Monthly Archives: November 2014

The Word Alive Premiere “The Runaway” Video

The Word Alive

 

The Word Alive debuted their “The Runaway” music video today, which is featured on the band’s new album, REAL., which debuted at #33 on the Billboard Top 200 and is now available on iTunes.

The video concept was actually written by lead vocalist Telle Smith, and filmed in the band’s home-state of Arizona. Director Jeremy Tremp helps The Word Alive take fans through the personal story of how each member got their start in music, an attempt at making it clear to fans that their stories aren’t too different from their own, hoping to spread the message of how powerful and redemptive music can be. You can view the video below:

 

 

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INTERVIEW: The Cinema

The Cinema
Main info.
Name: Matt Malpass (producer/musician)
Band: The Cinema
Current mood: “Trying to stay warm and pretend it’s not 25 degrees in Atlanta. I’m in the south! It should never be this cold!”
Dream Collaboration: “Maybe Radiohead or The Beatles, something fun or experimental. Either that or NSYNC, ya know.”
Over the years, the creative process behind an album has changed dramatically. There’s new equipment in the studios, new means of the musicians communicating ideas, and, of course, the ability to work on separate sides of the country. Have you ever seen the old Google Docs commercial where Hall & Oats are trying to write the lyrics for “Maneater”? Hearing about the duo behind The Cinema may remind people of that commercial. Matt Malpass (producer) and Leighton Antelman (of Lydia) live on opposite sides of the coast, but have still garnered attention from listeners all over the world.
“Usually, [songwriting] starts with me sitting in the studio alone and just coming up with a spark of an idea, whether it’s a chord progression, a beat, or a random lyric. I’ll usually sketch out a rough idea of what I’m thinking musically, and sometimes I’ll throw down vocal/lyric ideas too, then I’ll bounce down an mp3 and send it over to Leighton,” Malpass explains. “If he’s feeling the idea, he’ll start working on it, adding additional instruments, and writing vocals, or changing around the vocals I started. Then, he’ll email me the files and I’ll throw them in the session and build over on top of that. If he’s not feeling it, or we both get stuck, it’ll go in the “bad/unused ideas” folder.
“I [actually] just looked, and there are currently fifteen songs in that folder, so we were a bit picky about which songs we actually kept and which we just put to side and didn’t finish. When we finally have a good handful of solid ideas, Leighton will fly to the studio here in Atlanta, and we’ll start tracking real vocals and then collaborating to finish the final 80% of the song.”
The Cinema will be releasing their new album, Talking In Your Sleep, on December 18th. The pair have been crafting the album since 2012, with many fans now chewing the bit for new music. Malpass is quick to express his own excitement over the release. “I’m excited for people who have been asking us about it for the past two years to finally get a chance to see what’s been going on!”
Listeners are already commenting their excitement all over the band’s Facebook page, with some even questioning what’s been taking The Cinema so long. “I feel like, at this point, we’ve been straining this record along for so long that people might have thought we were never going to finish it. [I’m] really excited to just share the songs with people and see how they react.”
Between the rigorous touring schedule with Lydia, and the madness of consistent producing, the pair seem to have barely had a moment to put their feet up, never mind record an album, but they have accomplished the task, and it is easy to predict that the material will be even better because of it.

“[Writing]’s been super unconventional, but the strange thing is that both of us seem to write better when we’re by ourselves, so [being on opposite coasts] wasn’t as big of an issue as you might think,” Malpass says thoughtfully. “I like sitting in the studio by myself and coming up with the base musical ideas without anyone being here because I can try whatever I want without feeling like someone’s gonna laugh if it sounds bad, or feel pressure if the right idea doesn’t come out. I’ve noticed that Leighton seems to write vocals best when he’s alone in a room with just a few books and his laptop; we did almost no writing in collaboration together in the same room, even when we were rehoming the final ideas and we’re both in the same physical location. If Leighton needed to finish a vocals part, he would usually just go to a different room and finish it, and then come back in to track it. For some reason, both of us just seem to have better luck when writing alone, as much as that doesn’t make sense…”
The Cinema has provided both Antelman and Malpass a new outlet for their creativity, especially in Malpass’s case, as a producer; one could liken it to a director acting in a role in front of the camera. “[Going into the studio] is a strange line to cross, because, for me personally, I’m a producer and I’m in the studio 24/7 recording other bands and artists,” Malpass explains. “The great thing about The Cinema is getting to switch gears from being a producer for other people.
“I get to go in with a blank slate and be totally creative without having to get the approval of whatever band I may be working with. In this case, it’s just Leighton and I being able to throw around any thoughts we have. I love being able to just throw out crazy ideas and see what sticks without any judgement or anyone looking over my shoulder.”
“Honestly, my favorite [songs] come and go depending on my mood,” Malpass admits. “But I’m sort of partial to ‘Call It In The Air,’ ‘Punchline,’ and ‘Dancing Round Me.'”
 
Malpass encourages other songwriters/musicians to also let their ideas flow. “Don’t be afraid to keep trying and writing songs. You have to write lots and lots of bad songs before you start hitting the good stuff,” he assures. “I’m not sure if I’ve made it there yet, but I know I have hundreds of terrible songs under my belt. NO MATTER WHAT, KEEP WRITING, and as you write, you’ll learn and grow into your style.”
From being as young as eight or nine years old, Malpass worked to learn how to play the guitar, forcing his brothers to learn instruments of their own in order to start a band. In those years, he found his style, allowing his natural talents to shine. “My family was very musical; my grandpas on both sides were in bands–one was a drummer and the other was a guitar player/singer. I’ve always had the support from my family on the music side, so it just always seemed to come naturally.”
Natural, raw talent seems to be the key ingredient to The Cinema, as well as the countless hours of hard work the duo have put in. Before digital media, a band’s main focus was practicing, creating, and recording great music. Now, there’s another layer to it: social media. “[Social media is] helping, because it’s so accessible, but it really challenges bands and artists and management to have to be extremely creative. Since we all have the same tools now, we don’t even need record labels for the most part. As long as you’re smart, have good songs and creative ideas to market them on social media I think it’s great, it pushes everyone to try and think outside the box to reach a broader audience and build that fan base.”
Beyond building the fan base is making sure that they stay connected, which, Malpass admits, is his hope when listeners hear Talking In Your Sleep. “I’d just like them to feel something, anything. If music can make you feel an emotion, regardless of what it might be, then it’s done its job.”
Talking In Your Sleep will be released on December 16th, 2014 (just in time to make the perfect Christmas present). To pre-order the album, click HERE. For more information on The Cinema, please click HERE.
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STREAM: Contra’s New Single and Baby’s Bootleg

Contra-1992-660x400

 

The Aussie/LA electronic trio Contra, recently released their latest single, “1992,” from their upcoming debut EP, The 90s Are All That. The EP celebrates all things Generation Y. You can stream the song below.

Lead singer Baby also did her own rendition of Banks’ “Begging For Thread,” which you can also stream below.
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New Years Day “Epidemic” Fan-video

Anaheim-based rock band, New Years Day, released their brand new EP, Epidemic, on November 17th. The 5-track EP includes popular songs, such as, “Other Side” and “The Joker.” You can purchase it HERE.

The band also premiered the official music video for, “Defame Me,” as well as a lyric video for the title track of the EP, which includes fans who submitted photos and artwork to show their support, using #Epidemic. Check out the video below:

 

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Fall Out Boy Announce New Album

FOB

 

Now it’s the holiday season! Fall Out Boy are releasing their new album, American Beauty/American Psycho, will be released worldwide on January 20th. Digital album pre-orders and physical album preorder packages go on sale Dec 15 and will launch with several instant song downloads including the title track. Following the band’s MONUMENTAL comeback (pun intended), 2014 has been a busy year for the group, with multiple hit singles, including the latest, “Centuries.” The next single will be the title track of the album; the song will be released on December 8th. Below, you can find the statement from the band announcing the album, as well as more details.

 

“the moment where a shadow lets you know where the sun was streaming in. the odd place where light and dark meet. there is a threshold. we all can feel it- it is something palpable… the idea that no matter how much an animal is domesticated- there is still something wild in it. declawed but we take/make the best monsters. we semi-civilize them. we put bears in suits on tricycles. we keep wolves warm from the winter in hen houses. then we wonder why they maul the hearts of what we hold the most dear. but make no mistake you brought them into your house and thought they could become a pet. we have infiltrated you. now we are inside you like a disease. this is a modern love story- coming together and unravelling all at once….

———————————–

“the cancer of time is eating us away. our heroes have killed themselves, or are killing themselves. the hero then, is not time, but timelessness….” henry miller

we thought about where this all began but razing it and starting again. so we reached out to a kindred spirit in sebastiAn- from the past he mined some of the future. the mission is the heart pure and simple as it can be- distilled but never fragmented or disguised. through these experiments, that were sometimes lost in translation, we persevered- “they tried to bury us but they didnt realize we were seeds”…

———————————–

The song “American Beauty/American Psycho” will be released digitally worldwide Dec 8.

Our 6th studio album, also called American Beauty/American Psycho comes out January 20th Worldwide.

Digital album pre-orders and physical album preorder packages go on sale Dec 15 and will launch with several instant song downloads including the title track.”

Download Centuries on iTunes, listen on Spotify.

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Mikey Way (ex-MCR) on Addiction & Getting Clean

Mikey-Way-mikey-way-33758320-746-500

 

Earlier this year, Mikey Way debuted his new band, Electric Century, but has since fallen silent. But now Way has released a statement on the band’s webpage, revealing a long-standing struggle with addiction and his rehabilitation. Below, you can read his full statement.

 

“It’s been a minute since the last time we talked. There’s something I have needed to get off of my chest for quite some time – Because most of you have stuck by my side and supported me for over a decade now and you deserve the truth. The program is about brutal honesty, not only with your self but with others too.

I can’t tell you how many times I have opened Twitter or Instagram over the past 7 months to see someone asking about Electric Century and what is next for the band. I want you all to know why I went dark earlier this year and why I haven’t addressed any of your questions about the band up until this point.

In February of this year, I flew to the East Coast to finish up the EC record. Upon my arrival, I was told “you aren’t here to record” and I instantly knew what was going on. I was going to rehab. I felt an odd sense of comfort and thanked my friends for doing this for me. In the months prior I had come to realize that my addiction was far past me being able to beat it alone. In all honesty, at that point I was lucky to be alive. I have talked about sobriety in the past but frankly it was all just wishful thinking, I could talk with the best of them but now it’s time to do the real work or as they say in the program, “walk the walk”.

Physically entering the rehab facility was one of the most terrifying yet rewarding things I have ever done. Getting onstage and playing in front of tens of thousands of people used to be the most frightening thing for me, but getting the help I knew I needed made that look relaxing. During my 31 plus days of treatment, I learned a lot about myself and a lot about what I needed to do to never go back down that path I had been stumbling upon.

I had been self medicating for more than half my life. And as the band grew, so did the introduction of more drugs and more alcohol. Each time I thought I had hit rock bottom I really hadn’t seen the worst yet. When the band broke up, my using had intensified and I fell into total darkness. In the true form of an addict, I disconnected from everyone I knew and pushed away every one I loved. At that point in my life, I was not only lost but in complete self-destruction mode. In February, I was told I should never have woken up.

Electric Century started because I still had something I wanted to share with the world. I wanted it to be a special project that showed another side of me, and told a story I had wanted to tell for quite some time. During my stay in rehab, I was finally ready to admit something I hadn’t said out loud yet – Touring was just not something I was ready for or wanting to do. I was going along with everything up to that point because that is what I had always done. But, I no longer want to be that person, and I am trying to learn to say no and to put myself, and my mental health first. Will I ever tour with EC… maybe? Where I am in life right now, I want to continue to create and release music. For now, I am letting the chips fall where they may and I am hoping to get this music to all of you as soon as humanly possible.

You don’t really believe them when they warn you about the difficult road ahead. You think it will be easier than it really is. They were right. A few months ago, I was afraid to leave my apartment, afraid to drive my car- afraid of absolutely everything.

But now I can say it’s getting better every day and for the first time in my life I am saying that in all honesty. 8 months in I have more clarity than I have had in decades.

The only thing I am still working on getting past are the decisions I made when I wasn’t me. I still have to own up and take responsibility for these things. I lost friends and I lost time, but those closest to me have accepted my apologies are still by my side and that means so much to me. There are still friendships I am mending to this day, but that is all part of this new life I am creating for myself. You can’t un-ring the bell, but you can always learn to ring it better.

I learned through all of this that it’s okay to ask for help. So for all of you struggling – seek help. Tell someone close to you that you are struggling and allow the program to do it’s work. It saved my life and I am eternally grateful for that. You will be hearing much more from me and EC in the coming months, that I can promise you. Here is to the next chapter in my life and to taking things one day at a time…because that is all we really have.”

 

Way had previously alluded to his addiction, when, three months ago, he posted a picture of a token that signifies six months’ progress.

Planet Stereo would like to take this moment to say good luck to Mikey Way, and to use this time to say that if you or anyone you know are struggling with addiction, please reach out for help, whether it is professional or just a friend.

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Q&A: Eric Dash

Eric Dash

 Singer/songwriter Eric Dash has been generating a lot of buzz lately, becoming a YouTube and VEVO sensation with his first single, “One More Love Song.” With influences ranging from John Mayer to B.B. King, Dash’s original style and soulful sounds make him one to watch. While taking a break from recording his debut album with Jack Joseph Puig (John Mayer, Goo Goo Dolls, No Doubt), Eric Dash is on the road with The Janoskians on the Got Cake Tour, and also sitting down to answer some questions for Planet Stereo.

 

Planet Stereo: Thanks so much for doing the interview. How are you?

Eric Dash: Of course! I’m great thank you! Just thinking about what I’m going to work on today.

 

PS: Your single, “One More Love Song,” recently came out and listeners seem to be loving it. How did the song come about?

ED: I wrote it about a love who I wrote too many songs about, and we were broken up for a year and a half already. It was time to say goodbye.

 

PS: What is your favorite part about going into the studio?

ED: The history and magic. You can feel it in the walls. They treat me very well in studio and I’m a Jersey boy so one of the engineers said “I have a treat for you.” He set up the mic in my room and said, “we haven’t taken this mic out for a while. It’s Frank Sinatra’s microphone. Enjoy.” Magic.

 

PS: Would you mind walking me through the creative process?

ED: I never do something the same way, otherwise it would be contrived and you’d feel that. For me, I try to write something that at least feels completely original even though everything is derived from something. But you can’t do that by listening to a song of a particular genre or artist and trying to write something like it. You have to listen to many songs, learn many songs, let it become a part of you. Then it will come naturally.

 

PS: With such a busy touring schedule, how do you manage to find time to write new material?

ED: Writing happens in so many different ways. I could hear a song on the radio but hear a completely different melody with it so I’ll sing it into my phone recorder. Go to my guitar and make something that works or change the melody and make it work. So it can happen at any point it’s not exactly something to manage.

 

PS: You’ve been working on your debut album. What can listeners expect to hear?

ED: It’s not a typical singer/songwriter album. It will feel like you’re listening to an guitar driven rock/pop/electronic singer/songwriter with a Coldplay X&Y / Rush of Blood air about it. At least that’s my opinion.

 

PS: What would you like people to come away with when they hear your debut?

ED: Solace.

 

PS: Do you have a favorite song to perform live?

ED: Every night it’s different. When the crowd moves and feels, I move and feel.

 

PS: What advice would you offer to young musicians?

ED: No egos. You may think your hot shit and then you’ll turn around and someone is going to blow your face off with talent. It’s going to hurt, but if you go into life knowing that you’ll be just fine.

 

PS: How did you get involved in music?

ED: My father played guitar and piano. So I played guitar and piano. But I was always a writer before player. He was a business man before player.

 

PS: When looking at the current music scene, do you think social media is helping or hindering artists?

ED: Hurting. YouTube is the downfall of artistry in my opinion haha. I say that with a smile. People want to hear covers on YouTube so the writers are drowned out and forgotten. And the artists who don’t write can demand more. That’s why you hear the same kind of music over and over again on the radio. We’re pumped with the same crap that falls in our comfort zone. I can’t wait until the next artist comes to “kill the hair bands” – Nirvana.

 

PS: Any last words?

ED: I try too hard. Thank you for caring to listen. I’m beyond humbled by every person that finds something to hold on to from my music. And I thank God every day for that experience.

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Shayna Steele Releases Fiona Apple Cover

Shayna Steele

 

Jazz/R&B vocalist Shayna Steele has just released her latest single, “Paper Bag,” a cover of Fiona Apple’s famous tune. The track, premiered on Jazz Times, features jazz star Christian McBride on bass. The cover stems from Shayna’s upcoming sophomore full-length, Rise, which is set to release in January 2015, featuring McBride, Marcus Miller, and Eric Harland, only adding to the plethora of noteworthy artists Shayna has worked with, including Bette Midler, Rihanna, Lizz Wright, The Yeah Yeah Yeahs, and more. Check out “Paper Bag” below and let Planet Stereo know what you think!

 

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Record Store Day’s “Black Friday” – November 28th!

record-store-day-black-friday

 

Record Store Day’s “Black Friday” is finally here! This Friday, November 28th, the culture of independent record stores around the globe will be celebrated with the release of limited edition and exclusives vinyl pressings and other onetime-only artifacts expressly for the occasion.

As previously announced, Warner Bros. Records, as a continuing proud official sponsor of Record Store Day, will be making the following special releases including the newly confirmed Neil Young Box Set, a live recording of Green Day, Echosmith‘s breakthrough single, “Cool Kids,” and more. Check out the list below!

 

Neil Young: Official Release Series Discs 5-8 Vinyl Box Set; 4-LP, 180-gram black vinyl in reproduction jackets housed in telescoping box. Limited to 3,500

This limited-edition box set includes the classic albums Time Fades AwayOn The BeachTonight’s The Night,and Zuma, each remastered from the original analog studio recordings at Bernie Grundman Mastering. The artwork is a historically accurate reproduction by Young’s long-time art director, Gary Burden. These classics are being reissued on 180-gram audiophile vinyl for the first time and pressed at the world’s premiere pressing plant, Pallas MFG Germany.

 

Green Day: Tune In Tokyo; Transparent blue vinyl. Limited to 5,000

This limited-edition 2001 live recording from Japan is available worldwide for the first time ever on transparent blue vinyl.

 

Flaming Lips: “Imagene Peise – Atlas Eets Christmas“; Transparent red vinyl. Limited to 5,000

The Flaming Lips secret 2007 Christmas album, Atlast Eets Christmas was previously released in a very limited physical quantity on CD only under the pseudonym Imagene Peise (with a sticker that read “Love Is The Answer – Merry Christmas From The Flaming Lips 2007”). This Black Friday release will mark the first time the album is available both widely and on vinyl.

 

Mastodon: “The Motherload”; 12″ Picture disc. Limited to 5,000.

A limited-edition 12″ vinyl picture disc of the band’s latest single from their current album Once More ‘Round The Sun, featuring stunning artwork by Skinner.  B-side is an exclusive instrumental version of “Halloween”.

 

Jenny Lewis: “Pax-Am Sessions”; 7″ limited-edition mint green vinyl single. Limited to 5,000

This Black Friday exclusive features two unreleased alternate versions of songs from Lewis’ critically acclaimed album The Voyager, produced by Ryan Adams and Mike Viola, on limited-edition mint green vinyl. Side A is “Just One of The Guys (Pax-Am Version)” and Side B is “You Can’t Outrun ‘Em (Pax-Am Version).”

 

Conor Oberst: “Standing On The Outside Looking In” / “Sugar Street”; 7″ vinyl. Limited to3,000

A Black Friday exclusive containing two previously unheard songs – “Standing on the Outside” and “Sugar Street” – recorded during the sessions for 2014’s Upside Down Mountain, produced by Jonathan Wilson. 7″ vinyl in single pocket art sleeve, small hole, 33RPM.

Echosmith: “Cool Kids” 12″ Picture disc vinyl single. Limited to 3,000

A 12″ picture disc of the Los Angeles alt-pop band’s breakthrough single, which hit No. 19 on the Billboard Hot 100. This vinyl edition includes a previously unreleased remix by acclaimed remixer RAC (Tegan & Sara).

Please note that the following title is NOT part of Black Friday but coming Monday November 17th:

 

WilcoAlpha Mike Foxtrot: The Wilco Rarities Anthology, 4-LP Set. Limited to 7,500.

Though this is not a Black Friday Exclusive, be on the lookout for this 4-LP box set containing 47 rare tracks recorded in the studio, most never before released on vinyl. Plated and pressed on 180g audiophile vinyl, this packaged includes a

36-page booklet filled with rare photos, liner notes from the band and their circle, and track-by-track notes by Jeff Tweedy. It also includes a download card for all 77 tracks on the Alpha Mike FoxtrotCD.

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VIDEO: Emergency Tiara – “Around”

Emergency Tiara

 

Emergency Tiara, the New York City-based pop artist and fashion blogger, has released her new music video for “Around.” The video was released via Creem Magazine, but you can view it below. “Around” is the latest single from Emergency Tiara’s debut EP, Until The Stroke Of Midnight, which is available for purchase and download NOW.

 

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