DEBUT EP BETTER “BELATED.” THAN NEVER

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WORDS BY JOE FITZPATRICK AND TIM FOGG

PHOTOS BY JESSICA BRYCE AND BILLY SOURS

How do you take your emo pop? BELATED. prefers it “acoustic driven.”

In the driver’s seat is Jordon Ronan, the former vocalist of SHARP SLEEVES, a Blacksburg-based pop punk band previously known as HERO TO HUMAN.  In February 2016, in between college classes and writing music, Ronan drafted Tim Fogg from the Richmond punk band A COLLEGIATE AFFAIR to play lead guitar.

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THE SPLIT SECONDS FIND THEIR SWEET SPOT IN D.C.

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INTERVIEW BY JOE FITZPATRICK

PHOTOS BY AMANDA LIN AND MIKE DOBBINS

Hailing from our Nation’s capital,  THE SPLIT SECONDS have graced the stages at a multitude of the District’s well-known music venues including DC9, Tree House Lounge, and The Wonderland Ballroom, among others.  THE SPLIT SECONDS dabble in the punk rock of the 70s while also adding in some modern-day flair with undertones of 60’s pop and garage rock. 

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HOUSE SHOWS & TACO TRUCKS: BRICK TOP DROPS NEW EP

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INTERVIEW BY JOE FITZPATRICK

PHOTOS PROVIDED BY CHRIS BAKER

What do you get when you combine the grunge of Dave Grohl, a bunch of tacos, and four guys that have an affinity for 90’s punk and stoner rock? None other than BRICK TOP. Initially formed at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Va., the band includes guitarist and lead vocalist Chris Issa, drummer Rob Seaver, bassist Matt Carrier, and guitarist Chris Baker. In nearly two years, three-quarters of the band have moved to their  home base in the Washington, D.C. metro area, while Baker remains rooted in Richmond. Despite the distance, their friendship and love for music keeps them connected.

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NO LONGER THE UNDERDOGS OF VIRGINIA POP PUNK

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INTERVIEW BY JOE FITZPATRICK

PHOTOS BY DEVOTER VISUALS AND THROUGH IT ALL PHOTOGRAPHY

VIDEO BY TD WEHLE

Since forming in summer 2014, UNDERDOG CHAMPS have been grinding hard to gain notoriety in the local scene and beyond. They released their debut EP Picked Last on May 30, 2015, and they have opened for some of the biggest names in pop punk and alternative music. It’s safe to say that these guys aren’t underdogs any longer.

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AMERICAN TELEVISION: MATURE POP PUNK WITH OPTIMISM

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INTERVIEW BY JOE FITZPATRICK

PHOTOS BY STEVE ROVERY

Though the pop punk genre is typically associated with the youth, the guys in AMERICAN TELEVISION prove that even 30 year olds can rock just as hard and be just as posi. Based in the Washington, D.C. metro area, the young band recently released their debut EP, Let’s Play Two, featuring a couple energetic songs that will get you moving. The band has been busy writing and playing shows around the area, supporting other bands, and spreading their love for the Baltimore Orioles.

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FRIENDS WITH MONSTERS DEBUT “HANDSOME AMERICA”

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ALBUM REVIEW BY JOE FITZPATRICK

Usually these days when people think of pop punk, the word generic frequently comes to mind, which was my first thought when I heard the opening riffs of FRIENDS WITH MONSTERS debut EP Handsome America. However, when the band broke into chorus, I was struck by the catchy melody of vocalist Brian Pursel alongside the more aggressive guitars and bass of his band mates. The song made me feel nostalgic of simpler times when I was younger when I didn’t have a care in the world other than Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, pizza parties, and Street Sharks.

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RICHMOND’S BOMBSHELL ON THE VERGE OF RELEASING EXPLOSIVE DEBUT ALBUM

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INTERVIEW BY MATT WALKER

PHOTOS BY JENNIFER LOTTIE

On April 30, 2015, one of Richmond’s latest bands riding the pop punk party wave dropped their debut single on the scene. Collectively known as BOMBSHELL, their sound on “You Wanted Honesty” is as explosive with energy as their name implies. Individually, they are comprised of vocalist Gregory, guitarists Rory and Hugo, and drummer Jacob. They are on the verge of releasing their debut album, and they will be performing at The National on July 11. We spoke with Gregory and Hugo about how their band fits into the growing pop punk scene in Virginia.

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ALBUM REVIEW: PUSHIN’ MONGO BY CENTERFOLDS

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Pushin’ Mongo by CENTERFOLDS

https://centerfoldsva.bandcamp.com

ALBUM REVIEW BY MATT WALKER

CENTERFOLDS, one of the premiere bands in the crop of pop punk acts hailing from Richmond, Va., will release their latest EP Pushin’ Mongo on May 7, 2015.  Continuing to prove that pop punk is truly not dead, CENTERFOLDS has maintained the sound that any NEW FOUND GLORY nut longs for. They continue that sound on Pushin’ Mongo, which I have been listening to for the past two hours straight.

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UNDERDOG CHAMPS COMBINES MULTIPLE GENRES TO FORM MELODIC POP PUNK “SUPER BAND” WITH PLANS FOR A THREE-SONG EP TO BE RELEASED LATER THIS YEAR

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INTERVIEW BY JOE FITAPATRICK

PHOTOS BY TYLER MAZZA AND AGNES OWUSU

VIDEO BY JOEY CATHEY

Formed by current and former members of some of Northern Virginia’s top bands, UNDERDOG CHAMPS are one of the latest pop punk bands that have “posi-jumped” into the growing scene in the DMV area. Initially, the band began as a solo project of lead vocalist Mark “Blackhawk” Bradley. With support from guitarist and backing vocalist Nick Jones, as well as guitarist Tyler Mazza, bassist Justin Mason, and drummer Josh Bailey, the band has expanded to be something new entirely, combining each band member’s past experiences in indie rock, metalcore, pop punk, and alternative music genres to form one cohesive sound.

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DIY SINGER/SONGWRITER OKLAHOMA CAR CRASH RECORDING NEW ALBUM WITH LONGTIME FRIEND AND MUSICAL PARTNER WITH PLANS FOR ALBUM RELEASE TOUR THIS SUMMER

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INTERVIEW BY MATT WALKER

PHOTOS BY HEATHER MCPHERSON, NAT BROWN, AND DAKOTA FLOYD

Nat Brown — also known as OKLAHOMA CAR CRASH (OKCC) — is all about DIY, from self-booked tours to more than five self-released EPs. He was even doing-it-all music wise, that is until his recent announcement of a new permanent member. While not on tour or visiting his favorite coffee shop, he is writing and recording new music, most of which for OKCC’s next release sometime this summer. We recently had a chance to get an idea of exactly what Brown was up to, as well as find out about the future of OKCC.

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