Merry Mint 400 Christmas from Yawn Mower, Tiegan, and More

Mint 400 Records set out to accomplish one thing when it formed in 2007, and that was bringing quality music to the masses. This year finishes up with a re-release of Mint 400’s Christmas Compilation that is sure to satisfy even the Grinchiest of us all. The compilation is a collection of 12 previously released epics that features label veterans such as The One and Nines, Fairmont, The Ashes and label newcomers Les Trois Chaud and The Duke of Norfolk


Simple Perfection in Joy Cleaner’s Total Hell

I hate end of all the end of year countdowns with a passion.  All the “best of whatevers” to feed someone’s ego and narcissism in such a way that their opinion can quantify and reduce art to fit the formula of some weak-ass, bullshit “countdown.”  To make music a subjective competition is counter productive to the general purpose of this community.

That being said, Joy Cleaner‘s debut full length album Total Hell would absolutely be one of my sleeper picks that should be on everyone’s “album of the year” list.  Originally released back in July by Jigsaw Records, the album has just recently been re-released in a special, limited run on pink vinyl.  I’ve already got mine.  You should go ahead and get your copy NOW!


New EP From Fascinations Grand Chorus

Fascinations Grand Chorus’ third EP, Anglesea, comes out today, Friday, December 8th, a self-described “audio experiment of pop stylings.” This EP features the band’s range of styles, yet still feels cohesive. Despite their competitive songwriting, there’s no hint of tension on this EP; it flows smoothly track after track.

Starting out with “When You’re Mine,” the duo gives us an accessible door into the rest of the album, with familiar light, muted vocals and rollicking indie-pop feel. Its fluid, upbeat chord progressions make the song seem like a carefree trip through a jellybean forest (you know, one of the many Great Jellybean Forests of North America). It’s got that delicious indie pop feel, with Stephanie’s light vocals and Andrew’s lively drums. Combined with Stephanie’s killer keyboard, the result is a sound much larger than you’d expect from two people.


“Have a Great Summer” Should Go Hide for the Winter

A few months ago, John Cozz of John Cozz and the Squirts released his latest EP, titled Have a Great Summeror HAGS if you have so little time for him that you can’t even say three whole words and an indefinite article. In the most narcissistic move since naming the band after himself and calling the other guys “Squirt 1 & 2,”  Cozz, felt the need to venture into the realm of multimedia with a film release, a film in which even less people asked for than Transformers: Last Knight (Yes, the fifth one.  No, I didn’t realize they made five until just now either).

Yet, to his credit, there was one single line from the movie that really resonated with me.  “Who the fuck do you think you are, John Cozz?”


A Thankful Thanksgiving at the Meatlocker

Thanksgiving Eve turned out to be a fitting occasion to have a show featuring six of Northern Jersey’s acclaimed bands – Sunflower, LKFFCT, Whiner, Trü, Smock, and Shred Flintstone, gathering to celebrate Tyler Curtis’ birthday. Though some groups have been around longer than others (scene veterans LKFFCT, for instance, are somewhat of a collective “father figure” at this point), all of these musicians have been supporting each other for years, as well as the whole music scene of the greater Montclair area.


Shellshag and Co Remind Us What Punk Rock Is All About

Of course, every punk show is special.  They get your blood pumping and make you feel alive in a way that’s both positive and creative but also a little bit rebellious and destructive.  Of course, that’s why we all do this – to scratch an itch that most other things just fucking can’t.  But, while of course, every punk show is special, some are still undeniably specialer.  You’ve ready Animal Farm?

This past Thanksgiving weekend, Volume IV in New Brunswick hosted Brooklyn punk rock OG’s Shellshag playing a show with Cincinnati anti-folk singer/songwriter John Hays, State Champion Records’ Sweaty, featuring label co-owner King Mike, and newcomers Torpedoes in their second show ever.  This show was one of the specialer ones.

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