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Rose Brown of Flooding

Nostalgia and the circle of life were on display as Flooding, Abandoncy, Midwestern, and The String & Return shared the Bottleneck stage.

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Podcast #588 is friendly AF thanks to cuts from Kids On A Crime Spree, Artsick, The Pulsebeats, Nah..., Jetstream Pony, Seablite, Nobody's Flowers, & Suneaters.

Podcast #587 returns to form with a bit of everything thanks to fanclubwallet, The Anydays, The Shebangs, Steve Conte, Ramones, Kursaal Flyers, The Roseline, & Frogpond.

Podcast #586 plays only the best from Too Much Rock's Top 40 Songs of 2021. Enjoy tracks from The Exbats, Dry Cleaning, Du Blonde, Har Mar Superstar, Death By Unga Bunga, Arab Strap, & Quivers.

Favorite Local Releases of 2021

Another year where I didn't see enough bands and definitely didn't buy enough local music. I don't like the outlook for 2022 much TBH, but I did like all of these releases from 2021. So, much love to the bands, labels, and everyone in KC scene for making these happen.

Top 10 Local Releases of 2021:
10. Monta at Odds Peak of Eternal Light (Record Machine)
 9. Witch Jail Ideations (self-released)

see the full list

top songs, best of, 2021 local
Top 40 Songs of 2021

This year we're going to count down my favorite songs Casey Kasem style — that's the top 40 for the kids out there. As always this list could change every day, but here is a good ranking of songs that I loved, want to hear again, and mean the most to me.

40 "Sing For Me" by Western Threads
A delightful indie shuffle with nice harmonies, smart guitar leads, and more venom than an entire Decide album.

see the full list

top songs, best of, 2021
Top 50 Albums of 2021

Ranking albums is so much harder than singles. Ultimately I can only say how much an album speaks to me — which is often quite mercurial. So here are 50 albums from 2021 that I found wonderful from top to bottom. My list is ordered, but otherwise presented without commentary.

50. Motorists Surrounded (Bobo Integral)
49. Pom Pom Squad Death of a Cheerleader (City Slang)

see the full list

top albums, best of, 2021
Damian Fisher of Abandoncy

Abandoncy, Better Friend, Good Morning Midnight, and Dreamist hit KC with all the colors of the DIY rainbow.

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Podcast #585 is the 2021 Christmas Spectacular featuring 24 festive delights from Grandaddy, Four Eyes, All Ashore!, Corvair, The Cleaners From Venus, Petrol Girls, Charley Bliss, Beach Bunny, Fox Teeth, Cloaker, David Newton & Thee Mighty Angels, the Popguns, The Photocopies, Boyracer, Alice Bag Band, Lisa Mychols & SUPER 8, Geoff Palmer, Kurt Baker, Nick Lowe and Los Straitjackets, Lisa Mychols, Cute Lepers, Ryan Allen, Crocodiles, & My Teenage Stride.

Kellen Julian of Anti-Feds

Punks and skins showed up in a big way for a Tuesday night gig at Minibar featuring Anti-Feds, The Uncouth, and Doldrums.

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Podcast #584 isn't quite convinced with the tracks from Palomino Blond, Pip Blom, Marissa Paternoster, Courtney Barnett, Stella Donnelly, Chime School, The Reds Pinks & Purples, & Lars Frederiksen.

Podcast #583 is thankful for Makthaverskan, Mink DeVille, The Jim Carroll Band, Stop Calling Me Frank, A Bunch Of Jerks, Lawmaker, & Mr. Golden Sun.

Ray Carlisle of Teenage Bottlerocket

Punk rock smashed KC as Teenage Bottlerocket, The Last Gang and Tightwire took over Record Bar.

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Joey Chiaramonte of Koyo

A four-flavored bill brought Koyo, Anxious, Oxford Remedy, and Perfume to the Record Bar stage for a Sunday night of hardcore and more.

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Matt Hamer of Mr. Golden Sun

Dulcet tones and intimate lyrics rang out as Mr. Golden Sun, The Hollows, and Daniel Gum performed at The Brick.

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Dylan Baldi of Cloud Nothings

Headliners Cloud Nothings and support act Mourning [A] BLKstar gave KC two tastes of Cleveland whether we felt like dancing or breaking things.

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Nick Lowe

Rock & roll statesmen Nick Lowe gave a rousing and lively performance backed by Los Straitjackets and supported by Paul Cebar.

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Podcast #582 digs for the gems finding paydirt with Aimee Mann, The Tubs, Nick Frater, Fur, Swansea Sound, L.A. Exes, Dan Vapid And The Cheats, & Arab Strap.

Sophie Emerson of The Cavves

Four scrappy bands played a disjointed show where no band or its fans crossed paths. Check out my photos and video of The Cavves, The Cracks, Major Matt Mason USA, and Oxford Remedy.

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Podcast #581 loses itself in long cuts from Arab Strap, The Acharis, Motrik, & Havukruunu.

Andrew Sallee of Namelessnumberheadman

Namlessnumberheadman celebrated the release of its newest album in a late-night affair with a few fans and some help from Black Light Animals and Heidi Lynne Gluck.

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Podcast #580 looks in the Halloween bag and pulls out treats from Dave Hause, Witch Jail, The Exbats, Jass, Julia Othmer, Katy Guillen & The Drive, & Shoestrings.

Ethan Gensurowsky of Enforced

7th Heaven served metal appetizers from Enforced and Inner Altar for the KC scene.

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Podcast #579 hangs out in garages and basements w/ The Airport 77s, Fortitude Valley, The Seams, The Shadracks, The Courettes, Teenage Cavegirl, Nature Boys, Bummer, & Brian Eno.

The Bad Ideas

On a busy KC night a few dozen fans braved the chill for The Bad Ideas, Polymer Mercies, North by North, and True Lions.

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Scout Gillett

Scout Gillett, Other Americans, and Belle & the Vertigo Waves played a diverse show proving

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Willie Jordan of Drugs & Attics

Late night debauchery has its home at Easy Inn and its fuel from Drugs & Attics, Colfax Speed Queen, & Wayne Pain & the Shit Stains.

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Aidan Noell & Ian Richard Devaney of Nation of Language

KC experienced an NYC-created time warp when the synth pop of Nation of Language and the post-punk of The Wants came to town.

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Podcast #578 plays Jekyll & Hyde w/ cuts from The Connells, TV Crime, Killer Hearts, Teenage Joans, Boy Scouts, Nightjacket, & Elevator Division.

Makayla Scott

Rain pushed the weekly Songbird Sessions indoors, approximating a cozy coffee shop that allowed Makayla Scott's tender songs and affable charm to thrive.

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Chris Stewart of Elevator Division

The clock turned back 20 years bringing Elevator Division and Namelessnumberheadman back to the stage.

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Podcast #577 scratches that itch w/ Motorists, The Peppermint Kicks, Dirty Fences, The Jolt, Chubby and the Gang, Mess, Oil Change, Daughn Gibson.

Makayla Scott of Blue False Indigo

There was nothing but sincerity as far as the eye could see as Blue False Indigo and Major Matt Mason USA played Velo Garage on 9/25.

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Letty Martinez of Fea

It was girls to the front when Fea and Bad Ideas played a midweek show at Minibar.

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Travis McKenzie of The Creepy Jingles

KC was wonderfully KC when a diverse bill of Creepy Jingles, Berwanger, and Violent Bear played the Rino on 9/17.

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Podcast #576 thinks everything is spooky and beautiful. And so do The Cramps, Spearmint, Star Collector, Life Model, Lloyd Cole and The Commotions, Ducks Ltd., & The Ophelias.

Phil Kinsley of Arson Class

Punk rock for a cause when Arson Class, a reunited Shotgun Jenny, and Here's to the Life played The Rino.

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Podcast #575 suggests you relax and leave everything to namelessnumberheadman, Dori Freeman, Daniel Romano's Outfit, The Fluorescents, Bad Bad Hats, Sorrows, Mom, & The Coathangers.

Dan Jones & the Squids

Dan Jones & his squids were joined by Of Tree for a low-stakes Friday night gig at The Ship.

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The Whiffs

Lawrence got lucky when The Whiffs brought in friends Dirty Fences, Mel Machete, & Criminal Kids for a night of topnotch rock & roll.

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Podcast #574 keeps it steady w/ help from Sleepers, Teenage Bottlerocket, The Bronx, Amyl and The Sniffers, Brent Windler, The Wannadies, & Violent Femmes.

Josh Snow of Le Grand

KC got a slice of normalcy when Le Grand, Via Luna, and New Obsessions played The RINO on 9/4.

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Podcast #573 wants to ensure you get enough vitamin punk w/ music from The Ashenden Papers, Kurt Baker, Control Freaks, The Bambies, Chubby and The Gang, The Jorge Arana Trio, Low, & Danko Jones.

Podcast #572 battles the summer heat w/ Sharp Class, Hurry, Lemonheads, Swansea Sound, UV-TV, Telethon, Turnstile, & Redder Moon.

Mike McCoy

A piecemeal bill consisting of Mike McCoy & Friends, Schwervon, and Mad Kings raced against oncoming storms and honored a lost member of the KC music scene.

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Podcast #571 plays bingo and records by Yum Yums, Boyracer, The Laughing Chimes, Guadalcanal Diary, Quicksand, Militarie Gun, Nonagon, & John Vanderslice.

Jorge Arana of Jorge Arana Trio

Jorge Arana Trio, Abandoncy, & Via Luna delivered the goods to the KC DIY set at Lemonade Park.

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The Black Maria Theater

Black Mariah Theater and Chase the Horseman soundtracked a perfect patio night on 8/13.

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Podcast #570 fires both barrels delivering hits from The Motorcycle Boy, Dany Laj and the Looks, The Sorels, The Dents, The Orange Peels, La Battue, The Umbrellas, & Monta at Odds.

Podcast #569 returns with help from Transvolta, Kursaal Flyers, Geoff Palmer, Guadalcanal Diary, Sloan, Descendents, The Jacklights, & Torres.

Stevie Cruz of Heels

A local bill of Heels, The Whiffs, and The Sluts rocked The Replay on 7/31.

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Podcast #568 is a stream of power pop w/ Tallies, Linda Ronstadt, The Seven and Six, The Finkers, Star Collector, Love Burns, The Connells, & Hipshot Killer.

Podcast #567 runs wild w/ Snapped Ankles, Quivers, Pale Lights, Kursaal Flyers, The Shang Hi Los, & Dry Cleaning.

Lacy Hopkins is Vanity Plates

Lacy Hopkins of Dreamgirl brought her solo project Vanity Plates to the Songbird Sessions.

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Idaho

The reconstituted Idaho came through KC with some help from The String and Return and Slights.

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Podcast #566 is a box of chocolates from The Go! Team, Spoilers, Divinyls, Kid Gulliver, The Mountain Goats, Pom Pom Squad, Lucy Dacus, & Toledo.

Jocelyn Nixon

The 7/7 Songbird Session featured the excellent songcraft of Jocelyn Nixon from Creepy Jingles.

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Griff Nelson of Chess Club

Chess Club prompted a return to dirty rock bars for Red Kate, Matthew Mulnix, Too Much Rock, and so many of their fans.

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The Black Mariah Theater

The Black Mariah Theater settled into a cozy corner of Afterword for two sets of bluesy, jazzy, and witchy mood music.

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Podcast #565 suggests you work on your tan w/ Cub Scout Bowling Pins, Tommy Ray!, The Cudas, The Plimsouls, Radio Days, Los Campesinos!, Kings Of Convenience, & Kursaal Flyers.

Daniel Gum

Songbird sessions welcomed Daniel Gum on 6/30 for two sets -- one featuring standout tracks from his debut album, and one of unreleased songs he plans to bring into the studio next month.

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Upcoming gigs I care about:
1/22 Monta at Odds @ Brick 1/21 Bowie Tribute @ recordBar 1/22 Bowie Tribute @ recordBar 1/24 Arson Class @ miniBar 1/27 Major Matt Mason @ RINO 1/28 Falling in Reverse @ Uptown 1/30 Sidestep @ Farewell 2/7 Whiffs @ Union Library 2/8 Devotchka @ recordBar 2/12 Sleigh Bells @ Truman 2/15 Erasure @ Uptown 2/19 Flooding @ Farewell 2/19 Lucy Dacus @ Liberty Hall 2/19 Bruce Dickinson (spoken) @ Uptown 2/22 Beach House @ Midland 2/23 Ghost @ Cable Dahmer Arena 2/23 TV Priest @ Bottleneck 2/24 Thelma and the Sleeze @ miniBar 2/25 Slash @ Midland 3/5 Frogpond @ Bottleneck 3/7 Parquet Courts @ Liberty Hall 3/8 Sheer Mag @ Uptown 3/9 Pears @ miniBar 3/11 Flogging Molly @ Truman 3/16 Deafheaven @ Granada 3/16 Choir Boy @ Farewell Transmission 3/17 Gel @ 22/32 3/19 Vitreous Humor @ Granada 3/20 Ophelias @ Replay