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This week’s unsigned band is Burnout from New York. The band is made up of Louie Aronowitz and other rotating members and play an interesting blend of pop rock and folk music. Burnout recently released a full length album, I Should Have Been From Jersey… and a split acoustic EP with previous band of the week Weekend Stars.

Who does the band consist of and what part do they have in the band?

The band consists of Louie Aronowitz. I write and play everything on the records.

How was the band formed and how long have you been a band?

The band has been formed and broken up so many times over the last 8 years, I’ve lost count.

How did you come up with the name for the band?

The name is taken from a Green Day song.

How would you describe your music?

I’d describe the music as pop rock.

What bands/artists have influenced you?

Influences - Nirvana, Elliot Smith, The Shins, Igor Stravinsky, Blink-182

How would you describe the music scene in your area?

The music scene in my area - non existent.

What is the best experience you’ve had on tour?

Best experience on tour was eating at Bojangles and Waffle House in the same day!

What do you think is the biggest challenge of being a unsigned band/artist?

For unsigned artists the biggest challenge is getting people to give you a chance. It’s so easy today to record your ep quickly and cheaply, that the number of bands in the soup has sky rocketed, and it is nearly impossible to sift through the sub par music out there. Also, money becomes your biggest handicap, because if you can afford it, you can make everything sound good, and promote easier on the web.

How do you view the state of the music industry today?

The music industry today seems to be essentially the same as it was before. People seem to think it is changing, but the reality is, bands could always book their own tours and get their music out there, just now once you have a following you can side-step the labels.

What does your band hope to accomplish within the next year?

In the next year, it would be nice to go on tour and record the follow up to I Should Have Been From Jersey… (the current record). After receiving interest from some label representatives recently, it would also be nice to work with a label in the near future.

Is your music available for purchase/download anywhere?

Yes, music the new album is available for free here: http://www.mediafire.com/?yymhzjczv2h

Anything else you would like to add or acknowledge?

Thanks for featuring us!

Mount Vesuvius

Mount Vesuvius is an indie band from Oregon. This duo of Kyle’s has been a band for a few months and have a handful of songs you can hear on their myspace. While their music can’t be defined into one genre, they mix different elements to create an enticing sound. Currently working on creating their first full length album, Mount Vesuvius have a plan to make their mark in the music scene this year.

Who does the band consist of and what part do they have in the band?

Kyle P: Our band consists of two members. Kyle Lembke is the brains behind it all, writing and recording all the music while Kyle Pedersen sings and writes the lyrics sometimes assisting on the vocal melodies.

How was the band formed and how long have you been a band?

Kyle P: We formed in November of 2009. We had been co workers for about a year and a half and had always talked about doing something together but just never did. After a Built To Spill concert one night we decided we should do it. Same night we got our band name.

How did you come up with the name for the band?

Kyle L: A long story involving diarrhea and equating one’s anus to a volcano such as Mount Vesuvius.

Kyle P: Funny story (that is if you know us.) The name came from talking about taking a dump. I’m weird and was making fun of a co worker for pooping and compared his behind to the volcano Mount Vesuviusbecause that was the first volcano that popped in my head. Not Mount Hood in which we live by. Or Mount St Helens. But Mount Vesuvius. Plus its referenced in Zoolander so that makes it a bad ass name.

How would you describe your music?

Kyle L: I honestly don’t know. There is no purposeful aping of other artists. We don’t set out to make music that sounds live X with a little bit of Y. Some songs are loud and others are quiet. Some have programmed drum beats and others have acoustic. I feel like out music is distinctly ours, but even we don’t have a single sound. I don’t know.

Kyle P: I would describe our music as different. We have yet to name someone we sound like. We have our influences on why we are in a band and who we want to sound like but not one of our songs has sounded the same so I don’t know what to call us.

What bands/artists have influenced you?

Kyle L: Hundreds. I suppose that overall my biggest influences were bands/artists like Elliott Smith, Modest Mouse, Menomena, and Fugazi. But lately I’ve felt influenced by groups/artists like the Silver Apples, Can, Neu!, Liquid Liquid, Charles Mingus, Sun Ra, Four Tet, Madlib, Jorge Ben and really too many others.

Kyle P: For me I wanted to get into a band because of pop-punk acts like Blink-182 and Fall Out Boy. But now I want to try to adopt the vocal styling of bands like Lydia, Copeland, and Fly Upright Kite and make my lyrics more mature then the aforementioned bands.

How would you describe the music scene in your area?

Kyle P: It’s a great scene I’d say. There are always opportunities to play and plenty of bands to play with. Everyone I have talked to so far has been really cool and supportive.

What do you think is the biggest challenge of being a unsigned band?

Kyle P: Getting people to listen to you and not ignore your messages and pestering about listening to your songs. We just want to be in this scene. I’m not asking to be a huge rock star but its so hard reaching people.

How do you view the state of the music industry today?

Kyle L: I think it’s great! There is more music being made than even and the internet makes it possible to hear bands (such as ours) that you never would have heard otherwise.

Kyle P: I think it can be solid. You can make a career out of music. You don’t have to be rich but you can live if you play it right and make the right moves. Yeah its expensive and difficult but its so rewarding to see good things happen for you.

What does your band hope to accomplish within the next year?

Kyle L: Get signed, record, tour.

Kyle P: To reach many people, write and record a full length record and to head out on a tour.

Is your music available for purchase/download anywhere?

Kyle P:On our myspace we set up a Paypal account where you can donate to the fund of us making a full length and if you do donate and let us know you did we’ll email you the songs directly. I’d probably give them out free if anyone asked anyway.

Anything else you would like to add or acknowledge?

Kyle P: Our friends have been really cool and supportive. I’d like to thank my family as well. Especially my little brother. And all the bands that are starting to reach out to us and helping us establish something of our own. Its been great so far and I hope this first real year for Mount Vesuvius is huge. And we’d like to thank you for doing this feature! :)

SWKWS

Strong Waves Kill Weak Swimmers is a duo coming from Pittsburgh, PA. While both members have been making music for a while, this project has only been around a few months. The band can be defined as experimental, as every song they have released had a different sound to it. The variety found on their EP, Questions Are Like The Knocks Of A Beggar Man, offers a song for everyone.

Who does the band consist of and what part do they have in the band?
Jack Gazik does all the music and sings and I [Mick Malone] write the lyrics and sing.

How was the band formed and how long have you been a band?
Jack and I were in a “band” called Gossip Grrrlll![http://www.myspace.com/supgossipgirl] for a short time last year, we basically used the project as a bit of a social experiment to prove that anyone could just sink their teeth into a fad and follow the clichés of whatever was popular at the time; which was the emotionless robot vocals of cranked auto-tune and pop beats drenched in neon splatter, and win over fans. We pushed every cliché to the extreme and people took us seriously, which was heart breaking. After releasing an EP of ridiculousness, we decided we’d rather invest our time into something worthwhile, and Strong Waves Kill Weak Swimmers Was Born. We’ve been writing under that name for just a month or so.

How did you come up with the name for the band?
We were originally called Good Cop Bear Cop, which originated from a brief pop-punk trio we were in together. When we switched our sound up and started writing what would eventually become our EP, we found the name didn’t really fit our sound at all. Not to mention there is like 15,000 bands out there with Bear in the title. I had wanted to name a previous band I was in Strong Waves Kill Weak Swimmers, though the dudes in that band didn’t seem too stoked on it, so I just had it in the back of my mind for a while, and when we were thinking up new names, I suggested it and Jack liked it.

How would you describe your music?
This is always a difficult question for us, and we’re stoked on it. Our EP ranges from dark orchestral pop (that’s probably a genre, right?) to quirky electronica, to acoustic-folk(ish) to chill indie rock and touches of post-hardcore. We like to experiment with a lot of different sounds, so even if someone hates one of our songs, they might dig another.

What bands/artists have influenced you?
We both have a pretty huge array of influences. Manchester Orchestra, Kay Kay and His Weathered Underground, Look Mexico, Kevin Devine, Portugal. The Man, Person L, Say Anything, The Mars Volta, The Starting Line, Circa Survive, Forgive Durden, Sunny Day Real Estate, Brazil, Lydia, Carissas Weird. This list could go on for days, but I’ll spare you guys that. Lyrically I draw a lot from books and film. The title of the EP “Questions Are Like The Knocks Of A Beggar Man” is actually a line from The Third Policeman by Brian O’Nolan (published as Flann O’Brien).

How would you describe the music scene in your area?
For a while I was pretty bitter, thinking Pittsburgh was just a bunch of generic death metal bands and crowds that only wanted to mosh. I saw The Dangerous Summer in a 650+ capacity room with like eight people…but there’s seems to be a lot of awesome bands finally breaking through and I’m pretty excited about that. One band in particular, A Voice Like Rhetoric, I imagine them having a huge 2010.

What do you think is the biggest challenge of being a unsigned band/artist?
I think any band will tell you the biggest challenge of being an unsigned artist is just being heard. We’re in an age where anybody with a macbook and garageband can write, record and call themselves a band. Myspace is pretty much 95% bands and companies trying to promote themselves and we’re all scrambling to connect to that tiny 5%.

How do you view the state of the music industry today?
I could rant on this topic for hours, but I’ll keep it short and touch on just two points;
Too many bands are in it for the wrong reason. Originality and sincerity are pushed aside for good looking dudes writing throw away pop records to please fifteen year olds (I’m looking at you, Cobra Starship and The Maine) and get moderately famous.
And you can’t stop music piracy and it’s time for bands to get creative. Labels are getting closer and closer to being nothing more than a bands personal assistant. Any band can do all of the necessary things on their own if they’re just willing to work for it. Sites like bandcamp and itunes make it simple as hell to sell your music, you can promote and connect with fans through twitter and facebook and there are countless companies that can print merch for a small price. I’m only hoping this helps weed out the shitty bands that want underage chicks and fame and the hardworking bands can rise to the top.

What does your band hope to accomplish within the next year?
I’m hoping this summer we can take some time and really get down to writing a solid full length and maybe play some shows. We’re currently a two-piece and we have a ridiculous amount of instruments packed into each song and we’re hoping to avoid the “plug in your ipod, it’s karaoke time” so it’s going to be tough.

Is your music available for purchase/download anywhere?
You can download our debut EP on our bandcamp page; http://www.wearestrongwaves.bandcamp.com
We strongly encourage anyone and everyone to download and share our music with whoever might be into it. Post it on your favorite music sharing blog and torrent site (don’t pretend you don’t do it). We care way more about people hearing us and connecting to the music than we do about money, so go crazy.
We’re also on myspace at http://www.myspace.com/wearestrongwaves

Anything else you would like to add or acknowledge.
Thank you for what you’re doing. It’s awesome seeing sites like this that are dedicated to getting awesome music noticed.

Floral Terrace

When pop-rock bands are a dime a dozen it’s hard to stand out, but Floral Terrace manage to do so. This three-piece from Haverstraw, NY have released two EPs with songs that draw on a variety of influences. You can catch the band on a short east coast tour now and read a standard interview with vocalist/bassist Justin below. 

Who does the band consist of and what part do they have in the band?

Justin Olori - Vocals/bass , George Bosotina - Vocals/Guitar and John Damiano on drums.

How was the band formed and how long have you been a band?

George and I have been playing music together locally since our early highschool days and have always had people come and go. Floral Terrace has been around since august 2008.

How did you come up with the name for the band?

In winter 2008 in one of our old bands George and I had a song called floral terrace and it was probably our best song with the best name. John used to help the band out sometimes and he thought we should name the band that, so we did.

How would you describe your music?

Alternative Pop rock with a twist of whatever we feel like! no rules :) 

What bands/artists have influenced you? 

Anything nifty like Vampire Weekend. Also modern rock music like Anberlin or Motion City Soundtrack. We also listen to a lot of pop like Cute Is What We Aim For and All Time Low.

How would you describe the music scene in your area?

Very Metal for the most part because that stuff is great to rock to!! thank god the kids are so supportive with us.  

What is the best experience you’ve had on tour?

There has been many but I’ll say off the top of my head our first time in Colorado when we had over 200 kids singing along to our demos! that was so cool.

What do you think is the biggest challenge of being a unsigned band/artist?

Being booked for live shows in positions where you really need/deserve to play definitely are a challenge while unsigned. Also money can become very tight very fast for a variety of reasons while unsigned.

How do you view the state of the music industry today?

Changing but ok!

What does your band hope to accomplish within the next year?

Debut album in stores, touring the west coast and abroad.

Is your music available for purchase/download anywhere?

yes! http://www.apple.com/search/?q=floral+terrace&sec=ipoditunes

Anything else you would like to add or acknowledge? 

please follow us on twitter www.twitter.com/floralterrace or add us on myspace thanks!

Weekend Stars

Weekend Stars is an alternative rock band from Westchester, NY who display both pop and indie influences. Singer Mike Villata has a voice similar to Kevin Devine’s that leaves you entranced as he sings thoughtful lyrics of death, love, and friendships. On their debut album, Tambourine Girl, the band has created a blend of music pleasant to the ears and leaves you looking forward to what material they will release in the future.

Who does the band consist of and what part do they have in the band?

Our band is: Mike Villata (guitar/vocals), Chris Alley (lead guitar), Paul Papantonio (drums), Chris Villata (bass)

How was the band formed and how long have you been a band?

We’re been playing together for a little over a year now, we played our first show as a band in October 2008

How did you come up with the name for the band?

Back in high school there was a band called A Million Billion Trillion Stars who wrote a song called Waltzo - one of the lyrics in it said “we we’re never one for where we are/drawing on our desks and in weekend stars”

How would you describe your music?

When we first started it was kind of melodramatic pop, almost singer-songwriter with a band. Over the past year it has evolved into something more resembling Alternative Rock/Pop - We like blending lows and loads.

What bands/artists have influenced you?

There are probably far too many to mention that have influenced the sound and songs that we make - ranging from Kevin Devine to Explosions in the Sky, and lots of other stuff - it’s hard to pinpoint exact influences because the four of us come from different musical backgrounds and bring different ideas in.

How would you describe the music scene in your area?

The music scene around here varies - we’re lucky enough to start off from a very musical area, with lots of supportive friends that make incredible music that pushes us and inspires us to make something great. People like Aaron Maine (of Space Ghost Cowboys), Nick Corbo, Berdais, Time Vampire, Candy Hearts are such incredible songwriters and musicians that it’s really an incredible place to be playing music.

What do you think is the biggest challenge of being a unsigned band/artist?

Getting heard is probably the hardest thing, getting shows where people besides your friends coming is always hard. 

What does your band hope to accomplish within the next year?

We’re going to be playing an incredible amount of shows around the Northeast/East Coast - along with recording 2 EPs and our new album,

Is your music available for purchase/download anywhere?

It’s available for download on iTunes (http://itunes.apple.com/album/tambourine-girl/id343077640) and physical copies at our webstore (www.weekendstars.bigcartel.com) - it’s on sale at our webstore for $5 until the end of January.

Anything else you would like to add or acknowledge.

thank you! a million times - we’re always blown away and find it surreal that there are people out there enjoying our music and wanting to hear from us and please stay up to date - we’re just starting. 

iOninetyfour

iOninetyfour is a female-fronted pop-punk band from Long Island, NY. In what is mostly a scene fore-fronted by guys, singer Sam Coughlin holds her own with her high energy and unique voice. The band mixes catchy lyrics with heavy riffs and breakdowns and has shared the stage with acts such as The Wonder Years and This Time Next Year. Pick up their CD We Were Contenderson itunes now and be on the lookout for their EP The Things We Hold On To in the coming months.

Who does the band consist of and what part do they have in the band? 

Sam sings, Robbie plays guitar and sings, Dave plays guitar, Jon plays bass, and Mike plays drums. When we aren’t in the band and we have off time, we’re the Power Rangers. 

How was the band formed and how long have you been a band?

The band was originally formed off of another side project titled “Nice Guys Finish First” which was a power pop act. After deciding to part ways with Russell (Frontman and vocalist of Nice Guys Finish First) we decided to stick around and make some music with a different feel to it. Sam joined the band and we became iOninetyfour. Our original goal was to sound like a four year strong type of band just with a female vocalist. We’ve been a band for about 2 1/2 years now.

How would you describe your music?

We would all love to think of our music as a Pop Punk band with a female/ male duel vocals. Obviously we would be lying if we were to say we are the most unique band ever. However, we like to think we are unique while still having that fun pop punk sound that so many people enjoy to listen to. We try to make it so that all types of fans can enjoy our music. Hardcore to power pop, you’ll get what you came for.

What bands/artists have influenced you?

I would say the band that has influenced us most has to be four year strong. But other big influences would be bands such as: Fireworks, The Wonder Years, A Loss For Words, Hit The Lights, & Me Vs Hero. 

How would you describe the music scene in your area?

The music scene here on Long Island is somewhat strong, just extremely corrupt. There is one major booking company and if you don’t have support from them, you’re basically out of the game. There is so much talent on Long Island that never gets anywhere and it’s a terrible thing. I wish it were a different way…. I mean, there are some other booking company’s that put on incredible shows but they aren’t nearly as big of a company.

What do you think is the biggest challenge of being a unsigned band/artist?

The biggest challenge of being an unsigned band today, is probably the lack of opportunities you get as a band. Most bands that get big and everyone loves catch a lucky break. I hope that day is coming for this band, but that is without a doubt one of the hardest parts of not being signed. 

How do you view the state of the music industry today?

I think this question is a bit sarcastically funny. The music industry today, is probably at its poorest state that it has ever been. The internet and Music Pirating is killing the industry. 10 years ago it was amazing for a major artist to sell 15 million copies of an album. Today it is amazing if a major artist to sell 1 million copies. This fact really just makes it harder for unsigned bands too. No label wants to invest in a talented artist anymore, only if they have 100,000 myspace friends and big numbers on iTunes. It just sucks…

What does your band hope to accomplish within the next year?

Well, we are going to be releasing a new EP before spring which is being tracked now. It will be titled “The Things We Hold Onto” and I am very excited for the world to hear it. I feel it is our best material yet.

Is your music available for purchase/download anywhere?

Our CD titled “We Were Contenders” is available for purchase at shows and on iTunes!

Audrey

Upon first listening to Audrey, you would never guess they have only been a band for less than a year. This Michigan quintet provides a mix of indie and pop-rock sensibilities with a do-it-yourself ethic that helps them stand out amongst their peers. Having released their first EP, When We Were Young, this past September (part one of a two part concept album), and opening for acts such as Mae and Deas Vail, they are definitely a band you want to get to know.

Corey from the band answered the following questions for us.

Who does the band consist of and what part do they have in the band?

Everett Parks on the microphone, Corey M. Bickford on guitar and piano, Jonathan Tibbitts on guitar, Shawn McMann on bass, and we’re currently in between drummers (Michael Greenbank is going to remain with us through February). 

How was the band formed and how long have you been a band?

Ev, John, and Corey were all in a band together for 2 1/2 years. After being broken up for a year or so, Corey contacted Everett and John to start up a completely new project. We had our friend Michael join as his band at the time was falling apart a bit, and we knew Shawn from his old band in which he played drums and tried him out on bass and he fit like a glove. The line up was completed as of February of 2009, so we’ve been a band for just under a year.

How did you come up with the name for the band?

Two traits we wanted this band to have at its forefront were beauty and a sense of elegance. That lead us to thinking about what we viewed as beautiful and elegant, which was Audrey Hepburn and Audrey Tautou, so we went with Audrey. 

How would you describe your music?

Always a hard question… a recent review said “Morrissey-meets-Jimmy Eat World,” and that was insanely flattering, so we’ll go with that, though it may set the bar a little high in my humble opinion.

What bands/artists have influenced you?

Mae and Deas Vail were the big ones when we were first starting up. We actually recently had a chance to open for both of those bands on Halloween, which was amazing. Since we started playing together, we’ve sort of broadened our influences to be a bit more individually specific. Between the five of us we draw influences from our very varying pasts… largely the late 90’s emo sound (i.e. Saves the Day, The Anniversary, and The Get Up Kids… that’s a big one) but also bands from all over the musical spectrum (Steely Dan to Incubus to The Beatles to Bayside and Bad Religion to Anberlin to… you get the idea). 

How would you describe the music scene in your area?

We’ve all been in the music scene for going on a decade. It’s wavering, really. Muskegon has one of the strongest, longest running punk scenes in the world (look into The Ice Pick… it’s a punk venue which has been running longer than CBGB’s). As of late, it’s on the up and up again. We’re a part of a label/collective known as 3358 Records which has been working for years now to truly rejuvenate and keep afloat the local music scene. A few of us are also personally involved with the operation of this label (Corey is one of the founders, in fact). 

What is the best experience you’ve had on tour?

If by tour, you mean the many out of town shows… it’s hard to say. We’ve met many, many amazing people.  A few stand out moments would include playing in Macomb, Illinois and meeting these people who were involved with giving ghost tours and hearing their stories. Cornerstone 2009 had some pretty fun moments, too. Also, playing up in Marquette, Michigan was a great time… there are some really loving people up there who just treated us very well. I’m not sure I feel right considering any lower penninsula shows “tour” but the east side of Michigan (Howell/Lansing) is home to many amazing friends of ours. 

What do you think is the biggest challenge of being a unsigned band/artist?

Money & time. All of our members are either full time college students or work full time jobs. Finding jobs in this economy (especially in Muskegon, which has among the highest unemployment rates in the country) that are willing to give you the necessary amount of time to play shows, record, tour, etc. is nearly impossible. As a result of this, paying to put out quality products, fund the band, and still be able to live… it’s difficult. Almost impossible, in fact. 

How do you view the state of the music industry today?

A big ol’ mess. I’m glad, though. I’m hoping it will kill of the rock-star dream and bring back the appreciation for the DIY/EIY ethic that we grew up on. There is nothing more I respect than a band/musician who is willing to sacrifice everything they have to play a basement show to 20 sweaty smelly kids who feel every word and note. 

What does your band hope to accomplish within the next year?

We’re going to be touring come this summer, and next fall we’re going to be putting out the second installment of our concept EP set. Also, hopefully we’ll have a van and a trailer… we’ve had the worst luck with that whole situation. We currently drive several cars (including my 1995 Ford Aspire which is the size of a shoe box) to our shows. I cannot express how many times we’ve had to pay to repair our cars from carrying all of our equipment between them. 

Is your music available for purchase/download anywhere?

audrey.bigcartel.comand of course at all of our shows. It will be on iTunes, Amazon, and some other stuff pretty soon, but it’s not right now.

Anything else you would like to add or acknowledge.

Check out our MySpace. MySpace is dying, but we’re still on there quite a bit. Check out every single thing in our Top Friends… everyone/everything on there is something worthwhile. Our friends and the bands we support are really a family to us, and we love to add members to our family… get to know us. 

Eagle Scout

Signed to Cavity Records, Eagle Scout create a unique blend of indie and post-punk music that is sure to please  your ears. These five gentleman from Illinois have spent the past year recording their first full length, New Hands, which will be released in February. You can hear a taste of their new songs at the band’s myspace and check out our interview with Kyle below.

Who does the band consist of and what part do they have in the band?
Jeremiah Clark - Moog Synthesizer/Tambourine/Yells
Kyle Collman - drums and yells
Ben Helman - guitar and vocals
Brandon Hunter - bass and lead vocals
Robert Varner - guitar and yells

How was the band formed and how long have you been a band?
Brandon, Ben, Kyle and Dan (original guitarist) met and formed the band in the Fall of 2006 as freshman at the same college. Shared similar tastes in music, got together and jammed and stuck with it. Shortly after, Jeremiah in on keys. After a year and a half and 2 guitarists, Robert ended up in the band! We’ve been playing for about 3 and a half years.

How did you come up with the name Eagle Scout?
We used to be called Cool Your Jets until about a hear and a half ago, when we were threatened by a band of the same name who apparently had it first. I don’t remember how this name was thrown into the mix of ideas, but it was the first one we all liked so we went with it. Robert had a this really good idea to call the band Machine Face but no one liked it. He still is making everyone pictures of themselves in Microsoft Paint though for Christmas presents. Man, we should really be nicer to him.

How would you describe your music?
We get a big variety of “you guys sound like..” so I don’t know how to even describe it since everyone is hearing it differently. But this is how Robert describes our music in our Reverbnation bio: driving danceable beats and bass lines, whirring analog synth sounds, and delay and reverb laden guitar lines, accompanied by satirical ecumenically and politically charged lyrics and group yells. That’s not exactly how the full-length came out sounding though. Obviously we all have different ideas and goals for where we want the music to go, so its really cool to be able to throw all our ideas together and see what comes out. It can be frustrating at times but writing new material last year was something that we really enjoyed doing. We hope that the next time we get a chance to record we will be able to spend more time working in the studio to give the songs more depth and studio personality so to speak. Its hard to capture a band’s “live sound” on an album but I don’t think that’s something that we are really aiming to do. Part of the fun of recording should be getting to do things that you can’t do live and the same applies to the live setting. Although we hope that the album captures some aspect of the intensity that we strive for on stage, we hope that it also shows a more creative and crisp aspect to our music as a result of the controls that we gained in the studio setting.

What bands/artists have influenced you?
We each have several influences expanding every genre that we bring to the table.

You’re signed to Cavity Records, how is that treating you?
Great! Dan and Jason are 2 rad dudes who we can’t thank enough for giving us a shot and helping us get our music out there. Everyone should check out the rest of the label’s roster because they’re all sick bands in different genres.

What do you find to be the biggest difference from being an unsigned band to being on a label?
Well basically it just helps validate our band in the eyes of people in the industry. It just helps us get on shows, get interviews, etc. It’s also a big help financially and Cavity is making connections for us, like, with Beartrap PR who’s going to help work our new record. More importantly though, we’ve been able to hang out with Dan and Jason and Dan’s dog Sabra and ride Dan’s motorcycle and chill at the Lumberjack Distribution warehouse, all of which have been sweet.

You’re currently working on a full length album. Where are you in that process and when do you expect it to be released?
We are about 9 months into this excruciatingly long process. We recorded a full-length with Matt Goldman (Cartel, Underoath, Copeland) in March and are finalizing artwork now. I think we’re looking at an early February release.

What is the best experience you’ve had on tour?
Just getting to hang out and pretend real life isn’t waiting for us back home and meeting awesome bands and people. I think house shows have made for the best times on our tours.

What does your band hope to accomplish within the next year?
Release our cd?! We hope for 2010 to be a big year for us. We’re going to try and get to as many places as possible this summer and start making a name for ourselves or something. I think we’ll start writing another record next fall? Until then hopefully play as many parties as we can and snack attack Brandon’s parent’s kitchen a lot.

Is your music available for purchase/download anywhere?
Our previous EP (Pandamonium!) is available on iTunes and all download avenues courtesy of Cavity Records. Our new record will also be up on the net and some major retailer’s websites. Hard copies will be available through Cavity Records webstore and our webstore and at shows!

Anything else you would like to add or acknowledge.

1) Don’t look too much into anything our band says or does because it probably doesn’t have any significance. We’re all just trying to have a good time here.
2) Thanks for the interview! Everyone should get stoked on Get Stoked!
3) Check out Cavity Records at www.cavityrecords.com and myspace.com/cavityrecordsistaken
4) Keep in touch with us and keep an eye out for the new album! myspace.com/eaglescoutmusic

Valet Parking

This week’s band once again comes from Long Island, NY(noticing a trend here?). Valet Parking play pop-punk/pop-rock that will have you singing along to every word. Having shared the stage with bands such as The Dangerous Summer and Rookie Of The Year, they put on an energetic live show that will leave you satisfied. Checkout their Blackout EP, as this is definitely a band to keep an eye on.

Matt from the band took some time to answer these questions.

Who does the band consist of and what part do they have in the band?
Matt Lagattuta - Vocals/ Guitar
Nick Ohrnberger - Vocals/ Guitar
Jerry Meehan - Bass/ Vocals
Cj Kostaras - Drums

How was the band formed and how long have you been a band?
I (Matt) formed the band with friends from junior high who are no
longer in the band.  We’ve been playing shows with the name Valet
Parking for like 5 years now.

How did you come up with the name for the band?
We were like 14 years old and our old drummer said, how about Valet
Parking.  I hated the name, but it was a 3 to 1 vote so we went with
it.  It’s funny we’ve always talked about changing the name but we
always had an excuse like, oh no we can’t change it we played our
first show, or no we can’t change it we just went on our first tour,
and now our newest Ep Blackout has started to really get us a fan base
so we’re really stuck with it now (i still hate it haha).

How would you describe your music?
I would say we’re a mature pop-punk band.  Not that bullshit pop-punk
with fake tans, live auto tune, and matching outfits.  We try to use
more than power chords and actually write lyrics that are personal to
us.

What bands/artists have influenced you?
I know everyone says this, but Blink-182.  They’re the band that got
this whole band into music.  For me, this underground punk band called
The Lawrence Arms, they really have some of the best lyrics in the
genre.

How would you describe the music scene in your area?
The Long Island music scene is good and bad.  I think band wise, the
scene is awesome.  There are some awesome local bands on Long Island
(Casari, Gabriel The Marine, Score 24, Kills and Thrills, Nice Guys
Finish First, and so many more).  When we play shows out of state
promoters speak so highly about bands from the area.  The scene is bad
because of the clubs in the area.  It’s really hard, especially for
younger bands to get on shows without having to sell tickets.  But the
club, Broadways, is under new management and is really awesome so that
helps.

What is the best experience you’ve had on tour?
I don’t know if this was the best, but it was probably the hardest
I’ve ever laughed.  We were stuck in traffic in jersey (damn you
jersey turnpike!!) and all of our ipods and laptops were dead, so
nick, the grandpa that he can be sometimes haha, put on sports talk
radio.  While we were listening to this occasionally Jerry would just
yell, “yeah if the yankees don’t win this week, I’m gonna rip out my
ball hair!”.  We were all dying so we convinced him to prank phone
call the radio station.  We actually got on air (we said we were Ted
from Queens) and right as he was about to declare ripping his ball
hair out, they cut him off.  We we’re so close!

What do you think is the biggest challenge of being a unsigned band/artist?
Booking a tour by yourself.  Myspace is best and worst thing to happen
to music.  Venues and promoters probably get hundreds of messages a
day from bands, why should they read yours? You know?  It’s hard for
us still for areas we haven’t been to yet.

How do you view the state of the music industry today?
Kind of crappy.  They need to find a new way to get music to fans, and
get them not to illegally download it.

What does your band hope to accomplish within the next year?
To get the band to the next level, we’re working on new songs right
now that I think is really gonna blow people away.

Is your music available for purchase/download anywhere?
Our Ep Blackout is on I-tunes right now, and we’re always selling a
physical copy on tour and at shows.  We also have a new demo up for
listening on www.myspace.com/valetparking

Anything else you would like to add or acknowledge.
Please check us out and spread the word!  Drop us a comment, were
friendly and always respond!

Sleep Bellum Sonno

Creating their own blend of post punk, indie based music, this Long Island trio is sure to grasp your attention. Sleep Bellum Sonno put an effort into their music that is lost with a lot of other bands today, and this is clearly present in their latest release Judge Us By How We Lived Our Lives Not By How We Made Our Living.

Adam took some time to answer these questions for us.

Who does the band consist of and what part do they have in the band?

The band consists of Jeff Ramirez on bass, Justin Calendar on drums, and myself, Adam Tomlinson, on guitar. Jeff and I, share lead vocal duties but we all contribute to the writing process

How was the band formed and how long have you been a band?

The band was formed officially in 2004, so it’s been about five and half years.  Things really took shape in 2004, but before I came along, the band played instrumentally with a few other members, so it was like a singer without a band meets a band without a singer, and everything just meshed really well. The get together was spurred on by our original guitarist, Jon and I reuniting at a church camp, years after not being in contact. So I stopped by with my guitar and played a couple songs, and they showed me their songs, and I was completely taken back, I knew I had to make it happen on my end.  And that is that I suppose, throw in a few member changes, and trials and tribulations and we are just about up to date.

How did you come up with the name for the band?

I believe our name came about when either Jeff or Jon came up with it after a rigorous process of brainstorming over a period of weeks. I honestly don’t recall where it came from. We just all took to it very quick. The name means Sleep, War, Sleep, in english, latin and italian. It’s an idea that really carries over every aspect of our lives. 

How would you describe your music?

I would describe our music as well thought out, lyrically heavy, and dynamic. As far as a genre goes, well, it’s for you to decide.

What bands/artists have influenced you?

I know everybody’s always weary on wearing their influences on their sleeves, and I can’t really speak for everybody, but a few may be, On The Might Of Princes, The Casket Lottery and Cursive. This influence is either due to something great and original found in the music or just the footprints these bands have left for us to follow.

What is the best experience you’ve had on tour?

Best tour experience?? Hmm. Personally, one of the most unforgettable experiences was the kindness showed to us at this place called Taranto’s Pizza Barn in Ohio. We played outside of the restaurant, and It went fairly well, I for one not being a real fan of playing outside. We played our set, watched the other bands, sold some merch, and hung out a bit. Typical night. That’s when we decide to call it a night and leave, we asked if it was okay to park the van in the lot and crash there for the night. To our surprise, the owner hooked us up with hotel room up the road at the marriott or something. It’s got to be one of the nicest things ever done to us. Gotta love the midwest! 

What do you think is the biggest challenge of being a unsigned band?

 I think the biggest challenge of being an unsigned artist is trying to get people to come to shows, or playing shows that don’t have an audience. Let’s face it, people love what’s convenient and going out to a venue and shelling out ten bucks is not. We have overcome this somewhat, through cheap basement shows and the like. There’s nothing like playing for even a relatively small audience, when you know they are there to listen. Means the world to me.

How do you view the state of the music industry today?

The music industry today, is mending. I think digital music caught everyone a bit off guard. And we all definitely need to embrace the change and take advantage of its sharing power.  It is a great promotional tool. I’m very excited about the very definite return of vinyl as a relevant format. 

What does your band hope to accomplish within the next year?

Our band will tour more than ever this year, and try to cover as much ground as possible. Throughout we plan on releasing a few different spits and 7’s and/or maybe an EP. Need to keep the current music coming. And maybe release another full length sometime 2011. 

Is your music available for purchase/download anywhere?

Our new album can be purchased in most all digital formats like Itunes and Amazon. While physical units of our current 12’ full length record/cd and previous album can be purchased directly through our website at www.sleepbellumsonno.com.

Anything else you would like to add or acknowledge.

We appreciate you taking the time to listen! Thanks!