North Jersey Notes: The Blessing Of This Curse, Sekond Skyn, Voodoo Terror Tribe and More!

Working for a concert promoter, you come across some amazing bands on the national level and the local level. A band from Fair Lawn, NJ came across my plate because we had them opening for Veil Of Maya at Reverb in Reading, PA a couple of weeks ago. When I realized they were from Fair Lawn, I became interested instantly because it was the neighboring town from where I grew up. So, I decided to give them a listen. The name of the band is The Blessing Of This Curse and these guys are heavy! I mean I love heavy, but these guys are really heavy! They’re one of those metal bands who are technically sound musically and then come the vocals, where you go, “How can that guy even speak after he sings this stuff?” The songs that I listened to—“Blacklist,” “Nothing More, Always Less” and my favorite track “Can You Hear Me Screaming?”—off of the band’s latest EP, Separate Yourself, scared me, but enlightened me. They actually reminded me of another local band from the same area that no longer exists, With Daggers Drawn.

The Blessing Of This Curse is a quintet based out of Fair Lawn, NJ. According to their bio, they formed around 2011, but released their first EP, I’ve Seen Hell, in 2012. In 2013, the band would release a single called “Persistence,” which started to garner the band some attention on the local metal scene. The boys really made their presence known in February of 2013 when they competed in a battle of the bands for a spot on a major metal festival in New York City. The band took a gamble competing in this competition because this battle of the bands would mark the band’s first show ever. Much to their surprise, The Blessing Of This Curse managed to move on to the second round of the competition and actually ended up placing fourth place out of 11 bands in the competition. The group was not discouraged from the loss and looked at the event as a “foot in the door” for many more shows to come, like opening for bands like Whitechapel, Senses Fail, Like Moths To Flames, Within The Ruins, Impending Doom, My Heart To Fear, Abandon All Ships, and Ice Nine Kills. That’s not a bad list of bands to add to your resume. The Blessing Of This Curse is made up of singer Ethan Kennedy, guitarist Joey Galletta Jr., bassist Blake Van Curen, keyboardist Branton Shpilevsky, and drummer Jake Fletcher.

The Blessing Of This Curse’s sophomore EP, Separate Yourself, is available now on iTunes, Bandcamp, Spotify and wherever you get your music digitally. Their plan is to head back into the studio this summer to record EP number three. One of The Blessing Of This Curse’s founding members, Nick Magarelli, is now serving our country as part of the U.S. Navy, and they say that Nick always has a place in the band once he returns home. Absolutely awesome! Check out The Blessing Of This Curse now at, where you can also find out the band’s next live dates.



I just finished watching the brand new music video from my bros in Sekond Skyn for their song “Flood” off of their latest EP, Quicksand. It was fantastic and deep to watch. “Flood” was actually one of my favorite songs on the Quicksand EP, so this was a great choice for a music video. The visual of the couple getting drunk and fighting culminating in a surprise ending really exhibited the dark side of the song. This is a great music video with a classic feel to when MTV used to play music videos. Check out at the video at and for more on my bros from Sekond Skyn, visit

My buds from Voodoo Terror Tribe, or VTT as they like to be called now, spent their Memorial Day weekend in Virginia filming their new music video for their upcoming single, “City Of Sixes,” which will be featured on the band’s upcoming CD. For more on new music and videos from Voodoo Terror Tribe, visit or catch the boys live this Sunday (6/14) at The Brighton Bar in Long Branch, NJ.

And finally, my brothers from Rahway have announced they have a new singer fronting the band. His name is Nick Hade from Monmouth County. Nick started making a name for himself on the Jersey music scene singing for the bands Cylent Knights, Last Breath Creation and Still Phase. With a brand new singer, comes a brand new studio EP from the Rahway boys, which is set to be released later this month. Though they released their full-length CD Snitches Get Stitches back in 2007 along with a bunch of singles in the years to follow, this will be the first studio EP from Rahway since the band formed in 2000. Oh, yeah! If you catch Rahway live in any of their upcoming shows, you might recognize the bass player. Just sayin’! For more info on Rahway, visit, where you can also find out where the band is playing next.

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:

6/12—Deaf Rhino/Summit/Devon Goods—Mexicali Live, Teaneck, NJ

6/12—Circle of Insanity—Tenth Street Live, Kenilworth, NJ

6/12—Killcode/Four By Fate—The Chance Theater, Poughkeepsie, NY

6/13—90 mph/Mercury Morning/Starbolt 9/The Brats—The Clash Bar, Clifton, NJ

6/14—THE DREAMING/Die So Fluid/Voodoo Terror Tribe/Aurin/Salems Outlaws/My Rising Fall—The Brighton Bar, Long Branch, NJ

6/16—OTEP/The Reaktion/Common Wealth/Horseman 5/Throat—The Brighton Bar, Long Branch, NJ

6/17—Steve Bello Band/Fragile Sky/Lynch Mob—Mexicali Live, Teaneck, NJ

6/19—Answer Infinity—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

6/20—ORBYNOT (CD Release)/ Rivera Bomma/Lyken21/Fever Vein/Adherence—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

6/20—Steve Bello Band—Popcorn Park, Forked River, NJ

6/20—The Blessing Of This Curse—Gregapalooza Music Festival, Clementon, NJ

6/21—Ryan Chiarella and The New Breed—Harry’s Lobster House, Sea Bright, NJ

6/24—McCalister/Dairy Farmers/Honor Among Thieves/Flammable Animals/The Bunks—Mexicali Live, Teaneck, NJ

6/25—Dread/Know Your Enemy—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

6/26—The Living Deads/Crash Gordon & Debra Dynamite—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

6/27—ANAKA/Brand of Julez/Proxima Control/Tempest City/Unveiled—The Gramercy Theatre, NYC

6/27—Dying Eyes Of Sloth/Whiplash/Blood Feast/Psychoprism/Scars Of Envy/Threatpoint/Apathy/Beyond Fallen/Paralysis/Xero Gravity/Dead City Crown—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

7/1—Vanessa Milanesi and Val Vallese/Brothers and Sisters/Kevin Hill Organ Trio/Shakey Tables—Mexicali Live, Teaneck, NJ

7/8—Folding The Pages/Answer Infinity/Strive/The Clocktown Giants/Low Roads Ghost—Mexicali Live, Teaneck, NJ

7/10—Scars of Envy/36 Crazyfists/The Defiled/First Decree/In This Moment—Starland Ballroom, Sayreville, NJ

7/11—Bubba Grouch/The Gripes/FLAMMABLE ANIMALS/THE BUNKS/MOTHER PSYCHOSIS—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

7/12—Magus Beast/Korotory/Xenophile/BOOTLEGGER/Sanitarius/Psychoprism/ Invaders/Flotsam and Jetsam/Dead By Wednesday—Blackthorn 51, Elmhurst, NY