PURPLE SUNS: YOURS

So, Black Sabbath has a new album, but you probably already know about that and already formed an opinion. Cool.  Have you heard of Purple Suns? This south Jersey quartet reeks of an obvious sabbath influence but remain a tad more raw and raunchy, especially compared to that new album. Take a dab of well executed songwriting and blend it with an unhealthy amount of riffing and you get their new EP, “Yours,” which may leave you sick at the end of the first listen, but will drag you back in for another round…and then another….and…you get it…Self-destruction is fun.  The four song follow up to their four song debut snagged me hard as soon as the 2nd track (Villain) got slow, low ‘n bluesy….and just when I thought things almost got out of hand and got almost too loud, things got more outta control and even louder by the 3rd tune- which not-so-gracefully reminds us that “Apocalyptic times are coming to our lives,” and that this filthy four intends to maraud our ears while we incessantly return for more.   I can’t wait to see what these guys have in store for us with their upcoming split with Avoider. Bandcamp seems to be having issues with linking their players on wordpress, so just follow this link to hear this album: http://purplesuns.bandcamp.com/

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NEW ATLAS EP

Atlas recently completed their debut EP with recording engineer/producer Chris Badami of Portrait Recording Studios.  The 6 songs will collectively be known as “With Love, Evelyn McHale” and will officially be out on CD on July 19th with a celebratory show at the Stanhope House.  This marks the first “official” and proper output from the band since their 3-song demo “It’s Haunting.”   Though, not a concept album, the EP tells a story of sorts:  the struggle of young woman’s relationship with her own self-worth that ultimately leads to her elegant self-induced death.  You can hear a teaser from the EP below.

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(DAMN) THIS DESERT AIR TO RELEASE FULL LENGTH

The veteranized quintet delivers in your face post-hardcore in the vein of Quicksand and Failure while maintaining their own sense of individuality.  If the new material sounds anything like the sampler from early last year, we’re in for some driving/super-melodic tunes with thumping bass, unique vocal melodies/harmonies and driving guitar/drums.  The 9 songs go collectively by the name of “Pyramids,” and it’s their first official material since 2010’s “Distance Waits.” I’m sure this will be well worth the wait.  We’ll be posting more about this as it unfolds.  Check back! In the meantime, peep that sampler below.

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STOP ‘N CHAT w/ SARA KOSA- RECORDING ENGINEER

265139_133803580032866_1367393_nRemember our velvet suit interview w/ Sara Kosa after she built her Les Paul?  Well, since then, her old band (Young American Artists) imploded, she started and left (on good terms) a new band (Hell Mary), and she continues to exercise her love for audio, sound and music by working behind the board as a recording engineer where she does everything from tracking, to mixing, to mastering.  Recently, she gave us a brief (and modest) look into what got her to where she is now. 

How long have you been recording and what got you into it?
I started recording about 5 years ago.  The funny thing is I don’t actually remember how or why I got into it. I started out at William Paterson as a Music Business major and within a month realized that was a horrible idea. Somehow I ended up talking to Dave Kerzner, head of the audio program, and switched my major to Sound Engineering Arts.

 What’s the experience of recording your own band?
I try to treat it the same as recording any other band. I’ve heard other engineers say they don’t like recording their own band and that it’s frustrating, but I don’t mind it. I can separate myself from it…I try to treat it like my band members are the client. There can be downsides to it, but ultimately I don’t mind recording my own band.

 What is your favorite type of band to record and why?
I like recording punk/indie bands, probably because it’s what I mostly listen to. But, I usually end up enjoying anything I record.

What’s your favorite step of the recording process?
Probably mixing…it’s when I get to really work with what’s been recorded and [try to] make it sound good.

How do you find bands to record?
It seems to happen through word-of-mouth and meeting people at shows.

 What recording is your favorite sounding and why?  Least favorite?
One of my favorites is Presidents of the United States of America’s “Love Everybody” …which might sound like a weird choice haha, I’ve heard it described as ‘plain’, but..I don’t know I just really like how that album sounds. I love the tonality of everything, especially the drums…and I think it sounds so loud without sounding over-compressed. I don’t think I have a least favorite, at least not that I can think of right now.

I gotta ask this one.  Women on the recording end of the “industry”seem to be a rarity?  Has that effected your experience in any way?
It does seem to be a rarity, even in college there were (and still are) very few girls in the program. Sometimes I think it could make it harder. Similarly to like how I get treated as a girl that plays guitar…in punk/hardcore bands. People seem to not expect it.

Why should people record with you?
I care about making a good product and people happy more than I care about making money.

What do you do when you’re not recording music?
I play music, and during weekdays I work freelance editing audio books.

There you have it, told ya it was brief!  Sara tracked, played guitar on, mixed and mastered the EP below and you can find out more info on her by clicking ‘recording engineer’ above.  Talk about a workhorse!:

NEW HAWKINS TUNE/LPP PAINTING

Hawkins, the solo work of Killed by the Bull frontman, Justin Fullam, just released a beautiful/dreamy single accompanied by a representative painting done by Daniela Fullam.  Talk about a one-two-punch!  The track was recorded in their home with Sara Kosa at the board.  Listen to that below and check out Little Punk People by clicking THIS.

NOT THE BEES POST NEW TRACK/PROMISE EP

Listen to the new Not the Bees song below.  “Miles Under a Mountain” comes from their 6 song EP which will be out in early July.  You can peep their other EP’s here:  http://notthebeesnj.bandcamp.com/  Fans of Jawbreaker and Hot Water Music will not be disappointed!

INSOUCIANT SURE IS ACTIVE FOR A DEFUNCT BAND

Hardly 3 days passed since Insouciant released their latest EP, “Variable Resistor”- a five song post-hardcore/grunge influenced collection of new and old songs.  They sound angrier and dirtier than usual on this and seem to have returned to the garage or basement where they formed.  “Variable Resistor” could very well sneak into the Dischord Records catalog from any era…Anyway, it’s only been 3 days, just 3 days, and they hit us with a music video on top of that!  We can only hope that this means they will get together and let us experience them again live, but I’m not counting on it. Insouciant always plays by their own rules and I know they will only get back together to play if they all truly wanted to…no cashin’ in here.  Listen to the EP and watch the video below.  Check out NOTROCK RECORDS for more updates on their active roster and to stay up on what members of Insouciant are up to now.

PURPLE SUNS DROP NEW EP FRIDAY

South Jersey riff masters, Purple Suns hint at a new EP release this Friday (tomorrow)!  If it’s anything like the track they released earlier this week, we’re in for a some face-melting shit!  Check that song out below, as well as their debut EP.  You can catch them live tonight at the Saint in Asbury Park, NJ.

FOX REACTIONS: STAY PAWSITIVE

The title may not be serious, but the new EP from Fox Reactions is…These five songs remind me of a lot of the stuff I was listening to when I first got heavily into hardcore back in the mid 2000’s with bands like Kid Dynamite and Good Clean Fun.   Now, the poppier side of hardcore never fully drew me in unless it was done a certain way…Fox Reactions does it that certain way with short songs, meaningful lyrics, tasteful vocal trade-offs and appropriate production.  With only one song creeping over the 1 minute mark, the quartet crammed 5 pogo-friendly anthems into a four minute box and delivered it signed, stamped and sealed with their take on feminism, sexism, religion and personal politics without sounding preachy.  They don’t hide behind metaphors in the process; they very much want you to know what they’re singing about and effectively deliver that message via no-bullshit, in-your-face, pop-punk laced with the occasional gang vocal.  The EP ends on a lighter note with a tribute song that ties into the title- this one may be a metaphor actually, I’m not quite sure.  Listen for yourself below!

PLASTIC CROSS: GRAYSCALE RAINBOWS

Craig FuYoung has been my favorite social commentator on modern existence ever since I first read along to “Generica” by The Degenerics.  His way of organizing his thoughts backed by the strong emotion in his voice comes with great conviction and leaves a strong impact.  When I discovered he assumed lyric writing and vocal duties in a new project, I immediately bought the album before even listening.  I was that confident that I would enjoy his new band, Plastic Cross.  Right, I was.  Lyrically, “Grayscale Rainbows” picks up right where the last Degenerics EP left off (if there was something in between that and this please let me know!), except this time Craig is even more to the point and more sarcastic than ever, yet still maintains a strong sense of imagery.  Each song’s message is clear and ties into the overall concept of a drone-heavy future that could very well be now.  The 18 track album delves directly into what I love about hardcore/punk while remaining refreshing and interesting.  Melodic guitar lines drive the urgent songs backed by bass lines that venture off the root.  Not every song has a chorus, but each offers standout parts.  They take risks in tempos and structures with guitar tone that’s often as wet as the Dead Kennedys.  This time around, Craig screams/sings in a lower register than what we’re used to in The Degenerics and Kamikaze, but it still sounds like him and if you weren’t sure, read along!  Stream 3 of the songs below and purchase the whole LP from Don Giovanni.