Under the Gun Review Entertainment news for today's generation 2014-09-15T01:47:20Z http://www.underthegunreview.net/feed/atom/ WordPress James Shotwell <![CDATA[REVIEW: Motionless In White – ‘Reincarnate’]]> http://www.underthegunreview.net/?p=1130305 2014-09-15T01:47:20Z 2014-09-15T01:32:56Z Artist: Motionless In White
Album: Reincarnate
Label: Fearless
Genre: Hard Rock

Motionless In White have long proven their ability to produce hard-hitting music with messages that range from believing in yourself to fighting against the corrupt bullshit you see in the world around you. Along the way, the group has undergone a spectacular evolution that has taken them from screamo beginnings to a sound that now appeals to rock fans from all walks of life. These changes have caused fans to come and go over the years, but with their third studio album it seems Motionless In White may have …

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Artist: Motionless In White
Album: Reincarnate
Label: Fearless
Genre: Hard Rock

Motionless In White have long proven their ability to produce hard-hitting music with messages that range from believing in yourself to fighting against the corrupt bullshit you see in the world around you. Along the way, the group has undergone a spectacular evolution that has taken them from screamo beginnings to a sound that now appeals to rock fans from all walks of life. These changes have caused fans to come and go over the years, but with their third studio album it seems Motionless In White may have finally found a sound that will appeal to everyone.

I think there is an argument to be made for every one of Motionless In White’s album titles to be viewed as a tongue in cheek comment on the band’s own position in life, but that is certainly the case with Reincarnate. Blending the heavier influences of the band’s early work with the radio ready sound of Infamous, this new album combines everything fans love about Motionless In White into one pulse-pounding mix of no holds barred hard rock. It’s got the most pit inciting chugs the Warped Tour crowds yearns for, but also a healthy mix of riff driven material that will play to fans of arena rock bands like Godsmack or Five Finger Death Punch. Those names may make some longtime followers cringe, but if MIW want to continue developing they need to hone in on a sound that can sell on a massive scale and those aforementioned bands know how to do it better than anyone in the game today. Tracks like “Reincarnate,” “Contemptress,” and “Dark Passenger” could be huge if marketed well.

Fans of Motionless In White’s debut album will also find plenty to love on Reincarnate. It’s a far heavier record than Infamous, and even the catchiest tracks tend to have moments of absolutely rock brutality sprinkled in for added excitement. “Dead Passenger,” for example, feels like a straightforward rock song before it eventually begins to build into a chaotic whirlwind of vocals and crashing instrumentation. It’s a moment, like many on the album, that hits you without any warning whatsoever. Those are the moments that make this album truly special, and more than half a dozen spins into the record I still find myself being surprised.

If Infamous made you think Motionless In White spent a little too much time listening to Marilyn Manson, Reincarnate will prove that belief true. From the beginning of “Deathmarch” it’s clear the band is continuing to take cues from the king of shock rock, and as the record progresses their are hints of his riot inciting sound permeating throughout the band’s material. “Everybody Sells Cocaine” is the most blatant of the bunch, boasting a chorus that immediately brings to mind “The Fight Song” (and I mean that in the best possible way). Likewise, “Dead As Fuck” brings to mind Hellbilly Deluxe era Rob Zombie. It’s not enough to cause anyone to cry foul, but the influence is undeniable.

The one song everyone will be talking about off Reincarnate is almost certainly the demi-ballad known as “Wasp.” Clocking in at just over seven minutes in length, this one of a kind offering finds Motionless In White slowing things down for a moving and complex emotional journey through the softer side of the band’s musical abilities. It’s the kind of song you don’t know how to judge at first, but as it plays you begin to ease into its groove, syncing its pulsating rhythm with your own heartbeat. By the time it ends you’re floating amidst a pitch black sea of digital effects and piano accompaniment that could very well move some to tears. It’s powerful stuff, and it tells the listener that Motionless In White still have a lot more work to do before their time in the music spotlight is through.

For all the good Reincarnate has to offer, it’s still not a perfect release. The diversity of the album keeps things fresh throughout, but poor sequencing choices make for an uneven listening experience. It’s not up, down, and up again, but up for a while, then down suddenly, or vice versa. As a result, Reincarnate tends to work better when played in the order preferred by the listener than the way the tracks are presented on the album. There is a great collection of music to be found here, the order it’s presented in might not be the best way to consume it. Additionally, the latter half of the album struggles to find ways to keep the more rock-oriented side of the group’s sound from becoming redundant. It’s never outright bad, but there are moments near the end of Reincarnate that sound a little too much like the beginning of the record. In some cases that could be considered something created to serve as bookends for the record, but that does not appear to be the case with this release. It’s not an album intended to play like a fluid story from beginning to end, so there is no real reason to revisit ideas from one part of the record later on.

I still believe Motionless In White are capable of releasing a flawless rock album that will shock critics and fans alike, but until they reach a point in their career where that kind of material is being created Reincarnate is the next best thing. It’s a driving and infectious release that finds Motionless In White growing more than ever before while relying heavily on the influences that helped get them started. Fans of both previous records will find something to love about this album, and they may even learn to appreciate the back catalog in new ways as well. It’s clear everything Motionless In White have been through in life up to this point went into this release, and I for one am excited to see what they do next.

Score: 7.5/10

Review written by: James Shotwell

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James Shotwell <![CDATA[MOVIE REVIEW: ‘No Good Deed’ Is No Good At All]]> http://www.underthegunreview.net/?p=1130297 2014-09-15T01:32:17Z 2014-09-15T00:16:45Z Film: No Good Deed
Starring: Idris Elba, Taraji P. Henson
Directed by: Sam Miller
Genre: Thriller

There is a difference between adding a twist to a film and omitting information from the first half of your story in order to make the second half more compelling. No Good Deed falls victim for confusing the latter for the real thing, and that is only the start of its many troubles.

Colin Evans (Idris Elba) is an unstable serial killer with a mysterious criminal history that is explained at length during the opening credits of No Good Deed. He’s suspected of …

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Film: No Good Deed
Starring: Idris Elba, Taraji P. Henson
Directed by: Sam Miller
Genre: Thriller

There is a difference between adding a twist to a film and omitting information from the first half of your story in order to make the second half more compelling. No Good Deed falls victim for confusing the latter for the real thing, and that is only the start of its many troubles.

Colin Evans (Idris Elba) is an unstable serial killer with a mysterious criminal history that is explained at length during the opening credits of No Good Deed. He’s suspected of far more crimes than police have been able to prove, and as a result he’s able to appear before a parole board less than a decade after his initial conviction. His speech is good, even great at times, but the board does not trust Evans enough to set him free. Frustrated, not to mention being generally maniacal, Evans quickly plans and executes an escape before being returned to prison.

It takes less than fifteen minutes for everything mentioned above to take place, which is unfortunate because they also happen to be the only moments in No Good Deed that offer any sense of tension whatsoever. Once free, Evans goes to see a former lover only to soon realize that she has moved on. The news that he is indeed as alone as he always feared while locked away shatters whatever sense of humanity is left in Evans, and the women he encounters from this point forward must suffer the consequences. This includes deception, abuse, and just enough shirtless moments to cut together a sensual sizzle reel to better engage the female demographic.

Home invasion films are nothing knew, especially those dealing with someone entering a home under false pretenses, but No Good Deed makes the unique decision to offer no original ideas or twists whatsoever during its 84-minute runtime. We know Evans is bad from the start, and the way he treats the characters he encounters prior to entering the home at the center of the story tells us everything we need to know about how he treats others. More importantly, we understand that Terri, the woman who inhabits the home Evans enters, hasn’t the slightest clue there is a killer on the loose. Director Sam Miller treats this information as the stuff that creates tension, failing to recognize that in order to have suspense there needs to be a sense of mystery in the air. The only mystery is why Evans chooses the house Terri lives in, but the audience is also never given a reason to care about his selection until it’s used to create an unnecessary twist late in the third act. That’s not smart writing, it’s sloppy.

The only reason anyone should make time for No Good Deed is that it provides one more opportunity for American audiences to witness the profound talent of Idris Elba. That said, he and every other good thing this film has going for it are wasted in an half-assed attempt to deliver what feels like the most generic home invasion film of all time. It’s bland, lifeless, and altogether forgettable. Worse than all of that however, is the fact the film is also not at all fun. Without any real reason to care about the characters there is really no reason to care about whether they live or die. They simply exist, for a while at least, and then the credits roll and you’re left feeling like you just paid someone $13 to steal an hour and a half of your life.

With the month of October right around the corner it may be tempting to get a head start on the scary movie season by purchasing a ticket for No Good Deed, but doing so would be the first step towards having the worst Halloween of your life. Avoid No Good Deed at all cost. Don’t even watch it when it arrives on Netflix. You deserve better, just like the cast and production staff deserve to have their names attached to something that offers something akin to entertainment. This is mean for the sake of being mean, and if you pay to see it there is 99.98% chance you will walk away feeling cheated.

GRADE: D-

Review written by James Shotwell

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James Shotwell <![CDATA[Florida Georgia Line Sing About Getting Stoned On “Sun Daze”]]> http://www.underthegunreview.net/?p=1130272 2014-09-14T22:47:34Z 2014-09-14T21:07:49Z Florida Georgia Line are less than a month away from the release of their Sophomore album, Anything Goes, and up to this point only one track off the highly-anticipated release has surfaced online. A second, the title track, was teased at the beginning of September, but never revealed in full.

Florida Georgia Line continued their teasing ways this weekend by sharing a snippet of another new song titled “Sun Daze.” The track, which will be available as an instant download to anyone who pre-orders Anything Goes starting September 16, finds the band offering a tropical take on their laid-back …

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Florida Georgia Line are less than a month away from the release of their Sophomore album, Anything Goes, and up to this point only one track off the highly-anticipated release has surfaced online. A second, the title track, was teased at the beginning of September, but never revealed in full.

Florida Georgia Line continued their teasing ways this weekend by sharing a snippet of another new song titled “Sun Daze.” The track, which will be available as an instant download to anyone who pre-orders Anything Goes starting September 16, finds the band offering a tropical take on their laid-back country pop style. They also sing about getting stoned, which is something that may shock and upset certain fans, but it’s not exactly shocking to learn that the two country stars who partnered with Nelly in 2013 also like to get high in their free time. You can stream the snippet below:

Florida Georgia Line also revealed in the last week that they have completed a new music video. We don’t know when those visuals will be released, but you can rest assured we will post them as soon as the materials become available. For now, follow UTG on Twitter to ensure you never miss another FGL headline.

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James Shotwell <![CDATA[Free MP3: Imagine Dragons – “It’s Time” (Matoma Remix)]]> http://www.underthegunreview.net/?p=1130267 2014-09-14T22:46:12Z 2014-09-14T19:45:19Z Today was the first day since early April that I stepped outside my apartment and immediately turned back because I realized the sunshine was not enough to keep my bones warm. There was a cold in the air that could only mean one thing: Fall is almost here. That may be a scary thought for you, and if so I cannot blame you in the slightest, but thanks to the brilliant Matoma we can all escape the changing of the leaves – if only for a few minutes – with his new tropical remix of Imagine Dragons‘ infectious single …

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Today was the first day since early April that I stepped outside my apartment and immediately turned back because I realized the sunshine was not enough to keep my bones warm. There was a cold in the air that could only mean one thing: Fall is almost here. That may be a scary thought for you, and if so I cannot blame you in the slightest, but thanks to the brilliant Matoma we can all escape the changing of the leaves – if only for a few minutes – with his new tropical remix of Imagine Dragons‘ infectious single “It’s Time.”

I don’t know if anyone can truly define what makes any one remix better than another, but for me the thing that matters most is the way a remix makes me feel in comparison to the original song. There was always an inherent sense of fun to “It’s Time,” but with Matoma’s new remix listeners are able to appreciate the positivity of Imagine Dragons in a way the original cut could never allow. It’s light and breezy, yet still packing an emotional punch strong enough to inspire life changes (once you manage to stop dancing). You can stream and download the song, for free, below:

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James Shotwell <![CDATA[Kanye West Pisses Off The Internet After Asking Wheelchair-Bound Concertgoer To “Stand Up!”]]> http://www.underthegunreview.net/?p=1130260 2014-09-14T22:37:18Z 2014-09-14T19:18:10Z Oh, Kanye. Will you ever learn? I sure hope not.

Yeezus creator Kanye West is in hot water with critics and members of the gossip-laden press alike this weekend after video surfaced of the “Black Skinhead” rapper stopping a performance to demand that a wheelchair-bound concertgoer, quote “Stand up!” No, I am not making this up.

The nonsense took place at Qantas Credit Union Arena in Sydney, Australia on Friday night. In the middle of his show, West reportedly announced, “I can’t do this song. I can’t do this show until everybody stand up… Unless you got …

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Oh, Kanye. Will you ever learn? I sure hope not.

Yeezus creator Kanye West is in hot water with critics and members of the gossip-laden press alike this weekend after video surfaced of the “Black Skinhead” rapper stopping a performance to demand that a wheelchair-bound concertgoer, quote “Stand up!” No, I am not making this up.

The nonsense took place at Qantas Credit Union Arena in Sydney, Australia on Friday night. In the middle of his show, West reportedly announced, “I can’t do this song. I can’t do this show until everybody stand up… Unless you got a handicap pass and you get special parking and shit. Im’ma see you if you ain’t standing up, believe me, I’m very good at that.” The vast majority of the crowd got on their feet and started to dance, but not long after the next track started Kanye noticed two people who were not moving and brought his entire performance to a grinding halt. This is when everything went to shit.

Not taking the split-second needed to properly investigate why the two concertgoers were not moving, Kanye instead spotted the pair and immediately told the crowd he would not be able to continue his show until they stood up. What Kanye did not realize, at least not at first, was the fact that one of the two people was seated in a wheelchair. The other, who proceeded to raise a prosthetic limb, thereby proving that she did in fact “get special parking and shit,” to which West replied, “Okay, you fine.”

If things would have ended here, there would probably be no story. The thing is, West never noticed that the second individual was seated in a wheelchair. So after the fan with a prosthetic was given a pass, the rapper honed in on the person he believed to be lazy while fans waited for “Good Life” to begin. “This is the longest I’ve had to wait to do a song,” West told the crowd. “It’s unbelievable.” Fans began trying to tell Kanye what was happening, but before anyone could get through to him West sent his own bodyguard into the crowd to see what the deal was with this fan who seemed to be defying Yeezus for no reason at all. The guard confirmed the presence of a chair, to which West replied “He is in a wheelchair? It’s fine!” And the show continued on.

The whole incident was caught on video, and as you can probably guess there are several disability-related groups and organizations who are furious about West’s so-called insensitive comments. Few are willing to admit the rapper may have been unable to see the chair and prosthetic prior to launching his rant, but if they did they probably wouldn’t receive as many hits as this random bit of news has brought in the last twenty-four hours. View a video of the incident below, then comment and let us know if you think Kanye was in the wrong.

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James Shotwell <![CDATA[Childish Gambino Streams “Sober” From ‘STN MTN/KAUAI’]]> http://www.underthegunreview.net/?p=1130257 2014-09-14T22:45:09Z 2014-09-14T18:32:40Z Childish Gambino informed us at the beginning of September that he would be releasing a new mixtape in the near future. We still do not know when that record will arrive, but this afternoon Gambino shared a track off the album that has radio hit written all over it.

We can go back and forth over whether or not Because The Internet is stronger than Childish Gambino’s debut, but I think everyone can agree that Internet offered the rapper, whose real name is Donald Glover, an opportunity to expand his sonic horizons in ways other urban artists would never …

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Childish Gambino informed us at the beginning of September that he would be releasing a new mixtape in the near future. We still do not know when that record will arrive, but this afternoon Gambino shared a track off the album that has radio hit written all over it.

We can go back and forth over whether or not Because The Internet is stronger than Childish Gambino’s debut, but I think everyone can agree that Internet offered the rapper, whose real name is Donald Glover, an opportunity to expand his sonic horizons in ways other urban artists would never even think to attempt. “Sober,” the STN MTN/KAUAI cut released today, continues this trend by offering fans what is essentially a straightforward ballad about how the right person can make you feel inebriated when you know in your heart that you’re completely sober. It’s a track for those who make you lovestoned, if you will. Check it out:

Again, we have no idea when STN MTN/KAUAI will be released. Our guess is sometime in October, but you never know with Gambino. For now, follow UTG on Twitter for updates and comment below to let us know your thoughts on “Sober.”

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James Shotwell <![CDATA[The Weekend Classic Are About To Become Your New Favorite Band]]> http://www.underthegunreview.net/?p=1130242 2014-09-14T22:42:00Z 2014-09-14T18:08:21Z I’ve always found that the best listening experience anyone can hope to stumble across is an instance where material that you never expected to impress you ends up knocking you on your ass. The track plays, your jaw slowly comes unhinged, and by the time it ends you’re too busy eating your own words to try and defend lack of enthusiasm up front. It’s rare, which is all the more reason to tell everyone you know whenever artists are able to have that kind of affect on your life.

Hailing from Indiana with a sound that blends together the best …

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I’ve always found that the best listening experience anyone can hope to stumble across is an instance where material that you never expected to impress you ends up knocking you on your ass. The track plays, your jaw slowly comes unhinged, and by the time it ends you’re too busy eating your own words to try and defend lack of enthusiasm up front. It’s rare, which is all the more reason to tell everyone you know whenever artists are able to have that kind of affect on your life.

Hailing from Indiana with a sound that blends together the best elements of pop punk with a sound with the kind of lyrical sensitivity that usually comes after years spent traveling the country in the back of rusty vans, The Weekend Classic have all the makings of alternative music’s next big thing. Their latest two-song release, which is available now on Bandcamp, features a pair of powerhouse singles that convey more raw emotion than the vast majority of full-lengths that have come across my desk this year. “Dread The Weather” plays like Hit The Lights if each member went through the worst breakup of their lives just after Invicta hit the streets. It’s catchy and loud, but riddled with a sense of sadness that is hard to shake. “Fireworks,” which is arguably the more melancholy of the two, begins like a whisper before blossoming into a wall of sound that feels aimed at filling arenas. The lyrics touch on seeing the end of a relationship before it occurs and the many thoughts that fill one’s head after the separation has taken place. When the refrain gives way to the flood of guitar and drums about halfway through, it’s good enough to make your spine tingle, especially with a great pair of headphones.

Many bands in this sub-genre of alternative and pop punk put the majority of their effort into crafting songs filled with observations from everyday life in order to be relatable to music fans. The Weekend Classic prove with this release that they realize it’s not all about the lyrics, though they are strong throughout, it’s about the way the vocals and music combine to create feels-inducing audio glory that pours through your listening device and straight into your soul. This is no doubt helped, at least in part, by the mixing work of Mike Hart and mastering help from Dangerkids’ Tyler Smyth, but without The Weekend Classic first possessing quality songwriting abilities the rest would not matter all that much. Every great band starts with great songs, and here The Weekend Classic have delivered a perfect pair of tracks to accompany the fast-approaching fall season. You can stream the songs below:

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Adrian Garza http://adriangarzajams.tumblr.com <![CDATA[‘No Good Deed’ Intruded into Theaters and Made $24.5 Million]]> http://www.underthegunreview.net/?p=1130250 2014-09-14T22:38:46Z 2014-09-14T17:36:37Z No Good Deed didn’t need a stacked budget or flashy effects to knock Guardians of the Galaxy from the top of the weekend charts. Which goes to show that sometimes, what the box office really needs to get revived is a good old-fashioned scare from a home invasion thriller.

The Screen Gems film made an estimated $24.5 million this weekend, which is a mighty feat considering its harsh 12% Rotten Tomatoes rating. Right behind it came Dolphin Tale 2, which sadly enough, didn’t measure up to the 2011 original’s $19.2 million debut pull, but only coming up with …

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No Good Deed didn’t need a stacked budget or flashy effects to knock Guardians of the Galaxy from the top of the weekend charts. Which goes to show that sometimes, what the box office really needs to get revived is a good old-fashioned scare from a home invasion thriller.

The Screen Gems film made an estimated $24.5 million this weekend, which is a mighty feat considering its harsh 12% Rotten Tomatoes rating. Right behind it came Dolphin Tale 2, which sadly enough, didn’t measure up to the 2011 original’s $19.2 million debut pull, but only coming up with $16.6 million. Lastly, Tom Hardy’s The Drop made a rather quiet debut of only $4.2 million, which in all actuality, is impressive for a film belonging to the Fox Searchlight roster. This can likely be attributed to the fact that this crime-drama features James Gandolfini’s final performance.

Follow the jump to get a look at this weekend’s full top ten chart.

  1. No Good Deed $24,500,000
  2. Dolphin Tale 2 $16,550,000
  3. Guardians of the Galaxy – $8,040,000
  4. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles – $4,800,000
  5. Let’s Be Cops $4,300,000
  6. The Drop $4,200,00
  7. If I Stay $4,050,000
  8. The November Man – $2,750,000
  9. The Giver $2,630,000
  10. The Hundred-Foot Journey $2,460,000
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Dana Reandelar http://twitter.com/danarndlr <![CDATA[Bowling For Soup’s ‘A Hangover You Don’t Deserve’ Turns Ten]]> http://www.underthegunreview.net/?p=1130216 2014-09-14T14:27:45Z 2014-09-14T13:30:05Z When I moved schools in ’09, there was absolutely nothing that tied me to the music I listened to and the music of the people who then started to surround me. I found myself in a drastically different environment and I longed for someone to talk about something I could relate to. I wanted to be able to talk about anything music-related to anyone who spoke the slightest bit of the alternative music scene’s language.

There I was, a junior in a new school, so far from where I grew up, surrounded by girls who only wanted to listen to …

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When I moved schools in ’09, there was absolutely nothing that tied me to the music I listened to and the music of the people who then started to surround me. I found myself in a drastically different environment and I longed for someone to talk about something I could relate to. I wanted to be able to talk about anything music-related to anyone who spoke the slightest bit of the alternative music scene’s language.

There I was, a junior in a new school, so far from where I grew up, surrounded by girls who only wanted to listen to Kid Cudi and Trey Songz on their iPods. You couldn’t imagine the excitement that consumed me when I heard a girl listening to A Hangover You Don’t Deserve’s opening track, “Almost,” down the hallway. Hearing a song off of Bowling For Soup‘s only record that made it into the Top 40 suddenly revitalized my supposedly music-deprived semester through who I found out later was Jessica from 6th period. To this day, I still bump into her at shows every now and then.

Flashback to five years prior to that encounter; 2004, a cover of SR-71’s “1985” came on the radio and I felt like a puppy discovering its tail for the first time. It was a cool moment because it fueled my desire to gain more insight into the pop punk scene I knew so very little about then. Admittedly, I didn’t know it was a cover until much later, but that really didn’t matter. I never bothered listening to the original anyway. I learned every word and I vividly recall getting a few other songs off AHYDD into my MP3 player as soon as I got one.

Having been nominated for a Grammy Award, A Hangover You Don’t Deserve was one of the few pop punk records from its time period that actually penetrated the general public’s music libraries. I have friends who have absolutely no idea what pop punk is, yet they sing “1985” with me word for word whenever it comes on. A lot of other songs on this record strike the same way, ten years later. To this day, “Trucker Hat” is still the cheesiest, most adorable song I know. I still recall wanting a cool trucker hat (or more accurately, a boy in a cool trucker hat who listened to good music) because of it. I still kind of do, actually.

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When I think of every band I ardently listen to now, I can’t help but notice that I gravitate towards those artists whose lyrics are relatively wordier and more challenging to regurgitate. There’s something really invigorating about words sliding out of your mouth effortlessly. If it weren’t for track number four, “Get Happy,” I don’t think I would have been able to grasp the lyrics to Paramore’s “Misery Business” as quickly as I did, or possess the ability to recite Sum 41’s “Underclass Hero” even in my sleep.

“Ohio (Come Back to Texas)” was one of the few songs I didn’t get into when I was going through this record’s appreciation cycle. It wasn’t until college when I’d encountered the song again for the first time in ages that I’d realized how much I enjoyed it. This, among other songs like “Down For The Count” and “Two-Seater” are ones I also don’t skip anymore.

I still thoroughly enjoy majority of the songs from A Hangover You Don’t Deserve. It’s one of the records I wouldn’t necessarily classify as a favorite, but still cling onto because of its significance. The lyrics, one of this record’s strongest and most appealing qualities, gave me a slightly less accurate, but nonetheless valid idea of what growing up would be like in terms of relationships. It made little old me expect the cutesy (“Shut Up And Smile”) things to inevitably turn into “Sad, Sad Situations” like dating an “A-Hole” or inevitably being someone’s “Next Ex-Girlfriend.” As it turns out, this wasn’t always the case; and although I may not have shared the same high school experiences as Jaret Reddick, one thing he mentioned should always resonate within us all: it’s that at the end of the day, “all we (will ever) need is an ice cream and a hug… and love… and beer.” Sounds about right.

Editorial written by Dana Reandelar
‘A Hangover You Don’t Deserve’ turns 10 today, September 14.

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Sam Cohen <![CDATA[MOVIE REVIEW: ‘God Help the Girl’ Is A Melancholy Music Drama About Emotional Issues]]> http://www.underthegunreview.net/?p=1130210 2014-09-13T21:12:00Z 2014-09-13T18:18:34Z Film: God Help the Girl
Starring: Emily Browning, Hannah Murray, Olly Alexander
Directed by: Stuart Murdoch

Using music to avoid and/or get over emotional problems in life has played an integral part in musical cinema in the past and present. Whether it was a loner with headphones on or a longhaired Slayer fan bouncing through the mosh pit, music has always been a vessel for character development. In God Help the Girl though, music is front and center, overtaking the slim plot with its sad but lively soundtrack destined to have your foot tapping.

God Help the Girl follows Eve …

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Film: God Help the Girl
Starring: Emily Browning, Hannah Murray, Olly Alexander
Directed by: Stuart Murdoch

Using music to avoid and/or get over emotional problems in life has played an integral part in musical cinema in the past and present. Whether it was a loner with headphones on or a longhaired Slayer fan bouncing through the mosh pit, music has always been a vessel for character development. In God Help the Girl though, music is front and center, overtaking the slim plot with its sad but lively soundtrack destined to have your foot tapping.

God Help the Girl follows Eve (Sucker Punch’s Emily Browning), a girl who listens to talk radio whilst trying to write the next pop tune that will skyrocket her out of the rut of a life she is in. After breaking out of the hospital in Scotland, where she was being treated for anorexia and malnourishment, she meets another aspiring musician in James (Penny Dreadful’sOlly Alexander). James is bewildered by Eve and agrees that she has the right stuff to make great music. James and Eve then meet Cassie (Game of Thrones’ Hannah Murray) who invigorates their dreams of musical success. The story follows this talented trio, as they must overcome a multitude of obstacles to get where they want to be.

Although the story is predictable, the music of the film lifts God Help the Girl to heights that wouldn’t have been achievable without it. The intro consists of focused shots on Eve as she sings into the camera when she breaks out of the hospital, walks on the street, and sits on the train. These lone moments with Eve could have easily been dull and lifeless but with the addition of songs much akin to the director/writer Stuart Murdoch’s own indie band, Belle and Sebastian, they work. Eve, James, and Cassie could be passed off as people living outside of the real world with lofty expectations for their work that has yet to be completed but, they’re different than that. What starts out as a study on the struggle for stardom turns into a hip-shaking rendition of being grateful for what someone has and not what they don’t have.

Emily Browning, an actress that has struggled to find a good film to be in (I’m looking at you Sucker Punch and Pompeii), seems to have finally found a role in which she can sink right into. She’s equal parts adorable and heartbreaking as Eve, the girl who aside from crippling emotional issues only has music in her life. Music helps her trot along without breaking down because of the shocking reality of her life. She has no family, she’s dangerously malnourished, has no friends, and will shack up with boys if they can get her music samples to those with power to make her famous. From the opening to closing shot, the viewer is sucked in by Browning’s beauty but is kept because of the brutal honesty behind her character’s hurt eyes.

Cassie and James aren’t their own characters as much as they are people who react to Eve, people who are deemed not as important. To James, music may be fantastic but he doesn’t want stardom, he wants to make a record he loves. The same goes for Cassie, who loves music but has no desire in being loved by an audience. It’s a damn shame that these two people who represent very interesting ends of the spectrum on the musical process are so reactive to Eve’s motivations. Yes, Eve may be the lead singer and songwriter but some more fleshing out of these two minor players could have taken God Help the Girl above most musical dramas released today.

Stuart Murdoch, in his writing and directing debut, doesn’t struggle to bring his vision of these 3 people in Scotland bringing music to life. The issue is that other than the opening tracking shots of Eve singing into the camera and another party sequence that looks dull (because it’s at some kind of retirement home) but then transforms into a 50s’-era sock hop, there isn’t much visual flair to set this apart from others. Less focused than the musical montages that Zach Braff brings to his films, Murdoch’s strengths lie in the moments where the characters sing in public places, sometimes to the comedic dismay of the people around them. It’s expressively fun to watch these free-flowing characters dump all of their fears and emotions into sung word. Unfortunately, beyond those honest things sung throughout the film, there isn’t much left for God Help the Girl to rise above to achieve cinematic stardom.

GRADE: C+

Review written by Sam Cohen (Follow him on Twitter)

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James Shotwell <![CDATA[Big Sean Signs With Roc Nation, Shares Four New Songs]]> http://www.underthegunreview.net/?p=1130207 2014-09-13T15:38:17Z 2014-09-13T15:38:17Z Big Sean has been making headlines in recent months because of his rumored relationship with Ariana Grande more than his music, but that all changed this week when Sean announced he had signed with Roc Nation. He now shares representation with the same people who handle the likes of Meek Mill, Shakira, and DJ Mustard. Sean, always the type to celebrate, then took to Twitter with a tease promising new music on Friday (September 12).

Last night, Sean made good on his promise to fans by sharing not one, but four brand new tracks. The songs feature …

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Big Sean has been making headlines in recent months because of his rumored relationship with Ariana Grande more than his music, but that all changed this week when Sean announced he had signed with Roc Nation. He now shares representation with the same people who handle the likes of Meek Mill, Shakira, and DJ Mustard. Sean, always the type to celebrate, then took to Twitter with a tease promising new music on Friday (September 12).

Last night, Sean made good on his promise to fans by sharing not one, but four brand new tracks. The songs feature production work from some of the biggest names in hip-hop, including one song with DJ Mustard and Kanye West working together. There’s also a track from Key Wane that sounds better than anything heard on Sean’s 2013 effort, Hall Of Fame. The rest I could take or leave, but fans of tracks that showcase Sean’s ego will probably enjoy the entire set. You can stream the songs below:

Sean has not revealed any plans to release additional new music, but the shared artwork across the tracks leads us to believe there may be a mixtape or album in the works. We will bring you more information on Sean’s plans as they become available. For now, comment below and let us know your thoughts on his latest material.

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Kyle Florence http://underthegunreview.net <![CDATA[Northlane Part Ways With Vocalist Adrian Fitipaldes]]> http://www.underthegunreview.net/?p=1130198 2014-09-13T14:51:24Z 2014-09-13T14:51:24Z Yesterday evening, Sydney, Australia’s Northlane announced that they have parted ways with their longtime vocalist Adrian Fitipaldes, who has been featured on all of the group’s releases to date. According to a post to the band’s official Facebook page, the outfit’s hectic schedule was too stressful towards the frontman’s physical and mental well-being. Read the full-statement after the break, and let us know how you feel in the comments section below.

As unfortunate as this news is, the remaining members of Northlane have decided to press on in search of a new vocalist, and are presently accepting online submissions to …

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Yesterday evening, Sydney, Australia’s Northlane announced that they have parted ways with their longtime vocalist Adrian Fitipaldes, who has been featured on all of the group’s releases to date. According to a post to the band’s official Facebook page, the outfit’s hectic schedule was too stressful towards the frontman’s physical and mental well-being. Read the full-statement after the break, and let us know how you feel in the comments section below.

As unfortunate as this news is, the remaining members of Northlane have decided to press on in search of a new vocalist, and are presently accepting online submissions to round out their lineup. If you think you’ve got what it takes, more details can additionally be found below.

The group is presently slated to re-release their latest full-length, Singularity, on October 28 via Rise Records. Pre-Orders are ongoing.

“It is with regret that we announce that Adrian Fitipaldes has decided to leave Northlane and will no longer be our vocalist moving forward. Adrian has been a part of Northlane since our inception, but has chosen not to continue on with the band. The four remaining members of Northlane will continue to move forward, and we are looking for a new vocalist. All of our booked dates will happen as planned (either with a fill-in vocalist, or someone new), and we are still working on a new album to be released next year. Additionally we are planning to release new music by the end of the year in the form of a single. We are searching for a new vocalist, and we will be accepting submissions for a replacement. More details are below on that.

Northlane is our passion and something we put every part of ourselves into. We love our fans, our music and our art more than anything, and we live for performing live and making music. Unfortunately, Adrian had found the wear and tear of Northlane and our schedule to be too stressful towards his health, both physically and mentally. What we do is not easy, it takes huge amounts of hard work and dedication, and we respect Adrian for doing what was right for him personally. However, for the rest of us, this is our lives, and our dream. We’ve achieved way too much so far to ever consider stopping now. As such, we will continue on with the same passion and dedication that we have put into our band since its inception.

We are looking for a vocalist who is willing to dedicate themselves to our band, and to put in the same amount of work we have all put in, to dedicate their lives towards their craft and this band. We are looking for someone to be part of Northlane, who has the talent and work ethic to front our band. We are able to work with a vocalist from anywhere in the world. We are looking for someone with a unique range in their voice that can handle both our back catalogue and our plans for the future, which may include pushing their voice beyond what has been done within our band before. Northlane has always been about progression and creativity, and we want someone to help us continue in that tradition. Everyone in our band is under 25, and our energy and youthful enthusiasm is something that is important for us, so we will be looking for someone within the same age group. Being in Northlane is an incredible journey – we travel the world playing shows to thousands of incredible fans each night – and we want someone who understands and appreciates the opportunities being in this band presents.

To submit for the audition process, you are required to lay down vocals over either “Quantum Flux” or “Dream Awake” taken from the instrumental deluxe edition of our last record “Singularity”. We would like if you included a video of yourself performing your vocals as well, just so we can reference you doing it. Please note that we aren’t looking for a carbon copy of what we have already done, we are looking for someone to show their creativity within the songs, so do what shows your voice off as best as possible. With the above included please email nlsubmissions@weareunified.com and remember to include your name, age and location as well as links to any other previous works that you’d like to show us.

We know this news might be upsetting, and it might be a shock but we want to thank you for sticking by us in this tough time. All of the amazing opportunities that being in band has granted us are because of all the love and support that you amazing people all around the world have shown us.

The future of Northlane is everything to the four of us, and we trust that we have fans who are willing to respect and understand where this announcement is coming from. We promise that we will find someone perfect to complete our band and that we will continue to create the best possible music and live performances we can, and we hope you can look forward to our future as much as we are.

As for Adrian, we also wish him the best in everything he has planned. He has been an important part of our journey, and we wouldn’t be here without him. We are extremely proud of the music we created with him, and that music will always be a part of us. We’ll post a statement from Adrian in the coming days so he can connect with Northlane fans through us one last time.

Thanks again for your understanding.

Jon, Josh, Alex and Nic”

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Matthew Leimkuehler http://underthegunreview.net <![CDATA[REVIEW: MINT – ‘Murder’ EP]]> http://www.underthegunreview.net/?p=1130016 2014-09-13T06:30:54Z 2014-09-13T14:30:01Z Artist: MINT
Album: Murder EP
Genre: Progressive Rock

MINT, Des Moines, Iowa’s finest progressive rock band, have released a overtly catchy and experimental record with their new Murder EP.

Providing a snapshot into where the band is headed, the three-song release contains three aurally diverse, yet still unmistakably MINT tracks. It’s like dipping your hand into the cookie jar and knowing you’re going to get a cookie, but coming out with three different, yet equally delicious treats. That’s how the band’s new record plays out upon first listen.

The record opens with the hip-shaking single, “Murder,” a sexual number …

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Artist: MINT
Album: Murder EP
Genre: Progressive Rock

MINT, Des Moines, Iowa’s finest progressive rock band, have released a overtly catchy and experimental record with their new Murder EP.

Providing a snapshot into where the band is headed, the three-song release contains three aurally diverse, yet still unmistakably MINT tracks. It’s like dipping your hand into the cookie jar and knowing you’re going to get a cookie, but coming out with three different, yet equally delicious treats. That’s how the band’s new record plays out upon first listen.

The record opens with the hip-shaking single, “Murder,” a sexual number with an aggressive rock ‘n’ roll progression throughout. “You can’t win a fight if there ain’t nothin’ to win,” singer Bradford Johnson bellows at the end of the track — a line that comes after four minutes of soft and swaying music fills your ears before the vocal and musical explosion that comes with the line.

The direction of the record changes with the second and most prolific number, “Heart Feels Heavy.” This song shows both the ultimate musical and lyrical potential of the three-piece band. The number has an awe-inspiring depth to it — going from aurally dark to light, mysterious to transparent. The chorus reflects modern pop rock greats the likes of fun., or Dr. Dog — except it’s musically more sound. There’s more going on in the track (just hear the perfect placement of the scale in the chorus) than a simple melody. It’s a number that digs deep, the type of track that you hear something new in with each spin. The band self-described as “Rock ‘n’ roll soul from the beating heart of the USA,” lives up to this moniker with “Heart Feels Heavy.”

The record then sends you into the premature closer (What can I say? Three songs just isn’t enough from this act). It’s an electronic-driven rock number worthy of potential dance remixes in the near future. The augmented instrumentation is diverse and…groovy? It makes your head bob. It has funk and heart. And at six minutes, it doesn’t lose your attention for a second. A strong ending to a cool sample of songs.

With the Murder EP, MINT shows there is a lot to come from a band not afraid to step out of the constructive musical box. For three songs, there’s immense depth, and listeners should be excited for what’s next in store from such a promising act.

SCORE: 9/10
Written by Matthew Leimkuehler (@callinghomematt)

Purchase ‘Murder’ today.

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Kyle Florence http://underthegunreview.net <![CDATA[Stream Banks’ Debut Studio Album, ‘GODDESS’]]> http://www.underthegunreview.net/?p=1130187 2014-09-13T04:04:23Z 2014-09-13T03:46:47Z A few days back, rising Los Angeles starlet Banks released her highly anticipated debut album, GODDESS, via Harvest Records. Intimate and haunting, if you have yet to secure a copy of your own, you can stream the entire 14-track effort by following the jump below.

This latest offering, which has been steadily climbing the ITunes charts since its debut, acts as a follow-up to the songstress’ 2013 London EP, and features production from SOHN, Lil Silva, Shlohmo, and many others. If you like what you hear, let us know in the replies.

Back in June, Banks wrapped up …

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A few days back, rising Los Angeles starlet Banks released her highly anticipated debut album, GODDESS, via Harvest Records. Intimate and haunting, if you have yet to secure a copy of your own, you can stream the entire 14-track effort by following the jump below.

This latest offering, which has been steadily climbing the ITunes charts since its debut, acts as a follow-up to the songstress’ 2013 London EP, and features production from SOHN, Lil Silva, Shlohmo, and many others. If you like what you hear, let us know in the replies.

Back in June, Banks wrapped up her first-ever headlining tour, and later this month, will hit the road once again before buzzing across the pond. To see if she’ll be coming to a venue near you, head here.

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Kyle Florence http://underthegunreview.net <![CDATA[Polyenso To Release New Music In October]]> http://www.underthegunreview.net/?p=1130176 2014-09-13T03:43:44Z 2014-09-13T02:41:14Z Earlier today, Florida’s Polyenso (ex-Oceana) took to social media to inform fans that they would be releasing new music next month. Check out the group’s Gallagher-esque announcement by peeking below the jump.

Last year, the St. Petersburg five-piece self-released one of the most wonderfully unique records of 2013, and since then, a good majority of the UTG staff has been eagerly awaiting a follow-up. Let us know if you’re as excited as we are in the replies.

If for some reason you’ve been sleeping on the outfit, now is as good as time as any to get acquainted. In …

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Earlier today, Florida’s Polyenso (ex-Oceana) took to social media to inform fans that they would be releasing new music next month. Check out the group’s Gallagher-esque announcement by peeking below the jump.

Last year, the St. Petersburg five-piece self-released one of the most wonderfully unique records of 2013, and since then, a good majority of the UTG staff has been eagerly awaiting a follow-up. Let us know if you’re as excited as we are in the replies.

If for some reason you’ve been sleeping on the outfit, now is as good as time as any to get acquainted. In addition to the previously referenced announcement, my favorite cut from One Big Particular Loop, “Always Ending in You,” can additionally be found below.

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Brian Lion http://underthegunreview.net <![CDATA[Arms and Sleepers Stream “Tiger Tempo” From ‘Swim Team’]]> http://www.underthegunreview.net/?p=1130169 2014-09-12T23:23:37Z 2014-09-12T23:19:45Z We’ve been hyping the forthcoming Arms And Sleepers album since we found out it was a thing and we’ll continue to do so up until its October 28 release — and after. The Boston duo have released a few cuts so far and today we’ve been gifted yet another from their fifth LP, Swim Team.

“Tiger Tempo” brings together the act’s earlier catalog moody ambience and newly incorporated vibes of late ’80s/early ’90s, downtempo hip-hop instrumentals. Think Tycho meets J Dilla and you should be right on track.

The new single serves as the perfect soundtrack for a chilled …

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We’ve been hyping the forthcoming Arms And Sleepers album since we found out it was a thing and we’ll continue to do so up until its October 28 release — and after. The Boston duo have released a few cuts so far and today we’ve been gifted yet another from their fifth LP, Swim Team.

“Tiger Tempo” brings together the act’s earlier catalog moody ambience and newly incorporated vibes of late ’80s/early ’90s, downtempo hip-hop instrumentals. Think Tycho meets J Dilla and you should be right on track.

The new single serves as the perfect soundtrack for a chilled out Friday afternoon. Kick back and get into it after the break (via XLR8R).

Swim Team drops on October 28 through Fake Chapter. You can pre-order a digital or physical copy of your own right here.

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Kriston McConnell http://underthegunreview.net <![CDATA[Watch Foo Fighters Tear Up A Small Venue As The Holy Shits]]> http://www.underthegunreview.net/?p=1130162 2014-09-12T22:58:23Z 2014-09-12T21:42:08Z I think it’s safe to say that Dave Grohl is a badass. He has been in the music industry for a long time, and is in one of the most respected rock bands in the world (Foo Fighters, of course). You’d think all that would get to his head, but from what we’ve seen time and time again, it most certainly has not.

A prime example of how awesome he can be: his band played a secret show at a teeny tiny venue in England the other night. Not only that, but they were on the lineup as …

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I think it’s safe to say that Dave Grohl is a badass. He has been in the music industry for a long time, and is in one of the most respected rock bands in the world (Foo Fighters, of course). You’d think all that would get to his head, but from what we’ve seen time and time again, it most certainly has not.

A prime example of how awesome he can be: his band played a secret show at a teeny tiny venue in England the other night. Not only that, but they were on the lineup as The Holy Shits. From the video that was taken of the performance, it must have been a blast. You can check out a few videos by taking a look beneath the break.

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Kriston McConnell http://underthegunreview.net <![CDATA[Check Out The Album Details For Young Statues’ Sophomore Full-Length Album]]> http://www.underthegunreview.net/?p=1130158 2014-09-12T21:37:11Z 2014-09-12T21:17:51Z Yesterday Young Statues made a very exciting announcement. They confirmed that they will release a new studio album next month, titled The Flatlands Are Your Friend, set to hit stores October 21 via Run For Cover Records.. This will be their sophomore full-length effort, and fourth release overall. You can check out the artwork and tracklist by taking a look below the break.

Be sure to check in again soon as we will likely hear a new single from the band in the near future. In the meantime, be sure to keep up to date on their shenanigans by …

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Yesterday Young Statues made a very exciting announcement. They confirmed that they will release a new studio album next month, titled The Flatlands Are Your Friend, set to hit stores October 21 via Run For Cover Records.. This will be their sophomore full-length effort, and fourth release overall. You can check out the artwork and tracklist by taking a look below the break.

Be sure to check in again soon as we will likely hear a new single from the band in the near future. In the meantime, be sure to keep up to date on their shenanigans by following them on Facebook.

Young Statues

01. Natives
02. Run The River Dry
03. Don’t Fight The Mirage
04. Got The Knife
05. No Shadow
06. Flood
07. Further Away
08. Flatlands (pt. 2)
09. Ain’t A Bad Thing To Lose
10. White Noise
11. Strangers In A Dream

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