PRODUCT OF HATE has been honing their metallic assault for a decade now, but it wasn't until 2016 that their debut album got a Global release via Napalm Records. That album, BURIED IN VIOLENCE, came with a built-in perennial favorite for the Halloween season in "Unholy Manipulator," and I should know - I directed the video for it. While that one was first released independently a few years prior to the album, no one really knew that one of the new cuts would also bear a horrific mark, and that's what lands "Monster" in my 31 Days of Halloween countdown for the very first time. Oddly enough, the song and video may be more timely in 2017 than it was in 2016, especially in light of the situation with Harvey Weinstein and the ongoing discussion about the proper treatment of women and the horrors of abuse. Whether you've heard the song and seen the video before, or you're just discovering it now, watch and listen closely. This "Monster" might be bigger than you thought...
She was born in Detroit on an automobile assembly line. But she is no ordinary automobile. Deep within her chassis lives an unholy presence. She is Christine, a red and white 1958 Plymouth Fury whose unique standard equipment includes an evil, indestructible vengeance that will destroy anyone in her way.
Thus goes the introduction to CHRISTINE, the 1983 John Carpenter film based upon Stephen King's novel of the same name. Now, 34 years later, Varèse Sarabande has reissued John Carpenter’s classic score for CHRISTINE on LP. The CHRISTINE– Original Motion Picture Score has been fully remastered and is been released on blue vinyl, with a splatter variant available via Newbury Comics. The album features fantastic new art from award-winning movie poster artist Gary Pullin (“Ghoulish Gary”).
On August 24, 2017, Taylor Swift unleashed "Look What You Made Me Do," the divisive first single from her forthcoming album, Reputation (out November 10 via Big Machine Records). Three days later, the music video arrived, and somewhat surprisingly, the cover versions did, too. In the age of YouTube & Spotify, there's a cottage industry for artists that have made names for themselves based on well-produced cover versions - not sound-alike knockoffs, but unique takes on popular music that have gained steam in recent years. What's incredible is the quick turnaround on these - not just learning someone else's song in a matter of days, but also deconstructing it, rebuilding it, recording it, getting the mixing/mastering done, and in some cases shooting a video for it all in under a week. For Swift's single, one of the most impressive versions arrived just a week later (August 31) via Scott Bradlee's Post Modern Jukebox, followed by the September 12 release of Our Last Night's rocked-up version. In just under two months, there have been dozens of covers that have arrived, and another great one hit this weekend via Frog Leap Studios and Leo Moracchioli. Check out five versions below of what may be 2017's most-covered new song, "Look What You Made Me Do."
On October 20, 2017, Sacred Bones Records will release John Carpenter ANTHOLOGY (Movie Themes 1974-1998), a newly-recorded collection of the filmmaker/composer's iconic and minimalist soundtracks. As part of the ramp-up, Nine Inch Nails' Trent Reznor and frequent collaborator Atticus Ross have issued their take on the unforgettable theme to John Carpenter's HALLOWEEN. Stream the nearly eight-minute track below as part of THE ROCK FATHER's 31 Days of Halloween...
I don't know if there's ever been a definitive study to determine why rockabilly surf punk fits so well with monsters and ghouls, but it most certainly does. Perhaps the most famous example is Jack Marshall's "Munsters Theme," but here we are fifty years later and the jams just keep on coming - and the vibe has gone far beyond the beach, with guitarslingers around the globe breaking out those twangy riffs atop bouncing beats and low-end grooves. On Friday the 13th of October, 2017, Russian rockers MESSER CHUPS will release their latest album, Taste the Blood of Guitaracula - a mostly-instrumental collection of 16 songs perfect for the Halloween season. Ahead of its release, here's a look at the official video for "Midnight Call," along with "Chupacabra vs. Batman." Crank it up!
Earlier this year, SKINLAB hit the road with my boys in PRODUCT OF HATE for an East Coast Tour as they celebrated their past while working on new music to shape the future of the band. Now comes the "End of Silence," the first new SKINLAB single release in nearly a decade - and it's a good one. The accompanying lyric video can be seen below.
Now this was a welcome surprise to wake up to this morning...
Donita Sparks and Suzi Garder's first songwriting collaboration in 18 years has arrived in the form of a return single from L7, the very timely "Dispatch From Mar-a-Lago." Available for streaming or sale this morning from Don Giovanni Records, the new single takes its name from Donald Trump's "Winter White House" and provides one hell of a fun jam to kick off the weekend. Listen below!
Following the news that Frank Zappa will be going back on tour, thanks to the magic of holograms, the Zappa Family Trust and Universal have announced The Halloween 77 Box Set - a 40th Anniversary celebration of Zappa's massive residency at The Palladium in New York City. Zappa and his band played six shows from October 28-31, 1977, with all of them recorded and four filmed for BABY SNAKES. Now, all six concerts are being released on CD and Digital, packaged together with one of 2017's coolest Halloween costumes: A vintage-style Frank Zappa done in the tradition of the classic Ben Cooper costumes that kids like myself used to wear.
I despise Snapchat on many levels, particularly in that it managed to convince millions of people that vertical video is acceptable. This is 100% false, and if video is presented in any format other than landscape (widescreen) or square (like an old tv), that is incorrect. Most folks wouldn't hang their television vertically because tall-and-skinny video is painful to watch. But, in an effort to capture the tainted eyes of those millions, Facebook and Instagram also went vertical via "stories," solidifying their Snapchat clones with filters as well. Why am I ranting about this again, you ask? Because THE DARKNESS has released a new music video for "Southbound Trains," and unfortunately it's done in a snapchat style... which means they've either got black bars on the sides, or have to place multiple vertical images next to each other to fill-out the properly-configured widescreen player. I love THE DARKNESS, but this is just annoying.
Tribute tours have become big business in recent years, with artists ranging from Michael Jackson to Ronnie James Dio being celebrated in new productions. Celebrating David Bowie is one of the newer ones, and after a series of shows this year, they've announced a Celebrating David Bowie Tour for 2018, with dates announced for Europe and North America. "What might a David Bowie 2018 tour setlist consist of?" That's one of the questions about to be answered as Celebrating David Bowie keeps David's music alive with musicians who worked closely with him throughout his career and other top musicians greatly influenced by him.
On September 22, RCA will release the Original Motion Picture Soundtrack for MY LITTLE PONY: THE MOVIE, and today we've got the official music video for Sia's new track, "Rainbow." Sung by Sia’s character, Songbird Serenade, in the upcoming film (in theaters October 6), the official video for the song was directed by Daniel Askill, featuring Maddie Ziegler, with choreography by Ryan Heffington. Check it out below...
I've mentioned it before - the first big concert I ever attended was The Oak Ridge Boys at the Star Plaza Theatre in Merriville, Indiana way back when it was still the Holiday Star Theatre. That said, I've continued enjoying their music for the past 40 years, and now comes news that the Country Music Hall of Fame members and five-time GRAMMY winners have recorded a new album with producer Dave Cobb (Shooter Jennings, Zac Brown Band), set for release in the first quarter of 2018. The as-yet-untitled album is the second that the group has worked on with Cobb, who also produced The Boys Are Back in 2009.