Tagged: Alternative Rock

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EMPERORS AND ELEPHANTS To Release Video For ‘CHANGE’ Single On April 27th; Will Re-Release Album With 9 Bonus Tracks


On April 27th : Emperors And Elephants will release a brand new music video for their single “Change” off of the Devil In The Lake album. On May 5th  the band will re-release the  with 9 bonus tracks that will include acoustic takes and demos of the songs you may already know.

Emperors And Elephants have been touring steadily since the release of  Devil In The Lake, and will continue to tour throughout 2015 including playing Rock Fest 2015 in Cadott, WI on July 18th.

For more information about Emperors And Elephants

Exclusive Interview With National Recording Artists LAWLESS HEARTS; Band To Release Debut EP ‘Creatures of Habit’ April 21, 2015


By: Donnie Hardin

Lawless Hearts, based out of Jacksonville, Florida, is set to release their debut EP titled ‘Creatures of Habit‘ by way of Pavement Entertainment on April 21, 2015. Their sound is one of a box that has been pried open with the tools of talent, wisdom, and sheer determination. A unique, refreshing explosion of the sounds of rock-n-roll with hints of blues, a subtle dose of pop-laced, L.A. influenced edgy rock-n-roll vocals, and the meaningful lyrics of extraordinary front-woman Alex Marie. Their message is strong and positive. With creative genius, confidence, an undying passion for all music, and the most important aspect of all music around the world, the gifted art of relating to the listener.

I introduce to you, Lawless Hearts

Q) Please introduce yourselves one by one, and briefly describe your individual influences, also, tell us what unique piece of the puzzle you bring to the band.

Alex Marie: Hi, I’m Alex, vocalist. I’m the only female in the band, I’m also 4’11, haha. Most people think I’m taller from my pictures, but nope, I’m tiny. My musical influences are pretty eclectic. I love everything, from Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, Fleetwood Mac, The Black Crowes, to bands like Dashboard Confessional, and Taking Back Sunday. Then there’s the strong female vocalist background from Ann Wilson, Pat Benatar, to Etta James. I bring a little pop element with an edge to the mix I would say.

Michael Thomas I make the guitar sing. I have so many influences but what really helps me come up with tasteful memorable solos for our songs is my love for jazz and blues. A lot of my legato smooth transitions come from listening to horn players like John Coltrane, Miles Davis, and Dizzy Gillespie. It gives our commercial appeal a little more spice! i want people to know its me playing! i love Bon Jovi, Boston, Motley Crue, and Journey, the list could go on. i bring the guitar hero edge to the band, The Commander. This skill needs to resurface in the industry.

Justus Sutherland: I play rhythm guitar. My biggest influences are Slash and Stevie Ray Vaughan. I think what I bring to the band most is that I help to provide a bigger sound to our live performances.

Corey Ahlquist: Drums: I’ve got a strong background in funk, rock, and blues and have been influenced by great drummers such as John Bonham, Steve Gadd, Taylor Hawkins, and Carter Beauford.  I met Michael and Alex in Atlanta a little over two years ago, when they were at the time planning on relocating there. I hooked up with them through a musicians networking site, and they auditioned me soon after. It only took that one audition to be hooked on the music, message, and overall vibe they put out.

Michael came to Atlanta before the rest of the group and we immediately began putting songs together, working on our performance, and getting ready for the EP we were going to cut. After a few months the band realized Jacksonville was the best place for the band at the moment, so I made a leap and moved down with them. It’s been constant progress ever since. The band keeps me on my toes in the best ways possible. I feel I bring a level of production to band, as far as helping sculpt and structure the songs into there final product. 1555379_10153750514895582_1523963869_n

Robert Joseph: Bass guitar, backing vocals. I’m influenced by everything. I’ve been playing instruments since the first grade, So any music is good to me.

Q) In a nutshell, please explain how the five of you got together and formed Lawless Hearts.

Alex Marie (Vocals):  Michael (My brother) and I formed it out of necessity really in 2009 when Myspace was all the rage, I was approached by an Indie label to do a sort of ‘Battle of the Bands’ for a record deal. So my brother and I were doing two different projects at the time and came together quickly for this one show, and it just kind of clicked,Why don’t we start a band together?“, and that’s how it began. We’ve gone through several member changes since then, but these boys that are with me now, are the deal. And I couldn’t be happier to be in this family

Q) At what point did the band, as a unit, discover that you had something original, yet very rock-n-roll which would lead you to get very serious about the band? Was it all business from day one, or was there this sudden realization that “Hey, we have something unique that rocks on our hands”?

 Alex Marie: I think when Michael and I first began with the band, we had the dream conceptualized; trying to manifest a dream is a scary and exciting thing, but… we didn’t know how long it would take. Our sound has definitely evolved into what I believe is what we were meant to be. Everyone has the potential, it’s just whether you truly have the heart, and the guts to go after that wild notion.

Q) The band seems to really believe in the power of  ‘the message within a song’, tell us what issues, topics, etc., are most important to you that you can convey through your music. How important is it that you reach out to the listener and relate?

Alex Marie: It’s extremely important to be able to relate. People are starving to feel something real in the world, it’s almost tangible. People want connection, why do you think social media is so huge? People want to feel like they are a part of something. It’s like being ‘alone in a crowded room‘, when you hear us, I want you to know that there is someone else who knows your struggle. 

Q) The EP titled ‘Creatures of Habit‘ will be released through PAVEMENT ENTERTAINMENT on April 21, 2015. How excited are you to be working with the label and getting things off the ground? 

Alex Marie: We are very excited! We believe Pavement is an awesome fit for us. We’re ready to move forward in our career as musicians, and honestly it’s been a long time coming for sure.

Michael Thomas: We are so excited for the world to see us in a major way! we’ve been at it for a while

Q) Are there any plans for touring after the EP’s release? Or is it back into the studio to work on the upcoming full-length album?

Alex Marie: We can’t wait to tour, we toured Europe last May on our own, and it was amazing, but not cheap! We want to show the world what it means to be a Lawless Heart. We hope in-between shows we can record our full-length!


Q) A full-length album will follow the release of the EP,  ‘Creatures of Habit’, what exactly can you tell me about the album, is there yet a working title? Is there a tentative release date, or time period the band is shooting for, for the release of the album? How much material does the band have to work with at the moment for the release? 

Alex Marie: Right now we are working with about twenty or so songs for the album. We also have a working title “Hell and Back”, which is a title of one of the songs. We really don’t have a release date tentative as of yet, we should know more once our EP is released April 21st.

Q) Back to the ‘messages within the songs’ vibe, what are some of the topics, life issues, overall theme, etc, does the band, as a unit, see itself focusing on throughout the upcoming album, or will it just kind of flow as the recording and production takes place?

Alex Marie: I think overall it’s about having the strength to overcome anything. Everyone struggles, everyone loses hope. Everyone has a yin and a yang. It all goes back to the connection. Without real connection you lose humanity.

Q) Beyond the release of the EP, and the eventual release of the full-length album, where does the band Lawless Hearts see themselves two years down the road?

Alex Marie Headlining arenas!

Michael Thomas: …and touring the biggest of the big festivals around he world. 1157448_581522991912552_478469327_n

For more information on Lawless Hearts, check out the links below…






The Misadventures Of Black Frank (The Life of a Metal Radio DJ) – PART ONE: The Night We Stole KORN

By: Frank Webb

#1 – The Night We Stole KORN

        People are always telling me what a great storyteller that I am. That comes with having a lot of great stories. I have decided to share some, no particular timeline or order. This one will say a lot about how rock radio was back then and how different it is now compared to back then.
       It was early 1995 and I was amazed by what was going on around me. I had been at my part-time job as a deejay on 100.5 The Fox for over two years. The metal show that was given to me almost as an afterthought, The Metal Pit, had taken off and was achieving great ratings. My first program director, Buzz Casey, who gave me the show, told me that the show was good for our image as a station with an attitude, but that the audience would be small, mostly pimply faced kids with black tee shirts calling me all night screaming “SLAYER”. Well, we had plenty of them but, to the surprise of station management, we got a lot more than that. Sure, I played the Slayer and stuff that nobody thought that they’d ever hear on the radio, the Obituary’s and the Six Feet Under’s, but I also realized that there were bands that were starting to appear that I felt were the future of rock on the radio. Their songs had good hooks and melodies, things that you had to have in order to get airplay, but they were also incredibly aggressive and incorporated elements of growling “Cookie Monster” vocals and even the evil Rap.
          I knew that the rock programmers and consultants were uncomfortable with the new stuff that was starting to be impossible not to play on a rock station. On my very first Metal Pit, I played 2 bands that had never been on the radio here, Tool and White Zombie. Within weeks, both were in regular rotation, so I knew that I had something.
        They tried to fight back. Buzz was gone and our new program director, Peter Smith, had no choice but to do what the management told him and flood the airwaves with Hootie and the Blowfish. It didn’t work. Ratings went down. Rock radio was at war with itself over what else to play besides the grunge that was and still is so popular.  Personally, I think that the darkness of Cobain and the like may have opened the door for the genuinely angry shit that followed. I hated hearing Hootie on my station, so I knew what I had to do. I joined the nu metal army. One by one, in addition to the real aggro stuff, I started putting in the new bands. Not everyone liked it. I did get some calls from the more hardcore people telling me to “stop playing that shit and play Pantera“. I felt that I was saving rock radio, so I faded the heat and continued playing the new bands. Korn was one of them. In late ’94, I got a single from them called “Blind” I liked it, especially the little jazzy break at the end of the song. I played it. I did not give a fuck what people thought.
          Lots of things changed as 1995 began. Enter Michael Lee as program director of the Fox. He was local, from Lexington, and had worked here as a deejay on the old Rock 102 so he understood the Louisville market. He also understood that we’d become too tame so he began to make us heavier. The fact that our morning show went from Bob and Tom to the much more edgy Howard Stern didn’t hurt either.
          We had competition now too, as the boys across town started WQMF, or Q2, to try to knock us down a peg. Their PD, Rick Jamie, was a very competent guy who was almost obsessed with finding ways to get the Fox. The first official Korn single, “Chutes and Ladders” comes out and, for some reason, Michael decides to hold off on playing the song. That gave Rick an opening at Q2 and he jumped on it, putting the song into heavy rotation. A show was booked at Louisville Gardens and the record company, pissed off at us, gave the presents on the show to Q2.
       I’ll always give Michael the props for being a great card player. He called everyone’s bluff. Weeks passed. Q2 was not really promoting the show that hard, their ratings were far below ours anyway, Korn had a following, but they were still a new band. With a couple of weeks until showtime, things looked like a train wreck. Advance ticket sales were not that good, so the promoter freaked out and moved the show to the smaller Brewery Thunderdome (popular venue in Louisville during the late 1990’s). Right around that time, a conversation was had between Michael and the record label, who obviously sent out the S.O.S. I wasn’t in the room, but I will say this, all of a sudden we start spiking the Korn song, giving away tickets, and talking about THEIR show. They never took presents away from Q2, they said it was too late. I was also asked to hammer Korn on the Metal Pit over the weekend and give away some tickets. I gladly did so.
          The night of the show, it was all hands on deck. Our entire staff was there and, with the added promotion by The Fox and the smaller venue, the place is packed to the rafters. Korns‘ tour bus is parked directly behind the stage and there’s a door that goes from the bus right to the middle of the stage. Inside the Brewery, Jamie and his staff are prancing around like proud peacocks, taking undue credit for the big crowd. At one point, he approached me and sneered “Hey Black Frank, hope you’re having a good time at OUR show.” What Rick Jamie didn’t realize was, at that very moment, Michael is on the bus with the band and the record rep making a deal. While the backup band is playing, Michael comes running to me and pulls me to the side. I’m with my girlfriend, he’s new to the station and doesn’t know me that well, so he looks at my girl and asks her “How big are his balls?” “Pretty big” she replies. Michael turns to me and asks “Do you wanna steal this show?” “Fuck yeah!!! is my response of course. Then I get the plan. He goes back on the bus and seals the deal. I am to take a couple of big guys, Metallica Tom was one of them, and go stand by the stairs next to Jamie, who’s getting ready to go do stage announcements in front of a crowd that’s literally crawling over itself in anticipation of Korn coming on. I was to watch that backstage door. If Michael stuck his head in and give me the sign, my buddies were to block Rick and I was to bum rush the stage, grab the mic, and let it loose for one minute, promoting The Fox and making sure to tell people to go out and buy the CD, which had just come out.
           The four of us just stood there with all the chaos going on around us. Rick was so caught up in the moment and probably rehearsing in his head what he was going to say while holding his prop, a longneck Budweiser in his hand. He never saw it coming. In an instant, Michael stuck his head in the door and gave a thumbs up sign and it all worked with military precision. The boys never put their hands on Rick, but they did not let him pass. I hopped over them, ran up and snatched the mic and began screaming at the top of my lungs. I introduced myself, got the crowd to chant “Fox Rocks”, told ’em to go buy the CD, and had ’em chanting ‘KORN KORN KORN’ as I put the mic down and ran off the stage as the band came filing through the back door.
        Rick Jamie was last seen that night slamming his beer down and running out the front door wondering who’d screwed him and Michael and the rest of our staff piled on me like I had just scored the winning touchdown. It was one of the greatest moments of my career and the real birth of the nu metal era on The Fox. Hootie was dead.

Alice In Chains Announce North American Tour Dates; Portion Of Proceeds To Honor Fallen Leukemia Patient

(Courtesy Capitol Records)

(Courtesy Capitol Records)

Alice In Chains have announced an upcoming tour and will be directing a portion of ticket sales into a memorial fund for the late leukemia patient Stefan Dayne-Ankle, who the band had become close to.

“Thanks to the great people at WMRQ in Hartford, CT, we became close with a young man named Stefan Dayne-Ankle, who sadly last week lost a courageous battle with Leukemia,” the band said in a statement to media outlets. “To honor Stefan and help give him the memorial he deserves, we’re donating two-dollars from every ticket pre-sold on this tour.” the statement added.

For those interested in donating to the fund please click the link below:


Alice in Chains Tour Dates

07/17 – Starlight Theatre @ Pala, CA (San Diego)
07/18 – The Pearl @ Las Vegas, Nev.
07/20 – The Depot @ Salt Lake City
07/21 – Knitting Factory @ Boise, Idaho
07/22 – Knitting Factory @Spokane, Wash.
07/24 – Fox Theatre @ Oakland, CA
07/25 – Thunder Valley Casino @ Lincoln, CA (Sacramento)
07/28 – Ogden Theatre @ Denver, CO
07/31 -Brady Theatre @ (382) Tulsa, OK
08/01 – Winstar Casino @ Thackerville, OK
08/03 – Pageant @ St. Louis, MO
08/04 – Eagles Ballroom @ Milwaukee, WI
08/06 – Horseshoe Casino @ Cincinnati, OH
08/07 – Ryman Auditorium @ Nashville, TN
08/08 – Ryman Auditorium @ Nashville, TN
08/10 – Hard Rock Live @ Orlando, FL
08/11 -Seminole Hard Rock @ Hollywood, FL (Ft Lauderdale)
08/14 -Foxwoods @ Mashantucket, CT
08/15 – Taj Mahal @ Atlantic City
08/16 – Musikfest @ Bethlehem, PA