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DS Exclusive Interview: Laura Jane Grace talks live album, Emmys, being a trans parent, and more

Against Me! played an explosive set at the legendary Tavastia Club in Helsinki on August 11, 2015; the band’s fourth visit to Finland. Before the show I got to ask Laura Jane Grace some questions around the upcoming live album, “23 Live Sex Acts”, her Emmy nomination being a trans musician parent and more.

Check out the interview below.



Dying Scene Session: Jason Tankerley (Energy) performs “They” from his solo EP, “The Infection”

While the unofficial end of summer might be just a week-or-so away, you haven’t heard the end of the Dying Scene Sessions just yet! We’re stoked to bring you the latest installment, just in time for the weekend.

Dying Scene recently had the privilege of catching up with Jason Tankerley for the second time. Perhaps best known from his role in Boston-area punk band Energy, Tankerley released a six-song solo EP, The Infection, earlier this year. In our newest Dying Scene Session, Tankerley performed a bare-bones version of the track “They.” Check out the video below!

Energy’s last album, A Tribute To The Misfits, was released for free download on February 18, 2014. The band are next slated to appear at Boston’s Burning 3 in mid-September alongside acts like The Warning Shots, Lenny Lashley’s Gang of One, Jared Hart (The Scandals), The Blue Bloods, Duck & Cover and more; check out details here. Like what you hear from this DS Session? Stream The Infection in it’s entirety right here.

 



DS Photo Gallery: Fat Wrecked for 25 Years: SF Day One – NOFX, Sick Of It All, Me First, Strung Out, Swingin Utters, Bracket, Western Addiction, Night Birds, toyGuitar

This past weekend, Fat Wreck Chords reached the climax of their string of 25th anniversary shows. The party began earlier this month in Ontario, and loads of Fat bands toured around the East Coast and Midwest celebrating all things Fat, before the big ’2 Day Blow-Out’ at Thee Parkside in San Francisco (the tour ended in LA the following day, but living in SF I’m supposed to hate LA or something). A whole city block was shut down to play host to over 20 bands over the weekend, and early Saturday morning I headed over to see what was in store.

toyGuitar was probably the best band to start the weekend, with their pearly chords, surf rock style, and catchy riffs. Even though Miles, Jack, Paul, and Rosie were first to take the stage, the local favorites drew a huge crowd to get the day properly underway.

Okay, ears ready? Heart pumping? You awake yet? If not, Night Birds will take care of that no problem. The stage presence of frontman Brian Gorsegner is something I implore every punk fan to witness. In your face, emotional, but most importantly on point – he brings an added element to the set that was much appreciated by fans.

Western Addiction kept the high-energy flowing as the sun hit it’s high point of the day. Well hydrated with liquid courage, the crowd really began to move to another gritty set.

Bracket is a band I have never seen before, and probably will never see again (unless I get to see guitarist Angelo Celli as he expands his solo work). That being said, I have been rocking to “2Rak005″ since I first heard it on the “Fat Music For Fat People” compilation, and when that track graced my eardrums I was both transplanted back to my youth, as well as sentimental to where I was and what this was all about.

Miles and Jack were back on stage, joining Johnny Peebucks, Darius Koski, and new drummer Luke Ray….otherwise known as Swingin’ Utters. I love these guys, and Johnny’s on-stage antics are great to be a part of. Think it’s all psycho faces and face punches? Take a look at Darius and you’ll think you’re in a blues club with his cool, suave strumming. Have a gander at Miles and you may just get stricken by those dimples and then nothing else matters. And Jack, well he just has a style all his own.

The night’s list of bands looked like my childhood playlist as Strung Out prepared to perform to a now-packed house. I always get blinders when I shoot, and sometimes the music takes backseat to the shots, however I had to put the camera down for “Exumation of Virginia Madison” and just rock out. One of my old-time favorites.

Here’s where the progression of bands lost me. I understand Fat Mike needs a break from playing both Me First & The Gimme Gimmes and NOFX in one night, but I thought they might’ve been better placed after Swingin’ Utters or maybe even on the following day, switching with Dead To Me or something. It seemed a little bizarre to transition from the light-hearted Me First to a much more rugged Sick Of It All. Maybe that was the organizers’ intention – anyway, I don’t call the shots, I just critique them. What’s to say about Me First? Their shows are total fun, party-oriented, and often include a little improv comedy from the musicians. I suppose it was a nice break before Sick Of It All.

New York hardcore legends Sick Of It All blast to the stage like a blitzkrieg and barely give you time to catch your breath. The band is intense, in your face, and you can always count on guitarist Pete Koller to drive the energy with his jumps, kicks, and overall exuberant performance. I love seeing these guys.

As the sun was beginning to slip beyond the horizon, headliners NOFX filled what little space was left on Wisconsin Street. The band played for about an hour, the majority of which I spent shooting or side stage looking on with delight. One of my highlights was their performance of “Linoleum”, always a favorite and it gets the crowd going nuts. It’s awesome to see the longevity of all these bands and musicians – both in popularity and capability. Chalk it up to a fuzzy memory but I believe a cover of Rancid’s “Radio” was played as well, which I’ve loved since the two did a split back in 2002. All-day music festivals are always a test of endurance and sun/food/liquid management but when the night starts coming to an end I’m always left wanting more. Thankfully, this party had a Day Two, coming soon…

Have a look at photos from all of the day’s performance below, and stay tuned for Day Two in the following days.

***Big thanks to Vanessa, Jason, Amanda, Audrey, all the staff at Thee Parkside, and everyone else that made this weekend an incredible celebration of being wrecked for 25 years!***



7 Buried Gems From Bandcamp You Need To Check Out

Never Draw Back
Photo by David Corrochano

We here at Dying Scene have heard our reader’s collective voice loud and clear and after getting such wonderful feedback from the first Buried Gems from Bandcamp feature, we’ve decided to make it a (hopefully) regularly occurring list. Once again, we have explored the depths of the punk treasure trove and this time, we have surfaced with seven stunning jewels that we’re betting you haven’t heard before because we sure as hell hadn’t! So, give them all a listen below and if you like what you hear, head over to Da‘Camp and drop some wampum!



DS Exclusive: Mike McColgan on new Street Dogs, Wreck The Halls…and teases reunion with his former band?

Street Dogs – photo by Paul Caufield

Normally when we conduct an interview here at Dying Scene, we take this introductory space to give a bit of a primer on what’s to follow; to boil everything from the discussion down its essential forms and give the reader a concentrated taste of what’s to come. If we’re feeling especially froggy, sometimes we’ll flesh it out into more of a feature-style story; other times we’ll give you just a tease. Consider this the latter, in part because there are some people that are so thoughtful and compelling to talk to that you really want to make sure that you digest every word. While our scene contains its fair share of such personalities, there are a scant few that are more thoughtful and compelling than Mike McColgan.

Whether its been in his role as frontman of working class Boston punk band Street Dogs or in his role as a founding member in Celtic punk stalwarts Dropkick Murphys, McColgan has been a visible, vocal member of the Boston and at-large punk communities for the better part of the last twenty years (more on that later). While his current band may not be on the road quite as often as it used to be for myriad reasons, the present lineup (from left to right above: McColgan, longtime bassist Johnny Rioux, Pete Sosa on drums, Matt Pruitt and Lenny Lashley on guitar) is arguably as tight and powerful as its ever been.

The band are getting set to play the Hi Fi Rock Fest in Long Beach, California, next month, followed by the triumphant hometown return of their annual “Wreck The Halls” shows. The format for “Wreck The Halls” will be a little different this year, as the band will take over the Brighton Music Hall in Boston for three consecutive nights, with each night’s set including one of their first three albums in their entirety. That task is made especially daunting because not only have the newer members not played or practiced a handful of those songs, Rioux and McColgan themselves have a handful of songs from their seminal triumverate of albums that they’ve never played either.

We were privileged to catch up with McColgan for a discussion that started out as focusing on all things Street Dogs (Hi Fi Rock Fest, “Wreck The Halls,” new material in the works for early next year). McColgan is always quick with a complimentary word, whether it be about his bandmates, his hometown, or different bands that he’s shared the stage with and been influenced by. While it might come across as hyperbole from other individuals, the always thoughtful McColgan is his trademark gruff Boston accent and measured tone evokes nothing but honesty, leading to an interesting discussion on McColgan’s own legacy and the importance of celebrating benchmark moments in his own lengthy career, including what will be the 20th anniversary of the founding of the Dropkick Murphys next year. Any special events planned? To quite always thoughtful McColgan himself, “all will be revealed in time.” Check out our Q&A below.

 



DS Exclusive: Darkest Hour guitarist Mike Schleibaum on the band’s recent “Undoing Ruin” anniversary tour

Earlier this summer metal core greats Darkest Hour revisited their breakout album, Undoing Ruin, by playing it in full for audiences across the US of A. The show was nothing short of spectacular. The guitars were heavy, the vibe was huge and the audience was fully engaged. Check out some awesome live videos from the evening, courtesy of Yahoo! Screen.

Undoing Ruin has aged quite well in the last ten years and worked perfectly as a front-to-back live effort. After the last note of the album was played, the band forged on with a mini-set spanning most of their back catalogue. Check out the full set list here.

Guitarist Mike Schleibaum sat down with Dying Scene writer Jason Epstein before their New York City gig to discuss special anniversary tours, the band’s self-titled album, and their progression as songwriters.

You can check out the full interview below.



DS Exclusive: Get Dead premiere live music video for “Coma State”

In 2013 San Francisco punk act Get Dead went on a run of tour dates with Less Than Jake, Anti-Flag and Masked Intruder in the US and on this tour they recorded a live video for their track “Coma State”. The song hasn’t appeared on an album and the video never saw the light of today… until now! Check out the video below.

The tune is featured on a four way split 7-inch with The UprisingToyguitar, and Lost In Society called “Great Thieves Escape” and is available through True Trash and Flix Records on colored vinyl. The 7-inch can be ordered off the TrueTrash website.

Get Dead are currently in the studio with Fat Mike for their new full length which is due spring / summer 2016.



DS Interview: Richie Ramone on his legendary time in the Ramones and waving the Ramones flag as a solo artist

 

If there’s one surname that can inexorably be linked to the punk music scene more than any other, it’s undoubtedly “Ramone.” In the band’s two-plus decade career, only seven people can lay claim to having donned the legendary moniker (technically eight if you count Clem “Elvis Ramone” Burke, who only played a few notoriously disastrous shows with the band before being replaced). While the founding four (Joey, Johnny, Dee Dee and Tommy) have all shuffled off this mortal coil, CJ, Marky and Richie Ramone continue to fly the presidential seal-emblazoned flag high, honorably carrying the name bestowed upon them during their respective stints in what can be referred to as arguably the most influential band in American rock music.

While his four-plus year span as drummer for the Ramones began more than three decades ago, Richie Ramone is the newest of the three surviving members at trying his hand as a touring, recording, solo Ramone. His debut LP, Entitled, was released in late 2003 via DC-Jam Records, and he played dozens of shows across the globe this year. Now, with a sophomore album in the works and a full slate of tour dates in the works to kick off 2016, Richie Ramone and his band are getting ready to appear at the Hi Fi Rock Fest at the Queen Mary Events Park in Long Beach, California, next month.

Dying Scene had the privilege of chatting with the legendary drummer, billed as the “fastest, most powerful drummer who ever played with the Ramones,” on the morning after his 58th birthday. Though he may have relocated from the East Coast to Los Angeles years ago, Richie’s trademark guttural baritone voice is as deeply, quintessentially New York/New Jersey as ever. We covered a lot of ground, from Richie’s first time seeing the Ramones, to what it was like to write songs for a duo as legendary as Joey and Johnny, to how the music landscape has changed in the post-Ramones years, to what it’s been like to step out as a part-time frontman after so many years behind the kit.

Despite a fairly lengthy absence from the music landscape, and in spite of past difficulties with other band members (Johnny in particular) over writing and publishing credits, Richie Ramone remains as brazenly true to the the punk rock ethos that his namesake band helped create as ever.

Check out our full Q&A below.



13 Green Day Songs That Sound Like Songs By Other Artists

Green Day are one of the most divisive bands in modern punk rock. Many claim that the band aren’t punk at all (and those people aren’t necessarily wrong), while just as many give credit to the band as being their introduction to punk rock, even if they don’t really care much for the group anymore (and this second group isn’t necessarily wrong either). Regardless of which viewpoint that you side with, you may have noticed that there are a lot of Green Day songs that sound like songs by other bands. So many, in fact, that we’ve gathered thirteen songs by the Bay Area act, and the thirteen songs that they kind of sound like, below.

A disclaimer: It’s well-documented that “Warning” lifted its riff from The Kinks’ “Picture Book”, there was a decently popular mashup a decade ago that highlighted the similarities between “Boulevard of Broken Dreams” and Oasis’ “Wonderwall”, and every punk rocker and their fat drunk uncle knows that “American Idiot” sounds way too much like “Doublewhiskeycokenoice” by Dillinger Four. I’m letting you know right now that you’re not going to find these three songs below. They were left out on purpose, so don’t say that I forgot them.



DS Exclusive: “Fat Wrecked for 25 Years Tour” Q+A with Joey Cape and Jake Kiley

A couple weeks back, we brought you the first installment of a Q&A session with bands that’ll be part of this month’s “Fat Wrecked For 25 Years Tour” in celebration of the silver anniversary of now legendary Fat Wreck Chords. The first installment included the members of Swingin’ Utters, toyGuitar, Bad Cop/Bad Cop and The Flatliners. Check it out here if you missed it.

Today is official tour kickoff day, which is a perfect time to present to you Round #2, this time featuring Jake Kiley from Strung Out, and the one-and-only Joey Cape. Check it out below.

The “Fat Wrecked For 25 Years Tour gets under way tonight in Boston. The tour’s lineup features the likes of NOFXStrung OutLagwagon,Swingin’ UtterstoyGuitarThe FlatlinersBad Cop/Bad CopMasked Intruder and more depending on your location. The ragtag bunch of misfits that comprise your friendly, neighborhood Dying Scene editorial staff agree with the positive vibes about the “Fat Wrecked For 25 Years” tour, and will be out in full force at various different stops on the tour. Check out the full rundown of “Fat Wrecked For 25 Years” tour dates here!



10 Small Town Bands with Big Time Talent

Strike Out Kid playing a trailer show

Having lived a largely nomadic lifestyle during my time on earth, I’ve had the chance to live in a variety of different types of places. From major metros to rural backwoods and everything in between, I’ve inhabited them all at one time or another. From this experience, I have garnered a love/hate relationship with Small Town, America. While there’s something to be said for the safety and familiarity that comes with living in a smaller community, it’s also usually accompanied by a tremendous amount of boredom and a constant feeling that you need to escape the mundane. One thing that can’t be argued is that these small towns aren’t known for contributing a plethora of bands to the scene. An overwhelming majority of punk bands are from large metropolitan areas like Los Angeles, Boston, NYC or the outlying suburbs surrounding these hubs. So when a great small town band comes along it’s worthy of note. For this list, we’ve defined small town as city/town that has roughly 300,000 or fewer residents and is far enough away from major metros so as not to be affected by their “sphere of influence”. I even included a place where I used to live. See if you can figure out which! Check out our nod to just a few of these superb small town acts, sorted by hometown population, below!



DS Interview: Chris Farren (Fake Problems/ Antarctigo Vespucci) on new Fake Problems material, DIY recording, and being a punk celeb

Chris Farren is….well where to begin? The Fake Problems frontman has stepped out from behind the full band setting, such as many punk musicians have before him, and created quite a name for himself as a solo-artist by doing so. Farren’s latest EP “Where U Are” is a dreamy, synth-pop masterpiece that pulls from his more punk background. I had the chance to chat with him about a new Fake Problems record, DIY recording, and the hardships of being a punk rock celebrity at the Philadelphia stop of his tour alongside Dave Hause and Rocky Votolato. You can read the full interview below.



Aaron “White Owl” Collins (Skarhead, White Trash, Murphy’s Law) guest hosts Dying Scene Radio, No Redeeming Social Value, NYHC

This week on Dying Scene RadioBob Noxious is on hiatus, attending to his studio renovation, while Bobby Pickles welcomes help from his “business partner” Tone Lo-Ki and NYHC bassist extraordinaire Aaron “White Owl” Collins whose discography includes stints with SkarheadMurphy’s Law, and the early 90s funk-punk band White Trash (Elektra Records). Collins, a gritty, DMS punk rock “lifer” provides a sh!t-ton of interesting commentary. Wait until you hear his Rick Rubin story! Check out the newly released White Trash record titled “Suburban Purgatory”. BAND SPOTLIGHT: Pickles and Lo-Ki speak with Dean (aka D. Thrilla) of the NYHC schtick act No Redeeming Social Value. Episode 26’s recurring theme: Zappa!

Hear all the ridiculous blathering (uttered with a NY-twang) below.



DS Exclusive: “Fat Wrecked for 25 Years Tour” Q+A with Swingin’ Utters, The Flatliners, toyGuitar and Bad Cop / Bad Cop

Whether you’re a loyal, regular Dying Scene follower or you just check in periodically, it stands to reason that think the upcoming “Fat Wrecked For 25 Years” tour is kind of a big deal. Responses to the tour’s lineup, which includes the likes of NOFX, Strung Out, Lagwagon, Swingin’ Utters, toyGuitar, The Flatliners, Bad Cop/Bad Cop, Masked Intruder and more depending on your location, have ranged from “damn, that’s pretty solid” on one end of the spectrum to “oh my god, this should replace the Warped Tour” at the other end.

The ragtag bunch of misfits that comprise your friendly, neighborhood Dying Scene editorial staff agree with the positive vibes about the “Fat Wrecked For 25 Years” tour, and will be out in full force at various different stops on the tour. To get you warmed up, we caught up with a handful of bands that’ll be playing the duration of the tour for a little Q&A session. Check it out below, and check out the full rundown of “Fat Wrecked For 25 Years” tour dates here!



Interview: Introducing melodic punk act City Limits, stream “Homebodies” EP

New Brunswick, New Jersey is not an unfamiliar town to anyone in the pop punk scene. It has seen the manifestation of The Bouncing Souls, Gaslight Anthem, and The Ergs!, and has been home to the legendary Court Tavern (RIP). The suburbs may appear to be quiet, but they won’t give up spewing melodic anthems just yet.

Meet City Limits, a melodic punk act in the same vain as Dear Landlord, Off With Their Heads, and The Lawrence Arms. The quartet released their sophomore EP “Homebodies” through Death To False Hope Records today, July 28th.

You can give it a listen here.

We also caught up with vocalist/bassist Allon Levin, and guitarist Dave Lopez to discuss the difficulties of analog recording, the songwriting process, and their upcoming tour. You can read the full interview and check out their tour dates below.