Saturday, September 24, 2016

Best In Vancouver - Sleepcircle


Sleepcircle is getting ready to rock the stage at Studio Records for the Best In Vancouver competition. We had a quick chat with the band about their thoughts on battle of the bands competitions around Vancouver.

Hammer Records: For those who might not be familiar with your band, can you give a brief description of the sound of your band?
Sleepcircle: A juicy blend of alternative, metal and prog.

Hammer Records: Have you checked out past “Best In Vancouver” competitions? What do you think gives your band the edge on the competition?
Sleepcircle: Our band has an edge because of our songwriting and coordinated outfits.

Hammer Records: What do you think of the battle of the bands competitions? Do they help build a scene?
Sleepcircle: Battle of the bands are great! It introduces you to regulars and up and comers in the scene and their girlfriends!

Hammer Records: What do you want to say to the sponsors who are helping putting on the event?
Sleepcircle: We love Jack Daniels! Not only is it a smooth and delicious Tennessee whiskey but a 260 is the perfect size and weight for braining the raccoons that are always rummaging around in the trash cans out back.

Hammer Records: Aside from playing the showcases, what is in the future for the band?
Sleepcircle: We're currently working on our EP and working to expand our presence in the Vancouver music scene through show and events such as this one.

Hammer Records: Do you believe in promoting with handbills or other methods that aren’t online? Or do you think that online promotion is key?
Sleepcircle: Online promotion is obviously crucial in promoting bands and shows in this social media age. It never hurts to do some boots on the ground promotion either! We imagine one day doing a WW2 style leaflet bombing campaign in which we drop thousands of leaflets over a city that say, "BUY OUR RECORD BUY OUR RECORD BUY OUR RECORD."

Hammer Records: What are your social media links and how can people find your music?
Sleepcircle

Instagram: sleepcircle

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Metal At The Media Club

Journeyman Productions put on a great bill of three up and coming bands at the Media Club on a Wednesday and we decided to go check it out. For a Wednesday night, we know the crowd wasn't going to be bit, but every person there was attentive and up front to support the bands which was nice to see.




Sundran was the first band to hit the stage and their mostly instrumental set really set the tone for the night. Their dynamics were fantastic and being an instrumental band, that is one of the key elements. Adding in the heavy vocals at key parts really made this band stand out. Their riffs were tight and the band overall had such a tight sound. Even though there were odd time signatures thrown around a lot, I found it relatively easy to head bang and follow along with. They are playing a show this Saturday at Funky Winkerbeans and I would highly recommend checking it out!



Porcelain Sky was up next and really blended well with the band before them. Their front man did a great job at getting the crowd interested from the start and kept it up all the way through the show. The bassist, guitarist and drummer really seemed locked together. When parts got quiet, the whole band got super quiet. When things got heavy, it seemed like everyone worked together and just sounded epic. This band has a lot going for them and I hope they keep working hard and I can't wait to see them open up for bigger and bigger bands!



When I was in a band called Freedom Ride, we played a few shows with Lungflower. Then even after that band was finished and I was in a new band called Moniker, who also played shows with Lungflower. This band has been around for ages and had a few member changes but seem to have a formula down for success right now. Their guitarist is just rocking crisp riffs and some great leads. Their bassist is just a monster of a man and even more of a monster on the bass! His thick grooving bass lines fit perfectly with their drummer who adds a classic metal vibe to the whole sound. Overall their sound has changed since I last knew them, but they have grown into a whole new beast that seems to be ready to take on the world!

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Best In Vancouver - Switch To Black


Switch To Black is a band that is hungry for glory. Aiming their sights on winning The Best In Vancouver competition this year, we hope to see them do well! We managed to have a quick chat with the band about their thoughts on the competition itself.

Hammer Records: For those who might not be familiar with your band, can you give a brief description of the sound of your band?
Switch To Black:  We play a strange breed of desert rock, metal, and punk.  Think of Kyuss, Iron Maiden, and The Dead Kennedy’s having a love child.

Hammer Records: Have you checked out past “Best In Vancouver” competitions? What do you think gives your band the edge on the competition?
Switch To Black:  Well since we’re all still underage we’ve never had a good chance to check out many bands and their sweet moves, but we always have a few tricks up our sleeves and the sleeves shall be rolled up on October 7th!!

Hammer Records: What do you think of the battle of the bands competitions? Do they help build a scene?
Switch To Black:  Our past two experiences in the Best in Vancouver competition have been awesome and we’ve met, and been inspired by, lots of other great bands.  We really hope these events get music fans excited for the opportunity to discover new bands and enjoy the live music experience.

Hammer Records: What do you want to say to the sponsors who are helping putting on the event?
Switch To Black:  THANK YOU!  Thank you for believing in live music, for giving local Vancouver bands the chance to perform at an amazing venue, and to get their name out there.  There’s so much art, and so many talented musicians in this city; and it’s because of you - the sponsors - that a few of them are able to connect, learn from each other, and show off Vancouver’s giant upcoming rock scene.

Hammer Records: Aside from playing the showcases, what is in the future for the band?
Switch To Black:  We’re getting into the studio again and hope to have a brand new single out before Christmas.

Hammer Records: Do you believe in promoting with handbills or other methods that aren’t online? Or do you think that online promotion is key?
Switch To Black:  Online promotion has been key since Zuckerberg birthed Facebook and it gets more and more important every time another social media platform comes along; but as for offline promoting, making friends and connections with bands, or just complete strangers, is definitely our favourite way of getting ourselves out there.

Hammer Records: What are your social media links and how can people find your music?
Switch To Black:  We have a website, along with all the usual social media links. You can find our debut EP, Nascent Noise on Spotify, BandCamp, iTunes and CDBaby!



Robyn & Ryleigh - BCCMA Nomination


Being sisters is hard enough growing up, but becoming a musical duo and taking on the world of Country music must be a crazy life! Having had great success and being signed to a major label, it looks like all their hard work is paying off. We had a quick chat with the duo about their BCCMA nomination.

Hammer Records: What does Country music mean to you?

Robyn&Ryleigh: We love all types of music but Country music is our roots. We grew up listening to Dolly Pardon, Dixie Chicks, Shania Twain. When we started playing and writing music it naturally came out country, although there is a bit of a rock/pop style to it as well.


Hammer Records: How does it feel to be nominated for an award? What do you think made you stand out?

Robyn&Ryleigh: It is a truly amazing feeling to have these nominations.  Being nominated shows us that the BC country music family believes in us and our music.  The feeling is incredible and motivates us to work even harder.   We like to think that the "rock" aspect in our style of country music stands out to people too. We like to include covers in our sets of male artists including Keith Urban, Brett Eldredge, ACDC and Trooper!


Hammer Records: What do you have coming up in the future for your fans?

Robyn&Ryleigh:  We have a new single coming out soon and we have a music video in the works that we're shooting in the Okanagan with some partners. We can't wait to tell you all about it.


Hammer Records: Do you think there are enough venues playing country music? What do you want to say to the fans of country music?

Robyn&Ryleigh: I think country music is really taking off again and getting more popular all the time. It's the fans of country that are making it so. There's more demand for it so It seems like more venues are booking country now. Country music fans are the best :)... it's a new generation for a whole new country.


Hammer Records: What other artists in the genre do you look up to?

Robyn&Ryleigh: Miranda Lambert, Dixie Chicks Keith Urban and most recently Chris Stapleton. Then there are a lot of up and coming new bands from right here in the West that are really making a name for themselves. The Chris Buck Band, our fellow Royalty Record label mates, are hitting it hard, they have an awesome sound! Washboard Union truly amazing band. Both these bands are also nominees at the BCCMA this year in some of the same categories too... our dukes are up haha just kidding, it's an honour to be in the same categories that's for sure.


Hammer Records: What advice do you have for country artists that are just starting out?

Robyn&Ryleigh: If music is in your heart and in your soul then never stop and don't look back. Surround yourself with people who believe in you and don't listen to the people who don't. The more time you put into it the better you'll get.


Hammer Records: What are your social media links and where can people find you?

Robyn&Ryleigh:
Website: http://www.robynandryleigh.com/

Facebook: https://m.facebook.com/robynandryleigh/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/robynandryleigh/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/robynandryleigh

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Best In Vancouver - Pretty Idiots


Bring the grooves, Pretty Idiots hopes to claim the prizes from this years Best In Vancouver competition. We had a quick chat with the band about their thoughts on the upcoming performance.

Hammer Records: For those who might not be familiar with your band, can you give a brief description of the sound of your band?
Pretty Idiots: It's loud. It's soulful and it's riddled with grunge angst. Mix any band from the sup pop days with John Mayer(like early John Mayer, not like Daughters singing John Mayer. A cross between those two might be too epic to handle). 
Hammer Records: Have you checked out past “Best In Vancouver” competitions? What do you think gives your band the edge on the competition?
Pretty Idiots: We've had a chance to check out a few, some great bands and we are really excited to hear some new music during this competition.
I really don't feel comfortable answering this part of the question. If I tell someone what my edge is and then they copy my edge.. then I have no edge and this whole question is irrelevant. ~C~
Hammer Records: What do you think of the battle of the bands competitions? Do they help build a scene?
Pretty Idiots: Of course. All PR is good PR and to have a company like Moozuka throwing their support behind it.  This will hopefully lead to a lot of great exposure that we otherwise may not of had the chance to get. ~B~
Hammer Records: What do you want to say to the sponsors who are helping putting on the event?
Pretty Idiots: 2 cups flour. 1/2 cup milk. 2 tsp baking soda. Pinch of salt. 1 egg and a thimble full of vanilla. Mix lightly until ingredients are together but not beaten into a straight liquid.  Warm a frying pan on medium heat, until water forms beads on it, when you use water to see if it's warm enough..but not a lot of water. Like sprinkle some water on it.  If it forms beads you're good to go.  1 cup batter per pancake.  Cook until bubbles have formed and burst, flip and cook until golden brown on both sides.  Serve with butter and your choice to flavored syrups. But I recommend maple syrup.  Keep it canadian. ~C~
Hammer Records: Aside from playing the showcases, what is in the future for the band?
Pretty Idiots: We will be playing at the Media club on October 28th, and hopefully the finals of this contest in November.  We are also headed to the studio soon to record a nice shiny new EP.
Hammer Records: Do you believe in promoting with handbills or other methods that aren’t online? Or do you think that online promotion is key?
Pretty Idiots: When we started out, it was all word of mouth, getting friends excited about seeing us play. As we started playing more shows, we needed a way to reach a larger audience.
We have found that in the social media world that we live in, people no longer pay attention to hand bills, posters on lamp posts or flashy signs. Invite someone to a concert and they ask for a Facebook invite.  Nothing is official till it's Facebook official.  So social media is a key to being able to remain in the public conscience. It also gives us a chance to interact with our fans on a far more personal level. ~B~
Hammer Records: What are your social media links and how can people find your music?
Pretty Idiots:
www.facebook.com/prettyidiots
www.soundcloud.com/pretty-idiots

Friday, September 16, 2016

Best In Vancouver - Event Horizon


This Burnaby band is going to rock the stage at Studio Records in an attempt to claim the top spot in the Best In Vancouver competition. Some fantastic prizes for the winner that would help launch this bands career! We chatted with the band about their upcoming show.

Hammer Records: For those who might not be familiar with your band, can you give a brief description of the sound of your band?
Event Horizon: We are the lovechildren of Foo Fighters + Jimmy Eat World + The Offspring. While we incorporate our influences, we add our own personal style and blend of rock and punk to the music. As a result we have developed a sound that includes catchy dueling vocals, interesting bass lines, intricate guitar riffs and driving drum beats.

Hammer Records: Have you checked out past “Best In Vancouver” competitions? What do you think gives your band the edge on the competition?
Event Horizon: While we haven't checked out past competitions, we think they are an extremely valuable tool for local live musicians. We think our creatively catchy music, energetic live shows and dedication to striving for improvement gives us a competitive edge.

Hammer Records: What do you think of the battle of the bands competitions? Do they help build a scene?
Event Horizon: Battle of the bands play an integral role in the fabric of any music scene and creates the drive to be the best of the competition. It gives many bands an opportunity to showcase their material and to watch and learn from the countless musicians and talents.

Hammer Records: What do you want to say to the sponsors who are helping putting on the event?
Event Horizon: Without the sponsors, none of these events would even begin to be possible. We are so thrilled to be given this chance to share a stage with amazing acts and we cannot thank the sponsors enough. We will relentlessly show our appreciation for this opportunity. We want to create a lasting symbiotic relationship that will continue to benefit both sides of the partnership.

Hammer Records: Aside from playing the showcases, what is in the future for the band?
Event Horizon: Space travel. Other than countless hours of sweaty practices and music creation, we hope to perform on many more Vancouver stages. We are excited to release new music soon to all of our social media outlets. When given the opportunity to expand out of Vancouver we would gladly be ready for that exciting new endeavour.

Hammer Records: Do you believe in promoting with handbills or other methods that aren’t online? Or do you think that online promotion is key?
Event Horizon: We are dedicated to any means of promoting, whether with handbills or pounding the pavement as we understand not everyone is using online methods. While online promotion is extremely important, it doesn't mean we should neglect other forms of getting our name out there. We are our brand and every interaction we have is an opportunity to spread the word and expand our fan base.

Hammer Records: What are your social media links and how can people find your music?
Event Horizon: Soundcloud: www.soundcloud.com/theeventthehorizon
Twitter: @eventhorizonvan
Facebook: www.facebook.com/theeventthehorizon

Best In Vancouver - Landmark 20


The Best In Vancouver competition is coming up in October this year and some fantastic bands on ready to throw down to try and win some epic prizes!


This North Vancouver band is setting their sights on winning the competition. Having just hit the studio to record an album they are eager to get things moving! We spoke with the band about their thoughts on the Best In Vancouver competition.


Hammer Records: For those who might not be familiar with your band, can you give a brief description of the sound of your band?

Landmark 20: We play mostly fun punk rock!

Hammer Records: Have you checked out past “Best In Vancouver” competitions? What do you think gives your band the edge on the competition?

Landmark 20We've only recently learned about the competition and it sounds like a lot of fun. We just like to have fun on stage and make sure the audience is having a good time and enjoying the music.

Hammer Records: What do you think of the battle of the bands competitions? Do they help build a scene?

Landmark 20We think that opportunities like these are a great a way to meet fellow musicians and get your's and other peoples music heard.

Hammer Records: What do you want to say to the sponsors who are helping putting on the event?Landmark 20 "Thank you for sponsoring this event, giving our band and others the opportunity to be heard, and supporting live music in general."


Hammer Records: Aside from playing the showcases, what is in the future for the band?

Landmark 20We have our debut album being released in the coming months, with a couple singles, the first of which being released in late October. We also plan on playing as many shows as possible and hopefully a tour next summer.

Hammer Records: Do you believe in promoting with handbills or other methods that aren’t online? Or do you think that online promotion is key?

Landmark 20 In this time of social media, online marketing is a key in getting yourself out there. But, the physical aspect of promotion (posters, flyers, etc.) is also key.

Hammer Records: What are your social media links and how can people find your music?

Landmark 20: Most of our info is shared through: Facebook: www.facebook.com/landmark20band



Our music from our first EP, Inconsistent, is on:

And finally, our YouTube channel which shows vlogs of us recording the album along with some shenanigans, and will have live and recorded music up on it once the album is out.