2017
The Mothlight & Minmax Present...
Kevin Morby w/ Shannon Lay
September
10
Sunday
Doors 8pm, Show 9pm - $15
Tickets, please
Kevin Morby
City Music is an airplane descending over frozen lakes into Chicago. City Music is riding the Q Train out to Coney Island to smell the ocean and a morning in Philadelphia where greats cranes reconfigure the buildings like an endless puzzle. City Music is a quiet afternoon moment on a bench in Baltimore, a highway in Seattle at night where the distant houses look like tiny flames and a bottle of red wine being drained on a bridge in Paris. City Music is a bus pulling into St. Louis at dawn where the arch looks like a metal rainbow reflecting the days early sunlight.

City Music is also the new album by Kevin Morby. Full of listless wanderlust, it's a collection inspired by and devoted to the metropolitan experience across America and beyond by a songwriter cast from his own mould. As he puts it: "It is a mix-tape, a fever dream, a love letter dedicated to those cities that I cannot get rid of, to those cities that are all inside of me."

His fourth album, City Music works as a counterpart to Morby's acclaimed 2016 release Singing Saw, an autobiographical set that reflected the solitude and landscape in which it was recorded. It was imagined as "an old bookshelf with a young Bob and Joni staring back at me, blank and timeless. They live here, in this left side of my brain, smoking cigarettes and playing acoustic guitars while lying on an unmade bed."

And now follows City Music, the yang to its yin, the heads to its tails. It is an collection crafted using the other side of its creator's brain, the jumping off point perhaps best once again encapsulated by an image. "Here, Lou Reed and Patti Smith stare out at the listener," explains Morby. "Stretched out on a living room floor they are somewhere in mid-70s Manhattan, also smoking cigarettes." It finds Morby exploring similar themes of solitude, but this time framed by a window of an uptown apartment that looks down upon an international urban landscape "exposed like a giant bleeding wound."

Morby rose to prominence as bassist in Woods, with who he recorded seven albums on Woodsist Records (Kurt Vile, The Oh Sees, Real Estate) while also forming The Babies with Cassie Ramone of Vivian Girls. Two albums and a clutch of classic singles with the latter followed. Morby's 2013 debut solo work Harlem River was a homage to New York and featured contributions from artists including Cate Le Bon and Tim Presley (of White Fence), while 2014's Still Life garnered universal critical praise. "It's easy to picture Morby with a wineskin under his arm," noted a Pitchfork review. "His every worldly possession hitched to his back, an eye constantly fixed on some faraway point on the horizon."

Recording at Panoramic Studios, a central Californian home-turned-recording studio, City Music saw Morby joined once again by former The Babies cohorts Megan Duffy (guitar) and Justin Sullivan (drums). Here the vocals were at recorded night, in darkness, overlooking a Pacific Ocean illuminated only by the stars, the wash and whisper of the ebbing tidal a distant soundtrack. Six weeks of European touring had left the trio speaking a secret language that only a band can speak. "The language of a musical family," explains Morby. "There was an outdoor shower with no curtain and deer ran through the front yard during the meals we cooked for each other..." The record was completed with Richard Swift in Oregon (producer of Foxygen, sometime member of The Black Keys).

From the widescreen opening of 'Come To Me Now' through the bubblegum stomp of the Ramones-eulogising '1-2-3-4' (which also references late poet Jim Carroll's litany of friends lost, 'People Who Died'), a stripped-back and wistful cover of 'Caught In My Eye' by nihilistic LA punk wrecking crew Germs and on to Leonard Cohen-evoking closer 'Downtown's Lights', City Music reads like a selection of musical postcards composed and posted in the moment. It is a forensic and poetic examination of a modern America in love with the myth of itself.

At the big beating heart of these songs is the voice and conscience of the city. All cities. We see them viewed from differing angles; from down in the gutter, and drifting up into the celestial firmament. "I am walking through a Chinatown in a major American city and now I am a guitar part taking place in my head," offers Morby by a way of a commentary for the album's inception. "It falls around me like rain, dancing with the neon lights coming off of the signs of the restaurants and bars. Now I am a lamp full of hot air floating away, looking down. The city is beautiful like one million candles with different sized flames, moving in their own directions. A line finds me and grabbing it I hold on tight. I sing to myself, 'Oh, that City Music, oh that city sound...'"

Here the album gives voice to the all those cities speaking the same universal language of chaos and commerce and culture. It views the city as an Oz-like experience, with your host cast as Dorothy, the Scarecrow, the Tin Man and the Cowardly Lion, a narrator by turns innocent, awestruck, fearful and fearless. Where a world once black and white is now rainbow coloured. "I am a city and I have many moods," it says via its human conduit. "I am dangerous and I am gorgeous. Like a proud forest made of metal and brick I am constantly changing shape, growing bigger and smaller all at the same time. I hold you but you do not hold me...."

City Music. Let it hold you.

--Ben Myers.
March 2017.
Shannon Lay
Shannon Lay (from Los Angeles, California) plays and sings haunting post-pop ghost-folk.

Check out Shannon Lay's 2017 debut album, All This Life Goin Down (on Do Not Disturb Records).
text list
with images
venue info
Aunt Sis
Aug
18
Friday
Free Show!

Aunt Sis

w/ Wizardskin, Heatwarmer, Cyboman

Doors 8:30, Show 9:30 - $Free

Lucy_Dacus_576ad3b0e9170
Aug
19
Saturday

Lucy Dacus

w/ Molly Burch

Doors 8:30 Show 9:30 - $10adv / $12

Tickets, please
unnamed-1
Aug
21
Monday
Free Monday!

Dina Maccabee

w/ Janel Leppin, Alec Sturgis

9pm - $Free

unnamed-2
Aug
22
Tuesday
MANAS August Residency at The Mothlight!

MANAS

w/ The Dead Tongues, Jeremy Joachim, Simple Machines (House & Land)

9pm - $5 Suggested

durand
Aug
23
Wednesday

Durand Jones & The Indications

w/ Sister Ivy

Doors 8:30 Show 9:30 - $10adv / $12

Tickets, please
The deep end
Aug
24
Thursday

The Deep End Impov Comedy Presents: Tidal Eclipse 2017



Doors 7pm, Show 8pm - $7

1e4633_9f27ed73e8d84043a3cbf1815e0c68c2~mv2_d_2474_1626_s_2
Aug
25
Friday

Plankeye Peggy

w/ Fable Cry

Doors 8:30 Show 9:30 - $5

20596953_1409370049183394_4826042188359451762_n
Aug
26
Saturday

HEX III: A Benefit for Justice For All People (JFAP)



9:30pm - $Donations

14991818_1814348865443610_8913117171853307578_n
Aug
28
Monday
Free Monday!

The Spiral

w/ Social Circle, Armadilla

9pm - $Free

10353567_1954536318104265_1008548009266291673_n
Aug
29
Tuesday

Celia Verbeck

w/ The We4pon, Morel Atmosphere

Doors 8:30 Show 9:30 - $5 Suggested Donation

18767481_471255476551000_1345906772198505472_n
Aug
30
Wednesday

Thee Sidewalk Surfers

w/ Shaken Nature, The Chickenhawks

Doors 8:30 Show 9:30 - $5

smith-street
Aug
31
Thursday

The Smith Street Band

w/ TBA

Doors 8pm, Show 9pm - $12adv / $15

Tickets, please
the volt per octaves
Sep
01
Friday
"The Volt Per Octaves Farewell Show"

The Volt Per Octaves

w/ Luxury Club, Cyboman, Orgatroid

Doors 8:00, Show 9:00 - $5

inter-arma
Sep
03
Sunday

Inter Arma

w/ Brain Tentacles, Uninhabitable

Doors 8:30, Show 9:30 - $10adv / $12

Tickets, please
15202683_1028394320617302_3104561912864203472_n
Sep
05
Tuesday

Malevich

w/ Gnarlscar, Kno

Doors 8:30, Show 9:30 - $5

Slang+Brussels+HT_TextureFINAL
Sep
06
Wednesday

Beach Slang

w/ *repeat repeat

Doors 8pm, Show 9pm - $15

Tickets, please
unnamed-2
Sep
07
Thursday

The Moth: True Stories Told Live (Theme: Schooled)



7pm - $10

Tickets, please
floating
Sep
08
Friday

Floating Action

w/ Spaceface

Doors 8:30, Show 9:30 - $10adv / $12

Tickets, please
protomartyr_-_photo_credit_daniel_topete_-_launch_001_-_300dpi
Sep
09
Saturday

Protomartyr

w/ Melkbelly

Doors 8:30, Show 9:30 - $12adv / $14

Tickets, please
kevinmorbypress
Sep
10
Sunday
The Mothlight & Minmax Present...

Kevin Morby

w/ Shannon Lay

Doors 8pm, Show 9pm - $15

Tickets, please
power_trip_10-13-12-0146
Sep
13
Wednesday

Power Trip

w/ Weak Wrists, Abjex

Doors 8:30, Show 9:30 - $12adv / $14

Tickets, please
teton
Sep
14
Thursday

Teton

w/ Pampillonio & Parish

Doors 8:30, Show 9:30 - $5

14249885_1100995303324848_2922006126510950145_o
Sep
15
Friday

Heartscape Landbreak

w/ Desperate Pilot, Superflaw

Doors 8:30, Show 9:30 - $5

New-Orleans-River-Boat
Sep
16
Saturday

Todd Day Wait's Pigpen

w/ Wyatt Yurth & The Gold Standard

Doors 8:30 Show 9:30 - $10

Tickets, please
dust-moth_wide-10a3d33162426833c64e46136a21a3d084628fc7-s600-c85
Sep
17
Sunday

Dust Moth

w/ Mustard Gas and Roses

Doors 8:30, Show 9:30 - $10adv/ $12

Tickets, please
sam-stambaugh-pics-may-2010-hi-res-light
Sep
18
Monday
Free Monday!

Dan Blakeslee

w/ Andy Ferrell, Sister Mary

9pm - $Free

14046139_1064334740325523_700837002253892819_n
Sep
20
Wednesday

Redleg Husky

w/ Alexa Rose

Doors 8:00, Show 9:00 - $8

Tickets, please
jonathan-atkinson
Sep
22
Friday

Jonathan Atkinson (Record Release!)

w/ Hearts Gone South, Vaden "Papa Vay" Landers

Doors 8:30 Show 9:30 - $7

7142z9w777L._SL1500_
Sep
23
Saturday

Bob Dylan's "Time Out Of Mind" Played Live (20 Year Anniversary)



Doors 8:30, Show 9:30 - $Free

14034827_312472639107528_7608627058723813022_n
Sep
25
Monday
Free Monday!

Kno

w/ Harsh Realm, TBA

9pm - $Free

messthetics
Sep
26
Tuesday

The Messthetics

w/ Tashi Dorji

Doors 8pm, Show 9pm - $8adv / $10

Tickets, please
Zola-Jesus-OKOVI-cover
Sep
29
Friday

Zola Jesus

w/ John Wiese

Doors 8:30, Show 9:30 - $15

Tickets, please
Russian-Circles
Sep
30
Saturday

Russian Circles

w/ Yautja

Doors 8:30, Show 9:30 - $15adv/ $18

Tickets, please
toybox
Oct
01
Sunday

Toybox Theatre

w/ Tinderbox Circus Sideshow

8pm - $15

Tickets, please
jerome fino_ALLIANCE
Oct
02
Monday
Free Mothlight Monday!

Mdou Moctar (Tuareg music from Niger!)



9pm - $Free

Ballister-by-Geert-Vandepoele
Oct
03
Tuesday

Ballister (Rempis/Nilssen-Love/Lonberg-Holm)



Doors 8:00, Show 9:00 - $10

Tickets, please
david-liebe-hart-scandal
Oct
04
Wednesday

David Liebe Hart (Adult Swim/Tim and Eric/Dr. Steve Brule)

w/ The Wham, Bam! Puppet Slam

Doors 8pm, Show 9pm - $12adv / $15

Tickets, please
The Digpress Red 6000x4000 Sean Macneil
Oct
05
Thursday

The Dig

w/ KOLARS

Doors 8:00, Show 9:00 - $10adv / $12

Tickets, please
photo by PJ Sykes
Oct
06
Friday

No BS! Brass Band



Doors 8pm, Show 9pm - $13adv / $15

Tickets, please
Moon_Duo_Press_Howard_Wise
Oct
07
Saturday

Moon Duo

w/ Birds of Avalon, Nest Egg

Doors 8:30, Show 9:30 - $13adv / $15

Tickets, please
widowspeak
Oct
08
Sunday

Widowspeak

w/ Clearance

Doors 8pm, Show 9pm - $12adv / $14

Tickets, please
ahleuchatistas-2015-promo-650x400
Oct
10
Tuesday

Ahleuchatistas

w/ Bit Brigade

Doors 8:30, Show 9:30 - $8adv / $10

Tickets, please
royal-thunder
Oct
12
Thursday

Royal Thunder

w/ Brother Hawk, The Franks

Doors 8:30, Show 9:30 - $8adv / $10

Tickets, please
billcallahanpress
Oct
13
Friday
The Mothlight & Worthwhile Sounds Present...

Bill Callahan **At The Masonic Temple**

w/ Nathan Bowles

Doors 7pm, Show 8pm - $20adv / $25

SOLD OUT
unnamed
Oct
13
Friday

Charlie Parr



Doors 8pm, Show 9pm - $10adv / $12

Tickets, please
_I8A4878 HI RES
Oct
14
Saturday

Moses Sumney

w/ TBA

Doors 8pm, Show 9pm - $15adv/ $18

Tickets, please
sheer-mag
Oct
18
Wednesday

Sheer Mag

w/ TBA, Kreamy 'Lectric Santa

Doors 8:30, Show 9:30 - $10adv / $12

Tickets, please
unnamed-2
Oct
19
Thursday

The Moth: True Stories Told Live (Theme: Creepy)



7pm - $10

Tickets, please
SanFermin_Group_109_4000w
Oct
20
Friday

San Fermin

w/ Gracie and Rachel

Doors 8pm, Show 9pm - $12adv / $14

Tickets, please
MILD HIGH CLUB LANDSCAPE BY TAYLOR BOYLSTON
Oct
21
Saturday

Mild High Club

w/ Anemone, Andy Loeb's Space Heater

Doors 8:30 Show 9:30 - $12adv / $14

Tickets, please
19264572_1912319135658666_4490614122201896872_o
Oct
22
Sunday

An Evening with Deloused: The Music of the Mars Volta



Doors 8pm, Show 9pm - $10

0008333784_10
Oct
23
Monday
Free Monday!

Daydream Creatures

w/ The Hot Knives

9pm - $Free

SL-3232-32-RETOUCH
Oct
26
Thursday

Son Little

w/ ALA.NI

Doors 8pm, Show 9pm - $13adv / $15

Tickets, please
AveryTare1
Oct
27
Friday

Avey Tare **At The Masonic Temple**



Doors 7pm, Show 8pm - $18adv / $20

Tickets, please
maxresdefault
Oct
28
Saturday

Hailu Mergia (Ethiopian R&B/Jazz/Soul)



Doors 8pm, Show 9pm - $15

Tickets, please
LA-Witch
Oct
29
Sunday

L.A. Witch

w/ TBA

Doors 8:30, Show 9:30 - $10

Tickets, please
RAA20161web_photo-by-Vanessa-Heins
Nov
07
Tuesday

The Rural Alberta Advantage

w/ Yukon Blonde

Doors 8pm, Show 9pm - $15

Tickets, please
girlpool_press_photo-2
Nov
08
Wednesday

Girlpool

w/ Palm, Lala Lala

Doors 8:30 Show 9:30 - $13adv / $15

Tickets, please
IMG_0984
Nov
15
Wednesday

Caleb Klauder Country Band



Doors 8:00, Show 9:00 - $10adv / $12

Tickets, please
unnamed-2-1
Nov
16
Thursday

The Moth: True Stories Told Live. (Theme: Control)



7pm - $10

Tickets, please
19511290_1605855442782386_4208068887625954665_n
Nov
18
Saturday

Chris Rodriguez & Abby The Spoon Lady

w/ The Paper Crowns

Doors 8:00 Show 9:00 - $8adv / $10

Tickets, please
BULLY
Nov
19
Sunday

Bully

w/ Aye Nako

Doors 8:30, Show 9:30 - $15

Tickets, please
unnamed-2-1
Dec
21
Thursday

The Moth: True Stories Told Live. (Theme: Dirt)



7pm - $10

Tickets, please