The 2013 Riverfront Times Music Showcase is this weekend! Think of it as St. Louis music's own official holiday and consider this the season. Throughout May we at RFT Music have been working hard to make our cases for all 130 bands and artists nominated for an RFT Music Award this year in 26 categories. Read on and get yourself acquainted, and we'll see you at the showcase! Check out this post for the full schedule. Then, create your own showcase schedule with this handy custom scheduler, courtesy of the fine folks at Do314.com!
Fumer shakes the brain with oppressive volume. Huge drums carry this wall of guitars via slow, sharp tempos. Fumer's landlocked rock is rife with nihilist lyrics and grunge riffs. Twenty years ago, it'd be sitting cozy in a Touch and Go Records distro, but this is 2013. At first this might evoke '90s nostalgia, but Fumer's angle feels like a proper sequel rather than a retread of worn-out songs. The vocals are delivered from the gut and sit low within the mix. The guitars are over-emphasized, and parts often drone with psychedelia. Stoner metal leaks into Fumer's rock & roll, providing a swamped and messy sound that champions timeless rock & roll spirit. -Joseph Hess
With stage names such as Moon and Johnny Venus and constant compliment fishing on its Facebook page, make no mistake that the members of Greek Fire want to be capital "R" Rock Stars. The group is certainly on the right track with its forthcoming album produced by Goldfinger's John Feldman (the same guy who gave Story of the Year's Page Avenue its sheen) and a main-stage spot at Pointfest 29. The Feldman sessions have thus far yielded the single "A Real Life," which shows the band delving further into the glam nu-metal shuffle of its fan favorite, "Doesn't Matter Anyway." -Ryan Wasoba
https://www.facebook.com/GreekFireMusic http://www.twitter.com/GREEKFIREband http://www.purevolume.com/greekfire http://www.myspace.com/greekfiremusic http://www.youtube.com/greekfiretube http://www.greekfiremusic.com http://GREEKFIRE.tumblr.com
LucaBrasi has not dropped an album since 2010's The Norris Effect, in part because its members have been too involved in extracurricular activities. The band summoned U2 for last year's An Under Cover Weekend show at the Firebird, and keyboardist Bill Reiter took part in El Monstero's massive winter residency of Pink Floyd tribute sets at the Pageant. Plus, Reiter and guitarist Jerry Jost have been a tad preoccupied since their old band, the Urge, reunited. The band recently promised a new album in the works via Facebook, and the fact that LucaBrasi continues to maintain fans and receive award nominations while staying so far below the radar is an accurate gauge of its place in the hearts of St. Louis modern rockers. -Ryan Wasoba
This year Festus alt-rock power trio Tok finally took a break from playing Lemmons just about every week to finish and release Gold Hen House Volume 1, a new EP that stands as the group's first release since 2008. Thankfully, Tok picked up right where it left off, providing the same crunchy but melodic attack and fluid shredding that it made its name on. While plenty of bands make music rooted in this '90s sound, Tok distinguishes itself from the pack by its sense of fun. Whether it's song titles such as "I Wanna Crash My Car," guitarist Bryan Basler's snake-sharming dancing or the band's affectionate parody of the folk/blues sound favored in St. Louis on "Sliding Into Misery," Tok brings a sense of levity sorely missing from today's alt-rock scene. -Bob McMahon
The sort of sprawling post-rock that MotherFather deals in is difficult to execute. Theoretically, any crew of musicians with delay pedals and attention spans can make instrumental songs in the vein of Explosions in the Sky or Mogwaii, but MotherFather excels because of its restraint and deliberation. Every brick in the band's wall of sound is purposeful, its troughs just as interesting as its crests. As if to prove how much attention to detail is required, the band has only released two songs and played two shows. However, both songs are gorgeous, dramatic rockers and both shows were choice opening slots: one with And So I Watch You From Afar with Zechs Marquise at the Firebird, the other with Maserati and So Many Dynamos at the Firebird. -Ryan Wasoba