Last year among the finalists, Goddamn Draculas took home the crown in an avalanche of punk anthems and booze, Petty Morals became the music scene’s synth-punk darlings, and Await Rescue blitzed their way through the unlikeliest playoff run since the ’69 Miracle Mets, but perhaps the biggest success overall was Maine rock duo When Particles Collide, who turned enough heads to advance to the semi-finals as a wild card and gained a significant following in Boston.
When Particles Collide began the Rumble as relative unknowns. By year’s end, they were named New Artist of the Year in the 2014 Boston Music Awards.
“Participating in the 2014 Rock and Roll Rumble changed a lot for When Particles Collide,” says guitarist/vocalist Sasha Alcott. “Not only were we embraced by the other bands in the Rumble, the press covering the event, and rock fans who came out to the shows, but we also improved musically as a band. When the Rumble chooses you to participate you owe it to the organization, the other bands, the fans and the individuals who are busting their hump night after night, to become the professional band that you have yet to be.”
As When Particles Collide prepare for their record release party May 29 at the Middle East, today Vanyaland takes a look at the bands playing this year’s Rumble that don’t list Boston as their home base. Of the 24 bands set to battle next week at T.T. The Bear’s Place, 13 identify as Boston bands on social media, while three rep Somerville (Eternals, Psychic Dog, Soft Pyramids), and claims a true home field advantage of Cambridge (Dirty Bangs).
Here’s who’s coming to town from beyond those borders.
We’ve written about Rhode Island’s answer to the Arctic Monkeys roughly 106 times in the past two years on Vanyaland, and we’ll reiterate that this young rock band has what it takes to win the ’15 Rumble title. They played our SXSW party with Berklee last year, and their cover of Disclosure’s “Latch” is batshit bonkers.
Mister Vertigo split their time between Boston and New Hampshire’s version of Salem, so we’ll include them here for the purpose of this exercise. We were first exposed to the band a few years ago via their cover of Morrissey’s “Every Day Is Like Sunday”, and any band that covers Moz (and does it well) is a-o-fucking-kay with us. Pro tip: Always cover Morrissey.
Yes, Charlestown is technically part of Boston, and sometimes people literally get drunk in Boston, fall down, and somehow land in Charlestown. But Hollywood recognizes it as a separate utopia and so do we. Every Rumble needs a good punk band to shake shit up, and Duck & Cover — featuring members of Coffin Lids, The Acro-brats, Bang Camaro, Black Cheers, Vampire Lezbos, The Throwaways, The Drags, Wild Zero, and a probably billion other bands — have the Boston pedigree to cause some damage to both our collective eardrums and the easy-bake semi-final lineups.
Jangly, feel good surf-rock from the shores that gave us Wollaston Beach comes Le Roxy Pro, a project headed up by the Wandas’ Brent Battey. The loose, breezy seven-minute pop tune “Coral Coralles” was one of our favorite tracks of 2014 to come out of not just Boston, but anywhere. Biggest reason to root for Battey and company: they’ll be partying down at Maggy’s Lounge if Le Roxy Pro advance to the next round.
Murcielago follow When Particles Collide’s lead out of Maine, only these stoner cats call Portland home as opposed to Bangor. You’d think they were based out in some barren desert landscape with their penchant for riffs and classic rock bluesin’, but then again Maine’s always on its own shit. Lamborghini tells us Murcielago is Spanish for “bat.” That’s pretty Maine right there.
Burlington may be known for is mall, the hometown of actress Amy Poehler, and for being a very lovely host to the better parts of Route 128, but it’s also developing some musical talent. The Dirty Looks have ties to last year’s Rumble participant the Color & Sound, so they know a thing or two around the TTs stage.
When Anngelle Wood played all the Rumble bands on Boston Emissions line-up announcement show a few weeks ago, New City Ghost was the band that caught our attention the most. We were updating our lineup post as the bands were played, but got stumped by this explosive rock band that balance along state lines, calling both Cumberland, Rhode Island, and Attleboro, Mass., home. Chances are you drove past them on I-95 that one time.