5 Beaver Valley-Pittsburgh Musical Numbers Bring Songs Worth Listening To

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Five cool new releases from local bands and singers to put on your radar:

1. Small Wars

Abby Krizner, one of Pittsburgh’s most popular radio DJs, also plays a mean guitar.

Here’s Krizner’s latest high-tension riff on “Drama Club,” Tiny Wars’ debut album.

Describing itself as “the new wave of heavy pop with a rock n’ roll backbone”, Tiny Wars pairs Swiss singer Susan Pedrazzi with four seasoned hard-rockers from Pittsburgh; bassist Aaron Hutzel (Von Dane), guitarist Rocko Maharg (Mother Hawk); drummer Dennis Brown (Motorpsychos) and Krizner, the 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. jock on WXDX-FM, who also performed in the Motorpsychos and with Fist Fight on The Parking Lot.

“Tiny Wars radiates lyrical empowerment, the vulnerability of falling in love and learning to pick yourself up, no matter how many tries it takes,” boasts the band’s press kit.

Listening to the band’s five-song EP, I hear influences like ’80s Blondie and Scandal “Goodbye to You” and “The Warrior.”

Tiny Wars opened a show in July at Jergel’s Rhythm Grille for 80s band ABC New Wave, impressing The Times guest critic Dan LeRoy who praised Krizner’s band for its melodic, “feel-good retro” sound “fueled by a punchy, supple rhythm section”. As part of this eight-song set, Tiny Wars covered Eddie Money’s “Think I’m In Love”.

After:Pop group ABC spoke and transcended their time at Jergel’s

Lead singer Pedrazzi moved from Switzerland to Pittsburgh a few years ago, finding it easier to find musicians here who could understand and execute her vision of 70s and 80s inspired rock and pop. that she grew up listening.

“Drama Club” arrives digitally and on tape on September 2.

Catch the album release show on September 2 at Spirit in Lawrenceville. The first 50 people at the door receive a free pizza.

Poster for the Tiny Wars album release in Pittsburgh.

2. Dan Bubien

Aliquippa soul and blues mainstay Dan Bubien released his most adventurous song to date, “Times Like These,” on Friday.

There’s a horn-sounding intro, created on the keyboard, and vocals ranging from the grizzled depths of Nathaniel Rateliff to the intimidating heights reminiscent of Motown. The emotion and resilience of the song was born from the darkest days of the pandemic.

“What inspired the song was really being locked up all this time with nothing but my family (wife and son) by my side, because we were all going crazy,” Bubien said. “It’s a pretty simple song about love that gets you through hard times. I wrote it during lockdown and played all the parts myself, recorded and mixed it myself in my basement studio which I call “Mojoland”.

“It definitely started under the influence of ‘Flow With It’ by St. Paul and the Broken Bones, in terms of rhythm, groove and drum feel,” Bubien said. “Then I had the idea of ​​a big release/ending where there’s so much going on and jamming and playing at the same time while kind of following a hook horn line. I wanted to have something something big and fun for everyone to play. , like a Marcus King thing or what Tedeschi Trucks will do. Also one of my favorite guys, Doyle Bramhall II, will do it a lot in his songs. These guys are all so soulful and can combine that rock thing at the end but retain their soul and funk.

“When it comes to mixing, I like to have character and dirt on my voice. I’m a sucker for an old vintage sound,” said Bubien, who opened a show for the Fabulous Thunderbirds at Jergel’s last Wednesday. Rhythm Grid.

Bubien will be releasing a music video for “Times Like These” soon, and you can count on the new song shot by 91.3-WYEP-FM’s “Rollin’ and Tumblin” hosted on Saturday nights by Rob O’Friel, a staunch supporter of local music. blues acts.

After:My favorite guitar: Dan Bubien

Aliquippa singer-songwriter Dan Bubien has a new version.

3. Jeff Wiley

For a retirement gift, Jeff Wiley’s family bought him studio time.

The Ellwood City singer-songwriter put it to good use, recording a three-song EP, “Rosebud”, featuring guest appearances by two of the Clarks – guitarist Rob James and drummer Dave Minarik – plus member Clarks assistant Noah Minarik (Dave’s son) with added guitar.

Wiley’s “Catching The Wind” rides a folk breeze; “Start Over” with its ample chorus flirts with yacht rock.

The new EP from Ellwood City singer-songwriter Jeff Wiley.

The title track “Rosebud” with its ’70s soft-rock/James Taylor vibe, doesn’t take its title from the big Strip District nightclub, “but I played at Rosebud’s, one of the loudest venues in Pittsburgh,” Wiley said.

Watch Wiley and his band Common Ground perform at cozy ShuBrew in Zelienople on September 1 and 15.

You can find the “Rosebud” EP on Spotify, iTunes, Apple Music and YouTube.

Wiley is the father of Jay Wiley, the Ellwood City native who managed The Hawkeyes.

Ellwood City's Jeff Wiley has a new EP.

4. Zack Keim

Stuck in my head lately has been Zack Keim’s “Canyon,” a slightly psychedelic, very catchy California folk tune that the 25-year-old Pittsburgh artist wrote at a personal low point in 2020. , when his band The Nox Boys canceled their West Coast and European tours due to the pandemic.

Breaking up with his longtime girlfriend, who wanted him to become a mail carrier, Keim took a job at Uber Eats, where during a delivery, the song’s offbeat “Can-yonn” phrasing came to him. ‘spirit.

“Canyon” received praise from multiple critics, and Keim booked a fall East Coast/Rust Belt tour with an Oct. 7 date at Brillobox in Pittsburgh.

One of the hottest musicians I’ve met, I’d love to see Keim book a gig at one of Ambridge’s breweries Altered Genius or Fermata who have done a great job of bringing Pittsburgh artists into Beaver County.

Pittsburgh singer Zack Keim's new version.

5. Jordan McLaughlin

McLaughlin, a country/Heartland rock singer-songwriter from Hopewell, impresses on his week-long single “Boot Laces” available on Spotify, YouTube and other streamers.

The lyrics are relatable, with a good measure of vulnerability, painting a picture of a blue-collar worker battered by a 13-hour workday, but finding immeasurable strength once home and being hugged by his wife. woman.

There’s a bit of sex appeal that doesn’t get gritty, a feat that so many contemporary country songs fail to achieve.

“As you reach out your hand to pull me closer / Like boot laces I unravel,” McLaughlin sings, a verse later adding “She ain’t changed her sundress / The way she move puts my will to the test.”

Catch McLaughlin Acoustic on October 24 at the Grumpy Beaver Pub in Bridgewater.

Hopewell Township's Jordan McLaughlin has released a new single.

After:Carlos Santana his spectacular car at Star Lake

Scott Tady can be reached at [email protected].

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