|Dana Buoy (Dana Janssen of Akron/Family) performs at The Pinhook|
with The Human Eyes on Wednesday, August 13
1. Dana Buoy w/ The Human Eyes at The Pinhook
Wednesday, Aug. 13
Admission: $8 (Purchase tickets here)
Fans of Sylvan Esso, the local act that's undergone a meteoric rise in 2014, will most likely be quite enamored by the sounds of Dana Buoy. Perhaps that's why the two have a tour lined up for the rest of the month (which kicks off on the 14th at Asheville's Mothlight). Oh, and it's probably notable to mention that Dana Buoy is the project of Dana Janssen, multi-instrumentalist and drummer of Akron/Family. So naturally, Dana Buoy brings together the tantalizing rhythms and enchanting melodies that one would expect from a member of Akron/Family, but it's all funneled through a sleek electro-pop wash. Buoy will be the perfect fit for local dream-pop standouts The Human Eyes, who coincidentally enough opened for Sylvan Esso's album release show. If their set back in May at Cat's Cradle was any indication, then their set on Wednesday will feature tons of incredible and energetic new material that we'll hopefully have a release date for later this year. Such a wonderfully cohesive combination of nationally and locally touring acts rarely comes together so smoothly, and it'll make a phenomenal mid-week pickup as well.
2. Local Band Local Beer w/ Lonnie Walker, See Gulls and Wild Fur at Tir Na Nog
Thursday, Aug. 14
When there's a free weekly event, it's really hard to be picky about lineups. On good nights you can check out a few impressive acts, maybe even one of your favorite locals every month or so. However, lineups like this don't come around very often, so I'd imagine that Tir Na Nog will be shoulder to shoulder throughout most of the evening for this powerhouse of a lineup. Lonnie Walker has gone from a regular local staple to an act that feels like a real treat to see out and about. With their upcoming main stage show at Hopscotch in a few weeks, I'd imagine the band will be performing a wide array of new material for the increasingly intoxicated folks at Tir Na Nog. Lonnie Walker alone is reason enough to check this free event out, their bizarre take on Americana-rock is tinged with a country twang and a Byrnian (that's now a word) blend of self-loathing and cynicism, but the lineup also features two of the most exciting local acts opening the evening. See Gulls is a female-centric group of garage rockers that come from a handful of highly esteemed locals. Sarah Fuller of The Big Picture takes over the core lyricism while Maria Albani of Schooner/Organos takes over drums while Leah Gibson of Lost in the Trees and Duncan Webster of Hammer No More The Fingers take over on guitar and bass respectively. Wild Fur kicks off the evening, another local supergroup of sorts that combines Nick Jaeger and Wylie Hunter's songwriting talents via an invigorating take on rootsy yet electronically driven tunes.
3. King Mez w/ Nance, Clevon Don, Well$ & Keaton at Lincoln Theatre
Tuesday, Aug. 12
Admission: $15 in advance/$18 at the door (Purchase tickets here)
While North Carolina gets the most attention for our constantly evolving indie rock scene, there's a whole lot to love about our local hip-hop acts as well. Folks like King Mez have been slowly but surely building up their repertoire, with a handful of mixtapes under his belt his most recent release Long Live The King has garnered unprecedented levels of national acclaim. Mez has an acrobatic sense of melody, his lyrics are as personal as they are punchline-y and perfectly tow the line between a party-starting vibe and introspective headphone music. Mez's opening acts are nothing to look over as well, Well$ is a Charlotte based emcee that's been following a similar trajectory to Mez, he's building up his local roots with continued shows and releases while his talents gain national attention as well. Mez's Raleigh shows feel few and far between now, so getting to see him at what's sure to be a packed-out Lincoln Theatre with a whole slew of talented artists on the lineup is a chance that you won't get too often.
4. Wildcat! Wildcat! w/ Marley Carroll at Local 506
Friday, Aug. 15
Admission: $10 (Purchase tickets here)
I've made few attempts at hiding my musical affinity towards Marley Carroll, he's become one of my favorite producers amidst a sea of IDM-leaning artists. Carroll is one of the genre's most versatile artists and his live set-up is something that fans of all genres can truly enjoy. Carroll has an immersive live show that blends mixing, scratching, analog synth-play and dreamy vocals to make an alluring display of talents. Wildcat! Wildcat! on the other hand is like the perfect Yin to Carroll's Yang. While Carroll is a DJ that's leapt into the indie-pop world, Wildcat! Wildcat!'s tunes are firmly rooted in standard pop sentiments while their soundscapes delve into intricately arranged electronics. It's refreshing to see the two teaming up together for a tour because they're brilliant counterpoints to one another and display the finer aspects of each genre while maintaining a comfortable middle ground for each artist's fans. If you're in the mood for a dancey, beat-driven Friday night then Local 506 is the place to be this weekend.
5. Miniature Tigers w/ The Griswolds & Finish Ticket at Cat's Cradle Backroom
Wednesday, Aug. 13
Admission: $12 in advance/$14 at the door (Purchase tickets here)
So maybe dancey electronic tunes and heady dream-pop isn't your thing. If so, I'm not quite sure why but I'll pretend to not silently judge you over here. If Dana Buoy isn't in the cards for you, or perhaps you just don't want to make the drive to Durham on a Wednesday night, then Cat's Cradle Backroom has one of the most agreeable lineups of the week. Miniature Tigers are a fairly middle of the road indie pop band that has some incredibly catchy tunes, and now that they've got a hefty amount of albums under their belt there's sure to be plenty of tracks that catch your ear throughout the evening.