Grungy garage punk out of Brooklyn, NY
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If you’re unfamiliar, Proper. are a three-piece formed in NYC roughly 5/6 years ago (as The Great Wight initially) but hailing really from a variety of locations across the country and bringing with them all of their collective experiences and musical influences and creating something that hasn’t really been done before. I remember hearing their last album, I Spent The Winter Writing Songs About Getting Better admittedly a little late and thinking “damn…I’ve never really heard anything like this before.” The new album, The Great American Novel, takes all of the things that were great about the last one and pushes the needles way past 10. It’s important music. It’s music about alienation and about not fitting in and about being a queer person of color in a land that, despite it being 2022, is at times becoming even less comfortable with people that check those boxes. It’s raw and it’s powerful and it’s somehow still hopeful. Oh, and if fucking rips. I feel lucky that I was able to catch up with the whole band (not just with Erik Garlington who spearheads the whole thing shredding on guitar and vocals but with the full band, new mom Natasha Johnson on bass and Elijah Watson on drums and whom you may also know from his “day job” as a journalist for Okay Player) for the (*both laugh*) podcast a couple months ago – you can check that our here or wherever you listen to your podcasts. In the meantime, fire up The Great American Novel and be ready to be blown away. we were able to catch up.
Just in time for today’s volatile political climate, Chicago’s Voice of Addiction has returned with a brand new thirteen track LP (their ninth studio release) which is due out August 5th. But don’t fret, comrades, you don’t have to wait to hear it because you’re no normal person! You’re a glorious, loyal, worthy reader of Dying Scene and with that honor comes some privileges. This is one of them. So, give it a few spins and tell all of your friends about it, then go preorder the album at Bandcamp. Also, the lads are hitting the road in support of the album, so if you’re in/near one of the cities they’re coming to (dates/stops below), go say ‘thank you’ to them in person for giving us such a wonderful gift!
Upcoming Tour Dates
7/22 – Milwaukee, WI @ Quarters
7/23 – Oshkosh, WI @ Reptile Palace
8/5 – Detroit, MI @ New Dodge Lounge
8/6 – Grand Rapids, MI @ Pyramid Scheme
8/18 – Youngstown OH @ Westside Bowl
8/19 – Rochester, NY @ Photo City Music Hall
8/20 – Holyoke, MA @ Apeland
8/21 – Boston, MA @ Midway Cafe
8/22 – Providence, RI @ Alchemy
8/23 – New York City, NY @ Heaven Can Wait
8/24 Brooklyn, NY @ Kingsland
8/25 – Philadelphia, PA @ The Fire
8/26 – Pittsburgh, PA @ 222 Ormsby
8/27 – Cincinnati, OH @ Mockbee
I have a confession to make. Although I am greatly ashamed, and I’m probably going to be shunned by all of the Dying Scene faithful, I must admit that this was my first time seeing Frank Turner. I know, I know, the guy tours nonstop and frequents Nashville and the surrounding cities. Not to mention that I have been knowingly committing punk rock sacrilege by not having attended at least once, but, excuses aside, I finally made it. And man did it live up to all the hype.
Pet Needs, traveling from across the pond to the US for the first time, was a phenomenal opener. The Bronx reminded me why they might very well be my favorite live band. And Frank Turner was, well… Frank Turner. The dude was a true professional and was as classy and entertaining as I had heard.
Like I said, Pet Needs was enjoying their first trip to the states, and as soon as they started their set, they made me a fan. They’ve got some catchy tunes, most notably ‘Tracey Emin’s Bed’ and ‘Punk Isn’t Dead, It’s Just Up for Sale’, and guitarist George Marriott can down-right shred. In a way, they reminded me of some of the early English punk acts that made their way over to the states: the Buzzcocks, The Clash, etc. After seeing them live, I could not have thought of a better opener for the king himself.
I’ve seen The Bronx a number of times and my love for them grows with every performance. These guys are about as professional as it gets and they throw one hell of a party. What made their set even more exciting for me was when I realized former Offspring and current Against Me drummer Adam ‘Atom’ Willard was behind the kit tearing things up, all with an ear-to-ear grin for the set’s entirety.
Seeing my favorite drummer absolutely kill it was just icing on the cake. Seeing the Bronx is always a treat, but this most recent show was long overdue.
There’s not a whole lot that I could write here that would be new to anybody reading this. This was Frank Turner‘s 26th show in the last 26 days (on the road to 50 shows in 50 days – editors note: you can see our coverage of the New Jersey show here and listen to our interview with Frank from just before tour was announced here) and show number 2653.
I haven’t been at this whole concert photography thing for too long, but I’m gonna go ahead and label Frank and the rest of The Sleeping Souls as the most photogenic group in punk. It was hard to get a bad picture of these guys, and that’s saying something for a guy who takes photos that are normally 90% complete shit. Thanks to these dudes, this was the most fun I’ve had watching a show in a long time
Down below is the full gallery from all three bands. Had a lot of fun with this one and it would be much appreciated if you took the time to check these out. Until next time, Cheers!
If you saw my last gallery on Frank Turner, The Bronx and Pet Needs, I was quoted as saying, “[The Bronx] may very well be my favorite live band”. Well I lied … kind of. I forgot about a group of ska-loving punk rockers from Gainesville that played a pivotal role in my musical upbringing. I’m not gonna say that the Less Than Jake dudes’ performance topped that of the LA guys in the Bronx, but I’m content having a two-way tie for first on the list of ‘Nathan’s Favorite Live Bands’.
This was a fun show. It’d been almost five years since my last LTJ show, that one being across town at the Mercy Lounge with the Red City Radio boys. This was my first encounter with Doll Skin and Cliff Diver (both of which I mentally labeled as ‘will see again’), and although I am very familiar with Bowling for Soup from my early days of investigating pop-punk, I had never caught a live show of theirs either. So other than reacquainting myself with Less Than Jake’s live set, this was an evening of firsts.
What stuck out most from Doll Skin‘s performance was the sheer chaos and havoc that lead singer Sydney Dolezal rendered during their set. The images here do little justice as an accurate portrayal of the set’s intensity. They are one of few opening bands that I’ve seen that achieve this level of crowd engagement and attentiveness, which speaks volumes about this band’s live show.
Cliff Diver was an excellent opener for the two headliners because their style was a mix of what drew fans of both headliners to the show. They had the early 2000s pop-punk sound that fans of BFS would love. On the other hand, at times they also had a more traditional ska-punk sound that those who came for LTJ could appreciate.
And one other thing … man, can Briana Wright sing!
There seemed a clear division among those attending that I somewhat alluded to earlier. You had those attending for Less Than Jake (the crowd I would lump myself in with), and those who came for Bowling for Soup, and there was not much overlap between the two groups. Between LTJ’s set and BFS’s, the crowd huddled up near the stage was an entire new set of faces.
Although BFS’s glory days may seem to be in the past, these dudes can still hold their own and there’s still a pretty large group of followers who all still have the same question: Are they bowling in order to earn soup, or on behalf of soup?
There’s not much I can write here other than if you haven’t caught the Less Than Jake guys live, you’re probably in the minority of readers of this site, and you need to see them immediately. I’ve seen bands where their stage antics are gimmicky and their humor distasteful, but what could possibly be gimmicky about a damn toilet paper cannon?
In all truthfulness, you could see the sincerity of the performance from each and every member on stage. They were all genuinely having the time of their life up there.
As always, your time and attention here are very much appreciated. Check out all these rad bands, and I’ll have more galleries up in the coming weeks. Until next time, cheers!
Early Riser is band from Brooklyn, NY founded in 2014 by Kiri Oliver (vocals/guitar) and Heidi Vanderlee (cello/vocals) and later joined by Nicole Nussbaum (bass/vocals) and Mikey Erg (drums/vocals).
MakeWar is one word. It’s a state of mind, not a statement. #PSA #PMA
Brooklyn-based punk rock.
If you’re unfamiliar, Proper. are a three-piece formed in NYC roughly 5/6 years ago (as The Great Wight initially) but hailing really from a variety of locations across the country and bringing with them all of their collective experiences and musical influences and creating something that hasn’t really been done before. I remember hearing their last album, I Spent The Winter Writing Songs About Getting Better admittedly a little late and thinking “damn…I’ve never really heard anything like this before.” The new album, The Great American Novel, takes all of the things that were great about the last one and pushes the needles way past 10. It’s important music. It’s music about alienation and about not fitting in and about being a queer person of color in a land that, despite it being 2022, is at times becoming even less comfortable with people that check those boxes. It’s raw and it’s powerful and it’s somehow still hopeful. Oh, and if fucking shreds. I feel lucky that we were able to catch up not just with Erik Garlington who spearheads the whole thing but with the full band (Natasha Johnson on bass and Elijah Watson on drums and whom you may also know from his “day job” as a journalist for Okay Player). (Words by: Jay Stone)
Brooklyn based skacore
Born from the DIY/all-ages scene in New York, THICK make music with the raw defiance of punk and addictive melodies of pop, punchy and catchy and wildly tongue-in-cheek. With their live show typically spawning a mosh pit described by Stereogum as “more like an aggressive hug,” the Brooklyn-based trio brings an unchecked intimacy while building a deep and unshakable solidarity with the audience.