By: Nick Manduley
Orlando, Florida post-hardcore outfit I Met a Yeti dropped their latest single “All Magic Users Swim In The Loomy Gloom” on August 16th. The single is off the five-piece band’s sophomore EP Camp Yeti which is due out October 4th. “All Magic Users” is an explosive track of intricate lead guitars and R&B inspired vocal melodies that can only be described as beautiful. Every performance on this track is executed with deadly precision; guitarists Anthony Gonzales and Ricardo Antonio Rodriguez provide some aggressive riffage and clean-cut lead sections, while bassist Lui Wancel and drummer Alexander Torresola hold down an absolutely air-tight rhythm section. Vocalist Daisy Chamberlin delivers a wonderful vocal performance ladened with soaring harmonies and infectious melodies, but do not be mistaken; Chamberlin’s screamed vocals are a true testament to their vocal prowess.
I Met a Yeti broke into the math rock scene during the summer of 2016 with their single “Windows.” The track features a cacophony of clean toned guitars, dreamy vocal melodies, and somber screams. The five-piece released their debut EP …I Can Still See You later that year just before Christmas; the release features face-melting tracks such as “Is It Free, Or Isn’t It?” and “Where’s Nelson?” which ends with a rather cheeky quote by Sassy the Sasquatch from DIY animator Jarrad Wright’s critically acclaimed web-series, The Big Lez Show.
The band will be embarking on an eight day tour of the southeast and Texas in support of Camp Yeti. This tour will kick off on October 13th in Denton, Texas and conclude on October 21st in Orlando. “All Magic Users Swim In The Loomy Gloom” is currently available on all major streaming platforms.
Camp Yeti Tour Dates
10/13 – Denton, TX – Backyard on Bell (PlusFest 2)
10/14 – Austin, TX – TBA
10/15 – San Antonio, TX – Twin Sister Cantina
10/16 – Houston, TX – Notsuoh
10/17 – Baton Rouge, LA – Southside Arts Center
10/18 – Woodstock, GA – Connect Live
10/19 – Jacksonville, FL – Raindogs
10/21 – Orlando, FL – Soundbar
By: Nick Manduley
Scottsdale, Arizona-based emo pop-punkers First and Forever have been making waves in their local scene and on social media. From having their music featured in various videos from major Youtubers, to having one of their singles break one hundred thousand streams on Spotify, First and Forever has quickly proven that they mean business when it comes their music.
The band has put out three separate singles since late 2018, each one showcasing their excellent songwriting ability and musical dynamic. “Chicago” is an emotional powerhouse about the fallout from a tough breakup. The upbeat, distorted guitars and hook-laden vocals give way to a clean guitar acting as the backdrop for a gut-wrenching, emotional vocal performance that takes the listener right back into that powerful chorus.
On “A Violet Ending” the band’s dynamic sound is a bit more prominent; the gentle, ethereal clean-toned guitars seamlessly weave in and out of the more punk sections. The vocal layering and group vocals immediately label this song as something that listeners everywhere will be shouting every word to when they see First and Forever in concert for the first time. “Nothing Left to Burn” features a hard-hitting a chorus catchy enough to get anyone hooked from the first listen. The energetic vocal performance and crowd-commanding drumming on this track immediately conjure up mental images of circle pits, crowd surfers, and fans shouting lyrics back to the band on stage; pretty much everything that makes a pop punk show fun and memorable. These songs have proven that First and Forever is a band to keep an eye on in the near future.
By: Nick Manduley
Lo-fi alternative rock solo act Lavender Sky released their sophomore LP “Technical Limitations” on July 26th. “Vines”, the first of thirteen tracks, opens the record with a casio keyboard drum loop followed by the strumming of a very twinkly, clean-toned guitar. The listener is quickly enveloped in a hazy fog of psychedelic guitar and synth tones, combined with reverby, melodramatic vocals courtesy of vocalist and guitarist Luke Hoffman. “This Car Climbed Mt. Washington” opens with an infectious but gentle guitar riff that is reminiscent of bands like Turnover. Tracks such as “Stop H8in”, “When I’m Not Sick”, “I Don’t Know (RIP)”, and the album’s outro were completely improvised, and surprisingly wound up being some of the most profound songs on the record.
“It really helped recording stuff just from my brain and heart on the spot into the tape recorder,” says Hoffman in the description of the record on his bandcamp account. “Some of them ended up being the deepest tracks on the album.”
“Winter Is Over” shows a bit more of a country, Bob Dylan-influenced side of Hoffman’s musical range. The track opens with a sweet harmonica melody over the strumming of a twangy guitar, and leads into Hoffman singing about cherry blossoms blooming in the spring. The record’s title, “Technical Limitations” is derived from Hoffman’s dedication to create his art using only the equipment directly available to him. “From the beginning of this project, I never wanted to use drum samples I could easily download or use from a pad. I wanted to be constricted to using the given drum settings and synth tones from my casio keyboards that I’ve collected over the past couple years” says Hoffman.
On July 19th, Hoffman held a release show for the new record at the Meatlocker in Montclair, New Jersey. A live album of Hoffman’s set that night was released on the 22nd. Fans can purchase “Technical Limitations” (as well as the rest of Lavender Sky’s discography) for the name-your-price option bandcamp. Fans can also stream the new record on all major streaming platforms.
By: Nick Manduley
Columbia, South Carolina-based post-hardcore outfit When I Say Jump completely flies off the handle their debut record “Separation Anxiety.” Released back in January, the eight-track album offers a unique blend of hardcore, emo, and pop punk. The opening track “Debby Drowner” immediately throws the listener back to the mid-2000s “mall emo” days, when albums like My Chemical Romance’s “Three Cheers for Sweet Revenge” and Fall Out Boy’s “From Under The Cork Tree” topped the charts. However, it isn’t before long that the vicious screams and biting guitar riffs begin incorporating into the mix, and the result gives those aforementioned iconic albums a run for their money.
“I’ve Been Skipping the Bus, but This Day Pass Is Burning a Hole in My Pocket” showcases the band in this heavy light, as well as their witty lyrics fueled by raw emotion. “This Gun’s Just A Conversation Piece” features brutal vocals and ripping guitar work that’s reminiscent of bands such as Every Time I Die or My Chemical Romance. “Dishonest Love” is another emotional track that tackles themes of betrayal from friends with splintering guitar riffs that explode into a melodic chorus. Tracks such as “Cry, Wolf” shows a bit more of the band’s dynamic, opening with a soft droning guitar against a light synth composition, with emotionally charged vocals courtesy of vocalist Brennen Monk. This release definitely makes it clear that the boys in When I Say Jump aren’t messing around; they’re a band with a mission to make music that’s not only amazing, but sends a real message as well.
Fans can expect a new music video before the year is out, as the band has been working with director Jaiden Frost. “Separation Anxiety” can be found on major streaming platforms, and is available for the “name-your-price” option on the band’s bandcamp account. Listeners will also find the band’s heavily scream-ladened cover of Lil Nas X’s hit “Old Town Road” available for download.
By now you’ve heard about Return For Refund‘s newest release, the Lift You Up EP. After seeing the band live at their tour stop in Guelph, Canadian Beats took sometime to listen through the whole album, and write a comprehensive review! The blog commented on the band’s unique approach to recording the album live-off-the-floor, saying the resulting album is “ambitious and emotionally gripping with a supercharged hit of adrenaline!”. Canadian Beats also acknowledged how each track brings something new to the album, citing “Don’t You Say” as the most rock anthem-worthy, “Lift You Up” as most 90’s grunge reminiscent, and “My Gun” as their favorite music moment of the album. Read the article here to get their full analysis of the album!
The Fountainhead Focus recently took some time to check out our own HereComeHere‘s newest release, Chernobyl. “After starting with a much more pop-punk sound,” the blog commented, “the group (with a small lineup change) started to create something different – a more melodic, complex and even slightly darker sound.” The full article takes you track-by-track through the album, carefully studying each song. When discussing the album’s fifth track, “Sugarr”, the blog acknowledged a crucial factor about the bands progression. “Their songs have important lyrics,” noted Fountainhead, “lyrics that will stick in your head.” These lyrics, along with honing in on their sound, is what really sets this album apart from the band’s previous work. To get more analysis of the album, read the full review here!
Jess Chizuk‘s Lehigh Valley Line has officially been released and it’s getting some very high praise! In a new review of the album from Never Enough Notes, writer Laura Giles called it a “very special” listening experience and said it “feels like a live album with added intimacy.”
GigTown got featured the Go Ahead‘s track “It Is Written” on their Radio Roulette Spin. The reviewer noted that the track “demonstrates the group’s interest in playing with melodic choices that evoke the vibes of jazz and blues on the fronts of both instrumentals and vocals” and we honestly couldn’t have said it better if we tried.
“The uproar of power chords that almost seem to stomp through each chorus and an enjoyable, guitar driven instrumental bridge – complete with third and octave interval harmonizing – are the blending backbone that gives the song its opposing edge.”
Read the full review here and make sure to tune into GigTown Radio to catch the track on the airwaves!
Noting that the opening track is “a melodic masterpiece,” they went on to say it was proof that they’ll be “more than almost famous.”
“There’s a lot of bands in Texas, even without SXSW, but this is the one to look out for– especially if you liked Hawthorne Heights and Silverstein back in the day and want to listen to a more mature, updated version of that angst.”
Read the full review here!