July has brought about many exciting things for yours truly in the world of music and celebration (and the occasional disappointment) but in the midst of the supernova that is summer 2012, I had my first taste of something completely different – Vans Warped Tour.
Ian Tomele grew up being exposed to the classic punk sounds of Dead Kennedys, Sex Pistols and many other influential bands. It should come as no surprise, then, that Tomele would go on to create his own band, a modern punk/rock band called Voice of Addiction.
Earlier this summer, Voice of Addiction went on a mini-tour to release their fourth album entitled Reduce, Reuse, Resist. This 13-song release contains great punk/rock music. Voice of Addiction is composed of not only singer/bassist Ian Tomele, but also guitarist/singer Jeff Walschon and drummer Andy Petty. This trio creates music that could easily categorize as “rock,” even though there are plenty of punk influences in both the music and the lyrics of their songs. The overall rock feeling that exists throughout the music creates music that still has the attitude, but also contains plenty of creativity in the songs. And the band also includes some ska influences into their sound, as well. This gives the music from Voice of Addiction’s music a lot of depth to it.
Have you ever made a spur of the moment decision and gone off on a whim, chasing a gut feeling? And don’t you just love it when this pays off? Well, I recently trucked off up to Aberdare in the valleys of South Wales on one of these whims. This particular whim was to go and check out a couple of bands from Aberdare whom I had only just come across thanks to a good friend who lives there. The bands I went to see play were The Nukes and Clay Statues, and I was so pleased to find that the journey was well worth it, as both bands played blinding sets at The Glandover Arms.
The opening band of the night was Say When!, a young indie rock band. These guys played with great enthusiasm, but I have to say that they did not really do much for me. Their style of rock just blended into the vast collection of so many other similar bands who sadly fail to stand out from this bland majority of young and enthusiastic acts.
When I texted a friend of mine to ask if she had ever heard of The City Streets she replied, “Haha, I listened to them once by accident while searching for The Streets.” I love being exposed to new acts that come all the way from the Prairies and sing about the tragedies that befall individuals in modern urban spaces, but let’s face it: we have all heard songs about drinking away your sorrows, driving around, and complaining about bourgeois tragedies. Dingy “punk rock bars” are not about “teenage war.” Read the Manifesto. Punk is supposed to be political. See the Dead Kennedys.
When F. Scott Fitzgerald coined the phrase “The Jazz Age” in the roaring twenties, he wasn’t referring to what these guys have in mind. The City Streets are a young band that vacillate freely between the genres of post-punk revival, indie, and emo without an established aesthetic. Their sound is more Vans Warped Tour than Osheaga.
One would think that recording studios would be more likely breeding grounds for competition rather than collaboration. However, when it comes to West London’s Limozine, it all started in Coventry at the Cabin Recording Studios where Dean (Vocals) and Johnny Zero (Guitar) met through a mutual friend.
It is also not often true that drinking brings about brilliant ideas, but Limozine, once again, makes the exception. After some late night drinking Dean and Johnny discovered their shared passion and respect for acts like The Cramps, ACDC, The Stooges and The Ramones. Using their idols for inspiration they began Limozine in the effort to bring about their own version of a punk rock album.
Writing their 11-track debut, Car Crash Casino, in 2005 and recording and mixing the album in eight days, it wasn’t until 2007 that they saw it’s official release. A year later, Johnny’s close friends, Tim (Drums) and Karl (Bass), saw Limozine live and were so gripped by the project they couldn’t help getting in on the action. And so, the two-piece doubled and today’s Limozine was born.