Known for their indie rock scuzz-meets-growling guitar grunge, California X has announced their highly anticipated sophomore album Nights in the Dark. The follow up to their critically acclaimed eponymous debut, the new album will be released January 13, 2015 via Don Giovanni Records. Justin Pizzoferrato (Dinosaur Jr, Speedy Ortiz) once again helms the engineering deck, ensuring the new record retains all the distorted overdrive of the band’s characteristic fuzzed out, hard guitar-driven sound.
Drawing on influences from 70s rock to 90s alternative, Nights in the Dark not only stimulates the senses but it allowed the quartet to delve deeper into more conceptual work, the contrast between light and dark, contentment and longing. Title track “Nights In The Dark” bursts the record open with power pop hooks and euphoric guitar. “Nights in the Dark” premiered with VICE’s Noisey and is available HERE to post and share!
Heavy on distorted guitar hooks and rhythms, Nights in the Dark finds the quartet exploring both mood and texture. “Red Planet” is a slow burning jam, gradually introducing percussion rolling into a wailing guitar peak, eventually leaving the embers burning out. The gravitated jam that opens “Blackrazor (pt. 1)” builds to addictive vocal harmonies and then to the manic power of “Blackrazor (pt. 2)”, followed by the gentle tapping build of instrumental cut “Garlic Road,” punctuated by spare piano chords.
Formed by friends Lemmy Gurtowsky and Dan Jones upon relocating to Amherst, MA, California X have crafted a more mature sophomore record, that find solace in a heavy, lush and melodic home with the addition of Zach Brower on guitar and Cole Lanier on drums. An introspective vision is confronted as the band maneuvers, seamlessly as ever, from fuzzy power chords to conceptual ballads.
Butch Walker has announced his highly anticipated seventh full-length album Afraid Of Ghosts, out February 3 via Dangerbird Records. With his remarkably diverse resume that includes everything from guitar god to GRAMMY and CMA nominated producer, Walker's new LP shows both skill and tenderness. The production was helmed by Ryan Adams at his PAX AM Studios in LA along with friends & special guests Johnny Depp and Bob Mould. With gritty hints of folk, pop and rock, Afraid Of Ghosts weaves a journey through life, love, death and everything in between.
The album opens with title track “Afraid of Ghosts” which finds Walker attempting to come to terms with his demons over spare acoustic guitar notes and accordion chords, while the gentle doo-wop of “How Are Things Love” brings both the artist and the listener back in time. “Bed On Fire” takes things back up a notch as haunting strings and electric guitar build to a chill-inducing distorted crescendo.
First album single “Chrissie Hynde” wistfully recounts the legendary Pretenders frontwoman’s voice coming through the speakers, over a combination of acoustic and electric guitar, piano and a solitary drumbeat, captivating as always with Walker’s effortlessly unique vocals. The track is available to post and share HERE, and on iTunes as an instant-grat MP3 w/ Afraid Of Ghosts pre-order now!
Throughout his career, Butch Walker has always inspired with his infectious yet never over-bearing sense of melody. He joins his friend Ryan Adams on the road this fall for a nationwide tour. Together he & Adams will be one thing: undeniable.
Kate Pierson - iconic voice and founding member of the B52s, punk, new wave, genre-defying band has announced her debut solo record Guitars and Microphones, released February 17 via Lazy Meadow Music/Kobalt Label Services. Produced by Tim Anderson (Ima Robot) and featuring Nick Valensi of The Strokes on several tracks, Kate collaborated on songwriting with Siawho also executive produced the album.
Album opener “Throw Down the Roses” is an empowering humanist anthem, maintaining that one can embrace the world, radiate positivity and still kick butt when necessary. Upbeat title track, “Guitars and Microphones” plays upon a galactic pop groove. The lush “Bring Your Arms” is an immediately infectious synth-pop jam with a move to the groove environmental theme. Kate’s soaring emotive vocals on “Mister Sister“ is a poetic love letter of the power of transformation - - welcoming the freedom to live (and dance) and daring to transcend gender boundaries. “Mister Sister” is available on iTunes as an instant-grat MP3 w/ Guitars and Microphones pre-order now!
On the cusp of celebrating 10 years as a band, Screaming Females announces Rose Mountain, the New Jersey DIY-punk trio’s sixth LP due February 24 on Don Giovanni Records. The band self-produced their previous releases (with Steve Albini engineering their 2012 LP Ugly and the 2014 concert album Live at the Hideout) but overturned the long-standing, self-imposed rule this time by bringing in Matt Bayles (Mastodon, the Sword) as a producer. Setting out with a vision so clear that it almost became a studio mantra, the resulting songs are concise, crisp and melodic, in essence creating at once their most complex and accessible record to date.
Upon listening to the blazing guitar and ecstatic percussion on Rose Mountain, the word “restraint” may not initially come to mind. And while melody has always been a central part of the band’s music, the musicians have often layered them into massive thickets of interlocking sound on previous albums. However, on Rose Mountain the band was ready to try something more streamlined with Paternoster’s vocal melodies and lyrical themes being pushed into the forefront, while never skimping on the raw intensity they have become known for.
Taut album opener “Empty Head” leads with a powerful guitar line that will leave fans enraptured on contact. Lovesick ballad “Hopeless” builds to a lush emotive climax while album closer “Criminal Image” takes on a more powerful stance with ecstatic guitar-driven peaks broken up by moments of melancholy. The infectious bass line and powerful arpeggiated guitar line set the stage for sweetly growling vocals on “Ripe”. "Ripe" was revealed with Pitchfork today and is available to post and share HERE.
Formed in 2005, Screaming Females is singer/guitarist Marisa Paternoster, bassist Michael Abbate and drummer Jarrett Dougherty. The band has performed alongside Dinosaur Jr., The Julie Ruin, Titus Andronicus + more and just wrapped up a national tour with PUJOL. Stay tuned for more info and opportunities to experience the band’s ferocity live on stage.
Big Freedia is thrilled to announce a new contest for her FREE Twerk App, currently on Android, and coming to iPhone. Lucky fans, handpicked by the Queen of Bounce, herself, will be featured in the promotional video for the new app, along with exclusive prize packs. Fans looking to enter will need to submit their videos via Facebook or Twitter, using the hashtag #BigFreediaTwerk by January 5th. Winners will be announced the week of January 12th. Twerk App is brought to you by BitCandy.com, home for new indie music.
As the first openly gay rapper to gain mainstream success, Big Freedia is the undisputed Queen of Bounce. Born and raised in New Orleans, she has her own hit TV show on FUSE TV, an ever-growing fanbase who pack clubs and fervent Facebook and Twitter follows. BitCandy
Last fall, she helped set the Guinness World Record for the most people twerking simultaneously. “Twerking is definitely from New Orleans,” Freedia says. “We’ve been twerking for a long time and shaking our asses, but it’s a universal thing… It’s one dance move, but everyone has their own twist on it. Everyone has a different feeling of how they twerk.”
Los Angeles based five-piece Irontom have been making waves in their hometown for years and are now ready to make their mark nationwide. Their newest single “Feel Good” premiered on Guitar World and is an imaginative cover of the Gorillaz hit track “Feel Good Inc.” With crushing guitar, stirring vocals, and an inventive reimagining of the rap break, this cover is one worth noting.
“Feel Good” marks the second song in the band’s trio of new singles, all produced by Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Jack Irons of the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Pearl Jam. Besides being one of the most recognized names in rock music, Jack Irons is also the father of Irontom’s lead guitarist Zach Irons. For the two of them, working together in music wasn’t something planned, but rather it just happened. Zach says, “My dad and I have been playing together since I was a young kid. It makes perfect sense for us to collaborate. Musically, we have a perfect understanding of each other.”
Together with his fellow band members, Harry Hayes on lead vocals, Dane Sandborg on bass, Dan Saslow on keys, and Dyl Williams on drums, Zach was able to use his house as a recording studio, giving Irontom complete creative control over their music.
Irontom’s music isn’t music that you dispassionately slip into your back pocket for a convenient conversation piece. You wear it on your sleeve. Not every band is willing to go to war with the white noise blasphemy that sprays out of the radio. It’s easier to blend in. That’s not what Irontom does.
Their first music video for “The Minista” premiered on Rolling Stone. Featuring Charlie Sheen in a cameo and David LeRoy Anderson’s (Men In Black, Star Trek Into Darkness, The Nutty Professor) amazing make-up work, the video is a treat for both the eyes and ears.
This band is homegrown, organic and eloquent in its vision. They don’t plan on waiting around for a big break. Irons says, “We will do whatever it takes to get our music to as many people as we can, on our terms.”
With accolades ranging from FADER to Resident Advisor and beyond, global Melbourne ambassadors Cut Copy recently released Cut Copy presents: Oceans Apart via the band’s own dance imprint, Cutters Records. A 19-track continuous DJ-mixed snapshot of new & exclusive music from their hometown’s thriving underground dance music scene & club culture, Cut Copy presents: Oceans Apart was mixed by the band themselves and is also available as two vinyl EPs of compilation highlights.
Both a local scene document, which is increasingly rare in this global age, and a bumping 80-minute non-stop dance party, Cut Copy presents: Oceans Apart is the product of the band’s observations of its hometown, where it became undeniably apparent that this fertile community was mushrooming. It threads together a cross-section of the different party crews, label rosters & ambitious lone rangers that have been catalysts in making Melbourne vibrant & happening week in, week out- all in the format of a continuous dance mix, which is what the music was made for.
Cut Copy presents: Oceans Apart is streaming in full HERE and the band released a 12-minute documentary directed by Thomas Pollard, serving as a visual supplement to the compilation.