SOME STUFFS: Howlin Rain to brave the winter roads

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Just because Howlin Rain is now essentially a solo project doesn’t mean he can’t round up some new friends and head out on tour. That is exactly what Ethan Miller will be doing next year when he and said friends will gather as Howlin Rain and brave the road in support of their Mansion Songs album due out January 27th. This is where they’re scheduled to be, primarily west coast dates for the time being:

February 25, 2015… Arcata, CA (Humbrews)
February 26, 2015… Portland, OR (Mississippi Studios)
February 27, 2015… Seattle, WA (Tractor Tavern)
February 28, 2015… Vancouver, BC (The Hindenburg)
March 1, 2015… Bellingham, WA (Shakedown)
March 3, 2015… Boise, ID (Neurolux)
March 4, 2015… Salt Lake City, UT (Kilby Court)
March 5, 2015… Las Vegas, NV (The Bunkhouse)
March 6, 2015… Flagstaff, AZ (The Orpheum)
March 7, 2015… Santa Ana, CA (Constellation Room)
March 10, 2015… San Diego, CA (The Casbah)
March 11, 2015… Los Angeles, CA (The Echo)
March 12, 2015… Santa Cruz, CA (Crepe Place)
March 13, 2015… Oakland, CA (Leo’s)
March 14, 2015… Mill Valley, CA (Sweetwater)

Until then, check out a song from the album to come, a track called “Wild Bush”, which may be about shrubbery, good smokes, or perhaps it’s vaginal.

SOME STUFFS: Howlin Rain change into a sole project for new album

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There was a time when Howlin Rain was the ID card for a fantastic band out of San Francisco, releasing a number of great albums that will hold up in the years to come. Then something happened. Vocalist Ethan Miller found himself without band members and with that, no record label to call home. Miller still had a passion to make music and rather than risk putting everything to rest, he decided to write a new set of music. That new set of music became a new album, and it’s credited as being Howlin Rain but now you’ll be able to hear things in an all new light, from an all new perspective. The album, to be released on January 27, 2015, is called Mansion Songs (Easy Sound) and will show Miller as someone going through much more than just the motions and emotions, but what he was able to bring forth to the recording studio is a set of songs that are sure to make Howlin Rain fans excited and perhaps bring a new set of listeners to his talents. Check out “Big Red Moon” and then wait a few more months before the new full length surfaces.

SOME STUFFS: Howlin Rain to release first live album

Photo by Tyler Green
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The good folks of Howlin Rain will be doing something they’ve never done before: they’re about to release a live album. Entitled Live Rain (Silver Current), it is a 9-track album that will be released on vinyl, CD, cassette, and of course digital. Here is the official track listing:

Side 1
Phantom In The Valley (8:45)
Self Made Man (11:04)

Side 2
Can’t Satisfy Me Now (8:45)
Beneath Wild Wings (4:19)
Lord Have Mercy (7:50)

Side 3
Hung Out In The Rain (6:07)
Calling Lightning Pt. 2 (8:16)
Dancers At The End Of Time (5:53)

Side 4
Roll On The Rusted Days (7:49)

Right now, you can have a listen to “Self Made Man” from the album by pressing the play button below.

While their covers of Howlin’ Wolf’s “Killing Floor” and “Evil” are not on the album, you can get a great feel for what they are like as a live band with the video below.

Live Rain will be released on April 29th. The UK and Europe will find the album released on the Agitated label, and they’ll get it a day earlier than us. On top of this, the band are also hard at work on a new studio album to be released later in 2014.

REVIEW: Howlin Rain’s “The Russian Wilds”

Photobucket The last time I heard from Howlin Rain, they ended up creating one of my favorite albums that year. They have done it again with the incredible The Russian Wilds (american recordings), and for fans of rock’n’roll done up Southern style with a richness in blues, and incredible vibe that is social and subtly sensual, you will be eating this up to the neck.

The first band I thought of when I heard of when I heard the opening track, “Self Made Man”, was The Black Crowes, where it feels like they’ve bombarded the stage after a long void, and they’ll dig deep and unveil the kind of emotion and perceived warmth that will get fans to them and keep them there. Then you have “Strange Thunder” that might make people think of ballads by The Rolling Stones, if not Extreme (and that’s said without hate). It has “power ballad” status, but this songs a bit more genuine and not as a tool for mass acceptance. One might even think of the pleasantries of Lenny Kravitz‘s Mama Said album, especially the “Fields Of Love” song that opened his album.

While I hate to use a term like “classic rock”, since it represents a style of music I grew up listening to so I still view it as “my music” and not something of the past, I’ll say this. If you are a fan of the music of days gone by, and you remember those tracks on albums where the first four minutes is just a precursor for the good stuff, you’ll find that on The Russian Wilds, as five of the songs are over six minutes each, with two going over eight, including the aforementoned “Self Made Man” and the multi-dimensional “Strange Thunder”.

It’s human music made by actual people, and you’re probably thinking “is there anything else?” It’s a style of music that I hold close to my heart, with powerful arrangements and instrumentations, vocals and harmonies that’ll make you want to relate and sing along to, and one you know you’ll be listening to 20 years down the line, or perhaps one you hope you’ll give to your kids or grandchildren. It would be too easy to call this an “instant classic”, since the term is used a lot in hip-hop circles as a way to say “I like and love this now, nothing else matters”. However, I feel that in 10 to 20 years, the music created here by Howlin Rain will only then begin to mature with age, and its brilliance will be realized. Don’t wait, feel it now.

(The Russian Wilds will be released on February 14th. You can hear it in full by clicking to

SOME STUFFS: Howlin Rain offer their audio love, complimented with shows to meet you one on one

Four years ago I became a fan of the San Francisco band Howlin Rain, enough to make their album Magnificent Fiend one of my favorites of 2008.

They’re about to release a new one called The Russian Wilds, and it will be released on Valentine’s Day. A week before its release, they will start on a two month tour beginning in New York City before making their way to this year’s South By Southwest (SXSW).

February 7 Mercury Lounge, NYC, NY **
February 8 Brooklyn Bowl, Brooklyn, NY **
February 9 Johnny Brendas, Philadelphia, PA **
February 10 Red Palace, Washington DC **
February 11 Cafe Nine, New Haven, CT **
February 14 Detroit Bar, Costa Mesa, CA
February 15 Casbah, San Diego, CA
February 16 Echo, Los Angeles, CA
February 17 Soho, Santa Barbara, CA
February 18 Independent, San Francisco, CA (Hometown Album Release Show)
February 19 Audie’s Olympic, Fresno, CA
February 21 Humboldt Brews, Arcata, CA *
February 23 Biltmore, Vancouver, BC
February 24 Sunset Tavern, Seattle, WA
February 25 Doug Fir, Portland, OR

* w/ Radio Moscow
** w/ Soldiers of Fortune

March 6 Cellar Door, Visalia, CA ***
March 7 SLO Brew, San Luis Obispo, CA
March 8 Fingerprints, Long Beach, CA
March 9 Harlow’s, Sacramento, CA
March 10 St. James Infirmary, Reno, NV
March 11 Crystal Bay Casino, Tahoe +
March 12 Urban Lounge, Salt Lake City, UT
March 13 Larimer Lounge, Denver, CO
March 15 SXSW2012, Austin, TX
March 16 SXSW2012, Austin, TX
March 17 SXSW2012, Austin, TX

* w/ Radio Moscow
** w/ Soldiers of Fortune
*** w/ Blitzen Trapper
* Umphrey’s McGee After Party

You’re now able to hear what will be the first single from the album, a song called “Phanton In The Valley” and as you can see, this one clocks in at a little over seven minutes but it’s an incredible seven minutes. Now you’ll only have four weeks before the album is released in full. Phantom In The Valley by howlinrain