Saturday, April 10, 2010

Check out - "Hey You" (Consquence of Sound)

311, the stoner rock-rap-reggae band straight from the heart of the Midwest, Omaha, NE, is back at it again. Nick Hexum and the gang have released the first single from the upcoming disc, Uplifter, due June 2nd. The selection is titled “Hey You” and it is Hexum’s ode to his “constant companion” and “long time friend,” music. The track winds its way from their distinctive intro riffs to a rock reggae chorus aided by a verse that finds S.A. singing about his one wish, “for this music to be an uplift… all the people can sing along with one song.” After another chorus they pull of a beautiful “Amber”-esque moment where Hexum and S.A. end up harmonizing, something that should be done more often. Closing out the track is an amped up chorus with the added “Hey you, you never turn your back on me when I gave up on myself. Hey you, what would the world be like without you around [music].”

If anything, “Hey You” shows off 311’s ever present versatility, and it’s immediately superior to anything off their last album, Don’t Tread On Me. Hexum hints that there’s still more to come with the line, “[Music,] you’ve always let me explain just what I’m saying and we’ve just begun.” Needless to say, longtime 311 fans, like yours truly, should be pretty jazzed for what is to come. Kudos 311, let’s see where this takes us.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Detroit always a good time for members of 311 (MLive)

The reggae-rock collective 311 is one of the few bands that can pull fans into amphitheaters long after an album has been released. Bassist P-Nut (born Aaron Wills) chalks that up to the act’s devoted fan base.

“A new album, where that used to mean so much, doesn’t mean a ton for bands that have been established for so long,” he said via telephone with The Flint Journal. “I think Pearl Jam is the perfect model for that. ... They’re going to have a special poster every night. They’re going to release the live shows on their website. It’s pretty amazing. It’s definitely something for us to shoot for, as far as how their relationship is with fans and how they give them everything they want. That’s why they can do anything they want to do.”

311, whose last album was the summer of 2009’s Bob Rock-produced “Uplifter,” will bring its “Unity Tour” to DTE Energy Music Theatre on Wednesday with Offspring and Pepper in tow.

“It should be good,” P-Nut said. “It’s another one of the handful of times we’ve done tours with people (Offspring) that can tour on their own with absolutely no problem bringing in thousands and thousands of people. It’s another band that people may come to see more than they come to see us. There are going to be Offspring fans that are going to want to see the show outside of our own. It should be pretty cool.”

P-Nut is especially thrilled about playing the Detroit area. 311’s last experience in the community, June of 2009 at Freedom Hill in Sterling Heights, was an “amazing” one.

“The night before, we were in Chicago,” P-Nut recalled. “We usually play 90 to 100 to 110 minutes on a good night. As we were walking to the stage in Chicago, our manager told us we only had an hour to play because of some noise restriction. We were playing in the city. We were working on the weekend rules but it was a weekday so we had to shut down by whatever o’clock. So we had to cram an hour and a half into an hour. That was really fun. It ended up being a good show.

“By the time we got to Detroit, the next night, we really had another half of a show to play in us and proceeded to just go completely off. The crowd did the same. When there’s real reciprocation like that, it makes it a very, very memorable experience for all who attend. I walked off stage going, ‘I wish we would have filmed that. That would have been something to watch over and over again.’ It was so much fun.”

This time around on tour 311 is going to be writing new material for a forthcoming album. The particulars of the album are up in the air, however, because 311 — which also includes DJ/singer SA Martinez, drummer Chad Sexton, vocalist/guitarist Neck Hexum and guitarist Tim Mahoney — parted ways with its longtime label, Jive Records. It has a few songs under its belt already that it wrote prior to 311 Day, a concert it holds in New Orleans on March 11.

“We’ve got seven or so new songs that we’re playing around with,” P-Nut said. “We haven’t touched them in awhile. I think we’re taking a step back and writing more stuff, kind of all of us on our own. Hopefully we’ll learn a couple more songs before the tour begins. I know I have one or two that are pretty much ready. I’m really excited about. That’ll be nice to add to it. Then we can rehearse those at soundcheck and get ready to play a ton of different songs this summer.”

P-Nut said he doesn’t think any of those new songs will surface at shows this summer.

“I’m sure we won’t play any of the new stuff this summer,” he said. “Anyone who’s hanging around outside the show will hear something as we soundcheck. I think it would be fun to do some day. We don’t really do that too much; play stuff that no one’s ever heard of. It gets kind of a lukewarm response even if it’s the best song in the world. The relatability is a little low.”

311, The Offspring to perform at 2010 California Mid-state Fair (The Tribune)

Two alternative rock bands have joined the entertainment lineup for this year’s California Mid-State Fair.

Touring together for the first time ever, 311 and The Offspring will appear alongside rock-reggae trio Pepper, fair officials announced today.

Formed in 1988 in Omaha, Neb., 311 found mainstream success in the mid-1990s with its hard-rocking self-titled album featuring the chart-topping single, “Down.” Other hits followed, including “All Mixed Up,” “Amber,” “Come Original” and “Love Song.”

The alt-rock band is currently touring in support of its ninth studio album, “Uplifter.”

Meanwhile, The Offspring dominated the punk rock scene with its 1994 breakthrough album “Smash” and the hit singles “Come Out and Play (Keep ‘Em Separated,” “Self-Esteem” and “Gotta Get Away.”

The Huntington Beach band enjoyed a second wave of success in 1998 with the release of “Americana,” known for the songs “Pretty Fly (For a White Guy)” and “The Kids Aren’t Alright.” A ninth album is current in the works.

The Offspring and 311 are scheduled to perform July 23 at the Paso Robles Event Center, 2198 Riverside Ave. in Paso Robles. Tickets, which cost $30 to $75, go on sale on April 23.

For more information, call 238-3565 or visit