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Showing posts from November, 2019

3 Feet High & Rising: Greek Dark/Post-punk Trio CHAIN CULT Return with Frantic Full-length/EP SHALLOW GRAVE (LA VIDA ES UN MUS)

CREDIT: Carlos Canales Cludad

Shallow Grave by Chain Cult
Guitarist and vocalist Dinos, bassist and vocalist Iasonas "Jason" Panagiotopoulos, and drummer/backing vocalist Vangelis Dimos comprise the Athens, Greece Dark/Post-punk trio, CHAIN CULT. Collectively, Dino, Jason & Vangelis have played in a slew of Greek Hardcore/Punk bands including Dirty Wombs, Λήθη, Conspiracy of Denial, Lifewreck, Blacklisted, Gutter, Junkheart, Ramdat, Timetrap, Αρχή Του Τέλους, and Πεθαίνουν Στο Τέλος. CHAIN CULT initially formed in 2017 and soon after, self-released their 12-track Demo 2018 on cassette tape—and later, as a 6-track 12-inch mini-album on LA VIDA ES UN MUS—followed by 2018's 2-track Isolated EP. Dinos, Jason Panagiotopoulos & Vangelis Dimos were all born and raised in Athens and appear to be a direct by-product of the widespread Hardcore/Crust Punk scene that first started popping up in and around Athens in 2010-12.


CHAIN CULT and their like-minded peers draw direct i…

The Witzard's Rap EP Wrap-up Feat. Action Bronson & The Alchemist, Almost Elijah, CRASHprez & knowsthetime, ialive, Mikal kHill, Pecue, Rolled Gold & Teek Hall (Nov. 2019 Edition)

ARTWORK BY: Ed Ptskor (@edpiskorcartoonist)

It's been a while, but The Witzard's Rap EP Wrap-up column is back! Over the course of the past month or so, there have been a plethora of solid Hip-Hop EP's released online; a quick, concise 30-minutes or less format that's seemingly, replaced the mixtape/"street album" format of years passed to become your favorite underground rapper/producer's go-to promotional tool. Here, for this latest edition of The Witzard's Rap EP Wrap-up, we'll be profiling eight EP's released throughout November 2019 and maybe, a couple from a month or so prior, as well. Featured below, in no particular order, are EP's from the likes of Action Bronson & The Alchemist, Almost Elijah, CRASHprez & knowsthetime, ialive, Mikah kHill, Pecue, Rolled Gold, and Teek Hall. Along with a brief write-up on each release, you'll find a select track from each EP, as well purchase links to buy or stream online. If this one g…

Danger Mouse & Sparklehorse Share Unreleased "Ninjarous" Feat. MF DOOM from 30th CENTURY RECORDS, VOL. 2 (Words By: Connor Byrne)

"Unlikely Indie legends gift us with DOOM's best emcee effort this decade, through a track crafted by long-time collaborator Danger Mouse (Brian Burton) in [conjunction] with posthumous prolific song-writer, Sparklehorse (Mark Linkous.) Listeners already have precedent that only good could come from duo, Danger Mouse & MF DOOM, as their collaborative project, DANGERDOOM, gave us 2005's The Mouse & The Mask.

What differentiates The Mouse & The Mask from DOOM's dozens of other projects—aside from the Cartoon Network features—is DOOM acting solely as the emcee in this outfit, where he usually has a heavy role in production. It's easy to see how trust was formed, though, as Danger Mouse curated his trademark clean, unique beats that set DOOM up to verbally knock it out of the park on every track. "Ninjarous" makes no exception here and while it exhibits the sterile perfection of Danger Mouse in feel, the influence of Sparklehorse can be heard in…

Wilkes-Barre's Worn Unleash Pummeling "TOTAL DISEASE" B​/​W "HARM YOU" Digital Single & Cassette Tape (Pop Wig Records/self-released)

Worn are a Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania-based Hardcore/Punk band, which have been active since 2016. They're from the same ever-growing Wilkes-Barre Hardcore scene as fellow PAxHC thrashers, One Step Closer, who released their debut EP, FROM ME TO YOU, on Triple-B Records earlier this year. Worn either consists of "Butch - Guitar, Peter - Bass, Ross - Guitar, Caleb - Drums, Dan - Vocals," OR "BRIAN, CALEB, DANIEL, PETER, ROSS," as both listed on their Bandcamp page. Following this year's NOT YOUR GAME EP release on Scranton/Wilkes-Barre-based label, 12Forty Records, and, apparently, self-released LIVE! ON AXETOGRIND EP, Worn have returned with their latest offering, "TOTAL DISEASE" B​/​W "HARM YOU."

TOTAL DISEASE B/W HARM YOU by Worn
It was recorded, mixed, and mastered by Wyatt Oberholzer at The Knife Lair with drums performed by Mike Walsh, vocals on "TOTAL DISEASE" performed by Cole Paulson, and artwork created by Peter Maria. …

BRZOWSKI Returns with Blooddrive, Vol. 4 Comp. Featuring billy woods, E L U C I D, ialive, OneWerd, Willie Green & More (Milled Pavement Records)

BRZOWSKI, a self-described "touring Post-Rap artist hailing from the icy wastes of New England" hasn't released a proper full-length since 2017 critically-acclaimed ENMITYVILLE. Although, with that said, BRZO has stayed nothing short of inactive over the last nearly three years: 2018 saw the release of his I Had An Accident (IHAA) DIG 2 GRAVES split EP with MC Homeless, as well as 80HRTZ-produced single, "Cemetery Rose" Featuring Renée Coolbrith. So far, this year, in 2019, BRZOWSKI has released a cover of Woody Guthrie's iconic "This Land Is Your Land" from The Multiverse: Season 1, Episode 2, a 5-song score entitled Abduction Themes for a documentary called Otherworldly Amor, appeared on Zak G's "Propaganda" from his Milled Pavement Records-released album, Mutant, and appeared alongside D-FAZ for five tracks from their new album, OneNationUnderDog.

Blooddrive Vol. 4 by BRZOWSKI
On top of all that, BRZOWSKI has toured across France/…

Ex-Taking Back Sunday Members Fred Mascherino & Eddie Reyes Team Up for EMO NIGHT ON TOUR 2020 (The Color Fred/Fates Got A Driver)

Fred Mascherino & Eddie Reyes are both former members of beloved Long Island, New York-based Emo Pop/Post-hardcore band, Taking Back Sunday (TBS.) Mascherino was in TBS from 2003-07 and played on their seminal albums, Where You Want to Be (2004) and Louder Now (2007,) while Reyes was a founding member of TBS and played on nearly every release from 1999-2018. Eddie Reyes & Fred Mascherino played together on the aforementioned albums, Where You Want to Be & Louder Now, as well as 2007's The Louder Now DVD: PartTwo CD/DVD set. Since parting ways with Taking Back Sunday, Fred formed his own bands, The Color Fred & Terrible Things, and briefly played with both The Lemonheads & Say Anything. The Color Fred released their first album, Bend to Break, in 2007 and a follow-up EP, The Intervention, soon after in 2009. The Color Fred side-project, Terrible Things, released a self-titled album of their own in 2010 on Universal Motown Records, which included contributions fr…

Frank Turner Speaks On Möngöl Hörde & "Godfrey Newman" Ahead of NÖRTH AMERICAN INVASIÖN MMXIX Tour (The Witzard Interview)

"First emerging and playing two tiny shows in August 2012, plus, Reading & Leeds Festival, Möngöl Hörde released one of 2014's most twisted and ferocious albums with their self-titled debut, through Xtra Mile Recordings," explains Möngöl Hörde's Bandcamp page. Möngöl Hörde are an English Hardcore Punk/Post-hardcore band consisting of frontman Frank "Renrut" Turner, guitarist Matt "Nadir" Nasir, and drummer Ben "Awesome" Dawson. Nasir is part of Frank Turner & The Sleeping Souls and Turner & Dawson previously played together in Kneejerk & Million Dead. Frank Turner has achieved mass amounts of success on his own and with his backing band, The Sleeping Souls, but has seemingly always retained his Punk/Hardcore roots. For his popular The First/Second/Third Three Years compilation series, Turner has covered songs from everyone from Bad Brains to Bruce Springsteen.

Möngöl Hörde recently released their first new material toget…

Punk/Hardcore On Wax: DARK THOUGHTS Return with "DO YOU DREAM?" B/W "IT'S TOO LATE" 7-inch Single (Peterwalkee Records)

Since we last featured Philly-based D.I.Y. Pop-Punks DARK THOUGHTS, they've self-released a self-titled 2016 album and its 2018 follow-up, DARK THOUGHTS AT WORK. Now, it appears as though Daniel Cox, Amy Opsasnick & Jim Shomo have joined forces with Peterwalkee Records, Stupid Bag Records, and Drunken Sailor Records for the roll-out and eventual release of their third full-length album, MUST BE NICE. Ahead of MUST BE NICE, which will tentatively drop January 2020, DARK THOUGHTS have let loose their new single from the album, "DO YOU DREAM?" on both pink and black 7-inch, as well as digitally on Bandcamp. Side B of said 7-inch/digital single features a non-album track entitled "IT'S TOO LATE." It first became available on Halloween on 100 pink and 400 black vinyl 7-inches, but it appears as though, now, the pink vinyl has completely sold out. However, Peterwalkee Records still have a mass (yet limited) number of black 7-inches available to purchase for …

SFxPx/Bay Area Legends The Kegels Return with Blood & Wine EP & New Nick Pappas-directed Music Video (self-released)

The Kegels are a San Francisco-based Indie/Punk Rock & Rock "N" Roll band, which has been actively performing and recording ever since 2007. The Kegels' current line-up consists of guitarist & vocalist Mortimer "Morty" Lopez, bassist & vocalist Nico Suarez, drummer Brian Colli, and second guitarist & vocalist Adam Hiller. Face to Face, NOFX, Rancid, Lagwagon, Off With Their Heads, Hot Water Music, Strung Out, Dead to Me, AFI, and all kinds of Rock & Punk!!" are listed as Artists We Also Like on The Kegels'Facebook page. The Kegels' brand of unique Pop-friendly Punk Rock has been frequently described as sounding similar to that of both Pennywise & Bad Religion, as well. Morty, Nico, Brian & Adam have self-produced/released several EP's-worth of material over the years, forever cementing themselves as SF Bay Area staples; due in part to "No Tomorrow" from The Kegels'2012 album of the same name. The group …

Mega Ran Surprise Releases New Winter EP AGES, Vol. 1 Featuring Mickey Factz, SkyBlew, Xavier Woods & More (RandomBeats Music)

AGES, Vol. 1 by Mega Ran
We've been closely following Phoenix by way of Philly emcee Mega Ran's career since the earliest aughts of The Witzard, coinciding with the 2010 release of Bits & Rhymes (Ran & K-Murdock)'s Kickstarter-funded collaborative album, FOREVER famicom. Mega Ran &/or K-Murdock were amongst our first-ever published interviews here at The Witzard, as well. Needless to say, we've thoroughly enjoyed Ran's wide array of genre-eschewing output released nearly non-stop over the past 10 years since. His latest full-length effort, THE DEWEY DECIBEL SYSTEM with rapper buddy MC Lars, is a mic-aided journey through literature, novels, comic books, poems, short stories, etc. and is currently being used as a learning tool in class rooms Nation-wide. Now, Mega Ran has returned (once again) for one final solo project of 2019: AGES, Vol. 1. Technically, a "surprise Winter 2019 release," AGES—that's "SEGA" spelled backwards!—was …

Glass Animals Recruit Denzel Curry for "Tokyo Drifting" Latest Installment of Fresh Fruit Series (Republic Records/Wolf Tone Ltd.)

British Psychedelic/Art Pop four-piece Glass Animals have returned with their first entirely new taste of music since 2016's How to Be A Human Being. "Tokyo Drifting" is the latest addition to Glass Animals' ongoing Fresh Fruit series; previous installments have included "Gold Lime," a Yeah Yeah Yeahs & Erykah Badu mash-up and "Lose Control" featuring Joey Bada$$. For "Tokyo Drifting," Glass Animals frontman Dave "Wavey Davey" Bayley recruited Florida-based emcee, singer, and song-writer Denzel Curry. Glass Animals have previously worked with Joey Bada$$, Rome Fortune, Chester Watson, and Stones Throw signee Gabriel Garzón-Montano. Wavey Davey, on the other hand, has previously worked with a slew of Hip-Hop-adjacent artists on his own, as well, including 6lack, Khalid, DJ Dahi, MorMor, Safe, Mustafa The Poet, Suzi Wu, and Flume. Here's hoping this is just the first in a string of upcoming releases from Dave Bayley, Joe…

"(All I Want for Christmas Is to) Rage with My Friends" from PIEBALD Presents to You, A Musical Christmas Adventure EP [Photo Finish Records]

PIEBALD are a crew of Indie Rock/Emo bridge-builders hailing from Andover, Massachusetts, who initially "cut their teeth" within the same Hardcore Punk scene as both Converge & CAVE IN. PIEBALD were originally active from about 1994-2008 and started out as a Hardcore band, who always teetered the line between Post-hardcore, Emo, Emocore, and Alternative Rock, eventually, becoming a mainstay in the Greater Boston area Indie Rock scene. PIEBALD's last album's-worth of original music, Accidental Gentlemen, was released on SideOneDummy Records upon the band's dissolution in 2008; a live DVD/documentary set entitled NoBodY's RoBoTS: A Farewell to PIEBALD was issued in 2010 and chronicled the band's final two shows at The Bowery Ballroom & The Middle East. Since their 2008 disbandment, Andrew "Andy" Bonner, Lucian "Luke" Garro, Travis Shettel & Aaron Stuart have reunited as PIEBALD on multiple occasions between 2010-19.

Now, PIE…

J57 Unveils Widely/Re-released Version of Sophomore Album We Can Be Kings. FKA "LP2" (FiveSe7en Collective/Soulspazm)

We Can Be Kings by J57
James "J57" Heintz is a Brooklyn-based rapper, song-writer, producer, and record label owner. J57 is an active member of both Brown Bag Allstars & Jamo Gang with Ras Kass & El Gant and runs his own imprint, FiveSe7en Collective. Jay has previously worked with the likes of Method Man, Homeboy Sandman, Joey Bada$$, and La Coka Nostra featuring members of House of Pain & Limp Bizkit with ILL BILL & Slaine. J57 has now returned with the long-awaited follow-up to his 2016 solo debut, I'm The J57, entitled We Can Be Kings. Many of you may remember, We Can be Kings. was previously release last year (as LP2) for a brief one-week stint between December 8-15, 2018. We previously reviewed LP2: WE CAN BE KINGS. upon its initial 2018 release, which can still be read or perused here. We Can Be Kings. is an "eclectic offering" that features appearances from a wide of array of musicians—both Hip-Hop and non-Hip-Hop—including Katiah One, Th…

FRND CRCL Return with "Famous" Music Video & Digital Single from Upcoming 2020 Full-length (Ghost Killer Entertainment)

New Jersey-based Pop-Punk/Alternative band FRND CRCL have returned with their first single of 2019. "Famous" follows FRND CRCL's self-released 2018 EP, Promstarr. FRND CRCL's current line-up consists of Zac Johnson, Adam Skirvin, Dom Giacalone & Aaron Smith; oddly enough, I actually, used to work with Aaron at Shop Rite and went all through high school with Zac's older brother, Nick. FRND CRCL readily list blink-182, Green Day, Sum 41, Weezer, Good Charlotte, Red Hot Chili Peppers, The Beatles, Post Malone, Foo Fighters, Pinegrove, Moose Blood, You Me at Six, and My Chemical Romance amongst their "Artists We Also Like" on Facebook. FRND CRCL's "Famous" music video was premiered late last week at Minnesota-based Ghost Killer Entertainment. "Famous" features Adam Skirvin & Zac Johnson sharing vocal duties à la blink-182's Mark Hoppus & Tom DeLonge juxtaposed against a stark peach-colored background. FRND CRCL's…

Written Words: A Conversation with HAMMERED HULLS' Frontman Alec MacKaye & Guitarist Mark Cisneros (The Witzard Interview)

HAMMERED HULLS at Dischord House / CREDIT: Jim Saah

Not only will Alec MacKaye forever be immortalized as the iconic "cover model" for multiple 7+12-inch releases for his older brother, Ian's bands, Minor Threat & The Teen Idles, he has, also, been in countless Punk/HarDCore bands of his own: Untouchables, (The) Faith, Ignition, The Warmers, and Bells Of.. MacKaye has not been part of a band, let alone any musical project, for 20+ years, following the demise of The Warmers with Amy Farina & Juan Carrera in 1997. After an extended self-imposed musical sabbatical, Alec MacKaye has finally returned with a new band. HAMMERED HULLS, featuring an array of Punk/HarDCore mainstays: Mark Cisneros, Mary Timony & Chris Wilson. Together, Cisneros, Timony & Wilson have played with Acquaintances, American Hearts, Autoclave, Chain & The Gang, Deathfix, Des Demonas, EX HEX, The Firebird Suite, Green 4, Helium, Hound, KID CONGO & THE PINK MONKEY BIRDS, Led Byrd, TH…

Grave Danger Re-emerge with TOMB IT MAY CONCERN EP Featuring A "Skath" Cover of The Misfits' "Halloween" (Spooky Action Records)

"The world needs more Ska songs about skeletons and ghosts and stuff. 666th Wave Ska," reads the Bandcamp Bio of Berkeley, California-based Ska band, Grave Danger. Technically, Grave Danger have forged an entirely new genre for their releases: "Skath," which combines elements of both Ska & Goth, as well as Punk, Hardcore, and Rock. "The idea of a "Skath" band stems from a strange place: what would a Goth/Ska band sound like, one [that] combined The Misfits' aesthetic with Reel Big Fish's goofball schtick?" explains a Grave Danger press kit. Grave Danger is the brainchild of high school buds, David "Dave" Schwantes & Dane Erbach, who "spent the bulk of their gym class brainstorming fake bands with their friends, in an attempt to avoid whatever physical despair their P.E. teachers had in store for them that day." A selection of these faux groups included a "Death Metal" band called Throbbing Reaper, 8…