not overbearing and instruments move in and out with clockwork care. The overarching minimalism means you have to dig around for nuance and listen intently to soak it in. Slothpop's sound tends to not come to you; you have to get closer to it.