Latest Hits (Featured Post)

The Witzard Presents: Beastie Boys Paul's Boutique 30th Anniversary All-around Breakdown, Part I (PB30 "Side A") https://thewitzard.blogspot.com/2019/09/the-witzard-presents-beastie-boys-pauls_3.html

Friday, February 21, 2020

William J. Sullivan's Architects of A Broken Design Re-emerge with "The Name Stone" from Upcoming Album Total Collapse (Wreckin' Joint Productions)


William J. Sullivan is a producer, engineer, composer, and multi-instrumentalist now based out of Los Angeles, but originally hailing from Philly. He's released music, over the years, on his own label, Wreckin' Joint Productions, as/with Architects of A Broken Design, Memo, Priesticide, and Upon Creation, as well as under his own. We first heard about William J. Sullivan when he produced "Make The Sickness, Sell The Cure" from Zilla Rocca's phenomenal 2019 album, Future Former Rapper. Sullivan's Discogs page additionally lists Technical (Engineering) work on The Harlem Experiment's 2007 self-titled album, Leilolai, Zilla Rocca & The Shadow Boxers' No Vacation for Murder, Kanye West's The Life of Pablo, "Champions" with Gucci Mane, Big Sean, 2 Chainz, Travi$ Scott, Yo Gotti, Quavo & Desiigner, ye, and Kids See Ghosts with Kid Cudi, and ScHoolboy Q's Blank Face LP. Architects of A Broken Design is a Metal/Hardcore duo consisting of Sullivan and vocalist Jon Costello. They've been largely inactive since releasing their 2010 full-length, The Great Reflection—aside from a 2014 stand-alone single entitled "A Mask of Hell"—although, now they're preparing to make a proper return to form.


Architects of A Broken Design's second long-form project, Total Collapse, will be released on Wreckin' Joint Productions Friday, March 6, 2020. Ahead of the album, William J. Sullivan & Jon Costello have unveiled lead-off single, "The Name Stone." Today, we're treated to both an Album Version & Live Playthrough of "The Name Stone" self-released on Bandcamp. Next Friday, February 28, 2020, a companion music video for "The Name Stone" will be released and then, Monday, March 2, Puregrain Audio will be hosting an exclusive streaming premiere of Total Collapse until its wide release that following Friday. William J. Sullivan explains, "with this album, I found myself coming to terms with the fact that Jon & I probably won't perform with this project again. We live on different Coasts, have our own individual careers, and very little time. The album title is pulled from that, while, also, being a dedication to one of our favorite bands."


"I wanted to play into the hopelessness of our situation, the name of our group, and apply that to a larger picture. When we started this project in our early 20's, we looked at the world in a different way. Now that we're almost 40, the terms "Broken Design" and "Total Collapse" mean a much different, but real thing to us. Take the homeless and environmental problems where I live, in California, as examples," Sullivan continued within a press statement. Vocalist Jon Costello adds, "it's been a pleasure to be a part of this project since the begging. I'm most proud of these songs and the effort that I put into them. I really wanted them to hit home and, I believe, we did that." Total Collapse has been described as "a pounding 24-minute roller coaster ride of down-tuned groove" recommended for fans of The Dillinger Escape Plan, Meshuggah, Periphery, Suicide Silence, and other like-minded head-bangers. Architects of A Broken Design's Total Collapse is out Friday, March 6, 2020 on Sullivan's own Wreckin' Joint Productions.

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Guts of The Ice - An Exploration of "Puck" Rock/Hockey-core #1: Crippled Youth - Join The Fight 7-inch (New Beginning/Revelation Records)


Not entirely unlike Wrestle/Wrassle Rap or Basketball Rap, there's, apparently, a whole sub-genre of hockey-themed Punk/Hardcore—oftentimes, referred to as "Puck" Rock or Hockey-core. Yes, I've been a die-hard fan of Punk/Hardcore for 15+ years and I, too, only first heard about Puck Rock within the last few weeks. Although, once I started diggin' around, I discovered about 10-15 bands at the forefront; this was, then, gradually narrowed down to 10 "front-line" bands, which will be chronicled here over the course of coming weeks. The "top-scoring" bands we selected include: Crippled Youth, SLAPSHOT, The Hanson Brothers/Nomeansno, Two Man Advantage, The Boils, D.O.A. THE ZAMBONIS, Pansy Division, The Hextalls, and The Ramoms' "Gritty Is A Punk" flexi-disc. We sent out a short 6-question interview form to all of the aforementioned bands, received some back, heard a few choice words, and still have yet to hear from a few more. We'll be running those interviews, as well as features, profiles, etc. in the coming weeks. EDITOR'S NOTE: be warned, while I'm a casual of hockey, I DO NOT claim to be an "expert" on the sport, nor will I EVER claim to know "everything" about hockey-themed Punk/Hardcore. Now, let's just try to have some fun and learn more about the sub-genre together!

This week's inaugural band is Crippled Youth, which seems to have been a very short-lived band and later, morphed into BOLD. Unfortunately, we didn't get a Response back from anyone in Crippled Youth/BOLD... but Revelation Records' owner and co-founder Jordan Cooper was kind enough to send us a couple pertinent REVHQ FUN FACT installments concerning both hockey-themed Punk/Hardcore and Crippled Youth's iconic 1986 7-inch, Join The Fight. While it isn't exactly "Puck" Rock, it's been stressed to us, by numerous people, that this 7-inch EP/cover was very important to the sub-genre, as well as the genres as a whole. You can learn more about Crippled Youth, Youth Crew Hardcore, and the so-called "Jock Punk" look at Rolling Stone. Special shout-outs are due to Dan Lactose, Dave "Zamboni" Schneider from THE ZAMBONIS, "Captain" Jeff Kaplan from Two Man Advantage, Jordan Cooper, Adam Lentz & David "Igby" Sattanni at Revelation Records, Christian Wagner at Pirates Press Records, Dave "Sausage" Walling from The Boils/Six Feet Under Records, and John Bachman, who helped coordinate this fine mess! Enj-Oi! our latest column, Guts of The Ice - An Exploration of "Puck" Rock/Hockey-core, and stay safe out on the ice, my friends! 💀🏒⛸️


5/2/14
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REVHQ FUN FACT
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If you've seen the Crippled Youth - Join The Fight 7" cover and aren't steeped in sports history, you may have wondered what the origin of the hockey photo was and how it ended up on the cover of the record.

The photo was taken by Roger St. Jean after the 1952 Stanley Cup Semi-Finals with The Bruins & The Canadiens. During the seventh game at The Montreal Forum, Maurice "The Rocket" Richard of The Canadiens was bleeding from a concussion suffered earlier in the game, when he returned in the Third Period to score the winning goal. In that play, he skated end-to-end, weaving through The Bruins players, out in front of the net, and put the puck behind startled [Bruins] goaltender "Sugar" Jim Henry. After the game, Henry shook hands with Richard in what became one of the most famous sports images of all time.

We asked Crippled Youth bassist Tim Brooks about it and this is what he had to say: "as for the hockey player image, my father is a huge hockey fan and sports memorabilia collector. He has a 2' x 3' print of the [picture] hanging on the wall in his home office. Matt, Drew & I liked the idea of these rivals coming together at the end of a brutal game and shaking hands." Check out the Crippled Youth cover and original image here.


4/28/17
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REVHQ FUN FACT
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In appreciation of the current NHL Playoffs, we thought it'd be fun to come up with a list of Hardcore/Punk connections to The NHL or hockey, in general. Enjoy...

Russ Rankin, vocalist of Good Riddance & Only Crime, worked as a hockey scout for The Kootenay Ice and now, works for The Tri City Americans. Both are major junior hockey teams in The Western Hockey League.

Former goalie for The Montreal Canadiens, Jose Theodore, is a big fan of NOFX and once played guitar on stage with them at a show in Montreal.

POWER TRIP gets played over the PA at Anaheim Ducks & Calgary Flames games.

Bo Thompson, former vocalist for Donnybrook! & Snakeyes, has a cousin named Mitch Callahan, who once played for The Detroit Red Wings.

Former Maple Leaf player Boyd Devereaux once ran an underground Noise label called Elevation Recordings.

Joey Sh*thead from D.O.A. released hockey-themed compilations on his label, Sudden Death [Records] (which, itself, obviously, got its name from hockey.)

Drew Stafford, Boston Bruin (formerly of The Buffalo [Sabres] & Winnipeg Jets) appeared in the Every Time I Die video for "Decayin' with The Boys," playing Jenga at a party in full hockey gear.

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

With The Quickness #3: James Reitano of TFU Studios/Boots N Booze Selects Punk & Skinhead Reggae Staples for The Witzard (Exclusive Playlist)


James Reitano is a director, animator, graphic designer, illustrator, and devout Skinhead. No, not THAT kind of "Skinhead!" A different kind of Skinhead... one often motivated by social alienation and working-class solidarity, who could often be seen wearing their hair close-cropped or shaven and working-class clothing, such as Dr. Martens/steel-toe work boots, braces, high-rise and varying length straight-leg jeans, and button-down collar shirts, usually, slim-fitting in check or plain. Skinhead Punk/Reggae was initially popular in The United Kingdom during the 1960's and experienced a second wave of popularity through the mid-70's to early 80's world-wide. Reitano currently runs a "tradition Skin-zine" out of Santa Cruz, California called Boots N Booze (or @bootsnboozemagazine on Instagram) which regularly posts archival photos, nostalgic show flyers, sought-after 7/12-inch covers, and Skin-centric nuggets of information. James Reitano, also, runs a production company called Proper Skins Productions and has his own multi-volume line of graphic novels entitled Nineteen85/87.

Reitano operates under his own company, TFU Studios/T.F.U. Recordings and previously worked for Santa Cruz Skateboards, Digital Entertainment Network, and FOX.com, as well as campaigns for HBO, iFilm, Toyota, and Nike. James Reitano has directed/animated music videos or album artwork for Cut Chemist, CZARFACE & MF DOOM, DANGERDOOM, The Dickies, Mayer Hawthorne, KutMasta Kurt, MADVILLAIN, Manchester Orchestra, Biz Markie, Quasimoto, and 12th Planet & Skrillex. Reitano was, additionally, part of his own short-lived bands, Buddys Riot & Apocalypse Con Queso, as well. On the heels of newly-pressed Nineteen Eighty Seven, Vol. 3, James Reitano was kind enough to curate a playlist we're calling "With The Quickness #3: James Reitano's Punk/Reggae Playlist for The Witzard!" Below, you will find James' 19-track Spotify playlist, along with some commentary from our resident Skinhead Reggae/Punk specialist himself. The 1985 Anthology and Nineteen Eighty Seven, Vol. 1-3 graphic novels are currently available to purchase directly from Nineteen85. There's, also, a newly-launched companion Nineteen Eighty Five/1985 Graff Map available to download, via the iPhone & Android App Stores.


With The Quickness #3: James Reitano's Punk/Reggae Playlist for The Witzard! Breakdown

01. 4 Skins - "One Law for Them:" An awesome opener by the band with one of the best names. 'cause, know, the band's comprised of Four Skinheads!

02. The Redskins - "Go Get Organized:" One of the more dedicated and serious Socialist bands with just about all songs involving Socialist politics. And, musically, one of the greatest rhythm sections. Put it this way, these guys would be campaigning for Bernie, if they were Yanks.

03. Laurel Aitken - "Fire In Mi Wire:" Some great innuendos going on here, as well as one of the BEST baselines of all time.

04. Bay City Rollers - "Saturday Night:" A crew fave here! Perfect for drinking outside in damp conditions.

The 4-Skins, 1980 (photographer unknown)

05. The Upsetters - "Dry Acid:" A classic here! An epitome of Skinhead Reggae, if there ever was one.

06. The Business - "Out In The Cold:" Punk Rock royalty here, when they were writing sappier, love songs. We'd refer [to] these tracks as "Fancy Business!"

07. The Kingstonians - "Sufferer:" A classic 1969 Reggae classic!

08. U-Roy - "Driver Her Home:" Talkover great U-Roy. He didn't invent it, but he was a true pioneer of "Talkover Dub," the predecessor to Hip-Hop/Rap!

09. Lee "Scratch" Perry - "Fu Man Version:" Stoney Dub track here with Lee's rambling vocals over the top!

10. Sham 69 - "Hurry Up Harry:" Jimmy Pursey! The true man of the people, in this rousing track of "goin' down to pub." "No, I don't want a cup of tea!" (* Not Available On Spotify... *)


11. The Outer Limits - "Just One More Chance:" Some Blue-eyed Northern Soul from these lads from Leeds.

12. Toy Dolls - "Idle Gossip:" Though, these guys are good in small doses (I compare these guys to audio espresso,) but one of my favorite LP's from them!

13. The Business - "Employers Blacklist:" Here we go! Another Business track. Punk... Rock... right here!

14. Splodge - "Two Pints" (Dub Version): Punk/Novelty act, [Splodgenessabounds]. Their classic tune expressing the frustration of being ignored at the bar.

15. Prince Buster - "Enjoy Yourself:" Later covered by The Specials, this is one of my favorites from The Prince!

U-Roy (photographer unknown)

16. Lloydie & The Lowbites - "Birth Control:" Some serious blatant references here! Again, later to be covered by The Specials [on] Too Much Too Young!

17. The Undertones - "Hypnotised:" When some bands wrote about the war zones of Northern Ireland, these guys kept it light with some of the best songs ever written!

18. The Last Resort - "Skinheads In Sta Press:" From the all-time incredible Way of Life LP, Last Resort were like no other band!

19. Jr. Walker & The All Stars - "What Does It Take (to Win Your Love):" Closing things out with one of my all-time favorite Northern Soul tracks!

Friday, February 14, 2020

Members of One Step Closer, Strength for A Reason & Worn Release Vicious Existence EP As Choice to Make (Flatspot Records)

CREDIT: Spencer Chamberlain (Ngagency)

Choice to Make is a Hardcore band from the ever-growing Wilkes-Barre/Scranton scene, which consists of WORN, One Step Closer, Cold World, Final Descent, Heart Out, Frostbite, True Identity, and more. Choice to Make is made up of members of One Step Closer, Strength for A Reason & WORN; consisting of vocalist Nate, guitarist Caleb, second guitarist Ryan, bassist T.K. and drummer Adam. Nate, Caleb, Ryan, T.K. & Adam previously released a self-titled demo in 2018 on 12Forty Records and a Promo 2019 EP (boasting a Dracula cover!) through Street of Hate fan'zine. Now, they're returned with a new EP entitled Vicious Existence through Baltimore-based Flatspot Records. We recently received a press release from a firm managing Flatspot Records, which readily compares Choice to Make's sound across the EP to "early Biohazard, late 80's Agnostic Front, and Underdog." It does have a bit of an underlying Thrash Metal vibe, comparable to early Anthrax, Testament, and even Metallica when they were still actively covering The Misfits.


"In a scene riddled with fashion-first "Punk" upstarts and breakdown fetishists, Choice to Make delivers a vital dose of Hardcore that is equally confrontational and groovy with roots buried evenly the classics of Hardcore and the modern landmarks that have shaped the genre's development over the past two decades," said press release continues. Little else is know about the band, but much like many of their Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Hardcore scene peers, Choice to Make's Vicious Existence EP is undoubtedly a stone cold stomper! Two pre-release singles, "Disconnect" & "June" were premiered at NO ECHO & CVLT NATION, respectively, and yesterday, Brooklyn Vegan hosted an exclusive full album stream. Choice to Make's next scheduled tour date is: 03/20 - Wilkes Barre, PA at Karl Hall (Record Release Show) with Death Threat, Mindforce, HANGMAN, Victory Garden & The Answer. Choice to Make's Vicious Existence EP is out now on Flatspot Records.


Thursday, February 13, 2020

LUKE SICK & WOLFAGRAM Share "650" from Upcoming YEGG WAR Cassette Teased In 36CrazyFists #4 (IRON LUNG Records)


"Luke Sick is, also, working with Toronto beat-maker Andrew Nolan AKA WOLFAGRAM (Intensive Care, Column of Heaven) for a full-length tape release through IRON LUNG Records. The working title is: Yegg War..." read a blurb in the June 2019 installment of 36CrazyFists. 36CF is a digital/emailed 'zine run by SPAZZ's Dan Lactose AKA DJ Eons One. In addition to SPAZZ, Lactose has recorded and released music with Superbad, Funeral Shock, DANK GOBLINS, Deny The Cross, Grand Invincible/Collab, Underbucket, and CCCRRCCSSLLRRKKRRSSS, as well as a gaggle of other bands and runs his own label imprint, Tinted Windows Record Co. A few of the aforementioned groups have been with Megakut Records & Gurp City's own Luke Sick AKA Clell Miller & J. Luke Oakson. Earlier this morning, some additional details and release specifics concerning Yegg War have been properly announced to the masses: LUKE SICK & WOLFAGRAM's Yegg War project will be released on cassette and digital album on Friday, March 13, 2020.


According to IRON LUNG's Bandcamp page, Yegg War boasts beats by WOLFAGRAM, raps by Luke Sick, cuts & scratches from DJ Raw, cover art designed by Dan Lactose, and layout by Damien "IHAA" Miller. Additionally, Yegg War was fully produced, mixed, and mastered by newcomer WOLFAGRAM and was recorded over the summer of 2019. Let's just be completely honest here, with that cast of characters, Yegg War is gonna be nothing short of fantastic! Along with all that information, IRON LUNG Records has let loose the first proper single from LUKE SICK & WOLFAGRAM's Yegg War, simply entitled "650." It's a 3-minute slice of dusty, vinyl crackle-filled old school Boom-Bap/Hip-Hop, which has been described as "a little drugged, a little thugged, and criminally smooth." Yegg War cassettes (CS) are limited to 200 pro-dubbed high-bias cassettes in a classic J-card and clear/clear Norelco box. Both cassette and digital copies of LUKE SICK & WOLFAGRAM's Yegg War are currently available for pre-order directly from IRON LUNG Records.

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Amy Farina & Fugazi's Ian MacKaye & Joe Lally Re-emerge with "Clean Kill" from CORIKY's Self-titled Debut (Dischord Records)


Ian, Joe & Amy (CORIKY) 2019 Fort Reno, Washington, DC / CREDIT: Claire Packer

Not only has Alec MacKaye returned with his first active band in 20+ years, HAMMERED HULLS, his brother, Ian MacKaye, has now re-surfaced with a newly-minted group of his own: CORIKY [pronounced: "ko-ri-kee."] Supposedly, coriky is "a dice game, like liar's poker," according to photographer Mark R. Bacon. A recent Dischord Records press release simply explains, "Coriky is a band from Washington, DC. Amy Farina plays drums. Joe Lally plays bass. Ian MacKaye plays guitar. All sing. Formed in 2015, Coriky did not play their first show until 2018. They have recorded one album. They hope to tour." In their earliest aughts, CORIKY, then-unnamed, were often billed as "Amy Ian Joe (Name Unknown,)" "Ian, Amy & Joe," and, I've heard, at one point, were even toying with going by The Odds; an homage to husband and wife, Ian MacKaye & Amy Farina's other band, The Evens. Together, Amy, Ian & Joe have collectively spent time playing with Ataxia, The Black Sea, Decahedron, Egg Hunt, Embrace, The Evens, Fugazi, The Messthetics, Minor Threat, Pailhead, Sevens, The Slinkees, Skewbald / Grand Union, The Teen Idles, and The Warmers. Anyways, I've been hearing rumblings about CORIKY for quite a few months now... and just yesterday, Amy Farina, Joe Lally & Ian MacKaye triumphantly returned with their debut single as CORIKY, "Clean Kill."


Along with said single, CORIKY have announced their signing to Ian MacKaye & Jeff Nelson's iconic imprint, Dischord Records, as well as the announcement of their self-titled debut album. I believe, it was promised CORIKY would sound something like "Fugazi meets The Evens," which makes complete sense, and "Clean Kill" does, in fact, sound like a fusion of both legendary DC area bands. As stated above, "Clean Kill" features Ian MacKaye on guitar, Joe Lally on bass, and Amy Farina on drums with all three providing vocals at various points throughout. It's a phenomenal "coming out" track and, hopefully, will represent what's to come from CORIKY's self-titled debut full-length. Although, likely, most promising, to us, at least, are the instrumental breakdowns and about the last 40-seconds to minute of "Clean Kill," as here, CORIKY show a bit more of their decades-old Punk/Hardcore roots. CORIKY, supposedly worked on said material with Ian MacKaye & Joe Lally's long-time collaborator, producer, and engineer Don Zientara's Inner Ear Studios. Either way, we can almost promise, it's definitely gonna be something to experience for fans both old and new. CORIKY's self-titled debut full-length will be released Friday, March 27, 2020 on Dischord Records.


c o r i k y Lyrics Sheet / CREDIT: 7 Inch Gold Blade (@7_and_7_is)

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

DRAIN Share "Sick One" from Debut CALIFORNIA CURSED & Re-create Iconic 1987 Santa Cruz Skateboards Poster (Revelation Records)

CREDIT: Eric Palozzolo, 2019 (Left) & Tim Piumarta, 1987-ish (Right)

DRAIN is a Santa Cruz, California-based Metal-tinged Crossover/Hardcore Punk band, who are, seemingly, obsessed with sharks; particularly, late 90's crime-fighting half-man/half-sharks and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles knock-off, Street Sharks. DRAIN first commissioned Raul Cruz to design some Street Sharks-like characters to be featured across the cover for their 2-track Promo 2018 EP, which was, later, slightly modified as the Default picture for the band's Twitter profile, drain831 (@drain831.) Behind the bloodthirsty sharks, DRAIN consists of vocalist Sam "Sammy" Ciaramitaro, guitarist Cody "Codster" Chavez, bassist Justin Rhode, and drummer Tim "Timmy" Flegal. Now, DRAIN have returned with a new single, "Sick One," from their full-length debut, CALIFORNIA CURSED, which, also, boasts shark-laden artwork. It's an adorable little "Baby" Shark designed by Derek Pratt complete with sunglasses, blood drips from his collar, and, of course, Heavy Metal studded wristbands. "Sick One" is definitely, as its title suggests, a "sick one," clocking in at just 58-seconds, but repeated listens will, more likely than not, turn your brain to sludge.


Just yesterday afternoon, DRAIN uploaded "Sick One" to their Bandcamp page and, additionally, shared a visualizer for what they're calling a "succinct, hard-hitting, groove-laden" single. Although, while "Sick One" IS our first official taste of DRAIN's Revelation Records debut, CALIFORNIA CURSED, it, actually, isn't the first song we're hearing from the album... DRAIN's aforementioned Promo 2018 (or 2018 Promo) EP, lo and behold—although, we didn't know it at the time!—featured two additional cuts from then-untitled debut, CALIFORNIA CURSED, "Army of One" & "California Cursed." Only formed as recently as 2016, prior to the release of their Over Thinking EP, DRAIN have already amassed quite the reputation for their impassioned, unhinged live shows, mesmerizing crowds at Sound & Fury 2019, This Is Hardcore 2019, and mostly recently, LDB Fest 2020. "We feel that our shows embody what it means to truly be alive. There is no facade and no cosplay, as to who we are," frontman Sam Ciaramitaro explains. "We just play every show like it's our last and encourage everyone in the room to be whoever they want to be and do whatever they want to do," Ciaramitaro continued.


Another "Fun Fact" about DRAIN: while they're the latest in a long line of Punk/Hardcore bands hailing from Santa Cruz, they seem to be actively paying tribute to their forefathers. Up above, you'll see a poster-sized image of skateboarder Henry Gartland launching himself over a frenzied DRAIN. It's an homage to an iconic 1987-ish shot of skateboarder/Santa Cruz Bicycles co-founder Rob Roskopp hurling himself over BL'AST! in an eerily similar manner. BL'AST! have been active on-and-off since 1983 and their various line-ups have featured Joey Castillo (The Bronx,) William Duvall (Alice In Chains,) Chuck Dukowski (Black Flag,) Dave Grohl, and Nick Oliveri (Queens of The Stone Age.) Scroll Down to see a video on the making-of DRAIN & Henry Gartland's re-creation of BL'AST & Rob Roskopp's iconic '87 poster. DRAIN's full-length debut, CALIFORNIA CURSED, was produced by Taylor Young (Twitching Tongues, NAILS, Code Orange) at The Pit Recording Studio. CALIFORNIA CURSED will be released on Friday, April 10, 2020 on Revelation Records. Pre-orders for the eagerly-awaited 10-track album will go live at REVHQ starting Monday, March 2, 2020.

Monday, February 10, 2020

Spanish Love Songs Return with "Beachfront Property" Music Video from New Album Brave Faces Everyone (Pure Noise Records)

CREDIT: Katie Neuhof (Pure Noise Records)

Spanish Love Songs are a five-piece Los Angeles-based Punk/Indie Rock band consisting of guitarist and vocalist Dylan Slocum, guitarist Kyle McAulay, bassist Trevor Dietrich, drummer Ruben Duarte, and keyboardist Meredith Van Woert. Initially formed in 2014, Spanish Love Songs have released two fill-length albums and an EP on Wiretap Records, Bearded Punk Records, Uncle M Music, and A-F Records. Spotify and Bandcamp, also, list an additional Name-Your-Price album-length collection entitled LITTLE GIANTS from 2016, which appears to consist primarily of acoustic/demo recordings. Currently abroad on a three-week UK/EU tour supporting The Menzingers, Spanish Love Songs just released their third highly-anticipated album, Brave Faces Everyone, this past Friday, via Pure Noise Records. Brave Faces Everyone was preceded by three pre-album singles/music videos, "Losers," "Kick," and most recently, "Beachfront Property." Last week, prior to the full album's release, Spanish Love Songs, along with FLOOD Magazine, premiered one final music video for "Beachfront Property," as directed by Ian Shelton & Will Acuña.


It's a well-executed clip for one of the catchiest songs on an extremely catchy album; Shelton & Acuña, basically, just filmed Spanish Love Songs performing "Beachfront Property" in front of a red sports car (maybe, an old Mercedes Benz?) in a stark red-colored room, but it's very effective! Brave Faces Everyone was recorded late last year with Spanish Love Songs' in-house producer/guitarist Kyle McAulay at Howard Benson's West Valley Recording Studios and has already drawn comparisons to the works of Bruce Springsteen, The Menzingers, and Manchester Orchestra. A sort of running mantra/theme through the album is "when you're young, you just want to be heard," as frontman Dylan Slocum laments. "If you sing something loud enough and long enough, hopefully, people are able to find some peace in that," Slocum laments within an album press release. Again, Spanish Love Songs are currently on a UK/EU tour in support of The Menzingers through February 15, 2020 and will be embarking on their own State-side tour starting Thursday, February 20th supporting The Wonder Years, alongside Free Throw & Pool Kids. Spanish Love Songs' Brave Faces Everyone is now available in both physical and digital formats directly from Pure Noise Records.

Friday, February 7, 2020

Roughneck Jihad & Awkward Join Forces for "DROMEDARY," The First In A Series of Upcoming One-off Singles? (EOOM/Ghost Locust Music)


Late last night, I noticed a Tweet from Roughneck Jihad (@roughneckjihad) which read, "Check our this continent-spanning Hip-Hop collaboration with the beat and cuts by @AwkwardUK and the rhyme by yours truly, Roughy Rough." It included a mysterious YouTube link labelled "MC Roughneck Jihad and DJ Awkward "Dromedary."' Bay Area emcee Roughneck Jihad and Bristol, UK-based producer Awkward have, in fact, collaborated before, but, seemingly, not to this degree. Awkward mastered Jihad's 2018 Red Herring Mixtape and years prior, produced "Amen" & "Barbarian" from Third Sight's 2016 album, IV. Within a 2018 All-around Breakdown for his Red Herring Mixtape, Roughneck Jihad told The Witzard, "in addition, [Awkward] is remixing a narrative/comic book album, The Red Sentence, for me." Supposedly, according to Awkward, "DROMEDARY" is "just a taster and there will be more to come. Perhaps, some singles [and] maybe, a full-length..." When I posed the question, "Damn, so we're really gonna get a continent-spanning full-length album from MC @ROUGHNECKJIHAD + DJ @AWKWARDUK?!!!??!" Roughneck Jihad Replied, "Yes, one single at a time." "DROMEDARY" is just what I've come to expect from Roughneck Jihad: eerily poignant bars backed with quick-strike comic relief juxtaposed against a glitchy beat provided by Awkward that sounds like it's self-destructing and falling apart not-by-note.


So, it sounds like, in time, or, maybe, even single-by-single, we'll get a continent-spanning full-length collaborative project from Roughneck Jihad & Awkward. Awkward has previously worked with Open Mike Eagle, Quakers' 7STU7, Stepasaur/Stepchild AKA Gary "Gee" Ealey of Malakai fame, N8NOFACE, Isaiah Toothtaker, and countless other sharp-tongued emcees. Awkward, additionally, released two volumes-worth of Beastie Boys remixes as POSSE IN EFFECT on his own Ghost Locust Music and contributed a blurb about "Hello Brooklyn" ("B-Boy Bouillabaisse") for our extensive Beastie Boys Paul's Boutique 30th Anniversary All-around Breakdown, Part II (PB30 "Side B.") To any effect, "DROMEDARY" is a hard-as-nails slice of nostalgic Boom-Bap/Hip-Hop that's definitely worth checking out for long-time fans, as well as new-comers. MC Roughneck Jihad & DJ Awkward's "DROMEDARY" is now streaming exclusively on Awkward's roastlonely YouTube channel. Stay tuned for more from these extremely prolific cross-continental collaborators! It's, also, worth noting Roughneck Jihad & The Diabolical Doctor Strange are currently holding a remix contest for their 2019 collaborative effort, THE ADVENTURES OF DR. VOODUN. Remix producers are urged to reach out directly to @jihadtheroughneckmc on Instagram for further details.

Thursday, February 6, 2020

TYPECASTE's New BETWEEN LIFE EP Premiered at HARD NOISE & Rain of Salvation Release "The Sound of Triumph" (Flatspot Records)


CREDIT: James Grottola (Flatspot Records)

TYPECASTE is a "Long Boston" (Long Island/Boston)-based 90's Metalcore-leaning Punk/Hardcore band. As of February 2020, TYPECASTE is signed to Baltimore imprint, Flatspot Records, and consists of frontman Dylan Carlo and additional members, Sean, Joey, Ray & Marazzo—yes, it's nearly impossible to find their last names online! Following a self-titled 2017 DEMO EP and critically-acclaimed creature of habit EP (2018) TYPECASTE have returned with their third consecutive EP entitled BETWEEN LIFE. Late last month, world-renown Heavy Metal magazine, KERRANG! ran an exclusive premiere of pummeling BETWEEN LIFE EP track, "Traverse," and now, The Hard Times & Pure Noise Records' HARD NOISE has run their own "ALBUM PREMIERE" of the full 4-track EP. Although, it clocks in at less than 12 minutes total, BETWEEN LIFE really is a skull-crusher, honestly, more so indebted to Metal/Metalcore than Punk/Hardcore.


You can instantly tell Dylan Carlo, Sean, Joey, Ray & Marazzo really give it all they've got and by the final note of closer "Under The Wreath," have sincerely left it all on the table. When asked by HARD NOISE interviewer Fred Pessaro how BETWEEN LIFE differed from TYPECASTE's previously released EP's, Carlo responded, "[for] this EP, we wanted to push things even further. Just show progression in the band's creativity to help shape our own. I know Sean has [spoken] about wanting to create our own "world," like, how he feels other bands do." Dylan Carlo continued, "I agree with him and love the idea of creating something that is ourselves. Lyrically, I wanted to become a better writer and I hope we all improved! I feel like we all pushed ourselves to do the best we could. I'm proud of this release." Carlo, additionally, explained to HARD NOISE that TYPECASTE always knew "Under The Wreath" was going to be the EP closer "because it's a big song."


"It is, probably, the most progressive or different TYPECASTE song..." I would have to strongly agree with frontman Dylan Carlo, as their BETWEEN LIFE EP is great as a whole, but listen after listen, "Under The Wreath" really leaves a lasting impression. TYPECASTE will soon be embarking on a North American Tour with like-minded skull-crushers, Sanction, SeeYouSpaceCowboy & Vamachara from 2/15-3/21/20. Oddly enough, members of TYPECASTE are, also, part of Rain of Salvation, along with select players from SeeYouSpaceCowboy, Adrenaline, and other Long Island/Delaware/Connecticut area bruisers. Earlier this week, Rain of Salvation self-released their latest single, "The Sound of Salvation," on Bandcamp for just $1.00 or more. TYPECASTE's BETWEEN LIFE EP will see a wide release tomorrow, Friday, February 7, 2020 on Flatspot Records.

Wednesday, February 5, 2020

Jade Hairpins Revealed to Be Jonah Falco & Mike Haliechuk from F*CKED UP, Plot February 2020 UK Tour Behind 2018 12-inch (Merge Records)


Jade Hairpins quietly released a 12-inch/digital single on Merge Records back in October 2018 consisting of two 7+ minute-long tracks, "Mother Man" & "Gracefully." Discogs list their Genre/Style as Electronic, Rock, Pop, Synth-Pop, and Indie Rock and Jade Hairpins themselves label their genre as "Alternative" on Bandcamp. I'm, personally, reminded a bit of the bleeps and blips of The Bravery, The Cure, Four Tet, LCD Soundsystem, and New Order. Seemingly, out of nowhere, Monday afternoon, Merge Records (@mergerecords) mysteriously Tweeted, "~ t o m o r r o w ~," along with a 9-second video and a glowing Jade Hairpins logo. As promised, the following day, Tuesday, February 4, 2020, @mergerecords Tweeted, "Hhhhhaayyyyyeeeeelllllloooo! Back in 2018, Jade Hairpins emerged mysteriously like a pair of cranes from a tall grove, shared their immediately danceable debut 12-inch single, "Mother Man" B/W "Gracefully," and just as quickly, receded back into the shade." It was followed up by yet another Tweet, which read, "... turns out, Jade Hairpins is the brainchild of Jonah Falco & Mike Haliechuk of @F*CKEDUP infamy. Together, they will present the debut live performances of Jade Hairpins this month in The United Kingdom!"


It has since been revealed within a Merge Records press release that the clues were, in fact, there all along: Tankcrimes released F*CKED UP's 2018 "High Rise" 7-inch ahead of Dose Your Dreams, backed by the B-side, "Tower On Time," which was credited to Jade Hairpins. Plus, if you were to comb back through the unsung lyrics for Dose Your Dreams' "Accelerate," you'll find the line, "her hair was pinned by jade." I'll say this much, it definitely doesn't sound anything even remotely similar to F*CKED UP, but Jade Hairpins, indeed, rock in their own way; you can tell Jonah & Mike are having fun flexing their non-Punk/Hardcore abilities, as a "side-band" is intended to do! It appears as though F*CKED UP frontman Damian Abraham, much like the rest of the world, knew absolutely nothing about Jonah Falco & Mike Haliechuk's involvement in Jade Hairpins, as made apparent by a string of recent Tweets. In celebration of their very public "coming out" as Jade Hairpins, Falco & Haliechuk will be embarking on a February 2020 UK Tour from 2/14-23 with openers Nation Unrest, Basic D*cks & High Vis. Jade Hairpins' 2018 debut, "Mother Man" B/W "Gracefully" is still available in both physical and digital formats through Merge Records.


"So, Mike & Jonah have a new band that I know nothing about! Check it out... as I will be doing, too! Yo, it just hit me: Mike & Jonah are kinda handsome, huh? No wonder people always ask... me... if I'm the drummer... UPDATE: It does not sound like Ruination or Scare Tactic. UPDATE #2: I dig it! It sounds like a record Mike would have made fun of me for buying at #RicsCollectables (RIP) back when were were in our 20's. Go see them on tour and tell Jonah I [say,] "hello," BUT NOT MIKE! J/K say, "hello" to Mike. Also, if you are a wrestling fan, please, talk to him as much as you can about UK Pro-Wrestling! @InsaneChampWres, @ThisIs_Progress, @ProWrestlingEVE, #WorldOfSport: He loves it all! (He's kinda shy, so you may have to work on him to open up about his passion.)"

- Damian "Pink Eyes" Abraham (@leftfordamian)

Tuesday, February 4, 2020

ialive Returns with "Arabian Hash" Feat. Day Tripper & Curly Castro from Guest-heavy I'LL WAIT FOREVER (Cold Rhymes Records)


Monday morning, self-described "Rap singer, song-writer, beat-maker, and pal" Donovan "ialive" Phillips quietly announced he'll be releasing his fourth (fifth?) solo studio album, I'LL WAIT FOREVER, later this month. It will be his fourth consecutive release with Baltimore-based Cold Rhymes Records run and operated by Dan "Height" Keech & MISTER AKA Cool Guy Bry. We first heard about ialive through an interview posted by John "Jumbled" Bachman on his blog a few years back with both Donnie & Darko The Super, together, billed as The Hellhole Store. ialive's Height Keech-produced TIMEWAVE ZERO (2017) and self-produced follow-up, DON'T DO NOTHING (2019) were, easily, two of our favorite Hip-Hop albums of the last few years. I'LL WAIT FOREVER is the direct follow-up to ialive's Odds & Ends-style 2019 EP, ODD ORTS, which boasts remixes from both Juan Cosby & Unsung. Now, it appears as though this collaborative nature was a bit of a precursor to what we now know as I'LL WAIT FOREVER, which is, honestly, still a bit unexpected from typical "lone wolf" ialive. Regardless of said circumstances, I'LL WAIT FOREVER is being billed as ialive's "first attempt to gather all of his favorites and allow them to do their thing over his productions."


For I'LL WAIT FOREVER, ialive has recruited the vocal abilities of some of his close friends and live performance buddies, including The Witzard regulars Zilla Rocca, Torito, GOLDZILLA, Sleep Sinatra, Uncommon Nasa, Darko The Super, Height Keech, MISTER, Day Tripper, Ray Strife, Lt Headtrip, GooGiE, and Unsung. I'LL WAIT FOREVER will, additionally, feature "new-comers" (at least, to us) Painted Faces, Dizzo, Cat Park, Curly Castro, andrew. Yikes The Zero, and The Binary Marketing Show. Monday night, ialive (@ialive) posted the statement below to his personal Instagram page. Ahead of I'LL WAIT FOREVER's wide release in a couple short weeks, we've been treated to pre-album single, "Arabian Hash" featuring Day Tripper & Curly Castro of The Difference Machine and Wrecking Crew, ShrapKnel & GRIFT COMPANY, respectively. ialive's I'LL WAIT FOREVER will see a wide release on Friday, February 21, 2020. It's currently available to pre-order digitally directly from Cold Rhymes Records. I'LL WAIT FOREVER will already be Cold Rhymes' second release of 2020, as preceded by Trauma Lavern AKA P.T. Burnem & Fat Milk's recent Album Announcement FAIL EP. Next up will be a currently untitled collaborative album from Aradamus & Height Keech, which will be dropping in March 2020.


"I started sending beats to friends and loosely forming this album in my head, just as I was finishing DON'T DO NOTHING in summer of 2018. I've always been extremely inspired by Handsome Boy Modeling School's albums, as well as @djprincepaul & @dan_the_a, in general. [Dan The] Automator's curatorial skills shine so hard on the @gorillaz's first (and best) album. Another album that locked in as a kid was The [World Famous] Beat Junkies Volume 2 [with] @rhettmatic! I always loved the seamlessness and really choice tracks. This album taught me another level of patience, persistence, follow-through, and adaptability. I had to adjust with timing and content like never before. What I proudly present to you could not be a thing with out all the amazingly talented people I've [had] the honor of calling collaborators and friends. I'm happy to announce that this record will be available 2/21, via @coldrhymeslabel and you can pre-order it now. Linkin' Bio."

- Donovan ialive (@ialive)

CREDIT: Handsome Boy Modeling School, circa 2018 (@hbms_official)