20 Watts

Scene Around Town: Anberlin at Syracuse’s The Lost Horizon by 20watts

anberlin concert2

Stephen Christian and drummer Nathan Young

PREVIEW: VISIT Anberlin’s Website.
PREVIOUS: 20 WATTS COVERAGE Editor’s Pick #209: Anberlin

In the middle of their set, Anberlin lead singer Stephen Christian told the crowd that their Sunday night performance happened to be on an off date from their All-American Rejects, Taking Back Sunday tour. While the crowd was clamoring for more, Christian told the crowd that at first he wasn’t sure if they should just take the day off to rest, or come to Syracuse’s Lost Horizon and play a show. The band settled on the later and Christian, with a huge smile on his face, told the crowd, “We made the right decision.”

The night started off rather slow with Oh No Not Stereo and Sparks the Rescue turning in less than memorable performances. Vinnie Caruana, the frontman of I Am the Avalanche, was the third performer to hit the stage. His acoustic performance was heartfelt, but it didn’t fit with the other bands pop-rock sensibilities.

Next up, There for Tomorrow delivered their energetic, clean cut, pop songs to a crowd that was waiting to do a little dancing. Small mosh pits broke out during their set which showed that these guys have a lot of potential.

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Editor’s Pick #209: Anberlin by 20watts

Anberlin's aggressive pop songs have rocked crowds all over the world.

PREVIEW: VISIT Anberlin’s MySpace

This Sunday, the five piece pop-rock act known as Anberlin will be headlining Syracuse’s The Lost Horizon. Since their 2002 formation the band has steadily become more and more popular. Both 2003’s Blueprints for the Black Market and 2005’s Never Take Friendship Personal showed that the band had tremendous potential. On February 20, 2007 Cites was released and it debuted at number 19 on the Billboard 200 music chart.

During 2007 Anberlin headlined a major US tour supported by Bayside, made music videos for “Godspeed” and “The Unwinding Cable Car” and signed with major label Universal Republic Records. Their latest album, New Surrender, was released in September 2008 and it peaked at number 13 on the Billboard 200 music chart.  New Surrender’s lead single “The Feel Good Drag” was all over rock radio stations, and the band is currently supporting The All American Rejects and Taking Back Sunday on tour.  So, if you like Anberlin, go to their show on Sunday, and come back to 20 Watts this Monday to check out our review of their performance at The Lost Horizon.

— Eric Hoffman, Features Editor

20 Watts Reviews Weezer’s Raditude by jluposello

Weezer's Raditude is scheduled to drop on November 3rd.

PREVIEW: VISIT Weezer’s MySpace
WE GIVE IT: 14/20 Watts

When Billboard announced in November 2008 that alt-rock legends Weezer would be entering the studio to record their seventh studio release, the band’s fan base was immediately abuzz with anticipation, and with good reason. Frontman Rivers Cuomo was bringing back old friend Jacknife Lee, who had produced the Red Album’s Billboard topping single “Pork and Beans”. The album had beginnings as another notable addition to Weezer’s already impressive catalogue. Now, almost a year later, we can finally see the results.

Raditude, which derives its name from a suggestion to Rivers by close friend Rainn Wilson (aka Dwight from the Office), is a classic Weezer party album in every sense of the term. All too obvious is the fact that Rivers decided to take this album much more in the direction of contemporary pop, which will be the aspect that will make or break the album for most listeners. Most of the tracks lack the depth and inspiration of some of Weezer’s earlier albums (see The Blue Album and Pinkerton), and will undoubtedly hail some criticism from fans of those albums. Continue reading

News of Note: Weezer Collaborate with The All-American Rejects, Yeah Yeah Yeahs Release an iTunes Orginals Session, Devendra Banhart Streams New Album What Will Be, Animal Collective Support PETA, and MORE by jluposello
Weezer just finished a collaboration with All American Rejects for upcoming album Raditude

Weezer just finished a collaboration with Nick Wheeler and Tyson Ritter of The All-American Rejects for upcoming album Raditude

Keeping with the collaborative theme of their new album, Weezer frontman Rivers Cuomo has recently finished up a track for Weez’s new album, Raditude, featuring Tyson Ritter and Nick Wheeler of The All-American Rejects. The song, entitled “Put Me Back Together,” follows Weez’s collaboration with Lil’ Wayne, “Can’t Stop Partying.” Ritter told RS, “I was playing Weezer songs when I was 13 at parties, so now I can die happy.” Look for the track when the album drops on November 3rd.

It’s about time that we got an iTunes Originals session from New York’s garage-punk rockers, Yeah Yeah YeahsPitchfork gives us a look at the details of today’s release, which include studio tracks, interview clips, and unreleased acoustic versions of some of YYY’s most well known tracks. Check it out here.

Devendra Banhart’s seventh release, What Will Be, is set to drop from Warner Bros. Records on October 27th. Both Banhart and Band of Bees’ Paul Butler have dually produced the record, reports Stereogum. He has reportedly reenlisted the band that played behind him on 2007’s Smokey Rolls Down Thunder Canyon: Noah Georgeson, Greg Rogove, Luckey Remington and Rodrigo Amarante. Fans that can’t wait the week for this highly anticipated freak-folk release can stream it now here (you can thank us later).

Staying true to their namesake, Animal Collective has just stepped up with PETA to protest Canada’s aptly named annual “Seal Slaughter.” The slaughter is responsible for the death of thousands of seals annually (60,000 in 2009), and celebrities such as Perez Hilton and the guys from AnCo have begun passionately speaking against the practice, reports Pitchfork. Check out the video, where Geologist eloquently states, “We all really like animals and seals, especially.” We like your enthusiasm, Geo.

Nashville’s indie rockers Kings of Leon will be releasing their most recent concert footage on DVD, reports Pitchfork. The release, entitled Live at the O2 London, England documents a June 2009 show. Look for its release on November 10th and on November 24th in Blu-Ray.

— John Luposello

20 Watts Reviews Nightmare of You’s Infomaniac by JohnCassillo

Nightmare of You's sophomore release is greatly disappointing

Nightmare of You's sophomore release is greatly disappointing

PREVIEW: Download Nightmare of You’s “Please Don’t Answer Me” MP3
WE GIVE IT: 10/20 Watts

There were always a few revered acts in the Long Island scene in high school. One of these bands, The Movielife, helped shape trends and decide who was the next big thing. After their breakup, its members joined or started other groups, one of which was Nightmare of You. After their self-titled debut in 2005, they were the new “it” band, with accolades from Yahoo! Music and mtvU. A lot can change in four years.

From the onset, it’s obvious that Nightmare of You decided to embrace a bigger, more radio play-friendly sound on their sophomore effort, Infomaniac. Bright pop sounds evocative of The Strokes, and bouncy piano parts are just a few of the changes as the band 180s their demeanor altogether. Maybe it’s just a product of the band getting older, but the edge seen prominently just a few years back is a distant memory, and not necessarily for the better. The trade-off is memorable hooks for the band’s past identity. Continue reading