Get Stoked Proves It’s Just As Talented As Its Bigger Named Pop Punk Counterparts On Its New EP

 

Courtesy: Imminence Records/Persistent Heart Media

Courtesy: Imminence Records/Persistent Heart Media

Mount Pleasant, Michigan’s five-piece pop-punk band Get Stoked will release its new EP this month. Washington Street, the band’s new EP, will be released Tuesday, August 19th via indie label Imminence Records. This four-track disc is a good fit for anyone that is into bands such as A Day To Remember, All Time Low, and Yellowcard just to name a few. It’s interesting to note that among the EP’s five tracks, its opener is one of its best tracks. It’s interesting in that the song in question is an instrumental track that lasts not even two minutes. That song leads straight into what is another good example of audiences can expect from this EP in the form of ‘Actions Speak Louder Than Words.’ This song’s title *ahem* speaks for itself. Audiences will understand in listening to the song’s lyrical content. And as a final example of what the band has to offer on its new EP, it also offers the song ‘Forward Progress,’ which is a welcome breath of fresh air after the more emotional songs that preceded it. Each one of the songs profiled here is by itself a solid pop-punk production. The songs in question combine with the other two songs not noted here to make for an EP that any pop-punk fan will find enjoyable.

Get Stoked opens its new EP with an instrumental that is simply considered the album’s ‘Intro.’ The song clocks in at not even two minutes long. To be more precise, it is only one minute and thirty-eight seconds long. Ironically enough, as short as the song is, it proves in the long run to be one of the best songs on the disc. It’s one of those songs that proves not every good song rock or otherwise needs lyrics to make it work. It would be just as easy to hear front man Cameron Wheeler singing alongside his band mates. But they—Jacob Cardona (drums), Ryan Turek (guitar/backing vocals), Ben Jensen (bass), and Zach Smith (guitar)—hold their own throughout this song’s ninety-second plus song. Cardona’s time keeping is spot on next to the work of Turek, Jensen, and Smith. For a band that is currently signed to an independent label, this introduction from the band shows that its sound is Just as solid as anything released by any of its bigger named counterparts. And that solid sound doesn’t stop here, either as audiences will note in Washington Street’s first full length song, ‘Actions Speak Louder Than Words.’

‘Actions Speak Louder Than Words’ is one more example of how easily Get Stoked stacks up against its bigger name pop punk counterparts. The song, which seems to center on personal relationships is the first chance for [Cameron] Wheeler to put his talents on display on this release. To be more exact, it comes across as being centered on a personal relationship with a former love interest. He goes so far as to make a commentary about all the men that the woman in question had slept with. This leads him to sing to her, asking, “What did you expect/We’ve all tried our best/And if you didn’t succeed/You blame it all on me/These cold winter nights/They leave me quiet and discreet/Who are you to tell me/Who I can and can’t be/When first we barely knew each other/But lately/I bet I’ve come to find out/What it is you’re looking for/And I can’t understand it/I won’t understand it/Until you explain it to me.” It is from here that Wheeler and company proceed to sing about the former love interest sleeping around with other men. And that leads everything full circle back to these opening verses, making them far clearer for listeners. Wheeler’s subject here is expressing the mix of emotions felt by someone who is dealing with an unfaithful partner. That lyrical theme alongside the song’s energy and sound makes the song whole and just one reason that pop punk fans will appreciate this record.

While Wheeler and his band mates delve into some emotional territory on Washington Street, there is also at least one song with a more positive outlook on things on the EP’s penultimate song. That song, ‘Forward Progress,’ exhibits a subject that has gone through the worst but still sees the proverbial light at the end of the tunnel. That is something rare in today’s music industry. It seems like so many songs, regardless of genre, focus mainly on breakups and other negative topics. Wheeler sings in this song, “This is a thing called forward progress/I hope you know that I could care less/This is a thing called forward progress/I hope you know that I could care less/Face clenched/And arms bent/I’ll march through this/With only intent to make who/I wanna be/A realistic vision of myself/And everyone around me.” The defiant stance taken in these final verses gives a completely different view of life in comparison to the songs that come before ‘Forward Progress.’ And they make the song’s title far more fitting, too. It is Wheeler and company saying collectively, “I am going to be who I want to be no matter what others think of me.” This is an important message for the band’s audiences, especially in this age. Together with the previously noted songs and those not noted here, Get Stoked present to audiences an EP that is a work that is just as solid as anything released by its bigger named pop-punk counterparts.

Audiences can hear Get Stoked live now as the band is currently on tour with Backslashes and Bad Ideas. Audiences will also be able to pick up Washington Street at the band’s live shows after it is officially released. More information on Get Stoked, its tour schedule and more is available via the band’s official Facebook page. To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to the Phil’s Picks Facebook page and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog, too.

Phinehas’ New EP Good For New Fans And Old

Courtesy:  Red Cord Records

Courtesy: Red Cord Records

Phinehas will release its new EP, The Bridge Between next Tuesday, January 22nd.  The band’s new EP is a collection of songs from two of its previous releases, thegodmachine (2011) and The Phinehas EP (2009).  For fans that are new to this band, the best way to describe it is to imagine taking the best elements of As I Lay Dying, Killswitch Engage, and Shadows Fall, and mixing them together in a giant musical mixing pot.  The band’s vocalist, Sean McCullough is right up there with the likes of Brain Fair (Shadows Fall) and Tim Lambesis (As I Lay Dying).  Guitarist Jason Combs’ chops could easily be compared to the work of guitarists from the aforementioned bands.  And drummer and bassist Lee Humerian and Bryce Kelley respectively hold their own throughout all seven of the tracks compiled for this latest release from the La Mirada, CA based Christian metallers.

What’s most intriguing about this collection of previously released songs is that it shows that just as the band is capable within the realm of the fast, technical metalcore style sound, it is just as capable playing slower, more emotional music, too.  The EP’s first three tracks are a nonstop metal assault, opening solidly with the song, ‘Panhammer.’  The band wastes little time getting its audiences moving here with guitars and drums that instantly kick things into gear.  The way that drummer Lee Humerian and guitarist Jason Combs combine their talents will have audiences on their feet and pumping their fists from the song’s very first seconds.  And they barely let up if at all from there.  Musically, fans will be on their feet without stopping throughout the EP’s first three tracks.  The second half of the EP however, will have the exact opposite impact.  It shows the band’s deeper, more introspective side.  There are even points at which [Sean] McCullough even sounds like Corey Taylor (Stone Sour, Slipknot) in ‘Enkindler.’  And the subtlety of Combs’ guitar underneath McCullough’s vocals adds to the song’s power.  Jeff Darcy at Relic Recording brought that combination of sounds to life.  He shows that he has quite the ear in managing to balance the combination even in an acoustic song.  He is definitely to be commended for that.

There’s no doubt that the songs included on Phinehas’ new EP will impress audiences of both the band and of the “Christian Metal” and metalcore genres.  Longtime fans will largely be getting songs from the band’s previous releases in this new release.  Though the band’s acoustic takes on its previously released songs give an interesting new perspective on the songs.  That being the case, it makes an especially good start for anyone who is new to the music of Phinehas.  The songs noted here are just portions of what the band offers on its new EP.  Audiences will get the chance to hear the entire record for themselves next Tuesday, January 22nd courtesy of Red Cord Records.  Audiences will also have the chance to hear the band live as it will be performing a handful of shows beginning January 20th in Salt Lake City, Utah.  To get a full listing of performance dates, audiences can check out the band online at http://www.facebook.com/Phinehasrock and http://phinehas.us.  Fans can also follow the band on Twitter at http://twitter.com/phinehasband

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It Lies Within Streaming New Single Online

It Lies Within is one of the hardest rocking acts of 2012.  The band’s new album, “Chrysalis” will be available tomorrow, Tuesday, September 4th.  In anticipation of the album’s release the band is now streaming its single, ‘Thoughts of Neveah” online.  fans can go to Altpress.com now to hear it.  Just follow the link here to check it out:  http://www.altpress.com/features/entry/song_premiere_it_lies_within_thoughts_of_nevaeh

 

Courtesy: Luxor Records/Persistent Heart Media/Infamous Empire

 

The band has a tour set up in support of “Chrysalis.”  It will be performing this Friday, September 7th at The Attic in kettering, Ohio.  Friday’s performance will be followed up by a performance this Saturday, September 8th at the Summit County Fairgrounds in Tallmadge, Ohio.  Fans can get a full tour rundown on the band’s Facebook page, http://www.facebook.com/itlieswithin, on its official website, http://www.itlieswithin.com, and via its Twitter page, http://twitter.com/itlieswithin.

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Elenora Another Good Addition To The Post-Hardcore Scene

Courtesy: Persistent Heart Media/Indianola Records

When one thinks of the Pacific Northwest, one doesn’t typically associate that area of the country with the likes of Oregon’s own Elenora.  But with the release of its new five-track E.P., “Avant Garde”, Elenora could become one of the bands to put that section of the country back on the musical map.

The EP’s opening song, ‘Bedfellows’ is a solid melodic post hardcore song that walks the line of screamo/emo just enough that it makes the song commercially viable.  This song is comparable to work from the likes of Fall Out Boy and Set It Off.  The addition of the keyboards in this song is just subtle enough to work.  It adds a certain extra touch that makes the song that much better.  ‘Rome Is Where The Art Is’ is another example of how the band is able to effectively balance its two sounds.  The way that it builds into the heavier sound at the end makes for what is one of the EP’s best tracks.

That balance comes back into play on ‘An Open Book’ as the song moves from adrenaline fueled guitars and vocals to the gentility of the keyboard part in the break back to the guitar driven portion in the song’s second half is a good build on the song.  ‘Star Crossed Lovers’ closes out “Avant Garde.”  It continues the feel built throughout the previous four songs on the EP.  It’s just as solid as those tracks.  All combined, the five tracks on this EP make for a record that any fan of the post-hardcore/screamo-emo scene will enjoy.  The EP is available online now at http://elenora.bigcartel.com/product/avant-garde-ep-preorder-album-out-august-10.  For more information on Elenora, fans can go online to http://www.facebook.com/elenoramusic, http://www.phmrecords.com, and http://www.facebook.com/PersistentHeartMedia.

To keep up with the latest entertainment reviews and news, go to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it or its companion page, http://www.facebook.com/pages/Reel-Reviews/381028148587141.  Fans can always keep up with the latest entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.