Saturday, March 31, 2007

Patti Smith Plays 3 Shows at Bowery Ballroom on April 24th

Patti Smith is playing three separate shows at the Bowery Ballrom on April 24th. This should be a wild night -- I have heard that each show will be a different set and Patti's new CD (Twelve - which is a CD of cover tunes) will be given free with each ticket purchased. Tickets for each show are only $17 and a "3-Session" ticket for all three shows is $51.

If you buy the 3-Session ticket, you get a bonus 7" single with two non-CD tracks which has Patti covering:
A: A Perfect Day (Lou Reed)
B: Here I Dreamt I was an Architect (The Decemberists).

You can also get the bonus 7" when you purchase Patti's new CD from select indie music stores (link).

Lamour Reunion Next Weekend at Mystic Lounge in Staten Island

Lamour ReunionI spent many a night at Lamour so it will be great to see everyone back for a reunion show. Evidently the response has been so strong, the reunion has been expanded to two night. I am definately going to be at Friday's show -- Bobby Blitz's new band Cursed is playing and Vito Bratta will be signing autographs. There is supposed to be an "all-star" jam so it would be incredible if Vito is a part of this.

Mystic Lounge is located at 2354 Arthur Kill Road, Staten Island. Their phone is 718-605-3900 and the website is

Soulfly Guitarist Marc Rizzo Finishes New CD and Schedules NYC Solo Show

Soulfly guitarist Marc Rizzo is finishing his new solo CD which is to be released later this year on Shrapnel Records. Rizzo has scheduled a brief East Coast tour which includes a NYC stop on April 13th at Underscore/Bar East. Other dates on this tour are:

April 07 2007 - New Wave Cafe - New Bedford, Massachusetts
April 13 2007 - Underscore aka Bar East - New York, New York
April 14 2007 - Mexicali Blues - Teaneck, New Jersey
May 05 2007 - The Arena - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

The Stalkers Play a Free Show Tomorrow at Pass Out Records in Williamsburg

The StalkersThe Stalkers are playing a free show tomorrow afternoon at Pass Out Records in Williamsburg. The show is at 3:00PM and Pass Out Records is located at 131 Grand Street. There are a couple bands playing with The Stalkers which include The Makeout Party (from Los Angeles)and Blondsai (from Chicago).

Friday, March 30, 2007

Thrones, Growing and Plotkin/Wyskida Playing in Brooklyn Tomorrow (Mar. 31)

Todd P has a big show tomorrow night at a new venue in Brooklyn. There are a lot of great acts on this bill for only an $8 ticket.

TroublemanUnlimited reports that the "GROWING's going on a tour of Europe with Thrones and WOLF EYES. Should be fun. GROWING will have their new record entitled VISION SWIM with them in limited tour pressing form. The pressing is limited to 100 with 6-color screened and hand assembled/glued covers by Andrew and Sara of Wacky Prints. These covers are REALLY REALLY nice looking, and were very expensive to make."

Here are the details about tomorrow's show:

49 S 2nd St btwn Wythe & Kent | Williamsburg, Brooklyn
L to Bedford, JM to Marcy, G to Metropolitan | 8pm | $8 | ALL AGES

:: Thrones
:::: Ocrilim
:::::: Growing

:: Child Abuse
:::: Microwaves
:::::: Plotkin/Wyskida
:::::::: Little Women

"The Forms craft wiry, punchy indie pop. The singer's silvery voice soars like the album's namesake. Keep an eye and an ear out." - Pitchfork "The Forms are one of the most exciting, if not one of the best, new acts in indie rock right now. It is unbelievable how many musical ideas they get across." -Popmatters

"The band intertwines folk elements, along with classical composition chops and a strange sense of melody, to its bass-heavy atmospheric doom. This is a band truly deserving of the word "epic," and their tales of seamen gone astray rival anything put out in their concept albums. It's just damned good and I wish I'd found them sooner." -

"Like a vivid collision-course journey through shadowlands of our fears and neuroses, Two Ton Boa's grinding musical landscape is equally unsettling, captivating and enveloping." - SxSW

[ 31 KNOTS ]
31 Knots is on Polyvinyl and make "streamlined indie-prog - but the importance of 31 Knots's rhythm section, the two Jays (Pellicci and Winebrenner), shouldn't be underplayed: Their supple, delicately shifting armature is a vital component of the songs' impact. But the central figure in the band is Joe Haege, who's responsible for the lyrics, vocals, guitars, samples, and piano. It's Haege's voice that first draws you to 31 Knots-- it's a powerful instrument, evoking operatic singers from Jason Molina to Jeff Buckley to Craig Wedren. Haege forgoes the mealy-mouthed style of the day and sings from the diaphragm; his voice is resonant and clear as a bell." -

"Grayceon is a composite group of sorts. Featuring Max Doyle (guitars) and Zack Farwell (drums) of excellent San Fran thrashers Walken, the band’s lineup is rounded out by one Jackie Perez Gratz on cello and vocals. Gratz is a veteran of long-running Relapse act Amber Asylum as well as a new member of the up-and-coming Giant Squid, not to mention a contributor to albums by the likes of Today is the Day and Neurosis, so you could say she’s something of a genre-buster veteran. It certainly comes out in Grayceon’s songwriting; this trio’s sound is immediately distinct and unusual. Highly recommended." - Metal Review

Joe Preston, one time member of MELVINS, and later on HIGH ON FIRE, delivers bonecrushing solo-bass action with miles of bass rig stacks and mounds of pedals. Awesome and awe-inspiring spectacle.
-- SITE / MP3s

"Ocrilim is the latest project from legendary guitarist Mick Barr. Admirers of Mick’s previous work with Orthrelm, Octis, and Crom Tech, will recognize his unmistakable sound, a virtuosic welding of metal-guitar expertise with influences as diverse as late-era Coltrane and Master Musicians of Joujouka. But it won’t take long to realize that this shows a new side of Mick Barr. Though still seriously heavy, the songs have a more deliberate compositional component. Themes and variations recur throughout, giving the complexity of Mick’s guitar work a new level of harmonic depth, like an extended suite of string duos. The record ends up sounding like the improbable, awesome child of Beethoven, black metal, and drone-pioneer Giacinto Scelsi." - I and Ear Records

Two-piece "enveloping waves of finely wrought feedback and static that tap into the cosmos' universal hum - holy whorls of drones." - Portland Mercury. Growing have records out on Kranky Records, Zum and Animal Disguise, and are soon to release an album on MegaBlade / Troubleman Unlimited. "Reach for an initial word, a label - say Doom Metal - then watch, as the demonic guitars slowly morph into demonstrative bliss. Drone may come a bit closer to the truth, but only slightly, as silence plays an equally significant role in the proceedings. Alas, Growing's anomalous sounds dwell in perpetual nigh-fidelity, permeating the gaps between equalizer settings with evasive intent, frustrating any attempt at optimization, and therefore, classification." - Luke Calzonetti, Child Abuse

Luke Calzonetti plus Oran (x X27, x Cop on Fire) plus bass - keyboards, metaloid effects, screaming, distorted bass destruction, and plodding, hypnotic drum bursts. "Total blissful fast/stacatto jello-sounds for the new punks. CHILD ABUSE place audience members into complete aural convulsion and, at the same time, drench them in their own metaphorical I vomit. How? CHILD ABUSE combine the best of heavy machine gun spurts of atonal tech-metal to confusing off time blurps, growls and howls to 70s mud groove rock improvisations with the spirits of Drumbo and Carl Nielson hovering ominously overhead." Members have had stints in San Francisco mainstays Caroliner Rainbow, Mesh, Murder Murder and NYC's X27." - Luke Calzonetti. Recordings out on Folding Cassettes.

"In the anti-tradition of whitebread Bay Area thrash metal, the violent morass of New York no wave, and a familiarity with Ralph Records insanity, Microwaves draws from a palette that is somehow as wide as it seems limited. Kuzy spits tonality-impaired riffs like so much chaff from a surgically calibrated tree shredder. MacGregor processes his fretless bass with all manner of effects, often rendering it as more a bowel-rumbling presence than an instrument. When the two "groove" along to Roman's cyborg clatter, it is more the exception than the norm. The dual vocal attack of MacGregor's narrations from the edge and Kuzy, the detached town crier - seals the deal. Indeed, Microwaves pride themselves in creating a blues-free vacuum in a shot-and-beer milltown rife with 12-bar ponytail-growers." - Microwaves HQ

"Plotkin & Wyskida are a of stream-of-consciousness invention for guitar and drums. Themes rise, permutate into new themes and then fall into chaos. The dissonance becomes melodic upon further investigation. Rhythms stutter and threaten to solidify, but then refuse. Too dirty to be jazz, yet too free to be rock, their work lies slightly beyond these restrictive terms." - Ars Nova

Ben Greenberg-guitar, Darius Jones- Alto saxophone, Jason Nazary- Drum set, Travis Laplante- Tenor saxophone

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Mason Jennings Plays Three Shows in NYC in April

Mason JenningsMinneapolis' Mason Jennings plays three shows in the area in support of his major label debut Boneclouds. This is an impressive CD so I am expecting Jennings' live show to be equally strong.

Here are the upcoming shows:

April 13 - Beacon Theatre (Supporting Guster)
April 18 - Luna Lounge, Brooklyn
April 21 - Gramercy Theatre, Manhattan

New Tori Amos Single Big Doll Premiers on AOL Music

Tori Amos' new CD American Doll Posse is scheduled to be released on May 1st. The first track, Big Wheel, premiers on AOL Music today along with previews of two other songs from the CD.

Tori describes Big Wheel as

"'Big.' One of my favorite words, along with 'Little.' Now if I'm a guy, I'm probably going to prefer the word 'Big' when associated with my abilities, rather than my other favorite word. As a woman, I don't mind at all if the whole world thinks that I have a Big Aspiration to straddle that piano stool every night for over 100 shows by Christmas. I don't mind that at all."

Milwaukee Metal Fest Announces Undercard

I just received this press release...With round-trip tickets from LaGuardia to Milwaukee currently selling for under $250, this has really gotten me thinking about trying to make it out to this show.

Milwaukee Metal Fest XIX is proud to announce that the majority of our undercard has been booked! Undercard bands are featured, non-headlining bands. 36 featured bands are listed below. Though the list is substantial, it's not quite all of them! We'll be making more undercard announcements in a few days.

Many of you are chomping at the bit to know who the main headliners are. Well, folks, me too. We are working hard to get them confirmed.

The Undercard:

ACHERON (Performing The Rites of The Black Mass Set)

Milwaukee Metalfest XIX May 11-12, 2007, Waukesha Expo Center, Waukesha, WI
Pre-party: May 10, 2007, venue to be announced.

For more information visit,,

Sunday, March 25, 2007

The Young Knives - Voices of Animals and Men CD/DVD Review

The Young KnivesI have really enjoyed this disc and the bonus DVD adds to the fun. Musically, The Young Knives sound somewhat like The Jam or Stiff Little Fingers but they also incorporate the start/stop rhythms made popular by Gang of 4. Guitarist Henry Dartnall and his brother "House of Lords" have solid voices for this type of music (think Jimmy Pursey and/or Bruce Foxton) and share and trade off vocals throughout this disc.

This disc is well produced but shouldn't be confused with the slick pop sounds of Green Day or Franz Ferdinand -- many of these songs are played with the same urgency that The Jam had in their day. The songwriting is solid across this disc and the band is able to change and explore different sounds and tempos without losing their core sound. All of this keeps the disc interesting from start to finish.

There wasn't a lyric sheet with the disc so I haven't yet made out all of the words to the songs but what I have heard is interesting. A number of the songs are narratives in the style of the Stan Ridgeway-era Wall of Voodoo and highlight the band's dark and wicked sense of humor.

The DVD is quite enjoyable as well. It features 6 songs from a 2005 performance in London and includes two previous unreleased tracks. There are also some Monkees-ish non-sequiturs between tracks that add to the band's charm. There are also 9 videos that follow the band's live concert that play upon the band's humor and highlight their strong songwriting skills.

As this disc is priced lower than most single CDs ($14 on Amazon), I would consider this a "must have".

Previous Posts:
Review and Pictures from the Band's Show at Luna Lounge, Brooklyn [link]

The Young Knives Main Website [link]
The Young Knives MySpace Page [link]

Time of Orchids Headline Water Street Lounge, Brooklyn on Friday, March 30th

Time of Orchids @ Water Street Lounge, BrooklynWater Street Lounge continues booking some interesting acts each weekend. Here are the bands that are playing this Friday:

Time of Orchids
Hazel Rah (mem. Friendly Bears)
Chubby Behemoth
A Three Ring Circus

8:30 - A Three Ring Circus
(as described on their myspace page):a wild depression-era bum canudleing with Stravinsky and Philip glass at a morose shadow puppet performace somewhere in java whilist lou reed and steven reich mutually masturbate behind the curtains.

9:30 - Chubby Behemoth
The Behemoth Returns! These guys were great the last time they played Water Street. They work from a definate Jazz foundation with compositions streatched and pulled into many different genres. Avant-fusion-thrash-rock?

10:30 - Hazel Rah
The Hazel Rah Returns! Tim Byrnes of Friendly bears is the brains behind this operation. That's all you need to know! You're psyched now!

11:30 - Time of Orchids
Time of Orchids reviews
"Seeing TIME OF ORCHIDS live is a crazy experience. While some songs top out at 10 minutes, moving from disjointed metal to eerie dream pop, others are 55 seconds of pure insanity. Their new Sarcast While features vocals by Julee Cruise and is out now on John Zorn's Tzadik Records." - Village Voice "Best of NY" issue, 10/05 ("Best Epic Avant Rock")

Shows are all ages and admission is only $10.

Exclusive Interview with Jon Modell from Car Bomb (Relpase Records)

I had the pleasure of speaking with Jon Modell, bassist for Car Bomb, this past Friday. Jon was nice enough to allow me to record the conversation so here is a link to both the podcastView RSS XMLand the mp3.

Car Bomb @ Lit Lounge, NYC

Car Bomb has a few upcoming shows in the area:

April 1, 2007 @ Crazy Donkey, Long Island with Body Count(Ice-T)
April 21, 2007 @ Club Europa, Brooklyn with Years of Fire(x-Chimaira)

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Pablo Returns to the Mercury Lounge on March 28th

Pablo's latest CD Half the Time was released late last year on Curb Appeal Records and is continuing to get great reviews. To lift a quote from the band's website "[vocalist]Paul Schalda has a ghost's voice, an old haunted soul that shivers its way up through his mouth to share its cracked-glasses view of the world with those of us lucky enough to listen."

This should be a good show and tickets are only $10. Check out some of the press quotes that Schalda and Pablo have earned over the last few months.

“My boy Pablo is the real deal.” - AOL MUSIC

“New York band Pablo’s release is one of the most honest and personal albums of 2006…Schalda’s distinct and heart aching voice bring out the kind of emotion you can immediately identify with and can’t ignore.” - John Richard KEXP and

“Acoustic-laden, folk influenced project called PABLO, whose “Half the Time” marks a new direction for the artist, one which provides a fine foundation for his haunting and cigarette-roughed voice.” - New City Chicago

“This is a record that you wouldn’t mind getting caught singing along with it at a stoplight. Chances are that you won’t need much coaxing. This is one of the better debuts of the year to date.” - Wonkavision
New York's Pablo is the vehicle for that voice and the lives it's lived. Previously heard draped over the Pavement-influenced treble clang of outerborough indie rock heroes AWEK (see "NY: The Next Wave" on Kanine Records), Schalda's distinct and affecting vocals stand at the center of Pablo, drawing chills from the tight economy of his lyrics and conveying something deeper than most words usually get across anyway. It's smart music that connects at gut level, a rare treasure in a crowded space. Clipped stories prop themselves up against solitary acoustic guitar, or find a full body in the stellar and spare accompaniment provided by brother Will Schalda (ex-REALISTICS) and his varied keys, wife Maggie Schalda's harmonies, and the Strandberg Brothers' ample multi-instrumentation.

The result is a sound singular enough to equally evoke Odetta and the Replacements, and one that's perked up the ears of KEXP's "John in the Morning" and landed the outfit support slots up and down the East Coast with Matt Pond PA, Earlimart, Brendan Benson, myself and more. On the heels of a well-received self-released EP, Pablo's first full-length recording “Half The Time” is out on Curb Appeal Records.

Pablo's Main Website [Link]
Pablo's MySpace Page [Link]

Kristin Hersh (50 Foot Wave) - Legal Music Download

Kristin Hersh & 50 Foot WaveAfter a few acoustic solo tours, Kristin Hersh formed 50 Foot Wave in 2003 as an electric power-trio. Even though the band features Muses bassist Bernard Georges, 50 Foot Wave is a departure from the Muses' sound (but not in a bad way). Lyrically, Hersh's themes are the same as the past (emotional and confrontational) but her singing style has shifted to a throaty growl. This is pretty interesting stuff and worth the time to download.

The "FreeMusic!" EP was released in late 2005 via Hersh's main website. Below are links to the songs and the cover art.

1. Hot Pink, Distorted
2. Vena Cava
3. Pretty Ugly
4. Animal
5. The Fuchsia Wall
FreeMusic Cover Art [Link]

There are a couple other interesting 50 Foot Wave live performances and downloads that I have found on the net.

- Streaming video of 50 Foot Wave Live @ Twist and Shout (Record Store) [Link]
- Downloadable audio of 50 Foot Wave Live @ Mercury Lounge, NYC 6-14-2005 [Link]

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

New Tori Amos CD American Doll Posse due May 1st

Tori Amos' new CD, American Doll Posse, is due to be released on May 1st.
Tori Amos - American Doll Posse

Tori has posted an audio message about the new CD and here is the track list:

Yo George
Big Wheel
Bouncing off Clouds
Teenage Hustling
Digital Ghost
You Can Bring Your Dog

Mr. Bad Man
Fat Slut
Girl Disappearing
Secret Spell
Devils and Gods
Body and Soul

Father's Son
Programmable Soda
Code Red
Roosterspur Bridge
Beauty of Speed

Almost Rosey
Velvet Revolution
Dark Side of the Sun
Posse Bonus
Smokey Joe

Tori's Main Website (link)
Tori's MySpace Page (link)

The Young Knives - Luna Lounge, NYC March 20, 2007

The Young Knives put on a fabulous show last night at Luna Lounge. I strongly recommend catching their show at Annex on Friday night, which is also the last night of the tour. (Tomorrow's show at the Mercury Lounge is sold out) The band will be playing big rooms soon so catch them in the clubs while you still can.

The Young Knives - Luna Lounge, Brooklyn
TimeOut New York dismissed the band as being Clash wannabes. This description isn't even close. The band has a unique sound that I would compare to a cross between Gang of 4, The Jam and Stiff Little Fingers. Before last night, I hadn't seen a bass player whom I would compare to Bruce Foxton.

Young Knives - Luna Lounge, Brooklyn

Young Knives - Luna Lounge, BrooklynI hate to slag another band in a review but I can't help comparing this show to The View's show at the Mercury in January. What a night and day difference....The View played a 30 minute set to a sold-out room and I spent the first fifteen minutes wondering why they sounded like a Star Spangles cover band. The Young Knives played almost an hour to a half-full room and balls-out rocked from the first song to the last.

Young Knives - Luna Lounge, Brooklyn
I never see multiple nights on any band's tour but last night's show was that impressive that I am very tempted to hit the Annex show on Friday. If tickets are still available, I'd get them quickly.

The Young Knives debut CD is out on Rykodisc (in the US) and is packaged with a bonus DVD that contains a live performances from a show in London along with a number of the band's videos. I'll be posting a review of the CD/DVD in the next few days.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Jesse Malin - Legal Music Downloads

Jesse MalinThis week I want to take a look at Jesse Malin's performance on World Cafe on March 1st. I found this podcast on iTunes and...unfortunately, it isn't worth the download.

The tracks I have heard from Jesse's new CD are great and he gives a good interview BUT the World Cafe podcasts are heavily edited. For instance, Jesse starts into a great live version of Don't Let Them Take You Down and it fades out after a minute. I didn't realize (until the end of the podcast) that World Cafe podcasts are just teasers to get you to stream the full show from NPR's website.

This has nothing to do with the podcast but I find it interesting that most of the current interviews with Jesse skip over his post-D Generation bands PCP Highway and Bellvue. (From NPR's site -- D Generation broke up in 1999, and Malin launched a solo career). I thought both bands were great and saw Bellvue many times.

After listening to a great Robyn Hitchcock podcast last week which originally aired on WNYC, the World Cafe podcasts are a disappointment.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Modest Mouse CD Giveaway

Contest is closed and winners notified
Modest MouseI have 5 copies of the latest CD from Modest Mouse to give away. Just click on the Contest Entry link and send us your full name and mailing address. One entry per person please.

All entries must be received no later than March 31, 2007. Winners will be notified via E-Mail.

For more info on Modest Mouse, check out these links:

Modest Mouse's Main Website

Modest Mouse on MySpace

Scalp Frattelis Tickets and Get Rich Quick

I have a friend who really likes The Fratellis and we unsuccessfully tried to get tickets for their show at Studio B. Is this band really that hot that scalped tickets are going for $100 - $200 (check out eBay and Craigslist)? I am very curious if these scalped tickets are actually selling.

At a 500% markup, this is more lucrative than the stock market...

Brett Scallions (Fuel, The X's) To Replace Ian Astbury in The Doors

Brett Scallions, most recently of The X's, has been picked as new singer for The Doors (Riders on the Sotrm). Brett has the following quote on his MySpace page:

"Well, we got the new singer. Brett Scallions from Fuel. He's going to be great! Big voice, commanding stage presence. Prowls like a cat. 6 feet tall, 165 lbs. Blond spiked out hair. Wears leather like it's licorice. I'm really excited about his joining the band. We auditioned him on the day after Robby and I received our Star on Hollywood Blvd. Two other guys came down (they will remain nameless) but Brett blew them away. Robby, Tom Vitorino (Riders manager) and I looked at each other and said "He's the one!" The next day we called Brett back and went to work. This is going to be serious fun. And the new songs are going to be great with Brett's voice on them. I can't wait to tour and for all of you to see him. It's a new era!"

- Ray Manzarek

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Lola Danza debuts Naadu at Water Street Lounge, Brooklyn on March 31st

I have been listening to some mp3s of Ms. Danza and have liked what I have heard. I am also intrigued by an artist that is going back to the concept of combining art and music as haven't seen anyone try this since the early days of punk. I haven't seen Ms. Danza perform live but she is getting great press for her live shows. Give a listen to the mp3s and check out the show.

From Avant-Garde CD "Live At Rutman's" Boston MA, Recorded June 2nd 2005
Untitled 1
Untitled 2

The enchanting vocalist and composer, Lola Danza debuts her project Naadu, with visual artists: painter Jacqueline Chachitz and installation artist Meaghan Bates Saturday, March 31st 2007 at 8pm at the Water Street Lounge (66 Water St. (718.625.9352 in DUMBO Brooklyn, NY 11201-1048).

The project Naadu infuses two mediums: music and visual art. Naadu celebrates the organic, the spiritual and the primal creation of music and art at its most vulnerable state through improvisation. Naadu allows music and visual art to become one, the painter another member of the band, while the installation artist transforms space and time.

Ms. Danza combines Jazz, Avant-garde, World, Classical, Post Modern Pop and Americana music. Danza's created a new idiom in Jazz. Lola’s original compositions evoke images of impressionistic and abstract paintings rich in texture and colour. She sings beautiful flowing melodies and creative improvised lines with effortless mastery, Danza's voice is rich, warm and resonant, with a four-octave range and vast array of vocal techniques. Lola's music reveals a special connection to her soul that cultivates mutual inspiration between the musicians and captivates the audience.

Visual artist, Chachitz, provides intense, bold, thought provoking, raw, complex, innocence - the paint speaks for itself, using its own language. The physical reality of Ms. Chachitz’s painting is about exploring the fundamental process of creating, returning to the act of creating with no preconceived notions. Manipulating the canvas, creating and destroying figures and forms, spontaneously flowing with and against all direction - color, texture, shape, and the gestural brush strokes of each motion bring context to chaos.

Meaghan Bates' drawing concerns altering the states of time and space. The mark making is done with the intent to displace time and recognizable space in order to allow for looseness of thought in the viewer and the artist as the work is being made. When interrupted, the fragility of time and common space is evident. Materials such as Kozo paper and pastel or Sumi ink relate directly to the artist's interest in investigating fragility as a universal quality.

Ms. Danza is joined by musicians John Lockwood- Acoustic Bass, Garth Stevenson- Acoustic Bass and Nat Mugavero- Drums.

With Passion - What We See When We Shut our Eyes CD Review

With PassionImagine a death metal band whose music is anchored by a guitarist that sounds like a Yngwe Malmsteen disciple. With Passion's music goes beyond the boundaries of technical death metal as the soaring guitar leads (which carry across all tracks) are closer to jazz-oriented power chords than the blistering speed metal of many tech-metal contemporaries. Across this disc, the music takes many twists, ranging from typical death metal stomp to soft melodic interludes -- often within the same song. The musical prowess of the band and diversity of sounds keeps this disc interesting through repeated listenings.

The band just finished filming their first video for the song "Pale Horse Rider" and have posted some stills from from the video shoot (link). The video is described as "dark and evocative, the shoot...capture(s) the band’s live performance coupled with a horror themed storyline that is sure to accentuate the eerie sentiment of the song." A release date for the video hasn't been announced but it looks like this will be something to watch for.

The band has just started a US tour and will be playing Club Europa in Brooklyn on April 23rd. I haven't (yet) seen the band play live but I have been watching some of the band's live clips on YouTube (below) and am looking forward to the show.

What We See When We Shut Our Eyes will be released on Earache on May 8, 2007.

Main Website (link)
MySpace Page (link)

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Scott Ian (Anthrax) Is Appearing at Manny's Music on Thursday, March 15th

Scott Ian - Manny's MusicAnthrax guitarist Scott Ian announced on his MySpace page that he will be appearing at Manny's Music in NYC this Thursday.

I'll be appearing this THURSDAY NIGHT - MARCH 15 for RANDALL AMP NIGHT @ Manny's Music on 156 West 48th ST in NYC. Come on down and crank it with me. cheers, SI

Snake Eyes Seven CD Review and News

Snake Eyes SevenCanadian heavy metal act Snake Eyes Seven's debut CD will be released this spring and the band is playing the Milwaukee Metal Fest on May 11-12th at the Waukesha Expo Center in Waukesha, WI.

I have been listening to a pre-release of this CD and have been quite impressed. The band's bio describes their sound as "vintage Black Sabbath infused with Rammstein". I can hear the Black Sabbath influence as the band has a down-tuned doom-influenced sound. I really don't hear the Rammstein influence -- I would compare the band's sound to a doom influenced Skid Row or the more metal leanings of later-day Christian Death.

The band members have an interesting musical history as members have played in Into Eternity, Kick Axe, Wrathchild and Love Hunter. While S.E.S. has some noticable influences from its members' previous bands, their sound is pretty unique as it brings a refreshing new look to the guitar rock sound of the late 80s and early 90s

The songs on this disc are all strong rockers but none of the tracks are too hard to scare off radio play. The band has been rumored to be on OzzFest this year and that should give this CD the attention it deserves. The tracks that I particularly liked are Bitter Pill as it has great guitar hooks and vocals and the Christian Death sounding goth/doom track Devil with a Rosary.

The band is supposed to have a strong live show so hopefully the band will do a full US tour after the CD is released.

- The band's main website (link)
- The band's MySpace page (link)
- Three tracks from this disc streaming on (link)

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

The Pipettes, Luna Lounge, NYC March 12, 2007

Last night was my first time at the Luna Luna since its reopening in Williamsburg. I really enjoyed the show -- The Booze (pictures to follow) were reminicent of the 1965 version of the Rolling Stones and The Pipettes were simply a lot of fun.

As this was my first time in the club - my general comments are great sound and great sight lines.The Pipettes - Luna Lounge, March 12, 2007
The Pipettes - Luna Lounge, March 12, 2007
The Pipettes - Luna Lounge, March 12, 2007
The Pipettes - Luna Lounge, March 12, 2007
I picked up The Pipettes set list as I was leaving the club:
- Intro
- Baby Don't Leave
- Yr Kisses
- Why Did You Stay
- Your Love For Me
- Cuz It's Not Love
- Diuretics
- Hurts 2 C U
- Guess Who
- Tell Me What
- Really That Bad
- I Love You
- True Love Waits
- One Night Stand
- Judy
- Dirty Mind
- Pull Shapes

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Quiet Riot - NYC Tour Dates and Rehab CD Review

I have been a Quiet Riot fan for years and one of my frustrations is that the band never seems to play in Brooklyn or Manhattan. I think the band's last show in the city was 2003 at B.B. King's. I rarely go to shows outside of the area but last year I drove to Staten Island to see the band's show at the St. George Theatre and it was a fabulous show. The band looked and sounded better than they did in 2003.

Finally, Quiet Riot are playing a show in the city. They are playing the Canal Room on April 6th. (There is another show in the area on April 7th at the Starland Ballroom in Sayreville, NJ)

The band is continuing to tour behind their CD Rehab, which was released late last year on Chavis Records. This CD has been on my iPod for the last few weeks and I really like the band's change in sound. The glossy production and party-rock sound of past releases is gone and the band's current sound is harder and more blues oriented. A point of comparison would be Humble Pie or the David Coverdale lineup of Deep Purple. The Deep Purple comparison seems particularly appropriate as Glenn Hughes sings and plays on a few cuts, including a fabulous cover of Evil Woman (which was recorded by Spooky Tooth in the late 60s).

The band sounds in great form on this release. There is one track that is a throwback to "party rock" sound (It Sucks to be You ) but, other than this, the band's sound is firmly routed in early 70's British Rock. Some of my favorite cuts are South of Heaven, Black Reign and Old Habits Die Hard. The later song even features a gospel chorus which fits perfectly within the song.

The band has an integrated sound on this disc and all instruments and vocals flow together. Prior to listening to this disc, I hadn't heard of session guitarist Neil Citron before. He plays some amazing leads and Tony Franklin (x-The Firm), Frankie and Kevin all sound great. As great as the band sounds on disc, the touring lineup that includes Alex Grossi and Chuck Wright sounded even better at the Staten Island show last year so Neil and Tony's contributions aren't necessarily missed. (I still would like to see Kevin sing live with Glenn Hughes though).

You can find all Quiet Riot news through Frankie Banali's website. There are a couple of interesting interviews posted to Frankie's site that are worth checking out.

- Frankie discusses Rehab track-by-track - Link
- interviews Frankie on the (then) new release - Link

Robyn Hitchcock - Legal Music Downloads

I continue to be amazed at the high-quality legal downloads that I am finding on the net.

Robyn Hitchcock & Venus 3Here is a 25 minute show on which Robyn Hitchcock and the band appeared last November. The full band plays Adventure Rocketship and Ole! Tarantula live in the studio and Robyn gives a pretty interesting interview.

Here is a link to the WNYC page where you can download the podcast. I also ran across a series of live videos from Ole! Tarantula on and here is a link to the page.

Robyn is playing with Venus 3 at the Knitting Factory on March 27th and 28th. Tickets are still available for both shows and are $25.00.

Friday, March 09, 2007

Additional Tickets for The Pipettes' Show at Luna Lounge Just Released

The PipettesLuna Lounge just released a handful of tickets to The Pipettes' sold out shows on Sunday and Monday. Get 'em quick!

Tickets are available through Ticketweb.

Too Much Joy Reunites for First Show in Ten Years

We sleep on floors and live on crumbs,We're a bunch of ugly bums.
A great idea when we were smashed...
Turning anger into cash.
To create, you must destroy.
Smash a glass and cry... Too Much Joy

Too Much Joy is playing a one-off all ages show at the Knitting Factory on May 4th. The band will be playing as a five-piece which will include both original bassist Sandy Smallens and later-day replacement William Whittman. This show is to celebrate Tommy Vinton's retirement from the NYPD.

Everyone has a band that was the soundtrack to their youth. Too Much Joy (along with Material Issue) were major parts of mine. Living in DC at the time, Too Much Joy seemed to headline quite a number of WHFS shows and you couldn't turn on the radio in the mid-90s without hearing a track from Cereal Killers. For whatever reason, the band never seemed to turn the corner and they ended up "fading away".

With the band members now living in different cities, this is probably the only chance to see this great band back together.

Check out some of the audio and video links a ticket to the show! I don't know if the show will sell out but the band certianly has the talent to pack the room.

Too Much Joy's website:

From the CD Cereal Killers: William Holden Caufield
From the CD Cereal Killers: Crush Story

Thursday, March 08, 2007

The Hazey Janes are Playing Union Hall Tomorrow Night (March 9th)

I don't know how I didn't see this before tonight as this looks like a great show.

Scotish power-pop band (think Big Star, not today's alt-pop nonesense) The Hazey Janes play their second ever New York show tomorrow night at Union Hall. The band got a great writeup from The Big Takeover for their show last week at Pianos. Tickets for the Union Hall show are only $8.

"The Hazey Janes played last night from 11:15 until 12 so you would've still been able to catch them. And you should've -- they were phenomenal. There were barely 20 people at Pianos to see them (including a couple from Michigan and some from Philly!), but they were so frickin' good that I almost wanted to run outside and gather more people to see what they were missing. The combination of hot playing and, quite frankly, mind-blowing harmonies (Alice Marra's amazing voice is even better live than on record) were too good to pass up. And despite the reputation for too loud sound at Pianos, the soundman had them mixed so well (especially the vocals) that it sounded like they were playing at Mercury Lounge. Despite the sparse crowd, they were extremely excited to be playing their first-ever show in NYC, and they played liked it. Of the ten songs they played, four were from Hotel Radio -- the rest were (I believe) all new. But all the new songs were incredible and sounded as if they'd been playing them for years (even though they said they were just "trying them out") -- if the show was any indication, their next release should be every bit as good as their last one. After the show, Alice was outside in the freezing cold w/no jacket, having a quick smoke. Since they are recording in Hoboken this week, and playing Brooklyn on Fri, she better protect that voice."

Sin-e is Closing on April 2nd

It is sad to see another downtown club closing. Sin-e is near and dear to my heart as I did some promo for them when they first re-opened on Attorney Street. I have been reading some of the commentary since The Continental and CBGB closed and it seems a popular response is "it is just a club - new clubs are opening". I don't know...for me it isn't the same.

These weren't just clubs but these were places where memories were made. I clearly remember seeing Joey and Dee Dee at The Continental, more acts than I can remember at CBGB, hanging out at Sin-e and talking with Steve Wynn until an ungodly hour of the morning.

So -- to all the people I have met at Sin-e over the years, I wish you the best.

Sin-e is going out with some strong acts. The third to last night features the following bands:

9pm Miss Guy
10pm Pretty Boys
11pm Theo & the Skyscrapers -- former front woman of the Lunachicks
12pm Glass Hand

21+, $10 cover

advanced tickets on ticketweb

The View & The Young Knives Reschedule Tour - Both are Playing Luna Lounge

Both The View and The Young Knives have seem to have resolved their visa issues and have rescheduled their respective US tours.

The View are playing the Bowery Ballroom on May 1st and the Luna Lounge in Brooklyn on May 2nd.

The Young Knives are playing Luna Lounge on March 20th, Mercury Lounge on March 22nd (sold out)and Annex on March 23rd.

I would expect both shows to sell out so get your tickets soon!

Haste The Day Starts Tour/New CD Released March 20th

Haste The Day Tour PosterHaste The Day is preparing for the release of their third album, Pressure The Hinges on March 20th on Solid State Records. They have released on their Myspace page their new single “Stitches” and are headed to LA to film the video for that song.

“Stitches” was written by Haste The Day members Brennan Chaulk and Stephen Keech and Keech states what the inspiration behind it is, “Everyone knows at least one person in their life who destroyed their life with drugs or alcohol. The song is about the need of intervention from a loved one (friend of family member), and the use of five words that can change that person’s life: you're worth more than this. Sometimes we, as the loved one, have a hard time saying those words creating stitches in our mouth.”

The video was shot in California and shows a powerful band performance with undercutting images between two different stories. Both stories will have the same theme; however each story will have an individual feel, characters and problems.

After selling over 100,000 copies of their combined albums, Haste The Day is prepared to have a blow out third release that includes not only the single disc album, but also a deluxe version with bonus tracks and DVD including 2 live shows, past music videos and more. You can also pre-order the new album at Interpunk and receive a limited edition 7" split featuring two songs from aste the Day and From Ashes to Autumn.

The band hits the road on tour co-headlining with From Autumn To Ashes starting March 6th in Buffalo, NY. The only show in the New York area is at Irving Plaza on April 20th.

Haste The Day is Stephen Keech (Vocals), Michael Murphy (Bass, Backing Vox), Devin Chaulk (Drums), Jason Barnes (Lead Guitar) and Brennan Chaulk (Rhythm Guitar, Backing Vox).

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Anata - The Conductor's Departure CD Review

Anata - The Conductor's DepartureThis CD made a number of "Best of 2006" lists and, while I never made a "Best of" list, I have to agree. This is one of those rare CDs where the vocals serve as an instrument and all the instruments serve a clear purpose. Clear production highlights the talent of the band and none of the instruments are mixed on top of others. Every note seems to have been chosen with precision and Fredrik Shalin's vocals go beyond the cookie-monster growl that is used too often in this genre. The technical precision of the band isn't to say this is "math metal" -- the tempos are a bit slower than some of Anata's contemporaries and there is no "speed for the sake of speed". The slower tempos add to the pounding brutality of the songs and yet every song is still melodic. My favorite tracks are Downward Spiral into Madness and The Great Juggler. I also enjoyed the disc's instrumental track Children's Laughter. There is a poll on Anata's website where visitors get to select their favorite songs and current fan favorites are Downward Spiral and Better Grieved than Fooled.

The lyrics are fascinating and complex. I was impressed with the response that Fredrik gave when asked about the lyrics to The Great Juggler (from Anata's web forum):

I'm glad to hear that there is at least one person who read my lyrics, thanks! The great juggler is like most of my lyrics about myself. Firstly, I am the great juggler. It's about how I was (dis)regarded by other people in my younger years, aspiring to achieve something musically. "Joined the circus at seventeen" stands for forming Anata. Later on it deals with getting so consumed by my music that I almost alienated from the rest of what is life. You prefer staying inside and doing your thing, while neglecting a lot of other things. And the thing is, that no matter how good you get at doing your thing, in this case playing alternative music, the circus tent will always be very small. You will forever be regarded an outsider and a freak. For most of the time I love it, but sometimes it hurts quite a bit.

Btw I initially wrote this as a short story "(taken from) A letter from The Great Juggler". It's about a person that travels with a circus, now writing a letter to his old friend. Later I wrote some music to fit parts of the story, and that is what you hear in The great juggler.

Feel free to ask about other lyrics! I'll try to check in once in a while.


The band also posted to their web forum that they are recording a new CD this summer. Let's hope for a US tour to follow.

Nate Young's Brother Injured in Fire (Wolf Eyes)

Nate Young posted the following to the Hanson Records mailing list earlier this week. Please donate if you can...

Hey everyone,

On the morning of Feb 24th my brother Peter Young was in a fire. He was injured with 2nd and 3rd degree burns on 30-44% of his body. Neighbors reported seeing him coming out of his apartment unharmed only to see him run back in to save his dog Little John. The smoke and heat over took Pete as soon as he reentered the apartment. Pete was found unconscious and burning by Brighton Police and Fire Department who rushed him over to the U of M hospital. His apartment was completely destroyed and Little John did not make it. Pete has no medical insurance or insurance on his apartment which he owns. He is undergoing surgery for skin grafts and has not been conscious yet. He will be in the hospital for at least 2-3 months.

I am asking for donations to help my family with some of the medical bills and the rebuilding of his apartment. I have set up a paypal account in Pete's name. There are over 1000 members on this board, if everyone donates at least $1 that will be a big help.

Please paypal donations to Peter.B.Young (at) gmail (dot) com
Please try to pay the paypal fee if paying from a credit or debit card.

Pete first introduced me to punk, psychedelic rock and noise - the music that inspired me the most as a kid. He also painted the cover for the first Wolf Eyes album released on Bulb. Without him Wolf Eyes may not have ever existed. I hope you'll help me give him something back.

With much thanks,
Nate Young

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Yoko Ono on World Cafe, Feb. 16, 2007 Legal Music Download

Yoko Ono's interview on NPR's World Cafe has to be one of the more interesting things that I have run across on iTunes this past week. I am somewhat amazed that Yoko is in her early 70s as she remains current in today's music scene. The interview focuses on Ono's new release Yes, I'm a Witch on which 16 artists reinterpret and remix songs from Ono's back catalog. These artists included Flaming Lips, Cat Power, Peaches and many more. I haven't heard the CD but was impressed with the clips that were played during the interview (the Cat Power clip was especially compelling).

The full interview is available (for free) on iTunes and can also be streamed over the web from National Public Radio's website.

Yoko Ono's new CD was just released by Astralwerks and there are links to the Flaming Lips (covering Cambridge 1969) and Cat Power (covering Revelations) tracks from Ono's page on the Astralwerks site.

The Residents - Legal Music Downloads

The ResidentsI was excited when I found The Residents podcasts (bogcasts) as they are one of my favorite bands and I downloaded the first two to my iPod. After listening, unfortunately, these podcasts are pretty boring. The first two podcasts are basically one person answering some pretty boring questions (when will The Residents play my town, will there be a live release from "fill in the blank" tour, have any of The Residents left the band, etc.) and 1-2 minutes of unreleased live material. For fans, the live material is too brief to warrant downloading these podcasts. I am not certain these podcasts are a good starting point for those unfamilar with the band as the questions start from a "fan boy" perspective.

Recommendation: For fans and neophytes, The Residents main site is a better place to get up to speed with the happenings of the band.

Travis: New CD Scheduled for May Release (Epic Records)

Travis: New CD Scheduled for May Release (Epic Records)
Travis returns to the US to play Coachella on April 28th and Epic just announced that Travis' new CD, The Boy With No Name, will be released in May. This is the band's first new release in almost four years.

Travis, one of the UK’s most prominent rock bands are gearing up to release The Boy With No Name, their fifth studio album on May 8th. The highly anticipated new album – which was produced by the band and long time collaborator Nigel Godrich (Radiohead, Paul McCartney) – shimmers with infectious melodies and timeless choruses wrapped around bittersweet songs of deep love and regret. The Boy With No Name bookmarks the band’s first new material since 12 Memories.

“This album has all the facets of us, and some new ones,” lead singer Fran Healy explains. “It’s rocky and then it’s pop but also sweet too. After a time of feeling stuck, we now feel we can do anything. We’ve come through the dark places and it feels like we’ve found our muse once more.”

Album highlights include the lead single, “Closer” which Fran says “bred the rest of the album”, “Big Chair,” with it’s restless bass line – debuted by Chris Martin while hosting the Zane Lowe Radio One show – whilst “Selfish Jean,” delivers Motown bass and expansive ‘Phil Spector’ production. An Ode to lead singer Fran Healy’s then unborn son Clay, “My Eyes,” is classic Travis; a joyful chorus journeyed to via an equally catchy prelude of ‘Welcome in, welcome in…” “Battleships,” meanwhile boasts a painfully honest lyric about relationship strife –a situation when two people in love just aren’t seeing eye to eye.

Signed in 1996 Travis have amassed four albums (including two number one albums), two Brit Awards, an Ivor Novello, several sold out tours across the US, and have been lauded by critics worldwide and embraced by their fans as the everyman’s band.

To kick things off, Travis will perform three UK club shows in March where the band will unveil tracks from the upcoming album, The Boy With No Name.

Ror-Shak -- Deep CD Review

Ror-Shak has their roots in electronica but the songs on this CD push beyond the limitations of the genre. The "electronica" label doesn't do this band justice as this disc goes beyond dance tracks and extended remixes. All the songs are distinctive and a number of the tracks merit repeated plays. While I am sure that the disc will do well in the dance scene, this is also the sort of music that would be well received at a late night show at the Mercury Lounge. As a point of comparison, Ror-Shak's music isn't that far removed from what Kid Congo Powers has been doing over the last few years with Annie Anxiety.

What really makes this CD for me are the vocalists and use of live musicians. I am not a fan of the bands use only pre-programmed backing tracks as they generally lack the warmth that Ror-Shak is able to achieve on this disc. The vocals are a real standout and here is a list of the vocalists on each track:

1. Lisa's Song - Feat. Lisa Shaw
2. Fate or Faith - Feat. Julee Cruise
3. A Forest - Feat. Chantel Claret
4. Golden Cage - Feat. Julee Cruise
5. Rescue Me - Feat. Wendy Starland
6. Interlude # 1
7. Be There
8. Love & Pride - Feat. Wendy Starland
9. Heist
10. I Don't Want (A Remake) - Feat. Julee Cruise
11. Window Pain - Feat. Julee Cruise
12. Trust (Alternative Mix) - Feat. Mark Holmes

The three tracks that stand out for me are Lisa's Song, Fate or Faith and a cover of The Cure's A Forest. The last two tracks are streaming on the band's MySpace page.

It looks like Ror-Shak is more than just a studio band as there is a booking contact listed in the CD booklet. It will be very interesting to hear how Ror-Shak translates this disc to the live stage.

Moby has been quoted as saying Ror-Shak is "great electronic music" and I completely agree.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Love as Laughter @ Club NME (Studio B), Brooklyn, March 1, 2007

Love as Laughter headlined the Club NME show last night and drew a strong crowd. The band sounded good despite some technical glitches and held the crowd's attention through out their set. posted a review of the show earlier today.

Love as Laughter @ Club NME
Love as Laughter @ Club NME
Love as Laughter @ Club NME

Unearthly Trance Playing Water Street Lounge Tonight (March 2nd)

Wow, I got the date of this show wrong. I was thinking it was tomorrow night.

If anyone is looking for something to do tonight, this should be a great show. Unearthly Trance just released their debut on Relapse and Constant played some strong shows when they came through the area in '05 (and I don't think they have been back since).

Here is the complete lineup for tonight's show:

8:30 - So Is The Tongue
The epic orchestrations of this progressive three piece from central New Jersey range from swirling psychedelia to fits of heavy doom laden cacophony.

9:30 – Chubby Behemoth
This New York progressive Jazz ensemble will take your preconceived notions of Jazz and grind them to a pulp.

10:30 – Constants
One of Boston’s best-kept secrets brings their forward thinking “space rock” to Brooklyn, to drown you in the most beautiful sea of sound.

11:30 – Unearthly Trance
The Trident, Unearthly Trance’s recent debut for Relapse Records is a tightly wrapped package of blackened doom and thrash. New York is still in the forefront of churning out the most exciting and fresh sounds from the underground.

The Stalkers @ Club NME (Studio B), Brooklyn, March 1, 2007

Club NME made its debut in Brooklyn last night with a show at Studio B that featured The Stalkers and Love as Laughter. The Stalkers played a great set that touched on influences from The Dolls to 1977-era British punk. The band is releasing their debut CD next month on Dollar Record Records.

The Stalkers Live @ Studio BThe Stalkers are playing a number of shows in the area in the next few weeks. Here are the upcoming shows:

  • March 9th @ Niagra (anyone catch The Stalkers opening for Jesse Malin at Bowery Ballroom)
  • March 15th @ Don Hill's
  • March 28th @ Lit (w/ Star Spangles)
The Stalkers - Club NME

Young Knives Show @ Luna Lounge Rescheduled

I was expecting this...

Luna Lounge has postponed Saturday night's Young Knives show until March 20th. The acts that were scheduled to open on Saturday, Foreign Islands and Soft, will be playing for free that night. I don't think I have ever seen a show canceled because neither of the co-headliners (The View were originally on the bill) couldn't get into the country.

For anyone looking for a great show on Saturday, check out Unearthly Trance (Relapse Records) at Water Street Lounge. Tickets are only $10.