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Pretty & Nice follow own set of rules

Posted by Scott McLennan April 29, 2013 07:00 PM

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Pretty & Nice's new release is "Golden Rules for Golden People"

Pretty & Nice is the rock 'n' roll equivalent of a well-dressed man who charms his way into your party then spends all his time engaging you with the voices in his head. The Boston experimental-pop troupe sounds so poised on its new album "Golden Rules for Golden People" that all of the music's absurd twists and turns sneak up through repeated listenings.

"Golden Rules for Golden People" comes out Tuesday, April 30, on Rory Records. The band then hits Great Scott in Allston on Wednesday, May 1, with Pattern is Movement and Kal Marks.

Pretty & Nice don't go in for the sprawl of Flaming Lips or the overt quirkiness of They Might Be Giants and Ween. Pretty & Nice finds its way into the weird using dynamic blasts of pop artfully splattered with bits of punk and New Wave. The band will toss in a cartoony twist here and there ("Critters" and "The Frog" come to mind), but is better at warping a song that seemingly got a normal start on life.

"Kill the Beast," for instance, takes a well-mannered Brit-pop influence into fantasy realm. And "Yonkers" jerks its punky posture back and forth, eventually steering the musing on Malibu, winters, and zebras (and pronounce that "zeb- ra") into a light, regal melody.

"Q_Q" is the album's lynchpin, pouring in all manner of sound and allusion without causing a flicker in its tractor beam groove.

Eddie Japan rumbles to the top

Posted by Scott McLennan April 27, 2013 09:29 AM

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Eddie Japan brought class and brass to the Rumble

When the dust settled Friday (well, the crack of Saturday, actually) at TT the Bear's, the swinging sounds of Eddie Japan swept up the crown at finals of the 34th Rock 'n' Roll Rumble.

Eddie Japan faced off against Glenn Yoder and the Western States and Twin Berlin for the conclusion of a wild Rumble season, one disrupted by tragedy then transformed into a powerful symbol of community. Before Rumble Queen Anngelle Wood announced the winner, chants of "We are Boston" filled TTs.

Eddie Japan offers a sprawling sound laced with trumpet, keys, twin guitars, back-up singers and_ for its big finale_ strings on "A Town Called Nowhere." The band puts a sharp, modern edge on a retro sound, proffering "Pulp Fiction" rock.

Eddie Japan and Glenn Yoder and the Western States faced off on Night 3 of the preliminaries. Eddie Japan won that night, but Yoder and crew advanced to the semi-finals as a wild card and beat its field in that round. Twin Berlin made it to the finals via two wild-card nods.

Watching all three at work Friday was a celebration of the long-held diversity within the Boston music scene. Eddie Japan's tarted up R&B brought to mind Lou Miami and the Kozmetics; Yoder's tumbleweed and Crazy Horse concoction summoned memories of Del Fuegos; and Twin Berlin's punked-out pop smacked of the Neighborhoods. No doubt all those elder statesmen had their doppelgangers as well.

And really, I'd rather have this type of smorgasbord than a Sunset Strip, CBGBs, or easily pegged "Boston sound." So cheers, Rumble, for celebrating all that does go into the real rock of Boston.

A few finals observations, and then you can check out a thorough recap of the finals in Monday's Boston Globe.

State Rep. Marty "Roadrunner" Walsh is running to succeed Tom Menino as mayor of Boston. Walsh, who filed the legislation to make the Modern Lovers' "Roadrunner" the state rock song, stumped for votes from the Rumble stage, making him perhaps the first of the Boston mayoral hopefuls to campaign in Cambridge.

The Dogmatics, who played a special guest set before the Rumble winner was announced, need a minimum two songs to warm up. But once they get cooking, these '80s garage punks summon all the snot and swagger of that era's club scene. The Dogmatics nailed its cover of Charlie Chesterman's "King Size Cigarette," and noted the passing of George Jones with a roaring cover of No Show's "White Lightning" (featuring TT's own Kevin Patey on harmony vocals).

And one last shout out to TT the Bear's for being a such a great place to watch the Rumbling. Happy 40th anniversary.

The Rare Occasions fork over new E.P.

Posted by Scott McLennan April 25, 2013 09:08 AM

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The Rare Occasions don't make it that rare at all to craft little indie-pop symphonies on the new "Applefork" E.P.

Of the five tracks, four have tiered arrangements, pushing forward and pulling back sonic asides that give these 3-1/2-minute-long songs decent sweep, so there's your symphonic element (and the straight-ahead "Getaway" isn't a slouch when it comes to just fervently bopping).

All of the songs are a little wobbly with guitars and keys teetering in time to singer Brian McLaughlin's moods as they run from forlorn to damn-well pleased. There's your indie element.

And all of the songs are about dudes and chicks. She's leaving; he's leaving; they're staying; she's murdering; he's running: you get the picture, and there's your pop element.

But while there is a certain formula at play here, "Applefork" is by no means boring. The opener "Battin' Lashes" fuses soulful vocal belting to lean, angular guitar riffs. A burst of gnarly guitar erupts in the middle of the Brechtian bravado of "Miss Mary Mack." "Silhouettes" is all psychedelic glimmer.

"Applefork" is available at http://therareoccasions.bandcamp.com/album/applefork . The Rare Occasions play Friday, April 26, at the Middle East, 472, Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge. The show also features Frank and Dependent, Orca Orca, and Anjimile. Proceeds from the show will benefit the Jimmy Fund.

Singer finds her writing voice

Posted by Scott McLennan April 24, 2013 09:06 AM

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Singer Juliet Simmons Dinallo co-wrote all but one of the songs on her debut "No Regrets" (Doug Christian photo)

Juliet Simmons Dinallo is not a rookie. She studied at Berklee College of Music and sang in its gospel choir before pursuing her craft, first with an emphasis on rock and then with a shift into roots music.

"I guess around 2000 I started listening to Emmylou Harris and John Hiatt, and I just said, 'Whoa,' and that took me in a whole other direction," she says. "I have a rock background. I love Rush and Led Zeppelin. But then I fell in love with the twang stuff."

Dinallo's next discovery came around 2004 when she found Patty Griffin's music. "I started listening to her writing, and that just took me in a whole different direction," Dinallo says.

"No Regrets" is where it has all led. "No Regrets" is the debut CD by Dinallo's band Juliet and the Lonesome Romeos. Tree O Records released the album earlier this year, and the band has a hometown gig Thursday, April 25, at Club Passim, 47 Palmer St., Cambridge. Show time is 8 p.m.

FULL ENTRY

Dropkicks benefit for bomb victims

Posted by Scott McLennan April 23, 2013 07:06 PM

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Boston's Dropkick Murphys will play a matinee Sunday at the House of Blues to raise money for victims of last week's marathon bombing. Here's the official word the band posted on its Facebook page

We are playing House of Blues Boston this Sunday, April 28. Tickets are $25 and go on sale tomorrow at 10 a.m.

This ticket link will go live at 10 a.m.:

http://www.ticketmaster.com/event/01004A97B311D0F3

This will be a special daytime matinee show, so that entire families can take part in this show. Doors will open at 12:30 p.m., and the first band will start at 1 p.m.

The bill on Sunday will also include our friends State Radio, Big D and The Kids, The Parkington Sisters, Old Brigade and Barroom Heroes.

The For Boston movement is a 3 stage plan. The tshirt was stage 1; this show is stage 2; stage 3 stage will be announced on Monday. All proceeds from the show will go toward helping victims of the bombings, their families and communities. The funds will be disbursed directly to those affected by the tragedy through our charity, The Claddagh Fund, which is a nationally-recognized official 501(c)3 charity whose mission is to serve the most vulnerable in our communities. Innocent people being hurt by terrorists fits the core of Claddagh's mission, and we are proud to be here, along with you, to be of service to the victims.

As we said before, we have a special message for scalpers: If you resell this ticket for profit you will rot in HELL.


Love,

Dropkick Murphys

Scalpers, you've been warned.

Bob Marley gets a Boston accent

Posted by Scott McLennan April 21, 2013 03:03 PM

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Bob Marley's "Kaya" album is perhaps his most misunderstood record, one written off as inferior to its predecessor "Exodus" and lacking in the miltant commentary that would resume on "Survival."

But longtime Boston Globe music critic Steve Morse helps set the record straight in new liner notes he penned for the the 35th anniversary reissue of "Kaya" that hits stores on Tuesday. The expanded "Legacy Edition" includes a bonus track of Marley's "Smile Jamaica" and a second disc featuring a live recording from the 1978 "Kaya" tour.

In an essay that weaves personal accounts of meeting Marley and later interviews with Marley scholars and associates, Morse writes:

Enough of the carping. I’m here to tell you that “Kaya” is a whole
lot better than some reviews would suggest. It holds up better than just about anything Marley ever did. Yes, the escapist embrace of ganja is evident (the back cover has a photo of a burning spliff, though the image was removed for release in ganja-phobic Japan). But most of all, Bob has never sung more beautifully about love and romance.

"It was an honor to interview Marley, as crazy as that interview was," says Morse. "It was chaos."

Morse will share those details and more in a curated event happening Tuesday night at Redstar Union, One Kendall Square, Cambridge. John Laurenti will interview Morse for about 45 minutes (with the discussion streaming live on www.bobmarley.com) and then Duppy Conquerors, the Boston-based Bob Marley tribute band, will perform "Kaya" in its entirety. The event begins at 8 p.m., and admission is $10.

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A celebration of the vinyl frontier

Posted by Scott McLennan April 17, 2013 06:32 PM

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What better way to celebrate Record Store Day than with a record about records? Or so thinks the gang at Bubbles in the Think Tank, the radio program that Belinda Rawlins helms on WMFO-FM (91.5) Saturday nights starting at 11.

The Bubbles crew last year delivered "The Petite 7 Inch Record" and this week drops "Eponymously Entitled," featuring the Catbirds, Deke Dickerson, Mr. Curt with Bird Mancini, the Weisstronauts, Pete LaBonne, and SEMIchuck (plus hidden tracks; whoever heard of hidden tracks on a 7-inch?).

To celebrate the release of the limited-run, clear-vinyl, artistically appointed (that's onetime Mothers of Invention cover designer Cal Schenkel's handiwork on the label), there's a big show happening Friday, April 19 (Record Store Day's Eve), at the Midway Cafe, 3496 Washington St., in Jamaica Plain. The show features the Catbirds, Ray Mason, the Weisstronauts, Bird Mancini, Mr. Curt, and Ed "Moose" Savage. The $15 admission includes a copy of the vinyl release plus a download code for the digi version which features two bonus tracks. If you can't make it to JP, but need to get your paws on this, visit http://love.bubblesinthethinktank.com. Proceeds benefit non-commercial, community radio station WMFO.

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A song for Boston

Posted by Scott McLennan April 17, 2013 08:13 AM

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Shadwell

Singer/songwriter Aaron Shadwell just posted this response to the Boston Marathon bombing tragedy.

On his Facebook page, Shadwell writes

Hey Boston, I was up all night putting what happened into a song. It helped me a lot I would stop and cry in the middle of a take and then get it back together and try again. I hope it helps you.

Yeah, this does help. Nice work.

Cold Satellite fuses poetry and music

Posted by Scott McLennan April 16, 2013 08:47 PM

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Musician Jeffrey Foucault and poet Lisa Olstein collaborate in Cold Satellite

Imagine a collaboration between an award-winning poet and acclaimed singer-songwriter. What comes to mind is probably not nearly as rocking as "Cavalcade," the new record by Cold Satellite, the very real collaboration between poet Lisa Olstein and musician Jeffrey Foucault, two artists making their homes in Western Mass.

"It sounds fussier than it is," Foucault says when told that "Cavalcade" upends preconceived ideas of a poet-folkie union.

"Cavalcade" is about as unfussy as an album gets, pairing Olstein's vivid and impressionistic verses with music that sounds birthed in garages and honky tonks. Cold Satellite corrals an impressive lineup of musicians around Foucault. Billy Conway plays drums, Jeremy Curtis is on bass, David Goodrich plays guitar, Alex McCullough handles pedal steel guitar, and Hayward Williams plays keys and sings background vocals.

Cold Satellite celebrate the release of "Cavalcade" with a performance at the Lizard Lounge, 1667 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, on Thursday, April 18. Caitlin Canty opens the show at 9:30 p.m. "Cavalcade" won't be out on Signature Sounds until May 21, but copies will be available at the show.

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Using a bass to smash the glass ceiling

Posted by Scott McLennan April 15, 2013 01:58 PM

Note: This post is something I was just mulling over the weekend and set down yesterday, Monday, April 15. Shortly after finishing it, I heard the news about the Marathon bombs. It was not the time to talk rock. Today is not much better. But I feel today much like I did after 9/11 that music is one of the few things that binds us together as decent people, even when we bicker about it. Music expresses what we feel like no other art form can or does. We need music now more than ever. Thank you Rumble for giving Boston a platform for its best music.- Scott

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The New Highway Hymnal, with bassist Amelia Gormley (Photo by Sam Stambaugh)

In all the years that I've been going to rock shows, the routine has not changed a whole lot. Anywhere from a few to a few thousand people shuffle into a venue, wait for the lights to dim, and then watch a band of dudes get busy.

Going to the first three nights of the Rock 'n' Roll Rumble under way at TT the Bear's in Cambridge was a bit different, though. It started normally, with the shuffling, and the dimming, and the watching first with the Okay Win and then Cancer Killing Gemini. Then came the New Highway Hymnal. Amelia Gormley was playing bass. Next, it was Velah, with Jen Johnson playing guitar and singing.

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The Deep North with singer Rebecca Frank (Photo by Chrissy Bulakites)

On Night 2 of the Rumble, I saw Rebecca Frank singing with the Deep North. On Night 3, Eddie Japan expanded its ranks with five women musicians_ back-up singers Kate Connell and Teri Brosius, and violinists were Clara Kebabian, Joanna Ostrander and Jenee Morgan. Later in the night, I watched Cilla Bonnie play bass with Glenn Yoder and the Western States.

Pulled away on other assignments, I missed the second half of the Rumble preliminaries. But in sussing out the field couldn't help but notice that Night 4 had Mary Flatley singing with Mount Peru; Night 5 had Annie Hoffman playing bass with the Field Effect, and Michelle Suicide doing the same with the Suicide Dolls; and Night 6 had Parks with Liz McBride on keys, and singer Ruby Rose Fox was there with Lauren Eicher and Sarah Guild providing additional vocals.

That's a lot of ladies.

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Zozobra turns 'Savage'

Posted by Scott McLennan April 12, 2013 12:25 PM

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Caleb Scofield leads Zozobra to Great Scott in Allston on Saturday

First, there was Cave In. That band could go off in any number of directions, hitting on metal, hard rock, alt, and progressive textures. In 1998, bassist Caleb Scofield joined Cave In just as the Massachusetts band was causing tremors in the musical underground and likewise luring interest from major record labels.

Cave In spun off various side projects, which for Scofield began with experimental doom-metal purveyors Old Man Gloom. In 2006, Scofield and Old Man Gloom's Santos Montano formed Zozobra (which mean "old man gloom"). Scofield writes the music for Zozobra which has run from sludge to hard core and involved a revolving cast of musicians from Cave In and fellow art-metallers Isis.

Zozobra recently released "Savage Masters," the band's most aggressive record to date. The six songs are short and uniformly brutal. But the project still pulls off many sonic shifts The band's tour celebrating the release of "Savage Masters" hits Great Scott, 1222 Commonwealth, Allston, on Saturday. The show starts at 9 p.m. and also features Kowloon Walled City and the Proselyte.

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Whiskey Kill 'Wrecks' it

Posted by Scott McLennan April 11, 2013 11:34 AM

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Whiskey Kill's Tom Ferry

Rockabilly invokes images of hot rods and high times. And sure enough, engines rev and bottles drain on Whiskey Kill's new album "Wrecker." But the rockabilly barrels along some twisted roads as well. There's the dark, Pete Rose-inspired "Charlie Hustle," and cautionary "Nickels and Dimes" drawn from stories of Chuck Berry dealing with unscrupulous promoters.

Sonically, too, Whiskey Kill spices up the raw rockabilly with a touch of blues on "Big Daddy" and accordion riffs on "Chainsaw Steve."

"We purposefully mix in some influences of other genres. We don't won't to get bored," says Whiskey Kill front man Tom Ferry.

Whiskey Kill celebrates the release of "Wrecker" on Saturday, April 13, at the Rockabilly Spring Fling happening at the Midway Cafe, 3496 Washington St., Jamaica Plain. The show starts at 8 p.m. Johnny Carlevale and the Juke Joint Rhythm Rockers, Leah and Her Jaywalkers, and DJ Easy Ed will also be performing.

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Eddie Japan swings into Rumble semis

Posted by Scott McLennan April 10, 2013 10:21 AM

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Eddie Japan, back l-r, Chuck Ferreira, Eric Brosius, and Bart LoPiccolo. Front, l-r, Charles Membrino, David Santos, and Chris Barrett

So at midpoint with Eddie Japan's Night 3 win on Tuesday, it's safe to call the Rock 'n' Roll Rumble a wild ride with no real trends emerging other than there are a lot of really good bands bringing their A games to this event.

Eddie Japan pushed its swinging R&B rock over the top with the help of two female back-up vocalists countering the stinging ache singer David Santos brings to a song, and then layered in three violin players for a dramatic finale of "Town Called Nowhere." All this atop a band that already has a combo trumpet and keyboard player, twin guitars, and a pliable rhythm section that all together spice the tunes with Latin and surf rock influences.

Eddie Japan didn't just fill the stage, but filled TT the Bear's with a frenetic energy generated by a combination of showmanship and songs that bested the heaviness of Supermachine and Blackbutton and the poetic roots rock of Glenn Yoder and the Western States.

So thus far each night of the preliminaries has yielded a unique result: the gritty New Highway Hymnal, the polished Camden, and retro groovy Eddie Japan.

Wednesday is break night, with the preliminaries resuming at 9:30 p.m. Thursday at TT the Bear's, 10 Brookline St., Cambridge. Mount Peru, Whitcomb, Lifestyle, and Twin Berlin set to square off.


Old Abram Brown's summer retreat

Posted by Scott McLennan April 9, 2013 01:17 PM

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An E.P. titled "Summer Home" suggests a batch of songs meant to be played on a boom box at the beach or in a car rolling along, windows down, tunes cranked. But that's not the case on Old Abram Brown's "Summer Home." These five songs are serious headphone music, as in settle down in the pad and bust out the big cans, not those little buds.

Apart from the rambunctious "Mary Anne," the material on "Summer Home" takes on a wistful tone, sometimes listing toward the melancholy, sometimes toward the hopeful. It's all beautifully textured with dramatic keys, clean, chiming guitar parts, and subtle rhythms worked out on drums and percussion.

Singer Carson Lund projects a big confident sound even when his songs are tumbling down jagged memories, as is the case in "Letter Never Sent." His work is an effective upending of mumbly, shrinking, and shrieking indie-rock convention.

The song "Summer Home" is bit of transportive pop that uses the band's cinematic qualities to paint a whole new kind of summertime blues.

Old Abram Brown releases the E.P. on April 16, at which time you can grab it here http://oldabrambrown.bandcamp.com/album/summer-home-2

The band gets an early jump on celebrating the release with a show Wednesday, April 10, at Great Scott, 1222 Commonwealth Ave., Allston. Doors open at 8 p.m., with Kid Mountain and Abadabad also on the bill.


Camden rocks the Rumble

Posted by Scott McLennan April 9, 2013 08:43 AM

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Remember, it's called the Rock 'n' Roll Rumble. So when the dust settled Monday at Night 2 of the Rumble, the most traditional rock 'n' roll band among the four competitors took the win and advanced to the semi-finals.

Camden was that band, playing a relentless 30-minutes of unpretentious, guitar-driven rock 'n' roll you could trace back to the early Stones and Who but given its own contemporary twist. The songs were catchy, the playing tight, and the good mood infectious without turning sappy.

Camden emerged from a tough and diverse field that included the gnarled art-punk of Endation, the poised pop of the Deep North, and the symphonic dance rock of Herra Terra.

The Rumble preliminaries continue tonight_ Tuesday_ at TT the Bear's in Cambridge with Eddie Japan, Supermachine, Glenn Yoder and the Western States, and Blackbutton. The first band goes on at 9 p.m.

New Highway Hymnal soars at Rumble

Posted by Scott McLennan April 8, 2013 09:06 AM

Like a psychedelic tornado, The New Highway Hymnal swept up night 1 of the Rock 'n' Roll Rumble Sunday at TT the Bear's in Cambridge.

The Okay Win, Cancer Killing Gemini, and Velah rounded out the first night of the 24-band competition, presenting four stylistically diverse entries.

But there was no denying the sheer energy of the New Highway Hymnal, a raw-sounding three-piece that bounds through garage punk and psych-rock. Song felt like they were on the verge of flying apart until the very end when the band did just let everything collapse into feedback. I wasn't a judge, but the New Highway Hymnal earned the highest marks on my tally Sunday.

Though I'm keeping an eye on the Okay Win; that band's three-guitar approach throws some melodic heft and rhythmic depth into their indie-pop underpinnings.

The Rumble continues tonight_ Monday_ at TT's with Endation, the Deep North, Herra Terra, and Camden.

Krey's song for Sandy Hook

Posted by Scott McLennan April 6, 2013 02:44 PM

Around the time that I was reading about parents of children killed at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, CT, going to Washington, D.C. to plead with a Congress unwilling to tighten the nation's gun laws, this video for "Another Day" arrived in my inbox.

Not to bore you with my political views, but the NRA is poison, and the thought of parents showing photos of their children who were shot to death to legislators in hopes of bringing about sane gun laws pretty much infuriates me.

So, thank you Christoph Krey of McAlister Drive, for writing this song in response to Sandy Hook that speaks above the political static.

There's no missing the sadness in "Another Day," but there's also an air of hope that some how, some way, something like Sandy Hook won't happen again.

Ready to Rumble

Posted by Scott McLennan April 5, 2013 05:19 PM





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The 34th Rock 'n' Roll Rumble begins tomorrow at TT the Bear's in Cambridge.

Go, because you loved the Rat.

Go, because you fell for a Scott Ricciuti song.

Go, because you read the Phoenix.

Go, because you listened to WBCN and WFNX.

Go, because we need our rock 'n' roll institutions, and rock 'n' roll institutions live in precarious times.

Most battles of the bands are cheesy affairs. The Rumble is not. It's as much a showcase as it is outright competition, taking a big umbrella approach that covers metal to Americana to electronica. It would welcome neo-metal Amer-onica if it could.

Rumble organizer Anngelle Wood of WZLX's  Boston Emissions local-music program, says she sifted through more than 80 possible contenders to build this year's class of 24 bands. Once a band has played a Rumble, it can never return to the arena, which makes every year a unique experience.

Here's the schedule for the preliminaries:

Sunday, April 7:  9 p.m. The Okay Win, 9:45 p.m. Cancer Killing Gemini, 10:30 p.m. The New Highway Hymnal, 11:15 p.m. Velah

Monday, April 8: 9 p.m. Endation, 9:45 p.m. The Deep North, 10:30 p.m. Herra Terra, 11:15 p.m. Camden

Tuesday, April 9: 9 p.m. Eddie Japan, 9:45 p.m. Supermachine, 10:30 p.m. Glenn Yoder and the Western States, 11:15 p.m. Blackbutton

Thursday, April 11: 9:30 p.m. Mount Peru, 10:15 p.m. Whitcomb, 11 p.m. Lifestyle, 11:45 p.m. Twin Berlin

Friday, April 12: 9:30 p.m. Coyote Kolb, 10:15 p.m. The Field Effect, 11 p.m. the Suicide Dolls, 11:45 p.m. White Dynomite

Saturday, April 13: 9:30 p.m. Parks, 10:15 p.m. Jack Burton vs. David Lo Pan, 11 p.m. Ruby Rose Fox, 11:45 p.m. the Daily Pravda

Judges vote on which bands advance out of the preliminaries each night.

The semifinals will happen Thursday, April 18 and and Friday, April 19.  Finals go down Friday, April 26

Everything happens at TT's, 10 Brookline St., Cambridge. For bios and music samples of this year's Rumblers, check out http://wzlx.cbslocal.com/rock-n-roll-rumble-2013/

Bridging the punk-metal divide

Posted by Scott McLennan April 4, 2013 08:20 PM

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Soul Remnants, l-r, Ryan Murphy, Colin Conway, Mitch Fletcher, Chad Armory, and Tom Preziosi

Aggressive music is like the proverbial line in the sand, a sonic taunt to stand with me or be against me.

But even so, some sort of historical aberration split the primordial mosh pit into punk and metal camps that sometimes don't get along so well.

Troy Schoeller grew up in South Florida - pretty much ground zero for death metal.

"I was a punk rock kid, I wasn't into metal," he says. So no wonder he ended up in the healthy punk and hardcore environs of Boston where he now sings for Razors in the Night.

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Razors in the Night singer Troy Schoeller and bassist Swid

But what Schoeller and others found here is that the underground for loud is not so divided. Which is why you can have something like the "Punk VS Metal" series, the third installment of which happens Saturday, April 6, at the Middle East nightclub, 472 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge.

"It's like two different animals in the same jungle," says Soul Remnants drummer Colin Conway. He agrees with Schoeller that in Boston, the line, for fans and musicians alike, isn't firm between metal and punk.

Soul Remnants and Sexcrement will be repping the metal, while Razors in the Night and the Trans Fats give it up for punk at the show Saturday. The first band goes on at 9:30 p.m.

FULL ENTRY

Await Rescue hammers 'Everyone'

Posted by Scott McLennan April 3, 2013 03:22 PM

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Await Rescue, L-R, Matt Morse, Johnny Cutulle, Andrew Morse, and Corey Fyfe (Photo by Jessica Armendariz)

Await Rescue's new E.P. "Everyone You Know" is unvarnished hard rock. I waited for the gimmick. The ironic cover. The maybe-we-need-a-ballad limp spot. Or one of those novelty choruses Buckcherry is so good at.

Nothing. Just solid, speaker-rattling rock. Tears of joy splattered my Led Zeppelin, Foo Fighters, and Audioslave records.

Await Rescue celebrates the release of "Everyone You Know" Friday, April 5, at Church, 69 Kilmarnock St., Boston. The show is at 8 p.m. with Amos Blood, The Life Electric, and Mammother

Bassist Corey Fyfe is the the new recruit joining singer Johnny Cutulle, guitarist Andrew Morse, and drummer Matt Morse in the group. And while the band keeps everything pretty heavy, "Everyone You Know" isn't monochrome.

"Stars and Suns" and "All She Needs" bring down the tempos without sacrificing any of the fuzz 'n' buzz. For blinding fury, the band serves up "Thanks, But No Thanks." "Better Off" builds on a heavy-hitting blues riff and primal beat. And shades of Page linger in the urgency of "Built to Roam."

The title track is where the band pulls it all together, opening with a few verses of deceiving calm that slowly turns to rage as Cutulle uncorks an indictment. It's all a little dark and murky, but the energy just soars as the song barrels along.

Nothing fussy here, nothing over thought or overwrought. And definitely no gimmicks. Except this one: You can snag this 6-song set for free here

Rapplesauce serves up funky goodness

Posted by Scott McLennan April 2, 2013 02:17 PM

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Rapplesauce convenes Friday at the Middle East for a CD release show

The secret to great funk is its ability to make you stop thinking. Great funk simply makes you feel. I probably listened to Rapplesauce's "Good For You" a dozen times before I actually stopped to pick apart all the different ingredients going into the mix, so by that measure alone, this is funk done right.

And after talking with Rapplesauce ringleader Sam Ravenna, sounds like he didn't over think the process either.

"Every person I worked with is someone I really love as a player and as a person. I just let them do what they do, and that's where the record's sound comes from," Ravenna says. "There's really no other way to do it but organically."

And in that manner, these young players tapped into all of funk's history, drawing up the R&B influence of James Brown's funk, the jazz overtones of the Meters' funk, the soul of Parliament's funk, and hard edge of Funkadelic's funk.

Rapplesauce celebrates the release of "Good for You" Friday, April 5, at the Middle East in Cambridge. The show is upstairs in the Middle East, and doors open at 8 p.m. All Good Feel Good Collective and the Hornitz are also playing.

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The Bynars drop "Fun"

Posted by Scott McLennan April 2, 2013 10:29 AM

I just had a blissful break listening to "All I Wanna Do is Have Some Fun Tonight," the new single from the Bynars. The blast of whirling synth-pop has enough tone and texture shifts to keep you hooked for the whole 12-minute jam.

The trio celebrates the single's release April 24 at Great Scott in Allston. The single is available as a free download.

About the author

Scott McLennan is a Boston Globe music correspondent and previously wrote a music and entertainment column for the Worcester Telegram & Gazette for 15 years. After seeing the band Boston in the Boston Garden as a teenager he never looked back and eventually figured out how to be a professional fan. Scott is very good at writing in the dark. This blog is an ongoing discussion about music happening in and around Boston. Scott will be leading the trek across genres looking for new releases and hot shows as well as just checking in with the people who make Boston such a great place to listen. More »

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