North Jersey Notes: Lunatic Fringe, Another Distraction, Ashes Of Your Enemy and More!

It’s been a while since I’ve been able to actually feature a band out of North Jersey here in my “North Jersey Notes” column, but I finally found a band that was worthy. What happened to this music scene? We used to see new bands almost every week, and now I’m lucky to find any rock bands come out of North Jersey! Come on guys! Rock is not dead! Anyway, I came across a young band out of Bergen County who call themselves Lunatic Fringe, a name I normally relate to Dean Ambrose of the WWE. I got to hear a song called “Welcome To Our Freakshow,” and it wasn’t bad. The more I looked into this band, I realized that they might be the product of a bunch of School of Rock, which means the musicianship in this band was top notch.

Lunatic Fringe is a young, loud, and aggressive hard rock band from Carlstadt, NJ, who formed back in 2015. According to their bio, the band was influenced by metal and hard rock rooted bands like Motley Crue, Ozzy Osbourne, Iron Maiden, Van Halen, Metallica and Black Sabbath with a mix of the modern hard rockers like Avenged Sevenfold and Black Veil Brides with a little bit of tango and jazz for a good time. According to the WRAT and SiriusXM deejay, Keith Roth, “Every now and then you see a band that stops you in your tracks and makes you take notice. Lunatic Fringe is one of those bands! I look forward to watching their progression moving forward! They can be the faces of the next revolution!” Lunatic Fringe is comprised of singer Sophia Hanley, guitarists Abby Zachko and Cooper Boyd, who could be a legend in the making with his stage presence, bassist Matt Stone and drummer Eitan Ofeck.

According to the band, you really need to see Lunatic Fringe live to appreciate what they’re doing as a band. Catch them live on Sept. 14 when they open for Janet Gardner from Vixen at Dingbatz in Clifton, NJ, where they’ll be performing their new single, “Welcome To Our Freakshow,” as well as other original music and some spicy covers sprinkled in. They urge possible new fans to “come and be a part of the Freakshow!” For more on Lunatic Fringe, visit



My bro, Antonio Staropoli, drummer from Another Distraction, hit me up a couple of weeks ago to ask me to check out the band’s new EP, Fragments, which they will be releasing next Friday, Sept. 8. The EP sounds amazing! Singer Chris Drako has an extremely marketable voice. Musically, these are marketable. The songs “Direction Define,” “Use Your Words” and “Where Reside” really rocked, but my favorite track was the song “Here’s That Song I Promised (10 Years Too Late)” featuring the lovely Sarah Anderson from the band Aurin. The video for this song is awesome and reminiscent of the Ozzy and Lita classic “Close My Eyes Forever.” Another Distraction will be celebrating the release of Fragments with a CD release party next Friday night (9/8) at Mexicali Live in Teaneck, NJ with Gathering After Ashes, Corevalay, Arc’d Angel and The Components! For more on Another Distraction, visit

My brothers from Ashes of Your Enemy will be opening for the legendary Metal Church in their only NYC appearance up at Blackthorn 51 in Elmhurst, NY on Sept. 10. Also performing will be Magus Beast, United Pistols and A Voice Within. This should be a great night of metal for you metalheads hibernating till the winter. For more info and tickets, visit

And finally, some of my buds will be performing a very cool event in Philly the weekend of Sept. 8 until Sept. 10. The event is the Sixth Annual End of Summer Music Festival at the Dockside Bar at Dave and Buster’s, also known as “Conn-Con 2017.” Some of my buds who will be performing will be Jersey’s own Sekond Skyn, Stagger, Negative Sky, Ropetree, Shattered Skin, We…Our War, Revel 9 and Philly’s Primadonnaz. These are just a few of the bands that I know performing. There are plenty more since this is a three-day event. For more info on this end of summer event, 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:

8/30—Eye Hate God/Cro-Mag/Neve Shatter/Sunrot—Mexicali Live, Teaneck, NJ

8/31—Suburban Samurai/Joe Billy/Zorp/Jankfoot and the Stinkbingers—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

9/1—Flatleaver/Over The Mountain—Paul’s Tavern, Lake Como, NJ

9/1—Violent Island/Sinking Monroe/Drive, Kid/Back Pocket Alimony/Travelers of an Empty Mind/Soapbox Sound/Today Is….—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

9/2—Mosh 4 Paws 2017 featuring Madball/Line of Scrimmage/The Banner/Paper Trail/Incited/Threat 2 Society/Wastelands—Mexicali Live, Teaneck, NJ

9/3—Dead End/Sick/Cold-Blooded Capitol/Firefight/The Blurred Conscience/Kathodial/Economy Flights—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

9/6—Crazy Town/Lethal Affection/Decades/Generation Underground—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

9/7—Through The Eyes of the Dead/The Last Ten Seconds of Life/Left to Vanish/Deadtide/Ender/Footage of a Yeti—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

9/8—Jersey Campfires Production Presents: Another Distraction/Gathering After Ashes/Corevalay/The Components/Arc’d Angel—Mexicali Live, Teaneck, NJ

9/8—ANAKA/Zakk Sabbath—Starland Ballroom, Sayreville, NJ

9/8—CHMCL STR8JKT/Succumbed/Antoine Poncelet—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

9/9—Sekond Skyn/Stagger—Dockside Bar at Dave and Buster’s, Philadelphia, PA

9/9—Sacred Oath/Dialith—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

9/10—Negative Sky—Dockside Bar at Dave and Buster’s, Philadelphia, PA

9/10—Metal Church/Ashes of Your Enemy/Magus Beast/United Pistols/A Voice Within—Blackthorn 51, Elmhurst, NY

9/10—EDORRA/Somewhere to Call Home/Sleepers/KOBA/Deadbeat/Burning Limbs/TheWarWithin—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

9/14—Kevin Devine and the Goddamn Band/Deaf Rhino/LineLions—Debonair Music Hall, Teaneck, NJ

9/14—Janet Gardner/Lunatic Fringe/Sunday Brave/Instant Regret Syndrome—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

9/15—Firehouse/Velvet Rose—Debonair Music Hall, Teaneck, NJ

9/15—Jaded Past—Roxy and Duke’s Roadhouse, Dunellen, NJ

9/15—Answer Infinity/Inner 5/Dusk/SUMR—Dingbatz, Clifton, NJ

9/16—Rahway/Toothless/Defy The Tide/Red Hymns/The Hill You Die On/Behind the Grey/Bear In The Woods—The V Spot, Scranton, PA

9/16—Helmet/Super Snake—Debonair Music Hall, Teaneck, NJ

9/17—Midnite Hellion/Obituary/Exodus—Starland Ballroom, Sayreville, NJ

9/23—Zenergy Entertainment Presents Brainfest V featuring DJ Ray Vader / The Walk Arounds / Tilted / Metal Life Crisis / The Desilvas / Ashes of Your Enemy / FLATLEAVER / Negative Sky / Lower the Veil / Sekond Skyn / Black Reign (The American Black Sabbath Experience)—Jackson Moose Lodge 1459, Jackson, NJ