Posts Tagged ‘Alternative’
By: Caitlin Hoffman
Monks of Mellonwah are back, and they’ve dived deeper than ever.
Don’t get me wrong: Neurogenesis was a wonderful second EP, a delightful sampling of what was to come. With their full-length album still underway, these creative geniuses couldn’t help but bequeath us with another experimental sunspot, this time in the form of a three-piece single (or three track EP, if you prefer). This latest composition is raging with emotion and weighty with haunting, melodic symphony.
Sky and The Dark Night offers layer upon layer of transcendent psychology. I so love it when music compels the listener to explore themselves. It’s amazing that human creation can be that powerful.
This awe-inspiring escapade boasts a depth and darkness their last EP had only begun to produce. From the first forty seconds onward, you’re frozen by the resounding, gothic tone. Each note births goosebumps on exposed skin, alive with angst, numbing with extremity. All three parts easily flow into each other, making you unsure where one ends and the other begins. This leaves you wondering, rendered helpless to a tidal wave of the brain.
Joe de la Hoyde (the guitarist/backing vocalist) speaks of what inspired this release:
“We are each riddled by our own curses and battle our own demons. Sky And The Dark Night, to me, is the journey from the beginning of our battles to their fruitless ends; the ups and downs, the triumphs and failures. It is the undying hope that somewhere along the way, we might find ourselves.”
By: Maria Ciezak
MARIA CIEZAK: For those who may not be familiar with The Neighbourhood, can you provide us with a brief backstory?
THE NEIGHBOURHOOD: Growing up in Thousand Oaks (ish), it was easy for kids who played music/in bands to meet. We all met a couple years ago & decided to try & make music with our best friends. Luckily, we all trust each other as musicians & everyone is bringing something unique to the table. It’s a good feeling. We made some songs, put them out, made some videos, put them out, toured around a bunch & here we are.
MC: Is there any specific meaning to the change in spelling of the band name?
NBHD: Initially it was only because the other spelling was taken. That being said, I think it is one of the best things to happen to our band, we feel it fits us so much better.
MC: Did you always know you wanted to make music?
NBHD: It’s always been undeniable. It was easy to get discouraged about it, though. It took meeting the guys in this band for me to not give up.
MC: Sweater Weather in my opinion is one of the best songs I have heard in quite some time. How does it feel to be riding the wave of such massive success on this track?
NBHD: We are very humbled by the love. It’s a great feeling when people like your songs. Hearing ourselves on the radio is pretty insane.
MC: So let’s talk about the album I Love You. For those who don’t have it yet, is there somewhat of a theme here?
NBHD: Definitely. I think a lot of the songs have to do with love, and not necessarily exclusively a person/person love, and not exclusively positive or negative.
MC: Some of my favorite tracks are Let It Go and Flawless. The whole album is extremely refreshing. Is there a specific track that the crowd reacts to most?
NBHD: People seemed to catch on to Afraid before the album was even out. I think that song definitely resonates with people.
MC: I see you guys are on the road through the end of July. What is your favorite part about being on tour? Any crazy stories?
NBHD: Playing shows (now exclusively headline shows) in places so far from home and selling them out is a great feeling. Um, crazy stories… I won’t get into too much detail, but we recently broke a window playing Frisbee. Accidentally. [Laughs]
MC: How about venues? Any cities you are most excited about?
NBHD: The coasts are always fun. California & New York are undeniable. I’m excited to go back to Canada as well.
MC: There are so many young bands out there trying to be a part of the movement. How do you separate yourselves and keep your sound and style original?
NBHD: We aren’t a band. We are a unit… a group. We have this plan for all of the content that we put out. We don’t just put out songs. We put out content (music, videos, artwork, etc.). Everything is thought out & everything is done in-house by our team.
MC: I wouldn’t really classify The Neighbourhood into a specific genre of music. Would you agree?
NBHD: It just feels so forced to try and put it into anything too specific.
MC: So what is next after the tour? Back to recording?
NBHD: We should have some new music out relatively soon, actually…
MC: I feel you guys are well on your way, and wish you the utmost success. Any advice for bands starting out and our readers at home?
NBHD: Give it 100%. If you have a backup plan, you aren’t giving it 100%.
By: Maria Ciezak
There is a new buzz in the music world that goes by the name of Social Club. Fresh off of SXSW, and with a brand new album (Gamma Rays) under their belt, they are destined for greatness. I recently had the opportunity to chat with the band about their story, music, touring, and more. They are artists on the rise, so be sure to join the movement.
MARIA CIEZAK: For those who are unfamiliar with Social Club, can you provide a brief back story?
SOCIAL CLUB: Well, it all started a little over two years ago, when lead singer/guitarist John Levan and bass player James Spratley left a local hip hop band to start their own project. They started going to all the local open mic nights, and that is where they met drummer Jeffrey Litzman and keyboardist Thea Tochihara.
MC: Any crazy, inspirational story behind the name? I had to ask.
SC: [Laughs] Nothing really crazy. We felt the way we all came together to form the band, it was a very fitting name. We all have different backgrounds and personalities. We are bringing that all together to put out the best music we know how.
MC: How was the music scene growing up San Diego? Was there one?
SC: We actually didn’t grow up in San Diego. We are all transplants from different states. James is from Virginia Beach. Thea is from Denver, Colorado. John is from Charleston, WV. And Jeff is from Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas. The music scene in San Diego is awesome. And that is why we love playing venues like the Casbah, that has been around for a while.
MC: If you had to place your sound into a particular genre, could you?
SC: We really don’t like to. But I guess you force us to do so. We would say indie alternative pop rock. [Laughs]
MC: Tell us a little bit about your new album, Gamma Rays.
SC: Oh, we definitely shed a bunch of blood, sweat and tears over this album. [Laughs] Nah, it’s pretty much a feel-good album. We tried to stay true to ourselves and stuck with whatever came out, pretty much. We put all genres aside when it comes to writing music. And this album shows how our different backgrounds all came together.
MC: Now that age old question that I am always curious about, for I am the furthest thing from a musician: What comes first? The music or the lyrics?
SC: Definitely the music. We like to jam out at practice, just to see what comes out. And that is how a lot of our sounds came to be.
MC: What would you say you enjoy more? Studio time or live shows?
SC: Honestly, there is nothing better than live shows. You get to share the magnificent feeling of playing music to all your friends. And also it is great seeing their reaction to what you have created.
MC: If you weren’t making music, what would you be doing?
SC: If we weren’t making music, we would be listening to it. Let’s be honest, there really isn’t anything else to do in life, right? [Laughs]
MC: You are absolutely right in that statement, hence what I am doing here!
SC: Dream collaboration. That is one of the toughest questions for us. Probably Muse or The Killers. Actually any bands, MCs or DJs that are good at their craft and want to join forces to rock the world. This is now an open invitation. [Laughs]
MC: What social outlet is best for fans to connect with you?
SC: The best way to connect with us is to come out to one of our shows, or you can visit www.SocialClubJams.com, where we have any social media outlet you are most comfortable with.
MC: Now that the record is successfully out (and I highly recommend everyone to pick one up), what’s next?
SC: Next we will be rocking as many shows as possible and promoting the album Gamma Rays. We also have some video ideas we are gearing up for. So keep an eye out.
MC: Describe Social Club in five words.
SC: Your next favorite band, hopefully.
By: Rob Brayl
Creating a jam that’s soothing and unfiltered comes Austin-based Alpha Rev. These Texas alt-rockers are creating ripples with their new video Sing Loud, which is not only beautiful, but a memorable imprint for those who have yet to experience their music.
The track is the first single off their new album, Bloom, available now.
This Spring, you can catch the band hitting the road with Nashville singer/songwriter Ben Rector.
Check out the video for Sing Loud below.
Totally infatuated with this song!
By: Caitlin Hoffman
Croatia’s hoarding a dangerous force.
Meet Cojones, a musical European landmine. This band’s taking no prisoners and offering no apologies, ready to hit the road face-first.
Though they’re commonly described as psychedelic/stoner rock, I also sense a mainstream element to their set. From the underground they may be, but they could easily frolic in popular appeal. (Opening up for the Foo Fighters, for instance.)
Their rhythm section defies gravity, dragging back vibrations and settling your cells. The guitars sedate; the vocals liberate.
Listening with an objective ear, you can’t see much that merits changing. They hit the targets at which they aim and wield their instruments like industrial bulldozers. (You’d be happy to be run over.)
Their most recent public stir was when they played Stoned From the Underground 2012, one of the biggest underground festivals in the EU. Since then, they’ve been brewing DIY spirits. Their 2012 album Bend to Transcend was handmade and hand-printed by the band members themselves.
And they’re vegan! (What can I say? This girl swoons for rockers with big hearts.)
Lie back; light up.
By: Rob Brayl
Certain songs are like fuel. They take you places. Others are like pain medication. They get you through shit. When a song contains both of these elements, it’s a serious addiction waiting to happen.
That’s what this song is for me: a freakin’ addiction. I literally cannot stop playing it; I feel it in my veins. And while the music video was disappointing and weird (to see it, go find it for yourself), the song stands on its own. It’s rad and without flaw.
Check out Radioactive by Imagine Dragons below.
Love! Love! Love!
By: Rob Brayl
Every now and again, an artist pops up from out of nowhere and creeps into your headphones. That’s exactly the case in my experience with Olivia Sebastianelli. An obvious talent upon first listen, the song and video you’re about to witness is alluring and comforting, yet haunting and unsettling all at the same time.
This isn’t music fluff. This is the makings of a true artist.
When asked to describe her sound, her reply was just as unconventional: â€œI keep describing it as a cross between Fleetwood Mac and Foo Fighters, which everybody gets really confused about. Itâ€™s the melodies of Fleetwood Mac, and the way they construct their harmonies — everythingâ€™s so tight — with the punk and anger of Foo Fighters. That kind of vibe.â€
There ya go… Whatever it is, it’s working.
Olivia is certainly an artist to watch in 2013.
Video for Rose of Stone below.
By: Caitlin Hoffman
A Primitive Evolution are something to get excited about. When I first jacked in, I was startled not only by the maturity in their sound, but in the way it was so keen to resonate. Their music is easily met, easily embraced, and impossible to let go.
Children of both rock and the blues, this group adds unprecedented soul to what would otherwise dust as radio rock. Their h-core â€˜tude is rocked into sedation by a more gothic undertone, leaving you manic and mysterious.
These Toronto darlings arenâ€™t just in it for ignorant kicks. Rather, they take a cerebral front to their mission. So says Bret, their lead vocalist/guitarist: “Creation is evolution. Thatâ€™s what I figure weâ€™re trying to say with A Primitive Evolution. …We are very much at the beginning of the evolution of mankind. We have a long way to go as a species. We want our band to reflect that too, going off of what we feel, doing it out of instinct and evolving naturally; having some fun existing on this planet.”
Have fun? Their latest album The Prize will help you do just that. This recordâ€™s a thunderstorm and no mistake. The members themselves are pleased with its turnout too. Stephany (their house bassist/back-up vocalist/cello player) calls it: “the epitome of pure enjoyment of music”.
I canâ€™t quite put my finger on why I like them so much. Theyâ€™re like Queens of the Stone Age, but better. Couple that with intense, eye-popping music vids, and theyâ€™re nothing short of visionary. Take the visual masterpiece aka music video for Lord of Reason. With elements of urban horror, magical realism and satire, itâ€™s a trip not to be messed with.
So as far as A Primitive Evolutionâ€™s concerned, whatâ€™s the bottom line? Stu (the percussion master) ties it up nicely: “Get â€˜em hot and bothered. They should be excited about (the) music; surprised. As a musician, thatâ€™s the greatest reward.”
I like the way these guys think.
By: Rob Brayl
Not every artist or band has the ability to hold your attention hostage quite like Awolnation. Honestly, watching these dudes in action is like staring at your opponent during an intense game of poker via partycasino.com. This band delivers and captivates in a way all their own. And with much success (two million sales of their breakthrough single Sail in the US) under their belt, the band have released a new deluxe edition of their debut album Megalithic Symphony on iTunes, with six bonus live tracks.
Recorded at the Summit Music Hall in Denver last September as part of the bandâ€™s massive US tour, the deluxe release includes a new live version of the next UK single Kill Your Heroes (which came out earlier this week), as well as live versions of Guilty Filthy Soul, Sail, Soul Wars, All I Need and Burn It Down.
On top of the re-release comes some UK tour dates, where the band will be supported by Itch, the ex-frontman of The King Blues.
Upcoming Tour Dates:
13 February BIRMINGHAM, Institute
15 February LONDON, Heaven
16 February MANCHESTER, Academy 3
17 February GLASGOW, Garage
BTW, I’m pretty much obsessed with this video at the moment!
By: Maria Ciezak
One of my favorite new bands on the market, AWOLNATION, are constantly satisfying my ears. With notable songs such as It’s Not Your Fault and Burn It Down, this band has been on fire lately, pumping out singles all over active rock and indie radio.
I wanted to focus on All I Need, a song that means a lot, lyrically and figuratively, a song that is one of my favorite tracks to date.
Their sound is extremely unique and cannot be compared to anything out right now. They are hitting the road hard oversees in 2013, and hopefully will be coming back to the States in the near future.
If you haven’t heard their album Megalithic Symphony, be sure to pick it up, for they are definitely an artist on the rise.
Check out the lyric video for All I Need below.
By: Caitlin Hoffman
Just when you thought alt. rock lost its charm…
Enter Grown Up Avenger Stuff. (No, Iâ€™m not poorly attempting to describe a Joss Whedon film.)
GUAS are full of pep and punch. Theyâ€™re the new kids on the block with a band-birthday of about three years. And they are armed with awesome.
Though they sit on a traditional four-piece lineup, I feel theyâ€™re doing something different for the stage. Rather than losing all attention to the leading lady or getting lost in a generic swamp of sound, each member stands out while complimenting everyone else. Youâ€™re acutely aware of each instrument and the way they power up Deirdreâ€™s blazing rocket of a voice.
Johnâ€™s fingerwork is fantastic; Hunterâ€™s bass is the glue that holds the badass together; and Tylerâ€™s rhythm is so furious Iâ€™ll bet his drum sticks sizzle after a show.
I find them not only raw, but relatable. They look like real people who just so happen to eat, breathe and sweat music.
Theyâ€™ve got the same bite as Spiderbait, a similar gumption to Grace Potter and the Nocturnals. To the joy of audiences everywhere theyâ€™ve been globe-trotting, all for the sake of promoting their 2012 album, Alive.
This disc is short and bittersweet. It exhibits a surprising amount of musical maturity for a debut. Morning Noon and Night keeps you tied back to contemporary rock vibes, while songs like Here reflect a zeal that can only be attributed to punk influence. All in all, itâ€™s a moshpit birthed from their brainwaves.
The cherry on top of this smooth sundae? They produced Alive themselves. That kind of hands-on dedication really gets me tingling. Itâ€™s a big fat something when bands dare to take creative control into their capable hands. The result will almost always merit a thumbs up.
By: Rob Brayl
Los Angeles-based rock band Beta Wolf has released a video for their single Domino, and I’m diggin’ it! Taken from their latest EP, Just Before Morning, the clip keeps it simple yet effective, taking footage from the band’s performance from Ives Concert Park in Danbury, CT while on tour with genre heavyweights Daughtry.
Beta Wolf released Just Before Morning earlier this summer while submerged in the middle of a 3-week tour with Daughtry. Recorded in Bob Clearmountain’s Berkeley Street studio in Santa Monica, the band enlisted producer Fred Archambault (Avenged Sevenfold, Eighteen Visions) to create a memorable piece of rock.
Be the cool kid. Purchase the boys’ EP before their name gets plastered everywhere. Cuz let’s face it, it’s bound to happen.
By: Maria Ciezak
If I can somehow manage to sneak into The Sundance Film Festival, I will keep you guys up to date, just in case you may need to post my bail. Reason being, I just found out that Dave Grohl will be making his directorial debut at the festival with his new feature documentary film, Sound City.
The film is about the infamous recording studio in Van Nuys, California. As I have seen in my twenty-six years of life, Grohl can literally do no wrong, so I am excited to see what he can do on this side of the arts. Dave perceived the idea for Sound City after he purchased the legendary Neve 8028 recording console from Sound City Studios last year. He also became connected with the studio, as well as introduced to it, while recording that famous little album with Nirvana, Nevermind, back in the stone age of 1990.
While we all anticipate the greatness that Grohl is about to unleash on the world, let us all bask in his glory with some tunes. After the official Sound City trailer, of course.
By: Caitlin Hoffman
Brooklynâ€™s own, baby. Arc & Stones is ready to fill aching spaces and colour grey clouds. I could so see these two boys touring with Kings of Leon or any other bands whose leads breathe in song-smoke.
They just came out with a self-titled EP, and each track is deliberate in its own right. They seamlessly shift from hard-rock elements to sultry sorrow better befitting a coffee house.
If you need comfort soul-food, Arc & Stones is a must on the menu. Good for when youâ€™re feeling down or even worse, theyâ€™ve got the right dose of lyrical angst to be relatable, and enough harmonic drive to lift you up again. Whether theyâ€™re kicking anthems or crooning dusty melodies, theyâ€™re a heavy shot of radio rock.
Sometimes you can tell when the music is thoughtlessly spun in seconds, or if it originates from the gullet of the artistâ€™s core. Their tunes may not be the most groundbreaking earthquake on the block, but you canâ€™t deny that theyâ€™re for real. Whatâ€™s more identifiable than pain?
The rest is Silence.
By: Rob Brayl
Go Radio has premiered the official music video for new single Go To Hell.
The clip presents the Floridian four-piece in a story of post-breakup revenge, with a tongue-in-cheek performance on a bright yellow parade float alongside a marching band.
Featured on the band’s sophomore album Close The Distance, the song debuted at #54 on the Billboard Top 200, and is receiving rave reviews from critics:
“Go Radio have turned in the best album of their career.” -Alternative Press
In support of album’s release, the band recently kicked off the #GoToHell tour in the band’s hometown of Tallahassee, FL, and will continue their live onslaught through December.
Close The Distance is available now on iTunes and in stores.
Go Radio #GoToHell Tour Dates:
11.16 -Buffalo, NY @ Xtreme Wheels
11.17 – Gettysburg, PA @ Gettysburg College (supporting Timeflies)
11.18 – Teaneck, NJ @ Mexicali Live
11.20 – New York, NY @ The Studio at Webster Hall
11.21 – Poughkeepsie, NY @ The Loft
11.23 – Philadelphia, PA @ North Star Bar
11.24 – Canton, OH @ The Auricle
11.25 – Detroit, MI @ Shelter
11.27 – Grand Rapids, MI @ The Intersection
11.28 – Indianapolis, IN @ The Irving Theatre
11.29 – Joliet, IL @ Mojoes
11.30 – St. Paul, MN @ Station 4
12.1 – Iowa City, IA @ Gabe’s Oasis
12.2 – St. Louis, MO @ The Firebird
12.4 – Nashville, TN @ Rocketown
Go To Hell, y’all!