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Vow of Volition Make the Final Round of the Battle for Warped Tour

The Vans Warped Tour was the first festival for many of us back in the day. As young'ns, it's likely we didn't necessarily think about all that went into figuring out the bands to book and play the whole shebang. Part of that process, at least locally, seems to be through a series "battle of the bands" style competitions specifically for landing a spot on the fest. Quite a few Portland bands have been furiously playing against one another for said spot, and djent/prog metal act Vow of Volition are one of the acts that made it to the finals.

Warped Tour was always the type of festival that included much in the realm of pop punk, punk punk, emo and metal, so Vow of Volition's advancement to the final round is no surprise. Their incredibly technical, at times jazzy metal stands out in Portland's pretty linear popular music scene, and is much worthy of the attention its getting.

Those that want to support Vow of Volition in driving home the permanent spot can go to the Battle for Warped Tour finals Saturday at the Hawthorne Theatre.

   

Samia drops video for new single "21"; plays Elsewhere on 06.01

With a vocal range that reaches as high as her dreams and as low as the darkest depths of her lyrics, Samia has released her latest single "21" courtesy of Grand Jury. Though she had a brush with Spotify fame last year after the company put her on their "Badass Women" playlist, she hasn't let the excitement get to her head. She packs her new single with her mellifluous vocals and most raw lyrics about turning twenty-one; topics discussed include making family proud, self-image, and the push to succeed against the drag of adulthood. Hear that in the chorus phrase "You're alive and you're on fire/Why are you so tired?" In the video, Samia dances around in any empty loft, scrawls desires on the walls, and stares out the window, looking for the thing that she feels she should have achieved before her twenty-first birthday. It's safe to say that she's achieved quite a bit already. Samia will play Elsewhere's Zone 1 on June 1st; until then, check out the video for "21" below. - Will Sisskind

   

A Deli Premiere: new psych-pop single from Beechwood

Beechwood’s specialty is classic garage rock with a psych tinge. Sometimes it’s in-your-face, loud and proud punk, sometimes it’s syrupy indie pop, but the New York trio pretty much has their thing figured out. The group’s newest single, “Boy Before,” hits closer to the later with a glam rock guitar riff introducing a Jesus and Mary Chain-esque haze. Guitarist/vocalist Gordon Lawrence in particular shines on the track with an almost sleazily enticing, half-murmured vocal delivery. The track comes in advance of Inside The Flesh Hotel (preorder it here), out June 8 on Alive Records, and a string of European tour dates. Take a listen to “Boy Before” below. Beechwood is currently touring Europe – Cameron Carr

   

Pllush releases single "Big Train" in anticipation of debut LP 'Stranger to the Pain'

“Big Train” (streaming below) is the third and final single to be released off San Francisco-based quartet Pllush’s (formerly known as Plush) forthcoming debut LP Stranger to the Pain. The guitar-driven track showcases an intense collision between shoegaze, indie and pop. Self-described as “sob rock,” Pllush’s sound is unique; overlaying fuzzy guitars with emotional lyrics creates a gut-wrenching chorus (“Who’s gonna love me more / when I’m crying in the middle of the night? / Maybe I’m feeling torn / because nothing ever comes out right”) with a power that grows with each repetition, until it eventually explodes in a surprising mix of pop harmonies and grungey lead vocals. The full album will be released on June 8 and Pllush will be celebrating the record release that night at Bottom of the Hill. - Lilly Milman

   

New Dark Thoughts Live EP Available for Streaming & Download

Philly punk outfit Dark Thoughts is getting ready to release a new full-length album. The band recently stopped by Drexel University's WKDU on April 1, 2018 for a live performance/recording session. The trio surprised the station's listeners with a little preview of its forthcoming LP, Dark Thoughts At Work, pounding out four new songs - "Anything II," "Psycho Ward," "I Wish," and "Gimme Soda," which you can stream and download below. And if you still are thirsty for more, Dark Thoughts will be performing next in Philly at Common Beat on Sunday, June 3 with Cult Objects, as well as Boot & Saddle, on Sunday, July 29, opening for Iron Chic.