A new online channel showcasing emerging music from around the world.
Andrew Seward (formerly of Against Me!) explores the furthest reaches of hardcore with Sound Off!, a new series set to premiere on Noisey. From veterans like OFF! and Chuck Ragan to newcomers like Youth Code, Rotting Out and Deafheaven, Sound Off! examines the people, places, and influences that surround bands that are pushing the envelope in 2014. Check out the trailer and look for the first episode of Sound Off! coming soon!
The Kid Mero is from the Bronx and eats, sleeps, and shits diamond-hard gems of realness. The only music he knows are the first two Mobb Deep albums, which play in a continuous loop in his head. Despite this (or because of this) we’ve been letting him review music for Noisey for over a year. Recently he told us he wanted to actually learn about music and scenes he doesn’t know anything about, so we sent him to see Pig Destroyer, at St. Vitus in Brooklyn, to learn about mosh pits, the brotherhood and loyalty of the grindcore scene, and taint maintenance (taintenance).
We’re almost a month away from the release of Black Lips’ new record, Underneath the Rainbow, which drops on March 18 on Vice Records. It’s their first full length album in three years and following up their single ”Boys In The Wood” and its accompanying video (It’s crazy, watch it here), they’re back with “Justice After All.”
In the fourth episode of Noisey’s Chiraq, we catch up extensively with Lil Durk, the next superstar of the Drill scene and go to a show with fellow 300 / OTF member Lil Reese.
It’s the night of Lollapalooza, but that doesn’t matter because inside and outside the venue, the crowd is packed to the walls. Afterwards, we roll through the South Side of Chicago with Durk and meet his family, learning about the life from which he came, and why he “terrifies the city.”
The members of Pussy Riot shocked Russia when they performed their “Punk Prayer” in a Moscow church back in February 2012. The group was protesting the growing closeness between church and state under Russian President Vladimir Putin, but they became international celebrities when three of the members of the feminist, punk-rock protest group were arrested by the Russian authorities a few weeks later.
Nadezhda Tolokonnikova and Maria Alyokhina were convicted of ”hooliganism motivated by religious hatred” and sentenced to two years in prison. With just two months of their sentence left, Nadya and Masha—as they’re known in Russia—were freed in a general amnesty by the Russian government. Most observers saw the move as an attempt to clean up Russia’s image before the 2014 Winter Olympic games in Sochi rather than a change in policy toward Putin’s opponents.
VICE correspondent Simon Ostrovsky met up with the band members in Moscow just a couple weeks after they were released to find out what they’re doing with their newfound freedom.
In the third episode of Noisey’s Chiraq, we pick up where we left off in Englewood, and get a taste of the new music coming from the area. Then we jump back across the country and join Chief Keef, Fredo Santana, and others wandering around Times Square. They say what’s up to Alien and Predator before heading backstage for some free styling as they prepare for a show.
WaveDream Nation: The Life of a Cruise Ship Entertainer
“I wanted to be Metallica when I grew up,” Brandon Rittenhouse of Hillsborough, NC tells me. Currently, he makes a living playing guitar and bass on cruise ships. He loves it. “It’s exactly like being a rockstar. The passengers think you’re a god.”
Still, he has no illusions that the job is just that—a job. “Everybody thinks that there’s this giant record producer that’s going to take a cruise and see you and want to book you. That’s simply not true. I’d love to be the next Nickelback or whatever, but I don’t think that’s going to happen. Nobody who sees you on the ship is going to remember you for the rest of their lives.”
One of the shittiest things you have to tell a kid is that their dreams probably aren’t going to come true. Take being a rock star, for example—most people who want to grow up to be a rich and famous musician are going to fail. Getting signed, putting out records, and playing shows to thousands of adoring fans is difficult, and given the harsh realities of the record industry, often not all that lucrative. For every person who successfully ekes together a living playing music full-time, there are hundreds who fail. Maybe they can’t sustain the pace of touring, maybe they aren’t distinctive enough, maybe they just can’t catch the lucky break that the guy who was opening for them at a shitty dive bar two years ago ended up catching.
But there are other ways to make a good living off of playing music, even if they aren’t so glamorous. It turns out that playing music for four hours a night for tourists you’ll never see again on a cruise ship is way more sustainable than putting out a seven-inch that leads to some shows that leads to getting a publicist that leads to getting a write-up on Pitchfork which leads to a tour which leads to your band getting in a fight over a bag of cocaine in Des Moines, Iowa, which leads to your band splitting up.
The people who work on cruise ships are uniformly fascinating, unique, and insightful individuals who have a singular perspective on the human condition. They also have insane stories—if you’re trapped on a fucking boat for months at a time, stuck with people you have nothing in common with, you are going to end up drinking with them to pass the time, and once you’re drunk you may end up fucking them. On top of that is the unspoken class distinctions at play—between performers and other crew members, Americans and those from developing nations, whites and non-whites. For some, working on a cruise ship is an adventure; for others it’s a chance to escape an impoverished nation.