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A Houndmouth Homecoming at Carnegie

Story by Grant Vance | Photos by Grant Vance and Courtesy Photos

houndmouth3-300x137

Courtesy Photo

Homecoming is held to especially pertinent standards when it comes to the New Albany-based musicians comprising the rock group Houndmouth. A little bit of southern rock, gospel and folk help describe their style, but Carnegie Center for Art and History knows their sound isn’t simplified by the confines of genre.

“They’re all so grounded in New Albany. When they’re on national TV [Houndmouth doesn’t] say they’re from the Louisville area,” Sally Newkirk, director of the Carnegie Center, said. “They’re like ambassadors for New Albany.”

It’s a naturalistic aspect ingrained in their history, lead guitarist Matt Myers explained. “It wasn’t even something we thought about. It was just, like, this is where we’re from,” he said. “I guess it’s the Midwest in us. We can’t lie even a little bit.”houndmouth

The Carnegie Center’s Houndmouth exhibit celebrating the band’s “trajectory of success” opened Oct. 28 and runs through Jan. 21. The exhibit is being held in honor of Indiana’s Bicentennial year.

“We were thinking: What can we do that’s different? What can do to attract a younger audience?” Newkirk said, recalling the decision-making process for the exhibit. “So I said, ‘What if we come up with a theme of who’s making history now?’ Houndmouth was perfect.”

Houndmouth is a relatively young band, formed in 2011 and with only two studio albums: From the Hills Below the City (2013) and Little Neon Limelight (2015). They are a four-piece gone three-piece, with Matt Myers on guitar and vocals, Zak Appleby on bass and vocals and Shane Cody on drums and vocals. Katie Toupin, who formerly played keyboard as well as vocals, departed from the band in April of 2016 to “pursue other opportunities,” according to the band’s official statement on their website.

Despite their high profile status, the members of Houndmouth exude high levels of humility.

“(The exhibit is) very flattering,” Myers said.” “We were, like, super hesitant to do it at first.” Newkirk recalled the band’s “deer in the headlights” response when she first approached them about it.

“I was talking to (Shane Cody’s mom) Peggy later of the idea of us doing an exhibit on them because they houndmouth4really didn’t feel like what they had done warranted an exhibit,” Newkirk said. “I talked to them later and their first reaction (was), ‘Who would even come see it?’ ”

A busy and vibrant opening night would say otherwise. And to no surprise, considering their growing national recognition.

“Some of my favorite objects are just real unassuming, (like the) cue cards from (being on national TV with) Conan (O’Brien) and (David) Letterman,” Newkirk said. “They’re just pieces of paper that someone has written on. … They’re such unassuming artifacts, but the story they tell is awesome.”

The cue cards are a dynamic addition to the exhibit, but far from the epitome of all it has to offer. Carnegie Center has gone to great links to give an authentic Houndmouth experience, collaborating with everyone from music rights groups such as BMI (Broadcast Music, Inc.) to the band’s families to compile the different attractions, which range from pieces of the band’s clothing to pictures of the members growing up, all of which establish a true intimacy.houndmouth2

“We had to get permission from BMI to make sure we could play Houndmouth music for the three-month run of the show under the license that we currently have from them,” Newkirk said. “But really, we truly couldn’t have done it without the parents and spouses.”

“We left to go on tour and while we were gone, our girlfriends and family went through all our stuff and gave them all our stuff,” Myers said.

The attractions, of course, make the exhibit the intricate experience it is. This is not simply a hall of fame of Houndmouth to date. Rather, it encompasses the group’s artistic sensibilities through artifacts of their history while also offering interactive features, including music hubs granting access to their work, and a Guitar Hero-style game, incorporating a functioning guitar with a specially-developed program allowing users to play through three Houndmouth songs.

The interactive features add some flair, but it’s the intimate attractions grounded in simplicity that really draw home what Houndmouth means to the area. Not to mention their direct ties to the Carnegie Center.

“(Shane Cody’s) grandparents (and two great aunts) were the founders of the museum,” Newkirk explained. “John and B.B. Cody were the New Albany historians. If you had any questions about New Albany history, they were the go-to people.”

Within the exhibit is a room dedicated to some of the art dedicated by the Codys, including George W. Morrison’s New Albany from Silver Hills, which was used as the cover art for Houndmouth’s first LP, From the Hills Below the City.

“I never know how to answer (the question of New Albany’s influence on writing),” Myers said, “but definitely where you grew up affects the music you write. And where you write affects the music you get.”

Charlestown

Story and photos by JD Dotson

Once again, I am completely in awe of a place I thought I knew, only to be pleasantly surprised at every turn.  Charlestown quietly sits in Eastern Clark County and not knowing where I was going, I stopped in the first interesting place I came upon to ask questions and poke around. (By the way: Don’t forget to check out Charlestown during the Christmas season, beginning with Light Up Charlestown on the Friday after Thanksgiving.)

rocks bird

The CHARLESTOWN FEED STORE 

11106 Dean St. | On Highway 62 Near Highway 3 | 812.256.2048 | charlestownfeedstore.com

Sitting outside the Charlestown Feed Store was an old giant wagon, shining with color, with row upon row of raw West Virginia glass. I took it as a sign to see what other things – beside feed – I could find at the feed store. I met a beautiful parrot named Goldie, saw the largest collection of vintage coolers and got some good information and stories from Luke, who works at the store. I heard the legend of the haunted Seven Penny Bridge, (or Ten Penny Bridge, if you search online) and got directions to the Nine Penny Branch Nature Preserve. Still, I was sure I had more pennies in the floorboard of my car, and I headed out to explore Charlestown.

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CHARLESTOWN STATE PARK 

12500 Indiana 62 | 812.256.5600 | www.in.gov/dnr/parklake/2986.htm | $7 entry fee

Charlestown State Park sits just off Hwy 62 on 5,100 acres of land formerly belonging to the Indiana Army Ammunition Plant, and on the banks of the Ohio River. The park boasts several marked trails rated moderate to rugged and ruins of ammunition plants in the hills.  I began my adventure at the Riverside Overlook and trail No. 6 which immediately had me running up a steep, rocky ascent. Once I cleared the climb, my run had me along the ridge of the woods with a steep drop-off and the most spectacular view in the park of the river. It was at once both terrifying and beautiful, quiet on the path and breathtaking. I kept the course which wound me back down to creek beds and back up. I was easily distracted by bits of a ruin which took me off trail and off course, just a bit lost but reveling in the adventure of trying to reconnect with my path. Eventually, I found my way back to my car and to my map to Rose Island. I have heard of Rose Island since my childhood. My Granny lived down the road, worked in the ammunition plant and told of picnics at the popular amusement park. In the 1920s, the park, only accessible by steamboat, ferry or a suspension bridge, boasted a small zoo, a pool, shooting gallery, dance hall, cafeteria, ferris wheel and roller coaster and hotel. The Depression closed the park temporarily and the flood of 1937 destroyed the park entirely. These days a short hike down the steep, paved hill and crossing over the Porterville Bridge will drop you at the entrance of Rose Island. There are a lot of really remarkable ruins and historic markers guiding you along the paths with photographs of what once belonged here. A bit of imagination helped to fill in the river banks with thousands of people bustling around the peninsula on a beautiful day. I explored Rose Island quite a bit, knowing I was stalling the run back to my car. At the end of this trip, I will have run 10 miles and the last leg was up another steep incline. As a reward, I asked some fellow explorers a bit of advice on what food I should stuff in my face.

otharocks distantclearing

NINE PENNY BRANCH STATE NATURE PRESERVE 

3143, 3019 Tunnel Mill Rd

The back roads of Charlestown are peaceful, curvy and perfect for a gorgeous Saturday drive. I wound my way down Tunnel Mill Road and took in the sights, the hills and woods, farms and fields. The Nine Penny Branch Nature Preserve sits just off the road with a small parking lot and a path leading you away. A quarter of a mile in and you are really alone and seemingly far from civilization. The path curves and slopes down, winding back and forth between trees and vines. I came to a rough-hewn rock bench high above a creek below and spared a few minutes to sit and enjoy the solitude. Eventually, I made my way down the path across a bridge and eventually into the creek bed. It was an easy mile in and a rough run back uphill to get out.

pizza

THE CHARLESTOWN PIZZA COMPANY

850 Main St. 812.256.2699 | www.ctownpizzaco.com

I met a trio in the ruins and immediately the Charlestown Pizza Company sprang out as the best pizza in the area. As if I need any more of an excuse to visit a good pizza place, the next bit of advice had me hooked instantly.: “You have to get the Mashed Potato Pie,” said Morgan Cooke, and I thanked her for ruining my diet because I was certain that is exactly what I was going to get. I ran extra hard off the paved path through the woods, pushing myself thinking about all those calories I was about to ingest. The restaurant sits off the square in the heart of Charlestown. The menu description is as follows: “The Mashed Potato Pie: sauced with garlic butter, then a hearty layer of mashed potato, bacon and cheddar cheese and finished with diced green onions. Served with your choice of one sauce on the side.” It is a perfect amalgamation of pizza and baked potatoes, and fell right out of comfort food heaven and into my belly.

A Houndmouth Homecoming at Carnegie

Story by Grant Vance | Photos by Grant Vance and Courtesy Photos

<img class=”size-medium wp-image-6704″ src=”http://b93.289.myftpupload.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/Houndmouth3-300×137.png” alt=”Courtesy Photo ” width=”300″ height=”137″ /> Courtesy Photo

Homecoming is held to especially pertinent standards when it comes to the New Albany-based musicians comprising the rock group Houndmouth. A little bit of southern rock, gospel and folk help describe their style, but Carnegie Center for Art and History knows their sound isn’t simplified by the confines of genre.

“They’re all so grounded in New Albany. When they’re on national TV [Houndmouth doesn’t] say they’re from the Louisville area,” Sally Newkirk, director of the Carnegie Center, said. “They’re like ambassadors for New Albany.”

It’s a naturalistic aspect ingrained in their history, lead guitarist Matt Myers explained. “It wasn’t even something we thought about. It was just, like, this is where we’re from,” he said. “I guess it’s the Midwest in us. We can’t lie even a little bit.”<img class=”size-medium wp-image-6706 alignright” src=”http://b93.289.myftpupload.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/Houndmouth-300×171.png” alt=”houndmouth” width=”300″ height=”171″ />

The Carnegie Center’s Houndmouth exhibit celebrating the band’s “trajectory of success” opened Oct. 28 and runs through Jan. 21. The exhibit is being held in honor of Indiana’s Bicentennial year.

“We were thinking: What can we do that’s different? What can do to attract a younger audience?” Newkirk said, recalling the decision-making process for the exhibit. “So I said, ‘What if we come up with a theme of who’s making history now?’ Houndmouth was perfect.”

Houndmouth is a relatively young band, formed in 2011 and with only two studio albums: From the Hills Below the City (2013) and Little Neon Limelight (2015). They are a four-piece gone three-piece, with Matt Myers on guitar and vocals, Zak Appleby on bass and vocals and Shane Cody on drums and vocals. Katie Toupin, who formerly played keyboard as well as vocals, departed from the band in April of 2016 to “pursue other opportunities,” according to the band’s official statement on their website.

Despite their high profile status, the members of Houndmouth exude high levels of humility.

“(The exhibit is) very flattering,” Myers said.” “We were, like, super hesitant to do it at first.” Newkirk recalled the band’s “deer in the headlights” response when she first approached them about it.

“I was talking to (Shane Cody’s mom) Peggy later of the idea of us doing an exhibit on them because they <img class=”size-medium wp-image-6707 alignleft” src=”http://b93.289.myftpupload.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/Houndmouth4-300×191.png” alt=”houndmouth4″ width=”300″ height=”191″ />really didn’t feel like what they had done warranted an exhibit,” Newkirk said. “I talked to them later and their first reaction (was), ‘Who would even come see it?’ ”

A busy and vibrant opening night would say otherwise. And to no surprise, considering their growing national recognition.

“Some of my favorite objects are just real unassuming, (like the) cue cards from (being on national TV with) Conan (O’Brien) and (David) Letterman,” Newkirk said. “They’re just pieces of paper that someone has written on. … They’re such unassuming artifacts, but the story they tell is awesome.”

The cue cards are a dynamic addition to the exhibit, but far from the epitome of all it has to offer. Carnegie Center has gone to great links to give an authentic Houndmouth experience, collaborating with everyone from music rights groups such as BMI (Broadcast Music, Inc.) to the band’s families to compile the different attractions, which range from pieces of the band’s clothing to pictures of the members growing up, all of which establish a true intimacy.<img class=” wp-image-6705 alignright” src=”http://b93.289.myftpupload.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/Houndmouth2-300×241.png” alt=”houndmouth2″ width=”228″ height=”183″ />

“We had to get permission from BMI to make sure we could play Houndmouth music for the three-month run of the show under the license that we currently have from them,” Newkirk said. “But really, we truly couldn’t have done it without the parents and spouses.”

“We left to go on tour and while we were gone, our girlfriends and family went through all our stuff and gave them all our stuff,” Myers said.

The attractions, of course, make the exhibit the intricate experience it is. This is not simply a hall of fame of Houndmouth to date. Rather, it encompasses the group’s artistic sensibilities through artifacts of their history while also offering interactive features, including music hubs granting access to their work, and a Guitar Hero-style game, incorporating a functioning guitar with a specially-developed program allowing users to play through three Houndmouth songs.

The interactive features add some flair, but it’s the intimate attractions grounded in simplicity that really draw home what Houndmouth means to the area. Not to mention their direct ties to the Carnegie Center.

“(Shane Cody’s) grandparents (and two great aunts) were the founders of the museum,” Newkirk explained. “John and B.B. Cody were the New Albany historians. If you had any questions about New Albany history, they were the go-to people.”

Within the exhibit is a room dedicated to some of the art dedicated by the Codys, including George W. Morrison’s New Albany from Silver Hills, which was used as the cover art for Houndmouth’s first LP, From the Hills Below the City.

“I never know how to answer (the question of New Albany’s influence on writing),” Myers said, “but definitely where you grew up affects the music you write. And where you write affects the music you get.”

Extol TV | Launch Party Promo

Get ready, folks: it’s time for a spooky, Thursday the 13th Extol launch party at Floyd County Brewing Company.

Fun starts at 5:30pm, coming full throttle with complimentary appetizers, give-a-ways & good wholesome medieval fun. Not to mention the debut of Extol TV’s first ever live broadcast. Wild times at Extol mag.

Please check out the promo below. Hope to see you there. Enjoy.

 

PRESS RELEASE | Dial M for Murder at Derby Dinner

Left to right: Brian Bowman as Max, Cary Wiger as Tony (front), and Tina Jo Wallace as Margot

 

Derby Dinner Playhouse will present the thriller DIAL “M” FOR MURDER, opening October 5 and running through November 13, 2016.  For ticket information please call 812.288.8281 or visit www.derbydinner.com 

Tony’s plot to murder his cheating wife Margot for her money goes awry when Margot kills her would-be assailant in self-defense.  Now Tony has to improvise his plan and schemes to frame his wife for premeditated murder.  Can Margot’s ex-lover Max solve the mystery and discover the truth before she is hanged for the crime?  DIAL “M” FOR MURDER is a thrilling and suspenseful murder mystery that will keep you guessing until the very last moment!

DIAL “M” FOR MURDER was written by Frederick Knott and was the basis for the 1954 American crime thriller film directed by Alfred Hitchcock and starring Grace Kelly.  Derby Dinner’s production is under the direction of and produced by Bekki Jo Schneider.  The cast will include Tina Jo Wallace, Brian Bowman, Cary Wiger, David Myers, and J.R. Stuart.