Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Insane Clown Posse goes old school with record tour, stops in Spokane tonight

Posted By on Tue, May 5, 2015 at 11:15 AM

Insane Clown Posse members Shaggy 2 Dope, left, and Violent J hit record stores across the nation for the next month promoting their new album.
  • Insane Clown Posse members Shaggy 2 Dope, left, and Violent J hit record stores across the nation for the next month promoting their new album.

Break out the face paint!

Tonight, the Detroit-based horrorcore duo Insane Clown Posse come through town as part of their "The Marvelous Missing Link’s Traveling In-Store Insanity Tour.” Yes, the juggalo/juggalette favorites head to the Spokane Valley Hasting’s (15312 E. Sprague Ave.) in honor of their brand new album release The Marvelous Missing Link (Lost). And they won’t perform at all.

They’ll start signing things, anything you want, at 6 pm. Expect a DJ spinning ICP tunes and exclusive merchandise.

We caught up with Shaggy 2 Dope (born Joseph "Joey" Utsler) while at a tour stop in Sioux Falls, South Dakota (“a lovely sunny and warm day,” he says). He discussed the decision to do an album signing tour, his favorite Faygo flavor and why people should attend the Gathering of the Juggalos.

INLANDER: Do artists still do in-store album tours? How did you decide to do that?
SHAGGY 2 DOPE: I don’t know, obviously some people because we are. We haven’t done it in so many years, though, and we thought: Let’s connect with the juggalos, connect with people. It gets really emotional and you get emotional with them. Having to go through that every day is a rough ride. Our music just changes people. People come up and tell us they were contemplating suicide and then they listened to our music and didn’t, and that’s tough. But the tons of positivity that comes with it equals it out, it’s a reason why we do this. We’re here to kick it with the everyday average Joe.

What kinds of things do you like to sign for fans?
There’s stuff that’s really hard to sign. Especially the tank tops and the hats, those are hard to sign, and if it’s raining, it doesn’t work. We have things to sign and pass out, too, though. Everyone gets something.

What’s it like not performing at all out on the road?
It’s weird being on the road not doing shows. We’ll go back to the hotel and then it feels like we should be doing a show afterward. When you’ve been on the road for so many years, the tour bus becomes a ship of doom. You get bored. You look forward to doing the show. We’re doing a lot of chilling out and watching movies. We’re definitely not out partying every night — we’re not as young as we used to be.

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Friday, May 1, 2015

THIS WEEKEND IN MUSIC: Fusion Music Festival, jazz galore and Over Sea Under Stone CD release

Posted By on Fri, May 1, 2015 at 3:38 PM


In an ocean of rock vocalists emulating far superior artists, T.J. McMillan sings in a way that easily lasers through his band’s wall of sound. His pure but gritty vocals pair well with Over Sea Under Stone’s style of classic rock with sludgy metal undertones. Guitars are quick to wail and the drums offer a good base for anyone trying to get in a headbanging session. Formed in 2013, the local act has crafted a set of catchy, energetic tunes soon to be released on their first EP coming out this weekend and celebrated at the Big Dipper at 7:30 pm tonight. The all-ages show is $5.

The Alliance is a medieval-themed rock band. They play all original music and perform in costume. Seriously. Tonight, they bring their intricate stage show (complete with sword fighting) to the Knitting Factory at 8 pm. Opening acts include rockers Helldorado, Thirion X and Free the Jester.

The Spokane Falls Community College is back tonight after a four-year absence. Featuring trumpet player Brian Lynch, singer Kathy Kosins and violist Eyvind Kang, the public concert starts at 7:30 pm and is $15 for non-students. Check out all of the details in this week’s music story.

The Fusion Music Festival is an all-day event converging the worlds of the Hop! and Pinnacle Northwest. One $12 (if you buy before day of) gets you into both venues. The list of local bands is enormous and eclectic and includes the Broken Thumbs, North Fork, Banish the Echo, Aardvark, Flying Mammals, Lavoy, the Finns and more. The show starts at noon.

Saturday, the jazz continues with a performance by the Hot Club of Spokane, a group of local jazz/swing/blues musicians, performing at the Bing Crosby Theater for their CD release party. The album includes lesser-known songs performed by Bing Crosby and his hometown jazz cohorts Al Rinker and Mildred Bailey (the show actually features those artists' family members). Cost is $12 and starts at 1 pm.

Bloomsday isn’t just about the runners, nearly 30 acts dot the course offering uplifting music to keep participants motivated. Check out the entire lineup of course entertainment here.

The Hop! brings in North Carolina-based He is Legend, a band to be excited about if you’re into rocking hard. Other bands on the lineup include Must Be the Holy Ghost, FAUS, the Revision Scheme and more. Doors open at 7 pm for the all-ages show.

Also, check out these two benefit shows happening this weekend. 
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Tuesday, April 28, 2015

TUESDAY TASTE: New Blur, Inherent Vice and great Vietnam doc in week's releases

Posted By on Tue, Apr 28, 2015 at 12:55 PM

Each week we delve into the new music and home video releases and find the best of the bunch. It's the Tuesday Taste, and this week's has a few delicious morsels for you. 

No doubt the hardcore Wu-Tang fans still recovering from their half-assed recent release might look for something better from Raekwon's new solo disc, and Guided by Voices fans this week can delve into another solo set from bandleader Robert Pollard. Oh, and the new Zac Brown Band album will probably sell a zillion or so copies to people who dig that burley dude's country-rock stylings.

I'll pass on that one. And next week has a ridiculous amount of great new releases, so saving money is better than buying questionable releases. There is one release this week worth particular attention, though, and it comes from Blur, with a set called The Magic Whip. The Damon Albarn-led crew has been gone a while, but you can bet the same groovy, pop-rock sensibilities Albarn brought to Gorillaz and his solo work will show up on this one. Here's a taste of a new tune called "There Are Too Many of Us": 

The mainstream releases include the awful Jennifer Lopez vehicle The Boy Next Door, and the movie version of Paddington, the cute little bear. But there are some much better options for you: 

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CONCERT REVIEW: Anthrax defies the years at Spokane Arena

Posted By on Tue, Apr 28, 2015 at 11:25 AM

Joey Belladonna (left), drummer Charlie Benante and Scott Ian of Anthrax. - DAN NAILEN
  • Dan Nailen
  • Joey Belladonna (left), drummer Charlie Benante and Scott Ian of Anthrax.

Some styles of music understandably traverse decades with no problem. Performers who sit behind a piano or gently strum an acoustic guitar don’t put a lot of wear and tear on their bodies.

How the thrash-metal dudes in Anthrax — all in their 50s, save for the new lead guitarist — are still doing what they do on stage more than three decades after their debut album Fistful of Metal is totally beyond me. I’m sore just from some moderate headbanging and air-guitar "played" while watching their show.

Monday at Spokane Arena, Anthrax held the middle slot of a bill opened by Crobot and headlined by Volbeat, and they took the fans on a ride through their history, one that included a mosh pit for every song. They reached back to their 1985 album Spreading The Disease for “Madhouse,” and hit hard on their Among the Living album for show-opener “Caught in a Mosh” as well as the set-ending salvo of “I Am the Law” and “Indians.” 

Throughout, the band was as frisky on stage as in their younger days. Guitarist Scott Ian, the most recognizable member of the band for non-fans, raced around and threw up his “devil horns” toward appreciative fans in front after every song. Bassist Frank Bello crouched so low his bass nearly scraped the ground as he plucked his strings and sang backup. New lead guitarist Jon Donais was comfortable settling in and ripping out stinging solos among the musicians a good 15 years or so older. Anthrax drummer Charlie Benante had to sit out the first few weeks on the tour due to some Carpal Tunnel Syndrome issues, but his temporary replacement Jon Dette more than ably replicated Benante's dexterity as he drove the band forward. And out front, the on-again, off-again, now-on-again lead singer Joey Belladonna spent his time exhorting the crowd to pump their fists and sing along to the anthems that made Anthrax one of the “Big Four” of thrash bands, along with Metallica, Megadeth and Slayer.

The highlights for me were the band’s Joe Jackson cover, “Got the Time,” and a monstrous take on “Antisocial” that had even those on hand for Volbeat singing along and throwing their horns to the sky of the half-filled arena.

It was an hour-long blast of high-energy fun, and the band sounded good in the cavernous space. And I don’t know about the guys in the band, but today I could use a massage.

Correction: This post has been updated since it was originally posted. 
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Friday, April 24, 2015

THIS WEEKEND IN MUSIC: Orgy, Tech N9ne and Anthrax

Posted By on Fri, Apr 24, 2015 at 5:14 PM


Check for yourself here.

Orgy (the band, not the event) is coming to the Palomino Saturday. Orgy disbanded in 2004, but now the original singer Jay Gordon is back with some hired hands and some new tunes rooted in hard rock with some electronic flourishes. Thirion X, Helldorado, 9ELECTRIC and Death Valley High open for the band. Cost is $20 at the door.

Buzz Vineyard turns 65 and also releasing a new album full of folksy, singer-songwriter songs at Jones Radiator Saturday. Not bad for one night. The show starts at 7:30 pm.

Seattle’s the Lucky Boys are preparing to bring their brand of cutthroat (Kimi Cutthroat is their lead singer, after all) punk rock sound to Mootsy's stage Saturday. Redvolt (out of Richland) and Siamese Suicide open the show at 9 pm. 

Big Dipper brings in the always-cool Fly Moon Royalty Saturday. The Seattle duo expertly combines hip-hop and diva soul music to create music you’ll want to dance to all night. The always funky Flying Spiders open up the show that starts 7 pm. The cost is $12 at the door. 

Also, note the seventh Round at the Bartlett happens Saturday featuring Cami Bradley. 

No matter what the rumors have convinced you of, Tech N9ne does not have a house in Spokane. But he still comes through town at least twice a year, often playing at the Knitting Factory as he will this Sunday. The show starts at 7:30 pm and features openers Krizz Kaliko, Chris Webby, Murs and more. Cost is $28 for the all-ages show. Read our recent story here

House of Shem, the hottest reggae act out of New Zealand comes through the Red Room Lounge Sunday. Valley of Green opens for the show that starts at 9 pm. 

Danish rockers Volbeat headlines the Spokane Arena Monday night with the help of Anthrax (known as one of the "Big Four" in metal, along with Megadeth, Slayer and Metallica) and groove-rock Crobot Monday. A ticket is $40 at the door. Expect the night to rock seriously hard.

Meanwhile, over at the Baby Bar/Neato Burrito the Gooch Palms, Death Valley Girls, 66beat, Phlegm Fatale, Street Tang play for free. The show there is expected to rock equally as hard but with much more of a punk/grunge taste. Starts at 8 pm. 

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Lyrics Born headlines Elkfest 2015

Posted By on Fri, Apr 24, 2015 at 10:54 AM

For its 11th year, Elkfest brings in an eclectic mix of regional and local artists, including headliner/Japanese-born rapper Lyrics Born. Since the early ’90s, the artist (aka Tsutomu “Tom” Shimura) has made socially conscious music that more than transcends his Bay Area home. He’s the type of dude who flows over hard beats but is also influenced by soul, jazz and jam-band music. His upcoming album Real People features Trombone Shorty and Galactic. Expect him to start his set off strong with the groovin' hit "Callin' Out." Seattle blues rockers the Grizzled Mighty, who play Spokane at least once a year, should offer up a wild set, as well. Here are the other bands to get excited about.


Touring acts
Lyrics Born
The Grizzled Mighty
Ayron Jones & the Way
Robert Jon & the Wreck
Rust on the Rails
Megan Wilde

Local acts
Hey! is for Horses
Flying Spiders
Pine League
DJ Ahem
Leftover Soul

The free Browne’s Addition block party, happening the weekend following Volume, runs June 5 through 7. As always, the event is all-ages, although the beer gardens are 21+.

Last year, headliners Minus the Bear weren’t announced until closer to the event, so we’ll see if any other big acts are added later. Either way, the lineup as-is will make up a fantastic soundtrack for a weekend in the sun. 
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Tuesday, April 21, 2015

TUESDAY TASTE: New Built to Spill, Alabama Shakes albums highlight the week

Posted By on Tue, Apr 21, 2015 at 12:30 PM

Every week the entertainment biz drops a slew of new albums and movies on the market, and we're here every Tuesday to sift through it all to give you the best of the week's new releases. Let's get to it. 

It's a pretty monster-sized week for new music, coming hot on the heels of Record Store Day, and new releases from Joywave, Passion Pit, Rocky Votolato, Wire, Yelawolf and They Might Be Giants all warrant a listen. Here are the three new releases I'm most excited about:  

Built to Spill — Boise's finest! — took six years between albums, and the band has undergone some lineup changes in the intervening years. You wouldn't notice, though, listening to the new Untethered Moon, another set of searing guitar solos and dreamy excursions courtesy of main man Doug Martsch. Here's a pretty damn funny video for "Never Be the Same:"

Alabama Shakes
seemed like one of the most overrated band's in recent memory when I saw them just as their debut album was being released. There was no denying the magnetic appeal of lead singer Brittany Howard, but the rest of the band were boring on stage, coming off as a competent bar band and little more. On their recordings, though, Howard's voice and guitar is the focus, and that's a good thing. Sound & Color is their new album, here's a taste: 

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CONCERT REVIEW: Neko Case rocked the Bing despite missing bandmate

Posted By on Tue, Apr 21, 2015 at 10:55 AM


Starting a concert by announcing one of the band members is missing might seem an odd choice, but when it comes to the importance of singer Kelly Hogan to Neko Case's crew, an unmentioned absence would have surely distracted long-time fans who knew they'd be missing out both killer harmony vocals and the priceless, hilarious stage banter the two women share. 

As much as Hogan was missed Monday night, though, Case and the rest of her band promptly did their best to make everyone at the Bing forget about the empty spot on stage, starting with Case's stunning a cappella take on show-opener "Nearly Midnight, Honolulu" and continuing through the triumphant closer "Ragtime" — both from her 2013 album The Worse Things Get, The Harder I Fight, The Harder I Fight, The More I Love You

Much of the show was drawn from that excellent release since Case spent much of the past year or so recording and touring with New Pornographers. Like the missing Hogan, the show didn't suffer from a lack of new tunes. Hearing Case's clarion call of a voice ring through the Bing immediately engaged the audience (although dancing along was strictly verboten, judging by one overzealous security guard who shut down a couple trying to dance). Photos and videos were no-nos as well — a welcome restriction given how distracting glowing screens are in an intimate, intense setting like the one Monday. Case is the kind of powerful presence who can bring a room to silence just by opening her mouth to sing, and it was hear-a-pin-drop-quiet more than once during the evening. 
A look at Neko Case's stage—just before security reminded me of the no-photo policy. - DAN NAILEN
  • Dan Nailen
  • A look at Neko Case's stage—just before security reminded me of the no-photo policy.

That doesn't mean the show was stiff or staid. Quite the contrary. Even without Hogan to goad her on, Case had plenty of great one-liners eliciting laughs between songs. After "Bracing for Sunday," she looked toward the chandeliers and said, "I'm pretty stoked on these lamps. They look like macaroons, but they light up around the edges. They make me hungry and design-y."

After "Where Did I Leave That Fire," "This Tornado Loves You" and "That Teenage Feeling," Case strapped on an electric guitar and kicked up a good ruckus with her guitarists Jon Rauhouse and Eric Bachmann for "If You Knew." Known for her voice for obvious reasons, Case's playing on electric and acoustic guitars is probably under-appreciated. She spent plenty of time Monday showing that she's a fine instrumentalist, too. 

Some of Case's older songs were clear fan favorites, and highlights of the show. "Margaret vs. Pauline," "The Pharaohs," "Hold On, Hold On" and "Hex" all killed, as did The Worse Things Get songs "Calling Cards" (complete with Rauhouse on trombone!), "Man" and "City Swans." 

Case hit the encore after 19 songs by singing the praises of the venue, noting they had popcorn hot and ready when she arrived, as well as organic tampons. The first encore featured just Case on stage, singing "Outro With Bees" from her Blacklisted album before the band rejoined her for "Deep Red Bells," "I Wish I Was the Moon" and "Ragtime." 

It was a great show by all counts, although I wish the lack of Hogan meant we were guaranteed a return visit when Case makes another album. 
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Friday, April 17, 2015

THIS WEEKEND IN MUSIC: Old men rockers, Kazzuzapalousa and 4/20 festivities

Posted By on Fri, Apr 17, 2015 at 11:56 AM


The fuzzy power pop act the Hoot Hoots are coming through Spokane again this weekend — they must love us. The talented Seattle four-piece brings along their friends Smokey Brights for the Bartlett show and Lavoy will open the party with the promise of at least two new songs. Get there at 8 pm. Tickets are $12.

One of the two underappreciated old men rockers coming through this week is Texas Americana singer-songwriter Alejandro Escovedo. Tonight, he’ll play acoustic with violinist Susan Voelz at the Palomino Club. The show is $15 and starts at 9 pm. Leon Russell (the other old man rocker) plays the Bing Crosby Theater Wednesday.

It’s Record Store Day! Get out there and support your local record stores, duh.

The second weekend of Coachella is just starting up, signaling the return of music festival season in America. Jumping on the festival bandwagon this year is KZUU 90.7 FM, Washington State University’s non-commercial radio station, with its first-ever Kazzuzapalousa in Pullman, happening at the BellTower. The event include Seattle-based headliners Chastity Belt and Childbirth (the latter made up of members from Pony Time, Tacocat and Chastity Belt), two remarkable feminist punk bands who know how to rock the hell out of any joint they play. Other acts include Corey J. Brewer, Daniel Halligan, Youryoungbody, Blackwater Prophet, the Static Tones and Smashclub. There will be local art, and also food and booze for sale. The festival begins at 2 pm and is $8 for students, $10 for the public.

Just across the state line, Moscow is hosting its annual Hemp Fest at East City Park. The musical lineup includes (and we couldn’t make these names up): Charcoal Squids, Galactic Tofu Farmers, Phoenix 99, Voodoo City Radio, Bread & Circus, Endangered Species and more. The event, which includes vendors and guest speakers, is free and goes from 10 am to 7 pm.

As April 20 is on a Monday this year, many of the activities are happening one day prior. Royal's Cannabis is hosting a 4/20 Festival Sunday from 10 am to 6 pm. The event features live DJ music and four hand-rolled joints for $20. Meanwhile 4:20 Friendly is hosting the event, Why Wait ‘Til 4:20? The day goes from 2 pm to 7 pm and includes music from Thief of Hearts and Psycho Syndicate. Be sure to bring a blanket and/or chairs for this one.

Also note that Neko Case performs at the Bing Crosby Theater Monday. 
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Where to get your vinyl for Record Store Day 2015

Posted By on Fri, Apr 17, 2015 at 10:46 AM

This Saturday, it’s time for yet another wild Record Store Day — the event that’s almost single-handedly kept independent record stores in the Inland Northwest and beyond in business for the past decade. While there are fewer record stores participating this year (Groove Merchants is too new and Deadbeat Records moved from Moscow to Olympia), there are more than enough options to see you through. 

If you’re a huge audiophile, you already have a list of the exclusive records, archival reissues and fun-colored rarities to go after. For everyone else, it’s time to catch up. Awesome limited-releases include tracks from nearly any genre you ever wanted, from U2 to Monty Python. Check out an entire list here.

Expect a line around the block at all of these locations so plan accordingly. Also don’t forget, these record stores are open other days of the year, too.

Recorded Memories
1902 N. Hamilton St.
Expect: Outside sidewalk vinyl sale (weather pending), along with exclusive Record Store Day items and swag inside. The store normally opens at 11 am and the doors are set to open somewhat early, at a to be determined time.

4,000 Holes
1610 N. Monroe
Expect: Special limited edition RSD poster available by the Inlander’s own graphic designer Derrick King. Doors open at 11 am. Live music by the Marshall McLean Band and Glenn Case starts at 3 pm.

The Long Ear
2405 N. Fourth St., Coeur d'Alene
Expect: Free giveaways and free coffee and snacks in line while you wait for doors to open at the usual 10 am. Be advised, this is the largest amount of product the business has ever ordered for RSD. 
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