CityBeat Blogs - Free Download <![CDATA[Walk The Moon Leak New EP Track]]> This coming Tuesday, RCA Records will release a new EP by Cincinnati AltPop quartet Walk The Moon. The Tightrope EP features the title track — WtM's current single from last year's self-titled LP — in its original form (check the music video here) and an acoustic version, plus new recordings of "Tete-A-Tete" and "Drunk in the Woods," album "B-side" "Anyway I Can" and a live version of the group covering the Talking Heads' hit "Burning Down the House."

Today, Walk The Moon leaked "Tete-A-Tete" via Twitter. Check it out below.
Tonight in Minneapolis, the band starts its latest round of touring, which will take them all over the States and Europe through March.

UPDATE: Billboard magazine reported on Walk The Moon's Tightrope EP this afternoon. Click here to read it and listen to the EP's live version of the band's excellent "Burning Down the House" cover.
<![CDATA[Wussy Says 'Thanks!' With Free Rarities Album]]>

Cincinnati Rock foursome Wussy had its biggest year by far in 2012, as the band traveled extensively for the first time, securing some great opening slots on tours by The Afghan Whigs and The Heartless Bastards. The band also gained a fan base in the U.K., where the label Damnably Records issued an acclaimed compilation culled from the band's previous albums called Buckeye (frontpeople Chuck Cleaver and Lisa Walker traveled to the U.K. to tour and promote the release).

With their press kit more overflowing than ever with international reviews and a variety of key radio appearances, Wussy's members are in a grateful mood. To say, "Hey, thanks," to their fans new and old, the group has issued Berneice Huff and son, Bill sings… Popular Favorites, a free
compilation download that includes demos, rarities, b-sides and more.

Berneice Huff and son (named for that irresistible album cover travesty) kicks off with an intro from NPR's Terry Gross, taken from when Fresh Air did a piece on the group in 2009. The rest of the collection is a treasure trove for Wussy completists, with live radio sessions and interviews, a few cover tunes and the initial three-song demo that Cleaver took to Shake It in 2003 looking for a record deal.

Click here to download Berneice Huff and son, Bill sings… Popular Favorites and read more about the material included.

Here's one of the track from the collection, Coltrane Motion's remix of "Maglite," from the remix compilation This Will Not End Well, which featured several local artists' reworkings of Wussy songs (Coltrane Motion is based in Chicago but originated in Cincy).

<![CDATA[Music Tonight: Earth, Iris Dement and More]]>

• Instrumental Avant Metal veterans Earth bring their adventurous, spontaneous Dronecore to downtown tonight for a hypnosis session at the Ballroom at the Taft Theatre. Showtime is 8:30 pm. Stebmo, Earth collaborator and progressive Jazz pianist/multi-instrumentalist/composer Steve Moore, and psychedelic, noisy Doom duo Eagle Twin open the show. Tickets are $15.

Guitarist Dylan Carlson gave birth to Earth in Olympia, Wash., circa 1990, and remains the only original member in a band that has seen numerous lineup and stylistic shifts. The group put a pair of albums out on Sub Pop during the "Grunge Revolution" (which they had little in common with), got booted from the label briefly and then welcomed back for three more albums. While Earth's aggressively experimental sound didn't quite fit the Grunge buzz, the group actually used the genre's concept of "slowed down Hard Rock and Metal" and took it to the extreme, decelerating even more and replacing Grunge's Punk and Garage influence with inspiration from avant grade composers and musicians and Carlson's singular vision.

Earth didn't survive the ’90s but returned in the early ’00s to start a run that has included several releases for Southern Lord Records, a haven for "Metal" artists on the more experimental side of the music. Earth's latest release is the improvised Angels of Darkness, Demons of Light II, the follow-up to part I (and actually recorded at the same time) which has been praised for its gradual, natural exploration of different tones and approaches. Earth's trippy, glacial sound on Demons of Light II is infused with evocative cello and smoky atmospherics and often sounds like a new slant on modern Jazz, something Mingus might have come up with had he been into Black Sabbath.

Here's Demons II track "The Corascene Dog":

• Acclaimed by both fellow artists, critics and her dedicated fan base, Iris Dement  has been one of the more compelling singers in the Americana movement since she put out her first album in 1992;
her mesmerizing voice has a timeless soul that recalls the best early Country female vocalists. Dement's sound has evolved and taken detours over time. After two straight-forward Country/Folk Pop LPs, the 1996 album The Way I Should showcased a Rock vibe and some serious political commentary. She followed that up by collaborating with John Prine on his In Spite of Ourselves album, which scored her a Grammy nomination, but Dement took a break from music after that.

In 2004, Dement returned with her first album in eight years, Lifeline, released on her own label after her Warner Brothers contract expired. But Lifeline was primarily a collection of centuries'-old Gospel covers. This year, Dement released Sing the Delta, her first album of new material in 16 years. The songs harken back to that purity of her first couple of albums, but also shows how Dement has matured as a composer and performing. She writes with more confidence and has become an even better lyricist, creating an album that is mournful, poignant and poetic.

Dement performs tonight at the 20th Century Theatre in Oakley with The Tillers, one of Cincy's finest Folk acts who are coming off of a successful release party for their recent live album. Showtime is 8 p.m. and tickets are $25-$30. Here's DeMent's "Go On Ahead and Go Home" from Delta.

• Milwaukee-based Psych rockers Moss Folk perform a free show tonight at MOTR Pub in Over-the-Rhine with like-minded locals Children of the Emerald Fire. Showtime is 10 p.m.

Formed in Michigan in the mid-’00s by founder Andrew James Shelp, Moss Folk entrancingly collages influences into a sound that draws from a wide range of music that could fall into the "Psychedelic" category. You'll hear elements of Kraut Rock, Pink Floyd, World music, Tangerine Dream and Spacemen 3 mingling in Moss Folk's ambient, hypnotic melange and the band has been known to match the lysergic sonics with fitting visuals (from video projections to cameos by various non-musical performing artists).

Here's a live clip of Moss Folk:

moss folk - red from brownshoesonly on Vimeo.

• Tennessee ElectroJam/Livetronica trio Arpetrio performs tonight at The Mad Frog in Corryville. The show starts at 9 p.m. with locals Don't Fear the Satellites. Admission is $5.

Bringing their Rock and Jazz chops together with a creative technological prowess, guitarist/keyboardist Alex Mindermann, bassist Trent Little and drummer Wes Taylor have performed with the likes of EOTO, Papadosio and RJD2, as well as at numerous Jam fests across the country. The group's fluid sound and deft use of loops, synths and samplers puts them on par with some of the bigger artists making this kind of warm, spontaneous, beat-heavy Trance/Fusion (Sound Tribe Sector 9, The Werks, Big Gigantic, etc.).

Click below to sample the group's 2012 release Triggology, then click here to download your very own copy for free.

Click here for even more live music events tonight in Greater Cincinnati.

<![CDATA[Music Tonight: King Tuff, Charlie Hunter and More]]>

Lo-fi Garage Pop royalty, King Tuff, performs a free show tonight at MOTR Pub with Cleveland's Gap Dream. King Tuff is the pseudonym and band name of Kyle Thomas, a Vermont native now based in L.A. who, after a dozen years working of Tuff material as a side project to bands like Feathers and Witch, released the debut full-length Was Dead in 2008 and started focusing solely on King Tuff. It turned out to be a fruitful decision; Sub Pop Records signed King Tuff and put out its self-titled sophomore album this spring.

Click here to read more about King Tuff, check out the official video for the recent album's "Alone & Stoned" and use the widget below to get a pair of free KT tracks to download.


Charlie Hunter is the kind of guitarist who you can watch and be mesmerized not just sonically but also visually. His unique technique (playing lead, rhythm and bass runs all at once) and adventurous style has helped him build an eclectic fan base. Hunter's involved in many projects, including his duo with drummer Scott Amendola. The pair recently released the conceptual album Not Getting Behind is the New Getting Ahead.

"Our intention in making this record was to tell a bunch of stories around the central theme of the album’s title,” Hunter is quoted on his website talking about the project. "The new tunes are meant to evoke some of the things you might see in your travels through the USA these days. Scott and I wanted to think of each composition as a starting point for some kind of narrative." (Read more about Hunter and the project here.)

Hunter and Amendola perform tonight at the 20th Century Theater in Oakley. Showtime is 8 p.m. and tickets are $20. Here's the twosome performing earlier this year.

• Young Southeastern Indiana Country Pop trio Jetset Getset promotes its debut album Saturday Night (which was released in early October) tonight at Toby Keith’s I Love This Bar & Grill next Great American Ball Park. Showtime is 8 p.m. The trio, whose members are 14 and 15 years old, were on a Nashville TV show when retired producer/DJ Jack Gale saw them and decided to come out of retirement to sign them to his Playback Records. The group has that catchy, twangy sound that Country and Pop radio are both in love with right now, so the sky’s the limit. Jetset Getset’s free, all-ages show at Toby Keith’s also serves as a benefit for Play It Forward, the local organization formed to help area musicians in their time of need (with medical, financial and other assistance). Proceeds from the sales of Saturday Night on Nov. 7 will be donated to the cause.

Here's Jetset Getset's video for the album's first single.

Click here for even more live music tonight in Greater Cincinnati.

<![CDATA[FREE DOWNLOAD: New Buffalo Killers Live Track]]>

Area Pscyh/Pop/Rock trio Buffalo Killers and vintage Rock/Soul/Pop master Brian Olive will be featured heavily on a new live album that includes tracks culled from performances at the 2012 Deep Blues Festival in Minnesota. The three-day, sold-out fest featured 26 bands, seven of which (including Olive and Buffalo Killers) record for the Alive NaturalSound imprint, which is releasing the live set.

Alive at the Deep Blues Fest is due Nov. 27 on CD, digitally and on "BBQ-sauce red colored vinyl" (the fest was presented by the owner of a BBQ joint near the Twin Cities). Brian Olive has the songs "Traveling" and "Bonelle" on the release; Buffalo Killers open the album with "River Water" and an epic version of "It's a Shame," which is available for free download. Give it a listen below and hit the download button for your very own copy.

Buffalo Killers headline the Ballroom at the Taft Theatre on Nov. 16 with Hollis Brown opening. Tickets are just $8 in advance. Click here for tickets and more details.

<![CDATA[LISTEN: Mitt Romney Made U a Mixtape]]> The PR folks working with covert comedic organization Team Coco sent over a press release this afternoon that also included "Mitt Romney's Fave Tunez," an Rdio-made, embed-ready playlist featuring the Mittster's favorite jamz.

Here's a snippet from the release:

During the heat of the current presidential election, you can always count on Team Coco to keep those LOLs and ROFLs alive and well. For its  weekly Rdio mixtape, Team Coco has procured the perfect songs for a Mitt Romney playlist. Featuring tracks such as Money, Money, Money, Polygamy Blues, I Gotsta Get Paid and many more, this playlist is sure to get anyone’s Romney on.
Enjoy! Well, most of you. Forty-seven % of you can go fuck yourselves find something productive to do for once.

UPDATED: The original post included a press release that was sent out unintentionally. The post has been corrected with the proper release quote.
<![CDATA[LISTEN: Extremely New Sounds from Old City]]> Veteran local Indie musician/songwriter/producer/label operator Sammy McKee, known for projects like Bitter Airplane, view-finder, Hyperstatic, fotos, Embers is Sammy, Kaptain and Charlston Entry, is back with a brand new solo project, Old City.

McKee has completed three EPs of new music so far, including Building Blocks, which he literally finished and posted just last night. An uniquely atmospheric, mood-shifting collection of ElectroIndiePsychPop that at times is reminiscent of Bowie's Berlin trilogy, the entrancing ambient tracks on Building Blocks are some of McKee's best to date.

It should be interesting to see how McKee pulls Old City off in a live setting. And tonight is your chance. Old City performs at The Avenue in Covington tonight with another pair of relative newcomers — Cincy Indie rockers The Ivorydales and Northern Kentucky Indie/Rock/Soul duo Young Colt. The free show kicks off at 9:30 p.m.

Here's Old City's hot-off-the-presses EP Building Blocks. Click here to check out some of McKee's earlier Old City recordings.

<![CDATA[WATCH: Cincy MC Santino Corleon's New "Tats"]]>

If you happened to have checked out this past Saturday's Beats Summer Concert Series event (the popular Hip Hop/Dance/DJ night presented by Self Diploma every Saturday this summer) on Fountain Square, you probably got a taste of the skills of Cincinnati native Santino Corleon, who performed right before headliner DJ Clockwork.

This week, you have another chance to sample Corleon's goods as the head-turning MC has released his latest track and accompanying music video, "Tats."

Corleon has already become a "name to watch" around the region. Upon returning to Cincinnati after a stint studying (both at college and in the Hip Hop community) in Brooklyn, Corleon stepped up his game and has been invited to perform with artists like Big Sean, Method Man and Redman, J. Cole and Gucci Mane (among other big-timers) and performing at various music festivals around the region. He's also built his buzz up by releasing several widely distributed mixtapes, including his most recent, The Hangover, hosted by DJ E-V (who works with Machine Gun Kelly and Mike Posner) and featured on Hip Hop/mixtape sites like, Live Mixtapes and LeakJones.

You can listen and download The Hangover and its predecessor — the more freestyle-oriented Where's the Love?right here for free through Corleon's site.

Corleon is also giving away free downloads of "Tats," which will be a part of his next full release, Keep the Change. Check the video (directed by Dan Gotti) below, then click here if you'd like your very own download. The track has a cool sparse/ambient quality, with some great, tricky beats and a bass-rumble that could wake the dead. (Note: The track is also pretty non-PC and probably NSFW for most of you reading this at your job, due to language. But if your boss is cool with it, so are we.)

<![CDATA[Buffalo Killers Debut New Track at Relix]]>

Powerhouse area power trio Buffalo Killers will have their fourth album, Dig. Sow. Love. Grow., released nationally by Alive Naturalsound Records on Aug. 7. The album will be released on CD and digitally, with a limited edition orange vinyl version available through Bomp! 

From the press release:

Dig. Sow. Love. Grow. is a heady synthesis of not only their own previous efforts, but also the many unique styles of music cultivated on American soil over the last five decades. From late '60s psychedelia, blues, Americana, garage rock and the folk-rock sounds that rolled out of Laurel Canyon in the early '70s like a sweet cloud of Acapulco Gold, brothers Zachary and Andrew Gabbard along with Joseph Sebaali have brought them all together to create an intoxicating album that sounds as timeless as it does remarkably fresh... and quite unlike anything else being released today.

Relix has your first listen to the album, a great heavy track called "Get It." The tune is available for free download through the site here.

<![CDATA[Music Tonight: DJ Funeral Fresh, Wooden Wand and More]]>

UPDATE: The DJ Funeral Fresh release party has been moved from Tonic to Mixx Ultra Lounge (1203 Main St., Over-the-Rhine).

Local DJ Funeral Fresh (formerly DJ Skinny Fresh) is hosting a release party in honor of his new "remix tape" tonight at Tonic on Fourth. Fresh has worked shows with everyone from Gucci Mane and Nicki Minaj to Soulja Boy and Jadakiss and he has been nominated for "Best Club DJ" at the Ohio Hip Hop Awards several years running. The new release project is called Da Party Life and Jay-Z features heavily throughout … and on the cover. (Lil Wayne, Beanie Sigel, Pharrell, 50 Cent and Foxy Brown also pop up in the mix.) Give it a listen at or download it for free here, then head to the event (billed as a new release/networking shindig) at 9 p.m. Admission is $5.

Here's the track "Bad Guy" from Fresh's new release:

• A pair of excellent, widely acclaimed and truly unique Indie/Avant/Anti-Folk artists (who are both quite prolific in their output) performs for free tonight in Northside at Mayday, starting at around 10 p.m. Wooden Wand is just one of the names songwriter James Jackson Toth performs under (it's also the project that's been most successful). Toth has collaborated with many artists and put music out on several different indie imprints, rarely falling in line with the rote expectations of a 21st century troubadour. Wooden Wand's vast discography includes cassette and CD-R releases, along with more standardly-issued albums and projects. Wooden Wand was lumped into the  "Freak Folk" category when that was a buzz word five or so years ago, but, like other artists put into that box, his musical curiosity has led him to a sound that's impossible to pinpoint with two words. Toth is currently touring behind the double-disc release of his Briarwood album, which features several raw, unreleased demos.

Here's the video for "Winter in Kentucky" from Briarwood:

Jeffrey Lewis is an illustrator who decided to write some songs while he was studying drawing and literature in college. Lewis — whose sound is a bit more eccentric and broader than Toth's, coming off like Beck had he stayed true to his avant grade roots — still successfully pursued his comic book artist dreams (writing and drawing the series Fuff, among other projects), but he keeps plenty busy as a touring musician these days. And he combines his passions whenever possible — during shows, he plays "illustrated songs" that are accompanied by one of his illustrations. Lewis and Toth came up in music around the same time, but their current tour is their first time reconnecting after several years.

MOTR Pub is also hosting a solid, free Indie show tonight featuring Cleveland Indie Pop up-and-comers Cloud Nothings and Brooklyn Electro/Dance/Pop duo Class Actress, which has had its music connected to various fashion happenings and glowing reviews. Founded and led by L.A. native Elizabeth Harper, Class Actress has been building buzz the past couple of years, earning comparisons to Depeche Mode, LCD Soundsystem, early Madonna and Human League. Read more about Cloud Nothings here and then check out the clip for Class Actress' song "Weekend" below. (CA opens tonight at around 10 p.m.).

River City Extension extends its tour into Bogart's tonight for an 8 p.m., all-ages show. Admission is $7. RCE is preparing to release its sophomore album, Don't Let the Sun Go Down On Your Anger, in early June on XOXO Records. The Indie Folk crew produced a trailer for the new album. Why, yes, we do have it to embed — look below!

River City Extension- Don't Let The Sun Go Down On Your Anger from THE VAMP GROUP on Vimeo.

Click here for more live music suggestions for tonight.

<![CDATA[Squeeze the Day for 1/6]]>

Music Tonight: Call it the New Wisp Jazz Club — iconic local Jazz venue the Blue Wisp reopens today at its new location at the corner of Race and Seventh streets, following its move over the past week from its old digs on Eighth Street. I’m psyched about the new location for selfish reasons — because it’s so close to CityBeat’s world headquarters (if you’re looking for a staffer after 5 p.m., check the new club’s bar area). Looking out the window by my cubicle, I can see that the hideously ugly sign from when the restaurant Bagpipes was in the space is still hanging up (for the record, purple, lime green and orange NEVER go together unless you are making pottery in a Southwestern desert). And The Blob that is Greater Cincinnati construction crews decided it was a good week to swarm Race Street … right in front of the new Wisp (leaving traffic down to just one lane). But the show must go on and the Wisp is on track to re-open today at 4:30 p.m. ---

The Wisp’s new location is larger and, according to a note on its website, will enable to club to "bring in more national Jazz acts to supplement our great local and regional talent.” The Wisp owners are also taking advantage of the kitchen area (Tommy Malone, who used to be at Mesh and Mt. Adams’ Fish House, is running things on the restaurant end) and one of the largest bar areas downtown. The restaurant won’t be ready for a month or two; it will also be several weeks before the larger performance area will open. (The club is offering a “VIP Membership” that includes various tiers of perks; check out the details here.)

But the bar area (and its live music bookings) is ready for business. The Ellen Rowe/Ingrid Jensen Quintet has the honor of being the first act to play the new Wisp. Showtime is 8:30 p.m. tonight ($10 cover). At 12:30 a.m., local bluesman Delbert Williams offers some late-night Blues, if you want to stop in for a nightcap and check out the new space (no cover charge).

UPDATE: The construction crew is gone! The old, ugly sign — still there.

• While we’re on the topic of new yet familiar clubs, tonight would be a good time to also check out the new venue occupying the space in Covington formerly home to popular music club The Mad Hatter. Bangarang’s of Covington took over the spot late last year and is offering regular shows in line with the bookings of the Hatter. And it’s still friendly to music lovers of all ages. Tonight, the club welcomes Scottsboro, Ala., Posi Punk crew Latin For Truth and Chicago Pop/Punk/Hardcore band So Many Ways. Doors open at 6 p.m. (The bands Overpower, The Creature and Against the Ropes also perform.) Below, check out the music video for the title track from Latin For Truth’s album Youth Crew Blues.

• Rohs Street Café in Clifton Heights is hosting a showcase for local artist-friendly, non-profit record label Best Friends Records. The show kicks off at 7 p.m. and is open to all ages. The $5 cover charge goes to help label operations. The lineup features Alex Evans and Vulgar Pigeons, Flowers For Judith, Luke Glaser and The White Bear Principle, Hot Monarchy, Vivid Youth, The Yugos, Come Here Watson, Plastic Inevitables and a reunion appearance by the band Starfox. Click here for more on the label. Below, check out Come Here Watson’s tune “Cute Little Mess” (you can download this and several CHW songs here).

• Win, Place or Show in Fairfield is giving local original music a chance tonight, welcoming Second Chance at Eden, Atlantis Becoming, Livid and Killer Star Effect to the venue at 9:30 p.m. Maybe you should take a chance on Win, Place or Show in return? Cover charge is just $5. Here’s a clip of Second Chance at Eden performing their song “The End” live.

Momentous Happenings in Music History for January 6
On this day in 1976, Peter Frampton’s life changed forever as his double live album, Frampton Comes Alive!, was first available in record shops (to our young readers, those are like the iTunes store only in real buildings). The album topped the charts for 10 weeks and remained on the album charts for a stunning 97 weeks, turning Frampton into a bonafide superstar.

Frampton (who lives in the Cincinnati area still, even after his recent divorce from his Cincinnatian wife) was just in the headlines after he became one of the highest profile music stars to file a lawsuit against his record label over unpaid digital royalties, a problem that is annoying a lot of musicians and will likely come to a boil in 2012.

But, on a more upbeat note, Frampton also recently made the news when he was “reunited” with his favorite guitar, a custom Gibson Les Paul that he thought was lost forever when the cargo plane carrying it crashed in 1980. According to The New York Times, the guitar was “saved” from the plane as it burned and sold on the Caribbean island of Curacao. He finally got his axe back after a two-year “negotiation” with its previous “owner.”

Born This Day: Musical movers and shakers born Jan. 6 include: Bluegrass legend (and Cincinnati regular, back in the day) Earl Scruggs (1924); Fabulous Thunderbirds vocalist Kim Wilson (1951); lesser-known Hank Williams offspring, Jett Williams (1953); lesser-known Young brother from AC/DC, rhythm guitarist Malcolm Young (1953); and Pink Floyd’s original driving creative force Syd Barrett (1946).

Barrett famously “disappeared” after leaving Floyd and releasing minimal solo work, hermitting away due to alleged substance abuse damage and other mental health issues. But he left behind some amazing Psychedelic Pop music that, while perhaps not as influential as what Pink Floyd became, is still inspiring young musicians to this day. In honor of what would have been Syd’s 66th birthday (he died in 2006 from cancer), enjoy one of my faves, “Late Night.”

<![CDATA[Preview Turntable Master Tobotius' New Album]]>

One of Cincinnati's all-time great turntablists, Tobotius (aka Tobe Donohue, member of DMC award-winning collective Animal Crackers), is preparing to release a solo album this February titled I, Tobot, but website The Untz posted the first leak from the record yesterday (click here for a free download). The track, "The Blox," is a collaboration with local Funk master, bassist Freekbass (aka Chris Sherman); the two local musicians have been working the national club circuit together as Freekbot. (They also collaborated on a modern "fight song" for Notre Dame's Fighting Irish called "We Are ND"; click here to view.) Check the hyped-up Tobotius/Freekbass track (fueled by a flurry of chaotic samples and scratches) below. ---

<![CDATA[Squeeze the Day for 11/17 ]]>

Music Tonight: Smooth, soulful Cincinnati-based vocalist Dion performs at The Greenwich in Walnut Hills. Dion got off to a fast start in his career; after graduating college, he went to a talent showcase hosted by renowned DJ Hi-Tek (another a hometown hero). Dion won the contest/audition and Hi-Tek began to use him on some of the high-profile projects he was working on. He and Tek collaborated on the track "Runnin'," from Game's first album, The Documentary, which brought him to the attention of Game's label, Aftermath, founded by the legendary Dr. Dre (he's also worked with Talib Kweli, Xzibit, 50 Cent and others). But the deal didn't pan out (maybe Dre got distracted by his headphones company). Dion has continued to perform and work on new music; he released a  mixtape this year (it came out in Japan on the Japan Entertainment Group label) called The Sample, which you can listen to here and download for free here. The gifted Neo Soul/R&B singer (if you dig D'Angelo and Musiq Soulchild, you'll likely love Dion) performs at 8 p.m. at The Greenwich tonight. Admission is just $3 (free appetizers included!). You can check out a fairly recent interview with Dion from the website here. Below, enjoy the track "Let It Go," from Hi-Tek's Hi-Teknology 2 album, featuring Tek, Dion and Talib. ---

Jeffrey Lewis (and his band the Junkyard) headlines a strong lineup at Northside club Mayday tonight. Fans of Moldy Peaches will appreciate the NYC native's upbeat, wide-and-wild-eyed, occasionally experimental, often fairly slanted Indie Folk Pop of Lewis' latest album, A Turn in the Dream-Songs (Lewis, in fact, collaborated on a release with the Peaches' Kimya Dawson last year). The new album came out early last month on his longtime label, Rough Trade, which he signed with in 2001. Lewis has been acclaimed far and wide thanks to his eclectic recorded catalog, strong songwriting and even better lyrics, not to mention relentless global touring jaunts. Rolling Stone, NME, NPR and Uncut have all heaped praise on the singer/songwriter, while Death Cab for Cutie's Ben Gibbard once said he was his favorite contemporary songwriter, and Pulp's Jarvis Cocker called him the best American lyricist working today. (Click below to hear and download Lewis' new tune, "Cult Boyfriend.") The free show also includes performances by creative, psychedelic one-man-band Emperor X (read a preview from this week's CityBeat here and check out the video for "‪A Violent Translation of the Concordia Headscarp‬," from EmpX's recent release, Western Teleport, on Bar/None Records) and intriguing local Indie crew The Yugos (give 'em a listen here). Showtime is 9 p.m.

Momentous Happenings in Music History for November 17
On this day in 1979, the Guinness Book of World Records announced that Swedish Pop group ABBA had officially become the biggest-selling group in the history of the world. The Beatles would eventually reclaim the record (it's estimated they've sold around a billion albums worldwide), but ABBA is still right up there, rivaled only by Queen and Led Zeppelin.

Weirdly enough, today is Guinness World Records Day, when everyone is encouraged to set a new record. (Read more here.) One of the records that has already been broken is reportedly the one for the most ABBA impersonators in one place — damn, that was the one I was going to break!

If Pop is art, then ABBA was a four-headed Andy Warhol. Here's a song that will now be stuck in your head for the rest of the day:

Born This Day: Musical movers and shakers sharing a Nov. 17 birthday include: Folk Pop heavyweight Gordon Lightfoot (1938); founding member of Folk/Rock trailblazers The Byrds, guitarist/songwriter Gene Clark (1944); club sensation turned Pop star turned reality show star RuPaul (1960); guitarist/singer in still-going-strong former-Teen Pop trio Hanson, Isaac Hanson (1980); and singer/songwriter/guitarist Jeff Buckley (1966).

It's hard to believe it has been almost 15 years since Buckley died, drowning while taking a swim in the Wolf River in Memphis on May 29, 1997. Buckley was waiting for bandmates to arrive in Tennessee, where he was working on his next album. That release came out posthumously — and incomplete — as My Sweetheart the Drunk.

Buckley sadly only got to finish one full-length album, 1994's Grace, which featured some great material, but was slightly overproduced. In concert, Buckley had a magical aura that unfortunately never was fully exhibited on his records. The closest was his first release as a solo artist, the EP Live at Sin-é, which featured Buckley performing all alone, just his spellbinding, otherworldly vocals and an electric guitar, in front of a tiny crowd in a tiny bar in NYC. Though only four-songs long, it was Buckley's most representative release. The expanded re-release was a gift from the heavens when Columbia put it out in 2003. Instead of the original, all-to-brief 26-and-a-half-minute running time (he had some long tunes!), the "Legacy Edition" came out as a two-and-a-half-hour treasure trove for Buckley's fans, featuring a few songs that showed up on Grace, but also a healthy handful of amazing cover tunes, including his interpretation of songs by Led Zeppelin, Billie Holiday, Nina Simone, Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan and, most famously, Leonard Cohen. Buckley's arrangement of "Hallelujah" (which also appeared on Grace) became the template for 99% of the versions that have been made over the past 15 years.

I was lucky enough to see Buckley in concert once, when he performed with the Grace band at the old Corryville club/laundromat Sudsy Malone's. The small club show only attracted about a handful of people (Grace had yet to break), but it remains one of my most memorable concert experiences. Not so much for the music (which was pretty great), but for a weird "moment" I had with Buckley.

I'd shown up to the venue a little late (I seem to remember it was snowing, but I spent so much time in that place, often drunk, jumbled facts are inevitable) and as I was paying the paltry cover charge at the front door — which was right where the stage was — I glanced towards the band performing. Buckley was staring at me. Locked in. I thought I was just being stupid/paranoid/perhaps-dead-and-going-to-heaven/hell, but as I walked to the bar, Buckley and my eyes stayed locked together. Finally, he broke into a smirk and I laughed at the same time. My best guess is that he was a little bored/disappointed at the small turnout and was just trying to entertain himself by fucking with me.

When Buckley passed away (under such unusual circumstances), I instantly remembered that 20 seconds or so at Sudsy's. There was something so transcendent and supernatural about Buckley's entire presence; our "moment" was fittingly weird and, especially in hindsight, more than a little spine-tingling, for reasons I'll probably never be able to put my fingers on. I don't believe in ghosts and gods, but when I think of Buckley, I think of him as some kind of angel. (Oddly enough, Buckley was apparently being a total Rock Star prima donna before and after that show.)

Jeff would have been 45 today.

<![CDATA[Foxy Shazam Signs with Relaunched I.R.S. Records]]>

Twenty years ago, one of Cincinnati's most successful bands — Over the Rhine — signed a record deal with I.R.S. Records, the label founded by Miles Copeland (brother of Police drummer Stewart) and home to key "Alternative" music releases by R.E.M., The English Beat, Concrete Blonde, The Go-Go's and many others. Now, I.R.S. is back as a working label and its first signing is, coincidentally, eclectic/eccentric Cincinnati rockers Foxy Shazam. The new I.R.S. Records is being relaunched as a joint venture between Crush Management (whose founders have guided the careers of Train and Gym Class Heroes) and EMI. Foxy Shazam released two albums through Warner Bros./Sire, which — along with extensive touring — helped them amass a big following in the States and overseas.

The first sounds from the band's I.R.S. debut are available now via the band's Facebook. Click here to listen to or download your own MP3 copy of the muscular, powerful track "I Like It." ---

Foxy's first release for I.R.S. — their fourth overall and, as of now, still untitled — is set to be made available this January. In the meantime, Foxy Shazam will be doing what they do — touring their brains out — over the months leading up to the release. The band kicks off more tour dates with pals Panic! at the Disco and Fall Out Boy's Patrick Stump in Reno, Nev., this Sunday, and they don't stop until that tour hits Bogart's on Nov. 6 (the last show on the tour). Two days after the Bogart's show, the band plays Liverpool, kicking of what is sure to be a massive tour with recently reconstituted cheese-rockers The Darkness. 

Still shocked this didn't make the cut for first single. Maybe they're saving it for the second single.

<![CDATA[MidPointer: Okkervil River Begins Tour ]]> Saturday, one of the more anticipated bands performing at this year’s MidPoint Music Festival, Okkervil River, jump back on the road for several weeks of dates around North America, picking up the tour for its latest album, the Jagjaguwar Records release I Am Very Far. Before they get to Cincinnati (the third-last tour stop), the band plays West Coast dates with The Decemberists, several other festivals and shows around the Midwest/South with buzzing Indie duo Wye Oak. As the Indie group begins its road to MPMF ’11, a new 7-inch and free MP3 have been issued. Click the arrow above to listen to “Your Past Life As a Blast” (free download here), recently issued as a 7-inch vinyl single. Below is a video clip from featuring a live performance of Okkervil outtake “I Guess We Lost.”---

Far From Home Ep#17 Okkervil River "I Guess We Lost" from Into The Woods on Vimeo.

For MidPoint, Okkervil River is scheduled to headline the “Dewey’s Pizza Main Stage” at Grammer’s (yes, despite the recent shutdown of the bar/restaurant, Grammer’s is still an MPMF venue) on Friday, Sept. 23. Click here to get your MidPoint three-day pass now, or come down to Fountain Square this evening for the free MidPoint Indie Summer concert to buy them in person and receive a considerable discount. (If any of the discounted three-day passes remain, next Friday’s Indie Summer show will be the last time you’ll be able to take advantage of the deal.)

<![CDATA[Free Full-Album Tributes for The Strokes, Nirvana]]>

This year, two big Rock albums that were among the best of their respective decades celebrate milestone anniversaries. On October 9, 2001, New York City band The Strokes helped define Indie Rock in the ’00s with their debut album, Is This It. About 10 years before that, on Sept. 24, 1991, Nirvana released its breakthrough album Nevermind, which reshaped the state of music at the time (and, some say, forever). Two music outlets have curated full-album cover versions of Is This It and Nevermind, featuring individual song contributions from a variety of contemporary artists. Both have also made the compilations available as a free download. ---

The blog Stereogum has a history of these sorts of album tributes, doing the same thing for Radiohead’s OK Computer and R.E.M.’s Automatic for the People. For STROKED: A Tribute to Is This It, Stereogum rounded up a mix of up-and-coming and established Indie acts to tackle The Strokes’ 10-year-old debut, including Peter Bjorn and John (title track), The Morning Benders (“Last Night”), Real Estate (“Barely Legal”) and Computer Magic (“Take It or Leave It”).

Click here to grab your own copy of STROKED.

When Is This It was released, there was some backlash over the amount of pre-hype The Strokes were receiving. The band never quite lived up to the buzz; since the debut, the group hasn’t come close to recapturing Is This It’s magic. For Nevermind, the opposite happened — no one expected much from the three skuzzy rockers from Seattle and their major-label debut (after just one full-length for indie label Sub Pop). But, of course, it exploded well beyond anyone’s dreams, pushing Michael Jackson off his perch atop the album charts and becoming so huge that artists from genres that were big pre-Nevermind (like Hair Metal) today claim Nirvana killed their careers.

Spin put together the Nevermind compilation, dubbed Newermind, which features several more recognizable names than Stereogum’s tribute. Newermind includes reworked versions of the classic album’s tracks by the likes of Surfer Blood (“Territorial Pissings”), Jeff the Brotherhood (“Something in the Way”), Amanda Palmer (“Polly”), Titus Andronicus (“Breed”) and two bands that were actually influences on Kurt Cobain's music — The Meat Puppets (“Smells Like Teen Spirit”) and The Vaselines (“Lithium”).

The album also features a version of “Drain You” by Cincinnati’s favorite wild-eyed, theatrical rockers Foxy Shazam. Bassist Daisy tells Spin he’s “the Nirvana guy” in the band and knew "Drain You" was the one for them immediately. As soon as the band settled on the song, he tells the mag, "we were getting drunk and jamming out on it."

To download Spin’s Newermind, the publication requires you enter your email address then send you a link. Click here to register for yours now.

<![CDATA[Squeeze the Day for 8/1]]>

Music Tonight: L.A.-based Electronic trio The Glitch Mob has capitalized on the strength and success of its Hip Hop/Dubstep/Electronica recordings — like last year’s acclaimed breakthrough LP, Drink the Sea — by touring fairly consistently. But, though the three are former DJs, a Glitch Mob show isn’t just a three-headed DJ set. That wouldn’t fly in a venue like Red Rocks in Colorado, but the Glitch Mob worked a packed house into a fervor there recently. The Mob is a live band, playing and controlling their instruments, be they electronic or otherwise.---

The current tour behind the new EP, We Can Make the World Stop, features three Tron-like “work stations” (production and light design come from the duo behind the stage setups for big tours by Daft Punk and Nine Inch Nails) which the members rotate through, stopping to play the needed instrument, be it electronic drums, a guitar or the trio’s trademark Lemur, small iPad-looking gizmos that allow the members mobility. (Click the arrow above to hear the track “Warrior Concerto” from the new EP or head here to download it.)

So if you ever wanted to see a dude rock an iPad-ish thing, or hear a live band play a real-time remix they did of another band’s song (like the Mob’s rewiring of The White Stripes’ “Seven Nation Army,” to name but one possibility), The Glitch Mob is your best bet. The group brings its current tour (which has sold out many dates so far) with Phantogram and Com Truise to Oakley’s 20th Century Theater for an 8 p.m. show. Tickets are $22.

• It’s the first day of August and Snoop Dogg is in town to perform tonight at Bogart’s. There’s a bad pun using “Drop It Like It’s Hot” in there, but, honestly, we’re too hot to think straight right now, so make up your own, we’ll provide the tunes (below) and we’ll call it an “interactive media experience.” The show is at 9 p.m. and tickets are $47.36 (including fees).

(Leave your suggestions/promote yourself or your favorites by telling everyone about your favorite music event recommendations for the day in the comments below.)

Momentous Happenings in Music History for Aug. 1

On Aug. 1, 1971, George Harrison and Ravi Shankar presented the double-header Concert for Bangladesh, an allstar benefit for refugees in the crumbled former East Pakistan, at New York’s Madison Square Garden. The concerts (one was at noon, the other at 7 p.m.) featured the hosts playing with big shots like Eric Clapton and Bob Dylan and set the noble trend of large-scale benefit concerts (from Live Aid to Live8), though the “jam session” set-up was given up for individual sets.

Born This Day: Aug. 1 babies include Grateful Dead’s Jerry Garcia (1942); Folk music pioneer Ramblin' Jack Elliott (1931); Def Leppard singer Joe Elliott, no relation (1959); rapper Coolio (1963); and legendary MC and lyricist Chuck Ridenhour, better know as the booming voice of Public Enemy, Chuck D (1960).

<![CDATA[Enjoy Lollapalooza 2011 … In Under An Hour! (AUDIO)]]>

Next weekend, the Lollapalooza music festival returns to Chicago for its 20th anniversary extravaganza. CityBeat will have some reporters in the field covering the event, but most of us don't have the money for such a costly road trip this year. Thankfully, you can have a sort of "virtual reality" audio experience of Lollapalooza without leaving your bed or sweating more than a boxer in the final round. And you can do it all in under an hour. ---The production-duo-turned-Electro-Pop act The KickDrums were widely acclaimed for the "mixtape" previews they made for the last two Coachella festivals, mashing together numerous festival participants' music into an entertaining, Girl Talk-like compilation. The duo decided to take on Lollapalooza this year. Head below to give Lollapalooza in 45 Minutes a listen and find out how to get your own copy for free.

The KickDrums Lollapalooza in 45 Minutes by The Kickdrums

<![CDATA[Neon Indian Tease New LP (AUDIO)]]>

Neon Indian is finally getting ready to release the much-anticipated follow-up to its 2009 breakthrough debut album, Psychic Chasms. The Texas Indie/Electronic band — a MidPoint Indie Summer Series "regular," playing packed shows at Fountain Square's free Friday night concerts this and last year — is dropping Era Extraña on Neon Indian mastermind Alan Palomo's (pictured) own Static Tongues imprint on Sept. 13. Want a sneak peak? Head below and click the widget to receive a link for a free download of the new album track, "Fallout."---

The only other music from Era to see the light of day have been the first two pieces of a three-part instrumental suite that will be spread throughout the forthcoming full-length. The music came out as the soundtrack to two short films, which were premiered via music site Gorilla Vs. Bear (and can viewed below). So far, only those first two parts — "Heart: Attack" and "Heart: Decay" — have come out, so keep your eyes peeled for a clip for the third installment, "Heart: Release."


NEON INDIAN - HEART : DECAY from on Vimeo.

Photo by Lars Larsen]]>
<![CDATA[NewNow: New Music For Week of 7/19]]>

New Music Releases Available Now: Promising, trippy Hip Hop/Dance newcomer Theophilus London has released his debut long-player, Timez Are Weird These Days. London — a native of Trinidad — isn’t your typical MC, as his music and this feature from The New York Times show. Spinner has a full stream of Timez here and you can get a sample of his unique style for your very own with this free download of the RAC Remix version of the track “Why Even Try,” courtesy of Mashable. Below is a wild clip for the song “Girls Girls $.”---

Quirk Pop kings They Might Be Giants are taking a break from their kids’ music career to return to the adult music world with Join Us, the duo’s 15th full-length release. And there are lots of ways to sample the album before you buy it. Spinner has the full release streaming (click here) and TMBG is giving away the track “Judy Is Your Viet Nam.” Click here for your own copy or click the arrow at the top of this post to give it a listen. The band also hosted a make-our-next-video contest for fans. Check out the winning entry/official clip (selected by judge John Hodgeman from The Daily Show, Mac ads and the hilarious podcast/judge show parody, Judge John Hodgeman) for the single “Can’t Keep Johnny Down” below. (TMBG plays Sept. 20 at Newport's Southgate House; get your advanced tickets here.)

Another new, cool and unusual Hip Hop album, Sole and the Skyrider Band’s Hello Cruel World, can be heard in its entirety at My Old Kentucky Blog here. Frontdude Sole was a cofounder of Anticon, the amazingly eccentric Art Rap label which also got off the ground with the help of Cincy-affiliated Alt/Indie/Hip Hop acts like Doseone and Why? Turntable Kitchen has a free download of the track “We Stay Eating” (featuring guest MC, Busdriver), as well as Sole's recipe for vegan tuna salad, here. And you can grab an MP3 of the collaboration with experimental Indie crew Xiu Xiu (an MPMF 2011 participant) at the Brooklyn Vegan blog here. Dig the album’s title track (and music video) below.

Also Out Now:

Big Talk —Big Talk

Brilliant Colors —Again and Again

Khatia Buniatishvili —Franz Liszt

Burlap To Cashmere — Burlap To Cashmere

John Butler Trio — Live At Red Rocks

Terri Lynne Carrington — The Mosaic Project

Cold — Superfiction

Crystal Antlers —Two-Way Mirror

Delicate Cutters — Some Creatures

Demonical — Death Infernal

DJ Khaled —We the Best Forever

Down to the Bone — The Main Ingredients

Fink — Perfect Darkness

The Greenery — Spit & Argue

Horse Meat Disco — Horse Meat Disco III

Carol Kleyn — Love Has Made Me Stronger

Kottonmouth Kings — Sunrise Sessions

Lostboy! — Lostboy!

Lost Sounds — Blac Static

George Lynch — Kill All Control

John McLaughlin & Friends — Abstract Logix Live 2010

Melda May — Mayhem

Tom Morello: The Nightwatchman — Union Town

Original Soundtrack —Captain America: The First Avenger

Rahsaan Patterson — Bieuphoria

Portugal.The Man — In the Mountain In The Cloud

REO Speedwagon — Hi Infidelity: 30th Anniversary Edition

David Rotherray — The Life of Birds

Tim Robbins and The Rogues Gallery Band — Tim Robbins And The Rogues Gallery Band

Rodrigo Y Gabriela — Live In France

Ricky Skaggs — Country Hits Bluegrass Style

Spiro — Lightbox

Strung Out — Top Contenders: The Best Of Strung Out

The Summer Set — Everything's Fine

3 Doors Down — Time Of My Life

311 — Universal Pulse

Toxic Holocaust — Conjure and Command

TV on the Radio — Chemical Peels (single)

Unwritten Law — Blue Room

Cedar Walton — The Bouncer

Wiley — 100% Publishing

Lawrence Zazzo — Lunarcy: Songs of Madness and the Moon