For those of you who didn’t know, I started my career at the world-famous Z100 in New York City as part of the Elvis Duran And The Z-Morning Zoo radio show for almost six years. One of my partners in crime back in those days was the show’s stunt guy, Greg T. Known as “The Fratboy,” Greg recently reached out to me because his young cousin is actually a drummer in a really good pop punk band out of Freehold. So, as a favor to my old co-worker, I gave them a listen, and I have to be honest, they knocked my socks off—and I’m not just saying that because I’m friends with Greg! The tracks that I heard were very impressive and well-arranged. The name of the band was Batten Down The Hatches, and they had this commercial skater punk sound that was reminiscent of Blink-182, Sum 41, and New Found Glory.
Batten Down The Hatches formed in 2011 by a bunch of high school buddies. Their interesting mix of alternative and punk rock has garnered the band many interesting shows around the New Jersey region and beyond. In their short time together, they’ve even performed a stretch of shows from Massachusetts all the way down to Virginia. That is pretty impressive considering most Jersey bands who’ve been playing the scene longer never seem to leave the state. One of Batten Down The Hatches’ biggest accomplishments was performing at our very own Bamboozle Festival. I mean, who doesn’t want to play one of the biggest music festivals on the East Coast? Batten Down The Hatches consists of singer Johnny McManus, guitarists Joey DiCamillo and Adam Lotfi, bassist Bryan Little, and Greg’s cousin, drummer Kevin Sardy.
In the couple of years that they’ve been together, Batten Down The Hatches released three EPs on their own. In 2011, they released an EP called See Through This. In April 2012, they released Beginnings, and this past December, the band released Split, which was a pretty interesting idea where they “split” a five-song EP with a band from Virginia called Random Holiday. The songs that I was able to check out and really enjoy were “In Case We Haven’t Met,” “In Case You Haven’t Left,” and my favorite song, “Unique New York.” If you love that alterna-punk rock sound, you will love these guys! Check them out now at facebook.com/battendownthehatches or catch them live next Friday night (4/12) at the Holmdel Firehouse in Holmdel.
NORTH JERSEY NOTES UPDATES:
I need take a minute to congratulate my brothers from Killcode, who recently inked a record deal with CME, MegaForce and Sony (Red) Music to release their self-titled full-length. This is amazing news in a day where labels don’t seem to be taking risks on new bands. I always felt Killcode had that “it” factor ever since we shared the stage together at the now-defunct Don Hill’s five years ago, which was actually their debut performance. I’m really happy for these boys! Take a second to congratulate them at facebook.com/killcodeofficial and look for their major label debut on June 11.
The boys from Julius Seizure have released a brand new video for their song “TMSNEV.” The unique thing about the new single and video is that they have a new singer screaming these songs. He’s former Will Killmore drummer Charlie Corletta. Just a quick FYI, Julius Seizure is actually the demon child of Will Killmore, making the whole Charlie Corletta thing incestuous and awesome! The song is brutal and makes you want to kick someone’s ass! You can check it out at youtu.be/u9WgPuCXmiM. For more info on Julius Seizure, log onto facebook.com/juliusseizureband.
And finally, my boy Jay Sick recently emailed me about something cool happening this weekend. The guys from Driving Lights, The Empty Frame, Skunk Daze, Thanatotic Desire, Raging Semi and Operaktika Element will be performing at The Blue Room in Secaucus on Saturday night (4/6) and proceeds from the show will be donated to the armed forces overseas. That’s not all! Joining the bands in donating all of their proceeds from the weekend will be the New Jersey Reptile And Pet Expo at the Teaneck Armory in Teaneck on Sunday (4/7). These are some amazing events to support over the weekend, so get your asses out there and support!
That’s all for now! If your band is from North Jersey, and you want some exposure, send your press kits to Arts Weekly, c/o Tim Louie P.O. Box 1140, Little Falls, NJ 07424, or you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, where you can also let me know where you’re performing next!
Just remember….We’re all in the same boat, so every little bit of exposure counts!
Tim Louie is the Author of S**t Happens.
NJN Concert Calendar:
4/4—Division 1.1/Death Throb—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ
4/4—Hammer Fight/The Doomsday Prophecy/Blackout Stereo/Dutch Guts/Carnavarice Breath—The Blue Room, Secaucus, NJ
4/5—Negative Sky/Cashmier/Audio Machine/Cycle Of Pain—The Brighton Bar, Long Branch, NJ
4/5—Midnight Mob—Corky’s Tavern, Wilmington, DE
4/5—Shat/Gunfire-N-Sodomy—The Blue Room, Secaucus, NJ
4/6—Sexy Heroes/Mindfire/Brand Of Juliez/Trnzprnt/Earthbound—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ
4/6—Borgo Pass—Vibe Lounge, Rockville, Center, NY
4/6—Kore Rozzik/Bobaflex—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ
4/6—Driving Lights/The Empty Frame/Skunk Daze/Thanatotic Desire/Raging Semi/Operaktika Element—The Blue Room, Secaucus, NJ
4/7—Faction Down/Downlow NYHC/New Faith/Caught In A Trap/Bones/96/Silence = Death/InDisguise/Blackout Stereo —Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ
4/7—A Clever Con—Encore Event Center, Freehold, NJ
4/9—The Hollow—The Hard Rock, NYC
4/11—Steve Brown and Terry Farley—Thatcher McGhee’s, Denville, NJ
4/12—Cycle Of Pain/Black Water Rising/Sekond Skyn/BlackOcean—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ
4/12—Batten Down the Hatches—Holmdel Firehouse, Holmdel, NJ
4/12—Kosmic Daydream—Mexicali Live, Teaneck, NJ
4/13—Meatplow—Le Grand Fromage, Atlantic City, NJ
4/13—Sexy heroes/Brand Of Julez/Earthbound/Trnzprnt/Mindfire—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ
4/13—Don Dokken/Trimm—Crossroads, Garwood, NJ
4/13—Crash Diet/PUi/Crucified Barbara/Wildstreet/Nasty Habit/Snakeskin Whiskey—The Gramercy Theatre, NYC
4/18—Suffer Your Fate/Rebel Ink—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ
4/19—Batten Down The Hatches—Ramapo College, Ramapo, NJ
4/19—BoundAlive/Bad Dog Bad—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ
4/20—Steve Brown and the Fallout—The Grasshopper Too, Wayne, NJ
4/20—Johnny Sidedshow and The Feejee Mermaids/The Unknown/Halfwitted Dogs/Looney Tunes—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ
4/23—Pheroze—Bowery Electric, NYC
4/26—End Of An Era—The Brighton Bar, Long Branch, NJ