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Vow of Volition Make the Final Round of the Battle for Warped Tour

The Vans Warped Tour was the first festival for many of us back in the day. As young'ns, it's likely we didn't necessarily think about all that went into figuring out the bands to book and play the whole shebang. Part of that process, at least locally, seems to be through a series "battle of the bands" style competitions specifically for landing a spot on the fest. Quite a few Portland bands have been furiously playing against one another for said spot, and djent/prog metal act Vow of Volition are one of the acts that made it to the finals.

Warped Tour was always the type of festival that included much in the realm of pop punk, punk punk, emo and metal, so Vow of Volition's advancement to the final round is no surprise. Their incredibly technical, at times jazzy metal stands out in Portland's pretty linear popular music scene, and is much worthy of the attention its getting.

Those that want to support Vow of Volition in driving home the permanent spot can go to the Battle for Warped Tour finals Saturday at the Hawthorne Theatre.





Big Cheese returns with new single, show at Art at the Footlight 07.25

Fans of Brooklyn’s garage rock quartet Big Cheese have something to look forward to this year: Wild to Be Born, a brand new record, has been announced by the group for a September 13th release. The band’s new single “Filthy Rich” is a dramatic sonic strut back into the busy Brooklyn music scene, a swagger-filled track with an opening guitar riff too cool to forget. The band’s last album Supersonic Nothing was making the rounds in 2016, spreading its Sonic Youth-influenced tunes and making a name for Big Cheese’s noisy brand of garage rock. Three years later the band has refined its sound, filtering out some of the noise, but not abandoning it - it bubbles up more subtly in the brand new track which also flashes enough grunge to excite '90s rock lovers. The band appears to have a big end of the year in store, but for now, it is business as usual as a performance at Art at the Footlight in Queens awaits on July 25th. We are premiering “Filthy Rich” for you below. - Rene Cobar





Bent Knee's Courtney Swain intrigues with solo record "Between Blood and Ocean"

Courtney Swain, the ever-active lead singer of the Boston-based group Bent Knee, released a solo record back in May and it takes a bite out of the New England music scene. Between Blood and Ocean is existential therapy via ethereal songs like “Snowflakes” and hard-charging alternative tracks like “I’d Kill.” Bleeding out the avant-indie influences that have helped shape Bent Knee, Swain deploys gritty guitar riffs, syncopated drum patterns, crushing electronic percussion, and tender piano melodies for a sound unlike anything else in music today. The songs were written during Swain’s stay in Martha’s Vineyard for a residency awarded by the Turkey Land Cove Foundation. The singer/songwriter thanks Asher Kurtz, Jed Lingat, Kyle Harris, and Tim Doherty for helping bring the album to life. Swain, the Providence local, has further stoked the fires of curiosity, intrigued, and innovated with this new entry. We are streaming the worldly-sounding “Sweet Snow” below. - Rene Cobar





New Music Video: "Weathersby" - Strange Parts

Attia Taylor & Corey Duncan, a.k.a. Strange Parts, have shared a new video for “Weathersby”. The track is featured on the duo's 2018 album, Oh God, What A Beautiful Time I Spent In The Wild, which was recently reissued via This & That Tapes. Shot in black & white with bright bursts of pinkish-purple fireworks, the video ties into the summer season. The pair naturally sway to the hypnotic groove. There’s a fantasy-inspiring, daydreaming aesthetic at play.





Claude “Turn”

Claude has released a beautiful new single called ”Turn”. This is the first new music from Dream Pop musician Claudia Ferme her debut EP, “Enactor" back in May of 2018.

The track was recorded and engineered by Michael MacDonald, who also plays Bass, and also features Sean Green on Drums.

photo by Kait O'Keefe

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