Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Icky Thump!

I don't know about the rest of the world, but I'm excited for June 19th. Why you ask? It's only the date for the White Stripe's new release, Icky Thump. Honestly at this point there are few things Jack White could do to dissapoint critics and fans, and I'm sure Icky Thump is going to provide evidence of that. Besides being their first cd with a title track, it's also going to feature some fancy trumpet playing from an unknown spanish player, I can only imagine where Jack White managed to find him. Word has it that this new release is going back to their garage rock roots, which is exciting indeed, although I can't say I didn't like Get Behind Me Satan. Mark your calendars and clear out your tents, the white stripes are coming back.


Afghan Banana Stand Interview

A Personal Look at the Past, Present and Future of Afghan Banana Stand
Interviewed by Bob Reynolds
March 29, 2007

Afghan Banana Stand is
Paul Staples- Guitar
Vint Whitcomb- Vocals, some guitar
Aaron Mitchell- Bass
Austin Turner- Drums

For this interview we’ve managed to sit down with rising stars Afghan Banana Stand, a Punk/Rock Band from Mid-coast Maine, who have been on fire lately. Despite a near fatal overdose by lead guitarist Paul Staples last fall the band has plans for a new EP and a Canadian Tour this summer. The group, who recently split up, is back together again with more vigor than ever. We recently sat down with the band for an interview last week.

Bob: So I understand you guys have had a rough history, can you tell us a little about it.
Paul: Well we started out as a garage band like many others. We released our first EP in October 2004, titled Telling it like it is. The band at this point included myself, Vint and a few others who have since mover on to other projects. We recorded it in my basement with a karaoke Mic, it was pretty bad. A few people did enjoy it, citing its rough edges as a plus, considering we are a punk rock band. There are a lot of people who enjoyed its raw edge. But we didn’t win over many fans, so we started playing shows around the area and began to gather a strong following.

Bob: Now tell us a little bit about your breakthrough, Lesbian Dopeheads on Mopeds.
Vint: I’ll take this one. With our second release, we saved up our funds and moved into a professional studio, which really helped a lot. Dopeheads was really our breakthrough I think, or at the very least what got our foot in the door. We recorded in early 2005, I think it was around March or April, and then released it that summer on our own independent label. There weren’t too many copies because we were doing it ourselves, but we used the album to shop around different labels. Eventually in early 2006, the Indie Label Flying Squid Records out of Boston got a hold of the record and really enjoyed it, signing us that summer.

Bob: From what I hear your second album should be having a wider release soon?
Paul: Actually, the label has already put out a limited release in a few select areas to get our name out. A wider release is planned for this summer around the same time our New EP should be coming out. We’ve talked with the label and they’ve heard some of our new material, and both parties feel our upcoming EP will be a very strong release, so we’re really banking on that one more. At this point I wouldn’t go and try to find Dopeheads in stores, depending on how the EP ships, we may see more of it then.

Bob: It sounds like you guys have a bright future, let’s talk about the upcoming Canadian tour.
Aaron: It’s going to be very exciting. We’re mainly touring Quebec and parts of Newfoundland and Ontario. At the moment we have about 14 dates lined up, and our label’s trying to secure a few more.

Bob: Now are you guys playing at any big venues during the tour or should we expect more of a nightclub/bar scene thing going on.
Aaron: It’s going to be a mix, we have a few larger venues in store, including a few arenas and possibly a festival, but for the most part the majority will be in smaller clubs and venues as we work on increasing our name recognition and widening our fan base. At this point we’re still a relative unknown outside of Quebec City, for some reason we have a solid following there, and it’s really all thanks to our label that we’ve been given such a great opportunity to play this tour.
Bob: It seems we’re running out of time so this will be the final question. Can you tell us anything about the new EP coming out?
Austin: We can tell you a few things about it. The tentative title is Brazilian Bikini Tan, although that is subject to change, and we’re looking at releasing about 4 to 6 songs on it, depending on what we feel is our strongest recorded material at that time. For this album, we’ve really focused on reworking and refining some of our older and best material. We know we’re working with good material, and now we just need to get it on tape.

Bob: Well thank you so much for talking with us today, I really wish we had more time, there’s a lot of other subjects we could have delved into such as a few of the personal tragedies which occured last fall or your motivational side project Kickin’ The Habit. Hopefully we can have you guys back here soon. For more information on Afghan Banana Stand check out their myspace at myspace.com/afghanbananastand, or their band webpage afghanbananastand.com which should be up and running within the next few months.

The Kings of Leon- Because of the Times review

One of the top indie bands of the last few years has just come back with their third album and perhaps their best. The 13 track album titled Because of the Times tarts off vicariously and never lets up. The new Kings of Southern Rock are back, and their first single, On Call, is easily one of my favorites of the year so far. Built on the back of a pounding bassline, this is one infectious tune that you will find tunneled in your head by the end of the week. If it's the only thing you listen to this week, go out and find Because of the Times. The time is right for the Kings of Leon.


1-"Knocked Up" – 7:10
2-"Charmer" – 2:56
3-"On Call" – 3:21
4-"McFearless" – 3:09
5-"Black Thumbnail" – 3:59
6-"My Party" – 4:10
7-"True Love Way" – 4:02
8-"Ragoo" – 3:01
9-"Fans" – 3:36
10-"The Runner" – 4:16
11-"Trunk" – 3:57
12-"Camaro" – 3:06
13-"Arizona" – 4:50


The New England Music Review

Hello everybody, we are the New England Music Review, we've been around for a little bit, but we just decided to start publishing some of our past articles and interviews on here to widen our audience. First established in late 2003, me and my brother would interview local bands and do features on upcoming cd releases and articles for a monthly newsletter we put out. The newsletter is no more, but the NEMR lives on. We're stationed in New England, (where is a top secret, mwahahaha), but we do articles on whatever bands tickle our fancy and interviews with those who will let us. So now that you know who we are, enjoy the site.


PS- Just a sidenote, the first several articles are going to be highlights from the last month to give people an idea of what we do. New articles will be arriving soon.