Tuesday, November 20, 2007
Sunday, November 18, 2007
photo by JMH/405east
If the gang of Archies went to a house party, The Automatic Music Explosion would definitely be the band rockin’ out. The band, consisting of Matt, Jodie, Chris, Max and Jeff are colorful and fun, as though jumping off the pages of a comic book. But seriously, at first glance, you really don’t know what to make of The Automatic Music Explosion. Matt – the Goth/Glam rocker! Jodie – the Roller
Since the release of their Debut EP “This is!” earlier this year, The A.M.E.’s energetic live shows have been garnering word of mouth for their self-described ‘BLAST POP’ sound. Their shows? They’re a sight to behold. Every show demands mandatory participation from the crowd. Sign-waving Jodie baits the crowd into screaming and shouting with large cards telling the fans to ‘Clap Your Hands’ and yell ‘Yeah! Yeah! Yeah!’ From bassist Jeff jumping up and doing scissor kicks, vocalist Matt cursing the fans, Max the drummer posing center stage, Chris the guitarist head-banging and wind-milling his way through his solos and Roller-derby Jodie hip-shaking and hurling balloons and candy towards raised arms of the audience, The A.M.E. certainly can put on an electrifying show. Saying The A.M.E. are over-the-top would be an understatement. They’re loud and they are proud and they make no apologies for their brash, take no prisoner’s attitude.
Known for playing clubs at night and high schools during the day, The A.M.E has the knack for tapping into today’s youth - a time when all we cared about was wondering when our first kiss would be and the only responsibility we had was to our friends. The A.M.E. are not trying to change the world though their music, they just want to have fun while somebody else is trying to do it.
On vocals are both Matt and Jodie. But even though Matt shoulders most of the vocals, as the only gal in the group, Jodie proves she can rock with the rest of them. Singing and hip-shaking her way through, “C’mon C’mon” and “Looking out for Number 1,” Jodie’s teasing vocals contrasts Matt’s “I don’t give a fuck” persona. And when both clash on the mic together it’s a sight to see. Off to the side, A.M.E. guitarist (or should I say A.D.D. guitarist) Chris plays his diamond-studded guitar like there’s no tomorrow, using up every ounce of energy in “C’mon C’mon.” When the spotlight hits his guitar just right, a beacon of light shoots out towards the rock Gods as he takes center stage drawing on energy from the music thirsty crowd.
Currently, The A.M.E. are working on their debut full-length record, recording with legendary Rock & Roll Producer Mike Chapman who has worked with Blondie, The Knack and Pat Benatar. Until their new album comes out, enjoy them while you can as they play local shows all across the
Check out the rest of the photos in our pics page here . Also check out more reviews and pics on 405 East. Here’s A.M.E.’s performance of “C’mon C’mon” from that night. Check out how sick Chris is on his guitar. Thanks to 405 East for the awesome vid!
MARTIN KLINGMAN, VICTORIA CECILIA, DAVID REISS
Thursday, November 8, 2007
photo by PICKSYSTICKS
El Rey Theatre
Web: missderringer.com; myspace.com/missderringer
The Players: Liz McGrath, singer; Morgan Slade, guitar; Sylvain de Muizon, bass; Cody James, drums; Lightnin' Bill Woodcock, lead guitar.
Material: Los Angeles based Miss Derringer is fully loaded with two albums and a recent two song EP, all of which are ammunition tracks that improves with every new release. Their latest single, "Heartbreaks & Razorblades," blend shake-a-bop sounds with Goth satire that would make a mourner sway at a funeral; the lyrics are suicidal sad, but the rhythm is that of a glimmering beach sunrise. Miss Derringer has a sound that one can either hear as half-full of hope or half-empty with hopelessness, or both, depending on the perspective of the listener. This band could be categorized as 60's Motown revitalized with Rockabilly, somewhat like The Shirelles' "Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow" with a bit of country twang and endless bleeding.
Musicianship: Liz McGrath's vocals are dark and soft like hot tar, smiling sugar vocals with a knife in the gut lyrics. Supporting on guitars are Lightnin' Bill Woodcock slinging the dusty cowboy ride into the sunset and Morgan Slade delivering soft surf waves. Sylvain de Muizon on bass and Cody James on drums keep the tumbleweed tide from breaking into a catastrophe of contrasting rhythms. But Liz McGrath's vocals are the secret ingredient to blend the Los Angeles surf rock waters with the west coast cowboy desert oil.
photo by PICKSYSTICKS
Performance: Miss Derringer fills listeners with irony of death and hope, somewhat like their performance that buried their audience alive. Liz McGrath stood proper with elbows out and hands clasping, wearing a black and white striped imprisoned heart leotard with a red velvet vest and a petite doll hat to match, swinging her hips as she sung her songs of woe. Backing her vocals was the "Ghost Army" of black collar bandit cowboys with armbands expressing a tear dripping nightingale, the lone night singer. Every few songs two ladies in red satin would flank McGrath and swim dance, making it seem that if hell had a beach, Miss Derringer, McGrath as the Goth Gidget, would be the perfect band to play endless on it, in the rising dusk, for all the fallen broken hearted suicide victims. Their performance adds another depth of sweet darkness to their grim upbeat music.
Summary: This band seems to have reinvented the oldies of the 60's, when the sound was fun and somewhat whimsical and yet delivered a humble message. Miss Derringer spills a broken heart and a bit of country into the mix with a dash of rock, making listeners twist and grieve, and want to shout their pain. Miss Derringer is not typical pop, but they'll definitely shoot a bullet to your heart if you give them a shot.
(check out MORE PHOTOS from this night of Miss Derringer in our pics page at www.myspace.com/picksysticks.)
And here's a youtube clip from the show. Enjoy!