kMNR...June 29, 2006 ~ In This Issue:


System of a Down Rock The 'Dome Once Again

Hardly a year after System of a Down came through Calgary (which may explain why the show was NOT sold out), the Armenian-American quartet from L.A. returned with just as much intensity as previously.

Much like the show last fall, it focused on the latest material from Mezmerize and moreso on Hypnotize since it's release late last year. They weren't all about new songs though as plenty of tunes from their monster-hit release Toxicity and even their self-titled debut were present through-out the evening. However, not a single rare track from Steal This Album would be present.

Starting with Soldier Side Intro followed by Attack and B.Y.O.B., it was an immediate indication of how the night would play out; intense heavy rock with the ever-present oddities that SOAD regularly deliver. It wasn't the cleanest start (they lacked flair and symmetry which could be attributed to the technical issues), but it took only a few songs for them to get it together. Aside from their obvious talent, fans in attendance deserve some credit as they were very much into the performance, singing along, moshing and generally active.

Bassist Shavo Odadjian was easily the most active member on stage, often running across the stage, playing to the crowd, smoking the occasional joint and to complete the show, tossing his bass from behind the drum kit. Daron Malakian was hilariously animated in between guitar licks and was the most vocal while singer Serj Tankian loosened up after shedding his jacket. John Dolmayan showed little emotion but the trade-off was his meticulous drumming.

This was likely the last time Calgarians will see SOAD as they recently announced an impending hiatus later this year. There were no indications of such by their actions on this night. It was purely about cranking out non-stop music as it should always be. The cheering in the concourse afterwards was indication of how fans felt about the show, and justifiably so.

The Bouncing Souls Deliver Their Gold Record

It's been fifteen long years since New Jersey's Bouncing Souls released their very first seven inch EP, entitled Ugly Bill. Thirteen albums (one of which is live), five more EPs, a double DVD set and even three split releases (each with Weston, Zero Zero and Anti-Flag) later and they return with the aptly titled release, The Gold Record.

This new record proves that these guys are one of the hardest working punk rock bands out there. It is solid from beginning to end with rarely a subtle moment in between (save for the opening of a few tracks). Starting with it's very own somewhat title track, The Gold Song and the follow-up So Jersey (which seemingly pays tribute to their hometown), you get a sense of why this band is so loved by it's fans. The music is upbeat and enjoyable in a genre that some would expect abrasive and in-your-face music.

What Bouncing Souls album wouldn't be complete with a song that's outright political or at the very least making a strong social commentary? Enter Letter From Iraq, a song that weaves a tale of a U.S. troop that is engaged in "heavy fire", ending with the all-too-familiar death of a soldier. These guys have never been afraid to take aim at serious issues and this is no exception.

When all is told, this is an enjoyable disc. If you're hoping to hear them enter new territory, look elsewhere. Bouncing Souls fans know what they like and they deliver the goods.

The Miniatures Hit The Mark On Dead Flowers, But Not Always

The Miniatures have a name that almost sounds like they should be a Brit-rock band. On the contrary (unless you consider Canada still part of commonwealth), as this quartet hail from Kitchener, Ontario. Their 2004 debut album, Coma Kid, received a fair bit of recognition and they're hoping that Dead Flowers will continue to build on that success.

The record starts off on decent footing with Any Day Now, a fairly simple dance/pop-rock tune that at times sounds a tad like Franz Ferdinand minus the accents. Many of the songs are just as upbeat but the peculiar point is that the album seems to be split between basic rock songs with good hooks and cookie-cutter radio friendly pop songs. Curious is a particular example of the latter point. Funny enough, it's followed by Sleaze Radio which takes direct shots, claiming "music is a little whore". At least they own up by also stating "We're to blame."

The record has some strong points with catchy songs (see Loosen Your Grip), some even showing a glimpse of experimentation with electro/synth guitar effects, as in No Cure. It's too bad that you have to sift through some of the lower points to get to those songs more worthy.

Lollapalooza Announces Official Line-Up

OK, last year Lollapalooza finally pulled it off, keeping the festival to just one weekend in Chicago and being a success both musically and financially. This year, they bring the winning formula back for the three-day festival on August 4th, 5th and 6th and the line-up is HUGE. So, grab a coffee, a beer, maybe even a day's worth of food because literally, this line-up is huge. Here we go:

<takes deep breath>

Red Hot Chili Peppers, Kanye West, Wilco, Death Cab For Cutie, The Raconteurs, The Flaming Lips, Ween, Queens of the Stone Age, Common, Ryan Adams, Sonic Youth, Violent Femmes, Thievery Corporation, Sleater-Kinney, Blues Traveller, Broken Social Scene, Coheed and Cambria, The Secrect Machines, eels, Panic! At The Disco, She Wants Revenge, The Dresden Dolls, Reverend Horton Heat, The Smoking Popes, Stars, Blackalicious, Editors, Hard-Fi, Calexico, Nada Surf, Feist, Aqualung, The Go! Team, Wolfmother, Sparta, The Subways, Blue October, Living Things, The New Amsterdams, 30 Seconds To Mars, Rainer Maria and many, MANY more. (I had to be a little selective...there's just so MANY acts already confirmed and more are apparently to come.)

Not confirmed is the previously rumoured Smashing Pumpkins. I suspect that either they're too busy recording their come-back album, or Billy Corgan's plan has failed miserably. I hope for Alan's sake, it's not the latter.

New Plan For Movie On The Late Jeff Buckley

At around this time last year, I reported that there was plans in the works to make a movie about the late Jeff Buckley and his father Tim. The plan was for producer Train Houston to film the movie based on the David Browne book, Dream Brother: The Lives & Music of Jeff and Tim Buckley.

That project has since been scrapped and a new biopic on Jeff alone is now in the works. The movie will be written and directed by Brian Jun and produced by Mary Guibert (Buckley's mother) and Michelle Sy. Guibert has refused to be a part of any movie idea in the past as she felt her son "would have nothing to do with a feature film" about him. She changed her mind after realizing that anyone can make a movie about him so why not have control over what ends up on the screen?

She has also been impressed by recent biopics Ray, Walk The Line and Finding Neverland (who Sy was executive producer for) which undoubtedly helped sway her decision.

The movie hasn't entered production yet so no details on what to expect in the way of talent or release date.

Alternative Rock Tales of the 20th Century ~ Part II: Iggy Pop

Last week I started this special segment based on the Alan Cross book, 20th Century Rock and Roll - Alternative Rock. As promised, we continue this week with Part II which highlights the illustrious career of Iggy Pop.

Iggy is probably best known for this song Lust For Life (which was featured in the Train Spotting soundtrack), his sickly, scrawny shirtless torso and the scars he bears on it from years of mutilating himself on stage.

Early in his career when Iggy was drumming for pop band The Iguanas (who would open for various Motown artists), he earned himself some studio work for Motown. It's suspected that he drummed on the Shangri-Las 1964 hit, Leader of the Pack and that a young Billy Joel played the piano parts although if this is true, they would have never been in the studio at the same time.

Lastly, in highschool, Jimmy Osterberg (Iggy's real name) was alcohol and drug free and was nick-named "Horse Dick" for his allegedly 11 inch penis.

Next Week; David Bowie

Big Surprise; Slash Will Not Be Involved In GNR

There was an apparent rumour that Slash would be performing with Guns N' Roses last month in New York. Not surprisingly, he has dispelled this rumour. It's a no-brainer really, since he and Axl Rose are not on good terms, what with the lawsuit and all.

What Slash IS doing is working on the sophmore Velvet Revolver disc Libertad. You'll also hear some of his work on The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift.

In proper fashion, Rose was arrested in Sweeden for fighting with a security guard at a hotel party after fighting with a woman and smashing shite in the reception area. Rose also bit a guard on the leg and threatened a cop. Classy.

Kittie To Start Work On Fourth Release Next Month

For some reason, I thought this Canadian female metal band was long since finished. Not true, as Kittie have announced they'll start recording their fourth album next month.

They reportedly have sixteen songs ready and will employ the work of producer Jack Ponti (Bon Jovi, Skid Row, Alice Cooper) who's been retired for fifteen years. Mixing the new disc is Kevin Shirley (who's worked with Slayer, Iron Maiden and Silverchair).

Founding members (and sisters) Morgan Lander and Mercedes Lander are now joined by bassist Trish Doan and guitarist Tara McLeod. The new record will be released on the band's own Kiss Of Infamy label.

In Stores Next Week

I think it's fitting that the post-humous Johnny Cash release American V: A Hundred Highways is released on Independance Day. Much like previous American recordings, it was produced by Rick Rubin and contains at least one cover, Gordon Lightfoot's If You Could Read My Mind. It also features a song entitled Rose Of My Heart which is most likely about his loving late wife.

I suppose since America stands for all things commercial, it's also fitting that Paris Hilton releases her debut record, Stars Are Blind. 'Nuff said?

OK, let's come back to earth to finish this off. Rise Against return with yet another punk record that will likely be adored by their fans. The Sufferer and the Witness will likely be chock-full of political and social commentary.

ChartAttack's Weekly Reviews

This weekend is Canada Day. So, HAPPY CANADA DAY!!! As many Canadians do on this weekend, rocking out to music is deftinitely one of the primary activities. So, what new material to get, you may ask? You might have a better idea if you read the reviews the staff writers at ChartAttack have written. Reviews include Billy Talent's sophmore release, Death By Sexy from Eagles Of Death Metal, Lostprophets' Liberation Transmission, Dusk And Summer from Dashboard Confessionals and many more.

Upcoming Calgary Shows

June 30, 2006 The Frosted Tipz, Cadence Weapon, The Blacktop Broken City
July 01, 2006 The Agnostic Mountain Gospel Choir, Shane Ghostkeeper, Woodpigeon HiFi Club
July 02, 2006 THOR Broken City
July 03, 2006 She Wants Revenge Whiskey
July 04, 2006 Front Line Assembly The Warehouse
July 04, 2006 Ryan Bourne, Amos Garret, Steve Jevne Broken City
July 05, 2006 Vince Neil Cowboys
July 06, 2006 The Philosopher Kings Coca-Cola Stage
July 06, 2006 The Populars, Hot Awesome, Brittle Siren Broken City
July 07, 2006 Dashboard Confessionals, City And Colour, Say Anything, John Ralston Jack Singer Concert Hall
July 07, 2006 Default Coca-Cola Stage
July 07, 2006 The Brenda Vaqueros, Knucklehead, The Cryptomaniacs Broken City
July 08, 2006 Nelly Furtado Coca-Cola Stage
July 08, 2006 Moses Mays and the Funk Family Orchestra, Lynn Olagundoye HiFi Club
July 08, 2006 Jon Rae and The River, Andrew Wedderburn Broken City
July 09, 2006 Bubba Sparxxx Coyotes
July 09, 2006 Glass Tiger The Roadhouse
July 10, 2006 Theory of a Deadman Coca-Cola Stage
July 10, 2006 Stompin Tom Connors Cowboys
July 10, 2006 Metric Whiskey
July 11, 2006 Sharp Like Knives, Windom Earle Broken City
July 11, 2006 The Pants Situation, Mossy Rock HiFi Club
July 12, 2006 Gino Vannelli Coca-Cola Stage
July 13, 2006 Petunia, The Turncoats Broken City
July 13, 2006 Corb Lund Coca-Cola Stage
July 14, 2006 The Rocky Fortune, The Attics and Children of the Great Northern Muskeg Broken City
July 14, 2006 Our Lady Peace Coca-Cola Stage
July 15, 2006 Our Mercury, The Martyr Index, Geronimo HiFi Club
July 15, 2006 Hedley Coca-Cola Stage
July 16, 2006 Matt Mays & El Torpedo, The Trews Coca-Cola Stage
July 18, 2006 Joel & The Last of the Neighbors, Pressure Kill Common Style, Ghosthouse HiFi Club
July 18, 2006 AA Sound System, Five O'Clock Charlie Broken City

~~ kMNR v2006.124 ~~