So many release parties this week! Here's a quick rundown of four big ones. Check the Sensory Overload blog for a more detailed take.

So many release parties this week! Here's a quick rundown of four big ones. Check the Sensory Overload blog for a more detailed take.


Andy Shaw Band

"Ways of the World" release show

When: 9:30 p.m. Friday, April 17

Where: Thirsty Ear Tavern, Grandview

Web: andyshawband.com

Here we have the sound of Andy Shaw Band coming into its own. Ways of the World exhibits a fully formed unit that transcends the frat-rock limitations of white-boy reggae in favor of something richer and fuller. Their pals the Floorwalkers, with whom they share lead guitarist Theo Perry, have obviously been a positive influence.

The group has two more release parties planned after Friday's event at the Thirsty Ear. April 27 they'll celebrate at their Monday Ruby Tuesday residency; an all-ages event at Wild Goose Creative is set for April 30.


Eric Nassau

"What's Left of Empty Space" release show

When: 10 p.m. Friday, April 17

Where: The Treehouse, Grandview

Web: ericnassau.naladahc.com

Eric Nassau's list of collaborators is almost as long as his beard. On What's Left of Empty Space, the singer-songwriter's rustic folk-rock is fleshed out by a sprawling cast of local all-stars including Stan Smith, Megan Palmer and Jim Volk.

In spite of Nassau's flaws, there's no denying his songwriter's touch and folksy charm. I'd be happy to happen upon one of his sets at some far-flung watering hole. America will have just such a chance during the two-month tour he'll embark on after Friday's show at The Treehouse.


Your Favorite Assassin

"Like a Saint, Like a Fiend" release show

When: 10 p.m. Saturday, April 18

Where: The Treehouse, Grandview

Web: yourfavoriteassassin.com

My previous encounters with Your Favorite Assassin left me thinking they were a one-dimensional bluster of heavy riffs and even weightier melodrama from their singer, a riot-grrrl holdover known simply as "The D.B.K." But YFA's latest offering reveals more complex shading, indicating that either this band is growing or I was giving them the short shrift. (Probably both.) They're still not my cup of tea, but I appreciate the way they've spread their wings with this collection.


MojoFlo

"Waiting" release show

When: 9 p.m. Saturday, April 18

Where: Rumba Cafe, Campus

Web: myspace.com/mojoflomusic

Columbus cats won't find an album opener with more sass than "Waiting," the title track of MojoFlo's new EP. As staccato blasts give way to pelvic grooves, the band conjures joy and pain at once. You can marvel at the complex emotional palette they're painting with, or you can drop the intellectual dissection and dance.

The rest of Waiting is nearly as strong. Each band member gets a chance to show off his or her chops, from George Barrie's sharp guitar work on "Sho Would" to Amber Knicole's vocal gymnastics on "I'm Gone." Piano ballad "Crying" is a noble experiment, but this band is built for better things.

For more local music news and reviews, click to the Sensory Overload blog at ColumbusAlive.com