All posts by Tommy Johnson

Since the year 2000, Ghettoblaster has been putting out a quarterly print magazine.  For Ghettoblast from the Past, we look back at the bands and artists that were showcased within these pages.

From Issue 28, Rhymesayers Entertainment Atmosphere.  Words by Jason Kordich.  Photo by Steve Sandlin.


To subscribe to Ghettoblaster Magazine or to pick up this issue, head over to our In Print page.

Coming off their 7” single via Dirty Hit Records Rodeo, QTY have shared the single “Rodeo”.  Recorded by Bernard Butler (Suede), “Rodeo” has all the garage rock swagger that is infused by the duo’s NYC roots.

Singer Dan Lardner:  “’Rodeo’ is half of our relationship summed up in a 2 minute 30 second song.  The “person” getting referenced every chorus is Alex; the rest of the lyrics are a slant-rhyming summarization of how I viewed the moments in life in between the ones where Alex could be there to get my head straight.”

Listen to “Rodeo” below:

Rodeo is set to be released via Dirty Hit on December 16.



Cincinnati, Ohio’s own Mad Anthony have released the video for “Little Love”. The track is part of Mad Anthology-a project that features the band releasing new music each week for the entire year. From their blistering punk rock roots to uncharted territory in other genres (country, pop), Mad Anthology is about deepening the artist-fan relationship and pushing the boundaries of the conventional album and touring cycle.

Mad Anthony’s lead singer Ringo Jones on the song:
“”Little Love” is about putting your heart and soul into a project because you believe in it. For us, music is a labor of love and we never expect great riches or fame from making it. We make music because we have to, it keeps our hearts pumping and minds wandering. Every piece of love or encouragement we get in return fuels the fire to keep going.”

Directed by Jones, “Little Love” is just part of the band pushing themselves into exploration of emerging new media. Pursuing his MFA in Experience Design outside of the band, Jones also wanted to push Mad Anthony’s next batch of music videos in a new direction.

To maximize the viewing experience, watch the 360° video on Google Chrome, the YouTube app, and Mad Anthony’s Facebook page (click link below).

“Little Love” will released November 4.  You can buy this song and other tracks for Mad Anthology on the band’s website.

Known for having live shows that are rowdy and full of reckless mayhem, London’s own King Nun are setting out to make a name here in the States.

King Nun have recently signed with Dirty Hit, the label that also includes The 1975 and Wolf Alice. Being just eighteen years old, the members of King Nun are about to have quite the future ahead of them.

The band’s debut Tulip will be released November 18.

Here’s the first song off the album “Tulip”.

Luke Roberts has lived quite a life up to this point; chockfull of moments and experiences that have allowed him to define his own definition of freedom.  Train-hopping alongside the Tennessee valley as a kid.  Bouncing around from coast to coast.  Living in the remote areas of Cambodia, Thailand, and Kenya for an extended period of time.  Now residing in Nashville, Roberts has the fortune of being around his mother, sister and her children.

All hasn’t been easy for the singer/songwriter; the price of being able to go about seeing the world on his terms has come with a cost.  A far from picture-perfect childhood, living in his car for a short period of time, and dealing with bouts of devastating heartbreak.  One constant through all the highs and lows for Roberts has been music.

Sunlit Cross is a “lullaby that pits darkness, disenchantment, and the ugly side of life against levity, love, and childhood”, according to Roberts regarding his new album.  Having written most of the lyrics during his time in Kenya, Roberts was blessed to record with John Neff (Drive-By Truckers) and Creston Spiers (Harvey Milk).  Kurt Vile, who had Roberts join him on previous tours, lends his vocals and banjo on “Silver Chain.”  Under the supervision of Kyle Spence, Sunlit Cross is sonically richer than previous efforts.  In some aspects, Roberts considers his third album to be a rebirth for his music career.  He jokingly did mention that he would like to have someone handle most of the social media responsibilities.  “I don’t mess with any of them except for Instagram, because I really enjoy photography,” Roberts said.

Ghettoblaster caught up with Roberts to talk about a variety of topics.  When we spoke, Roberts had just concluded a morning full of running errands with his son: “we did some banking and bought some Lego’s”.

What made you go about train hopping as a young kid?

For some reason, I think it been the first movie I ever saw Oliver Twist. I haven’t seen it since but I still remember the kids living in the streets; doing a pick pocketing thing, hustling in the streets.  That was everything to me.  That was I wanted to do from then on-run away from home; living in the streets and hustle.

I started running away from home when I was 11.  I went to juvenile for stealing beer when I was 11.  I left home forever a few years later, when I was at the age of 14.

Looking back on it, do you wish that you didn’t run away?

There are times that I wish my life was different, but I don’t regret it.  I can honestly say that I didn’t go too introspective about it when I was young.  I was literally living in the moment.

You lived in Kenya for a little bit.  How did that come about?

It was after I toured.  I got a record out on Thrill Jockey and they sent me to Europe; I left the country for the first time ever.  I was just like, ‘Oh shit!  This is what I want to do-see the rest of the world’.  It hadn’t occurred to me before that I wanted to that.  I met this woman who had been to a lot of places and was down to travel with me.  We didn’t really know where to go exactly…we picked Kenya at random.  I can’t remember how we picked it now.  We were just spinning a globe, looking and researching places.

What got you into playing music?

It’s all I ever wanted to do as a teenager…I got really obsessed.  I was really into hardcore then.  I went to Olympia, Washington and wanted to join bands like Bikini Kill, Unwound.  I stayed there for five years; it was the first time that I got a job and an apartment, grew up a little bit.  I ended up playing in bands with people from Bikini Kill and Unwound.

I stopped caring about music so much for a little while and really got interested in visual arts.  I tried to move to New York a few times and it felt a little overwhelming, so I bounced around the country.  Giving myself an education about art, I got back into music accidentally because of that.  I started listening to tons of old roots, old American folk music.  Remembered that I could play the guitar and started playing again.  That replaced my obsession with trying to become an artist.  I said, ‘I’m going to make this my art project.  I’m going to write my own folk songs.’

You have been fortunate enough to play music with some amazing musicians, including Kurt Vile on the new album.  How did you two meet?

A friend that we have in common said that I should reach out and play shows together.  I sent him my first album before it came out.  He liked it and he would love to play shows with me.  After that, (Spencer) plays drums for me ended up being Vile’s drummer.  It got us reconnected again.

Sunlit Cross was recorded at Ronniejone$ound in Georgia.  What was that experience like?

The scenery was influential.  I can tell you that I’m really lucky doing what I do is in part to those guys.  Things wouldn’t have worked out the way that they did with anyone else, musically.

Sunlit Cross is out now via Thrill Jockey Records.  To order the album, click here.


During the height of the Myspace popularity, Ghost Car Records was a sizable hub of synthwave musicians. One of the notables, Sakura Night, started a correspondence with a young fan named Sky Ferreira.  Soon after, plans were put into place to begin a collaboration.

As part of a forthcoming Ghost Car retrospective by Swedish Columbia, Sakura Night’s track “Sky Ferreira” was released today.

“Sky Ferreira” and other the other tracks included in the Ghost Car release will be available for the first time ever in a proper release. Swedish Columbia Records will release it on cassette in a special Mock-VHS style package.

 To order the album, click here.

Wilson’s Reservoir have released the single “Two Rights”, coming off their latest The Last Will and Testament of Buck Baker.

Taking their name after an actual reservoir in Georgia, the indie-tinged rock music that Wilson’s Reservoir delivers is filled with soul and emotion-a staple that follows primary songwriter Ben Wilson and his family legacy.

The Last Will and Testament of Buck Baker is a concept record rooted in the echoes of that rhythm of home. “Mom told me of Great Grampa Buck Baker” says Wilson, “a vaudevillian known to entertain John Dillinger in the Kokomo, IN, area. Writing these songs, I imagined Buck singing them. He gave up my Grampa (Monte) after his wife passed away, when he was 3 months old. The record explores heartbreak, commitment or lack thereof, and warning future generations to not follow in one’s footprints. The final section of the record is Buck fighting with himself to find redemption. Yet he can’t escape his own nature, and by the end he’s back at his old ways. We all have a story. I met Buck once; yet his life has a lasting impact. Being a father I ask myself, what kind of legacy am I leaving behind?”

Recorded with Josh Antonuccio at 3 Elliot Studio in Athens, OH, The Last Will and Testament of Buck Baker features core band members Wilson (guitar, lead vocals), Andrew Martin (bass, backing vocals), Andrew Hauser (drums, percussion, backing vocal) and Rafael Chávez y Moreno (lead Guitar, keys, backing vocals) and guest musicians John Borchard (pedal steel), Ryan Brock (keyboard), Josh Antonuccio (piano, keyboard, guitar), and Alasha Al-Qudwah (strings.)

The Last Will and Testament of Buck Baker is set to be released November 18. To pre-order the album, click here.

Since the year 2000, Ghettoblaster has been putting out a quarterly print magazine.  For Ghettoblast from the Past, we look back at the bands and artists that were showcased within these pages.

From Issue 22, Don Giovanni Records Screaming Females.  Words by Jim Testa.  Photo by Toni Skotcher.

Also from Issue 22, Weightless Recordings Illogic.  Words by Mildred C. Fallen.  Photo by Roman Titus.


To subscribe to Ghettoblaster Magazine or to pick up this issue, head over to our In Print page.

October 28th can’t come fast enough.  Why you ask?  Tanimura Midnight will we be releasing their latest album Tears Disappeared In The Night. Coming off from their 2015’s Wrong Number, Tanimura Midnight have taken their admiration for 80’s cinema scores, 8-bit gamer soundtracks, and Air to soaring heights. Deeper waves of synth, dramatic guitars conjure up classic tech-noir film soundtracks vibes.

Revered to many for his stunning work with DC punk/emo projects Frodus and Decahedron, Shelby Cinca is guiding Tanimura Midnight alongside Nick Anderson(Aloha, Title Tracks). Over the last few years, Tanimura Midnight have garnered global recognition; the live action video for Playstation 3’s game Hotline Miami 2 was largely acclaimed.

Today, Tanimura Midnight has released the first single off of Tears Disappeared In The Night, “M-Blade”. Here’s what Cinca said regarding the song:

“M-Blade is the only track I co-wrote with my friend Marcus Baide who handles animatics (a video of how the storyboard and transitions work) for Cartoon Network. He’s always busy doing that but he’s also great piano player and a fan of fusion/jazz stuff like Return To Forever which is our funny meeting point on music. After finally meeting up, I started with drums while we were eating nachos at a bar and then finished up in my studio space as I guided him and sampled his riffs. The final version veered towards Jan Hammer with a synth-bend break that was a small side-thought during our session which I feel captured an eerie feel that never was really explored in Tanimura Midnight tracks. I definitely hope to make more tracks with Marcus in the future and hopefully get his original tunes to see the light!”

As one of Swedish Columbia Records “Synthwave October” releases, the cassette version of Tears Disappeared In The Night will appear in the labels’ Mock-VHS 80’s packaging.


To pre-order the album, click here.