nûk – Gray

Hey there fellow music fans! We present to you nûk, an alrernative rock band from Seville, Spain. Their new song "Gray" is soothing to the ears with amazing vocals, the kind where you just want to sit back and close your eyes. The video for this song is really interesting because the story is told in reverse, showing the events leading up to the beginning of the video. The emotions in the vocals are the icing on the cake because it ties the story together, and you can feel what the character was feeling as the times were changing. For more info, check out the band's website!

nûk – Gray Video

Papa Roach – Crooked Teeth

You’ve gotta hand it to Papa Roach: their career could have peaked with “Last Resort” and taken them on the nostalgia tour route with also-rans like Adema and Motograter, but instead they’ve been doing a damned good job staying relevant into 2017 without fully crossing over to any one trend. They’ve always been a hard rock band at their core, but the Vacaville veterans gradually gathered other elements to their sound over the years – whether it be the nu-metal of Infest and lovehatetragedy, to their catchier arena rock of The Paramour Sessions, to flirting with electronica on The Connection. So it is that with new platter Crooked Teeth, Papa Roach continues their experimentation with poppier elements heard on more recent fare, while at the same time doing a nice throwback to the muscular angst that saw them playing Ozzfest stages early in their career.

And for the most part, it works. The harder songs of the bunch (like “Break the Fall” and “American Dreams”) are smartly arranged, knowing when to crank up the intensity and when to dial it back. The title track in particular is a wild-eyed stomper that nails the punk energy the band had on Infest and shows why Jacoby Shaddix has one of the most powerful voices in hard rock. Indeed, his voice is what carries most of Crooked Teeth’s songs – including lead single “Help” which could have sounded “eh” in another band’s hands – over the goal line into “catchy and memorable” territory.

There are some missteps, though. The straight-up pop song “Born For Greatness”, co-written with Jason Evigan (Jason Derulo, Maroon 5), puts much of the band in the background in favor of handclaps and stuttering hi-hats, offering little else in replay value. And “Sunrise Trailer Park”, with its acoustic verses and drunk driving storyline, tries too hard to be a moody hip hop tune and instead comes off wayyy dated. Everlast did this sort of thing better, and even a guest verse by Machine Gun Kelly doesn’t save it.

That being said, the second biggest standout on this album besides the title track is, surprisingly, another pop song. The sparse ballad “Periscope” sees Shaddix scale back his pipes to a restrained croon for a duet with Skylar Gray that is more effective than one would think. I don’t imagine it being played live anytime soon, but if Papa Roach were ever looking for a potential crossover radio hit, this could do it for them.

If you didn’t like Papa Roach before, or if you just wrote them off after “Last Resort” got played to death back in the day, Crooked Teeth won’t do much to change your mind. For current fans, or those willing to give it a chance, the album offers plenty of hard rocking moments while throwing in a couple of curveballs. Maybe the cramped Hollywood studio where they recorded this album helped the looser, “let’s do what we want” vibe, but overall the guys do sound like they’re having the most fun they’ve had in years. For the most part, it’s a fun ride for the listener, too.

Geen categorie

Metal Mondays, March 27th, 2017

After a few more weeks off, Metal Mondays is back again! We really need more solid metal coming in, so please shoot us an email if you have any recommendations. That being said, we finally had enough good submissions to make a solid post!

Ghost Season is an alt. metal band from Greece that just chugs on and on. Powerful riffs and a driving beat push “Fade Away” over the edge into Metal Mondays worthiness.

For a trip to the 90s, why not check out Mr. Tom? With blazing solos and pounding drums, as well as powerful yet rough vocals, “Circles” is a song to jam to.

Until next time, folks!

Triple Tuesdays, March 21st, 2017

Welcome to another installment of Triple Tuesdays! This week we share with you Connecticut based pop-punk group Light It Up, German horror-rockers Sloppy Joe's, and Norwegian ska-punk group, Norsk Råkk.

What do you get when you combine a local pop punk band like Premier with a singer who has a powerful voice akin to Hayley Williams? The answer is Light It Up. The band from CT have recently released a video for their song "Bury Them", which although it's a very strong song could use a few tweaks to get out of that formulaic "local pop punk band" sound.

From Hamburg, the horror rock band Sloppy Joe's drop an eerie sounding single, "Right Decision". Reminding me of Stellar Corpses and other psychobilly/rock fusion projects, this band quickly gained a place in my heart. The song is from their album, Eight Reasons to Rock.

Last, but certainly not least, Norwegian ska/punk band Norsk Råkk. I have no clue whatsoever what they are saying, but I can skank to it and that's all I care about. Definitely one of the best songs to come across my desk recently!

That's all for now, folks. Until the next Triple Tuesdays!

Live – Yellowcard

After almost 20 years creating music together, Yellowcard announced last year that they’re calling it quits. Since then, the band have released a final, self-titled album and toured the world – a last hurrah of sorts. I got the chance to see their second “final” show in San Diego, which was added after a few dates on their fall tour had to be rescheduled.

Even before the band took the stage, fans were singing along to classic songs on the house mix such as “All the Small Things”, “Cute Without the ‘E’”, and “Sugar, We’re Goin’ Down”. The audience was united in memories of the early to mid 2000s, and clearly was ready to experience what would be for most, if not all, in attendance, the last Yellowcard show they would ever see.

The band’s mammoth 24 song, two hour long set, started with a recorded introduction welcoming guests and requesting that they refrain from filming the show. The recording pointed out that if people wanted to watch the show on a screen, they might as well just pull up on of the thousands of videos that are already online. Thankfully, most people obliged and decided to enjoy the moment in real time, though it didn’t stop one person near me from filming nearly the entire show.

Playing through hits such as “Lights and Sounds”, “Way Away”, and “Southern Air”, the band showcased a variety of albums, playing cuts off of seven different albums out of the eight featuring vocalist Ryan Key. The energy of the fans was highlighted on songs from Ocean Avenue, but was still incredibly powerful during songs from the bands’ lesser-known albums.

Moving on to the technical aspects, the lighting director ran the best club-level lighting show I’ve seen since 2013. The LD created expertly arranged cues that not only added to the music, but also complimented it and blended with the band’s energy.

Speaking of the energy the band exuded, each member spent most of the show jumping around the stage, but I don’t think anything needs to be mentioned more than violinist Sean Mackin’s backflip off of the drum riser at the start of “Cut Me, Mick”. It was also great to see Jimmy from Like Torches returning as Yellowcard’s fill in drummer for this final leg of shows, as he always seems to be having a blast on stage.

Additional highlights included the incredible fan sing-along to the Ocean Avenue ballad, “Empty Apartment”, and of course the closing song for the set, “Ocean Avenue”.

Ironically, and probably intended as such, “The Final Countdown” was played as the crowd exited the building after Yellowcard’s final song.

If you have a chance to see the band during their last handful of shows, I can highly recommend it. Otherwise, you’ll have to make do with videos and their final record, Yellowcard.

Press photo by Joe Brady.

Super Saturdays, March 18th, 2017

Welcome to Super Saturdays! Today we have Doesn't Rhyme With King,  X-Vivo, and Audio Jane!

Doesn't Rhyme With King are two siblings from Germany that have released their first single called "Can't Tell the Difference".  This song starts off really heavy and then is combined with a beautiful crooning voice that strengthens as you get further into the song. I really enjoy how dark this song sounds as well as how artistic the video is! You can check out more about them here!

X-Vivo are an industrial band from Berlin, Germany. "The Unseen" begins with Alina's beautiful soft voice like Cristina Scabbia from Lacuna Coil and Tarja Turunen from Nighwish. The song builds slowly throughout the song while Alina sings until it finally releases a heavier sound and then goes back into being calm again. 

Audio Jane are an indie rock band from Hartford, Connecticut. Their song "Atmosphere" has a definite 90's feel to it, if you like Mazzy Star then you'll definitely enjoy Audio Jane! For more information you can look here!

Until next time, see you on another Super Saturdays!

Live: Night Riots

This past Monday I had the pleasure of seeing Night Riots opening for Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness at House of Blues San Diego. Though I've known of the band since their run on Warped Tour 2015, this was the first time I actually got to see them play.

Night Riots made a dramatic entrance to the stage, appearing one by one from the wings. Things got off to a rough start when lead singer Travis Hawley began singing a bar early, but he quickly realized his mistake and like a true professional went on to perform a solid set with the rest of the band. Key highlights were when the entire band played drums during "Oh My Heart" and "Contagious", including the use of glowing multicolored drumsticks. The band did their best to get the crowd ready for the entertainment ahead, and they although the lead vocals distorted on occasion, the rest of the mix was solid and I think the band likely gained more than a few fans on Monday night. Altogether, the band did their job well and even threw in a fun Kendrick Lamar cover halfway through the set.

Night Riots setlist:

1. All for You
2. Nothing Personal
3. Oh My Heart
4. Alright (Kendrick Lamar cover)
5. Work It
6. Breaking Free
7. Contagious

Night Riots will continue their tour with Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness and Atlas Genius through May 19th, including a return to House of Blues San Diego on May 5th.

The band's album Love Gloom is available now on Sumerian Records. You can visit Night Riots website for more information, and follow them on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Rebel Machine – Nothing Happens Overnight

The last ten years have seen a good share of bands from all over the world doing their damnedest to bring back the type of hard rawk that evokes the golden age of the Sunset Strip. The U.S. has a pretty good foothold with Steel Panther, even if their comedy shtick tends to get in the way of them being taken too seriously. Sweden has been the closest to capture that street-worthy L.A. Guns vibe, with Crashdiet and Hardcore Superstar cranking out both the tunes and attitude to match. But that could all change, because coming around the bend is Rebel Machine, a band of bearded Brazilians who have dropped an impressive DIY debut in Nothing Happens Overnight.

Firing on all cylinders right out of the gate, “Don’t Tell Me I’m Wrong” kicks things off with a righteous “kick the door down and let’s rock” feel, even throwing in a tambourine during the chorus for extra flair. Elsewhere, “Down the Road” keeps the tempo going with driving riffs and lyrics about packing a suitcase and chasing adventure; while the lush harmonies in “Waiting for You” would make the late Jani Lane proud. Later on, the band hits drop D tuning for “Run Away”, a mean shuffle that would make Pepper Keenan and Joe Perry nod their heads in approval. Marcelo Pereira’s voice is the perfect fit for these proceedings, a streetwise grit that can still belt high notes whenever it’s needed, and Murilo Bittencourt’s solos, particularly in “Down the Road”, are shredtastic and tasty. Seriously, Slash would be proud.

The guys might want to kill me for not comparing them to the bands they’ve cited as influences in the past, but honestly I don’t hear the Hellacopters or The Hives anywhere on this album. Whereas those bands are more of a garage-rock thing, Rebel Machine has that extra tightness and polish that could see them open for The Darkness or even Tesla, and hold their own with no problems.

Nothing Happens Overnight is tightly played, hella rockin’ stuff from a band who clearly took notes on what the big boys were doing, and came out of the gate swinging for the fences. If Rebel Machine manages to get signed and tour outside of their borders (I’m looking at you, Century Media), they’ll turn every club into a party. Raise your glasses and shake your asses, folks; the Brazilians are coming!


Sum 41 @ Ancienne Belgique, Brussels

Nathan Dobbelaere photographed Sum 41 at their show in Ancienne Belgique, Brussels

Triple Tuesdays, March 7th, 2017

Hey folks it's Triple Tuesdays! Today we have The Vigilantes, Patrick Joseph, and GRMLN!

The Vigilantes are an energetic indie rock band from Boston, UK. Their song "What A Shame" is very vibrant and makes you feel like you just want to shake away all your problems and live in the moment. Full of melodies, a cool guitar intro, and positive vibes, you won't be disapointed. What I love most about this song is the way the vocals remind me of Frank Carter. For more information about this band, check out their site!

Up next is Patrick Joseph! He's from Pittsburgh but currently lives in Los Angeles, CA. Here we have "Arsonist Blues", an indie rock song that makes you want to swoon to the sound of Patrick's voice. The song is very catchy and the emotions within the lyrics are deep. Enjoy! 

Last but not least GRMLN! Based in the Bay Area, their song "27 Kids" is upbeat and the rhythm section holds the song together really well. Fun to listen to, you'll want to listen to it again!

Thanks for checking out another Triple Tuesdays, see you next time!