Wednesday, August 26, 2015

The Starting Line Announce Details for 2015 Holiday Show

>> While it pains me to think about the holidays in August, this is an announcement worth sacrificing warm summer thoughts for. The Starting Line just announced the details for their annual holiday show, and this year's event will feature The Movielife and Somos.  Taking place at Starland Ballroom on December 27th, this show is not to be missed for fans of any of these acts. 

>> Tickets are available now here and include the option for a limited 18x24 hand-screened 5-color event poster on French Paper Co. 100lb paper.

Get Connected:
The Starting Line: Website | Facebook | Twitter
The Movielife: Website | Facebook | Twitter

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Tuesday, August 25, 2015

New Years Day Announce New Support for The Other Side Tour

>> Goth-rockers New Years Day just announced details for their 2015 The Other Side Tour! The band will play across the US alongside Get Scared, Eyes Set To Kill, The Relapse Symphony, and Darksiderz. New Volume were originally on the tour as well, but had to drop off for undisclosed reasons. The tour coincides with the release of New Years Day's new album, Malevolence, on October 2nd. 

>> Tickets are available now - buy yours here!

Tour Dates:
Oct 03 – Soma Side Stage – San Diego, CA
Oct 04 – The Whisky A Go Go – Hollywood, CA
Oct 06 – Pub Rock – Scottsdale, AZ
Oct 07 – Launchpad – Albuquerque, NM
Oct 08 – Mesa Music Hall – El Paso, TX
Oct 09 – Tomcats – Fort Worth, TX
Oct 10 – Korova – San Antonio, TX
Oct 11 – Walters – Houston, TX
Oct 14 – The Blind Tiger – Greensboro, NC
Oct 15 – Canal Club – Richmond, VA
Oct 16 – Santos Party House – New York, NY
Oct 17 – Palladium Upstairs Rock & Shock – Worcester, MA
Oct 18 – Water Street Music Hall – Rochester, NY
Oct 20 – Agora Theatre – Cleveland, OH
Oct 21 – Bottom Lounge – Chicago, IL
Oct 22 – Frankies – Toledo, OH
Oct 23 – Hatchy’s – Utica, MI
Oct 24 – Fubar – St. Louis, MO
Oct 25 – 89th Street Collective – Oklahoma City, OK
Oct 26 – Aftershock – Kansas City, KS
Oct 28 – Marquis Theater – Denver, CO
Oct 29 – In The Venue – Salt Lake City, UT
Oct 30 – Volcanic Theatre Rock – Bend, OR
Oct 31 – Hawthorne Theatre – Portland, OR
Nov 01 – Studio 7 – Seattle, WA
Nov 03 – Boardwalk – Sacramento, CA
Nov 04 – Strium @ The Catalyst Club – Santa Cruz, CA
Nov 05 – Chain Reaction – Anaheim, CA

New Years Day - "Relentless" Lyric Video

Get Connected:
New Years Day: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram
Get Scared: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram
Eyes Set To Kill: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram
The Relapse Symphony: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram


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The Music Obsession featured on The Cadence Inc

>> Hello everyone - exciting news! I have been featured on The Cadence Inc's Media Profile feature. I discussed how TMO isn't Rolling Stone and how I'm totally fine with that, how you can't judge success based on what other people are doing, and more. I've posted a small bit of the content below, but you can see the full feature at .

The Cadence Inc: How do you see that the role of the music journalist has changed over the years? Now that the spread of ideas and opinions is so easily presented, how do you as an interviewer/publication stand out?

Kate Russell: It's definitely hard to stand out, especially if you're trying to avoid click-bait headlines. I took two courses at NYU about this very topic, and what I learned was that the music journalist plays a different role for people on an individual level. Some readers use the music journalist like they would use the suggestion of a friend - if the writer says this album is good, it's good and if the writer says this album is bad, it's on to the next one. That was sort of my intention when I started writing - to be the person who shined the light on the albums worth checking out. As a reader, I use music journalism to show me what to listen to first. If several writers are covering the same act, I'll look into what makes them so "buzz worthy." What's interesting is the fact that anyone can start writing about music now, no degree required. The flexibility in that way is what gave me the chance to do what I do (and to be interviewed like this!) so by default I can't complain, but it's definitely fascinating to watch how there are more and more ways for writers to make their opinions known and shared worldwide. To stand out, I do what I've always done - I try to cover things in a unique way, ask questions that people are afraid to ask or haven't thought to ask. I'm selective, and I think that helps my readers trust my site and its content. So while TMO might not be Rolling Stone, I know that those who do read the articles do so with an appreciation and that matters more to me anyway.

- Kate Russell

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Monday, August 24, 2015

An Interview with ThatOneEyedKid

>> Making the best out of any situation is an impressive talent, and it seems to be something musician Josh Friedman has mastered over the years. Having fought and survived cancer, Josh is pursuing a career doing what he loves under the name ThatOneEyedKid. He's gained a following through sharing excellent piano covers online and playing in bands along the way, and now ThatOneEyedKid is gearing up to release a new EP, titled Always, that's bound to be full of his signature soulful synth-pop goodness. Read more about his interesting video ideas, musical inspirations, and a possible talent for making root beer below.
>> Note: ThatOneEyedKid is currently represented by The Catalyst Publicity Group.

Please introduce yourself with one interesting thing you would like people to know about you.
My name is Josh Friedman, I’m a Boston based musician and singer-songwriter. The eye patches that I wear are hand-made by a man in Japan named Yuuichi Shibuya, he’s also made me ones with rhinestones for when I’m feeling frisky.

How long have you been making music? Have you always gone by ThatOneEyedKid?
I’ve been playing the piano since I was six and I’ve writing music since I was twelve. ThatOneEyedKid came from AIM, I’m pretty sure… I was 14 and really wanted a clever screen name. I think I tried “TheMatrix23” and something with a piano in it but “ThatOneEyedKid” was, thankfully, what I went with. I’ve always kept that as my name online so when I started playing shows it felt natural to use ThatOneEyedKid.

What inspired you to start doing cover videos? Did the online reaction influence your desire to create original music or were you always interested in writing your own songs?
I think probably like a lot of artists when I first started playing I was trying to find all the ways that I’d be allowed to play music in front of an audience. Part of me also likes making things immediately accessible to an audience, so picking a top 40 pop song to cover on YouTube felt like a great way to do that. In addition to the performer side of me, there’s the writer part of me that just wants to sit in a room by myself and make shit. From classical piano compositions to playing in indie-rock bands the goal on the original-music side is just to make something unique and high-quality, so not necessarily “pop-song-mashup” accessible. The online reaction to the covers has made me feel like “Awesome, I love that I do something that people can get into, I love connecting to people through music.” With my original music I’m definitely casting a smaller net than “Check out this Taylor Swift piano-cover!”, but I love having this outlet, a more personal way of connecting to people through my music.

Do you have a favorite song to cover? If so, which song and what does it mean to you personally?
It really changes… I think my favorite songs to cover are ones I put my own spin on and don’t end up sounding worse than the original haha. There’s one I do of “I’ll Follow You Into the Dark” where I change the chords and the feel (it’s like if Death Cab wrote an R&B ballad) that stands out to me. I love the lyrics, it’s so simple and the imagery is so clear but it’s also a totally unique, morbid way of telling someone you love them… I love that.

How was your experience transitioning from a viral YouTube cover artist to a musician with original work? Did a lot of your viewers immediately become fans of the new tunes as well?
That’s a great question. There’s not really any transition happening for me internally… covers and originals have been a part of my musical identity since I first started playing and writing. But publicly it’s definitely a shift. Until now there hasn’t been a whole of my original songs that I’ve felt excited about, but now I have these songs I’ve worked really hard on that I’m just super pumped about sharing with everyone.
I’m really grateful for my viewers. I’ve made non-cover content like vlogs and improvised songs that, at the very worst, they’ll just ignore it. But there’s no “Hey! What’s with this dumb original stuff? More coldplay covers plz!.” And at the best, they’ll take a chance on the originals they’re almost entirely really encouraging and supportive. Honestly most of what I’ve put out has been met with positivity, if my viewers start saying all my new content is garbage then I’ll re-evaluate haha. But that’s totally not the case so far… the audience I’ve found online have been super warm and open.

What was it like to transition from being one guy beautifully playing the piano in videos to having a live band?
Again not much of a transition for me, probably the same week I was putting piano covers up I was out playing with a band that weekend. I will say working on something collaboratively like playing in a band or an ensemble is so important for working independently. I like to work in solitary, too, but I attribute all the best things I do creatively to something I picked up from a collaboration. I’m really fortunate to perform and write with people who are just unbelievably more talented than me. It’s like running with Kenyans, it just makes me so much better.

In your Hang Around” video, viewers get to watch you strip while running down a long road. What was that filming experience like? Does the running and getting naked represent a specific feeling or message?
Haha oh Hang Around, good times. Filming was 90% adrenaline-fueled awesomeness and 10% “shit I might get arrested. in Baltimore. Shit.” Honestly the whole idea for the video came from me just talking with Greg Bowen (the director). We’re good friends from St. Louis and I told him I thought it’d be so funny if I did a music video where I was just running naked for no reason, and he said, “Yes. Let’s do it.” So there’s not really any other message we wanted to get across, other than “Hey look how funny it is Josh is naked, like really naked, singing along to this song.”

Your new single “Always” is quite fantastic. Since this is the title track for your upcoming EP, is there something extra special about this song for you? What went into writing and recording this one?
Ah awesome! So glad you like it!! I wanted it to be the title-track because I honestly feel like it’s the best of the five. I LOVE the 5, but Always definitely has something special going on. If I knew what it was I would tell you, but I honestly don’t know. I know it’s my dad’s favorite song and it’s the one that, when we play it live, everyone seems to get into the most.
I think the first thing I wrote in Always was that opening riff. At the time I was going through a breakup and my parents were separating so a song about enduring love just kinda came out haha. The story is definitely a testament to what was going on in my life back then. We recorded it with my band last May and tweaked it and tweaked it and then one day it was done! Still can’t believe it.

Can fans expect to hear similar themes on the rest of the EP?
Yes. 4/5 songs are about a lot of the themes in the song “Always.” It’s a lot of “What does it mean to love someone? What does it mean to love yourself?” That kind of emo shit. Haha just kidding, they’re not that melodramatic. But themes of love, loyalty, uncertainty, those show up a lot on this EP.

Was there anything particularly interesting that happened during your writing process for the EP? What are you hoping listeners will get from this release and what did you get out of putting it together?
Honestly I just hope listeners like it. I hope they get something from what I’ve experienced and put into these songs, that’s all. Putting it together just showed me how hard you have to work at anything to make something good. If you want to make a good song you have to work your ass off. Hopefully my ass-working-off made some cool songs .-)

You recently announced a string of shows coming up in September. What are you most looking forward to with these shows? Any surprises in store for attendees?
I’m just looking forward to playing these songs live again with my friends. I may or may not have made my own root-beer they we’ll be selling at the merch table. I don’t know if there’s anything more surprising than that haha.

Is there anything else you would like to say?
That’s all… thanks for writing such great questions and listening to the songs!

- Kate Russell

Get Connected:
ThatOneEyedKid on YouTube

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Friday, August 14, 2015

An Interview with Stellar Young

>> The first ever Pinelands Music Festival is taking place tomorrow, August 15th, in south New Jersey! I'm so stoked to be attending this new fest full of talented artists like The Early November, A Great Big Pile of Leaves, X Ambassadors, and more. I had the chance to interview one of those bands before tomorrow's festivities, and they couldn't be more excited. That band is Stellar Young - 5 talented indie rockers from Albany with a lot to offer the scene. The band should be right at home at Pinelands, and they have some big plans for that performance and afterwords. Read my interview with them below!

SourceYuliya Peshkova Photography

Please introduce yourselves!
- John Glenn (singer/keyboards) fun fact: I'm cross-dominate (I prefer to use different hands for different things)
- Kyle Hatch (guitar/backup vox) fun fact: I biked across the state of NY with John this summer.
- Erik Flora (guitar/harmonies) fun fact: I eat popcorn to force myself to floss more often
- Tim Brosnan (drums) fun fact: Once guessed the exact right number of jellybeans in a "how many jellybeans are in this jar?" contest. Won said jellybeans.
-Dave Parker (bass/synth) fun fact: You can wikipedia me

When and how did the band first get together? Did you all know the sound you were aiming for, or did that develop over time?
Once upon a time, John journeyed from Texas to New York in 8th grade where he met Erik Flora on his soccer team. They played music together throughout high school and into their college years where they met guitarist Kyle Hatch. One day they decided to play at an open mic in Albany, where they met Dave Parker who joined in on bass. Recently they met drummer Tim Brosnan. Our sound has and always will be a constant evolution.

You're listed as being from Albany. How would you describe your local music scene, and did that have any role in how the band developed?
The local scene in Albany is great. There's several independent radio stations that really support local music, and all of the bands in the area support each other. It's in a good central location with access to bigger markets. It's also a frequent stop for lots of national touring acts which has given us the opportunity to get on some bigger bills and make a name for ourselves.

You recently released your single "Amity" as a free download through Bandcamp. What was your motivation for going the "name your own price" route with that and your album Vessels?
We want our fans to hear our music. We've always felt that there is more value in music's ubiquity than its exclusivity, and we never want money to deter people from enjoying the songs that we work hard to create. We make music to share it with people and that has always been our first priority, if somebody feels that it's worth paying for that's an added bonus and confirmation that we're doing something right.

Can you tell us more about that album? 
We recorded at Applehead which is where we recorded our last album, Everything at Once. Dave has known the Applehead engineers for years, and we all work really well together. Every song on Vessels has a different inspiration with themes of dealing with loss, finding love or existential ponderings, but I often like to omit specific inspirations for songs because it's important for me that people make their own connections to the music and what it means to them.

How does it feel to be able to perform those songs live as much as you have?
It always feels different because the audience is never exactly the same, so there's always a different mix of energy which keeps songs fresh even if we've played them hundreds of times. It's always a good feeling when I look out and see people singing along.

What did you learn from previous performances that you'll be bringing to your upcoming performance at the Pinelands Music Festival? 
Performers and the audience feed off of each other, so always bring a ton of energy and play each show like it's the biggest show of your life and the audience will feel that as well.

How does it feel to be chosen for the inaugural line-up of a festival like Pinelands?
It's a very big deal for us to be included in Pinelands! After we saw the first 10 bands announced we immediately emailed Pinelands all of our info and to our shock we were added. Our first incarnation of the band began 11 years ago when we were in high school listening to bands like The Early November so to being put on a show with some of our biggest influences is a dream come true.

Who are you most excited to see and perform alongside?
The Early November, Vacationer, Good Old War, Northern Faces, Young Statues, CRUISR, Hellogoodbye, A Great Big Pile of Leaves, X Ambassadors, The Spill Canvas, and wow this list is getting too long, honestly really excited for everyone on this festival.

What are your goals for this experience?
Put on a great show, make a good impression, make new friends and meet fans.

Going forward, who would you love to perform with next? Have any other festivals caught your eye?
Speaking of long lists! haha. I'm almost afraid to say in fear of jinxing ourselves! There are a ton of great bands we'd love to play with and we've been fortunate to be able to play with a few of them. We have been lucky enough to be asked to play festivals in the capitol region fairly regularly with some nationally touring acts. A few festivals have caught our eye lately, I'd love to get on the Firefly festival in Delaware next year, as well as the Solid Sound music festival in western Mass!

What are your plans for after Pinelands? New music, new shows?
Yes! O+ festival is going to be great! It's held in Kingston NY Oct 9-11th. Our bassist Dave Parker lived in Kingston NY for a long time and is looking forward to returning to play there. A big part of the O+ festival is connecting musicians and artists with healthcare providers and raising awareness about the current state of healthcare. Luckily for us they allow our full band to health check ups of all kinds!! We plan on taking full advantage of this. As you know, us musicians are pretty known for not being able to easily afford health insurance and have a tendency to lead fairly unhealthy lives! haha!! After Pinelands be on the lookout for a live recording session we are playing in Woodstock NY at Applehead Studio. We will be recording a live album in front of a studio audience, tickets will be available. This will be held in early October and will be officially announced very soon. Check our website for updates on this and other upcoming events!

Is there anything else you would like to say? 
Check us out at the Main Stage at 2PM and keep up with us at!

Get Connected:


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Tuesday, August 11, 2015

The Wonder Years Announce Fall Tour w/ Motion City Soundtrack and more!

>> The summer is a time for reflection and planning. Warped Tour happens and if you aren't actually on the tour, the punk rock music scene is pretty quiet for a few months. Well, Warped Tour ended last week and fall tour announcements are afoot!

>> On Monday, The Wonder Years announced their fall tour and it's going to be one for the books. They are bringing one of the best from each generation of pop punk. Motion City Soundtrack will be representing the 2000s. State Champs started back in 2010 during the very beginning of the second wave, and You Blew It!, the newbies who will take over the genre in no time.

>> This month-long tour starts in New York City at Webster Hall on October 17 and ends in Sayreville, New Jersey at Starland Ballroom on November 27. If I were you, I wouldn't wait until the summer ends to get these tickets. VIP ticket information was announced along with the shows, and if you're fast enough you might be able to snag one here. If not, general tickets go on sale Thursday, August 13th at 10 AM local time.

Tour Dates:
Oct 17 @ Webster Hall—New York, NY
Oct 18 @ Webster Hall—New York, NY
Oct 20 @ The Palladium—Worcester, MA
Oct 21 @ The Danforth Music Hall—Toronto, Canada
Oct 22 @ Agora Theatre—Cleveland, OH
Oct 23 @ The Fillmore—Detroit, MI
Oct 24 @ Riviera Theatre—Chicago, IL
Oct 25 @ First Avenue—Minneapolis, MN
Oct 27 @ Ogden Theatre—Denver, CO
Oct 28 @ Murray Theater—Murray, UT
Oct 30 @ Knitting Factory Concert House—Spokane, WA
Oct 31 @ Showbox at the Market —Seattle, WA
Nov 02 @ The Regency Ballroom—San Francisco, CA
Nov 03 @ The Wiltern—Los Angeles, CA
Nov 05 @ House of Blues—Las Vegas, NV
Nov 06 @ The Observatory—Santa Ana, CA
Nov 07 @ Soma —San Diego, CA
Nov 08 @ The Marquee—Tempe, AZ
Nov 10 @ Alamo City Music Hall—San Antonio, TX
Nov 11 @ House of Blues—Houston, TX
Nov 12 @ House of Blues—Dallas, TX
Nov 13 @ The Blue Note—Columbia, MO
Nov 14 @ The Pageant—St Louis, MO
Nov 16 @ Cannery Ballroom—Nashville, TN
Nov 18 @ The Ritz Ybor—Tampa, FL
Nov 19 @ Revolution—Fort Lauderdale, FL
Nov 20 @ House of Blues—Lake Buena Vista, FL
Nov 21 @ The Masquerade—Atlanta, GA
Nov 23 @ Amos' SouthEnd—Charlotte, NC
Nov 24 @ Rams Head Live!—Baltimore, MD
Nov 25 @ Electric Factory—Philadelphia, PA
Nov 27 @ Starland Ballroom—Sayreville, NJ

Get Connected:
The Wonder Years: Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | Website
Motion City Soundtrack: Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | Website
State Champs: Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | Website
You Blew It!: Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | Website

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Monday, August 10, 2015

LIVE REVIEW: Max and the Moon w/ Armors and Satchmode

>> Living in LA, it is hard to find a venue where both the audience and the musicians can hear what is going on onstage. When going to see a small band who you heard was good, sound quality is crucial. This makes Mrs. Fish the best LA venue.

>> Satchmode are the first band of the night. When playing to a crowd sipping drinks at a bar, you have to have the stage presence to engage them. Satchmode doesn't. All of the band members seem to be very much off in their own worlds making it feel like the audience is standing behind glass watching the band work in the studio. That said, they have the dream-pop musical vibe down.

>> As Armors begin, the focus of the room moves to the stage. Lead singer (not to mention, drummer) Olen Kittelsen captivates the audience as he engages with us without even looking down at his kit. Sometimes drummers sing backing vocals, clean vocals, or a couple verses in a few songs, but it’s very rare for the drummer to be both lead singer and frontman (incase I haven’t been clear yet, I’m blown away).

>> They begin the set with one of their two released songs, “Parasite.” By having “Parasite” be their first song of the night, Kittelsen shows his vocal stylistic versatility right off the bat. In this one song alone he sings in the style of Train’s lead singer, Patrick Monahan, as well as uses his falsetto during the verses and ends the song with an almost pop-punk style vocal. This makes it easy for Armors to successfully create songs in virtually every rock genre. 

>> Max and The Moon keep with the pop rock theme, starting their set with “Modern Love.” Keyboardist Matt Couchois and guitarist John Velasquez switch off singing lead vocals, falsetto and harmony. Their voices have drastically different timbres giving the illusion of four lead singers rather than two.

>> They play “Mexico” next. It’s very easy at this point to see who’s there for them. “Mexico” has been out for over a year and other than “Crazy,” it’s probably their best known song.

>> Mrs. Fish prides themselves on being a rock n’ roll lounge, so the energy in the room and on stage is always very relaxed. This makes it possible for band members to walk off stage and sing directly to their friends (or in Velasquez’s case, while sitting on their armrest) as friends feed them or give them sips of their drink. Even if you aren’t best friends with MATM, the setting makes it easy to forget that, which, as a fan, is a pretty cool feeling.

>> For both “Out Of My Head” and “The Walk,” Couchois  goes between playing the keys and a snare, a performance tactic most recently associated with Nick Petriccia of WALK THE MOON. However, with a style nothing like 80s rock, that’s where the comparison stops.
In an audience vote, the second to last song they play is their most recent hit, “Harps,” and they end the night with “Crazy” the first track off of their second EP.

>> It’s hard to make an impression in just 30 minutes, but Armors and Max and the Moon do it with ease. Can’t wait to see what they can pull off with longer sets.

By: Ariella Laichas-Malamud

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Thursday, August 6, 2015

PREVIEW: Female Fronted Band Showcase TONIGHT at Mrs. Fish in LA!

>> The Music Obsession is proud to sponsor tonight's event at Mrs. Fish in Los Angeles! The show, put together by our own Ariella Laichas-Malamud, is totally free and features three talented female-fronted bands: The Controversy, The Vim Dicta, and MleoRSVP for the event here and find out more about the bands below!

Thurs 8/6/15 - 21+  |  Free
Doors @ 5pm for happy hour  |  Bands start @ 9pm
featuring The Controversy, The Vim Dicta, & Mleo
Mrs. Fish in Los Angeles
448 S. Hill St, DTLA 90013

About The Bands:

>> The Controversy is a three-piece band from Los Angeles who specialize in electronic art pop. They released their album, Don't Count On Me, earlier this year. Download that here!

>> Somewhat similarly, The Vim Dicta is a three-piece PsychoGroove band also from LA.  This show kicks off a string of performances across California, including stops in Santa Monica and San Diego.

>> Mleo is a four-piece alternative rock band from various parts of California. The group is currently performing shows in between working on their next single. Maybe if you're lucky, they'll play it at the show!

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