Los Angeles – Cleopatra Records will be releasing the brand new album from one of the most successful melodic alt-rock bands still making music today, Gin Blossoms! “Mixed Reality” will be released on June 15, 2018. The Blossoms recently celebrated the 25 year anniversary of their seminal, multi-platinum album “New Miserable Experience,” which spawned the blockbuster singles “Hey Jealousy” and “Found Out About You!”
Gin Blossoms’ blockbuster 1992 album “New Miserable Experience” spawned four Top 40 hit singles and established the Arizona quintet as one of the top rock groups of that decade. More than 25 years have passed since the release of “New Miserable Experience,” and now Gin Blossoms are back with their best set of songs in years. Produced by Don Dixon and engineered by Mitch Easter, “Mixed Reality” demonstrates that the timeless appeal of Gin Blossoms’ music has endured.
Says lead singer Robin Wilson, “I knew we were recording with Don and Mitch, and I managed to hack into a young version of myself to craft songs. All of us turned in our best work in 25 years. Regardless of the commercial outcome, I know ‘Mixed Reality’ is special, and that we’ve lived up to our legacy.”
Gin Blossoms formed in 1987 in the Arizona city of Tempe; guitarists Jesse Valenzuela and bassist Bill Leen were founding members. After some lineup changes, the group coalesced around Valenzuela, Leen, Robin Wilson (vocals and guitar), drummer Phillip Rhoades, and guitarist Doug Hopkins. One quality that set Gin Blossoms apart from other groups was its deep bench: four of its five members wrote songs.
In 2017 Gin Blossoms began work on their first new album in almost eight years. Longtime producer and friend of the band John Hampton had passed away in 2014, so at first, the group considered self-producing. But at one of their shows, they met Don Dixon, producer of the Smithereens’ first two albums and a legend in power pop circles.
The group booked time in Mitch Easter’s Fidelitorium Studio in Kernersville, N.C., working with Dixon as well as Easter, a veteran of R.E.M. sessions. Now Gin Blossoms had a producer and engineer who helped define the ’80s jangling power pop, a style that exerted a major influence on the band’s own musical approach. “We needed to be shaken and taken out of our element,” Wilson explains. “Working with Don and Mitch gave us the inspiration to reconnect with the very foundations of the band: where we came from as songwriters and bandmates.”
“Mixed Reality” shares the same timeless feel as “New Miserable Experience”; it’s packed with 15 songs, with Wilson, Leen, Johnson, and Valenzuela all contributing material. And once again, the mix of songwriters results in something that has that unmistakable Gin Blossoms sound. “As much as we are children of our influences,” explains Wilson, “we managed to do something that was both familiar and original.”
“We’re at the point now where we play better, we communicate better, we get along more,” says Wilson. “We’re more grateful. It’s a very full-circle thing for us to be releasing ‘Mixed Reality.’” Built around the proven strategy of using the band’s deep songwriting bench, and packed with memorable songs that connect with listeners while transcending a specific time period, “Mixed Reality” may turn out to be as timeless as Gin Blossoms’ major label debut.
2. Face The Dark
3. New Mexico Trouble
4. Angels Fly
5. Here Again
6. Still Some Room In Heaven
7. Miranda Chicago
8. Girl On The Side
9. Fortunate Street
12. Forever Is This Night
13. The JFK Shit Show
14. The Devil’s Daughter
15. Mega Pawn King
Catch the Blossoms on tour this year with special engagements alongside Vertical Horizon & Tonic!
Tue 05 29 18 – Grand Rapids, MI – 20 Monroe Live
Thu 05 31 18 – South Bend, IN – Four Winds Field
Fri 06 01 18 – Eldon, MO – Shawnee Bluff Vineyard
Sat 06 02 18 – Alabaster, AL – Alabaster City Fest
Sun 06 03 18 – Greensboro, NC – White Oak Amphitheater
Wed 06 06 18 – Columbus, OH – Express Live! Outdoor Amphitheater
Thu 06 07 18 – Montclair, NJ – Wellmont Theater
Fri 06 08 18 – Big Flats, NY – Tag’s Summer Sound Stage
Sat 06 09 18 – Fairfax, VA – Celebrate Fairfax Fair
Sun 06 10 18 – Huntington, NY – The Paramount
Wed 06 13 18 – Huber Heights, OH – Rose Music Center at The Heigh
Thu 06 14 18 – Northfield, OH – Hard Rock Rocksino Northfield
Fri 06 15 18 – Indianapolis, IN – The Pavillion
Sat 06 16 18 – Springfield, IL – Bank of Springfield Plaza
Sun 06 17 18 – West Saint Louis Park, MN – Common Sound Festival
Sat 07 07 18 – Milwaukee, WI – Summerfest
Sun 07 08 18 – Rochester, MN – Down by the Riverside Concert
Tue 07 10 18 – Des Moines, IA – Simon Estes Riverfront Amphitheater
Thu 07 12 18 – Appleton, WI – Neuroscience Group Field
Fri 07 13 18 – Toledo, OH – Promenade Park
Sat 07 14 18 – Fort Wayne, IN – Headwaters Park
Wed 07 18 18 – Cohasset, MA – South Shore Music Circus
Thu 07 19 18 – Stamford, CT – Alive @ Five Outdoor Summer Co
Fri 07 20 18 – Pittsburgh, PA – Stage AE – Outdoors
Sat 07 21 18 – Atlantic City, NJ – The Theater, Hard Rock Hotel & Casino
Sun 07 22 18 – Lakeville, PA – Cove Haven Resort
Tue 07 24 18 – Hampton Beach, NH – Hampton Beach Casino Ballroom
Wed 07 25 18 – Hyannis, MA – Cape Cod Melody Tent
Fri 07 27 18 – Chautauqua, NY – Chautauqua Institution Amphith
Sat 07 28 18 – Island Lake, IL – Sideouts
Thu 08 02 18 – Selbyville, DE – The Freeman Stage at Bayside
Sat 08 04 18 – Mount Tabor, NJ – At The Tabernacle
Fri 08 10 18 – Chamblee, GA – Chamblee City Park
Sat 08 11 18 – Suwanee, GA – Suwanee Town Center Park
Phil Mogg has confirmed that next year’s 50th-anniversary tour with UFO will be his last as the frontman of the long-running hard rock band. Consequently, it seems almost certain that at that point they will cease to exist. UFO were formed in London in 1969 and Mogg is their only ever-present member, performing on all of the group’s 22 studio albums.
“This decision has been a long time coming, I’ve considered stepping down at the end of UFO’s previous two tours,” Mogg explains. “I don’t want to call this a farewell tour as I hate that word, but next year’s gigs will represent my final tap-dancing appearances with the band.
“2019 marks UFO’s 50th anniversary, so the timing feels right,” he continues. “There will be a final tour of the UK and we will also play some shows in selected other cities that the band has a strong connection with. But outside of the UK this won’t be a long tour. Being out on the road isn’t always tremendously luxurious and although the playing is as great as it ever was, the stuff that surrounds it becomes very tiresome. I always told myself that when I reached that stage I would step down, and that’s what I’m going to do. This is the right time for me to quit.”
Mogg turned 70 back in April and although his voice remains strong, he admits that age played its part in his conclusion.
“I’m a big reader of obituaries, and my finger always goes down to: ‘I wonder how old they were…’,” he chuckles. “The last few years have been tough, losing Lemmy was awful and I was sad that Jimmy Bain passed on a cruise ship. That distressed me quite a lot.”
While many veteran bands in such a position simply cease playing live and continue to record, UFO will no longer be releasing new music. Last year’s covers collection ‘The Salentino Cuts’ is set to become a signing-off point, though Mogg insists that however unlikely the prospect might seem – the singer is a lone strand of consistency throughout a 50-year history – he would have no problem with UFO continuing with a replacement.
The band’s current line-up – completed by keyboard player/second guitarist Paul Raymond, guitarist Vinnie Moore, drummer Andy Parker and bassist Rob De Luca – have of course been informed of Mogg’s decision.
“I’ve told the guys that this is how it is,” he says. “They know it’s my time to go and they know that they can do whatever they want to do without me but I don’t want to play live or make records any more, though having said that I might go on and do an album of my own. I’ll have to see how I feel about that.”
Of course UFO have either split up, retired or gone on hiatus several times before but Mogg is keen to make the distinction that next year’s dates don’t just mark the end of his touring commitments with UFO – for Phil, there will be no further concerts of any kind.
“For me, this is the end of my stint with UFO,” he clarifies. “This is a line in the sand. I’m suggesting we call the tour ‘Last Orders’, though I also like ‘The Bar Is Closing’. I’m also tempted to name it ‘The Drinks Are On Parker’,” he chuckles, referring to long-suffering sticksman Andy Parker.
You’ll have gathered that Mogg is not about to slash his wrists anytime soon. Of course, he is sad that the finishing line is now within sight but has had sufficient time to live with and process such a massive personal decision.
“Maybe the best word to use is ‘bittersweet’,” he concludes. “But my time has arrived and all that remains is to make sure that we have a good tour.”
Oriental metal pioneers ORPHANED LAND kicks off its North America tour this Saturday, May 5th in support of their critically acclaimed new album, Unsung Prophets & Dead Messiahs. The tour finds the heralded group as direct support to Faroese Viking metalists TYR, along with support from Ghost Ship Octavius and Aeternam.
The first stop on the tour is in Brooklyn, NY this Saturday, May 5th, at The Knitting Factory.
Vocalist KOBI FARHI commented, “We are so excited to be back to the USA, following our just released new album! Make sure you visit us on the road and check our new tunes! Who knows when we will be back next! “
05/05/18 Brooklyn, NY – Knitting Factory
05/06/18 Providence, RI – Alchemy
05/07/18 Montreal, QC – Corona Theatre
05/08/18 Quebec City, QC – Salle Multi
05/09/18 Toronto, ON – Velvet Underground
05/10/18 Columbus, OH – Al Rosa Villa
05/11/18 Joliet, IL – The Forge
05/12/18 Kansas City, MO – The Riot Room
05/13/18 Denver, CO – Marquis Theatre
05/14/18 Boise, ID – The Shredder
05/15/18 Vancouver, BC – Rickshaw Theatre
05/16/18 Seattle, WA – Studio Seven
05/17/18 Portland, OR – Hawthorne Theatre
05/18/18 Reno – TBA
05/19/18 Oakland, CA – Metro Opera House
05/20/18 Los Angeles, CA – Echoplex
05/21/18 San Diego, CA – Brick by Brick
05/22/18 Phoenix, AZ – Joe’s Grotto
05/24/18 Dallas, TX – Gas Monkey Bar & Grill
05/25/18 Austin, TX – Come and Take it Live!
05/26/18 New Orleans – TBA
05/27/18 Orlando, FL – The Haven
05/28/18 Atlanta, GA – The Masquerade (Hell)
05/29/18 Richmond, VA – Champion
05/30/18 Reading, PA – Reverb
“Gripping from front-to-back” (Metal Injection), ORPHANED LAND’s sixth album is fueled by righteous anger at the state of humanity in the present day. Veering from epic brutality to ornate theatricality, armed with an astonishing array of inspired melodies and euphoric crescendos, Unsung Prophets & Dead Messiahs is the finest and most powerful album the band has produced.
Featuring guest appearances from prog rock legend Steve Hackett (ex-Genesis) and metal luminaries Hansi Kürsch (Blind Guardian) and Tomas Lindberg (At The Gates/The Lurking Fear), Unsung Prophets & Dead Messiahs finds the band “at their creative peak, more confident and stronger then ever before”(Exclaim!).
I’ve been working hard for the past few years in the writing and making of this album. I collaborated with the right producer for it (Aaron Goldstein) and got world-class musicians to play with me on it. I feel deeply about it artistically and it feels like a debut for me. I can’t wait for you to hear it!
When you pre-order the album now on CD / Vinyl / Digital, you’ll be able to download 2 tracks instantly! They’re the opener and closer songs from the album. Such a tease.
When you support the album in a bigger way, not only do you get some exclusives, but you also encourage and mobilize this music to have even further reach. As an independent artist, I can’t get away from asking for your support; so if you are able, I will use it in the best way possible to get this record out and take this calling to be a songwriter and performer to the next level. Thank you!
Listen to one of the tunes, ‘In A Flash’, on YouTube now.
2. Hit The Ground
3. The Bell
5. North Country
7. Uncharted Waters
8. Good Lover
9. May I Have This Dance
10. In A Flash
About The Album
On Shadowlands, veteran troubadour Matt Epp embarks on a journey through the geographies of darkness within him, sending back transmissions of lush, haunted Americana that embrace the dualities of this human thing—love, light, and the absence of each. He traverses spiritual and physical worlds deftly, conjuring the twilight wilderness of his home with hazy, transcendental psychedelia (“North Country”), chasing muses on his road-worn Honda Shadow amidst incendiary roots rock (“Runaway”), floating through ghostly, glowing folk alongside mystical guides (“Uncharted Waters”), and raging against social and environmental injustice on the acerbic battle cry “Unnatural,” recalling Neil Young’s pointed activist anthems. Epp’s 10th album represents his first steps over the threshold in this odyssey, and its piano-led curtain closer, “In a Flash,” is a promise to continue fearlessly navigating the gathering tempests and crises of faith that define its world.
The corporeal helpers that brought Shadowlands to this plane—a rogues gallery of world-class tune-slingers—did so over fateful spring nights in the hills of Nashville, Tennessee at Dark Horse Recording. With Toronto pedal steel magician Aaron Goldstein at the producer’s helm, Epp’s award-winning songwriting is transformed, arriving with more powerful force than it ever has before, and blazing a new path for its author.
Recorded at Dark Horse Studio (Franklin TN)
Produced by Aaron Goldstein
Mixed by John Paul Peters, Private Ear (Winnipeg, MB)
Mastered by Gavin Lurssen, Lurssen Mastering (Los Angeles, CA)
CANADA SUMMER TOUR DATES
May 25 – Massie, ON @ Massie Hall
May 27 – Wakefield,QC @ Blacksheep
July 1 – Owen Sound, ON @ Kelso Amphitheatre; Canada Day headliner
July 13-15 – Courtenay, BC @ Vancouver Island Music Festival
July 19 – Vernon, BC @ Record City
July 20 – Kelowna, BC @ Sabine’s Salon
July 27-28 – Paris, ON @ Skylight Festival
Aug 3-5 – Lac Du Bonnet, MB @ Fire & Water Music Festival
Aug 10-12 – Ear Falls, ON @ Trout Forest Music Festival
Thank you, friends,
Spanish instrumental rockers Toundra release their new fifth studio album ‘Vortex today, following on from their previous record ‘IV’ which reached number 2 in the Spanish charts.
On the Wednesday the band played live on ‘Late Motiv’, the most important late night TV show in Spain, and tonight the band celebrate the release of the album with a special show at Vortex in Siegen, Germany.
Watch a clip from their TV appearance here: https://www.facebook.com/toundra/videos/10156486329455799/
‘Vortex’ has been receiving some fantastic reviews and you can find a selection of them below:
“expansive, emotive music, appealing to our hearts as much as our heads.” – Prog
“a bombardment of claustrophobia & ecstasy, often within the same song, Vortex is a breathtaking piece of work.” – Metal Hammer
“It’s inspiring, highly energetic, full of riffs, hooks, melody. What else do you need?” – Echoes & Dust
“a voyage of discovery in an enthralling album. Never heard of what the Spanish have to offer in terms of cutting edge rock before? Sit back, relax and turn it up loud.” – Louder Than War
Watch a video for the track ‘Kingston Falls’ here:
As mentioned previously, the title of the album is ‘Vortex’, as the band explain: “On September 19th in 2012 we arrived at a venue called ‘Vortex Surfer Musiklub’ in Siegen, a small town in Germany. We played there, the venue got packed and everything about that night, including the warm welcome from everybody working there, was incredible. We fell in love with that small venue and the house next to it where we slept that night.
“Since then, we played Vortex five or six times and there has always been that same great fond feeling from the people there. So, this upcoming album is called ‘Vortex’. We leave behind the roman numbers and want to use this as a way to thank all the promoters, people working in venues, labels, agencies, fans… and everyone who has helped us over the years to live this dream. We can’t wait for you to hear some of the music”
The first run of European tour dates were recently announced and tickets are on sale now.
04.05.18, VOID, Bordeaux, FR
05.05.18, Supersonic, Paris, FR
06.05.18, Kleine Zaal, Melkweg, NL
08.05.18, Usine, Geneva, CH
09.05.18, Dok, Gent, BE
10.05.18, Hoxton Square Bar, London, UK
12.05.18, Temple of Boom, Leeds, UK
13.05.18, Nice ‘n Sleazy, Glasgow, UK
14.05.18, Exchange, Bristol, UK
16.05.18, JUNGLE, Koln, DE
17.05.18, Keller Club, Stuttgart, DE
18.05.18, Rocas, Luxembourg, LU
19.05.18, Molotow, Hamburg, DE
20.05.18, KB18, Copenhagen, DK
23.05.18, BiNuu, Berlin, DE
24.05.18, Groovestation, Dresden, DE
25.05.18, Papirna, Plzen, CZ
26.05.18, A38, Budapest, HU
27.05.18, Viper Room, Vienna, AU
29.05.18, Le Farmer, Lyon, FR
30.05.18, Molotov, Marseille, FR
It has been an intense 3 years since the band got signed with Superball/Century Media in 2014, with whom they put out their most recent a lauded album, ¨IV¨, (January 2015), after the first 3 albums that were released independently. Since then the band has performed over 100 concerts in 17 different countries with their instrumental sound combining progressive and post rock making them one of the leaders in there genre.
According to a posting on the Facebook page of Anubis
We’re very excited to play these five shows in Europe. Ten years on from our first live show in Sydney – we’d never have believed we’d be doing this!
Each show has a different flavour, including a full performance of ‘A Tower of Silence’ at T’Blok and a 230503-era treat for France, culminating in a set at Loreley that we hope matches the occasion! We can’t wait to meet you all again.