Tonight, Tonight: Elephant Six Holiday Extravaganza at The Loft, Ice Cube at House of Blues, Eisley at Good Records and Kevin So at Poor David's Pub
A very eclectic Tuesday evening of music is on hand tonight -- one that features some serious old-school rap and an all-star band nearly too big for its venue, along with a local favorite playing a free show and a quality Nashville songwriter stopping by for the night.
Elephant Six Holiday Extravaganza at The Loft
Jeff Mangum, the man behind Neutral Milk Hotel, is also among the masterminds behind the Elephant 6 collective. As such, Mangum has put together the behemoth known as the Elephant 6 Holiday Extravaganza, which features players Will Cullen Hart, Bill Doss, Peter Erchick, John Fernandes, Julian Koster, Scott Spillane, Andrew Rieger, Laura Carter, Derek Almstead, Heather McIntosh, Bryan Poole, Theo Hilton, Robbie Cucchiaro and others playing the music of The Olivia Tremor Control, Elf Power, Circulatory System, Neutral Milk Hotel, The Gerbils, Nana Grizol, Major Organ and Adding Machine, Pipes You See and Pipes You Don't. Basically, this is the label's entire roster having a hell of a time playing songs you've heard many a time. Supposedly, the evening will also include films, games and other surprises. The only question is whether or not the stage at The Loft can support the entire assembly.
Ice Cube, Johnny Ringo and Dem Southernfolkz at House of Blues
Back in the day, before he became an actor, when Ice Cube was part of the legendary rap outfit NWA, there may not have been a more intimidating presence in all of hip-hop. His menacing scowl and street thug mannerisms fit perfectly with his violent lyrical themes. As a solo act, Ice Cube's intensity wavered slightly as he incorporated new ideas and instrumentation into his always catchy hip-hop. Of course, then he became an actor and music became a secondary concern. Ice Cube's 2010 effort, I Am The West, would seem to be the guy's response to middle age, and it's a pretty terrific record that shows that even a 41-year-old can still bring the gangsta intensity.
Eisley at Good Records
Back in November, right after Eisley formally signed with Equal Vision Records in the wake of its split with Reprise/Warner Bros., Daniel Hopkins took an intimate look into the band's struggles and changes in recent years, leading up to today's release of the band's third full-length and first in four years, The Valley. Now, after touring the country to promote the new release, the band returns to the region, rewarding local fans by performing a free in-store show at Good Records. The show starts at 6 p.m. And, on that note, we recommend you head that-a-way now, as this sucker's sure to be well-attended.
Kevin So at Poor David's Pub
Now residing in Nashville, Kevin So is a sensitive singer-songwriter who feels equally at home playing folk, blues or soul. Praised by the likes of Billy Bragg, Amos Lee and Richie Havens, So plays in an enjoyable style that goes well with coffee and cheesecake. Although slick and relatively safe, songs such as "The Ballad of Amy Xu" and "A Brighter Day" show a guy with good compositional skills and a nice, friendly vibe. Sometimes, it's OK when music is easy to listen to.