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Interviews: Oliver Ackermann (A Place to Bury Strangers)

Posted by mark on Wednesday, May 13, 2015 at 8:00 PM (EDT)
A Place to Bury Strangers Brooklyn’s A Place to Bury Strangers are the world’s loudest band. They just defeated Spinal Tap to take the title. Ok, I really have no idea if this is true on a decibel meter versus say, Metallica or something, but surely they are in contention. The noise rock band harnesses fuzz pedals, feedback and reverb in ways you’ve never heard before, thanks to guitarist/singer Oliver Ackermann’s own custom pedals. Combine that with Joy Division-style creepy melodic vocals and hammering, unrelenting drum beats and you’ve got APTBS.

Ackermann leads the trio on their fourth full-length Transifixiation, which came out earlier this spring. Staff reviewer, Punknews Podcast producer and Best Midwestern Podcast co-host Greg Simpson (aka greg0rb) sat down with Ackermann to discuss how they got to be “The World’s Loudest Band,” the new album, his custom pedal company Death By Audio and how dumb Pitchfork reviewers can be. Hit Read More for the interview.

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Interviews: Chris #2 (Anti-Flag)

Posted by johng on Wednesday, May 6, 2015 at 8:00 PM (EDT)
Anti-Flag Things are looking bleak. Innocent people are getting killed by the police and the police don’t seem to care. Civil rights are eroding. More and more, the dollar controls elections. The guys in Anti-Flag are bummed out about it.

For 27 years, the band has been attacking political and social injustice and things just don’t seem to be getting better. So, perhaps paradoxically, on their upcoming album, American Spring (out May 26) the band is rejuvenated and charged to fight back.

Equally surprising is just how introspective this album is. In fact, the band’s own Chris #2 had a strong hand in crating the album. He tapped into his own personal tragedies, such as the end of a 17 year relationship and the tragic murder of his sister. These emotions were used as conduits to comment on national issues of police injustice, income inequality, and the justice system. Features editor John Gentile spoke to Chris #2 about the new album and it's genesis. You can read the interview below.

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Interviews: Aaron Rev (Success)

Contributed by hesitationstation. Posted by britt on Monday, April 27, 2015 at 8:00 PM (EDT)
Success Seattle, Washington's Success is a positive voice in a punk scene often saturated with perpetual negativity and dishonest presentation. They play upbeat, catchy pop-punk with an optimistic message always grounded in reality. They released their Red Scare debut, Radio Recovery, on March 24, 2015, and kicked off a tour with Masked Intruder that culminates in an appearance at Punk Rock Bowling (Yo, did you hear? Punknews is a sponsor!). Punknews interviewer Alex Meylink had a chance to talk with singer/guitarist Aaron Rev about the band's origins, the new album and the road to Red Scare.

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Interviews: Sean Hart and Robert Selander (Tartar Control)

Contributed by DesertBurst92. Posted by johng on Thursday, April 23, 2015 at 8:00 PM (EDT)
Tartar Control The Mormon hardcore punk trio Tartar Control, composed of Sean Hart, Robert Selander and Robot, have been spreading the good word of The Lord and the great benefits of good oral hygiene to the Southern California punk rock scene since they self-released their first album, Holy Crap!, in 2011.

For those of you who are new to Tartar Control, just know that they are a very visual band. The “Jesus Is Love” video will give you what you need to know. And then if you can see them live, do it (especially is you plan on attending Punk Rock Bowling)! Just check out their their full live sets online.

Four years after Tartar Control released Holy Crap! , they finally self-released a new album called We Forgive You earlier this month. I, Ricky Frankel, reviewer, podcast panelist and occasional interviewer drove down to The Doll Hut in Anaheim, California, where the “Jesus Is Love” music video was filmed, coincidentally, to interview Sean and Robert outside of the sketchy and potentially haunted hotel that was near the venue before they performed that night. Just know that I was pretty much laughing during the whole interview, but I spared you all from having to read a ton of “hahahas” throughout it.

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Interviews: Al Barr (Dropkick Murphys) - Punk Rock Bowling Exclusive

Posted by armando on Thursday, April 16, 2015 at 8:00 PM (EDT)
Dropkick Murphys The Dropkick Murphys have been playing together for close to 20 years and in that time they've gone from humble beginnings to becoming a massively successful band in the mainstream. As their 20th anniversary approaches the band will be playing their first album, Do or Die, in it's entirety at this year's Punk Rock Bowling Festival.

With a few weeks before the festival (which we're sponsoring!), we were able to score an interview with Dropkick's lead singer Al Barr. Punknews' Contributing Editor and Interviewer Mondo Olivas talked to him about the bands' history with the music festival, why they love playing the event year after year, and what separates Punk Rock Bowling from other festivals.

You can click Read More for the interview.

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Interviews: James Alex (Beach Slang)

Posted by johng on Tuesday, March 24, 2015 at 8:00 PM (EDT)
Beach Slang There's a good reason you've been hearing about Beach Slang as much as you may have: because they're really fucking good. The Philadelphia, Pennsylvania-derived quartet play songs with an instant, warm air of familiarity, without sticking too derivatively to its influences. Obviously, these guys have played in bands those young and old to the PA punk scenes might be familiar with, from '90s veterans Weston to more recent acts like NONA, Ex Friends and Crybaby. But they've come together here and found quick success with a pair of immediately gratifying, well-received EPs released last year; thankfully, they already have a full-length mapped out to record soon and release not long thereafter for long-running indie Polyvinyl.

Last weekend, towards the end of a month-long tour directly supporting Cursive, who were celebrating their beloved 2003 album The Ugly Organ, Brian Shultz was able to chat with vocalist/guitarist James Alex on a rainy Saturday afternoon in Cambridge, Massachusetts, shortly after the band plowed through a quick headlining gig at at a local gastropub.

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Interviews: The war on the War On Women

Posted by johng on Thursday, March 19, 2015 at 8:00 PM (EDT)
War On Women You probably know the band War On Women. They just released the ripping War On Women album. They directly address women’s rights, harassment, abortion and nasty people on the Internet.

With such pressing topics, the band doesn’t waste time with metaphors or ambiguous introspection. Abortion law is messed up in the USA and the band lets you know. Now is not the time for reserved reflection. It’s time for action.

But, the band’s willingness to say exactly what’s on its mind has made it a lightning rod of controversy. A lot of people love the band’s Crass-like attack… and a lot of people hate them because…. Well, no one can seem to say for sure. But, no doubt, the band has received a pretty constant blast of hate via Internet comments and have also been heckled on stage. (They’ve gotten lots of love, too.)

Because this band has ignited such a firestorm, Punknews’ John Gentile has written a piece contemplating the group, followed up by an interview with vocalist Shawna Potter. You can read it below.

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Interviews: Roger Miret (Agnostic Front)

Posted by johng on Thursday, March 12, 2015 at 8:00 PM (EDT)
Agnostic Front When I call Roger Miret (vocalist of Agnostic Front, leader of the Disasters, hardcore legend), he’s about to get on a school bus to go on a field trip with his kid’s class. That’s right, Mr. Victim in Pain, Mr. CBGB, Mr. Neck Tattoo is now a chaperone.

But, that’s not to say Miret has lightened up. Just by speaking to him, I can tell that were I to piss him off, he could probably tear off my ass and then hand it back to me. He’s a tough dude. But, as he crosses five decades, it seems that in addition to being one of the most important guys in one of the world’s most important hardcore bands, he’s also become a bit of a philosopher.

You see, on Agnostic Front’s upcoming album, The American Dream Died (out April 4 on Nuclear Blast), Miret contemplates how civil rights have eroded, how the police abuse their privileges and how being a Cuban immigrant has affected his place in this world. With that in mind, I called up Miret to talk about coming to America, his punk rock history and the new LP.

You can click read more to read John Gentile’s interview with Miret.

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Interviews: Billy Jeans (Mean Jeans)

Posted by adame on Wednesday, March 11, 2015 at 8:00 PM (EDT)
Mean Jeans You can finally stop hunting for those rare, out-of-print Mean Jeans 7-inches. That’s because the Portland party punks having compiled all of those tracks in the form of Singles, a 20-track collection of early releases, compilation songs and other bits and pieces, which drops on Dirtnap Records on March 21, 2015.

And that’s not all the band has on the agenda " they’re also headed to Europe this spring and are in the process of putting the finishing touches on a brand new album that we’ll hopefully hear before the end of the year. With so much going on, Punknews editor Adam Eisenberg caught up with frontman Billy Jeans to discuss the new singles collection, the band’s humble beginnings and Mean Jeans’ rocky professional relationship with Jägermeister.



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Interviews: Scott Sturgeon (Leftover Crack)

Posted by johng on Tuesday, March 10, 2015 at 8:00 PM (EDT)
Leftover Crack Leftover Crack's second LP, Fuck World Trade, is one of those rare records that is both timely and timeless. When it was released in 2004, it commented directly on the 9/11 tragedy and the War on Terrorism. But now, 14 years removed from the tragedy depicted on the cover, the record doesn't seem anchored to a specific time or place, but rather, seems to be a commentary on global power structures as a whole (shorthand -- mega-rich guys cause war for profit).

But despite the album's bleak overtones, the band was able to slip in ghoulish humor between the horrors. The band, quite deftly, abutted N.W.A. references against commentary on privately run prisons, songs about getting wasted were snapped next to the timeless tale of getting kicked out of the house by your parents. And of course, the entire concept of a satanic, crust-influenced, crack smoking band is pretty hilarious (and clever).

Because Fat Wreck Chords just re-released the album, Punknews' John Gentile and Ricky Frankel spoke to LoC frontman Scott Sturgeon about Fuck World Trade's significance, tacos and the upcoming LP.

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Interviews: Derek Grant(Alkaline Trio/The Suicide Machines)

Posted by armando on Thursday, March 5, 2015 at 8:00 PM (EST)
Derek Grant Derek Grant has been an essential member of the punk rock community for over 20 years being behind the drum kit for Alkaline Trio since 2001 as well as being involved with the likes of The Suicide Machines, The Vandals and Face to Face. Earlier this year Derek released his first solo album on Red Scare and played a short run of dates in support of the full length.

With his warm up out of the way Derek is ready to take on the world as he embarks on what looks to be his busiest year yet. He currently has dates set with Alkaline Trio, The Suicide Machines and The Vandals, not to mention more solo dates in the works. With such a stacked year ahead of him we were lucky enough to score a chat with the man. Derek was willing to talk about anything and everything we could throw at him. You can read our interview after the jump.

You can click Read More for the details.

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