Led Zeppelin is in my top three favorite bands of all time, and if I could choose to see any band ever throughout history to perform live again, it would most definitely be Led Zeppelin. Led Zeppelin, which was composed of vocalist Robert Plant, guitarist Jimmy Page, drummer John Bonham, and bassist John Paul Jones, were a groundbreaking rock band from the UK who came to the United States to be discovered. Their sound was accepted widely throughout the U.S. and they wound up signing a record deal. Led Zeppelin is revered as one of the ultimate classic rock bands who not only sang rock and roll but lived it as well. They fully embodied the rock and roll culture and left their mark on the rock and roll world. Their first album Led Zeppelin was released in 1969, (which features the popular song “Dazed and Confused”) became a huge success and would then obviously spark more albums to come. Next, was Led Zeppelin II, featuring songs like “Whole Lotta Love”, “The Lemon Song”, and “Ramble On”. This also gained popularity and was very successful. Next released was Led Zeppelin III and then Led Zeppelin IV. Led Zeppelin IV is by far one of my favorite albums of all time. It is definitely in my top five favorites. This album alone was revolutionary due to the song “Stairway to Heaven” which to this day is still the most demanded and number 1 requested rock song on charts. This shows that Led Zeppelin’s impact and influence remains and is widely used in the music industry today. This entire album, in my opinion, is a journey, especially if you listen to the album on vinyl. From “Black Dog” to “Going to California” and all the songs in between and after, this album is Led Zeppelin at its finest. Following this album was Houses of the Holy, and a few albums followed in between. But in 1979, Led Zeppelin released In Through the Outdoor. This album is very different then the usual Zeppelin material. The sound is different along with the vocals, but overall, it is still a great album. This album features songs like “Fool in the Rain” and “In the Evening”. Led Zeppelin became more than just a band because they disbanded letting the world know that they WERE rock and roll. They put on a great show that could last hours, and as I have heard, these shows were well worth the wait and you would never be bored during a show. Robert Plant was a true showman and his vocals were very distinct which also gave Led Zeppelin a certain character. I truly do wish that I could time travel and go back to one of Led Zeppelin’s shows. They rightfully earned a spot in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and according to Rolling Stone, John Bonham is the number 1 drummer of all time and also according to Rolling Stone, Jimmy Page is the third best guitarist of all time. In case you are wondering, Jimi Hendrix is number 1 guitarist of all time, and rightfully so. Led Zeppelin disbanded in 1980 after the death of their drummer John Bonham but the legacy never died. There will never be another Led Zeppelin but as they say, heroes get remembered, but legends never die and Led Zeppelin is here to stay and most definitely still alive.
Tonight, I’m throwing it back it to mid 70’s. No, I was not alive during this time but I could only imagine what the music scene was like. The world itself was going through many issues such as the Vietnam War, the Cold War, communism, and more. Society was changing and so was the music scene. Amidst all the chaos and destruction, a new music genre and cultural movement formed; this was the creation of punk. As a history minor, I find it interesting to see how music changes and has an influence on society; it reflects what is going on in the world during specific times. When I think of punk, which started gaining popularity around 1976, I think of rebellion. This rebellion is reflected in the bands that formed through their lyrics, sound, and image. One of the most popular and influential bands of punk was the Ramones. The Ramones, Joey, Johnny, DeeDee, and Tommy created music inside a garage in Queens, NY. There sound was chaotic and so were their blunt, tongue-in-cheek lyrics; this chaos perfectly reflected the issues during this time in history. They released many albums such as Rocket to Russia which features many famous songs like “Sheena is a Punk Rocker”, “Teenage Lobotomy”, and “We’re a Happy Family”. The Ramones concerts, let alone any punk concert, would be crazy and out of control, but it represented the new generation of youth culture for a part of the population of the world. The Ramones performed at CBGB’s in New York City which was a major hotspot for the punk scene. Fun fact: CBGB’s which stands for “Country, Blue Grass, and Blues” originally wanted to draw in a country crowd where these genres would be played, however, it turned into a punk hotspot. The Ramones sparked a vibe that would inspire many other bands and reached across the pond to the UK where British Punk was ruled by bands like the Sex Pistols and The Clash. The punk period is a fascinating time in history and if you appreciate both history and music history, it can be seen how music reflects the times. The Ramones are one of my all-time favorites and have rightfully earned a spot in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The impact the Ramones had on punk was tremendous and they are still a highly respected and influential band and are an inspiration for many bands and artists today. If you are looking for more punk, check out my suggested playlist tab!
Pop-Punk is one of my favorite genres of music. I love the edgy lyrics and edgy vibe; that “teen angst” kind of feel that this genre is associated with. There are many great pop-punk bands out there that capture this vibe, however, one of my favorite bands is Neck Deep. Neck Deep is a Welsh pop-punk group that has gained attention throughout the underground music scene. They have been featured in Alternative Press, Kerrang!, Rock Sound, and other magazines and have played at Vans Warped Tour. Neck Deep is a five piece band with a drummer, two guitarists, and a bass player. What really makes this band come together is the rough but melodic vocals of their frontman, Ben Barlow. Barlow gives Neck Deep a distinct character and separates them from other pop-punk bands. Neck Deep’s latest album Life’s Not Out to Get You, released in 2015, encases everything that pop-punk is about. Edgy lyrics, rough vocals, and heavy chords, are displayed throughout the album. Some personal favorites from this album are “Kali Ma”, “December”, and “Smooth Seas Don’t Make Good Sailors”. When it come to the personality of the band, you can see that they are all about the punk vibe. This is exhibited throughout their music videos and how they play during a live performance. In many of their music videos, they feature film from their actual performances. Personally, I like that they show footage from performing; it displays Neck Deep’s talent and love for what they do as a band. Not only can you see that they love performing, but they are a band who care about their fans and appreciate the fan’s support. It is always refreshing to know that fans are greatly appreciated by the bands. Lastly, the image of Neck Deep shows they are true pop-punk band. I recommend checking out some of Neck Deep’s music videos. The band recently released a part one and part two music video for “December”. “Kali Ma” is another great video to look at because it shows a fun side to the guys and is simply a fun video to watch. Neck Deep is one of my favorites and if you want to look more into Neck Deep, then go to Alternative Press’s website because they have great, in-depth pieces on Neck Deep. If you want more pop-punk, check out my suggested playlists tab!
For any vinyl junkies out there, this post is for you. As a music lover, I am a vinyl junkie and I feel that vinyl is the best way to listen to music. I collect classic rock albums and am slowly growing my collection. Showcased here is the Eagles Hotel California. Obviously, in the world we live in today, it is very easy to simply put on a pair of headphones or earbuds and stream music through a phone, computer, etc, but there is nothing like listening to a record in its truest form on a record player. I use an Audio-Technica turntable which has the ability to speed up or slow down a record. If you are looking to buy a turntable, this is not exactly the cheapest turntable but you will absolutely get your money’s worth out of it. It costs $399 but if you are a true vinyl and music enthusiast, it is well worth the cost. However, this is not my first record player. I first purchased a Crosley record player which was only around $100 and I have to admit, it only lasted about a week. It started warping and falling apart in less than a week and a half. I was not happy with that purchase and decided to look into a better turntable which led me to the Audio-Technica one. I do not know if anyone else has had issues with Crosley, but because of that one purchase, I was disappointed. I am very happy with my current record player and look forward to expanding my vinyl collection. If you are looking for a record player, my best advice would be to go with Audio-Technica and you do not have to go with anything super expensive either. Amazon is a great place to go if you are looking for something as well. As for buying vinyl, Barnes and Noble has a great selection and Amazon has a great online selection as well.
Hello friends! Its been a while since my last post, but between buying a new computer and a busy summer, I am back. I am going to switch it up today and focus on a music genre I have not talked much about. And what genre is that? Metal. Many people are turned off by the metal genre, thinking it is scary or too loud. Indeed, it can be frightening to many music listeners; I myself was in that boat of not being into the metal scene, but after growing up a little and truly wanting to be emerged in the rock music scene I delved into the genre. I found what kind of sounds I like, and realized I like the harder vocals and chords. I especially like the sub-genres of metal core, post hardcore, and nu metal. I found bands whose lyrics had power, purpose, and emotion and one of those bands that I found possesses all of these qualities . This band is Arizona based band The Word Alive. The five piece band with frontman Telle Smith encompasses all of metal core and post hardcore qualities. I personally like a melody and harmony and not straight screaming. Smith mixes it up by not just screaming but also singing. It shows he is versatile and has different dimensions to his voice. Smith is accompanied by drummer Luke Holland, who is an extraordinary drummer and guitarists Zack Hansen, Tony Pizzuti, and bassist Daniel Shapiro. Not only does this band perfectly capture the instrumental aspect of metal core, but their lyrics are something to be commended as well. TWA’s lyrics are empowering and they want to let you know that if you are feeling down, having a rough day, or just need to to vent it out, they want you to know that you are not alone. They tell you through their lyrics that they are with you and can help you out. TWA’s lyrics are self-empowering and relatable. The lyrics plus the heavy instrumental equals the perfect post hardcore band that people should totally listen to. TWA is one of my favorite bands and if you follow the guys on social media, you can see that they are down to earth and fun. Their latest album Dark Matter which was released back in March is a great album and fully captures the message of what TWA is all about. If TWA sounds like a band you may like, you should check out their other albums and songs. A personal favorite of mine is “Life Cycles” from the Life Cycles album, released in 2012. If you are not sure if you would be into The Word Alive, then listen to this song and maybe your perception will change. In my suggested playlists tab, I will post a metal core playlist of some of my favorites. I’d love to know some of your favorites too! So leave a comment if you want, or not. It’s totally up to you.
When I think of alternative music, many different musicians and sub-genres come to mind when considering the creation of the alternative genre. Some sub-genres are new-wave and punk, which along with many other sounds created alternative music. Alternative music became very popular in the 90’s with artists such as Radiohead and Greenday; but grunge was something new as well and it was very much a sub-genre of rock and alternative. In my opinion, Nirvana is by far the most iconic band that came out of the grunge years. The three piece band of Krist Novoselic, Dave Grohl, and frontman Kurt Cobain, shook the music world and took it by storm. Nirvana was created in a garage in Seattle, Washington where they played and created music. Seattle was a hotspot for grunge and bands such as Pearl Jam, Alice in Chains, and Soundgarden all came from the Seattle grunge scene as well. Nirvana was edgy, dark, and empowering and Cobain’s use of distorted guitar gave Nirvana an iconic sound and characterized the sound of grunge. Nirvana released their debut album Bleach in 1989 which features the popular song “About a Girl”. In 1991, Nirvana released Nevermind which features many of their most popular songs like “Drain You”, “Come As You Are”, and the chart topping song “Smells Like Teen Spirit”, which to this day remains one of the most requested and popular grunge/alt/rock songs. The reason why Nirvana is one of my favorite bands is because of their raw sound, distorted guitar, and their raw lyrics. Unfortunately, frontman Kurt Cobain took his life in 1994 and this physically ended Nirvana. I say physically because Nirvana is still very relevant today and are a very respected band in the music world. Drummer Dave Grohl went on to form the band the Foo Fighters (another great band), due to the event of Cobain’s death. Nirvana was a short lived band but what they created in those few short years changed the music scene and rock and alternative worlds forever. When listening to different band interviews, Nirvana has come up many times as an inspiration to these bands which goes to show that Nirvana still lives on. The mark that Nirvana has left on the music world will never be erased. I highly suggest listening to Nirvana and listen to the lyrics to find messages. In my suggested playlists tab, I have created a Grunge playlist for people to find new songs or just to look at some of my recommendations.
The genre of metal is growing into a stronger and more popular genre; this means more bands and groups are forming. One band that surely captures the post-hardcore and metal genre is Eyes on Satellites. Eyes on Satellites is a post-hardcore band from Boston, Mass, and have released their EP, Explorations and a single, Swan Song. The band consists of five members; Dave Longval (vocals), Will Lopez (vocals, guitar), Andrew Webster (guitar), Mark Thompson (drums) and Danny Looney (bass). As Eyes on Satellites says on their website, they want listeners to feel “equal” and “have a voice”. The lyrics in these songs capture that mission and, if you read the lyrics, the words describe feelings that everyone can relate to. I do not know about you, but as a music enthusiast and avid listener, lyrics are a very important aspect to a song for me. I look for depth and meaning in lyrics, and there is clearly meaning in Eyes on Satellites lyrics. All of their songs have depth to them, especially “Dollhouse” and “Swan Song” Eyes on Satellites have also released a music video for their song, “Dollhouse”, which literally depicts dolls. This is a very creative concept and is also delivered well. On Eyes on Satellites YouTube page, there is an acoustic version of the song “Dollhouse” which shows that there is both a hardcore and soft side to Eyes on Satellites. If you are into metal and post-hardcore, I highly suggest you check out Eyes on Satellites. I would compare the sound of Eyes on Satellites to the post-hardcore bands of August Burns Red and We Came As Romans. Eyes on Satellites is a band to look out for and they have a bright future ahead for them.Below are the links for their website and YouTube channel and also check them out on Instagram and Twitter. You can also find their music on iTunes and Spotify.
Are you into pop-punk music and looking for a new band to listen to? Well, the Montell Jordans are definitely a band you should look up and start listening to. TMJ is a band from San Diego, CA. The band consists of four members: Tim Kilcourse, who is lead vocals and guitar, Ryan Baghai who plays the lead guitar, Brian Budnar who plays bass and Matt Price who plays the drums. TMJ is a talented rising rock band that features definite sounds of pop-punk and hardcore rock beats. TMJ’s debut album Sweater Puppies clearly reflects and captures these rock and punk roots especially in songs like “I’m Not Your Father, But You Can Call Me Daddy” and “Pain Don’t Hurt (Terrified)”. Along with their debut album, TMJ released a music video for “I’m Not Your Father, But You Can Call Me Daddy” which characterizes the punk and rock roots that TMJ are striving for. TMJ is the kind of band you would see at Vans Warped Tour and one day, you may just see them playing one of the stages. Some bands that I would say are similar to TMJ are Knuckle Puck and 2000’s era Fall Out Boy. The Montell Jordans are surely a band that you should keep an eye on if you are into the pop-punk or punk-rock music scene. These four men are very talented and they will surely grow as their musical career progresses. I know that I’ll be watching their progress and am excited to see where TMJ will go. Everyone should go and check out their music video and listen to Sweater Puppies which can be found on Spotify, The Montell Jordans website and on YouTube. Also go check them out on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram and go give them a like and a follow! Here is the link to their new music video and the link to TMJ website.
“I’ll see you on the dark side of the moon”…These lyrics come from one of my favorite classic rock bands of all time-Pink Floyd. Although I was born in the 90’s and was not around for the height of classic rock bands, I have learned about the history of rock music and have listened to more bands than I can name. That being said, I rank Pink Floyd as one of my all time favorites. Pink Floyd, which was composed of David Gilmour, Roger Waters, Richard Wright, and Nick Mason, were an instrumental part of the creation of the psychedelic rock music era. Pink Floyd was not looking for commercial fame, rather they were simply experimenting with sound. They did not expect their music to go far and gain radio success, however, they did. Pink Floyd was a concept band, meaning their albums had a theme. My personal favorite is Dark Side of the Moon, which was released in 1973. This album is by far one of my favorite albums of all time. The concept of this album is madness and this theme can be heard throughout the entire album, especially in songs like “Brain Damage” and “Eclipse”. This album tells a story (in a way) because each song leads into another. The psychedelic music era was spawned by various different artists such as The Grateful Dead, The Doors, and the Byrds, which all rank as some of my favorite classic rock bands. Psychedelic rock is one of my favorite sub-genres that branched off of rock and it is still relevant today. Today there are neo-psychedelic bands such as Tame Impala and Temples which have carried on those psychedelic roots and have created a modern twist. I feel that Pink Floyd captures the essence of psychedelic rock. They are also inspiring because they were not looking for fame and success. Instead, they were experimenting with sound for the sake of music, and that is what music should be about-enjoyment and creation over fame and fortune. Dark Side of the Moon and The Wall (’79)are my favorite albums by Pink Floyd and I have both of these albums on vinyl. There is nothing like listening to “Comfortably Numb” from The Wall or “Money” from Dark Side on vinyl. For people who may not know much on Pink Floyd, I suggest sampling some songs on Dark Side.
When Blurryface was released (which has been about a year ago now) I could not stop listening to it. The sound is different and lyrics are unique. Considering I listen to a fair amount of alternative music and listen to many songs with a different kind of sound, Twentyone Pilots is something different altogether. The sound is something I still cannot completely describe, and I think that their sound can be interpreted. Twentyone Pilots has taken the music world by storm, especially in the alternative music world. The group consists of only two members, Tyler Joseph and Josh Dun, which is astonishing for the quality and depth of the music they put out. Personally, I like music that has depth to its lyrics and a great beat to rock out to; Twentyone Pilots meticulously covers both of these aspects. There is aesthetic appeal to both their music and their image. There is extreme talent between both of these men; for example, Tyler Joseph raps, sings, and plays many different instruments. Josh Dun is also a great instrumentalist and these traits can be heard in the entirety of Blurryface. There are sounds from the ukulele to melodic piano while on top of rapping and other fascinating sounds that are different from typical alternative sounds. A popular song of their’s that has been on the radio recently is “Stressed Out”, but if you are not familiar with Twentyone Pilots or any of their songs, then I highly suggest you listen to them. My personal favorites are “Polarize”, “Message Man”, and “Not Today”, due to their musical versatility and lyrics, however any song off of Blurryface is great. Tyler Joseph and Josh Dun, I am looking forward to what you will come up with next and I am eagerly waiting for new material!