Canadian Alessia Cara made her highly anticipated Los Angeles debut at The Troubadour. Signed to Def Jam records based on her Soundcloud page that included covers of Lorde, The Neighbourhood, Sam Smith and Justin Bieber, this show marked Alessia's first headlining gig.


Ahead of their June 9th release of their upcoming album Wild Nights, UK's PINS have released their new single "Young Girls." Also, they just announced their U.S. summer toiur which kicks off June 13rh in New York.


Zella Day has released her debut album Kicker and she celebrated with a sold out show at LA's famed Troubadour last week.


Last Saturday, over 150 bands made their journey to downtown Pasadena to take part in Make Music Pasadena (MMP), billed as the largest free, all-day music festival on the West Coast.


Winter's new album Supreme Blue Dream is the ideal soundtrack to your summer..

Monday, July 29, 2013


Balancing act: Kitten's Chloe Chaidez @ SXSW.
photo by picksysticks
LA's hottest band at the moment, KITTEN, has already shared the stage with today's musical powerhouses such as Paramore, No Doubt, Joy Formidable and Macklemore and Ryan Lewis.  It's been a heck of a year so far.  Now,  they're set to release their debut album Like a Stranger next month and they're about to head out on tour with another rising star - Charli XCX.  But before that, KITTEN are headlining their own show August 2nd at The Troubadour.  

Recently, they visited the offices of Live Nation Labs to perform their recent hit "Cut It Out."  Check it out below!

Live from Live Nation Labs presents Kitten "Cut It Out" from the Bose lounge.

Saturday, July 27, 2013


Skylar Grey,  performing to a packed house for her record release party for Don't Look Down at The Bootleg Theater this past Thursday (July 25th).  

Bootleg Theater Setlist: Intro / Back From the Dead / C'Mon Let Me Ride / Dance Without You / Final Warning / Only Thing I Hear / Sushine / White Suburban / Coming Home, Doctor, Words (Medley) / Love The Way You Lie / Wear Me Out / Pulse / Shit Man / Glow in the Dark / Religion / Invisible (Encore)
Skylar Grey
Skylar GreySkylar Grey
Skylar Grey
Skylar GreySkylar Grey
Skylar Grey

Thursday, July 25, 2013


Check out this beautiful song from Birdy.   It's called "Wings" and it's the first single off her new album Fire Within which will be released in September.  

You can pre-order 'Fire Within' now:
Super Deluxe:

Wednesday, July 24, 2013


Kelly Ogden and Luis Cabezas of The Dollyrots
Kelly Ogden of The Dollyrots announces she's pregnant!
photo by picksysticks
Congratulations are in order!! Today, during a scheduled video chat via Shindig, The Dollyrots' Luis Cabezas and Kelly Ogden announced through song that they were expecting their first child together.  During the video chat which began at 3 pm West Coast time, Kelly and Luis sang "We're having a baby!" and revealed that they were having a baby boy.  "We're having a little Dollyrot!" Kelly announced.

This explains last month's announcement that the group, together since 2001, would cease touring for the rest of 2013 to work on their new record. They played their last gigs early this month at the Troubadour and Molly Malones. Who would've guessed that Kelly was pregnant!? That probably explains  one of their last gigs at Molly Malones in which they played an acoustic set.

 "I have boobs for the first time in my life," Kelly gushed.  "That's one bonus."

During the video chat, fans asked a variety of questions ranging from possible baby name (They hadn't decided yet), when they were touring the UK again (haven't decided) and when there new record would be finished (Luis said they record will be completed, hopefully before Kelly gives birth).


We Are / She Is
Merilou Salazar and Jess Meehan of We Are/She Is performs at Boardner's.
photo by picksysticks
We Are / She Is, my newest favorite band just released their new lyric video for "And the World" and it's a glittery, pop explosion that I've come to love from this Los Angeles band consisting of Merilou Salazar, Jessie Meehan and Jake Fight.  

The song along with the video is a cautionary tale of the dangers of progress at the expense of enjoying life as Merilou sings, "...stand up to our love's progression then take it back to recreation." 

The video imposes shots, side by side, of lush parks and children playing in wide open spaces alongside images of daily progress such as traffic congestion and city development.  When she sings, "Dad's back from the hide and seek games. he's shooting but he's missing and he barely knows my name," it's as though We Are/She Is, with the layering of their feel good melodies, are trying to remind us to stop and smell the roses, to appreciate what we all take for granted instead of being too consumed with progress.  

"And the World" lyric video by We Are/She Is

We recently saw them perform and their set, which consisted of mostly singing songs off their new EP New Game, echoes flashbacks of  yester-years - romanticized pop and dance music that reminds us of simpler times of carefree hangouts with friends during warm summer nights, doing nothing but still having the time of your lives hoping this time would never end.  

Be sure to check We Are / She Is when they perform next month at Los Globos on August 13th and Tribal Cafe on August 23rd.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013


Tim De Pala, Gugut Salgado, Kimi Encarnacion and Jay Jay Encarnacion of Moonpools and Caterpillars
photo Vanessa Mougenot
It was 1995 when Lucky Dumpling was released by the Glendale-based foursome, consisting of Kimi Ward Encarnacion, Jay Jay Encarnacion, Gugut Salgado and Tim De Pala, making them one of the most successful bands of Philippine ancestry.  Discovered by accident, it's said that an A&R rep. went to the Whiskey A Go-Go to watch a band perform, only to be blown away by the opening band - Moonpools and Caterpillars who were were signed to a record deal soon after. 

Riding high on the bands popularity, their feel good, pop-alternative songs were  featured on commercials like Volkswagen and films like The Baby-Sitters Club and even made a cameo in Disney's Wish Upon A Star. (cool trivia: Wish Upon a Star was Katherine Heigl's feature film debut)

Unfortunately, when Lucky Dumpling was released, it seemed as though Moonpools and Caterpillars became lost in an industry that was still recovering from the hangover of the ‘90s grunge scene.  The word "alternative" became "mainstream" and Moonpools had trouble finding a place at the big kids' table that already included women-fronted powerhouses The Breeders, Belly, The Cranberries, No Doubt and 10,000 Maniacs.  

But still, fans eventually found Lucky Dumpling, drawn to spark plug of a lead singer, Kimi, and their infectious and sun-kissed melodies which made you want to dance like nobody was watching.   From the sweet, innocence of "Heaven" and "Soon" to the jubilation and contagious sounds of "Hear" and "Colossal Youth," listening to Moonpools and Caterpillars today feels like a reunion of long, lost friends greeting you with open arms and picking up your conversation as though they had never left.    

Moonpools and Caterpillars
Moonpools and Caterpillars band promo pic, 1995
Things were looking up for the band.  They began working on their follow up album 12 Songs and Kimi and Jay Jay were expecting their first child.  But according to Kimi, when their label found out, that's when, without any explanation, their contract was unexpectedly terminated.  Althought 12 Songs was eventually released, Moonpools and Caterpillars found themselves without a label and bleak future as a band.

When Moonpools and Caterpillars surprisingly quit in 1998 it was an unexpected blow, not just for the millions of fans who grew to love their music, but it was also an unexpected blow for members of Moonpools and Caterpillars themselves.

"It was the last thing we expected.  Things went from high momentum getting ready to make this record to being dropped with no explanation.. .It was all quite a blow!" Kimi says. "Looking back it was the best thing that could have happened to me.  When I got over the sting, and believe me, that took a LONG time, a few years, I jumped into being a mother to these 2 boys and have never had a single regret." 

But while the sting of being dropped by their label admittedly took awhile to get over, the members of Moonpools and Caterpillars didn't wallow in defeat.  And even though they moved on with their lives, the group were never far from each other and their fans. 

"We never stopped playing music, being the best of friends and never ever stopped talking about the great times as Moonpools and Caterpillars.  We stayed in touch with fans over the internet.  It was always a teat getting letters and emails hearing their stories.  Even though things didn't go quite as planned, it's perfect, life has been good for everyone!"
Moonpools and Caterpillars
Moonpools and Caterpillars (Gugut Salgado, Jay Jay Encarnacion, Kimi Encarnacion and  Tim De Pala)
photo Vanessa Mougenot
Of the four, Tim now lives in the Bay Area with his family, working in the entertainment industry where he worked on such films like Hellboy and Men In Black II while the rest still live in Orange County. Kimi and Jay, having two teenage kids together have spent time traveling the world.  Kimi currently writes for her lifestyle blog CaliforniaPixie and is starting her own clothing line while Jay Jay invested in real estate.  Gugut, now married, went back to engineering and is now a partner at a small consulting firm while also sitting on the San Clemente Coastal Advisory Commission.  

pic via Facebook/MoonpoolsandCaterpillars
Now, after 15 years since they played their last show, Moonpools and Caterpillars are dusting off their musical instruments and reuniting for a very special cause - Ethiopia Health Aid, a non-profit organization dedicated to improving the health and quality of life in rural Ethiopia through sustainable initiatives.  

The show, being held this Saturday (July 27th) at David Henry Hwang Theater in Downtown Los Angeles quickly sold out with donations ranging from $75-$100; proceeds that will help bring medical supplies and equipment as well as educational resources to Ethiopia's poorest areas. 

Recently, Kimi and Gugut took time out of their busy practice schedule to answer a few questions from Picksysticks about life after Moonpools and Caterpillars, their opinions on today's music, re-learning lyrics and why, after so many years, they decided to reunite for one special charity.

First off, thanks for doing this interview and answering some questions.  Tell us about this charity, Ethiopia Health Aid.
Kimi: Gugut's sister was already working with Ethiopia Health Aid (EHA) and had gone with them to Ethiopia so it was already part of the family.  This group of volunteers, mainly doctors, go over to a small village they've taken under their wing and perform much needed reconstructive surgeries.  People there don't have emergency medical care like we do.  Many are maimed and scarred in accidents and fires. Injuries that we tend to take the treatment for granted leave them with life long difficulties and contribute to social barriers.  It's quite a miracle that doctors give up their time and resources to travel the globe to offer their services.  EHA also has started a high school offering an education we also take for granted that is a rare gem for these kids!  The money we've raised for this Moonpools show is going to help ship 4 donated ambulances to the village.  With their arrival, life will never be the same.  (Read more about EHA right HERE.)

Who's idea was it to reunite after so many years?

Gugut: [My] wife...was so sick of hearing us talk about the Moonpool glory days and talk about playing instead of actually just getting up there and playing.
Kimi: We talked about for years.  Seriously, years.  We booked a [Whisky A Go-Go] show last year but cancelled it.  Gugut's wife went to this awesome seminar called Landmark and needed a community project.  She had heard us talk and talk all these years and decided to put an end to it and make this he big event!!!  Having the proceeds of the show go to a great organization made all the difference for us. We were all in!!! Pretty, cool, huh?? 
Gugut: They really make a difference in people's lives and we couldn't pass up  an opportunity to be a part of that. 

What can we expect from your show on July 27th? 

Gugut: Food, Fun, Friends, Family and good music.  Same as always.
Kimi: Ha!  Expect nothing but an adventure!!  It isn't like a normal show.  The event kicks off at 3:30 with an hour long social gathering.  Food and chatting.  The band will all be there mixing it up with everyone.  We are gonna rock for an hour then more hanging out afterward.  It's going to be a blast!!!!  

Moonpools and Caterpillars performing in Albuquerque, New Mexico in 1995.
photo via Facebook/MoonpoolsandCaterpillars
Are you singing songs from both your albums, Lucky Dumplings & 12 songs?

Kimi: YES!  We are playing a set packed with favorites from both albums.

And are you nervous about playing after so many years?

Gugut: it should be.
Kimi: I was until we practiced a month ago and it all came back!!!  And now that I have an awesome dress all ready to go, I'm totally in!!!  Still working on remembering all the lyrics but I never knew them all in the first place, right??  The show is gonna be great!!!

How’s practice been going after years of not playing and what was it like the very first time you guys met up and started playing your songs together again?

Gugut: Like riding a bike...little shaky in the beginning, but pure bliss once you start cruising.
Kimi: Playing all together again feels exactly like it did.  NOTHING's changed!!!  The boys are my favorite people!!  When we're all together, that energy fills up the room, we crank up the amps and it's like time has stood still!  We all get chills!

Moonpools and Caterpillars (Jay, Tim, Kimi & Gugut)
photo via facebook
Did you have to re-learn playing the songs?

Kimi: Ha, ya.  I have a tenancy to cut everything short.  Man, we had some long endings on those songs.  We loved to rock everything out.  It's going to sound just like that at the show!!!  We are READY!!!

Did you miss performing and playing? What did you miss?

Gugut: Yes. Being together.
Kimi: The highlight of Moonpools for me were the fans!!  Fans that turned into friends.  We looked forward to seeing everyone when we toured.  We'd get to a city and know people already.  It also kept our huge group of friends together.  We still have an annual Christmas party that's been going on for over 20 years.  We were all teenagers or in college when it started.  The band was a big part of that bond.  Of course, I LOVE performing!  I miss that like crazy!!!!  Working a crowd is one of the best things on the planet!!  Especially in those little towns where they didn't know what to expect from us.  I gladly dove into that challenge each night.  It was such a rush for me!!!!

Moonpools and CaterpillarsKimi and Jay Jay Encarnacion of Moonpools and Caterpillars
Moonpools and Caterpillars practicing for their reunion show, first time since 1998.
photos via Facebook

Do you still encounter fans on the street recognizing you? 

Kimi: Sometimes.  Here's a couple of my fave stories. Me and Jay and kids were headed to Oaxaca, Mexico a few years ago and the girl checking passports in security at LAX said, "Are you in a movie?"  She recognized me from the movie "Wish Upon A Star".  She said, "I LOVE you guys!!!!"  Then she whipped out an autograph book and had us sign it!  Obviously we're no big deal to our kids.  They were baffled by the experience. Pretty sure me and Jay Jay were bumped up a notch in their eyes that day!

Do your children listen to your music?

Kimi: I was driving them to school one day and "Summertime" came on the radio.  They thought it was the coolest thing to ever happen.  They've both told me that after hearing us rehearse so much these past couple months, they have a lot of respect for us as musicians.  They're really getting into the songs!!

I listen to your songs all the time and they don't feel dated, like they can be played on the radio today. Why do you think your music has stood the test of time? 

Gugut: Wow...that's quite a compliment.  I think its because whatever song we wrote, when we put it out there, we really liked it...100%.  We never put anything out there we didn't feel good about.
Kimi: Our 16 year old said the same thing.  He thinks we should re release everything!  You know what?  We weren't trying to sound like anyone else.  Maybe that's why?!  When we started playing live, we were sandwiched on stage in-between late '80s hair bands  Loads of spandex and tons of hairspray.  There we were in our Joy Division t-shirts and my girly dresses. We weren't trying to fit in, we were all about the fun!!!

Moonpools and Caterpillars (Hollywood Hills, 1994)
photo by Lena Watanabe
How old are your kids now and are they interested in playing in a band themselves?

Kimi: Tim has a 3 year old.  My boys are 14 and 16.  The younger one sings.  He has a great voice!  He loves to program digital music, too. The 16 year old can pick up most anything and play it.  He's got a real talent.  I find him in the studio programming and playing Postal Service and Daft Punk songs.  I would love for them to experience what we have...and maybe even bigger!!

What do you guys think of today's music?

Gugut: Some good some not so good.  The '80s stuff is really cool.  Maybe that's why Moonpools sounds not so dated.
Kimi: I'm still the same music snob I've always been.  I have my new favorites.  Hot Chip, Grizzly Bear, Phoenix, Neon Indian, Little Comets, Empire of the Sun, The National, IO Echo, Local Natives are a few that come to mind right off.  I am loving the new Daft Punk record.  Doin' it Right sounds explosive on our speakers! Shakes the house down. I think it's in my top fave group of all time songs. Ha, right up there with I'm burnin for you by Blue Oyster Cult!  Of course, then I've been listening to The Smiths consistently since the mid 80s.  I'm a junkie!!

Have you guys wrote any new songs and can we expect a new Moonpools and Caterpillars album? What can we expect from Moonpools and Caterpillars in the future?

Gugut: Stay tuned.  It may depend on how Saturday goes.
Kimi: We haven't written anything new as a band.  The thing we're excited about is that we own all our songs again.  We can re record them and do whatever we want.  We have some ideas.

I'm sure you guys have been hearing from fans all these years, wanting you guys to tour again and release new music. How did that make you feel?

Gugut: Good.  Grateful.  Humbled.
Kimi: That is my fave thing about social media.  That fans have easy access to us.  I have LOVED all the notes I've received over the years.  I'm sentimental so I eat it up.  LOVE it!

Moonpools and Caterpillars
Moonpools and Caterpillars (Tim De Pala, Jay Jay & Kimi Encarnacion and Gugut Salgado)
photo Vanessa Mougenot
After Ethiopia Health Aid Benefit concert, can we expect more shows? Possibly a comeback tour?

Kimi: This is it for now.  There are some other ideas in the works...stay tuned!
Gugut: Possibly a comeback tour?  Ummmm.....

Lastly, do you have a message to your fans who have been loyal for all these years? 

Kimi: YES!   Knowing we made a difference in your lives in little ways has been so rewarding. Our journey with Moonpools has always been about relationships.  That's why we did it.  Our goal was never to be rock stars.  We did it cuz we loved playing together!  It was fun and to know that some of it spread into your lives is icing on the cake!!!  THANKS for every minute of it!!
Gugut: "If you ain't got a car...then stay far".  [lyric from "Buick"]
Kimi: Nobody's ever really heard why we stopped playing.  I am completely sincere when I say I've had no regrets.  That's why this show is so awesome....I didn't think we'd experience it again.  I've had such a great time raising my little family, I didn't think I wanted it anymore.  So this concert is super unexpected and quite a gift!!!  It's as exciting as Christmas eve when I was a kid!!!! 

Moonpools and Caterpillars reunite for a special sold-out performance this Saturday at David Henry Hwang Theater to benefit Ethiopia Health Aid. The all ages show begins at 3:30pm and will include a reception with the band and refreshments.  

Monday, July 22, 2013


Paramore's Hayley Williams

Today, Paramore announced they'll be headed out on their North American tour which launches on October 15th in Seattle.  The 27-date tour, dubbed "The Self-Titled Tour" is in support of their new album which debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart back in April; their first.  Metric and Hellogoodbye will be supporting them on the tour.  Tickets go on sale to the general public this Friday (July 26th).  Southern California will get to Paramore when they perform October 19th at Anaheim's Honda Center and then in San Diego on October 23rd. 

OCT 15 SEATTLE, WA @ Key Arena
OCT 18 SAN JOSE, CA @ HP Pavilion
OCT 19 ANAHEIM, CA @ Honda Center
OCT 22 FRESNO, CA @ Save Mart Center
OCT 23 SAN DIEGO, CA @ Viejas Arena
OCT 26 DALLAS, TX @ Grand Prairie Verizon Theatre
OCT 27 HOUSTON, TX @ Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion
OCT 29 KANSAS CITY, MO @ Independence Events Center
OCT 30 ST. LOUIS, MO @ Fabulous Fox Theater
NOV 01 AUSTIN, TX @ Austin360 Amphitheater
NOV 05 ORLANDO, FL @ UCF Convocation Center
NOV 08 PHILADELPHIA, PA @ Susquehanna Bank Center
NOV 09 FAIRFAX, VA @ Patriot Center
NOV 11 BETHLEHEM, PA @ Sands Bethlehem Event Center
NOV 13 NEW YORK, NY @ Madison Square Garden
NOV 15 BOSTON, MA @ DCU Center
NOV 17 UNCASVILLE, CT @ Mohegan Sun Arena
NOV 18 MONTREAL, QU @ Bell Centre *
NOV 20 TORONTO, ON @ Theatre at Air Canada Centre *
NOV 21 DETROIT, MI @ The Palace Of Auburn Hills
NOV 23 MINNEAPOLIS, MN @ Roy Wilkins Auditorium
NOV 24 CHICAGO, IL @ UIC Pavilion
NOV 26 NASHVILLE, TN @ Bridgestone Arena
NOV 27 ATLANTA, GA @ The Arena at Gwinnett Center

* Without Metric. On-sale information to be announced.

Saturday, July 20, 2013


The Material
The Material are (L-R): Roi Elam (guitar), Jordan Meckley (bass), Colleen D'Agostino (vocals), Kevin PIntado (drums) and Jon Moreaux (guitar)
photos by picksysticks 
The Material, from Southern California, were one of the highlights at this year's Vans Warped Tour in Pomona last month beating out thousands of bands to get a spot on the Ernie Ball stage.  So when they performed at The Roxy last month, I had to check them out again. 

Their electric performance I remembered at Warped Tour was magnified tenfold under the lights of the famed Roxy on Sunset, inside a darkened theater where their songs were meant to be heard not outside under the palm trees where their power-rock sounds could hitch a ride and float away on top soft, billowy clouds.  It was meant for darkened and sweaty rooms, laser cut by spotlights of every color; caged inside with nowhere to go but through everyone in the room. 
The Material's  Colleen D'Agostino
Colleen D'Agostino of The Material
photo by picksysticks
The Material, consisting of lead singer  Colleen D'Agostino (Vocals), Jon Moreaux (Guitar), Roi Elam (Guitar), Kevin Pintado (Drums) and Jordan Meckley (Bass) have recently released Everything I Want To Say, a non-stop attack on all the senses and with Colleen's rose-petalled vocals lined with the sharp-thorned guitars and precise drumming, their set this night was a sweet, sonic balance that draws you into their beautifully arranged melodies, but carefully warns you  not to step too close to the dangers of the  cliff's edge.  

The Material's Jon Moreaux and Colleen D'Agostino
The Material's Jon Moreaux and Colleen D'Agostino
They burst onto the stage with "Born to Make a Sound,” a song which could be very well their  mantra as a band.  "Take control, you know it's all in your hands...I won't give up, even when I'm falling down, I’m striving up to fight back," Colleen opens their set singing before defiantly proclaiming "I know I was born, born to make a sound." 

In fact, all their songs follow themes of overcoming obstacles in pursuit of your dreams.  From "Running Away's,"  "I just realize this world's not gonna wait for me," to  "...remember when you said that I will never fly, you clipped my wings but watch we try," in "Tonight I'm Letting Go,” The Material's powerful and raw lyrics echoes a band that want to prove they're up for the challenge and that nothing is going to stop them from achieving their goals. 

But not everything is a fight and struggle, proved by their power-ballads "Let You Down" off 2011's What We Are and  "Bottles," one that drips with sensual energy, swelling with a sense of urgency at the darkness of someone in need and the help offered to live for another day.  

They ended with "Life Vest" an arena-ready, rock anthem that makes you forget you’re watching The Material in the 500 capacity venue and not a stadium like The Staples Center which holds thousands.  
The Material
The Material are currently on tour supporting their new album "Everything I Want To Say."
photos by picksysticks
The darlings of the indie music scene, The Material has found themselves on many influential lists like Purevolume's Top 20 Unsigned Bands and have been featured in Alternative Press Magazine, MTV, Music Connection and MF Magazine.  And with their latest album Everything I Want to Say released in April, 2013 is looking to be a breakout year for this So-Cal band.

The Material are currently on tour with Red Jumpsuit Apparatus for their August dates, returning to Southern California with shows at Pomona's Glass House on August 17th and then the next day where they return to the scene of the crime at The Roxy.

You can purchase the album on iTunes here:
"Life Vest" official music video by The Material

Friday, July 19, 2013



Chicago's breakout EDM trio, Krewella, is set to lauch their North American tour this September right before they  release their debut studio album Get Wet on September 24th via Columbia Records. 

Known for their electric mix of pop and electro house/dubstep, the buzz surrounding Krewella's sweat-heavy, dance-a-tronic shows have made them one of the most popular EDM performers  in the past two years selling out shows.  USA Today recently dubbed them "the EDM world's next big stars."

They set out on their 44-city  "Get Wet Tour" September 5th in Austin and ends November 16th in their hometown of Chicago.  Los Angeles will see them at the Palladium on August 14th.

Check out their tour teaser below. 

"GET WET TOUR" teaser

KREWELLA "Get Wet" Tour dates:
9/5/2013            AUSTIN, TX                   AUSTIN MUSIC HALL
9/6/2013            HOUSTON, TX              STEREO LIVE
9/7/2013            DALLAS, TX                  HOUSE OF BLUES
9/8/2013            SAN ANTONIO, TX        COWBOYS
9/12/2013          TUSCON, AZ                 RIALTO THEATER
9/14/2013          LOS ANGELES, CA       PALLADIUM
9/15/2013          LAS VEGAS, NV           DAYLIGHT
9/18/2013          RENO, NV                     KNITTING FACTORY
9/19/2013          SANTA CRUZ, CA         CATALYST
9/20/2013          SAN FRANCISCO, CA   WARFIELD
9/21/2013          LAS VEGAS, NV            IHEART RADIO
9/22/2013          CHICO, CA                    SENATOR THEATER
9/25/2013          CORVALLIS, OR           SUBZERO
9/26/2013          EUGENE, OR                 LANE EVENTS CENTER
9/27/2013          PORTLAND, OR            ROSELAND THEATER
9/28/2013          SEATTLE, WA               PARAMOUNT
10/1/2013          VICTORIA, BC               9ONE9
10/2/2013          VANCOUVER, BC         CELEBRITIES
10/3/2013          KELOWNA, BC             SAPPHIRE
10/5/2013          EDMONTON, ALB         ENCORE
10/8/2013          SPOKANE, WA              KNITTING FACTORY
10/9/2013          MISSOULA, MT             THE WILMA
10/10/2013        BOISE, ID                      REVOLUTION
10/11/2013        DENVER, CO                1ST BANK CENTER
10/12/2013        SALT LAKE CITY, UT    GREAT SALTAIR
10/14/2013        TULSA, OK                    CAIN’S BALLROOM
10/16/2013        URBANA, IL                   CANOPY CLUB
10/17/2013        CLEVELAND, OH          HOUSE OF BLUES
10/18/2013        COLUMBUS, OH            BLUESTONE
10/19/2013        DETROIT, MI                 ROYAL OAK
10/20/2013        DETROIT, MI                 ROYAL OAK
10/24/2013        MONTREAL, ON            TELUS THEATRE
10/25/2013        OTTAWA, ON                ERNST & YOUNG CENTRE
10/29/2013        SYRACUSE, NY             F SHED
10/30/2013        BOSTON, MA                HOUSE OF BLUES
11/2/2013          WASHINGTON, DC        ECHOSTAGE
11/4/2013          CHARLOTTE, NC           FILLMORE
11/7/2013          ATLANTA, GA                TABERNACLE
11/8/2013          MIAMI, FL                       FILLMORE
11/12/2013        NASHVILLE, TN             WAR MEMORIAL
11/14/2013        INDIANAPOLIS, IN          EGYPTIAN ROOM
11/15/2013        ST. LOUIS, MO             PAGEANT
11/16/2013        CHICAGO, IL                 ARAGON 


Wednesday, July 17, 2013


Cassadee Pope

Here's Cassadee Pope's first video for her first song since winning NBC's The Voice last year.  From pop princess to country charmer, Pope premiered the  video for "Wasting All These Tears" on CMT today and is currently on tour with Rascal Flatts and Band Perry through September.

"Wasting All These Tears" by Cassadee Pope

Tuesday, July 16, 2013


There's one thing on my bucket list of bands I thought I would never cross off until today when psychedelic pop  band Mazzy Star released their first song in 17 years.  1993's So Tonight That I Might See was the soundtrack many late nights in my college dorm room.  

Today, they released the first track off their announced fourth studio album Seasons of You Day, their first album in 17 years. The song is called "California" and it uses simple and barely there instruments that only push forward and highlight frontwoman Hope Sandoval's dreamy, vocal echoes.  The album is set to release September 24th and here's hoping a tour is in the works.  

"California" by Mazzy Star


The Indecent are currently performing on The Vans Warped Tour.
photo by picksysticks
Alternative Press just premiered the new video from New York's own The Indecent.  "25 Steps" off the band's debut EP Control proves why this sibling trio (Emily, Maddy and Bo) along with drummer Nicholas Burrows were recently named as one of the '100 Bands You Need to Know in 2013.'  

But it's the way "25 Steps"  begins that jolts you like a cornered alley cat.   A thunderstorm of pounding drums and dark bass gives way to gritty guitars and scowling vocals from frontwoman Emily Brout.  The Indecent, giving a fresh sound to grunge rock, are currently performing at Vans Warped Tour.  This is actually a remake of this video.  The first go around, they shot while they were in their teens and state that this was the first song they ever wrote together.  



Joy Formidable tours with Passion Pit this fall.  Performs at The Greek Theater this October.
photo by picksysticks
Today, Joy Formidable's EP, Silent Treatment is released and the video for the single, released yesterday, was directed by ArchEnemies in beautiful black and white about the hurt and finality of coming to terms of a broken relationship. 

Joy Formidable also announced tour dates with The Passion Pit traveling coast to coast beginning September 2nd in Seattle and ending 25 cities later in West Palm Beach in November.  The Greek Theater will be their Los Angeles stop on October 25th.  

Presale tickets go on sale Wednesday at 10 am right HERE
Silent Treatment is available today at Amazon right HERE.

"Silent Treatment" by Joy Formidable

Monday, July 15, 2013



Check  out Bleached performing live in the studio for Noisey VICE 's Newtown Radio.  ‪For this session Bleached played several songs off their new album including, "Waiting by the Telephone," "Love Spells" and a Misfits cover, "Hybrid Moments." 

And click HERE or go to Noisey VICE's Newtown Radio sessions to read the full article.  


Goldfrapp, set to release their new album Tales of Us on September 10th, just released the first video for the song “Drew.”  Tales of Us, which is Goldfrapp’s sixth album has been two years in the making and is self-described as their most 'cinematic and intimate recording so far.'  

“Drew” which is the first and lead single was released today accompanied by a short film by filmmaker Lisa Gunning who will also create a uniquely cinematic narrative for the album which will be shown in theaters later this year. “Drew” is the first of many films from the album.  

"Drew" by Goldfrapp

Friday, July 12, 2013


FountNHead performs at Vans Warped Tour in Pomona.
photo by picksysticks
Here's one of my favorite bands from this year's Vans Warped Tour at Pomona.  One of the highlights of the day came from a band that didn’t play on any stage.  Between the beer garden and the Spotify Stage, a band from Atlanta called FountNhead had one of THE best performances of the day.  With a booth set up next to the main stage, FountNhead had surprise pop-up performances, racing in a few songs, against time,  before the next band started to play above them.  

The trio, consisting of Jewel, Sainto and Nixon,  echos the political, rap/rock sounds of Rage Against the Machine.    Their song “As A Skunk” is an energized, fighting the machine anthem follwed by fist pumping, hard rockin’ beats peaked the interest of those walking by;  enough so that a sizable crowd stopped to listen. I came back for seconds and thirds, knowing I’ll get to hear more songs each time I stopped by.  Don’t miss these guys!  Fountnhead will be playing the entire Warped Tour. 


Thursday, July 11, 2013


Kathleen Hanna, the legendary singer behind Bikini Kill and Le Tigre has released a solo album under the name Julie Ruin and she's assembled an all-star cast of musicians to round out the band including Kathi Wilcox (Bikini Kill), Kenny Mellman (Kiki and Herb), Carmine Covelli (actor) and Sara Landeau (Rock Camp for Girls mentor).  

Julie Ruin has also announced their first ever national tour beginning in September.  They play Los Angeles' The Echo w/La Sera on Sept. 19th. 

The album, titled Run Fast will be released on TJR Records on September 3rd.   Pre-order the album and get an instant download of "Oh Come On," the first single off their debut album Run Fast which you can watch the video below. 

"Oh Come On" by Julie Ruin

Julie Ruin Tour Dates
9/3: New York, NY @ Bowery Ballroom *
9/5: Philadelphia, PA @ Union Transfer *
9/7: Washington, DC @ Black Cat *
9/12: Portland, OR @ TBA Festival
9/15: Seattle, WA @ Neumo’s #
9/17: San Francisco, CA @ Slims #
9/19: Los Angeles, CA @ The Echo #
9/22: San Diego, CA @ Irenic #
11/8-10: Austin, TX @ Fun Fun Fun Fest
* = w/ Swearin’ as support
# = w/ La Sera as support

Wednesday, July 10, 2013


Can't wait for this. Here's new studio footage of Birdy recording music for her forthcoming album, featuring snippets of two brand new tracks. The much anticipated Album will released on 23rd September 2013 in the UK.

Worldwide Release Dates:
20th Sept - Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, Benelux, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Norway, Finland.
23rd Sept - France, UK, Denmark, Sweden, Portugal, Greece, Middle East, Africa.
24th Sept - Italy, Spain, Latin America, South East Asia.

Monday, July 8, 2013


Electric Valentine
Lauren Baird of Electric Valentine performs at The Playhouse.
photo by picksysticks
This has been a long time waiting.  LA's own Electric Valentine, made up of Lauren Baird and Chris Qualls,  is releasing their new album Circuitry July 16th.  And to celebrate, they're having a CD release party on July 20th at the Silverlake Lounge presented by Elektro-PR.  

They just released two singles off the album - "Albatross" a slow, burning, electro-ballad,  which you can watch the video below and today, they released a lyric video for their song "Time Bomb" featuring NO DOUBT'S  Adrian Young.

"Time Bomb" by Electric Valentine

"Albatross" by Electric Valentine

Saturday, July 6, 2013


Tonight Alive
Tonight Alive performs on day 1 of Vans Warped Tour in Pomona, Ca.
photos by picksysticks
"The Best Day Ever" is this year's slogan for the annual Vans Warped Tour.  Celebrating its 19th year, Warped Tour is a rite of passage for teenagers and for most of us, the kick off to summer.  And as always, Warped has a knack for discovering up-and-coming bands on the cusp of breaking out.  It happened with Paramore, No Doubt, Katy Perry, Eminem and a pre-Fergie Black Eyed Peas.

This year was no different. Pomona last year broke records with nearly 17,000 people attending the Fairgrounds. It ended up being the second largest crowd in Warped Tour history. This year, Pomona hosted the tour for two days straight while also offering a wide-range of lifestyle attractions on-site for a traditionally low ticket price.  And that's what make Vans Warped Tour attractive to so many sponsors - from American Rag, AP magazine, FUSE, Kia and Spotify. 

With so many bands to choose from, a mandatory stop at the monstrous and inflatable schedule is the first thing you should do to begin planning your day.   Of course, with help from cute volunteers reminding you by parading signs from bands' set times, you'll never miss your favorite band.

11 stages sprawled the Pomona Fairgrounds, making it a music lovers playground  with artists from all genres: rock, punk, pop, hip-hop, folk-punk and reggae.  But in the midst of all the testesterone filled lineup, girls managed to shine brightly on this day.  Here is our list of bands to watch at this year's Vans Warped Tour.  

Tonight Alive
Tonight Alive

Tonight Alive, on their second tour of duty on Warped, returns with their fierce, high octane, high energy pop-punk staple stateside.  

Tonight AliveAustralia's answer for Paramore and We Are The In Crowd, frontwoman Jenna McDougal's poweful vocals can go from 0 to 60 on the stop of a dime; from the electrifying "Breaking an Entering" and "Thank You & Goodnight " to vulnerable and slow  "Amelia" Jenna's control is flawless.  

They've been riding the wave off their critically acclaimed 2011 debut album "What Are You So Scared Of?"  Two years later, they're set to release their follow-up this September called "The Other Side," already releasing its first single "The Ocean" to positive reviews.  Just like last year, Tonight Alive will be performing for the full 40-date tour. 

Setlist: Listening / Thank You & Goodnight / Wasting Away / Starlight / Amelia / The Ocean / What Are You So Scared Of? / Breaking & Entering

Five Knives

Just like the #Domo Stage, also new this year is the Spotify Stage which showcases new exciting and up and coming EDM artists.  Nashville's best kept secret, Five Knives was a welcome surprise.  Country they ain't. Who would've guessed that the home of the Grand Ol' Opry had a thriving electric/dance scene.  If not, then Five Knives, fronted by Anna Worstell,  is breaking down those walls and bringing in some EDM to the GOP. 

Five Knives

Under Los Angeles' hot afternoon sun, Lamar Baptiste, Zach Hall and Shane Wise donned metalic/relfective masks under their goth-like garments and exploded into their set.  Echoing a soundtrack to the post-apocalyptic world of Mad Max, this foursome gives new meaning to sonic landscaping, layering pop, metal, R&B and electro to fuse unique and fresh sounds all their own.  By the end of their set, the crowd stretched all the way past the sound booth to the merch tents.They've had a successful year so far, recently coming off tours with Smashing Pumpkins and Die Antwood and they performed a slew of dates at SXSW in March.   

Young London

Last year, I managed to catch Boston's Young London play at Warped Tour.  Unfortunatley, it was inside the silent disco tent where you had to listen to their performance via wireless headphones.   For those outside the tent passing by, seeing people dance to complete silence surely looked awkward, like mimes during some avant gard New York modern art show.  

Young LondonThis year, Young London was front and center to display their high energy pop/dance music for all to see; sound turned up to infectious levels that reached out across the Pomona Fairgrounds.  

Young London's energetic live shows have been garnering word of mouth since they formed in 2011.  Their shows? A dance party-like atmosphere that's so infectious you can't help but start to dance.Spearker-climbimg Matt baits the crowd into singing along while Sarah twirls and hops onstage, pumping up the crowd. Trading vocals are Matt Rhoades and Sarah Graziani as bright confetti covered skies rained down on the already hot day.  Unfortuneatley, it did nothing to cool down their scorching performance and the sweat-drenched crowd.  

Their hit song, "Let Me Go" a simple reminder of how catchy and memorable their songs are.  Add to that their new songs like "I Still Dream" and "Broken" that blend Matt's no-holds barred, potent vocals against the soft and pastel-like voice of Sarah's and you get a ying and yang collaboration that balances both aggressive and soft melodies of what Young London is known for. They’re definitely loud and proud, making no apologies for their take no prisoners attitude. While most artist are trying to change the world through their music, Young London just wants to party while others are trying to do it.  There's no harm in that. 

The heavy hitters, usually performing on the Tilly's Stage boasted New Years Day and New Zealander Gin Wigmore.

Gin Wigmore, whose a multi-platinum recording artist in her home of New Zealand is a mere no-name here in the States. Well, that's about to change soon. With Gin performing on every single day of this 40-date tour, her name and music will start to generate the buzz she's accustomed to in her homeland.   If you haven't heard of Gin Wigmore, you've probably already heard her  without even knowing.  Her songs "Black Sheep" and "Kill of the NIght" were featured on shows like "Grey's Anatomy," "Revenge," and "Teen Wolf" while "Man Like That" was used in the Heineken commercial that was used during James Bond's "Skyfall" tie-in. 
Gin Wigmore

Her album Gravel & Wine, released in April, borrows from classic Americana, adding venom into her melodies with touches of Outlaw Country and with a little touch of soul and you've got some dirty, rock 'n hillbilly with attitude.   Add to that her hot, pink denim shorts and 'moves like Jagger' and hips don't lie' hip-shaking action and Gin Wigmore is redefining what Outlaw Country looks and sounds like.

Definitely the rising star at this year's tour, she proved that much at the Warped Tour kick-off party back in March at Club Nokia. Not heavy on punk or metal, it's going to be hard to tell how much of a dent she will make with this much younger crowd until after the tour.  But it won't be surprising to see Gin's popularity rise once word of mouth gets out about a great her new album is.  

New Years Day

This is the third go around at Warped Tour for local power-pop, five-piece New Years Day.  Hailing form Anaheim and fronted by Ashley Costello, NYD is the impending dark cloud in the horizon. Like the calm before the storm, you can see and feel them coming.  Only then, do you realize how powerful they are, in sound and energy, when they're right on top of you.  No escape.  Hunker down and enjoy the ride that is New Years Day.  Surviving their set is a badge of honor.


The great thing about Warped Tour are the new bands you're likely to discover.  The Ernie Ball Stage was the place for that.  Pasadena-based Echosmith, consists of teen siblings Sydney, Jamie, Noah and Graham. Although they're young, they're practically veterans in the music scene.   Busking at a young age at Santa Monica's Third Street Promenade, they got signed with Warner Bros. Records and supported Owl City on their tour last February.  Just last week, Warped Tour officially announced that, because of their popularity,  Echosmith will stay on the tour for the remaining dates through August.
They have a mature sound which isn't surprising when you learn that they grew up in a musical household, their musical influences ranging from Mumford and Sons to Joy Division which probably explains the large turnout when they performed at day one at Pomona.  Their songs has a retro, '80s shine to it mixed in with New Wave pop.    Just listen to their new single "Come Together," with its vintage sounding, romanticized postcard feel.  Their alternative melodies take on a modern twist that makes their songs sound fresh and new.  "Cool Kids" is probably their darkest tune, layering catchy yet moody melodies with Sydney barely singing above a whisper.  And working the crowd like pros, they threw in  Modern English's "I Melt With You" and got the crowd singing along towards the end of their set. 

And with their debut album coming out later this year on top of  Alternative Press magazine just naming Echosmith as one of the "Top 100 Bands To Look Out for in 2013"  the sky is the limit for these siblings.  

The Material

The Ernie Ball Battle of the Bands is now in its 17th year and has proven to be a breeding ground for North America's best unsigned talent.  The winner for this year's contest was The Material from Southern California. 
The Material

Going to a Material show is like buying a one way ticket on the high seas on one of those boats on Discovery's "Deadliest Catch";  serene, milky pond one second in songs like "Bottles" then gale-force winds and tsunami waves the next as heard on "Life Vest" and "Gasoline."  At first notice of The Material, you marvel at the powerful vocals of lead singer Colleen D'Agostino balancing  above crashing,  aggressive sounds.    Colleen, along with shipmates , Jon Moreaux, Roi Elam, Kevin Pintado and Jordan Meckley drives this boat named "The Material," maneuvering into the impending doom, taking 60 foot rogue waves head on. If they can't find a way through, they'll make one.   One way or another, you're stuck for the ride of your life. Like a carefully choreographed dance with the waves, The Material knows that without risk, there is no winning.  

The darlings of the indie music scene , The Material has found themselves on many influential lists like Purevolume's Top 20 Unsigned Bands and have been featured in Alternative Press Magazine, MTV, Music Connection and MF Magazine.  And with their latest album Everything I Want To Say released in April, 2013 is looking to be a breakout year for this So-Cal band.

Allison Weiss
The Acoustic Basement Tent is a stark contrast to what was going on outside. While outside, the blaring sounds of metal and punk rock controlled the fairgrounds, inside the Acoustic Basement Stage, it was a different story. Featuring established and up-and-coming singer/songwriters, this day showcased Allison Weiss.

Self described as folk-infused powerpop, Brooklyn-based Allison infectious melodies are only highlighted by her catchy lyrics.  “I want a one way love” she sings on One Way Love, “ The kinds that won’t give up. I want to hope, one trust, one need, one lust.”  And it’s those types of lyrics that Allison has a way of showing the bright side of heartbreak in her newest album Say What You Mean.   She’ll end her Warped Tour this Wednesday at Washington D.C. then then head on tour with Slingshot Dakota for the rest of July until she heads across the pond for her European tour.
One Way Love

A+ Dropouts
The Girlz Garage Tent is a place the focuses on the ladies.  This day, the teens of A+ Dropouts performed under the pink shaded tent, which was also the home of Keep A Breast where you could also find I ‘heart’ boobies bracelets and merchandise.  

As their official bio boasts, "A+ Dropouts members spend their days filling their report card with A+'s but when the school bell rings, they rock the stage with their high energy shows."  Not a stretch since their sound does reflect living the life as teens on the sunny shores of the OC - fun and carefree as they sing  of love and heartbreak that only kids at their age can feel because every emotion is new for them.  And that's why Boy Games, the latest EP from  A+ Dropouts, fronted by 15 year-old Cheska Zaide, sounds refreshing and  not forced.  

For each stop on the tour, a local stage featured bands selected through regional “battle of the bands” process punched through by votes.  This year, I happened to stop during a performance from MadnMac, two sisters from Anaheim.  

MadNMac's Mackenzie Paige and Madison Marie

Writing their own songs, Madison Marie (15) and Mackenzie Paige’s (18) unique sound of mixing elements of pop, rock, R&B, reggae and a little bit of country made them stand out at this year’s festival.   And with a confident stage presence, MadnMack proved why these two have been making music since before they were teens, having already released two albums with their most recent Everyone's Watching released earlier this year with standout singles "That's My City" and "Forever in a Day." Check it out!

One of the highlights of the day came from a band that didn’t play on any stage.  Between the beer garden and the Spotify Stage, a band from Atlanta called FountNhead had one of THE best performances of the day.  With a booth set up next to the main stage, FountNhead had surprise pop-up performances, racing in a few songs, against time,  before the next band started to play above them.   

Click HERE to check out the rest of our photos from Warped Tour Pomona.


The trio, consisting of Jewel, 
Sainto and Nixon,  echos the political, rap/rock sounds of Rage 
Against the Machine.    Their song “As A Skunk” is an energized, fighting the machine anthem follwed by fist pumping, hard rockin’ beats peaked the interest of those walking by;  enough so that a sizable crowd stopped to listen. I came back for seconds and thirds, knowing I’ll get to hear more songs each time I stopped by.  Don’t miss these guys!  Fountnhead will be playing the entire Warped Tour. 

Other notable bands we wished we caught were Lost In Atlantis since I was stuck in line and when they played first at 11:30. Hopefully I'll get a chance to watch them soon. 

Vans Warped Tour continues to have a strong contingency of women-fronted bands. This year they seemed to top themselves yet again with some favorites such as New Years Day and Tonight Alive and some new up-and-coming bands like Gin Wigmore, Echosmith,  Five Knives and Fountnhead. Warped Tour continues through August. Be sure to catch one of them, if not all, if they make it to your town.