Category Archives: Entertainment

Ra Ra Riot – The Orchard


So, it’s been awhile. Things have been hectic in these parts of A&SB land, mainly because “the man” has been breathing down our neck… and being a small business owner I guess I am “the man” I speak of and I also guess that my neck is broken in order for my head to be positioned in a way for my mouth to reach around to the back of my head. In other words… whoops!

This doesn’t mean we haven’t been feverishly listening to music, going to shows and eagerly on the hunt for something new, something great. Great records are a necessity when working long hours, they help pass the time quickly and let you jump on and off the unbalanced boat of being relaxed and stressed. The Orchard by Ra Ra Riot is one of those records I’ve found that gives me that serenity during the work day and I hope it does the same for you. I will admit that there is no song on it that even compares to the lead-off track on their last record, “Ghost Under Rocks”, but as a unit from beginning to end, this album surpasses the last one as a cohesive piece of art rather than some good tracks here and there.

Original Guided By Voices lineup reunites for greatest show of all time

Matador Records is turning 21 and to celebrate they’re throwing the greatest goddamn party of all time. From October 1st – October 3rd in Las Vegas, NV they will be gathering their classic lineup from ’93 – ’96, including Guided By Voices featuring their original lineup (Tobin Sprout?!). Other artists include Lineup includes Pavement, Sonic Youth, Come, Belle & Sebastion, Spoon, Cat Power, Chavez, Yo La Tengo, The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion & many more.This is good news.

Tickets go on sale Friday, July 9th on so get ready to sit in front of your computer and hit the refresh button until they’re available because this will sell out rapidly.

I will leave you with “The Official Ironmen Rally Song”:

Stars Doesn’t Want Your Body

I have a soft spot for Stars, even for this new track which blatantly goes out of its way to explore a whole new world of fans throughout commercial radio. It’s catchy… very catchy and there is nothing wrong with that. My 17 year old, angst-ridden self would be mad at my 28 year old self for saying that… but that little prick had a big mouth and I’m trying to forget him anyway.

“I Don’t Want Your Body” and “Fixer” are from their fifth LP release, The Five Ghosts, which hit stores on June 21st via Vagrant Records in the US. Check out the video for their first single, “Fixer”, after the jump.

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Ceremony – Rohnert Park [Review]


The first time I put on Ceremony’s new record, Rohnert Park, I knew I’d heard it somewhere before. The promotional material told me I was supposed to be reminded of protopunk and 80s hardcore. RIYL Fucked Up, Black Flag, and the Stooges. Maybe. But that didn’t sound quite right.

Then it clicked. On Rohnert Park, Ceremony reminds me of Flipper, the San Francisco punk band that didn’t tune, played terribly and slowly, and featured irritatingly repetitive vocals. Flipper hopped on hardcore bills just to mess with the scene’s expectations. And they were awesome for it. Ceremony takes a similar approach, and this record is already dividing hardcore kids.

Rohnert Park begins with “Into the Wayside Part I” (of III) and leads directly into the first true song of the record, “Sick.” On “Sick,” vocalist Ross Farrar lists a whole bunch of stuff he’s sick of, including 20 year old bands like Cro-Mags and Black Flag (presumably because they rhyme), politics domestic and international (realism?), and even–you guessed it–sick of being sick.

“M.C.D.F.” swings awkwardly, and “Moving Principle” rails against the modern world (hate that thing). The next track, “The Doldrums (Friendly City),” is a slogging three minutes of piercing single note melodies and jangling guitars, torpedoing the momentum of the first few tracks. Later in the record, Ceremony offers the No Trend -esque “Into the Wayside II,” which forgoes lyrics in favor of a story about saving some old guy (I think), and includes an ill-advised guitar solo.

The album continues with four indistinguishable minute-and-change songs, and then, inexplicably, it gets great.

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