Tag Archive: “Featured”

Paradise
Paradise

Paradise releases their sophomore record, Soldiers of the Modern Age, April 22 via Teen Sound Records. Recorded over two days in a living room at the Magic Closet on the south side of Portland, Oregon, the record is an authentic representation of Paradise’s uniquely vintage-inspired sound complete with Farfisa and Hammond Organ.

Soldiers of the Modern Age explores the complexities of growing up sheltered in the Bible Belt of the United States. Poetically narrating a young man’s adventure from boyhood to manhood, singer Steven Denekas tells his story without hesitation. Armed with only a microphone and his guitar, he relives the complications of youth in a raw, didactic and personal way.

The spirit of Soldiers of the Modern Age argues against monotony and routine. It’s a sound which contends with the music industry standard of masking a band’s true identity behind the digital machine of sound-altering options. Driven by unique storytelling and an unfettered sound, Soldiers of the Modern Age is a liberated exultation for the listener…and the journey is triumphant.

Today, Ghettoblaster has the pleasure of premiering Paradise’s cut “Born and Bound”.  Enjoy it here:

 

South By Southwest starts this week turning Austin, TX into one giant concert where musicians from around the world will be vying for attention.  Here are the bands that we recommend giving your attention to if you’ll be there:

Buffalo Killers:

Buffalo Killers are a    hook-heavy homegrown rock ‘n’ roll band from Ohio, lead by songwriting   brothers Zachary and Andrew Gabbard. The band has drawn the attention of big   names such as Chris Robinson,   who invited them to open a string of dates for The Black Crowes, and Dan   Auerbach from The Black Keys,   who produced their sophomore effort Let   It Ride, to name a few.On their fifth   full-length album Heavy Reverie, The group worked with platinum   producer Jim Wirt who is known   for his work with Incubus, Fiona Apple, and many others. The   record will be officially released on May 13 through Sun Pedal Recordings (distributed by Warner/ADA).

SXSW Day Party @ Botticelli’s – 3/14   – Austin, TX – 6PM
SXSW New Frontier Touring Showcase   @ Holy Mountain – 3/15 – Austin, TX – 12AM
Uncle Doug’s Chili Dog Fest V   @ The Side Bar – 3/16 – Austin, TX – 6:15PM

Cerebral Ballzy:

Brooklyn-based punk band Cerebral Ballzy are   getting ready to release their forthcoming album Jaded & Faded.  Cerebral Ballzy announced in the fall that   they had signed to Cult Records. The label’s owner, Julian Casablancas, says   Cerebral Ballzy are “probably the coolest band in the world at the   moment, a truly legit modern hardcore/punk band, and by far my favorite. It’s   beyond exciting to try and help them in any and all ways we can   and we’re honored to put their deliriously great new   record out on Cult Records.” The band’s new album, produced by TV On The Radio’s Dave Sitek will be   out this year, with more details to follow.

03.12 – Austin, TX @ SXSW – Maggie Mae’s
03.12 – Austin, TX @  SXSW – House Of Vans at The Mohawk (7:30pm   performance)
03.14 – Austin, TX @ SXSW – The Control Room – Blundertown Showcase

Cheap Girls:

Cheap   Girls’ fourth full-length Famous   Graves arrives May 13 via Xtra Mile Recordings Worldwide – the   label’s very first U.S. release.  Previously they have released artists   such as Frank Turner, Against Me! and Tim Berry in the UK and Europe.

Famous Graves was recorded in Chicago and Grand Rapids by Rick Johnson   (who recorded Cheap Girls’ first two records, 2008?s Find Me a Drink Home   & 2009?s My Roaring 20?s) and Jeff Dean (The Bomb, Dead Ending,   All Eyes West). Recorded over three months, the band self-produced the record   and mixed it with the assistance of Dean.  The follow-up to their 2012   release Giant Orange (which was recorded and produced by Against Me!’s   Laura Jane Grace), Famous Graves sees the band continuing to grow   their authentic Midwestern rock that’s drawn comparisons to bands such as The   Lemonheads, The Replacements, and early Smoking Popes.

3/12 – Brixton/Run For Cover SXSW Showcase @ The Liberty (2:55pm)
3/12 – Brooklyn Vegan Official SXSW Showcase @ Red 7 (10:00pm)

Coachwhips:

If you’re unfamiliar, pull up a chair – helmed by John Dwyer (currently of Thee Oh Sees/Damaged Bug) from 2001 to 2005, they were fast, nasty, unintelligible, brutally and primally basic. A telephone through a guitar amp, half a drum kit, a shitty Casio organ, and primal speed-trash riffs never sounded so good.

03.11 – Hotel Vegas – Austin, TX
03.12 – Panache Bruise Cruise – Austin, TX
03.13 – Brixton Party – Yellowjacket – Austin, TX
03.14 – Castleface Party – Hotel Vegas – Austin, TX
03.14 – Sailor Jerry Party – Gypsy – Austin, TX
03.15 – Spider House – Austin, TX
03.15 – Beerland – Austin, TX
# w/ Mary Ocher, Hyenaz, Nad, HOTT MT

Dads:

The duo from New Jersey has been dubbed as leading the “emo revival”  that seems to have the entire music world buzzing after the release of their latest EP, Pretty Good (6131 Records). Pretty Good finds the indie-rock leaning Dads exploring darker territory on the four-song effort. Earning praise everywhere from Pitchfork (“irrepressible spirit and ambition”) to NPR (“one of the bands I’m most excited about right now”) to the AV Club (“it strikes [a] balance of proficiency and punchiness”), it’s clear that Dads have captured the attention of wider audiences with just four tracks.

3/12 – Brixton/Run For Cover SXSW Showcase @ The Liberty (3:35pm)
3/13 – Audiotree Showcase @ Licha’s Cantina (6:30pm)
3/14 – 6131 Records SXSW Showcase @ The Liberty (TBA)

Frameworks:

Gainesville, FL post-hardcore quintet’s upcoming full-length Loom will arrive April 29 via Topshelf Records.  It was recorded by Jack Shirley (Deafheaven, Joyce Manor, Comadre) in his Atomic Garden Studios in San Francisco.  The record sees Frameworks sprawling into more experimental territory, expanding beyond their post-hardcore roots to create a record which is brightly evocative, emotional, overwhelmingly gorgeous and one that sees the band genre-bending to carve out space for what they manage to create in Loom‘s 11 tracks.

3/12 – Brixton/Run For Cover SXSW Showcase @ The Liberty (4:40pm)

3/12 – Brooklyn Vegan Official SXSW Showcase @ Red 7 (9:10pm)

3/13 – Topshelf Records Showcase @ Soho Lounge (1:30pm)

3/13 – NNHO Fest @ 21st Street Co-op (10:40pm)

3/14 – Meatspin 3 @ Habanero House (TBA)

Fucked Up:

Long running Canadian hardcore punk perpetrators, Fucked Up, will discharge the sixth installment of the “Zodiac Series” with Year Of The Dragon this Spring. Melding all the prime tenets of rock, punk, metal and psychedia into a comprehensive and imposing opus of unyielding enormity, the band are sonically and conceptually devouring in ways few bands can emulate.

3/13/2014 French Legation Museum (Pitchfork Day Party) – Austin, TX
3/13/2014 Mohawk (Stereogum Party) – Austin, TX
3/13/2014 Scoot Inn (Converse/Thrasher Death Match) – Austin, TX|
3/14/2014 Empire Control Room (Altamont Party) – Austin, TX w/ Powertrip

Ghetto Ghouls:

Ghetto Ghouls wield the torch of sloppy ‘80s noisy punk like The Dicks, Stick Men, Scratch Acid and work with a drunken urgency best summed up by the fact that their debut album was recorded in just four hours.  From Austin, the band have played in bands together since they were fourteen years old.  Inside the cinder blocks of legendary venue and bar Beerland, the Ghetto Ghouls have grown into one of the best punk bands in town.  In an over saturated landscape of ‘70s worshipping garage bands, a stripped down Texas punk band like this is most definitely needed.  Look out for Ghetto Ghouls on tour this April – May, plus a single this summer on 12XU.
Wed: Ping Pong Booking showcase (Hotel Vegas) 2PM

Wed: Monofonus showcase (Beerland) 2:45PM

Thur: Thread Pull Records Showcase (Trailer Space) 5PM

Sat: Monofonus Official show (The Hideout) 9:20PM

Sun: Panache Hangover show (Beerland) 9PM

Greys: 

Greys will tell you they’re a “loud rock band from Toronto”, but that’s deceivingly simple for the sound the quartet has managed to hone to caustic, powerful perfection.  After the release of three EPs in as many years (2011?s Ultra Sorta, 2012?s Easy Listening and 2013?s Drift), Greys have finally found their way home to Carpark Records and Buzz Records to release their debut full-length If Anything on June 17.

If Anything sees Greys scraping raw the influences of their punk heros, bands such as Drive Like Jehu, Shellac, and Unwound, combining them with a dirty tapestry of angular guitar textures and irregular rhythms that propel the album’s 11 tracks forward at breakneck speed.  Yes, the band writes noise rock, but it’s also some of the poppiest music that’s ever been allowed to lay claim to such a title.

3/12 Austin, TX @ The Liberty (SXSW – Brixton Agency Showcase)
3/13 Austin, TX @ Parish Underground (SXSW – Carpark Records Showcase)
3/14 Austin, TX @ Hole In The Wall (SXSW – Exploding In Sound Showcase)

Grieves:

Seattle rapper Grieves returns to deliver his fourth studio album, Winter & The Wolves, on Rhymesayers Entertainment. The insatiable, devil-may-care MC is well known for his meticulous exploration of life, love and loss, through a unique medley of hip-hop and soulful music. Together with B. Lewis, Grieves created 14 new tracks, combining organic pianos and guitars with boisterous synthesizers, to paint a colorful backdrop for his unique blend of rapping and singing.

A reflection on growth and maturity, Winter & The Wolves is about the instinctual fight for survival. It’s about suddenly finding that you’re all alone, facing countless hindrances to your livelihood, and having the courage to overcome them all. Tackling difficult obstacles like addiction and heartbreak, Grieves wrestles with the realization that life doesn’t get any easier as you get older. His signature combination of humor and gloom culminate to depict the struggle of a man’s inner turmoil between abandoning the dreams of his youth, and carving out a new path for himself in this world.

Wed 3/12 – Antiquiet Showcase @ Rusty’s/Outlaw Roadshow – 5:30PM (405 E 7th Street) *
Thurs 3/13 – Audiotree Showcase – STREAMED LIVE @ Licha’s Cantina (formerly Papi Tinos) – 5:40-610PM (1306 E 6th St.) ^
Sat 3/15 – Copy Cats Showcase – 5:00-5:40PM @ Blind Pig – (317 E. 6th Street) %
Sat 3/15 – SXSW Official Showcase @ 1:30 – 1:50AM 512 Bar (408 E 6th Street) $

* = w/ Nicole Atkins & Ume
^ = w/ The Hood Internet & Psalm One
% = w/ Sol & Astronautalis
$ = w/ Sage Francis & B. Dolan

Lazer/Wulf:

Formed in 2008 in Athens, GA, among indie- and math-rock contemporaries, Lazer/Wulf is an experimental metal trio that’s easy to get behind, but hard to peg. It’s instrumental but with flashes of distant vocals, a jazz collective with thrash roots, funk players with sludge issues, or a prog band reeled in by a satisfying hook. Every cathartic fit backs against a tense silence. Whatever it is, it’s useless to describe. Just imagine L/W as a trampoline rigged to explode: it’s fun for just about anybody, but likely to kill them at any moment.

The band announced today that Retro Futurist will be releasing their debut full-length, The Beast of Left and Right.  They’re circling a May release.

3/11 The Lost Well, Austin, TX
3/12 Wonderland, Austin, TX
3/15 Red Eyed Fly, Austin TX

Male Gaze:

Male Gaze is a trifecta of bad vibes from the dudes that brought Blasted Canyons, Mayyors and The Mall. Sheets of fuzz, feedback peeking out the corners, and a B+ Ian Curtis impression dress these diet pill pop tunes in your favorite sweater from 1996. Records to come, and a teaser of some demos for their upcoming release on Castle Face:

http://superchief.tv/unpiano-male-gaze/

3/14 – @ Hotel Vegas (Castle Face Showcase), Austin
3/15 – @ The Owl (Castle Face party show), Austin

Megafauna:

As the title to Austin trio Megafauna’s sophomore album Maximalist might suggest, it’s optimistic, expansive and unabashedly over-the-top; an endeavor to take music to its utmost potential. The band’s supercharged mixture of sounds ranging from prog-rock flash to alt-rock iconoclasm to pithy power-pop and garage rock energy is as infectious as it is inclusive. Megafauna paves their own hook-laden path — much like the Pixies and Queen, who taught the world that even the most unusual pairings of styles can result in unforgettable and eternal classics.

Maximalist was mixed by legendary engineer Tim Palmer (U2, Pearl Jam, David Bowie; recently featured in Tape Op Magazine) and recorded with Dwight Baker (Blue October, Bob Schneider) in Austin. Maximalist will be available on LP, CD and download on April 15 via Danimal Kingdom.

03/11  Austin, TX @ Guero’s (Future of Indie Showcase)

03/15  Austin, TX @ Shiner’s Saloon

03/16  Austin, TX @ Danimal Kingdom Party

September Girls:

September Girls arrive in Austin this week for SXSW in the wake of their new album Cursing The SeaCursing The Sea, the debut album from Ireland’s September Girls, is a dark kaleidoscope of echoey drums, buzzsaw bass, angular guitars and reverb-drenched vocals that blends garage rock and post-punk to extraordinary effect.

Named after a Big Star song via The Bangles, September Girls are comprised of Paula (Bass/Vocals), Caoimhe (Guitar/Vocals), Lauren (Keys/Vocals), Jessie (Guitar/Vocals) and Sarah (Drums). Drawing inspiration from the likes of Phil Spector, The Velvet Underground, The Cure, My Bloody Valentine and The Jesus And Mary Chain, the five-piece play reverb-soaked noise-pop of the finest order, with distant layered harmonies, swirling organ and distorted guitars once described as “sounds from a transistor radio abandoned in a rural cinema.”

Cursing The Sea is out today through Fortuna POP!

March 13 – Austin, TX – Austin Psych Fest Presents: Levitation Austin – Hotel Vegas, 1500 E. 6th St – 9:30pm

March 14 – Austin, TX – Music for Listeners Party – El Sapo, 1900 Manor Rd – 2pm

March 14 – Austin, TX – Full Irish Breakfast – BD Rileys, 204 E. 6th St – 4pm

March 15 – Austin, TX – Waterloo Cycles Party – 2815 Fruth St – 4pm

March 16 – Austin, TX – Panache Booking Hangover – Beerland, 711 Red River St – 2pm

Sweet Cobra:

Prolific Chicago noise-rock three-piece Sweet Cobra has just announced the completion of their upcoming new album Earth set for release this summer on a label still to be announced.  Recorded by Matt Talbot (Hum) and Kurt Ballou (Converge) at Earth Analog Studios in Champaign, IL (mixed by Kurt Ballou at Godcity Studios Nov 2013), the new album follows the band’s previous full-length album Mercy released in 2010 on Black Market Activities.

In addition to the upcoming full-length, the band is announcing a series of smaller releases, including the Young Widows / Sweet Cobra “Live at Three Floyds” Split LP (out April on Hawthorne Street, art by David M. Cook), and Sweet Cobra / Get Rad “Split” 7? out later this month on Hawthorne Street, Lifeline, and Underground Communiqué Records.

03/11 Austin, TX @ Spider House (Texas Is Funny & Better Days Will Haunt You SXSW Showcase) *
03/12 Austin, TX @ The Annex at 1808 (Ground Floor Booking Unofficial SXSW 2014 Day 1)
03/13 Austin, TX @ The Grackle

Topshelf Records:

Boston’s Topshelf Records has announced the lineups/schedules for their Unofficial SXSW Party and Showcase, happening Wednesday, March 12 and Thursday March 13, respectively.

Check out a teaser video here. More details below.

Topshelf Records SXSW Party (unofficial)
Wednesday, March 12, 2014
6pm – 2am
21st Street Co-op (707 West 21st Street, Austin, TX 78705)
All ages, free.

6:00 – 6:25 – Foxing
6:40 – 7:05 – Duck. Little Brother, Duck!
7:20 – 7:45 – Caravels
8:00 – 8:30 – Diamond Youth
8:45 – 9:15 – Donovan Wolfington
9:30 – 10:00 – Special Explosion
10:05 – 10:35 – Bob Nanna
10:40 – 11:10 – Joliette
11:15 – 11:45 – No Somos Marineros
12:00 – 12:30 – You Blew It!
12:45 – 1:15 – Prawn
1:30 – end – Empire! Empire!

Topshelf Records SXSW Showcase (unofficial)
Thursday, March 13, 2014
11am – 6pm
Soho Lounge (217 East 6th Street, Austin, TX 78701)
18+, free.

12:00 – 12:30 – Special Explosion
12:45 – 1:15 – Donovan Wolfington
1:30 – 2:00 – Frameworks
2:15 – 2:45 – Wild Ones
3:00 – 3:30 – Diamond Youth
3:45 – 4:15 – Prawn
4:30 – 5:00 – Caravels
5:15 – 5:45 – You Blew It!

Warm Soda:

Warm Soda (aka. Matthew Melton) has done it again! Just when it seemed as though he’d reached the pinnacle of power-pop confection with last year’s excellent Someone For You, he’s topped himself with his latest masterpiece Young Reckless Hearts. The unlikely addition of cello only serves to bitter-sweeten his teenage pop fantasias, the hooks are deviously barbed to lodge themselves into your memory, and the production (done himself at his Fuzz City Studios in Oakland) is dimensional, technicolor, and wide-screen. This is the record to fall into and possibly out of love to in 2014. Out on Castle Face Records March 11 (tomorrow).

03.11 – Austin, TX – SXSW – Cheer Up Charlies – 01:00 pm
03.12 – Austin, TX – SXSW – Hotel Vegas – 10:30pm
03.13 – Austin, TX – SXSW – Trailer Space Records – 09:45pm
03.14 – Austin, TX – SXSW – Hotel Vegas – 06:30pm
03.15 – Austin, TX – SXSW – Hotel Vegas – 11:45pm

Zorch:

Austin, TX hyper-kinetic duo Zorch are knownfor playing shows numbering in the double digits every year during SXSW — in 2011 they played 19 times, in 2012 they played 20 times during the event. So, it may be surprising that they’ve scaled back this year to a comparatively sane nine sets during this year’s festival. The band’s full length debut Zzoorrcchh was released everywhere on CD, LP and download via Sargent House on July 23, 2013.

03/11  Austin, TX @ No Play Music at Cheer Up Charlie’s (4:30pm)

03/11  Austin, TX @ Official Showcase at The North Door (11pm)

03/12  Austin, TX @ Local Gold at Spider House (5pm)

03/13  Austin, TX @ SXSWendys at Chain Drive

03/14  Austin, TX @ Snax by Snax Wonderland at Wonderland (4pm)

03/14  Austin, TX @ Volcom Party at OK Mountain

03/15  Austin, TX @ Breakthru Radio Day Show at The Liberty Bar (4:15pm)

Qui
Qui

If the third full length by L.A. duo Qui sounds like a radical departure, you probably were never really listening properly in the first place. Sure, perfectly taut vocal harmonies and precise, sparse instrumentation supplants much of the band’s early fume-huffing punk-noise here, but their penchant for challenging, button-pushing ideas is stronger than ever. Qui also employed harmonies and experimental structures on their previous album Love’s Miracle (2007) with former vocalist David Yow (The Jesus Lizard). But, Life, Water, Living… is clearly the band’s most meticulously refined effort at using melody and harmony as subversive weapons. 

After a 5-year absence, Qui is once again back to the original duo formed in 2000 by drummer/vocalist Paul Christensen and guitarist/vocalist Matt Cronk. Life, Water, Living… features inventive song structures and warped pop sensibilities reminiscent of early Sparks and Frank Zappa with Queen-style harmonies… or something like if Badfinger were the Melvins. Throughout, it’s an album that subtly commands attention as it shifts from a soft whisper to a chuckle to a scream. 

Life, Water, Living… was released February 25 on LP, CD and download in partnership with Cobraside Distribution.  Ghettoblaster recently spoke with Cronk about the album, the departure of Yow, and who he’d like to collaborate with in the feature.  This is what he confessed.

It’s been around five years since we’ve last heard from Qui, can you tell us quickly about some of the other projects that have kept you busy since then?

In 2009, we played All Tomorrow’s Parties in Minehead, UK.  That was also the first of the Jesus Lizard reunion tour that went for the rest of the year.  During that time, Paul started a band called Help with Pete Lyman (Dumb Numbers, owner of Infrasonic Mastering) and Pete Beeman (Guzzard, Burning Brides).  I was dealing with some health problems and out of commission for a while.  Paul also began playing with his ongoing duo, Paulene.  They play bossa nova and classic country/western.

I know that Qui started as a duo, but did you ever have any hesitation in returning to the project without David?

Not really.  We were a duo for much longer than David was with us.  We released a record, toured, all of that.  Certainly, we got a great deal more attention with David in the band and that is not lost on us.  But when we began playing together again we talked about it, and talked it over with David and we all agreed that it was appropriate.  It’s not as though there is any acrimony between us.  In fact, David has done the artwork for our new record as well as couple other things.

How do you think the band is different now that you’re a two-piece again?

Well, there is one less guy on stage!  There is also one less guy involved in writing and arrangement.  David contributed a great deal to all the songs we wrote together.  What was so surprising and cool was that he fell in so easily with the way wrote; it was seamless.  I think what we are doing now is more dynamic in range than before, but that’s not to say we wouldn’t have done the same thing with David.

I suppose it is difficult for me to answer that objectively.  A third party might have a better slant on it.

Does it feel like more of a continuation to the work you had done before David got involved or would you think it falls in line with the entirety of the band?

Again, I may not be the best person to ask.  To me, it is all cohesive and makes sense.  On the record we did with David, there was plenty of ensemble singing, quiet passages and so on.  On the new record there is plenty of noise and dissonance.  We have always done that.

How did the two of you reconnect? Was there an initial intent in wanting to do a new album?

We were in touch throughout our inactivity.  Once I was back on my feet we got together and made some noise and found we still enjoyed it.  For about a year, we just got together regularly and wrote songs.  At that point we had no agenda beyond that.  Once we had a batch of songs, and were feeling good about the whole thing, we decided to make a record.

Can you talk a little about how the songs on Life, Water, Living came about? Are you both still based in LA and able to meet and rehearse new ideas or did you have to use digital means to get the frameworks together?

Yes, we’re both in LA and have a practice space where we rehearse.  When we started writing what would become the new record we hadn’t played in a few years and had tons of song ideas and riffs floating around in our heads.  So we just started hashing them out in the practice room.  It was a lot of fun.  While there was no grand design, we did feel that since there was no one waiting anxiously for us and no gigs booked, we could stretch out a bit and play with some ideas we had about the sound of the band.  As much as we absolutely love the record we did with David, we didn’t want to try to do the same thing again.  We aren’t really interested in being beholden to a specific sound or scene like, “noise rock,” or “stoner metal,” or whatever.  I find that really boring.

There’s definitely a lot going on stylistically with Life, Water, Living – do you think there are any songs or ideas here that might have surprised you back when you started the band?

Yes, I suppose so.  Songs like, “Whateryadoin,” and “Awkward Human Interest,” weren’t really my speed back then.  The rest of it I think I would have been quite pleased with.

Can you talk about how you ended up partnering with Toshi and Dale for the recording of Life, Water, Living?

We had known them both for years and Toshi had always expressed an interest in recording us.  Prior to this record we had done almost all of our recording with Pete Lyman at Infrasonic and had a good working relationship with him.  In the time we were inactive he had stopped engineering, sold his recording studio and began  mastering full-time at his new Infrasonic Mastering.  I liked the production Dale and Toshi had done for Tweak Bird so I called Toshi to see if they’d be into doing it.  After checking their schedules we booked the time and off we went.  The entire experience of making the record with them was wonderful for start to finish.  We look forward to working with them again on the next one.

I know the album is being released in partnership with Cobraside, but it is a self-release, right? Is there any reason you decided to go this way?

The deal we have with Cobraside is for production and distro.  They handle all of the manufacturing and distribution to retailers.  So they are doing a big chunk of what a traditional label would do.  However the day-to-day nuts and bolts stuff we do ourselves; mailings, PR, filling internet orders.  It’s a fair amount of work but we enjoy it.  As for why we chose to go this way, of the options available, it was by far the best.  Prior to our deal with Cobraside, we spent a year signed with a label run out of Warner Bros.  It was not a subsidiary, but a boutique label run by Warner’s staff with Warner’s distro and a few other perks.  It was, by and large, a very disappointing experience that, after a great deal of bullshit, yielded very little.  They did release our split 7” with Mike Watt, and for that we are grateful.  Their operations manager is a great guy and was a pleasure, but the owners of the company jerked us around for a year before we just bailed.

When we started talking to Cobraside they were enthusiastic about our record, yet very pragmatic.  There was none of this, “kid, we’re gonna make you a star,” nonsense.  They explained how and what they could do, we felt comfortable with them, and that was that.  So far they have done everything they said they would do and have been nothing but a pleasure to work with.

Do you think you’d consider working with another third member for Qui? Is there anyone that you’d particularly like to work with? Maybe let’s just restrict it to living folks – heh.

Absolutely.  We are always game to try things like that.  As for a wish list of collaborators, I could go on all night.  Off the top of my head, Mike Watt, Marc Ribot, any former member of any lineup of Capt Beefheart’s Magic Band, Shannon Selberg of the Cows.  We have done a little writing for female voices and would love to do more of that.  We would both like to write for large orchestral ensembles and strings.  It would sure be neat to play with a Melvin or two.

Really, anyone with something interesting to do or say could be fun.  We’re game for whatever.

(Visit Qui here: https://www.facebook.com/quiband.)

Sleepers Work (aka William Flynn)
Sleepers Work (aka William Flynn)

Sleepers Work is the alias of Brooklyn-based multi-instrumentalist William Flynn who has toured with St. Vincent, and has worked with Acrylics, Aufgang, and others. No Turn Before The Shoreline is the first full length release from Sleepers Work which shows off his moody, ambient R&B. The album’s out March 11 via Primary Records.

The record release show is tomorrow at Bossa Nova in Brooklyn, with SHRAF and Joel Ford.

This week, Ghettoblaster has the pleasure of streaming the album.  Check it out here:

No Turn Before The Shoreline
No Turn Before The Shoreline

The Flips
The Flips

Debut albums are a tough lot. Sometimes bands who’ve self-released a few EPs try to crank out (and, in effect, stretch out) more of the same formula that came before, somehow hoping for a different result or even recapturing the magic of their first recordings. Others aim for cookie-cutter hits, and still more experiment a bit in an attempt to stand out.

Chicago’s The Flips have been generating a tremendous buzz since the release of their Damn You & Damn Me Too EP, and with the A Harm Deep But Shining LP the band are more caustic and harmonious than ever.  Quiet/loud dynamics burst into audio explosions, and vocalist guitarist Nick Sintos tempers punk agitation with memorable harmonies.  The young, but confident quintet emerges with a sound fit for fans of Foo Fighters, Say Anything and Manchester Orchestra.

Ghettoblaster recently caught up with Sintos to discuss the full-length album, which dropped in November 2013.  This is what he said about the writing and recording process.

When did you begin writing the material for your album?  

We began writing for our full length album A Harm Deep But Shining immediately after we recorded our first EP Damn You & Damn Me, Too. It was pretty instant. As soon as the EP was pressed, I began writing new material instantly.

What was the most difficult song to take from the initial writing stage through recording and mixing?  Why was it so troublesome?

I would have to say “Casino” was the hardest to finish in the writing stage.  That sounds awful to say, because when you listen to it, it sounds so simple with the same chords over and over.  The problem with playing the same chords for the verses/choruses/interludes you sort of get lost in the structure.  So the key to that song had to be rely on dynamics mostly, and when to play soft and when to go all out.

Which of the songs on the record is most different from your original concept for the song?

Well, most of the songs I write begin on the acoustic guitar. Or, we will maybe jam on a guitar riff or a chord progression initially, and I’ll go back to the acoustic guitar. I will come to the band with a pretty complete song.  I tend to have an idea as to how it should sound full band in my head, and everyone usually gets there without me even saying anything, So all that being said, the song “Racing Stripe” would have been the most different. I brought it to the band, and we started to really make it into a full band song. Then on another day  when I wanted to practice it with them, I was accidentally playing it in the wrong time signature, but half way through the song I realized what I did and switched back. For the longest time, I couldn’t wrap my brain around it, but we ended up recording it that way.

Did you have any guest musicians play or sing on the record?

Nope.

Who engineered, recorded, mixed and/or produced the record?  What input did those people have that changed the face of the record?

We tracked the record with Alex “Excel” Cruise and Mike “Rocka” Gamon from The Jungle working as engineers in Chicago. They were really great for putting up with my bad playing. It takes me a while to get comfortable in the studio, and those guys were very efficient in their jobs as to not have me wasted time and money.  Adam Instefjord from the band Lights Alive (Chicago) mixed our record.  We consider him a good friend, so we really valued his opinion. He knew what we wanted in terms of the album not sounding TOO overproduced, yet just polished enough.  I was able to learn a lot from him as far as how mixing works.

Is there an overarching concept behind your new album that ties the record together?

This record is about going from my early 20s to my late 20s and really having to “grow up”. Dealing with the person you used to be, and the person you are becoming, and the person you want to be. Struggles with my faith is also common throughout the record. I just waited to make an honest and sincere album.

Have you begun playing these songs live and which songs have elicited the strongest reaction from your fans?

Yes, we’ve been playing some of these songs live for a while now.  “Casino” seems to be the fan favorite live. Even if a show hasn’t seemed to be going our way in terms of a fan reaction, once we get to “Casino”, people start paying attention. That’s become our closer at shows. It’s big and mean and I just love how it ends so abruptly and we all look like insane people on stage.   It’s a great “fuck yeah exclamation point” at the end of a night.

(Here is a live performance from a recent Chicago show at the Beat Kitchen:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cd00a1azY0Q

Visit them online here:

facebook / twitter / bandcamp / youtube)

 

Breeder
Breeder

Austin, TX progresive / experimental quartet BOYFRNDZ emerge with their second full-length record Breeder.  Self-produced by the band and engineered/mixed by Erik Wofford (Maserati, The Black Angels, White Denim), Breeder sees the group further expanding their meticulously constructed hypnotic sound into new realms of colorful, energetic and emotional territories. 

Impossible to pin a label to, BOYFRNDZ seamlessly merge hook-laden, reverb soaked vocals with swirling guitar melodies and complex rhythms.  Breeder is an impressionistic journey that is a laudable entry into the pantheon of 21st century musical evolution.

Ghettoblaster recently talked to Scott Martin (vocals / guitar) about their writing process, concepts, and recording processes for Breeder, which drops via Brutal Panda on April 1.  This is what he told us.

When did you begin writing the material for your most recent album? 

Early last year, I think. It’s kind of hard with us.  By the time we’ve finished writing any of our records we’ve usually already begun working on a new one. We’ve already got three or four new ones in the works for a follow up to Breeder now. The process just kind of keeps going.

What was the most difficult song to take from the initial writing stage through recording and mixing?  Why was it so troublesome?

Probably “Design”. It was one of the few we finished the week before we went into the studio, and it’s just long, and we had to get all of the dynamics down on the spot pretty much. Recording typically isn’t a very arduous process for us, though. We usually have our shit together. We did this whole record in about five days, which was the longest session for us to date.

Which of the songs on the record is most different from your original concept for the song?

Surprisingly none. It’s always during an improv session with Aaron (Perez), we’ll fall into an idea and we both usually know when it’s something we’ll want to cultivate. We’ve been working this way long enough that our musical communication and partnership is really strong, there’s not a lot of second guessing. Maybe there should be.  But for now, I don’t think so. It’s a very organic way of writing. I’m incredibly thankful to have the chemistry I have with Aaron, Joseph (Raines), and Jesse (Moore). Fingers crossed we get to keep it for a while.

Did you have any guest musicians play or sing on the record?

Not on this album. This is just the four of us. Jesse really came through with the keyboard and piano work on this record.

Who produced the record?  What input did that person have that changed the face of the record?

We produced this record ourselves. Erik Wofford, our engineer, certainly has a strong opinion in studio. He is, if anyone, a kind of phantom producer. But we arranged and wrote and knew what we had in mind all before even stepping back into Cacophony.

Is there an overarching concept behind your new album that ties the record together?

Not Intentionally.  Like I mentioned before, our writing is constantly evolving, there’s not a point where I just sit down and muscle these out as a cohesive unit. Each song has its own individuality. The title, Breeder is just a reference to the point in life I feel the four of us happen to be in. We’re all in our late 20s, early 30s, and all around us people are having children, and it’ supposed to be the most important thing you can do when you get to this age. It’s frustrating how normal the idea is…like it’s ultimately what we’re all expected to be when, for us, these records we work on are our children. I’d say there’s a general frustration with humanity in a lot of the lyrics on the record. I didn’t plan for that, it’s just what came out, I guess.

Have you begun playing these songs live and which songs have elicited the strongest reaction from your fans?

We have. We’ve played most of them, anyway. These days set times still hover around the 40 minute mark so we can’t play everything we want. Hoping on this upcoming tour to get to do a little longer sets, so that we can really dig in, take our time and show people what we can do. I think people really get down to “Burn Through It”, and “All at Once”.  But, who knows. It’s a blur.

(Visit Boyfrndz here: www.boyfrndz.bandcamp.com and www.facebook.com/boyfrndz.

Catch the band on tour here:
March 7-16 – Austin, TX @ SXSW Music Festival
March 20 – Albuquerque, NM @ TBA

March 21 – Salt Lake City, UT @ The Shred Shed

March 22 – Boise, ID @ Treefort Music Festival

March 23 – Boise, ID @ Treefort Music Festival

March 25 – Seattle, WA @ Chop Suey

March 26 – Portland, OR @ Holocene

March 27 – Oakland, CA @ TBA

March 28 – San Francisco, CA @ Bottom of the Hill

March 29 – Los Angeles, CA @ The Mint

March 30 – Phoenix, AZ @ Last Exit

April 2 – Houston, TX @ Warehouse Live

April 3 – New Orleans, LA @ Gasa Gasa

April 4 – Baton Rouge, LA @ Spanish Moon

April 5 – Atlanta, GA @ 529

April 6 – Greensboro, NC @ House Show

April 9 – Philadelphia, PA @ Kung Fu Necktie

April 10 – Brooklyn, NY @ St. Vitus

April 11 – New Haven, CT @ Panty Haus

April 12 – Pawtuckett, RI @ Machines with Magnets

April 13 – Montreal, QC @ Bar TRH

April 15 – Hull, QC @ Le Troquet

April 16 – Toronto, ON @ Izakaya

April 17 – Detroit, MI @ PJs Lager House

April 18 – Chicago, IL @ The Beat Kitchen

April 19 – Lawrence, KS @ The Jackpot Saloon

April 20 – Oklahoma City, OK @ The Blue Note)

Get Pure
Get Pure

Amid the current industry of cool, Mount Carmel’s lack of gimmick is a welcome anachronism. The Columbus, Ohio-based trio’s third album Get Pure is full of swagger, packed with great songs and inspired performances. This is true rock music like you haven’t heard in years. Crank it up!

Mount Carmel’s Get Pure will be available on CD, digital formats and limited edition vinyl on March 25 through Alive Naturalsound Records.

Today the band have shared a track from the record with Ghettoblaster.  Mount Carmel frontman Matt Reed had this to say about “Gold”:

“I was heavily into gold jewelry at the time. I liked the dueling ideas of being paranoid to the point of suicide, while at the same time caring about nothing other than materialistic/physical needs (women, gold, etc.) It’s that simple really. A kind of identity struggle. A man at the mercy of his vices. Nothing new. The verse riff is just one note. The chorus as well. Very simple. The opening line “you ain’t talkin bout nothin” is the author referring to himself; an immediate acknowledgement of the lack of substance to come.”

Enjoy it here:

Born with a Scorpion's Touch
Born with a Scorpion’s Touch

Calabrese are possibly one of the underground’s biggest bands you’ve never heard of. A blend of horror rock meets rockabilly, sometimes dubbed gothabilly, the trio hails from Phoenix, three brothers whose love of comics, dark movies, and music led to becoming professional musicians. Their recordings and compilations number in the dozens. Their influences include The Misfits, Black Flag, Black Sabbath, Samhain, The Damned, Danzig, and Ramones. Rad, right?

That’s why Ghettoblaster caught up with the band prior to their March 11 release of Born with a Scorpion’s Touch via Spookshow records.  This is what Jimmy Calabrese said about their record.

When did you begin writing the material for Born with a Scorpion’s Touch?  

I believe we started writing the songs for the new album after we released our previous album in July 2013. Then in January 2013 we laser focused our songwriting because we hit the studio in May 2013. For us that’s a very short time to write songs since our past experience was to write and record an album every two years.

What was the most difficult song to take from the initial writing stage through recording and mixing?  Why was it so troublesome?

We really didn’t have a difficult song this time. We did have a tough time figuring out the best way to mix the whole album. We had a specific sound we were after and it’s not always easy to put sounds into words so it took much debate and frustration to get the first base mix done but once that was figured out the rest of the mixing was easy.

Which of the songs on BWAST is most different from your original concept for the song?

That would be “There Is An Evil Inside”. The original concept for the song was for just guitar and high hat for the entire song with vocals over those two instruments. Luckily we played that song at a show while we were still working on it. The song was a hit but a few close friends told us they liked it but they felt the song should keep building. So by the time we hit the studio we had something worked out that would lead to the build up, but we knew it would be tricky to pull it off just right, so we told Bob in the studio what we were after and he knew how to add all the elements for a nice clean build that the song called for.

Did you have any guest musicians play or sing on the record?

Bob Hoag sang some backup vocals and a local band Fairy Bones ended up singing the gang vocals on “Mindwarp”, along with our friend and engineer Gerald Schoenhherr (who both happen to be in the studio that day).

Who produced the record?  What input did that person have that changed the face of the record?

Bob Hoag produced and engineered the record. Instead of changing things he added musical elements like harmonies and piano parts. Like a master chef he only added a few herbs and spices to bring out the natural taste of Calabrese.

Is there an overarching concept behind BWAST that ties the record together?

The main themes behind Born With A Scorpion’s Touch are motorcycles, rebellion and the occult. We tried to channel all the loners, rebels and restless youth of the world and give them their own soundtrack.

How do the songs differ when you play them live?  I understand you head out on a new tour in March, what are you most looking forward to?

We usually play the songs faster and louder when we play them live. When the crowd is sizzling and the electricity is in the air it’s hard not to amp up the songs!

For the upcoming “I Wanna Be A Vigilante Tour” in March I’m really looking forward to playing SXSW, and HorrorHound Weekend because those are unusual shows, but I love every show because it give us a chance to meet the people who make our dreams come true – our fans. Hope to see you out on the road!

(Visit Calabrese here: http://www.calabreserock.com/.)

 

Grey Gordon (photo by Chris Noltekuhlmann)
Grey Gordon (photo by Chris Noltekuhlmann)

Last Spring, No Sleep Records announced the addition of emerging singer-songwriter Grey Gordon to the label’s eclectic roster.  Gordon released his third EP, Still At Home Here, via No Sleep on May 28

Hailing from Fort Wayne, IN, Gordon got his start performing as a solo act in July of 2011. After a string of demos, he recorded his debut EP, Outgrowing Hope, which he released as a free download for fans.  Over the next two years, Gordon continued to build a name for himself with additional free demos and eventually a follow-up EP, Sleepless, in 2012, which caught the attention of No Sleep president Chris Hansen.

The heavily tattooed singer identifies as vegan and straight edge, which both factor into his musical ideology, along with topics ranging from depression to more overtly political content. He draws influence from artists such as Kind of Like Spitting, Elliott Smith, Superchunk, and a large contingent of the Midwest emo movement of the 90s.

When Ghettoblaster discovered he’d be in our stomping grounds of Dayton to support JT Woodruf (of Hawthorne Heights) as Woodruff releases his solo album Field Medicine, we got Gordon on the horn to talk about his own output.  This is what he shared with us about his music, tats, being straight edge and vegan, and Gucci Mane.

Are you still living in Fort Wayne?  Do you think the Midwest is a good breeding ground for musicians and artists?

Yeah, I’m still posted up in the Fort. There’s an interesting dynamic there for artists. On one hand, living expenses are exceedingly cheap, so it’s easier to sustain oneself. On the other, it’s something of a cultural vacuum. It’s hard for anything especially intellectually challenging to thrive there. It wasn’t always like that, but the Internet has changed a lot of things. It’s a tough question, man. Fort Wayne is home. I’ll say that.

Did No Sleep catch wind of you via the free download of Outgrowing Hope, or had you met Chris somewhere along the way?

I sent a copy of Sleepless to them right after I finished it in January of 2012. Had a brief interaction with Chris, but nothing beyond that. I slowly started playing with more bands on No Sleep, Run For Cover, etc., and I think somewhere along the line, Chris noticed. He hit me up for my number via an Instagram post and I was on the label within a month. That was about a year ago.

What catalysts or influences led you to an understanding of veganism and straight edge that made it appeal to you as a lifestyle?

There’s no short answer, but I’ll give the shortest possible. Basically, I came up with my pops listening to hardcore music. By the age of 12 or 13, I was pretty much an avowed leftist. As time went on and I dug deeper into hardcore, hip-hop and leftism, I saw these ideas consistently espoused by people whose words I really respected. In time, it became clear to me how veganism and straight edge were the logical extensions of my preexisting ideas about the world. They now stand as some of the most integral facets of my identity.

How does being vegan and straight edge impact your musical ideology and identity?

It influences literally every aspect of my worldview, and my songs are written from my perspective, so those ideas are definitely present in my songs. They express themselves in a ton of different ways, sometimes overtly, sometimes subtly. People seem to be very aware of my political stance, and I’m thankful for that. I think we live in a time where people are put off by the idea of taking a firm stance on something. I’m sure there are people who hate how vocal I am about my worldview, but that’s ok. I’d rather alienate someone with honesty then endear myself to them disingenuously. That being said, people are people and many of my friends aren’t vegan or straight edge by any means. I hope people understand that at the end of the day, I’m not a blind zealot.

Although tattoos aren’t as taboo as they once were, people still call face, neck and hand tattoos “career killers”, which lends me to believe that they aren’t as widely accepted or understood as people make them out to be.  Do you think people are surprised when a singer songwriter of your ilk shows up so heavily tatted?

People are definitely taken aback, yeah. I think it’s pretty funny, honestly. I get that it’s unorthodox for a “tough” looking dude to be singing songs with an acoustic guitar in his hand. That being said, yeah I have Hatebreed hand tattoos, but it doesn’t mean I’m not a multifaceted person who experiences the world similarly to everyone else. Yeah, I mosh like a dick at hardcore shows sometimes, I listen to tons of Gucci Mane, but I’m a human being and I experience the entire spectrum of human emotion like anyone else.

Were you pleased at the way people responded to your first three EPs?  Did any criticism change the way you thought about the record?

People reacted really well to them. By and large, the response was overwhelmingly positive. Any criticism seemed to be from people who either don’t like acoustic music (which I can’t blame them for) or people who thought some of the lyrics were a bit sophomoric (which they were at times). All in all, I’ve grown immensely as a person since I started this project, and my songwriting is growing along with it I think.

Will you be doing multiple dates with JT Woodruff?  How did this opportunity present itself?

We’ve talked about it, but nothing’s set in stone. It’s gonna be a busy year for both of us. JT just shot me an email saying that he was into my stuff and was stoked on us both being straight edge. We talked and he eventually asked me to play his record release. I’m stoked to do it. His solo stuff is cool and he’s such a nice dude. I sincerely hope we get a chance to do more dates together.

Have you been to Dayton before?  If so, what do you remember about your previous trips?

I’ve been, but never played. Honest to god, I can’t remember the last time I was there. Maybe for a hardcore show? It’s getting to the point where I travel so much that I’m starting to forget where the hell I’ve been. I think I remember liking it, for what it’s worth. Ask again after I play there with JT, and I’ll tell you what’s up.

Have you begun writing or recording for a full-length, or can we expect another EP in the not-too-distant future?

I’m actually writing this in the car on the way to the studio just outside of Olympia, WA right now. I’m up here for ten days recording my full length. We’re tracking guitar overdubs today. I couldn’t be more psyched on this record. Ben Barnett from Kind of Like Spitting is producing it, and it’s sounding insane. All full band stuff recorded to tape. It’s a total departure from what I’ve released thus far. I hope people are ready for a loud indie rock record.

(Grey Gordon performs with JT Woodruff at RockStar Pro Arena in Dayton on March 21.  Also on the bill are Front Porch Step, Before Their Eyes, The Lost Boys, and Rambo. Keep up with Gordon at https://www.facebook.com/greygordonofficial.)

Grieves
Grieves

Seattle rapper Grieves returns to deliver his fourth studio album, Winter & The Wolves, on Rhymesayers Entertainment. The insatiable, devil-may-care MC is well known for his meticulous exploration of life, love and loss, through a unique medley of hip-hop and soulful music. Together with B. Lewis, Grieves created 14 new tracks, combining organic pianos and guitars with boisterous synthesizers, to paint a colorful backdrop for his unique blend of rapping and singing.

A reflection on growth and maturity, Winter & The Wolves is about the instinctual fight for survival. It’s about suddenly finding that you’re all alone, facing countless hindrances to your livelihood, and having the courage to overcome them all. Tackling difficult obstacles like addiction and heartbreak, Grieves wrestles with the realization that life doesn’t get any easier as you get older. His signature combination of humor and gloom culminate to depict the struggle of a man’s inner turmoil between abandoning the dreams of his youth, and carving out a new path for himself in this world.

Winter & the Wolves will be supported by full North American and European tours, with a re-developed live show including expanded band and light performances. But first Ghettoblaster caught up with him to discuss the record.  This is what he told us while stranded in a b-rate “Chucky Cheese”.

I would like to start this interview off by telling you that I am currently sitting in a place called John’s Incredible Pizza Company (van broke down and this is the only place around). It’s more a less a rip off of Chucky Cheese and there are fat little kids running around screaming with pizza all over their chubby little faces while I sit here drinking a beer like a complete and utter creeper.

With that said…. Let’s do this

When did you begin writing the material for your most recent album?

I sat down to write Winter & the Wolves in late 2012, but really didn’t hit my stride until 2013 when I finally had the time and the state of mind to write a record like this.

I was writing and producing songs in Seattle and wasn’t really happy with how things were going until I met B. Lewis. Once I started booking flights to San Jose and going out there to work with him is when things really started to fall into place.

What was the most difficult song to take from the initial writing stage through recording and mixing?  Why was it so troublesome? And which of the songs on the record is most different from your original concept for the song?

I took a different approach to this record. Every song that Brad and I did was made from scratch and molded as I wrote. By the time we had vocals printed a song would have been transformed 100 times over, BUT it wasn’t even in post production. All these ideas and changes would happen as I was sitting on the couch behind him writing. It was a really cool process for me. I’ve never done that.

With that said, there is a song called “Death of Me” on the iTunes Deluxe version that went through a wild transformation.

Back in 2011, Budo and I sat down and wrote this song called “look at what you’ve done”. It ended up shelved until 2013 when a buddy of mine, Chords, came out from Sweden to work with me in my studio. We took that song (because Chords and I both loved it and wanted to see it reborn) and completely re-did it.  We started first by finding out the key of the song and then stripping away the music completely. We then started building the music around the vocals and a simple drum loop to help us keep the groove. At this point Winter & the Wolves was nearly complete so we had a good idea of what direction to take it and how we wanted it to sound.

After a few days of mixing pianos, finding the perfect guitar tone, riffling through drum sounds, and eating shitty deli sandwiches from the Fred Meyer across the street… We finally had a composition I think both of us were really happy with. Unfortunately the hook from the previous version really didn’t match the vibe so I re-wrote the hook and re-tracked all the vocals to match the music. It took a while but I’m happy with the outcome (and that was just for the process for the demo).

Did you have any guest musicians play or sing on the record?

I don’t really do a lot of features on my records that much but I do try to get one or two to keep things fresh.

On this record I finally got to team up with my buddy Slug (from Atmosphere) on a song called “Astronauts”. We’ve been looking for the right song for a whole so it’s was really exciting to finally find the right match.

As far as musicians go, B. Lewis and I  did a lot of the ground work for the record and then we had some piano and string players come in and add some extra wow to some of the tracks.

Once the record was recorded and almost done, I actually went into Avast Studios in Seattle with my buddy Jake Shaw (keyboard player on tour) and replaced all the VST pianos with live pianos. I’ve always wanted to do that so it was a cool experience to be able to finally give it a shot.

Who produced the record?  What input did that person have that changed the face of the record?

B. Lewis and I co-produced this record. There is a beat from Sapient that both Brad (B. Lewis) and I loved called Recluse, and the bonus song on the iTunes Deluxe version that I mentioned earlier that was produced by Chords.

I met Brad through one of my favorite bands, Bad Rabbits. They had worked with him on their new record American Love and had nothing but praise for him.

I had never worked with a producer like Brad before. I’ve worked with beat makers and Budo, but I’ve never worked with someone who front to back will sit down with you and help you achieve a feeling and space for a whole entire record. I think this was the writing/recording experience I was looking for.

Is there an overarching concept behind your new album that ties the record together?

Yeah, but I like to leave that open for interpretation as well. For me, this record is about endurance and overcoming. I’ve had a really rough past two years and when I sat down to write this record I wanted to touch base on the idea that life doesn’t just get better because I get older. Happiness and calm water is something that you have to reach for.. It’s not gonna just fall in your lap cause you’re “grown”.

That’s just me though. I’d love to see what others get from it.

Have you begun playing these songs live and which songs have elicited the strongest reaction from your fans?

I have! I’ve been playing “Shreds”, “Whoa is Me”, “Astronauts” and “Kidding Me” live and they’ve been going over really well. I would say “Shreds” and “Kidding Me” are the favorites with “Kidding Me” probably coming in first. It’s a super dope feeling to see people dig into something they’ve never heard before. Got me pumped to release this Muh Fuckah!

(Catch Grieves live here:

European Tour Dates
4/9/2014 London, UK @ Oslo
4/10/2014 Birmingham, UK @ Hare & Hounds 2
4/11/2014 Manchester, UK @ Soup Kitchen
4/12/2014 Paris, FR @ Nouveau Casino
4/14/2014 Brussels, BE @ Rotonde
4/15/2014 Munich, DE @ Muffatcafé
4/16/2014 Berlin, DE @ Cassiopeia
4/17/2014 Hamburg, DE @ Mojo Jazz Café
4/18/2014 Frankfurt, DE @ Zoom
4/19/2014 Aarhus, DK @ Atlas
4/20/2014 Copenhagen, DK @ Pumpehuset
4/22/2014 Oslo, NO @ Sawol
4/23/2014 Stockholm, SE @ Nalen

North American Tour Dates
4/4/2014 Mesa, AZ @ CycloMesa
4/29/2014 Portland, OR @ Branx
5/1/2014 Reno, NV @ Knitting Factory
5/2/2014 San Francisco, CA @ Slims
5/3/2014 Los Angeles, CA @ Roxy
5/4/2014 Santa Ana, CA @ Constellation Room
5/5/2014 Tucson, AZ @ Congress
5/6/2014 El Paso, TX @ Tricky Falls
5/7/2014 Albuquerque, NM @ Sunshine Theater
5/9/2014 Durango, CO @ Animas City Theatre
5/10/2014 Denver, CO @ Ogden Theatre
5/13/2014 Austin, TX @ Stubbs Jr.
5/14/2014 Dallas, TX @ Cambridge Room (HOB)
5/15/2014 Oklahoma City, OK @ The Conservatory
5/16/2014 Lawrence, KS @ Granada
5/17/2014 St. Louis, MO @ Firebird
5/19/2014 Columbia, MO @ Mojos
5/21/2014 Cincinatti, OH @ 20th Century Theatre
5/22/2014 Columbus, OH @ The Basement
5/23/2014 Chicago, IL @ Subterranean
5/27/2014 Omaha, NE @ The Waiting Room
5/28/2014 Rapid City, SD @ Sports Rock
5/29/2014 Billings, MT @ The Carlin
5/30/2014 Jackson, WY @ Pink Garter Theatre
5/31/2014 Salt Lake City, UT @ In The Venue
6/1/2014 Boise, ID @ The Reef
6/2/2014 Spokane, WA @The Bartlett
6/7/2014 Seattle, WA @ The Showbox

For more information, visit:
www.rhymesayers.com/grieves
Grieves on Twitter
Grieves on Facebook
Grieves on Instagram
Rhymesayers on Twitter
Rhymesayers on Facebook
Rhymesayers on Instagram)