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JUNE 13-19, 2018 I VOLUME 42 I NUMBER 24

RIVERFRONTTIMES.COM I FREE


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Horse Racing Season Continues!

FAIRMOUNT PARK Collinsville, Illinois

FAMOUS AMONG FRIENDS 4

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THE LEDE

“IgrewupinSt.LouisandIkeepcomingbacktoSt.Louisbecauseitfeelslikehome. Honestly,therearesomanythingswhereIcansay,‘Oh,St.Louisisthis,St.Louisis that…’ButIwillalwayscomebackbecauseitfeelslikehome.Eventheairsmellslike home.Humidityfeelslikehome.It’sawarmhug.Awarm,wetkiss.” 

PHOTO BY THEO WELLING

CandaCeKôhl,right,withsisterdanielleelise,photographedatDarker GoDs in the GarDen of the Low-hanGinG heavensattheluminaryonFriday,June6

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TABLE OF CONTENTS FEATURE

15.

The Soundtrack for the City Meet the STL 77: 77 local acts who did big things in 2018 Written by

RFT STAFF

Cover design by

EVAN SULT

NEWS

ARTS

DINING

CULTURE

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36

45

55

The Lede

Calendar

Your friend or neighbor, captured on camera

Seven days worth of great stuff to see and do

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42

Courts

Jason Stockley advances a novel legal theory: fear of protesters compelled the prosecution against him

10

Development

University City ponders a huge new development, TIF dollars included

Stage

Paul Friswold is blown away by Stray Dog’s Hedda Gabler

43

Film

Robert Hunt isn’t impressed with the director’s gimmicks in American Animals

Side Dish

Shannon Thompson took the long road to Indie Eatery

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Bars

Earthbound Satellite opens in Soulard Preservation Hall

First Look

Media

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The Corner is serving lunch and late-night in Midtown, while Copia keeps the wine pouring in Clayton

A journalist says goodbye to St. Louis — and its police department

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Cheryl Baehr enjoys the food of Simba Ugandan Restaurant, as well as its eye-opening back story

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6

Cafe

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Preview

Guided by Voices simply can’t stop, reports Jeremy Essig

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Galleries

Cherokee Street’s newest gallery specializes in street art

57

Out Every Night

The best concerts in St. Louis every night of the week

59

This Just In

This week’s new concert announcements


Publisher Chris Keating Editor in Chief Sarah Fenske E D I T O R I A L Arts & Culture Editor Paul Friswold Music Editor Daniel Hill Digital Editor Jaime Lees Staff Writers Doyle Murphy, Danny Wicentowski Restaurant Critic Cheryl Baehr Film Critic Robert Hunt Editorial Interns Alison Gold, Mario Miles-Turnage, Camille Respess, Ian Scott Contributing Writers Mike Appelstein, Allison Babka, Sara Graham, Roy Kasten, Jaime Lees, Joseph Hess, Kevin Korinek, Bob McMahon, Nicholas Phillips, Tef Poe, Christian Schaeffer, Lauren Milford, Thomas Crone, MaryAnn Johanson, Jenn DeRose, Mike Fitzgerald Proofreader Evie Hemphill Cartoonist Bob Stretch

A R T Art Director Evan Sult Contributing Photographers Mabel Suen, Monica Mileur, Micah Usher, Theo Welling, Corey Woodruff, Tim Lane, Nick Schnelle P R O D U C T I O N Production Manager Steve Miluch

M U LT I M E D I A A D V E R T I S I N G Sales Director Colin Bell Senior Account Executive Cathleen Criswell Account Managers Emily Fear, Jennifer Samuel Multimedia Account Executive Michael Gaines C I R C U L A T I O N Circulation Manager Kevin G. Powers E U C L I D M E D I A G RO U P Chief Executive Officer Andrew Zelman Chief Operating Officers Chris Keating, Michael Wagner VP of Digital Services Stacy Volhein Creative Director Tom Carlson www.euclidmediagroup.com

Saturday, June 23 & Sunday, June 24 Sat. 10am-10pm, Sun. 11am-9pm

Knights of Columbus Park 50 St. Francois St., Florissant, MO Near Lindbergh & Washington St.

Live Latino Bands Authentic Foods Children’s Pavilion Hispanic Arts & Crafts Margaritas & Beer

Free Admission!

N A T I O N A L A D V E R T I S I N G VMG Advertising 1-888-278-9866, vmgadvertising.com S U B S C R I P T I O N S Send address changes to Riverfront Times, 308 N. 21st Street, Suite 300, St. Louis, MO 63103. Domestic subscriptions may be purchased for $78/6 months (Missouri residents add $4.74 sales tax) and $156/year (Missouri residents add $9.48 sales tax) for first class. Allow 6-10 days for standard delivery. www.riverfronttimes.com The Riverfront Times is published weekly by Euclid Media Group Verified Audit Member

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Riverfront Times is available free of charge, limited to one copy per reader. Additional copies of the current issue may be purchased for $1.00 plus postage, payable in advance at the Riverfront Times office. Riverfront Times may be distributed only by Riverfront Times authorized distributors. No person may, without prior written permission of Riverfront Times, take more than one copy of each Riverfront Times weekly issue. The entire contents of Riverfront Times are copyright 2018 by Riverfront Times, LLC. No portion may be reproduced in whole or in part by any means, including electronic retrieval systems, without the expressed written permission of the Publisher, Riverfront Times, 308 N. 21st Street, Suite 300, St. Louis, MO 63103. Please call the Riverfront Times office for back-issue information, 314-754-5966.

Fiesta Car Show

by Dedicated Car Club Sat., 12pm

Sun., 2pm

Quinceanera Fashion Show

by Bidi Bidi Bom Bo Sun. 4pm

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PRESENTs

Ti cke ts w o N e l a OnS ka .c om k RFTVod

Thursday, June 28

VIP 6:30pm & GA 7:30pm

at The McPherson in the Central West End

SAVE $15

Buy Your Tickets in Advance

Includes unlimited cocktails, hand passed hors d’ouevres and entertainment.

Join us for some summer sippin’ at The Vodka Event on Thursday, June 28th at The McPherson. Enjoy delicious summer cocktails featuring Tito’s Handmade Vodka, Ketel One’s Botanical, Deep Eddy, wine and beer plus hand passed hors d’ouevres and a vodka-infused candy bar. Take advantage of the very limited VIP and get early entry, gift bag and valet parking.

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NEWS

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Stockley Suit Blames Protest Crowd Written by

DANNY WICENTOWSKI

F

or ex-St. Louis cop Jason Stockley, beating a murder charge wasn’t enough. Eight months after a judge handed down a “not guilty” verdict, Stockley is now suing former Circuit Attorney Jennifer Joyce, who initially charged him, as well as the internal affairs investigator who helped convince a grand jury that Stockley should face justice for the death of Anthony Lamar Smith. But Stockley’s lawsuit doesn’t just reopen the set of questions that have long swirled around the investigation into the 2011 fatal shooting of Smith. It casts protesters objecting to police violence as the villain driving his prosecution. Rather than portraying himself as a cop who took reckless action (including carrying around an unauthorized AK-47) and was lucky to get off the hook, Stockley contends in his suit that Joyce’s decision to charge him stemmed from her fear of protesters. It was a fear sparked by the response to her decision not to

Anthony Shahid (second from right) was one of the activists who brought media and public attention to the Stockley case in 2016. | THEO WELLING charge St. Louis cop Jason Flanery for fatally shooting VonDerrit Myers Jr. in 2014, the lawsuit argues. The day after that decision, protesters showed up to Joyce’s house. “Joyce was alarmed, and visibly shaken and intimidated by the protesters,” the suit claims, later attesting that Joyce had “feared for her life” and thanked police officials for responding to the demonstration. (It’s worth noting that

those same officers would later fail to show up to the protesters’ trials, leading to charges against them being dropped.) The lawsuit also zeroes in on a meeting Joyce held with two activists — Anthony Shahid and Phillip Duvall — in early May 2016, about a week before Stockley was arrested outside his home in Houston, Texas. Shahid and Duvall had led press conferences and a handful of protests demanding Stock-

ley be charged. According to accounts of the meeting, Joyce asked the activists to hold off on further action, as she was worried it would give Stockley’s lawyers ammunition for changing venue. The lawsuit cites the RFT cover story that first reported on the meeting’s existence, but then extrapolates that the meeting was surely proof that Joyce “colluded Continued on pg 11

STREAK’S CORNER • by Bob Stretch

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U. City TIF Draws Pushback Written by

ALISON GOLD

A

massive new redevelopment project in University City continues to draw pushback from residents and business owners, who voiced concerns about gentrification, transparency and neighborhood impact at a public hearing last week. After listening to more than three hours of comments on June 6, members of University City’s Tax Increment Financing Commission did not vote on the project. Instead, they established a third public hearing for June 22 at University City High School at 6 p.m. The $190 million redevelopment plan, proposed by St. Louisbased Novus Development, is expected to displace 67 homes, 58 apartments, two churches and a school. The new development will include a hotel, apartments and likely a Costco. Novus aims to secure $70 million in tax increment financing, or TIF, which allocates a portion of local property and sales taxes to redeveloping areas labeled as “blighted” or deteriorating. In return, Novus expects the development will bring at least $100 million in tax revenue to the area. To receive approval, the proposal must first get through the city’s TIF commission, then its city council. Caroline Fan, executive director of Missouri Immigrant and Refugee Advocates, or MIRA, says many local residents and business owners she spoke to were unaware of the hearing. “Some of these businesses are immigrant owned,” Fan says. “Unfortunately University City hasn’t done any translation or outreach to these people who pay taxes. And actually a number of these businesses on Olive are the highest tax-revenue generators for University City. So think about how that feels.” In fact, Fan says, MIRA has taken it upon themselves to translate documents into Chinese and Spanish for these immigrants. University City resident Farrakhan Shegog echoes Fan’s belief that University City has not com-

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Sonya Pointer speaks out against a TIF project proposed for University City. | ALISON GOLD municated clearly with residents and business owners. Shegog’s home, former school and familyowned barber shop all fall in the affected area. Many citizens, he says, were unaware of the public hearing. Worse, they remain unsure of how this project will affect them. “The entire Third Ward is in the affected zone,” Shegog says. “What people want to know more importantly than anything is what tangible benefits are going to come to their neighborhood. Are trash services going to be more frequent? Are potholes going to be fixed? Are sidewalks going to be fixed? Are homeowners going to be given assistance to bring their homes up to code?” The first public TIF commission hearing May 23 attracted more than 700 people, many of whom expressed concerns similar to those raised at the June 6 meeting. At that initial hearing, hosted at the Mandarin House Banquet Center, the fire marshal turned away more than 100 members of the public. Because University City hosted the second hearing in the same venue, on the afternoon of the meeting, resident Tom Sullivan lodged a formal complaint with the Missouri Attorney General’s Office. In an email to an assistant attorney general, Sullivan cited violation of Missouri’s Sunshine Law, writing “the Commission is planning a meeting for this evening in a venue that is likely to be woefully inadequate to accommodate members of the public, which is a violation of the law.” Many citizens are now pushing

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for a Community Benefits Agreement, a legal document which aims to clearly establish a mutually beneficial relationship between a developer and a community. Clair Antoine, who has been active in advocating for a CBA, grew up in the Third Ward. She is also the founder and treasurer of a political action committee called Missouri Civics Project. Antoine explained an additional complication with this project. While University City has promised not to use eminent domain for owner-occupied buildings, at least 50 percent of people who live in the Third Ward are renters. “I have an interest in social justice and racial equity,” Antoine says. “Knowing that the Third Ward is primarily African Americans and minority-owned businesses, lower income than the first and second wards, my concern is that there’s no one advocating for some of the residents.” Documents available at the hearing claim the project will offer a slew of short-term and longterm benefits, including immediate funding for redevelopment of the Third Ward, economic development on Olive, employment opportunities for residents, neighborhood stabilization and growth, and increased property values. The documents also depict graphs of home values every year between 2006 and 2016. Unlike wards one and two, the figures show, the Third Ward has not recovered from the recession. Residents who spoke against the development on June 6 expressed concerns about how the venture

may potentially affect the composition of the diverse neighborhood. Julia Lucas grew up in the Third Ward. After moving to Ballwin, she returned to University City “to get away from big-box stores and the urban sprawl they create.” Lucas also spoke about the potential traffic, pollution and environmental consequences of the development. “I’m for development, but I don’t see why we would risk getting rid of stuff that is bringing people in from the city and putting in something like a big-box store,” Lucas said. “Customers get on the highway, they go there, they shop and then they leave. So I don’t understand the wisdom of putting in a big-box store as an anchor to development.” Lucas, like many residents at the hearing, expressed additional concerns about Amazon rendering vendors like Costco obsolete. Before residents spoke, Third Ward aldermen Stacy Clay and Bwayne Smotherson expressed fervent support of the TIF subsidy. Some residents also support it. Dennis and Helen Fuller have occupied their home in the Second Ward for 42 years. Both took the mic in defense of the project last Wednesday. “I want you all to understand the revenue that we have supports a variety of things — one of the stellar things it supports is our school system,” Dennis Fuller said. “If we don’t support our school system, we are going to lose our community. You have teachers that are putting their own salary on the line for supplies — I don’t hear that about teachers in Clayton. I don’t hear that about teachers in Parkway. Why? They have better tax support than we have here.” Amidst the flurry of concerns and confusion expressed by the speakers, resident Sonya Pointer asked the TIF commission to delay the vote and not rush the process until they have further engaged and communicated with the community. “You’re talking about putting a development in the Third Ward or the city in general,” Pointer said. “The people in the Third Ward will see increased property values. The problem with it is with increased property values comes increased mortgages based on the taxes you have to pay on those property values. So you’re talking about a community that already has affordability issues. This needs to be taken into consideration, and that’s why I ask everyone to slow it down.” n


STOCKLEY

Continued from pg 9

with and sought to appease community agitators and protest leaders ... in order to avoid the recurrence of demonstrations at times and places and in manners she found terrifying.” This line of psychoanalysis — that Joyce only charged Stockley to stave off protests — isn’t new. It was a popular conspiracy theory that swirled before the trial, a theory that picked up additional steam after the case passed to Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner. At trial, it became clear that the prosecution’s case lacked critical physical evidence to prove Stockley acted with premeditated bloodthirstiness when he approached the driver’s side window of Smith’s car and shot the 24-yearold five times. But was that poor execution on the part of Gardner’s office, or the sign of a bad case that should have never gone to trial? In the lawsuit, the shortcomings in the prosecution’s case are arranged to implicate Joyce and the internal affairs officer, Kirk Deeken, alleging they knowingly fabricated a weak case against an innocent man. The lawsuit raises some familiar questions: Why did the case languish for years before Joyce chose to charge Stockley in May 2016? Why did so many agencies, federal and local, pass on prosecution beforehand? Why did prosecutors confidently allege that DNA evidence proved Stockley planted a gun on Smith, but then called no expert witnesses at trial to support that claim? If there was really a “kill shot,” why couldn’t prosecutors find a single witnesses to testify they’d heard it? Beyond recovered cell phone footage of the shooting’s aftermath, was there more “new evidence” that tipped Joyce’s hand, or just more of the same? In fact, most of the issues raised in the lawsuit were highlighted in the verdict issued by St. Louis Circuit Court Judge Timothy Wilson, who described his doubts about the case in a 30-page ruling issued on September 15. Wilson, though, didn’t weave theories about Joyce’s motivations. And for her part, Joyce told RFT that it was the initial police investigation that deserved blame for the case’s delayed prosecution. (Police officials have insisted that Joyce had all the evidence in 2012, and that any delay was the fault of her office.) Stockley’s lawsuit, filed by Dan

The lawsuit raises familiar questions: Why did the case languish for years before Joyce charged Stockley in 2016? Why did federal and local agencies pass on prosecution beforehand? Finney of Clayton, casts a wide net. And even if everything he alleges could be proven, prosecutors and police officers can claim “qualified immunity” to protect themselves from civil lawsuits — something Stockley should know. As for Joyce, the retired circuit attorney called the lawsuit “frivolous” in a statement released last week to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch and charged that Stockley’s aim was to “discourage prosecutors from considering charges against police officers for violating the law.” Stockley has already spent years under legal pressure from Smith’s relatives — Smith’s daughter was awarded a $900,000 civil settlement in 2013, and that case has since been reopened under accusations that lawyers for the city withheld evidence from Smith’s family. Still, he seems intent on reopening old wounds — and now he’s turned the tables, potentially costing the city that once employed him even more money. Joyce and Deeken’s pursuit of the murder charge “recklessly keyed up the city for riots,” Stockley told the Post-Dispatch, adding, “It’s more than just the suffering of me and my family. If an injustice like this is allowed, it threatens justice everywhere and it can happen to anyone.” Stockley’s choice of words is a notable, and somewhat curious, bowdlerization of a well-known protest slogan, “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” One wonders how the man who first said those words, Martin Luther King Jr., would feel about hearing it from Stockley today. n

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SL Riverfront Times — 6/14/2018

For The Soundtrack Of Your Summer!

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Unless otherwise limited, prices are good through Tuesday following publication date. Installed price offers are for product purchased from Audio Express installed in factory-ready locations. Custom work at added cost. Kits, antennas and cables additional. Added charges for shop supplies and environmental disposal where mandated. Illustrations similar. Video pictures may be simulated. Not responsible for typographic errors. Savings off MSRP or our original sales price, may include install savings. Intermediate markdowns may have been taken. Details, conditions and restrictions of manufacturer promotional offers at respective websites. Price match applies to new, non-promotional items from authorized sellers; excludes “shopping cart” or other hidden specials. © 2019, Audio Express.

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Unless otherwise limited, prices are good through Tuesday following publication date. Installed price offers are for product purchased from Audio Express installed in factory-ready locations. Custom work at added cost. Kits, antennas and cables additional. Added charges for shop supplies and environmental disposal where mandated. Illustrations similar. Video pictures may be simulated. Not responsible for typographic errors. Savings off MSRP or our original sales price, may include install savings. Intermediate markdowns may have been taken. Details, conditions and restrictions of manufacturer promotional offers at respective websites. Price match applies to new, non-promotional items from authorized sellers; excludes “shopping cart” or other hidden specials. © 2018, Audio Express.

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Reporter Caught Up in Kettle Says Goodbye Written by

SARAH FENSKE

L

ast September, St. Louis PostDispatch reporter Mike Faulk volunteered for an assignment covering the protests that broke out in the city following the acquittal of former police officer Jason Stockley. It was Sunday, the third night of the protests, which would erupt regularly for more than a month. It proved to be the ugliest, with more than 80 arrests. And it would change Faulk’s life. Trapped in a kettle by St. Louis police, he was with a group given no chance of escape before being arrested. In a lawsuit Faulk would later file against the department, he says he was tackled, with his head mashed into the pavement by an officer’s boot, and pepper sprayed in the eyes — all this even though he wore a prominent press pass. On Monday, Faulk put in his notice at the Post-Dispatch. He’ll be moving back to Yakima, Washington, which is his wife’s hometown. A teacher, she’s landed a job at the school district there. But while Faulk, a 32-year-old Alabama native, says he never planned to stay in St. Louis forever, what happened during that night of protest coverage hastened his departure. “I suffer from paranoid, traumatic thoughts, and I don’t feel safe around St. Louis police,” he says. Faulk moved to St. Louis in August 2016 after a stint at the Yakima Herald-Republic. He was initially hired to cover publicprivate partnerships for the daily, which included a memorable stint chronicling the (failed) plan to build a Major League Soccer stadium downtown. But after volunteering for protest coverage, getting arrested and finding himself suffering mentally and physically, he took a three-month mental health sabbatical. When he returned in April, he asked for — and got — a new beat, this one covering higher education. “I was desperate for something to feel different,” he says.

Mike Faulk. | COURTESY OF MIKE FAULK He’s also recently begun to try his hand at standup comedy, another attempt to shake up his life. (You can catch him at the Improv Shop most Mondays.) On stage, Faulk doesn’t joke about his work at the Post-Dispatch, much less his experience with the police. Overall, he says, he’s still sorting through the meaning of his time in St. Louis. “The lessons of this experience are still to be determined,” he says. “I want to believe that in time I’ll be able to reflect on this in a way that really is for the best.” But in the meantime, he finds himself thinking a lot about being trapped by police that night with no chance of escape — not just what it meant as a journalist, but as a citizen, as someone merely attempting to observe the department in action that night. “To me it’s about the importance of anyone, anywhere, being able to witness something and not be abused by the police for simply being in public,” he says. “There’s what they did to my body and what I saw happen in front of me — I couldn’t explain it, could not make sense of it and could not do anything to stop it. Hearing these helpless cries of people asking ‘why,’ and them just pepperspraying and tackling and beating people, that is a lesson. It’s not about journalism, though that’s a part of it. This could happen to anyone. And so how do we make sure it doesn’t?” In Yakima, Faulk intends to keep writing, but says he’s stepping away from the traditional newsroom for now. His last day at the Post-Dispatch will be July 1, and he plans to leave for Yakima by mid-July. But even so, he avers, his lawsuit against the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department will continue. n


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S

howcaseSTL, the RFT’s annual blowout celebration of St. Louis’ unparalleled musical talent, returns again this weekend to the Grove — and it’s going to be a doozy. This year, for the first time, the festival will stretch to two full days across ten venues in order to accommodate in excess of 100 performing acts. It is the largest collection of local musicians on one bill in St. Louis history, and we’re damn proud of that fact. And that’s not all. In 2018 we’re upping the ante by bringing indierock legends Guided by Voices and rapper/singer Brooke Candy to town to headline the festival, so you’ll be able to take in some topnotch touring acts in addition to bountiful local music. Speaking of local music, this year also brings the return of the STL 77, our list of 77 local acts who did big things in the last twelve months. That includes Kevin Bowers, who led a group of St. Louis players in LouFest’s trib-

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ute to Chuck Berry in September; Tef Poe, who was recently signed to the legendary Tommy Boy Records; and even the much-missed Bob Reuter, who released an album from beyond the grave this year in the form of Big Muddy Records’ release of the Dinosaurs’ archival recordings. As we have in years past, we reached out to our readers, as well as promoters, musicians, radio DJs, music writers and venue owners, to ask them about their favorite acts of the last year, and then we whittled down and compiled those picks into this list. Presented sans genre, category or classification, the STL 77 represents a yearbook of sorts of St. Louis’ top talent — many of whom will be performing at ShowcaseSTL this weekend. Now read up on some of the best music St. Louis has to offer in 2018, then head to rftshowcase. com for more information on the big party. We’ll see you Saturday and Sunday in the Grove! —Daniel Hill

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STL 77

Continued from pg 15

PAIGE ALYSSA

A standout with her turn as Janet Jackson at last year’s An Undercover Weekend, Paige Alyssa brings the same ’80s dance-pop feel to her original work, only with her smooth, warm vocals added to the mix. The EP and two singles Alyssa has released over the last two years swirl with enough synths and drum machines to make anyone nostalgic for the days when MTV still showed videos and dance floors were rife with neon clothing. Turning to the a cappella tracks on each single, however, the listener discovers the true power of the songs: Alyssa’s voice, one developed in church choirs and polished as a vocal performance major at Webster University. While her sounds may evoke the sonics of decades past, Alyssa is clearly on a path to lead St. Louis pop music into the future. Recommended If You Like: Janet Jackson, Ameriie, TLC Official: paigealyssamusic.com Facebook: facebook.com/mspaigealyssa —Jeremy Essig

KEVIN BOWERS

With the release of Nova two years ago, Kevin Bowers set himself apart on the St. Louis music scene. The album not only explored Bowers’ love for international rhythm, but also featured some of the city’s best talent sitting in as session players. The live shows that accompanied the album were notable not just for the musical talent onstage, but also the pomp that comes with including dancers in full costume, interacting with the audience. Nw working on a new album,

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Bowers began his musical journey with a fascination with Police drummer Stewart Copeland and landed at the Musicians Institute in Los Angeles before he returned to his home base of St. Louis, where you might have caught him leading a group of St. Louis stalwarts backing last year’s big LouFest tribute to Chuck Berry. Bowers’ shows are can’t-miss affairs not only for fans of world music but anyone who enjoys watching high-level creativity play out before them on a stage. Recommended If You Like: Animal Logic, Stewart Copeland, Bill Bruford Official: kevinbowersmusic.com Facebook: facebook.com/kevinbowersmusic —Jeremy Essig

THE PROVELS

Yeah, they can jam, and yeah they don’t take themselves too seriously (dig song titles like “Cookie Mouth” and “Slow Cheddar”), but the members of the Provels are also on the cutting edge of the St. Louis funk-rock scene. Led by Jim Peters on guitar and Philip “Spanky” Manaois on organ, the band isn’t afraid to sing, but it excels in the outer stratospheres of tight and dirty instrumental workouts, when the rhythm section of Bill Newmann and Jonathan Taylor can really lock in and put the greasy exclamation point on the funk in its sound. The band’s only releases to date are 2014’s self-titled collection and last year’s sneaky and slinky EP Greatest Hits, but there’s little doubt there are more irresistible fatback grooves in the arsenal those came from. Recommended If You Like: The Meters, Booker T and the MGs, Lettuce, Galactic Official: theprovels.com Facebook: facebook.com/theprovels —Roy Kasten

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LOBBY BOXER

On a just-released session for the acclaimed music-discovery site Daytrotter, the ebullient emo/math-pop trio Lobby Boxer rolled through a few new tunes with its trademark pep and vigor. And while it is no small thrill to see the hardtouring locals get some national press, it’s even better to hear those new songs. It’s been more than two years since Big Bucks, the group’s debut full-length, came out, and the new tracks continue the band’s flurried, genre-blurring approach. The session’s first track, “Kingshighway Dot Gov” name-checks one of our city’s main arterial routes even as it attacks the song’s changes with some hybrid of Rush and Green Day. The session serves as a hopeful aperitif for a forthcoming album. Recommended If You Like: proggy emo, poppy math-rock, sugar highs Official: lobbyboxer.com/ Facebook: facebook.com/LobbyBoxer/ —Christian Schaeffer

MATHIAS AND THE PIRATES Mathias and the Pirates makes it a point to embrace variety. Since its inception in 2012, the hip-hop outfit has employed electro-funk, live reggae and rock backdrops, as well as classic sample-based boom-bap beats for raps equally likely to fire up a protest or a party. Whether crafting character studies, making self-deprecating jokes or rallying against corrupt authorities, Mathias and Ms. Vizion are adept at delivering their message through both straightforward rhyming and singsong verses; Ms. Vizion often handles hooks with multi-tracked soulful belting. The Pirates have grown in ranks over the

years to include drummer Andrew Gibson, DJ VThom, saxophonist Terry Grohman and trumpeter Shelby Carter, all of whom color in the beats to make them pop with vibrant energy. The combined result is a festive, all-inclusive sound you can nod your head or shake your ass to. Recommended If You Like: Freestyle Fellowship, Fishbone, Ozomatli Facebook: facebook.com/PiratesSTL Bandcamp: pirates.bandcamp.com —Bob McMahon

OXBRAKER

For Oxbraker, the Busch floweth freely and the Ampeg runneth over. Throbbing bass and lumbering drums do the heavy lifting while drop-C mega-riffs coast to stoner metal glory, all beneath a set of vocal chords thrashed to match the alkaline growl of stoner metal’s pioneers. For this hard-working south-city metal band, it’s all in a day’s work. High off a newly released digital album with six barnburning anthems that take the band’s sound to new highs, Oxbraker shows huge promise within a metal scene that is starting to explode. Where local contemporaries play it fast and loose, this quartet takes a huge bong rip and sets the cruise control. Bring earplugs and brass knuckles. Recommended If You Like: The Sword, Motorhead, Kyuss, tinnitus Bandcamp: xbraker.bandcamp.com Facebook: facebook.com/profile. php?id=100009987942151 —Kevin Korinek

BROKE POETS

If you’re looking for local hip-hop that represents St. Louis, you’d be hard pressed to find another collective as essential as Broke Poets. The nod-heavy rhythms are old school and fresh as hell with a


sharp ear for samples and beats to bounce down the city’s streets. Lyrical flow is spread evenly among the group’s core members — Jonezy, Bobo Bryson, Capo, Que Houston, Ackurate, Jia Davis, Veron, Mathias, Ryan Wordsmith — who blend newcomer talent and veteran rap chops into an unforgettable listening experience. While Broke Poets’ self-titled digital album, released last fall, has been making the rounds in hip-hop circles, it’s the group’s dynamic live sets that are the talk of the town, as everyone takes a turn at the mic and the song unfolds in fascinating ways. You’d be hard-pressed to find a group more qualified to craft the soundtrack for this city. Recommended If You Like: The Pharcyde, Jurassic 5, Wu-Tang, Digable Planets Bandcamp: brokepoets.bandcamp. com/releases Facebook: facebook.com/brokepoets —Kevin Korinek

REV. SEKOU

No single line could sum up the righteous and riotous music of Rev. Osagyefo Uhuru Sekou, but this one comes close: “In times like these we need a miracle/ Ain’t nobody going to save us/We’re the ones we’ve been waiting for.” A preacher, filmmaker, writer, composer, bandleader and activist, Sekou has roots in St. Louis and was an active presence during the Ferguson uprising. He was busted twice here — once for praying in the streets. For Sekou, politics is just spirituality by other means and vice versa, and his music, notably on last year’s deeply bluesy yet experimental In Times Like These (produced by Luther and Cody Dickinson of the North Mississippi Allstars), always tells it like it is and as it may yet be. Sekou’s revolution doesn’t need to be televised; his relentless touring has

taken the gospel of civil rights around the world. Recommended If You Like: Gil Scott Heron, the Last Poets, the Roots, Mavis Staples Official: revsekou.com Facebook: facebook.com/revsekou —Roy Kasten

OLD SALT UNION

Bluegrassers start young; they’d better, because it takes a lifetime to master the form. Old Salt Union isn’t a bluegrass band, but since its members were teenagers they’ve been working out their original version of not-quite-jammy, not-quitetraditional string-band music. Those years of woodshedding paid off last year with the band’s self-titled album, on one of the country’s premier acoustic music labels, Compass Records. The album shows how deeply Old Salt Union’s songwriting has grown and how committed its members remain to taking risks with arrangements. And the band refuses to settle for just connecting with a loyal local fan base — they’re road warriors who show no signs of slowing down anytime soon. Recommended If You Like: Old Crow Medicine Show, Bela Fleck, David Rawlings Machine, New Grass Revival Official: oldsaltunion.com Facebook: facebook.com/OldSaltUnion —Roy Kasten

FINN’S MOTEL

In 2006, Finn’s Motel made waves with Escape Velocity, a collection of heartracing power-pop with one foot in the garage and the other on an arena stage. Eleven years later, the Joe Thebeau-led troupe oiled its joints and slowly creaked back to life with the release of two fulllength albums (and, as of April, the Stone Lions EP). There’s no rust for the weary, however — and the troupe is swiftly mak-

ing up for lost time. Both Jupiter Rex and Quinta del Sordo are brimming with smart, insightful songwriting with many sonic moods, from howling jangle explosions to delicate acoustic ruminations. Although Guided by Voices is an obvious touchstone — how Finn’s Motel got to the song title “Number 7 by the Ice Machine” before Bob Pollard is beyond us — “Into the Realm of Jupiter Rex” is Teenage Fanclub-esque and “Help Is On The Way” is a generous Superchunk homage. Recommended If You Like: Guided by Voices, Superchunk, late ’70s Cheap Trick, ’80s R.E.M., obscure Midwest power-pop, ’90s Wilco Facebook: facebook.com/FinnsMotel —Annie Zaleski

DRACLA

Dracla has a hell of a gimmick. Ray Kannenberg stars as the stoner-metal quintet’s vampiric namesake, a 1,072-yearold bloodsucker who spellbound the souls of his “maul boiz” to eternally young bodies so they could serve as his backing band. Armed with a bass, Dracla speak-sings in a Transylvanian accent of weeping shadows, winding snakes of fire, and bothersome dogs over sludgy, downtuned rock grooves. The campy trappings are intentionally funny, but Dracla itself

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is no joke. Guitarists Jake Jones and Nick Kampen volley twin leads full of swaggering triplet runs over the whirlwind of pounding tom fills and galloping beats summoned by drummer Kevin Insinna, while Nathan Dick’s organ lurks in the shadows as a sinister presence. Tempos often shift into double time and back, but the band hits hard at any speed. All in all, it’s a bracing attack worthy of its immortal leader. Recommended If You Like: Black Sabbath, Fu Manchu, Kyuss Facebook: facebook.com/draclasocialmediarelations Bandcamp: dracla.bandcamp.com —Bob McMahon

SLEEPY KITTY

2018 has been a frustrating one for Sleepy Kitty. Singer and guitarist Paige Brubeck has struggled with her voice and, as a result, she and drummer Evan Sult (who, full disclosure, is the RFT’s new art director) have been on a semihiatus from performing. If that wasn’t enough, Brubeck and Sult’s stock of poster prints (the duo are master printmakers and designers) was wiped out in the mini-tornado that hit the recent Art Outside event in Maplewood. And yet Continued on pg 20

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this year the band released an excellent EP, Bastard Orphan, a uniquely lo-fi rock take on some choice cuts from the Hamilton soundtrack (yeah, you wish you had thought of that first) and continued collaborating with friends including Kevin Bowers and Matt Basler of Tok. Word is they’ve been holed up working on video projects and art, and there’s no doubt the band will return to full-on and regular live rocking soon. Recommended If You Like: The Velvet Underground, Ume, Sonic Youth, Pavement, Art Chantry Facebook: facebook.com/sleepykitty– music Official: cargocollective.com/sleepykittymusic —Roy Kasten

THE DINOSAURS

If St. Louis has a great punk scene (and it surely does), it has bands like the Dinosaurs to thank. Formed in 1978 by the late Bob Reuter — best known as a photographer, DJ, songwriter and leader of loud, messy, rootsy rock bands such as Kamikaze Cowboy and Alley Ghost — the Dinosaurs didn’t stand a chance in a St. Louis scene that thought the Stooges were a trio of slapstick comics. Last year, Big Muddy Records, which has toiled to keep Reuter’s legacy alive, released the band’s extant recordings, including the legendary single “Rock ‘n’ Roll Moron,” and what do you know? Reuter could fuzz rock like a mutha and his melodies and songs were indestructible, no matter how hard the band tried. The album belongs in the collection of anyone who cares about rock & roll.

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Recommended If You Like: The Stooges, the Ramones, the MC5, New York Dolls Official: bigmuddyrecords.com/artist/ the-dinosaurs Bandcamp: thedinosaurs.bandcamp.com —Roy Kasten

ADAM HUCKE

You may know Adam Hucke from his longtime stint in the Funky Butt Brass Band where, as a founding member, he has used his trumpet to pierce the upper register of the group’s New Orleans-inspired funk, soul and jazz melange. And while he’s also served as a valued, first-call session player for years, Hucke has been secretly tending to his own music, both with and without his signature horn. Last year’s Madam I’m Adam gave formal introduction for Adam Hucke’s Music for Nerds, a catch-all of his musical talents and interests. Much of it tends toward the quirky — They Might Be Giants and Weird Al are touchstones — but no one can deny the earworm that is “The Vegetables are Singing,” an ode to greens that would make Brian Wilson proud. Recommended If You Like: They Might Be Giants, the Beach Boys, Weird Al, Moxy Fruvous Official: www.adamhucke.com Facebook: www.facebook.com/musicfornerds/ —Christian Schaeffer

THE MAY DAY ORCHESTRA Tim Rakel has fronted a handful of bands over the past fifteen years — the raggedy Bad Folk, the harder-charging Union Electric — but the May Day Orchestra holds a special place in his collected songbook. A songwriter with a burly, stentorian delivery and a desire to tell knotty stories

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rather than make easy rhymes, Rakel returned with a new May Day lineup at the beginning of 2018, and its album Wake pinpoints the band’s strengths. On the album, Rakel sings of Yusuf bin Hasan, a Kenyan revolutionary who led a massacre in Mombasa in 1631. But for Rakel and his bandmates, the story is a launch pad for themes of colonialism and revenge, and with new guitarist Charlie Tabing’s searing leads, these songs work as equal parts history lesson, parable and rock song. Recommended If You Like: Folk operas, the people’s history, Son Volt Bandcamp: themaydayorchestra.bandcamp.com Facebook: facebook.com/MayDayOrchestra —Christian Schaeffer

CRIM DOLLA CRAY

Sure, keeping the party going tends to be priority No. 1 for most DJs, and Crim Dolla Cray is no different, but she’s also able to shapeshift to fit any mold or mood on a whim. She even put fingers to wax for an ensemble with contemporary composer John Wiese at the tail end of 2017. While Cray does haunt south-city bars — with the Royale being the closest thing to a home base — she can be found catching partygoers in the web she spins between two records just about anywhere. Most recently? She laid out that dance-floor vibe to a crowd of thousands with two sets at Cherokee Street’s Cinco de Mayo celebration. Recommended If You Like: Smooth transitions, rare vinyl, actually dancing and not just talking about it Facebook: facebook.com/CrimCray Soundcloud: soundcloud.com/crimdolla-cray —Joseph Hess

HOUNDS

A young band with a modern-rock-radio sound, Clockwork shot to the top of the pile with a slot at 2015’s LouFest — a boon for any band, let alone one with members unable to partake legally of the green room’s beer cooler. But in the months and years after that festival set, the members of Clockwork opted for a reboot and recast themselves as Hounds. Brothers Jordan and Logan Slone and drummer Logan Mohler didn’t start from scratch, of course, but a live-in-the-room production method helped the group strip back, simplify and create its sturdy and streamlined 2017 self-titled debut. Recommended If You Like: Cold War Kids, the Districts, early Arctic Monkeys Official: houndssounds.com Facebook: facebook.com/HoundsSounds —Christian Schaeffer

THE LION’S DAUGHTER The Lion’s Daughter has always had flair for the cinematic, but the band’s last three releases have brought that quality to the forefront. A Black Sea, the trio’s 2013 collaboration with folk band Indian Blanket, saw the band aiding its acoustic counterpart in creating a doom-oriented sound fit for desolate post-apocalyptic panoramas. On the band’s 2016 full-


length Existence Is Horror (recently rereleased by French metal label Season of Mist) the Lion’s Daughter manages to pull from a variety of metal subgenres to craft a sonic scene of a much more crowded and chaotic cataclysm. In May, the release of the first single from the upcoming Future Cult gave a glimpse of a new direction. In addition to the expected metal sounds, “Die Into Us” utilizes synth textures straight out of a John Carpenter score, which makes you wonder: How long until the Lion’s Daughter becomes this generation’s Goblin? Recommended If You Like: Neurosis, Zombi, Ministry, Nachtmystium, Craft Facebook: facebook.com/thelionsdaughter Bandcamp: thelionsdaughter.bandcamp. com —Nick Horn

HONEYDEW

Playing loud is easy. Playing quietly and minimally, however, takes a certain amount of precision and timing. When you’ve only got a couple of instruments, everything’s magnified, and it becomes painfully obvious if you flub a chord or forget a word. Not every band can do it, but Honeydew can — and does. On its debut self-titled cassette, most of the songs are guided by simple, melodic bass patterns and interlocking Casiotone riffs, with occasional drums. Nicole Bonura’s straightforward vocals are perfect for her songs: They run the gamut from food allergies to awkward conversations but always retain a certain self-deprecating, observational humor. Recommended If You Like: Dubb Nubb, Girlpool, Marine Girls Bandcamp: honeydewstl.bandcamp.com Facebook: facebook.com/honeydewhoneydewhoneydew —Mike Appelstein

SEASHINE

We are currently living through shoegaze music’s second hurrah. Slowdive and Lush have made successful comebacks, Kevin Shields is forever promising a fourth My Bloody Valentine album, and newer groups such as Beach House and Diiv have taken up the genre’s echo-y, effects-laden conventions. Local quartet Seashine is influenced by all of the above, yet steers clear of carbon copying. Led by vocalist/guitarist Demi Haynes, Seashine strikes a nice balance in its songs between ambient beauty and thick, controlled chaos. The vocals and melodies are wistful but clear, even when the band’s wall of sound is at its highest. Live, Seashine turns up the volume for an immersive physical experience. Recommended If You Like: Lush, Stereolab, Slowdive Facebook: facebook.com/seashineband Soundcloud: soundcloud.com/seashineband —Mike Appelstein

NIKEE TURBO

You’ll be hard-pressed to find a Nikee Turbo track that doesn’t already have thousands of views — and those that don’t yet will get there, you can bet. The young rapper doesn’t ride a wave or skate on trends for a quick viral hit; he has a huge, dedicated fan base that keeps looping back for new drops. And it’s not hard to see why. If his mixtape Flood the Streets for the South says anything, it’s that Nikee will keep digging deeper with his swag and sense of style. He sounds ever-changing because he’s constantly collaborating, and if one thing keeps Nikee fresh both on record and on video, it’s that he vibes as if he were coming straight from the stage. That’s a feel that can’t be faked.

Recommended If You Like: Rappers that don’t fit inside the box Facebook: facebook.com/NikeeTurbo Soundcloud: soundcloud.com/nikeeturbo —Joseph Hess

NAJII PERSON

Najii Person never hesitates to say exactly what’s on his mind, and that honesty provides a fascinating insight into the mind of one of St. Louis’ best up-andcoming lyricists. While many rap artists prefer to curate a specific type of track, or lean on a single producer to help craft a trademark sound, Najii uses everything from old-school boom-bap beats and piano samples (which you can hear on “God Knows”) to cutting-edge post-trap (best exemplified on “Not Around”) to frame his thoughts. The sonic diversity of his work might make another rapper come across as unfocused — or, even worse, like a musical tourist. But thanks to an obvious love of a wide range of hip-hop along with the honesty of his lyrics and his humble, rapper-next-door delivery, Najii’s output simply reads as glimpses into the mind of a complex, multifaceted and thoughtful human being. Recommended If You Like: Isaiah Rashad, Kendrick Lamar, Anderson .Paak, Smino, early Lupe Fiasco Facebook: facebook.com/najiiperson Soundcloud: soundcloud.com/nperson —Nick Horn

MIDDLE CLASS FASHION

on 2016’s iii. Ego, its fourth album, is another step sideways. At turns tense and spare (“Every Time,” “Hot”), at others moody and dark (“Cold Blooded Rock and Roll,” which sounds nothing like you think), the band continues in an electropop vein, but always with a warm melodic core. “Searching,” already a live favorite, is a fine rocker that faintly recalls Sleater-Kinney at its most urgent. Album closer “No Lie” is Middle Class Fashion’s version of stadium rock, complete with guitar solo and a soaring, lighters-in-theair chorus. We’re lucky to have this band. Recommended If You Like: Ultravox, Sparks, Magnetic Fields’ electronic side Official: middleclassfashion.com Facebook: facebook.com/middleclassfashion —Mike Appelstein

THE BONBON PLOT

Playing gently is usually more difficult than playing loudly; any novice behind a drum kit quickly learns that volume is easy but nuance takes talent. And while the craft behind the BonBon Plot’s cover sets speaks to some well-honed jazz chops and an intuitive understanding of Brazilian rhythms, the trio’s music is breezy and weightless — and soothes like a balm. Guitarist Will Buchanan has plenty of gypsy jazz licks at his disposal, and upright bassist Janet Buchanan keeps a lithe low end while singing a variety of American jazz standards, bossa nova crossover hits and French pop classics. You’re likely to find the BonBon Plot at receptions, private parties and corner cafes, but the trio makes such pleasant background music that you’ll want to pull up a seat (or find a dance partner) and pay attention. Continued on pg 22

Middle Class Fashion is a band that likes to test its own boundaries. The band has shown notable growth on each album, starting with the piano-driven power pop of its earliest recordings, and more recently embracing minimal synth tones

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Recommended If You Like: Astrid Gilberto, Django Reinhardt, Sergio Mendes & Brasil ’66, a mimosa-heavy brunch Facebook: facebook.com/thebonbonplot Official: thebonbonplot.com —Christian Schaeffer

BLOOM

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It’s a point of fact that Kalyn McNeil has one of the most arresting voices in town. As Bloom, McNeil makes slow-drip R&B that manages to showcase every facet of her range, from cavernous to ear-piercing. Her 2017 release, SIN[SES], was made with the help of former St. Louisan Dylan Brady, and his production can skew both atmospheric and apocalyptic. But on “Purple Flowers,” a stand-alone single from late last year, Bloom proved that she needs little more than her own multilayered voice and some ambient reverb to craft a stunning track. The accompanying video was immersive and sensual, amplifying the song’s mix of sexuality and spirituality with a healthy dose of self-love and body-image positivity. Recommended If You Like: Rhye, Abra, Frank Ocean Official: thebloomexperience.com Facebook: facebook.com/ExperienceBloom —Christian Schaeffer

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Whether it’s a dark sense of humor or a raw recollection of real life, Zak Marmalefsky is a wily wordsmith. His poetry smoothly moves on a bed of dense melodies built with only a six-string, offering what looks like a simple proposition from the outset: a singer-songwriter. At face value, that’s what you get, but his baritone stream-of-consciousness also offers a candid account of the human condition, perhaps even his own at times. With more than a hundred songs stretched across limited tapes and Bandcamp pages, Marmalefsky has accrued a massive body of work that he recently built upon with My Number, a full-length released at the end of 2017. Recommended If You Like: Baritone singing, acoustic guitar, nothing else Official: zakm.biz Bandcamp: zakm.bandcamp.com —Joseph Hess

BUNNYGRUNT

The cover of My First Bells, a compilation of Bunnygrunt’s first few seveninch recordings that was released this year, features a young Matt Harnish and Karen Ried onstage during their first out-of-town gig. A lot has changed since then; the band’s then-signature tweepop leanings hardened into something a little scuzzier, and Ried’s move from drums to bass led to a somewhat fluid lineup. But as the band celebrated its 25th year in 2018 (with an ad-hoc festival that stretched over several nights), the anniversary shows were a good reminder of what has remained central in Bunnygrunt’s longer-than-expected tenure: a musical partnership between two like-minded pop weirdos that continues to yield sweet, tangy fruit. Recommended If You Like: Bunnygrunt singles, Bunnygrunt albums, Bunnygrunt shows Official: bunnygrunt.com Facebook: facebook.com/therealbunnygrunt —Christian Schaeffer

MOM

On “Revenge Is Ours,” the second track from Mom’s new self-titled album, singer Piper Williamson yelps, “Innocence doesn’t matter/Be true, be you.” That kind of assertive individuality is what the band is banking on, with break-neck drumming, wildly corrosive guitars and riot grrrl vocals that will curl your lip and get you swingin’. Even though punk has its own clear trappings, the genre bends wildly to the will of those who push its limits, and Mom is the band that’s lately been going on the offensive — a DIY lesson in how to rock and not give a fuck. The band excels in bubblegum gutterpunk that’s flashy, quick and timeless, an equally perfect soundtrack for lastminute protests or pool parties in deep south city. Mom is sure to bring out your inner activist or make you want to start a safety-pin collection. Recommended If You Like: Sleater-Kinney, Erase Errata, the Julie Ruin, Skin Tags Bandcamp: momstl.bandcamp.com/ album/mom —Kevin Korinek

FRANKIE VALET

Trading in the vintage 4-track for an iPhone, Frankie Valet pushes its newfangled indie gems out in good old-


fashioned lo-fi. Formerly known as the Sleepeasies, Jakob Nelson and company bring to mind those halcyon days when bands were discovered playing in their garages by record execs cruising through the neighborhood in a Camaro. Well, OK, if those myths were real and such a thing ever did actually happen, Frankie Valet would have no trouble making a living. But these are songs written between shifts of waiting tables, drowning under student-loan debt and spending what little money is left to drive across the country to play basements and house shows. Doesn’t that feel more honest? Recommended If You Like: The Strokes, Devo, Talking Heads Facebook: facebook.com/fkazzzezs Bandcamp: frankievalet.bandcamp.com —Joseph Hess

T-DUBB-O

St. Louis rapper T-Dubb-O (born Antoine White) has never been one to rest on his laurels, a fact that becomes more and more obvious as his accomplishments stack up higher and higher. He’s performed at AC3 and SXSW; he’s been featured on MSNBC, TeleSUR English, BET and BET France; he’s been written up in Hip Hop Weekly, Ebony, XXL and Rolling Stone; he spoke at the 2015 Drug Policy Reform Conference and had multiple meetings with Barack Obama during his presidency. But that recognition hasn’t softened White’s resolve to strive for the next goal. On his most recent release, December’s Money, Pleasure & Pain, his battle rap roots shine through in his aggressive delivery and in the immediate and visceral quality of his lyrics. Still, pop/trap tracks à la the Weeknd balance the heaviness of White’s lyricism, making his songs surprisingly easy listening. Recommended If You Like: Nipsey Hussle, Wiz Khalifa, SOB X RBE, the Weeknd Facebook: facebook.com/TDubbO Official: t-dubb-o.com —Nick Horn

MVSTERMIND

His moniker might sound like hyperbole, but with every passing month Mvstermind becomes a more fitting name for rapper and producer Muhammad Austin. With a bare-bones studio setup in the basement of his parents’ Spanish Lake home, Austin has managed to become recognizable on a national level thanks largely to a cleverness that seeps its way into nearly every aspect of his work, from his lyricism and production to his

branding, all the way to novel marketing ideas like tiered ticketing for his local performances. The sharp wit of Mvstermind’s lyrics is matched by his distinctive production style, which touches on the dream-pop of Little Dragon and the vaporwave sounds of Vektroid. While most artists default to one or the other, Mvstermind is one of a select few who have discovered how to work hard and smart. Recommended If You Like: J. Cole, Goldlink, Anderson.Paak, Saba, Kendrick Lamar Facebook: facebook.com/Mvstermind Official: mvstermind.com —Nick Horn

TEF POE

“I’m obligated to tell the truth,” spits Tef Poe at the start of the killer track “Blackballed” from his recent EP 24 Hours to Live. That truth is first and foremost of and for his streets, for those who live and die there and refuse to temper the rage about it all. If you don’t know those streets you can’t really understand Poe’s music: hard as cold black steel and as dense and mean and tight as trap music ever gets. In his self-fashioning, from his rhymes to his artwork, Poe gives no fucks about liberal hopes. Food stamps, gun control, Hillary Clinton, Obama, the black church: all lies to Poe and his crew. Earlier this year, he laid out a message for Kanye and his MAGA hat: “What the fuck, my n*gga? You using your powers for wrong…We love you, come back home.” St. Louis’ scene has never known a more honest or insatiable rapper, and with his recent signing to Tommy Boy Records, the rest of the world will soon know too. Recommended If You Like: Kanye West (pre-Trump), Run the Jewels, Young Jeezy, Public Enemy Official: tefpoe.com Facebook: facebook.com/tefpoe1 —Roy Kasten

GLUED

Glued is good at keeping everything together. Each guitar line seems more off-kilter than the last, each bass line moving independently at its own rhythm — but then everything snaps back in a series of head-nodding hooks and lifechanging choruses. The quartet has its roots in ’90s-era indie rock and Chicagostyle shoegaze, creating a south-city

soundscape all its own. Dueling guitar riffs rev the band’s engines before Chelsi Webster’s vocals cut through above the clash and din of her powerhouse drumming, offering a wobbly pop-scape of dreamy melodies that endures long after the song ends. Hot off the release of the brand-new, four-song EP Insides, available as a cassette with digital download, the band reaches into deep pockets of under-the-radar rock and shoegazes its way back to the stars above. Recommended If You Like: The Pixies, Autolux, Wye Oak, Cheatahs, DIIV Bandcamp: glued.bandcamp.com Facebook: facebook.com/gluedband —Kevin Korinek

KID SCIENTIST

It’s no wonder that Kid Scientist mastermind and frontman Joe Taylor became ERA Theatre’s musical director. With florid lyrics and flamboyant performances, Taylor’s music is ripe for a theatrical production — or, rather, productions, because 2017 EP A Report from the Future might need separate musicals for each of its songs, which inhabit their own distinct genres. The band’s range encompasses a dark cabaret rocker, a tense tango, a lightly trotting country ditty, a string-assisted piano ballad and much more. Numerous guest musicians give the EP a richly layered sound, but the core lineup of drummer Dave Moore, keyboardists Taylor and Audrey Morris, and interim bassist Brian McClelland more than fill up a room with a warm but punchy attack. This chemistry keeps Kid Scientist’s sound cohesive across its many styles, allowing Taylor to be the dashing star both in front of and behind the curtain. Recommended If You Like: The Decemberists, Ben Folds, the Dresden Dolls Facebook: facebook.com/kidscimusic Bandcamp: kidscientist.bandcamp.com —Bob McMahon

BLVCK SPVDE

On this year’s full-length release Hopeless and Romanticizing, the rapper and producer formerly known as Veto Lamar Money and Black Spade (he has since stylized out the “a’s”) takes his jazz and soul and down-tempo influences to wholly unexpected and thrilling places. He’s

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singing now, with a confident and subtle baritone, and exploring melodies straight out of Stevie Wonder, with lush arrangements that sound as sexually healing as Marvin Gaye. He hasn’t turned his back on hip-hop, not hardly, as his samples are delightfully obscure and his beats still deftly deconstructed. Though billed as a teaser for a full vocal-oriented workout to be titled BLVCK SPVDE and the Svmthngz-N-Nvthngz Sessions, the quasi-mixtape of Hopeless and Romanticizing is more than a sketchpad. It’s a fresh and exciting chapter for one of this city’s most celebrated musicians. Recommended If You Like: Stevie Wonder (circa Secret Life of Plants), Prince (circa Dirty Mind), J Dilla, Common Facebook: facebook.com/blackspadeofficial Soundcloud: soundcloud.com/vmoney2004 —Roy Kasten

THE KNUCKLES

Separately, Rockwell Knuckles and Aloha Misho are two shining lights within the St. Louis music community. Together, as the Knuckles, the artists are even more formidable, as the partnership magnifies their ambitious creative aspirations. That’s evident from the duo’s music — a shape-shifting amalgamation of slinky hip-hop, kaleidoscopic rap and soaring R&B — and versatile range. The low-key “Everybody Talking,” which features producer/rapper Laudie, boasts an unstoppable hook and midnight-dark beats, while the piano-sprinkled “So Much To Say” finds Misho showing off her striking, soulful voice. Then there’s the Trifecktaproduced “Party To Party”: With its dystopian electronic accents and bold lyrics (“We wasn’t invited/So we crashed it instead/We don’t speak your language/ But we’re doing our best”), the song doubles as the group’s manifesto. In other words, the Knuckles’ art is so compelling and unique, it demands attention and a seat at the table. Recommended If You Like: SZA, Kendrick Lamar, Alicia Keys, Andre 3000 Official: theknuckles.net/home Facebook: facebook.com/theknucklesband —Annie Zaleski Continued on pg 24

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GRACE BASEMENT

Kevin Buckley is a musical man about town. Every Monday night, he and Ian Walsh set up at McGurk’s, playing traditional Irish tunes under the moniker Keepin’ it Reel. At other times, the multiinstrumentalist can be found in local clubs and record stores kicking out the rock-folk jams as Grace Basement. Working with a core group of talented collaborators — guitarist Marc Schneider, bassist Greg Lamb and drummer Jill Aboussie — Buckley sounds confident and focused on the band’s fourth full-length, Mississippi Nights. Lush songwriting and airtight arrangements abound, no matter what the approach: mid-tempo, soultwang inflected ballads (“Standing On A Corner”), stomping rock & roll (the saxophone-driven storm “Rising Sun,” laissez-faire “Midnight Bell”) and pianoand fiddle-driven Britrock (the swinging, Oasis-esque “Summertime Is Coming”). In fact, Mississippi Nights might be Grace Basement’s best release yet — it’s a record for all moods and seasons. Recommended If You Like: The Waterboys, ’80s XTC, pre-Yankee Hotel Foxtrot Wilco Official: gracebasement.com Facebook: facebook.com/gracebasement —Annie Zaleski

GUERRILLA THEORY

If you’ve ever wondered whether renowned hometown heroes the Urge inspired younger groups, look to Guerrilla Theory for the band’s second coming. Awash in Sublime-era ska and easy-going rhythms, the six-piece outfit has more hits than a bong convention outside of Denver, blending a mish-mash of styles from hip-hop, reggae and alterna-rock

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to form its own party-centric sound. The band has been making its way around the local scene since 2015, playing to crowds at the Pageant, Delmar Hall and Pop’s, and it’s been steadily dropping videos on YouTube following last fall’s release of debut album G-OMETRY. Raise your beer and enjoy the good vibes. It’s 4:20 somewhere, right? Recommended If You Like: Incubus, Sublime, 311, Living Color, sideways ball caps, hangin’ witcha boyz, trombone reverb Official: guerrillatheory.com Facebook: facebook.com/GuerrillaTheory —Kevin Korinek

PINKCARAVAN!

Pinkcaravan! brings something fresh to the St. Louis hip-hop scene, with adept lyricism and novel beats that rival fellow female emcees of similar caliber. Since the release of her debut four-song EP A Very Sad Happy Birthday last year, the rapper has been riding a mounting wave of popularity that’s garnered thousands of clicks and even seen one of her songs added to the season two soundtrack of Netflix’s Dear White People, alongside big names including Tyler the Creator and Mayer Hawthorne. Produced by Namesake, Pinkcaravan! dives deep into innocence lost and coming to terms with getting older. Rhymes feel like they’re recited from a personal diary rather than sung — nonchalantly, almost effortlessly, as though mumbled in a group conversation you’re not meant to hear. But as you dig into those murmured lyrics, you’ll catch yourself leaning in closer with the rest of the crowd. Recommended If You Like: Missy Elliot, Noname, Childish Gambino, M.I.A. Soundcloud: soundcloud.com/pinkcaravan —Kevin Korinek

DREW GOWRAN

While plenty of music lovers have paid a cover to see Drew Gowran take sticks to

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skins as the drummer of several southcity rock outfits — his long tenure with Little Big Bangs comes to mind — any person who leaves his or her house might be treated to a free set just by walking down the street. Most people will just call it busking, but Gowran elevates the act of turning a sidewalk or patch of grass into a stage with a clear sense of performance and percussive muscle. His new album, Dismantle, shows Gowran picking apart years of forceful rock drumming, distilling his sound down to a focused set of bells, pot lids and found percussion. A film on the 30-year-old’s approach, “Busking On The Wagon,” will be screened at this year’s St. Louis Filmmakers Showcase. Recommended If You Like: YouTube videos of amazing drummers, Tim Daisy, Jon Mueller Facebook: facebook.com/DrewGowranmusic Bandcamp: drewgowran.bandcamp.com —Joseph Hess

FISTER

Many Fister releases are black, mystifying and as heavy as Stanley Kubrick’s monolith. The doom trio tends to release side-length slabs of song, from the 45-minute, one-track album IV a few years back to last fall’s split-single release with CHRCH (if you can call a twenty-minute track a “single”). So it’s something of a palate cleanser when the band’s just-released No Spirit Within opens with the relatively microscopic instrumental “Frozen Scythe,” which has hints of that Link Wray-style rumble-andtwang. The rest of the album follows the format that Kenny Snarzyk, Kirk Gatterer and Marcus Newstead have been refining for almost ten years: sludgy tempos, soul-scraping vocals and a seemingly tantric desire to slowly but surely remove your soul from the pit of your bowels. Recommended If You Like: Boris, Earth,

Sleep Bandcamp: fister.bandcamp.com/music Facebook: facebook.com/fisterdoom —Christian Schaeffer

KAREN CHOI

Karen Choi’s life and travels have led her all around the Midwest and some points north and south. Raised in Nebraska, the current St. Louis resident recorded her last album, 2016’s Through Our Veins, in Minnesota. Tracks such as “Road to Tennessee” and “Kentucky Hills” suggest that the landscape and music of the South animates her art, and a twangy lilt gives a country flavor to her largely acoustic songs. To our ears, though, the gentle waltz of “Mississippi River Heart” is an ode to St. Louis — or some lucky soul living here — and Choi had a busy spring gigging around her adopted hometown with shows at the Sheldon and the Tap Room. Lately she has been backed by scene vets Tony Barbata (drums) and Stephen Nowels (bass), but Choi’s voice stands at the center of her songs regardless of who is behind her. Recommended If You Like: Over the Rhine, Shelby Lynne, Kathleen Edwards Official: karenchoimusic.com Facebook: facebook.com/karenchoimusic —Christian Schaeffer

THE ST. LOUIS STEADY GRINDERS In some ways, the union of Valerie Kirchhoff and Ethan Leinwand feels pre-ordained. She has worked the local jazz-and-blues scene as the titular Miss Jubilee (with and without the Humdingers), while he moved to town a few years back to be near to the source of pre-war, low-down piano blues. Together as the St. Louis Steady Grinders, the pair digs into a rich, underappreciated catalog of piano rags and blues from the 1920s and ’30s. And while their tutelage has brought them


acclaim in town (thanks in part to last year’s self-titled album), the pair has also started booking gigs overseas. It appears booking agents in the United Kingdom and Austria have taken a liking to their iteration of St. Louis’ blues. Recommended If You Like: Victoria Spivey, Stump Johnson, late nights at BB’s Jazz, Blues & Soups Facebook: facebook.com/steadygrinders —Christian Schaeffer

STACEY WINTER

2017 was the year that Kit Hamon stepped away from his role as a sideman and support player and introduced his pop-hedonist alter-ego, Stacey Winter. While his musical gifts were far from secret for those who have caught him backing up his wife, Beth Bombara, on drums, bass and keys, the six-song We’re Both Right Now rendered a pop-centric vision in kaleidoscopic hues of bright synths, propulsive beats and an airy falsetto. Opening track “Lines” offers up the Prince-ian dopamine rush that Of Montreal used to excel in, while “Love or Money” floats in like a Quiet Storm ballad. While Right Now was largely self-recorded, Hamon occasionally assembles a live band to bring these well-constructed jams to life; don’t sleep on it the next time he does. Recommended If You Like: Hot Chip, Ned Doheny, Jamie Lidell, Unknown Mortal Orchestra Facebook: facebook.com/StaceyWinter-

Music Official: www.staceywinter.com —Christian Schaeffer

ADAM MANESS TRIO

A good jazz gig is a little like eavesdropping on a private conversation; the band is aware of the audience but is often more invested in the interpersonal communication happening on the bandstand. Watching the Adam Maness Trio work through its weekly gig at Thurman’s in the Shaw neighborhood is a little like creeping on an inside joke between pianist Maness, bassist Bob Deboo and drummer Montez Coleman as they rip through jazz standards and an increasingly varied array of covers from acts that have included Outkast and Nine Inch Nails. The cheekily named Y98 AM set on Soundcloud gives a taste of the group’s high art/pop culture pedigree: “Elegie” channels some moody trip-hop as well as classical flourish via Bjorn Ranheim’s cello, while “Everybody Wants to Rule the World” takes the Tears for Fears classic off your MTV screen and into the speakeasy. Recommended If You Like: Brad Mehldau, The Bad Plus, Vijay Iyer Soundcloud: soundcloud.com/adammanesstrio —Christian Schaeffer

SMIDLEY

The rush of national acclaim and devoted fandom that accompanied Foxing’s

ascent a few years back has shown little sign of abating. The group’s third record was produced with former Death Cab for Cutie guitarist Chris Walla, and national tours have been priming the pump for the LP’s release. But amid Foxing’s busy schedule, singer, songwriter and itinerant trumpet player Conor Murphy found time to emerge as Smidley, his more indie-rock-centric alter ego. Smidley’s selftitled 2017 album was a pop-focused antidote to Murphy’s other band and its cathartic, performative update of emo, and on it Murphy found a way to make isolation both danceable (“Fuck This”) and harrowing (“Milkshake”). Recommended If You Like: Broken Social Scene, New Pornographers, Tiger’s Jaw, the trumpet player from Foxing Official: smidleyband.com Facebook: facebook.com/smidleymurphy —Christian Schaeffer

THE MIGHTY PINES

On its new live album, the Mighty Pines included a cover of Chuck Berry’s “No Particular Place to Go.” Recorded in 2017, the year Chuck moved into the eternal Hall of Fame in the sky, the local sortabluegrass, sorta-jam band was certainly honoring a local legend, but by tipping a cap to rock & roll’s premier architect, the Mighty Pines embraced its own rock & roll aspirations as well. As the band has tightened its chops and played increasingly bigger stages through a rigorous touring schedule, it has gradually less-

ened its reliance on acoustic folk and assembled a sound that honors American roots music in its many iterations. Recommended If You Like: Trampled By Turtles, the Steeldrivers, Carbon Leaf Facebook: facebook.com/themightypines Bandcamp: themightypines.bandcamp. com —Christian Schaeffer

DESIRE LINES

Named for human-made or naturally eroded paths that cut through a landscape (if not a great album by Camera Obscura), Desire Lines is the latest incarnation of musician Jenny Roques, best known perhaps for her country endeavors with Arson for Candy and Jenny and the Late Nite, though she also performs with lo-fi garage-y bands Tortuga and JOANofDARK. The fetching Midwestern twang in Roques’ voice is ineradicable, and that’s a very good thing. She’s one of the most instantly recognizable and winning vocalists in town. And while Desire Lines occasionally performs in minimalist configurations, its sound, which is just beginning to come together, has taken a moodier, darker, heavy-rock tone, expanded with the full backing of Matt Pace, Sam Golden, Brien Seyle and Ryan Adams. It’s an ace lineup, and Roques has the experience and songs to lead this band down fresh paths. Recommended If You Like: PJ Harvey, Continued on pg 26

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HELPING SCHLAFLY NAME: Colby Rizzo ROLE: Brewery Maintenance YEARS WITH SCHLAFLY: 2 RESIDES IN: University City WHAT DO YOU LIKE ABOUT YOUR JOB? I enjoy working for Schlafly because it’s challenging and has given me opportunities to learn new things. It's great to work for a company that gets a lot of recognition in the city of St. Louis. © 2018 The Saint Louis Brewery LLC, Saint Louis, MO

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Neko Case, Patti Smith, Throwing Muses Facebook: facebook.com/DesireLines Bandcamp: desirelinesstl.bandcamp. com/releases —Roy Kasten

TONINA SAPUTO

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Tonina Saputo is one to watch forever. The recent Berklee College of Music grad has hit the ground running and found sure footing in her hometown of St. Louis, where the community has embraced her as one of its own. In addition to being a regular performer at the Dark Room and the National Blues Museum, she’s lent her immeasurable talents to Pokey LaFarge and Looprat, and she recently wrapped up a brief European tour on the heels of a Spanish-language release titled Black Angel. A vision of Esperanza Spalding with a dash of Norah Jones, the accomplished upright bassist has developed her own take on Latin rhythms and folk-soul. While her jazz renditions give head nods to funk icons, it’s her singular voice that you have to experience in person — truly one of those “once in a lifetime” voices. Fluttering from a soulful whisper to a wind in the breeze, it starts at a murmur before it unfolds into movement. Recommended If You Like: Norah Jones, Esperanza Spalding, Tracey Chapman, world music Official: iamtonina.com/home Facebook: facebook.com/iamtonina —Kevin Korinek

BATES

To say that Bates works hard might be the understatement of the year. Born Tamara Dodd, the emcee designed her own website, handles her own distribution and books all of her own performances. She even writes and directs her music videos (she’s released four in the past year alone). In addition to the work she puts into her own creative endeavors, Bates is the founder and driving force behind FemFest, an annual event featuring performances from the women of the St. Louis music scene. The festival’s most recent and largest iteration, held in February at 2720 Cherokee, featured 54 artists across two stages. Even the most cursory listen to her music reveals a sense of the almost frighteningly intense, focused energy that drives the St. Louis rapper. Bates lives every day — and drops every bar — like it’s her last. Recommended If You Like: 2Pac, Eminem, Young Ma, Twista Facebook: facebook.com/BatesSTL Official: www.bates-stl.com —Nick Horn

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SORRY, SCOUT

Those seeking a good example of vocal range need look no further than Sorry, Scout’s Randi Whitaker. Moving from an operatic vibrato one moment to a snarling growl the next, Whitaker finds a place to incorporate these tones seamlessly while also mixing in a bit of soul — think Freddy Mercury joining a punk band that happened to record for Motown. The band was formed from a friendship Whitaker developed during open mic nights with former Kentucky Knife Fight guitarist Nate Jones, after which the two worked diligently to find the right rhythm section in bassist Dave Anson and drummer Zack Shultz. The combination is a powerhouse of styles: Jones’ tasteful earwig riffs provides a counterpoint to Whitaker’s melodies, and Anson almost sounds like Mike Watt at moments, as Shultz lays down a backbeat that is too hard to be called busy, yet too intricate to be called boring. Recommended If You Like: Mother Love Bone, Fiona Apple Facebook: facebook.com/sorryscout —Jeremy Essig

18ANDCOUNTING

18andCounting is the moniker under which multidisciplinary artist Stan Chisholm creates his work — visual, sonic and otherwise. When it comes to Chisholm’s original music (he also DJs), 18andCounting could be described generally as avantgarde hip-hop, but that label is probably vague enough to be virtually useless. More specifically, 18andCounting creates dark, brooding electronic atmospheres that exist on a spectrum from desolately sparse to suffocatingly dense. Over them, Chisholm rhymes cryptic verses with a delivery that’s somewhere between MC Ride and Schoolboy Q. Live, 18andCounting is accompanied by TheOnlyEnsemble, comprising Sarah Vie on violin, Brennan England on slide didgeridoo and both HAI Q and Patrick Boland on drums. Together, the group creates a sound that’s more organic but every bit as enigmatic and heavy as Chisholm’s electronic compositions. Recommended If You Like: Death Grips, Bjork, Lorn, Billy Woods Facebook: facebook. com/18andCounting Official: 18andcounting.com —Nick Horn

APEX SHRINE

Starting a band based on your parent’s record collection can be a dicey proposition, but Apex Shrine is the best-case scenario of this process. The quartet trades in psychedelic rock rooted in the blues, and though this style is much old-


er than the band’s members, it sounds fresh when played with such talent and enthusiasm. Brothers Jack and Dan Eschmann wow with scorching guitar solos and upper-register vocals that would do Cream proud. New drummer A.J. Lane throws a touch of jazz behind the kit while sacrificing none of the power or precision the band needs, and bassist Brandon Pesek keeps everything coherent with his steady playing. Apex Shrine’s tight chemistry and walloping attack serve songwriting that just keeps getting better — the group has diversified its tempos, rhythms and sounds while maintaining its identity. As long as groups like Apex Shrine exist, rock is not dead. Recommended If You Like: Cream, Free, Led Zeppelin Facebook: facebook.com/apexshrine Bandcamp: apexshrine.bandcamp.com —Bob McMahon

JR. CLOONEY

Calling Jr. Clooney “math rock” isn’t wrong. The label gives those unfamiliar with the band a pretty accurate idea of what it might sound like: pristine clean guitar lines deftly weaving their way through complex meter changes, the occasional burst of tight distortion highlighting a bit of crunchy dissonance. But oftentimes, the same characteristics that attract die-hard listeners of the genre — dazzling displays of technical prowess coupled with an aversion to sounds that strike the players as too conventional — come across to others as overwrought and self-indulgent. Jr. Clooney manages to check all the genre’s boxes without losing a more general accessibility. Instead of sounding like a brilliant mathematician hard at work on an elaborate formula, the band’s music comes across more like a gifted child with a very active imagination — Jr. Clooney is cute, it’s nerdy and it probably has a bright future

ahead of it. Recommended If You Like: Toe, CHON, Minus the Bear, Pat Metheny Group Facebook: facebook.com/ jr.clooneymusic Bandcamp: jrclooney.bandcamp.com —Nick Horn

BLACK FAST

Black Fast. It’s difficult to come up with two words that better encapsulate the Edwardsville band’s razor-sharp neothrash sound than its own name. “Black” captures the sense of utter hopelessness and nihilism of the band’s lyrics (on “Colony Collapse,” for instance, vocalist/guitarist Aaron Akin shrieks “Infinite glare/ ancient despair/empty of dreams”). “Fast” captures, well, pretty much every other aspect of the band’s suffocatingly tight tech metal. Akin and the rest of the rhythm section pummel listeners with riff after riff, at breakneck speed, while lead guitarist Trevor Johanson shreds his way through screaming solos with frightening precision. All of the above makes for a punishingly intense live show, but the sore neck is well worth it. Recommended If You Like: Vektor, Havok, Goatwhore, early Metallica Facebook: facebook.com/BlackFast/ Official: blackfastmusic.com —Nick Horn

SHADY BUG

It’s hard not to catch a case of the warm and fuzzies when you’re listening to Shady Bug. Led by vocalist/guitarist Hannah Rainey, the four-piece utilizes the classic grunge soft-LOUD-soft-LOUD formula to great effect, with guitars alternating between woozy, chorused clean tones à la Mac DeMarco and massive, fuzzed-out sounds reminiscent of early Weezer. On their debut tbh idk, released in April 2017, both Rainey and guitarist Tom Krenning bend notes endearingly out

of tune throughout, while bassist Todd Anderson and drummer Aaron O’Neill lay down grooves that alternate between mellow and pounding. Rainey’s delightfully chilled-out delivery allows the sentimentality of her lyrics to be affecting without ever becoming cloying, and the band as a whole manages to project a pleasantly and purposefully frayed aesthetic. Recommended If You Like: Ian Sweet, Melkbelly, Palm, Dubb Nubb, Glued Facebook: facebook.com/shadybuggg Bandcamp: shadybug.bandcamp.com —Nick Horn

SHITSTORM

A Shitstorm, by its very nature, is in a constant state of flux, and this one is no different. At the eye of this particular Shitstorm is Matt Stuttler, who first performed under the name in October 2013. Back then it was just Stuttler, his guitar and a cassette recording of the drum beat from a thrift-store organ. In the years since, the doo-doo downpour has soaked Karl Frank, Andy Kahn and Austin Fogel (on guitar, bass and drums, respectively) who now work alongside Stuttler to help achieve his ghoulish goal of reverb-drenched psychedelic garagepunk. What’s next? Who the fuck knows? One thing’s for sure, though: It’s gonna get messy. Recommended If You Like: The Cramps, 13th Floor Elevators, King Tuff Facebook: facebook.com/shitstormstl Bandcamp: shitstormstl.bandcamp.com —Nick Horn

TRAVELING SOUND MACHINE In rock music, you get to do anything you want. This conventional wisdom has its hazards, but in the case of Traveling Sound Machine the adage makes for consistently rewarding results. The band is

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all about dynamics, driven by the terrific rhythm section of Steve Larson and Dave Anson, who push every song into new moods and new vistas, even as mournful trumpets and wheezy squeeze-box tones intertwine with already intricately knitted guitars. Due out in June, the band’s first full-length album, The Time We Were Almost Swallowed by the Earth, promises to build on its foundation of emotionally charged, unapologetically word-drunk songs for indie-rock true believers. Recommended If You Like: Okkervil River, the National, Bright Eyes, Foxing Official: travelingsoundmachine.com Facebook: facebook.com/Travelingsoundmachine —Roy Kasten

GAVIN M.

Who says you can’t judge a songwriter by his covers? In the case of Gavin M. — who has of late floated out a raft of reworkings of songs by the likes of Fleetwood Mac, Dawes, St. Louis’ own LéPonds and even the inescapable David Bowie and Bob Dylan — the choices reveal a songwriter happy to embrace his heroes and learn from them. But the uniform quality of his prolific cover tunes wouldn’t mean much if he didn’t have anything to say in his own right. Gavin M. does. Earlier this year he released the EP Where Do You Call Home?, a spare and acoustic love letter to St. Louis that’s also shot through with the pain of a recent divorce. Gavin M.’s expert tunefulness and deliciously rasped and snarling delivery drive every song home. Recommended If You Like: Paul Westerberg, the Smiths, Lindsey Buckingham, John Wesley Harding Official: gavin-m.com Facebook: facebook.com/gavinmmusic —Roy Kasten

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BROTHERS LAZAROFF

Rock & roll is forever, but rock & roll bands aren’t — especially when they’re as big and adventurous and perfectionist as Brothers Lazaroff. Somehow the siblings are celebrating nine full years with their core rhythm section of Grover Stewart and Teddy Brookins in place, and have recently brought on Mark Hochberg (violin) and Sam Golden (keyboards, guitar, violin) as full-time members. Often sprawling to eight or nine pieces, the group shifts and reshapes itself as mood and occasion demand. Whether throwing down in the tiny space of the Tick Tock Tavern for a regular residency, improvising across the posh Jazz St. Louis stage or stretching out at a fire-codepushing gig at Joe’s Cafe, the veterans have found a long-lasting formula: Produce new material at a dizzying pace and groove like there’s no tomorrow. Recommended If You Like: Wilco, the Meters, the Grateful Dead, Leonard Cohen Official: brotherslazaroff.com Facebook: facebook.com/brotherslazaroffmusic —Roy Kasten

THE HOMEWRECKERS

Jangly but anxious, melodic but punchy, the music of the Homewreckers will sound familiar to anyone raised on the most melodic side of ’90s college rock — R.E.M. and the Replacements and the Smithereens — but this band is anything but slavish to the sounds of its wasted youth. Its 2015 album Dead City deserved more notice than it received, and last year’s single “Always a Stranger/ Burying the Past” should have been a

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double A-sided hit on any power-pop junkie’s playlist. Led by Mike Fitzsimmons, one of this town’s most underrated guitarists and a terrific tunesmith as well, the band is completed by Mike Evans on guitar, Chris Keale on drums and Jon Parsons on bass, all of whom, it should be noted, contribute some of the sweetest harmony vocals of any rock & roll band in town. Recommended If You Like: The Gin Blossoms, Tom Petty, the Kinks, Nadine Facebook: facebook.com/TheHomewreckersSTL Bandcamp: thehomewreckersstl.bandcamp.com —Roy Kasten

DJ NUNE/LAMAR HARRIS If Lamar Harris isn’t the hardest-working man in St. Louis music, he’s gunning for the title. An accomplished jazzman and music instructor, as well as a DJ of both the on-air variety and the club style, Harris isn’t content just to play dance-floor hits. As DJ Nune he will do that, but he chops and screws them with his not-sosecret weapon (the trombone) and live drumming (most often courtesy of Dirtylynt), and, what the hell, he’ll throw in tuba and keyboards too when the mood strikes. His mixes are true arrangements, somehow both retro and futuristic at once, and his idea of a party is when every single ass cuts loose, because he knows the mind always follows. Recommended If You Like: Flying Lotus, Illphonics, Frankie Knuckles, the Roots Official: thelamarharris.com Facebook: facebook.com/djnuneislamarharris —Roy Kasten

RAILHAZER

With an opening bell of massive feed-

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back, Railhazer decries any sense of subtly and goes for the throat on its debut record, The Null and the Void. More than 40 minutes proceed with a sonorous and slow-moving sludge that carries a strong sense of narrative. Lush lyricism is delivered with a refreshingly wide range by vocalist Matt Mathias. While prog rock does bubble up through the swampy sound, the stylistic rip only adds a distinct sheen to what is, unmistakably, metal. Since releasing The Null and the Void last July, Railhazer has only sharpened its edges while playing with the likes of Thou, Black Tar Prophet and Druids. Recommended If You Like: Eyehategod, Neurosis, tabletop role-playing games Facebook: facebook.com/railhazer Bandcamp: railhazer.bandcamp.com —Joseph Hess

MO EGESTON

There’s cool, and then there’s Maurice “Mo” Egeston cool. A virtuoso arranger and band leader, Egeston’s way with pianos and synthesizers is supremely confident and inspired. His melodies glide and then leap, from improvisation

to improvisation, fueled by Afro-Cuban touches and whole lot of house and funk music, and lit up by an all-star band that includes Duane “Jingo” Williams on percussion, Eric “Snoopy” Tyler on bass and Grover Stewart Jr. on drums. The band’s 2017 release Groove Suites Vol. 1 is essential late-night jazz-soul, and its current residency at the Dark Room regularly features R&B and hip-hop heavy hitters such as Thelonius Kryptonite and Coco Rochelle. Nu jazz has never sounded so soulful. Recommended If You Like: Herbie Hancock, Stevie Wonder, St Germain, Urban Jazz Naturals Official: moegeston.com Facebook: facebook.com/MoEAllStars —Roy Kasten

THE POTOMAC ACCORD Fourteen years is a long time — long enough to matriculate through grade school, high school and two years at junior college, long enough to see two consecutive marriages go bust as a result of the seven-year itch, and long enough for


an adventurous piano-led indie-rock trio to release a follow-up to its 2003 album. That’s what the Potomac Accord did in 2017, and that LP, Beams, retains much of the freshness and boundary-pushing that helped the Potomac Accord stand out amid numerous garage-rock and altcountry bands at the turn of the century. Andrew Benn serves as the band’s engine, both as its melodic centerpiece on piano and with his slightly idiosyncratic vocals, reminiscent of a more straightlaced Wayne Coyne, while Jerry Green and Joe Willis add muscle in the rhythm section. Recommended If You Like: Dr. Dog, Midlake, Granddaddy, Shearwater. Facebook: facebook.com/thepotomacaccord Bandcamp: thepotomacaccord.bandcamp.com —Christian Schaeffer

ERIC DONTÉ

As mantras go, “nobody cares/work harder” sounds like a mixed bag. Eric Donte’s track from last year, “Nothing,” uses that phrase as a cri de coeur, an exhortation toward self-actualization and

a reminder that an artist’s true audience is always the artist himself. It’s been a lesson that the rapper and vocalist has had to learn through a series of especially hard knocks, but his perseverance helps his 2016 EP God Don’t Like Ugly vibrate and has garnered him fans and followers across several genres. Even Foxing’s Conor Murphy has repped Donte’s talents, and the band will have him open a hometown show this coming June. It throws into relief the “nobody cares” part of his mantra, but “work harder” seems permanently etched into the young artist’s psyche. Recommended If You Like: moody atmospherics, the best blend of emo and hip-hop, teddy bears Soundcloud: soundcloud.com/eric-donte —Christian Schaeffer

MAD KEYS

Brandon McCadney may seem like a standard-bearing beatmaker at first glance. The instrumental tracks on his debut LoveWaves EP have enough of a rise and fall to make sense as standalone songs, but your ears are already filling in where a lyricist could wrap

themselves in his electric pianos and woozy synths. Indeed, the guest vocalists on the album, Orlando Vaughn and Teresajenee, fit nicely with McCadney’s Soulquarian vibes. But as Mad Keys, McCadney produces a warm, jazz-flecked space for listeners, and he kicks at the corners of the soft contours of urban lounge music with his classically trained violin flourishes, adding a crucial voice to his producer’s palette. Recommended If You Like: Regina Carter, Robert Glasper, D’Angelo Official: itsmadkeys.com Bandcamp: madkeys.bandcamp.com —Christian Schaeffer

PONO AM

You’d be forgiven for dismissing Pono AM’s single “Good Vibes” on its title alone, or at least for being fearful of the phrase being followed by “Only” and appearing on some vape-bro’s T-shirt at the nearest music festival. But the hazy jangle of the band’s lead-off track from last year’s three-song Here’s Pono AM vibrates with a winning lackadaisical flair — it sounds as if each member recorded in his own corner of some suburban wood-paneled basement with only passing awareness of his bandmates’ presence. That looseness doesn’t dull the song’s simple and direct chorus, which led the RFT’s Evan Sult to dub it the song of last summer. You’ll find it holds up pretty well in 2018 as well. Recommended If You Like: Ariel Pink, Mac Demarco, Allah-Las Facebook: facebook.com/ponoamstl Bandcamp: ponoam.bandcamp.com —Christian Schaeffer

ANDREW RYAN & THE TRAVELERS A few years ago, Andrew Ryan was more likely to be found behind the drum kit

riverfronttimes.com

than in front of a rock & roll band. But as the guitarist, singer and songwriter of Andrew Ryan & the Travelers, he’s taken the move from beat-keeper to bandleader in stride, and the group’s debut album Across Currents shows the band’s knack for Americana colors and Telecaster twang. Ryan wrote many of these songs during out-of-town stints as a construction worker, and the time away from home gives shading to his songs about people caught between commitments and desires. Ryan’s whispered vocals demand intimacy, and the Travelers’ supple instrumentation — especially Marie Marotti’s backing vocals — help to fill out the corners of these songs. Recommended If You Like: Whiskeytown, Great Lake Swimmers, Okkervil River Official: andrewryanandthetravelers.com Facebook: facebook.com/Andrewryanandthetravelers —Christian Schaeffer

BEN DIESEL

Let’s pretend for a moment that famed thespian Vin Diesel had a younger, pudgier brother who was less inclined to muscle cars and more enamored with pop-punk. In this scenario, what he lacks in bone density and brawn, Ben Diesel makes up for in riffs, harmony and smart-assery. The local foursome isn’t shy about its influences — the band has paid tribute to both Green Day and Blink-182 in the past few years — but its split EP (with the likeminded souls in Stars Go Out) show that Ben Diesel has weaponized sophomoric, web 2.0 humor and mastered the crunch and bounce of its pop-punk forebears. Recommended If You Like: New Found Glory, Jimmy Eat World, your old STLpunk.com account, shitposting Facebook: facebook.com/BenDieselSTL Continued on pg 30

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STL 77

Continued from pg 29

Bandcamp: bendieselstl.bandcamp.com —Christian Schaeffer

CUE COLDBLOODED

With the release of 2017’s Yourz Truly, Preston “Cue ColdBlooded” Bradley has distilled his work as one half of the Domino Effect and expanded his own approach to hip-hop as a whole. The record itself cuts to the core, particularly on “Fly Away,” a track we named as one of the ten best songs by St. Louis artists in 2017. Here he wears many hats — an emcee, beatmaker and producer — and manages to keep a conscious and consistent vibe across the album. Lyrically

there’s a lot to digest, but between the smooth delivery and the subtle subversion of expectations, Bradley carries the weight of both heavy and heady subjects with ease befitting a veteran rapper. Recommended If You Like: Lupe Fiasco, Kanye West, Kendrick Lamar Facebook: facebook.com/CueColdBlooded Bandcamp: cuecoldblooded.bandcamp. com —Joseph Hess

SISTER WIZZARD

Madison Price transmits a charming sense of fearlessness when she takes the stage as Sister Wizzard. Often her songs are unadorned — a mostly-in-tune electric guitar and a spare drum ma-

chine beat was all she needed when Sister Wizzard started making the rounds in early 2017; a few of those live sets comprise her sole recorded output and are available for sampling on her Bandcamp page. These days Price often fills out her sound with a three-piece band, but her approach, which is both clear-eyed and full of wonderment, transmits its magnetism no matter the setting. Recommended If You Like: Jenny Lewis, Waxahatchee, Anna Burch, the Chiffons Facebook: facebook.com/sisterwizzard Bandcamp: sisterwizzard.bandcamp.com —Christian Schaeffer

RYAN KOENIG

Ryan Koenig’s 2017 solo LP, Two Different Worlds, found the throwback country

iconoclast crafting heartfelt story-songs on which his creased-leather voice takes center stage. The musician’s simple Facebook bio underscores his collaborative approach to music, however: “Been playing music for some time now, with people I’ve known for some time now. Trying to have been a friend to a friend everywhere I have been.” Those pals certainly stepped up after a December 2017 accident left Koenig with hefty medical bills. A YouCaring fundraiser brought in more than $30,000, which provided the musician enough of a cushion to recuperate at home and get back to doing what he does best: play music with his buds. Koenig is, of course, a core member of Pokey LaFarge’s band, which gave him a chance to play on Jack Continued on pg 32

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Recommended If You Like: The Joy Formidable, Slow Dive, Beach House Facebook: facebook.com/dttvstl Bandcamp: daytimetv.bandcamp.com

STL 77

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White’s Blunderbuss; he also performs with fellow vintage country purveyor Jack Grelle and has over a decade under his belt with ramshackle blues-folk act Rum Drum Ramblers. Recommended If You Like: AM radio stations playing classic country, a laid-back afternoon at the Newport Folk Festival Official: ryankoenigstl.com Facebook: facebook.com/Ryan-Koenig707338392703209 —Annie Zaleski

DAYTIME TELEVISION

Since forming in the fall of 2017, Daytime Television has been on a total tear. The band’s dreamscape of fuzzed-out pop can be heard across three separate EPs — all released within roughly six months of each other. Between singer Ysabel Johnston’s soaring voice and the melodic collision of guitars, it’s no wonder the band has already played local flagships such as Strange Folk Festival and Vintage Vinyl’s Record Store Day celebration, not to mention the Old Rock House and Ready Room. The band’s shoegaze sound hits like a heavy, lumbering giant — one that may well grow too big for the river city to hold in another year’s time.

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—Joseph Hess

ILLPHONICS

The classic band trajectory involves an initial burst of inspiration, followed by a steady increase in quality, and then a creative plateau once the group is established and in a groove. A decade into their career, however, the members of Illphonics are anything but complacent. On the heels of 2015’s powerful “The Brown Frequency” and 2016’s inventive Gone with the Trends, in addition to a coveted slot on the 2016 LouFest lineup, the liveband hip-hop troupe released 2017’s excellent Purple Piano Society. Emcee Larry “Fallout” Morris told the RFT last year the latter album “kind of represents where we’re going as a group,” in no small part because the band members mixed things up while recording it. “What makes this album so special is that we all sat in a room together and switched — everybody did something a little different.” The results are typically eclectic — Illphonics combines elements of rap, hiphop, funk and soul in adventurous ways, illustrating once again why the group remains one of the best in the city.

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Recommended If You Like: OutKast, Lupe Fiasco, Stevie Wonder, Public Enemy Official: illphonics.net Facebook: facebook.com/illphonicssound —Annie Zaleski

Throwing Muses Official: thedefeatedcounty.com Facebook: facebook.com/pg/thedefeatedcounty —Annie Zaleski

DEFEATED COUNTY

NECESSITIES

It’s tough to put a unique spin on indiefolk these days, but the Defeated County defies the odds. As demonstrated by 2016’s Bar Tabs & Baby Names, the band specialize in haunting songs that touch on gothic Americana, low-desert twang, fuzzy ’90s rock curios and vaudevillian waltzes. Credit for this eclectic approach goes first and foremost to lead vocalist/rhythm guitarist/songwriter Langen Neubacher. Her singular voice — which possesses a Kristin Hersh-esque dusky timbre, coupled with hints of Maria McKee’s country lilt and Amanda Palmer’s dramatic flourishes — drives evocative songs that aren’t afraid to dig into uncomfortable places or ask tough questions. Her Defeated County bandmates — including the live rotation of Irene Allen, Devon Cahill, Simon Chervitz, Russ McCanless and Kyle Rex — are the perfect foil for her ambitious vision. On record, the band enlists a who’s who of south-city musicians to add occasional violin, pedal steel, accordion and extra harmonies. Recommended If You Like: Neko Case, PJ Harvey, Nick Cave, Dresden Dolls,

“Beauty rests on necessities,” wrote Ralph Waldo Emerson, that sage of Concord, Massachusetts, who believed that simplicity and economy were the pathway to godliness. One look at the barrage of blinking, brightly colored guitar pedals employed by the local trio Necessities would seem to challenge Emerson’s dictum. But the polyrhythmic pop band’s genesis was indeed born of a casting off: the dissolution of three distinct local bands — the pop-savvy Dots Not Feathers, noise-dance duo Volcanoes and earnest glitch-rock trio Bear Hive — brought Stephen Baier, Jon Ryan and Chris Phillips together. Their bond began with mutual admiration and friendship but moved on to making spindly, riff-centric rock songs that, yes, use a battery of effects pedals, but also give creative contours to Phillips’ lyrics and delivery. Recommended If You Like: Don Caballero, So Many Dynamos, Mutemath Bandcamp: necessities.bandcamp.com Facebook: www.facebook.com/necessitiesband —Christian Schaeffer


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FRIDAY, JUN 15 THE BIG WU, ROOTS OF A REBELLION $15, 6PM AT ATOMIC COWBOY

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SHOWCASE STL 60+ BANDS

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$5, 8PM AT THE READY ROOM

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FRIDAY, JUN 22 SCHOOL’S OUT COMEDY SHOWCASE

7:30PM AT THE MONOCLE

$5, 8PM AT THE READY ROOM

WEDNESDAY, JUN 20 CHROMA GRAND OPENING PARTY 5-7:30PM AT CHROMA STL

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36

CALENDAR

BY PAUL FRISWOLD

Adam Flores as the Fool in a 2017 rehearsal shot of Blow, Winds. | J. DAVID LEVY

THURSDAY 06/14 RiffTrax Live Space Mutiny belongs to the galaxy of sci-fi films that were produced in the wake of Star Wars. It has a square-jawed space pilot (Reb Brown), a scheming villain (John Phillip Law) and love interest (Cisse Cameron, who married Reb Brown in real life), and special effects. Not great ones, though. All the shots of the ships in space were licensed from the original Battlestar Galactica series, which are OK, but the interior of the giant spaceship where all the other action takes place has three rooms, the stars travel by barely modified floor buffers and there’s a lot of AstroTurf. Mystery Science Theatre 3000 famously skewered the film, but most of the fame accorded comes

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from the ridiculous names made up for Brown’s hero — Bolt Van der Huge and Thick McRunfast not the least of them. Tonight at 7 p.m., the RiffTrax crew (Mike Nelson, Bill Corbett and Kevin Murphy are all veterans of that episode of MST3K) take a second crack at their Citizen Kane with RiffTrax Live: Space Mutiny. You can see the special live broadcast at the Marcus Wehrenberg Ronnies Cine (5320 South Lindbergh Boulevard; www.fathomevents. com). Tickets are $12.50.

FRIDAY 06/15 Gateway Men’s Chorus The Gateway Men’s Chorus intentionally finishes its season in June. June is Pride Month, and the last

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show of the GMC season is always a celebration. This year’s show is titled Love Is All You Need, and if you know anything about popular music you’re already fired up. It’s an entire evening of the music of the Beatles — most especially the love songs. The group will join voices to sing of love, of friendship and of loss; imagine those famous harmonies being sung by a sizable male choir and you know it will be something special. Love Is All You Need is performed at 8 p.m. Friday through Sunday (June 15 to 17) at the Ivory Theatre (7620 Michigan Avenue; www.gmcstl. org). Tickets are $20 to $25.

Blow, Winds June is not the usual month for Shakespeare in the Streets to take the open spaces of a neighborhood to present a new play inspired by one of Shakespeare’s originals.

That normally happens in September, when there’s a chance those streets won’t be as hot. But last autumn Olive Street in front of the Central Branch of the St. Louis Public Library was far too hot for a play. In the days following the acquittal of former police officer Jason Stockley on murder charges, protesters were demonstrating for justice on that very street — and police were strenuously attempting to contain them. Both the city and Shakespeare in the Streets agreed that it wasn’t quite the right time or place to put on a play. Nancy Bell’s Blow, Winds, which is inspired by King Lear, drifted away like so much tear gas fired into a crowd of civilians: agonizingly slowly. Tom Martin was one of the directors working on Blow, Winds, and the phantom limb of Bell’s unseen play pains him still. “It was devastating,” Martin says of the choice to cancel. “It’s one of the hardest thing I’ve had to do. We hoped we could at least get one performance, but I talked to our security guys and they said, ‘There’s a protest in the area and it was getting dark.’” In that, they weren’t referring to nightfall. “I came down and there were guys running through the set, tearing up the chairs. Police were chasing them, shooting plastic bullets as they went,” Martin says quietly. “We had a lot of expensive equipment down there, but none of that was damaged.” He adds wryly, “We did keep seeing our green chairs at other protests.” The cast and crew still wanted to mount the show in some format, even considering a sit-down version of the play that would be more of a reading than a play. But it wouldn’t be the whole play, and it wouldn’t be in the streets. Ultimately, though, they decided to wait for a more opportune time to reassemble the production, and do it properly. Now things have quieted, and Blow, Winds will sweep the steps of the St. Louis Public Library (1301 Olive Street; www.sfstl.com) on Friday and Saturday (June 15 and 16). Except that it’s not the production that would have been performed nine months ago. “It’s essentially the same, but it’s


WEEK OF JUNE 14-20 a wiser, stronger version,” Martin explains. “The version we had wasn’t set for the post-Stockley era. The original version was sunnier; this is more astringent.” It’s hard to imagine a “sunnier” version of a play inspired by the madness, abandonment, death and destruction of King Lear, but Martin is speaking about the effect of witnessing the ugliest truths about life in St. Louis being played out in the ruins of a production that failed to acknowledge those truths. “The last time it ended on a vision, with the Fool giving a long monologue about the better things to come,” Martin clarifies. “This time it ends with a challenge. One of the things that we glommed onto was boundaries. St. Louis has boundaries. There’s redlining, there’s age, there are the sociological boundaries. The map plays a pretty large role in it this time.” Blow, Winds is about King Louis, ruler of St. Louis, and his decision to abdicate his power to his two venal daughters. Soon St. Louis is in even worse shape, and war breaks out in the streets, performed by the step company Gentleman of Vision. Stepping uses percussive footwork and stylized movement to create an art form that is uniquely African American, and Martin is unstinting in his praise for what the company brings to the show. “Gentlemen of Vision is force of nature when they start,” he says. “Just razor sharp. It’s a stylized combat, step combat.” One of the other changes to the play is more meaningful in the broader world. The cast, Martin says, now blends into the neighborhood around the library better than it did last fall. They’ve taken into account the people who live on the streets, and the cast has been serving meals at the St. Patrick Center, working to get to know its clients. “The play is very much about homelessness,” Martin says. “Some have come down and talked to us about the show; they like that that element is being addressed.” Martin is thankful for that, and he’s also thankful it’s almost time to present Blow, Winds to St. Lou-

is, at long last. “I’ve been carrying around this haunting memory. I’m very grateful to get do it.” Blow, Winds is performed at 8:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday (June 15 and 16) in front of the St. Louis Public Library (1301 Olive Street; www.sfstl.com). Admission is free.

SATURDAY 06/16 Hot Dog Eating Contest

It’s eat or be eaten at Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog eating contest. | JON GITCHOFF

St. Louisans eat a lot of hot dogs, which you can tell just by looking to the variety of wieners available in any grocery store in town. Just how much the people enjoy them is evident when you consider that the competitor slots at the 2018 Nathan’s Famous hot dog eating contest qualifier today at Busch Stadium (700 Clark Street; www. ma j o r l e a g e e a t in g . c o m) were filled to capacity more than a week before the competition. Watch (perhaps through your fingers) beginning at 5:45 p.m. as the hopefuls eat as many hot dogs and buns as possible in ten minutes — the women’s record is 41, so don’t think a 25 is going to win it. (The men’s record is 73.5!) The top dogs in St. Louis will go on to compete in the national contest at Coney Island, New York, on July 4. The Cardinals also play the Cubs at 7:15 p.m. (tickets are $25.90 to $287.90), and Nathan’s Famous is the official hot dog of the Cards, so you could enjoy one or two at a more leisurely pace during the game if you’re so inclined.

Game of Thrones A few years ago Magic Smoking Monkey turned the entire first season of the fan favorite Game of Thrones into a 60-minute comedy performed live on stage, two shows a night. It was absolutely ridiculous and hilarious, and the pace was blinding. Now that the actors have rehydrated and rested up, MSM is going to do it again — only with additional seasons added. Magic Smoking Monkey presents Game of Thrones: Four

The game of thrones requires serious funny business. | COURTESY OF MAGIC SMOKING MONKEY Continued on pg 38

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CALENDAR

FINAL DAYS OF THE SEASON

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Weddings and a Shit-Ton of Funerals, which crumbles up roughly three seasons of the show and regurgitates them on stage with loads of comedy violence, comedy sex and nudity (comic only, no boobies). Write faster, George R.R. Martin, they’re gaining on you! Performances are at 8 and 10:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday (June 15 to 23) at the Regional Arts Commission (6128 Delmar Boulevard; www.brownpapertickets.com). Tickets are $10 to $15.

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JURASSIC WORLD: FALLEN KINGDOM has been rated PG-13 (Parents Strongly Cautioned - Some Material May Be Inappropriate for Children Under 13) for intense sequences of science-fiction violence and peril. Sponsors and their dependents are not eligible to receive a prize. Supplies are limited. Passes received through this promotion do not guarantee a seat at the theater. Seating is on a first-come, first-served basis, except for members of the reviewing press. Theater is overbooked to ensure a full house. No admittance once screening has begun. All federal, state and local regulations apply. A recipient of prizes assumes any and all risks related to use of prize, and accepts any restrictions required by prize provider. Universal Pictures, Allied Integrated Marketing, Riverfront Times and their affiliates accept no responsibility or liability in connection with any loss or accident incurred in connection with use of prizes. Prizes cannot be exchanged, transferred or redeemed for cash, in whole or in part. Not responsible if, for any reason, winner is unable to use his/her prize in whole or in part. Not responsible for lost, delayed or misdirected entries. All federal, state and local taxes are the responsibility of the winner. Void where prohibited by law. NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. NO PHONE CALLS!

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Opera Theatre St. Louis is a proven incubator for young singers, with its Gerdine Young Artist Program providing coaching, master classes and stage experience proving quite successful. Sydney Mancasola, this year’s Violetta in La traviata, and her Alfredo, Geoffrey Agpalo, are both former Gerdine Young Artists. Center Stage is OTSL’s annual end-of-season showcase for emerging talent, pairing singers and members of the St. Louis Symphony with classic arias and even some lesser-known songs from opera’s deep repertoire. Center Stage begins at 8 p.m. tonight at the Loretto-Hilton Center (130 Edgar Road; www.opera-stl.org). Tickets are $25 to $50.

WEDNESDAY 06/20 The Wiz The Muny hasn’t produced The Wiz since 1982, and the country has changed dramatically in that time. Fortunately the show is flexible enough to allow for contemporary references and contextual updates, so it remains fresh. The Muny brought in the great Amber Ruffin (the first black woman to write for late-night TV, for Late Night with Seth Meyers) to add some modern touches to the show, and she knows what’s going on — just watch her episode of Drunk History for proof. But don’t worry: All the classic songs are intact, with “Ease on Down the Road” and “Everybody Rejoice/A Brand New Day” as catchy as ever. The Wiz starts at 8:15 p.m. Tuesday through Monday (June 19 to 25) at the Muny in Forest Park (www.muny.org). Tickets are $15 to $100. n


June 16 ............................. Tommy Halloran’s Guerrilla Swing June 23 .................................................................... Modern Gold June 30 ........................................................................... Trigger 5 July 7 .............................................................. Old Souls Revival July 14 ...............................................................Cara Louise Band

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STAGE In his director’s notes, Bell notes that Hedda is “swirling in a pool of fear, slowly drowning with every breath.”

[REVIEW]

Desperate Housewife Stray Dog — and leading lady Nicole Angeli — present a brilliant Hedda Gabler Written by

PAUL FRISWOLD Hedda Gabler Written by Henrik Ibsen. Adapted by Jon Robin Baitz. Directed by Garry F. Bell. Presented by Stray Dog Theatre through June 23 at the Tower Grove Abbey (2336 Tennessee Avenue; www.straydogtheatre.org). Tickets are $25 to $30.

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enrik Ibsen’s drama Hedda Gabler is more than three hours long, but it never feels like it. Stray Dog Theatre’s astonishing new production of the classic is a marvel of economy, squeezing the decay of a new marriage and the destruction of a bold woman into that short amount of time. It’s a fascinating and enthralling journey from beginning to end, and that’s due in no small part to the outstanding work of director Gary F. Bell’s cast, who are Ibsen veterans all at this point. The five principals all starred in last year’s A Doll’s House, which was also at Stray Dog, but in Hedda Gabler they surpass the lofty heights they collectively achieved then. There are no wasted moments, and no lazy gestures nor creative missteps. This production is profoundly alive in every sense of the word. Nicole Angeli’s Hedda is the daughter of a famous general, and appearances matter to her. She married Jørgen (Ben Ritchie), a historian of the handcrafts of medieval Brabant, because she had no better offers. After a six-month honeymoon tour of Europe, she’s tired of his tedious conversation and lack of imagination. She has no female friends (blame her infamous haughtiness and overt cruelty), and society’s expectation that she be solely a housewife bores her to no end. Jørgen even expressly forbids her to play with

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Hedda (Nicole Angeli) is playing with her pistols again. | JOHN LAMB

her father’s dueling pistols, which leaves her no outlet for her rage. Ritchie has disappeared into Jørgen, a middle-class twit who is oblivious to social cues. He speaks through his twitching nose and covers his frequent chortles with a dainty fist. When he discovers that his old academic rival Ejlert (Stephen Peirick) has gotten control of his alcoholism and published a history of Western civilization that everybody in Christiana is talking about, Jørgen fears his easy track to a university professorship will be obstructed. Hedda, however, briefly brightens, exclaiming that the rivals’ competition for the job will “be

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like a duel!” — and that she can stage-manage her husband into crushing the other man. Yet Ejlert and Jørgen disabuse Hedda of even that little joy, leaving her with only Judge Brack’s visits for pleasure. Brack (John Reidy) is a brilliant conversational foil for Hedda, but the undertow of cruelty in him grows with each visit. “You’ve never been stimulated by anything,” Brack observes, both subtly implying that he could rectify that and making a threat in the process. “I’m glad I’m not in your power,” Hedda tells him late in their verbal games. That will change, however. All of these relationships are

fraught with old rivalries and affairs, which Ibsen reveals through wryly comic dialogue. The cast ably twists the words to show who’s still fighting and who’s forgiven. (Jørgen is an exception, his sole past relationship being with his beloved old house slippers. They are happily reunited.) Thea (Rachel Hanks), Ejlert’s authorial collaborator and typist, is the only one who refuses to duel this way. She says what she thinks and pulls no punches. “You tried to set my hair on fire in school,” she accuses Hedda shortly after arriving. “Nonsense, we were very close,” Hedda counters. All these quiet battles come to a head on the night of Jørgen’s belated stag party, and the whirlwind final act sees all the plots and schemes undone. Hedda, all her cruel fantasies destroyed by the fact that she can’t really manipulate anyone outside her own house, bundles up her remaining bitterness and self-loathing, writing the end with a final exclamation point. In his director’s notes, Bell notes that Hedda is “swirling in a pool of fear, slowly drowning with every breath,” and that’s how Angeli portrays her. Swathed in rich fabric from foot to neck (courtesy of costumer Amy Hopkins), she snipes and belittles everyone drawn into her orbit. Her bright eyes stare toward a horizon she desperately wants and will never reach, moving ever farther away from the people she antagonizes. That distance between her and everyone else is her armor, and it fails her in a singularly feminine way. It’s a fascinating performance, certainly the best of Angeli’s career, and it stays with you long after Hedda Gabler disappears. n


FILM

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[REVIEW]

Unusual Suspects Bart Layton’s new film is a book heist told twice, to diminishing returns Written by

ROBERT HUNT American Animals Written and directed by Bart Layton. Starring Evan Peters, Blake Jenner, Barry Keoghan and Jared Abrahamson. Opens Friday, June 15, at the Landmark Tivoli Theatre.

A

merican Animals begins with a chest-thumping set of title cards: “This is not based on a true story; this is a true story.” You could argue that it’s just a matter of semantics, but that’s not the point. The statement itself is irrelevant. It’s just a way of marking territory, of adding a dash of self-conscious bravado to a familiar genre, the way a trendy diner might try to make a name for itself by declaring that its product is “not your father’s” [insert extremely common menu item here]. The first dramatic film from British documentarian Bart Layton, American Animals reenact a 2004 incident in which four young men in Lexington, Kentucky, attempted to steal a few valuable books from the rare book room at nearby Transylvania University. Guided mostly by whatever knowledge they could glean from The Usual Suspects and The Killing, they studied the location, made tentative contacts with a prospective buyer in the Netherlands and finalized a scheme that could be summed up as follows: Run in, grab books, run out. Layton doesn’t waste much time in introducing his gimmick, which inserts interviews with the real would-be criminal masterminds into the film to comment on the action and offer contradictory accounts of their plotting. It’s a narrative trick that unfortunately never rises above the level of a flashy stunt, with the additional

Evan Peters plays one of the inept book thieves in American Animals. | COURTESY OF THE ORCHARD disadvantage of deflating any attempts at suspense: If the robbers are to all appearances alive and healthy, we know nothing particularly bad is going to happen to them. Most of American Animals’ staged portions show little more than four kids indulging in an under-developed fantasy, lazy playacting in a pseudo-Tarantinoesque vein. Evan Peters brings a level of intensity to his role — he recalls a younger Michael Shannon — and Irish actor Barry Keoghan repeats his slow-witted American portrayal from The Killing of a Sacred Deer, but the performances are inevitably overshadowed by their real-world doppelgangers, reducing the dramatized portions to a kind of half-hearted game, an episode of Unsolved Mysteries with a patronizing wink at the material. The characters go through the motions and drop the predictable cultural references — choosing the red pill or the blue pill, borrowing names from Reservoir Dogs, with one of the gang pretended to be offended at having to be Mr. Pink — but they fall flat. It doesn’t take long to figure out that the real scheme behind American Animals is less about nabbing a copy of Birds of Amer-

Layton doesn’t waste much time in introducing his gimmick, which inserts interviews with the real would-be criminal masterminds into the film to comment on the action. ica and more a flashy attempt to prevent the viewer from noticing its flimsy foundation. Layton employs familiar tricks like kinetic editing and split-screen effects solely for short-term impact, plus a soundtrack built on collective nostalgia (why are all the songs from the ‘60s and ‘70s, before any of the characters were even born?), but they seem lazy, even obligatory.

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Its knowledge of its crime film ancestors notwithstanding, American Animals is ultimately undone by its real-life gimmick, which proves more show than substance. Layton constantly reminds the viewer of the true-story background — we see one character exchange a note with a darkhaired man, then replay the scene differently when his real counterpart recalls that the man had white hair — but it’s hard to see it as anything more than a kind of narrative parlor trick. Sometimes, Layton simply cuts in shots of the actual thieves as silent, self-conscious reaction shots. We see Keoghan driving past his real-life counterpart, as if the 2018 version is silently consenting to the actions of his 2004 alter ego. Are we supposed to share the distanced perspective of the 2018 man, or acknowledge that the 2004 version is merely a charade? Layton’s not interested in the implications of his meta-fictional game; he’s just showing off. Rather than inviting the members of the real “Transy Heist” gang to share their perspectives, they’re simply put on display, never controlling their story but merely consenting to their cinematic use. n

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Simba’s many intriguing offerings include, clockwise from top left, bean curry, mandazi, the “Rolex” (a fried roulade of bread vegetables and egg), sumbusas and whole tilapia. | MABEL SUEN

[REVIEW]

Out of Africa At Simba, Christine Mukulu Sseremba has conquered heartache to prepare the food of Uganda with tremendous skill Written by

CHERYL BAEHR Simba Ugandan Restaurant 8531 Olive Boulevard, University City; 314484-2530; Tues.-Sun. 11 a.m.-9 p.m. (Closed Mondays.)

C

hristine Mukulu Sseremba didn’t know if she had it in her. Opening a restaurant wasn’t daunting only for the usual concerns — long hours, grueling work, physical strain. She had other reasons, ones that almost kept her from opening Olive Green International Cuisine,

rebranded in February as Simba Ugandan Restaurant. Her distress stemmed from the loss of what she thought was her life’s work, a situation fraught with politics and corruption that had led her from Uganda to the United States as an asylum-seeker in 2011. In her native Kampala, Sseremba knew what she was meant to do. An actress, entrepreneur and MBA graduate, she was troubled by her fellow Ugandans’ lack of access to information technology. Though the government issued lofty targets for computer literacy, schools were not equipped with computers, and access to the internet was a privilege for the elites. Though she did not have an IT background, Sseremba started a program to bring in refurbished computers from other countries, providing training and a physical space to use the technology. The problem was her location, a plot of land in a choice part of town that the Ugandan president’s brother wanted for his own. She says he illegally seized her land and, when he realized she would

fight back in court, demolished her headquarters. Sseremba didn’t even know it was happening until she got a call explaining that her nemesis had come in the middle of the night, surrounded the property with sheet metal and proceeded to destroy it. Everything she’d worked for was in the building, all of it reduced to rubble. Devastated and fearing for her safety, Sseremba sought refuge in the U.S., where she was finally granted asylum four years later, in 2015. Her heart was broken, not just from watching her life’s work be destroyed, but from her belief that she had somehow failed those who needed her. In her darkest hours, she thought she could literally die from a broken heart. Then she started cooking. Though Sseremba had always been a passionate home cook, she’d never really thought of it as a career, especially after a few bad experiences in the restaurant business back home soured her on the industry. However, she loved cooking and found herself bringing a virtual

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Ugandan feast to her new St. Louis church one Sunday after noticing that the parish priest had nothing to eat but cold leftovers. He was impressed, as were the parishioners, and news of her cooking prowess began to spread. Sseremba began cooking at events around town, such as the Festival of Nations and the African Arts Festival, where, to her surprise, her food was a tremendous hit. Patrons asking where they could find her food were shocked that she didn’t have a restaurant of her own. The demand prompted her to open her Olive Green International Cuisine in University City’s Jeffrey Plaza in 2015. Though Olive Green was fairly successful, Sseremba didn’t feel like it was the right concept. Prior to opening, she had participated in a business-mentorship program where her adviser discouraged her from calling her restaurant African, let alone Ugandan. The “International” moniker, however, was a source of confusion for guests. It also failed to capture the spirit of

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ALL KILLER. NO FILLER. HAND-CRAFTED SMOKED MEATS AND BREWS

Chef Christine Mukulu Sseremba (second from right) with her sons, George Knudsen and Majesty Mukulu, and sister, Annet Sseremba. | MABEL SUEN

SIMBA UGANDAN Continued from pg 45

Photography by JENNIFER SILVERBERG

Photography by JENNIFER SILVERBERG

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Ugandan cuisine, something that was important to Sseremba. This February, together with her sons George and Majesty, Sseremba relocated from Jeffrey Plaza to a stand-alone building across Woodson Road and changed the restaurant’s name to Simba Ugandan Restaurant. The three have transformed the space, previously home to Taqueria La Monarca, into a bright, festive restaurant with yellow, red and green walls, red curtains, Ugandan artwork and contemporary African pop music videos on TV. The pulsing music is transportive, as are the powerful flavors that come out of Sseremba’s kitchen. Sumbusas, akin to samosas in other parts of the globe, are golden, triangular pillows, filled with potatoes, lentils and carrots and perfumed with earthy spices that call to mind yellow curry. The dough is perfectly fried, maintaining a thin, crisp exterior that yields to delicate dough akin to a funnel cake before the vegetable middle. They are extraordinary. Chapati, a thin fry bread that is like a cross between naan and a tortilla, works both on its own and as a delectable way of soaking up Simba’s various curries. The bread is also the main component of the “Rolex,” a fried roulade of bread, vegetables and egg. The texture is tougher than the plain chapati, and though there are additional flavors, it is also less seasoned. According to Sseremba’s sons, this is a ubiquitous Ugandan street food. Regardless, I preferred the plain chapati. Pan-fried beef is intensely seasoned, with a spice blend some-

where between red curry and a black-peppery Memphis barbecue rub. The cut Sseremba uses is a bit tough and gristly in some parts, but she cuts it into pieces and cooks it slow enough to soften the texture. Slivers of white onion and green peppers soften in the meat’s juices, forming a thick pan sauce. Every bite reveals an additional flavor — cumin, thyme, garlic — made more potent when paired with a side of pilau, a Ugandan fried rice. This is not just ordinary fried rice, however. Sseremba first blooms a virtual spice rack of seasonings, adds vegetables to it and then mixes in uncooked rice so that flavor infuses as it cooks. Paired with the beef, it’s otherworldly. Curried goat, one of Simba’s most popular dishes, also benefits from Sseremba’s ability to layer flavors. The goat is slow-cooked in a thyme- and rosemary-forward sauce, which both softens the meat and eliminates any gaminess. As it cooks down, the sauce thickens, forming a rich, herbinfused gravy. If this is your first experience with goat, it will not be your last. It is not, however, Simba’s most unique dish. That honor goes to a platter of bananas covered in groundnut sauce. A legume in the peanut family, the groundnut here is crushed and stewed, forming a thick sauce that tastes like the vegetal liquid leftover from cooking beans. If that sounds unpleasant, it isn’t. The sauce complements the bananas, which present as savory after being slow-cooked with tomatoes and onions. Western palates may have a hard time wrapping themselves around the unfamiliar flavors. However, it’s an experience I enjoyed exploring. Continued on pg 48






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With a blend of ginger, garlic, herbs and spices cooked with tomatoes, onions and potatoes, the goat curry is intoxicating. | MABEL SUEN

SIMBA UGANDAN Continued from pg 46

Simba’s smoked meats are good enough to compete with the big players in the city’s crowded barbecue scene. Roasted pork ribs are coated in a powerful spice rub

and smoked until the meat develops a wonderful crackling skin. A roasted quarter-chicken is simply outstanding, its succulent meat kissed with herbs, pepper and smoke. It’s a simple pleasure, but among the best roasted chickens I’ve ever eaten. I’d wait from here to eternity

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for that chicken. And I almost had to. A meal at Simba is not quick. In fact, the leisurely pace can be vexing, and it appears to be systemic. On a dinner visit, food came out slowly and piecemeal — an entrée here, an appetizer there — and the guests across from us waited about 30 minutes for their appe-

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tizers. Lunch was no different. Though the restaurant opens at 11 a.m., the doors weren’t even unlocked until 11:20, and there was no food on the buffet until almost noon. But, hey, it was better than when a friend of mine dined at Olive Green two years ago and the buffet wasn’t ready for an hour and a half. Baby steps? Other restaurants wouldn’t get away with such pacing, but there’s something about Simba that makes time seem irrelevant. I can’t decide if it’s the way the restaurant’s vibrant decor and upbeat soundtrack make you feel like you are in an East African bar, that, absent a liquor license, you can bring in your own six pack and throw back beer to your heart’s content or that once the food arrives, it’s searing hot and utterly delicious. It’s probably a combination of the three. But more so, you root for Simba because you root for Sseremba. After all, if it took her four years to mend a broken heart and put herself out there again, I can wait twenty minutes for a sumbusa — even if they’re so good that doing so feels like torture.

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SHORT ORDERS

[SIDE DISH]

Indie Eatery’s Chef Took the Long Way Written by

CHERYL BAEHR

S

hannon Thompson didn’t realize it at the time, but her childhood was much different than the other kids in her neighborhood, at least in terms of what she was eating. “I grew up in a household where we ate really healthy — we didn’t buy sugared cereals, we ate zucchini and squash and fresh spaghetti sauce,” Thompson recalls. “We lived in Walnut Park near Jennings, not the best neighborhood, yet we ate organic. Here we were eating duck with homemade noodles. It didn’t dawn on me how good I had it as a kid until I got into this lifestyle as an adult.” That lifestyle, one dedicated to healthful living and sustainability, is what’s led Thompson to launch her catering business, .iNDIE4 Catering (www.eatsbyindie.com), and her soon-to-open restaurant, Indie Eatery. The enterprises have been a long time coming for Thompson, who has dreamed for several years of having her own food business and has been working off and on to make that happen, in some capacity, since 2009. That year was life-changing for Thompson. At the time, she was enlisted in the Air Force and stationed in the Middle East, where her lack of regular access to goods such as toothpaste and deodorant prompted her to begin making her own. As she traveled around the region, she also noticed the lack of processed foods and the availability of fresh juices and began thinking more and more about what she was putting into her body. After research and reflection, she decided to live as naturally as possible. Around that time, Thompson also began cooking for herself and her husband. She realized

Shannon Thompson has gone from the military to Monsanto to medical cannabis. She’s finally ready to open a restaurant of her own. | MONICA MILEUR she had both a passion and a talent for it, and when she and her husband came back to the United States, they thought they would open a restaurant. In preparation for that, they went back to the Middle East for three more years, dividing their time between working in the Air Force and traveling around the area to learn as much as they could about food. Thompson and her husband felt like they were ready to realize their restaurant dreams when they got back to the U.S., but then the Great Recession hit and, unable to find work, they used up their savings just to support themselves. Though it seemed antithetical to her life’s philosophy, Thompson had to pay the bills. She got a job working at Monsanto. Unhappy with her job, Thompson began poking around on the internet and found information on a company called BeLeaf, which had just been granted a license to begin providing medical cannabis to epilepsy patients. She

reached out to the company to ask if she could teach yoga to the patients, but ended up being offered a position as a community educator and patient advocate. “I had to make a living, but Monsanto was pulling on me,” Thompson says. “So I left to follow my passion. It was a drop in salary and benefits, but I felt like it was the right thing to do.” Thompson worked for BeLeaf for a year before their funding decreased and they had to let her go. Again, she found herself in a position where she couldn’t find a fulltime job to support her family, but this time, she decided to take matters into her own hands. Armed with a small menu and a handful of tried-and-true recipes, she approached a local apartment building about catering their grand opening. To her surprise, they let her do it. At the grand opening, she made connections that would lead to additional catering work. Before she knew it, she was booking jobs for such influential events as a Dem-

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ocratic Party fundraiser, the St. Charles County prosecuting attorney and Arch Grants. She had no Facebook page, and no website, yet the business came rolling in. She knew right then that she was on the right path. “Before, we were trying to force stuff and it wasn’t working,” Thompson says. “This time, I was just asking the universe to put it in front of me, and it wasn’t a fight. We’re getting sign after sign that we are moving in the right direction.” About a month ago, Thompson took over a small commercial kitchen off Mexico Road in St. Peters that will serve as a home to her catering business and a storefront for a forthcoming restaurant, Indie Eatery. There, she will serve dishes based on recipes that she has been tweaking over the years — buttermilk pancakes, French toast with caramelized bourbon cream sauce, and a Liege-style waffle. She hopes to open later this month, though she

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SHANNON THOMPSON Continued from pg 49

can barely contain her excitement in the meantime. “It’s been a labor of love. For so long we’ve been thinking and refining and are finally putting our vision to work,” Thompson says. “I’ve put so much love into it that it’s bursting out — I could pop!” Thompson took a break from the kitchen to share her thoughts on the St. Louis restaurant scene, why she’d like to see more interesting restaurants in the suburbs, and why it’s OK for life to give you lemons. What is one thing people don’t know about you that you wish they did? This is a nice tricky question — I’m actually really happy about being inconspicuous and low-key. People may not know that I’m a true introvert. My private life is everything to me. It’s hard work trying to put myself out there. What daily ritual is non-negotiable for you? Meditating and strength training. I can’t go a day without either. They keep me focused and provide me the best opportunity to really organize the things going

on in my brain and think things through a bit better. If you could have any superpower, what would it be? Michonne, from The Walking Dead, is the epitome of a superpower – right? LOL! No, seriously, time travel would be a spectacular superpower to have! What is the most positive thing in food, wine or cocktails that you’ve noticed in St. Louis over the past year? I think the food scene in St. Louis is bending the corner on creativity. People are really taking bold chances with their menus. I see a lot of plates being orchestrated by the heart. There are a lot of thoughtful dishes popping up in a number of spaces. What is something missing in the local food, wine or cocktail scene that you’d like to see? I don’t think there is too much missing in any of those scenes. I think that the spaces and options are just concentrated mainly in the city of St. Louis. I’d like to see more of that creativity make its way to the ’burbs. Who is your St. Louis food crush? I will always and forever crush on Juniper! The ambiance of the space, the simplicity of the menu, unique combinations of small plates with the perfect balance

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When Thompson was stationed in the Middle East, her lack of access to goods like toothpaste and deodorant prompted her to make her own. and intensity of the ingredients. Who’s the one person to watch right now in the St. Louis dining scene? I’d say David Kirkland, the owner and chef of Turn. I love the vibe, and the dishes feel super authentic. It’s like he’s not afraid to take the chance to put what’s in his head on a plate — a fabulouslooking plate! Which ingredient is most representative of your personality? That’s easy — lemon, the zest and the juice. It’s versatile, and it’s amazing in both savory and sweet

dishes. It can take any recipe to the next level, but it’s just a simple lemon. You can’t help but respect the purity of it. If you weren’t working in the restaurant business, what would you be doing? Teaching nutrition education to kids and adults in underserved communities (what I do now) and yoga. Name an ingredient never allowed in your restaurant. Seafood/shellfish — only because I’m allergic. What is your after-work hangout? I don’t know if my friends would appreciate me spilling the beans. I think I’m supposed to keep that a secret! My favorite spot is Louie’s Wine Dive in Clayton. What’s your food or beverage guilty pleasure? An organic iced matcha green tea, daily, for sure. On the food tip, it’s cacio e pepe. What would be your last meal on earth? Without hesitation, it would be my favorite from Kemoll’s! Pollo All’agro Dolce (which is no longer on the menu), house salad with no capers or garbanzo beans, cheese bread and the penne pasta in a creamy basil sun-dried-tomato alfredo sauce. n

dining read more at

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Earthbound Satellite may be a cocktail bar, but Earthbound Beer is on tap, of course. | CHERYL BAEHR

[BARS]

It’s Back to Futurism in Soulard Written by

CHERYL BAEHR

S

tuart Keating, co-owner of Earthbound Beer, likes to joke that he and his partners Rebecca Schranz and Jeff Siddons have been in a constant state of building something ever since they opened their original Cherokee Street taproom in late 2014. He isn’t just talking about the massive renovation on their brand-new brewery, either, which (finally) opened this past September. The paint wasn’t even dry on that project when he and the Earthbound team were tapped to take over the bar operations inside Soulard Preservation Hall this past March. That concept, Earthbound Satellite (1921 South 9th Street), opened May 31. “This is something different for us in the sense that we are used to creating something from nothing,” Keating laughs. “This is the first time we have gone into an already

existing place and [screwed] it all up.” Keating’s joke came as he and Earthbound Satellite’s head bartender, Ryan Pier, are scrambling to put the finishing touches on the operation. The small bar sits inside the retooled hall, which is owned by Moonbase Market, a video and tabletop game forum and events space. While Moonbase Market will continue to run the larger venue that hosts special events and its gaming clientele, Earthbound Satellite has taken over the room that houses the building’s bar. That space can hold around 35 patrons and consists of lofted ceilings, artwork by Earthbound co-owner Robin Johnson and an old wooden bar that has been outfitted with sci-fi influenced decor. Behind the bar, gold mylar lines the wall and gives the feeling of a campy futuristic movie set. Described as a “dive bar in space,” Earthbound Satellite is the brainchild of Pier, who has always wanted to do a cocktail program in the context of Earthbound, though the brewery’s focus on beer never really afforded him the opportunity to do so. For a small bar set inside a larger events space, Earthbound Satellite has high-concept ambitions. As Pier explains, he drew his inspiration from the Italian arts movement Futurism, which upended Italy’s cocktail culture in the early 1900s. Relying heavily on amaro

The “Carthusian Coffee” complements a massive assortment of space-based games. | CHERYL BAEHR and vermouth, the movement was a rejection of classical cocktails in favor of the avant garde. “Earthbound is always open to new ideas, and Stuart and I have a love affair with European liquors,” explains Pier. “We agreed that we wanted this to be an educational bar with weird liquors and things to taste that people wouldn’t normally taste in Soulard.” An example of the sort of cocktails to expect at Earthbound Satellite is the “Carthusian Coffee,” a drink inspired by the Carthusian monks who make Chartreuse. The complex yet balanced flavors come from cafe amaro, whiskey, chartreuse, fernet, mint and lemon. However, in keeping with the spirit of Futurism, it might not be the same every time you taste it. “Bartenders would write down their recipes but erase the ratios so that each drink was an expression of the individual,” Pier explains. “I am thinking about doing that here.” Earthbound Satellite may have a cerebral element to it, but Keating, Pier and company are not taking themselves too seriously. Ideas abound, including the possibility of using an old Snoopy Sno-Cone machine to shave ice for drinks. Though that has not happened yet, they have acquired an old Jagermeister machine that they’ve already repurposed. It will be used to serve their clear Manhattans. Pier hopes that the small, 35-

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At Earthbound Satellite, creatures from another planet decorate the bar. | CHERYL BAEHR seat bar with be a place for conversation and engagement between patrons. To that end, the bar has several games available to play while sipping on drinks. And because Earthbound Satellite sits just off the Moonbase Market side of the building, he expects crossover between the concepts. “We’re hoping for a chill, relaxed atmosphere,” Pier explains. “Because it is smaller, the focus will be on having a conversation and not large quantities of people coming in.” See the bar’s Facebook page, www.facebook.com/earthboundsatellite, for up-to-date information on hours. n

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Who says a veggie burger has to be healthy? | PAIGE BRUBECK

[FOOD NEWS]

They’ve Got Late-Nite and Lunch Cornered Written by

CAMILLE RESPESS

H

usband-and-wife duo Cornell and Jamila Boone want to give customers options at their brand-new fast-casual restaurant, the Corner Street Food (2605 Washington Avenue). The menu is comprised of buildyour-own burgers, with four protein options: beef, chicken, turkey and veggie. The restaurant also offers chicken wings, jumbo shrimp, salads and stuffed burgers. Unlike a typical burger joint, featuring menu items numbered with pre-selected toppings, the Boones allow patrons to build their burgers from start to finish. “We decided to do a build-yourown type of menu with the burg-

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ers because it will be more innovative, and people want to pick exactly what’s on their burger instead of ordering a No. 1,” Jamila Boone says. She believes the Corner Street Food’s sides, however, will be a major draw. Some of her favorites are the funnel-cake fries, macaroni-and-cheese balls and street corn. St. Louis natives who each boast more than a decade of business experience, Cornell and Jamila Boone chose the location at the corner of Washington and Jefferson for their first restaurant because it’s between Midtown and Downtown and has the opportunity to cater to nightlife. Previously home to Crave Street Food, it’s been vacant since September. The counter-service restaurant has carried over the smart look of its predecessor, including one wall covered with the scene of a bustling city street at night. The Corner Street Food hopes to cater to lunch and late-night crowds. Hours are 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, while on Fridays and Saturdays, the restaurant’s hours are 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., reopening at 10 p.m. and staying open until 3:30 a.m. The restaurant opened May 26 and will have its grand opening June 15. n


At Copia, wine isn’t just something to drink. It’s part of the decor. | SPENCER PERNIKOFF

[FIRST LOOK]

COPIA OPENS PART 2 IN CLAYTON Written by

ELLEN PRINZI

A

fter fourteen years downtown, Copia (7822 Bonhomme Avenue, Clayton; 314-241-9463) has expanded westward, opening its second location in the old Morton’s location in Clayton. The downtown flagship, which offers a high-end dining option for Wash Ave. residents, has long been known for its huge, stylish patio. That concept has easily translated to Clayton, with a front patio beckoning the happy-hour crowd. And it’s not just the patio that owner Amer Hawatmeh hopes will draw in Clayton diners. Copia famously offers an expansive and affordable wine list, a welcome addition to the higher price points in the neighborhood. “As we get our feet wet, our intention is to do latenight happy hours and live music on the weekend,” Hawatmeh says. “It’s a big deal and hopefully a game-changer for the Clayton nightlife scene.” The inspiration for the Clayton location was to create a new, more updated space than the original restaurant. “The whole idea is a more modern and tasteful setting,” Hawatmeh says. “To bring it up to speed, update and move forward.” This aesthetic is still largely modern steakhouse, but with a bolder color palette of red and stacked-stone details. The much-lauded wine list does not disappoint. Interested in New Zealand sauvignon blanc? The list has more than

ten (!) options for your drinking pleasure. From Italian barolos to Oregon pinots, you will find varietals from all over the world and price points to match anyone’s budget. Every bottle is also available retail; it’s 20 percent less than the listed price if you’re taking it to go. It’s not just wine lovers who should be excited about Copia’s westward expansion; the cocktail menu features the barrel-aged drinks and more than 40 bourbons and 35 scotches, with an impressive array of both. Another carryover from the flagship location are monthly VIP tastings, including scotch, bourbon and wine. “We love providing our regulars with the opportunity to experience all the different bottles and the education,” Hawatmeh says. The best part? They’re free. Copia is the Roman goddess of plenty, which explains the varied menu offerings including seafood, steak, Southern classics and BBQ. “We give everyone something they want, with many options of yes,” Hawatmeh says. The doors opened quietly the first week of May, and Copia has since been stocking up its famous wine list and hosting a variety of live music events, plus a Kentucky Derby party. Later this year, a third Copia will open its doors in the old Elephant bar location at West County Mall, but the plans don’t stop there. Hawatmeh has a larger expansion planned for Copia, with locations in Kentucky, Tennessee and Iowa all in the works. Copia’s Clayton location is open Monday through Thursday 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., Friday 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., Saturday 3:30 to 11 p.m. and Sunday 3 to 9 p.m. Ellen Prinzi is our bar-and-nightlife writer; she likes strong drinks and has strong opinions. You can catch more of her writing via Olio City, a city-guide app she started last year.

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restaurants • shopping • arts • music

History of the Area

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Blueberry Hill BlueberryHill.com • 6504 Delmar in The Loop

6504 Delmar in The Loop ★ 314-727-4444 BlueberryHill.com

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Next came the Delmar Loop Planet Walk, a 2,880-ft scale model of the solar system. In 2011 The Loop unveiled the iconic Chuck Berry Statue, an eight-foot bronze statue dedicated to the Father of Rock & Roll along with the Centennial Greenway bicycle and pedestrian trail. In the 2010s, with the opening of the colorful Peacock Diner in 2014, The Loop became a true 24/7 neighborhood. And in 2016, the 800-capacity Delmar Hall music venue opened next to The Pageant. Many consider The Loop to be the live music center of St. Louis with its 8 stages showcasing music of all genres. The most exciting new attraction of 2018 will be the fixed-track vintage trolley. It will connect the #1 city park in America (Forest Park) to “One of the 10 Great Streets in America,” the Delmar Loop. Yesss! ★

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Pin-Up Bowl Fantastic kids birthday packages PinUpBowl.com • 6191 Delmar in The Loop

2010s

IN T

2000s

1980s

! LIVEHE

In the 1990s the Delmar Loop MetroLink station opened, allowing visitors to ride right to The Loop. The elegant 1924 Tivoli Movie Theatre was beautifully restored in 1995 and, along with many new gift shops and clothing boutiques, signaled that The Loop had arrived. Fitz’s opened its vintage 1930s root beer & soda bottling line. Opening in 2000 was The Pageant, a 2,000+ capacity concert nightclub that has featured artists such as Bob Dylan, Imagine Dragons, Jason Derulo, Mumford & Sons, Dolly Parton and Pharrell. Also in the 2000s, Pin-Up Bowl bowling and martini lounge debuted, followed by the boutique Moonrise Hotel which features the world’s largest man-made moon rotating above the indoor/outdoor Rooftop Bar.

1990s

1970s

During the last 45 years, the Delmar Loop has evolved into one of the most vibrant and entertaining areas in the United States. The revitalization of The Loop began in the early 1970s with legislation that limited occupancy of first floor storefronts to retail shops, galleries and restaurants to attract more pedestrians. Nationally renowned restaurant and music club Blueberry Hill was the first of a new era of unique owner-operated businesses. In the 1980s dusk-to-dawn lights, trash receptacles, and flower planters were added to make The Loop brighter, cleaner, and more colorful. The non-profit St. Louis Walk of Fame was founded and became a unifying attraction for the area. Now more than 150 stars and informative plaques are embedded in the sidewalks.


CULTURE

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[PREVIEW]

Guided by Voices Simply Can’t Stop Written by

JEREMY ESSIG

M

ore than 30 years since its formation in Dayton, Ohio, Guided by Voices is still equal parts proliferance and debauchery. Closing out RFT’s ShowcaseSTL on June 17 in support of its most recent album Space Gun — its fourth in two years — the band has always been known as much for the volume of its lo-fi, psychedelic-tinged output as for its two- to three-hour marathon live shows, which can often resemble an indie-rock version of a keg party — kind of like the Flaming Lips, but for the “last call” set. And while much of the credit for both elements of the band’s persona has been attributed (appropriately) to singer Robert Pollard — onstage the beer-chugging frontman, and offstage a songwriting machine with more than 100 albums to his credit — guitarist Doug Gillard isn’t one to sit idly by either. “There’s a lot going on right now,” Gillard says. “You’re asked to do something, and you do it.” Gillard came to Pollard’s attention while playing in the Cleveland-based bands Death of Samantha and Cobra Verde. The singer would tap Cobra Verde to join as his backing band for Guided by Voices’ 1997 album Mag Earwhig!, and Gillard would stay with the band until its first disbandment in 2005. After reforming in 2010 with a new lineup, Pollard once again reached out to Gillard in 2016 to play a festival date in Cincinnati. He has remained a member since — a job that would keep most musicians more than busy enough. But not Gillard. The guitarist was introduced as a member of Nada Surf in 2010 and most recently has contributed parts to albums from artists ranging from Neko Case to his

“Prolific” is an understatement for a band with more than 25 LPs under its belt since its start in 1983. | VIA TELL ALL YOUR FRIENDS PR nephew’s Columbus-based band Bummers. All this is in addition to his role working alongside the never-ending spout of creativity that is Pollard. “We’ve finished a double album, Zeppelin Over China, that should be coming out sometime in the next year or so,” Gillard says, adding that the band has also begun recording two six-song EPs that should be “coming out later in the year.” Choosing setlists from such a vast catalog might seem like a Herculean task for some, but Gillard says the band has worked out a process where they start with “a basic list of 60 songs that gradually change” to feature tracks from the new album. Once another record has been released the band then subs out songs from the previous album, allowing, according to Gillard, for “a little holdover.” While 60 may be pushing the number of songs one might see at any given Guided by Voices show, the sheer length of their sets allows for it as a possibility. Gillard

says the group’s members keep up their stamina from night to night by working from a “two shows and take a night off” philosophy that Gillard says Pollard prefers. The band’s live sets are also distinct from some of its ’80s and ’90s indie rock peers in the sense that Guided by Voices still seems to maintain a relatively young fan base, even as the band is now in its third decade. “People are attracted to the lore, the mythology,” Gillard says of the band’s ability to continually gain new fans. “But it’s not just the band’s story; the songs are also really great. There’s a lot to read into it. There’s a lot to delve into when you have so many various characters and song titles.” And yet, Gillard says he doesn’t worry about living up to the band’s live reputation. “There’s not really pressure to live up to any of that,” he says, “just the pressure to keep playing well and always give it your best effort.” Speaking of his role specifically, he adds, “I start and stop every song. There’s not a lot of time

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to grab that bottle.” Gillard and the band have a bit of a connection the city for which they are closing out a local music showcase. Scat Records, a label that started in Cleveland and eventually moved to St. Louis, released a number of early Guided by Voices albums, as well as five albums by Cobra Verde. Gillard also remembers a show at Mississippi Nights in the early 2000s where Beatle Bob was taped dancing beforehand to be used later in a Guided by Voices video. Gillard mentions the band’s fondness for having a nice Italian meal before shows — something the guitarist notes that St. Louis “definitely has.” He also makes mention of Rise, the Grove-area coffeehouse he visited during Guided by Voices’ appearance at the Ready Room last year. And that makes sense. With twohour shows, a double album and two EPs in the pipeline, and Pollard writing songs seemingly as fast as he can breathe, good coffee seems almost a requirement. n

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Bee Bop, by Ben Lowder. When the piece sold, says Lowder, he donated a portion of proceeds to restoring Miles Davis’ East St. Louis home. | COURTESY OF CHEROKEE STREET GALLERY

[ART]

Street Art Gallery Comes to Cherokee Written by

IAN SCOTT

C

herokee Street will be welcoming a new art gallery — the aptly named Cherokee Street Gallery (2617 Cherokee Street), which will be opening its doors to the public in the coming weeks. The gallery is run by artist Benjamin Lowder and gallerist Lisa Simani. Lowder says that his intention with the space is “celebrating the founding fathers of graffiti art” and to “explore the intersection of nature and iconography.” Lowder and Simani, both fans of Barthes and semiotics, utilize natural images throughout the gallery “to convey man’s relationship to nature through these agreed-

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upon symbols,” Lowder says. “We want these things to stand alone as beautiful, visual objects, but there are layers and depth behind it, that inspire people to ask questions.” Developer Jason Deem owns the building, which was previously home to a vintage clothing shop. He’d bought Lowder’s work to display at his nearby co-working space, Nebula. The two remained in touch, and from that, the Cherokee Street Gallery was born. “The vibrance and emerging culture that is building on Cherokee Street is inspiring, and I wanted to be a part of it,” Lowder says. Much of the art that the gallery is expected to showcase is set within the ethos of the NYC graffiti movement of the 1970s. Even the sign on the front of the building, which evokes an old-school subway sign, is a relic from that time. In the ’80s, galleries began to showcase street art, a trend that’s gathered significant momentum in the past few years. A piece by the American artist Jean-Michel Basquiat recently sold for $110 million. Lowder comes from a small town in Southern Illinois and put in years of work to get to this position today. “I spent fifteen years as a commercial artist, creating advertisements,” Lowder says. “Coming from a rural environ-

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ment in Illinois, I didn’t have any examples of people who made it into the art world.” Eventually, he was ready to let go of working for clients and begin making art on his own. After bouncing around from Los Angeles to New York City, with his work being showcased in both cities and many places in

Where it’s at. | COURTESY OF CHEROKEE STREET GALLERY

between, Lowder felt it was time to return to his roots in St. Louis. “It’s good to build here, not to run to the coasts for all of your opportunities,” he says. Self-sustainability is another idea found within the works here. Lowder, who built his own home out of reusable materials, also used the extra lumber in his artwork. Lowder’s own art is meticulously obsessive. “I’m a big believer in sacred geometry, which is the concept that everything from the subatomic to the galactic share a very limited set of geometric proportions,” Lowder says. In addition to Lowder’s work, the gallery will feature art from Lauren Marx and Travis Lawrence, both St. Louis-based artists. Patti Astor, who curated shows featuring Keith Haring, Kenny Scharf and Basquiat himself at her New York City-based Fun Gallery, will serve as a curatorial advisor. Cherokee Street Gallery will open its first show on June 29 at 6 p.m., featuring works from Lowder’s “Myth, Math & Magic” series of “remixed cultural artifacts.” Admission is free. See www.cherokeestreetgallery.com for more details. Going forward, the gallery plans to be open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Thursday through Saturday. n


57

OUT EVERY NIGHT

It’s Always a Party!

[CRITIC’S PICK]

The Blasters. | VIA ATOMIC MUSIC GROUP

The Blasters

most instantly identifiable singers to ever

8 p.m. Sunday, June 17.

draw a howling breath. A bona fide poly-

The Old Rock House, 1200 South Seventh Street. $15 to $18. 314-588-0505.

math (as in, he has a Ph.D in mathemat-

Maybe you never got to see Creedence or

tonk, rockabilly, blues, R&B — and drives

the Doors, somehow missed out on the

his band like a jailhouse boss. The Blast-

Heartbreakers and were born too late for

ers have never taken prisoners live, so

the Band. Save your regrets, as a handful

get in line for their rock & roll chain gang.

of truly great American bands remain and

You won’t regret it.

still take to the road every year. (Beyond

Clowning Around: American music was

that, one of the aforementioned was

built on fun, so why the hell not get to

mostly Canadian.) At the top of any list of

this gig early for opener Clownvis Pres-

said rock & roll survivors is the Blasters,

ley? He’s weird. But so is rock & roll.

led by founder Phil Alvin, only one of the

THURSDAY 14

THE ANCHOR: w/ Vrsty, Bridges, The Underground Lemon Experience 7 p.m., $10-$13. Fubar, 3108 Locust St, St. Louis, 314-2899050. BENJI BAM & DJ TAB: 9 p.m., $5. 2720 Cherokee Performing Arts Center, 2720 Cherokee St, St. Louis, 314-276-2700. THE FACELESS: w/ By The Thousands, Wrecklamation, The Nokturnal 6 p.m., $16-$20. Fubar, 3108 Locust St, St. Louis, 314-289-9050. IVAS JOHN & BRIAN CURRAN: 7 p.m., $5. BB’s Jazz, Blues & Soups, 700 S. Broadway, St. Louis, 314-436-5222. MEN IN BLAZERS: 8 p.m., $20-$60. Delmar Hall, 6133 Delmar Blvd., St. Louis, 314-726-6161. MOTHERFOLK: 8 p.m., $10-$13. The Monocle, 4510 Manchester Ave, St. Louis, 314-935-7003. A PLACE BOTH WONDERFUL & STRANGE: w/ CaveofswordS, Seashine, Powder River 8 p.m., $10. The Crack Fox, 1114 Olive St., St. Louis, 314-621-6900. TECH N9NE: w/ Krizz Kaliko, Just Juice, Joey Cool, King Iso 8 p.m., $27.50-$30. The Pageant, 6161 Delmar Blvd., St. Louis, 314-7266161.

FRIDAY 15

AARON GRIFFIN: 7 p.m., free. Hwy 61 Roadhouse and Kitchen, 34 S Old Orchard Ave, Webster Groves, 314-968-0061. THE BIG WU: 7 p.m., $15-$18. Atomic Cowboy Pavilion, 4140 Manchester Avenue, St. Louis,

ics), Alvin owns the traditions — honky

—Roy Kasten

314-775-0775. A DARK ORBIT: w/ Dischordia, The Summoned, As Earth Shatters 8 p.m., $8. The Sinkhole, 7423 South Broadway, St. Louis, 314-328-2309. DIANA KRALL: 8 p.m., $45-$125. Peabody Opera House, 1400 Market St, St. Louis, 314499-7600. DYNAMO PRO-WRESTLING: 8 p.m., $10-$12. Fubar, 3108 Locust St, St. Louis, 314-2899050. HI-POINTE SOUL REVUE: 8 p.m., free. Element, 1419 Carroll St., St. Louis, 314-241-1674. INCHES FROM GLORY: w/ The Slow Boys 7 p.m., free. Foam Coffee & Beer, 3359 Jefferson Ave., St. Louis, 314-772-2100. JEREMIAH JOHNSON BAND: 8 p.m., $10. Off Broadway, 3509 Lemp Ave., St. Louis, 314498-6989. JOHN FORD: 7 p.m., $5. BB’s Jazz, Blues & Soups, 700 S. Broadway, St. Louis, 314-4365222. KEITH URBAN: 6 p.m., TBA. Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre, I-70 & Earth City Expwy., Maryland Heights, 314-298-9944. LUCABRASI: w/ Hounds, Sundiver 8 p.m., $10. Delmar Hall, 6133 Delmar Blvd., St. Louis, 314-726-6161. MOUTON: w/ The Death, Boreal Hills 10 p.m., $5. Foam Coffee & Beer, 3359 Jefferson Ave., St. Louis, 314-772-2100. NIGHT MARKET: 6 p.m., free. The Ready Room, 4195 Manchester Ave, St. Louis, 314-833-3929. RENTED ROOMS: w/ Dibiase 8 p.m., $8-$10. The

duke’s VOTED ST. LOUIS’ FAVORITE BAR & BEST SPORTS BAR AT THE CORNER OF MENARD & ALLEN IN THE HEART OF HISTORIC SOULARD

Duke’s Photos by Big Stu Media

Duke’s Sports Bar Where the Games Begin

FIND OUT ALL THAT’S GOING ON @DUKESINSOULARD

riverfronttimes.com

j u ne 1 3 - 1 9 , 2 0 1 8

RIVERFRONT TIMES

57


ONE NATION. ONE AMERICA. WE STAND TOGETHER. COMMUNITY PROUD. SHERRY MITCHELL. DEAN ROSE. AARON MICHAEL FINNEGAN. JON CARLSON. RYAN MCHUGH. JUDITH HOWARD. ANGELA MORRIS. BETH SORRELL. FISH EYE FUN. KIP KOHNZ. DOUG SMITH. KATIE BROWN. LAURA CROSS. JUST JOHN. JIMMY WALSH. BAR PM. TODD ALAN. JASON BENGE. JULIE MALONE. VICKI CORUM. JILL AUL. JIM BUNTIN. PAUL HOF. JOE HEDLEY. TODD BRANDT. MARK COLAO. JENNIFER JONES. PRIDE ST. CHARLES. ALEXANDER CASEY MCCLURE. MARK MADONNA. MICHELLE MARCUS. JASON AND HOLDEN JOHNSON. CLAIRE AUGUSTINE. CHRIS PINSON. GARY KLUESNER. TODD MONNING. MATT SORRELL. JASON MCADAMS. TOD BURKHEAD. PAUL REIGELSBERGER. DOUB ROBINSON. JOHN OBERKRAMER. BRIAN STEFANI. DELTA DAWN. KAREEM LAHAI-PUMAGOI. MCCLURE-HALBERG, INC. REHAB BAR AND GRILL. GATEWAY ANIMAL CLINIC. SCOTT MIEDROTH. BILL AUL. WINSTON HALVERSON. JEROMY RUOT. BRUCE KARMAZIN. LEON BRAXTON, JR. MAXWELL WATERS. DENNIS GORG. CATHERINE RENKINS. ST. CHARLES PFLAG. TERRY LAUPP. PRIDE ST. LOUIS. EMILY KOHLER-TINTERA. DANNY GLADDEN. KEVIN CASTLEBERRY. SHANE SPILLMAN. SHAWN TELKAMP. BECKIE JACOBS. JAMES DUNSE. STEVE NEELY. RYANE CHATMAN. THORNS AND INK. BRITTA KRABILL. INCLUSIVE INDEXING. MATTHEW FERNANDES. CHAD CARROLL. JACOB NORTON. KEVIN HIRSCH. SERENDIPITY HOMEMADE ICE CREAM. JIMMY R. SARAH AND MARCY GAMBLIN-LUIG. LINDSEY SMITH. ST. LOUIS BALLOON BRIGADE. COFFEE CARTEL. MINION STUFF. MR. MISSOURI LEATHER ORGANIZATION. RYAN MISER. GARY STREETING. STOUT IN SOLIDARITY. WOLF BUDDY SMITH. MACK. MICHAEL. NICOLE WILSON. JULIE HORST. NICHOLAS CANTAZARO. TIMOTHY RAINEY. LANDON BROWNFIELD. MADELINE MEYEROWITZ. CATHLEEN CRISWELL. SUE TOUCHON. ALICIA MERCHANT. MARK TURPIN. MATTHEW ELLIS. COVENE. SEAN CARL. SCOTT RESTOFF. MARK MCGRATH. KEVIN WELCH. JOHN SCHULER. PATRICK BURKE. RANDALL BEANS. ROBYN BERKLEY. JR SCHAEFER. MATT HARPER. CHRISTOPHER ENGLEMAN. TROPICAL LIQUEURS. MELISSA BREERS. CARRIE BALLENGER AND KEITH BECKER. HOWARDS. HASAN QINDAH. RICK DUNSMORE. JEFF GULANS. JOHN JONES. METRO TRANS UMBRELLA GROUP. JOSHUA BROWN. WILL MUCKRIDGE. 58

RIVERFRONT TIMES

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Firebird, 2706 Olive St., St. Louis, 314-5350353. ROCKIN’ JOHNNY BURGIN: 10 p.m., $5. BB’s Jazz, Blues & Soups, 700 S. Broadway, St. Louis, 314-436-5222. SPACE CADAVER: w/ Old Hand 9 p.m., $7. The Heavy Anchor, 5226 Gravois Ave., St. Louis, 314-352-5226. THE STEEL WOODS: 8 p.m., $10-$12. Old Rock House, 1200 S. 7th St., St. Louis, 314-588-0505.

SATURDAY 16

BIG EASY: 9 p.m., free. Nightshift Bar & Grill, 3979 Mexico Road, St. Peters, 636-441-8300. JAPANESE BREAKFAST: 8 p.m., $18-$20. The Ready Room, 4195 Manchester Ave, St. Louis, 314-833-3929. JOE GOODKIN: 8 p.m., $10. The Monocle, 4510 Manchester Ave, St. Louis, 314-935-7003. NOT THE RFT SHOWCASE! (A SHOWCASE): w/ RA Child, Brain Transplant, Randi Bolton, Kingston Family Singers, NNN Cook, Tubby Tom, Beauty Pageant 8 p.m., free. Foam Coffee & Beer, 3359 Jefferson Ave., St. Louis, 314-772-2100. SKEET RODGERS & INNER CITY BLUES BAND: 10 p.m., $5. BB’s Jazz, Blues & Soups, 700 S. Broadway, St. Louis, 314-436-5222. SOMEBODY TO LOVE: A TRIBUTE TO QUEEN: w/ Saints In The City: A Tribute to Bruce Springsteen 8 p.m., $15. Delmar Hall, 6133 Delmar Blvd., St. Louis, 314-726-6161. STLHC SUMMER KICKOFF BBQ: w/ Push Off, Lowered AD, Life Sucks, Kill Their Past, Chalked Up, Brute Force, Time and Pressure

6 p.m., free. The Sinkhole, 7423 South Broadway, St. Louis, 314-328-2309. SWEETIE AND THE TOOTHACHES: 2:30 p.m., free. Das Bevo Biergarten, 4749 Gravois Ave., St. Louis, 314-224-5521. THE WILD & FREE: w/ Jay Putty 9 p.m., $7. The Heavy Anchor, 5226 Gravois Ave., St. Louis, 314-352-5226. TOM HALL: 7 p.m., $5. BB’s Jazz, Blues & Soups, 700 S. Broadway, St. Louis, 314-4365222. TOMMY HALLORAN: 7 p.m., free. Das Bevo Biergarten, 4749 Gravois Ave., St. Louis, 314-224-5521. A TRIBUTE TO TUPAC SHAKUR: 7 p.m., $5. 2720 Cherokee Performing Arts Center, 2720 Cherokee St, St. Louis, 314-276-2700. TYPHOON: w/ The Fourth Wall 8 p.m., $16-$18. Off Broadway, 3509 Lemp Ave., St. Louis, 314-498-6989. URIZEN: 7 p.m., $12. Fubar, 3108 Locust St, St. Louis, 314-289-9050.

STL’s Hottest Dance Party!

SUNDAY 17

#BLACKBOYJOY: w/ Royce Martin, Jim. Golliday, Hello JiZoo, Mac Da One and Tre G 6 p.m., $15. .Zack, 3224 Locust St, St. Louis, 314-533-0367. THE BLASTERS: w/ Clownvis Presley 8 p.m., $15-$18. Old Rock House, 1200 S. 7th St., St. Louis, 314-588-0505. JOHN FOGERTY, ZZ TOP: 6 p.m., $25-$179.50. Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre, I-70 & Earth City Expwy., Maryland Heights, 314298-9944.

THURS - FRIDAY - SATURDAY

[WEEKEND]

BEST BETS

10 Can’t-Miss Acts at ShowcaseSTL 2018 With 139 performances across elev-

funk flag.

en stages over two days, ShowcaseSTL 2018 will be one for the history

Subtropolis

books. Yet if you’ve looked at the

7 p.m. at Trops (4104 Manchester Avenue)

lineup and thought, “Yeah, I haven’t

With its wild, polyrhythmic rip and cir-

heard of many of these bands,” you’re

cuit-bent surf riffs, Subtropolis offers

not alone. In fact, it’s by design. The

a tectonic shifting of massive rock.

festival is the RFT’s tribute to what’s

The way this band glues its layers to-

happening right now in the local mu-

gether with a subtle sleight of hand

sic scene, and for every headliner

distracts from the fact that all that

or longtime local favorite, there are

sound is coming from only two peo-

many more up-and-comers. In addi-

ple. Born from the remains of Popular

tion to the 77 acts in this week’s cov-

Mechanics, a now-defunct St. Louis

er story, here are ten under-the-radar

favorite, this duo grinds out a synco-

shows to see now ... and later boast

pated mass of jerky jams.

Duke’s Photos by Big Stu Media

Always Fun and Games on the Patio

you saw them before they blew up.

SATURDAY, JUNE 16

Wax Fruit 8 p.m. at Taha’a Twisted Tiki (4199 Manchester Avenue)

Brother Francis and the Soultones

Hailing from “Devo” Mill, Wax Fruit

6:30 p.m. at Firecracker Pizza & Beer (4130 Manchester Avenue)

casts a large shadow, with towering

Underneath all that smooth-moving

pointed beats. The melodies come

R&B is a space rock band begging

howling from the other side of a long

to get out, but maybe it’s in Brother

and winding tunnel, picking up detri-

Francis and company’s best interest

tus along the way. The most human

to keep their wilder side in check.

element, the vocals, blend in the

After all, it’s the underlying tinge of

wash of warm, warbling bass and

psychedelia that makes this crew one

keys. They’re a pop duo for the next

of the most engrossing and intriguing

millennium.

bands in St. Louis ever to wave that

sounds built from lush synths and

Continued on pg 59

AT THE CORNER OF MENARD & ALLEN IN THE HEART OF HISTORIC SOULARD FIND OUT ALL THAT’S GOING ON @DUKESINSOULARD

riverfronttimes.com

j u ne 1 3 - 1 9 , 2 0 1 8

RIVERFRONT TIMES

59


LOVE JONES “THE BAND”: 9 p.m., $10. BB’s Jazz, Blues & Soups, 700 S. Broadway, St. Louis, 314-436-5222. MOTOGRATER: w/ Terror Universal 7 p.m., $12-$14. Fubar, 3108 Locust St, St. Louis, 314-289-9050. PRODUCT KF: w/ Sunday Candy, the Funny Section 9 p.m., $5. Blank Space, 2847 Cherokee St., St. Louis. RENEE SMITH & DADDY’S LITTLE GIRLS: 5 p.m., $15. BB’s Jazz, Blues & Soups, 700 S. Broadway, St. Louis, 314-436-5222. RIVER CITY OPRY: JUNE EDITION: 1 p.m., $5. Off Broadway, 3509 Lemp Ave., St. Louis, 314498-6989. SEAKWENSE: w/ LoveBaker, LexxiiiBeatz, IkeZero 9 p.m., $5. Foam Coffee & Beer, 3359 Jefferson Ave., St. Louis, 314-772-2100. STOKLEY WILLIAMS: 7 p.m., $45-$65. Blanche M

Touhill Performing Arts Center, 1 University Dr at Natural Bridge Road, Normandy, 314-516-4949. ZZ WARD: 8 p.m., $22.50-$25. Delmar Hall, 6133 Delmar Blvd., St. Louis, 314-726-6161.

MONDAY 18

DEATHCROWN: w/ Animated Dead, Groin Mallet 8 p.m., $10-$12. Fubar, 3108 Locust St, St. Louis, 314-289-9050. ROCKY MANTIA & KILLER COMBO: 7 p.m., $10. BB’s Jazz, Blues & Soups, 700 S. Broadway, St. Louis, 314-436-5222. SAMA DAMS: 9 p.m., $7. Foam Coffee & Beer, 3359 Jefferson Ave., St. Louis, 314-772-2100.

TUESDAY 19

THE BACON BROTHERS: 8 p.m., $35-$40. Delmar Hall, 6133 Delmar Blvd., St. Louis, 314-726-

WEEKEND Continued from pg 58

subtle edge, bringing with him years

SirEddieC

The result is songwriting that shines,

9 p.m. at Gezellig (4191 Manchester Avenue)

whether the band is out in full force

SirEddieC’s sound may seem alien.

or Pascale takes the stage with little

But he’s just ahead of the curve: The

more than her voice.

of work with experimental outfit Ish.

Belleville-based rapper was dropping references to Ric Flair long before Off-

Mammoth Piano

set and Metro Boomin went platinum

7 p.m. at ParlorSTL (4170 Manchester Avenue)

with the Drip. He’s since moved on to

Vocalist Nanyamka Ewing stomps

other, more obscure references, all

the cabaret to bits and counts on

pulled from a big bag of tricks that in-

the rest of her band to glue the

clude a buoyant flow and straight-up,

pieces back together. The result is

solid beats.

statuesque rock & roll that contorts around strong vocal leads and a

Teacup Dragun

forceful backbeat. The mash-up of

10:30 p.m. at the Gramophone (4243 Manchester Ave)

genres is not without bumps and

By flexing in the space between trap

bruises, but that’s by design.

and R&B, Teacup Dragun can swing gently and still hit like a bag of bricks.

Dee Bird

On record and on stage, she isn’t per-

8 p.m. at Layla (4317 Manchester Avenue)

forming as much as she is living her

As one half of Dubb Nubb, Delia

life. She’s the realest of the real.

Rainey is one of St. Louis’ top folk producers. Although her twin sister

SUNDAY, JUNE 17

Hannah isn’t present, Delia deals

Subtle Aggression Monopoly

with the phantom limb by sweetly

5:30 p.m. at the Bootleg (4140 Manchester Avenue)

singing songs that stand just as tall.

With FarFetched labelmates such

For ShowcaseSTL, Dee Bird will flex

as Damon Davis, Caveofswords and

her solo songwriter muscle before a

Mathias & the Pirates, it can be hard

planned relocation to Chicago.

for a duo like Subtle Aggression Monopoly to stand out. After all, “subtle”

Kaleb Kirby

is right there in the name. But dis-

9 p.m. at Gezellig (4191 Manchester Avenue)

counting the longtime dream team of

Lately, Kaleb Kirby can be seen as the

P.O.E.T-j and C@$P3R would be sell-

singer and synth player for A Leaf in the

ing short one of St. Louis’ best hip-

Street, a Technicolor dream pop trio,

hop acts, period.

even as his role as both drummer and architect behind jazz juggernaut Ani-

Cherokee Moon

mal Children gives the impression that

6:30 p.m. at HandleBar (4127 Manchester Avenue)

he can do anything. So, as a solo art-

Cherokee Moon takes the sweet song-

ist, he does. Working with pre-recorded

craft of Hal Pascale and amplifies ev-

material and other machinations, Kir-

ery latent note, magnifying the melo-

by descends on the drumset with an

dies while adding a depth of sound.

abstract approach to percussion.

Bandmate Brit Lockhart introduces a

60

RIVERFRONT TIMES

j u ne 1 3 - 1 9 , 2 0 1 8

—RFT Staff

riverfronttimes.com

6161. PLAIN WHITE T’S: w/ Ocean Park Standoff 8 p.m., $25-$30. Old Rock House, 1200 S. 7th St., St. Louis, 314-588-0505. THE PRESCRIPTIONS: w/ Little Cowboy 9 p.m., $5. Foam Coffee & Beer, 3359 Jefferson Ave., St. Louis, 314-772-2100. THE REGRETTES: 7 p.m., $10. Off Broadway, 3509 Lemp Ave., St. Louis, 314-498-6989. SPEEDY ORTIZ: 8 p.m., $13-$15. Blueberry Hill - The Duck Room, 6504 Delmar Blvd., University City, 314-727-4444. ST. LOUIS SOCIAL CLUB: 9 p.m., $5. BB’s Jazz, Blues & Soups, 700 S. Broadway, St. Louis, 314-436-5222. STEELY DAN, THE DOOBIE BROTHERS: 7 p.m., TBA. Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre, I-70 & Earth City Expwy., Maryland Heights, 314-298-9944. SUTPHIN: w/ Shark Dad 9 p.m., $5. The Ready Room, 4195 Manchester Ave, St. Louis, 314833-3929. TWISTED INSANE: w/ Anakin, ODDITY, Jay Edd, Yerrty G, Retro Champ, Main Event, Deezy Da Paperboy, RGD 6 p.m., $10-$12. Pop’s Nightclub, 401 Monsanto Ave., East St. Louis, 618-274-6720.

WEDNESDAY 20

BIG RICH MCDONOUGH & RHYTHM RENEGADES: 7 p.m., $5. BB’s Jazz, Blues & Soups, 700 S. Broadway, St. Louis, 314-436-5222. BODY VOID: w/ Coffin Fit, Alder 8 p.m., $8. The Sinkhole, 7423 South Broadway, St. Louis, 314-328-2309. DAVID BLAINE: 6 p.m., $39-$125.99. Peabody Opera House, 1400 Market St, St. Louis, 314499-7600. AN EVENING WITH THE AUTHORS: 9 p.m., $7. The Heavy Anchor, 5226 Gravois Ave., St. Louis, 314-352-5226. NIGHT RIOTS: w/ courtship., Silent Rival 8 p.m., $14-$16. Blueberry Hill - The Duck Room, 6504 Delmar Blvd., University City, 314-727-4444. THE SEA AND CAKE: 8 p.m., $15. Old Rock House, 1200 S. 7th St., St. Louis, 314-588-0505. THE BOBBY STEVENS BAND: w/ Nick Gusman, Bucko Toby 8 p.m., $3. The Ready Room, 4195 Manchester Ave, St. Louis, 314-8333929. TORREY CASEY & SOUTHSIDE HUSTLE: 10 p.m., $5. BB’s Jazz, Blues & Soups, 700 S. Broadway, St. Louis, 314-436-5222. WE ARE UNITED LOCAL MUSIC SHOWCASE: w/ Red Foreman 6 p.m., $10-$12. The Firebird, 2706 Olive St., St. Louis, 314-535-0353.

THIS JUST IN

THE 2ND ANNUAL FREEDOM PROJECT: W/ Freddy D’Angelo, Fly Method, Shannon Meadow, Renna, Don’t Care, Phonzz, Wed., Aug. 8, 8 p.m., $10. Old Rock House, 1200 S. 7th St., St. Louis, 314-588-0505. AARON LEWIS: Thu., July 26, 8 p.m., $40-$45. The Pageant, 6161 Delmar Blvd., St. Louis, 314-726-6161. ALKALINE TRIO: W/ togetherPangea, Mon., Aug. 6, 7 p.m., $24-$29. The Pageant, 6161 Delmar Blvd., St. Louis, 314-726-6161. AMANDA SEALES: Thu., Aug. 9, 8 p.m., $25. Delmar Hall, 6133 Delmar Blvd., St. Louis, 314-726-6161. BEN RECTOR: Fri., Nov. 9, 8 p.m., $29.50$39.50. The Pageant, 6161 Delmar Blvd., St. Louis, 314-726-6161. BENNY BENASSI: Sat., Sept. 22, 9 p.m., $15. Ameristar Casino, 1 Ameristar Blvd., St. Charles, 636-949-7777. BIG RICH MCDONOUGH & RHYTHM RENEGADES: Sat., June 23, 7 p.m., $5. BB’s Jazz, Blues & Soups, 700 S. Broadway, St. Louis, 314-4365222. BILLY STRINGS: Thu., Oct. 4, 8 p.m., $15-$18. Old Rock House, 1200 S. 7th St., St. Louis, 314-588-0505. BLESSTHEFALL: W/ The Word Alive, Ded, Thousand Below, A War Within, Tue., Sept. 25, 6 p.m., $18-$20. Delmar Hall, 6133 Delmar Blvd., St. Louis, 314-726-6161. CJ KNOCKS OUT CANCER: A BENEFIT SHOWCASE: W/ Opposites Attack, Trio of Parks, Ramona Deflowered, Fri., Aug. 3, 7 p.m., $10. Fubar, 3108 Locust St, St. Louis, 314-289-9050. CODY CANADA & THE DEPARTED: Fri., Oct. 12,

8 p.m., $15-$18. Old Rock House, 1200 S. 7th St., St. Louis, 314-588-0505. COURTNEY MARIE ANDREWS: Mon., Sept. 24, 8 p.m., $10. Off Broadway, 3509 Lemp Ave., St. Louis, 314-498-6989. CULTS: W/ The Shacks, Wed., Aug. 22, 8 p.m., $15-$18. The Ready Room, 4195 Manchester Ave, St. Louis, 314-833-3929. DANIEL FRANCIS DOYLE: W/ Nebulosa, Sun., July 22, 9 p.m., $7. Blank Space, 2847 Cherokee St., St. Louis. DARK STAR ORCHESTRA: Thu., Oct. 4, 8 p.m., $29.50-$35. The Pageant, 6161 Delmar Blvd., St. Louis, 314-726-6161. DEAD SARA: Tue., Sept. 11, 8 p.m., $12-$15. The Ready Room, 4195 Manchester Ave, St. Louis, 314-833-3929. DJ CRIM D CRAY: Fri., July 20, 9 p.m., $7. Blank Space, 2847 Cherokee St., St. Louis. DK THE DRUMMER: W/ Sucré, Sun., Aug. 26, 8 p.m., $12-$15. The Ready Room, 4195 Manchester Ave, St. Louis, 314-833-3929. DUMPSTAPHUNK: W/ Tropidelic, Wed., Sept. 5, 8 p.m., $22-$25. Delmar Hall, 6133 Delmar Blvd., St. Louis, 314-726-6161. EL TEN ELEVEN: Tue., Nov. 6, 8 p.m., $15-$17. Old Rock House, 1200 S. 7th St., St. Louis, 314-588-0505. EVEN THEN RECORD RELEASE: W/ Mild Martian, Shark Dad, Young Animals, Fri., June 29, 8 p.m., $8-$10. The Firebird, 2706 Olive St., St. Louis, 314-535-0353. FREEDM: W/ FALLEX, Vanilla Gorilla, Mobcat, TonyDaTyger, Thu., June 28, 9 p.m., free. 2720 Cherokee Performing Arts Center, 2720 Cherokee St, St. Louis, 314-276-2700. THE GODDAMN GALLOWS: Sun., Aug. 26, 7 p.m., $12-$15. Fubar, 3108 Locust St, St. Louis, 314-289-9050. GREG LASWELL: Tue., Sept. 11, 8 p.m., $15. Old Rock House, 1200 S. 7th St., St. Louis, 314-588-0505. HELL NIGHT, SWEAT SHOPPE: Sat., July 28, 9 p.m., $10. The Firebird, 2706 Olive St., St. Louis, 314-535-0353. HI-POINTE SOUL REVUE: Fri., June 15, 8 p.m., free. Fri., July 20, 8 p.m., free. Element, 1419 Carroll St., St. Louis, 314-241-1674. HIPPO CAMPUS: W/ The Districts, Tue., Oct. 9, 8 p.m., $22-$25. The Pageant, 6161 Delmar Blvd., St. Louis, 314-726-6161. JAMEY JOHNSON: W/ Sunny Sweeney & Ward Davis, Thu., Aug. 2, 7 p.m., $37-$40. Old Rock House, 1200 S. 7th St., St. Louis, 314-588-0505. THE JAUNTEE: Tue., June 26, 7 p.m., $7-$10. The Bootleg, 4140 Manchester Ave., St. Louis, 314-775-0775. JOE GOODKIN: Sat., June 16, 8 p.m., $10. The Monocle, 4510 Manchester Ave, St. Louis, 314-935-7003. JON SPENCER: Tue., Aug. 7, 8 p.m., $15. Old Rock House, 1200 S. 7th St., St. Louis, 314588-0505. JONATHAN TYLER AND THE NORTHERN LIGHTS: Thu., July 26, 8 p.m., $10. Off Broadway, 3509 Lemp Ave., St. Louis, 314-498-6989. LOST DOG STREET BAND: W/ Tyler Gregory, Fri., July 20, 7 p.m., $10-$12. Fubar, 3108 Locust St, St. Louis, 314-289-9050. LOUFEST MUSIC FESTIVAL 2018: Sat., Sept. 8, noon; Sun., Sept. 9, noon, $95. Forest Park, 5595 Grand Dr, St. Louis. LOUFEST U: Fri., Sept. 7, 5 p.m., free. Forest Park, 5595 Grand Dr, St. Louis. MANCHESTER ORCHESTRA: W/ (Sandy) Alex G, Kevin Devine, Tue., Aug. 7, 8 p.m., $22.49$35. The Pageant, 6161 Delmar Blvd., St. Louis, 314-726-6161. MARC BROUSSARD: Fri., Nov. 16, 8 p.m., $22-$25. Old Rock House, 1200 S. 7th St., St. Louis, 314-588-0505. MARQUISE KNOX BLUES BAND: Sat., June 23, 10 p.m., $5. BB’s Jazz, Blues & Soups, 700 S. Broadway, St. Louis, 314-436-5222. THE MATCHING SHOE: Fri., July 20, 8 p.m., $10. Old Rock House, 1200 S. 7th St., St. Louis, 314-588-0505. MAX FROST: Sat., Oct. 20, 8 p.m., $15-$18. Off Broadway, 3509 Lemp Ave., St. Louis, 314498-6989. MOBILE DEATHCAMP: Mon., Aug. 27, 7 p.m., $12-$14. Fubar, 3108 Locust St, St. Louis, 314-289-9050. MUSIC FOR A CURE: W/ Chris Black, Fri., June 29, 8 p.m., $20-$25. Voce, 212 S. Tucker Blvd.,


[CRITIC’S PICK]

Speedy Ortiz. | VIA GROUND CONTROL TOURING

Speedy Ortiz

the more personal, romance-derived

8 p.m. Tuesday, June 19.

songs felt out of place in our current cli-

Blueberry Hill’s the Duck Room, 6504 Delmar Boulevard. $13. 314-727-4444.

mate. For all that, the version of Twerp

The personal and political reckonings

overtly political. Instead, Dupuis takes

that came after the 2016 presidential

a sharp, incisive edge to her songs, with

election had some odd ripples that con-

lyrics that mirror the lovely discord or er-

tinue to emanate some eighteen months

rant guitar riffs and on-point harmonies.

later. To wit: Speedy Ortiz, the grunge-

2 Cool 2 Miss: Anna Burch, whose solo

flecked quartet from Massachusetts,

debut album Quit the Curse is one of

ending up scrapping an earlier incar-

the highlights of the first half of 2018,

nation of its latest album — singer and

opens the show.

Verse that came out this year is rarely

songwriter Sadie Dupuis thought that

—Christian Schaeffer

St. Louis, 314-435-3956. NO THANKS: W/ Body Leash, Sat., Aug. 11, 9 p.m., $7. Blank Space, 2847 Cherokee St., St. Louis. NOT THE RFT SHOWCASE! (A SHOWCASE): W/ RA Child, Brain Transplant, Randi Bolton, Kingston Family Singers, NNN Cook, Tubby Tom, Beauty Pageant, Sat., June 16, 8 p.m., free. Foam Coffee & Beer, 3359 Jefferson Ave., St. Louis, 314-772-2100. NOVENA: W/ Hello JiZoo, Lakes the Voice, Thu., June 28, 8:30 p.m., $5. Way Out Club, 2525 S. Jefferson Ave., St. Louis, 314-6647638. PATTON OSWALT: Sat., Dec. 1, 8 p.m., $40-$85. Family Arena, 2002 Arena Parkway, St Charles, 636-896-4200. PIRATE SIGNALS: W/ Tok, Fri., July 20, 9 p.m., $7. The Heavy Anchor, 5226 Gravois Ave., St. Louis, 314-352-5226. PRODUCT KF: W/ Sunday Candy, the Funny Section, Sun., June 17, 9 p.m., $5. Blank Space, 2847 Cherokee St., St. Louis. REED STEWART: W/ Bear Cub, Scarlet Views, Sat., June 23, 9 p.m., $7. The Heavy Anchor, 5226 Gravois Ave., St. Louis, 314-352-5226. RIVVRS: Sun., Aug. 12, 8 p.m., free. Off Broadway, 3509 Lemp Ave., St. Louis, 314-498-6989. ROCKY & THE WRANGLERS: Sat., June 23, 4 p.m., $5. BB’s Jazz, Blues & Soups, 700 S. Broadway, St. Louis, 314-436-5222. ROWEN M. HAWKES: W/ the Opera Bell Band, Ryan Koenig, Fri., July 20, 9 p.m., $5. Foam Coffee & Beer, 3359 Jefferson Ave., St. Louis, 314-772-2100. S.L.U.M. FEST 2018: Sat., June 23, 3 p.m., $10$13. 2720 Cherokee Performing Arts Center, 2720 Cherokee St, St. Louis, 314-276-2700. SEVEN LIONS: Fri., Oct. 19, 8 p.m., $30-$32.

Delmar Hall, 6133 Delmar Blvd., St. Louis, 314-726-6161. SHARI PUORTO BAND: Fri., June 22, 9 p.m., $10. BB’s Jazz, Blues & Soups, 700 S. Broadway, St. Louis, 314-436-5222. SOB X RBE: W/ Quando Rondo, Thu., Oct. 11, 8 p.m., $20. Fubar, 3108 Locust St, St. Louis, 314-289-9050. STONE SOUR: W/ Shaman’s Harvest, Sat., Sept. 22, 8 p.m., $30-$55. The Pageant, 6161 Delmar Blvd., St. Louis, 314-726-6161. SUPERFUN YEAH YEAH ROCKETSHIP: W/ General B and the Wiz, Tue., July 24, 8 p.m., $5. Foam Coffee & Beer, 3359 Jefferson Ave., St. Louis, 314-772-2100. SWEETIE AND THE TOOTHACHES: Sat., June 16, 2:30 p.m., free. Das Bevo Biergarten, 4749 Gravois Ave., St. Louis, 314-224-5521. TEENAGE WRIST: W/ The Greeting Committee, Synthetic Sun, Fri., July 27, 7 p.m., $10.57$13. Delmar Hall, 6133 Delmar Blvd., St. Louis, 314-726-6161. TONINA: W/ Sister Wizzard, Allegra Krieger, Wed., July 25, 9 p.m., $7. Foam Coffee & Beer, 3359 Jefferson Ave., St. Louis, 314-7722100. TV GIRL: W/ Infinity Crush, Mon., July 16, 8 p.m., $10-$12. Foam Coffee & Beer, 3359 Jefferson Ave., St. Louis, 314-772-2100. THE VINCENT SCANDAL: W/ Tonina, Motherbear, Wed., June 27, 9 p.m., free. Foam Coffee & Beer, 3359 Jefferson Ave., St. Louis, 314-772-2100. VOODOO FLEETWOOD MAC: Fri., July 6, 6 p.m., free. Atomic Cowboy Pavilion, 4140 Manchester Avenue, St. Louis, 314-775-0775. THE WHIFFS: W/ Shitstorm, Mon., July 9, 9 p.m., $7. Blank Space, 2847 Cherokee St., St. Louis.

Make Good Times Your Weekend Destination 200 N. MAIN, DUPO, IL @GOODTIMES.PATIO.BAR riverfronttimes.com

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Thursday June 14 9PM

Surco plus Tree One Four Friday June 15 10PM

The Iguanas Tex-Mex from NOLA Saturday June 16 10PM

Jakes Leg

Sunday June 17 4PM

Patty and the Hitmen FREE SHOW!

Wednesday June 20 9:30PM Urban Chestnut Presents

The Voodoo Players Tribute To Bob Weir

Thursday June 21 9:30PM Urban Chestnut Presents

Alligator Wine’s Tribute To The Dead Friday June 22 and Saturday June 23

Crab Festival 2018

music read more at RIVERFRONTTIMES.COM

62

RIVERFRONT TIMES

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riverfronttimes.com


SAVAGE LOVE RETROACTIVE BLESSINGS BY DAN SAVAGE Hey, Dan: Without snooping, I came across texts between my wife “Mary” and a guy “Jeremy” of a very sexual nature. While I would be okay if she were doing this and I knew about it, this has been going on since before we met. (We’ve been together ten years.) She says she has never met him in person (despite communicating with him for more than a decade!) and this was the only thing she was doing that she thought would have been out of bounds. Again, if I had known, it would have been fine. I’m not OK with her being with other guys, but I know harmless flirting can be a release. Still, I have issues with anxiety and depression, and this is definitely triggering me. I do not want to snoop and I want to trust her, but I am having a hard time with both. Prior to this, it never occurred to me that Mary would do anything that had a whiff of dishonesty about it. But her having kept this from me for as long as I have known her has made me question that. I don’t want to keep bringing this up to her, but I am struggling with it. What do you think I should do? Upset In The Midwest I think you should get over it, UITM. Easier said than done, I realize, particularly with the twin burdens of anxiety and depression. But if you would have been fine with this had you known — if there was no reason for Mary to hide this LTRof-sorts from you — the best way to prove that to her is by giving it your retroactive blessing. You’re right, UITM: Mary shouldn’t have hidden this from you. But she assumed — incorrectly, as it turned out — you would have a problem with those texts. It was a reasonable assumption on her part, since swapping flirty texts with a stranger is regarded as “out of bounds” by most. While this makes Mary’s failure to disclose look a little worse, we live in a culture that defines absolutely everything as cheating — don’t get me started on the idiocy that is “micro-infidelities” and the idiots

pushing that toxic concept — and as a consequence, people not only lack perspective (oh, to live in a world where everyone regarded harmless flirtation as no big deal!) but also the language to honestly discuss our need for a little harmless erotic affirmation from someone who isn’t obligated to find us attractive, i.e., not a spouse or partner. Put yourself in Mary’s shoes for a moment. When should she have told you about Jeremy? What would you have done if on the third or fourth date, she looked up from her menu and said, “I’ve been swapping flirty texts with this guy for, oh, the last several years. I have no interest in him in real life, we’ve actually never even met in person, but I enjoy his texts and would like to keep swapping texts with him. I hope that’s not a problem.” You would have dumped her on the spot, right? She didn’t want to stop, she didn’t know how to talk about it, she hesitated, and … a decade went by. If there’s nothing else — if no other shoes drop — give this your retroactive blessing. Hey, Dan: I have an unusual situation. I met a girl I am crazy about. She didn’t really have any interest in me except for the occasional drink; she just wanted to be friends. A few months later, I saw her at a bar. We drank a bit more than we could handle and slept together, and I thought we would start dating. A few weeks went by, and she always had an excuse as to why we couldn’t hang out. Then one night, she texted to say she wanted to see me, but I could tell she was tipsy. We went out for a few more drinks and then slept together again. A week later, the same thing happened. When I contact her during the day, she never seems interested. But I run over like a starved dog when she calls at night. (Sadly, due to stress and overwork, I usually can’t get hard when I go over. That’s become a big issue.) She’s very attractive, and I’m surprised she has any interest in me at all, but it’s only when she’s drunk. Besides her looks, I’m attracted by her personality and intelligence. I don’t know what attracts her to me except maybe I’m her booty call, but recently I have been terrible at it. The last time we hooked up, she told me she’s quitting drinking. Maybe she won’t

So long as the summoned person doesn’t want anything more than sex from the person issuing the summons, Yahtzee: Everybody gets laid, nobody gets hurt. contact me anymore. My question: Is it worth pursuing this if I get my ED situation fixed? Or should I just move on and if she does contact me one night, I just say, “Sorry, not interested”? It’s obvious she’s using me. But we actually have good conversations despite us both being drunk and it kinda seems like a date of some sort. What do you think? Summoned With A Text She’s interested in you for only one thing (sex) and at only one time (when she’s drunk, horny and out of other options) … and she can summon you with a single drunken late-night text. It’s actually not an unusual situation, SWAT — millions of people have received similar summonses. So long as the summoned person doesn’t want anything more than sex from the person issuing the summons, Yahtzee: Everybody gets laid, nobody gets hurt. But if the person being summoned wants more — if the summonee has unrequited feelings for the summoner — the summoned person is going to get hurt. Because what the summoner is essentially saying is this: “I want sex; I don’t want you.” Even if the sex is good, the rejection that comes bundled in that summons stings and the hurt grows over time. So, yeah, stop answering that drunk girl’s summonses. Let her know you want more than sex, and if she’s not interested in something more, you’re not interested in her. As for those erectile issues, SWAT, try having sex sober, ear-

riverfronttimes.com

63

lier in the evening and with someone who doesn’t regard your dick as a consolation prize. I bet they clear right up. Hey, Dan: I am a transgender man, and my girlfriend is a transgender woman, and we have hit a plateau. Intimate time is rare, communication is minimal, and although I care for her deeply, I do not like her as a person and no longer want to get married. I have considered asking if we could open up the relationship, but I doubt that is the solution. How does one end a longterm relationship? Help Relationship Transition Whatever you do, HRT, please — please — don’t ask to open up your relationship when what you really want is out. A lot of people who want out do this, and it’s why so many people believe all requests to open a relationship are a sign the relationship is doomed. People who want out but ask for open inevitably get out in the end. People who want open and ask for open and get it tend to stay. But since most couples in open relationships aren’t public about it (most are more comfortable being perceived as monogamous), people hear about the insincere requests that preceded a breakup and conclude all requests are insincere. Anyway, HRT, how does one end a long-term relationship? One uses one’s words. If “I love you” are the three magic words, then “I’m leaving you” are the three tragic words. Seeing as intimacy is rare and communication is minimal, it shouldn’t come as a shock to your soon-to-be-ex fiancée. Listen to Dan’s podcast at savagelovecast.com. mail@savagelove.net @fakedansavage on Twitter Want to reach someone at the RFT? If you’re looking to provide info about an event, please contact calendar@ riverfronttimes.com. If you’re passing on a news tip or information relating to food, please email sarah.fenske@riverfronttimes.com. If you’ve got the scoop on nightlife, comedy or music, please email daniel.hill@riverfronttimes.com. Love us? Hate us? You can email sarah. fenske@riverfronttimes.com about that too. Due to the volume of email we receive, we may not respond -- but rest assured we are reading every one.

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• 1st/2nd floor 2 BR • Spacious • Old World Charm • Hdwd floors • Yard, Fireplaces • Off street parking • No C/A, • Nonsmoking bldg • Storage • Professional Oriented

Do you have a band? We have Bookings

314-771-4222 www.stirr.com

ONE MONTH FREE!

RICHMOND HEIGHTS/MAPLEWOOD $555/$645 Near MetroLink, Hwy 40, 44 & Clayton.

$400/$850

1 - 3 BR apts. Many different units. NO CREDIT, NO PROBLEM!

ONE MONTH FREE!

Services WANTS TO PURCHASE MINERALS and other oil & gas interests. Send Details To: PO Box 13557, Denver, CO 80201

MUSICIANS AVAILABLE Do you Need: A Musician? A Band? String Quartet? Call The Musicians Association of St. Louis 314-781-6612 Mon-Fri 10-4:30

Covered by most insurance. Free & confidential assessments. Outpatient Services.

Center Pointe Hospital 314-292-7323 or 800-3455407

Call Angela Jansen 314-645-5900 bankruptcyshopstl.com The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely on advertising.

763 S. New Ballas Rd, Ste. 310

RICHANDCHARLIES.COM

9942 WATSON RD • 4487 LEMAY FERRY RD

Must obtain necessary shots. Must pass Criminal background check.

$500

Special $800 Moves You IN!

Ray & Keokuk 2 BR, hardwood floors, all electric, C/A.

STRONG HANDS To Soothe & Relax

SOUTH CITY

7405 Michigan 1 BR, hardwood floors, all electric, C/A.

ARE YOU ADDICTED TO PAIN MEDICATIONS OR HEROIN? Suboxone can help.

WANTED DISHWASHER

Hospital Cafeteria workers needed

$600

6040 Goodfellow 2BR, C/A & Heat, All Appliances, Off Street Parking, On Bus Route.

SOUTH CITY

Employment

11939 Olive Blvd. Creve Coeur, MO 63141 314-997-4224

JENNINGS

Legal Notices

Ldr, Software Engg @ Mastercard (O'Fallon, MO) F/T: Guide prjcts & cmplx sftwre dvlpmnt assgnmnts w/ broad scope & long-term biz implctns. Dvlp innvtve sftwre solutns that meet specified biz needs. Reqs a Master's deg, or frgn equiv, in Cmptr Scnce, or rltd, & 2 yrs of exp in the job offrd, or as an Sftwr Dvlpr, Prgrmmr Anlst, or rltd. Altrntvly, emp will accpt a Bachelor's degree, or frgn equiv, & 6 yrs of prgrssvly resp exp. Exp mst inclde 2 yrs w/ each: dvlpng & scuring solutns in Financial Srvcs sctr; Usng agile/SAFe framewrk & key technlgy areas to adapt reqs as needed; Object-oriented dsign & prgrmmng; Advanced Java; J2EE; Java Messaging Service; Open source frmewrks (Spring & Hibernate); PL/SQL; JDBC; Webservices: JAX WS & JAX-RS w/ RPC, SOAP, & REST, XML, XSL; UNIX Shell Scripting). Emp will accept any suita combo of edu, training, or exp. Mail resume to Ryan Sullivan @ Mastercard, 2200 Mastercard Blvd, O'Fallon, MO 63368. Ref MC19-2018.

Self-storage contents of the following customers containing household items and other goods will be sold for cash by CubeSmart 725 N. 23rd St., St. Louis, Mo 63103 to satisfy lien on June 20, 2018 at 1:00 P.M. at www.storagetreasures.com Cube # 1094 Audra Summlin Cube # 2176 Cortney Person

riverfronttimes.com

Self-storage Cube contents of the following customers containing household and other goods will be sold for cash by CubeSmart 2661 Veterans Memorial Parkway, St Charles, MO 63303 to satisfy a lien on June 20, 2018 at approx. 3:00 PM at

www.storagetreasures.com

Cube # 1511 Cube # 1266 Cube # 1196 Cube # 1316 Cube # 1045 Cube # 1198 Cube # 1463 Cube # 1072 Cube # 1191

june 13 - 19, 2018

Allyson Freeman Kevin Gostling Charles Ludwig Jen Montgomery Terence Wilson James Worthan Melody Dantone Kay Cobb Elizabeth Viviano

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If You Witness An Overdose DON’T RUN, CALL 911

b VOTED BEST CHINESE! ~2018 RFT Best of St. Louis Poll~

The Changing Pointe

WONTON KING

Dine-In~Carry-out 8116 Olive Blvd~University City 314-567-9997~wontonkingstl.com

Missouri’s “Good Samaritan” law protects people who call 911 from arrest & prosecution for possession of drugs or paraphernalia.

SATISFACTION IS OUR BUSINESS! TTTTTTTTTTT

Shop Patricia’s

b

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South City 3552 Gravois at Grand Mid County 10210 Page Ave (3 mi East of Westport) St. Peters 1034 Venture Dr (70 & Cave Springs-Outer Rd)

DATING MADE EASY! LOCAL SINGLES!

patriciasgiftshop.com

FREE PROMO CODE 9512 314-739-7777 Telemates

Hope for a bright future

DO YOU SUFFER FROM ERECTILE DISFUNCTION? FFF

VOTED FAVORITE INDIAN RESTAURANT! -2018 RFT Best of St. Louis Readers Poll

For Treatment!

FFF For more info call

FOR IRB USE ONLY IRB ID #: 201706063 APPROVAL DATE: 05/16/18 RELEASED DATE: 05/16/18 EXPIRATION DATE: 05/15/19

314-236-7060

Imagine Health

File Bankruptcy Now! Call Angela Jansen ~314-645-5900~ Bankruptcyshopstl.com The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely on advertising.

Summer!

SWEDISH & DEEP TISSUE FULL BODY MASSAGE

Join a study to learn your health risks and how to be healthy. We may want to talk with you if you are 30-64 years old (other criteria will be discussed by phone).

MONDAY-FRIDAY 10AM-5PM SOME WEEKENDS

South County/ Lemay Area

314-620-6386 # 2006003746

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60 Minutes $50 314-643-7309 (No Texts) 11115 New Halls Ferry Road Suite 200 Florissant, MO 63033 Amandasminidayspa.com

Sports Deep Tissue Massage 60 Minutes $70

314-643-7309 By Appointment Only No Texts • Soft Tissue • Swedish • Sports Deep Tissue 11115 New Halls Ferry Rd Suite 200 Florissant, MO 63033

This study has 3 parts: 1 Look at information, listen to an audio recording, answer survey questions PA R T

2 Use text messaging to answer survey questions PA R T

3 Answer a survey mailed to you PA R T

Get Schnuck’s cards: ° $20 for Part 1 ° Up to $40 for Part 2 ° $20 for Part 3

Call or email: ° 314-286-2757 ° waterslab@wustl.edu RIVERFRONT TIMES

9720 Page Ave ~ (314) 423-7300 havelistl.com By Appointment Only

Amandasminidayspa.com

Participation takes about: ° 45 minutes for Part 1 ° 40 minutes over 4 weeks for Part 2 ° 15 minutes for Part 3

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Get the Attention of our Readers Call 314-754-5966 for More Info

Or Just Not Quite Like It Used To Be? I Offer A NEW Technology

Ultimate Massage by

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Above & Below The Belt Manscaping For Men

Call For Appointment

407-494-7425 Theshavemster.com


2012 Winner 2012 Winner

BestLAWYER Lawyer BEST AGGRESSIVE Criminal Defense on YOUR Behalf

AGGRESSIVE CRIMINAL DEFENSE YOUR BEHALF HIRE AN EXPERIENCED DWION ATTORNEY

HIRE AN EXPERIENCED DWI ATTORNEY Get the knowledge and experience YOU need.

GET THE KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERIENCE YOU NEED

Honors and Awards:

HONORS & AWARDS

• Charles Shaw Trial Advocacy Award • Missouri SuperAward Lawyers •Charles Shawand TrialKansas Advocacy •Missouri and Super Lawyers • St.Kansas Louis Magazine, •St.Lawyers Louis Magazine, Best in St. Louis DWI Best Lawyers inTimes St. Louis • Riverfront BestDWI Lawyer •Riverfront Times Best Lawyer • Best Lawyers in United States •Best Lawyers in United States • BestLawyer Lawyertotocall callfrom fromaaDWI DWIcheckcheckpoint, •Best inin Missouri for point,asasvoted votedbybylawyers lawyers Missouri MissouriLawyers LawyersWeekly Weekly for Missouri

Proven Defense by a Former Law Enforcement Officer Proven Defense by a Former Law Enforcement Officer Experienced and Focused winning Cases EXPERIENCED & FOCUSED WINNING CASES They Say Can’t Be Won Missouri Drunk Driving Attorney Missouri Drunk Driving Attorney

They Say Can’t Be Won

TRAVIS NOBLE, P.C.

Don’t trust just anyone with your DWI defense. Contact the law firm of Travis Noble, P.C., by e-mail or call us at 314-450-7849 or 866-794-0947 to schedule your free consultation with a St. Louis DWI lawyer to discover that you have more options than you imagined. We 8000 MARYLAND AVENUE, SUITEDiscover 350 accept all major credit cards, including Visa, MasterCard, and American Express.

ST. LOUIS, MO 63105 PHONE: 314-721-6040 Travis Noble, P.C. TOLL FREE:Suite 866-794-0947 8000 Maryland Avenue, 350 | St. Louis MO 63105 Phone: 314-721-6040 | Toll Free: 866-794-0947 The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely upon advertisements. This disclosure is required by rule of the Supreme Court of Missouri.

The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely upon advertisements. This disclosure is required by rule of the Supreme Court of Missoui.

riverfronttimes.com

june 13 - 19, 2018

RIVERFRONT TIMES

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Riverfront Times June 13, 2018  
Riverfront Times June 13, 2018  
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