Issue 3 // July 2017
Featuring: 6 JamStack 10
18 Coasts 24 Ghouls 28
Circle It Hot Mulligan
50 ACLU 52 Vesperteen 56
Founder, Editor-in-Chief: Samantha Toy
Veracious is an online, and print music magazine based in San Francisco, California. We have a worldwide team of photographers, writers, interviewers, that all Layout Editor: have a passion for the music industry, and Grace Dearing promoting upcoming musicians. We not only photograph, and interview the bands Playlist Editor & Designer: themselves, but we also cover behind the Tiffany Martinez scenes crew such as: managers, tour photographers, publicists, lighting directors, Photographers: and merchandise sellers. Itâ€™s our goal to showcase those who work hard behind the Autumn Cantrell Brittaney Penney stage to make the musicians shine. Callum Ludlow Cassidy Oâ€™Hara Charlie Delahunt Dan Landsburgh Say Hello // Talk To Us: Emily Freya Erik Sosa Jessica Piochon Kelsey Boeing www.veraciousmagazine.com Luxicon Photography Samantha Toy Senior Editor: Maria Reynon
Writers: Grace Dearing Marie Newby
https://issuu.com/veraciousmagazine Maria Reynon Samantha Toy
firstname.lastname@example.org Twitter / Snapchat: veraciousmag1
Reviewers & Interviewers: Gabriel Dufour Samantha Toy
Instagram / Facebook / YouTube: veraciousmagazine
Many Thanks: Alec Joseph // Rebecca Malzahn BFD Festival // Brandon Paski Circle It // Zach Swelbar Coasts // Ian Laughton Eloah Jones // Ryan Fulps Ghouls // Lee Jackson Hot Mulligan // Chris Hansen JamStack // Chris Prendergast Mason Ashley // Jessica Shein Surfer Blood // Amy Winslow Vesperteen // Colin Rigsby Jana, Anna, Sam
Cover photo: Coasts by Emily Freya
“As a guitarist in a Toronto band without a designated practice area in my home, I was frustrated with how annoying it was to set up the electric guitar. All the amps, pedals and cords were a pain to set up when I wanted to play and I thought to myself, why can’t I just have everything I want ON my guitar.” - Chris Prendergast of JamStack JamStack is the world's first attachable guitar amplifier to integrate seamlessly with a smart phone for incredible effects, shockingly good tone, and total portability. Electric guitars can be a pain to set up. All the required equipment like cables, pedals, power outlets and amplifiers take up space and limit where and when you can play. The JamStack solves that problem, letting guitarists and bassists play whenever they feel inspired. Attaching it to a smartphone also provides the ability to add custom sounds, play to backtracks, record and share. It can also connect to a microphone and even electric violin. Chris Prendergast founded JamStack out of a desire to add layered effects to his electric guitar sounds without expensive computer equipment. Using his background in electrical engineering, Chris built a custom guitar by drilling a hole for a speaker and a smartphone. To make it more accessible to all guitar lovers, he hacked together an attachable cardboard version that eventually led to the JamStack. “I created JamStack by building a custom guitar first, then drilling a bunch of holes and inserting a speaker and smart phone mount. I eventually realized I could use a portable speaker and make it modular using soft clips to attach the JamStack without damaging the guitar. Adding smart phone technology and all the great apps for custom sounds and backtracks gave me a superior guitar playing experience that no one else was doing.”
Words by: Samantha Toy
“We think this will revolutionize the music industry. Not just for practicing at home, but also for parties and road trips, and even for professionals. We have a lot of people wanting to use them in restaurants etc. to perform in a mobile setting, walking through crowds etc. Having a guitar player, play live to their backing tracks, as they walk around singing I think would be pretty awesome, as an example. Going forward, we have a lot of great ideas for hardware and software and we will be looking for new investment (including the upcoming Dragons’ Den TV appearance – which is similar to Shark Tank).” JamStack will be available in August of 2017 for orders through the website at: https://www.jamstack.io/
Evanescence Photography by: Callum Ludlow
Marianas Trench Photography by: Emily Freya
Surfer Blood - Interview Interview by: Gabriel Dufour I was able to
have a conversation with Surfer Blood’s lead singer/writer John Paul Pitts when they stopped by in Calgary this past June. We were able to discuss the bands creative process, its response to tragedy over the past year, and what the album and the band means to him. With pop and punk being integrated into the music, it seems that the surf style remains the core of the album. Why did you choose this style of music and why do you want to revamp the genre and make it relevant again? “Well I think that’s part of the thumbprint and DNA of the band that you can’t really change. If we started playing metal people would say “Oh that’s Surf Metal,” ya know? I think that sort of twangy reverbed guitar I just gravitate towards because I just deeply like it. I mean it’s good that we chose the name Surfer Blood because it all suddenly makes sense, because if we had another name people would be even more confused. There’s something about instrumental surf music that’s really cool and has a lot in common with what we are trying to do. There is always something very primal about it, like the drumming sounds like its by amateurs who don’t know recording or music theory, and the recordings are often very hissy and low fi, and I mean that sounds like a description for a Guided By Voices record I just described. There’s something very cool and pure and amateurish about the whole style that we like.”
Your new album “Snowdonia” is full of tracks that shift in tone from the beginning at the end, specifically “Six Flags in F or G”, “Snowdonia”. What were the reasons behind this structure, and what was the process like? For “Six Flags In F or G” it was as simple as I had two songs that weren’t quite doing it on their own, but when I glued them together it kind of all made sense. I’ve always kind of liked that anyway, we’ve always kind of done songs with multiple movements. Even some of our better known songs off of “Astro Coast” are like that. There’s definitely a hook but there’s no chorus to the song specifically, ya know? You get so trapped in this “A part, B part, A part” writing thing that people have been doing it for fifty, eighty years because it works beautifully. I don’t know, there’s something about creating a song and just letting it go where it needs to go, and letting it into the different places from where it started from. I’ve always felt that when we’ve done stuff like that we are kind of at our strongest. I was just letting myself be really open to that when starting to write these songs, and its cool that some of these songs are six seven minutes long and only eight songs on the record total. It’s way different from anything we’ve ever done before, maybe the next record will feature twenty two minute songs who knows.
Much of Snowdonia’s content is extremely serious and reflective of life’s harsher realities, and yet the songs still sound upbeat and even whimsical at times. Why is that, or better how does that happen? It’s probably because I’m more of an optimist than people might assume. We’ve had well documented ups and downs including tragedy, and the fact that we are still driving eight hours to perform in Calgary today shows that we believe this is something worth doing, and kind of sacred in a way. There is something very sacred about playing in a band and that relationship, all sharing the same sort of experiences. Everything aside I wouldn’t trade my twenties for anything, I mean I’m thirty now and I would be stuck in Florida working a job that I didn’t like writing songs and recording in my bedroom if it wasn’t for this. But since we are together I’m able to see so much of the world and meet so many amazing people, and be exposed to so much music. At the end of the day I’m just grateful for where I am today. There are songs that are sort of bittersweet, and I’ve always preferred those ones anyway, so that’s why mixed emotions is what we go for in our song writing.
You mentioned the bands past ups and downs, over the past year have you noticed a shift in the bands stage presence and performance persona? Me, I don’t think about this. It’s kind of like not noticing that your hair is getting long. For the band there’s definitely something different as we have acquired two new members, two new personalities, so that’s definitely going to make an influence on the band.
Positive? Oh definitely. I feel like we actually try now. We try to sing well and put on good shows now. We travel just the four of us and sell our own merch, drive ourselves, and that makes us feel like we’ve accomplished an honest days work. Generally everyone’s very positive and not dramatic, easy to get along with, and that environment helps keep me that same way.
So you recently released the music video for your tack “Taking Care of Eddy” and it is completely animated. What was that like, contacting the artists, who designed it, directed it, how did it all play out? Well actually it was animated by my friend Nico who I had gone to high school with. In the band we all know each other from high school too because we don’t come from a big town, and the arts scene there is a little incestuous. He actually used to sit next to me in art history class when I was a senior and he was a freshman. He was just this cute kid that I sort of took under my wing. He was four years younger than me, and I was just about to graduate but we’ve stayed in touch ever since. He went on to animate for adult swim and has a pretty crazy portfolio. I send him everything we do, and when I sent him this record he asked if he could do a music video for it because he was just getting into that form of animation. I know that everything he’s ever done has been impressive so I said absolutely do what every you want. Sure enough he did an amazing job, and I hope that a lot of people see it because its really impressive. Do you think we can expect more of his videos in the future? I would hope so if he’s willing! The thing about animating is that it’s incredibly time consuming and no easy task. We’ve done two and they both have taken months and months of painstaking work. I’m way open to it though if he’s down.
Do you personally have a favorite song off of “Snowdonia”, and is it the same song as your favorite to perform? Well actually my favorite one from the record is one that we don’t perform live. “Carrier Pigeon”, the last song on the record, is a little slow for live and very new ground for us because of the slowed tempo. I feel like the thing we hear most about the record is how raw it is. It’s emotional and very personal; it’s all laid out there. It’s not diffused at all which is something I’m very guilty of because at the end of the day you don’t want to hide or mask your intentions. It would almost be easier if I had a stage persona where I dressed as a clown or something because then any criticism is directed towards a character and not at you. When it’s you putting out your own lyrics as yourself it is hard to be that vulnerable, and I think the secret to this album was that I said “Screw it I’m out of songs, might as well get writing”. I told myself that I would write until I made a good one, and in the process I allowed myself to be vulnerable and be open and sincere by convincing myself that no one would ever hear it.
Photography by: Mockingbird Photo Who have you been listening to recently? Any recommendations? Well on the way here we were listening to a lot of Women, because we are all big Women fans and they are from here. The two full lengths that they put out were really important to us as a band so we listen to them a lot. I’ve been listening to a lot of Galaxie 500, nothing new there but still great. This band Winter, who we are touring with right now, are from Los Angeles and have been a name I’ve heard flying around for a while and now we are doing two dozen shows together, so that all came together. We’ve actually played with a lot of good bands recently, there’s this band called Prism Tats, also from LA, who I had never heard of but they turned out to be really awesome. We toured with a young lady named Pip Blom from Holland. We did a bunch of European dates with her, and her band is just a bunch of nineteen year olds but they are really good and legit. I was definitely not that cool when I was nineteen. I have a feeling we are going to hear about her over here really soon.
What does “Snowdonia” mean to you, and why did you choose it as the title of the album? I chose it as the title of the record because that’s when things really took off for me honestly. It wasn’t the first track I wrote, but it was the first I actually sat down and finished, demoed, and liked where it was going. Before that there had been so many false starts, not knowing where to go and I just felt sort of lost. It was a whole new experience of me writing a record on my own, along with new band members and stuff like that. It felt strange at first, but after that song I knew that everything was going to be ok and that the album would finally take shape. Once I saw the album artwork I knew that it was a done deal. What are your plans for the rest of the year, and after that? After this we are going to need a break. We’ve been out three weeks now and we’ve got three more to go, as well as that we’ve been touring hard all year. Whatever we are going to record next is still in its preliminary stages, I mean I’m juggling like fifteen demos at the moment and any one of them could be the new direction for the next album, who knows. I’m very proud of the fact that we never repeat ourselves in our writing, and that we always try new things for each record. This makes our records each stand on their own in a way, displaying the arch of the band that I’m really proud of. Honestly I don’t know what the future holds, probably more records and shows, but ya know what else is there? Finally when writing, what comes first? Melody or lyrics? Easy, always the melody. Create a great melody and then mold your lyrics around it.
Make sure to pick up Surfer Blood’s recent record, Snowdonia, on iTunes or stream it on Spotify because you won’t regret it. You can also read my review of it in Veracious’ last issue which is on their website at veraciousmagazine.com. surferblood.com for more information!
Alt-J Photography by: Dan Landsburgh
Dean Brody Photography by: Cassidy Oâ€™Hara
Mason Ashley What can you tell us about your EP, “Strangers”? “Strangers” is six of the most terrifyingly honest and personal songs I've ever written. It's a indie pop/singer-songwriter sound with very metaphorical and real lyrics. All the songs on the record are true stories from the past two years of my life. You filmed a music video for your single, Paper Planes. What was your favorite thing about filming it? My favorite part about filming was the team we had. We had an absolute blast filming. I got to explore old buildings and wear a float dress and eat chips in between scenes so basically every girl's dream, right? If you could tour with one person for a year, who would it be?
Interview by: Samantha Toy
The 1975. My absolute favorite band ever. I saw them in concert last year and it was the best concert I’ve ever seen.
Who is one person that influences you, and your music? A major influence for me is Bob Dylan. I discovered him when I was 13 and he changed my writing forever. What are your plans for this fall? This late summer/early fall is when “Strangers” will be released!! So my fall will be filled with more interviews, maybe some shows, and then probably getting ready for the next project.
Make sure to check out my website for any recent news, or updates! http://www.masonashley.com
Alec Joseph Dream Collaboration: Justin Timberlake Favorite moment(s) with Jacob Whitesides: Traveling and meeting our fans! Future plans for rest of the year: I will definitely be putting out some new music very soon—I don’t have an exact date yet. I want to see how far we can go with “Where Did Summer Go?” Same with touring—hopefully very soon! If you were to do a world tour, what is one city or country you must add right away without thinking? If I could do a world tour, I would want to perform in Argentina! I’ve never performed there, and I have been studying Spanish since I was in Kindergarten, so being able to perform there would cool! At just 18 years old, you have over 570K followers on Instagram with a strong, and supportive fanbase. How do you think you stand out from other teenage artists? I think something that makes me different is that I am a full-time college student. The support of my fans has been incredible, and I am so thankful for them. You released your single, “Where Did Summer Go” just a couple of weeks ago. How has the reaction been to it? Do you have any favorite lyrics from it? The reaction has been so awesome to see. That song is about a very real relationship I had a few Summers ago, and it makes me very happy that people are connecting to it in their own ways. My favorite line is “Perfect storm washed me away”.
Interview by: Samantha Toy
Photography by: Kat Hennessey 17
Photography by: Emily Freya
Coasts are an elec-
tro-indie rock band from Bristol, England that formed in 2011. While attending university in Bath, band members, Chris Caines (vocals), Liam Willford (guitar), James Gamage (bass), David Goulbourn (keyboards), and Ben Street (drums) became friends to form a band together. They began writing music, and rehearsing during the summer, which lead to their debut single called “Stay” in 2012. It received praise from Welsh BBC broadcaster Huw Stephens, and it eventually lead to their debut EP, “Paradise,” in early 2013. The band continued to tour around the UK and Europe until they performed at the Brighton’s
Words by: Marie Newby
Great Escape Music Festival. Coasts continued writing music and released their 2nd and 3rd singles, “Wallows” and “Oceans”. The band had the chance to perform at Radio 1 live session at Maida Vale, and they eventually began to play sold out shows across England. Soon after Oceans was on the iTunes market, Coasts began their journey to North America in 2015 where they made their first appearance in California. Later on in the year, they played Coachella in the spring, along with Reading and Leeds Festival that fall. After a successful few years of touring and releasing singles, Coasts finally released their first self-titled album. The record was released early in 2016 via High Time Records. Starting in September of 2017, Coasts will embark on another headline tour in the UK throughout the end of October. Make sure to stream or purchase their music, and see them in a city near you!
Recent Releases: Alvarez Kings - Somewhere Between For Fans Of: Don Broco, PVRIS, The Hunna Released: April 14, 2017 Hometown: London, England Website: http://www.alvarezkings.com
The Maine - Lovely, Little, Lonely For Fans Of: All Time Low, Boys Like Girls, Mayday Parade Released: April 7, 2017 Hometown: Phoenix, AZ Website: https://www.themaineband.com
R5 - New Addictions For Fans Of: Bea Miller, Cody Simpson, The Vamps Released: May 12, 2017 Hometown: Los Angeles, CA Website: https://www.r5rocks.com 22
Recent Releases: Coast Modern - Dive For Fans Of: Lewis Del Mar, Hunter Hunted, Smallpools Released: May 24, 2017 Hometown: Los Angeles, CA Website: http://coastmodernmusic.com
Before You Exit & Great Good Fine Ok Find Yourself For Fans Of: Hey Violet, One Direction, Shawn Mendes Released: May 26, 2017 Hometown: Orlando, FL
CHON - Homey For Fans Of: Animals As Leaders, Periphery, TesseracT Released: June 16, 2017 Hometown: San Diego, CA Website: http://www.chonofficial.com 23
Photography by: Jessica Piochon Originating from London, England, the five-piece alternative rock band GHOULS, have been on our radar for a few months now. The band has toured numerous times across England, played huge festivals such as 2000Trees, Jera On Air, The Secret Garden Party, and Hit The Deck. They signed with 1471 records, and released a 12 track record called RUN back in May. Benedict Goold (Guitar/Lead Vocals), Sam Mussell (Bass & Backing Vocals), Ben Maz (Saxophone), Russell Spencer (Trombone &
Backing Vocals), and Jay Swinstead (Drums) all come from a range of different musical backgrounds. They have never stripped down to one specific genre, and I believe that is why they stand out musically. Their music gives them the possibility to tour worldwide with a variety of bands because they can easily fit into any genre. “We aren’t bothered where we’re placed or how you categorize us as a band, only that you notice that were unique and offer something for those who stand out and feel they are different from the rest of the crowd,” stated frontman
Words by: Samantha Toy Benedict Goold. Individually, they never find themselves fitting into particular scenes or crowds, instead creating their own group of misfits. “We are a family that extends wider than the 5 band members of the band; from the people who come to our shows, listen to our songs, to the people who have driven us around, put us up, fed us, gave us a home for a few hours - we’re all family. GHOULS stand for the people who don’t fit in, and perhaps, the people
that just want to be themselves.” As GHOULS have been touring for quite some time, their name has been getting around in the music scene. They have performed at festivals all over the UK, and they will even get to perform at three festivals in Florida this fall. Frank Turner who is a music genius in England, continues to speak of his admiration for GHOULS. Everything that the band has achieved today has been through DIY means and testament to the bands sheer determination to make things
work. “If you want something or you want to do something, don’t wait for it to happen, go and make it happen, even if you make mistakes, “continues, Goold.” We have found family and friends in people all across the world all because we decided we just wanted to. We never waited for anyone to help us make those things happen, and yes we’ve made and learnt from mistakes but thats how you grow –its what makes life exciting. Go out and do it. Whatever it is. If you need to train for it, then what are you waiting for?
Enter the race and train. Take risks. Find the means, whatever it might take, and just go do. Life isn’t forever.” GHOULS will be out on another headline tour this fall all over England, so make sure to check them out! For more information, you can visit their Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/ ghoulsuk
Photography by: Brittaney Penney At 17 years old, Eloah Jones, who is a Texas native, has released her first single, “SOLDIER” last November. “The inspiration behind “Solider” is about a heartbreak, and to keep fighting. This past year I went through a lot of adversity and almost gave up, but I hung in there and never gave up and I’m in so much of a happier place. Writing ‘Soldier’ really helped me heal, and I hope it is helping other people.” Eloah stated in an interview. Just six years previously, Eloah began acting and
singing which eventually led the music industry to take notice of her voice, and passion. Her captivating voice has already reached people in the music industry, and has over 4,000 streams on Spotify, but it will eventually be played by millions of listeners across the globe. In the past, she commented of the spark of being in the entertainment business was from seeing Taylor Swift on TV, and wanting to be her onstage. Since then, Eloah has been working very hard from music, and making connections with people in the
Words by: Samantha Toy industry. Even though Eloah is just beginning her career, she will continute take the world by storm. Make sure to check out Eloah Jones on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. You can also stream or purchase her music on Spotify, SoundCloud, and iTunes. Her single, “SOLDIER” is out, and make sure to give it a “thumbs up” on YouTube! You can expect more single, and hopefully an album in the future!
Circle It Photography by: Kelsey Boeing Words by: Grace Dearing
songs. Indie. Alternative. Rock. All of these words have been used to describe the sound of the up and coming band, Circle It, and the jury is still out on which genre the band fits into. So much so, that even the members of Circle It --Zach Swelbar [vocals, guitar], Jarett Lewis [bass, vocals], Tucker Cowden [guitar], Tristen Carder [drums], and Devon Turner [guitar]-- have a hard time describing themselves in just one word. “We don’t really know a band that sounds like us, which is a good thing in Cincinnati,” Swelbar, explains. “I think us having so many different influences and backgrounds meshes into a weird and different sound.” Based in Hamilton, Ohio, Circle It’s influence ranges from pop-punk to religious music. Cowden’s musical career started
with the pop-punk band he created with Swelbar in their freshman year of high school, while Carder’s biggest childhood influence was being in his Church band when he was 13 years old. With such a wide range of musical backgrounds and initial musical encounters, the idea of Circle It wasn’t even brought up until later in the guys’ high school careers, nearly three and a half years ago. At this time, the band wasn’t sure what they were doing. They weren’t familiar with writing songs --Swelbar still jokes about Carder hating the first song Circle It ever wrote-and their sound was heavily influenced by the band, Walk the Moon. It was a long road of trial and error before the band found the “Circle It vibe” that is now almost undefinable. “I think when you’re starting out you have to take some sort of influence from
somebody, and if you’re a good enough musician you start to make your own music from it and begin to break apart from what you started doing at first,” Swelbar said. Since then, Circle It has put out an EP and two singles and are just weeks away from the release of their debut album. The album will consist of nine original songs and will still have that undeniable Circle it sound. “Adding [Devon] changed the sound [from the EP] a bit,” Cowden says, but Carder clarifies that, “it just sounds more like we really sound. We approached the EP very differently than how we play things live, and we didn’t do that this time.” Lewis adds, “we wanted to stay true to what people know us for from our performances.” Between songwriting and recording, Circle It has
still found the time to play shows all around the Cincinnati area. They’ve played in venues like The Underground, Madison Live, The 86 Club and other coffee shops. Each venue has given the band a chance to improve their stage presence, but it’s clear they prefer playing in smaller venues rather than larger ones. Cowden explains, “[In bigger venues] you never feel like you’re playing to a lot of people. But at [smaller venues] you could have 40 people there and feel like you’re playing to a lot of people, so the environment is better overall.” The variety in stage size, audience turnout, and overall venue vibes prepared Circle It for their acoustic set at Bunbury Music Festival in June, which was the biggest venue they’ve played. Rather than be intimidated, Lewis said, “When we have a big show like that, we kind of look at it like, ‘this is our job; this is what we love to do.”
You can see Circle It at their album release show on July 14th at Madison Live in Covington, Kentucky, where they will be accompanied by Daniel In Stereo and This Pine Box. Follow @circleittheband on Twitter and Instagram and like Circle It on Facebook for more details!
Behind The Name
Names have the power to define us; they have the power to shape our reputations into the legacies that we become known for. Names are a part of who we are. When asked how they came up with their name, almost every band feels pressured to have a deep and meaningful backstory behind it. Circle It, however, lacks an eccentric backstory. So, they tell two stories when asked how they came up with their name. Swelbar laughs as he explains, “I have a rug in my house that has circles on it and I was sitting after writing our first song and was like, ‘we need a name’ so I was inspired by my surroundings...my family’s a Steeler family so the circles on the rug was the Steelers logo.” This story is less than desireable as Lewis jokes that his family is a Bengal’s family ,not realizing the true story behind the band’s name until a year later. So, he came up with his own. “We were coming up with a band name,” he says, “and we had a list and somebody said, ‘just pick the one you like and circle it’ and we were all like, ‘that has a ring to it’ so that was added to the list and that’s the one we chose.” But now, the name has taken on a completely different meaning. This new meaning is one that the band, and Swelbar in particular, are very passionate about. “A big meaning now for Circle It, for us, and for me,” Swelbar says, “is we deal a lot with nature. I use ‘Summer trees’ a lot in lyrics and we bring it back to our album and every artwork that we’ve dealt with has had stuff to do with nature -- our new logo is mountains and a sun in a neon sign -- and we see it as we’re circling the sun. There’s always the circle of nature and everything going back to one point and we’re in it. So Circle It kind of represents that life moves in a circle and we’re going with it.”
MacDemarco - This Old Dog Review by: Gabriel Dufour
There are three different reactions that people
embrace after the name Mac Demarco is mentioned. A common, and rather disappointing, occurrence is that the name insights no resemblance at all. However, if the name does strike a chord with a person, it either spurs up an expression of passion for his wise man persona and addiction for his music, or it provokes a rant about how his overrated success has unjustly cast a shadow over talented artists unable to be discovered by larger audiences. Regardless of a peronal opinion on the man, one thing about Mac DeMarco cannot be denied; he can create a killer record. “This Old Dog” is Demarco’s latest full-length studio album, and while it is laid back, it doesn’t hold back. At it’s surface, the album is one of hypnotic melodies and peaceful progressions, but beneath the wonderful smoke and mirrors of the music, the content of the record is actually quite emotional. The thirteen-track album is packed with melancholy grievances that shed some light onto the consequences of our decisions. As a whole, the album deals with the regrets and confusion that correspond with growing older. It isn’t a coming of age album by any means, but is instead more of a mid-life revelations piece that confronts everyone’s worst fears. Missed opportunities and the roads not taken haunt these tracks along with the one who got away, the trials and tribulations of forgiveness, and realizing that often the person staring back at you through the mirror is the one you swore never to become. Rhythmically, the album matches the bar set by its predecessors, however the warmth emitted by “This Old Dog” is what makes it surpass them. Easily the most inviting album released by him to date, Mac ditches his sharp signature twang and instead embraces a variety of softer instruments used to sedate the audience. Synths, keyboards, and his signature guitar are still used, but the combination of them with grand pianos, acoustic strumming, harmonicas, and gentle harmonies allows the music to carry you off into another world of bliss. It entangles the slow, mellow style of music that Mac DeMarco is known for, although it also includes tracks in which he pushes his musical boundaries and embraces a bouncy, higher energy form of music. The cheerful “One Another” and “A Wolf Who Wears Sheeps Clothes” are perfect examples of him picking up the tempo and trying out brighter alternatives to match some of the more somber pieces. As previously mentioned, growth and revelations are constant themes that are stitched into every track on “This Old Dog.” It allows Mac to continuously confront the grief that regret brings and the emotional obstacles that prevent acceptance, and ultimately forgiveness. His relationships between his family members are the centerpieces of many songs on “This Old Dog,” specifically the one that he and his father share. In “My Old Man”, he describes how despite his best efforts, his deepest fear has come true by him becoming more like his father every day. By seeing his father when he looks in the mirror, he is forced to acknowledge both of their past actions and accept their similarities, regardless of his anger. This confrontation is then addressed later on the album for the final track “Watching Him Fade Away”, a song in which Mac has to put aside their troubled past and say goodbye to his dying father. Overall, “This Old Dog” is exceptionally remarkable because while it is both effortlessly charming and dreamlike, it still is incredibly heartbreaking. The album is somber, thought provoking, and at times even a little confronting. One thing still prevails due to the Mac DeMarco touch; it sure is a groovy record.
Bea Miller - Chapter Two: Red Review by: Grace Dearing
On June 2nd, Bea Miller released the
second EP of her three-part story called “Chapter Two: Red.” This EP transitions into the anger phase of coping with heartbreak; a dramatic contrast to “Chapter One: Blue.” On the “Chapter Two: Red” EP, Bea still gives her pop based sound a bit of an edge with the consistent use of heavy drums. However, her lyrics have turned from heartbroken, confused, and desolate to vengeful and indignant. The first song, “Like That,” is written directly at the person who has ever broken anyone’s heart. Bea confidently sings, “You don’t think I’m worth your time, don’t care about the person that I might be, offended that I walk the line,” addressing the cause of her anger directly. She then goes further to explain, “When you treat me like that...when you’re breaking my back...I only get stronger.” Throughout the song, Bea asks the antagonist, “So what if I’m not everything you wanted me to be? So what if I’m more than you can see?” These two lines highlight Bea’s new self-assurance and acceptance. In “Chapter One: Blue,” Bea’s lyrics were very insecure, and centered around being upset that someone turned out to be the complete opposite of who you thought they were. Now, in “Chapter Two: Red,” the lyrics focus on realizing you’re more than what someone else defines you as. In the next song, Bea’s heartbreaker has finally come back to beg for a second chance, but Bea says, “You say you’ve changed and you’re sorry but I don’t want to know.” Bea as the speaker has put her walls back up and won’t let herself be heartbroken again. She tells this person to give her something she can hold and trust and that won’t leave her like they did. She tells them to, “Save your love and buy me diamonds.” This one line chorus is a metaphor for everything that Bea has realized she’s worth. This person has made her feel worthless and has hurt her so many times that she is not even considering giving them another chance. Instead she is telling them, in a snarky tone, to give her something that is worthy of her affection. This is symbolized in the tangible object of diamonds. The last track on the EP, “Warmer,” carries more of a nostalgic tone than the rest. Bea reminisces on her past with someone and hints at why everything may have gone wrong through the lyrics, “late night, drivin', thinkin', where are we going? Don't doubt, don't ask, go fast, headed straight for the past. My house, my room, too soon, what are we doing? Why does this feel so good?” The people in the story Bea has been telling were in love and passionate at one point. But, they were also impulsive and may have been too rash in making decisions, causing Bea to pose the questions, “what are we doing?” and “why does this feel so good?” “Warmer” is much slower than the previous songs on the EP. Bea’s vocals are drawn out as she remembers the bliss she felt with this person at one point in her life. She confesses that she knew it was “never right” but still believed that they were getting “warmer to us, warmer to love, warmer to everything we can touch,” implying that this misplaced hope is the reason she stayed for so long. The song ends the second part of Bea’s 2017 project, “Chapter Two: Red.” In three months, the final three songs of the story will be released and listeners will finally be able to fit all the pieces together, following the phases of heartbreak in its entirety.
Greer - Satisfy Review by: Grace Dearing
On May 15, up and coming artist, Greer,
released his newest single, “Satisfy.” Originally from Boston, Massachusetts, Greer is a hip hop artist self-producing his own music on Soundcloud. “Satisfy” is meant to showcase Greer’s longing for one specific person as he says, “I’ve been waiting for you all day.”
While this new single is very professionally produced, Greer’s content lacks originality. The repetitive chorus is very catchy and lends itself to the marketable aspect of the song, but really tells us nothing of Greer’s own unique personality. The use of heavy beats with a poppy undertone sounds very familiar, as if we’ve heard this song before -- even though we haven’t. Still, though, “Satisfy” captures its listeners with the smooth, sultry tones we’ve grown accustomed to hearing on the radio. “Satisfy” entices listeners, urging them to dance along to the music, giving Greer the perfect opportunity to build his music platform. Even though he is still finding his own unique sound, it is evident Greer already has a strong following and it’s exciting to see where his career will take him!
https://www.instagram.com/NextLevelBadKid/ https://twitter.com/nxtlevelbadkid https://www.facebook.com/NextLevelBadKId/
No Vacation Photography by: Erik Sosa
Latest Music Videos: Artist: De’Wayne Jackson Song: Watchin (feat. André Paxton) Release Date: May 20, 2017 YouTube link: https://youtu.be/gjzBOSmNj6o Website: https://www.facebook. com/idewaynejackson/
Artist: Concealed in Clouds Song: Monument Release Date: May 14, 2017 YouTube link: https://youtu.be/yo2QYCV9C1Y Website: https://www.facebook. com/ConcealedinClouds
Artist: Charlie Manning Song: Light Years In Moments Release Date: May 3, 2017 YouTube link: https://youtu.be/4VzkRxQRq6k Website: http://charliemanningmusic.com
Latest Music Videos: Artist: Shorelines Song: New Heights Release Date: May 11, 2017 YouTube link: https://youtu.be/e3xo8ROhCig Website: https://shorelinesau.com
Artist: Tora Song: Another Case Release Date: May 24, 2017 YouTube link: https://youtu.be/5PZ3Xydr4Sg Website: http://takearest.co
Artist: Honors Song: Over Release Date: May 19, 2017 YouTube link: https://youtu.be/nOrqZVtvras Website: https://www.facebook.com/honorsmusic/
The View Photography by: Charlie Delahunt
Bastille Photography by: Luxicon Photography
Photographs by: Autumn Cantrell Words by: Maria Reynon
Hailing from Lansing,
Michigan, Hot Mulligan is an up and coming pop-punk band that is accumulating many listeners through their unique sounds and lyrics. If you enjoy Joyce Manor, Tigers Jaw, or The Front Bottoms, you will definitely enjoy Hot Mulligan. This five-piece band is part of No Sleep Records, an independent record label that has had The Wonder Years, Balance and Composure, and more under their belt. Through No Sleep Records, they have released their newest EP - “Opportunities” - which features songs like: “Dary” and “If You had Spun Out [...].” One key factor that differs them from other bands in this scene is their entanglement with “indie rock” that really prevails in “Opportunities.” They are pop-punk for those who do not like pop punk, and indie rock for those who do not like indie rock.
Listening to this band for the first time reminds me of when you are in a new relationship. It starts out with testing the waters, and trying not to oversaturate yourself with them. After that, you end up spending a lot of your free time discovering more and more about them. Shortly after, you want to make sure everyone knows about your new found relationship. This is how I felt when I kept listening to more and more of Hot Mulligan. Check out their Spotify page and listen to their newest EP, I promise it will not disappoint. Also, if you are in the East Coast area, make sure to catch these guys live by going on their bandcamp website and scrolling down to see the list of dates.
Six Bands You Need To Know: Band: The Dollar Bill Murray’s Genre: Alternative Rock Hometown: Brisbane, Australia Record Label: Independent Members: Felix Lindgren, Antii Kovacs, Rachit Moti, Paul Ballam-Cross
Band: Seasonal Genre: Pop Rock Hometown: Guildford, England Record Label: Independent Members: Max O’Neill, Matt Truseler, Alex Tickner, Alex Coombes
Band: Across The Atlantic Genre: Pop Punk Hometown: San Antonio, TX Record Label: SharpTone Members: Jay Martinez, Jason Lugo, Julio Bautista, Jayy Garza, Cody Cook
Six Bands You Need To Know: Band: BTS Genre: K-Pop Hometown: Seoul, South Korea Record Label: Def Jam Recordings Members: Rap Monster, Jin, Suga, J-Hope, Jimin, V, Jungkook
Band: Maren Morris Genre: Country Hometown: Arlington, TX Record Label: Columbia & Sony Music Nashville
Band: Charly Bliss Genre: Bubblegrunge Hometown: New York City, NY Record Label: Barsuk Records Members: Eva Hendricks, Sam Hendricks, Specncer Fox, Dan Shure
Music For Everyone A Compilation To Benefit The ACLU “I also wanted to give artists an opportunity to express something about what’s gone on in this country over the past year and what’s coming in the next ones. I needed that for myself and wanted to connect with other people who needed it. And I wanted to take that need for self-expression and channel it into something bigger than all of us.”
John Nolan of Taking Back Sunday curated this music compilation with help from Collective Confusion Records, Hopeless Records, and the non-profit Sub City to unite artists who have provided rare or unreleased music to voice their concern about the current fiery political enviornment. Consisting of musical voices from the different shades of the spectrum, the compilation celebrates its release on March 30, 2017. Available to pay what you want with a minimum of $10 at https://musicforeveryone.bandcamp. com, proceeds for the sale of Music For Everyone will benefit the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). “In the next four years, there is a lot of potential to see policies that will discriminate against people of color, Muslims, women, and the LGBT community. The ACLU has a long history of fighting discriminatory and unconstitutional policies and I wanted to do something to unite people in support of that fight.” stated by John Nolan
A message from the featuring artists on this record: “In the next four years, there is a lot of potential to see policies that will discriminate against people of color, Muslims, women and the LGBT community. The ACLU has a long history of fighting discriminatory and unconstitutional policies and I wanted to do something to unite people in support of that fight.”
“It’s times like these when it can be difficult to figure out what you as a single human being can do to help fight for what you believe is right. Thankfully, music allows us to use our voices collectively to work towards a common goal while releasing something positive into the world at the same time. Hopefully this inspires others to do the same.”
- John Nolan of Taking Back Sunday
- Jared Hart
“Anti-Flag believes that one of the missions of punk rock is to give a voice to those who have no voice and fight for those who are most vulnerable and can not fight for themselves. Time and again the ACLU have demonstrated the willingness to take on this mission – and win! No organization has done more to fight for the civil liberties guaranteed under the Constitution than the ACLU. They have the integrity, guts and resources to stand up to injustice when no one else can or will. The ACLU are punk as fuck! Period.” - Justin of Anti-Flag
“Indifference is the greatest civic sin.” - Cassino
“I’m a firm believer that dialogue is the most important tool we have for change. If you want to see real change in the world, it starts from using your work to create a real dialogue in your daily life. This song is simply an attempt at that.”
“Politically, things are kinda dark. Seems like the world could use a little light.” - Gift of Gab
- Secret Space
Vesperteen Photography by: Kelsey Boeing Words & Interview by: Grace Dearing
“Vesperteen was an idea for a comic book character that I had a while ago and it was just a loose idea of a teenager that went out at night and was like a hero because the word ‘vesperteen’ is a botanical term for a plant that blooms at night. So, I thought that was a cool concept...everything kind of comes alive when the sun goes down.” Colin Rigsby explains his inspiration behind stage name, Vesperteen. Colin has been creating music under the name ‘Vesperteen’ since 2015 and this concept of a superhero has continued to grow ever since, but Colin hasn’t been on this journey alone. Every good superhero needs help from everyday people, and Vesperteen is no exception. Colin has put an immense amount of faith in his fans and the people surrounding him to get to where he is today. The music videos for Drinking From an Empty Glass and Feathers So Hollow are just two examples of this. Both videos were filmed and edited with very little collaboration from Colin himself. “Someone else had an idea and I knew I could trust them,” he explains. Colin has placed so much trust in the people that he works with and believes so strongly in the quality of their work that Vesperteen has easily become the greatest superhero of all in the eyes of it’s fans. Because of this, it is so much easier for Colin to connect to the audience during one of his shows, through both songwriting and performance.
“You can tell that it’s not genuine if I’m pulling from something that’s not personal,” he says about songwriting, “I really try to hit on themes and concepts that pretty much anybody can relate to.” Vesperteen has been playing these emotional songs all over the world for a little more than a year. Shows in cities like London and Cologne, Germany are “acoustic, more chill, and not as loud” in comparison to shows in cities closer to home, like one of his most recent shows in Covington, Kentucky. This is where the sun goes down, the lights are dim, and Vesperteen really comes to life.
Despite this dramatic entrance, Colin admits that he never really gets nervous to go on stage. Instead, he focuses on putting on the best show he can possibly perform. “I’m not nervous, but more anxious to make sure that I’m in it, that I’m in the right headspace,” he explains. One of the words Colin used to describe these shows is “unison.” “Everyone loves to sing along, together,” he elaborates, quickly adding, “I would hope that everybody feels free.” Over the past 17 months, Vesperteen has transformed from an idea in Colin Rigsby’s head, to a tangible superhero, uniting people all across the world. Dedicated to creating a personal connection with the fans, Vesperteen becomes vulnerable onstage, sharing personal stories through song lyrics. This raw emotion emanating from the stage makes Vesperteen one of the most courageous superheroes of all.
How did you get your start in music?
How would you describe your music genre?
“I first started playing music around 10 or 11. My dad played the drums so I played the drums.”
“I always just say pop-rock...electro pop-rock, maybe? Retro electro pop-rock! Some sort of combination of those.”
How did you make your name known outside of the country?
How did you meet the rest of the band?
“The Internet, mostly.”
“They’re buddies from Columbus. I’ve known them for a few years through other bands.
Are you releasing new music soon?
“Yeah! [In June] I’m putting out one cover song and one new single and I’m gonna record some more in September. I don’t know if it will be an EP or a full length, but enough for some sort of release.”
Taking Back Sunday
Featuring: Coasts, Eloah Jones, GHOULS, Circle It, Vesperteen, Alt-J and more!