On Tuesday we announced the details of New Times' Carnaval Eléctrico at Crescent Ballroom, the festival which unites garage rocker Hanni El Khatib, psychedelic indie band Mergence, In the Valley Below, and headliners Cold War Kids on Friday, March 8, at Crescent Ballroom.
We promised there'd be more -- and guess what? We're pleased to announce three more excellent local acts: indie poppers Diners, the cosmic Wooden Indian, and Phoenix soul master Stan Devereaux & The Funky Suns.
Mesa-based Diners play chiming, melodic indie pop, and the group filled its 2012 release, Throw Me a Ten, with the kind of smart songwriting that hasn't worn at all with age.
"I started out with a vision of wanting it to be really lo-fi bedroom-pop songs," songwriter Tyler Broderick told Up on the Sun when we profiled them as part of the 10 Phoenix Bands You Need to Hear this Summer. "Then I was, like, that's a stupid idea. I should just have it be good quality and not try and hide."
Throw Me a Ten was recently reissued on cassette by local label Holy Page.
Wooden Indian's 2012 LP Color is Work stretches the distances between experimental obscurity and funky immediacy. It's an alchemy that takes a lot of work; it's easy to be distant and vague (which Wooden Indian's languid compositions often are), but it takes a special kind of skill to shift from that hazy lull into driving funk (check out "Expensive Fur").
"I think our music has a lot of range," explained songwriter Wally Boudway when Up on the Sun spoke with him.
"It moves between extremes of loud and quiet in a sort of manic way. It resembles love/hate and hot/cold. It's from the desert."
Stan Devereaux & the Funky Suns
R&B singer Stan Devereaux has been around the block, but it seems that more and more Phoenicians are catching on to the raw soul Devereaux and his combo, The Funky Suns, puts down.
"I've been around for a long time, off and on," Devereaux explained when Up on the Sun shot exclusive video of the Funky Suns covering Marvin Gaye's "Got to Give It Up" and Dyke and The Blazers Phoenix soul staple "Funky Broadway.
"I'm from here, and I'm a part of Arizona history and I've done R&B in this state for a long time. It has its ups and downs."
Right now, it's sounding more "up" than down.
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Expect more info on New Times' Carnaval Eléctrico in the coming weeks. Tickets for Carnaval Eléctrico go on sale Friday, January 18, at 10 a.m. via Crescent Ballroom's site. Limited tickets will be available for $10 during the first week of sales. After that, the price goes to $15 in advance, and $20 the day of the event.