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Vow of Volition Make the Final Round of the Battle for Warped Tour

The Vans Warped Tour was the first festival for many of us back in the day. As young'ns, it's likely we didn't necessarily think about all that went into figuring out the bands to book and play the whole shebang. Part of that process, at least locally, seems to be through a series "battle of the bands" style competitions specifically for landing a spot on the fest. Quite a few Portland bands have been furiously playing against one another for said spot, and djent/prog metal act Vow of Volition are one of the acts that made it to the finals.

Warped Tour was always the type of festival that included much in the realm of pop punk, punk punk, emo and metal, so Vow of Volition's advancement to the final round is no surprise. Their incredibly technical, at times jazzy metal stands out in Portland's pretty linear popular music scene, and is much worthy of the attention its getting.

Those that want to support Vow of Volition in driving home the permanent spot can go to the Battle for Warped Tour finals Saturday at the Hawthorne Theatre.

Kara Jackson "no fun/party"

Kara Jackson recently released her first single since 2019 and her very first music video, "no fun/party".

Jackson, a former national youth poet laureate, is an incredibly strong lyricist and vocalist.

DELI PREMIERE: Floated sells the "Sizzle" with new cat-themed downtempo track

photo by Leon Farrant 

SIZZLE is an EP by the artist known as Floated recently released on Totally Real Records and it’s just the sort of synth-stained downtempo dreamwave planetarium soundtrack rolled up in a tangerine swisher with marmalade skies projected on the dome’s ceiling that you didn’t realize you needed until you heard it and realized that you need these five crystalline tracks in your life designed for floating high above this beleaguered blue marble of ours for the duration of 12 minutes and 2 seconds or for even longer if you put the EP on repeat.

Either way, David Maine a.k.a. Floated has got you covered from the opening ambient wash of lead-off track “3AM Intro” (an ideal hour for giving SIZZLE a spin!) which soon envelopes the listener in slow-motion-placid-on-the-surface swirling amniotic-cosmic sonic afterbirth alongside ricocheting lo-fi beats and vinyl surface noise and disembodied seraphic voices…

…to the record-closing “End of the World Outro” a mellow best-case apocalyptic scenario that sounds something like if Claude Debussy rose from the grave and gave his 1909 piano miniature “Voiles” an upgrade with sub-bass tones and chiming guitars ostinatos and Air-esque blunted vocals the latter of which being an appropriately Gallic reference point for the undead Debussy.

And then finally there’s the penultimate track and single “Me and My Cat Are Busy TTYL” (see above for a WORLD PREMIERE sneak peek at the music video!) a chilled out track that perfectly captures the feline grace of a tuxedo-clad tabby chilling out in the chill-out room coming down after a full day of pogo dancing to happy hardcore for hours on end after snorting crushed MDMA pills off the teats of a hard partying puss in go-go boots even though the video for the song (directed by Floated, edited by Brendan Dean) depicts a more innocent domestic scene.

And at long last just in case you’re curious about this enigmatic “Floated” character and would like a snappy biographical profile here’s the skinny quoted straight from the Totally Real press release: "Floated is the Brooklyn-based project of producer & songwriter David Maine. A classically trained pianist and multi-instrumentalist, Maine was previously the bass player for the band Frankie Cosmos who he toured and recorded with for four years, often alongside his brother Aaron Maine (of Porches).

In 2018, Maine began refining his voice as a solo musician in his bedroom studio. Floated is his outlet to cultivate an imaginative and focused sonic world, capturing snapshots of his life in music and coloring them with inspirations, spanning from vaporwave to grimy upbeat electronic-RnB.” (Jason Lee)

Homade gets transactional on new single "Eggshells (I Know Your Secret)"

photo by Daniel Weiss

The cat’s out of the bag. Homade knows your secret. 

This fact is made abundantly clear in the opening moments of the foursome’s new single “Eggshells (I Know Your Secret)” with the parenthetical phrase repeated enough times for you to get the point. And while soon it’s revealed that they’ll keep your secret (phew!) they'll only do so “so long as you do just what [they] say” (d’oh!) and what’s more not until they've got you walking on eggshells and kissing their collective feet so clearly we’re not dealing with good faith negotiators here.


Granted that latter threat may serve as enticement for some but either way Homade clearly relishes the opportunity to hold the revelation of said secret over your head, erm, feet, as indicated not only by the song’s not-yet-tea-spilling lyrics but also by the coy, teasing Bratz Doll tone of their delivery and also by the music itself because if ever a song sounded like it was taunting you while taking devilish delight in doing so it’s this one.


But here’s the thing: Homade has a way of making your potential ruination sound alluring, maintaining a delicious musical tension throughout that's only bolstered by the song’s lack of release in both musical terms and secret-keeping terms. Plus they clearly have a knack for morality tales with sing-songy vocals and grunge-encrusted-yet-etherial musical aesthetics because “Sally (Live At Holy Fang)" which is the other half of the double-single they released concurrently with “Eggshells," also ticks off these particular boxes—a fractured fairy tale about a girl who “fell down a well [and] went right to hell” recorded live that ebbs and flows enticingly over the course of nearly five minutes. 

And for further confirmation you should also check out Homade's debut single “Blue Fish” which sounds like it was literally recorded underwater with its slithering bass line and shimmering pointillistic guitar bubbles percolating to the surface and if this all sounds like your particular cup of tea (spilled or non-spilled) or maybe your “cup of cuttlefish" sticking with the aquatic theme here then by all means give these songs a listen. (Jason Lee)

Homade play the Holy Fang "Animal Home" festival on August 20, 2022 with an all-round amazing lineup of performers...



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