Chakras and Other Locals Celebrate New Releases

After raising funds through a Kickstarter campaign, Cincinnati rockers Chakras headed to California to record with one of the Rock world’s top producers, Joe Chiccarelli. Known for his extensive pro

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After raising funds through a Kickstarter campaign, Cincinnati rockers Chakras headed to California to record with one of the Rock world’s top producers, Joe Chiccarelli. Known for his extensive production and engineering work with artists like My Morning Jacket, U2, The Killers, The White Stripes and many others, Chiccarelli worked on songs with Chakras at Holy Grailien studios, the Ojai, Calif.-based facilities owned by 311’s S.A. Martinez.

The band worked on six songs during the 14-day session, and Chakras is releasing three of them (“Swagger,” “Cherish to Perish” and “Earthquakes Everywhere”) as a fantastic-sounding EP, Black Sunrise: The Ojai Sessions. The group hosts a release party for the EP Saturday at Southgate House Revival (111 E. Sixth St., Newport, Ky., southgatehouse.com). Area bands Lovecrush88 and Zebras in Public (which recently debuted its new music video, “John Doe,” on vevo.com), along with Louisville, Ky.’s Signal the Revolution, also perform at the 8:30 p.m. show. Admission is $5.

For more Chakras, visit chakrasband.com.

• Local musician Mark Becknell has been primarily known as a drummer/percussionist and has worked with a wide range of local acts, including Frontier Folk Nebraska, Queen City Silver Stars, Chardez, Terminal Union and Josh Eagle and The Harvest City. But Becknell is also an excellent singer/songwriter, as recently showcased on his debut full-length solo album, Like the Vine.

The recording (which is available starting this weekend for streaming/purchase at markbecknell.bandcamp.com) highlights Becknell’s impressive Folk/Americana songwriting, which is given a uniquely ethereal vibe on the album that suggests a collaboration with super-producer Daniel Lanois would be a perfect fit. Assisting on the recording are bassist Tommy Cappel (who also co-produced the full-length with Becknell), Dusty Bryant (piano/organ), Jeremy Smart (electric guitar) and singer/songwriter David Faul, who plays acoustic guitar and harmonica on a couple of tracks.

Becknell and the musicians who helped him record the album present a special all-ages afternoon release party Sunday at Newport’s Southgate House Revival. Doors open at 3 p.m. and music starts at 4 p.m. Tickets are $10 in advance (through southgatehouse.com) or $12 at the door and include a copy of Like the Vine.

You can find out more about Becknell and his myriad projects at markbecknell.blogspot.com.

• Local Pop Punk-turned-Indie Pop project Kevin and the Octaves (which features the core duo of Eric Tuffendsam and Jamie Mandel) has put out several releases since 2008, performing fleshed-out, full-band live shows on rare occasions. The Octaves’ releases have included rewired versions of Classical songs and holiday classics, as well as originals that are loaded with sharp, instantly catchy hooks. Since its inception, the Octaves’ music has scored numerous placements in TV shows (The Good Wife, Shameless, Burn Notice) and film trailers (Jackass 3D, Knocked Up, Chicken Little).

The Octaves’ latest effort, a full-length titled Young Again, was released on iTunes (you can also find it on Spotify) this past spring and once again features songs that will burrow into your cranium after one listen.

Tuffendsam and Mandel, along with full-band Octaves Mike and Nick Heffron (also members of local group Nevele), play a rare live show in honor of Young Again’s release Saturday at MOTR Pub (1345 Main St., Over-the-Rhine, motrpub.com). The free, 10 p.m. show also features a performance by Cincinnati AltRock band Tag.

For more on Kevin and the Octaves, visit kevinandtheoctaves.com.

• In April, Cincinnati Indie Pop/Rock group Coconut Milk released its superb sophomore EP, We’re Sorry. This Friday when the band performs at Fountain Square for the free, 7 p.m. MidPoint Indie Summer series, Coconut Milk will be unveiling a different kind of release — a children’s book.

The book, titled Terry and Lorna’s Pitter-Puttering New Car, was written by Coconut Milk bassist Paul O’Moore and features artwork by Chris Baker (who has provided the art for the both of the band’s EP releases). The project also includes an accompanying CD of “slow songs and lullabies” performed by members of Coconut Milk. 

For more on the Indie Summer show, visit myfountainsquare.com. Find more on Coconut Milk at facebook.com/coconutmilkband.


CONTACT MIKE BREEN: [email protected]

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