Selections by Alyssa Moody. Philip Chevalier, Stephanie Breijo, Svetlana Legetic and Christopher Naoum of Listen Local First
Look, it’s simple: Every week we’ll be bringing you all the information you can handle about the cool concerts to hit up in D.C. Don’t say we don’t love you. (p.s. BANDS/VENUES-looking to get your shows in front of us? Just head over to our AGENDA page, it is super easy to post your events there and it guarantees us seeing them).
From her website: If “esperanza” is the Spanish word for hope, then bassist, vocalist and composer Esperanza Spalding could not have been given a more fitting name at birth. Blessed with uncanny instrumental chops, a multi-lingual voice that is part angel and part siren, and a natural beauty that borders on the hypnotic, the prodigy-turned-pro might well be the hope for the future of jazz and instrumental music.
This stoner rock band from Souther California has been around since the mid ’80s. Take your places tonight at the Black Cat for sounds that have spent a long time maturing, but definitely haven’t grown up.
Sevendust recently landed their first ever number one on the billboard charts with “Decay,” the first single from this year’s Black Out the Sun, and are currently touring with fellow heavy metal-ers Coal Chamber. See these two with special guests at Rams Head tonight.
From their facebook: The Parlotones are known for their electric, polished stage performances delivered against the backdrop of their deftly crafted and darkly romantic lyrics. Their sound, described as alternative in their formative years has evolved substantially becoming more refined and focused with each album. ’ A World Next Door To Yours’ remained on the South African top 20 sales chart for more than twelve months and is currently South Africa’s biggest selling rock album of this decade. The album spurned seven radio singles, a very unique situation … The band released 3 of their own wines, each named after a song. “Giant Mistake” (red) “Push Me to the Floor” (white) and “We call this Dancing” (rose.)
Come early for opening act The Silver Liners, local pop rockers you shouldn’t miss.
From his website: A boyish-looking, sandy-haired charmer from Cambridge, MA, Adams fell in love with music as a kid. “My dad played drums in a rock band for 25 years and my mom sang back-up,” he says. “They loved music — everything from the Rolling Stones and the Beatles to Led Zeppelin and Canned Heat.” Adams began playing piano at age seven and learned to improvise at age 11. “Everything changed for me at that point because it was my type of thing,” he says. “I didn’t have to read sheet music of someone else’s song. I could come up with my own.”
NME writes: As the last, sumptuous chords of ‘He Would Have Laughed’ wisp and curl and fade, and the rest of the band troop off before the inevitable encore, Bradford remains rooted on the stage. “I can’t be bothered going,” he mutters. “I’m just going to stand here for a while.” And what follows is the single most awkward moment NME has ever witnessed at a gig – Bradford standing, blinking at the crowd, occasionally waving stiffly, his face contorted into a ‘Please god, let this be over’ rictus. He may be a god with his foot on the guitar pedal, but with both trainers planted firmly on the ground, he’s just an average, painfully awkward guy. And we love him all the more for it.
Solange @ 9:30 Club (M’Fing S O L D O U T)
If you’re anything like this blurb writer, you had “Losing You” on repeat throughout the entirety of November and December last year. Every time she comes to DC, she puts on an incredibly memorable show. You should definitely hed to 930 tomorrow night to check out her soulful vocal embellishments.
From the band’s website: Lush clusters of piano, a mysterious sound that might be something being unwrapped, or paper crushed for kindling, and A Church That Fits Our Needs, the second album by North Carolina group LOST IN THE TREES, is underway, announcing itself as a work of vaulting ambition, a cathedral built on loss and transformation.
You might know Ben Kenney as the bassist for Incubus. You might not have known that, prior to that gig, he was rocking a six string for the Roots. Today I learned…
- Andy Hawk and the Train Wreck Endings @ Iota Club
The Americana/blues/folk rocker songwriter has his CD release party at Iota Club.
This Nasheville, TN based singer songwriter likes to keep things humble on his Facebook page. This is his incredibly understated about section: I really enjoy writing songs and so far there have been a few people who’ve enjoyed listening to them. I hope to keep both sides of that going.
Thinking about checking out Moombahton Massive? Here’s a handy article about everything you should be excited for we ran back in February to help nudge you over the fence.
If you were a fan of Turn on the Bright Lights and Antics, and if you recognized, as you should have, that the drums on those albums did more than simply supply a beat, but actually aided the structure and mood significantly of each song they lent themselves to, then you should check out EmptyMansions. Sam Fogarino, long time drummer for Interpol, has taken to the songwriting game proper. Here’s him describing why he had no choice in the matter:
“Thus far I’ve spent more than half my life playing in many different rock bands, in return for nothing but the satisfaction of doing what I wanted to do, not what I was expected to do. For the past twelve years (and still counting) I’ve been fortunate enough to dedicate a vast amount of time and energy to playing drums in the band Interpol. In November 2011, at the completion of a fifteen month long tour supporting the band’s fourth, selftitled effort, I found that I had finally arrived at EmptyMansions. A long time coming; not without effort, but rather without force—This alone took years to figure out. I’d finally written some songs that, I not only liked, but that I had to sing myself. There was no choice in the matter. To do it any other way would have rendered the whole endeavor dishonest and pointless.”
-Sam Fogarino, Marfa, TX November 2012
From the band’s website: Judging from their name, Suicidal Tendencies were never afraid of a little controversy. Formed in Venice, CA, during the early ’80s, the group’s leader from the beginning was outspoken vocalist Mike Muir. The outfit specialized in vicious hardcore early on — building a huge following among skateboarders, lending a major hand in the creation of skatepunk — before turning their focus eventually to thrash metal.
Am I wrong, or has Sarah Silverman been around for, like, a million years (see Kramer’s girlfriend on Seinfeld) and not really aged at all? What’s the deal there? We’ll be finding out this Thursday at Warner Theater.
Flying Lotus @ 9:30 Club (M’Fing S O L D O U T)
BYT interviewed Flying Lotus this week in anticipation for this show. You should definitely check it out, and get your tickets … psych.
From the Pitchfork review of Goat’s most recent LP, World Music: Goat afford listeners the opportunity to press pause on self-obsessed information cycles, to push past the noise of minutiae, check into their wonderfully vague story, and check out with a wonderful record. Indeed, if certain components of Goat’s lore prove to be just that, they have, with World Music, created a vivid manifestation of the ideals they’ve espoused. “We’ve been taught since we were small to have an understanding of not only western bands, but of music from other parts of the world,” Johansson told The Quietus, a sentiment echoed when the band told another interviewer that its influences include birdsongs and food.
The EMI singer/songwriter is incredibly motivated in his pursuit of creating great music and wants nothing more than to do what he loves. He is a God fearing, river rat, beach bum that loves the outdoors and expresses this love through his soulful lyrical exchanges that breeze through the listener’s ears effortlessly. (via his Facebook page)
I know, crazy name, right? Don’t worry, they never really intended for you to hear about it. Too bad their music’s better than they thought it would be. “Formed in late 2009, Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. is the off-kilter title under which Detroit-area natives Joshua Epstein and Daniel Zott record, release and perform music. Initially beginning as an exercise in collaboration undertaken with very little intention of ever being publicly consumed, the band’s trajectory has been as unexpected as it has been unlikely. In just a few short years, fans have seen the project grow from basement recording project–to media curiosity–to an international touring ensemble widely recognized for their joy-fueled live offerings.” (via their Facebook page)
You could say that Sam Bush was born with bluegrass in his blood. Bush was raised in Kentucky — the bluegrass state — and as a kid in his hometown of Bowling Green he could watch the bluegrass TV shows coming out of Nashville, less than a hundred miles away. He attended the very first multiday bluegrass festival ever staged, in Roanoke, Virg., a few hours drive east, and listened to his dad’s collection of bluegrass records. (via Aspen Times, Sept. 16, 2011, found on his press page)
Billy Bragg, the other guy behind both volumes of Mermaid Avenue, Wilco’s Grammy winning take on previously unheard Woody Guthrie poems, will be coming to the Birchmere this Thursday to showcase his raw, unadulterated song craft.
With Teen Dream, this Baltimore dream pop duo spawned what seemed like an endless stream of copycats. For a while there, and you still hear it sometimes, people just couldn’t help wanting to sound like them. Go remember the time you and your friends were sure you had discovered gold when their album leaked.
Footwerk is a live hip-hop/neo-soul band based out of Washington DC. Fully established in 2012, the line up for this Merrifield Records group includes Melissa’s voice, Kyle’s rhymes, Teddi’s keys, Eric’s percussion, Fern’s bass and Josh’s drums. Though Footwerk’s musical focus is in hip-hop/neo-soul, this 6-piece act brings energy and intensity to every audience they play in front of with a sound that mixes hip-hop, rock, soul and jazz into an all new sound. (via band’s website)
DC native Indie Rockers The Mean Season are making it to the Velvet Lounge this Friday night. Do not miss their soft spoken, yet totally compelling style.
Boundaries—age, genre or otherwise—don’t hamper an artist like Sierra. She’s already earned considerable respect in the bluegrass world, the IBMA’s voting members having nominated her for no fewer than five awards over three years—there’s a good chance she’ll be the first woman to win the mandolin category. – – Jewly Hight, Nashville, Tennessee, January 2011 (via her website)
- The Sweater Set @ Strathmore Mansion
“Oh Visitor” Album release show at the Strathmore Mansion. The multi-instrumental folk rock/country/ jazz duo release their third studio album during a must -see event.
With its 6th release, Dig Deep, The Motet once again proves that it is a group committed to exploring and pushing the sonic envelope, while still remaining dedicated to the musical traditions that have defined their sound. A heavy-horned Afrobeat influence countered with a textural blanket of Electronica, this album showcases the talents and strengths of the cast of characters that drummer and producer Dave Watts has assembled. Keyboardist Joey Porter lays down the funk under the coursing melodies of saxophonist Dominic Lalli in pure Motet fashion, with the ever driving beats of Watts’ masterful rhythmic production pushing the music through sonic peaks and valleys that tantalize and invigorate listeners. If you’ve loved The Motet for years or are just tuning in, listen up. You won’t be disappointed. (via the band’s website)
He looks like I feel about the fact that he’s coming to DC this week. What is this even going to be? We’ll be there to give you the scoop. Stay tuned.
- Howlin Bends @ Iota Club
Alternative blues-pop DMV-based band Howlin Bends play Iotas for a howlin fun show.
- Zia Hassan and Don Kim @ Ebenezer’s Coffee House
Catch D.C. songwriters for some local acoustic crooning.
The British singer and guitarist has traveled a long way to this point, beginning in the 1970s as the frontman of proto-punk group The Soft Boys and continuing through a solo career that has produced hundreds of songs. He’s even appeared in a few films: Jonathan Demme showcased the singer in Storefront Hitchcock and gave him a cameo as a Russian operative in the 2004 verison of The Manchurian Candidate. (via NPR)
On April 27th, Monument is proud to present two things that are near and dear to our heart: A concert from a band we love, and a benefit for a organization we couldn’t be more passionate about. And to accommodate all of you weekend warriors, we’re making it happen on a Saturday night. Here’s all you need to know: The band is New Jersey rock ‘n’ roll powerhouse The Everymen, the cause is remarkable nonprofit Back on My Feet, and the venue is Beats. And, as an added bonus, up-and-coming indie rock / dream pop outfit The Sea Life will be performing as well.
What can we say about The Everymen? They’re one of our favorite acts and we’ve been trying to lure them down I-95 for a while now. The eight piece band makes high-flying, ramshackle rock in the grand tradition of Bruce Springsteen, The Replacements, and The Hold Steady. Check out singer Mike V’s musical guide to New Jersey, and get to know the band with this BYT interview from last summer.
BYT wrote about Everymen HERE and HERE
Pickwick @ DC9 (M’Fing S O L D O U T)
- 4th Annual Kingman Island Bluegrass and Folk Festival @ Kingman Island
Featured Musicians include: Hackensaw Boys, Bob Perilla & Big Hillbilly Bluegrass, Dead Men’s Hollow, Split String Soup, By and By, Hollertown, King Street Bluegrass with special short sets from Jonny Grave, Linsay Deming and Lea Morris. Other live music includes two busking stages hosting over 15 local artists and a live open bluegrass jam.
- Black Hills @ Artisphere
Black Hills play You Me Them and Everybody on the Big Screen at Artisphere!
- Washington Sound Museum XX @ Bloombars
Check out Washington Sound Museum XX with teatime and music with Christylez Bacon and Harpist Lilly Neil.
- B Side Shuffle, Emilia Festevaz and Aztec Sun @ Velvet Lounge
Three great local acts, one solid show. Come celebrate The B-Side Shuffle’s EP release.
Whether you know him from his days with the Smiths, or as the guitarist for Modest Mouse, or simply as Johnny Marr, this is a musician that you could stand to go see this Sunday.
Silo Halo, Love & Radiation, and Sansyou @ The Pinch
Be sure to catch locals Sansyou opening!
Dave Wakeling once told me that every great band only has three really good albums. And true to form, The Beat decided to call it quits after their third album, Special Beat Service. Of course, that was not the last we would hear from the Beat boys. (via band website)