Category Archives: Random Musings

Video Premiere: Nightmare and the Cat- Be Your Own God

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LA based rockers Nightmare and the Cat have released their new video “Be Your Own God” from their debut EP Simple. While not the same as being able to see them kick some serious butt on stage, the next best thing is imagining this video was shot in your living room.

If you like what you see (and hear) you can catch them this Sunday 10/27 in LA at the El Rey with Sky Ferreira.

 

All the important links:

Website: http://nightmareandthecat.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/nightmareandthecat

Twitter: https://twitter.com/nightmareandcat

Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/nightmareandthecat/sets/nightmare-and-the-cat

 

LMN Band Exam: Sam Grow

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Southern Maryland native Sam Grow has been touring all over the U.S. and has stopped in San Diego to play at Lestats tomorrow! We asked this multi-instrumentalist singer/songwriter a few questions about touring and his life in general. Check out the answers to our little exam below and go see him play tomorrow 9/12 at Lestats at 9pm.

LMN Band Exam Questions- Sam Grow

Multiple Choice: choose
one of the following three options. Feel free to ad lib or create your own
choices.

Form of caffeine: Coffee, tea, energy drinks –
Coffee. 

Best place to play a random show: beach, forest, shopping mall – Shopping Mall, though we do love playing on
the beach!

Fight boredom on the road: Cards, Reading, Music, DVDs – Facebook, Instagram TwitterI live on them.

Fill in the Blank:

Favorite thing to eat when I get home:  Crabs

Favorite store:  American Eagle

Last thing I bought:  A new Chevy truck!

An interesting item you might find in Sam Grow’s tour van: Push Up Bar.  Tour Bus exercising!

Essay Questions:

If you weren’t rockin’ out as a musician, what would be your ideal
job?:  I would want to own a label so I could help out other artists.

What is the first instrument you learned how to play?:  Piano.

If you could sum up Sam Grow in five words, what would they be? Blessed, Family, Musician, Songwriter,
Dreamer

 

The Bard Interviews: A Sit Down with Saint Motel at the Soda Bar [7/25/13]

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It was roughly 8:15pm in the tiny parking lot of the Soda Bar when I sat down with the always entertaining Saint Motel members AJ Jackson (AJ-singer, keys, guitar), Greg Erwin (G-drummer), Dak Lerd (D-bass), and Aaron Sharp (AS- guitar) in their relatively new tour van. We talked about their new single My Type, touring in the UK, must have items whilst on the road, secret special talents, and much more. Read on my friends, read on… (pssssst: you can see photos from the show here)

AB: So tell me about the new track you guys just dropped yesterday, “My Type”, is that from a new record that’s coming?

AJ: We dropped it…. We dropped it like a basketball….

G: We didn’t mean to drop it, it just fell and we’re like, oh well it fell now so I guess we’ll have to pick it up. I’m just kidding.

AJ: Never shake a baby.

G: (mumbles in agreement)

AJ: Yeah. We are very excited about the song. It’s really fun and we’ve been excited to share it with everybody and it was really nice to be able to do that yesterday. And um, we’ve been playing it since a month ago (when) we started this tour but I’m just hoping people aren’t going to record it and leak it on to YouTube and be like “song’s out! Surprise” But yeah, it’s been fun. We’ve really enjoyed that one.

AB: Cool. Yeah. Definitely. It sounds a little bit different from what you guys have been doing. It’s a lot more… brassy.

AJ: Yeah. Yeah, I mean that’s definitely one thing a bit different from it. I mean on Voyeur we already kinda started using some horns and different instrumentation and um, the new batch of music definitely has a lot of sounds we’ve never used before um but I feel like, you know, at the same time it’s got a lot of classic Saint Motel vibe to it. Whatever that means. And um, yeah I dunno I guess we didn’t think too much about it being brassy or not it was just, we liked how it sounded and we liked the song and we didn’t want to, you know, limit ourselves.

AB: Definitely. So when can we expect a new record? Any ideas?

AJ: Um, there’s no information on that right now. Unfortunately. Someone knows but we don’t.

AB: Okay. You guys were recently in the UK. How was that experience? What were some of the best and worst moments? You guys had some epic pictures.

AJ: Thanks. Yeah, it was an epic time. We had two shows in London and then played some shows in Scotland and it was just like… I don’t think there was really any lowlights.

G: I agree.

AJ: I think the beer was a bit flatter.

G: Yeah, the beer isn’t as cold there. They like to serve their shit

[AJ: But you know, when in Rome] cellar temperature.

AJ: But, you know, when in Rome. I said “when in Rome” a lot just because I knew we were in Rome.

G: [Sighs]

AJ: It’s pretty fun.

G: We made sure we told everyone we were American as many times as possible and we wore, like, American flag t-shirts.

AJ: Yeah. You gotta. You gotta do that. Whenever you leave the country you have to do that. You have to wear only American apparel.

G: Especially in Europe. Yeah.

AJ: Yeah, no it was a good time from start to finish. And I think we’re going to be going back over there pretty soon. Which is cool.

AB: Cool. What are your guys’ must have items when you’re on the road?

G: Each other.

AJ: That is important. We don’t want to lose anybody.

G: Ummmmm.

AJ: Ginger has been a new one.

G: These guys eat a lot of ginger.

AJ: Fresh ginger.

G: I can’t do it. It’s too strong.

AJ: Slice it up, take a bite, and just chew on it. And it just makes everything better.

AB: It’s good for you. Keeps you healthy.

AJ: Yeah. Yeah, we keep learning new techniques that ginger… New health benefits I guess.

G: Clean underwear is pretty essential. I had to buy some new ones on this trip. I didn’t have enough time to do laundry.

AJ: They were like ummmm…

G: I just had to buy new underwear.

AJ: They were Batman underwear.

G: Yeah. Underoos.

AB: I approve. What about you two in the back? You guys have been quiet.

[Awkward silence]

AS: What are you asking?

AB: Are there any must have items you need when you’re on the road?

AS: Um.

D: I would say that we have to have a case of water.

G: [laughs] We do. We love water.

AJ: That is important.

A: A well-hydrated band.

D: I mean, like we don’t need keys we don’t need guitars.
Just water.

G: Sometimes we just play the bottles. [plays on a cup in
the van]

AJ: We freeze it at different temperatures.

G: Fill it to different heights.

AJ: Fill it to different heights.

AB: Like that part in Miss Congeniality.

G: Wow that was weird. I was just thinking about that.

AB: Mmmhmmm.

AJ: Whaaat?

G: Yeah.

AB: Yeah. There’s umm… Have you seen the movie?

AJ: [snorts/laughs]

AB: Probably not. Sandra Bullock has all these different glasses and she ends up playing them.

AJ: Is that the one where she’s an undercover cop?

AB: Yeah.

AJ: Ok

AB: She gets all fancied up.

G: Gussied up.

AJ: Undercover cop movies. Kindergarten Cop, Miss Congeniality, always the best crime [unintelligible]

G: Is there even more than those? Cause those are the only two I wanna…

AJ: Undercover Congeniality

G: Undercover Kindergartener?

AJ: No. No. The one where she pretends to be a nun.

G: Sister Act!

AJ: But she’s not really a cop but she’s still like, fish out of water.

AB: Isn’t she a gangsters wife?

AJ: Yeah. Something like that. That Whoppi.

AB: Alright, two more, well maybe three more questions. What’s your favorite guilty pleasure song or band for you guys?

G: Like, something we listen to? That we feel shameful about?

AB: Yes. Everyone has one of those.

[band mumbling]

G: Gesafaltelfish

AS: Gesaffelstein.

G: You don’t…Do you feel bad when you listen to it?

AS: I don’t feel guilty about it at all.

G: She said guilty pleasure song.

AB: Guilty pleasure song.

G: Aaron loves….

AS: I don’t feel guilty about anything I listen to.

G: Dak loves the band Phish

AB: Phish? Ok.

G: And we all feel bad for him.

[laughter]

AB: Oh, you guys are funny. All right, two more. What is a weird skill or talent no one would expect from you? Other than your musical abilities.

AJ: You mean collectively?

AB: No. Well, whatever works.

G: We’re really good at Frisbee.

AB: Frisbee?

G: We play everyday on tour. We’re like, we’re gonna hit the circuit I think. Aaron’s doing trick moves. He’s already doing tricks.

AB: Yeah? What about individually?

AJ: Um. We’re all pretty good at back flips. No one expects that when they see us.

G: We’re probably gonna hit the circuit with that too.

AB: Yeah?

AJ: Yeah. Unexpected back flips too. Like, we’ll just be ordering a beer the bartender will be like, and right when he says that, you do a back flip.

G: And then you’ll get the beer for free though.

AJ: Yeah.

AB: That’s what I was thinking. Ok, last one. If you could sum up Saint Motel in five words, what would they be?

AJ: Sexy

G: Sex

AJ: Sex

G: Just sex

AJ: Sex I guess with a bunch of x’s

G: [laughs]

AB: Ok. All right, that’s it!

Band: [clapping] Yay.

G: Yay.

AB: Thanks you guys.

G: We clap for ourselves. Yay. That’s a wrap on Saint Motel.

New Band Love: Gin Wigmore

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[Writer’s Note: I had this written up forever ago and just never got around to posting it. No idea why but here it is]

 

The first thing you need to know about Gin Wigmore is that she is a badass. The second thing you need to know about her is that she kicks ass.

I first saw Gin Wigmore at Warped Tour in Pomona at the end of the day and although I wasn’t familiar with her, I decided to stick around and see what she was like. It was the best decision I made all day, apart from going on the slip and slide to cool down. Gin has a wonderfully gritty voice that is truly captivating and I found myself getting closer to the stage the longer she played. With her blending of jazz, soul, folk, blues, and rock, Gin and her band evoke a feeling of nostalgia, New Orleans, and good times. Her newest release Gravel and Wine (produced by Butch Walker) has been on a continual loop in my truck. Get yours and join the Gin Club.

Check out one of my favorite songs: Man Like That

The Bard Chronicles: Song Preservation Society at Soda Bar 7/16/13

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If you were to cross The Milk Carton Kids and Mumford and Sons, the resulting offspring would be Song Preservation Society. Take the live show, melodic harmonies, simple instrumentation, and a passion for speaking from the heart and you have all of the important elements that make up this band. Admittedly, I was tired from a record number of musical outings by my current standards but watching them play more than made up for it. If you didn’t make it out to the Soda bar for their show, you can catch them August 25th supporting Truth & Salvage Co. at the Griffin. Check out their video Terra  below and peep the few decent photos from the show.

The Bard Chronicles: Better Looking People With Superior Ideas at Soma 7/13/13

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It’s been a long time since I’ve been to Soma. Actually, I tend to avoid that place and all it’s punk ass underage kids who think they know what’s up. However, when invited by a band to see their debut performance in San Diego, I’ll make an exception.

While attempting to haggle my way inside with my camera, I ended up meeting the band out front when they overheard me drop their name. Since I was only armed with emails and a Soundcloud link , I wasn’t really sure what to expect but I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised.

Despite it being a rather quiet Saturday at Soma, Better Looking People With Superior Ideas (whew that’s a mouthful) had some fans in the crowd. For a two person band, they create a surprisingly full sound and I was very happy to see a trumpet up on stage. Perhaps my favorite element of theirs was the use of a glockenspiel. Or was it a xylophone? Either way, I though the delicate tones were a great addition and a nice layer. My only wish for BLPWSI is that they find more of a concrete direction in their music. They was a wide range and variety from raging guitar to the delicate glockenspiel and it didn’t always feel like it was coming from the same band. I do see a lot of potential for growth and can’t wait to see where they go from here!

Check out my favorite song below and the gallery while you’re at it.

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The Bard Chronicles: Nico Vega and Crash Kings at The Griffin 7/11/13

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The last time I saw Nico Vega in San Diego was at the Casbah to a relatively rowdy crowd but it was by no means a sold out show. They did tour through here with Imagine Dragons playing the SDSU Open Air Theater but I didn’t attend that show.

Crash Kings have playing down at Griffin off and on during the year and I’ve noticed two separate shows there that I was unable to attend. Sad Amanda. Even sadder because I hadn’t seen them play in well over a year.

So what happens when you take two popular LA bands who are friends that even share a rehearsal space and you put them on the road together? In a word, amazingness.

Watching Crash Kings play for the first time in over a year was like no time had passed. Despite having a different drummer, their set was filled with the same enthusiasm as the first time I saw them years ago. And I had honestly forgotten how much that clavinet will rock a room. It was so refreshing to see a band rock out with a piano, keys, and a clavinet. I didn’t even miss the guitar.

It was fantastic to see them rock old favorite like “Mountain Man”, “It’s Only Wednesday,” and “14 Arms.”   Their set was a nice blend of old and new tunes and I have to tell you, those new tunes are awesome. Their set was so awesome, it inspired an encore because the crowd just wouldn’t stop yelling for them. You should really do yourself a favor and go pick up Dark of the Daylight  now.

Nico Vega is an amazing band. And you can tell they are fully on their A Game after having toured all over with Imagine Dragons earlier this year. They are tighter than I’ve ever seen them and somehow even more dynamic than before. Maybe it’s the drums. The tiny stage was hardly big enough to contain them as evidenced by only one painted barrel on stage and Aja’s continual departure from the stage.

At one point during the set, someone yelled for them to play “Wooden Dolls” and the band all sat down on the stage and quietly played the song. I should also mention that one of the barrels was dedicated to an audience member’s deceased pet turtle and Aja informed the crowd that she would be taking it home with her after the show. How sweet! What was even sweeter was seeing other old favorites like “Gravity” and “Beast” mixed in with all the snazzy new tunes from their forthcoming album Lead to Light . If you love Nico Vega or just want some cool stuff from them (their designs are rad) then you should pledge your support here. I’m personally getting a shirt and the font that is Rich’s handwriting.

 

Check out more pics in the gallery below!

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