Tue 18 Oct – Minus the Bear 10th Anniversary Tour "It does not feel like ten years," they told us and then proceeded to blow my mind like they do time and time again.At one point I was in the middle of a straight up dance party!They played every song you could have ever wanted and left NYC in a luster only they could provide.If you have never seen minus the bear know this,...THEY SOUND BETTER LIVE AND WILL ROCK YOUR SOUL OUT OF YOUR FACE!FIN!
Fred Mascherino is rocking harder than ever these days. The accomplished musician is mostly known for his tenure in Taking Back Sunday from 2003-2007 as lead guitarist and co-vocalist while the band was at the height of their game (2004′s Where You Want to Be [Victory Records] debuted at #3 on the Billboard charts and Louder Now [Warner Bros. Records] earned the band all sorts of appearances- like one in an episode of Degrassi that was named after the first track of the record)… but Fred has been making music for far longer than that stint. He was in the Pennsylvanian band, Brody, from 1992-1999 and then in the trio Breaking Pangaea, which eventually got signed to EQUAL VISION RECORDS. In 2003 Fred saw the first release of a solo song, “Heading Back East,” under the moniker “Basic Design.”
The two had never really spoke before, though they both appeared on Say Anything’s In Defense Of The Genre LP [J Records]. It was even widely rumored that Andy Jackson was going to fill the void in Taking Back Sunday when Fred left. But this chance encounter resulted in both men exchanging mutual appreciation for each other’s previous endeavors and expressing an aching desire to start something fresh.
Hayley Williams also contributed her voice to a song for Andy’s most recent project (before Terrible Things) which appears in an acoustic version on Death In The Park‘s EP [END Sounds]. It was just announced a few days ago that the DITP LP will be available for digital download on August 24th. September 14th is the actual CD release date. Andy is also performing Death in the Park material solo acoustic at the AP tent on the 8 Warped Tour dates that Terrible Things are performing in 2010.
When Fred got home from that solo acoustic tour, he emailed Andy a few demos. As the story goes, Andy couldn’t even get through a full song before he shut it off to call Fred up. “I love it. As long as we’re writing songs like that, I want to be a part of this,” (AltPress.com Exclusive: Fred Mascherino and Andy Jackson introduce Initials) Andy told Fred. They were both ready to stretch out from the genres that have constricted their music. No matter what project either artist has pursued they have been branded, “emo,” despite Fred’s degree in jazz Performance. The bassist they initially connected with, Steve Lucarelli, has a love of jazz music like Fred. Also like Fred, Steve has yet to play in a jazzy band. Steve Lucarelli is known as the bassist of the self-proclaimed Blue-Collar-Metal band, Once Nothing [Solid State / CI Records]. Founding VersaEmerge drummer, Anthony Martone, also found he had great chemistry with Fred and Andy. In October 2009 the quartet announced their project, Initials.
Fred, Andy, Anthony and Steve played a handful of shows in the Northeast as Initials… 2 in October (The Note in West Chester, PA & Cameo Gallery in Brooklyn, NY) and 2 in November (The Knitting Factory in Brooklyn, NY & 7 @ 7 in Cherry Hill, NJ). We didn’t hear from the group again until they posted a video on December 2nd, announcing that Josh Eppard was now part of the group.
“We’d been trying out a bunch of drummers looking for the right fit. We had some shows coming up and Anthony Martone took the time to do us a huge favor and learn the songs and play them with us. Since the lineup hadn’t been totally solidified yet, and Anthony had other projects coming up, we wanted to makes sure we were all committed to Initials, and that’s when Josh [Eppard] walked in and the chemistry was solid. Anthony is a good friend and an amazing drummer, and we wish him well on his other projects!” -Fred Mascherino (AltPress.com Exclusive: Initials reveal new drummer Josh Eppard)
Josh Eppard is most known for his drumming and songwriting (and back-up vocals) in the “new prog” genre-defining band, Coheed and Cambria. He first sat behind a drum kit when he was 11. Josh’s older brother, Joey Eppard, and their friend, Chris Bittner, were inspired to start a band… only, they needed a drummer. So with the help of dad (and seasoned musician), Jimmy Eppard, the boys set little Joshy behind a snare drum and high-hat. Legend is, Josh inherently kept good time.
After about a year of honing their skills in the basement the younglings gave themselves a name and began playing shows around Kingston and Woodstock, New York. They called themselves, 3.
In 1993 it seemed as if the trio hit their big break… Michael Lang, co-creator of the original 1969 Woodstock Festival, wanted to represent the band and give them a prime performance slot at the Woodstock 1994 Festival. Joey, Chris and Josh signed a contract with Lang along with Jimmy Eppard and Michael Birnbaum as co-managers of the teenagers. A movie was even made about them. Unfortunately, everything fell to shit. Their prime time-slot ended up being noon the first day of the festival and the movie never saw the light of day. Needless to say, they ended the contract and continued to write, grow, and perform.
In 1998 their efforts and creativity were about to pay off. 3 was picked up by universal records…. but amidst recording their debut, Universal went through a merger and dropped 75% of their acts and staff. The trio soldiered on, just trying to get their music heard. Eventually they crossed paths with Tom Benton, who personally funded the completion of their debut record and created a record label [Planet Noise Records] to get it out. 19 year old Josh, however, couldn’t escape the burning desire to play on as much music as he could. Against the advice and will of his family and friends, he left the band that turned him into a musician, and pursued a career in studio drumming. He was replaced in 3 by his mentor and local legend, Chris “Gartdrumm” Gartmann (of Peacebomb).
In the next 3 years Josh began to work with his friend, David Parker, who built a studio in his parents’ basement, but they didn’t form a rock band. Josh did get studio work at Applehead drumming for musicians such as R.A. the Rugged Man and Hesher, among others… but this project Josh was working on with his buddy, who he called “Wavis,” was hip-hop. Going by the name of Lil’ J, Josh spent a year putting together an album with Bobby Delicious and Wavis at the helm. They called it, Newborn, but the record remains unreleased.
In 2001 Josh’s favorite local band, Shabutie was having issues with their drummer, Nate Kelley. He immediately jumped at the chance to rock on stage again. The band changed their name to Coheed and Cambria, scored a record deal with Equal Vision, put together an album that included some reworkings of the Shabutie demos as well as a tune that featured a guitar solo by Dr. Know of hardcore-punk pioneers Bad Brains (Second Stage Turbine Blade) at Applehead (with Chris Bittner and Michael Birnbaum) and began performing in areas they hadn’t before. Breaking Pangaea brought Coheed and Cambria out on their first package tour. Josh with Coheed and Cambria, put out a platinum selling record, a gold selling record, and a gold selling DVD… a total of 3 albums and 2 DVDs. Mid 2006 Josh left as a result of creative constriction.
After taking some time off, Josh hooked up with Wavis to work on a Weerd Science LP. In 2005 Equal Vision put out a compilation of some of Josh’s rap songs that were recorded whenever he was home from tour with Coheed and Cambria, called Friends And Nervous Breakdowns. This time around the duo recorded a cohesive record featuring more live instrumentation and the story of Josh Eppard. Sick Kids has yet to see a release.
In 2008 Josh showed up at some of 3′s hometown shows (the band now signed to Metal Blade Records) and sat in for a few songs. One thing lead to another and eventually Josh joined up with his brother to put on a few Eppard Brothers shows. The first show was billed as just the duo, but they pulled all sorts of friends on stage. Chris Bittner, who had not performed since he left 3 in 2001, was pulled up as well and they had an impromptu “original 3″ reunion. Coheed and Cambria’s Mic Todd even sat in for a set at an Eppard Brothers show. Jimmy Eppard began to hold down the bass with his sons and eventually the group evolved into the trio, E-Males. According to Jimmy’s myspace, the E-Males recorded an album at Applehead with Chris Bittner and Mike Birnbaum. There’s no more information about that.
“Josh Eppard is my favorite drummer,” Fred gushes in just about every interview about the band. A strong supporter of Weerd Science, Fred made it out to the first Weerd Science tour date at The Chameleon Club in Lancaster, PA and mouthed every word out in the audience!
In early 2010 Initials recorded their debut full length at Synchromesh Studios in Birmingham with Jason Elgin. Some songs were written by Fred Mascherino prior to the formation of the project (such as “Revolution,” “Lullaby” which is originally a Breaking Pangaea song, “Terrible Things” which is a The Color Fred Song), some were written by Andy Jackson before he met Fred, and a few songs they wrote together. The previously written songs have been rewritten to reflect where the individuals are today as well as refer to the events that greatly inspired Fred. There were a series of about 50 house fires started in Fred’s hometown of Coatesville, Pennsylvania in January 2009. The band changed their name to avoid a lawsuit with another band of the same name. They were looking for other names, but couldn’t fight the feeling that the band name and the album name sum up the story perfectly. Terrible Things, oddly enough, are signed to Universal-Motown Records. The album art was done by Ryan Russell (who has also taken all of the band’s promotional photographs) and features Fred’s son and daughter. Terrible Things Terrible Things (mastered by Roger Lian) will be released August 31st, 2010. On April 17th Terrible Things put out a 7″ with demos of “The Hills of Birmingham” (which was the first tune they “initially” posted on myspace) and “Up At Night”. The band has released their first single, “Revolution” and have already been touring extensively… in a van… with only one other person (it’s Fred, Andy, Josh, bass player, sound guy/tech- Tom Martin). The “young” band has toured with Minus the Bear, Circa Survive, The Offspring, Story of the Year, Maylene and the Sons of Disaster, and have performed with Dashboard Confessional, Evolett, The Queen Killing Kings, 30 Seconds to Mars. July 19th the song, “Terrible Things” was revealed on Ragged. July 12th “Wrap Me Up” was exclusively posted on AbsolutePunk. July 6th “Lullaby” was exclusively posted on Alternative Press. June 28th Terrible Things posted “Up At Night” on their PureVolume page. April 26th “Revolution” was posted on MySpace and was released to iTunes and ShockHound on May 25th.
Vans Warped Tour Jul 29 – Marcus Amphitheatre – Milwaukee, WI [event] Jul 30 – Comerica Park – Detroit, MI [event] Jul 31 – First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre – Tinley Park, IL [event] Aug 01 – Canterbury Park – Shakopee, MN [event] Aug 02 – Sandstone Amphitheatre – Bonner Springs, KS [event] Aug 05 – Northlands Park – Edmonton, Alberta [event] Aug 07 – Utah State Fairgrounds – Salt Lake City, UT [event] Aug 08 – Invesco Field – Denver, CO [event]
Terrible Things with Circa Survive, O’Brother Aug 12 – Black Sheep – Colorado Springs, CO [event] Aug 14 – House of Bricks – Des Moines, IA [event] Aug 15 – Chubby Rain – Poplar Grove, IL [event] Aug 17 – Musica – Akron, OH [event]
Terrible Things with 3 Aug 28 – Bearsville Theater – Woodstock, NY [event]
Terrible Things with MAE, Windsor Drive Oct 01 – The Canal Club – Richmond, VA [event] Oct 02 – The Casbah – Charlotte, NC Oct 03 – Cat’s Cradle – Carrboro, NC Oct 05 - Vinyl - Atlanta, GA Oct 06 – The Social – Orlando, FL [event] Oct 07 – Club Downunder – Tallahassee, FL [event] Oct 09 – The End – Nashville, TN [event] Oct 12 – The Historic Southgate House – Newport, KY [event] Oct 13 – Musica – Akron, OH Oct 14 – Water Street Music Hall – Rochester, NY Oct 15 – The Space – Hamden, CT [event] Oct 16 – Middle East Downstairs – Cambridge, MA [event] Oct 17 – School Of Rock East – South Hackensack, NJ [event] Oct 20 – Gramercy Theatre – New York, NY [event] Oct 21 – Eleanor Rigby’s – Jermyn, PA Oct 22 – World Café Live – Philadelphia, PA Oct 23 – Chameleon Club – Lancaster, PA Oct 24 – Altar Bar – Pittsburgh, PA [event] Oct 26 – The Eagle Theatre – Pontiac, MI Oct 27 – The Bottom Lounge – Chicago, IL [event] Oct 28 – Off Broadway Nightclub – St. Louis, MO Oct 30 – The Record Bar – Kansas City, MO Oct 31 – The Waiting Room – Omaha, NE Nov 02 – The Marquis Theatre – Denver, CO Nov 04 – The Electric Theatre – St. George, UT Nov 05 – Avalon Theatre – Salt Lake City, UT [event] Nov 06 – The Venue – Boise, ID Nov 07 – El Corazon – Seattle, WA Nov 10 – Bottom Of The Hill – San Francisco, CA Nov 11 – Downtown Brewing Company San Luis – Obispo, CA Nov 12 - The Glasshouse - Pomona, CA [event] Nov 13 – El Rey Theatre – Los Angeles, CA [event] Nov 16 – Nile Theatre – Mesa, AZ Nov 17 - The Launchpad - Albuquerque, NM Nov 19 – The Door – Dallas, TX
When Coheed and Cambria appeared on MTV’s TRL in January 2006, Michelle Nolan (Straylight Run) performed the female vocals of “The Suffering” with the band. Breaking Pangaea took Coheed and Cambria out on their first few tours. Coheed and Cambria will not be taking Initials out this summer.
Initials will be performing their first show with this line-up on Saturday, January 9th, 2009 supporting Straylight Run’s John Nolan (original Taking Back Sunday) with Gabriel the Marine and Ocean Is Theory at The Note in West Chester, Pennsylvania.
It’s all one colossal, constantly churning circle.
This year's batch of top albums was a bit difficult to compile for me. Not to say 2009 was a terrible year in music, it wasn't - but it also wasn't anything astounding either. That being said -- here's my list. Love it, hate it, argue with it. Color me apathetic. :)
1. Nightmares For A Week - Feelin’ Blue | myspace.com/nightmaresforaweek 2. Urban Fetch - The Shots | myspace.com/urbanfetch 3. Dan Blackburn - It Remains to be Seen | myspace.com/blackburned 4. Session 606 - The Great Act of Failure | myspace.com/session606 5. Moving Mountains - With One’s Heart In One’s Mouth | myspace.com/movingmountains 6. Rick Whispers - Case of the Mondays | myspace.com/rickwhispers 7. Animals Like Us - Machines | myspace.com/animalslikeus 8. My Only Escape - Mayor of Party (It’s Hard to Measure When You’re Drinking Straight from the Keg) | myspace.com/myonlyescapex 9. Weerd Science - Dear S.A.M. (UnRapped) | myspace.com/weerdscience 10. Thieves And Villains - Settle New York, Settle | myspace.com/thievesandvillains 11. The Ricochet - Runaway Getaway | myspace.com/thericochetny 12. PUGS - The Last Hope | myspace.com/pugs845 13. Walking Bombs - + Side For Eos | myspace.com/walkingbombs 14. Evazan - Flow | myspace.com/evazan 15. Weerd Science - I Wish I Went to College | myspace.com/weerdscience 16. White Out - Love For Haters | myspace.com/whiteoutlw 17. Spineless Thug - Phineas | myspace.com/codenamemorocco 18. Cosmonaut - Sleepless | myspace.com/cosmonautnyc 19. Mours - Christmas From Hell | myspace.com/theMours
This free digital sampler was compiled to give a glimpse into the diverse musicality that dwells in Hudson Valley, NY. New York is a vast state… there’s so much more to it than just the city. Here’s a bit that goes on from Westchester to Albany. Many many thanks to the musicians for taking part in this project and keeping the music alive!
The idea for this sampler was inspired by the combination of the 10 year anniversary of Error 404 - Not Found compilation and the release of the “So Much For Us” book. Both archive the underground rock scene of Kingston/Woodstock in the late 90’s leading me to believe that I’m not alone in or crazy for feeling such passion toward the music to emerge from this area.
Most of these songs are unmastered. Some are rough mixes. Some are personal/basement recordings. One is live.