Sunday, December 31, 2006

Wampus and FUZE Battle of the Bands

Wampus Multimedia will sponsor the FUZE Battle of the Bands on Saturday, April 28,
2007 at the Sportsplex in Winchester, Virginia. FUZE will feature amazing independent
bands, brilliant songwriters, and outrageous performers.

If you think that's you, submit your best song to FUZE in one of three ways:

MySpace: Refer the FUZE team to a song at your MySpace page.

Email: Email an mp3 of your song and a link to your Web site.

Snail mail: Mail a CD of your song with a press kit to FUZE, c/o Wampus Multimedia,
4 Weems Lane, #300, Winchester, VA 22601. Materials received by mail cannot be
returned.

Submissions to FUZE are free, one per artist. and will be accepted until March 16.
On March 30, FUZE will announce the five finalists who will compete on the FUZE
stage.

http://wampus.com/fuze

~|~

Monday, December 18, 2006

Music Industry Still Springing Leaks

The Chicago Tribune has an interesting article on the early release of bands' upcoming music online. Not simply uploading and downloading the mp3s after they've become commercially available, but the leaks that hit the Net before the albums hit the stores or radio stations.

Everybody wants it, but nobody can get it. And in a music world in which control is king and anticipation is the doting queen, modern technology and music leaking are the ultimate spies. People who want new music the minute it becomes available and Internet-savvy listeners who will give it to them no matter the risk have forced the recording industry to fight battles over regulation and content management that make its infamous tussles with Napster seem like a walk in the park.

While the article points out that the sound quality of these leaked tunes rarely lives up to the quality of the CD version, the wee pirates say they don't really give a shit and will keep downloading tunes until their fingers and/or ears fall off.

Naturally, the only ones with their panties in a wad over this leaking are the Big Boys. Oddly enough, Indie labels are reporting that this kind of activity actually increases sales of their releases. Strange how that works, isn't it?

Anyway, cool article. Read the whole thing here: Leaks of new songs difficult to plug.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

THE PIGS for Peace

Alt rockers, THE PIGS, are offering their tongue-in-cheek track, “I’ve Got Santa Claus,” as a holiday download this month.

The track, which tells the tale of Santa hiding out until there’s Peace on Earth, is available as a free download, or, for .99 cents as a donation toward world peace, with all net proceeds going to UnitedForPeace.org. As a further incentive to buy the download, all those making a donation by December 25 will have a chance at winning one of two Apple iPods. Winners will be announced on January 1, 2007.

Cough up that .99 and if you can't afford that ... spread some peace, love and understanding. Now, dammit!

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Cover Me - Free MP3 Downloads

OK, a little complicated but bear with me because this will be so worth your time if you're into bizarre cover songs. If not, flip on ever to iTunes and buy some shit or something.

Kotog has awakened me to the oftentimes sketchy but always worth a look blog Copy, Right?, which is wielded by a woman who apparently scours the underbelly of the web for strange covers of mostly strange songs. (And in a frightening note, she says that complete strangers send her these things, too.) I won't link to the downloads - one reason being there are too many and another is that her notes on the songs are as good as the music.

Yum!Yum!ORANGE "Don't Worry, Be Happy" (Bobby McFerrin cover)

I honestly never thought I'd post a cover if this, one of my most-hated songs EVER, but dammit if those Japanese ska bands don't charm my socks right off everytime.

Little Shepherd "Beate Ausem Block (Jenny from the Block)" (J.Lo cover)

Wow. This is like a terrible car crash from which I inexplicably can't turn away.


Without these tidbits, I could not in good conscience provide a trusting reader with a Bobby McFerrin download. Free or even if they paid you to download it.

Visit Copy, Right?. Hurry. The songs sometimes have short shelf lives and you're not going to find this kind of aural stimulation just anywhere. Don't tell your mom I sent you.

Friday, December 15, 2006

All That Xmas Jazz

Mark Sabbatini of All About Jazz has offered up some links to sites where you can download - freely for the most part - some holiday music so rancid even its creators have disavowed most copyright or connection to it. Which makes the songs into instant cult classics. Natch.

Bongobells offers about 50 mostly out-of-circulation albums ...

Many of the albums are discontinued, colossal commercial failures and other projects doomed to obscurity before digital capturing allowed them to be elevated to cult-like status. Generally the album's title and lead performer(s) are about all the information available without exhaustive research, but the sites provide enough description for listeners to know what they're getting before committing bandwidth to them. All of the songs are in unprotected MP3 format, but many are also likely in a legal “grey” area at best. But since eBay seems to be about the only way to get the actual CDs, you probably aren't starving anybody out of their Christmas dinner money.


Unfortunately, the Bongobells have nag screens between downloads and other unpretty wait times, but if you browse and find a lot that you want, you can get a one-month membership for the price of a J-Lo CD and download them .zip quick.

Enjoy.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Death of Musick

Here's a thought-provoking article from Szplug of the Digital Journal that contemplates "The Future of Music." You've probably read most of these points before, but they're not often written as well.

Szplug apparently stayed awake through the documentary "Money For Nothing: Behind the Big Business of Music" and make the info available for you. Read and comment. I think you probably know my view by now (the faster the Musick Industry goes down, the sooner we'll get decent music in the stores and on the radio.)

DIE DIE Big 5!

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Punk Legend


Bill Halen, San Francisco punk legend and current member of The Wrong Impressions, makes good with a fan and a Heineken after a recent gig. I love the man, but when he steals my girl friends and my beer, he's looking for a throw down. Punk legend? Or just punk? We'll decide after he buys the next round.

Free Download: Six Parts Seven

Indie zine Filter Magazine has a review and download from Six Parts Seven:

Sounding like the soundtrack to the best film never made, Ohio’s Six Parts Seven blend the pitch perfect indie music with brass and clarinets to create a sleepy instrumentals full of wonder.

Doesn't that sound sweet? Six Parts Seven is a new album coming out in January called "Casually Smashed To Pieces." You can download the single "Stolen Moments" from Suicide Squeeze. Enjoy!

~|~

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Doctor Sparkles - Doctor Demented?

Have you ever asked yourself "Who is gonna step up and become the heir to Tiny Tim?"

Maybe you haven't, but the real Junkie Jones has in a review for Sparkles "Sail Away". A must for ukulele fans.

~|~

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Salty Pirates Free Download

Ha! And you thought that Kelly Clarkson thing was the real deal. Gotcha! Try this, as recommended by Subculture Magazine:

SALTY PIRATES are from Halmstad in Sweden. They met during High School and started to play together about four years ago. The main aim is to fight the commercialism that's infecting the music industry today. That's one off the reasons why they've put up their songs on their site so you can download them for free.

"We just want to make good pop music saying something about our lives and maybe make some people glad as we go" they say.

Rocking in the Free World

Time to look around and give a great big thumbs up to the people who keep this site online... yeah, I'm talking advertisers and you all know my favorite one already. PayPerPost rocks, not only because it pays, but it lets me decide what I want to put on my site. There's no "Do It or Die" posting. I have complete control.

Therefore, I can pretty much assure you that you won't see blogs about adult diapers (sorry, Rolling Stones) or great deals on slightly used Britney Spears underwear.

In fact, times like this one, I get paid just for simply telling you about PPP. How great is that? I know they're hoping that you'll read this and use them for your ads on blogs. And you should if you're not yet. Their requirements are simple, the people are so easy work with, and the site runs smooth as jazz.

If you're blogging for your band or your love of music or your 30,000,000+ vinyl collection, you should give them a try. If you don't need the money, there's an option to donate it to charity. There's no way to lose.

Zamsteen's Debut Eclectic

"Come over here boy, I've got something for ya...
It's this gun in your mouth, that says
you're gonna do some listening now."

Gansta rap? Nope.

A little edgy old time/new attitude jazz from Rachel Zamsteen, a musician and songwriter who is not afraid to stray from the norm. On her debut album, Bouquet (notpop records), Rachel zigzags her way across a landscape that is equal parts jazz, blues, folk and, of course, rock.

"As a person who has lived life as both a nice and bad girl , I can honestly say that I've felt more rewarded when I acted out in a 'rebellious' way or did things simply to obtain attention," says Rachel. "... Yet in reality, that personality was learned and in a big way was a coping system and/or defense mechanism. Regardless, it's a way to get by, but not the way to thrive. If, as a society, we accept a more relaxed outlook on life, I think we'd all be able to be kinder people."

Rachel's hometown newspaper, the Hartford Advocate, describes her as a mix of "Debbie Harry in her prime with a dash of Lydia Lunch's violence." And while on Bouquet, you may not hear punk rock anthems or feedback-laden tracks with thunderous drums of doom, you will feel the power and influence of Nirvana within her emotional words and delivery.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

The Finals Find a Cause

Immortal Records officially released its multi-artist compilation, "A Santa Cause II" on November 21. The album's 26 tracks are available exclusively for download via MySpace.com, for 99 cents per song or $9.99 for the entire package. A portion of all proceeds will benefit Cure Autism Now, an organization of parents, clinicians and leading scientists committed to accelerating the pace of biomedical research in autism (the wide range of symptoms include loss of speech in children) through raising money for research projects, education and outreach. It's a cause in which Immortal Records' artists, The Finals, are proud to be a part.

"Initially when we were asked to record a track for the compilation we didn't know the proceeds we're going to benefit autism," tells guitarist Lou Bottone. He continues, "When we found out, I had talked to a couple of friends who work with autistic children and they were able to shed some light on why raising awareness is so important. Autism was once considered a rare disorder and only affected 1 in 10,000 people, but now affects as many as 1 in 166 people. Since there is no known cure and treatment is specific to each individual, it is necessary to stress the importance of education. Aiding in the financial responsibility for the special education needs of these people is significant because if this disorder is
detected early, these people have a chance of leading normal lives. It was great to have the opportunity to be a part of that."

The Finals chose to cover Wham's "Last Christmas" as their contribution to the compilation. "It's one of those songs you won't admit you like, but when it's on, you know you'll secretly be singing along to it," Bottone reveals as the reason why the band decided on that particular song.

"Our keyboard player always wanted to cover it too, so when we had the chance, we figured we'd do it." The song was recorded with producer Jayson DeZuzio (Coheed and Cambria) of Stained Glass Studios in Paramus, New Jersey.

Death Metal Free Download

Check out the brand new MP3 from latest Wicked World signings NOX on the label's MySpace homepage.

Taken from the 'Ixaxaar' album due Feb 19, 'Choronzonic Chaos Gods' is the opening cut and demonstrates NOX's devastating attack in full flow.

Wicked World Records formed around 1998 as an imprint of Earache Records. Focusing solely on Death and extreme Metal the label debuted with the 'Statements of Intent' compilation that featured such luminaries in formative stages as Arch Enemy, The Haunted, Katatonia, Dimmu Borgir, In Flames etc.

The early releases by the likes of The Elysian Fields, December Wolves and Gandalf established diversity within the roster. Later classic debuts from the likes of Decapitated and Hate Eternal ensured the label's credibility.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Treeball Free Downloads Via Obscure Sound

The indie music fiends at Obscure Sound (ok, I don't know that they're fiends, I just like the word) have tipped me off to some free sounds from the international indie band Treeball. For some inexplicable reason - because they so don't suck - Treeball has released their fourth album "I Dream of Eclectic Sheep" free of charge.

Obscure Sound sayeth:

There tends to be a certain unjustified disposition towards bands who release entire albums for free on the internet. Some point to a lack of quality, effort, and creativity before even listening to one song. What about bands with visible talent who just enjoy spreading their music to all fans throughout the world, at no cost? Treeball are a good example of this unselfish attitude. Sure, the band could have released I Dream of Eclectic Sheep and made some sort of profit, but they seem to value quality reception and support from fans instead of financial benefaction.

Obscure Sound has direct download links for three of the songs and links to the band's homepage for more.

Let's all race over there and see what else the Obscure Ones have!

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Megadeth "Gears of War" Download

Be a gamer and download this one while you can - "Gears of War" from the video game of the same name. (Wow, that rhyming was lame.) You can also grab the lyrics here.

~|~

Monday, November 13, 2006

No, No Chichino

Hmm... much as I wanted to like - no, love - Chichino "the fresh new face of British funk and soul" I was underwhelmed. Damn, I want to believe press releases. Does that make me so wrong?

Hoping for a true retro chic groove I listened to "Every Little Thing" and "Now's the Time for Love" from the promo CD. There was no edge to anything. The music was all right, the vocals were all right, but overall, it wasn't something I'd take the time to download on dialup. (The true test of music.)

Better luck next time, Chichinos.

~|~

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Free Mp3 Downloads

Free music today! Tell me this rocks.

Indie Vision Music has a hot download page for you and they're giving away MP3s from the Summer Slam! Compilation. Twenty-three tracks in fact; including cuts from Secrets Known To Liars, Kings To You, Space Pilot, Your Eyes My Dreams, Death Is Not Welcome Here and Dogwood.

With Blood Comes Cleansing Seeking Musicians

From Hxc's daily hardcore news:

Blood & Ink Records band, With Blood Comes Cleansing have recently announced the departure of both the bands singer and there drummer. They are currently seeking replacements and have issued the following statement:

"With Blood Comes Cleansing has parted ways with singer Micheal Sasser, drummer Spence Erickson, and bassist Jon Stripling. There are no hard feelings over their departure, they have decided the time has come for them to move on to persue other interests and we respect that. However, in no way is With Blood Comes Cleansing over. We have already found a replacement bassist which we will announce in the coming weeks and are currently in search of a replacement vocalist and drummer.


To apply for a spot with the band go to Hxc News and READ THE REQUIREMENTS!. If you don't fit the bill, please don't waste their time. Good luck then.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Worth Repeating

(I've posted this wherever I see fit - if you've read it... god, I'm amazed!)

I see the Internet as the golden road Indie musicians and their fans can finally take to say the hell with the Big Three. And I don't mean file sharing, that's a whole nother bucket of worms.

In the bad old days, the musick industry controlled what we could hear outside of our fairly small geographical regions. If you wanted anything but the Beatles or Boston or the MOR-band-of-the-moment, you had to hit the bars and hope for the best. The Net has changed that... much of the proof coming to me in the fact that I own more Aussie band CDs than U.S. ones.

Matthew Ebel warns that the musick industry/Internet big biz wants to change all that.

As a musician, it’s rough enough having to pay for cable or DSL just to be able to upload new music and spread the word. If AT&T is given the power to extort more money out of guys like me, the entire indie music world might suffer greatly. Podcasters would certainly find themselves up a creek. Some might argue that the telecoms wouldn’t make things worse than they already are, but those people obviously don’t know the power of human greed.

This is a well-considered and well written post. If you care about Indie music and YOUR access to it, read on. A Better Internet?

~|~

Friday, November 10, 2006

eMusic Free Download: Teenage Prayers

On Monday, November 13th, eMusic will offer the Teenage Prayers "Brown Bottle" as the Free Download of the Day to its subscriber base at eMusic.com.

The Teenage Prayers' self-released first album "Ten Songs" is now available in its entirety for download at eMusic.com - the world's leading digital retailer of independent music, second only to iTunes in number of downloads sold.

Yeah!

~|~

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Indie Quote of the Century

Aversion.com just put up a Q&A with White Town's Jyoti Mishra. After doing the straight label shite, Mishra set up his own label to release his long-delayed "Don't Mention the War." I haven't heard the tunes yet, but Mishra's attitude has me on his side immediately. Here's the quote AND YOU MUST READ IT AT LEAST 3 TIMES!

"If you're a musician, you don't need anyone else's approval to release records. Why wait around? Just stick the fucker out."

"If you're a musician, you don't need anyone else's approval to release records. Why wait around? Just stick the fucker out."

"If you're a musician, you don't need anyone else's approval to release records. Why wait around? Just stick the fucker out."

Got it? Make music - not the rounds of the corporations! You rock and we want to hear it. You don't need them anymore.

~|~

Interesting Aussie Sighting

Worth a listen:
Visions of a Nomad plays world/jazz/fusion/groove with an Australian Indigenous twist. The group's highly original repertoire is heavily accompanied by the didgeridoo.

Play for rain!
~|~

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Indie Junkie Disclosure Policy

DisclosurePolicy.org is a perfect way to create transparency for bloggers and blog readers. I've always tried to make it clear when a post is an ad, but this is a perfect way to make sure you all know where I'm coming from. It's a cool idea, it's founded by PayPerPost and it's free. Disclosure Policy Generator

Here it is:

This policy is valid from 04 November 2006

This blog is a personal blog written and edited by me. For questions about this blog, please contact junkiejones_@_gmail.com.

This blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorship, paid insertions or other forms of compensation.

This blog abides by word of mouth marketing standards. We believe in honesty of relationship, opinion and identity. The compensation received may influence the advertising content, topics or posts made in this blog. That content, advertising space or post will be clearly identified as paid or sponsored content.

The owner(s) of this blog is compensated to provide opinion on products, services, websites and various other topics. Even though the owner(s) of this blog receives compensation for our posts or advertisements, we always give our honest opinions, findings, beliefs, or experiences on those topics or products. The views and opinions expressed on this blog are purely the bloggers' own. Any product claim, statistic, quote or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider or party in question.

This blog does not contain any content which might present a conflict of interest.


To get your own policy, go to http://www.disclosurepolicy.org

Friday, November 03, 2006

The Finals are Huge In Asia

The Finals are taking their music international -

Japan's independent punk rock label, Kick Rock Music, will release "Plan
Your Getaway" on November 1. Established in 2001, Kick Rock Music has
released albums by high quality rock bands in Japan including Good 4
Nothing and Golden Goose. In 2005, the label began licensing foreign
artists, saying "We believe that there is no boarder in music. Now matter
where they are from, cool music is cool music." The Finals join the Kick
Rock roster of American bands including Valencia, For Felix and Show Off.

visit-visit The Finals

~|~

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Trashlight Vision Readies Release

Indie punk rock band Trashlight Vision is set to release their first CD titled "Alibis and Ammunition" on indie label EVO Recordings November 14th. The CD has early pre-release ordering at a discounted price available at EVO Recordings with a Halloween ship date. "Alibis and Ammunition", distributed by Redeye, will be available at all retailers on November 14th.

Trashlight Vision has toured Europe with Stiff Little Fingers as well as The Buzzcocks and just completed their first American tour with the misfits' michale graves.

For more information about Trashlight Vision, please visit their web site.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Wat's Up with Wampus?

Wampus will distribute a new compilation, 'Rip This,' focusing on Wampus artists and targeted at independent filmmakers, in early 2007... Kowtow Popof is readying his long-awaited 'End of Greatness' for release... Arms of Kismet are collaborating with sitarist Gaurav Mazumdar (Ravi Shankar, Philip Glass) on their new record, 'Play for Affection'.... tvfordogs are recording a new album, some of which is previewed on the forthcoming Neil Luckett disc, 'Radio for Cats'.... Johnny J Blair has been gigging in the Bahamas as keyboardist for former Monkee Davy Jones.... Casey Abrams performs at the National Folk Alliance conference in Memphis, Tennessee early next year....

OK, take a breath, people. Visit Wampus.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Aroarah Rocks On!

Aroarah has been chosen from thousands of bands internationally as a nominee for ARTIST OF THE YEAR in the 16th Annual International Los Angeles Music Awards. The band hasn't gotten this far by just sitting back and looking pretty. (Although they have been caught doing that at times.) Check out these accomplishments:

  • Nominated and won the Southern California Music Awards for best out of area
  • EPK directed by Shavo Odadjian (System Of A Down)
  • Starred in nationally televised Converse commercial
  • Limited edition Converse shoe with Aroarah logo
  • Featured in an article for BBC News
  • The first all-girl rock band to be endorsed through ESP guitars
  • Endorsed through Vic Firth
  • Featured as American Idol Underground’s spotlight artist in the 2005 December issue of Rolling Stone Magazine
  • Receiving national and international radio and Internet radio airplay
  • Getting reviews nationally and internationally in magazines and web zines

    Indie going big time! It doesn't get any better than this. You can find more information at the LA Music Online's main Web site.

  • Sunday, October 01, 2006

    Magnatune Introduces Zilla

    Zilla: Egg

    Maybe the reason Zilla is performing to so many sold out crowds these days is because of the ultra-rare musical niche they inhabit: improvised DJ set soundscapes performed by actual humans on actual instruments with no loops or sequences. Or, maybe it's just because they're a great band. In any case, Zilla is a Colorado based trio of musicians that specialize in live, improvised electronica.

    Be sure to listen for the incredible hammered dulcimer performance by Jamie Janover on the "Wicker Pilots"
    track and others.

    -- Magnatune

    Thursday, September 28, 2006

    Upload the Download Festival

    On September 30, Shoreline Amphitheatre will be packed with indie music junkies for this year's Download Festival, featuring Beck, the Shins and Coheed and Cambria. Just make sure you get your ass out of there when the concert's over because next up are John Mayer and Sheryl Crow on Oct. 1st. *Get a bad taste in my mouth writing that*

    Anyway - Shoreline Amphitheatre in Mountain View
    Tickets: starting at $24.75

    In Theory Signs Deal, Out of BoDog

    Los Angeles-based Alternative powerhouse band In Theory has signed a production, distribution and publishing deal with Shelter From the Storm Records and is in the studio working on their debut album. Signing with Shelter automatically terminates their affiliation with the BoDog battle of the bands competition of which they have ascended from a group of approximately 10,000 to a short list of less than 50 finalists. They were one of two winners in the Los Angeles competition held at the Roxy on the Sunset Strip on August 20th.

    Sunday, September 03, 2006

    Achim's "Achimsong" - Rock On Luxembourg!

    I can admit in all honesty that Achim is my favorite musician from Luxembourg. But if he lived in Nashville, he’d likely be my favorite musician from there, too.

    Achim creates wonderful, danceable, mind-melting music that defies genre. His promo song list includes classification of Achimsong’s tunes, which encompass R&B, rock, new age, funk, soul, hip hop … I’m not sure if Achim is trying to break us out of our stereotypes of what these genres should sound like or if he’s just playing with our minds. But it’s good. Really good.

    I can hear some sweet R&B notes in “Funky Friend” but the song is pure DJ-mix electronica at its finest. My favorite song, “Spring Time,” is listed as country pop. OK. I hate country music and only tolerate pop. Maybe I don’t know what country he means and I don’t expect to hear songsmithing of this quality on any pop station in the U.S.

    “Groovy Kinda” is funky, as listed, but the drums are so beyond funk we gotta bring it back into the techno-tinged fold. “My Sweet Song” is an acoustic, guitar-only masterpiece. I just don’t get how this guy can make me want to dance to it.

    Much of the CD is mixed so the songs flow smoothly from one into another - hard to do without the occasional harsh sounds - but done perfectly by Achim. Mostly instrumental with some dubbed-in phrases in a few songs, this CD fits so many moods that there doesn’t seem to be a bad time to listen.

    So grab Achimsong and drive, work, exercise, meditate, exercise, shake booty and/or any other activity you enjoy a soundtrack to … find it all at www.achimsong.com. Oh, and the louder, the better.

    Thursday, August 24, 2006

    Magnatune Will Rule the Indie World

    Or perhaps they already do... check this out:

    Various Artists: Magnatune at the Creative Commons Salon

    We got so many compliments on the set we DJ'ed at the Creative Commons'
    event at club Shine in San Francisco that we decided to turn it into a
    special compilation just for you. The emphasis here is on a cocktail and
    conversation friendly vibe, so the selections are all fairly mellow and
    mid-tempo. Best of all, this compliation features some of the very best
    tracks by newer Magnatune artists like The Seldon Plan, Justin Bianco,
    Burning Babylon, and The Headroom Project, so if you haven't yet heard
    these artists, listen to the stream and let me know what you think. This
    is the absolute perfect thing to put on during happy hour, by the way...73
    minutes of good feeling and musical excellence.

    Get it now!

    ~|~

    Sunday, August 20, 2006

    Hip Hop with Andy Bowen

    Andy Bowen’s “D&A: Mix Tape” (feat. Danny Arellano) could be the best of the best of any genre. That’s a lot coming from me, since I’ve never claimed to be a queen of Rap/Hip Hop. Bowen took a sampling of his songs (reported to total more than 800) and came up with a hefty 19 for this CD. And he although he dared me to in the first song, I never found a cliche.

    This guy’s range - and intelligence - is daunting. I want to call this Hip Hop for the Head, but that dismisses the way his words touch the heart. I risk getting all trite myself, but these songs literally had me laughing or crying or both.

    Bowen’s ability to spin between sexual, political and spiritual spheres is impressive. “Kama Sutra” should tip you off that things are gonna get a little nasty in here, but you don’t expect the humor that he blends in with the testosterone rhyme.

    “Go BIG or Go Home (Live to Skate)” is an anthem for everyone who indulges in extreme behavior on wheels, whether 2, 4, 8 or more, and would make a perfect X Games theme. Who among us - who has gone way too fast and way too far - can’t relate to the advice: “Pre-order them veneers / cause teeth is souveniers.”?

    And yeah, until you’ve heard “Grand Junction” in the lyrics of a Hip Hop tune you just don’t know the variety of flavors the genre has to offer - cowboy dip apparently being one of them.

    I can’t write a tenth of what I want to say about this collection and have it fit in the paper. There’s no posing. No cliches. No gangsta. No misogyny. No hatred. Andy Bowen just drops rhymes like this:

    “Mister Bush, my grandfather pulled your father out the water, did you bother to thank him for your life? Now try and **ing swallow.”

    What can I say, other than thank you for the music and the meaning? Visit Andy’s Myspace and download everything you can.

    Sunday, August 06, 2006

    DJ HELL - coming soon

    Can't wait for this one to hit my mailbox. Righteous gigolos look out!

    DJ HELL presents) "INTERNATIONAL DEEJAY GIGOLOS 9"

    • sequel of the legendary Gigolo Compilation series selected and compiled by DJ HELL
    • Gigolo Compilation 9 features some of the best out of Gigolo's 2005- 2006 12“
    releases
    • including hits like DIDDY & FELIX DA HOUSECAT's Jack U, GRACE JONES & HELL's I've Seen That Face Before, FISCHERSPOONER's Just Let Go
    • remixes by HELL, M.A.N.D.Y., JOHN TEJADA and ANTHONY ROTHER
    • new remixes of MISS KITTIN's 1982 and CHR. JUST's I'm A Disco Dancer
    • classic like MIKE PERRAS Beginning Of Life and D.A.F. Der Räuber Und Der Prinz
    • 14 (!) previously unreleased tracks by HELL, FIXMER, MICK WILLS and FREAKS
    • + previously unreleased remixes by DJ HELL and MOTOR

    Thanks in advance to Rooftop Promotions!

    Tuesday, July 25, 2006

    Looking forward to ... Al Garcia

    I just ordered a press kit for Al Garcia - check out the flavor of his influences! This is gonna be great listening. Review forthcoming if I can stop listening long enough to write ...


    New Jersey-born musician Al Garcia has released a new album, Alternate Realities, that has quickly garnered rave reviews. Following the runaway success of his debut album, Make It So, Garcia has combined his eclectic influences jazz-rock fusion, progressive rock, classical, jazz, latin, space rock, electronica, and cinematic music to create a sound that transcends traditional music boundaries. "Alternate Realities is a journey through the universe of jazz rock and progressive fusion blended by a master musician," says JazzWorldQuest.com.

    Wednesday, July 19, 2006

    Music Review: Marilyn Scott "Innocent of Nothing"

    I hate writing “bad” reviews

    I recently got a CD from a jazz singer named Marilyn Scott. I’m not a jazz expert, but I know enough to say her voice is pretty good for a young, skinny chick.

    Trouble is, the lyrics on the CD “Innocent of Nothing” are so transparent it’s maddening and almost insulting to listen to them. The music is good, the voice is good and the words are honestly crap. It’s like kindergarten komposing.

    And I don’t understand. This is not her debut album and Scott’s voice is the instrument she’s showcasing. So why the predictable pap for lyrics? It’s like Carlos Santana playing guitar riffs on one of those plastic kiddie guitars. He might do it for a laugh, but not in his worst nightmare would it end up on a CD.

    So here it is. A “bad” review. Ms. Scott, to need to have someone around you who will tell you when you’re not being challenged. You need writers who know more than words. Lip-syncing bimbos can get away with insipid lyrics, because top pop really is booty without brains. But jazz is smart. Jazz is witty and insightful. Don’t scrimp. Your talent deserves more introspection. Not to mention, more self-respect.

    Saturday, July 15, 2006

    Notes to be noted on Ipod Knockoffs

    Hong Kong rocks! It's true. A $45 (with shipping) fauxPod that holds over 500 songs, I can record live concerts with AND holds a zillion or 2 ebooks for standing-in-line reading - you can't beat this. But...

    #1. Expect your user's manual to be written in Chinese.
    #2. Realize you'll receive funky earbuds that will a) shed the ear condom in 57 seconds, b) jam the edge of the "protective" wire mesh into your ear canal in 37 minutes, c) sound best when the previously mentioned items are torn off and thrown away.
    #3. Know that the Chinese believe all foreigners have earholes the size of a quarter,
    #4. Understand that the pod will have a 3/32 size connector, meaning if you want to adapt up to that groovy pair of '60s headphones you got on eBay, it will require a chain of adaptors three times longer than the pod itself.

    But $45? Bless you, my Chinese friends.

    "Rain Maker" by The Grotto

    Writing reviews the past few weeks has been hard. I had one I needed to do because the band was hitting town, another because I’d had the CD so long it was becoming embarrassing … and, you know.

    But a friend/coworker dropped off The Grotto’s CD in the middle of this. I listened and immediately wanted to fling the other reviews aside and share the great sounds coming out of The Grotto. So what this other international band was coming to town - The Grotto is already here! They are OURS! And they rock.

    This CD is a four-song shortie and it was a blast. Perfect to drop into the CD player and fill your commute with local sounds. “Nothing” starts out slows and then hits a very sweet groove. The music and lyrics sound so polished, it makes me proud. What is too hot about this song is that about three minutes in the guitars and Jake Ruybal’s vocals just explode. What a great way to finish off a meaningful song.

    “All You Need” lets us know right away that we’re dealing with a multi-talented band, as Lyndsy Pritchard takes her turn on vocals. The chorus of this song is so intense and head-filling it made my hair stand up the first time through. Some excellent keyboard work adds to the originality of this tune, taking it from a “Hey, Fleetwood Mac could have done this” song to something altogether with and beyond its time.

    Although a great listen, “No One But Me” is (in my questionable opinion) the “weakest” song on the CD - that’s not to say it’s weak like weak - just comparing it to the others, the vocals are a bit cloudy. The guitars come out so clear and sharp … maybe that’s why the vocals seem a little underdone. The song breaks about two-thirds of the way through and really showcases the instruments. The vocals do pump up, but not enough to break free. Definitely not a song-killer, because this band is clearly made up of talented musicians.

    “Rain Maker” is a haunting mix. I really enjoy the almost unsettling shifts in the music and mood. Pritchard’s smooth vocals do perfect service to the lyrics. I don’t know who composes what, but this band is as tight as any that’s been around the block 20 or 30 times. What an outrageous and wondrous thing that they are from Grand Junction. God, this town rocks!

    Grab some CDs and other cool stuff on the band’s site Web site. I’m going to be sporting The Eye t-shirt ASAP.

    Music Review: Taxi Doll "… waiting …”

    If this shorty CD is a taste of things to come, the Big Labels will be knocking on Taxi Doll’s door soon. This hot 8 song disc (3 of the tunes are remixes, but more on that later) goes by in a fantastic flash and I dare you not to dance. And to you poseurs who say you don’t do electronica - or “rocktronica” as the sound has been described - you, too, will dance.

    The first song “Waiting” starts with a loud funky bass line that holds up the backbeat, while vocalist Dhana Taprogge does downright anything she wants from strong to sensual with her voice and attitude. This is a great beginning and the quality continues all through the CD.

    Although the band has been favorably compared to Garbage, the song “Give Me More” sounds oddly similar to Nelly Furtado. Probably just some short-circuit in my brain. For those who like Garbage, but feel maybe they’re a little too dark for overandoverandover listening, you need Taxi Doll.

    Now, about the 3 remixes … most of the time this just burns me as a waste of space and a buttload of ego. Taxi Doll’s remixes are actual - and incredible - reinterpretations of the songs “Look at What You Get” and “Waiting.” I would be hard-pressed to chose my favorite mix if I could only have one. Thankfully, I don’t have to choose.

    You or someone you know really needs this CD, I promise you. Visit Taxi Doll or just go to CD Baby and grab the CD.

    Little Daytona Presents "The Freshman Class"

    Just got handed Little Daytona's "The Freshman Class" - can I say one more time the talent in this town amazes me?

    Little Daytona brings together Blackjack, K-nyne, Kialie and L.nix in a 13 song CD that mixes everything from hardcore rap, the smoothest of hip hop - and don't kill me if I say it - a fine instrumental trance number that made my pathetic day shine.

    From the CD, I’d judge that these killers' live show would be more than GJ deserves. The slide from Kialie and Blackjack's "Fed Up" into the too hot "Switchz" was as smooth as belly skin. Then the drop from "Switchz" to the transcendent "Abduction" … sweet cool down.

    And you hardheaded hardcore lovers will surely be pleased by the just-so-nasty "On the Low." If not, I think you must be posing.

    Although the CD has the PA for explicit lyrics, don’t think these artists depend on the F-word and its variations to carry their lyrics. There's plenty of intelligence and art to their words. Seems like you can't be real at all these days without getting a parental advisory.

    I'm glad I got the chance to hear this and I'm gonna keep an eye out for their next show. If you can't wait - and why should you? - you can pick up the CD from Four Front Entertainment.

    Sunday, July 02, 2006

    You call this practice?

    I had the honor of attending The Wrong Impressions’ practice session this week. I’ll tell you right off, I love this band, and it’s not just because I know and love its members. These people are not perfect and I’m not going to blow smoke anywhere it might be uncomfortable. Although they can switch between instruments more effortlessly than I can flip through my many personalities, they do screw up and they screw up royally. But more about that later.

    I’ve been to many bands’ practice sessions and for the most part they’re very educational. It’s cool to see how a band decides on the songs they’ll cover or how they’ll refine the ones they’ve written. It’s usually more of an exploration of technique and you can clearly see a separation between the band’s perfecting of the music and the perfecting of their stage presentation. Works great. When you have the song down, it’s much easier to bring in the frills and the flash and the crowd-pleasing interactions.

    Well, The Wrong Impressions don’t work this way. I’ve never been to a practice that gave me the hair-raising, on-edge emotion of a live show. (In fact, I’ve been to live shows that didn’t give me that.) But these guys hold nothing back. The thrash, the drive, the connection - everything is there. It’s there in every song and it’s there every time they run through the song no matter how many times it takes. It’s incredible and exhausting.

    Imagine being face to face with a band in a very small garage that the musicians seem to think is an arena. The sound can be felt from every direction and you’re close enough to see the sweat on their foreheads and the intensity in their eyes. These guys absolutely burn through everything they do and it’s impossible not to get caught up in their emotional and physical reaction to the music.

    What really blew me away was they could be so intent on the music but if someone fell off tempo - by what was about a hundredth of second as far as I could tell - they would all stop immediately and each of them would know what went wrong and what needed to be done to make it right. Hit a wrong note in that garage and everything stopped just long for the others to rip on you until everyone laughed and then you’d jump right back into it.

    And I’m talking complicated songs here. This ain’t no “House of the Rising Sun” band. I’ve been sworn to secrecy about what they’re working on. (Sorry about the grave thing, Mom. I know you’re not dead, they made me say it.) But there’s at least one song that I don’t think the original artists ever had the cojones to play live.

    The Wrong Impressions are something special. Bill (I just put you first because you’re oldest, so don’t get puffed up), Danny, Johnny G. and Bridgett are musicians and performers to the core. If you really love rock and aren’t just some dilettante jammer, you need to see them. Then you need to get in tight and get an invitation to a practice. I’ve used a lot of words here, but the experience is actually beyond description.

    Thanks for the experience. As for the 58s … well, you know.

    Tuesday, June 27, 2006

    Hateful bigots can't keep a good Queen down

    Dance music queen Aviance stomped down the streets in New York's Gay Pride parade on the back of a gaily painted, fake elephant just days after being brutally beaten by four homophobic idiots.

    Aviance's new single "Strut" (released on indie label Liza Records) has just hit and, despite having his jaws wired together and other injuries, Aviance is gonna do all he can to promote it. The indie scene supports him.

    At least this bitch does.

    Lost in the crowd at MySpace? Try a place you may actually be seen and heard!


    ~Junkie Jones
    .

    Pop It!

    Kevin Richardson, the oldest and crankiest member of the Backstreet Boys, is leaving the "boy" band at age 33, or so says the group's Web site.

    Apparently, he wants to pursue other interests ... which I can only assume to be amassing his Power Ranger collection, learning to dress himself and maybe - just maybe - girls.

    The "Boys" plan to carry on bravely without him as none of them were quite sure what he did anyway.

    "The door will always be open for [Kevin] to return to the Backstreet Boys," the group said.

    Uh, would that be the back door? HA! I slay myself!



    Lost in the crowd at MySpace? Try a place you may actually be
    seen and heard!

    ~Junkie Jones
    .