RVA Shows You Must See This Week: 1/27-2/2

by | Jan 27, 2016 | SHOW PICKS

Saturday, January 30, 8 PM
Citrus City One-Year Anniversary Party, feat. Vundabar, Camp Howard, Colin Thibodeauxx, Young Scum @ Strange Matter – $5

So last week got pretty crazy, huh? I don’t know about you, but I spent the past five days snowed in and having major cabin fever.

Saturday, January 30, 8 PM
Citrus City One-Year Anniversary Party, feat. Vundabar, Camp Howard, Colin Thibodeauxx, Young Scum @ Strange Matter – $5

So last week got pretty crazy, huh? I don’t know about you, but I spent the past five days snowed in and having major cabin fever. Finally got a solid dose of live music by making it out to the rescheduled Bad Girls Revue at Strange Matter on Monday night, but I missed a lot of shows in the interim–all of which got cancelled or postponed anyway. I’m really looking forward to returning to relative sanity and an active nightlife this week.

Fortunately, there’s a lot of cool stuff happening around town this week to bring us back to the life of going out and listening to awesome live music in proper fashion. Most notably, this Saturday night sees up-and-coming local label Citrus City celebrating its one year anniversary. Manny Lemus has been doing quite a bit over the past year to bring catchy, well-constructed indie pop from RVA and beyond to the masses. Now, to celebrate their accomplishments and herald further great things to come, they’re bringing us a fine bill of catchy, quirky pop bands!

Massachusetts wunderkinds Vundabar head up the bill with their catchy yet subtly weird tunes. These guys call to mind everything from early Weezer to Q And Not U or Vampire Weekend at various points, and it’s all tremendously entertaining. On the RVA side of things, we’ve got a set from Nic Perea’s catchy songwriting vehicle, Camp Howard, plus yet another exciting performance from Colin Thibodeauxx and his band of indie talents. Young Scum will start the evening off, and when you’ve got a band this great opening the show, you know the entire evening will be an embarrassment of musical riches.

Wednesday, January 27, 7 PM
Elvis Depressedly (Photo by RASweeting Photography), Cende, Cat Be Damned @ Gallery 5 – $10 (order tickets HERE)

There’s a long and noble tradition of bedroom artists emerging from random towns in the middle of nowhere armed with fully-formed lo-fi pop insta-classics, and you could definitely argue that Asheville’s Elvis Depressedly did that with last year’s excellent New Alhambra album, released (surprisingly enough) by pop-punk label Run For Cover Records. But not only does Elvis Depressedly leader Mat Cothran clearly have the chops to create some beautiful gems, he’s actually been honing them for the past half-decade, not only with previous Elvis Depressedly releases but also his work in Coma Cinema. It’s all bearing fruit now, though, and this is the perfect time for you to come find out what the buzz is about and open your ears to the murky pop genius of Elvis Depressedly–appearing tonight at Gallery 5!

If you’re worried that the murky pop moodiness of Elvis Depressedly will be too much for you, that you’ll find yourself sinking into deep despair, have no fear–Brooklyn’s Cende are also on the bill, and judging by the evidence of their brand new 5-song EP, these guys have upbeat pop hooks to spare, and then some! Sticking with song lengths generally below 90 seconds, these guys like to dash ’em off and move right along, so expect at least a dozen or so tunes that’ll all have you dancing around the room with a big grin on your face. The whole evening will kick off with a set from Cat Be Damned, who seem to float from one Mid-Atlantic city to another lately, but are touching down in Richmond at least for long enough to charm and enrapture you with their chiming guitars. Get down with it.

Thursday, January 28, 7 PM
Catriona Sturton, Dave Watkins, Samantha Pearl @ Gallery 5 – $6

Chances are that if you recognize the name Catriona Sturton, it’s due to her 90s past. Former bass player for Canadian post-grunge alt-rock band Plumtree, Sturton played on that band’s biggest hit, “Scott Pilgrim”–which, yes, was the inspiration for the comic/movie/video game/etc. But knowing that won’t really tell you too much about her solo work, most of which is based around Sturton’s extensive past as a blues player.

Sturton started out as a child prodigy on the harmonica, performing in Canadian blues bars when she was still in her teens. Her experience in Plumtree and her early-2000s Anglo-Japanese garage band, The Secret, led her to begin writing and singing her own songs. These days she tours with just her guitar and harmonica, doing solo shows that incorporate blues, folk, indie, and rock n’ roll into her fun, no-frills live performances. She’ll be joined on her Gallery 5 stop this week by RVA solo performers Dave Watkins, who combines ambient experimentation with folk traditionalism, and Samantha Pearl, who’ll demonstrate that her punk-rock guitar slinging in Ultra Flake is just one side of her multi-faceted talents.

Friday, January 29, 7 PM
Benefit For Addison Johnson, feat. Humungus, Vorator, Abandon Earth, Thoughts On Standby, Vomit Stain, Crucial Rip, Troops Of Doom @ McCormack’s Irish Pub – $5

Between 2 Beers Promotions are continuing with their quest to help raise up the local metal scene, and this time they’re doing it for a rather sobering cause. Addison Johnson, a local metal musician and friend to many in the community, was in a motorcycle accident recently, and ended up with serious hospital bills and the possibility of permanent disability. He’s going to need major physical therapy over the coming months and certainly can’t work while he’s laid up, so a whole ton of local metal bands and fans are stepping up to put together this benefit to help fund his convalescence. That’s a pretty cool thing, I must say. And they’ve gotten some majorly cool bands involved in the effort to help out, so even if you, like me, don’t personally know Addison, you can be sure of a damn good time if you head down to McCormack’s and help out this Friday night!

There’ll be more great local metal on this bill than we can possibly discuss in one paragraph, but let’s get to as much as possible, shall we? Humungus are your headliners, and these guys have been bringing their brew-loving, metal-blazing fun times to the RVA scene for quite a while. Vorator feature members from a bunch of great local metal bands coming together to give you some raw, primitive death-thrash for your headbanging pleasure. Abandon Earth have some technical death shred prowess to share with you all, and Thoughts On Standby will provide a mid-set palate cleanser with some ambient trip-hop sounds. Didn’t expect that, did ya? You’ll certainly expect the next two artists–Vomit Stain and Crucial Rip are the stalwart death metal mascots of the Between 2 Beers crowd, so by now you should know what’s up with these guys. And the whole evening will start with a special performance by Addison Johnson’s old band, Troops Of Doom, who are coming back together to honor their fallen friend. Various friends of Addison’s will step up to provide the vocals in his stead, which should be fun to watch. It sucks whenever someone ends up in this kind of position–medical care in this country is way too expensive and we’d all be in real trouble if we needed it as urgently as Addison does. So come out and show your support for someone in need, and have a headbanging good time!

Saturday, January 30, 8 PM
Dazeases, Partition, This Land Is Now Dead, Sports Bra @ Circle Thrift – $5

This show happening within the humble confines of Circle Thrift on Saturday night actually has a huge amount of diversity to offer, and should be a wonderful salve for the frustration of all those who weren’t able to make it out to the rescheduled Bad Girls Revue on Monday night. Dazeases, the ambient/hip-hop/indie/R&B hybrid project of powerhouse singer/producer London Perry, will be headlining the evening, and anyone who DID make it to Bad Girls Revue knows just how incredible Ms. Perry’s work really is. She showed up second-to-last on a bill full of punk rock bands and had the entire room fixated on the stage within half a song. Arresting, memorable, and always emotionally affecting, Dazeases is going to make sure you remember her. Come to Circle Thrift and find out what you’re missing–or if you aren’t missing it, come get your fix, because I’m sure you need more by now.

There are some other excellent bands that sound nothing like Dazeases on this bill as well. Partition is a punk/alt-rock power trio featuring female vocals and some excellent riffs. Plus they do a Mudhoney cover, so that’s always dope. This Land Is Now Dead is one of my favorite new bands to come out of this city over the past year, and if you haven’t yet encountered their emotionally-driven blend of metal rage and hardcore velocity, you need to make sure you fix that ASAP. Oh, and um, Sports Bra is playing as well. And yes, I am the bass player in this band, so if you want to wait until after our set is over to show up, I totally understand. I won’t tell you that my band is totally worth your time, but everyone else on this bill is so great that really, you can afford to sit through our set in order to get to them.

Sunday, January 31, 9 PM
Show Me The Body, Nu Depth, False Prpht, Get In The Car @ Strange Matter – $8 (order tickets here: https://showmethebody.eventbrite.com/)

I can’t see this band’s name without thinking of Tom Cruise yelling with Cuba Gooding Jr in Jerry Maguire, but of course, that’s “show me the money.” I have no idea if this band was inspired by that (let’s face it, kind of terrible) movie or not, but what I do know is that they’ve got a pretty unorthodox approach. For one thing, they’re a sort of power trio, only with electric banjo replacing guitar in the typical configuration of such bands. For another, they use their instrumentation not to create folk punk, as you might fear, but instead to generate a strange hybrid of hip hop and hardcore–but please don’t assume that means Rage Against The Machine. More like… MC Ride from Death Grips fronting FIDLAR? I dunno, something not terribly far removed from these clumsy analogies. It’s rad, that’s what you need to know.

Openers will consist of some far-flung and rather strange sounds; Nu Depth is certainly no stranger to RVA’s experimental noise scene, but who knows what he might bust out this time? Bizarre hip hop beats? Total noise weirdness? House music? Come find out–the answer may shock you! False Prpht (or Prophet? I’m not sure whether I’m supposed to use the vowels or not…) is a new weirdo rapper on the scene here in RVA, but don’t let that make you think he’s not talented–he’s got some sick rhymes and killer beats, which he tweaks through his unique persona in order to get your head nodding. If you can dig Show Me The Body, you’ll probably be feeling this. Opening up will be brand new postpunk crew Get In The Car, who feature current and former members of Hex Machine and League Of Space Pirates, among others (though maybe I’m supposed to be keeping that a secret… shh, don’t tell). Get stoked!

Monday, February 1, 5 PM
Ice Nine Kills, Affiance, More To Monroe, Come And Rest, Countermeasures, Acid Tide @ The Canal Club – $13 in advance/$15 day of show (order tickets HERE)

Haha OK here we go–it’s time for me to take you guys on another ride through Drew’s Continuing Obsession With Vaguely Embarrassing Metalcore. Well, I mean, maybe it’d be embarrassing for other people. I turned 40 last week, and that means I am OFFICIALLY too old to give a fuck what anyone else thinks of my musical tastes. And therefore, it is totally without shame that I inform all of you that… no seriously, this Ice Nine Kills band is kind of great, regardless of how easy it is to find their t-shirts at Hot Topic or whatever. When I checked them out, I expected them to be super-guttural deathcore, and as a result kinda boring and not worthy of my column. Instead, I found this strange progged-out melodic metalcore band full of overwrought breakdowns.

I’m sure you’re scratching your head in bemusement right now, and so was I at first, but seriously, these guys are kind of outstanding. Like, imagine if Chiodos and Periphery were engaged in a massive songwriting collaboration with Sworn In and Slipknot. Melodic riffs full of piano accents and catchy vocal hooks that switch on a dime into chugging, rumbling breakdowns full of guttural growls and screaming freakouts. Maybe I should be calling these guys the prog-emo System Of A Down, now that I think of it. And maybe that doesn’t appeal to everyone, but it definitely appeals to me! Therefore, I highly recommend that you come down to the Canal Club on Monday evening and check out this band up close and personal. The sets by half-a-dozen up-and-coming young metalcore bands you’ll be treated to during the lead-up to Ice Nine Kills’s performance will certainly serve to whet your appetite for the bizarre amazing-ness that awaits you.

Tuesday, February 2, 8 PM
REC Room presents: REC Beat Cypher & Open Aux Night @ The Camel – Free!

Here’s something different and quite cool from the Richmond Electronic Collective. This crew has been doing regular nights at The Camel recently (seems they tend to alternate Tuesdays with Satellite Syndicate, though I haven’t been paying close enough attention to be entirely sure, so don’t quote me on that), and they’ll be taking over The Camel this coming Tuesday night to present an evening of open challenges to local beatmakers. First will be the REC Beat Cypher, in which a crew of local producers will be given a set of samples at 8 PM and challenged to create a 2 minute song in one hour. At 9 PM, we’ll hear everyone’s results, and you’ll be able to judge for yourself who best rose to the challenge and got your feet moving. This should be fascinating to see and hear!

Then at 10 PM, the production version of an open mic night will kick off. REC Room’s Open Aux Night involves a variety of producers stepping up to play some original shit for an appreciative audience. There may be some hybrid situations in effect–someone might choose to go Squarepusher-style and accompany their electronic productions with some wild bass fury, or something like that–but electronics are the core of what will be on display this night, and you’ll get to hear, in 10-minute bursts, all varieties of genres that incorporate digital production. This will definitely constitute a crash course in what’s going on around town where electronic production is concerned, and should be both edifying and entertaining! Come out on a Tuesday night and be among the first in town to discover the next new hype.


Should I be posting about your show? Make sure I know it’s happening–email me: andrew@rvamag.com.

Marilyn Drew Necci

Marilyn Drew Necci

Former GayRVA editor-in-chief, RVA Magazine editor for print and web. Anxiety expert, proud trans woman, happily married.

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