The rhymers, producers and players in Honeypot have a slew of new projects in the works. The musical rap project Soul Colossal opens for Illogic at Musica (51 E. Market St., Akron) on Thursday, July 2. Soul Colossal features MCs Chaka and Gator rhyming over beats by Corey Farrow, who created the tracks with his fellow members of Akron's Low in the Sky, Joe Minadeo and Pat McNulty. The project's self-titled album is available as a free download from Akron microlabel Patternbased, at Patternbased.com. The Honeypot crew's next slated release is Rap Crack, the result of sessions with Rubber City producer Probeatz. Both Chaka and Gator hope to finish solo mixtapes this year, and they're working on a record with 1NTC Productions' Franchize.
Nationally touring, Chicago-based Metallica tribute band Battery has a new James Hetfield: singer-songwriter George Hartwig, who also fronts Cleveland's Megadeth tribute Degameth. "It actually means good things for Dega," says Hartwig. "I can get us on a lot more tag-team shows with Battery."
Akron singer-songwriter Joseph Arthur, who was discovered by Peter Gabriel in the mid-'90s and has released seven albums since then, is among the musicians featured on Summer's Kiss, a new tribute to Cincinnati's Afghan Whigs. He performs "Step Into the Light." The album also features Cincinnati-based Wussy and Seattle music legend Mark Lanegan, whose latest project, the Gutter Twins, is a collaboration with Whigs frontman Greg Dulli.
Cleveland's Uno Lady has been tapped to perform at the First Annual Denver International One-Man-Band Fest on Saturday, July 11. Check out the bewitching, raw-nerve one-woman electro artist at myspace.com/unolady.
Six years since its last record, Cleveland's 2nd Half is chipping away at a second album. Ben Schigel (Chimaira, Drowning Pool) is mixing. On Thursday, July 2, the power pop-rock quartet plays the Pedal to the Point benefit for the Multiple Sclerosis Society at the Hi-Fi Club (11802 Detroit Ave.)
Rap talent can compete for a performance slot at September 19's Ohio Hip-Hop Awards on Sunday, July 5, at the Phantasy Nite Club (11729 Detroit Ave., Lakewood). Doors at 9; admission $10. Find more info at ohiohiphopawards.com.