Monday, May 30, 2011

EXCLUSIVE! Morning After Girls INTV!

With a name like The Morning After Girls, you cannot help but chuckle and say to yourself, "well, let me hear what they sound like," from juvenile laughter to an immediate serious reaction, you straight away realize that this band is not joking around. Forming in 2003 in Melbourne, Australia the pyschodelic rock outfit have gone through various line up changes, shape shifting sounds and various styles before landing on their feet and finding what they are made of. They relocated to New York City in 2008 and have been generating the buzz that had them on their home turf now overseas and in the land of American dreams. As the band released their latest album, Alone, earlier this year, we caught up with singer and guitarist Martin B. Sleeman about how the band has evolved, their dynamic sound and curious name. Take a look at our interview with Martin below.

The name of the band is instantly recognizable and fun to see and hear, who came up with it?

The name of the band came up with us. I'm not attempting to be intentionally cryptic, but honestly, we have long been staunchly opposed to the western world's fascination and reliance on pinning a name to anything. We prefer to think of most things as being transient in description, rather than locking you or ourselves as viewers, into a set "idea". Why take away from anyone the freedom of interpreting anything in any way they desire? It contradicts the beauty of our existence. So, it's up to you.

With such a trippy and unique sound, how did it come about that you would create the style of music that you do?

It's a feeling, a chemistry that began between myself and sacha, and an extension of what any human being experiences when they deal with life, death, loss, relationships, vulnerability, exultation, nakedness, continuing without seeing, loving without knowing. Life.

Hailing from Australia and being very successful back home, you relocated to New York City in 2008. Did the change of atmosphere change your style and sound?

Well, if you're talking about Alone, we wrote, recorded, mixed and produced the album before moving to New York, so no. Regardless though, I don't think that it has, although since we have been so blessed to have Alex White, EJ Hagen and Anthony Johnson join our family, Sacha and myself have certainly never felt better about the band. As far as New York City is concerned, i think there are certain changes that occur within your soul that manifest themselves through every way you express yourself. Myself and Sacha have always been very focused and aware of where we are and where we've come from, and what is present in our journey, both individually and communally whenever we have been writing. New York has an energy that get's inside of anyone that has a heartbeat. If you allow it to, it can be a mirror, a deflection, and a reflection of everything a person can love about themselves and life itself.

In saying the same thing about our music, then indeed, New York, like any environment , will effect our art.

Are you still in New York?

Yes. I have been fortunate enough to live for a while with our bass player EJ in Lancaster, PA, which has been a blessing as i've met some of the finest people i know there.
Sacha is in New York, as is our Keys player Alex and our drummer Anthony.
So in short, i guess we work from New York.

Many Australian bands such as yourselves, Tamrama, Violent Soho, The Grates have relocated to New York at some point, what is it about this city that has attracted Ozzies to it?

I wasn't aware that there was any level of correlation between Australian Bands and New York City.

I'm not really aware of these bands, so i can't answer for anyone else but myself and my band.
As far as myself and Sacha are concerned, we were always going to move to New York. As individuals, we've known for a long time that it's an environment that fosters everything we love about the human existence. We've met some beautiful people, developed some treasured freindships, played to wonderful attentive audiances, and met one of our closest friends, Cevin Soling, who has been responsible for our record gaining a physical release.

Australian music has broken very big internationally with acts like those listed above, Wolfmother, Pendulum and others. Do you feel that this is the most important time to be in a band from Australia? Are you proud to be apart of this?

No I don't really. I don't feel that it's important to be anything else but the morning ater girls. Everything else is sort of irrelevent.

Myself, sacha, EJ, Alex and Anthony, are the most important things about this time of me being in a band.

We've been through a hell of a lot over the past few years, and if ever I was to feel pride, it's for the fact that we are together making art; the only art we know best.

Your latest record, “Alone,” was released earlier in the year. How do you feel about it?

It's the greatest art that Myself and Sacha have ever created. It's the culmination, summation and execution of a journey that is unique to us but also common to every human being.
That said, during and after the completion of a record, there are so many filters that one's feelings can go through which in turn effects how you feel about the record. I've gone through many different feelings about this record; the depths and heights have no bounds. And now that we've had Alex, EJ and Anthony joining us since we re-located, my feelings about the record have grown/shifted/changed again, and i must say, those three souls are the most welcomed gifts to our journey so far.

How does “Alone” waiver in comparison to your other material?

Waiver? I don't compare one piece of art to another, they're all isolated moments in time. I will say that sacha and i were both feeling very explicit and acute effects of life, while we were creating alone. that difference manifested itself very noticably for us, and because we were quite aware of this, we were able to be more raw and vulnerable with ourselves and our music than ever before.

What does the title of the record signify?

I think the more curious thing is the fascination to describe every single facit of every single particle of life until there is absolutely no mystery in anything. Isn't the essence of beauty something which defies description? I get concerned that there is too much much safety sort and found in an answer (no matter what it is) rather than simply sitting and observing the many questions that give us the freedom to have our own mind, our own thoughts, our own reality, our own love, our own beauty, living our own life. alone.

It took about five years in between albums for you to release a full album of new material, what took so long?

There are many reasons, most of which have absolutely nothing to do with the art of making music. Before we began Alone, myself and sacha had material for the next two albums at least, but unfortunately there was so much beurocracy surrounding the conflict btween our choices and the choices of those we'd entrusted to assist us in our journey. We were making significant changes to our band and our lives. And we never, ever, rush the creation of our albums. It remains the most sacred and pure pursuit in our lives. Also, to be crude, when you leave the country that you've spent most of your life in, to reside in a country that has rather strict immigration policies, it can take a long time to try to coincide the production and eventual release of a record.

What did you do in the time between albums and recording singles? Did you get other work outside of the music world or just toured and wrote as much as you could?

We toured a lot for a couple of years, in the US and the UK, living in London for a period of time. We are always writing, always recording. After we found oursleves back in Australia, we began doing pre-production for alone, rehearsals, and recording. Then we flew to London to mix it with Alan Moulder, and after which, prepared for our relocation to New York.

Your live sets have also gained you much attention and it has been said you never play the same set twice. Is it hard coming up with a set list each night as to what want to play?

Not really. We need to be stimulated. Who knows how we will change, but often we won't arrive at our final setlist until moments before playing. This can be a little frinetic for some poeople, but i think it certainly influences the energy that we share with our audiance every time we play. And that's the most important thing - to share what is immediately within our souls at that very moment, in the most honest way possible with the people we care most about, our audience.

The Cars on Fallon!

Legendary 80's band, The Cars are back together with their original line-up for the first time in 24 years! The band just released their latest, Move Like This and performed the new single "Blue Tip," and "Let's Go," take a look!

Getting Closer with Peter Hook

Take a second and remember the first time you heard Joy Division. Remember the power and curiosity it had over your ears and emotions. Remember that prior to that band and after, you never heard anything like it before or since. Formed in 1976 during the punk explosion in England, the Manchester quartet of Ian Curtis, Bernard Sumner, Peter Hook and Stephen Morris started playing a much more darker, subtle style of music then what was out on the scene, yet they still managed to call themselves a punk band. Joy Division put Manchester’s music on the map and pioneered a sound that would be copied for decades. Though the band’s timeline was short lived after singer Ian Curtis committed suicide over 30 years ago, their legacy remains timeless. From the ashes of Joy Division, the remaining members formed New Order and took the 1980’s and 90’s by storm. While New Order called it quits in 2007, all of the remaining members have been keeping themselves busy, Sumner and Morris started a much more straight forward rock and roll band with Bad Lieutenant, while Peter Hook has been working on his own music as well as taking Joy Division’s classic albums Unknown Pleasures and Closer on the road. Just this month, Hook and his band, The Light which features his son on bass, will perform Closer for the first time ever in full, at a benefit concert in Manchester.

In a very candid and gracious phone interview with Hook, we discussed his roots as a musician, Joy Division and New Order’s legacies and his career today as he preps for the Closer gigs. When Hook and his friends were coming of age, Manchester was almost entirely an total industrial city, filled with factories and blue collar workers. Music and art did not seem to flourish in harmony with the factories the way it does today. Hook says “When I started, there was no scene, not that I was aware of, because my interest in music was strictly pop. It was only after seeing the Sex Pistols, that I developed an interest in music and then discovered the scene in Manchester, which seemed to me to be inspired by Sex Pistols.” It was at that gig, where he asked school friend Bernard Sumner to go, where they both realized they wanted to be in a band. “I was into heavy metal, Led Zeppelin, Deep Purple, you were reading about these people and this other world all the time and then the Sex Pistols started to sneak in to the music press. I remember one occasion where I was on holiday in the South of England, buying Melody Maker and it was the picture of Johnny Rotten fighting at a gig on the front. I thought, well that seems more like real life, because you never saw Robert Plant fighting, they seemed more grandeur and this seemed more street and more earthy and more realistic.” After that holiday, Hook saw an ad in Manchester Evening News that the Pistols would be in town for 50p at Manchester Free Trade Hall, it would be at that gig where his and Bernard Sumner’s lives would change. When I asked Hook if that 50p was the wisest investment he had ever made, he laughed and replied, “well, yeah, along side the 35 Pence which was for my guitar, which I bought the next day. Those were probably the best investments I have ever made and there are not that many.” After placing an ad out in local papers looking for a singer, a man named Ian Curtis, which the guys had known from school, fit the bill as the band’s front man.

Starting off originally as Warsaw and pulling in influences from punk, David Bowie and Kraftwork, the band changed their name to Joy Division. “Punk did give me a very healthy and tenacious attitude to life, it really did,” Hook told me about his love of the genre. While the band would take the UK and then the rest of Europe by storm with their passionate live shows and music, it was a gamble that would see them become one of the most talked about bands of their time and of all time. “In those days, it was not money, it was about wanting to succeed in something you believed in, because it was a hell of a struggle. The interesting thing about Joy Division and their years together is that it was not soiled by money or fame or anything like that, we were literally a jogging group who were doing a very difficult job because we believed in it.” The band would bend and break the rules of conventional music, not just in style and sound but in how they released their music. “When we did get ‘Top of the Pops’ for instance, it was a way of showing the people who didn’t know what you were doing, what you were doing!”
The band did not play by the rules that the major labels had set forth in those days. For instance they did not put their singles on their albums, and everything was sold separately. This was the way of their label, Factory records and owner Tony Wilson. “In those days, it was us and The Clash who would not put the singles on the LP’s. We did not want the fans to buy them twice because it didn’t make sense. In the way that the industry works, particularly in America, if you release an album in America and do not put the single on it, radio station in those days would not play it. We used to take great delight in the bloody mindedness of doing things like that, you were really rallying against the system.” In a time when decadence and material items were at the forefront of everyone’s mind, Joy Division wanted to just make music. “They did have a different way of looking and doing things which was not the most obvious, which you soon learned it was much more rewarding, sort of being awkward if you, than playing the game. The great thing we had in our arsenal was fantastic music, when you got fantastic music, you can do anything you like,” Hook says about Wilson and how he ran Factory records based on the success of Joy Divisions counter culture intonation. While the band were bound for glory and intercontinental success, Ian Curtis, who had famously battled epilepsy, would take his own life on the eve of the band’s much anticipated first American tour.

From the ashes of Joy Division, came New Order. “When Ian died, we just put Joy Division’s music in a box and just buried it. We never did anything about Joy Division, we never celebrated anything to do with Joy Division, it was an unwritten law that we would never talk about Joy Division and will never play their music.” Yet, Hook and his mates found opportunity out of defeat with New Order they were able to explore new wave, electronic and club sound rather than the textured and heavy tones set forth by their previous band. Though New Order may have released more records and stayed together longer, the impact of Joy Division seems to be much greater. “If Joy Division continued on, we would have probably ended up doing the same thing as we did with New Order and gone into more electronic sounding music. Don’t forget it was Ian that introduced us to Kraftwork!”

These days Peter Hook has been taking his latest band, The Light on the road around the world and bringing Joy Division’s albums to life again. For some, if not most of his audience, they are hearing Joy Division live for the first time. What was supposed to just be a one off gig in Manchester, it sprawled into a worldwide tour due to demands from fans and promoters alike. Just before he announced a full tour last year in support of the 30th anniversary of the band’s masterpiece, Unknown Pleasures; press, fans and even colleagues called Hook every disparaging name in the book. People accused Hook of living off the past; even going as far as saying he is “stealing from a dead man’s wallet.” Hook, just laughs it off. “You have to take it as a compliment or else it will drive you mental. There is nothing worse than being criticized in any way shape or form because it eats at you and makes you insecure.” His reason for plugging away and response, is simple, “I never had any idea that I would play anywhere apart from Manchester that one night (May 18, 2010), I have been asked to play all around the world and everywhere we have gone we have gotten a great reception.” Hook’s justification goes even further by saying “after 30 years of denying Joy Division, to actually get the music back.” With The Light, Peter Hook recruited a member who was born to play with him, his son Jack. After witnessing the show myself in New York last December, one thing is for sure; Jack is a monster bassist and has a long life in the music business ahead of him. Now as Peter Hook preps Closer for a special Manchester gig, he is realizing how difficult it is to sing in Ian’s shoes. “Whilst I have been rehearsing Closer, I have discovered that Closer is much more difficult to sing than Unknown Pleasures. I never expected that for one minute and I must admit, that whilst we have been rehearsing Closer, the feel of Closer is much more intense and much more melancholy and I am wondering about the reaction to it.” Peter Hook and The Light along with special guest Rowetta of Happy Mondays will perform Closer in full for the first time ever in Manchester exactly one year after Hook debuted Unknown Pleasures in full with The Light.

After a tour this fall, Hook will have a lot on his plate. Working on his original music and pondering the next step, he would like to bring some New Order material on the road, but says that page has yet to be written. “I am very lucky to still be out as a jobbing musician and play the music I wrote 33 years ago, it’s a hell of an accolade and I enjoy it very, very much. It does make you wonder what old musicians are supposed to do.” As for Joy Divisions legacy and his impact on Manchester, Hook says, “as a group we were very insular and we did things for ourselves, and I know that sounds a bit naïve but it’s true. You were doing things because you believed in it and doing it for no reward, it is quite an odd thing, it wasn’t even about surviving, it was about playing your music to your people.”

A version of this article, written by Officially A Yuppie owner - Salvatore Bono appears on UK's The Spectator - Night and Day website, take a look HERE.

Arctic Monkeys Live on Letterman!

While in town for the week, Arctic Monkeys dropped by Late Show with David Letterman to perform "Don' Sit Down or I Will Move Your Chair," off their forthcoming Suck it and See album which is due next week. Watch the band's awesome performance and hear Dave joke about the band's album title.

Quick News

Do you follow Coldplay on Twitter? If not, you should start. While the band have been gearing up for their headline appearances at various festivals this summer including Glastonbury, Lollpalooza and Austin City Limits and not to mention they have been hard at work on a new album, they have been very cryptic about info on the new disc. The band has tweeted various sounds that could be intro music to a new single as well as various sayings that some are speculating are lyrics. We cannot confirm any of this will be used for new music, but it is worth keeping an eye out for.

Rufus Wainwright is enlisting the help of producer and music wonder boy, Mark Ronson for his forthcoming album. Rufus is planning to make a much more "poppier" sounding album than he has done in the past.

Brazil's CSS will release their third album, La Liberación in August and the band have confirmed that Primal Scream front man Bobby Gillespie will lend his vocals to the song "Hits Me Like a Rock."

Liam Gallagher spoke to MTV News recently and said that his new band, Beady Eye will return to the studio in February of 2012 and will be packed with "great anthems and epic tunes." Gallagher, whoes band is on tour in small clubs will be going for a sound to shoot back into arenas.

Florence and the Machine are working on their second record and singer Florence Welch told Nylon magazine that the album and writing sessions are about the grateful departed. She says ''A lot of the songs on the new album are about imaginary things, things that you can't touch: ghosts and rumours, my dead grandmother, things visiting you in a dream." The album is set to be released in 2012.

New York City indie dance rockers The Rapture are returning from a five year hiatus! The band recently resigned with James Murphy's label (and The Rapture's first label) DFA and will release their new album In The Grace of Your Love in September.

Dave Grohl's former band, Scream will release a seven song EP recorded at Grohl's Studio 606 on August 16 via SideOneDummy records.

RIP Gil Scott-Heron

Poet, singer, activist - the world lost one of the greats on Friday as the legendary Gil Scott-Heron passed away at the age of 62 in New York City. Scott, who famously said "The Revolution Will Not Be Televised," had influenced so many with his socially conscious words and actions. Though the cause of death has still yet to be determined, his health has been at the forefront since he told New York Magazine in 2008 that he was HIV positive. He was hospitalized recently after feeling ill after returning from a recent trip to Europe.

An outpouring of emotion and condolences have come across from the whole music industry from Cee-Lo, Eminem, Radiohead, Snoop Dogg, Ghostface Killah, Chuck D, Usher and many more all paying tributes via Twitter or their respective websites. Gil Scott-Heron recently received critical praise after his album and collaboration with Jamie xx of The xx We're New Here was released earlier this year.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Live Review - Arctic Monkeys / The Vaccines @ Central Park

There is something to be said about outdoor summer shows, the weather is the main attraction rather than the artist, but that is what makes for the adventure and adds to the ambiance of season. The forecast called for heavy rain and thunder storms and the only thing that arrived was heat and humidity, Mother Nature allowed two great British bands to bring the thunder and the storms. Arctic Monkeys along with The Vaccines opened up the summer concert series in Central Park last night to a sold out crowd that was ready to let loose and have the time of their lives. After packing in clubs and arenas since last summer, to be outside again on a beautiful night was an inclination that everyone in attendance was starting off their summer right.

Starting off the night was new sensations The Vaccines. The Vaccines are a London band that are giving the rock community a big shake and stir as everyone that has heard the band has immediately fallen in love with their catchy hooks and raw rock and roll delivery. This is the second time the band has played New York City; we were on hand for their very first show at Bowery Ballroom in January, and the biggest audience they have played to in North America prior to the festival season. For thirty minutes, those that have fallen in love with the band enjoyed and hung on every second, for those that never head the band were instant fans. That is the brilliance of their live shows; it is a fun good old fashion rock and roll gig. Toward the end of their set, singer Justin Young told the crowd “We were hear in January at Bowery Ballroom playing our first New York gig and it was a great show. That night we covered a song originally done by The Standelles but we really love the Minor Threat cover, so ladies and gentlemen please welcome from Minor Threat – Lyle Preslar!” The legendary hardcore guitarist joined the band for “Sometimes Good Guys (Don’t Wear White)” and had the audience in shambles over the sight of the guitarist with this new band, what was much more shocking was this is the first time Preslar has played the song live since Threat broke up in 28 years ago. It was a moment that immediately raised the bar for what was to come for the rest of the night.

After the brief but brilliant thirty minute set from The Vaccines and a thirty minute intermission, Arctic Monkeys took to the stage to show New York City how much they missed and love the city that never sleeps. Opening with the brand new track “Library Pictures” off their forthcoming album, Suck It and See, it was clear that Alex Turner and Co. were ready to party. The momentum kept going with the blitzkrieg versions of “The View from the Afternoon” and “Brianstorm,” the heat inside the fans area and on stage was blistering but enjoyable. With that many bodies crammed into one area and hoping around like pogo sticks in unison, cleanliness and hygiene are forgone for simple enjoyment. “New York City, we have a good moon tonight, it is going to be a good night” singer Alex Turner said before jumping into “This House is a Circus.” As the momentum kept rising during the first four songs, what then became apparent was the amount of time soon after, the band was wasting changing instruments and tuning. They would bring you up with the music and then bring you down as they reset themselves. It would be the only criticism of the night and if that is the case then they just need to tighten up for the future shows. As the band focused on songs from their last record, 2009’s mixed received Humbug and the big hits off their first two albums, they showcased enough new material off Suck It and See for fans to get a taste of what it will sound like. From what they played off the new record, it is the perfect avenue and feel of a young band maturing, it is a hybrid of all their previous material with somewhat of a heavier feel. The album arrives next month, so we will have to wait and see what the rest of it sounds like but if this any indication, they are going in the right place.

The Vaccines Rumsey Playfield Setlist:

Under Your Thumb
Blow It Up
Wreckin’ Bar (Ra Ra Ra)
All In White
A Lack Of Understanding
If You Wanna
Post Break-Up Sex
Good Guys Don’t Wear White (with Lyle Preslar)

Arctic Monkeys Rumsey Playfield Setlist:

Library Pictures
The View From the Afternoon
This House Is A Circus
Still Take You Home
Don’t Sit Down ‘Cause I Moved Your Chair
Pretty Visitors
Teddy Picker
Crying Lightning
She’s Thunderstorms
I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor
Potion Approaching
Brick By Brick
If You Were There, Beware
Do Me A Favour
The Hellcat Spangled Shalalala
When The Sun Goes Down
Fluorescent Adolescent

*Photo by Leah Marchesano.

Yeasayer on Conan

Yeasayer perform their brand new song "The Devil and the Deed" on Conan. Take a look!

Live Review - Dillinger Escape Plan @ Music Hall of Williamsburg

Dillinger Escape Plan Live at Music Hall of Williamsburg 5/15/11
By The Rock(jock)*

Hey all you Yuppies, ROCK(jock) here. My friends tell me I'm subject to overblown hyperbole every once and a while (all the time). While I try to be as objective as possible when posting reviews here, sometimes my intense love for a band just won't allow it. That's why, instead of telling you what I thought about Dillinger Escape Plan's show at the Music Hall of Williamsburg, I will do something a little different and simply list a series of events that took place. In the end, YOU decide how the evening went.

Williamsburg -- I want to move here. It's still the city (there's a beautiful view of Manhattan in the distance) and it has no shortage of things to do (unmarked dive bars that turn into unexpectedly classy establishments once inside with very fair prices, obscure beer selections, and better food than anything in Queens) and yet it feels like another world. Despite it being very old, it's infinitely cleaner than the other boroughs and eerily quiet. Add in the waterfront and laid back air, it feels like you're on vacation.

The Music Hall -- The intimacy of the Webster Hall basement, slightly smaller than Irving, and the decor of Bowery Ballroom. A beautiful balcony with plenty of seating (including stadium risers), three bars, decent sound, ample cooling fans to keep it from becoming a sauna, and most importantly...NO BARRICADES. (This is called foreshadowing).

The crowd -- I recently started asking myself the question, "Am I too old for this shit?" after a series of shows that made me feel like a cranky old man but the audience of mostly twentysomethings at the Music Hall renewed my faith in New York's concertgoers. The show wasn't sold out, so everyone had their own personal space--more casual fans could chill in the balcony or side risers, rabid fans could enjoy the show up close without getting sucked into the pit, and the moshers had lots of room to put on their own show. Even better, it was the type of pit where people just wanted to go a little nuts and have fun rather than the increasingly common gathering of steroidal muscleheads looking to prove how tough they are.

The chaos -- Honestly, when your fellow concertgoers are as awesome as Sunday's group, watching this spectacle is one of the best things about seeing Dillinger live. Chaos has a beauty and it's manifested at these shows. Case in point (here comes that foreshadowed stuff): the mosh pit...ON THE STAGE. Shows with no barricades and no security always make for a better time. Why? Because by and large, metalheads are a smart and responsible tight-knit group that looks out for one another. When big brother is watching, people take that as a license to not worry about those around them. But when left to police ourselves, I have yet to see anyone get hurt or things get out of hand. Not to mention it gives bands like Dillinger, who breed violence and feed off the energy of their fans more than most bands, a chance to interact directly with the crowd and take things to the next level. Like join the pit on the floor. Sure, some lead singers will journey into the audience once in a while but how often do you see the entire band, save the drummer, spread out across the entire venue? Hell, at one point I turned around to see Jeff Tuttle on the raised floor behind me (which, if you're familiar with the layout of the Music Hall, it's mind-boggling as to how he got there). And I haven't even mentioned the ubiquitous crowd-surfing and stage-diving, which came to a head during "Sunshine the Werewolf" when half the venue (including yours truly) bum rushed the stage and attacked Puciato, who performed the last two songs under an avalanche of raucous fans. The tech guys had to come out and form a human wall around the drums to keep the on-stage pit from moshing itself into the equipment. Even better, the whole thing turned into a game of King of the Mountain as we all tried to push each other off while maintaining our own position. Recess finally came to end when Puciato launched into "43% Burnt" and everyone on stage simultaneously jumped off. It was a sight to behold with bodies flying every which way as the crowd pig piled onto the venue floor.

The set list (courtesy of --
Farewell, Mona Lisa
The Mullet Burden
Panasonic Youth
Milk Lizard
Chinese Whispers
Room Full of Eyes
Sugar Coated Sour
Gold Teeth On A Bum
Black Bubblegum
When Good Dogs Do Bad Things (Faith No More Cover)
Good Neighbor
Sunshine the Werewolf
43% Burnt
Fix Your Face
Destro's Secret

Again, don't take my word for it. But if you don't trust me, maybe you'll listen to the all-mighty Greg Puciato himself. Upon leaving the stage following the main set, Puciato yelled into the mic, "I fucking love every single one of you after tonight" before proceeding to drop the mic and walk off. Then, at the end of the pandemonium that became the encore, while shirtless, sweat-drenched, and still fighting-off fans while simultaneously shaking hands with everyone he could reach, Puciato could be seen mouthing the words "Greatest fucking show of all time" over and over. Whether it was or not is up to you but there's no disputing we all had a blast that night.

*The Rock(jock)is Kyle Andrukiewicz, he is a contributing writer to Officially A Yuppie. He has covered Volbeat and Glassjaw for the site and continues to be our loud rock guru.

Bon Iver on Fallon

Kanye West friend and lo-fi all star Bon Iver dropped by Late Night with Jimmy Fallon to discuss his new album and perform a rendition of Bonnie Raitt's "I Can't Make You Love Me" and Donny Hathaway's "A Song for You." Take a look at the interview and performance.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Live Review - Glasvegas @ Bowery Ballroom

It has been nearly two years since Glasgow band Glasvegas have played the United States. In that two years the band have recorded a new album, lost their original drummer - Caroline McKay, gained a new one - Jonna Löfgren, bassist Paul Donoghue has lost some teeth, guitarist Rab Allen got some tattoos and singer James Allen nearly lost his mind. Allen, a man who looks like Joe Strummer but wears his heart on his sleeve like Ian Curtis is usually dressed in all black to symbolize the band’s moody tone, but now he is in all white – literally. Dressed in head to toe white denim jacket, white jeans, white sneakers and a white Beatles Help cut off shirt, Allen is symbolically showing off his own rebirth and cleanse. After battling drugs, heartbreak and the perils of fame, Allen and his band have penned a beautiful and sweeping album - Euphoric /// Heartbreak \\\ which was just released in the US this week.

Just before Glasvegas took to the stage, it was very easy to notice that this is going to be a different band and different set than fans have been accustomed to. For starters, James’ mic was connected to a long rope light that added a bizarre but beautiful ambiance, the band’s gear looks brand new and this is the first stop on their US tour, so anything special can happen. Taking the stage at 10pm sharp and walking out to the lead track off Euphoric, “Pain Pain, Never Again” before grabbing their instruments and jumping right into the Scarface inspired “The World is Yours.” The band’s “Wall of Sound” meets U2 stadium style sound hits you immediately. James Allen’s pain and passion can be felt deep in your bones as he belts out the stories of his life into the microphone as the emotion would bring him to his knees. Allen used to play guitar in the band, now he is just taking the stage as a full on front man, just him and his microphone. As the band plowed through a slew of new songs including “Euphoria, Take My Hand” and “Shine like Stars,” James would talk to the audience, in his thick Scottish accent, about how his life has changed. “I used to be a member of the working class, I used to write songs about Blue Collar people, I was one of them, now I am not anymore, so I do not write those songs anymore” before breaking into “Lonesome Swan” off the band’s stellar 2008 debut. While the new songs would rouse the audience, the biggest and best applause would come from the now infamous material off their first record. As this was indeed the first stop on the band’s US tour, James welcomed his close friend Geraldine to the stage, the woman who inspired the band’s biggest hit to date, “Geraldine.” Closing the first set with the anthem, “Go Square Go,” the audience would only beg for more. The Allen cousins, Rab and James would walk onto the stage to perform a ballad and minimal version of “Flowers and Football Tops,” a song that has managed to bring grown men back in the UK to tears. It a beautiful rendition of the epic song, the rest of the band returned to close out the show. For an hour and fifteen minutes Glasvegas proved that if you have seen them in the past, you have not seen them before. This is a band breaking down the walls of every club they play and are ready for arenas.

Opening the show was New York City band The Dig. The Dig have just returned back home after a long tour of the west coast and are linking up with Glasvegas for all of their North America dates. The Dig have been generating a very strong buzz and seem to be everywhere these days, if you are headed out to any gigs over the summer, chances are you will be seeing this band and they are worth seeing. We have covered them a few times in the past as they opened for As Tall as Lions in 2008, Editors in 2009 and recently for BROTHER UK, The Dig have always been a great band to see but last night opening for Glasvegas was the best I have ever seen them. With broken strings and wrists (bassist Emile Mosseri busted a string at the top of the band’s set and never replaced it and keyboardist / guitarist Eric Eiser is still recovering from an injury sustained at SXSW) – The Dig were simply on fire. Vocalist and guitarist David Baldwin looked like a bona fide rock star from the Bowery and was simply a delight to watch play. The fire The Dig are burning is now set ablaze in their live shows. They are a well polished rock and roll machine that needs to be seen and absorbed. As the band finished their 30 minute set, the audience was begging for more, chanting “One more song!” the band smiled as they broke down their gear. Soon, those chants of “one more song!” will happen during their headline gigs and guarantee, it will be headline gigs at Bowery Ballroom.


Making their US TV debut on Letterman last night, London's The Vaccines performed "If You Wanna" just a day ahead of their sold out gig with Arctic Monkeys in Central Park. Take a look!

Scott Weiland Covers Depeche Mode on Kimmel!

In support of his autobiography "Not Dead and Not For Sale," Stone Temple Pilots singer Scott Weiland hit up Jimmy Kimmel Live to perform a song that most would not expect - his cover of Depeche Mode's "But Not Tonight." Take a look!

Weiland originally sang the song for the 2001 film soundtrack to Not Another Teen Movie.

Sunday, May 22, 2011


I think I can speak on behalf of all music journalists and bloggers and say we love to pinpoint and categorize every music act around in a specific group. For a band like Jonquil, you simply cannot put them in any category, in fact they span multiple. At some points in their music it is free form jazz, psychedelic, prog, straight rock, electronic and even find ways to toss in hip-hop break beats in their songs. Jonquil are taking their love of all music and are making it all their own. The Oxford, UK band have been turning heads in the underground scene for a few years and are really breaking out now. In an interview with bassist and trumpeter Sam Scott, we discussed the band's style (or styles), Oxford and influence. Take a look.

Did you guys meet at Oxford or did you know each other before hand?

When you say 'at Oxford' I presume you mean the University, in which case, no we didn't, none of us work hard enough to get in. We're Oxford residents but the Uni isn't all that's here, most of what goes on there actually keeps itself fairly well hidden from the rest of the city. We did meet in Oxford, through playing in different bands on the local scene and drinking in the same places.

Hailing from Oxford with the legacy from that town and the band’s that have come from there – Radiohead, Coldplay, Foals, do you feel any pressure to uphold what it means to come from Oxford?

We don't feel any pressure to succeed because of the incredible achievements of Radiohead, they're a band in a league of there own; and we're good pals with Foals, they help us out whenever they can. We are certainly proud to be from a city that we love though.

Its a very exciting time in Oxford at the moment; a lot of our best friends have started making some amazing new music in bands like Pet Moon, Rhosyn and Trophy Wife. We've formed a sort of collective/community and try to support each other as much as possible, its called Blessing Force and is made up of a bunch of artists and musicians and you can find news and documentation here:

Coldplay aren't anything to do with Oxford.

You shared the same recording house as Foals as they recorded, Total Life Forever, what was that experience like? How are those guys?

I love Total Life Forever and I count myself lucky to have heard the songs from the very birth of the idea to the polished product. We occasionally had to turf them out of the basement where we both wrote and rehearsed when they over ran but it meant we all used much better gear than we do now.

As for personally, they're our best friends, when we're all in town together we can't get enough of each other.

You both record and play a style called “math rock,” what exactly is this?

Neither of our bands would describe our music as anything close to math rock anymore. Maybe about 6 years ago you'd hear us throwing the term around but no more. It was a Chicago scene that birthed it actually. Bands like Slint, Sweep the Leg Johnny and Don Caballero are math rock to me. Its rock music with funny time signatures.

There is what people are calling – “The Blessing Force Collective”– what exactly is this and how are you apart of it?

I suppose on Blessing Force I can add that Hugo and I both have solo projects that are part of the force: Hugo's is called Chad Valley and mine, Solid Gold Dragons.

With your unique style and sound, who are your influences?

We like to listen to artists that write brave and interesting pop songs so the major players are Talking Heads and Fleetwood Mac.

It has been said you have given yourself the self proclamation of “Paul Simon meets The Smiths” as far as your sound goes. Don’t you think that is a bit bold?

That was actually taken from a review and we thought it a huge compliment. Perhaps its still bold to proclaim regardless but I think to someone who has never heard our music it sells the sound pretty well.

There are a slew of magazines in the UK that are praising you and really putting you on the map, how do you feel about this? Do you feel any pressure to live up to what they have said about you?

In the UK, the press is very much geared towards promoting new bands and as we've been around for over 4 years it was a worry that our new songs, which we're very proud of, wouldn't get any attention. We do seem to be getting some interest though and its always nice to know people like our music. As for pressure, we've been touring these songs for around a year and the current set feels very natural so every time we play a show, its a joy.

How did you decide the name Jonquil?

Hugo was looking through a book of flowers at his parents's house, and the word Jonquil stuck out. It’s a type of daffodil.

You released an EP in the States, One Hundred Suns, will we be seeing a full length?

Yes, indeed, we've just started writing songs for a full length.

You have toured Europe relentlessly, where is your favorite place to play?

Berlin is always a great show, the city is so full of culture and the people seem to love seeing live music. We've also had a wonderful time playing in Poland, bands don't visit as often as countries like Holland and Germany so it becomes a real event when a UK band makes it that far east and it shows in the audience's reaction.

How do you feel about coming to the US? Is it a big deal for you to break here?

It is a huge deal, almost all of the music we listen to comes from America and it just seems to be the thing to aim for as a band from the UK. I can't wait to see the cities that I've read so much about.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Airborne Toxic Event on Letterman

Airborne Toxic Event returned to Letterman on Friday to perform "Changing" off their latest, All at Once. Take a look!

Fleet Foxes on Fallon

Fleet Foxes returned to TV Friday night to support their latest, Helplessness Blues on Fallon. Take a look!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Quick News

Since leaving The Cribs earlier this year, Johnny Marr is working on another Healers album. Speaking to Billboard, Marr said "I just want to write more than enough material to avoid ducking back into the studio to record a follow-up album." The Healers last record was 2003's Boomslang.

Clap Your Hands Say Yeah will return with their first record five years. The album, Hysterical will be out later this year.

Our Lady Peace are currently locked away in a studio recording album number eight. The band have been posting various videos online each week to see what is going on, head on over to to see what the Canadian rockers are up to.

Queens of the Stone Age are set to begin working on new material as soon as Glastonbury is finished this June. The band will record an album of new material for the first time in five years, this will be the follow up to 2007's Era Vulgaris.

Muse members drummer Dominic Howard and bassist Chris Wolstenhome spoke to NME about the follow up to 2009's The Resistance. They are aiming for a "softer" sounding record, the members said "Who knows, it might be softer rock, but then it's up to me and Chris to make it heavy again. A heavy rock lullaby! But I'm sure it will move forward in some way."

While Keith Richards is getting X-Pensive Wino's back together, Mick Jagger will not be sidelined. He is starting a supergroup with Joss Stone, Damien "Jr Gong" Marley, Dave Stewart and Oscar winning composer A.R. Rahman. The band is called Super Heavy, Jagger tells Rolling Stone "It's different from anything else I've ever been involved in. The music is very wide-ranging – from reggae to ballads to Indian songs in Urdu."Oddly enough the band got their start two years ago in Stewarts Jamacian home but are now going public. No announcement of an album has been made nor a tour.

Rammstein on Kimmel

It has been a long time since German industrial pyro heads Rammstein have been on American TV. They return to the tube on Jimmy Kimmel Live and literally exploded the stage performing their 1998 hit "Du Hast." Take a look!

Live Review - Deftones / Dillinger Escape Plan / Funeral Party @ Best Buy Theater

Live Review - Deftones / Dillinger Escape Plan / Funeral Party @ Best Buy Theater 5/14/11
By Rock(jock)*

After the performance the Deftones put on during their second night at the Best Buy Theater on Saturday, it would be easy to dismiss the opening bands as an afterthought. However, Dillinger Escape Plan's performances would never allow that and Funeral Party deserves at least a mention for feeling slightly out of place.

It was plain to see the crowd felt Funeral Party didn't belong but after listening to them, the more avant garde members of the audience likely saw how the band's sound complemented the experimental, sometimes synth-y elements of both Dillinger and Deftones. Their inclusion on the bill may have been peculiar but Funeral Party did enough to them on some fans' radars.

The Dillinger Escape Plan's live shows are so notorious that more than one person could be heard wondering aloud whether the band was a co-headliner. While DEP has experienced none of the mainstream success that would make such a possibility, even watching from afar, their performance left no doubt that they could share the stage with ANYONE. They easily rank among the best concert bands in the world thanks to a frantic energy with music to match that no other act can offer.

After Dillinger Escape Plan hopefully sent people scrambling to buy up tickets for their show in Williamsburg the following night, I spoke with another member of the audience who said he purposefully avoided seeing the Deftones for the past decade despite being a huge fan because he heard such bad things about their stage show. Whether that's true or not, I can't say, but his patience would be rewarded.

Deftones dispelled his doubts right out of the gate, launching into the title track of their renaissance album, Diamond Eyes. The band clearly wrote the song to not just open an album but to set the tone for their live shows. The chugging verses swoon into a sweeping choral hook, capable of engaging venues three times the size of the Best Buy Theater. The fervor only built as the Deftones whetted the crowd's appetite for classic material with two more songs from Diamond Eyes before launching into "Around the Fur." It's not like anyone missed the old stuff though. The band could've played the entire new album and left everyone happy. Not even midway through the second song the skeptical concertgoer glanced my way with the look of a man who's had his mind blown.

Even when things slowed down, the show lost none of its epic scale. The slow songs were communal masses. A calming, sensual energy generated by classics including "Be Quiet" and "Change" as well as new favorites like "Sextape" radiated from the band through the crowd to fill the theater with a peaceful aura, despite the blaring (yet well mixed and clear) sound system.

As the concert--which became more of a career retrospective--began to near the end, the first of the night's defining moments occurred. While many may have had this surprise spoiled by reviews of prior shows on the tour, nothing could tarnish the second to last song of Deftones' main set when the lead singer of Dillinger Escape Plan, Greg Puciato, came out and channeled his inner Maynard James Keenan to perform "Passenger." Delivering a performance that made you forget the original, Puciato and Chino Moreno redefined the way everyone in the audience will ever hear that song moving forward. Without actually doing anything differently than the Tool frontman and among all the many guests who have helped fill out this song live, Puciato made it unforgettably his own.

Finally, following a 20 song set that still somehow seemed all too short, came the perfect ending to the perfect concert. For the encore, the band chose two very old songs from their first release, performing them so well as to make one question why nu-metal ever died out. It was a full realization of what that genre truly could have been--smart, angst lyrics spit out with talent and flair set against the back drop of heavy melodies, powerful riffs, and galloping rhythms.

**Rock (jock) is Kyle Andrukiewicz, he is a contributing writer to Officially A Yuppie. He has covered Volbeat and Glassjaw for the site and continues to be our loud rock guru.


As May comes to a close and Memorial Day is around the corner, here are a list of jams we have been cranking. Enjoy!

- Pains of Being Pure at Heart - "Belong"
- Farflung - "Endless Drifts Wreck"
- Foo Fighters - "White Limo"
- Black Keys - "Howlin' For You"
- Theophilus London - "Strange Love"
- Adele - "Turning Tables"
- Innerpartysystem - "Die Tonight! Live Forever!"
- The Sounds - "Something to Die For"
- Gil Scott Heron and Jamie xx - "Home"
- Lupe Fiasco - "All Black Everything"
- TV on the Radio - "Will Do"
- Wolf Gang - "Lions in a Cage"
- Arctic Monkeys - "Brick by Brick"
- Thursday - "Past and Future Ruins"
- Cut Copy - "Need You Now"
- Beth Ditto - "I Wrote the Book"
- Everything Everything - "Photoshop Handsome"
- The Verve - "One Day"
- Beady Eye - "Four Letter Word"
- Social Distortion - "Another State of Mind"
- Youth Brigade - "Fight to Unite"
- Manchester Orchestra - "Simple Math"
- Soundgarden - "Pretty Noose"

Wednesday, May 18, 2011


The VaccinesWhat Did You Expect From The Vaccines?
Did The Strokes release an album this year? Of course they did and it was two months ago, its ok if you have forgotten it by now, it was nothing worth remembering. The reason I bring The Strokes up is that if youwere looking for the best record that band has not made – then look no further with London’s The Vaccines. This is a band we have been talking about non-stop. The have the garage and ethos vibe of The Strokes combined with the idea of what if Morrissey fronted The Ramones?Well, thatwould be the recipe and formula for The Vaccines. Their debut, is one of the years 10 best, easily. It is a raucous rock and roll record from start to finish and while the band is very serious about their music, it is a fun frolic of a record to indulge because the band are not taking themselves too serious. This is the record The Strokes wish they made and this is the band that everyone wishes they were in. Believe the hype, this is what you expected from The Vaccines.

Beastie BoysHot Sauce Committee Part 2
Cancer, age, and label issues – nothing is going to stop the legendary Beastie Boys from making great music. The band has been sidelined since 2009 with Adam “MCA” Yauch battling a form of throat cancer and causing the delay of Hot Sauce Committee Part 1, but that still does not mean the band would not take to the record waves once again. On the band’s latest release, though the sequel (part 1 has not come out yet, we know, confusing) it finds Brooklyn’s hip-hop trio discussing hip-hops current form (see “Too Many Rappers” with Nas), their age (see “Make Some Noise”) and still show a cheeky side of fun to it all. The Beasties do not feature any premier DJ’s on this album but mix it up with the band playing instruments and sampling at the same time, it is a combination of sound and fury from a band that have pioneered so much they can retire, but we are glad they are not.

Atari Teenage RiotIs This Hyperreal?
The Digital Hardcore pioneers and inventors return with their first album in a decade. Is This Hyperreal? see’s Alec Empire fronting a totally different Atari Teenage Riot than we have seen before, along with Nic Endo and new addition CX Kidtronik, ATR are back to tackle on the mainstream, politics and media. They hold nothing back and for that we thank them and for that we need them now. Is This Hyperreal? is a sonic punch in the bureaucratic faces of those who have diminished the middle class, lowered our standard of living and forced the world to flip upside down. This is the soundtrack to the modern age of revolution and a musical call to arms for the Google age. With songs clocking in at over 120 bpm’s and driving a force into your chest, Is This Hyperreal? is a full on sonic assault to all senses and fires on every cylinder.

Tyler, The CreatorGoblin
Face it, there is clearly no escaping Tyler, The Creator and the members of Odd Future. Though, collectively Odd Future seems to be as ironic and lewd as Dipset, Tyler, The Creator still has that bawdy persona but is more RZA than Cam’Ron. However, instead of the comparisons, Tyler shows off why heis the future of hip-hop. Goblin, the direct sequel to his much praised debut, Bastard, has him going off the rails and looking to just be himself and find himself at the same time. The record plays out more like a therapy session than a hip-hop album, starting off saying “I am not a fucking role model,” then later were hear him say “I am a fucking walking paradox” in his much loved single “Yonkers.” Tyler is clearly trying to shed his boyhood self and find himself in a business where it is very easy to lose himself. With all of the buzz, praise, controversy and backlash over Goblin, one thing is clear, the man knows how to get his point across. His lyrics and stories unfold with the autobiography of his life in the ghetto, love of skateboarding and being unforgiving to the father that left him behind. Phsycologists all around the world will classify Tyler as a depressed and confused soul, but when he puts his mic in hand and beats under his fingers, the boy becomes a man right before our eyes. A must listen, though clocking in at an hour and 14 minutes, it is a ton to injest.

UNKLEOnly the Lonely EP
The dark and moody electronic music staples return with an EP of just a taste of brand new music with help from Nick Cave, Gavin Clark, Rachel Fannan and Liela Moss of The Duke Spirit. It is only five songs but gives you the sampling that they are cooking something up big for us down the line.

Smith WesternsDye it Blonde
The Chicago rock band that mixes lo-fi, art rock and heavy riffing returns with their latest Fat Possum release. Dye it Blonde from Smith Westerns is a smart rock and roll album with a sometimes crisp and sometimes ultra fuzzy sound that is reason to believe the buzz around them.

Federico Aubele Berlin 13
Beautiful, romantic, charming and most of all sexy as hell; this is the best way to describe Argentine singer/songwriter Federico Aubele’s latest release. After spending much time in Berlin, Federico was inspired by the city and world around him, he created a record that is as intriguing as the city but still stays seductive to his South American roots. Combining flamenco guitars, electronic beats, hints of dubstep and jazz, Berlin 13 is the record you should find in every bedroom and café from Berlin to Buenos Aires.

Asteroids Galaxy TourThe Golden Age EP
Like Unkle, the Denmark dolls in Asteroid’s Galaxy Tour give us just a taste as to what they are truly cooking up. The Golden Age EP is a three song delight that really only leaves you wanting more. If you are a massive fan of the band, go out and get it to complete the collection, if not, hold off for a full length.

Company of Thieves - Running From A Gamble
The Chicago indie rock outfit returns and hope to create a bigger buzz and capitalize what they set forth in 2009 thanks in part to their great single “Oscar Wilde.” With Running From a Gamble, they can certainly do that and reach for the sky. It is a swelling and very big sounding album that pulls the listener in every direction possible. Singer Genevieve Schatz is a powerful voice to be heard and she shows off some muscle in the old boys game.

Art Brut Brilliant! Tragic!
The comical and clever English rockers return with their latest record, Brilliant! Tragic! The comic book loving and pun friendly Eddie Argos outdoes himself again with his smart lyrics and catchy hooks and the band is a stronghold to back the singer.

The Gift Explode
The latest endeavor from the Portuguese psychedelic DIY band see’s them fitting into today’s age of music now more than ever. They have been all the rage in Europe for over a decade and are new to some, but The Gift are something to treasure. This is a record for fans of Flaming Lips, Portugal. The Man and even has elements of Yeasayer and Phoenix in it. Though to old fans it will be a solid effort for new fans, it will be a worthwhile listen.

Cat’s Eyes
Farris Badwin of The Horrors teams up with opera singer and multi-instrumentalist Rachel Zeffira to create a record that sounds far from his main band but still sticks to Farris’ persona. That would be the point, right? Cat’s Eye's is a mysterious, dark, stark and surprisingly incredibly vibrant listen and though cannot replace what he has done in the Horrors, Farris does show off he can do it alone. For a one off solo project, it is worth checking out.

Architecture in HelsinkiMoment Bends
The indie favorites return with Moment Bends but seems to fall flat, the band seems to be abandoning the raw roots that have gotten them so popular through the years and going for a more clean cut, polished sound. Nothing exciting, nothing very

Joy Division / New Order Cover & Track Listing

Today marks the 31 anniversary that Joy Division singer Ian Curtis took his life on the eve of the band's first American tour. After Ian's passing, the three remaining members of Joy Division continued on as New Order. To commemorate both bands, on June 6, Rhino Records will release Total, a 18 song compilation of both bands including the never before heard New Order song "Hellbent." Take a look at the cover, above, and the track listing, below, as well as take a listen to "Hellbent."

01 Joy Division: "Transmission"
02 Joy Division: "Love Will Tear Us Apart"
03 Joy Division: "Isolation"
04 Joy Division: "She's Lost Control"
05 Joy Division: "Atmosphere"
06 New Order: "Ceremony"
07 New Order: "Temptation"
08 New Order: "Blue Monday"
09 New Order: "Thieves Like Us"
10 New Order: "The Perfect Kiss"
11 New Order: "Bizarre Love Triangle"
12 New Order: "True Faith"
13 New Order: "Fine Time"
14 New Order: "World in Motion"
15 New Order: "Regret"
16 New Order: "Crystal"
17 New Order: "Krafty"
18 New Order: "Hellbent"

New Order - Hellbent (Previously Unreleased) by Rhino UK

Death Cab for Cutie on Fallon

Death Cab for Cutie hit up Jimmy Fallon last night to perform "You Are A Tourist," off their forthcoming Codes and Keys record. The band also did a web exclusive for Jimmy and the gang, the performed the oldie and deep cut "Title Track" off their 2000 release We Have The Facts and Are Voting Yes.

Quick News

For their next record, Northern Ireland's Two Door Cinema Club are planning "stadium songs," says guitarist Sam Halliday as he spoke to earlier this week. He says "It's going [to sound] bigger. The first album's great in the sense that it's small pop songs that are fun and we don't want to move away from that, but at the same time you've got to progress." The band are currently on their world tour and will arrive Stateside again this fall.

Pearl Jam have announced that Labor Day Weekend will be the festival they have been planning and hinting on having to celebrate their 20th anniversary. The festival will take place East Troy, Winsconsin. The two day festival will include bands like Queens of the Stone Age, The Strokes, John Doe of X, Mudhoney, Social Distortion, Liam Finn, Glen Hansard, Joseph Arthur and more with Pearl Jam headlining each night.

Indie darlings Sleigh Bells are set to release an "emotionally heavy" second album in 2012 the band tell Rolling Stone.

Paul McCartney is also set to release some solo material in 2012 in the form of a covers record. Apparently inspired by the latest Foo Fighters disc, Macca wants to cover some rock and roll tunes and add his flair to it. This is something we are looking forward to.

As Adele rules the world in 2011, and she deservingly has a right to, she has opened up to OUT magazine and wishes she had worked harder at saving the realationship that inspired her current smash album, 21. She says "I don't think I'll ever forgive myself for not making my relationship with my ex on 21 work, because he's the love of my life. I would still be singing in the shower, of course, but yeah --my career, my friendships, my hobbies. I would have given up trying to be the best."

Incubus have unveiled the cover to their latest album, If Not Now, When? Which arrives in July. Take a look at the cover below:

Live Pix - Mobb Deep Reunion

Last week Officially A Yuppie Correspondant and Premiere NYC DJ RICH D SMOOV was front and center for the Mobb Deep reunion show at Best Buy Theater. On hand for the event was Black Thought of The Roots doing a solo set, DJ Stretch Armstrong, Ghostface Killah with Raekwon and Cappadonna and of course Mobb Deep with special guest Lil' Kim. Here are some pictures from Rich D Smoov.

Black Thought
DJ Stretch Armstrong
Ghostface, Cappa, Raekwon
Mobb Deep w/ Lil Kim

Lil Kim
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White Lies on Letterman

White Lies hit up Letterman this week to perform "Bigger Than Us," have a look!

Joy Formidable on Conan!

The Joy Formidable hit up Conan this week to perform their magnificent song "Whirring" and they took the stage (litterally) by storm. Have a look.

We interviewed the Joy Formidable last week, take a look at that interview HERE.

Sunday, May 15, 2011


Looks can be deceiving. At first glance the English band Rolo Tomassi looks like ever other indie outfit out there these days. Yet, when they start playing, stand back or be prepared for a battle, it will get ugly. The band who is noted to be "Progressive Hardcore," take the style of bands like Dillinger Escape Plan, the DIY ethos of Minor Threat and mix it with the aggressive nature of Throats and you have a formula that could sum up Rolo Tomassi but not exactly. Unlike most hardcore bands, the band is fronted by a very powerful and intense woman, Eva Spence, who delivers up a raucous intonation that proves she can shove her way into the old boys club and not think twice. The band, who take their name from the fictional character in the critical cult film, LA Confidential have been taking the UK underground by storm and even gaining attention to worldwide famous producer Diplo, who produced the band's sophomore release, 2010's Cosmetology. In an exclusive interview take a look as we talked to Tomassi synth man and backing singer James Spence on the bands sound, textures and pushing their way in the scene.

You hail from Sheffield, England that has very thick music roots, do you feel you need to uphold any legacy from Sheffield or does that not even matter?

Whilst we are all proud to be from Sheffield in whatever small way, I don't feel as though, especially during our lifetime as a band, that Sheffield has had a particular scene or movement that we've been part of and in that way I don't feel as though we have a particular legacy to uphold.

The name of the band comes from the phony character in LA Confidential, how did you decide this would be the title of you band?

I wish there was more to this story but its totally a superficial thing. I watched the movie and thought it sounded cool. Thats all there is to it.

Is LA Confidential a favorite film of yours? It is pretty amazing even after all these years.

Absolutely. I watched it again recently maybe for the 15th+ time and it still is a great movie.

Word is you are already working on a follow up to 2010’s Cosmology. How is this coming along?

We're certainly thinking about it but haven't actually started on it as a group. We've written a few new tracks that will be released on record as part of our subs club that have already been recorded. I've begun writing some music that will possibly make it to album three as I'm sure the others have but there are no entirely new tracks as yet.

Has making each record, especially with different people behind the controls, been a learning experience for you? What do you pick up at the end recording?

Yeah totally. We've been fortunate in that we've never had a bad recording experience with anyone we've worked with and its been more of a case of people bringing out the best of us in different ways. At the end of any recording process I always feel as though I could be better at playing my instrument which is positive as its drives me on to improve before the next time we go to the studio.

Diplo produced Cosmology, how was it like working with him. How did he end up producing your music when he generally sticks to electronic based material?

It was certainly different. We've never really worked with a 'producer' as such but I think we've the group of songs we had for this record it was the right decision. When it came to us working with him, he mentioned our name in an interview and we approached him about doing a remix. It escalated from there.

Would you work with him again?

If our calendars could match up again, totally. He's a busy guy though.

Some of the British press has called you, Throats, Gallows, and Flats the future of British punk. Do you feel like this is a true statement? Or do you stand out beyond those other bands?

Its a really bold statement to make but equally something that doesn't really concern me. We haven't ever set out to be 'the future of music' or whatever.

Years ago a woman would never front a hardcore band like yours, now time have changed for the better, is Eva a pioneer in showing this change?

Again, pioneer is maybe too strong a word to use. Me and Eva have played in bands since we were 11 and 12 years old and when we started this band it was a simple decision to do it together. Never was it our intention to do it because no-one else had a female vocalist or that the hardcore was crying out for a female pioneer.

The style of the band is not just punk and hardcore, but also has elements of jazz and “mathcore,” who are some of your influences in your style and sound?

That jazz based sound is brought in by our guitarist Joe. I know he's influenced by Pat Metheny when it comes to that and a lot of the math stuff comes from bands like Meshuggah and Dillinger Escape Plan.

Your music is greeted with such raw emotion and anger, is it therapeutic for you to play a style
like this to release some of those sentiments?

I think the therapy can often be more in the writing of the music but then getting to play live and do our thing is also a lot of fun.

With your live shows and creating your music that has high emotions, playing the songs night in and night out, is it tiring to take yourselves back to that place of pain and anger?

Not at all. I think if the songs ever did have that effect, we'd take them out of the set. The emotions were included at our own discretion and I think, particularly with regards to lyrics, if anything was too difficult to sing/scream about, it wouldn't be included.