Wednesday, July 31, 2013

2013 Summer Mead Fest

A few years ago at the  DIY Stret Fair I tried mead for the first time and once I had a sip of the sweet honey taste, I was hooked. Ever since then I always look forward to getting myself a glass during DIY. What I didn't realize is that I could attend another festival this summer in Ferndale that is centered around mead and get my fix a little sooner.

This Saturday, August 3rd B. Nektar is celebrating its 5th Anniversary with the 2013 Summer Mead Festival. This event features mead by the glass, 3 outdoor bars, and live music by Almost Free, The Kickstand Band, and Johnny Ill Band. They will be releasing a new mead this year called The Zombies Take Manhattan, which is described as an aged rye whiskey mead. They will also feature the new Black Fang, Strawberries Love mead, and the return of Cherry Chipotle, a local favorite. This festival is free to 21 and over and is located at 1505 Jarvis in Ferndale. Come by and experience the sweet taste of mead for yourself!


Tuesday, July 30, 2013

The Gator - Record Release Show

A few months ago we introduced you to Allison Hanna, better known as The Gator. At the time she had decided to take her act solo and was gearing up to record a new album with a little help from a Kickstarter campaign that featured a video about her and what she wanted to do. She asked her fans to help support her solo effort and in turn she would get them a copy of the album once it was finished and released. People must have believed in what she wanted to do because not only did she reach her goal, but she achieved it with days to spare on her campaign.

She immediately got to work and wrote, recorded, and produced her album with the help of a few friends. She spent hours in her home studio fine tuning the songs, sounds, and the lineup of the album until she was happy with the final result. Once the recording process was finished, she had it pressed into vinyl and called it Amateur Cartography. Allison is an inspiring person with an enviable work ethic.What has taken other artists years to do took her less than one year to complete.

We asked The Gator to tell us a little more about the process behind the album and for details about the album release show featuring Fires in Japan and Due North this Sunday at PJ's Lager House. Here's what she had to say.

Hip In Detroit - How did it feel when you reached your Kickstarter goal?
The Gator - "The actual moment it happened, I was watching Simpsons with my roommate on a Sunday evening, and there was disbelief at first. Then I was overwhelmed and pretty relieved. I was relieved because I was going to make the album either way, and reaching the goal meant that I had a solid path to creating and manufacturing the album on the timetable I’d designed for myself.
It was also incredibly moving to get so much support. It was so nice to have something work out. Several of the backers’ donations were fairly substantial. Since that time, any time I have gotten a little frustrated, I immediately think of them and remember how much someone thought I was worth supporting. It’s quiet and special. Except for sharing this right now, I keep it to myself and I keep it in mind all the time."

Hip In Detroit - Where did you record the album?
The Gator - "I recorded the album myself in Drifting Sun Studios, which belongs to my very close friend (and then-roommate) Chuck Huber. It was also in the home where I lived at the time, so I would go work on the album any time I wasn’t at work. I used two mics to capture the acoustic guitar, one mic for vocals, DI for the couple of bass parts, and a couple more shotgun mics for percussion. All of the tracking was simple, and I recorded it all onto GarageBand. Then I moved everything into Logic and mixed it. I employed several friends’ ears as mixing assistants, and eventually got it right. Bill Henderson at Azimuth Mastering in New Jersey mastered the tracks, Aardvark Mastering made the lacquers, and then it was off to production. The tracks hit every corner of this country before we were done with them- from Michigan to California to New Jersey to Colorado to Florida to Tennessee to Washington to New York to Illinois… I got a lot of help along the way.
Vince Troia of Cheapshow, and Jordan Wright, Jordan Von Zynda, and Eric Plunkard of Due North all sang on the album as well. Basically, if you hear a pretty harmony on the album, that’s Jordan Wright. Jordan Von Zynda did almost all the percussion, with a little bit done by Greg Kreiling, my long-time music partner and best friend.
I did the whole thing myself because I had acquired all these skills over the years- from working in a studio, from recording in all kinds of studios, and from just fiddling around with DAWs at home- and I had run into a wall trying to record any other way."

Hip In Detroit - How long was the recording process?
The Gator - "I started officially tracking in late December of 2012 and finished mixing in late February 2013. My experience has always been that if it starts taking too long, you’re completely screwed and the album will either never be completed or it will end up awful. I pushed as hard as I could to stay on track and complete the music as expeditiously as I possibly could. Reflecting on it right now as we discuss this, of all the albums I have ever been a part of, I think I am most pleased with the process for this Gator album. Though I desperately missed doing it as a band. I liked not having to argue with anyone, though!"

Hip In Detroit - How many songs made it to the album?
The Gator - "The album has ten songs. Five on side A and five on side B. I enjoyed, as I always do, sculpting the album properly and making the track order coherent. The flow of the tracks on a proper album should tell an over-arching story. Different from a concept album, which I’ve also done in the past, a well-designed album needs to bring the listener into the story just the same as a great book would do. And especially on vinyl, the four corners are important: the first track of the first side, last track of the first side, first track of the second side, and last track of the second side. I am very happy with the choices I made, however I do see places where the songs themselves could have lent themselves better to their places. So I will have to write better songs for next time.
The first song on the first side wasn’t chosen for its sound, but rather for its opening line and for when I wrote the song and for its rebuilding sort of feel. The opening line is, “There was a time when all of this was the best night of my life.” I’m 30 now, and I wrote this a couple years ago after my last band, Utility Monster, had disbanded and I was once again not in a band. A weird thing happens when you’re a musician who is not in a band. You lose your spot. You lose where you thought you fit in. So I started the album there because it just seemed to say what I meant. I ended side A with a track that I just thought sounded cool ending with the sound of the needle picking up on the record player, so there isn’t much more to it than that.
Side B starts with a sort of old Western build. It's one of my favorite songs on the album, which, as the story always seems to go, almost didn’t even get recorded. Not just almost didn’t make it on the album, but truly I initially had no intention of recording it. But now it’s one of my favorites. Then side B ends with one of my most favorite songs, and a real barn-burner at that. Not to mention, it has everyone involved in the album singing and playing, so it’s a good way to end it.
I did write enough songs that I could cut a couple dozen, and that felt really healthy. When I was about 20 I realized that you have to write a whole lot of real shit before anything even remotely listenable starts to grow, so I guess I’m just glad I started so young. Cutting songs feels good. It feels like growth."

Hip In Detroit - What is the title of the album? Is there any significance to the name?
The Gator - "The title of the album is Amateur Cartography. It’s actually a phrase out of a Weakerthans song, called "Aside". It was actually the first Weakerthans song I ever heard, in 2002. The line always stuck out, and my sister, Marissa, and I used to laugh when we’d hear it. But as I would make the list of songs to include on the amorphous “next album” I wanted to make, it was obvious that they were all about not having a home. To be sure- I always had a physical house or apartment in which to live. I don’t mean to make it sound like I suffered on the streets. But I lost my home in 2009/10, then moved, and moved again, and moved again, and moved again, and moved again, and at no point could I grab back on and feel like I had a home.
The idea of not belonging to a place has always been part of how I relate to the world, but in the last few years it just manifested in such a face-slamming sort of way. It’s an experience a lot of us are having. And you can claw back at it for a while and try to dig your toes in and find a place, but eventually you just kind of say, ok, let’s see what kind of freedom this rootlessness offers. Every song on the album deals with the theme of home in one way or another. And I kept making mistakes with deciding where to move and where to go. Since that Weakerthans line was always in my head, it just seemed like the appropriate title. I don’t know. It just makes me laugh."
Hip In Detroit - Do you write the music or the lyrics to a song first?
The Gator - "It’s never the same for me. A few years ago I identified how the writing cycle works for me, so I think I can actually give you a decent answer for this one. First it gets to a point where I start to think I will never write another song, or I will have no ideas for songs at all, or I will suddenly be looking back and have no fucking clue how I ever wrote a single song or chord structure or how anyone else writes songs, for that matter. It’s never really panicked me, it’s just a downhill that comes around and the end/start of this writing cycle.
Then I start to get ideas for lines for songs. A few at first, often at times where I have no chance of writing them down or remembering them. At work, while driving, in dreams, often. But then I’ll manage to keep some and start keeping notes in text files on my computer. I have always written in text files on the computer. Notepad is my best friend. I have very occasionally hand-written some things, but I have horrendous handwriting, and also I can’t write as quickly as the words come out, and they get forgotten. But that’s the other thing- a lot of the ideas I get early on just get forgotten, and I have learned that that’s ok and it’s part of the cycle. Now I let them go more easily. Maybe someone else will catch them. But I collect all the lines in text documents titled “June Notes 2013” and stuff like that.
So the lyrics sit around. When I come up with some music, I will either pull some of these saved lines in to begin with, or I will start with some new lines that fit the music, and fill it in with the already-written lines. I like seeing what becomes of a line that I thought meant a very specific thing, when I take it and put it into the meter and context of something newer that is being written. Then I find out what it really meant. I don’t know. It’s kind of flaky, probably as flaky as I’m willing to readily admit to being, but I think that writing or creating art of any kind is all about being in the right state of mind to let it flow through you. That’s not meant to sound spiritual, or metaphysical, or self-important. It’s just that there is a lot of stuff going on in the world and if you sit down quietly and let it all affect you, it might come into your head and bounce around in your brain and come out the pen in a unique, once-and-for-all, hopefully artistic way."

Hip In Detroit - What inspired you to write this album?
The Gator - "The songs themselves had to happen. But making the album was a few different things. One was simply that If you are to be a serious musician, you record. I have always thought that. That’s why the first band we had in high school recorded when we were 15. I wanted The Gator to become a real thing, and I had wanted to do a solo album for a while, so I did. The other reason is that Chuck (Huber, Drifting Sun Studio owner) challenged me to complete the album in six months. That was what originally started the whole Kickstarter thing.
And as discussed, it’s a bunch of songs about home, and lack thereof, and replacement thereof."

Hip In Detroit - What can people expect to see and hear at the record release at the Lager House on August 4th?
The Gator - "So much fun. Fires in Japan and Due North are playing as well, and we’re also working on some songs to play together. Gator shows are usually just me and the guitar, and sometimes a lot of hand percussion handed out to any Due North gentlemen who show up and stand in the front. It’s going to be a big family party. Everyone is welcome. I don’t have birthday parties, I don’t throw parties, I didn’t have a Bat Mitzvah or graduation party, and I’m probably not going to get to have a wedding. So… come to the album release party? It’s going to be a great time. And PJ’s Lager House is just a great venue, with a great sound guy.
We’re going to dance and sing together. And everyone can still go home and go to bed and get up Monday morning and get to work just fine."

Hip In Detroit - Where will the album be up for sale once its out?
The Gator - "The album is currently at a few local record stores: Hello Records in Detroit (Corktown), Found Sound in Ferndale, Solo Records in Royal Oak, and Flipside in Clawson. It is also available at And most importantly, it’s always available at shows."

The show is $5 for 21+ and $7 for 18+. Copies of the record will be available for $8 at the merch table or can be bought online as Allison mentioned. The Lager House is located at 1254 Michigan Ave. in Detroit and doors for the show open at 8 p.m.


Two Free Reasons To Go Out This Thursday Night!!!

This Thursday night you have the chance to check out some of the most popular bands in Detroit right now, not to mention some of our favorites, at two great shows. The best part about these shows is that they are both free!

First up, The HandGrenades will be playing at 3rd Street Bar. This is part of a promotion that Metro Times and Dangerously Delicious Pies is putting on every Thursday evening throughout the summer. The show starts early, at 6:30 p.m., but the party starts before that even with Happy Hour beginning at 5:30. The HandGrenades will be joined on Thursday by Jessica Wildman and 3rd Street Bar will have drink specials running all the way until 9:30 p.m.

Sounds like the perfect reason to stop for a drink on your way home from work! And since this is all happening on a Thursday night and no one really works too hard on Fridays after all, you have no excuse to not head over to another free gig at The Shelter. This also seems to be a new weekly opportunity to catch some bands for free on Thursday nights. This weeks lineup includes George Morris, The ILL Itches, Craycrays and DJ Carjack. If you want to guarantee that you'll be able to get into this show, free tickets are available at UHF in Royal Oak or through the bands. Doors will open at 8 p.m. and the bands start at 9.

So it seems as though your Thursday evening is planned out pretty perfectly. Hit up The HandGrenades at 3rd Street then head over to The Shelter just in time for the bands to start there. Since admission is free, you'll have plenty of money for drinks too even if you don't get paid 'til Friday. For the details on the 3rd Street show click here. For all the info on The Shelter show, visit the Facebook event page here.


Monday, July 29, 2013

A Benefit Show for Fallen Firefighter Brian Woehlke

It is our honor to announce that this Saturday, August 3rd Hip In Detroit will be hosting a benefit show for the fallen firefighter and hero Brian Woehlke. To be able to help raise money for the family of a man who gave his life in service is the most amazing thing we have ever been asked to do. The fact that The Suicide Machines, Wilson, Heads Will Roll, PT's Revenge, Nick Ciolino, and Timmy Reynolds have joined up to play the event is just icing on the cake.

It's time for the Detroit music scene to come together and show the world that we can support each other in our times of need. We are a community and a family that has big hearts and small wallets, but when we all come together it adds up. It's $15 at the door to get in, but 100% of the proceeds raised will go to Brian's family. You can also contribute by buying raffle tickets for $1 each the night of the show. All of our favorite local businesses have contributed prizes for the raffle. Some of them include a night at the Greektown Casino Hotel, personal training with Mark Culpepper, tattoos from Signature and Big Top, Dirt Fest tickets, a gift from Embarco Entertainment, merchandise from The End Grain Woodworking Co., a gift certificate for Green Dot Stables (by far one of the best restaurants in Detroit), and other prizes from Live Nation. Could you imagine contributing $1 to help a family in need and getting a new tattoo out of it!?!?

Tickets for this great show at the Magic Stick can be purchase at or at the Garden Bowl prior to the date of the show with no service fees. Selling out a show and raising as much money as we can has never been more important! Bring your friends, bring your friends' friends, and make sure everyone buys at least one raffle ticket. We promise to be great hostesses and show you a good time!


Fun Times at Fort Wayne - Oakaloosa 2013

The first ever Oakaloosa Festival took place this past Saturday at the Historic Fort Wayne in Detroit. The festival featured 2 stages with acts ranging from Jessica Hernandez & The Deltas to Bone Thugs-N-Harmony. The weather wasn't exactly ideal for an outdoor festival, with storms and downpours happening throughout the day. It kept the crowds away for a big chunk of the day and put quite a delay on the main stage. We opted to go to other indoor shows until about 11 p.m. when we caught wind that Bone Thugs-N-Harmony was about to hit the stage and the rain seemed to be done for the night.

First off, Becca and I had never been to Fort Wayne before and most of the stories we had heard were from local ghost hunters MPI. So, I was pretty spooked out walking up to the festival. Way more buildings than I expected and there were obviously ghosts lurking everywhere... well at least in my mind.

Regardless, we walked up and could hear Bone Thugs on the stage and
we both immediately turned "gangsta". I'm not huge on rap, but who doesn't love these guys??? Even if you only like "1st of tha Month", you have to admit that song is pretty much awesome and you sing it to yourself on the first of every month. Bone Thugs-N-Harmony haven't aged a bit and put on a pretty awesome show. Definitely worth going to just to be able to say we've seen a Bone Thugs concert.

Up next was the headliner of the festival, Girl Talk. Only, there was a problem. Due to the delays through out the day, it was almost midnight at this point. There's a curfew in Detroit. So some poor guy got the horrible job of coming over the speakers and announcing that Girl Talk would not be performing for that reason. The crowd of a few hundred were not fans of that idea, but after chanting for long enough apparently the festival decided they didn't care about fines. So Girl Talk hit the stage with a storm of confetti and toilet paper. It was loud. It was fun. It was definitely a bigger party than Fort Wayne had ever seen before. Pretty fuckin' awesome.

Despite the rain and the less than desired numbers in the crowd, from what we saw, this festival was awesome. We really hope that the organizers of this event try to make it happen again in the future. It was a great open space for a show, with a really cool atmosphere of history around you and the Ambassador Bridge and Ren Cen in the distance as a backdrop. For the big acts on the bill, the price of about $50 really wasn't that bad and we loved that they mixed a lot of local acts like Kaleido, Jessica Hernandez & The Deltas and The Infatuations in there too. Our only complaints would be that the weather sucked and that we didn't get there sooner. But neither of those are the festivals fault! There were plenty of places to park, even free ones. Beer was pretty cheap. It was clean. It was fun. What more could you ask for in a festival? We hope next year Oakaloosa gives it a try again and can make it even bigger and better than this time around.


Win Tickets to The Legends of the Summer After Party

2013 will be known as the summer of Justin Timberlake and Jay Z. Their arena tour will likely be one of the highest grossing tours of this year. And both of their new albums, The 20/20 Experience and Magna Carta the Holy Grail will break sales records and be over played on the radio. If you were lucky enough to get tickets to the show on August 6, you are in for a treat. I have seen both of these acts before and neither of them will disappoint.

We can't get you into the arena, but we are giving three lucky people a chance to bring a friend and go to the official after party at Cheli's Chili Bar. This will feature Justin Timberlake's DJ Young Guru. You may remember Young Guru from the Watch The Throne Tour that filled arenas last year. He might be the back up for the big boys, but he can make a room dance all by himself. Twenty-one and up are welcome and there will also be a guest set by Drew 32. Tickets are $10 at the door. Doors open at 9:30 p.m. and the fun begins as soon as the lights go dim at the arena. Tickets are available in advance here. To enter to win a set of passes for the after party, email your name and address to We will draw winners at the end of the week and mail the tickets before the show. Do not miss out, enter to win now!


Friday, July 26, 2013

Mayhem Festival is Rolling Through Town this Sunday!!!

It has been the summer of festivals and this weekend Mayhem will be coming to DTE to put its mark on the summer of 2013. The lineup this year features Rob Zombie, Scorpion Child, Thrown Into Exile, Motionless in White, Mastodon, Job for a Cowboy, Five Finger Death Punch, Children of Bodom, Born of Osiris, local bad boys Battlecross, and more.

This is an all day event and doors for the festival open at 1 p.m. on Sunday July 28th. Tickets can be found on and range from about $28 to $94 before service fees.

We have always been a fan of this festival and have seen Rob Zombie play too many times to count. He always puts on a great show, and if you've never seen him, it's worth the ticket price just to catch him play. Remember DTE always has free parking and is the funnest place to tailgate before a show. So pack up the cooler, head out to DTE, and have a great time this Sunday!


Casting Call in Detroit for Spike TV's Ink Master

Now a days there seems like there is a reality TV show for everything. Whether you're a has been that's diving into a pool or you're a rich dude looking for "true love", America will eat it up. Despite the numerous corny and ridiculous programs out there, there are some reality shows that are pretty awesome. One of those shows is Ink Master and they are headed to town looking for Tattoo Artists for their next season.

Ink Master is a show on Spike TV that is hosted by Dave Navarro (Red Hot Chili Peppers & Janes Addiction) and judged by tattoo icons, Chris Nunez and Oliver Peck. Each season starts out with 16 artists that are put up to different tattoo challenges on every episode. Some of the challenges have included tattooing professional athletes, doing tattoos in a prison, and even art challenges that don't involve skin or a tattoo gun at all. At the end of the season one contestant is declared an "Ink Master" and wins the grand prize of $100,000. The show is currently airing it's third season now, but they are in pre-production for their fourth season, which is why they are heading to Detroit.

On Friday, August 5th, Ink Master will be holding an open casting call at the Westin Book Cadillac in downtown Detroit. They are looking for skilled Tattoo Artists that also have dynamic, outgoing personalities. As soon as we heard about this opportunity, several people came to mind that would be perfect for this show. Plus, who doesn't want the chance to win 100 grand!?!? And getting on the show would be pretty awesome all on it's own, not to mention some pretty great publicity (assuming you don't eff up too bad). If you are interested in trying to be on the show, August 5th's casting call will run from 10 a.m. 'til 2 p.m. Make sure you head to to fill out and print a copy of the application. You'll need to bring that with you to the Westin along with 2 photos of yourself and 10 shots of your best work. If you aren't able to make it out to the call, don't get to upset. There is also an option to submit a video online. All of the details on that can be found here.

We really hope some of you talented Tattoo Artists take a chance and try to get on this show. It would be amazing to see someone from Detroit on Ink Master and it would be even better to see them win $100,000. We would try out for it ourselves, but we're not Tattoo Artists. So if you are, this is your chance!!!

The Westin Book Cadillac is located at 1114 Washington Blvd. in Detroit. For further details on the casting call and Ink Master click here.


Thursday, July 25, 2013

Old Gods - Stylized Violence Release Show wsg Wilson!

When I read that Old Gods was releasing their new album called Stylized Violence I was excited . When I realized that Wilson, Wildcatting, and Reverend were playing with them and the show was at The Loving Touch, I was shocked. To see a line up of this caliber at The Loving Touch is going to be amazing! I can't even begin to imagine how crowded the place is going to be. It might be smart to double fist beers all night, that bar is going to be crowded!

Old Gods is going to bring some heavy music and Wilson is going to bring some heavy partying, a perfect combo in any music lovers eyes. I guarantee it's the last time you'll ever see these two bands play a venue as small as The Loving Touch again. In fact I could see both of these bands taking off very soon and playing Detroit less and less. So any chance you have to see them should not be missed. Old gods received a great review in AP magazine and Wilson made it up to number 10 on the charts when they released their first full length record a few weeks ago. I'm proud to see local music putting Detroit back on the national map.

The show starts at 8 p.m. on July 27th and $10 gets you in the door with a copy of the new Old Gods record in your hand. The Loving Touch is located at 22634 Woodward in Ferndale. Let the fuckery commence!


Check Out Some Crazy Creations this Weekend at Maker Faire!

This Saturday and Sunday there is a festival featuring anything and everything you can think, invent, and create. Maker Faire is an event that brings together over 400 makers and their projects, whether they are robots or musical fountains. Now in it's fourth year, this fun festival is appropriately presented by and held at The Henry Ford in Dearborn.

Maker Faire reaches out to inventors of all different varieties to submit their creations from a number of different categories, from robotics to puppets and pretty much everything in between. Some of the exhibits that are old favorites include a life size mousetrap and a fire breathing dragon art-car (which is making it's last appearance at the festival this year). There are over 100 new makers that are involved in this year's festival, so we're sure there will be plenty of new awww inspiring displays. Amongst these new creations attendees will also get to see some items from The Henry Ford collection such as a kitchen sink engine and the Quadricycle, as part of Henry Ford’s 150th birthday celebration.

On top of all of the inventions and oddities there is also food and entertainment, including performances by The Weird Sisters Circus. Plus many of the displays are interactive, so that's entertaining all on its own.

Maker Faire runs this Saturday and Sunday from 9:30 a.m. until 6 p.m. Tickets are $28 for adults, $26 for seniors, $19 for kids 5-12 years old, and the little ones that are 4 and under are free. If you have a membership to The Henry Ford you get half off those prices. So head out to The Henry Ford and geek out this weekend. We're sure you'll see some things that will blow your mind and maybe even some that will inspire you to create something crazy yourself!


Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Win Tickets to see Break Anchor, Golden Torso, Knife and More!

Here at Hip In Detroit we've pretty much become the go to place for ticket giveaways. I know that we love whenever we have the chance to get into a show for free, especially since we are pretty broke more often than not. So hopefully you appreciate free tickets as much as we do!

Mike over at Small's has always been way too good to us and this week he is spreading his generosity towards us on to our readers. Saturday night there is an amazing show lined up for Small's and it's also Mike's Birthday Celebration as well as his friends Dan Kelly and Chuck Burns. The bands on the bill include Break Anchor, Golden Torso, Knife and Blue Snaggletooth. As you probably know by now, we love Break Anchor and Golden Torso. We have heard nothing but good things about Blue Snaggletooth and Knife too, so we are looking forward to the chance to check both out this weekend. 

Well, thanks to Mike & Small's, we are giving one lucky fan the chance to get them and a friend in to this show for free. All you have to do is email us at with "Saturday at Small's" in the subject line. Normally we would have you put a band name there, but we can't just pick one this time around and all 4 is a lot to type. Make sure you also include your first and last name in the body of the email so we know who you are! If you want to double or even triple your luck, tweet at us (@hipindetroit) about the show or tell us on Facebook that you want to go! 

We're sure this is going to be one hell of a party that you aren't going to want to miss! We'd like to wish Mike a very Happy Birthday! If you see him on Saturday, make sure you wish him one too! Doors for this show open at 8 p.m. and it's only $6 to get in. For the rest of the details, head on over to the Facebook event here.


Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Something A Bit Different For Us - Beyonce @ The Palace

This past weekend Sadie and I had the pleasure to go see Beyonce in concert. It's not something that we would normally go to or cover, but we just couldn't pass up on it! It is Queen B after all. Plus this tour has been getting such good press it made us really eager to see what kind of show she puts on.

We got there right when she was starting and there was a pretty cool video with her in it playing on stage. Then she came out with a bang of course and started the show off right. The Palace was packed. It's been a very long time since I have been to a show this size, if ever, so it was pretty crazy for me. Everyone there went nuts when Beyonce finally came out. The girls next to me lost it every time she looked somewhat in our direction.

Photo Credit My Daily News 

Beyonce is a great performer and she can definitely sing. The best part was probably when she flew over the crowd to the center stage that no one really noticed was there before. I do have to say that for us, the videos in between each song were a little boring and got to be a little much. Some of them were more interesting than others, but to me they just seemed to be unnecessary. There were ballerinas a couple times which was pretty cool and even twin dancers that were really good, which was one of the highlights for me.

Overall it was a lot of fun and we'd like to thank Pepsi for the opportunity to cover this show! Remember you can still enter to win a prize pack from Pepsi as part of their Iconic Summer Moments. All you have to do is go to this site and submit a picture of your summer activity. Good luck!


Courtney Love - Still the Queen of Rock and Roll

This past Friday the queen of rock 'n roll came to Detroit and played the Motor City Casino. There were no openers, just Courtney Love and five guys you've never seen before playing songs from everything including Live Through This, Celebrity Skin, Pretty on the Inside, and the solo album. Having seen Hole in the past I was not sure what to expect of this solo tour, I figured whether it was a train wreck or a triumph I was in for a treat. The fact that I got to shoot photos only sweetened the experience and fulfilled a childhood dream.

She opened the set with "Miss World", a song I heard for the first time in 6th grade. Her loud wailing scream was just as solid as it was 20 years ago, maybe even stronger. She looked like Courtney Love- older, a little rougher around the edges but just as blonde and red lipped as she ever was. She even changed into a baby doll slip dress for the encore at the end of the night. There is something about her that is frozen in time in the best way. She talked to the crowd a lot and even commented that this was an older group then she is used to performing for. She invited a lot of her fans to sit on stage with her and threw roses out at others. She even smoked cigarettes on stage, which infuriated the security team at the casino. She brought the perfect amount of lady-like charm and punk rock rebellion to the stage and reminded me what so many of the shows I have seen lately are missing- rock stars.
Rock stars get on stage and take over a room. They engage their fans and give them a show. They don't need dancers, to spend thousands of dollars on props, or even fancy clothes when they preform. Rock stars get on stage and entertain you with their words, movements and their songs. Courtney Love doesn't need Hole and she doesn't need you. Courtney Love can entertain with very little effort because Courtney Love is a rock star, today, tomorrow and forever. I am very much looking forward to the new single and what the future holds for her.


Monday, July 22, 2013

Win Tickets to See The Draft

When Chuck Ragan decided to leave Hot Water Music in the early 2000's, the rest of the band decided that they weren't willing to call it quits. The remaining members continued to play together under the name The Draft. In 2006 they released In A Million Pieces and in 2007 they released a self titled album. Since then they have released two songs on a 7 inch and decided to do a US tour.
They are coming to the Magic Stick in Detroit this Friday with special guests Tim Barry from Avail, Cory Branan, Luther, Des Ark, and Cheap Girls. Tickets for this show are $15 and doors are at 6:30. The Magic Stick is located at 46100 Woodward Avenue, Detroit. Since this is a Black Iris Booking show we were able to get a set of tickets to give away. The winner will have their name on the guest list, plus one. To enter, email us at Please include your full name and use the subject line 'The Draft'. We will announce the winner early Friday morning.


Win Tickets To The Melvins 30th Anniversary Tour

This Friday, July 26, the legends in The Melvins are coming to Small's Bar in Hamtramck. When this show was announced I was shocked not only because the Melvins were going on tour, but because this is going to be an amazing experience for any Melvins fan. Small's is known for having a great sound system, but I believe they can only pack 400 or 500 hundred people in the venue tops. I have no doubt that this show is going to sellout and to have the honor of seeing such a huge band in such an intimate setting will be legendary.
The Melvins formed in the year I was born, 1983. They influenced most of the music that I listened to throughout my teenage years and are even credited with introducing Dave Grohl to Kurt Cobain and Chris Novoselic. This is the summer of anniversary tours and because the owners of Small's are so cool, they are going to let us give away one set of tickets for this show. Like I said, it's going to sell out so get your entries in now and hope that you're the lucky winner. To enter, please email Use the subject line 'The Melvins' and include your full name. We'll announce one lucky winner this Friday and their name will be on the guest list plus one.

Tickets are $17 in advance and can be purchased here. This show will be $20 at the door the day off and is open to all ages. Doors for the show are at 8 p.m. and all tickets purchased in advance will be will call only. For further information, go to


Friday, July 19, 2013

Happy Anniversary Found Sound!

This must be the time of year for great minds to give birth to great ideas. We mentioned the other day that Toepfer House is turning 2 on Friday. Well, this Saturday everyone's favorite Ferndale record store is turning 1 year old! Found Sound will be celebrating 1 year of existence with one of their ever so popular free shows as well as some deals for their loyal shoppers.

First off, the shop is opening at 11 a.m. and will be giving out free cookies to the first 100 people through the door. We're not sure exactly what kind of cookies their giving away, but it's a cookie and it's free... just take it. All day long they are offering 10% off all new merchandise and 25% off the used stuff (and they have a pretty large collection of good used stuff if you've never been there). Once 8 p.m. rolls around, the shop will hold host to a show featuring the legendary Andre Williams, Oscillating Fan Club, Sheefy McFly, J. Walker & The Crossguards and Caveman Woodman. This sounds like the perfect show for before, after, or when you need a break from Pig & Whiskey.

Even if you can't make it to the show, head over during the day and buy yourself some records. You've worked hard all week! You deserve it! And while you're there make sure you wish the shop and the guys that work there a Happy 1st Anniversary. We hope they have many more to come!


Thursday, July 18, 2013

Everything You Need to Know about S'Mittenfest and 826michigan!

This Saturday Ypsi's popular Mittenfest is taking over the Magic Stick for their summer edition,  S'Mittenfest! The event will feature over 20 bands for the low price of $10. The bill includes Young Punk, The Campanellis, The Hand in the Ocean, Red Pill, Jah Connery, Truman, Twine Time, Revoir, Timothy Monger State Park, The Anonymous, Pewter Cub, Santa Monica Swim and Dive Club, James Linck, Caveman Woodman, Silent Lions, In Fact, Drunken Barn Dance, Deadbeat Beat, Clear Soul Forces, The Kickstand Band and Breeze One.

But, there is so much more to S'Mittenfest than just the music. This event is actually a fundraiser benefiting 826michigan, a non-profit that offers free literacy and literary arts programs for students from 6-18 years old. The group recently expanded their service area from Ypsilanti and now offers their programs in Detroit as well. To find out more about 826michigan and S'Mittenfest, we caught up with the Executive Director of 826michigan, Amand Uhle.

Hip In Detroit- Tell us about 826michigan. What is your goal? What services do you offer?
Amanda- "We offer a huge range of services for school-aged students: creative writing workshops, afterschool tutoring, in-classroom help for teachers and publishing opportunities. Every thing we do for our 2,500+ students is totally free and is based on the ideas that writing skills are the key to future success and that even a little one-on-one attention can make a profound difference for a young person."

Hip In Detroit- You recently branched out from Ypsilanti and are now working in Detroit too! How did this come about?
Amanda- "In 2011, our board developed a strategic plan centered on expanding our work to the city of Detroit. In 2012, we were delighted when DTE Energy Foundation gave us a major grant that allowed us to launch our programs here. In February we started sending tutors to three schools in Detroit to help teachers and to provide extra one-on-one attention for students who need it most. And this summer, we're at the Franklin-Wright Settlements, Clark Park and the Campbell branch of the Detroit Public Library offering creative writing workshops to students. We're on track to be in even more schools in the fall, as long as we continue recruiting new volunteers and raising funds."

Hip In Detroit- What is Liberty Street Robot Supply & Repair? Is it really just what it sounds like?
Amanda- "It's just exactly that: a robot store. We sell everything from robot lunch boxes to rain boots and a little bit of many other toys and novelties that fit the robot theme."
(***Note, proceeds from this great store go toward 826michigan.***)

Hip In Detroit- What if someone wants to get involved with 826michigan? Do you have volunteer positions and if so, what type of people are you looking for?
Amanda- "We are in great need of Detroit-based volunteers. High school graduates who are at least 18 years old and can commit to at least 2 months are the best candidates for us. Orientation is short and sweet, and we make volunteering really flexible and accessible and do our best to match volunteers' own skills and goals to our students' needs. It often winds up that the volunteer benefits as much from this fulfilling kind of experience as the student does."

Hip In Detroit- We've all heard of Mittenfest for a while now, but I'm not sure many people realized what the cause was. How did this festival come about?
Amanda- "One of our volunteers, Brandon Zwagerman, left Ann Arbor for New York several years ago. He was planning a holiday trip home and wanted to get some old friends together and put together a show. His trip home coincided with some others' and pretty soon a legitimate homecoming of Michigan musicians was underway. Brandon is generous and thought of us, "Why not make the show a benefit for 826michigan?" That first show raised about $1,000, which started the momentum for many years of shows in Ypsilanti and Ann Arbor and many thousands of dollars raised to support our work."

Hip In Detroit- Tell us about S'Mittenfest! What can people coming to the show expect? How is it similar to and different from Mittenfest?
Amanda- "Mittenfest and S'Mittenfest are both heartfelt expressions of love for Michigan music and musicians, for Michigan culture and for our community. Even after 7 years of Mittenfests, I'm still astounded that so very many artists and volunteers contribute their time and talent to make these events happen. The events feel a little like our student-centered programs: generous and creative adults pitch in--a little or a lot--to make something outstanding and important happen. And even though there's some tremendous hard work involved, in the end, it just feels like good fun."

So this Saturday come out to the Stick for a great show that will help out a great organization. Doors open at 2 p.m. with the first band going on at 3 p.m. and the last band set to hit the stage at 1 a.m. For more info on S'Mittenfest visit the Facebook event page here. For all of the details on 826michigan, how you can help out, how you can use their services, and how you can visit them for all of your robot needs, visit


Pepsi Celebrates the Red, White & Blue Season w/ Beyonce @ The Palace This Saturday

So...this is a little out of the ordinary for us but we are super excited about it, and hopefully you are too! This summer, Pepsi has given everyone a chance to enter a contest to win some pretty cool things.
To enter, basically you just have to submit a picture to the Pepsi Iconic Summer Moments site showing your summer awesomeness and you will be entered to win some great iconic summer prizes, like chances to see different big artists (like Beyonce) on tour. To enter, just submit your summer photo to this site and follow the prompts. And make sure to Tweet, Facebook, etc. about the contest. For every photo submitted, Pepsi is pledging to donate to a group of charities that support the military and families in need. So everything you do for this is going to a great cause, which is even more reason to do it! Everyone has their summer activities that they like to do and since it's 2013, I know you're all chronicling them on your phones and posting them to every social media outlet you can so there is really no excuse.

This weekend, you'll have a perfect opportunity to take pictures to submit to Pepsi. Beyonce is making a stop on her tour here in the Detroit area at The Palace on Saturday, July 20. If you're at the show, they are encouraging you to take pictures and Tweet, Facebook, Instagram them with the hashtags- #behive and #iconicsummer to help support the charities. We are super excited to go to the show. It's Beyonce so we only expect fabulous-ness and we will be live Tweeting the whole thing.

Thanks to Pepsi, we have the opportunity to offer one of our readers a special prize pack! This is a pretty awesome opportunity so if you would like to win this special item from the pop brand, all you have to do is email us with your full name and address- it will have to be mailed to you after all! Send your email to with the subject line 'Iconic Summer'. Good luck, happy summer and hope to see you dancing to "Single Ladies" with us on Saturday!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Backyard BBQ @ Small's Saturday!

If you're like me, you've been thinking to yourself lately, "I haven't been to enough BBQ's yet this summer." Eating pretty much any kind of BBQ while outside, drinking a cold beer and listening to good music is pretty much the ultimate summer activity once you become a 'grown-up'. Running around in the heat just isn't as fun as it used to be! So if you have been thinking that, then you're in luck this weekend. Saturday night (July 20), Small's is hosting a Backyard BBQ with Koffin Kats, The Goddamn Gallows and The Matadors!

In case you've been living under a rock for the last few years, the Koffin Kats are a punk rock/ rockabilly group from Detroit that just got back from their European Tour. They are currently recording their 10th anniversary album and are planning a fall tour. So make sure to catch them before these busy guys head out again.

We've talked about The Goddamn Gallows a few times now, and hopefully that has encouraged you to go out and see them because you need to. I even had the chance to do an interview with them earlier this year that you can read here. Basically, if you like bands that are crazy fun, use different instruments from the norm (washboard, accordion, banjo, etc.) and most importantly, have a fire breather, then you need to check them out. They have been all over the place lately and will be on their way again after this show, so don't miss this chance!

The Matadors are a self-labeled 'horrorbilly' band from Canada. They have been around since the mid 90's with five albums and one on the way. They may not have all of the original members still, but they seem to be just as crazy and fun.

The menu for the night will include pulled pork, burgers, hot dogs, veggie burgers, spicy coleslaw and chips all for $3-4 each. The show is at 7 p.m., but get there early to get your food. Tickets are $12 in advance or $15 at the door. You can purchase them ahead of time at the bar or online here. But before you do that, we're giving you an opportunity to win a pair of tickets, courtesy of Mike from Small's! If you'd like a chance to win tickets and save yourself some money for more BBQ, then email us at with your full name and the subject line 'Backyard BBQ!' We'll draw the winner Saturday morning so make sure to check your email!


Happy Birthday Toepfer House!

Toepfer House in Warren is one of my favorite venues in the area. Granted, it is literally a house that a few punk rock kids live in and have shows at, but it is also one of the most fun places to catch a live show. At Toepfer House you don't need to worry about paying for parking, $9 beers, mean or pushy security guards, or any of the other issues that can come along with going to bigger shows at corporate venues.

Believe it or not this venue is celebrating its two year anniversary this Friday. They are doing it up right and having an anniversary show to celebrate. The lineup will feature Live it Out, Break Anchor, Cheapshow, Fires in Japan and Due North. The best part is that this show is free and all ages are welcome. They will have a keg for people of drinking age, a cup to drink can be purchased for a few dollars at the show. Vince, a Toepfer House resident, will also be cutting mohawks for $2 a pop and they have a gift basket to raffle off that includes prizes from Hip in Detroit, Vile Co. and Division Tattoos. They are taking donations and offering this gift basket as a way to raise money to buy a PA system for the house. Doors are at 8 p.m. and Toepfer House is located at 8741 Toepfer in Warren. We wish Toepfer House a happy birthday and hope they continue to be a venue for years to come!


Win Tickets to See The Ultimate Johnny Cash Tribute w/ The Sound Logic

A couple months ago we were introduced to a band called The Sound Logic. I listened to them and decided that I definitely liked them and was looking forward to hearing more of them and hopefully seeing them soon. And they have been playing a lot of shows lately getting their sound out there for everyone to hear. However, they have an especially exciting show coming up!
On July 26 The Sound Logic will be playing with a different kind of 'act' than you're probably used to seeing. They will be playing with Terry Lee Goffee - 'The Ultimate Johnny Cash Tribute'. I'm not always a big fan of impersonators, but sometimes they just seem too good to miss. Terry Lee Goffee has been performing as Johnny Cash for long time and has even traveled all over the U.S., Canada, Ireland and U.K. performing his tribute show. He was even selected to provide the moves for Johnny Cash in Guitar Hero 5! With that on your resume along with 'ultimate' in your name, it must be a good performance!

The show will be on July 26 at Saint Andrew's. Doors are at 8 p.m. and tickets cost $15 and can be purchased here. However, we are giving a bunch of people a chance to win tickets to get in to the show for free! We have 10 sets of tickets for this one and we'll make it nice and easy for you to enter. Just email us at with your full name and address. We'll be mailing these tickets out to you, so you have until Monday, July 22 to enter. You have some time, but don't forget to do it! You know you want to hear "A Boy Named Sue" sung by someone who looks like Johnny in the flesh! In addition to the tickets, five of the lucky winners will also be getting prize packs from The Sound Logic that will include a CD and stickers and buttons. Sounds like a pretty good deal to me! Good luck!


Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Pig & Whiskey 2013 is Here!

One of the best things about summer has to be all of the awesome, outdoor festivals that happen around here. Now that it's July we will soon be overwhelmed with outdoor events every weekend. This weekend is no exception. The annual Pig & Whiskey festival will be going on all weekend for its third year.
Pig & Whiskey is a festival that is definitely meant for the true pig lover. The festival features more than 10 BBQ options from around the metro Detroit area like Slows, Detroit BBQ Co. and Union Woodshop. If that isn't enough to satisfy your hunger, Treat Dreams will also be on hand serving up special flavors of their ice cream.

After you finish stuffing your face with all the BBQ you can handle, you'll need something to wash it down with. Which is why you'll need to head over to the whiskey tent! You can sample whiskeys ranging from local Valentine Distilling Co. to Jack Daniels. There is also a whiskey cocktail tent and a large beer tent with local craft beers in case you can't handle all the whiskey.

Not only will there be tons of delicious food and beverages, there will be lots of fantastic music. Some of our favorite local acts like The HandGrenades, The Muggs, The Hounds Below, Alexis and Passalacqua will be performing throughout the weekend. Friday looks like it might be one of the better lineups, but there are definitely bands to catch the whole weekend. For the full lineups for Friday, Saturday and Sunday, click here.

The festival starts Friday, July 19 at 6 p.m. and goes until midnight; Saturday 11 a.m.- midnight; and Sunday 11 a.m.- 11 p.m. Metro Times is partnering with the WAB to bring us this fun summer event and it will take place behind the WAB again this year. For more information, visit the Facebook page here.


Win Tickets to The Big Night Out Tour

Whoever is managing Kaleido is doing a great job. Granted they're a great band with a good looking front lady, but this summer alone they are playing Oakaloosa Music Festival, Warped Tour, and the Detroit date of The Big Night Out Tour which features Fuel, Hoobastank, Alien Ant Farm and Lit. All of these are pretty solid bookings for any band, local or otherwise.
Yesterday we announced we are giving away tickets to Oakaloosa, but we also wanted to give you a chance to catch Kaleido on the Big Night Out Tour. We will be giving away two sets of tickets to two lucky fans. This show will take place on July 25 at the Macomb Music Theatre in Mt. Clemens MI. Doors are at 5:30 p.m. and the music starts promptly at 6:30 p.m. Main floor for this show is $37 and balcony with reserved seating is $32.  Tickets are available at here and 18 plus are welcome. This is your chance to see some heavy hitters alongside an up-and-coming Detroit act. To enter, please email your full name and address to The winners will be drawn at the end of the week and will receive two tickets in the mail before the show. Good luck!


Monday, July 15, 2013

Win Tickets to Oakaloosa!

Festivals have officially taken over the summer. It seems like every month another one is popping up. Some have been epic failures and some have been successful, but so far all of them have been interesting. Festivals seem to be the wave of the future, some are only one day and some last up to a week. Last month Orion Music & More in Detroit featured both rock, metal and EDM music and brought in a variety of people. I think this model is the way to go to make sure that you pack the place and reach a broader audience. Oakaloosa is taking this idea to a whole new level. They have the most eclectic group of artists performing that I have ever seen. Some of the names that interested me include Girl Talk, Bone Thugs-n-Harmony, Jessica Hernandez & the Deltas, Royce Da 5' 9", Kaleido, Mike Leslie Band, Of Mice and Musicians, The Infatuations, Bizzare, and Doss the Artist. That's right kids this Saturday, July 27, you can see Bone Thugs-n-Harmony at the same festival with Jessica Hernandez, I think that's pretty cool. For a full list of the lineup click here.
This festival will also be held at a very interesting location. They are re-opening an 1840 era army base called Fort Wayne for the event. The fest is even named after a soldier who served at the base. The purpose or theme of this event is rediscovering whats old and forgotten and transforming it into something entirely new. In fact, a percentage of every dollar earned will go toward the restoration of Fort Wayne. They want to return it to its former glory and will do so with your help and support.

Tickets for this event are $45 in advance, $55 at the door and $65 for VIP access. Considering there will be over 12 hours of music this is one of the lowest priced festivals that I have ever seen. But you know we're going to do better than that. We're going to give you a chance to win two tickets to the festival. We have quite a few pairs to give away and we will be mailing them to the winners before the show. To enter, simply email us at with the subject line 'Oakaloosa'. Please include your full name and address so that we can send you the tickets if you are one of our lucky winners. If you really want to make sure that you're a winner, you can also tweet, Instagram or Facebook us your entry with the hash tag #Oakaloosa. If you help us get the word out about the festival we will enter your name into the drawing twice, giving you doubling your chance of being one of our lucky winners.

For more information about this festival or to purchase tickets in advance, please visit

Outdoor Movies - The Perfect Summer Night Activity

I love movies. Pretty much every kind of movie. I'll give almost any movie a chance, with the exception of some Schwarzenegger-type movies and a lot of really sappy ones- even though I love Ryan Gosling, I have no desire to watch "The Notebook". I also love different ways of watching movies, besides just sitting on my couch or at the local theatre spending $15. This is why I absolutely love the Redford Theatre, where they show classics in the beautiful restored setting of the old theatre giving you a chance to watch movies on the big screen that you otherwise wouldn't have had the chance to see. Another great way to watch a movie is outside. Drive-ins are so much fun and fiscally smart! Two for the price of one and you can bring your own snacks! That being said, you can see why I'm excited about a few metro Detroit cities that play movies outside for their residents. Clawson, Warren and Ferndale are just three that I know of. 

Starting this Thursday, the Ferndale DDA is bringing back their Get Reel Outdoor Movies program for its second season. They are kicking it off with "Mamma Mia!" As annoying as Abba can get, you kind of can't help but like some of their songs and Meryl Streep is pretty entertaining in this goofy role. Yes, the movie is a bit cheesy, but it should be a fun one to watch outside with a group of other people enjoying it. This movie is going to be special because the Detroit Actors Theatre Company will be joining for a sing-along. I don't care who you are, if you know "Dancing Queen", you know you're going to start singing it when you hear it. Or it will at least be stuck in your head for a week.

The outdoor movies are held on Vester Street, near Valentine Distilling, and start at dusk. They are always free and you can bring lawn chairs and food, but there is no alcohol or glass allowed. The movies will be held every third Thursday through September. The next one will be August 17 and they will be playing "Grease". The last movie has yet to be determined and they are looking for input from the people who come to watch. So if you have an idea, let them know! Happy outdoor movie watching!


Friday, July 12, 2013

Red Scare Across America in Detroit

This Sunday, Red Scare Industries is bringing an awesome show to town. Red Scare Industries is a Chicago based record label that is home to many awesome bands like The Menzingers, Teenage Bottlerocket, Cobra Skulls and much more.
The show this weekend is featuring three of the label's bands, Elway, Masked Intruder and Sam Russo. Elway is an indie-punk band from Colorado. The four piece pop-punk group just released their new album, Leavetaking, at the end of June. The whole album is just good, pop-punk music that is perfect for summer listening.

Masked Intruder is another pop-punk four piece band, but they are from Wisconsin. One other difference that you may or may not have figured out based on their name, is that they wear masks when playing. We here in Detroit may be a bit familiar with bands playing in costumes and we know as well as anyone that it always makes for an even more interesting show.

Elway, Masked Intruder and Sam Russo will be making the Detroit stop of their tour on Sunday, July 14 at Small's in Hamtramck. Doors are at 8 p.m. and it is an all ages show. You really can't beat a punk show at Small's and what else do you have to do on a Sunday anyway? It's just one more excuse to party!


So Much Sandwich for So Little Money - $5 Crunch

Recently Becca and I visited the always raved about Zingerman's in Ann Arbor. The place is popular for their huge sandwiches and fresh deli meat, which was all there, but the price for what we got wasn't exactly awesome and the sandwiches weren't quite as big as we expected. What can I say?!? We like a lot of food and we love sammiches, but we're also kind of cheap! So after spending about $15+ each, we started comparing this sandwich with other places, which led the conversation to a lunch spot that we frequent and decided to share with you.

$5 Crunch is basically a sandwich shop, which is about the only thing it has in common with Zingerman's. Regardless, they have huge sandwiches, along with a menu full of other delicious food like pittas (pizza made on pita bread), soup, salad bar and shaker fries. The name $5 Crunch eludes to one of the best things about the menu; everything is $5 or less. Keep in mind, everything is a' la carte, but you get quite a bit of food and you don't have to dish out a lot of dough, which makes it a great place for lunch especially.

So, the majority of the menu is made up of sandwiches, with anything from a Philly to Turkey to a Veggie. However each of their sandwiches can be ordered in one of two different ways; either a footlong hoagie OR a "Crunchy Sandwich". What the heck is a "Crunchy Sandwich"? Oh, just a sandwich WITH FRIES ON THE SANDWICH!!! Which leads me to the second great thing on the menu... Shaker Fries. These skinny, fresh cut fries are awesome on their own, but you can also get them shaken up with pretty much any potato chip seasoning you could want. BBQ, Dill Pickle and Sour Cream & Onion are just a few of the choices with the latter being my favorite. Here's a couple of shots of our food from our last visit. Becca and I both opted for the hoagies that day, one was the Turkey, Bacon & Avacado and the other was the Veggie. We shared a small order of Sour Cream & Onion fries and there were plenty for both of us. 

On top of the great sandwiches and fries, there are some other interesting things on the menu. One thing that catches my eye every time, but I have yet to try are the Potachoes. Think nachos, but on homemade potato chips. I hear they're pretty amazing.
Another thing $5 Crunch has that I have yet to see elsewhere is a giant soft pretzel. It's pretty huge. Probably about 5 times the size of a normal one, maybe even 10. The restaurant claims that it is "Bigger than your head". I've seen some pretty big heads, but I don't think I've ever seen a pretzel this big. Other than the wacky food choices there is a salad bar that reminds me of the ones in NYC delis because you pick what you want and then pay by the weight of the salad. They also have homemade soups that you can get in a bread bowl, which you don't see all the time. There's also all sorts of fried appetizers and a bunch of other tasty stuff that you can check out on the full menu here.

So, if you are interested in giving $5 Crunch a try, there are two locations for you to choose from. One is in Madison Heights on the northwest corner of 12 Mile & Dequindre at 29151 Dequindre Road. The other is in Sterling Heights on Van Dyke & 15 Mile at 37012 Van Dyke. Definitely worth a try the next time you are in the area or can't decide what you want for lunch!


Thursday, July 11, 2013

A Whole 7 Inches, Split Between Big Mess and Copper Theives

Bellyache Records is a name we've been hearing a lot lately, mostly because it is associated with some of the more popular Detroit releases of 2013. Although the record company has been around since 2005, this year they have release some pretty amazing albums from bands like Destroy This Place, The Muggs and Hit Society. The list is quite lengthy and this weekend 2 more great Detroit bands will be putting out an album with Bellyache Records.

This Friday night Big Mess and Copper Thieves are releasing a Split 7" EP on Bellyache. The record includes 4 songs from the two bands and there are only 300 copies being made. To celebrate this fun release, they have invited their friends in Palaces to play a free show with them at The Loving Touch. Since the show is free, you have no excuse to not pick up this great album for only $6, which also includes a download code.

If you aren't familiar with Big Mess, we did an interview with the band back at the 2012 Blowout that you can check out here. Or you can head over to their bandcamp to check out their self-titled full length.

To check out Copper Thieves, head over to their website where they have 2 albums posted.

Neither of these bands play very often. So make sure to make a point to make it out to The Loving Touch this Friday. For the rest of the details on this show, click here.