WHAT SHOULD I BE DOING INSTEAD OF THIS?
 
 
by Mike Breen 11.20.2014 30 days ago
Posted In: Live Music, Local Music at 10:24 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Music Tonight: Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr., Empires and More

Besides sporting one of the best band names in recent memory, Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. also makes wildly endearing, monstrously melodic Indie/Electro Pop. Detroit’s Daniel Zott and Joshua Epstein started the project in 2009 as a home-recording venture, but a pair of EP releases the following year drew widespread attention, leading to a deal with Warner Bros. Records. The band released its debut full-length, It’s a Corporate World, in 2011 and followed it up last year with the acclaimed The Speed of Things. Paste named that album’s single, “Run,” one of the best songs of 2013 and also called them one of the Top 25 live acts around. At the start of fall, the band released a new single, “James Dean,” a great slice of chilled-out, slow-jam Pop. DEJJ plays Oakley’s 20th Century Theater tonight at 8 p.m. Tickets are $15. • Chicago Indie Rock foursome Empires, a 2014’s MidPoint Music Festival favorite, return to Cincy tonight for a 10 p.m. show at The Drinkery in Over-the-Rhine. Great Cincinnati band Pop Goes the Evil opens.Here’s Ben Walpole’s preview from CityBeat’s official MPMF guide: Empires enters MPMF 2014 building something close to its namesake this summer. It started with strong showings at Bonnaroo and the Hangout Music Festival, continued with a June appearance on a little program called the Late Show With David Letterman, followed by a well-received four-song EP – all building toward the band’s major-label debut, Orphan, released this week on Chop Shop/Island Records. The album was produced by John Congleton, who has worked with St. Vincent, The Black Angels and Explosions In The Sky, among others. You’ll Dig It If You Dig: A more up-tempo The National; an artsier The Killers; a less dramatic The Horrors. Here is the video for “How Does It Feel” from Empires’ most recent release, Orphan.    • Stellar Cincinnati singer/songwriter Kim Taylor (read CityBeat’s 2013 profile of Taylor here) headlines MOTR Pub in Over-the-Rhine tonight. Joining Taylor is Boston Indie/Americana Pop band The Grownup Noise. The band opens the free show at 10 p.m. The Grownup Noise debuted in 2007 with its inaugural release, a widely acclaimed self-titled full-length. The band recently returned with its three-years-in-the-making third LP, The Problem with Living in the Moment, which came out late last month.  The Boston Herald has this to say about the new release: Calling the Grownup Noise’s new work — “The Problem With Living in the Moment” — “an album” seems like a slight. Declaring the folk/rock blend a symphony is overkill, but the 11 tracks have such a orchestral sweep — swelling strings, rippling piano lines, a harmony of percussion arranged with meticulous detail. Let’s call it a suite. That seems to fit. • “Foot-Stompin’ ” Country-tinged Rock duo Sundy Best, which originated in tiny Prestonburg, Ky., (and is now based in Lexington) plays Newport’s Southgate House Revival tonight. Showtime is 9 p.m. and tickets are $15.The band’s bio describes its sound as “music that re-imagines timeless classic rock of the ‘70s and ‘80s – think the Eagles and the smart, whiskey-voiced lyrics of Tom Petty and Bob Seger.” Along with critical acclaim from outlets like Rolling Stone and The New York Times, the band has found success on the road and satellite radio. and has even scored buzz via attention from the CMT television network. The duo is gearing up for the Dec. 2 release of its latest album, Salvation City.   Here’s Sundy Best’s video for “Lotta Love,” a track from the album Bring Up the Sun.  For more live music events in Greater Cincinnati tonight, click here. 
 
 
by Mike Breen 10.30.2014 51 days ago
Posted In: Live Music, Local Music, Music Video at 09:56 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Music Tonight: Reflection Eternal, Nude Beach and more

The show by Trigger Hippy (featuring Joan Osborne and members of The Black Crowes) scheduled for tonight at Newport’s Southgate House Revival has been postponed due to a death in Osborne’s family. The band is hoping to reschedule the show soon. But there are plenty of other solid live music options in Greater Cincinnati tonight. • One of the best local Hip Hop shows in recent memory at at Rhinegeist in Over-the-Rhine. Reflection Eternal, renowned Cincinnati-based producer/artist Hi-Tek’s collaboration with legendary MC Talib Kweli, headlines the 8 p.m. concert, marking a rare appearance by the duo. The lineup also features Cincinnati heroes Mood, who took Cincy Hip Hop nationwide in the ’90s, Buggs Tha Rocka (who’s prepping a new album release for early December), Trademark Aaron (whose new video for “The Best,” featuring Easy Lantana, recently premiered on Vevo’s home page), Clockworkdj (Mac Miller’s official DJ), Valley High, Eddie Vaughn, Aida Chakra and many others. Tickets are $30 at the door while they last. • Dynamic, groovy and fun rockers Automagik are putting out a limited edition, Halloween-themed EP, Monster Party, for the holiday. The five-track collection features appropriate tracks taken from the group’s two albums. as well as the new title track. The band will have Monster Party available at its show Thursday night at Newport’s Thompson House (purchasers can “name their price”). The 8 p.m. event (with just a $5 cover) also features area acts Dark Colour, Motherfolk, Celestials and Young Colt, plus a live art performance by Kara Mitchell. Costumes are encouraged — those wearing the best ones will be rewarded with a piece of Mitchell’s artwork. Here’s one of the previously released Automagik tracks included on the Monster Party EP: <a href="http://automagikmusic.com/album/black-sundae">Black Sundae by Automagik</a>• Also playing Thompson House tonight (in one of the other rooms) is Jamaican Reggae fave Cocoa Tea. Tea’s fellow countryman Louie Culture also appears, along with soulful Folk/Soul/Jazz/Reggae singer Etana, Cincinnati’s The Cliftones and others. Showtime is 9:30 p.m. and tickets are $25. Cocoa Tea began making waves in the mid-’80s before busting out internationally in the ’90s. Tea scored some major U.S. press in 2008 when he released a song in support of the man who would become our country’s first African American President (in case you’re unclear to whom I’m referring, the song was called “Barack Obama”) and this year he released his 30th LP, Sunset in Negril, on his own Roaring Lion label.  • After adding to their already huge press kit at the recent CMJ festival in New York City, Cincy Trash Pop trio Tweens has been added to the bill at Over-the-Rhine’s The Drinkery tonight, making an already great show even better. The band is joining Brooklyn trio Nude Beach and excellent Cincinnati-based newcomers Leggy. Making infectious, classics-influenced Pop Rock, Nude Beach is touring behind its just released album 77. Here’s the album’s single “For You”:The free show kicks off at 9 p.m.• British rockers You Me at Six play Corryville’s Bogart’s tonight. Doors open at (of course) 6 p.m. The U.K.’s Young Guns and L.A.’s Stars in Stereo open. You Me at Six is beginning to make waves in the States after building a large and loyal fan base in the U.K. The band is currently touring behind its critically acclaimed latest, Cavalier Youth, a big hit in their homeland (it became the group’s first No. 1 album when released early this year). Here’s the video for You Me at Six’s “Room to Breathe”: Click here for even more live music events tonight in the Cincinnati area and feel free to plug any other shows going on tonight in the comments.
 
 
by Nick Grever 08.21.2014 121 days ago
Posted In: Live Music, Local Music, Reviews at 09:51 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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REVIEW: 500 Miles to Memphis’ ‘Stand There and Bleed’

Local rockers host listening party tonight for their finest effort to date

500 Miles to Memphis’ two most recent album releases are local classics that reside in two vastly different musical landscapes. Their 2007 album, Sunshine in a Shot Glass, offers 12 tracks of undiluted Country Punk. The album starts off with the band’s hit “All My Friends are Crazy” and doesn’t let up. The band’s followup, 2011’s We’ve Built Up to Nothing, took the Country Punk roots and drastically expanded on the concept. Influenced by The Beatles, the Cincinnati-based quintet added layer upon layer of instrumentation to craft an epic that radically expanded the groundwork laid in 2007.  Now, in 2014 the band is set to unleash Stand There and Bleed. With its latest release, 500 Miles to Memphis has pulled back and opted for a simpler, more straightforward group of songs. In doing so, the band has written its best album to date. The band will host a listening party for the new album tonight (Thursday) at The Drinkery in Over-the-Rhine. The album will be played in its entirety at 9 p.m., then the group will play an acoustic set at 10 p.m. The event is free. (The official release date for Stand There and Bleed has yet to be announced.) At its core, 500 Miles to Memphis has always been about vocalist/guitarist Ryan Malott telling the stories of his life. And with three years in between releases, Malott has plenty to talk about. Stand There and Bleed is Malott’s most personal output so far. We see a glimpse of tour life in “Medication,” the joys of marriage in “Takes Some Time” and the trials of addiction in “Easy Way Out.” Malott may have traded the bottle for coffee and a Playstation controller, but the struggle is ongoing. In fact, the best tracks on the album are the ones that document Malott’s missteps, but only because the album has so much hope, as well. There is a light at the end of the tunnel, and Malott is steadily working his way towards it. Joining Malott is bassist/vocalist Noah Sugarman, drummer Kevin Hogle, guitarist/vocalist Aaron Whalen and lap steel guitarist David Rhodes Brown. This all-star lineup compliments Malott’s lyrics expertly. Gone are We Built Up to Nothing’s more eccentric instrument choices; 500 stripped away the excess to more fully focus on what it had in house. The result is an album that’s more consistent and true to 500’s vision as a whole. Malott is influenced by Country and Punk Rock in equal measure and these influences come across stronger than ever on Bleed, with each member adding their own touch on the theme. Hogle’s drumming is still some of the best in town; his musical ear enables him to mold his style to each and heighten the mood of all. Brown’s steel playing on Stand There and Bleed keeps the more Punk-based tracks grounded in 500’s roots and elevates the Country tracks to another level with effortlessly delivered solos. Finally, Whalen and Sugarman’s guitar and bass inject energy throughout the record that reinforces Stand There and Bleed’s straightforward, powerful delivery. Malott’s vocal delivery has been honed and refined on Stand There and Bleed, as well. Malott is an unabashed fan of Green Day and comparisons to Billie Joe Armstrong in songs like “Bethel, OH” and “Abilene” are undeniable. Malott has also continued to inject large amounts of emotion into his vocals. He’s always been an expressive singer but the earnestness and pain in “You’ll Get Around” and “Alone” show a departure from We’ve Built Up to Nothing’s more polished vocals. Part of the recording process was breaking Malott of those good habits and getting him used to putting the feeling back into each take. What results is an album that’s a little rougher around the edges and much more emotionally captivating for the listener. 500 Miles to Memphis has been pushing its music forward for years, constantly hitting the road to share its take on Country Punk. The band has been virtuous to the genre and also bent it to an almost unrecognizable state. With Stand There and Bleed, the quintet has met somewhere in the middle. The band has trimmed the fat, focused on what each (incredibly talented) member brings to the table and built a record that is its most focused and honest to date.  The band has traveled way more than 500 miles to reach where they are now, but with albums like Stand There and Bleed carrying them, they have plenty more ahead of them.
 
 

Sol Cat

Tuesday • The Drinkery

0 Comments · Wednesday, April 16, 2014
On the final night of last year’s MidPoint Music Festival extravaganza, an old man dropped into The Drinkery to grab a beer, catch his breath and absorb a few minutes of Sol Cat’s soulful Psych/Dance/Pop, which had reminded him at least a little of Walk the Moon’s similarly adrenalized output. He’d expected an out-of-town show to be sparsely attended, which would theoretically allow him a seat at the bar and a chance to recharge for the remainder of the night.   
by Brian Baker 02.28.2014
Posted In: Live Music, Local Music, New Releases, Reviews at 09:53 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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REVIEW: Saturn Batteries’ ‘Real Far East’

An EP can serve several purposes — a stopgap release between full-length releases; fresh merch to offer at shows; a teaser for more material down the road; or an exploratory release to test the waters for a response to a new band or an existing band's new direction (among others).  In any event, whatever a band's reason might be for offering up a small dose of their material for reduced consumption, the inviolable rule of the EP is simple — always leave the listener wanting more. If you elicit even a modicum of boredom or disinterest in a spare handful of tracks, you're not likely to entice listeners to take a chance on a full-length or get them out to a show, which is, as stated, sort of the point. Luckily, no such lapse is even remotely evident on Real Far East, Saturn Batteries' second EP in just over a year. Since the Cincinnati bands formation in 2010, guitarist/vocalist/lyricist Brad Gibson — who's put in bass time with the likes of Charlie Hustle, Young Heirlooms and Walk the Moon — has presented his brainchild as a trio, quartet and quintet along the way, all in the service of Beatlesque Pop filtered through the New Wave aesthetic of the Police and XTC and adrenalized with a heart needle full of the Pixies' jittery satellite Rock.  On last year's Ever Been in Love? Gibson and the Batteries du jour hewed a little closer to the John Lennon/Frank Black strands of their DNA, but Real Far East finds the freshly minted foursome (Gibson, guitarist Brad Rutledge, drummer Justin Sheldon, bassist Archie Niebuhr) drifting more toward the Paul McCartney/Andy Partridge end of their gene pool. And while the Batteries soften the edges ever so subtly and polish their surface to a slightly more reflective shine on Real Far East, these refinements don't diminish the band's energetic charm in the least. One of the reasons for that is the Batteries have never forsaken one direction for another, preferring to incorporate differing elements into their foundational sound in an effective display of their diversity. The soulful "It's Not About the Money" and propulsive "Overtime" are both Pop gems that swing and swagger in a groove that isn't far removed from the benchmarks established by Walk the Moon in their march toward global domination. "You Really Live Twice" features previous members Rob Barnes and Rich Shivener, naturally hearkening back to the moody energy of Ever Been in Love? "Every Last Time" updates '60s/'70s AM Pop to the 21st century, while "Cherry Times" is a solid hybrid of the sweet and dissonant Pop that has characterized everything that Saturn Batteries has done well to this point in their history.  Real Far East shows that Saturn Batteries can have fun within their core Pop/Rock sound and clearly points the way toward a bright future for the quartet going forward.  Saturn Batteries celebrates the release of Real Far East tonight (Friday) at The Drinkery in Over-the-Rhine (click here for details). Below is the EP track “Every Last Time”; click the player or here to sample/download the entire release. <a href="http://saturnbatteries.bandcamp.com/album/real-far-east">Real Far East by Saturn Batteries</a>
 
 
by Mike Breen 10.24.2013
Posted In: Live Music, Local Music at 09:56 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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One More Girl on a Stage Festival Begins Tonight

Benefit for Making Strides Against Breast Cancer expands to three nights, two states

After taking a year off, the One More Girl on a Stage music festival returns starting tonight, bigger and better than ever. Founded by local musician Kelly Thomas (Kelly Thomas and the Fabulous Pickups, The Tammy Whynots), One More Girl (OMG) is striving to raise $10,000 for the American Cancer Society’s Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk.  Instead of hosting the festival at one venue, this year’s One More Girl benefit has expanded to six local venues in two cities over three nights. The lineup for One More Girl showcases female solo artists and bands with a female presence (mostly) from the Greater Cincinnati area. Many of them also happen to be some of the best acts in the region, playing a range of styles that includes everything from Hard Rock and Pop Rock to Bluegrass, Folk and many other variations on the Americana theme. Below are the lineups, links to venues and performers and a few samples from the some of the acts. One More Girl on a Stage kicks off tonight in Over-the-Rhine, with artists featured at four venues. There are no cover charges at any of the venues. MOTR Pub: 8:30 p.m. Good Night Noises Blood Orange from Good Night Noises on Myspace.9:30 p.m. A Juliet Bender 10:30 p.m. Sticky Honey 11:30 p.m. Darlene Japp’s Annex: 8 p.m. Charmed & Tarnished (a new project from Kelly Thomas and Randy Steffen) 9 p.m. The Missy Werner Band10 p.m. Salty Candy (a new project from The Fairmount Girls' Melissa Fairmount) 11 p.m. Magnolia Mountain Quartet 12 a.m. Heavy HingesNeons Unplugged: 7:30 p.m. Sami Riggs 8:30 p.m. Debra Randall and Chuck Keller 9:30 p.m. Carrie SampleLearn how to get your music noticed at ReverbNation.com10:30 p.m. Jenny Ward 11:30 p.m. Mia Carruthers The Drinkery: 7:30 p.m. Holly Spears BandSell music on Amazon at ReverbNation.com8:30 p.m.  Kerosene Alley 9:30  p.m. Wendy Oakley and The Posse 10:30  p.m. Stompin’ Revolvers 11:30 p.m. Buenos Crotches Learn how to make a free Electronic Press KitTomorrow, the OMG fest takes over the three stages at the Southgate House Revival in Newport, Ky. Tickets for Friday are available in advance for $15 here. Lounge:8:15 p.m.  Raison D’etre 9:15 p.m. Danielle Yockey 10:15 p.m. The Stories 11:15 p.m. RuccaFree Electronic Press Kits from ReverbNation.com12:15 a.m.  Sassy Molasses (The 5 Stages) Stage One: Denial & Isolation by Sassy MolassesRevival Room:7 p.m. Boone County Catawallers 8  p.m. Heather Hamlet 9  p.m. Jetlab 10 p.m. The Newbees 11 p.m. The Perfect Children 12 a.m. Chakras Sanctuary: 7:30 p.m. Ma Crow & The Lady Slippers 8:30 p.m. Shiny & The Spoon10 p.m. Jesse Thomas11 p.m. The Tammy WhyNots 12 a.m.  Veronica Grim and The Blue Ribbon Boys  Saturday’s OMG performances will be held on two stages at Newport’s York Street Café beginning at 7 p.m.  Admission is $10 or you can purchase a Friday/Saturday pass for $20 in advance, which will get you into both the Southgate shows and the ones at York Street (click here to purchase). Third Floor Art Gallery Stage: 7 p.m.  Kelly Routt 8 p.m. Chelisa Bailey 9 p.m. Wonky Tonk & the Holiday RamblersBlind Date (rough) by Wonky Tonk10 p.m. Carole WalkerLearn how to get your song on itunes at ReverbNation.com11 p.m. Hickory Robot Second Floor Stage: 7:30 p.m. The Dishes 8:30 p.m. Terminal Union 9:30 p.m. Houston & HoneyFree Electronic Press Kits from ReverbNation.com10:30 p.m. Alone at 3AMMidwest Mess by Alone At 3AM11:30 p.m. Kelly Thomas and The Fabulous Pickups Click here or here for even more information on all things One More Girl. 
 
 
by Jac Kern 03.13.2012
Posted In: Culture, Dating, Drinking, Events, Music at 12:55 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Your Tuesday To Do List

The instructors at The Art Institute of Ohio — Cincinnati talk the talk and walk the walk. In addition to teaching up-and-coming artists, they, too, create works of art on a regular basis. Tonight, check out their work during the college's 2012 Faculty Exhibition closing reception. The event runs from 6-8 p.m. in the Mason school's gallery. If you're interested in attending the Art Institute, stop by to check out the work and come back on March 31 when the school holds an open house.Bree from Hot Wheels Entertainment hosts karaoke at The Drinkery every Tuesday. Whether you're a karaoke god or just a spectator, swing by the OTR bar between 9 p.m.-2 a.m. for tunes and booze. Find details here.Cincinnati Playwrights Initiative (CPI) continues its New Voices Season of Staged Readings with Edge Walking. Written by Barbara Harkness and directed by Patrick Downey, Edge Walking follows two parents who are faced with a child claiming he is the reincarnation of their oldest son who died as a POW in Vietnam. The encounter brings up feelings of anger, loss and grief as each character must deal with the death. Tickets to the 7:30 p.m. performance are just $8 and can be purchased before the show at the Aronoff Center. For more information, call CPI's Kalman Kivkovich at 513-861-0004.The library's Northside branch hosts a series of poetry and short story readings showcasing local authors from 6-8 p.m. tonight. Lyrical Synaesthesia is a quarterly reading event designed to showcase the breadth of talent in Cincinnati and help foster a strong living literary tradition in the Queen City. Tonight's free event is hosted by Justin Patrick Moore and will feature readings from Matt Hart, Nick Barrows, Abiyah and Betsy Young. Hosted by Justin Patrick Moore. The first 20 to arrive will receive a free chapbook published by Aurore Press. 
Want to enjoy after-work drinks while learning about an important local cause? GLSEN (Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network) Greater Cincinnati presents a happy hour at Know Theatre from 5:30-7:30 p.m. tonight. Learn about GLSEN's mission to make schools safe for all students regardless of sexual orientation and gender identity or expression. Enjoy a cash bar and complimentary hors d’oeuvres while the organization will gives a brief presentation at 6:45 p.m. Learn more about GLSEN and how to become on ally here.Find ongoing art exhibits and other daily events here and follow our music blog for nightly live music offerings.
 
 

13 Big City Bars

0 Comments · Wednesday, February 29, 2012
Some of the more happening spots around town — some have outrageously creative drink menus, others have some of the freshest and most mouth-watering food around and others still encourage you to dance your ass off.  

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