Sunday, May 20, 2018
Features and More

SoundCheck: Machine Gun Kelly, Alexander and the Grapes CD release, Jacob Jeffries Band, Homegrown Hip Hop 4

m Machine Gun Kelly

With Tech N9ne, Krizz Kaliko, ¡Mayday!, Prozak, Stevie Stone

Details: Wednesday 7 p.m. The Hawaiian Village at Stadium Green Iguana, 2520 N Dale Mabry Highway, Tampa. $27. (813) 868-7600.

Theoretically, this is madcap indie rapper Tech N9ne's tour. And while Tech (pictured right) brings plenty of oddities — we're talking anything from Dean Martin sampling and backward rapping to disturbing horrorcore, grunting and guitars — all eyes will be glued to Tampa Bay trouble-starter and rapper Machine Gun Kelly. MGK was arrested in St. Petersburg following a show at State Theatre and is also being sued by a local security guard for the incident. And during his last visit to Coachman Park, he stripped down to his skivvies and climbed the scaffolding. So if this Cleveland rapper lives the clamorous life, why would his music be any different? Rest assured, it isn't. Expect rage-rap anthem Wild Boy and shot-chasing LTFU. Sure, this is a rap show, but MGK's punk-hop has more in common with Travis Barker than Eminem.

> Alexander and the Grapes CD release

With Bachelors in English, The Happiness Machine

Details: Saturday 8 p.m. Crowbar, 1812 17th St. N, Ybor City. $8. (813) 241-8600.

Young, harmony-happy locals Alexander and the Grapes offer up gently woozy tunes wise beyond their years. This bunch's blend of baroque harmonic pop, alt-country and rock nods to folk fathers the Byrds, the Association and Neil Young. Their new debut full length Hemispheres, however, packs a '90s rock wallop, particularly on East Coast, a track that singer Alexander Charos says encapsulates the tension of writing a new song. "Everything we do feels like an experiment," he says. "That tension of not knowing the outcome but working really hard regardless is frightening but exciting at the same time." On a lighter note, the band's name used to be "Alexander and the Greats," but it was written as "Grapes" on a flyer promoting its inaugural show and the name stuck.

Jacob Jeffries Band

Details: Saturday 9 p.m. Durty Nelly's, 149 First Ave. N, St. Petersburg. Cost not available. (727) 823-3878.

"It's going to take one little person like Jacob to open doors to all those other Jacobs down there," the New York Times pronounced of this Miami working man's band. (Did they say this kind of thing about Springsteen?) The Jacob Jeffries Band recently won the Nationals Singer Songwriter Shoot-Out (previous winners include John Mayer and the Indigo Girls) and also became the first musical act to make the cover of the Broward Palm Beach New Times. In other words, they're kind of on a roll. Before hitting the road with Eric Hutchinson and Sister Hazel this summer, they'll play St. Pete with piano-pop, rock and '70s soul tunes that conjure up a combo of the Hush Sound and Jason Mraz.

Homegrown Hip Hop 4

Featuring Hagan Lee, The Rukus, Waystid Talent, Infinite Skillz and Jake Jansen, Headnokka, FLA ALL DAY, Samsoul, DJ Carl Spinslow, Da Beav

Details: Saturday 8 p.m. The Local 662, 662 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. $10 to $12. facebook.com/thelocal662.

When it comes to rallying up the hip-hop troops around Tampa Bay, consider Infinite Skillz's El Capitan. Skillz brings talent from both sides of the bridge together during the fourth edition of the Homegrown Hip Hop showcase on Saturday. "Improving the hip-hop scene locally takes a collective effort and this annual show is my little experiment towards that end," he says. Skillz also preaches partying peaceably since promoters and venues have been wary of booking potentially violent rap shows.

Times correspondent Carole Liparoto can be reached at [email protected]

 
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