Tag: Nirvana

Comprised of Titus Brown, Matt Lambert and Jim Crook, the Atlanta, GA-based indie rock All The Saints can trace their origins back to Alabama, where they were raised on a diet of Crimson Tide/SEC football and loud “college rock.” In the early aughts, Brown, Lambert and Crook relocated to Atlanta, where they were signed by Touch & Go Records; in fact, they have the distinction of being the last band signed to the label before it shut down daily operations.

Over the next decade, the members of All The Saints honed their craft while developing an expansive, explosive sound, which made their live show a must-see; however, over the past few years, live gigs became infrequent. Interestingly, the folks at Chunklet Industries contacted the Atlanta-based act and suggested that the band should work on a full-length album with Jason Kingsland, an acclaimed producer, who has worked with Deerhunter, Band of Horses and others.

Slated for release next month, the Atlanta-based indie rock trio’s long-awaited third full-length album Look Like You’re Going Somewhere was recorded over the course of three days at Maze Studios, and the album reportedly at parts finds the band sounding like Spacemen 3, The Jesus Lizard, Sonic Youth and Sleep simultaneously — all while capturing their live sound.

“Creak,” Look Like You’re Going Somewhere‘s expansive and thunderous lead single is a smoldering and murky track centered by a a serpentine bass line, a slow, driving rhythm and shimmering guitars, snarled and howled vocals before ending in scorching feedback reminiscent of Nirvana’s “Radio Friendly Unit Shifter” — but at its core is a uneasy, sinister vibe.

 

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New Video: Two from Grunge Legends L7

Currently comprised of founding members Donita Sparks (vocals, guitar) and Suzi Gardner (guitar, vocals) along with Jennifer Finch (bass) and Demetra Plakas (drums), the acclaimed and pioneering, Los Angeles-based grunge act L7 can trace their origins back to 1985, a full year after Gardner had contributed backing vocals to Black Flag’s “Slip It In.”

Once Sparks and Gardner formed the band, they were added by Finch and Roy Koutsky (drums). Koutsky left shortly after and was briefly replaced by Anne Anderson (drums) in 1988. After Anderson left the band, Plakas became the band’s permanent drummer. Although they formed Rock for Choice, a pro-choice women’s rights group that was supported by the likes of Pearl Jam, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Nirvana, and Rage Against the Machine, they’re best known for their third album, 1992’s Butch Vig-produced Bricks Are Heavy, which featured their seminal track (and smash hit) “Pretend We’re Dead.” “Pretend We’re Dead” spent 13 weeks on the US Alternative Charts, peaking at #8 and reached #21 on the UK Singles Chart.

After the release of 1994’s Hungry for Stink, which was supported by that year’s Lollapalooza tour with Smashing Pumpkins and The Breeders, the band went through a number of lineup changes: Finch left the band during the recording of 1997’s The Beauty Process: Triple Platinum, an album that featured bass playing by Sparks and Greta Brinkman; however, Belly’s Gail Greenwood joined the band.

1999’s Slap-Happy didn’t chart on either side of the Atlantic, and sometime after the release of that album, the Los Angeles-based grunge band went through yet another lineup changes with Greenwood leaving the band to be replaced by Stone Fox’s Janis Tanaka, who later played bass in Pink’s and Bif Naked’s backing bands.

By 2001, the members of L7 weren’t touring and were on an indefinite hiatus. During that time Sparks formed a new band, Donita Sparks and The Stellar Moments while Finch was a member of punk rock act The Shocker. Simultaneously during that period, Sparks was working on a documentary on the band, which was rumored to have a 2014 release date. And interestingly enough, by the end of 2014 the band announced that they would reuniting featuring the lineup with which they achieved their biggest success — Sparks, Gardner, Finch and Plakas.

The reunited L7 toured Europe and North America with a number of stops across the international circuit in 2015 including Germany’s Rock am Ring, Riot Fest stops in Denver and Chicago, and Austin’s Fun Fun Fun Festival.  The Sarah Price-directed L7 documentary, L7: Pretend We’re Dead was released in 2016 while the band was on a busy tour schedule throughout both 2016 and 2017.

Building upon the growing buzz surrounding the reunited band, the members of the Los Angeles-based grunge outfit released “Dispatch from Mar-a-Lago,” their first new song in almost 18 years in September 2017. They followed that up with “I Came Back to Bitch,” which was released in February 2018. The band’s recently released seventh album Scatter the Rats is the first album from the Los Angeles-based grunge outfit in 20 years and from album singles “Burn Baby” and “Stadium West,” the new album is sort of a return to form: scuzzy and distorted power chords, thunderous drumming, snarled lyrics and rousingly anthemic hooks. And interestingly enough, both singles reveal that the members of L7 have had a massive influence on contemporary indie rock — you can hear L7’s influence in the work of JOVM mainstays The Coathangers, Sharkmuffin, Dream Wife and others. 

New Video: Dublin’s Submotile Releases a Lysergic “120 Minutes”-like Visual for “Eastern Sky Sundown”

Comprised of Irish-born, Dublin-based Michael Farren (guitar) and Italian-born, Dublin-based Daniela Angione (vocals), the Dublin-based indie act Submotile initially began as an experimental, ambient project. The project’s sound evolved considerably when Angione began to add vocals to Farren’s guitar experiments, which eventually resulted in their first proper collaborative track “Signs of My Melody.”

The duo’s debut EP We’re Losing The Light was released to significant interest in shoegazer circles. Farren and Angione were encouraged to pursue their long-held dream — writing and recording a proper full-length album. Released digitally a few weeks ago, the duo’s full-length debut Ghosts Fade on Skylines finds the duo blurring the lines between shoegaze, noise rock, ambient, post-rock and pop — all while drawing from Slowdive, Warpaint, Smashing Pumpkins, Swans, Spiritualized, Nirvana and others. “We wanted an album that ebbed and flowed, with nine diverse songs that complimented each other without being too different from each other. The idea behind the music is to express the dualism of warmth over hostility, passion over frustration, all these dynamics projected onto a sense of hope and renaissance. I’m not sure if we succeeded, but hopefully it works,” Daniela Angione says in press notes.

“Having quit music in 2009 due to the frustration of never having been able to translate the sounds in my head to tape, Ghosts Fade on Skylines was recorded during a wonderful period of rebirth and rejuvenation, a period where I was discovering all the great new music that was out there, whilst simultaneously finding out just how far music production technology had evolved,” Michael Farren explains in press notes. “This evolution allowed us to come that bit closer to the sound in our heads, enabling us to labor over songs, adding hundreds of tracks and experimenting with samples, guitar pedals and tones – many a happy hour was whiled away tracking this music. If someone out there enjoys listening to it a fraction as much as we enjoyed making it, then to me it’ll be a success.”

Interestingly, the album’s latest single, the immersive and enveloping “Eastern Sky Sundown” is centered by layers upon layers of buzzing and reverb-drenched guitars, four-on-four-like drumming, a rousingly anthemic hook and Angione’s ethereal vocals floating over the lysergic and oceanic mix — and while bearing an uncanny resemblance to The Jesus and Mary Chain and Smashing Pumpkins, the track bristles with the newfound self-assured of a band that found their sound. Unsurprisingly, the recently released video for “Eastern Sky Sundown” features appropriately psychedelic imagery while recalling 120 Minutes-era MTV alt rock.

Look for a limited edition run of Ghosts Fade on Skyline through Midsummer Madness Records this summer.

Over the past 15-16 months or so, I’ve written about the Brooklyn-based JOVM mainstays, Russian Baths. And with the release of their debut single “Ambulance,” the act comprised of Luke Koz, Jess Ress, Evan Gill Smith and Jeff Widner quickly received attention locally and elsewhere for a sound that the band has described as nodding at Big Black, 70s space rock, Big Muff and British post punk among others. The band released their debut EP Penance last year through Good Eye Records and from EP singles “What’s In Your Basement,” “Slenderman” and “Poolhouse,” the Brooklyn-based JOVM mainstays established themselves for brooding 90s alt rock 120 Minutes-era MTV-like sound.

Building upon a growing profile, the band will be releasing their full-length debut later this year, and the album’s first, official single “Parasite” may arguably be the one of the most muscular and grunge-like songs of their growing catalog, as the song is centered around distortion pedal-drenched power chords, thundering drumming, a mosh pit friendly hook and male-female harmonizing within a tried-and-true, alt rock, alternating quiet, loud, quiet song structure. And while bringing Nirvana and others to mind, the song has a deeply unsettling and violent air, capturing someone on the verge of destroying themselves.

“Have you ever had an insect burrow into your brain and force you to drown yourself? Cured a headache with a hand grenade?” queries Koz, aptly reconstructing the same violent energy converted to guitar-driven noise rock on the single. “This song is about these legitimate questions.”

New Audio: Seattle’s Versing Releases A Woozy and Pummeling New Single

Comprised of Daniel Salas, Graham Baker, Kirby Lochner and Max Keyes, the Seattle-based quartet Versing will be releasing their full-length debut 1000 through Hardly Art Records on May 3, 2019 and the album’s latest single, the woozy “Offering” is centered around whirring feedback, pummeling drumming and an infectious pop-leaning hooks. And while reminding me a bit of Nirvana’s “Radio Friendly Unit Shifter,” and Thee Oh Sees, the song as the band’s Daniel Salas explains in press notes is ” a fantastical song about traveling through a mystical portal to stop an encroaching force of evil, and the feedback is like the whirring sound the portal makes. Really it’s about making the ultimate sacrifice for the benefit of others, and thinking about what you’d want to be remembered for after you die.”

New Video: Los Angeles’ Numb.er Releases a Blistering Punk Rock-Inspired Single

Last year, I wrote a bit about  Numb.er.  Led by its Los Angeles, CA-based creative mastermind Jeff Fribourg, who’s perhaps best known as a founding member of psych rock/kraut rock band Froth, and as you may recall, Fribourg’s latest project can trace its origins to a deep love of synthesizers that began when he started experimenting with them while with Froth; however, with his latest project, Fribourg and company mesh elements of punk rock, post-punk, noise rock and shoegaze. 

Goodbye, Numb.er’s full-length debut was released last year through felte records, and album singles “Numerical Depression” and “A Memory Stained” established the project’s genre-bending sound and approach — with “Numerical Depression” featuring elements of 77 era punk, early 80s post-punk and Nirvana, while  the murky and moody “A Memory Stained” meshed 60s psych pop and synth-led New Wave in a way that brought TOY to mind. “Again,” Goodbye’s latest single was centered around a decidedly minimalist approach featuring angular distortion pedal-fueled power chords, a motorik-like groove, shouted lyrics, blasts of analog synth, and a rousingly anthemic, mosh pit friendly hook. Sonically speaking, the song is a seamless synthesis of 77 era punk and early 80s post-punk that deceptively sounds as though it could have been released around 1981 or so.

New Audio: Australia’s Hockey Dad Releases an Anthemic 90s Alt Rock Inspired Song

Comprised of Zach Stephenson (guitar, vocals) and Billy Fleming (drums), the Windang, New South Wales, Australia indie rock duo Hockey Dad are lifelong friends, who grew up two doors apart — and as a result, they’re best friends first, bandmates second. With the release of their full-length debut 2017’s Boronia, the duo of Stephenson and Fleming quickly achieved a national and international profile for crafting infectious power pop: the duo wound up embarking on a sold out tour of their native Australia that included a number of shows with Dune Rats and the critically applauded indie act Wavves, some extensive touring across North America with stops at SXSW and elsewhere, before touring across the UK and Europe. 

Hockey Dad’s latest effort, 2018’s sophomore effort, the John Goodmanson-produced Blend Inn was recorded at Seattle’s renowned Robert Lang Studios, where Foo Fighters, Soundgarden, Death Cab For Cutie, Alice in Chains and NirvanaNirvana (who most notably recorded their last song ever there) all recorded seminal material. Interestingly, the Australian duo’s sophomore effort is a much more introspective effort. Blend Inn is the part of your head that you want to go to when you’re overseas and wishing you were back home, it’s within,” Hockey Dad’s Billy Fleming says. “We’re always just trying to be comfortable and semi blending in, so it’s the name we gave to that place you zone out to.”

Thematically, the album is centered around the trials, tribulations and uncertainties of young adulthood — but from the perspective of two young people, who have had an expanded mindset and much more experience in the world, while still retaining the playfulness and enormous hooks that won them international attention. Building upon a growing profile, the duo will continue a busy slate of national and international touring, including a West Coast Stateside tour through February. You can check out the tour dates below. 

In the meantime, anthemic album single “I Wanna Be Everybody” is centered around infectious, crowd pleasing hooks, thunderous drumming and even bigger power chords within an alternating soft, loud, soft song structure. Sonically, the song brings to mind 90s alt rock — in particular, I’m reminded of Local H and others.  

 

Late last year, I wrote about the Boston-based alt rock quintet Aneurysm, and as you may recall, the band formed back in 2014 and since then, they’ve developed a reputation for relentless touring and realizing a handful of 7 inch vinyl releases. Their long-awaited full-length debut Awareness is slated for a February 1, 2019 release through Tor Johnson Records, and the album, as the band’s Dan Bahto explains in an interview with No Echo, the material on the album is sort off a collection of things they had been working on since they started.

Awareness‘ first single was the pummeling, mosh pit friendly “St. E.” Centered round enormous power chords, thunderous drumming and howled vocals, the track brought Nirvana, METZ and others to mind. The album’s second and latest single “Newport” continues on a similar vein as its predecessor while rooted in a melodicism that brings Social Distortion to mind; in fact, the song is centered around world-weary and hard-fought reflections on sex, drugs, cops, death and rock ‘n’ roll.  The song kicks ass but as I turn 40 in a couple of months, it has a sobering air: it’s full of the recognition of that you’re getting older; that the scene is slowly phasing you out; that with each passing day you’re looking at your mortality in the mirror.

 

Late last year, I wrote about the Southern California-based trio Warish, and as you may recall the trio which features founding members Riley Hawk (guitar, vocals) and Bruce McDonnell (drums) formed earlier this year, when its founding duo wanted to try their hand at something a bit more distinct than they’d previously done. “We wanted to do simpler riffs and a fun live show,” Hawk explains in press notes. “A little more punk, a little bit of grunge… a little evil-ish.” Their sound reportedly draws from a variety of things — early Butthole Surfers, Scratch AcidIncesticide-era NirvanaStatic Age-era Misfits — and with “Fight,” the first single off their self-titled debut EP, the trio quickly make their presence known as the song is centered around Hawk’s effects-laden vocals, enormous grunge rock meet thrash punk power chords, pummeling drumming, mosh pit friendly hooks and an aggressively sleazy, Troma Films-like vibe.

Warish’s self-titled debut EP is slated for a February 19, 2019 release through RidingEasy Records, and the EP’s latest single “Human Being” is a mosh pit friendly ripper centered around explosive power chords, thundering drums and howled vocals. Sonically speaking, the track recalls The Colour and the Shape and One by One-era Foo Fighters — but with a raw, gritty feel.

 

Perhaps best known for stints drumming for Shilpa Ray, WALTZ and Lola Pistola, Robert Preston Collum relocated to Los Angeles for a change of scenery, and began his solo recording project Pink Mexico. Shortly after relocating to Los Angeles, Collum self-released his Pink Mexico debut pnik mxeico back in June 2013. The album attached the attention of Austin, TX-based Fleeting Youth Records, who re-released pnik mxeico the following December.

Preston then relocated back to Brooklyn during the fall of 2014, where released a split 7 inch with Los Angeles-based indie band SunLikeDrugs and a 12 inch vinyl pressing of pnik mexico by the Bordeaux, France-based label Big Tomato Records. And with a growing national and international profile, Collum caught the attention of Burger Records, who signed him and released his sophomore Pink Mexico fool, an effort that Collum said was written in window-less 10×10 rooms between Los Angeles and Brooklyn, reportedly fueled by nasty hangovers, cheap coffee and cigarettes. Interestingly, over the past year or so, Pink Mexico expanded to into a fully fledged band with the addition of Grady Walker (bass) and Ian Everall (drums), who toured with Collum during the tour to support fool and contributed to Pink Mexico’s forthcoming, third full-length album Dump, which is slated for a March 1, 2019 release on cassette and digitally through Burger Records and Little Dickman Records.

Written and recorded during 2017 and 2018 at Civil Defense Studios with Jeremy Scott, who has worked with Vivian Girls and These Are PowersDump is the first Pink Mexico album as a fully fledged band and the album’s latest single “High Dive” is a grungy take on surf rock, featuring fuzzy and distorted power chords and a mosh pit friendly hook. Sonically, the song manages to hint at The Jesus and Mary ChainIncesticide-era Nirvana, Melvins and Foo Fighters while clocking in at a little over 2 minutes — or in other words, a fast and furious ripper that’s absolutely necessary.