PUBLIC ENEMY The Iconic Group That Started a Revolution Announces Its Return to Def Jam Recordings

‘WHAT YOU GONNA DO WHEN THE GRID GOES DOWN’New Studio Album Out September 25th P.E.’s First Release for Def Jam in Over Two Decades

“FIGHT THE POWER: REMIX 2020” – LISTEN & WATCHNew Version of the Iconic Social Justice Anthem Opened the 2020 BET Awards ft. Nas, Rapsody, Black Thought, YG, Jahi & Questlove

 “Fight The Power: 2020 Remix” Cover Art – DOWNLOAD HI RES “Cultural Institutions are important. Being an integral part of one is an honor bestowed and to uphold,” says Chuck D. “Public Enemy songs are forever sonic prints in the sands of time. And it’s time – it’s necessary – to bring the noise again from a place called home. Def Jam. Fight The Power 2020.” – Chuck D

After over two decades, Public Enemy – the iconic group whose message of revolution, social justice, and racial equality is more potent and necessary today than ever – finally reunites with the historic label it helped build into a globally recognized brand: Def Jam Recordings.

Public Enemy and Def Jam have reunited to officially release “Fight the Power: Remix 2020,” the explosive remix that opened the 2020 BET Awards in June featuring Nas, Rapsody, Black Thought, YG, Jahi and Questlove. “Fight the Power (2020 Remix),” is the first offering from the group’s forthcoming new studio album What You Gonna Do When The Grid Goes Down, set for release via Def Jam on September 25th.

“Cultural Institutions are important. Being an integral part of one is an honor bestowed and to uphold,” says Chuck D. “Public Enemy songs are forever sonic prints in the sands of time. And it’s time – it’s necessary – to bring the noise again from a place called home. Def Jam. Fight The Power 2020.” Flavor Flav adds, “Def Jam is like the house we grew up in. It’s cool to be home.” 

“Like so many of us, I have long been a Public Enemy fan, and the group was incredibly formative for me and the path I would take,” said Def Jam Chairman & CEO, UMG General Counsel Jeff Harleston. “PE has consistently been a living example of how music can profoundly move and unite people, and affect real change in the national conversation. As we continue to confront inequality and injustice, we need PE’s voice in the national dialogue. Def Jam is proud to partner with Chuck and welcome Public Enemy home.” 

“For true fans of hip-hop all over the world, this is a historic moment,” said Def Jam GM & EVP Rich Isaacson. “Bringing Public Enemy home to Def Jam – in a time when their message is more necessary than ever – is a profound statement and a much-needed reunion. We are beyond excited to once again lock arms with the legendary Public Enemy.” 

Earlier this summer, Public Enemy released “State of the Union (STFU),” produced by DJ Premier. Their fiery return to the frontlines takes on Donald Trump and his fascist regime. An unflinching statement about the destruction the current administration has unleashed on the country and its people, “State of the Union (STFU)” speaks truth to power while urging people to fight against racism, injustice and oppression with their vote.   

What You Gonna Do When The Grid Goes Down is available now for pre-order, along with exclusive Public Enemy merchandise at www.publicenemy.com.

Public Enemy photo by Eitan Miskevich

Could Michael Keaton Really Return As Batman?

There’s been an unlikely-sounding rumor circulating around Hollywood in recent weeks, and if you hadn’t heard it before, you’ve just heard it in the title of this article Allegedly, Michael Keaton is in talks to return to the role of ‘Batman.’ Keaton is 68 years old. He hasn’t played Batman since “Batman Returns” in 1992. More importantly, someone else has the official job of being the DC Universe’s version of “Batman.” Could there be something behind this unexpected story, or is it nonsense? Let’s see if we can separate the fact from the fiction.

First of all, we know that Robert Pattinson is Batman. The former “Twilight” star won the role last year after Ben Affleck’s short and uninspiring time in the Bat-suit, and he doesn’t make his debut as the character until his movie “The Batman” comes out next year. It’s public knowledge that he’s contracted to more than one appearance as the character, and fans are already openly speculating about whether the timeline of the on-screen universe could be twisted enough to allow Pattinson’s Batman to come up against Joaquin Phoenix’s gritty and compelling version of the Joker in a film for the mid-2020s. Pattinson is a young, strong man, and won’t be giving the role of a lifetime up any time soon unless his debut in the famous costume is a box office bomb. That seems unlikely.

This Michael Keaton film, if rumors are to be believed, won’t have anything to do with the Pattinson films and won’t pollute the existing DC Comics timeline. In fact, it won’t even be a standalone movie in its own right. Instead, Keaton’s big comeback would be for a cameo role in the upcoming film “The Flash,” starring Ezra Miller as title character Barry Allen. Those of you who hoped that the trend for superhero movies might have come to an end after the last “Avengers” film hit the big screen are in for a disappointment. There are plenty more to come, and “The Flash” is just one of them. According to insiders who claim to have seen the script and are familiar with the project, it calls for an appearance by a senior Batman, accompanied by Michelle Pfieffer, who will apparently reprise her role as Catwoman from “Batman Returns” alongside the star.

If the thought of bringing back Keaton for a throwaway performance upsets you, don’t lose hope just yet. Look away now if you don’t want to see a potential spoiler, but apparently, this new “Flash” film will create an alternative reality within the DC Comics universe, allowing Keaton’s Batman to exist independently of Pattinson’s. Keaton would then appear as Batman in a number of other DC Comics projects, and may eventually get a new film as the fabled Caped Crusader in his own right. At this point, all of this is little more than speculation, but the news has been reported in so many different publications that it would be rational to assume that there’s at least some fire to go with all the smoke. One publication that’s gone a step further than all the others is the Hollywood Reporter, which claims that Keaton’s Batman will be a mentor figure to other superheroes right across the DC Universe, not dissimilar to the role Nick Fury plays in Marvel films.

The idea of an older Bruce Wayne or Batman is a fascinating one, and one that we’ve never seen explored on the big screen before. Presumably, he’d be disinclined to put the Bat-suit on unless the situation becomes excessively grim, but the concept of a Batman who has spent an entire lifetime fighting crime and is now headed for retirement is an interesting one. We’re even more interested in the idea of him having some kind of late-life domestic bliss with Selina Kyle, who will presumably also have said goodbye to her days of wearing a latex catsuit. The idea opens up a series of possibilities that couldn’t be explored within an ordinary “Batman” movie, and it’s original. Originality doesn’t come along often in superhero films, and so when it does, it ought to be applauded.

The fact that there’s been so much buzz among fans about the possibility of seeing Keaton as Batman again should be enough to confirm to DC that the idea is worth pursuing. Part of the appeal will be down to nostalgia. With few exceptions, the older “Batman” films are more widely appreciated by the public than the newer “Dawn of Justice” era films. While we won’t pretend that online slots websites are a perfect measure for this, if you checked one, you’d see what we mean. You’re highly likely to find Crime online slots based on “Batman Begins,” and the old Adam West “Batman” series. You’re far less likely to see anything featuring Ben Affleck’s face. The companies who make those online slots know which incarnations of Batman are likely to tempt people into spending their money, and if they know it, movie producers know it as well.

Keaton’s relationship with Batman over the years has been complicated. It’s been said of the character that it either makes your career or destroys it. Christian Bale’s acting career reached the apex of Hollywood after his “Batman” appearances. Val Kilmer’s was utterly destroyed. George Clooney got away with it because he demonstrated that he had a sense of humor about the dire “Batman” film he made, and Keaton seemed to disappear for a while after 1992. For the rest of the 1990s, he complained that the movies had painted him into a corner and made him typecast. Within the past decade, though, he’s had a late-career resurgence and even felt comfortable performing a pastiche of both himself and the character in 2014’s Oscar-winning film “Birdman.” If he’s entered into talks about becoming Batman again, it’s a sign that he’s finally at peace with the role and his own past.

DC probably wanted to keep this information under wraps, and they’ll be annoyed that it’s leaked, so don’t expect confirmation about Keaton’s involvement from them any time soon. Until we get solid news, excited fans will be projecting the Bat sign into the sky and hoping Keaton answers it.

OLD 97’S Return With New Album Twelfth Out August 21 on ATO Records

“One of the most intensely joyful experiences we’ve ever had as a band.” – Rhett Miller

Watch the Video for First Single “Turn Off The TV” HERE

Photo credit: Alysse Gafkjen

“Terse, wry, and supremely catchy roots-rock.” – THE ATLANTIC

“A well-loved pioneering force in the alt-country movement… [they’ve] still got the same raucous, sweaty energy that’s made [them] so beloved all this time.” – NPR

“Blistered, blasted, and brilliant.” – NEW YORKER

Old 97’s, the iconic alt-country outfit fronted by Rhett Miller, is returning with their twelfth album, the aptly titled Twelfth, to be released on August 21 on ATO Records. Twenty-seven years in, Old 97’s still features its original lineup – Miller, guitarist Ken Bethea, bassist Murry Hammond, and drummer Philip Peeples – and Twelfth is a testament to the band’s staying power. The album’s cover image of former Dallas Cowboys quarterback Roger Staubach is both an homage to Miller’s childhood hero and a recognition that, in making their livings as musicians, the 97’s themselves have achieved their lifelong dreams.

In an interview with Rolling Stone, Miller talks about how his five-year sobriety influenced the new album, saying, “Going back in, I thought, ‘What if I don’t bring anything to the table? What if I’m like Samson and the whiskey was my long hair and I cut it off and can’t write songs anymore?’… But [Twelfth] was the first record where, top to bottom, I felt I was back in the driver’s seat, found my voice, and came out the other side. It feels good.”

The band shares Twelfth’s first single “Turn Off The TV” today alongside a video directed by Liam Lynch that features Puddles the Clown as well as footage of the band throughout their career. Watch the video below and pre-order Twelfth HERE.

Old 97’s – TwelfthAugust 21, 2020 – ATO Records

1. The Dropouts

2. This House Got Ghosts

3. Turn Off The TV

4. I Like You Better

5. Happy Hour

6. Belmont Hotel

7. Confessional Boxing

8. Diamonds on Neptune

9. Our Year

10. Bottle Rocket Baby

11. Absence (What We’ve Got)

12. Why Don’t We Ever Say We’re Sorry

MORE ON TWELFTH:

“Somehow what we’ve got never breaks down,” Rhett Miller sings on Old 97’s exhilarating new album, Twelfth. At first, the line comes off as a boast, as a declaration of invincibility from a band that’s managed to survive three decades of rock and roll debauchery, but as the phrase repeats over and over again, it slowly transforms into something more incredulous, something more vulnerable, something deeply human. 

“We experienced some close calls over the last few years,” says Miller, “and I think that led us to this dawning realization of the fragility of it all. At the same time, it also led us to this increased gratitude for the music and the brotherhood we’ve been so lucky to share. I think all of that combined to make recording this album one of the most intensely joyful experiences we’ve ever had as a band.” 

That joy is utterly palpable on Twelfth. Loose and raw, the record is an ecstatic celebration of survival, a resounding ode to endurance and resilience from a veteran group that refuses to rest on their considerable laurels. Working out of Sputnik Sound in Nashville, Miller and his longtime bandmates—bassist Murry Hammond, guitarist Ken Bethea, and drummer Philip Peeples—teamed up once again with GRAMMY-winning producer Vance Powell (Chris Stapleton, Jack White), and while the resulting album boasts all the hallmarks of a classic Old 97’s record (sex and booze, laughter and tears, poetry and blasphemy), it also showcases a newfound perspective in its writing and craftsmanship, a maturity and appreciation that can only come with age and experience. Perhaps the band is growing up; maybe they’re just getting started. Either way, Old 97’s have never been happier to be alive. 

“You have to take pride in the unlikeliness of it all,” says Miller. “It’s mind boggling to think that we’ve been able to last this long, that we’ve been able to support ourselves and our families on our own terms for almost thirty years. Twelve is a lot of records.” 

Formed in Dallas, Texas, Old 97’s first emerged in the early ’90s with an adrenaline pumping blend of rock and roll swagger, punk snarl, and old-school twang that quickly brought them into the national spotlight. Conventional wisdom places the band at the forefront of a musical movement that would come to be known as “alternative country,” but, as the New York Times so succinctly put it, their sound always “leaned more toward the Clash than the Carter Family.” Fueled by breakneck tempos, distorted guitars, and wry storytelling, the foursome built a reputation for high-energy albums and even higher energy shows, earning themselves performances everywhere from Conan and Letterman to Bonnaroo and Lollapalooza alongside countless rave reviews. NPR lauded the group as a “pioneering force,” while Rolling Stone hailed their music’s “whiskey-wrecked nihilism and slow-burn heartbreak,” and The New Yorker praised their songwriting as “blistered, blasted, and brilliant.” On top of his prodigious output with Old 97’s, Miller simultaneously established himself as a prolific solo artist, as well, releasing eight studio albums under his own name that garnered similarly wide-ranging acclaim and landed in a slew of prominent film and television soundtracks. A gifted writer beyond his music, Miller also contributed essays and short stories to The Atlantic, SalonMcSweeney’s, and Sports Illustrated among others, and in 2019, he released his debut book, a collection of poetry for children, via Little, Brown and Company. 

While part of Old 97’s charm has always been the air of playful invulnerability they exude onstage every night, reality began catching up with the band in 2017. The night before a television appearance in support of the group’s most recent album, Graveyard Whistling, Peeples collapsed in a hotel parking lot, falling backwards and cracking his skull on a concrete abutment. He spent weeks in the ICU and was forced to miss the first leg of tour. Bethea, meanwhile, began to notice a loss of feeling in the fingers of his right hand. As his condition continued to deteriorate on the road, the numbness spread to his leg, and he was eventually forced to undergo spinal surgery in order to regain full motor control. Miller, for his part, found himself at more of an existential crossroads, questioning attitudes and behaviors he’d long taken for granted. Yes, he was a rock and roll star (whatever that means nowadays), but he was also a father and a husband, and he decided it was long since time to get sober.  

“Back when we were in our 20’s, we put ourselves through these terrible trials because we thought we could survive anything,” says Miller. “But over the last few years, it started becoming clear that we’re human.”  

Rather than slow things down, the band decided to embrace their mortality as all the more reason to seize the day. Life is short—a lesson that was hammered home on the group’s first day of recording in Nashville, when a series of deadly tornadoes ripped through town—and Twelfth is the sound of Old 97’s recommitting themselves to making the most of every moment they’ve got left. Addictive opener “The Dropouts” sets the stage, taking stock of the band’s journey from its very first days, when they cut their teeth playing the bars of Deep Ellum in exchange for pitchers of beer and pizza. Like much of the record to come, it’s a nostalgic look back on simpler times, but it smartly avoids looking at the past through rose-colored glasses, instead recognizing that change is neither inherently good nor bad, only inevitable. 

“There’s a line about sleeping on hardwood floors in that song,” says Miller, “and that’s what we did in the early days. But that image of hardwood floors keeps coming back and building on itself in different songs throughout the album, and over time it begins to mean different things as we grow up and start families and own homes.” 

Miller has a knack for capturing those sorts of little details that tell a larger story, for crafting richly cinematic scenes that transform seemingly mundane moments into metaphors for life itself. The driving lead single “Turn Off The TV,” for instance, spins a free cable hookup into a celebration of the visceral pleasures of living in the present, while the larger-than-life “Diamonds On Neptune” turns an astronomical phenomenon into a meditation on what really matters, and the waltzing “Belmont Hotel” finds emotional symbolism in the restoration of a Dallas landmark. 

“‘Belmont Hotel’ is a microcosm of the album, and of our band,” says Miller. “When we first started out, the Belmont was in absolute ruins, and we even did a photoshoot in the empty parking lot. Now, though, it’s more beautiful than it was in its glory days, and that got me thinking about the way we approach our relationships. Whether it’s a friendship or a marriage or a band, it’s inevitable that you’re going to go through ups and downs, but if you’re willing to put in the work and stick out the hard times, you can wind up with something that’s better than it ever was before.” 

While Miller collaborated with writers like Butch Walker and Nicole Atkins on Graveyard Whistling, he penned everything on Twelfth himself (outside of the Spaghetti Western-esque “Happy Hour” and hypnotic album closer “Why Don’t We Ever Say We’re Sorry,” which were both written and sung by Hammond). It’s a return to form he credits in part to his increasing comfort with sobriety, a comfort that finds him effortlessly running the gamut from playful romance (the dreamy “I Like You Better”) and brash bravado (the blistering “Confessional Boxing”) to supernatural fantasy (the Kinks-ian “This House Got Ghosts”) and old-school twang (the rollicking “Bottle Rocket Baby”). It’s perhaps the jaunty “Absence (What We’ve Got)” that captures this particular moment in Old 97’s history best, though, as Miller marvels at the way things change while staying the same. “The wine turns into whiskey / And the whiskey turns to tears / It’s been this way for years,” he sings, later summing the whole magic act up with a deceptively simple confession: “This is what I do.”

 Old 97’s may be human, but somehow what they’ve got never breaks down.

PUBLIC ENEMY RETURN WITH EXPLOSIVE NEW SINGLE “STATE OF THE UNION (STFU)”

Available For Free Download via PublicEnemy.com

Public Enemy is back with a new song and video, “State of the Union (STFU),” a fiery return to the frontlines as they take on Donald Trump and his fascist regime. PE is giving away the track to fans for free at www.publicenemy.com starting today. It is also available to stream on all major DSPs worldwide.  “State of the Union (STFU)” was produced by DJ Premier

An unflinching statement about the destruction the current administration has unleashed on the country and its people, “State of the Union (STFU)” speaks truth to power while urging people to fight against racism, injustice and oppression with their vote.   

It’s the latest in a string of powerful messages about Trump from PE frontman Chuck D, who has addressed Trump’s policies and rhetoric for the past several years through his work with Prophets of Rage and as a solo artist. “Our collective voices keep getting louder. The rest of the planet is on our side. But it’s not enough to talk about change. You have to show up and demand change,” says Chuck D. “Folks gotta vote like their lives depend on it, ‘cause it does.” “Public Enemy tells it like it is,” added Flavor Flav. “It’s time for him to GO.”
Public Enemy photo by Eitan Miskevich

WATCH “STATE OF THE UNION (STFU)” OFFICIAL VIDEO

FOLLOW PUBLIC ENEMY:Facebook * Twitter * Instagram
FOLLOW CHUCK D:Facebook * Twitter * Instagram

SIXTHMAN POSTPONES REMAINING 2020 FESTIVALS ALL TO RETURN FOR A STRONG 2021 ON SAND & SEA

2021 Dates Already Set For The Following Festivals:

All The Best Fest moves to May 19 -23, 2021 returning to the Breathless + Now Onyx Resorts in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic celebrating the life and music of John PrineJoe Bonamassa’s Keeping the Blues Alive at Sea Mediterranean IInow sailing the Greek Isles August 17 – 22, 2021 on board Norwegian Pearl The Broadway Cruise moves to November 13 – 17, 2021 sailing from New York City to Bermuda on board Norwegian Gem

KNOTFEST at Sea Rescheduled for August 2021 from Athens, Greece; Kesha’s Weird & Wonderful Rainbow Ride 2The Melissa Etheridge Cruise IVCoheed and Cambria’s S.S. Neverender and The KISS Kruise X are Rescheduled mid-October to mid-November 2021 from Miami with Dates To Be Announced 

Sixthman’s ‘Looking After Our Communities’ Program incorporates enhanced health and safety measures, new policies for event refunds, transfers and credits and additional guest benefits on all festivals. 
In light of recent global events due to the unprecedented Covid-19 situation, Sixthman, the global leader in destination vacation festivals, regretfully announces the postponement of all remaining 2020 festivals. Select festivals have already been rescheduled for 2021 including Joe Bonamassa’s Keeping The Blues Alive at Sea Mediterranean II (sailing August 17-22, 2021 from Athens, Greece on board Norwegian Pearl), The Broadway Cruise (sailing November 13-17,2021 from New York City to Bermuda) and the resort based All The Best Fest (May 19-23, 2021 returning to the Breathless + Now Onyx Resorts in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic). Knotfest at Sea (sailing August 2021 from Athens, Greece on board Norwegian Pearl) hosted by Slipknot will also be returning with exact dates and ports to be announced. Kesha’s Weird & Wonderful Rainbow Ride 2The Melissa Etheridge Cruise IVCoheed and Cambria’s S.S. Neverender, and The KISS Kruise X will also move to October / November 2021 with new dates to be announced soon. Invitations have been extended for all currently booked 2020 artists to return in 2021.

Each event’s full lineups, which will feature some returning and new acts for next year, to be announced when complete.

More information on all festivals can be found at www.sixthman.net
Sixthman CEO Anthony Diaz has released the following update:
Going above & beyond to create moments and memories that last a lifetime is why we do what we do. We see something incredibly special happen when communities come together to celebrate shared passions. Serving them on vacation is what has driven us for the past 20 years and 145 immersive events on land, sand and sea. We recognize we’re in the midst of uncertain times right now—times that call for extra flexibility, special value and an absolute assurance that the health and safety of our guests is being closely looked after.  

With that, we hope our new ‘Looking After Our Communities’ assurance program gives peace of mind to our guests by offering the following:
1.     New Safety Protocols:

a.     Sixthman is working closely with Norwegian Cruise Line and our partners to support the enhanced health and safety measures being put in place in preparation for when the time is right for sailings to resume. 

2.     Flexibility in Refunds and Transfers:

a.     Transfer Policy__________i.     For all guests currently booked on a 2020 festival who want to keep their festival reservation, they can transfer their reservation to the rescheduled 2021 dates.

 b.     New Cruise Credit Policy __________i.     If a festival’s new 2021 dates do not work for a guest currently booked on a 2020 festival, they have the option to cancel their reservation and receive a credit for a future Sixthman festival OR Norwegian Cruise Line sailing. 

c.      New Refund Policy__________i.     If a festival’s new 2021 dates do not work for a guest currently booked on a 2020 festival, they now have the option to receive a full refund of all monies paid if they cancel their reservation through August 31st, 2020. 

d.     Looking After Our Communities__________i.     Giving all guests currently booked or looking to book on a 2021 event the option to change or cancel festival reservations for any of Sixthman’s 2021 events. Guests who decide to alter their reservation through August 31st, 2020 will receive an event credit that can be used on any Sixthman festival (land or sea) or any Norwegian Cruise Line sailing through 12/31/2022

3.     Onboard Incentives and Benefits: 

a.     Free Beverage Package__________i.     As a thank you to our communities—all current and future guests who book through August 31st, 2020 on any 2021 cruise will have the option to select a Free Beverage Package –with only the associated gratuities to be charged.  

b.     Additional Event Specific Experiences__________i.     To further give back to our trusted communities, we are actively working with our partners and hosts to craft unique experiences for our guests on each of our 2021 sailing. These event specific experiences will be announced on a rolling basis throughout the next few months. 

While our guests, artist partners and the Sixthman team are all sad the time is not right this year to come together as a community, we know how special it will be to return together on vacation next year and are already counting down the days.    -Anthony Diaz | CEO Sixthman

All The Best Festival To celebrate the remarkable legacy of stories and songs left behind with the recent passing of John Prine, Sixthman and Oh Boy Records are honored to host All The Best festival. 

All The Best (originally scheduled for November 16-20, 2020) is a four-day celebration of amazing music and community taking place at the world class Breathless + Now Onyx Resorts in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic now scheduled for May 19 – 23, 2021. 

Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit, John Hiatt, Steve Earle, I’m With Her, Margo Price, Todd Snider, Iris DeMent, Paul Thorn, The Jerry Douglas Band, The War and Treaty, Watkins Family Hour, Ian Noe, Ana Egge, Jeremy Ivey, Tré Burt, and John Prine’s backing band with more to be announced will be joining fans in the Dominican to celebrate John Prine’s lasting impact on the music industry

Fans who are interested can book their spot for the 2021 festival now. – allthebestfest.com 

Keeping The Blues Alive at Sea Mediterranean IIGuitar legend Joe Bonamassa, in conjunction with partners Keeping The Blues Alive Foundation and Sixthman have made the decision to postpone the sailing of Keeping The Blues Alive at Sea Mediterranean II. The second voyage is now scheduled to sail aboard the Norwegian Pearl out of Athens, Greece traveling to Mykonos, Greece and Kusadasi, Turkey on August 17-22, 2021. Many talented artists will be joining Joe Bonamassa onboard the blues rock festival including 

Ian Anderson presents Jethro Tull, Walter Trout, Marc Broussard, Ana Popovic, King King, Jimmy Vivino, Terry Reid, The James Hunter Six, The Suffers, Kris Barras Band, Selwyn Birchwood, The Cold Stares, Daddy Long Legs, Jade MacRae, Elles Bailey, Ben Levin, Lakota John and Toby LeeFans who are interested can book their spot on the 2021 sailing now. – bluesaliveatseaeurope.com

About Sixthman- Since 2001, Sixthman has set the stage for moments that make life rock, serving over 300,000 guests’ unforgettable vacations on sand and at sea with their favorite artists, athletes, actors, comedians and brands. These carefully curated, intimate events bring non-stop performances, artist collaborations, in depth panels and Q&As, fan-artist activities, museums and overall truly immersive experiences that celebrate community and change expectations of what a vacation could be. Sixthman’s domestic home port of Miami takes guests to dream destinations in the Virgin Islands, Jamaica, Belize, Honduras, Mexico, and The Bahamas. In 2019, Sixthman expanded their festivals at sea to Europe, sailing from Barcelona, Spain to exotic Mediterranean ports. 2021 brings sailings through the Greek Isles. In addition to festivals at sea, in 2019 Sixthman began bringing their innovative vacation concept to world class, all-inclusive resorts in the Dominican Republic. Sixthman also powers the events of other producers and brands through their experience and suite of in-house services. For more information, visit sixthman.net and connect with us @SXMLiveLoud. LIVE LOUD.

VOLBEAT ANNOUNCE THE RETURN OF THEIR ‘OFFICIAL BOOTLEG’ SERIES WITH A LIVE VIDEO OF “LEVIATHAN”

7th STUDIO ALBUM, REWIND, REPLAY, REBOUND, OUT NOW VIA REPUBLIC RECORDS

Photo Credit: Ross Halfin

Multi-platinum Danish rock band Volbeat revive their long-running “Official Bootleg” series with the release of a live video of “Leviathan,” the latest single off their 7th studio album, Rewind, Replay, Rebound (Republic Records). The live video of the song, recorded last year at the Barclaycard Arena in Hamburg, Germany, was edited and directed by Brittany Bowman and Shelby Cude with audio mixed by Jacob Hansen. Watch the live video of “Leviathan” here, and previous “Official Bootlegs” here.

VOLBEAT emerged from Copenhagen in 2001. Since then, they’ve tirelessly clawed their way to hard rock’s upper echelon with endless touring, including opening for Metallica, Motorhead and Slipknot, and a string of seven beloved full-length albums. Their 2010 album Beyond Hell/Above Heaven, which features hit singles “A Warrior’s Call” and “Heaven Nor Hell,” has received RIAA Gold Certification. 2013’s Outlaw Gentlemen & Shady Ladies, which includes the Grammy nominated “Room 24,” bowed at #9 on the Billboard Top 200 upon release, marking the highest U.S. chart entry for a Danish act since 1997. A distinction that Volbeat topped in 2016 when Seal The Deal & Let’s Boogie debuted at #4. The band also released Let’s Boogie! Live At Telia Parken, a concert film and album documenting their landmark 2017 Copenhagen show in front of 48,250 fans, the largest show a Danish band has ever performed in Denmark.

GWAR Return To UK & Europe For November-December Tour!

People of Europe!!!  It has been over 10 years since your Alien Overlords GWAR feasted on the souls of the Old World. At last, the wait is finally over. The time has come for GWAR’s insatiable thirst for blood to be quenched. Yes, you heard right!  Your Lords and Masters GWAR will make their triumphant return across the pond late this November into December on their “Use Your Collusion” 2019 European & UK Tour.  The attack begins in Bochum, Germany on November 22nd. They end their invasion by storming Zurich, Switzerland on December 14th, and by that time the continent will be little more than a smoldering pile of poo. Main support for the whole tour are metal legends VOIVOD! All tickets will be available for purchase at http://www.gwar.net. Pre-sales begin today and the general public on-sale is set for August 16th at 9:00am GMT.  

GWAR has waited long enough to terrorize youth across the pond. What better way to spend a winter than pillaging and copulating across Europe, says guitarist Pustulus Maximus

Lead singer The Berserker Blóthar chimes in, “All of Europe will bow to the majesty of GWAR! We will destroy your cities and consume all of your drugs. We will bring welcome death to the most depressed, emotionally and sexually repressed people on Earth. I cannot wait to wreak havoc on your infinitely inferior plumbing.” 

“In Europe they call me doner kabob because that’s all I eat there. I Love European culture. Can’t wait for the tour, adds drummer JiZMak da Gusha

Footage of the band announcing the tour has leaked from their fortress in Antarctica. Watch the video HERE.https://youtu.be/_LkUoHVBU84

GWAR is:

The Berserker Blóthar: Lead Howler

Beefcake the Mighty: Bass Guitar, Vocals

Pustulus Maximus: Lead Guitar, Vocals

BälSäc the Jaws ‘o Death: Rhythm Guitar, Vocals 

JiZMak da Gusha: Drums

Bonesnapper: Bodyguard, Crappy Vocals

Sawborg Destructo: Annoying Nemesis, Annoying Vocals 

GWAR “Use Your Collusion” Europe & UK 2019 Tour:

Nov. 22: Bochum, DE @ Matrix*

Nov. 23: Vaureal, FR @ Le Forum*

Nov. 24: Mannheim, DE @ MS Connexion*

Nov. 26: Cologne, DE @ Live Music Hall

Nov. 27: Kortrijk, BE @ De Kruen

Nov. 28: Tilburg, NL @ 013 KZ

Nov. 30: Manchester, UK @ Club Academy

Dec.1: Glasgow, UK @ The Garage

Dec. 2: Wolverhampton, UK @ Steel Mill

Dec. 3: Newcastle, UK @ Riverside

Dec. 4: London, UK @ Islington Academy

Dec. 5: Antwerp, BE @ Zappa

Dec. 6: Bremen, DE @ Schlachthof

Dec. 7: Copenhagen, DK @ Pumpehuset

Dec. 8: Berlin, DE @ Festsaal Kreuzberg

Dec. 9: Prague, CZ @ Meet Factory

Dec. 10: Ziln, CZ @ Masters of Rock Cafe 

Dec. 11: Graz, AT @ Explosvi

Dec. 12: Ljubljana, SI @ Kino Siska

Dec. 13: Pinarella di Cervia, ITL @ Rock Planet

Dec. 14: Zurich, @ Komplex 

VOIVOD Main Support All Dates*- Downcast Collision (from…The Netherlands) opens Nov. 22-24   – Childrain (from…Basque Country) opens Nov. 26- Dec.14  

For More Info Visit:http://www.GWAR.net

GAME OF THRONES® LIVE CONCERT EXPERIENCE TO RETURN FOR FALL 2019 NORTH AMERICAN AMPHITHEATER TOUR

Experience the Excitement, Terror, Heartbreak, and History of Emmy® Award-Winning Game of Thrones Composer Ramin Djawadi’s Music In A Stunning Outdoor Concert Experience

The 20-City Tour Will Travel Throughout North America, Including Dates In Chicago, Boston, Philadelphia, New York City, Los Angeles and many more

Tickets On Sale Monday, May 13, 2019 At 10AM Local Time

The critically acclaimed Game of Thrones Live Concert Experience will return this fall for a 20-city amphitheater tour, bringing the music of Emmy® Award-winning Game of Thrones composer Ramin Djawadi to stunning new life at outdoor theatres across North America. As we say goodbye to one of the biggest shows and scores in television history, relive the greatest musical pieces and footage from all eight seasons in an immersive outdoor concert experience. Tickets for the tour will be available HERE starting Monday, May 13, 2019, at 10:00am local time and a full list of dates can be found below.

Featuring special appearances by Ramin himself at Northwell Health at Jones Beach Theater in New York City, FivePoint Amphitheatre in Irvine, CA and Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles, CA, the tour will stop at notable outdoor venues across North America. Having first conceptualized the tour several years ago, Ramin will be reworking and redeveloping the musical and visual elements of the concert to create a brand new live experience that encompasses fan-favorite pieces from the entirety of Game of Thrones. The tour will include new musical arrangements from the series’ 8th and final season such as the “The Night King” theme, Ramin’s epic 9-minute composition that went viral immediately after debuting on the show. Within days, the track garnered millions of streams across the internet, reached the top 4 most downloaded songs on iTunes and the top 18 most watched videos on YouTube, and dropped the jaws of audiences and critics alike:

“When Game of Thrones Plays Sad Piano Music, It’s Time to Freak Out.” – Vulture

“In a series known for truly cinematic music, this was still a series highlight…Djawadi’s finest on the show.” – Nerdist

“[Ramin] really outdid himself here with the soaring, searching score that gave the episode its own unique flavor while also selling its most emotional beats. It’s a true symphony at times.” – Indiewire

The inaugural run of the Game of Thrones Live Concert Experience Featuring Ramin Djawadi kicked off in North America in February of 2017 and was praised by audiences and critics alike as a must-see spectacle for fans of the television series. Following the success of the tour, Ramin embarked on a European run during the spring of 2018 before returning back for a second North American tour in the fall of 2018. To date, the show has amassed a total of 75 arena concerts across the globe. The Guardian described the show as “Westeros brought to dazzling life.” Mashable called it “an epic musical journey,” while the New York Times praised it as “a symphonic spectacular.”

The tour, produced and promoted exclusively by Live Nation in partnership with HBO Licensing & Retail, will continue to use innovative music tour production and video technology that will recreate the various realms found throughout Westeros and Essos as well as showcase footage from the series in addition to new imagery created exclusively for the concert.

Ramin has won one Emmy Award® and been nominated for six Emmy® Awards and two GRAMMY® Awards. Versatility has defined his career, from celebrated television scores for Game of ThronesWestworldJack Ryan, and Prison Break to feature films such as A Wrinkle in TimeMountain Between UsSlender ManThe Great WallPacific RimIron Man and Clash of the Titans. Ramin has even composed scores for blockbuster video games including Medal of HonorGears of War 4 and the upcoming Gears of War 5.

GAME OF THRONES® LIVE CONCERT EXPERIENCE 2019 NORTH AMERICAN DATES

9/5 – Syracuse, NY – St. Joseph’s Health Amphitheater at Lakeview

9/6 – Toronto, ON – Budweiser Stage

9/8 – Chicago, IL – Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre

9/10 – Boston, MA – Xfinity Center

9/11 – Hartford, CT – XFINITY Theatre

9/12 – Philadelphia, PA – The Mann

9/14 – New York, NY – Northwell Health at Jones Beach Theater

9/15 – Washington, DC – Jiffy Lube Live

9/17 – Virginia Beach, VA – Veterans United Home Loans Amphitheater

9/18 – Raleigh, NC – Coastal Credit Union Music Park

9/20 – Jacksonville, FL – Daily’s Place

9/21 – West Palm Beach, FL – Coral Sky Amphitheatre

9/22 – Tampa, FL – MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre

9/25 – Rogers, AR – Walmart AMP

9/26 – Dallas, TX – The Pavilion at Toyota Music Factory

9/27 – Houston, TX – Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion

10/1 – Phoenix, AZ – Comerica Theatre

10/3 – San Francisco, CA – Shoreline Amphitheatre

10/4 – Irvine, CA – FivePoint Amphitheatre

10/5 – Los Angeles, CA – Hollywood Bowl

 

Related Content

Blu-ray Review “xXx: Return of Xander Cage”

Starring: Vin Diesel, Nina Dobrev, Samuel L. Jackson, Donnie Yen, Ruby Rose, Toni Collette
Director: D.J. Caruso
Number of discs: 2
Rated: PG-13
Studio: Paramount
Release Date: May 16, 2017
Run Time: 96 minutes

Film: 2.5 out of 5 stars
Blu-ray: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Extras: 3 out of 5 stars

Vin Diesel is a man that does not give up. The film “Pitch Black” was a good film that was turned into a mediocre franchise. “The Fast and Furious” was a film that was great and turned into a global phenomenon that normally wouldn’t have had more than one film. Same goes with “xXx”. The book should have been closed after the second film, yet here we are with another installment riding on the popularity of Vin Diesel. The film is honestly crap, no joke, there are some cool action scenes but literally this doesn’t have the power of Diesel’s “Fast and Furious” franchise, which was probably the hopes here. Worth watching for a laugh but otherwise nothing smart of that this third sequel at all and I have a feeling unfortunately we haven’t seen the end of Xander Cage.

Official Premise: The third explosive chapter of the blockbuster franchise that redefined the spy thriller finds extreme athlete turned government operative Xander Cage (Vin Diesel) coming out of self-imposed exile and on a collision course with deadly alpha warrior Xiang and his team in a race to recover a sinister and seemingly unstoppable weapon known as Pandora’s Box. Recruiting an all-new group of thrill-seeking cohorts, Xander finds himself enmeshed in a deadly conspiracy that points to collusion at the highest levels of world governments.

Paramount is releasing this film as a combo pack with Blu-ray + DVD + Digital HD copy included. The 1080p transfer is near flawless. This film is definitely beautiful to look at and shows off its beautiful shooting locations quite well. The audio on this Blu-ray is also near perfect with both a Dolby Atmos and Dolby TrueHD 7.1 tracks included. These tracks are amazing with the action in the film and really shake the walls, no questions.

The special features are decent and worth checking out if you loved the film but otherwise not much here other than four featurettes and a gag reel. The first featurette focuses on bringing back the franchise to live in “Third Time’s the Charm: Xander Returns”. Since this film is basically made for an international market, “Rebels, Tyrants & Ghosts: The Cast” looks at the new cast brought in to sweeten the deal. “Opening Pandora’s Box: On Location” showcases the snazzy locations where this film was shot. Lastly, the highlight of the film is it stunts and the last featurette focuses on those in “I Live for This Sh#t!: Stunts”.

 

Related Content

Concert Review: “Weird Al Yankovic’s “Return of Mandatory Fun Tour”

Weird Al Yankovic
Date: August 8th, 2016
Venue: Starlight Theater

Our Score: 5 out of 5 Stars

If there was ever music icon that demanded your undivided attention at a concert, it is Weird Al Yankovic. His performance is a full-sensory experience. Obviously it’s a visual and audible treat for those who show up in tin foil hats, polka pants, Amish attire, or whatever reference they can make to the musician’s 40-year career. But Weird Al incorporates more theatrics into one show than most bands do throughout an entire tour.

The concert begins via jumbotron, displaying crusty black and white propaganda video repeating the phrase, “Mandatory Fun”, the title of Weird Al’s last album. We then cut to Weird Al’s his tour bus where he appears singing “Tacky”. Shoving show extras out of his way and teasing the audience with what’s to come as he enters the Starlight seating area, he comically drifts to the stage through elaborate cheesy dance moves. It doesn’t take the comedy king of polka to bust out the accordion or the new songs that helped him land at #1 on the Billboard Top 40 last year.

Because each song parodies a song or specific style of a band, this is a concert requiring a costume change in between nearly every song during the two-hour show. In between songs like “Fat”, “White and Nerdy” and “Foil” are pieced together video clips highlighting the pop-culture relevance of Weird Al. Everything from his appearance in the “Naked Gun” movies to his vocal talents being utilized on contemporary cartoon favorites like “My Little Pony”. For fans old and new, the clips are a relentless sampling of his lengthy relevance and influence in society.

The seemingly one man show is joined on stage by his bandmates, who match his intensity, comedic timing and quirks. The madcap nature of Weird Al is matched by everyone, even the stage hands who have to awkwardly stand and hold a harmonica during “Ode to a Superhero” or the intentionally unenthusiastic cheerleaders during “Smells Like Nirvana”. The dedication to the surreal nature of it all reaches its peak during the encore. During “Yoda” the band stops playing their instruments and becomes a choir of cartoon sound effects and madcap a capella.

Every song played that night was a unique and unforgettable memory for fans, even the moments of parody medley. Weird Al spends a solid 15 minutes cramming in 10 shorted songs to better cram in his lengthy catalogue of memorable parodies to please every concertgoer. There are even a handful of songs that can be viewed as interactive, on the audiences end and Weird Al’s end. My review could have easily been a recap of every wonderfully joyous moment experienced in each song.

Having seen him live 15 years ago, it’s impressive to see the same energy, if not more. There are signs of age in that jester smile and silly grimace that he flashes, possibly worrying fans that he may be nearing the end of his rich career. I highly doubt the man who truly loves entertaining the nerdy masses is going to retire anytime soon. But on the off-chance he’s getting closer to hanging up the accordion, do yourself a favor and see him now, and often.

Set List:
Tacky
2.) Lame Claim to Fame
3.) Now That’s What I Call Polka!
4.) Perform This Way
5.) Dare to Be Stupid
6.) Fat
7.) First World Problems
8.) Foil
9.) Smells Like Nirvana
10.) Party in the CIA/ It’s All About the Pentiums/ Handy/ Bedrock Anthem/ Another One Rides the Bus/ Ode to a Superhero/ Gump/ Inactive/ eBay
11.) Canadian Idiot
12.) Wanna B Ur Lovr
13.) Eat It/ I Lost on Jeopardy/ I Love Rocky Road/ Like a Surgeon (Acoustic)
14.) White and Nerdy
15.) Word Crimes
16.) Amish Paradise
ENCORE
17.) We All Have Cellphones
18.) The Saga Begins
19.) Yoda

Ballers set to return this summer

Dwayne Johnson is back as the ex-NFL star striving to find success off the pitch as a financial manager for the biggest “Ballers” in Miami. The hit HBO show will return this summer and promises to be bigger and better than before. The first season of the show received widespread critical acclaim, with a rather impressive 80% score on Rotten Tomatoes, and the premier for the new season is due to be screened on July 17.

To those unfamiliar with the show, you don’t need to be a football fan to be able to get into it. In fact, it is only loosely based on the actual sport, and instead has greater focus on the lives and conflicts surrounding players, agents and managers. As it is set in Miami, the Miami Dolphins are a primary focus in the series. The Dolphins are well known globally, and have appeared on screen before in “Ace Ventura: Pet Detective”. However, their fortunes on the field have not been so impressive of late and, at the time of writing, in the Bet365 NFL odds they are 50/1 to win the Super Bowl.

The finale of season one of “Ballers” brought closure to a number of conflicts, but also planted seeds for new potential storylines. Wide receiver Ricky Jerret (John David Washington) called out his absentee father in a news broadcast. However, his father insisted he had done the right thing in deserting him at an early age, as it stirred up anger and emotions in his son that ended up making him a ferocious force on the field of play.

We also witnessed the return of Vernon’s cousin, Reggie (London Brown). As a massive troublemaker, Reggie is one of the most hated characters on the show. Some Reddit users on a “I Hate Reggie” thread have even suggested that Johnson should use his famous wrestling move, “the Rock Bottom”, on Reggie in the show. In the season finale though, Reggie was seemingly able to put his ego aside when he admitted that Johnson’s character, Spencer Strasmore, knew best. However, we will have to wait and see if this is just part of a play.

The tagline for the new season is “You’re no one until you have enemies”, with Andy Garcia playing the enemy in question. Bringing in a powerhouse actor that has taken on major roles in “The Untouchables” and “The Godfather Part III”, among other massive hits, could boost ratings significantly. Garcia’s character is the biggest powerhouse in the game, and Strasmore is warned not to cross him. However, it seems unlikely that Strasmore will heed this advice, and it could come down to an epic showdown between the two.  Judging from the trailer for the new season (see above), there should be plenty of humor, action and fast cars. All of this, along with another set of compelling storylines, means the second installment should be as well-received as the debut season.

Director Jon Cassar Talks About His New Film, “Forsaken” and the Possible Return of “24”

You may know the name Jon Cassar from his Emmy Award winning association with the popular television series, “24.” But when he’s not putting Jack Bauer through his paces, he’s taking the reigns of one of the best Westerns of the past decade.

“Forsaken,” which Mr. Cassar directed, boasts a strong script and an even stronger cast, including Donald and Keifer Sutherland, who star as father and son. Mr. Cassar took some time out to talk to me about “Forsaken,” the return of the Kennedys and what may be next for “24.”

MIKE SMITH: What attracted you to “Forsaken?”
JON CASSAR: Actually I was there when the project was born. A few of us were sitting around on the set of “24” talking, waiting to set up a shot when we started asking each other, ‘what would be a great thing to do once “24” ends?’ Eventually we all decided, ‘let’s do a Western together.’ So that’s really where it started. Once we decided on that Keifer came along. He wanted to do a film with his father so everything just worked. I’m happy to say that I was there at the inception. We got a brilliant writer (Brad Mirman) who not only wrote us a classic Western but also a touching father/son story. So by then I had Keifer, I had a great script and THEN I get Donald Sutherland? There’s no way I wasn’t going to be involved!

MS: Any trepidations about taking on a Western? They seem to be so hit and miss these days.
JC: Yeah, of course. I mean you do worry about it. I mean at one point it was the most popular film genre’. The most popular television genre’ also. I mean, it’s amazing how many popular television shows were Westerns. But it did, of course, begin to fall out of favor, all though it is making a little bitty comeback over the past few months. But you’re right. But I knew I had a great Western story. And I knew I had a great father/son story that people could connect with. I knew that relationship was really the heart of it and if we did it right I knew if would connect. And it’s fun doing something that isn’t a true CGI film. It’s fun doing something where the effects are more simple.

MS: What was it like as an observer to watch Keifer and his father work together?
JC: It was great. I’m very fortunate to have had a front row seat to watch Keifer and Donald working together. From the first time it was fantastic. They are both veteran actors and, in my opinion, two of the best actors of our time. To watch them work together was a pleasure. As it was watching all of the actors. Demi Moore. Brian Cox. Michael Wincott. They are all so experienced. I was very lucky to have a front row seat and watch them work.

MS: Keifer. Michael Wincott. Greg Ellis. You used quite a few of your “24” company in the film. Was that because you already had a good familiarity with them and their work?
JC: Absolutely. First of all, you have to know that all of the actors in the film were basically my friends. I didn’t have a studio dictating who was going to play what part. We actually got to pick who we liked. A lot of them were Keifer’s friends. And of course, by having done “24,” they knew me so it made the connection easier for sure.

MS; The recent return of “24” was very successful. I’ve heard rumors that Fox is considering re-booting the show. Is that something you plan to be involved with?
JC: Nothing is official yet. I am involved and we have talked. I can say that if it goes forward I won’t be involved in the pilot but I do hope to be involved in the series. However, at this point I’m not.

MS: What else are you working on now?
JC: A few years ago I did a mini-series called “The Kennedys,” which was an eight-part mini-series that starred Greg Kinnear as JFK and Katie Holmes as Jackie. We’re doing a sequel to that, called “After Camelot,” based on a book. It will deal with what happened to the Kennedys after John and Robert died. It’s mostly the Jackie story and it follow her during her marriage to Onassis as well as John Jr. and Ted Kennedy. It will encompass all of that history. We shoot that soon in Toronto. It will run on the Reelz Channel. It’s actually a fun project for me to do because we’re re-creating all of the history that we all grew up with.

E.G. Daily talks about NBC’s “The Voice” and the return of “The Powerpuff Girls”

You might not known E.G. Daily’s face but you definitely know her voice since she has voiced numerous animated characters including Tommy Pickles in “Rugrats”. She is also known for her role of Dottie in “Pee Wee’s Big Adventure”. Besides acting, she is also a singer and was a contestant on season five of NBC’s “The Voice” with Team Blake. Media Mikes had a chance to chat with E.G. about her experience on the show and the return of “The Powerpuff Girls”.

Mike Gencarelli: Tell us about how you decided to audition for NBC’s “The Voice”?
E.G. Daily: I’ve been hosting an online music show called “Balcony TV”, which I got to sing on. After I did a few of them, the same person that contacted me for that told me that she got me an audition for “The Voice”. I didn’t think that they would have me on that show due to my career to date. I went in just for fun and prepared three cover songs. The next thing I know I got a call back. There is a 50,000 people process for this show. So over months and months I kept being called back for the next audition and the next audition and finally I got asked to do the blind audition, which was down to the final 150 people. It was a very incredible process. I don’t know how it happened. I was just doing what I loved and the next thing I know I was singing “Breath” in front of America.

MG: Tell us about the highlight for you on the show?
EGD: I have to say it was singing “Breathe” on my blind audition since that was such a magical moment for me. I went months and months of not knowing anything and putting myself on the line and to actually get a chance to be on a team with these talent artists was amazing. You can see it on my face as well if you watch that performance (see below for video), I was like “Wow, this is crazy”.

MG: How do you feel about the finale results for season 5?
EGD: Tessanne (Chin) was actually my roommate, so I have so much love for her. All of them, I was close with Jacquie and her mother as well. I think Tessanne is such a solid human being, has such a beautiful soul and is such a great singer. I am very happy and proud for her.

MG: Tell us about what we can expect for return of “The Powerpuff Girls” in 2014?
EGD: I can’t say much about it because that it is a special episode and premieres on January 20th. I have done a couple of special things for “The Powerpuff Girls”, but I can’t say what they are besides that it is going to be really cool. The fans are going nutty about it and I think it is going to be really great. This could be the launch of a lot of things for “The Powerpuff Girls” since fans are very hungry for more of that show.

MG: What else do you have planned for 2014?
EGD: I have been in the studio a lot recently. If you look up E.G. Daily on iTunes, there is tons of great music available right now. There is a record I put out there a while back called “Tearing Down the Walls” that is so beautiful. There is a recent video out there called “Somebody’s Loving You”, which is great. I am recording some new songs right now that I will be putting up soon as well. I have a trip planned to the East Coast in the beginning of next year for a personal appearance. I also have a ton of animation like “Julius Jr.” which is coming to Nick Jr. next year. I am have super busy and it has been awesome. So a lot of great things coming up and be sure to check egdaily.com for all upcoming news.

Blu-ray Review “Peter Pan: Return to Never Land”

Actors: Blayne Weaver, Corey Burton, Kath Soucie, Harriet Owen, Jeff Bennett
Directors: Robin Rudd
Rated: G (General Audience)
Studio: Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment
Release Date: August 20, 2013
Run Time: 72 minutes

Film: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Extras: 2 out of 5 stars

Like the recently released “Planes”, “Return to Never Land” is a direct-to-video movie that was released in theaters back in 2002. I remember seeing it in theaters back then and actually quite enjoying it. The film is a direct sequel to 1953’s “Peter Pan” arriving nearly 50 years later. “Peter Pan” is easily one of my favorite Disney films ever, so this film has big shoes to fill. “Return to Never Land” does deliver though. It is not perfect but it is fun, packed some good jokes and has that same charm that we all loved from “Peter Pan”. It just makes you feel like a kid again while watching it. With the success of Disney Junior’s “Jake and the Never Land Pirates”, this would be great for today’s kids that weren’t born yet when this came out.

Official Premise: Let your imagination soar as your favorite characters from Peter Pan, Disney’s classic adventure, return to Never Land. Now, for the first time through the magic of Blu-ray, experience all the thrilling action with digitally restored picture and spine-tingling high-definition sound. Wendy’s very practical and no-nonsense daughter, Jane, begins the adventure of a lifetime when the infamous Captain Hook whisks her away to the enchanted island of Never Land. It’s up to Peter Pan, Tinker Bell and the Lost Boys to help Jane believe in faith, trust and pixie dust. With the first-ever Lost Girl at his side, will Peter Pan finally defeat Hook and his swashbuckling band of pirates? Share the power of believing with your family in Return To Never Land—now more spectacular than ever on Disney Blu-ray.

Disney is releasing this film as a Special Edition combo pack with a Blu-ray + DVD + Digital Copy. I love that Disney has switched from just iTunes digital copies to streaming digital copies from Vudu and Amazon.  The 1080p transfer looks really amazing with this film.  Even though it has that certain direct-to-video look, Disney did a great job of giving this film a nice polish job. Same goes for the DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track.  It works well the dialogue, the soaring through the sky, as well the action including the sword fights and all other aspects of swashbuckling.

Unlike the film, the special features are not very impressive. There are give deleted scenes included presented in various stages of the production but mostly in storyboards. Thought it might not excite many people, I watch Disney Junior quite a bit with our 15 month old daughter and she goes absolutely crazy for the “Pixie Previews” with the crew from the Tinker Bell movies.  So even though it is not directly related to “Return to Neverland”, I am pretty excited to see the five animated shorts including “Hide and Tink,” “Dust Up,” “Shooting Stars,” “Volley Bug” and “Just Desserts”. Lastly, there is a music video for the song “I’ll Try” performed by Jonatha Brooke and some trailers included.

Blu-ray Review “Atlantis: The Lost Empire / Atlantis: Milo’s Return”

Actors: Michael J. Fox, James Garner, Cree Summer, Don Novello, Claudia Christian
Directors: Gary Trousdale, Kirk Wise
Number of discs: 3
Rated: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
Studio: Walt Disney Home Video
Release Date: June 11, 2013
Run Time: 176 minutes

“Atlantis: The Lost Empire”: 3 out of 5 stars
“Atlantis: Milo’s Return”: 1.5 out of 5 stars
Extras: 3 out of 5 stars

Last year Disney started flooding the market with their less than par animated films on Blu-ray in these 2 Movie Collection sets. A few of them that we got “The Rescuers”/”The Rescuers Down Under”, “Pocahontas”/Pocahontas II: Journey to a New World” and “Mulan”/”Mulan II”. This month we are getting a few more to add to our collections including “The Emperor’s New Groove”/”Kronk’s New Groove”, “Lilo & Stitch”/”Lilo & Stitch 2: Stitch Has a Glitch” and this release “Atlantis: The Lost Empire”/”Atlantis 2: Milo’s Return”. “Atlantis: The Lost Empire” is not the best thing that Disney has every made, it is watchable and put not one of my favorites.  The sequel is another story, it was original made as a TV show “Team Atlantis” but failed and ended up being pieced together as a film. It is quite the failure in terms of Disney. I would say this release is for the hardcore Disney fans only.

Official Premise: Set a course for adventure as Milo Thatch and his fearless crew dive into the mysteries of the sea.  The group’s underwater expedition brings them face-to-face with gigantic sea monsters, spectacular spirits and the mythical land of Atlantis while they discover the power of friendship and teamwork.  Loaded with thrills and stunning visual effects, this sensational 2-Movie Collection takes audiences on an unforgettable voyage they’ll want to experience over and over again!

The 2-Movie Collection release of “Atlantis: The Lost Empire / Atlantis: Milo’s Return” is a 3-disc set. Which includes both films on one Blu-ray with each film also included on their own DVD. In terms of Blu-ray presentation, the 1080p transfers are great for “Atlantis: The Lost Empire”, which really looks clear and the colors are beautiful. “Atlantis: Milo’s Return” is not the greatest, especially since it really has that made-for-TV feel to it. Just doesn’t work for me overall. Both films come stocked with a standard, yet impressive DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 audio tracks, same thing applies here also as the video transfer. The first film sounds stunning and very epic, while the sequel does not reach that same level at all. Decent but no wow factor.

The best thing this Blu-ray has going for it that “The Emperor’s New Groove”/”Kronk’s New Groove” and “Lilo & Stitch”/”Lilo & Stitch 2: Stitch Has a Glitch” doesn’t is that it actually has special features on the Blu-ray disc. There is an audio commentary on the first film from producer Don Hahn and directors Gary Trousdale & Kirk Wise.  I actually thought it was quite interesting and informational. “The Making of Atlantis” is a sweet hour long extensive ten-part documentary, which covers all aspects of the production. “The Lost Empire Deleted Scenes” includes four unused scenes. There is one deleted scene from “Milo’s Return” running thirty-two seconds long…really? Lastly there is “How to Speak Atlantean” as a faux news reel, “Atlantis: Fact or Fiction?”, which is fun for the kids and Theatrical Trailers included.

Related Content