Jazz guitarist Ethan Winograd and his ensemble present four originals and three interpretations — from wide-ranging sources. The easygoing originals, written by Winograd and drummer Jay Matula, are pleasant to listen to, mixing cool jazz with bossa nova-inspired stuff. Winograd shares the spotlight nicely with trumpter Kyle Simpson, saxophonist "Spider" Wenzel and organist Tim Tucker; and bass player Justin Brown holds it down well. The sweetest spot on this one may be a version of Radiohead's "Nude"; the oddest choice may be the jazzed-up interpretation of Neil Young's "After the Gold Rush," which doesn't necessarily lend itself well.
CHARLES WALLACE CD RELEASE. 8 p.m. Sat., Nov. 16. Bicycle Heaven, 1800 Preble Ave., North Side. $5. All ages. www.charleswallacemusic.com
Pop singer-songwriter Rankin is a Pittsburgh ex-pat now living in Nashville; his wheelhouse is mainstream pop-rock with lush production. This four-song EP features a few upbeat highway-driving jams along with a tender ballad. "Two Glasses" brings to mind Bon Jovi here and there; "Back 2 Nineteen," an easygoing pop jam, is the disc's highlight. Rankin's vocals are strong and emotive — which calls into question the use of Autotune and other vocal manipulations, especially on "Lexi J." Let that voice shine!
(My Idea of Fun)
EP from the local indie-rockers. It's hard not to like this band's lo-fi, '90s-ish tunes — they range from grunge ("Teenage Soul") to sounding a lot like Ben Folds Five ("Atlanta"). Guitars are at the center of this EP, but not at the expense of well-put-together vocals. The Lampshades portray small-town ennui with gusto, not an easy task.