Doug, Mikey and ScottThere’s just something so weird to me about being able to catch great live music every single day of the week. It’s actually more overwhelming than I’d care to admit, especially considering that something as great as live music should never be anything that overwhelmes anyone with anything but positive emotions. Makes sense?

Last Wednesday night, my crew and I went to check out our friends play in Akasha, a band of four featuring one jah-flavored singer/rapper, one funky/noisy/bluesy lead guitar, and one rhythm section comprised of an upright bassist and drummer that hardly ever let go of a solid, funk/hip-hop backbeat (in the most disgusting way possible).

While that may sum up the band, it definitely doesn’t do much to describe the music that they play. With a weird and somehow logical mix of dirty-dub reggae grooves, soaring rock vignettes, and hip-hop-flavored blues rock (both loud and soft), Akasha’s sound is not one that you can ever easily describe. I know bands that would pay for that kind of unclassifiable sound…

Cosmos Ray with Dude Scott

This was my first time catching this band, and certainly not the last. They came out strong with two really solid songs to lead into the set–I really, really enjoyed both of these songs. Really, really. They also nailed a cover of Rocky Raccoon that got the Depaul college crowd reinterested in the music as opposed to socializing.

In their defense, I think the promoter might have gotten the fliers wrong here. I thought the opener was the closer, Akasha was sandwiched as second up, and The Lymbyc Systym was supposed to headline and play third. I was beat and didn’t stay for the Lymbyc Systym (even though I should have, these guys rip) and I was pleased as punch by the end of Akasha’s great set.

This is one of their first as a band, too. They’ve recently formed from the offshoot of a band known as The Shift, but the drummer and lead come from different spots, too. Mikey (drummer) actually plays for my were they and Cosmos (lead vox) also does vocal duties for Starpeople.

Doug and Mikey Cosmos Ray

Akasha is:
Cosmos Ray – vox, guitar
Scottie B. – guitar, vox
Doug Bistrow – upright bass
Mikey August – drums

I’ll update this once I get the recording and any updates on show dates from the band. For all you Chicago heads, this is one band that will surely get your ass movin’. Support your local bands and go catch Akasha before they’re not local anymore.