4/6 Florida Rules Fest, United Blood Fest, New Music from Gouge Away

Florida Rules Fest typically takes place in the beginning of the summer season. This festival serves as a showcase of some of the best local acts from across the state. The Florida Rules lineup normally is dominated by hardcore bands, but this year bill includes a variety of genres. The announced lineup includes heavier bands like Three Knee Deep, Guttwrench, Madtown, Cemetery Circles, and Refocus. Some of the more emo-geared bands include Pushover, Shurwood, Awkward Age, and Disdain.

Florida Rules Fest previously has taken place in Tampa at Transitions Art Gallery, a famous DIY venue. However, since the closing of Transitions, the festival will now take place at a newer venue called the Noise Box. While the venue is technically a religious space, it has quickly become the new replacement for Transitions. Tampa has continued to provide spaces for local music to thrive despite costs. Florida Rules Fest will take place on July 7.

United Blood Fest in Richmond, Virginia is taking place on April 8 and 9.  Many Florida hardcore bands were included on this year’s bill, including popular up-and-coming band Day by Day. United Blood is popular with the Florida music community, as it is a model structure for a self-made music scene. Florida fans flock to Virginia once a year to make lifelong friends in the scene.

Another South Florida hardcore band similar to Day by Day, Gouge Away, recently released two new singles through Noisey magazine. The Fort Lauderdale four-piece has been on an indefinite hiatus from their cult following for close to a year now. The release of  new music was not hinted at prior to the release, making it a total surprise for fans. Gouge Away is a staple among the vegan community, as their music touches on topics of animal cruelty and rights.

Listen to the new Gouge Away tracks on their Bandcamp here

3/21/17 Swamp Records Showcase, Warped Tour Lineup Release

Summer is approaching quickly, meaning that festival season in Florida is coming soon. Agreeable weather and time off from responsibilities gives young adults and kids more time to participate in the music scene. Florida is a hot spot for festivals and large music events during this time of the year. The month of March is the time when many events are announced.

A local summer induction is the Swamp Records showcase of local artists. The showcase serves to commemorate the end of the spring semester and beginning of summer break. Swamp is working in conjunction with Heartwood Soundstage, the new venue that hosted the Heartwood Music Festival. Although the lineup has not been released, Swamp Records members are hard at work with Heartwood staff to make the venue presentable for a large crowd. Members and staff have been cleaning on weekends and organizing the venue in order for the venue to handle a successful turnout.

In addition to the Swamp Records showcase, Warped Tour has been announced for three dates in Florida. The tour will be stopping at Tinker Field in Orlando on June 30, Vinoy Park in St. Petersburg on July 1, and the Perfect Vodka Amphitheater in West Palm Beach on July 2. Florida is one of the most populated stops for Warped Tour, with thousands of tickets sold for each date in the past.

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Warped Tour’s lineup release revealed that many of the featured artists are classics. Some of these artists include GWAR, Hatebreed, CKY, Sick of it All, and The Adolescents. While Warped Tour typically focuses on bringing new artists to their fans, these bands represent an older fanbase and the roots of the festival.

Some new and growing artists that are being featured on Warped Tour are Boston Manor, Knocked Loose, Trophy Eyes, and Movements. These bands reached their first successes in 2016, making them fresh to the music scene. Warped Tour provides these bands with the opportunity to grow their success by the sides of classic artists such as the ones mentioned previously. The tour is a system to unite old and new fans and keep the music scene in many locations strong and united across genres.

3/15/17 Counterparts, Movements, Moose Blood, Gasparilla Music Festival

March has been a busy month in music for Florida. Although Spring is perhaps the slowest time of the year for touring bands, we have been fortunate enough to have many big acts visit the state this month. The Orpheum, Local 662, and the 1904 Music Hall have been hosting the most sold out shows throughout march.

On the 5th, O’Malley’s Sports Bar in Margate hosted Moose Blood, Trophy Eyes, and Boston Manor. Moose Blood has blown up recently in emo and alternative rock, with close to a million total plays on Spotify. They are currently on Hopeless Records. Moose Blood hails from Canterbury, Kent in the United Kingdom, making them far from home while visiting South Florida.

Movements and Counterparts are also currently touring together, stopping at the Orpheum in Tampa. This is an unusual lineup, as Movements is classified as emo, while Counterparts is bridging the gap between hardcore and metalcore. Many emo and hardcore fans have an overlap in musical interests, making this show a great success despite the difference in genres.

On March 11-12, the Gasparilla Music Festival came to Tampa. Both dates sold out according to the festival’s website. This event hosted close to 50 bands, including Cage the Elephant and Moon Taxi. The festival is a charity event that funds music in the Tampa area. Ticket prices go to providing children in the public school system with musical instruments, paying for scholarships, and advancing music education.

3/10/17 Losing Teeth- new music, tour, new merch

Tampa Emo locals Losing Teeth have been busy in recent months. After releasing their EP Houses a year ago in 2016, the band has been playing shows and tours, but hasn’t given any updates on new music. However, the band has been hard at work with new announcements.

In 2016, Losing Teeth played South by So What fest in Dallas, Texas, as well as Vans Warped Tour in St. Petersburg, Florida. This brought the band to the attention of many new fans. Houses achieved around 3,000 plays on Spotify. After many runs through Florida, fans are wondering if Losing Teeth has anything coming up for the new year.

In 2017, Losing Teeth is bringing a new EP to fans. The music video for the first single, Maryland, was released with the help of local videographer Evan Draper. Maryland may be the staple track of the band’s upcoming release.

Losing Teeth recently announced a tour with North Carolina pop-punk band The Second After. The tour starts April 7 in North Carolina, runs through South Carolina and Georgia, and Ends in Margate, Florida. The tour is much anticipated, as the last tour Losing Teeth went on was in October of 2016.

Losing Teeth also has new merch in production. Port Richie tattoo artist Cody Hammond of Electric Heritage Tattoo has designed new shirts and pullovers for the band. His original art being used is a great way for the band to give back to local artists.

Losing Teeth has additionally begun petitioning to join the St. Petersburg date of the Vans Warped Tour. Losing Teeth was elected to play Warped Tour entirely through fan voting last year. Through the participation of their fans in the voting this year, the band has a great shot at playing this event again. Use this link to vote for Losing Teeth: http://warped.amplifiertv.com/channel/Losing+Teeth

February 2017- Expire’s Last Tour

Hardcore fans know Expire as one of the best acts in the genre. Their high energy performances and crowd involvement are unforgettable. The band formed in 2009 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and has been touring for almost five years. Hardcore super label Bridge 9 picked up the act in the beginning of their career, giving them many opportunities to play sold out shows and tour with popular bands like Terror and Bent Life.

Being from Milwaukee, Expire belongs to the group of midwestern bands that refer to themselves as Midwest Blood. Midwest Blood Fest has attracted thousands of hardcore fans, creating a super-fandom for Expire. As their last tour approached, many shows sold out. Expire fans are ready to go wild one last time for a band that has been active in the scene for over 8 years.

I attended Expire’s date at the Local 662 in St. Petersburg, Florida. Although it was a Monday night, the line to get into the show wrapped around the venue. I recognized many people who go to shows of many genres around Florida. Expire seems to be a connecting artist between those who listen to traditional hardcore and those who lean more toward metalcore.

Homewrecker, Cross Me, and Florida local artist Bind, opened the show. I love that Expire chose these bands to come on the road with them. They are smaller artists who now have a much bigger opportunity for success because of this tour.

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It seemed that many people were conserving their energy for Expire’s set. I was right. When Expire finally came out, everyone went crazy. The best part of this show was watching fans take the microphone and sing, or pile up when the vocalist was at the edge of the stage. The energy was unlike anything I’ve ever seen. I could tell that Expire would be missed very much.

This show really blew me away. Seeing Expire one last time proved to me that they deserved all the recognition over the last few years. This band loves their fans and has inspired every person who hears their music to participate more in their local music scene.

2/18/17 Heartwood Sound Stage, Madtown, Adaliah, The Delta Troubadours

Up and coming Tampa hardcore band Madtown has just announced a seven-date tour through Florida and the east coast with Tampa hardcore staple Adaliah. This is a big announcement for Madtown, as Adaliah is a big act in Florida metal. The tour makes stops in North Carolina, Virginia, and South Carolina, among three Florida dates. Music photographer Ana Perez created a promotion video for this tour, which can be seen here

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In Gainesville music news, many artists and industry workers are preparing for the opening of Heartwood Sound Stage. This new music venue is the creation of  David Melosh, owner of Medusa Productions and Recording Studios in Gainesville. The opening event, Heartwood Music Festival, features many local acts. The current lineup features many Swamp Records artists and alumni, such as Bells and Robes, Flatland, and The Delta Troubadours (formerly known as Gritt). Tickets for the Heartwood Music Festival can be purchased in advance for $10.

The Delta Troubadours will also be playing Okeechobee Music & Arts Festival in the first week of March. The Swamp Records team assigned to The Delta Troubadours won this opportunity for the artist through campaigning and fan voting. This is the second year in a row that Swamp has campaigned one of their artists to the Okeechobee festival through voting. Swamp Records is hosting a contest for one student to win free tickets to the festival. By sending $5 to the organization’s Venmo account, you are entered into the raffle to receive a three day pass.

The Changeville social change festival is approaching soon as well. This event takes place from March 2-3 and features Talib Kweli, Big Freedia, Amy Ray of the Indigo Girls, and several more artists. Changeville is organized by the University of Florida’s WUFT media as well as UF’s Frank gathering. Much of the Changeville festival is arranged by students, making it a major event for music industry hopefuls in the area.

Welcome to the FL Scene

This is my first post on the Florida Scene and I wanted to start out by introducing my main  goals with this blog.

First of all, I wanted this blog to be a news source for current events. Finding local music is a bit disorganized. I wanted to create a space where releases are catalogued for local listeners to find. Keeping a chronological database of independent artist releases and updates is one of the main focuses of this blog.

I also wanted to create a memory box for those who are engaged in Florida independent music. I know that one day I may look back at this time and wish I had more concise details about what I was listening to. I wanted to provide a place where listeners can check to see progress of their favorite bands and feel connected to them.

This blog serves to preserve music in a completely do-it-yourself context. I hope this content is a reliable, timely, and accurate source of local releases and a place to look back into the timeline and reflect. The Florida Scene should preserve a sense of community among listeners and those who support their favorite artists.

I believe the main issue with local music currently is lack of hands-on involvement. By uniting fans, I believe more participation will result. The music community is build entirely on the support of fans and volunteers. This blog serves to provide supporters with inspiration to come together and help artists in their community.

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