Float Downstream (self-released)
With all the alt-country and folksy fusion bands that are around right now, it’s interesting to hear a straight-up folk album for once. Evie Ladin plays folk in a way that’s faithful to tradition — classic storytelling; crisp, clean banjo and folk guitar; and sweet vocals. If you like folk you’ll love this, and if you’re from the South it’ll feel like taking a trip home.
At Freight & Salvage (2020 Addison St., Berkeley) on February 25. 8 p.m., $19.50
Summer of Glaciers, aka San Francisco-based musician Ryan Wasterlain, released its debut album earlier this week, Concentric. Engineered and produced by Oakland electronic duo James & Evander, the album “mimics my live set in the fact that it is meant to be listened to from start to finish,” said Wasterlain. “The songs flow into one another all the way until the end to create a larger ‘story.’” Performed live, the musician uses guitar, loop pedals, and drum and bass programming (i.e., DJing live instruments). For more info, go here.
Caveat Emptor (I Am We Productions)
This collection of folksy roots tunes sounds like it would be more at home in Appalachia than the Bay Area. Whether or not you’ll like it will depend entirely on your fondness for all things Americana. Think fiddles and lyrical tall tales, with a slight touch of the macabre adding a genuine Southern flavor.
At the House of Shields (39 New Montgomery St., San Francisco) on February 27. 8 p.m., $5
Several years ago, local filmmaker Kerri Gawryn made a short documentary film about a workshop that taught formerly homeless women how to use black-and-white 35mm photography to express their experiences. For her next project, Gawryn decided she wanted to do something similar, but in a longer format and focusing on youth. In her research, she came across the program Beats, Rhymes & Life, a hip-hop therapy program based out of Oakland High School. It turned out to be a perfect match.
Amoeba in Berkeley will host a free performance and signing by Tegan and Sara on Thursday, March 4, at 5 p.m. Space for this intimate show will be extremely limited, so a limited amount of tickets will be handed out starting Friday, February 26, at 10:30 a.m. Tickets will be given one per person, will be non-transferable, and entitle the holder to one signed item by the band. (The band plays the Fox Theater on March 5.)
In other Amoeba free-show news, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club will perform at the Haight Street store on Friday, March 12, at 6 p.m. (The band plays Slim’s on March 9 & 10.) For a complete list of upcoming shows, click here.
Travel is a lovely little EP. Airy and ambient, it’s rather reminiscent of Arcade Fire, but with janglier guitars and less ethereal vocals. With a lyrical style that’s atypical for an indie band and some old-school touches that bring to mind the classic college bands of the Eighties, Gosta Berling almost sounds like it belongs in a different era.
At Kimo’s (1351 Polk St., San Francisco) on February 25. 9 p.m., $6
This Saturday, Feb. 27, Freight & Salvage in Berkeley will host its quarterly community open house, which includes performances, workshops, and jam sessions — all free and open to the public. Held from noon to 4 p.m., the event promises “dancing in the aisles, singing on the stairs, and fiddling in the lobby are sure to ensue.” For a full schedule, go here.
Though the Haitian earthquake has all but vanished from the mainstream media’s radar, local musicians continue to spotlight the need for sending relief to the country. Local hip-hop artist Young Haitti announced he’ll donate 50 percent of the proceeds from his fifth album, The Baydahaitian, to the American Red Cross Haiti Relief Fund. “After seeing the devastation over there and still waiting to find out if my own family members are alive, I knew I had to do something to contribute,” said the artist in a press release. The album is available in stores and on iTunes, Amazon, and CDBaby.com. Latin jazz singer Kat Parra will also donate $1 per CD sale of her recent album Dos Amantes to the Save the Children Fund, which helps kids in Haiti who were orphaned as a result of the earthquake.