It’s Been Too Long (Encore Episode 134)

Encore 134

It’s been a few weeks since Thomas and I have sat down and talked, so we really enjoyed catching up on this episode of Encore. There’s some talk about new Apple products, AirPods, Apple Watches, and then a lengthy talk about seeing Blink-182 live and all the bands that opened for them on their recent tour. We end with a bunch of really fun listener questions about albums, music, life, an and had a blast trying to decide what band we’d want to see if we could travel anywhere in the world. This is a fun one.

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Chorus TV: Piebald

Piebald

For the first time since Bamboozle in 2010, Piebald graced us with their presence for a string of eleven shows on the east and west coasts. Their eighth show landed them in Los Angeles, California at the Echoplex. After Facial and Limbeck opened, the crowd packed up against the stage anticipating the nostalgia of the set to come. As soon as Piebald opened up with “Karate Chops For Everyone But Us,” the singalong began. The set reached an emotional peak as the delicate strums of “King of the Road” were drowned out by the audience’s heartfelt singing. Travis handed his guitar off to Facial’s guitarist Cam for the fan favorite “American Hearts” as Travis wrapped up enough slack of his microphone cable for him to jump into the crowd to kick off the song. Frantic strobe lights, fist-pumping, and crowd surfing ensued.

We captured some video of the performance and you can find that below.

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The Killers’ ‘Sam’s Town’ and The Hold Steady’s ‘Boys and Girls in America,’ 10 Years Later

Between 2002 and 2009, Bruce Springsteen released five studio albums. Rather remarkably, that statistic made the aughts Springsteen’s most prolific decade ever. The Boss fired off four straight classics in the 1970s (Greetings from Asbury Park, The Wild, The Innocent, The E Street Shuffle, Born to Run, and Darkness on the Edge of Town) and put out four more in the 1980s (The River, Nebraska, Born in the U.S.A. and Tunnel of Love) before faltering in both quality and output in the 1990s. (The last decade of the millennium only saw Human Touch, Lucky Town, and The Ghost of Tom Joad, all of which are among Springsteen’s weakest LPs.)

The 2000s, though, brought the man back to life. Suddenly, Springsteen albums (and good ones) were a regular occurrence again. During the seven years that elapsed between 2002 and 2009, we got three E Street Band records (The Rising, Magic, and Working on a Dream), one acoustic album (Devils & Dust), and one tribute record (The Seeger Sessions). Four of those five records are worthwhile (Working on a Dream is the dud), and two are genuine classics (The Rising and Magic both recapture the…well, “magic” of the E Street Band’s golden age). However, there’s still an argument to be made that the three best Springsteen albums of the 2000s weren’t even written by Bruce, but by guys named Brandon, Craig, and Brian.

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Always Summer: A Farewell to Yellowcard

Yellowcard

The first time I heard Yellowcard was sometime in the summer of 2004. I think my sister and I were packing for our annual trip to visit my grandparents in New Hampshire and I had the radio on. (This event is notable because I can legitimately not remember the last time I had the radio on of my own accord.) I had my radio tuned to the local “modern rock” station, which played about 50% Staind and 50% everything else. They also had this feature called “the Buzzcut,” where they’d play an up-and-coming song from an up-and-coming band and ask listeners to call in with feedback. If listeners liked the song, it got added to the playlist. If they didn’t, it never got played again.

The Buzzcut song on this particular morning was “Ocean Avenue,” Yellowcard’s breakout hit single. At this point in time, the song was almost a year old, because it inexplicably wasn’t the lead single from the album of the same name. (More inexplicably, Capitol Records officially released “Ocean Avenue” as a single in February, the least appropriate month of entire year to be listening to “Ocean Avenue.”)

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Goodbye, Yellowcard (Encore Episode 133)

Encore 133

On this week’s episode of Encore I bring in special guest Craig Manning to discuss the final Yellowcard album and say goodbye to the band. Yellowcard have been a part of the formative years of our lives, and on September 30th they will release their last album. We discuss what the band’s meant to us, our favorites in their catalog, and then go track-by-track through the new album to talk about we like, don’t like, and how it stacks up with the rest of their discography. I think it’s safe to say that we’re going to miss this band quite a bit.

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