Sunday, August 12, 2007

Adam of Big City Lights

Lauren talked to Adam (bass) of Big City Lights who are from Long Island, New York to get up-to-date on where this Pop/Rock band is at and where they are headed. Along with our own questions, we enlisted a couple fans to help us out by submitting their own.

SSM: Who is this and what do you do in the band?
Adam: My name is Adam and I play bass.

SSM: A lot of bands don’t like to explain the meaning behind their lyrics. They would rather the listener come up with their own explanation. Are you all the same? Is there a song you don’t mind discussing the lyrics too?

Adam: I think Justin would be the best person to answer that question being that he writes the lyrics, so save this question for a possible future interview cause its a good one.

SSM: What are your future plans for the band? Any tours or albums?

Adam: Right now we're just writing as much as we can and once these new songs are done we're gonna start demo'ing them as well as re-recording the 4 songs on our myspace. Then once we have a good amount of solid demos we feel are good enough to show people we'll be giving them to some people we've been speaking with and we'll see where it goes from there. As far as touring goes we can't wait to get on the road, all we wanna do right now is get on the road as soon as possible. Plus all the comments and messages we get everyday of people asking us to come play their cities make us even more anxious to get out there. So don't worry everyone, we will be touring as soon as we can and can't wait to play for all of your beautiful faces.

SSM: We all know the question about having three wishes. But if they all had to deal with the band in some way, what would they be?

Adam: I think our main wish is that we can be successful and do this band for the rest of our lives.

SSM: What is your idea of being a successful band?

Adam: My personal idea of being successful is that we can put out the best music that we can possibly write and that people love it just as much as we do if not more, and be able to financially support myself by doing so.

SSM: If you had to describe your music in one word, what would it be?

Adam: Delicioussssssssss

SSM: How did you come up with the name Big City Lights?

Adam: Justin just one day thought of it on his own, we all liked it and said that has to be the name.

SSM: What’s the meaning behind your myspace headline: CHANCE.LUCK.FATE.DESTINY?
Adam: It's actually the name of an old Perfect Endings song, which is the band we were all in a few years ago, and we just all just really like the title and feel that each word represents something special to us.

Now, it’s time for some of the fan submitted questions. Thanks so much Taylor and Sarah!

Taylor: Would you rather lose all of your pictures on your computer, or all of your music?

Adam: I'd go with pictures because getting all the music back onto my computer would take a lot longer then getting pictures back.

Sarah: What’s the biggest difference from having a band when you were 16 than when you are 20?

Adam: There’s really not much of a difference as far as enjoyment and motivation and the sheer joy of being in a band. The only difference is that now we're more mature and take the band a lot more serious because it's something we wanna do for the rest of our lives, as opposed to when we were younger and it was just about playing as many shows as possible.

This next question is apparently an inside joke…

Sarah: What do you think about Canada?

Adam: Well obviously Sarah asked this question, but we love Canada and would love to tour there someday.

Taylor: What’s the craziest fan moment you’ve experienced thus far?

Adam: There’s a group of girls from Georgia that have been raising money to buy us a van (or a bus as they call it). We had never spoken with them before or even asked them to do so for that matter. They just left us a comment one day and said they want us to come to Georgia so bad that they'll buy us a van, in exchange for a pony.

By: Lauren and Ashley

Monday, August 6, 2007

Review: The City's Finest

Their E.P. titled Its a Physical Addiction is made up of songs that definitely cover the more theatrical side of music. The second track Operetta VII has a Nightmare before Christmas feel in the beginning and at various other moments throughout the song.
Their last song called What’s to Keep Me from Keeping You? starts out slow and begins to build up as the song goes on. It’s a fitting end to the E.P. with lyrics such as “This is our time.” The songs on this E.P. remind me of a more mature Panic! At the Disco at times, with the dramatic vocals and music. But rest assured, they are definitely doing their own thing, and I see the band reaching new heights with their album that is in the works. By: Lauren

Saturday, August 4, 2007

A Letter From The Editors

Finally, the first issue is out! It feels like its been forever since we started planning and working on this and now it's out. Hopefully everyone will enjoy reading it as much as we enjoyed putting it all together. Everyone working on this zine loves music. We want to promote and support anyone and everyone we can, especially the bands we love and feel deserve a lot more recognition. This is just the first issue, and we hope to have many more in the future, so keep letting us know who you want to see! Thanks for all the enthusiasm and support we've had so far and for any we may get in the future. We really do appreciate all the interest. Now, read on to see what some of the others working on this zine have to say!
Thanks again, Lauren

Shooting Stars Magazine. Where we all wish for big things. Great name, very appropriate, in my opinion. All of the people who work on the magazine have many wishes for it, the bands featured, and the readers. We wish for you to find out about new bands and learn new things about your favorites. We wish for the bands to reach a new audience, especially smaller bands that not a lot of people have heard of. We wish for those smaller bands to be heard! And most of all, we wish for the magazine to be a medium for people to use to share their love of music, whether those people play the music, write about the music, or listen to the music.
Best of wishes,

The idea of this magazine has been very wonderful. Not only can you get to learn some information about some bands, but it might even make you want to widen your music library. It includes interviews, reviews, and things like that. People should keep reading this magazine because they will most likely get to see some stuff that they haven’t seen in other magazines. Hopefully, people get to enjoy this magazine as much as possible.

I've been a huge fan of AP magazine for about a year now, but I've realized through that year, I've lost interest in it because it doesn't really show the other side of bands that are trying to make it. It just shows bands that have already made it. I like this magazine because it's different than what’s out there and will be something that you don't have to waste your money on. This magazine is existing because great music that's not heard as often is existing.

I wear my heart on my sleeves, and i'm very passionate about my life, especially the music in it. I feel like if its so important to me, and it influences me, I need to share it. and that is what I think this is
for; for the group of us to share our experiences, and influences with
people to enlighten their lives. yes, it's uber cheezy, but it's true.<3

Ryan Hunter from Envy on The Coast

Keaton caught up with Envy On The Coast's lead singer, Ryan Hunter on their first headlining tour. Despite being on voice rest, he was able to tell us via hiptop a bit about himself as a musician, and Envy's upcoming release, Lucy Gray, which hits the shelves on August 7th.

Keaton: Your first full length album, Lucy Gray comes out August 7th. What should fans expect, and how would you describe Lucy Gray in comparison to the EP?

Ryan: We all feel that we've made huge strides as musicans, people, and song writers and judging from the feedback we've received thus far, it really shows on the new record. There's a lot of really personal stuff within the skeleton of this record.

Keaton: How does it feel to have kids singing along during your shows?

Ryan: It's heartwarming. You spend your time pouring every ounce of yourself into something and it's really nice to see that other people share it with you.

Keaton: I know that there had been some not so great press about you guys. how do you deal with negative feedback?

Ryan: I nervously laugh at it. I won't lie and tell you I brush it off easily. I'm a really insecure person who takes things personally. Fortunately I have Brian, who is unbelievably talented and ripping those people to shreds in more ways than one.

Keaton: You guys do a lot of touring. Where is your favorite place to play, who are favorite bands to play with, and is there any performance of yours that you feel was the best?

Ryan: It's too hard to narrow it down to one answer for each of those questions. I love coming home to Long Island and playing there. Other favorite cities...probably Seattle, San Francisco, Providence. Favorite bands would be the Dear Hunter, Circa Survive, Hit the Lights, The Sleeping...there's too many to list.

Keaton: Why did you ditch the camo hat?I mean it has its own myspace and everything.
Ryan: because people had trouble finding me.

Keaton: Before Envy On The Coast you were Writ In Water. Writ In Water had a song called Envy On The Coastline. Did that song mean something special that caused the bands name to change?

Ryan: It was more the aesthetic value of the name that initially attracted us to the name. The song was about a particular band that I developed a jealousy for ironically enough.

Keaton: Besides the release, what does the future hold for Envy On The Coast as a band, and you as a musician?

Ryan: Tour forever. Make records till we drop dead.

Keaton: there was some rumour about dan (I think) leaving the band...what was with that?

Ryan: Haha yeah I don't know who started that...but he didn't find it funny. We did though.

Keaton: What is your favorite lyric...that you wrote?

Ryan: Hmmmmmm. that's way too hard to narrow down. It would definitely be from a tune of the new record.

Keaton: You always have some inspirational thing to say, so what advice do you have for all those aspiring musicians out there?

Ryan: Keep playing and always play from the heart. That's going to sound cheesy now...but one day you'll find yourself in a predicament and you'll understand how important it is to keep that in mind.

Keaton: do you conisder yourself a rockstar? Has rockstardom changed you, or your outlook on life?

Ryan: Definitely the farthest possible thing from a rockstar. This life has definitely changed me however.

Keaton: Where did the title Lucy Gray come from?

Ryan: Look it up. Do some research...tell me what you find and try to figure out who she was. then come to me and we'll have a super long conversation about what you think it means. Peace.

Danny Smith of The City Drive

Lauren and Ashley came up with some questions for Danny Smith (vocals, guitar, piano) of The City Drive about touring, their new E.P., writing, and more. The City Drive are based out of Los Angeles, California and have released an album titled Always Moving, Never Stopping and their Egocentral E.P. You can catch them at a couple stops on this years Warped Tour in California at the end of August. Check their myspace for those dates and more!

SSM:For the record, can you state your name(s) and what you do in the band?

Danny: Danny Smith, lead singer/guitar/piano.

SSM: You all have toured with a lot of different bands. Is there a tour or band(s) that you specifically loved? If you could tour with anyone again or for the first time, who would it be?

Danny: We toured with Firescape (featuring Josh Partington from Something Corporate) at the end of 2006 and into 2007 and we partied a lot. I have many great memories from that tour and I really love all those guys. Unfortunately, they broke up, so it probably won't happen again. In the future, I'd love to tour with Radiohead.

SSM:While you all are on tour, who in the band would you say is the messiest? Are there any neat freaks in the band?

Danny: I consider our van a member of the band and he is always a mess! I am certainly the annoying neat freak and anyone who knows me would agree.

SSM:Runner was remixed by The Secret Handshake for your Egocentral E.P. How did this come about and why did you pick that particular song? If you could have any of your other songs remixed, who would you like to do it and what song(s)?

Danny: We had played with them before and had some mutual friends. I love the job they did Runner, a song we offered them to remix. It has become one of my favorite songs. I'd like to see Spaceless remixed by Nigel Godrich & Thom Yorke.

SSM:Danny, some of your poetry was published in the book Revolution on Canvas. How did you decide which ones you would include? If you ever had the chance, do you think you would like to release a book of just your own work?

Danny: I submitted over a dozen works and the publishing company chose which ones to include. Out of the three pieces they published over the two volumes, they unwittingly chose two older song lyrics of mine, which I find kind of interesting. I have plans to someday release a humor collection which features works by dozens of friends and has already been compiled. It's waiting for a publisher. I also dream of releasing a book of my paintings and drawings as well as a book of my tour photos. I really hope all of that happens someday...

SSM: I must say you all do a really good job on keeping in touch with your fans, whether through myspace, email, or in person. Is this an important aspect for the band? Any crazy and/or nice memories you have involving a fan?

Danny: It's very important to us and we'll continue to keep in touch for as long as we can. We got lots of crazy emails and lots of nice emails. We appreciate all of them. Keep writing and leaving Myspace comments!

SSM: Are you all currently working on any new songs? What are your plans for a second album?

Danny: We're currently rehearsing and recording demos for new the songs. I've written about 30 good ones, so we'll see which ones wind up on the second full-length album. I'm really excited about the new stuff which is very different from Always Moving Never Stopping. Our Egocentral EP hints at where we're headed.

SSM: You have a few video blogs and a podcast on your myspace page. Are you going to continue with any of these? If so, what can people expect from them?

Danny: Yes. Marc and I will be doing more podcasts in some crazy locations. We've talked about doing one at Dodger Stadium during a game. I'm also in the middle of editing a video for Behind Closed Doors, a song from our Egocentral EP. It'll be on our Myspace after we play Warped Tour at the end of August. Stay tuned...

-By Lauren & Ashley

The Academy Is...Live

This is what it feels like to see The Academy Is...

I've had SANTI since a week before it came out. I've listened to it on occasion, but it just never had that feeling that Almost Here did; that indescribable force that provokes every emotion, causing me to sit in front of iTunes and cry my heart out.
On July 12th, I got to see Billy Beckett and company open for WBRU's Summer Concert Series at Providence Pier in Providence, Rhode Island.
The band came out on stage, and I got that butterflies feeling that has become less frequent and more of a treat as the number of shows I attend increases. They opened their set with the Phrase That Pays, and pumped up the crowd to follow up with a SANTI release, LAX to O'Hare. The entire set was upbeat, and exciting, flip flopping from Almost Here tracks to SANTI ones. Even if my Santi lyrics were a bit rough, William, Sisky, The Butcher, Mike and Michael delivered an amazing performance, and totally won me over, SANTI style. They finished up with Almost Here, a real treat that gave me, along with every other person there goose bumps, and finally the original Checkmarks.
I have been to 60 shows in my wee lifetime of 15 years, and never have I yelled the lyrics to a song so loudly that I could literally feel my veins popping out of my neck as the man with the sexiest hip bones out there sang, staring directly into my eyes. It was my third and most memorable time seeing the ever amazing The Academy Is..., and I'd recommend their show to anyone and everyone, but most importantly people who were unimpressed by their albums. They deliver an incredible performance every time, positively hooking every viewer in the crowd to every lyric, note and beat issued from their stage. On top of it all, the show was a mere 6 bucks!

--By Keaton

To Sum it Up: The Remorse Code

If you have ever wanted to be the one to say, “I knew the band when…” then don’t waste another minute and check out this up-and-coming band. I’m sure you will feel no remorse in doing so!!

The Remorse Code first formed in October of 2006. They reside in Rhode Island and the current members are Matt (vocals, lyrics, guitar), Josh (lead guitar), and Nick (drums). There is no bassist at the moment, but they are in search of one. If you asked the band what genre they saw themselves under, they would say “strictly rock, subgenres included.”

Ever since they formed, they have been practicing and recording. They have been in the studio twice now and finished three songs this last time. These songs should be out in August. The first demos can be heard on their myspace: The band has said to have taken longer on these songs than the previous ones and Josh says the songs “still have the same feel but they are different in a good way. If you like the songs up now you will surely like what’s to come.”

Once all six of the songs are out, they are planning on playing their first shows this fall in Rhode Island.
So go and support them!!!!

-By Lauren

Scott Waldman of Lido Beach

Lauren talked to Scott Waldman, formerly of The City Drive, about his new project Lido Beach. As a fairly new band, with Scott as the only official member at the present time, they have already played shows with bands such as Sound the Alarm, Tokyo Rose, and Goodbye Valentine. You can purchase a Lido Beach t-shirt and a c.d. featuring 3 songs titled Raw Acoustic on now. Keep your eyes on this band, for I'm sure they'll just keep blowing up!!!

SSM: Can you state your name and what you do in the band?

Scott: Scott Waldman. I sing and play guitar.

SSM: How did the lineup come to be?

Scott: The lineup is not permanent yet. I am currently the only "official" member of LIDO BEACH but I am looking to change that soon. I've known Scott Seader (lead guitar) for 22 years, I've lived in a van with Brian Weber for one month, I've had Souplantation and Indian food with Jason Young at least once a week for the past year and Adam Miller's family knows how to cook amazing food!

SSM:What are some of the bands’ influences?
Scott: Here are seven: The Beatles, Nirvana, Silverchair, Jimmy Eat World,The Who, Weezer and Kara's Flowers!

SSM:After only a few days of putting up the myspace, you have a street team formed for the band. What was that like to first see it? Anything else a fan has said or done that you think deserves mention?

Scott:BEYOND THRILLING. Every ounce of support from every person who has even HEARD of LIDO BEACH has made each day better and better. THANK YOU! THANK YOU!

SSM:When you do get around to recording an album, are you going to put all new songs on it or re-record some of the ones that are on your myspace?

Scott:The songs on our myspace are ALL really raw and old. We definitely plan on re-recording ALL of them soon. Some will be acoustic but most will be FULL BAND! Get excited.

SSM:You posted a blog on your page about a cause that helps people with cancer. People can check that out here: Can you tell us a bit about it? Why do you think people should get involved with this?

Scott: People should get involved with this for obvious reasons. My friend Emily Herman is an amazing gal. Check out her page!

-By Lauren & Ashley

Tour Talk: The Dangerous Summer

SSM: Can you state your name and what you do in the band?


Aj - Vocals and Bass
Cody - Guitar
Bryan - Guitar
Tyler - Drums

SSM: What was one of the best shows you've ever played? And since shows don't always go well, what was one of the worst?

TDS: Hah well the best one was probably our first one or the one we got to play with with All Time Low/Hit The Lights it was sold out and in our hometown and it was just a really good show, the worst would have to be in NYC we played at this really small place called "Fat Baby" no one was there and it smelled horrible, oh yeah and we sucked haha.

SSM: While on tour, who in the band is the messiest? Any neat freaks in the band?

TDS: Bryan is a mess hahah he leaves his clothes everywhere and it drives me (cody the cleanfreak) nuts.

SSM: If you could tour to anywhere in the world, where would it be and why?

TDS: Its always been my dream to tour Australia, it seems so happy down there.

SSM: Beyond playing shows, what else do you love about being on the road?

TDS:There arent as many worries, and you realize you can live without the internet, it makes life simple again.

-By Lauren

Review: Mayday Parade- A Lesson In Romantics

Mayday Parade's full length release, A Lesson In Romantics, is THE release i have been looking forward to for months now. It was most definitely worth the wait. This album will be the soundtrack to your summer, with its catchy vocal contrast between Derek and Jeremy. It’s the story of a hopeless romantic who has his heart broken time and time again, and has to watch every girl he loves walk away from him. From the more mainstream, Black Cat to the heart wrenching Miserable at Best, each song (minus a dried up redo of When I Get Home You're So Dead) posses its own pizzazz that is going to get Mayday Parade the recognition and popularity they deserve. This is the best album I have heard since Boys Like Girls' release last summer, and look at them now, on the Billboard Top 100 in less than a year.

-By Keaton

Down Time: Bands Don't Just Rock Out!

listening to: slayer, wu-tang clan, paramore, gwar, saves the day, moneen, bleeding through, bullet for my valentine, the used, minus the bear

reading: nelson mandela's long walk to freedom
watching: jackass, die hard, the hills have eyes

Eric Victorino of Strata

reading: 'the end of faith' by sam harris and 'on writing' by stephen king...

listening to: antony and the johnsons and new modest mouse.

Alex of Just Surrender
"Right now I'm reading books on the universe, haha, listening to Braid, and watching the history channel"

listening to antony and the johnsons and new modest mouse.

Alex of Just Surrender
"right now i'm reading books on the universe haha
listening to braid
watching the history channel."

-By Braxton