Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Bully - Feels Like CD review

I first heard of Bully through one of their opening bands from their current tour called Heat.
(see show review)
I found a great youtube video of Bully playing the song Trying live on the Conan O'Brien show so I was eager to see the band live. The song that really hooked me into Bully was when I first heard Milkman, which is also on this CD but I'm getting a little ahead of myself.
Feels Like starts off with I Remember. The opening track is chock full of youthful rock energy and ends rather quickly, leaving the listener wanting more. Alicia Bognanno screams through the song but still manages to convey heartfelt emotion and sentiment through the lyrics. Great opening song.
Reason keeps the energy level high and continues along the same vein as I Remember. A melodic lead vocal and guitar line carry the song along into a heavy crescendo.
Too Tough plods along with a heavy groove that immediately hooked me in with it's melodic simplicity. The lyrics seem to be describing the break up of a relationship. The vocals have a come hither quality that is hard to ignore.
Brainfreeze is another up tempo rocker that could be described as punky grunge. Smells like a college radio hit to me.
The first single from Feels Like is the somewhat controversial Trying. The lyrics convey the feeling of a troubled youth who is trying to deal with a uncertain future. Alicia proves why she took the torch from Courtney on this one with a great vocal performance that is full of angst and exciting energy.
Trash features some great guitar noises combined with notes of dissonance to create a heavy sound. The low key to screaming vocals are a perfect topping for the guitar interplay.
Six is a punk rock song. Fast and full of energy and exuberance.
Pictures is another great rocker with a kick ass bass sound and a new wavish chorus.
Milkman is my favorite song on Feels Like. The raw energy that the band exudes is infectious and the music has a aggressive edge that really raises the cool factor of the song. Just as the feeling of the song hits you it's over in a flash.
Feels Like ends with the song Bully. This song is another aggressive rocker that keeps the overall energy of the CD flowing in the right direction. Love the harmonic blending of the bendy guitar notes with the vocals.
I would definitely recommend the Feels Like CD to any college radio, punk rock, grunge or alternative rock music fan.

Monday, December 7, 2015

Water Is Life

Most people take it for granted that we will always have an endless supply of water right at our fingertips. Fresh, clean water to drink and wash things with. But water companies are beginning to limit the amount the water the public can use during the summer months due to shortages, especially in the western part of the United States.
Along with this I'm sure many people don't realize that the water from our toilets, showers and washers is purified and sent back into the water system for us to use again.
We must remember that water is a precious commodity that will not last forever.
A big problem I have noticed is that many water bottles are thrown away into the garbage with the cap screwed on and various amounts of water still inside. I've seen many unopened bottles just blindly thrown into the trash, still full of precious water.
The first problem is that the recyclable plastic bottles are not being recycled.
The second, more important problem is that water is left sealed inside the plastic bottle and just thrown away. It takes thousands of years for a plastic bottle to break down in a landfill. The water stays sealed in the plastic bottle as long as the plastic stays intact. This water may never make it out of the bottle and into our water system again.
Water Is Not Garbage!
Water Is Life.
The solution is quite simple, just dump the unused water from any used water bottle into a sink or a toilet so if can be filtered and reused. Please think twice before throwing away any amount of water into a trash can. This applies to old soda, leftover coffee and any amount of bottled water.
If this water never makes it into a sink it can never be reused.
Don't take water for granted and treat it like garbage, empty out any liquid containers before recycling or discarding the container.

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Band 101 - Number 6

Band 101 is a blog series that deals with the in's and out's of being a participating member of a working cover band.

Entry number six deals with a somewhat controversial subject, using cheat sheets when playing live. First off, no matter what any band member may say cheat sheets are OK to use if you can't remember the words to a song or the chord changes. Practicing a song at home is great but playing live is very different, sometimes memorizing a song can be hard no matter how many times you may practice it at home. Cheat sheets are a great tool on the road to memorizing any song. A no cheat sheet band policy is really not a good thing, as at least 1 band member may need them to perform confidently. It's not uncommon for a famous recording artist to use cheat sheets so I think it's OK for any local musician to use them. I've witnessed famous recording artist Lucinda Williams use a songbook onstage. Lucinda wasn't glued to her songbook so it didn't detract from her outstanding live performance. It's no secret that Ozzy Osbourne of Black Sabbath fame has the words to his songs continuously displayed on a fake monitor out front. This is the best way to do it but not all musicians have the technology or the budget to do this. The absolute best way for a working musician to "cheat" is to have a ipad or computer device set up on your mic stand so any quick glances can go unnoticed while performing. Finding a special attachment for your mic stand is easy to find if you want to buy one for your ipad. If you don't have a ipad I found the best way to make a cheat sheet is to write in big, bold black ink, any notations on a large sheet of foldable white paper. Be sure print your notes in big, black bold lettering. Using any other color ink will render your cheat sheets illegible once you find yourself under colored stage lighting. The best place to put any cheat sheets is on the floor directly in front of you. If you're playing a club that provides monitors you can tape them to the front of your monitor to hide them from the crowd, this will not affect the sound from the monitor. Lyrics can be taped on a side fill. Be sure to place them directly in your line of vision so you see them while you're singing. I found that cheat sheets are the absolute best way to defeat any crippling self doubt you have with any song you're not sure on. Be sure not to spill any liquid on them so you can use them for your next gig. The main thing to remember is that if you find yourself looking at your cheat sheets more than the audience you are supposed to be performing for then you are relying on them too much. Clearly, memorizing a song is the best way to go.

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Band 101 - Number 5

Band 101 is a blog series that deals with the in's and out's of being a member of a working cover band.

Episode 5 deals with the fine art of improvisation within the fairly strict confines of any cover song. Unless you're going into the studio to record a unique version of a cover song it's best to learn any cover song the proper way before trying to improvise with the chords or the arrangement. Especially if your band plans on performing the song live in front of an audience. Playing any song the proper way gives the audience a chance to recognize the song. If you change the arrangement or decide to get fancy straight away the audience may become disinterested in your band's special version. Once you have the crowd hooked in by playing a song the proper way you can then start improvising or jamming, if that's what your band wishes to do. Playing a song in the proper way will probably be enough to impress of bar full of people. But once you begin improvising or jamming you can then show off your unique talents in an attempt to further impress the crowd. A high energy guitar, bass or drum solo can boost the energy level of any crowded bar room. Once you notice the crowd beginning to lose interest in your jamming, it's best to go back to the original groove and close the song out. Some cover bands choose not to improvise, but once you start learning how to read crowds you can jam out as much as you like. Jamming on a good groove, especially if the girls are dancing out front, can raise up the energy level of any room. The art is knowing when to jam at just the right moments in order to continue holding the crowds undivided attention. All of these jamming judgement calls come with years of experience and a proven set list full of crowd pleasing songs. Jamming gives your bands soloist something to look forward to as well as your loyal following. Once your band earns the reputation of a being a good jamming band chances are your following will be chomping at the bit wondering when your band will cut loose and let some solos fly.

Artvoice Newspaper - Buffalo, NY

 2/19/15: The Artvoice webpage has corrected my pen name on the weblink for my Southern Bastards review to Joe Tell, however the name on the review webpage is still Jack Dumpert. The current issue has the real Jack Dumpert as a reviewer for Fury Max: My War Gone By.

 2/18/15: After a visit to Queen City Bookstore recently it turns out that Jack Dumpert is a real person who will be submitting reviews for Queen City and Artvoice in the future. Since I didn't sign my last review somehow it was assumed that Jack Dumpert submitted it. Needless to say I will be signing all of my future reviews as Joe Tell to avoid any more mixups.

Original post: In the most recent issue of the Artvoice newspaper, the only arts & entertainment paper in town worth picking up to read, my pen name has been changed, once again, this time to another new alias/pen name Jack Dumpert...?
I think it may be interesting to follow my pen names throughout because it may make for some interesting "blogless blog" reading, so here we go,
Once again the newest issue, 2/12 - 2/18 the Southern Bastards graphic novel review by Jack Dumpert.

1/29 - 2/04 issue The Underwater Welder review by Joe Miletto.

1/8 - 1/14 issue Thanos Rising review by Joe Tell.

12/24 - 1/7 The Joker review by Joe Tell.

12/11 - 12/17 Batman '66 review by Joeseph Tell.

Anyway you spell it's still me, Joseph Militello.

My sincere thanks to Emil from Queen City Bookstore and Artvoice newspaper for publishing my reviews, in print and online.

Thank you!!

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Band 101 - Number 2

This is the second installment of Band 101.
Band 101 deals with issues that may come up within the fragile band dynamic.
These issues usually have a negative impact on the delicate balance that keep a band together.
Band 101 offers sensible solutions to these problems so you can keep the lineup of your working cover band intact in order to continue on and play paying gigs.

If you play in a working cover band in which none of the band members are married and none of the members have any kids then playing during the Holiday season usually isn't a big issue. But if, at least, 1 of your fellow band members is married playing around the holidays can become a problem. It's a good idea to break away from your regular band routine of weekly practice and gigging altogether to avoid any scheduling conflicts during the holidays. If your band wants to gig on New Years Eve it's a really good idea to have at least 1 or 2 reliable fill in players on call in case one your band members can't play because of holiday plans. Usually the single band members have a desire to play on New Years Eve so they can make the money. If you don't have a reliable fill in player turning down a New Years Eve gig may cause the single band members to become resentful because they won't be able to play and make that extra money. On the other hand taking on a New Years Eve gig without a reliable fill-in player can cause the married band member to become disgruntled. Especially if they have to cancel or change any family plans in order to make the gig.
Resentment usually festers within a band and can lead to a member quitting or the band breaking up altogether. This means if you want to continue on as a working band you have to find new members and re-establish your regular band routine all over again.
It's a good idea for any working band to openly discuss the idea of practicing and gigging around the holidays to make sure everyone is on the same page.
If any unforeseen problems or conflicts come up during the discussion then it's best to just take a break from your regular band routine until after the holidays for the good of the entire band.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Band 101 - Number 1

Playing in a band can be difficult at times.
Especially if you want to earn a living playing music.
Band 101 is going to focus primarily on some the trials and tribulations of playing in a working band. By working band I mean a full band that covers other peoples hit songs. Working bands usually play in local bars in an attempt to earn extra money.

The first Band 101 post deals with an issue that you may or may not have dealt with if you play a electric guitar or bass with a guitar strap. The issue is playing unbalanced guitars that are neck heavy. By neck heavy I mean that when you take your fretting hand off of the neck the head-stock and the neck of the guitar point down toward the ground, away from your body. Playing a neck heavy guitar can be a distraction because you always have to hold up the guitar neck while playing notes on the fretboard.
When you purchase a guitar online it may be neck heavy and you won't find out about it until it's delivered to your home and you proceed to put a guitar strap on it. If the neck droops down when you stand up then you have yourself a neck heavy guitar.
If you currently play a neck heavy guitar and you are comfortable with it then you're lucky, I find that a neck heavy guitar can be quite a distraction if you want to concentrate solely on the notes you're trying to play. Neck heavy guitars can also cause a problem if you plan on moving around and performing on a stage. You always have to pay close attention and be aware of the position of the neck so it doesn't hit someone or something onstage.
I recently found a easy solution that doesn't require any expensive mods to your guitar and no monetary investment to fix the problem.
It's a surprisingly simple solution, first take the guitar strap off of your guitar. Thread the lower part of the strap, the part closest to your waist, through a belt loop on your pants. Or you can simply thread the strap between your belt and your jeans. Then reconnect the strap to the guitar. You'll find that this simple solution solves the problem of playing a neck heavy guitar.

Thursday, November 26, 2015


By Stephen D. Korshak and David Spurlock (Authors) Margaret Brundage (Artist)


The Alluring Art of Margaret Brundage: Queen of Pulp Pin-Up Art is a very entertaining and interesting read. The book sheds new light on the life and career of legendary Weird Tales cover artist, Margaret Brundage. Margaret’s lush and alluring paintings created great controversy in the 1930s. Her lavishly colored artwork featured scantily clad young women bearing whips and wielding knives that were menaced by all types of monstrous beings. Margaret’s innovative and shocking artwork was in high demand because her covers sold the most pulp magazines. The best part of this book is all of Margaret’s stunning, pulp magazine cover art for Weird Tales, Oriental Stories, Magic Carpet and Golden Fleece are all compiled together along with some never before seen, unpublished work. Many of her covers featured gothic fetish themes based on the stories that were published within Weird Tales. Stories that were written by renowned authors like H. P. Lovecraft, Clark Ashton Smith, Robert Bloch and Conan the Barbarian creator, Robert E. Howard. The second part of the book reveals, for the first time ever, the secret life that Margaret led apart from the pulp magazine scene. She and her husband Slim were political activists who took part in the birth of the American counterculture. Margaret Johnson and Slim Brundage first met at Chicago’s infamous Dil Pickle Club. The club was known as a speakeasy but its members also participated in the highly political causes that defined the Chicago Renaissance. The Dil Pickle Club was at the center of a diverse subculture that encouraged free speech and rallied for workers and civil rights at a time when activism led to blacklisting. This is essential reading for any fan of fantasy and horror art.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

JiBmaster - Buffalo, NY

JiBmaster - Happy Flapjacks

Happy Flapjacks was released by the members of JiBmaster as a tribute to the JiBmaster himself, Jeff Borycki after he passed away unexpectedly. Go to www.jibmaster.net to hear the music.

JiBmaster - School Pizza

 Who is JiBmaster?
For those who don't know, JiBmaster is a Buffalo-based original rock band.  With a particular, nearly-retro guitar-based sound, distinctive, catchy songwriting, and "not-your-usual" subject matter, you'll soon come to know when you are hearing a JiBmaster tune.  If there is a category for the music, I'd have to call it "Novelty Stoner Folk(ish) Rock".  The music was written entirely by the band, and recorded in a basement studio.  I produced the album - for the first time in my career acting solely as producer/engineer, and not performing :)
Perhaps best of all, School Pizza features the performances of many other great musicians from the WNY area: guitar solos, viola, trumpet, & more ear candy is scattered all over the album.

Visit JiBmaster.net

The JiBmaster website is up and functional!  You can:
See the full album artwork and credits
Download all the songs (free!)
Leave a message for JiBmaster
Even give a donation to help the cause
There are more features to come, including live photos, videos, exclusive JiBmaster merchandise, and who knows what else... 

Purchase or Preview the Album at CDBaby
The CD is also available at CDBaby.com!  You can preview the entire album for free, and buy only what you like ($0.99 per song, or $5.00 for the whole album).  Old Timers: You can even order a real live physical CD!
Even if you're too cheap for that (like me), you can at least go to CD Baby and download the single "Spread it Around" for free.  It will help put JiBmaster on the digital charts!

Spread it Around!
If you like the album, please tell your family, friends, neighbors, co-workers, chiropractors, mistresses, drug suppliers, and mortal enemies!  We hope you enjoy it, and thanks for your support!
-Mike Boncaldo & JiBmaster

Thank You, Mike!

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Bully @ Mohawk Place, Buffalo NY

Bully recently headlined a triple bill @ Mohawk Place in Buffalo NY on 9/26. Bully is winning new fans on each stop of their world wide tour. Bully is touring to promote their debut album "Feels Like". I have to thank lead singer Alicia Bognanno for granting me permission to take photos of the band. I felt I had to ask because I was @ the show covering Heat (see show review). I also had the opportunity to meet and talk to the drummer and the lead guitarist for a few minutes. Bully has a brash and exciting sound that is reminiscent of the best alt/rock of the 90's. Bully rocked Mohawk Place with their quick songs and punk heavy sound. Bully was exciting to watch as they bounced around the stage with youthful exuberance.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Heat @ Mohawk Place, Buffalo, NY

Heat played an exciting set of music on 9/26 @ Mohawk Place in Buffalo, NY. The room was packed with lots of twenty-somethings who were ready to rock out with Heat. The Montreal band sounded right and the melodies were tight. The band plays a very unique blend of 90's shoe-gaze and 80's new-wave packed with plenty of rebellious attitude and youthful energy. Singer Susil Sharma manages to sound, sing And look as cool as Lou Reed whilst playing lead guitar on a revved up Rickenbacker. Matthew Fiorentino manipulated an array of foot pedals to enhance his rhythmic guitar playing. His effects driven, guitar sounds seemingly became more interesting and complex as the set went on. Bassist Raphael Bussieres plays with a punchy, over-driven sound. His playing style perfectly compliments and enhances the melodies of each song. Drummer Alex Crow provided the back beat, playing with boundless energy and effortless precision. The band finished off their short, but satisfying set with a wall of psychedelic sounds. Be sure to catch Heat if they hit your town, you won't be disappointed. Check out my review of Heats Rooms EP on this blog.

Special thanks to Evan Taylor and all of the members of Heat.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Heat - Montreal, Canada

Heat is a great, new band from Montreal who are currently on tour supporting another great band, Bully. 

Heat Website
Heat Facebook

Heat: Rooms EP music review
"This Life" kicks off the EP in style. The vocalist really sounds like he's sneering while he's singing. The line right before the guitar solo pretty much sums up the feeling I get from the music and the attitude of a hungry, new band. The 2 guitars blend together on the song to create a melodic sound with a definite punk edge. Great opening track.
"Rooms" has a melodic guitar intro that couples along with a cool lead guitar. Heat uses the 2 guitar setup to create a cohesive and well balanced sound. The melodic bass line is easily heard in the mix. The vocal sound and phrasing remind me of a young Bob Dylan.
"All I Wanna Do" would be a great track to listen to while you and your friends hang out and play records. The lead guitar on this song is awesome. Diggin' the bass sound on this track. 
"4 25" has a fancy, free-flowing groove. The vocals perfectly punctuate the mesmerizing guitar groove.
 "Susifine" is a brash alternative rock song. The bass follows the vocal adding even more depth and melody to the track. This song is my favorite tune on the EP. The sound reflects the urgency of a young band that is on the rise.
The tempo of "Ritual" is quick and chock full of rockin' guitar sounds and harmony vocals. 
"Wild Eyes" immediately reminded me of REM and The Smiths. Heat closes out this EP with a awesome, melodic track.  

The sound of Heat is all at once fresh and familiar. Equally calling to mind the 1970s proto-punk of New York City and the sprawling psychedelia of 90s UK shoegaze, it's a sound that is infused with youthful attitude and is altogether self-assured at it's core. A call to arms to the tune of weaving guitars and baritone crooning, this Montreal 4-piece has been turning heads and catching ears worldwide.

Special thanks to Evan and Heat.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Common Purpose - Buffalo, NY

Common Purpose latest Generation (Wh)Y EP cover

Gary Ranney is a indie hip hop artist out of Buffalo NY. Common Purpose is the brainchild of Gary Ranney and he has recently released an advance single from his new EP entitled, Certainty And Doubt. The Generation (Wh)Y CD will be released this summer on Deepthinka records.

Here's a Youtube promo video link:
Common Purpose Twitter link:
Common Purpose bandcamp link:
Project Contributors:
Production by: DJ Bake$ale and Blueprint
Bakesale twitter link:  https://twitter.com/_bakesale
Blueprint twitter link https://twitter.com/printmatic
Blueprint website http://printmatic.net/

Monday, September 7, 2015

The Hovelists - Buffalo, NY

The Hovelists 7i EP music review.
The first track is a instrumental that sounded like Radiohead in the very beginning. A rather ominous sounding guitar line comes in providing melody. More guitars come in, some in harmony, some not, creating a schizo/psychedelic sound. Quite disconcerting, but still cool and unique.
Next up is "Poltergiest". The backing track has a unique sound that had me wondering, how did they get those cool sounds?... The tempo is laid back and cool guitar sounds swirl in and out of the mix. The vocals have a 90's timbre.
"Nineteen Ninety Five" has a vocal that is full of angst and emotion. The guitar solo sounds great and the rhythm guitar could've been a bit more upfront in the mix, like the solo, adding even more power to the melody.
"Gone Without Goodbye" starts off with a rather catchy lead guitar line. The verses have a retro new wave sound and the chorus' pick up with a pop punk sound. This song would be perfect for college radio. The outro repeats the catchy six string melody, sounding much like a 70's pop rock anthem.
"Mess thats Made" has a laid back groove much like Dinosuar Jr.
"Chapter and Verse" is another chaotic, guitar-based instrumental that would sound great on a horror film soundtrack.
"Deeper Into The Hold" could be described as a psychedelicized version of NIN. The vocals are backtracked and distorted over a hypnotized slow guitar groove. Lyrics come in and out of the mix further drawing you into the music. The song sounds like it could and will go on forever but it abruptly ends.
Believe it or not all the great sounds on the EP come from the talented minds of a self-described "alternative rock duo". These guys do a great job at recording multiple tracks and turning them into well composed songs that any fan of the "alternative" music genre would enjoy.

The Hovelists are an alternative rock duo based in Olean, NY, south of Buffalo. The Hovelists were formed in 2012, comprised of Chris Curcio (vocal/guitar) and Rich Nothem (vocal/bass.) For performances, they regularly use electronic drums and loops as percussion but they have also worked with several local drummers. The Hovelists most recent accomplishment is the completion of the 7i EP, that was  released through Tunecore on August 25th.

Rich and Chris first met in 2006 while in relationships with each others' sisters. They first started jamming together in 2007. Previous to The Hovelists they worked in a number of local Alternative/Punk Rock bands including The Electric Sheep, Canaries in the Coal Mine, and The Filters. All of those names were inspired by Sci-Fi literature. That includes The Hovelists which is a reference to a Philip K. Dick novel “The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch”.

Since their inception, The Hovelists have recorded and released seven EP's in total. All of them were recorded and produced in Chris's basement. The DIY recordings range in sound from alternative/punk rock to experimental/post-rock tracks. The 6 song EP's all follow the same format. Four standard rock/pop songs encased by two instrumentals. The lyrical content covers topics such as personal demons ,social issues and stream of consciousness. The most recent recording If You Don't EP (2014) earned a favorable response from listeners. The title track “It Just Came to Me” received airtime on some of the local college radio stations.

Rich and Chris are currently performing regionally to promote the new recording. They are also busy writing and recording for a new series of two track EP's that will be released monthly starting in January of 2016.

Check out all of The Hovelists music on their website http://www.thehovelists.com/

Special thanks to Chris and The Hovelists.


Friday, September 4, 2015

Wood Bois - Buffalo, NY

Wood Bois "Sex Playlist" EP review
"Razor Scooterz" kicks off the keyboard heavy music. A vocal heavy mix and tongue in cheek lyrical content pair up with a solid melody. You'll find yourself singing along with the catchy chorus after the 1st listen. Great up-tempo starter song to kick off the EP.
"The Sparkles" instantly reminded me of The Cure. I am a big fan of The Cure so I dug the song. The music has a true 80's feel and the lyrics quote the best of The Cure. The Sparkles sounds like a great band name or a talented TV show band.
"Can You Feel It? (No)" starts off with a cool keyboard melody and a vocal that reminded me of Depeche Mode. The Fran Drescher soundbyte really cracked me up. The song turns into a rap for a minute and goes out with a wall of rising vocals.
"Meth Girl" contains a great middle section full of crazy noises, almost like a real girl on meth!
I wanted to hear a crazy female voice somewhere on the closing track.
Maybe the legendary Franny Drescher will add some vocals on the next Wood Bois CD, that would be awesome!

Wanting to hear more Wood Bois music, I instantly clicked on the Super Flea EP recognizing the photo from the legendary Cheektowaga hotspot. The place where Joe Tell bought alot of records and comic books back in the day.
The Wood Bois combine the best of the new wave with a good dose of the Beastie Boys and write and perform entertaining music laced with plenty of comedic humor.

Wood Bois are a 2-4 piece (depending on the night) comedy synthpop/indie electro group.  We mix 80's style new wave music (for the most part) with humorous lyrics.  Comparisons we've received are "indie goth electro a la The Drums with the joking nature of Flight of the Concords," "an R-rated Weird Al," "Tenacious D with synths," and also "for fans of Soft Cell."
The current lineup of the group is:
Blaine Wood-vocals, samples, keyboards
Julius (pronounced with a lisp) Bois-vocals, samples
Hiding in the Dark Hiding in the Shadows (aka Hit D' Hits)-keyboards, production, sequencing
Shreddy Van Wailin'-guitar, vocals

We recently released our new EP Sex Playlist which you can download for free at our bandcamp site, http://woodbois.bandcamp.com  You can find more information about Wood Bois at www.woodboismusic.com

Thank you Wood Bois!

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Pants and the Family - Buffalo, NY

Pants and The Family "You Will Go To A Party Where Strange Customs Prevail" CD review.
Wait a second, I think I've been to a few parties like that...anyway, on with the review.  
"Lots of $ for Jesus, Not Much For Me" starts off with a great keyboard intro and then turns into a Talking Heads-like new wavish song. The singer sounds like the lead singer from 2Rabbit. Kudos to this band for composing music and song titles that sound very unique. I think it's important to note that each song is part of a larger Rock Opera, which is a very admirable undertaking for a local band.
How many local bands do you know of that are creative and confident enough to release a original rock opera? None that I know. Musical comparisons can be made to Green Jelly or Chunkpipe.
"Who Put The Holes In Mr. Wumpy?" is up next, the intro has a thunder tube and some random, classic, sound bites. The lyrics brought a sly smile to my face as the keyboard rose up and down setting the tempo.
"Uncle Charlie's Lap" has a rockin' drum track and a keyboard provides a smooth melody. This song brought back some childhood memories for me. Every family has a favorite Uncle or Aunt, that we all took turns sitting in as kids. It's a family tradition.
"Abandoned Gravy Train Station" has a ominous sounding keyboard track and I want to hear the keys louder in the mix. A cool bass solo takes center stage halfway through the song.
The guitar intro for "Please Ignore The Clown" is a nice touch on a keyboard based soundtrack. The keyboard plays a spooky chord progression over a low key vocal. This song is my favorite on the CD so far, I wanted to hear a little guitar solo using the sound on the track along with all the other great noises on the song.
The psuedo-jazz musical intro for "In Bed with Frogs and Toads" threw me for a loop almost as much as the song title, think about for a second or two...yuch. The song continues on with a up-tempo, keyboard based groove that reminded of an old Joe Jackson song from the 80's.
"Things Were So Much Better (Before Ginger and Mary Ann)" has a 60's psychedelic/garage rock groove. I definitely dug the groovy beat. 
"Mud Flap Prophet" was very new wave and the instrumental breakdown at the end was great.
"Hot Steamy Stank (Blue Plate Special)" has a nice call and return part with male vocalist and the female narrator, it would have been good to hear more vocal interplay between, like a B-52's song.
The title track is a true, psychedelic explosion! The instrumental features Floyd/Primus electrical bass sounds served up with a heavy dose of noise and various vocal things that fade in and out adding to the musical chaos. 
"Twelve Miles East Of Stupid" continues along the same vein but has a Pink Floyd vocal sound and tempo.
The melodies and sounds on "Why Drive When You Can Stay Home" reminded me of 70's progressive rock. The keyboards sound huge and hypnotizing along with the distorted bass. The vocal lines break up the big keyboard parts.
"You Will Go To A Party Where Strange Customs Prevail" closes out with "All The Houses Have Mean Faces". This song closes out the CD on a high note with a song that conveys an uplifting mood with it's uptempo rhythm. A honest comparison can be made to the Flamings Lips.
You Will Go To A Party Where Strange Customs Prevail is a great musical effort by a band of highly talented musicians.
Special Thanks goes out to Marc and the entire Pants and The Family band.

Sunday, August 23, 2015



Los Angeles, CA - March 26, 2015 - AWOLNATION hit the ground running for the release of their new studio album Run notching their highest debut chart positions ever landing atop the Billboard 200 at #17, followed by Top 5 chart debuts on Independent Albums #2, Alternative Albums #3, Top Rock Albums #4, alongside Top 10 chart entrances on the Digital Albums #6, Top Album Sales #9 and Current Albums #9 charts. Coming off one of the most electric and buzzed about live performances at the SXSW music festival, the band officially kick-off their North American Run Tour 2015 on May 28th. Tickets are on sale now and going fast with several dates already adding second shows. The summer headlining tour will include stops at Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival, Firefly Music Festival, Summerfest, Bottlerock Music Festival, and more. A confirmed tour itinerary is listed below with additional dates to be announced. Ticket and pre-sale info is available at AWOLNATIONmusic.com

Currently on tour in Europe playing to sold out crowds, the band returns to the U.S. for a televised live performance on Conan (TBS 11:00pm/10:00pm central) Tuesday, April 7th, followed by a round of select festival dates this spring. Continuing to climb the charts, the debut single "Hollow Moon (Bad Wolf)" has exploded into the Top 5 at alternative radio where it currently sits at #3.  

Following a whirlwind two-year world tour in support of Megalithic Symphony, AWOLNATION withdrew into the depths of the California coastline to construct the sophomore effort. A culmination of the years following the release of the debut album, the 14-track Run, was written, performed and produced entirely by musical architect Aaron Bruno. The end result is a finely tuned musical masterwork that is at times, and all at once, sprawling, atmospheric, exuberant, earnest and refined with moments of a signature aggressive unease. CraveOnline stated, "
these sounds are designed to stick in your head, and they succeed in their purpose, gorgeously," with Alternative Press calling Run "the first AWOLNATION album of the rest of your life." 
Released in 2011, the band's gold-certified debut album Megalithic Symphony was an alternative music revelation that became an astonishing success resonating with fans around the world. The album holds a number of long-running Billboard chart positions including 146 weeks on the Independent Albums chart, 111 weeks on the Billboard Top200, 105 weeks on the Top Rock Albums chart and has topped the Heatseekers Albums chart several times over. Their hit single "Sail," a redefining global anthem, is certified 6X Platinumin the U.S., and is the second longest charting song in the Billboard Hot 100's 55-year history amassing hundreds of millions of video views and streaming plays online while charting around the world. Following the success of "Sail," the band would go on to have two more Top 10 charting alternative singles, "Not Your Fault" and "Kill Your Heroes," having sold over a million downloads combined. Since the release of their debut, AWOLNATION has performed countless shows to millions of fans across the globe.
DATE                                       VENUE                                               CITY/STATE

September 6                             Fashion Meets Music Festival                    Columbus, OH * new show 
September 19                           Kaaboo Music Festival                               San Diego, CA
AWOLNation is a fave of Jotells.

Chunkpipe - Buffalo NY

Anybody who missed the 10/11/14 show missed a good one! Lots of people, lots of chunk debris and tons of fun! Don't miss the next Chunkathon on 3/14/15!


    Thank You Mike! http://www.chunkpipe.com/


This blogpost is dedicated to Jeff and his brother, Mike Borycki.