A year ago there were no shows to attend, let alone tours or festivals. As we claw our way slowly out of the darkest time in recent history as music fans, and concert goers (and photogs and writers too) the specialness of even the average show is not going to be taken for granted right now. So the return of Chain Fest, which has sprouted a life of its own after a humble beginning as the flagship event for Anaheim, California’s Chain Reaction, is huge for fans and really, the entire SoCal scene. While Chain Reaction remains a vital venue for bands, Chain Fest has kind of become a monster, growing every year and expanding to the Fivepoint Amphitheatre. When it was announced for 2021 and sold out pretty fast you could tell the excitement was high. Chain fest not only features special bands from Punk, Indie, Emo, and post-Hardcore, but always features bands doing special sets you can’t see anywhere else. We are all kind of living in a 2021 Punk version of Almost Famous where “it’s all happening” all the time!
Riot Fest has made the final weekend additions to the 2021 event, kicking off September 19th, 2021, which will be the fest’s first-ever Thursday Preview Party. Patti Smith and Her Band and Alkaline Trio will join Thursday night, with additional sets from Joyce Manor (performing their self-titled 2011 debut), WDRL, and Kristeen Young. As for Sunday, The Flaming Lips will return to Riot Fest on Sunday, bringing the fest-favorites back to Douglass Park on September 19 to replace Pixies. Sunday attendees will also get into the Thursday Preview Party for free, with a host of freshly-announced perks included. Tickets are on sale now at the link below.
Nearly fifteen years ago, current Killswitch Engage members Jesse Leach and Adam Dutkiewicz teamed up to birth the collaborative project Times of Grace. This dynamic duo pushed their creative boundaries by conjuring a fresh take on the heavy-yet-melodic sound. They delivered their debut album, The Hymn of a Broken Man (Roadrunner Records) in 2011. The gloom and aggression let loose on that record was ignited by the brutally honest songwriting. The themes of struggle, heartbreak, and hope were potently delivered with a real and plaintive spirit. These two brought forth a discovery of powerful melancholy and now ten years later, they are offering a sequel to that revelation. Their second full-length Songs of Loss and Separation (Wicked Good Records) is carrying on the melodic mournfulness, yet wonderfully wholesome sound that is Times of Grace.