My old bud Andrew Padilla from Dispute To Flames and Avenida recently reached out to me to give his new band a listen. The name of the band is Close The Circle and they’re pretty damn good! Andrew, who is still a North Jersey guy, is the singer and he sounds amazing on the songs I listened to off of the band’s EP, ElliPse. He had this Chester Bennington feel, but the songs sounded nothing like Linkin Park. In fact, Close The Circle would make a great pairing with Ronin on a local level. Their songwriting and music is very similar. Andrew and my brother and Ronin singer David Marin have similar singing styles. I would personally love to see that bill at a venue nearby.

Close The Circle is a hard rock band based out of Brooklyn, even though singer Andrew Padilla and bassist Tom Paddack are from North Jersey. According to their bio, the band was formed back in 2014. Through implosions of their former projects, the five musicians who call themselves Close The Circle finally convened and called themselves a band after many jam sessions together. Joining Andrew and Tom in Close The Circle are drummer Andrey Golushko, guitarist Matthew Edelman, and keyboardist Ivan Shakhoff. Together, they create music influences by bands like Chevelle, Deftones, Linkin Park, and Tool. While working in a previous project, Andrey and Matt had an opportunity to work with Living Colour bassist Muzz Skillings to perform a gig at New York’s Gramercy Theatre.

In 2015, Close The Circle won The Break Contest, which earned them an opportunity to perform at the Skate and Surf Festival in Asbury Park. Close The Circle recently released their debut EP, ElliPse, which features the songs “Metal East,” “Walk In The Park” and my favorite tracks “Sages” and “Intensify.” These guys have something going on musically. The songs are well-written and they’re supported by strong vocals from Andrew Padilla. Find out where Close The Circle are paying next or find out more about them at




My bro Steve Bello, the guitar whiz who recently released his latest CD, Layers Of Time, has landed his first gig of 2016 to promote that very CD. He’ll be opening for the legendary Joe Lynn Turner from Rainbow, Deep Purple and Yngwie Malmsteen over at Mexicali Live in Teaneck, NJ on Feb. 26. Steve told me, “I am achieving yet another childhood dream come true. I wanted to open for Rainbow as a kid, so this comes close.” I’m just glad to see guys I came up on the scene still accomplishing childhood dreams! Catch Steve Bello live as a special guest of Joe Lynn Turner at Mexicali Live on Feb. 26. For more info, visit

The local supergroup The Paragon Image finally released their debut single, “Bridges Burn,” and it is awesome! I hit up my bass brother Sean Patrick Murray from The Paragon Image about how much I enjoyed the song and he sent me two more tracks for my listening enjoyment. I got to listen to “The Law Of Karma” and “The Anchor,” and I will tell you that these songs are delicious! I almost forget that Dead Fish Handshake singer Matthew Paul is the singer on this stuff. The music and vocals are THAT good! You need to keep those ears peeled for this band! For more info on The Paragon Image, visit

And finally, my Astorian brothers, Dave Alexander and Tony Ortiz, whom I’ve known since their days with Dead Letter Box down the hall from my band Smoke Star, have a new band up and running called Paxia. I haven’t heard a peep out of these two since they parted ways with their last band A Lesson In Violence. I only heard one song called “Change Me” and so far it’s a step in a totally different direction for these two musically, but the step I always felt they belonged in. The song is awesome and I can’t wait to hear more! For more on Paxia, visit

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:

2/3—Jersey Campfire Productions Presents: Vextion/Roulette/Vengents/Iron Front—The Brighton Bar, Long Branch, NJ

2/4—Raftree/Don’t Tell Maggie—Mexicali Live, Teaneck, NJ

2/5—THE MENZINGERS/The Scandals/Thin Lips—Crossroads, Garwood, NJ

2/5—After the Burn/Suspect/Executors/Suicide Crisis—The Brighton Bar, Long Beach, NJ

2/6—Zenergy Entertainment Presents: Cycle of Pain/Negative Sky/Common Wealth/Give Them Rope/Brand Of Juelz/Legacy—Starland Ballroom, Sayreville, NJ

2/6—The F-Bombers/Gravity Well/The Sacred/Pure Thirteen—The Brighton Bar, Long Branch, NJ

2/6—THE MENZINGERS/The Scandals/Thin Lips—Crossroads, Garwood, NJ

2/6—Ogre/Beyond The Black/Retaliation/Rock This Town—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

2/7—Concrete God/Tailor Made/Words Never Spoken/Unknown Pleasures—The Brighton Bar, Long Branch, NJ

2/12—Lowlight/Modern Chemistry/Semiotics/Twin Coves—The Brighton Bar, Long Branch, NJ

2/12—Leeds Point/Borgo Pass/Exist Among/Eternal Black—Mr. Beerys, Bethpage, NY

2/13—Black Satellite—Irving Plaza, NYC

2/20—The Starship Blues Project/Fever Vein/Natural Born Losers/The Dirty Staryouts—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

2/20—Fridays Child/Secret Sound/Big Shifter—Crossroads, Garwood, NJ

2/26—Zipperhead Productions Presents: The Rory Kelly Band—The Brighton Bar, Long Branch, NJ

2/26—Joe Lynn Turner/Steve Bello—Mexicali Live, Teaneck, NJ

2/26—Vextion/Bobby Mahoney and The Seventh Son/Deaf Rhino—Paul’s Tavern, Lake Como, NJ

2/27—TRAPT/Ronin/SYKA/Legacy/Common Wealth—Stanhope House, Stanhope, NJ

2/27—Michael Graves/Negative Traction/Sometimes the Devil/Immoral Support/EXM/Wolves Attack—The Brighton Bar, Long Branch, NJ

2/28—Joe Lynn Turner/Atom Strange—Blackthorn 51, Elmhurst, NY

3/3—Zipperhead Productions Presents: The Rory Kelly Band—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

3/4—Dinasour Eyelids—Court Tavern, New Brunswick, NJ

3/9—FLAW/We…Our War/Maggotmouth/Palaceburn/Pyramids—The Backstage at Championship Bar, Trenton, NJ

3/12—“Shore Metal Madness IV”—Vision of Disorder/VSSLS/Cyperna/Scars of Envy/Stagger/We Our War/Ixion Lux/Paralysis/Eye of Anubis/Comb the Desert—Headliner Night Club, Neptune, NJ

One Response

  1. Alex

    Awesome! CTC knows how to rock from recordings, to live performances and be all out fun! Couldn’t be more proud!!! #CloseTheCircle


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