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Stories written by Kent Alexander

32 stories found. Showing page 1 of 2.

Bad (ass) attitude: So let’s get this party started!

By Kent Alexander

Published: 10/6/2010

Types: Music, Rock/Pop

Taking the stage at PJ's Lager House for his band's sound check, Bad Party frontman Nate Savino fixes the small, alcohol-warmed crowd a sly sneer. "Anyone got some cocaine?" His bandmate and bassist Mike Kearns smirks. The crowd begins to get playfully antagonistic, some yelling silly requ...[MORE]

Out in the open : Getting to know Secret Twins

By Kent Alexander

Published: 9/8/2010

Types: Music, Rock/Pop

There she is, Dina Bankole, a petite, black woman vocalist with her seemingly oversized Gibson Flying V ("Sweet Louise" if you must know the guitar's name), with her "twin" brother, Tim Thomas, on the drums, creating music steeped in everything from '90s alternative radio to the ...[MORE]

Midnight to midnight: A star sideman guitarist who influenced Hendrix and inspired Sam Cooke finally finds his voice

By Kent Alexander

Published: 7/28/2010

Types: Cover Story

It's nearly 9 p.m. on a damp day's night. The Eastpointe record store Melodies and Memories is all but empty, save for manager Gary, and he's 15 mouthfuls deep into his ninth story of the evening, when this tall black dude steps in through the store's double door. The manager's face fixes on him.  ...[MORE]

Puff the magic: And then don't call 'em a jam band

By Kent Alexander

Published: 7/7/2010

Types: Music, Rock/Pop

One day, a 4-year-old Dave Menzo tripped over an old Beatles tape lying on the carpet of his brother's bedroom.  "That's where it all started for me," he says. "I was one of eight kids, most of whom were older than me, so, at 4 years old, I had seen my brothers put a tape in a tape p...[MORE]

Black noise: Darkred is determined to bring shoegazer psych into the modern age

By Kent Alexander

Published: 3/24/2010

Types: Music, Hip-Hop/R&B

Sitting at a wall table in downtown's Majestic Café, guitarist Rob Smith coolly puffs his Camel, waiting for sound check. Decked in a dark blue tailored two-piece suit and sporting a bush of an Afro — he could've stepped straight out of Super Fly — the tall, svelte Smith tugs anxiously a...[MORE]

A glimpse at Saw Her Ghost bands: Try these discs for blunt-force ecstasy

By Kent Alexander

Published: 12/16/2009

Types: Music, Rock/Pop

And The Sky Went Red/Signs of Collapse Split (2006) ATSWR were among the first bands to sign with Saw Her Ghost. A group that disbanded in 2007, their sound was hinged on common metalcore traits; meaty, chugging guitars and an utterly scything bass.  Detroit's Signs of Collapse, another recentl...[MORE]

A beast rising: A Detroit metal-maniacal indie label launched on ear-bleed riffs, faith and a couple hundred bucks

By Kent Alexander

Published: 12/16/2009

Types: Music, Rock/Pop

You rarely, if ever, hear stories of American indie metal and hardcore labels keeping their respective visions alive against the backdrop of a hostile economy and generally disconnected metal scenes. You don't hear about them, because metal labels, especially those in Michigan, usually can't muster ...[MORE]

Hello, we must be going: Detroit's unheralded — but dynamic — the Recital calls it a day

By Kent Alexander

Published: 12/2/2009

Types: Music, Local Music

His band may be preparing a breakup and its final show — but Adam Kempa doesn't sound all that hung-up about it. In fact, he sounds quite upbeat, managing to stuff in more than a few sprightly chuckles during a recent conversation. His cheerful demeanor probably reflects that, while the Recita...[MORE]

Rockin' to the core: Royal Oak metalists armor its mojo with self-belief and hooks

By Kent Alexander

Published: 6/10/2009

Types: Music, Rock/Pop

By this time next year, Core Effect could potentially be working huge fests such as Ozzfest and even Lollapalooza. Their videos could be No. 1 on YouTube and on Headbanger's Ball. After all, the Royal Oak-based band already has its latest single in rotation on 101 WRIF, as well as on other Midwester...[MORE]

Tops at 20: Showtime Clothing enters its third decade of decking us out

By Kent Alexander

Published: 4/22/2009

Types: Culture, Shopping

For 20 years, Showtime Clothing has been a kind of staple for Detroit's boho underground — a not-so-quiet treasure trove of original and idiosyncratic garb, a winning collection of new retro, ersatz couture, rock 'n' roll, slutty, vintage, killer footwear and more — for nearly ever...[MORE]

A Japanese new-rock primer: Boris ... and Japan's modernized amplifier worship

By Kent Alexander

Published: 7/9/2008

Types: Music, Rock/Pop

American journalists often complain that the Japanese tend to take elements of Western culture, most notably music, and give it a quirky, frequently incomprehensible (at least to Western ears) foreign spin. That's definitely the rap they give to the Japanese rock trio named Boris. But after 16 ...[MORE]

Inner grooves: Turbo Teen tackles teenage tastes in tunes, and discovers he’s still an outsider

By Kent Alexander

Published: 4/11/2007

Types: Music

I know I'll never get tired of music. I'll never get tired of seeing it, playing it, hearing it; of experiencing someone's heart and soul, someone's blood and tears, in my hands and in my CD player. And yet, sometimes it seems that the idea of music as one's own personal connection to a bigger w...[MORE]

Loud loonies of God's creation: Michigan's extreme metal underground dwells in fringes and basements. Choke Chain label head explains why

By Kent Alexander

Published: 12/6/2006

Types: Music

No, it's not about inline skating or Moto X.Extreme metal is a catchall term for musical subgenres like death metal, black metal and doom metal, all of which descend from the pounding, screeching and punkish spirit of 1980s thrash. Death metal is accelerated thrash, singing swapped for guttura...[MORE]

Ozzy who?: The kids have spoken: Our teen critic gets cranky over Ozzfest

By Kent Alexander

Published: 7/19/2006

Types: Music, Rock/Pop

Metal's as hotly contested as any other musical genre. Arguments always rage over which bands are sick and which are sellouts, which groups have left their mark with bruised ears and drawn blood, and which should think about hacking off their hair and heading home. Of course, the louder metal ...[MORE]

Down tune: Our kid crit weighs in on a couple of head-shredders blowing his mind this week

By Kent Alexander

Published: 7/5/2006

Types: Music, Rock/Pop

Boris Pink Southern Lord Records After eight years of destroying everything in their path, this Japanese band manages here to squish most of their expansive stoner rock-drone sound into 50 minutes. If you’re like most people and don’t know the band, think of them like this: They li...[MORE]

Metal ain’t murder: Is there such a thing as a kinder, gentler hardcore? The youthful PETA2 and various metalheads think so.

By Kent Alexander

Published: 5/17/2006

Types: Culture, Health & science

Where the hell would metal be without leather, huh? How would the music "look" without the Jim Morrison pants, the motorcycle jackets, the studded wrist bands, and, of course, the Rob Halford-style homoerotic posturing? It's a funny question because so much of metal has long been about the appe...[MORE]

Flaming sludge: Turbo teen takes on High on Fire’s Matt Pike and Vernon Reid

By Kent Alexander

Published: 2/22/2006

Types: Music, Rock/Pop

It's ugly and alluring in one glance. It's loud, abrasive and dynamic in one listen. And it all works together well for the doomy, beautifully dreadful High on Fire, and its spokesman and singer-guitarist Matt Pike. As a kid, Pike began his metal journey in true metal fashion — by getting ...[MORE]

The beast of metal : Our pup crit takes a breather from high school to weigh in with his best-of picks for 2005

By Kent Alexander

Published: 1/11/2006

Types: Music, Rock/Pop

1. Nile Annihilation of the Wicked (Relapse) You’d be hard-pressed to find anything resembling beauty in death metal; it’s a genre that promotes the destruction of the clean and healthy. But, after years of chipping away at the artistic, um, rock, Nile managed to create somethin...[MORE]

Fair game: Shadows Fall shouter talks riffolgy, philosophy, vegetarianism and doing metal on your own terms.

By Kent Alexander

Published: 8/3/2005

Types: Music, Rock/Pop

Ninety sticky degrees, little shade and a crazy blazing sun aren’t enough to get Shadows Fall shouter Brian Fair down. In fact he stands in it for most of our conversation. “Good times,” Fair says, laughing. But is his laughter mocking? If anything, it’s self-mocking. See, ...[MORE]

No more puppetry: How Metallica helped this kid break away from stereotypes and find redemption

By Kent Alexander

Published: 7/6/2005

Types: Music

I was at a school fair the other Wednesday. It was an internship fair. My school prides itself on such things, so I had to be there. My internship is, you see, at Metro Times. But, I didn’t have anything exceptionally riveting to present other than my Metro Times work and that I was a hug...[MORE]

Grind it out!: Our kid rock crit weighs in on a few new sour, and tasty, hardcore releases

By Kent Alexander

Published: 6/1/2005

Types: Music, Rock/Pop

Circa Survive Juturna Equal Vision Record Hardly a year-and-a-half old, this American five-piece has quickly built up a fan base of hardcore kids who want something more than a bunch of screams and fist-pumps to go with their sonic blasts. And for good reason, ’cause Circa Survive manages to sati...[MORE]

Metalology: He may not be old enough to drive but our pup rock crit can still riff on death and all things metal.

By Kent Alexander

Published: 3/9/2005

Types: Music, Rock/Pop

Shadows Fall The War Within Century Media Records Welcome to the new wave of American heavy metal. Shadows Fall’s latest shot (their fourth; the third with vocal cord-abuser Brian Fair) is a metal wake-up call. It proves that some bands still believe in mixing badass musical chops with kickas...[MORE]

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