On Sun. May 19 at 5:50 pm, Painted Caves will shake up MLK Blvd for our annual celebration! The Milwaukee-based Caves are no strangers to fans in the Madison area, having wowed Orton Park Festival in 2016 with their one-of-a-kind Arab American world beat music. Due to a chance encounter with Amarass Records founder (and WORT DJ) Ankur Malhotra after a gig in 2014, the band released their first album on his New Delhi-based label, and made their international debut at Amarrass Music Festival in India later that fall.
Painted Caves is the brainchild of guitarist/vocalist/songwriter Ali Lubbad who, between a full-time job and three kids, finds time to make genre bending music. Lubbad and multi-instrumentalist Mike Kashou are the core of the band, but the lineup expands and contracts according to the occasion and includes Holly Wake (vocals, flute), Matt Wilson (bass), Marc Wilson (tabla and other percussion), Andy Lopas (drums), Ali Amr (qanun) and Devin Drobka (drums).
When Painted Caves released its self-titled CD in 2012, it received extensive airplay on WMSE, Radio Milwaukee as well as on the BBC, PRI and WBEZ, Chicago. Dreamy yet with a rock sensibility, the songs are elegantly composed psychedelia rooted in Lubbad and Kashou’s Near Eastern heritage, blending rock instruments with traditional sounds to create something that straddles the West and East equally. Dancing in many various styles is encouraged and inspired as a result.
WORT is very excited to have Painted Caves headline our 22nd Annual Block Party on Sunday May 19! They’ll be taking the stage after the raffle at 5:50 pm, and will play till around 7:00 pm when the party closes.