Fly By Midnight Gives New York The Feels at Mercury Lounge

 
Justin Bryte (left) & Justin Salvo (right) performing live at Mercury Lounge. Photo courtesy of Sergio Carrasco.

Justin Bryte (left) & Justin Salvo (right) performing live at Mercury Lounge. Photo courtesy of Sergio Carrasco.

Fly By Midnight performed at Mercury Lounge last week after a prolonged absence from their native New York City. The indie-retro pop sensation, known for their charm, unique vocals and infectious hooks, packed-out the legendary LES venue with screaming fans as they performed covers and songs from their compilation album “New York Nostalgia.”

The Staten Island duo have had a successful 2018 so far, coming off the heels of a successful college tour, the release of their break-up song, ‘Just Say It” (on Valentines Day we might add) and a compilation album of previously released singles back in March. Recently, Fly By Midnight was one of the first artists to be voted solely by their fans to perform at this year’s Firefly Music Festival in July.

Justin Salvo with emotion on stage at Mercury Lounge. Photo courtesy of Sergio Carrasco.

Justin Salvo with emotion on stage at Mercury Lounge. Photo courtesy of Sergio Carrasco.

Fly By Midnight opened their headliner with two unreleased tracks on Wednesday that showcased the duos groovy basslines, gushy harmonies and retro-pop elements that blossomed perfectly with Fly By’s seductive vocals.

Fly By Midnight crooning underneath the lights. Photo courtesy of Sergio Carrasco.

Fly By Midnight crooning underneath the lights. Photo courtesy of Sergio Carrasco.

We were trilled to watch Fly By Midnight perform “All The Feels,” which they performed that morning at Billboard Studios. Their performance highlighted some of Fly By Midnight’s best traits with stellar production, sex appeal and a two-step basslines that had Mercury Lounge grooving the night away.

Their performances to “Vinyl” and “Just Say It” displayed Fly By’s resilient stage presence that exemplified their strong fan engagement and humble approach within their music. We sang along harmoniously and clapped to the beat, as Fly By put on an anthem-esque style performance on, “Vinyl,” under Mercury’s flashing lights. On “Just Say It,” the band jammed out with commanding, yet sensual vocals, strong guitar licks and a powerful drum set that kept the audiences hands in the air.

Official break up song visual for "Just Say It" by Fly By Midnight.

Along with amazing renditions to Michelle Branch’s “Everywhere” and The Beatle’s timeless hit “Hey Jude,” Fly By Midnight closed out their set with their chart-topping track, “Vibe” ending the night with an explosively rich performance with alluring melodies and a breezy summery feel that lit up the crowd.

Justin Bryte on stage at Mercury Lounge. Photo courtesy of Sergio Carrasco.

Justin Bryte on stage at Mercury Lounge. Photo courtesy of Sergio Carrasco.

Fly By Midnight crouching in front of the crowd at Mercury Lounge. Photo courtesy of Sergio Carrasco.

Fly By Midnight crouching in front of the crowd at Mercury Lounge. Photo courtesy of Sergio Carrasco.

With their consistent fan engagement, unique music style and charming on-stage presence, it’s no wonder why Fly By Midnight is an emerging band that has rippled across the indie-pop landscape. With sold out shows in colleges and universities across the country, Fly By is slowly transitioning on becoming one of the larger names in the independent space.

Fly By Midnight playing live at Mercury Lounge. Photo courtesy of Sergio Carrasco.

Fly By Midnight playing live at Mercury Lounge. Photo courtesy of Sergio Carrasco.

Through their savvy use of social media, post-show presence and approachability the band has forged their path towards creating a growing and trending brand that strikes the hearts of their young fanbase.

Catch Fly By Midnight at a city near you and add their new single, “All The Feels,” to your playlist this week!

Fly By Midnight on stage at Mercury Lounge. Photo courtesy of Sergio Carrasco.

Fly By Midnight on stage at Mercury Lounge. Photo courtesy of Sergio Carrasco.

 

#WomenInRock: Back to the Bowery with Revel In Romance

 
Revel In Romance at The Bowery Electric. Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos.

Revel In Romance at The Bowery Electric. Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos.

Last month we kicked off our first ever #WomenInRock showcase at The Bowery Electric, recognizing both women in music and the female-led independent bands making waves throughout New York City and further.

With the second installment of the series hosted at The Bowery again last week, we featured two phenomenal bands that offered a rock/alternative sound coupled with an unparalleled stage presence and electrically driven compositions.

DD White opened the show in front of an early Friday evening crowd, offering versatile sounds fueled with an energizing appetite, dynamic vocals and an intuitively robust drum set. The Detroit-based/NYC-living band was an instant hit among audiences, as DD White portrayed a riveting performance charged with influences of alternative-rock, soul and cabaret. Along with an energetic and in-your-face instrumentation, DD White’s performance was fantastically catchy, intimate and exciting. Lead singer, Tiffany Wiesend, dominated a league of charming yet powerful vocals that ushered DD White’s alluring, raw charisma on stage.

L to R: Collin Stanley (Guitar), Tiffany Wiesand (Lead Vox), and Chris Agar (Bass) Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos.

L to R: Collin Stanley (Guitar), Tiffany Wiesand (Lead Vox), and Chris Agar (Bass) Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos.

Tiffany Wiesand of DD White on Lead Vox. Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos.

Tiffany Wiesand of DD White on Lead Vox. Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos.

Collin Stanley of DD White on Guitar. Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos.

Collin Stanley of DD White on Guitar. Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos.

Guitarist Collin Stanley and bassist Chris Agar were the backbone of this five-set band turned trio (as two members were unable to perform). Collin’s work on the strings was ultimately explosive. His blend of classic rock’ n’ roll and mid-90’s punk, provided edgy and addictive guitar riffs that blended perfectly with the bands overall pop-soul and cabaret-esque notes.

The bands performance of their latest singles “Even a Girl” and “Blame You” was an exhilarating and captivating experience that kept audiences struck. Tiffany’s roaring vocals were complimented beautifully with Agar’s funky play on bass and Stanley’s dynamic style on guitar. DD White’s opener was epic; another example of the soaring vibes, genuine talent and eclectic stage presence that many indie female-led bands have today.

Coming all the way from Atlanta, GA, Revel in Romance headlined our #WomeninRock showcase with an alternative-pop sound infused with hints of early 00’s rock. This five-piece band was loaded with an arsenal of gorgeous electric riffs, in-depth beats and profound rock melodies that quickly packed the room at The Bowery Electric.

Devin Maier and Saxony Raine of Revel In Romance. Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos.

Devin Maier and Saxony Raine of Revel In Romance. Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos.

Award-winning vocalist, Saxony Raine, lead the performance with poetically soothing harmonies that were rich with emotional lyrics, crushingly reckless pop vocals and enchanting arrangements that gave a breath of life to Revel’s tight instrumentation. Saxony’s voice on “Echoes” and “Dust” were a prime example of lyrical depth and thematic storytelling filled with passionate sentiment that propelled Revel In Romance into a powerful and invigorating performance elicited with the themes of love, pain, passion and sex.

Guitarists Parker Rehklau and Devin Maier were an essential component of the bands alternative-pop inspired sound bursting with galvanizing strings, pulse-jolting rhythms and punk-rock swag. Rehklau and Maier were the highlights of the performance as they illustrated their strong guitar play in front of the crowd as they drew closer to the embolden rock melodies piercing sharply through the Bowery’s amplifiers. 

Devin Maier and Saxony Raine of Revel In Romance. Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos.

Devin Maier and Saxony Raine of Revel In Romance. Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos.

Mark Robinson of Revel In Romance on Drums. Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos.

Mark Robinson of Revel In Romance on Drums. Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos.

L to R: Devin Maier (Guitar), Mark Robinson (Drums), Saxony Raine (Lead Vox), Remington Rehklau (Bass), and Parker Rehklau (Guitar). Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos.

L to R: Devin Maier (Guitar), Mark Robinson (Drums), Saxony Raine (Lead Vox), Remington Rehklau (Bass), and Parker Rehklau (Guitar). Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos.

Revel In Romance complex sound and measured instrumentation offered us an overall sound that fit beautifully throughout the night, displaying how female-led indie-bands not only emerging with great music, but also by providing incredible experiences that fans can remember.

With the second installment of our #WomenInRock show behind, we're already well underway to planning the next series' installments. The artists we've had the pleasure of working with thus far are a clear sign as to just how many hard working bands fly under the radar. With this series, we hope to highlight more with each months show. Stay tuned for our next segment!

 

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Revel In Romance | Facebook | Twitter

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Marcus Machado - Bringing Back Lead Guitar at Soul in the Horn 2016

 
Marcus Machado at SummerStage 2016. Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos. 

Marcus Machado at SummerStage 2016. Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos. 

It was the Soul in the Horn festival at Herbert Von King Park in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn last Wednesday and the amphitheater was filled with the thick, smooth, sounds of Marcus Machado and his guitar. Performing among a line up of talented acts, such as Maurice “Mobetta” Brown and Kendra Foster, Machado stands out amongst a roster of serious talent that flowed together beautifully at this years Soul in the Horn Festival.

Machado strummed his guitar effortlessly with a full and powerful sound. The jazzy notes and bluesy rock arrangements closely resembled those from Machado’s legendary influencers, such as Jimi Hendrix, Prince, Carlos Santana and Eddie Hazel to name a few. Yet, Machado projected an upbeat, fun, unique and intricate arrangement that blend the sounds of blues, rock and jazz masterfully. During his performance, a five-piece band accompanied Machado on the drums, sax, bass, keys and smooth vocals, filling out the sound. Songs ranged from classic jazz, to full on “I absolutely must move my shoulders” funk.

Marcus Machado and band at SummerStage 2016. Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos.

Marcus Machado and band at SummerStage 2016. Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos.

Marcus Machado at SummerStage 2016. Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos

Marcus Machado at SummerStage 2016. Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos

The music had the whole crowd moving and filled the summery air with a sweet, smooth and positive vibe. One that Machado purposely created, reminding the audience to “give love” and “practice peace” throughout his performance. At a particularly beautiful moment, before one of his closing songs, he asked the audience to hold up their peace signs as he dedicated the piece to those we lost in the tragic Orlando attack, as well as Mohammad Ali and Prince, whom we also lost this year. The amphitheater quickly filled with peace signs in the air and a subtle moment of silence before launching into another graceful, roaring, guitar track.

Soul in The Horn 2016. Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos

Soul in The Horn 2016. Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos

If his undeniable talent isn't’ enough to consume you, his stage presence will be. Machado stands tall and cool, front and center of the stage, holding his guitar like it’s an extension of himself and strumming it casually as if it’s completely second nature. He has a swagger to the way he moves about the stage; nodding at this band and coyly demonstrating that he’s the one in charge.

Marcus Machado at Soul in The Horn 2016. Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos.

Marcus Machado at Soul in The Horn 2016. Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos.

It’s not often you see the guitarist front and center, leading the show; which Machado is trying to change. As he said in Rolling Stone Magazine’s “Next Young Gun” featured article, “While I feel like these days there’s a lot of great players out there, something has changed where you don't’ really see guitar players as the lead people.” He’s doing his part to bring it back. The entire band was amazing, and delivered a full sound, but the guitar lead the way. And those guitar solos? Damn.

Soul in The Horn 2016. Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos.

Soul in The Horn 2016. Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos.

Soul in The Horn 2016. Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos.

Soul in The Horn 2016. Photo courtesy of Kevin Vallejos.

Seeing Machado playing live is a must. He willfully, and unapologetically, commands the stage beautifully with his presence, skill, and effervescent sense of love and harmony. He has dates here in New York from now through December. His guitar-powered EP, 29 is currently streaming on Spotify and on his website, Official Marcus Machado, where you can also see all of his show dates, bio and music. This artist is an act you don’t want to miss! 

 

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French HipHop/Blues Band Scarecrow Put On a Roaring Performance at Drom NYC

 

Very rarely do we get the chance to witness a group of music who can grasp the sounds of different cultures so effortlessly and harness them as their own. With the power of a roaring bluesy vocal, a groovy baseline and a smoking late 80’s/early 90’s sound, Scarecrow - The Blues Hip Hop showed us how artists can successfully master that calling. 

With much thanks to the combined efforts of The French Embassy and Bureau Export, Scarecrow showcased their talents for the France Rocks SummerFest in New York for the first time in over two years last Friday. We caught their performance at the mysteriously intimate and gypsy-esque Drom NYC amongst a group of music enthusiasts excited to take part in the French quartet’s latest act as they prepared for their second album, The Last, releasing this coming Friday.

Scarecrow’s featured performance was a spine chilling and aggressive piece that spoke of the band’s ingenuity and aesthetic appeal. Ahead of a thunderous and enticing intro, lead vocalist and bluesman, Slim Paul, let out a roaring vocal that channeled across the shadowy halls of Drom, crawling up its back-stage curtains and hurling towards us. It was a unique sound that truly blew us away: A kick-ass note that personified beautifully through Paul’s affirmed lyrical and edgy voice, labeling its mark at any New Orleans jazz club or Memphis BBQ joint.

What followed was a genre binding and sound twisting bar from French emcee, Antibiotik Daw, who also masterfully scratched the turntables with late 80’s/early 90’s urban adlibs, screeching hints of Chuck D, Run DMC and The Wu Tang Clan. Although we unfortunately couldn’t understand the fast hitting French lyrics, it was Antibiotik’s confidence, swag and all-out vibe that helped get our heads bopping, while the bluesy bass lines from Jamo and funky drum set from Le Pap, helped solidify Scarecrow’s urban and bluesy musical arrangements.

What really struck us was Scarecrow’s consistency. Whether their song was predominately hip-hop, blues, funk or a bit of both, the quartet meshed the sounds together flawlessly. When Antibiotik viciously spit on the mic, Slim Paul's raw vocals and Jamo's gripping guitar play brought Scarecrow's performance from the sounds of classic hop-hop into the essence of rock. Accompanied by Antibiotik’s scratches, we were constantly taken for a musical ride that stopped along 80’s hip-hop, 70’s funk and good old fashion dirt-road blues.

Scarecrow’s hip-hop elements, raw rural bluesy notes and urban-esque vibe provided the finishing touches on an already bubbling melting pot that billowed a steam enriched with generations of musical influences, cultures and instrumentation. Scarecrow’s continuous efforts to bridge together American and French music are groundbreaking. With sounds reminiscent of both Screamin' Jay Hawkins and 90's Hip-Hop, the group truly is deserving of their international praise. Their ability to embrace these different sounds allows them to conquer audiences in not only the U.S. or Europe, but throughout the world as they've performed over 400 shows in 10 countries and have a tenacity to produce even more.

This group can truly be an inspiration to aspiring artists and bands across the globe not only for their incredible showcases, gritty music, and cool vibes but for how they can bring cultures together. Somehow we seemed to have lost that in both the mainstream and independent music scenes, but Scarecrow tackles it head on. Truly, they are one of the best bands we’ve seen this year. Can’t wait to catch these guys again. Their new album, The Last, will be available for streaming and digital download this Friday, June 24, 2016. Make sure to catch Scarecrow the next time they’re in your city!

Make sure to listen and follow to Scarecrow – The Blues Hip-Hop music below.

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Raye Zaragoza Offers a Bluesy New York Farewell at Rockwood Music Hall

 
Raye Zaragoza live at Rockwood music Hall. Photo courtesy of  Larufoto

Raye Zaragoza live at Rockwood music Hall. Photo courtesy of Larufoto

Saturday nights in the Lower East Side are typically crawling with artists and their guitar cases rushing to their next gig and filled with partially belligerent fans scattering about to find the nearest music venue. But last night, Rockwood Music Hall housed a one-of-a-kind bluesy, dreamy, folky, and all together beautiful showcase from Raye Zaragoza; your new favorite singer-songwriter.

When Raye takes the stage she resembles the presence of a revolving door. It’s as if every time she opened her mouth she would deliver a seemingly flawless note with more and more people rushing in from the streets.

Raye is a New York based singer songwriter who has been training in live music for years. Unsurprisingly, given her natural talents, it gives me no pause to learn that her father is Broadway actor Gregory Zaragoza, who had her started at a young age. Her sound is seasoned, technical, classic, and effortless at the same time.

Raye Zaragoza live at Rockwood Music Hall

Raye Zaragoza live at Rockwood Music Hall

Raye has been a part of the music scene here in New York for years, frequenting venues like Arlene’s Grocery, The Knitting Factory, and Bizarre Bar in Brooklyn. Back in 2013 she was even a featured artist at LA Skins Music Fest, which must have inspired her in someway, seeing as Raye is now relocating to Los Angeles.

“All my songs are about New York, I don’t know what I’m doing going to LA. What am I going to write about?” Raye jokes in between songs. 

The room was so involved in her, she had them completely captivated. Through the crowded audience, I couldn’t tell if it was her beautiful lyrics about love, heartbreak, and New York City, or if it was her undeniable beauty and genuine stage presence, that had everyone so enchanted. But regardless, the room was silent as she sung, and roaring with applause when she finished.

Christian Nourijanian (left), Raye Zaragoza (center) and Tim Bassom (right)

Christian Nourijanian (left), Raye Zaragoza (center) and Tim Bassom (right)

Raye’s sound is reminiscent of Norah Jones, Billie Holliday, and Eva Cassidy. She’s a strong vocalist, but perhaps even a stronger writer. Her arrangements are simple, clean and highlight the lyrics of her songs. All of which are relatable without being boring, and beautiful without being over the top. Her EP, Heroine (available on SoundCloud and Spotify), is a beautiful collection of songs that represent her vibe perfectly: a classic and moving artist.

Though this is her farewell show in New York, to end things Raye just sweetly says, “thank you,” as she strums the last note on her guitar- because this is not goodbye - you'll being seeing amazing things from this girl from here on out.

Stay up to date with her music and live stream the Heroine EP below:

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