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Universal Sigh w/ Voodoo Visionary live at The Hummingbird in Downtown Macon
March 24, 2018 @ 10:00 pm - 2:00 am| $5
Universal Sigh is a high energy, metamorphic rock show. Hailing from Athens, GA the foursome features a two-guitar attack and driving rhythm section, producing versatile music which reflects a deep fondness for artists such as Radiohead, Snarky Puppy, and Umphrey’s McGee. Influenced by a myriad of musical styles, the quartet has crafted a diverse catalog, which includes both lyrical tunes and instrumental arrangements. Each song is a voyage, with harmonious melodies soaring through epic peaks and dramatic descents into electrifying funk grooves. Fluid and dynamic, the Sigh is equipped with an abundance of compositions to energize any musical atmosphere.
Universal Sigh’s guitarist and drummer Pace and Jones Maynard, developed together as young musicians playing long hours in their parents’ basement. In high school, Jones met songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Steve Terry, and the two took playing together like fish to water. The expansive music scene in Athens paved the way for the band to meet Austin Parker, a soulful vocalist with a love for laying down the bass. Pace, Steve, Jones, and Austin have been at the forefront of all song writing and live performances. However, the band frequently collaborates original music with special guests, including full brass sections, percussion, and guest vocalists. Their openness allows every show to be a special surprise.
May 2016 ushered in the anticipated release of Universal Sigh’s first album, Atoms & Void. While improvisation is a staple component of the live show, Atoms & Void displays a thoughtfulness to innovatively diversify arrangements of rock songs, blues tunes, and futuristic jazz alike. The debut album explores the uncanny nature of song structure and provides lyrical content inspired by the turmoil and beauty of the human condition. The core four presents Atoms & Void, as a material extension to connect the listener to the inherent music within everyone.
Voodoo Visionary hails from the dirty south musical mecca of Atlanta. Their improvisational funk dance music delicately balances a tight, grooving rhythm section with diverse and dexterous keys and masterful guitar licks to create a sound the group calls psychofunk. Influenced by a wide array of artists such as Parliament Funkadelic, the Meters, the Grateful Dead, and Talking Heads, Voodoo Visionary has a uniquely blended sound that’s guaranteed to put the ‘oogie in yo boogie.
The band is made up of Dennis Dowd (keys), Jimmy Lynch (bass), Scott MacDonald (vocals), Mac Schmitz (drums), and Mike Wilson (guitar). Wilson, Schmitz and Lynch have been playing together for over 8 years, during which time they built a unique chemistry that allows for exceptional improvisation during live shows. MacDonald joined the group in July 2013 as the lead vocalist and Voodoo Visionary began writing new music and playing shows immediately. Dowd was added to the band in March 2014 providing a missing link that enhanced the band’s distinctive sound, and the group has since taken off in the Atlanta music scene. Jose Rivera (percussion), Martin Anderson (saxophone), and Ben Otieno (trumpet) are regular additions to the live show and are featured on Voodoo Visionary’s sophomore album.
Voodoo Visionary released their debut album, Spirit of the Groove in March 2015. Over the past two years, while playing across the southeast, the band has shared the stage with acts such as Karl Denson’s Tiny Universe with Jimmy Herring, TAUK, Col. Bruce Hampton, Zach Deputy, Earphunk, Roosevelt Collier, Jerry Joseph, The Main Squeeze, and Futurebirds. The band has been performing at venues like Variety Payhouse, Terminal West, the Georgia Theatre, Barrelhouse South, Ringside Cafe, and Crowbar, as well as major festivals such as Counterpoint Music and Arts Festival and Sweetwater 420 Fest. The band has made live radio appearances on WUGA’s It’s Friday program, WMNF’s In the Groove, and WPRK’s Green Eggs and Jams. In 2016, they have excelled further into the regional and national music scene with festival performances at Sweetwater 420 Fest, Purple Hatters Ball, Great Outdoors Jam, Imagine Festival, Hookahville, and Backwoods Music Festival. They are scheduled to release their second studio album, “Off The Ground,” in February 2017.
Voodoo Visionary’s first album, Spirit of the Groove, draws from the various musical influences found among the band members. Elements of funk, jazz, disco and rock n’ roll combine to create an inimitable sound. Tracks such as “All Week,” “Salt” and “Parasite” have compositional elements reminiscent of Frank Zappa and Return to Forever, while “Take the Wheel” evokes a style similar to Phish. The driving grooves of “The Heathen,” “Testify” and “Dancin’ Feet” make it nearly impossible to sit still while listening, and the “Kang Gang Anthem” hints at elements of Pink Floyd while paying homage to the festival scene the band holds so close to their hearts. Spirit of the Groove was recorded live in the studio to capture the raw energy and showcase the improvisational expertise that the band brings to their live show.