Going to Mars Tour
Judah & the Lion
The Academic, Tyson Motsenbocker
Sun, October 22
Doors: 7:00 pm
Judah & the Lion
Years before forming one of Nashville's most genre-bending bands, the members of Judah & the Lion grew up in separate corners of the U.S., listening to every type of music that came their way. They loved it all: the twang of folk, the beat of hip-hop, the drive of rock & roll, the punch of pop. Later, after college brought all four musicians to Tennessee, it only made sense to combine those different backgrounds — and different sounds — together.
With their second full-length album, Folk Hop N Roll, the guys shine a light on the place where their influences overlap. It's a wide-ranging sound, with fuzz bass, hip-hop percussion, distorted banjo riffs, and super-sized melodies all stirred into the same mixing pot.
"There's no boundaries," says front man Judah Akers, who shares the band's lineup with drummer Spencer Cross, mandolin player Brian Macdonald, and banjo wiz Nate Zuercher. "We wanted to make something raw, something with attitude. We all grew up loving these hip-hop beats, so why not make an album that has the grit of Run DMC or Beastie Boys, along with all the folk instruments that we play?"
Like Kids These Days — the band's debut record, which climbed to number four on the Bill- board Folk Chart and number two on the genre-wide Heatseekers chart after its release in September 2014 — Folk Hop N Roll was produced by award winner Dave Cobb (Jason Isbell, Sturgill Simpson, Chris Stapleton). Cobb captured the band's new songs in a series of quick, inspired takes, aiming for performances that sounded real and raw rather than polished and per- fect. Everything was done in just two weeks. The goal was to fuel the album with the same electricity that fills the band's live show.
An independent band whose success has arrived not on the back of some big- budget major label, but through the band's own touring, Judah & the Lion have built a large, loyal fanbase on the road. They played 150 shows in 2015 alone, stretching their gigs all across America and Scandinavia. Along the way, they shared stages with artists like Mat Kearney, Drew Holcomb, and Ben Rector. That sort to drive — the commitment to chasing down their dreams, one en- core at a time — also fuels the lyrics that appear on Folk Hop N Roll, a record whose songs spin stories of struggle, triumph, and all points in between.
"This record was made for the live show," Akers promises. "Our shows are all about the experience we share with our fans. We know that people work everyday jobs or go to school, and they're dealing with life, and yet they're still choosing to spend the night with us. We don't take that lightly. We give them an experience. We throw an absolute rage. And all the songs were made with that in mind. They're fun, carefree, and youthful, and we live our lives that way, too."
Anthemic and wildly creative, Folk Hop N Roll is unlike anything else in modern music. It's a rule-breaking record, with Judah & the Lion creating a sound that belongs entirely to them. From the earthy stomp of roots music to the bold bounce of hip-hop, Folk Hop N Roll casts a wide net, proof that Judah & the Lion — who are now four releases into their career — have developed quite the roar.
Continuing the success of Folk Hop N’ Roll, Judah & the Lion’s hit single, “Take It All Back 2.0”, recently reached the #1 spot on the Alternative charts. The band also looks forward to US tours with Twenty One Pilots, Kaleo, Incubus and Jimmy Eat World, and World Wide headline dates in 2017.
Forming in their early teens, The Academic are Craig Fitzgerald, Dean Gavin and brothers Matt and Stephen Murtagh. In late 2014 word started spreading throughout the flatlands of Westmeath, a small county in the middle of Ireland about these 4 young kids who played really fast and short sets that sometimes just fell apart but sometimes was pure magic to witness. No frills just short, sweet and straight to the point.
Lead singer Craig Fitzgerald says "We have been together since we started secondary school, gradually learning our craft and playing where anybody was prepared to listen to us. There has been no defined path or formula for us. We write, we rehearse, we plug in and we play. It's that simple. We are not a band that was shaped overnight. We have grown up as people and as musicians over the last few years and we have gone through a lot to get to the point where we are happy with the music that we are making right now. "
Ireland’s newest indie-rock sensation The Academic have had an incredible 18 months. From playing a 'Battle of The Bands' competition at their local high school the band have emerged as one of the most exciting live acts on the Irish and UK music scene. With an already impressive live resume which include some of Europe’s most high profile festivals as well as opening slots for acts like Twenty One Pilots, The Strokes, Catfish And The Bottlemen, The Academic have also been a firm favourite with the online blogosphere reaching No.3 on Hype Machine, amassed millions of streams online and have also had widespread international radio play including support from BBC Radio 1 in the UK (Annie Mac, Huw Stephens,Phil Taggart).
“biting indie rock - intensity to the band's songwriting, making it impossible to dislodge” Clash Music
“it’s time to jump on the bandwagon, these guys are going to be big” – Lauren Murphy, The Irish Times
"Pardon me while I rock the F*** out" - The Burning Ear
“Jangly, garage rock guitars drive alongside self-confident punchiness and nostalgic purpose. They are a band that has all the ingredients of a wide-range breakout as their music spreads across Europe and beyond in 2017.” Operation Every Band
In North Central Washington State, Tyson Motsenbocker grew up in the apple orchards and pine forests at the foothills of the Cascade Mountains. It’s the pastoral sound of his childhood that has defined the sound of his music, even among the freeways and fast pace of his new Southern California home. After the release of two EP’s Until it Lands and Rivers and Roads, Motsenbocker defined himself as a mature lyricist and accomplished songwriter, sharing the stage with the likes of David Bazan, Vance Joy and James Bay.
In 2013, after the death of his mother and hero, Motsenbocker walked the six hundred mile stretch of coastline to San Francisco in memory of her. In the contrast of loud cars on a dirty highway with the serene beauty of the Pacific Ocean, Motsenbocker contracted a new view of life beyond loss, a renegotiated relationship with God and peace inside the turmoil. This walk would become the basis for his debut full length record, Letters To Lost Loves, available now on Tooth & Nail Records.
815 V St. NW
Washington, DC, 20001
815 V St. NW
Washington, DC, 20001