Tonight in Los Angeles. I’ve been gone for three years but now I’m back, for less than a week, working on my new record “Freaked Out American Loser.” But that is almost besides the point of this blog post because tonight I’m doing a “B2B” tag team DJ set with my old friend and Thunder Zone collaborator… The one and only SCHWARZ, at his party CLUB ILLUSION. Expect the unexpected. Also djing is Kreayshawn and P. Morris. Talk about a nice bill! More info here. Keep on fighting to change your life.
Next week, I will be going on a four city mini-tour with my old friends EXTREME ANIMALS aka Jacob Ciocci and David Wightman. I have a long history with these two, lets just say we met when I was still in high school and they were on a PAPER RAD tour. I traded them some TROLLS for a bunch of legendary FREE MERCH. Over a decade later and everything has changed, everything is fucked, the world is fucked, my life is fucked, but we all keep going. Because rock and roll needs us, the game needs us. Fuck all the bullshit. The real lifers know. I’m just trying to find a little bit of meaning and freak out.
Why this tour, why now? Well, I’m putting out an Extreme Animals anthology on my fucking confusing-but-sick label THUNDER ZONE and we are hitting the road to celebrate. More on that release very soon. Four days, four cities, a bunch of great bands (Angels In America, Gobby, Flintstones and Val M. aka Unicorn Hard-On to name but a few) one car, one van, THOM FROM SWEATHEART on guitar with me, MIKE B THE G (AKA CITIBIKE MIKE also known as D. Gookin) on drums. Yeah, I got the band. You gotta keep running, kids. RIP ALAN VEGA. I’m losing my mind. See you on the road. Tour dates below.
7/28 PHILADELPHIA @ Lava Space Facebook
7/29 QUEENS NEW YORK CITY @ Trans-Pecos Facebook
7/30 PROVIDENCE @ Tommy’s Place Facebook
7/31 BOSTON @ Gross Outlet Facebook
Got a sick lil Heartland mini-tour rager on deck, as always I am happy to play shows and live life. If I wasn’t truly siked I would’ve stopped doing this dumbass shit a long time ago. That is a goddamn fact. Word to the wise: if you want to go through this world with no compromise you are going to hit a lot of brick walls, but fuck it, that’s what it’s all about. What do you want me to do? Start a hardware-only techno project?
Anyways… Playing an extremely intimate early 8 p.m. show at the legendary Circle A (“A Real Adventure”) in Milwaukee on Thursday, June 16 with Queen Tut then a show the next day at Eagles Club in Minneapolis with Frankie Teardrop and more. It is the last Frankie Teardrop show ever! Should be one for the books. This little run is capped off with a festie show in Horicon, Wisconsin. It’s the Jersey Street Music Festival.
I hope to see all you kids out there, in the pit, just doing the best to stay alive. Go get a soda, you gotta do what you gotta do. I’ll be there, on the stage, with the band behind me, trying my best to prove something the only way I know how.
In support of the vinyl release of my most recent LP HEARTLAND 99 on Vinyl International Records, I made a new music video for the last song on the release: “FOLLOW YOUR FUCKED UP DREAMS.” I shot it with my friend Joe DeNardo (of the band GROWING) and I think it works best if you go HD, full screen, headphones on. Freaking out is the name of the game and if it’s not in your heart, why bother? But if you gotta get it out, you gotta get it out. It’s never too late to change your life.
New York City is a twisted hellscape but I still have faith in all the losers and the dreamers. Rock and roll 4 ever.
Watch the video above, buy HEARTLAND 99 on vinyl here, and download it on bandcamp here. Also check out a short piece about the video in The Fader.
Out now on THUNDER ZONE, a new digi-printed shirt from the bi-costal crew LAST RENAISSANCE. LR are in their own lane, folding all sorts of culture into a singular 3D sick character style that really takes you places. True blue American insanity culture, the real deal. Excited to have this out on Zone. BUY IT RIGHT NOW ultra limited edition, will be gone fast. And…
WATCH THE PROMO VIDEO BELOW, SOME OF THE SICKEST ANIMATION STYLES IN THE GAME PRESENTED WITH MUSIC FROM THE MYSTERIOUS “KAOSS EDGE” CAN YOU FEEL THIS?
Making records and playing shows: its what I do. What do you want me to say? I just can’t help myself. It’s a thing that is inside of me and I’ve tried to move on and I’ve tried to deny it but I can’t help myself. So I keep going. Above is footage from a raw gig I recently played at one of my favorite NYC venues, TRANS PECOS (playing there again in two weeks). Oh, and I guess it should be mentioned that this gig got a nice preview writeup in The New Yorker. People trying to make sense of contemporary American music, working it out in print, yeah fuck it why not respect. Check it out below.
A few months ago I went to South By Southwest. I was there for less than twelve hours and in that time I did one DJ set and performed one live concert. I played for less than 20 minutes and then 20 minutes after the show was over, me and the band were already back on the highway. We had to get out. There was no other choice. The popular tech/gadget site The Verge wrote a thing about that one show. It was pretty positive. It was a rock and roll show, no doubt no question. Sometimes people forget that there is still real value in that.
First off: RIP PRINCE. There is a lot of shit to say, but I’m going to pretty much keep it at that. It’s hard to know where to begin or end. The man was such a influential figure in my life I’m sure yours, too. He is the greatest of all time and a truly transcendent artist. He is a reminder of how high the bar can be set. I’ll just leave it at that.
This weekend I’m doing a short mini-tour. Extreme Animals say two shows can qualify as a mini-tour and I’m not sure if I fully agree, but fuck it. It’s a mini-tour. BALTIMORE on Friday at JOE SQUARED (FB event) with THE SNEAKS then a big 7 BAND RAGER at the great TRANS-PECOS in QUEENS on Saturday (FB event). Both shows should be great. I’m going to have the band with me and we will be trying our best to keep the spirit alive, in whatever tiny, tiny way we can. American Music. See You In The Pit.
It’s STATE OF THE THUNDER ZONE and it’s back, at least one more time. Do you even remember State Of The Thunder Zone? Maybe some things are better left buried in the pit of YouTube, I have no idea. Long story short in 2013 I did a weekly vlog for an entire year, 52 episodes total. Was I going crazy or did State Of The Thunder Zone make me go crazy? A little bit of column A, a little bit of column B. Regardless it is an insane thing that exists and now I’m doing it again, once more. At least once more! I’m losing my mind but I’m trying to change my life. And growing up is not easy. But fuck it, I’m trying my best. We are all trying our best. Watch it above.
My latest full length “HEARTLAND 99” has been out digitally since last Summer on THUNDER ZONE, but it’s finally getting the physical release that it might just deserve thanks to the great LA-via-Heartland label VINYL INTERNATIONAL, home to classic records by folks like Ariel Pink and TRS-80. You know the score: limited edition, red or black vinyl, download code. All that shit. Put it on and start to dream. Rugged USA-style punk rap rock soul for the weirdos and the losers. One major piece of an always-expanding puzzle. I’m as confused as ever and I’m sure you are too. Everything can feel so bleak on all ends of the spectrum but one amazing thing about music is that it doesn’t play by the same stupid rules as the rest of life. Play it loud and feel alright, if just for a little bit.