“Pressure” by Wage War out NOW!

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One of many bands in the metal-core scene who has continued to evolve their sound is Ocala, Florida based Wage War, from their debut “Blueprints,” which showcases the heaviest aspects of the band’s sound to their sophomore effort “Deadweight,” which incorporated some more melodic elements into their metalcore and post-hardcore influenced sound. However, the band’s third LP, “Pressure,” seems to show the evolution of Wage War’s sound the most, as they include elements from past material while also trying out some new styles.

Wage War really experimented with their sound on this record, with quite a few of these songs showing influences of rock and post-hardcore. “Grave” and “Take The Fight” show off Briton Bond’s singing skills through some very raw and passionate performances, “The Line” brings a lot of energy and a bit of aggression through the instrumentals accompanying a mostly melodic vocal performance, and the closing track “Will We Ever Learn” brings some dynamic instrumentals and powerful vocals through both heavier and more melodic performances.

Although the band did experiment quite a bit with this record, there are still quite a few moments on here that are reminiscent of their older material. “Low” is easily the heaviest out of all the singles, “Ghost” brings a ton of energy through the instrumentation and one of the heaviest breakdowns on the record, and “Fury” is one of the most aggressive songs all around, from the vocals to the instrumentals. Two of the singles (and two of my favorites on the album), “Who I Am” and “Prison,” both show off the band’s post-hardcore and metalcore influences with the balance of heavier and more melodic sections. A few of these songs take influence from the more melodic elements found on the band’s previous record, “Deadweight.” “Me Against Myself” has extremely catchy melodies from start to finish and is one of the most memorable songs on the record, “Forget My Name” is just as memorable and even shows some slight alternative rock and pop punk influences in the equally as catchy guitar work, and “Hurt” is a lot slower compared to a lot of these other songs and is a very raw, emotional ballad with a huge chorus.

While Wage War’s album is certainly a little bit different from their previous two LPs, I enjoyed the amount of variety and experimentation on it, and really like the different sounds and styles they experimented with. It not only shows new sides to the band’s sound, but also shows what they are capable of.

Review courtesy of Megan Langley | Instagram

Vans Warped Tour – 25th Anniversary Review

When Founder Kevin Lyman announced last year that 2019 would be the end of Warped Tour (that we know of), fans of all ages, eras, and locations made the decision to flock to one of the three 25th Anniversary events .Located at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Ohio, Atlantic City Beach in NJ, and the Shoreline Amphitheater in Mountain View, CA. I had the pleasure of traveling all the way from Massachusetts to go to Mountain View for the very last days of Warped and the experience was one for the books.

Even before the doors opened you could feel the energy of the other concert goers. The line wrapped around the venue and everyone was giddy to get inside, look at the inflatable set times one last time and experience the magic that is Warped Tour. Both days were memorable and days that everyone that attended will treasure for life.

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DAY ONE

Bright eyed and bushy tailed fans flooded the gates on July 20 for the first day of Warped. There were five stages, three built stages in the parking lot and the amphitheater stage which was split down the middle to create two mini stages.

Plague Vendor kicked off the day on the Monster Energy Stage, setting the scene for how wild the weekend was going to be. After starting off on the stage for a few minutes, lead singer Brandon Blaine climbed over the barricade and made his way into the middle of the crowd. Blaine had the crowd hyped while the band rocked out on stage. At once point Blaine even picked up a young boy who was having fun in the crowd and carried him around for part of the song.

We The Kings absolutely lit up the main stage, bringing back hits from their early years like Check Yes Juliet and Say You Like Me as well as incorporating new jams such as I Feel Alive. Lead singer Travis took time out of the set to thank his bandmates, the crowd and Kevin Lyman for keeping Warped Tour alive for as long as he did. Hands down it was one of the best sets of the day.

Silent Planet started their set with a member of the non-profit Hope for a Day coming out and speaking to the crowd, which I thought was an amazing thing to do. Lead vocalist Garrett delivered powerful vocals and the entire bands’ stage presence was amazing. The crowd was having an equally fantastic time and at one point Garrett climbed the barricade, holding hands with fans and held the microphone out to an enthusiastic crowd surfer to sing the next line of one of the songs. If you haven’t seen Silent Planet, I highly suggest you do so.

The most memorable and all around fantastic in every way sets were Simple Plan and The Offspring who closed out the day on a high note. Both bands absolutely shredded the stage and put their heart into each and every song they performed. Seeing two iconic bands work the stage of Warped Tour one last time was the best way Warped could have decided to end the night.

DAY TWO

Juliet Simms took over the Black Craft stage and performed her heart out while husband Andy Black stood on the sidelines watching with admiration. Simms showed off her vocal range and flexibility with a great mix of her songs, one of them being the ballad she wrote for her husband. Clad in a blue jean jumpsuit and heels, Simms put on a fantastic set.

Rapper Whitney Peyton exploded on the stage, bright blue hair catching your eye. Peyton was one of the most interactive artists I’ve seen, especially so on the stage. Her lyrics and beats were catchy and her vocals were clean and crisp. At one point, Peyton brought out a pineapple pinata and had the crowd absolutely demolish it in a mosh pit before closing out her set while crowd surfing atop a pool inflatable. Definitely catch Whitney Peyton at one of her shows if you get the chance!

The fabulous four piece rock group Doll Skin, compiled of four badass females, was incredibly high energy. Each member captivated the crowd in their own way, especially lead singer Sydney who’s sharp vocals and ever changing expressions made the set even more fun to watch. I had the honor of meeting them after their set and the ladies of Doll Skin are without a doubt some of the sweetest and most down to earth people I’ve met.

The most thrilling set of the day goes to Yungblud who exploded on the stage in a black silk dress along with his signature pink socks. Never once during the set did the energy level die down, either by the crowd or by the man himself. Throwing out a couple of provocative sensual moves here and there, including thrusting against his guitar, Yungblud performed hit after hit. The crowd shocker was when rapper Machine Gun Kelly joined him onstage as a special surprise guest to perform their song “I Think I’m Okay.” The pair got the crowd more hyped than I thought was possible and crowd surfed over to the Monster Energy viewing platform, making it the most memorable “official” set.

Though not officially a set, the most special part of the night took place at the very end of the day when band NOFX ended up running late and fellow artists flocked to the stage to put on an impromptu performance of some of NOFX’s songs. Among the artists who kept the crowd entertained while waiting for the band to arrive were Sum 41, John Feldmann of Gold Finger, Hyro the Hero and Yungblud, along with numerous other artists who felt like joining the party. Watching the artists perform together to really showed how Warped Tour brought together so many people of different backgrounds to one common place for one common passion–music. Spontaneity like what the artists did to fill the time is something that I, along with fellow Warped Tour goers will miss dearly and I’m keeping my fingers crossed that one day they’ll surprise us with another Warped Tour event.

>>>>ALL OUR WARPED CONTENT <<<<

Review courtesy of Linette Wainwright | Twitter & Instagram  

** Click through links will bring you directly to photo-sets of artists mentioned above. **

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Interview w/ Shiragirl

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Artwork by : Sophia Bonafide

The Camera Affect Promotions had the pleasure of sitting down with New York native Shiragirl before her set during Vans Warped Tour to discuss everything from the creation of her own stage to her EP ‘Brooklyn Goes Hollywood’ to playing with Joan Jett. If you want to find out more about what Shiragirl had to say, keep reading below:

What was your reaction when you found out that this was going to be the last year of Warped?

I was super sad. I actually found out in 2017 that 2018 was going to be the last full cross-country run. I was bummed, it definitely felt like the end of an era.

What was your reaction when you were asked to come and play?

I was so happy and so excited and just honored to be included. Yeah, really happy.

So, I know that the Shiragirl Stage came about in a really unique way, correct me if I’m wrong. You pretty much asked Kevin (Lyman) if he could include more female bands on the lineup and he said maybe next year and you just did it anyways. 

Yep that’s exactly it!

What was that like knowing you had kind of “defied” him and you ended up with your own stage?

So how it happened was I was on the tour the previous year and I had noticed there were no female musicians and I said “hey can we come back and host some girl bands maybe in the Girls Garage Tent and he said “great idea, maybe next year.” We just decided lets do it anyway. We drove into the gates and set up and we had a little punk-rock set up. We just thought a year seemed so far away when you’re a kid, you know, and we thought why not and he walked up and we kind of held our breath because we didn’t know if we were going to get kicked out or what not and he just looked around and said “alright Shira, so you’re on for the whole tour” and it was both kind of an invite and almost a challenge. It felt really good to be able to then come back the next year and we were invited back to do an official stage, which Kevin named the Shiragirl Stage and host all those bands including Paramore on their first ever tour.

That’s wild. I heard that and was like “she’s a badass.”

Aww thank you!

 So as a female in a predominantly male dominated scene, did you find that you had to prove yourself when you played your first Warped Tour? Do you find that you still have to prove yourself now?

Oh absolutely, one hundred percent. We definitely had to prove ourselves. In a male dominated space women definitely have to work twice as hard to get the respect a man gets and that’s just how it is, and when we first started out there were bets against us finishing the tour. We were not taken seriously. People would say “this area back here is only for the bands” and we would say “we are the band” you know? Even now there’s a lot more exposure and representation but it’s still not equal and I feel like there’s this misconception that we’re all equal now but if you look at the numbers it’s just not true.

Did they come to respect you more overtime or was there something that you did that made them respect you?

I think just working really hard absolutely, building relationships on the tour and also just kicking ass, playing our instruments well, rehearsing, taking our craft seriously, that’s important too, putting the hours in and being good at what we do.

 Makes perfect sense. I know you’ve been called the Punk-Rock Madonna, where did that name come from?

It’s so funny, actually this girl Rose who is in a band called Anti Hero who played our stage in Canada, she’s from Toronto, she first said that to me and it kind of just stuck with our team. I think that our manager put it into a press release or a bio that made its way to Billboard and then Billboard kind of coined it last year when they premiered our first single. After Billboard said it I thought “oh my gosh, it’s official,” and I love it. Madonna is a huge influence of mine so it’s a compliment.

Your EP Brooklyn Goes Hollywood showed the juxtaposition between Hollywood and New York where you’re from. Did the title come before the sound of the album or did the sound of the album influence the title? 

That’s a good question. I think it was a big theme because our whole band is from New York, at least my drummer and bassist, the three of us really co-wrote that record and we wanted to achieve this fusion of a sound that was like the dancy pop fun aspect meets this harder punk-rock sound. I actually wanted to write a song called Brooklyn Goes Hollywood, I’ve had that in my mind forever. As songwriters, you often think of the song title before you think of the song sometimes and so it never became a song but then when we were talking about the album name I just thought this is like, the perfect way to describe the duality of the record.

What was it like having Joan Jett play your stage?

That was a dream come true! So Joan was on the tour, she used to bike over to the side of our stage and watch the girl bands and she actually gave me a pep talk because about halfway through the tour half my band quit, first my drummer then my guitarist quit. I was super upset, we were hosting all these bands, and she knocked on my RV door, sat on the couch next to me, looked me in the eye and said “you’re doing a good thing and you have to keep going.” She said “girls like that make girls like us look bad and you’ve got to keep going” and I said “okay I’ve got to keep going because Joan Jett told me to.” The last day of that tour was when it had kind of been discussed that she would do a special appearance with her manager and it was Cleveland, Ohio and they said “Joan wants you to sing and she’s going to play guitar and do backup” and it was crazy. Right before we went on we were rehearsing on the side of the stage it felt like I was in the Runaways. It was really a dream and I was so honored, just recently they put a Warped Tour exhibit in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and I got included and in it is our set list from that day and a photo of us performing with Joan Jett next to her bra and her setlist and my shirt so it’s really cool. What an honor. This was before Instagram and stuff so someone had captured a video of it on Youtube somewhere but I wish I had gotten more of my personal footage from it, from that moment, but nothing can replace that memory. Just looking out and seeing Kevin Lyman in the crowd.

I bet. Did you ever think you would get from where you started to playing on the same stage as Joan Jett singing one of her songs as the main vocalist?

It was an honor. We did actually open up for her band earlier that year and I just have to say it’s a great example of how Warped Tour has opened up so many doors for up and coming artist because if it weren’t for Warped Tour I never would have met her because she was playing the tour and we got introduced. So yeah, huge honor and definitely inspires me to keep going.

What has been your best or craziest memory?

Oh my gosh, there’s so many but one that comes to mind is that I got to perform Lori Meyers with NOFX and that was super cool. Any time you’re on the main stage the crowd is so big and the energy is amazing and I also got to perform with The Transplants and that was super cool. Anytime you get to do a special guest performance like that is amazing.

Last question. When they announced that Warped Tour was coming to an end I noticed a couple pop up tours start happening and they started traveling the country. Do you think there’s ever going to be anything on the Warped Tour scale again or do you think Warped Tour is kind of the “Mecca” of everything. 

Great question. Personally I think there’s only one Kevin Lyman and Warped Tour is one of a kind and I don’t think there will be another Warped Tour. I know Kevin hopes to see someone else pick up the torch and do what he did but you just can’t duplicate it. I do hope to see other tours, like Sad Summer tour and Disrupt and I would love to play any of those and be part of it but nothing is ever going to be like Warped Tour. The way that Kevin really brought together all these baby bands and big bands in one plane and made them feel like a family with the after parties and barbecues, his involvement in non-profit organizations, making sure the tour recycled, getting involved with charity organizations, such as FEND, you don’t see that a lot in the music industry. He’s a humanitarian and a lot of people in the music industry are more about profit or whatever it is, fame, and he’s really just a great person. While I hope there will be another Warped Tour, I think it really is one of a kind. That being said.  Kevin is advising me, I’m actually working on starting a tour of my own, kind of based on a similar mission we had with the Shiragirl Stage to promote women in music and platform for female artists. It’s going to be called Gritty in Pink and it’s going to start off as an event series, monthly in LA and eventually we’re hoping to build a whole tour off of that.

 I love that, I’m definitely coming back just for that!

Yay!

Keep up with Shiragirl on Twitter| Facebook | Instagram

Show some love to the graphic designer Sophia

Interview courtesy of Linette Wainwright | Twitter & Instagram  

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What happened to Travie McCoy ?

Travie McCoy – Former member of Gym Class Heroes, who also battled addiction, is now focusing on his solo career; still making music and just performed at Vans Warped Tour. I guess you could say he went back to his teenage pop-punk roots by playing in Mountain view, CA on the final show of Vans Warped Tour, everyone has a home at Warped, and Linette’s photos show just that below. Remember, recovery is possible – Cristine

Photos courtesy of Linette

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Emo Nite LA Presents Emo Nite @ Webster Hall

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Tickets | Event Page

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The Camera Affect’s Top 13 Bands you MUST see at Vans Warped Tour 2019 | THIS WEEKEND in Atlantic City, NJ – July 20+21st in Mountain View, CA

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Well, here’s the year that any pop-punk kid has been dreading for the last 25 years- the very end of Vans Warped Tour. For a quarter of a century VWT has been a haven and a ‘punk rock summer camp’ for “outcasts,” “misfits” and those who were seen as “too different.” From sky rocketing the careers of bands like All Time Low and Neck Deep to giving back to the community in the form of blood drives and canned goods collections, VWT has been a quintessential part of life not only for the bands and the behind the scenes crew but for the fans as well.

With VWT kicking off their anniversary events in Cleveland, Ohio at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, a sold out and super successful start to the summer, the following stops span over two weekends, June 29th and 30th in Atlantic City, New Jersey and July 20th and 21st in Mountain View, California. With all of our Warped-Tourian knowledge and our inner scene teens sobbing over the end of era, we’ve created a list of the top 13 bands you must see this summer.

 

1. Dance Gavin Dance

 

Hailing from Sacramento, California rock band Dance Gavin Dance never fail to put on a killer show. First appearing in 2009 and doing four runs on the tour the group have performed their hits such as “We Own the Night” off their 2015 album Instant Gratification and “Betrayed By the Game” off 2016s Mothership. With the release of Artificial Selection just last year, one of their best albums in my opinion, you definitely won’t want to miss “Suspended In This Disaster” or “The Rattler” live (really crossing my fingers that they play them.)

 

Inspire The Liars- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z-aQrBZ4Duw

 

  1. August Burns Red

Pennsylvania metal-core band August Burns Red has been delivering hit after hit since the bands creation in 2003. Completing 7 summers on the Vans Warped Tour the band have given us consistent powerful vocals, spine tingling guitar riffs and have expressed nothing but gratitude and love towards their fans. With the band hitting the stage for one final VWT show fans are hoping for a mix of hits such as 2011s “Carpe Diem,” 2015s “Separating the Seas” and 2017s “King of Sorrow.”

 

The Frost- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jKlP2rKtAGQ

 

  1.  Good Charlotte

Maryland based rock band Good Charlotte, formed in 1995 by brothers Joel and Benji Madden, has been giving us all of our rock medicine for years on end. With hits like “The Anthem” and “Lifestyles of the Rich & Famous” both off the 2002 album The Young and the Hopeless we’re definitely in for a treat and with tracks pulled from the 2018 record Generation Rx fans will most certainly get the perfect mix of old and new.

Lifestyles of the Rich & Famous- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y-jC3H_8Dk4

 

  1. Less Than Jake

Starting in 1997 the Floridian ska-punk band has played VWT a mind blowing 13 times. Getting to experience tracks such as “The Rest of My Life” and “Sunstroke” from a band that helped create and shape Warped Tours’ legacy is definitely something that everyone should take advantage of. Even if you can’t stay for their full set, and trust me you’ll be disappointed if you don’t, make sure to drop by and catch at least one song from the energetic and crowd thrilling band.

 

The Science of Selling Yourself Short- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=krXG307d4k8

 

  1. Memphis May Fire

Playing Vans Warped Tour for their fifth time, Texas metalcore band Memphis May Fire are coming to light up the stage once again. Memphis May Fire always delivers and never fails to have a wave of crowd surfers and mosh pits rocking out to hits such as “Sleepless Nights” and “The Enemy.” If you’ve never moshed before, I highly suggest taking the gloves off and experiencing your first mosh pit to a Memphis May Fire song.

 

Heavy Is the Weight- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wUfkqYWxLjk

 

  1. Set It Off

Florida pop-punk band Set It Off is a fairly new band to the scene but their fan base has been growing rapidly since their debut at VWT in 2013. The band signed to Fearless Records in 2018 and released their fourth album Midnight in February of this year. Fans can most likely expect a range of tracks from over the years (really hoping “I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead” makes it onto the setlist) but regardless of which songs they play, a Set It Off performance is something you don’t want to miss.

 

Why Worry- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sesKiKYQn84

 

  1. Silverstein

Rock band Silverstein, hailing from Ontario has played VWT 10 times, starting back in 2004. With a mix of rock, post-hardcore, metal core and indie-rock vibes the versatile band is one that absolutely is a can’t miss. Whether it be their heavier songs like “Live To Kill” off of the 2011 album Rescue or the more pop-punk sounding “The Afterglow” off of 2017s Dead Reflection there’s no denying that Silverstein, while continuing to bring in the sounds of their roots, is one of the most adaptable and ever changing bands in the scene.

 

Ghost- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SqDR4TW2vfs

 

  1. Sleeping With Sirens

Alternative rock band Sleeping With Sirens from Florida emerged on the scene in 2009, playing their first Warped Tour in 2012 and going on to play another 5 years after that. With five incredibly successful albums and a sixth one in the making Sleeping With Sirens has no shortage of hits ranging from “If I’m James Dean, You’re Audrey Hepburn” and “If You Can’t Hang” to “We Like It Loud” and “Empire to Ashes.” If you’re in the mood for an engaged and incredibly hyped up crowd singing back the lyrics to an equally hyped up band, Sleeping With Sirens is a band you’re not going to want to miss.

 

If You Can’t Hang- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_UwWYtLWEZg

 

  1. The Used

If there’s a band that radiates scene energy the most, it’s definitely Utah’s own The Used. Having played VWT 8 times, the first being in 2002 the band has become one that everyone knows at least one song to, even if you don’t know the name of the band. The post-hardcore/alternative rock band has enticed fans with tracks like “Pretty Handsome Awkward” and “Rise Up Lights,” and the mix of old school and new school that this band is going to bring to the stage is going to result in a show for the books.

 

All That I’ve Got- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tgB_JwcuPg0

 

  1. Sum 41

Another Ontario band that’s played VWT 10 times is Sum 41, the first time being in 2000. With six albums previously released holding two of their most popular songs “In Too Deep” and “Fat Lip,” the band is set to drop their seventh album Order in Decline on July 19, just one day before they’re set to play Warped Tour. The release of the new album is bound to get fans hyped up and eager to learn the words to the newest songs so they can belt them out along with the guys giving it their all on stage.

 

In Too Deep- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=emGri7i8Y2Y

 

  1. Yungblud

England’s Dominic Harrison, known to his fans as Yungblud is set to make 2019 his second consecutive year on the VWT. The energy he exudes on stage and the sheer poetry of his lyrics makes it hard not to love Yungblud and want to listen to his songs on repeat. His debut album 21st Century Liability which was dropped last year features tracks such as “Medication,” “Psychotic Kids” and “Polygraph Eyes” and recently he released a successful collaboration with artists Halsey and Travis Barker titled “11 Minutes.” If there’s one artist you want to keep your eye on, it’s Yungblud.

 

Medication- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rM1shsSRqB8

 

  1. We The Kings

This pop-punk Floridan band has done nothing but continue to grow their fanbase from their debut in 2005 to their first VWT in 2008 up to now. With eight Warped Tour summers under their belt the band has had no shortage of catchy hits going back from “Check Yes Juliet” on their self-titled album released in 2007 to 2013s “I Feel Alive.” We The Kings never fails to put on a fantastic show and you can genuinely see and feel the love that they have for their music and their fans.

 

Check Yes, Juliet- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5CUyWJ7UINM

 

  1. Simple Plan

Rounding out our list is Montreal originated pop-punk powerhouses Simple Plan. Playing VWT first in 1999 and going on to take on to dedicate an additional 12 summers. Bangers like “Addicted” and “I’m Just a Kid” were, and still are, staples in every scene kids music rolodex. The vibes, riffs and vocals that Simple Plan gives off for every performance are insane and time and time again they remain incredibly humble and thankful for their fans. There’s no doubt in my mind that Simple Plan was one of the best choices to add to the end of an era and if you miss Simple Plan’s set, you’re missing out entirely.

Addicted- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qvpNa5O-0-8

Article courtesy of Linette Ray

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Keeping NEPA Strange an Interview w/ Josh Balz by Emily Sulkowski

 

Being odd is typical for artists. It’s what makes us all unique. Josh Balz took the idea of odd and amplified it. Owner of the Strange and Unusual Oddities Parlor in Kingston and Philadelphia, PA, Josh has certainly added a little gem to the often dreary North East, PA. I sat down with him to talk about how life has been after his transition from being in a touring band to running his store full time.

I started by asking if the transition from touring to being grounded back in PA was strange?

“ I love the area, I grew up here and always lived here.” He says.

He certainly thought the transition was strange, since the hectic touring life took a lot out of a person, “ I never felt busy, I felt like I wasn’t doing enough, since I was only running the store, not doing both.” He said while talking about reconfiguring his life after leaving his band.

I asked about his music, Strange Kids, which he’s released two singles under, and more importantly if he was releasing more music, “ I’d like to, it’s more of a hobby right now.” Genre wise, Strange Kids and Motionless in White are very different. Josh said, “ It’s all based on my emotions, what I’m feeling at the time.”
In NEPA, Josh is somewhat of a hometown hero. I asked him if support from local fans had ever changed after coming home. “ I think there’s more support now. The store and Motionless have the same vibe. It goes hand in hand.” His employees at the store said his fair share of fans still come in, excited to meet him. Fans and locals alike still love the shop, enjoying how different it is among the repetitiveness the Valley seems to see often.

Owning a store like this comes from a love for weird things. “ I always enjoyed them (oddities). The stuff comes from all over. A lot of vintage taxidermy” He said when I asked how he finds his unique items, “ It’s definitely a process.”

In a town full of pizza shops, I wondered how a shop selling human bones and spell books does so well, “ I wanted to do something different here,” Josh said when I asked what inspired him, “ Everyone told me I was going to fail.”

Balz said that the shop does very well, being able to sell such unique, incredible items and still stay afloat, where in a huge city it would be difficult. Having the backing he did, it’s no surprise the shop is well loved and received. While wrapping things up, I asked him how it feels to know his music and his parlor help so many people. Being weird isn’t always easy, and he’s always made people like him feel a little less like outsiders. I asked if he ever wanted to have that effect on people. “ Always. I’ve always been a very supportive person. I love helping other people.”

Josh has always encouraged people to be themselves, and be interested in unique things. He’s very proud of who he is, and everything he’s built. “ I hope people come in, to see the shop and try the cafe.”

The Strange and Unusual Oddities Parlor sits at 467 Wyoming Avenue in Kingston, Pennsylvania. Now boasting a Harry Potter themed cafe called Steamy Hallows, serving cookies, Butter Brew coffee and hot chocolate covered in glitter, The Strange and Unusual is a little gem in a town that people seem to forget. Give the shop a visit, buy a skull or two with your coffee, and never be afraid to be a little weird.

Interview courtesy of Emily Sulkowski  | SHOP NOW :  The Strange and Unusual

Follow Josh Balz here