After a short night, we woke up with a smile on our face in the warmth of our own bed… If you remember how cold it was on friday night, we made the right decision to sleep at home… Bacon and eggs for breakfast, some play time with the dogs and we where off for day two!

Groezrock-114I was a little sad to miss out on The Interrupters, but from what I was told, they played a real good show. The first band we got to see on saturday was, just like friday, a Belgian band. Our little country is packed with talented bands and these guys are one of them. Your Highness, is not your typical Groezrock band, with their mix of metal, stoner, sludge and hardcore they do know how to throw a punch. I was amazed to see such a big crowd for these guys and especially all the young hardcore kids (not because their music is bad, but because, well… it’s a Belgian band and they don’t really play “hardcore”). They put on one hell of a show and that grooving bass really took you on a wild ride. Your Highness comes with the official “Festival Man” stamp of approval!

Groezrock-148Next up was No Turning Back. These guys from Holland have been around for over 18 years and are still on the frontlines of todays hardcore scene. With their mix of old school hardcore, punk and metal they know how to put on a party and that’s what they did. I’m not sure if they have a loyal fan base, but the tent was packed and the pit was hard. No Turning back is one of those bands that you know will be around forever, and one that will always make quality records no mater what!

Groezrock-161We had plans to go see Teenage Bottle Rockets, but we ran into some friends and decided to have a beer or two with them and talk music, photography and life in general. Hey it’s a festival! We can’t be shooting pictures and writing in notebooks all day…

Groezrock-164Frenzal Rhomb, Australian punk rock legends… What to say about these guys… Aussies are always a little exotic and so is their punk rock. Yeah sure, it sounds like every other punk rock band in the world, but then again it doesn’t! Short funny songs about drugs, drinking and having fun, yeah sounds like every other punk rock band again, but they DON’T! Jay may be a celebrity in Australia, on stage he just rocks as hard as your local drunk punk singer. For most people in the crowd it was the first time to ever see these guys and you could feel the excitement in the air. What a great show it was!

Pizza time in the press area! Shout out to the guys that made these! HELL YEAH!!! Now that’s good eating!

Groezrock-48Do you know a better way to wash away a good pizza than beer and a show? Neither do I, so we went to see Reign Supreme. This metallic hardcore band from Philadelphia is heavy as fuck and for me was one of the highlights on saturday. To be honest, I was not familiar with their songs but they blew me away, me and so many others in the Back to Basics tent. When they played a song from Integrity I thought the tent was gonna explode, it didn’t, that was a little strange, but we can’t blame the kids for not knowing all the good stuff 😉

Groezrock-183Just before the Reign Supreme show we checked Psycho 44, another Belgian band that didn’t really fit the line-up. But again the crowd was there to support them and that filled my heart with pride. Not that I really care about Belgium as a country, but the fact that people not only go for the bigger bands or international bands, is something to be proud of. With their electronic rock (cuntrock as they call it) they appeal to the mainstream and underground the same and that makes them a pretty awesome band.

Groezrock-55It may not be “cool” to run around at a hardcore show with a Raised Fist shirt (they are not underground enough you know… Sigh…) but it sure is cool to see them perform. And by the looks of it, almost everybody wanted to be cool! The tent was so packed, it became hard to move around. With their modern sounding hardcore they take the genre to a new level, maybe not new, but inviting to people who don’t really know what hardcore is. The live shows are not at a beginners level, this is full throttle, straight on, in your face madness. Alexander barks out his lyrics as a mad dog while the rest of the band tries to keep up with the energetic frontman. Great show! Would never buy a record from these guys, but GREAT SHOW!

Groezrock-76Hey Tom, what band do your really want to see at Groez?” OFF! was the only answer… If you ran into somebody who did not know who Keith Morris was, you got a free ticket to kick ’em in the nuts. Plain and simple… Keith is a legend, and not only Keith… The rest of the band payed their dues to the gods of rock’n’roll with their former bands such as Rocket From The Crypt… Some years ago I got to see Black Flag at the Muddy Roots festival in Tennessee and it sucked! Not the festival, the festival was great and I’ve being going there for 3 years (in september we’ll be on our 4th mission) but the Black Flag show to me was crap! I don’t know why, older friends, who had seen BF in their early days thought it was great, and I respect this but… For me, nah, it sucked… But OFF!, that’s how I wanted Black Flag to sound. This raw energy, this “I don’t care” attitude, this “who the hell are you” look on Keith’s face… It was one of the best shows I’ve seen EVER! I say one, I think it’s out there with my first The Goddamn Gallows show, and first Turbonegro show. I had a huge smile on my face during this entire show. And if you where at this show, I know you had to, unless you where getting your ass kicked in the pit…

AGroezrock-95fter OFF! we needed to come back down, and running into friends with beer is the best way to do so… But the party wasn’t over. The Mighty Mighty Bosstones where yet to come! I’m always up for a good ska (punk) show and the Bosstones are master and commander of the genre. It was nothing less than a dance party from start to finish! There is nothing more to tell… DANCE MONKEY DANCE!

Groezrock-100The last band for us on this second and last day was Agnostic Front. These pioneers of New York hardcore hold a special place in my hearts. Maybe because they where one of those bands that got me into hardcore, maybe because I like tradition in music (where needed). I love me a good AG show, only one thing that bugs me almost every show… the vocals… On albums I have no problem with them, but live Roger’s vocals seems to disappear after the first two letters of every word he sings. And it really bugs me… It makes the show so much, well… less good… Again with this one, the music was fantastic, great songs, great vibe, but then Roger starts to sing and I look at the sound guy like it’s his fault and it’s not… And then again, who cares, it’s a hardcore show! I just said to myself, “fuck this, just enjoy and have party”. And so it was done!

Groezrock was over for us, we had to get up early to drive to another show in the morning. Boy did we have two fun-filled days with great music, great friends and a little too much beer. Thank you to all that made Groezrock what it is today. The bands, the crews, the volunteers, the fans… THANK YOU!

See you next year…

Last saturday we had some friends over for dinner and a show afterwards… But before dinner and the show we did a little interview and made one of them play some songs for us and the rest of our guests… We had fun, and are gratefull for having awesome friends!

The 2015 edition of the Groezrock Festival promised to be a good one, not only for the line-up of amazing bands playing this year, but also because we know that the people running this festival take care of their visitors, fans and bands alike. Just before we went on our way I went out to get gas and the car just shut down on me at the gas station. This was not a good way to start our day! After some calls I got a tow truck too where I was stranded and guess what… The batterycable came lose… I felt like such an idiot. Whatever… We got there! We checked ourself in for our press passes and dropped our gear in one of the lockers at the press tent. We are at a festival, so we set our priorities, before we do anything, “let’s have a beer!”  While sitting our ass down in the sun we noticed the dude sitting next to us, this day was going to be good, Mister Nick Oliveri was thinking the same thing we where, priorities, remember…

Groezrock-14 Toxic Shock was the first band we went to see, and that was not a bad choice. These guys from Antwerp play fast trashcore, oldschool style. After beating cancer Wally is back on the frontline to tell you how your life sucks. Jobs you don’t want to do, kids you love but don’t want to spend time with and how growing up suck… DEAL WITH IT. They played the Back to Basics stage, wich means no front, no security… A paradise for stagedivers. Maybe it was the early hour, maybe it was the fact that I have only seen them in small venue’s but the crowd was a little méh… They played their hearts out, Wally was even climbing 10 meters up in the stagesetup… Except for the people in the front the crowd did not really respond, I don’t get it, it was a great show! Their song “Monday is cancelled” got me all fired up and I was ready for a weekend of mayhem and destruction (only thing I destroyed was my liver and my wallet…)

When The Dwarves play a festival it’s always a risk, are these guys gonna fuck it all up or is it going to be great? Who remembers the 20 minute show they played in Aarschot some years ago? Nick Oliveri walked on stage full monty and the crowd loved it before they even played a note. Blag was in a great mood and was ready for a party. Did The Dwarves invent rock n roll? No! Do they play it and make it sound so much better? YES! It’s always fun to see a band interact with their fans and when Blag got into the crowd he won the hearts of all there, he did lose his mic, but that’s not his problem. I did see some girls looking at Nick, wondering and hoping if he was going to follow Blag’s example… Don’t blame them for dreaming, besides being a great bassist he got something else pretty great to the dislike of many male fans in the crowd… I mentioned this before in a previous post, but if you want your punkrock PC, stay far away from The Dwarves. But if you just want to party, get drunk and have an awesome time this is your band! If you missed them, make sure it doesn’t happen again!

After The Dwarves it was time to hang out a little, meet up with friends, have a few beers and just enjoy the atmosphere. Groezrock is one of those festivals that are great to just be there, hang, drink wander around… Getting a beer mostly ends up in a chat with a stranger, even for a few seconds… We all understand why we’re here…

Groezrock-31I HATE AUSSIES!!! They think they are the best people in the world, they think they have the prettiest girls in the world, they think they have the best BBQ in the world and they even think they have the best beer in the world! Fuck ’em! My ex-boss was one and he’s a dickhead! (I’m just kidding, I love you Mike, and most aussies…) The Smith Street Band are according to the world-wide web a folkpunk band. I did not hear any folk… What I did hear was an indie punk band that knows how to write a song. This show was pure fun, for the people in the crowd, it was a big crowd, and for the band on stage. If they got payed for every smile they had on their face they would have been millionaires. One thing did bother me, if you’re playing at the Back to Basics stage, you know there will be people on stage diving and trying to sing along in the microphone. Don’t push them away, don’t get upset about it, they buy your records and merch. Be glad they want to be there with you and make this show what it is. I really loved this show, but for some reason, the image of the singer pushing away the girl who just wanted to sing along stuck with me.

Groezrock-67The next stop was Iron Reagan from Richmond, Virginia. Oh my god, what a party this was. Trash is back, that’s for sure. Hardcore kids going crazy on trash metal? Not when I was a kid. The mood was set right from the start, stagedivers everywhere and moshpits all around. I could see Nick Oliveri standing on the side of the stage approving it all with a big grin on his face. If there is one thing I like it’s an open mind and this band is the living proof that taste is a genre crossing thing. Nobody cares if you like punk, metal or hardcore, or should not care… Iron Reagan grabbed the crowd by the back of their neck and pulled them into a hurricane of noise and chaos. It was marvelous!

Groezrock-83We had no plans to go see Broilers, but I was a little curious about how a these guys would do. I was also convinced that the only reason they got booked for the festival was to get more Germans to the festival. But while Inny was shooting pictures frontstage, I got hooked on their sound. Catchy punk’n’roll, that you just want to dance to. I loved it! If these guys where not singing in German they would be huge world-wide!

Groezrock-104If there was one band I needed to see on this first day it was Social Distortion. The hours went by and my anticipation grew stronger by the minute. Was I expecting to much? Where they going to be a big disappointment? While my adrenalin went up, the temperature dropped, it was getting really cold in the field and the folks not willing to embark on this adventure with me started to turn home or to their tents in search of some warmth. I kissed Inny goodbye for her epic journey into the frontstage to shoot pictures of Mister Mike Ness… When I was a kid I didn’t like Social D, it was not hard enough for me, but with age comes wisdom and all of a sudden it spoke to me. These are just good songs! It took them some time to start and I was not getting drunk, but when they walked on stage and those first notes got played I got an instant high. A big smile on my face and I felt like I was the only one there. It was this good. Mike’s voice sounds better with age and the sound was spot on. They played as tight as a nun’s asshole and for a moment I was king of the world… 3 songs in I had to come down because I knew Inny was going to get kicked out of the frontstage with the rest of the photographers and finding one another in this crowd sucks. She came out frozen and in pain from taking pictures all day, and as Mike I’m a gentleman so I decided it was time to head home for the night.

The dogs where waiting to keep us warm and day two was just a few hours away…

This is an interview from months ago. Remember those others we did? Now that Austin is on tour in Europe, we thought it would be perfect to release this one. Austin doesn’t appear to be a funny guy, but he is, and this interview shows that. While his songs and devotion to his music are dead serious, he can be a goofball. We had the privilege to hang out with him on his last euro tour a lot and at Muddy Roots and thus became friends. If you live in Europe and he’s doing a show in your neighbourhood, go see it and take it all in. It could change your life… Enjoy…

1. Introduce yourself to our readers please.
My name is Austin Robert Lincoln Stirling. I rarely wash my pants. I want sweet tea.

2. On what record would you have loved to play? (any style, artist, whatever)
Mine. I didn’t get to play on mine. Everyone who played on the albums were hired studio musicians and they wore my clothes, slept in my bed, used my tooth-brush and drank my sweat tea during recording as to get a feel for my life. (Not true)

3. What is the first concert that made a real impression on you and made you want to play music?
Horse the Band opened for Gwar. And I wasn’t really there to see Gwar as much as I wanted to see HTB and that was a pretty intense set that really sticks out in my mind. “God what awful ruckus” was just that btw. Other than that Andrew Bird blew my mind when I got to see him! I was amazed and always appreciated the creativity behind everything he does. Oh and I only got to see the first 3 songs in Bon Ivers set and it was hands down the most I have ever been moved by music! More intense than any metal show I’ve ever been to. Hard to explain. Just amazing.

4. Is there a musician/artist you really want to work with and why?
I’m playing with two guys that I respect musically at the moment. And that’s Henry Berger and Cris Bissell of S.S. WEB. So they are def two of them and here I am blessed enough to be doing just that.

5. How did you end up in this “roots” scene?
I don’t know how I ended up here. God moves and I try to be just a stick in the current.

6. Do you believe in aliens, and if so… What does their music sounds like?
I have a shoe box under my bed and it’s full of thoughts and opinions that I have and feel I must keep to myself. A lot of the topics and beliefs I have go into that shoebox. It’s not very big but I rarely take topics out of that box to discus. If I do, I do it discreetly and I speak pretty softly about those topics. Aliens are one of those topics in that box. But if they have music it would def sound like farts.

7. Who do you believe to be the most overrated band on the planet at this moment, and why?
All of them and non of them. That’s all relative. With that said ween makes me want to start wars and set myself in fire. But someone might dig them. So high five to them. But yeah I wish I was a dead person whenever I hear ween.

8.Just like any “scene” this one will explode in time, how do you see the future of this new “roots” movement?
Eh there’s no telling really. It seems to be getting bigger and more well known. Or it could be dying off and I’m to busy listening to Joe Huber to notice. But either way I will still have heartburn and Taylor Swift will still be selling more albums than all of us combined. And I’m ok with that.

9. What band or record do you really like, but you are a little a shamed about?
I’m not ashamed of anything I like. I openly announce that I have some crappy taste in music. I do like Fatlip or Aesop rock (the two songs I have on my iPod) I love super mellow singer songwriter stuff. Ya know the real sensitive stuff perfect to take a bubble bath to fashioned with bath beads and a luffa. And that’s mainly what I listen to. I learned that I am a calmer, gentler person day to day if I listen to softer music. So instead or crankin Ed Gene in the mornings before I’ve even had enough time to get a bagel, I’ll turn on some James Vincent mccmorrow or Gregory Allen isakov. My day is just sexy then.

10. Eating dog shit or record with Toby Keith?
Depends. If we are writing a song about how Toby can’t write a song I may be ok with that. I could take the money I make from selling my soul and buy a wallaby because I want to cuddle and watch always sunny with one and she could also carry my tv remote and guitar picks in her pouch for me and I’ll never loose them.

Doing a review for an album that your friends recorded is always hard. You want it to be good, so you don’t need to be an asshole and look for words or phrases to describe it, so it doesn’t come out that bad… In this case that was not the deal.

If you’re reading this blog you should have heard the names Liz Sloan and Jared McGovern more than once and you should have seen them on stage with one or another band in the past. And you should be aware of the musical quality these two wonderful folks have to offer.

Before I really start this review I want to take a trip down memory lane…

For those that have seen Liz when she was playing with Bob Wayne, would you have thought that she would ever sing a note? Or even more recent, her first European tour with the Broken Band… If not for her fiddle, she looked so shy, the microphone was her biggest enemy… A year later she comes back with that same band and “hey, that girl can sing” was what we where all thinking. Even if she was still in the background, her voice had this special place in the sound of the Broken Band and I knew some day it would be her time to shine, apart from her fiddle playing.

Then we have Jared, the wild man, slapping’ his bass like a maniac and screaming where screams were needed… A bass player, doing what he was supposed to do, providing a beat in a drummer-less band… Oh c’mon this guy can’t write a song or sing a tune, he’s wild, he’s a bass player, after the show you put him in his cage and feed him a banana… (this is not my opinion, this is just me writing, don’t get upset… it’s meant to be funny…)

Last year they proved us all wrong, Liz and Jared being in a relationship, provided us with an excellent debut album on which they showed the world they could stand on their own feet. And for an album that was born out of not touring, boredom and Jared learing a new instrument, it sure made an impact.

“Addicted to the Road” was a good debut record and if you have even half of a musical ear, you knew that these two had more to offer. With “Vehicle in Transit” they took that step forward. It’s a pretty traditional album, no punk, no screaming, no big anti this or that lyrics. Just pure songs, recorded with friends about life and what makes us tick.

The record opens with “75 Southbound Blues” and with just this one song they show you what the album is all about. Sing-a-long lyrics, uptempo tunes and great musicianship. Old time music played from the heart with a modern sound.

After “Something That’s Never Been Done” we get “Chocolate Easter Bunny” and it’s a damn funny song originally by Phil Hummer, about how we buy, use and throw away stuff in our modern nowadays society.

“Tennessee Moon” with Mister James Hunnicutt on backing vocals sounds like it comes straight out of them good ol’days, when country music was country music (I have no idea what I’m talking about…, it’s just a great song).

In “Walk This Earth” we get a whole lot of Liz’s beautiful voice, I’m not sure what, but there is something about her way of singing. It sounds old, not old like an elderly woman, but old in soul. It’s a love song and a damn good one. Is it cheesy? Not really, it’s lovey dovey, but c’mon, from time to time even the most hardcore badass needs a little loving and that’s just what this song provides.

When listening to this album you start to think if it’s autobiographical, “Found out about You” is one of those songs that may trigger that feeling. One can only imagine how it is to be on the road with the one you love and have little to no privacy, every step you take, every drink you drink, folks see you and talk about it… It’s a real honky-tonk song and that electric guitar takes it to a higher level.

“What Takes a Woman” throws me back a couple of years and to every day I spend with my wife… The Broken Band came over for dinner at our place and just after, Liz disappeared into our bathroom, an hour and a half later… No Liz… “C’mon girl, we need to be going, got a show to play”! Minutes later she walked into the livingroom looking all purdy and sweet. Yeah boys, that’s what they do it for. For us to shut the hell up and be like… “damn, I love that girl…” That’s what Liz does, that’s what my wife does, that’s what they all do, and we as dumb caveman love them and forgive them instantly! Oh and it’s also a good song about the difference between the sexes. I forget sometimes this is a review…

Up next we get a great swing song by the name “Ballad of Charlotte and Charlie” on wich Liz and Jared get the help from Keith Roberts from Call me Bronco. If you have been on the road as long as these two have, you make good friends and you know what’s even better than good friends? Good friends that can play great music! It’s the darkest song on the album about a man loving his wife so much that he is prepared to die for her. Fellows, if you feel like this about your girl, she’s a keeper or just a heartbreaking bitch, that’s up to y’all to figure out.

Further down the road we come to “Praying for Rain”, another country diddle that moves by slowly like an almost dried up creek, could be the one that’s mentioned in the song. The atmosphere created by the music perfectly fits the lyrical theme and you almost feel sad for the protagonist.

There’s two traditionals on the record, the first one is “Big Spike Hammer”, but it’s on “Kitchen Girl/June Apple” that our fierce pioneers go all out. Stretching it to a six-minute plus epic piece of music. Starting the song and keeping it close to how most of us know it, but when notes go by, the tempo goes up and it turns into something we would expect from The Broken Band. These are two separate songs blended into one perfect gift to the audience. A party song pur sang!

“Just Over The Horizon” brings us to the end of the album, and if the phrase, going out with a bang, ever had a meaning, it’s this song! I’m damn sure this song came into existence when they where touring with The Freeborn Brothers from Poland. The Eastern European/gypsy vibe can not be denied. And for me this was the highlight of the album, but that can be because I’m European and somewhere, deep inside, there must be some gypsy…

Some additional info: The album was recorded at Electric Eye in Pittsburgh and comes with amazing cover art by Christoph Heuer, who you should know from the Muddy Roots posters and the video he did for The Tillers. It will be released on Roots Union Records in a few weeks.

 

http://urbanpioneersmusic.com

 

I love my job! I got to interview the amazing ladies in Kountry Kittens Burlesque and Girlbrains. They are on tour with Fishgutzzz and damn they are funny (and nice and good-looking and hot and talky and chatty and lovely and all round great people! Enjoy the interview, if you can call it that, they just kept on talking… And then enjoy Girlbrains taking it to another level of weird…

Last night we payed a visit to The Pirate Farm Radio HQ for a Beagle Session on location. It turned out to be one the funniest things ever… Enjoy the interview and the live show! I know we did…

In 2011 psychobilly/rootsrockers Black Cat Bone Squad from Belgium released a split album with Crispy Jones from Germany. The album was limited to only a 100 copies for each band and BCBS sold them all real fast. I had the original album but lost it somewhere down the road. Last week BCBS decided to re-release the songs they did for the split on a ep. It’s a burned copy on a cd that looks like a record, stuck in a self-folded paper sleeve, nothing fancy… When you order it, ask Sweetboy, the bassplayer, to draw something on the sleeve for you, I know he loves doing this… I’m glad they re-released it, for a couple of reasons: the songs on this ep are so damn good, it doesn’t have the Crispy Jones songs, it’s not limited and it’s cheap as fuck!

“Crack in the Mud” is the first song and if you like to shake your ass, this song is right up your alley. A short mid-tempo roots rocker that’s driven by the rhythm section while Jumpin’ Jim lays down some sweet licks on his Gretch. Before you know it the song is over and you’re looking for the repeat button. Next up we have “Johnny Ska”. No, this is not a ska song, it’s kind of a ska song, but not a ska song, it’s a ska tribute, it’s a rootsy ska song, it’s a… Ah fuck it, it’s a SKA SONG! And then again it’s not… If it’s one thing, it’s a good song…

If you have seen our first Beagle Session you have heard the next song on this ep. “Truck Driver” was first released on the debut album, but Jo (Jumpin’ Jim) also plays this song as a solo act. In this version we get a laid-back, bluesy version of what was a straightforward rock’n’roll song. I like this one over the orignal. It’s darker, more intense, the sound of the bass in the background gives it a creepy feeling, like there is something lurking in the dark…
Next up we have “Legendary Shakin’ of the Shack” and if you know anything about roots music it shouldn’t take you more than 2 seconds to figure out what this song is all about. Yes indeed, Th’ Legendary Shack Shackers! Is it a ripoff? No! It’s the perfect tribute!
The title song, “Monsters R Go” is a great straight-up psychobilly song with one of the funniest phrases I’ve ever heard in psycho, “Your daddy is a zombie, and your mother doesn’t know”. If these guys would get some more recognition this song would be a great sing-along at live shows.

You can order the ep at their facebook page or buy it at one of their shows.

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Black-Cat-Bone-Squad

Hailing from Asheville, North Carolina, Skunk Ruckus is a band that according to their webpage blends elements of old time music with punk, as so many other bands claim to do these days. I don’t care if there’s a million of these bands out there, as long as they are all as good as these guys. The punk influence is minimal, but nicely done. Even the typical old time music is minimal, well yeah, they use a washboard and banjo, but it doesn’t sound like they are trying to be this 1930’s band gone punk… Where most bands stay far away from electric guitar and bass, Skunk Ruckus embraces them to give their sound that extra kick.

An important aspect of this band and therefore this album is Mr. Jim Daddy’s vocals. Nick Cave comes to mind more then once when I hear him sing, and that’s a huge compliment.

“Billy Mac” kicks the album in first gear and takes you on a wild ride with a homicidal maniac and sets the tone for the rest of the album. Dark storytelling, creepy vibes and great musicianship. Next up is “Pretty Little Things” and here’s that Nick Cave vibe for the first time. Girls hold your men tight, dance with him and when you look into his eyes… You know you’re fucked… He’s a killer…

“The Devil Must Be Beating His Wife” is a great uptempo song that will get every crowd rocking like fools. In Belgium we say “it’s carnaval in Hell” when the sun is shining and the rain is coming down at the same time, but I like this phrase way more.

Rolling into “Darling Corey” Skunk Ruckus upholds the tempo and delivers a great version of this traditional song about love, loss and moonshine. Before you know it there’s a “Mosquito” buzzing around your head and as the real little bloodsucker this song is irritating, but that scratch after the bite can be so rewarding, doesn’t make sense, I know, just listen…

As the album moves on with “Hello” we come to “You let me Stay”, a balladesque song that once again proves that for every stupid drunk there is a girl dumb enough to take him in. Thank you girls, we try, we realy do… “Tear It Down” is also a traditional, but wrapped in a punk/rockabilly blanket with a great kazoo part that will put a huge smile on your face.

I think that “Little Margaret” can best be discribed as a gothic country song, it’s eerie, dark, building up, waiting to explode, waiting, waiting… If they could get Lonesome Wyatt to record this song with them, this would be an instant classic. Don’t get me wrong, the song is fantastic, but listening to it, I could just hear Jim and Wyatt sing this together. “Zombie Love Song” sounds like an old psychobilly song on your recordplayer at the wrong tempo. And even then it sounds cool…

By now you should have figured out that I realy like this album and I’m sure most of our readers will too. I hope they get the opportunity to show all of you what they are about and make you dance, drink and party like crazy.

Check out the album here:

http://skunkruckus.bandcamp.com

Order the album here:

https://www.facebook.com/SkunkRuckus

 

Saturday, january 17… Sprexfest… A great new festival in Belgium hosted by Mark Sprex from The Rhumba Kings. We had the drunken pleasure to sit down with Johnny and talk movies, music, beer and bro-country… This is what we could save from all that we shot…

Last week Long Line Down came from Denmark to belgium to start their tour with Vintage Vince. On a cold tuesday afternoon that same week they showed up at our doorstep to play some songs and do an interview in our livingroom. It was a great day, check the video and enjoy. For the future, keep an eye on these young guys, they are going to make it big!

https://www.facebook.com/LongLineDown?fref=ts

If you are a traditional psychobilly fan only, walk away and walk fast… All those that do not wear their ass as a hat and like some good, fast and hard-hitting tunes, gather around and enjoy this album from The Silverhounds!!!
Hailing from New Jersey this threesome have created an excellent mix between psychobilly, metal and punk. Sounds like a cliché you say? Well to bad for you then, this album rocks your grandmother’s girdle off. Only after the fifth song she will get a chance to put it back on, and maybe sensually strip down again to “Chained”, a murder ballad so campy (in a good way) that it would have been perfect for a murder scene in the movie Cry Baby (why is there no such scene in that movie?).

Before “Chained” the album blasts of with “Dying Breath”, which sets the tune with a pure heavy metal intro, and then evolves into a psychobilly stomper and so becomes the stepping stone for the rest of this album. The Misfits or Danzig are never far away, but you can not accuse these guys of ripping off. It’s something similar, but completely different, like the girl scouts and Al Qaeda.

Rolling into “Devil Inside” we get the full potential of this band, fast as the roadrunner, the bassdrum and doghouse provide a solid construction for Derek on guitar to go apeshit. Daniel’s vocals once again prove that he’s the perfect guy to sing these songs.

An important thing is the sound on this album. Even when the songs go into overdrive, the sound is still crystal clear. Many bands get lost in the chaos when doing these type of songs, The Silverhounds proudly hold their heads above the raging water and surf the sonic waves that they create. As an independent band without any label support I can only salute this. To wrap things up, if you like psychobilly, metal, punk or just have an open mind, check these guys out. Buy their albums, go see a show, put them on stage… Enjoy!

 

http://www.thesilverhounds.com/

Two weeks ago we were invited to Sprexfest in Aarschot by Pirate Farm Radio to do some interviews with the bands playing there. This is the first we did. The Blue Eyed Bandits are great guys and you even may recognize some of their members. Kurt De Bont, their washboard player/drummer, is the main force behind Rootstown bookings and Jo, on guitar and vocals is also the frontman for Black Cat Bone Squad. Last weekend I went to Germany with these guys and they sure know how to party… Enjoy…

Holy Crow!!!! That was the first thing that came to mind when this album started to make its rounds in my cd player. The Maker (also the name of the first song) blasts of in pure aggression after a minute or so intro that sets a creepy atmosphere that you would normally find on a death or black metal album. Mikey’s first words just add to this feeling and when Joe Perreze unleashes his demons seconds later you know you’re in for a wild and blasphemous ride…

Two songs in and you’re looking for things in your living room to destroy, people to hit in the face, smash things up and go ape shit! I’ve seldomly come across an album that triggers these emotions after just two songs… “This is the best Goddamn Gallows album ever!” was all I could think, and after Seven Devils I was really sceptic if they could top it.

With every song the band drags you further into their world of darkness and despair and it just feels like home. Some months ago Baby Genius told us he hates it when the band is called a roots band and with this album they make a statement that indeed that term is not one to use for The Goddamn Gallows. The instruments used on this album would indeed suggest you where going to listen to a “roots” album, but I don’t think that even their most loyal fans could have seen this curve ball coming. It’s not that their sound has changed that much, they just brought it unto an other level. The sonic assault that is The Maker just blasts your socks off…

After seven songs the band allows you your first moment to get your stuff back together and take a deep breath with the song Ol’ Dusty Trail but after that they drag you’re sweaty, blood drenched corpse back down for a second wild ride on this roller coaster from hell that is The Maker. With this album the guys have reached a new level of musical rulership and if there ever was a metal or punk festival that has the balls to put them on the same bill with your most brutal black metal or most radical punk band, The Goddamn Gallows would still come out victorious, if people would only have an open mind…

The album is released by Farmageddon Records and recorded and mixed by Andy Gibson who we know as the steel guitar player for Hank III. Joe Perreze is responsible for the great artwork.
Good news for our European readers, the boys will be touring Europe this year! We’ve had the privileges to see them live four times and if you’ve never seen GG Allin perform, this is the next best thing. You know what… Fuck GG, the Gallows RULE!

P.S. Thank you Wendi D Story for introducing me to the phrase “Holy Crow”.
P.P.S. Don’t let the ghost of GG Allin read this, I have way to much respect for the godfather of scumfucks, but this review needed to go out with a bang…

http://www.thegoddamngallows.com

http://www.farmageddonrecords.com/

Jumpin’ Jim, singer and guitar player for Black Cat Bone Squad came over to our place and he played some songs. The idea was to invite touring bands into our living room, let them play some songs, do a little interview and just see what happens. But before that could take place we needed a tryout. Jo (Jumpin’ Jim is his stage name) is a longtime friend and he was happy to do it. You can see the result in the video, we know it’s not perfect, we need to do a bunch of fine tuning, but I think this one will not put us or him to shame… Enjoy…

 

P.S.: If you can help us out with a good video editing program, feel free to contact us. You will notice that at the end something went wrong, and we can use your help…

 

The boys from Poland have a new album out, and the first thing that I noticed is that they are not trying to sound like an American band. They have such an original sound, the album name discribes it perfectly and not at all. What could one expect when hearing Gypsy Hobo Trash Grass for the first time?

The album is mostly banjo and guitar driven with Niko’s steady footdrumming. Matt plays a mean ass accordion and that gives the album it’s gypsy side. So where does the hobo, grass or trash come in, you ask? Well every song is a new adventure, taking you “down to hell” on the 8th track or “Marching to your grave” on the 13th. Even if they are just a two men band, the number of instruments that go in every song makes it so exciting. And yes they pull it of live! In just one song you can see Niko switch from banjo to washboard and back without losing any soul or power.

Both guys have a great voice and know when to let the other take the lead. Some of you may find it hard the first few times to listen through the accents but for me this is one thing that makes this album even better. I don’t think it would have the same impact if they would sing in perfect English. Here is where the gypsy feel comes back in.

The record has a charming live sound, and this is not an excuse for a crappy sound. You get the feeling they are playing in your livingroom or the backseat of your car when driving. I suggest you don’t play this album in your car unless you’re a skilled driver. This is a party album… Maybe not in lyrical content, but damn sure music wise…

Here at Old Style Music Nights we had the pleasure to see these guys play live so many times and feed them a good home cooked meal while they where on the road and let me tell you, apart from being great musicians they are great people. They are trying to get to the USA in 2015 and I hope they get there. Holy crow, the crowd would love it, I can see them blow the imaginary roof of a tent at Muddy Roots, they did it once in Belgium and that’s the mini version…

You can buy the album directly from the band or you can buy it online via their bandcamp page.

http://freebornbrothers.com/

http://freebornbrothers.bandcamp.com/

If you have ever been to a The Goddamn Gallows show you can’t look past Baby Genius (for you smartass fuckers: insert joke about his height here…). The man is a ticking time bomb of pure raw energy waiting to explode in your face and release the demons from the darkest abyss of hell onto the stage. Besides that he’s a friendly guy… I remember my first Gallows show, Muddy Roots 2012, I was blown away! For our European readers, The Goddamn Gallows will be at Muddy Roots Europe this year and they will be touring the rest of Europe as well! Go see them, drive, fly, teleport for all I care!
This is the last one in our series of “ten random questions”, we go out with a bang…
Y’all motherfuckers need… Baby Genius!

1. Introduce yourself to our readers please.
I’m Baby Genius of the Goddamn Gallows. I beat on the brat aka the drums.

2. On what record would you have loved to play? (any style, artist, whatever)
I would love to be the new singer of Gwar.

3. What is the first concert that made a real impression on you and made you want to play music?
I was 9 years old, my mother took me to see Ratt in ’89. After that I was sold on rock ‘n roll music. I had a piece of Steven Pierce’s shirt and I would tie it around my head and stand on my dresser and sing Rat songs to the neighborhood kids.

4. Is there a musician/artist you really want to work with and why?
I’d like to work with a few different producers and I’d like to make a rap record with some hip hop artists, Killa Mike, Yella wolf, maybe Master P.

5. How did you end up in this “roots” scene?
It just kinda happened, we had an upright bass so we got lumped in with psychobilly bands and after a few years it just happened. I loved country and bluegrass so did the rest of the band but we never really where going for roots. I don’t know, just because we had a mandolin and a banjo we weren’t trying to be any type of music or genre. We just didn’t want to follow the leader, we cut our own path. Now that’s all it is, roots or die, I prefer punk, metal and rap.

6. Do you believe in aliens, and if so… What does their music sounds like?
I do believe in aliens and honestly I think they don’t have music. There is more to what they do then we could ever know and if they do have music, I bet it’s like native drums.

7. Who do you believe to be the most overrated band on the planet at this moment, and why?
The most overrated band? Way too many to name but it’s on the radio now so tune out please.

8. Just like any “scene” this one will explode in time, how do you see the future of this new “roots” movement?
Honest answer – I never cared for scenes and I think the wrong bands will be the ones that “make it”. I don’t consider our band a roots band and I hope if we ever “make it” we won’t be labeled as that, we are a punk band. I mean Modest Mouse uses a banjo in lots of songs and they are not considered roots.

9. What band or record do you really like, but you are a little ashamed about?
I listen to pop punk and rap/hip hop. I like Fall Out Boy and Blink 182.

10. Eating dog shit or record with Toby Keith?
I’d just rob Toby Keith, fuck it!

http://www.thegoddamngallows.com/

We (my wife and I) first got in contact with Jason Galaz in 2012, or maybe 2011 when we had seen the line-up for the 2012 Muddy Roots Music Festival in Cookeville. I told her to look at it and asked if we should go, remember we live in Belgium, and she just said, “yeah sure, why not”. She caught me by surprise there… We had been traveling a big part of the world but never went to the USA. So we started making plans… But us being Belgians we needed to know a bunch of stuff about the festival, how to get there, how to get this and that… So I started to mail Jason on Facebook and just overloaded him with questions and he always replied with useful info. I liked that! What started out as an internet Q and A transformed into a friendship and I’m proud that I can call this man a friend. He does a great job with this whole Muddy Roots thingy and by his doing I gained so much more friends from all over the world that we came across at his festivals. We have 6 Muddy Roots festivals under our belt (3 in the USA and 3 in Europe) so we are veterans! And we owe it all to this man, enjoy!

1. Introduce yourself to our readers please.
Jason Galaz, the man behind everything Muddy Roots.

2. On what record would you have loved to play? (any style, artist, whatever)
I don’t know the first thing about playing music but I’d love to be in the room while some records are being recorded. Specifically all the early country and blue stuff like Jimmie Rodgers and Charlie Patton. Same goes with Hank Williams and Led Zeppelin.

3. What is the first concert that made a real impression on you and made you want to play music?
My first concert was Suicidal Tendencies, Metallica, Fight and Candle Box.  Alice In Chains was supposed to play but due to addiction issues  they canceled. It was 1993, I was 13 and it was mayhem.  It was in San Bernardino California which is a crazy ass place. I saw people get sliced with flattened beer cans, mosh pits around make shift fire pits, and folks were taking toilet paper rolls (the big ones) out of portapotties, lighting them on fire and throwing them into the crowd.  There were cops on horse back on the perimeter. That kind of mayhem had a huge effect on me. It was my first taste of pure anarchy in a music setting and made an impact on my young mind.

4. Is there a musician/artist you really want to work with and why? 
Many of them and most of them we end up doing so one way or another. I mean there are bigger names I can’t reach like Dwight Yoakam and The Stooges but that’s because I am not wealthy.

5. How did you end up in this “roots” scene?
I had moved to Nashville from California and was looking for music that filled the hole in my soul. I needed something deeper than what I was used to.  I started listening to Dwight Yoakam more often, came across Hank 3 and then my brother passes me a free digital cd from Soda Gardocki.  That mix right there was enough to get the wheels moving. I began looking for music I could feel more and eventually ended up finding places for them to play in my area so I could experience it live.

6. Do you believe in aliens, and if so… What does their music sounds like? 
I believe in illegal aliens. In America it would sound like Conjunto music but could also be Narco Mexicano music. The first would be my music of choice. Think Muddy Roots in Mexico, that’s what it is to me. The Hank WIlliams singers south of the border.

7. Who do you believe to be the most overrated band on the planet at this moment, and why?
That changes weekly. It is whoever is #1 on the charts. I don’t hate these people though. They are the product of a massive investment. If I had a bajillion dollars I’d put my own bands up top.

8. Just like any “scene” this one will explode in time, how do you see the future of this new “roots” movement?
There is no scene. Keep the walls off the movement allows it to grow organically in any direction it needs to.

9. What band or record do you really like, but you are a little a shamed about?
I listen to a TON of shitty music. I can’t listen to “Muddy Roots” type bands all day. It’s too good for my soul. It makes me want to just hang out and drink beer. I need to keep focused on work. I find gangster rap most motivational. They are always talking about hustlin’ and stuff.  Sometimes I’ll switch to drum n bass or even old techno. The tempo keeps me working just like it would in a gym.  Oh, and if I am feeling real cray cray I will put on Die Antword. That shit is weird.

10. Eating dog shit or record with Toby Keith?
I’d absolutely record Toby Keith and make millions off him. I just wouldn’t put the Muddy Roots logo on it. Shallow people need shallow music. That’s their problem. I gots bills yo.

You can find all the info you need about Muddy Roots at:
http://www.muddyrootsrecords.com/index.php

If you have never been to a Muddy Roots event, 2015 is the year to do so. It doesn’t matter who you are, what job you have or don’t have, what the colour of your skin is or which what country you come from. At Muddy Roots we’re all family. I can honestly say that we have had to most fun on the planet at each and every one we went to and got to know the most beautiful, crazy and kindest people in the world. So what’s holding you back?

Here at Old Style Music Nights HQ we had the idea to ask ten of the same questions to a bunch of different people who we respect for what they do in this world. Being it musicians, label owners, festival bookers, whatever. Over the weeks you’ll see them come all by… Remember, they all got the same questions, this could get weird…
We start this series with Jared McGovern, singer and banjo player for The Urban Pioneers. For our readers in Europe, good news, they will be touring here from November 14 to December 21. That last show is a show I’m doing, so if you are somewhere around Diest (Belgium) that date, come and dance with us at The Celt! Find all tour dates and info via the link at the end of this interview.

1. Introduce yourself to our readers please.
My name is Jared McGovern, I play banjo and sing in the Urban Pioneers.  I wear size 11 shoes and need a haircut pretty bad. I’m engaged to Liz, who plays fiddle and sings in the Urban Pioneers.  We live together in a bus parked on our bass player’s (Guido) property in East Tennessee.

2. On what record would you have loved to play? (any style, artist, whatever) 
I’m greedy. One time I found a magic lamp and a genie gave me three wishes. My first wish was to ask for unlimited wishes.
I wish I could have played on Michael Jackson’s Thriller. First because it is fucking awesome and second because it’s the highest grossing song of all time and I’d be rich as hell and be able to do a lot of good with that money.

3. What is the first concert that made a real impression on you and made you want to play music?
The first concert I ever went to was Lollapalooza in 1994 and that show warped my fragile mind forever.  The line up was insane – Metallica, Rancid, Ramones, Rage Against The Machine, The Melvins, and a bunch of other bands.I still remember that day like it was yesterday, it made such an impression on me. I remember the weather being beautiful and riding with my friend in his mom’s car listening to Jimi Hendrix and bouncing off the walls with anticipation. I had seen concert footage before but I had never experienced anything like it. I was mostly excited for Rancid, the Ramones, and Metallica and I lost my mind when they played. As soon as they started I went straight for the pit and my buddy shoved me down and I got the shit stomped out of me.It was awesome!! That day changed me forever.  After that day I became a serious music lover and tried to go to as many shows as possible.

4. Is there a musician/artist you really want to work with and why?
That is a really tough one. I want to work with lots of artists. I love collaborations and letting yourself go to be influenced by other writers and musicians. I am very new at this song writing thing so recently I’ve been trying to surround myself by song writers I admire to see if it will rub off on me. I’ve been talking to Brook Blanche a little bit about this song idea I have and I’m excited to see how that turns out. I was also talking in the past about putting together a truck driving album that will have an all-star cast of folks like James Hunnicutt, Wyatt Maxwell, and Adam Lee. All that stuff takes time though so hopefully we’ll actually make it happen.

5. How did you end up in this “roots” scene?
If you told me 20 years ago that I would be singing and playing banjo in a hillbilly band I would’ve slapped you. I went through lots of phases, haircuts, and bands in the past and it was all fun as hell. The position I am in now came from a long line of sometimes great and sometimes horrible decisions. Life is a journey and everything you do today will affect where you are and who you are tomorrow. I started playing music as a horrible guitar player in punk bands. I wanted to play music but I was such a bad guitar player that I knew I needed to try to play something else to be able to join a band because no one would want me as a guitar player. I really really sucked. I don’t know why but for some reason I thought I’d be able to play fiddle. I got a cheap fiddle off eBay and tried to play it for a couple of weeks until I gave up. That shit is hard! Then I had some interest in playing upright bass. I didn’t have money for one though so I built a wash tub bass and that thing was awesome. I was hooked!
Mind you at this time I had just moved to a new town and didn’t have any friends or have a clue where to go see shows. I didn’t know any fellow musicians or anything so I was pretty much left on my own to figure stuff out.
After playing the wash tub bass for a little while I went and splurged and got myself a used Engelhardt bass from a music shop. I loved that thing so much, I played until my fingers bled and then I taped them up and played some more. After a few months of figuring out the bass I had the confidence to play with some people so I started searching around for other musicians. I played with anybody and everybody I could. I was having a good time but none of the bands seemed to stick or have the same idea that I had in mind until I started Soul Reapin 3. I had a ton of fun with that band. We were a psychobilly band based out of Connecticut and Dennis, from Sawyer Family played guitar and sang too.
I finally got to the point where I wanted to give this music thing a full-time shot. Our drummer had a great teaching job that he didn’t want to give up so I left SR3 in pursuit of another band where I can play music full-time. I did a month with The Hillbilly Hellcats in Europe and when I got back I got a phone call that Bob Wayne was looking for a bass player. I packed my stuff immediately and met the band in Austin, TX to join the tour.

6. Do you believe in aliens, and if so… What does their music sounds like?
I totally believe in aliens!! I don’t think they have music like we have music. I bet aliens don’t have the ability to hear like we do, they have other weird senses and stuff that we can’t even imagine. If humans heard alien music it would make us poop our pants and our head would explode

7. Who do you believe to be the most overrated band on the planet at this moment, and why?
The most overrated band on the planet is the wrist band. I mean think about it, it’s just a piece of plastic that goes around your wrist. It can’t cost more than 3 cents to make but clubs are charging lots of money for these pieces of plastic

8. Just like any “scene” this one will explode in time, how do you see the future of this new “roots” movement?
Roots music has always been around and will always be around in some shape or form. There has been sort of an explosion as of lately but this is really nothing new. I hope that there will always be people who are preserving the traditional styles of music but I also hope there will always be people who will take that traditional style and put their own contemporary spin. Commercial music that is forced to us is mass-produced crap much like every other industry now a days. It takes a little more effort to seek out the good wholesome real products but the pay off from it and what you get out of it is so worth it

9. What band or record do you really like, but you are a little a shamed about?
I like a lot of off the wall stuff but I’m generally not ashamed of it. Sinead O’Connor? Bring it on. Rick Astley? Hell yeah. Hootie? I used to be able to get down until he started playing that country crap. When it comes down to it, if it makes you wanna shake your but then shake the hell out of it. One thing I hated about the punk scene is that people would give you a hard time over what you listen to. Fuck you! I listen to what I want!

10. Eating dog shit or record with Toby Keith?
How much is he paying?

http://urbanpioneersmusic.com/index.html