Beastie Boys Released “Ill Communication” Twenty-Five Years Ago

Beastie Boys were on fo the biggest, most successful groups in the work in the early 1990s when they made Ill Communication (Capitol/Grand Royale), released twenty-five years ago today. Prolific, putting out a new album every 2-3 years, the band was focused on never repeating themselves, and constantly improving. It would have been very easy for them to just keep remaking Licensed To Ill (Def Jam) over and over and that would have been enough for many bands. But Ad-Rock, Mike D, and MCA (RIP Adam Yauch) kept on changing and evolving. As they had on the previous few albums, they played all the instruments, and played them incredibly well on every track, across multiple genes. They had genius guest stars and collaborators (Q-Tip, Biz Markie, Amery Smith of Suicidal Tendencies, Money Mark, Bobo from Cypress Hill) and put the music first, before everything. Even the production on Ill Communication is incredible, all respect due to the B-E-A-S-T-I-E’s and their frequent partner at this time, Mario Caldato (“Mario C”). Continue reading

Riot Fest 2017 – Chicago, IL

Nine Inch Nails at Riot Fest 2017, by Omar Cordy/OJC PICS

Riot Fest was started a few years back in the grand spirit of the old school one-off festivals of lore. It was intended to be special from the get-go and they have done a reasonable job of sandwiching themselves into a busy summer of Lollapalooza, Chicago Open Air, and many other destination festival shows. Having a mix of alternative rock, metal, Hip-Hop, indie rock, and more has helped carve out its own niche, and between special performances, varied food and beer options, late-night after parties, and basically the cool factor Chicago offers as one of the best cities in America, it’s no wonder fans flocked to the event from all over the world. Continue reading