Entries tagged with: Hop Along

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by Andrew Sacher

The Wonder Years

"Pop punk" was once widely considered a dirty term in most indie rock circles, but over the past few years it's been sneaking into indie rock vernacular. We use it here on BV a lot. Pitchfork has used it when talking about anyone from Cloud Nothings to Upset to Joyce Manor. Stereogum has used it for The Sidekicks, Chumped, and Cayetana. NPR for Wavves, Title Fight and Waxahatchee. The list goes on.

It's easy to see what made "pop punk" such a turnoff as it became progressively more mainstream in the '90s and early '00s. "Punk" is a genre with a code of ethics that punk fans feel should be kept sacred, and "pop" is basically the antithesis of those ethics. So "pop punk" is theoretically the worst thing that could ever happen to punk. Indie rock fans adhere to similar ethics, so when "What's My Age Again?" hit TRL, it's no surprise that Sebadoh fans weren't gluing their eyes to their TVs.

But for a younger generation, some combination of Green Day, The Offspring, Rancid, blink-182 and New Found Glory (or all of the above) was a foundational listening experience, and an entry point into alternative music. Those bands may have made punk more mainstream, but they were also gateways to older and more universally canonized artists. blink-182 directly led to Descendents, Dinosaur Jr and Drive Like Jehu; Green Day to Husker Du; Rancid to Roger Miret and Sham 69; New Found Glory to Lifetime and Gorilla Biscuits; and so on. The people who grew up on those bands are becoming today's indie rock musicians, fans, and critics, so it makes sense that the sounds of pop punk are making their way into indie rock. Not to mention Best Coast, who started as a lo-fi band on Mexican Summer, went on to cover blink-182, collaborate with New Found Glory, and tour with Green Day.

photo: Best Coast opening for Green Day in 2013 (more by Dana Distortion)
Green Day

Right now, the amount of bands blurring the lines between indie rock and pop punk is pretty astounding. We saw pop punk's influence sneak into indie rock on a handful of our favorite records of last year, and this year we have great records from Colleen Green, Bully, Superheaven, Turnover, All Dogs, Radioactivity, Royal Headache, Titus Andronicus, Worriers, Hop Along and Adventures that all fit the description.

Even with this huge influx of indie rock bands taking influence from pop punk, it's not hard to see why there's still resistance against the "pop punk" tag. The kind of over-produced pop punk that critics cringed at in the early 2000s is still very popular. All Time Low's new album debuted at #2 on Billboard this year and there's nothing "punk" about this. 5 Seconds of Summer may be the biggest band in the world right now that anyone is calling "pop punk," but they also share management with One Direction, have toured with them, and are closer in sound to 1D than to any band who ever signed a contract with Fat Wreck Chords. If 5SOS can be called pop punk, or apparently anyone who plays Warped Tour -- like Front Porch Step, who in addition to his questionable actions, makes cringe-worthy music that has nothing to do with pop punk -- it's understandable why some people want to avoid the term.

There's also a group of bands who frequently play Warped Tour and not only warrant being called pop punk, but pride themselves on it: bands like Man Overboard, The Story So Far, Four Year Strong, Neck Deep and State Champs. Their approach is basically to take the moment pop punk took over the world and recreate it. (The Drive-Thru Records catalog is a big influence here.) They're not shy about their style -- Man Overboard make shirts that say "Defend Pop Punk" and Neck Deep make ones that say "Generic Pop Punk." They don't seem to be after hugely mainstream success and tend to build their fanbases like punk bands do, but to our ears they're usually unoriginal at best and still kinda cheesy at worst.

If you have any place in your heart for early 2000s-era mainstream pop punk though (and if you've read this far, you probably do), there's one band I think is doing a hell of a lot of justice to it: The Wonder Years. Unlike the bands bringing pop punk's influence into indie rock, The Wonder Years are making the kind of pop punk that is in fact pop music, but they also happen to make really fucking good pop music. It's becoming more prevalent for critics and "serious music fans" to discuss great pop music, and this is a good thing because great music can truly come from anywhere. The recent Beyonce and Justin Timberlake albums were steps forward for music in general, whether or not you normally listen to the radio. A lot of fans and critics noted that, but for whatever reason there's still a stigma when it comes to pop punk. You're more likely to see certain critics champion Fifth Harmony, a new teen-pop group formed by Simon Cowell on The X Factor, than even mention the latest Bad Religion or Rancid albums. It's a stigma that hopefully disappears, because The Wonder Years don't deserve to be ignored by any serious music fan.

photo: The Wonder Years at House of Vans in 2011 (more by Andrew St. Clair)
The Wonder Years

The Wonder Years started out as more of a generic pop punk band, and while in hindsight I respect the people who knew they were great from day one (or at least since their 2010 breakthrough The Upsides), they didn't really catch my ear until 2011's Suburbia I've Given You All and Now I'm Nothing. And it didn't really click until 2013's The Greatest Generation, which might be the greatest true-blue radio-ready pop punk record since Enema of the State. It probably owes more to New Found Glory and The Starting Line than it does to blink-182, but even if those bands have proved to be more influential, they never had this level of songwriting or maturity. Even on New Found Glory's "mature" album, they couldn't escape writing songs about girls who "smell like angels ought to smell." The Greatest Generation grapples with hitting your mid-to-late '20s, seeing your friends and cousins getting married and transitioning into adulthood, and thinking "did I fuck up?" When they do sound like they're singing about high school crushes ("I hadn't felt a heartbreak until now") you quickly realize they're singing about the death of a friend.

It's close to an absolute perfection of its form, and it's hard to say just yet if they've topped it, though they've undoubtedly made another artistic leap on the new No Closer to Heaven. It's the band's most overwhelmingly emotional album yet, and the most musically diverse too. In 45 minutes it touches on double-time pop punk, slower atmospheric songs, heavy rock riffs, and an acoustic song to close things out. It's the kind of record that might piss off some old fans and cause them to say The Wonder Years "aren't pop punk anymore," but it might win over a bunch of new fans in the process. It's pop punk's Sunbather. The thing is though, unlike say Title Fight's trek into atmospheric rock, this is a pop punk album. It pushes the boundaries of the genre about as far as they can go without losing the type of thrill you specifically get from this style of music. Really it shouldn't piss off old fans because it manages to retain the sound they've always had while clearly pushing it forward.

It makes me think a lot of Brand New's The Devil and God Are Raging Inside Me. It doesn't sound like Devil and God, but that was the moment Brand New made a devastating, cathartic album that defied its genre without abandoning it, and that's what TWY do here. They're also similar to Brand New in that each record is a shift from the last, and that people (rightfully) worship these guys. To compare it to an album it does sound like, it's actually a little like The Hotelier's last one, and that may be the most acclaimed album the entire emo revival has given us. But it feels a little unfair to compare those two, because The Hotelier are a young (yet fully-formed) band and No Closer to Heaven is clearly the work of seasoned songwriters.

The Wonder Years are more dynamically diverse here than ever. They know just when to switch from a chorus turned up to 11 to a bridge of clean guitar arpeggios and back again. They know which lyric needs a three-part harmony, which needs frontman Dan "Soupy" Campbell to sing gently and which needs him at the top of his lungs. At least half the songs completely avoid the standard verse-chorus-verse. Recurring lyrics and themes throughout an album aren't new ground for The Wonder Years, but No Closer to Heaven might be the closest they've come to a true concept album. Death, if it wasn't obvious, is that concept here. The lyric we hear over and over is "We're no saviors if we can't save our brothers," and that's only one of the instantly-quotable lines packed into this thing. There's a harsh reality to Soupy's lyrics this time around, and when he brings his voice to a shout it feels more like a reflex than an artistic decision.

Like the last record, his melodies are familiar without being predictable. Thanks in part to the fact that almost every member can sing, they've mastered the kind of multi-part harmonies and overlapping vocals that most of their peers aren't even attempting. (My only complaint about the new album is the guest vocals from the singer of letlive. who come too close to a maligned genre I won't defend, nu-metal.) The production is once again shining with gloss, but nothing sounds artificial -- unlike many of their peers, the band and longtime producer Steve Evetts (who has helmed other pop punk classics like Jersey's Best Dancers and Through Being Cool) have long discussed avoiding auto-tune and sample replacing. The interplay between the band's three guitarists also make this far more detailed than punk's "learn three power chords, form a band" mentality. But The Wonder Years do stay true to the latter half of the phrase "pop punk," and if you've seen them live you know this. They typically fill big rooms these days, but they still play like they came out swinging from a South Philly basement. They might not win over a snobby punk purist, but for the genre-hopping listener who finds emotional depth and musical ambition in both the new Drake and the new Sufjan Stevens, you may find it in the new Wonder Years too.

photo: You Blew It! at Riis Park Beach Bazaar - August, 2015 (more by Mimi Hong)
You Blew It

No Closer to Heaven is out today via Hopeless (order yours) and you can stream the whole thing via Rdio, below.

They'll be on tour this year with another unique pop punk band, Motion City Soundtrack, emo revival darlings You Blew It!, and State Champs. That tour hits NYC for two Webster Hall shows in October, but first TWY play an acoustic in-store at Rough Trade on Wednesday (9/9).

Continue reading "Pop punk's complicated relationship with indie rock, and the great new Wonder Years album (which is streaming)"

FYF Fest

Via press release...

FYF Fest's 12th year kicks off this Saturday at the L.A. Memorial Sports Arena & Exposition Park. Kanye West will now headline Saturday night's Main Stage. Frank Ocean has decided on his own terms to cancel his appearance.

With a lineup that already includes Morrissey, D'Angelo and the Vanguard, FKA Twigs, Chet Faker, Flume, Belle & Sebastian and more, FYF Fest is excited to have Kanye West play this weekend in his newly adopted home of Los Angeles.
Tickets are still available, and this lineup tweak may have upped their demand just a bit. Check out the full schedule.

photo: Hop Along at Baby's in May (more by Amanda Hatfield)
Hop Along

Hop Along have been doing a lot of touring this year in support of their excellent new album, Painted Shut, and they'll continue to do so through late fall. The new dates include their largest headlining NYC show yet, Bowery Ballroom on December 12. Opening is the similarly great Radiator Hospital, plus Des Ark. Tickets for that show go on sale Friday (8/14) at noon.

Hop Along singer Frances Quinlan will be in NYC sooner than that to open for Deer TIck singer John McCauley at City Winery. We already mentioned the September 7 show, which is now sold out, but a September 8 show was since added. Frances opens both. Tickets for 9/8 are on sale now.

All Hop Along dates are listed below...

Continue reading "Hop Along expand tour, add NYC with Radiator Hospital; Frances Quinlan opening for John McCauley (dates)"

by Andrew Sacher

Lithuania

Philly's Lithuania is another band of Eric Slick of Dr. Dog, but they're nothing like that band. Eric collaborated with Dominic Angelella (also of DRGN KING) to make the kind of crunchy, fuzzy rock that's closer to Weezer or indie rock's recent flirtations with pop punk and emo. The album was produced by Hop Along's Joe Reinhart and Thin Lips' Kyle Pulley, and Hop Along singer Frances Quinlan makes an appearance on the album's title track, "Hardcore Friends," along with Field Mouse singer Rachel Browne. The album comes out August 14 via Lame-O Records (pre-order physical or digital), and a full stream premieres below.

Continue reading "Lithuania streaming debut LP, feat. members of Hop Along"

by Andrew Sacher

Hop Along

For this year's highly acclaimed Painted Shut, Hop Along signed to Saddle Creek, and now the label announced that they will also re-press that album's excellent predecessor, Get Disowned. You can also get involved, by helping to choose what color the vinyl will be. The label writes:

We're currently prepping a reissue of Hop Along's debut full-length, Get Disowned, and we need your help to choose the color! Cast your vote below for opaque ivory, transparent clear, opaque gold, or opaque dark blue. Voting concludes end of day July 30th, and we will announce the winning color on July 31st. Also on July 31st, your account will be updated with a download of the album!
No release date has been set, "due to the volatility of vinyl manufacturing," but Saddle Creek plans to have them shipped out by the end of the year. You can pre-order and enter the color contest here.

Hop Along will be in NJ this weekend for the XPoNential Music Festival with My Morning Jacket, St. Vincent, Courtney Barnett, and more (tickets).

In case you're not familiar with Get Disowned, you can stream it below...

Continue reading "Saddle Creek re-pressing Hop Along's 'Get Disowned' (you can vote on what color the vinyl will be)"

photo: Hop Along at Baby's All Right in May (more by Amanda Hatfield)
Hop Along

We just mentioned how a lot of music websites (like NPR) use this year midpoint to post their favorite albums of the year so far. Pitchfork isn't one of them, but they do post their Overlooked Records of the year. They write, "None of these releases received a Best New Music designation and not all were rated above an 8.0 but all are records worth revisiting." They've got a couple metal albums (Bell Witch, Sannhet), that ambient Jeff Bridges album, and the no-longer-overlooked indie rockers Hop Along (who also made best-of-2015-so-far lists from Rolling Stone, AV Club, Stereogum, Paste, Flavorwire, Noisey, and NPR's song list).

The list is also interestingly heavy on relatively underground electronic records, including Lakker, Mbongwana Star, Mumdance & Logos, Anthony Naples, Pearson Sound and Smurphy. Check out the whole list below, and read their commentary here.

Sicko Mobb

In terms of rap, it has Joey Bada$$ (who plays NYC this week), and Chicago duo Sicko Mobb. Sicko Mobb will make their way over to NYC on July 25 for Warm Up with Baauer, Skepta and more (tickets); and a late show at Palisades that night with Taso, Ricky Eat Acid and Tripletrain (tickets).

Sicko Mobb made the list for their Super Saiyan Vol 2 mixtape, which you can download for free at DatPiff and stream below...

Continue reading "Pitchfork list their overlooked records of 2015 (including Sicko Mobb, who play NYC soon)"

by Andrew Sacher

Lowercase Roses

Tigers Jaw are going on a short acoustic tour this week, and opening those shows will be The Sidekicks guitarist Matt Scheuermann's other project, lowercase roses (previously known simply as roses). Matt released the three-song self-titled lowercases roses EP on Christmas last year, and it's good stuff. They're somber acoustic songs that fall somewhere between early Death Cab and The Microphones, and should work well on an acoustic tour with Tigers Jaw. That's the EP's artwork above (designed by Hop Along singer Frances Quinlan) and you can stream the whole thing below.

The tour is in Philly tonight, Somerville on Friday, and NYC on Saturday. As discussed, that NYC show happens at Le Poisson Rouge (6/27). Tickets are still available.

For Tigers Jaw, the tour is in support of their new acoustic album, Studio 4 Acoustic Session. As you may know, Studio 4 is the studio of producer Will Yip, who recorded Tigers Jaw's last album, and recent albums by Title Fight, mewithoutYou, Pianos Become the Teeth, Pity Sex and so many more. (It was just announced today that he's working on the new Nothing album too.) Will also partnered with Run for Cover Records (which Tigers Jaw is signed to) to launch his own imprint, Memory Music, which is the label putting out Tigers Jaw's acoustic album next week. You can stream it in full below and pre-order it here.

Tigers Jaw also have full-band shows coming up, but they're opening for New Found Glory and Yellowcard. If you're into that sorta thing, you can see that tour in NYC on 10/24 at Best Buy Theater (tickets). All TJ dates below.

Lastly, speaking of The Sidekicks, they have a few shows with All Dogs coming up. None in NYC, but they'll be nearby for an Asbury Park show on August 20 at Asbury Lanes with ROMP (tickets). That same month, All Dogs are releasing their new album, Kicking Every Day, on Salinas Records (8/28). Teaser video, album artwork, tracklist and list of dates, below.

Continue reading "lowercase roses (mem The Sidekicks) opening for Tigers Jaw, who are streaming their acoustic LP ++ new All Dogs coming"

Made In America

In addition to the Made In America-presented Mary J Blige show that happened last week and the second TBA one-day NYC show, the Jay Z-curated Budweiser Made In America festival returns to Philly Labor Day Weekend. It happens September 5-6 at Benjamin Franklin Parkway and the lineup includes Beyonce, The Weeknd, J Cole, Bassnectar, Modest Mouse, Death Cab for Cutie, Meek Mill, Big Sean, Future, Duke Dumont, A-Trak, Santigold, Metric, De La Soul, Action Bronson, Earl Sweatshirt, Vic Mensa, Flatbush Zombies, Creepoid, Superheaven, Hop Along, Waxahatchee, Strand of Oaks and more. Tickets are on AmEx presale now, and the general on-sale starts Monday (6/29) at noon.

Full lineup below...

Continue reading "Made In America 2015 lineup & tix: Beyonce, The Weeknd, J Cole, Modest Mouse, Death Cab, Earl Sweatshirt & more"

photos by Amanda Hatfield, words by Andrew Sacher

Hop Along @ Baby's - 5/10/15
Hop Along
Hop Along

Hop Along released their new record Painted Shut last week (5/5) on Saddle Creek (their first for the label), and brought their tour with Thin Lips to NYC for two sold-out shows in support of it. They hit Rough Trade on release day, also with Crying, and Baby's All Right last night (5/10), also with Quit.

Quit is the current band of 1994!'s Chris Diehm, and they definitely retain some of that band's '90s-inspired emo, as you can hear on last year's impressive demos. I unfortunately missed their set last night, but did see Chris as he was pulling double duty as Thin Lips' guitarist. (Between him and Hop Along's Joe Reinhart [ex-Algernon Cadwallader], the whole bill had former members of that first wave of emo revival bands.) Thin Lips were excellent, and definitely a great match for Hop Along. They're fronted by former Dangerous Ponies singer Chrissy Tashjian and feature other members of that band as well, and they nail the kind of pop punk-inspired indie rock that's having a bit of a moment lately (think Swearin', Joyce Manor, All Dogs, etc). They stand out though, particularly because Chrissy's a distinct singer and has the kind of powerhouse voice that really soars over the rest of the band.

Finally, Hop Along came on. Hop Along have long been the band that even as an opener always had a great crowd there singing every word, and with the steady rise their once-underrated 2012 record Get Disowned has been on over the past three years, it was a pretty triumphant thing to see them now as the headliner of their second of two sold-out shows in the city. And they sounded great (if not better) than ever. Most of the new record rocks a little harder than Get Disowned, with the band's folkier tendencies remaining more in the songwriting than in the overall sound, and other than Frances Quinlan's one solo song towards the end of the set, last night's show was also very much in that rocking mode.

Frances' voice, which goes from delicate singing to an aggressive rasp without warning, was the star of the show as always (Vulture recently suggested it may be the best voice in rock music today and it's not hard to see why). But the not-so-secret weapon of the new songs is Joe Reinhart's guitar. Whether he's throwing in tricky leads over a song's chorus or ripping classic rock-style solos, his playing is as much a highlight of the show as Frances' singing.

Seeing as Painted Shut just came out, it made sense that last night's show leaned a lot heavier on those songs, but they did of course save room for some old favorites. And as good as the new record is, there's only a handful of songs by any indie rock band that consistently get a whole room going like "Tibetan Pop Stars." Pitchfork recently said that song "should be etched in titanium and shot into outer space for safekeeping." If you've seen a crowd react to Hop Along playing it, you'd probably think that idea isn't half bad.

Pictures of last night's show continue below...

Continue reading "Hop Along celebrated 'Painted Shut' with 2 NYC shows (pics from Baby's All Right w/ Thin Lips & Quit)"

FYF

LA's annual FYF Fest returns August 22 & 23, and today the lineup was announced. It includes Morrissey, The Jesus & Mary Chain, D'Angelo, Frank Ocean, Bloc Party, Run the Jewels, Deerhunter, Belle & Sebastian, Spiritualized, Dinosaur Jr, Mac DeMarco, Joyce Manor, Title Fight, METZ, Cold Cave, Melody's Echo Chamber, Battles, Neon Indian, Alvvays, La Femme, Mikal Cronin, Hop Along and more.

Tickets go on sale Friday (5/8) at noon PDT. Full lineup below...

Continue reading "FYF Fest 2015 lineup (Morrissey, Jesus & Mary Chain, Frank Ocean, D'Angelo, Dinosaur Jr, Spiritualized, Bloc Party, more)"

by Andrew Sacher

photo: Hop Along at BV-RBSS show at Baby's in January (more by Ryan Muir)
Hop Along

Hop Along have already shared three songs off their upcoming Painted Shut (due 5/5 via Saddle Creek), and now the whole thing is here a week early. As those singles hinted, this new album builds on its excellent predecessor, 2012's Get Disowned, adding in classic rock-style guitar solos (thanks to recently-added guitarist Joe Reinhart) and bigger production (thanks to Sonic Youth/Dinosaur Jr producer John Agnello) to their already-sharp sound. At the forefront of it all though, is Frances Quinlan, one of the most distinct singers and lyricists in indie rock right now. It's been a great year for powerful, unpolished indie rock albums (thanks to Title Fight, Waxahatchee, Speedy Ortiz, and still more), and Painted Shut is no exception. Listen in full below, via Spin.

Hop Along's tour has them in NYC soon for two shows with Thin Lips, May 5 at Rough Trade also with Crying (tickets) and May 10 at Baby's All RIght (tickets).

Full tour schedule and album stream below...

Continue reading "Hop Along streaming new album 'Painted Shut' (listen)"

by Andrew Sacher

Thin Lips

One of the openers on Hop Along's upcoming tour is their Philly neighbors Thin Lips, who play both NYC shows. Thin Lips are a good match, because both bands share a knack for crunchy power pop and powerhouse vocals. Thin Lips singer Chrissy Tashjian used to front the band Dangerous Ponies (maybe you caught them in Brooklyn with Laura Stevenson and Lady Lamb?), who recorded a lot of their stuff with producer Joe Reinhart (now of Hop Along). Fellow Dangerous Ponies members Kyle Pulley and Michael Tashjian (Chrissy's brother) back her in Thin Lips, and Michael and a couple other DP members are now in The Weaks, who collaborated with Hop Along singer Frances Quinlan and also named a song after her (which is also a Nirvana pun).

Their debut EP, Divorce Year, is due next week (5/5) via Seagreen Records (pre-order), and -- perhaps not surprisingly, given their history playing together -- it has Thin Lips sounding like a seasoned and confident band right out of the gate. A full stream premieres below.

Thin Lips and Hop Along will hit NYC on May 5 at Rough Trade, which also has Crying on the bill, and May 10 at Baby's All Right. Tickets for Rough Trade and Baby's are still available. Thin Lips have other dates without Hop Along too. All are listed, with the EP stream, below.

Continue reading "Thin Lips (ex-Dangerous Ponies) opening for Hop Along and playing other dates (stream their new EP)"

by Andrew Sacher

photo: Hop Along at BV-RBSS at Baby's in January (more by Ryan Muir)
Hop Along

Hop Along already released "Waitress" and "Powerful Man" from their upcoming album Painted Shut (due 5/5 via Saddle Creek), and today they offered up a third track, "Texas Funeral." Hop Along singer Frances Quinlan has one of the most distinct voices in current indie rock, thanks in no small part to the way she goes from softer singing to a raspy yell without any warning or interest in holding anything back. When she brings that yell in on "Texas Funeral"'s chorus of "NONE of this is gonna happen to me!" it's the same type of cathartic release you get from "Stranger in India, I'm gonna be creepin' on you so hard!" or "Meteor, meteor, make me young!" or any of the other lines you can't go to a Hop Along show without hearing the crowd shout. And like the last single, this one's got another ripping solo from Joe Reinhart, whose guitar playing is as important an element of the new record as Frances' voice. Listen below, via Stereogum.

Hop Along's tour hits NYC on May 5 at Rough Trade (tickets) and May 10 at Baby's All Right (tickets). As mentioned, Thin Lips are opening both of those shows, and since we last spoke, Crying were added to the Rough Trade show. Hop Along also recently added Field Mouse and Lithuania (mem Dr. Dog) to several other dates on the tour.

Thin Lips also have a new release coming on May 5, Divorce Year, on Seagreen Records. Its new single "Nothing Weird" came out recently via Stereogum, and you can also hear that below, along with the new Hop Along song and updated list of tour dates.

Continue reading "Hop Along share new song "Texas Funeral"; Thin Lips, Field Mouse, Crying & others opening on their tour"

by Andrew Sacher

photo: Hop Along at BV-RBSS at Baby's in January (more by Ryan Muir)
Hop Along

Hop Along have put out a second single from their new album Painted Shut, which is due May 5 via Saddle Creek (their first for the label). The new one's called "Powerful Man" and it's got choppy, crunchy Weezer-esque verses, plus a classic-sounding guitar solo from Joe Reinhart. It's also a dark song, lyrically. Singer Frances Quinlan told The FADER it's about witnessing a boy getting beaten up by his father in front of a school when she was 18. Listen below.

The band's tour hits NYC on May 5 at Rough Trade (tickets) and May 10 at Baby's All Right (tickets). Both are with Thin Lips. Updated tour dates are listed below...

Continue reading "Hop Along share "Powerful Man" from 'Painted Shut' (stream)"

by Andrew Sacher

photo: Hop Along at BV-RBSS at Baby's in January (more by Ryan Muir)
Hop Along

Philly's Hop Along recently signed to Saddle Creek for their new album, and now that album's officially been announced. It's called Painted Shut and will be out on May 5 via their new label home (pre-order), and the first single "Waitress" is out now. They recorded it with John Agnello, who knows how give rock bands a clear sound that's still raw and powerful (he's worked with Sonic Youth and Dinosaur Jr, for example), and that's exactly how "Waitress" sounds. It's up there with the harder-hitting rockers on Painted Shut's great predecessor Get Disowned, and with Frances Quinlan's distinct voice, it's unmistakably Hop Along. You can and should check it out below (via Noisey).

Hop Along have several dates with The War on Drugs coming up, and after that they'll go on a headlining tour which hits NYC on May 5 at Rough Trade with Thin Lips and May 10 at Baby's All Right. Tickets for Rough Trade go on sale Friday (3/13) at noon, and tickets for Baby's should be on sale soon.

All dates are listed, with the new song stream, below...

Continue reading "Hop Along announce new album 'Painted Shut,' share first single "Waitress," expand tour (2 NYC dates included)"

by Andrew Sacher

Glocca Morra
Glocca Morra

Philly emo revivalists Glocca Morra are calling it quits this year, but before they go out they've got two new songs and a farewell tour. Their final 7" is on Ice Age Records and it's more straight punk than some of the more Kinsella-style stuff they became known for. Listen to both tracks below, via AV Club.

The tour happens this May and brings the band to NYC on May 29 at Shea Stadium. All dates are with Canadian punks Greys (who played NYC on Friday), and the Boston, NYC and Philly shows are with Brooklyn's LVL UP. All dates are listed on the tour flyer below.

Glocca Morra's Nate Dionne is one of the members in newer band Dogs on Acid, who released their first single last year and have now signed to Jade Tree for their debut LP which is due out this summer. The band also includes former Algernon Cadwallader members Nick Tazza and Joe Reinhardt, the latter of whom is now also in Hop Along. Dogs on Acid have four Philly shows coming up, but nothing in NYC at the moment. While you wait for the new album, revisit last year's single below.

Nate Dionne was also in the band Snowing, whose singer John Galm more recently went solo and put out the depressing 2014 album Sky of No Stars. John's on a solo tour right now, and it hits NYC tonight (3/8) at 603 Bushwick Ave (upstairs) with Trace Mountains (another project of LVL UP's Dave Benton) and Bethlehem Steel. All John's dates, and a stream of his recent album, below.

Continue reading "Glocca Morra streaming final 7" & going on farewell tour with Greys & LVL UP; John Galm on tour; Dogs On Acid LP coming"

photo: TWOD at Bowery Ballroom in 2014 (more by PSquared)
TWOD

The War on Drugs, whose 2014 album Lost in the Dream did very well in countless year-end lists and on the Pazz & Jop Poll (we loved it too), have announced another tour in support of it. We already knew they'd be at a few festivals, including Coachella, Bonnaroo and NYC's Governors Ball, and now a ton of club dates have been announced too. Most US dates are with another great Philly band, Hop Along, who have a new album on Saddle Creek coming and who just played our Red Bull Sound Select show this week.

No NYC stops besides Governors Ball announced at the moment. All dates are listed, with the video of their recent Fallon performance, below...

Continue reading "The War on Drugs announce tour with Hop Along (dates)"

photos by Ryan Muir, words by Pink Baby

Hop Along / Beach Slang / Ryley Walker / Aye Nako
Hop Along
Beach Slang
Ryley Walker
Aye Nako

The latest BrooklynVegan-curated installment of Red Bull Sound Select happened at Brooklyn's Baby's All Right last night (1/13) with Hop Along, Beach Slang, Ryley Walker and Aye Nako.

The place was already pretty full before Aye Nako's opening set, and remained that way throughout the $3-with-RSVP show. The local punk band played a few favorites off their 2013 debut LP, Unleash Yourself, and like they've been doing lately, took the chance to preview a handful of new ones. From the sounds of a couple of those, it looks like their next record may be a bit heavier than their debut. Looking forward to finding out.

Next up was Ryley Walker, the Chicago psychedelic folk singer, who's got a new LP on the way via Dead Oceans. He flew in for this show. It was just him on acoustic guitar and vocals, accompanied by a standup bassist, and while that could seem out of place on this punk/indie rock bill, Ryley was too intense not to fit in. Rather than performing as a hushed folk singer, Ryley howled and had no trouble filling that venue with his huge voice. He and the bassist are also highly talented players and fed off each other like crazy on their extended, mesmerizing jams. Ryley will be back at Baby's soon as part of his tour with Kevin Morby.

After Ryley it was back to the rock, with the first of the two co-headliners, Beach Slang, taking the stage. It was clear that plenty of people were there for them -- this was maybe the most amount of people at once singing along and pushing around to Beach Slang we've seen yet. They gave us one new song, "Ride the Wild Haze," which sounded as awesome as all their others and will most likely appear on their debut full length, due out at some point this year. Other than that we got all eight songs from their two EPs, sounding as cathartic and downright fun as always. As of today, those EPs are also available on one cassette via Business Casual Records. Catch Beach Slang again on tour with Cursive.

Lastly, fellow Philly band Hop Along wrapped up the night, and also had the place full of people who were going nuts and yelling every word. We got the live staples from 2012's Get Disowned that we usually do like "Kids on the Boardwalk," "Young and Happy!" and "Tibetan Pop Stars," the 2013 one-off single "Sister Cities," and some new ones from their upcoming LP on Saddle Creek. The old favorites just seem to get better every time we hear them, and those new songs sound great too, which is making the anticipation for this new album pretty high. Keep your eyes out for that.

All door money went to CancerCare. Thanks to all the bands, Red Bull, Baby's, and everyone who came out to what was an epic night of music (DJ sets between bands by Andrew Sacher included). If you were one of the first 100 in, did you enjoy the free sweet potato fries? We hope you also grabbed one of the free limited edition posters on the way out.

The next two NYC Red Bull Sound Select shows will take place February 10th (curated by Popgun Presents) and March 10th (curated by Afropunk). Both are at Baby's again. After that BrooklynVegan is up again with an April 14th show at a TBD venue. No lineups for any of those shows have been announced yet.

More pictures from the show (including portraits of the bands) below...

Continue reading "Hop Along, Beach Slang, Ryley Walker & Aye Nako played the BV-RBSS show at Baby's All Right (pics)"

by Andrew Sacher

photo: Modern Baseball @ BK Bazaar in 2014 (more by Mimi Hong)
Modern Baseball

Modern Baseball, Beach Slang, Spraynard, Hurry, The Weaks and Marietta are releasing a 6-way split called Strength In Weakness on February 3 via Lame-O Records, which will benefit United Cerebral Palsy. Modern Baseball's contribution, "Alpha Kappa Fall of Troy The Movie Part Deux," just premiered over at Billboard, and it's a '90s-style rocker that's scrappier than anything on last year's great You're Gonna Miss it All. Check it out below.

Both Modern Baseball and Beach Slang will be at this year's Skate & Surf Fest in Asbury Park, but you can catch Beach Slang in NYC much sooner than that. Their co-headlining, BrooklynVegan-curated Red Bull Sound Select show with Hop Along happens on Tuesday (1/13) at Baby's All Right with Aye Nako and Ryley Walker. I'll also be DJing between sets. That's $3 at the door with RSVP or $10 without. No advance sales, and all door money is going to be donated to CancerCare.

That show is three days after the BV-presented Slingshot Dakota / Runaway Brother / Crazy & the Brains / Vasudeva show (1/10) which is also at Baby's All Right.

Modern Baseball song stream and EP tracklist below...

Continue reading "Modern Baseball release song from 6-way split; Hop Along, Beach Slang, Aye Nako & Ryley Walker play BV-RBSS soon"

Ryley Walker

Folk singer and guitar great Ryley Walker has signed to Dead Oceans (Phosphorescent, Tallest Man on Earth) for the followup to 2014's All Kinds of You. It's called Primrose Green and will be out on the label on March 31. If you caught Ryley at CMJ this past October, you may have seen him perform the title track. NYC Taper has a recording of that, which you can listen to, along with the studio version, below. Popmatters caught him performing the song on his tour with Cloud Nothings:

The 24-year old guitarist was pleasing to watch and the instrumental beds the guys laid down were gorgeous enough that the songs almost didn't need lyrics. When Walker introduced the song, "Primrose Green", I thought of a similarly-named Hunger Games character, but he explained the tune was named after a booze-concoction he used to drink before advising the mostly under-age audience against drinking.
As discussed, Ryley also has dates coming up including a tour with Kevin Morby which hits Baby's All Right on March 15 (tickets), as well as another Baby's show happening much sooner. He plays the next BrooklynVegan-curated Red Bull Sound Select show with Hop Along, Beach Slang and Aye Nako at Baby's on Tuesday, January 13. That's $3 at the door with RSVP or $10 without. No advance sales, and all door money is going to be donated to CancerCare.

All dates are listed, with the new song stream, below...

Continue reading "Ryley Walker announces new LP on Dead Oceans (stream a track); BV-RBSS show w/ Hop Along & Beach Slang is soon"

Hop Along
Hop Along
Photo: Hop Along @ BK Bazaar on Halloween (more by Amanda Hatfield)

Beach Slang
Photo: Beach Slang @ BV-CMJ 2014 (more by Amanda Hatfield)

The Red Bull Sound Select series of shows is continuing into 2015, and the next BrooklynVegan-curated installment happens January 13 at Baby's All Right. The show will be co-headlined by two killer Philly bands, Hop Along and Beach Slang, and joining them will be NYC punks Aye Nako and Chicago psych-folk singer/guitarist Ryley Walker, who will be flying in for this show and playing as a duo with a bassist. We couldn't be more excited for this lineup.

Doors at 7pm. Show at 8pm, and like most RBSS shows it's $3 at the door with RSVP, or $10 without. No advanced sales, and all door money is going to be donated to CancerCare, an organization that provides"telephone, online and face-to-face counseling, support groups, education, publications and financial and co-payment assistance." Even if you RSVP, entry is first come, first served, so get there on time to guarantee you get in!

Check out some videos/song streams of all four bands below...

Continue reading "Hop Along, Beach Slang, Aye Nako & Ryley Walker playing next BV RBSS show @ Baby's, a CancerCare benefit (RSVP = $3 entry)"

photos by Amanda Hatfield, words by Andrew Sacher

Hop Along / Mitski
Hop Along
Mitski

One of the many live music options in NYC on Halloween was the Brooklyn Night Bazaar show with Diarrhea Planet, Hop Along, Mitski and Desert Sharks. (Girlpool were supposed to play too but dropped off.) Amanda and I showed up for Hop Along and Mitski, the latter of whom was playing solo at this show. The last time I saw her she was backed by half of LVL UP, but she was just intense with no more than a guitar. Mitski doesn't strip it down to acoustic mode or anything for her solo shows though. She played an electric that was thick and distorted, sounding like a sludgy Angel Olsen. For the last song, she put the guitar down until it was feeding back, and just sang over the noise.

Hop Along's set was fresh off the announcement that they've signed to Saddle Creek for a new album that will be out in 2015. They debuted a song off that album which was a nice dose of crunchy power pop. It sounded different for them, and like it's gonna be a good one. They also played plenty of favorites from Get Disowned, and maybe it was the late set time or Halloween putting everyone in a good mood, but it was the wildest crowd for them I've seen a while.

More pictures of both Hop Along and Mitski, and a video, below...

Continue reading "Hop Along & Mitski @ Brooklyn Night Bazaar (pics, video)"

Hop Along at Wicker Park Fest 2014 (more by Jeff Ryan)
Hop Along

Hop Along have been playing new songs live for a while now, and they've finally announced that they've signed to Saddle Creek for the followup to their great 2012 album Get Disowned. Congrats guys! That makes them labelmates with Bright Eyes, Cursive, The Thermals and more. The album's due out in spring of 2015 and they're entering the studio this week with producer John Agnello, who's work with Sonic Youth, Dinosaur Jr, Kurt Vile, Cymbals Eat Guitars and others makes him a great fit for Hop Along.

Hop Along have a couple dates coming up, including a free Halloween show at Brooklyn Night Bazaar with Diarrhea Planet, Girlpool, Mitski and more, and a New Year's Eve show in Philly.

Revisit Get Disowned below...

Continue reading "Hop Along sign to Saddle Creek, releasing new LP in 2015"

photos by Chris La Putt

Girlpool at BV day party at Baby's All Right - 10/25/14
Girlpool

LA duo Girlpool played about ten shows right before and during CMJ, and they'll be back in the area next week to play NYC and Long Island on their tour with Jenny Lewis. They must really love it here, because now they've added yet another show. They were added to the Halloween show at Brooklyn Night Bazaar which already has a stacked lineup of Diarrhea Planet, Hop Along, Mitski and more. That show is free and includes a costume contest ($500 cash prize), face painting and more. Sounds like a pretty good way to spend Halloween.

One of Girlpool's many CMJ shows was our Saturday day party. We already posted pictures of that show and we've got another set of Girlpool in this post. More, with their updated list of dates, below...

Continue reading "Girlpool added to Halloween at BK Bazaar w/ Diarrhea Planet, Hop Along & Mitski (updated dates & more CMJ pics)"

Rivers and Frances (via Hop Along Instagram)
Frances

Weezer brought their current tour playing their new album in full to Philly for a show at the Trocadero this Saturday (10/25). At that show, Hop Along singer Frances Quinlan joined the band on stage to duet with Rivers Cuomo on "Go Away" (Best Coast's Bethany Cosentino sings with him on the album version." WXPN's The Key spoke to Frances about it:

She tells us she was on tour opening for mewithoutYou when she found out about the opportunity. "I was literally hopping up and down at a rest stop outside Baltimore when our booking agent, Merrick, told me the news."

Quinlan says she was nervous upon arriving at The Troc and watching Weezer soundcheck from backstage, but the band and the crew were total sweethearts, which put her at ease. "Rivers had me rehearse the song backstage with him and Brian [Bell, guitarist]," she says. "We ran through it once and an hour later I sang it onstage with them. It's the craziest thing that's ever happened to me."

Weezer's tour hits NYC at Bowery Ballroom tonight (10/27) which is sold out. Will any guests be there tonight too?

Hop Along will also celebrate Halloween in NYC at Brooklyn Night Bazaar for a free show with wild garage rockers Diarrhea Planet headlining, plus Desert Sharks, Mitski and Banker$. They're also promising "costume cash prizes, light show, face painting, art debut and fun." Hop Along also play New Year's Eve in Philly.

Watch the video of Frances and Weezer below...

Continue reading "Frances from Hop Along sang on stage with Weezer (who play NYC tonight); HA playing Halloween w/ Diarrhea Planet"

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