Don’t Stay Home This Week 12/30

Monday 12/30:
The day before the excitement of 2020’s impending arrival, four bands play tonight at Galaxy Hut for “Happy This Year! Music Festival”. See Freddy Hall, Cartesian Theater, Sly Samudre and Drew Jenkinson starting at 9 PM.


Tuesday 12/31:
If you’re still without elaborate, expensive and overrated plans for New Year’s Eve, head to Evening Star Cafe in Del Ray for the 10th (!!) annual NYE show hosted by classic folk rock band The Beanstalk Library, along with very special guests Uptown Boys Choir. There’s no cover charge! You cannot go wrong.


Wednesday 1/01:
In association with the inaugural National Bell Festival that rings bells all over DC on New Year’s Day at 2 PM, Mr. Henry’s hosts a free and super-chill late afternoon show by Griefcat, the sparkly new duo of singer-songwriters Louisa Hall and Nardo Lilly.

Thursday 1/02:
Get a jump on your New Year’s resolution to see more live music this Thursday night with three kick-ass rock bands Thursday night at the Pie Shop. See Company Calls, Ménage À Garage and Venray, and ruin your New Year’s diet with delicious pie too.



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Don’t Stay Home This Weekend 12/27

Friday 12/27:
Ace #DCmusic photog Roxplosion promises “The Greatest Concert Ever” tonight at Slash Run with RVA band Shagwüf and three fine rock bands from our town, Sheila, More AM Than FM, and the final performance by beloved psychedelic punks Pagan Reagan. Pretty unmissable, we say.

Saturday 12/28:
Sanctuary DMV is a grassroots organization fighting to protect our undocumented sisters and brothers here in the DC area. Support their mission and see Dischord Records newest bands Saturday night at St. Stephen’s Church on Saturday night with a benefit show featuring The Messthetics, Hammered Hulls, Philly’s Rainbow Crimes, and a special set by Blacksmyths/Low Ways Quartet/Janel Leppin. The suggested donation is $10 but bring more if you can afford it.




Sunday 12/29:
Instead of live music, how about a movie? Director Mark Robinson first saw Butch Willis and the Rocks perform in April of 1985 as a high school student opening for seminal DC post-punk band No Trend. He became an instant life-long fan. At a basement show in 1988, he saw a microphone not being used, walked on stage uninvited and started dueting with Butch on the song “The Gardens Outside.” After meeting Butch that night, the two stayed in touch and Butch joined Mark’s Teen-Beat record label in 1989. In 2006, Mark had the idea to create a documentary film about Butch. He started interviewing Butch, Rocks band members, and other primary characters that next year. After years of collecting rare audio and video footage, the film was finally completed in 2019. See a screening of Amateur On Plastic Sunday evening at Songbyrd.

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Top 5 Videos of 2019 #1: Honest Haloway – Atonement

We meet again, Honest Haloway. The synthrock band fronted by Tim Kratzer, formerly of The Vita Ruins, landed in the top spot of our favorite #DCmusic videos of 2013 with the unforgettable thriller “Psycho Bitch”. After some time off to regroup and retool the lineup, Kratzer returned in 2019 with two new studio-recorded singles, “Atonement” and “Twisted Eye”, both with music videos directed by Kratzer’s partner, photographer Sara Nabizadeh. While “Psycho Bitch” had a quintessential mid-teens DC feel, “Atonement” takes us to the far-flung desert of Namibia with a mysterious narrative and breathtaking camerawork. Bravo to Honest Haloway for creating art like this that keeps us excited to share the music videos of DC for 8 years running.

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Don’t Stay Home This Weekend 12/20

Friday 12/20:
It’s queer DC indie pop night tonight at the Black Cat with sets from Lightmare, Lotion Princess and Born Dad. Sooooo many great show options tonight, but these three bands together are too good to miss.


Saturday 12/21:
College Park indie rock band with the snappy name ¿bruce take nap? celebrates the release of their new album nearing at AdMo’s SongByrd Saturday night along with Dali and Will Kobus.

Sunday 12/22:
Rock, pop-punk and modern ska collidein the mosh pit at the Pie Shop on Sunday night with the all-DC lineup of Accidents, The Can’t Evens and Mona Speaks Mountains.

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Top 5 Videos of 2019 #2: Lisa Frank & Rez Ekbatan – Whisper (Outputmessage Remix)

This video from electronic music producer Bernard Farley’s moniker Outputmessage is joyous and menacing and clubby and revelatory. What started as a remix for Lisa Frank and Rez Ektaban‘s debut single Whisper on their ROAMANCE label turned into this piece of edgy performance art at Grace Reformed Church. Here’s Farley’s own words about the importance of this video: “The song itself is already crazy, but to perform to it in a church meant a lot to me. The last time I performed in a church, I was closeted and afraid to be my true self. Now 22 years later, I’m in a completely different place as an artist where the main goal is to be the MOST myself. And so I couldn’t help but have some fun and be crazy and free on my own terms. My good friend and collaborator, Nigel Lyons, filmed the whole thing in one take! This one is not to be missed (look out for the reveal toward the end!)”.

The DIY warehouse party ROAM celebrates their 6th anniversary on New Year’s Eve with Outputmessage and Blinkhorn hold down the ambient room while DJ Lisa Frank, TonalTheory and others man the main decks. Grab yer tix now, prices go up at the door.

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Holiday Podcast for December 19th, 2019

It’s our annual holiday #DCmusic episode, spreading Tony’s special holiday cheer to the DMV and beyond!

Tracklisting:
Maryjo Mattea – War on Christmas [single]
Hiphopmcdougal – Party Up the Chimney [single]
Dennis Kane & Q – Christmas Will Be Just Another Lonely Day [DK & Q Xmas Music]
The Caribbean – Christmastime Is Here [single]
Sun Machines – Last Minute Christmas Song [single]
Luna Honey – I Wonder As I Wander [unreleased]
Amy K. Bormet – Give Me Love at Christmas Time [unreleased]

Subscribe to the Hometown Sounds podcast in Apple Podcasts, Overcast, Spotify, Google Play, SoundCloud, or your favorite podcast app! (and tell a friend too!)

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Top 5 Videos of 2019 #3: Oh He Dead – Show Me Love

We snarked when posting this lo-fi smartphone collage music video from indie soul band Oh He Dead last month. But the truth is, we adore the vid for “Show Me Love” because it shows the silly fun of being in a touring band with your friends. Oh He Dead aren’t afraid to get goofy, flip the bird A LOT and assemble it into a music video to share with the world. Plus, doesn’t hurt that the song is a straight up groove banger, either. Tix are going going going for Oh He Dead’s “Fancy” New Years Eve Celebration at Pearl Street Warehouse with Color Palette, so solidify those plans now.

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Top 5 Videos of 2019 #4: Dove Lady – Can’t Be Sad

“Can’t Be Sad”? In 2019 the ultra-creative duo of Dove Lady, Andrew Thawley and Jeremy Ray, decided to press pause and go on hiatus, so forgive us for feeling wistful and somber. Dove Lady’s two music videos, this one and 2017’s “Ferbalicious”, take us to a dream-like other dimension where things almost make sense but completely unravel upon close inspection. Director Bucky Illingworth prefaces the visual treats of the two gents with a strange sequence from a late 90s TV show called Bibleman. And the rest, including the low key coda involving chakras and tossing a tree stump, are up for you to internalize. Grab Dove Lady’s 2017 EP E for whatever price you like.

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Top 5 Videos of 2019 #5: Ex Hex – Rainbow Shiner

Welcome to the annual review of our favorite DC music videos of 2019. It’s so tough to pick, but these 5 videos really grabbed us and and reminded everyone how vibrant and relevant the music video art form remains.

Classic stadium rock band Ex Hex landed a spot on our best music videos list from 2014. In 2019 they roared back to stages all across the country with album It’s Real, five long years after their debut album Rips established the veteran trio of Mary Timony, Betsy Wright and Laura Harris. “Rainbow Shiner”, a mid-tempo song fronted by Wright, turns the sour subject of domestic abuse into a visual feast worthy of the song’s title by underground cartoonist and animator M. Wartella.

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Don’t Stay Home This Week 12/16

Monday 12/16:
The fine gents in post-rock band Ice Out will bring all their favorite holiday hits to Clarendon’s Galaxy Hut tonight, with Tyler Garing’s experimental shoegaze-y moniker Lizard Hands opening the show.

Tuesday 12/17:
Jam bandleader Gordon Sterling organizes the final open jam at Georgetown’s Gypsy Sally’s on Tuesday night. Raise a glass and bid a sad farewell to another DC music institution that brought folks of all stripes together.

Wednesday 12/18:
Rhizome’s Wednesday night lineup offers innovative takes on the American Primitive guitar style from Pittsburgh duo Pairdown, Andy McLeod from Staunton VA and Verses RecordsDoug Kallmeyer, performing a rare moniker-less solo set of pieces written for tenor guitar a decade ago on piccolo bass.


Thursday 12/19:
Listen Local First and Justin Trawick‘s The 9 Singer-Songwriter Showcase return for their 8th annual Holiday Extravaganza show at the Kennedy Center’s Millennium Stage. The free show at 6 PM on Thursday features Daphne Eckman, Tula Pisano, Steelosoul Music, Carly Harvey, Grover, Brassie, Abigail Furr, Sara Ghebremichael, and of course Mr. Trawick himself.


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