Shows of Note – The Boys of Summer

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With humble beginnings in the basement of one member and dive bars all over the world, The Ataris have eighteen years of experience under their belt and have definitely paid their dues as a punk rock band.

The+Ataris+_With five full-length studio albums under their belt, So Long, Astoria in 2003 was their first platinum album selling over a million copies. The album included “The Boys of Summer,” which was punk rock song even your mom liked.  More recently, the band has released Welcome the Night in 2007 and a two song release in 2010 which has fans dying for more. The two songs released in 2010 will be on The Ataris’ new album. The Ataris’ next album is set to be named “The Graveyard of the Atlantic,” but no official release date has been announced.  The two songs released in 2010 will be on The Ataris’ new album.

The Ataris’ “So Long, Astoria Reunion Tour will mark the first time in a decade the original Ataris line-up will be together. Like most bands, The Ataris have had their share of band members coming and going. The Ataris will perform the whole So Long, Astoria album from start to finish at every show and they claim this is the last time the founding members will perform together.

The Ataris will be coming to the northwest on March 11 at Hawthorne Theatre in Portland, March 12 at The Showbox in Seattle and March 13 at the Knitting Factory in Boise. The ‘Burg is giving away tickets to the Seattle show so be sure to tune-in to the All-Star Rock Show with Chuck Taylor tomorrow (02/24) between 3 and 6 p.m. for a chance to win!

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Throwback Thursday – February 1994

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If Nirvana‘s Nevermind was responsible for effectively killing the age of hair metal with its dynamic hard hitting music and the gravely voice of Kurt Cobain, then Green Day‘s Dookie brought us out of the haze of grunge and over produced pop music. With Dookie, Green Day made punk music commercially acceptable. Dookie flipped the bird to authority and convention while smiling in the frowning face of grunge music. Dookie swept three snot nosed punks off of the streets of Berkley, California and in a wave of youthful rebellion and teenage angst, Dookie inspired a generation and served as a launching pad for one of the most successful bands in the world. This month, the diamond certified album turns twenty and is just as relatable in 2014 as it was in 1994.

2012GreenDayDookie950G211112In 1992, Green Day released Kerplunktheir second studio album through the independent, Lookout! Records. Pop-punk hooks and lyrics caught the attention of Rob Cavallo who was junior A&R scout at Reprise Records. Cavallo signed the band and agreed to produce Dookie. While the punk scene in Berkley disowned them, the rest of America loved Green Day after their legendary performance at Wood Stalk 1994, which was dubbed “Mudstock” after the band started a mud fight with the crowd. Dookie produced five hit singles, won them a Grammy for Best Alternative Music Album, and to date, has sold over 8 million copies in the United States. With Feb. 1, 2014 marking the 20th anniversary of Dookie’s release we’ve put together a track by track examination of one of punk’s favorite albums.

1. Burnout : Billie Joe Armstrong sings “I declare I don’t care no more”  to open this misfit’s manifesto. It’s the perfect opening line for a major label debut of a post-Nirvana album filled with teenage angst and hormonal rage. It’s a two minute burst of buzzsaw guitar and snotty hooks that sets the tone for the album.

2. Having a Blast: The band keeps the early album energy going here with the angsty “Having a Blast.” Armstrong sings about tying explosives to himself, “think about the times we’ve spent and what they’ve meant” in this breakup rant. Melodic hooks over choppy guitars keeps the edge alive early in the album.

3. Chump “Chump” follows the model laid down by bands like the Ramones and Sex Pistols. “Chump is punchy and likable in its own right, its most memorable moment is probably its closing guitar swells and drum groove. This would lay the ground work  for Dookie’s first big hit.

4. Longview Best known for Mike Dirnt’s infectious walking bass line, this is song where the three Green Day instruments are used in such isolation that the whole band deserves recognition for selling their parts and adding to the eventual buildup. Starting with Dirnt’s Bass lines and Tre Cool’s Slow intense drumming, it’s when Armstrong’s driving power chords kick in, that the song reaches the apex of it’s adolescent rock catchiness.

5. Welcome to Paradise: This was the Only Kerplunk track to be re-recorded for the major label debut. While similar to the three opening tracks, but with a more socially aware hook, this song is a tribute to the band’s humble surroundings and would become Dookie’s second single.

6. Pulling Teeth: Though this song never achieved the “a classic Dookie single” status, “Pulling Teeth” shows off Armstrong’s songwriting skills. With a Beatles-like melody in the verses, as usual, Armstrong is in a distressed state, pledging his allegiance to his girl-friend even though it is obviously an abusive relationship.

7. Basket Case: The distress of “Pulling Teeth” is almost a prelude to Armstrong’s mental torment by covering his anxiety attacks and panic disorder diagnosis. “Basket Case” became one of Dookie’s”biggest hits, with Green Day fans relating and singing along.

8. She The fifth and final single from the album. The band continues whipping out more rapid-fire punk riffs and sneering melodic hooks. Armstrong wrote the song in response to a feminist poem his ex-girlfriend showed him; she then dumped him and moved to Ecuador.

9. Sassafras Roots: With the pop-punk barrage of noise hardly slowing down, Armstrong sings what sounds like a conversation with himself about getting ready to call a crush on the phone. “I’m always like you with nothing else to do; can I waste your time, too?” when in reality, it was written about the same ex-girlfriend that inspired “Chump” and “She.”

10. When I Come Around: If there’s one track that pushes the album from punk rock to straight up rock, its “When I Come Around.” Green Day proved themselves to classic rock fans and it’s no surprise this song is still heard on rock radio. “When I Come Around” showed Greenday’s rock aspirations for the first time.

11. Coming Clean: In one of the record’s often forgotten songs, Armstrong offers some of his most confessional lyrics, opening up about questioning his sexuality: “I’ve found out what it takes to be a man; now mom and dad will never understand what’s happening to me.”

12. Emenius Sleepus : This song continues the trend of brief, less-than-two-minute tracks. “Emenius Sleepus” helps close out the album a tale about an old friend that comes off a tad underwritten compared to other cuts. Although “Emenius Sleepus” is the only song on the album with lyrics written by bassist Mike Dirnt.

13. In the End: Another brief melodic song, at this point, the album reverts to a more familiar flow for a punk album with a heavy Operation Ivy feel that inspired Green Day in the first place. But even when operating with less than two minutes, the band preserves the classic verse/chorus/bridge pop structure.

14. F.O.D. : While it’s not quite Good Riddance (Time of Your Life).”  Green Day closes the album of charged-up punk songs with an acoustic guitar. Well, until the electric guitars ruin the whole wet dream right around the minute and a half mark. The title stands for “f&*# off and die” with Armstrong sending a literal good riddance.

15. All By Myself (hidden track): If you made it through the silence after “F.O.D.” you will find this hidden track, written and sung by Tré Cool. It was sadly or happily, (depending on how you feel about songs sung by drummers about masturbation) his last major vocal contribution to Green Day.

Take some time to listen to an album that revolutionized the music industry and the minds of America’s youth.

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Shows of Note – Music to Wear Kilts To

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Biffy Clyro is a Scottish rock band and have released six studio albums, three of them reached the top five in the UK album charts. The band claimed their first number one album in the UK Albums Chart with their sixth studio album, Opposites released in 2013.

Biffy Clyro

Biffy Clyro

The band cite influences ranging from heavy metal legends like Metallica to prog-rock legends legends Rush. Reviewers are often quick to link their sound to the likes of Nirvana and Foo Fighters – particularly in their use of shifting dynamics which they adapted from Pixies.  In 2013 Biffy Clyro won the Kerrang! award for Best Album and the NME award for best British band.

Biffy Clyro will be playing in the northwest at The Showbox on February 9th and the Doug Fir Lounge in Portland on February 10th. The ‘Burg will be giving away tickets to the Seattle show tonight (1/27) between 6 and 8 p.m. so be sure to tune-in for your chance to win.

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Shows of Note – Post Punk Era

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We’ve come to love British imports here at the station. From the Arctic Monkeys to Franz Ferdinand, to The Wombats and Frightened Rabbit, we have to accept the Brits know how to make quality indie music. White Lies has become one of those indie bands we appreciate. A little darker than your average indie band, White Lies makes music for those with a love for a little more hard-hitting indie rock.

White Lies

White Lies

The trio of men that make up White Lies include Harry McVeigh (singer/guitarist), Charles Cave (Bassist) and Jack Lawrence-Brown (drummer/keyboardist). Originally from London, their debut album To Lose My Life was released in 2009. It’s obvious that White Lies draws heavy influence from the ‘80s English post-punk era and that has continued through the release of all their three albums and EP. Most recently, White Lies has experienced a great reception from fans and critics with the 2013 release of Big Tv.

Consequence of Sound saying this about Big Tv:

“…once you’ve heard it, it will haunt you. It’s full of pitch-perfect songs, but it will lead to digging for the real emotion, the heart buried somewhere at the center.”

White Lies will be performing in the northwest on February 7 in Seattle at The Showbox and February 8th at Roseland Theater in Portland. The ‘Burg is giving away tickets to White Lies tonight between 8 and 10 p.m. tonight (1/27) so tune-in for your chance to win!

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Throwback Thursday – January 1976

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The Sex Pistols played at Watford College in England on January 23, 1976. This would be the first of 65 gigs in the “Anarchy in the U.K.” tour of 1976. The tour would Feature the Sex Pistols, The Clash, and The Damned. This tour goes down in history as one of the shortest, yet most influential tours ever, due to the fact that half of the shows were canceled because of the reputation the three punk bands had gained. By the end of the tour, the three bands were banned from playing in many of the major cities and towns throughout the U.K. When the Sex Pistols returned home to London, punk had blown up and was the newest “kiddy fad.” The impact of the tour was felt across the U.K. and even in America as word spread that a filthy punk band from England was breaking down walls.

Sex Pistols

Sex Pistols

The “Anarchy in the U.K.” tour is viewed as the beginning of the Sex Pistols’s rise to fame, but also as the beginning of the end of the band. The tour included a memorable showcase gig held during London’s first punk festival, at the 100 Club in Oxford Street, which featured the band Siouxsie and the Banshies (staring future sex pistols bassist Sid Vicious) and the Sex Pistols would go on to sign with major label EMI. The band’s first single,”Anarchy in the U.K.” was released on  November 26, 1976 and served as a statement of angst, anger and youthful energy. By the time the song was released, the Sex Pistols were known to be obnoxious revolutionaries and their single only added to the reputation. The Sex Pistols would be dropped by EMI 30 days later and were picked up by A&M records almost immediately.

The behavior of the Sex Pistols brought them just as much national attention as their music. December 1, 1976 the band would create a storm of publicity during an early evening live broadcast of Thames Television’s “Today” program. The band was appearing as a last-minute replacement for Queen, and their entourage took full advantage of the green room facilities, consuming large amounts of alcohol and creating an overall ruckus. During the interview, lead singer Johnny Rotten created a stir by using the word “s–t” and “dirty sod” while host Bill Grundy, (who was drunk at the time) flirted openly with Siouxsie Sioux. Grundy encouraged the band to continue with the language telling them they had five seconds to say something outrageous. In classic Sex Pistols form, Jones called Grundy a “dirty old man,” “dirty bastard,” “dirty “f—–r” and a  ”f—-n rotter.”

Even though the program was only broadcast in London, the public display of anger and violence occupied the tabloid newspapers for days. The Daily Mirror famously ran the headline ‘”The Filth and the Fury“, while the Daily Express led with “Punk? Call it Filthy Lucre.” Thames Television suspended Grundy, and though he was later reinstated, the interview effectively ended his career.

The interview resulted in a full blown media circus with newspapers reporting that the band spat on their fans, puked on fans and even had sex on stage. The band’s growing reputation would both attract and detour media and fans alike.

The Sex Pistols go down in history as one of the most influential bands of all time and the “Anarchy in the U.K.” tour will forever be recognized as one of the defining moments in punk music.Though the Sex Pistols only hand one album and were really only a band for two years, they have been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Bands such as Guns N’ Roses, Rancid, Green Day, blink-182, and Motley Crue have openly admitted the Sex Pistols’s heavy influence in their own sound. The band’s unique individuality has carried on in virtually every field of music and their presence is felt in all different forms of rock.

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Shows of Note – Reely Reely Cool

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Truly legends in not only the specialty genre of ska but the whole rock band population, Reel Big Fish is a band that has proven ska music can have a wide appeal.

Reel Big Fish

Reel Big Fish

RBF formed in 1992, a year in which many of the students at CWU were born. The band has continued to produce solid punk rock tunes, with over ten studio produced albums. The band also has greatest hits, live and acoustic albums along with a few EPs to their name. With that arsenal of music in their back pocket RBF is known to put on one of the best rock shows around with over 250 show dates a year to their thousands of almost cult-like fans.

Candy Coated Fury is RBF’s most recent accomplishment, released in July of 2012. In the spirit of ska, many of RBF’s song take a less serious tone. Candy Coated Fury includes classics such as “Your Girlfriend Sucks,” “I Know You Too Well To Like You Anymore” and “Everyone Else Is An A*****e.”

The band is old, but has been through a through a lot of change with only one founding member, lead singer Aaron Barrett left. In an interview with freelance journalist Marcus Beard, Barrett had this to say:

“I feel like I used to be a lot more clever and funny. I’m old,” he laments while his eyes wander around the room. “Monkeys for Nothing was leftover bullshit.”

Not too serious but at times too dark for mom, Reel Big Fish has continued to attract a throng of faithful supporters. The band will be performing in the northwest at Hawthorne Theatre in Portland on January 10, Showbox at the Market in Seattle on January 11 and The Knitting Factory in Spokane on January 13. Tune-in to The ‘Burg tonight (12/3) between 3 and 6 p.m. for a chance to win tickets to the Seattle show.

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Fresh Tunes – Coliseum Releases Sister Faith

Coliseum

Coliseum proves once again that less is more on their 5th studio album titled Sister Faith; their throwback 90′s indie alternative rock before the term “indie” even existed, conjures up images of annoying hipsters shopping at Pac Sun. This album is proof that a modern band can be full of aggression and heaviness yet still make an album with practically no “bells and whistles.”

Sister Faith

Sister Faith

While other punk artists fill their music with layers upon layers of guitars backed by a deep rhythm section, Coliseum build’s their songs around melodies and riffs without giving up the integrity of either one  Sister Faith is a classic-sounding album full of straightforward in-your-face rock ‘n roll songs. There are hints of their heavier past,  “Doing Time” pounds out a mid-tempo Dead Kennedy-esque riff, and the five-plus minute “Love Under Will” is driven by bassist Kayhan Vaziri’s thick bass line along side Patterson’s vocals and a alternative sounding guitar that is bit more distant. “Under The Blood Of The Moon” is cut from a similar cloth; impressively, it paints an even darker picture through haunting Misfits like vocals with bass and guitar riff’s that are reminiscent of early Nine Inch Nails.

The back end of Sister Faith is filled with energy, with such songs as “Black Magic Punks”, the upbeat and heavy “Bad Will”. It all ends with an interesting song named “Fuzzbang,” which explodes in its harmonic distorted guitars and is backed by a top notch bass line, this tune could be easily mistaken for a Torche song. “Fuzzbang” is a great way to end the fun, yet heavy album, in which Coliseum show their heavier metal past while creating their punk present.

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Shows of Note – Less Than Nothing

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Less Than Jake is older than many of the students at Central Washington University and for good reason. The ska/punk band formed in 1992 out of Gainesville, Fla making them 21 years old, which is quite a long time in band years. It’s a survival of the fittest mentality in the music biz and Less Than Jake’s ability to adapt and change, in their words, has allowed the band to make “cannonball-sized splashes in the deep end while many of its peers timidly eye shallow waters.”

Less Than Jake

Less Than Jake

Less Than Jake’s most recent album See The Light dropped today (Nov. 12). The album has not let fans down, some going as far to say See The Light is Less Than Jake’s best in the last 13 years.  Dyingscene.com, whose slogan reads “news for the punks, by the punks,” gave the album five out of five stars saying:

“Overall, I’d probably rank ‘See The Light’ as one of my top 3 favorite Less Than Jake records …Though some of you may just see this as another decent addition to the band’s extensive catalog, I think it’s one of the most diverse records LTJ have ever put out, with some of the strongest lyrics they’ve ever written (see ‘The Troubles’ and ‘A Short History Lesson’).On top of that, it’s probably the most well-produced album the band’s ever put out! … There’s not too much “studio magic” going on, but there’s not too little either. It sounds just right.”

The band is on tour promoting their new album and will be in the Pacific Northwest Nov. 26 at the Showbox at the Market in Seattle and Nov. 27 at the Hawthorne Theater in Portland. Chuck Taylor will be giving away a pair of tickets to the Seattle concert, tonight (11/12) on the All-Star Rock Show between 3 and 6 p.m.  We will also be giving away a pair tomorrow, (11/13) between 6 and 8 p.m. Multiple chances to win but ya gotta tune-in!

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That’s So Punk Rock

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What people often don’t realize about 88.1 The ‘Burg is that we aren’t just alternative or Top 40. We love us some punk rock as well. That’s why we’re pumped to be giving away tickets to veteran band, Alkaline Trio.

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The trio formed in late 1996 and consists of Matt Skiba on guitar and vocals, Dan Adriano on bass and Derek Grant on the drums. Known for their catchy hooks, upbeat tempo and darker lyrics, usually about drugs, depression and alcohol, Alkaline Trio’s most recent album took a slight step outside their norm.

My Shame is True dropped March 29 and is supposedly about Skiba’s recent breakup. His girlfriend even appears on the cover of the album. The album is receiving mixed review with Sputnik Music saying:

“On My Shame Is True he (Skiba) sounds much more open and vulnerable than on previous efforts which allows these well-worn themes to sound fresh and new.” 

The rating gave the album 3.5 stars out 5 and overall, thought the album better than previous efforts by the band. Amplified Magazine had more to say in their review of the album:

“All in all, this album won’t please everyone. Fans of the band’s early work will find very little on this album that is reminiscent of either Goddamnit! or Maybe I’ll Catch Fire, but that doesn’t mean this is a bad album.”

The wonderful thing about the album is that it gives a glimpse into the life of the artists. This isn’t a punk rock album produced with the sole intent of causing a ruckus and pissing your parents off. As Skiba told SPIN Magazine:

“I went through a lot since the last record and this one, like going straight out of a gnarly divorce into a really great, beautiful relationship that came to an end just as we started writing My Shame Is True,” he told SPIN. “I just wrote this one more as like a love letter to my ex-girlfriend or an apology note set to music.”

88.1 The ‘Burg wants you to decide whether Alkaline Trio’s new stuff is good or not. That’s why we’re giving away multiple tickets to their show at Showbox at the Market on June 7. If you can’t attend that show the trio will be performing at Hawthorne Theater in Portland, June 8. Be sure and checkout our Facebook and ‘Burg app for details on how you can win!

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