Category Archives: shows

Time Is Fire – Fetneh

If you’re the type to lose yourself dancing in a psychedelic haze, Time Is Fire have your ticket for a perfect Tuesday evening. The quartet of DC music veterans, hailing from Alma Tropicalia, Thievery Corporation and Multiflora Productions, release their 4 song self-titled debut EP with a show tonight at Bossa in Adams Morgan, one of the primary locations to see live music curated by TIF drummer Jim Thomson. Their first music video also dropped today, showing the band jamming on “Fetneh” while Sufi poet and Iranian daf player Kamyar Arsani sings and dances with a distinctive enormous fez. Grab the EP for free on Electric Cowbell’s SoundCloud page and make your way to Bossa tonight for the show!

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Exit Vehicles – Module

Indie rock band Exit Vehicles broke out of the usual DC music blogs with the premiere of their new video at ComicsDC, a blog devoted to the local graphic storytelling scene. Illustrator Matt Rasch of Michigan created this playful tale of a space-faring monkey for the lead single “Module” from Exit Vehicles’ new album Stages, which should please old school fans of The Dismemberment Plan. Exit Vehicles headlines a bill presented by euphonX at Iota on Saturday December 12th.


Drew Gibson – When The Vinyl Scrapes


Sometimes it feels like it snuck up on us, but music listening has changed so much in the last 15-20 years. Now with earbuds, podcasts, YouTube and paid streaming services, we curate and share songs and albums very personally, hearing music in bubbles that only get pierced by the ceremony of live shows.

On our DC music podcast I’ve been known to lightly slag off the recent vinyl and cassette resurgence as vastly inferior to the convenience and ubiquity of digital music. However, one thing I must concede, putting the needle on a record invites a communal listening of recorded music that’s often missing in 2015. Music’s power is amplified communally; just ask any club DJ.

Singer/songwriter Drew Gibson taps into this energy in “When The Vinyl Scrapes”, the latest single from the full length album 1532 from earlier this year. “Where do you go when that needle hits?” Drew sings, as music leads him through memories of family made poignant through loss. The songs on 1532 were written after the passing of Drew’s father back in 2012, and helped him cope with that change, reviewing family lore to inspire the songwriting process.

Many, I’d say most actually, musicians project an aura of “cool”. They rehearse a carefully crafted image of detachment and confidence designed to entice, but really puts distance between performer and fan. Drew Gibson is not at all like this. Drew is friendly, “warm”. Drew is unafraid to pour his emotions and family history into songs and describe the process as he goes. His easygoing folk troubadour style and quiet fingerpicking guitar sound make 1532 extremely approachable. Talk to Drew after a show and you’ll see what I mean.

For the video for “When The Vinyl Scrapes”, which we are honored and excited to premiere today, Drew returned to filmmaker Tobin Herringshaw, director of two videos from Drew’s prior album The Southern Draw. Tobin’s breathtaking new video uses the Nevada desert as canvas, creating long widescreen images that look like gelatin silver photographs from a hundred years ago. The languid pace of the video is a great fit for Drew’s contemplative song.

The Bethesda Blues & Jazz Supper Club hosts Drew Gibson on Sunday December 13th with support from occasional collaborator Devon Sproule. Get advance tickets now (and pick your seats out in advance too! Neat!).


Sara Curtin – Garden of Ghosts

“Garden of Ghosts”, singer Sara Curtin’s ode to the home of her alma mater, Michigan, stood out on her recent full length album Michigan Lilium as a song with lyrics to really dig into. Curtin recorded a live version of the song at Big Sky Recording in Ann Arbor, MI and even brought on Phredley Brown, music director for Selena Gomez and Bruno Mars, to lend a hand. The performance was thoughtfully captured on video, showing Sara’s versatility as a leader to whatever ensemble of musicians she gathers. Catch her next on Saturday December 5th at DC9 as part of the second annual all-DC curated music festival Magnificent Intentions.


The Max Levine Ensemble – My Valerian

It’s ambitious projects like the in-progress 3 part music video series from The Max Levine Ensmeble that make us feel extra good about our mission to get you to see more DC music videos. If you recall from the last video “Sun’s Early Rays”, Katie Alice Greer stole the doomsday device from the evil villain Sharad Satsangi and escaped. This time in “My Valerian” singer David Combs’s brain is swapped for the device, and trippiness ensues courtesy of animator Ben Levin, well known as a writer on Steven Universe and creator of his own series Doris & Mary Anne Are Breaking Out Of Prison, which I am totally binge watching next Saturday morning. The new album Backlash, Baby drops November 20th and TMLE celebrate with a record release show Sunday November 22nd at Black Cat. Expect doomsday devices.


RAtheMC – F.A.M.M.

One of DC’s most prominent female rappers RAtheMC is back on the scene with a new music video. Showcasing her love for her mother with a casual stroll around the National Harbor, “F.A.M.M.” features RA rapping about the most important things in her life, naturally Family and My Money. RA appears next with Thee H Collective supporting fellow DMV rapper Vito Brown at the Fillmore Silver Spring on Friday November 6th.


The Max Levine Ensemble – Sun’s Early Rays

Everyone is surely losing their minds over the December release of the new Star Wars flick, but did you know that Daniel Craig’s fourth turn as James Bond, the Sam Mendes directed Spectre, comes out in just a couple of weeks? DC pop-punks The Max Levine Ensemble capture some of that superspy hype in “Sun’s Early Rays”, the first single from their new album Backlash, Baby, their first since 2008. Starring Katie Alice Greer from Priests and Sharad Satsangi from Ilsa, this video looks a whole lot slicker than their self-proclaimed “snacks and arts and crafts budget” should suggest. If you’ve enjoyed their summer-long pre-release album “stream” on the Black Cat’s jukebox, you’d better pre-order the vinyl release now while you can, or wait for the record release show on Sunday November 22nd at the Black Cat backstage with Sundials and Maneuvers.


Soccer Team – Best Employed New Beau

We all know the adage of DC being a transient city. Bands, like the political and world-saving folks that come here, often leave eventually for greener or cheaper pastures. The energy of relatively young bands filling basements and posting free Bandcamp downloads is exciting, but the coexistence of that with grizzled vets putting out amazing new material is what makes DC a great music town right now. Along the lines of Dischord alum Chad Clark’s transcendent return of Beauty Pill earlier this year, now his former bandmate Ryan Nelson is poised to release the first Soccer Team album in a decade. Ryan and musical partner Melissa Quinley brought in drummer Dennis Kane and guitarist Jason Hutto to fill out the band for Real Lessons In Cynicism, out on Dischord October 27th. Don’t miss them this Sunday night at the always interesting Comet Ping Pong playing in between Polyon and Eternal Summers, but first watch this new music video for “Best Employed New Beau”.

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Teen Mom – When You Go (Waltz)

For years slacker-tinged indie rock band Teen Mom have graced stages all over DC, from Fort Reno to the Howard Theatre and many basements and DIY spaces between. It’s been two years since their EP Gilly filled our ears, but today the trio of Chris Kelly, Sean Dalby and Tom MacWright released their first full length album Groovy. Every good album release needs a music video, so Teen Mom gives us these visuals for the waltzable, dreamy single “When You Go”. Like their previous single “I Wanna Go Out”, one of the best DC videos of 2012, “When You Go” repurposes old footage, this time a bizarre 60s film featuring people dressed as monkeys riding bikes. Admittedly it gets a bit slow in the middle, but the end is worth sticking around for. Teen Mom plays live next on Friday October 23rd at WMUC in College Park with Expert Alterations and Slumberland Records’s Mercury Girls.


Br’er – Masking

There’s a strong association with The Downward Spiral-era Nine Inch Nails in Br’er‘s new video for “Masking”, their brand new album‘s title track. Industrial beats and filtered vocals accompany this dizzying video with twisted faces and a loose story about abduction and forced facial shaving with a razor and snowballs that’s kinda sorta NSFW. Ben Schurr leads the noise pop ensemble, which currently includes Erik Sleight of Stronger Sex and videographer/drummer Ben Usie, also of Pree. Celebrate the release of Br’er’s new album and see their intense live show tonight at the Pinch!


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