Live Review: Fruit Bats @ Union Craft Brewing — 11/23/19

FruitBats24 Fruit Bats rock Union Craft Brewing on Nov. 23, 2019. (Photo by David LaMason)

There’s a comfort to the Fruit Bats’ music. Eric D. Johnson writes songs that seem to glide from over the hills from the West Coast to this year’s fantastic Gold Past Life on the band’s new label, Merge Records.

Continue Reading

Live Review: Chris Knight @ City Winery — 11/22/19

A7302126 B&W
Chris Knight (Photo courtesy Thirty Tigers)

Slaughters, Kentucky native Chris Knight makes gritty, powerful country music. Eschewing the country pop of the Nashville machine, he records sparsely produced albums that draw the listener’s attention to his compelling lyrics. Live, he performs solo and acoustic, delivering the lyrics with fittingly gruff vocals, as he did at City Winery DC recently.

Continue Reading

Live Review: Clan of Xymox @ Union Stage — 11/21/19

Xymox41
Ronny Moorings fronts Clan of Xymox at Union Stage on Nov. 21, 2019. (Photo by Mickey McCarter)

I’m going to say it right out of the gate — Clan of Xymox deserve to be a much bigger act than they are.

As seen at DC’s Union Stage recently, frontman Ronny Moorings and company walk a straight line through buoyant synthpop — a bit more dark and distracted than their contemporaries in New Order and a bit less complicated than The Cure.

Continue Reading

Snapshots: Gaelic Storm @ The Birchmere – 11/21/19

GaelicStorm_Birchmere
Gaelic Storm on stage at The Birchmere, where they played to a sold-out audience, Nov. 21, 2019. (Photo by Ari Strauss)

Gaelic Storm breezed into town recently to perform in front of a sold-out crowd at The Birchmere. It was the band’s 41st appearance at the iconic Northern Virginia music since forming as a Santa Monica, California pub band in the mid-1990s.

Continue Reading

Live Review: The Low Anthem @ Jammin’ Java — 11/21/19

TLA+Dec+2017
The Low Anthem (Photo courtesy Blind Ambition Management)

Haunting. Spectral. These are a few words that describe the folk-Americana of The Low Anthem, who appeared at Jammin’ Java recently. Following a switch to the Joyful Noise label, TLA has released a limited-edition vinyl pressing of their 2008 album, Oh My God, Charlie Darwin. They played the entire record, described as a “very sciencey gospel” album, along with some newer material.

Continue Reading

Snapshots: Kim Petras @ The Fillmore Silver Spring — 11/20/19

Kim Petras @ The Fillmore, Silver Spring MD, 11/20/2019
Kim Petras performs at The Fillmore Silver Spring on Nov. 20, 2019. (Photo by Paivi Salonen)

Kim Petras visited The Fillmore Silver Spring on a second round of North American dates for her Clarity Tour, named for the album she released in June via BunHead. Since then, Kim released Turn Off the Light Vol. 2 in October as a follow-up to her first mixtape.

Continue Reading

Live Review: Stalley @ Smith Public Trust — 11/19/19

_AVA4031 Stalley performs at Smith Public Trust on Nov. 19, 2019. (Photo by @Waufflez – wauffleznotwaffles.com)

Stalley’s The Head Trip Tour made its DC stop at Smith Public Trust recently for an intimate show for a room full of long-time fans in support of his latest project, Reflection of Self: The Head Trip. Since his separation from Rick Ross’s Maybach Music Group in 2015-16, Stalley has been able to re-establish himself as an independent artist and started to accumulate his own roster of artists, with openers Gerald Walker and Life Dutchie being the first under his own Blue Collar Gang label.

Continue Reading