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Radio Moscow hopes to woo American audience in Columbus gig

Courtesy of Kyle Aaron Lacy

Hoping to overcome one of its biggest obstacles, Radio Moscow members are eager to attract a crowd with their ‘60s-influenced psychedelic blues music.

The band is scheduled to play at Ace of Cups bar at 8 p.m. Tuesday.

Parker Griggs, frontman for Radio Moscow, said the largest challenge the band has had to face is playing the music it loves for this generation.

“There’s not that big of a fan base for our style (of music),” Griggs said.  

Radio Moscow’s psychedelic sound is inspired by many influences such as British blues and acid rock, Griggs said.

The band doesn’t follow music trends, Griggs said.

The band, which started out as Griggs’ solo project, has added two members, with drums played by Cory Berry and collaborative songwriting by bassist Zach Anderson.

Griggs said they are now able to put forth a better show for their audience.

“It’s been a lot better to have the real thing (drums) — it’s louder, and it’s better to see,” he said.

Even though the biggest challenge for the band has been gathering a fan base, it has also been one of its greatest achievements.

The members have been able to attract their idols, such as Johnny Ramone of The Ramones, and other musicians from the ‘60s and ‘70s to their music.

“Its cool to know that other psychedelic rockers are digging what we’re doing,” Griggs said.

It’s not only psychedelic rockers of the past who have seen potential in Radio Moscow, but contemporary artists also. Dan Auerbach, of The Black Keys, discovered the band and facilitated a record deal for them from Alive Naturalsound Records.

Since then, Radio Moscow has been compared to The Black Keys, who are also set to perform in Columbus, with a tour stop scheduled for March 4 at the Schottenstein Center.

“Griggs’ vocals are soulful and tastefully gritty, similar to contemporary blues outfit Black Keys,” wrote Dan Rankin, for “Blare Magazine.”

Nathaniel Barbone, a second-year in art, said Jimi Hendrix sound is one thing that attracts him to Radio Moscow’s music. He said he has listened to the band for two years, and is excited to see it live.  

“He (Griggs) sounds like Jimi Hendrix, I think. I like that fuzz tone on a guitar, it’s like old school rock ‘n’ roll vintage, but now-a-days,” Barbone said.

Most of Radio Moscow’s inspiration comes from boredom and seclusion. The band members live in the middle of nowhere, and “the songs are inspired by loneliness,” Griggs said.

The show in Columbus will be part of the band’s North American tour promoting its newest album, “The Great Escape of Leslie Magnafuzz.”

Griggs said the set list has yet to be established, but he is expecting a mix from all three of the band’s albums, with some of its newest songs such as, “Little Eyes” along with some of their older works.

Even though Radio Moscow has never played at Ace of Cups, Jeff Kleinman, booking manager for the venue, said he is expecting a pretty large crowd.

After its Ace of Cups debut, Radio Moscow will be joining Swedish band Graveyard .

Griggs said he is looking forward to being paired with a “like-minded band.”

Presale tickets have already sold out for the show. Local musicians, Eye and TK Webb (of Sundown), will be opening acts. Tickets are $10 at the door.

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