ALBUM REVIEW: Sun&Stone – Elephant’s Eye

by Ben Chambers

Band: Sun & Stone

Album: Elephants Eye (2016)

Genre: Psychedelic / Blues / Rock / Progressive / Experimental
City: Wichita, Ks
Stand Out Track(s): Dooms A Daisy / Dagger Doom And Doubt

Something that impresses me about this band is how well they work together. Nothing seems to overpower the rest of the band. Each instrument is busy in its own way but its never too much. There is something I’ve noticed with bands, there is always the conflict of ego. For example: the bass is too loud/busy and takes away from the guitar, or the guitar is constantly trying to overpower the singer etc., but i don’t hear any of that at all. Yet they all seem to add their own voice. I find myself engulfed and completely lost inside the music. There is so much going on, without being too much.
Their opening track “Dooms A Daisy” has a very Tool-esq vibe to it, but also completely different. The percussion is fantastic. Tasty fills, but not to symbol-y. The verse features mostly drums and bass, but there is a shaker as well – a small but perfect touch. In Daggers Doom And Doubt there is a small chime and harmonica (it might be a guitar effect) that is so subtle, but done so perfectly, but then the whole band sustains for a brief moment with such a vibrant and full sound. Bliss. Additional tambourine in certain areas.

Often times i feel blues can be too repetitive, but this is such a uniquely different spin with a psychedelic sound and Progressive outline, with countless percussion subtleties; it never gets too heavy or fast. They keep a tempo that makes it easy to listen to, but “get-into-it” enough that the songs builds and climaxes.

The artwork is also extremely well done. makes me think of Cowboy Beebop or Trigun (anime) i can listen to the whole album and visualize the artwork telling me a story, like directing a music video in your head.

Now Available:
Spektrum Muzik
Sun&Stone Bandcamp

Catch Sun&Stone live at Wichita Psych Fest 2016!

#allagesict

Maybe it was always there right beneath the surface, maybe it was just disconnected, but the all ages scene in ICT is undoubtedly here, and what’s coming out of it completely rules. Last night the Ryan Stoldt of Twin CitiesWalnut Street Gallery, hosted their first event in seven years. In 2007 the gallery / event space hosted both Murder By Death and Ian Mackaye’s The Evens. So what happened? Apparently, no one asked to do shows there in all that time. Everyone got comfortable doing shows at bars, and everyone under 21 during that time missed out on several hundred extraordinary and inspiring shows.

So what?

So here’s the thing. Music, like any art, suffers in a vacuum. If you haven’t stood toe-to-toe with your hero, seen her equipment, felt the vibration coming from the amps, witnessed the emotion in every cell of the band’s collective being while they play the song that means so much to YOU, and then talked to them after the show–you haven’t had the experience that drives so many of us into our basements and garages every night to obsessively do the work to find the sound that means so much to US. Put it this way–its super hard to make excellent music without first witnessing excellent music. And without a place to play your music in front of friends and strangers, the whole thing gets a different feel. And not a good one. Things fizzle out, fade. And thats what happened. Thats what shouldn’t happen in Wichita anymore.

Thanks to a grip of brave souls risking the wrath of cops and putting on house shows, to a handful of shops like The Donut Whole and R Coffee House allowing people to get in there and share what they have to share and experience the magic of live music, something is starting to happen. The groundswell is coming back. All ages means something in ICT. There are now a shitload of young bands that totally rip that you should go see. Does your band play exclusively bars? Change that! Find a band that can’t play a bar and ask them to play a show, and ask them where they want to do it. Teach them what you know about gear, promotion, making records. Invite them into your studio to record, collaborate with them. This is a community, embrace it. Watch it grow. Have fun.

See you at the show.

#allagesict

The Donut Whole
Rock Island Live
Mead’s Corner
WSU Shift Space Gallery
Walnut Street Gallery
R Coffee House
The Workroom
South Lulu Temple of Doom
Lime Green Scream
Tomb of Toons
Fairview Palace
Crown Uptown
The Cotillon

Did I miss one? Let me know-leave it in the comments below!

allAgesBanner

ICT FEST 2015 SCHEDULE

WEDNESDAY SEP 2 PRE-PARTY @ BARLEYCORNS – 9:30PM – FREE!!
Maria Elena
Mystery Blood
Iron Octomoms

THURSDAY SEP 3 AFTER-PARTY @ BARLEYCORNS – 10:30PM – FREE!!
Photonwives
Golden Living Room
Twin Cities

FRIDAY SEP 5 AFTER-PARTY @ KIRBY’S BEER STORE – 10:30PM – FREE!!
Hosmer
Bluehealer(KC)

THURSDAY
5:30pm Mammoth
6pm Shefford
6:30pm Yellow King
7pm Darjeeling
7:30pm Raunchy Dead
8pm Approach
8:30pm 69noses
9pm Dead Shakes
9:30pm Filius Sol
10pm Postboy
10:30pm Vehicles

FRIDAY
5pm Semiotic Weapons
5:3pm Evasive Flowers
6pm Godhat
6:30pm Obsidian Sword
7pm Roachblunt
7:30pm The Great Plains
8pm CJ Boyd
8:30pm Aseethe
9pm Knifewound
9:30pm Living Ghost
10pm Major Games
10:30pm Kill Vargas
11pm Varma Cross
11:30pm mr. and the mrs.
12pm World Palestine

SATURDAY
5:3pm Aksel Henderson
6pm Animal Parade
6:30pm Bluehealer(KC)
7pm Daddyos
7:30pm Domestic Drone
8pm Young Readers
8:30pm Lewelheds
9pm Lich
9:30pm Ebony Tusks (KC)
10pm Fairness
10:30pm Who and the Fucks
11pm New Wave Hookers
11:30pm Bummer
12pm DEAD SHAKES (TULSA)

So you want to book a show in Wichita?

So you want to book a show in Wichita? Its pretty easy if you make sure you cover all the bases. Lineup, promotion, and location are your primary concerns. If you have the work done three weeks before the show, you can use the time leading up to it to do word of mouth promotion and relax knowing the show will go well.

1.) Lineup
The best possible lineup will be two local bands and one touring band with the touring band always playing second. Find two local bands with friends that will would be into both the touring band and the other local bands’ jams, and ideally find two locals with draws from different groups of people. This is how you will attract 60% of your crowd.

2.) Promotion
Promotion gets you the other 40% of possible attendees. The best possible promotion is to only book shows that you are extra-stoked to be booking. If you aren’t that into the band, its more than likely that no one you know will be either.

Aside from that, you need to make sure you get the word out through all the channels available. These include:

a.) A Facebook event with band names, venue location, date, door cost, age restriction, link to music / videos, and some sort of description about the band. This can be four paragraphs or one colorful adjective.

Make sure to send the event link to all the local band members in a group message to peer pressure them into inviting all of their friends. You should share the event on any Facebook group for local music you can find, as well as repeatedly on your own Facebook page, twitter feed, etc. Also let ICT FEST know about it and we’ll share it on our Facebook and Twitter feeds, because if you are booking shows we like you a lot.

b.) Flyers and Handbills. Don’t ever not make flyers or hand out handbills (into actual hands, not lying on a shelf in a coffee shop) unless you want no one to come to your show. If you are ever at a show and you find yourself whining about how no one is there, please ask yourself, did I hand out handbills into 100-200 hands? If your answer is no, then you should shut up and do a better job next time.

c.) Word of mouth. This is the most important and why you should only book bands that you personally know are 1000% dope. You need to tell everyone you know in person that they should come to this show, because you really believe that their life will be at least a little bit more rad if they are there.

3.)Location
Every show has a proper venue. This is determined by day of the week and what bands are playing. If you are booking everyones’ favorite band in the world, don’t book it at a house show. If you want young people to come to the a show with a band playing their first tour, book a house show. Always try to book a space that will feel full with whatever number of people come. At a Kirby’s show or house show, if you get 20 people out the band will feel like champs. That same number at a larger venue like Barleycorns or Rock Island will feel empty, which does not often equate to fun.

Wherever you pick, make sure you know when load in is, when set times are, who is in charge, what the money situation is, and what the size / quality / condition of the pa is. If you are doing a house show do NOT depend on them having a pa, because they definetly don’t have a pa.

Theres a lot more to learn, and I’ll write more posts down the road with more detail on all these topics, but if you follow these basic steps and actually give a shit you will know that no matter how the show goes down you did everything you could to make it as easy and fun as possible, which is a good feeling. The main thing is to always have fun. No matter the turnout, no matter anything, just keep have fun and things will go well. Its only a bummer when you decide it is.