oldboy
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“What’s old is new,” is a phrase that is easily applied to the local group of musicians known as Oldboy. The band is gearing up to release its first album, “Covered in Sound,” Nov. 3. Members of the roots-rock group have been playing together for the past three years, culminating in their first full-length album, recorded at Whiteout Audio in Cleveland. The album consists of 12 lyric-driven and meticulously crafted songs.

Oldboy will perform a record release concert with Family of the Year from Los Angeles. The local Cleveland band Dan Miraldi & the Albino Winos will also perform. The concert will be an all-ages show on Saturday, Nov. 3 at the Beachland Tavern in North Collinwood. Doors open at 8 p.m., and tickets are $10.

The current lineup for Oldboy is Shawn Brewster (songwriter, guitar, and vocals), Mike Kinsella (bass, backing vocals), Greg Hyland (drums), Pete Simon (guitar), Chris Volpe (banjo), and David Jenkins (percussion). While the band regularly rotates its lineup for different types of events, the release concert will feature six members who were involved in the recording.

As a band, the group’s sound is always changing, yet consistently driven by Brewster’s vision. He and Kinsella paired three years ago to begin making music. As Brewster recalled, “It was love at first harmony.” With influences such as R.E.M., Sonic Youth, and Tori Amos, Brewster said he tries to avoid being too “derivative of other bands” but prefers to “try to structure songs as strongly as the bands I listen to.” Such familiar influences make “Covered in Sound” into music that quickly resonates. Conversational lyrics lend an element of truth to the work, something Brewster describes as important to him. “Structure and honesty, two rules, make sure it’s an honest song,” he said.

While band members are busy as musicians, they are also involved in philanthropic endeavors throughout Greater Cleveland. Upcoming events include fundraisers for the Free Clinic, the Hunger Network, and Greater Cleveland Community Shares. Mike Kinsella, a resident of Cleveland Heights and FutureHeights board member, feels that giving back to his community is not only beneficial for the band as it “gets us in front of different audiences” but is also “a way I can give back. If we can help organizations raise money in that way, that’s what we do.”

Oldboy has been the house band for the Best of the Heights Awards, and the featured band for other community events. Oldboy performed at Coventry P.E.A.C.E. Park’s Music and Movies Under the Stars events, at the Cedar Fairmount Festival, and at the Wine Spot. Other venues at which the band has performed include the Tavern Company, the Grog Shop, B-Side Liquor Lounge, and Parnell’s Pub.

Oldboy’s work for the community reflects the work band members have done for themselves. The band is self-represented, is not on a label, designs its own posters, and books its own shows. Taking the grassroots approach to their music is reflected in the honest sound that the group produces. What’s old is certainly new in this “folk music repackaged” group. - the heights observer- by Elisabeth Farrer


What a great time Sunday as we finally got Old Boy into the Inner Sanctum studios. Shawn, Mike & Greg have put out one of our favorite new records and they are a total treat to talk to AND see live! You can catch them with a slew of other great bands this Saturday at Brite Winterfest in and all around Ohio City! Here is the whole line-up. - inner sanctum 87.7fm the sound


Hoping to capitalize on the Mumford & Sons and Avett Brothers zeitgeist, roots rock act Oldboy -- Mike Kinsella (bass), Chris Volpe (banjo), Greg Hyland (drums), Shawn Brewster (vocals, guitar) and Pete Simon (guitar) -- has high hopes for its full-length debut, "Covered in Sound."

"The biggest thing is to have something for online radio and hope it gets us opportunities we never had before," said Painesville resident Brewster, a 1995 Riverside High School graduate.

"Really, we're looking to see where it takes us. I never had something this good to push out there. This is definitely such a step up production-wise that I'm just really proud of it. I think our musicians are fantastic."

While the outfit has previously released EP "By the Light of the Moon" to its credit, Brewster said that was nothing more than a collection of songs, whereas "Covered in Sound" was created with an album format in mind. "We really just wanted to showcase the creative process," he said.

"This is a little more intimate folk-rock and some harder stuff too." Oldboy, which does a magical cover of Wilco's "A Shot in the Arm," has booked a CD release show for 8 p.m. Saturday at the Beachland Tavern, 15711 Waterloo Road, Cleveland. Family of the Year headlines, while Dan Miraldi & the Albino Winos open. Cover is $10. Call 216-383-1124. - cleveland.com (web)/ plain dealer (newspaper)


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