Monday, March 28, 2011

Beauty is soul deep

No talking. Just listen. More to Come.

A night to be remembered

This was my first trip to the Tom Lee Music Hall. Ive heard about its great sound and amazing stage. Having just bought my new Canon T2i camera i was excited to test it out.

 Compass Rose opened the night off. Classic Japanese rock style. Good riffs and solid singing. The drummer was playing an electric drum kit and everyone was using fairly small amps. It sounded good but lacked the punch that bigger amps and real drum kits give. The singer give a stronger performance and very personable towards the audience, smiling and waving, and giving lots of energy. The band behind her was less exciting. The lead guitarist was moving around a bit and enjoying himself, but the others were statues. They coverd a song by X Japan, a famous Japanese band. They warmed the crowd up for the main event...

EVE (Ever vast Exemption) took to the stage and without hesitation blasted into their set. The whole crowd moved up front to see the band they all had come to see and they were not disappointed. If you look up presence in the dictionary you just see a picture of EVE. They played hard and captured all ears in the hall. Moved around the stage drawing every eyeball to follow them. Marshall half stacks on either end of the stage pumping out heavy guitar sounds. With a set of songs that everyone knew and a few covers thrown in they blew the audience away. Three quarters through their set the singer took a moment to read a letter to the crowd expressing his love and gratitude to all of them for being loving fans for all the years. They finished off with a couple more songs and guitar solos. Then bid their loving fan a last fond farewell.

As some of the crowd left to go home, Xenocide started to set up. Being last is never a good position unless you know your audience wants to hear you. Xenocide played tight trash metal but surprisingly fell on deaf ears to the EVE crowd. That's not saying they didn't have their supporters though. A small but passionate group of metal heads stayed and moshed. One girl in particular headbanged so much i thought her head would fall off. Sick band, just got what the crowd was looking for that night.

Check out all the photos here:

Beer before liquor never sicker...

Now insert yourself into this picture. This is where you should be on Friday April 1st. Not going to say much. This is one of my favorite bands in Vancouver. Every show is an experience of headbanging, sweat, and booze. Their tunes are full of sick riffs, fat bass and bombastic drums. If i had a music school.. and i taught music.. their album would be on "Required Listening" list.

Who: Black Wizard, The Rockband Called Time, Hidden Towers:
Where: The Interurban Gallery/Scratch Records, 1 East Hastings Street
When: April 1st Doors at 9pm
How much will this cost from my beer fund... 10 bones

Black Wizard:
The Rockband Called Time: no myspace..
Hidden Towers:

I'll be posting pictures on the show on the site! So stay tuned!

A machine for creation

Tyrell Witherspoon is at it again. Just finished his first single Letting Go, he is now putting his dance moves in the spotlight as he shoots his first music video. Directed and shoot by Graeme Goodhall, this video promises great party scenes, epic dance moves, and a guest apparence by some very beautiful ladies! Hopefully to be released in a couple of weeks! Stay tuned.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

A man of few words gets straight to the point

S... N.... F.....U... legendary punk band. Canadian Punk. Vancouver Punk. If you don't know this band then you should not call yourself a Vancouverite. Even if your not into punk you still have to respect them. Formed in 1981 they spearheaded the punk scene. I chatted with Just Denis about the scene back then compared to now. After this conversation i felt wiser.. listen up!

James: When did you become part of the Vancouver music scene?
Denis: Around 1986/1987.

J: Why did you start playing bass?
D: Because i thought it would be easy. And i sucked as a drummer.

J: Spoken like a true bass player. Have you seen a huge change in the scene from when you started to now a days?
D: Ya. Justin Bieber hair and guyliner. White leather jackets on dudes... not cool. Bald heads and goatees on metal dudes was a no-no in the 80's. And punk was unnoticed at all thank you Green Day and The Offpsring. Changed everything.

J: Do you think its easier being a punk band now than it was back then?
D: Oh yes. It has become marketable thanks to Epitaph but it ruined the originality of it all. Bands all sound the same now. NOFX etc.. etc.. all sound the same. Not like back in the 70's or 80's. 3 chords and you knew who the band was. Now a days it's all a blur.

J: Very true. Do you still go out and see shows around town?
D: I do if i like the band or the guys in it. There is no scene if you don't support. That is the problem with the Vancouver scene. Metal is metal and punk is punk. Opposing scenes instead of banding together and making it better. They would rather be music snobs. I am a crossover kid. I love it all.

J: What bands around town do you go out and see?
D: Tough call. I just go out and see whats shakin. I don't look directly. I just explore. But Zimmers Hole, Bison BC and Life Against Death... those guys can actually play.

J: Good bands! I actually jammed next to Bison BC and in the same room as Life Against Death. Great bands. What about local punk?
D: There are no really good punk bands in van. Maybe Uptown Riot.

J: What do you think of most Vancouver bands?
D: Vancouver right now is a haven for clone bands. All jumping the band wagon on what ever is cool at the moment. So it is a little lacking. All clones of each other. But it is an age thing, all of us 40 and overs had different influences then.

J: Any words of wisdom for young Vancouver bands?
D: Embrace the old stuff. It is classic for a reason.  Misfits, Ramones, Angry Samoans, old Metallica, Slayer, list goes on and on. Even SNFU the 1st album is a classic. No collection is complete without it.

The triumpant return home! Catch their homecoming!

Now everyone knows that Thursday is the new Friday. So everyone come out to the media club for trashed Thursday to see 3 amazing bands! After a grueling 15 show tour in past two months Versus The Nothing returns home. This band has everything. A great blend of genres ranging from modern rock to even some shred riffs tossed in for good measure. Catchy choruses that just make you want to shout your lungs out while your dancing/moshing. A new album is also on the horizon for the band. Check out their single "Killer" on their website to get a taste of what lies ahead.

Now if that wasn't enough to entice you to come see these guys rock out, some familiar faces will be joining them on the bill. Fighting for Ithaca will be bringing their own brand of pop punk rock to the stage. Every time I've seen this band they always put on a great show. And to fill out the bill We Need Surgery will be there so get your groove on!

This promises to be a very memorable night. Who knows what tips and tricks Versus The Nothing has picked up from the tour. Be ready for anything!

Details on the show:
Where: The Media Club
When: March 31st     Doors are at 9pm.
How much will this cost from my beer fund... Only $8 !!!

Versus The Nothing:
Fighting For Ithaca
We Need Surgery
If for some reason you can't make the sure.. stay tuned. Ill be posting photos and will be doing a review of the show!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Takes "girl fronted band" to a whole new level

Take one look at this picture. You don't see a bunch of hairy sweaty guys right up front, you see a large group of beautiful well dressed ladies. Having a female singer is nothing new, even having a great female singer is nothing new. But having a singer who is so in touch with the music, so personal, that her soul flows out during every performance... well that's something you don't want to miss. Backed by a strong band this girl gets so into it that the whole audience is just captivated. Her voice has edge, but also be really sweet and innocent. They're album is full of rock with a twist. Not the usual formula but still quite memorable. Lots of high energy packed into each song. Good riffs, solid bass all the way through. The drumming is insane at points. Ranging from straight beats to some crazy fills. But i cant stress enough. See them live! I wish they had a myspace page that would show their dates.. or if they're website showed more information. They are very secretive.

See their website to get a free download of their whole album:

And search them on facebook!

Check out this youtube video of them playing at the Red Room:

I'll order loud guitars, huge drums and a side of... Mongoose?

They're are plenty of good ol'fashion straight up rock&roll bands around Vancouver. Though a number of them deserve to stay playing the same old bars on Wednesdays nights... but some just blow your ear drum right out. Loud edgy guitars and dynamic vocals are the two things that stick out the most in my mind. One of my favorite tunes from their myspace is "Rock The Boat". Crunchy riffs with a melodic but also rhythmically interesting vocal line. Solid solo, nice and simple but ending with a few showy riffs. Its definitely a song i would love to belt out the lyrics at the top of my lungs.

The band has released not 1, not 2, not 3, but 6 albums!! Each more dynamic but still maintain their unique blend of straight up rock. They've played everywhere in Vancouver that live music has allowed them. They have shared the stage with Steel Panther and Clutch. Very talented players, but most importantly in my mind... they put on a show! None of this standing around. Its one thing to be playing solid riffs, but another thing to play killer riffs while jump kick! So grab a few buddies and check them out around Vancouver! They went to Japan last year but be sure to check out the this website and I'll let you know when their next show is! Expect something this summer!
Check out a video of them:

Mongoose- Working Harder

MONGOOSE | Myspace Music Videos

Been around the block.. then left the block entirerly

Handmade fame. It what a band needs to do now in order to gain momentum. Hard? well just ask the band Kill Matilda. They've made their own album, music videos, promotion, tours and even after all that decided to relocate to further their musical empire. Just their shear unity is mindboggling. Laying everything down on the line for music, not many bands can put in that commitment. I chatted with bassist Mykel Exner across Canada to learn their steps for success. Pay close attention class... you may learn something.

James: So can you give me a brief history? How did the band form? How did all this come about?
Mykel: In 2005 Mar and Dusty got together in an all girl band. In 2008 after a lot of turmoil and member changes I joined up and settled things down. We started playing shows in Vancouver pretty regularly that year as well. 2009 saw us record our EP. It was a DIY (do it yourself) effort. I engineered it with some help. Mar's boyfriend mixed it and we released it ourselves on itunes and all that. We toured western Canada promoting the album. It was awesome but we DROVE and DROVE just to play 9 shows. It felt like we drove for f*ckin ever! After that tour i wanted to come east and i started trying to convince the band. But we also needed strong promo material. So we made the She's A Killer music video.

J: I saw that video! it rocked! Tell me about the making of that video.
M: It was a lot of fun. It was another DIY effort. I worked at a video production company in Vancouver for almost 2 years and had made some great contacts. So after about 2 months of preproduction we finally were ready to shoot.

J: Any interesting tales from the making of the video?
M: It was a 22 hour day. F*cking cold! We shoot on November 1st. We did it on a dirt bike trail in Chiliwack . During Mar's guitar solo this dirt bike rips right through and we kept the take of her looking over the guy like "WTF", total death stare, it looked hot. When i toss the "dead girl" on the ground i was like f*ck.. i don't want to killer her for real. We didn't have a mattress or anything for her to land on. So i had to make ti look like i didn't care about this dead b*tch... but still didnt want to hurt that poor girl. Luckily we had like 18 people out that day helping. It was nice having a professional camera and DOP it was very professional. The video got rotation on MuchLoud and on MuchMusic.

J: Ya i heard that! Congrats! What happened next?
M: In 2010 we opened up for Powerman 5000 then toured across Canada and decided to stay in Montreal. Since we've been out east we've played a S*HITTONE of shows.

J: Whats the difference between over there and over here music wise?
M: Well.. Vancouver is pretty hard. There are not a lot of venues and a lot of bands trying to get shows. Out east there are a lot of venues so it's easier to get shows in bigger cities. In Vnacouver you can only really play once a month, here you can play all the cities that make up central canada. So you can play as much as you can afford gas to get there, if you have a good rep.

J: Tell me about the crowds there. Gaining lots of fans?
M: Oh ya, we've been killing audiences and getting lots of repeat shows. Crowds want us back and are very vocal about it. They are nuts! Dusty whips them into a frenzy and when we do come back, they remember and bring out more people. It seems easier than Vancouver from my perspective. Vancouver has a lot of competing things to do, like hiking, biking and outdoor stuff. Where as out this way people love to drink and rock the f*ck out. Even the media seems easier for us out here. We've been a feature listening in the Montreal Mirror which is like the Georgia Straight. We've been featured by websites and blogs. Where as in Vancouver it seemed nearly impossible to get any reviews or interviews. Here we are on the college and underground radio stations doing interviews every week it seems. Plus with our strong facebook presence we're gaining fans like crazy all over the states. Its been a great move but also have been very hard. We are missing a lot of close friends and family.

J: Wow sounds like you have it made out there! Any final advice for Vancouver bands?
M: When you get on stage.. give it all you've got. Your live shows is your best and biggest product. Don't hold back. People work hard for their money and deserve to see a show... especially if they pay 10 dollars to get in.. and then more for a beer. Make it worth their time for them. Then they will remember you. Oh, and content content content online!

There you have it.. some good tips for any band in Vancouver! Work work work work work.

Check out a video of them playing a recent show in Montreal!

A view from the otherside of the mirror

So many bands.. so little time. One the otherside of the band is the person behind the mixing board, promoter and venue. A good show is only half the bands.. the rest is the people working behind the scene. I chatted with Gabsung Lim who has been in the local music scene for years. He has been on both sides of the equation being both the band and a promoter around Vancouver. Enter the rabbit hole...

James: How would you describe yourself in the local music scene?
Gab: Well, firstly I am a local musician playing in bands such as Codex Madrid and Bone Chalice. I have been active in the scene since 2006, started playing at the Cobalt then started booking shows as part of Demigod Entertainment. Also I am a big an and supporter of local bands in general. I also produce local bands. I'm mainly recording at Bully Studios in New Westminster.

J: What bands have you worked with so far?
G: Meliah, Carthage, Tortorex, Bustfire and lots more. You can check out my blog to see a full list.

J: Sounds like a lot of bands. What do you find most appealing about the metal scene in Vancouver?
G: Wendythirteen's passion. Without her drive and integrity there would literally be nothing. The Cobalt is gone, but we still have Wendy and that's why there is still something of a scene left and we all owe it to her for keeping it together.

J: I know you witnessed the downfall of the Cobalt first hand. Can you tell me what happened?
G: Well, there is the excellent film "No Fun City", which has been in screening at various theatres all over the world. It contains pretty much all you need to know about the underground music in Vancouver and what it was around the time of the Cobalt's demise. And also the rise of the Rickshaw, which is a theatre turned venue. The exact reason why the Cobalt shut down is not clear, there were a bunch of little things like anonymous noise complaints, and then one day Wendy was pretty much forced to shut down by the landlord.

J: That sounds brutal. Did you play the final show there?
G: There were a few "final shows". We played the metal one of course. It was the only time I've ever played completely wasted. However, the REAL finale was the Subhumans show. It was probably the biggest show I've seen there and so the Cobalt definitely ended was a righteous bang!

J: At least it had the proper send off. So tell me a bit about promoting around Vancouver. Is it challenging?
G: It depends on the style of music you play, and what kind of following that genre has in the city. Also how good the music is. Sometimes people spend a ton of time and money and the show is pretty much empty, other times just make a facebook event and it's packed... so ya, it just depends on a hundred different factors.

J: Very enlightening. Any memorable shows you've played or set up?
G: I've set up a couple shows around 3 years ago when i was still in high school. Those shows kind of blend together because they were both at the Carpenter's Hall in New Westminster. They both were total gongshows. A hall filled with random high schoolers and metal-heads together is a rare sighting and seeing them moshing was both awkward and beautiful. They were called "New West Metal Fest 1&2". I'll probably bring it back one of these days.

J: That sounds epic. Any final comments to our readers about the local music scene?
G: Instead of spending money on a shitty movie... go see a concert and buy a drink for your friend with the left over change.

Be sure to check out Gab's blog at

Check out his band Codex Madrid at

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

An interview with Aeris Kurtis Finch from Stoned Moses

I'm always on the hunt for new music. Good music. Something that gets my feet moving or my heart racing. Well i was having a beer at the Roxy watching a cheesy Superanova show. Watching band after band go up and play a few songs, trying their best to involve the crowd. There was a lot of people there, sitting in chairs, having a few beers. Yet, they didn't seem to be interested in the bands. It got me wondering.. what were they waiting for? Well when the last band got up and started setting up.. my question was answered. the whole crowd was there to see one band. A band from Mission, called Stoned Moses. They played a rocking set. A mixture of funk, reggae and rock. The whole crowd knew every word, every breakdown, and danced through their whole set. Only after the show did i realize that most of the crowd had come all the way from MISSION to see the band.... I hunted their lead singer, Aeris Kurtis Finch, down and tried to find out the details behind his amazing band.

James: So how did the band get together?
Aeris: I noticed Tyrone Barnes had some pictures of himself playing guitar on his facebook. I peer tutored him back in high school and knew he was a tight cat. I invited him to come jam at my good friend Josh Vonhardenburgs house. Josh had a makeshift studio and was willing to let me form a band there and record us for free. Me and Ty hit it off hard just jamming psychedelic tunes and formed a harsh musical connection. Tyrone luckily knew a bassist named Mitch Black. Mitch just came back from Montreal and joined our force. After that Brandon Wood a locally talented drummer joined us. Tyrone and Mitch knew two twin sax players (Quincy and Karson Welch) who had a huge knack for improve. We had a massively successful jam. We started out calling ourselves the "Harsh Mellows" but there was already too many bands named that. So Stoned Moses was born... Brandon had too many personal things going for him. Our band needed steadfast dedication and more connection from our drummer. Isaac helms returned from tree planting and the day he stepped foot in Mission he became our new drummer. Our djembe playing Jerrett Ross was my best friend since birth so he naturally joined the forces once we became a solid unit. Through connections with the Vancouver scene we collaborate a lot with local MC's Deedz The Droid and P Shiggz.

J: So what does the name mean? Is it anti religious?
A: Dude, I'm just straight up going to copy and paste from the definition from the Urban Dictionary..

Verb: The action in which a group of pedestrians, waiting at the crosswalk is lead by a single vigilante pedestrian across the intersection during a "do not cross" period.

A qualified moses must be transpired before the cross walk indicator turns green when the mosecian is at halfway point between the sidewalks, or middle of the intersection.

Egs: 1) That rebel just pulled a moses on us, and now we're going to get run over
       2) Dude, I'm going to pull a moses and stop traffic

J: And a stoned moses makes it soo much better.
A: Definitely.

J: So how do you guys write songs?
A: We are all over the map on that aspect. A lot of the time it starts with a riff Tyrone comes up with. Sometimes he also comes up with a vocal melody as well and we just go from there with that feeling. I start singing some lyrics that form in my head to match the feeling. Mitch is a harsh prodigy on the bass so a killer line is never far off. once we capture a feeling and jam it over a couple times then we start working on structuring it, Chorus's, solo's and bridges. Then we jam it over and mold it until its something we can work with. Lately I've been listening to the boys jam and have been writing lyrical content before i sing. So our 2nd album is definitely going to be a lot deeper with the structuring of the lyrics.

J: Sounds like quite the process. Tell me about the new album. How many songs? What kind of vibe?
A: We have demo tracks that are a shell of what our album is going to be at this moment. We are heading into Claymore Studios in Abbotsford to record 3 professional songs for the Vancouver Seeds. Then we are going to start hacking away at our full body of work. Album is going to be called Mellow Rebellion. We have about 11 songs and a couple interludes so far. We are confident its going to be something that you can pop into your CD player and listen top to bottom. The songs on it encompass everything we are as a band up until now. We are a psychedelic, reggae funk band and the album is going to be very versatile. We don't fit into just 1 niche, we try to avoid branding, so our tracks on this album are going to reflect the full electric nature of our band.

J: Stoked!! Should be very epic. When can i crank this in my car stereo?
A: If we can get our finances together I'm shooting for August!

J: You guys going to release it on Vinyl? apparently its all the rage right now.
A: Haven't even though about that yet.. hell ya though!! Hell ya!!

J: Do you have any upcoming shows?
A: Ya! We got April 15th at the Railway Club repping Brave New Waves massive double CD release. Ivy League Brawlers and the Get Down are also on the bill. We're helping headline an independent art festival in Victoria called "Live Alive-Explore The Obscure" It's a day/night art festival at Bastion Square with artists, poets, burlesque groups and more. Finally we have May 24th at the Roxy and June 3rd at Joe's Apartment with Satori Tide and perhaps another TBA.

J: Do you think its hard being a band from Mission?
A: With the Internet, social networking, and about 3 of our unit based outa Van City... not really. Mission has given us HUGE support and a really stable group of people who dig our tunes. We plan on trekking to Vancouver so we can experience the city vibe soon enough. Just gota kind the perfect place to live and jam.

J: Well all the best of luck to you guys. Any last words for our readers?
A: We are a live band first and foremost. WE are all about connecting to the audience. So come to one of our shows and dance on stage with us and get crazy! We consider the audience to be members of our band when we play shows, so lets see what you got to bring.

Be sure to check them out on myspace:

and search them on facebook! If you like dancing... check them out!

"a cluster f*ck to say the least.."

What does a stand up bass, an accordion and a trumpet have in common? Well you'd find them all being played by The Jen Huangs. I hung out with Robert Mattson and learned some interesting tales about the band. There unique sound caught my attention when i saw them rock the stage at Malones. Listen in to our conversation..

James: So how does a group so diverse like yours get together?
Robert: I met Matt (singer/bassist) at the Cobalt about 2 years ago. We had a lot of friends in common but never met. We talked about jamming and about two weeks later i phoned him up and asked him if he wanted to start a band.

J: so just like that he said yes?
R: Well we jammed once just the two of us and it went really well. Then we brought Patrick (accordion/Trumpet/Guitar) into the fold and lastly our drummer Ed joined.

J: Do you find having a trumpet player/accordion player really separates you from lots of bands in Vancouver?
R: A bit, but we're definitely not the only band with a trumpet or accordion. People usually seem really intrigued when they see the accordion though. And the fact that our bassist plays a stand up bass... people usually see that while we are setting up and decided to stick around to hear us.

J: That is definitely a nice visual aspect of your band. When i first saw you guys play that's what i noticed first. Any problems having a stand up bassist that also sings?
R: Not really. Matt's pretty talented and is a natural at both. He says he has problems with straight mic stands sometimes but besides that i wouldn't say he has anymore difficulty than if he played electric bass or guitar.

J: What has been your favorite moment with the band so far?
R: Well this one time we were playing this show at the Princeton, the other bands we were playing with had some members who were underage. The bar staff said "its ok for them to stay, but once they finish playing they need to go". So someone came up with the idea for EVERY member of EVERY band to be on stage during EVERYONE's set. Every band had shakers and small percussion instruments so everyone on stage was doing something. It was a cluster f*ck to say the least, but so much fun.

J: That sounds amazing! I wish i had seen that. Any shows coming up?
R: Ya! We have two big shows in early April. Ones an all ages show in Maple Ridge on April 1st with The Wrecktals, The Adherents and GSTS. Cover is $7.

J: And the second?
R: The second is at Pat's Pub with The Wrecktals again and Real Problems. As well there will be performances by Misty Graves Gorleque Spectacular. Its hard to explain but it's basically a horror themed burlesque show. We've worked with them before and it was insane! Cover is $10.

J: I'll definitely try and catch that one. I hear you are also working on an EP right now, details?
R: We are trying to have it done by July or August for sure. Everyone should watch out for this EP. We are recording it at the Arts Institue Of Vancouver with Erik Pontifex. He's a great guy and has been doing a lot for us.

Be sure to keep an ear open for their EP and catch those shows if your in the area. Check them out on facebook or myspace.



Folk Metal at its finest

Folk... Metal... What comes to mind is beer. Lots of beer. In old school mugs. This music definitely makes you want to grab your buddy and wave your beer around, and then head bang and mosh until you spill your beer everywhere. Scythia is in the studio recording a new full album and I cornered Scott Thompson, the keyboardist of the band, and beat him until he told me the details about the new sounds that will be hitting your ear drums soon.

James: So how long have you guys been together?
Scott: The band started in late 2008, but i joined them in august 2010.

J: How did it feel joining a band that already has been together so long? Did they have lots of songs written already?
S: They already had almost 2 full albums written. I was able to jump in on this next album. I did some co writing for a few tracks but i hope to be more involved with any future songs from the beginning of production.

J: Can you describe the sound of the band?
S: The band sounds like 6 drunk nerds dressed up as medieval idiots playing with elegant passion to a herd of regular townsfolk.

J: Interesting description. Any new direction for the new album?
S: Pretty much the same except you will hear the sound of a real professional oboist instead of solo violin on most tracks. Although we plan on hiring as many background string players as possible to pull off that real folk sound

J: Sounds great! Bet it will sound huge. How long until you think the album will come out?
S: We plan to release it in late July. Just before we go for our BC/AB tour.

J: Good plan. What details can you give me for the tour?
S: Well, we plan on travelling through the Okanagan, the Kooteneys and up to Edmonton. Then hit Calgary and Prince George. But our main highlight of the tour so far is the Metal Mountain Festival close to Hinton.

J: that just sounds exhausting. Bet it will be a blast though. Any last comments?
S: Join our Facebook!

To see the tales from ye studio check out:

Monday, March 21, 2011

An Interview of Farewell with EVE

Be a part of history. This band has been together for years and has gained fans all around the world. They keep up an amazing tradition of Japanese inspired bands by putting on killer shows. Wild headbanging and amazing antics do nothing to draw away from their tight playing. But alas they are moving on to other things. I caught up with Jay Liu, one of the original guitarists, to talk about their final show and what tricks to expect.

James: So how long have you guys been playing together? Member changes?
Jay: Eve started around 2009 so its been 2 eventful years. Sid, Saya and Riku have always been in the band. I quit last January.

James: Why did you leave? creative differences?
Jay: No, Just was too busy. We put a lot of time into the band and i knew i was going to busy. I didn't want to slow the band down.

James: Did you play on the album?
Jay: Yes, i played on the 6 songs on our MySpace. They have new songs after I quit, but they haven't recorded them yet.

James: Where did you record them?
Jay: At Hive Studios in Burnaby, BC.

James: What kind of genre would you say that EVE is?
Jay: hmm i guess just metal

James: What sounds do you think influence EVE?
Jay: umm everyone of us listen to different kinds of music.. but for the most part its Dir En Grey and Slipknot. Half east, half west i guess.

James: What was one of your favorite moments in the band?
Jay: hmm.. when we are all headbanging together. And when we come up with something really cool for our shows on new song ideas. Makes me really excited.

James: Even though you left the band will you be at their final show?
Jay: I'll be playing, and so will the original bassist. So it's really the original members for the last show

James: Can you tell me a bit about the show?
Jay: Its on March 27th at 6pm with Xenocide and Compass Rose. Cover is 12 dollars.

James: Any last comments?
Jay: Even though this is the last show for Eve.. each of us is going to focus on something important and different in our life. Who knows.. we might pick up our guitars and make better.. more powerful music with each members experience through life. i kinda look forward too it.

So definitely check out their last show if you have never heard the band before. It will not be something you want to miss.

Check out their myspace at

EPOS -A Brief History with Andrew Bailey

Very few bands have been around for more than 15 years. Most don't have the commitment, the stamina, and the creativity to keep things fresh. EPOS is a different kind of beast. I chatted with Andrew Bailey, rhythm guitarist, about the history behind the band. Prepare to be amazed by tales of wonder.

James: So tell me the origin of the name
Andrew: Well, we just finished recording our first full album back in 2000 and we still didn't have a name. We'd been going by some other names that either didn't fit or were being used by other acts. So Stew went back to Royal Roads University. He calls me up one night, all excited, and says "dude! I found this awesome word on the side of a beer box!" Big Rock brewery had a different box design than they do now and there were words printed all along the sides of the box in a faded out cursive font.. one of them was "EPOS"

James: What does it mean?
Andrew: It's Greek origin meaning "epic song, poem or tale" or "collection of epic songs or poetry passed down by word of mouth"

James: Very fitting. How did the band form?
Andrew: High school talent show. The original lineup went by the name The Pinheads in honor of Michael J Fox's band of the same name at the beginning of Back To The Future. *laughs. From the original lineup only Stew and I remain when it comes to our normal live lineup but Jon (original lead guitarist) is involved in recording. He lives and works in Hong Kong so we don't get to see him much.

James: Understandable
Andrew: Totally

James: What's your favorite moment with the band so far?
Andrew: Hmm I'll have to think about that one

James: Any shows come to mind?
Andrew: We played this show at Studebakers in Burnaby about 8 or 9 years ago that was wall to wall packed with BCIT kids. 300 people or so crammed in there made it a pretty crazy night.

James: Any memorable bands you've played with over the years?
Andrew: Sun Like Star were a really good band. Jon from that band and a couple other guys from that band as well (i think) are in Art Of Dying.

James: Wow! Small world eh? Any other memorable moments?
Andrew: Well we have a song called Round & Round, its a very happy go lucky swingy kind of thing and everyone loves it. Back before Anton came along it was me on guitar and vox, Sean on bass, Stew on keys and his brother Chris on drums. For Round & Round i give me guitar to Sean and go get my sax which is hidden behind the backline. At this one show the crowd was going nuts when i went to go get my sax. Just before the verse is supposed to start my guitar strap unhooks and my guitar is no longer attached to Sean.. it was on the ground. So we both bent down instinctively to pick it up and i end up missing my vocal cue. The crowd sang the first line for me... it was pretty cool.

James: That's awesome! What a great feeling that must have been. Any shows coming up? Final comments?
Andrew: I'd like to say thanks to everyone that came out to any of our shows or anyone show around town. Support is really needed and greatly appreciated. The Vancouver music scene can be really awesome because there are so many talented people.

James: Very true.
Andrew: As for shows? Be sure to check us out at the Princeton Pub on April 1st with The Executives, and Sinister Black. Only 5 dollars. And we're rocking Republic for Fox Loud Wednesdays on May 4th. Stay tuned for our new album coming soon!

So there you go, a quick glimpse into one of Vancouver's most experienced bands. Check them out!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Interview with Graham McGee From Lungflower

I manage to sit down with lead guitarist Graham McGee from the stoner rock band Lungflower. The band just recently released their full record entitled Under A Dying Sun. Graham describes the madness going on with the making of the record and a brief history of the band.

James: How long have you guys been playing together?
Graham: Just about 2 years now. We started in a basement in East Vancouver.

J: So tell me about your new album?
G: It's called Under A Dying Sun, eight tracks ranging from shorter hard rock songs to longer more drawn out stoner doom riffs.

J: Where was it recorded?
G: It was recorded at Blue Wave Studios with Ken Burke, great guy.

J: So were you guys going for a really doomy dark sound? What bands influenced the record?
G: Not too doomy, more of a mix between Black Sabbath, Saint Vitus, and Alice In Chains. More of a wall of sound.

J: What was your strategy in recording this album?
G: We did drums and bass first to get a solid bed down. Our drummer played an over sized Ludwig vista light kit so it was tricky getting it mic'd the way we wanted it to sound.

J: Then guitar? How did you get those tones?
G: Ya, we tracked cranked our amps up to 10 and 11. My Slo got some really thick tones then i did all the solos and overdubs. 

J: Tell me the story about the vocals?
G: Jamie did the vocals last which was kind of a daunting task because he had given his notice of quitting the band right before we started recording the album. Great way to kick it off eh?

J: Brutal, do you think that affected his performance?
G: We really had to push him to get the balls that was needed. You could tell he just wasn't motivated anymore, he was really focused on school. But hey, he's a great guy and still paid his share of the cost. I'll drink with him anytime.

J: I guess looking for a new singer is important before trying to book new shows eh?
G: Ya, no shows right now. Working on trying to find a new singer. We have some prospects and we have been scouting local bands for new talent.

J: Sounds great man! All the best of luck to you! Any last comments for the readers?
G: Just rock on and play it LOUD

This Club (Our Hotel Room) -Jeff Dolton (ft. Marc Nelson)

Very few people get to hear their voice coming out of the raido. Winnder of the 2010 Beat Music Awards Jeffery Dolton knows this feeling .Teaming up with gold record producer Adam H from RockSTAR Music Corp, Jeffrey recorded his debut single at the Vault Studios in Vancouver, BC. This Club (Our Hotel Room) is a club banger. Jeffrey's voice flows over a thick beat making it perfect for the sub in your car or your home system. If you're hosting a party this song is sure to get the ladies hips swayin and the drinks a'flowing. Marc Nelson (Men II Boys, AZ Yet) backs Jeffrey with his piercing wails and harmonies. Don't be afraid to crank it up to 11 when this track hits its chorus.

Below is a video  from one of Jee's friends when they first heard it on the radio:

Freedom In Fear -R.I.P

Sometimes you catch the end of something epic. Freedom in Fear was epic. A local hardcore band that stole my heart. From the tight yet melodic riffs to the gut wrenching yells, my ears was instanly drawn to the stage when I heard them play at the Princeton Pub. If you've ever been there you know its not the best place for a band let alone a metal band to play. Despite the poor P.A and small stage, they still managed to get the crowd headbanging and moshing. The music is full of fast and furious guitar lines, well placed sweeping, precision drums and screaming that could tear your head off. I'm sad that I will no longer be able to see the band reach their full potential but hope all the members carry on to other projects.

Hear them roar at:

See their final show at Bullys Rehersal Studio in New West with Fall in Archaea. Doors at 8pm.

How To Fight -Erica Marrello

I've recently had the pleasure to work with a brand new artist, Erica Marrello. She has been singing for years, but her first venture into the studio shows her voice is a force to be reckoned with. Her mix of Portugese and Italian gives her voice a unique tone. How To Fight  talks about a young woman's night in a club and how she doesnt need anyone to rule the floor. When working on this song we envisioned a music video. Our heroine walks into the nightclub, instantly commanding the attention of the DJ and bartender, wades through the hordes of men, to end up dance fighting with one guy trying to take her home. I've really enjoyed her voice and professionalism. I believe if Erica keeps writing and recording she will go far.

I have a copy of the song on my soundcloud:
How to Fight by HammerRecords

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Letting Go -Tyrell Witherspoon

Dancing always involves great music. This time Tyrell Witherspoon isn't the one dancing he's the one singing. As a professional dancer on the hit TV show Hellcats, Tyrell rocks the mic with his first single Letting Go recorded at the Vault Studios in Vancouver, BC. This single reminds me of the great  pop music of the 90's. From the classic synth leads to the pumping beats, Letting Go is a great tune if you're heading to work, on the treadmill or just enjoying your day. Tyrell's voice plays very well with the track, giving huge choruses, tight verses and always leaving room to bust a move.  The music video is currently in production and will be released in the near future. Expect lots of skilled dance moves from Tyrell and his team, especially during the breakdown. Be sure to check this single out on iTunes! Also watch out for Witherspoon dancing on the season finale of Hellcats on CW on Wednesday.

Here is a sample:
Letting Go Teaser by tyrellwitherspoon

And to buy off iTunes: