Music

Digging Deep: Coffin Problem release colossal self-titled, debut LP

Written by Eric Mitts | Thursday, 02 June 2016 11:52 |

The members of Grand Rapids’ Coffin Problem have one request for when you listen to their debut LP: Play it loud.

Anyone who’s caught the band’s epic live shows will echo the same. The music is enormous — enveloping every available space surrounding it before encapsulating eardrums in layers of dense distortion.

In an era when most rock acts eschew theatrics to focus all too seriously on “the music,” Ghost proves to be a throwback to a time when bands could do both. 

The Swedish band’s evil aesthetic is unmistakable. Fronted by Papa Emeritus III — the third iteration of the anti-Pope vocalist — and backed by a five-piece band of masked Nameless Ghouls, Ghost often causes a stir with its image before ever playing a note. 

Solid State Sounds: Local Music News and Happenings in May

Written by Eric Mitts | Monday, 09 May 2016 12:21 |

Local music news and shows in May, including La Dispute, Small Brown Bike, Mustard Plug, Greensky Bluegrass and more.

WIDR’s ‘Basement Show’ Unearths Local Sounds

Written by Dwayne Hoover | Monday, 09 May 2016 12:04 |

Even with SoundCloud, Bandcamp, YouTube and an assortment of other online avenues for bands to get heard, scoring time on local airwaves is still a highly sought after milestone for emerging groups.

Luckily for Kalamazoo musicians, hitting that FM signal is a plausible endeavor.

Since 1952, Western Michigan University's student-run radio station WIDR has been bringing listeners an alternative to the commercial drivel that typically dominates the airwaves.

Songs We Like, Vol. 9: Spring edition

Written by Benjamin Davey, WYCE | Saturday, 07 May 2016 08:59 |

This is a sonic collaboration among Revue, WYCE and AMI Jukeboxes. Play this mix as a playlist on AMI Jukeboxes, read about it here on revuewm.com and stream it on wyce.org. From Grand Rapids, to the world! This month: new music from Kendrick Lamar, Iggy Pop, Andrew Bird and more.

No Boundaries: Alejandro Escovedo Heads to St. Cecilia Music Center

Written by Dwayne Hoover | Tuesday, 03 May 2016 17:59 |

To describe Alejandro Escovedo's career may take some time, and not just due to its lengthy history, but because the guy's been all over the place. 

He comes from a wildly musical family, which includes his niece, Sheila E – the former collaborator and finance of the late Prince.

Baroness’ New LP Reflects the Band’s Horrific 2012 Bus Accident

Written by Eric Mitts | Monday, 02 May 2016 14:23 |

Baroness vocalist/guitarist John Baizley is a survivor, pure and simple. He just doesn’t want that to define him forever. 

Making international news in 2012, his Georgia metal band endured a horrifying bus crash while on tour in England, less than a month after the release of their colossal double-LP Yellow & Green. Baizley himself suffered a broken leg and a broken arm. The injuries were so severe it was uncertain if he’d be able play guitar again, or even be able to keep his arm.

Meanwhile the band’s former drummer Allen Bickle and bassist Matt Maggioni both endured serious vertebrae injuries from the wreck. The physical damages were so traumatic they parted ways with the group, leaving the band’s lineup shattered and its future uncertain. 

What began as a way to honor local philanthropist Irving S. Gilmore’s tremendous love for music, specifically the piano, has grown immensely, now boasting more than 100 concerts at various venues across West Michigan. 

Since 1991, the Gilmore International Keyboard Festival has hosted world-class music in the Kalamazoo area. But it’s not just concerts. You’ll also find master classes, a film series and a musical play throughout the 19-day festival, all of which focus on some element of keyboard music. 

As Record Store Day Approaches, Kalamazoo’s Vinyl Scene Thrives

Written by Dwayne Hoover | Thursday, 07 April 2016 07:45 |

Kalamazoo is stocked with sanctuaries for vinyl-record collectors and Sean Hartman, manager of Satellite Records, thinks he might know why. 

“A lot of it is a natural reaction to how disposable media has become,” said Hartman, who runs the shop located at 808 S. Westnedge Ave. in Kalamazoo. “There’s definitely something to having that physical piece that you had to look for and find. It’s fragile, you want to take care of it and you want to be able to appreciate it for the rest of your life. The artwork is cool and you can put it on the turntable, actually watch it play and listen to it in the order the artist intended as a complete work of art.”

Bermudas and Flushed Dual Cassette Release Party at Long Road Distillers

Written by Eric Mitts | Wednesday, 06 April 2016 16:55 |

If Grand Rapids’ local music scene is like one big family, then garage rock trios Bermudas and Flushed are like long-lost sisters, separated at birth.

Both bands are releasing albums this Friday, April 8 with a shared release show at Long Road Distillers. The new material will be available on cassette via Grand Rapids-based label Hot Capicola Records.

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