Sum 41’s Screaming Bloody Murder

Sum 41
Screaming Bloody Murder

Sum 41 Screaming Bloody Murder

I must say when I heard Sum 41 had a new album coming out I was shocked. To be honest I didn’t even think they were still around anymore. Growing up during the time of pop-punk being in its prime I’m always delighted to reminisce of Sum 41’s All Kill No Filler but any album after that I lost interest. I didn’t get it when they went all metal on us. And Screaming Bloody Murder is much different than anything I have ever heard from the trio.

Screaming Bloody Murder’s first track “Reason To Believe” is a mixture of metal & pop-punk. I know that may sound sort of odd but it actually really works well together. “Screaming Bloody Murder” has beautiful piano & vocals in the begining before the rocking out begins. This one is definitely my favorite! I can picture myself singing along to this at their show. “All Comes To An End” Deryck Whibley resembles the voice of Gerard Way from My Chemical Romance, it’s kinda strange but works for me! “Time For You To Go” has a very poppy and has pumped drumbeats. “Jessica Kills” reminds me of the old school Sum 41 with the fast guitar riffs and screaming vocals. [Read more…]

4onthefloor Release Debut LP 4×4, Out On 4.4.2011

Self released

4 on the floor 4X4

Finally – from Minnesota a quartet of young lions who have released sixteen (well one is 35 seconds long) large slabs of blues that don’t beg for attention – they command your ear and your ear is happy.

The idea that 4onthefloor is a novelty (they employ four bass drums which keep the thunder booming throughout) is immediately discarded when they break into such powerful multi-layered cuts such as “Lionhearted.” [Read more…]



Stream The Album In Full On AOL Music & Tunelab Music

New York, NY- Jive recording artist Atom Smash is releasing their debut album Love Is In The Missile, available in stores now!  The album’s first single “Do Her Wrong” (click to listen) and newvideo (click to watch) recently premiered on Revolver Magazine online and has been steadily climbing the Billboard Active Rock chart.Listen to Love Is In The Missile on AOL MusicTunelab Music. [Read more…]


(New York, New York) Ray LaMontagne’s 4th studio album God Willin’ & the Creek Don’t Rise debuts at #3 on the Billboard Top 200 and #1 on the Digital album chart selling over 64,000 units.  This marks a personal sales best for Ray and ties his debut chart position at #3 for Gossip in the Grain.  The first single off the album, “Beg, Steal or Borrow” is currently #2 on the AAA chart which is also a career high for Ray.

Entirely self produced (for the first time) God Willin’ & the Creek Don’t Rise was recorded in two weeks at LaMontagne’s home in the woods of western Massachusetts.  The newly restored historic home served as a homemade recording studio for Ray and his fellow musicians.

Critics are raving over the newest addition to LaMontagne’s canon. The New York Daily News’ 5 star review says the album is, “one of the stand out releases of the year” and says LaMontagne “approaches Van Morrison’s greatest leaps into the mystic.”  Associated Press calls it, “one of the year’s best” while the Boston Globe calls it “an absolute gem.” Both the Los Angeles Times and USA Today give the album 3 1/2 stars (out of 4). [Read more…]





[New York, NY – August xx, 2010] With a renewed commitment to her music career and fans, Fantasia is preparing to resume promotional activities for the August 24th release of her third album Back To Me (J Records).

Fantasia will kick off her promo run with previously confirmed television performances on Good Morning America (8/24), Lopez Tonight (8/25), 106 & Park (9/8), Regis & Kelly (9/9) and Wendy Williams Show (9/10). Additional appearances include Steve Harvey’s Ford Hoodie Awards (8/28) and Tom Joyner’s Family Reunion (9/4). [Read more…]

An Evening with The Whigs

The Whigs
The Eagles Ballroom  – Milwaukee, WI


Yesterday, I witnessed the biggest rock star in the world seize the reins of our United States. Today, I saw the greatest rock show of this year (The Whigs, We Are Scientists, and Kings of Leon.) And just before the show, I was able to sit down with the rock stars of tomorrow, Julian Dorio (drums) and Tim Deaux (bass) of The Whigs. While I would put these straight-rockers from Georgia in the category ‘rock star,’ they were not so quick to consent.

After meandering our way through the labyrinth that is The Rave…that is Eagles Ballroom…that is also four other venues, we found a balcony overlooking the parking lot. The place is HUGE. Doors opened as we were walking down the stairs and several girls recognized Julian with his signature backwards trucker hat right away.

Andy: The life of a rock star, it must be rough.
Julian: Yeah. Well you should see the Kings of Leon, they can’t go anywhere without getting mobbed.

Hit the jump for the rest of the interview.

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This Is War – Ben Kweller @ Bottom Lounge

Ben Kweller
Bottom Lounge – Chicago, IL

Ben Kweller Bottom Lounge - Chicago, IL 10/14/2008

Most Tuesday nights for me are spent finishing up home work that I’ve put off since the previous week’s class. Fortunately, Ben Kweller and his Aussie friend, Whitley, hijacked my night turning it into something more than a night to make up for my procrastination. Needless to say, Mr. BK plays a good live show…

Ok, so that’s the understatement of the year: Ben Kweller plays a phenomenal live show. Most artists strive to sound as good live as they do on CD but Ben has something else to worry about; he sounds better live than he does on CD.

BK’s new disc, How Ya Lookin’ Southbound, Come In…, infused the live show with steel guitars and a welcomed southern twang. I know, some of you may be skeptical but I promise there’s a whole new dynamic with the live show. Not only does it work, it works brilliantly.

After skipping the line of fans stretching close to a block, I was able to sit down with Mr. BK himself . We talked about the past (Radish), the present (How Ya Lookin’ Southbound, Come In…,) and the future (Changing Horses.) Look for the interview in a few days.

The show opened with Whitley, an Australian singer-songwriter I had the pleasure of seeing last year. He kept his set short and sweet while maintaining a level of intimacy with the crowd. The time between songs was filled by talking to the crowd and an impromptu song about “the gout” that was plaguing his knee. He didn’t hesitate when a member of the audience called him out on his glasses, asking, “Where’d you get your glasses, Walmart?” Whitley replied “Yeah, I got them in the dickhead aisle, where you obviously shop.” Before ending his set with “Head First Down,” he made sure to apologize to that dickhead, more than once. He even apologized again after he finished, which shows a lot about his character.

Shortly after, Ben took the stage, kicking off the set with a track from the new EP, “Things I Like to Do.” After the second song, “Fight,” I knew we were in for a night of new songs, which was a treat. Highlights of the night were new tunes, “Sawdust Man,” and “Gypsy Rosalita” while older tunes, “Sundress” and “This is War” anchored the show. After walking off stage briefly, BK returned to the stage to play a rockin’ version of “Penny on the Train Track.” The photo of Ben rockin’ out was taken during that song.

Photos of Ben Kweller:

Ben Kweller – How Ya Lookin’ Southbound? Come In… First Look


I have a confession to make; I like country music…

Before you stop reading, let me explain myself. I grew up in Iowa and had to put up with that crap for WAY too long. So, when I got a copy of Ben Kweller’s new EP, How Ya Lookin’ Southbound? Come In…, I was mortified to see iTunes list it as Country. I almost didn’t listen. But, because Ben is one of my favorite singer-songwriters, I figured either Apple fucked up or Ben crafted it that way for a reason.

Each track dissected when you read on…

With that in mind, I gave it a once-through and immediately the twang-y steel guitars, toe-tapping drums, and ragtime pianos stood out. Caught a little off-guard, I kept listening and by the time “Sawdust Man” came around, I was sold. The mixing of Ben’s talented songwriting with a band that belongs down in Dixie adds a whole new genre to my iTunes, alt-country. Imagine the last album, Ben Kweller, + Jack Daniels & steel guitar, and out comes HYLSCI, the best country album this country-hater has ever heard.

For those who don’t know, HYLSCI, is a prequel to a full-length country album that’s due out in February of next year. However great the 5 songs and 2 primitive recordings are, they’re definitely not enough to suppress my newly acquired appetite for Ben the Cowboy. Fortunately, I was able to see Ben live when he stopped at Chicago’s Bottom Lounge on October 14th with support from one of my favorite Aussies, Whitley. He plays a full version of “Gypsy Rosita” that the 25 second preview obviously doesn’t do justice. If you don’t like the new path Ben’s taken, go see him on his current tour and I guarantee it’ll change your mind. Here is a link to my show review with pictures and a full set list:
Ben Kweller @ Bottom Lounge – Chicago

The Tracks:

  1. Fight – An upbeat anthem about fighting until your dying day. I can’t get enough of the lines, “I’m like my grandma; short but I stand tall; playin’ every single card that’s dealt to me; you know some days are aces and some days are faces well some days are 2’s and 3’s.”
  2. Things I Like To Do – A short and sweet love song that runs through a list of the little things in life that make you happy. Nothing too special but it’s a solid track none-the-less.
  3. Sawdust Baby – Recorded on a New York subway, this 39-second track captures the precise moment the chorus for “Sawdust Man” was born, thus Baby. The track is only 39 seconds long but it leaves you feeling like you’re part of the creative process after hearing the final version.
  4. Sawdust Man – From infant to man, this is my favorite track on the EP. After listening, just try to get the lines “I’m on top; of the greyhound station” out of your head. You can’t. Around 2:40, when his voice cracks, by far my favorite part of the song.  Just FYI, I noticed it only in the live version, it’s there for a reason…to make me love it.
  5. The Biggest Flower – Not my favorite, but with time, I may get into it, it’s just not for me.
  6. F Train Blues/Gypsy Rosita – The first half is pretty interesting, I’d like to see where this recording goes on the new album. The last 25 seconds is where it takes off, Gypsy Rosita. I saw a live version of the song and I’ve gotta say, it might have been my favorite of the night.
  7. Somehow (Singlemalt Version) – A slower track heavy on the steel guitar as Ben croons, “Come on, come on, baby, I need you right now.” A nice addition to the album but I’d like to hear the colt 45 version.

One Night of Danger with The Virgins!

The Virgins
Abbey Pub – Chicago, IL

Donald Cumming The Virgins
Donald Cumming (vox)

After hearing The Virgins for the first time over a year and a half ago, I finally got to see them live and in person at the Abbey Pub. Last Monday, the Virgins opened for Black Kids, a band that I’m frankly not a fan of. I’m sure the hipsters won’t be pleased, but I chose to talk with lead singer, Donald Cumming in the catacombs of Abbey Pub while the Black Kids were playing their set…hate me.

Like the name suggests, The Virgins started the night off slow with “Private Affair” and “Radio Christiane” before heading to second base with “Hey Hey Girl” and “Teen Lovers.” After building up some confidence, the guys went for the home run with “One Week of Danger,” “Fernando Pando,” “She’s Expensive” and a personal favorite, “Rich Girls.” The act must have been consensual because no one seemed to decline the pursuit. After the show, some fans left feeling a little tricked because it was obvious these guys have done this before.

PS – The YouTube video of “One Week of Danger ” has a free download of the song in the more info section.

The Virgins @ Abbey Pub, ChicagoThe Virgins @ Abbey Pub, Chicago, il

A little Tobacco but WHY?

Bottom Lounge – Chicago, IL

Why? Tobacco & Yeti?

Tobacco kicked off the night with some calm and collected electro beats. They were just a little too slow and not quite fast enough to groove to. Songs would usually start off with a promising beat but for some reason that would die out leaving me wanting more. The two DJ’s were fairly stationary the entire set but their video mash-ups, everything from Ron Jeremy style 80’s porn clips to some of Arnold Schwarzenegger bustin’ caps in people’s asses, were a great addition and ultimately saved the show for me. The last song brought out a Yeti that walked/crawled around the stage coupled with a video starring the same creature. The whole Yeti thing feels like it had a deeper meaning but I wasn’t interested enough to search for it.

Afterwards, indie-hoppers (that’s indie hip-hop and yes, I just made that up) WHY? took the stage captivating the crowd with their brilliantly abstract lyrics that focus more on imagery than any kind of story. The beautifully crafted lyrics, while absurd to many, did a great job painting zany pictures in my mind. For example, “The Hollows” has an especially colorful lyric, “In Berlin I saw two men fuck;in the dark corner of a basketball court;Just a slight jangle of pocket change pulsing” that puts me right there with him. I know that’s not particularly attractive to some of you but honestly, listen to that track and tell me it doesn’t get stuck in your head.

More after the jump…

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