North Jersey Notes: James Arlowe And The Ruffian Circus And More!


I recently received an email asking me to give a listen to James Arlowe And The Ruffian Circus from Freehold, NJ. I did give them a listen and I have to say that these guys are pretty amazing. James Arlowe And The Ruffian Circus is just pure rock ’n’ roll. I can’t even put them into a sub genre. They just rock! I logged onto the band’s website,, to hear songs like the groovy “Letters To Caroline,” the rocking “Into The Tempest,” “Oh White Devil” and, my favorite track, “Bethesda.” Normally, this is not the type of music that I would listen to but I can’t seem to turn it off. These guys are that good!

James Arlowe And The Ruffian Circus is the result of what happens when you mix some of the greatest rock music of all time into one band. In their songwriting, you will hear influences like Jersey legend Bruce Springsteen, The Beatles, Bob Dylan, Tom Petty And The Heartbreakers and Johnny Cash with a modern flair that is reminiscent to Kings of Leon meets The Black Keys. Singer James Arlowe has certainly learned from some of the best. You see, he used to work at Rough Magic Studios in Brooklyn, NY. James had the opportunity to work with bands like American Babies, Soulive, MGMT, Ingrid Michaelson and Benevento-Russo Duo, just to name a few, and he absorbed much of their musical expertise.

Joining Arlowe as The Ruffian Circus is guitarist James Fox, keyboardist and accordion player Mark Pasquarello, bassist Mike Lynn and drummer Andrew Oliva. This band is a must see! Especially, if their music is any indication of what their live show could be. You can find out where James Arlowe And The Ruffian Circus is playing next by logging onto


Congrats go out to the boys from prog rock trio Audio Insight, out of Woodbridge, NJ. After four months of competing against more than 400 bands in The Break Contest, Audio Insight was awarded a slot on this weekend’s gigantic Bamboozle Festival down at the New Meadowlands Sports Complex in East Rutherford, NJ. Winning this coveted slot allows Audio Insight to brag that they were on the same bill as some of music’s giants like 30 Seconds To Mars, Taking Back Sunday, Lil Wayne and Motley Crue. Earlier this year, Audio Insight was also recognized as one of the Top Unsigned Acts of the year right here in The Aquarian. For more info on Audio Insight, log onto and give these guys a listen.

I just got a text from Black Water Rising drummer Mikey “Dreads” Meselsohn and he told me that the band won’t be playing any live shows anytime soon. It turns out, they’re in the studio working on their next CD, which has no title yet, but Mike did tell me that he and the boys from Black Water Rising will be filming a video for their song “No Halos” off of their debut self-titled CD, which also featured their monster hit “Brother Go On.” To keep yourself updated with Black Water Rising, log onto

And finally, speaking of in the studio, I recently hung out with my brother and Piston Driven drummer Scotty O, when we went down to the Eddie Trunk book release party together, and we talked about his band for a minute. Scotty told me that he and the boys have been working their tails off in the studio recording their new still untitled CD. Some of the tracks that you might hear on the upcoming disc include “Step Outside,” “Ride of Your Life” and “Cut the Cord.” You can also catch Scotty O pulling double duty with the cover band Famous Monsters, which also features members from Infernophonic, Anger, Fistacuffs and Shat. For more info on Piston Driven, log onto

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, 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:

4/27—Steve Brown—The Copper Bottom, Florida, NY

4/28—Steve Brown—The Firehouse Eatery, Rahway, NJ

4/29—Charetta—Ace of Clubs, NYC

4/29—Trixter/9 Circles/Jaded Past/100 to One—Murphy’s Third Rail, Dover, NJ

4/29—Bamboozle Festival—New Meadowlands Sports Complex, East Rutherford, NJ

4/29—James Arlowe And The Ruffian Circus—The Saint, Asbury Park, NJ

4/30—Bamboozle Festival—New Meadowlands Sports Complex, East Rutherford, NJ

5/1—Bamboozle Festival—New Meadowlands Sports Complex, East Rutherford, NJ

5/5—ZO2/UFO—Club Loaded, Farmingdale, NY

5/6—ZO2/Sweet Cyanide/Wildstreet/Jesse Blaze Snyder—Gramercy Theater, NYC

5/7—Moth Eater—The Trash Bar, Brooklyn, NY

5/7—Full Moon Fever—Rattlesnake Ranch Café, Denville, NJ

5/7—James Arlowe And The Ruffian Circus—Asbury Park VFW, Asbury Park, NJ

5/9—A Clean Getaway—Angels and Kings, NYC

5/14—The Plot Thickens—The Clash Bar, Clifton, NJ