Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Happy February. I know I'm a day early, but who cares.

I just wanted to waste a few minutes of everyones time and let you know which albums are currently holding my iPod hostage.
1. Action Action - An Army of Shapes Between Wars
2. Inkwell - Chaos Reveals Rhyme
3. Gym Class Heroes - The Papercut Chronicles
4. Piebald - All Ears, All Eyes, All The Time

Listen to them.

I love that I can say anything I want in this blog. Half the time, my posts don't even have any point. They're just mass chaos and redundancy sugarcoated with funny anecdotes and shots at my friends.

Pay your rent.


Sunday, January 29, 2006

Our show last night at The Haven was everything I could've hoped for and more. We started off the night very strongly and I think we played a great show. Everyone said we had really good energy, so big thanks to the audience. We feed off of you. We're like energy leeches. But we don't suck the energy out of you, so it's more of a symbiotic relationship. We saw a lot of familiar faces and didn't see some we expected. Can't win them all I guess. If you didn't come to the show, you seriously missed out.

Aside from my main guitar not wanting to work AT ALL, I don't think we had any technical shenanigans happening. There was a hole in the stage that I kept stepping in. Oh, and my glasses were completely covered in sweat. But those two minor inconveniences didn't hamper anything. If you were there... how freaking cool was the beginning of our set? I mean honestly, you just don't see showmanship like that nowadays.

We had planned for a 30 minute set, but when they told us we were slated to jam for 40 mins, we got to put in all the songs we felt bad about cutting out. We played six songs off the record and added four of our newer tunes into the mix. I had a blast.

The band after us took close to an hour to set up. That was a long time. Sorry if my leaving early offended anyone, there were people I needed to visit with in a quieter location. I won't do that at the next show, I promise.
Before the gig we were all hanging out at my apartment and I was writing Camp Counselor type songs. Things they would sing to kids around a fire, but mine had that really creepy edge. That sort of "Hey, if a kid sings this, he's never going to notice the innuendo" stuff. We're gonna release an album of those songs someday. It will tank. Hard.

If you've visited our MySpace or PureVolume pages lately, you'll notice that we have a show date in March up in Ocala, Florida. Finally, right? It only took eight months to hook something up. So yeah, Ocala peeps... we're coming back, and if you're not there, the trip will be in vain. March 11th at K&K Concert Hall. All ages to boot.
I hope the kids in that town are still nice. We have fond memories that don't need to be shattered.

My downstairs neighbor is being so loud. He has a massive television and leaves his door open while he watches movies filled with explosions. My floor is shaking. Ridiculous.

Hope you all had a great weekend. I went to an Irish Pub on Friday with my gal pal. They had one of those crazy loud TouchTunes jukeboxes (with a speaker RIGHT beside our table). We put in our cash because we were itching for some 80's music. She was in a Depeche Mode kind of mood, and I'd had enough to drink that A-Ha's "Take On Me" seemed like a wise decision. We sat for ages waiting to hear our tunes. Nope, never happened. So to whoever in the bar queued up 800 songs... screw you. Granted, you chose a few good songs here and there, but half of your music selections weren't even worthy of being yelled over. We left without hearing our songs, so hopefully the last callers were dancing to A-Ha while I was passing out.
Oh, and oddly enough, I got recognized in the bar. I didn't think enough people even knew about our band to be recognized for it. That's only happened to me twice and always makes me feel awkward because I don't know what to say.
"Yes, I'm in Early Next Year. Nice to meet you. Uh....hmm... have you tried the wings here? I've heard they're to die for."
So awkward.
I don't want to talk about me. Sorry.

Now I'm bored. I'm sore from jumping around the stage last night like a possessed monkey.

This entry goes out to all my dead homies.

That was weird.


Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Since we are on the topic of new music here at the E.N.Y. Journal I felt the need to throw in my two cents on a couple of new records.

The official Doug McPherson seal of approval goes to....

Portugal. The Man - Waiter: "You Vultures"


Rocky Votolato - Makers

Listen to the former if you want to hear something unlike anything else out there right now. More specifically really technical indie rock. The music on the album wouldn't sound out of place on a Blood Brothers album except there is singing instead of screaming. Listen to the latter for an amazing acoustic singer songwriter. This record really breathes new life into what was becoming a stale genre rife with Dashboard Confessional and Bright Eyes imitators.
Check them both out!


Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Alright, so who picked up the new Action Action CD, An Army of Shapes Between Wars?
It was released today. Get Big on it.

I just finished my second listen. Talk about complete randomness and chaos. I like it. A lot. This takes what was awesome about their first disc Don't Cut Your Fabric to This Year's Fashion and kicks it up a notch. Granted, it's not all that different. The band says that this release is "the other 90% of the iceberg that the first album didn't show."
I couldn't agree more. The songs seem quite lengthy, when really, most of the tunes hit around 3-4 minutes with another minute of random music bed thrown in before or after a track. Those little additions definitely give the album some character and don't last long enough to get old or monotonous. Each song goes in it's own direction and I don't feel like I ever heard the same song twice while listening to it. Their use of synths, electronic toys, and guitars blends together seamlessly. Can they pull it off live? Who knows. I've missed them everytime they've come through Orlando, but I hope to catch them the next time around.
There's a few moments on this CD that literally gave me chills the first time I heard it. Parts in songs that made me so incredibly jealous that I didn't think of it first. I could never write music like they do. It baffles me how they even pull cohesive songs together. Like many of my favorite bands and artists, they're not someone I would ever try to emulate, so I just pop in the CD, sit back, and appreciate what they've created knowing that it's way over my head.

Bottom line, if you enjoyed their first CD, then you'll definitely dig this one as well, but don't expect to see many shades of The Reunion Show in here. Those days seem to be dead and gone.

Standout tracks include: "Smoke and Mirrors," "A Tornado; An Owl," & "The Game."

4 stars out of 5.

I can now cross this off my "Most Anticipated CD's of 2006" list.
Next up: Rhett Miller - The Believer


Saturday, January 21, 2006

Ah, the show at Duke's last night. Yeah.
Good times overall. The four of us plus Doug's wife spent the first half the evening poorly playing pool. We bought an hours worth of table time and were bent on getting though as many games as humanly possible. We were playing doubles, but I don't remember if I was ever on a winning team. Half the time I didn't know if I was shooting for stripes or solids. Yeah, I'm terrible at pool and it was my idea to play. Didn't think that one through too well.

There was a band up from Tampa who opened the show and were pretty good. They had a female singer which is always a lot of fun for a rock band. 'Sidekick's Downfall' played second, which is a local screamo act. Their bass player popped one of his strings near the beginning of his set. Up third was 'In Regards To...' who were definitely my favorite band of the evening. Good energy, and catchy songs. The guitar player blew a tube on his amp midway through the set, so we should have seen the omens that nothing was going to run smoothly.
There was actually a healthy crowd at the venue and we didn't do a whole lot of promotion due to our show next Saturday, so as we took the stage last we played for a handful of folks who stuck around and I think they enjoyed it. We got some dancers and some clappers and kept the songs fast and catchy. We had to drop three songs off the setlist due to time constraints, but we still played everything we really wanted to and even debuted our newest song 'Lifeless' for the first time. I think that one went over very well. People clapped through almost the entire song so we had some really good energy to feed off of. While we were soundchecking, Mr. Sound Man was surprised we only needed two vocal microphones. He asked if JoAnna was our "screamer." Hah. Gotta love those witty sound guys. I guess we were the only band without one though.
Then we ran into a few technical issues. On the second to last song, Doug somehow managed to lose all of his sound effects from his pedal and was left with nothing but what came stock on the electronic little devil. We adapted, and as we closed out the night with 'Girl Like Her' I realized during the bridge that JoAnna was nowhere to be found on stage. Turns out she was rocking too hard, so she threw down her bass and ran back to the green room to puke. Once the song was over we all ran offstage to make sure she was alright. She was laughing about it. Only JoAnna. Next time you see her, give her a hard time about it.

Despite all that, we had a great time, met some new people, and hopefully will be seeing some familiar faces next Saturday at The Haven. Thanks to those who grabbed a copy of our CD, we always appreciate the support and the kind words.

I always feel like we're going to be out of place on shows, but I love it when the audience is receptive, or at least takes the time to listen to a song or two before leaving. We've been playing last on the bills a lot lately for reasons unknown, but on the 28th we're actually opening the show, so come out at 9pm, hear us jam, and then toss back a few drinks with us and enjoy the rest of your evening.


Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Since there has been some confusion regarding our show this Friday at Duke's Orlando, here is the final word: Admission is 21+ and a $5 cover. We apologize for this. When we booked the show, the venue was allowed to host 18+ shows but that's no longer the case.

We'd still love to see you soon though, and on Saturday, January 28th, we're playing an 18+ show at the Haven in Winter Park, and then in February we're part of a great all ages show at Will's Pub in Orlando (23rd) and the all ages Spring Music Fest in Port Orange, FL (Feb 25th). And oh, what's this... we have 2 additional all ages shows in the works for February. Things are looking up, eh? Do us a favor and actually show up to these and we can do many more in the future.
You've asked and asked for all ages shows, so here they are!

Why is it so cold? I thought that was a thing of the past.

This week has been long and tedious. I'm looking forward to the weekend, a good show, good beer, and good company.

Album Recommendation of the Week:
Up Up Down Down Left Right Left Right B A Start - The Internet EP

Hey, look at this... FREE MUSIC!
Up Up Down Down is kind of a wacky band made up of a bunch of people from other bands. How do we know them? Well, I could do one of those "Seven Degrees" games but I'll skip that and cut to the chase. Our pal Evan, the bass player from New Jersey's The Progress is their guitar player. Confused? Keep reading. We've opened some shows for The Progress on two of their tours through Florida and last time when we were all hanging out after the show he got to talking about an internet EP they had just finished and released via their website.
I highly suggest downloading the songs and creating a playlist for it. Then put it on repeat. The songs are rather short, but there's a great indie pop feel. Think of it this way... Up Up Down Down is like Death Cabs cousin who rocks a little harder. That's the best way I can describe it.
They recently released another internet EP called "Girls Names" but do yourself a favor and download the "Internet EP" first.

Let me know what you think. Let them know what you think.

As with all music... if it sounds good and makes you happy, then by all means, listen to it.


Monday, January 16, 2006

Hi there. How are you? I'm great. Read this.

I think we can officially say that we, Early Next Year, have been featured in our first Podcast to date. The Rock Show on The Podcast Network aired our song "East Coast" for Podcast #41: The Mellow Death. You can download it via that website or on iTunes. Our section of the broadcast begins about 14 minutes in. The host says a few things about us, the song plays, he says a bit more and the next band comes on. Give the entire podcast a listen as he features some other great unsigned talent.
Thanks to Mr. Ewan Spence for featuring us on his station.

Did you have a good weekend? Mine was long. Good talk.


Friday, January 13, 2006

It's Friday. Go out and do something. I'm even going to take my own advice for a change. Beer and loud music, here I come.

Work on Sunday morning. Goodbye Saturday night.

Is anyone else looking forward to Rhett Miller's new CD, The Believer, as much as I am? 2/28/06.

The more things change, the more they stay the same.
Ain't that the truth.

What a crazy, crazy week. Sleep's never sounded better, but there's still so much to do and the rain has to quit eventually.



Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Apparently there is some sort of plot afoot where an evil genius is reuniting bands who have been a big influence on our music. First, it was The Rentals. Now? Ozma. Yes sportsfans, that's correct... Ozma has reunited with a new drummer and will be recording a new album and hopefully doing some touring as well.

Here's a great little anecdote for you...

Back in the day when Doug and I first got the whole ENY thing rolling, we were listening to the (best) Ozma record, Rock and Roll: Part 3 and noticed that the beginning of their song "Shooting Stars" and one of ours shared the exact same guitar intro. Scandal! Did we rip them off? Nope, not on purpose. Great minds... and all that. Needless to say, we don't play the song anymore. So don't try to sue us, Ozma.

I think Weezer should go on tour with Ozma and The Rentals. If I had to, I would sell both of my kidneys to see that show.

Alright then, cosmic gods of band reunition... resurrect for me: The Anniversary. Go listen to their classic disc "Designing a Nervous Breakdown" and you'll see it's bands like them and The Rentals who paved the way for that Motion City Soundtrack band everyone loves so much. Give the credit where due!

Oh, and could we go ahead and resurrect The Kickovers? Yeah. I mean, why not?


Sunday, January 08, 2006

In the past, when seeing bands live, I've always been frustrated if they didn't play the songs I was there to hear and instead played new material that I didn't even know. After some careful consideration in the past five minutes, I've come to the conclusion that I totally understand why. When you're in a band, you like to keep things fresh and exciting, especially when you've been playing the same songs night after night, show after show for the last two years.

We're as guilty of this as anyone. On any given night, we play a set consisting of about eight or nine songs. Since we only have seven songs on our EP, and only six of those really get played on any given night, we tend to mix in some newer tunes. And by newer, I mean songs that have been around for ages but we didn't have the time or budget to fit on our CD. That thing could have been a full length release if we'd had another month to work on it. Some of these "newer" songs such as Send A Letter, Extra Twenty, and They Always Say have become show staples, but sometimes we forget about the tunes we've been playing for a while. We tend to make our setlists about five minutes before we go on stage, so sometimes we accidently neglect some of the tunes. Some nights it's really hit or miss if we'll play something like Window, or substitute something more upbeat and catchy.

Tonight at practice we decided to play through two newer songs since we'd been too busy with shows and holidays to rehearse them. However, I think we completely knocked them out of the park and with another practice they should be ready for public consumption. So do we play these songs at upcoming shows, or do we stick with the stuff on our CD that people actually know?

I guess the main bullet point of this whole presentation is that if you know that you'll be at our show... tell us what we should play!
After all, we're doing these shows for the people who are there. If you want to hear a specific song, then just tell us! We'll be more than happy to oblige. It makes our lives that much easier.

Whenever I check our PureVolume or MySpace pages, I sometimes get heated if a certain song is getting more plays than another. As Doug reminds me on a daily basis... these songs don't belong to me anymore. Once they're on CD, it's out of my hands as far as which one is the "best"... the one song I love playing show after show could be the least favorite of all of our fans. It's weird to think about. I created the children, we've raised them as best we could, and now we've sent them off to school to fend for themselves hoping that they find someone to sit with at lunch, and that they won't get bullied by the big kid who already has secondary hair.

Profound, huh?

Oh hey, we're playing an all ages show at Will's Pub in Orlando come February with some great artists. Life just got way more exciting.


Friday, January 06, 2006

It's Friday. I have nothing to do tonight. I'm now torn between a quiet night at home attempting to write music, or begging someone to go out to a bar with me.
I need someone to follow me around and make tough decisions for me. Wait... no... that's called living with your parents. I can do this. I can do this.

Today I asked Doug whether I was better described as "weird" or "quirky" (yes, this is what we do at work). He suggested that "quirky" was the better adjective to be associated with me. I quickly came to a realization that quirky is indeed better. Quirky people tend to be more likeable even though they take their oddness to the brink, almost to the point of no return, just to bring it back to keep their friends from leaving them stranded in abandoned parking lots.
Weird people pick their nose, smell funny, and eat glue.
Actually, I've done no scientific research on this, so I can't back anything up.

Wow, we're quite boring when we don't have shows to talk about.

Now remember, the new Action Action disc entiteld An Army Of Shapes Between Wars is out 1/24/06 on Victory Records. Do not forget to pick that up.
In fact, buy me a copy since I'm broke.


Thursday, January 05, 2006

Happy freaking birthday to our resident axe master, Doug McPherson. He turns 23 years old today but remains proof that just because you're older, it doesn't mean you're smarter.

Bring him a nice gift to our show at Duke's (in Orlando) on January 20th. He likes beer.


Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Hey guys, I usually don't post very often, but I thought this would be worth it.
Early Next Year is now on The Oink torrent site. If you've got an account you should check it out. Its freakin sweet.
http://Oink.me.uk is the site.
<3 JoAnna

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Happy 2006!

Hope everyone had a blast last night and did something fun and memorable. I'm still in the recovery process, but overall it was a great night.

As my new year's gift to you, I spent the week before Christmas editing together a bunch of ENY video footage so I could show friends and family while I was in Ohio. However, I'm so pleased with how it came out, that I've uploaded it online and I'd love for you guys to check it out as well.

It's a bunch of footage we've accumlated over the past few months at shows, in the studio, and random craziness from our day to day lives set to our song Completely.

So check it out, enjoy it, and be sure to let us know what you think!

click here to view the ENY video montage!