One of the titans of the North American summer Music Festival season is Riot Fest, and we were damn glad to see it come back strong in 2021. Especially after Lollapalooza did such bang up numbers coming back, and kept the safety methods strongto minimize the effects of the pandemic, you knew Riot Fest was going to go hard, and bring it big time. Even with the departures from the lineup of Nine Inch Nails, Faith No More, Mr. Bungle, and others, it was as stacked a lineup as the fest has ever had. If you’ve ever been to Riot Fest, Lollapalooza, Coachella or any other festival, you’ve witnessed the power of live music bringing people together. At Riot Fest 2021, we learned that even a global pandemic is no match for a community this passionate and devoted. What makes Riot Fest particularly special, though, is the integration of bands and artists from several generations, and the consequent mingling of their fans. Whether you’re twelve or sixty years old, there’s someone on the lineup for you.
Sad news to report as Rob “Bobeats” Vitale has died, apparently from COVID-19, according to posts from friends. Rob was best known as the co-founder and lead singer of NYHC band Black Train Jack, and later Nine Lives. Condolences and tributes have been pouring in from all over the Hardcore and greater Punk world. Born from the members of another classic band, Token Entry, Black Train Jack had two major albums on Roadrunner Records in the early 1990s with 1993’s No Heroes and 1994’s You’re Not Alone. BTJ was innovative and inspired many by blending old-school NYHC sounds with a brilliant melodic sensibility (vocals, vocal harmonies, and guitars) that had a huge influence on the 90s pop-punk that followed. We send our sympathies out to Rob’s family, many friends, and countless fans at this time. Continue reading
Legendary Pop Punks The Offspring will release their new album Let The Bad Times Roll on April 16 via Concord Records. The new album will be their first in 9 years, the follow-up to 2012’s Days Go By and was once again produced by Bob Rock, who also worked on the band’s last two LPs. Check out the debut single, the title track, right now! Continue reading
Whether you know him from his decade-long rap career, role as Felix in Birdbox, spot-on portrayal of Tommy Lee in The Dirt, comedian Pete Davidson’s BFF, or Megan Fox’s new beau, Machine Gun Kelly, born Colson Baker, has left footprints across the entertainment industry. Hot off a summer full of home-recorded covers and his first MTV Video Music Award, MGK takes another step in a new direction with his fifth studio album, Tickets to My Downfall (Bad Boy/Interscope), wearing his heart on his sleeve for 13 tracks (and 2 interludes) of pop-punk magic. Most fittingly, the new release was executively produced by Blink 182’s Travis Barker, who Baker first collaborated with last summer on “I Think I’m Okay,” along with Brit bud Yungblud. It’s no surprise the album sounds as if it could have been born during the early-2000’s pop-punk heyday. Though TTMD is a change of pace from MGK’s typical style, it does not fully abandon his roots, highlighting a multitude of hip-hop guests and beats, party songs, and pop anthems. In fact, he has consistently cited various rock acts as influences, so it was only a matter of time until he fully submerged himself in the genre.
I assume it’s easy to look back at the aughts and be dismissive of the entire decade particularly from the perspective of metal or punk fan. Nu-Metal was slowly being phased out as any goodwill from the previous decade had eroded and acts like Simple Plan and Good Charlotte made everyone realize that maybe the idea of Pop-Punk was a mistake. But those who kept their ear close to the ground knew better than to become jaded. Hard rock was alive and well and young bands were doing very exciting things. Young bands like Between the Buried and Me with their seminal Alaska (Victory Records 2005/Craft Recordings 2020).
Punk In Drublic Fest has announced its European tour for 2021, featuring their first announcement of bands. NOFX, Pennywise, Me First And The Gimme Gimmes, Reel Big Fish, The Vandals, Face to Face, Comeback Kid, Days N Daze, The Baboon Show. More bands TBA soon! Continue reading
Machine Gun Kelly is currently working on a Pop-Punk album due out at later date in 2020. He shared this viral video of Travis Barker of Blink-182, who is working on the album with him, jamming virtually on a cover of Paramore‘s all-time classic anthem, “Misery Business”. The viral video already has almost 2 million views in just a few days. Check out the video and follow the Soundcloud below for more MGK punk goodness! Continue reading
Actress Kristin Stewart (Twilight, The Runaways) hosted Saturday Night Live this past weekend. One of the sketches featured Stewart and castmates Pete Davidson, Kyle Mooney and Mikey Day in a parody of 1990s Pop Punk bands gone corporate, and selling out to the man. It might hit you a little too close to home if you lived this lifestyle as a fan back then.Continue reading
Long-running political Punks Anti-Flag have just dropped a new single and lyric video for the song ‘Christian Nationalist. The new single follows their 2017 full-length, American Fall, and 2019 live album, Live Vol. 2, and Anti-Flag is currently putting the final touches on a new studio album with more details t0 come soon. In their trademark style, Anti-Flag are firey progressives, but not just yelling from their soapbox, but inspiring and activating change within and without the broken systems that govern us. The song is a dire warning to “white neo-fascist supremacists” in positions of power who use oppression to maintain control over others. Watch the video and purchase the track now! Continue reading
I just love getting new albums to review, seriously, hearing new music pouring out of my earbuds exhilarates me like nothing else. I almost feel like I have stumbled into a secret treasure trove that the world has yet to experience. As I started to listen to the new Doll Skin album, Love Is Dead And We Killed Her (Hopeless Records) I began to feel the sensation of euphoria surging through every cell in my body. Seriously, the right side of my brain said to the left side of my brain, “here, hold my beer, this is all me”.Continue reading