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New Music Friday: RMBLR, Gateway Drugs, & Weezer

May 8, 2020

By Bella Carles

Shot right before lockdown, RMBLR (pronounced Rambler) shot and recorded their latest single “Machine Gun” about a week before US shelter in place order. Shot and edited by Jarrett Barnes, with graphics by Alex Hagen (Ravagers/RMBLR), gives us a taste of their raucous live show.

RMBLR banded together July 4, 2016 by four mercenaries active as the “Filthy Few”, who were the touring line up for widely known, proto-punk sensations, Dinos Boys at the time. The mighty reign of RMBLR stretches down the east coast, with members belonging to the boroughs of Baltimore & Atlanta. A reputation precedes this gang as a “Rabid Rock and Roll band that foams at the mouth with the snotty sounds of 70’s punk, snarling“buzz saw” blues riffs and a spit of hard glam, stadium stompin’ hooligan chants.”- (Jesus Christ) Direct descendants of Chuck Berry. Sons of The Saints and cousins to Coloured Balls of Australia. Kin to The Kids of Belgian. Ramblers and Rumblers. Madmen and Muck Runners. Veterans and active soldiers serving a lifetime duty in the name of punk and rock and roll.

Stream Machine Gun Everywhere Now

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Gateway Drugs is back with ten tracks to shake us all out of our collective stupor. Following up on their 2015 LP Magick Spells (Dine Alone) comes PSA, a record that retains their characteristic shoegazy, psychedelic sound that Hellbound likened to “The Stooges meets My Bloody Valentine and the Brian Jonestown Massacre all at once—a little dark, a little eerie and a little grainy and all intoxicating.” Liv, Noa, and Gabe Niles, the three siblings that make up the LA-based band, are joined by longtime friend James Sanderson on bass/guitar, whom they met and formed an instant bond with back in 2010 while on a tour of the US.

Photo By: Ryan Nolan

The result is an album that reflects “everything that is wrong in the here and now: eternal pop culture reruns, the entertainment industry’s lack of authenticity, protest fashion and the almost total state of apathy we all find ourselves in due to feeling powerless to effect any change with respect to all this,” says the band. PSA is an attempt to connect with others who feel the same way and regain a sense of our ability to change things for the better.

Above, their second single Slumber,” featuring lead vocals by Gabe, the song is a reflection on unrequited love, with all the attendant rejection. The video however takes a different twist as the band invites viewers into a day in their life. “Videos nowadays tend to be overly cinematic or pretentious. The songs get lost and leaves little room for the listeners imagination. We wanted to keep it simple, sincere, and true to form, so we shot and edited the video ourselves”. With a sensibility steeped in rock ‘n’ roll rectitude, the band say “We hope you like it. Come hang with the gang.” 

Produced by Sune Rose Wagner of the Raveonnettes, the album was recorded live at Josh Homme’s Pink Duck Studios, PSA is raw, wild and chaotic, much like the last few years of the band members’ lives.

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Weezer are thrilled to release a new song called “Hero,” their first new material since last year’s Top Five Alternative radio hit “End Of The Game.” “Hero” is a new song off the band’s forthcoming album, Van Weezer, which was originally set for release this month; a new release date for the record will be coming soon. Watch the video for the song, paying tribute to frontline workers below.

In honor of the real heroes, the band has teamed up with Postmates to support healthcare heroes caring for COVID-19 patients. Tonight, hero nurses at LA’s Good Samaritan Hospital will be sent meals from Uncle Paulie’s Deli during their breaks thanks to Weezer, Postmates and Feed Hero Nurses, a volunteer-run organization in partnership with Random Acts that is dedicated to providing meals to nurses on the frontlines.

Van Weezer, the band’s fourteenth studio album, is produced by Suzy Shinn (Panic! At The Disco, Fall Out Boy). The inspiration for this album derives from the deepest roots of Weezer – metal! What has metal got to do with Weezer, you ask? In his earliest years, Rivers was a huge KISS fan; Brian was a big Black Sabbath fan; Pat worshipped at the altar of Van Halen and Rush; Scott loved Slayer and Metallica. The last time this vein of harder rock was mined by Weezer was on their much-loved 2002 album Maladroit; Van Weezer is primed to take that album’s sonics many steps further courtesy of producer Suzy Shinn.

Pre-order the album Van Weezer here.

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