Monday, January 31, 2011

CONCERT ANNOUNCEMENT: Nickelodeon's Drake Bell @ Scout Bar

by Chad Cooper, January 28, 2011

Nickelodeon star Drake Bell with special guest Emily Osment of Disney Channel's "Hannah Montana" fame will perform an all-ages show at Scout Bar on Tuesday, March 22 with doors opening at 6 p.m.

Advance tickets are $26 and are on sale now at Frontgate Tickets, and charge-by-phone at (888) 512-SHOW. Tickets can also be purchased at the Scout Bar Box Office during its normal operating hours (Wed-Sun, 8p-2a).

Bell is the co-star of "Drake & Josh" on Nickelodeon and has earned 9 Kid's Choice Awards.

He was first professionally associated with music in the 2001 movie Chasing Destiny, in which he co-starred with Roger Daltrey of The Who.

Bell has recorded two albums and will release a third in 2011.

, who played "Lilly Truscott" in the Emmy-nominated Disney Channel sitcom "Hannah Montana," released her debut album Fight or Flight last October on Wind-Up Records.

She also had roles in the big screen films Spy Kids 2: Island of Lost Dreams and Spy Kids 3-D: Game Over.

Venue info:

Sunday, January 30, 2011

CONCERT ANNOUNCEMENT: Avalanche Tour featuring Stone Stour & Theory of a Deadman coming to Houston

by Chad Cooper, January 30, 2011

The first Avalanche Tour featuring Stone Sour and Theory of a Deadman will rock Reliant Arena in Houston on Tuesday, April 12. Also performing are Skillet, Halestorm and Art Of Dying.

Tickets for the show will go on sale Saturday, Feb. 12 at 10 a.m. via Ticketmaster outlets including Ticket prices are $35.

From Des Moines, Iowa, three-time Grammy nominees Stone Sour entered the Billboard 200 chart at No. 6 with 2010’s Audio Secrecy on Roadrunner Records, featuring the Active Rock singles “Say You’ll Haunt Me,” which was No. 1 at Active Rock for 8 weeks, and “Hesitate.”

Other popular singles are "Bother," "Through Glass" and "Silly World."

Vancouver trio Theory of a Deadman is touring in support of Scars & Souvenirs, which has
sold over 900,000 copies and is rapidly approaching platinum status. The album features the No. 1 Mainstream Rock track “Bad Girlfriend.”

Other popular hits include "Santa Monica," "So Happy," "Hate My Life," "Not Meant to Be," "By the Way" and "End of the Summer." A new record will be released in 2011.

Atlantic recording artist Skillet has received two Grammy nominations and are still enjoying success from their 2009 release, Awake. Four songs were released to radio including "Monster," "Hero," "Awake and Alive," "Forgiven" and a fifth, "Lucy," will soon be heard on the airwaves.

Also on the Atlantic label, Halestorm released their self-titled debut in 2009, which produced two Top 10 singles on the Mainstream Rock charts — "I Get Off" and "It's Not You."

Art Of Dying is a five-piece rock band fronted by Jonny Hetherington. The Vancouver, Canada
based group is the newest signing to Reprise Records/Intoxication Records, the label started by
David Draiman and Dan Donegan of the multi-platinum selling band Disturbed. Their first single off the debut album, which will be released this year, is "Die Trying."

Saturday, January 29, 2011


by Chad Cooper, January 2011

Guitar purist Keith Finnell and childhood friend John Sheldon grew up together in Florida listening to good heavy rock music. So in high school, the two had the idea to start a band and they did just that — Ekotren.

With Derek Desantis (bass) and Frank Jargiello (drums) joining the two, the group began playing regionally and snagged an indie record deal and released Light the Fire.

After nearly two straight years touring, the band signed with BurnHill Union Records and released The Dead of Night this past week. It is a 10-song disc that is filled with tight guitar riffs, good vocals and enough energy to fire up a nuclear power plant.

Ekotren is currently on the road with Ill Niño and Finnell took time out to speak with 88 Miles West.

You have to be excited about the new record that just came out?

We are super excited. They are actually streaming the entire album this week on AOL. We are very proud of the project and worked very hard. We started writing in the spring and last summer we did the chore of the album.

Did you learn anything heading into your sophomore release?

The difference in this one is the experience. The first album was just that — the first album. Since then, we have been touring relentlessly and you really get to see what your fans like. You want to keep them happy but at the same time push yourself as a musician and expand. The more you play the more your band grows tighter. I am with these guys 24 hours a day and I sleep literally two feet away from all of them. We are a very close band and that shows on this record. It really clicks.

With a heavy tone, were there any influences from other bands?

I don’t know about direct influences, but we all listen to heavy music. We play what we like. I love Pantera, which is a Texas band from your state, and so you can hear the heavier stuff and we tend to be more aggressive.

Do you have a favorite on this record?

I like them all but I am really excited about ‘The End of the Day.’ It’s the first song on the album and its super heavy. It’s got a message behind it, which is, this is our band, this is what we do and we really do it for ourselves. It’s 100 percent real.

How important are live shows?

Oh, man. Very important, especially when you have a shorter time frame. You try to pick out what you think are the best songs that will appeal to the crowd. Being on the road with Ill Niño, we are playing more upbeat stuff. We try to cater to their fans some and hopefully turn a few into Ekotren fans. We will play some of the older stuff off ‘Light The Fire’ but most will be from the new record. Like I mentioned earlier, we are proud of the new album so we want to get it out there. We don’t have a lot of time on this tour, like 30 minutes, so we want to play as many as we can.

So what can newbies of EkoTrenexpect when they see you on stage?

A high-energy heavy metal rock show. Every day we give a 110 percent on stage. We also live at the merch (merchandise) table. We love to meet new people.

How’d you guys hook up with Ill Niño?

We actually did some shows with them a few years ago. We heard they were going back out on the road so we kind of reached out and let their manager, who is a friend of ours, know that we had a new record out and would love to hook back up. It’s a fun tour because of several different aspects, but one is touring to promote the new record.

Since you are doing 200-plus shows a year, is there a burnout factor?

We live for the moment to get on stage and perform and that’s what keeps us from getting burned out. There are days when some of us have our moments, like not getting enough sleep, but this is what we do. When we do get a few days off and go home, it seems like we are itching to get back on the road.

Any interesting story behind the name Ekotren?

Not really. I wish there was a good story, but there’s not. We wanted a cool name and we went on the Internet to check names. Our drummer actually came up with it.

Official Ekotren website
Follow Ekotren on Facebook
Click here to purchase Ekotren music

Friday, January 28, 2011

CD REVIEW: 'Paint The Stars' - Castle Lights

by Chad Cooper, January 2011

Castle Lights
Paint The Stars EP
(Magnolia Red)

People around the SETX music scene have always asked, have you heard of Castle Lights? The answer was no, until now.

This three-piece based in Houston consists of Tyler Scott Susuras (vocals, guitars), Jeremiah Adam Wood (guitar, vocals) and Aaron Michael Eaves (bass, background vocals). Don't worry, there are drums.

When I got the CD, I literally thought it was Coldpay, One Republic or SafetySuit. Not a cheap ripoff, but a sound that blew me away.

Track 1, "Saint Era," instantly latches your eardrum to the clean vocals, which brings backs the true alternative vibe. "Wait For You" is likely the favorite for those in love, "Maze Of Love" keeps it upbeat and the closer, "Paint The Stars," is icing on the cake.

Brit-pop even comes to mind, but not whiney like Oasis. I can't put my finger on it, but they certainly belong on the radio.

1. Saint Era (3:44)
2. Wait For You (3:39)
3. Bid You Farewell (4:30)
4. Maze Of Love (2:51)
5. Paint The Stars (3:24)

Click here to purchase Paint The Stars
Official Castle Lights website
Follow Castle Lights on Facebook
Follow Castle Lights on Twitter

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Video Interview: Chanel Preston

Video interview with Chanel Preston @ the 2011 AEE in Las Vegas.

Chanel was nominated for several awards at the 2011 AVN Awards including Best New Starlet.


Sunday, January 23, 2011

CONCERT ANNOUNCEMENT: 10 Years & Saving Abel to play Beaumont

The Gig on Crockett Street in Beaumont will be rocking when 10 Years & Saving Abel co-headline a big rock show on Thursday, March 3.

Tickets will go on sale Friday, Jan. 28. Advance tickets are $20.50 and can be purchased at area Florida Tans, Guitar & Banjo Studio in Beaumont and online at The Gig.

From Knoxville, 10 Years is touring in support of their fourth album on Universal Records, Feeding the Wolves.

Top singles are:
"Through the Iris"
"Actions & Motives"
"Shoot It Out"

10 Years will headline an all-ages show at Scout Bar in Clear Lake on Monday, Feb. 28. Tickets are $16. Saving Abel is not on the show. Opening is Digital Summer and A Cry Farewell.

Southern rockers Saving Abel have played Beaumont twice and return for a third time. They are touring in support of their No. 1 album Miss America on Virgin Records. The second single off the record, "Sex is Good," reached No. 1 on the Mainstream Rock chart.

Top singles are:
"18 Days"
"Drowning (Face Down)"
"The Sex is Good."

Opening the show will be Redline Chemistry.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Newly announced shows in Houston

Several national acts have been confirmed in Houston for the following venues:

Fri Feb 4 - Willie Nelson @ Verizon Wireless Theater
Tix: $69.50-$49.50
Doors: 7p, all ages

Wed Feb 9 - Flogging Molly @ House of Blues
Tix: $39.50-$30
Doors: 6:30p, all ages

Fri Feb 25 - Steve Miller Band @ House of Blues
Tix: $125-$49.50
Doors: 7:30p, all ages

Fri Feb 25 - Civil Twilight @ Warehouse Live
Tix: $12-$10
Doors: 7p, all ages

Sat Feb 26 - Metal Shop @ Scout Bar (Clear Lake)
Tix: $10
Doors: 8p, 18 & up

Wed March 16 - OMD @ House of Blues
Tix: $35-$20
Doors: 7p, all ages

Sat March 19 - Lords of Acid @ Scout Bar (Clear Lake)
Tix: $22-$18.50
Doors: 8p, 17 & up

Sat March 26 - The original House of Pain @ Warehouse Live
Tix: $25
Doors: 8p, all ages

Sat April 2 - Chris Cornell @ House of Blues
Tix: $35-$27.50
Doors: 7p, all ages

Tue April 26 - George Thorogood & The Destroyers @ House of Blues
Tix: $39.50-$23.50
Doors: 7p, all ages

Tue May 10 - Kylie Minogue @ Verizon Wireless Theater
Tix: $95-$75
Doors: 7p, all ages

Fri May 20 - My Chemical Romance @ House of Blues
Tix: $43.50-$33.50
Doors: 7p, all ages

Fri July 29 - Katy Perry @ Toyota Center
Tix: Start @ $45
Doors: 6:30p, all ages

CD REVIEW: 'Welcome Home' - Rehab

by Chad Cooper, January 2011

Welcome Home
(Universal Republic)

Country-fried, you could say. Maybe Uncle Kracker-esque, but much cooler.

This seven-piece from Warner Robins, Ga., which is southeast of Atlanta, is back with their fourth major release, second on Universal Republic.

If you are one of many who know Rehab because of their smash hit "Bartender" song, it's time to put brown gravy on that chick fried steak instead of the usual white.

This 10-song record starts mellow with "#1" then gets down and dirty with "Oh My." If you are looking for something similar to "Bartender," then check out the final track "Rideout Chick."

Despite a calmer vibe on this project, this song will remind you of the old Rehab. The chorus reads; "She's my little rideout chick, that I hideout with, 12-pack right beside her. And when it all goes down, she'll still be around, even if I don't wife her. My little rideout chick, tough little bitch, swear she got it goin' on. Says I can take her 'bout anywhere with me, just as long as I don't take her home."

What separates Rehab from the Uncle Kracker's of the world is the truth and sincerity behind the lyrics written by lead singer Danny Boone.

This album is much more calmer that previous Rehab records, but it shows their diversity.

Here's a plus — buy the CD and have them sign it whey they perform live at The Gig on Crockett Street in Beaumont, TX on Feb. 19 headlining the 2011 Lack of Luxury Tour.

Click here to purchase Welcome Home

Official Rehab website
Follow Rehab on Facebook

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

88 Miles West featured on celebrity blog site

88 Miles West was featured on the popularity celebrity blog website, Celebslam: Shocking Tales and Tawdry Behavior! after photoing celeb Andy Dick on the red carpet of the 2011 AVN Awards in Las Vegas on Jan. 8.

We were in Las Vegas for the 2011 Adult Entertainment Expo and were invited to photo the red carpet at the AVN Awards.

While shooting the red carpet, photographer David Block saw Dick being escorted off the red carpet and causing a ruckus.

Those photos can be seen here on Celebslam.