The 2014 Rock ‘n’ Roll Rumble Dates and Lineup Announced

The dates and nightly lineup for the 2014 Rock ‘n’ Roll Rumble have been announced and it looks like another good year for the Rumble. I’m going to try and get out to at least a few of the nights, since I have a couple of favorites playing (but I’ll keep that info to myself). Good luck to all of the bands playing this year!

The whole thing goes down at TT the Bear’s in Cambridge and tickets are on sale now.

The 2014 lineup:

Night 1 – Sunday, April 6 Facebook event page

7:00pm – Opening night reception
9:00 – Rebuilder
9:45 – tigerman WOAH!
10:30 – Sinnet
11:15 – Guillermo Sexo

Night 2 – Monday, April 7 Facebook event page

9:00 – Doom Lover
9:45 – When Particles Collide
10:30 – Goddamn Draculas
11:15 – Emma Ate The Lion

Night 3 – Tuesday, April 8 Facebook event page

9:00 – Barricades
9:45 – Airport
10:30 – Z*L
11:15 – The Life Electric

Off Wednesday for rest.

Night 4 – Thursday, April 10 Facebook event page

9:30 – Butterknife
10:15 – Slowdim
11:00 – Gondoliers
11:45 – Western Education

Night 5 – Friday, April 11 Facebook event page

9:30 – FEINTS
10:15 – Petty Morals
11:00 – Summoner
11:45 – Vary Lumar

Night 6 – Saturday, April 12 Facebook event page

9:30 – Harris Hawk
10:15 – Await Rescue
11:00 – The Color and Sound
11:45 – Yellabird

The 2014 Boston Calling Festival Lineup Announced

The 2014 Boston Calling lineup was released tonight through a scavenger hunt to find 10 vinyl records hidden around Boston, which sounded like a really fun idea. I was really hoping to go this year, since other commitments kept me from attending both the spring and fall 2013 festivals. Perhaps it’s because I’m not an annoying 20-something, blonde, female, college student (an observation based on an unscientific perusal of Twitter reactions to the announcement), but this lineup is pretty meh. I mean really…Jack Johnson?

Maybe there’s just not enough diversity for me and really, the only must see band playing is Warpaint. Regardless of my thoughts about the lineup, it will most likely sell out and this really is the closest thing Boston has to a big music festival.

Boston Calling once again takes place downtown in City Hall Plaza from May 23-25 and tickets can be purchased here soon.

The 2014 Spring Boston Calling Lineup:

Jack Johnson
Death Cab for Cutie
Modest Mouse
Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros
Brand New
The Head and the Heart
Tegan and Sara
Bastille
Jenny Lewis
Frank Turner and the Sleeping Souls
The Neighborhood
Phosphorescent
Built to Spill
Kurt Vile
Walk Off The Earth
Warpaint
Cass McCombs
The Districts
Tigerman Woah!
Magic Man

Review: Krill, Porches, Summer People, Pile at TT the Bear’s 11-22-2013

Sign

I got a bit of a late start on this night, despite trying like hell to get over to Central Square for what was to be a pretty great lineup of bands. After leaving work later than planned and a much needed power nap, I made my way to Alewife and took the T to Central Square on this unusually warm November night.

Jamaica Plain’s Krill, were already playing to a much larger crowd than I expected by the time I got to TT the Bear’s. I only caught their last two songs, which I was really liking and made me wish I had gotten there earlier. After Krill were done, I decided to try a Wolaver’s Pumpkin ale, which was kind of disappointing.

Porches 5

Porches 4

Porches 3

Porches 1

Porches

Up next were New York’s Porches, who I have read a lot about and was happy to finally have a chance to see. The band sounded a bit of a different live than on their recorded stuff. Lead singer Aaron Maine’s raspy, emotional voice seemed to give the songs a little something extra live. This wasn’t a bad thing at all and I was really liking them a lot. I’m guessing that about half the crowd were there for Porches, since a decent amount of people left after their set.

It was time for another beer and I ended up with a Sam Adams Octoberfest, which despite wearing a good portion of it as I made my way back to the stage area, tasted a lot better than the first beer.

Summer People 5

Summer People 1

Summer People 4

Summer People

Summer People, who are also from New York, went on next. Going right into the first song, singer Alex Craver played a tambourine furiously for nearly the whole set, which I’m sure left some bruises on him. At one point he jumped down into the crowd, which went crazy and were loving it. It was a pretty energetic set of rock with a little bit of a blues sound.

Pile 5

Pile 2

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Pile 1

Pile

This was my 3rd time seeing Pile, a band I like more every time I’ve seen them. Pile played a pretty rocking set that got some of the crowd moshing and at one point, someone ran up and attempted a stage dive, which is funny because the stage at TT’s is pretty low. Their set felt way shorter than it actually was, but I guess that’s not a bad thing, because I was really into it.

It was a fun night of great music. My only regret is that I missed Krill’s set. I went over to get a Porches CD and ended up briefly chatting with someone at the merch table who was extremely apologetic for not having them. I assured him that I would get it from their Bandcamp, so it’s all good. I ended the night with some much needed food from Falafel Palace, which wasn’t as good as it usually is, but it did the job.

Here’s a bonus video of Summer People doing “Good Stuff“:

Review: My Bloody Valentine at the House of Blues Boston 11-07-2013

After giving some serious thought to flying to London back in March for My Bloody Valentine’s 2 shows at Hammersmith Apollo, I was surprised to hear that they were going to do a small US tour and actually shocked that Boston was one of the stops on this tour. The only downside was that it was taking place at the House of Blues, a venue I personally boycott due to the ridiculous security which takes away from any enjoyment of actually seeing a show there. I managed to put that aside on this night (to be fair, it wasn’t as bad this time, but when one of the people with us wanted to lean against the rail because her foot hurt and security yelled at her, I remembered why I hate this venue).

I left early enough, but got stuck on the green line where we sat in a holding pattern for 15 minutes, which in turn caused me to miss the opening band, Dumb Numbers. The consensus via text messages from my friends who were already there, was that I didn’t miss much. I arrived at the House of Blues and immediately got a Harpoon UFO White, then tried to find my friends amongst the large crowd. Once I found them, we caught up a bit and waited patiently for the band to go on.

My Bloody Valentine 2

My Bloody Valentine 3

My Bloody Valentine 5

My Bloody Valentine 6

My Bloody Valentine

As Kevin Shields and the rest of the band walked on stage, the sold out crowd erupted with cheers and applause. Kicking things off with “Sometimes” and going into “I Only Said“, the band sounded amazing. It seemed as if Shields switched guitars for every song, including acoustic guitars amongst the many electric ones. He pretty much stayed on his side of the stage, flanked by a tower of speakers that he seemed to be playing to at times. Songs like “Only Shallow” and “To Here Knows When” sounded incredible live, although bassist Bilinda Butcher’s vocals were kind of hard to hear over all of the other sounds going on. When they went into “Wonder 2“, from the mbv album released earlier this year, it felt as if there really was a jet engine running in the building.

My Bloody Valentine 10

My Bloody Valentine 12

My Bloody Valentine 13

My Bloody Valentine 14

My Bloody Valentine 15

My Bloody Valentine

They ended the night with “You Made Me Realize” and it’s famed middle section that consists purely of sonic noise, which is also known as the “holocaust”. I took out my earplugs briefly which gave it an entirely different sound, as in you could almost make out the guitars as opposed to just hearing noise and yeah, it was LOUD! I was excited to finally experience this in person and I’m not really sure how long it lasted, but we guessed that it was somewhere around 8 minutes.

After playing for what was probably the fastest hour and a half of my life, the band was done and walked off stage to an extremely appreciative audience. All of the conversations I overheard agreed with my thoughts of this being an amazing show, and perhaps show of the year. It really was more of an experience rather than just another concert. I’m still seeing the swirling visuals that were projected behind the band in my head. I don’t know if it was just me or what, but I expected this to be a much louder show than it actually was, which is not to say that you should go without earplugs, because it was still tinitus inducing loud.

My Bloody Valentine 16

My Bloody Valentine

The only bummer of the night was that I didn’t pick up a long desired mbv shirt because I didn’t realize there was a merch table and only found out about after I met up with friends outside. Now, if only someone could get a Ride reunion to happen!

Review: Doze, Boogie Boy Metal Mouth, Marconi, Guillermo Sexo at the Middle East Upstairs 9-29-2013

With it being a Sunday, the Patriots playing, and the finale of Breaking Bad, this was a rough night for any band to have a show in the Boston area. I arrived at the Middle East Upstairs, where there was much less of a crowd than I expected. I grabbed a Sam Adams Octoberfest , then took a spot in front of the stage and waiting for Boogie Boy Metal Mouth to go on. Unfortunately, I had missed the opening band Doze.

Boogie Boy Metal Mouth 1

Boogie Boy Metal Mouth 3

Boogie Boy Metal Mouth 2

Boogie Boy Metal Mouth

A coworker, who I also ran into at the show, had told me about Boogie Boy Metal Mouth a few months ago. This duo consists of J. Ring who does the rapping and Emoh Betta who took care of the scratching and beats. Using rock, metal, and blues backing tracks with heavy bass, distortion, and reverb, it was a pretty interesting sound and worked really well. Never really standing still and even jumping off the stage into the crowd at times, you could tell these guys were into it. The set ended a little more quietly with rapping over a blues rock track.

I went to bar to get another beer, this giving the Harpoon Munich Dark a try. It was smooth and went down nicely..a good choice.

Marconi 5

Marconi 4

Marconi 1

Marconi

Marconi were up next and this was their last show ever. To be honest, I had never heard of them, but they played pretty low key indie rock and I was really getting into it. The band seemed to be enjoying themselves on stage by cracking jokes. I kind of wish I known about them sooner because they were really good.

Guillermo Sexo 4

Guillermo Sexo 3

Guillermo Sexo 2

Guillermo Sexo 1

Guillermo Sexo

This was a record release for the night’s headliners, Guillermo Sexo. Playing songs from their new album “Dark Spring“, including “Meow Metal“, “Dark Spring“, and ending with the nearly 8 minute long “Coyote“, the new tracks sounded great live! The band seemed to go off into some indie rock jams at times and it was great!

All in all, it was definitely worth missing Breaking Bad (which was on when I got home) to see a bunch of really good local music. I picked up Guillermo Sexo’s new album “Dark Spring” which is excellent and a t-shirt because, hey why not?

Review: Sleep Studies, Ghost Modern, Heliotropes, Japanese Monster at TT the Bears 9-06-2013

Sign

Although I was a little out of it after a full day of work and getting very little sleep the night before, I forced myself to go out on this slightly chilly September night, because this seemed like it was going to be an awesome show. A quick ride on the red line and I arrived at TT the Bear’s in Central Square.

Sleep Studies 1

Sleep Studies 2

Sleep Studies

Sleep Studies were already on and playing to a decent sized crowd. I only caught the last couple of songs, but the band seemed to have dream pop/shoegaze sound and were pretty good. I was kind of bummed to have missed the majority of their set, but will definitely see them again at Deep Heaven Now 8 in October in Somerville.

At this point, I decided to get a drink and ordered the UFO seasonal, but have no idea which one it was (definitely not pumpkin). It was ok, not anything special though. I made my way near the front of the stage to catch Ghost Modern, who were setting up.

Ghost Modern 1

Ghost Modern 5

Ghost Modern 4

Ghost Modern 3

Ghost Modern 2

Ghost Modern

Ghost Modern are a new local band that features ex-members of the excellent Autochrome and Squall. Trading off on boy/girl vocals, with the male vocal being deep and dark and the female vocal counteracting that with a lighter sound, it all came together very well. They are also playing Deep Heaven Now 8, so I’ll get to see them again too.

Heliotropes 1

Heliotropes 6

Heliotropes 5

Heliotropes 4

Heliotropes 3

Heliotropes 2

Heliotropes

Brooklyn based Heliotropes, just killed it during their set. Their sound can probably best be described as fuzz rock with harmonies. Guitarist and singer Jessica Numsuwankijkul went into several guitar solos and seemed to play off of Amber Myers tambourine and backing vocals. These 4 ladies really seemed to be having fun and it showed. I may have developed a little crush on this band and can’t wait for them to come back to the area. I wanted to buy a physical copy of their CD (their label, Manimal Vinyl doesn’t seem to have one listed on their website), but will end up buying it on iTunes, because this band is that good!

Japanese Monster 1

Japanese Monster 5

Japanese Monster 4

Japanese Monster 3

Japanese Monster 2

Japanese Monster

Most of the crowd had cleared out by the time the final band of the night, Japanese Monster went on. They had set up a couple of synthesizers on the stage, but I wasn’t sure what to expect as I haven’t heard any of their music before. Those that left missed out on some really good post punk, slightly dance music and the band was appreciative of those of us that did stay. The visuals being projected onto the band helped enhanced the mood as well. I saw them do about 6 songs before having to leave to catch the train back to my car.

Despite being really tired, I had a pretty good time and enjoyed every band at this show. I would highly recommend seeing any of these bands, as well as seeking out their music. I ended the night with an attempt to get some food at Falafel Palace, but the line was literally out the door and I would have missed the last train. I decided to hit up a McDonalds on my way home, where a very terse little old lady was working the counter and very unintentionally awesomely hilarious!

My Bloody Valentine Announce a Mini Tour of North America!

mbv cover

In what is probably the best news of 2013 and perhaps the decade, My Bloody Valentine have announced an eight date mini tour of North America, which begins in November and includes Boston!

I’m totally conflicted on the Boston date since it’s at the House of Blues, a place I have a love/hate relationship with, due to the airport-like security which takes away from any enjoyment of going there. Perhaps a roadtrip to NYC for the 2 shows at Hammerstein Ballroom would be more fun instead…who wants to go*?

* I’m still going to the Boston show, I mean, it will be epic! But I’m serious about a NYC road trip too!

My Bloody Valentine 2013 tour dates:

Nov. 1: Roy Wilkins Auditorium, St. Paul, MN
Nov. 3: Aragon Ballroom, Chicago, IL
Nov. 5: The Kool Haus, Toronto, Canada
Nov. 6: Metropolis, Montreal, Canada
Nov. 7: House of Blues: Boston, Boston, MA
Nov. 9: Electric Factory, Philadelphia, PA
Nov. 11: Hammerstein Ballroom, New York City, NY
Nov. 12: Hammerstein Ballroom, New York City, NY


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