The 3rd Episode of the cable tv Show, “THE ROCK STAR STORIES CHICAGO” features: ALL TIME LOW, FOREVER THE SICKEST KIDS, THE DEAR HUNTER and KISS KISS in this one-hour show created by Chicago media students.
(one minute of black followed by one hour show…)
New music videos from Alice in Chains, Owl City, Ben Harper and Relentless7, Fallborn,Irene Nelson, You Scream I Scream, Jason Damato, Adam Gilbert, Andre Delano and Shwayze added this week.
Swept Away Media and Live Nation present:
Student Press Conference with New Found Glory and Never Shout Never (more acts TBA)
Friday November 27th at the Pompano Beach Amphitheater
Time: estimated at 4pm
Open to all student journalists in Florida including those home on break for Thanksgiving.
DOES NOT INCLUDE TICKETS FOR THE SHOW. Tickets can be purchasedÂ here.
We’re so excited. Â To make your reservation contact us at email@example.com but don’t delay!
Candi Lynn – Ill Miss Behavin
Untalented, uninspiring, and downright trashy, if this is what the criteria is for a musician today, then Candi Lynn is you “gurl.” If you can first get past the album cover that looks like it was a bad day at glamour shots, then be prepared for song titles such as: Bitch Please, Stop Trippin, and Love Ya Body (none of which exemplify any talent.) This all comes out as harsh, but better to stop it in its tracks rather then let the embarrassment go on. The only good that could come from this album is if you are in a state of depression and need a good laugh, it will sure cure you! Maybe Candi Lynn was going for a Lil Mama inspired sound, butÂ Lil Mama managed a single of her debut album. Out of five !’sÂ Candi Lynn’s album “Ill Miss Behavin”Â gets a ?.
Twin Atlantic – Vivarium
Oh how the UK gives us such great names in music! Twin Atlantic’s album “Vivarium” is no exception. The band carries a distinctive voice, but that could be because of their lovely Scottish Accents. Yes, Scottish!Â Twin Atlantic originated in Glasgow, Scotland in early 2007, and from there on have been building a fan base opening for such great acts as: Circa Survive, Smashing Pumpkins, Funeral for a Friend, and Thrice. If you like Taking Back Sunday and Head Automatica (who were both on tour together in 2006) then it is almost a guarantee you will fall just as hard for Twin Atlantic. They only downfall of this mini debut album is how it may seem a little repetitive. One might have trouble telling one song apart from the others. However, with a pretty boy lead, Sam McTrusy, and talented bandmates following, Barry McKenna, Ross McNae, Craig Kneale, the album will at least gather some attention rather then going unnoticed. Out of five stars Twin Atlantic’s “Vivarium” gets three and a half.
Cavo – Bright Nights Dark Days
The minute Cavo’s single “Champagne” starts playing in your iTunes, you will recognize that mainstream rock sound. This is Cavo’s fourth album, but is their first record with the well known Reprise Records, and is produced by David Bendeth. “Bright Nights, Dark Days” songs are filled with emotion, that will allow an abundance amount of people to relate to their heart felt lyrics, leaving the audiences everywhere wanting more. Cavo is for fans of: Nickelback, Three Doors Down, and Seether.Â Lead singer Casey Walker’s voice gives the band an effortless sound, along with catchy guitar riffs of Chris Hobbs, opening bass lines from Brian Smith, and captivating drum patterns from Chad LaRoy. The sound being so universal will be there biggest dilemma, but aside from that, expect Cavo to be on a radio station near you. Also don’t be surprised if your mother or father in their late 30′s to 50′s think they are “hardcore” and “hip” for liking one of the band’s songs, because face it, look at the fan base of the bands listed above…..exactly. Out of five stars Cavo’s “Bright Nights, Dark Days” gets three stars.
Holly Williams – Here With Me
Heavy on the Country, so if you are not a fan of it, Holly Williams will not be a artist for you. But if you are, Holly Williams has a soulful voice that has this peaceful and calming affect. Holly exemplifies talent through her instrumental abilities, beautifully trained vocals, and her touching lyrics. One of here songs titled “Mama” is wistful for any mother and daughter, and shows how grounded and down to earth her family made her. Also in the song, Holly talks about her mother who “never wore your (her) pain to thick,” giving Holly a strong foundation for the many obstacles to come in the music industry. Ms. Williams has made an appearance on The Late, Late Show with Craig Ferguson, and was also featured in People Magazines. Holly Williams is making a name for herself, and I do believe CMT will being hearing much more from the 28 year old in the coming years. Out of five stars, Holly William’s sophomore album receives a three.
Where It Ends
(Verve Music Group)
Here I am, sitting on my bed with my laptop at hand, typing, while the fifth track of 16 Frameâ€™s debut album Where It Ends plays on my iTunes and Iâ€™m in love. Of the few CDâ€™s and bands that Iâ€™ve happened across randomly, and the even fewer that Iâ€™ve written for The Rock Star Stories, Iâ€™ve never completely fell in such a deep, compassionate LOVE within the first minute of listening. 16 Frames is an LA based band led by singer and songwriter Steve Sulikowski and are dripping with a classic alternative rock sound that is just amazing. The band itself has already had songs featured on hit primetime television shows like Kyle XY, Private Practice, and the last season finale of the ever popular Cali-based show The Hills. Now, when I first happened upon a picture of the band before I had even listened to their music, I was immediately struck with â€œCold War Kids.â€ The band had only made that first impression because Sulikowski honestly reminds me of the singer of the Cold War Kids, therefore I believed Iâ€™d be reviewing a wannabe British rock band but it wasnâ€™t the case at all. Itâ€™s just as they described on their websiteâ€™s bio: â€œPrecisely 35 seconds into the opening trackâ€¦the clouds part and a monumental chorus breaks through.â€
Yeah, that pretty much explains everything.
(Zoe Records / Rounder Records Group)
â€œArtist: Vienna Teng
Album: Inland Territory
When I see the genre category â€œunclassifiableâ€ I generally get a little nervous as to what to expect. Thankfully, Tengâ€™s music is anything but â€œunclassifiableâ€ in that sense. Vienna Teng is another one of those folksy-pop female singer/songwriters that tend to worm their way into the music scene and are one in a few. She strikes me as a more gospel version of Michelle Branch, since her voice sounds like it belongs in a church service choir. Itâ€™s a perfect match for her folk-pop song. Teng, who has several albums and preformed on David Lettermanâ€™s Late Night Show, is a California resident who made her way here with her parents from the island nation of Taiwan. Though, as I said in the review of Lisa Hanniganâ€™s single â€œI Donâ€™t Know,â€ Iâ€™ve never been a huge fan of folksy singer/songwriters, but thereâ€™s always and exception to the rule. Iâ€™m captivated by her voice, unique lyrics, and her amazing talent at playing the piano. If you love folk-pop singer/songwriters like Michelle Branch, Vanessa Carlton, and Anna Nalick, pick up Vienna Tengâ€™s album and you wonâ€™t be disappointed.
(Heads Up International; Concord Music Group)
I want to write out my opinion of just my first impression of the CD itself before I listen to the musicâ€¦ The cover itself looks harmless enough, but nothing that would interest me in the least. Her name wards me off on its own. And, by looks of it, one of her songs may be… French? (Its title reads: â€œNon, Non, Non,â€ or â€œNo, No, Noâ€ for those who know nothing of the French language). Okay. Letâ€™s listenâ€¦
Bien sÃ»r, le CD est en franÃ§ais!
Well, the SINGER speaks French anyways.
Zap Mama is actually a Walloon, hailing from Brussels, Belgium, and belongs to the afro-beat/pop/jazzy/folk genre. I was pretty excited to hear music in French, since Iâ€™m still taking the language and I find it fun to see how much I actually understand, but this was, uh, not what I was expecting. To put it bluntly: No, I do not like it. At all. Itâ€™s a bit tooâ€¦ European maybe? There isnâ€™t much I can really say about it. Zap Mama blends together a strange mixture of music that just odd in general and left me thinking, â€œwhat is this? And, why is this?… I donâ€™t know.â€ Listen to this if you like being left with the feeling of not knowing who you are anymore.
Remember when you used to try and speak underwater when you were younger? Straight out of the United Kingdom, Wild Beasts’s new video “Hooting and Howling” is reminiscent of just that. With somewhat repetitive lyrics, their new song features the lead singer with an angelic voice similar to that of Tom Yorke’s from Radiohead. Although the video is beautifully crafted with close-ups of the individual band members playing instruments underwater, the song does not match the video in complexity. Angelic, yet almost moanlike voices are characteristic of this band, which is currently touring Europe. If you’re into techno-indie, this band is for you. However, I think their song “Two Dancers” is superior to this, although a bit too commercial.
Band Grade: B (due to a lack of info on their MySpace page).
The legendary Pearl Jam is at it again with their new album Backspacer. The video for this song features the quintet in their natural habitat – a concert stage. Surprisingly, it was not a cliche “live performance” video as many contemporary Music Videos are, but instead had very appealing visual effects. As much as I would desire to equate this with other Pearl Jam hits such as “Comatose”, “Alive” or even “Jeremy”, “The Fixer” is just another typical rock song – and I frankly expect a little more out of a band as renown as Pearl Jam. This band falls under the wonderful classification made by the sick boy in the feature film Trainspotting. He says “Well, at one time, you’ve got it, and then you lose it, and it’s gone forever. All walks of life: George Best, for example. Had it, lost it. Or David Bowie, or Lou Reed.” He might as well have just added Pearl Jam to that list.
Band Grade: A – (only because its Pearl Jam).
The complete antithesis of the Killers’ song “I’ve Got Soul, But I’m Not a Soldier” is definitely Wallpaper’s similarly titled video “I Got Soul, I’m So Wasted.” Not only does it parallel the feel of a good party song, but the video makes you feel part of the action – just like the Bacardi Limon commercial featuring Matt and Kim. My only prior knowledge of Wallpaper was of his remix of “Combination Pizza Hut and Taco Bell” arguably a disturbing parody, but entertaining nonetheless. Out of the videos I’ve recently seen, this has been the most impressing. And, from a photographer’s standpoint, the lighting and background detail a typical party scene. The video focuses on him the whole time which is analogous to Justice’s colorful and surprisingly similar D.A.N.C.E. video. Either way, I commend Wallpaper on a fabulous song and video and highly recommend that you check out the comparisons I made, because, frankly, who doesn’t enjoy a good party song (even if it’s BEP’s “Tonight’s Gonna Be a Good Night” or Lady Gaga’s “Just Dance”)?
Band/Artist: A (he’s an upcoming artist featured on Pitchfork, Current, and his LP album comes out on September 22, 2009)
Meiko – “Under My Bed”
The song and video is typical Meiko: indie vocals and soft instrumentals. I like it, because of its stylistic elements and because Meiko is establishing herself (especially after her big hit “Boys with Girlfriends”). The only problem is that it just doesn’t stand out.
Paper Route – “Carousel”
With high contrast light and a despairing environment, this video stands out from most typical rock/indie/electronica bands. If you enjoy Death Cab for Cutie’s “I Will Possess Your Heart,” (possibly the only good song on their album, but I digress), then this video will appeal to you. As a band, they are so stylistically diverse (as opposed to Meiko) which really will boost their fan base. They just played in South Florida on the 16th of September, and I’m upset that I’m missed them. However, I can’t wait to see more of them.
Aeroplane Pageant – “Stars Still Pretty”
I’m a softie for psychedelic indie music, so this band excites something within me. They’re been reviewed by big names (Pitchfork, The Post) but also have some strange reviews on their site (www.therollingstone.org?, and LMNOP.com); they also have really harmonic melodies and a unique – to say the least – video. My only issue, and the reason why it doesn’t get a full review, is that the subtitles on the video completely wreck the ambiance and message of the song. The video alone reminds me of those weird cartoons I used to watch when I was younger, like Salad Fingers and Old Gregg, but that’s not necessarily a good thing.
I wish I could say that I’ve always had a knack for analyzing musical elements or being able to determine pitches and chords, but I can’t. Instead, I’ve worked hard, researched, and listened to quite a variety of songs in order to build a foundation of knowledge which I have based my judgments upon. Luckily, I have been blessed with the skill of cross-examining, finding counter-examples and pointing out songs which are analogous to those which I’m reviewing. You can check out my upcoming vlogs soon. In the meantime, explore all of The Rock Star Stories that you can!
Just added: Sick Puppies “You’re Going Down”, Street Sweeper Social Club “One 100 Little Curses”, and Like A Storm “Chemical Infatuation”. All videos picked by our wonderful cast member…..if you like em let us know!