SICK PUPPIES

SICK PUPPIES

Connect is the perfect title for Sick Puppies’ third and most ambitious album. The trio is all
about connection--with their fans, each other, their own psyches—and each of the dozen songs
on Connect--from intense, epic rockers to mellower yet lyrically anguished ballads--is
introspective yet also universal. From the first single, “There’s No Going Back” to the band’s
most political song, the ironic “Gunfight,” Connect will exhilarate old fans and captivate new
ones. The L.A.-based, Australian-bred band struck an elusive musical and lyrical balance of past
and future on Connect, as band co-founder/singer/guitarist Shimon Moore explains: “There are
two ways to shoot yourself in the foot—never changing… or changing too much.” With
Connect, Sick Puppies came into their own, thanks in no small part to five years of touring and a
full year of songwriting, finding their musical medium without sacrificing intensity or their
trademark, dead-on lyrical acuity and introspection.
Since the release of Tri-Polar (nearly half a million units to date and over 2 million single sold)
and its slew of radio hits—the #1 Rock track "You're Going Down,” the Top Five Modern
Rock/Active Rock hits "Odd One” & “Riptide” and the cross-format anthemic smash "Maybe."
Connect (out July 16, 2013), with its melding of room-filling rockers and edgy yet poignant
lyrics, is poised to be the lineup’s best-selling record yet. Moore explains how Connect evolved:
“We’ve always had the colors to work with, but we really got to use some broad strokes in Polar
Opposite, our 2011 reimagined acoustic record. It was always a dream of mine to work with
strings and a choir, and our producer made it kinda trippy and unusual on Polar Opposite. So I
was looking forward to taking some of the elements of that, and furthering some melodies and
sentiments of [2007’s US debut] Dressed Up As Life, and the heaviness from Tri-Polar. It’s an
amalgamation of all into one, which is why I think it’s our best work to date.”
Produced, as was Tri-Polar, by the Rock Mafia production team of Tim James and Antonina
Armato, Connect also took guidance from another, very pure source: the trio’s legions of fans.
With face-to-face and online interaction with Sick Puppies World Crew, the band listened when
followers said they loved their agro side, yet also wanted more of bassist/co-founder Emma
Anzai’s vocals. Indeed, Anzai comes into her own on Connect, with more vocal presence on
songs like “Die To Save You”, “Telling Lies” & debuts her lead vocal on “Under A Very Black
Sky”. Though the whole band contributes to songwriting, she takes particular pride in “Healing
Now.” “It’s got my bass riff at the beginning, like ‘Odd One’ on our previous record,” she notes.
“And on ‘There’s No Going Back’ I love that while it’s slightly nostalgic and a little melancholy,
it’s also uplifting. Our ballads can be sweet, but at the same time, the content is quite painful,
and I like that contrast.”
The band, co-founded in 1999 by Moore and Anzai while still in high school, signed to Paul
Stepanek Management, soon after they rounded out their line up by adding Orange County,
California-bred drummer Mark Goodwin, who they met through a classified ad following their
move to LA in 2006. Soon after, signed to Paul Palmer’s indie label through Virgin Records, a
fortuitous video pairing with a friend led Sick Puppies to online fame with the song “All The
Same” (AKA the Free Hugs video), which earned an astonishing 75-million-plus views
worldwide, and led to appearances on Oprah, 60 Minutes, CNN, Good Morning America, and
The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. Other outside-the-box endeavors also pepper the band’s
impressive resume. Sick Puppies were featured on Cinemax’s Tour Stories, a five-part
documentary about the band; “You’re Going Down” was the official theme for the WWE’s
“Extreme Rules”; plus, as dedicated road dogs, playing over 750 shows in North America,
they’ve shared the stage with bands including Muse, Tool, The Killers, Papa Roach and
Deftones.
The years of touring are evident not only in the tight, intuitive playing on Connect, but also in the
lyrics, which proved cathartic for the group. “We’ve been on the road five or six years straight,”
Moore notes. “And when you come back to ‘real life,’ everything is different, and you don’t
realize until you have a moment to breathe. Your parents have gray hair, stores have moved,
Twitter happened, the world vomited a whole new culture while we were out playing rock ‘n’
roll!” he notes. Grappling with those changes and emotions lend an intimate searching to many
of Connect’s sound and words. “You’re like, ‘where did the time go,’ and that’s exactly the title
of one of our songs.”
As for the concept of connecting, Moore observes that “there are only a few things every single
person in the world has in common. One is that we all need each other. To have a song
[“Connect”] that captures that is pretty special.” While most of the songs on Connect were
written in 2012, the album’s title track “Connect” contains the oldest riff in Moore’s musical
arsenal. “It’s fun; I wrote it while in high school learning how to play guitar, and I always had it
in my back pocket,” the singer recalls. “I’ve brought it up on every record, but wasn’t right.”
Finally, though his eternal riff found its perfect chorus—with a little banjo added for good
measure.
Drummer Goodwin notes: “We’re a career band. We want to build and take the time to make
things right. The first time we ever jammed it was a massive wall of sound; amazing for a trio.
It’s been that way ever since. On Connect, we went more for ‘big’ rather than ‘heavy.’ We did a
lot of percussion--tambourines and shakers—and that’s rounded us out when we play
acoustically as well.”
The third time is the charm on Connect. With two powerful albums and three varied EP’s
preceding it, Connect ties the Sick Puppies sound and vibe together and sets the stage for future
aural adventures in all shapes and sizes. To wit: the persuasive lyrics of “Run,” which is a
favorite of Moore’s, contains his personal mantra in lines such as: “You better run as fast as you
can / cause this world tries to stop you, stop you, stop you / whenever it can.” He confesses, “I
only subscribe to that half the time, so it’s good to have a song you can sing to yourself for
inspiration as much as to your audience!” Even with Connect’s myriad lyrical and musical
layers, the record still manages to breathe. “I believe that we succeeded in making an album that
will stand the test of time,” Moore concludes with a laugh. “At least I hope so!”

After a year and a half on the road touring 2010's Feeding The Wolves, 10 Years reached a turning point. It was time to move forward and take full control of their career by launching their own label, Palehorse Records. In addition, the band decided to self-produce their fourth album, Minus the Machine, at drummer/guitarist Brian Vodinh's Kashmir Recording.

Splitting up with a major label after
five years was "a very scary step to take," Hasek admits. "It's like breaking up with a longtime girlfriend. You're used to the motions, but when it becomes stale and unhappy, you need to move on and get energy back into your life. There was no anger on either side. We just painlessly parted ways."

Working together as a band for the first time since writing the Gold-selling album The Autumn Effect helped 10 Years go back to their roots, without label-enforced pressure to create a radio-friendly "hit," and free to experiment with the hard rock sounds that lie at the core of their music. "Our true fans who buy the albums, not just the singles, understand that our singles, for the most part, misrepresent the entire album," says Hasek. "As a band, we like to explore more and go a little left of center with song structures. We wanted to create an album that has no boundaries, and where we didn't have to make every song 'three minutes and 30 seconds' for a label to approve it. There's a fine line with that, of course, and we're very aware of it. We all grew up on rock music, and as many albums as we've written, the way we've written them, it's ingrained in us to work within a time frame that fits radio. There are definitely songs that work well for that, but as a whole, we wanted this album to represent a journey in a sense."

This chapter of 10 Years began in 2001, when Hasek took over as vocalist. Three years later they released their independent album, Killing All That Holds You, featuring the groundbreaking single "Wasteland," which led to their signing with Universal Records. "That song was created in 2001 or 2002," says Hasek. "We weren't seeking to write a smash single. We were just writing music." The Autumn Effect (2005) led to widespread radio and video play, a fiercely loyal fan base, and tours with heavyweights like Linkin Park, Korn and the Deftones. When their sophomore effort, Division, was released in 2008, 10 Years had cemented their place as one of hard rock's top contenders and most sought-after live bands. Still, says Hasek, despite the success, "it all came to a head" with the band's 3rd major label release, Feeding The Wolves. "When you feel like you're being told to go through motions and jump through hoops, it takes the heart out of it," he says. "We know that we need a hit and we understand that it's important. However, as musicians, we're not a band that says, 'We're going to make a hit.' It's better to do what comes naturally and then figure out the after-effect."

With that in mind, 10 Years created their most powerful songs to date for Minus The Machine, with Hasek again relying on personal experiences for his lyrics. [Insert something about the songs here; reference titles and content.] "Everyone asks about my inspiration for lyrics, and the best thing I can give them is a very generic answer: life," he says. "Life is the experience — it's everything you go through: the ups, the downs. I tend to gravitate more toward the therapy method. I'm not great at writing happy pop songs. So, I usually get the negative emotions out through music. As a person, I'm very happy and thankful for my life, but when it comes to lyrics, it's therapy for me."

One thing that won't change is 10 Years' connection with their fans. With the release of Minus The Machine, the band is looking forward to hitting the road, performing in close contact with their dedicated audience. "After the last touring cycle, we realized where we should strive to be, and that's to be totally fine in the club environment," says Hasek. "We don't plan to chase after arena rock or amphitheaters. If things like that happen, then so be it, but we live and die by the loyalty of the club audiences. Our fans are loyal. They travel with us, and they want us to be loyal to ourselves. That's what keeps them coming back. What we tried to do on this album is really give them what they want and what they need because they've been so good to us through the ups and downs of our career."

"First and foremost, when it's all said and done, we're proud of this album in its entirety," he says. "That speaks volumes to us because we're our own worst critics. We pick everything apart. An album is your child, it's your baby, and you know it better than anyone. To sit back and be 100 percent proud of what we've accomplished is so gratifying, and we think everything else will fall into place. We hope that everyone will enjoy what we've tried to do."

Charming Liars

Charming Liars – Charlie Cosser (Vocals), Karnig Manoukian (Guitar) & Mike Kruger
(Bass) – have quite a story to tell.

September 2012 marked the completion of a debut album that had been several years in the making. Having come together in London, in 2005 the boys quickly began to write songs and spent a large part of their youth balancing their aspirations for the band with the task of completing their education. After self-releasing a 4-track E.P back in 2010 the band sat down to consider their options moving forward. 'We had collectively always wanted to write and record the biggest sounding album we possibly could' says Charlie, 'it was becoming too difficult to juggle the responsibilities of university and jobs with the full time nature of a working rock band'.

During the spring of 2011 after an initial visit to California, they guys decided it would be in the best interest of the band to drop out of university, quit their jobs back home and take a chance on the other side of the pond.

Fast forward to 2013 and the bands ambitious risk is beginning to pay off. With a debut album completed – production duties eventually falling to Bob Rock (Metallica, Aerosmith, Motley Crue) and John Fields (Andrew WK, Switchfoot, Jimmy Eat World) – Charming Liars release a taster of the fruits of their labour in the no-nonsense rocker 'Break Away'.

Having already made their mark on the infamous Sunset Strip with buzzing shows at the Viper Room and Whiskey a go-go amongst others, it's obvious that there is still a great demand for quality guitar music and whilst rock as a genre has not been at the forefront of the mainstream in recent years, Charming Liars look set to be a key player in its return.

During the spring of 2011 after an initial visit to California, they guys decided it would be in the best interest of the band to drop out of university, quit their jobs back home and take a chance on the other side of the pond.

Fast forward to 2013 and the bands ambitious risk is beginning to pay off. With a debut album completed – production duties eventually falling to Bob Rock (Metallica, Aerosmith, Motley Crue) and John Fields (Andrew WK, Switchfoot, Jimmy Eat World) – Charming Liars release a taster of the fruits of their labour in the no-nonsense rocker 'Break Away'.

Having already made their mark on the infamous Sunset Strip with buzzing shows at the Viper Room and Whiskey a go-go amongst others, it's obvious that there is still a great demand for quality guitar music and whilst rock as a genre has not been at the forefront of the mainstream in recent years, Charming Liars look set to be a key player in its return.

$18.00 - $20.00

Tickets

add to your calendar

Who’s Going

Upcoming Events
Buster's

Ticketfly

SICK PUPPIES with 10 Years, Charming Liars

Thursday, October 17 · Doors 8:00 PM / Show 9:00 PM at Buster's