Written by Alexis Faye. 

Huntington, West Virginia, has a thriving music scene. So much so, that thriving might be an understatement. On any given day of the week, you can usually hit multiple venues and be treated to some type of live music. That’s a big part of what makes living in the Jewel City so special.

To kick off this new year, I thought I would share a list of five bands that, in my humble opinion, have huge things planned for this year. Some of them might be favorites already and some may be new to you. Regardless, I strongly urge you to check each and every one of them out and pay attention.



 

5. RAT SHIP

Promotional photo.

Genre: Punk rock

Band Members:

Robo (bass, vocals), Cody (drums), Garrett (guitar, vocals)

Goals for 2018:

The band is working on six new songs and are working on writing more for a record to tentatively be released via cassette and digitally. They are also booking weekends and possibly a tour for late spring/early summer.

Influences:

I asked Cody and he said someone told him they sounded like Fugazi if Fugazi was heavy and fast.

Upcoming Shows:

1/25: Press Club – Huntington, WV

I’ve never had the pleasure of seeing Rat Ship live, but I’ve watched videos and have listened to them countless times and they bring it—every single time. They enjoy putting their own twist on things by sort of being a mixture of a lot of different sounds that have been accumulated over the past 20 years. Be sure and check out their Facebook page and Bandcamp.

https://www.facebook.com/ratship/

https://ratship.bandcamp.com/

4. HOLLY & THE GUY

Photo: Alexis Faye

Genre: Acoustic, Pop

Band Members:

Holly (vocals, keys), Seth (guitar, vocals), Colten (lead guitar, vocals), Mike (bass, vocals), James (drums)

Goals for 2018:

The band is hoping to record their first full-length album to release before summer. They will continue to play live shows to promote the album and just generally build and connect with their fan base.

Influences:

Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder and Aretha Franklin

Upcoming shows:

Not many on the calendar for now, they are focusing more on writing and recording.

I wish I could remember the first time I heard the duo (Holly and Seth) but I know I was no doubt blown away because Holly has major pipes. I love the way they cover pop songs and make them their own. Stay tuned to them for an exciting year.

https://www.facebook.com/hollyandtheguy/

3. CREEK DON’T RISE

Photo: Tim Preston

Genre: Soul, Blues, Rock

Band members:

Marcus (guitar, vocals), Jerry (guitar), Rebecca (bass), Hogan (drums)

Goals for 2018:

They recorded in Athens, OH with Eddie Ashworth last summer and are releasing an EP, titled “Sometimes it Rains” in March. Their release party is scheduled for 3/23 at the Boulevard Tavern in Charleston, WV. The general plan for 2018 is to continue playing shows around the tri-state while continuing to write and record. They are also hoping to continue to expand their fan base. Clocking in with 120 shows for 2017, along with winning the Huntington Blues Society Challenge, they are hoping to match or exceed that number and play bigger stages this year.

Influences:

The Allman Brothers, Led Zeppelin, Ray Charles

Upcoming Shows:

EP Release Party: 3/23: The Boulevard Tavern – Charleston, WV

This band is making some major noise in the tri-state. They currently have an Indiegogo.com campaign to help fund their EP, and are on the bill for a couple of festivals this year, so they can only improve. Be sure to keep up with them on Facebook and throw them some dollars if you’re inclined.

https://www.facebook.com/CreekDontRise.Band/

https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/sometimes-it-rains-ep-music-rock#/

2. FLAT TRACKER

Photo: Most Exalted

Genre: Rock and roll

Band members:

Jeremy (vocals, guitar), Jordan (guitar), Ryan (guitar, vocals), Jared (bass), Nick (drums, vocals)

Goals for 2018:

Recording a currently untitled record with Brian Hensley for a spring release. The band is currently booked to play a couple of festivals and are hoping to add more to the roster in2018. Jeremy says the most important thing they want to happen this year, apart from the record, is to get the band out there more: more media attention, better social media presence and to play as much as possible.

Upcoming shows:

2/3 : The V-Club – Huntington, WV

Influences:

Bruce Springsteen, Creedence Clearwater Revival and Neil Young

I’m incredibly proud of everything these guys have accomplished in the short time they’ve been a band. As someone who has been around since they were a trio, I can definitely say that they just get better each and every single time. I’m really looking forward to seeing what all Flat Tracker accomplishes in 2018.

https://www.facebook.com/flattracker304/



1. DUCAIN

Photo: Jess Keathley

Genre: Rock and roll, Americana

Band members:

Jeremy (vocals, guitar), Austin (lead guitar), Jared (drums, vocals), Rich (bass, keyboards)

Goals for 2018:

Ducain has a huge year planned. Starting at the end of January, they are going to be recording with Bud Carroll. They plan to release 3 EP’s throughout the year and then combine those EP’s to cultimate a full length album. They are planning a full release with digital downloads and CD’s (fingers crossed for vinyl). They will be partnering with local photographer/videographer Melissa Stilwell to document the recording process for the first EP. They’re looking forward to doing all this while continuing to play as many shows as possible in as many states as possible.

Upcoming shows:

2/3 : V-Club – Huntington, WV

2/9: Press Club – Huntington, WV

Influences:

American Minor, Kings of Leon, Free

I feel a little late to the party on this talented group of guys. The first time I saw them was at one of the 2017 Huntington Music and Arts Festival events. I was blown away and left wondering where they had been hiding. Since then, they’ve seemed to rocket in popularity, from an outsider’s perspective. I just really love their sound, their passion, and you would have a really hard time finding a more genuine group of young men. I’m really looking forward to watching their plans unfold and helping in whatever way I can.

I’m excited (maybe overly so) about all of these projects. Proud of what they all have already accomplished and proud of what I know the year has in store for all of them.

https://www.facebook.com/ducainband/

https://ducain.bandcamp.com/releases

 

Do you agree with my list? Why or why not? Leave me some feedback. Also let me know if you have any ideas on what you’d like to read about. Give me a band or a show to profile and I’ll make it happen. Thanks for reading as always!

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