Saturday, December 26, 2009

Interview with Andy Poliakoff of Virginia Coalition

Way back in 2008 I interviewed Andy Poliakoff from Virginia Coalition. If you don't know VACO, I recommend you check out their latest CD, Home This Year. Many more interview transcripts are to come, since it's what I do in my free time.

What’s the story behind your band? How did you guys all meet?
We all grew up in the same town, Alexandria, Virginia. We originally just wanted to get together in somebody’s basement, make a racket, and a few of us decided that we really wanted to keep playing. A friend of ours booked us a gig at a small club in Georgetown. We played the show and we got hooked. Playing live is just incredible … we actually went to the high school that "Remember the Titans" was filmed at.

How did you pick your name?
We were all away at college and would come back on breaks to play shows. We didn’t have a name and since we’d all go away to college away from Virginia and think “I can’t wait to get back to Virginia and play music”, we just felt like we were this coalition of like minded musicians who wanted to play music together. We had a really strong connection with our hometown, our home state, and it just seemed like everything that happened to us happened in Virginia. So, it seemed to fit.

Who are your major influences?
We grew up listening to everything from Paul Simon to Metallica to Mozart. We love all music.

How would you describe your sound?
I think people say we sound a lot like the Barenaked Ladies or O.A.R. or Dave Matthews. We hear those names a lot. We don’t know if that’s true. We don’t really know what we actually sound like. It’s hard to know what you sound like. You have to sort of depend on other people for that one.

You guys are famous for the energy at your shows. How do you get to that level of excitement every night?
I don’t know if you or a lot of the people reading this have been on stage, but there’s a lot of nervous energy on stage and you’ve got to find a place to put that and sometimes stuff just sort of boils up inside you and you start getting electrified and you act crazy. You can’t explain it offstage. We just have such a good time. We all look at music as a way to make something melodic and uplifting, and I think our live shows are a lot like that. We just want to have positive energy flowing and see people happy and having a great time. Sometimes an audience just needs to see you projecting excitement and then it becomes contagious.

What is the most embarrassing thing that has ever happened on stage?
Lots of crazy things that I probably shouldn’t tell you. Ummm …. Our drummer’s had to run off stage to use the restroom. Let’s just say it wasn’t the pretty stuff. One time we toured with Sister Hazel and they had all of their crew in bizarre costumes and they just came on and started taking our stuff off stage during our set and messing up the tuning on our instruments. It was crazy.

Was that an end of tour prank?
Yeah. It was. Oh man. End of tour pranks …

How would you say your sound has developed over the years?
We’ve gotten a lot more excited about making music for the purpose of really communicating messages of hopefulness or "positivity" that we feel. We’ve always been about the live show, but as we’ve gotten older we’ve been like “Who are we?” I think no matter what age you are, as you mature, you ask, “Who am I? What am I?” and we said we want to be people who change something. People who commentate on all the things in life, sadness and happiness and jealousy and love, things that really touch people. The essence of that is just to write songs that are lyrically meaningful.

Do you prefer touring or working in the studio?
I prefer touring. Definitely. It’s way harder but it’s just so much more rewarding. I’m definitely a musician and I love music and that’s why I do what I do, but I really love performing for people. I can’t speak for the whole band obviously, so the other guys might like the studio better. I just love to be in front of people and make a fool out of myself and connect with people. I just really adore it.

What is your songwriting process:
On songwriting: “The essence … is just to write songs that are lyrically meaningful.
The process is just to get together. In the past, we did more writing on our own. We would write stuff separately and then come together when a song was done and work on it. For our new record “Home This Year” we all got together and wrote all of the songs together and that was the first time we’d done that. We also worked with a couple professional songwriters and that was an interesting process. But as a band, we pretty much go in a room, we lock ourselves in it and say “Okay.” As far as chord progression stuff, we come up with that on our own and then we go in as a group and work until the song is finished. If it doesn’t sound good on an acoustic guitar with vocal harmonies, we just drop it. There’s all these crazy … sounds that they can do in the studio that make stuff sound cool, but we want it to sound good on an acoustic guitar. We don’t dress stuff up ... We’re kind of old school in that way.

Do you guys have any good studio stories?
I’m not the guy to ask. Um … we’ve definitely played in some pretty wild studios, especially for “OK to Go” But in the studio we’re just under water, and sort of there. You’re just in there for so long and you have no idea what time it is. I’m always like “Let’s go out. It’s too dark in here.” The studio for us is generally like me complaining that I’m in the Bat Cave. I want a studio in the Caribbean … I hate the studio, like the atmosphere. I hate basements. I hate caves. I hate low lighting. I hate candles. I need to see the sun as much as humanly possible.

What is your favorite part of being on tour?
That’s a good question. There’s a lot of it I like. I think one of my favorite things to do on the road is wake up before the rest of my band just to wake up to read the paper and relax and reflect on the day before. The part counter to that is … I don’t know. Sometimes you see people that you went to school with that moved to a new city. The not knowing. I mean I’m sitting here and I have no idea what will happen tonight. There is just so much routine in life, and not knowing what’s not going to happen is nice. You can just make music and be positive and make this little piece of the future that you can control when you’re on tour. It’s nice.

What is one question that you’ve never been asked that you’ve always wanted to be asked?
I don’t know. How about “How do you really not want to die?” “I don’t want to be eaten by sharks.” Let’s see … I would love to be asked, “So how was the flight on your private jet? How was the Japanese tour?” That would be awesome.

12/31 - Alexandria, VA
1/30 - New York, NY
2/5 - Philadelphia, PA
2/6 - Baltimore, MD

Photos by Emily Williams.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Sara Bareilles Give Fans a "Free Ride" for the Holidays

Merry Chrismakwanzika!

I bet you don't know what I'm doing. Yes, I'm writing a blog. But what am I doing while writing this blog?

Did you guess?

No. I am not working on college apps. Who are you? My mother?

I'll give you a hint.

Last night around 6:45, Sara Bareilles posted an update to her Twitter announcing that she would release a new live EP on her website today.

Can you guess what I'm doing now?

That's right. I'm listening to the new live EP by the one and only Sara Bareilles. You should be too. Go download it.

What's that? Your iPod is already exploding from too much music? Well delete some stuff. You've got to make some space for this.

This one-track, 31 minute delight is from the Chicago stop of last winter's Gravity Tour. Featuring new arrangements of tracks from her major label debut, Little Voice, this is Sara Bareilles as you've never heard her before.

Remember "Love Song" - the one with the insanely catchy piano riff and a Grammy nomination to its name? It's here. Bareilles barely touches the piano on this live recording. It also features "Come Round Soon," a track shamelessly left out of last fall's live DVD, Between the Lines: Live at the Fillmore.

She also debuts a new song on her internet EP, "Free Ride."

It's not a new record, but it will definitely tide eager fans over until its release.

Have I still not convinced you?

It's free.


Track Listing
1. Intro
2. Bottle It Up
3. Come Round Soon
4. Vegas
5. Free Ride
6. Love Song
7. I'm On Fire (featuring Tony Lucca) [Bruce Springsteen Cover]
8. Gravity

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

The Pulse hangs with Set Your Goals at the AP Fall Ball Tour

Hey, Alena here just popping in with another awesome interview! I got an awesome chance to hang with Mike (Drummer), Matt (Vocals), and Dan (Guitar) from the Bay Area pop-punk band Set Your Goals. Their performance at the Fall Ball Tour was INSANE and the guys from the band were really cool to hang with. Check out some of their latest tour stories and the story behind their latest album "This Will Be The Death Of Us" (Epitaph Records).

SET YOUR GOALS Pictures, Images and Photos

TP: So how is everyone doing?
All: Good
Mike: Pumped for the show
Matt: Word, I got my coffee in hand

TP: Did you guys dress up for Halloween?
Matt: Yes we were the Juggalos
Mike: of the Insane Clown Posse

TP: HAHA NICE! Did you guys do anything special? Any parties?
Matt: Haha we tried getting into clubs but had no luck getting in
Dan: But we ate loads of candy

TP: So how’s it been playing with all the other bands on the Fall Ball Tour?
Matt: It’s been good. We love all the guys on tour
Dan: There are a lot of different bands and it brings in a huge crowd. It’s like one big family
Mike: There is just so much energy and the crowds are insane

TP: Who’s the messiest of the 5 on tour
Mike: Joe
Matt: Joe
Dan: Yeah Joe
Matt: Yeah he’s definitely the messiest but we make him clean.

TP: Who has been the best band to tour with so far?
Dan: Fireworks. They are a lot of fun. They have been our friends for a long time.
Mikey: True, New Found Glory and Four Year Strong were awesome as well.
Matt: Yeah we love Fireworks. When we're with them we go insane.

TP: What has bee the best location to visit while on tour?
Matt: Boston definitely
Mike: Chicago
Dan: I think on this tour though, I think we all can agree that the Nashville show was pretty crazy. Sold out and the set was nuts

TP: Any specific bands do you dream of touring with?
Matt: Metallica, The Cure, you know the usual
Mike: Ditto, New Found Glory, and we’ve already gotten to do that!
Dan: Black Sabbath, The Police, there are just so many amazing bands out there we’d love to tour with.

TP: So SYG just released a new album? Any specific inspiration for the title? 
Matt: You know we all had been going through some hard times just at home and stuff. The title just came up and really reflected everything we were going through. If things kept going the way they were, than it would have been “The Death of Us”.  But things turned around and picked up when we switched labels to Epitaph (Dan: Whoot).
Mike: We spent so much time on the record and we are just really proud with the way it came out. Mike Green is the man.
Dan and Matt: WORD!

TP: What can fans expect when they see you play live
Matt: Nothing but a crazy show. Don’t come if you don’t want to go crazy. It’s just full of energy and enthusiasm.
Mike: And don’t forget to sing along
Dan: Definitely
TP: Alright bros thanks for hanging with us and good luck on tonight’s show.  
All: Peace man

Photos from their performance on the AP Tour at the 9:30 Club Washington, DC:

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

The Pulse's Christmas Wish List

These soon-to-be released and newly released albums are expected to make the BEST stocking stuffers (or Hanukkah gifts, or winter solstice gifts depending on your religion of choice) for you (of course) and your friends. Don't forget to hit up your local record store and pick one of these babies up:

For your parents:
Buffet Hotel - Jimmy Buffet

For the young adults:
Battle Studies - John Mayer
This Is War - 30 Seconds to Mars
Fall be Kind EP - Animal Collective
Butter - Hudson Mohawke

For the teeny-bopper:
Glee - The Music Vol 2 - Glee Cast
The Fame Monster - Lady Gaga
For Your Entertainment - Adam Lambert

Seasons Greetings and get ready for your black friday shopping!
Alena (THE Pulse)

Sunday, November 22, 2009

The Kin is going from Nowhere to Somewhere

If your are a fan of Dave Matthews, Howie Day, or The Fray, then be prepared for The Pulse's latest "mashup". The Kin brings back the soul pop music once had as their music grows from it's roots in the land of the Aussies. Australian Brothers, Isaac and Thorry Koren, have been touring the world with their infectious brand of alternative music; melodic with soaring vocals and insightful storytelling, the boys give audiences a true co-led duo experience. After a successful first record, 'Rise & Fall', and a live acoustic EP released back in '08, The Kin released their sophomore album, entitled "THE UPside" in October of 09. They are currently touring some of America's various halls, theaters, and even synagogues as the opening act for folk phenomenon Joshua Radin. For more information check them out at or 

Bur for now, check out their song Animals

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Album Review - Sherwood

I had the pleasure to see Sherwood play at the Fillmore in Detroit with Steel Train, Hellogoodbye, and Hanson. I was impressed by the band’s performing chops and by keyboardist/percussionist Mike Leibovich’s amusing dance moves, including throwing a tambourine up towards the lights.

Despite my positive impression of the band, I had to admit I was skeptical about the timing of their new album. Sometimes bands try to come back to quickly after achieving success, afraid that their fans will leave them for some other new band. However, Sherwood’s new album Qu meets expectations, despite that it only took the Californians two years to write, record, and release.

Qu is happy, cheerful pop music, complete with “woah” choruses and easy going guitar riffs. Don’t get the wrong idea about Sherwood though. They are not (I repeat NOT) just another overproduced alternative pop band. Every single song on this album has enough real instrumentation that you could sing them around a campfire with just an acoustic guitar ß Props go to producer Brad Wood on that one.

Their 2007 effort A Different Light peaked at #30 on the U.S. Top Independent Albums. With all the good press these boys are getting from critics at StereoSubversion (8/10 stars) and the Alternative Press (4/5 stars), I would be surprised if Qu doesn’t do even better



Official Site





11/3 – Denver, CO – Ogden Theatre

11/5 – San Francisco, CA – The Regency Ballroom

11/7 – Los Angeles, CA – Club Nokia

11/8 – San Diego, CA – House of Blues

11/10 – Tucson, AZ – The Rialto Theatre

11/11 – Anaheim, CA – House of Blues

11/12 – Santa Barbara, CA – The Hub at UCSB

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Featured Artist: Scouting for Girls

Well, since The Pulse has gone British, I think now would be a wonderful time to introduce a recent "outta the UK" favorite of mine: Scouting For Girls
SFG is a London-based indie pop band comprised of Roy Stride (vocals/keyboards), Greg Churchouse (bass guitar), and Peter Ellard (percussion). This phenomenal three piece manages to maintain the ability to write a song that is, quite frankly, catchy as hell, but don't come off as too mainstream or poppy. Their songs range in subject matter from crushes and love to... spies? Yes, ladies and gentlemen, spies. The song "I Wish I was James Bond," easily the most recognized track thanks to YouTube, states the speaker's wistful desires to "kiss all the girls and blow the bad guys away," much in the fashion of his idol, James Bond himself.
SFG takes a different approach to alternative musicianship as well. Instead of opting for the typical guitar-bass-drums style of many indie bands, SFG takes advantage of the versatility of the piano instead of the "standard" guitar. Some might find themselves initially skeptical on this front, but I assure you it actually produces a refreshing sound. I mean, I'm saying this, and as a guitarist, I'm automatically biased, and I'm saying good things about it. Come on now.
Despite the UK's adoration for SFG, I've noticed that the only real US recognition they've received is one of their songs in a Vonage commercial. Unfortunately, unless something's changed, the album is not available in the US iTunes store, but they have an EP available on their official website for free download so I recommend you check them out.

Official Website

Scouting For Girls - I Wish I Was James bond

Scouting for Girls|MySpace Music Videos

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Bringin Back the Brits and the Brooks

He might be the next Jason Mraz or Gavin DeGraw but with a British accent. Not this isn't the Joe Brooks from LA. This singer/songwriter and Southampton native of the South UK will be a girl's next heartthrob. Brooks writes all of his own music in his tiny apartment and travels around the Southampton area playing gigs in small local clubs. In his personal blog, he explains how important connecting with his fans is and how much he appreciates their own creative personalities as well. Aside from writing music, Brooks loves to immerse himself in traveling, superheroes/alteregoes, vintage clothing, graphic design, and like any good Brit, TEA!

Now without further adieu, here is Joe Brooks ad his hit song Holes Inside! ♥ Alena

Sunday, September 27, 2009

I PROMISE my next post will be shorter...

So I've recently made a MySpace page. For bands and stuff.
In the few weeks I've had it, I've had indie bands add me, some exceptional, some much less so. I posted a blog asking if a band would like to be featured in The Pulse, to please contact me.
About a day later, I received a message from a band, known as Deathalizer, asking to be featured.
I always go into MySpace band sites with a high amount of skepticism. Usually they're either teenage bands that only have about a month's worth of experience working together and a GarageBand recording of themselves doing Smells Like Teen Spirit, or a label run page that has no personal affiliation with the band. But naturally I give it a shot. I've got nothing but time, and hell, it might be worth it.
Now would I be sitting here writing about it if it wasn't? Didn't think so.
Deathalizer is a four-piece unsigned metal band from New York. Adopting their unmistakably thrash style from the likes of Metallica, Slayer, and Pantera, they blend the best of what these bands showcase to create great, in-your-face metal.
Starting with The Angel's Fall, the first track from Deathalizer's album, It Dwells Within, kicks off with slow dark sounding acoustic guitars, breaking into similarly paced harmonized riffs, leading, finally, into the Metallica-esque "theme" of the song, in a sense.
This Metallica influence in a prominent factor throughout the album. And as a huge Metallica fan, myself, I found Deathalizer to have released less of an album, and more of what some people might find a breath of fresh air where the St. Anger and, for some, Death Magnetic era of 'tallica just didn't make the cut (I personally thought DM was great, but to each his own).
That's not all we see however. The taste of Slayer one hears in both the intro riffs of Suicide Lane and the entirety of Crawling Back In is incredible. A shadow of Pantera takes over in Crumbs From the Sky, and by the fifth track, More than Gone, the band is ready to slow it down a bit. Not entirely, however. Starting with some slower bass and some simple chugging riffage, the thrash returns just before the again, slower, vocally focused verse. Which I might add, you haven't been hearing James Hetfield. Although not an exact sound, the vocal style is unmistakable.
The final song and title track of It Dwells Within marks the final return of the Pantera influence, both instrumentally and vocally. Even now, though, there's a little bit of Kill 'em All in there, closing the album.
One thing I loved about listening to Deathalizer is that they're not a band that's afraid of a guitar solo. They have talent, and they're not afraid to use it, and IT PAYS OFF. They've created a solid, powerful release that I would recommend to any modern thrash fan. And being the kind of unknown band that they are, they get personal with the fans, both potential and current. "We are mainly fans of thrash metal. We compose and play the music that we would want to hear ourselves as fans. We like to have fun on stage and raise the spirits of the audience. If you are into that, come join us on this ride. " says guitarist Antonio Calaf. Listen to the man.

It Dwells Within was (and still is, at least at the time of this writing) available on their official website in mp3 format for no charge at 128k. Although $5 (or more, it's a name your price kind of thing) for the higher quality version wouldn't be a mistake.

Check 'em out:
Official Website

All I got for ya today. Enjoy.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Got Swagg, Got Tinchy Stryder

         BOY OH BOY do I have a surprise for you. For fans of Kanye West, Black Milk, and Kid Cudi, but who are looking for a bit of a twist, Tinchy Stryder is for you. This Ghanian grime singer and that now resides in Bow, East London is the new face of Synth-Hip Hop. Yes the name might sound a bit weird but I assure you his music is going to get you on the dance floor. He takes the melodic lines from Flo-Rida, the eclectic style from Kanye, and the synth lines from Justice and Daft Punk, and mashes them together.

          The debut album by Tinchy Styder "Star in the Hood" was released in August of 2007 on Takeover Entertainment. The album spawned two main singles, "Breakaway" and "Something About Your Smile". He then released his follow up album "Catch 22" in August of 2009 and it is now at No. 2 on the UK Carts (Right behind Calvin Harris's new album). He is currently playing sold out shows across the UK and is become the biggest hit around british college campuses.


Roll Out,

Check out his hit single Take Me Back ft. Taio Cruz

Sunday, September 13, 2009

"Circles will not fill a square, don't fit together, but I don't care"

I found a $50 iTunes gift card in my desk. This resulted  in a music binge that could only be topped by Christmas 2008, when I got a $100 gift card and bought the 100 greatest songs of the 90s according to Vh1. Regardless, I bought some new stuff. Here are 3 new albums by 3 new bands you are buying today.

Aim and Ignite – Fun.
Must buys:        “All The Pretty Girls”
                        “Walking the Dog”
                        “I Wanna Be The One”
Fun. is a band made up of 3 people from 3 other bands: Jack Antonoff of Steel Train, Nate Ruess of The Format, and Andrew Dost of Paper and Plastick. Their debut album came out August 29, and it lives up to the band name. Aim and Ignite is good, fun music. “All the Pretty Girls” is reminiscent of Queen. “Be Calm” has a horn section that makes you think of the Queen of England. And the entire album makes you think of dancing. Aim and Ignite is what music should be: a party in a stereo.
Flawz – Caitlin Crosby
Must buys:        “Still Have My Heart”
                        “Don’t Play Me Hollow”
                        “Love Love Love”
If you don’t have $9.99 on your iTunes account, I’ll forgive you. However, it is nonnegotiable that you spare $.99 for her single, “Still Have My Heart.” Caitlin Crosby’s music is a little kooky, but pretty fun. Her voice is somewhere in between Katy Perry and Charlotte Sometimes, but poppy piano parts and clean guitars fill out her music. Type in her name on YouTube to see some pretty fun covers that she performs during her residency at the Hotel Cafe in LA (including an acoustic cover of “Baby Got Back”).
Welcome to the Walk Alone – The Rumble Strips
Must buys:        “Welcome to the Walk Alone”
                        “Not the Only Person”
Mark Ronson produced it. Do I need to say more?
I do? Really? Fine.
Killers strings and killer horns. I haven’t heard a more seamless mix involving an acoustic piano and a full rock band in a really long time. This album sounds like everything you’ve heard and nothing you’ve heard before. This album reminds me of everyone from Kaiser Chiefs to Herman’s Hermits to early No Doubt to … well, you get the picture. There is nothing I can really say to make you go buy this one that will do it justice. So get off this page and get on iTunes!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Straight from Charm City, this week's featured band...

Anyone that knows me knows I'm a huge concert-goer. I really enjoy live music, preferably good live music.
So, a couple Januaries ago, a friend told me about a concert, four bands, five bucks, and the closer was Egypt Central. Not a hugely known band, but I'd always really enjoyed their music. And hell yes, I can afford that.
So, day of the show rolls around. We go, it's at the Ottobar in Baltimore. Now, I had never been there before that time, but I wasn't surprised to find that it's basically a stage, a bar, and a thick layer of haze.
We got there early, because... well... that's what we do. Get there early, almost guaranteed a place against the stage. Not like it was really difficult, because the crowd wasn't huge.
First band was a local band called... hell... I don't remember their name. They were alright for what they did, but I wasn't really feelin' it at the time. Next band was Lennex, another local band. Highly entertaining. Good music. Third band was a Baltimore based band, Forty Acres. This was actually my favorite of the night. Egypt Central was good, but Forty Acres really stood out to me. Maybe it's because I'm a huge fan of the "throwback" style of rock: something reminiscent of the 70's or 80's. But they put on a damn good show. High energy, kept the crowd moving, including that drunk chick behind me, shakily holding her drink above my head, only to let it fall, dousing me with whatever alcohol she may have been consuming.
But that's neither here nor there. After the show, I felt compelled to buy the album they had on sale: Broken Promise, a self-produced album. A purchase I was glad I made, worth way more then the... $10? $5? Something.
All I know now is that I have kept up with this band since I saw them. And it's amazing to see how far they've made it.
They started out in vocalist/guitarist John Allen's basement. He already had a lot of useful experience in both songwriting and touring before, as the drummer for SR-71, a Baltimore local alternative rock band. This time around, however, Mr. Allen stepped up to the mic, and anyone like me, who's a fan of the band is glad he did. His voice is perfectly suited for the old-school rock'n'roll sound that they produce, and the instrumental aspect is equally well suited.
They played shows around the Baltimore area for a while, until they were "discovered." Discovered, I say, by Mr. Nikki Sixx himself, bassist for Motley Crue and president of Eleven/Seven Records.
After several name changes, going from Forty Acres to Chosen Son, and then from Chosen Son to what we now know as Charm City Devils, a tribute to the city they have emerged from, they were signed to Eleven Seven, among big names like Crue themselves, Drowning Pool, and Buckcherry.
Now what is it about Charm City Devils that make them unique?
Maybe it's the fact that unlike many so-called rock bands of today, they truly represent the whole, no holds barred, dangerous, raw sound of what rock once was. No frills, nothing too complex, just pure sex, drugs, and rock'n'roll.
Charm City Devils released their breakout Eleven Seven debut, Let's Rock-n-Roll, earlier this year. A fun release, preferred when played loudly, it still features that raw sound that was loved about Broken Promise.
They have just ended their run opening for Cruefest 2, and are now on the second leg of their tour, so if you get the chance, go see them.
So, if you like bands like Buckcherry or Jet, or simply like the idea of a band reviving the old school rock sound, I recommend you check out Charm City Devils.
Key Tracks -- Let's Rock-N-Roll (Endless Road), House Fire, Pour Me (IT HAS COWBELL XD)



That's all from me, today. Enjoy.
~Sara (@skapocalypsenow)

Friday, September 4, 2009

Come September, Come New Album Releases (and Reviews)

I have been fortunate enough to inherit some of the newest albums before they have been released and would like to give you readers just a bit of insight  (There are a lot of albums so I have to be brief about some of them):
September 8 
  • A Fine Frenzy - A Bomb In A Birdcage
  • Rodrigo y Gabriela - 11:11 (BUY THIS. I haven't heard it but I can only predict perfection from this dynamic classical guitar duo
  • Boys Like Girls - Love Drunk (3 Stars out of 5): WATCH OUT BLG FANS. This is ABSOLUTELY NOTHING like their debut album/self-titled release. They have joined the mass of power pop bands like All Time Low and Jet Lag Gemini (god I hate that offense to the band or anything) and have conformed to the synth filled sounds of major labels. I particularly do not like the album, and I particularly would not recommend it to most people. Give yourself a few days and you shall hear it for yourself.
  • Saosin - In Search of Solid Ground (4.5 Stars out of 5): They have done it again! Following their self-titled debut album (released in 2006), Saosin has brought us another gem in their jewelry box. They have gone back to their roots of The Grey EP. Cove’s vocals have never sounded so clean and beautiful, the guitar work is just as invigorating as before, and Alex Rodriguez’s drumming remains spot on with his signature fills.  This is sure to be an ear pleaser.
  • Advent - Naked and Cold

September 15
  • Everytime I Die - New Junk Aesthetic

September 22
  • Slayer - World Painted Blood
  • Brand New - Daisy
  • Five Finger Death Punch - War Is The Answer (2.5 out of 5): I am highly disappointed in the album. Moody's vocal are just not up to par and the guitar riffs feel like they repeat within the album multiple times. The album marks the record debut of new guitarist Jason Hook, pulled from the Alice Cooper after original guitarist Darrell Roberts split in January of this year. Hook's playing is decent (I mean the guy has played for Hillary Duff....I don't judge but you know). I have a hard time judging this album for a general audience, so I recommend listening to it yourself if you want a good idea.
  • MIKA - The Boy Who Knew Too Much
September 29
  • Paramore - Brand New Eyes: Listen to their single "Ignorance" and you will feel the same insane intensity that I can predict this album will bring. DO NOT MISS THIS
Peace Out

Monday, August 31, 2009

Featured Band: Upstanding Youth

Warm sun. Beautiful beaches. Volcanoes. That obnoxious guy in the brightly colored floral tee, a rainbow-colored lei, a straw "nest" hat on his head, and the biggest camera that they make for public use strapped around his neck.
But when it comes to Hawaii's music, what comes to mind?
Ukelele around the campfire, anyone?
Not anymore.
I'd like to introduce to you one of my favorite accidental music discoveries: Upstanding Youth.
Upstanding Youth is a six-piece ska-punk (with a touch of reggae) band from O'ahu, Hawaii. Six very different people, pursuing very different goals in each of their respective lives. One goal that unifies them, however, is to share their music. Whether it's used as an outlet, a universal language, or is just simply everything, these guys came together, began performing locally in Hawaii in 2001 and have been playing together as a band ever since.
And with prominent influences such as Reel Big Fish, Less Than Jake, NOFX, The Mighty Mighty BossTones, Bob Marley, and Sublime, among others, where can they go wrong? Apparently they can't, because each of their four albums have won Best Ska/Punk Album in each of their respective years at the Hawaiian Music Awards, which are said to be the Grammys of Hawaii.
Seems like what they've been doing is working. And their newest award winner, A Sense of Urgency, is no exception whatsoever. An somewhat edgier release, in the rock sense, than earlier albums Trying to Stand, Kam Highway Catharsis, and Still, the album totally delivers. This new edge can be seen in tracks throughout an album, from Bigger than You and Me, Flying V, which, I might add, displays the band's flawless ability to build up a song. Songs like Detonate, a tune questioning the eventual fate of the band, Empty Pockets, and Electric Fence, my personal favorite of the album, reinstates the band's identity as a SKA band, but it's not as if anyone was questioning it. It still continues to be the most prominent aspect of the album.
Key tracks to check out from other albums include -- Fatalist, Desperation, and Conflict Resolution (from Still); Paint By Numbers, Jimmy (from Kam Highway Catharsis)

Want to check them out?
Official Website


That's all from me, more to come later.
Keep rockin',
Sara (follow@skapocalypsenow)

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Where the Wild Things Are

Well in the music business these past few days, it's been a zoo (much like my local school system here). I thought I would break it down into a few notes just to highlight the important, odd, and "other".
Pearl Jam (who recently released a music video for their single "Fixer") had their song "Supersonic" leaked off their upcoming release Backspace (due Sept 20th). Fall Out Boy's Patrick Stump landed in the the dog house for driving without a license. The Used will be releasing their album "Artwork" September 1st featuring their single "Blood On My Hands" so be sure to check it out. Last of all we say R.I.P to famed DJ AM and The Pulse will be keeping him in our prayers. Alright that's all for now. Peace Out

The Pulse

Sunday, August 23, 2009

New Writers, New Sections, New Music!

Big things are happening here at The Pulse. I am proud to announce that there is no 'I' in Pulse (even though there never was), and we have officially signed on a new co writer and contributing writer. Please welcome Emily Williams, a pianist, music guru, and audio engineer from Bloomfield Hills, Michigan who will be the new co-writer of The Pulse. She loves pineapple pizza and playing lacrosse as well. We also welcome Sara Cooper; a Guitarist, audio engineer, and a music fanatic as well from my hometown P.G Maryland. She will be a contributing writer (and a local music scout) so look out for a spoonful of her taste in music as well. From this point on we will specify who writes what articles so take a look and see who's music choices of the week you're digging. So as we start the 2009-2010 school year, we're gonna give you a peek at what's to come from The Pulse:

1) New Writers
  • Alena Moran (Creator, Co-Writer): Oboist from PG, Maryland. Listens to: Plushgun, Evanescence, U2, Paramore, Passenger, Blink 182, The Who, Keith Urban
  • Emily Williams (Co-Writer): Pianist from Bloomfield Hills, Michigan. Listens to: Ben Folds, The Fray, Yo La Tengo, Jason Mraz, Kate Nash, Aerosmith
  • Sara Cooper (Contributing Writer): Guitarist from PG, Maryland. Listens to: NOFX, Iron Maiden, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Alice in Chains, Stone Sour, Collective Soul
2) New Sections: Not only will we be featuring local and non-local underground/indie artists, we will also be filling you in on new album releases, upcoming tours, and various other music news. Also if you want to know more about a band, we will be taking inquiries at The Pulse's new email:

3) New Twitter: Follow us at

and of course NEW MUSIC.

Rock Out.
The Pulse

Thursday, August 20, 2009

From Album Leaks to Hermaphrodite Scandals

          So as the summer approaches the end, I just wanted to reflect on all the music buzz over the summer; and talk about the good and the bad. It's not the normal "artist review" but I figured it would help get out some information about a few bands. internet

Well if you didn't know, back on August 11th Thrice released a digital copy of their new album Beggars after it was leaked all over the 3 months early (On July 21st). The original release date was October 13th, but after a change in artwork and removing the Vigrant Records watermarks off of it they released the album. The Dance Party released their new EP Tigers, which can be purchased on Itunes. It features their infamous single Sasha Don't Sleep and Tigers. Another Pulse favorite, Static Brigade (not featured on the blog, but loved none the less) released their self-titled EP in July as well. Check it out on Itunes as well. 

       Our lovely Lady Gaga is suspected to be a hermaphrodite, but she confirmed that her love for females is only physical. Singer Katy Perry remarked on the whole scandal, "Bless her if she has a dick" but assures ABC reporters that she does not believe Gaga does have one. Pop Rock bands Cobra Starship and All Time Low both released new albums as well. The only remark I will make is this, please producers do not auto-tune every sound and over mix good music. I will let you make the real judgement though about their new albums Hot Mess and Nothing Personal. Last of all, post-hardcore phenomenons Enter Shikari released their new album Common Dreads. Two words to describe the album, PURE AWESOMNESS! 

The Pulse is taking a new direction as well. We (or more or less myself) are looking to expand and need a new writer. Email or message me on Facebook if you are interested in joining the club. I am looking specifically for another person in the DC/MD/VA area with an exceptionally good taste in music, but if you do not live in the area never fear; anyone is welcome to join us in our music-spreading wonders and be a writer as well. Let me know if you want to join the family :)

Rock out, and Relax
The Pulse

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

From 12 St. Manhattan, The Pulse brings you 4 Shadow Productions feat. Rhyme Progression

           So after vacationing for the longest time, The Pulse is back and we’re changing it up a bit. Out with the rock/pop/electronica/indie and in with some good old underground hip hop and rap. Fans of hip-hop artists such as Asher Roth, Fort Minor, Lupe Fiasco, and Wu Tang Clan must add this to their collection. 

The Pulse presents 4Shadow Productions

         Life IS a struggle when you have less than two weeks to record a 5 track hip-hop EP in just a college dorm room and a little one-room studio, but for the men of 4Shadow Productions they made do with just that. Rising from the Steinhardt Studios and 12 St. Manhattan, artist Rhyme Progression released his 12 St. EP July 18th in collaboration with JHY ENT 6one5 Productions, and Brendan AKA Crates.=

             The first track off the EP “Blind World” actually features a sample from a 10 cent 45 rpm found in the thrift store across the street from their dorm. Initially the group threw it aside, but “when Andrew Seltzer (a friend and bass/vocalist for the band Sleeping Lessons) walked in the room, pushed us aside and dropped the needle in the perfect place, adjusted the tone and pitch just right, and it was pure gold” says Crates. The first single released from the EP is “Life’s A Struggle”. It features the vocal talents of both Crates and Progression, and is a unique mix of harmonious vocals, piano, strings, and traditional hip hop beats into a sure to be hit.

           Though the group is spread across the country, they plan to collaborate again to release more of their music together. In the mean time though, you can visit each of their individual Myspaces to check out their individual projects. Now for what everyone likes, freebies. 4 Shadow Productions has made the 12 St. EP available free for download, exclusively to The Pulse readers. The catch is the album free for a limited time, so get your copy before it’s too late. You can get the album here:
but the link will be removed in about a week so get your copy now for free! 

Keep it cool, keep it rocking,
The Pulse

The group is:

Rhyme Progression – Rapper from Greely, Colorado

J.H.Y Ent (JHY Beats) – Producer from North Jersey, New Jersey

DJ Hyflo (6one5 Productions) – DJ and producer from Nashville, Tennessee

Brendan AKA Crates – Producer from Placerville, California

Sunday, July 19, 2009

We're Gonna Teach You A Few Sleeping Lessons

*Raise your hand if you know where Old Saybrook, Connecticut is.
*Keep your hand raised if you have heard the band Sleeping Lessons.

Well if your hand is down, have no fear. The Pulse has brought the Sleeping Lessons from Old Saybrook, Conneticut here. These 4 boys have melted together pop, rock, dance, alternative, funk and hip hop music, and sprinkled some good lucks and adorable smiles on top to give you a treat for your ears. Beginning in the winter of 2009, the band began experimenting to find new sounds and then began booking small shows. They just released their first EP The Art of Growing Up and it is marvelous!

The 3 original band members Brandon Clark (Lead Vocals, Piano), Mike Izadi (Guitar), and Preston Briggs (Drums) were long time friends, but agreed that finding the right bassist would fill and solidify the band's sound. *cue entrance for Andrew Seltzer* Andrew Seltzer (Bass), a mutual friend of the band, joined the Sleeping Lessons, bringing his diverse sound as well production abilities. Andrew happens to be friend of mine who I have personally worked with on musical projects. When he introduced me to his band's music I knew that they would have a short shot to success.

You can check the sleeping lessons out at or at OR even on twitter at

Their EP will be available for purchase in the coming week, but if you are really inclined to listen to it you can email me at and get it for FREE! But hurry, the offer ends soon :)

Sunday, June 28, 2009

The Pulse is back with THE GRENADE

(please note the failed attempt at creating a pun)

So I've taken a break to catch up on some summer rays and to refresh The Pulse's summer playlists, but today I thought I would bring you a little taste of what I call electronica bliss. The first time I saw Philippe Grenade-WIllis was at a show at Sonar in Baltimore. My best friend and I walked in and saw this crazy white guy running around in a purple I <3 NY t-shirt. Immediately, I wondered what I had gotten myself into. However, I quickly got into the groove and discovered that The Grenade was BUCK (aka awesomely crazy for those non Urban Dictionary savvy people).

This Brooklyn and Washington D.C. resident and member of the band The Drugstore Cowboys started his first solo project under the name The Grenade a few years back. If you are a fan of artists like Dan Deacon, DJ Tiesto, and Cut Copy, then you will definitely dig the "Night Terror" that The Grenade creates. His beats have been described by artists and fans as "screaming out of your Sega Genesis console" and "crashing your dad's 80's Porsche into your living room to stumble in and trip".  The Grenade released his first EP Dinobots which is now available for download FREE on his Myspace . Last of all, don't forget to check out his live set at the Jammin Java in Vienna, Virginia on July 10th with Static Brigade, Young Enough, PJ The Viking, DJ Long Jawns, and more. Check out more from The Grenade at

Peace Out. Keep It Ultra Radical. 
-The Pulse

Sunday, May 31, 2009

When Gotham Falls, A Hero Will Rise

It is true. Baltimore heavy rock band When Gotham Falls released their debut album Volume I: A Hero Will Rise this past September. The band rocks out to melodic piano lines and heavy guitar riffs. The band's song selection reaches new heights within this album. The album features a piano ballad “Caroline”, the emotional "Give Up The Ghost", and the so called radio favorite “Rewind”. It is the band's first step towards taking over Baltimore's rock scene. My personal favorite is California because of it's contrasting riffs and it's dark ad heavy guitar riffs. If you are fans of Atreyu, 30 Seconds to Mars, and bands alike, I know you'll want to add When Gotham Falls to your next playlist.

When Gotham Falls Is:
Josh (Vocals/Guitar)
Christian (Backup Vocals/Guitar)
Matt (Drums)
Mike (Bass)

Check them out at:

Keep it cool, keep it rocking
-The Pulse

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

PopRockSkaHipHop. They call themselves The Echo Boom

A wise man once said that we are shaped by the people who surround us. Who wouldn't agree that this applies to music. So what would you expect from a band whose lead vocalist is a rapper influenced as much by the Beatles, Bob Dylan and Kanye West, and the band's singer/guitar player was influenced by Jimi Hendrix and Led Zeppelin? The Echo Boom brings it all together - mixing mainstream sounds with old school jazz rock guitar, modern beats, girly acoustic guitar licks, brass melodies and so much more. The Echo Boom is from Takoma Park, Maryland (PG REPRESENT). Their album No Morning In Mind is now available on Itunes for download.

The Echo Boom's music is perfectly fit for that cool night on the town filled with good food, good friends, good dancing, and GREAT drinks. So as your driving through Baltimore, Washington DC, Annapolis, or just down Greenbelt Road, remember to bring their album as you cruise through the night.

The Echo Boom is:
en Martinez—Guitar, Vocals
Andrew Morisey—Vocals, Guitar
Ryan Martinez—Bass, Vocals
Will Whitney—Drums

Check them out on:


*I would like to than Eric Bowers for introducing me to The Echo Boom. I greatly appreciate it.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

The time has come for Generation Plushgun

I have probably contemplated writing this article at least a thousand times. Many moons ago I took a trip to New York University. During my official campus tour, I asked the tour guide (whose name I cannot remember) what his favorite band was that came from NYU. He said it was Plushgun. Following the tour, I immediately rushed to my laptop and hit up there myspace. I was surrounded by these sounds that were in explainable. As I began to listen to the first track 14 Candles I fell into a trance as their sound flowed and filled the room. Their music is an infectious sound of electronic beats and pop synths, like the perfect new wave indie rock dance lullaby. Plushgun released their first major EP in August of 2008 featuring their hit single "Just Impolite". The music video for the song even featured the popular Hairspray star Brittany Snow. They have released their first full length album this past February called Pins and Panzers, which can be ordered online, purchased at some record stores, or downloaded from Itunes.

Plushgun was founded by Dan Ingala of Brooklyn, New York. The current lineup of the band is Ingala on lead vocals and synths, Taylor Armstrong on guitar and Matt Bogdanow on drums. The band gained a large online audience when their music was featured in episodes of the web series We Need Girlfriends. They were featured in October of 2008 on NPR (click here for the article ). They have also been featured on Nylon magazine's website, MTV's The City, and MTV's The Real World: Brooklyn. Lucky for me, I've even made it into Plushgun's Myspace top friends!

Plushgun is on their first national tour this year so make sure you don't miss out on a chance to see this sensation live. Check them out on their Myspace at, and don't forget to buy their album. As for my relationship with the band, I'm not obsessed, JUST IMPOLITE!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

The Pulse Reccomends: Give It All You've Got Festival

BAND EXTRAVAGANZA (and The Pulse will be there too!)

Bands Playing:

Mercy Mercedes
Dropout Year
Go Crash Audio
From Coast to Skyline
Holiday Parade
The Scenic
Sent By Ravens
Love & Reverie
Patent Pending
The Hint
The Cardboard Cutouts
Crash Boom Band
Go Radio
Matthew McGinn



May, 30 2009 11:00 AM (ends at 10:30 p.m.)
Warrenton Community Center
430 East Shirley Ave., Warrenton, Virginia 20186 - $10 (adv) $12 (door)
Sponsored by, Applicant Apparel, Infinite, and

Concert Calendar 5/10 to 5/17

5/10/09: Mice Parade/Tom Brosseau/Gregory and The Hawk @ Rock 'N Roll Hotel
5/10/09: Animal Collective/Grouper @ Ottobar
5/11/09: Animal Collective/Grouper @ 9:30 Club
5/11/09: Leonard Cohen @ Merriweather
5/11/09: Wye Oak/Pomegranates @ Black Cat
5/11/09: Club Scout/Winter Gloves/A Born Idler @ DC9
5/12/09: The Features/Dexateens/Those Darlins @ Rock 'N Roll Hotel
5/13/09: The B-52s/The 88 @ Rams Head Live
5/13/09: The Thermals/The Shaky Hands/Point Juncture WA @ Black Cat
5/13/09: Rodriguez/The War on Drugs/Donny Hue and The Colors @ Rock 'N Roll Hotel
5/13/09: Impossible Hair/The Great Nostalgic @ Metro Gallery
5/13/09: Azita @ DC9
5/13/09: Eli "Paperboy" Reed @ Jammin' Java
5/14/09: The Shins/Delta Spirit @ 9:30 Club
5/14/09: Joe Pug/Horse Feathers @ Black Cat
5/14/09: We Were Pirates/The April Skies/Crimes of Paris @ Solly's
5/15/09: The Dig @ The Windup Space
5/15/09: Parachute Musical/Hammer No More The Fingers/Pico Vs Island Tree @ Rock 'N Roll Hotel
5/15/09: The Shins/Delta Spirit @ Rams Head Live
5/16/09: Von Iva/Semi Precious Weapons @ The Red and The Black
5/16/09: Big In Japan/We Read Minds/To The Moon @ Fletchers
5/16/09: Atmosphere @ 9:30 Club
5/16/09: Impossible Hair/The Great Nostalgic @ Velvet Lounge
5/16/09: Middle Distance Runner/Pretty & Nice/Loose Lips/Drink Up Buttercup @ Rock 'N Roll Hotel
5/16/09: Scott Miller/Paleface @ IOTA
5/16/09: J-Roddy Walston & The Business @ DC9
5/17/09: Dan Deacon/Future Islands/Teeth Mountain @ 9:30 Club
5/17/09: English Beat @ Rams Head Tavern
5/17/09: The Ting Tings @ Sonar

Sunday, April 19, 2009

The Pulse's very own DC/MD/VA Concert Calendar

So here at The Pulse, we like to be trend setters. So we have decided to present our very own concert calendar. We will be listing the local shows in the DC/MD/Va area so YOU can check some hot bands out. We will post the upcoming concerts for every two weeks so you know when the hottest shows are coming your way. Since there are so many shows that come around the area, we have picked the MUST SEE shows. Be sure to check out each venue's site to get an updated list filled with ticket info, times, etc.

Concerts from 4/20 - 5/3

4/20/09: Acid Mothers Temple/Sonic Suicide Squad @ Ottobar
4/23/09: Travis/The Republic Tigers @ 9:30 Club
4/23/09: Jeremy Jay/The Art Department/Snowmen @ Talking Head
4/23/09: Modern Skirts @ Black Cat
4/23/09: Jeremy Jay @ Sonar
4/24/09: Kings of Leon/The Walkmen @ Patriot Center
4/24/09: My Favorite Highway @ Sonar
4/24/09: Streeligh Manifesto @ The Recher
4/24/09: Copeland/This Providence/Paper Route/Brooke Waggoner @ Rock 'N Roll Hotel
4/24/09: Action Painters @ Metro Gallery
4/24/09: Spectrum/Pontiak @ Sonar
4/25/09: Bowerbirds/Bell/Birdlips @ Rock 'N Roll Hotel
4/25/09: Simian Mobile Disco @ Sonar
4/25/09: Manchester Orchestra/Fun/The Audrye Sessions/Winston Audio @ Ottobar
4/26/09: The Water/Screen Vinyl Image/Ceremony @ Metro Gallery
4/26/09: Julie Doiron @ DC9
4/26/09: Oppenheimer/The Presidents of The United States of America @ 9:30 Club
4/28/09: Chain and The Gang/Hive Dwellers/Mahjongg @ Talking Head
4/28/09: Katie Stelmanis @ The Red and The Black
4/28/09: Paleo/Fearsome Creatures/Old Thunder Heart @ Golden West Cafe
4/28/09: Hoots and Hellmouth @ Rams Head Tavern
4/28/09: We The Kings, FTSK, The Cab @ The Recher
4/29/09: Electric Six/Living Things @ Black Cat
4/30/09: The Kills/The Horrors/Magic Wands @ 9:30 Club

5/01/09: Freeland/Alex Metric @ Rock 'N Roll Hotel
5/01/09: Sum 41 @ Sonar
5/01/09: Death By Sexy/The Whore Moans @ The Red and The Black
5/01/09: The Shackeltons/FFHH/Caestles/Fourth Grade Security Risk @ Sidebar
5/02/09: Peter Bjorn and John/Chairlift @ 9:30 Club
5/02/09: Silverstein w/ Norma Jean, Blessthefall @ Rams Head Live
5/02/09: Dinosaur Jr/Mike Watt @ Ottobar
5/02/09: Noah and The Whale/Ferraby Lionheart/Anni Rossi @ Black Cat
5/02/09: Crack The Sky @ The Recher
5/03/09: Cursive/Man Man @ Black Cat
5/03/09: The Lovetones/The Laughing Man/Embarrasing Fruits @ Velvet Lounge

A wave of new music, that's Storm The Beaches

Arising from two Baltimore area bands, Storm the Beaches is electrifying venues throughout eastern Maryland. Mark Mikina, formerly of The Autumn Sun, sings, writes and plays guitar and the rhythm section is comprised of bassist Danny Reedy, also from The Autumn Sun, and drummer Josh Yeager from Chasing Honesty. With the addition of Mark's long-time friend Wills Mayo, a bluegrass aficionado, the band began rehearsing and, soon after, recording their unique brand of music. These guys are no doubt one of Baltimore's premier musical acts. Storm The Beaches' sound is as full and rich as any world-touring band. Mark's vocals are undoubtedly strong, as well as the band's overall sound. Check them out on their Myspace by clicking on the banner below.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

They aren't your normal family, they're The Baker Family

All in the Family

During a visit to Asheville, North Carolina, I met up with music producer David Barret, who also happened to be the drummer of The Baker Family Band. During a long chat at the recording studio in University of North Carolina Asheville, Barret described the band as a "a creative, original, listenable, and danceable indie rock band". He gave me a preview of their EP that was just released this past thursday (April 9th) at the Grey Eagle* and it introduced my ears to a new sound. The best way to describe the The Baker Family (TBF) would be a folk rock band full of excitement, loneliness, judgment, and hope. Their songs range from folky country to unconventional indie rock. The Bakers have performed all around Asheville, North Carolina, Atlanta, and NYC. Now, check them out at and at where you can even download some of their songs for FREE!

Watch the music video for their single "Bakers Can't Be Choosers"

*A small club in the town of Asheville

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Someone Call The Cops, These Guys Are ON FIRE!

A few months ago, a friend of mine reccomended me to listen to this power pop/alternative/electronic band called, Call the Cops. They had not released their debut EP yet so I asked my friend for a copy of the songs she had and I thought I'd give it a listen. When I put the cd into my car stereo, I IMMEDIATELY started moving to the beat. I put my sunglasses on, rolled the windows down, and cranked the volume to their song "Motion Sickness". I couldn't believe it! These guys were the new Metro Station (but better). I expected them to be just another "scene" band. but Call the Cops brought way more to the table. Their catchy songs like "Get Close" and "Love Like Novicaine" will get you off your feet and onto the dance floor. I've already claimed the "I knew them before they were famous" bragging rights, and now so can you! Last of all, don't forget to get their FREE DOWNLOAD of their hit song "Get Close" on Purevolume NOW! CLICK HERE

Unfortunately, we won't be seeing much of these Califronia natives around the East Coast right now, but click here for Ernie's Battle of the Bands and vote for these guys to be signed for the 2009 Vans Warped Tour!

Call the Cops has now released their debut EP "Motion Sickness", and it can be purchased on Smartpunk or on Itunes for only $4.99. I HIGHLY reccomend purchasing it (Hey at this rate Metro Station is never going to release another album, and Call the Cops just might take their spot in line).

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Beretta Jane is my Rock n Roll Bitch!


When music listeners think of Rock n Roll and Maryland, a few names come to mind; O.A.R, Good Charlotte, All Time Low, and yes; BERETTA JANE. This Baltimore glam-rock favorite has created the latest buzz around the DC/MD area. Beretta Jane kicked off a kick ass show this summer featuring Maryland natives, Good Charlotte, and the Arizona quintet, The Maine. With their 80s rocker style and sparkly pink drum sets, they really got the crowd pumped. During the show they played their full 5 song EP with full of sick guitar solos. The band formed in the summer of 2007, and in no time, they were picked up by 98 Rock*’s Program Dave Hill. Their hit song, “Die 4 U”, was put on regular rotation on 98 Rock and soon became one of the MOST REQUESTED SONGS! You can catch Beretta Jane frequently at local clubs such as The Recher (Towson, MD) and Sonar (Baltimore, MD). 

You can download their EP on itunes as well as their newly released single "My Way". The EP features: 

Die 4 U
Tippin Bottles
Rock n Roll Bitch
Where I Call Home
Blacktop Holiday

Watch their music video for Die 4 U right here on The Pulse: 

Click here for their Myspace and listen to a full stream of their EP.

You can even check them out on youtube here

Sunday, March 8, 2009

DC/MD/VA Concert Venues

So I thought I should post this as a sort of reference blog so people know where they can look to find local music live. They are all clubs/bars in the DC/MD/VA area that have local bands, small touring bands, and other indie artists. Typical music to be found in these clubs are ALL types of rock, electronic, rap, hip hop, folk, pop, indie, classic rock, oldies, cover bands, and on a rare occasion, country. Basically, EVERYTHING

Rams Head Live
The Recher 
Rams Head Tavern
Sonar Baltimore (My FAVORITE)
Talking Head
Santa Fe Cafe (
The Ottobar
Fish Head Cantina
Angel's Rock Bar

Washington D.C.
9:30 Club
Black Cat
Rock and Roll Hotel 
Velvet Lounge**
The Red and The Black

Jammin Java

*The majority of these venues are in the  Baltimore Area, excluding the Santa Fe Cafe (College Park, MD)

**Typically 18+ or 21+ shows

Friday, March 6, 2009

From Super Smash to Super Mash


LA Natives Dick Flink and Nick Fenmore - or the Super Mash Bros - describe their group as “Girl Talk’s Hot Cousin. like Girl Talk, Super Mash Bros produces mash-ups of top 40 singles and old-school music, but they also mix in things like european electronica, acoustic inide music, and much more. For example, on their track "Meet Me At Fantasy Island", this dynamic duo seemlessly blends Lenny Kravitz's "Getaway" to Hurricane Chris's "A Bay Bay”. They also use DJ Assault's “Ass ‘n Titties”, Creed's "Higher, Nelly's “Country Grammar”, Blink 182's “What’s my Age Again", and Lil Wayne's “A Millie”.

Their debut album, Fuck Bitches, Get Euros, is more than just mashups, but a real album. Each track has a completely different sound, and the tracks contrast each other well.

Now, here's the greatest part of it all, YOU CAN GET THEIR ALBUM LEGALLY FOR FREE! Yes you heard me well. Super Mash Bros has their debut album Fuck Bitches, Get Euros on (the group's own website). So, WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR?

UPDATE: make sure you download the file from Lazerwolf to avoid spamming and viruses.

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Dancing at the Disco with The Dance Party

We endorse 2 things Jameson Whiskey and Danger. Photo by gsmphotography

Who would've known that Prince Georges County gave Text Colorbirth to a hipster indie pop/electronica band ? Well THE DANCE PARTY (TDP)  has put the DANCE back in PARTY. This high-energy rock group is from PG and DC. Think of Metro Station meets B-52s. Now that's TDP. These guys have released and EP and a their debut album, "Friction!, Friction! Friction!". 

With their catchy lyrics about "dying on the dance floor" and having "new wave love" these guys are in position to take over the pop world. These guys are also phenomenal live. TDP even invites you on the stage for a bit of dancing =] TDP's shows tend to sell out (especially at the Rock and Roll Hotel in DC) so make sure you get your tickets to their next show.

Fun Fact: Who would have known that their lead singer, Mick Coogan, is an AP English teacher at Northwestern High School in Hyattsville, MD.  I would have loved to have him as my english teacher!

You can check The Dance Party out on Purevolume and Myspace:

BONUS TREAT: TDP is interviewed by the DCist. Go check it out (it's pretty funny)!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

We Are, The Pulse

From rock to bluegrass; from classical to electronica; from pop to rap...and everything in between. Music is the pulse that defines who we are. Music is the pulse that makes us believe in anything and everything. WE are The Pulse; a blog about music and everything about music. We take you bake to our roots in DC/MD, and across the world to bring you the best in what underground music has to offer. Whether we are reviewing and interviewing a local high school ska band or an internationally touring pop sensation, we've got it covered inside and out. Each week we come to you with another band or artist that you HAVE to listen to. After spending hours researching, browsing the web, and procrastinating, we have found the best of the best. disagree? let us know about your favorite groups and we might feature them in one of our weekly artist featurettes. We will also announce upcoming tours, and even post about extraneous other events that pop up in the music industry now and then. Now sit back, turn up the volume, and take a look and a listen at what the Pulse has to offer.