Midnight North

– ALL AGES- STANDING ROOM ONLYMIDNIGHT NORTHThere’s Always a Story represents a new chapter for Midnight North. Ten stories told through song on their most polished album to date.                 Reflecting on the time since their origin, Midnight North is ready to tell the world its story. A group of multi-instrumentalists with songwriting roots in Folk and Americana, Midnight North is a mainstay on the stages of the national touring circuit. Rolling Stone hailed Midnight North as the “Best New Act” in its review of 2018’s Peach Music Festival saying the band “takes the best parts of roots music and weaves them into a tapestry of rock and Americana.”Grahame Lesh, Elliott Peck, & Connor O’Sullivan began playing together in San Francisco. In early 2012 they played their first show as Grahame Lesh & Friends. Grahame & Elliott both brought a repertoire of original music to this new project that was a perfect marriage once the band began performing in earnest. In late 2012 the band went into the studio for the first time, tracking the entirety of their debut album End of the Night in just 2 days. End of the Night (mixed & produced by Connor) was released in June 2013 as they officially debuted the name Midnight North.The band began touring in June 2015, with the release of their second album Scarlet Skies. That began a five year run as a touring band, playing in 36 states in front of thousands of people across the country. They released Under the Lights, their most successful studio album to date, in summer 2017. “Across all of the tracks, when you think you have the band pegged for a style or a genre, all of a sudden a chorus, or a new solo or new instrument altogether, diverts the music boldly but smartly to a new sound and feel,” said The Poke Around in their review of Under the Lights. They also released two live albums including 2018’s Selections From the Great American Music Hall which featured Bob Weir & Phil Lesh of the Grateful Dead plus members of Twiddle as special guests.A pivotal moment for the band came when Grahame met drummer Nathan Graham at a benefit show in Philadelphia in 2016. A month later Nathan sat in with the band for a show, eventually joining the band for their longest tour to date in the Spring of 2017. Bringing on the well seasoned drummer as a full-time member of the band (and learning about his banjo playing, singing, and song-writing skills) represented the next step forward as plans were made to record their fourth studio album.In January 2020, the band went into a California studio with producer David Simon-Baker to craft their fourth studio album, There’s Always a Story, released in 2021 on Americana Vibes. As the world shut down in March and the band quarantined separately around the country, the album was finished remotely in California and Pennsylvania. As the months ticked by they let the rest of the newly written & recorded songs sink into their consciousness so that when work resumed on the album in June the entire album became even better than they could have hoped.2022 and beyond is a new beginning, and while Midnight North longingly looks ahead, hand-in-hand with the rest of the world, There’s Always a Story will serve as a collective and reflective narrative.

The Schizophonics

– ALL AGES- STANDING ROOM ONLYTHE SCHIZOPHONICSOver the last few years, THE SCHIZOPHONICS have built up a formidable reputation around the world as an explosive live act. Tapping into the same unstoppable combination of rock ‘n’ roll energy and showmanship that fueled THE MC5 in the heyday of the Grande Ballroom, their wild live show is heavily influenced by artists like JAMES BROWN, IGGY POP, JIMI HENDRIX, LITTLE RICHARD, and THE SONICS. Singer/guitarist Pat Beers and drummer Lety Beers formed the band in San Diego in 2009 and have worked tirelessly since then, playing hundreds of shows around the globe. In 2013 they were recruited as the backing/opening band for EL VEZ, which helped the band make a name for itself in Europe. Since then, they’ve played in numerous countries, and supported tours by like-minded acts like ROCKET FROM THE CRYPT, LITTLE BARRIE, THE WOGGLES and have opened for the DAMNED, DEVO, HIVES and CAGE THE ELEPHANT. Shindig magazine described their live show “Like watching some insane hybrid of WAYNE KRAMER, JAMES BROWN, and the Tazmanian Devil”.

PATIO SHOW: Half Gringa

– ALL AGES- LIMITED PATIO SEATING IN FIRST COME FIRST SERVEDHALF GRINGA Emerging from Chicago’s flourishing indie music scene, Half Gringa creates music informed by contemporary indie-rock and Latin American and midwestern folk. “When you grew up in the Midwest really into alternative rock, but heard a lot of country music in the supermarket,” offers Isabel Olive, the songwriter and multi-instrumentalist at the core of Half Gringa, when asked to place her music in a specific genre. “Or when your mom loved Bruce Springsteen and Maná and sometimes your brain starts playing them at the same time.” The name Half Gringa is both a tribute to and study of her legacy, stemming from a childhood term of endearment as “la Gringa” in her Venezuelan family and her bicultural experience growing up in the United States. Olive’s work seeks to narrate her tireless pursuit as a pupil of both her origins and her experiences.  Force to Reckon is the Chicago-based artist’s second full-length album, following her locally acclaimed debut, Gruñona, which landed on Chicago Magazine’s “10 Best Chicago Albums of 2017” and Chicago Reader’s “Best Chicago Albums of the Decade.” On the self-produced 9-song set, Olive is joined by her full-time band members — Nathan Bojko (drums), Sam Cantor (guitar), Andres Fonseca (bass), Lucy Little (violin) — as well as Ivan Pyzow on trumpet, with occasional harmonies and piano from fellow Chicago singer/songwriter Gia Margaret. But Force to Reckon has the intimacy of a solo project, and engaged listening feels like a glimpse into Olive’s journals of the last three years. “I’m very goal-oriented, but I’m also a very anxious person,” she says. “And I always need to have a plan or a process and try to predict every outcome so I’m prepared with my next move. When I started writing these songs I was feeling emotionally upended, a bunch of things came at me that I did not predict, and instead of feeling and responding in the moment, I swallowed all of it. These songs feel like little eruptions as a result, they’re all trying to reach a point of catharsis, but you can’t force catharsis.” Vocally forward and instrumentally full, the songs on Force to Reckon have a quality that feels personal, yet meant to be shared. Olive’s poetry background is prominently displayed, with carefully selected words used to craft narratives grounded in various different textures, and each part feels intentional and precise. It’s meticulously composed but not cautious. “I was trying to figure out how to express my own vulnerability, my love towards other people, in a way that felt like I was giving myself permission to do so, while accepting that loss and estrangement are inevitable,” she goes on to say. Each song reaches a climactic peak in its own way and even slower tracks on the album capture something that feels expansive, both sonically and emotionally. “I don’t know your feelings by their first name,” Olive sings emphatically on “Afraid of Horses,” an apology punctuated by a pizzicato violin echo and soft harmonies from Gia Margaret. And although the record is steeped in heavy-hearted themes, Olive often dissects those subjects using tongue-in-cheek humor: “1991 was good to you and I,” the 28-year-old deadpans at the start of upbeat opener “1990,” which traces the anxieties of adulthood back to oft-forgotten childhood memories.

PATIO SHOW: Brennan Wedl w/ Eliza Thorn

– ALL AGES- LIMITED PATIO SEATING IS FIRST COME FIRST SERVEDBRENNAN WEDLWith intention and grit, the Nashville-based indie country artist Brennan Wedl reimagines the timeless genre through the lens of gender, honesty and storytelling. Co-founder of queercore cult punk band Dazey & The Scouts, Wedl explores a departure from punk and leans into tremolo with a sound influenced by Lucinda Williams and Neil Young. ELIZA THORNEliza Thorn is an authentic blues singer from the North country who currently resides in Asheville, NC. She has travelled across the states with her guitar, collecting the rambling sounds of blues, soul, and country americana along the way. Some of her influences include Patsy Cline, Gram Parsons, and Jimmie Rodgers. Her sultry sound will take you to a place unknown, yet warm and familiar.

Archers of Loaf

– ALL AGES- STANDING ROOM ONLYARCHERS OF LOAFAs sculpted shards of guitar—tumbling, tolling, squalling—shower the jittery bounce of a piano on opener “Human,” it’s obvious that Reason in Decline, Archers of Loaf’s first album in 24 years, will be more than a nostalgic, low-impact reboot. When they emerged from North Carolina’s ’90s indie-punk incubator, the Archers’ hurtling, sly, gloriously dissonant roar was a mythologized touchstone of slacker-era refusal. But this, the distilled shudder of “Human” (as in “It’s hard to be human / When only death can set you free”), is an entirely different noise. In fact, it’s a startling revelation. A few distinctions between 2022 Archers and the Clinton-era crew—whose “South Carolina” could be heard blaring out of Jordan Catalano’s car radio on ABC teen-angst epic My So-Called Life. First, guitarists Eric Bachmann and Eric Johnson, once headstrong smartasses inciting a series of artful pileups on the band’s four studio albums and EP, are now a fluidly complementary, sonically advanced unit. Notably, Johnson’s signature trebly lines peal clearly above the din instead of struggling to be heard. Second, singer-songwriter Bachmann, after throat surgery, relearned how to sing (this time from his diaphragm); as a result, he no longer howls like the angriest head cold on the Eastern Seaboard. And now, his lyrics balance righteous wrath with a complex tangle of adult perspective. He still spits bile, but it’s less likely to concern scene politics, music trends, or shady record labels thwarting the dreams of a young rock band.Bachmann puts it bluntly: “What I really think about going back to the Archers and doing a new record is that the three other members of this band are awesome. It’s not about responding to the past or whatever our bullshit legacy is. I just wanted to work with these guys because I knew the chemistry we had and that we still have. I knew that was rare. I didn’t care what it ended up sounding like.”Archers of Loaf’s first tour of duty ended after 1998’s White Trash Heroes. The album did not raise the band’s once touted commercial roof, and the members—Bachmann, Johnson, bassist Matt Gentling, and drummer Mark Price—were a bedraggled bunch of coulda-beens. Price was unable to play without extreme pain due to carpal tunnel syndrome. Bachmann itched to try a different musical approach. Everyone was tapped out in one way or another. Though the four remained good friends and convened for occasional reunion gigs (to support Merge’s 2011–12 album reissues, for instance), they never worked on new music. Gentling had joined Band of Horses; Johnson, now a criminal defense attorney in Asheville, North Carolina, contributed guitar to projects when he had the time. On his own, Bachmann thrived, releasing 11 albumsof atmospheric, folky rock/pop under his own name or “group” moniker Crooked Fingers. In recent years, he’d toured as a sideman/foil for torch-country star Neko Case. opener: WE HAVE IGNITION

LATE SHOW: Illiterate Light

– ALL AGES- STANDING ROOM ONLYILLITERATE LIGHTIlliterate Light has been stretching boundaries and upending expectations with a captivating blend of soaring indie rock, swirling psychedelia, and atmospheric folk that calls to mind everything from Neil Young and My Morning Jacket to Fleet Foxes and Band of Horses. Recorded with producers Adrian Olsen (Foxygen, Natalie Prass) and Vance Powell (Jack White, Kings Of Leon, Chris Stapleton), the record is blissful andecstatic, with a mix of raw electric guitars, propulsive drums, and shimmering harmonies that showcases the band’s remarkable live setup—Gorman plays guitar with his hands and synth bass with his feet, while his musical partner, Jake Cochran, plays a standup drum kit, which captures the scintillating energy that’s fueled their journey.Gorman and Cochran first met while attending college in Harrisonburg, VA, where they discovered a shared passion for sustainable living and community building. After graduation, they took over a local organic farm, spending their days tending crops and working farmer’s markets and their nights performing anywhere they could land (or make) a gig. Dubbing themselves the Petrol Free Jubilee Carnival Tour, the pair wouldoften tour the region on their bikes, sometimes joined by as many as two-dozen other cyclists and artists, performing at coffee houses, street corners, rock clubs, and off-the-grid communities.Hailed as “a perfect addition to your summertime playlist” by NPR, the band honed in on their distinctive sound and identity over years of relentless touring, earning dates along the way with the likes of Shakey Graves, Rayland Baxter, Mt. Joy, Rainbow Kitten Surprise, Futurebirds, and The Head and The Heart in addition to high-profile festival slots at Bonnaroo, Lollapalooza, Newport Folk, and more.DOGWOOD TALESOut of the Shenandoah Valley blossoms the debut album from Dogwood Tales Too Hard To Tell. Recorded at the Fidelitorium in North Carolina (Wilco, Avett Brothers, Mandolin Orange) on 2 inch analogue tape, this organic Americana/Alt-Country record hits like a contemporary take on Neil Young’s Harvest. In 2016 they released an EP and toured heavily building a strong fan base. This promising debut full-length is sure to expand on the solid foundation they’ve built over the past few years.  Benjamin Ryan and Kyle Grim are the duo behind Dogwood Tales. They began playing together in high school and became friends playing in pop-punk bands in bordering towns. Naturally they cultivated a more roots oriented pallet, echoing the classic sounds of their home in the Valley. Their discovery of the great country duos of Gillian Welch and Dave Rawlings, Gram Parsons and Emmy Lou Harris and more recently Mandolin Orange gave them a broader view of the valley music they would set out to create.   The Tales’ songs have a spiritual aspect that derives more from the Blue Ridge Mountains than the Church. Their lyricism grows out of a serious commitment to literature and specifically the Southern-Gothic canon. Too Hard To Tell carries the weighted stories and one-liners often found in the songs of American folk music with a special attention to tone and emotion. The songs speak of scenarios and heavy stations of life and death in small town America.

PATIO SHOW: Ivy Eld (Album Release Show)

– ALL AGES- LIMITED PATIO SEATINGIVY ELDIvy Eld’s music dances in the land of paradox. Her voice is simultaneously angelic and rawly human, fiery and red-wine smooth. Her evocative and tender songwriting invites listeners to dive in quickly and deeply, piercing weary hearts and enshrouding them with the fierce love and witnessing they desire and deserve. Her vulnerable, heartfelt lyrics soar through the air on the wings of her transcendent, soulful voice.    A mental health professional for over a decade and a half, Ivy has been privy to the sacred inner worlds of thousands of souls (while navigating her own inner hallways, dark attics, and sun-lit living rooms). This rich interpersonal and intrapersonal experience and her curiosity about the internal landscape saturates her songs. She longs for her music to be an oasis of healing and beauty, a call to deeper respect and compassion for ourselves and for humanity, and also just some plain old fun for the ears. As a solo artist, her shows are intimate, playful, and deep. And when accompanied by her band, her songs become even more layered and potent with the backdrop of rich rhythms and moody, electric sounds.    Ivy considers her music to be another facet of how she shows up in the world in authentic and passionate service— both as a musician and as a therapist. She hopes her thoughtful, earthy, poetic songs will inspire others to look inside—light, shadows, and all—and come home to their deeply worthy selves.

PATIO SHOW: Corey Parlamento & Claire Hoke

– ALL AGES- LIMITED PATIO SEATINGCOREY PARLAMENTOCorey Parlamento is a solo guitarist and songwriter living in Asheville, NC. His songs blend elements of traditional songwriting with more experimental and neo-classical compositions. Being heavily influenced by film music, Parlamento’s songs and performances are immersive in their instrumentation, allowing a world to be built around personal and abstract narrative.CLAIRE HOKEClaire Hoke is a singer songwriter born and raised on North Carolina land and music. She’s been performing around WNC since 2018 in various groupings and these days finds herself settling into playing her tunes solo. Drawing inspiration from artists like James Taylor, Joni Mitchell, and Sarah Jarosz, Claire weaves her innermost musings into the fabric of her fingerstyle and open tuning driven music. She uses songwriting to express things that are honest, uncomfortable, and sometimes left unsaid

PATIO SHOW: The Trusty Hucksters

– ALL AGES- LIMITED PATIO SEATINGTHE TRUSTY HUCKSTERSThe Trusty Hucksters are from North Carolina, Massachusetts, Florida, the Great Expanse of the Universe, and Under Your Own Bed. They crawl out and they beam down to perform that tasty Tango from Tartarus, that Swing Jazz from Alcatraz, that Mambo from Below. Throw in another dollar and you’ve got that Vaudeville from the Hills, a Rock and Roll Rigamarole that you can’t get at your local vegetable stand. Two for a buck, three for five dollars!