In 1992 Scott McCaughey and Steve Wynn were nothing but two buddies bonded over a love of baseball. Fast forward almost twenty years with the addition of drummer Linda Pitmon and R.E.M's Peter Buck and this supergroup is now known for their original songs about America's favorite pastime in an alternative rock and roots fashion.
Brothers Chris and Curt Kirkwood formed Meat Puppets nearly 30 years ago. They were "grunge" before it was a genre and "alternative" before it was a format. They were a major influence on Kurt Cobain and Nirvana's music. They've been through the ringer with record labels, touring and drugs, yet somehow they're still around to release Lolipop, their 13th studio album.
Though Chris Perricelli originally hails from Massachusetts, it wasn't until he moved to Chicago that he formed his current band Little Man. After the band moved to the Twin Cities next and built a reputation by constantly touring and gigging around town, City Pages named them the Best Rock Band of 2007.
Formed in Austin, Texas in 2007 the retro-blues soul band Black Joe Lewis and the Honeybears began after lead-singer Joe Lewis picked up a guitar at a pawn shop. Heavily influenced by James Brown and Howlin' Wolf, Lewis played around town before getting the attention of locals Spoon and Okkervil River.
English electronic, post-dubstep producer and singer/songwriter James Blake has only been making music for a short time - less than two years, but he's already making waves in electronic music. With a goal of trying to create new sounds, he accomplishes that his background in piano and harmonics.
A former member of dearly departed local band The Glad Version, Adam Svec has been warmly received since he debuted as a solo artist in 2008. Svec is a prolific songwriter, having come out with three albums in as many years.
Like many acts these days, the Brian Just Band got their start by accident. Brian and his bandmate Josie invited their friend Rick to play trumpet on their couples' duet, but when he sang the horn part instead, the resulting harmonies inspired them to start a band together.
Brute Heart is probably the only Minneapolis band with not one, but two members named Crystal. The three female vocalists lead the pack of Twin Cities avant-garde musicians with haunting (at times, howling) vocals and moody instrumental landscapes.
When deciding what to name their band the term for the residual heat left on a chair after an individual has vacated it seemed the perfect fit, Manheat. Duluth natives, Manheat display their hard rock sensibilities by playing loud and fast.
New York City indie quartet The Pains of Being Pure at Heart split the difference between two of '90s indie's most distinctive sounds -- twee-pop and shoegaze. The result is music that is often swathed in reverb and echo but that maintains the honesty, intimacy and innocence of the best indie-pop, all played with an infectious, propulsive energy.