Five years ago, singer and guitarist Dave Hammer and bassist Matthew DeRubertis met at the University of Akron, where they were both enrolled in a jazz guitar theory class. When the instructor asked if anyone had seen any good concerts recently, Hammer mentioned the Radiohead set he caught at Bonnaroo.
"When I heard that, I thought, 'OK. Maybe I should talk to this guy,'" recalls DeRubertis. "We kind of bonded over that." The two played in various bands over the years until they formed Dave Hammer's Power Supply last summer with drummer Chris Baker. The trio recorded its debut, Words, over a six-month period; the album was released earlier this year.
The band's members say their music sounds like "the Black Keys meet the Red Hot Chili Peppers." That mix certainly comes across in songs like the sparse, funky title track and the Hendrix-inspired "Middleground." "I don't think of us as a jam band, because the songs are very structured," says DeRubertis, who admits that his group occasionally includes "open sections for improvisation" and has "had success with that crowd."
Dave Hammer's Power Supply are gearing up for a Midwest tour in the fall by playing as many local shows as they can this summer. Plus, they have a batch of new songs ready to roll for another album. "But right now," says DeRubertis, "we're just trying to get the music from the first album out there." Dave Hammer's Power Supply perform with Thaddeus Green and the So and So's, the Woovs, and Matt Hectome at 8 p.m. Saturday at the Grog Shop. Tickets are $5, available at grogshop.gs.
A third installment of Once Again, the showcase featuring musicians who graduated from Cleveland Heights High School, takes place at 8 p.m. Friday at the Grog Shop. This one features singer and pianist Harry Bacharach, the INR CRCL, R&B singer Gwen Maul, DJ Rum Rozier, and the hip-hop groups Kounterclockwise, Grown Blak Mouse Piece and King Hue, and Wildlife Soundz. Tickets are $15, $10 in advance, and are available at grogshop.gs.
Goth-rockers Ludwyg have posted a previously unreleased live version of "Spider" to welcome visitors to their revamped website. The song is available as a free download at ludwyg.com.
Noise band Fascist Insect have just wrapped recording on a split 12-inch. The band's Mitch Ribis says the record will "rule ass." The album is due out by the end of the month. In the meantime, you can find more info at myspace.com/fascistinsect.
Columbus' Red Wanting Blue will preview songs from their upcoming album when they play the Live Wire Concert Club in Mentor at 9 p.m. Friday. Tickets are $12.