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Metal





Rock Out the New Year for Ghost Ship at Dante's

Just because we're moving up in year digits doesn't mean we're moving past the things that have transpired this year. Amid the abundant parties consider stopping by Dante's, where all sorts of rock will be rolling for a good cause. 

Rock for Ghost Ship: A Musical Memorial Benefit is the way to go for partaking in turning the calendar page and showing support for those who need it. Dante's is covering the production costs for the show, where guitar gods of hair metal revival BREAKER BREAKER will be headlining a string of sets from Melt, LKN, Lord Becky and the English Language, meaning that 100% of what's made at the door goes to the families of those lost in the Oakland Ghost Ship warehouse fire some weeks ago.

The Dante's New Years Eve is one of the best ways to bang out three things Portlanders love to do best: 1. Drink away crappy year, 2. See a bomb show 3. Do things for a great cause. For a $10 suggested donation, that's really not that bad at all.





Best Bay Area Songs 2016

Written by Guest Editor: Stefan Aronsen of SF Intercom and Balanced Breakfast Industry Meetup

As an avid concert-goer and music promoter, I listen to a lot of music from Bay Area bands. However, I don't find myself listening to very many albums! I realize my being a music enthusiast that doesn't listen to albums might be considered a contradiction. Shouldn't a promoter of bands also promote full albums? The problem is, most fans don't listen to full albums, why should I be any different? Thus, instead of promoting people to listen to music in a way that they are uncomfortable with, I am choosing to promote a system that works.

Full albums can be intimidating for bands to produce. I regularly advocate that bands release singles instead of waiting to release music until they have enough songs to fill an album. The following is a playlist from 10 bands that released awesome music in 2016.

Fantastic Negrito - In The Pines
Many people discovered Xavier Dphrepaulezz and his band Fantastic Negrito when he submitted his song Lost in A Crowd to NPR’s Tiny Desk Competition in 2015 and won. However, my first introduction to him was as a guest speaker at Creative Mornings. The way he talked about his life, his songs and his goals made me want to listen to his music. While Xavier has had his roadblocks in the past, it seems there is no stopping him now.

CON BRIO - Paradise
I hadn’t heard Ziek McCarter’s band Con Brio before I saw them live at the North Beach Festival in 2014. I was blocks away when I first heard the exciting sounds of his band. As I got closer I was drawn in by his energetic performance. Did you know he does flips on stage? I didn’t until I heard him speak at SF Music Expo about how he originally joined Con Brio. With this new found knowledge I can’t wait to see them live again.

HEARTWATCH - Never Let You Go
How long have you been listening to Claire George’s band HEARTWATCH? Perhaps you were a fan when they were called The Tropics? Either way … you know them now … so you must be aware of their exciting sound. I’ve had the pleasure of seeing them perform live at BottleRock, The Independent and Claire solo at OB Music & Art Festival. Never heard of HEARTWATCH? Listen now and find their next show near you.

The Y Axes - Umbra
Do you love science, video games and nerdiness all wrapped up and delivered in an indie space rock style? Hopefully the answer is yes. If so, check out the high energy vocals of Alexi Belchere and her band The Y Axes. Since they formed in 2011, the band has come a long way in finding their sound and look. I was first introduced to the band in 2013 at a Balanced Breakfast meetup. The band’s guitarist Devin Nelson showed me a picture of his band, since then half of the faces in that picture have changed. With Devin and Alexi changing their bandmates they also created a more mature sound.

Kendra McKinley - Fine As A Vine
When Kendra arrived in San Francisco, a friend suggested she check out Balanced Breakfast. She quickly made many friends, played shows and recruited band mates. She managed to take her solo looped sound and progressed it to a full sound. She sounds amazing on the stage at The FIllmore or in the woods at DIO Fest.

Down and Outlaws - Lay Me Down
I’ve seen Peter Danzig and his band Down and Outlaws at a lot of theirs shows in San Francisco. I got their band patch at their show at Noise Pop 2016. I wear it proudly on my every day sweater. Though I’ve seen them plenty of times in San Francisco, my favorite experience is still spending time with them at SxSW 2016.

Panic is Perfect - Turn Back Into Stars
Managed by Guerilla Management, the same company that works with Con Brio, Mike Hoffman and his band have finally made it to the festival circuit. For many bands being selected to play major festivals like SxSW, Live 105 BFD Festival, and BottleRock is a major goal and a sign of success. Get ready for some more exciting shows from Panic is Perfect in 2017.

Dangermaker - I Won't Let You Down
I love spending time with the members of SF band Dangermaker. It doesn’t matter if it’s an intimate conversation at Mutiny Radio with lead singer Adam Brookes or being at a live show watching bass player Neko Fuzzmonk’s hair blow in the wind like a supermodel.

Battlehooch - EVERYDAY
If you haven’t met a member of Battlehooch, you must not like local music. With 6+ members in the band, they are larger than most Bay Area bands. Sometimes it’s hard to keep track of all the members of a band, thus my friends would often joke that they were in Battlehooch. Would you be able to know if they were telling the truth?

Abbot Kinney - It's the Middle of the Night
If you’ve been to LA you might know the landmark in Venice, California called Abbot Kinney Blvd. Hailing from Los Angeles, lead singer Jared Swanson has brought more than just a landmark name, he has also shared a lot of his industry knowledge with our San Francisco friends. Over the years a lot of bands have relocated from SF to LA. Abbot Kinney is a reminder to local bands that we have a scene and you can be discovered and experience a lot of success here in the Bay Area.





New England Record of the Month: I Was Awake - Facade

With their new album, Facade, I Was Awake has released upon the world a substantial effort that shows the versatility and raw talent of the five-piece metal group.  Weaving together a dynamic web of prog, metal, and alt-rock that invokes the greatness of bands like The Deftones and Porcupine Tree, while maintaining an original and modern energy, the boys from Beverly, MA have created a deeply engaging sound that will keep this album on heavy rotation.  From beginning to end, each track shows a different facet of the band, starting with the title track, a one and a half minute crescendo, leading up to the hard-hitting "Erasing", filled with chunky guitars and mixed meter grooves.  Facade is a journey, maintaining those strong grooves, taking periodic stops for high-energy riffs ("Gravity") and softer dynamics ("As Within...", "...So Without").  If thought provoking lyricism and intelligent songwriting is your thing, then I Was Awake will likely become a new favorite.  Give Facade a listen (or twelve) and keep your eyes open for live performances in 2017. -Brian Varneke 

 

December 2016
I Was Awake
"Facade
"
mp3

With their new album, Facade, I Was Awake has released upon the world a substantial effort that shows the versatility and raw talent of the five-piece metal group.  Weaving together a dynamic web of prog, metal, and alt-rock that invokes the greatness of bands like The Deftones and Porcupine Tree, while maintaining an original and modern energy, the boys from Beverly, MA have created a deeply engaging sound that will keep this album on heavy rotation.  From beginning to end, each track shows a different facet of the group, starting with the title track, a one and a half minute crescendo leading up to the hard hitting "Erasing", filled with chunky guitars and mixed meter grooves.  Facade is a journey, maintaining those strong grooves, taking periodic stops for high-energy riffs ("Gravity") and softer dynamics ("As Within...", "...So Without").  If thought provoking lyricism and intelligent songwriting is your thing, then I Was Awake will likely become a new favorite.  Give Facade a listen (or twelve) and keep your eyes open for live performances in 2017. -Brian Varneke





Death Vacation brings guts and glory to new EP "When Bones Grow Cold"

If your way of staying warm during the bleak New York winters has less to do with sipping cocoa by a fire and more with sweating it out in the middle of a mosh pit, Death Vacation's new EP may be more welcome than a holiday trip to Florida. The NJ/NY-based singer, Michelle Mancuso, spits and snarls her way through the 5 tracks that make up Bones Grow Cold, and her gut-busting vocals are paired with grindcore beats that are coated with enough grime to satisfy even the nastiest hardcore fiends. Though the tunes definitely have melodic moments, the real payoff here is in the visceral, chomping percussive-ness of the tracks that grate against your ears alongside all the blood and noise. Check out the band's track "Parasitic" streaming below. - Olivia Sisinni

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