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Larkin Poe Sheds Light on Blues

In 2014 sisters Megan and Rebecca Lovell debuted into the roots rock, also known as Americana, scene with their album Reskinned. Last year, they were nominated for a Blues Music Award for Best Emerging Artist.

The duo has been working on finessing their sound by opening for Keith Urban’s Graffiti You tour. Elvis Costello even hand picked the sisters to open for his tour, alongside powerhouse names like Costello and Urban, it would be hard to not improve.

The improvement, shows in their new album Venom & Faith, releasing on November 9th. With 10 tracks the duo showcases their blend of Americana, with deeper elements of blues alongside horn and hip-hop elements. The track Fly Like An Eagle incorporates the hip-hop and semi-electronic elements, showcasing Megan and Rebeccas strong points.

Venom & Faith is not the album I would normally gravitate toward because I don’t enjoy country music, but Larkin Poe is different. The seedy folk is brought to a new light in the new album, by blending familiar sounds.

Larkin Poe will be playing at the Bowery Ballroom in New York City on November 19th.

Photo provided by Robbie Klein

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'I Hope You're Happy'-Blue October review

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Photo provided by Reybee Inc

Blue October will release their ninth studio album on August 17 with a revamped sound. The Texas-based band contains Matt Noveskey bass, brothers Jeremy and Justin Furstenfled drummer and frontman and multi-instrumentalist Ryan Delahoussaye.

            For new fans, the alternative beats in the background and ‘happier’ lyrics aren’t shocking. But, for fans who have followed Blue October since 1998, ‘I Hope You’re Happy’ is everything besides dark, grungy and twisted lyrics from the bands past.

            Although Blue October is also having a documentary following their seedy moments, Furstenfled’s first studio album captures a mature sound. ‘I hope You’re Happy’ captures the somber direction the band is heading towards. With production control remaining in-house, the true sound Blue October wishes to follow can happen. After their release of ‘Home’ in 2016, this new studio album wishes to introduce to new and old fans.

            The new album features 12 tracks, Furstenfled also took ‘I Hope You’re Happy’ to new into a brand new cheerful vibe. If you have heard the song ‘Into the Ocean’ you know that the sound is usually, in a way, depressing. Furstenfled has gone in the opposite direction, following the alternative beats that are in almost every alternative song in 2018. For fans of Bleachers, this album will have you begging for more.

            Many tracks mix the seedy background with cheerful lyrics and beats, ‘Daylight’ does a fantastic job of mixing Justin Furstenfled’s voice and showcases the new direction in the opening track. Another interesting track on the album is ‘Your Love is Like a Car Crash’ these beats evoke a dreamy element to Blue October’s sound, truly this track captures the bands maturity with this in house album. Creating a new stepping stone is hard, but Blue October pushed the envelope and even added a snippet from their past with ‘Colors Collide’.

            ‘I Hope You’re Happy’ is the perfect album for 2018, it shows all sides of what is currently going on in the world and shows how no matter the past a new light can shine through. To watch Blue October's 'I Hope You're Happy' music video click here.

 

Keep Your Brain Strong

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Photo provided by Pixabay

 

Post was written by Julie Morris

Henry Ford said, “Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young.” Whoever said you can’t teach an old dog new tricks obviously wasn’t familiar with how the human brain works. While how we learn often changes as we age, it’s absolutely possible—regardless of how many birthdays we’ve celebrated—to learn and master many new skills.

 

Are you looking to add a few new skills to your repertoire, whether online or with a group of friends? Try these suggestions:

 

Learn to dance. If you’re a bit nervous about strutting your stuff in public—whether you fancy salsa or hip-hop—there are plenty of online tutorials you can try. As The Treehouse points out, “One of the best benefits of dancing is that you can do it in the privacy of your own home (provided you have space) or in a classroom setting, which can help you socialize. It’s also a great way to get in shape and learn about your own body’s abilities and limits in a healthy way.” Dancing is all about building confidence and self-assurance; it also helps improve muscle tone and core strength.

 

Improve your public speaking skills. Join Toastmasters, an international organization dedicated to developing strong leaders and confident public speakers. Take an online class or course at your local community college; learning to clearly communicate plays dividends in spades, especially if you’re still working.

 

Cultivate your culinary prowess. Cooking is an artform with infinite possibilities based on flavors combined in myriad ways. Whether you’re one step above boiling water or curious about other cultures and cuisines, cooking shows, classes, and demos can pave the way for fun gustatory adventures.

 

Try a new language. With the explosion of language learning programs, like Babbel and Rosetta Stone, you’ve got plenty of ways to increase your lingual skills. Researchers know that language learning helps your brain remain flexible, and even helps it pick up other new skills.

 

Pick up a musical instrument. Music lifts the spirit and has the power to evoke a wide range of emotions. Studies show that playing an instrument can increase your IQ and improve your memory, too. It’s true that the initial challenge of learning a new instrument is fraught with frustration, but after you’ve learned the basics and gained a bit of confidence and a comfort level, you can explore and experiment with sounds you create.

 

Channel your inner artist. The value of artistic skills lies in the technical abilities they cultivate to create something beautiful. Whether you’re exploring digital illustration, drawing, or painting, start by sketching subject matter that interests you. The best way to develop this skill is through plenty of practice by following online videos or even taking in-person art classes.

 

Increase your technical prowess. Technology offers a million subsets—from learning to build and modify computers to improving your skills in basic coding.

 

Have no programming experience at all? Try Scratch, which is a fairly simple programming language that allows users to create games, interactive stories, and web animations. Developed by MIT students and aimed at kids, it’s also the perfect introduction for older folks with little background in programming and coding. Looking to increase your “hardcore” tech skills in HTML/CSS, Javascript, Python, CMD Line, Python, and SQL? Try the very interactive Codecademy, which offers great interactive lessons.

 

Learn how to apply those newfound coding skills. Once you’ve mastered the basics of coding, you can move onto more practical applications, like building websites, designing and creating apps, or programming robots. Coding opens up a world of possibilities for job growth and increased earning potential, too.

 

So many choices!

 

Pursuing new hobbies and skills is a wonderful way to keep your mind and brain agile. They also benefit people—including seniors—in addiction recovery by redirecting behaviors in positive ways, helping make new connections, and keeping the brain’s reward system healthy. With the plethora of possibilities online that allow you to learn something new when you’ve got the time, there’s no reason not to take advantage of the free courses on a wide range of subjects!

The Mountain Carol Evokes Mystery into their Sound

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The Mountain Carol’s sound is meant to bring a sense of divine mystery, energy and secrecy to the air. The bands origin is Saranac, New York, but little is known about the band’s members and roles.

What is known, is that their music is dedicated to a celestial energy. The band began with ‘…a great endeavor starts, with a moonlit stroke of genius sent down from the heavens, rolling through the mountains and into the ready ears of the inspired,’ says The Mountain Carol.

With the skill of portraying mystery through sound waves is talent, live music shows raw emotions, but The Mountain Carol has been able to encompass this air of mystery into the veins of the band.

Drawing inspiration from art and traveling, the band believes that ‘music is simply a vessel for the ghosts to speak through, we invoke them through song and they speak their hallowed words through our mortal lips. This is why music is important,’ says The Mountain Carol.

On June 1, 2018, the band released their EP Starkiller and the Banshees a 7-track album that has a fusion of ambient chill alternative and psychedelic synth pop. Creating an ambiguous sound that is an edition to the eclectic work of the band. Along with their EP they also released a transcendent visual with a new music video to ‘The Party’s Over’.

The Mountain Carol plans to continue to grow during the year of 2018. For more information about The Mountain Carol visit their bandcamp. Check out the questions from the interview with The Mountain Carol.

 

· 
How did The Mountain Carol get started?

The Mountain Carol started the way many great endeavors start, with a moonlit stroke of genius sent down from the heavens, rolling through the mountains and into the ready ear of the inspired.

 

·  Who plays which instrument(s)?

A magician never tells their secrets, and we like to keep a certain air of mystery around the roles in the band. We feel that all of our contributions ultimately come from a higher power, so to attribute individual credits is almost doing a disservice to the Divine Source that our songs come from.

 

·  What artists influence you the most? Where else do you find your inspiration?

Art is everywhere, is it not? Therefore, artists must be everywhere. We pull our inspiration from a timeless well found at the end of a road traveled by few but crossed over by many.

 

·  Why is music important to the band?

Music is simply a vessel for the ghosts to speak through, we invoke them through song and they speak their hallowed words through our mortal lips. This is why music is important.

 

·  You just released your debut full-length Starkiller and the Banshees; as well as a number of music videos - what's your plan for the rest of 2018?

Our plan is to continue to stoke the eternal flame, to grow our flock, and keep an ear to the mountains for more messages to relay.

 

·  What does a day to day look like for you as a band, and as individuals?

As a band, every day we are simply lying in wait, in the most scholarly and legal sense of the term. As individuals, every day is an exercise in the art of appreciating luxury and decadence.

 

·  What has been the biggest learning experience as a band?

Traveling these lands and speaking to various press outlets and journalists has been an eye opening experience for everyone involved.

 

·  Favorite song to play live?
Whatever song we find ourselves in a tangle with at that moment has to be the favorite, that's the only way to best it.

Life on The Farm

Before I begin my personal recap of Bonnaroo, I would like to explain while Volume 11 has been un-active for a small period of time. At the beginning of my final semester in college, I was physically assaulted while out with my friends. This is something I do not mind to talk (and will if you ask), but I needed to focus on two things after that incident: graduating from the University of Oklahoma and figuring out my move to NYC. My thoughts were cloudy and therefore would not have added quality content to Volume 11. I truly believe that quality over quantity is truly what matters-especially in today's media atmosphere. This fall I will be attending Columbia University for the graduate journalism program. I am honored and thrilled to focus on branding myself as a journalist and improving my writing. I will have plenty of time to continue to do what Volume 11 does but in New York City. With this being said, enjoy my recap of Bonnaroo and look out for more Volume 11 posts in the near future. 

Life on The Farm-Manchester, Tennessee

 Bonnaroo first greeted me after 7 hours on the road. I cracked open my eyes and saw an interstate sign gleaming in orange fluorescent lettering that read 'Bonnaroo Traffic ahead'. The entire trip my heart had been fluttering-I had been looking forward to Bonnaroo since the pre-sale tickets went on sale. Finally, I was a few hours away from unpacking a Toyota SUV, setting up camp and spending four days with good friends. Bonnaroo was just one of my many firsts during those days-my first time to camp, first festival, first time without a shower for days, first dreadlock and first time feeling truly alive.

After my group pulled into camp Clark Griswald the magic of Bonnaroo set in. I truly was in a field in the middle of Tennessee about to hear amazing artists, with a one of a kind lineup and see it all from a unique perspective. My own perspective. I decided to go all in with the experience and live each set to the fullest. Bonnaroo is a place where no one is judged and where good vibes and high fives go hand in hand.

Laying on my back at The Other stage while wearing a neon pink American Apparel skater dress, butterfly wings, and kaleidoscope glasses I noticed truly how much music I was being exposed too. I could hear That Tent play a band with many fans singing along, I could hear frogs gurgling in the woods, I felt the grass beneath my back and the clouds in the night sky gently float by. Even the trees glistened peaceful colors of lavender, shamrock, carrot and bubblegum pink. This festival was geared towards lovers of music, gypsy souls, free spirits, wanderers, lovers and most of all music junkies.  

Explaining Bonnaroo to the people closest to me has been difficult to put into words. It didn't matter how far my campsite was from center roo or how close I was to each concert set possible. It was about opening every pore of your body to the beauty and magic that Bonnaroo can bring your soul. Hearing each morning someone over a loudspeaker say 'Good Morning Bonnaroo' is the best sound in the world. Bonnaroo is full of endless possibilities. Go experience it for yourself. 

The Nectars, East Coast band redefines alternative music

Stepping out of the distinguishable daffodil colored NYC taxi, I quickly entered The Delancey located in New York City. Under the subdued red glow of the lights, I ducked into the micro-venue to speak with The Nectars. 

The Nectars are an up and coming alternative punk band from the New Jersey suburbs. The band consists of Jessica Kenny (vocalist), Jon Paul (bass/vocals), Mike Montalbano (drummer) and Michael Baron (guitar/vocals). Each member has been practicing music from a young age, resulting in an obvious passion for what they do and how they create it. 

With a niche sound that has incorporated alternative, punk, rock and funk The Nectars have a solid show with a thunderous stage presence. Drawing inspiration form Nirvana, Paramore, The Killers and The Strokes the audience didn't really know what to expect to emerge from Kenny's mouth. 

The Nectars did not disappoint, especially when Kenny sang 'I Want It', their newest single which evokes the bands quirky acid rock feel. Truly, defining a one sound for The Nectars cannot be done, due to the bands ability to combine every sound into one cohesive unit. 

Personally when Kenny belted out a King Krule cover, 'Easy, Easy' I knew The Nectars will evolve into a well-known band. Perhaps along the way influencing other bands along the way. If you have a chance to see The Nectars live in the New Jersey and New York City area-do not miss it. 

Another amazing moment is when the band performed one of their favorite songs live 'Tired', the presence and ability to show the passion while being professional and sing a song was delightful to experience. 

Before the show I had the chance to interview The Nectars, heres some of what was talked about during Volume 11's interview. 

Volume 11: Being from Jersey and getting into the NYC music scene how do you distinguish yourself and make The Nectars unique and known?

Michael-I don’t think we focus on staying away from what others are doing, it is more of doing what we want to do. I guess we kind of figure out the stuff we like. We stick to our Jersey roots for sure and that distinguishes us I guess.

Mike-We also play any shows we can get, kind of seperates us too. Some bands are picky about that, but we just want to play.

Volume 11: Where do you draw inspiration from in your songs?

Jessica-Each individual member has different influences, but when it comes to the band I always say Nirvana. Wolf Alice and Courtney Barnett are what influence me.

 

Volume 11: What is a goal for the band in the near and distant future?

Jessica-Definitely playing at festivals.

Michael-We have new songs coming out every month, we just released a new song called ‘I Want It’ and releasing our debut album towards the end of April. We are just trying to get all this stuff out, play as many shows as possible and get ourselves out there as far as possible.

Jessica-Definitely trying to get more people into The Nectar Fam.

Volume 11: As a female vocalist, what tips do you have for other female vocalist andhow to get into the industry as a whole?

Jessica-I have been doing it my whole life, people ask me how do you do what you do. It is the only thing that doesn’t give me anxiety is singing. If you have a passion just do it and don’t think about doing anything else, but doing it. Just nurture your craft and don’t care what others think. Just do it.

Volume 11: What challenges has the band faced and how have you overcame those challenges?

Jessica-There is always going to be some sort of rejection. Not everyone is going to like you, follow you or get what you are doing. I wouldn’t say it is a challenge, but I mean you just have to not give a fuck and keep doing whatever the fuck you want. Don’t expect everyone to love you all the time.

Michael-Other people in the industry try to define who you are and what yoru sound is as a band. You just kind of have to silent that shit and just do whatever feels right to us and spread our message the way we see it.

Volume 11: How does it feel to be recognized and have people know who you are?

Jessica-It feels fucking awesome. This (The Nectars) is everything to us. To feel llove and have people reciprocate the love is powerful and beautiful.

Michael- This is what we spend our energy on and spend our time on. It is the best thing.

For more information on The Nectars, follow them @TheNectarsMusic on Twitter and Instagram. Their music is also available to listen to on Spotify. 

Contribute to Volume 11

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Have you ever had a slight interest in music journalism? Do you enjoy reading or learning more about the music industry? 

Volume 11 is looking to expand the content through freelance writers, photographers and designers. The goal of Volume 11 is to highlight the unheard stories of the music industry. This can be unveiled in many areas such as: photography, poems, graphic design, make up, fashion and of course being an artist. 

If you are interested in applying or contributing to Volume 11 email chandlerkidd95@gmail.com for more details. 

"Smooth seas don't create skilled sailors" 

 

Dude York-Half Time for The Holidays Review

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Dude York

Home for The Holidays

Thanksgiving has passed meaning that Christmas season is in full swing. If you are anything like me, Christmas music isn't my cup of tea per say. Personally it is probably due to hearing "Silent Night" and "Jingle Bell Rock" around 1,000 times while walking through the mall. 

For those who don't enjoy the typical cheery Christmas music, Seattle based punk pop band  Dude York  has revamped holiday music with their alternative album Half Time for the Holidays. This album strays far from traditional and brings a modern take on the holiday season as a whole. 

Half Time for the Holidays opens with an 'o so relatable' track titled "Break Up Holiday" which has subtle sounds of jingle bells (like most of the album) in the background. By incorporating the subtle sounds of jingle bells, the album feels more like a rock holiday and less like a cheery Christmas album. This track also tells the worst part about the holidays-running into an ex lover. Making this album more relatable to the generation z babies. 

At times this album brings to life some sweetness especially with tracks like "The Greatest Gift is You" or "Long Distance Christmas", but in the end the album is very original. Original meaning that only Dude York could create it and pull it off. 

What makes the album even more charismatic is through the utilization of the vocals between guitarist Peter Richards and bassist Clare England. Each sing equally throughout each track and the entirety of the album. 

Of course the album hits on new and improved versions of "Silent Night" and "Jingle Bell Rock", but what makes Dude York so catchy is their unique sound. Basically this band sounds like a mix of Weezer and the Ramones with their punchy guitar sounds. The melodies and vocals truly kick it up a notch also. 

Dude York simply has created the perfect chill rock holiday album. Half Time for The Holidays is on the other end of traditional and makes sure every holiday emotion is evoked through their sound. 

The album can be streamed on Bandcamp, but most importantly Dude York is touring at the moment. On November 28th they will be stopping in Norman, Oklahoma at The Opolis for a show. 

Sawyer Fredericks talks About New Album

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Sawyer Fredericks

Volume 11

Sitting in the green room next to Norman, Oklahoma’s well-known micro-venue, The Opolis, Volume 11 met with Sawyer Fredericks, the season 8 winner of “The Voice”.

When Fredericks was on “The Voice” he was just 16 years old, now two years later he still wears his hair long just like in the show.

As he sat on the couch in the green room he wore, denim skinny jeans, a graphic black tee and next to him sat a fedora.

During the show, he said he got his first hat at 12 years old and has been wearing them since.

 

In the green room Fredericks was laid back and comfortable, this same energy carried to his performance. He sounds like Ray LaMontagne, but he dresses like Jimi Hendrix with a fedora twist.

Fredericks belts out wailing folk rock notes along with crisp guitar sounds that mixed beautifully with the cold fall night in Norman, Oklahoma.

With his band Unfounded, Fredericks is about to release his new album “Hide Your Ghost”. Here is what Sawyer Fredericks had to say to Volume 11.

 

Vol11: How has your journey changed since starting out?

SF: "I started off doing open mics and started doing performances at farmers markets,

I kept doing performances, its how the Voice found me. They scouted me out on YouTube.

                 

Vol11: How is working with family?

SF: "It's definitely hard being away from family while you are on tour, I really enjoy keeping family with me and genuinely like and being around"

 

Vol11: Tell me about your life in a small town located in upstate New York?

SF: “When I think of home I think of the farm that I live on which doesn't ever really change.

Every time I get back from the tour I am always happy to help with work on the farm"

  

Vol11: Is being on tour different than what you expected?

SF: "It is kind of what I expected. There is stuff you don't realize, we try to conserve the waste. We realized how much waste you produce while you’re on tour. You go through all these plastic water bottles and everything"

 

 

Vol11: What is the next step?

SF: "We've been working on Hide Your Ghost album, it is completely finished, it just needs to be mixed and mastered. After that we are just going to be dong more touring and performing"

Vol 11: Any advice?

SF: “It is actually some advice that Pharrell gave me while I was on the show. It was ‘don’t read the comments’, he meant don't read any of the comments because, any of the comments can get into your head and you can start catering to the audience and not yourself”

 

Space4Lease Drifting EP Review

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OKC based band Space4Lease released their new EP Drifting on September 22. Composed of members Grayson Hamm (keys/vocal/), Walt Blythe (guitar), Brandon Brewer (bass/vocals) and Wes Belk (drums). The genre bending band never disappoints fans and new listeners with tracks that evoke emotions reminding listeners of the trials and tribulations of all relationships. 

Drifting features five raw tracks conveying the raw emotion of love, relationships and falling in love in graceful lyrics and elegant musicality. Along with their exquisite musical talent the mixture of keys helps listeners feel in a place of atmospheric bliss. Often times reminding of that concert moment in which everything appears to be un-real, at times Space4Lease can transcend that emotionally. 

Space4Lease provides a though behind every psychedelic indie groove note-mixing tones with keys, guitar riffs and notes that sound as if it were a love lullaby. Lead singer Grayson Hamms vocals will Drift listeners away in not only that track, but others such as Lately with melodic vocals opening ear canals across the nation.

A personal favorite along with one that many can relate too is I Tried Calling focusing on the problems that occur within every relationship and capturing the emotion of what it feels like when a relationship is over. A bittersweet moment captured through music, knowing that a relationship is over, but not yet knowing when the next person may come along. 

Space4Lease is currently on tour with dates listed below. To listen to their new EP it is available for streaming on bandcamp, itunes and other major streaming platforms. 

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Opinion: Flaming Lips+Mac Demarco Concert Review

The Flaming Lips+Mac Demarco concert was an opportunity that my peer Alexa Ace invited me to through Gold Hand Girls, in no way was I there for Volume 11. This is a personal review (hence why I stated Opinion in the headline) 

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Wayne Coyne

With Gold Hand Girls

 

Nothing screams I'm Wayne Coyne more than appearing on stage wearing: a full red pant suit, adorned with a black breast plate, a plastic gold dollar sign necklace, an eye patch with glitter and a tail. After 34 years of being the frontman for the Oklahoma based band The Flaming Lips nothing could shock fans, or could it?

Then Wayne disappeared stage right after a balloon popping frenzy during Race For The Prize. Suddenly, as if parting the Red Sea, Wayne was riding a neon unicorn singing There Should Be Unicorns while tossing glitter in the air. 

Through his friendship with Miley Cyrus, Wayne Coyne was able to showcase his traditional pysch pop sound that is The Flaming Lips on the album Oczy Mlody which was released in 2017. Reminding psychedelic lovers where there love started perhaps, with the Flaming Lips. 

As the venue continue to explode with confetti and rainbow colored lights, Wayne reemerges on stage with a huge silver balloon reading "FUCK YEAH DALLAS" into a crazed crowd of fellow Flaming Lips fans. Some fans wore dinosaurs on top of their heads, others gazed into the colored lights in awe and one fan even wore a Fred Flinstone outfit.

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Throughout the two hour show fans, including myself, were reminded how love can travel throughout a colorful rock galaxy-especially when Wayne himself emerged in a hamster ball belting David Bowies "Space Oddity". Leaving the fans in awe and a few in tears. 

The concert was filled with a mix of the old and new Flaming Lips drawing in a crowd of all ages-it was even a young girls first show. After the concert she was seen picking up confetti and throwing it in the air. Wayne ended the setlist under an inflatable rainbow singing "Do You Realize". Telling the audience to tell someone you love the magical words "I love You" 

I left the magical Flaming Lips ride with my life changed and confetti in my eyeball. A night I wouldn't regret. 

Flock of Pigs Debuts Swine Flu

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Grubby and messy imply the metaphor ‘pig pen’ but, not for Norman band Flock of Pigs. The ‘pig pen’ refers to the living room where life gets real Joe Lee, OU music performance senior and Flock of Pigs violist and vocalist said.

 

“I think pig pen is appropriate we’re a little dirty, not literally dirty but its portrayed in our show. We aren’t trying to go for a clean cut image that’s not us,” Lee said.

 

The band is composed of Lee; Patrick Richardson, bassist; Nick Lovatto, drums and OU sociology junior; Riley Richardson, trombone; Ben Renfrow, guitarist and OU sociology senior; and Wyatt Helms, who plays keys and clarinet.

 

The Flock first performed at Norman Music Festival in April 2016. The band has a hip-hop, reggae and rock 'n' roll influence.

 

The band will release its new EP "Swine Flu," featuring six unique songs, and will play at the Opolis Friday, Aug. 25 at 10 p.m. Volume 11  had a chance to sit down and talk with the band. Here’s what they had to say.

 

Q: What is new with this album "Swine Flu?"

Lee: “We got the inspiration from a friend. We were at Norman Music Festival, and when we are all together, we flock together. They made a comment about 'Oh, the swine flu is here.' It kind of just stuck. We are also kind of just dirty and sick. It just made sense to name the EP that.”

Patrick Richardson: “We're the pigs. The music is infectious.” 

 

Q: How have you been able to distinguish yourself?

Lee: “We just want people to express themselves, people identify with that. Everyone wants to have fun, dance and get down.”

Renfrow: “I've been in bands for a long time, but one thing I have noticed from being in this band that I have enjoyed is that people seem to enjoy our shows because they want to have fun. A lot of times people stand there, listen and absorb instead of actively participating. Just as if you are going to a party and want to have a fun Friday night, I feel like we give that good vibe as we want to have fun.”

 

Q: If you guys could tell yourselves what you know now compared to a year ago, what would that be?

Renfrow: “We've gone through a lot. We played like 50 shows. That’s like one a week. We're very busy. Half of us go to school. Half of us have careers. We also have something driven by passion. We have had a lot of trials at an individual and collective level. There is a morale thing. If there is low morale, we all feel it.”

Lovatto: “I would tell myself that you are going to be real tired.”

 

Q: After this show, what is next for FOP?

Renfrow: “I think, after the show and the EP release, we are going to have a momentum thing we are going to keep doing. We're going to focus on keeping on, putting out new stuff.”

Lee: “Ben has been spending a lot of time making the songs full, and we get to go back to having some brews and jamming around. That’s one of my favorite parts besides recording.”

 

To listen to the EP 'Swine Flu' visit their Bandcamp page. 

Life Lessons "Attention To Detail"

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Local pop-punk band Life Lessons is composed of Andrew Wasson (bass), Alex Akins (guitar), Kaden Birdsong (vocals), Chris Lewis (drums) and Josh O'Dell (guitar/vocals). Noted by Alternative Press as "Pop-Punk Prodigies" they immediately remind listeners of why Four Year Strong, Green Day, Taking Back Sunday and many others will always reign supreme. 

Life Lessons new single "Attention To Detail" was released on August 6 as a preview to their new EP "Best in Motion" that will be released under Triple Crown Records in September. 

But, what is most impressive is how Akins opens with creative, gnarly and up to tempo hooks that match Birdsongs voice along with the entirety of the band. Noted the band might be young and from Oklahoma but, tackling punk rock has been an achievable goal for Life Lessons throughout the years. Another important aspect of Life Lessons is the synchronicity of drummer Lewis with the rest of the band especially through breakdowns of the song. 

This September Life Lessons will be touring with Four Year Strong with the "Rise or Die Trying Tour" for more information on tour dates visit their Facebook page or visit the OU Daily for a previous profile about Life Lessons. 

OKC Based Monikers Releasing New Album in September

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OKC Based Monikers Releasing New Album in September

August 7, 2017

Monikers band is composed of Ben Rowland 25 and plays keys and backing vocals and Clay Milford 25 and plays guitar and sings. Rowland and Milford met while attending Southern Nazarene University located in Bethany, Oklahoma in 2012. 

The two first met at training for First Bethany Bank and at the time Clay had long hair down to his shoulders he said. 

Monikers will release their new album Mon1kers on September 8 for more information on this exciting, outgoing and honest band that reflects in their music and sound read my Q&A with the band. 

 

How did you get started together?

 

Clay

"While training for the job at First Bethany Bank my hair was down to my shoulders and Ben looked at me and he was like 'oh you play an instrument don't you?' and I was like 'yeah I do it's probably the hair'. In 2014 I was recording some stuff on Ableton just messing around with that 'dancy' sound that I knew Ben was into. I texted him saying 'Hey Man, we always talked about doing music together. I got some stuff you might want to look at that you might think is cool. After that text, he sent me back the chord progression that is on the song now. I texted him saying we should get together this weekend and Ben said 'That sounds awesome' but, didn't text me back for two years. After two years, in 2014, he finally texted me back saying 'We still good for Saturday?' We got together and wrote a few of the songs that we play live today and started it up.

 

 

So, Ben why did you not text him back?

 

Clay "That's a great question"

Ben "I honestly don't know. I was just in college, applying for nursing school and was really busy. I am really bad at answering text messages."

 

You have an album coming out, tell me a little bit about that?

 

Clay- “As of now it’s going to have13 tracks on it. We put out an EP on July 29 of 2016. About a third of the album is going to be from that EP. The other 9 are brand new but, have been played live. We feel that it really runs the gamut We both love different types of music, Ben can actually read music and is skilled classically. I just took guitar lessons and noodled my way around it. We both love electronic stuff, rock, disco and this and that. We didn’t try to make a bunch of songs that don’t sound like each other, it just kind of happened.”

 

Ben- “We recorded it all in my house”

 

Did you have anyone help or did you self-produce the album?

 

Clay “All the writing and tracking is us. As far as mixing and mastering we have a couple of friends in the studio at SNU that are helping us. Zach Lucero and Ken Rosfeld are helping us out. It’s definitely not us handing our tracks out and having them do what they will, we are pretty picky”

 

Are there are local shows or tours coming out?

 

Clay- “We have a lot out in the city. We have about three shows in September and two shows in October. We have thought about branching out into Dallas. As far as an organized tour we don’t have anything planned at the moment.”

 

Is there something you could tell your younger selves as beginning musicians what would it be?

 

Ben “If I would have known that recording music was possible at a younger age I would have done that. I also would have started playing with bands in high school instead of playing classical piano by myself and then finally playing with Clay when I was 24. I got into recording when I was 20”

 

Clay “I would tell my young self to tell more people about liking music. When I first started playing I didn’t want to be the guy that whipped the acoustic guitar out at a cook out and everybody is like ‘Oh gosh freaking Devin is at it again with his acoustic guitar’. I never wanted to be that guy and so I never really liked telling people ‘Oh I love music’ because than they say ‘Oh play me something!’. I always kept music to myself, I don’t know why because I have played since I was 10 and that is kind of stupid. I wish I would have joined bands at a younger age. I didn’t start trying in a group until I was 19. I didn’t learn how to handle myself in a band and things I like and don’t like until I was older. Just be more proud of the ability that you do have. In music nobody wants to appear like they don’t know what they are doing when in fact most of the time they don’t know what they are doing. It is just like life.”

 

For more information on the local pysch-pop band, Monikers, visit their Facebook page or Instagram for the latest information. 

The Start of Volume 11

When I was in fifth grade no school subject seemed to intrigue me other than reading. At the age of four I taught myself how to read and was hooked on reading multiple books a day to pass time and pretend I was the protagonist within every story.

 

To this day I still enjoy the trace stench of opening an ancient library book. Reading influences not only the mind it also leaves a mark on those who dedicate free time to exploring his or her creative side. Even at the age of four I knew that I had a gift of storytelling and that pursuing a form of storytelling, as a career would be wise.

 

One day I had teacher who decided to change my life for the greater good and showed me how truly amazing writing can be if you dedicate your mind and soul to the hobby. I fell in love instantly. It was the first time in my life I characterized a school subject as fun and entertaining.

 

I am one of the lucky ones and at age 11 I knew that when I was starting my career I wanted to become a journalist and tell the entire universe what was going on in the unexplored corners of the Earth. I began to read news stories from USA Today, CNN and the New York Times even if I didn’t grasp the mature content that my eyes were soaking up; I still enjoyed how the word flowed together.

 

After a ballet class in Tulsa, OK I went to the nearest Borders with my mother and picked up my first issue of Rolling Stone magazine. After reading this issue I knew that I wanted to become a music journalist and working for Rolling Stone would become my ultimate goal. I still have the September 2009 issue under my bed in my hometown. Although the pages are crinkled and ripped that issue will forever hold a piece of my heart and spirit.

 

I currently am a student at the University of Oklahoma and will graduate with a B.A. degree in Journalism with an online focus and a minor in Sociology in May 2018. As a student at OU many organizations have opened countless doors for myself and other students. The OU Daily has provided me with a solid journalistic foundation that has not only helped my writing become consistent but, has shaped me as a human being.

 

This past year I spent many long enduring months of hardcore journalism classes. I am blessed to be a student of Gaylord College at the University of Oklahoma where all of my professors have won major awards, a few have even received a Pulitzer Prize for their beyond astounding work while in the field. Journalism isn’t easy; in a way reporters much like dancers make the process appear effortless. While being a full time student, I am also a full time reporter at the OU Daily as an Arts and Entertainment reporter.  

 

As a student I often get lost within my schoolwork and reporting at the Daily that I forget to write for myself. This year I have decided to dedicate my time to a new and improved music blog brought to the world by yours truly. I am excited to give myself this promise because; I get to practice projecting my voice and push creative boundaries.

 

This blog will be labeled as Volume 11. The magazine will be available to look at on the blog. In the fall of 2016 I created a 10-page magazine that focused on music with a main audience of young women (although men have enjoyed the layout of the magazine as well). I want this blog to be portrayed to the same audience.

 

Volume 11 will include podcasts, album reviews of local and national musicians, music venues and just other women or men being badass within the music community. Most of all Volume 11 focuses on bringing good vibes to all who read the content.

 

I welcome you to my quirky project, I hope you enjoy!