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A Gaelic Storm is brewing; Edgefest lineup set; Sevendust to Rapids

Gaelic Storm formed in Santa Monica, Calif., but you’d be forgiven for assuming the group got together as kids in Dublin, Ireland. Marrying deep strains of traditional Irish and Scottish music to an American pop and rock sensibility, the group has become a conduit for Irish Americans to the land that authors Jill and Leon Uris once famously referred to as “a terrible beauty.”

There is something bittersweet and elegiac abut traditional Irish music, even when it’s of the raucous and feel-good variety. It’s in the very nature of the melodies themselves – something wistful, weather-beaten but resilient. And it’s a music that can, somewhat paradoxically, make you long for “home,” even if it’s a homeland you’ve never been to.

Gaelic Storm nails all of the ephemeral aspects of traditional Irish music and then brings the more Americanized sense of “concert as performance” to the table. As a result, the band has earned a reputation as one of the more fiery Celtic-based ensembles going.

For its show at the Tralf Music Hall (622 Main St.) on Sunday, Gaelic Storm will forge a connection with the Buffalo portion of the extended Irish family by inviting the Greater Buffalo Firefighters Pipe & Drum ensemble to both open the show and then join the headliner later in the evening. Slainte!

Tickets are priced $25 advance and $30 day of show, and can be found through

Edgefest lineup announced

At long last, the lineup for Edgefest 2014 – which will take place at 4 p.m. Aug. 10 at the outer harbor concert site (9325 Fuhrmann Blvd.) on Aug. 10 – has been announced.

Alternative/power-pop legends Weezer will headline the festival, which also will include performances from Brand New, the Sheila Divine, Pentimento and several other acts to be announced.

Tickets for the all-ages Edgefest will go on sale Friday at noon, through and at the Town Ballroom box office, located at 681 Main St. A limited number of “early bird” tickets will be available between Friday and Sunday, for $25 plus a $2 service fee. After Sunday, prices move to $40 advance, and finally, $48 on the day of the show. There also will be a limited number of $80 VIP tickets made available beginning Friday. All non-VIP tickets are general admission.

Metallic, but gently so

Sevendust has earned a reputation as one of the more inventive bands in the world of contemporary heavy metal. Intensely aggressive at one turn, abundantly melodic at the next, the group has cultivated a loyal following over the course of its 20 years together.

It should also be noted that Sevendust presented a multiracial face to the world of metal at a time when the genre seemed to be almost exclusively a white male’s club; African-American singer and uber-frontman Lajon Witherspoon is widely regarded as one of the more commanding presences in the metal form, and has led the band through myriad sub-genres, among them prog-metal, hardcore, hard rock and alternative metal.

Heaviness is certainly the cornerstone of the Sevendust sound, but for the band’s current tour – in support of the “Time Travelers & Bonfires” album – Sevendust will be performing in an acoustic format.

The tour stops at the Rapids Theatre (1711 Main St., Niagara Falls) on Friday for a 7 p.m. show. Tickets are priced $25 general admission, and can be found now through


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