Back From the Dead: The Revival of Vinyl

A new start-up company is striving to meet the fast-growing appreciation for vinyl with an affordable but high-fidelity turntable.

Over a quarter century ago, record players and the accompanying 12 vinyl discs were packed up in the attic, left to collect dust, and eventually sold at tag sales for a few bucks. But within the past few years, there has been resurgence in the demand for more vinyl among listeners. In 2011, vinyl sales rose nearly 40% from the previous year. Interestingly enough, the past 6 years prior to 2011 marked a steady decline in vinyl sales each year. In 2012, that number climbed nearly an additional 18% from 2011.

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Rise Records Announces Spring Tour

Rise Records has recently announced that they will be sponsoring a tour which will feature Like Moths To Flames, Crown The Empire, The Color Morale, Palisades, and My Ticket Home. The tour will start April 19 and will finish May 4. Click here to find out the tour dates and locations.

New Single Release: Paramore's "Now"

For those of you who have been waiting to hear some new music from Paramore, the three years of burning anticipation can be quelled for at least a little while. Yesterday, the band released their first single, entitled “Now.” The song is from their upcoming self-titled album, available April 9. To listen to the single, click here and peruse the multiple pre-order options available.

Since members/brothers Josh and Zac Farro left the band back in 2010, the group has shown no signs of disbanding and, judging by the new single, is going strong. The track pulls heavily from the Gwen Stefani/No Doubt school of sing-talking during the verses, as well as some of the more grandiose production techniques of Muse. Additionally, singer Hayley Williams has admitted getting more into EDM over the past year, which has also subtly made its way into the mix. Enjoy.

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Album Review: We Came As Romans – "Understanding What We've Grown To Be"

We Came As Romans‘ (WCAR) sophomore album, Understanding What We’ve Grown To Be, has been re-released for 2013 in a deluxe edition with three additional tracks.

Thematically, the album offers a comprehensive meditation on the challenges and struggles we encounter as we grow older, and the maturity that we gain from life’s calamities. Yet, the band retains the positive sense of camaraderie so familiar from their first album, To Plant A Seed. Among all of the bands within the metalcore scene, WCAR has defined themselves by creating a unique sonic niche, utilizing slightly altered metalcore characteristics, synthesizers, and clean, auto-tuned vocals.

Driving, syncopated patterns create a groove familiar to metalcore. However, lead guitarist Joshua Moore provides melodic phrases that flow over the groove and help create a distinct sound. Additionally, clean vocalist Kyle Pavone and screamer David Stephens compliment each other and deliver well-articulated lyrics. The high production value on the album helps to blend all of the elements together, though it also seems to cover up the main criticism the band consistently receives – Pavone’s lack of delivery during live performances. But his vocals work well here; the slight auto-tune and a generous amount of reverb create a nice change from Stephens’ screaming. Combined with arrangement elements such as breakdowns, melodic passages, lulls featuring synthesized groove patterns, and tempo changes, the music and vocals seem to mesh effortlessly.

In a well-executed display by a band that can distinguish itself from the rest of the ever-growing metalcore scene, Understanding What We’ve Grown To Be conquers the sophomore album jinx. While I wouldn’t say that it is better than their debut release, I will say that We Came As Romans have been able to produce a solid album that is not a carbon copy of their first.

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Warped Tour Announces blessthefall, Motion City Soundtrack, and More

The Vans Warped Tour has added seven new acts to the 2013 tour. Among the near 40 bands already on the lineup, blessthefall, Motion City Soundtrack, Big D and the Kids Table, Goldhouse, Five Knives, Echosmith, and Itch have all officially signed on to the tour. You can view the rest of the lineup and check out the tour dates and locations here.

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Fans Fund Protest The Hero's New Album

Having recently parted ways with Vagrant Records, Protest The Hero has turned to their fan base to fund a new album. Having recently fulfilled all contractual obligations, Protest the Hero has put together this fantastic video in an effort to successfully create an album on their own terms.

The response has been remarkable. With donation levels ranging from $10-$5000, each with a unique reward, the band has raised over $136,000 – far surpassing their $125,000 goal. Check out the video that helped inspire that kind of support from the band’s fans.

Watch it here.

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