Thursday, August 29, 2013

Ticket Giveaway - Savages - 9.11.13 - Mr Smalls - Show Preview - Concert Preview

Savages will be making an appearance next Wedensday, 9.11 at Mr Smalls Theater in Millvale. The English quartet are making their first appearance here in Pittsburgh with much buzz from the blogosphere along with mainstream media. The band is touring behind their debut album Silence Yourself which has received rave reviews from both Pitchfork, Stereogum and so many more. We are happy to be giving away a pair of tickets to the show. As usual just email us at with your name to enter.

From their press:

Savages are from London and the singer, Jehnny Beth (real name: Camille Berthomier) is from France.Guitarist Gemma Thompson had come up with the name for the band and had been discussing the idea with singer, Jehnny Beth, for almost a year. Thompson says the band's name was derived from books, such as Lord of the Flies, that she read when she was younger. The band was eventually formed in October 2011 and they had their first gig in January 2012 supporting rock band British Sea Power. Their manager John Best also manages Sigur Ros. The Observer has said of Savages: "it's not exactly sexy, it's not funny and they're not going to be rolling around in mud like the Slits. But it's the closest thing to art that "post-punk"... has offered in a while". The New Musical Express described their performances as "frottage-inducingly intense affairs".

The group's first released tracks, a double A-side in June 2012, were "Flying to Berlin" and "Husbands" on the Pop Noire label.The Guardian wrote: "Husbands makes us dream of what it must have been like to have been around to hear, in real time, the debut releases by Public Image Ltd, Magazine, Siouxsie and the Banshees and Joy Division, to feel, as those incredible records hit the shops, that unearthly power and sense of a transmission from a satellite reality." In October, their concert at the CMJ Music Marathon in New York received good reviews. TheChicago Reader noted that their set is "influenced by Siouxsie & the Banshees, but with an anthemic quality that makes me think of PJ Harvey and heavy doses of the rhythmic jaggedness and angularity of British postpunk."

Show begins at 8p with doors at 7p. Tickets are $15 and can be found here.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Ticket Giveaway - Pinback - 9.6.13 - Mr Smalls - Show Preview - Concert Preview

Pinback will be making an appearance next Friday, 9.6 at Mr Smalls Theater in Millvale. The essential indie pop band has been creating masterful albums for over 15 years. Based out of San Diego, the band consists of just two main musicians, Armistead Burwell Smith IV and Rob Crow. Their last album was released this passed year on Temporary Residence Records entitled Information Retrieved. We are happy to be giving away a pair of tickets to the show. As usual just email us at to enter. Winner will be selected at random.

From their press:

We have a tendency to take consistency for granted. Like a sunny Southern California day, Pinback have delivered record after record of mightily addictive indie pop since their inception in the late 1990s. Perhaps too melancholic and thoughtful to function as escapist entertainment, that same sense of depth is what made them one of the most reliable bands in indie rock’s three-decade history. On one hand, their fifth album, Information Retrieved, is the logical and accessible realization of a sound Pinback have been developing and refining for over a decade. However, that consistency that we’ve taken for granted is what makes Information Retrieved such a euphoric surprise; their finest and most fully realized album, a dozen years deep into a career that includes bona fide modern classics like “Good To Sea” and Summer In Abaddon. Simply put, this is better than we ever could have expected. They could have coasted on automatic pilot to another lauded album that likely would have made it onto plenty of year-end lists, but instead they shot the moon, and the result is a major triumph.

The touchstones are still there: Zach Smith‘s stunningly unique bass guitar acrobatics driving both rhythm and melody in lock-step unison; the incredible immediacy of Rob Crow‘s voice that could make a phone book sound compelling; and the musical and lyrical interplay between the two of them that made Pinback so special in the first place. The difference now is their exquisite control over dynamics and a greater emotional resonance throughout. It’s the most complete and soulful Pinback album by a fair distance, the finest moment in the career of a band whose unfettered brilliance we’ve come to count on, but will never again take for granted.

Show begins at 8p with doors at 7p. Tickets are $16 and can be found here

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Ticket Giveaway - Adam Ant - 8.23.13 - Stage AE - Show Preview - Concert Preview

Adam Ant will be appearing next Friday, 8.23 at Stage AE. The British pop stall worth hasn't toured or put out a proper album in over 17 years. This year Adam Ant release his first album in almost two decades with a Fiona Apple-esque title Adam Ant is the Blueblack Hussar in Marrying the Gunner’s Daughter. The great divide from the last release date was due in part to Adam's mental state and hospitalization. Taking an open stance, the singer/songwriter speaks about his bipolar disorder, depression and how it's affected his music and family. He finds it as a way to inform his fans and audience at large. We are happy to be giving away a pair of tickets to the show. As usual, just email us with your name to to enter.

From his press:

Fans looking forward to new wave icon Adam Ant's first new album in 17 years endured a few obstacles before Adam Ant is The Blueblack Hussar in Marrying The Gunner’s Daughter became a reality today. Production problems caused Ant to postpone both his spring U.S. tour and the album release in 2012. When things settled, he rescheduled his concert appearances to the fall that year and finished the album for its release today. He will be back on tour in North America later in 2013 with his band, The Good, The Mad and the Lovely Posse.The new creation is is a collection of 17 songs about things that have happened in Ant's life and things that interest him with collaborations from longtime songwriting partner Marco Pirroni and Boz Boorer (Morrissey).

His first track release from Adam Ant is The Blueblack Hussar in Marrying The Gunner’s Daughter, "Cool Zombie," features Ant singing with a southern drawl. The video reveals that not only can he still dance, the lead Ant makes the combination of a pirate hat and cowboy boots look even cooler than it sounds to his fans. He used to live in the southern town of Dayton, Tennessee, where he took a detour from the spotlight and raised his family: On being away from the studios and while living in Tennessee, Ant says he loved the family life, but itched to make a comeback in recent years:

“My daughter, Lily Caitlin, was born there. I decided that I was going to be like a house husband, so I was with her and changing nappies. That's the hardest work I've ever done, the child-rearing thing. But as Lily got older, I started to think about music. I missed it - the creative process and the live side of it." The title of the album is a dual reference: "The Blueback Hussar" is an homage to the light cavalry of Hungary during the 15th century while "Marrying the Gunner's Daughter" is an old naval term for being punished as a metaphor for feeling trapped as he did under a major record label contract for many years.Adam Ant is the Blueblack Hussar in Marrying the Gunner's Daughter is available through Amazon and other digital outlets via his own label, Blueblack Hussar Records.

Show begins at 8p with doors at 7p. Tickets are $27.50 and can be found here

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Local Spotlight - The Long Knives - Local Artist - August 2013

Our local spotlight for the month of August 2013 focuses on The Long Knives. Started as a solo project, the band became a duo after a short time. The 90's indie throw back recently release their debut LP entitled Holy Ghost Points. WJ was kind enough to answer our normal spotlight questions about their beginnings, challenges of Pittsburgh and how they create their music. You can find their new LP here and here

How did the band come together? Were you all friends that went to school? or?

I (WJ) started The Long Knives as my solo project in 2007 and paired up with sNk in March of 2009. We have had a bassist in and then out, and now it is just the two of us, although we may add another bassist down the road if we can find one who can fit the sound well.

How would you describe your sound to someone who has never heard you?

It's hard. So many different influences and people pick that up in the music. It's hard, raw, honest music with feeling. People want to categorize as Indie or Post-Punk, we just call it Psychiatric Rock.

Are you all originally from the Pittsburgh area? Families here as well?

I am from Pittsburgh and I have family here. sNk is from Donegal and all his family are out that way.

Do you all create music full time or is this more of a part time venture?

We would love to be able to do it full time, and we put a lot into it. Maybe down the road, but for now, we have some other obligations which take up a bit of our time as well, but music is on my mind all the time, and it is like a second full time job at times with all the work you have to put into it being primarily a DIY group and such.

Do you have day jobs?

You could call em that!

How do you create your music? What is the song writing process?

A lot of the songs are ones that I have been doing for years. I have been playing nd writing for close to 30 years, I just never started doing anything with it until about 10 years ago or so. A lot of the songs are old ones that I have recorded a skeleton of on the acoustic, then reworked with sNk to fit the sound. For the new ones, almost everything is written on an Alvarez 12 string, as I do not play any 6 string instruments with the band, all 12 strings. I write so much lyrical stuff, it never has a problem being a content filler if I need one, although almost everything we do is very conceptual in its nature and belongs to a certain "group" of songs I piece together for different idea structures. We have a good combination of older and newer tunes.

What are your goals for the band? What would you like to accomplish? Are you trying to get signed to a label?

Yea, we would love to do this full-time if we could and just play music for a living, but that is the pipe dream of most acts, and we will make every effort to do what we do without selling our souls to the biz. I would love to get signed to a decent label as long as e can put out some tunes to get to the masses so they can take em in. It just takes a lot of time, effort, and dedication to the craft, and I think we have that to a certain extent. We are looking to ramp up the shows i the near future, get on with a few National and International festivals, and start putting together some small tours throughout the course of the year. 

What advice would you give to local acts trying to make it?

To expand. Don;t just confine yourself to the Pittsburgh music scene, get it out there elsewhere as well. You have to make the choice to network and make the effort to meet people, this is what is is all about, and your friends you make playing music can have a lot to do with your own success. Also, go to shows, talk to other bands, stay for their sets, and get to know their songs. Support your fellow peeps in the city and across the world and do your own thing musically, don't let anyone tell you how to do it, be who you are. Your songs are your own gift to the world.

Have you all toured nationally? Or do you usually stay more regionally?

We haven't toured nationally here, but we have done some small tours in Germany/Holland the past couple of years and have played both a festival and a drunken bingo show over there as well. We have friends across the pond from my years being on MySpace and networking with a lot of different folks across the world, and we have had some terrific experiences over there. We are looking at putting a couple of National tours together in the near future, and getting back to Europe and expanding our schedule either late this year or some time next year, circumstances permitting. We are looking to push out more from the local scene and tail back to only a couple of shows a year in this area, it's time to make that move.

Being in the Pgh area, do you find it more difficult to try and succeed? What are some of the obstacles you face trying to create some success' in Pgh?

Yea, to be honest, it is brutal, and a lot of it has to do with the demographic. The problems you have in this area have a lot to do with the fact that bands are often playing to that 30+ crowd, and while they are graciously supportive and do care for your music, they are not the right market to be successful with it, and you need to hit the younger ages to be able to get that sound out there properly. We have played shows in Berlin and Hamburg to double and triple encores, and here, a lot of times people only come to see their friends play and then head on home, they don;t give the other acts much of a chance. I've been involved in this music scene in some capacity for over 25 years, and this has always been the case here, especially since a lot of the old venues like Graffiti and the Banana shut their doors. You really have to dig in here to be successful, as we have often experienced, you get that older crowd that says they are going to come and see your shows and then something comes up in their lives and they never show up. The scene has just become more and more fractured here over time as far as bands supporting one another as well, and who knows if that will ever get back to the right level, but I know we try, and I know we reach out to many acts in the city to network with us.

What are the positive benefits of being in the area?

Being able to remain close to family and friends, and plus the fact that it is a beautiful area, and is a place I have called home for a good portion of my life. We also have some great restaurants, great sports teams, and lots of various activities available to us in the region. Being able to go to Gooski's from time to time doesn't hurt either!

 Is there a venue you have enjoyed playing more than others in the area?

We have a lot of venues in the area we enjoy, but we have found that the ones South of the city tend to be where we are best received here. The Inn Termission Lounge in Southside and Tony from the club have always been great to us and we love playing there, of course, Gooski's, Club Cafe and the Smiling Moose have all been very supportive of TLK over the years, and they are venues we truly do look forward to playing. We really love the sound at 31st St. Pub as well, the girl who does the sound down there is aces. We would love to check out some more venues in the area which we haven't played yet, but we will get there at some point. The ones we give the thumbs down to are the Bloomfield Bridge Tavern and the Rock Room, we won't be returning to either one of those locations ever again.

You can find more information on the band at the below links:

Twitter - @thelongknives62

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Ticket Giveaway - Tony Lucca - Club Cafe - 8.18.13 - Show Preview - Concert Preview

Singer songwriter Tony Lucca will be appearing at Club Cafe on Sunday, August 18th. He will be playing both a early (6:30p) and late (10p) show on this day. Well known for appearing on the television show The Voice, the artist recently released his debut EP With The Whole World Watching which debuted in the Top 10 on the iTunes Pop Albums Chart. It was released on judge's (and singer) Adam Levine's label 222 Records. Lucca has put in over 20 years in the music business releasing seven previous albums, all of which led him to The Voice and his current success. We are happy to be giving away a pair of tickets to the show. As usual just email us your name to to enter. 

From his press:

Tony Lucca, who sang with Christina Aguilera as a youth and who had a break-out stretch on season two of "The Voice," has signed a deal with Adam Levine's 222 Records. He plans to begin recording late this year.The deal reunites Lucca with Levine, the Maroon 5 front man who worked as the singer's mentor through the spring on the NBC singing competition. Known for his covers of Jay-Z's "99 Problems" and the Britney Spears' hit " … Baby One More Time," Lucca took third place in the competition. Levine and Lucca collaborated on the Beatles' "Yesterday" which, Lucca tells Billboard, "was the impetus to do the whole thing. We had a good time working with each other. Ironically, it was an organic relationship (after the show). He didn't put too much stock in me not winning."

Lucca, who has released four full-length albums of his own material, joins 222 Records' roster, which includes Matthew Morrison, Diego Boneta and Rozzi Crane. His last release, "Under the Influence," was a collection of covers that came out in September 2011. Lucca began a cross-country tour just after Labor Day that will take him to more than three dozen cities where his shows are now a 50/50 split between covers and originals. "After the show ended we did a celebratory victory lap to say thank you to the fans," Lucca said from Orlando, Fla. "I had mapped out the fall tour (during the show's run. It's now the 'Chapter Two tour'." Between the victory lap and current tours, Lucca was able to work in songwriting trips to Los Angeles and Nashville to work with potential co-writers. "We have a solid arsenal -- a good dozen or so songs," he says.

Both shows begin at 6:30p and 10p with doors at 6p and 9:30p. Tickets are $12 and can be found here