After taking a listen to their new tracks, it's obvious that Florida transplant City of Ships is ready to crush Richmond with its progressive metal. Two songs can be found on a split LP with Souvenir's Young America and four on the band's own limited-edition EP. After their East Coast tour wraps up, they'll start up a tour of the Midwest.
The CURE concert fundraiser on March 29 to benefit cancer research will wrap up a month-long art exhibition at The Camel. Cover band Brown Sabbath, along with jazzy outfits Modern Groove Syndicate and Boots of Leather, will help the CURE Foundation fund research grants for graduate students engaged in cutting-edge oncology work.
For the last three years, Gallery5 and RVA Magazine have helped support the resurgence of Richmond's art and music scenes. Big band Fight the Big Bull, pop maestros Prabir & the Substitutes, California vaudeville duo Vermillion Lies, Reinhold and the Soulpower DJs will serenade them at First Friday, April 4. A super-secret-surprise guest will be announced soon.
Musicians for Mitochondrial Awareness is throwing its first benefit concert April 19 at the Capital Ale House. The lineup includes jam-rockers Moossa, reggae outfit Crucial Elements and singer-songwriters William Walter and Tucker Rogers. All proceeds are going to the United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation in the name of John Moossa's 12-year-old niece, Emmy Jurek. Moossa will release its new album, "Route 17," a month later.
No one can say sweaty punks Channel 43 aren't hardworking. Their third album has taken a year to record at Black Iris Studios and is produced by Justin Bailey (Submerge, Eons). "The final result," guitarist Mike Sorvino reports, "is that some of the songs have turned out better than when we started." "Cold Day in Purgatory" is up in New York getting mastered by the famous Alan Douches (Mastodon, Sepultura) and will soon be pressed into vinyl by Hard Knox Records.
After several lineup changes, members of the Reserve say they're finally headed in the right direction. Give 'em credit, though. Their sound is straight from the early-'80s heyday of punk, while everyone in the band was born after 1987. They released their new eight-song EP, "Freedom," recorded at Blunt Logic Records, March 16.
Equal parts pop and garage rock, Hot Lava will release its first full-length of jams called "Lavalogy" this month.
The National will host the March 29 homecoming of noise-rock powerhouse Hex Machine, which is on a national tour with Clutch and Murder By Death.
Sometimes it's best to do it yourself. Andrew Godfrey's heavy-rock project Navaeh is recording in his Quake Studios; the new material will be released on his Quake Records; and he's handling guitars, bass, drums and cowbell.
The people behind the East Coast Goth Industrial Festival say this show will reach to the heavens. The lineup features local and regional acts such as Myotis, Synthetic Division and Angel 99. Save your most sinister outfit for March 22 at Alley Katz. -- Compiled by Mike Rutz of "Activate" on 97.3 and Jay Smack of "Studio B" on 102.1.