1 A.M. Doorway

Nominated for: Best Hip-Hop (Group)

Doorway's tale begins in Fairview Heights, Illinois, with members Nick Menn, L-Gifted, RT-FaQ and SD TheDizzleMan, who, after years of avid wordsmithing, decided to create an artist collective dedicated to hip-hop. Although each individual artist boasts a unique personality and sonic palette, they all share a devotion to sincerity and honesty, which can be seen in the messages and themes of their music. Doorway couples its members' humble attitudes with a brazen consciousness that provides the spark for its music; the group's lyricism and sound is a study in poignancy and ingenuity that easily covers all angles of rap. As a group, Doorway has created multiple solo and joint efforts and only continues to grow. — Tara Mahadevan

HANDLEBAR

4 P.M. The Trophy Mules

Nominated for: Best Country

Corey Saathoff first made a name in St. Louis as part of alt-country band Jerkwater Junction and as leader of jangle-rockers Brain Regiment, but he's really hit his stride as a songwriter fronting the Trophy Mules, a flexible country-rock outfit featuring mandolin and guitar picker Larry Rosenhoffer and pedal-steel ace Scott Swartz. Saathoff doesn't write predictable alt-country fare — if there are booze and broken hearts in his songs, they're part of his stories. His style is impressionistic in the best sense, as evocative of the songs of R.E.M. as those of Jay Farrar. — Roy Kasten

5 P.M. The Defeated County

Nominated for: Best Americana

Langen Neubacher's voice is hard to pin down. Maybe a less precious Eleanor Friedberger or a folksy Kim Gordon? The music of her outfit the Defeated County is similarly defiant, a loosely organized exploration of dark folk themes with arrangements blurring the line between decisions and mistakes. It should be noted that Neubacher proudly owns the adjective "creepy" when describing her band. If "Americana" seems an ill-fitting category, just consider that whole melting-pot cliché — easy to do, because Langen Neubacher mischievously stirring a cauldron is not much of a stretch. — Ryan Wasoba

6 P.M. Indian Blanket

Nominated for: Best Folk

How do you discuss Indian Blanket without mentioning the Lion's Daughter in the same breath? Well, you don't. The pair collaborated for A Black Sea, a folk-metal record and last year's most intriguing local album. The unlikely combination worked because Indian Blanket's version of folk is dark, doomy and heavy in the same manner as Neil Young. There's nothing cute about principal songwriter Joe Andert's voice, an often twangless tenor that lets the tragedy of his lyrics emote for themselves. Listeners who revel in the darkness of Will Oldham will find comfort in Indian Blanket, but those excavating these nominees to find a local foil for their love of Mumford & Sons are advised to look elsewhere. — Ryan Wasoba

7 P.M. Dave Stone Trio

Nominated for: Best Jazz

If you've never heard of Dave Stone, you are out of the loop. In addition to his more than twenty years of contributions to St. Louis' noise and free-improvisation scenes, Stone's trio — composed of himself, bassist Bob DeBoo and drummer Kyle Honeycutt — has got to be breaking some kind of record with its nineteen-year-long Friday night residency at Mangia Italiano. The pianoless trio — all three accomplished players in their own right — slays standards, throwing in the odd original and even a bit of free playing. If you're a jazz fan and you haven't yet seen the Dave Stone Trio, cancel your plans this Friday and head to Mangia. You won't regret it. — Nick Horn

8 P.M. Eric Hall

Nominated for: Best Electronic (Eclectic)

A coworker of Eric Hall once asked, "Are you a musician?" Hall reportedly replied, "No, where did you hear that?" A more accurate title for Hall may be "sonic artist," even though we wish more musicians shared his consciousness of texture and timbre. For Eric Hall, any intentional or aleatoric noise can be electronically mangled into the spontaneous compositions of a 22nd-century orchestra. Hall furthers his each-sound-is-precious aesthetic by documenting nearly every live performance and posting the results to his Bandcamp page. For a lesser non-musician, this habit could resemble social-media oversharing, but keeping up with Eric Hall online is more like following a forward-thinking electronic-music blog than looking at pictures of your friend's salad. — Ryan Wasoba

9 P.M. Syna So Pro

Nominated for: Best Pop

Dancing isn't technically part of Syrhea Conaway's job description as Syna So Pro. But when Conaway juggles guitars, violins and keyboard while singing and striking loop and effect pedals, it's hard to think of a Syna So Pro performance as anything less than a ballet. Newer songs typically spin out from a simple major-key riff into either atmospheric webs of melodies or stormy fuzzed-out rockers. Conaway then cuts through these dense sound clouds with a sonorous voice that possesses incredible range. The combined effect of all these elements is a feeling of both liberating release and a soothing sense of calm. — Bob McMahon

10 P.M. Old Salt Union

Nominated for: Best Country

It's hard not to be impressed with Old Salt Union's rise as one of the most successful of the young newgrassers in Greater St. Louis. Its members started out as kids, and they're still kids at heart, but they take their acoustic music seriously while still having a hell of a lot of fun. Along with playing every banjo-friendly festival this side of Telluride, OSU will be joining LouFest's 2014 lineup. The band also just got back from Nashville, where it finished recording its second album, funded by a $16,000 Kickstarter campaign. In other words, Old Crow Medicine Show should keep one eye on the road and one eye in its rearview mirror. Serious competition from Belleville, Illinois, is on the way. — Roy Kasten

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