R.I.P. Chris Cornell (1964-2017)

R.I.P. Chris Cornell (1964-2017)

Waking up last Thursday morning, May 18, 2017, to the news of Chris Cornell’s passing, was so shocking that it didn’t feel real. It was inconceivable. This was someone who had apparently kicked addiction to the curb more than a decade ago, was in the midst of the first tour with Soundgarden in several years, and was one of the last living legendary singers from the Seattle grunge era that’s been plagued by premature deaths.

And just like that, hours after taking the stage at the Fox Theatre in Detroit, Michigan, the Soundgarden/Audioslave/Temple of the Dog frontman was gone. He was 52. As of this writing, it appears to be suicide by hanging.

Cornell influenced so many of our lives with what feels like hundreds upon hundreds of songs through his numerous bands and also his solo work. The two-time Grammy Award winner (for Best Metal Performance with “Spoonman” and Best Hard Rock Performance with “Black Hole Sun”) and Golden Globe nominee (for Best Original Song with “The Keeper” from Machine Gun Preacher) was …

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Wave Of Rejuvenation: Paz Lenchantin Breathes New Life Into The Pixies

Wave Of Rejuvenation: Paz Lenchantin Breathes New Life Into The Pixies

L-R: Paz Lenchantin, Black Francis, David Lovering, Joey Santiago

When original bassist Kim Deal left the Pixies in 2013, many fans wondered if it would spell the end of the line for the group.

But a few years after Deal’s departure, the Pixies appear to be enjoying a new lease on life.

The 2016 album Head Carrier ended up on many critics’ year-end top ten lists, and the band continues to play sold-out shows across the globe.

There’s no doubt much of the credit should go to Paz Lenchantin, who was tapped to join the Pixies as a touring bassist in January 2014, following the group’s blink-and-you-missed-it stint with Kim Shattuck.

Lenchantin has brought renewed energy to the fold, and after several years of live gigs, she was made an official band member last July by singer/guitarist Black Francis (real name: Charles Thompson), drummer David Lovering and guitarist Joey Santiago.

Though she previously did time with A Perfect Circle, Zwan, and The Entrance Band, and had appeared on records by Queens of the Stone Age, …

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2017 Summer Concert Guide

Click photos to enlarge.


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Shoreworld: The Vansaders – No Matter What

Shoreworld: The Vansaders – No Matter What

Doug Zambon and the boys from The Vansaders have been tearing up the scene and generating much interest with their repertoire of punk-tinged music for a while now. No Matter What is their fourth studio effort since releasing Stuck In New York City back in 2014. When it comes to describing their sound and style, the band says it best with their short bio:

“The Vansaders seem poised to launch closer to the top of Asbury Park’s music scene, touting a banner mix of punk, rock, and folk that both reflects well upon and contrasts with what’s going in the state of music today. The band’s unassuming brand of drive is refreshing in an industry that can sometimes take itself too seriously. Everything about this group represents New Jersey’s rekindled flame, and their sound feels like a more accessible bridge to some more esoteric genres. If you need an entrance point to what’s going on in the US music scene, The Vansaders are a worthy place to start.”

I would have to agree pretty much …

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Everynight Charley’s Manhattan Beat: Black Lips, Over The Rhine, Timothy B. Schmit, and More

Everynight Charley’s Manhattan Beat: Black Lips, Over The Rhine, Timothy B. Schmit, and More

Black Lips/Webster Hall’s Grand Ballroom/May 5, 2017

In Dunwoody, Georgia, guitarist Cole Alexander and bassist Jared Swilley reportedly were expelled from high school during their senior year because they were regarded as a “subculture danger.” In 1999, they left a band called the Renegades and formed Black Lips. Alexander and Swilley were known for their crude antics in school and these pranks extended into their live shows. In the beginning, they tossed lit firecrackers into the audience; nowadays these pranks can include nudity, urination, fire, vomiting, and the destruction of musical instruments. Black Lips presently consists of Alexander, Swilley, guitarist Jack Hines, saxophonist Zumi Rosow and drummer Oakley Munson. The band released its eighth studio album, the first in three years, Satan’s graffiti or God’s art?, on May 5, 2017.

Many of the band’s reviews concentrate on the band’s onstage antics more than the music. It cannot be helped. At Webster Hall’s Grand Ballroom, the Black Lips played riveting garage rock that pummeled much like a Diarrhea Planet concert. Black Lips has taken 1960s-style …

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Sting @ Hammerstein Ballroom


Hammerstein Ballroom

MANHATTAN, NY—Sting’s backup band provided the edgy muscle to the man’s catalog taking on pop, punk, reggae, worldbeat and rock into a two-hour set that focused on his latest album, 57th And 9th, for the final show of his tour. Playing to the faithful who endured the blizzard of 2017, Sting and his band, including members of The Last Bandoleros, delivered the goods like a well-oiled machine as they added some spicy Tex-Mex to the man’s pop overtures.

Looking like a gym rat and sporting a black tee, pants and boots that complemented his minimalistic finger style playing on …

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The Birthday Massacre: Under Your Spell

The Birthday Massacre

Under Your Spell

Metropolis Records

This 11-track CD represents The Birthday Massacre’s seventh full-length album, and explores the moody ambiguities of romantic relationships. Chibi’s delicate, almost fragile vocals are bracketed between thunderous guitar and drum crashes in The Birthday Massacre’s signature style. Minor key melodies captivate the listener and emphasize the introspective and poetic narratives …

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