Posted by: Necci – Oct 16, 2012
Saturday, October 20, 12-6pm.
Happy Camper Fest 2012 featuring Bon Airs, Silo Effect, Splendid Suns, The New Belgians, Downbeat Switch, The Rift @ Canal Walk – Canal Turning Basin (14th & Dock St) – Free + Donations/All Ages
This event comes out of nowhere to spearhead illuminating music along Richmond's Canal Walk. This is the kind of event that needs to be along the Canal Walk every day. The bands that make up this annual event’s lineup are a true who’s who of Richmond music elite. I want to shake the hands of Happy Camper Productions, as should you, for putting on this seminal showcase in 2012’s musical landscape.
Silo Effect brings infectious grooves of electronic space-rock that will have you para-sailing in the canal. Then there’s Splendid Suns; this underrated band will turn heads--oh, how they’ll turn heads--with their fantastic brand of funky folk. Brittany O’Neil’s vocals mesh with sheer elegance, so get up on the good foot. Next up is another high riser of daunting jazz, funk, jam material from everybody’s favorite band at Mekong on Monday nights, the New Belgians. There’s more? Holy East Belt Boulevards! The Rift are also part of this fancy, and if you haven’t heard their jamming alt-rock, then it’s time to dash down to the Canal Walk turning basin. The cream of the crop in this outdoor shindig is none other than Downbeat Switch. This band incorporates everything to doll up your senses, such as rock, funk, reggae, soul, and jam music. Is there a better frontwoman than Jenna Be? I doubt it. Mathews, Virginia represent!
Aside from the local music, there’ll also be a Canal Run & Walk, dog trick and costume contests, local artists/farmers, local businesses, local food /beverages, and much more. This festival is also a benefit for the Richmond SPCA and Communities In Schools of Richmond, and is the perfect festival to follow the folk festival. To witness these fabulous bands for free or a small, much-appreciated donation is a treat beyond all tricks, so get your ass down here.
Wednesday, October 17, 8 p.m.
Delta Rae, Long Arms, The Kindling Kind (pictured above) @ The National - $12.50/All Ages
Durham, North Carolina folk-rock band Delta Rae continues to grow, and the sizes of the venues they play continue to grow as well. The debate regarding this concert is around which band will steal the show. The siblings Hölljes, who make up the core of the Delta Rae, harmonize as good as any harmonizing band out there, and certainly are the favorites.
Yet I still look for the Richmond bands to come out firing on all pistons, and perhaps take this debate. Long Arms are the darlings of Richmond at the moment with their beautiful take on twang-pop. The Kindling Kind, led by the delicate vocals of Miriam Martin, is, I feel, the Delta Rae of tomorrow.
For deep rooted Americana with vocalists that satisfy the inner being, the National is the place to be tonight.
Thursday, October 18, 7 p.m.
Des Ark, The New Trust, Tideland, No Big @ Gallery 5 – $7/All Ages
Des Ark embarks on another tour, and Jackson Ward is once again in her sights. Des Ark, aka Aimée Argote, is a hardcore blend of beauty and vulgarity. The only thing that could make her show better would be to perform with a full band. Well guess what--tonight she will be backed by a full band. This night just became that much more powerful. With the political times we are currently in, expect Argote to be very spirited in her suggestive music. Expect everything tonight from Des Ark, from post-hardcore to beautiful melodies.
Similar to Des Ark, allow Northern California’s The New Trust to inspire you with their indie rock that packs a punch. Virginia’s Tideland delivers the garage/shoegaze sounds to fall into a dream with, as No Big, far from being large, can still hang musically with the best of them.
Thursday, October 18, 8 p.m.
Andere, Anduin, Radere, Stephen Vitiello + Molly Berg @ Ghostprint Gallery - $5/All Ages.
Let’s take it to the other side with experimentation in between experiments, shall we. The new experimental sound duo of Andere, comprised of Richmond’s Anduin and Boulder’s Radere, will take our breath away on this Jackson Ward evening. Both Anduin and Radere will do solo sets of the most intricate sounds your ears can follow. Then Andrere takes the floor with smoke-hued synth pads, found sound rhythmics, subtle guitars, and slow-paced drone evolution. I told you, this shit is serious.
Stephen Vitiello + Molly Berg are Stephen Vitiello, a Richmond based artist, professor, and musician; and Molly Berg, a Richmond singer-songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist. These two sound-smiths collaborate tonight to make thought-provoking variations on improvisational guitar loops, a clarinet, voices, whistling, and of course, the ever-so-important samples.
Friday, October 19, 10 p.m.
Whoarfrost, Promethean, Canary Oh Canary @ The Nile – Price at door/21+
Baltimore’s Whoarfrost is back in town, and they brought their spaced-out jazzy ambient noise definition with them. Get ready to have your brain spliced in 15 different directions. I wish this was considered elevator music, because every floor would be the thirteenth floor.
The two Richmond bands playing this parade on Laurel Street, Promeahean and Canary oh Canary, are the quintessential Friday night desserts at Virginia’s best Ethiopian restaurant. Fresh off a marathon recording session for their forthcoming LP--thank you Jesus--Canary oh Canary are ready to burn off the anxiety, and blow you away with their Bit-O-Honey music. Also, expect Canary oh Canary to once again prove that they are the best-smelling band in Richmond this fine evening. I’m not kidding.
Promeathean is flabbergasting with their proggy math-rock. I’m telling you, the Times Tables have never sounded better. Featuring Matt of Hellbear, Keith of Dumb Waiter, and Allan of This Time It's War, Promethean is the trio that sounds like a sonic episode of oblivion.
Friday, October 19, 6 p.m.
Positive Vibe Benefit featuring That Harp Guy @ Positive Vibe Café – Donations/All Ages
The harp can rock, oh yes it can. So can I get an amen? That Harp Guy, aka Gaffer, is a harpist from Boulder who turns a 26-string Dusty Strings Folk Harp into a miracle of therapeutic vibrations. Since 1989, That Harp Guy has left audiences spellbound by his masterful craft on the world’s most beautiful instrument. To take this chance to hear and see this man so up close and in such an intimate setting will be mandatory on this Saturday, where the leaves fall from the heavens.
Saturday, October 20, 8 p.m.
Byrd Theatre Benefit - A Night with the Mighty Wurlitzer featuring organist Cameron Carpenter @ The Byrd Theatre - $15-$75 (No tickets at Byrd Box Office) Tickets here - http://byrdtheatre2012.charityhappenings.org / All Ages
This event may be off the radar for local live music devotees, but for I’d say for all the wrong reasons. Cameron Carpenter is a master organist, and he is sure to make the mighty Wurlitzer at the Byrd his bitch. This man is scientific on the electric ivories and manipulates the sound to your waiting ears as you sit in one of the most historical theatres on Earth. Carpenter has parlayed his master’s degree from Julliard into becoming one of the most enduring, yet chance-taking, showmen of our era. I know most of Richmond wants to hear live mediocrity this Saturday, but do yourself a favor and go listen to Cameron Carpenter as he takes an old instrument and turns it into a futuristic apparatus of merriment. Carpenter single-handedly takes organs or Wurlitzers to an interpretation out of this galaxy. You have to hear and see it to believe it. Oh yeah, if there ever was a cool event to take the kids to, it is this one.
Sunday, October 21, 9 p.m.
Fire Bison, Unholy Thoughts @ Bandito’s – Free/21+
The greatest thing since Young MC performs in the Devil’s Triangle tonight. Yes, I’m talking about Fire Bison. It’s fitting that a band with the word fire in their name is playing in the Devil’s Triangle. Just in case you haven’t seen or heard of Fire Bison, you might want to kill yourself, because you are not worth it. If you consider yourself a connoisseur of quality sound, then check out Richmond’s own Fire Bison. This trio of fierce punky-garage rockers is self described as booze, sweat, and electricity. No argument here. I’d also add that Fire Bison is literally the most beautiful band that gets everybody shaking. A party band they are not. That’s an understatement, as Fire Bison is always above the party, and everyone dances on the ceiling.
Unholy Thoughts is the Boutros Boutros-Ghali of wild punk rock here in a city where punk rock is king. This band will flip those in attendance like pancakes in an hourglass. I think digging their sound is a given.
It's just another miracle of a free Sunday night show at Bandito’s, so let’s forget the crappy weekend we just had and make it out to this Marvelous Marvin Hagler. What? That doesn’t make any sense at all. Well, you not going to hear Fire Bison live doesn’t make any sense at all either.
Monday, October 22, 6 p.m.
The World Is A Beautiful Place & I Am No Longer Afraid To Die, Slingshot Dakota, Dial Up, Navi @ Strange Matter - $5/All Ages
Hey kids, drop the disappointed parents, books, and dead end jobs; it's Monday afternoon, and it’s time to get down with the serious rock and roll. The band with what might be the longest band name ever, The World Is A Beautiful Place & I Am No Longer Afraid To Die, is in town screaming about their anti suicidal feelings. This emo band takes emotional gusts of fury and raises the levels to bombastic proportions.
Slingshot Dakota never misses as this band is out of Bethlehem--no, not Jesus’ home, but Pennsylvania. You know out there they’re building time, but what they are also doing is providing the young showgoers quality indie rock. Richmond cousins of the frantic, Dial Up and Navi, open up this peach-peach.
Tuesday, October 23, 10 p.m.
Tombs, Fight Amp, 16, Bastard Sapling, Cough @ Strange Matter - $10/18+
Sludge and doom have found the perfect night to make love to violence under the necessary emotion. 929 W. Grace is the place for ear burning and séances that deliver powerful chords of loud cacophonous metal. Everyone will cry out ‘thank you’ as Tombs make their triumphant return to a city white people refer to as the River City. I won’t ever do that; what I will do is play Tombs’ new digital album, Path of Totality, brought to us by the great folks at Relapse. Yes, Brooklyn’s Tombs are travels towards destruction of the deserving kind. Whether you consider Tombs black metal, doom, post punk, or experimental metal, it’s all there for your wondering joyrides.
Fight Amp is sludge metal from Jersey. That should say it all right there. Jersey or not, this trio rolls out the punches and gets the hair flowing. Without hair? No need to worry--your skull is guaranteed to bleed. This is a listening that takes persistence, and it is well worth it. Fight Amp is touring in support of their new LP Birth Control, which, by the way, is a lightning rod for me wearing condoms from here on out.
16. No, not the age when girls get promiscuous, but the band name for a glorious sludge metal group out of California. Listen closely; you might just hear mud slides and earthquakes. Richmond’s Bastard Sapling and Tombs' Relapse labelmates, the ever so mesmerizing Cough, are also on this insane bill. Cover up your ears and grab your cocks, we’re all going in!
By John Lewis Morgan (onewayrichmond.com)