Going to Alestorm's Pirate Fest Was the Most Pirate Thing You Could've Done Last Night

Categories: Last Night

Eric Hood
If a pirate's life is the life for you, then last night you should've found your way to the back of an abandoned business park to swig rum, raise your cutlass, and bang your head with the small army of metalheads at this year's Pirate Fest. Yes, Pirate Fest--a tour in celebration of all things "Arrr" came to The Music Hall in Anaheim. Headlined by Scottish pirate metal masters, Alestorm, the show brought a deluge bands including The Dread Crew of Oddwood, the 8-bit dance metal of Rainbowdragoneyes and the relentless thrash of Concrete Sledge.

Considering that the tour bus of the fest's world-renowned headliners looked like the size of a pirate ship next to the side of the building they were playing in, it definitely appeared these guys were not fucking around on this US excursion. And seeing them on an intimate stage with the sights and sound (and smells) of a pirate gathering was a great way to end the week. And let's face it, any opportunity to throw on an eyepatch and throw down at a metal show is an opportunity we're willing to take.

More »

Motion City Soundtrack Delivers Pop Punk Nostalgia in Anaheim

Taylor Morgan
Motion City Soundtrack
House of Blues Anaheim

Crowds rushed into Anaheim's House of Blues last night to see punk-pop legends Motion City Soundtrack. Nostalgic about their teenage angst, couples sang along to Brand New and All-American Rejects tracks playing throughout the venue speakers before showtime. Huntington Beach based band Hellogoodbye took the stage and performed a set of their favorite tracks including a rendition of "Here (In Your Arms)," a mix of Nintendo bleeps and synthesized rock, as a guy in the audience spanked his girlfriends butt to the beat.

Finally, for the main event, Justin Pierre (lead vocals, guitar) Joshua Cain (guitar), Claudio Rivera (drums), Jesse Johnson (moog aka synthesizer) and Matthew Taylor (base) took the stage to perform their second album, 2005's Commit This To Memory. A decade ago, it became the band's breakthrough album, selling over 285,000 copies and peaking at number two on Independent Albums chart. Most importantly it was the soundtrack of millennial youth, reminiscent of breakups, making out, goofing off, and growing up.

More »

The Game - The Observatory - January 29, 2015

Categories: Last Night

Nick Nuk'em
The Game
The Observatory

Despite not having a single on the Billboard rap charts since 2012, 35 year-old Jayceon Taylor, aka The Game, pulled a sold-out show at the Observatory last night, commemorating the 10th anniversary of his double platinum debut, The Documentary.

Less than an hour before the latest edition of his self-exploiting Instagram campaign, #FineNiggaFridays, where he posts a picture of his ripped and tattooed figure, Game plugged the hashtag to the amusement of the ladies in attendance. Once known simply as a gangsta rapper, responsible for a slew of feuds that burned bridges across the rap community, the rapper has assumed the role of a semi sex symbol, among other roles that give his fans reasons to love that extend beyond his music.

More »

Bad Suns - The Observatory - January 25, 2015

By:Taylor Morgan
Bad Suns
The Observatory

L.A. band Bad Suns received an unprecedented amounts of "I love you" screams, immediately following an intense lyrical devotion to "Transpose" the groups first song of the night at the Observatory.

Christo Bowman (vocals), Miles Morris (drums), Ray Libby (guitar) and Gavin Bennett (bass), released their debut album Language & Perspective last July and are quickly elevating their profile in the indie rock scene. Their bouncy beats and hook heavy chorus' recently landed them a performance slot on Conan O'Brien as well as three sold out shows, in Southern California, to kick off their 2015 tour.

More »

Hail Mary Mallon - Constellation Room - January 10, 2015

By: Taylor Morgan

Aesop Rock & Rob Sonic are Hail Mary Mallon
The Constellation Room

Underground hip-hop lovers stood shoulder to shoulder Saturday night at The Constellation Room for supergroup, Hail Mary Mallon. Emcee/producers Aesop Rock and Rob Sonic hit the stage and immediately began to spit rhymes like ear candy as DJ Abilities spun the instrumental beat creating an art form in-and-of-itself. "Mother fuckers, what's good?" Aesop screamed into the mic in the midst of performing their first track "Jonathan" off their 2014 album Bestiary.

The group has been making music since 2009 with a name that pays homage to Typhoid Mary, the asymptomatic carrier of typhoid fever who infected over 50 people in NYC during the 1900s. With a seamless transition into their second track, "Krill," a feeling of an underground hip-hop scene began to infect the room. Aesop wore a yellow T-shirt with a black bat centered across the chest reading, "Zero Friend." Tattoos covered his arms that flailed to the beat as he moved his head back and forth in an ostrich like motion.

More »

Phil Shane Embodies Elvis at Azteca

Ryan Ritchie

Phil Shane
Azteca Mexican Restaurant
Jan. 4, 2015

Last night I finally heard the song "Blurred Lines." Thankfully, it was the Phil Shane version.

The Robin Thicke tune was requested towards the end of the singer's four-hour set at Azteca Mexican Restaurant in Garden Grove by a blonde woman. I know the song was requested by her because I heard her ask for this particular number. And I could hear her because my brother and I (the two youngest people in the capacity-filled room once two young children left halfway through the show) sat on a bench behind the stage because all of the dining tables were occupied by the time we got there at 6:45, which is a long-winded way of saying Phil Shane fans arrive on time, they come in droves and they don't leave early.

I assumed he wouldn't know the song because, hell, I don't know it and I'm 35 years old. But he did because he's Phil Shane and Phil Shane knows everything. And after almost losing him to Nashville back in 2013, we're glad to see him in OC just a few days after his birthday (which is of course, New Year's Day).

More »

ScHoolboy Q - The Observatory - December 16, 2014

By: Taylor Morgan
ScHoolboy Q
The Observatory

Class was definitely in session last night at the Observatory when West Coast gangster rap's crowned prince ScHoolboy Q took the stage for a packed crowd in Santa Ana. The LA rapper, whose album Oxymoron debuted at #1 on Billboard 200 album charts last March, strutted out from the back of a smoky stage just before 11 p.m. Appropriately, he started his set with the gun-clapping track "Gangsta," jumping up and down across the stage in his Toronto Maple Leafs Jersey with 'Kessel' monogramed across the back.

Blunts were consumed as the audience belted "crush a bit, little bit, roll it up, take a hit". Q held the mic in his right hand, leaning forward towards the audience and asked, "How many of you got Oxymoron in here?" Taken back by the response he noted, "I never thought I would be rapping. I never thought I would make an album and people would love it. I never thought my ugly, finger nail ass, would be up here." The crowd went wild and he shouted, "let's get to some Oxymoron!"

More »

Allah-Las - The Observatory - December 13, 2014

Thumbnail image for AllahLas.jpg
Taylor Morgan
The Observatory

A girl with a seahorse ear cuff and silk mushroom scarf around her neck held her tall boy cerveza in the air screaming as the Allah-Las assumed their positions onstage. "We locked eyes at an underground bar in Venice when I saw them play last! They're soo dreamy," a fan shared with her friend in the crowd of the band's Constellation Room show on Saturday. Longhaired surfer boys sporting their dad's hand-me-down t-shirts nodded in agreement. A fan who leaned up against the bar added, "the Allah-Las played at my wedding at the Natural History Museum!"

Spencer Dunham (bass), Matthew Correia (percussion), Pedrum Siadatian (lead guitar) and Miles Michaud (vocals + guitar) performed some of their best tunes over the weekend, including favorites like "No Werewolf", "Busman's Holiday", "Follow You Down", "Buffalo Nickel," "No Voodoo," and "Da Vita Voz." They sipped whiskey out of clear plastic cups between songs and the smell of cigarettes and marijuana covered the clothes of audience members. The band moved on to perform, "Calm Me Down" a Human Expression cover that had the crowd moshing for no apparent reason, "Tell Me (What's On Your Mind)" featuring tambourines and the melodica (as known as the pianica or blow-organ) and "Better Than Mine."

More »

Ms. Lauryn Hill - The Observatory - November 19th, 2014

Taylor Morgan
Ms. Lauryn Hill
The Observatory

A single file sea of people stood outside The Observatory waiting for Lauryn Hill last night. The line that wrapped from the front entrance, through the parking lot and down the side of Harbor Blvd. However, the fans didn't seem impatient as they shuffled toward the venue to see the 8-time Grammy winner, despite the fact some of them had waited hours and Hill wouldn't even take the stage until about 10 p.m.

The night started off with a major boost of island energy courtesy of opener Daniel Bambaata Marley, son of Ziggy Marley and grandson of Bob Marley.Talk about someone who genuinely is passionate about performing. Marley mixed reggae and rock with classical components throughout and his movement amongst the stage had hands swaying with the beat and new and old fans enthralled.

More »

Death From Above 1979- The Observatory- November 14th, 2014

Taylor Morgan
Death From Above 1979
The Observatory

Tonight a band that represents chaos in the best possible way takes the stage at The Observatory after a decade apart. They've toured with Nine Inch Nails and Queens of the Stone Age with their hard hitting drums, noisy bass and epic screams creating dance-punk madness and tonight is no different. Singer/drummer Sebastian Grainger and bassist/synth player Jesse Keeler take the stage as some random dude in the audience screams "Bring them out! Bring them out!" A few fans throughout the crowd tighten up the bandanas on their heads and punk rock princesses with dark lipstick scream "I love you".

The Toronto-based duo begins and the sold out venue goes mental, drinks pour out of hands spewing in the air towards body guards and photographers near the stage. An empty Modelo can get's tossed towards the feet of Keller, in all black, who jolts his head-backwards ridding his face of his already sweaty bangs covering his eyes. They perform "Right On, Frankenstein!" off their two month old album The Physical World - the product of a rekindled friendship that had to undergo six years of separation for artistic differences. Next up is "Blood On Our Hands," "Cheap Talk" and an all-time cult-favorite "You're A Woman, I'm A Machine."

More »