Category Archives: pop rock

New music – THE DIVINE COMEDY, SCOTT STAPP, GLORYHAMMER

Great to have new music from the Divine Comedy and ‘Queuejumper‘ is a catchy little ditty that bodes well for the upcoming double album ‘Office Politics’ due on June 7.

Creed vocalist Scott Stapp returns with a new song – an enjoyable piece of modern rock. Or as the PR blurb says…

“Purpose For Pain” is an auto-biographical rush of memories, from abuse, to escape, and going from bad to worse before finding the beauty in life’s hard-learned lessons. The single is the first from Stapp’s upcoming album “The Space Between The Shadows”, out in July 2019 on Napalm Records.

Also some bonkers space power metal from Gloryhammer, who have a new album, also released on Napalm Records, called ‘Legends From Beyond The Galactic Terrorvortex’ which is out on May 31.

Pete Lincoln’s statement…

Pete’s farewell to Sweet

Things change. Life goes on. After thirteen great years which have flown past in the blink of an eye, the Sweet’s ‘Still Got The Rock’ tour in May will be my last with this fantastic band.

It’s been a fascinating ride filled with music, laughter and great memories. I have met many wonderful friends and fans along the way, and will always value my time spent fronting The Sweet.

Of course I’m not retiring and will continue my involvement with FRONTM3N and solo projects. The time is simply right for us all to make this change.

I wish Andy, Bruce and Tony the very best for the future continuation of this most iconic of bands, and thank them for their friendship and cameraderie on the road. I would also like to take this opportunity to wish my mate Paul Manzi well in his new role – I know he’ll do a marvellous job.

We are, and will remain, firm friends and I’m sure I’ll be making a return appearance from time to time, so this is by no means a forever goodbye!

Pete

Music news – CoCo and the Butterfields new video for their latest single ‘Puppets‘

CoCo and the Butterfields have shared the video for their latest single, ‘Puppets‘, the second track to be taken from their upcoming EP Monsters, out this Spring.

Featuring an inspiring and playful narrative, the video sees a man’s frustration gradually build to unbearable levels before breaking away from the restraints of mundane day-to-day life, while the track builds through anthemic choral elements and stirring instrumentation.

The track is the second to be taken from their upcoming EP, Monsters, following the release of ‘Animals‘ in January. The EP was previously released as an acoustic collection of tracks and has now been re-recorded as a fully orchestrated representation of the band’s creative evolution since their conception six years ago.

Following a nationwide tour supporting Blue October in February, the band will be performing extensively throughout the summer, including two headline shows in Margate and Cambridge this month, a slew of festivals and their own UK headline tour, starting in October.

The band have built a strong reputation as a formidable live act, having been a staple of the touring circuit for a number of years, with past performances including festival slots at Glastonbury, Isle Of Wight and Bestival, and support slots for the likes of Bastille, King Charles, Scouting For Girls and Wheatus.

With a solid foundation of eclectic influence, live presence and masterly songwriting, 2019 looks set to be the year that catapults the band to new heights.

2019 LIVE DATES 
April
12th – Margate, Theatre Royal
13th – Cambridge, Junction

May
18th – Songs From The Shed Festival, Clevedon
25th – Ireby Festival, Cumbria

June
22nd – Leweston Festival, Dorset

July
20th – Chagstock Festival, Devon
28th – Kendal Calling, Cumbria

August
2nd – Underneath The Stars Festival, Yorkshire
3rd – Belladrum Tartan Heart Festival, Inverness
16th-18th – Twisted Village Festival, Winchester

September
6th-18th – The Long Road Festival, Lutterworth

October (UK Headline Tour)
3rd – London, Islington Assembly Hall
4th – Oxford, O2 Academy
5th – Nottingham, The Bodega Social Club
6th – Birmingham, O2 Academy 3
9th – Southampton, The 1865
10th – Brighton, The Hope & Ruin
11th – Honiton, The Beehive
16th – Norwich, Open
17th – Sheffield, O2 Academy 2
18th – Manchester, Gullivers
19th – Glasgow, The Hug and Pint

November
1st – Cardiff, Clwb Ifor Bach
2nd – Bristol, Thekla
3rd – Plymouth, The Junction

Tickets are available from https://cocoandthebutterfields.com/

Incoming music – BOURGEOIS TAGG, THE DARKNESS, JOURNEY, BECKY MILLS

Two recent eBay bargains… first up the 2015 album from the Darkness ‘Last Of Our Kind’. It was the only album to feature drummer Emily Dolan Davies, who was replaced by Rufus Taylor (son of Queen drummer Roger Taylor). It made the UK album charts no.12 – topping the Up rock chart –  and US charts no.125. Not bad at all, based on the loose concept of a Viking invasion of East Anglia it is suitably OTT. Not as strong as their classic debut album, but an album worth owning.

Had this one on cassette and now picked up a CD copy of ‘Yoyo’ by Bourgeois Tagg. This was the second album (released in 1987) by the band formed by Brent Thomas Bourgeois and Larry Tagg. If like me you love a bit of hi-tech 80’s synth pop rock – like the Police jamming with Go West – it is an album worth investigating further. The album made the US charts at no.38

In the review pile is Becky Mills, who has a new album ‘Tall Tales and Home Truths’ out on April 26. Eleven songs written by her and it is a wonderful folk album, highly recommended. Journey’s new double CDD/DVD package recorded at Tokyo’s Budokan in 2017 when the band performed the ‘Escape’ and ‘Frontiers’ albums in their entirety. Enjoying the CDs and will set aside a couple of hours to watch the concert DVD.

Quick Qs with JOSH TAERK

I have long been a fan and supporter of the music of Josh Taerk who has a new single, ‘Beautiful Tragedy’ out now and it is gaining traction on the US airplay charts. You can watch the video below and I asked Josh a few questions about the video, single release and what else he has planned musically for 2019.

You have a novel new video out for ‘Beautiful Tragedy’ which was directed by yourself and Josh Lockhart. How did you come up with the idea for the video? It features a clever use of various online apps like the iTunes playlist, the Windows new mail message etc.

I wanted to do something different with this video and wanted to steer away from the traditional performance video. I came up with the idea sitting at my computer thinking about my lov /hate relationship with the applications you mentioned above. I thought, “this could make a hilarious video!”

This song is the first one you have released to US pop radio. It seems to take some time to climb up the Billboard radio charts. How do you as an artist go about getting more airplay from radio stations? Does it increase naturally as other radio stations, who may not have heard of your song, add it to their playlists as they see the song rising up the charts?

Like anything in the music business it’s about working towards those opportunities. It’s been amazing to see how people have been gravitating towards the song and seeing more stations add the song every week. For me, it’s all about taking what opportunities you have and running with them. As the song gets added to more playlists, I make sure I spread the word, letting my fans know what’s going on, and they’ve been reaching out to their local stations, requesting the song, and spreading the word on social media.    

In these days of online radio and streaming, is the traditional radio station format still popular in the US and Canada?

I feel like it’s all important. My goal with my music is to reach as many people as I can with my stories. The audience that listens to Top 40 Radio is going to be a different group than the people that search for music on Apple Music, Spotify, etc. 

How was 2018 for you? You toured the UK again and have you seen a rise in interest in your music both here in the UK and your native Canada?

2018 was brilliant! After my last group of tour dates in the U.K. I toured through New York state at the end of October, and Michigan, Illinois, and Indiana in November finishing things off in Ohio. I then ended the year in Colorado playing music with the guys at D’Angelico Guitars.

It’s been amazing seeing the response to the new music and my live shows. It’s been brilliant seeing all of my long-time fans embracing the music and seeing all of the people that are taking my songs into their lives for the first time. I am really grateful for all the support.

What have you got planned musically for the rest of 2019?

We are in the middle of the U.S. Top 40 Radio campaign and as of February 25th the song has already climbed the charts to #37 on the Mediabase Top 40 Pop Activator Chart and #42 on the BDS/Billboard Top 40 Pop Indicator Chart. I’m really excited to see what happens with the song moving forward. I’m also playing Canadian Tour dates this month and then heading back to the US, to Indiana and Michigan in April for shows as well.   

Message for your fans…

Thank you for being on this journey with me. Thank you for streaming my songs, watching the videos, coming out to the shows, and requesting to hear my songs on the radio. I love you all.

www.joshtaerk.com

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Music news – new single from THE HOLD STEADY

UPCOMING LIVE SCHEDULE INCLUDES SOLD OUT SHOWS IN LONDON, BOSTON, AND HAMDEN, CT

The Last Time That She Talked To Me

The Hold Steady are releasing their first new song of 2019. “The Last Time She Talked To Me” arrives at all DSPs and streaming services via Frenchkiss Records on Friday, March 8. The song is now available exclusively at The Hold Steady’s Bandcamp page HERE. Fans can download the single by donating to The K + L Guardian Foundation, a fund set up to benefit the children of Unified Scene founder “jersey” Mike Van Jura, who died in November 2012.

Recorded at Isokon Studios in Woodstock, NY, with producer Josh Kaufman and engineer D. James Goodwin, “The Last Time She Talked To Me” is the ninth in an amazing series of THS single releases over the past 15 months, a string that includes “Confusion in the Marketplace” b/w “T-Shirt Tux,” “The Stove & The Toaster” b/w “Star 18,” “Eureka” b/w “Esther,” and “Entitlement Crew” b/w “A Snake In The Shower.” Additional performers include Stuart Bogie and Dave Nelson on horns and Annie Nero on backup vocals. All of the aforementioned singles are available now at all DSPs and streaming services as well as the official Hold Steady Bandcamp HERE.

The Hold Steady are visiting London this week for “THE WEEKENDER,” a sold out three-day concert event that will see the NYC-based band taking the stage at London’s Electric Ballroom on Friday, March 8 and Saturday, March 9, followed by a limited capacity third show at Oslo, in Hackney, London on Sunday, March 10. In addition, an exclusive screening of The Hold Steady’s acclaimed 2009 documentary, A Positive Rage, will be held the afternoon of Sunday, March 10 at the Picturehouse cinema in Hackney.

The Hold Steady will then return to North America for a number of spring dates, beginning Thursday, May 16 at Jersey City, NJ’s intimate White Eagle Hall – limited tickets remain available HERE. That same weekend will also see the band joining Frank Turner at his sold out LOST EVENINGS III festival, set for Boston, MA’s House of Blues on Friday, May 17. The weekend wraps up in Hamden, CT with a sold out show at Space Ballroom on Saturday, May 18.  For complete details and ticket information, please visit www.theholdsteady.net/#shows.

The Hold Steady is: Bobby Drake (drums), Craig Finn (vocals), Tad Kubler (guitar, vocals), Franz Nicolay (keyboards), Galen Polivka (bass), and Steve Selvidge (guitar, vocals).

theholdsteady.net

Incoming music…MASSIVE WAGONS, BASTILLE & 100 HITS SOFT ROCK

Thought I’d ramble on a bit about music I have picked up in CD format (I am very lucky to get new music/releases as part of the Get Ready To Rock! team). I picked up a copy of Massive Wagons’ ‘Full Nelson’ album (which won the GRTR! Readers Album of the Year poll). Having seen them live (go see them live they are excellent) and heard a few songs via Spotify the album is barnstormer. Plenty of no frills hard rock and as GRTR! Live Ed Dave Wilson wiselyt noted they could be the new Slade, not so much in their sound but their appeal to wide audience and love of a good melodic riff.

A recent charity shop bargain was Bastille’s ‘Bad Blood’, bit slow on catching-up on this one as it came out six years ago but hey we get there. Bastille have a knack, like Imagine Dragons, of mixing catchy melodies backed by varied percussion and backing vocal arrangements. Pop prog anyone?! One my children like as well, so a win win.

Last one for now is 100 Hits – The Best Soft Rock Album. Now if you frequent your local Sainsburys you will see a never ending array of 100 Hits, Now and various eras compilations. Despite CD sales falling overall, the rise of compilation CD sales seems to march onwards. Many music fans regard these as they would tribute bands, ones to be avoided, however this soft rock one has a good selection with the usual staples of REO Speedwagon, Survivor, Air Supply plus some more modern choices from the Calling, Train and the Script. It does lose a point for Jennifer Rush though! Shame you can’t scrub a song of an CD. All in all not bad for under a fiver for five CDs.