Friday, Oct. 14, 9 p.m.
Independent Ale House, 110 Poinsett Hwy., Greenville
$5 advance/$8 door
The North Carolina quintet Porch 40 plays a compulsively danceable brand of jam-funk heavy on the grooves and riffs, and they do it with one of the more unusual lineups in either genre: There’s a violin-and-saxophone tandem over top of the expected guitar, bass and drums. What’s more, had the band’s first incarnation stayed in place, their instrumentation would’ve been even odder. “When we got together, our first jam session was kind of interesting,” says sax player Scott Burr. “Half of us didn’t know what instruments we were going to be playing. And we also had an oboe player and another guitar player.” As the band experimented with their sound, Burr says they realized that they could use funk as a foundation to explore various musical avenues. “Elements of funk can be found in a lot of other genres,” he says. “If you listen to anything from classical music to pop or heavy metal, there are elements of funk because it can all be funky. Funk is the one place that everything in our music would fit.”
The Mantras w/ The LOZ Band
Friday, Oct. 14, 8 p.m.
Gottrocks, 200 Eisenhower Drive, Greenville
Most hard-touring bands will tell you that they want their studio work to be as close to their live show as possible. But not the Greensboro quintet known as The Mantras. Their new album, “Knot Suite,” is a seven-song slab of guitar-heavy, prog-rock influenced jam music that they recorded in their own studio. “We have a full-time sound engineer that travels with us who’s a really good studio engineer,” says singer/guitarist Keith Allen. “And going into this one, we wanted to make it more like a studio album with some techniques and layering that we hadn’t previously done. Everything’s a lot more tightened up.” Despite that freedom to experiment, Allen says that they haven’t strayed too far from their onstage mix of heavy riffs, polyrhythmic percussion and extended song structures. “We haven’t ever recorded a song we haven’t played live first,” he says. “We didn’t do too much to the songs that we can’t reproduce live.”
The Indoor Kids, w/ Mighty, The Jam Jams & Jared Hart
Friday, Oct. 14, 9 p.m.
Radio Room, 2845 N. Pleasantburg Drive, Greenville
$5 (over 21)/$7 (under)
The Indoor Kids play a fast, loud, hard brand of early ’80s-style punk that’s just as heavy on catchy choruses as it is pure volume. The band, singer/guitarist Matt Fessler, bassist Wes Gilliam and drummer Will Thornhill, have been together about a year, but they’ve come up with a strong stable of old-school songs that stay true to the spirit of punk both musically and lyrically. “Matt tends to write about things that he’s frustrated with or disenchanted with,” Gilliam says. “And a lot of the topics happen to lean towards more political aspects. He’s written songs about police brutality, being monitored by the government and a slew of other topics. Punk rock tends to be the one genre of music that’s typically associated with political outspokenness, except maybe for acts like Rage Against the Machine or Bruce Springsteen, and even though a lot of other artists can get political, their music isn’t always viewed as political. They’re a little more vague and pseudo-watered down/palatable for a larger audience. I think that’s one of the great things about the punk genre, is that it isn’t watered down.”