Tag Archives: alternative rock

Make Listening to These Great Up & Coming Bands Your New Years Resolution!

Do you think all the best rock music was made before the year 2000? Have you jumped ship with rock and hopped on the EDM bandwagon? Do you not have a New Year’s resolution? Well, before you pick up that latest Dead Mou-Five (Did I spell that right?) record, how about I give you a new years resolution.. and that is find a new up and coming band that you can’t get enough of!

It’s actually a little easier than you think, and I’ll make it even easier for you by giving you a list of ten of the best up and coming bands to check out if you haven’t already (and if you have, good job doing your homework!):

Black Map
Mark Engles: Guitar
Chris Robyn: Drums
Ben Flanagan: Vocals/Bass

Black Map is a three-piece alternative hard rock band hailing from San Fransisco, CA. Loud and boisterous, Black Map are a hard rock force with a heavy, clean sound. In 2014 Alternative Nation reviewed their album And We Explode… giving it a 9/10.

“This album practically holds every characteristic necessary for an alternative rock musical masterpiece, which should come as to no surprise.”
Alternative Nation

Black Map have supported Chevelle on tour and have also played various shows with the likes of ††† (Crosses), Tombs, Pelican, and Kill Devil Hill.
Essential Tracks: “Code”, “Chinaski”, “I’m Just the Driver”


Dinosaur Eyelids
Evan Staats – Vocals
Scott Staats – Bass
Patrick McKnight – Guitar
Mark Leone – Drums

Dinosaur Eyelids are a four piece band based out of New Brunswick, NJ. With a bit of a grungy and progressive sound, Dinosaur Eyelids are excellent songwriters with many tracks that can take you on a journey. “The LIDS” have opened for Parlor Mob and shared the stage with Dean Ween of Ween and have earned a reputation for their aggressive live performances.

Essential Tracks: “Further Down the River”, “21 Graham Salute”, “Answer In The Sky”


Everyday Losers
Dylan Seidel- Vocals/Guitar
Tyler Seidel- Guitar/Vocals
Danny Norton- Bass
Damian Baker- Drums

The Everyday Losers are a four piece band out of Washington, Indiana. They describe themselves as a band full of heavy riffs, powerful choruses, and frenetic live performances. They recently wrapped up a touring stint with Saliva in November and have also shared the stage with Jackyl, Smile Empty Soul, and Black Stone Cherry.   The Everyday Losers boast tracks that are both heavy and melodic, such as the standout “Here We Are Now”.

Essential Tracks: “Outta My Head”, “Hate You”, “Here We Are Now”

Reverb Nation

Steve Weston – Guitar/Pedals/Vocals
Lee ‘meatarm’ Yates – Bass
Dave Pankhurst – Drums

High/Low are a four piece band out of Essex, UK. The band’s entire catalog is bursting with catchy, heavy, alternative rock tracks. All the elements seem to perfectly blend together to form a unique brand of rock music that works more on a high level, not a low one (ba dum tiss). High/Low have a much anticipated new album being released on January 29th, 2016.  Get an exclusive free download from the new album entitled “MONO” here and you can hear their new single entitled “Mould” below.

Essential Tracks: ‘Mould”, “Beef Back”, “Spy Eye”


Minus Cube
Joe Weinstock – Guitars
Glyn Rolmanis – Drums
Michael Martin – Vocals

Minus Cube is a three piece band with a unique setup in that Michael is based in the USA, and Joe and Glyn are based in the UK, but that distance hasn’t stopped the band from creating one of the most unique sounds in rock today.  A listener can hear the influences from bands like Tool, Alice In Chains and Soundgarden, particularly in tracks like “Everything” and Trance Decay”.  Minus Cube have a new album planned for 2016 entitled The Butterfly Effect, watch the teaser here.

Essential Tracks: “Everything”, “Trance Decay”, “Catalyst”


New Oceans
David Downs –Vocals/Guitar
Rob Miller – Bass
John Kehoe –Drums

New Oceans is a three piece band out of Chicago, IL. Starting out as an industrial, electro-rock band, New Oceans have changed their style, releasing a unique high energy punk/grunge album entitled Fuzzbuzz. Having the feel of early Seattle grunge while throwing in some of the most unique song progressions in modern rock, New Oceans have grown to be an innovative and exciting newcomer to the american rock scene.

Essential Tracks: “ADHD”, “She Lives in a Shack”, “Sun Drunk”


Nick Gray – Vocals/Guitar
Greg Nicholas – Drums/Vocals
Joe Gray – Bass/Vocals

Noiseheads are a three piece band from Pensacola, FL, but are soon transitioning to Greensboro, NC. Alternative Nation hailed Noiseheads as “One of America’s most promising young rock bands,” and with catchy radio friendly hard rock tunes, Noiseheads may be one of those bands that will ensure the world that rock is still alive and well. The band is influenced by many of the greats such as Pearl Jam and Nirvana, but sound like no other. Dave Grohl once said the intensity that Kurt Cobain had in his voice sounded like he was grinding nails in his throat when he performed, and this comparison is also the only way to describe Nick Gray’s vocals, throw in a stellar rhythm section from Greg and Joe and yes it is true, Noiseheads is one of America’s most promising young rock bands, and they may just be a band that brings rock music back from the underground.  Noiseheads may be taking a bit of a break with the move, but have been busy recently, including releasing a video for their track “Fellow Man” in November.

Essential Tracks: “Fellow Man”, “Expectations”, “Pretty Hate Song Pt. 2”, “Annie”


Soul Inclination
Shashank Bhatnagar – Vocals/Rhythm Guitars
Puneet Vohra – Lead Guitars/Vocals
Ashish Sharma – Bass
Nishant Hagjer – Drums/Vocals

Soul Inclination is a four piece band from New Delhi, India. Though they have recently gone through some lineup changes, the two tracks they released in 2015 were fantastic. So great in fact that their second single “Not a Loser” was the most requested song on Alternative Nation Radio in 2015. Influenced by bands like Pearl Jam and Alice in Chains, Soul Inclination has the makings of a modern rock force.

Essential Tracks: “Not a Loser”, “I Am Alone”


The Burning of Rome
Adam Traub – Vocals/Keys/Guitar
Joe Aguilar – Guitar/Vocals
Aimee Jacobs – Keys/Glockenspiel/Vocals
Keveen Baudouin – Bass/Vocals
Danny King – Drums

The Burning of Rome are a five piece band from the Los Angeles and San Diego, CA area. Describing themselves as death-pop, they have the elements of a band who will eventually garner a very large cult following. Their use of both male and female vocal leads gives them a diversity that not many modern rock bands possess.  They released their second album Year of the Ox in 2014 which included three tracks that were among the most requested on Alternative Nation Radio in 2015.

Essential Tracks: “Better Than He”, “Cowboy’s and Cut Cigars”, “Year of the Ox”


Dean – Guitar/Vocals
Marc – Bass
Nils – Drums

Tidalwave is a three piece band from Berlin, Germany. Their first release, a four song self-titled EP released in Feburary 2015, was pure melodic alternative rock bliss. Influenced by bands like Foo Fighters, Deftones, and Muse, Tidalwave have the ability to create a smart and cohesive sound unlike no other. With a new EP entitled “1992” being released in early 2016 (watch the teaser), Tidalwave is sure to turn even more heads in the coming months.

Essential Tracks: “Find Myself”, “Rx”, “Solace”



Hear all the best from all these great up and coming bands plus many more at www.rockshowradio.net and www.alternativenation.net/radio.  What are some up and coming bands that you can’t get enough of?  Feel free to share them in the comments section below.

Italian Grunge Band Shame Hits Seattle

Shame, the well loved grunge band from Milan, Italy, came to Seattle, WA a couple of weeks ago to play some of their original music. Alternative Nation was able to check them out as they performed at one of their scheduled venues in town.

The music was fresh, engaging, and hair thrashing and still had the sound of the grunge era, we all miss. This music was something Seattle craved to have back and never let out of its grips again. When they started playing, I could see why they are popular in Milan. As from the get-go, my head from bobbing up and down, back and forth to the beat of the drums, and the screams of the guitar. I was now hooked.

After they played, I was able to speak to Shame’s front man Andrea Paglione, asking him just a few questions.

When did Shame start out?

We started in 1996 as a teenage power-trio mostly influenced by the Seattle Sound.

You guys have had some experience in Seattle, why is it that you keep coming back?

We feel at home in Seattle, and Seattle has opened their arms to us and we feel loved. We want to stay here, we have friends here, which is now our family too.

Do you have a discography list?    

Yes we absolutely do!

SAD – EP released in 2002

Gone-LP released in 2008

Induction of Penitence-EP released in 2009 and

Entropia- LP released in 2014    


Andrea also told me that they are working on their next album, hopefully to be out not too far into the future. To answer that one question you might have, yes, their music is recorded in the English language.

Band members are as follows; Andrea Paglione, lead vocals/guitar, Pino Foderaro, guitar, Marco Riboldi, backing vocals/bass guitar and Claudio Ciaccia, drums.            

Check out their latest LP Entropia, which is available on iTunes and Amazon You can also find out more about their band through their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/shametheband

From their latest LP, enjoy Apocalypto


Foo Fighters As Yet Untitled Eighth Album Confirmed for November Release On Roswell/RCA


“This is a musical map of America.”-Dave Grohl

Nasty Little Man, the Public relations team, recently released a press release stating the following on the Foo Fighters 8th upcoming – and untitled album, for a release in November.

Viewers watching the 29th Annual Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony this weekend on HBO were treated to a surprise teaser preview of the new HBO series Foo Fighters: Sonic Highways. The sneak peek-now viewable at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f-z8A9P5ziA –features an exclusive Dave Grohl mission statement accompanied by the first passage of music to be unveiled from the as-yet-untitled eighth FF album — out November on Roswell/RCA — and a fleeting glimpse of the HBO series documenting the eight-city odyssey of the record’s creation.

I’ve pulled up the family tree of American music and exposed its roots to find inspiration for the next Foo Fighters album,” says Grohl of the band’s most ambitious effort to date. Grohl, Taylor Hawkins, Nate Mendel, Chris Shiflett and Pat Smear tapped into the musical heritage and cultural fabric of each of these cities — Austin, Chicago, Los Angeles, Nashville, New Orleans, New York, Seattle and Washington DC — basing themselves at a legendary studio integral to the unique history and character of each location. One song was recorded in each city, all featuring local legends sitting in, with every lyric written in an unprecedented experimental style: Dave held off on putting down words until the last day of each session, so as to be inspired by the experiences, interviews for the HBO series, and other local personalities who became part of the process.

If Grohl’s 2013 feature film directorial debut, the universally acclaimed Grammy-winning Sound City, was a celebration of the human element in the creation and recording of music, Foo Fighters: Sonic Highways is, in its director’s words, “a chronicling of a journey to unravel the fabric of our musical identity… not only the making of our most ambitious album… this is Sound City on steroids.” Each episode delves into the singular regional identity of each city, how each region shaped these musicians in their formative years, and in turn the impact those people had on the cultural fabric of their hometowns. Dave’s unequaled passion for both the music he creates and the music that inspires its creation once again fuels the type of honest and trusting musician-to-musician exchange that made Sound City a critical and commercial smash.

Premiering on the eve of Foo Fighters 20th anniversary, Foo Fighters: Sonic Highways aims to “give back” to the next generation of young musicians. As interviewee Buddy Guy puts it, “Everything comes from what’s come before.”

Foo Fighters: Sonic Highways premieres this fall on HBO. For further information and updates, including where and when the series will be broadcast outside the U.S., sign up at http://foofighters.com.

Foo Fighters: Sonic Highways is directed by Dave Grohl for Roswell Films, a division of Roswell Records, the label that releases Foo Fighters’ music; written by Mark Monroe and Dave Grohl. Executive produced by Dave Grohl, James A. Rota, John Ramsay. The series is produced for HBO by Roswell Films and Therapy Content, in association with Worldwide Pants.

Shonen Knife’s Naoko Talks Influences, New Album “Overdrive”, Nirvana, Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame In AlternativeNation.net Interview

Over the holidays, I contacted the Osaka Japanese punk rock trio known as Shonen Knife. Shonen Knife started out as just a hobby between sisters Naoko (Guitar/ vocals) and Atsuko (drums) Yamano and Michie Nakatami (bass).

Their sound could be described as “The Ramones fornicating with The Beatles while singing songs about peace and happiness with The Grateful Dead.” The band keeps an upbeat image throughout their songs as well as their videos, which is something of a rebellion towards their own culture, in which a female’s role was to follow a strict path.

They soon gathered a following most notably from the Alternative Rock boom in the late 80’s/ early 90’s from bands such as Sonic Youth’s Thurston Moore and Nirvana’s Kurt Cobain, who both cited Shonen Knife’s work as influential to their own song writing. With over a 30 year history of the band, I had the chance to conduct an interview over email with the only founding member left (due to line-up changes), vocalist/guitarist Naoko Yamano.

In the interview we discussed the band’s very long tenure, Naoko’s influences, and Shonen Knife’s new album, how they thought of the name “Shonen Knife”, lyrics to the songs, and differences between the American/ Canadian music cultures towards the Japanese culture. Here is what Naoko, vocalist and guitarist of Shonen Knife had to say:

Interview conducted by Osty Gale on January 6th, 2014.

What was it like growing up in Japan in the early 60’s and 70’s?

Naoko: “The 60’s and 70’s were very good years for rock music. Many great bands like The Beatles or KISS were around. For daily life, I grew up in the downtown area and I could buy records in town and listened to radio a lot. There are not so much differences between now and back then except for the Internet.”

Naoko, as you’re the only original member in the band, has your outlook on the band changed over the years since you first formed the band in 1981?

Naoko: “Shonen Knife is continuing to grow. The present lineup is the best lineup in our 30 years as a band.”

Who has been the biggest influence on your career, both musically and non-musically?

Naoko: “Musically, it is The Beatles, as for non-musically, I don’t have any special person.”

How did you come up with the band name “Shonen Knife”?

Naoko: “When we got together as a band, I just happened to see a pencil-sharpening knife with the brand name “shonen knife” stamped on the side, and I thought, “That’s it!” The “shonen” part means “boy”, so it’s kind of cute, and “knife” sounds exciting, so I thought “Shonen Knife” was perfect for our band name and sound.”

What are some contrasts to the mainstream rock songs in Japan to the mainstream rock songs in Canada/ United States?

Naoko: “J-POP’s lyrics are Japanese and the basic melody lines are different. I can’t explain well, though. You can try to listen to J-POP songs through the internet or YouTube. I like rock songs in Canada/ United States.”

With a new album coming out in 2014 of the New Year, what sort of themes and subjects will be on this album? Can we expect a more 60’s-styled Surf Rock album like 2012’s Pop Tune?

Naoko: “The concept and the subjects are not decided. I’m still in the process of writing songs but I’d like to make an album which is enjoyed and loved by many people.”

Does the new album have a name yet?

Naoko: “Not yet. I have to think of it.” [Note: New album is now titled as “Overdrive”]

When does the band usually agree on the album name, track listing, etc.…?

Naoko: “I decide everything by myself. The other band members are supporting me a lot.”

Your songs aren’t typical “songs” in regards to themes such as; love, politics, losing friends or gaining fame. Is this approach to writing themes within your music the conventional style in Japan, or is it centric to your band / other rock acts in Japan?

Naoko: “I don’t want to write metaphysical lyrics. My lyrics are simple and easy to understand. I just like that. I don’t listen to J-POP music and I don’t know the lyrics so much.”

Have you ever thought about writing a memoir or a book regarding the history of Shonen Knife? If so, what would you want it to be called?

Naoko: “We are still on the way to become more popular. It might be better to make a history book after we get famous.”

As a fan of your band, Shonen Knife, and Nirvana I would like to ask if there were there any interesting things that happened on that 1993 tour you did with Nirvana and The Breeders?

Naoko: “The tour was massive and the dressing rooms of Nirvana and us were far apart. There weren’t so many chances to talk with the members of Nirvana. I just remember that there were many people at their dressing rooms and catering cargo was touring with the bands.”

What are your feelings towards Nirvana being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame?

Naoko: “That’s very nice. Nirvana is a great band.”

Looking back on the years of your band, did you ever think you would be touring for over thirty years? What are your feelings towards this?

Naoko: “I’ve never thought I would be continuing the band so long but I don’t look back and I can’t imagine that the thought of “I used to be in this band”. I’m just going to keep making music.”

What has been your biggest challenge as a band? Have you been able to overcome that challenge? If so, how did you overcome it?

Naoko: “Everything for Shonen Knife is the biggest challenge for me. Every show, every recording…”

When you performed in Canada for the first time, what were some things you did not like about the country and what were some things you really did like about our country?

Naoko: “I love Canada a lot. People are kind and so nice to us. Our audience in Canada is very friendly and they rock.”

What was the most impressive show the band has played in 2013, to you?

Naoko: “It was on September 29th at “Dingwalls”, in Camden, London. The show was request set. It was so fun. I wrote a blog about it here:


 In 10 years, do you think Shonen Knife will still be around or will you take up your time to do other things within music or writing?

Naoko: “I can’t imagine. I’m occupied with the present activities of the band.”

In your own words, what makes an amazing writer, whether it is musical writing or just a writer in general?

Naoko: “Creativity.”

What are some new bands and artists that you’re listening to now?

Naoko: “Hmm… I’m studying ’70’s bands now. Please introduce “new” interesting bands to me.”

What advice do you have for people who want to form their own bands?

Naoko: “Keep on rockin’!”

AlternativeNation.net’s Review Of Cults’ “Static”

With their sophomore album Static, Cults (comprised of former romantic couple Brian Oblivion and Madeline Follin) demonstrates that they have much more in common with classic alternative rock acts like Jesus and Mary Chain and My Bloody Valentine than with their contemporary peers Youth Lagoon and The Antlers. This time out, Cults turn up the fuzz, channel a little bit of The Raveonettes’ sonic shoegaze, and attempt to rise to the level of the aforementioned classic acts, and they actually get pretty close to do doing so.

Much ado has been made over the break up of Oblivion and Follin before the recording of this album and how much of an impact it had on the atmosphere and lyrics. No doubt, making an album with your former love has got to have its own unique challenges, but here those challenges (whatever they were for those two) worked towards the benefit of the listener. Static is drenched in high school break up melancholy that we all feel a resurgence of anytime we go through such an event. The difference here is that that high school melancholy is tinged with an adult snarkiness that only a seasoned heart breaker (or spurned lover) can conjure.

This snark seeps through to the surface on songs like “So Far,” one of the album’s standout tracks. “And I wonder how you sleep at night/Your static is so far from me” Follin sings over Oblivion’s shimmering and enveloping guitar. High school prom slow dancer “Always Forever” is tinged with the same sarcasm, even when it isn’t apparent. How many high school prom dates are still together 10 years later, after all?

The album’s strongest track (which also appears on the Carrie remake soundtrack-speaking of proms gone bad), “I Can Hardly Make You Mine” brings the type of alt rock greatness that will guarantee Cults’ a junior album. It’s stomping beat, coupled with its driving guitar and bass support Follin’s lyrical exploration of love as crush or compulsion.

What really makes Cults’ sound so interesting and compelling a listen on Static though is their unabashed embracement of 60s Motown rhythms which are creepily skewed by Oblivion’s haunting David-Lynch-atmosphere-like guitar work and Follin’s super-innocence-laced-with-Hope-Sandoval-like-sexiness voice. There aren’t many bands that can pull off these kind of strange dichotomies, but Cults do it effortlessly. If these two can stick it out and keep making music together, there’s plenty more to look forward to from this band, regardless of the statuses of their love lives.

Overall score: 9.5 out of 10