NEARFest is upon us once again. This year, the 10th annual convening of this musical rite, promises to be an amazing time, but then, when has it not been. Hell, I even enjoyed Trenton. The people at NEARFest are always friendly, the music is always great, it is incredibly organized, for the last time by Chad Hutchinson and Rob LaDuca. The torch will be passed, and
the future looks as bright as anything which has come before.
The lineup, as usual,consists of a couple of bands I’m familiar with…
- echolyn (United States)
- Synergy® (United States)
…combined with a whole bunch I’ll see for the first time.
- Banco del Mutuo Soccorso (Italy)
- Liquid Tension Experiment (United States)
- Fish (Scotland)
- Peter Hammill (England)
- Discipline (United States)
- Radio Massacre International (England)
- Mörglbl (France)
- Koenji Hyakkei (Japan)
NEARFest is always a learning experience for me. I listened to Synergy as a lad while exploring the inner folds of my cerebral cortex. Many fond memories are attached to that music and that time. echolyn I’ve seen perform at NEWEars events, here in Lowell, MA. The others will all be new to me and I am wriggling like a puppy at the prospect of new, live, progressive rock.
NEARFest also provides me an opportunity to browse the vendors looking for CD’s. Yes, I know I could purchase them online, but I really like searching through the bins. Serendipity and Kismet have always been my allies. So, what will I be buying? So far, on my list:
- Kaos Moon
- Magellan (perhaps)
There are others, but my list is stuck on my cubicle wall. I must remember not to leave it there.
Last year, as a sign of the genuinely convivial relationship between the Bethlehem BrewWorks and NEARFest, their brewmasters created a tasty concoction called Thundering Hammond Pale Ale with a breathtaking logo designed by Tom Whalen. They sold out, well before the weekend was over. Well, this year they’ve done it again. The alchemists in the brew house have come up with the NEARFest 10X10 IPA, with another fantastic logo by Mr. Whalen, seen over on the right.