Joe Policastro Trio Headed to Athens Uncorked May 1

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On Wednesday, May 1, Chicago’s The Joe Policastro Trio will perform at Athens Uncorked (14 Station Street). The appearance comes just months after the February release of their fourth full-length, “Nothing Here Belongs.” The group released a series of albums consisting of various covers (“West Side Story Suite” in 2013, “POPS!” in 2016, and “Screen Sounds” in 2017,) and their latest release is the first to feature original works by the band, as well as three thoughtfully placed arrangements of songs by other composers.

Nothing Here Belongs opens with an arrangement of Bruce Springsteen’s “I’m On Fire,” The Boss’ fourth (and, debatably, most eerie,) single from his superhit 1984 album Born In the U.S.A. The middle of the album is marked by a rendition of Santo & Johnny’s “The Wandering Sea,” an eclectic tune from the steel-guitar duo perhaps known best for the iconic golden age of rock ‘n’ roll instrumental “Sleep Walk.” The album ends with a cover of The Talking Head’s poignant 1983 tune “This Must Be the Place.”

“The band has always had a large body of original music — all the members write, but it was one of those things where we had never recorded that side of the band,” said Joe Policastro in an interview that you can hear the entirety of in the embed above. “Somebody had asked me ‘oh, what’s the next theme you’re going to do for an album?’ and I really didn’t want it to come across as though we do a sort of contrived thing with the themes of our albums. (…) At first I thought that we would do an album of all original music, but that seemed sort of thematic too, so we decided we wanted the album (to feel) more like a live set would, with a mix of original music and covers.”

The Joe Policastro Trio will perform at Athens Uncorked 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Wednesday, May 1. The cover is $10 for general admission, $7 for students.