Interview: Wages

Interview by Sofia WolfsonPhoto by Miranda Maynard

Wages is an LA-based pop/rock/experimental band who just released their debut album, titled Glace. Though this will be the foursome’s first official release, they are far from new to the industry, already placing songs in big TV shows like Gossip Girl and The Flash. Their distinct style mixes modern elements of today’s pop scene with 1960’s psychedelic vibes, most prominent in their first single off of the new record, “Gotta.” I chatted with Nick and James of Wages about their writing process, recording their debut album, playing live, and more.

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Essay: Jazz is Dead

By Jo Guelas

Jazz. A label associated with brass, dance and America. A music filled with so much life and force — but to the most people, it appears to be dying. Drowning amongst pop songs and dubstep, it seems that the fate of jazz will resemble the one of dusty library books that have never seen the time of day. But is Jazz truly dead? Or does it — to quote Frank Zappa — just smell funny?

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Review: Mitski

By Kylie Obermeier, Photos by Madeline Keyes-Levine

Mitski does not begin her set by addressing the audience. She lowers her gaze and sighs a series of angelic “oohs” over crashing cymbals that blend into one big whisper. The patron saint of all those who find adulthood just as angst-filled as teenage-hood (minus the romanticism) welcomes her devotees with what might come off as cool detachment. Or maybe she’s just working up the nerve to acknowledge the 700 or so people staring at her.

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Interview: Dave Rat

Interview by Kylie Obermeier

Drug rings, armed robbery, hookah stashing, cat burglar outfits and gopher snakes with broken necks–professional audiophile Dave Rat’s life is made for an action-packed biopic. Dave got his start recording bands like Black Flag and the Last on cassette as a high schooler during the LA punk scene of the late 70s and 80s. Since then, he has created speakers used at shows worldwide through his company, Rat Sound, and has mixed sound for countless bands. If you’ve gone to rawk shows, you’ve probably been to a show that used Rat speakers. Dave–who’s now based in Camarillo, CA–sat down with me to share incredible stories and wisdom on the morning of a work day ‘cause you can do that when you’re the boss. Fellow SB contributor Maddie Keyes-Levine accompanied me to provide snappy one-liners and remind her dad about the ridiculously high standards of today’s job market.

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The Best Acts of Governors Ball 2016

Words and photos by Megan Schaller

Three years ago, I looked to music festivals with a sense of mysticism and teenage yearning. At the time, I was still inexperienced enough to think that the idea of 30,000 tightly packed, sweaty armpits seemed strangely glamorous. While I’m no longer too naïve to let those delusions of grandeur fool me, there are some festivals that make three days of sleep deprivation, sunburn, and mile-long food lines worth it.

Yes, I suppose there is something alluring about moshing on a carpet of ripped-out grass stubs and crushed beer cans, or waiting an entire hour in 95-degree-heat to buy a $15 roll of lukewarm sushi. And yet, that’s not what keeps me coming back to Governor’s Ball Festival in New York City. At GovBall, it’s all about the music. This year’s lineup? The Strokes! The Killers! Kanye!

So here, without further ado, were the three favorite acts I saw throughout the two-day New York City festival. Had the third day of the festival not been cancelled for weather, all three of these acts would probably have been Kanye.

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Playlist: Pro Sleeping With Socks

Words and playlist by Jo Guelas

I’ve got a weird affinity for lo-fi, almost 90s, almost garage band music. The kind where you can prominently hear the guitar in low fidelity, and it’s like you can feel heaven calling you from above. I love it to shreds, but I’ve never really found a playlist where I can jam my socks off to it. Thus, I have created my brainchild: Pro Sleeping With Socks. It really it should be titled Pro Socks in general- they’re the best thing to happen to humankind.

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Video Premiere: Fight Back by Psychic Wave

By Psychic Wave and Sonic Blume

We’re stoked to premiere California-based psych rock band, Psychic Wave’s, BRAND NEW music video for “Fight Back” exclusively on Sonic Blume! Here’s Andrew on the inspiration behind the video…

The inspiration for our song, “Fight Back”, came from some punk bands I’d been listening to. I took horror elements and just ran with it, the rest came out of that seed. For the video, I mostly just knew I wanted to make fake blood and cover Tess, our bassist, in it. I wanted the video to be based around having someone else take control of you and your life. In the video, Tess is forced to drink some strange liquid and then goes into a blood-filled trance. At the end of the video the bottle containing the liquid is in her fridge and she decides to drink it, this time by her own free will. Viewers can take it however they want, and I don’t want to over-explain because I think the video can be interpreted many different ways. That’s how I wanted it!

Keep up with Psychic Wave on their website. ✿

On the Road: An Interview About Traveling for Music

By Lauren Tepfer

With festival season in full swing and the summer months coming to a peak, traveling for music has never been more present in our social, internet-driven lives. Lots of my friends have been spending the past few weeks together riding in buses, sleeping in cars and traveling in planes all for the sole purpose of music. Because I’m 17 and still in high school, I’ve spent the past few weeks living vicariously through them. I spoke to two of my friends, Erin and Amanda (I believe both gals truly embody the music lover persona), about their travels. Read on!

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The Strokes at Capitol Theatre

Words and photos by Megan Schaller

There’s a very special magic in the air at any Strokes show, rare as those shows may be nowadays. Capitol Theatre, however, was an electric universe of its own. The surprise – but not unexpected – concert kicked off a magnetic week of New York City Strokes mania – a spontaneous EP release, a week-long pop-up shop, and a bewitching Governor’s Ball headlining set. Weeks later, I’m still reeling.

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Review: Mudcrutch & The Shelters

By Sofia Wolfson

There is something uniquely comforting about seeing a musician live that you have grown up on. Just at the sound of an opening chord or a familiar chorus, memories and places come back. My dad always played Tom Petty on our I-5, Northern California bound road trips; I would tolerate the long rides only because I knew “Change of Heart” or “Surrender” was coming up next on the playlist.

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