New Music on the Way From John T. Baker, Jennifer Niceley, and More

Back in the 1990s, local bands used to release maybe a dozen or so CDs, cassettes, EPs, and vinyl issues of various sizes in a year. Most were recorded in home studios at considerable cost and effort, a rare few were released by actual record labels. Those were different times. Now the local music scene is besieged by music releases—CDs, digital downloads, and the occasional slab of real-deal vinyl. Senryu has probably released as many albums and EPs in the last two years as the entire Knoxville music community did in 1998.

Nowadays, it's more like a dozen local releases a month. A handful of notable local discs, in fact, are on the way this spring, starting with Woodgrain, a disc of loungy guitar pop from econopop leader and Westside Daredevils guitarist John T. Baker. Baker and a crew of guests will celebrate the release of Woodgrain with a free show on the sixth floor of the Sunsphere on Saturday, April 23, at 8 p.m.

Local indie-folk chanteuse Jennifer Niceley also has a new EP, Body + Soul, on the way. Recorded entirely on analog equipment in Nashville in March, the CD and 7-inch single should be available by the time of Niceley's performance at Pilot Light with Nashville's Altered Statesmen on Saturday, May 7. The night before that, on Friday, May 6, the quirky power pop band Faux Ferocious and veteran garage rock/R&B group the Vaygues will play Pilot Light to celebrate the release of vinyl-only EPs.

Prolific local musician Sevan Takvoryan and his new prog-rock band , Distant—featuring Takvoryan on guitar and vocals, Jon Augustus on bass, and David Whitaker on drums—will officially release their new self-titled CD at Preservation Pub on Wednesday, May 4, with openers Hey OK Fantastic.