Canadian Punks PUP Bring Their Dramatic, Exciting Punk to Phoenix

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Yoshi Cooper, photo courtesy of SideOneDummy Records
PUP brings its high-energy punk-rock to Phoenix this coming Tuesday.

"Do you remember that Simpsons episode where Bart changes schools, and they put him in the 'slow' class? And they have the kid from Canada, saying 'I'm from Canada, and they think I'm slow, ayyy.' It's like that, to sort of adopt that mentality, talk about our igloos and stuff."

Though PUP guitarist Steve Sladkowski is quite amused by his Canadian brethren, contrary to the above statement, the Toronto-based punk band is not a bunch of hosers from the north. Currently embarking on its first U.S. headlining tour, the barely-three-year-old band is set to arrive in Phoenix on October 21 at the Rhythm Room, alongside fellow punk upstarts Hard Girls.

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The Venomous Pinks Are a Punk Band, Not a Girl Band

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Punk rock comes in all shapes, all sizes, all colors, and all genders. Originally, it was a badge of courage with the ability to supersede all of the aforementioned labels, but somewhere along the way, it has segmented itself like other aspects of society -- probably because of the stupid human brain, but that is another story altogether.

What's important here is the simple fact that The Venomous Pinks are a punk band. Not a "girl" band or a "chick" band, but a punk band, and on October 17, they will celebrate the release of their second EP, Exes and Whoas, at the Yucca Tap Room.

Even in this day and age, when anyone with a thousand bucks and a cassette recorder can put out a CD, the second EP for a four-year-old band is no small feat. Better yet, people around town seem to actually like The Venomous Pinks (as they should) and are excited about this release. Drea Doll (guitar), Gaby Kaos (bass), and Jukie (drums) have created a powerful five-song offering drenched in frustration, attitude, and East Coast-style punk panache. With the recent addition of former Dames (longtime local punks who also featured Drea Doll) guitar player Corrie Zazzera to round out the sound, these musicians are ready to take the next step in their evolution.

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The Musical Mad Scientists of Canada's Royal Canoe

Royal Canoe

Those who showed up early to the Bombay Bicycle Club show in April at Crescent Ballroom were privy to the layered experimental sounds of Winnipeg's Royal Canoe. The sextet, making its inaugural trip to the Valley, stood like a group of mad scientists over their boards and laptops to create avant-garde hip-hop influenced loops of sound with the tight precision of a Swiss watch, never missing a beat. Imagine six Roxy Music-era Brian Eno's huddled over their knobs and dials bouncing to the sound of their own beat and singing into a vocoder without a Bryan Ferry standing over them in jealousy and you've got the idea.

"There's a lot of tasks onstage," describes vocalist and guitarist Matt Peters, "Every night you have to be on your toes. There's always something challenging coming up. We all prefer it that way, though. I give our audiences a lot of credit. They want to be engaged in that way. They want to see a performance. They want to see people working. It's not to say anyone couldn't do what we're doing, but I feel like the audience responds well."

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The 30 Best Concerts in October

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Courtesy Photo
Queens of the Stone Age are scheduled to perform on Thursday, October 30, at the Arizona State Fair.
Our inbox was hit with an e-mail blast the other day from the proprietors of a local music venue who declared that October was going to be "insane" because of all the fantastic acts they has booked at the joint over the next few weeks. They ain't the only ones, however, as this month is literally wall-to-wall with big shows around Phoenix.

Don't believe us? Then be sure to check out our massive online concert calendar for proof. Or you can take our word for it: this is the time of you've been waiting for.

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Summer Ends Music Festival 2014: A Field Guide

Victor Palagano
A throng of local music fans gather at Tempe Beach Park in 2010.
Yup, it's almost here, and we know y'all have been waiting for it tirelessly, throughout the long, hot, and brutal months. Now, it's only mere days away.

So are we talking about to the end of summer? Well, yeah, that too (since temperatures will start to decrease later this week) but we're mainly referring to this weekend's Summer Ends Music Festival at Tempe Beach Park.

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Godsmack's Shannon Larkin on the Band's "Almost" Breakup


By the end of 2012, Godsmack's concert album the band released that year,Live and Inspired, was the furthest thing from the band's mind.

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Meet Sean Hayes, the Singer Your Lady Friends Love

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Sean Hayes

San Francisco-based singer-songwriter Sean Hayes knows you heard about him from your folk-music-loving lady friend. He says he gets that a lot. "I feel like women are the gateway," he jokes.

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The 30 Best Concerts in September

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The Replacements are scheduled to perform on Saturday, September 27, during the Summers End Music Festival at Tempe Beach Park.
Your patience is about to be rewarded. Now that we're quickly approaching the moment when all the you-know-what begins to fade, life will start getting back to normal in the Valley. And by normal, we mean must-see music events and gigs out the ying-yang.

Over the coming weeks, show both large and small will light up Metro Phoenix venues, including one the biggest concert fests of the fall, Summer Ends Music Festival v.1.

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Best Metal Concerts to See in Phoenix in September

Victor Palagano
Rob Zombie is coming to Phoenix later in September.

Our desert summer is finally winding down; and really, it wasn't so bad, now was it? It's probably in part to the awesome parade of metal shows that came through our fair state since the music industry's touring season was in full swing. Either way, at least the September nights will only be in the 90s when you're leaving those sweat- and blood-drenched mosh pits.

September is filled to the brim with heavy metal shows around Metro Phoenix, thanks to concerts and gigs by locals and major international legends. As such, we're on the lookout for the best upcoming shows.

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The Black Moods: "We Want People to be Sad to Our Songs, and Also Have Sex to Our Songs."

Photo by Jeremy Huse
The Black Moods are scheduled to perform Saturday, August 30, at Crescent Ballroom.

Black Moods fans eagerly anticipating the release of the rock band's follow-up to their eclectic self-titled debut album will have to hold their breath a little longer. The Phoenix-based trio is tabling their upcoming album for a short time in an effort to strengthen the material, lengthen the album, and fine-tune the details. The decision came as a request from the band's new management team, Street Smart Marketing, who is working to push the group to the next level in their career.

"In the past year and a half, we've learned a lot about business," Black Moods drummer Danny "Chico" Diaz explains, "and about touring. We decided our goals were to get management, and then get a record label -- we've hit the first goal, and we have management now."

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