This article was featured in RVAMag #27: Winter 2016. You can read all of issue #27 here or pick it up at local shops around RVA right now.
Egghunt Records recently announced Hatched, a year-long subscription service that will release four cassette EPs from new additions to the label’s growing roster. Subscription is limited to 50 slots with each subscriber receiving a cassette release, digital copy, and band-specific bonus item each quarter. Q1 of 2017 will see the release of a new EP from avant-garde pop artist Dazeases, followed by popular chill rock group Camp Howard in Q2, grainy pop trio Big Baby in Q3, and thundering grunge punk quartet Doll Baby in Q4. It’s an ambitious reach for the young label in both a business and musical sense, with many artists in town hoping for its success in order to win a chance in 2018’s line-up.
Former Egghunt member and current Matador jewel Lucy Dacus continues to debut new songs at her concerts across the country and here in town, fueling anticipation of her follow-up barely ten months removed from the release of her debut record. As she racks up accolade after accolade in the end-of-the-year retrospective for publications both small and large, expectations will be high for whatever comes next, but by the sounds of her new material so far, fans should expect something as gripping and moving as No Burden to follow.
Local label Cherub Records recently celebrated their 15th anniversary that was preceded by a monumental release spearheaded by Dave Watkins entitled The Colloquial Orchestra, and also accompanied by a 40 song compilation that celebrates the diversity of their roster over the years. The label is already eyeing 2017 too with an anticipated release from Hoax Hunters due out, which will serve as the follow-up to their 2014 inventive EP Clickbait, offering local fans plenty of reason to keep their eyes on Cherub moving forward.
Richmond has seen too many band break-ups in 2016 and sadly, more seem to be on the way in early 2017, but local fans shouldn’t overreact. Many of these bands, specifically one whose clever nod to shoegaze is lost on people, will be reimagined as new projects going forward, with at least three already recording material for debut records to be released in 2017.
A little over a year removed from his memorable stint on The Voice, Richmond musician Evan McKeel will be releasing his first record in over three years in 2017 entitled Brown Paper Bag. The first single, “Love Again,” recently premiered with its heart-wrenching lyrics and stunning vocals standing out proudly against a backdrop of sparse instrumentation. The album will be released under McKeel’s skinny-E alias, who will be using that name in and around town moving forward.
Expect plenty of benefit shows and releases in the first few months of 2017 as Richmond channels its frustration over the political landscape of our nation into productive outputs that will benefit organizations like ACLU, Forward Together, and Sister Song. The recent release Friends For Equality, organized by Fox Food Records and Spartan Jet-Plex, seems to be leading the way with its recent release, but many more are underway with artists in town yearning to have their voices heard and their causes furthered.
Words by RVA Magazine contributors