by Mike Breen
The countdown to the 11th annual MidPoint Music Festival reaches 12 days
MPMF news and musings: The official MidPoint Music Festival guide (on the streets of Greater Cincinnati until Wednesday, then resurfacing when it's MPMF-time) included a few feature stories this year about some of the festival's bonus features and additions. Read Leyla Shokoohe's interview with MPMF main-man, CityBeat's own Dan McCabe, about the fest's dedication to Over-the-Rhine and new MPMF venues Washington Park and the Emery Theatre here. And now, with the countdown down to just 12 days, here are our daily MidPoint Music Festival 2012 picks …BIG SHOTGrizzly Bear (Brooklyn, NY)Indie Art PopWhen this year’s initial MPMF performers were announced, eclectic Brooklyn crew Grizzly Bear was by far the name that seemed to most excite fest-goers. The group’s eccentric mix of artsy arrangements, organic psychedelia and boundless experimentalism has been earning the fans an ever-increasing and loyal fanbase since their lysergic debut release in 2004. Though continually adventurous, the band’s sound has grown and matured with the size of its following — 2009’s Veckatimest debuted at No. 8 on Billboard’s album chart and seemingly made every single music critic in the world’s “Top 10 Best” list that year. Expect an even bigger response from critics and fans when Grizzly Bear finally unleashes the much-anticipated new release, Shields, released just prior to the band’s MPMF stop. There’s a very good chance one of MPMF.12’s biggest acts will be sporting a Top 10 album by the time they get to Washington Park (an MPMF first). You'll Dig It If You Dig: Brian Wilson at his “off-the-meds” creative peak, listening to an “AM Gold” Soft Rock compilation and a Kraut Rock comp after drinking gallons of psychedelic mushroom tea.Grizzly Bear headlines the Washington Park stage on Friday, Sept. 28 at 8:30 p.m. The band performed the lead-off track from its new Shields album, "Sleeping Ute," on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon last night. Take a look/listen: SLEEPER PICKRich Aucoin (Halifax, CAN)Electro PopOn his enthralling 2011 full-length, We’re All Dying to Live, Canadian musician Rich Aucoin decided he’d invite Canada to record with him. As a result, the album features over 500 musicians, whose teaming on Aucoin’s dynamic, funky and craftily constructed tracks makes Dying to Live sound like the Electro Disco party of the century. But it’s not just a mindless exercise in dancefloor stereotypes — there’s depth and nuance to Aucoin’s songwriting and layering that might not be noticeable initially. Unlike a lot of Dance acts, Aucoin’s music isn’t disposable fun — it’s essential and commands repeated listens. Dig: ’80s Synth Pop, ’70s Disco, of Montreal, 4AD artists, Chic and Duran Duran in art school together.Rich Aucoin performs at Below Zero Lounge on Thursday, Sept. 27, at 11 p.m. Here is the hour-long film created to sync up with We're All Dying to Live (plus, of course, the full album for a free preview listen). Rich Aucoin - We're All Dying To Live :: Public Publication EP / Over The Top! LP from Sonic Entertainment Group on Vimeo.LOCAL LOCK PICKEclipse (Cincinnati, OH)Hip Hop/Jazz/Funk/FusionWhat happens when a bunch of studied Jazz musicians get funky with a couple of top-notch Hip Hop MCs? Eclipse happens. The Cincinnati septet has one of the best live shows in town, turning unsuspecting crowds into a sweaty mass of humanity thanks to their persistent groove and old-school Hip Hop party-starting. The band’s Around the World album was at the top of CityBeat’s list of the best local albums of 2011. With peerless MCs Jibri and Daddie Rich laying down rich verses and gripping hooks, the band roams around in the tight arrangements, touching on classic Funk, modern Alternative Rock, Progressive Rock, Latin rhythms and Jazz like some sort of dance-friendly aural collage. Dig: An epic Jurassic 5, The Roots, Miles Davis, James Brown and King Crimson mash-up.Eclipse performs Friday, Sept. 28, at 11 p.m. at the Blue Wisp Jazz Club. Here's a great video featurette put together by Chuck Land and Landman Productions, with audio recorded by Alex Lusht of Mind Ignition.Click here for full MPMF details via the official MidPoint site.
by Mike Breen
Popular Northside celebration returns to Hoffner Park for all-day, pre-Fourth blowout
Today, the free Northside Rock n’ Roll Carnival brings a little pre-Independence Day fun to Jacob Hoffner Park (at the corner of Hamilton and Blue Rock St.) in Northside. Conceived in 2005 by MOTR Pub’s Chris Schadler and put into action in 2006 by Schadler and Leslie Scott, the event is also a warm-up for one of the must-see parades of the summer, the eclectic, eccentric Northside 4th of July Parade, which makes its way down Hamilton Ave. starting at noon tomorrow. If you have not attended in the past, the “Carnival” in the event’s name is key, as organizers present “side-show” fun galore — everything from fire-breathers and sword swallowers to drag performances and burlesque. But live music is at the heart of the carnival and the assembled lineup this year once again features a great, diverse mix of groups from Greater Cincinnati, as well as a few nationally touring acts. Locals playing the Rock n’ Roll Carnival this year are Cletus Romp, Jake Speed and the Freddies, Eclipse, R. Ring, The Tillers and You, You’re Awesome. Headlining is Nashville’s Pujol; New York’s The Big Sleep and Nashville’s Turbo Fruits also perform.Here is the full lineup of event for today's Carnival:2:30 p.m. Cletus Romp 4 p.m. Jake Speed & the Freddies 5 p.m. Eclipse 6 p.m. R. Ring 7:10 p.m. The Tillers8:20 p.m. Turbo Fruits 9:05 p.m. Pickled Bros Side Show 9:40 p.m. You, You're Awesome 10:25 p.m. Incendium Fire Show 11 p.m. The Big Sleep 12:20 a.m. Pujol The event is open to revelers of all ages. For more details on the Northside Rock n’ Roll Carnival, click here.If you are in the mood for some indoor (read: ACed) music while you're at the Carnival, be sure to duck into Northside Tavern for the July 4th Eve Rock and Roll Riot. Also free, the Riot gets started at 9 p.m. with Downtown Boys. The rest of the lineup features The Cave Girls, TEMPLE, Ohio Knife and DAAP Girls. Click here for set times and links to check out all the performers beforehand.
0 Comments · Wednesday, September 15, 2010
If it's seemed like Cincy Folk trio The Tillers haven't been as omnipresent on the local club scene this summer, that's because the group has been spending a lot more time on the road since the release of its sophomore album, By the Signs. The band has been playing clubs and festivals throughout the Midwest and East Coast but come home Thursday to open for Ramblin' Jack Elliott at the Southgate House.
0 Comments · Wednesday, February 10, 2010
The problems in Haiti aren't going to end anytime soon, so thankfully the stream of local Haitian relief benefit concerts continues to flow over the next few weeks (and hopefully months). Here are several Haiti-related happenings this week.
0 Comments · Tuesday, December 8, 2009
It'll be pouring CD release parties this weekend, with five very disparate area bands celebrating the completion of their newest studio offerings: altrockers Seabird, Pop Rock band Lovely Crash, Soul Jazz outfit iolite, Cajun vets Lagniappe and Americana favorites Wild Carrot. Get all the details here.
Wade Baker's submersion into the local Jazz scene (and beyond) has made him a key part of it
0 Comments · Tuesday, December 8, 2009
Wade Baker recently nabbed his first CEA nomination in the Jazz category, but he's a pervasive presence throughout Cincinnati's music scene. In addition to playing trumpet with a rotating cast of Jazz luminaries in the Wade Baker Jazz Collaboration, he's toured with Hip Hop/Jazz/Jam locals Eclipse, provided bass for Blues cat Jon Justice for the past three years and has a regular gig with the veteran Blue Birds Big Band. And that's just a partial list.
Oct. 2 • Clifton Heights
0 Comments · Tuesday, September 29, 2009
Don't miss the Clifton Heights Music Festival, taking place Friday at four venues, all kicking off at 9 p.m. The lineup is stacked with quality entertainments from all genres, including The Frankl Project, Eagle to Squirrel, Eclipse, Ill Poetic, Chick Pimp Coke Dealer at a Bar and Wonky Tonk.
0 Comments · Wednesday, August 26, 2009
Two years ago, young singer/songwriter Nathan Holscher released his second album, 'Even the Hills,' a moody, mesmerizing slab of ethereal, transcendent Americana that helped make the relatively new Cincinnati resident a much buzzed-about local artist. Holscher has improved on that work with the new release, 'Hit the Ground,' and this time he's not alone, using the name Nathan Holscher & the Ohio 5 to give props to his current back-up band of ace local players.
0 Comments · Wednesday, May 20, 2009
If Greater Cincinnati is a conservative region filled with tight-ass people, the Cincy Fringe Festival is a laxative. It loosens us up, gets things moving a little better and smoother. Maybe the Fringe Festival is fiber in our otherwise meat-and-potatoes cultural diet. The annual event helps balance out the rest of our stodgy, by-the-book year.