Tuesday, July 27, 2010

My Interview with The Devil Wears Prada

While i was at the Sonshine Festival in Minnesota with my pal Alan i got to meet up with fellow Indie Vision Music write (and my mentor!) Steve Sloan. He was able to set up an interview with one of the hottest bands right now; The Devil Wears Prada. Alan videotaped while Steve and I grilled Mike (lead singer) and Jeremy (lead guitar/backup vocals) about their current Back To The Roots tour and other topics. It was a lot of fun and i'm very thankful to Steve for setting this up, he's been an awesome friend and contact since we met only a few months ago.

Here's the interview:

The Devil Wears Prada Interview at Sonshine 2010 from Indie Vision Music on Vimeo.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Show Recap: Gwen Stacy @ Cervantes

I was planning on hitting up this show on my own since none of my friends out here in Denver are big Gwen Stacy fans, and the rest of the lineup was pretty weak, but fortunately for me my buddy Jordan tagged along. For $15 you couldn't really go wrong, but this show attempted to be a waste of money, one of the few times when i feel let down but a live concert.

I've been a Gwen Stacy fan for quite a while, they have hardcore roots and don't really venture too much into metalcore which is nice. They have some awesome breakdowns with great sing alongs like "This is family, this is pure!" and i haven't had the chance to catch them outside of last year's Scream the Prayer Tour where they weren't playing anything from their latest release A Dialogue. I was pretty excited to finally catch them, and the fact that they were headlining was surprising to me since they didn't have that big of support last summer when i saw them at Sonshine and STP Tour.

Well, they still don't have great support and probably shouldn't have done a headlining tour, the venue was practically empty, easily less than 100 people. The front of the stage was maybe 2 people deep in the middle, and only about 10 kids were really dancing around. We stood near the back for previous bands but we knew that Gwen Stacy would call people out so we moved close to the stage. Sure enough Geoff, lead singer for GS, did call out two girls that were sitting up in the balcony and we spent easily 5 minutes coaxing them down to the stage. Surprisingly Geoff was using a plethora of foul language on the mic was threw me for a total loop.

Normally foul language at a show is nothing new, and i don't have a problem with it at all, but bands that represent themselves as a "Christian Band" and represent a known Christian label like Solid State Records, swearing on the mic seems a bit poor in taste. I was starting to wonder if the band no longer considered themselves to be representing Christ through their platform and after the show i was able to find out that in fact the band no longer considered themselves a "christian band" and that Brent, bass player and the founder of the band, was really the only Christian left. this was disheartening to say the least, but it is what it is.

After instructing the crowd to get "A#% to balls" and pack it in, all 40 of us enjoyed a set that opened with "The Path to Certainty" and then rolled through "The Fear in Your Eyes" and "I Was Born With Two First Names". They also played crowd favorite "Gun Held to the Head" from there initial demo. I believe they only played two tracks from their latest release A Dialogue which were "Profit Motive" and "The First Words" my favorite track. They closed with "Gone Fishing" i think.

The new band was solid, the new drummer Brett Sibley did well and adding the 2nd guitarist (Matt Strahl) really help the overall sound even if he was deathly ill. Frontman Geoff is solid, but he seemed a little off tonite, possibly due to some alcohol consumption before the show? who knows, either way he's pretty good considering there weren't many kids at the show, and he spoke about people using their heads to make decisions, and that the band is about "mutual respect" saying "when you die you're only accountable for yourself."

The other 2 bands we saw were City Serene and Lower Definition. City Serene is a female fronted mini-Attack Attack! with some electronic synth mixed in. they were pretty weak in my opinion, and once again i'm not impressed with female-fronted hardcore bands, i just don't buy it. Lower Definition has a solid sound and plenty of energy, but the lead singer totally ruined it for me. maybe it was the fact that he "drank three bottles of whiskey before the show" and was "totally faded" but he was just stumbling around and kept pulling the mic away from his face when he was singing the clean vocals like he was Justin Timberlake or something. never could hear him at all.

Just a bummer of a show. check out this picture and see how there was no crowd:

Friday, July 23, 2010

Gwen Stacy band no longer a "Christian band"

Gwen Stacy has apparently dropped their label of “Christian Band” after manys years on Solid State Records and tours including the Scream The Prayer Tour with stops at Cornerstone and Sonshine. The band is currently touring on the No Bummer Summer Tour with Lower Definition and all the members are very accessible through twitter and formspring. They are also featuring a new lineup replacing their longtime drummer TJ Sego and added a second guitarist.

Geoff Jenkins: “we aren’t a christian band anymore. People can never focus on anything but the label” -twitter

Geoff Jenkins (lead vocals) Formspring Twitter

Brent Schindler: “I am still a Christian. GS not being a Christian band has nothing to so with my personal faith.” -twitter

Brent (bass, clean vox): Twitter

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Best of 2010 (so far)

Here we are in July and there have already been some amazing releases! I figured i would list my favorite albums so far for 2010, and some other stuff as well

10. Dependency - Convicted

The debut release from this hardcore band, it's short (EP) and sweet, raw energy and passion. Favorite tracks are Ready For Conflict and Fragile.

9. Norma Jean - Meridional

This one has yet to be released as i write this, but i got an early copy so i could write a review for IVM. I'm not the biggest Norma Jean fan but this album is really good, some songs are chaotic and heavy, while others feature some melody to sing along with. my favorite Norma Jean release. Favorite tracks are Septentrional and High Noise Low Output.

8. Close Your Eyes - We Will Overcome

This one took me a minute to get into after i checked them out based on a "Sounds like Comeback Kid". they don't sound like CBK in my opinion, but it's still impressive melodic Christian hardcore. Check out 17:20 and Song For The Broken.

7. Blank Page Empire - Sinners, Thieves, and Beggars

This progressive-rock band from Minnesota blew me away with this record, their unsigned debut. Excellent vocals and a very dynamic sound makes this a fresh release for 2010. check out tracks The Blind That Lead the Blind and The Amazing Two-Headed Man.

6. As I Lay Dying - The Powerless Rise

This will end up being Album of the Year for a lot of people, and it is an impressive album. The music (metal/metalcore) on this album is probably their best effort to date, but i felt the lyrics were a little weak in relative to previous releases. Despite that its still an awesome album, i liked tracks The Plague and The Anodyne Sea.

5. Hundredth - When Will We Surrender

I held off checking these guys out because i didn't really like the name of the band, but after Jordan told me to take a listen i was impressed. Solid hardcore and great elements to each song that make the songs more memorable and dynamic than other hardcore bands.

4. The Ghost Inside - Returners

Oh man, i love this band, never heard of them before the 10 for $10 Tour last year and after that performance i was sold. I was just getting into their previous release when they dropped Returners, and man it's all good! Love the tracks Unspoken and The Conflict (w/ Tommy Green of Sleeping Giant).

3. Dave Barnes - What We Want We Get

Probably Dave's most accessible work yet, all of the songs are radio-friendly yet still feature the great songwriter vibe that Dave is known for. Someday people will discover Dave Barnes and be ticked that they hadn't discovered him earlier! Listen to Chameleon and God Gave Me You.

2. Robbie Seay Band - Miracle

Every album from Robbie Seay is excellent, his raspy vocals and so good and the laid-back vibe of his band is great to listen to. Miracles is solid front to back with worship tracks that you probably won't find in church on Sunday mornings, but you will be singing them everywhere else. great tracks are Crazy Love and Lament.

1. Haste the Day - Attack of the Wolf King

this will probably end up as my favorite album by HTD (so far). This album is full of energetic metalcore with great choruses, something Haste the Day have been doing well for quite a while now. This is my album of the year so far, i love it! Favorite tracks so far are Dogs Like Vultures and The Quiet Deadly Ticking.

Other Notable Releases:

Call to Preserve - Life of Defiance
War of Ages - Eternal
Continuance - Carry Ourselves
Of Mice & Men - s/t

Top Artist Plays in last 6 months:

Top Tracks Plays in last 6 months: