Review: Inaugural Unraveled Music Fest strings together live music concurrent with DTLA Art Walk



L.A.-based apparel brand Unraveled injected a little rock ’n’ roll into the monthly Downtown Los Angeles Art Walk last week, staging the first Unraveled Music Festival. Orchestrated across four venues within blocks of one another, the festival partnered with businesses such as a clothing store, gallery and salon to host live music from an eclectic mix of 16 artists.

Time and Energy kicked things off at 7:15 p.m. in the Curt Darling Salon on Main Street, adorned with raw wood shelves, exposed plant life, terrariums and a random Emmy on the wall. A woman live-painted an abstract face near the door as the two-piece band of Jorge Rios and Brennan Roach banged away in the back on bass and drums, respectively, over some pre-recorded loops and samples, as patrons stood throughout to watch, the salon still in full swing as ladies got their hair done and make-up on.

The technology installation studio and gallery Machine Inspired Art on Main hosted acts upstairs on its main floor as well as downstairs. Indian Summer delivered a rousing blues-rock set full of soaring harmonies and righteous guitar riffs. The five-piece were reminiscent of the Black Keys as they played songs from their “Four Days In Arkham” EP, but with a fuller sound and the feminine touch of Summer Mencher, whose guitar and voice meshed wonderfully with Jon Lall’s lead vocals. Got Damage followed, tearing through tracks from their album “Digital Smoke Signals,” including “Call of the Wild” and “Sweatshop.” Their live set-up featured bass, drums and guitar, as well as a masked man triggering samples, giving the songs a harder and more energetic feel, and giving MCs Geronimo $ and Spitting Bull a more commanding presence.

Over at the men’s contemporary clothing and design studio Beautiful Fül on 5th Street, Brooklyn trio Sharkmuffin slayed festival-goers from a loft, whipping up a storm of bangs and distortion and raining down their sludgy garage and punk rock. Natalie Kirch’s scuzzy bass barked and blared through the raw drumming, anchoring singer Tarra Thiessen’s catchy guitar licks and raw vocals.

The night capped off at Pattern Bar on 9th, with a performance by the duo of Vanessa Wheeler and Sarah Bearse as Leo*Leo to finish out the night. Their smooth cover of Drake’s “Hold On, We’re Going Home” had the younger female contingent grooving and the crowd bobbing their heads, as well as their single “Dancing Queen” from a new EP out next month, and they closed with a cover of Rihanna’s “Stay.” All in all, the inaugural Unraveled Music Festival proved to be the perfect supplement to the eclecticism of DTLA Art Walk.

Photos by Oscar Montes and Bella Clark