Support Local Journalism. Join Riverfront Times Press Club.

Smokestack 

Saturday, Jan. 19; Cicero's

Everything's new in Chuck Newsome's world. With a brand-new CD in hand and a fresh batch of even newer material in his shirt pocket, the 24-year-old guitarist and his band Smokestack are traveling the rock & roll highway, performing nightly in strange towns and winning over new fans with their groovy improvisation-based rock. "We're branching out all over now," says Newsome, who wrote several of the tunes on Smokestack's independently released debut, It's Coming Down. "It's really cool having solidified the group of songs on the CD, but now we're writing a lot of new material and debuting it at shows."

Unlike some bands that crank out new material the easy way, by reworking old ideas, Newsome's two most recent creations reflect Smokestack's ongoing musical explorations. "'Chased by Rodents' is kind of a funk-driven instrumental with lots of odd meter things going on," Newsome remarks. "I don't really write a whole lot of lyrics, but for another new song, called 'Porch,' which I wrote on the porch of my girlfriend's house, they just came straight out. It's about confusion and love, stuff like that, which is a different theme for our band. We're not always incredibly introspective."

Based in Ann Arbor, Mich., Smokestack has earned a loyal regional following throughout the Midwest. Now the band is determined to build a national fanbase. "This will be our first show in St. Louis," Newsome notes. "People seeing us for the first time are going to get a high-energy show that's filled with lots of groove. For us, rhythm is a celebration of the soul, so they're going to get a lot of groove, a lot of energy and interesting music!"

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Riverfront Times Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Riverfront Times Club for as little as $5 a month.

Latest in Critics' Picks

More by Lee Abraham

Read the Digital Print Issue

September 22, 2021

View more issues

Newsletters

Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

Best Things to Do In St. Louis

© 2021 Riverfront Times

Website powered by Foundation