With a voice reminiscent of Christina Aguilera in Burlesque and a face to match, Ivy Levan has been making quite the impression on the L.A. music scene. Influenced by everything from Whitney Houston to Depeche Mode, the brassy-voiced singer debuted her first EP, “Introducing the Dame,’ last June, though this isn’t her first brush with the music industry.
A California quintet hailing from Santa Barbara, Rebelution has a history of making sunny, island-flavored sound with a West Coast twist. Though reggae at its core, Rebeultion’s style is a medley of SoCal pop, breezy funk and acoustic folk with a burst of Jamaican dub, resulting in an unpredictable yet effortlessly refined flow.
Hailing from Dayton, Ohio, The Werks are a genre-hopping jam band that play everything but the kitchen sink. In fact, they’d probably play the kitchen sink, too, if it had any sort of musical resonance. Comprised of Rob Chafin, Chris Houser, and brothers Dino and Norman Dimitrouleas, the four-piece blends rock, funk, jam and everything in between into a kaleidoscopic mix of psychedelic dance rock.
Imagine your favorite boutique hotel with attentive staff, gourmet cuisine and luxurious accommodations. Now picture yourself elegantly gliding through the misty Scottish Highlands taking in the spectacular scenery, ancient history, and charming folklore, all while leisurely cruising across legendary Loch Ness and through the Caledonian Canal.
For a two-man band, El Ten Eleven can make a lot of sound. Known for their unconventional pairing of fretless bass and electronic drumming, the indie instrumental duo utilizes effect pedals to loop and layer the contrasting sounds. The result is an array of chilled out electro ballads and laidback rock jams, compacted into five studio albums and a handful of singles.
On Wednesday night’s concert at Lincoln Hall in Chicago, psych pop solo act Youth Lagoon let his music do the talking. The 24-year-old singer/producer—otherwise known as Trevor Powers—shied away from the small venue’s typically intimate setting, opting for a shadowy show with minimal conversation.
Manic Focus is not your average EDM producer. Rather than lean toward the pop-laced, big anthem club tracks as so many producers before him, the young up-and-comer boasts a more laidback sound, accenting synth-laden tracks with subtle funk, hip-hop flavor, and hoards of dubbed-out bass.
Known for its deep pocket, authentic groove and explosive live shows that stretch late into the night, Chicago-based six-piece The Heard is bring legendary funk alive in the present day. The funk aficionados combine smooth horn, soulful keyboards, hard-hitting percussion and chicken-scratch rhythm guitar into groovy yet danceable beats, putting on a sweat-drenched show every Thursday at aliveOne.
With a signature pair of oversized heart-shaped glasses and an afro rivaling that of Jimi Hendrix, Earl Scioneaux III is hard to miss. Born and bred in New Orleans, the sound engineer/producer/performer has been turning heads from an early age.
Jamie Lono sits casually at a worn, wooden picnic table in Chicago’s Union Park, gratefully twisting the cap from a coconut water as he relieves his throat from the hot summer day. His floppy red hair is covered by a backwards baseball cap, and the beginnings of a sunburn span across his fair-skinned cheeks.