Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Posted By on Tue, Apr 30, 2013 at 11:30 AM

  • Courtesy, Transplants

Punk giants Rancid and Transplants have announced a show at the Rialto Theatre this summer on July 23 after announcing the release of the Transplants' forthcoming record, In A Warzone, set to drop on June 25.

Tim Armstrong, who fronts both bands, will play both sets at each show, backed by Blink-182's Travis Barker, who is the original drummer for Transplants.

The Tucson stop is one of many scheduled across during a summer tour across the U.S. While the Transplants record is the only one set for release, Rancid announced in February that they too are recording their next album, expected to be released later this year.

More information on tickets for the show will come with the Rialto's announcement.

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Monday, April 29, 2013

Posted By on Mon, Apr 29, 2013 at 5:15 PM

  • Courtesy, Constellation Records

The Rialto Theatre recently announced a rather eclectic set of upcoming shows, spanning rap, folk and post-rock.

Geto Boys will make a stop in Tucson on June 11 as part of a scattered tour around the U.S. The iconic rap trio hasn't released a new record since 2005, but has continued to play smaller shows and festivals throughout the country. Anyone who shows up with a fax machine and baseball bat will likely be turned away at the door.

On June 20, Arkansas folk native Iris DeMent will drop by before hopping the pond to play an extensive European tour. The country folk veteran is touring to promote October's Sing the Delta, DeMent's first original record since 1996.

A performance by the post-rock instrumental group Godspeed You! Black Emperor will round out the summer on Sept. 16. The Montreal nine-piece will hit a few shows in Europe before a brief tour in the U.S. THe band is promoting ALLELUJAH! DON'T BEND! ASCEND!, their latest record that dropped in October last year.

Tickets to all three shows will go on sale this Friday. Tickets can be picked up at the Rialto's website when they go up.

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Posted By on Mon, Apr 29, 2013 at 3:27 PM

We feel like we found the candy house at the end of the breadcrumb trail. It's called Alarma : nine solo tracks revealing a side of Sergio Mendoza we never knew. Not only is it not big-band cumbia, it's not the blue jazz Mendoza started out playing before that fateful night he and his band performed a Perez Prado song at The Great Cover Up.

Jim Blackwood, who mastered the Alarma tracks, made the big reveal today by playing the track "Prison Cell" on his KXCI morning show Your Morning Brew The entire set is just 25 and a half minutes long. Mendoza plays all the instruments.

Mendoza says he created the tracks for a CD he sold on tour with Calexico. He's out of them, now, but plans to make more. Meanwhile, these tracks aren't downloadable, but you can listen all day long.


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Sunday, April 28, 2013

Posted By on Sun, Apr 28, 2013 at 5:00 PM


From 6 to 10 p.m., and most likely a little later, you can take in some great bands for a good reason. Whiskey Tango,140 S Kolb Road, hosts a benefit for AmoSphere drummer James Hunt, who was recently diagnosed with inoperable pancreatic cancer.

Hunt's news arrived around the same time his mother passed away. To get home, AmoSphere held a fundraiser for their drummer at a Chicago Bar gig on Friday, April 12. Band leader AmoChip Dabney told the Range that fundraiser raised about $3,000 to send their friend home and help pay for Hunt's mother's funeral expenses.

The fundraiser tonight is for Hunt's medical treatment with one goal in mind — helping the drummer with med expenses that can possibly shrink his tumor, which is preventing Hunt from being able to have surgery. The goal tonight is $7,000.

Thirteen bands are scheduled to play tonight including AmoSphere, known for getting a crowd on the dance floor. Other bands include Neon Prophet, Crosscut Saw, Railbirdz, Bryan Dean Trio, Corey Spector, Nod Squad, Top Dead Center, AC Greenlaw and Lodestar, Midnight Blues Band, Tall Paul Band, Chilli Willi, Heart to Heart, comic Dan Wilkins, belly dancers and more.

"We plan to squeeze out every dollar like a Jerry Lewis Telethon thing," Dabney said. "What's wonderful is that the bar is open until 2 a.m., so we'll be playing into the night. I think the even will easily run until 11:30 (p.m.)."

Dabney added that the number of bands who stepped forward to help out didn't surprise him. First, "Tucson is a very empathetic city."

"But James is also a very loved friend and musician. He's a good guy and one of the top six drummers in town and people really just like the guy."

Dabney said he Hunt began playing together around 2004. His drummer at the time had passed away, and he asked Hunt if he wanted to play with him. "He wasn't playing around that much. That sure changed once we started playing together. A lot of bands would have him. He's a profession and a great person."

AmoSphere plays a variety of music — reggae, blues, rock and zydeco. Dabney said Hunt's experience was obvious from the beginning as he easily moved from style to style.

While Hunt is unable to keep working while receiving treatment, he still wants to play with the band as much as possible. "He said to me, 'It's one of the very few things I have left that I really enjoy.'" So, a few drummers are read to give him breaks as needed, and Dabney said he's happy to keep his friend playing with them as long as Hunt wants to be at every gig.

Can't make it to the show tonight? Would be a shame, but there's the James Hunt Fund accessed through a PayPal account. It's posted on Dabney's web page, but only accessed by Dabney's partner.

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Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Posted By on Tue, Apr 23, 2013 at 12:50 PM

The completely independent release of Macklemore and Ryan Lewis' The Heist was one of the biggest surprises of last year, debuting near the top of the Billboard charts in its first week of release, topping the iTunes charts and recently went Gold — and it's honestly my favorite record of the last year or so, just edging out Murs & Fashawn's This Generation.

The video below, "Can't Hold Us," is the best tune on the album, in my opinion — and it's somehow been stretched into a seven-minute short film that includes skydiving, a pirate ship, a man getting a haircut on the beach, a huge party or two, and a giant damn flag that was actually flown atop Seattle's Space Needle.

It's kinda cool. Give it a look.

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Friday, April 19, 2013

Posted By on Fri, Apr 19, 2013 at 10:00 AM

Photo from Flickr Creative Commons by Josh Llyod
  • Photo from Flickr Creative Commons by Josh Llyod

With Country Thunder 2013 wrapping up a mere few days ago, tickets have already gone on sale on Tuesday for next year's Country Thunder for $99.

Filled with cowboy boots, flannel shirts and a hefty supply of beer, Country Thunder 2014 is set in Florence, Ariz. from April 10 to 13.

I understand buying tickets far in advance when you know it is a concert you really want to attend, but the lineup isn't even up yet. I guess the country loving two-steppers have faith that their favorite musicians will be in attendance next year — or that they're counting on having the same good ol' time that they did at this year's edition.

The price of the four-day general admission pass that is now on sale will only continue to go up as the year goes on and the event gets closer. By Nov. 14, the pass will cost $120; at the gate, it will be up to $220.

This year's event reached its maximum capacity this year for the first time ever in its 20 year existence. There were 25,000 people and 5,100 occupied campsites, making the event a sellout.

For more information on Country Thunder 2014, including tickets and camping information, click here.

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Thursday, April 18, 2013

Posted By on Thu, Apr 18, 2013 at 4:55 PM

I’ll continue to reserve judgement on Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby until it’s released on May 10, but if the film has 1/100 of the staying power of its highly anticipated soundtrack, it may be well worth the (seemingly never-ending) wait.

You can watch a preview above - released Tuesday - featuring 30-second clips of 12 songs from the soundtrack. Produced by Jay-Z, the project is shaping up to be an impressive reimagining of the book’s timeless popularity, juxtaposing the jazz-inspired sounds of the Roaring Twenties era with the music (and on more than one occasion, the lyrics) of some of the most influential acts in the industry today, among them Jack White, will.i.am, Lana del Rey and the late Amy Winehouse.

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Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Posted By on Wed, Apr 17, 2013 at 1:30 PM

After announcing their tour last week with A Rocket to the Moon, Brighten, and This Century, the Phoenix band The Maine released their new song and tour dates, with two stops in Arizona.

The 8123 North America Tour will kick off on June 4 in Phoenix at a location to be announced. The band will wrap up the tour on July 26 in Tucson at The Rock.

You can now pre-order the 12 song new CD, titled "Forever Halloween," to be released on June 4 on the 8123 website for $9.99. You can also order a CD bundle that includes a ticket to a show on the tour for $17.99, which is limited to 25 tickets per show.

Stream the band's new song, "Happy," on YouTube below. It is now available for purchase on iTunes.

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Posted By on Wed, Apr 17, 2013 at 9:32 AM

Jimmy Eat World, the rock band from Mesa that formed in 1993, released a new single last week titled "I Will Steal You Back."

The song is off their seventh studio album, "Damage," which comes out June 11.

Along with their new song and album, the band has also announced a "Home-State" tour throughout Arizona, beginning on May 3.

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Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Posted By on Tue, Apr 16, 2013 at 3:30 PM


Empty beer cans, flashing for beads and chugging whiskey out of the bottle pretty much sums up the 20th annual Country Thunder Festival in Florence, Ariz — at least, from what I saw.

The festival consisted of four days of nonstop drinking, two-stepping and listening to live music from smaller country artists and headliners, such as Toby Keith and Eric Church, alike.

Sean Caldwell who experienced his first Country Thunder this weekend hit it on the head: "There's so many trashy girls here!"

People play games from beer pong to dizzy bat, finding new and strange ways to make new friends and keep drinking. Cruising in the back of a truck isn't unusual — neither is watching people jump in next to you, despite not knowing whose truck they just jumped in.

While being drunk for more than 12 hours straight is what many people who attend Country Thunder experience, it's definitely not what everyone's weekend is like. Families attend the festival as well and enjoy camping out, barbecuing and dancing at the campgrounds and in the venue.

Gilbert Ochoa from Tucson said he was most looking forward to watching Toby Keith since he didn't get to see him while on base in Afghanistan.

"It's a lot of fun and you meet a lot of great people at events like this," Ochoa said.

Everything becomes a dance floor at Country Thunder, from the roof of an RV to the road and any part of the dirt lot venue where people enjoy the live music.

"I like how ... they have like a carnival type area with food and ... the dance floor," said Rachelle Linn. "It's just a very fun atmosphere."

Vince Thomas from Glendale has been going to Country Thunder for four years and said he enjoys partying with friends and watching the performances.

"I think they do a great job out here," Thomas said. "I think they got it down the best they can to make everybody happy."

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