Aquabear County Fair 2015 is October 22-25 in Athens, Ohio

The 9th annual Aquabear County Fair features 19 bands on October 22-25 in Athens, Ohio!

Our own little County Fair is really starting to grow up (sniff), this year marks it’s 9th birthday and we are celebrating October 22-25 in beautiful, scenic Athens, Ohio! Over 18 acts are playing over 4 days with 2 bar shows, 2 house shows, and a experimental music show at a record store. THURSDAY, OCTOBER 22 at 8:00pm is the County Fair Kickoff at The Bat Lounge w/ Bad Luck (washington), Marina Peterson (athens), and Girl Colors (athens), please bring donations for the bands. FRIDAY, OCTOBER 23 at 10:00pm is at Jackie O’s Public House with We March (athens), Kyle Sowashes (columbus), Palestras (cleveland), and Slackluster (athens) with a $5 cover. SATURDAY, OCTOBER 24 at 6:00pm is the Nobrow Sound Series at Haffa’s Records with Pete Fosco (cincinnati), Tim Feeney (alabama), Weedghost (fairborn/athens), Nobrow.collective (athens), and bring a $7 donation for the bands. SATURDAY, OCTOBER 24 at 10:30pm is a FREE show at Casa Cantina with Blam Blams (athens), The Bygones (columbus), Supernobody (athens), and Water Witches (athens). And we finish up on SUNDAY, OCTOBER 25 at 4:00pm with a show at The Hen House with Dead Hand of Man (athens), Unmonumental (athens), Sardukar (athens), and Dead Winds of Summer (athens), bring some donations for the bands for that one. We’re gonna try to grill up some food too! There will be copies of the 2LP Aquabear Legion Volume 5 record for sale (only $20!) along with amazing limited edition Aquabear Legion screenprints from Charlie Touvell, and new t-shirts and sweatshirts too! See you all at the Fair.

Thursday, October 22nd at 8:00pm
Kickoff at The Bat Lounge – Donations
(e-mail for info)
Bad Luck (last), Marina Peterson (second), Girl Colors (first)

Friday, October 23rd at 10:00pm
Jackie O’s Public House (W. Union Street) – $5

10:00pm:   Slackluster
11:00pm:   Palestras
12:00am:   The Kyle Sowashes
1:00am:     We March

Saturday, October 24th at 10:30pm
Casa Cantina – FREE!

10:30pm:   Water Witches
11:15pm:   Supernobody
12:00am:   The Bygones
1:00am:     Blam Blams

Saturday, October 24th at 6:00pm
Haffa’s Records (15 W. Union Street) – $7 suggested donation

Tim Feeney, Pete Fosco, Weedghost, Nobrow.collective

Sunday, October 25th at 4:00pm
Aquabear-B-Q at The Hen House – Donations
(e-mail for info)

4:00pm:    Sardukar
5:00pm:    Dead Winds of Summer
5:15pm:    Unmonumental
6:00pm:    Dead Hand of Man

Best of Ohio 2012: Part Three

volume-2-comp-250x250Aquabear is kicking off a brand new year-end tradition by asking some of the state’s best musicians and music related folks to share their favorite Ohio music finds and experiences of the year. Look for a whole bunch of these before the start of 2013! Here’s the second batch featuring Nathan Moore (Yellow Springs/Athens – Sportfishing USA, Hex Net), Brett Helling (Columbus – The Cabdrivers, Winter Makes Sailors),  AJ Hitmar (Athens – Dark Circles Records), Dave Straub (Cleveland – Burger Boys, HOMeOwners, McShitz), Jessica Makosky (Athens – The Revulvas, Whip & Tickle). Look for more in the coming weeks and please share, if you would like to participate drop us a line at


Nathan Moore
Yellow Springs / Athens  (Sportfishing USA, Hex Net, Teen Age)

What were your favorite Ohio releases from 2012?
Valleyboys – Chronic Youth. I’ve been nagging Chris Lute to put this out for two years, It was worth the wait, and it sounds GREAT!

Favorite new Ohio band
Hyrrokkin. This power trio is one of the most incredible bands I’ve ever seen. Instrumental, weird time signature rock, played by free-jazz aficionados. They are putting out a new full length soon.

Favorite Ohio show you saw this year
Pierced Arrows at the Union in Athens, OH in April. I couldn’t stop smiling during their set.

What are you most excited about for 2013?
Putting out a new full length Sport Fishing USA album!

What have you been working on lately?
Sport Fishing USA just finished tracking drums for a few brand new songs. We are overdubbing like hell. I’ve been spending a lot of time writing new songs and recording them on this little cassette 4-track machine. I love being limited to 4 tracks, it makes me write better songs.

What are you listening to right now?
“Mature Themes” by Ariel Pink. These songs are starting to make me insane though, I keep finding myself singing “bad breath on the cross eye guards” while I’m checking out at the grocery store.

Brett Helling
Columbus (The Cabdrivers, Winter Makes Sailors, The Kyle Sowashes, Swimsuit Edition)

What were your favorite Ohio releases from 2012?
THE WHILES – “Somber Honey” Hands down my favorite album of the year…Ohio and beyond. It’s concise, warm, distant, melodic, and incredibly addictive. WATERSHED – “Brick And Mortar” Always been a big Watershed fan and it’s nice to see they’re still making great, punchy power-pop for all the right reasons. Joe Oestrich’s vocals are incredible. GUIDED BY VOICES – “The Bears For Lunch” Some very interesting songs on this one and Tobin really shines. I can honestly say I’ve never heard anything like “Finger Gang” and probably never will. A very noteworthy album for a band who has a career filled w/noteworthy albums.

Favorite new Ohio band
Bicentennial Bear(if they still count as new), Connections

Favorite Ohio show you saw this year
Wilco @ The LC (August)

What are you most excited about for 2013?
Should be full-length LP’s this year(finally) from two of the bands that I play guitar in: Winter Makes Sailors – “Moving On” and Swimsuit Edition – “Take A Dip”, The Cabdrivers, my songwriting/recording project should be doing more shows this year and maybe I’ll even write another song?? I accidentally put together a super-group to be my band and it’d be a shame if we didn’t at the very least play a bunch of shows. Nelsonville Music Festival – WILCO!!!  This could be the year that launches the festival into mega-festival status. Went last year and was very impressed and I hate music festivals.

What have you been working on lately?
I guess I sort of answered most of this in #4. Aside from those still playing w/The Kyle Sowashes on bass a lot and I’m guessing we’ll start writing the follow-up to “Somebody” soon. I’ve always been a fill-in for them but it looks like I’m gonna finally get to be on a record.

What are you listening to right now?
I’ve been in an Afghan Whigs phase. I’ve always liked them but just realized how incredible Black Love is and am obsessed w/”Summer’s Kiss”(track 10 or 11?). Ha, I just realized that they are from Ohio also. I suppose if some weird, music apocalypse happened that wiped out all music except Ohio music, my iPod would still be in pretty good shape.

AJ Hitmar
Athens  (Dark Circles Records)

What were your favorite Ohio releases from 2012?
Homemade Drugs from Cincinnati just released their self-titled in November and it sounds great. Also Hundos, the Hundley brothers in Columbus, have made 3 albums this year, each with multiple collaborators. Weird Science in Athens finally released their debut online, rad tunes with the cover art to match.

Best new Ohio band?
I kind of have tunnelvision for the house scene in Athens, so I feel pretty out of the loop. Small Steps and Frankie Teardrop have been putting in some hard work recently though.

Favorite Ohio show you saw this year?
Big Whoop in Columbus was a blast. 35ish bands in two days in the dead heat of July, it was like a punk rock rite of passage. I’m not sure what the organizers have planned for Summer 2013, but I know I’ll be there.

What are you most excited about for 2013?
Dark Circles has a few releases lined up already which is exciting. I’ll be getting as much done in Ohio as I can…I plan on moving to Chicago in July.

If you are a musician what have you been working on lately?
I’ve spent the last few months mixing and mastering an album for a band I was in, Dawgtooth, and it’s just about ready to go. Two other projects of mine, Valleyboys and Vodou, just released albums online. There’s also Cophugger, which had two songs pressed onto a 7″ split earlier this year.

What are you listening to right now?
I’ve been listening to the Trojan Box Sets nonstop, all year. Also Darker My Love, Jaill, The Bats, The War on Drugs, Camp Lo, Caetano Veloso, Pantha Du Prince, Donald Byrd, Can, and Eskmo have all frequently met my ears this year.


Dave Straub
Cleveland (Burger Boys, HOMeOwners, McShitz)

What were your favorite Ohio releases from 2012?
Off the top of my head the founding father’s LP. This is a good record but it is the only one I can think of that I had nothing to do with and I actually listened to.

Favorite new Ohio band
Murderedman but they may already be over with.

Favorite Ohio show you saw this year
Cassette Fest 2012 at Pats in the Flats. The highlight was Murderedman’s performance: involved lights , balloons, mirrors and hard rockin riffs. Homeowners played, Phyllis Dillenger, Wet Brain and some other crap. 10 -15 minute sets fun times.

What are you most excited about for 2013?
Lottery League

What have you been working on lately?
Upcoming Tuk Peenerson and his Wienerman split LP with Sloth. HOMeOwners debut release. PALACES new line up with Rosanna SAfos, Eben Nichols, Jesse Alison, Curtis Frey.

What are you listening to right now?
Goblin, Blouse, SoFt KIll, Litanic Mask, Zombi, THE Frustration and Pretty Things.

Jessica Makosky
Athens (The Revulvas, Whip & Tickle)

What were your favorite Ohio releases from 2012?
Aquabear Legion & Disjointed Records 16 in 16.

Favorite new Ohio band

Favorite Ohio show you saw this year
Porch Stage at the Nelsonville Music Festival

What are you most excited about for 2013?
Recording an album (finally and hopefully) with The Revulvas

What have you been working on lately?
Different styles of drumming (music styles that is)

What are you listening to right now?
Desent/The White Spider (It’s Disjointed Mike’s latest solo project about crazy dudes climbing mountains and dying)

Anyway Records Celebrates 20 Years at Ace of Cups

logoAnyway Records turns 20 this year and Bela Koe-Krompecher is throwing a big party over at Ace of Cups in Columbus to celebrate! Two nights of music (Friday and Saturday) featuring some of the best bands to come out of Ohio since the label’s beginning in 1992 including New Bomb Turks, Thomas Jefferson Slave Apartments, Moviola, Orchestraville, Necropolis (covering Gaunt), Obnox, Kyle Sowashes, Connections, County Pharaohs, Greenhorn, Jenny Mae, Winter Makes Sailors, St. Lenox, Belreve, and Chris Biester. Whew. That’s one hell of a lineup. And proceeds go to some real good causes: Peloton, Columbus Music Co-Op and NAMI Ohio. Read about the history of Anyway Records here.

FROM THE EVENT: “Starting in the pre-text world of vinyl records and shiny over-priced compact discs, Anyway Records was founded on the assumption that music is to be found in our own backyards and meant to be cheap and affordable, like the founders themselves. Jerry Wick and Bela Koe-Krompecher started Anyway Records under the guise as a project for Jerry’s excellent mid-western band Gaunt. Jerry left the label to concentrate on Gaunt and Bela continued to pour hours and beers into the label. We have worked with a variety of bands (mostly Ohio, mostly Columbus) including: Moviola, The Thomas Jefferson Slave Apartments, Jenny Mae, V-3, Gaunt, Guided by Voices, Ass Ponys and Mike Rep. in the Naughts we have had the pleasure to work with: Ghost Shirt, Kyle Sowash, The Lindsay, Connections, Obnox, Winter Makes Sailors, Terribly Empty Pockets, the Whiles, and a few more. Here’s to 20 years!” Cheers from Aquabear!

9:00 – St. Lenox
9:30 – Winter Makes Sailors
10:00 – Obnox
10:30 – New Bomb Turks
11:30 – Thomas Jefferson Slave Apartments
12:15 – NECROPOLIS – covering Gaunt

Chris Biester (from Appalachian Death Ride)

8:00 – Belreve
8:45 – Jenny Mae
9:15 – Kyle Sowashes
10:00 – Moviola
10:45 – County Pharaohs
11:30 – Connections
12:30 – Greenhorn

Aquabear Legion Volume 4 is (almost) OUT! Release Party at Union This Saturday!

Things are really exciting here at Aquabear HQ. Our brand new compilation Aquabear Legion Volume 4 is all finished up and ready to be heard by all, coming in at a whopping 38 songs from 38 Ohio bands all on 2 CD’s. We are celebrating the official release THIS SATURDAY, JUNE 11th at The Union in Athens, Ohio with music from Seascapes, Black Owls, Scubadog, and Weedghost. Comps will be for sale (at a special price!) and there will be some awesome music which will start around 10pm.

The compilation features hand screen printed art by Jed Collins and looks real sweet. They will be for sale at the show and then on our website and at good places around the state in the coming weeks.


ACRN’s Lobsterfest Takes Over Athens

This weekend, June 2nd through 4th, the All Campus Radio Network (ACRN) presents its annual Lobsterfest. This year’s fest features many local and regional bands to create a full and diverse lineup. This event is sponsored by ACRN and in part by the Student Activities Commission and local businesses.

Lobsterfest kicks off Thursday at 10 p.m. at Casa Cantina. Headliners include Columbus band Tin Armor and Athens act Scubadog, while The Kyle Sowashes and Stomp the Condor, both of Columbus, are opening.

Lobsterfest continues Friday at 10 p.m. at The Union. Headliners include Detroit art rockers Child Bite and Columbus post-punk band Narrow and the Brights. The night will begin with Cincinnati act Evolve, and Athens band Nurser.

Finally, on Saturday at noon, Lobsterfest takes over South Green’s lawn for an all-day extravaganza. New York City dream pop band Asobi Seksu and Detroit indie-rockers Prussia will be headlining. Athens favorites Brothertiger and She Bears will also be playing on Saturday. Expect to see many other acts from Athens and Columbus for a full line up check out the Lobsterfest Facebook event or

To finish the evening on Saturday, Dave Rave, Busted BASS and the DJ Crew will be presenting a Lobsterfest themed Dave Rave at 10 p.m. at The Union.