Big Stories

POZ Discussion: Most Anticipated April Releases

by Zack Zarrillo - Mar 27, 2014

April is nearly here, and we’re continuing 2014 with a jam-packed month of releases that PropertyOfZack team members couldn’t be more stoked to hear. In today’s new Discussion, we’re highlighting our personal Most Anticipated April Releases. Check out our list below and feel free to reblog with what you’re looking forward to as well!

Manchester Orchestra - COPE
So far in 2014, many bands have laid claim to missing honest rock music: something that is devoid of frills and just simply kicks you in the gut while still maintaining a certain craft to it. Add Manchester Orchestra frontman Andy Hull to that long list; on the Georgia rock outfits fourth effort, Cope, Hull has promised nothing but a red and black color pallet of brutal and impactful rock music.

The album’s first single “Top Notch” keeps its word in delivering just that and already it’s clear that the album’s direction is drastically different from the complicated and sprawling themes of 2011’s Simple Math. In title alone Cope already indicates the themes that are to be explored with Hull stating that the many ways one copes with good and bad things can bring out a range of emotions. Couple this with the promise of a straight forward rock style this album should be a great way to launch a busy month of new music. - Jason Stives

Punk Goes 90s Vol. II
When it comes to Punk Goes… compilations, Fearless Records doesn’t seem to know when to give up. It started with Punk Goes Metal in 2000 and over the years has expanded to include themes such as Pop, Classic Rock, various decades, and more. Not that each of the different editions has been equally worthy of note. In more recent years the Punk Goes institution has gone noticeably downhill, especially the Pop versions.

But last year’s Punk Goes Christmas was a pleasant surprise, and so far it seems like Punk Goes 90s Volume 2 might be as well. Its artist lineup includes notable names like Memphis May Fire, Mayday Parade, Yellowcard, and Ice Nine Kills, and the track list recalls the very best of the days that so many seem to remember with such fondness. 

As for me, I was born in 1992, making me old enough to remember the majority of the 90s but still too young to have fully appreciated any of its glory. And I see Punk Goes 90s Volume 2 as an opportunity to educate myself on the finer points of a scene I missed out on. - Becky Kovach

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POZ Discussion: Artists To Watch In 2014

by Zack Zarrillo - Jan 13, 2014

We’re all in check with when our favorite and well-established artists are releasing new music each year, but some of the greatest surprises often come from bands we just simply didn’t see coming. Today PropertyOfZack is stoked to take the wraps off of our five Artists To Watch In 2014 Discussion. Feel free to reblog with artists that you think are going to take us by storm in 2014 and check out our list below!  

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POZ Xmas Review: Something Corporate - “Forget December”

by Zack Zarrillo - Dec 25, 2013

by Sydney Gore, edited by Erik van Rheenen

"Forget December, it won’t be better/ Than I remember it before/ and this month only, will be so lonely/ and not so holy anymore." Tis the season to get moshy, fa la la la la la la la la! "Forget December" was featured on the "We Won’t Be Home For Christmas" album from 2010, along with blink 182 and New Found Glory. This track is so good that I didn’t even realize it was about Christmas, so for all the Grinches out there, this song was made especially for you.

POZ Xmas Review: Bright Eyes - “Blue Christmas”

by Zack Zarrillo - Dec 25, 2013

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by Sydney Gore, edited by Erik van Rheenen

Sometimes, the most wonderful time of the year can actually be the most depressing. If you experienced some heartbreak right before the holidays, the last thing you probably want to do is listen to cheerful Christmas tunes. After a long day of faking smiles around the whole family, sneak into your room and put Bright Eyes’ A Christmas Album on; I guarantee that it’ll make you feel slightly better. Wallow into the New Year and have a very merry BLUE Christmas!

POZ Xmas Review: Sufjan Stevens - “Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing”

by Zack Zarrillo - Dec 25, 2013

by Sydney Gore, edited by Erik van Rheenen

Hipster Holidaze would not be complete without Sufjan Stevens! The Songs For Christmas album contains five EPs worth of Christmas carols, so listeners have quite a selection to choose from. “Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing” always fills me with some holiday splendor in a subtle way with its calm, cool and collected demeanor. At a time where everything seems so artificial and consumerist, Sufjan Stevens is organic.

POZ Xmas Review: Jimmy Eat World - “Last Christmas”

by Zack Zarrillo - Dec 25, 2013

by Sydney Gore, edited by Erik van Rheenen

"The O.C. Mix 3 Have A Very Merry Chrismukkah" is essential to anyone and everyone’s holiday playlist. While every track gets me in the Christmas spirit, this song is my favorite on the album. It’s times like these that I wish I had given my heart to Seth Cohen because I know that he would have cherished it for all of eternity…sorry about that. "Last Christmas" always makes me feel a twang of nostalgia, but in all honesty, if this tune doesn’t make you wish you were under the mistletoe with Seth Cohen, I can’t help you.

POZ Staff 10Of’13: Sydney Gore, Connor Sheehan

by Zack Zarrillo - Dec 23, 2013

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We’ve been blasting our band and label 10Of’13 lists over the past week, and PropertyOfZack is now happy continue rolling on with staff lists as well for our year end feature. Up next are two lists from Managing Editor Sydney Gore and POZ lifer Connor Sheehan. Check out both lists below and check back each day for more!

Related Stories:
POZ 10Of’13: Staff Albums Of The Year 
POZ Discussion: Best Surprise Releases Of Second Half Of 2013  

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POZ Discussion: Memorial Service - Bands Who Broke Up In 2013

by Zack Zarrillo - Dec 10, 2013

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2013 was a year filled with great music, but also one filled with an unfortunate amount of breakups. PropertyOfZack team members wanted to honor many of the fallen bands we love with a new Discussion called Memorial Service - Bands Who Broke Up In 2013. Check out our fallen favorites below and feel free to reblog with some of your most missed  bands as well!

Related Stories:
Friday Discussion: Bands Who Broke Up Too Soon 

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POZ Showcase: New Empire

by Zack Zarrillo - Nov 24, 2013

New Empire is an Australian alternative rock pop band. Their sophomore LP “Symmetry” was released in 2011, and received much praise from MTV Buzzworthy, To Write Love On Her Arms, and AOL. After such positive reviews, New Empire was asked to join the 2011 Vans Warped Tour for the whole summer. “Say It Like You Mean It,” the first single off their upcoming LP “In A Breath,” evokes elements found in old-school rock and roll such with the use of synthesizers, gritty guitar riffs, and a catchy chorus to sing along to.

Social SitesFacebookTwitterMyspaceSoundcloud

Please list all of your band members and their roles in the band.
Jeremy Fowler - Vocals/Guitar
Kyle Lane - Guitar/B.Vox
Nate Cairns - Bass/B.Vox
Kale Kneale - Drums/B.Vox

What’s your hometown?
We’re all based from Cronulla.

How did the band come together? How long has it been?
We’ve been a band for about 7 years now and the time has just flown by. Myself and Kale met in early primary school and have been friends since kids. Kyle came on board as a guitar tech 6 years ago and since moved into the band on guitar. Nate is our new bass player as of this year but we’ve been friends from the Cronulla beach area for many years. 

How have you grown since you started?
We’ve definitely come-of-age, like most bands do as time goes on. Starting out as more of a pop-punk band, we’ve now progressed into an indie-rock/alternative band, and are trying to explore more complex styles of melodies and lyrical writing.

What sets you apart from other bands?
We have a lot of big, anthemic songs that tend to resonate a lot with our listeners, and so when our fans come to see us play live, we love to give them that full experience that they hear on our records. 

What’s the best part about being in your band?
Touring is always fun, being on the road and travelling with some of your best mates. Can’t really complain about that.

More times than not, influences tend to bleed through. What bands are currently inspiring the music that you’re making?
We’ve definitely taken a lot of influence from artists like M83, Coldplay, One Republic, but even some of the older artists like ToTo and Fleetwood Mac definitely have an impact on our music.

What would you say the band has already accomplished and what do you have your eyes set on next?
We’ve toured Australia quite extensively, and have even had a song as the main theme song for the TV Channel 7 broadcast of the London Olympics, which was surreal! But we’re definitely going to focus on touring internationally and broaden our listener and fan base.

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POZ Review: Sleigh Bells - Bitter Rivals

by Zack Zarrillo - Nov 6, 2013

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by Sydney Gore, edited by Erik van Rheenen

Sleigh Bells’ third album “Bitter Rivals” attempts to pick up where “Reign of Terror” left off, and Alexis Krauss and Derek Miller should be applauded for their efforts. 

Based on the opening single “Bitter Rivals” alone, it’s obvious that there is far more instrumentation utilized on this record. Yet, “Sugarcane” tastes like something we’ve all had before— it literally sounds like a hyper, fast-forwarded re-write of “Born To Lose.” Next, there’s “Minnie,” which is jam packed with a whole lot of noise, but not much to say behind it. 

Warning: This album is all about being loud. “Sing Like A Wire” mentions static, and to be honest, that’s what most of the track sounds like. It’s dominated by synthesizers that loop around Krauss’ high-pitched oh oh ohs. 

Before anyone bangs their head out of frustration, “Bitter Rivals” twists and shouts (in a good way) on the second half of the album, completely turning the vibe around and redeeming the qualities that Sleigh Bells has always been praised for. 

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POZ Showcase: It’s Only a Story

by Zack Zarrillo - Nov 3, 2013

It’s Only a Story is an alternative/pop-punk band based in Orange County, CA. Active since 2011, the band markets their handcrafted music as a DIY (Do It Yourself) experience. In additional to their musical endeavors, the members of It’s Only a Story are also passionate about art, film, photography and web design.

Social Sites: FacebookTwitterInstagramTumblrYoutube

Please list all of your band members and their roles in the band.
-Will Gabriel (Vocals)
-Chris Hernandez (Vocals/Guitar)
-Shane Strachan (Guitar/Vocals)
-Kevin Moreno (Lead Guitar)
-Michael Shrewsbury (Bass)
-Vini Severino (Drums)
 
What’s your hometown (or what are your hometowns)?
The majority of us grew up in Orange County, CA. Some of us live in LA now, but as group everything takes place in our Bat Cave in OC.

How did the band come together? How long has it been?
Will started a solo acoustic project in late 2010. As the project progressed, it slowly started developing into a group, and by January it was a full-fledged band.

How have you grown since you started?
When the band first started we were just writing music, and releasing videos for the fun of it. But after seeing the seemingly random success of the “Bill & the Princess” music video, we realized that we had tapped into something that people wanted to hear more of. So we started writing a full-length record and released it back in May of this year. The response has been incredible, and we couldn’t be happier with what we’ve accomplished since then.

What sets you apart from other bands?
We’ve always prided ourselves on being a 100 percent DIY band. We have a creative hand in everything we put out. We shoot and edit our own music videos, our web videos, we record our own albums, we do most of our own graphic design, and in some cases we even take our own promotional photography. It’s pretty nuts. We all have a variety of talents and interests, and being in a band in this era allows you to be artistic in every aspect of your identity. 

What’s the best part about being in your band?
This band is funny because we aren’t all life long friends or anything, just a handful of guys that happened to come together and connect over a couple of stories. And in doing that, we’ve become really close friends. These songs are all based on real life, so we feel very passionate about the music we make. 

More times than not, influences tend to bleed through. What bands are currently inspiring the music that you’re making?
You can’t help but be influenced by the bands you love, so we just run with it and always set out to write the songs we want to hear. We are very influenced by bands we listened to when we were younger like Say Anything, Frank Turner, Fall Out Boy, New Found Glory, The Violent Femmes, and Taking Back Sunday. But we are also probably equally influenced by JJ Abrams, Breaking Bad, and The X-Men. 

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POZ Review: Moving Mountains - Moving Mountains

by Zack Zarrillo - Oct 24, 2013

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by Sydney Gore, edited by Erik van Rheenen

Moving Mountain’s self-titled album is a wonderful compilation of 11 songs that calmly awaken our inner starry-eyed dreamers. A follow-up to 2011’s “Waves,” the immediate forecast I received from this record was dark and brooding. Opening track “Swing Set” eases the listener in with Greg Dunn’s breathy vocals and subdued instrumentation. “Burn Pile” and “Hands” build off this momentum, full of crashing harmonies, chorus bells and more.  

Moving Mountains has the ability to mute the background noise without having the vocals overpower the songs entirely. The dynamics are intense, especially on “Personal” as the guitars and drums almost face off. The overall sound comes off as monotone, but something about it is soothing. 

"Eastern Leaves" is the standout track, fusing beautiful piano chords with chimes behind a pulsing drum beat and acoustic guitars. Additionally, this song reveals Dunn at his most vulnerable as he sings, "Well I hope that you know that I can’t feel a thing/ From this high that I’ve got but everything is burning up/ inside my heart."

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POZ Showcase: Cliffhanger

by Zack Zarrillo - Oct 20, 2013

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Mixing the old with the new, Cliffhanger aims to revive Chicago’s pop punk scene with their western suburban angst. This year, the band ranked no. 7 on Pop Punk World’s Top 20 Unsigned Bands. Cliffhanger’s debut EP Just Ignite was released last May and is available on iTunes.

Social Media: FacebookTwitterTumblrBandcamp

Please list all of your band members and their roles in the band.
Jordan Benker – Lead Guitar
Mike Centracco – Rhythm Guitar
Mike Licari – Drums
Trevor Utz – Bass/Vocals

What’s your hometown (or what are your hometowns)?
Chicago’s western suburbs (Berwyn, Riverside, Downers Grove, Rolling Meadows).

How did the band come together? How long has it been?
Mike C. met Mike L. met a long time ago while playing in local bands. After Mike C. graduated from college, he wanted to start up a new band that was different from what he used to play but combined his love for old and new pop punk. Mike C. then met Jordan at the Milwaukee Warped Tour where they discussed the possibility of starting a band. Mike C. reached out to Mike L. to inquire about playing drums from Cliffhanger and he agreed. Jordan introduced everyone to Trevor after they had met at Penny Road Pub while Jordan was playing a solo show. A few months after we all met, we decided to head into the studio to record, “Just Ignite.” We’ve been playing music for exactly a year, but started pushing our music when we released our debut EP in May.

How have you grown since you started?
We originally just wanted to throw our music out there since we recorded in February, but we waited until May to release it so we could have physical CDs created along with merch. It was a lot of patience, but it was nice knowing that everything was prepared before releasing it. We’ve grown by understanding patience and learning how to execute it correctly.

Our newer songs that have yet to be recorded are more lyrically relevant to today’s sound but still are structured between a mix of new and old pop punk.

What sets you apart from other bands?
We’re not a “theme” band. We discuss many topics in our songs that relate to us, so these songs are a way to get to know us. We don’t write songs about any theme in particular. We write about what we want to write about. 

We’re also fun people and pretty random. We like to have fun and have a great time on stage. 

What’s the best part about being in your band?
Everyone has the same goals of being professional, releasing quality material, sharing the desire to grow the band, and being serious in a fun way. For example, we have a song called, “They Used to Call Me ‘Anal Girl.’” It’s a serious song, but it has a fun song title. With everyone on the same page, playing together is that much better.

More times than not, influences tend to bleed through. What bands are currently inspiring the music that you’re making?
I Call Fives, Turnover, Count to Four, City Lights, Major League, Neck Deep, Handguns, and older bands like New Found Glory, Four Year Strong, Hit The Lights, blink-182, and All Time Low.

What would you say the band has already accomplished and what do you have your eyes set on next?
Like we mentioned previously, we’ve only been publically active since May, but we’ve received excellent reviews on our debut EP Just Ignite from several website.  We’ve been on PopPunkWorld, Aesthetic Heart Promotions, Pure Grain Audio, Defend The Scene, and we were the Independent Artist of the Month at Restless Press. We’ve also had songs played on Chicago Punk Rock Radio and Amanda On-Air (a pop punk station in Eugene, Oregon). We’ve shared the stage with These Hearts and Mychildren Mybride. Lastly, we created a lyric video for our song “City Skyline” from scratch, which can be seen here: http://goo.gl/rtX7v

We have our eyes set on booking more shows in the Chicagoland area, making another lyric video, saving up for a follow up EP, and trying to get our name out there.

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POZ Showcase: The Lives To Come

by Zack Zarrillo - Oct 13, 2013

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Based in Linthicum, MD, The Lives To Come is a six-piece post-hardcore band of best friends. Claiming to have a positive message, TLTC released their “Self-Titled” EP with five songs that prove their potential. The EP is available to purchase online for a “name your price” download.

Social Sites: Facebook, Twitter, Bandcamp

Please list all of your band members and their roles in the band.
Joshua Seleski and Daniel Thompson contributing vocals, Kyle Schaefer and Collin Dunn on guitar, Joseph Seleski on bass guitar and Ryan “Sadillac” Sadler on drums.

What’s your hometown (or what are your hometowns)?
Josh, Joe, Ryan, Kyle, and Collin all grew up in an area near Baltimore, Maryland called Linthicum.  Daniel grew up about two hours south of them in an area called Lexington Park, Maryland.

How did the band come together? How long has it been?
The Lives to Come has been a band for about two years now. Each and every one of us has been playing music in the areas that we have grown up in. The band originally started with Josh, Joe, Collin, ex-guitarist Casey, and Ryan. We’d play shows here and there at the local churches and whatnot, just having fun as teenagers.  The first thing that had changed us was when Casey decided to leave for the Navy.  We searched for an available guitarist, and gained the help of long time friend Kyle. He added an entirely different aspect to the music we were making, which also contributed to more of an attitude change within us.  As our music matured, we decided that we would open spot to incorporate singing into our music.  Kyle and Dan had been friends from past bands they had played shows with, and asked him to try out.  We all instantly clicked and Dan became a part of the group.  We recorded our debut EP Set Free and hit the ground running.

Why should people listen to your band?
We believe that people should listen to our band because we write honest music that comes from personal life experiences. We aren’t writing this music to get signed or be the next big thing, we are writing this music because it’s something that we believe in and have complete faith in. Our music can be understood on many different levels, and depending on the situation you’re in, that type of relation to music can help out more than you know.  We want to be able to help create that relationship between the people who are listening to the music and the music they are listening to.  And all of our music is free. People love free things.

How have you grown since you started?
When it comes down to growth, we’ve become better musicians. We’ve pushed ourselves by trying things we’ve never done before by taking risks and just putting ourselves out there to become better. We’ve learned to not limit ourselves to producing some trendy bull crap like we may or may not have done with previous bands. We set expectations for ourselves and do what we need to do to get those expectations accomplished whereas before, we didn’t take music as seriously as we do now.  What we produce is an extension of ourselves and that’s not something that should be taken lightly. So I guess when you look at it from our perspective, we’ve matured as musicians and as people.

What sets you apart from other bands?
Something that sets us apart from other bands would have to be the members that make this band.  We’re not the typical ridiculously good-looking male model band members. We don’t hide in the “green room” before our set and straighten our hair. We’re all some of the nerdiest, shyest people you could ever meet. At shows, we’re out conversing with whoever’s come out to support us and the other locals.  And, we’re the best of friends. It’s clear to see how close we all are with each other, the bond that we share between us especially during our live shows.

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POZ Showcase: Midwest

by Zack Zarrillo - Oct 8, 2013

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Not to be mixed up with the band Midwest from the Midwest, this Midwest is native to the continent down under known as Australia. The alternative rock/post-hardcore band is comprised of old friends Tim Corke, Lewis Wilson, Hobey Bennett and Miles Wilson. The mates describe their tastes as “a bi-polar spectrum of chaos and beauty,” something that is certainly captured in their self-titled EP.

For Fans Of: Balance & Composure, Title Fight, Manchester Orchestra, Explosions in The Sky, mewithoutYou

Social Sites: FacebookTwitterYouTubeBandcamp

Please list all of your band members and their roles in the band.
Timothy Corke – Vocals/Bass
Miles Wilson – Guitar
Lewis Wilson – Guitar
Hobey Bennett – Drums

What’s your hometown (or what are your hometowns)?
Brisbane, Australia

How did the band come together? How long has it been?
Tim, Hobey and myself were all friends through high school and played together sporadically and without any real intent. I think the distinct point at which Midwest formed was when Miles, my brother, joined and we put out our first release at the start of this year.      

How have you grown since you started?
I think our biggest growth has been in terms of song structure. Our initial demos sometimes lacked direction, but with our EP I think we’ve really tightened up in that area. We also work in a much more collaborative manner now, and jam on new ideas, and that’s when the best writing seems to happen for us. 

What sets you apart from other bands?
I don’t know whether it really sets us apart from all other bands, but we’re the type of people who tend not to have much to say on-stage. We prefer to let our music do the talking rather than orchestrating some alter ego. Certainly my experience of live music has always been that the performance itself is what captures someone’s attention, rather than what gets said between songs. I think that if we give our all on-stage, then there’s nothing we can really say that our music hasn’t said already.

What’s the best part about being in your band?
I think more than anything, it’s the opportunity of shared experiences with three of your best friends, working on something that you’re all equally passionate about. It could be music or it could be something else, but it’s the experiences along the way that we’ll remember.  

More times than not, influences tend to bleed through. What bands are currently inspiring the music that you’re making?
I think we’ve got certain releases rather than certain bands that inspire us. I think everyone can relate to having a favorite band putting our a release that you don’t ‘get’ no matter how much you want to, and we’ve come to realize that that’s actually okay. The artist doesn’t owe it to the listener to write something that fits their specific taste and nor does the listener owe it to the artist to keep listening if they’ve moved in a different direction. So we’ve come to be fans of certain albums rather than certain bands. Some of our favorites are Colour Revolt – Self Titled EP, Manchester Orchestra – Mean Everything to Nothing, and Oceana – Cleanhead EP. 

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Ernie Ball