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TONIGHT: TEAMWORK 2015

teamwork

 

If third time’s a charm, fourth time’s explosive. Friday August 7th, Town Ballroom will be taken by storm by Team Radio’s 4th annual Teamwork event. Teamwork 2015 is to be a memorable night of mind-blowing music in the name of raising awareness and support for Compeer of Greater Buffalo.

This year’s lineup includes second to none local and internationally acclaimed hip hop performances. Musician and filmmaker, Chae Hawk, the man behind creative record label Team Radio and the Progressive rap Cinema genre, will be performing in collaboration with X Nameless as well as some of his own music (if you’re not excited by now, hop on YouTube and check out his music video “Dirty Rich” or their collaborative single “Good Days”. These guys are good.)  For 93.7 WBLK enthusiasts, DJ Juggernaut will be dropping his own beats as well as Sirius XM Radio’s DJ Heat. The headliner of the evening is producer and EDM/ hip-hop phenomena Araabmuzik, fresh off his new record Dream World.

What makes this night more than just a ridiculously awesome showcase of talent and creativity is the cause. After raising $1,200 in 2013, Teamwork 2015 is again supporting Compeer of Greater Buffalo, a volunteer mentor program designed to help kids, adults, veterans and senior citizens succeed and find a greater sense of mental well being through mentorship with carefully picked volunteers.  This organization thrives on the power of friendship and touches lives of hundreds of Buffalo citizens. Teamwork 2015 will not only help raise awareness for this organization but also celebrate its 30th birthday.

Tickets for Teamwork 2015 may be purchased in advance online for $20 dollars. With unforgettable music for an unfathomably important cause, this event is not one to be missed.

 

Friday (8/7 @8pm-12am)

Town Ballroom 681 Main St, Buffalo (www.teamradio.net)

Tickets $20/ Ages 16+

 

~ Kellie Coppola

 


Well Kept Things EP Release

Filed under: Just Announced, Music

WKT

Photo Credit – Brett Ballachino

 

Buffalo’s pop/punk band Well Kept Things have just released their debut EP, Homegrown via Antique Records. The band puts an exclusive indie spin on conventional pop/punk music that undoubtably makes for great songs. Their anthem-like choruses and driving guitars will have you playing these songs in your car all summer long. Check out their song ‘Younger’ below and stream the entire EP on Absolutepunk.


Photo Gallery: Buddy Guy and Quinn Sullivan

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The legendary Buddy Guy and fifteen year old guitar sensation Quinn Sullivan performed this past April 22nd at the UB Center for the Arts. Photos by Cheryl Gorski.


PHOTOS by Christopher Miller: B.O.O.M. Round 3 Showdown

Filed under: Music, Photo

Check out some photos from our Round 3 Live BOOM show.

Congratulations to Luanjie for picking up the most votes. With the win, they’ll move on to the finals in June where they’ll join Round 1 winners Intent to Sell and Round 2 winner Erica Wolfling.

A big thank you to Sara Elizabeth and Wild Things for their performances at our live showdown, and of course, thank you to all the fans who came out to support original local music!

Round 4 begins this week, with our next pair of acts to be announced on Thursday. If you’re in a band and want a chance to participate in Round 4, and ultimately, a chance to win $5000 and other prizes, our submissions remain open – but time is running out, so you’ll want to sign up ASAP here!


Just Announced: Modest Mouse

Filed under: Events, Just Announced, Music

modest

 

Modest Mouse will perform in Buffalo on Friday, April 17th, inside Asbury Hall @ Babeville. The group began life as humbly as its name suggests, but after a couple of trial-and-error years, members Isaac Brock (guitar/vocals), Eric Judy (bass), and Jeremiah Green (drums) hit on the strange and compelling racket that buoyed them toward the top of the underground rock scene. On their first two albums, 1996’s This Is A Long Drive For Someone With Nothing To Think About and the 1997 breakthrough The Lonesome Crowded West, Brock’s smart, cynical lyrics sharpened fine new points on God, booze, and loneliness; fans obsessed over his words and the group’s raggedly passionate music. Fans can expect a new LP, Stranger to Ourselves to be released later this month.

Tickets for this show are available Friday at noon, March 6th and can be purchased here.

Friday (4/17)

Asbury Hall @ Babeville

341 Delaware Ave

7pm doors

$52-$55

 


Just Announced: The Get Up Kids

Filed under: Just Announced, Music

The-Get-Up-KidsAnyone who has ever posted emo lyrics in an away message has heard of the Kansas City, Missouri band, The Get Up Kids. The group were viewed throughout their existence as a prototypical emo-band, having been major players in the Midwest emo (count how many times I can mention ’emo’ in 30 seconds) movement of the mid-1990s. However, like many early emo bands, The Get Up Kids sought to dissociate themselves with the term, as it was considered dismissive to be seen as an “emo band.” Years later, guitarist Jim Suptic even apologized for having the influence they did on many of the modern third-wave emo bands, commenting that “the punk scene we came out of and the punk scene now are completely different. It’s like glam rock now . . . If this is the world we helped create, then I apologize.” Internal conflicts caused the band to break up in 2005. In 2008 they announced a 2009 reunion tour in support of the tenth anniversary re-release of their most successful album, Something to Write Home About. The band will be heading to the Studio @ Waiting Room w/ PUP and Restorations on March 25th. Tickets will go on sale starting Jan 15th.

 

 

 

 

 

 


REVIEW: A Night with Flogging Molly

Filed under: Music
Tags: , ,

mc-flogging-molly-at-sands-brings-together-the-best-of-celtic-and-punk-concert-review--20141130St. Patrick’s Day came a little early this year. The Los Angeles-based Celtic punk rockers, Flogging Molly whipped up a frenzy before a boisterous crowd last night at Rapids Theatre in Niagara Falls.

Performing for nearly two hours were FM’s Dave King on lead vocals and acoustic guitar (occasionally bodhrán, a framed drum), Dennis Casey on electric guitar, Matthew Hensley on accordion, Nathen Maxwell on bass, Bridget Regan on violin and tin whistle, Robert Schmidt on banjo and George Schwindt pounding on the drums. The group ran through more than 20 songs, a little bit of everything from their 5 studio albums.

For most of the night, the band barreled at full speed, King in constant motion-dancing jig, circling the stage or egging on the audience of 2,000 – and singing in a voice that wore his heart on his sleeve.

The crowd on the standing-room-only area of the theatre loved everything the band cranked out. In classic punk rock fashion, the songs were excuses to release aggression. From a second-floor balcony, the movement looked like continuous waves that crashed and ebbed in raging fury.

It was that way from the start, its 23-song, 100-minute show, which, with two supporting acts, crept up until midnight. Opening with the classic punk countdown (1! 2! 3! 4!) into a blast of “Screaming at The Wailing Wall,”

Fast and fearless, the band blazed through the chant-y, clapping “(No More) Paddy’s Lament” and “Every Dog Has Its Day,” King high-step jigging around as he shouted the words.

From its 2000 debut, Swagger, came a mid-show coupling “Devil’s Dance Floor” and an enthusiastic “The Likes of You Again” that had the crowd thrusting in arms.

Once Schmidt started his banjo lead in “Drunken Lullabies,” it was abundantly clear that crowd had no plans of settling down.

A cover of The Dubliners’ “The Rare Ould Times,” dedicated to singer Barney Mckenna, who died in 2012, showed Flogging Molly is every bit as good a Celtic band, starting the song with just King’s voice, acoustic guitar and Regan’s tin whistle before the band kicked in fast, then blasted in.

With “Swagger,” the crowd’s energy, already high, rose even more. It was frenzied as the main set closed with a very punk “Salty Dog” and a very liberating “What’s Left of the Flag.”

As the band left the stage the crowd immediately began to chant “OLE OLE OLE,” in anticipation for a well-deserved encore.

And then out with a furious “Seven Deadly Sins” and “If I Ever Leave This World Alive,” deeply felt and building to blast – the perfect intersection of Celtic and punk that no one plays better than Flogging Molly.

 

– Jeff Czum

 

 

 


Tonight: Peelander-Z

PeelanderPeelander-Z. What can I even say about this band? In one word…. “Incredible.” Although they’ll tell you they’re all from the Z area on the planet Peelander, the Japanese-action comic-punk band may be one of the weirdest bands you’ll ever see (I mean that in a good way). The group was Originally formed in 1998 by Peelander-Yellow, Peelander-Red, and Peelander-Blue after meeting together in New York City. With elaborate costumes that could have come off the set of a Power Rangers movie, Peelander-Z offers an experience you shouldn’t miss. Describing the style of the band is a unique endeavor because Peelander-Z is not an ordinary punk band. Sure, they have songs like “Taco Taco Taco” that fit the DIY punk rock ethos, but when Peelander-Z performs, it is as much interactive experience as it is a concert. The band, designated by their colors, utilize the crowd to the fullest in back-and-forth chants, pulling audience members onstage, jumping out into the crowd and even rolling up and playing human bowling with the band members. While maintaining an incredibly fun rapport, their music is driving and ferocious. Fan favorite songs like “S.T.E.A.K.” and “So Many Mike,” both contain insane amounts of fast tempo-energy that you could expect from legendary punk bands such as The Dead Kennedys and Minor Threat. Peelander-Z is unique, wacky and fun. Catch them and their crazy antics Tonight (12/3 @8PM) at Mohawk Place.

 

Just take the time to watch this and I think you’ll understand…. See you tonight.

-Jeff Czum


Tonight: Real Friends

real friendsA group of musicians can do a lot of things. They can tell a story, they can make us dance, or as with the group Real Friends, they can express how past romance and heartache become acceptance and closure. This Chicago five-piece has already had a big year, from their latest release, Maybe This Place Is The Same And We’re Just Changing, (Fearless Records) to a very successful run on the 2014 Vans Warped Tour where they drew some of the biggest crowds. The bands greatest asset is their poignant lyrics that evoke a sense of nostalgia. The raw emotion of singer Dan Lambton connects his audience to his lyrics. Whether heard on headphones, car stereo or a live show, Real Friends engaging hooks and high energy should quickly capture your attention. “I Don’t Love You Anymore,” “Loose Ends,” and “Cover You Up” bleed power, racing at you with scrappy guitars conveying an urgency behind every song. The songs trace the transition from youth to adulthood and whether you’re going through that transition or have already passed it, you’ll certainly appreciate what they’re saying. Real Friends will take you on that journey tonight (11/25) at the Waiting Room.

– Jeff Czum

6pm Waiting Room, 334 Delaware Ave (852-3900 / waitingroombuffalo.com) $15 advance, $17 day of show

 

 


10 Albums to Make This Winter Transition a Little Easier

In honor of our first snowfall yesterday afternoon, I’ve decided to compile a list of 10 albums to make the transition from fall to winter a little easier. Every great album has its preferred season, from the Beach Boys’ Today in the summertime, to the Kinks’ Village Green Preservation Society in the spring, and Van Morrison’s Astral Weeks during autumn. However, winter albums are a unique sort of breed. It’s hard to escape from the idea of a winter album as a haven for sad bastards. And truth be told, a lot of the albums we love most from December to March are pretty much the saddest of the them all. But some of them are austere and elegant. Some of them are gentle and fuzzy. And some of them are downright harsh and terrifying. So there’s a lot of range going on here. All in all, I hope these albums make the unbearable Buffalo winter a little easier on you, and if it’s another Polar Vortex year….well… See you in Miami.

 

 

Radio head10. RadioHead – KID A

Perhaps this is a case of reading too much into the giant, snow-capped mountains on the cover of Radiohead’s Kid A, or perhaps it’s the fact that the winter of my freshman year of high school, I listened to Kid A pretty damn regularly. Or perhaps it’s just that Kid A is so atmospheric and isolated, paranoid and eerie, there’s just no untangling it from winter at its harshest. Kid A always seemed to paint the perfect picture of pink skies illuminating through falling snowflakes. Whether  the bizarre robotic twinkles of the title track, the hypnotic awakening of mesmerizing opening song “Everything In Its Right Place,” or the weeping progression of waltzing ballad “How to Disappear Completely.” At times, playing Kid A felt as if a winter storm was always imminent, even when there wasn’t a cloud in the sky, which is saying a lot. Such is Radiohead’s uniquely chilling talent.

nick-drake-pink-moon

9. Nick Drake – Pink Moon

In his brief career, English troubadour Nick Drake never recorded anything close to a summertime album — not by a long shot. Pink Moon, stripped to the stark production of just Drake’s voice and gentle acoustic guitar, is as wintry and melancholy as they come. “Things Behind the Sun” is the sort of song that’s best heard with only the light of flickering candles. And “Know” and “Parasite” each have a somber bareness about them, as if to mirror trees stripped of their leaves. It’s an achingly beautiful album, and one that ends entirely too soon, but its soft tones and soothing sound make it a source of comfort in the most severe weather.

Bjork-Homogenic

  8. Björk – Homogenic

When Björk began her solo career after splitting with the Sugarcubes, she arrived with a vibrant and bouncy collection of club pop that started her on an experimental and artful path. But it also only hinted at the broad orchestral electronic pop sounds she would ultimately come to embrace. I’ve always associated Björk’s music with winter, but I probably need to clarify that statement a bit. It’s essentially from Homogenic on that is truly the case. With Vespertine, Biophilia and Medulla, she certainly tapped into an alluring, abstract chill. Homogenic, is the one most connected to winter in my mind, an album that finds its soul both in intimate, atmospheric spaces and in soaring pieces of mesmerizing ambition. Maybe it’s second nature to the Icelandic (see also: #6), but Björk has a particular knack for making winter soundtracks.

 

Explosions

7. Explosions in the Sky – The Earth Is Not a Cold Dead Place

I don’t know what it is, but there’s something seasonal about instrumental music: funk is for the springtime, jam bands capture summer, jazz is autumnal, and post-rock perfectly encapsulates the winter. And no post-rock album represents wintertime more than Explosions in the Sky’s acclaimed third album, The Earth Is Not a Cold Dead Place. The album’s forty-five minutes of instrumental music turn winter numbness into romance, optimism, and ecstasy – and the way this band communicate such strong emotions without using lyrics shows what incredible musicians they are, especially as the only linguistic guidance we have lies in the song titles. While it was released over ten years ago, The Earth Is Not a Cold Dead Place remains timeless, and I cannot think of a better record to more perfectly soundtrack your transition into our 5 month winter.

Sigur-Ros-Agaetis_Byrjun

  6. Sigor Rós – Agaetis Byrjun

Maybe it’s their Icelandic roots, or perhaps it’s their tendency to play slow, epic post-rock dirges strewn with reverb and bowed guitars, but Sigur Rós is practically synonymous with the coldest months of the year. Listening to the band’s breakthrough album, 2000’s Agaetis Byrjun, is akin to watching the sun rise from the edge of the world. Its lengthy tracks creep like ice floes in a polar sea, with standouts like “Sven-G-Englar” and “Ny Batteri” moving gradually, gracefully toward a mighty climax. Agaetis isn’t so much a bitter snowstorm as the lone bonfire on a desolate and frozen stretch of continent.

5. Bon Iver – For EmmaBon_Iver_-_For_Emma,_Forever_Ago

Bon Iver’s Justin Vernon spent the winter of 2007 holed up in rural Wisconsin with his guitars, some recording equipment, and a broken heart. When the snow melted, he returned with ten sparse, searching songs that gorgeously evoke the desolate beauty of those surroundings. Vernon’s voice — delicately layered and yearning — gives standouts “Skinny Love” and “Flume” their stunningly direct emotional impact, but his sturdy folk chords, earthy melodies, and plainspoken, pastoral lyrics prevent the album from descending into self-pity. Play Emma when your fire burns low. It’ll help keep you warm.

 

smashing pumpkins4Smashing Pumpkins – Pisces Iscariot

I remember driving home from Washington D.C. over some random weekend in January while listening to this album. It happened as soon as I hit Erie, Pennsylvania. I was hit with a massive snow storm and forced to pull over on the side of the highway for close to 2 hours. I reclined my seat and closed my eyes after I put this record into the 6 disc CD player of my old 2004 Ford Taurus. This collection of B-sides and demos is easily one of the Pumpkins’ most overlooked albums. It also fits in nicely with the winter theme, especially Billy Corgan’s cover of “Landslide.” Corgan is all too familiar with Chicago winters and it shows in this album. It’s loaded with angst and sadness, and speckled with hope. The Pumpkins’ Ava Adore could easily be on this list too.

3. The National – High VioletThe National

In between patches of obtuse imagery, singer Matt Berninger sounds increasingly self-destructive. The record’s upbeat numbers don’t cheer him up so much as commiserate with him. All of this makes High Violet a dark affair, even for a band with a reputation for sad-bastard melodrama. The National have never sounded triumphant, but they can still be reassuring, with Berninger’s lyrics acting as salves for our own neuroses. By March, you’ll be looking for almost any excuse to snap out of your ‘winter funk.’ We all know how it goes… We all know how it goes… Six drinks in, tired of your coworkers, wishing you could just go home and laugh at sitcoms with someone?  The National’s got your back. (Just me?….Looks like going to be a long 5 months.)

2. Death Cab For Cutie – Narrow Stairs Death Cab

Love isn’t watching someone die, contrary to what Ben Gibbard memorably sang on Death Cab for Cutie’s major-label debut. No, love is watching someone grow and change and still staying with them– whether we’re talking about family, friends, romantic interests, or a little college-town indie rock band from about an hour-and-a-half outside Seattle. Death is just the dénouement. In the three years since their platinum-selling, Grammy-nominated Plans, Gibbard and Death Cab producer/guitarist Chris Walla have both entered their thirties, coming off a wave of successes that included 2003’s Transatlanticism going gold and the debut by Gibbard side project the Postal Service becoming Sub Pop’s best-selling disc since Nirvana. That’s a whole lotta love. It goes without saying that Death Cab has a firm grip on melancholy. Just about every one of their albums makes me think of cold, dark winters – especially Narrow Stairs. But for some reason it’s a feeling of warmth in an otherwise cold place. Death Cab is interesting in that the songs can be depressing yet oddly transcending, taking you wherever you want to go. 

1. Band of Horses – Cease to Begin Band-Of-Horses-Cease-To-Begin

The first approach when picking an album for this bleak midwinter is to look for something that meets you in the snow, something with a chilliness that reflects the dystopian tundra of the world outside your window—we’ll call this the ‘Kid A’ route. (See back to #10) Of course, the other option is to pick something that warms you up—the “Find Your Beach” route, if you will. That’s where you throw on the old stuff (or the stuff that sounds old), the kind with guitars and riffs and super-obvious choruses, with harmonies that fall strictly into major keys. These two roads diverged in a winter-album wood and made things difficult, but I found an album that does both: Band of Horses’ Cease to Begin is a cup of iced liquor, hitting your mouth in a freezing burst, but giving your cheeks a flush just the same. Being one of the more boilerplate semi-southern-rock bands of mid-2000s indie lore (which is not an insult), a summery sound could reasonably be expected from Ben Bridwell’s crew, and it was there to an extent on Band of Horses’ debut, Everything All the Time. But whether they planned a specific departure or I’m just a slave to subconscious associations with the album’s artwork, Cease to Begin wields a guitar-tone and produced sheen that’s the aural equivalent of cold steel on bare skin. Cease to Begin has been called soft, so maybe I’ve spent too much time trying to mount a defense. Probably, the real message should’ve just been this: Lay back and drink that.

~Jeff Czum




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