Cincy Psych Rock Band Pop Empire Returns with New 'Novena' Album

Ahead of North American tour dates, the trio celebrates its first full-length release in five years this weekend at Northside Tavern

click to enlarge Pop Empire - Photo: Ryan Back
Photo: Ryan Back
Pop Empire
The superb Cincinnati Indie Rock trio Pop Empire (now in its 10th year as a band) returns this week with Novena, its first full-length album since 2014’s excellent Future Blues.

Album tracks like “Sister Chaos” (which premiered yesterday via Ghettoblaster), “Black Wine” and “For Maggie” (which premiered in late June on Midwest Action) wonderfully showcase the group’s mesmerizing Psych Rock sound, in which you can hear reminders of trippy acts from a variety of eras — from the Velvet Underground, T. Rex and early Pink Floyd through contemporary artists like The Black Angels, Devendra Banhart and beyond.

Novena — which releases this Saturday, July 27 — is the first recording to feature Pop Empire’s current lineup, in which singer/bassist (and founding member) Henry Wilson is joined by guitarist Katrina Eresman and drummer Jake Langknecht. The album will be available on major streaming platforms, as well as through

The band is currently finalizing dates for a planned September tour through the Midwest, East Coast and parts of Canada. Local Pop Empire fans can catch the trio at its album release party this Saturday at Northside Tavern (4163 Hamilton Ave., Northside, The free 9 p.m. show will also feature performances by Illinois’ The Funs and fellow local Dreamgaze greats Soften.

For more on Pop Empire, visit

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