Hollywood Undead

Hollywood Undead

The streets of Hollywood are paved with dreams.

Most of those dreams are broken, others are buried, and some are simply burned. On their new album, American Tragedy, Hollywood Undead dissect those very same dreams with a volatile and vibrant hip hop swagger, a magnificent metallic crunch, and a danceable industrial soul. At the heart of the band's second release for A&M/Octone, these six musicians—Johnny 3 Tears, J-Dog, Charlie Scene, Da Kurlzz, Funny Man, and Danny—rhyme and rock from sharply hilarious jabs about vacuous clubs to unbridled, poignant musings on losing faith and struggling with addiction. Due out April 5, 2011, American Tragedy peeks at the death of the American dream from the rooftop of the hottest party in the world. This second offering from Hollywood Undead is a sanctuary for the disillusioned masses that made the band a Gold-selling sensation. It's a middle finger to the safe, burdensome "norm." It's the future of heavy pop…

Hollywood Undead have been staring at that future from the moment they burst onto the scene with their breakout 2008 debut, Swan Songs. Since its release, Swan Songs has exceeded sales of 800,000 worldwide and is quickly approaching platinum status. The band embarked on a two-year world tour that saw them play countless sold out headline shows as well as prestigious festivals such as the UK's Download Festival. In addition, the album's leadoff single "Undead" received prominent placements in the trailer for Paramount's hit film, G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra and Madden NFL 2009. In 2009, the band released the Desperate Measures DVD/CD capturing their magnetic madness on stage. The collection also featured a few unreleased gems and covers. However, everything merely serves as a prelude to American Tragedy.

Hollywood Undead began constructing American Tragedy in early 2010. Collaborating with producers Don Gilmore, Griffin Boice, and S*A*M and Sluggo, the band tapped into a myriad of influences and styles, yielding music that's as diverse and dangerous. American Tragedy's first single, "Hear Me Now," is an anthemic catharsis of guitars and synths, colored by these six distinct voices. At the same time, "Been To Hell" creeps from an ominous bass line into full-blown aural assault and battery during a distorted refrain. "I Don't Wanna Die" is a funeral march for any and all enemies in Hollywood Undead's path. Meanwhile, "Comin' In Hot" could set any dance floor off with slickly sharp rhymes and "Levitate" floats into mainstream crossover territory on a soaring chorus.

For Hollywood Undead, American Tragedy was a natural progression from Swan Songs. About the band's sophomore album, J-Dog exclaims, "Similar to our first record, there's something for everybody. Some of the songs have bigger hooks, while others are a lot heavier. We wanted to expand our creative palette as a band and grow. We wrote the first album years ago. Mentally, we're not in the same place we were then. We got better at what we do lyrically and musically. We wanted to experiment more and embrace new elements. It's heavier at points because we are a rock band, for the most part."

Johnny 3 Tears goes on, "American Tragedy is what Hollywood Undead is. We can incorporate anything into the landscape of our songs. There are no boundaries. Musically, I like songs that go against the grain. I want to create art that doesn't conform to the status quo. We choose to take everything a step beyond that."

"Hear Me Now" encapsulates that sentiment. Blending an arena rock stomp with rap attitude, the song's a venomous and vicious strike. All six members hunkered down in the same Hollywood rehearsal room to write "Hear Me Now" together, and it brandishes the intricacies and idiosyncrasies of all their personalities. On December 21, the band officially released "Hear Me Now" digitally, and within two short days, it hit number 2 on the iTunes rock chart. The song covers the current state of affairs, calling listeners to arms.

"Obviously, it's a struggling song," declares Johnny 3 Tears. "Everyone is going through a rough time, and the song is very appropriate for this day and age. We aimed to make something that you can sing along to, and the message gets delivered in between."

One song that examines hopelessness is the bludgeoning "Been to Hell." In between a wall of raging rhythms and angry rhymes, the band comments on failed purposes. "Growing up in Los Angeles, we've seen a lot of people come out here with grandiose ambitions and, 99.9 percent of the time, they don't do shit," continues J-Dog. "They end up partying, getting on drugs, and just going home. You've got to go through those hardships to actualize your dreams. The song's about getting off your ass and working towards a higher goal. I hope it actually inspires someone to follow through with what they say."

Hollywood Undead continue to work themselves to the bone. Every night on tour, they spill blood for packed venues of diehard fans all over the world, and they'll continue that tradition. There's no doubt that every track on American Tragedy will resonate with those fans too. J-Dog states, "People are having a hard time right now, and kids go through the same problems everywhere. I feel lucky that they come to our shows, and it's their release for an hour."
Songs like "Levitate" and "Street Dreams" show another side of Hollywood Undead. The band's sense of humor remains in tact, but they also brandish a pop prowess that's simply undeniable. About touting so many styles, Johnny 3 Tears exclaims, "I want fans to feel like they got their money's worth with a full album you can't categorize. This is a step up. We want to be a band that's special to kids. We want to signify what they feel. I'd love for them to have the same feeling I had when I listened to Korn or Nine Inch Nails as a kid."

That revolutionary spirit courses through American Tragedy, and the band place their hearts on the line for their music once again. J-Dog concludes, "As a band, we collectively put our blood, sweat, and soul into this. We couldn't have done anything better than we did, and we love it. We are honest, and kids connect with that. They know we're not bullshitting them. When you're true to yourself, people connect with you."
That connection to Hollywood Undead will only grow stronger with American Tragedy.

Stellar Corpes

Stellar Corpses are a hard working, high energy, DIY rock band from Santa Cruz, CA with a catchy concoction of punk and old-school rock n’ roll that appeals to people of all ages and lifestyles. What’s their secret to attracting such a diverse fan base? “Everyone has a dark side that’s just waiting to get out…” says singer, Dusty Sheehan “We just provide a safe and fun way to release that inner hellraiser!”

They are a Horror-Rockabilly and Punk band with melodic, fast-pased music. Their tight sounds and professionalism has gotten them spots on line ups with many well-known bands, including Tiger Army and The Meteors.

Stellar Corpses’ brand new album Dead Stars Drive-In was produced by Joe McGrath (AFI, Tiger Army, Alkaline Trio) and features guests spots by Hunter Burgan (AFI), Jade Puget (AFI) and Michale Graves (Misfits).

This is no overnight success story. Stellar Corpses met in high school and have been constantly touring, building a loyal base of DEADicated fans who are already sporting Stellar tattoos and painting their faces like the band’s highly recognizable skull logo with a star eye.

Stellar Corpses’ songs cover all sorts of subjects: “The title track, ‘Dead Stars Drive-In,’ is about the dark side of Hollywood and how some of its brightest stars, like Elvis, Marilyn, Bela Lugosi and Vampira eventually burned out. But to this day, their lights shine as bright as ever, and we will go on loving them always,” Dusty explains. Emilio reveals, “’Teenage Witchcraft’ is about being different…it’s simple, really. ’One More Day’ is about living your last day on earth to the fullest with no regrets and no apologies. ‘So Long Goodbye’ is a parallel of death and the end of a relationship.” “’Vampire Kiss’ is a nod to our hometown Santa Cruz, where the movie The Lost Boys was filmed. Its a powerful sing along that would frighten any glittery vampire out there,” Dan quips.

The band’s live show is dynamic and interactive with the fans. Emilio says, “We are like human buzz-saws live, we tear through our set with raw energy. I’d say get ready to sing with us, most of our songs are very anthem like and require the crowd to sing along. Its my favorite part, when the crowd actually knows the song and is singing along in my face…its the best payoff ever.”

Stellar Corpses are:
Dusty Sheehan – Vocals, Guitar
Dan Lamothe – Upright Bass, Vocals
Emilio Menze – Guitar, Vocals
Kyle Moore – Drums

Beware Of Darkness

Beware of Darkness is a bold, new power-trio of old souls, pissed at life in a modern age. They are ready to frighten your children, sleep with your daughters, and make you shake, scream, and contort like it's a Depression-Era Southern exorcism. They play fast moving rock songs with exploding key and rhythms changes mid-song. They also play slow-cooked, sexed-up bluesy things. Imagine Bowie's "Hunky Dory" with low, detuned, primal Zeppelin-esqe guitar riffs.

Their live shows have the emotional climaxes of a church revival; a fitting description as chief songwriter and guitarist, Kyle Nicolaides has, on multiple occasions, brought a gospel church of 200+ to their feet in standing ovation.

The rhythm section consists of Tony Cupito (drums) and Daniel Curcio (bass), who share a mutual respect and admiration for Blues, Gospel, and Motown music. They all met in LA, where Nicolaides moved to escape the Santa Barbara doldrums, and Curcio (a New Jersey native) was visiting after discovering he had a long lost half brother. The three came together to form Beware of Darkness, taking the name from a George Harrison song, and signed to Bright Antenna in late 2011.

Lyrically, Nicolaides cites literary influences, Sylvia Plath, Emily Dickenson, and David Foster Wallace. He delivers scathing lyrical content in a snarling howl tackling subject matters of depression, chaste women, pedophilic priests, and post-modern paranoia. Incredibly potent and precise, these are lyrics meant to evoke reactions.

They are here to divide, conquer and seduce, and are moving awfully quick. Beware of Darkness is here. Catch them if you can.

American Fang

American Fangs

Gabriel Cavazos (vocals)
Micah Miller (drums)
Kyle Shimek (bass, vocals)
Nik Slimp (guitar)
Beau Gobert (guitar)

This is not the story of a typical rock’n’roll band.

“In music, everybody wants to be part of something big,” explains American Fangs frontman
Gabe Cavazos. “But sometimes we zig when others zag. We stick out like a sore thumb. And
that’s ok. We create our own vibe.”

That vibe — loud guitars, big hooks, punk rock attitude — has already won American Fangs a
fervent fanbase and a number of big-name (and wildly diverse) tours, ranging from Saul
Williams to the Deftones to Chevelle. And it’s a vibe that’s more than apparent on the band’s
debut album, American Fangs, the first release under rock promoter/manager Bill McGathy’s
new record label In De Goot Recordings.

Typical or not, that’s a pretty strong start for any band, especially one hailing from the rather
atypical music Mecca of … Houston.

“It’s not necessarily what people think of when they look for great music,” admits Cavazos. “But
there’s a lot of talent here.”

At least enough talent to put together AF. “We all were in different groups, but we go together
because we realized we all had the same idea of what we wanted a band to be,” says the
singer. “And that’s grown into an amazing bond.”

That idea was American Fangs, a name that struck a strong visual tone and, as Cavazos puts it,
exuded the right “who-gives-a-shit” attitude….something the band also brought to the stage.
“There was a lot more anarchy early on,” Cavazos admits. “But it was exhausting, like musical
whiplash. In the end, we’re a fan of songs. We want to share those, have people enjoy it, and
not necessarily have anything else overshadow the music.”

One person who caught on early was Bill McGathy, a rock industry vet best known for his work
with Shinedown, Neon Trees, 3 Doors Down and Grammy-Award winning Halestorm. “He saw
us just as we started, and stuck by us from the get-go,” says Cavazos. “Finally, one day he just
said, ‘go record something. I wanna release this.”

To capture the band’s wild side on record, the band enlisted producer Mike Watts (As Tall as
Lions, The Dear Hunter, Brand New). “Mike’s really cool,” says Cavazos. “He saw us at a
showcase a long time back and he was the only person who came up and asked how we
thought we sounded. He saw our potential, but he doesn’t spare us any feelings if we sound like
shit. So when it came time to do this record, we were like ‘we want that guy.”

The end result is an adrenalized blast of loud guitar rock, underlined with dynamic musicianship
and emotional honesty. First single “Pomona,” named after “the goddess of fruitful abundance,”
is a revved-up radio anthem full of “whoa whoa whoa” chants. Meanwhile, other standouts like
“Riot Food” come off as cranked-up power pop, while “Apple of My Eye” recalls the best of 90s

But the band also shines during slower moments, like the ballad “Sorry” Says Cavazos: “That’s
about the brief period of time when I was homeless as a kid. That song means a lot to me. Mike
pushed me to dig deep on that one.”

With the record finished, the band is hitting the road with Hollywood Undead and Falling in
Reverse, and converting a whole new audience. “I’m psyched: people will see we’ve got an
energy when we play live,” Cavazos says. “There’s a rhythm there. You can tell we really
believe in what we’re doing.”

Just don’t expect a typical rock’n’roll concert.

“That’s true, though even I’ve had to tone it down a bit,” says Cavazos, laughing. “I can’t always
be in people’s faces or climbing stuff during every song. But it’s nice to go to a show and see
people cut loose, see girls having a blast. It’s something that’s been missing from music for a
while now.”

Tickets Available at the Door

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