Things to Get Excited About in Michigan Music

By: reed Heaton

Grey Matter x Nuclear Moms Split

This will be released physically at the Double Release House Show in Pinckney along with Storytime and others on March 5th.

It has been streaming for most of the new year, showing a good pairing between Lansing’s ska-core band, Grey Matter, and the more up front, two-step worthy, bass-heavy hardcore act, Nuclear Moms, from Columbus, OH.

It is a good release for a fan of punk or hardcore music that is looking for new places for the genre to go. 

Will McPeek plays keyboard for the band and said, "Our split with Nuclear Moms came out late this December, right before we went on tour together. Our side and theirs covers a very broad musical spectrum within just four songs. I think it is both of our best work so far. Check it out if you like fast-paced, unpredictable music. This show is going to be awesome. We have played with every one of these bands before. They are all great musicians and it is going to be a great time."

Grey Matter is especially interesting to me, because of how quickly they can alter the primal sound of their songs. At the their core, they are a ska-punk band, but they also add elements of heavier music, jazz, and even rap whenever they deem fit.

The vocals are raw and throaty, and the keyboard player adds a lot to the sound, especially with the more serious and melodic piano line at the end of “Knots.” I also really enjoy the saxophone solo in “Permafrost.”

Storytime’s Final EP out March 5th.

What catches my eye about this release is even though Storytime’s new EP is finished and set to be released on March 5th with the aforementioned Grey Matter, the release show is set to be their last for the Livingston County natives.

Nick Siep, guitar player said, “due to conflicting schedules and interests, this show will [also] be Storytime's last show.”

I am interested with what the grunge-punk band has to offer for its going away gift. I listened to their well-produced demos on bandcamp, and they show promise. Its musical energy is able to shine through in the mix, along with gritty but melodic vocals, in the same vein of many bands from the early 90’s.

“The EP is gritty and raw. We recorded most of it live as a full band, everyone playing at the same time. We wanted it to feel like a live show, for both the listener and us. We are really looking forward to the show on March 5th. It is a sweet line up and is going to be a ton of fun. It will also be our last show, so it is a little bitter sweet,” Siep said.

It is going to be sad to see them go, but Urban Geographer has learned they might not be completely gone. Keep an eye on them for future announcements.

Prima Vera’s “Floral Media” EP out February 9th.

This is a three-song follow up to the emo, indie act’s debut EP, The Seasons, and is interesting progression as the frontman, Bryan Iglesias, is beginning to move it from a more solo, acoustic act to a full band. 

The coolest thing here is the three songs on it are very stylistically different. There is the classically orchestrated rage-pop of the first track, the solo acoustic groover for a 2nd track, and finishing it up with the refined pop rock single, “Old TV’s and Memories.” Bryan has a knack for composition, and it shows here.

Urban Geographer is also hosting the Release Party for this EP as well this Friday, February 9th at the Majestic Café in Detroit, MI. The Native Age, Hot Mulligan, Woven Tangles and A Year in New York will also be playing the show.

Ellis’ Debut Full-Length (Date TBA).

They have not announced a release date for the album just yet, but did say they are shooting for a release in the fall.

They have been playing shows and working hard in on their IndieGoGo campaign, which will crowdfund their upcoming full-length album. They have raised almost 50 percent of their intended goal of $12,000.

If you know the band or like what you hear and want to hear more, donating even a small amount of money will make a huge difference for these guys. They are hardworking and have written nothing but quality material thus far, and I for one would like to see where they go next.

Hot Mulligan x Everyone Leaves Split (Release TBA).

Hot Mulligan announced a split with Everyone Leaves today, as well as a few shows supporting the release. No date has been confirmed yet for the release.

Check out the dates below and see when they are playing around you. I enjoyed seeing Everyone Leaves and Hot Mulligan last month in Flint, so I am excited about this news.  Chris Freeman sings and plays guitar for the band, and is also very excited about this year.

“We are going to try to tour a lot, we are writing and recording new music, we are improving our sound, and we think it is going to be a great year,” Freeman said.

Hot Mulligan x Everyone Lease Split Release Dates

  • March 12th – The Well Basement – South Bend, MI

  • March 13th – The Depot – Urbana, OH