While SXSW 2014 may have been marred by some tragic events, it also remains a wondrous event loaded with more incredible music than you could shake a really big stick at. From new faces like the Strypes and Back To Back to legendary names like King Buzzo and the Cynics, 2014 will be another festival for the books.
Here are some of our musical highlights.
Even though the lineup for the 2014 Vans Warped Tour is all fleshed out, there will still be plenty of late additions and changes as it draws closer to its June 13 Kickoff.
Those of you who'll be catching the tour from June 18-22 will have the chance to take in Emilie Autumn's Asylum Experience. The musician, author, artist and actress, who has made three studio albums and a pair of instrumental albums as well as collaborating with a ton of musicians from Die Warzau to Hole will be creating an interactive environment featuring live music, burlesque performances, circus sideshow attractions, and theatre, all based on her alternate reality known as "The Asylum For Wayward Victorian Girls" (which also happens to be the name of her 2010 novel.
It sounds like a pretty sweet opportunity for those dates, and will hopefully serve as the basis of a full headlining tour.
In addition, in the realm of the "paying your dues" department, Cincinnati alt-rockers BoyMeetsWorld have announced that they've been named the catering band for the 2014 tour. In exchange for busting their humps day in and day out, slinging food for everyone else on the tour, they'll have the opportunity to play some dates. It's sort of like a step below the barbecue band, and a clear sign that a band understands that making it takes work. Check them out on their Facebook page.
Punk has always been anti-establishment and anti-corporate. But that doesn't mean that punks aren't consumers. And in the course of becoming a consumer, one tends to develop brand loyalty. Lots of punks have an affinity for snacks, beverages, beers and even cars?
So what's punk's car?
What about the Cadillac?
Cadillacs have their share of allusions in punk music and culture.
Take a look at some prominent Cadillac moments in punk rock.
It's been reported that Dave Gregg, the guitarist from seminal punk band D.O.A. has passed away from a heart attack on March 30. He was 54.
Gregg played in D.O.A. from 1980-1988, contributing to many influential records, including Hardcore '81, the record credited with giving the genre its name. He also played with the Real McKenzies from 2005-2011.
The man's legacy has had an immeasurable influence on punk rock,
D.O.A. frontman Joe Keithley has made his own tribute to the man on the Sudden Death Records site.
We'd like to offer our condolences to his friends, family and bandmates.
The folks at Vans have slowed things down today, but that's not saying they're light on additions to the lineup. This week, the tour is announcing the lineup for the Acoustic Basement stage.
This year's Acoustic Basement lineup is:
Bad Rabbits (Full Tour)
Better Off (7/22-7/29)
PJ Bond (7/6-7/19)
Divided Heaven (7/20, 7/30-8/3)
Tess Dunn (6/21)
Elder Brother (Full Tour)
Front Porch Step (Full Tour)
Mike Herrera (MXPX) (6/28, 6/29, 7/6-7/19)
I The Mighty (7/12-8/3)
Light Years (Full Tour)
Rob Lynch (6/13-7/6)
Brian Marquis (Full Tour)
Anthony Raneri (Bayside) (Full Tour)
Nick Santino (A Rocket To The Moon) (Full Tour)
That's Not My Baby (6/20-6/25)
Allison Weiss (7/20-8/3)
Young Statues (Full Tour)
The Acoustic Basement stage is a great place to take a breather during the tour, and with Bayside's Anthony Raneri doing double duty this year with Bayside and solo, it's a chance to catch him twice. Also worth a look will be MXPX's Mike Herrera, for those of you lucky enough to be on those dates. We're also keeping track of all the official and rumored names on the 2014 Vans Warped Tour Lineup here.
It's being reported that Gwar founder and frontman David Brockie, better known as Oderus Urungus, has died. He was 50.
Jack Flanagan, manager of the Scumdogs camp, issued the following statement:
It is with a saddened heart, that I confirm my dear friend Dave Brockie, artist, musician, and lead singer of GWAR passed away at approximately 6:50 PM EST Sunday March 23,2014. His body was found Sunday by his band mate at his home in Richmond, VA. Richmond authorities have confirmed his death and next of kin has been notified. A full autopsy will be performed. He was 50 years old, born August 30, 1963.
My main focus right now is to look after my band mates and his family. More information regarding his death shall be released as the details are confirmed.
Chris Bopst, who played bass as Balsac from 1985-1987 and is now a writer for Style Weekly confirmed the news, stating, "I wish it was a joke. Everyone is in shock."
Michael Bishop, who has played bass and guitar as Beefcake the Mighty from 1987-1993 and 1998-1999 said, "He was brash sometimes, always crass, irreverent, he was hilarious in every way. But he was also deeply intelligent and interested in life, history, politics and art. His penchant for scatological humors belied a lucid wit. He was a criminally underrated lyricist and hard rock vocalist, one of the best, ever! A great frontman, a great painter, writer, he was also a hell of a bass guitarist. I loved him. He was capable of great empathy and had a real sense of justice."
Not only did Brockie found Gwar, but he is the only member who had remained a part of the lineup through its entire existence, which recently celebrated its 30-year anniversary and performed for the first time in Japan. They had also recently announced that they would be holding their fifth Gwar-B-Q concert this summer.
While the band has weathered its share of lineups over the years (including the 2011 death of Cory Smoot, AKA Flattus Maximus), Brockie was a constant as Urungus, starting as a guitarist and bassist before assuming vocal duties in the '80s, and in the ensuing years Urungus' gristly face has been the true face of the band. And while many of the various Gwar characters have changed up the bodies within the suits, I can't see this happening with Urungus. In fact, I truly can't see Gwar proceeding at all after the loss of Brockie.
If you never witnessed a Gwar show, perhaps you never witnessed true horror. You've never stood in a pit as a collection of massive beasts stood above, berating you, drenching you in various unnamed and unnameable fluids, and hammering you with a metallic tour de force edged with an acerbic wit most often delivered by Urungus.
Brockie also played with the X-Cops and The Dave Brockie Experience (DBX).
We'd like to offer our condolences to his friends, family, and all the Scumdogs of the Universe.
Photo - Takumi Nakajima
This week, 13 more bands have been added to the lineup for the 2014 Vans Warped Tour, along with some bigger names. The total number of bands on the tour is now over 90.
The latest additions are:
Antiserum (Full Tour)
Bayside (Full Tour)
Crizzly (Full Tour)
Cursed Sails (6/13-6/29)
Four Year Strong (Full Tour)
Ghost Town (6/13-7/8, 7/12,13)
K.Flay (Full Tour)
Naked Walrus (6/20-6/26)
Of Mice & Men (7/8-8/3)
Shot In The Dark (6/20)
Unlocking The Truth (7/11-7/15)
The tour is filling up, and more and more of the recent announcements are just joining for parts of the tour (or even just one date, as is the case with Shot In The Dark, but the odds are good that there are a few big surprises left for the tour as it celebrates its 20th year. We're also keeping track of all the official and rumored names on the 2014 Vans Warped Tour Lineup here.
Black Flag has just announced the dates for their Victimology 2014 tour, a spring/summer tour that kicks off on May 15.
The band has not been without a lot of controversy in the last year or so, with their reformation occurring almost simultaneously as FLAG, another band comprised of Black Flag alumni. While both bands were touring, Black Flag founding member Greg Ginn entered into a lawsuit over the rights to the band's name and logo.
Then, following Black Flag's tour supporting the less-than-stellar What The..., their first album in 30 years, Ron Reyes became the latest vocalist to leave the band, being replaced by Mike Vallely. Following that announcement bassist Dave Klein became the latest to leave the band.
A new record with Vallely is in the works (most likely with Ginn's alter ego Dale Nixon on bass) before they hit the road, with Hor (an instrumental band featuring Ginn), and Cinema Cinema (another instrumental punk band), providing support on most of the dates.
Black Flag Victimology 2014 Tour Dates
May 15: Midland, TX - Blue Max
May 16: El Paso, TX - Tricky Falls
May 17: Scottsdale, AZ - Pubrock
May 18: Las Vegas, NV - Hard Rock Cafe
May 19: Bakersfield, CA - On The Rocks
May 20: San Diego, CA - House of Blues
May 21: Anaheim, CA - House of Blues
May 22: San Francisco, CA - Brick & Mortar Music Hall
May 23: Oakland, CA - New Parrish
May 24: Reno, NV - Jub Jub's Thirst Parlor
May 27: Seattle, WA - The Showbox
May 28: Portland, OR - Hawthorne Theater
May 29: Bend, OR - Volcanic Theater Pub
May 30: Sacramento, CA - Ace of Spades
May 31: Los Angeles, CA - House of Blues
June 11: Dallas, TX - Elm Street Festival
June 13: Columbia, MO - Blue Note
June 14: Omaha, NE - Bourbon Theatre
June 15: Minneapolis, MN - Triple Rock
June 16: Madison, WI - Majestic
June 17: Chicago, IL - Reggies
June 18: Lansing, MI - The Avenue
June 19: Toronto, ON - El Mocambo
June 20: Montebello - Amnesia Rockfest
June 21: Danbury, CT - Heirloom Arts
June 22: Brooklyn, NY - Europa
June 23: Long Branch, NJ - Brighton Bar
June 24: Philadelphia, PA - Union Transfer
June 25: Pittsburgh, PA - Altar Bar
June 26, Newport, KY - Southgate House
June 27: Nashville, TN - Exit/In
June 28: Hot Springs, AR - Maxine's
It's being reported that Stooges drummer Scott Asheton passed away Saturday due to an unspecified illness. He was 64.
Asheton founded the Stooges in 1967, along with his brother Ron and vocalist Iggy Pop, and the trio along with fellow scenemates the MC5 helped define the shape of punk rock in the states. Raw Power was more than the name of an album, it was a sound and a fury they brought to music, and they created punk rock as we know it today.
I first saw the Stooges when they reunited in the summer of 2003, and I think it's no coincidence that was a rescheduled show, after the first show was postponed when the entire East Coast was hit with a massive power outage that lasted for days, after starting right about the time they would have been doing their sound check. When the show finally took place, they employed a raw maelstrom of punk energy that shook the stadium and threatened to plunge us all into darkness once again.
Scott's passing was preceded by Ron's in 2009. He never got to see the legendary band he helped create be inducted to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (after being nominated eight times). Scott was able to witness that, and as the world has recognized the band's contribution to music, it's surely now recognizing the musical void created by his passing.
We'd like to extend our condolences to Asheton's bandmates, friends and family.
We're back from SXSW (AKA the land of musical mayhem as well as the world of a broadband network so overtaxed that texts come through up to 24 hours late, so never mind the amount of time it takes to try - and fail - to upload any information to the interwebs), and are catching up and compiling the great music we bore witness to, but first I wanted to bring all y'alls (that's Texas talk) up to speed on the latest from the folks at Vans. This week, they slapped another 11 bands into the lineup.
American Pin-Up (7/15-7/24)
DJ Scout (Full Tour)
Fit For A King (7/15-8/3)
Icon For Hire (Full Tour)
Lionize (Full Tour)
The Lost Boys (7/16-7/20)
Lost In Society (7/25-8/3)
Mod Sun (7/8-7/15)
Scare Don't Fear (Full Tour)
Sleeper Agent (7/11-7/29)
As it all fills up, Vans is promising 13 more additions this week.We're also keeping track of all the official and rumored names on the 2014 Vans Warped Tour Lineup here.