It’s rare that I see something on MySpace that actually gets me excited. Ok, ok… I get excited when there are new bulletins that I can fill out and let mindless readers know what color boxers I am wearing and if my parents and I ever fight over curfew….doesn’t everyone?
I logged on to the “Place For Friends” website yesterday and saw something on the home page about a band called United Nations. I became interested mainly because I got a kick out of the picture of the band and laughed at how all members were all wearing Ronald Regan masks. I became more interested at the sarcastic description of the band that said that the members of the band have nothing to do with Glassjaw, Converge, or Thursday. That to me read: Awesome! This band contains members of 3 bands I adore…
I did a little Wikipedia‘n and discovered that the band right now is pretty much a secret due to contract obligations but the band, rather grindcore screamo (you are right Adam and Ram, no grindcore at all…) supergroup, will be putting out their debut album on 09/09/08 on Eyeball Records (who has previously released material by Thursday…). Better yet the band has decided to stream their entire debut on MySpace. You can check that out HERE.
I sampled a few of the songs and all I can say is that this band is brutal. The sounds of Thursday + Converge = Great Idea. For all you fans of loud heavy screaming metal but have a soft spot for screamo, this album will be for you. This album is going to be the next big thing.
To make matters even funnier, head over to the United Nations official website. It is a parody of the UN website full of satire and witty links. I laughed out loud at the FAQ‘s that have serious questions and humorous answers relating the the United Nations band and not the so-called government association based upon cooperation (or so they say).
I have not really been excited about an upcoming release all summer and I am glad something has finally sparked my attention. I expect big things from this band and I know the hype is going to be worth it…now if they will only swing though my town so they can rock my face off.
If you are like me and want to pre-order their debut album, click the link below…
If someone were to ask you who the greatest band of your time was, what would you say?
I myself would be speechless and have no response. That is just too tough of a question to answer.
To me it is impossible to label just one band being “the greatest band of my time”. Still there are a lot of bands out there I see could hold the title if I had to be forced to make a decision (to each their own of course). With so many genres of music I love along with the tons of artists that have my respect I think I might be able to narrow it down a little, but I know I would be missing out on someone who deserves credit so we shall just call this a sample.
Here are a couple of bands that stand out as great to me and reasons why:
NIN – Since I was a kid I have loved this band. I learned of them freshman year in high school when some lame jock kid found a cassette tape in his locker that was next to mine. He was going to throw it away but decided I was a better target and tossed it at me. It was a copy of Pretty Hate Machine and I remember that day throwing it into my big 4 AA battery of a hog yellow Sony Walkman. I was hooked instantly. It was a new genre for me seeing how I was all about the Beastie Boys and Metallica. Every album that NIN has released I enjoyed tremendously. I still find it a shame though that it took me over 15 years to see them live… It was amazing though. NIN blew me away and I almost hate myself for missing them live so many times…
Pantera – I was introduced to them thanks to some illegal substance smoking friends back in high school. I was already a fan of metal but there was something about Pantera that just grabbed me. Maybe it was Phil Anselmo’s voice or Vinnie Paul and Dime Bag Darrell’s musical capabilities. They were one of my first live shows and even if some of their beginning albums were hair metal and concluding albums seemed a little weak to me I am still a fan of Cowboys from Hell, Vulgar Display of Power, and Far Beyond Driven.
Faith No More / Mike Patton – Mike Patton is a musical god and I wish to hell Faith No More would group together just for one more last hurrah. Ever since “Epic” was featured on MTV I labeled myself a fan. Throughout the years Faith No More went their own ways and Mike Patton continued his uniqueness in bands like Mr. Bungle, Tomahawk and Peeping Tom. Sure it got a little weird sometimes especially when he worked with jazz experimentalist John Zorn but it still was Mike Patton!
Bjork – Yeah I know…call me what you want but I love Bjork. I did not really appreciate her until I picked up Homogenic. That album changed the way I started to look at music. Perhaps I was growing up but saddening loud metal and screaming bloody murder just did not seem as exciting. Her voice was so depressing in songs yet so happy. It may not make much sense but I know what I like and I love Bjork.
Radiohead – This English rock band is and will always be one of my favorite bands of all time. I rocked out to them since their first album was released. “Creep” grabbed my grunge attention when I was sporting flannels and saying how great Nirvana and Pearl Jam were. As years passed their music became a little too much for some but not for me. I loved OK Computer and Kid A because I found them so unique. I would listen to each album over and over singing along with a smile on my face. That to me is a great band.
NoFX – Drug infused punk rock music since the 80’s who now are successful after capturing pop punk rock at its opening stages. Saying no to commercial radio and MTV the band made their own success literally. The band may not have your top quality musicians but their look on life, politics, and themselves make for one hilarious act.
So that was my small piece. I could change the above six to other bands easily but they were the first that came to mind… Misfits, Iron Maiden, Rolling Stones, Minor Threat, and even Tupac… There are so many other heavy hitting bands/musicians that I could talk about…
What are some bands you consider your greatest band of your time?
The Briggs are a punk rock act that had a hard time getting to me. I am not saying that I was forced to listen to them; rather I missed many occasions to sample them in the past. I either heard a song by them on a compilation and never researched it or simply showed up to a live show just as they left the stage. Missed opportunities did not discourage me though as I finally had the prospect of seeing the Irish punk rockers The Briggs live at the 2008 Van’s Warped Tour and I made damn sure I was in the audience before they took stage.
The Los Angeles punk rock act won me over with their punk rock energy and wholesome sound. I was excited at my decision of finally checking them out as they were one of the few true punk rock acts on the popular tour. Recently releasing their fourth full length album Come All You Madmen I finally got a taste of what I have been missing all these years and I must say it was scrumptious.
Formed in 2001 the foursome has continually toured the US with heavy hitting punk rock acts such as the Dropkick Murphys and Bad Religion. They work hard at what they do and take it to heart. Once quoted as saying that Bob Dylan and Elvis Costello are more punk than most of the punk bands out there today by taking chances and being serious about what they do, The Briggs continue the trend.
“Mad Man” started up the album with politically powerful lyrics and had plenty of sing-a-long opportunities. The Briggs’ ode to “LA” almost has an Oi feel to it but by no means sounds like a simple creation; this ode is heartfelt to their hometown.
“Bloody Minds” had a hint of Against Me! to it, but the song was really likable, especially the horns making for one of my choice cuts off this disc. Another track “Not Alone” really captured my attention too. The song was catchy with unity inspired lyrics layered on top of pleasant sounding punk rock.
“Oblivion” takes a change in the CD’s direction toning down the punk rock feel. The change is welcomed as it is a great song more rock and seemingly more personal to The Briggs. “Final Words” slows down a tad with a song I feel might have sounded a little better if it were sped up. At times I am reminded of something the Clash might have created but not enough for me to want to keep this song on repeat.
“Molly” crawled past me as the closer of the album. What a change in tempo from first to last song. The song is more of an Irish bawl that would be suitable for a drunken evening in a pub. I am not sure why the band started so strong and then ended it with almost a sleeper of a track. Perhaps it was a metaphor I completely missed.
If you are thinking that maybe punk is dead or over processed then maybe you should check out The Briggs. In my opinion they were one of the bands that helped make the 2008 Warped Tour more memorable and after seeing them live and even talking to them at their merch tent (friendliest band ever), I had to check out their newest release. What they have created was not thrown together in hopes of making a quick buck. They are very passionate about the music they display and prove it on Come All You Madmen. Check out their MySpace page if you need some proof.
I finally submerged to reality and listened to Metallica‘s new release “The Day That Never Comes” their first single from the upcoming Rick Rubin produced Death Magnetic. I sampled it on my way to work this afternoon thanks to Sirius radio’s Hard Attack and for the most part liked what I heard. When I came home I went to Metallica’s website to sample it again. The song was just about 8 minutes and honestly all I could think of is that the song could have been sped up just a tad and it might have sounded even better. It does not sound like anything from St. Anger (thankfully) but does not necessarily go all the way back to their roots. It’s got a good sound to it especially for a band that has been around for so long.
I guess I’ll have to wait until 09/12/2008 when the CD hits stores and will also be legally available to download to hear some more. I admit, I am kind of excited. I just hope I am not disappointed…..
For more info including links to hear the song and read the lyrics check out Blabbermouth.net.
After four long years the innovative rock act Radiohead decided to make a stop at Blossom Music Center before their adoring Ohio fans. It was no surprise that the show was sold out, as many in Ohio and the surrounding states planned this special day months in advance knowing that the band rarely tours. Rumors of Radiohead touring were finally laid to rest at the end of February, when the band announded their second leg of the North American tour.
Sold out crowds mean traffic jams, and I am pleased to say that with the help of Google Maps I avoided the mile-plus long backup that filled up Route 8. Parking the car and walking almost a mile to the coveted amphitheater did not get my spirits down as I was excited to be seeing Radiohead for the fourth time in my life. This was their third time returning to Blossom Music Center in the last seven years.
One thing I admired about the show is that it was “green.” The beers were served in biodegradable cups made form corn, and the merch was made from recycled materials. I opted out from dropping $40 on a T-shirt formed from plastic bottles, but did spend some money on a container made from recycled aluminum material. The container stated “Radiohead Tour 2008 H2O” and posted the amount of water bottles that are sold every year (18 million). I thought it was a good keepsake, and at the same time my personal small way to help the envoirnment.
I barely obtained a ticket this year (and yet again it was a lawn seat), but I was OK with that and so were the rest of the people around me. Opening act Grizzly Bear tried to entertain the crowd, but their music just was not providing the energy to everyone. Some fans sang along to the indie sounding band from Brooklyn, NY, while others mocked them. Still, they seemed honored to be touring with such an influential band.
The sun set showcasing a beautiful partly cloudy sky when Radiohead took the stage. The band opened with “15 Step” from their latest, pay-what-you-feel-like album In Rainbows. The light show behind the band was their best yet in my opinion, with what looked like reflective bars with a media screen behind them.
It was not until the band started playing “Pyramid Song” that I realized how lucky I was to be stuck in this crowd of people. Looking around I saw hippies, punk rockers, families, and the occasional scenester all collected on a hilly lawn on a warmer than normal summer evening. I smiled because I knew that even though it was my fourth time getting to see them live, they still enthralled me. I also admired the looks on the faces of the fans that clearly were attending their first Radiohead experience.
Some songs sounded a little more natural with acoustics, while others were overly processed with sweet samples and electronic beats. Regardless of how they tweaked their material it was a real treat to listen to them. The crowd was also entertaining to watch especially when someone took it upon themselves to throw about 200 light sticks in the air, only to have the crowd continually throw them towards the stage.
Focusing on newer material, I sometimes found myself not as entertained, but soon the light show helped redirect my attention as did hearing some older material like “The National Anthem” and “Climbing Up The Walls.” One thing that was irritating was that where I was standing I could barely see the band and had no idea when they left the stage, only to return to for an encore.
One of the highlights of the evening for me was hearing “Paranoid Android” live. I have and will always love that song. On top of that, there was the always amazing guitar solo in the middle of it which in turn had the entire crowd cheering at the top of their lungs. After “Street Spirit,” the band left the stage and came out once again for a second encore.
Thom Yorke took a minute to state “this is most definitely a love song” before the act started playing “House Of Cards.” Ending the show was Kid A’s “Everything In Its Right Place,” a another song I was hoping to hear. It was a nice ending to an amazing performance.
The show seemed to blow past much faster than previous performances, yet they were onstage for over 2 hours. Before I knew it I was in what my friend called the “ET shuffle” as closely grouped fans slowly made way back to their vehicles. During the long walk, we spoke about how awesome it was to see them live once again and how breathtaking they are. It was truly a special evening, thanks to one of the most important bands out there on the rock scene.
All I Need
The National Anthem
A Wolf At The Door
Exit Music (For A Film)
Jigsaw Falling Into Place
Climbing Up The Walls
How to Disappear Completely
Dollars and Cents
House of Cards
Everything In Its Right Place
Thanks to the wonderful invention of YouTube I was able to get a better look at what was going on at the show that amazing evening. Each member of that bad has their own special talent/ability that when combined create the mezmurizing music that is Radiohead.
If you need proof check this out:
Notice Jonny Greenwood replicating the Jimmy Page like guitar playing with a bow. Amazing.