Live Music Picks: Dec. 27-Jan .2 | Music Picks | Salt Lake City Weekly

Live Music Picks: Dec. 27-Jan .2 

Marmalade Chill, SuperBubble, The Violet Temper, The Proper Way, and more

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Marmalade Chill

It's two days after Christmas. Your mind is probably mush, what with all the eggnog and ham and endless sweet treats going down your gullet. The kids are out of school and still running wild with all their new toys. A weekend of cleaning and commiserating for New Year's Eve is still ahead. But it's only Thursday, and you need a break. A tasty meal that wasn't cooked in your own messy kitchen. Drinks served just for you—not for the entire family. And soft, soothing music in which you can drown your sorrows. Luckily, Gracie's has just the thing for you with its Thursday night Dinner and a Show, this week featuring longtime local favorites Marmalade Chill, the acoustic version of raucous party band Marmalade Hill. Staples in the community for more than two decades, they specialize in mash-ups of popular rock and pop songs spanning the decades from the 1960s to the current day. Get out of the house and soothe your over-stressed post-holiday soul with Marmalade Chill—you won't regret it. (Nick McGregor) Gracie's, 326 S. West Temple, 7 p.m., free, 21+,

  • Peace of Light Photography

FRIDAY 12/28
SuperBubble, The Fingers, Bad Donkey, Year of the Dog

A live show by local funk standouts SuperBubble is always a mind-bending, consciousness-expanding good time, and those vibes will be in extra supply on the first night of a four-day New Year's Eve weekend. With bassist, lead vocalist and loop connoisseur Brandon "B" Barker conducting these jazz-influenced purveyors of deep grooves, everyone in the band gets their time to shine: Rob Drayna and Max Webb on guitars, Tim Ouburg on organ, Wyatt Richards on drums, Dan Muir on percussion, Dave Terran on trumpet and Sterling Wootton on saxophone. Consider them a local version of Tower of Power, or a 21st-century version of the Funkadelic collective—impressive praise, since they just got together in 2016 and released their debut self-titled EP last summer. Expect more of the flavors from that record here at The Royal: slippery guitar solos, transmogrifying instrumentals, jam-band soul, explosive bursts of brass and a unifying thread of funked-up positivity. (NM) The Royal, 4760 S. 900 East, 8 p.m., 21+,

click to enlarge TAYLOR BONIN
  • Taylor Bonin

Sammy Brue & Friends, Timmy the Teeth, Branson Anderson

Utah native Sammy Brue is just a kid. "This next song I wrote in detention," the 17-year-old quipped during a recent TEDx performance. But don't let his age fool you: For someone so young, he's got a powerful—and insightful—voice. Brue started writing songs when he was 10; he was featured in Rolling Stone when he was 14. "It's nearly impossible not to think of a young Bob Dylan discovering Woody Guthrie," noted the article, which also called him an "Americana prodigy." The singer-songwriter cites both Dylan and Guthrie as foundational influences, while YouTube commenters compare him to rock 'n' roll greats like Kurt Cobain and John Lennon, as well as more contemporary singer-songwriters like Kurt Vile. Indeed, Brue's music owes a great debt to his forebears in the confessional songwriting arena, but he's got a voice all of his own, and between the ages of 10 and 17 he released a trio of EPs to prove it. "The first EP was my Woody Guthrie phase," Brue says on his website. "The second I recorded in my laundry room, and it was more like what I'm doing now. The third was me producing it and adding kick drum and tambourine and bass—I think that's where I really found myself." Brue shows no signs of stopping on his 2018 debut album with New West Records, I Am Nice. Produced by Ben Tanner and John Paul White of Alabama Shakes and Civil Wars, respectively, the 12-song album features rollicking guitar, pleasing folk melodies and Brue's reedy, pleading, distinctive voice. Brue puts on a pre-New Year's party with support from local folk favorites Timmy the Teeth and Branson Anderson—an intimate show you won't want to miss. (Naomi Clegg) Kilby Court, 748 W. Kilby Court, 7 p.m., $8 presale; $10 day of show, all ages,

click to enlarge CRYSTAL PUCKETT
  • Crystal Puckett

SUNDAY 12/30
The Violet Temper, Lightspeed Bus, Lube

The best things in life come in pairs. Think about it. Chocolate and vanilla, Jack and Meg White—and Salt Lake City's own The Violet Temper. Some might not recognize the name, but the band's drummer, Lindsay Heath, is imminently familiar. No stranger to the indie rock spotlight, the multi-instrumentalist has appeared as a soloist and with ambient two-piece project Strawberry Tongue. Heath released her solo album Holy Medicine in 2014, featuring guitarist and jazzcore favorite Cache Tolman. So it made sense when she teamed up with Tolman early this year to start their journey into the gritty doom rock sound that has become The Violet Temper's signature. Born to perform, Heath started her journey as a musician early, jamming as a teenager, while Tolman grew to underground fame throughout the '90s into the early 2000s with post-hardcore favorites Iceburn. The kind of music The Violet Temper creates is hard to put into words, but imagine if The Brian Jonestown Massacre had a love child with Smashing Pumpkins' Billy Corgan. The astral synthesizers, hard-hitting splashes of Heath's drums and Tolman's distorted vocals all wrap up the package that presents itself as "The Time Is Now" and showcases what the two are capable of. Making this night even more exciting is the fact that, although Heath and Tolman have released dozens of albums separately, this marks their first joint release of their self-titled album, The Violet Temper. Hitting up the stage with Heath and Tolman are local three-piece Lightspeed Bus and Lube, which wants to work an "exorcism for your ears." Come for that and stay for the party. (Rachelle Fernandez) The Urban Lounge, 241 S. 500 East, 8 p.m., 21+, free,

  • Rick Danger Photography

MONDAY 12/31
The Proper Way

May we suggest a proper celebration of New Year's Eve? No, we're not being prudish, but we do recommend an intimate way to usher in 2019 without madness or mayhem. Ogden band The Proper Way channels vintage Americana by tapping tradition within a contemporary context. Call out requests and share the comfortable confines of Park City's Silver Star Café while being entertained all evening by performers who are only too happy to oblige. Scott Rogers and Shane Osguthorpe, the band's founders and principals, know a good tune when they hear one, the main reason why their new album, the aptly titled Ain't No Good Thing Ever Dies, resonates so well. Billed as a cover compilation of relatively obscure songs by Bob Dylan and Tom Waits, it's conveyed with an easy accessibility that eschews the gruff and raspy vocals that originally accompanied the material. The men teamed with singer Carrie Myers to make the melodies shine in ways they often didn't before. "Virtually everyone agrees that Dylan and Waits are two of the greatest songwriters ever," Osguthorpe explained. "But the rawness of their vocals can make it tough for some people to find an entry point to their work." Problem solved. Consider it appropriate that The Proper Way rings in the new year by honoring the past and pushing it forward to the future. If you miss the band on this final night of 2018, you can always catch them at Legends Bar & Grill on Wednesday, Jan. 2, to celebrate 2019. (Lee Zimmerman) Silver Star Café, 1825 Three Kings Drive, Park City, 8 p.m., 21+,

click to enlarge KATHRYN HAYES
  • Kathryn Hayes

MONDAY 12/31

Frankly, you'd be hard pressed to come up with a better band with which to ring in the New Year than the Los Angeles-based outfit Orgone. A stirring blend of old-school soul, funk and R&B, this steadfast ensemble tours relentlessly, drawing on such indelible influences as Funkadelic, Bernie Worrell, The Meters, Aretha Franklin, Betty Wright, Prince and Booker T & The MGs. It's a diverse spectrum to be sure, but Orgone finds a common bond in dense but danceable rhythms, versatility, vitality and sheer exhilaration. Although an instrumental tour de force, they also possess a formidable singer and frontwoman in Adryon de León. Consequently, their latest effort—Reasons, recorded in the secluded realms of Joshua Tree in Southern California's desert—tempers their verbosity with a reflective streak, born from the turmoil that's descended on the nation since the 2016 election. "We got fooled by the masterpiece/ We're part of his mastery/ I'm blind but I'm seeing things/ Looking for the light in me," de León sings, attempting to find meaning in the mayhem. Still, Orgone's is far from a pessimistic perspective. New Year's Eve is a time to peer forward and put the past behind us, and given their celebratory stance and ability to generate fond musical memories, Orgone offers the ideal opportunity to party with real purpose. (Lee Zimmerman) The Commonwealth Room, 195 W. Commonwealth Ave., 9 p.m., $40-$65, 21+,

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Lee Zimmerman

Lee Zimmerman

An accomplished writer, blogger and reviewer, Zimmerman contributes to several local and national publications, including No Depression, Paste, Relix and Goldmine. The music obsessive says he owns too many albums to count and numerous instruments he’s yet to learn.

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