Tuesday, March 31, 2009

FREE Download: Wolfmother

Download the new Wolfmother single "Back Round" for FREE on their website: http://www.wolfmother.com/

It's pretty solid, and pretty much picks up where their self-titled album released in 2005 left off. Think Robert Plant wails and 70's psychedelic rock riffs. I'm loving it.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Music Picks

Download These Now!:
Turn Me Off (Audrye Sessions)
Eh, Eh [Nothing Else I Can Say] - (Lady Gaga)
Paris Is Burning (Ladyhawke)
The Only Thing I Have [The Sign] - (Ace Enders and a Million Different People)
Daughter (Loudon Wainwright III)

Anything off of The Format's Interventions And Lullabies
Dead Leaves And Dirty Ground (The White Stripes)

Friday, March 27, 2009

First Listen: Marilyn Manson's "We're From America"

First impression: typical Manson. The vendetta against religion and the American corporate machine continues. Worst of all, it's not even that hateful or heavy. *yawn*

See for yourself http://www.marilynmanson.com/ click "Download Exclusive Track"

The Prodigy Made Roseland Ballroom Their Bitch-- And Proceeded To Smack It Up

The Prodigy performed their first American gig of the year last night at the Roseland Ballroom in New York. The hardcore techno group that established their fame in the early 90’s was scheduled to take the stage at 10 p.m. with no support save for DJ Busy P spinning some tracks to warm up the crowd beforehand. The line was wrapped around the block, turning two corners as early as 8:30 p.m. despite the rain. And although the line was constantly being ushered into the building, its long length was maintained well past 9:45 p.m.

Roseland was wall to wall with ravers and glow sticks, with red spotlights illuminating escaping plumes of smoke from the crowd. The Prodigy kicked off their set 20 minutes late, but that was no big deal; these club kids packing the venue were obviously tripping balls and having a blast grooving to the thumping beats of the dark ambient beats exploding from the PA.

Within 30 seconds of taking the stage the hardcore techno group had the entire almost-capacity crowd bouncing with enough vigor to register as seismic activity. Vocalists Maxim Reality and Keith Flint owned the stage while Liam Howlett spun the group’s twisted beats from a semi-circle of equipment, adorned with the sign “Take me to the hospital”. A constant rainbow of strobe lights assaulted the audience, illuminating Keith’s impish prances and Maxim’s imposing frame. When the red lights at the front of the stage shone up at Keith, it was like looking at the devil himself. When not bouncing like a pogo stick, running an invisible track meet, or punching or humping the air, Keith occasionally posed half crouched as the red light danced on his face, head down turned but with his eyes turned up to the crowd with a mischievous grin that sent chills through even those who could see it from the back of the ballroom. He’s like an electronic version of Billy Idol.

The Prodigy performed tracks of the new “Invaders Must Die,” but the real crowd pleasers were old favorites like “Breathe,” “Firestarter,” and “Smack My Bitch Up,” with the latter saved for the encore (which was more like a second set considering four songs were played). The rare live track “Comanche” also made its way into the one hour set list.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

FREE Download: Marilyn Manson

Marilyn Manson will offer a free download of the first single off his highly anticipated new album The High End Of Low beginning March 27 through his official website. The single is called “We're From America."

This summer Manson will dominate the main stage at the Rockstar Energy Drink Mayhem Festival along with his new lineup including Twiggy Ramirez (back for the first time in close to a decade), as well as keyboardist Chris Vrenna, and dummer Ginger Fish.

Monday, March 23, 2009

My Encounter With Marky Ramone

I ran into Marky Ramone while exiting WSOU studios today. The elevator door opened and there he was: long fluffy black hair hanging over his eyes, and that Brooklyn mug that's almost always in a sneer. The drummer of the band that fathered punk rock was a little shorter than I expected, probably because Joey Ramone's towering frame made it hard to judge the size of the rest of them.

"You look good considering what happened in Mexico," I called, turning around as I exited.
"Thanks" he said with a short laugh (which coming from a Ramone sounds like "heh").
"You should have seen the van," chimed his companion.
"I'm sure. That sounded terrible"
"It's the only time I ever feared for my life," Ramone said, his face completely somber, peering up at me through his jet black bangs.
"Well, you really look great. See ya."

The whole time "I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend" was playing on my iPod. I hope he didn't hear that.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Billy Corgan Drives Another Band Member Away

Smashing Pumpkins drummer Jimmy Chamberlin quits the band.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Curtis Ward Fades Into Band's Horizon

Break out death core band Bring Me The Horizon announced the departure of rhythm guitarist Curtis Ward, citing personal differences. It was a mutual decision, and the band will continue the Rockstar Taste of Chaos tour with replacement Dean Rowbotham.

In an interview earlier this year with Alternative Press magazine, Ward revealed that he was practically broke with only 400 English pounds (approx $580) to his name. Bring Me The Horizon makes their money through merch sales as they signed away the rights to their recordings in a contract they signed when they were teenagers, therefore despite their rampant popularity they do not have large incomes. Ward is also partially blind in one eye and deaf in one ear.

While interviewing the band a few weeks ago at New York's Nokia Theater, I didn't notice any tension within the band. Ward was the most talkative of the group, even more so than front man Oli Sykes. Ward was very amiable, and full of smiles and charm. Here's a final "Cheers!" to you, mate, good luck with whatever is beyond the horizon.

(Super blurry, but it's the only one I have of just him backstage. It's the tattoo on the inside of his lip that says "LOLZ." Oli Sykes and Drummer Matt Nicholls have similar tattoos that they got together on their first American tour.)

Silversun Pickups Makes Me Swoon

I am obsessed with "Panic Switch," off of the Silversun Pickups' sophomore album Swoon (due out April 14 on Dangerbird). Heavily distorted guitars swirl into a sound filling every nook and cranny of the mind, while Brian Aubert's sand paper croon creates an eerie feeling of being watched. It's a delightfully sinister sensation, inspiring an adrenaline rush from artificial fear and an ache for the music to fill that void in your soul just one more time.

Swoon looks like a promising follow-up to their debut album Carnavas, a smash hit that turned the indie rock scene on its side with singles like "Lazy Eye" and "Well Thought Out Twinkles."

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Spotted: Sexy Lead Singer Of Rev Theory

Sexy-as-hell NJ native Rich Luzzi was spotted at the Papa Roach and Buckcherry show last night in his usual flawless mohawk. Although his band Rev Theory is on a two week break from touring with this crazy bunch, he was in town visiting relatives and two of his cousins wanted to see the performance. Luzzi graciously granted their wish and got them into the sold-out event. What a sweetheart!
Luzzi shared that Rev Theory plans to tour for the next year before they begin recording their third album. The hard rock band will continue shredding with Buckcherry and Papa Roach, but also have dates set up with Avenged Sevenfold.

Devils, Roaches, and Cherries

March 17, 2009: Charm City Devils, Papa Roach, and Buckcherry at the Starland Ballroom in Sayreville, NJ (Click for larger)
Above: Charm City Devils (John Allen)
Above: Charm City Devils (Jason Heiser) Above: Charm City Devils
Above: Charm City Devils Above: Charm City Devils (John Allen)
Above: Papa Roach (Jacoby Shaddix)
Above: Papa Roach (Jacoby Shaddix)
Above: Papa Roach (Jacoby Shaddix)
Above: Papa Roach (Jerry Horton)
Above: Papa Roach (Tobin Esperance)
Above: Papa Roach (Jacoby Shaddix)
Above: Buckcherry (Josh Todd)
Above: Buckcherry (Keith Nelson)
Above: Buckcherry (Xavier Muriel)
Above: Buckcherry (Josh Todd)

Above: Buckcherry (Josh Todd)

Jacoby Shaddix Gets Away With Murder

Jacoby Shaddix is no fraud. The head honcho of Papa Roach may seem overly morose in his lyrics, but the truth is, he lived it. Shaddix came a long way since the dark period of heavy alcohol and drug abuse that followed the band's breakthrough album Infest. He admits to practicing self-mutilation years ago, and was suicidal. These issues are reflected in the lyrics, which is no Hollywood sham to push album sales on angst ridden teens; it's Shaddix's lifeline reaching out to those who suffered like him.

Last night's show in Sayreville, NJ, Papa Roach gave the sold-out crowd what they paid for and more. The 10 song set list covered the past 10 years of their career, along with two songs off the yet to be released album Metamorphosis. During "Lifeline," the first single off the upcoming album, Shaddix took to the crowd and made the closest bar top his new stage. However, the most stirring part of the performance was "Scars." Shaddix brought the song to life and into a dimension that cannot be heard on an album. It was that moment that Jacoby Shaddix proved himself to be more than just a Hollywood rockstar, but a human being that overcame the demons in his life that no one else could even begin to imagine.

Set List:
Angels & Insex
To Be Loved
Time Is Running Out
Last Resort

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Dillinger's Escape Plan: EP of Remixes

Dillinger Escape Plan fans rejoice! The band announced on their Twitter five hours ago that they are working on an EP of DEP remixes. The band's last release was Ire Works in November of 2007. There have been reports that the band is working on some new material that will be released by the end of this year.

Music Picks

Download these tracks NOW!
Hail Destroyer (Cancer Bats)
Dirt Room (Blue October)
Zero (The Yeah Yeah Yeahs)
Heads Will Roll (The Yeah Yeah Yeahs)

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Karma Beats Up On Marky Ramone


The "Beat On The Brat" drummer Marky Ramone got a little taste of his own medicine recently while in Mexico, when he was attacked by crazed fans. When he finally managed to get inside the van, crowds of people began to rock the vehicle from side to side. As the van drive away, a man flung himself in its path. Ramone's van finally managed to pull away, and the unidentified man who put himself in front of the vehicle was found unharmed in a vehicle in hot pursuit.

Ramone and his band who just recently started touring called off all of their dates in Mexico as a result of the riot. They are all in air condition, although Ramone has several bruises and contusions on his body.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Manchester Meets New York

The Mercury Lounge on Houston Street hosted an exclusive performance by Southern indie rockers Manchester Orchestra on March 4, with a set list completely outfitted by tracks from their new album Mean Everything To Nothing (due out on April 21.)

“We’ve been home hanging out and this record is all done and shit so we might as well play it,” said singer Andy Hull to the tightly packed room of no more than a hundred.

Hull’s beard had grown out to Joaquin Phoenix status, and paired with a wool cap it completed the look of a crazed homeless man thrashing a guitar, belting passionate lyrics of angst and desperation in “Shake It Out”. His looks become deceiving and as the fierce guitars ease to a soft strumming, while Hull whispers soft pleas to a lost lover. The song launches back into lilting melodies with the swiftness similar to the mood swings of a teenager.

Immediately noticeable is Chris Freeman on keys, playing an enthusiastic air guitar in between exuberant percussion and twangy keys, prompting Hull to joke, “That boy on the keyboard is retahhded,” in a mock Southern drawl.

The first single off the album, “I’ve Got Friends” was met with excited hoots and applause as the audience sang along. Hull shouts the lyrics with eyes firmly shut until he is red in the face. He sings fervently and urgently, stirring intense emotions in anyone within an earshot.
For “Everything To Nothing,” Manchester Orchestra welcomed a guest vocalist on stage, who appears on the album for this track. Her soft voice sounded like the whispers of an angel when paired with Hull’s primal warblings.

Mean Everything To Nothing sounds like a collection of Southern lullabies intertwined with bouts of bitterness that puncture through with ferocity. Moments of softness on the album make it seem like Manchester Orchestra had slowed the world down to a stand still with the power their music, for our listening pleasure. Thanks, guys.

Set List:
100 Dollars
Black Man
My Friend Marcus
I’ve Got Friends
Shake It Out
Everything to Nothing
Now That You’re Home
I Can Feel A Hot One

Rockstar Taste Of Chaos Tour

The Rockstar Taste Of Chaos Tour recently blazed through New York and New Jersey, melting faces and snapping necks along the way.

In New York’s Nokia Theater in Times Square, Cancer Bats kicked off the official Rockstar Taste Of Chaos Tour lineup with a high energy 20 minute set that got the party started off right. Dynamic vocalist Liam Cormier bounded across the stage with unrelenting energy, spitting like a cobra, and even diving into the crowd at one point. Head bangers rejoiced as vocalist Cormier told the crowd, “all you need is a head, a neck, and a little bit of rhythm to head bang to this next song,” before launching into “Lucifer’s Rocking Chair.” Cancer Bats concluded their set with “Hail Destroyer” a scorching anthem for resentful teens.

The next night in Sayreville, NJ the adorable foursome Pierce The Veil ripped through a set of seven songs, concluding with their cover of Michael Jackson’s “Beat It,” which was absolute perfection due to Vic Funetes’s extremely nasal pitch. Bassist Jaime Preciado and front man Vic took turns leaping off any objects they had time to climb. Drummer Mike Fuentes was a fiend on the drums, following in the footsteps of fellow SoCal native Travis Barker, thus proving that Cali drummers beat it better (Tommy Lee anyone?)

Also in Sayreville, Four Year Strong stormed the stage in matching high school letterman jackets, looking like a gang of jocks from suburbia. They played a ten song set, ditching their jackets halfway through.

As Bring Me The Horizon’s crew set the stage for the facetious gang of Brits in New York, the anticipation filling the expanse of Nokia Theatre made it clear who the crowd was here to see. Teen girls in heavy eyeliner, choppy mullets, and skinny jeans squealed with every possible sighting of a BMTH member on the wings of the stage. The lights dimmed, and shit hit the fan. A deafening roar of pubescent teens greets the boys of Bring Me The Horizon, they themselves barely older than the average attendee. Frail bodies are passed over head, with no less than three crowd surfers at any given moment. Much to the delight of the crowd, Oli leapt into the masses and lingers for a minute while girls tore at his clothing, as he searched for his lost shoe. This is Beatle-mania of the new generation. Sykes’s guttural growl and scathing lyrics were delivered with mind blowing ferocity, leaving the house breathless after their set, showing New York what the edge of their seat was made for.

Thursday held it down for their home state on the night of their namesake at Starland Ballroom, playing to a crowd of new fans and familiar faces. Like a king presiding over his kingdom, singer Geoff Rickly perched proudly on his stage crate, singing to a sea of pumping fists. He wasted no time in descending from the stage and pressing himself to the barricade into the arms of adoring fans. Although Rickly did not dive into the crowd as he did the night before in New York’s Nokia Theater, the New Jersey crowd made up for it, as wave after wave of scrawny tweens were passed over head. This is what New Jersey is made of. The set’s gems included favorites like “Resuscitation Of A Dead Man,” Understanding In A Car Crash,” “Cross Out The Eyes,” and “Jet Black New Year.”

Greetings From The Pacific Northwest

Bellingham, WA, home of Death Cab For Cutie

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

A Little Taste Of Chaos (Photos)

Photos from the Taste Of Chaos Tour, Wednesday, March 4, 2009 at the Nokia Theater in Times Square. Click for larger. Photo Credits: Yours Truly (Maria Burks).

Above: Matt Nicholls from Bring Me The Horizon showing off his inner lip tattoo (it says "LOLZ")

Above: Cancer Bats (Jaye R. Schwarzer)
Above: Cancer Bats (Liam Cormier)

Above: Cancer Bats (Liam Cormier)
Above: Bring Me The Horizon (Matt Kean)Above: Bring Me The Horizon (Oliver Sykes)

Above: Bring Me The Horizon (Oliver Sykes)
Above: Bring Me The Horizon (Oliver Sykes)

Above: Bring Me The Horizon (Curtis Ward)

Above: Bring Me The Horizon (Curtis Ward)

Above: Thursday (Geoff Rickly)

Above: Thursday (Geoff Rickly)

Above: Thursday (Geoff Rickly)

Above: Thursday (Geoff Rickly)

Above: Thursday (Geoff Rickly)

Above: Thursday (Geoff Rickly)

Above: Thursday (Geoff Rickly)

Above: Thursday (Tucker Rule)

Above: Thursday (Geoff Rickly)