Tag Archive: electronic


This weeks Bands You Should Know takes us back to Chicago once again for another local band that I am a fan of, Kill Hannah.  Some of you may already know Kill Hannah because of their 2006 track, Lips Like Morphine.  The song hit 37 on the US Modern Rock Chart.  The other song they are known for is “Kennedy” which was featured in the show Jack & Bobby.  Sadly though, that has been the only single they had that did chart, which I think is a shame because I think they have a rather unique sound.
They also prove that sometimes a break up is a good thing.  Devine had been dating a woman named Hannah while in the band In a Jar UK.  Eventually Hannah and Mat split.  Mat decided to print up some stickers with “Kill Hannah” on them to put on the band’s 7” records.  Eventually in 1993 Kill Hannah was born.
Kill Hannah has had songs in movies, tv shows, toured the world and even opened for acts such as Papa Roach, AFI, Jane’s Addiction and 30 Seconds to Mars.  Hell, they even appeared on Last Call with Carson Daly (ok, granted nobody watched that show but still).  So it’s a bit strange to me that they’re still stuck on the runway and haven’t quite taken off.  They even hold the record for most sellouts at The Metro in Chicago.  The band currently consists of Mat Devine, Dan Wiese, Greg Corner, Elias Mallin and Michael Maddox.
Kill Hannah’s music is classic 90’s rock with a bit of industrial and electronica thrown in, there’s a hint of Stabbing Westward that comes through, though Kill Hannah isn’t quite as heavy.  The band looks like an emo act, super tight clothes and pretty hair, but thats all they share with that genre, the music is far better than almost all of those acts.  In fact, if I had to guess, I would think some of those bands looked at Kill Hannah and ripped off their style.  The guitar work is great and there are some nice electronic sounds here and there also.  The drums are pretty solid and Devine’s vocals are rather unique.

The band has released  8 studio albums, some self released and hard to find, so far and plan on recording a 9th in 2012.  The band also toured the UK in March of 2012 and is playing Wicker Park Fest in Chicago this July 28th.  If you’re going to be in Chicago, check them out, if not check out one of the 6 albums below.


The Beauty in Sinking Ships (1996)

Ah, the first album, sadly I no longer can find my copy, and can’t find a copy anywhere.  In fact, to be honest, it was self released and I have no idea how he got it.  it seems to be extremely rare and hard to find.  So all I can tell you is from memories of the day, I had been out of highschool for about a year and a buddy of mine, Bill knew I was a fan of Stabbing Westward and thought I would like Kill Hannah also.  He was right, like I said above the style was similar, Stabbing was harder rock to me then Hannah, but I thought Kill Hannah’s vocals and lyrics were slightly better.  Of course back then I never bought the album, I just copied his onto cassette tape, which I have since lost or thrown out because, well, I haven’t played a cassette tape in about 15 years.  If I ever find it or find a copy, I’ll revise this section.

Here Are the Young Moderns (1998)

This is basically the exact story as above, Bill played this one for me as well, but I have no idea where my cassette copy of his is.  I was able to find 2 of them, both used, on Amazon…for 129.99, which to me is a bit much since most of the tracks are available on two other albums. Hyperactive, Get Famous and Nerve Gas can be found on American Jet Set, the next album.  Stunt Pilots, Hummingbirds The Size of Bullets, Love Sick, Sleeping Like Electric Eels and Kill Hannah can be found on The Curse of Kill Hannah.

American Jet Set (1999)

This is the first Album I bought.  It’s a great album and I’ve listened to it many times.  In fact, you can actually still find this one, but its out of print and pretty rare.  You may be able to get it digitally on itunes or Amazon, but I haven’t checked.  I also love the cover, reminds me Throughout the album you can hear great vocals, great guitars and drums and a great use of keyboards.  Yup I said keyboards, and they’re used properly.  Like I said in the section above, 3 of the tracks are from the last album.  Most of the tracks are pretty solid, but I will admit that the song Get Famous, is a bit, well cheesy maybe, well lyrically anyway, although it still sounds pretty good.  My favorite tracks off of this album are All That He Wants (American Jet Set), Nerve Gas, Sick Boy, Los Angeles and A New Medicine.

For Never & Ever (2003)

For Never & Ever is the first major label debut for Kill Hannah.  Released under Atlantic Records and Produced by Sean Beavan, it’s the album that spawned the single “Kennedy” which was featured in the TV show Jack & Bobby.  It has a more refined and clean sound, but it still has the same power and sound that the other albums all had.  It’s kind of like waxing a Ferrari, the car looks good anyway, but it looks better with some shine.  The guitar work and drumming is as good if not better then previous efforts and the vocals are still solid.  The lyrics are deeper and more meaningful, which usually happens with age and experience. My favorite tracks off of this album are Kennedy, 10 More Minutes, New Heart for Christmas, From Now On,  Raining All The Time, Unwanted and Is Anyone Here Alive?

The Curse of Kill Hannah (2004)

In 2004 The Curse of Kill Hannah was released.  Curse is pretty much a best of, from 96-98.  Not really sure why it was put out, but 4 of the tracks were from Here are the Young Moderns and 1 from The Beauty in Sinking Ships.  I don’t have the album so I really can’t say much about it other then it seems to be rare also, as is most of their early stuff.  You can find it on Amazon, ranging in price from 13 to 30 dollars.

Until There’s Nothing Left of Us (2006)

3 years after mild success with For Never and Ever, Kill Hannah released Until There’s Nothing Left of Us.  It was the 2nd major label release, again on Atlantic and Roadrunner in the UK.  Unlike the last album, recorded in LA, Kill Hannah came home to Chicago to record this album.  Recorded at Groovemaster Studios and Produced by Johnny K and Sean Ray Molino it spawned the song Lips Like Morphine, which hit 37 on the US Modern Rock Chart.  The album itself reached 8th on the Top Heatseekers chart, but only 178th on the Billboard 200.  Once again the album was polished and sounded more atmospheric than the others and also a bit more glam rock and some tracks are a bit poppy, but it still sounds great.  Even with the minor changes when you hear it, it’s still easily recognizable as Kill Hannah.  In fact even though its a slight departure (extremely slight) from the other albums, It’s one of my favorites.  My favorite tracks?  You know I’m just going to say the whole album, not because I’m lazy, but because I think its that good.

Wake Up The Sleepers (2009)

Wake Up The Sleepers is the latest release from Kill Hannah and was released in 2009.  It was also the album that marked the return to a independent label, leaving Atlantic for Original sound.  While they “left” for an independent, Original Sound is still an affiliate of Universal.  The album itself builds on what they started with Until There’s Nothing Left Of Us and expands that sound a bit more.  The production is top notch and as good as anything out there.
Too me, most of the tracks are a bit on the mellow side but still sound good.  There is a bit more of an 80’s new wave and electronic vibe to some of the tracks on the album.  The lyrics are a bit deeper and there are a few guest artists (Benji Madden, Amanda Palmer, Chibi and Matt Skiba)  Personally I think Amanda Palmer was well worth it, but Madden was kind of a throw away for me.  All he did was some harmonies, he wasn’t really featured much.
A lot of the other reviews I have read for this album praise and say it’s the best Kill Hannah album ever, I disagree, I Like it and think it’s very solid, but not the best.  For me, I guess the best is a tie between Until There’s Nothing Left Of Us and American Jet Set.  As for the best tracks on this album, well here they are.  Radio, New York City Speed, Living in Misery, Tokyo (Dance In The Dust), Mouth To Mouth, Vultures (Be There For Me), Acid Rain and Laika.

Conclusion

Since the mid 90’s when I first heard Kill Hannah they have continued to evolve but kept their sound.  I think they have gotten better with age and with a new album supposedly coming out in 2012/2013 the future looks bright.  So if you’re looking for something new that you’ve never heard check out Kill Hannah, and thanks for reading!

-JP

 

Well here we are another week of 2012 in the books, so what did we learn?

Apparently you can sue yourself…..kinda.

In an ongoing saga for the great Stan Lee, he is now being sued by himself….kinda.  He is actually being sued by a company he started…..then left…..which actually bears his name.  I wonder in the courtroom if there will be Stan Lee then an evil Stan Lee? That would be wicked….the full confusing story can be found here http://www.movieline.com/2012/03/07/stan-lee-vs-stan-lee-the-epic-legal-follies-of-a-comics-mastermind/ for those of you interested.

 

What the?! I thought I had the new iPad?!

Well, not me, I never would be able to afford one, but for millions of Apple users and fans the iPad 3 was released this week to….well…I’m not really sure.  There are some improvements over the iPad 2, but not to the extent most had hoped.  Most of my Apple friends say they’ll wait for the 4th one.  I mean it’s nice and the new display is awesome, although calling it a retina display is a bit confusing, I thought it had to do with retinal scanning for security.  I’m sure it’s going to sell, I mean for 10 years Apple could’ve sold a ketchup popsicle to a woman wearing white gloves in the desert, but the latest iPad just doesn’t seem to be a huge jump.  While the new feature set is nice, better rear camera, better and faster graphics, better display etc, I think the biggest feature is that it caused a price drop for the iPad 2’s.  Which means more people will probably be giving them a look.  For the full specs take a look here http://www.digitaltrends.com/mobile/the-new-ipad-3-everything-you-should-know/

 

It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s a Bat!

Batman Year One Deluxe edition is being released on March 14th.  For those that don’t know, year one is critically acclaimed and is one of the most important in the Batman saga.  It’s obviously about the crime fighters first year, one thing that makes this issue special is that it’s written by Frank Miller, with artwork by David Mazzucchelli.  So if you’re a Batman fan, this is a must have.  For more info check out http://firewireblog.com/2012/03/08/batman-year-one-deluxe-edition-new-printing-due-on-march-14th/

 

They do exist! Well maybe.

So, in Peru a mummy was found, nothing new there, except that it has an elongated skull.  Yup, this things skull is almost the size of its small body and as usual everyone is baffled.  Did I mention the larger than normal eyes also?

An anthropologist believes it to be a child of under 2 with an enormous head which possibly a human sacrifice.  Let’s be real for a minute, chances are it’s just a deformed human, but I’m sure that crazy greek dude, Giorgio A. Tsoukalos from Ancients Aliens (I love that show) will be talking about it soon enough!

Check out the full article at http://reinep.wordpress.com/2012/03/07/mummy-with-giant-head-discovered-in-peru/

 

I just bought the game! What do you mean there’s already DLC that I have to pay for!?

So the hotly anticipated ending to the Mass Effect trilogy, Mass Effect 3, was released this week…..along with the first DLC (downloadable content)  Some people see this as just another way to get more money from the already popular game by offering the DLC at launch.  We as gamers are always surprised to see a patch needs to be installed for a game that just came out, but to have DLC on launch day just makes it seem like we bought an incomplete game, jeese, give us a month to think that our 60 bucks bought a full game before you release the DLC! Anyway that’s just my thought on it.  As long as it’s not important to the finale I guess no one’s twisting your arm to buy it.

“What do you mean there’s already DLC?”

 

Glad you’re back from the injury, now if you would look at this pink piece of paper…….

It was announced this week that after 14 years the Indianapolis Colts decided to release Peyton Manning.  I guess the main concern was the amount of surgeries he had, but in 2011 they signed him to a 5 year deal, worth 90 million dollars.  I guess the prospect of another injury was too great for a team that went 2-14 last year.  With Peyton gone and their Superbowl winning coach, I guess it’s time for rebuilding.  I’m sure Manning isn’t retiring anytime soon and plenty of mediocre clubs would pay millions more for him.  For more about it check out http://anomicofficedrone.com/2012/03/07/peyton-and-the-colts-part-ways/ and http://www.nfl.com/news/story/09000d5d82777827/article/peyton-manning-colts-part-ways-in-most-appropriate-fashion

“Seriously, I always thought you’d get cut before me!”

 

From the “What the hell?!” department…..

Conservative Christian Pat Robertson wants Marijuana legalized.  Yeah I know of all people right?  His arguments actually make sense on this one though.  He talks about the cost of the war on drugs and even thinks the US has gone too far when it comes to drugs.  Pointing out how many juveniles are being locked up for years over a joint, unless you’re rich of course (he points that out)  He also says that he believes it should be treated like Alcohol.  He even points out that since 2006 47,515 lives have been claimed in Central and South America (granted not all are related to Marijuana)  Any way, if you’d like to read more, and I’m sure some of you would like too, here’s the full story http://20poorandfabulous.com/2012/03/08/pat-robertson-wants-marijuana-legalized/

“Is it 4:20 yet?”

 

What’s it take to be an internet star?

Well apparently not doing an informative beer show on Youtube, blogging about beer or this blog either.  Apparently you need to be a rebel leader for 20 years in Africa kidnapping and terrorizing villages oh and keeping them as slaves, normal and for sex.  In an effort to catch him a video about Joesph Kony was released on Youtube.  The 30 minute video shows his atrocities and had 32 million views by Thursday.  For more on Kony check out http://www.freep.com/article/20120309/NEWS07/203090359/Hunt-for-jungle-militia-leader-Kony-goes-viral-aiming-to-get-him-arrested?odyssey=nav%7Chead   or Wikipedia him.  If you want to check out the video of this scumbag for yourself, take a look here http://youtu.be/Y4MnpzG5Sqc

“Joseph Kony, putting the infant back in infantry since 1986”

 

Take him down Red 1!

12 years ago a little game called Counter-Strike was released, well, to be fair it was a Half-Life mod.  It quickly became one of the most played PC online tactical shooters ever, in fact many still play the original today.  Then a few years later Counter-strike Source was released, bringing a new level to the genre of tactical shooters.  Not only were the graphics better, but using the Source engine made the physics way better as well.  Even though the Call of Duty and Battlefield series have kind of taken the lime light, both Counter-Strikes are still played today.  Now, 12 years after the original, Valve and Hidden Path Entertainment are releasing Counter-Strike: Global Offensive.  One of the coolest features? Cross platform play across all supported systems! Yup, whether you have a Mac, Windows machine, Xbox 360 or PS3, you’ll be able to blast your friends full of holes.  I for one can’t wait.  For more info and a trailer check out http://store.steampowered.com/app/1800/

“Here Kony, Kony, Kony.”

 

It really is bigger on the inside.

So apparently the babies room, formely my computer room/office/catch all is a T.A.R.D.I.S (Time and Relative Dimension In Space for you non Doctor Who fans) because it seemed to bigger on the inside.  For the last for weeks I have been sorting through 15 to 20 year old crap and throwing out countless garbage can loads.  I then moved the rest into a much bigger space in the basement….which apparently couldn’t hold everything, so I went through again and finally the basement is about 90 percent done.  How an 11×11 room wouldn’t fit in a 40×20 space is beyond me.  How I accumulated that much junk is also beyond me, I guess old John is less tolerant of crap and throw more away then young John did.

“Yup, there is 25 years of crap in here, including a Sony sports cassette walkman and a socket 3 486 motherboard! Old Skool bitches!”

So yeah, that’s it for this week, it’s actually kind of a lot isn’t it?  So I hope you learned something and enjoyed it.  Thanks for reading!

John

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