XPN Welcomes a Taste of the XPoNential Music Festival Kopecky w/ The Lost Bayou Ramblers w/ Angela Sheik, Kate Faust, Ton-Taun, and more
Indie rock and Psychedelic Cajun
July 25, 2015 · 7:00pm
Start time 7pm
Tickets are available at the door!
As WXPN hosts its annual XPoNential Music Festival the weekend of July 24 – 26, they were kind enough to bring a taste of the festival to Central PA with this show featuring Kopecky and The Lost Bayou Ramblers. Also on the show are Angela Sheik and Ton-Taun. Also, we’ll have Nokturnal spinning on the roof, and DJ Edge in the pub.
The second album from Nashville-based six-piece Kopecky, Drug for the Modern Age takes the many shake-ups the band’s endured over the past few years and turns them into inspiration for groove-driven, melody-heavy alt-pop that’s intensely emotional and strangely exhilarating. Formerly known as the Kopecky Family Band, the group looks at such life-altering events as the sudden loss of a loved one, divorce, and struggles with addiction, along with more joyful happenings like new love and marriage. “The album was written in this weird time of so much pain but also happiness, and that really informed the writing and recording,” says vocalist/guitarist Gabe Simon, who co-founded the group with vocalist/keyboardist Kelsey Kopecky in 2007. “Our goal was to talk about all these very serious things we were dealing with, but in a way that felt nothing like wallowing and more like standing triumphantly, or even dancing our way through it.”
In achieving that dynamic, Kopecky (whose lineup also includes guitarist Steven Holmes, bassist Corey Oxendine, cellist Markus Midkiff, and drummer David Krohn) offer moments of symphonic grandeur alongside edgy, electronic-leaning innovation. Meanwhile, their daringly intimate lyrics both unsettle and engage, asking questions and encouraging reflection on the part of the listener. “The idea behind the title Drug for the Modern Age is that we’re all trying to find the drug that helps us get through life and deal with the pressures and challenges that almost everyone in our generation faces,” says Gabe. “Whether it’s love or real connection or even an actual drug, we’re all looking for something that makes us feel like we’re a part of something good and meaningful.”
With the band forever bound by their shared passion for purposeful songwriting, all that revelation and sometimes-painful truth-telling ultimately fulfills something central to Kopecky’s mission: a deeper and stronger connection with each person listening. “It blows my mind to picture someone sitting in their bedroom and listening to lyrics that I came up with my own bedroom, and the transfer of emotion involved in that,” says Kelsey. “The idea of someone playing our music at their most vulnerable just makes us want to be more vulnerable too,” she continues. “It keeps us from holding back, and pushes us to express those exact feelings of pain or heartache or beauty or celebration as honestly as we possibly can.
Lost Bayou Ramblers
LOST BAYOU RAMBLERS was formed in 1999 by brothers Andre and Louis Michot, performing the roots Cajun music they learned as members of Les Frere Michot, the family band their father and uncles formed in the 80’s. The brothers quickly began playing clubs and festivals around Louisiana, and taking the traditional music they were raised with to new levels of rhythmic energy and spontaneity, producing the punk and psychedelic labels given to the band by reviews over the years.
2011-2012 BOSS US National Loop Champion Angela Sheik is a fierce vocal- and multi-instrumentalist who wows audiences with her fast effects pedal footwork and mischievous smile. She builds her own virtual backup band using rhythmic harmonies, beatbox rhythms, a looper pedal, and a collection of unusual instruments (including autoharp, theremin, and flute). This, combined with soulful, memorable, gut-felt melodies, blends into an electronic-infused, folk-pop style reminiscent of Imogen Heap.
Angela has independently released three albums and toured the US and Europe. She has opened for The Neon Trees, Julia Holter, Tim Fite, Joseph Arthur, Sharon Little, and Terra Naomi. She received a standing ovation while opening for bass legend Meshell Ndegeocello. In the words of Tristate Indie Magazine, “I was blown away by the Angela Sheik experience, and I’m still recovering.”
Kate Faust is far more than a garden variety singer-songwriter who creates and digitizes her own beats. The Philadelphia-based pop artist seamlessly pronounces the message of the erotic as power, embracing femininity throughout her soulful—and thoughtful— lyrics.
In 2014, Faust released her first EP, Crucial Companion, under Soulspazm. Largely influenced by her jazz background, she quickly infused jazz vocals with modern, cutting-edge beats. Kate’s second EP, Eros, released May 2015, takes guidance from Audre Lord’s essay, “The Uses of the Erotic.” Within Eros, Faust explores the very sort of female-positive eroticism that often slips by the wayside, specifically within the world of pop music.
Faust’s love affair with music flourished in high school when quality time spent with her grandfather resulted in a catalyzing appreciation of jazz music. She started taking piano lessons and recorded her first experimental album at the age of sixteen. Faust extended her formal musical training at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia, where she studied jazz vocals. During her University experience, she continued to perfect her craft and began songwriting and acquainting herself with the basics of production. Faust is now the sole curator behind each of her tracks, performing for enthusiastic fans everywhere, from intimate venue to large public spaces.
Indie rock and pop from Central PA, currently working on their fourth album.