Yes, this is my second New York City band in as many weeks, but they seem to be the only music scene sending me good music these days. I haven’t really heard much from the North Jersey area that has really tickled my fancy lately. Anyway, I was contacted on Facebook by a girl who is managing this NYC hard rock band called Mordus. She’s read North Jersey Notes a few times and felt that these guys were right up my alley—plus she was trying to get the word out in North Jersey about the band since they recently played at Dingbatz in Clifton. And they really weren’t bad! I felt that they still had some work ahead of them as far as songwriting, but the tunes weren’t too shabby. I was able to hear tracks like “Beside Me,” “The Box,” and my favorite track, the mellower “Lost And Found.” Singer Taber Licea had a unique tone to his voice. I have to say that they were definitely interesting!

According to their ReverbNation profile, they base themselves out of Manhattan and are trying to revitalize the NY/NJ music scene with their brand of prog rock. Their lyrics are said to “relate to everyday living and life experiences,” but isn’t that what all bands write about? It doesn’t sound like Mordus is really reinventing the wheel! The boys of Mordus like to label bands like the Foo Fighters, Tool, Disturbed, Soundgarden, Metallica, and Godsmack as major influences to the way they write their music, and you can definitely hear those influences in these songs. Joining Licea in Mordus is guitarist Allen Alexander, bassist David Leatherwood, and drummer Carlo Bonavita.

The boys in Mordus seem to have some sort of momentum going at the moment. They’ve been doing shows for Gotham Rocks, recently branched out to Jersey to play Dingbatz, and some company called Blackwing literally took the band under their wing! So it looks like 2012 is off to a good start for the guys from NYC. They currently have their 2008 release, The Bitten, available for download on CD Baby. Check out Mordus now on mordusmusic.com.

NORTH JERSEY NOTES UPDATES:

My bro Rob Ferreira from the band Dead Fish Handshake just sent me a copy of the band’s new CD, The Sixes, and I have to say, it’s pretty damn good! The Sixes was produced by Sevendust guitarist Clint Lowery up at Architekt Music in Butler, NJ. Singer Matt Paul sounds amazing on the opening single, “Turning A Blind Eye.” He sounds equally amazing on “E-Motionless” and “Lifespan” too. The music and vocals complement each other very well on this CD. The boys from Dead Fish Handshake will be celebrating their release of The Sixes with a party at Architekt this Saturday night (6/2). Download “Turn A Blind Eye” now on iTunes and log onto deadfishhandshake.com for details on how to get your copy of The Sixes.

Speaking of new music, my boys Set It Free will be releasing their first full-length CD, Don’t Stand Alone, in the coming months. The CD will feature the title track, as well as other songs like “Lungs Bleed,” “Pull You Under,” “When Dreams Fade Away,” and “Count The Blessings.” Don’t Stand Alone had some big names attached to it too. It was co-produced by Trapt bassist Peter Charell and mastered by the masterful Alan Douches. Find out when Set It Free plans to set their new CD free by logging onto facebook.com/setitfree.

And finally, my bro Matt Burns and his band LadyKiller will be opening for Eye Empire at Seven Days Bar And Grill in Union Beach, NJ, on June 8. Eye Empire features Clint Lowery’s brother, Corey, on bass. Damn, that’s the second time that I mentioned Clint in my column this week! He owes me a drink! Anyway, Matt tells me at the end of the night there will be midget bowling! Now, anyone who knows me knows that that is no way to get me to go anywhere. Let’s just leave it at that! Anyway, this is going to be a killer show! Tickets are available for $10 at Seven Days Bar And Grill. Good luck with that midget bowling, Matt!

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 tim@theaquarian.com, 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:

5/31—Steve Brown—Pellegrino’s, North Haledon, NJ

6/1—Ten Foot Tall—Triumph Brewing Company, Princeton, NJ

6/1—Knott Rite and Friends/Liquid Orange—7 Days Bar And Grill, Union Beach, NJ

6/1—Steve Brown and the Fallout—Willie McBrides II, Branchburgh, NJ

6/1—Spread Eagle—The Chance, Poughkeepsie, NY

6/2—InDisguise/Fever Vein/BoundAlive—The Cup Complex, Linden, NJ

6/2—Steve Brown and the Fallout—Grasshopper Too, Wayne, NJ

6/2—Dead Fish Handshake (The Sixes CD Release Party)—Architekt Music, Butler, NJ

6/3—Kosmic Daydream—Tenth Street Live, Kenilworth, NJ

6/7—Eye Empire/Mother/Atom Strange/Scarlet Carson—Sullivan Hall, NYC

6/7—Shadowplay—G Lounge, Philadelphia, PA

6/7—Steve Brown Acoustic Trio—Thatcher McGees, Pompton Lakes, NJ

6/8—Darrow Chemical Co./Dead N Wasted/Stillborn Monster Babies—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

6/8—Eye Empire/LadyKiller—7 Days Bar and Grill, Union Beach, NJ

6/8—Ghosts Of Eden/Charetta—The Brighton Bar, Long Beach , NJ

6/9—Ten Foot Tall—John and Peter’s, New Hope, PA

6/9—Division 1.1—Roxy N Duke, Dunellen, NJ

6/9—Summer Jam Festival—Raceway Park, Englishtown, NJ

6/13—Shattered Realm/Death Before Dishonor—7 Days Bar and Grill, Union Beach, NJ

6/15—Richie Scarlet—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

6/16—Kosmic Daydream/The Black 100s—Goodbye Blue Monday, Brooklyn, NY

6/16—Fate Strikes Twice/Charetta/Killcode—The Gramercy Theater, NYC

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