Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Happy Holidays Everybody!!!

Greeting everybody!

Here's a last minute post before we piece out on 2014.  Before we depart we are hitting you with a triple whammy of three new releases!

First up is NR-046 Hides A Well: Broken Umbrellas EP.  This EP is a nice little gem of four acoustic songs that'll hold you over while Hides A Well finishes prep on their next full length.  2015 is looking bright already. 

Next, the most fitting release for our December post, is NR-047 NotRock Holiday Compilation Volume: 6.  The 2014 edition is a whopping 20 tracks long sporting a cast of old friends and brand new ones.  Spread some holiday cheer.  Download for free and share it with friends!

Last but certainly not least is NR-048, the debut full length from the newest member of the NotRock Family.  NotRock would like to proudly present The Parliament Of Owls: Dreams On Fire.  Ten rocking indie tunes await your eardrums on this record.  Do not delay.  You can obtain it here on iTunes, amazon, or spottily.

Well that's all the news fit to print this month.  We'll see you here back in January when we'll have exciting developments about Please Exist forthcoming 7" and full length album, as well a some much needed updates/overhauls to some areas of the main NotRock site. 2015 baby! It's going to be a good year.  Until then, be kind, take care, enjoy the holidays, but most importantly enjoy your friends and family.  You never know how long you get to keep them.

Seasons Greetings,

- J.T.F. 

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Autumn's here and we're back at it!

Well hello cyber-universe!

We're back from our summer lull/siesta and we got some news and treats for you just in time for the Halloween season.

The fellas in entia have been busy over the summer cranking out an ep that is sure to surface very soon.   The ep was recorded by James Theesfeld and mixed by J. Robbins!!!  While we await the ep to go live on their bandcamp page you can get a taste of what's in store from their first official video below!

Please Exist have finished up the recordings for their forthcoming 7" record and they sound phenomenal!  The record will feature the song Dominic backed with Good Morning Goodbye.  Once the final master is in and the artwork finished it will all be whisked away to the pressing plant and just a short time away from getting into your grubby little paws.  In addition to recording a new tune for this years NotRock Holiday Comp (more on that below) Please Exist is also prepping to record a whopping new full length in the coming months.  Songs are all written and if all goes according to plan the should start the recording process in November.

Our great new friends the Parliament Of Owls have also been very busy as of late finishing up their debut full length.  It is currently undergoing the mastering process and should be available for your eager ears in the next couple of months.  NotRock is very excited to help release this fantastic band's first record and is very happy to have them join our family.  We'll have more details on this release next month.  In the meantime you can check out the exclusive recording for their song BULLETSTORM that NotRock released on our most recent compilation.

Speaking of compilations… it's that time again.  NotRock is preparing for the release of the annual Holiday Compilation and we need your help!!! We're looking for bands to submit recordings of original or cover tunes that are fitting with the upcoming winter/holiday season.  This is a tradition we've been doing the last six years and hope to continue as long as people keep submitting.  So please tell your friends  and all the bands you know that they have an open invitation to be on the 2014 NotRock Holiday Comp.  All songs must be submitted to by November 15th!!! We can't wait to hear what everybody comes up with.

Lastly, on the music front, we'll leave you with this great little gem that we're obviously very late to the party on.  If you haven't already experienced the greatness of The Tawny Blooms stop reading this and click the link below.  We had the pleasure of seeing these songs preformed live last month and it was quite a refreshing experience.  It's just really nice music. Plain and simple.  Give it a whirl.  

In non-music news the next installment of John's film FALLOUT CHRONICLES has made it to the TERROR FILM FESTIVAL for the third year in a row.  This year will see the screening of Chapter 3 and Chapter 4 together in one presentation from Oct 30th - Nov 1st.  The festival is being run a little differently this year and will be featured ONLINE ONLY.  The good news is you'll be able to catch it on the internet for those three days at any time of day.  So be sure to check out the world premiere of Chapter 4 at the end of the month via the Terror Film Festival website.

Ok kiddies, that's all the news fit to print this month.  See you back here in thirty!

- J.T.F.

p.s. What's your favorite Halloween/Horror movie?

Monday, June 30, 2014

Benny & June

Howdy Partners,

Hopefully all of you are enjoying this lovely summer season.  This month's post will be mega-brief due to John spending every moment of free time completing the latest installment of his film serial Fallout Chronicles.  Speaking of which Chapter One of F.C. will be screening July 31st at The Yellow Ape Film Festival!  If anyone will be in the Long Island neighbor hood of the festival be sure to swing by.  It looks like it'll be a crazy great time.

The only updates we have for you this month is that the final mixes of Please Exist's forthcoming 7"recordings should be in any day now and entia is finishing up their debut recording.  They have mixing dates scheduled for August and are expected to include these recordings on a split 12" record.

On another note we happened to catch Ohio band The Heel the other night and they we're a blast! Check out their indie-pop-punk EP:

Ok well that's the all the news fit to print this month.  See you in thirty when we'll have a more thorough update on local happenings.   Until then enjoy the summer and enjoy life.

- J.T.F

Saturday, May 31, 2014


Greetings Everybody,

We hope you're all doing well out there on planet Earth.  We're back to give you another small serving of music news this lovely (but slightly cold) month of May.  For any who may have missed it please do check out the recently released Hides A Well music video for their hit single "Secret Sitcoms".  It was directed by John and stars many a friend from the local music scene.  It's CARDBOARDTASTIC!!!!

In other news entia has entered the studio and tracked drums for five tunes.  In addition to that session off camber also tracked drums for the remaining unreleased/unrecorded material from their catalog.  It's currently unclear where or how the recordings from either band will be released but as this process continues we'll be sure to keep you informed.

On the friend front, our pal Francie Moon has embarked on an extensive summer tour and in conjunction has realeased a nice little companion record.  It contains 7 eclectic tunes covering the full spectrum of emotional tones.  Support the Francie Moon team and check it out! NotRock wishes F.M. the best of luck on tour!

Speaking of friends, Makout Vertigo has graced us with a 4 song EP serving up another helping of indie-pop gems.  "Slumber Party Wounds" is a fantastic follow up to their debut EP "Smoking In The Girls Room" and yet another solid entry to the ever growing Beta Snake Records catalog.  Our only complaint: Can we get a full length next time? Be sure to check out "Slumber Party Wounds" ASAP!

...and they released this really kick ass video to go along with it!

Well that's all the news fit to print this month.  Check in next month for updates on a whole mess of exciting stuff.  Hopefully the online shop will be updated by then as well.  Until then be kind, take care, and make good art!

- J.T.F.

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Remembering My Brother Jesse Patterson

Greetings to all,

       Although there are many things going on in the local music scene, there is only one thing that deserves my full undivided attention in this month's post.  For any who've been spared the heartbreaking news,  regretfully I inform you that our beloved Jesse Patterson has passed on from this world.  I'd like to take this opportunity to remember one of the finest human beings I've ever know.

       I first met Jesse in kindergarten where we struck up a good enough friendship to earn me an invite to his TEE-BALL Birthday Party.  I recall the party being a blast (even though picture evidence shows 6 year old me sporting some ridiculous high cut red shorts) but what also sticks out in my mind is the memory of me being the first guest to arrive at Jesse's house.  Before the other kids arrived Jesse and I walked around his backyard getting some things ready for the much anticipated tee-ball.  I remember taking in how funny he was as he interacted with his little sister and how cool he played it off after his mom came outside to inquire why the same little sister just ran in the house screaming.  Jesse was a cool guy even back then and I'm certain had we lived closer to one another we would've been great friends.

       As we continued through grade school I continued to know him but we didn't often have classes together.  Middle school was not too much different for the same reason.  There was certainly some overlap in our class schedules but at the time I knew him most because he was the best friend of my good friend Shawn (who I also met in kindergarten).   When 8th grade came to a close Shawn had fantastic graduation party that was full of cheese doodles, impromptu swimming in White Meadow Lake (there's nothing quite like going swimming in the pants you'll be wearing the rest of the day) and LIVE MUSIC.  Now, when I say live music I don't mean there was some hired guns at the party.  It wasn't somebody's uncle's lame, half-assed cover-band.  No, this was a couple kids with a crappy guitar rig and a dilapidated drum-set on Shawn's lawn and they were wailing the hell out of it.  It wasn't just anyone doing it either, it was Jesse and Shawn.   I never really thought of it this way until now (it's quite fitting really) but I guess technically this was my first show.  Although there were a few others that rocked out on the lawn that day, my memory holds strong to the imagery and feeling I had seeing these two buddies of mine doing something I wished I could.  Me and the rest of the kids (including James, our mutual friend since kindergarten) in the crowd spent what seemed like hours leaping off of big rocks, bouncing off each other, and acting completely goofy all the while a live rock n roll soundtrack was played by our friends.  There is video of this "Rockaway Underground" floating around somewhere and I'm sure if I saw it now we'd all look like silly little kids.   Regardless of what I'm sure the reality of that video footage is, it can never take away the feeling and the memory of that day and the way I still see it in my head.

       The following year dealt another trying blow to the consistency of our possible friendship as Jesse and James went to one high school and Shawn and I another.  Freshman and sophomore year blew by and as I remained good friends with Shawn he inadvertently kept me in the loop about Jesse.   I heard Shawn talk about them making music together and starting a band with some other kids on numerous occasions.   The concept was intriguing to me as I too had finally mustered the courage to learn drums in hopes to get good enough to play in a band with another couple of my closest friends.  Cut to junior year when me actually being in a band with my buddies became a reality (in the interim Jesse and Shawn had shortly been in a band and since dissolved).  In November 1998 I got the chance to play a show or two locally and I was thrilled to see that in the audience were my old friends Jesse and James.  A couple of months later my band played another local show.  Shawn, Jesse, and their friend Joe (who was from their old band but helped them out for this one show) played the opening slot as The Panic Squad.  It was pretty great to see them play that night.  The songs were short, taught and catchy.  Even though the music my friends were making once again made me want to bounce around, the skill and musicianship between Shawn and Jesse had come a long way since I'd seen them rocking on Shawn's lawn a few summer's before.   A couple months later Shawn and Jesse found their permanent bass player in Liz and with her they became Annoying Customer.

       It's no secret that Annoying Customer is my favorite band of all time.  Right out of the gate I loved everything about them.  Are there people that can play instruments with more technical skill than them? Sure.  Are there people that play with more intensity? Sure.  Is there a more perfect band out there that gives me exactly what I'm looking for any time I listen to them? Not a chance.  I defy you to find music that satisfies my ears and soul the way it does when those three individuals play together.  Seeing Annoying Customer at that point in my life was incredible.  Here are my peers the same age and grade as me and they're making music that I could listen to ALL the time.  Music that I WANTED to listen too all the time!  With most live bands I've ever seen I will often find myself focusing on the drummer.  I watch that individual, observing what and how they're playing, mainly to see how I might incorporate some of what they're are doing into my own playing.  Annoying Customer was no exception and in those days when my drumming skills were in their infancy, I endlessly borrowed and blatantly ripped off Jesse's beats.   The great thing about Jesse is that he is a drummer that does exactly what the song needs.  Sometimes you can watch a drummer and think "huh that was a really odd choice for that part of the song" or "wow we really didn't need a crazy drum fill over that quiet part" but when you hear a Jesse drumbeat it just works.  You listen to the song and just know that's exactly the beat that is supposed go along with Shawn's guitar riff.  It's magic.  Around this time I started figuring out how to play something other than the "devil's haircut by beck dust brothers techno" beat.  I was just kind of getting my head around the old, straight forward, punk one-two beat but when I watched Jesse play "Pants On Fire" at an A.C. band practice it blew me away how much subtle variety and nuance can make a difference in a song.  The slight variance of the bass drum to accentuate the guitar riff in that song was a revelation to me.  It's such a simple straight forward thing but I was just a dumb kid that had no formal drum training so seeing this and understanding it was something that really laid down the building blocks of all my future playing.   I think that and also Jesse's break down beats (particularly the triple snare hits in songs like "Eternia" and "Girl I Knew Not") are the things that have had the biggest impression on me and have stuck with me to the point where I still rip them off today.  On top of his ability to play really well Jesse always demonstrated a marvelous ability to not take himself too seriously, to have fun, and to have an excellent sense of showmanship.  Often times at a show if Annoying Customer was playing "Lemmings", easily their most aggressive song, Jesse would break out a wolf mask and play the entire song wearing it.  Quite a few times during the bass/guitar solo in their vintage hit "Wynnona Ryder" Jesse would take advantage of his free time by getting up from behind the drum kit to hurl handfuls of candy into the crowd.  I don't think Jesse could make it through a set without making a goofy face while playing a fill or taking advantage of drum break with his patented head turn straight arm cymbal smash.  He would do these things but never at the expense of the song.  He'd never miss a beat doing it.  If you spotted them, these were little things that made Annoying Customer that much more enjoyable to see live.  Out of all the people who've borrowed my drums at shows over the years, Jesse is the only person who I would allow to use my cymbals.  Not because I knew he wouldn't break them, but because I loved the music he Shawn and Liz made so much that I didn't care if he broke them while doing it.  I just wanted to see them play no matter when, where or what it cost me.  My drumming owes a lot to Jesse and the fundamentals he unintentionally taught me.  I'm forever grateful for that.  Even though it's devastating to imagine Jesse's absence from the music scene I know and love, the music he and Annoying Customer created over the years and the show's they've played will forever live on in my heart.

       Between show's and the newfound freedom  a couple of friends with licenses gave us, Jesse became a regular figure in my life more than ever before.  On memorial day of 99 a bunch of us friends got together at a local park to have a bbq/picnic. We spent the day eating good food, hanging out, and playing softball.  I really believe on that day our core group of friends was established.  A group that through thick and thin has persevered through the years as we all grew up together.  Since then we continued the memorial day tradition every year and as the amount of attendees expanded and contracted over time I don't think there has ever been one that Jesse missed.  He was a regular fixture at these events taking on the captain role at the grill and tearing it up playing bocci ball.  I always looked forward to these yearly gatherings and for me it didn't really matter who showed up because I always knew that at the very least Jesse would be there and that meant I was guaranteed a good time.

       As I got to know Jesse more and more the more I liked about him.  He was easy going, super funny and very kind.  During senior year of high school Jesse and myself (as well as friends James and Ned) took jobs at the local ACME supermarket.  At the time I did not have a car and Jesse often was the one who would drive me to or from work.  We would all often take our lunch breaks together and Jesse and I would bond over Evil Dead quotes, music, our love of Star Wars, Willow, Jim Henson, and horrible customers (I recall one particular gem where Jesse thwarted a customer's attempt to smuggle lobster tails in a bag of corn).  Senior year eventually made way for summer which rolled out with many more group hang outs, shows, pool parties (including the Jesse burger incident) and a very memorable trip to the shore.

       Summer came to an end and our group of friends all went in different directions to attend different colleges and such.  This is a time that, in a lot of peoples lives, ends up being when old friendships go by the wayside as new people come into the mix.  Certainly we all met new friends at school and other places but our core group of still remained tight and damn near unbreakable.  It seemed like every time an extended weekend approached or holiday break we all jumped at the chance to get together and hang out again.   During Christmas vacation of my freshman year of college I was invited to, and brought aboard an already longstanding tradition in Jesse's household, the Christmas Eve Taco Party.  This party had been going on annually since Jesse was a kid and now I was finally in the mix friends who was a part of it.  This was the first time I was reintroduced to Jesse's family since the TEE-BALL party and I was so taken with what pleasant and caring people they were.  It made sense why Jesse was such an awesome guy.  He came from a family of amazing people.  The kindness and love that was extended from them to all of us big kids (then and every year since) was/is awe inspiring and not taken lightly.  Christmas was always my favorite holiday but Christmas Eve soon became a day of the year I looked forward to more than any other.  The Patterson Taco Party is something I wouldn't miss for the world.  I think the only person who looked forward to it more than me was Jesse.

       The following years passed by with many other grand adventures: camping, trips to the shore, memorial day bbq's, fourth of July picnics, fireworks, shows, hikes, poking rattle snakes with sticks, midnight movies, video games, flea markets, and weddings.  Through it all our group of friends swayed a bit here and there but always remained strong and intact.  In these later years Jesse had become a very good and dear friend to me.  He was always willing to donate his time for me whether it be acting in my movie or offering to burn hundreds of CD's for NotRock compilations.  But more than anything I enjoyed his company.  You always felt at ease in his presence and welcome in his home.  This is such a silly thing but there was a time when all my friends refused to play monopoly with me because I'd always win or they were warned by others not to play with me because I always won (also people refused to play such a long game).  Regardless none of that mattered to Jesse and one night he invited me over to play.  Stoked at the prospect of playing and defending my title again, I went over his house and he proceeded to kick my ass.  He kicked my ass and you know what?  I had a blast relinquishing my monopoly crown to him.  He deserved it.  See the thing is that Jesse is one of the smartest people, if not the smartest person I've ever known (His cleverness should not be understated either.  He wrote the lyrics to Annoying Customer songs "Pokemon", "Eternia" and "Purple K" (the greatest A.C. song never written).  The wealth of knowledge in that head was astounding to me and where that may seem like it should've been intimidating, it was not.  Without a doubt Jesse was a smarter person than I but he never acted like it or viewed it this way.  You always felt as an equal when talking to him.  You always felt he was fully engaged in taking in anything you had to say.  He made you feel appreciated and overall it just felt good to be around him.  I don't think I've ever felt funnier than when I was hanging out with Jesse.  Without fail, more than anyone, I could always make him laugh.

       Jesse was an awesome guy plain and simple.  He's a guy who did everything right in my book.  I looked up to him.  He had a cool job, a house, a cool cat, rode a motorcycle, was a beekeeper and had lovely wife.  He was going through life the way most people dream about and I admired the hell out of him for it.  "We really need to hang out with them more often." was something my ladyfriend  and I said anytime we had just seen Jesse and Jae.  Fortunately we had the privilege of going on quite a few adventures with them but we'd always wished it was more.  Jesse and Jae were the best kind of company to be in and I truly admire the loving relationship they had with one another.  Jesse was easily one of the greatest people I've ever know.  He's the kind of man and friend all should aspire to be.  I am honored, privileged, and grateful to have had such a friend in this lifetime  but I, as many are, am now heartbroken knowing this amazing person's absence in my life is a void that will never be filled.  I will forever cherish the times we shared together and the amazing memories we made.  Jesse you've been my colleague in film and music, you are my friend, you are my brother, and I love you.  If there is something that happens after this life then I hope with all my heart to see you there.  Until we meet again, rest easy my brother.  Rest easy and in peace.

- John Thomas Fisher

Monday, March 31, 2014


Hello fellow earthians,

Welcome back as we close out the month of March with a big bang.  The first bit of extremely exciting news is that, after much trial and tribulation, NotRock Sampler Volume: IV has finally been released.  This massive two part compilation (our largest effort to date!) is rocking a whopping 45 tracks from different artists of varying genres so there's something for everybody.  Many of the tracks are exclusive to the compilation so you won't be able to hear them anywhere else!  Please download and share with anyone you can via the links provided below.  The physical copies will be a 2-disc cd release with a fold out liner available in 5 different colors. Those tangible copies are in production now and are expected to hit the streets in late April or early May. Stay tuned for info regarding the official release show for this jumbo record.
As stated above this comp is a two parter so be sure not to overlook part two!!!

Ok moving on to some other fun local stuff before we wrap for the month.  Rabbit Velvet, who has a track on the compilation listed above, just released a brand new 4-song E.P.  This band is unlike anything else going on in the NJ scene currently and is quite frankly a breath of fresh air (for the ears).  Check out the Fuzz Mother E.P. now!

Next up is a new E.P. from our friends in Fox Reactions (who also have a track on the comp above).  This self-titled E.P. packs in 3 songs of what Fox Reactions does best: throwing down intense, catchy, punk tunes in short controlled bursts. Clocking in just under five and a half minutes it's easy for this E.P. to leave you wanting more but it's worth the wait if they keep putting out records this good.  Check it out!

Alright, so last but not least we leave you with an E.P. from a newer music project called Mom's Favorite Flower.  This band is not on the above comp but if they surfaced a little sooner we would've asked them to be. Check out the Real Stuff E.P. for a couple of really nice indie tunes. Hopefully we'll see a lot more from this act in the future.

Well that's all the news fit to print this fine month.  Hopefully the coming weeks will see some warmer weather so you can roll the windows down whilst blasting these great new tunes.  Until next time take care, be kind, and make great art.

- J.T.F.

P.S. Oh by the way, the next chapter of John's movie Fallout Chronicles just came out! Check it out.

Friday, February 28, 2014

Lovely Fragile February

Greetings everybody!

Welcome back to another serving of NotRock Monthly Mayhem (which will henceforth be referred to as NRMM).  This month we've got music and videos galore so scroll your eyes down,  tune your ears in and enjoy the ride.

First up,  Hides A Well hot off the rails of their recent  full-length, have complimented that with a brand new 4-song EP: Temporary Tattoos.  This little gem (sporting 3 non-album tracks) contains a new recording of fan favorite "Crooked Portrait" as well as an acoustic version of new song "Tiny Galaxies".  Between this EP and their forthcoming music video for "Secret Sitcoms" 2014 is already shaping up to be a pretty good year for Hides A Well.  Keep a look out for what else they have in store.

Next, our friends on the west coast, Earth Anchor, have just released another wicked EP that demands your attention post haste.  5 songs of explosive mod-alt-rock jam pack this little record with BIG sound.  This record totally rips. If John still worked at a record store this EP would most definitely be found under the "John's Picks" section for the next few months.  Don't waste another second not checking it out. Plus they made these rad videos to accompany their EP.  Watch one below the other here.

In other cool happenings from our friends in distant lands, check out this video from our pennsy
pals The Lampshades! and if you haven't yet, get at their newish ep!

As Please Exist wraps details and the recordings of their forthcoming 7" work has actually resumed on their long overdue and anticipated debut full length.  All the instrument tracking is essentially done and two tracks now are complete with vocals! HUZZAH!  Here's hoping work will continue with haste and that record might finally see the light of day this year.  Either way there seems to be no stopping their songwriting output with them just finalizing the line-up of tunes that will ultimately be their second full length.  If all goes well and according to plan 2014 will be a big and busy year for this power duo.

Lastly, for those of you who missed  Disseriph's 2/21/14 show, you not only missed the debut of Disseriph as a full band with Jake and Dylan backing up and filling out Adam's already well crafted, amazing songs, but you also missed one of the best live performances that our local scene has seen in a long time. Possibly ever.  Luckily the entire set was caught on video and can be watched below.  It doesn't completely capture the magic that was in the room that night but unless you're good friends with Dr. Emmet Brown this is the best you're going to get.  Enjoy.

Well that's all the news fit to print this fine month.  We hope you are all doing well and creating great art.  See ya back here in thirty (when hopefully we'll finally be able to announce that the current bane of our existence record; NotRock Sampler IV has been released). Until then be kind and take care.

- J.T.F.

Friday, January 31, 2014


Welcome back and Happy New Year Kiddies!

We are coming at you with a brief last minute update for the frigid month of January...

Now that all that Holiday hogwash is behind us the train is back on the rails and headed for NotRock Sampler IV station.  This is our most jam packed compilation yet sporting a whopping 45 tracks!  This digital/2 CD release will have tracks by: Atlas, Avoider, Bad Pilgrim, Bible Fiction, Brick Mower, Cephalopods And Their Allies, Deja Gravy, Dirty Thirties, Disseriph, Earth Anchor, Fox Reactions, Francie Moon, Frootza, Hell Mary, Hides A Well, Hipstercrite, Human Era, Jayce Rova, Jinxter, JKB3, Joe Egan, John T. Fisher, Kamp Koala, Little Light, Lost Wax, Makeout Vertigo, Parliament Of Owls, Pixl Visionary, Please Exist, Purple Suns, Rabbit Velvet, Riley Stallings, Sally, Second Born Son, Skateboard Kyle, Smoke Tomb, The Dark Matters, The Lampshades, The Lies, Thera Roya, Tiny Teeth, Trans Charger Metropolitan, We Used To Love, Young American Artists, and Young Legs.  All the elements have come together and physical production (hopefully it'll all fit on 2 CD's)  begins very soon.  The digital release will be available next month!!! Stay tuned for our February post which will include info about the physical release and the show(s) that will commemorate said compilation.

The next exciting tidbit of news is that Please Exist recently went into Missile Silo Studios to track two songs that will be released for their first and NotRock's very first 7" record!  Much more on that will be revealed next month.  Stay tuned!

So far 2014 is off to a pretty good start so stick around and see what else we've got cooking!

Sorry but that's all the news fit to print this month.  There's too much to do!!!

Make ART and be kind,