Tue, November 30th
8:00 PM - 6:00 PM
Sun, December 5th
8:00 PM - 6:00 PM
$25 advance $30 day of show
The State Theatre box office will open 1 hour before doors night of show.
Location: State Theatre, Portland, Maine
Fri, January 28th
8:00 PM - 6:00 PM
Some musicians take a while to build an audience and connect with fans. For the Los Angeles-based quartet Dirty Honey, success came right out of the gate. Released in March 2019, the band’s debut single, “When I’m Gone,” became the first song by an unsigned artist to reach No. 1 on Billboard’s Mainstream Rock chart. Their second single, “Rolling 7s,” went into the Top 5 and was still headed up when COVID changed everything. That same year, Dirty Honey opened for The Who, Guns ’N Roses, Slash, and Alter Bridge and was the “do-not-miss-band” at major rock festivals such as Welcome to Rockville, Rocklahoma, Louder Than Life, Heavy MTL, and Epicenter. On its first U.S. headline tour in January and February 2020, the band sold out every date.
When it came time to record its self-titled full-length debut album, the band—vocalist Marc LaBelle, guitarist John Notto, bassist Justin Smolian, and drummer Corey Coverstone—wasn’t about to mess with what was already working. Teaming up with producer Nick DiDia (Rage Against the Machine, Pearl Jam), who also produced the band’s 2019 self-titled EP, Dirty Honey again captured the lightning-in-a-bottle dynamics and energy of their live sound.
“As a guitarist, I’m always inspired by the everlasting pursuit of the perfect riff,” says Notto. “I also wanted to extend the artistic statement that we had already made. We weren’t looking to sound different, or prove our growth, necessarily. It was more about, ‘Oh, you thought that was good? Hold my beer.'”
“Because of the pandemic,” added drummer Coverstone, “we had a lot more time to write and prepare, which was great. It meant that we were able to workshop the songs a lot more, and I think it really made a difference.”
Dirty Honey’s album indeed builds on the band’s output to date, with airtight songwriting that plays up their strengths: sexy, bluesy, nasty rock’n’roll, melodic hard rock, and soulful 70s blues-rock. On “The Wire,” LaBelle reaffirms his status as one of contemporary rock’s best vocalists, while “Another Last Time” is a raunchy, timeless ballad about a toxic relationship that you just can’t stop saying goodbye to. “Tied Up” and the album’s lead single “California Dreamin,’’ both feature smoking guitar solos bookended by massive riffs and hooks.
“‘California Dreaming’ was the last song we wrote,” said bassist Justin Smolian. “We finished it about two weeks before we recorded it, so the song was still so new, and we were trying out different things, so every take was a little different. But there was that one where we just captured it, and it was magic.”
Although each band member started playing music as kids—at the age of eight, Notto’s parents even bought him a red-and-white Stratocaster—each one brings eclectic influences to Dirty Honey’s sound. For example, drummer Coverstone has studied with jazz and L.A. session drummers but loves heavy metal; Notto grew up listening to ’70s funk and R&B as well as rock ‘n’ roll, and bassist Smolian has a bachelor of music in classical guitar and loves Tom Petty and The Beach Boys.
LaBelle meanwhile, takes cues from his songwriting idols (to name a few, Robert Plant, Steven Tyler, Mick Jagger, Chris Robinson, and the late Chris Cornell) when coming up with lyrics. As a result, the songs on the Dirty Honey album hint at life’s ebbs and flows—shattering heartbreak, romantic connection, intense soul-searching—while giving listeners space to draw their own conclusions.
“Sometimes, if you just let lyrics pass behind your ears, they sound like cool shit is being said,” LaBelle says. “And then once you dive in, you realize, ‘Oh, that’s really thoughtful.’ But it still doesn’t have a meaning that’s easy to pinpoint. There’s an overarching idea that is really cool, but it’s not necessarily on-the-nose.”
Although the Dirty Honey album may sound effortless, its genesis had a bumpy start. The day before the band members were due to fly to Australia to track the album, Los Angeles entered lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and traveling was off the table. However, Dirty Honey was still eager to work with DiDia, so they devised a Plan B: recording the full-length in a Los Angeles studio with one of DiDia’s long-time engineers, and the producer beamed into the proceedings via the magic of modern technology.
“He was able to listen to what we were laying down in real-time, through this app,” says LaBelle. It was like he was in the room with us. It was surprisingly seamless the way it all went down.”
Having to switch gears delayed the start of recording slightly, although this extra time ended up being a boon. Dirty Honey rented a rehearsal space and demoed the album’s songs in advance, meaning the tracks were in good shape when DiDia came onboard. Notto mixed and recorded these workshopped tracks himself, which helped him rediscover one of Dirty Honey’s biggest strengths: being well-rehearsed while not over polishing their work.
“I’ve learned just a little bit more about what people might mean when they say, magic—you know, ‘This one has the magic,'” he says. “We would do two and three different demos of a song, so there would be a few versions. On a few occasions, the version that people kept going back to was the sloppiest, if you look at it from a performance standpoint.”
LaBelle agrees. “It’s just about getting the performance right and not thinking about it too much. I never like to be perfect in the studio. None of the stuff that I really liked as a kid was. I don’t really see myself getting away from that too much in the future just because I think you lose the soul if you do it too many times, if it’s too perfect.”
Notto also admits that the creative process isn’t necessarily always all fun and games. But for him and the rest of Dirty Honey, pushing through those tough times and coming out stronger on the other side is worth it. “When you finally come through on those moments, that’s where the real magic comes in,” he says. “What makes all of our songs fun to play and listen to is we don’t allow ourselves to stop short of getting the best possible results out of each one of them.”
First impressions last a lifetime. Wolfgang Van Halen has prepared a lifetime to make his first impression. The songwriter, vocalist, and multi-instrumentalist worked tirelessly towards the introduction of MAMMOTH [Explorer1], his self-titled 2021 debut album. Playing every instrument and singing each and every note, his music presents a personal and powerful perspective, balancing memorable hooks and tight technicality. As many times as audiences have experienced his talent alongside the likes of Tremonti, Clint Lowery, and of course, Van Halen, they meet Wolf as an individual for the very first time now.
“You only have one chance to make a first impression, and I wanted to do so to the best of my abilities,” he affirms. “Throughout the whole process, I was finding who I am musically and by the end, I got a pretty good handle on a sound I can claim for myself.”
His father often played guitar against his mother’s pregnant belly, and Wolf absorbed those vibrations from the womb. At the age of 10, his Pop gave him a drum kit for his birthday. To this day, Wolf considers himself “a drummer before anything else.” As he developed as a musician, he learned how to play guitar in order to perform “316” — which his father penned for him — at a 6th-grade talent show.
It may come as a surprise, but outside of his father teaching him one drumbeat from an AC/DC song, Wolfgang taught himself every instrument. “My dad wasn’t the best teacher,” he laughs. “I would ask him to play something, and then he would just proceed to be Eddie Van Halen. He would look at me and say, ‘Do that.’ to which I would laugh and sarcastically reply, ‘Sure thing, no problem.’”
In the summer of 2006 when he was 15 years old, Wolf grabbed a bass and began noodling. While at the legendary 5150 Studios, his impromptu woodshedding inspired Eddie and Uncle Alex. Endless family jam sessions followed. By summer’s end, Wolfgang phoned David Lee Roth’s manager and by winter Roth showed up for rehearsal. They rocked “On Fire,” and “That’s how the 2007 tour began,” says Wolf.
Not only did Wolf canvas the world with Van Halen while in high school, but he also held down the low end on 2012’s A Different Kind of Truth—which debuted at #2 on the Billboard Top 200. When not on tour with Van Halen, he cut bass for Tremonti’s critically acclaimed Cauterize  and Dust  in addition to joining the band on the road. In 2019, Wolf handled drums and also played bass on half of the 10 songs for Clint Lowery’s solo debut, God Bless The Renegades.
In the midst of all this, at the beginning of 2015, Wolf broke ground on what would become MAMMOTH with producer Michael “Elvis” Baskette [Alter Bridge, Slash] behind the board. Wolf began to embrace his voice, inspired by everyone from his father, to bands like AC/DC, Foo Fighters, Nine Inch Nails, TOOL, and Jimmy Eat World. “I’ve been singing my whole life, but it wasn’t until MAMMOTH that I really found my voice. Elvis was great, and he helped me gain the confidence to become a lead vocalist.”
“The name Mammoth is really special to me.” says Wolf. “Not only was it the name of Van Halen before it became Van Halen, but my father was also the lead singer. Ever since my dad told me this, I always thought that when I grew up, I’d call my own band Mammoth, because I loved the name so much. I’m so thankful that my father was able to listen to, and enjoy the music I made. I’m really proud of the work I’ve done and nothing made me happier than seeing how proud he was that I was continuing the family legacy.”
Location: State Theatre, Portland, Maine
Sat, February 5th
7:30 PM - 6:00 PM
Killswitch Engage first shook the structure of heavy music upon climbing out of snowy industrialized Western Massachusetts in 2000. A musical outlier, the band pioneered a union of thrashed-out European guitar pyrotechnics, East Coast hardcore spirit, on-stage hijinks, and enlightened lyricism that set the pace for what the turn-of-the-century deemed heavy. 2002’s Alive Or Just Breathing became avowed as a definitive album, being named among “The Top 100 Greatest Metal Albums of the Decade” by Decibel and celebrated by everyone from Metal Hammer to Revolver. Not only did they bust open the floodgates for dozens to follow, but they also garnered two GRAMMY® Award nominations in the category of “Best Metal Performance” in 2005 and 2014, respectively, and gold certifications for The End of Heartache  and As Daylight Dies . The group landed three consecutive Top 10 debuts on the Billboard Top 200 with Killswitch Engage , Disarm The Descent , and their career high best bow at #6 with Incarnate . The latter two releases would also both capture #1 on the Top Rock Albums and Top Hard Rock Albums charts. Their total streams have exceeded half-a-billion to date. Along the way, the boys have shared stages with some of the biggest acts in the world and have sold out countless headline gigs in six continents across the globe.
2019 represents another turning point. The quintet—Adam Dutkiewicz [lead guitar], Joel Stroetzel [rhythm guitar], Mike D’Antonio [bass], Justin Foley [drums], and Jesse Leach [vocals]—sharpen every side of this signature sound on their eighth full-length and first for Metal Blade, Atonement. The vision they shared two decades ago crystallizes like never before as evidenced by the first single “Unleashed.”
AUGUST BURNS RED — JB Brubaker [lead guitar], Brent Rambler [rhythm guitar], Matt Greiner [drums], Jake Luhrs [lead vocals], and Dustin Davidson [bass] — released Leveler: 10th Anniversary Edition on May 21st 2021, and are gearing up to take it on the road in September/October. The band re-recorded its fourth album, which was originally released on June 21, 2011, with special guests, brand new guitar solos, alternate tunings, and more. Leveler: 10th Anniversary Edition was produced, mixed, and mastered by Carson Slovak and Grant McFarland at Atrium Audio. The vinyl was mastered by Will Putney.
“Leveler is a record we’ve always been proud of, and we wanted to do something special for its ten-year anniversary,” says Brubaker. “We’ve done some cool remix projects for previous albums when they’ve turned 10, but with Leveler, we decided to kick things up a notch. We dove into this record and dissected the songs, rewriting solos, changing the tunings, adding new textures and elements, and got a few of our friends to do some guest spots as well. Our longtime producers Carson Slovak and Grand McFarland handled the recording/mixing and helped us take Leveler to new sonic heights. I think this is the best-sounding ABR record we’ve ever made, and it’s going to allow people to experience the record in a whole new way. I can’t wait to share this with everyone.”
Upon release, Leveler was met with near-universal praise. All Music claimed, “This kind of contrast between light and dark makes Leveler a wonderfully dynamic album that is musically engaging.” Revolver declared that “August Burns Red have set their own bar even higher…and have done so for all of the scene in the process.” Decibel labeled it “adventurous without the proggy aftertaste,” while Exclaim! deemed it the band’s best. Outburn lauded the “all-new level of musicianship,”” awarding it a perfect 10 star rating.
Time fortifies the bonds between us. Since emerging in 2018, Light The Torch have grown stronger in lockstep together as a band and as friends. Through this growth, the Los Angeles, CA trio—Howard Jones [vocals], Francesco Artusato [guitar], and Ryan Wombacher [bass]—only enhanced every aspect of their signature sound. Upheld by head-spinning seven-string virtuosity, yet also anchored to skyscraping melodies, the group crafted twelve no-nonsense and no-holds-barred metallic anthems on their 2021 second full-length album, You Will Be The Death of Me .
“The past few years have helped me to become much more personal in my writing,” explains Howard. “Even though I’m kind of a loner, this band became real family. My experiences with Ryan and Fran inside and outside of the band truly bonded us. I think it shows in this album, it truly represents who we are as a group.”
“Every second on this record was thought-out,” adds Fran. “Howard’s performance gives me chills, because it feels so alive. There’s so much emotion in it. I know the guy very well at this point, and our friendship is a big part of Light The Torch.”
That friendship cemented over the course of the past three years. The group shot out of the gate as a contender on their full-length debut, Revival. It bowed at #4 on the Billboard US Independent Albums Chart and at #10 on the Hard Rock Albums Chart in addition to receiving acclaim from Revolver, Outburn, and many more. “Calm Before the Storm” racked up a staggering 14.5 million Spotify streams, while “The Safety of Disbelief” remains one of SiriusXM Octane’s all-time most requested songs. They also crisscrossed North America and Europe on tour with the likes of Trivium, Avatar, In Flames, Ice Nine Kills, Killswitch Engage and August Burns Red to name a few.
The State Theatre box office will open 1 hour before doors night of show.
Location: State Theatre, Portland, Maine
Sat, February 5th
7:30 PM - 6:00 PM
Trevor Noah is coming to Portland on February 5, 2021.
Tickets on sale Friday, October 1 at 10:00 AM.
Trevor Noah is the most successful comedian in Africa and is the host of the Emmy® Award-winning “The Daily Show” on Comedy Central. Under Trevor, “The Daily Show with Trevor Noah” has broken free from the restraints of a 30-minute linear show, producing engaging social content, award-winning digital series, podcasts and more for its global audience. “The Daily Show with Trevor Noah” has received numerous Emmy Award nominations, including Outstanding Variety Talk Series and Outstanding Writing for A Variety Series.
Trevor has written, produced, and starred in 11 comedy specials, including his most recent, “Trevor Noah: Son of Patricia,” which launched in November 2018 on Netflix. The special touches upon racism, immigration, camping and more. “Trevor Noah: Son Of Patricia” received a NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Variety Show, as well as a Grammy Award nomination for Best Comedy Album.
Trevor is the author of the #1 New York Times bestseller “Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood,” which has received the Thurber Prize for American Humor and two NAACP Image Awards. The Audible edition of “Born a Crime,” performed by Trevor, remains one of the top-selling, highest-rated, and most-commented-on Audible performances of all time. To date, “Born a Crime” has sold over 1 million copies across all formats.
In April 2018, Noah launched The Trevor Noah Foundation, a youth development initiative that empowers youth with the foundation for a better life: access to high-quality education. Noah's vision is a world where an education enables youth to dream, see and build the impossible.
Location: Cross Insurance Arena, Portland, Maine
Fri, March 11th
8:00 PM - 6:00 PM
Friday, 11 March 2022 Portland, ME
18+ Show – HEALTH CHECK REQUIRED –
Location: Aura, Portland, Maine
Sun, March 13th
7:00 PM - 6:00 PM
After enduring a year like 2020, no one could have possibly expected Al Jourgensen to stay silent on the maelstrom of the past 12 months. As the mastermind behind pioneering industrial outfit Ministry, Jourgensen has spent the last four decades using music as a megaphone to rally listeners to the fight for equal rights, restoring American liberties, exposing exploitation and putting crooked politicians in their rightful place—set to a background of aggressive riffs, searing vocals and manipulated sounds to drive it home.
As Jourgensen watched the chaos that befell the world during the height of a global pandemic and the tensions rising from one of the most important elections in American history, he seized on the opportunity to write, spending quarantine holed up in his self- built home studio—Scheisse Dog Studio— along with engineer Michael Rozon and girlfriend Liz Walton to create Ministry’s latest masterpiece, Moral Hygiene (out October 1 on Nuclear Blast Records). Anchored by last year’s leadoff track “Alert Level”—which asks listeners to internalize the question “How concerned are you?”—the 10 songs on this upcoming 15th studio album cover the breadth of the current dilemmas facing humanity, while ruminating on the sizable impact of COVID-19, the inevitable effects of climate change, consequences of misinformed conspiracies and the stakes in
the fight for racial equality. And most importantly doing so with the lens of what we as a society are going to do about it all.
“The one good thing about taking a year off from any social activity is that you really get to sit back and get an overview of things as opposed to being caught up in the moment,” says Jourgensen, “and what became inevitably clear is that the times are changing and this past year has been a wake up call—and that’s a very good thing. Because society as we have known it the past few decades has needed to change,” he continues. “Ever since Reagan and the girth of Wall Street, we have become too close to the belief that greed is good. Society has really taken a dark turn and now we are bearing the fruit of that that misdirection driven by the idea that it’s all about me and not other people and to take care of yourself and fuck everything else. We now more than ever need moral hygiene. It’s what we have to return to in order to function as the human species on this planet.”
Moral Hygiene comes on the heels of Ministry’s acclaimed 2018 album AmeriKKKant (hailed by Loudwire as Jourgensen’s own “state of the union” address) that was written as a reaction to Donald J. Trump being elected president—though Jourgensen says this new album is more informational and reflective in tone. “With AmeriKKKant I was in shock that Trump won. I didn’t know what to do, but I knew I had to do something. Because I believe if you are a musician or an artist you should be expressing what’s going on around you through your art. It’s going to happen whether you do it consciously or unconsciously. Moral Hygiene however has progressed even further into a cautionary tale of what will happen if we don’t act. There’s less rage, but there’s more reflection and I bring in some guests to help cement that narrative.”
In addition to recruiting long-time cohort Jello Biafra (Jourgensen’s partner in the side project Lard) for the quirky earworm “Sabotage Is Sex,” other guest appearances include guitarist Billy Morrison (Billy Idol/Royal Machines) on a rendition of The Stooges hit “Search & Destroy.”
There’s also the riotous track “Good Trouble,” inspired by the message of activism and social justice in John Lewis’ posthumously published essay, released by New York Times after the Congressman’s passing last July.
“I remember watching the coverage of his death and the next day seeing this entire letter from him come out and thinking not only is John Lewis a Civil Rights icon but he was so astute to think of how that legacy could fit into the progress of the future,”
says Jourgensen. “That letter was so heartfelt and his words were so much aligned with my own ideals I just immediately knew I wanted to dedicate a song to him. That track really is the moral backbone of this album.”
Another standout track is “Believe Me,” featuring a throwback vocal style from Jourgensen that harkens back to his singing on Twitch and cult classic “(Every Day Is) Halloween.” The song came out of a jam session with Morrison, Cesar Soto and sampling from Liz Walton, and reminded Jourgensen of his formative days at Chicago Trax Studios where communal ideas were constantly informing early Ministry records. “’Believe Me’ had such an old school vibe I wanted to bring back old school vocals. …It’s funny how things come back to you,” says Jourgensen, also reflecting on Ministry turning 40 in 2021.
Though there have been other side projects over the years including Revolting Cocks and Surgical Meth Machine, Ministry remains Jourgensen’s lifetime passion project, and was first established in Chicago in 1981 through a relationship with legendary Wax Trax! Records. In its earliest days, Ministry was identifiable by a synth-pop style in line with the new sounds and technology that were being developed in the ‘80s, no moreso than on the infamous LP With Sympathy released by Arista Records in 1983. Yet as time progressed, so did Ministry, quickly developing a harsher and more stylized sound that found the band and Jourgensen heralded as the godfathers of industrial music amidst the release of seminal albums Twitch (1986), The Land of Rape and Honey (1988), and The Mind Is A Terrible Thing To Taste (1989) that became cultural cornerstones. With Psalm 69: The Way to Succeed and The Way to Suck Eggs (1992), Ministry hit an all time high in the mainstream and received its first of six lifetime Grammy nominations. Eight more albums would follow before an indefinite break in 2013, only to be unearthed again in 2018 with AmeriKKKant.
With the release of Moral Hygiene, Jourgensen is more positive than before. “This may sound crazy but I’m more hopeful about 2021 than I have been in two decades at least,” he says. “Because I do see things changing; people are starting to see through all the bullshit and want to get back to actual decorum in society. We could just treat each other nicely and be treated nicely in return. I never thought Ministry would be in the position of preaching traditional values, but this is the rebellion now.”
Where to begin with a new Melvins release? August 24, in the year 79 A.D. seems as good a place as any. On this day, citizens of Pompeii emerged squinting from their villas, fell knee-bound and, drawing panicked eyeballs skyward, watched as money shots of glowing lava spewed down upon them, flash frying bodies in suspended animation. Had the Melvins been there on that fateful day they surely would have scoffed, simply cracked free of their lava encasing, belched out a plume of ash and gone on their merry way, refusing to be frozen – or sticking with the metaphor – burned in an instance of time.
It’s not that the Melvins are timeless, nothing so anodyne or sentimental as that. Their latest offering, the acoustic retrospective, Five Legged Dog, finds the Melvins unstuck in time, the musical version of Vonnegut’s Billy Pilgrim, quantum-vaulting between eras and eardrums. At once going forwards and backwards. Is it mere coincidence the album’s epicenter should be a rendering of the Stones’ rocker, “Sway,” with conspicuous keystone lyrics, “ Did you ever wake up to find / A day that broke up your mind / Destroyed your notion of circular time….” There it is, plain as Pompeii.
Move now from 79 A.D. to 1979 A.D., the catastrophic era of disco denim stuffed with schlong, and continue right up to today. Somewhere between those encrusted epochs of banker-rock, a vein of music materialized where ego and orthodoxy were anathema. Of all the lies here told, this is none of them: The Melvins gave birth to that age. Hardcore punk was the semen and heavy metal the swampy bush of this unholy conception. Both an aesthetic and an ethic is what it takes to define an age. And during a near 40-year shelf-life, the Melvins continue to dazzle, confuse and confound. Five Legged Dog is a four album beast, a testament to their unmatched work ethic, their penchant for pushing the envelope, then shredding it to bits. Said Melvins founder, Buzz Osborne, “One acoustic record seems like a joke and two is pretty normal, but doing FOUR?!? That’s like going to war against an army of gorillas on LSD.”
Long before Seattle burned under its own pyrocumulonimbus lightning fires there was Osborne and drummer, Dale Crover, from working-class Montesano and Aberdeen respectively. Multiple (trusted) sources confirm that the two met while rat-holing their way into local opium dens, sidling up to mourning widows and desultory loggers on the nod to relieve them of their pocket change. It was by this method that they amassed enough money to rent their first instruments. But their music initially took a back seat to academia when they were both accepted into the prestigious Bushwood Academy of Technology and engrossed themselves in an emerging field of physics known as T-symmetry, the scientific rule that dictates time runs differently backwards than it does forwards. Imagine an oak tree slowly descending into the ground, or a demolished building heaving upward and settling in full pristine form. Though a career in physics was not meant to be, the principal of T-symmetry had a profound effect on them, and out of this, the Melvins and their musical space-time fuckery, was born. And if this ain’t the truth, pardner, then God’s a penguin. ?? The Melvins rudder has been their love of other bands, always fans of the good shit. They were unabashedly Kids In Satan’s Service. But not just KISS… The Who, Throbbing Gristle, Butthole Surfers, Blondie, Flipper and the unfathomable bathysphere of electroacoustic noise… Melvins loved those bands the way you love your oxygen. And after all this time, they breathe that music still. The more mordant their cover renditions have been, the deeper the Melvins’ sound has plumbed, until all familiars are hidden, then resolved as newly slabbed granite so massive that to dismantle it into its separate sources is unimaginable. Few artists work so hard at exceeding limits, fewer still follow absurdity past all reason and yet, mile upon mile Melvins strike fertile soil of sound and conceptual fury. And with this album Osborne aimed to make a statement. “This a big one. We knew we had to do something massive to prove we weren’t fucking around.”
According to Crover, “These four albums represent a career retrospective.” Indeed, Five Legged Dog takes a measured sampling of their recorded works, alternating selections from Big Business-era albums, Nude With Boots, The Bride Screamed Murder, (A) Senile Animal, and the tragically under-appreciated Bulls and Bees, and pairing them with ancient pagan favorites Stoner Witch, Honky and Houdini (whose iconic album cover, curiously, depicts a two-headed mutt, no doubt the same rabid bitch that years later spawned this eponymous five-legged dog). Melvins diehards will foam at the 36-song track list which includes “Edgar The Elephant,” “Revolve,” “The Bit,” “Hooch,” “Anaconda,” “Billy Fish,” as well as a no-way-they-can-do-that-acoustically version of “Honey Bucket.”
But know this, the acoustic designation is a misnomer, this is not a lighter, more pensive Melvins by any stretch. No wistful preening. These songs are delta variants, weighty, plangent, cavernous, and often brutal renditions. Not since Townshend, has anyone so successfully transmuted an acoustic guitar into a percussion instrument as does Buzz. On “The Pitfalls in Serving Warrants,” his strumming is precise, immediate and determined. Later Buzz deftly shifts into a roiling version of “Prig,” which would make the perfect complement to an afternoon spent sipping soma in the shade. His guitar strumming often gallops in tandem with Crover, who, for the album’s entirety, decided to scrap traditional wooden drum sticks to compliment the album’s authentic undertones. “I used brush sticks on every track. What a pain in the ass!” But Crover nevertheless manages to blast through tunnels with those brushes. Four-string virtuoso, Steven McDonald, rounds out the trio with his wholly unique bass lines. But it’s McDonald’s ability for vocal harmonizing that contributes to the album’s haunting atmosphere. “We knew the singing was going to sell this thing,” said Crover. However, initially the idea of doing a completely acoustic retrospective was met with McDonald’s raised brow. “But once I got into the concept I was hooked to the eyeballs. I think this came out really great! It’s some of my best bass playing and singing. I got to sing ‘Sway’ by the Stones, and they even wanted to do a cover of ‘Charlie’ by my main band, Redd Kross!”
In addition to ”Charlie” and “Sway,” other covers on the album include a reverential version of Alice Cooper’s “Halo of Flies.” And sticking with flies, Melvins’ staple, “Eye Flys” ends with a slow marching cover of “Woman” by Free. Another highlight, this one tinted with country-western vocal fry, includes past Melvins bassist, Jeff Pinkus wringing undiscovered pathos from the Fred Neil classic “Everybody’s Talkin’.” The song evokes a fleeting taste of The Melvins had they taken up residence in the shit-kicker bars of Bakersfield circa 1952, or rather, if Buck, Wynn, and Hag cut their teeth on punk rock and acid. Buzz agrees, “JD Pinkus does a fantastic job! His kind of insanity fits right in!”
So here we are. A four-album acoustic retrospective that somehow evades nostalgia. Did you expect, something predictable? This is The Melvins, after-all. Keep an eye out for this Five Legged Dog, this frothing mongrel, as it stalks roadside, ready to kill or maim to protect its maggot-covered bone. Unless you’re lookin’ to get down and make puppies.
Corrosion of Conformity are reuniting with guitarist/vocalist Pepper Keenan for UK/European and North American dates. Other than a few surprise appearances, this will be the first time Keenan has toured with the band since 2006. This will also be the first time the “Deliverance” lineup of the group has played together since 2001.
C.O.C. recently emerged from hibernation as a trio and released 2012’s eponymous album and 2014’s “IX” to wide acclaim, but many have been eagerly awaiting the return of Pepper Keenan.
The band were originally an influential hardcore punk/heavy metal crossover act before reaching critical success with a new lineup on 1991’s “Blind” album. That trajectory continued with wider appeal as Keenan took over as primary vocalist on “Deliverance” (1994) and “Wiseblood” (1996).
These two recordings in particular fused the raw energy of the previous albums with some great strides forward in classic rock inspired songwriting and more spacious production and execution, which were often copied but rarely equalled.
This juggernaut gained mass and momentum with relentless touring alongside Metallica, Clutch, Eyehategod and many more.
Eventually following “In the Arms of God”, 2005, Keenan focused all energy on his hometown band Down.
Until now, that is.
Recent internet chatter on the subject of a reunion turns out be true.
Location: State Theatre, Portland, Maine
Fri, March 18th
7:00 PM - 6:00 PM
Waterfront Concerts and the City of Portland are excited to announce WHITNEY CUMMINGS "TOUCH ME" STAND UP COMEDY TOUR at Merrill Auditorium in Portland, Maine on Friday, March 18, 2022.
As Tickets for this show will go on sale to the general public beginning Friday, October 8th at 10:00AM EST.
Comedian Whitney Cummings has announced dates for her upcoming “Touch Me” stand up comedy tour. The tour will feature Cummings’ signature take on the current culture and the return to touring after the COVID-19 pandemic. “Touch Me” is a play on Cummings most recent Netflix special, “Can I Touch It” and will destigmatize and celebrate the importance of being together again after over 14 months of isolation. The beautiful thing about the phrase “Touch Me”, is that it has multiple meanings: the most obvious of course, is physical touch but there is also being touched emotionally, intellectually, spiritually and Cummings will cover it all.
Over the past few months while larger theaters have been closed due to COVID-19 restrictions, Whitney has been touring the United States, workshopping her new material in smaller rooms in preparation for her massive “Touch Me” theatre tour. During these creative workshopping sessions, Cummings has been engaging with her audience through her stand up, but also through physical touch- hugs, dancing, playful antics, etc. As the most prominent female voice in standup comedy, the “Touch Me” tour will be a big ole’ party and celebration of LIFE! The material is deeply personal, reflecting on the changes the pandemic brought to her life and her observations of today’s society.
“Over the past year, I’ve had a lot of time to drink but also to work on ways to connect with comedy fans through my podcast and social media, and even though we’ve all been so far away from each other, I feel closer than ever to the people who follow me. I went from putting out a well-polished hour comedy special every couple years to sharing my personal life daily and frankly, secrets I shouldn’t even tell my therapist. I can’t wait to get back in venues with comedy fans and get every other disease besides Covid,” says Cummings.
About Whitney Cummings
Whitney Cummings is a comedian, actor, writer, producer, director and host of the podcast Good for You. Best known for creating and starring in the NBC series Whitney, Whitney also is also co-creator and co-writer of the Emmy-nominated CBS comedy series 2 Broke Girls. She has appeared in multiple television shows and films, as well as multiple stand-up specials, one of which was nominated for an American Comedy Award. In 2017 she published her memoir titled I’m Fine ... And Other Lies. Whitney’s first one-hour stand up special, “Money Shot,” premiered on Comedy Central in August 2010 and was nominated for an American Comedy Award. Her second one-hour stand-up special, “Whitney Cummings: I Love You,” debuted on Comedy Central in June 2014. Her third one-hour stand-up special “I’m Your Girlfriend,” aired on HBO in 2016 and her fourth, “Can I Touch It?” aired on Netflix in 2019.
Location: Merrill Auditorium in Portland, Maine
Wed, July 27th
6:00 PM - 6:00 PM
Waterfront Concerts is excited to announce Foo Fighters: LIVE IN NORTH AMERICA 2022 at MAINE SAVINGS AMPHITHEATER, part of the Varney Insurance Concert Series, in Bangor, Maine on Wednesday, July 27, 2022.
Tickets go on sale to the general public beginning Friday, December 3rd at 10:00AM EST.
Newly inducted Rock & Roll Hall of Famers Foo Fighters will be giving the people a lot more of what they want in 2022. The band has confirmed 18 more marathon evenings of life-affirming rock communion, to take place at amphitheaters, stadiums and festivals across North America during May, July and August of next year.
The 2022 dates will mark Foo Fighters’ most extensive North American run since the February release of the band’s 10th album, Medicine at Midnight (Roswell/RCA) — hailed as “brighter and more optimistic than anything they’ve ever done” (ROLLING STONE)” and “one of Foo Fighters’ best albums of this century” (WALL STREET JOURNAL).
For further information on Foo Fighters' 25th 26th 27th anniversary tour—including special guests to be announced soon—keep an eye on foofighters.com and the band’s socials.
Citi is the official presale credit card of the Foo Fighters Live in the USA Tour. As such, Citi cardmembers will have access to purchase presale tickets beginning Tuesday, November 30 at 12pm ET until Thursday, December 2 at 10pm local time through Citi Entertainment. For complete presale details visit www.citientertainment.com.
Location: Maine Savings Amphitheater, Bangor, Maine