Sunday, June 2, 2013

The Return of the Music Video

The music video is back! Thanks no less to a little website called and a mass yearning for something a little more imaginative than...well most of what you see on cable TV.

I suppose it's the "new MTV" of sorts.  Things come and things go, but some things never change.

But don't take my word for it!

Here are a few REAL music videos to WATCH:









and this one's just for fun...


Happy watching!

Friday, March 22, 2013


San Diego, CA

By Rachael Alvine

Modern Heist released a new album in February 2013 called "All I Ever Loved".  The southern Cali band describes themselves as "heavy folk, classic rock, dirty blues, as well as...hard rock/punk, and sometimes even pop...alternative indie but our style exceeds that large box".

Personally, I love the band's self-given monniker "post-coffeehouse" which I feel is most appropriate after listening to the album's tracks.

This band already has a special place in my heart simply because they are from the very town I hope to end up in someday, San Diego.  Not to mention a brief description of the band sounds similar to what I hope to create musically one day.  Perhaps this is why aspiring musicians like to listen to other people's music.

The first album track "Sad Condition" is a short and sweet intro to the album asking forgiveness, for what, I'm not exactly sure. The soft vocals work and I get the essence of an acoustic "Cranberries" song at first listen.

"Be Honest" is a harder track with more of the blues influence mentioned.  This track is receiving some airplay (central valley Rock 96-7) and could be on its way to becoming a single, however, I think a re-record of a stronger vocal might get this track the mass-attention and radio play the band could be hoping for. 

"Creature Own Adventure" is a very up-beat and "catchy" track that once again evokes the 90's coffeehouse roots of indie folk/singer/ know what I'm talking about.  Watch a few episodes of FRIENDS.  I think most females would find a happy place in this song, at least during "special" times of the month. 

"So L.A." is a track that is very easy to listen to and could capture the attention of a large group of indie-rock listeners.  With the right production team, this band could really go places.  All of the elements are there, but at times I want more from the vocals and the rest of the band individually.  

"Dance Number" is a great song and I might guess the band's most popular song at live shows.  This song almost captures a Bowie sound....or maybe a tiny hint of British punk.  This track was definitely the most interesting to me at first listen of the album.

This next track has the best lyrics on the album. "The Natives Are on Dexaphenadrine" starts with the line "I like the taste of smoke and coke, and ketamine..." which is totally awesome and great reference to diet pills in the title.  I love the instrumentation used, everything just really came together with this song.  I attribute a lot of that to the thoughtful and uncurbed lyrics of the track. 

"Postcards from Perfect" is a song that is upbeat and more rock, including a hard rock bridge that I really enjoyed.  Overall the album relates the attributes of some of the great 90's indie girl rock like Veruca Salt, Lisa Loeb or even Natalie Merchant.

"Tithing" is a nice closing offering to the album.  A harder track that drives home the real message of the project which is very timely and new saying to our own individual oppressors,

 "You may think that I am selfish and deranged, crazy not to wanna play these petty little games."

The album is solid and well-balanced and I like hearing the old and new influences of indie rock on most all of the tracks. This is a band that has elements of staying power.  And that's rare these days.

But don't take my word for it!


Saturday, January 26, 2013


Story/Photos: Rachael Alvine

Spent an hour last night standing in the freezing cold on University Avenue for a NEON TREES concert to start. The show had “sold out” in under ten minutes, with over 8,000 people crashing the server trying to get tickets to the two Friday night shows in Provo.
NEON TREES was set to play Wednesday, Jan 23rd at  Park City Live but due to confusion linked to disagreements over ticket price, the band conceded to cancel the show.  Not wanting to disappoint their loyal Utah fans, the band contacted Velour Live Music Gallery in Provo who immediately offered to host the band for three special shows that the band wanted to be more “intimate” for their original fan-base.

Velour is a beautiful  venue and perfect for this special concert. You should check it out if you’re ever in Utah County (cough cough).  The capacity crowd waited in darkness for NEON TREES to take the stage while spacing out to some Vangelis.  The energy was just amazing and I had a front row sweet spot.
 The lights go crazy, there’s fog… the band takes the stage and starts playing  “Moving in the Dark” with Tyler Glenn in some fierce silver lame pants topped with an Elvis-like jacket.  It was unbelievable.  Everyone was clapping, singing.  This is my new favorite song…for the moment.

The band played several songs from their recent release PICTURE SHOW including “Mad Love” and one of my other personal favorites, “Lessons in Love”, at which point Tyler started taking some of his clothes off (wink wink).  Believe me it was an amazing performance of a radass song. (Yeah that’s a word.) Tyler definitely knows how to dance. And I definitely got schooled.
The crowd went insane over “1983” which is a song written about the year he was born, the vocalist explained.  More from their album HABITS included “Love and Affection” and their break-out hit “Animal” which I have amazing, rare video footage of…and someday I will upload for your enjoyments.

The Provo City Mayor showed up and presented an official award to NEON TREES for representing the city and community in such an amazing way to a national audience.   The band’s drummer and backup vocalist, Elaine Bradley, jokingly admitted that for a minute she thought they were getting a key to the city….at which point, Tyler called her out for being “greedy”.  Everyone loved how honest and down-to-earth the band was the whole night.  It was super cool. 

Tyler apologized for the band to all of the fans who had to miss their show due to the ticket mix-up, but said he was truly honored to be playing on Velour’s stage again. The band is definitely grateful for their Provo roots.  He then played an amazing song, just voice and piano, which I had never heard before but might be called “Surrender”….it was beautiful.  And I have video footage of that too.
Now for the good part. Tyler came over to my corner of the stage, looked deep into my eyes, grabbed my hand and then started singing “Don’t You Want Me” and I was singing and screaming “YES!”…along with everyone else. So much fun. Oh my God.
Tyler also explained to his fans that despite silly rumors, he is in fact not homosexual.  He’s sad that people judge him for his absolutely fabulous glam-rock fashion sense and would like everyone to know that “there’s nothing inherently  gay about fabric”…just sayin.
NEON TREES closed their set with their chart-topping “Everybody Talks” and it was everything I had ever hoped it could be...and more.  Everyone left happy. And yes, I did geek out and get a band tee.
I can’t wait to see what these guys do next…



Monday, November 19, 2012

Candy Cigarettes

Portland, OR
By Rachael Alvine

Candy Cigarettes is the evolved project of Lane Mueller, self-proclaimed music veteran from northern Oregon.  The music definitely falls into the indie rock genre with shoegazer overtones and a mellow yellow feel.  The track "Take 4 Granted" has a folksie musicality with hints of British indie rock and tongue-in-cheek vocals that ring of the Moldy Peaches. More of a female vocal would add some depth and warmth to the track.

"Tomorrow" also brings the Brit-Rock essence but with more complex tempo changes and an interesting soundscape.  The guitar is especially nice and completes the song.  "Weary Is" boasts the most ethereal and mellow, however, while the piano adds depth to the track, it seems to have a bravado that somewhat takes away from the original mood of the song. 

Overall, Candy Cigarettes is a pleasant music project and one that I would enjoy hearing live in a laid-back, low lit music venue that would set the mood for a sexy date or calming come-down.  These tracks would be perfect for a feature in the neo-hippie show, Portlandia, for sure.  


Saturday, March 24, 2012


Salt Lake City.  January 24, 2012. 

King Niko, who's most recent single "Intentions" has been in rotation across the country, today released their latest single digitally.  "Guns Up" has already been getting radio play in King Niko's hometown of Salt Lake City and today is available for download on iTunes, Rhapsody, Amazon and  The song can also be streamed for free on popular sites like Spotify, Grooveshark and Soundcloud.  

King Niko frontman Ransom Wydner describes "Guns Up" as "a song about urgency and the impetus to live right this second--not in some cheesy way, but in a very real and very gritty way.  It's a song about living as much as it's a song about dying."  The song's catchy chorus, shout-along hooks and compelling verses are bolstered by driving bass and drums, pulsating keys and guitar riffs that cut to the bone.  

Guns Up was recorded at MetCom Studios in downtown Salt Lake City by Producer/Engineer Mateo Coletti who also recorded King Niko's last single "Intentions."

King Niko is a rock-n-roll band from Salt Lake City, which came together in 2009 for the purpose of "making chicks dance."   King Niko has played with many nationally-renowned groups including Say Anything, Rooney, 30 Seconds to Mars, Neon Trees, Anberlin and Panic! At The Disco.  Their music is available on iTunes, Amazon, Rhapsody and many other music retailers.  More information can be found at

Attached Link: Guns Up, by King Niko via