If there’s a commemorative tablet
somewhere inscribed with the names of the most unlikely people to be
drawn into the Grateful Dead’s musical universe, Jackie Greene should be
chiseled on it along with Pop/Jazz pianist Bruce Hornsby and former
Tubes keyboardist Vince Welnick.
If Cruz Contreras’ name sounds familiar,
you may remember his stint with Robinella and the CCstringband, the
jazzy Bluegrass group he co-founded with his wife Robinella Bailey in
the late ’90s (he was “CC,” naturally).
Just a few weeks ago, Daylight was out on
the road with Bayside, Four Year Strong and Cincinnati’s very own
Mixtapes, tearing things up good and proper and getting great notices
for their efforts. Apparently, lawyers were paying particular attention,
In the bustling, sprawling world of music
— really, any medium — there will always be worthwhile artists who go
generally overlooked. Though they have achieved some underground fame,
The Lawrence Arms are one of those bands that deserves better.
“Feel the Chill,” the first song on Blitzen Trapper’s latest, 2013’s succinctly titled VII, finds the Portland, Ore., outfit in new territory — it sounds like Kid Rock doing Mellow Gold-era
Beck covers, its funky beats, harmonica flourishes and Southern-fried
guitar lines almost enough to inspire dance-floor movement.
The cover of Grieves’ fourth full-length album, Winter & the Wolves,
features the Seattle-based rapper standing in a wintery landscape, his
black-clad frame engulfed by snow and ice. He’s holding a pickaxe, as if
ready to take on whatever challenge might come his way. It’s a curious
cover art choice in a Hip Hop world often bound by conformity.
Supergroups are problematic in that egos
and talent levels tend to cancel each other out, and musical
combinations that sound good in theory often implode in the execution
phase. The other musical construct that can be fraught with its own
particular series of pitfalls is the
musician-carrying-on-the-family-name scenario. Royal Southern Brotherhood would seem to
be flying in the face of a boatload of potential negatives as their
lineup reflects both situations.
Dawes is back! Why? I’m sure there are
legitimate reasons for their tour, but I’m going to wager that it’s
mostly just because they love Cincinnati so much. (Oh, and they're backing tourmate Conor Oberst during his headlining set.)
Potty Mouth features four ladies who call Northampton, Mass.,
home, which makes sense — the band’s full-length debut, last year’s Hell Bent,
sounds like it hails from the same place that spawned Dinosaur Jr.,
with noisy, interlocking guitars evoking a distinctly early-’90s vibe.
Matt Pryor maintains a creative pace that
would give the most hyperactive Type A personality an inferiority
complex. The vocalist/guitarist started off in the Ska/Punk band Secret
Decoder Ring two decades ago. When that band dissolved in 1995, he
formed The Get Up Kids with the Pope brothers and Jim Suptic from fellow
Kansas City locals Kingpin.