State Champion Records Has Arrived


State Champion Records celebrated their label’s launch with a show at WFMU’s Monty Hall on July 9, and goddamn do they know how to throw a party!  The show featured a stacked lineup of local favorites Spowder, Snakeskin, and Decoration.  State Champion Records has only been in existence since April of this year,  and they’ve wasted absolutely no time making a major impact on the local scene.

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Jean Pool Saves the Elephants and DIY


I’m writing this review of Jean Pool’s new album, Save the Elephants, and the subsequent album release extravaganza about an hour after leaving the show.  I regret that it’s taken me even this long to do it, but I felt that it was urgent to get in the shower as soon as possible to wash away any chance of ringworm.  It was hot, humid night in a building with no AC, fans, or open windows, filled with sweaty, moshing punks.  It’s that kind of show filth that you don’t notice until after the encore, the lights come on, and you make the transition from Teen Wolf back into a somewhat functional member of society.  But, now that I’ve done all I can to mitigate the risk of fungal infections – Jean Pool.

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Shred Flintstone Drops Cartoon Physics on You Fools


Have you ever watched the Flintstones or eaten Fruity Pebbles? Well then, I’m sure you must’ve heard that SHRED FLINTSTONE has come out with their first EP, Cartoon Physics, released on the Sniffling Indie Kids label. For those who aren’t in the know, Shred Flintstone is the spawn of Jean Pool guitarist Dan Barrechia with Bridget Bakie on bass and Joey Giambra on drums.  Cartoon physics is the perfect album for the summer.  These five songs will get you dancing before the opening, “Happy Song,” even comes to an end.  This first track has such a nostalgic feel to it, I can almost convince myself that when I was twelve my friends and I used to dance in my bedroom to it while Jason Biggs made sloppy love to a pie.

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D.I.Y. Night at the Groov Cafe


Last week, Terrapin Productions, a project of Sunflower drummer Tyler Curtis, hosted a banger of an event in Montclair featuring five acts, including Banana on tour from, our neighbor to the north, Massachusetts.  The show was held at The Groov Café, which, the show aside, is a great place to go for some fresh juice and has an unbeatable brunch, for all of you avocado-toast loving millennials out there. 

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Farewell to the Bomb Shelter


In many ways, the concept of D.I.Y. is what binds this scene together more than anything else.  And I know the obvious response to that is, “Hey jackass, what about music?” But what this scene really means and is about isn’t necessarily the music as an art form in and of itself. The Philharmonic is music; Top 40 is music.  The true defining characteristic of this scene is the do it yourself mentality, the pure creative drive to make what isn’t there and to do so under your own authority.  D.I.Y. has given us more than just the music.  It has given us record labels, publications, festivals, merchandise, venues – and no place in the world feels more like home than a good D.I.Y. venue.  Last weekend marked the end of a good one

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Local Favorites Share the Brighton Stage with Hot Rod Circuit


So, the warm summer weather we’ve all been waiting for finally arrived last week, and we were blessed with a few 90 degree days.  But, with the good comes the bad, and that can only mean Garden State Parkway summer, rush hour traffic.  Sitting in that clusterfuck from Montclair all the way down to Long Branch doesn’t sound like the ideal way to spend a Thursday evening, but when at one end is a show at the Brighton Bar featuring Toy Cars, Rocky and the Chapter, and – are you shitting me? – Hot Rod Circuit, you can bet I’ll be hauling ass at a blazing 7mph for the entire 60 miles.  Don’t worry; I made it with plenty of time to spare.

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