The Rock Report keeps rock fans posted on the latest news. Check it out every Friday.
Big Change for Against Me! Singer
In the biggest news of the week, Tom Gabel, the frontman for the punk group Against Me!, spoke to Rolling Stone about his decision to live as a woman. Gabel will take hormones, undergo electrolysis treatments and take the name Laura Jane Grace. Also, the 31-year-old singer said he will remain married to his wife, Heather.
"I'm going to have embarrassing moments and that won't be fun,” Gabel told Rolling Stone. “But that's part of what talking to you is about -- hoping people will understand, and hoping they'll be fairly kind."
The Hives Bust Out “Go Right Ahead”
Sweden’s favorite sons, The Hives, have unveiled their video for “Go Right Ahead,” the leadoff single to their new album “Lex Hives,” which is due out June 5. The Tuxedo-clad quintet rock their top hats as they enter a rehearsal space, perform the song as only The Hives could -- with guitar cam -- and then in a very distinguished manner, make their exit. Check the video out below.
The Sidekicks See the Writing on the Wall
The Sidekicks are currently promoting their recently-released third studio album, “Awkward Breeds.” Taking on more of an indie-rock vibe, the spirited group’s theme focuses on the pressure to achieve goals and how that mindset can cause people to neglect other areas of their lives.
Those sentiments are also echoed in their latest music video, “Baby, Baby,” whose treatment might have been inspired by graffiti in public restrooms.
“It's about those outside pressures and placing a blank canvas within this context,” front man Steve Ciolek told us. “Along with that, I just wanted to see what people would choose to say if given the opportunity to write something. I think I got that idea just from seeing all the trash that gets written on bathroom stalls.”
Ciolek hopes that people, when they listen to the new album, will gain “some sense of a connecting thread with people, something they can relate to. I always experience my favorite records that way where I get a feeling that it’s okay to be the way I am.”
CBGB’s Revived as, Yes, a Festival
CBGB’s, the venerable New York City rock club, might have shuttered in 2006, but its spirit is returning to Gotham. A group of investors recently bought the legendary punk rock club’s assets, and according to The New York Times will launch the inaugural CBGB Festival. The four-day event, set for July 5-8, will feature more than 300 bands at 28 different locations in Manhattan and Brooklyn with a concert at Central Park’s SummerStage on July 7.
There will also be 30 rock films and documentaries shown over the course of two days, a “Spirits Fest” focused on the best whiskeys from small distillers, and conferences featuring label execs, songwriters, journalists, managers and more. If all goes well, CBGB’s club might re-open somewhere in East Village. Check the clip below to see Green Day perform at CBGB’s back in the day.
Royal Thunder Storm Into Summer
Royal Thunder, the soulful metal act from Atlanta, is ready to catch lightning in a bottle. The group, known for its bluesy guitars and lead singer Miny Parsonz’s soaring vocals, will release their debut album “CVI” on May 22 on Relapse Records. Just a few weeks later, they’ll be on tour opening for Valient Thorr and Holy Grail. The trek kicks off June 10 at Strange Matter in Richmond, Virginia, and concludes July 19 at the Chop Shop in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Peep their single “Whispering World” below.
For more from Bear Frazer, follow him on Twitter.
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