Posts Tagged ‘Music’

I’m gonna be honest, it’s been kind of a rough week, but there were some awesome parts!

For instance:

The Oats played at Don Pedro’s Friday night and rocked the place (naturally). I had to scrape together a mailing list signup due to shitty circumstances, but we made it work, and got 7 new fans!

Smiley faces are infinitely better than giant Xs

Checked out the Highline for the first time! Why haven’t I been there before?? It’s beautiful. And has delicious gelato (pistachio fucking ROCKS)


Went to a show at Bowery Ballroom (by myself, because I’m cool like that – also I’m writing a review for it) and discovered this AWESOME rhythm-based, bass heavy band, Brick + Mortar.

And of course saw River City Extension, who were fantastic, unsurprisingly. There were, however, several drunk uber fans that made the experience significantly more sweaty and mosh pit-y (at a folk show? Really??)

I really should be writing that review, but the events of this week have left me emotionally drained, so I think I’ll devote today to listening to Muse, Mumford & Sons, and just not a giving a damn.

Who’s with me?


Muse – Plug In Baby

Genre: Rock, Alternative, Symphonic Rock

Listen if you like: Radiohead, Queen, Epic Music



Mumford & Sons – White Blank Page

Genre: Folk, Indie

Listen if you like: Bright Eyes, River City Extension, The Head and The Heart

I know pretty much everyone says this, but good lord this summer is going by too quickly. I’m almost halfway through and I feel like there’s still way too much I want to do. Looks like I’ll have to cut back to NO sleep. That’s feasible right?

Here are some snapshots of my 4th week:

Went to see a band who are here all the way from Mexico called The Oats in Williamsburg and noticed this brilliant number marking system. Dominoes. Who would have thought?

Saw my boy Evan play at Googie’s Lounge! 4 weeks in NYC and he’s already had two gigs. This kid’s going places.

Saw this and got very confused…Kind of dark for subway art, don’t you think??

Found a FREE SHOW (two best words ever) for White Rabbits (<3) in Williamsburg with openers We Barbarians. It was awesome to go to a bigger show like that, I’ve been going to too many open mics.

But the best part of my week had to be enjoying the sweet chewiness of a Now and Later. Like a cool kid from the 90s.

Does anyone remember these things?? I used to eat them by the handful.


So pay attention (please).

The band I mentioned at the beginning of the post (The Oats) will now be managed by yours truly! Get ready to hear a lot more about them, because it’s about to take over my life and I really believe in them as a band. I promise they won’t be the band of the week ALL the time (I guess). If you like The Strokes, Arctic Monkeys, or The Pixies, you should probably check them out and come to a show or two. If you like them, email to be added to the mailing list!

I’m also adding a new feature to my Sunday updates. I’ve been going to so many shows every week, I decided to start keeping track. So here’s to introducing the show counter! (try to contain your excitement)



So, in conclusion, stay away from alligators and please, feed a Mexican.


Art Decade – Western Sunrise

Genre: Symphonic Rock, Progressive Rock

Listen if you like: The Mars Volta, Muse, Radiohead

Based in Boston, Art Decade is a titillating combination of Classical, Pop and Punk Rock, known as “Symphonic Rock.” Ben Talmi was raised on classical music and received in-depth classical training while attending Berklee College of Music – and it shows.

Their debut LP, Western Sunrise, starts off with no pretenses – a playfully descending strings line ushers in the beginning of “A Lie” – to let you know this is more than your average rock album. The classical introduction is quickly followed by a high (and highly distorted) vocal line and a rockin’ drum groove to prove it’s inspired by more than Mozart.

The intricacies and layers of each song don’t overshadow the clear rock influences; the epic feel of the album brings to mind the likes of Muse and Radiohead, while the vocals and screaming guitar take us to the Alternative Punk realm of Brand New and Forgive Durden. The thought put into each aspect of the album reflects the band’s understanding of music, and their mastery of both theory and popular music. The title track exemplifies this, with strings woven throughout, supporting and elevating the entire song.

Lyrically, the band sticks to simple ideas, mainly of love, meaning, and hope. The album starts off with a cynical thought, “As usual nothing’s perfect/as usual you’re not there” and stays consistently in a dark place, with such emotional lyrics as “Looking down on myself, it’s clear/I’m not supposed to be here,” until the two final songs, “Daydream” and “Kids and Kings,” end on a more uplifting note.

Despite the technicality of Western Sunrise, it’s not over-thought. Each song manages to meld the multitude of genres together and avoid coming off as pretentious or inaccessible. With the ability to get you singing and nodding along, and the scope to inspire any music scholar,Western Sunrise crosses borders and challenges the status quo of popular music.


Trampled By Turtles – Wait So Long

Genre: Folk, Bluegrass

Listen if you like: Punch Brothers, Three Tall Pines, insane finger picking




Second week down! I can’t believe I’ve even been here that long. This week was fairly insane; I didn’t have two seconds to myself, and I loved it (for the most part). Here are some pictures to recap:

Went to about 4 open mic nights this week. I never thought I’d have friends so talented.

Walked nearly four miles in the rain…for no reason. The life of an intern.

Berklee was here…

Got to see Lara Marling for free in Prospect Park! She’s pretty badass, and she has an English accent.

Met a goat on the street. NBD.

Couldn’t ask for a better way to spend my time than playing some music next to that skyline

Tip for making friends: Play music in the hallways for about an hour. Some people may quietly hate you, but the music lovers will come out in droves.

Tuesday I’ll give you guys a peak at the daily life of an intern in the music business, so if you’re thinking about interning at some point, you might want to check it out!

I’ll leave you with this:

My Life. Through Music.

Posted: June 12, 2012 in About Me, Bands I Like
Tags: , ,

-This post is about to get very self indulgent. If you couldn’t give a rat’s ass about my personal life and are just waiting for the music reviews and business articles, skip it! If you’d like a glimpse into my life, this is the place to be.-

I have always had a close, meaningful relationship with music. Sure I’ve wandered into embarrassing territory (I was young), and I’ve gotten stuck in ruts, but I could easily segment my life based on what I was listening to at the time. And that’s just what I’ll do. Hopefully there will be some bands on here you know, as well as some you don’t. I’m all about discovery.


This was a good time for me. I didn’t have to worry about ANYTHING. I grew up in a small town in Ohio and my parents both worked. My dad’s a civil engineer and (at the time) my mom was an aerobics instructor. I have an older brother who has brighter red hair than me…he always believed I stole our parents’ attention as kids. My parents are the most wonderful people I could hope would raise me; they knew that I loved music and singing from a young age and encouraged that passion completely.

Those of you who have parents who discourage the pursuit of music, I don’t know how you do it, but it’s fantastic that you do. Keep on keepin’ on.

Music that defined the era: Classic rock, second wave punk – Ozzy Osborne, Ted Nugent, The Offspring, The Presidents of The United States of America, Queensryche


Wakeboarding is what I remember most from this segment. I learned the water sport at the tale end of being 6 (summer birthday) and competed in amateur competitions for 2 years. My parents have always been very entrepreneurial, which is where I get my desire to be my own boss, and my mom ran a boat business at the time. I’m pretty sentimental about the summers of too much sun and competing against boys twice my age (and winning, you know how I do). I also started a private elementary school, which, in its PRIME, had about 100 students for K-8th grade. It was one of those schools where we called teachers by their first names and didn’t have bells to end each period.

This is also where I met my best friend of 13 years, Courtney. She introduced me to Pokemon and that was that. Bonded for life. To your right, you’ll see one of our *rare* moments of insanity==>

When I transferred to public school I was way ahead in math and way behind in science. My school wasn’t perfect, but it encouraged me to be independent and, more importantly, taught me that authority figures are human beings, just like everyone else, at a young age.

Music that defined the era: (This is kind of a “lost era”) Boy Bands, more classic rock – NSYNC, Backstreet Boys, Avril Lavigne, Styx, REO Speedwagon, Rush


Easily the worst years of my pre-college life, middle school was nothing short of torturous. The transfer from private to public school was such a shift, my innocent little self was not prepared for the jolt. I’d never really experienced bullying or “cliques” or any of the typical social pains of school because everyone was kind of forced to hang out with each other at my old school. In a new class of over 200 students, I was pretty much lost. On top of that, Courtney had moved out of town and I could only see her every once in a while. Luckily, I had my music as a sanctuary. I was taking piano lessons, private singing lessons, and was accepted into a very prestigious children’s choir in Ohio. I also began to acquire a little bit of chub by 8th grade, which was lost after a choir trip to Europe where my picky eating prevented me from eating anything but bread, followed by a month-long camp that kept me active. Going into high school (Catholic high school, no more public school for me), I was excited to find a place, and I did. I met my two best friends of high school, Katie and Cate, on the first day and we were pretty much inseparable the whole first two years.

Music that defined the era: 70s and 80s rock, post-grunge, Brit Pop – Journey, REO Speedwagon, Bon Jovi, Def Leppard, Creed, Nickelback (these two were later banned from my ears…), McFly (Cate, Katie, and I obsessed for a few years)


Oh my. Ooooh my my my. Boys. Boys are what took up my thoughts during my Junior and Senior years of high school. What can I say? I was a late bloomer.

My first few forays into relationships and attraction were filled with nerves, anxiety-induced weight loss, intense connections, and life-altering rejections. But mostly I was just being over-dramatic. I also used my teenage angst to start writing more seriously and picked up the guitar to be able to actually back up the lyrics and melodies in my head. At the end of my senior year, I was rejected from my top two choices for college and my first real boyfriend, and I started the worst job I’ve ever had, all in during spring break. With all of these seemingly dead ends thrown my way, it’s safe to say I was at a pretty low point in my life going into college.

Music that defined the era: angst, Alternative Rock, new folk, pop punk, Female Rock Singers – Taking Back Sunday, Bright Eyes, Hellogoodbye, All Time Low, Paramore, Flyleaf


My first year of college was not so great, to say the least. Somehow I wound up surrounded by people with some serious issues, who didn’t like me all that much. I spent most of that year in a relationship that was maintained through manipulation and threats. Again, the light in the tunnel was my music. I wrote more that year than I think I ever have. I also reapplied to my top school choice (Berklee College of Music). Persistence pays off and I’m now attending that school. After i was accepted, I really took a lot more initiative in finding other musicians and that summer was the best one of my life. I played several shows and felt so on top of the world preparing for Boston.

If I hadn’t had that year, I really don’t think I would have appreciated the opportunity I was given coming to Boston.

Music that defined the era: Alternative Rock, Hard Rock, FolkCartel, Paramore, Flyleaf, Rise Against, Taking Back Sunday, Anberlin


Berklee ftw! I was so incredibly lucky to be able to take advantage of everything that school has to offer. I went in with a determination I had lost over the previous few years, and damn did it pay off. My first year I joined the Songwriters Club and volunteered to do EVERYTHING I could. The president at the time really liked my competence (his words) and basically became my mentor for that year. I ran my first events and shows and met so many amazing and talented people. This is also when I realized that I’m not meant to write songs for a living, which was a blessing and a curse. I always dreamt of performing, but when I tried it, I kind of really hated the pressure and never being satisfied with a performance. I still write occasionally, but it’s mostly just for my benefit. 19 was when I realized I want to be successful, not famous.

Over the summer I lost some friends and made some mistakes. Mostly due to the full discovery of alcohol upon entering Berklee. There are times I wish things happened differently, but I see it as a way to learn and not fuck up again. Which I’m sure I will some way or another, but hopefully not too badly!

I also met many more boys, had a few heartaches, and learned how to move on quickly (i.e. write a song about it).

Music that defined the era: Alternative Rock, Dubstep, Folk, Berklee music – Passion Pit, Muse, The White Stripes, Mumford & Sons, Skrillex,  songwriters at Berklee (Charles Johnson, Jesse Beauchamp, Giorgi, I could go on)


At this point (my second year at Berklee) I was running the Songwriters Club and founded and ran the Ski and Snowboard Club. I also wrote for the Music Business Journal briefly and tried just about everything under the sun that I might be interested in. I met the guy I dated for 8 months (longest relationship yet!) and that support allowed me to buckle down and get a lot done. My grades improved, I ran two of the biggest student run concerts at Berklee and managed the other 3-4 shows we put on a year. The only downside was that my social life just tanked. As in it was essentially non-existent for a while. Again, learning experience.

I applied for the internship program in New York in the Spring semester, searched for internships obsessively, and found some pretty fantastic places to work for the summer, including the school magazine.

Music that defined the era: Alternative/Blues Rock, Folk, Dubstep, Blues/Jazz, jam sessions – The Black Keys, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Nina Simone, The White Stripes, Punch Brothers, Skrillex, jam sessions…which I didn’t take part in because I can’t improvise to save my life.

That pretty much brings us up to date on things you probably didn’t know about me. It’s pretty much impossible to sum up a life in a few paragraphs, so I might go into more depth about some things as I feel like it (if I feel like it), but mostly I’ll post about my current life and about the music industry.

Questions? Comments? Concerns?

Want to know more about my life as an atheist in a Catholic school?

Hit me up below, or follow me on Twitter/Facebook. Fuck yeah, social media.

It’s no secret that I love music. In fact, it’s one of the first things you’ll learn after meeting me. In these weekly posts I’ll spread the joy and let you know what band I’m really diggin’ at the time. I’ll also put a song if there’s one I’m really stuck on. Could be a new band, an establish band, or some washed up rockers who really should watch Spinal Tap.


River City Extension – Today I Feel Like I’m Evolving

Genre: Folk, Bluegrass

Listen if you like: Mumford and Sons, The Avett Brothers






My weekend, in a nutshell (with pictures):

Found an AWESOME little cafe on my first day in the city, Berkli Parc Cafe. I highly recommend the Chipotle sandwich. Delicious.

After my first day as an intern, I got a great reminder why I do the work that I do. Bear Language at The Bitter End. If you like Radiohead or Muse, please check them out, and then go see them live.

Wished I could be half as cool as this man. Just playing the saw. nbd.

Had the realization that, no, I’m not in Boston anymore. And I’m OK with that.

Why? This view:

And this one.

Goodnight New York