Sunday, January 31, 2016
Song: "History Repeats"
Artist: Ivy League TX
Place Of Origin: Midland, Texas
Years Active: 2011-present
WHAT I THINK THE SONG IS ABOUT:
"History Repeats" appears to be a song about a relationship that was doomed from the start. The two people involved in the relationship do have a lot in common. Unfortunately, it seems that all their bad traits are what are similar. It appears that the relationship is an on again off again type thing, where all the problems of the past seem to rare their ugly head again. In this vicious circle, history does indeed repeat, and all for the worse.
IVY LEAGUE TX DISCOGRAPHY (Full length albums only):
2013 - "Transparency" (6131 Records)
CURRENT STATUS OF IVY LEAGUE TX:
Ivy League TX is a band that hails from Midland, Texas and came on the scene around 2011. The band released two EP's that year, a self titled and "Summer Sessions". In 2013, the band hooked up with 6131 Records and recorded and released their debut full length album, "Transparency". The band has since been on the road, trying to get their name out there. Currently, the band just dropped another self titled EP in 2016 which is available through their bandcamp page. Ivy League TX is a band that is still very much trying to find their sound in the world of punk rock music. Their sound is somewhere in between of street/skate punk of a band like Face To Face and the melodic punk sound of early Thrice material. The difference is that both Face To Face and Thrice have established their sound and Ivy League TX is still searching theirs out. As of now, Ivy League TX is nothing more than an opening act. I don't say that in a negative way. Every band has to start somewhere, it's those who really harness their sound, their direction and who they want to be that start moving to the forefront of their particular scene. Ivy League TX shows promise. Hopefully, they begin to blossom in the future.
TEN IVY LEAGUE TX SONGS YOU SHOULD CHECK OUT:
2. History Repeats
9. Losing Sleep
Sunday, January 24, 2016
Song: "Your Hate Mentality"
Artist: 7 Seconds
Album: "Leave A Light On"
Place Of Origin: Reno, Nevada
Years Active: 1980-present
WHAT I THINK THE SONG IS ABOUT:
"Your Hate Mentality" is a song that appears as if it's aim is directly at right wing conservatives. Those who perhaps have a view of freedom and liberty that does not pertain to everyone, but, they feel it's their right to push their agenda on everyone that doesn't agree with them, whether that's about patriotism, religion, gun control, you name it. It's about people who are so steadfast in their belief on certain issues that you cannot even have an intelligent debate with them because they just feel they are right and you are wrong, regardless of what points you have.
7 SECONDS DISCOGRAPHY (Full length albums only):
1980 - "Socially Fucked Up" (Vicious Scam Tapes)
1981 - "3 Chord Politics" (Vicious Scam Tapes)
1984 - "The Crew" (BYO Records)
1985 - "Walk Together, Rock Together" (BYO/Positive Force Records)
1986 - "New Wind" (Byo/Positive Force Records)
1987 - "Live! One Plus One" (Giant Records)
1988 - "Ourselves" (Restless Records)
1989 - "Soulforce Revolution" (Restless Records)
1991 - "Old School" (Headhunter Records)
1993 - "Out The Shizzy" (Headhunter Records)
1995 - "alt.music.hardcore" (Headhunter Records)
1995 - "The Music, The Message" (Epic Records)
1999 - "Good To Go" (Destiny Records)
2000 - "Scream Real Loud...Live!" (SideOneDummy Records)
2005 - "Take It Back, Take It On, Take It Over" (SideOneDummy Records)
2014 - "Leave A Light On" (Rise Records)
CURRENT STATUS OF 7 SECONDS:
7 Seconds is a legendary hardcore punk band out of Reno, Nevada. Heavily influenced by The Dils, 7 Seconds set out to play a brand of hardcore, straight edge punk rock music right from the start. Formed by brothers Kevin Seconds and Steve Youth, the band got it's start in 1980, releasing their first cassette, "Socially Fucked Up" and 1981' "3 Chord Politics". Both of these albums would be re-released later on various compilations. In 1984 and 1985, 7 Seconds cemented their spot in punk rock with two definitive statements of hardcore punk rock music with their albums "The Crew" and "Walk Together, Rock Together". In the mid to late 80's, the band began to shift it's sound a bit, almost having a new wave/pop punk feel to their songs, beginning with the 1986 release "New Wind". Early fans of the band were disheartened to say the least about the band's shift in direction to a much softer sound. With punk rock gaining a rebirth of sorts in the early 90's thanks in part to bands like Green Day, Bad Religion, Rancid and The Offspring, 7 Seconds actually hooked on with major label Epic Records and returned to their roots with the album "The Music, The Message". Their major label status was short lived as the band would eventually hook up with punk label SideOneDummy Records and record and release "Take It Back, Take It On, Take It Over" in 2005. The band went on a semi-hiatus after this release with Kevin Seconds working mostly on solo acoustic material. In 2014, the band did make a comeback with their album "Leave A Light On", released through Rise Records. Currently, the band was going full force in support of their latest album "Leave A Light On" with touring and what not when they had to abruptly halt everything when Kevin Seconds' brother Steve Youth needed both treatment for alcoholism as well as finding out he had a tumor in his mouth that needed to be removed. Kevin actually started a gofundme page to help out his brother and if you are a fan of the band and perhaps have a few bucks you can lend to help out with medical costs, you can google "Steve Youth" and you can easily get a link to the page. When I first started getting into punk rock, it was bands like No Use For A Name and Pennywise that were my favorites. As you start researching back through some of the history of the music, you find the Bad Religions, the Black Flags and the 7 Seconds that were super influential to bands like No Use, Pennywise, Ignite, Good Riddance and so on. One band that I really loved that was a very short lived project was Deviates. Listen to either of their albums and tell me that it's not hugely influenced by 7 Seconds. Hopefully, Steve gets back to good health and the 7 Seconds train rolls on! Their music is always relevant and it's always true.
TEN 7 SECONDS SONGS YOU SHOULD CHECK OUT:
1. We're Gonna Fight
2. Walk Together, Rock Together
3. Young 'Til I Die
5. Clenched Fists, Black Eyes
6. I Hate Sports
7. New Wind
8. Leave A Light On
9. Rules To Follow
10. If The Kids Are United (Sham 69 cover)
Sunday, January 17, 2016
Song: "See It Die"
Artist: Only Crime
Place Of Origin: Santa Cruz, California
Years Active: 2014
WHAT I THINK THE SONG IS ABOUT:
"See It Die" appears to be a song about a people's beliefs and ideals dying. It almost feels like the vocalist and many like him have almost given up to the system or the powers that be. Their soul is dying. As much as the vocalist tries to get them to rise up and stand for their beliefs, it almost feels like a losing battle. It's a place where complacency has won out over revolt and the vocalist is almost sad to see it dying right before his eyes.
ONLY CRIME DISCOGRAPHY (Full length albums only):
2004 - "To The Nines" (Fat Wreck Chords)
2007 - "Virulence" (Fat Wreck Chords)
2014 - "Pursuance" (Rise Records)
CURRENT STATUS OF ONLY CRIME:
Only Crime formed as a band back in 2003 and features Russ Rankin (Good Riddance) on vocals and Bill Stevenson (Black Flag, Descendents, All) on drums. In 2002, Rankin wasn't happy that his band Good Riddance seemed to be touring less and less and he wanted to be on the road, so he decided to form Only Crime as a way to tour more extensively. The band began shipping demos out in 2003 and eventually signed on with Fat Wreck Chords, the same label that released Good Riddance's albums. After the band released their second album, 2007's "Virulence", 3 band members left and were replaced. At this point in Only Crime's career, it appeared that the band was going to become a much more focal point for Rankin as Good Riddance had announced they had broken up. Due to some health issues involving Stevenson, the band did not take up as much time as hoped. Rankin began working on a solo album and by 2012, Good Riddance had reformed and began touring. Stevenson's health rebounded enough for Only Crime to release their third album "Pursuance" in 2014. Rankin had said the album had been finished a year before it's actual release. Currently, haven't heard much news on the Only Crime front. Their last tour was in the fall of 2014 and Rankin's main band Good Riddance released a new album in 2015 and the band has been touring in support of that. Only Crime isn't too much different from Good Riddance, obviously the vocals of Rankin are prevalent on both. Only Crime is heavily influenced by 80's hardcore bands, most notably Black Flag. If you like your punk to be hard, aggressive and political, then you would like Only Crime. If you're a fan of Good Riddance, think of Only Crime as an extension of them. I've always been a fan of Rankin in any project he does. Definitely one of the great voices in punk rock music and his work in Only Crime is second to none.
TEN ONLY CRIME SONGS YOU SHOULD CHECK OUT:
1. Life Was Fair
2. Take Me
5. Brand New Scene
7. Doomsday Breach
8. What We've Become
9. In Blood
Sunday, January 10, 2016
Song: "The Longing Goes Away/Starboy"
Artist: Eddie Vedder w/ Jimmy Flemion
Place Of Origin: Evanston, Illinois
Years Active: 1984-present
WHAT I THINK THE SONG IS ABOUT:
For this week's Song Of The Week, you get a bonus... 2 songs for the price of 1!! "The Longing Goes Away" is a song that reads like a letter to someone who has passed away. They say things are supposed to get easier with time, but if you maybe have some regrets or there are things you wish you said to this person before they passed, it makes it much harder on you. "Starboy" is a tongue-in-cheek song about making it in the business and what you have to do for record execs and bigwigs to become a star. Dirty dealings with "the man" is the price for fame!! Both of these songs were performed live by Eddie Vedder at a show in Austin, TX on 11/11/12. He was joined by the writer of both songs Jimmy Flemion, who recorded these songs with his band The Frogs. The Frogs were a band that was really taken in by the grunge era bands, including Pearl Jam, Smashing Pumpkins and Nirvana. They were a quirky band from Milwaukee, Wisconsin which was active from 1980 till 2012 when Jimmy's brother Dennis passed away.
EDDIE VEDDER DISCOGRAPHY (Full length albums only):
2007 - "Into The Wild" (J Records)
2011 - "Ukulele Songs" (Monkey Wrench Records)
CURRENT STATUS OF EDDIE VEDDER:
Eddie Vedder was recording home demos as early as 1984. In the mid to late 80's, he moved to San Diego, California and was a part of many small local bands including Surf And Destroy, The Butts, Indian Style and Bad Radio. Of course, in 1990, Vedder would become the lead singer of a new band from Seattle called Pearl Jam and the rest is history. With Pearl Jam, Vedder was an intregal part of the whole "grunge" or Seattle music scene and would become one of rock music's greatest voices no doubt. Pearl Jam would go on to release 10 studio albums and are still very much an active band, selling out major tours at each and every stop. In 2007, Vedder was asked by actor/director Sean Penn to create the music soundtrack for his film "Into The Wild". As a major songwriting contributor to Pearl Jam, it was no surprise to see Vedder be successful at a solo venture. In 2011, Vedder released an all ukulele album titled simply "Ukulele Songs". This album was full of personal songs which shine a light on Eddie's songwriting and vocal prowess. Though Vedder has had several solo tours in between Pearl Jam ventures, Pearl Jam is and continues to be his main focus. The band's most recent release was 2013's "Lightning Bolt" and they just finished up a tour of South America in November of 2015. Eddie Vedder, along with Nirvana's Kurt Cobain, Soundgarden's Chris Cornell and Alice In Chains' Layne Staley, really changed the face of rock and roll in the early 90's and beyond. His vocal style and delivery inspired a slew of bands that followed including the likes of Staind, Stone Sour, Bush, Seether and many, many more. It's also amazing the list of performers that Eddie has shared a stage with during his career. It's a who's who of rock and roll, Bruce Springsteen, U2, The Rolling Stones, The Doors, Split Endz/Crowded House/Neil Finn, Neil Young, Mike Ness (Social Distortion), The Ramones, Tim Armstong (Rancid), Beck, The Strokes, Queens Of The Stone Age, Roger Waters, Bad Religion, Tom Petty, Pete Townsend and The Who. And there's more than that too!! I believe that Pearl Jam is lining up a North American tour for 2016 so I would assume new music from Vedder won't surface until perhaps late 2016 or early 2017, most likely in the form of a new Pearl Jam album.
TEN EDDIE VEDDER SONGS YOU SHOULD CHECK OUT (Non-Pearl Jam songs):
1. Hard Sun (Indio cover)
2. My City Of Ruins (Bruce Springsteen cover)
3. Against The 70's (w/ Mike Watt and Dave Grohl)
4. Constellations (w/ Jack Johnson)
5. The Waiting (w/ Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers)
6. Ship Song (Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds cover)
8. I'm One (w/ The Who)
9. Without You
10. Society (Jerry Hannan cover)
Sunday, January 3, 2016
Artist: Tim Barry
Place Of Origin: Richmond, Virginia
Years Active: 1990-present
WHAT I THINK THE SONG IS ABOUT:
"222" appears to be a song about someone who has passed on, maybe a best friend or even a big brother. Definitely someone that the vocalist looked up to. It seems no matter where the vocalist travels, he feels his friend is there, or has been there. In other words, he's always with him and that tends to fend off his lonliness. It also helps that he remains in contact with the person's girl, his friends and his family. By the end of the song, the vocalist expresses that he can't wait to see him on the other side, but that he ain't going anywhere soon and he isn't giving up on life easy.
TIM BARRY DISCOGRAPHY (Full length albums only):
2006 - Laurel St. Demo (Suburban Home Records)
2006 - Rivanna Junction (Suburban Home Records)
2008 - Manchester (Suburban Home Records)
2009 - 28th & Stonewall (Suburban Home Records)
2012 - 40 Miler (Chunksaah Records)
2014 - Raising Hell & Living Cheap: Live In Richmond (Chunksaah Records)
2014 - Lost & Rootless (Chunksaah Records)
CURRENT STATUS OF TIM BARRY:
If you heard the Tim Barry of 1996, and then heard the Tim Barry of 2006, you'd be like, wow, that's the same guy?!! Of course, when Tim Barry got started back in 1990, he was the frontman of hardcore punk band Avail, hailing from Richmond, Virginia. He spent 18 years in that spot, releasing 6 full length albums with Avail as well as several EP's and live albums. In 2004, Barry began to focus more on his solo career, which basically featured himself and his acoustic guitar performing folk, roots-y music. Now, most times I enjoy these artists' former bands to their solo material, not that I don't like their solo stuff. But, if you asked me if I like Joey Cape's solo stuff or Lagwagon stuff better, I'd choose Lagwagon. Tony Sly's solo stuff or No Use For A Name, I'd take No Use. Tim Barry is one of the few where i'd take his solo stuff over his work with Avail. There's something just so raw and personal about his solo material. I'd say Tim Barry and Hot Water Music's Chuck Ragan have really perfected the punk rock vocalist goes acoustic genre. Barry spent the early part of his solo career on punk rock label Suburban Home Records where he released 4 solid albums, 2006's "Laurel St. Demo" and "Rivanna Junction", 2008's "Manchester" and 2009's "28th & Stonewall". When it came time to release 2012's "40 Miler", Barry hooked on with The Bouncing Souls label, Chunksaah Records, where he remains to the current day. Barry's style is more reminiscent of Johnny Cash than any punk rock artist. His songs are very personal accounts of living day to day, overcoming struggle or perhaps embracing struggle. His songs often involve life on the road, the weary traveller and his lyrics often paint a picture of the places he has been. No matter how far he travels, it always seems that he comes back to Richmond, Virginia and he has great pride in where he's from. His shows seem to turn into great sing-a-longs. Good people enjoying good songs and good beer! I could easily see Tim Barry owning an acoustic stage at a Warped Tour and just as easily, and perhaps more comfortably, playing a local bar in a small town. Barry's most recent release was 2014's "Lost & Rootless" and he did perform live shows in the summer of 2015. I'm sure he's hard at work on the follow up to that album.
TEN TIM BARRY SONGS YOU SHOULD CHECK OUT:
1. Avoiding Catatonic Surrender
2. Thing Of The Past
3. Idle Idylist
4. No News From North
5. This November
6. Driver Pull
7. Shed Song
8. Dog Bumped
9. The James
10. Lost & Rootless