DAYS OF THE DEAD was a gory good time!!! → READ MORE


Seven Sense Festival was hot hot HOT! → READ MORE


Tender Mercy, Soft Self Portraits, Dawg Yawp,
and Kate Wakefield at Kaiju 8/13! → READ MORE

Friday, September 30, 2016

INTERVIEW: Daniel Kubinski talks Punk Rock, The Crosses, & Zombie Movies!

Pictured above: Dan Kubinski screams at a digital sun!
You might recognize the name Dan Kubinski as the voice behind seminal hardcore punk band Die Kruezen, and you might be right. Kubinski was part of the scene that helped launch the Touch and Go label back in the early 80's, and has been going strong ever since in bands like Boy Dirt Car, Fuckface, and Decapitado!, to name a few. At the moment, you can catch Kubinski playing guitar in GoGoSlow and singing with The Crosses, a tribute band to the first Die Kreuzen album! You can listen to a live Crosses set below and catch them tonight at The New Vintage, alongside the mighty Black God and the always awesome Satellite Twin, releasing a cassingle of their own no less! We caught up with Kubinski to ask about his career, nostalgia, and Y2K!

Never Nervous: What got you into music? Was it in your household or did you pick it up somewhere else?

Dan Kubinski: My family is/was very musical. My father had his own band when he was in high school and into college. Three guys playing guitar and singing harmonies and after a while they added a female singer. They even won a "talent contest" and were able to travel to NYC with a bunch of other winners and were supposed to appear on television on the Ted Mack Talent Show. My dad told me that the power went out that night in NYC though, so they never appeared, but as teenagers they had a great time hanging out in Time Square and taking it all in.

My grandmother (fathers mother) told me that her three brothers, father and mother would sit around every night and play acoustic guitars, accordions and sing. That was their entertainment before they bought a radio and well before television of course! Hey, and no internet yet either! So yes, music and performing is most definitely in my blood!

NN: Specifically, how did you get into punk rock? What was the scene like when you started and how has it evolved since?

DK: Back in the mid 1970s' I started to hear about this new music they were calling Punk Rock on both television (a news short showing people dressed all crazy in London England and The Sex Pistols playing) my parent's subscription to Time Magazine had an article on the Queens Jubilee that also talked about Punk Rock (God Save the Queen, right!) and it also started to appear in the music magazines I bought from the grocery store, like Creem Magazine, Trouser Press and a few others. It looked a bit scary at first, dirty and out of control.... I immediately liked what I was seeing, reading and hearing and had to find out more!

"It looked a bit scary at first, dirty and out of control.... I immediately liked what I was seeing, reading and hearing and had to find out more!"

I also had a friend, Don Bush or as we called him "Toothpaste" who was a year or two older than me and he had a few records like The Stooges, the first Clash LP as an import and of course other records like the MC5 that simply blew my mind. He was also a guitar player, so he taught me my first few chords on guitar. He came home from a family trip to Europe one summer in the late '70s with some more cool LPs, The Saints, The Damned and some others. All this new music took us out and away from our KISS and Aerosmith records and we were hungry for more.

Eventually some friends of mine started a band and they needed a singer. Since I didn't have a guitar or bass at that point I said that I'd be the singer. We covered a bunch of stuff, 999, the Clash, old school stuff like The Wanderer, which we punked up a bit, The Undertones, a ton of Ramones covers and Sex Pistols songs too. Somewhere along the way through all these musical kids I met Brian Egeness and the very early Die Kreuzen was born, although we were called "The Stellas" for a few years. But that's about the time we started writing original material. I was probably 16 or so.

NN: How did Die Kreuzen form? How did it change over time?

DK: Brian and I moved to Milwaukee, WI one hot summer to be with our friends who also had a band and were doing gigs. You only had to be 18 years old to be in the bars in Wisconsin so it seemed like a logical thing to do, get up there and jam because we can! We went through a few drummers until Erik Tunison joined and Erik was able to get his high school buddy Keith Brammer over to jam with us when we suddenly needed a new bassist. We did a few more shows as The Stellas but felt that a change in attitude and a new moniker was in order as we were now writing all of our own songs and we wanted to do more than get drunk and fuck shit up when we played live.

NN: How did you hook up with Touch and Go? That label seems amazing. What was it like working with them?

DK: Touch and Go is the only label that matters! There simply isn't or couldn't have been a better label for us, a perfect pairing! Die Kreuzen opened for the Necros once and Corey Rusk really enjoyed what we were doing so he offered to put out an LP for us on his new label. Touch and Go had done a few 7" records but Corey was about to take over the label and take it in a entirely new direction, he was very very into doing those early records, it was a very exciting time.

"Touch and Go is the only label that matters!"

NN: Relative to that, how and why did the band end?

DK: Brian and I had been making music together since high school and Die Kreuzen had been a band for 11+ years when we finally hit a wall in 1992. The Hardcore scene was all but dead and truthfully we didn't fit the "Hardcore" label anymore. I think we still to this day consider ourselves a punk band because of our attitude and the way we handled our music, but the rest of the music world was on to other things and sooner or later so were we all.

Keith had other bands, I played in other bands and somehow we all started losing interest in Die Kreuzen. Brian was the one to break away and be unsatisfied with the way things were going and unfortunately we split the band up a week or two before we had an offer from Atlantic records. It was a brutal ending for us and it still hurts to this day, but I am so glad that we are all friends and that we are happy we did what we did, and we most definitely had a blast!

NN: Having played a variety of roles on stage over the years (guitar, bass, vocals), what do you prefer and why? Do you like just singing or just playing an instrument? Do you like doing both? What are the pros and cons of each?

DK: Each instrument has its own role to play and I enjoy just about all of them the same. Being a singer is very "freeform" while playing guitar is much more precise. I loved playing bass with Decapitado! and felt that playing bass was what I was most interested in. Its really cool to lock in with a good drummer and lay a foundation down for everyone else to skate over the top of.

I currently play guitar in my band GoGoSlow which is a more or less traditional punk band, not a hardcore band. More like the Ramones, Pistols and Damned kind of writing. I love GGS and its so much fun to play with those guys all of whom I've known for well over 25 years. It's very comfortable and we are very creative together and I enjoy that atmosphere intensely! Plus the guitar is a very open ended instrument, I learn something new almost every day and for sure when I go see a band play live.

We just learned Bodies by the Sex Pistols the other day and its so much fun to see how Steve Jones played early on and its a blast to play songs from my youth. GGS has a 5 song CD out and a 7" single. On the B-Side of the 7" we cover Flame-Thrower Love by the Dead Boys!

NN: What responsibility do you have as a vocalist in representing your band?

DK: Well, I think people always look at the singer as a leader of the band, wether or not the singer actually is or isn't. So you have to be the guy or gal that does the talking live and has to be the bridge somewhat between the audience and the band. Sometimes you have to be a bit of a politician when there is trouble within the audience, a fight or maybe someone gets hurt and the situation needs someone to say "Hey man, you guys need to chill for a bit." It varies constantly from gig to gig, but its generally damn fun to have a mic and be able to come over the speakers loud and clear, especially if you have a heckler!

NN: For that matter, what responsibility –if any- does a band have to an audience and vice versa?

DK: I can't think of a "responsibility" that a band would have towards an audience, in fact it might be the other way around. I think people in the audience, and this is how I see myself when I'm in the audience, is to have an open mind, be prepared for something new and that maybe you didn't expect.

"I think people in the audience, and this is how I see myself when I'm in the audience, is to have an open mind, be prepared for something new and that maybe you didn't expect."

I saw the Clash on their London Calling tour, actually they were calling it the "Pearl Harbor Tour." London Calling had just come out an an import here in the states and I didn't have a copy of it yet. My friends and I drove to Chicago to the Aragon Ballroom and opening the show was Bo Didley, he was fucking awesome, blew my mind! Then The Undertones came on, oh my god they were so good, so young and so damn snotty. They just ripped through their set, Fergal was so skinny, sweaty and no shirt on with his foot up on the monitor cranking out those incredible vocals, they were amazing!

Then when the Clash finally played we danced and pogoed like crazy, they were my heros at the time. At one point deep into the set they put down their electric guitars and picked up acoustic guitars and started doing Lost in the Supermarket and other tunes from London Calling. The entire place continued to dance and sing and I was so blown away that they were playing acoustic guitars and nobody cared! It was the music after all and the attitude and of course Joe Strummers lyrics. That concert changed my life, for real!!!

NN: How did The Crosses start? How does it feel revisiting these songs?

DK: When I saw Flag a few years back I knew that I could do what they were doing too, even if it would be a bit different. They were all ex-members of Black Flag, I would simply be the ex-singer of Die Kreuzen, but I knew it could work. I also need the correct people/players to pull it off. I had known Mike Olson the drummer from Realm and later Decapitado! for years and I knew he could play those very fast and complicated drum parts with some practice. I saw a friend of mine Joe play bass one night and he was speed picking a la Keith Brammer and I knew he also could fit into my group.

Then, while working on the GoGoSlow CD and & I met Dave Eck the guy who would master the GGS recordings. As it turns out Dave plays guitar and is a big fan of the first Die Kreuzen LP! So it was just a short step to getting the guys together and working out the songs. Its been a blast, its a bit harder, faster and a bit meaner maybe than the original, but I think it fits, it's more modern to the times. I think we are all having a good time. Plus we are writing our own material now and a 3 song 7" is on its way and a full LP to follow in 2017.

NN: Do you enjoy writing new material? Is it limiting or refreshing to go back to the beginning?

DK: Yes! New material is where its at. A much fun as it is to play the old stuff I think our new material is what folks will eventually know The Crosses for.

NN: When should we expect new material from The Crosses? What should we expect?

DK: The new songs are somewhat in the vein of the first Die Kreuzen LP but we are all different people, obviously and that makes for yet a new twist and adds new variables to the sound. Its fast, hard and heavy, but as Die Kreuzen did we wont limit ourselves to one style or one type of song. We want to expand yet keep it heavy and hard!

NN: What are your thoughts on the Spin Doctors?

DK: Umm, you mean like Fox News, hate 'em!

NN: How did you survive Y2K?

DK: Out in the open like everyone else. I never thought there would be anything wrong or different when I woke up the next day, and I was right. All that bullshit people were talking about entire global systems crashing.... pure bullshit.

NN: What non-musical things have you riled up lately and why? Have you read, watched, eaten, or drank anything worth mentioning lately?

DK: Well, for the first time in 23 years I've found myself unemployed, so that has kind of taken over as my main source  of frustration lately. Looking for a job sucks! But I'm trying and hoping eventually to work my way in to some live music venues with maybe some other small part time jobs on the side to make ends meet. I recently cut my cable TV and I couldn't be happier about that, there is nothing on cable to watch thats worth a damn. The only thing I miss is watching the Walking Dead on AMC as I'm a huge fan of the comics and the novels. I've loved George Romero's Night of the Living Dead movie(s) since I was a kid!

NN: Last but not least, what are your top three favorite records at the moment and why?

DK: I just saw The Muffs a few weeks back in Green Bay, WI and I've been revisiting their records; Kim Shattuck is an awesome writer and her scream is to die for! The first Cheap Trick LP is also back on my turntable more often than not. Its a staple in my home, its simply one of the best records ever written in my opinion. Robin Zander vocals are so edgy yet tuneful, Ricks guitars are fucking blazing and the bass and drums are so close knit and hard as a rock foundation, one the the best cross over punk and rock LPs ever! Thirdly the first Van Halen LP has been out and and getting air play around here. Those guitar parts are so amazing and there isn't any back up guitars or other overdubs, its just the guys banging it out, its so good and pure, love it!

WATCH: Jaye Jayle - "Hanging Mirror"

Seemingly out of nowhere, months after the release of their latest record House Cricks and Other Reasons to Get Out, Jaye Jayle has unveiled a new music video featuring their song "Hanging Mirror", which can be found on the aforementioned album. The cinematic song appropriately suites the bizarre video that abstractly centers around a girl drawing what looks like pre-surgical dotted lines across her face while sitting alone in a dark room watching the classic German 1920 silent horror short The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari.

There is definitely a creepy, horror vibe, which seems appropriate considering Halloween is right around the corner (hail Satan!). To get more information on the song and video, there's an article at Noisey where singer/guitarist/songwriter Evan Patterson gives a bit of insight.

Watch the video below:

Jaye Jayle - Hanging Mirror from gardenback on Vimeo.

LISTEN: Jim James - "Same Old Lie"

Jim James is on another solo quest with a tour alongside Twin Limb in motion and a newly released single titled "Same Old Lie". This is our first taste of his forthcoming solo project Eternally Even which is set to be released November 4th. It's impossible to know whether this song is a true representation of the album or simply a stand out track that he chose to release first but "Same Old Lie" is certainly not what I was expecting to hear from the first single, and for me that's a good thing.

The track has a lo-fi vibe and a pulsing synth drive that evokes the feeling of listening to the sound of your own heartbeat swirl around your head on a mind altering trip. That pulse starts immediately and never stops. It's simplistic but allows for you to truly experience the what the lyrically driven song is about.

What is the song about? Social injustice, gun violence, maybe it has something to do with an orange man threatening our freedom. "Same Old Lie" is an impassioned look at the current state of things, at least the bad part. Most surprising about the track is that Jim James directly points out that it's your responsibility to vote when he says, "and if you don't vote, it's on you, not me." I never expected that from his first single, or really any song from him. I'm not typically into political songs, but with the climate of the world right now one could argue it would be irresponsible not to use your voice for good. Might as well say how you feel over a bad ass rock 'n' roll track, right?

Take in every soulful line from "Same Old Lie" in this lyric video below:

Thursday, September 29, 2016

INTERVIEW: Ghostgun Summer on Freestyles, Cooking Shows, and Weak Bladders!

A hip-hop collective from our neighbors in the north, Indianapolis, Ghostgun Summer have a gritty style complimented by a taste of Dirty South influence. The beats bang and the samples are bold, pulling from a wide array of sample sources including Tame Impala, which I thought was pretty neat. There is almost a Bone Thugs N Harmony vibe to the music and the rhymes, although with a bit less angular or staccato delivery. The emcees here are on point and not shy with the hooks, so it's pretty easy to get down to. You can check them out this Saturday with the always awesome Bonez and the mighty Bird Zoo at Kaiju and listen below. We caught up with them to ask about their hip-hop, cooking shows, and why anyone would like Trump!

Never Nervous: How did the group come together? Was there one person that brought everyone together?

OREO JONES: In 2013 I curated a show with some of my favorite emcees in the city. It was a wild bill featuring a punk band and I think a stoner metal band in Broad Ripple Park. GhostGunSUmmer formed after our first southern tour that next year once we figured out our sound and managed to put our show together cohesively.

NN: Did or do you all do things outside of the group? If so, is the project like Voltron, to crib something from the Wu-Tang lexicon? What strengths does everyone bring to the table?

OREO JONES: We all concentrate mostly on our own solo projects for the most part. Me, Freddie Bunz, Sirius Blvck, Grey Granite, and John Stamps all have a unique different sound. Grey brings that Sacred Game Rap, he's very knowledgeable on conspiracies and other wild stories. He's got a unique gift at telling stories and just dropping straight game. Freddie is super scientific, His style is wild and he isn't afraid to explore his sound and just get experimental. Stamps is the hypebeast he def can turn the crowd up on the drop of a dime, he's Fountain Squares party boy. Sirius Blvck is a straight spitter, his flow can cut through velvet, he's wise beyond his years.

NN: Do you all have a shared aesthetic? Did or do you sit down and discuss the over all direction of a track, album, or live show, or do you just let the music flow naturally?

OREO JONES: Most of the time we'll just vibe with a beat and take off. We've been writing a lot together which has been cool because we will break it up sometimes and someone will tackle the chorus and some of us will go back n forth bar for bar. Its all natural thats the only way to approach our style.  

NN: How do you write? Does everyone have a hand in everything, or is there a distinct division of labor? Is there a production side and an emcee side, or does everyone have some input on everything?

FREDDIE BUNZ: When I write, I have to be where its being recorded, in the moment. I don't really do well being prepared. I tend to overthink the lyrics that way. When I'm there in the moment with a 1 hr deadline it just pushes itself out. As far as how our tracks come together. Thats the magic in everything. It just magically comes together. its something magical that i cant really explain.   Its like something overtakes you and pushes its way out through you.

"I don't really do well being prepared. I tend to overthink the lyrics that way. When I'm there in the moment with a 1 hr deadline it just pushes itself out."

NN: What's the Indianapolis scene like? How does it differ from other cities that you've visited?

SIRIUS BLVCK: Indianapolis is on the verge of establishing itself nationally and standing next to cities like Chicago or Minneapolis. There is so much great music coming from here that has gone unnoticed for some time but that is about to change.

NN: How do you chose the samples you use? What inspires a beat?

DJ KNAGS: I do most of my production without any samples. I just prefer having 100% creative control and prefer creating my own sounds.

NN: What constitutes a good show and why? What's the worst show you've ever played and what did you learn from it?

JOHN STAMPS: I would describe a good show as any show our DJ Knags doesn't ruin. He has a small bladder and has to leave several times during our sets to urinate. It's pretty embarrassing but he's seen us do some pretty shady shit, so we can't really dump him at this point.

"I would describe a good show as any show our DJ Knags doesn't ruin. He has a small bladder and has to leave several times during our sets to urinate. It's pretty embarrassing but he's seen us do some pretty shady shit, so we can't really dump him at this point."

Worst show we ever played was probably at a head shop on 420. Everyone was just waaaay to high. Or the time they cut our mics and sound for going over our set time when we opened for Lupe was pretty terrible. Any frat show ever. Me and Sirius played at this frat once and some guys brought a sound system down and started playing music on the other side of the basement we were playing in.

NN: What's the story with Let's Do Lunch? Does your interest in food and music ever overlap?

OREO JONES: Let's Do Lunch started off as a project when I was a senior in college, then it morphed into an awesome production with artists I highly admire here in the city. We work out of a studio on the westside of town which is now an erotic poll dancer aerobic and foot fetish foot spa. Myself along with around 14 artists all get together create a variety show showcasing all the cool shit in our city, from conceptual art, to music, and most importantly food. We also shoot it on all analogue equipment using VHS cameras and old school graphic machines.

NN: Why is anyone cool with Trump?

G GRANITE: People are ready for a non-politician politician. People are sick of the same families taking this country into a direction that do not give any benefit to its people. That has set the stage for Trump. Now, Trump is 80% showman and 20% businessman; he knows what a majority of people in America want to hear- HATE and FRUSTRATION- pointed at anyone that doesn't look like them. All that said, I don't feel like he is running for president he's just having fun, the Clintons hired him to ensure her election.

NN: What non-musical things have you interested lately? Have you read, watched, eaten, or drank anything worth noting lately?

SIRIUS BLVCK: I watch a lot of movies and T.V. I fuck wit The Leftovers. And Rob and Chyna. And Donald Glover's new show Atlanta is dope. I like drinking henny and sprite and yoo hoo, but separately; not in the same sitting.

"I like drinking henny and sprite and yoo hoo, but separately; not in the same sitting."

NN: What are your top three albums at the moment and why?

JOHN STAMPS: Rae Sremmurd - Sremm Life 2
That album makes me want to get arrested. Black Beatles is the song of the decade.

Young Thug - JEFFERY
My favorite project by him until him and Elton John drop their collaborative album.

Travis Scott - Birds in the Trap Sing Mcknight
Percocet and Codeine please don't take my liiiiiiiiife....

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

BECAUSE YOU MISSED IT: Joann Jene tells you about the Against Me! show at Mercury Ballroom 9/24/16

Is there anything more infectious than being surrounded by a crowd of people buzzing in a state of absolute bliss? NO, my friends, there is not! And there is NOTHING that puts people in this particular state more than when they are seeing one of their all-time favorite bands right before their very eyes! I am not saying that this was the story for everyone at the Against Me! show at Mercury Ballroom, but I all I know is walked into a room of love and seriously kickass energy and I was pulled down from satellite fandom to the core of the experience like a magnet!

One of the biggest, if not THE BIGGEST Against Me! fans ever, Dylan Feese, was our Sherpa to the show. We had seen Against Me! together one other time at Forecastle a few years ago. During that performance, Dylan and I had made our way up to the front and it was during that show that I realized the depth of his love for the band and for Laura Jane Grace and I was instantly right there with him. Cut back to the night of the Mercury Ballroom show -– we had a killer crew of so many best friends, the air was warm and we were all buzzed up and feeling fine as we rolled up to the venue. We missed the first band but got there just in time to see the band Potty Mouth....and holy coyotes, we loved them! They are all seriously such talented musicians and they look cooler than hell doing it! I loved the interaction between the lead singer and bass player and it was apparent that they have all been playing together and have been friends for quite a while and they just straight killed it!

Next up was the main attraction – Against Me! The venue was crowded but less packed then I thought it would be -- surprising but nice because there was some space back by the bar and it was easy to get drinks and I was able to find all my friends during the show (except Dylan because you know that dude was upfront losing his ever-loving mind)! We were able to move around and check it out from different spots (as soon as Dylan saw I was wearing sandals and gave me a look, I knew I couldn’t go up front and center or my tootsies would get trampled). Meg and I cruised around and bit and watched the show from stage left, upstairs, back by the bar and about dead center. We head-banged our way around the whole dang place!

The most prevalent vibe from the whole night and throughout the entire show was the feeling of LOVE. I found myself full-on grinning from beginning to end. Being around so much positive energy and seeing the band and all the fans so happy to be together, it felt otherworldly to be surrounded by everyone singing along to to every single word of every single song. Laura Jane and the rest of the band were absolutely phenomenal! I am so inspired by Laura Jane Grace and the bravery it has taken for her to be true to herself in such a public setting -- SO INSPIRED! There have been and will be countless people for years to that will feel the exact same way, who will admire and be inspired by this bright and shining example of self-acceptance and inner-strength, and through that find the determination to stand up and be true to themselves as well.

After the band left the stage, following an oh-so-stellar performance, all you could see were smiling faces and sweaty shirts spilling out into the street – Fourth Street was flying high!

Against Me! is the type of band that will always be around as long as they want to keep playing music. They are masters of continual change and growth – which keeps older fans on their toes and constantly draws in new fans who get to experience their entire body of work for the first time. There really is something infectious about seeing someone being true to themselves and I think it is embodied in Laura Jane’s attitude, presence and in her smile – there is nothing that draws you in from the base level human spirit more than a genuinely joyful smile from a person who feels free and is doing what they were put on this planet to do.

Thank you for reading – I love you Louisville!

WATCH: Phorenzics - "Clap For Me"

When I was 7 years old I took karate classes. I'd wear my outfit around the house and do hand chops and Karate Kid crane kicks and shit in front of my mom. I wanted her to clap for me. I don't know that she ever did. Thanks to Louisville MC Phoreniscz, I now have an anthem to match my suppressed childhood attention whoring needs. Except this isn't really about attention as much as it is about a promise.

Seems to me this artist is saying, "I done been through some shit just to make this music happen, y'all gonna get this music one way or the other." And it seems to me that is a much more honorable approach to seeking applause than my little bullshit hi-kicks and what not.

Watch the video below:

WORTH MENTIONING: This song "Clap For Me" is now available on Soundcloud. Hell yes.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

WATCH: Dom B - "Guardian"

Dom B is a beast. Beasts are usually good at guarding shit. Like why do you think dragons used to guard hordes of gold and treasures? Clearly because they have claws, a spiked tail (sometimes, it depends on the genus and phylum) and they breath fire; Dragons would straight fuck you up for messing with anything they guarded. So by logical extension, I'd compare Dom B to a dragon. He spits fire and does well to let nary a fuck boy tarnish the art of lyricism. Entrust Dom B with all of your valuables.

Watch his video for "Guardian" below:

WORTH MENTIONING: "Guardian" is the first single from Dom B's upcoming Noir Files EP. Stay tuned for more information on the release.
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