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Another Moment of Truth 

The Spudmonsters reconvene for a European Festival

In the '90s, local hardcore heroes the Spudmonsters built a strong following that started in the Midwest and spread through Europe. Then the whole thing went to hell.

"We had just gotten off a European headlining tour, and promoters overseas were stealing money from us when we were finally making some money," says singer Don Foose, who now fronts the hardcore band Foose. "Once you start getting paid well, people come out of the woodwork saying they're your friends and that they can do this or that for you. I was sick of it, so I put everything on the backburner and formed Run Devil Run. The same thing started happening with that band. It turned into a business and wasn't as much fun."

When a promoter recently asked Foose to reunite the Spudmonsters for Belgium's Dour Festival — where audiences top off at 140,000 fans — the offer was too good to pass up. But before the band heads to Europe for the July 17 show, it will play Peabody's (2083 E. 21st St., 216-776-9999, peabodys.com) at 7 p.m. Saturday, July 10.

"Everyone was down with it," says Foose. "Our guitarist lives in New York, and the other guy lives in Pittsburgh, but we're making time for it."

The band plans to debut a new track, "Lessons Learned (The Hard Way)," and shoot a video for the song during this weekend's concert. "I really like the song — it's very much like Moment of Truth, the last album we did," says Foose. "We would love for things to pick back up for the Spudmonsters, but I don't know if it's possible we could stick together. There's so much going on in everybody's lives. We just live day-by-day and enjoy the time that we do spend together."

Trumpet player Josh Rzepka just finished recording his first classical CD, on which he performs baroque concertos backed by a 13-piece chamber orchestra. He recruited the local production team Five/Four Productions for the recording, which took place at Oberlin's Warner Hall and St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Cleveland Heights. "I have been working on this project for over a year and am thrilled it will be released next month," says Rzepka. He doesn't have any classical gigs booked yet, but he'll play a jazz show at 8 p.m. Thursday, July 8, at Nighttown (12387 Cedar Rd., 216-795-0550, nighttowncleveland.com). Tickets are $10.

Singer-songwriter Zach has just returned from his I Love Mountains Tour 2010, which he says was "über-successful and massively fun." He played in San Diego and Georgia, and returned "cleansed and inspired." His next local gig is at 7 p.m. Thursday, July 8, at Fat Fish Blue (21 Prospect Ave E., 216-875-6000, fatfishblue.com) with blues mainstay Kristine Jackson. Admission is free.

Send feedback to music@clevescene.com.

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