I'm pretty sure you're all aware about Movember and what the site is doing for it. I'm a pretty hairy dude (Except on my head...thanks Wagner gene pool) so it should be interesting to see how this turns out. If you scour the interwebs, you can find n00dz (just kidding), but you can actually find what I look like when I have a 2-3 month beard that was untouched.
Drive A are young guns to the music biz, but be warned that they'll be on your radar very soon. I had the opportunity to catch their set when they played to no one at Bamboozle '09, and ever since then I've kept my eye on them. They have scored tour spots with The Used, HIM, the Bamboozle Roadshow, Bullet For My Valentine/Escape The Fate and more; the band has been gaining fans that normally wouldn't follow a band like this. The best part about them: their age range is 18-21. They have such a sensible and understanding view of the industry and its workings. Their music is fast paced, energetic, I don't give a sh*t punk rock...something we're all desperately missing nowadays.
They let me sit down and listen to their new album and I can only describe it in one way: wow. It's 13 balls to the wall tracks, and not a single song about love. Standout tracks (In my mind) include "Young Cunts," "Robbery," "Empty Pages," and "Dead End Lives." Themes of songs include going over to Europe and experiencing the people, band sluts (Band-Aids; yes, that's an Almost Famous reference), and many other relatable topics. The underlying message: to break out of conformity and speak your mind. One of the more impressive things about the album is that it was tracked live. The band doesn't miss a step the entire time. Singer Bruno Mascolo brings to mind a younger sounding Strike Anywhere or Anti-Flag with his scratchy delivery. The guitar tones are muddy but define their sound rather than distract the listener and give it character. It's clear the band takes a lot of inspiration from the aforementioned Anti-Flag and other bands like Bad Religion, The Ramones, and more. This band is a definite winner, be on the lookout for the new album soon.
First guests: John Mayer, Neon Trees, Linkin Park, The National
I wish I had an older brother. Someone to look up to, model myself after that person, etc. However, I fill the shoes of being the big brother. Sometimes I feel like I've accomplished that, but other times it seems like I've fallen well short of what the standard of being a big brother entails.
I took a trip to NYC yesterday to get to know more about FUSE's newest TV show called "A Different Spin." It's a format we're somewhat familiar with; it contains artist interviews, performances, fan questions, and the standard music talk show fare that we've seen over the last several years (TRL, Steven's Untitled Rock Show, The Henry Rollins Show). But this is where it gets different. You have two hosts: Mark Hoppus of Blink 182 and comedian Amy Schumer. It's not just your cookie-cutter entertainment show, there are panel discussions, field correspondents and interactive content that keeps the viewer engaged.
Where does that lead paragraph fall into place with this blog? Hoppus gives the aura of an older brother. Wise, yet down to earth. Accomplished but not one to brag. He is open to new ideas and willing to try new things. He didn't sit in the back of the room the entire time on his cell phone. He brought the conversation to the party. He talks to you as if he's your best friend, which should make relating to him very easy when he's hosting the show. Instead of being asked questions, he turned the table on everyone, asking for new music and asking about our past jobs that got us to that meeting. (Note: He even made fun of me for being underage since everyone was drinking and I couldn't. I was the youngest one there by at least 6-7 years).
After having the chance to sit down and have dinner with Mark, Amy and some amazing people at FUSE (Jessica, David, Lauren) I got the impression that this show isn't a forced venture. It's not a bunch of people in suits telling Mark and Amy to read a script verbatim and dictating who they have on the show. Mark and Amy have a natural chemistry together, even at the dinner you could tell that they get along so well.
"From the first day I met Mark, we were like brother and sister. We just trashing and making fun of each other," said Schumer. This electricity from the dynamic duo should translate well onto television, their witty and sometimes sophomoric banter should create lively discussions with the guests on the show.
Mark revealed how bands are selected: he has complete trust over the producers/writers because he feels that they have an amazing taste in music. He will bring in bands that he enjoys as well, however there is one rule to the show. "As long as they (The bands) are passionate about what they do then we'd love to have them on." He also added that while there will be a lot of popular bands on the show, he is excited about the possibility of working with "baby bands" if he feels they could do well on the show.
A segment of the show that allows the fans to get their own questions asked is called Question Mark. Fans can submit questions and 2 will be selected every episode for the hosts to discuss. While Hoppus said he can't guarantee you'll get an actual answer, he said it brings about chatter from everyone on screen.
Don't slack on Schumer either. She's not just a comedian who was cast to tie up the loose ends and keep the show moving smoothly. She's a music lover herself: her tastes range from Wu Tang and Mos Def to Arcade Fire and Sleigh Bells to classic rock. Her versatile taste in music should allow for her and Mark to play off of each other when interviewing the bands that come onto the show. She said her favorite parts of the show so far have been the live performances and hanging out with Mark.
It seems like A Different Spin is headed in the right direction. While the concept isn't the most original, it appears that the show should bring a breath of fresh air to an idea that's had a proven record of success in the past. Be sure to tune in for the first episode!
PS - A big thank you to Mark, Amy, and everyone at FUSE for the opportunity!
One of my projects for my class is to use a Twitter account. Out of the 15 or so students, I'm the only one that actively uses it. HOWEVER, the teacher is going to give certain credit based on how many followers I have. It doesn't make sense, but I would appreciate it if everyone would follow me. Just go here.
I got to see Terrible Things (Universal Motown Records; Fred of TBS, Andy Jackson of Hot Rod Circuit, and Josh of Coheed and Cambria) last night. This is a rock album, not meant for little kids. The sound is huge, I can definitely hear this being in an arena-type setting. Be on the lookout and check these guys out on tour when you can. You'll regret it if you don't.