Sault Michigan's had a lot of news lately, and that trend continues this morning with this post full of news and notes from across the river! We've got the latest news from a local metal project, all of the latest details (including an early lineup) for a major upcoming concert festival, and leading things off, some LOCAL CONCERT ALERTS, so here's what you need to know!
Marquette hard rock quartet Nudge are finally coming back to Sault Michigan for a pair of concerts next weekend! These talented local favourites will return to The Satisfied Frog for their first local shows in almost six months on May 4th and 5th, in what should be a solid weekend of hard rocking covers! Notably, these shows will be Nudge's first local stops since drummer Eric Schlumpf left the band in December, having been twice replaced since then, so welcome new drummer Jed Thibeault to the Nudge fold next weekend! As well, the band will have some new merchandise for sale, and frontman Danzo McCracken will bring his acoustic solo concert back to The Frog tomorrow night as well, so keep that in mind! Admission should be free for both of next weekend's shows, you must be 21 to attend either, and there'll be 10:00 PM start times. For more details, visit the official Facebook event page! Nudge were almost last seen in February at The Frog, but those dates were later moved to Gladstone, so if you've been missing Nudge's prolific and entertaining hard rock covers, you know when and where to be! They'll be sure to rock the house and impress their local fanbase, so circle the return of Nudge on your calendars if you're across the river!
Next up, the lineup for this year's second annual LemmaFest has been announced! The festival in memory of late Dondee Lanes employee Michael Lemma now has a full lineup set for the July 23rd festival outside of the Dondee, and though I'm sure it's subject to change (last year's changed a lot beforehand), there's a solid lineup of veterans from last year and some new bands and talent, so here's who to look out for on the current schedule! The festival will open at 12:00 PM with Brimley metal quartet Half A Man in their first live concert appearance in 13 months, and their first with their current lineup! They were tentatively lined up for last year's event at one point, but with a hard hitting metal sound a Lemma tribute song in their setlist, they'll be the perfect band to open LemmaFest on June 23rd! They'll be followed by the new local acoustic quartet The London Gentlemen at 1:30 PM, who are comprised of Fallen Heroes' members Mike Russo & Steve Sivret on vocals & guitar and Trail's End bandmates Kyle Beaumont & Jake LaLonde on bass & drums. You may recognize Mike & Steve alone from their set with Fallen Heroes at last year's LemmaFest, but the presence of a fuller lineup (and Nixxon Dixxon alumni) shouldn't indicate a radically different sound from Fallen Heroes, so expect some proficient indie rock covers from these guys!
Four straight bands from last year's LemmaFest will follow The London Gentlemen on June 23rd, those being sporadically seen local metal trio Scofflaw at 3:00 PM, local hard rock quartet Powerslug (who were known as River Witch last year) at 4:30 PM, the page and media-less rock band known as Bucksaw (featuring Blind Baby alum Bill Ogston) at 6:00 PM, and Munising hardcore metal quintet Infathom (this year's only band from outside the Sault Michigan area) at 7:30 PM. It's great to see these bands back for more LemmaFest action this year, and in most cases, it's been many months since they've played a publically announced concert locally so this is as good a time as any for them to rock the area! The outdoor portion will end with new local cover rock quartet Chump Change (fronted by 2PumpChump's Terry Talentino from last year's LemmaFest) at 9:00 PM, while one more band from last year (classic rock cover trio The Hixx) will be on at the exact same time inside the Dondee to close out the night. Remember that this lineup is subject to change, and bands & times could change for varying reasons, so stay tuned to LemmaFest pages and the SMS for updates, and for more details, check out the above links and the brand new Facebook event page!
This sounds like a very solid lineup of familiar and new bands from the area, and if you attended last year's LemmaFest, it should be just as entertaining! Note that the band total is 8 rather than 10 from last year, but this does likely give each band slightly longer sets, so that works out! Also, for trivia sake, note that 4 musicians (Barney Gravelle, Ivan Schliska, Dillion Semasky, and Jason VanLuven) are all in two of the bands this year, if returning band lineups are the same, which is awesome to see their hard work for in Mike's memory! There will be food, drink specials, and raffles at this year's event, and though official sources haven't confirmed age limits or admission costs yet, note that last year's LemmaFest was all ages with $10 admission. Also, a fundraising event/band camp will be held on May 29th at the Taco Bell in Sault Michigan with part of the proceeds going to LemmaFest and the cause, so click here for info on that evening's event! This is all shaping up well for this year's event for sure, so stay tuned for more updates as they roll in, and go honour Mike Lemma's memory with some great music on June 23rd at the Dondee!
And finally, here's some more recent updates from local classical metal band Theatre of Night! First off, they have officially confirmed that German musician Gaby Koss is their new singer for the project, and she'll be featured in a re-release of their debut album "Christmas Night" later this year, along with an additional release projected to come out by early next year. I'm not overly familiar with her work, but she has experience in both opera and metal settings, and she has a beautiful voice for sure, so click here to hear some of her past work! Among other recent news: A new instrumental song named "Dreams of Winter Night" was posted onto the band's Reverbnation page, which has a nice epic orchestral feel, and I recently heard from keyboardist Craig Harrison that their planned American patriotic-themed album is only planned to be finished in May, not released that quickly. No matter what though, I'm anticipating their next work, as they're definitely a unique band in the local scene, and I'm a sucker for orchestral influences in metal, so fingers crossed more updated and material come out soon! Check the above links for more, and stay tuned hopefully by this weekend for my review of End of Existence's debut album!
That's all for now, but stay tuned for weekend concert previews later tonight, and our (delayed) Saultites In Out Of Town Bands Profile TOMORROW! Thanks everyone!