Winning The Loser’s Bracket: WOOD

winning-the-losers-bracket-wood-reviewWhenever you’re out with my grandma she will point out trees. I’m not sure when her fascination with them was born but it still remains a characteristic we love about her, and while I’m not sure Winning The Loser’s Bracket’s WOOD would be her choice musically – she’d sure appreciate all the tree references. She’s not so much a fan of punk music that’s been stripped down into an emo form that sits close to a heavy indie feel.

The passion behind tracks like “Palm” and “Douglass Fir” made them stand outs towards the end of my listening experience, but there was something about the honesty and being able to connect with “Willow” and “Ash” that made me smile through their sadness. One spoke of pushing away those you love and the other took a very serious turn. The best though was a tie between the acoustic ditty “Bradford Pear” that was about being stuck in the past, and “Locust.” That had a line “crying as I write this…” that basically sums up 80% of my writing. Fucking tears, why are you always present?

If you’re a fan of trees like my good ol’ grandma or just like when pop punk’s taken down and stirred with an emo stick – then Winning The Loser’s Bracket is just the band for you. So take what I said, run with it and then run and get WOOD, out now.

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Islander: Violence & Destruction

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There is a big life choice to make in the next couple of hours – stay at a job that makes me suicidal or quit and rough it for awhile? As I weigh the options and outcomes I have Islander’s Violence & Destruction blasting through my usual morning silence. Their hard rock style blended with hardcore elements and softer sides are enough to distract me from the reality I will soon face.

I was instantly taken back to my roots as soon as “Counterfeit” started playing. I could see bros in Affliction tees at a summer festival with Budlights in hand. The same images arose with “Side Effects of Youth” and “Criminals” featuring P.O.D.’s Sunny Sandoval. Those who like all that hardcore action – please, check those out. Those of us who like things a little tamer will be sitting with “Count Dracula,” “Cold Speak” and the very surprising “Kingdom.” I can honestly say I wasn’t expecting a slow one like that to pop up amidst the all the heavy laced rock, but it was appreciated.

Islander has managed to make a record that takes their full throttle energy to the forefront while still leaving room for the less abrasive aspects of their sound. They’re like the love child of Rage and Deftones. So if you think you can handle that, check out Violence & Destruction, out July 8 on Victory Records.

Top 10 Thursday: Love Songs

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I was going to countdown my favorite sexy songs, but then I couldn’t think of 10 so I went the romantic route and chose these ones…Because like a stereotypical girl, I’ve come up with the playlist for my wedding that will likely never happen, and the following are some of the ones that’ll be playing during my imaginary ceremony after saying “I do” to Patrick Fugit.

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