Ever since I heard Cream when I was a little kid, the three-piece band has always intrigued me. To be able to get all that intensity and volume with just a trio is something spectacular. There is a new three piece band on my radar and I’m really digging what they are up to. Allow me to introduce you to Killer Hill, a new trio featuring two members of Helmet – guitarist/vocalist DanBeeman and bassist Dave Case – along with drummer Pete Beeman whose resumé includes Amphetamine Reptile greats Guzzard. These guys pack one hell of a punch. Taking their cues from bands like Mastodon, Red Fang and Helmet, it’s no wonder that Killer Hill’s new EP, Frozen Head rocks. The six songs on the EP are brute alt rock force. The riffs are chunky and groovy while the rhythm section grinds and pummels. The first song released “Bent” is a groovy/thrashy fun time that live will be a beast. Killer Hill is a pretty rad band and I’m very intrigued to hear what else they do!
One band from the 80’s that I’ve always enjoyed is Australia’s INXS. I remember being a little kid watching MTV and seeing the video for “Need You Tonight” and really liking the song and wanting a leather jacket like Michael Hutchence had in the video. Their album KICK, is one of the best of the 1980’s and it still holds up quite well today. That album produced so many hit songs (“Need You Tonight, “New Sensation,” and “Never Tear Us Apart.”) and one in particular “Devil Inside” has always stuck out to me. Released as a single in Feb of 1988, it hit number 2 on the Billboard 100 for two weeks. The video for the song was directed by Joel Schumacher (The Lost Boys, Flatliners, Falling Down, Batman Forever). This song is incredible and it’s one of those that should always be played loudly.
It’s been a while since I did one of these and this one is pretty damn awesome. Earlier this year, this dream tour came to me when Two Minutes To Late Night started their series where 2 bands cover each other. The first one was Every Time I Die taking on a Cave In song (Youth Overrided from Antenna) and Cave In taking on an Every Time I Die song (Moor from From Parts Unknown). When that was announced it got me thinking that those two bands should tour together. Then I started seeing comments from other bands and Riley Breckenridge from Thrice was super stoked on these covers and that’s when I had the idea. Dream Tour and Set List featuring Thrice, Every Time I Die and Cave In. Imagine the possibilities of these three awesome bands on one bill for a whole tour! So much awesomeness happening with this line up. Now the set lists are where it gets interesting and tricky. And as always I set up some parameters to make it more fun.
1: Where would you want to see the show
2: What is the order/set lengths of the bands
3: What line up of the band would it be (If necessary)
4: Set List (In order of how the set should go)
1) Hollywood Palladium
2) Headliner= Thrice Direct Support= Every Time I Die Opener= Cave In
3) All Current Lineups of each band
4) Set Lists:
01) Juggernaut 02) Lanterna 03) Trepanning 04) Halo Of Flies 05) Joy Opposites 06) Retina Sees Rewind 07) Big Riff 08) Youth Overrided 09) Dark Driving 10) Sing My Loves
Every Time I Die:
01) Dark Distance 02) I Suck (Blood) 03) Depressionista 04) Glitches 05) Planet Shit 06) Underwater Bimbos From Outer Space 07) Wanderlust 08) Bored Stiff 09) INRIhab 10) White Void 11) C++ (Love Will Get You Killed) 12) Post-Bordem 13) It Remembers 14) AWOL 15) The Coin Has A Say 16) Romeo A Go-Go 17) We’rewolf 18) Ebolarama 19) Thing With Feathers 20) Map Change
01) The Color Of The Sky 02) Scavengers 03) Under A Killing Moon 04) The Grey 05) Hurricane 06) Silhouette 07) All The World Is Mad 08) Promises 09) Don’t Tell And We Won’t Ask 10) Like Moths To Flame 11) Summer Set Fire To The Rain 12) In Exile 13) Just Breathe 14) Blood Clots And Black Holes 15) Robot Soft Exorcism 16) The Long Defeat 17) The Earth Will Shake 18) Paper Tigers 19) The Artist In The Ambulance 20) Come All You Weary 21) Yellow Belly 22) Hold Fast Hope 23) Red Sky 24) Beggars 25) Black Honey
I have a huge bone to pick with bands these days. There’s a plethora of things I could discuss here but I really want to focus on one in particular. And that one aspect is bands begging for money these days. Whether it’s crowd funding or straight up using go fund me’s to get money. It’s absolutely disgusting.
Crowd Funding your album is a tricky one. On one hand you labels that aren’t giving money to record or the amounts are limited. So now you have bands resorting to crowd funding. The ones that really put thought into this process are the ones that put together the packages that make it a pre-sale purchase and that does make sense and hold merit. At least you are getting something out of it in the end. Provided it gets completed and released accordingly. There was that whole debacle about Pledge Music and the CEO taking the money. I’ve contributed to a couple crowd funded albums but, the ones I did contribute to were straight up pre-sales. If you are a band and need to raise lets say $50,000 towards the whole cost of your album, perhaps you might want to think about getting a job. Relying on other people who already spend their hard earned money on your band be it concert tickets, records, merch, etc is downright wrong. It’s taking advantage plain and simple. I think back a few months ago to when Dino from Fear Factory set up a gofundme to help “finish” the new Fear Factory album. He needed $25,000 to get studio time to record drums, finish the mix & mastering, and some other things. The money was funded and the album was finished but, it’s so lackluster that it makes it seem like a waste of money. And were there any perks for donating? Nope, not a single thing. Not even a downloadable version of the album. Again another example of begging.
My other issue are bands that use go fund me and are straight up begging for money. If you can’t afford to go on tour, GET A JOB AND SAVE MONEY TO AFFORD TO GO. Don’t be asking people to give you money. That’s the upmost of lazy and pathetic. Offering lame incentives isn’t worth it either. Asking people to support you is one thing, begging for money is not ok. If you have to resort to this practice and you are in a band, you should really take a look in the mirror and have a talk with yourselves. If you can’t afford it, than this isn’t the place for you. I know labels don’t have tour support these days, especially for small bands but, don’t be taking advantage of your fans or family. It’s not a good look and it carries over to the rest of the bands that really need help. There are plenty of places people can go to earn money but, it seems like people just want the easy way out. Seriously, if you can’t afford to do something wait till you can. Begging is sad and pathetic and like I mentioned, it makes those of us in this look bad. It’s taking advantage plain and simple!
It’s come to a point with all these “crowd funding” tools that it’s out of hand. I understand in certain cases where it’s necessary. For example, the band Russian Circles recently had their gear stolen and a go fund me page was set up after it was discovered that the insurance had lapsed so this was a last resort option. Not only did they pass their goal, they did it in a day. The cause was a good one as they had no choice but to do this. If it’s a good cause like helping cover their bills after a medial procedure, funeral costs, or things like that, I can understand. But to be straight up begging cause you are too lazy or stupid to save money or get a job that pays well, that’s on you. I will not stand by watching people feel like they are entitled to something they aren’t. Get off your asses and work! Get a job and save the money you will need. Be smart about it. Don’t be lazy and pathetic. Do the right thing!
The 1990’s produced some of the best music videos ever. Without a doubt there was a sense of true art and endless possibilities of things to try out and boundaries to push. One video that comes to mind when thinking about all that is “Come To Daddy” by Aphex Twin. This video is one of the best ever and it’s an absolute masterwork. The video was directed by Chris Cunningham (who’s done videos for Bjork, Placebo, and Portishead). Interestingly the video was shot on the same council estate that Stanley Kubrick filmed many scenes for A Clockwork Orange. A video like this to accompany a song that is quite unique would need to stand out and that it does. It’s artsy and different while at the same time very unsettling and disturbing at times. It’s also worth noting that Aphex Twin mastermind Richard D. James wasn’t thrilled with the reception the song got. So much so that after its successful release, James claimed that he removed the record from circulation for one week, hoping to prevent it from reaching number one; it peaked at 36. Even with all that, this video and song are still one of the best of the 90’s.
So many great songs came out this week along with the phenomenal new album Radical, by Every Time I Die (which is this weeks ALBUM YOU MUST HEAR at the bottom of the list). In this edition of New Music Friday we have new jams from Nvision, Centershift, Jerry Cantrell, Silent Planet, Arch Enemy, The Lurking Fear, See You Space Cowboy HEALTH & Poppy and Mastodon. Check them out and let me know what your favorite is! And don’t forget to listen to the new EVERY TIME I DIE album!!!
Nvision- Fake Friends:
Jerry Cantrell- Siren Song:
Silent Planet- Anhedonia:
Arch Enemy- Deciever, Deceiver:
Health & Poppy- Dead Flowers:
The Lurking Fear (feat. members of At The Gates)- Death Reborn:
See You Space Cowboy- The End To A Brief Moment Of Lasting Intamacy:
Radical is one hell of a way to describe the new Every Time I Die album of the same name. Throughout their career, Every Time I Die have continued to get better and better with each release. Like a fine wine or scotch, the older these guys get, the more ferocious and unrelenting they get. This being the band’s ninth studio album, the absolute urgency felt throughout the album is unparalleled. To top it all off too, there are 16 blistering tracks on this one and the moment it ends, you are compelled to start it over.
Tracks 1-16 are phenomenal. The riffs, beats, bass lines, vocals, lyrics, and melodies are some of the best ETID have come up with. There are moments throughout the album that hark back to previous albums like The Big Dirty and Hot Damn but, there is no denying that these new songs push through what they’ve done in the past. I could go through the album track by track but as I’ve said many times before, that would just ruin it for you, the listener. Instead what I will do is say that there isn’t one track on this album that doesn’t belong or feels out of place. The poetic nature and introspective lyrics of singer Keith Buckley are striking and vulnerable in a different way than on Low Teens. His ability to tell stories and make you think while at the same time rocking out is something that not many people can do. Then you put that together with the crushing riffs of Andy Williams and Jordan Buckley plus the pummeling rhythm section of Steve Micciche and Clayton “Goose” Holyoak and you have the recipe for one of the best bands of the century. Radical also features guest appearances by Josh Scogin from ’68 and Andy Hull from Manchester Orchestra, adding another color to these songs. To top it all off is the stunning production from Will Putney (who also helmed Low Teens).
This album is one that will hold up for years to come. Their ability to expand their sound and take risks only make this album stronger. There is a polarizing sensibility to the record but also a delicate tinge that allows the listener to really soak it all in. You’d think that after over 20 years of being a band and all the miles on the road that they’d slow down but, you’re totally wrong. There is no stopping Every Time I Die and Radical proves that!
Since the turn of the century when they formed, Mastodon have been one of the best bands to come out. Their evolution as a band is one that is astounding. Had they come out in a different era, they’d probably be one of the biggest bands. Now in 2021, the guys in Mastodon are gearing up to release their ninth studio album, Hushed and Grim. They’ve already released a couple tracks ahead of its release and now they have dropped one of their most jazzy tracks ever with “Sickle and Peace.” There’s a psychedelic doomy jazz sense to this song. It’s one of those songs that in the context of the album will make more sense especially since Mastodon is one of those bands that make “albums.” I’d love to hear this song live at some point during an upcoming tour as I feel like this is going to be one hell of an epic track live.
For the past couple months I’ve been writing about KLAE and his upcoming album Stomp Out Hate, Love, Repeat. KLAE is a very diverse musician that excels in drums and percussion. His ability to shift his styles to compliment different genres makes him quite exceptional. With over 20 years of experience be it playing, writing, recording and more, it’s the dedication that shows through in his music. KLAE said “In the last few years I’ve learned that everything has a wide spectrum of perspective. We can choose to see the rainbow of colors that surrounds us or we can choose to ignore it. We have to make the choice within ourselves everyday to stop the hate and set a better example.” Armed with that mindset and a plethora of rhythms, KLAE is working to enact change with each beat. In today’s society, having music and artists like this shows the care and concern that is missing.
A couple weeks back I made a very bold statement that, “2021 is the year of Quicksand” and last night cemented that for me. I’ve long wanted to see Quicksand live since I first heard Slip way back when and now, that wish came true. Seeing Walter Schreifels, Sergio Vega, Alan Cage rock out was superb and the icing on the cake of them having Cave In/Mutoid Man/etc guitarist/vocalist Stephen Brodsky as their second guitarist just made it all something spectacular.
The moment the lights went down and the projections on the backdrop started, the frenzy of the crowd began to rev up and the second the first note of “Inversion” from their new and absolutely killer album, Distant Populations started, everyone knew, it was ON!!!. Plowing down the audience with the four songs off their new album immediately was tremendous. Just when you thought they were going to play the whole album (which they did) they burst into “Fazer” and there was no looking back. The setlist for the night was so good. Playing all of Distant Populations along with choice cuts from Slip, Manic Compression and Interiors, Quicksand could do no wrong. They even did a wonderful job covering My Bloody Valentine’s “Don’t Ask Why” and now I want to just listen to their version from now on. Hearing songs like the ones above along with “Colossus,” “Thorn In My Side,” “Dine Alone,” “Brown Gargantuan,” “Phase 90,” “Unfulfilled” and so many more was like being on cloud 9. There was no chance I could stand still. It’s a good thing I haven’t cut my hair in a while so I could head bang along like a crazy person. Watching Quicksand live is something everyone in a band should do. They had so much energy emitting from the stage it was contagious. You could tell these guys really enjoy playing. The chemistry of the four guys on stage was astounding. You can tell that Walter, Sergio and Alan are a tight unit. They play off each other so well. Adding Stephen Brodsky to the touring lineup was a perfect idea. His playing style and abilities really fit great in Quicksand. His mannerisms on stage too are so good. I really wish he could be a permanent member of Quicksand. I can only imagine how awesome the next album would be if he were a part of it.
Also playing this evening was Narrow Head and Creeps. Both bands had a very 90’s driven style with the latter sounding a bit more like Brand New. Both bands had solidly good sets and brought a lot of energy. The audience showed up early and that seemed to have a feeling that harked back to the days when people would show up to support all the bands on the bill. It’s always a nice thing to see bands like Quicksand bring out younger/up and coming bands on tour. It’s great to give them the opportunity to get their music out to as many people as possible.
Quicksand is the type of band that influences and inspires anyone that listens. Personally, I couldn’t even wind down when I got home from the show. That’s how good it was. Quicksand is a band that is essential listening and should be in your collection. I can’t wait for the next time Quicksand comes through Los Angeles. What a great show.
Quicksand Set List:
01) Inversion 02) Lightning Field 03) Colossus 04) Missle Command 05) Fazer 06) Thorn In My Side 07) Phase 90 08) Head To Wall 09) Don’t Ask Why (My Bloody Valentine Cover) 10) Under The Screw 11) Unfulfilled 12) Too Official 13) Illuminant 14) Warm And Low 15) The Philosopher 16) Compacted Infinity 17) Rodan 18) Omission 19) Brown Gargantuan 20) Katakana 21) Delusional 22) Dine Alone 23) Brushed