Dorothy "The Freedom Tour"

Standing there in her full rock regalia, messy hair, leather boots, and that glimmerof confidence in her eyes,Dorothy Martin, singer/songwriter and namesake of the Los Angeles rock band Dorothy, takes the microphonein superstar producer Linda Perry's studioand goes into full rock star mode. She was on fire. She thought she nailed it. Not quite. "I was like, 'Idon't know what's up with you," recalls Perry (P!nk, Christina Aguilera, Gwen Stefani), who produced, engineered, and co-wrote several tracks on Dorothy's second full-length album, 28 Days in the Valley, for Jay Z's Roc Nation."You just made this incredible band sound like fucking shit and there's not one vocal Ican keep here. Are you drunk?"The singer was up partying until 5 a.m., so when she rolled into the studio at 11 a.m. the effects of the night were on full display. So Perry, who also manages the band, kicked Dorothy out of the studio with this firm warning: "If you feel you can't do this, tell me now because you're wasting my time. You are better than this. Call your sponsor, go to a meeting, get your shit together because these songs are great and we are going to make a fucking great record."It was a major turning point, for sure. "Ihitmyrockbottomthatday,"admitstheBudapest-born,SanDiego-raisedartist.Isoundedlikeshit.Ifeltlikeshit.Ilookedlikeshit.Iwasmakingmybandsuck.Iwaserratic.Iwascrying.Lindasatmedownandhandedmemyass."Itwasthewake-upcalltheartistneeded.Itwasthatofaphoenixrisingfromtheashesmoment.Martinbegantolookinsidefortheanswersandfoundthestrong,confident,empoweredwomanthatshehadbeenhiding.Notonlydidshemakeanevolutionaryturnasanindividualandartist,buttheband—whichalsoincludesguitarist Owen Barry, guitarist Leroy Wulfmeier, bassist Eliot Lorango, and drummer Jason Ganberg—made that "fucking great record" Perry had hoped for."Itwasveryhumbling,butnecessary,"saysMartin."Thiswasaspiritualjourneyandveryhealing,andbecauseofthatit'sanunapologeticallyhonestrecord.SomehowLindaknewIhadmoretogiveasasingerandwriter.Iusedtohidebehindthetoughgirlsound,butshetaughtmethatthereispowerinmyvulnerabilityandthat'swhatyougetonthisrecord.""Flawless,"thefirstsingle,isoneofthosevulnerablesongs.Theboot-stompingrockerkicksoffthe13-trackalbumwiththeheartbreakinglyrics,"Yousaidyoulovedme,butyouthrewmeoutinthegarbage/NowI'mstartingtostinkbuteverybodythinksI'mflawless,"butbytheendofthesongMartin'spainturnstoanupliftingfeel-good
anthemofloveasshesings,"Comingoutofallmydarkness/NowthatI'mflawless/Canyoufeelit?/Canyoufeelit?""It'saboutanexwhoreallydidanumberonme,"revealsMartin."Thisonecamefasttome.Itwasverysubconscious...likeI'mchannelingthem.Lindapulledthelightnessoutofme,bothpersonallyandmusically.Thisrecordisdefinitelystillbold,butit'shappier.It'skindoflikethebutterflycomingoutofthecocoon,whichiswhythebandlogonowisabutterfly."Thebluesyrocker,"PrettyWhenYou'reHighBoy,"divesfurthertheemotionalrollercoasterofherbadromanticchoices."We've all dated that beautiful boy who likes the ganjatoo much. He looks like an angel, but was anything but. It's kind of an ode to those surfer stoner boys and girls of the world. I worked out a lot of stuff on this record," she laughs.Evenwithmoretendermoments,28DaysintheValleystillhasthein-your-facebluesy,grittyrockandrollfanslovedon2016'sROCKISDEAD,andtheirrecentstandalonesingle,"DownTotheBottom,"whichhitNo.35onBillboard'sMainstreamRockchartandwhichRollingStonecalledthe"perfect mix of blues thunder and alt-rock guitar crunch."But,addedtothatthunderthistimearoundaremorelayersofemotionfueledbylessmetal,moreCaliforniadesertrockvibes.Thepowerful'60s-tinged"WhoDoYouLove"takesyoudownthefastlaneofpsychedelicdesertrockperfection,while"Ain'tOurTimeToDie"harkensbacktotheband'strademarkdirtyrocksensibilities.Therecordtakesseveralupliftingturnsasheardon"Mountain,""Freedom,"and"WhiteButterfly"whereit'shardnottofeelthespiritualjourneyandawakeningDorothyhasembarkedon.It's the kind of record that has a pulse and beckons to be played live from beginning to end... and there's a good reason for that. "We recorded the old-school way like the Stones did. After writing, we did a good amount of pre-production and worked out the energy and vibe of the songs and then we went in and recorded live, usually in just a few takes. Nothing on this record is programmed. It's raw and real and honest," explains Martin, who led meditation sessions with her band before each session to set the right intention and loving energy. ComingoffanalbumwithasmuchcriticalacclaimandfanloveasROCKISDEAD—whichhitNo.1onBillboard'sHeatseekersChart,No.5onTopHardRockAlbums,andfeaturedtwosongs("RaiseHell"and"DarkNights")intheTop40onBillboard'sMainstreamRockchart—canbeintimidatingformostbandsgoingintotheirsophomorerecord.CriticscomparedMartintosomeofthegreatestfemaleartistsofourtime,suchasAmyWinehouse,PattiSmith,andGraceSlick,evencallingher"arevvedupAdeleteetering on the brink of chaos."The praise was equal for the band as Rolling Stonemagazinenamed Dorothy one of the best 50 Best New Artists,while Billboardlikened the group's "Wicked Ones,"
which was featured in Levi's and Gatorade spots,to a blend of Black Sabbath and the White Stripes, and Vice's Noisey dubbed "After Midnight," which featured actress/model Suki Waterhousein the music video, "the perfect modern rock concoction."Those kind of accolades are enough to make any young band shake in their boots. But, not Dorothy. "I had no fear coming into this record," Martin proudly states. "We were in capable hands and I finally felt empowered to be even more of a songwriter than I was before. I finally learned to trust my intuition and my heart, and to get out of my head. You know, themainmessageofthisalbumistonotliveinfear;it'stotransformeverythinginyourlifetobeonthefrequencyoflove,whichissopowerfulandallhealing.That'swhatthisrecordisallabout."

Wielding airtight songcraft and a genre-defying sound that proves 808s and guitars can coexist in harmony, Spirit Animal make music that both bottles and transcends the moment. The Brooklyn, NY-based band – singer Steve Cooper, guitarist Cal Stamp, drummer Ronen Evron, and bassist Paul Michel – made a striking debut with 2013’s viral smash, “The Black Jack White,” quickly earning them more than a million plays on Spotify alone. Relentless touring followed, as did 2016’s debut EP, WORLD WAR IV, highlighted by another hit single, “Regular World,” which drew more than 3 million Spotify streams worldwide. As a result, Spirit Animal has received major attention from a variety of high profile media outlets, including Consequence of Sound, Entertainment Weekly, and The Washington Post.

Taco Mouth is the staunchly political brainchild of Erica Sellers, who grew up in Louisville, KY and began her musical journey in 1999 after begging her parents for a guitar. In the summer of 2011, after playing in several bands, Sellers decided to start one of her own. This new project led to her meeting drummer Angela Lese through a mutual friend. They hit it off, socially and musically, and started a band called CatFight. Erica wrote all the music and lyrics, and the band signed to a local label, Little Heart Records, publishing their self-titled EP in 2011. After gaining regional notoriety, Lese relocated to Nashville in 2012, making it difficult for CatFight to play shows. After immersing herself in the Nashville music scene, Angie pleaded with her best friend to move to town so they could continue performing together. By the time Erica moved in the late fall of 2013, Angie had already started playing music with three other girls in town. Eventually, Erica was invited to one of the rehearsals, and that night a new band, The Dead Deads, were born. After several national tours and two full-length albums, Erica and Angie left The Dead Deads in October of 2017 and have gone back to their roots of having fun and making music that matters most to them, morphing their love for old school, angsty rock 'n roll and dance music into one.



In late 2017, Taco Mouth was born, a mash-up of 60s-era rock and pop hooks; think the Ramones and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, or The Runaways and Awolnation. They’ve since added their very talented lead guitarist Shawn Hammer (engineer of Chevelle, Conor Oberst, Cursive) and badass bassist Flip Cooper (Damon Johnson, Brother Cane). Taco Mouth is produced by the master himself, Michael Wagener (Dokken, Metallica, Skid Row, etc.), and together they’ve created what feels like a true musical reemergence. Politics and partying; rock grooves and pop hooks; a movement. No matter how you categorize Taco Mouth, they’ll make you experience a night similar to the old CBGB days where rock mattered. The underdog mattered. That’s what this Taco Mouth movement is all about.



This year, Taco Mouth has already released an EP entitled ‘W.G.A.F.’ (available now on iTunes, Spotify, Amazon, Google Play), which has been nominated for NIMA’s Best Rock Album by their peers (nimadigital.com). The video from the first single off of the EP, Let’s Get a Little Bit, is available on YouTube. And if that wasn’t enough, the band has had a busy summer recording their first, full-length album with Wagener, and booking shows opening for large rock acts (Beasto Blanco, MC5, etc.). Their new album will include four newly recorded songs off of their EP, as well as six brand new songs. From drunken nights to taking down bullies, and even defying the president, the album is full of head-shaking hooks, and most importantly, the fire that fuels punk rock music. Look for Taco Mouth’s new album, ‘A Deafening Silence,’ to be released in late October.

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