Local alternative/hard rock trio The Din will play a headlining concert at LopLops Lounge on Saturday, May 20th! Heading to this popular Queen Street East venue for the first time since their NLFB Meltdown audition set earlier this month, this appears to be just a regular headlining set for Mike, Tammy, and Brandan, so prepare for a full set's worth of high energy alt-rock originals and select covers in a months' time! An opening band is to be announced, and we will let you know when they are confirmed (for reference sake, Mike Mikus is playing at LopLops on Friday the 19th.) The Din's show on May 20th is a 19+ event with a $5 cover charge and a door opening time of 9:00 PM. If you're ready to give in to The Din once again, then keep this show in mind for next month, and visit the official Facebook event page for current details!
Next up, the annual battle of the bands from local concert promoter J.D. Pearce is returning for year #3, but with big changes, so here's what we know so far! After two years as the multi-night VM Radio Battle of the Bands in March, the battle (presented by Tidal Records) has been contracted to a one night event to be held on Saturday, June 3rd, and with Village Media not credited on the Facebook event page, The Rad Zone have stepped in as the battle's new title sponsor. However, the battle will be held at The Canadian Nightclub once again, which is always a great choice! Plans call for a $1,000 cash prize for the winning band (as was the case in 2015), with professional recording time, industry professional feedback, and more on the line. Listed sponsors will include Twin City Sound, photographers RAD.imagery, and Sudbury's CSA International, the promoters behind this June's Rock the Border Music Fest (whose lineup will reportedly be announced tomorrow), among many others. Keep those components in mind come June 3rd!
Details regarding band registrations, individual prizes, audience admission, ticket sales, judges, and more are forthcoming, but for reference, look up the results and recaps from last year's battle for a potential idea of what to expect. A start time of 6:00 PM is in effect, and this will presumably be a 19+ event. Though things have been retooled since last March, the newly titled Rad Zone Battle of the Bands should be a great event with a lot of intrigue, especially given the relative lack of one-night judged battles in the Sault Ontario in recent years, NLFB Meltdown aside! Check the above links for all current details, and stay tuned as updates come in!
Finally for today, here's six assorted shorter news items from the last while and as usual for these short item groupings, these are in alphabetical order by band, company, or series name:
- Memphis hard rock quartet Devour the Day have been added as a second opening band for the Alter Bridge/In Flames concert at the Sault Michigan Kewadin Casino on May 16th, as per promoters Allstar Promotions' Facebook page on Sunday. This is a bit of a makeup date for Devour the Day, who Allstar had previously advertised to open for Shinedown locally in July 2013, but they were on a separate tour and were replaced in the Soo by fellow Memphis rockers Prosevere. It's great to see Devour the Day finally rock The Dreammaker's Theater, so get more details on this expanded concert above, and tickets are still available!
- As per their Facebook page on Sunday, Sault Ontario punk/metal veterans Jack Spades have enlisted former Winkstinger/Sativa Rose guitarist Anthony Orazietti (a.k.a. Tony AO) for their new lineup, restoring them to a quintet for the first time since Tiffany Stocco's departure last summer. It's great to see Anthony back in a local band, he showed skill in his short runs with recent groups, so hopefully he adds well with Jack Spades starting at the CKY concert! Stay tuned for the identity of their new drummer!
- After an 8 month hiatus from public updates, local indie/punk quintet Northwest resurfaced on Tuesday via some photos shared to their Facebook page taken at Mission Control Studios, one with producer Dustin Jones at the controls while bassist Mike Smykacz is playing. This heavily implies that they're recording new material, but is a second album in the works, or is something else afoot? Stay tuned for updates, but it's great to see Northwest back regardless!
- Wondering where local goregrind duo Rotopsy have been lately? Well, the guys revealed on their Facebook page in December that a new EP release named "A Worthless Collection of Aggressive Sounds" is in the works, with a full length release also planned for later in 2017. The planned cover art is even online, and in a surprise, it is safe for work, showcasing Rotopsy at The Oddfellows Hall with a red colour filter and a surprisingly happy crowd. Check out current details at the above links!
- SooToday's music webseries Tuned with Donna Hopper returned after a 2 month hiatus with a new episode yesterday, spotlighting the aforementioned NLFB Meltdown audition/battle at LopLops on April Fools Day, in which Donna was a judge! The video is solely about winning performer M.D. Dunn, who talks about his victory, preparation, and songwriting, and while no other bands are featured, Donna did ask Mark about his thoughts on the night's other bands. Entertaining episode, especially for fans of M.D. Dunn, so click here to give it a look, and good luck in Sudbury! I wonder if SooToday filmed the other bands that night?
- In a related note from our coverage of the former VM Radio Battle of the Bands, it appears that VM Radio proper (Village Media's local internet radio network) was quietly shut down in the past 5 months, as per the closure of it's website, and we have removed their rock station VM Rocks from our links. A reason for it's ultimate demise wasn't given, but VM Radio hadn't been actively promoted for reasons other than battle sponsorship in many months. With the lack of Canadian-produced FM radio in this market, VM Radio seemed to fill a void upon launching in late 2014, but hopefully the concept resurfaces in some form down the road!
That's all for today, but stay tuned for last month's poll results and our next poll tomorrow! Thanks everyone!