Photos: VOLK at People’s Brewing

by Carl Abernathy on September 20, 2017

Eleot Reich seems like the kind of person who would take flowers to your sick grandmother she’s never met. She’d babysit your cranky dog if you had to go out of town unexpectedly. She’d give her sandwich to a homeless person, even if she hadn’t eaten all day.

There’s just one thing: Don’t get in her way when she’s behind a drum set. Reich, half of the rock ‘n’ roll duo VOLK, just might be the fiercest drummer I’ve ever seen.

VOLK, which also features guitarist Chris Lowe, opened its set Tuesday at People’s Brewing innocently enough with some old-school country and some Western swing. They even played a song that could have served as the soundtrack for a Clint Eastwood spaghetti Western. The tunes were pretty, sedate, comforting.

Then Lowe, who’s an incredibly versatile guitarist, started strumming a bit harder. And when he stepped on one of his guitar pedals for more punch, he unleashed the beast. Reich’s sweet smile became a demonic grin. She turned into the Tasmanian Devil with drumsticks.

Lowe also shifted seamlessly from ethereal (his cover of Guy Clark’s “Dublin Blues” was gorgeous) to evil.

In short, VOLK scared the hell out of me. But I haven’t had more fun at a show in a while.


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Adam Lee and Mitch Barker at 6th Street Dive

by Carl Abernathy on September 15, 2017

When Adam Lee starts rumbling with his deep bass voice, you wonder whether the bar will start shaking. Usually, though, his voice just makes listeners sigh, cry or laugh. Lee, you see, taps into every emotion you’ve ever felt, often within the same song. The Chicago-based singer channels both his inner Hank Williams and his punk rock roots.

I can’t think of a performer who would have been a better choice to kick off the one-year anniversary celebration of 6th Street Dive in Lafayette. Great show Thursday, and the building’s foundation survived just fine. Nice set by local singer Mitch Barker, too.

A few photos:


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Matthew McNeal and Andre Black at People’s Brewing

by Carl Abernathy on September 12, 2017

Matthew McNeal’s voice is soothing … even when he and his drummer, Andre Black, rock hard. The Texas-based singer-songwriter’s lyrics can be sweet, too. Mostly, though, his words paint a picture of the backroads of America drawn by an observant musical drifter. Listening to his songs is like watching mini-movies.

Great show at People’s Brewing in Lafayette. Looking forward to seeing Matthew and Andre again this spring.

A few photos:


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Photos: Jason and Gibson Wells

September 9, 2017

I’ve seen Jason Wells, an area rocker and bluesman, perform many times, but I’d never seen him play with his 15-year-old son, Gibson, before. Wow. They perfectly complement each other, creating bluesy sonic waves with their guitars. Great set by the Frankfort, Indiana, musicians Friday night at the Knickerbocker Saloon in Lafayette. Indianapolis musician Jason […]

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Photos: Huckleberry Funk

August 23, 2017

I wouldn’t be surprised to find Huckleberry Funk – a soul, funk and rock group from Bloomington, Indiana – on stage at jazz fest in New Orleans in a few years. Dexter Clardy’s voice soars when he sings. And the band moves effortlessly between genres, always maintaining their groove. I hope to see Huckleberry Funk […]

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Photos: The Prannies

August 9, 2017

The Prannies’ musical influences range from Chuck Berry to The Mekons, and their shows reflect it. They romped through their two sets at People’s Tuesday night in Lafayette. As always, they found their groove both in their covers and their own material, whether they were playing classic R&B-based rock or more punk-oriented ditties. And they […]

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Photos: Cody Ray and Joshua Powell

August 2, 2017

Cody Ray is the brightest new light on the Lafayette music scene. His live sets shine when he covers John Prine and Guy Clark. And Ray, an aspiring novelist, pens his own textured musical epics that include the same literary bones as the songs by those masters. I’ve seen Ray several times since he moved […]

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Photos: Michael Kelsey and friends at Purdue

July 28, 2017

I always love seeing Michael Kelsey. He’s a phenomenal guitarist. Great last show of the Purdue summer concert series. Some photos of Michael with Matt Call on drums, LD Miller on harmonica and Nicky Kerr on keyboards and vocals.

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Photos: Nathan Kalish

July 25, 2017

I always enjoy seeing Nathan Kalish. His show at People’s Brewing tonight was great, as always. He performed a lot of his own songs, but he also laced his sets with a lot of covers by Merle Haggard, Willie Nelson and John Prine. Some pix:

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Photos: Alice Wallace at People’s Brewing

July 18, 2017

I missed Alice Wallace, a country and Americana singer from California, the last time she rolled through Lafayette because I was giving seminars to young journalists. Glad I caught her this time at People’s Brewing. She’s terrific. Wallace should be a star. I hope she is one day. At any rate, she sounds like one. […]

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Photos: Traveling Broke and Out of Gas

July 15, 2017

Great show by Traveling Broke and Out of Gas at Purdue Friday. Some photos:

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