The year in local music 

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"I feel like the city is on fire right now,” David Adamson said to me last night when I swung by LUNA Music to pick up a last minute Christmas present.

We were talking about a particularly spectacular show that went down last week at Fountain Square’s Hi-Fi, when local rapper Sirius Blvck released his much-anticipated collaboration Light in the Attic with producer Bones of Ghosts. White Moms, Absent Fathers and Shame Thugs opened and the whole room buzzed from start to finish. The club was at capacity almost from the very beginning. And every single person there cared about local music.

You can feel that kind of thing, you know?


I’ve been to so many of those shows this year. Shows with bills that grab artists from all over the style stratosphere, that burn with kinetic energy. They’re always over too soon, but I love that after a really great local show, I get to relive it all the next morning via photos, video and sound clips that pop up on Facebook and Instagram. These are the shows that people are talking about for weeks after.

The supportive, electric environment I’m talking about came up all year long in my interviews. Rachel Peacock called it a “crossing of the tribes,” when I spoke with her about her space General Public Collective for our all-ages cover last week. Sugar Moon Rabbit singer Trevor Potts called it out when we talked about his genre-bending super group, Night of the Comet, and their benefit show at the Vogue in November.

Our Barfly, Wayne Bertsch, has long lamented the lack of an “Indianapolis sound.” (You can see more of Wayne’s end of the year thoughts in the music section.) And I’ve struggled too, when someone asks me to describe what music coming out of our city sounds like. “Well,” I usually say, “we have great hip-hop. And some interesting folk music is being released. And, oh, our psychedelic rock scene is growing every day. And let me tell you about our DJs …” And I go on and on. There’s no pat answer for our city. There’s too much happening here, so much live music to see and hear all the time. These live shows that sample a little bit of the best of everything are really the best way to experience Indianapolis.

I reached out to my regular NUVO freelancers to write to me about some moments of local music transcendence from 2014. You can find those stories here. And me? I can’t pick. When I look back at 2014, I remember all of these genre-crossing local shows that showcased the best of what Indy music has to offer. I remember catching someone’s eye at a show where something so awesome is happening on stage and grinning so wide.

Here’s to more diversity and community in 2015. See you at the shows.

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Katherine Coplen

Katherine Coplen

Bio:
Always looking for my new favorite band. Always listening to my old ones, too. Always baking cakes. Always collecting rock and roll dad quotes.

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