Tuesday, March 31, 2015

It's Time to Check Out Iron Horse in Royal Oak

These days it seems like most restaurants in Metro Detroit open with a big flash.  They over advertise and get the word out before they have had any time to work out their kinks and perfect their menu. It's almost unheard of for a place to quietly open and start growing by word of mouth, but that is exactly what Royal Oak's newest restaurant Iron Horse has been doing.  The space opened last December but somehow I didn't hear about it until last week.  I'm glad someone finally turned me onto it because I had one of the best meals that I have had in a long time and I am already itching to go back for more.
Before I tell you about the menu, the space, and the drinks, I need to tell you about the esquites. Esquites is a traditional Mexican snack that features roasted corn. Iron Horse's version includes fresh roasted corn, avocado, jalapeno, mayo, cilantro, lime juice, chili powder, queso fresco, and flash fried corn strips with an optional meat of your choice.  I had the meatless version and loved every single bite of it. It was finely diced and tasted great as a dip on chips or as its own snack on a fork.  I have never had anything like this and cannot describe how refreshing the taste was. This is a must try when you visit the place.

Since I was getting a Mexican appetizer I choose to order tacos and nachos to share with my dining mates.  Iron Horse offers a variety of Mexican options but their menu also includes sandwiches, subs, burgers, pizza, and ribs. The most striking thing about their food was how fresh all of it tasted.
The nachos had tons of fresh cheese and veggies heaped onto them.  You have the option of adding meat to the nachos, but  I went for the meatless version. I am not a vegetarian, I just tend to eat that way.  Look at those huge slices of avocados in the picture, it was simply divine!  The nachos came with a variety of salsas including a super hot version called the ex-girlfriend. This sauce was given it's name because at first it tastes sweet, almost like ketchup, but it quickly becomes fiery hot, much like an ex-girlfriend!
I also ordered the mahi-mahi taco.  The taco was going to be the true test of the restaurant. I love a good fish taco but most places do not do this well.  Fortunately for me, Iron Horse killed it. The shell was crunchy but not too hard and the mahi-mahi was grilled and seasoned to perfection!

I also ordered one of Iron Horses's featured drinks called The Angry Ginger.  This drink combines Serrano-infused tequila, muddled strawberries, Cointeau, simple syrup, and fresh lime juice.  It was the perfect mix of sweet and spicy.  The restaurant has a lot of unique drink choices, but this one was so good that I stuck with it when I was ordering my second round. I should warn you that you should not eat the whole Serrano pepper in one bite, it has a huge kick, I learned the hard way!

Iron Horse is located at 316 W 4th St. Royal Oak, Michigan. You can check out a full version of Iron Horse's menu here.  I suggest that you get in there and give Iron Horse a try before everyone figures out how great the place is!


It's Time for The International Pop Overthrow Detroit

In its eight year, the International Pop Overthrow will be taking over PJ's Lager House in Detroit this weekend. The festival originally got its start in LA almost twenty years ago. Over the years it has expanded to major cities across the US and throughout the world. The goal is to bring attention to pop music while being an outlet for bands to play in a festival setting.

The Detroit IPOP will happen this Thursday thru Saturday, April 2nd, 3rd and 4th. Check out the lineup for each day below:

Thursday, April 2
8:15 Chris Degnore
9:00 The Dives
9:45 Nick Piunti
10:30 The Pounders
11:15 The Rose Cult

Friday, April 3
8:15 Matt Fig
9:00 Ryan Allen and His Extra Arms
9:45 John Holk & The Sequins
10:30 The Tearaways
11:15 Le Voyage
12:00 Dave Rave

Saturday afternoon, April 4 (Starts at 2 p.m)
2:00 Dave Caruso
2:45 DL Rossi
3:30 The Jeremy Band
4:15 The Starfire Band
5:00 The Bruised Reed

Saturday evening, April 4 (Starts around 8 p.m.)
8:15 The Hangabouts
9:00 The Romeo Flynns
9:45 Chris Richards & The Subtractions
10:30 Fireking
11:15 The Sugar Clouds
12:00 The Static Dial

Admission to each show is $10, except the afternoon show which is $8. 21+ are welcome at night and 18+ are welcome during the day. PJ's Lager House is located at 1254 Michigan Avenue in Corktown in Detroit. 


Monday, March 30, 2015

Win Tickets to Watch Extreme Midget Wrestling Ringside

Hipindetroit.com has given away a lot of tickets throughout the years, but today's giveaway is by far the most interesting one to date.  Today, we have a few sets of tickets to giveaway to tomorrow night's Extreme Midget Wrestling at St. Andrew's Hall in Detroit.

Extreme Midget Wrestling is a touring wrestling federation that features fighters that and under 4 feet tall. These fighters showcase their skills and prove that when it comes to wrestling, height does not matter. Tickets for the event are only $12 dollars in advanced, they can be purchased here. If you would like to enter to win a set please email your full name to hipindetroit@gmail.com.  We will draw a few winners in the morning and see you ringside tomorrow night!


Win Tickets to see The Suicide Machines + More!

It's hard for me to describe what a Suicide Machines' show means to me. Detroit has changed over the last twenty years. I have changed over the last 20 years, but somehow The Suicide Machines have managed to stay relevant, fun, and entertaining throughout the last 20 years without changing the essence of who they are and what they do. Sure, the lineup has changed, their music has changed, but the experience of going to a Machines' show has remained authentic.

The Suicide Machines were the first band that I crowd surfed to, the first band that let me hang out back stage, and the first band that let me drink on the side of their stage. Their shows were always packed with young punk kids looking to have fun, dance, and let loose. When I think of a SM show, I think of sweat, screaming, unity, and fun. So much fucking fun. I think of letting loose and singing at the top of my lungs in a crowded room with tons of like minded people. The funny thing is, I'm not talking about 20 years ago, I'm talking a few months ago at Black Christmas.

Somehow, the band still gets on stage and kills it and the crowd still gets sweaty as fuck while the scream, dance, and sing along. There are always tons of younger fans at their shows, which makes me wonder to myself how the hell did you find this band while simultaneously thinking I'm so happy you found this band and get to experience this show. Lately, when Ive seen bands from my past I have felt really old, but somehow, the Machines make me feel really young again. I so am excited to see the guys back at St. Andrew's and I'm looking forward to following them as they embark on their first national tour since who knows when. I couldn't help but smile when I saw that some out of state shows like Boston were already sold out. It is nice to know that there are like minded people in other states who know that they're in for a good time. I also need to mention that every band opening the show and going out on tour with the band is amazing. This includes on of Jay's side projects Break Anchor, Rich's side project Bastardous, and Derek Grant's solo music.  It's also going to be interesting to see Derek Grant take the stage in place of Ryan V.

The Machines will kick off their tour on April 3rd in Indiana and will play their second date of fourteen shows here in Detroit. They will be playing St. Andrew's Hall on Saturday, April 4thTickets for the show are $18 in advance and doors for the show are at 6:30 p.m. You do not want to miss any of the opening acts. You also don't want to miss my up close and personal interview with Rich from The Suicide Machines. I had the rare and weird opportunity of asking a friend all those dorky band questions you can never ask in public without looking crazy. But, before you read ahead  to a learn a lot more about Rich, the Machines, and the legend that has become Black Christmas, we have a little surprise for you. We have a special prize pack to give away courtesy of Black Iris Booking and all of the bands on the lineup. We have one pair of tickets to see the show and a t-shirt from every band playing the show. You will walk away with a t-shirt of your choice from each band on the lineup! That's four shirts and entry for two into this event! If you would like to enter to win, please email your full name to hipindetroit@gmail.com. We will email the winner the day before the show and give them details on how to claim their prize.

HID- When did you join the SM and what albums did you record with them?
Rich- "I joined in 2002. I recorded A Match & Some Gasoline, and War Profiteering Is Killing Us All."

HID- What is your favorite Suicide Machines song to play and why?
Rich- "Hmm… I love playing 'Your Silence', 'Capsule', 'Keep It A Crime', pretty much the later, heavier material. No dis to the ska, though! love playing all of that, too."

HID- Wikipedia says the The Suicide Machines Broke up from 2006-2009, would you say that is true?
Rich- "Yeah, I’d say that’s accurate. For one reason or another, everyone went their separate ways in 2006. We played a bachelorette party & couple of benefits in 2009 for shits and giggles. Word got out that we did those, and then we started getting a few show offers here and there. If something sounded fun, we did it. We weren’t setting out to become ‘active’ again. We’ve really only been averaging about 5 shows a year, so it’s still just a once-in-a-while kind of thing, the impending tour aside."

HID- What made you decide to go out on a big tour after taking so many years off of National and International touring?
Rich- "I mean, really, just fun. The one-offs and short runs we’ve been doing have only been cause for a bigger itch to scratch to hit the road. We’ve wanted to do a longer stretch of shows for a few years now, so it’s nice to be finally, albeit barely, pulling it off. I mean, Ryan couldn’t even break away to come out with us for these two weeks, so Derek Grant is making the trek with us. If Derek couldn’t have made it, we wouldn’t have done it. It’s tricky! (Cue RUN DMC.)"

HID- What city are you most looking forward to playing in?
Rich- "To be honest, I’m really excited we’re doing another show at St. Andrews Hall. We haven’t played there in ages. It has always been a special place to play for me. I’ve seen so many incredible shows there over the years, I always feel honored to grace that stage.

Aside from that, I cannot begin to tell you how excited I am to play Boston. We haven’t played there in something like 8 or 9 years. We have a lot of friends there I can’t wait to catch up with. I’ve always felt an affinity between Boston and Detroit – everyone I’ve ever met from there are honest, tough, good-hearted people. Everyone feels like family. It’s a home away from home."

HID- What kinda song lineup can we expect on this tour? Old Stuff, new stuff?
Rich- "Haha, old! We’re playing Destruction By Definition from start to finish. People have been asking for years, so their wishes have been granted."

HID- Tell us a little about the bands that are opening for you on tour.
Rich- "Well, funny thing about the tour is – Almost everyone in The Suicide Machines is their own opening act! Break Anchor (Jay Navarro), Bastardous (me), and Derek Grant (Um, well, Derek Grant, duh) solo will be opening. We all have new records out or in the works, so it’s one big Michigan punk-ska-rock dance party. Derek’s solo record Breakdown came out on Red Scare in January, Break Anchor’s new record In A Van Down By The River will be out April 7th on Paper + Plastick, and my newest endeavor, BASTARDOUS, will be releasing our self-titled debut on Bellyache Records Friday, April 3rd. Three differently styled acts, but all from the same collective family. It’s going to be a great bill. I personally am excited to do two sets a night. It’ll feel great to play that much."

HID- Is it true that you are the man behind Black Christmas? If so whats the story behind that fest?
Rich- "Well, I think the quickest answer is that Black Christmas was born out of necessity for Ramona (Caldwell, Black Iris Booking) and The Suicide Machines to put together the best possible show the Friday after Christmas.
The long answer? Well…

A few years back, we (The Suicide Machines) started doing our Christmas shows again (we used to
do them way back in the day, too). We’d always book them with Ramona/Black Iris Booking. Ramona & I would be working on the Machines show lineup/details/etc., and she’d occasionally mention the challenge of juggling her other bands that were reuniting for their own Christmas shows. There was always a conflict of interest - one band hurting the other bands’ draws. I think it took a year or two for us to realize – “Hey! Why don’t we put ALL of the ‘ Christmas shows’ on ONE bill!?” When I say “All of the Christmas shows,” what I mean is, y’know, Mustard Plug always does a weekend of Christmas shows, and then there would always be a bunch of bands whose members lived out of state that wanted to do a quick reunion since everyone was back home to see Mom & Dad. “Oh shit! Everyone from the Parka Kings will be home, they should do a show!” type stuff. Last year it was Telegraph. Putting any of those four bands up against each other is foolish. Putting all four on one bill is epic! Ramona wanted a name for it, we brainstormed, and Jay came up with “Black Christmas.”

How it usually works is - Suicide Machines pick out some bands to invite, Ramona picks out some bands, we see who’s on board, and then Ramona, Sarah (Norton), and I work out the rest. Ramona & Sarah do the heavy logistical lifting (contacting, negotiating, coordinating). I do just a little bit of reaching out, and then the scheduling for the night. When picking bands, I feel like my role is to come at it from a fan’s perspective - I try to think about which bands would bring the “What the fuck!?” factor needed to get people to the show that might not make the trip. What’s going to get the regulars out? What’ll get the someone that goes to one show a year out? I want it to be this show! – Is it unexpected reunions, maybe someone from out of town that no one might expect, a combination of bands you wouldn’t see anywhere else, or a few surprises here and there? Lately, it’s been all of the above. It’s generally a huge pain in the ass, but once the day comes, it’s worth every bit of sweat and blood."

HID- Is there anything else that you would like our readers to know?
Rich- "Check out our new Facebook page, Twitter, and Instagram. We finally have that stuff after all of these years!"


Thursday, March 26, 2015

The Official Release Party for Zander The Great

If you happened to be at our 3rd Anniversary Bash last month, you were lucky enough to see the wonderful man that is Zander Michigan. His catchy, folky tunes caught our ear right away and we are absolutely hooked. In case you haven't noticed, we have been raving about him quite a bit, and we don't plan on stopping any time soon.
Zander Michigan recently released a new full length album entitled Zander The Great. You can take a listen to it here. Although the album has been out for a few weeks now, he is officially celebrating the release this weekend!

This Sunday, March 29th join Zander at Corktown Tavern along with Briar Rabbit. Any of you that have been hip to Zander Michigan for a while now know that his new album is a little different than his past releases, with many of the songs featuring a full band. Well, to go along with this new sound, Zander is playing two sets on Sunday, one acoustic (the way old fans are used to hearing him) and one with a full band. The band will feature Luke Bruski (drums), Quennton Thornbury (bass), and Mark Reitenga (lead guitar) and there will also be a special appearance by Courtney Hurley (for all of you that love "I Know How To Love You").

Admission to this great show is only $5. Doors are set to open at 6 p.m. with music starting at 7. Corktown Tavern is located at 1716 Michigan Avenue in Detroit. For more details on this show click here.

Congratulations on your new album, Zander! We wish you continued success and can't wait to be able to say we knew you way back when!


Win Tickets to See Joe Hertler & The Rainbow Seekers

Joe Hertler & The Rainbow Seekers have been hard at work touring and getting people across the country dancing to their tunes. This coming week they are heading back to Michigan and making a stop at The Loving Touch in Ferndale to party with all of you!

The group recently signed a deal with Mascot Records, a subsidiary of Universal Music Group to release their latest album, Terra Incognita. The album is available on vinyl, CD or as a digital download. Head over and check it out here.

The Joe Hertler & The Rainbow Seekers' show at The Loving Touch is happening on Friday, April 3rd. Joining them for the evening are Red Pill and Trey Simon.  18+ are welcome and doors are set to open at 8 p.m. Tickets are $10 in advance and can be purchased here, or you can pay $12 at the door the evening of the show.

Thanks to our friends at Fusion Shows, we are also getting one lucky person and a friend into this show for FREE! To enter to win these tickets, please email your full name to hipindetroit@gmail.com with Joe Hetler & The Rainbow Seekers in the subject line. We will draw a winner the day before the show and let them know how to claim their prize.


Win Tickets to a Special Evening with La Dispute

Friday, April 3rd La Dispute will be playing to a completely SOLD OUT crowd at The Crofoot Ballroom in Pontiac. The Michigan based band has been hard at work travelling the world since they released their latest album Rooms of the House. Before they head back over to Europe they are heading across the US for a couple of weeks, with the Pontiac date near the end of the tour, just before Chicago and their home base, Grand Rapids. 

Fusion Shows is bringing this great band to The Crofoot along with Title Fight and The Hotelier. However, in addition to the Friday night show, La Dispute will also be playing at Detroit's Masonic Temple in the Chapel for an "alternative seated performance", a special engagement that the band is doing at just a few stops on their tour. This show will take place the evening before, on Thursday, April 2nd, and will feature songs that have never been played live before, as well as readings of excerpts from the band's favorite books, stories, and poems, followed by a Q&A session. This sounds like an awesome opportunity that any La Dispute fan will not want to miss! Tickets for this special performance are $25 in advance and can be purchased here

Thanks to our friends at Fusion Shows, we are giving away a pair of tickets to this intimate Thursday night performance! If you would like to enter, email your full name to hipindetroit@gmail.com with La Dispute in the subject. We will draw our lucky winner a day or two before the show and let them know how to claim their prize. 

This is an amazing venue and sounds like it will be an amazing evening with La Dispute. Don't miss it!!!


Pop Up Giveaway: Win Tickets to See Benjamin Booker at The Magic Stick

Who saw Benjamin Booker open for Jack White last year during his two sold out shows at The Masonic Temple? If you saw him perform live you know that Benjamin puts on a solid show and plays his own flavor of rock tinged blues. If you missed it and want to see him perform live, we have a pair of  tickets to give away to his upcoming performance!

Benjamin will be playing at The Magic Stick this Monday, March 30th. Tickets for the show are only $15 in advance, you can purchase them here. Or, you can enter to win a pair of tickets by emailing your full name to hipindetroit@gmail.com with Benjamin Booker in the subject. We will draw a winner early on Monday and email them details on how to claim their prize. To learn more about Mr. Booker check out his latest feature with NPR here.


Ryan Allen & His Extra Arms Release a Second Solo Album this Saturday

Ryan Allen is one of those guys that you feel like you know because you have seen him on stage so many times throughout the years. That's probably because Ryan's band roster is pretty solid, it includes Thunderbirds Are Now, the Friendly Foes, The Cold Wave, The Red Shirt Brigade, and my personal favorite, Destroy This Place. His latest project has him stepping away from his usual style and stepping into something different.

This weekend Ryan Allen and His Extra Arms will be releasing his second solo album Heart String Soul. The record was recorded in his parents' basement and features some of Detroit's most talented musicians making guest appearances. This includes Brad Allen,  Zach Curd, Sean Sommer, Scott Allen, Nick Piunti,  and Andy Reed.
The album release party will take place this Saturday, March 28th at The Berkley Front. Tickets are $10 at the door for singles and $15 dollars for couples. This fee gets you one copy of the album to take home and listen to. 

Check out what Ryan had to say about his latest project and head out to The Front this Saturday to see him perform live.

HID- Where was this album recorded?
Ryan Allen- "I recorded the album with my dad engineering in the house I lived in from age 12 to 18 (and on and off again, really, until I was 24 and finally moved out). The studio is in the basement at their house and it’s called Our Leisure Studios.

Growing up, I've always had the luxury of having a place that I could play, practice and record music. My parents have always been super supportive, and my dad has a real passion for music. I’m not sure where I’d be as a musician without that basement and all the time I've spent there over the years learning how to be in a band, write songs, and document them. I realize not everybody has grown up in such an encouraging environment, and I don’t take it for granted."

HID- How long did it take you to write it, record it, and master it? 
RA- "The album was written on and off over the last few years, with some songs being completely scrapped, and others being ideas for other projects that were reworked for this one. Even others came pretty late in the game, even after I thought I was done recording (“Keep Me Around”), and I ended up just recording it anyway. I really hunkered down and got 11 songs pretty much together at the beginning of the Summer of 2014, and started recording it right around then as well. The recording took about 5 months, because I could only really work on it when I had time - which I don’t really have a lot of, playing in another band, being a husband, father, and working full time. But I love music, and I was determined to get this thing finished, so I just kept plugging away. Thankfully my dad was always game to keep working even when he was tired, and we pushed through and go it done. My pal Andy Reed then helped mix and master it at his studio in Bay City, and that took a few passes, but maybe only a week or two to nail. He’s a real pro and it was a super easy process working with him."

HID- What was your inspiration on this album? 
RA- "I basically wanted to make a very personal album that was kind of a snapshot of what it’s like to be a 35-year-old guy with a wife, kid, and job, but still have an undying passion to make music. A lot of songs are very true stories about things that have happened in my life, or people that have influenced me, helped me, or given me their love. It’s an album I probably couldn't have written 10 years ago, and I’m happy to say that it’s probably the most honest and open music I've ever created. For some people I guess it’s pretty easy for them to do that, because that’s what they've always done, but for me it was a real challenge to finally get to a place where I was comfortable doing it. But I’m really glad I did."

HID- What is your favorite song on the album and why?
RA- "It’s really hard to say because they all mean something special to me in their own way. I would have to say the song “Angela ’97” is a favorite, mostly because I feel like I managed to write a love song that doesn't come off entirely sappy or contrived. Instead it really is an abbreviated and true story of how my wife Angela and I crossed paths when we were younger, got together in our early 20s, went through some awesome times, some tough times, and came out the other side with a great life and an awesome kid - and how important it is to remember that, even when times can get tough again. I also managed to write an entire chorus just saying her name and make it memorable in a non-Journey/Hall and Oates type way."

Who designed the album cover? 

RA- "The very talented Heather Miller hand drew and inked the cover and created all the hand-written text. I told her what the album was called, and she basically went from there. I love the cover and am really glad she so generously gave her time to create it. Sean Sommer (who also plays drums on the whole album) did the layout, and made it look real sweet."

HID- Were you working on the new DTP album at the same time that you were working on this? 
RA- "Yeah, Destroy This Place has been working on new songs pretty much since January of 2014, and we’re now getting ready to record our third album in the next few weeks. When it rains, it pours, I guess. Songs just kept coming along, and luckily I've been able to sort of easily figure out which project they should be slated for. I wrote a lot of songs for DTP that I really didn't bring to the band either, so I've been living with a huge batch of new material for the last few years. But it always seems that way. When my first solo album came out, the first DTP album came out just a few months later… and it seems like that’s going to happen again. Hopefully the Ryan Allen musical/self-promotion onslaught isn't too annoying throughout the rest of the year. But, you know, I’m happy to be in a position to create music and get it out there two the world, and am really psyched on both projects."

Who is playing the album release party with and can you tell us a little bit about them?
RA- "I have Sean Sommer on drums. He’s got red hair and has probably Photoshopped a picture of a dick on your face at some point. He plays drums with me in Destroy This Place as well, and I think he’s the best damn drummer in this city. I also have Mike “Juice” Majewski playing bass. Most would know him as a member of The Silent Years, though my affection for him comes from his time playing guitar in Rescue - who Thunderbirds are Now! (my old band) toured with many years ago. He’s probably the nicest guy in the world, and also owns and proudly wears a Deftones beanie."

HID- Is there anything else that you would like our readers to know? 
RA- "Only that the album is available now, both digitally and physically. The best place to get it is at Extraarms.bandcamp.com. That way I get all the money and can use it to by my kid more Rescue Bots and Big Hero 6 toys. Thanks."

Love Axe and Javelins will be opening up the show and doors are at 9 p.m. The Berkley Front is located at 3087 12 Mile Rd. in Berkley, Michigan. 


Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Last Thursday with The Seraphine Collective

Once a month The Seraphine Collective takes over the Lager House in Detroit and brings an electic mix of bands to the stage. This month's lineup includes Growwing Pains, Sharkmuffin, Jenny Junior, and Bonehead. All of these bands have at least one female in the lineup. The Collective is very supportive of female musicians and strives to feature bands that showcase talented women.

I am personally looking forward to seeing Sharkmuffin perform live. The band recently recorded their debut album with the legendary Patty Schemel from Hole.

It is only $6 to get in the door, with a dollar from each person going back The Collective. PJ's Lager House is located at 1254 Michigan Ave. and the show starts at 9 p.m.


Win Tickets to See Bayside at The Crofoot Ballroom

This Friday, March 27th Bayside will be making a stop in Pontiac, Michigan to celebrate their 15th birthday. It is hard to believe that is has been 15 years since they broke onto the music scene and sold over a quarter of a million albums. The started in 2000 and signed to Victory Records in 2003. They released four albums on the label before going out on their own. Lead singer Anthony Raneri even broke off and worked on a solo project for a while. They have seen a lot of success and wrote a lot of catchy tunes, it's time to celebrate the birth of this solid band.

They are currently on tour with Senses Fail, Man Overboard and Seaway. Tickets for the event are only $18.50 and can be purchased here. We also have one pair of tickets to giveaway to the show thanks to our friends over at Fusion Shows. If you would like to win a set of tickets to the show, email your full name to hipindetroit@gmail.com with Bayside in the subject line. We will draw a winner on Thursday morning and we will email the winner details on how to claim their prize. 

The band put together a short teaser to get you ready for the show, check it out and head out to the Crofoot this Friday!


Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Win Tickets to See Andrew Jackson Jihad at The Magic Stick

Thursday, March 26th anti-folk, folk- punk rockers Andrew Jackson Jihad will be playing at The Magic Stick alongside The Smith Street BandJeff Rosenstock, and Chumped. I know what you're asking yourself, what the hell is anit-folk, folk- punk? Well that is simple. It's bad ass politically charged punk rock music with a blue grass feel a.k.a. a banjitar and a cello. Basically, it's a solid band and one of the last shows at The Magic Stick, so you would be so lucky to go. 

Tickets are only $16.50 in advance and can be purchased here. We also have one set of tickets to give away thanks to the ladies over at Black Iris Booking, If you would like to enter to win that set of tickets, please email your full name to hipindetroit@gmail.com with Andrew Jackson Jihad in the subject. We will draw the winner the day before the show and email them details on how to claim their prize. 

In the meantime, check out a video from the band to get yourself in the mood for some anti folk, folk punk!


Win Tickets Before You Can Buy Them: Palma Violets @ The Loving Touch

UK rockers Palma Violets just announced that they will be heading back to the U.S. of A this spring and this time around they will be making a stop right here in Metro Detroit. They are set to hit the stage on Thursday, May 14th at The Loving Touch in Ferndale.

Palma Violets hit the ground running when they formed back in 2011. They made a name for themselves with their first single "Best of Friends" followed by their debut album 180. Now they are getting ready to release a new album, Danger In The Club, set to be released in the US on May 5th. Check out the official music video for the title track off the new album below.

Tickets for their Ferndale show are set to go on sale this Friday, March 27th at 10 a.m. and will be $13 in advance or $15 at the door on the day of the show. You can purchase yours online here. 18+ are welcome and doors are set to open at 8 p.m. We are also excited to announce that we are giving you a chance to win a pair of tickets to this show before you can even buy them! To enter to win, just email your full name to hipindetroit@gmail.com with Palma Violets in the subject. We will draw 2 lucky winners this weekend and let them know how to claim their prize. Good luck! 


GiveYoung.org Wants You to Party for a Purpose

In 2006 Rick and Nicole Van House created GiveYoung.org. The idea behind the foundation was to inspire the younger generations to get involved and give back. The couple noticed that younger people had a lot of passion and wanted to make a change, but they had no idea how to get involved. They realized it was simple, they just needed to get us to party for a purpose.

This weekend GiveYoung.org will be hosting Engage 2015 at Westin Book Cadillac hotel in Detroit. This event will feature three different charities teaching you what they do while trying to get you involved in a whole new way. Forgotten Harvest will be packing food in the middle of the room.  Humble Design will be constructing a child's room right in front of our eyes during the event. The Empowerment Plan will be showing us how they construct their one of a kind coats that transform into sleeping bags and Whole Foods Market will have a full produce market set up with all kinds of fruits and vegetables for patrons to learn about and sample.

The event will also feature a charity raffle of artwork created by Detroit's own Camera Jesus. For $20 you can get 5 tickets to win a large canvas print by the legendary photographer.
Photo Credit: Joe Gall a.k.a. Camera Jesus

Tickets for the night are only $40, this includes appetizers. The event will feature three cash bars and 3 DJs, including DJ Graffiti. The party starts at 9 p.m. and tickets are available for purchase here.VIP tickets are already sold out, so make sure to get your tickets as soon as possible!


Sunday, March 22, 2015

Win Tickets to See The Hand in the Ocean

Flyer by: Brent Mosser

It has been awhile since anyone has heard from Detroit's own The Hand in the Ocean, but the wait is over. This Saturday, March 28th they will be playing at the Majestic Cafe and it sounds like this might be the last chance to see this band for a while! So you won't want to miss it! Plus, the lineup is pretty stellar, it includes Carmel LiburdiAnd The Kids (MA), and Vio/Mire (RI). 

All ages are welcome to come to this show. Doors are set to open at 8 p.m. and admission is only $8. You can pick your tickets up ahead of time here or fee free at the Garden Bowl

We are also giving away two pairs of tickets to this show. It's going to be a great night of music! We certainly hope this isn't the last that we hear from The Hand in the Ocean, but just in case they don't play for awhile, we want to make sure you are there. To enter to win tickets, just email your name to hipindetroit@gmail.com with The Hand in the Ocean in the subject line. We will draw two winners the morning of the show and let them know how to claim their prize.


Win Tickets to See Revelations: A Tribute to Iron Maiden

Cover bands are not just for Halloween any more, it's fun to see a solid cover band anytime of the year. This Thursday, March 26th St. Andrew's is hosting Revelations: A Tribute to Iron Maiden.  Revelations are one of the most renowned cover bands around. They have even opened for Marilyn Manson.

Tickets for the night are only $12 and can be purchased here. We also have a few passes to give away to a few fans who want to rock out to some of the best metal songs that have ever been written. If you would like to win a par of tickets to the show, please email your full name to hipindetroit@gmail.com with Revelations in the subject. We will draw a few winners the day before the show and email them details on how to claim their prize.

Check out this video from a month ago to see what you're in for if you head out to the show!


Friday, March 20, 2015

The Muggs - Straight Up Boogaloo Release Party

This Saturday, March 21st head out to The Magic Bag in Ferndale where The Muggs will be hosting their album release party! The new album, Straight Up Boogaloo, is being released by Bellyache Records and marks the bands fourth studio album. It features 8 tracks available on black or green vinyl and everyone that purchases an album will also get a digital download, which includes two additional songs. Check out a preview of Straight Up Boogaloo below.

Records will be available this Saturday night at the show or you can pick one up online here. Joining The Muggs on stage this weekend are The Scrappers, the new project from Eddie Baranek (The Sights) along with Pete Ballard, Dave Lawson and Ben Luckett. Admission to the show is $10 and tickets can be purchased in advance here. 18+ are welcome. 

The Muggs will be heading to Spain shortly after this show in support of this new album. So you definitely are not going to want to miss this!!! Plus, whenever The Muggs play, it's always a party! 

For more information on this event click here. The Magic Bag is located at 22920 Woodward Ave. in Ferndale. 


The 2015 Freep Film Festival and A Closer Look at "N'kisi Concorde"

Last night the second annual Freep Film Festival kicked off in Detroit. The event, put on by the Free Press, features several documentaries all with a tie to Detroit. The film screenings will take place throughout Detroit, but mainly at the DIA and The Fillmore.

There are a ton of great films being shown at this festival, with subjects ranging from the Fire Department to Funny or Die to The Black Panthers. You can see a full list of films here. One that caught our eye is a film entitled N’kisi Concorde. It tells the story of two artists in Detroit who might be considered unconventional to some. The one is the man behind Dmytro's Sculpture, also known as Hamtramck's Disneyland, and the other is the man behind the African Bead Museum. It will be shown this Saturday, March 21st at 1:30 p.m. at the Marvin and Betty Danto Lecture Hall at the Detroit Institute of Arts. You can check out the trailer for the documentary below.

We caught up with the creators of the N'kisi Concorde, Nikki Sass and Brittin Richter, to find out more about the film, the duo behind it, and the upcoming screening.
Photo Borrowed from N'kisi Concorde's Facebook Page
HID- What is your role in the making of this film?
Nikki- "I’m the director and editor."
Brittin- "I’m the director of photography and executive producer. I push buttons on cameras and pay for stuff."

HID- What does the name mean?
Brittin- "We wanted both of our artists to be represented by the name. A n’kisi is an African power object that was used to communicate with the dead. They are used to do things like remove negativity, promote positivity and success. Dabls built one in the sculpture garden. Dmytro has a Concorde plane in his backyard. Combining N’kisi and Concorde represented for us our two artists and their vehicles of positivity."

HID- Tell us about the film.
Nikki- "The film follows the constant change happening within Dabls and Dmytro installations over the course of a year. It’s told chronologically with emphasis on the seasons and how they affect their work.

I wanted to focus on Detroit artists who had been making work here for decades, making art directly for the surrounding neighborhood, going back into the late 80s/early 90s up until now. And, in Dmytro’s a case, for whatever reason just hadn't gotten the attention he deserved."

HID- What was your favorite part about making this film?
Nikki- "After being out in the cold shooting, or hearing a great story during an interview and coming home and watching the footage for the first time. There’s a bit of anxiety when you’re recording everything that comes from worrying about technical things - is the sound okay, is there enough light, is there something embarrassing in the background of the shot? When you get back to the studio and actually watch the material you captured and you still get goosebumps or feel a particular piece of wisdom that was communicated - that’s rad. I loved having almost everyone who participated over to our loft to watch it."

HID- You guys have received some pretty awesome recognition for "N’kisi Concorde"! Did actually get to go to the Bahamas International Film Festival along with the other festivals you were recognized by? Do you have plans to enter other festivals?
Brittin- "For sure! The BIFF was actually the first festival we got accepted for and when a fest like that is your world premier you have to go! Leslie Vanderpool is the mastermind behind that festival and showed us an awesome time and we met a lot of really amazing filmmakers there. I went to the Cinema on the Bayou festival in Louisiana recently and saw a bunch of other amazing films about representing your cultural roots in a constantly homogenizing world. We unfortunately didn't make it to the Netherlands for DocFeed but were psyched to have our European premier there none the less."

HID-  How did you get into film making?
Brittin- "Both of my parents actually worked in film during my childhood so I was doomed from the beginning. Nikki and I met working on a kids TV show which was the start of her foray into film world."

HID- What is your favorite project you have ever worked on?
Brittin- "I directed a trippy music video for experimental electronic duo CPU/GOD two years ago which was awesome. I sent a really far out treatment to Andrew Grathwohl (one of the music wizards in the group) that was recorded in apple text to speech robot voice and he was just like “This all sounds great. Do it just like that”. A lot of times when you’re making work for somebody else's project you don’t get a lot of creative freedom and CPU/GOD was just like “This is nuts, do exactly what you want.”"
Nikki- "N'kisi, we've met a lot of friends through making it."

HID- If you could tell someone that has never worked on a film or in the film industry before one thing about what goes into making any sort of film or movie, what would it be?
Brittin- "There are a lot of moving parts to every film production and they all have to work together or the whole thing doesn't work which is frustrating, but it’s also kind of what lends itself to the whole movie magic side of things. Particularly with a documentary like this a lot of the stuff that ended up being important came up very unexpectedly so you have to be patient because holy shit this stuff takes forever."
Nikki- "On larger movies everything is planned by someone, down to the graphics on the cereal box in the background or the time on an actor's watch. There are so many layers of detail. The difference with a lot of documentaries is that it's at times important to embrace the chaos."

HID- What's next for you? Any upcoming projects in the works?
Brittin- "Hopefully after this film this weekend we’re going to scout some locations for a short about a blind, homeless wizard that we’re going to try to shoot this summer. We both moved to Atlanta recently so we’re still kind of getting settled there. I directed a music video for the first time in awhile a few weeks ago so I’m trying to get back into that groove." [The aforementioned music video is for Detroit's own Axe Ripper - Art of Misery. Check it out here.]
Nikki- "I'm pumped about our upcoming short. I finished drawing the storyboards and am starting to build on the look I'd like it to have. We're also working on making our new apartment cool. Later this year I want to direct a music video for a good friend of mine."

HID- Why should people come out to your screening at the Freep Film Festival on Saturday?
Brittin- "People should come out to see the cinematic portrayal of these OG folk art masters. These works are constantly changing and this film is a great way to see all of the subtle changes that happen week by week compressed into a year long waterfall of outsider art."

HID- Anything else you would like to add?
Brittin & Nikki- "Thanks for talking to us about our movie! We’re looking forward to seeing everybody there!"

If you would like to attend the Freep Film Festival's screening of N’kisi Concorde tickets are $10 and can be purchased in advance here. For a full list of films being shown at the Freep Film Festival, as well as screening times and ticket sales, click here. The 2015 Freep Film Festival runs through Sunday, March 22nd.


Thursday, March 19, 2015

Speak No Evil at The Loving Touch this Weekend!

This Sunday, March 22nd Speak No Evil will be taking over The Loving Touch. Brought to you by the fine folks at Cthulhu Entertainment and Hell City Records, this event is a show featuring 6 bands. One thing that all of these bands have in common, they all are bands without vocals, hence the name "Speak No Evil".

This is the 2nd Year for Speak No Evil and they have put together quite the lineup. It includes Beast In The FieldThe Amino AcidsThe End Of The OceanSunlight Ascending (1 night reunion), Man Mountain and Suburban Bloodshed. Admission is only $8 in advance and tickets can be purchased here. The day of the show, admission will be $10 at the door. 18+ are welcome and doors are set to open at 7 p.m.

The Loving Touch is located at 22634 Woodward Ave. in Ferndale. For more information on this show, click here.


Tuesday, March 17, 2015

The Marche Du Nain Rouge

Detroit has been through some rough times over the years. Some people blame the car companies or the riots as being the downfall of Detroit, others claim that Detroit's fate was written in the stars.  Legend has it that Detroit's founder Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac met with a psychic who warned him to beware of of the Nain Rouge. The Nain Rouge was a little red devil that Cadillac had seen in his dreams, a little red devil that was taunting him. The fortune teller warned him that the little red devil was the messenger of doom, the embodiment of all the anger, pride, and envy that was holding him back. The fortune teller also warned him that if he choose to settle here in Detroit it might pay off one day, but the struggle to get there would be an uphill battle full of set backs. She also warned him to stay away and resist taunting the devil, but he didn't listen. When he met the little red devil he yelled at him and hit him with a stick, and of course he settled here in Detroit.

I have never been one to believe in urban legends, but you have to admit that this lady was right on board. Detroit is a beautiful place full of amazing people, but it has been a long uphill battle to keep her going at times. Of course it doesn't matter if this story is true or not because what it stands for is a lot more important. Cadillac died penniless, but the city that he created carried on to thrive and grow.  Perseverance in the face of the impossible is what Detroit is known for. We aren't about to let any little red devil win this or any other battle. This is why we gather once a year to chase that damn Nain Rouge right out of town. We gather as a united peoples to celebrate the uphill battle that we have been on. We have come very far, but we have a long way to go.

Lets all join together this Sunday, March 22nd and chase the devil right out of town! We will be meeting in the Traffic Jam & Snug parking lot on the corner of West Canfield and 2nd. There, the March du Nain Rouge will begin and will progress along 2nd Ave. ending at The Masonic Temple. This event is FREE and everyone is encouraged to come out in masks or costumes so that little red devil doesn't see your face and taunt you throughout the next year.
For more information about the event click here.


My Visit to The Detroit Parade Company

Once a year The Parade Company brings us America’s Thanksgiving Parade. The streets of Detroit are taken over by clowns, floats, balloons and thousands of smiling people. The Parade Company owns hundreds of costumes, floats, and big headed characters. I recently found out that they work all year round to repair and create new items for the coming year's events. I also learned that they store all of their floats, costumes, and props in a huge warehouse in Detroit. I also discovered that you can take a tour of the facility and immediately went and did just that.

Walking around the warehouse is like being inside Willy Wonka's factory. Floats that I had seen on TV were right there in front of my eyes. There were rows of big heads, including celebrity appearances by Detroit stars Aretha Franklin and Diana Ross. They were building new Detroit Tigers' bobble heads right in front of my eyes. There were new floats, old floats, and floats that were being repaired. There were racks of costumes, fun mirrors, and pictures and statues of clowns everywhere.  It was surreal to say the least. I cannot imagine how exciting it must be for a child to walk through the building. I'm pretty sure my tour guide may have thought I was a child with how many times I screamed, clapped and snapped a picture while I was walking through. The best part is that anyone can take a tour or rent this space out for an event. Personally, I keep picturing Her Dark Host preforming next to all the big heads for some reason.

Tours of the warehouse are available for groups of ten and above. It costs $8 for children ages 3-17 and $12 for adults. Visit the parade Companies website here for more information on booking a tour. I highly suggest this one, it was a really cool experience!


The Weekend that was Berserker II

Photo Credit: Christie Laabs
This past weekend Veronica & Shawn Knight did it again! They managed to bring together some favorite locals and incredible national acts for one outrageous music festival.

Berserker II took over The Loving Touch and The WAB this weekend for the second year in a row. It featured local favorites like Against the Grain, Hellmouth, Bill Bondsmen and Child Bite, alongside huge national acts like Iron Reagan and Poison Idea. Including Pre-Serker, this fest brought out over 50 punk and metal bands that fans could see for less than a buck a piece. 

Every band this weekend was awesome, as were the crowds. We were able to grab a few videos that you can check out below.

Detroit is so lucky to have a fest like this. Normally we would tell you highlights from the weekend or favorite bands that played, but the lineup was so stacked we couldn't possibly pick. We can tell you the entire weekend was a blast and you definitely won't want to miss Berserker next year! This year was even better than last and we look forward to seeing this fest grow into something huge! Thanks Shawn, Veronica, and everyone involved for putting together such a kick ass event!


Win Tickets to The North Wind Tour at Small's

This Saturday, March 21st The North Wind Tour will be kicking off at Small's in Hamtramck. This tour features Michigan's own The Gasoline Gypsies and The Native Howl. The two bands are heading out on the road together for a few weekend treks throughout Michigan and the Midwest, with stops in Saginaw, Lansing, South Bend, Kalamazoo and Grand Rapids. This weekend's kickoff will also feature The Social Bandits.

Admission to Saturday's show is only $5 and tickets can be purchased in advance here. Thanks to Music Movers LLC, we e are also giving away two pairs of tickets to this show! To enter to win, just email your full name to hipindetroit@gmail.com with North Wind Tour in the subject line. We will draw 2 winners the day before the show.

Small's is located at 10339 Conant in Hamtramck. For more details on this show, click here.


Monday, March 16, 2015

Win Tickets to Retro Reboot

The '90s was a very special decade. The clothing trends were very odd and ever changing, there are so many good looks that one can turn to to represent the decade accurately. For instance, one could rock the backwards hat, over sized clothes, and crazy colors look that TLC rocked in the 90's.
Or you could go for the vests, light colored jeans, blazers, and mini dresses with flowers that the 90210 crew rocked so well. 

You could rock the boy band frosted tips and shiny jackets that *N Sync would sport.

Or you could go for the plaid on plaid Clueless look that made Alica Silverstone famous.
Maybe you would rather rock all Tommy Hilfiger everything.

Whatever trend you followed, it is undeniable that the '90s were an awesome decade. This Thursday, March 19th you can relive these years at St. Andrew's Hall. They are hosting a huge dance party called Retro Reboot. It will feature a live band, The Hot Sauce Committee, that will be playing all of your favorite 90s hits, from all different genres. There might even be some '80s tunes thrown in there too. Party goers are encouraged to get in the spirit and wear their favorite look from the decade.

Tickets to Retro Reboot are only $10 and can be purchased here. We are also getting some lucky people into this party for FREE! If you want to party this Thursday night like it's 1990-something, email your full name to hipindetroit@gmail.com with Retro Reboot in the subject.

The party starts at 8 p.m. this Thursday. Saint Andrew's Hall is located at 431 East Congress in Detroit.


Sunday, March 15, 2015

Win Tickets to see Pennywise WSG A Wilhelm Scream

Pennywise found their way into the mainstream music scene without every selling out or signing to  a record label. In fact, they have sold over 3 million records worldwide without any label support. There also seems to be more punk rockers with Pennywise tattoos than any other band, Crass being the only close second that I can think of.

This Friday, March 20th political punk rockers Pennywise be taking over St. Andrew's Hall in Detroit. They will be playing alongside A Wilhelm ScreamTeenage Bottlerocket, and Young Hunger. Tickets for the event are only $20 in advance and they can be purchased here. The show will be starting at 7 p.m. and all ages are welcome to attend. 

We also have two pairs of tickets to give away to the show. If you are interested in seeing one of punk's biggest legends for free you can email your full name to hipindetroit@gmail.com with Pennywise in the subject. We will draw two names the day before the show and send them details on how to claim their prize.