WAND. Killer 3-piece band from LA/San Francisco are at the Empty Bottle tonight with Perfume & Melkbelly! This is not a show to miss. In August of 2014 we heard their debut release “Ganglion Reef” off of Ty Segall’s God? Records. Since then they have already put out another album and LP. Their sophomore album, “Golem” (this time on In The Red), is a true garage rock rager with the rawest of tones and synthetic explosions popping through the seams. Soon after on Sept. 25th of 2015, they release another work of art (this time on Drag City) called 1000 Days. Watch them tear up the stage tonight at the Empty Bottle in Chicago!
Two weeks after putting out their music video for “Drag”, Long Live The GOAT releases “A Greeting From The Dark King”. The songs and artwork are brutal! The EP was recorded and mixed at Chicago’s Treehouse Records and mastered at Macca Mastering. Both songs can now be downloaded off their bandcamp page for whatever you want to pay for them. Take them for free or give them your life savings. I think I saw them drinking Skol last week, so I’m sure they’d appreciate the latter. You can see them live at Moe’s Tavern in Chicago tonight with City Slang and The Evictions. RSVP for the show HERE!
When my buddy asked me to come check out the Peelander-Z show at Reggie’s on Halloween, I was a little hesitant. I thought we’d be going to see some Japanese Teletubby bullshit and it’d be a lame waste of a Halloween. Wow was I wrong… I’ve never seen a show like this. Peelander-Z spends more time involving the crowd in their show than actually playing music and it makes for one hell of a time! My friends and I found our selves on stage multiple times during the show whether it was to stage dive back into the audience, do aerobics, or literally play the band’s instruments. I even stepped out of the venue in the middle of the show to get a breather and saw “Yellow”, the guitarist/front man of Peelander-Z, run out behind me to yank an umbrella out of a table and run right back in. This show was an exciting way to spend Halloween and I highly encourage anyone that likes to go ape shit at a show to check them out when they come through your town.
The openers were also a pleasant surprise. The Symptoms, a heavy dance punk outlet consisting of a drummer and dual bassists, kicked off the show. Their disco punk drum grooves and raunchy tones of bass being played like a guitar reminded me of Death from Above 1979 in the best possible way. I’d love to see more of these guys, but rumor has it that that was the last show for their drummer, so I guess we’ll have to wait and see what’s next for The Symptoms. Mad Conductor, a progressive rap rock group from Center Valley, PA, was the other opener for the night. Personally, they just weren’t for me. They somehow brought me to your average basic bitch dorm room where a Sublime poster was somewhere amidst and I wouldn’t be surprised if EDM was the true forte of their fan base. Although they weren’t necessarily for me, I’d be a fool to deny Mad Conductor’s talent. The band was tight like a virgin butt hole and could get a crowd moving. They also bring in some hot fans. That’s a rarity at a punk show.
Beer & food of the night: 3 Floyds Blackheart – (8.5 ABV) So smooth, yet so punishing. Reggie’s fried pickle spears – I love me some fried pickles, but when they’re spears they’re bigger, so of course they’re better.
Whores. Now this is some brutal shit. Even their name is badass. Whores are Christian Lembach (voice and guitar), Casey Maxwell (bass), and Donnie Adkinson (drums). They are three dudes from Atlanta, Georgia that play some neo-monolithic noise rock. I had the pleasure of seeing them tear it up at The Subterranean in Wicker Park a few weeks ago when they shared a bill with Wild Throne and opened up for Red Fang. This was a wild show that was a tight squeeze for The SubT! The pit was made up of pissed off drunken grown men with a deep love for metal and was not a force to be messed with. The slimey beer soaked floor was littered with broken belongings by the end of the night and I wouldn’t be surprised if some blood was spilt. If you didn’t get a chance to experience the good times and bad vibes for yourself while they were on tour, listen to their latest EP, “Clean”, right here on We Are The Television via Bandcamp!
LONG LIVE THE GOAT premieres their debut music video for “Drag” off their upcoming debut EP, “The Dark King”, here on We Are The Television! Dudes… you party? I party. If this is what an average practice looks like for LLTG then they are probably not going to last for very long. I hope that’s not the case because this is raging!
FUZZ is back with just what we need! It’s been a while since their first self-titled album in 2013. Their second album, “II”, comes out this Friday, October 23rd and it’s one hell of a heavy hitting head-banging metal album that already has a classic sound to it. Feel free to call it whatever list of post lo-fi psychedelic garage punk rock n’ roll over-the-top mix of genres works for you, but I’d say this is a perfect stab at the original metal sound. Fuzz II strips it down to the very essentials – epic riffs, catchy licks, and a beat that kills. Why make it more pretentious than it is? It’s fucking awesome and makes me want to slam a beer a punch a hole in the wall. Your Dad is probably going to pop in to your room at some point when you crank this album and ask you if you’re getting back into Black Sabbath. As lame as your Dad is, he’s kind of right. Garage rockers Ty Segall, Charlie Moothart (of the Moonhearts), and Chad Ubovich (of Meatbodies) have put together an equally powerful and menacingly catchy album with Fuzz II that can be seen as a gateway album to some much heavier stuff for fans of Fuzz and maybe even the band themselves. You can stream Fuzz’s new album, “II”, before it’s released right here via NPR.
DEAF WISH, noise rock band from Melbourne, Australia, starts their 2015 fall tour at Township in Chicago tonight! They just released their fourth full-length album titled “Pain” on Sub Pop Records and will be playing with Gross Pointe & Red Francis. Chicago’s very own artist, Patt Knerr, constructed this stunning piece of artwork on the show flyer above. His colorfully modern and spastic chaotic creations can be viewed and bought at Era Galleries and The Mind of Patt Knerr. Get psyched for the big show tonight by streaming Red Francis’ new self-titled release, Gross Pointe’s new 7″ EP on HoZac Records, and Deaf Wish’s new album “Pain“.
This lineup is stacked! Shiloh, Jackson Boone, Red Francis, and Shah Jahan will all be at Emporium (Wicker Park) in Chicago tonight, and it’s FREE. How can you beat that? It is going to be a fucking shit show. We haven’t heard from Shiloh in a bit because one of their members was in jail, welcome back! Jackson Boone is coming all the way from Portland, OR to grace us with his presence and we couldn’t be more excited about it. They just released their sophomore album titled, “Natural Changes” and it is an all around solid album and beautiful work of art, so get on your knees and suck on it right HERE. You can also watch them perform one of our favorite tunes from the album titled, “Dolphin Turned Into a Cat” on KEXP below.
RSVP here and enjoy all of this live at Emporium tonight!
Photograph by Carolina Mariana Rodriguez
What we all had been waiting for has come and gone, a weekend of getting fucked up and hearing all our favorite punk rock bands that we saw at Warped Tour back when it was cool. As the years passed, we’ve seen this fest go from a small cult favorite of shows to a massive mainstream fest that’s guaranteed to make a mark on whatever park is willing to host it. We mainly noticed how hard it’s gotten to crotch a pint of whiskey into the show. Here are reviews of some of the bands at Riot Fest Chicago 2015:
Photograph by Max Herman
Photograph by Shawn Morton
Mariachi El Bronx – It’s hard not to smile in the midst of a Mariachi band, especially one as dope as Mariachi El Bronx. A dance just kind of seeps out of you as you hear their Mexican styled pop tunes bounce off the stage. They even wear the whole Mariachi getup and it makes you wonder if they are quite possibly the greatest Mariachi band you’ve ever seen, it’s hard to say because they’re probably the only real Mariachi band you’ve ever seen. This was the 4-year anniversary of Matt Caughthran’s (singer) father’s death. As sad as that is, it seemed as if there was no other place he’d rather be.
Now they played pretty early on in the day on Friday so as the show went on and after I got a drink in me, I started to think… drop the fucking acoustics it’s time to hear some of The Bronx instead… but hey, whatever dudes do your thing!
Photograph by Max Herman
Eagles of Death Metal – Eagles of Death Metal are some true Rock n’ Rollers keeping it trill. This is a band that keeps the groove going the whole show. Front man, Jesse “Boots Electric” Hughes, just seems to be The Reverend of Rock as he preaches of the good life on stage. But where the hell was Josh Homme?! When they promote themselves as a duo and half of the band isn’t even there… something seems wrong there. I get it…he’s probably busy with Queens of the Stone Age or one of the many other projects he works with, but I felt an injustice when I came to see him rock out on the drums and he’s nowhere to be found. Besides that, it was a great show! They ended it off in a guitar dual between Dave Catching and Jesse Hughes. Who won you ask? Hmmm hard to say… My vote was for Darlin’ Dave, but they both fucking rule so I guess I was the real winner.
Coheed and Cambria – Coheed and Cambria! Ahhhh you guys are a tall glass of fucking fine wine. Only getting better with age. I must say, surprisingly one of my personal favorites of the night. It’s hard for a lot of these bands to stand up to the high expectations we had of them in our buzzed youth, but Coheed was tighter than ever. Claudio Sanchez’s hair has completely engulfed his head and the microphone at this point and it is spectacular. Their newest single, “Here to Mars” is reminiscent of their earliest sound in “The Second Stage Turbine Blade” and “In Keeping Secrets of Silent Earth: 3” with very polished and radio friendly hooks. The lyrical content of the love song is the only thing that makes me want to roll my eyes and gag a bit, but a little sappiness never hurt anyone. This show alone has gotten me excited for the new album and the other ones I never got around to buying, so bravo Coheed and Cambria!
No Doubt – Gwen Stefani, you beautiful talented goddess of a women you! Her abs looked like something you couldn’t even Photoshop. This was one of those shows that every dude’s girlfriend dragged him to see and when they got there it was like, “This isn’t so bad…actually, this is pretty awesome.” The colorful seizure inducing pink to green lights and flashy space bubblegum attire brought you right back to the 90’s as you sang along to every No Doubt hit you didn’t realize you knew the words to until right now. Gwen surely knows how to work the crowd, climbing way up the truss on side of the stage and literally flirting with the whole audience, saying: “You’re so cute” and “I love you”. One guy even got a kiss from her after she noticed he had her face tattooed to him (probably the one and only time he did not regret that tattoo) – well, you did it dude with Gwen Tat… Life goal complete!
Motorhead – I didn’t get to see all of Motorhead’s set, but from what I saw… there is no doubt about it that they have been rocking hard for a very long time. So fast and so tight! The powerhouse that is Motorhead cannot be denied the legendary status that they have reached! Although, Lemmy’s voice is… it is… it is not. It can be compared to the slurring ramble that you now hear out of Ozzy Osbourne. Ian Fraser “Lemmy” Kilmister has gone through a lot, I know. Motorhead had to drop out of Riot Fest Chicago in 2013 due to Lemmy’s health issues, and even recently tour dates were dropped because of the same problem. I commend him for pushing on, but I won’t lie, it seems like he’s on his last lap. Fuck it. RAGE ON MOTORHEAD!
FOOD OF THE DAY: Loaded Nacho’s from Tica’s Tacos – biggest and best bang for your buck! Nacho’s loaded in juicy pork (your choice of meat), smothered in cheese, pickled veggies, Baja sauce drizzled all over it and a lime to squirt with a fat jalapeno pepper on the side.
Chon – Sorry Chon, you guys really drew the short straw with your time slot. The first band of the festival on Saturday, the ground is muddy wet and destroyed from last night already, and everyone is either too hung over or not ready to show up to the fest yet. Noticed you had some technical difficulties with getting the kick drum to stay put and you could tell you weren’t so happy with the situation, but besides that… you boys can shred! Chon produces a very modern and clean sound evolved from the emo genre. It is borderline jazz, progressive math rock that almost seems a little too intelligent for riot fest, but cool nonetheless. Be sure to check out “Grow” on Sumerian Records by Chon.
Fidlar – Fidlar is a fucking site to see. As awesome as their self-titled album and their latest release “Too” are, they do not do them justice compared to their live show. It was pretty early in the fest and they already had everyone chugging down their beers and chanting, “I DRINK CHEAP BEER SO WHAT FUCK YOU!” They also had some technical difficulties when lead guitarist’s, Elvis Kuehn, amp went out as they began to play one of their new songs. The rest of the band fiddled around for a bit as they waited for the tech on stage to fix it, until rhythm guitarist/singer, Zac Carper, decided to take matters into his own hands as he handed his guitar to Elvis and jumped into the sea of people to crowd surf for the remainder of the song. As Zac climbs back on stage covered in mud to finish the set, an idiot security guard doesn’t realize he’s part of the band and tackles him on stage. Elvis joins in to pull Zac out of the mess calling the dude an “asshole” and the look on the security guard’s face of “I probably just got fired” proceeded. Next time, don’t be a hero dude… just enjoy the show! Fidlar, this mess of a show was my favorite of the entire fest!
The Joy Formidable – The Joy Formidable is a sonic tidal wave of sound. Their live show is so massive that it’s hard to believe they are just a 3-piece. You can really tell that they are some talented musicians that don’t need to show off their skills to prove it. They play what’s necessary to the song and if that means just railing on chords and crushing a standard rock beat the whole time (maybe a smash of the gong every once in awhile), then that’s exactly what they will do. If you haven’t gotten a chance to see them live you are truly missing out. Maybe bring some earplugs unless you like your ears to bleed after the show like I do.
Rancid – Rancid play “And Out Come The Wolves…” in full! At this point I was hammered, but these whole album sets at Riot Fest were great because everyone knows exactly what song is next and sings along. Nothing brings a crowd together like passing a bottle screaming the lyrics in each other’s faces! After 20 years of the release, “And Out Come The Wolves…” sounded even better than I remembered.
FOOD OF THE DAY: The Grilled Cheese from The Fat Shallot – The classiest of the fest foods! Muenster cheese melted between slices of sourdough bread with sautéed spinach and caramelized onions.
Porn star, Dakota Skye (pictured above), was spotted hula hooping and living it up at Riot Fest Chicago 2015!
Skating Polly – It’s the last day of Riot Fest, I’m hung over, and I got to the fest way too early. I’m hungry and I want breakfast, so I walk over to the Billy Goat Tavern Tent for a Cheezborger (some of the cheapest and best food at the whole fest! And I found it on the last day… FUCK). I’m still half dead eating this Borger when I hear a big ass, thick, raunchy fuzz tone coming from the Radicals Stage. It looks like punk rock Arya Stark kicking ass with a bass and I’m immediately in love. I head over to get a closer listen and did not regret it. These 2 talented chicks had the devil in their eyes. Skating Polly was the best way to start my day and kick the shit out of a hangover.
Less Than Jake – Less Than Jake is a good ol’ time and fun for everyone. You can find little youngsters and old metal heads all in the same circle pit at a Less Than Jake show. They shoot toilet paper guns and shirts into the crowd and are running across the stage at every chance they get. I figured ska music would be completely and utterly dead by 2015, but I guess not! To be fair, LTJ doesn’t just play ska music… its punk, rock, pop, and all of the above.
Tenacious D – Tenacious D is the greatest and best band in the world.
Snoop Dogg – Snoop Dogg just doing his thing at Riot Fest 2015. Decided to show up to his set 30 minutes late. Don’t piss off the Dogg, he’s going to keep getting high and doing his thing until he feels like it. When the Riot Staff told him he had 3 minutes left, he made it clear how he felt about that when he told them to fuck off and lit up a blunt. After going about 2 minutes over his time slot, the Riot Staff shut off his lights and then his microphone mid song. Sorry Snoop, that’s it for you… Hey, it sounded good while it lasted.
FOOD OF THE DAY: Cheezborger from the Billy Goat Tavern tent. Cheap, classic, and delicious cheezborger! Stacked beef patties, layered with cheese, a mound of pickles, raw onion, with ketchup n’ mustard on a Kaiser bun!
Yes, that is not a typo… you can watch it on PornHub.com. Interesting place for a music video premiere, but considering the content of the video, there couldn’t have been many other options. This video is definitely not safe for work and not for children. Unless you plan on giving them “the talk” soon after they enjoy the video. This Chicago Rock n’ Roll band is always looking to push their audiences’ limits, so as surprising as this is, it’s also very fitting. If you’re wondering who that beautiful woman is in the video, her name is Aurora Korealis and she is a model from Portland, OR. Now before you watch this video, let me forewarn you that some people would say this music video is basically just porn. Red Francis would probably agree with those people.
Watch the music video for “Song B” by Red Francis off of their new self-titled album here:
Watch more music videos by Red Francis and other Chicago rock bands at We Are The Television!