Three to See | 05.06

Brian Sullivan Quartet | Brian Sullivan is a local drummer who—despite his Web site admission that he doesn’t like putting his band in any specific category—creates music frequently termed “free jazz.” Though I’m no expert in jazz, I do enjoy great music when I hear it, and anyone with an interest in good jazz music will certainly enjoy this group. Sullivan is a talented drummer who has put together a strong group of musicians featuring Sadeeq Holmes on piano, Bill Schafer on saxophone, and Doug Falk on standup bass. The overall result is quite good and the music achieves what it should: It takes you someplace. The original compositions vary a bit in tempo, yet there is never a lag in the set; time seems to pass at the blink of an eye.

Vengeance Is Mine | On the heavier side of the St. Louis music scene, there is a lot going on. We have a handful of good metal bands, and Vengeance Is Mine is certainly one of them. This five-member group puts on one hell of a show every time they play, in part due to the strength and charisma of singer Mike Chumley. He moves around the stage with confidence, screaming into the microphone with so much rage that it’s impossible to sit at the bar and ignore the show. Chumley, who also contributes vocals to the local band Murder Happens, sounds great over the heavy guitar parts and thunderous drum rhythms. The musicianship in this band is quite good and the songs are so hard-hitting that head bangers should take any chance they can get to see a gig. Expect to be out of breath by the time the set ends.

Redding | Kevin Barry, lead vocalist/guitarist of the Lab, credits Redding as being one of his favorite local bands. After hearing them play, it’s easy to see why. This young four-piece from Belleville has a truly unique indie rock sound that makes going to a club to hear them a rewarding experience. Their sound is melodic and moody with irresistibly haunting guitar parts. Lead singer/guitarist Joseph Graves has the perfect voice for the music and gives a strong performance on every song. Redding manages to hold people’s attention throughout the night, from their musical introduction to their last song on the set list.

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