North Jersey Notes: Diesel America, Tarpit Boogie, Mercury Morning and More!

One band that I keep hearing about coming out of the NYC music scene is this hard rock band Diesel America, and what I’ve heard so far is all positive. After hearing so much about them, I decided to give them a quick listen on their ReverbNation page,, where I got to hear the songs “Leave Your Mark,” “First Day” and a cover of the Misfits classic, “Where Eagles Dare,” which I have to admit was pretty badass. I mean, these guys are just a flat-out hard rock band with no sugar-coating whatsoever.

In less than a year, Diesel America have made their mark on the local NYC music scene by developing a signature sound and combining it with an explosive stage presence, which helped create a following for themselves that typically takes most bands on the scene many years to develop. Diesel America’s momentum even caught the ear of NYC rock royalty and Life Of Agony, Stereomud and Carnivore guitarist Joey Z, who offered his services in producing the band’s debut effort, Leave Your Mark. Their diversity in influences really helped set them apart from other bands that are playing hard rock right now. For instance, on songs like “First Day,” you might hear a heavy punk influence, while on songs like “ Backbone” and “Symptom,” you’ll notice more of an anthemic rock influence, but on “Do What I Want To,” you’ll hear more blues. Regardless, it really makes Diesel America unpredictable musically. The band is made up of singer Vic Russo, guitarist Kevin Galligan, bassist Frank Cherena and drummer Rob Sonnenberg.

Diesel America feel that they’re the type of band who fans will be arguing in a few years that you knew them when? Don’t all bands feel that way, though? Only the best survive! This NYC original is definitely one that should not be missed on a live performance level. You can catch them live at the new NYC rock club Slake this Friday night (4/18) when they celebrate the release of their debut CD, Leave Your Mark, with Brand Of Julez, The Dark Riders and Full Molder. If you can’t make the show, check out Diesel America at


My bro Chris Hawkins of the band Tarpit Boogie recently reached out to me because Tarpit Boogie are in the market for a new singer. If you’re into that “doom” type of rock and can sing that style, you need to get in touch with Chris right away, as gigs continue to line up. Chris said that he hopes it doesn’t take two years to find a singer again. If you’re ready to sing the “doom,” check out Tarpit Boogie at to see if you’re the right fit and then contact the band right on that page if you are.

Speaking of some old chums that I went to high school with, my old Smoke Star singer Ivo is looking for a new drummer for his band Mercury Morning. He said that his band is currently mixing their upcoming four-song EP, so their prospective drummer will have his work cut out for him or her. If you have the chops to play some good alt rock, log onto to give the band a listen or to just contact them.

And finally, my new buds from South Jersey’s Bone Devil have released their new self-titled full-length CD. From what I’ve heard so far, the CD rocks. I’ve played with these guys a few times and they are a rocking trio that is fun to watch. Songs like “Set Me Free,” “Hooked On You” and “Fall” will earn these guys fans even beyond the southern region of the Dirty Jersey. Let’s try to get these guys up north soon. Check them out now at

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:

4/16—Seas Of Wake/All That Remains/Darkest Hour/Wilson—Starland Ballroom, Sayreville, NJ

4/17—Gothic Knights/Queensryche—Bergen PAC, Englewood, NJ

4/18—Steve Brown—Willie McBride’s, Branchburg, NJ

4/18—Freak Of The Day/Fear The Dawn—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

4/18—Diesel America/Brand Of Julez/The Dark Riders/Full Molder—Slake, NYC

4/18—The Independents—The Brighton Bar, Long Branch, NJ

4/19—The Enemy Is You/Shadows Of Dawn/Lower The Veil/Ashes Of Your Enemy—Court Tavern, New Brunswick, NJ

4/19—The Battery Electric/Kiirstin Marilyn/Purple Suns/East Side Riffs—The Brighton Bar, Long Branch, NJ

4/20—The Independents/Monster Rat/Danse dE Sade/True Revolution—Tenth Street Live, Kenilworth, NJ

4/20—Eastbourne/UFOTOFU/Stranger Dangers/The Mischief Kids—The Brighton Bar, Long Branch, NJ

4/21—Forevermore/The Ongoing Concept/Sycamour/My Enemies And I—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

4/24—Steve Brown and Terry Farley—Thatcher McGhee’s, Pompton Lakes, NJ

4/24—Blameshift—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

4/25—Kucklebone/Flowers To Flames/Sebastian Bach—Starland Ballroom, Sayreville, NJ

4/25—Don Jamieson—The Brighton Bar, Long Branch, NJ

4/25—New Theory/Reach/Revenir/Answer Infinity/Sundown Conspiracy/Burning Red Sun—Stanhope House, Stanhope, NJ

4/26—Civic/Gazelle—Crossroads, Garwood, NJ

4/30—Battlecross/Beyond Dishonor/Julius Seizure/Burial Mound—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

4/30—J.Rad/Halo To Havoc/Cracked Alice/Saliva—Santos Party House, NYC