Release
Baseball Punx documentary streaming now

It’s America’s favorite pastime, Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Ted Williams and Sandy Koufax. These are some of the more notable names who have shaped America’s game. Baseball is as American as apple pie. Punk rock on the other hand is like pop music’s bastard brother. Joey Ramone, Joe Strummer, Greg Graffin, and Henry Rollins are some of the names that helped shape punk rock. So is it possible that a parallel might be drawn between the high-priced spectacle that is the world of professional sports and the down and out DIY of the punk rock world?

Baseball Punx is out to draw that parallel, while sports doesn’t always find itself embraced in the alternative world of punk music. The comparison’s however that could be drawn between the two are undeniable. Admittedly, million dollar contracts, chartered jets, and luxury motels might be a far cry from tour vans, greasy bars and strangers couches. However underneath all that baseball is among the more progressive pro sports leagues. Embracing LBGTQ players and fans alike baseball has done an admirable job of trying to end the homophobic, macho, misogynistic attitudes that are unfortunately still present in many locker rooms around the world. At the same time baseball doesn’t try to silence the players and fans from voicing their displeasure with the state of politics or the injustices of modern-day America.

Likewise it could be said that it wasn’t long ago the punk rock scene was just as full of homophobic, macho, misogynistic attitudes that make the sports world an uncomfortable place for those with alternative lifestyles. However over the years the punk scene has grown up and become a much more all-inclusive space, while also still being the conscience of America as well as the voice for the voiceless.

The ups and downs of America can be tied to both baseball and punk rock. You may have noticed that punk rock is suddenly making an impact in the music world for the first time since that Bush fella was president, and that’s no coincidence. While the NFL faces criticism for players kneeling for the anthem and the NFL turning it’s back on those players MLB has shown support for players who wish to make a “statement”, and while there is still backlash MLB isn’t blaming those players for decreased ratings.

Having more than ninety years on punk rock baseball has clearly had more time to change with the times. While both have grown and become more inclusive there’s still lot’s of work that needs to be done. But as a person who grew up in the homophobic, macho, misogynistic world of highly competitive sports, my escape from that world was punk rock and I never looked back, but now that I have I’m happy to see that the world of sports is starting to come into the 21st century. Just as I’m happy to go to a punk rock show and see people of all shapes, colours and lifestyles.

Baseball Punx does a great job of drawing the many comparisons I’ve outlined above, it’s a great piece. It’ll make you think, the people and bands in the documentary do a great job of giving us insight into why they enjoy baseball and even love it in some cases, but it also shows us how far we’ve come and how far we still have to go. Do yourself a favor and check it out below and be sure to check out the Baseball Punx website here. Besides how many of you know who Scott Radinsky is and why he’s the most awesome pitcher to have towed the rubber in MLB?


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Recording
Bad Religion tease new album

It’s been five years since Bad Religion last released any new material, but a tweet from frontman Greg Graffin suggests that he and guitarist Brett Gurewitz are in the studio working on songs for the band’s next record. The tweet simply says, “New songs in the pipeline….”

The new Bad Religion album will be their full-length studio album since 2013’s True North as well as their first with Mike Dimkich (replacing Greg Hetson) on guitar and Jamie Miller (replacing Brooks Wackerman) on drums. The band last released the EP Christmas Songs, which also came out in 2013.

When the record will be released is unknown, but we’ll keep you updated as details arise.


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Tour
German skate punks Straightline announce Australian tour with Blind Man Death Stare

Straightline is striking out next month on their first ever Australian tour. They’ll be joined by Melbourne’s Blind Man Death Stare and a slew of supporting acts.

You can get tickets at Blind Man Death Stare’s website, and find the tour dates below.


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Video
Belgian punks Captain Kaiser premiere video for “Dog Days on Deck”

Captain Kaiser has released a video for the title track of their upcoming album, “Dog Days on Deck.”

The album will be out on February 23rd. You can check out the trippy time-travel video below and preorder the album from Bearded Punk Records.


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Video
Britain’s Vile Assembly premiere video for “Division of Labor”

British punks Vile Assembly have premiered a new video for their track “Division of Labor.” The band has a classic 70s punk sound and goes back to the roots, singing about anarchy and corporate greed.

Check out the video for “Division of Labor” below!


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Tour
Western Settings to tour with Dead To Me and DFMK this month

Western Settings will be playing a string of shows with Dead To Me in Arizona, California, and Nevada starting tomorrow. DFMK will join them for all but one date.

In April, Western Settings will be going on a European tour with Nothington.

Check out the list of dates for both tours below.


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General News
Against Me! and Turbonegro switching performance days for Punk Rock Bowling

Due to complications in scheduling, Against Me! and Turbonegro are switching performance days for this year’s Punk Rock Bowling. Turbonegro will be performing on Sunday, May 27th at 7:25, and Against Me! will perform on Monday, May 28th at 7:25. You can check out the updated flyer below.


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Video
Better Days (St. Louis hardcore) premiere video for new song

St. Louis hardcore act Better Days has premiered a new video. You can check out the video for the untitled song below. The band is planning a new release for this year.


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Album Review
Album Review: Great Wight – ‘The Suburbs Have Ruined My Life’

When it comes to emo, I like all the stuff that runs with the pack, but not necessarily what runs in its center. In other words, I like everything that gets swept along with the genre’s associations– Hot Water Music, Sorority Noise, Modern Baseball– but I rarely spin American Football, Foxing, or Tiny Moving Parts. Great Wight is another of those bands, one that could tour with emo bands, or sad-sack pop punk bands and straddle labels enough to spark arguments for the rest of their career. The truth is, Great Wight write catchy, confessional punk jams with an afro/queer focus. Their album, The Suburbs Have Ruined My Life is a tribute to punk rock’s continued (but under-realized) foundation as a genre for outsiders, as well as a showcase to Great Wight’s expert, emotive songwriting.

What captured me immediately were how easily the words formed melodies, maintaining an intimate and conversational tone, while still being musical. There’s something so effortless about the composition across The Suburbs Have Ruined My Life that you can’t help but feel you’ve already belted them out at show by the time the proverbial needle lifts off the last track. In this sense, they remind me of Sorority Noise, who have always excelled at that sort of easy, natural sounding cadence. Using this songwriting mode, vocalist Erik Garlington, talks about depression, the scene, being black, being atheist, and being queer. This may sound too specific to relate to on a larger scale, but as a straight white male, I found it had an immediate honest quality that made me think of the unsettling openness of early Against Me! It’s great stuff, that appeals to a common experience, all of the minutiae hanging under an umbrella labeled ‘Being Different.’

The songs are great all around, from opener “Curtain’s Up! It’s Showtime,” a beacon for like minds that cements a lot of Great Wight’s musical elements early on, to ending track “The Come Up,” a sort of spunky cowboy chord send-off where Garlington sings, “I hope I never have to write these songs again.” Good stuff, from start to finish. Authentic and vulnerable; sometimes confrontational in songs like “Not Black Enough,” a standout track that begins with “hey man, we need to talk,” and goes on to talk about the black experience, and what it does and doesn’t entail.

One of my favorite songs on the album was “Starring Michael Fassbender.” For how much punk likes to talk about sexuality, the genre clams up like an eleven year old having the ‘changing body’ talk when it comes to sex. “Starring Michael Fassbender” is presented as a sultry, unabashed, slithering conversation with a lover. There are so many great lines on this track, that I could probably quote the whole song, but it’s easy to imagine it as an intimate moment where two people begin to reach out of their repression and acknowledge, “what makes your back sweat and your fingers wet,” “….the things that won’t make your parents proud.”

The Suburbs Have Ruined My Life is a stunning debut. When an original voice like this comes out of nowhere, with such a developed songwriting talent to boot, one has to take notice. Great Wight has the potential to be spoken of in the same breath as all the other great emo bands of the day, and it’s hard to imagine a day when they won’t have just as rabid fans, packed into a club and hell-bent on transcendence. These are words meant to be sung back by the crowd, melody and lyrics joined in the holiest communion– the completion of a conversation.

4.5/5



Video
Bratakus release video for “No More Love Songs” on valentines day

One of my favourite bands, Bratakus, have released a music video for their brilliant song “No More Love Songs”. Check it out below.

The band have some gigs coming up this April which you can see below the video. I highly recommend getting to a show if you can, and if you haven’t picked up their album Target Grrrl then you are missing out on one of the best albums of 2017!


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Tour
The Creepshow announce 2018 Australian tour “Death at my Door”

Canadian punks The Creepshow have just announced that they’ll be shipping off to Australia for their “Death at my Door” tour with label mates and ska punks, The Resignators.

The Creepshow is fresh off of their release of “Death at my Door” in Octzober of 2017.

Check out the tour dates below, and pick up a pair of tickets here.


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Divided Heaven announces West Coast tour

LA based folk punk act Divided Heaven has announced a full band tour. Fronted by Singer-Songwriter, Jeff Berman, the band will be touring the West Coast in support of their 2017 release, the Pacific Avenue EP.

Head down below for full tour dates.