Singer/songwriter Allan Rayman has just revealed his next run of live appearances. Dubbed “The Allan Rayman Show” – Allan and his band will be heading to 21 cities across North America. Launching in Portland, OR and making stops in major markets including, Los Angeles, Seattle, New York, Boston, Austin and Vancouver. A full list of dates and ticket information is below. The tour will have the Toronto-based singer/songwriter back in North America after performing to captivated crowds throughout Europe this past winter. Allan has been on the road in support of his latest musical project Harry Hard-On released late last year via Polydor UK/ Republic Records/KIDindaKorner/Universal Music Canada. “Rose,” the album’s debut single is currently in the Top 15 at Alternative Radio in Canada and quickly climbing the charts at U.S radio. Along with success on the airwaves Harry Hard-On has been met with critical praise from the press with Time Magazine heralding the track “Crush” writing,“Rayman’s voice contains multitudes: a rough ache, a smooth hum, a rock star’s confidence.” Rayman, who is known for his theatrical live performances and genre bending musical style recently gave followers a peak into his world when he released the music video for “Rose2” featuring clips from his trip to the Alaskan wilderness last fall, watch the video HERE. Those who want to get to know Rayman more can catch one of his shows throughout the U.S and Canada starting in May. Pre-sale tickets are available here [insert link] and tickets go on-sale March 22nd, here[insert link]. About Allan Rayman: Allan Rayman is a singer/songwriter. He is a young man. He has released four projects - Hotel Allan, Roadhouse 01, Courtney, and most recently Harry Hard-On which have given him somewhat of a cult following. The young man has played sold-out headline tours in the United States and Canada and has made a name for himself at major festivals including Bonnaroo, Lollapalooza, Ohana, Austin City Limits and Osheaga. Allan will play more festivals one day. Allan has seen success internationally with several European tours under his belt. Allan recently completed a headlining European tour and plans to embark on a North American tour this May. He has been to Alaska. Not much is known about the young man.$26.50
Portland’s Tango Alpha Tango is best experienced amid a crowded room of sweaty guitar junkies. Logically, then, a well-mixed live album is the next greatest thing. Captured last year at local recording space Banana Stand, the performance delivered by the quartet tackles a sprawling beast in 12 songs. From the first bluesy electric-guitar riff in “Kill & Haight” to the gritty energy of “Black Cloud,” the record not only translates frontman Nathan Trueb’s ability to write a good tune and dominate a guitar neck, but also the band’s flawless fusion of blues and rock with funky bass lines and psychedelic keys. Trueb explores his folkier singer-songwriter side on “Desert Snow,” a song composed simply of his scratchy, worn-in voice and supplementary fingerpicking. But with nearly half the songs on the set list running eight minutes or longer, many of the album’s gems surface when Trueb cracks them open with his guitar. In lengthy tracks like the trippy “In My Time of Dying” and the driving rock jam “Mona Lisa’s Death,” the frontman disassembles ideas, draws out phrases and slowly builds them up again. Although the album doesn’t quite hit with the impact of experiencing the band in the flesh, it comes pretty damn close$12 Adv.
With 2018’s Devouring Radiant Light (“DRL”), Skeletonwitch have succeeded where many bands have failed: they have reformulated their sound mid-career with dizzyingly triumphant results. Since the band’s inception, they have been known for blending and bending metal subgenres. Their collective love of Judas Priest, classic-era Metallica and Immortal has always been worn on their sleeves. However, it’s the band’s blacker leanings that have shifted to the forefront and altered the tenor of the through line on this latest offering.$20 Adv.
“If the world was a better place they would be playing to more people, and I think they can” – Robert Smith, The Cure From their unassuming origins as a group of school friends drawn together by a shared passion for music to the global touring force they have quietly become, The Twilight Sad’s ascent has been forged the old way with grit, graft and four exceptional studio albums. The Kilsyth group – based around the core duo of James Graham and Andy MacFarlane – seemed to emerge fully formed with their blindsiding 2007 debut Fourteen Autumns and Fifteen Winters but there has been an undeniable evolution throughout the critically acclaimed body of work they have since produced. “When we started this it wasn’t about anything other than making music that mattered to us,” James offers. “Four albums and countless tours later, our agenda is still to write something which is true, honest and exciting to ourselves, but we have also realised that what we’re doing matters to other people. When our music connects it can become as important to them as it is to us.” The band’s course was altered by a new alliance with The Cure which began in earnest with Robert Smith’s stirring cover of ‘There’s a Girl in the Corner’ in 2015. Two emotionally charged groups, generations apart yet undeniably cut from similar cloth. “We were in the typical cycle of recording a new album to tour every two years,” says Andy. “I had previously mentioned to Robert that if they ever needed a support band, we’d love to do it – not thinking he’d take me seriously. Not long after, he sent over some dates and asked if we were available. It was the perfect excuse to break up the routine we’d found ourselves in and all pretty surreal.” As sliding doors moments go, this was fate shaping material. It’s no understatement to say that The Cure’s mentorship has set the band on a trajectory we are yet to feel the full force of. Having scaled new heights on what ultimately became a year-long transcontinental trek with their idols, the band were uniquely placed to sketch out their intent for the next chapter. “I’d call all that a once in a lifetime experience, but it’s not an experience I ever dreamed of in my lifetime,” says James. “Getting onstage every night, on that level, playing our music and seeing people react – I’ve never expected to be in that situation. The fact that it was working was pretty crazy to experience. To know we could connect with even a tenth of that crowd is mind-blowing to me. It opened my eyes to the idea that what we’re doing has legs. If we keep doing what we’re doing we can keep on reaching higher.” “After a while, seeing how those songs were put together, it started to bleed into what we were doing,” Andy admits. “It gave us time to reflect and think quite carefully about what to do next. When we got back it was a case of trying to decide where to go with it.” The amicable departure of founding member Mark Devine meant that the band had to shed its skin to evolve once more in 2018; James and Andy officially brought long-time touring members Brendan Smith (The Blue Nile, The Unwinding Hours) and Johnny Docherty (Take a Worm For a Walk Week, RUNGS) in from the wings to help push The Twilight Sad to the next plateau. “I’ve always seen them as part of the band and it’s time to say that aloud,” James affirms. “The more you commit, the more you want to have your own influence and impact,” says Brendan, now six years into playing live with the band. “We didn’t know how it was going to work but at no point did it feel forced or uncomfortable. Quite the contrary – it felt like a natural transition for Johnny and I to be involved.” With a new label in their corner – Mogwai’s Rock Action Records – there’s a palpable sense that The Twilight Sad have arrived home. “Mogwai took us on tour early on, offered advice when we needed it, lent us gear to record and now we’ll officially be part of the Rock Action family,” says James. “They’ve been hugely influential and I’m excited to give something back for all the good faith they’ve had in us over the years.” As their focus returns to the international stage with two major tours in the offing, the band are as eager to connect with fans old and new as take strides into the unknown. “It feels like everything’s in uncharted territory at the moment,” Andy offers in summary. “Technology has drastically altered the landscape, it's given people more control over what they listen to.” James chimes in: “For all the damage the internet has done, I find the world a strange place. Rather than interact on devices with people, I’d rather get out there, see them, talk to them and play our music for them. We haven’t done that in a long time. I just want to be face to face with people.” --- Dave Kerr, Summer 2018$20
Black Marble formed in 2012 as an artistic extension of Chris Stewarts collection of songs and ideas. The name Black Marble took some time to arrive upon and is more than fitting. As a literal description of a material used to sculpt and build, its the fleeting notion of a one-time symbol of taste and affluence, frozen in a moment, slightly dusty and showing every smudge and mark. Started in a recording space in Bushwick, NY, Black Marble made their first EP, Weight Against the Door (Hardly Art) followed quickly by their chillingly moody and atmospheric debut full-length, A Different Arrangement(Hardly Art). With both early releases the band followed a familiar path stomped down by synth wave pioneers whose hand assembled sounds and DIY ethics paved the way for likeminded artists. While taking inspiration from late 70’s and early 80’s projects like Silicon Teens, Iron Curtain, Lives of Angels, and Solid Space, Black Marble dialed in on a clear understanding of its own specific sound. After the release of A Different Arrangement in the fall of 2012 there was an almost immediate clamoring from fans for a new album but they were made to wait several years, for good reason. With the end of the East Coast chapter of Stewart’s life on the horizon, Its Immaterial was recorded in a period of mental and physical transition. Trapped between spaces and unable to move on until the snow globe flurry of ideas floating around him settled just right. On September 30, 2016 Black Marble will release their second full-length, Its Immaterial, on Ghostly, and from a new locale, the West Coast. Still featuring Stewart at the helm along with select collaborators as supplementation, the bi-coastal shift lends a great deal to the overall feel of the new album. The light and dark elements of shadows. The salt and sting of evenings high tide sea spray. A beautiful thing left on a shelf too high to maintain. The general mood is that of creating something new, but going back in time to do it. Like attempting to flesh out a song that you woke up humming but cant find, because it doesnt exist yet.$13 Adv.
Riverside is a progressive rock band from Warsaw, Poland. It was founded in 2001 by friends Mariusz Duda, Piotr Grudziński († 2016), Piotr Kozieradzki and Jacek Melnicki, who shared a love for progressive rock and heavy metal. Riverside can be described as a stylistic blend of atmospheric rock and metal elements.$25
Hip-hop ambitions are often described in terms of "hunger", but no known MC has an appetite quite like Brotha Lynch Hung. This is not simply the peckishness of a seasoned artist still making music while his former contemporaries have long passed their sell-by date. This is the ravenous hunger of Mannibalector, Brotha Lynch Hung’s flesh-chomping, gore-streaked altered ego and the antagonistic protagonist at the dark heart of Coathanga Strangla, the genuinely stunning new album by Brotha Lynch Hung. Coathanga Strangla re-introduces listeners to the not so nice but strangely sympathetic guy they met on Lynch's 2010 album Dinner and a Movie. The "autocratic automatic reaper" instantly joined the entertainment biz pantheon of indelible killers like Mannibalector's cinematic predecessor, Silence Of The Lambs sicko Hannibal Lector. "I watch a lotta horror movies and I really love meat," says Lynch, "so I put that together and out came Mannibalector." Longtime fans will, of course, recognize these deviant tendencies. Brotha Lynch Hung's 1993 debut, 24 Deep (Black Market Records) found his "human meat pot luck" already underway (who can forget the image: "find your brain cookin' in a barbecue pit"?). The 1995 release of the Sacramento (CA) native's certified Gold classic, Season of da Siccness, followed and Lynch has released a steady stream of music ever since, making him an ideal match for the do-or-die work ethic of his current label home, Strange Music. Kansas City-based Strange Music is currently the most successful outfit in independent hip-hop and home to Tech N9ne. Dinner and a Movie was Lynch's first album released by Strange, but Tech N9ne and Brotha Lynch have history: Tech appeared on "187 On A Hook" from Lynch's Blocc Movement in 2001, and in 2006 Lynch delivered a standout verse on "My World" from Tech N9ne's Everready album. "Strange Music understands me, they've really given me a fresh start," says Lynch. "As strange as it sounds, I feel like I'm just getting going with my career." Make no mistake however: what feels like a fresh start for Lynch is coinciding with a high point in his artistic evolution. Always one to look to movies for inspiration, Lynch says that repeated viewings of the Hostel films had a direct effect on Coathanga Strangla. "Some horror movies are too ridiculous," he says, "but Hostel has a very realistic feeling. It's not scary like boo! — it's more like this could happen. That's an authenticity I'm going for in my music." It's that sense that gives Coathanga Strangla its compelling core. With its bowel-bothering bass line and toothpick percussion (courtesy of producer Michael “Seven” Summers), "Mannibalector" is a cannibal lecture (replete with requisite slaughter) the reveals the crucial facet of Lynch's artistry: his alter ego is not a two-dimensional creation but a character full of humanizing doubts, fears and paranoia. Allmusic.com's David Jeffries has noted Lynch's facility at going "from gross to scary to sympathetic and personal, and then back again, all without losing a step or trying your patience." When it comes to digesting Lynch's art however, it helps that his raps are leavened by what can only be called "gallows humor." Who else would refer to his manner of cooking victims as "Operation McPasta", as Lynch does on the new album's "Mannibalector"? While Brotha Lynch Hung is often credited as the originator of the rap genre known as "horrorcore", most so-called horrorcore rappers would be content with a standard disemboweling; Lynch goes all the way, a meal plan immortalized on the new album's "Spit It Out" wherein Lynch chortles: "If anything taste funny spit it out." "Friday Night" features Lynch's fellow rap madman C.O.S., thumping production by Michael “Seven” Summers, and Brotha Lynch's "body sweatin' like a Juggalo." "I love the Juggalos man," says Lynch of the cult-like, face-painted fans who have embraced him. "They're good people with good hearts who are looking for an outlet from life's pain. I can relate to that." Standout cut "Blinded By Desire" is a sadistic travelogue following Lynch as he drives from California's Bay Area southward towards Los Angeles ("524 miles to SoCal..." begins Lynch) where mayhem will undoubtedly ensue. Coathanga Strangla is the middle album in a conceptual trilogy, which began with Dinner and a Movie and is slated to conclude with 2012's Mannibalector. Each of the three albums has spawned three videos, which together will comprise the visual document of the terrifying times of Mannibalector. "The three albums and nine videos are about a rapper who's having a bad life and is about to give up on the world," explains Brotha Lynch Hung. "You can hear he's about to walk the thin line, past the thin line, and then go way over it." Join Brotha Lynch Hung as he continues to obliterate that line like no other artist can do.$20 Adv.
Foxwarren’s backstory reads like a page torn from the manual of rock & roll authenticity, as this group of siblings and childhood friends originally formed more than a decade ago. Growing up in scattered small towns across the Canadian prairies, Andy Shauf (guitars/keys/vocals), Dallas Bryson (guitar/vocals), and brothers Darryl Kissick (bass) and Avery Kissick (drums & percussion) eventually found themselves in Regina, Saskatchewan. The initial sessions for their self-titled debut began in the Kissicks’ parents’ farmhouse while they were away on vacation. Upon their return, Foxwarren were forced to relocate and recording resumed back in Regina in a rented house where the members lived as roommates. The band's name comes from the Kissick brothers’ family home in Foxwarren, Manitoba. Foxwarren initially bonded over Pedro the Lion and drew influence from The Band and Paul Simon. Now a decade in to the project, Shauf reflects on their debut release: “So much time and effort went into making this album; it's something I think we're all really proud of. My touring and recording schedule got pretty wild over the past three or four years, so it put the Foxwarren album on the backburner. Making the album was such an enjoyable time - the collaboration and frustration of it all. All of us trying to make something better than we previously had. I'm excited to get it out into the world and have other people listen to it. We've been a band for 10 years or so and never properly released an album, so this is special for the four of us.” The self-titled album will be released on November 30, 2018 via ANTI- Records. The infectious first single “Everything Apart” is built around a robotic bass line and came together very quickly. “We wrote it late one night,” remembers Darryl, “Andy was home between tours, and the skeleton of the song came together really quickly. This one felt like a real experiment and was almost left off the album; it seemed like an outlier.” In contrast, the second single “To Be” was one of the first songs written for the project. “We tinkered with it for ages and ended up drastically reworking it the weekend it was recorded. We knew early on that it was going to be the opening song on the record,” states Darryl. “It was a guitar riff that I'd been playing for a few years at least, trying to figure out what to do with it,”adds Shauf. “It went through quite a few versions if I remember correctly. Foxwarren have a bad habit of never finishing vocal melodies and lyrics before we finish the music, so it made it a bit tricky and ended up being overhauled at the last minute.” Subtle and thoughtful, it draws parallels to frontman Andy Shauf’s solo work while leaning on collaboration and looseness rather than Shauf’s meticulous arrangements. Where Shauf leaves space for orchestration, Foxwarren take time to ruminate on passages and themes. Propped up by warm driving rhythms and a familiar voice, and coloured with soft electronics and coarse guitars, it’s a record that ultimately hinges on sincerity. It captures the feeling of friends pushing each other, of a band looking inward for inspiration instead of outward for influence.$20 Adv.
It's rare that a band's debut album sounds as confident and self-assured as Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever's Hope Downs. To say that the first full-length from the Melbourne quintet improves on their buzz-building EPs from the last few years would be an understatement: the promise those early releases hinted at has become fully realized here, with ten songs of urgent and passionate guitar pop that elicit warm memories of bands past, from the Go-Betweens' jangle to the charmingly lo-fi trappings of New Zealand's Flying Nun label. But don't mistake Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever for nostalgists: Hope Downs is the sound of a band finding its own collective voice. The hard-hitting debut is a testament to Rolling Blackouts C.F.’s tight-knit and hard-working bonafides: prior to forming the band in 2013, singers/guitarists Fran Keaney, Tom Russo, and Joe White had played together in various garage bands, dating back to high school. "Over the years, we built up our own sound and style, guitar pop songs with bits of punk and country” says Keaney. “Then when we started this band, with Joe Russo [Tom’s brother] on bass, Marcel [Tussie, Joe White's then-housemate] on drums, we had this immediate chemistry. We started to let the songs go where they wanted to go”. The band's first gigs included friends' bars and old shopfronts. After a split EP with You Yangs (another Russo brother's band), released in the form of a frisbee, they self-released the Talk Tight EP in 2015, with Sydney-based record label Ivy League giving it a wider release the following year. Talk Tight garnered plaudits from critics, including legendary rock scribe Robert Christgau. In 2017, Sub Pop would join the effort, helping to release The French Press EP, bringing the band's chugging and tuneful non-linear indie rock to the rest of the world as they settled into their sound with remarkable ease. Hope Downs was largely written over the past year in the band's Melbourne rehearsal room where their previous releases were also written and recorded. The band's core trio of songwriters— Fran Keaney, Joe White, and Tom Russo—hunkered down and wrote as the chaos of the world outside unavoidably seeped into the songwriting process. "We were feeling like we were in a moment where the sands were shifting and the world was getting a lot weirder. There was a general sense that things were coming apart at the seams and people around us were too”. Russo explains. “The songs on this album are like a collection of postcards about wider things that were going on through the lens of these small characters." The album title, taken from the name of a vast open cut mine in the middle of Australia, refers to the feeling of “standing at the edge of the void of the big unknown, and finding something to hold on to.” With recording sessions largely taking place in the Australian winter of 2017, the band escaped the Melbourne frost and headed to drummer Marcel Tussie’s hometown in Northern New South Wales. "We were right at the foot of this beautiful mountain next to a creek," says White. "We could play out into the bush through the night”. "We didn't really want to record in a studio," says Keaney. “We thought we'd get away up North, somewhere where it was warm, and record the songs live in the same room. We wanted to make sure it sounded like us," White explains. With the help of engineer/producer Liam Judson and his portable setup, the band recorded and co-produced these ten guitar pop gems over the course of two weeks. Hope Downs possesses a robust full-band sound that's all the more impressive considering the band's studio avoidance tendencies. If you loved Talk Tight and The French Press, you certainly won't be disappointed here—but you might also be surprised at how the band’s sound has grown. There's a richness and weight to these songs that was previously only hinted at, from the skyscraping chorus of ‘Sister's Jeans’ to the thrilling climax of album closer ‘The Hammer’. The first single ‘Mainland’ follows Tom Russo’s pilgrimage to the island of his grandparent’s birth, reflecting on his own love and privilege while a refugee crisis unfolds not far away, while second cut ‘Talking Straight’ wonders “where the silence comes from, where the space originates”, and suggests loneliness be faced together. And then there's the sprawling overture ‘An Air Conditioned Man’, which portrays the slow burning panic of a salaryman and features some beautifully tricky guitar work weaving in and out of frame as well as a surprisingly effective spoken-word section from Tom Russo during its closing moments. “As the world around him gets faker and faker, he realises he's getting further away from the idealism of his youth." Indeed, Hope Downs is as much about the people that populate the world around us—their stories, perspectives, and hopes in the face of disillusionment—as it is about the state of things at large. It's a record that focuses on finding the bright spots at a time when cynicism all too often feels like the natural state. Rolling Blackouts C.F. are here to remind us to keep our feet on the ground—and Hope Downs is as delicious a taste of terra firma as you're going to get from a rock band right now.$15 Adv.
“Floater can pull into any town off the beaten touring path...and draw hundreds of rabid fans from age 5 to 50.” - Casey Jarman, Willamette Week With intense and unforgettable live performances, Floater is legendary for their ability to bring music fans out in droves for over two decades. Floater’s sound is rife with progressive, psychedelic rock, reggae and pop. A rare and truly progressive rock band, Floater is well-known for a sound that creates a push-me, pull-me effect on the audience. The band alternately excites and serenades the crowd with their unique range from high-energy heavy rock numbers to melodious ballads. Ask any longtime fan, a Floater show is an experience that rivals a rite of passage, blistering the soul with their epic storytelling and engaging stage presence.$15 Adv.