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Friday, April 24, 2015

Five shows I'm stoked about tonight

Posted By on Fri, Apr 24, 2015 at 3:41 PM

Freddie T and The People - WAYNE BERTSCH
  • Wayne Bertsch
  • Freddie T and The People

Hey, what are you guys doing tonight? Nothing? What?! Let's fix that. 

Loretta Lynn comes to the Palladium tonight. We never know how many more chances we’ll get to see legends like Lynn on stage – she could decide to give it up and live in luxury for the rest of her life. But she’s appearing at the Palladium this weekend. Current tours have her playing classics like “You Ain’t Woman Enough (To Take My Man), “Coal Miner’s Daughter,” “Everybody Wants to Go To Heaven” and covers by Eagles, Patsy Cline, Toby Keith and Merle Haggard.

Spring tradition time! Rollicking local polka boys Polka Boy open up the Rathskeller Biergarten with this long Friday show. Show up early to grab a picnic table – this party goes until 11 p.m. (the Boys usually perform in two sets), and you’ll want a place to cool your heels eventually. Fingers crossed for good weather.

It's always a good night to see Sam Prekop. The Sea and Cake frontman journeys down from his Chicago home to perform his newest solo work, The Republic. It follows his 2010 album Old Punch Card, an exploration through modular synths. In a 2012 interview we did with Prekop, he said, “he often values most highly those records that are a real ‘trial’ to make. He says that records like Old Punch Card and his self-titled solo album are of the sort that ‘could probably never happen again,’ simply because they were so much work and because they arose from such unique situations.” Local experimenter Rob Funkhouser will open.

The Birdy's Battle Royales have been straight fire the last few weeks. We've had reviewer Jonathan Sanders out at every single show for weeks. He'll be there tonight, so buy him a drink if you catch him. He certainly deserves one. Tonight is the second semifinal round. 

You can't spell fun without F-R-E-D-D-I-E-T-A-N-D-T-H-E-P-E-O-P-L-E. Okay, maybe that isn't technically true. But this band, and their openers, the Pork and Beans Brass Band, are a hoot. We're not entirely sure they'll fit on the Melody Inn's tiny stage, but that might make the show even better. 
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Friday, April 17, 2015

Five local Record Store Day offerings

Posted By on Fri, Apr 17, 2015 at 11:14 AM

Art for the Big Damn Band release - DADDY KOOL RECORDS
  • Daddy Kool Records
  • Art for the Big Damn Band release

Yup, Record Store Day is tomorrow. Yup, most of the releases are national, but yup, there are some locals sneaking in with cool releases too. And of course, there's local artists performing all over Central Indiana tomorrow too. Here's a quick breakdown of those performances. 

First up on local releases, No Coast will release a brand new EP, limited to a run of 100. You've got two chances to grab it and see them play, first at Vibes and then at Kokomo's American Dream Hi-Fi. Musical Family Tree has a review of the release here, plus a three-song sampler on offer. 

Liner notes for Doog's reissue - MFT PRESERVATION SERIES
  • MFT Preservation Series
  • Liner notes for Doog's reissue
Speaking of Musical Family Tree, they're launching two brand new tapes on RSD as part of their Preservation Series. Sir Deja Doog's Some Kind of Sex will receive a 10th anniversary reissue, limited to 200 cassettes.

Dave Segedy handed over an album of demos for a Preservation Series release, too. (Read our latest feature on his band, Sleeping Bag, here. Segedy released a solo album on Jurassic Pop recently.) 

Daddy Kool Records will release a 7" by The Reverend Peyton's Big Damn Band called You Can't Judge A Book. That release garnered a ton of picks on our RSD shopping megalist. 

GloryHole Records will offer a RSD exclusive tape at their Vibes showcase, featuring four as-yet-unreleased America Owns The Moon songs. 

Got a lead on more local releases? Drop it in the comments! 

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Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Fifty bands and Bub announce anti-RFRA equality compilation

Posted By on Wed, Apr 15, 2015 at 5:52 PM

It's no surprise this cool project is coming from local label Joyful Noise — the now-internationally recognized label has always championed Hoosier-centric projects. This one — a biggie — highlights 50 bands in a LGBT fundraising effort post-RFRA. Purchasers get all 51 tracks via digital download, and can choose the track of their choosing as a lathe-cut single. All funds support Freedom Indiana, the ACLU of Indiana, and Indy Pride. 

Here's the list of participating bands (check out all those Hoosiers!) Asterisks denote rare or previously unreleased tracks. 

Andrew Dost (of fun.) *
Apache Dropout *
Balmorhea *
Benoit Pioulard *
Bonesetters *
Child Bite
CJ Boyd
Cross Record *
David Yow (of The Jesus Lizard)
Deerhoof *
Defiance, Ohio
Dumb Numbers *
Godspeed You! Black Emperor
Half Japanese
J Fernandez *
Kishi Bashi
Laura K Balke
Lily and Madeleine *
Lou Barlow *
Margot & the Nuclear So and Sos *
Mike Adams At His Honest Weight
Murder By Death
of Montreal *
Oneida *
Ought *
Protomartyr *
Reptar *
Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band
Rob Crow *
Rodeo Ruby Love
Sedcairn Archives *
Sleeping Bag
Son Lux
Sonny & The Sunsets *
Stranger Cat
Surfer Blood *
The Coke Dares *
The Soil & The Sun
Thee Oh Sees *
Thee Open Sex *
Thurston Moore Band *
Tim Kinsella
We Are Hex *
WHY? *
Yonatan Gat

And statement from the label: 

Lately all eyes have been on our home state of Indiana, and for all the wrong reasons. Our state legislature passed a bill known as Religious Freedom Restoration Act which was then signed into law by Governor Mike Pence. We believe this bill did not reflect the feelings of a vast majority of Hoosiers and we quickly rose up, demanding that the Governor and Legislature repeal the law. While an amended bill has subsequently lessened the harm, the fact remains that our LGBT family still do not have full protection under Indiana law.

To keep the drumbeat going, we have put together this compilation to support LGBT groups in Indiana actively continuing the fight to establish protections for all people. For your donation of $25 you will receive a download of all 51 tracks, plus you may choose one song to be hand-made into a 7" record. These records are lathe-cut, hand-numbered, and "made to order" - limited to the exact number requested. Some might end up limited to 15 copies, some might be 500. The quicker you order, the lower your number.
We will be taking orders through May 31, 2015.

100% of net profits will be donated to Freedom Indiana, the ACLU of Indiana, and Indy Pride. These organizations are actively fighting for LGBT rights and culture throughout Indiana. 

And from Lil Bub: 

Hello. It's me BUB.
Thank you for supporting this creative musical endeavor, brought to you by my beautiful and talented Indiana sisters and brothers, and our many friends. When planning my intergalactic journey to planet Earth, I specifically picked Indiana for my home because of its humbleness, hospitality, and the warmth and love of its people. Indiana is where I was rescued, it's where I found my family, and it's where I made my closest pals. Everything I have accomplished in my 3 years as the most famous and inspirational cat on the planet has its roots firmly planted in the soil of Indiana, and has blossomed from the hearts, hands, and minds of its people. Without my Indiana compatriots, I would not be where I am today.
Despite the unfortunate decisions of Indiana's lawmakers, the true people of Indiana are some of the best people on the planet. This project serves to celebrate those people and their talents, and to make it clear that we firmly believe in equality and acceptance, and won't stand for anything less in our state, or on this planet.

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Your Record Store Day Guide

Posted By on Wed, Apr 15, 2015 at 11:30 AM

  • Kristen Pugh


Indy CD and Vinyl

Most importantly, the dudes and dudettes at Indy CD and Vinyl are offering free coffee for when you roll in bright and early at 8 a.m. Okay, maybe that’s not the most important thing happening there all day, but it’s crucial to us (we need coffee to live). The first 200 customers in line will each get a stack of free tickets to the Vogue for 7-10 randomly selected shows. Dogfish Head will be pouring brews (bring on the 90 minute IPAs) and bringing beer brats; tons of giveaways from companies like Klipsch and Audio Engine will run all day.

And we haven’t even gotten to the music yet. Inside, DJs MetroGnome, Cool Hand Lex and Lockstar will spin, in addition to Deckademics DJ students. Outside, THEPREXFOREVA, Kid Quill, Coolidge, Cold Speck, Brother O’Brother, Five Year Mission, Jomberfox, Shimmercore and Kvlthammer will play (in that order). And, oh yeah, records. The trio of owners at Indy CD and Vinyl said they’ve ordered at least one of everything. Whoo!

806 Broad Ripple Ave.

Irvington Vinyl

Live music from Deezen, Last Four Digits and The Dockers will kick off at 2 p.m.; location is dependent on weather (if it’s nice, it’ll be outside; if it’s gnarly, it’ll be in the basement). They’ll offer official RSD goodie bags and give away a limited print of a John Mellencamp painting. Two of their bands have RSD-related releases; Deezen is on a new Kinks tribute tape coming out on RSD and The Dockers will release a special red and black vinyl record that day.

9 Johnson Ave.

Karma Records

There’s no live music at Karma this year, but they’ll run different contests all day to give away gift certificates, autographed items, and tickets to Wilco’s May show at the Murat at Old National Centre.

Various locations

LUNA Music

Hear ye, hear ye broke people! LUNA rolls out a big ol’ sidewalk sale of discount vinyl and CDs, plus they’ve got a bunch of grab bags with samplers and treats. In the back, they’ve got music from Nat Russell, Busman’s Holiday, Frankie and The Witch Fingers, Mike Adams At His Honest Weight, Vacation Club and Oreo Jones and Ghost Gun Summer. Jones, DMA and LUNA lady Abby Goldsmith will host and DJ.

You can read about the exclusive-to-LUNA goodies in owner Todd Robinson’s entry on our megalist a page or so back, but we’ll recap it quickly here: the biggie is the sweet 20th Anniversary Live at LUNA lathe cut 7” box set featuring live recordings from Bill Callahan, Kyle Field, Mark Kozelek, Kurt Vile and Ben Watt; these guys have art from Nat Russell, screen-printing from Dave Windisch (former NUVO Art Director), plus they’re all lathe-cut by People In The Position To Know’s Mike Dixon on a vintage lathe. Robinson is also reissuing Good Morning Blues by San Francisco’s Assateague; they’ll have non-record goodies too, like a special LUNA frisbee (free for the first 15 people in line) and those gorgeous U-Turn Orbit turntables. Bee Coffee, Citizen Hash and Upland will be vending and Laundromatinee will be shooting video.

5202 N. College Ave.

Vibes Music

Vibes, due to close at the end of May, is keeping it simple this RSD. GloryHole will once again put on an all-day showcase that’s our pick for the best RSD lineup in town. Music kicks off at noon with Adam Kuhn and Kaylie Pickett, followed by Chemical Envy, Absonites, Vess von Ruhtenberg, S.M. Wolf, Pnature Walk, No Coast, Phases, Thee Tsunamis and Apache Dropout, wrapping up at 7:15 p.m. No Coast will release a new seven-song EP at the show.

1051 E. 54th St.


Vinyl Rescue Project

About 90 – 95 percent of the official RSD releases will be available at this Southside shop, which will also offer giveaways, discounts on all the regular new and used vinyl, PLUS free vinyl every day this week in the leadup to RSD.

520 N. SR 135, Suite M


Village Green Records

For those who want to take a Record Store Day road trip adventure, Village Green’s plans are well worth your time. They’ve booked Shiny Penny and the Critical Shoes, Freak, Lee Harvy and The Oswalds, Architecture Aviva, Forgotten Tribe, Ampersand Blues Band, Bonesetters and Archives for live music. Inside, note the 10 percent off new stuff (not RSD exclusives, unfortunately) and 20 percent off everything used. Organizers note that set times are approximate, so plan on being flexible.

519 N. Martin St.


Landlocked Music

How we remember the line that stretches around Landlocked by mid-morning every Record Store Day. Bloomington. It’s worth getting in line for this one. This time, they’ll have Bloomie marching band Jefferson St. Parade Band playing outside for those who wait, plus coffee from Uel Zing Coffee. Inside, Mike Adams, Stephen Westrich, Ann Jonker and Magician Johnson will DJ in between sets from Thee Open Sex, Birimbi and The Cowboys. Upland will pour its Vinyl Tap Rye Pale Ale in exchange for a donation to Girls Rock; bring t-shirts for their cool outdoor screen printing station hooked up by In Case of Emergency Press. Plus, tons of records, of course.

202 N. Walnut St.

TDs CDs and LPs

Bloomington’s underground record store TDs (yes, actually underground) is marking down $1 LPs to 50 cents and $3 LPs to $2, so come on in, bargain hunters. They’ll also have all kinds of official RSD-related goodies. There’s absolutely no room in this jewel box of a record store for live music, so head over if you need a (relatively) quiet reprieve from the bands.

322 E. Kirkwood Ave.


Tracks says it’s absolutely loaded with merchandise, plus it’s got donuts and coffee to power you through 13 hours of shopping. This is the big early destination spot in Bloomington, so plan on hauling down 37 bright and early if you’re coming down from Indy.

415 E. Kirkwood Ave

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Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Brookinz' ultimate 420 playlist

Posted By on Tue, Apr 14, 2015 at 4:27 PM

A behind the scenes shot of Brookinz at our 420 photo shoot. - MICHELLE CRAIG
  • Michelle Craig
  • A behind the scenes shot of Brookinz at our 420 photo shoot.
You'll read all about Jay Brookinz tomorrow in our 420 cover story, but we didn't want you to forget he's a killer producer, beat battler and event planner in addition to his role as social media manager at 20 Past 4 & More. In celebration of our 420 issue, we asked Brookinz to create the ultimate 420 playlist for your listening pleasure. BONUS: It's all local! 

We'd be remiss not to mention Brookinz' killer producer tag team battle going down this Saturday at The Hi-Fi. For those who haven't checked out his annual Beat Battle, this is a great introduction to the producer scene in Indy. For those who have – you're not going to miss this, right? It kicks off at 10 p.m. for $7 a person. 

Brookinz 420 mixtape
Dom Heard'Em Say – “Drugs Kill”
Sirius Blvck – “Backwoods”
Mandog – “Faygo” (Diop x Pope Adrian Bless)
Don Chambers – “High Tunes” prod. by MJ Nichols
Diop – “Cloud of Loud” prod. by Mandog
Mardi Hendrix – “Floating”
Peter Haze – “Gold Mitsubishi”
Indiana Chief – “The Hunt” (Running Bodies)
Ajene tha God – “Cristiano Ronaldo”
G. Granite feat. Freddie Bunz - “ERYTHANG”
J. Brookinz – “Naptonian” feat.. Freddie Bunz, John Stamps, Sirius Blvck, KING GoD, Grey Granite, prod. by Mandog
BORED Benny – “Another One” (Benny x Lyon)
A.G. Tha Pharoah – “Rastaman”
Boss L – “Bud Sack 2013”
Mathaius Young – “Take It UP”
Harry Otaku – “18Empty”
Jamar – “Dreamcatcher”

Stream it here:

For those wondering about his annual Gateway series: He posted this message on Facebook earlier officially announcing the conclusion of the Gateway series (although the door seems to be open for someone to take on the project):

As some of you have already heard I will not be releasing a GATEWAY album this year. I would like to take the time to thank every person who has ever participated in the projects over the past 5 years. It was a wild ride that helped bring artists of all types together as one, and that's what I will miss the most. I made a lot of lifelong friends during those sessions and got to see a lot of Indy artists grow and blossom to become pillars in the scene today. I hope in the future we find ways to come together and create art as a unit, and also let our guards down and interact with new people. That's what it was all about in the first place. I want to invite anyone out there that wants to take the reins of the series to contact me and share some ideas. I have to warn you though...It is no easy task to do a compilation album but if you're REALLY up for it, I'd be down to offer assistance. Peace...keep following your dreams.
‪#‎Indiana‬ ‪#‎HipHop‬

Read our previous coverage of Brookinz and his Gateway series here. 

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Thursday, April 9, 2015

Can't miss concerts this weekend

Posted By on Thu, Apr 9, 2015 at 2:43 PM

Twin Peaks, Saturday at Culture Shock - PHOTO BY POONEH GHANA
  • Photo by Pooneh Ghana
  • Twin Peaks, Saturday at Culture Shock

It'd be impossible to get to every show taking place in Indy this weekend. So here's a few that are definitely worth checking out.


Birdy’s Battle Royale Wild Card Round

April 10, 7:30 p.m. Birdy’s Battle Royale pits 48 bands against each other in a months-long competition for cash and prizes. Each week, the top two bands progress to the next round. This week’s show is a big and weird one: tons of third place groups compete for a chance to sneak into the second round.

Birdy’s Bar and Grill, 2131 E. 71st St., $7, 21+ 

Read Sanders’ Week 8 report

Three Muses Vinyl Release Concert 

April 10, 8 p.m. The Sophie Faught Trio we enjoy weekly on Wednesdays at the Chatterbox Jazz Club is traveling a new road — a vinyl road ­— with the release of Three Muses, an album of original jazz music by tenor saxophonist Faught, bassist Nick Tucker and percussionist Ben Lumsdaine. Here's your first chance to hear it live.

Indy Reads Books, 911 Mass Ave., FREE, all-ages 

Check out the full profile on the release


Culture Shock 2015

April 11, 1 p.m. This one's for you Bloomington Folks. Culture Shock is amazing. It’s an all-day showcase of local, regional and national acts for free in a mini-fest setup that’s – get this – open to everyone. This year, Sirius Blvck and Oreo Jones, Thee Tsunamis, Dietrich Jon, Mike Adams at His Honest Weight and Vista Kid Cruiser take the local slots, with Foxygen, Twin Peaks and TOPS rounding out the regional/national slots. There will be food, drinks and stuff to buy from local business, plus some good ol’ collegiate camaraderie, all thanks to WIUX with help from IU’s Union Board.

Dunn Meadow, 900 E. 7th St. (Bloomington), FREE, all-ages

Check out this Mike Adams music video


April 11, 9 p.m. If jam bands are your thing, don’t miss this show. Instrumental rock group Tauk drop by the Trap with special guests Steady Flow. Two great live acts for the small fee of $10. And if the weather holds out, some time spent on the patio as well.  

Mousetrap, 5565 N. Keystone Ave., 21+ 



April 12, 8 p.m. Les Claypool. LES CLAYPOOL. Les Claypooooooool. Can you tell we love Les? We do. We really do. They released Primus & the Chocolate Factory with the Fungi Ensemble last year which was a "remix" of the soundtrack off Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory. They've also recently released a joint-written book called Primus, Over the Electric Grapevine: Insight into Primus and the World of Les Claypool, chronicling the group’s entire career.

Murat Theatre at Old National Centre, 502 N. New Jersey St., prices vary, all-ages 

A review of Primus’s last Murat show

Find many more concerts

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Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Reptar + Joyful Noise = <3

Posted By on Wed, Apr 8, 2015 at 1:39 PM

Among a spate of new signings to local label Joyful Noise Recordings in early 2015 is Reptar, a joyfully poppy quartet out of Athens, Georgia. Their new album Lurid Glow dropped last week in accompaniment with a tour that stops tonight at the Hi-Fi with support from Icky Blossoms. I checked in with the band last night via email about RFRA, grandmas and their brand new label. (PS: If you're underage — or just prefer afternoon shows — Reptar will stop in at LUNA Music for an in-store today at 4 p.m.)

NUVO: How did you get connected with Joyful Noise, and how is your time with the label thus far?

Reptar: We are all pretty much completely in love with Joyful Noise Recordings. The other artists they work with are some of our longtime favorites but most importantly the people at the label are some of the most incredible we've ever met. Not to take away from anyone else we've worked with — we have been lucky to work with some great people — but the Joyful Noise folks are so much on the same page as us.

Getting signed up with them was pretty natural, we had a mutual friend that put us in touch, then we played a show in their super cool show space in Indianapolis, then had a mutual declaration of love over breakfast the next morning and that was pretty much it. We started pressing records and working on artwork months before actually getting around to signing a contract.

Watch Reptar's Joyful Noise announcement signing video, complete with an appearance by a very cute dog named Gravy.

NUVO: If you're familiar/kept up with the Indiana Religious Freedom Bill, did you ever consider canceling your show here, a la Wilco?

Reptar: I don't think there's much I can say about the actual bill that hasn't already been said, but I am glad people have a strong response to the potential for discrimination and are doing something about it. I think our band has much more to offer the conversation by coming to Indianapolis and creating as accepting a space as possible, and trying to engage people in conversations. It's possible a huge band like Wilco can add to the political impetus to change the bill by canceling a show — that is a lot of money and it gets a whole bunch of press coverage. We aren't close to big enough to generate that amount of attention so we're looking for other ways to help.

NUVO: How does the history of the Athens scene inspire/influence/affect you as a band? Any particular favorite locals?

Reptar: On one hand, we aren't consciously thinking of Athens music history when writing or recording music. On the other hand, we do know and love and listen to way more AThens bands than if we didn't live in Athens. We constantly run into and hang out with all these incredible people who are in amazing bands that we listen to a lot. It's impossible to overstate how much we love newer bands like Grand Yapids, New Madrid, Nana Grizol or older bands like Pylon, The Glands, Love Tractor and everyone else we know and love.

NUVO: What's the most difficult part of adapting your recorded material to a live show?

Reptar: There is a lot of sequenced synthesizer stuff on the record. We wanted to figure out how to reproduce that layered sound but still have most of the tracks played live. Also the energy of the record is pretty dynamic and goes into some places that don't always fit well in a high energy live set. We haven't been playing all the songs off the album. Most of the songs are pretty easy to translate though, since we were trying to make the record a little more reflective of what it's like for us to play in a room to people and we tried to focus the sound a little more on this record.

NUVO: Your album is what ... a week old at this point? Happy one week anniversary, Lurid Glow. Any surprises with the release thus far?

Reptar: I think it's going great so far. We're so excited people finally get to listen to the record and get a little familiar to the songs we're playing before they see them in our set.

NUVO: Y'all mentioned a "bleakness" that pervades a lot of this record — can you expand on that?

Reptar: Thematically, most of the songs in some way reference and struggle with the effect the omnipresence of technology, especially the Internet and social media, has on humans and their relationships. It's not a concept album or anything but that's always more of a background noise or subtext for the songs. There has always been some bleakness in the lyrics of our songs, but I think this time we had more fun exploring bleaker soundscapes and textures.

NUVO: What's your go-to tour album to listen to right now?

Reptar: It's not an album but we have been listening to Welcome to Night Vale a lot. Kate Bush, Fleetwood Mac, Yo La Tengo have all made recent sonic appearances as well.

NUVO: How do you explain the type of music you make to your grandmothers? (I don't know why, but I find this a hilarious question. Probably because I just got off the phone with my grandmother.)

Reptar: We actually stopped by grandma's house just yesterday! She had pizza and beer for us. It was wonderful. I think the best way we've found to tell any and all grandmas what kind of music we make is "weirdo rock and roll electronic stuff for people who want to dance."
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Friday, April 3, 2015

Wilco cancels May 7 concert in Indy in response to RFRA

Posted By on Fri, Apr 3, 2015 at 12:03 PM

UPDATE: Wilco has reinstated their May 7 show at the Murat after new legislation was passed to clarify RFRA.

A statement from the band via Facebook: 

We are canceling our May 7 show at the Murat in Indianapolis. The “Indiana Religious Freedom Restoration Act” feels like thinly disguised legal discrimination to us. Hope to get back to the Hoosier State someday soon, when this odious measure is repealed. Refunds available at point of purchase.

Read more responses to the Religious Freedom Act here. 
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Thursday, April 2, 2015

RFRA palate cleanser dance party

Posted By on Thu, Apr 2, 2015 at 10:52 AM

This has been a rough week to be a Hoosier, hasn't it? I realized yesterday that soreness in my neck is probably from leaning over my computer keyboard with shoulders clenched, reading infuriating article after infuriating article about the absolute madness going down in Indiana right now. I've wanted to pick so many Twitter fights with people tweeting about how horrible and backwards Indiana is, because I know it's just not so. We are more than the choices our horrible government makes. We're musicians and creators and writers and dancers and promoters and planners and party people. We put out a paper saying it every week: Indianapolis —- Indiana — has so much great stuff here. 

I don't know about you, but I've got to shake it off, Taylor Swift-style. At least for a second. Let's do it with local music videos. This is what is awesome about Indiana, y'all. 

We'll kick it of with this song honoring certified delight Bill Murray. 

Swing around to NUVO favorites Reverend Peyton's Big Damn Band, and their irrepressibly fun ode to delicious meats and true love.

Make a quick stop in Hen Land, a delightfully weird place to be. 

Animate ourselves to dive through TVs with the Brain Twins and SM Wolf. 

Hit the streets with Andy D.

Wave hello to the delightful Barfly'd Hero Jr., captured by MonkeyEatsMonkey.

Check in with this live Laundromatinee session with Freddie Gibbs.

And wrap up with the dearly missed Dreamers of The Ghetto. 

Now don't you feel better? I do. 

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Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Indiana labels, venues, studios and shops make RFRA statement

Posted By on Tue, Mar 31, 2015 at 5:35 PM

Photo from 2014 SC Distribution label summit. Includes staff of Secretly Group, Asthmatic Kitty, Joyful Noise, and Magnetic South. - SUBMITTED PHOTO
  • Submitted Photo
  • Photo from 2014 SC Distribution label summit. Includes staff of Secretly Group, Asthmatic Kitty, Joyful Noise, and Magnetic South.

Led by Bloomington's Secretly Group, a collection of music-related entities released a two-part statement today. The first hits upon familiar points: this bill is a disgrace and we must recall or drastically alter it. The second is refreshingly new call for musicians outside of Indiana to halt show cancellation. Read it in full below. Organizations looking to add their names to this list can sign at

We are a group of independent record labels and music businesses based in Indiana. We are deeply disappointed with the recent passage of the Indiana Religious Freedom Restoration Act and the message that it sends to those both in and out of our state. At the very least, this is a poorly written and unnecessary piece of legislation. At the worst, it provides a path to legal discrimination.

We join the chorus of Indiana residents and businesses calling on Governor Mike Pence and the Indiana General Assembly to repeal the IRFRA. Additionally, we appeal to our state government leaders to enact legislation clearly protecting the civil liberties of LGBT individuals to assure that none of our employees or neighbors may be discriminated against due to sexual orientation or gender identity.

Some businesses and individuals have taken action to suspend or reduce participation in Indiana's economy. While this sort of action is well-intended to place pressure on government leaders to repeal or fix this law, we feel an isolationist approach can sometimes be misguided. As music companies, we cherish the power which music and art can have in promoting social progress. We believe cultural events can be a great opportunity to put a glaring spotlight on injustice. We will continue to proudly call Indiana home, and we call on others in the arts community to address this issue constructively. To musicians with events scheduled in Indiana — please follow through and perform. While canceling shows is one way to protest, a greater statement can be made by coming here and using your art to influence the policy debate that is occurring locally. You can insist that the venue you play publicly states that they will not discriminate under any circumstances. If the venue won’t do that, rebook your show with another venue that will. Your performance can be a rally. We need your support locally.

We welcome other music businesses in Indiana to co-sign this letter with us:

Signed with respect,

Asthmatic Kitty Records
The Bishop
Bloomington Guitar & Amp
Cultural Cannibals
Dead Oceans (Secretly Group)
Flannelgraph Records
Fort William Artist Management
Indy CD & Vinyl
Jagjaguwar (Secretly Group)
Joyful Noise Recordings
Jurassic Pop Records
Landlocked Music
Luna Music
Magnetic South Recordings
Mahern Audio
Meitus Gelbert Rose LLP
MOKB Presents
Russian Recording
SC Distribution
SC Publishing (Secretly Group)
Secretly Canadian (Secretly Group)
Spirit of ’68 Promotions

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Ron Swanson abandons Indiana post-RFRA signing

Posted By on Tue, Mar 31, 2015 at 1:16 PM

Hot on the heels of Wilco's cancellation last night, Megan Mullally and husband Nick Offerman cancelled their show in Indy booked for May at Old National Centre. Yes, in response to RFRA. That's right, Mike Pence. You've driven Ron Swanson out of Indiana. If there's one thing we know about Ron Swanson, it's that he wouldn't care a lick about anyone's religious beliefs -- they're none of his business.

Well, he's not completely out of Indiana yet. He's still holding his April 1 show at the IU Auditorium tomorrow. He'll donate funds from the show tomorrow to the Human Rights Campaign.

For their part, talent buyers and promoters are keeping a close eye on continuing developments and boycotts as a result of RFRA.

"Whether you agree or disagree with this new legislation, it's clearly going to have an impact on the concert industry in Indiana. Ultimately, we work on behalf of the artists. We always have, and always will stand behind the decisions that they make," said Josh Baker, Talent buyer/Owner MOKB Presents

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Monday, March 23, 2015

NUVO at 25: Paul Mahern and Dale Lawrence reflect on bands that should have been big

Posted By on Mon, Mar 23, 2015 at 2:35 PM


Hear that rumbling somewhere in the distance? It's the sound of a printer gnashing its metaphorical teeth in delicious anticipation of NUVO's 25th Anniversary issue. The massive tome comes out Wednesday on stands that we've had to reinforce to withstand the girth of the absolutely gigantic issue we're dropping.

But you don't have to wait until Wednesday. We're prepping a little sampler platter of content for you today to give you a taste of what's to come, courtesy of chats with Paul Mahern and Dale Lawrence. 

We checked in with Paul Mahern during our 20th, and it felt only right to swing back around to recording extraordinaire and longtime musician for our 25th anniversary, too. Here's a few of his thoughts on great Indiana bands from the last 25 years he thought should have received more attention.

"Bloomington had that big write-up during the '90s in Billboard about being the next Seattle. A friend of mine came to the Broad Ripple Music Festival, I think that's what it was called. That would have ben '94, something like that. This friend of mine came from New York; he was working at RCA Records. He came to that thing specifically to see The Mysteries of Life. We had finished that first Mysteries of Life Record, and he came to see [them] at the Broad Ripple Music Festival, and they were playing at the Patio. Before they started, I was like, 'Hey, let's go around the corner here to this other club [to see Sardina]' — I forget what it was, Rock Lobster, or some other club that was right in that area at the time. I don't even know if Sardina had recorded yet; we watched Sardina and he was like, 'I wanna sign these guys!' So he immediately signed The Mysteries of Life and tried his hardest to sign Sardina."

"The music industry in general was way more open at that point. That was the echo effects of Nirvana and stuff. A lot of more interesting stuff was getting signed and people didn't know what was or what wasn't going to work. But just the indication that there was that much attention and excitement in one night from a major label record company for two different bands that were playing ... " 

"I would also say that The Vulgar Boatmen were one of the best bands I've ever seen. They're not really just from Indy because there's that whole Florida connection, but the Indianapolis band was absolutely incredible. They made some great records in the '90s. They had some kind of near-misses. They were in the UK and played on the Jules Holland show. They were kind of poised to be a pretty big band, but then something happened with the record company, a new president came in or something. They went from promoting them to not being interested." 

"There's a thread that runs through a lot of the records, a whole school of songwriting and record making that comes out of the Gizmos and Vulgar Boatmen. I think they have a huge effect on The Mysteries of Life; I think they had a pretty big effect on Kenny Childers and Gentlemen Caller and to a lesser extent even on the stuff that Vess did, the stuff that Sardina was doing. I think there's some real clear influences that Dale Lawrence [had]. He feels like the center point to me of the late '80s to mid-'90s Indiana sound. That rhythm guitar, almost like a variation on the Buddy Holly vibe. It's like Buddy Holly meets the Velvet Underground with really simple, beautiful songs and great rhythm guitar. That's the Indiana thing!" 
The Mysteries of LIfe - SUBMITTED PHOTO
  • Submitted Photo
  • The Mysteries of LIfe


After talking to Paul about the Dale Lawrence sound, I reached out to talk to the Lawrence about his bands The Gizmos.  Lawrence was the subject of a 2002 cover story by David Hoppe, excerpted below: 

"For some people, the space that separates life and art is so thin it doesn't really matter. Dale Lawrence is a good example. One Friday night during the winter of 1993, Lawrence, who writes sings and plays guitar for the band The Vulgar Boatmen, decided to go to a high school basketball game at Warren Central here in Indianapolis... As it happened, Lawrence had a good time that night - so good that he began traveling to games throughout the state. Not because he cared that much about who might win or lose, but to soak up the atmosphere he found in the gyms, the crowds and the hangouts where locals went to eat when the games were done. Lawrence has just published Hoosier Hysteria Road Book, about what he learned through the course of all those Indiana winter nights... .The music Lawrence has written with his collaborator, Robert Ray, over the course of almost two decades, is spacious, contemplative, evoking late night encounters in quiet kitchens and backseat trysts. There is a lot of driving in these songs - not with any destination in mind so much as a means of thinking things through. As Lawrence sits and gently yet emphatically sings, it seems like we can see Indiana through the glass over his shoulder, stretching all the way to the horizon."

Here's some of Lawrence's thoughts on bands that should have received more attention over the last 25 years. 

"The scene kind of ebbs and flows, and support ebbs and flows. I think it's as good in the last year or two as it's ever been. Clubs that are sustaining themselves, and seem like they're going to keep doing that. I've been doing this for over 25 years, and when you really think back on all of that time, there's been an extraordinary number of really good bands and musicians that have come out of Indianapolis, or Indiana, or whatever. ... There was a band out of Bloomington called Lola. They were really good, and people tend to forget that they existed, I think. Anymore, I don't know if the Lovemeknots are an overlooked group or not. They were a really good band, and at least tend to be taken for granted, I think. They had really good songs."

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