A 9-piece outfit formed fifteen years ago by members of Grammy Award-winning Latin revival orchestra Grupo Fantasma, Brownout has evolved into a musical force all its own. After garnering three Austin Music Awards, the band has continued to produce music that is unflinchingly progressive, while evoking the classic influences of artists such as WAR, Cymande and Funkadelic. They’ve performed at events including Bonnaroo, High Sierra Music Festival, Pickathon, FFFFest, Bear Creek Music Festival, Utopia Festival and Pachanga Fest, while regularly touring the U.S. Brownout’s also served as a highly in demand backing band for artists including Prince, Daniel Johnston, GZA and Bernie Worrell.
After a surprise national hit in 2014 with their Black Sabbath inspired 'Brownout Present Brown Sabbath' album, the band released Brownout Presents Brown Sabbath Vol. II in 2016 via Ubiquity Records. The recording includes reimagined versions of “Fairies Wear Boots,” “Snowblind” and “Supernaught.” The tracks “Sabbath Bloody Sabbath” and “Symptom of the Universe” features vocals by Ghostland Observatory’s Aaron Behrens. Prior to the Brown Sabbath series, Brownout released three albums - Homenaje (Freestyle Records 2008), Aguilas & Cobras (Six Degrees 2009) and Oozy (Nat Geo 2012). In 2017, the band released an original EP entitled Over the Covers (Fat Beats 2017), which was widely acclaimed by critics and heralded the next chapter for the band as it continues to evolve and explore new and funky musical realms.
In 2018 the band teamed up yet again with legendary hiphop label Fat Beats to release an album of psychedelic funk interpretations of Public Enemy classics called Fear of A Brown Planet. NPR said of the project "The guys in Brownout have done it again. They have gone to the deep well of uncut funk to produce yet another homage to classic soul that further burnishes their reputation as keepers of the funk flame...Brownout's dedication to Old School is not necessarily about preserving a musical relic but instead it's more about creating a living, breathing brand of funk that can cross generations."
Ever-prolific funk masters, the band is currently working on a new album of original works with producer Steve Berlin (Los Lobos) slated for release in fall 2019.
Brassy Washington DC-based outfit, Black Masala, is part of the new generation of go-anywhere brass bands. You can hear this sound all over the world now – from New Orleans (Hot 8) to Belgrade (Boban & Marko Markovic), Paris (Fanfarai) to Cotonou (Gangbe Brass Band), and right here on the east coast area as well (Red Baraat & No BS! Brass). A major party alert for this band – Black Masala puts on an amazing, high-energy live show!
Black Masala’s Brassy Midnight Party Grooves from NoLa to Punjab on Trains and Moonlight Destinies
You want to have a good time? You need brass.
This is what DC’s Black Masala blasts to the world, harnessing all the good times sunk in the Romany, second-line, bhangra, and funk horn parts that have gotten huge swaths of the planet up and dancing. With rock drive and a willingness to be as weird and wonderful as the party demands, Black Masala woos fans and new listeners with Trains and Moonlight Destinies, a tribute to the ins and outs of love, fate, and wanderlust.
Black Masala’s originals hit both elements head on, telling stories of powerful women, rascally dudes, raucous nights, and life on the road that are tinged with a hint of the fantastical, as the video for the title track reveals.
2018 will see the release of their latest album entitled "Trains and Moonlight Destinies"
Whether they are performing live shows or releasing new music, Black Masala push the boundaries between genres and explore new musical frontiers. This unorthodox and highly creative approach is what makes the shows so much fun with a wild and unpredictable vibe for the audience.