Category Archives: 2010

Review: Iron Maiden – The Final Frontier

Released: August 17, 2010 Label: UMe After waning over the last couple of albums during Bruce Dickinson’s first stint, two ill-conceived releases with Blaze Bayley and a lackluster return for Dickinson on Brave New World, Iron Maiden stormed back to life with their last two albums and an outstanding tour documentary. Perhaps no other band in their third decade could… Read more »

Review: Frontier(s) – The Plains

Released: June 29, 2010 Label: No Sleep Records Frontier(s), featuring Elliott / Falling Forward front man Chris Higdon, offers two strong tracks on this 7″ that are reminiscent of TSOL’s often under-appreciated mid-80s period where their meanderings into art punk began to take on a bit of a hard rock edge. In fact, this EP’s dark, haunting sound would have… Read more »

DVD: The Specials – 30th Anniversary Tour

Released: July 27, 2010 Label: MVD Visual Back in 1998, I was lucky enough to catch the Specials on the Warped Tour. Despite being only a subset of the band’s classic line-up, they were outstanding. Nonetheless, the constant parade of half-hearted reunions that permeate the rock scene today still kept my guard up for this release of the 2009 reunion… Read more »

Live: Thrice, Kevin Devine, Bad Veins, The Dig

Recher Theatre, Towson, Maryland June 26, 2010 When I last saw Thrice in 2002, they were touring for The Illusion of Safety, a young band with promise that was, at that point, unfulfilled. They played with heart and daring, but not all of their ideas worked. Over the course of the next eight years, perhaps no band has grown so… Read more »

Review: Stone Axe/Mighty High split 7 inch

Released: June 29, 2010 Label: Ripple Music Stoner rock always conjures up images of slow, sludgy tunes played in dark, smoky rooms…but it isn’t always like that. The bands on this split EP are perfect examples. Stone Axe’s “Metal Damage” is a mid-paced tune that mixes metal heaviness with a 70s hard rock groove. It has more punch and a… Read more »

Review: Everyone Everywhere – self-titled LP

Label: Tiny Engines Released: May 4, 2010 From the phased guitar and lifting leads that open “Tiny Planet,” there is a sense of hope and happiness (even as melancholy tugs at it) that pervades Everyone Everywhere’s self-titled full-length debut. As the album runs between big, loud, ringing chords and quiet, intricate, interwoven guitar and bass lines, it finds itself in… Read more »

Review: Stegosaur – Adventure 7 inch

Released: October 13, 2009 Label: Seafoam Recordings Stegosaur opens up this 7″ by discussing the trials and tribulations of making (and selling) a record. If a commercially successful record was made by packing a lot into a short record, they’d be in great shape. Sadly, the “industry” isn’t quite like that. “A Headache” is a driving tune with a touch… Read more »

Review: Dirt Mall – Pacifuego

Released: February 2, 2010 Label: Daykamp Records Dirt Mall’s last album, Got the Goat by the Horns, survived more on raw energy than on innovation or spectacular songwriting. The songs were solid, to be sure, but it was the kick behind them that really propelled the album. While that album was well-worth checking out, the band had to kick up… Read more »

Review: Gaslight Anthem – American Slang

Released: June 15, 2010 Label: SideOneDummy Records The '59 Sound, Gaslight Anthem's 2008 release, got a lot of comparisons to Springsteen. That was fair enough as there is no doubt that the band's sound was influenced by the godfather of their home state's rock and roll scene. However, what seemed to get lost in those comparisons, was that weren't simply… Read more »

Review: Rooftops – A Forest of Polarity

Label: Clickpop Records (CD)/Topshelf Records (LP) Released: May 18, 2010 It's a little bit strange to put on an album by a young post-rock band and think, "This remind me of Yes!" For snobbier fans of the genre, it might be an immediate turn-off to see the comparison to the arena rocking prog dinosaur of days gone by, but fear… Read more »