It's all too easy to make an album in this day and age. You rent out a studio, record one part, and then cut and paste it across the whole record. That happens partly because of fear. Putting your soul on tape is a scary thing. THE ALMOSTovercame that fear and did something completely different for not only themselves but modern rock as a whole. They holed up in a small room in Nashville's Omni Studios for only five days and played every note of their third full-length album, FEAR INSIDE OF OUR BONES (Tooth & Nail/EMI/Universal), together in unison.
Now, there's an overwhelming thunder on the horizon. It's the sound of a band realizing its potential. It's the sound of life. It's the sound of THE ALMOST.
The group made the decision to record the album in the same room completely live, and the album was born in their collective blood, sweat, and tears.“Itwasn't a piecemeal process as the majority of modern records are,” explains lead vocalist, lyricist and guitarist AARON GILLESPIE.With a little help from producer Marshall Altman (Tom Morello, Ingrid Michaelson, William Fitzsimmons), the music was made live over the course of merely five days. “It’s something none of us have ever done and with the time crunch, we were surprised how tight of a live band we’ve finally become.Thematically, we bounced the entire record off using anxiety as our backboard."
THE ALMOSThave come a long way since the release of their 2007 debut, Southern Weather(Tooth & Nail/Virgin) which hit the Billboard Top 200 chart at #39 with 29,000 copies sold in its first week and spawned their first single “Say This Sooner” which hit Top Ten at Alternative Radio. In the aftermath, the current lineup--AARON GILLESPIE(lead vocalist, lyricist and guitarist), JAY VILARDI [guitars], DUSTY REDMON[guitars], JON THOMPSON [bass], and JOE MUSTEN [drums]—had solidified, and they played to rabid crowds around the world. In 2009, the group delivered Monster, Monster which Alternative Press hailed “a time-release painkiller: Once the emotionally charged rock gets into your system, its’ good for a long-lasting buzz” (November 2009). After touring with Paramore, The Starting Line, The Used and a trek on the Vans Warped Tour the acclaimed group performed on Jimmy Kimmel Live!and have gone on to sell over 300,000 albums.
"We've always been polished in the studio," says Vilardi. "We never quite got the live energy down. We became a great live unit on the Monster, Monster cycle because we were busier than we'd ever been. That played into the vibe of this record. On stage, Aaron is a fireball of energy. We share anxiety. We're anxious little dudes, and you can hear that in the record because it's live."
"That's why it's got a gritty, dirty vibe," Gillespie goes on. "We went for it. We did Monster, Monster the traditional way. We spent a ton of money on a massive studio and all of these things we didn't need. It was amazing doing everything live. I'll do records like this for the rest of my life. We wanted to be on a time crunch so we only booked the studio for five days."
In those five days, the musicians tapped into elegantly visceral rock energy. Album opener "Ghost" echoes with unbridled blues intensity before converging on a divinely heavy refrain.
"The broken guitar sound at the beginning—the two notes that start our record—are my two favorite notes I've ever played," Vilardi laughs. "It's the perfect starting point.
About the lyrics, Gillespie reveals, "You have to test yourself. So often, we take things that we see and hear at face value. With yourself, you can't do that. You've got to test everything. You can't trust yourself until you've tested yourself. You've got to run your thinking through the lens."
Meanwhile, the first single "I'm Down" steams ahead like a swaggering Southern freight train before the singer carries a soulful chorus proclaiming, "Don't count me out."
"Musically, it's one of the rawest songs," Gillespie explains. "It's about relationships. For me, I felt like I failed someone and I was wondering if I could even give anything else. In a relationship, you get to that point where you wonder if you've failed so bad the other person will even accept anything else from you. You have to show the change in your heart and life for it to work."
Vilardi continues, "It's indicative of where we come from. This is a rock 'n' roll band, and people will hear that."
Across the entire album, Gillespie continues to wear his heart on his sleeve. He doesn't hold anything back within the lyrics or music. "I want to make music that I believe in," he proclaims. "I want people to trust that I'm being honest. I'm not so concerned about moving units or anything like that. It's about being honest with people. I want everyone to realize this is real. This is my life and reality."
"First and foremost, we have to like what we're doing," adds Vilardi. "That's such a crucial component of all of this. We need to make it as meaningful and great as we can. We need to completely believe in what we do, and that's the case with this album."
Amidst all of the thundering rhythms and massive riffs, The Almost's honesty resounds the loudest. "There's hope," Gillespie concludes. "People are free to feel the way they feel and go through what they're going through. We're free to hurt. We're free to live. I think music is the best vehicle to spread that. Music is the great communicator. This is my soundtrack, heartbeat, and who I want to be. I hope everyone feels like this record belongs to them."


Palisades, formerly known as Marilyn Is Dead, has further reinforced and redefined their sound. Armed with a combination of post-hardcore and pop-punk influences, Palisades adds an entire new element of emotion to their rich, big sound. Strong, catchy choruses, along with aggressive melodic screaming are combined with more contemporary breakdowns, adding a very unique and distinct character to their music. Having recently recorded at Chango Gridlock Studios in Orlando Florida, Palisades plans to release their EP, and continue frequent touring.

Sugar Glyder

Charlotte, NC surely has something to call their own in SUGAR GLYDER – a dynamic blend of pop, ambience, and grit. Some instant question marks might cross one's mind, the first being – WHAT IS A SUGAR GLYDER? The answer: a primarily nocturnal marsupial with a pungent odor and bizarre noise habits; somewhat fitting for a rock band touring the country in a van. All joking aside, the real truth behind the name lies in its longevity and survival. Sugar gliders maintain the ability to glide for incredibly long distances with their legs stretched, giving them a true advantage over the world at large. The real-life human SUGAR GLYDER – Daniel Howie, Chris Rigo, Robby Hartis and Bobby Mathews – share this life-advantage in their truly charismatic debut album The Eyes: They See (TETS), produced by none other than Steven Haigler (The Pixies, Brand New, As Tall As Lions).

Avalon Landing

With a strong combination of pioneering attitude, reckless life choice and good timing, Avalon Landing came together during the Summer of 2011. With just two visits to Las Vegas under their belts, core members Josh Rabenold (keys/vocals) and Clayton Cobb (lead guitar/backing vocals) made the 2500 mile move across the USA to join their long time friend Mike Vargovich (guitar/vocals) for a music project that had been years in the making. Rounding out their roster Avalon Landing found John Lloyd (drums) and Corey Surratt (bass/backing vocals), both of whom cut their teeth with the band on their Southwestern tour in support of Avalon Landing’s first full length effort Reside. The 13 song collection was released in November of 2013 with the guidance of Grammy nominated engineer and producer Bryan Russell (NGHBRS, The Narrative, Volbeat, Coldplay).

From their inception Avalon Landing has hit the ground running, making a name for themselves within the Las Vegas music scene playing shows at prominent venues such as the Bunkhouse, House of Blues, Beauty Bar and Hard Rock Live on the Strip. The band has also branched throughout the Southwest visiting Los Angeles, Phoenix, Provo, and Denver in an effort to gain regional traction amongst music fans.

Avalon Landing’s well written and carefully crafted songs, along with their powerful and concise live performances have gained the band notoriety amongst their peers, the press, and the promoters for whom they’ve played. This strong reputation has opened several doors for the band, including not one but two invitations to open for fellow Las Vegans Imagine Dragons at Hard Rock Live on the Strip where the Las Vegas mega success celebrated the release of their critically acclaimed EP and eventually their platinum album “Night Visions.”

As Avalon Landing continues to push forward, their momentum holds true. During the spring of 2014 the band entered and won the Las Vegas Hard Rock Rising competition. The band went on to compete as a finalist in the world wide competition, representing the city of Las Vegas.

Avalon Landing can be seen live around the valley regularly, as well as heard on several Las Vegas radio stations. The official singles of
Avalon Landing’s full length Reside, “About Face” and “No Apology” have been spotlighted consistently on Las Vegas’ x107.5, Mix94.1, and Komp 92.3, attesting to the bands ability to write honest and relatable songs that find room on both pop and rock/alternative radio stations alike.

Keep an eye out for new music from Avalon Landing. Though their full length record has yet to hit its one year anniversary the band plans to release new music in both the fall and coming spring. They continue to be present in the Las Vegas music scene as well as on the road in the Southwest. Do not hesitate to catch this dynamic group in action if given the chance. With each show and each song written, Avalon Landing up their game, pushing further their songwriting craft and the production of their live performances.

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