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“Keep Doing What You’re Doing” You Blew It!

You Blew It!

Keep Doing What You’re Doing Album Review

Topshelf Records

Released January 14, 2014

Genre: Emo, Indie Rock

Modest Mouse once said, “And we’ll all float on okay.” You Blew it! attest to this maxim in their new album, Keep Doing What You’re Doing, A whimsical new emo record, that delves into relationships and questions existence. It’s an angst-y piece of music, much like nearly every emo-revivalist group nowadays, but the music is executed at a top notch level.

This is definitely an improvement over their last record, Grow Up, Dude. Vocalist Tanner Jones voice is stronger than ever, maintaining his raspy tone while hitting the notes even better than before. The first song, “Match and Tinder,” showcases how tight the band’s performance chops are. The course is catchy, and the guitar parts are well-written. The drumming is also solid and pumps out grooves that really propel the “feels” into the listeners’ ears. Also, Evan Weiss’s production on this record is incredible as he records the guitars with a very lush sound. Every instrument is well balanced in terms of volume. The first half of this record up until the song “A different kind of Kindling” is great. It’s a collection of infectious choruses, happily hopeless harmonies, and interesting guitar leads. “Kindling”, sporting a sad cappella intro, is even more emotional than the other songs on this album as it transitions smoothly into a very beautiful and dreamy guitar harmony.

However, the second-half of the album, save the last track, is satisfactory but unadventurous. I enjoyed the tracks quite a bit, but I felt like more experimentation or innovation was necessary to make it more worthwhile. The last track, “Better to Best,” is anthemic, empowering, and beautiful. The song is written very well and throws many structural curveballs into the mix. The lyrics are also hopeful; Jones sings passionately and with gusto.

Melancholic and moody, You Blew It! have crafted another great record. Although the second half was somewhat lackluster, Keep Doing What You’re Doing is a fantastic experience. If any of these songs speak to you, which they will if you’re human, this is the best Time you’ll have crying all year…and it’s only January.

PRETTY NEAT MUSIC

FAV TRACKS: Match & Tinder, Award of the Year Award, A Different Kind of Kindling, Better to Best

LEAST FAV TRACKS: You & Me & Me, Gray Matter

Score: (8.6/10)

Mogwai-Rave-Tapes

“Rave Tapes” Mogwai

Mogwai

Rave Tapes Album Review

Sub Pop Records

Released January 20, 2014

Genre: Post Rock, Progressive Rock, Electronic Rock

Why does everything have to be electronic nowadays in order to be well received? We got electronic induced rock (Imagine Dragons), electronic, minimal pop (Lorde) and mentioning the loads of dubstep that’s out there would be useless to our modern society. Is it because of the ever looming technological era, or is it an evolution in our taste in music? If it’s the latter, artists shouldn’t conform just to appeal to the public. It ruins the whole point of an artist’s integrity. If you’re going use electronic elements with your music, make something of it and not a carbon copy of some Top 40 hits. Conforming turns the musician into a puppet, and honestly, it feels too contrived to even enjoy. However, Mogwai takes a very unique approach to electronic music.

Take Radiohead’s seminal album Kid A or perhaps Pink Floyd’s The Dark Side of the Moon as examples, two albums that changed the music scene because of the revolutionary sound. At each album’s time, 2000 and 1973 respectively, the sounds of wobbly synths, samples, and loops were incredibly uncommon and dissonant of the generation so used to grunge and rock, respectively. But I do believe that many artists, inspired by the ambition and audacity of Radiohead and Pink Floyd, followed suit and helped kickstart this revolution of electronic music. Mogwai takes a very predictable and underwhelming approach towards their potent mic of instrumental and triumphant sound.

Scottish post-rock outfit Mogwai has a very consistent track record. Past releases such as 2011′s Hardcore Will Never Die, But You Will and even 1993s Young Team showed that Mogwai is capable of both soft, emotional ballads commonly seen on an album by post-rock kings Explosions In The Sky and menacing, triumphant odes one will see on a Godspeed You! Black Emperor album. Here with Rave Tapes, Mogwai neither lifts up nor chases away listeners as they bring in electronic instrumentation. Sadly, this isn’t their Kid A(a critically acclaimed album by English rock group Radio). Almost felt like the path of Radiohead now did it?

*For those new to the post-rock genre, the concept is very simple. Take the instruments of rock music, electric guitars, drums, bass etc., take away the vocals and play the instruments to move the music like words would do. See Explosions  In The Sky, This Will Destroy You and Godspeed You! Black Emperor for examples.*

The opening track, “Heard About You Last Night,” slowly and solemnly brings the listener to a dismal landscape. It feels like an interlude off of Deafheaven’s 2013 masterpiece, Sunbather where hypnotizing guitars weave around drummer Martin Bulloch’s background-music style beat. Now, the Mogwai we love to hear appears on the track “Remurdered” where the foreboding keyboard riff carries the song through out its six minute length. A compelling track that shows that Mogwai can still pull off the magic they deliver on almost every release.

But nothing here ever feels emotional. None of it feels intimate. The only tracks that strive for a cathartic climax are “Hexon Bogon” and “Deesh”, but the experience feels rather distancing. “Hexon Bogon” uses distortion to steadily grow into a cloud of noise while “Deesh” follows suit, using synths as its weapon of choice, fully exercising the new artistic vision that Mogwai had set for this album. “Repelish” features an odd vocal clip that condemns hedonism in rock. It just feels awkward and gives a message that isn’t shown throughout the whole album. It’s at this point where Mogwai shows that it is lost.

Mogwai is known for their experimentation and bold ambition. Jumping from ambiance to noise rock and now electronic rock, the band is one of the most creative post-rock acts out there. But on an album that doesn’t deliver the emotional intensity that engages the listener, Mogwai shows that they’ve fallen, pretty far too.

Now while this album does feel underwhelming, I do applaud the technical production behind it. However, like I said,  Mogwai is great at making post-apocalyptic, emotional post-rock odes that make you cry or scream. Here, we have an album that doesn’t achieve either feat previously accomplished. But what if it’s a change? It is a change in their style; Mogwai was born to rock, but this album is merely middle of the road and frankly, lifeless. They’ve drained themselves of the power they once had. It appears that the electronics have overcome Mogwai. Now, they’re less personal and less human.

FAV TRACKS: Remurdered, Hexon Bogon, Master Card, Blues Hour, The Lord Is Out Of Control

LEAST FAV TRACKS: Heard About You Last Night, Repelish

Score: (6.4/10)

 

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“After The Disco” Broken Bells

Broken Bells

After The Disco Track Review

Columbia Records

Released January 7, 2014

Genre: Disco, Synthpop, Space Rock

Somewhere along the way of James Mercer’s path to being a musician was a time where he was fascinated by the Bee Gees, the prime example of 70s disco and funk. Overlapping that musical phase came Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon, a game-changing album if we ever saw one, evident in his band, The Shins’, cover of Pink Floyd’s “Breathe” on Fallon back in 2011.. Think of this track as a venn diagram. The middle overlap? The title track of Broken Bells’ newest album, After The Disco.

Wonky synths and dance beats create a spectacular vibe that, as I said, crosses between Pink Floyd and the BeeGees, sometimes even Marvin Gaye. Mercer’s fascination for the electronic side of music (opposed to The Shins’ more rock influenced instrumentation) remains a strong point on this track. High pitched falsettos, grooving bass and plenty of atmosphere keep this track orbiting earth, lifting it high off the ground, in the moment and living free. However, there isn’t a strong hook to accompany the track, but a few listens and the verses should soak in.

Even after the disco, Broken Bells keep the party going. So yes, Ivy League kids do get stoned to Pink Floyd, and perhaps a more distinct and antipodal demographic soak in the Gibb brothers for their personal gain. Broken Bells bring these two parties together, and for once, everything resonates smoothly.

PRETTY NEAT MUSIC

Score:(7.6/10)

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“Vessel” Twenty One Pilots

Twenty One Pilots

Vessel Album Review

Fueled By Ramen Records

Released January 8, 2013

Genre: Alternative Hip Hop, Indietronica,  Piano Rock

 

Twenty One Pilots is one of the few bands out there that, surprisingly, master all genres they encompass on their eclectic sophomore album. While surpassing expectations, they deliver a very unique album that is filled with catchy hooks, outstanding production and loads of personality.

Ominously opening up the album is “Ode To Sleep” and although the song hints at a very dark tone, they switch up the mood to a more lively, buoyant ode showing no stitches in the process. When being performed live, they don skeleton outfits and as the lively section enters the masks are off and the true masters behind Twenty One Pilots are exposed. However, solidarity probably wasn’t in mind as the track does a complete 180, switching up personalities as much as a bipolar patient would. But they handle the transitions smoothly; it’s alarming but also a very easy shift.

The next four tracks are very strong; with catchy hooks (Holding On To You), danceable beats (Migraine), interestingly unexpected instrumentation (House of Gold) and very meaningful, pensive lyrics (Car Radio) the duo shows that there’s more to them then meets the eye even bringing in some dance-style synths in “Guns For Hands” and “Trees” that will make anyone jump around crazily as the excitement and personality of the songs brings the soul in you to life. But towards the end they calm down the album with the beautiful ballad “Truce”, a very sweet and passionate closing to Vessel.

From the manic, clever mind of lead singer Tyler Joseph, the lyrical content on this LP is something worth noting for it treads the emotions of paranoia, anxiety, fear and joy, along with some quick and witty word play. “Holding On To You” features a sample of  Dem Franchize Boyz’ 2006 track, “Lean Wit It, Rock Wit It” even disdaining the lyricism of popular culture and Dem Franchize Boyz. “Lean with it, rock with it/When we gonna stop with it/Lyrics that mean nothing, we were gifted with thought/Is it time to move our feet to an introspective beat/It ain’t the speakers that bump hearts, it’s our hearts that make the beat”, chants Joseph as synths circle and Dun’s drums carry the song to a triumphant finish.

On “House of Gold”, Joseph promises wealth and rest, showing very introspective and heartfelt lyricism , proving that this band aren’t a bunch of demeaning young adults. They thrive off of music, basically not able to live without music as heard in the gasping yells of “Car Radio”, where a combination of dance beats and synths, boiling screams and “Whooooooaaaasss” break down the barriers that they’ve set up for themselves, now the content on this LP can figuratively go anywhere. However, the lyrical content does get a little melodramatic and over compensates the tone of the album, never living up to the ambition that they have exemplified for themselves.

Twenty One Pilots deliver a lot of potential on this sophomore LP, especially with this new lineup of theirs. From the screaming yet quick and nasal-heavy vocal delivery courtesy of lead singer Tyler Joseph to the bombastic, energetic drumming from percussion powerhouse Josh Dun, the band delivers on every level of appeal as they jump thorough different genres like dance music to rap rock to pop to rock, everything is there. It may be a little disjointed but it showcases the roads that they can tackle. A sampler maybe?

With every listen the level of appreciation grows more than you think. I do feel that when some genres overcome the mix they give, it tends to become a bit irritating or tedious such as the erratic synths in “Semi-Automatic”. It isn’t too much of a problem but upon first listen the lisping vocals and corny lyricism along with the erratic synths hover your finger over the skip button. Additionally, the switch ups between the electronic tracks and ukelele based tracks throw off the flow of the album as it fails to stay focused throughout. I mean when’s the last time you heard a ukelele on an album with hip hop beats?

By fusing the popular genres of rap, pop, electronic, and rock, they exhibit so many opportunities as to see why and how Twenty One Pilots can and will achieve success.By delivering one of the most conscious, confident and fun releases of the year, Twenty One Pilots show that they aren’t messing around.  Some people will put down this album as juvenile, childish maybe even cocky, but no one can deny the curve ball that they throw, it’s one you will never see coming and one you won’t mind slamming you directly in the face. In a year full of music that made us cry, made us dance, and made us smile, Twenty One Pilots gave us an album that made us feel their passion, troubles and triumphs.

Corny? Yes, but the skill and passion is there even if it gets incredibly cringey in the process. 


PRETTY NEAT MUSIC

FAV TRACKS: Ode To Sleep, Holding On To You, Migraine, Car Radio, Gun For Hands, Trees, Truce

LEAST FAV TRACK: Semi-Automatic

Score: (7.9/10)

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“Wig Out At Jagbags” Stephen Malkmus and The Jicks

Stephen Malkmus and The Jicks

Wig Out At Jagbags Album Review

Matador Records/Domino Records

Released January 7, 2014

Genre: Indie Rock, Alternative Rock, Psychedelic Rock

Thom Yorke never made it out of the cave of electronic music that he and his band Radiohead settled in with the release of 2000′s centennial Kid A. He released a debut riddled with odd samples and artificial drum machines and toured with his other band, Atoms for Peace,who improvised IDM (Intelligent Dance Music) compositions along with Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea and numerous Radiohead producers.

Much like Yorke, guitarist Jack White also never left the garage rock phase of his music. In the Dead Weather, The White Stripes and The Ranconteurs, White’s garage rock influence remained, evident on his 2012 solo debut, Blunderbuss. What White and Yorke both demonstrate is that it’s hard for an artist to leave a style that he/she has worked so effortlessly on. They just keep rehashing a certain style that’s been done before but with better compositions and techniques, just to shake things up a bit. Artists like Yorke and White who jump from band to band need to try new techniques with each act to prove that they are well-rounded musicians. Take Stephen Malkmus, for instance.

Stephen Malkmus’ first band, Pavement, a lo-fi/indie rock outfit band that developed a cult following in its later years, showcased Malkmus as a guitarist with ambition and rock star prowess. Shifting gears upon the disintegration of Pavement, Malkmus took an alternative country/indie folk turn that, once more, showcased his ability as a musician with his solo act. With his backup band, The Jicks, Malkmus again delivers a different style that results in psychedelic rock/ indie rock tunes that are reminiscent of their label mates, Of Montreal.

Like any psychedelic rock albums, there’s riffs, lots of them. Take the opener, “Planetary Motion”, for instance: drums and bass chop up the beat as Malkmus wails away before thundering it with heavy distorted riffs reminiscent of those found on the last Queens of the Stone Age album. Malkmus does, however, have a very Kevin Barnes-y tone of voice, giving it a very familiar if not rewarding sound. But these tunes aren’t rock imitations, they’re flashes of scarce ingenuity. Malkmus is 47, and most people his age begin to wind down.

Now Malkmus hasn’t washed up just yet. There are a few bright spots on this album, most notably the song structures. “The Janitor Revealed” takes some interesting passages as it switches up from driving rock to soft rock, like transitions between two tracks in the same key. The heavy intro of “Houston Hades” shows that Malkmus still has some juice left in him, even at his AARP card eligible age. Now the mantra of psychedelic rock does pop out every now and then, take the bass on “Shibboleth” for instance, or the Kurt Vile/jazz influenced “J Smoov”, a very smooth track that has the familiar Malkmus croon brought out, a good throwback for fans along with some trumpet solos.

Where Wig Out At Jag Bags fails is the memorability and distinction. Now Malkmus isn’t one to produce a catchy hook, I’ll give him that. Rather, he focuses more on the vibe that he gives off, but there isn’t much to remember from this album . Perhaps age has got the better of Malkmus? I mean, if you’re willing to deliver an intro verse, much like the one in “Rumble At The Rainbo” to “throwback” to the golden age, then you’re becoming wistful of the past. But this song takes many turns: from noise rock to indie pop to disfigured ska (like Sublime). But teary eyes do begin to show here.

Malkmus isn’t just looking back at his past; it’s the past of music that he so dearly loved. The soulful spirit of “Chartjunk” starts the power of this album up again as it brings Queen influenced vocals. But along with many throwbacks to oldies comes an apparent message; much like Jake Bugg’s coming of age 2013 debut, Malkmus too is concerned with aging. Take “Independence Street,” for instance, where he can neither drink down brandy or tea, feeling neutral of youth and adulthood. But when you’ve had a momentous start in the music industry like Malkmus, then feeling wary of age is something that you should always be anxious of. The golden age is hard to leave behind.

I’m not implying that Malkmus is going to grow old and wither away or become sloppy with his music. I’m just saying that if Malkmus is entering the age where his graduation goggles are kicking in, then at least he should go out with a bang. This album is the tease that Malkmus brings with every project he does. Will he resurrect the beauty and distinct sound of Pavement? Maybe. Maybe not. At 47, age comes with its perks. It’s that time when adults are either sarcastic or serious, wanting to either bandwagon with the youth or warn them. However it’s also the time where ends become visible and the only way to deal with their convergence is to, like Malkmus sings on “Independence Street”, be “busy being free”.

FAV TRACKS: Planetary Motion, The Janitor Revealed, Lariat, J Smoov, Chartjunk, Independence Street, Cinnamon and Lesbians

LEAST FAV TRACKS: Shibboleth

Score: (5.5/10)

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“Forever” Painted Palms

Painted Palms

Forever Album Review

Polyvinyl Records

Released January 14, 2014

Genre: Psych Pop

by Will Butler

Like people spending their Christmas holidays in Majorca or whatever repulsive sweat-pit location Easy Jet are flogging off at a ‘bargain’, Painted Palms have dropped a perversely warm debut in a season that typically transfuses bitterness like a swift dose of dysentery. A San-Francisco hailing duo that rose through the ranks as a result of a hearty champion from floppy haired Of Montreal-ist Kevin Barnes, Painted Palms’ Forever is a seemingly oblivious throwback to a summer of dance infused indie-pop however whatever nuggets of ingenuity and lighthearted tangibility this album produces is disproportionality sullied by banal choruses and rehashed instrumentation.

Forever is subdued by unambitious song structures and tranquillising cliches which are totally frustrating since these cousins two showcase their pop sensibility by the bucket load, it’s just spread so thin you can easily miss it. “Here it Comes” pinpoints that the triviality of our day to day is due to the fact that “everything is the same”, which ironically is this LP’s greatest pitfall. I understand that psych music is constructed on the philosophy of ‘chillin’’ and the avoidance of general exertion but Painted Palms seemed to have interpreted this as an invite to inject copious amounts of lethargy into their music, and it rubs off on the listener. I found myself rolling on the floor in a shameful bout of stoicism by track six, “Carousel,” which, like a carousel, only gives the illusion of movement and voyage until we inevitably discover that we’re exactly where we started, how very disappointing.

Painted Palms haven’t dive-bombed totally, the gripes with this release are rooted mainly within my anticipation for this album since hearing first single Spinning Signs. It’s jungle blended instrumental in flux with the most and possibly only convincing vocal performance makes for a truly memorably pop-psych track. Painted Palms try so hard to bat off any deviation from this formula; they’re attempting to colour in within the lines with such a limited palette and instead making for a bland and prosaic release. I would never condemn an artist for playing it safe but in such a time where the genre of psych-pop is as overpopulated as it is Painted Palms really need to pull their socks up and take some initiative in order to make a lasting impression. I’m not suggesting some sort of “two will enter one will leave” tournament for the remaining places for band’s in this genre but if Painted Palms were to incorporate the excitement of such an event into their next release well then, we might have ourselves something more promising.

FAV TRACKS: SPINNING SIGNS / HYPNOTISE

LEAST FAV TRACKS: NOT REALLY THERE / FOREVER / EMPTY GUN

SCORE 5.4/10

Interview with Sam Lao!

By Michael White and Jon Birondo

Sometimes, being an up-and-comer in Hip Hop is a crazy journey. You have to dedicate so much time to writing and promotion that it takes over your whole life. Female rapper Sam Lao provides some insight on what it’s like to be an MC on the rise.

PNG: When did you first begin performing as an artist and how?

Lao: If we’re talking just musically, my very first show was March 2013. My mentor Killa MC let me perform at his birthday show at Prophet Bar. I was super nervous not only because it was my first show but because it was the first time a lot of my friends found out I was doing music. Outside of music, in high school I performed a bit with theatre and poetry slams, so I wasn’t completely new to performing in front of people when I started rapping.

PNG: Who was your favorite artist/band as a kid?

Lao: Oh goodness, we were definitely a top 40 household when I was growing up, lots of KISS FM so I definitely listened to plenty of Britney Spears, N’SYNC, Backstreet Boys and all that. And my mom loved Queen and Prince so I listened to a lot of that and still do.

PNG: Who are your musical influences?

Lao: I prefer the word inspired over influenced because I don’t feel like any one artist shaped the music I’ve put out. I don’t go into it with the mindset of “I want to make a song like that one” or “I want to sound like this person”. It’s been more of a listening to different artists and feeling inspired and creative and just going with the flow when I get in the studio. Me and my producer IshD call my music Experimental HipHop for that reason. Although its hiphop at its core we like to build on top of that into something people wouldn’t expect and haven’t heard before.

PNG: We heard you opened up for Jessie Ware back in October. How was that experience?

Lao: It was amazing! I got asked to do that pretty last minute and I just remember opening the email and staring at the screen for a few moments in disbelief. I was already lined up to play 4 more shows that weekend and early the next week but I just couldn’t say no! I knew that no one in the crowd would know who I was but I walk into shows like that with the intention of gaining new fans so although I was nervous as long as I gained a few new fans I felt like I’d be ok. The show was great, Jessie and her band were amazing and I got to meet her during the after party. She was super nice and really encouraging.

PNG: What bands/artists are you currently listening to?

Lao: I listen to a lot of Kanye, Jay-Z, Beyonce, TDE Everything (lol), Childish Gambino, Killa MC, Blue the Mistfit and The Airplane Boys with a few other randoms mixed in.

PNG: What is it like being a female MC in the Dallas hip-hop scene? Good? Bad? Indifferent?

Lao: I feel like it’s worked in my favor. Even if people are initially turned off by the idea of a female rapper I think I’ve done a good job of drawing them in at shows and getting those people to listen and enjoy my music. That and being a part of BrainGang has been beneficial. It’s like having a team of really talented big brothers on my side and I know that that affiliation has definitely helped people take me seriously and give me a chance.

PNG: What is your advice for an up-and-coming rapper?

Lao: Your brand and your team are very important. You are more than just your music. You have to take everything into consideration in order to present a cohesive package. Thats album art, videos, any other visuals, your personal style and your live performance. Having great music is wonderful and yea that will get you fans but creating a full package and really branding yourself as an artist makes people take you seriously and stick around to see/hear more. As far as your team, friends are good but you need more than “yes” men. You need people that you trust to tell you when you need to go back to the drawing board or to go with something you might be too afraid to follow through with. You need people that will challenge you and people who inspire you, that you can feed off creatively.

PNG: Do you have any upcoming musical releases?

Lao: I’ve been working on a lot of new music and I plan to release a new song soon. This year I’ll be working on a full length album as well.

You can learn more about Sam Lao on her website.

Interview with Lord Byron!

 

by Michael White and Jon Birondo

Poignant and personal, Dallas rapper Lord Byron opened his mind up to the audience at the North Texas Hip Hop Showcase on January 10. After an electrifying performance at the showcase, Lord Byron agreed to answer a few questions about his origins and inspirations:

PNG: How did you discover that you wanted to rap?

Byron: It was more less discovery and more so destiny even though that sounds extremely cheesy. I never in a million years thought I would rap I wanted to draw and create characters for cartoons. I always wrote raps for fun just being smothered in the culture but eventually it turned into something unexplained.

PNG: What are your biggest musical/non-musical influences?

Byron: Jay Z, Basquiat, Malcolm X, Kanye West, Khalil Gibran, Bjork, Marlon Brando, Stew Brrd, Thomas Welch, Nas, Fat Bastard from DSR

PNG: How did you assemble your band? They sounded super tight.

Byron: Those are my Jazz friends that i met through another friend named Rami who’s a member of Billie Gang (a Dallas based Hip Hop collective) they did me a huge favor even though they were happy to do so

PNG: What music are you currently listening to?

Byron: Chief Keef’s Almighty So mixtape, Bjork’s Debut, and Mile’s Davis’s
Kind Of Blue

How do you approach songwriting and What advice do you have for an up-and-coming MC.

I only write when I feel like it of feel inspired, I never rush the writing process so it could take me 5 mins to write 2 verses or 2 months to write 5 bars. It’s all about making the most perfect song possible. And as far as advice ….idk I’m not famous yet I’m still up in coming haha but ummmm just study the game before you enter it, study the culture, study the people affiliated with the culture, study the music, then rap with the mentality to make the greatest product possible. That’s it

You can check out his work on his website.

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Interview with The Results!

(From L to R) Back: Nick Eastep, Rowdy Domstead, Dickson Weber, Jeff Fitzgerald

Front: Sara Pursell, Mira Fountain

I sat down recently with my good friends, The Results, (PNG contributor Nick Eastep is guitarist for this band) at their show at the Prophet Bar .The Results are:
Rowdy Domstead – R
Jeff Fitzgerald – J
Nick Eastep – N
Dickson Weber – D
Sara Pursell – S
Mira Fountain – M
——————————————————————————————————————————-
PNG:How did The Results start?

R: I actually started The Results when I was in the 7th grade. It wasn’t called that at all at that time. The Results in its current form didn’t actually start until last year, around this time. Around this time last year. I’m the last original member but in the sense of the form that the band is in now and the kind of music that we play, I think we’re all new to it.

PNG: Ok, so umm, describe the shift in The Results.

R: When I was in grade school, the lineup was liquid, very fluid and ever-changing. We settled it in high school. The lineup was my two friends and a girl from my grade school years. We switched our style last year, which up until the switch was a pop-rock band. There wasn’t any technical prowess or anything like that in the music before. We play now what we refer to as djent. We incorporate different styles into our music with 7-string and 8-string guitars.

PNG: Besides prog and groove metal, what are your other musical influences?

N: Minor Threat, Thrice, Animals as Leaders

PNG: Three great picks.

R: I have a really big pop influence.

PNG: I love the Backstreet Boys.

R: Dude, I love them too, not a big influence though. I like pop-influenced vocals. That’s why I like Periphery. I also like Monuments. I’m gonna half to go with Nick on Animals as Leaders for the technical guitar prowess aspect of our sound.

J: Nothing special here. Dream Theater for prog stuff, Animals as Leaders for the crazy tech stuff, and Periphery cause of soul.

PNG: No Iwrestledabear once?

J: Only on Tuesday, shh!

(all laugh)

S: I have to say metalcore, I was a metalcore kid before the band.

PNG: Like Earth Crisis metalcore, or Hot topic?

S: Hot Topic (laughs) Underoath, Cynic.

M: Metalcore, David Bowie.

N: Did someone say Paramore?

M: A-And Paramore

the results: (laughs)

M: Shut up. I hate you guys.

PNG: So when can we expect to hear some more material from you guys?

the results: (laughs) Soon.

N: yes

Jeff: Hopefully before May.

R: Ok I can give you an actual date. Nick is producing our self released single. We’ve been in the studio for the last week or two. We’re looking at a single from the studio, uhh, around the beginning of February and towards the end of February/ beginning of March, a whole 5 song EP.

PNG: That’s awesome. So uh, you guys aren’t signed to a label or anything right?

R: No, we actually have to mention it, uhh-

N: We are signed to Working on Twerking productions. (laughs)

The Results: (laughs)

R: We are working with Norman Matthew from Murder FM in his personal studio-

N: Workin’ On Twerkin’

R: – (LAUGHS) in between his bouts of touring. Norman’s awesome.

PNG: Are you gonna stay DIY, or are you sending anything out to a label?

R: We’ve never sent anything out to a lable. We’re just working on connections with promoters in the area, and stuff like that. Our approach to that is just this: let’s get out there and play. There’s not a lot you can get from a label right now. Self promotion is pretty much the name of the game.

PNG: Where can we hear The Results right now?

R: It’s hard to find us, cause if type “results” into anything you get cancer research, whatever.

S: You get lots of “results”.

R: But we have a website (www.theresultsrock.com). It’s got links to Soundcloud, Youtube, Twitter Etc.

PNG: Awesome guys! Keep it neat!

We look forward to hearing new material from these guys in the future!

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Dallas Observer Presents: North Texas Hip Hop Showcase

By Jon Birondo and Michael White
(Edited by Hunter Hauk)

Last Friday, the Dallas Observer hosted the North Texas Hip Hop Showcase at the Granada Theater. Sporting a slew of diverse spitters, the entire venue was electrified by the constant influx of freaky flows, dastardly deliveries, infectious hooks, and wacky “wristcrankers” (beats that get you turn up).

AV THE GREAT

Kicking off the show was AV the Great, a proud Texas boy who wasn’t afraid to spill his heart out on stage. Immediately grasping the audience with his captivating energy and congenial aura, he jumped right into a great beat and rode it hard. He started out with a few more party-centered tracks, but then transitioned into more introspective tracks that effectively showcased his rhyming ability. He dropped some great lines, comparing his rhymes to bullets that he was aiming at his target (the audience). Keep an eye out for him, and check out his website.
JAESON GREEN

Singer and rapper Jaeson Green was the next act to enter the real-life boxing ring filling the Granada’s stage. While he didn’t perform a lot of original material at the beginning of his set, he kept the audience entertained by rapping over some popular tracks by Drake and other chart-toppers. He found his way with his own material later on. But we can’t accurately judge him just yet, because he didn’t play enough originals to warrant a critique. He did seem to connect with the audience, and it helped that he left the stage to rap among the people. Here’s his site.

topic

The rapper –topic delivered a crazy and energetic performance inside and outside the boxing ring. This is the set in which the audience participated the most up to that point. Everyone from moms to little kids were invited up on stage and, to close the performance off, -topic and his crew threw bags of chips out at the crowd. His headlining shows should guarantee a good time. Here’s his site


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LORD BYRON

Dallas’ Lord Byron came with his own band, a jazz quartet complete with drums, guitars, keys and bass. In addition to offering a different set up than the other rappers, he also delivered a unique flow — extremely introspective, clever and entertaining. His band was technically proficient, and his rhymes complemented the band very well with his boom-bap-style flow. Definitely one to watch.Here’s his website.


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Sam Lao

Next up was the only female MC at the showcase,the beautiful Sam Lao, who put on a passionate and entertaining performance. With sultry vocals and overall good flow, Lao put on a turned down and mellow performance reminiscent of old school Nicki Minaj. We have high hopes in this “rising star”. Check her out here.


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Blue, The Misfit

The last act to take the stage before headliner A.Dd+, Blue, the Misfit kept the video curtain down, jumping in front of the big screen wearing a mask. He started rapping with much vigor and ferocity, gripping the audience. However, the projector was displaying a collection of random videos that distracted our eyes from the rapper. These clips were hilarious, including scenes from Dragonball Z and Pokemon. However, Blue’s engaging style had the crowd going nuts by the end of the set, with everyone bouncing.Here is his site.

Ad.D+

Unfortunately we had to miss Ad.D+, but from what we gathered from twitter, they put on a great show. Here’s his site.

The show was definitely a success. The Granada was packed; there were easily hundreds of emphatic and energetic hip-hop fans. Events like this demonstrate that the Dallas Hip Hop scene is strong and cemented. Many of these emcees are going places, without a doubt.