Music Park: River Whyless @ Grist Mill Park — 6/8/18

RiverWhyless14 River Whyless performs at Grist Mill Park in Alexandria, Virginia, on June 8, 2018. (Photo by Mark Caicedo)

If making an album has become a lost art, then River Whyless is doing its best to revive it. Celebrating the release of their new record, Kindness, A Rebel (Roll Call Records), the band performed on a warm summer evening Friday to a relaxed, picnicking crowd at Grist Mill Park near George Washington’s sprawling country estate, Mt. Vernon.

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Music Park: Horse Feathers @ Union Stage — 6/6/18

Horsefeathers01 Horse Feathers performs at Union Stage on June 6, 2018. (Photo by Mark Caicedo)

Horse Feathers recently brought its indie folk rock to Union Stage supporting its new album Appreciation in a concert that showcased founder and frontman Justin Ringle’s vocal and stage chops to an enthusiastic audience. Continue reading

Music Park: River Whyless @ Herndon Festival — 6/2/18

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River Whyless performs at the Herndon Festival on June 2, 2018. (Photo by Mark Caicedo)

By the time River Whyless took the stage at the Herndon Festival on Saturday, not a drop had fallen all day — and both band and audience were hopeful that it would stay that way for at least one more 45-minute set. The threat of storms made the day a risky proposition, but the rain, thankfully, held off.

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Music Park: This Will Destroy You @ Black Cat — 5/9/18

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This Will Destroy You performs at Black Cat on May 9, 2018. (Photo by Mark Caicedo)

Although I’m a late arrival to the post-rock party, I started following This Will Destroy You a couple years ago. With their sonic power, strong sense of melody and extreme technical abilities, this band’s music spoke to me in a way I’d never experienced before. So I jumped at the chance to see TWDY live at the Black Cat recently. As a bonus, to celebrate the 10-year anniversary of the release of the eponymously named first full length album, the band would be performing it and the 2006 EP, Young Mountain, in their entireties.

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Music Park: Ryley Walker @ Lincoln Theatre — 4/27/18

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Ryley Walker performs at the Lincoln Theater on April 27, 2018. (Photo by Mark Caicedo)

Accompanied by second guitarist Bill Mackay, Ryley Walker’s music is an expert amalgamation reminiscent of the Grateful Dead’s live “space” passages, Pat Metheny’s delicately picked jazz guitar, and today’s proliferation of post-rock bands. Although the songs largely “felt” like instrumentals due to the extended improvisational sections, Ryley’s occasional vocals owed much to the influence of Nick Drake and John Martyn during his performance opening for Calexico at the Lincoln Theatre on Friday.

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Music Park: Calexico @ Lincoln Theatre — 4/27/18

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Joey Burns fronts Calexico at the Lincoln Theatre on April 27, 2018. (Photo by Mark Caicedo)

Calexico’s Joey Burns is a gentleman. Aside from his easy-going banter between songs, his musical generosity toward his bandmates, and the stellar renditions of his compositions, he made sure to thank the adoring Lincoln Theater crowd repeatedly throughout his band’s performance on Friday, with a special shout-out to those parents of small children who went through considerable effort to be there. As we were to learn, the Calexico frontman knew firsthand of what he spoke.

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