North Jersey Notes: Black Angel Down, Apostrophes, The Compulsions and More!

Yes, I know that this column is called North Jersey Notes and this week’s act is from Maryland, but my band, BlackOcean, just played a show with these strapping young lads down at The Saint for Lower The Veil’s CD release party, and I thought they were absolutely awesome! The name of the band was Black Angel Down, and like I said, they are from Baltimore, MD. Their remake of Dru Hill’s classic “How Deep Is Your Love” is simply amazing! Singers Nokio and Tao add a different harmonic dynamic to your typical hard rock group and almost give the songs “Pretty Face” and “Wind” more of an R&B meets hard rock and heavy metal feel. For some silly reason, it just seems to work! Hard rock is about being bluesy and tough, and Black Angel Down accomplish that without even batting an eyelash!

According to their bio, Black Angel Down is the remnants of a few of Baltimore’s more popular rock bands who had a knack of fusing together multiple genres into a union that incorporated rock, soul and R&B. The band is fronted by a guy named Nokio, who some might remember as the N-Tity of legendary multi-platinum R&B group, Dru Hill. Black Angel Down have used their in-your-face, hard-hitting grooves and soulful melodic harmonies to win over fans even beyond their home of Baltimore, playing to sold-out crowds across the country. They were even invited by my bud Gary Jay from NJ’s Land Shark Promotions to perform on his promotions stage at South By Southwest this year! Nokio is supported by fellow vocalist Tao, guitarists Rod and Ralphie, bassist Kevin, and a drummer named Dan. Yes, they all only have first names like me.

Black Angel Down’s live performance was also as energetic as the rest of us Jersey bands on this evening. These guys were fun to watch and I would love to see these guys playing our neck of the woods again soon! They currently have a self-titled eight-song CD up on iTunes for download. Check these guys out! You won’t be let down! Log onto



My boys from Apostrophes recently emailed me a copy of their debut six-song EP, and trust me, this is something you really need to listen to. If you’re a fan of Tool and Alice In Chains, you will love these guys! I wish I found singer Paco Paz myself years ago to sing for my band! Notable songs that you need to listen to include “Brothers,” “Left Behind” and “On My Own.” You can stream the whole EP right now at

My bros from New York City’s The Compulsions have been invited to perform as special guests on New Year’s Eve with Jim Jones Revue at the Bowery Electric in NYC. Looking for something to do to ring in 2014? Now’s your chance to jump on and purchase tickets for what is set to be a sold-out rock ‘n’ roll New Year’s Eve to remember! For more details, log onto

And finally, my new buds, Pralaya, featuring one of my favorite drummers on the scene, Greg Telfeian from With Daggers Drawn, just released their new track “Cycle” on all social media and websites. The song is brilliant! That’s all I can say! You need to see these guys live to get the full experience! Check them out at Fontana’s in NYC this Saturday night (11/23) with Shift and Goodbye Tiger. For more info on Pralaya, 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:

11/21—Triple Threat/Champagne Black/The Battery Electric—The Brighton Bar, Long Branch, NJ

11/22—A Clever Con—North Centerville Firehouse, Hazlet, NJ

11/22—Steve Brown and The Fallout—Beachcomber, Seaside Heights, NJ

11/23—Knucklebone—Starland Ballroom, Sayreville, NJ

11/23—Flatus/The Wait/The Bullys/Lakeside Drive/Disposable—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

11/23—Words Never Spoken/Xero Gravity/Gathering After Ashes/Valence/Ixion Lux/Station/Sinners—The Harp-N-Bard, Clifton, NJ

11/23—Pralaya/Shift/Goodbye Tiger—Fontana’s, NYC

11/24—Fates Warning/Halcyon Way/Fever Vein/Psychoprism/Dark Empire/Knollwood—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

11/27—Marc Rizzo—The Blue Room, Secaucus, NJ

11/27—Steve Brown and The Fallout—Elm Street Grill, Oakland, NJ

11/29—Ten Feet From Murder/E-Town Concrete/40 Below Summer/Bane/Nora/Judge The Fallen—Starland Ballroom, Sayreville, NJ

11/30—Cyperna/Stagger—Championship Sports Bar and Grill, Trenton, NJ

11/30—Ted Poley—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

11/30—Atom Strange “CD Release Party”—Mercury Lounge, NYC

12/3—Madysin Hatter—Arlene’s Grocery, NYC

12/4—John Oliva—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

12/7—Tarpit Boogie—Clash Bar, Clifton, NJ

12/7—Eye Ra Haze—The Highline Ballroom, NYC

12/8—Picture Perfect/Yes Virgina—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

12/11—Gemini Syndrome/Mindset Evolution/Starset—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

12/12—The Wizards Of Winter—Union County Performing Arts Center, Rahway, NJ

12/13—SOiL—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

12/13—Charetta/Statik Silence/New Day Dawn/The Latanza Heist/Sinsanity/Vextion—Tenth Street Live, Kenilworth, NJ

12/13—Panzie*/Streetlight Circus—Even Flow Bar and Grill, Bay Shore, NY

12/14—Midnight Mob—The Brighton Bar, Long Branch, NJ

12/14—Brand Of Julez/Ghosts Of Eden/SomeonElse/North America/Fear Report/Srotakin IV—The Studio at Webster Hall, NYC

12/14—“That Metal Show X-Mas Party”—Seven Witches/Grind Axis/ Thanatonic Desire/Madame Mayhem/Jaded Past—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

12/15—Statik Silence/Atomic Dog/Murder Smile—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

12/19—Cycle Of Pain/Black Water Rising/Lower The Veil/Gaggle Of Cocks—The Legendary Dobbs, Philadelphia, PA

12/20—Cycle Of Pain “CD Release Party”—Sullivan Hall, NYC

12/21—Audio Empire/BoundAlive/Lethal Affection/Jolly/Ascending from Ashes/Empire Fallen/Brand of Julez—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

12/21—The Dirty Pearls—Irving Plaza, NYC