Sunday, September 25, 2011

Awaken the metal thunder.

This weeks band is a progressive metal band called Awaken. I wish this show was better attended. Why is it people will spend 100+ for tickets through ticket master? When they can see great bands close to home for a few dollars? But for those who spent a couple of bucks tonight were treated to a great show. These are five very talented musicians.
I was approached by bass player Freddy Villano before the show. This was nice to see and more bands should be networking a room like this. We spoke about the scene and his band briefly. Turns out the members are spread throughout the New York area. Which make rehearsing not such an easy task. Also singer Glenn DaGrossa (from Lazarus fame) resides in CT.
During the show Glenn joked with the crowd. Stating he had to swim to get to the show. The guitar duo of Joe Todaro and Scott Bennet were amazing to watch. I was shocked that Scott had never practiced with the band before and it was his first time on stage with them. And rounding out the band was drummer Nick D'alessando. I've seen Nick play in various bands in the past and he is one hell of a drummer.
I would like to have seen Awaken with a merchandise table setup during the show. I think a band should have an area in the club to promote themselves. And clubs should give the space for a band to set up a merchandise table. It should be as important as the performance itself.
Awaken has no official .com at the moment. But they are taking advantage of sites like Myspace, Facebook and my favorite site ReverbNation.
To all you bands out there. Take my advice and sign up for a ReverbNation account. There are many tools for you to further your career.
On a final note. With the experience, Talent and accolades this band has combined. They should have no problem climbing the metal mountain. I wish them great success.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Gotham Rocks LuLus

I decided to stray from reviewing one band this week. Why you ask? Hopefully I can answer that question and answer a few that may pop up. First let me start from the beginning. I was sent an invitation to a show hosted by Gotham Rocks and Terror Bomb Records being held at LuLus Village Pub in Port Jefferson. And the master of ceremonies was radio personality Radio J. All three entities have a common goal. And that goal is to support local original music. Please visit their web sites and see what you can do to support the scene.
Now its on with show. I unfortunately missed The Paraphernalia the first band of the evening. I did actually see them through the window as I drove around looking for a parking spot. A good sign that this show was being well attended.
So after driving around the block a couple of times and finding a place to park. I was in time for the second band Con the Villain. They brought mustachophy rock to the masses. I think everyone had a 5 o' clock shadow by the end of their set.
Ghosts of Eden came out from New Jersey. This band was a highlight of the night for me. Its special to watch an out of town band win over a local crowd.
Up next was The Souvenir. They entertained the crowd with their emotionally driven set. They had a Deftones vibe but a sound all there own.
As Craving Strange took the stage it was obvious they were a crowd favorite. They were armed with arsenal of catchy songs. I was so happy to be dodging a dancing crowd instead of a mosh pit.
Revel 9 was up next. A funny moment came as singer/guitarist DJ Pearlman joked he was jealous how easily Craving Strange could write catchy songs. Just a personal heads up to Dj. I've been humming San Jose all day long.
The final act of the night was Axis Unknown. Better know as Dan Acosta. Nothing can keep this man down. He assembled a last minute band to keep his commitment for this show. And did I mention he almost cut the tip of his thumb off days before.
I'd like to comment how refreshing it was to see the comradery the bands shared with each other. Its nights like this that show how strong this scene can be. We must go out and support local bands and venues to keep the scene alive and well.
A special thank you to LuLus for having a club thats nurturing this scene. And to Godfrey Palaia hands down one of the best sound engineers on the island.
Remember Music = art. We must support it to keep it alive.
(Move mouse over pictures below to visit photo gallery)

Sunday, September 11, 2011

High Bluff holds a winning hand.

Keyboard in hand and monitor in front of me. The search for this weeks band is on. I've come across four young men calling themselves High Bluff. An alternative garage band from Ridge NY.

I was able to listen to their self-titled cd in its entirety at I really could see this band being played on Little Stevens underground garage show. And with this cd fresh in my mine. I was off to see there next show.

Personally I enjoyed this band live more so than their cd. Some bands just have that magic about them live. And for me High Bluff is one of those bands. Just like KISS. Their studio recordings were good. But live is were they shined.

Vocalist / Guitarist Anthony Q was bursting with energy from the very first note. His guitar playing complimented second guitar player Jeff Bloch like a fine tuned machine. Bare footed bass player Kevin Rim held down the low end. While drummer Bryan Henriques played the hell out of his drums. These guys reminded me of an early Nirvana. Check them out live and you'll see why.

This is why live music is so important. Sometimes studio recordings don't catch the magic of a band. It's the live performances where a band needs to be seen and heard and felt.

I was also impressed to see guitarist Jeff Bloch walk the crowd trying to sell cds after the show. Other bands should take a note right now. Sometimes you have to go to your audience. Rather than waiting for them to come to you.

For more information on this band go to

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

After Burn FDNY firefighting musicians

Who better than four FDNY firefighters calling themselves After Burn to breath life into the local music scene.

These instrument slinging firefighters played a blistering set of original / cover music on this hot sweaty night. Sprinkling a few covers into the set from AC/DC, STP and Zepplin. You get an idea what this bands originals are all about.

Joe Martin is their guitar player, songwriter and band manger. Its easy to say Joe wears many different hats for After Burn. It was Joe's desire to form an original hard rock band.

First to join was a bass player by the name of John Lopaz. A firefighter from the same South Bronx neighborhood that Joe had jammed with in the past.

With this duo in place the search for a drummer took place. After many failed attempts a buddy of Joe's got him touch with Mike Gallino. At first Mike wasn't interested in playing in another band. But as fate would have it he agreed to jam with them. And the magic couldn't be denied.

It was after a friendly ice hockey game a friend got them in touch with singer Richie Apps. Joe asked Richie to checkout some songs on their Reverb nation page. After one listen Richie wanted in. After Burn was now complete and ready to rock

They're hope is to resuscitate life into the local music scene. When asked about the future of After Burn. They're reply was simple. Get back into the studio, continue playing shows and having a good time.

Being all four members are FDNY firefighter's I asked them they're thoughts on 9/11. Without going into great detail the memory still haunts them. They ask us not to forget. And to be grateful everyday we have with family and friends.

For more information go to