Against Me! at the Upstate Concert Hall: Photos and Recap

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Last night, Step Up Presents brought a packed bill of a punk blend featuring the prolific veterans Against Me! alongside Kayleigh Goldsworthy, the Menzingers and the Icarus Line.

Walking in around 8, we caught the tail end of a serenade from Kayleigh Goldsworthy who performed acoustic to kick the festivities off. Goldsworthy, from Brooklyn, also is involved with the Scarlet Ending, a six-piece out of Syracuse whose single “The Way We Used To Be” was featured on MTV’s “The Hills.”

Next up, was the Menzingers, a punk quartet based out of Philadelphia. The Menzingers started off with “Casey,” a track off of their latest album, On The Impossible Past,” which is their debut release on Epitaph Records. The vocal duties were split between guitarists depending on the song. The vocals were very crisp and clean, which is always appreciated and notable when you haven’t heard a band before and you can follow along with what they are belting. The Menzingers displayed distinctive vocals over a range of calming to fast-paced melodies and the crowd instantly picked up subconscious clues to clap along when the time was right.

The Menzingers’ set showcased growth in their sound, building with the night and it was a balanced arrangement from their catalog. For an opening band, they assumed the proper role of an opening band (something that is as important as it is difficult to achieve) and they engaged the audience in a way that the band that played after them (the Icarus Line) didn’t succeed in at all. For the Menzingers’ time on stage, people inched up close and were really captivated by it; those who could sing along, did.

Click the image above or hit the jump to see the gallery and the full recap.

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Albany Distilling Company to host First Annual Growing the Community Gala

The newly-opened Albany Distilling Company will be holding a cocktail reception hosted by the New Leaders Council of the Capital District. This is a really neat way to be able to check out the new distillery, eat some great food and support a good cause. The event will be catered by the Albany Pump Station.

The event will be held Wednesday June 20 at 5:30 pm and will benefit the New Leaders Council of the Capital District. Their organization’s goal is to recruit, support and train the next generation of progressive leaders in the community. There will also be a 50/50 raffle, the proceeds of which will go to the Trinity Park Fund to aid those affected by the April Park Avenue fire.

Historic Albany Foundation’s Susan Holland as well as the Empire State Pride Agenda will be honored for making positive difference in the Capital District.

You can check out the event’s facebook event page and you can buy tickets online. Tickets are $30 for one person and $50 for two.

Photo: Dylan Boyce

Restoration Festival 2012 Details Announced

The B3nson Recording Collective has announced the first headliner, The Kamikaze Hearts, for this year’s Rest Fest. In addition to this, the festival is now three days, instead of two, and also has moved to the weekend of September 7-9th to skip Labor Day and the return of students to classes.

Rest Fest organizers will be announcing more details on the 7th of each month, leading up to September 7th.

You can check out The Kamikaze Hearts on their YouTube channel.

Hit the jump to see the full press release.

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Cuomo challenges stop-and-frisk with legislature to decriminalize possession of <25g of marijuana

Today Andrew Cuomo announced a plan to reduce the number of people searched and subsequently arrested by Mayor Bloomberg’s racist stop-and-frisk policy.

The legislations calls for the penalty of possession of fewer than 25 grams of weed to be changed from a misdemeanor to a violation. Marijuana was decriminalized in New York State in 1977; possession of fewer than 25 grams of marijuana is a violation but once someone stopped-and-frisked, and asked to empty their pockets and their stash becomes public, it instantly becomes a misdemeanor that can result in arrest. There were over 50,000 marijuana arrests last year in New York City.

Read the full scoop at The New York Times.

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Caleb Lionheart + After The Fall Split 7″ Release Show: Recap and Photos

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Last night was the release show for the Caleb Lionheart/After The Fall split 7″. There were a lot of familiar faces in attendance as well as a good turn out, which was exactly what I had expected. I unfortunately missed the opening bands but made it to Valentine’s in time to catch the last four Caleb Lionheart songs. It’s amazing to see locals and out of towners alike singing to two of my long time favorite Albany bands. Caleb and ATF both always do an amazing, high-energy job every time they play live. You owe it to yourself to catch them both as soon as you can.

The split itself is a long time coming and both bands contributions to it are awesome. You can stream Caleb Lionheart’s side as well as After The Fall’s on their bandcamps. Also you can buy the split on the Better Days Records website.

Hit the jump or click the photo above to launch the gallery.

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Ticket Giveaway: EPROM with NastyNasty and Sleepyhead

The good folks over at the Interstellar Pig shared with us a pair of tickets for you to win for the upcoming EPROM affair at the Upstate Concert Hall (formerly known as Northern Lights). EPROM will be joined by NastyNasty, Sleepyhead, OUTPOST1 alum Tony Quattro and Klytrix. It all goes down on Saturday, June 16th.

You can find full event details and artist bios over on the event page. Also be sure to show love to Interstellar Pig and check ‘em out on Facebook.

As always, don’t enter if you can’t attend and be sure to check your phone early afternoon on Friday when we’ll pick a winner. Hit the jump to enter!

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St. Joeseph’s on the brink of sale (Update: It’s a brewery)

Update: The potential buyers are New Jersey based Ravens Head Brewing, and they want to turn it into a brewery/restaurant/event space. AOA lays out the plan and details. The meeting is tonight at 5:30 at the Ten Broeck Mansion.

In passing, the Times Union dropped this little guy in an article discussing the new fascination with rehabing churches after the whole St. Patricks vs. Price Chopper thing.

St. Joseph’s is on the verge of being sold to a firm that would use the building. A meeting is set for Tuesday, June 5, with the neighborhood to discuss the proposal.

It’s been over ten years since the city of Albany took St. Josephs from Elda Abate (who, surprise, owns Elda’s on Lark) and the community rejected plans for her noon to 4am operating time for a banquet facility. The Historic Albany Foundation is close to raising $300,000 to receive a matched grant from the state for further restorations of the structure.

The panel begins at 5:30pm and is scheduled at the Ten Broeck mansion. If you know of anything regarding the buyer leave it in a comment or you can anonymously submit with the contact form (and a fake email) above.