January 20, 2011

William Tyler – Tompkins Square – 8.6

Every genre has its icons and its iconoclasts. Rock’n’roll will likely always have both bands that sound like Led Zeppelin and bands that absorbed Led Zeppelin but marched proudly in an unforeseen direction. Country music has chicken grease-and-cheap beer adherents in addition to pop crossover darlings, while rap brims with boom-bap purists and backpacking sonic explorers. These divisions are rarely as evident or amusing as they are in the world of guitar instrumentalists, a realm where either John Fahey is some sanctified combination of Zeus, Athena, and Poseidon or the brilliant dude who has become annoying because he’s the only touchstone most people have. You either fully embrace Fahey– like, say, the late Jack Rose— or you run the other way, like Ben Chasny with his work as Six Organs of Admittance. A middle ground exists, certainly, but it’s rarely been claimed with the grace and elocution of Behold the Spirit, the debut from young Nashville guitarist William Tyler. Arguably the most vital, energized album by an American solo guitarist in a decade or more, it accepts Fahey’s legacy while escaping its shadow. Moreover, it’s simply a joy to hear

For entire feature:  http://pitchfork.com/reviews/albums/14999-behold-the-spirit/

On tour with Yo La Tengo:


William Tyler – Behold The Spirit (TSQ2424/894807002424/C12) available now



January 7, 2011


Rock musician Duff McKagan shares his passion for sports, music and more in a new weekly sports column in the “ESPN Music” section on ESPN.com. The founding member of GUNS N’ ROSES and current bands VELVET REVOLVER and LOADED debuted his first column on Wednesday, sharing with ESPN.com readers a little bit about himself, his fandom for his hometown teams in Seattle and more. An excerpt follows below.

“My name is Duff McKagan, and I play rock and roll music. The beer on ‘The Simpsons’ show was named after me, and not the other way around. (I suppose it is a testament to how much alcohol I used to drink. Yeah, not too sexy, really.) A couple of years ago, I was offered a weekly column for Playboy.com and Seattle Weekly after goofing around in several other publications with an article ‘here’ and an article ‘there’; it is now supposed that I am a writer to some degree.

“I have two bands at the moment: VELVET REVOLVER and LOADED. Some of you may remember me from GUNS N’ ROSES. I wish I remembered more from then …. Ha!

“I have played my music in most of our major league sports’ venues (football stadiums, basketball and hockey arenas). As a result, I was able to get all of the ‘behind the scenes’ vistas of these venues that most of us only wonder about. Pretty kick-ass. A whole lot of sports teams use my old band’s song ‘Welcome To The Jungle’ as their war cry. This fact alone could have probably sated some of you sports fans’ ‘Why him?’ inquiry. Honestly though, I am a huge sports fan myself, and am glad and honored to be given a bit of a pulpit here to voice some of my opinions and insights.”

Check out the entire debut column at ESPN.com.

DUFF MCKAGAN”S LOADED – New album available soon!


January 7, 2011

   Sarah Jaffe On Best Of 2010 Lists from USA Today’s Pop Candy, to Paste Magazine, and beyond! 


Pop Candy’s 100 People of 2010: Nos. 25-49

 49. Sarah Jaffe. The Texas-based singer-songwriter burst forth with Suburban Nature, a sharp and sweet debut. If her career keeps growing, her nature just might become more urbanized …


The 10 Best New Solo Artists of 2010

3. Sarah Jaffe
Hometown: Denton, Texas
Album: Suburban Nature
For Fans Of: Rachael Yamagata, Sam Phillips, Katie Herzig

“I love Texas,” says Sarah Jaffe, “but it’s pretty it is what it is.’” The 23-year-old singer/songwriter (whose last name rhymes with “taffy”) is at a mall in her hometown, on break from touring and killing time before she catches a movie. “I grew up in a place that was pretty much boring. It was brown and flat, but I think that humbleness is very attractive….”



The 50 Best Albums of 2010

39. Sarah Jaffe: Suburban Nature [Kirtland]

Sarah Jaffe is a lot like her home state of Texas. Wide-open, humble and matter-of-fact, she crafts beautiful, raw songs that “are what they are” in the very best way. Playing like wise, witty diary entries marked with teardrops, growing pains and effusive honesty, her debut album, Suburban Nature, ebbs and flows on a sea of candid relationship narratives. “Love is interesting, because when two people come together that way, it can be really hostile and beautiful at the same time,” she says of the inspiration for the album’s 13 songs, some of which were written before Jaffe graduated from high school.—Melanie Gomez


The 50 Best Songs of 2010

During the last 12 months, these 50 songs from 50 different artists brought us or joy or enveloped our sadness. These are the melodies that stayed stuck in our heads, the words that spoke to us, even if it simply was with a vitriolic epithet that somehow still made us grin ear-to-ear, as was the case with our #1 song of the year. Some of these were radio hits, but most either made their mark on the Internet or among those few who heard them. In our humble opinion, here are the 50 Best Songs of 2010:



 The Best Albums of 2010


Sarah Jaffe was the ONLY artist to have 2 songs included in Amazon’s Top 100 songs

Best of 2010 Listeners’ Poll Results



Best of 2010 Listeners’ Poll Results



Best Local Releases: 2010

The Best Songs in Dallas Music, 2010: Sarah Jaffe Reaches Her Potential, and “Clementine” Is The Best Song of the Year.

From an outsider’s perspective, Sarah Jaffe’s success in 2010 would seem like a pretty surprising, rather overnight thing.Some local girl with a guitar releases her debut album? She gets attention from NPR and USA Today? She tours as an opener for Midlake and — wow, really? — Norah Jones? And now she’s selling out the Granada Theater?

It’s crazy things like that happen!

Well, except that those paying attention know another story. They see the girl who released her debut EP, Even Born Again, back in 2008. The one who won three awards in our reader-voted Dallas Observer Music Awards that year. And who won another three in 2009, bringing her to six total awards (and no defeats) heading into this year, when, at age 24, Kirtland Records released her full-length debut, Suburban Nature, and Jaffe again swept the DOMAs, this time bringing home six awards, and making her one of the most-decorated winners our awards have ever seen, but also the sole nominee to have never lost an award to another artist. People clearly see something special in her music…


Counting Down the Best Local Albums of 2010

1. Sarah Jaffe

Suburban Nature

(Kirtland Records)

It seems as if the entire region had been waiting years for this, the full-length debut from the most promising singer-songwriter North Texas has spawned in recent memory. And Sarah Jaffe’s Suburban Nature hardly disappointed.

If anything, it surpassed expectations, having almost instantly thrust Jaffe to the very top of the local music heap.

Propelled by lead single “Clementine,” Suburban Nature has earned Jaffe countless accolades from regional and national outlets alike in 2010, and deservedly so. Smartly arranged to highlight both the delicate folk-rock instrumentation and the vulnerability of Jaffe’s vocals, the disc is a shockingly intimate listen.

It’s almost too private for comfort at points, actually. And maybe that’s why it’s so enticing a listen. Throughout the album, Jaffe emotionally belts out her tales of heartache and uncertainty with an enviable, reckless abandon and willfully entrusts her audience with her vulnerability. It’s a bold move that would be unwelcome if its presentation weren’t so tender and, more important, relatable.

Jaffe, it turns out, isn’t different from anyone. And that’s  what makes her and, in turn, Suburban Nature, so unique. It’s a disc for everyone. It just so happens that Jaffe is behind it.


#8  Sarah Jaffe will break your heart—and break big.

Sarah Jaffe was mostly local when 2010 began. She had earned positive notice from the likes of NPR and Rolling Stone, but she was still largely a Dallas-Denton-Fort Worth sensation, known for her big voice and big-screen take on folk. Many musicians never move past that point. Then Jaffe went on a European tour with Denton’s Midlake. And opened a string of amphitheater dates for Norah Jones back in the States. And released her debut full-length, Suburban Nature, to widespread acclaim. And went on her first headlining tour—or “first time playing last,” as she says. And then another…


  Best Local Releases: 2010
The Top 20 Local Music Videos of 2010
Listomania: The 15 Best Concerts of 2010
11. Sarah Jaffe at the Granada Theater
Why: This September show felt like a coming out party for Jaffe — much bigger than her CD release show back in May, which drew Jaffe about a quarter of the crowd size she drew to this sold-out affair. And, between the debut of her “Clementine” music video and her sparse, encore cover of Radiohead’s “Creep,” Jaffe made sure her fans left feeling as if they’d seen something special. Which, of course, they had.
Excerpt from review: “There still remain a sign or two of her youth and inexperience — like when, just a few songs in to her headlining slot at the Granada Theater on Saturday night, Sarah Jaffe excused herself from the audience so that she could go grab a guitar strap she’d left backstage. But those were but minor quibbles. Because, as she’s been doing all year, the 24-year-old Jaffe continued to prove herself quite the pro on Saturday night. ”
The 20 Things You Need to Know For 2011

Lucinda Breeding: Denton’s best of 2010


Suburban Nature by Sarah Jaffe

Kirtland Records

Many of Denton’s fast-rising indie artists have made best-of-2010 lists in big-name publications — both in print and online.

Sarah Jaffe more than earned her spot on those lists.

This year, at age 24, Jaffe released her debut album to warm critical reception. She toured with Norah Jones and packed the house at Dan’s Silverleaf for her showcase concert at the North by 35 Music Conferette — which has changed to 35 Conferette in 2011….


 My favorite songs of 2010, and my favorite non-2010 songs of 2010

 2010 Favorites, part one: 2010 releases

Sarah Jaffe, “Clementine”

Sarah Jaffe’s Suburban Nature reminds me of Haley Bonar’s Big Star: accessible but nuanced, a twilight-tinged folk-pop album that you can listen to dozens of times.




 30 Albums of 2010



SARAH JAFFE – SUBURBAN NATURE (KR49/186535004925/FM) Available Now!



January 7, 2011

CHICKENFOOT, the rock supergroup featuring former VAN HALEN singer Sammy Hagar and bassist Michael Anthony, guitarist Joe Satriani and RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS drummer Chad Smith, will guest on the nationally syndicated radio show “Rockline” with host Bob Coburn on Wednesday, January 12 at 8:30 p.m. PT / 11:30 p.m. ET. Fans are encouraged to speak with CHICKENFOOT by calling 1-800-344-ROCK (7625).

For more information, visit RocklineRadio.com.

Chickenfoot – Chickenfoot (20091/674797200914/JSS) available now!


December 23, 2010

Rob Halford Celebrates Sobriety as Final Judas Priest Tour Approaches

Posted on Dec 16th 2010 1:00PM by Jon Wiederhorn

The news is out. The beast from Birmingham is reaching the end of the line. Judas Priest, one of the most important and influential British heavy metal bands — and the group that arguably redefined metal, introducing twin guitar harmony leads and chugging, uptempo riffs after the plodding doom of Black Sabbath — are embarking on their final tour.

But that doesn’t mean the group’s 59-year-old frontman Rob Halford is calling it quits. Quite the contrary, after Priest finish their last worldwide trek, Halford will keep guns blazing with his solo band Halford, with which he’s currently on tour with Ozzy Osbourne. In a Dec. 7 interview with the Dallas Morning News, Halford said, “We tried to create with Priest a really entrenching, varied, exciting heavy metal band. By definition we’ve always called ourselves a heavy metal band, but we’ve done many, many things in our music. The legacy of Judas Priest is the songs that we’ve made. It’s been a fantastic journey for 40 years.”

Noisecreep talked to Halford a week or so prior to the announcement of the final Judas Priest tour, and while there was no direct discussion about ending Priest’s reign, there was plenty of talk about keeping the flame of metal alight. During our conversation, Halford talked about the endurance of bands like Black Sabbath and Judas Priest, the creation of ‘Made of Metal,’ his continuing battle to stay sober, growing older gracefully and the world’s obsession with trash pop culture.

You’re on tour with Ozzy Osbourne right now. Did that come out of the shows you did on the last Ozzfest?

Well, when we were on the Ozzfest tour, the day before my birthday I said to Ozzy, “You know, I’m 59 tomorrow.” And he said, “Wow, we old ‘uns have got to stick together.” And we, of course, have. It’s a lot of fun going out with him. He’s absolutely on top of his game again. He’s roaring. His voice and physical performance is sensational. I can’t wait now to see if he’s going to get together again with Sabbath.

Sabbath and Priest have that Rolling Stones vibe. We could keep going forever if we wanted to. Unless you decide to put the brakes on there’s no end in sight. Band looks good, band sounds good, band plays good. Where’s the problem? There isn’t one. The only reason you keep doing it is because you believe in it and you’re having a great time doing it. If you don’t have those feelings anymore, forget it.

Being chosen for Ozzfest motivated you to start writing songs for ‘Made of Metal.’ Was that an enjoyable process or did you feel under the gun?

I decided that if I was going to tour, I wanted to have some new songs. The bulk of the material on this album came from my own head, and I haven’t done that since the Fight album ‘War of Words’ in 1992. That was very satisfying.

Was there something going on in your life that was making you feel creative?

As a musician, you can’t control these things. When they happen to you, they just take over your body and your head and it can be pretty scary. You’ve got to get them down quickly. I wrote those songs in about two weeks. And that reminds me of something Elton John once said. He said if I can’t write a song in about 20 minutes, then I just leave it because it’s not going to happen.

So, you wrote a bunch of songs by yourself. What was the next step?

I took them to [producer and co-writer] Roy Z, and he listened to them and said, “These sound good, bro. Once these are recorded, there are gonna be great.”


How do you write. Do you use a digital recorder or Pro Tools or something?

No, I just scratch ideas into the recorder in my iPhone. I would come home, and most days I’d be inspired and the ideas would be flowing. Everything came quickly, and we didn’t spend a tremendous amount of time in the studio sessions.

How important is it to work with your writing and performing team?

It’s extremely important. Some guys just use any studio musicians. I’ve always felt that I work best with the people that are close to me. And the best things happen when it’s a team effort. That’s why Priest worked so well for so many years and so many great albums.

You said you banged out ‘Made of Metal’ quickly. Was that the intent or were you under a tight deadline?

It was just coming together so quickly, I didn’t want to stop the train. I didn’t give myself the time to tear something apart and accidentally sabotage it. So I didn’t second guess myself. I just pushed away the negativity that all musicians go through. It’s just that ethos that we have from being fragile, which is what all creativity is. It can all fall to pieces like a big glass bowl.

The lyrics on ‘Made of Metal’ are bold and exude confidence and strength. But at the same time, some of the express a certain vulnerability.

I had a blast with the lyrics. How can I possibly write a song about bullfighting without getting egg in my face. But again, if you look at what I’ve done over the years, whether it’s been ‘The Ripper’ or ‘The Nightcrawler’ or ‘The Painkiller,’ that’s my world. I just love to have fun with this imagery. What inspired me was I saw the running of the bulls on CNN for about four seconds, and that was the catalyst for the song ‘Matador.’ But there’s all sorts of stuff on there.

The song ’25’ is about sobriety.

It’s a pretty personal song. I’ve been clean and sober for 25 years next year, actually. I wanted to make a reference to that without it being maudlin. I didn’t want anyone to slit their wrists at the end of it, but I wanted to send a message about how I’m still getting through it and it’s f—ing difficult. It really is.

Even after 25 years of sobriety, you still crave alcohol?

Absolutely. It’s just second nature to grab a beer, but that would just be the end of everything. So I have to constantly check myself. 25 years is nothing. It’s irrelevant. It’s gone. Boom. It’s about what’s happening now, and that’s the philosophy that people like myself have to live with. You’re living in the moment and in the day. Just because you got through 25 years, that’s absolutely immaterial. After 25 years, I’ve still got to face these fears of slipping, and I’ve had the devil on my back. And the devil on my back is booze and drugs.

Chung Sung-Jun, Getty Images

What’s the closest you’ve come to slipping?

Well I’ve never yet picked up a bottle [laughs]. But for the last tour with Ozzfest, I decided I’m gonna save some money and we’re all gonna go on a bus together, band and crew. Oh god, big mistake! They drink everything in sight. I’ve never seen anything like it. It was like Mötley Crüe all over again, but without the drugs. It was unbelievable. I love them to death, but they’d be f—ing drinking from the moment we got on the bus until seven or eight o’clock in the morning, just rioting.

And I thought, “This is about as close to putting your feet in the fire as I’ll ever do, and I’m not doing it again.” I saved a bit of cash, but never again. The devil was sitting there on one shoulder saying, “Go on, just have a drink. You’ll be OK. Go on, go on, go on.” And the angel on my other shoulder’s going, “No no, stay away.” There are millions of people who have been through what I’ve been through that can smile at that and see the serious side of it as well.

You’re a metal icon and a celebrity even beyond the metal domain. Do you keep on top of pop culture and enjoy the mainstream press?

Oh, I’m an Associated Press news hound. I’ve got it in my iPhone and I check it three or four times a day. I keep on top of the stories, but not in a malicious way. For example, that Lindsay Lohan’s situation is sad. She’s got a great talent and she’s going through the difficulty that we’ve seen other personalities like myself deal with. It’s like I say in ’25 Years,’ you’ve gotta go as far down as you can go and not go any further before you can look up and start crawling up the hole. She’s beautiful and she’s got a great talent, and she needs to get it all back together again, which hopefully she will.

Why do so many celebrities invite tabloid publicity? Even Miley Cyrus is going without wearing panties and getting into limos while the paparazzi aim for that valuable crotch shot. It’s kind of amusing, but also pathetic.

These people ask for some of the bad press through their own stupidity, and some of them are just naïve. And of course, some of it is believing in yourself too much, so you become this untouchable god. You always need a sense of being able to listen to somebody else’s advice — even if it’s something that you dismiss. You should always be prepared to listen to what somebody has got to say and have somebody you trust, like family or management. Nobody has all the answers.


HALFORD – HALFORD IV – MADE OF METAL (MGE8077192/879337801604/C13) Available NOw!


December 23, 2010

Arriving Stateside via Eagle Rock entertainment on February 2nd is the latest heavy metal/rock n roll masterpiece from Russia’s PUSHKING!!!

These guys have put together a great album of their most famous tuneage along with some incredible special guests, this is the perfect post holiday gift for the metal head in you or your special Valentine, check out the attached video featuring ZZ Top’s Billy F Gibbons and Extreme’s Nuno Bettencourt….

 Pushking “It’ll be O.K.” video! (ZZ Top’s Billy Gibbons feat Nuno & “Pushking”)


 “The World As We Love It”, the new album from the Russian group Pushking, features songs sung by Paul Stanley (KISS), Billy F. Gibbons (ZZ Top), Alice Cooper, Glenn Hughes (Deep Purple), Joe Lynn Turner (Rainbow), Eric Martin (Mr.Big), Jeff Scott Soto (Journey), John Lawton (UriahHeep), Graham Bonnet (Rainbow, Alcatrazz), UDO (Accept), Dan McCafferty (Nazareth) and Jorn Lande (Masterplan).A number of the world’s highly regarded guitar players contributed as well, including Steve Stevens (Billy Idol), Steve Vai, Joe Bonamassa, Nuno Bettencourt, Steve Lukather, Keri Kelli and more!

 Pushking – The World As We Love It ( ARM250542/826992505428/C13) Available  2/1/11


December 23, 2010

Blackmore’s Night

Featured artist playlist – 12/22
2.5 million unique monthly visitors

Songs for Winter: An Exclusive Playlist by Blackmore’s Night
by MOG Mixes on December 21, 2010

Avg Rating 5.0 (2 ratings)
 While former Deep Purple and Rainbow guitarist Ritchie Blackmore and wife Candice Night claim that they find their inspiration from the fantasy realm, you might argue that Blackmore’s Night have a thing for seasons as well. After unleashing the Christmas-themed ‘Winter’s Carol’ in 2006, the Renaissance-influenced folk duo are namechecking the seasons yet again with ‘Autumn Sky,’ their upcoming January 18th release on Spinefarm Records. While the album is on the way, Blackmore’s Night still have winter on their minds in the meantime, which is why the duo gave us this killer exclusive playlist to usher in the season, featuring a mix of holiday tunes, Jethro Tull, and everything in between.

Blackmore’s Night – Autumn Sky ( FONINT1376/602527501376/C14) available 1/18/11!!