The Top Five Bands to Check Out at this Year’s Artscape: Curated by Jordannah Elizabeth

It’s that time of year again! The 35th annual Artscape music and arts festival is occurring this weekend in downtown Baltimore and on the Morgan State University’s campus. Local artists, actors and musicians fill Artscape’s stages and the streets of the city to showcase their unique talents and undeniably creative music expressions.

Here are five local bands to see at Artscape 2017. Artists like Martina Lynch and Natural Velvet are intriguing emerging artists to watch, while Scroll Downers, PLRLS and The Fruition Experience band members have contributed a number of music and art projects during their time as local artists here in Baltimore City.

No matter what their experience and output in the city, we’re so excited to see these band playing Baltimore’s historic festival, Artscape 2017.

The Fruition Experience (Neo Soul)

The uber talented neo-soul, jazz group The Fruition Experience will be performing at 4:30 pm on Friday, July 21st on the Morgan State University Sound Off Live! Stage. Their soothing, yet danceable soul music is well composed, sensual and at times experimental. The music has a intergalactic style to it that make The Fruition Experience not your average, local neo-soul group. You’ll definitely want to catch their live set and support this group who has hosted their own concert series and highlighted other talented bands during their important existence.

Website | Music

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Scroll Downers (Psych Rock)

Baltimore’s underground rock supergroup Scroll Downers, featuring members of Dope Body and Lexie Mountain Boys, will be taking the stage again this year after performing an epic performance of David Bowie hits on Artscape’s Main Stage. This year, you’ll be able to hear the band’s original music on Friday, July 21st at 8 pm on Johns Hopkins University Station North Stage. Scroll Downer’s sludgy, pulsating rock music ebbs, flows and at time generally erupts creating melodrama that is perfect to experience for a setting sun on a hot summer’s night. The band’s song “Hot Winter” from their 2016 album of the same title (our on Ehse Records) is an epic track that will draw you in planting your feet on  Station North’s pavement.

Website | Music

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Martina Lynch (Hip Hop)

Young hip hop artist Martina Lynch will be performing on the Johns Hopkins University Station North Stage at 2 pm on Saturday, July 22nd. With her unapologetic girl-power-trap music, Lynch will have you dancing just as you would at 11 pm on the dance floor. Her single, “Bad Girls” is just a taste of what this 20 year old budding musician has to offer Baltimore’s Artscape attendees. Make sure you stay hydrated as you’re bound to sweat to the high energy beats of her homegrown music.

Website | Music

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Natural Velvet (Post -Punk Rock)

While riding on the high of the release of their latest album, Mirror to Make You, which was released earlier this summer on Friends Records, the feminist post punk band, Natural Velvet gladly returns from their tours and to play local events like Artscape. The band’s brand of heavy, dense post punk songs, latent with lyrics of women and glamourous queers acting badly and never caring, Natural Velvet is a must see on Sunday, July 23rd at 4:30 pm. Their sexy, powerful single, “It’s All Mine” will be an anthem of yours before you step away from their late afternoon stage performance.

photo above + lead photo by: Micah E. Wood

Website | Music

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PLRLS (New Wave Rock)

PLRLS is a faced paced new wave rock band whose music is wild and incredibly fun. If you want to have an enjoyable time to dance and let your hair down, you should certainly check out their set at the Johns Hopkins University Station North Stage at 7:15 pm where they’ll close the night and the stage’s festivities on the last day of Artscape, Sunday, July 23rd. This upbeat rock band is a great choice to close out the fest because you’ll get a sincere opportunity to bounce and move a band who has no shame in making their audience get a little crazy.

Website | Music

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Honorable Mentions:

Soul Cannon (Hip Hop) playing at Windup Space Friday, July 21st w/ VLMA, BLACK LUNG, Garbage Masher

Wing Dam (Indie Rock) Playing on Johns Hopkins University Station North Stage on July 22nd at 8 pm

Wordsmith (Hip Hop) Playing Morgan State University Sound Off Live! Stage at 2 pm on Saturday, July 22nd

LOCATION INFO:

*  Morgan State University Sound Off Live! Stage location: Mount Royal Avenue, near Lafayette Avenue

*  Johns Hopkins University Station North Stage location: Charles Street, near North Avenue

*  Artscape Main Stage location: 1400 Cathedral Street, near Mount Royal Avenue

*  The Windup Space location: 12 W North Avenue