Exile by Kevin Emerson (Review)

Note: May contain some spoilers. 

I recently went on a road trip and on the way home I decided I wanted to stop at Barnes and Noble in a another state.

Sometimes I find other books in other states or they just have a better variety. (Only have one book store in my area and it is 40 minutes away and recently converted to mostly textbooks because its close to two colleges, even thought the colleges have their own bookstores.)

At first I picked up Eleanor and Park. I was unsure because the synopsis or cover just didn’t do anything for me. So I went downstairs to find more YA books. And that is where I made the best and worst decision of my life. Coming down the escalator I saw Exile by Kevin Emerson staring at me. I saw the duel connector in the shape of a heart and in the x what it looked like a rockstar with a guitar. I instantly knew it had something to do with music and was drawn in. I read the synopsis and knew that regardless of what the price was I had to purchase this book. I love reading but the one thing I love more than reading is Music. Music has surrounded my life since I could remember (Which is the age of 3). And In less than 4 short days, I was finished with the book.

I have so many emotions (even a day later after I have finished this book). Sadness for Val and Caleb. Anger towards Kellen, and Val. And so much more. I think mostly I was drawn to this book because of Catherine/Summer.

I relate to her on so many levels its ridiculous. She lost her first band to corporate/corrupt record labels. I love listening and interacting with “Indie” bands (Indie as in not well known. Isn’t signed, or is signed to a small label nobody has even heard about). Ex. Carly Rae Jepsen. I knew about Carly Rae since about 2008. She released a song called Sour Candy feat. Josh Ramsay (Lead singer of Marianas Trench. MY FAVORITE BAND! Seen them 11 times in concert, soon to be 12! Own all albums and yeah. Love them) and I instantly fell in love with her soulful voice and the way she could do an amazing duet. She was a folk singer back then and it suited her. She could write about anything and make it sounds amazing in a song. She then went back into the studio and worked again with Josh Ramsay (He’s kinda amazing. Singer, Songwriter, Producer, Comedian, Actor, and has blue hair!) and co-wrote a song that probably helped yet ruined her career. Call Me Maybe. The song I now HATE! It was released September 11, 2011. A year later Justin Bieber decided to go home to Canada (Can we just ban him from the U.S and Canada. Because he gives both bad names and he’s ruining some of my favorite artists.) and while on his trip was listening to the radio and heard her song. Then he signed her. Which was the BIGGEST Mistake of her life. She had very little following in the states (Other than states that bordered Canada because we get Canadian stations, or people who knew Marianas Trench and that they worked and toured with her and shared a label together). She now has lost most of her band and on her first headlining tour could not sell tickets. Also she did a FREE Toronto show recently and only 6 people (Other than promoters and club owners) showed up. Not exactly sure how her Broadway gig went but that a whole other story. With Summer she Lost Postcards and Made references that they weren’t selling tickets on some stops of their tour.

She also fell in love twice and dated two band guys. I can relate to this but not too much. I have yet to date a band guy (Still trying) but I recently met a band (On Halloween actually) and one of the members came up to me and introduced himself. We talked a bit but then he had to go set up. Since then I’ve kinda been obsessed with his band and may have some strong feelings for him. Whoops.

This book was a wirlwind of emotions, with the characters and surroundings. I loved the scene where Caleb and Summer finally go see Pluto (I agree, Pluto will always and forever be a planet in my eyes. #9PlanetsFOREVER!). It’s so romantic and no mater what those two are feeling they can always reconcile from whatever fight they had and fall in love with each other over and over again.

I mostly loved/disliked all the twists and turns. I disliked (More Hatred than dislike) them because when something happened my mind would always go towards a certain way (Ex. When Summer was finding Out information about Val. Was pretty positive Kellen was Val’s Dad and that she was secretly working with him to get Allegiance to North’s Eli White’s secret songs.). That Was NOT the case at all. Because of these twists and turns I probably threw this book across the room one too many times and wanted to punch walls after I finished the book.

Also I loved the little back story with Eli White. Misunderstood Rock Star who killed himself (Or may not have). It reminded me a lot about the tragic loss of Kurt Cobain. And now that they are re-opening his case there is a lot of  resemblances going on with that part of the story (And Yes I’m showing my age referencing Kurt Cobain. I was a baby when he passed but I grew up learning about his passing. And Yes I am positive Courtney Love Killed Him.).

After I finished the book, I contacted Kevin Emerson via Twitter to let him know I loved/hated his book and need the sequel soon. (This is the Harry Potter books all over again. Waiting for the next one!) After a little bit of Facebook stalking on his page and his website I found that Kevin Emerson created a band called Northern Allies and recorded three songs from the book.

On My Sleeve was absolutely perfect. It gave me chills while Listening. It’s exactly how I pictured the song. Perfect harmonies. Starting slow then speeding up a bit but keeping true to the song he wrote in the book. I fell in love with that song, the same way Summer did.

Catch Me is a great song. It shows who Val is. Although for the recording I was picturing a more Dominate Female voice. Someone who could get more angrier in their voice. I was picturing female Voices like Amy Lee (Evanescence), or Suzie McNeil (Canadian Artist). And I would like to hear a little more harmonies with “Caleb’s” voice too.

The Final Song Exile. The lyrics the composition is just perfect. I would like to see some more recordings of this though. (Three to be exact). The First being the version Eli White plays in the Tapes. Just basic. One Man singing and playing an acoustic guitar. The Second being Allegiance To North (Full band) recording it. (Even though in the book they never did. But it would be really cool to hear that version.) Then the final version being Dangerheart performing it. (Although I am not sure if they do or not because the other two books are not out yet! You’re killing me Kevin!)

But regardless of what I pictured or want, I have to give you MAJOR props Kevin Emerson. No author that I have read has wrote a book about music and then went on to create a band and record those songs you wrote about. (Except those books that ended up turning into a movie. Ex. If I Stay.) If you ever record the other songs (Songs by Android Necktie, Allegiance to North, The Rest of Dangerheart’s Songs, and Freak Show) I may or may not be broke from buying all the songs.

This book is Definitely a 5 Star Book for me. And I will recommend it to anybody who asks!  Congrats Kevin. You are Tops in my eyes!

And I will be blogging about Kevin Emerson and his Books and his band Northern Allies in the future, so keep an Eye out.

You can buy Exile at Amazon or Barnes and Noble (Or any bookstore.). And you can purchase the soundtrack Here: http://exilesoundtrack.bandcamp.com/

~AshleyxArsenic

Warped Wednesday: Week 1

Hey all. I’ll be posting all new updates on Warped Artists from now through warped.

First Off Ghost Town:
Yesterday (May 6th) Ghost Town Announced their Second Studio Album Release.
‘The After Party’ Comes out June 10th. If you pre-order now, you get a new song every Tuesday until the release date. If you’re in the UK you can pick up the album June 3rd, a week early.

This week you get the new version of ‘You’re So Creepy’.

Pre – Order on Itunes Here: ‘The After Party’ – Ghost Town Itunes Pre-Order

Pre – Order Bundles: Ghost Town Store

You can currently catch Ghost Town on the ‘Red, White and Black Tour’ with I See Stars. 4/22-5/17 Ghost Town heads back to the UK for the ‘Back In the UK Tour’ from 5/24-6/04.
Then you can catch them on Warped Tour performing on the Monster Energy stage from 6/13-7/13. Then they will be hitting the west coast on there headlining ‘Road Home from Warped Tour’ from 7/15-7/25.

Visit Ghost Town’s Website or Ghost Town’s Facebook for all dates and ticket links.

They also released their new music video for ‘You’re So Creepy’. Watch below.

Second Off This Wild Life:
The Acoustic Band made up of Kevin Jordan and Anthony Del Grosso release their first studio album on May 27th. They recently signed with Epitaph Records who the record will be released through.

You can pre – order the Regular version and the deluxe version of Clouded right here on Itunes

Regular: ‘Clouded’ – This Wild Life Itunes Pre-Order
Deluxe: ‘Clouded’ Deluxe Edition – This Wild Life Itunes Pre-Order

You can also get pre-order bundles here along with some other really cool merch:
Bundles: This Wild Life Store

This Wild Life started their Australian tour with Jonny Craig today. It goes from 5/8-5/18. Then they will be on Warped Tour on the WARHEADS Stage from 6/13-8/03. After that the only other tour announced is their tour with Tonight Alive in the UK from 11/24-11/30.

You can go to their website or their facebook for full dates and ticket links.
Website: This Wild Life’s Website
Facebook: This Wild Life’s Facebook

When you pre-order their album you get two automatic downloads of their songs ‘History’ and ‘Roots and Branches (Meant To Be Alone)’. You can hear those songs below.

History:

Roots And Branches (Meant To Be Alone):

Lastly We Are the In Crowd.

We Are the In Crowd have been nominated for Macy’s I Heart Radio Rising Star award. This is a huge competition and could do wonders for the band. Last Year The Summer Set won this contest and are no being played on Top 40 Radio Stations along with world tours. The Summer Set is on the Main Stage for Warped this year.

You can catch We Are The In Crowd on Warped tour from 6/13-8/03 on the WARHEADS Stage. They will be sharing the same stage as This Wild Life.

You can vote for We Are the In Crowd 50 times a day for the Rising Star Contest. Link Below:

Macy’s I Heart Radio Rising Star Contest – We Are The In Crowd Profile

That is it for this weeks Warped Wednesday. More next week! ❤

~AshleyxArsenic
BandsBooksandBlogsNY

Our Favorite Albums of 2013!

There were many amazing albums that came out this year! Here are our favorites that we recommend that you get!! *Note: They are in order of release date. Not how much we like them.*

1) Vessel – Twenty One Pilots

 

2) True North – Bad Religion

3) A Messenger – Colton Dixon

4) This Is How The Wind Shifts – Silverstein

5) Native – OneRepublic

6) Collider – Cartel

7) Renacer – Senses Fail

8) Sempiternal – Bring Me The Horizon

9) Save Rock & Roll – Fall Out Boy

10) Legendary – The Summer Set

11) Sibera (Acoustic) – Lights

12) Ungrateful – Escape The Fate

13) Feel – Sleeping With Sirens

14) J.A.C.K – Forever The Sickest Kids

15) Collapsible Lung – Relient K

16) Don’t Look Down – Skyler Grey

17) From Death to Destiny – Asking Alexandria

18) Overnight – Parachute

19) Hollow Bodies – BlessTheFall

20) The 1975 – The 1975

21) Tattoos – Jason Derulo

22) Rise – A Skylit Drive

23) Common Courtesy – A Day To Remember

24) Too Weird To Live, Too Rare to Die! – Panic! At the Disco

25) Monsters in the Closet – Mayday Parade

26) Frame By Frame – Cassadee Pope

27) Prism – Katy Perry

28) The Marshall Mathers LP2 – Eminem

29) Heart Flip – This Wild Life (Re-Release)

30) You Vs. The World – Peace Mercutio

31) Party In The Graveyard – Ghost Town

32) Face The Music – Marianas Trench

 

~AshleyxArsenic

Free Music!

Amazon is holding a 25 days of Free Music!! All Holiday but what better to get in the mood.

I personally Recommend All Time Low’s Fool’s Holiday
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00G2SOSZW/ref=dm_dp_trk2

 

But here is the link to all the free downloads this month.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/search/ref=gb1h_tit_c-4_4382_8e680db6?node=3301064011&smid=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_t=701&pf_rd_s=center-new-4&pf_rd_r=1KWE6A10XD0Q2V30CYK3&pf_rd_i=20&pf_rd_p=1671394382

Alluring Turmoil by Skye Turner

Rating: R – sexual content

Eight years ago, Lexi was broken. She pieced her broken heart back together the best she could and became a successful business owner with her childhood best friend, Erick. Life is going well for Lexi until Bayou Stix comes to town. Bradi, Lexi’s female best friend, convinces Lexi to go to the concert with her. Bradi learns that Lexi and Erick have a history with Jude, the front man for Bayou Stix.

 

One thing I really liked about the characters in Alluring Turmoil is you can relate to them. There are broken hearts, love, want, rock star life, and much more. I think everyone can find a character they can relate to. There are times in Alluring Turmoil that make you laugh, tear up, and yell at characters (in your mind if you’re reading it in public). The story goes quickly and gets you hooked, but not so quick that half way through you have nothing.

 

Alluring Turmoil is a great read. I would suggest this book to anyone over the age of 18 because of the sexual content. Speaking of sexual content, Skye Turner keeps the sex scenes interesting. She doesn’t write the same scene over and over again, she mixes it up and makes you wonder what they’ll do next time.

 

Alluring Turmoil leaves you with a sense of awe and love. This book is well written and a wonderful love story. This book will also teach you to not assume things. It’s always better to ask questions. I highly suggest you pick up a copy of Alluring Turmoil if you like love stories and rock stars!

 

Happy Reading!

Danielle/youramcaffeine

Emery’s The Weak’s End 10 Year Anniversary Tour

I’m a girl who goes for opening bands. (Sorry Emery. Love yah but You picked one of my fave bands to open for you). So when I heard This Wild Life was one of the opening bands for Emery’s tour, I did not hesitate to buy tickets.

A very sweet awesome friend, in cali, (Ruth C. for those who know her.) introduced me to them over a year ago and I fell in love. There music was so real and easy to sing along too. At the time I was financially unstable and she being the sweetheart she is bought me one of there packages. A t-shirt, cd, poster and sticker. Thank you again for that. I still owe you basically my life.

I asked my best friend to go. She had never been to these types of concerts and a concert to me so it was a long shot but she agreed and I showed her all the music from the band and she fell in love just as much as I did. So we planned our entire day.

We first went to breakfast at ihop. This was a day for trying new things. Neither of us had been so we just took the plunge. And let me tell you. Ihop over denny’s. I will never go to denny’s again. Ihop is cheaper and the quality of food is amazing!! My bf and I both got Mountain Dew (Because its awesome) 2 eggs, hash browns (which were amazing!! and I don’t usually like hash browns), and 4 huge slices of bacon (she got sausage.) along with a stuffed french toast topped with whipped cream and strawberries. And for the 2 of us it was under $20. We felt like we were robbing Ihop so we tipped them extra.

We then headed back to my house to get ready. Of course it being Halloween we were dressing up.  We had no specific costume, but more of a random assortment of ourselves. I wore my This Wild Life t-shirt, pants (obviously), converse, rainbow tutu, rainbow bead necklace, and a Luigi hat. She wore mostly the same but with a Mario hat. And I teased both of our hair.

We went to cici’s pizza for lunch and bought This Wild Life tons of goodies. It was Anthony’s birthday the other day and Everybody deserves a cake on there birthday so why not.

Before the show, (So I didn’t have to carry around all the things) I got in contact with the band. I found them hanging around the back of the venue by there van. I only saw Kevin at first (Singer, Guitarist). So i handed him the bag of goodies and we just chatted. Finally after a few minutes Anthony came around (Guitarist, back vocals.). He went to use the bathroom elsewhere because the bar’s was disgusting (true story). He was laughing because a band gace him a flyer for a show they were having. They were called satin’s butthole. (we were laughing at this for a bit). I then handed him his cake and he got so excited like a 4 year old in a candy store. Nobody on the tour or friends got him a cake. He was joking and saying his mission by the end of the night was to devour the entire cake with nobody else getting a piece. We hung out some more. (about 30 minutes), watched them play Frisbee (and almost break someones car light. Whoops. And myself almost getting hit in the head by the Frisbee. Thanks Kevin for that! And Thanks Anthony for jumping in front of it.). I also met Andy from Peace Mercutio outside and he was super nice and awesome too. They went inside for sound check and we went to the line.

First up was Peace Mercutio. I had never heard of them before but they were AWESOME!! Very funny guys and they walked right into so many gay jokes it was ridiculous. I would in a heartbeat see them again.

After them part of Emery came on and did a few of there songs acoustics and answered questions.

Then obviously the moment I was waiting for. This Wild Life Performing. The Played Ripped Away, Pink Tie, Puppy Love, Roots and Branches and a new song (I believe it was called Over You). Standing there watching them and singing along is what I love. And watching them catch a glimpse of myself and my friend singing along and seeing the smiles that instantly grow on their faces warmed my heart.

After there set of course it was merch buying time! We stood and waiting for them to come out (since yes, THEY SELL THERE OWN MERCH! Shocker! lol). Anthony came running and hugged me and said “I saw you singing along! Thank you so much!” I bought 2 t-shirts and the re-release of Heart Flip. $21 for everything but Anthony was only going to charge me $20. I’m used to paying a lot more than that for band merch. So I handed him $30 and told him to keep it. He was trying to hand it back but I would not allow it. Like I said in a previous post and I say everyday, I know how much certain bands I listen to are struggling. Especially with these two. Its just Anthony and Kevin with little money. So If I can throw in a few extra dollars than you know what I will. And that’s exactly what I did.

I then bought some Peace Mercutio stuff. I got 2 cds. I passed on the t-shirts because well I have enough (but then today I ended up ordering one. Ha!).

We then went to see Emery’s set. Fucking Amazing! No pictures since we hung in the back. To much moshing up front. And the last time I was in a mosh (Just a few weeks ago) my entire back gave out.

When we left we said goodbye to Anthony and Kevin and thanked them for everything. We gave them hugs and just chatted a little longer.

I always say this about concerts but it was one of the best nights of my life.

Concerts are my therapy and they help me through each day. Cannot wait for another one.

Thanks again for everything Kevin and Anthony. This Wild Life for life! ❤

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Supporting Bands.

As most people know, I am a huge promoter of supporting bands and musicians you like. I am a huge supporter of Marianas Trench, Ghost Town, SayWeCanFly, Consider Me Dead and Mayday Parade (Just to name a few. I support a lot of other bands also like Fall Out Boy, Panic! At The Disco, and many many more, but I’m talking more along the lines of lesser known bands).

These five bands in particular, I would do anything and everything to support them. I own all of their albums and 90% of their merch and have had the pleasure of seeing 3 of them 1 or more times in concert.

(Marianas Trench: Seen them 10 times in concert. Own Tons of t-shirts, signed posters, tour posters, wristbands, 3 copies of every album, Vinyl and many more. Also have bought friends and fans merch since they could not afford it. Had the pleasure of Interviewing them and having lunch with them.
Ghost Town: Seen them 3 times in concert. Own 7 t-shirts. 7 wristbands. 2 cds. Stickers. Every itunes single and acoustic that was not on their cd. Also have bought friends and fans merch since they could not afford it.
SayWeCanFly: Seen Braden once in concert. Just ordered a Physical copy of his new EP Heaven is Hell and Signed Poster. Own All of his eps/singles on itunes.
Consider Me Dead: Have not seen them in concert yet. Own itunes copies of both of their eps. Bought physical copy of album and poster.
Mayday Parade: Never Seen them in concert yet. Own all of their albums. 1 t-shirt. Necklace and bracelet. Tattoos and stickers. etc. )

Since The Bryan Stars tour where I saw Ghost Town for the third time and SayWeCanFly for the first time, I have been talking with Braden. He is by far one of the sweetest people I have had the pleasure to met. Recently I told him about how I have his entire catalog of itunes music and paid a few dollars more on his merch (since the website glitched and I couldn’t get the package). He tweeted me very sweet and grateful things. I completely understand he as well as other artists are just saying these things to be nice to there fans but with him, as well as the other lesser known bands I support, I know he truly means it from the heart.

If I can spare $1 to help these people accomplish their dreams, then guess what, I’m going to do it. Even if it’s my last dollar. I am not rich. But I do bust my ass at my “day” job. If I could leave that job and be paid to promote I would do it in a heartbeat. But I know as of right now that will not happen. But I did do a little calculation recently, on just an average amount of what I have spent on these bands. Not hundreds but Thousands of dollars. Between merch, music, travel, lodging, food, and tickets. I could probably pay back all of my student loans with what I spent. But you know what. I don’t give a flying fuck! I know I’m supporting them and It makes me so happy. And If I get an autograph or a photo in return, or even just to meet these people, I’m more than happy.

So Please! Support the bands you love. Whether you can afford to buy some of their merch or music, or if you can only spread the word about them. Do It! Work of mouth goes a long way.

Stay Strong Kids. ❤

~AshleyxArsenic