Flea + Former Mars Volta Members = Antemasque

flea-600-1397057872Rolling Stone reports: “Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea has teamed with Mars Volta nucleus Omar Rodrí­guez-López and Cedric Bixler-Zavala and mid-era Mars Volta drummer Dave Elitch to form the new band Antemasque.”

This should be interesting. As played-out as RHCP have been for well over a decade (more, if you’re like me), Flea is obviously great at what he does and is a natural musical adventurer. He previously collaborated with Mars Volta, who have since broken up, but were also known for experimentation and blurring genres.

Check out some studio footage of the new band at work.

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Omar Rodriguez-Lopez Confirms The Mars Volta’s Hiatus
Flea Of Red Hot Chili Peppers Releases First Solo Album For Charity

Jekyll & Hyde: Rockers And Their Alter Ego Side Projects

It’s always interesting to find out that one of your favorite artists, known for a particular genre, is quite talented in another style of music. Sometimes fans get so used to a person as a specific character fulfilling a familiar role that, at times, it can be a surprise to hear the musician’s alter ego. Often times though, it can be and eye-opening experience, creating crossovers and introducing listeners to a new style of music that they would have otherwise been oblivious to. So, with that in mind, I’d like to acknowledge and pay respect to a few eclectic rockers who have challenged their fanbases with side-projects that are almost polar opposites from their main work. Some you may know, others may surprise you. In the end, you may feel inspired to finally start that pseudo-electronic jazz fusion folk band you’ve been dreaming about for so long. (more…)

Flea Of Red Hot Chili Peppers Releases First Solo Album For Charity

Michael “Flea” Balzary, the usually/mostly naked, hair-dyed, wildboy bassist for Red Hot Chili Peppers, has released his first ever solo album, entitled Helen Burns. However, in contrast with his rambunctious stage presence and famously upbeat alternative funk rock band, the new album “is a mostly instrumental, weird and arty record,” says Flea. “[T]he music is mostly just me creating soundscapes that are very emotional for me, but certainly not for everyone! Just me tripping out at home.” It’s available here as a name-your-price download or 180-gram vinyl, and all proceeds go toward The Silverlake Conservatory of Music, described by the musician as “a community based non profit music school that I am an integral part of.” Whether or not you’re a fan of RHCP, this is highly recommended listening – you might be pleasantly surprised.


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Red Hot Chili Peppers Announce Singles Series

A couple weeks ago, Flea teased fans via Twitter, revealing plans to release a set of RHCP singles over the next few months.


Today the band announced that all 18 singles were recorded during the I’m With You sessions (not surprising, considering they couldn’t fit all the material from their Stadium Arcadium sessions onto a single disc); the previously unheard tracks will be released in pairs as digital downloads and on 7″ vinyl. “Strange Man” and “Long Progression” will be released August 14th, followed by “Magpies”/”Victorian Machinery” September 11th, and “Never Is A Long Time”/”Love Of Your Life” on October 2nd. Fans can expect the yet-to-be-titled fourth, fifth, and sixth set of singles on November 6th, December 4th, and December 18th, respectively. The final A-side/B-side pair is slated for release in early 2013.

“Some songs seem to have a lot more of an agenda than others,” said RHCP guitarist Josh Klinghoffer. “Some songs play well with others and some songs need more attention and a little extra care. Here are some songs that seemed to want to pair up and take a later train. Keep your eye on them, they’re up to something…”

Each 7″ release will feature artwork by Kelsey Brookes, whose backround in microbiology, surf culture, and folk art combine to create frantic, colorful images. By combing all nine of the 7-inch releases, fans will be able to create a larger piece of artwork.

Thursday, January 5th, 2012


OSBlog_HowTo_DevLookIn music, the adage that it’s what’s on the inside that counts holds true ¦ sometimes. Though there are countless mainstream performers out there who possess both musical ability and style, there are few who only possess the former (We’re looking at you, Susan Boyle.) In fact, if you had to choose between the two, it’s almost safer to go for style over substance (Hey, Britney).

Unfortunately, musicians are books whose covers are constantly judged. And as much as you may not want to buy into the whole image aspect of your craft, the fact remains that industry players are looking at you as a marketable package. That means your music and your look need to translate to the masses.

The good news is, the sky is the limit when it comes to what your look can be. If Flea is allowed to rock a diaper, and Prince gets away with ass-less chaps, then chances are your personal style won’t be a hindrance to your career, no matter how off-center it is.

That said, here are a few guidelines to keep in mind:

¢ If you’re in a band, cohesiveness is key. Choose one general look and try to stick with it. Separate characters may have worked for the Village People, but you probably want your music taken a little more seriously.

¢ Choose a look that represents your music. Though sometimes the element of surprise can be a good thing, in general you want to try to avoid any big disconnect between your look and sound. Meaning if you’re a hard core rapper, you probably shouldn’t dress like Stevie Nicks onstage. Of course, there are always exceptions to the rule ¦ Gnarls Barkley somehow pull off their hip hop/pop dressed as 1970s tennis players and storm troopers. But gimmicks aren’t for everyone”whatever you choose, make sure it feels right for you.

¢ Cultivate your individuality. You might love suits, but that look isn’t exactly going to set you apart from the hundreds of other indie bands who do too. Same thing with saggy jeans and gold chains for hip hop artists. Though you want your look to represent your music, there is still room to put your own unique spin on your wardrobe. If you’re L’il Wayne, you go for tighter jeans. If you’re Katy Perry, you go pin-up model. And if you’re Lady Gaga, well, you go off the deep end.

Developing your own look can be as simple as adding a signature pocket square to your suit, or as complicated as sewing an army of Kermit the Frogs to your sweater. The main rule of thumb is to stretch your imagination while staying true to yourself. If you can do that, you’ll be covered.