Monthly Archives: June 2014

1001 Songs Challenge: Day Seventy

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Man, where did the weekend go? I feel like it should still be Saturday! But, it’s time to put my headphones on and get ready to listen to the Day Seventy playlist. I can’t believe it’s Day Seventy already. Only thirty days to go on the challenge! As much as I’m going to miss doing this challenge, I am also excited to start a new one…and to possibly go to bed early.

1. Where Is My Mind? – Pixies

So noisy and strange, and, haunting, that you cannot ignore this incredible track. The Pixie’s are a timeless band, with their influence spanning nearly three decades. The guitar on this track is spectacular and seems to have something to say all on its own, and the melodic vocals are entrancing. In many ways, I can almost hear which bands were influenced by both the Pixies and this song directly.

2. Waiting Room – Fugazi

Bringing punk back onto the main stage and giving outcasts a voice once more, Fugazi’s punk anthem, “Waiting Room” is incredible. I may be biased, because I love group vocals, but this is truly a great track. This would be something I would expect to hear at the Warped Tour, really encouraging interaction between the band and the crowd.

3. Touch Me I’m Sick – Mudhoney

Loud, boisterous, and grunge. The Seattle music scene has graced the world with many amazing bands, but here is one that time should never forget. The further along into this playlist I get, the more I am hearing the phasing in to the early nineties, where grunge dominated. I’m also hearing Mark Arm’s shrieking that is oddly fascinating…

4. Feed Me With Your Kiss – My Bloody Valentine

I like My Bloody Valentine, but this, for me, is a bit much. The music overpowers the vocals, and it just doesn’t sit well with me, even if it is a decent track.

5. Buffalo Stance – Neneh Cherry

This is actually a pretty empowering song. Neneh Cherry celebrates the women who stand alone and survive, and applauds those who maintain who they are, as well as calling out the fake women and the men who treat women badly. This mixture of pop and hip-hop kind of emphasize the slow transition from the 80s to the 90s, where hip-hop stood on its own two feet on the top 40s.

6. Fast Car – Tracy Chapman

Such a classic. It truly is a timeless track. Tracy Champan’s songwriting abilities, as well as her musical talents, are flawless. This is one of those songs you could play again and again and again and never tire of it, or at least, I wouldn’t. I have always adored it for its simplicity, and probably always will.

7. Straight Outta Compton – N.W.A.

Classic hip-hop. It’s a decent listen, and like listening to someone’s tales of living in a precarious situation, and seeing it through their eyes. I think there may be an excessive amount of both ego and bad language, but, then again, this is one of the songs that solidified what hip hop could be.

8. Opel – Syd Barrett

A simplistic singer-songwriter tune. Lyrically, it’s poetic, and I think that may be it’s main appeal, as the guitar playing isn’t exactly awe-inspiring. However, there is a level of enjoyment.

9. Everyday Is Like Sunday – Morrissey

With his solo career, Morrissey seemed to experiment with  a bit of a different sound than The Smiths. However, that’s not a bad thing, as “Everyday Is Like a Sunday” demonstrates perfectly. Lyrically perfect, I find myself entranced by this track. It has an upbeat style, but a melancholy tone in many senses, which may add to the beauty of the song.

10. Orinoco Flow – Enya

Something about this reminds me of a film I watched as a kid; I don’t know if it’s just because it’s a somewhat theatrical song, or what, but it’s hard to escape that feeling. I know I’ve heard this song many times before, but the more I hear it, the more I picture it in a film. The vocals on this track are impeccable, especially when you add in all the stunning harmonies.

 

Back to the wind and grind tomorrow, not that it ever truly stops. I loved the balanced mixture present on this playlist, and the fact that it finished off with Enya. Pretty much good luck on my part.

I’m hoping this week starts off a lot better than last week ended!

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VIDEO: “Somethin’ Bad” – Miranda Lambert ft. Carrie Underwood

Miranda Lambert and Carrie Underwood just premiered the video for the song “Somethin’ Bad,” which the duo performed at the 2014 Billboard Music Awards. The track has since become a hit, gracing radio stations left and right. Check out the video below!

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REVIEW: Mark Weber ‘Crashing: In Color’

Crashing In Color Album Cover

New artists are a dime a dozen. Original artists are a bit more rare, unfortunately. Whenever the ‘play’ button is hit on an EP, I hold my breath until the music starts, just for fear that my ears will bleed. This is usually even worse when I listen to a sophomore EP, as I plead silently that the band doesn’t experience the legendary ‘sophomore slump.’ However, I was pleased to listen to Mark Weber’s follow-up EP, Crashing: In Color. Not only did it have an intriguing title, but it had me all-ears from start to finish.

The simple introduction to “Crashing In Color” is minimalist enough that it is entrancing. In fact, the whole first minute consist of a simple guitar and vocals that bring a rawness to the song. Then, the guitars kick in, bringing the song to life in a new way. With the contrasting styles featured on the track, Mark Weber showcases his incredible ability to be versatile, while remaining consistent with his overall tone. The single version, which closes out Crashing: In Color, is still immensely impressive, just carrying a more electrifying, summer-festival style power to it.

Although “Pages Turning” seems to have been approached with a similar formula, there is more of a punk/pop-punk edge that hits like the bass pounding from an amplifier at Warped Tour. The lyrics are harsh, but there is a conflicting emotion of “I detest you” to “I love you.” I suppose Weber has captured a tumultuous relationship well by putting the spotlight on the shifting emotions. Continuing with the more “punk” sound, “Novelist” has a vibe that reminds me a bit of late 90s, early 2000s. One of the longer tracks on Crashing: In Color, the song lives up to its name, telling a tale of woe and survival, accompanied by an electrifying instrumental.

“A Long Way To Go” begins with the simplicity of the first track, but has a poetry to it that makes it stand out in a noteworthy fashion, as well as coming across as a bit more theatrical. Like a shorter cousin, “Circles” has a similar impact, and, following its predecessor, will take listeners back to the early 2000s, reminiscent of the days as a child where music was the escape and “punk” was more than a word or a genre: it was a feeling.

 

Crashing: In Color is set to be released on July 15th, 2014.

 

For more on Mark Weber, please check out the following:

https://twitter.com/theemarkweber

http://facebook.com/theemarkweber

https://www.youtube.com/user/musicmarkweber

http://theemarkweber.bandcamp.com/

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1001 Songs Challenge: Day Sixty-Nine

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Got love waking up on a Saturday and being ready for the day…which I totally wasn’t. If I’m entirely honest, I was pretty much out of it with exhaustion for the first hour or so. So here’s hoping this playlist hits me quickly and wakes me up.

1. Just Like Heaven – The Cure

So catchy and so fun. This may be one of the most upbeat The Cure songs ever, and easily one of my favorites. Lyrically, this is a summer song, reminding me of every story of fast-paced summer love I’ve ever seen in films, read about, or even listened to friends gab on about forever.

2. The One I Love – R.E.M.

This is a pretty dark song, and the irony is, tons of people are like, “Oh, it’s so romantic.” Not really. I really love this song, just because it is so subtle in its brutality. There is a savage hatred towards love, but it’s not done in the same aggressive style many songwriters approach it with.

3. Fairytale of New York – The Pogues

I adore this song. I featured it on the Planet Stereo St. Patrick’s Day playlist because a) it’s by an Irish group, and b) it’s amazing. I love the banter between Shane MacGowan and Kirsty MacColl. I also find it brilliant that this is a Christmas song!

4. Paradise City – Guns N’ Roses

This song plays at the gym all the time, so I do have a bit of a soft spot for it. It’s unfairly catchy, meaning that even if you wanted to despise it, you couldn’t. I have no shame in admitting that I sing this at the top of my lungs quite happily. The screeching vocals on this track are amazing.

5. Never Let Me Down Again – Depeche Mode

A bit darker in comparison to Depeche Mode’s earlier works. In all truth, I find it more enjoyable, and most likely for that reason.

6. Faith – George Michael

Another one of my favorite songs of all time. In all truth, if this doesn’t make you want to sing and dance with a huge grin on your face, you are officially crazy. It starts off with a fast-paced acoustic guitar and only goes from there. It is perfection.

7. Need You Tonight – INXS

Now this is one of those tracks you are convinced you’ll hate, but always enjoy. It always makes me smile, because I think of that scene from Coyote Ugly. There is a desperation to it, but it’s approached so casually that it’s striking and somewhat brilliant.

8. With or Without You – U2

I love this song. Seriously, adore it. It’s a classic. From the heartfelt, conflicting lyrics to the fabulous instrumental, what’s not to love? It’s the torment of the narrator, whether it’s Bono, Rachel and/or Ross on Friends, or even an artist giving the song ago, the emotion of this song is easily conveyed. For me, this will always be special to me, because it is the first official music video I ever assisted on. I spent the day with an incredible group of people to make the video below happen, and I’m very proud to say I was a part (albeit small) of it.

9. Freak Scene – Dinosaur Jr.

I was more surprised that I actually knew this song than I was anything else. It’s noisy and has an early grunge/alternative-rock feel to it, with a melodic edge. I like the almost tangible frustration that is evident throughout the track. And can we also take a moment to appreciate one hell of a guitar solo?

10. Follow The Leader – Eric B. & Rakim

Lots of James Brown samples, which is probably not a bad thing. Ever. I actually enjoy this song. It’s definitely got a “get off your ass and get what you want” vibe to it, which I’ll always favor in songs. It helps that the spitfire rhymes on this track are quick-witted enough to hold my interest.

 

Overall, a pretty good playlist today. I was happy for the more rock and roll focus, as well as how some of my favorites just happened to be slipped in. It definitely geared me up for the day ahead.

After listening to the playlist, I went to do a photoshoot for my friend, and country singer/songwriter, Jesse Winslow, and I think it worked out pretty well. Here’s two of the final shots:

 

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1001 Songs Challenge: Day Sixty-Eight

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Once again, my friends, TGIF! So glad that the weekend is here! Today seemed to tick by pretty slowly, which drove me nuts. Another thing that’s driving me crazy? Constant hunger! I mean, I did burn 500 calories + today from exercise, but I wish there was an off-button for hunger some days.

Oh well. Other than that, the day was decent…and I’m hoping this playlist will be as well!

1. Camaron – Pata Negra

With a wailing electric guitar reminiscent of the blues of the 50s and a rhythm matching a flamenco, this song is a blend of traditional and classic. It’s not just the instrumental that will have people smiling listening to this song, it’s the overall tone; something about this song has a happiness to it that is undeniable. The more I hear it, the more I want to sway and tap my feet.

2. Amandari – Ali Farka Toure

This is truly one of the most impressive songs I have heard throughout this playlist. The bluesy style is overwhelmingly brilliant, and it brings an attitude to the spotlight all its own. It’s simple, but so powerful.

3. Push It – Salt-N-Pepa

One of the random rap songs that I really enjoy, especially because it is so melodic and fun. It’s a very catchy song, and Salt-N-Pepa were original in their sound, which made them even more likable. I’ll admit, it’s a bit silly, but that’s why it’s so good! Every time I hear this, I want to dance around my room and act like I don’t care about anything.

4. Bring The Noise – Public Enemy

This actually isn’t that bad, funny enough. I am almost surprised I don’t mind listening to this, as I have never been huge on hip-hop. However, I like the old school sound, and how much fun this song is to listen to.

5. True Faith – New Order

At first, I wasn’t sure about this. I was hesitant to give it a chance, and I can’t even explain why. But when I pressed play, I found myself really enjoying this track. Not only does it have a great little narrative with poetic lyrics, but the dance beat with the almost alternative tone of the vocals blend perfectly.

6. It’s a Sin – Pet Shop Boys

Honestly, there is a gospel feel to this that reminds me of Madonna’s “Like a Prayer,” although I’m pretty sure that came after this song. The dance track is surprisingly theatrical, but also consists of a striking narrative. Definitely worth the listen!

7. Pump Up The Volume – M|A|R|R|S

I’m going to be extra judgmental for a second and say: What a shite band name. For an electronic song, it isn’t awful…but it is awfully repetitive. I just wasn’t overly impressed.

8. Birthday – The Sugarcubes

Despite having a title associated with something a bit happier, “Birthday” is a bit eerie, although I will totally own up and say that Bjork’s vocals are pretty impressive on this track.

9. Beds Are Burning – Midnight Oil

I am not sure how I feel about this. The lyrics are great; Midnight Oil are a great political band. However, I wasn’t overly impressed by the vocals, initially. When the group comes together to deliver the vocals, I find myself in awe. Very confusing territory…

10. Ye Ke Ye Ke – Mory Kante`

This was an unusual one for me, although I loved the back and forth between female and male vocals, like a call-and-response. Something about the rhythm of this song is incredibly catchy, but it is definitely strange to me. I don’t think I’ve ever heard anything like it, and I am glad. I loved listening to how unusual this was, and taking it in without any judgement.

So, with Friday night coming to a close, I prep for Saturday. Tonight’s playlist definitely had me intrigued, as it was very versatile. That may be what I’m enjoying most about the 80s pages–the diversity.

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1001 Songs Challenge: Day Sixty-Seven

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Music is one of my favorite things in the world, obviously. Happy, sad, or whatever, I always go to music. Today, after a day of up and downs, including pure anger, I was more than happy to turn to this playlist tonight. In fact, it was exactly what I needed.

1. Move Your Body – Marshall Jefferson

As a personal trainer, I had high expectations from the title alone (yes, I know you shouldn’t make snap judgements on a track based on title). Despite its house/dance genre, there is a jazzy piano introduction that is brilliant to listen to. This is a decent dance track, and something you’d definitely have expected to hear at a personal training studio about ten years ago.

2. Rise – Public Image Ltd.

This is an 80s staple. I guarantee, if you sing, “I could be wrong, I could be right!” someone else will sing, “I could be black, I could be white!” Drawing from the accounts of victims of the South African apartheid, the lyrics are powerful, especially when added with the rock-edge of the instrumental, as well as the versatility of the sound it possesses.

3. Love Can’t Turn Around – Farley “Jackmaster” Funk

Deemed a house classic, it is a bit much for me; it seems to try a little too hard. However, it is memorable, which is perhaps why it was included in the list. It’s definitely the sort of track I can imagine being extremely popular in 1986, when it came out. I am most fond of the piano part of the song, as it possesses the most character to me.

4. Dear God – XTC

As someone who is not religious, I wasn’t sure what to expect. When I listened and realized it was a letter to God explaining why he couldn’t believe, I was intrigued. In all truth, I wondered if I would hear the reasons that have been rattling in my own brain for all these years. I wondered if someone else didn’t believe they had the patience for it either. Overall, it was a good song, especially when the introduction kicks off with a child singing, before moving into both a more adult voice and phrasing.

5. Don’t Want To Know If You Are Lonely – Husker Du

The contrast between the conflicting emotions present in both the lyrics and the tone and the more aggressive music is what makes this both a great breakup anthem, as well as early pop-punk, in my opinion. I actually surprised myself with the fact that I liked it. It was extremely catchy and a great listen.

6. Kiss – Prince & The Revolution

An iconic song in its own right. However, I am often torn, unsure of whether or not I actually like it. Between his falsetto and the lack of bass, there is something that draws you in, I won’t even pretend to not notice that. However, all I can think about when I hear this is the scene from Pretty Woman.

7. Attencion Na SIDA – Franco

From the opening notes, this song had me completely entranced. It is stunning. With such a happy tune to it, you’d never know it was written as an awareness piece for the aids pandemic. The title of the track translates to “Beware of AIDS.” Franco, both an AIDS patient and extremely outspoken, has a booming vocal that really does have a hold over listeners.

8. Under The Milky Way – The Church

Hauntingly poetic and sharp, this song is a masterpiece. There is something anthemic about it, as well as cinematic. I find myself playing this one again and again. It’s got an ethereal quality to it that makes it an automatic classic.

9. Bamboleo – Gipsy Kings

I love this song and the pure skill that you can hear as each note gets played. The vocals are strong and only add to the energetic quality of the track. This is like being back in Spain and watching the flamenco dancers. I can almost picture their stunning, colorful dresses as the incredible house band plays with a proficiency that leaves audiences baffled. This song can transport you there.

10. This Corrosion – The Sisters of Mercy

With a somewhat eerie choral beginning fazing into an electronic pop-rock anthem, I wasn’t really sure what to do with this track. All I know is that I actually liked it. The vocals reminded me somewhat of David Bowie and the overall sound has a power to it that is undeniable.

 

…and so ends a mixed bag of a day, with a great playlist to cap it off. I liked the versatility of this playlist. It was a bit unpredictable, which, I suppose imitated my day.

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Jimmy Eat World ‘Futures’ Tour Pre-sale

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Ten years seems to fly by in an instant. Even when it feels like it’s dragging; in hindsight, it flies. Ten years ago (in October), Jimmy Eat World released the amazing album, Futures. To celebrate, the band has launched a pre-sale of the tour, which kicked off today. Click for your date to purchase tickets!

Stoked to announce a USA tour to celebrate the 10th Anniversary of Futures! Pre-sales start Thur, June 26 @ 10a local. Password is FUTURES.

 

10/2 Ventura, CA – Ventura Theater – http://ticketf.ly/1nA2bTx 

10/3 Sacramento, CA – Ace of Spades – http://bit.ly/1llJnL8 

10/4 Oakland, CA – Oakland Metro Opera – http://tktwb.tw/T4pw7D 

10/7 Denver, CO – Ogden Theater – http://bit.ly/1nA2rSC 

10/10 Des Moines, IA – Wooly’s – http://ticketf.ly/1mh0gqg 

10/11 Bloomington, IL – Castle Theater – http://ticketf.ly/1jaqPsx 

10/12 Cincinnati, OH – Bogart’s – http://bit.ly/T4pJHR 

10/13 Columbus, OH – Newport Music Hall – http://bit.ly/1sAL9wI 

10/15 Washington, DC – 9:30 Club – http://ticketf.ly/1iADgD2 

10/16 Stroudsburg, PA – Sherman Theater – http://bit.ly/T4pTig 

10/17 Port Chester, NY – Capitol Theater – http://bit.ly/1sALuiS 

10/18 Providence, RI – Lupo’s Heartbreak Hotel – http://bit.ly/1pwzbyw 

10/20 Westbury, NY – Space at Westbury Hall – http://bit.ly/1nZfJeu 

10/21 Norfolk, VA – The Norva – http://bit.ly/UDn1KV 

10/22 Raleigh, NC – The Ritz – http://bit.ly/TqraRh

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Lakes Announce New Album: ‘Fire Ahead’

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Lakes, the indie-rock band from San Luis Obispo, CA is thrilled to announce their upcoming new album, Fire Ahead, which is due to be released on July 22nd via Armacost Records.

Fire Ahead has been described as the band’s most definitive album yet. “The album is a raw look into our world, our story, and the pieces that have made this band a family,” the band says.

 

You can watch a teaser video for the album here:

<p><a href=”http://vimeo.com/95992258″>Lakes – Fire Ahead</a> from <a href=”http://vimeo.com/lakesband”>Lakes</a&gt; on <a href=”https://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>

 

Fire Ahead Track Listing:

1. Fire Ahead A.

2. 1992

3. Hold On

4. Hide Away

5. My Misery

6. Santa Ana Winds

7. Yellie

8. Holiday

9. Armacost Avenue

10. Diamond Eyes

11. Goodbye Santa Monica

12. Fire Ahead B.

 

The band has also announced a string of upcoming shows in promotion of Fire Ahead. All dates can be found below. Lakes will be holding a special record release show in their hometown of San Luis Obispo on July 19th at SLO Brew with support from Fialta and Good Brother! Tickets for the record release show are on sale now here: http://ticketf.ly/1qwG2cQ

 

Upcoming Tour Dates

June 27 – Atascadero, CA – Roberts

July 2 –  Paso Robles, CA – Artist Fahrm

July 12 – Bakersfield, CA – Sandrinis

July 19 – San Luis Obispo, CA – SLO Brew, Record Release Show

July 22 – San Luis Obispo, CA – TBD

July 24 – Redding, CA – Vintage

July 25 – Chico, CA – TBD

July 26 – Portland, OR – TBD

July 27 – Bend, OR – Volcanic Theater

July 28 – Seattle, WA – TBD

August 6 – Fresno, CA – Audies Olympic

 

Lakes is comprised of Matt Covington, Jeremy Wells, Jacob Wick, and Seth Roberts. The band has had previous features in SPIN and has performed alongside the likes of Cold War Kids, Sheryl Crow, Anberlin, Copeland, and more.

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Izzy Malik Self-Titled Debut Out NOW

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Nineteen year-old pop artist Izzy Malik has just released her self-titled EP, which combines pop with the narrative style of modern country. The EP can be purchased on iTunes here: http://bit.ly/1nxepO6. For more information on Izzy, you can visit:  http://theizzymalik.tumblr.com/ 

 Izzy is a young artist who moved to America from the Taliban-dominated Pakistan when she was three years old. At nineteen years old, after years of determination and hard work, she has released her self-titled debut, announcing her presence in pop’s global scene.

 

Having experienced unjust conditions in Pakistan as a child, Izzy was driven to make a statement about today’s Pakistani conflicts by penning her first single, “Malala.” The song, and accompanying video, is a poignant tribute to Malala Yousufzai, the young woman who was shot by the Taliban for wanting an education and survived. “That story really spoke to me. Malala was two years younger than me,” Izzy says.  Not only does the song honor Malala’s boldness, it also inspires listeners to make the most of the opportunities available to them.   Watch Izzy’s video for “Malala” here:

 

Izzy Malik’s new EP is now available on iTunes: http://bit.ly/1nxepO6.

  

Track listing:

  1. Just Another Boy
  2. Need To Know
  3. Last First Kiss
  4. Smart Is Beautiful
  5. Live The Dream
  6. Malala (Bonus Track)
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EVENT: Glamour Kills Announces 1st Round Of Bands For 3rd Annual Dodgeball Invitational

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Glamour Kills Clothing will be hosting their 3rd Annual Dodgeball Invitational on July 14thfrom 2-6pm at the Riverfront Sports Complex in Scranton, PA. The first round of participating bands has been announced to include We Are The In Crowd, The Word Alive, Neck Deep, and State Champs. This event is free to attend!

 

Stay tuned for more bands to be announced soon!

Visit www.glamourkills.com  for more information & details.

The Dodgeball Invitational is located at: 814 Providence Road, Scranton, PA 18508

 

The brand recently launched a UK web store. Customers will receive 10% site wide with the coupon code GKUK14 for the entire month. Offer ends June 27th. To visit the UK web store, head to: www.glamourkills.co.uk

 

WHAT: Glamour Kills 3rd Annual Dodgeball Invitational

WHERE: Riverfront Sports Complex, 814 Providence Road, Scranton, PA 18508

WHEN: Monday, July 14th – 2PM-6PM

PARTICIPATING TEAMS: We Are The In Crowd, The Word Alive, Neck Deep, State Champs, & more!

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