14 in 2014 (all in time for holiday shopping)

14 in 2014 (all in time for holiday shopping)

I always look forward to annual “best of” music list that begin popping up every year when the cold weather arrives.  It is fascinating who thinks what is the hottest fucking music out there each year.  Two thousand fourteen is no different.

And since I am kneeling in the musical confessional booth, I must fess up I am constantly stuck somewhere between 1982-1999 when it comes to my musical listening, but somehow, in some miraculous way I do manage to stumble across “new bands” worth listening to, though few and far between.

Some 2014 results make sense (the new Hold Steady and Tom Petty) while others don’t (am I the only one who doesn’t understand the big deal behind The War Against Drugs or Sun Kil Moon?).  And some are just plain fucking bullshit (the new U2 #1 Rolling Stone?  How much is the band paying you to make such a claim??).  And don’t even get me started on the Foo Fighter’s, Sonic Highways…except that is basically a bunch of medicore, over-produced shit….see what you made me did now??

Anyways, fuck it…here it goes…my best of 2014  (in no particular order)….ta da!!

  1. The Temples – Sun Structures : some of the best psych-pop out of the UK in years per Johnny Marr, Noel Gallagher and now me.  If the opening tracks “Shelter Song” or “Sun Structures” doesn’t make your booty move then you are just lame.  They are also, importantly, one of the coolest look bands on the planet.

2.  Interpol – El Pintor: after 2010’s disastrously forgettable self-titled album, the NYC post-punk darlings are back in full form.  While Kessler’s guitar playing gets a little tedious at times, El Pintor is still a great bunch of tunes that blend in well with earlier material.  They too are one of the coolest looking (and best dressed bands) on the planet.  Yes, I like cool looking bands.

3. Overlake - Sighs: said it all right here months back.  Still in super heavy rotation in my life.  The track “Our Sky” is one of the best songs ever written with a breakdown bridge starting at the 2:05 mark that will knock you on your ass.

4. The Gaslight Anthem – Get HurtRead this.  Probably their weakest album, but that is what is what makes it so endearingly intriguing.  The song “Dark Places” shatters my heart every time, especially after a couple of glasses of wine.

5. Life Eaters – Self Titled : Confession?  I only heard this debut record from this Jersey City group for the first time mere days ago, but it has been kicking me in the nuts ever since.  An extremely strong effort from start to finish.  The track “Man Pain”, is just absolutely killer.  If you don’t like it then guess what…yup, you lame.

6. The Hold Steady – Dream Teeth: A “typical” and “safe” Hold Steady album, but if you dip beneath the surface you will find a solid effort with all the stories, drugs, hardcore matinees and Jesus Christ references still intact.  At first listen, I was disappointed but the tracks grew on me tremendously to the point of becoming one of the year’s best.  I must admit I find the overall recording very weak (lacking ball crushing “umph” of 2008’s Stay Positive…so much guitar punch)but just listen beyond that….songs “Spinners” and “Big Cig” are two of many standout tracks.

I always enjoyed this short trailer for Dream Teeth , it captures the full essence of the album….

7. Miss Ohio – Whippoorwill Road:“delivering a perfect blend of power pop melody and guitar rock grit, with 5 songs that will no doubt make my personal best of 2014 release list” as I previously stated here and here and here!  and guess what, it did!  Besides they re-recorded my favorite song from them (“KGB”) so that is all that fucking matters…well unless they re-record “Picture Show…” (hint hint)….here is a funny video for another great gem off the record, “Bobby Fischer…”


8. Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers – Hypnotic Eye:  Tom and his heartbreaking team started a bar brawl, kicking everyone’s ass with this garage punk instant classic.


9. Big Ups – Eighteen Hours of Static This Brooklyn-based band plays punk/noise rock that torpedoes Fucked Up right out of the tub.  I hear me some Fugazi…Descendants?  Maybe even some Slint….may I dare mention later Black Flag or even Flipper? Their sounds is something so familiar that I still can’t define it and that is why they fucking rock and can’t stop listening to this album.  If you don’t like the 2 opening tracks (“Body Parts” and “Goes Black”) then you are….guess?

10. Johnny Marr – Playland :  Because it’s Johnny FUCKING Marr, yo……duh.

11. Real Estate – Atlas: A hearty blend of hypnotic, mellow, reverby poppy rock from Brooklyn, Atlas picks up where 2011’s Days paused.  A perfect background soundtrack for those long drives, house cleanings or annual best of  writings.

12. Thurston Moore – The Best Day: Back to his true form from 2013’s quasi-metal project, Chelsea Light Moving, The Best Day is his 4th solo effort and 1st since his highly visible divorce from Kim Gordon.   This album is very East Village, very “safe” (read: Sonic Youth) and very wonderful.  Moore continues to rock out in his own alternately tuned, droning , cool cat, hipster, subdued Neil Young  kind of way.  “Forevermore” and album title track are just 2 of many treats found here.  Besides, its Thurston fucking Moore…duh.


13.  We Were Promised Jetpacks- Unravelling :  These Scots quickly  remind us why 2009’s These Four Walls and 2011’s In The Pit of the Stomach are constantly listened to over and over as they continue to carry the post punk meets indie pop torch with this latest release.  Saw these cats live at NYC’s Webster Hall a few weeks back and they blew everyone away. Tracks “Safety in Numbers” and “Peaks and Troughs” are just two of many great songs.

14. Eastern Anchors-Dragging Your Axe Behind: I know I said a random list, but I also did save the best news for last.  Set to be released later this month, if 2012’s Drunken Arts And Pure Science have you begging for more and if you thought the first single “Above Your Station” off their latest EP kicked ass, wait until you hear the other 6 songs.  Oh boy……strap on in and wear a cup kiddies….



TONIGHT: at The Rock Shop Brooklyn – Eastern Anchors, Gladshot & Adam Rubenstein

TONIGHT: at The Rock Shop Brooklyn – Eastern Anchors, Gladshot & Adam Rubenstein

The Rock Shop Brooklyn Shows

TONIGHT WEDS JUNE 26th: This should be a great night of redefined indie rock all around at The Rock Shop in Brooklyn. First on the bill is Adam Rubenstein who was an ax-man in the band Chamberlain. Who is evangelizing his release Excavator via Arctic Rodeo Recordings.So get there early. Like by 8:15.

Following his jams wil be Review Stalker Music Blogs’s house band Eastern Anchors. If you don’t own any Anchor swag you should. Since you already have all music right if not get on the bandcamp? Seriously, folks come for the handsome and leave with the rock stapled back in their heart. Do check out the latest lead track called “It Made Me Cry” on the Songs for Molina Compilation put out out by Steven Vineis which was recently featured on My Old Kentucky Blog.

Sewing up the night will be local, locals Gladshot. We hear their previous release was done up by our twitter pal John Agnello. He owes RS Blog a cocktail but either way from way back during a Male Bonding rant last year. Either-who they will be bringing melodies galore.

Singer-songwriters Debbie Andrews and Mike Blaxill front this quintet…great harmony-laced pop with a touch of 70s California. Infectious songs like “Feel You” and “Running Past Rosetta” should be drop-kicking inferior tripe off radio playlists everywhere. They have everything – sing-a-long hooks, strong harmonies, efficient but great guitar solos .. Gladshot is one of the nicest suprises I have had all year
– Pop Matters




Live Video Indie Rocker – Zac Clark Tycoon

Always love it when a music fan puts so much energy into seeing live music. Zac Clark the Rocker Tycoon is one of those open minded guys that cares and comes armed with cameras in tow and stands in the front row. He made one song videos for Frankie and his Fingers, No Pasaran!, Eastern Anchors, and Binky Bianca at a recent Jersey City show at the IMAC. I wish there were more folks like them and not just those mp3 bloggers or reviewers who hide behind their blog. It’s refreshing and helps that the quality is good too! Friday nights are for dancing after all

Show #24 Holiday Cheer for 2008

Show #24 Holiday Cheer for 2008

Well the new year is almost upon on and with that comes our annual Christmas show with some mirth. Really mostly rock but in Show #24 Some Holiday Cheer we got covered with new tunes by No Age, Trail of Dead, Young Widows. Plus local NJ music by an old band from Westfield called Animation. Buzzkill New Brunswick, New stuff by the Eastern Anchors and Transilvia. Add to that a bunch of Xmas stuff mixed in.

Dig the noise rock? Dig the Eastern Anchors from NJ

Dig the noise rock? Dig the Eastern Anchors from NJ

Hey so Eastern Anchors are about to drop anchors on our shores as they dock up at Trax East and begin the mastering process for the full length debut. The sirens are talking and it may include LP version. If you like trail of dead, sonic youth, hot snakes, hum or poster children chances are these mates are right up your alley. For a few ale swilling downloads grab some free tracks from last.fm. The album has been a long time coming.

Support Artists on last.fm just by listening!

Support Artists on last.fm just by listening!

The time has come where every small town garage band can get paid directly by advertising depending on songs played directly on last.fm by their Artist Royalty program! (Not download)I didn’t believe it at first when announced this past January but only time will tell when the first reports come in this October. This is a huge leap for music fans supporting their favorite artists. Caveat is you don’t belong to a online collection company that has the online rights and you must own world wide distribution. I’m no lawyer but I think US $10.00 @ .005 a play is 200,000 plays? That is a lot of ad revenue or page views! So start listening to stuff online as much you like.

Start playing and get some Free music by:
The smooth indie rock sounds of The Slow Wire
The almighty noise rock anthems by Aviso’Hara | Own it on Emusic
The old-skool classic jersey alt-punk-rock of Psychic Fair
Albini produced and tweaked indie rock of Bubblegum Thunder
Brought to you by your fine friends from Headphone Music Recordings.

Here is the payment terms fine print:

>for the free radio service, 10% of the Share of Last.fm’s Net Revenue from the free radio service.

for the personalised premium radio service, the greater of 10% of the Share of Last.fm’s Net Revenue from the personalised radio service or US $0.0005 for each complete transmission on the personalised radio service of a track which forms part of Your Content transmitted on the Last.fm service.

>for the free on-demand service, 30% of the Share of Last.fm’s Net Revenue from the free on-demand service.

>for the premium on-demand service, the greater of 30% of the Share of Last.fm’s Net Revenue from the premium on-demand service or US $0.005 for each complete transmission on the prepaid or subscription on-demand service of a track which forms part of Your Content transmitted on the Last.fm service.

Eastern Anchors Interview and Brighton rock Sat March 29

Eastern Anchors Interview and Brighton rock Sat March 29

The Eastern Anchors have been planning this day for awhile, countless hours of drinking beer at practice, breaking strings, smoking breaks. Walter Verde even joined the Glass Trees for a week so he could go to SXSW; but like the good indie rock celebrity he is he took the time do an interview to promote the first show of the year for the Asbury Park press. Read the Eastern Anchors interview Making Some Noise. The article almost 100% accurate. Album is in the works but probably won’t be out for at least a couple months and is as of yet untitled.

Eastern Anchors

w/ Bald Guy Black Suit (featuring morgan and brian) 10pm
Sat 3/29
Brighton Bar

long branch, nj the home of Jacko one of the oldest bearded punks with pirate breath. Also on the bill are The Thieves of Leviticus and Dose.