May 23 2012 02:41 PM

Our roundup of music news includes projects from former Pokéz owner Rafael Reyes and soul-funk singer Stevie Harris

Baptism of Thieves
Photo by Christina Nunez

Keep an eye out for Baptism of Thieves, a new band featuring Rafael Reyes, visual artist and former owner of Pokéz, the Downtown Mexican restaurant. But take note: This isn't your average band.

"We are not musicians," Reyes explains in an email. "We are magicians."

Consisting of Reyes on keyboards, Lord Mykil Zep on drums and Ian Heresy Døsland on guitar, the band debuted at Voz Alta earlier this month and has since developed into a full-on project. Calling their drone-heavy rock "Occult-wave," they perform in homemade costumes, experiment with alternate tuning frequencies and take inspiration from a newage American religious movement called Eckankar.

"Our music gives you power while others use theirs to steal your soul," says Reyes, who's lately been studying at San Diego's Motivational Institute of Hypnotherapy.

If you're not quite sure what to make of all this, check the band out for yourself at Soda Bar on Wednesday, May 30.

Soul singer Stevie Harris (The Styletones, Stevie & The Hi- Stax) is also playing in an artsy new project. Performing under the name Slasher Mary, Harris and DJ / producer VELA2 make sultry electro-soul with an abstract twist. Making a statement about the power of painting and the "ridiculousness of our animal existence," Harris says the name is a reference to Mary Richardson, a militant suffragette who made headlines in 1914 when she attacked an erotic painting of the goddess Venus by Diego Velázquez with a meat cleaver. Listen to their music at

Electro band Illuminauts will celebrate the release of a new EP at Kava Lounge on Sunday, May 27. Onra, eLan, Elusive, Eddie Turbo and Mateo will also perform.

Email or follow him on Twitter at @peterholslin.


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