Friday, January 20, 2017

A Few Things for a Friday in January

Laura Stevenson in Asbury Park's Convention Hall for Don Giovanni's New Alternative Music Festival back in September.

When Black Friday Comes...

Here are a few things that have hit my email box in the past few weeks that I figured I'd gather all together in one place to mark the day.

Charly Bliss, "Turd"

Eva Hendricks of Charly Bliss penned this song after being catcalled, touched without her consent, and followed as she walked home from a guitar lesson. "I wrote this song to make me feel like I had some power in a situation where I felt totally powerless, and we're releasing it for the same reason," wrote Hendricks at the Charly Bliss Bandcamp page back in November.

The song is sneering and angry but full of all of the "bubblegrunge" sound that I've come to love about Charly Bliss.

All proceeds from the sale of "Turd" go to support Planned Parenthood.



ENTRANCE, "Not Gonna Say Your Name"

Los Angeles-based Guy Blakeslee performs under the name ENTRANCE. Earlier this week, Blakeslee released "Not Gonna Say Your Name," a song expressing his feelings about the current political state of affairs in the U.S.

"Not Gonna Say Your Name" is a beautiful entry into the great tradition of American protest hymns.

All proceeds from the sale of "Not Gonna Say Your Name" go to support Planned Parenthood.



Above The Moon, "We're Still Here"

Madison, NJ's Above The Moon released single "We're Still Here" today. Kate Griffin sings, "It's all right to feel defeated," but follows that with, "No matter what, we won't surrender." Her voice -- and the song -- is simultaneously sad and uplifting.

All proceeds from the sale of "We're Still Here" go to support Planned Parenthood.



Laura Stevenson, Live at The Vera Club

I am a huge fan of Laura Stevenson. The Long Island native is one of our great songwriters, has a voice that is otherworldly in its beauty; and she runs one of the funniest accounts on Instagram. Last month, Stevenson released Live at The Vera Club, a document of the second-to-last evening of an eight-week, international, headlining tour. The show took place in Groningen, Netherlands in front of a small crowd.

The set that evening included songs from 2015's Cocksure along with favorites like "Runner," "L-Dopa," "Master of Art," and a cover of the Replacements' "Alex Chilton." The album is available as a free download from Jeff Rosentstock's Quote Unquote Records; though, in exchange for downloading, you're encouraged to make a donation.

All donations for Laura Stevenson: Live at The Vera Club go to support Planned Parenthood.



dollys, tape

This week, Asbury / New Brunswick band dollys released a five-song covers compilation via Little Game Records. The collection includes covers, like "The Way You Make Me Feel" by Michael Jackson and "Cecilia" by Simon and Garfunkel, which have shown up in dollys' live sets from time to time. In addition, the band take on "Somebody Made for Me" by Emitt Rhodes. They turn Nirvana's "Tourette's" into a surf / spy rock instrumental. And they include another instrumental take on a classic with "Ghostbusters."

dollys recorded and mixed everything live to 4-track tape. The first batch of tapes sold out at the band's release show, but there's still a pre-order link up at Little Game Records.

All proceeds from the sale of tape go to support Planned Parenthood.



Kino Kimino, Fruit & Flowers, Lunch Ladies, and EVL MOMMZ at The Saint on January 23rd

On Monday night, January 23rd, Little Dickman Records and CoolDad Music are happy to bring you the final stop on Kino Kimino's March To Washington Tour. The band will be heading home after touring their way down to this Saturday's Women's March On Washington. You can check out my interview from earlier this week with Kino Kimino mastermind, Kim Talon, to read what she had to say about her inspirations for the tour.

The show promises to be a great one. All of the bands put on amazing live shows, and it's really a no-risk proposition since admission is only $5. RSVP to the show here and come out on Monday night.

All proceeds from Kino Kimino's commemorative March To Washington Tour merchandise will go to support Planned Parenthood.



Premiere: New Single from Asbury Park's Modern Crowds. EP In Between Coming Soon.


"Burlington"

Asbury Park alternative rock four-piece, Modern Crowds, are Joseph Pelligrinelli (lead vocals / rhythm guitar), Adam Baczkowski (lead guitar), Doug Gatta (bass), and Charlie Kupilik (drums). They've only been at it as a band since April of last year, but they've already managed to make some noise. They recorded their 5-song EP, Go, with Pete Steinkopf (The Bouncing Souls) over at his Little Eden Studio. The band are currently in the process of making their debut full-length with Paul Ritchie (gods, The Parlor Mob).

While working on the new LP, Modern Crowds came up with some new ideas that they felt differed enough from their current output to merit a stand alone release. To that end, the band are announcing today that they will put out In Between next month. We have the first single, "Burlington," for you today.

Recorded -- like the rest of In Between -- in Baczkowski's home studio, "Burlington" is a quiet, acoustic guitar-driven song about finding comfort with your small place in the larger world. Give the song a listen below and head over to Modern Crowds' Facebook page to stay up to date on release info for In Between and the new album as it becomes available.

Modern Crowds have their New York City debut tonight, January 20th, when they play Arlene's Grocery.



Thursday, January 19, 2017

What's Going On: 1/19, 1/20, 1/21 & 1/22, 2017

The Vansaders play to benefit the Wounded Warrior Project on Friday at Asbury Park Music Foundation.

This Is Happening

Feels like a good weekend to get out there and rock and scream and just, generally, make your voice heard. I don't know.

You can start doing that on Thursday night with the weekly open mic at The Asbury. Joe P of Deal Casino continues his run at Langosta Lounge. Cadillac Plan are at The Saint.

Friday is a busy night. Over at the new Asbury Park Music Foundation stage, Deal Casino, The Vansaders, Bobby Mahoney and The Seventh Son, and The Carousers play the "A Set for Vets" benefit. All proceeds from that one go to support The Wounded Warrior Project.

Also on Friday, it's the return of Yacht Rock night with DJ Atom Worth at APYC. Mint 400 Records presents Delicate Flowers, dollys, The Maravines, A. Bird, Fairmont, and The Skullers at Stosh's in Fair Lawn. Philly's Creepoid play their NYC-area EP release at Sunnyvale in Brooklyn with Russian Baths, IYEZ, and BIRDS. Tommy Stinson (The Replacements, Guns n Roses) brings his resurrected Bash + Pop project to a sold out Saint for a show with my Bay Ridge, Brooklyn paisanos, The So So Glos. Laketon play a late show at The Saint. Fortune Yeller head to Brooklyn's Terra Firma for a show with Fair Panic, The Summercamp, Dan Bindschedler.

The Whirling Dervishes are at Brighton Bar on Saturday night with Undertow and Loaded Poets. Clash Bar in Clifton hosts Delsea, NGHTCRWLRS, Ken De Poto and The Cold Pizza, and Toad. Dark City Strings play Langosta. It's another sold-out show at The Saint with The Marcus King Band. Into Another are at Wonder Bar.

Jennifer Rositano is back for another opera brunch at Langosta on Sunday. Colossal Street Jam host a free video shoot at The Saint. Cold Weather Company, Hidden Cabins, Lowlight, and Joe Galuppo are at Scarlet Pub in New Brunswick. C.R. and The Degenerates head to Brooklyn's Sunnyvale for a show with Where's Walden?, Back To Monsoon, and DEMI.

Get out there this weekend. There are plenty of opportunities to get together, march, and show that you'll continue to let your voice be heard. Listen to people. Tell them what you think. Donate to a cause you think may need it. Subscribe to a legitimate print newspaper. Keep on rockin in the free world.

THURSDAY (1/19)

The Asbury Hotel, Soundbooth (Asbury): Open Mic, 8pm, FREE

Ask (Ask): Modern Chemistry / Sinai Vessel / Ragged Lines / Dryjacket / Hodera, 7pm

Clash Bar (Clifton): Aquino / Declan Remus, 8pm, $5

House of Independents (Asbury): Live Band Karaoke, 8pm, FREE

Langosta Lounge (Asbury): JoeP of Deal Casino, 9pm

Meatlocker (Montclair): Sharptooth / Bad Off / Psychodynamic / Belligerent, 9pm, donation

Roxy & Duke's Roadhouse (Dunellen): Avant Aerial: Rock Edition, 7pm, $10 adv, $20 door

Roxy & Duke's Roadhouse (Dunellen): HaHas & TaTas (Comedy & Burlesque), 9pm, $10

The Saint (Asbury): The Cadillac Plan, 7:30pm, $8

FRIDAY (1/20)


Asbury Park Music Foundation (Asbury): A Set for Vets ft Deal Casino / The Vansaders / Bobby Mahoney & The Seventh Son / The Carousers, 7:30pm, $10 adv, $12 door

Asbury Park Yacht Club (Asbury): Yacht Rock Night w/ Atom Worth, 9pm, FREE

The Brighton Bar (Long Branch): The Aristocants / Dirty / The Sacred / Tango Machina / Thee Volatiles, 7:30pm, $8

Clash Bar (Clifton): Rock the Inauguration Benefit ft. Prodigal Sons / Asphalt Grey / MonitoR / Views Into Vastness / The Selma Blair Witch Project, 8:30pm

House of Independents (Asbury): All American Luau Dance Party, 9pm, FREE

Langosta Lounge (Asbury): Steve Reilly and The Rain, 9pm, FREE

The Saint (Asbury): Bash + Pop (Tommy Stinson) / The So So Glos, 7:30pm, SOLD OUT

The Saint (Asbury): Laketon, 10:45pm, $10

Shea Stadium (Brooklyn): Ovlov / Sinai Vessel / Bilge Rat / Fond Han, 8:30pm, $10

Starland Ballroom (Sayreville): Reel Big Fish / Anti-Flag, 6:30pm, $22.50 adv, $25 door

Stosh's (Fair Lawn): Delicate Flowers / dollys / The Maravines / A. Bird / Fairmont / The Skullers, 7:30pm, FREE

Sunnyvale (Brooklyn): Creepoid / Russian Baths / IYEZ / BIRDS, 8pm, $12

The Stone Pony (Asbury): Black Dog (A different Zep tribute from the one that played Asbury last week), 7pm, $12 adv, $15 door

Terra Firma (Brooklyn): Fair Panic / Fortune Yeller / The Summercamp / Dan Bindschedler, 10pm, $10

The Wonder Bar (Asbury): Penque - Diomede Band, 7:30pm, $8

SATURDAY (1/21)

The Asbury Hotel, Soundbooth (Asbury): The Constant, 8pm, FREE

Asbury Park Yacht Club (Asbury): Gallagher's Guest House / Mohican, 9pm, FREE

The Brighton Bar (Long Branch): The Whirling Dervishes / Undertow / Loaded Poets, 8pm, $8

Clam House (Ask): Spowder / Killer Shrimp / Motor Heart Man, 7pm

Clash Bar (Clifton): Delsea / NGHTCRWLRS / Ken De Poto and The Cold Pizza / Toad, 8pm, $10

Fox and Crow (Jersey City): Planned Parenthood Benefit ft. Cicada Radio / Trü / Young House / John Feuerbach of Désir Decir, 8pm, $10

House of Independents (Asbury): Black Light 90s Dance Party, 9pm, FREE

J House (Ask): Internal Rhyme / The Breakfast Boiz / Jonathan Stamper, 8pm, $5

Langosta Lounge (Asbury): Dark City Strings, 10pm, FREE

Meatlocker (Montclair): Psycho / Fuck Face / Dutchguts / Tall Can / Woodland Tomb, 8pm, donation

Millhill Basement (Trenton): Jordan Royale / Wade Wilson / RayRayBeats / Roebus One, 9pm, $7

Roxy & Duke's Roadhouse (Dunellen): A Perfect Blend / Mid Life Crisis: Acappella, 1pm, $20

The Saint (Asbury): The Marcus King Band / The Stephen Maxwell Quartet, 7:30pm, SOLD OUT 

The Stone Pony (Asbury): Dark Sky Choir, 7pm, $12 adv, $15 door

UTF (Ask): Tropicana Tom / Halcionne / SBoys / NGGA, 7pm

The Wonder Bar (Asbury): Into Another / Supertouch / High Disciple, 7pm, $16 adv, $18 door

SUNDAY (1/22)

The Asbury Hotel, Soundbooth (Asbury): Sunday Night Trivia w/ Gentleman Jim, 6pm, FREE

Hidden Grounds Espresso Bar (New Brunswick): Adapa / Subdalo / Arora, 4:30pm

Kelly's Korner (Ask): The Dead Flowers / Twelve Times Kevin, 8:30pm

Langosta Lounge (Asbury): Opera w/ Jennifer Rositano, 1pm

The Saint (Asbury): Colossal Street Jam Video Shoot, 8pm, FREE

Scarlet Pub (New Brunswick): Cold Weather Company / Hidden Cabins / Lowlight / Joe Galuppo, 8pm, $5

The Stone Pony (Asbury): Rock To The Top, 1:30pm, $10 adv, $12 door

Sunnyvale (Brooklyn): Where's Walden? / C.R. and The Degenerates / Back To Monsoon / DEMI, $10, 8pm

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Run The Jewels, Run The Jewels 3, 2016

Album Review

by Ken Geiger

Run The Jewels officially managed to ruin every album list maker's Christmas by dropping this bombshell of a record (But, since it physically comes out in 2017, I'll count it in my 2017 favorites.). But how can we really be mad at them? This is fucking Run The Jewels, the rap duo of Killer Mike and El-P, who have been killing it in the political rap game for years now. Their first two records were solid, but I always thought they were capable of something greater (which may be hard for their fans to believe). Run The Jewels 3 not only answered my thoughts about Run the Jewels' being able to achieve an even higher level of greatness in their sound, but it also shut me the hell up and took me for one last wild ride of 2016.

Instrumentally, this album is just brutal and relentless. Songs like "Talk to Me" and "Hey Kids" have beats that leave me feeling like I was just beaten over the head with a shovel for the whole duration of the song. Even the more somber tracks such as "2100" and "Everybody Stay Calm" are so dark that they still give the listener the same kind of chills as the more bombastic cuts. This is not a record for the ears of a rap fan who digs the kind of music you hear on Top 40. Hell, there are some hardcore and metal bands who probably wish they could write songs that go this hard.

Run The Jewels, on the lyrical side, is extremely political (I mean, Killer Mike hangs out with Bernie Sanders. That should be a dead giveaway.). Given the year we just had, you'd assume they have much to discuss, and oh boy do they ever. While the Donald Trump jabs are shockingly few, Killer Mike and El-P make up for it with many dark and humorous tellings of police corruption, bigotry, and a revolution of the people through the album's songs. I have to mention that their flows on this record really stood out to me, especially El-P's. I couldn't help but have chills run down my spine every time he would take the mic and come out red hot.

Overall, Run The Jewels 3 shows the group at their strongest to date, both musically and lyrically. Definitely was the best Christmas gift I was given this year, and a great way to start off 2017.

The best song on this record? Probably "Everybody Calm Down," which is filled with some great minimalistic instrumentation that is accompanied by kickass flows from both Killer Mike and El-P.