April 2015


Last Monday, April 20th, a Federal Circuit panel upheld the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s denial of a trademark registration for Portland, Oregon-based Asian-American dance-rock band, The Slants, because it is offensive to people of Asian descent.  Following the three-person panel’s decision, The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit said it was issuing a Sua Sponte order, vacating the panel’s decision to uphold the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s refusal to trademark the band’s name.

This decision reinstated The Slants’ original appeal, and The U.S. Court of Appeals of the Federal Circuit will now hear the case en banc (in front of all the judges, not a select panel) regarding the constitutionality of the Trademark Office's decision.

Comprised of Simon Young (bass), Tyler Chen (drums), Will Moore (lead guitar), Thai Dao (guitar/keys), and Ken Shima (vocals), the quintet has tried for years to trademark “The Slants,” but has been rejected twice by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

Band founder and leader Simon Tam (who’s stage name is Simon Young) formally applied for a trademark in 2010, but a trademark examiner rejected the application, saying that a substantial portion of the Asian-American community would be offended.  Tam tried again in 2011, dropping the “reclaiming a stereotype” position and arguing that there is nothing inherently racist about the word "slants."  The same trademark examiner again rejected the application.

“I consider the name a point of cultural pride,” he continues.  “One of the first things people say is that we have slanted eyes.  I thought, ‘What a great way to reclaim that stereotype and take ownership of it,’ and, in doing so, take away the power from those who try to use it as a term of hate.  Our band uses our name to refer to our perspectives and experiences in life as people of color.  It's our "slant," if you will - and we choose to empower others that way.”

Following the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s decision, The Slants’ took their case to the U.S. appeals court, which ruled last Monday that The Slants’ couldn’t trademark their name, because it is disparaging.

“I'm deeply disappointed, but not entirely surprised,” said Tam regarding the decision.  “We've been fighting this battle for nearly six years and I knew that this wouldn't be easy.  However, I think it is terrible that the Trademark Office can easily dismiss the opinions of Asian Americans on the issues without actually talking to anyone in our community.”

Judge Kimberly Moore also wrote an unprecedented twenty-three page separate opinion entitled "Additional Views," which questions the constitutionality of Section 2(a) of the Lanham Act, the law which has been used to justify the denial of The Slants' registration.  She states, "Trademarks - which are applied to private goods to identify the source of the goods for consumers - are private speech, not ‘government speech.’” And while she continues to affirm that The Slants can still keep the band name, they have to do so without the substantive benefits of a trademark registration

“Not only do they frame our very quotes out of context, but they persist in using misinformation,” explains Tam.  “For example, they incorrectly state that a band performance at an Asian American conference was cancelled due to controversy over our name.  However, in 2010, a signed declaration was provided by a member of the steering committee, the organization in question, who stated, they ‘would not be able to accommodate The Slants’ performance logistically due to a limited budget.  The decision was not in any way based on the band’s name.’  Furthermore, the band's name was printed in the program with no complaints by the community - and the band performed in subsequent years without any issues.  Despite this, the Trademark Office continued deliberately use the false information in numerous rejections and even in the oral arguments presented before the Federal Circuit in 2015.”

“The Trademark Office and Federal Circuit continues to misreport that the Japanese American Citizens Alliance also has issues with the name by using an outdated brochure, despite receiving signed letters of support from prominent members and vocal support through Pacific Citizen, the organization's national publication,” he continues.  “They write, ‘In the past, the word slant is considered an outdated term to the band and other community members.  The long-held racial slur against Asian Americans is now a source of empowerment and change.’”

Since 2007, The Slants have performed at over seven hundred events across North America, including headlining appearances at Asian American festivals and conferences in dozens of states, without a single formal complaint.  Additionally, the band has raised over $1,000,000.00 (one million dollars) for charitable organizations, used their influence to help increase voting rates in the Asian Pacific Islander community, and leads workshops on Asian American issues across the country.

Furthermore, Tam has been the keynote presenter at numerous Asian American social justice conventions.  He has also delivered several TED talks discussing the social justice and activism.  Both Tam and the band has received numerous accolades for their antiracism work.

"The recent decision seems to be politically driven, with no actual consideration of the context of how is used,” comments Tam.  “The Trademark Office inappropriately used my race when making their decision, they cherry-picked definitions in racial slur databases instead of using contemporary dictionaries, and they misquoted me as well as multiple Asian American organizations that have proudly supported us for nearly a decade now.  They should be held accountable for these actions.  One thing is clear: we will not back down.  This is much bigger than our band.  It's about the principle.  This is about doing what is right - not just for us, but for all marginalized communities who have faced administrative battles cause by a lack of cultural competency."

The Federal Court’s decision to issue a Sua Sponte order vacating the panel’s decision is historical because this Court of Appeals almost never revisits issues by its own doing (sua sponte).  Usually, rehearing en banc has to be filed by a party (and even then, it is rarely granted).  Finally, the court rarely discusses constitutional issues (they usually focus on procedural ones), so this is incredibly rare.

Twelve judges will now decide whether Section 2(a) of the Lanham Act is constitutional or not, and if the Trademark Office’s denial for a trademark was constitutional, linking The Slants’ case directly with the First Amendment of the Constitution.

CNN, NBC News, and Reuters have all recently picked up the story:

http://www.cnn.com/2015/04/23/opinions/randazza-slants-ruling

http://www.nbcnews.com/news/asian-america/could-slants-trademark-suit-affect-nfls-redskins-flap-n349586

http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/04/27/ip-slants-trademark-ruling-idUSL1N0XO2RZ20150427


Disney Channel's original movie Disney Descendants will be coming this summer and they have released a trailer! The story is said to go like this;

"Ever asked yourself what happened to the Disney Villains after the movie ends and our favorite heroes get their happily ever after? Well, wonder no more. According to Disney Descendants, an upcoming Disney Channel Original Movie, they were banished to the Isle of the Lost where they raised their children without magic, but with a healthy amount of mischief. Consider our interest piqued. But then! Add Ben, (Belle and Beast’s son) convincing his dad to let the Villain Kids (from here on out we shall refer to them as VKs) go to school with all the children of heroes and royalty at Auradon Prep! Of course, the villains see this at their chance at redemption, and the VKs see it as a chance to make their parents proud, but as the trailer tells us, high school is complicated."

The film is directed by Kenny Ortega (High School Musicial/Newies) and stars Dove Cameron as Mal (Maleficent’s daughter), Booboo Stewart as Jay (Jafar’s son), Cameron Boyce as Carlos (Cruella de Vil’s son), Sofia Carson as Evie (Evil Queen’s daughter), Kristen Chenoweth as Maleficent herself, and Kathy Najimy as Evil Queen.

Check out the trailer HERE.


Cradle Of Filth will be releasing their eleventh album to date entitled "Hammer Of The Witches via Nuclear Blast Records. The album's artwork and tracklisting can be seen below. The album itself will be made available in a physical copy, limited edition digipak, mail order edition and a 2LP vinyl.

TRACKLISTING:

1. Walpurgis Eve
2. Yours Immortally…
3. Enshrined In Crematoria
4. Deflowering The Maidenhead, Displeasuring The Goddess
5. Blackest Magick In Practice
6. The Monstrous Sabbat (Summoning The Coven)
7. Hammer Of The Witches
8. Right Wing Of The Garden Triptych
9. The Vampyre At My Side
10. Onward Christian Soldiers
11. Blooding The Hounds Of Hell

Limited-edition digipak cd and vinyl bonus tracks:
12. King Of The Woods
13. Misericord


It's been five years since Dommin released their debut album "Love Is Gone". Now that some time has passed so has the band writing and recording for the long overdue follow-up release entitled "Rise". The band has gone along to release a new song and video for the title track "Rise". As well as released pre-order availability via PledgeMusic HERE. Check out the new tune and video for it HERE.


December In Red will be heading out on The Way Out Tour with (hed) p.e. this summer! Find out where from the dates listed below.

TOUR DATES:

5/22 - Saginaw, Mich. — Red Room
5/23 - Hillsboro, Wis. — Rocking for Heroes / The Bullpen
5/24 - Chippewa, Falls, Wis. — Every Buddy’s Bar
5/26 - Cudahay, Wis. — The Metal Grill
5/29 - Springfield, Mo. — The Outland
5/30 - Wichita, Kan. — Crown Uptown
5/31 - Tulsa, Okla. — Vanguard
6/2 - Tucson, Ariz. — The Rock
6/3 - Costa Mesa, CA - Tiki Bar
6/10 Seattle, WA - Studio Steven


ForeverAtLast have announced that they will be headlining The Ghost Story tour with support coming from The Funeral Portrait! Find out where below!

TOUR DATES:

6/1 - His Rock Music - Cumming, GA
6/2 - A&M Theatre - Panama City, FL
6/3 - Wills Pub, Orlando, FL
6/4 - 1984 music hall - Jacksonville, FL
6/5 - The Frankendiner - Brunswick, GA
6/6 - TBA - Raleigh, NC
6/7 - TBA - Statesvile, NC
6/8 - Ground Zero - Spartanburg, SC
6/9 Cloud Springs Deli - Ringgold, GA
6/10 - Rocketown - Nashville, TN.
6/11 - Main Street Youth Center - Murray, KY.
6/12 - Refuge Coffee - Carlinville, IL.
6/13 - MSM Fest - Morristown, IN


30 years have passed since GWAR awoke from the prison of their Antarctic slumber in 1985. Since that time, the band has used broadswords and guitars to shape the music and culture of mankind. 30 years later, the world sucks more than it ever has, and humans have GWAR to thank!  Three decades of bloodlust, throttling the life from humanity, and perverting the human imagination have left no doubt that GWAR rules supreme!

What better way to celebrate this momentous occasion than with a spectacular victory lap bringing death and depravity to cities across America? GWAR's  "30 Years of Total Domination Tour" is a celebration of unimaginable torment. Expect more blood and bodily fluids than ever before as your Lords and Masters take on the newest threat to their very existence-the Internet! That's right, GWAR is going to kick the Internet's ass; if they can ever stop jerking off to porn long enough to find it. Pustulus is none too pleased about the situation, having this to say while "taking 5" from his weekly schedule of drawing dicks on bible pages...

"I've survived prisons, gulags, religious protests, surfing a crucial wave on D-Day, and even an ISIS spaghetti dinner, so this is nothing. Bring it on! GWAR is coming!, Where is Baltimore?"

Support on the tour will come from Butcher Babies and Battlecross.  The tour kicks off August 25th in Millvale, PA and wraps up September 18th in Rochester, NY.  Tickets go on sale this Friday May 1st for all shows!


TOUR DATES:

8/25: Millvale, PA @ Mr. Smalls Theater
8/27: Des Moines, IA @ Wooly's
8/28: Lincoln, NE @ Bourbon Theater
8/30: Lawrence, KS @ Granada
8/31: Tulsa, OK @ Cain's Ballroom
9/1: San Antonio, TX @ Kapones
9/2: Baton Rouge, LA @ Varsity Theater
9/3: Mobile, AL @ Soul Kitchen
9/4: Birmingham, AL @ Iron City
9/5: New Albany, IN @ Rustic Frog - Befuddled Fest
9/6: Winston-Salem, NC @ Ziggys
9/8: Wilmington, NC @ Ziggys By the Sea
9/9: Jacksonville, FL @ Freebird Live
9/10: Chattanooga, TN @ Track 29
9/11: Sauget, IL @ Pop's
9/14: Poughkeepsie, NY @ The Chance
9/15: So. Burlington, VT @ Higher Ground
9/16: Reading, PA @ Reverb
9/17: Huntington, NY @ The Paramount
9/18: Rochester, NY @ Water Street Music Hall


BabyMetal has released a trailer for their new DVD "Live In London" due out May 20, 2015. The tracklisting and DVD artwork have also been released and can be viewed below. Check out the trailer HERE.


BABYMETAL「LIVE IN LONDON -BABYMETAL WORLD TOUR 2014-」収録内容

BABYMETAL WORLD TOUR 2014 – 2014/7/7 at The Forum

01. BABYMETAL DEATH
02. いいね!
03. ウ・キ・ウ・キ★ミッドナイト
04. 悪夢の輪舞曲
05. おねだり大作戦
06. Catch me if you can
07. 紅月 -アカツキ-
08. 4の歌
09. メギツネ
10. ド・キ・ド・キ☆モーニング
11. ギミチョコ!!
12. ヘドバンギャー!!
13. イジメ、ダメ、ゼッタイ

BABYMETAL BACK TO THE USA/UK TOUR 2014 – 2014/11/8 at O2 Academy Brixton

01. BABYMETAL DEATH
02. いいね!
03 .ウ・キ・ウ・キ★ミッドナイト
04. 悪夢の輪舞曲
05. 4の歌
06. Catch me if you can
07. 紅月 -アカツキ-
08. おねだり大作戦
09. メギツネ
10. ド・キ・ド・キ☆モーニング
11. ギミチョコ!!
12. イジメ、ダメ、ゼッタイ
13. ヘドバンギャー!!
14. Road of Resistance

※DVDは2枚組

BABYMETAL「BABYMETAL」12inchアナログ盤 収録曲

SIDE 1

01. BABYMETAL DEATH
02. メギツネ
03. ギミチョコ!!

SIDE 2

01. いいね!
02. 紅月-アカツキ-
03. ド・キ・ド・キ☆モーニング
04. おねだり大作戦

SIDE 3

01. 4の歌
02. ウ・キ・ウ・キ★ミッドナイト
03. Catch me if you can

SIDE 4

01. 悪夢の輪舞曲
02. ヘドバンギャー!!
03. イジメ、ダメ、ゼッタイ


Deez Nuts have announced a co-headlining tour with Stick To Your Guns to go across the UK and EU. Support will be coming from Trash Talk and Being As An Ocean. Check out the dates below.

TOUR DATES:

24.04.15 (CH) Zuerich - Impericon Fest *
25.04.15 (D) Oberhausen - Impericon Fest *
26.04.15 (DK) Copenhagen - Amager Bio w/Madball
27.04.15 (N) Oslo - Sub Scene
28.04.15 (SE) Stockholm - En Arena
29.04.15 (SE) Gothenburg - Arena 29
30.04.15 (D) Hamburg - Übel Und Gefährlich
02.05.15 (D) Leipzig - Impericon Fest *
03.05.15 (NL) Amsterdam - Impericon Fest *
04.05.15 (UK) Manchester - Impericon Fest *
05.05.15 (UK) Glasgow - Cat House
06.05.15 (UK) London - ULU
07.05.15 (F) Paris - Glazart
08.05.15 (F) Lyon - Warm Audio
09.05.15 (I) Cesena - Vidia Club
10.05.15 (I) Milan - Live Forum
11.05.15 (SLO) Ljubljana Gala Hala
12.05.15 (A) Vienna - Arena
13.05.15 (H) Budapest - A 38
14.05.15 (A) Graz - Explosiv
15.05.15 (D) Wuerzburg Posthalle
16.05.15 (D) Berlin - Astra
17.05.15 (P) Warsaw Hydrozagadka
18.05.15 (CZ) Prague - Lucerna Music Bar
19.05.15 (A) Innsbruck - Weekender
20.05.15 (D) Osnabrueck - Rosenhof
21.05.15 (D) Karlsruhe - Substage
29.05.-31.05.15 (D) Nuerburg - Der Ring - Grüne Hölle *
29.05.-31.05.15 (D) Munichen - Rockavaria *
* without Trash Talk
** without Trash Talk, Being As An Ocean


Californian's Of Euphoria have taken various genres to form their own style of music in which has lead them to release their debut EP and soon to be released debut album. In between those is of course some show playing and future touring in the works. In fact, the entire band got together just to discuss their time as a band and the future ahead of them.


1. Please tell us about the history of your band and its members.

Ryan: I am Ryan Midas and I play guitar.

Ryan: I am Ryan Fig and I play drums.

Sam: I am Sammy Vary I do clean vocals and keyboards.

Bobby: I am Bobby Viscarra and I do the screams in the band as vocalist.

Chris: I am Chris Anguiano and I play guitar.

Angel: I am Angel Romero and I play bass.

Chris: We started in about 2012, kinda had a different idea of what we are now of how we wanted the band to sound. Since then we have been through a lot of band members, reforming last March, since then, recorded and written for our first debut EP "Fall Where It May", played with a lot of amazing bands, it all just came as an idea, growing since.

Sam: Uh yeah, Chris and Fig use to play with other members Of Euphoria,  Chris and Fig having started the band. I use to book them, that's how we met, then decided to play. Angel and I joined at the same time, we had gone through a couple of guitarists, then we found Ryan Midas, it just seemed to be a perfect fit. We then actually had found Bobby online, he came to one of our practices and it seemed to work out, just growing and growing so far.

2. Why did you pick the name that you did for your band?

Chris: That name actually came from my good friend Shane, he was actually one of the guys to help form the band originally. He had a book of poems one of the poems named "Of Euphoria" so that caught my eye and we just started calling ourselves that and it stuck. I know a lot of bands go through band name changes, that was just one of the first band names we went with and we just loved it. Shane has since departed due to school and family.

3. Where is the band based out of and what is your music scene like there? Are there any local bands you could recommend?

Chris: W are based out of Covina in Los Angeles County in Southern California. But we mainly play in Orange County and Los Angeles it's great, pretty populated over here in L.A. From tonight's show it was really outstanding, everybody went crazy, it was outstanding.

4. How would you describe your style? Which bands influenced your music?

Chris: We are kind of all over the place, post-hardcore but our main genre we have been going for is trance-core, some of us have hardcore influences, EDM influences, deathcore stuff. A lot of different stuff like pop rock, very diverse and variety of genres, meshing it altogether. We just make it work and it all falls into place. I think that's why we named our EP "Fall Where It May".

5. What can people expect from this new album you're working on, why should they be interested and check it out when it becomes available?

Chris: Some of the heaviness stuff we have written and some of the poppiest stuff we have written and some of the dancest stuff we have written. I think it's something for everybody. We might even throw a little jazz in there for good measure. It will mesh well together, a lot more easier to come up with these new songs. Our main goal is to write something we ourselves would listen too. If you can't create something someone else can't enjoy then don't expect someone else too either.

6. You guys have been doing a few live performances here and there, do you have any more plans for future shows or touring?

Chris: Yeah we have May 20th for a Battle of the Bands showcase for the Vans Warped Tour it's the second round, we won the first round in first place! We have June 20th in Las Vegas, outside of that we are taking it easy, taking our time not rushing into things. But a lot more touring and shows for the future.

7. How did you and Afflicted Records come together? Are you pleased with what they have been doing for you thus far? What should other labels/zines/promoters know about your band? Why should they be interested in it?

Chris: Right now, Shawn from Afflicted has been treating us very well. We plan on sticking with them for a while, he helps out a lot too. If something else bigger and better comes out we will move forward. We would like to bring Shawn along with us, he's a big part of the family here, if by the time the new album drops nothing happens we will for sure release the album through Afflicted.

8. What plans do you have for the future as a band?

Chris: Right now, definitely, definitely, definitely the album our number one concern right now. After that tons of shows, touring, just get out there, see all of the lovely faces and expand our reach.

9. Where can we listen to your band and where can we buy your stuff?

Chris: Right now you can find our music, on Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/ofeuphoriaofficial, Afflicted Records, YouTube, iTunes, Google Play, Storenvy where you can buy a physical copy - http://ofeuphoria.storenvy.com/.

10. What is it you’d like a listener to remember the most when hearing your music for the first time?

Chris: That basically, ya know any problems a listen has gone through, we have probably gone through the same thing. Life can be tough sometimes, keep your head up because things get better.

Sam: Between the lyrics that Bobby and I write, we take them however you want, either with family problems, relationship problems, image issues, other issues, we all go through bullshit, but you always get through it. Whatever doesn't kill you just makes you a stronger person.

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