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R’n’B isn’t normally my thing, so of course I felt completely out of place when I showed up to Pittsburgh’s Very Own 2 on August 10th at Mr. Smalls in time for the closing act: INEZ. This was a very special show for the ‘Burgh. Pittsburgh is not a town known for it’s female R’n’B stars, but after this phenomenal showing by some of the hottest talent in the city, that needs to change. That...

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Rex and Ben are Sometimes Chad. No…that’s actually their band name. What did you think I meant? And on August 30th, Sometimes Chad will be releasing their 5-song EP How Do You Sleep. The first thing that struck me about their debut EP is that it does not sound “indie” at all.  You know what I mean because we’ve all heard the bands. Heck, a lot of my friends are in those bands. “What bands?”...

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I showed up to the newly remodeled Thunderbird Cafe in Lawrenceville for Working Breed’s release of Hieroglyphica on August 24th. Working Breed is one of those insanely talented bands that should be on a world tour somewhere – like the world. Every time I see them play live, that point is again driven home. Really, Pittsburgh, you’re hiding far too many of your musical gems. The first song in the set was “Mo Fo Ro...

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It’s the kind of piano line that should be played in a dark and smoky bar. Simple, emotional, powerful.  The vocals start: soft and sultry. The music keeps its simplicity and emotion as the verse leads the way to the chorus. The guitar is reminiscent of Larry Carlton – every note perfectly tasteful. It’s almost understated, but you couldn’t imagine the song without it. Like a subtle perfume, you’re not really aware of it but...

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OK, so “tragedy” might be too strong of a word, but there was certainly some bad luck flowing. We’ve all been the butt of an April Fool’s joke here or there, but what happens when the joke isn’t a joke?  Pull yourself up by the bootstraps and make things happen! On April 1st, the guitarist and bassist for the Wire Riots decided to quit the band over the phone. The next day, the drummer quit,...

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Me: I’m here with Erika Laing of Working Breed Erika: Hi! Me: One of my new favorite bands! YAY! Erika: Awww! Me: I have actually gotten to see them a couple of times. I don’t know if Erika’s noticed me lurking in the shadows at the shows. (Laughter) Erika: This last one I remember seeing you. Me: Ah, yes this last one! Yes, I was there. Jeremy, your drummer, works on my project, as well,...

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YES! I was one of the lucky ones that was invited to the Working Breed video release party for their single Turtle Race on December 14th at the Spirit Lodge in Lawrenceville. This was well worth the trip into the city and if you know me, you know I don’t do cities.  The video for Turtle Race was absolutely amazing – dark and brooding scenes of captivity interspersed with ironically brighter scenes of a marriage...

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Me: We are here with Jordan from The Breathing Process. Start at the beginning. I know I’ve listened to some of your tunes, of course I’m a metalhead, so there’s that. Jordan: Awesome! Me: Good stuff. Really good stuff. Jordan: Thank you!  Me: You are very welcome! Tell us about the band. How did you guys get together? How did you guys get started? Jordan: Oh, Man! The whole rundown, huh? Me: The whole rundown...

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Me: We are sitting here with some very delicious Mexican food after the gig with Unfinished Evolution, or at least three-fifths of it. We have Julia on vocals, Brandon on drums and Connor on guitar.  The other two band members, Pete and Logan, had other appointments unfortunately, so they missed all the fun.   It seems like every time I see you play live, it’s at the Smiling Moose so that must be your favorite...

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Me: I am sitting here in Starbucks, yet again – story of my life, with Katie Simone, singer extraordinaire, voice for hire. Katie: (laughing) That’s right! Me: That is right. Katie and I met through Dave, because all things come through Dave. Dave Sykut is my audio engineer. Katie is actually singing on my project and I believe the first time you’ve attempted Heavy Metal. Katie: Heavy Metal of that nature, yes. When I was...

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There is nothing I like more than seeing a young band come into their own. That’s exactly what’s happening with the up and coming Prog Rock band Unfinished Evolution. So far, I’ve seen them play times – twice last year and most recently on October 12th, 2018 at the Smiling Moose on Southside.  Every time I see them play, they get tighter and more polished. While that is generally supposed to happen with a band,...

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Who is Katie Simone and why should you care? Only one of Pittsburgh’s best-kept musical secrets. Katie has been one of the most sought-after and recommended singers in the Pittsburgh area for quite some time. And she’s working on her first solo release! I have gotten to see Katie work her magic live twice recently, once in a cover band she’s in and once rocking her own material. This review is for her original material....