He calls himself a megaphone for the local arts. And now Justin Markert, co-owner of Cellar Door Records, is giving local bands another way to be heard. He's hosting Cellar Door Rendezvous, a two-day local music festival taking place at the Beachland Ballroom and Tavern March 8 and 9. The lineup will showcase the 14 bands featured on Cellar Door's upcoming fourth Cleveland music compilation. We asked Markert for his thoughts on five of the most notable acts taking the stage.
The Modern Electric
This indie-rock band possesses a cinematic quality that relies on piano as a primary instrument. The popular act sold out a headlining show at the Beachland Ballroom in December. "They have a truly transcendent [sound that] rises above the sound of the week or the sound of the year," Markert says.
A rock edge complements Herzog's calculated sound but never distracts from the vocals. "Instead of just sitting words into a melody, there's an intentional motive to the lyrics," Markert says.
With full musical arrangements buoyed by Shanna Delaney's powerful voice, this six-member Kent band played Cellar Door's intimate Loftworks Building space in August. "They blew my mind they were so good," Markert says.
This will be Humble Home's first show since its recent-but-amiable split from guitarist Matt Hectorne and drummer Anthony Foti. "It's been awesome to see them evolve from this quiet acoustic band into a real-live rock band," Markert says.
This act's complex musical arrangements initially piqued Markert's interest in them. "They're very talented and a really, really good rock band," he says.