Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Other Bands that Rock

Collin here - meant to mention that I've seen several really good bands here in NYC lately. Last Wednesday I went to Arlene's Grocery and saw a band called Harvard from North Carolina, and a band called Hotel of the Laughing Tree from I'm-not-sure-where. But they were both really good, I highly recommend checking them out. Then last Thursday night a saw another amazing band from Montreal, called The City Streets. I ended up talking to those guys and hanging out with them all night, I had a total blast. I also caught their shortened set (long story) at Lit Lounge Friday night and their set at Shea Stadium (no, the little DIY art/music venue, not the baseball park which no longer exists!) in Brooklyn before they had to head back to Canada for a couple shows up there.

Dan and I went from The City Streets' gig over to Trash Bar to catch The Brooklyn What, who closed out the night with the last set of the evening. I had seen them once before at Goodbye Blue Monday in Brooklyn, and last Saturday they were even more amazing. They had a great crowd that was as into their music as any I've seen in NYC in a long time, played incredibly well with shocking energy throughout, and left everyone out of breath and in awe. I give them a "Well, done!" and encourage people to check them out.

Last night I was at Arlene's Grocery again (damn, I love that place...can't wait to play it May 8!) and saw a band I liked called Waves & Legs. It was a cool show to watch, because there were lots of of the two frontmen/singers/guitarists and the bass player were reading notes off music stands for the songs (not the first time I've seen that, but it always throws me a, learn your songs, maybe? I paid, um, 8 dollars...?). One of the frontmen (the one reading notes) broke his B string in the first song and didn't have a back-up, so the soundman ran down and handed him a Tele. Then the other frontman's guitar strap broke, and the only other one he had was too short for him, so he played the rest of the set cradling the neck of his guitar against his own neck, and playing the fretboard a few inches from his chin. But it was cool music...they used a lot of two-part harmonies, had some clever a cappella sections, and had a jammy streak that wasn't too self-indulgent and pretty much rocked. I'm also not wild about their band name, but I wouldn't mind seeing them again. They write good songs and have a great vibe on stage. Oh, I should mention the drummer was frickin' incredible, one of the best I've seen in NYC in a while.

Last night we had rehearsal for our other band Atomic Shotgun and worked on some new songs we're really excited about. I keep listening to the record we just finished with that band this past weekend and losing my mind - it sounds so good!

I'm scheduled to see our old friends in The Whores, The Naked Heroes and Runny at Trash Bar tonight. It's been a long week and I'm pretty tired. We'll see if I make it and if I do how long I last...

Monday, March 29, 2010

Acoustic Set, Live DVD Show and Hammer Meets Fire Release

Hey Collin here. Just wanted to say I had a great time rushing out after Victor Bravo rehearsal and playing the acoustic night at Common Ground in NYC last night. I played "Spin Cycle" and "Scary Mary" off the new VB record Hammer Meets Fire, "Make the Escape" off Sky Full of Messages, and then was joined by my Atomic Shotgun bandmate Scott Holcomb for yet another different version of "Beautiful Wanderer," which will be on both the next (post-HMF) Victor Bravo record and the forthcoming debut LP from Atomic Shotgun. The sound system at Common Ground is just amazing, and the people there were super-friendly. I had a really great night. I also enjoyed kickass sets from Matty D, whose song "Private Ryan" is a new favorite of mine, and Scott Holcomb, who was generous enough to play "Lookout Mountain," one of my all-time favorite Drive-By Truckers tunes, and a guitar/viola set from two very talented ladies who closed out the night.

Dan and I are splitting our time these days between Victor Bravo and Atomic Shotgun, and it is so much fun to be in both these outfits that are both going full-blast. Atomic Shotgun finished recording and mixing the last 3 songs (of 10 total) for our debut LP this past weekend, and I am so pleased with what we've done. I feel like I want to thank our engineer and co-producer Ian Love every day for the rest of my life, for being so amazing at what he does, for understanding what both bands were about nearly instantaneously, and helping us sound our absolute best on these records.

On the Victor Bravo side, Dan and I continue to burn it up in rehearsals, preparing for some yet-to-be-announced touring in the April/May/June-ish timeframe, and our big blow-out show on Saturday, May 8 at Arlene's Grocery in New York City. Arlene's is one of our all-time favorite places to play and we will be filming the performance for a live DVD. We need everyone in the 5 boroughs, everyone in bus/train/driving distance of New York, and everyone who can afford to fly into Newark, LaGuardia or JFK to come into town and get to Arlene's for this one. It'll be one for the history books.

Finally, our new record and first full-length LP, Hammer Meets Fire, will have its official physical release one week from today on April 5. We are really excited to get this puppy out into the ears of the world. If you're someone we've sneak-released it to and you dig it, please help us spread the word. I checked the cover of Rolling Stone this week again and we're still not on the cover. I don't know what's wrong with those guys, they definitely need somebody to give them a head's up. :)

Until next time keep rockin', you know we will.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

OurStage Quarterfinals

Doing pretty well at Ourstage at the moment. "Into Debt" off the new album is in the Top 100 Punk list for the month, with quarterfinals voting starting now. If you like that sort of thing (listen to two random songs for a few seconds, pick which one is better, rinse-and-repeat) consider going to vote in their Punk category and you'll see us at some point.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

On Air at WBGU, WSVN

At WBGU Bowling Green Ohio last week, our new album Hammer Meets Fire cracked the Top-5 most played albums in the Punk Department for the week. (One step behind Flogging Molly, the sons-of-bitches.) Thanks to Matt and the guys!

And, our friend Eric at WSVN in Illinois get the new CD Hammer Meets Fire on the air, with the note, "ROCKIN' as usual.. thanks guys!" No, thank you, Eric. :-)

Other radio adds for the week -- Radio Crystal Blue in Brooklyn NY, WOZQ Northampton MA, Outsight Radio Waterford MI, WRSU Rutgers in NJ, Westcott Radio in Mattydale NY, and Radio DePaul U. in Chicago. Kick ass.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Another Binge

The video for our song "Binge" is currently in the OurStage Top 100 Hard Rock Videos. Big thanks to Ken Shadford who created that for us 2 years back now. Pretty great that as we release our new CD "Hammer Meets Fire", people are also discovering our older stuff. Yowza!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

On Air at WESU

The new Victor Bravo CD Hammer Meets Fire just got added into the new-release rotation at Wesleyan University, 88.1 FM WESU in Middleton CT. We have it on good authority that the music director officially labelled the disk "two-piece kicking it like it's the 60's, 80's and 90's - for lovers of ROCK".

Yeah, screw the 70's!! :)

Monday, March 1, 2010

VB Ends #8 in OurStage Punk

Well, the monthly voting ended at OurStage with our song "Into Debt" finishing at #8 in Punk (out of 295 or something like that). Of course, winning would be best, but it's still a Top 10 for Feb-2010 and we like that. Thanks to anyone who went and judged to help us out!