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FISHINABOX: Taiji Cove an Environmental Documentary performed in DUBSTEP

TAIJI COVE coverThis month has seen a massive amount of political music hitting the subculture scene across the pond. The most attention grabbing being TAIJI COVE due for release in February by Fishinabox Records.

This album blows the lid off the Japanese Dolphin and Whale-hunting scams and has become a hot ticket in a number of London protests against Japan. We got hold of a spokesman at FISHINABOX who admitted the Album had been leaked early to demonstrators and organisations working to bring an end to the Japanese Dolphin and Whale business.

The Album was heard in the very heart of London Oxford Street, China Town, Trafalgar Square being played by protesters on portable speakers by our MusicBiz reporter.

A large number of supporters on the Jan 17th Demonstration were seen wearing the Album logo’s, Maisie Williams who plays Arya Stark in the hit TV series Game of Thrones was spotted holding a FISHINABOX T Shirt in Trafalgar Square among other up and coming environmentalists and protesters.

TAIJI COVE VALANTINES DISC black CMYKWe caught up with Andie Handei Kumafaro, Horn and Keyboard player for the underground label in Trafalgar Square. He declined a full interview with the Music Biz over the Album Project but commented “The most part of what we do is really just about spreading the message. As a music collective we try to stay anonymous and in the shadows where we belong when compared to the issues at hand. let the album speak for itself, if you are looking for speakers then real credit on this should lie with those representing the organizing Charities and Ric O’Barry’s work, Will Travers for the Born Free Foundation and Dominic Dyer for Care for the Wild who have really clarified the issues here today”.

FISHINABOX had held up release of the Album commercially for over a month to allow it for unlimited download, sharing and use in Demonstration actions by protesters. The protests, from the FISHINABOX Website schedule, should complete within the next couple of weeks.

Look out for this mind blowing release from FISHINABOX Mid February, raw but definitely worth a look, The Music Biz rate’s this Album rating 8/10

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Being A Star – Between Diva Behavior And Imposter Syndrome

By Hilde Spille

I love watching the stars at this short, warm nights! For people, being a star means that you are in the spotlights, that others notice you, that you are famous. We admire you, you inspire us.

All the admiration does something to you and your ego. Your ego is blown up big way! Like a balloon. That’s how people with an imposter syndrome experience it. They still feel the same as they were before they became famous. They are anxious all the time, anxious that others might call them a fraud, that others deflate the balloon.

In the Dutch documentary-series “Fuck, I’m famous” I heard Jeroen Pauw, one of the major Dutch talk-show hosts, talking about his fear to be unmasked. When he’s walking on the street and people recognize him, he tries to avoid any contact by concentrating on his smartphone. He knows that others will think of him as arrogant, while in fact he’s very self-conscious.

The other side of the medal is, when you think that you have a right to all privileges that you get because of your fame. Often you don’t even know the name of the people surrounding you. You don’t seem to care, as long as they put you in the center of all attention. In psychology they call it ‘diva-behavior’.

Opera singer Bianca Castafiore (see picture) from the comic albums of Tintin is a great example for diva-behavior, as is Donald Trump. They have high demands for everyone around them, expecting that they have the right to be the center of everything and everyone around them.

Both ways of dealing with an inflated ego will lead to problems for yourself and your loved ones. How can you find the right balance when being a star, when standing in the spotlights? The ego leads to problems once your personality is defined by it.

But there is more, you are more than your ego. If other aspects of your personality can grow with your ego, the big ego doesn’t need to be a problem. Imagine your ego and the other aspects of your personality as rays of a star. If you want to become a real star, ego and talent is not enough. People who have managed to grow into a real star, are Barak Obama, David Bowie, Leonard Cohen, Annie Lennox.

Developing the other aspects while still supporting ego and talent is not easy, but I can help you.

The imposter-syndrome is one of the subjects in “The Music Managers Guide To Mental Health“, by MMF-UK and Music Support. Definitely worth reading, for everyone working in the music business!

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3 Keys To Breaking Into The Industry As A Broadway Musician

By Cherie Nelson

Fairbanks violinist Caitlin Warbelow wanted to grow up to be a scientist. Instead, she’s performing on Broadway in Tony-nominated “Come From Away,” a true story about the September 11 attacks. Warbelow earned degrees in violin performance, anthropology, cartography and urban planning before stumbling into success, which she says came to her unexpectedly. She was trying to make it as a musician in New York City when the opportunity came her way.

While opportunities like this may come by chance, building a foundation to increase your odds of success can at least be planned, as Warbelow’s prior violin education and musical experience illustrate. Here are some steps you can take to help you stand a better chance of breaking into being a musician for large theater productions on or off Broadway.

Get a Musical Degree

One step Warbelow took that laid a foundation for her success was earning her degree in violin performance. Playwright Garth Wingfield says that having a higher degree is one of the best steps you can take toward getting a foot in the door in the industry, reports While some musicians are self-taught or trained through private lessons, today’s Broadway musicians have at least a master’s degree. Getting a musical degree from a respected university shows that you’ve got the training and the commitment to succeed at your craft. It also gives you an opportunity to network with music professors, drama teachers and other professionals who can open the right doors for you.

Warbelow was smart to get other degrees besides her music degree. This looks good on a resume, showing that you’re a well-rounded person and making your personality stand out. It can also give you something to fall back on while you’re trying to break into the industry.

Join the Professional Musicians Union

Another step you should consider is joining the Associated Musicians of Greater New York Local 802, which is the world’s largest local professional musicians union. This will give you excellent benefits, including referrals for gigs and help with negotiating contracts and salaries.

However, once you join the union, you can’t take non-union gigs, so don’t take this step prematurely. Make sure you’ve got enough amateur experience to successfully handle professional gigs before joining. In New York, it can take seven to 10 years to build a network of connections before you’re ready to become a professional, according to conductor and musical director Brian Usifer.

Build a Network With Conductors and Musicians

Building a network within the industry is crucial to gaining access to the right opportunities. Follow the scene and get to know who’s who in the industry. Attend performances of important conductors and musicians, and ask musicians if you can sit as a guest in the pit and follow the book as they play. Use live events, phone calls and email to reach out to people in the industry.

The goal of this type of networking is to get opportunities to sub. However, it’s important when making introductions to approach as an observer and not as someone expecting to sub. If you show up consistently and demonstrate your interest in learning, you boost your chances that someone will ask you to sub when they need a replacement. Being available and prepared to sub and making the most of the opportunity when the chance comes your way is key to getting noticed by fellow musicians and conductors.

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Why Your Home Recording Sucks (And How to Fix It)

By Ben Jacklin

Recording at home is a viable option for musicians now. Whether you just want to throw together a quick demo or you want to record a whole album from your garage, you can get a relatively affordable setup and set up something resembling a makeshift studio at home. Just because you are a musician or singer doesn’t mean that you are an audio engineer, and there are many reasons your recording probably sucks.

  1. Not tuning. I wish this weren’t on the list but I hear it so often. Fix? Tune your instruments!
  2. Zero production. Just recording something isn’t enough, and it will need to be compressed, polished and edited. Fix? Record into proper software and use the editing and effects facilities on offer.
  3. Poor acoustics. Don’t record in your kitchen, it probably will sound awful. Fix? Buy, or even make some acoustic treatments.
  4. Not multi-tracking. A room microphone to record your whole band isn’t going to give you any control over volumes and effects. Fix? Track each instrument separately or at least with its own microphone.
  5. Bad microphones. You can get decent microphones without spending a fortune, but the $5 toy karaoke microphone you bought your niece isn’t going to cut it. Fix? Find a decent mic setup or even borrow one.
  6. Bad playing. It happens, guys. Sometimes you’ll listen back to the demo and think “well that sucks”. The song might not be that great, your technique might need some work. Fix? Practice, practice, practice.

Home recording done right is great, it liberates garage bands and lets you take more of the work in house, plus it means no waiting for studios and engineers to be available. Avoiding some very basic mistakes can go a long way to ensuring your recording is at least passable.

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SubMarine – Paradiso

By Maja C

Subtle roller from German producer SubMarine, forthcoming on Demand Records. Pre-order here.


Demand Records:

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Ulterior Motive launch their own label with a diverse new EP

By Maja C

After reaching a milestone 10 years as a duo Ulterior Motive are launching Guidance – their very own imprint which will see them experimenting with their most diverse soundscapes to date, and it’s all kicking off with a forward-thinking debut EP due for release on July 7.

Initially starting life in 2007 as an event, Guidance has gone full circle and will now be the home for their music, with the first EP also featuring the likes of Icicle and SP:MC. We caught up to find out more…

Yes fellas, thanks for joining us! Where have we caught you today?

Thanks for inviting us! We’re currently packing for Glastonbury…

Jealous! So, new label – new beginnings .. Massive congrats! Was launching your own imprint something you’d always planned to do?

Yeah it’s been on the cards for a long time, but like everything we wanted to wait for the right time. We took some time out after the album in order to let the dust settle and re-focus on what the next move was. Now seems like the right time to finally kick things off, we have the music we want to release and full autonomy…

What’s the core ethos behind the label?

We just want to release music we believe in!

It’s named after an event you guys ran in Bournemouth back in the mid 00’s, and those days were no doubt formative years for you as artists as well – will the label be an opportunity to pay homage to some of the sounds of those times?

Guidance will give us the opportunity to write what we want, and in some ways we have been taking things back to the 2008 sound but we’re not planning on making old-sounding tunes exclusively, The Wobbler featuring SP:MC is a good example of this.

The Wobbler is outrageous… What a tune. Was it inspired by anything in particular?

Thanks, this one was inspired by our Subtitles days and is the tune that sets the tone for the label.

Did you already have a beat ready for SP or was this made with him in mind?

He wanted to get involved from the first time we played it out. Initially it wasn’t made for a vocal but he really wanted to get on it and we’re good friends so set it up. He nailed it.

That he did! So will you be bringing the event back in conjunction with the imprint?

100%! We’re launching the event at The Clash Stage in Shangri-La at this year’s Glastonbury. There is also a Bristol night, London night, and some shows across Europe as well.

Label launch at Glastonbury… Doesn’t get much bigger than that does it?! Must be absolutely buzzing for that one! How did the prospect of a launch at Glasto fall into place anyways?

It’s crazy right?! It’s going to be a real celebration on Saturday! We’ve played in the area the last few years and the guys who run it offered us a curation opportunity, and we explained we’d be launching our label mid summer and they instantly offered us the launch… The team at Shangri-La are really cool and we respect what they stand for so it’s a real honour to be given such an opportunity!

Will you guys still be releasing on Metalheadz or are you taking this as an opportunity to have a period of complete artistic freedom?

We did a 12″ for Headz recently and we certainly aren’t cutting ties, but the label is our focus for now. If we write something that we feel fits Headz then we’ll still see if they want it. We are all family there and everyone respects the need for creative freedom.

Good to hear! Will you be inviting other artists to release on the label as well?

For sure, we’ve got tunes with DLR, DRS and Jubei already lined up, and we’ve spoken with others who want to get involved. However we aren’t rushing to have a whole roster of artists and releases, we just want to put out what feels right, when it feels right. We’ve started listening to demos from new producers as well, as we feel it’s important to help bring the new guys through.

Absolutely. Were the tracks made for the EP specifically or just tracks you felt deserved to see the light of day?

They were made for Guidance really.. When we decided to start the label we set aside everything we knew would fit. There are a few things that people have been playing that haven’t come out, this should explain why…

How did you go about deciding who you’d like to collab with?

We just write with friends who are on the same page socially and musically. There’s not much else to it.

Clap Ya really showcases your versatility as producers, is there a story behind this one?

Not really, we just tried something different and it worked. Sitting in front of the computer without an agenda often has the best results.

Love the raw feel of Anode with Icicle. Were you guys able to get into the studio together for this one?

Yeah, Icy came down for a for a couple days and we got a few ideas down. We’ve been friends for years so it’s always great to hang out.

Are plans in place for future EPs already? If so, have you thought about who you’d like to collab with?

The next EP is pretty much wrapped up. It will follow the same format as 001, and we’ll aim to put 4 EPs out before an album in late 2018.

Looking forward to it all! If you could give yourselves one piece of advice back when you were doing the Guidance nights, what would it be?

Don’t book a £2000 DJ the same night Dave Pearce and Erick Morillo are playing in a town with 5 clubs….

Haha you live and learn eh! There’s been a bit of a pattern with artists branching out and doing their own thing – do you think it’s important for aspiring artists to find a home at a label before they branch out into their own thing?

I think people should do what they want, there’s no rule book is there… It’s a good thing that people are setting up their own camps as it will mean more creative freedom, which will in turn lead to more inspiration across the scene.

Definitely. Final shouts?

Thanks to everyone who has helped us from the start of Guidance in ’07, right up to now!

Pre-order Guidance 001 here

Ulterior Motive:


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Reverend Matt West Signature Model

By Peter Hodgson


PRESS RELEASE: TOLEDO, OH (June 14, 2017) – Reverend Guitars and Matt West united to create a signature model just in time for Neck Deep’s Warped Tour jaunt. Based on the Jetstream platform that West loves, the guitar has a single Reverend CP90 pickup and a Wilkinson tremolo. It’s topped off with a reverse headstock and West’s wizard logo on the back. The model is available in Midnight Black and Powder Yellow, both with tortoise pickguards. The guitar will be released this Friday, June 16, 2017, in conjunction with West’s Warped Tour appearance.

Matt West is a member of the Welsh pop-punk band, Neck Deep, known for their intense and philosophical lyrics as much as their riff-driven music. The band is about to embark on the Vans Warped Tour for the entire US run. They will release their third studio album, The Peace and the Panic, on August 18, 2017.

On all Reverend Guitars, there is a Boneite nut and locking tuners, Reverend’s Bass Contour Control, and a dual-action truss rod – all for maximum performance. You can’t be different if you’re playing what everyone else is. Visit to start your journey towards being an individual.

mw_PYEL_front_print 2

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EarthQuaker Day 2017

By Peter Hodgson

EarthQuaker Devices

PRESS RELEASE: AKRON, Ohio — Ohio-based extra special effects pedal manufacturer EarthQuaker Devices will host the second-annual EarthQuaker Day festival at their downtown Akron facility (350 W. Bowery St.) on Saturday, August 5, 2017 from 1:00pm until 8:00pm.

The company, proudly based in Akron, Ohio since 2004, invites music lovers of all ages to converge upon their facility for a day of live music, product demonstrations, local business and art exhibitions, guided workshop tours, food from local favorites the Square Scullery and Nuevo, coffee by Kent’s Bent Tree Coffee Roasters, Dippin’ Dots ice cream, discounted EarthQuaker Devices B-stock, door prize giveaways, the PRS Guitars Riff Contest, fun, and games. The event is free and open to the public.

Each attendee will receive a raffle ticket upon entry for a chance to win one of several door prizes, including contributions from Moog Music, MakeNoise, the Nightlight Cinema, the Akron Symphony Orchestra, SIT Strings, the Akron Civic Theater, Summit Artspace, DeMarco School of Music, Good Life Tattoo, Tri-C Recording Arts & Technology, and more.

One of the 2016 highlights was the Riff Contest, which thanks to the generous sponsorship of the Maryland-based PRS Guitars, will receive a significant prize upgrade. This year’s winner will take home a PRS SE Custom 24 guitar valued at $759, in addition to EarthQuaker Devices’ Erupter and Ghost Echo v3 effects pedals, an EarthQuaker Devices swag pack, and a first place trophy. Contestants will receive 30 seconds to impress a panel of celebrity judges with their best riffs performed through an assortment of EarthQuaker Devices pedals. Participants must pre-register at check-in on the day of the event. Limited to 20 entries. Contest begins promptly at 5:15pm on the Lawn Stage. The 2017 celebrity judges include:

  • Juan Alderete – bassist in Halo Orbit, Deltron 3030, Racer X, the Mars Volta, Juliette Lewis
  • Nick Reinhart – guitarist in Tera Melos, Big Walnuts Yonder
  • Jamie Stillman – EarthQuaker Devices founder, president, and product designer, guitarist in Relaxer, the Party Of Helicopters, Drummer

EarthQuaker Day 2017 will feature original music and covers performed by EarthQuaker Devices employees, including:

  • Suffer Little Children (The Smiths tribute)
  • Crystal Visions (Fleetwood Mac tribute)
  • Obnox
  • Thelma & the Sleaze (Nashville, TN)
  • Fringe Candidate
  • EYE (Columbus, OH)

Effects pedal clinics and Q&A sessions include:

  • Marc Lee Shannon (Michael Stanley & the Resonators) – Using Pedals with Acoustic & Folk Instruments
  • Nick Reinhart – Guitar Clinic
  • Juan Alderete – Bass Clinic
  • Nick Reinhart / Juan Alderete / Jamie Stillman – Roundtable Discussion & Jam

Other notable additions to this year’s festival include a dunk tank, a cash grab machine, and, courtesy of 91.3 the Summit FM, EarthQuaker Day 2017 will be an official MusicAlive Donation Station where attendees may donate their new or gently-used instruments to help keep music in our schools and place instruments in the hands of Akron Public Schools students in need.

The official EarthQuaker Day 2017 after party begins at 8pm at Annabell’s Bar & Lounge (784 W. Market St.) and will feature performances by Black Sabath and This Moment In Black History.

To celebrate the occasion, participating retailers in the United States will offer EarthQuaker Devices products at a 15% discount on August 5, 2017.

EarthQuaker Devices is a manufacturer of hand built guitar effects pedals that has been based in Akron, Ohio since 2004. The company, which began as a one-man basement workshop operation is now an award-winning multimillion-dollar international phenomenon with clients ranging from bedroom rock gods to Grammy Award winners.

EarthQuaker Devices would like to thank each and every one of our sponsors from the bottom of our hearts. Your kindness and generosity makes us proud to be from Akron, Ohio, and we appreciate your contribution to this celebration of Northeast Ohio’s creativity, talent, and passion more than you will ever know. EarthQuaker Day 2017 sponsors include:

  • 91.3 the Summit FM
  • Rock & Recovery
  • MusicAlive
  • Audio-Technica
  • Circle Prime Manufacturing
  • Dr. Z Amplification
  • Hoppin’ Frog Brewery
  • Jakprints
  • PRS Guitars
  • Pro Guitar Shop
  • Tri-C Recording Arts & Technology
  • Chicago Music Exchange
  • The Devil Strip
  • Gotta Groove Records
  • Guitar Riot
  • Mr. Zub’s Deli
  • Mustard Seed Market & Café
  • Peoples Bank
  • Thursday’s Lounge
  • Saffron Patch Cleveland
  • 91.1 WRUW FM
  • Akron Art Museum
  • Akron Civic Theatre
  • Akron Symphony Orchestra
  • Apotheclaire
  • Bent Tree Coffee Roasters
  • CAD Audio
  • Decibel Pedalboards
  • DeMarco’s School of Music
  • Custom Audio Mutation
  • Annabell’s Bar & Lounge
  • Sweetwater
  • Warwick / Rockboard
  • Graham Fox & Co.
  • Human Unlimited
  • Make Noise
  • Moog Music
  • The Nightlight Cinema
  • Nuevo Modern Mexican & Tequila Bar
  • Birchwood & Pine
  • SIT Strings
  • Square Records
  • Three Anchors Tattoo
  • Good Life Tattoo
  • Towpath Credit Union
  • Wax Mage Records
  • The Guitar Department
  • Square Scullery Food Truck

What: EarthQuaker Day 2017
When: 1:00pm – 8:00pm, Saturday August 5, 2017
Where: EarthQuaker Devices HQ – 350 W. Bowery St. Akron, OH 44307
Cost: Free, open to the public

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Drunk Mums – ‘Ode To Death’

By Peter Hodgson

PRESS RELEASE: Melbourne rock outfit Drunk Mums return with a new single ‘Ode To Death’ The first single of their forthcoming EP Denim.

The track continues from their recent homage of hard rock and punk heard on their latest release Leather.Taking influence from Johnny Thunders and The Stooges the band takes a step back with this one, or so it seems, considering the lyrics have a pretty bleak undertone. Don’t let that fool you though, it is still something you could probably show ya parents and hell they’d probably like it too.

‘Ode To Death’ is true to the Drunk Mums rock, punk, garage sound which has been witnessed in previous tracks ‘Plastic’ and ‘Nanganator’. Following the release of ‘Ode To Death’ Drunk Mums will roll out a small Australian tour with some of their favourite bands in support.

The four piece, have built a reputation for their rowdy shows over the years, having played at many of the country’s finest festivals: Cherry Rock, Party in the Paddock, Paradise, Sounds of the Suburbs as well as with the likes of Jake Bugg, Dune Rats and Rich Ramone.

Catch ‘Ode To Death’ live in August when Drunk Mums take their Aussie garage rock on the road.

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NEXI Industries Phaser

By Peter Hodgson


PRESS RELEASE: Amsterdam, The Netherlands (June 20, 2017) — True to its name and purpose, the Phaser pedal for electric guitar has progressed through various musical phases, and across many stages, over the past few decades. Simple in delivery, NEXI Industries’ Phaser (PSR-01) represents the next stage for this effect pedal, with a plug-‘n-play design that makes compatibility a breeze—just like the effect’s signature sweeping and swooshing.

As a modulation, the phaser effect is created by the pedal’s signal processor that receives the input of the guitar and breaks it down into two parts—the first is kept dry, preserving the guitar’s original sound, while the second passes through various stages, creating the “sweeping” effect. NEXI’s analog Phaser is a throwback to the pedal’s earliest days, with a single knob that increases or decreases the speed of the peaks and troughs. Crank it up to “Fast” to create an aggressive swirl for heavy rock or metal, or turn it down to “Slow” for a lush sweep that’s ideal for ballads, reggae, or country.

NEXI’s Phaser was designed by boutique effect pedal creators, the self-declared “Vintage Analog Protection Squad,” who are committed to providing a unique tone without compromise. Like all NEXI pedals, the Phaser is true bypass and hybrid, meaning it can be used standalone with a 9V battery or plugged right into the external power supply of NEXI’s revolutionary pedal board. Aptly named “The Solution,” this heavy-duty board has a two-channel switch and three-step booster to satisfy every guitarist’s ego. It’s also equipped with a built-in tuner and power supply, two charging docks for tablet or smartphone, and covers that protect ports against dirt and beverage spills (splash-proof). Players are free to create those mind-bending swooshes and swirls, knowing that their board—and their Phaser pedal—are safe and sound.

Get a closer look and hear a demo at

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Cool Gear Alert: Keeley Tesla MKIII Fuzz

By Peter Hodgson


PRESS RELEASE: June 21, 2017 — Edmond, OK — Keeley Electronics is proud to announce the Tesla MKIII Fuzz, a vintage voiced MKIII Soviet Germanium fuzz with Keeley attention to detail.

With controls for FUZZ, TONE, and LEVEL the Tesla Fuzz makes it easy for players to dial in very wild amounts of fuzz. Modifications to the circuit allow for an increased high frequency not heard of before as well as ultra-low noise. Furthermore, design modifications have solved temperature problems that can affect vintage fuzz units. This particular bender design has a very vintage tone to it. Pure fuzz, no overdrive. Think late 1960’s and very unrefined.

“Our design team focused on building a MkIII style circuit with a stash of 104NU71 Soviet transistors that Keeley obtained. In this particular NPN Germanium design we focused on bringing out the most amazing attributes of the transistor. The 104NU71 has a super sticky, velcro tone and an incredibly unique bass response” said Robert Keeley, founder and chief engineer, Keeley Electronics. “To achieve this, we employed several technical innovations from our Time Machine Boost and Holy Fuzz designs. We also use techniques to nearly eliminate temperature coefficient problems in germanium designs.”

The Keeley Electronics Tesla MKIII will be released June 22nd at and at select dealers worldwide. Street Price is $149. Visit for more information about the full lineup of award-winning Keeley Electronics effects.


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