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washington

Kodaline and Good Old War played a killer show at Baltimore Soundstage, 9/20

One crisp Sunday evening in September found a crowded music hall moving to the same mystifying jams of two great bands. Dozens of concert-goers crowded into Baltimore Soundstage to hear the dulcet tones of Good Old War and the Irish-inflected rock of Kodaline. The show was an experience to behold, from the lights to the guitar changes. Originally from the City of Brotherly Love, Good Old War’s act heavily featured just that: brotherly love, or, more accurately, bro love. Keith Goodwin, one of the two guitarist-vocalists, and drummer Tim Arnold shared a precious moment of friendship onstage, evoking warm and fuzzy from the audience. Throughout the set, Goodwin displayed dazzling showmanship via his lanky, unconventional dance moves and commitment to interacting with the audience, not to mention his voice, which rang like a better, cleaner version of Bob Dylan. Guitarist-vocalist Dan Schwartz pumped up the audience with his endless energy and dynamic playing, while Arnold’s good vibes were infectious and his drumming premium. It’s a shame their set was only half an hour long. Headlining and hailing from Dublin, Kodaline brought own brand of mind-blowing rock to the stage. Changing guitars with every song and engaging with the audience’s cravings for a good show, this indie quartet played with great versatility within and between songs, rocking hard and fast alternately with slow, romantic melodies. Frontman Steve Garrigan is the epitome of his role, commanding wide range of instrumental skill and a set of pipes that can replace half a church choir. From start to finish, Kodaline grips the audience’s attention and doesn’t disappoint, sharing intimate moments of emotion and musicality.

 

 

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Eau Claire treated DC Daybreaker to top-notch DJing and plays Rock & Roll Hotel, 9/19

This autumn was kicked off perfectly as the incredibly popular, early-morning sensation Daybreaker made a triumphant return to DC on Wednesday, 9/16, bringing DC nu disco DJ Eau Claire to the turntable to treat the early risers to some great jams while they got their yoga and dance on. This sunrise shindig was full of happy people looking to have a party before work and it couldn’t have been better. Eau Claire’s mixes are fresh and make you wanna dance until you drop. Hosting at the Flash nightclub, this DJ of DC brought great energy to Daybreaker and you can catch her next performance at the H Street Festival in the Rock & Roll Hotel, 9/19. Keep your eyes peeled for the next Daybreaker event, as it’s sure to create more fun than you can imagine having at 7 in the morning. -Jonathan Goodwin

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Chesapeake's The Hunts to play Landmark Music Festival, 9/26

Seven siblings with names that all start with J and radio-ready musical talent is what you’ll find when you listen to The Hunts. Hailing from Chesapeake, VA, this septet masterfully dots their Americana-folk sound with elements of pop, indie, and alt, creating a textured and harmonic mosaic for your ears. Overlapping vocals and cheerfully plucked strings give way to drumbeats and quick violining. Catch an old hit of theirs below and check out their new LP Those Younger Days. They’ll be sharing their heartwarming set on 9/26 at the Landmark Music Festival in DC. -Jonathan Goodwin

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Richmond psych rock band California Death set to jam at Strange Matter, 9/26

When looking for a new jam with high energy and trippy vocals, apply California Death directly to the eardrums. This quartet out of Richmond makes a great addition to a road trip playlist or a good beach party jam with their masterful use of vamping, pedal switches, and using the vocals as an instrument. Give them a listen and get lost in the hypnotic flow of their music; their self-titled EP out last March is over before you know it. They’re playing the underground haven known as Strange Matter on 9/26, so don’t miss it! -Jonathan Goodwin

 

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Celtic rock group Scythian hosts inaugural festival, Appaloosa, and promotes new LP, Old Tin Can

Long established in the Washington music scene, Celtic-Gypsy-folk rockers Scythian have turned a vision into a reality, organizing, hosting, and playing a festival of their own design. For many families in the Shenandoah Valley area and for many from across the country, this Labor Day weekend was made much sweeter by attending Appaloosa, a roots music festival that met its mission statement with great success: "Music Among Friends." Featured on NPR and The Washington Post, the experience was nothing to simply drive past. It was small in scale, but the energy and enthusiasm of the audience, the performers, the volunteers and vendors was one of welcoming and family. A family-friendly festival set in a scenic ranch resort just outside of Front Royal, VA, Appaloosa was something to behold.

Dan Fedoryka, Scythian's own rhythm guitarist-vocalist-accordionist, related his experiences organizing the festival and playing full-time in the band for a decade. As has been the focus of their Kickstarter-fueled albums, the band's focus is on their fans, giving them memorable experiences through their shows, music, and now Appaloosa. When planning a concert, Fedoryka's priority is to spare no expense and give people the party of a lifetime, a philosophy that has inspired several weddings between Scythian fans and developed a widespread, dedicated following. A tenth of Appaloosa's profits are being given to charities, mostly local to Front Royal, the hometown of the Fedoryka brothers and gracious hosts to the festival. The whole affair was lively and exciting, featuring local, small business vendors and acts from all over the country and musical spectrum, which were purposefully chosen to reflect Scythian's breadth of sound. While the festival may be over, the spirit it brought will surely last the listeners until next year, which all are urged to attend. With a year to plan, Fedoryka is excited and optimistic about growing the festival and expanding its role in the community.

To top off the work behind Appaloosa, Scythian is also touring to support their new album, Old Tin Can, and will play some unannounced shows later this fall in DC at the Howard Theatre and the 9:30. Check out their music and mark Labor Day weekend 2016 as booked for Appaloosa! -Jonathan Goodwin

 

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