IPO Detroit 2017
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Artists From Detroit
Almost Free – A delay-driven, alternative rock power trio who fashion a substantially foreboding sound that covers various elements underneath the neat, but broad umbrella of alternative music. For Almost Free, living life to the fullest while realizing that every single decision and action has a price is a sublime feeling to express through their blend of grungy guitars, progressive hooks and upbeat drumming. Fans of The Smiths or Bloc Party should check them out!
The Badways – A band who do their pop/rock with just a touch of bubblegum, garage and glam like no other! If KISS had a party and invited Bachman Turner Overdrive and The Ramones to jam with them, it might sound something like this. Motor City Rock n’Roll, Baby!
Mike Burlett – LA’s loss is definitely Detroit’s gain as one of the main men from Maryz Eyez and Trenchtown has returned to his Detroit roots, and is whipping up his dynamic brand of pop rock under his own name! Expect a mixture of power pop, indie rock, ska, and soul blended into some of the catchiest hooks around!
Gregory Curvey from The Luck of Eden Hall – Long known as a fixture on the Chicago scene as a swirling guitar-jangling psychedelic rock experience in the tradition of King Crimson, Cream, The Beatles, and The Dukes of Stratosphear, et al, The Luck of Eden Hall released nine full-length albums and garnered much well-deserved industry praise on their road to world-wide pysch-pop domination! As a solo artist now living in Detroit, Curvey can still jingle and jangle with the best of ‘em, but in a much more intimate way…come out and give him a big Detroit welcome!
The Dives – Taking cues from their past lives in The Junk Monkeys, The Black Mollies, and The Sunday Painters, as well as great rock and punk band influences including The Stones, The Who, The Clash, The Stooges, and The MC5, The Dives have crafted a sound that weaves driving riffs and compelling, sometimes irreverent lyrics into a gritty but honest musical tapestry that is distinctly rock ‘n roll. The songs on their debut album, Magnificent Desolation, are proof that rock isn’t dead, and that sometimes all you need is three guys and a great hook! Their sophomore release, House Caught Fire, is currently in mastering, and we can hardly wait to hear it!
Matt Fig – Hailing from the suburb of Wyandotte, Fig (and his latest band, The Disappointments) combines the in-your-face rock n’ roll influence of Aerosmith with hooky slightly self-deprecating power pop in the best tradition of artists such as Robbie Rist and Fountains of Wayne! Fig (the man minus band) did many shows with Enuff Z’nuff; how cool is that?? Whether solo or plus band, Fig is one performer you will not want to miss!
The Garden Party – If you like classic rock n’ roll and jangle pop harmonies, you will love The Garden Party! Their 2013 Tennessee album combines influences from such greats as The Beatles, The Beach Boys, Roy Orbison, and The Kinks to name but a few! We can hardly wait to see them do their thing again live at IPO!
John Holk & The Sequins – Don’t let the embroidered pants, bolo tie, boots and cowboy hat fool you – although Holk and his band do have a strong country influence, the songs on their debut If You See Her and recently released Where You Going CDs are full of stick in your head hooks, jangly breezy melodies, sneaky chord changes and harmonies that fans of pure power pop and psychedelic pop are sure to appreciate! If Hank Williams, The Byrds, or Big Star are your cup of tea, you will want to know John Holk & The Sequins!
LIN-SAY – Detroit is known for Motown Records, but if Lin-Say has anything to do with it, someday soon it will be known for NuMotown. That’s what she is calling her brand of upbeat soulful pop songs that get stuck in your head. Think Amy Winehouse, Etta James, and The Righteous Brothers rolled into one…or better yet, pick up a copy of her debut LP, Shut Up and Pick Me Up, and come to her IPO Showcase!
Nick Piunti – His debut CD, 13 In My Head, flew to the top of many a “Best Of” list in 2013, and he hasn’t slowed down since! His latest release, Trust Your Instincts, has everything a power pop fan could wish for: adult alternative songs that hit hard in the hooks department, bubblegum handclaps, and bits of glam and orchestration to complement his penchant for melodies rooted in the ‘60s and ‘70s. All this, plus Piunti’s lyrical observations – which rise to anthemic pop levels on this one – make him a perennial IPO favorite!
Jeremy Porter & The Tucos – Part power-pop-rock (like Cheap Trick, Hüsker Dü and X), part whiskey-soaked twang (like Uncle Tupelo, Gram Parsons and Waylon Jennings), Jeremy Porter & The Tucos are Detroit rock ‘n roll…even if Detroit isn’t quite ready for it! Luckily, IPO is ready, and we can’t wait to see them…check out a copy of their latest EP, Barrel of Tears, to hear why!
The Pounders – If you like high energy pop with a dash of jangle, you will LOVE The Pounders! Their sound draws comparisons to everyone from Elvis Costello to The Who to The Romantics and MC5, and their CD, You And What Army?, will also appeal to fans of Tom Petty and Neil Young. The Pounders live show is a musical experience not to be missed…and word on the street is they’ve got some new tunes in store to unveil this year at their IPO showcase, so don’t miss it!
Chris Richards & The Subtractions – Richards is a veteran of several cool Detroit bands, including The Noel Redding Experience, The Phenomenal Cats and The Pantookas. The band’s latest album, A Smattering of Mystery and Sound, is chock full of the soaring hooks, shimmering guitars and sweet melodies for which they have long been known (and loved by power pop fans the world over)! We’re always glad to see them, and you will be too!
The Romeo Flynns – Heavily influenced by the British invasion of the ‘60s, a time when it was all about the song, they learned how to do one thing well: compose songs that people want to hear! Combining their British influences with a sound reminiscent of the power pop scene of Detroit in the ‘80s, The Romeo Flynns’ latest CD, Masque of Anarchy, is a perfect example of what Detroit power pop once was and is once again!
The Starfire Band – A group of high school buddies drawn together by their love of hard rock and bands like Alice Cooper, Bad Company, Aerosmith, and Led Zeppelin. Today they draw the inspiration for their music from Detroit’s deep musical roots, writing and performing tunes inspired by The Beatles, Cheap Trick, Marshall Crenshaw, Raspberries, and Eric Carmen, characterized by good melodies and flowing chord progressions, as exemplified by the songs on their latest CD, Livin’ in the City.
The Sugar Clouds – Blending psychedelia with synth loops and quirky pop hooks, wrapped in an ambient shoegazer layer of fuzz, they are quite aptly named, as their music will make you feel like you are floating away on a cloud of sweet electronic pop confection. Check out their latest CD, Partners Don’t Do That (They Watch and Be Amazed), and you’ll hear what we mean!
Yellow Paint – A soulful indie-rock trio from Livonia who offer a succulent blend of self deprecation and fun, upbeat tunes! Fans of artists from Fleetwood Mac to Jewel and Amy Winehouse will dig their debut EP, Feels Better!
U.S. Artists From Outside of Detroit
The JetBeats – A band on a mission to bring back the excitement from the high energy live shows of the early 60’s Beat Music era, The JetBeats seamlessly belt out British Invasion, rockabilly, and R&B classics from 1957 to 1965 alongside their own original tunes in the same vintage style. Their debut EP, Sonic Boom Boom, features seven of their best originals, and will certainly appeal to any fan of Merseybeat!
Leisure McCorkle and The Empire of Sound – We’re always grateful when this gentleman makes his way to IPO (several of them!) all the way from Charlotte, North Carolina, and doubly grateful when he’s able to assemble a kick-ass local band to back him! Fans of Joe Jackson and Graham Parker will love his sturdy rock ‘n roll, as he possesses a voice so strong that he really doesn’t need a microphone! Check out his classic CD, Jet Set Baby, and you’ll know what I’m talkin’ about, and get ready to check out a brand new one, which may even be available by the time of his IPO Detroit showcase!
Drew Neely & The Heroes – Neely has long been a fan favorite at IPO Chicago for his quirky brand of power pop with folk-pop-styled story-teller lyrics, punk pop sensibilities, and sticky hooks. With his current band, The Heroes, he takes his penchant for intelligent lyrics and catchy melody to a whole ‘nother level! Watch for their forthcoming album, This Could Be You, due out soon!
Paranoid Lovesick – Thanks to the success of bands like Teenage Fanclub and The Posies—and the renewed interest in Alex Chilton and Big Star—power-pop was the flavor of the moment in the early to mid-nineties, and it didn’t get much poppier than Paranoid Lovesick! They came out to LA to play the first ever IPO in 1998, for which we will forever be grateful. Although guitarist Rick McBrien sadly passed away in 2003, we are honored that main men Bill Stone and John Potwora put on a special reunion/CD release in 2009 for IPO Cleveland, and are putting together another one for this year’s IPO Detroit! A truly special band and a special show you will not want to miss!
Dave Rave – He began popping very powerfully indeed a near quarter century ago as part of the legendary Canadian bands Teenage Head and The Shakers, and has often been referred to as “The Canadian Nick Lowe.” A recent CD, Live With What You Know, was nominated for a Grammy, as was one of its songs, “Anne Marie.” In addition to being one of the most entertaining and hardworking power poppers around, he’s also extremely versatile, often displaying his jazzy/bluesy side on several collaborations with fellow Canadian singer/songwriter, Mark McCarron, including their latest Memphis Midnight, and recently showing a flair for ‘60s inspired soft-pop jangle on Radio Rave, his latest release with The Governors! From 2010 to 2014 he played 50 IPO festivals in a row (yes, you read that right), and he still plays many of them…and we look forward to many more. Thank you, Dave!!