Raven 'The Duke of Dark'
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Raven 'The Duke of Dark'

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This band has not uploaded any videos



"Raven CD Release Party June 12, 2003"

By: David de Young

Whether you've heard of him or not, Raven is a veritable rock hero who lives right here in the Twin Cities, and he has a prominent fan club based in the UK, where his star shines a bit brighter than in his own backyard.

Part punk rocker, part rock star, part rockabilly guitar slinger (think the Cramps, yes definitely the Cramps). Raven seems to be equally filled with the spirit of the Stranglers, Bruce Springsteen, Bryan Ferry, and Paul Westerberg. Hearing his set evolve at Lee's last night I was moved by Raven's many personalities and the multiple genre's from which he draws.

His all-star band opened with Bob Dylan's "This wheel's on fire" sung beautifully by Astronaut Wife's Janey Winterbauer. It was a strong start to a powerful 16 song set. And yes, that was Peter Anderson (The Honey Dogs, Ocean Blue, Polara) behind the drum set.

He proceeded to play a few more songs from his new disc (Boom!) in sequence (I love it when musicians do this at CD release shows as it makes it easy for a reviewer to cover both show and CD in one fell swoop). "Conviction of love" had a groovy guitar start and featured Glenn Graham on Sax. There's no doubt that Raven has a true punk rock heart the likes of which I'm not
sure I've ever encountered in the flesh. You simply can't help but love this fella.

By the song "Status Quo", I noticed something that I always look for in a good rock show, I was enjoying myself so much I'd forgotten where I was and noticed I hadn't even looked around the club in a while. Raven draws you into his experience because he has such a passion about his music, and it shines brightly through. It's something I wish more bands exhibited, a heartfelt love for the job they do.

"Afterthought" had Raven's 60's pop heart out there on his sleeve, and upon it's ending, he quickly switched gears and downloaded into a "swingabilly" number based on his encounters with Absolutely Fabulous star-Julia Sawalha, which once was (and may still be) the love of his life.

After a few more from said disc, he offered up a cover song, from one of his "mates"-Suzi Quatro. Suzi was once in an all girl band called "The Pleasure Seekers", and Raven proceeded to tear into their 1965 song "What a way to die", and the dance for looked like an outtake from "American Bandstand", jammed with high-steppin', hip-shakers.

"Someone she knows", found Glenn Graham switching to acoustic guitar, and one time Gene Pitney bassist, Jeff Willkomm coming up for 4 string chores. Keyboardist Jon Larson offered up a shimmering piano solo, reminisent of David J.

With "Almost Glow", Raven brought up old friend Marv Gohman to assist him on violin for a sad song about losing a New York flight attendant to an Irishman outside the Half Moon Pub in Putney, and long walk back to his hotel in Holland Park, which he wrote in his head enroute.

With that he left the stage, only to be roundly begged back with a chorus of applause, to which he responded with an earlier effort of his titled "What's wrong with us?"
A great end to a great show by a great guy! - Howwastheshow.com


12 Bar Club WC2 8pm 5 pounds
Minneapolis garage rocker Raven headlines, joined by 'Headcoatee' Holly Golightly and alumnus of The Solar Flares and The Milkshakes. - Time Out London November 13-20 2002



Hailing from Minnesota, 'The Duke of Dark' (as described by his UK Keyboard player, Parsley) cites his influences as Scott Walker, Bruce Springsteen and Cliff Richard! Since 1999 (the year of his 1st cd release), he has dispersed a musical cloud, which erupts with thunderous songs of personal angst and illuminates in warnings of an upside down society. On Saturday, December 1st, he headlines a night which includes the talents of Wreckless Eric protege-The Hungy Dog Brand, and Art Rocker's-Glass Glue. This will be an eclectic event not to be missed, and as Raven always brings in a mighty crowd, you should get there plenty early! - 12 Bar inhouse December 1st, 2006


Flyer - Simon Topliss


LP-Boom! (2003)
EP-Awaken (2005)
CD Single 'Drury Lane' b/w 'If the sun's gonna shine' (2009)

My songs have made their way to certain local indie and area college radio, but nothing on a national level, save for Paul Jones (of the blues and pop group, The Manfreds) playing one of my songs on one of his BBC radio programs in 2006).



I am actually a solo artist, who has the good fortune of not one, but two backing bands comprised of extreme talent, who have faith in both my music and it's reach. I have a 'Holy Trinity' whose music and perseverance, I have long admired, and I draw elements of each, they being: Bruce Springsteen, Cliff Richard and Scott Walker. In Bruce I find 'triumph and redemption', Cliff represents 'spiritual guidance and generosity', and Scott brings 'exploration & ambitious texture'. Though virtually no connection with each other's musical paths, I find they share (2) common bonds-Powerful voices, and extreme passion, and on that I truly aspire. My music has always been aggressive, but not until 2005 did it all come together, when Parsley coined me 'The Duke of Dark'. His somewhat good jestured comment regarding my persona, actually awoke the sleeping giant which was lurking beneath the surface of my music. Mine is quite an eye to eye sort of approach, where I attempt to form connection between myself and the audience, through the clearly disturbed lyrical observations I bestow. I believe 'Honesty' is found within both my performance and writing, and it's that which the listener can look forward to. I've also had the extreme good fortune of serving in the employ of 60's pop star Bobby Vee for 6 years, and in agreement with what Bob Dylan (who served for 6 shows as Bob's Pianist in 1959) once said "I learned a lot about the music business from Bobby Vee"! My gratitude Sir! I also must thank The Beastie Boys for their allowance into their Lollapalozza and Tibetan Freedom shows, they too, shone a light in which I remain forever grateful.