Back in the day, when this place was crawling with forums and chats about random acts of music, we used to poll ourselves to see which release by an artist not only set them atop of the industry but stapled them in as musical gods.
This week is the one and only, Van Halen. Their storied legacy begins way back in 1978 with their eponymous debut, Van Halen. They immediately and simultaneously rewrote the rules of rock guitar and hard rock in general. Guitarist Eddie Van Halen redefined what electric guitar could do, developing a blindingly fast technique with a variety of self-taught two-handed tapping, hammer-ons, pull-offs, and effects that mimicked the sounds of machines and animals. It was wildly inventive and over the top, equaled only by vocalist David Lee Roth, who brought the role of a metal singer to near-performance art standards. Roth wasn’t blessed with great technique, unlike Eddie, but he had a flair for showmanship that was derived as much from lounge performers as Robert Plant. Together, they made Van Halen into the most popular American rock & roll band of the late ’70s and early ’80s, and in the process set the template for hard rock and heavy metal for the ’80s.
Throughout the ’80s, it was impossible… Read more
We have been fans of this band since last summer. White Arrows may never divulge the source of their strange magic, but it’s hard not to picture a mystic dance floor hidden in the midst of tropical rainforest. The Los Angeles band stands at these balmy crossroads like a vision from an alternate reality: classic without leaning on nostalgia, visionary but not unfamiliar. What should be a collision of sounds and styles-ritualistic rhythm and four-four thump, synth sequences and strummed guitars, garage-y grind and airy atmosphere-is, in this quintet’s capable hands, a fluidly seething whole. Call it Psychotropical pop, something both busy and breezy. Call it Paul Simon in space (others have). Call it what you will. This is White Arrows.
The White Arrows story begins with a blind boy. Read more
Detroit MC Danny Brown is turning up everywhere in 2012. From the new XXL 2012 Freshman List to Bonnaroo to opening tour support for Chilidish Gambino, to landing on the cover of the Fader, whether he is hanging with his friend A$AP Rocky or talking trash about Mac Miller, he seems to be popping up everywhere. We will be catching his live show at 35 Denton Fest, and hopefully at SXSW also. We are also trying to set up an interview when we see him open for Childish Gambino.
This video is for the song “Greatest Rapper Ever”, off his Hybrid album/mixtape. Expect to hear a lot more about this artist in 2012.
Written by special guest correspondent Katie Covens
No one could have predicted a leap day like this one. Insomniac Events made this February 29th very exciting with the release of the official Nocturnal Wonderland 2012 lineup. After a long wait, a list of thirty-two artists was announced on the event website, nocturnalwonderland.com. The upcoming Texas festival will be held on April 27th and 28th. Please note, this is not the final lineup. There will be more artists added to the list, at a later date.
The three headliners listed, on phase one, are Tiesto, Royksopp, and Sound Tribe Sector Nine. Insomniac has a good understanding of the electronic music scene. Based on the artists named thus far, one can see the great consideration Insomniac had in each of their choices. The event will highlight a range of EDM.
Update: Phase 2 line up has been revealed, and includes: Chromeo, Auto Body, J Rabbit, Lotus, and more.
These electronic genres include dubstep, drum and bass, jungle, house, dance, progressive trance, trip-hop, synthpop, nu-disco, jam-funk, electroclash, and more. There are many artists that fall somewhere in-between. The balance of genres is most heavily weighted by grimey post-industrial sound, with artists such as Datsik, 12th Planet, Nero, and Pendulum. Insomniac didn’t forget dance music though! If you enjoy moving and grooving, you’ll surely have a great time watching artists such as Calvin Harris, MIMOSA, Hardwell, Tiesto, Steve Aoki, The M Machine, and Röyksopp. Lastly, for those diehard jamband followers, Insominac graciously topped their headliners with Sound Tribe Sector Nine. Nocturnal Wonderland is off to an amazing start. Get your tickets early! This electronic festival is going to be incredible, and we are planning on covering it for you. Catch the official trailer below:
Tags: Library Voices
Interview by tosnob
We were recently able to catch up with one of our favorite new bands from Regina, Library Voices. We had the opportunity to talk to Mike Dawson, lyricist, synth player, and all around jack-of-all-trades.
First off thanks for taking the time to do this with us. You’re playing CMW on March 13th, what do festivals like this mean to a band as they start out?
They can be incredibly beneficial. They bring so many people together in such a concentrated space. Events like this we have done over the past year have resulted in some really great opportunities and friendships. In the past they have led to collaborations with Woodpigeon and all night drinking binges with Okkervil River. It creates a giant network – it’s like facebook but without the internet and constant status updates.
When you do a Festival event like CMW do you get a chance to check out any of the other bands?
It all comes down to routing and scheduling really. It always seems that everyone is running all over the city before and after set times trying to catch their favorite acts. We have been pretty blessed with the last couple festivals we’ve played, at WCMA we shared a bill with Chad VanGaalen and with Blitzen Trapper at Sled Island, so needless to say we stayed locked to our seats. This time around Young Rival plays right after us at the El Mocambo, so again we’ll get to check out a really great band without having to go anywhere. Other bands we hope to check out will be Human Highway, Jon Rae, Women, and Naughty By Nature. Read more
Tags: Dead Sara
Los Angeles rock band Dead Sara have announced the release of their highly anticipated self-titled debut album on April 10th on Pocket Kid Records/ Fontana/Universal. Having spent much of last year in the studio, Dead Sara will hit the road in support of their debut full-length album beginning with a week of shows in Austin, TX at the SXSW Music Festival in March, followed by a spring tour supporting Chevelle, and radio festival dates including BuzzFest in Woodlands, TX, EdgeFest in Dallas, LAZERfest in Des Moines, and the Big Gig in Hartford, CT. Additional dates will be announced. The band will cap it all off with a 40+ date coast-to-coast run on the Vans Warped Tour this summer, beginning June 16th, and will perform at the annual Warped Tour kick-off party/record release party on Thursday, March 29 at Club Nokia in Los Angeles.
The bands’ explosive first single “Weatherman” has sunk its teeth into Modern Rock and Read more
If you haven’t heard the latest news yet, the dynamic duo of Tenacious D are back! Yes, Jack Black and Kyle Gass are teaming up with the one and only Dave Grohl for the release of their new record. Rize of the Fenix is due out May 15th. Below is a sample clip:
Troy, Ohio melodic metal band MISS MAY I are set to kick off their upcoming tour with Whitechapel, After The Bruial, The Plot In You, and Structures on March 10th in Memphis, TN. The tour will travel through the United States until March 30th, taking a month long break while MISS MAY I heads to Europe to tour with Parkway Drive, The Ghost Inside, and Confession, and kicks back up again on May 3rd in Louisville, KY. The tour closes with two east coast shows, including the 2012 Bamboozle Festival in Asbury Park, NJ.
The band is preparing to announce new information about their upcoming album very soon. Stay tuned for new details coming within the next few weeks.
MISS MAY I was discovered by Rise Records through the direction of former manager Chris Rubey of The Devil Wears Prada in 2008. The band’s first album, Apologies Are for the Weak, reached #29 on the Billboard Heatseekers chart. Their 2010 sophomore release, Monument, charted on the Billboard Top 200 and hit #10 on the U.S. Hard Rock chart. Churning out over 450 performances since 2009, the band is regarded as one of the hardest working young bands in the metal genre.
Update: MISS MAY I are pleased to announce the name and release date of their brand new full-length album. The new album, entitled At Heart, is being released with Rise Records and will hit stores on May 29th, 2012. At Heart was produced by famed record producer Machine (Lamb of God, Every Time I Die, Suicide Silence) this past winter at Machine Shop in Belleville, New Jersey.
Fans can view a special video announcement featuring MISS MAY I vocalist Levi Benton at the band’s official YouTube page now. “We are so stoked for everyone to hear this new record. It is the best thing we’ve ever recorded from beginning to end,” states Levi. “We decided to name the album At Heart because this is the first thing we have ever created from the heart. Everything is exactly what we have always wanted to say and we didn’t hold back. No gimmicks or computers. Just five guys thrashing their hearts out.”
“The individual member’s performances on this record are fantastic! This is why I say, MISS MAY I has arrived as a BAND. A real fucking band,” adds At Heart producer Machine. “We have created an unstoppable, pure, metal, freight train of a record. My instincts tell me that when people hear it, it will be infectiously unstoppable. There’s more feel and power musically, lyrically, than I have heard from the band before. It is a pleasure for me to work with such a young band who knows who they are and are not afraid to focus on the big picture.”
Tour dates listed below, keep reading more
Update: New album art listed, and they will now be on The Van’s Warped Tour Main Stage!
Just like in high school and college sports, the music industry has become enamored and obsessed with discovering the next profound promise of potential. Originally started in 1987, SXSW has matured and blossomed into the premier talent showcase for musicians around the world. As we journey towards this incredible opportunity, we decided to take an in depth look at some of the thousands of up and coming artists who will be performing.
Anyone that has ever been or considered going to experience a massive event like this knows what it feels like when looking over the line up. It can almost feel like reading a foreign language, seeing bands listed that you have never heard of. That’s where we come in to help. This can be used as a planning guide for deciding who to catch for those of you lucky enough to be able to attend. For everyone else, this is intended to be used as a primer for armchair quarterback music aficionados.
This will all be towards us journeying together towards March, as we prepare to pick our Top 50 Indie Picks of SXSW 2012..