club cafe

pittsburgh, pa

Operators is a Montreal based project created by Daniel Boeckner, (Wolf Parade, Handsome Furs, Divine Fits), Devojka, and Sam Brown (Divine Fits, New Bomb Turks) in 2014. The band released an EP (EP1) in 2014 and released their first LP (Blue Wave) in 2016, via Last Gang Records. Operators supported these releases with a series of international tours across North America, and Europe. Like Handsome Furs, Operators’ music has resonated particularly well with Eastern European audiences. The band has been well received across clubs and premier festivals, such as Primavera (where they were asked to play two years in a row - something that is usually unheard of).

While recording their sophomore LP, the members of the band kept busy with a series of other endeavours, including the promotional cycle around Wolf Parade’s Cry Cry Cry LP, a series of performances in which Operators played material from the Handsome Furs catalog (which all sold out in less than six hours), and Boeckner’s original song for the critically acclaimed 2018 film Mandy.

Radiant Dawn will be released in May 2019 via Last Gang Records. The album's nine tracks meld raw analog hardware with Boeckner's distinct voice to create an immersive cinematic sound. Interspersed between the tracks are instrumental intertitles that amplify the album’s 1970s sci-fi dystopian feel. For fans of Boeckner’s catalogue, Radiant Dawn feels like the next logical step in the artist’s two-decade career, while maintaining a completely fresh energy.

Radiant Dawn was written and recorded throughout 2018 and early 2019 in Montreal and Vancouver Island. Arcade Fire’s Tim Kingsbury played bass on the album’s closing track. The album was mixed by Wolf Parade's Arlen Thompson, as well as up and coming Montreal engineer Napster Vertigo (who also produced the album). The album was mastered by the Lodge’s Emily Lazar (on the heels of her 2019 Grammy award win).

Operators is a Montreal based project created by Daniel Boeckner, (Wolf Parade, Handsome Furs, Divine Fits), Devojka, and Sam Brown (Divine Fits, New Bomb Turks) in 2014. The band released an EP (EP1) in 2014 and released their first LP (Blue Wave) in 2016, via Last Gang Records. Operators supported these releases with a series of international tours across North America, and Europe. Like Handsome Furs, Operators’ music has resonated particularly well with Eastern European audiences. The band has been well received across clubs and premier festivals, such as Primavera (where they were asked to play two years in a row - something that is usually unheard of).

While recording their sophomore LP, the members of the band kept busy with a series of other endeavours, including the promotional cycle around Wolf Parade’s Cry Cry Cry LP, a series of performances in which Operators played material from the Handsome Furs catalog (which all sold out in less than six hours), and Boeckner’s original song for the critically acclaimed 2018 film Mandy.

Radiant Dawn will be released in May 2019 via Last Gang Records. The album's nine tracks meld raw analog hardware with Boeckner's distinct voice to create an immersive cinematic sound. Interspersed between the tracks are instrumental intertitles that amplify the album’s 1970s sci-fi dystopian feel. For fans of Boeckner’s catalogue, Radiant Dawn feels like the next logical step in the artist’s two-decade career, while maintaining a completely fresh energy.

Radiant Dawn was written and recorded throughout 2018 and early 2019 in Montreal and Vancouver Island. Arcade Fire’s Tim Kingsbury played bass on the album’s closing track. The album was mixed by Wolf Parade's Arlen Thompson, as well as up and coming Montreal engineer Napster Vertigo (who also produced the album). The album was mastered by the Lodge’s Emily Lazar (on the heels of her 2019 Grammy award win).

SUREFIRE 'Who We Are' 2019 Singles Compilation Release with Special Guest Revival Choir

Harptoberfest 2019 - Presented by the Blues Society of Western Pennsylvania. Featuring The Jimmy Adler Band with Jack Sanso, Dr. Blue, Marc Reisman & Hosted by Charlie Barath

Mark your calendars, Harp Lovers, for Harptoberfest 2019!
This popular event, sponsored by the Blues Society of Western Pennsylvania, returns for its fourth year and promises an evening packed full of great Harmonica-Driven Blues performed by some of this area's best Harp Players!
Three great harp slingers will each bring a set of their best stuff to the stage at Club Cafe, backed by the Jimmy Adler Blues Band, before joining forces for an action packed finale!
Your MC for the evening will be Charlie Barath.

Mark your calendars, Harp Lovers, for Harptoberfest 2019!
This popular event, sponsored by the Blues Society of Western Pennsylvania, returns for its fourth year and promises an evening packed full of great Harmonica-Driven Blues performed by some of this area's best Harp Players!
Three great harp slingers will each bring a set of their best stuff to the stage at Club Cafe, backed by the Jimmy Adler Blues Band, before joining forces for an action packed finale!
Your MC for the evening will be Charlie Barath.

Tyrone Wells - The Lift Me Up Tour with Special Guest Dan Rodriguez

Tyrone Wells still sort of chuckles to himself when he thinks about the fact that making music is his “job." He has been at this “job" for well over a decade, and is just now beginning to shake off the discomfort and stress of the days when he had a real job (TJ Maxx - lead of the ladies department in Spokane, WA). As far as jobs go, Tyrone feels like he has won the lottery (in regards to his present “job”). He loves to create music. He loves to perform. He is a husband, and a father of 3 daughters. He has four sisters, so he feels right at home being completely outnumbered by the ladies in his present household (and also when he was the lead of the ladies dept at TJ Maxx). He believes that Jesus is for real. He’s writing this bio. He’s referring to himself in the third person. He knows that this bio has a ring of sarcasm, but he is dead serious. He feels extremely grateful. He jokes around, but he has worked very hard at making music his “job." He has spent countless hours writing, recording, playing live, and traveling to play live again. He has spent time away from his beloved family to make this thing a reality. He has never really experienced much radio success, so his fans have been gained the old fashioned way, by pouring his heart out on a stage, and by word of mouth. He feels certain that he will make music until his dying day, as it is not only gratifying for him to create, but also therapeutic and necessary. He can’t believe you’re still reading this… if you are still reading this, he wants to thank you for taking the time to do so, and for supporting what he does. He knows it would be impossible without you.

A couple stat lines that my managers think might impress you:
-Over 65 Million Spotify Streams
-55,000+ Albums sold Independently
-400,000+ Singles sold Independently
-Over 75 placements in film/tv including “American Idol,” “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Odd Life of Timothy Green,” “Something Borrowed,” “Vampire Diaries,” “One Tree Hill,” “Private Practice,” and more.
-Roll With It: #6 Billboard Heatseekers Albums Debut
-Where We Meet: #1 iTunes Singer Songwriter album and Top Ten iTunes overall
-This Love: #2 iTunes Singer Songwriter album
-Metal & Wood: #1 iTunes Singer Songwriter album
-Released two major label albums with Universal Republic Records

Tyrone Wells still sort of chuckles to himself when he thinks about the fact that making music is his “job." He has been at this “job" for well over a decade, and is just now beginning to shake off the discomfort and stress of the days when he had a real job (TJ Maxx - lead of the ladies department in Spokane, WA). As far as jobs go, Tyrone feels like he has won the lottery (in regards to his present “job”). He loves to create music. He loves to perform. He is a husband, and a father of 3 daughters. He has four sisters, so he feels right at home being completely outnumbered by the ladies in his present household (and also when he was the lead of the ladies dept at TJ Maxx). He believes that Jesus is for real. He’s writing this bio. He’s referring to himself in the third person. He knows that this bio has a ring of sarcasm, but he is dead serious. He feels extremely grateful. He jokes around, but he has worked very hard at making music his “job." He has spent countless hours writing, recording, playing live, and traveling to play live again. He has spent time away from his beloved family to make this thing a reality. He has never really experienced much radio success, so his fans have been gained the old fashioned way, by pouring his heart out on a stage, and by word of mouth. He feels certain that he will make music until his dying day, as it is not only gratifying for him to create, but also therapeutic and necessary. He can’t believe you’re still reading this… if you are still reading this, he wants to thank you for taking the time to do so, and for supporting what he does. He knows it would be impossible without you.

A couple stat lines that my managers think might impress you:
-Over 65 Million Spotify Streams
-55,000+ Albums sold Independently
-400,000+ Singles sold Independently
-Over 75 placements in film/tv including “American Idol,” “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Odd Life of Timothy Green,” “Something Borrowed,” “Vampire Diaries,” “One Tree Hill,” “Private Practice,” and more.
-Roll With It: #6 Billboard Heatseekers Albums Debut
-Where We Meet: #1 iTunes Singer Songwriter album and Top Ten iTunes overall
-This Love: #2 iTunes Singer Songwriter album
-Metal & Wood: #1 iTunes Singer Songwriter album
-Released two major label albums with Universal Republic Records

Electric Six with Special Guest DaveTV

The Devil has always been there. He is the great outsider, the original iconoclast. He is a conniving little shit and never seems to tire of giving humanity a wedgie or a wet willie just for a laugh. The Devil is capable of taking many forms. He can exist as one being or spread out amongst many. He can present himself as an ordinary man or as a horrific cloven-hoofed beast depending on his mood. Above all else, The Devil lives to corrupt, to adulterate, to defile.



Electric Six has often used The Devil as subject matter for its songs because of that last bit, the part about corruption and adulteration. That’s what Electric Six has been trying to do with its music now for quite some time!!!! We want to corrupt young women….just like The Devil!!! There’s nothing more rewarding than the seduction of a young innocent maiden, forcing her to wear demonic dresses, levitating her towards the great fiery skull and watching her eyes turn black as she gives into evil and becomes the bride of The Devil!!!! That….is why we started this band….to help women realize their potential as sexy evil maidens with eyes reflecting the utter darkness of a corrupted soul.



With its fourteenth studio album Bride of the Devil, Electric Six examines the concepts of evil and corruption, humanity’s various falls from grace, the nine circles of purgatory and of course, the internet itself. Bride of the Devil opens with the thunderous opener “The Opener”, a bombastic celebration of the arena rock Electric Six never got to play. The next two numbers are textbook ear worm guitar pop numbers that deal with debilitating income inequality and nepotism (“Daddy’s Boy”) and the horrors of being forced into a pool of toxic waste by an a rabid Doberman trained to kill (“(It Gets) (A Little) Jumpy”).



And then we get to the title track, a radio anthem, where it all becomes clear that The Devil is a metaphor for Russia and the United States is the young girl who is seduced, corrupted and wedded into a Satanic covenant with the beast. It’s all there in black and white. The Carrie Underwood-esque lyrics alongside a backdrop of vodka and caviar and backchannels and Seychllian bank accounts. That’s how they did it. They went after our country performers and got the rubes to feel good about being Russian assets. And still, it is the feel-good anthem of the summer.



Finally, the haunting album closer “Worm In the Wood” is Electric Six at its most serious, most tender and emotional. Haunting. Effervescent. Corrupt. Jaundiced. Tired.



So there you have it. Electric Six is back with its fourteenth record and it’s poppy and feel-good, as well as heavy, both sonically and lyrically. Our sound will corrupt you and enslave you as the beautiful demonic bride you know you truly are. Fraulein, take this severed hand with it’s creepy long nails from the beginning of time. To do so is truly thine destiny.

The Devil has always been there. He is the great outsider, the original iconoclast. He is a conniving little shit and never seems to tire of giving humanity a wedgie or a wet willie just for a laugh. The Devil is capable of taking many forms. He can exist as one being or spread out amongst many. He can present himself as an ordinary man or as a horrific cloven-hoofed beast depending on his mood. Above all else, The Devil lives to corrupt, to adulterate, to defile.



Electric Six has often used The Devil as subject matter for its songs because of that last bit, the part about corruption and adulteration. That’s what Electric Six has been trying to do with its music now for quite some time!!!! We want to corrupt young women….just like The Devil!!! There’s nothing more rewarding than the seduction of a young innocent maiden, forcing her to wear demonic dresses, levitating her towards the great fiery skull and watching her eyes turn black as she gives into evil and becomes the bride of The Devil!!!! That….is why we started this band….to help women realize their potential as sexy evil maidens with eyes reflecting the utter darkness of a corrupted soul.



With its fourteenth studio album Bride of the Devil, Electric Six examines the concepts of evil and corruption, humanity’s various falls from grace, the nine circles of purgatory and of course, the internet itself. Bride of the Devil opens with the thunderous opener “The Opener”, a bombastic celebration of the arena rock Electric Six never got to play. The next two numbers are textbook ear worm guitar pop numbers that deal with debilitating income inequality and nepotism (“Daddy’s Boy”) and the horrors of being forced into a pool of toxic waste by an a rabid Doberman trained to kill (“(It Gets) (A Little) Jumpy”).



And then we get to the title track, a radio anthem, where it all becomes clear that The Devil is a metaphor for Russia and the United States is the young girl who is seduced, corrupted and wedded into a Satanic covenant with the beast. It’s all there in black and white. The Carrie Underwood-esque lyrics alongside a backdrop of vodka and caviar and backchannels and Seychllian bank accounts. That’s how they did it. They went after our country performers and got the rubes to feel good about being Russian assets. And still, it is the feel-good anthem of the summer.



Finally, the haunting album closer “Worm In the Wood” is Electric Six at its most serious, most tender and emotional. Haunting. Effervescent. Corrupt. Jaundiced. Tired.



So there you have it. Electric Six is back with its fourteenth record and it’s poppy and feel-good, as well as heavy, both sonically and lyrically. Our sound will corrupt you and enslave you as the beautiful demonic bride you know you truly are. Fraulein, take this severed hand with it’s creepy long nails from the beginning of time. To do so is truly thine destiny.

Sun Seeker / Duncan Fellows with Special Guest Sixteen Jackies

Sun Seeker
Sun Seeker has drawn applause for their unhurried breed of Cosmic American Music and with BIDDEFORD (Third Man Records), their long awaited debut EP, the Nashville-based band more than affirm their promise. The EP – which follows Sun Seeker’s widely acclaimed Third Man debut single, 2016’s “Georgia Dust” b/w “No One Knows” (TMR322) – sees Alex Benick (guitar, vocals), Asher Horton (bass guitar, vocals), and Ben Parks (drums, vocals) exploring nostalgia, melancholy, and emotional turmoil via laidback psychedelia pollinated with tight harmonies, classic folk songcraft, and country rock spirit, an ageless approach that is simultaneously archetypal and now utterly their own.

Sun Seeker
Sun Seeker has drawn applause for their unhurried breed of Cosmic American Music and with BIDDEFORD (Third Man Records), their long awaited debut EP, the Nashville-based band more than affirm their promise. The EP – which follows Sun Seeker’s widely acclaimed Third Man debut single, 2016’s “Georgia Dust” b/w “No One Knows” (TMR322) – sees Alex Benick (guitar, vocals), Asher Horton (bass guitar, vocals), and Ben Parks (drums, vocals) exploring nostalgia, melancholy, and emotional turmoil via laidback psychedelia pollinated with tight harmonies, classic folk songcraft, and country rock spirit, an ageless approach that is simultaneously archetypal and now utterly their own.

Upstate with Special Guest Benjamin Dakota Rogers

For Upstate, the last few years have been a time of profound exploration and self-discovery. As the band knocked off milestone after milestone on the road, their sound, their lineup, and even their name all underwent dramatic metamorphoses. Challenging and thrilling all at once, those changes have finally culminated in the band’s dazzling new self-titled album, a collection that showcases both their remarkable growth and their adventurous blend of folk, R&B, jazz, gospel, and rock and roll.

Recorded primarily over six days at the Clubhouse studio in Rhinebeck, NY, ‘Healing’ is the band’s first release with new member Allison Olender, their first with four contributing songwriters, and their first since shortening their name from Upstate Rubdown. It’s also their first project to be produced by Wood Brothers percussionist Jano Rix, who helped the group embrace their transformation and lean in to their unique lineup (three female vocalists, upright bass, guitar, and cajón, with mandolin and sax interchanged) without sacrificing any of the gorgeous harmonies, eclectic arrangements, and unforgettable performances that have defined the band since their earliest days.

Upstate first emerged from New York’s Hudson Valley in 2015 with their critically acclaimed debut, ‘A Remedy.’ The Poughkeepsie Journal raved that the group “need[s] nothing more than their voices to channel rhythm and stoke your emotions,” while Chronogram hailed their “infectiously sunny organic stew,” and The Alt called them “toe-tapping, contagious, and fun.” The album earned the band festival performances from Mountain Jam to FreshGrass, as well as a slew of national headline dates and support slots with everyone from The Felice Brothers and Phox to Marco Benevento and Cory Henry.

For Upstate, the last few years have been a time of profound exploration and self-discovery. As the band knocked off milestone after milestone on the road, their sound, their lineup, and even their name all underwent dramatic metamorphoses. Challenging and thrilling all at once, those changes have finally culminated in the band’s dazzling new self-titled album, a collection that showcases both their remarkable growth and their adventurous blend of folk, R&B, jazz, gospel, and rock and roll.

Recorded primarily over six days at the Clubhouse studio in Rhinebeck, NY, ‘Healing’ is the band’s first release with new member Allison Olender, their first with four contributing songwriters, and their first since shortening their name from Upstate Rubdown. It’s also their first project to be produced by Wood Brothers percussionist Jano Rix, who helped the group embrace their transformation and lean in to their unique lineup (three female vocalists, upright bass, guitar, and cajón, with mandolin and sax interchanged) without sacrificing any of the gorgeous harmonies, eclectic arrangements, and unforgettable performances that have defined the band since their earliest days.

Upstate first emerged from New York’s Hudson Valley in 2015 with their critically acclaimed debut, ‘A Remedy.’ The Poughkeepsie Journal raved that the group “need[s] nothing more than their voices to channel rhythm and stoke your emotions,” while Chronogram hailed their “infectiously sunny organic stew,” and The Alt called them “toe-tapping, contagious, and fun.” The album earned the band festival performances from Mountain Jam to FreshGrass, as well as a slew of national headline dates and support slots with everyone from The Felice Brothers and Phox to Marco Benevento and Cory Henry.

Rich Aucoin

The cruelest irony of life is that we never feel more alive than when we’re staring down death. In those precarious moments, every fabric of your being is cranked up to 11: the uncontrolably pounding heart, the dizzy head, the fight-or-flight adrenaline rush that courses through your entire body. But even if you’re fortunate enough to have never endured a near-death experience, you’re well familiar with all those feelings—because they just so happen to be the very same physical sensations that overcome us when we’re approaching euphoria. (Not for nothing did the French nickname orgasms “la petite mort”—i.e., “the little death.”)


Since releasing his first EP in 2007, Rich Aucoin has made it his life’s work to transform our fear into fun, anxiety into ecstasy, panic into pleasure. A mad DayGlo-pop scientist in the tradition of Brian Wilson, Wayne Coyne, and Dan Snaith, Rich is the sort of artist who has no time for half measures, utilizing all the resources and connections at his disposal to ensure his every gesture is a Major Event. To wit, his first proper album, 2011’s We’re All Dying to Live, was a 22-track orchestro-rock magnum opus that, once you factor in the numerous choirs on hand, featured over 500 collaborators. But making music is only half the story with
Rich—each of his releases to date have been constructed in tandem with companion films made up of classic movies and public-domain footage that are meticulously edited by Rich himself to sync up perfectly with his songs. And those visuals form the backdrop to a
now-legendary live spectacle that is less a rock concert than a secular big-tent revival, uniting congregations under giant rainbow parachutes and thunderclouds of confetti. At any given Rich Aucoin gig, there’s only one person in the room whose face isn’t frozen in a perma-smile: the poor bastard on staff who’ll eventually have to clean up a post-show scene that resembles a bombed-out party-favor store.


Rich’s sensory-overloading, synapse-bursting shows were initially a natural outgrowth of adapting We’re All Dying to Live’s grandiose studio creations to live setting—a savvy means
of distracting you from the fact that Rich was more likely to be performing with just five people rather than 500. For his 2014 follow-up, Ephemeral, Rich deliberately designed the songs to amplify that onstage energy, yielding a bounty of frenetic, electro-pumped motivational anthems powered by mass, call-and-response sing-alongs. But his latest, long-gestating masterwork, Release, was born from a more insular, existential mindset. Pieced together over the course of three years, across five cities in 16 studios with 70-plus collaborators and over a hundred instruments, Release presents Rich’s most musically elaborate, fully realized vision
to date—which is saying a helluva lot, given his maximalist track record. If Ephemeral was a ceaseless strobe-light flicker of a record, Release is more a lava lamp—a record of
slow-building, surprising mutations that invite more subjective interpretations.


Appropriately enough, Rich’s main inspiration for the record was literature’s ultimate Rorschach test: Alice in Wonderland—in particular, the 1951 film adaptation that Rich has strategically edited to sync up with the album, Dark Side of the Oz-style. On the one hand, Alice in Wonderland is a beloved children’s adventure tale filled with fantastical scenery and colorful characters; on the other, it can be interpreted as a metaphor for death, with Alice’s journey doubling as a trip from the living world into the afterlife. Likewise, the songs on Release are radiant, psychedelic portals into the deepest, darkest corners of our subconscious, forcing us to confront our greatest fears in order to, if not defeat them outright, then at least learn to manage and acclimate ourselves to them.


The first voice we hear on Release doesn’t belong to Rich. Over the percolating electronic beats of “The Base,” we’re greeted by the sampled voice of philosopher Sam Harris: “The past is a memory—it’s a thought arriving in the present. The future is merely anticipated—it is
another thought arising now. What we truly have is this moment.” More than just posit a theory on the meaning of life, those words present a challenge—to let go of the ghosts that haunt
you, stop worrying about what tomorrow what might bring, and embrace the here and now. Because pretty soon, it’ll be gone.


Where Rich’s past records encouraged group participation, Release forges a psychic connection—a more cerebral experience, but no less communal. More than just inspiring fans to sing along, he’s inviting us to feel together. And he’s asking for more of your patience this time—and more of your trust. Release strives for the same delirious peaks as Rich’s earlier records, but takes more scenic and, at times, more challenging routes to get there (as to be expected from an artist who, in 2018, embarked on his second North American tour by bicycle). “I can’t keep on pushing through,” he sings through the thick psych-funk haze of “The Dream,” before summoning his sax-wielding pal Joseph Shabason (Destroyer, The War on Drugs) to serve as the lighthouse guiding him to safe harbour. “The Other” may point the way to the dance floor with its ’90s-house pianos and Chic basslines, but as you’re going out of your head, you’re also venturing deep inside your mind to probe the insecurities keeping you from living life to its fullest. Even songs that seem headed down familiar paths lead to unexpected destinations. With “The Change,” Rich delivers the album’s most towering chorus—it’s his “Heroes,” his “Rebellion (Lies), his “All My Friends” all rolled into one. But it’s an anthem that’s unafraid to trip up its own momentum, halting its seismic drum beat for an extended ambient passage before rallying the troops for a grand finale. And through that haphazard song structure, the album’s theme is further reinforced: moments of bliss are fleeting, and we need to cut out the stressors in our lives in order to savor them as they’re happening.


As Rich travels further inside his wonderland, traditional songwriting logic gives way to pure transcendental exploration and mantric expression, as manifest in the hypnotic Screamadelica grooves of “The Fear” (propelled by guest guitarist Dan Mangan’s acoustic strums) and the Hacienda-bound synth-rock jam “The Mind,” where wordless vocals from
Rich and Jenn Grant are spliced together in a gender-blurring barrage of morse-code tics. But with the climactic sci-fi lullaby “This Time”—the first song written for this record and, as such, its thematic anchor—Rich reaffirms Release’s do-or-die mission in no uncertain terms: “This time is not enough/ this life is not enough/ our time is not enough/ and we can’t turn it off.”


The cruelest irony of life is that we never feel more alive than when we’re staring down death. In those precarious moments, every fabric of your being is cranked up to 11: the uncontrolably pounding heart, the dizzy head, the fight-or-flight adrenaline rush that courses through your entire body. But even if you’re fortunate enough to have never endured a near-death experience, you’re well familiar with all those feelings—because they just so happen to be the very same physical sensations that overcome us when we’re approaching euphoria. (Not for nothing did the French nickname orgasms “la petite mort”—i.e., “the little death.”)


Since releasing his first EP in 2007, Rich Aucoin has made it his life’s work to transform our fear into fun, anxiety into ecstasy, panic into pleasure. A mad DayGlo-pop scientist in the tradition of Brian Wilson, Wayne Coyne, and Dan Snaith, Rich is the sort of artist who has no time for half measures, utilizing all the resources and connections at his disposal to ensure his every gesture is a Major Event. To wit, his first proper album, 2011’s We’re All Dying to Live, was a 22-track orchestro-rock magnum opus that, once you factor in the numerous choirs on hand, featured over 500 collaborators. But making music is only half the story with
Rich—each of his releases to date have been constructed in tandem with companion films made up of classic movies and public-domain footage that are meticulously edited by Rich himself to sync up perfectly with his songs. And those visuals form the backdrop to a
now-legendary live spectacle that is less a rock concert than a secular big-tent revival, uniting congregations under giant rainbow parachutes and thunderclouds of confetti. At any given Rich Aucoin gig, there’s only one person in the room whose face isn’t frozen in a perma-smile: the poor bastard on staff who’ll eventually have to clean up a post-show scene that resembles a bombed-out party-favor store.


Rich’s sensory-overloading, synapse-bursting shows were initially a natural outgrowth of adapting We’re All Dying to Live’s grandiose studio creations to live setting—a savvy means
of distracting you from the fact that Rich was more likely to be performing with just five people rather than 500. For his 2014 follow-up, Ephemeral, Rich deliberately designed the songs to amplify that onstage energy, yielding a bounty of frenetic, electro-pumped motivational anthems powered by mass, call-and-response sing-alongs. But his latest, long-gestating masterwork, Release, was born from a more insular, existential mindset. Pieced together over the course of three years, across five cities in 16 studios with 70-plus collaborators and over a hundred instruments, Release presents Rich’s most musically elaborate, fully realized vision
to date—which is saying a helluva lot, given his maximalist track record. If Ephemeral was a ceaseless strobe-light flicker of a record, Release is more a lava lamp—a record of
slow-building, surprising mutations that invite more subjective interpretations.


Appropriately enough, Rich’s main inspiration for the record was literature’s ultimate Rorschach test: Alice in Wonderland—in particular, the 1951 film adaptation that Rich has strategically edited to sync up with the album, Dark Side of the Oz-style. On the one hand, Alice in Wonderland is a beloved children’s adventure tale filled with fantastical scenery and colorful characters; on the other, it can be interpreted as a metaphor for death, with Alice’s journey doubling as a trip from the living world into the afterlife. Likewise, the songs on Release are radiant, psychedelic portals into the deepest, darkest corners of our subconscious, forcing us to confront our greatest fears in order to, if not defeat them outright, then at least learn to manage and acclimate ourselves to them.


The first voice we hear on Release doesn’t belong to Rich. Over the percolating electronic beats of “The Base,” we’re greeted by the sampled voice of philosopher Sam Harris: “The past is a memory—it’s a thought arriving in the present. The future is merely anticipated—it is
another thought arising now. What we truly have is this moment.” More than just posit a theory on the meaning of life, those words present a challenge—to let go of the ghosts that haunt
you, stop worrying about what tomorrow what might bring, and embrace the here and now. Because pretty soon, it’ll be gone.


Where Rich’s past records encouraged group participation, Release forges a psychic connection—a more cerebral experience, but no less communal. More than just inspiring fans to sing along, he’s inviting us to feel together. And he’s asking for more of your patience this time—and more of your trust. Release strives for the same delirious peaks as Rich’s earlier records, but takes more scenic and, at times, more challenging routes to get there (as to be expected from an artist who, in 2018, embarked on his second North American tour by bicycle). “I can’t keep on pushing through,” he sings through the thick psych-funk haze of “The Dream,” before summoning his sax-wielding pal Joseph Shabason (Destroyer, The War on Drugs) to serve as the lighthouse guiding him to safe harbour. “The Other” may point the way to the dance floor with its ’90s-house pianos and Chic basslines, but as you’re going out of your head, you’re also venturing deep inside your mind to probe the insecurities keeping you from living life to its fullest. Even songs that seem headed down familiar paths lead to unexpected destinations. With “The Change,” Rich delivers the album’s most towering chorus—it’s his “Heroes,” his “Rebellion (Lies), his “All My Friends” all rolled into one. But it’s an anthem that’s unafraid to trip up its own momentum, halting its seismic drum beat for an extended ambient passage before rallying the troops for a grand finale. And through that haphazard song structure, the album’s theme is further reinforced: moments of bliss are fleeting, and we need to cut out the stressors in our lives in order to savor them as they’re happening.


As Rich travels further inside his wonderland, traditional songwriting logic gives way to pure transcendental exploration and mantric expression, as manifest in the hypnotic Screamadelica grooves of “The Fear” (propelled by guest guitarist Dan Mangan’s acoustic strums) and the Hacienda-bound synth-rock jam “The Mind,” where wordless vocals from
Rich and Jenn Grant are spliced together in a gender-blurring barrage of morse-code tics. But with the climactic sci-fi lullaby “This Time”—the first song written for this record and, as such, its thematic anchor—Rich reaffirms Release’s do-or-die mission in no uncertain terms: “This time is not enough/ this life is not enough/ our time is not enough/ and we can’t turn it off.”


That 1 Guy

With an extensive and amazing track record of unique and imaginative performances featuringhis curious instrument and copious amounts of originality, Mike Silverman aka That1Guy has set himself apart as a true one-of-a-kind talent that rivals any other artist currently in the entertainment industry. Averaging 150-200 shows a year all over North America and Canada, he has been a consistent favorite at such festivals as: Wakarusa, Electric Forest, Big Day out, All Good, Bella, High Sierra, Summer Meltdown, Montreal Jazz Festival, and many more. He was also the ʻTap Water Awardʼ winner at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival for best musical act. His legendary collaboration and multiple tours with Buckethead as The Frankenstein Brothers has further cemented his virtuoso story as a creative visionary as well.
His innovation continues to soar with the announcement of another tour kicking off in January 2015. Along with his pioneering main instrument, The Magic Pipe, a monstrosity of metal, strings, and electronics, facilitates the dynamic live creation of music and magic in ways only That1Guy can conjure, expect to see magic as well now integrated into the already clever performance. With this addition of incorporating magic seamlessly into his live shows, he has legitimately achieved an all inclusive audio/visual performance unlike anything experienced before. “So much of my music has miraculous qualities to it because itʼs hard to tell whatʼs going on. There are lots of slights of hand and sonic misdirection. It feels like I was meant to do magic”.
Silvermanʼs backstory is very similar to many musicians that have come before him. He grew up a self proclaimed music geek, soaked in the influence of his jazz musician father, and enrolled in San Francisco Conservatory of Music before joining the local jazz scene himself as a sought-after percussive bassist. This is where the similarities end, though, and where That1Guy truly began. “In my case, being a bass player, I just felt very restricted by the instrument itself,” he says. “Iʼve always wanted to sound different and have my own sound. I was headed that way on the bass, but for me to fully realize what I was hearing in my head sonically I was going to have to do it my way”. His influential and innovative double bass style eventually evolved into what we see today as That1Guy and ʻThe Magic Pipeʼ.
As his story continues to develop, Billboard has famously noted, “In the case of Mike Silvermanʼs slamming, futuristic funk act… the normal rules of biology just donʼt apply.”

With an extensive and amazing track record of unique and imaginative performances featuringhis curious instrument and copious amounts of originality, Mike Silverman aka That1Guy has set himself apart as a true one-of-a-kind talent that rivals any other artist currently in the entertainment industry. Averaging 150-200 shows a year all over North America and Canada, he has been a consistent favorite at such festivals as: Wakarusa, Electric Forest, Big Day out, All Good, Bella, High Sierra, Summer Meltdown, Montreal Jazz Festival, and many more. He was also the ʻTap Water Awardʼ winner at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival for best musical act. His legendary collaboration and multiple tours with Buckethead as The Frankenstein Brothers has further cemented his virtuoso story as a creative visionary as well.
His innovation continues to soar with the announcement of another tour kicking off in January 2015. Along with his pioneering main instrument, The Magic Pipe, a monstrosity of metal, strings, and electronics, facilitates the dynamic live creation of music and magic in ways only That1Guy can conjure, expect to see magic as well now integrated into the already clever performance. With this addition of incorporating magic seamlessly into his live shows, he has legitimately achieved an all inclusive audio/visual performance unlike anything experienced before. “So much of my music has miraculous qualities to it because itʼs hard to tell whatʼs going on. There are lots of slights of hand and sonic misdirection. It feels like I was meant to do magic”.
Silvermanʼs backstory is very similar to many musicians that have come before him. He grew up a self proclaimed music geek, soaked in the influence of his jazz musician father, and enrolled in San Francisco Conservatory of Music before joining the local jazz scene himself as a sought-after percussive bassist. This is where the similarities end, though, and where That1Guy truly began. “In my case, being a bass player, I just felt very restricted by the instrument itself,” he says. “Iʼve always wanted to sound different and have my own sound. I was headed that way on the bass, but for me to fully realize what I was hearing in my head sonically I was going to have to do it my way”. His influential and innovative double bass style eventually evolved into what we see today as That1Guy and ʻThe Magic Pipeʼ.
As his story continues to develop, Billboard has famously noted, “In the case of Mike Silvermanʼs slamming, futuristic funk act… the normal rules of biology just donʼt apply.”

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