Ghosts of the Kodiak, Trees on Mars, Daily & Vincent

By Free Times
Wednesday, January 1, 2014
Ghosts of the Kodiak play New Brookland Tavern on Thursday. Courtesy photo

Wednesday 1

Silent Planet — Silent Planet generally isn’t — the band largely treads in grayscale metalcore, buttressing its furiously agile scalar runs with thudding drums and heavy dissonant chords, and balancing its caustic screams with impassioned emo-vocal wails. But, sometimes, it is: The bridges of the Los Angeles sextet’s songs bleed through the edges, receding into retiring — and equally black-and-white — post-rock panoramas. It’s nothing new — think Pianos Become the Teeth, but with more shredding — but Silent Planet scores by being tighter and smarter (its songs reference Flannery O’Conner, Daphne Du Maurier and German philosopher Martin Buber) than most of its contemporaries. With Me and the Trinity, Skyburner, Definitely a First. Patrick Wall
New Brookland Tavern: 7:30 p.m., $5 ($8 under 21); 791-4413,

Thursday 2

Ghosts of the Kodiak — Ghosts of the Kodiak is a band that tackles what it is to be human. Last April’s We Still Have Fears Inside Ourselves was the downer, loosely written around the concepts of disappointment, fear and hope; the Lifting Up the Ceilings EP, which the band dropped in December but celebrates the release of tonight, is about how people cope with those complex emotions. The band, whose members are split between Clemson, Charlotte and London, hews toward the mellifluous but massive indie-rock sound popularized by the Favorite Gentlemen crew (see: All Get Out, Manchester Orchestra) and its friendlies (see: Colour Revolt), its chiming guitars mirroring vocalist Caleb Smith’s emotive melodies. And, like those bands, Ghosts of the Kodiak tends to be wordy, but those words are chosen well — high-minded but never preachy. Patrick Wall
New Brookland Tavern: 7:30 p.m., $5 ($8 under 21); 791-4413,

Friday 3

Decadence — Decadence has been plying its radio-ready alt-rock from its Newberry home base since 2007. It’s opened for Filter, Smile Empty Soul and other alt-metal favorites; its own alt-metal owes a debt to Breaking Benjamin and Stonesour. Still, Decadence has never reached the critical mass of some of its similar-sounding local contemporaries. More than a few of those bands, though, have flamed out, while Decadence carries on, all the while honing its tuneful, commercial radio-rock to a fine point and winnowing away its rough edges. And there’s something to be said for longevity. Patrick Wall
New Brookland Tavern: 8:30 p.m., $5 ($8 under 21); 791-4413,

Saturday 4

Cover of Afternoon, Mike Mewborne — Maybe it’s nature versus nurture. Cover of Afternoon and The Lovely Few share family ties: Reid Mewborne’s drumming anchors Cover of Afternoon’s emotive alt-rock, which is built for modern rock radio but supersedes it, placing melody and movement on par with tightly wound thrashing. Mike Mewborne handles most of the moving parts in the more delicate The Lovely Few — writing, singing, arranging, programming and playing myriad instruments (including, yes, drums) in the fey and fetching electro-pop band, which is currently working on Gemini, the latest in its space-themed records. (Mike Mewborne performs solo tonight.) The bands are disparate, yes, but demonstrate the versatility and variety in Columbia’s music scene — and the Mewborne family. With One More Hero, Mybrother Mysister. Patrick Wall
New Brookland Tavern: 8 p.m., $5 ($8 under 21); 791-4413,

Trees on Mars — I remember, in my high school and college-radio days, following Web 1.0 rabbit holes down to the same termini, hunts inevitably ending with bands like Nation of Ulysses, Drive Like Jehu and Rodan. Another such band: the legendary (and legendarily cranky) math-rock outfit Don Caballero, which wrote all-instrumental songs with snaking guitar lines and odd meters and stop-on-a-dime shifts and skull-crushing grooves and then gave those songs really funny names. (See: “Bears See Things Pretty Much The Way They Are”; “You Drink a Lot of Coffee for a Teenager.”) New-ish local quarter Trees on Mars operates in the same idiom, its songs (like the darting “Hey Man, That’s Not Cool”) piling riff on top of riff and connecting them in interesting and neck-snapping ways. Hey, man — this is cool. You Me and Us, a snarling punk band that seems to have been quiet for a while, headlines; Brigades, a slick local quintet comprised of local pop-punk vets that bridges pop-punk and hardcore, and Lestro, a new-ish punk outfit, provide direct support. Patrick Wall
Art Bar: 8 p.m,. $5; 929-0198,

Sunday 5

Dailey & Vincent — Jamie Dailey was a sideman in Doyle Lawson’s renowned Quicksilver ensemble and Darrin Vincent performed with Ricky Skaggs’ celebrated Kentucky Thunder outfit before the two teamed up in 2007. Quickly — and probably unexpectedly — the duo became stars in the bluegrass world, winning the International Bluegrass Music Association’s Entertainer of the Year award three years in a row. But its biggest accomplishment might be its Grammy nods; Dailey and Vincent have been nominated for Best Country Performance (for “Elizabeth,” from 2011’s Dailey & Vincey Sing the Statler Brothers) and Best Bluegrass Album (in 2013, for The Gospel Side of Dailey & Vincent). The nods speak to Dailey and Vincent’s ability to deftly make bluegrass relevant to a wide audience. They do so, of course, by playing bluegrass music really, really well. Patrick Wall
Newberry Opera House: 3 p.m., $35; 803-276-6264,

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