Thursday, May 7, 2015

Middle of the Map Fest - Day #3

Middle of the Map Fest Day #3 featured another great lineup especially in the Kansas City music department.  The night started off with a bang at Riot Room on the patio where the Jorge Arana Trio was playing one of the loudest jazzy sets in recent memory.  Their music is fairly complex but still very accessible to the average music fan.  It's great to listen to how their songs progress from one place to the next.  Where the end up is often light years away from where they started.  It's a really refreshing sound.

Click for more Jorge Arana Trio

Listen to the Jorge Arana Trio on the Riot Room Patio

Inside the Riot Room, the Phantastics led by Kemet Coleman were tearing the roof off with a heavily 70's funk and soul inspired sound that had quite a crowd and dancing aplenty.  Coleman's presence on the mic and dance moves kept the crowd going while the band laid down solid funky sounds.

Click for more of the Phantastics

After the Phantastics finished up, we hiked over to the Westport Saloon to catch Lauren Anderson.  Lauren Anderson and her band are a Chicago-based bluesy 4-piece outfit featuring Lauren on guitar on vocals.  The soulful tunes with a solid rhythm section and great guitar work make for a really balanced, well-executed set.

Click for more of Lauren Anderson
Listen to Lauren Anderson performing "Shame"

Back over to the Riot Room, we caught Various Blonde.  The Joshua Allen led group features funk, rock, and dance tunes.  A couple times Joshua Allen joined the crowd while singing setting the stage perfectly for the next group, St Louis' Illphonics.

Click for more Various Blonde
Listen to a clip of Various Blonde at the Riot Room

The Illphonics are pretty easy to draw comparison's to early Roots albums but the band executes the hip-hop with a backing band very well. Socially conscious lyrics and neo-soul sounds create a show that's virtually impossible to stand still for.  But while it may be neo-soul inspired, the Illphonics are clearly their own band with something to say.

Click for more Illphonics
Listen to a track from the Illphonics set

Finishing up our night at the Westport Saloon, we caught Katy Guillen and the Girls playing a blues inspired set that is decidedly rocked out. All the members of the group have a great level of musicianship and instinct that allows them to really lock in a put on a show.  At this point in the night, the bar was packed, the crowd was moving and it the perfect time for an act like KG and the Girls.

Click for more of Katy Guillen and the Girls
Listen to Katy & the Girls performing "I Can't Live Here Anymore" and "Quiver"

Then there was the final day/night...check back for more on that later this week.

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Middle of the Map Festival 2015, Night Two at the Uptown Theater

The theme for night two of Middle of the Map was folk.  Sean Rowe opened up the evening with a great set of baritone vocals and guitar.  You could hear a pin drop during his set as his voice boomed through the Uptown Theater for the early crowd.  

Following Rowe was Kansas City's own Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear.  MW & MB have added drums and bass to the lineup to fill out the sound a bit and it's really great.  The core of the duets that garnered their initial success still maintain their character with a bit more bottom.  For the larger venue like the Uptown it really helps.  They've got a new album coming out in May that we're really looking forward to.

Click for more of Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear

AUDIO: Madisen Ward and Mama Bear performing "Silent Movies"


After Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear, Philadelphia folk rockers Strand of Oaks.  Strand of Oaks is a project put together by Indiana native Timothy Showalter.  He's really released a pretty significant amount of material in just the last five years.  Somehow we're just now finding out about him.  We dug it.  

Click for more of Strand of Oaks

AUDIO: Hear Strand of Oaks here

Closing the night and clearly the main attraction, Iron and Wine.

Click for more of Iron & Wine

Check back for more Middle of the Map coverage!

Monday, April 13, 2015

The Quivers at Harling's Upstairs

Caught the Quivers set a couple weeks back at Harling's Upstairs. They debuted several new tunes at the show and as soon as I get song titles I'll have those up for your listening pleasure. In the meantime check out "Keep Your Socks On" and the images below!


Listen to - The Quivers - Keep Your Sock...







The Quivers photo album here.

Monday, March 30, 2015

Archie Powell, The Noise FM and Me Like Bees at Record Bar

Recently at Record Bar, Me Like Bees returned from an unplugged East Coast stint before heading down to SXSW with the Noise FM and Archie Powell and the Exports.  Each band provided a set of blistering rock tunes.

We got all kinds of stuff for your eyes and earholes so let's get started:

Archie Powell and the Exports:


Click for more of Archie Powell & the Exports
This was our first Archie Powell experience and it was a damn good set to open the show.

Here's a bit of audio from Archie Powell:

Listen to - Archie Powell & the Expo...

The Noise FM:


Noise FM followed with a set heavy on tunes from last year's album "Attraction" and a cover of Billy Idol's "Dancing with Myself".  Their setlist was appropriately titled "Best Setlist Ever".

Click for more of The Noise FM
Here's some video  (More on the YouTube Channel)


Also, audio from the  Noise FM's set (More on the audio channel):

Listen to - The Noise FM - Crooked Smile


Me Like Bees:


Me Like Bees debuted a couple of new tracks which we've got here and played several tunes off "The Ides".

Click for more of Me Like Bees

Here's some video of Me Like Bees:


Audio  from the set including: one of the new tracks and Rolodex\Ra Ra, Etc. (More on the audio channel):

Listen to - Me Like Bees - New Track #1
Listen to - Me Like Bees - Rolodex, Ra, ...

Also, head over to the YouTube and Audio channels for more live audio/video!

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Not a Planet, Kangaroo Knife Fight and Teach Me Equals at Riot Room

Back on February 27, Not a Planet headlined a show with Florida duo Teach Me Equals and KC's own Aussie led rock group Kangaroo Knife Fight.  This was Not a Planet's final show before heading out on a southeastern US tour on their way to SXSW in Austin, TX. Not a Planet debuted several new tunes at the show and we got a couple of them for your listening pleasure if you follow the links below.

Teach Me Equals was also an interesting duo in that their instrumentation consisted of a cellist, and female vocalist who played violin and guitar.  Their sound was rounded out with a drum track.  It was pretty interesting.

Click for more Kangaroo Knife Fight

Click for more Teach Me Equals


Click for more Not a Planet


Audio from the show is here.



Monday, March 2, 2015

The Big Folk Alliance Post

We managed to get down to the opening night of the Folk Alliance Conference, dubbed "Planet Folk" at Westin Crown Center and Sheraton Hotels 2015 edition.  We've got audio tracks and images from the event.  There was a great turnout with many rooms full of musicians, music lovers and folk fanatics from all over the world in town to see everything we can bring to a music party.  It was a good showing KC!

The sheer volume of musicians and music acts from around the world performing showcases throughout the hotels, impromptu jam sessions and meetings were simply staggering.  Just trying to get a handle on everything that was happening at any given time was mind-boggling.  I hope next year the day gig will be a little less crazy so I can spend more time down there.  Looking forward to the next time Planet Folk's orbit crosses KC next February.

In the meantime, check out all we saw:

Click here for audio from several performances including: The Latenight Callers, Grisly Hand, Dollar, Fox, Rural Grit, Victor & Penny, Schwervon!

Click any image for the rest of the slideshow








Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Making Movies and Allyu at Record Bar on Valentine's Day

On Valentine's day at Record Bar, Making Movies performed to a sold out crowd featuring songs spanning the band's entire catalog. The set featured two new tracks and a couple covers in addition to Making Movies originals.  Recently returning from a six-week long stint on the west coast, the band debuted new material and joined openers Allyu, a latin folk ensemble, during the opening set.  Allyu would join Making Movies during their set to perform an acoustic number.

Here's audio, video and images of the show:

Click for more Making Movies and Allyu






Audio from the show is here.











Thursday, February 12, 2015

The New Riddim Second Sight Release Party with the Uncouth

Friday night at Vandals, the former Black and Gold Tavern under new ownership, the New Riddim, had a release gig for their 2nd album "Second Sight".  Opening for New Riddim were local punk rockers the Uncouth.

This week, in addition to pics, we've got video and audio tracks from the show.  Hopefully, this will be a regular feature on the blog.

Click to see more of the Uncouth



Upload Music - Listen To - The Uncouth - If The Kids Ar...



Click for more New Riddim



Listen to - New Riddim - One Way Street
Click the YouTube Channel and Audio Channel links at the top for more from the show!


Thursday, February 5, 2015

Midcoast Takeover: The Latenight Callers, The Philistines, The Sluts

Down at the Record Bar, we caught the second of three Midcoast Takeover fundraisers.  We saw three sets featuring:  The Latenight Callers, the Philistines, and the Sluts.  It was a solid night of rockin tunes for a great cause.  The event is helping to send something like 80 artists and bands from the KC area to Austin for a showcase during SXSW.  Check it out:

Click to see more of the Latenight Callers


Click to see more of the Philistines


Click for more Sluts