Gary Allan ‘Living Hard’ album review – highly recommended

Gary Allan - Living Hard

I’ve been listening to country singer Gary Allan’s latest album, ‘Living Hard’ the last couple of days. He has a cool voice and the songwriting and musicianship on the album is superb …

Gary Allan - Living Hard

I’ve been listening to country singer Gary Allan’s latest album, ‘Living Hard’ the last couple of days. He has a cool voice and the songwriting and musicianship on the album is superb.

The ‘Living Hard’ CD is actually my first introduction to Gary Allan and his music. For some reason, I had never known too much about him before. You would think that I would have, considering that he’s been on the country music scene since 1996, when he released his first studio album, ‘Used Heart For Sale’ through Decca Records. Since then he’s released seven studio albums – with three of them going platinum as well as #1 hit singles under his belt.

There’s obviously quite a few Gary Allan fans out there, but with all that he’s done with his career, I wonder why he wasn’t high on my country music radar like other male singers in his genre? Does he not get as much attention in the media because he’s considered an outsider, as he’s originally from California? Also, his music has more of a rock edge to it than your ‘typical’ country sound – but that’s not really a new thing in modern country music.

That rock edge to Gary Allan’s music does appeal to me and he’s a bit of a chameleon – and seems to have an open mind, musically. Like the way he’s singing on “We Touched The Sun”. Makes me think that Elvis could have done that song justice as well. Then there’s “She’s So California”, with a Tom Petty vibe.

“Watching Airplanes” was the obvious right pick for the opening track and first single release off of ‘Living Hard’. It’s a great song and is most certainly worthy of a Country Music Award.

“Like It’s a Bad Thing” is ‘in the pocket’ with a rocking groove. “Learning How To Bend” could easily be a contender for a Country Music Charts hit. “Wrecking Ball” is a fun song with heavy guitar riffs, high quality musicianship, with lyrics about a guy who can’t get enough: “she blows into town, loves me up and down just to watch me fall. She picks me up and then knocks me down again I’m a wreck y’all, she’s a wreckin’ ball”.

“Yesterday’s Rain” is an outstanding ballad, and closing track “Living Hard” captures the energy of a live band playing to a packed to the rafters bar, but with the polished Nashville sound that you would expect from Gary Allan.

‘Living Hard’ – highly recommended.

Track listing with songwriting credits:

1. Watching Airplanes (Jim Beavers, Jonathan Singleton)
2. We Touched the Sun (Gary Allan, Odie Blackmon, Jim Lauderdale)
3. She’s So California (Gary Allan, Jon Randall, Jaime Hanna)
4. Like It’s a Bad Thing (Neil Thrasher, Tony Martin, Wendell Mobley)
5. Learning How to Bend (Gary Allan, Matt Warren, James LeBlanc)
6. As Long As You’re Looking Back (Scotty Emerick, Dean Dillon, Aaron Barker)
7. Wrecking Ball (Keith Gattis, Audley Freed)
8. Yesterday’s Rain (Gary Allan, Matt Warren, James LeBlanc)
9. Trying to Matter (Gary Allan, Odie Blackmon, Casey Beathard)
10. Half of My Mistakes (Radney Foster, Bobby Houck)
11. Living Hard (Gary Allan, Odie Blackmon, Bob DiPiero)

Living Hard on

For music, the latest news and tour dates go to:

Gary Allan on Myspace
Gary Allan Official Website

By: Jenny May –

Rock Band game, song list + watch video demo review

Rock Band

The Rock Band video game has been released and for some gamers, Christmas has come early. Developed by Boston based video game company Harmonix (Go Red Sox), and acquired by MTV in 2006, Rock Band is all the rage. Some people are saying it’s the best music video game they’ve ever played and god forbid, that it’s even better than Guitar Hero …

Rock BandThe Rock Band video game has been released and for some gamers, Christmas has come early. Developed by Boston based video game company Harmonix (Go Red Sox), and acquired by MTV in 2006, Rock Band is all the rage. Some people are saying it’s the best music video game they’ve ever played and god forbid, that it’s even better than Guitar Hero. It’s also being reported that sales of music genre games like Rock Band could help save the “flagging” music industry.

Strictly from an observers point of view, I must admit I am curious. It’s hard not to be from all of this excitement. To be able play a video game where up to four players can play instrument-based peripherals – guitar, bass, drums, and a microphone for the singer seems like fun. However, as a singer and musician, I would be interested to know if musicians really can have fun playing Rock Band without getting bored quickly. After all, what’s better than experiencing the real thing? Then again, after a few drinks…

Hats off to the developers, though. Rock Band does seem like it could be a great party game and it is quite the innovative idea.

I’ve been growing more fascinated with the use of music in video games. They’re a great platform for music and will continue to create more opportunities for bands and artists in the years to come.

Now that MTV is involved, it will be interesting to see where we go from here. Rock Band is opening up the playing field and breaking independent bands alongside major artists within the game. I think that’s a great idea and I’m all for it (even with the inclusion of some of the Harmonix staff who are in bands like Freezepop and Bang Camaro!).

The song list is impressive. Just looking through the set list, there are some standout tracks that would be fun to sing and play along to like “Ballroom Blitz”, “Creep”, “Dani California”, “Don’t Fear the Reaper”, “Foreplay/Longtime”, “Tom Sawyer” and a few others.

It was announced at one point that Steven Van Zandt, a.k.a. Little Steven (Bruce Springsteen And The E Street Band) was going to “head up the board as the chairman with a select group of celebrity musicians and industry experts to select songs.” I’m not sure who was responsible for the band Boston being included, but it’s funny to see, considering Rock Band was created by a Boston based company.

I can imagine there will be many people out there wondering why certain bands and artists aren’t included yet. Like, where’s Jimi Hendrix? I know that Experience Hendrix (Janie who handles his estate) can be strict with his music but if anything, this would be a great platform for his music. Better than having his image printed on golf balls, but I digress.

The song list is also lacking in female singers. Heart (“Barracuda” would be a rockin’ number to sing) and Pat Benatar would be fun additions, but maybe they’ll add more in time. Little Steven certainly has his hands full, and I’m sure will be getting requests for bands on a daily basis.

When or if I do end up playing Rock Band, I’ll be sure to include a full review of my experience with the game here on Band Weblogs.

Watch the Rock Band video demo review by IGN:

Rock Band Song List:
(In alphabetical order)

Are You Gonna Be My Girl – Jet
Ballroom Blitz – Sweet
Black Hole Sun – Soundgarden
Blitzkrieg Bop – Ramones
Celebrity Skin – Hole
Cherub Rock – Smashing Pumpkins
Creep – Radiohead
Dani California – Red Hot Chili Peppers
Dead on Arrival – Fall Out Boy
Detroit Rock City – Kiss
(Don’t Fear) The Reaper – Blue Oyster Cult
The Electric Version – The New Pornographers
Enter Sandman – Metallica
Epic – Faith No More
Flirtin’ with Disaster – Molly Hatchet
Foreplay/Long Time – Boston
Gimme Shelter – The Rolling Stones
Go with the Flow – Queens of the Stone Age
Green Grass and High Tides – The Outlaws
The Hand That Feeds – Nine Inch Nails
Here It Goes Again – OK Go
Highway Star – Deep Purple
I Think I’m Paranoid – Garbage
In Bloom – Nirvana
Learn to Fly – Foo Fighters
Main Offender – The Hives
Maps – Yeah Yeah Yeahs
Mississippi Queen – Mountain
Next to You – The Police
Orange Crush – R.E.M.
Paranoid – Black Sabbath
Reptilia – The Strokes
Run to the Hills – Iron Maiden
Sabotage – Beastie Boys
Say It Ain’t So – Weezer
Should I Stay or Should I Go – The Clash
Suffragette City – David Bowie
Tom Sawyer – Rush
Train Kept A-Rollin’ – Aerosmith
Vasoline – Stone Temple Pilots
Wanted Dead or Alive – Bon Jovi
Wave of Mutilation – Pixies
Welcome Home – Coheed and Cambria
When You Were Young – The Killers
Won’t Get Fooled Again – The Who

13 bonus tracks by established bands and independent artists that can be unlocked as you play the game:

Song List:

29 Fingers – The Konks
Blood Doll – Anarchy Club
Brainpower – Freezepop
Can’t Let Go – Death of the Cool
Day Late, Dollar Short – The Acro-Brats
I Get By – Honest Bob and the Factory-to-Dealer Incentives
I’m So Sick – Flyleaf
Nightmare – Crooked X
Outside – Tribe
Pleasure (Pleasure) – Bang Camaro
Seven – Vagiant
Time We Had – The Mother Hips
Timmy and the Lords of the Underworld – Timmy and the Lords of the Underworld

Downloadable song packs will also be available.

Rock Band is currently available for Microsoft’s Xbox 360 and Sony’s PlayStation 3 consoles. PS2 in December 2007.

Rock Band on

Rock Band IGN video review link

For more information, go to:

Rock Band Official Website

By: Jenny May – Band Weblogs

Enter Shikari ‘Take To The Skies’ album release, tour dates + watch videos

Enter Shikari

Despite mounting pressure to make their lives easy with all of the desirable lunches and dinners A&R expense accounts bought Enter Shikari, in November 2006 this band from St. Albans, England took it upon themselves to make the (possibly reckless) decision NOT to sign to a major label …

Enter Shikari

Despite mounting pressure to make their lives easy with all of the desirable lunches and dinners A&R expense accounts bought Enter Shikari, in November 2006 this band from St. Albans, England took it upon themselves to make the (possibly reckless) decision NOT to sign to a major label. Instead, they took a loan from their distributor, Vital/Integral, and announced they would be releasing their debut album on their own Ambush Reality label.

Enter Shikari’s debut album ‘Take To The Skies’ was released in the UK, Europe and Japan in March 2007 and quickly slammed into the Number 3 spot on the UK album charts – not to mention two singles hitting the number one spot.

Take To The Skies album

Then, in true punk form, Enter Shikari rejected US label options and partnered with label imprint Tiny Evil Records (Jimmy Eat World, Brand New, AFI) for the October 30th, 2007 stateside release of ‘Take To The Skies.’ The main benefits of this route are that Enter Shikari has never had to listen to anyone else’s advice but their own. They have taken themselves from ‘one man and his dog’ to capacity crowds. All without ever having to wait for a ‘tastemaker’ deem them this afternoon’s ‘next big thing’. Not bad for a bunch of St. Albans lads.

Edges that were once rough (and would surely have been smoothed over and dulled by advice from those with an interest in shifting product) have instead been sharpened by the road, turning Enter Shikari into one of the most exciting, brutal and explosive live bands on Britain’s screamo / post-hardcore / whatthefu**ever ‘scene’ to this date.

After playing a packed to rafter tent at 2006’s Download Festival and then opening up for My Chemical Romance, the loyal “Army of Shikari” was steadily growing at a rapid pace. Validating all their hard work, perseverance and a no compromise attitude, the lads went on to sell out the London Astoria, being the second band ever in the world to achieve such a feat without a record deal or album out.

Enter Shikari

How do they feel about being asked to play [the Give it a Name Tour]?

“We’re very excited about playing. And it’s some massive venues, with like seventeen thousand people. It’s a crazy line-up. I mean, we’re above Senses Fail, which is just incredible because we love them…I’m looking forward to seeing bands like Thursday and Brand New…AFI…HIM” – Big Cheese

When the late and greatly missed Tony Wilson walked into the Manchester Lesser Free Trade Show town hall one evening back in June 1976, he stumbled across a little known band called Sex Pistols, playing to a half empty room consisting of a bunch unenthused northern union workers and overeager junior industry folk. At that very moment Wilson knew he’d just discovered a band so utterly groundbreaking, exciting and ultimately inspiring upon that stage. A band that had credible music critics baffled and scratching their heads, ranting what a joke they were. Yet soon became genre defining icons, symbolic of a subculture that still resonates in various forms to this very day.

Last summer Tony Wilson himself, was ranting away to many about another band he’d also found in the UK in the summer of 2006. In came Enter Shikari…

Two parts post-hardcore, the other half synth-rock trance. With obvious nods to the 90’s UK rave scene along with another to punk and hardcore, they’ve managed to rally up even the most stoic of fans to mosh like madmen and wave their hands in the air like the most dedicated of ravers!

Enter Shikari has been called everything from punk to trancecore, trance emo to flat out screamo. UK Press labeling aside, what we have here is another groundbreaking and genre defying band. They’re the only band who walked away with 2 prestigious Kerrang Magazine Music Awards this year for Best British Band, and The Spirit of Independence Awards.

In true Keith Moon fashion, Rolfe is quite possibly the wildest member in the band, he is blatantly unable to physically stay behind his drum kit through out the set, continually moving stage front during (the) synthesized parts of songs – he’s a key element into what gets the crowd excited and what makes this band so utterly unique in their performances.

“Rou Reynolds’s snarled verses give way to choruses that are literally choral-unison vocals whose sustained notes and purity of tone uplift the spirit like sunlight pouring through stained glass”. – Blender

“We want to do things differently”, says Reynolds, “we always have. We want to do things ourselves and we want to take responsibility for the things we do. We want to make something that’s personal, because otherwise how can people be expected to relate to it? How can they be expected to like us?”

Watch video – Enter Shikari “Mothership” Live at Reading Festival:

Finally bowing to pressure from the fans they’ve collected online, this past spring they embarked on their first ever US tour. This was without any label behind them, they managed to wow the crowds in North America all on their own, with a short run of dates in Anaheim, Pomona, San Francisco, Seattle, Portland, Vancouver, Toronto, Worcester and New Jersey to start.

When they recently played in NYC at an all ages Bowery Show, over 300 kids who moshed and raved, then broke out the windmills, oozing the angst so familiar to audiences who went to see the Pistols back in the late 70’s. The enthusiasm of the Bowery crowd is a testament to Enter Shikari’s loyal fan base and, importantly, their ability to put on a kick-ass live show. The live performance this band delivers is supreme – complete with glow sticks and a heart-felt rapport with the audience.

In December 2007 they embark on a West Coast tour from Portland to San Diego to celebrate the long-anticipated release of ‘Take To The Skies’. But if this tour is anything like their previous New York show, fans will be screaming every lyric back at the band, despite an official album release duration of only one month.

Enter Shikari formed while still in school in 2003. As soon as the summer came around, they climbed in the van and hit the road. They’ve pretty much never come home since. It seems nothing will stop them and they have no plans of doing such a thing. Catch the intensity and infamous notoriety that is, Enter Shikari.

Enter Shikari

Read what some people are saying about Enter Shikari:

“Genuine musical phenomena”The Guardian (UK)

“Enter Shikari bring a fresh twist to the frequently botched dream of rocktronica. Where the Prodigy merged rave dynamics with cartoon punk tantrums, Shikari mesh hacking guitar riffs with serenely celestial synth-ripples…As fervent about dance culture’s hands-in-the-air rituals as punk and metai’s moshing and stage-diving…Shikari are all about the release of constructive aggression.”Blender

“An immeasurably thrilling proposition, tonight Enter Shikari ruled – in front of their own crowd they’re going to slay”NME

“Enter Shikari…have become the figureheads of a new anything-goes generation…Their marriage of both types of hardcore (techno and punk) and a flirtation with the trappings of rave culture have resulted in a unique combination that fuses the hard-hitting wide-eyed delivery of the Prodigy with the proto-screamo dynamics of Refused…”Alternative Press

“One of the most inventive UK bands in years”Uncut Magazine

“It’s as if the Prodigy got eaten by Muse’s crazy younger brother”Observer Music Monthly

Winter 2007 North American Tour Dates:

Dates could change! Go to Enter Shikari’s Official Website for the latest tour dates and information.

November 30th – Portland, Oregon – Satyricon
December 1 – Vancouver, Canada – Plaza Club
December 2 – Seattle, Washington – Chop Suey
December 4 – San Francisco, California – Bottom Of The Hill
December 5 – Los Angeles – Troubadour
December 6 – Anaheim – Chain Reaction
December 7 – San Diego – Soma

Watch Enter Shikari “Sorry You’re Not A Winner” video

“Britain’s hottest band”Sunday Times Culture

“Sounds like Pantera getting off their nut at Manumission…Euphoric House forcibly buggered by teenage screamo tykes”NME

Band Members:

Rou Reynolds – Vocals/Electronics
Chris Batten – Bass/Vocals
Rory Clewlow – Guitar/backing Vocals
Rob Rolfe – Drums

More videos on YouTube – Ambush Reality
Enter Shikari on Myspace
Enter Shikari Official Website

Souljacker live at the Temple Bar Oxford review


One of the best things about discovering bands and listening to new music online is when you can turn what initially begins as a virtual experience into a live music experience. The first time that I heard Souljacker was on their Myspace page after I was tipped off by a friend to check them out …


One of the best things about discovering bands and listening to new music online is when you can turn what initially begins as a virtual experience into a live music experience. The first time that I heard Souljacker was on their Myspace page after I was tipped off by a friend to check them out. I really liked their sound and had to wait about three weeks to see them play live at the Temple Bar in Oxford, England – and last Saturday the wait was finally over.

The Temple Bar has been around for quite a few years now, and in the “old days” was a place where a lot of musicians would gather and hang out. Over the years, there hasn’t been much going on there and I never really heard anyone talking about the Temple Bar – good or bad.

Things are different now. New owner Barry has opened the doors to musicians and has set up an open mic night on Wednesdays and live music on Saturday nights. There’s a great atmosphere, the bar staff are friendly and you can’t beat Barry’s enthusiasm toward live music and helping bands and musicians hone their craft, while entertaining the punters.

It was good to see the room begin to fill up as Souljacker started their set. They play guitar rock – originals that sound like old classics (“Jimmy Drank My Tea”), along with classic covers by bands like Free, Motorhead and Jimi Hendrix Experience. They even played a funky cover of “Ghostbusters”, which caught me by surprise. The crowd loved it.

Souljacker played two sets – and for each set, the crowd was engrossed. The band is full of confidence which, considering how young they are, is refreshing to see. Singer/guitarist Patrick Burley (and his soulful vocals) is entertaining and interacts with the crowd like an old pro. Same goes for guitarist Hamish Denny. The guitar solos are stand-out and drummer Josh Catling is incredible. As a unit they’re tight and sound like they’ve been playing for years.

I think that it’s easy to forget that while the area (Oxford) tends to be over-saturated with indie bands, that there are other styles out there. Saturday night proved to me that the public is hungry for something else.

If steered in the right direction, Souljacker could reach many more people who have missed hearing new rock bands on the scene. They are definitely a band to watch out for, and if they’re playing in a town near you, I highly recommend going to check them out.

Souljacker Band Members:

Patrick Burley – Guitar/Vocals
Hamish Denny – Guitar
Rowan Mayo – Bass
Josh Catling – Drums
Robbie Moore – Keyboards

For more information and live show dates go to:

Souljacker on Myspace

Photo Credit: Dave Tommo

By: Jenny May – Band Weblogs

A Thousand Suns ‘Destroy Create’ review

A Thousand Suns

A Thousand Suns is an up and coming band from South Wales, set to release their debut EP, ‘Destroy Create’. The three founding members Dan Greenall, Tom Latham and Joe Latham formed the band in 2006 (with the later addition of Super G on bass), and in the past year have played all over South Wales … Read the review!

A Thousand Suns

A Thousand Suns is an up and coming band from South Wales, set to release their debut EP, ‘Destroy Create’. The three founding members Dan Greenall, Tom Latham and Joe Latham formed the band in 2006 (with the later addition of Super G on bass), and in the past year have played all over South Wales, sharing stages with bands such as Kill The Arcade, 12 Gauge Alliance, Working Class Heroes, Klay and Resonate.

‘Destroy Create’ was produced by Romesh Dodangoda (Kids In Glass Houses, Dopamine and The Blackout) and is set for release in December 2007, with a launch party at the Cardiff Barfly planned for December 5th.

A Thousand Suns

I’m not surprised that A Thousand Suns has been getting airplay on BBC Radio One and BBC Radio Wales. I can hear hints of Muse and Metallica in their music, which is interesting, and the more I listen to their new EP, ‘Destroy Create’, the more it grows on me.

They’ve produced some excellent chord progressions and changes within songs. The drummer sounds great, and is an obvious influence to their sound as well. There’s no denying the high quality of musicianship within A Thousand Suns. If you like your rock heavy, and rock music that caters to long attention spans, then they are definitely a band worth checking out.

A Thousand Suns Official Website
A Thousand Suns on Myspace

By: Jenny May – Band Weblogs

Billy Morrison interview

Billy Morrison - Show

Billy Morrison has, in some ways, been a part of my inspiration for the spirit behind The idea of reading blogs written by musicians who are so open about their musical and sometimes personal lives is intriguing. To then combine rock music…Read the exclusive interview! […]

Billy Morrison - Show

Billy Morrison has, in some ways, been a part of my inspiration for the spirit behind The idea of reading blogs written by musicians who are so open about their musical and sometimes personal lives is intriguing. To then combine rock music and all the goings on – which is easily accessible via Billy Morrison’s blog along with his video blogs, band updates, swimming with sharks adventures, photos and more, for me is the perfect recipe for getting to know the musician behind the music – without the sometimes biased “middle man”.

Circus Diablo and Camp Freddy are Billy’s current bands – each with a line-up of musicians who most rock fans would be familiar with. Circus Diablo recently released their video for “Loaded” – which at one point landed at #1 music video on YouTube. Their next gig is opening up at the Velvet Revolver and Alice In Chains show on October 26th, 2007 at the Verizon Amphitheater in Irvine, CA.

Billy Morrison has been busy – he’s toured with The Cult, has been acting in movies, playing in bands, songwriting, DJing and of course keeping an active blog and podcast.

He’s now in the hot seat, for an interview with
By: Jenny May

Jenny May: The Circus Diablo “Loaded” video made number one music video on YouTube, which is great to see with a rock band. When will you be filming your next video? Will there be another uncensored version like with “Loaded”?

Billy Morrison: Actually there are some plans right now to finish a solo song that has been around for a while now and do a video for it in conjunction with the movie I just finished, called Basement Jack. And yes, it would be a similar ‘Adult’ and ‘PG’ version scenario. The movie was so much fun, and the director asked if I would do a video for a song that was going to be in the movie. So it just kinda came on to my radar like that. Should be shooting that one soon. Fans of my work in my last band, Doheny, will recognize the song!!

What was it like being on the road for Ozzfest with Circus Diablo? How did it go?

Ozzfest was fantastic fun. The whole ‘free’ thing brought a new element to an already established festival and it was, as always, a family affair. BBQ’s in the parking lot when all the fans had left. Bands getting drunk and partying together. Charles, our drummer, knew EVERYONE on the second stage within a day!! He’s the social animal and we would be hosting poker games outside our bus whenever we didn’t have to leave the venue straight away!! The gigs were great and Diablo was welcomed with open arms everywhere. A great experience. Thanks Sharon and Ozzy for having us be a part of it!!

Was LA the first place that you moved to in the States from England? How did you adjust to your new surroundings?

Yes. Los Angeles has always felt like home to me anyway, and by the time I really moved here for good, I had been coming here for so long that I knew the city like the back of my hand anyway. Since then, of course, I have pretty much been all over the States – I have visited nearly every state now. Alaska may be the only state I haven’t seen yet.

Billy Morrison

What have been some of your favorite gigs to attend – either in the US or England?

Attending shows is a good pastime if you love the band. If they suck, I can’t stand being at a show!! I’ll leave after three songs even if I dig the band! So its gotta be pretty good for me to stay the whole set. I don’t mean that in an arrogant way, but between attending shows, and playing shows as part of my job, I must have seen thousands of gigs!! So the really special ones are the ones that stand out. Nine Inch Nails in Las Vegas AND Nine Inch Nails at Universal Amphitheater with Janes Addiction opening. The Sex Pistols at Finsbury Park. The Wildhearts in London. Oasis at Wembley Stadium ……my list is long and varied!

My first and one of my best live music experiences was at a Guns N’ Roses concert. Occasionally, Slash will sit in with Camp Freddy. What is the best thing about playing music with Slash?

Slash is a modern day icon of the guitar. Anyone who gets to watch him up close is experiencing a true guitar hero at work. Getting to stand next to him on stage and play with him is kinda like the ultimate guitar jam – its f**ing amazing! I have been lucky enough to jam covers with him, AND participate in a bunch of Guns And Roses songs with him as well. You kinda stress when thats going down cos you REALLY don’t wanna f**k that up when he’s right next to you!! But thinking about it, Slash is SO loud onstage that he wouldn’t hear the mistakes anyway!!

Camp Freddy has had numerous guest musicians sit in with them. Who would you really want to play live music with, as a guest with Camp Freddy that hasn’t yet?

As always (and I get asked this a lot!!), my choices would be Iggy Pop, David Bowie and Madonna.

It’s interesting that both you and your fellow Camp Freddy band-mate Dave Navarro (Director: Broken) are involved in movie projects. Your most recent film, a horror, is Evilution. What was it like on the set?

My most recent film was actually Basement Jack!! But with that said, being on set is like being backstage at a show. LOTS of waiting around, getting ready, doing make up, shooting the shit with all the crew etc. And then suddenly someone shouts “ACTION!!” and you turn yourself into someone else for a short time. Then you’re done and you go back to goofing around and drinking tons of coffee!! The set of Basement Jack was just such a cool place – real family atmosphere and all the actors and the crew were so nice and friendly. I was made to feel right at home from day one.

How many movies have you acted in and what were they? What were the genres?

I have done three feature length movies so far, Tripping Forward (a black comedy), Evilution (horror) and Basement Jack (a slasher/thriller).

Which genre do you prefer to act in?

I am still so new at all this, so I haven’t begun to experience all the genres ……. although I REALLY fancy doing a big blockbuster action film, with lots of stuff blowing up and running around like a kid shooting at shit!

Do you want to continue acting? Direct at some point?

I already have another movie lined up for January, and yes I would LOVE to direct at some point. I just know I have TONS more to learn first, so I just want to continue acting for now, and watching quietly at how movies are actually put together from that side of the camera. Eventually I’ll switch sides and see what kind of a mess I make at actually visualizing one myself!

What are your favorite horror films?

I am a big fan of the new breed of horror movie. The Rob Zombie films (House Of 1000 Corpses, Devils Rejects) – the SAW movies, Hostel…that kind of sick, twisted horror. Also the OG stuff like The Exorcist and The Texas Chainsaw will always excite. The Grudge was also a great movie.

What platforms has your music appeared on (like movies, video games etc.)? Any projects planned at the moment?

I am lucky enough to have had songs on many different platforms. Movies, TV, Radio……not sure about video games. But I do have plans to release a song and video that will tie in with the last movie I just made. The song is called Evergreen and the director of the movie will be directing the video.

How did you get into blogging?

I found it through being a general, all purpose fan of the internet. Dave Navarro has been a great inspiration to me as well. He has been at the cutting edge of web based entertainment for a long while, and is a driving force for me and many others. I find my blog to be an honest and open expression of whatever I want to talk about. No misquoting, no opinion except my own, no misrepresentation. Its a true personal vision and thats the purest form of creativity.

Have you found that having a blog has been helpful for your music career and your fans?

I can see the potential for the Blog to cross over as a marketing and promotional tool. I couldn’t be 100% sure if mine has made a difference as I don’t really look at it in that way. I honestly try to be open and honest about my life, my endeavors and my fears, my successes and my failures, so that others can feel connected if they choose. The reason I write music is to try and connect with other people. The blog is just an extension of that desire to connect.

Do you prefer to blog or podcast?

I actually like both but the power of the written word is very strong. Good descriptive text can often convey WAY more than audio or video. Having said that, my site is full of it all, so I would say its all about balance!

You’re a guitar player (Camp Freddy), bass player (toured with The Cult) and now the frontman/singer in Circus Diablo. Which do you like doing the most and why?

I enjoy every single day that I get to do ANY of the above instead of working in a store or selling tee shirts at Camden Market in London (BOTH of which I have done!). I am blessed to be able to get by and pay the bills by being creative, so quite frankly they all appeal to me! But fronting Circus Diablo has been a very cathartic and enjoyable position. I think that singing, writing lyrics and connecting in that ‘frontman’ capacity has been the most fulfilling.

Do you have any memories that you would like to share from your days when you toured with The Cult?

Touring with The Cult was a great time for me – and playing all those songs that are, quite simply, rock classics was a fantastic experience. I always say that doing the main stage at Reading Festival was a memory that will stay with me, and also the homecoming show at Brixton Academy was a huge one for me too. Shopping in Tokyo with Astbury was an amusing couple of days as well.

Billy Morrison Tattoos

Any more tattoos planned? If so, what do you have in mind?

I don’t really plan the tattoos – they just seem to happen. I am sure that more ink is in my future although what and where, I have no idea!! My legs could do with some color so maybe I’ll start expanding around the japanese piece I have on my right leg. Or maybe I just start recoloring all my sleeves!! No idea, but I know that I’ll be sitting in that chair and hearing the familiar buzz soon.

You have an active blog, podcast, video blog, you DJ, write music, perform music, act. What next?!

Well, I cant say too much, but the term ‘writer/producer’ springs to mind. TV and Film are holding a special appeal with me at the moment so energy is being directed there. More Diablo shows as well (at the time of writing this, we are looking forward to opening for Velvet Revolver and Alice In Chains) and a solo song release with huge video attached to the movie I just finished, Basement Jack. And the Camp Freddy record is getting some much needed energy injected into it right now with plans to actually try to finish it!! More parties, more hosting, more more more (as Billy Idol once said!!).

For more information go to:

Billy Morrison’s Blog
Circus Diablo Official Website
Camp Freddy Official Website

Transfer interview


San Diego, California based band Transfer has, lucky for us, caught our attention here at Band Weblogs. The boys have managed to write and record one of THE BEST songs that I’ve heard this year. Read the interview! […]


San Diego, California based rock band Transfer has, lucky for us, caught our attention here at Band Weblogs. The boys have managed to write and record one of THE BEST songs that I’ve heard this year. That song is called “You Are The Wolf”. Of course their other tracks are spectacularly superb, like “Bring A Knife” and their new single, “Sinking, Sailing”. The vocals, musicianship and songwriting that Transfer brings to the table along with mouthwatering chords and changes within songs, is tight, polished and top notch. – Jenny May

Transfer was gracious enough to take the time out between recording and preparing for a UK tour for an interview with

Compiled by: Dave Tommo

Dave Tommo: I hear you’re recording at present. How’s it going and what distractions are there in L.A.?

Transfer (Jason Cardenas): Ahhh.. the bright lights, the scantily clad celebrities, the seemingly endless supply of party drugs. We actually keep our noses to the grindstone in the studio. So far, the recording process has been pretty spectacular for us… we have the chance to work with a solid producer at a good studio, so we’re definitely taking full advantage. Lucky for us, we have a lot of friends in LA so after the work day we can always knock off and party at a buddy’s house (saves money that way).

How did Transfer come to be?

We all met through our mutual friend, Merlin Olsen. Apparently we had in common a love of leather bound books, the smell of rich mahogany, and making sweet music. Three years later, here we are.

What influenced your latest album/EP (Faded Signal/Sunken Eyes)?

I think the new Sunken Eyes EP has a much more aggressive sound than Faded Signal. I think the influence comes mainly from within on this one. Spending a lot of time together as a band, being cooped up in a van driving up and down the coast, eating rats on tour… I think it all added to writing some grittier tunes.


Where does the name Transfer come from?

It was actually the name of one of the first songs every written as Transfer. We felt that the title summed up the feeling at the time – we were in a very transitional period, both musically and personally. Of course, in hindsight we would have named the band something else… the name doesn’t really lend itself to a google search.

What’s the favorite drink(s) on the road?

Pre-show: Pabst Blue Ribbon
After-show: Jack and Coke
After-after-show: Absinthe

How do you entertain yourselves when traveling from gig to gig?

We have various methods of entertainment while traveling in our vansion – attempting to build perches out of gear and sleeping bags, drawing spot-on caricatures of bands we play with, drawing penises on the foreheads of passed out mates… lots of drawing. We’re very artistic, I guess.

What do you do when not on tour or playing music?

We go back to our pods, re-insert our feeding tubes, and hibernate until the next tour.

Where is the best place to gig?

We primarily gig the West Coast and Southwest in the US. For me, the best gigs are at sweaty dive bars that have open bar tabs for the bands. You set up your gear on the ground, play way too loud, and get really drunk. The band plays for drinks and the money at the door…that’s fu**in’ rock n’roll.

What is your recording procedure in the studio?

We usually have a real clear-cut idea of the material we’re recording and how we will record it… we’re very big on pre-production to save time and cost in the studio. We dial in tones starting with the drums, then lay down the basic tracks focusing on drums and bass. Then comes the magic…layers upon layers of sounds. We believe in laying down way too many tracks, then whittling this down during mix. This can be a real pain in the ass, but it’s definitely worth it.

Who is your favorite monkey?

Dr. Zaius, of course. That cold-hearted monkey son-of-a-bitch.

What musicians inspired you to form a band?

Too many to list in this interview… our musical inspirations run the spectrum of genres. Anything honest inspires us. Unfortunately a lot of new music today sounds pretty fake. Give us the real shit, man!

Can you tell us some of the guitar effects that you use?

Lotsa reverb, my man…big hall reverb! I usually use a combination of effects at any given time, reverb, slap back delay, backwards echo, tremolo, midgets beat-boxing… we try to run the effects gamut!!

What music are you listening to at the moment?

Music that gets the most plays in the vansion: The Besnard Lakes, Band of Horses, Tapes n’ Tapes, Led Zeppelin, The Shins, Wilco, Black Sabbath, M. Ward, ABBA.

How do you come up with your video concepts?

We haven’t delved that deeply into videos really… At this point, we’re fortunate to have some really talented friends who put together video ideas and setup of the shoots. We just roll along with the ideas. Recently, we’ve been coming up with some different video concepts we want to put together, but nothing that has come to fruition just yet.

I love the song “You Are the Wolf”. How do you conjure up such a sound?

Ahh yess, conjuring sound… we channeled the ancient spirits for that track!! Again, lotsa reverb. That was one of those songs that just about wrote itself…We jammed it out during some off time while touring in Washington. It’s one of those rare songs that was written very quickly, and hasn’t really changed at all from the original conception.

Do you get spooked out when you listen back to music that you’ve just recorded?

I think spooked may be the wrong word… analytical maybe? Hopeful? Embarrassed? I dunno…

Have you ever had a spiritual occurrence in the studio while recording?

Our drummer Cooper was once possessed by the spirit of Keith Moon while recording…He didn’t really play the drums at all, he just passed out and defecated himself. He claims he was possessed. Not sure if I buy it, though.

Transfer band members are:

Jason Cardenas (guitar/vocals)
Matt Molarius (vocals/guitar)
Jeremy Chambers (bass)
Mike Cooper (drums)

Transfer will be on tour in the UK with Leeds band Vib Gyor from October 18th – October 27th, 2007.

For more information go to:

Transfer Official Website
Transfer on Myspace