VIDEO: Life on Tour for Phoenix Bands A Distant Calm and Kardashev

Categories: Video

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Austin Paetow
Kardashev at Malone's Bar and Grill

Making it in a metal band isn't easy. Yet A Distant Calm and Kardashev, from Mesa and Tempe respectively, keep trying anyway.

Both bands packed into one van and went on their first tour this past weekend. The original plan was a set of dates in Tucson, San Diego, Van Nuys, and ending in Las Vegas.

Just a week before they left, promoters canceled the tour dates in Van Nuys and Las Vegas. Luckily, booking agent Seth Stephens was able to get the bands a show in Santa Ana, California in place of the Las Vegas date.

The tour was demanding, exhausting and in the end, especially thanks to the the canceled shows, not profitable.

Yet, the bands say they wouldn't hesitate to do it again.


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5 Must-See Local Music Videos

Categories: Video

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YouTube
A screenshot from Luna Aura's "Too Young To Die"
Creating an interesting, engaging, or exciting music video is no easy trick. In some ways, it sometimes can be as challenging as creating the song that its showcasing. While the audio end is covered, filmmakers or video creators have to conjure up a visual representation of the track being featured that either compliments, interprets, or accentuates it while telling a story of sorts and being an work of art on its own.

And if you're a local band, things get even more complicated given the limited resources that one has at their disposal. Everyone would love to make something as spectacular or grandiose as that bizarrely unforgettable video for "Turn Down for What," but don't have cash to burn.


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Tempe's Simply Three Cover Janelle Monáe With the Help of Her Backing Musicians

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The members of Simply Three with Kellindo, Glen McDaniel, and others.
If you have neither heard nor heard of Simply Three, you really ought to start paying attention, or, at the very least, give them a listen. Thousands of others certainly have, as the Tempe-based classical crossover trio, comprised of three local string musicians, has gotten a lot of praise in recent months for their fantastic instrumental versions of well-known pop and rock songs.

In the last year alone, Simply Three has earned a ton of attention (and hundreds of thousands if YouTube views) from covering such hitmakers as OneRepublic, Pharrell Williams, and Imagine Dragons, each time transposing pop bombast into joyous string music in artful fashion.

The trio's latest release, a mashup cover of Janelle Monáe's "Cold War" and "Tightrope" that was recently released, is certainly no exception. And, in an interesting twist, the song features two of Monáe's backup musicians.

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Rapper Samuel Turner Aims to Fuel the Phoenix Suns' Playoff Hopes With "Suns Rise"

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Flickr via colintrex
It's rally time for the Phoenix Suns.
The Phoenix Suns need all the help they can get right now. The surprise team of the 2013-2014 season is currently in ninth place in the NBA Western Conference playoff race, and with only seven games left in their season, the team needs something -- anything -- to help propel them towards nabbing a post-season berth.

And one local rapper named Samuel Turner hopes that a little local music love might just be the thing to inspire purple and orange gang.

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Captain Squeegee Discovers Clay Aliens and a Few Apocalypses in Band's Ridiculous New Video

Categories: Video

Captain Squeegee Masons

It’s not that I’m not used to Captain Squeegee going out of its way to do something; as lead singer Danny Torgersen’s Facebook friend, I recently watched from a social-media-distance as he attempted to find some non-fluoridated water, which is not something I spend a lot of time worrying about. It’s not even that I didn’t know the band had a stop-motion animated video in the pipeline; when we talked about To the Bardos back in December, he mentioned it was coming and told me about the hundreds of hours animator Johnny McHone had spent building, moving, and destroying clay models to make it.

It’s just that there’s a difference between someone telling you -- with his characteristic hyper-enthusiasm -- that they’re working on an absurdly ornate claymation video and actually seeing it. Squeegee released the “Inevitable” video Tuesday, and it’s worth seeing it.

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Dry River Yacht Club's New Video Tells "The Legend of El Tigre"

Categories: Video

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Fans of Phoenix music already know that Dry River Yacht Club can rock all the
best local music venues. They get down at the Crescent, they can pack the Sail Inn -- Marquee Theatre, Rhythm Room. Check, check, check.

But a lot of local bands can do that. Where the Yacht Club stands out is its ability to not only play for your average music fan, but keep the ears of crowds at events like Sunday's A'Fair at the Scottsdale Center for Performing Arts. Or down in Tucson at the more spiritual All Souls Procession.

While they were pleasing those diverse crowds, they were putting the finishing touches on their video "The Legend of El Tigre" -- released today 1:13 p.m. Watch it below.


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The Venomous Pinks Explain "Never Say Never" (VIDEO)

Categories: Video
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Local punk rock band The Venomous Pinks are fighting for gender equality in the music business every time they take the stage. The three-lady group says they face challenges at every gig they play because audience members aren't always used to seeing so much female power on stage, and they're hoping to change perceptions with their current single and video, "Never Say Never."

"The song is about never saying never to your goals and dreams," says guitarist Drea Doll. "We're fun, and we rock just as much as the boys do."

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The Hourglass Cats Make You Miss Summer With A New Video at Fossil Creek

Categories: News, Video

The Hourglass Cats (Ben Garcia)
Ben Garcia
The Hourglass Cats "are not a white-boy reggae band."
The Hourglass Cats released their video for their single "Sense," on Monday. The video is their first from their May 2013 EP, 432. The video is a plotless ode to the summertime day trips that Phoenicians take to get out of the sweltering Phoenix heat.

"I mean, obviously, it's an Arizona thing," says lead singer Cori Rios. "If you're going to the beach, that's fake--we aren't from California, we're not going to the beach. We're going to watering holes and little oases, our version of going to the water--lakes, rivers, Sedona, whatever it is. As a Phoenix kid I've known about Fossil Creek and day-tripping to get out of the heat. You go to the water and a lot of our songs are about running to the water and getting away and escaping."


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decker. Has Bonnie Kill Clyde in the Band's New Video

Categories: News, Video

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Emily Caldwell
decker. goes back on the lam
Sedona-based decker. has been playing atmospheric desert-folk jams across Arizona and beyond for years, making multiple nationwide tours and earning a place on the main stage at last year's McDowell Mountain Music Festival.

The group's music possesses a certain quality that fills in the empty space at all its live shows. The warm sounds of its instruments creep in and keep every audience member planted in their space as if the venue is packed shoulder to shoulder. (Many times it is, especially in the Valley.)

The group's 2013 release Slider is easily one of the best albums to come out of Arizona this year. "I put every bit of my life on the line with that album," said frontman Brandon Decker. Musicians have turned that into a cliche over the decades, but for Decker and bandmate Kelly Cole, those words carry a deeper meaning.

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Fayuca Premieres New Acoustic Music Video for "Tricky Sneaky Sleeves"

Categories: Video

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The fellas from Fayuca are fresh off another successful tour supporting their wicked-cool record, Barrio Sideshow, released earlier this year. Thanks in large part to the video placement of their lead single "Por Que Seguir" on MTVu, the boys from Phoenix are finding it a lot easier to fill venues across the country.

"It was the first time that we actually saw new faces that were already engaged and intrigued by what the band was doing," singer/guitarist Gabriel Solorzano says of their recent leg.

Solorzano and his crew are hoping to keep the momentum going with a new video series titled The Bomb Shelter Sessions. The music videos give an intimate look at acoustic renditions of tracks off the album.

"We thought, why not give this to the people who are listening to our music?" Solorzano says. "They might want to hear the lyrics clearly, and the cracks in my voice and the notes that I struggle with."

The first video in the series is for "Tricky Sneaky Sleeves" and is getting its premiere on Up on the Sun. Read on for the full interview and catch Solorzano and drummer Raf Ruiz later today at the Crescent Ballroom for an acoustic meet-and-greet session from noon to 2 p.m.

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