How Paul McCartney Keeps The Beatles Legacy Alive

Ever since February 7, 1964, The Beatles have been all the music world could ever talk about.

Since the infamous Beatles split in 1970, the band has grown larger and larger, and yet they’ve managed to keep themselves not only relevant, but timeless in the eyes of younger generations. Even today, with the recent release of Paul McCartney’s new album, Egypt Stationthe British Invasion continues.

The new album has reached Number 1 on the charts, McCartney’s first number one in 36 years. McCartney’s album is paired with the Freshen Up World Tour, which has stops throughout the U.S. Despite the release of Egypt Station, the former Beatle is known for performing songs from both The Beatles and Wings on this tour, forcing listeners to reminisce about these wonder years.

On the new album you can find his two latest singles “Fuh You,” an upbeat pop tune that sounds nothing like any of McCartney’s previous music, and “Come On To Me,” a song filled with McCartney shouts which harkens back to the nostalgia from The Beatles bowl cut beginnings. In addition to the new album, McCartney has released a Spotify Singles album Under the Staircase, complete with newly recorded songs from Abbey Road Studios. The Spotify record includes tracks like, “Love Me Do“, “We Can Work It Out“, “Nineteen Hundred and Eighty Five” “My Valentine” and more, extending fans fresh takes on Beatles, Wings and solo album hits.

In addition to the upcoming tour McCartney has made stops on both The Late Late Show and The Tonight Show Staring Jimmy FallonOn The Late Late Show, McCartney took his swing with host James Corden in Carpool Karaoke, where he stopped at his childhood home in Liverpool and surprised   guests at a local tavern.

Watching McCartney play along with James Corden is something that can bring a smile to anyone’s face, even my dad, who has disapproved of my Beatles obsession since the 7th grade. Overall, it’s probably McCartney’s drive to continue making new music, despite conforming slightly with contemporary pop sounds, which draws the world back into the never ending obsession and fascination with Beatlemania. Even when I was younger, I was instilled a passion for The Beatles, my Papa’s favorite band, and since then I feel as though I have seen their fan base grow larger year after year. How is it possible for a band that ended in the seventies to continue with such a large music presence, one that former members John Lennon and George Harrison disapproved of so much after the breakup? You cannot go a day in your life without seeing something about The Beatles; merchandise at a store, headlines about John and Paul, music on the radio. The Beatles came to America unaware of the impact they would have on the music industry, and it’s remarkable to think that this could continue through the rest of music’s existence.

McCartney’s presence on talk shows and social media continues to lure younger audiences into learning what the Beatles were all about, while simultaneously giving them a taste of McCartney’s pure lyrical brilliance. Although the relationship between the band members was not always the greatest post-breakup, the legacy of the Beatles is one that will never die and with the success over McCartney’s new album, it is proven that Beatles fans and music lovers will listen to whatever the late Beatles releases.

Written by: Kelly Kerrigan

The Frights at the Observatory North Park

The Frights Sell Out The North Park Observatory to Sweaty Teens, Bringing True All Their Frightening Dreams.

San Diego’s own The Frights played a sold-out show at The Observatory North Park on August 24th, which served as the kickoff date for their fall tour featuring HUNNY and Hot Flash Heat Wave. This hometown show served as a record release party for The Frights’ third full-length album, Hypochondriac, and, unbeknownst to all, as a birthday party for lead vocalist Mikey Carnevale. And what a party it was.

Hypochondriac is The Frights’ first record released on Epitaph Records since signing with the established punk rock label earlier this year. For the most part, the tracks feel softer and more personal than those on The Frights (2013) or You Are Going To Hate This (2016). “Goodbyes” and “Alone” are acoustic and full of raw emotion. Conversely, “Crutch” stands out as pure pop-punk, even bordering on emo territory. Gone is the “dirty doo-wop” sound The Frights were first known for, now replaced with slower, sadder songs about heartbreak.

I started my evening at M-Theory Records for a surprise acoustic set prior to the Observatory show. The Frights played through a lot of their new songs from Hypochondriac (a sound well-suited for an acoustic record store show), as well as some older favorites, such as “Of Age” from You Are Going To Hate This. The show felt intimate and wholesome, standing in stark contrast to what I’d experience later on.

At 8:00 P.M., I embarked to the Observatory for the real show. Supporting The Frights were Orange County’s The Grinns and Los Angeles’s The Marias. Typically, opening bands play for an unenthusiastic or nonexistent audience. Thankfully, tonight was not one of those times.  Towards the end of The Marias’ set, the band announced that they’d never had crowd-surfers at one of their shows and invited us to change that. The crowd obliged, establishing the rowdy energy that would continue for the rest of the night.

Around 9:30 PM, The Frights took the stage. Numerous floor lamps and suitcases had been arranged between the instruments and equipment, creating a visual reminiscent of the album cover for Hypochondriac. The floor was tightly packed as the sold-out crowd moved in for the main attraction.

It had been a while since I’d been to a show like this – Southern California, all ages, that perfect blend of surf/garage/punk rock that you can’t help but move around to. In my usual concert-going locale (Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, eh?), all-ages shows are rare. Furthermore, the stereotype of Canadian politeness usually extends to concert-going and mosh pit etiquette. “Excuse me, sorry, may I bump into you a bit here, bud?” “Sorry, of course, give’r.” Perhaps that’s a slight exaggeration, but the crowds I’m typically in are either of the mid-twenties hipster or late-thirties dad-punk variety, and it’s never anything I can’t handle. Based on these experiences and the level of “punk” that I ascribe to The Frights (maybe a 4/10 – sorry, guys), I thought that at most I’d be doing some low-key jumping around and singing, with a mosh-pit or two thrown in for some of their faster songs.

I was immediately proven wrong, as three seconds into The Frights’ first song, “Kids” (from You Are Going To Hate This), and I was inadvertently screaming for the first time in years and grasping valiantly (and unsuccessfully) for whatever nearby seventeen year old’s limb I can find to avoid drowning. There was a fleeting moment where I felt myself being swallowed up by the crowd and I wondered “Is this it? Is this how it ends? Trampled to death by teenagers at the Observatory, a mere nine days after arriving in San Diego for my second study abroad semester?” A sense of calmness washed over me as I accepted my fate. Thankfully, I quickly remembered that I’m a grown adult as I found my footing, and forced myself to push around with the best of ’em.

For the rest of the night, the crowd didn’t relent in their rowdiness, which the band reciprocated by putting on a wild show. The setlist felt like an even distribution of songs from their discography, including older favorites like “Makeout Point” (from 2013’s Fur Sure EP) as well as the surf punk tunes from their self-titled debut record that The Frights are most known for. The songs just seemed to keep coming, extending the set for almost a full hour. By the end of the show, crowd and band had bonded in hoarse voices and sweat-soaked t-shirts.

After the requisite chanting of “one more song,” The Frights returned for their encore and played through the entirety of their debut EP, 2013’s Dead Beach. Additionally, two wacky waving inflatable arm flailing tubemen (staples at any Frights show) were revealed and erected, mirroring the crowd’s enthusiasm as the final crowd-surfers of the night sailed overhead. Sweaty and bruised, we all used the last of our energy for one last hurrah in the mosh pit. As the show ended, I had no other wish in the world than to do it all over again.

Written by: Andrea Renney

DaniLeigh and Teyana Taylor at the North Park Observatory

DaniLeigh and Teyana Taylor Release A Year’s Worth of Pent Up Sexual Energy Within Two Hours.

Traveling to San Diego as part of the Keep That Same Energy tour, DaniLeigh and Teyana Taylor’s performance at the North Park Observatory was an absolute visual phenomena. Despite drama surrounding the tour, fans needn’t have worried, as all the performers brought their A-game in delivering what was undoubtedly the sexiest performance the Observatory will see this year.

Bringing out an assortment of DJs and performers throughout the shows two and a half hour runtime, the show never let up once it began. Although the performers seemed more present than the crowd itself, each performer managed to distinguish themselves in their sets. While Jade Novah’s performance lacked the same visual flair given to DaniLeigh and Teyana Taylor, Novah’s performance was nevertheless great. Accompanied by a few musicians, Novah’s onstage romp filled the room with a mix of trap beats and live instruments. If nothing else, the rapper asserted her identity as an artist to soon be reckoned with.

Surprisingly, DaniLeigh’s performance was actually more defined by the dancing rather than the music. The 23 year old performer was clearly utilizing all her skills to put on the best performance possible; everything from the visuals to the musical elements was fantastic. Complete with a choreographed dance routine and support from a backing DJ alongside her own singing, DaniLeigh left no stone unturned in her quest for a perfect performance. Her skill as a performer is not to be understated, as songs such as “Lil Bebe” resonated with a youthful energy that only young musicians can create. And her choreography was something else — witnessing something that well rehearsed is a feat you rarely see in younger or newer artists.

As much as I could praise DaniLeigh, Teyana Taylor was the absolute sensation of the show. Honestly, her performance was so enthralling that the crowd must’ve been too entranced to remember how to move. And it’s probably due to the fact that visually, Teyana and her crew were absolutely stunning. With a variety of outfits which left little to the imagination, their style was something you’d glimpse out of the flashiest fashion magazine. Aided by the perfect unity in which they moved across the stage, every moment was breathtaking from start to finish. Even the improvised moments of the set managed to set jaws on the floor, as Teyana (literally) seduced a female audience member, vogued with possibly the most fabulous man alive, and sang to her child.

And that’s not even mentioning how the music was! Reinforced with multiple musicians, each were merely pawns in Teyana’s seduction of the audience. Songs such as “WTP” pulsed with same heart-pounding energy as the digital recording, whereas slower songs such as “Gonna Love Me” and “Issues/Hold On” maintained their melodic intimacy. Meanwhile “Rose in Harlem” closed the set with one of the best closers I’ve ever seen, as the previous performers gathered once more on stage amidst a flurry of lights, bodies, and noise in what was nearly an overwhelming experience.

If this is what future performances from these artists can look like, then people better keep them on their radar, if they’re not already there. They exhibited, for lack of better words, a true visual feast for the senses!

Post Elvis – “Apocalypse Kid” Album Review

Post Elvis’ sophomore album, “Apocalypse Kid,” comes solely from the mind of Thomas Torres, and artistically, he’s bounding ahead towards musical greatness. Despite the album’s more experimental sound, especially when compared to his debut, Torres has crafted a riveting and cohesive listening experience for anyone who dares enter his musical wasteland.

In Post Elvis’ self-titled debut, Torres stated that people live in “an era of endless references, a dead pop cultural graveyard left for us to inspect.” Moving onto this latest project, it’s easy to see how heavily Torres leans into this idea, as he samples the familiar and the obscure to create something fresh and interesting. While Torres does utilize his well of pop culture references within his lyrics, the musical sound and style of “Apocalypse Kid” embraces the experimental. Songs such as “Delaware” begin with screeching alarms which transitions into a hip-hop beat, yet this doesn’t feel at odds with the droning, noise-rock of, “Wasteland Man.” Similarly, the 16-bit inspired “Max Pills” drops listeners straight into something that sounds as though it was remixed off an arcade machine just before it turns into a frantic dance song.

Sonically, this album sounds fantastic. Audiophiles may revel in the fact that Torres composed, recorded, mixed, and mastered this album himself; an impressive feat which is heightened when one notices the flairs added to this project. Hearing samples of swords, countdown timers, disconnected phonelines, and (dare I guess?) lasers(!) integrated into the tracks demonstrates Torres’ advancing skills as a producer. Even from the opening track “Live by the Bomb, Die by the Bomb,” and the album’s subsequent interludes, Torres works his magic layering, warping, and finally distorting sample after sample of speeches and soundbites. And fortunately, he doesn’t stop there, as he delivers complex songs which build and deconstruct themselves naturally, without ever overstaying their welcome. Even on slower songs such as “Know Equals Love,” the introduction entrances the listener in a dream-like state, as Torres builds the song up from a rough-sounding, drum pattern, to this almost upbeat-sounding movement whose notes all trail off like a question mark on an incomplete sentence.

Overall, “Apocalypse Kid” is a phenomenal next step for Post Elvis. However, for all intents and purposes, it needs to be noted that this is a bleak album. Tracks include Torres’ wailing, drawn-out, almost broken sounding instrumental recordings — even the “dance” track I mentioned earlier, “Max Pills,” has a frantic, almost anxiety inducing nervous energy pulsing throughout. Lyrically, the themes throughout this album are equally heavy, with dissociation, loneliness, and pain being the paths Torres prefers to lead listeners down. Should however, one believe themselves capable of stomaching the subject matter, then one will find an absolute gem of an album.

If you want more Post Elvis, you can look at him here…
 
Or hear his music on bandcamp at https://postelvis.bandcamp.com/