New Jersey Stage
New Jersey Stage on social media

Did you know NJ Stage offers FREE Event Listings? Nearly 100,000 listings were viewed in January. Be sure to add your events to our calendar and get your shows noticed!

Makin Waves with Erotic Novels
& Weekend Quality: Busy Being Bad-Ass

originally published: 11/28/2018

Makin Waves with Erotic Novels & 'Weekend Quality'

The New Brunswick punk band Erotic Novels are from right to left Shannon Perez, Chris Tull and formerly Chris Pierce. Perez and Tull from Erotic Novels and the indie/punk podcast “Weekend Quality” chat about both influential entities.  PHOTO BY COOLDAD MUSIC

 Influential punk rockers Shannon Perez and Chris Tull of the band Erotic Novels and the podcast “Weekend Quality” are busy AF, but, fortunately, they enjoy spending a lot of time together, which is what the two projects require. Veterans of such kick-ass bands as Don Juan Destroyer, Side Bitch and The Hellstroms, the pair came together via their mutual friend and now sometime drummer Chris Pierce at his Volume IV studio in New Brunswick. There they made their debut full-length and vinyl outing, “There Is No Language in Our Love,” released at the end of the summer by Lansing, Mich.-based GTG Records, also home of Trenton-based Honah Lee. 

Like always, Erotic Novels have some great gigs coming up, including Dec. 7 at Cat Farm in New Brunswick with Good Looking Friends, Erotic Novels, Kissies and Ultra Deluxe; Dec. 14, Trenton Punk Rock Flea Market Holiday Show at Mill Hill Basement with Shades Apart, Lost in Society and Crossed Keys; Jan. 18 in their debut at Asbury Park Yacht Club for the Light of Day Festival with Molly Rhythm, Little Vicious and Rachel Ana Dobken, and Jan. 19 when “Weekend Quality” presents its first-ever show at Century in Philadelphia, which also will feature SOLD and Poppy.

In the following all-too-brief chat, the couple share their love of punk rock, their new album, their podcast and the DIY scene. Enjoy!

Question: What bands were each of you in before coming together with Erotic Novels?
 I was in a band called Don Juan Destroyer, then I Hope You Die, Strange Things Done in the Midnight Sun, Kannon, and Side Bitch.

Chris: The main band I was in here on the East Coast was the Hellstroms.


Q: Had either of you done a previous media project before ‘Weekend Quality?’

Chris: We've both done zines. I started making zines in seventh grade of the comics that I wrote and drew.


Q: How did the two of you meet, how did that lead to forming Erotic Novels and ‘Weekend Quality,’ and which came first, the band or the podcast?

Chris: The podcast came first. I was already doing it when I met Shannon, but it didn't take off until we started working together on it.

Shannon: We met at Volume IV when Chris was practicing with Chris Pierce to do a Halloween cover set.

Chris: We started hanging out after that, but didn't start the band until about a year later.


Q: What do you love most about producing ‘Weekend Quality,’ as well as its live shows, and why?

Chris: I like having a fire under my ass to always seek out new music and new bands. It keeps me on top of things, and I always have something fresh and exciting to listen to. 

The good thing about doing the live shows is enjoying the music. Beyond that, it is a real pain to put them together.

Q: What do you love most about ‘There Is No Language in Our Love’ and why?
 It's the first album I've ever put out that got pressed to vinyl, so it’s exciting to do something in a new medium; one that I respect and love. It’s also the first time either of us have worked with a label instead of doing it DIY.

Chris: It’s definitely the best think I've ever had a hand in making. I think that it’s a great representation of where we both were at that time as a band and as people, which is the whole idea of making art, for me.


Q: What did you like most about working on the LP with Chris Pierce at Volume IV and why?

Shannon: Chris had a lot of pedal options and we got to record in analog, which is the way we both prefer to work.

Chris: And Chris is a whiz at getting good sounds very quickly and making the recording environment fun and stress-free.


Q: Besides making the album there, why is Volume IV important to Erotic Novels and ‘Weekend Quality?’

Shannon: When we lost our spot at the Court Tavern, Volume IV was there to help us host our remaining shows. It's also where our practice space is.


Q: How did you hook up with GTG Records and how has it been working with them so far?

Chris: I've known Tommy, The Plurals, and some of the other GTG people for a while. We played together a lot back in the Hellstroms days.

Shannon: And then Erotic Novels played with The Plurals in a basement in New Brunswick. Tommy from GTG is in that band and decided that he wanted to put out our record.

Q: So it’s been a great year for Erotic Novels, as well as ‘Weekend Quality,’ with an LP on an internationally respected label, a slew of great shows, many of which Weekend Quality produced, and another year of great podcasts. Besides releasing the album and producing the podcast each week, what has been the greatest accomplishment for the band and the show this year and why?
 The highlight of my year was playing with Weston, which features James Alex from Beach Slang. They're a band that I used to see when I was a teenager in New Brunswick, and it was cool to be able to open for them. And working with Aftermath Collective has been really rewarding.

Chris: I think we got some cool interviews on the air this year, including Miguel Chen from Teenage Bottlerocket, and did some great live episodes, including one with Hospital Job, one of my favorite bands. But the biggest thrill of the year, for me, was Chris Thacker of Sounds Rad inviting us to be a part of the Dr. Frank, Even In Blackouts, Mikey Erg tour. We both love the Mr. T Experience, and it was a huge deal to share a stage with Frank. He'll forever be one of my songwriting heroes.

Makin Waves with Erotic Novels & 'Weekend Quality' 

Shannon Perez and Chris Tull had a sweet year with their New Brunswick punk band, Erotic Novels; their podcast, “Weekend Quality” at and its many shows. PHOTO BY CAITY MACLEOD


Q: As great as the year has been for the band and the podcast, it has not been such a great year for the New Brunswick music scene with the closing of the Court Tavern, the lack of a consistent weekend venue within the city, and a decline in the band and show output of the basement scene. Shannon, you’ve been involved in the New Brunswick scene for a long time in several great bands. What do you think of the current state of the scene, what do you think has caused its decline and can anything make the scene strong again?

Shannon: I feel that if you think there’s a decline in bands, you might be unaware of the underground DIY scene that’s alive and thriving in basements and house shows and DIY spaces. Even though there is a lack of over-21 venues and bars doesn't mean there’s a lack of shows. You just have to dig a little deeper to find out where those are. It's not mainstream. It's a DIY subculture.


Q: Chris, you’re from the Philly scene, which, for my money, is the best scene in the Mid-Atlantic if not the Northeast. Will Erotic Novels and Weekend Quality relocate there, and if not, why is it worthwhile to remain based in New Brunswick?

Chris: We love New Brunswick. There’s no reason to relocate. But I agree that the Philly scene is great. Waxahatchee made one of the best albums in recent memory. We mentioned Beach Slang before, and they’re doing their thing. Teenage Bigfoot, Goddamnit, SOLD, Ramona, the Barren Marys, Poppy... Great scene, and we do play there and love it, but we’re not leaving New Brunswick.

Q: You have some great shows coming up, including Dec. 7 at Cat Farm, which I believe is a basement show; Dec. 14 at the Trenton Punk Rock Flea Market Holiday Party with Shades Apart and Lost in Society, and Jan. 18, your debut at Asbury Park Yacht Club for Light of Day with Molly Rhythm, Little Vicious and Rachel Ana Dobken. Is there anything you’d like to share about those shows and anything else you have going on and coming up?
 Speaking of Philly, we’re making a weekend of it and playing with SOLD and Poppy at Century on Jan. 19.

Chris: It’s the first time Weekend Quality has put on a show at Century. It's a great space, and everyone who likes that great Philly scene should check it out.


Q: Are there any specials or other special events that Weekend Quality has coming up?

Chris: We have the fourth annual pair of Weekend Quality Year-End Specials coming up, which is the big two-part extravaganza where we count down our top 10 albums of the year, play our favorite songs, and talk to our friends, fellow band people and see what they got up to and enjoyed in the past year. Subscribe to the Weekend Quality podcast and you'll see that around the last two weeks of December.


Q: Is there anything I didn’t ask on which you would like to comment?

Shannon: We have a batch of new songs, and we’re working with a new label to record one of them for a comp.

Chris: Yes! The future is bright! People will go nuts when they hear what this comp is going to be like. And I love our new songs, and I can't wait for people to hear some of them at our upcoming gigs.

Bob Makin is the reporter for and a former managing editor of The Aquarian Weekly, which launched this column in 1988. Contact him at And like Makin Waves at

For more by this author, click here

Benefit Concert For Dina's Dwellings In New Brunswick On Friday
(NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ) -- Join the cast of The Vagina Monologues and some special guests for Ladies’ Night, a benefit concert of fun and empowering songs celebrating and uplifting women. Co-directed by Mariella Klinger and Dave Seamon and produced by coLAB Arts, the concert takes place at First Reformed Church of New Brunswick for Dina's Dwellings on December 14 at 7:30pm.  It features a wide selection of pop songs and musical theatre selections from your favorite Broadway musicals will be performed along with a preview of an original musical by Dave Seamon and Molly Horan entitled A Universe Without Him. 
Audible and NJPAC Present "Jazz in the Key of Ellison"
(NEWARK, NJ) -- The New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC) and Audible have announced the first three national performance dates of “Jazz in the Key of Ellison,” celebrating the musical world of the esteemed African-American novelist, critic and scholar Ralph Ellison and his remarkable collection of jazz recordings.
Centenary Stage Presents Michael Davis and the New Wonders
(HACKETTSTOWN, NJ) -- Centenary Stage Company’s annual January Thaw Music Festival returns to the Lackland Performing Arts Center featuring three musical guest artists throughout the month of January. The series launches on Saturday, January 12, 2019 at 8:00pm in the Lackland Performing Arts Center with Michael Davis and the New Wonders.
Billy Joel to Celebrate 70th Birthday at MSG
(NEW YORK, NY) -- The Madison Square Garden Company announced that the 64th consecutive show by legendary musician and MSG franchise, Billy Joel, on Thursday, May 9, 2019 takes place on his 70th birthday! The  show will be Joel’s 110th all-time performance at The Garden.
Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Presents Motor City Live: A Motown Christmas
(ATLANTIC CITY, NJ) -- Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City has extended Motor City Live: A Tribute to Motown through the month of December with a special Motor City Live: A Motown Christmas. Along with your favorite Motown classics, you’ll hear some Motor City versions of your favorite Holiday songs sprinkled in like “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” from The Temptations, Aretha Franklin’s “Winter Wonderland,” “I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus” and “Santa Claus is Coming to Town” from the Jackson 5, Smokey Robinson’s “Jingle Bells” and much more.

An Interview with Chip Davis Of Mannheim Steamroller Christmas
You can experience the magic of the holidays — Steamroller-style — when Mannheim Steamroller Christmas by Chip Davis makes a tour stop this Thursday, December 6, 2018, at New Brunswick, NJ’s historic State Theatre.
Max Weinberg’s Jukebox LIVE! at the Grunin Center
Something is different about tonight’s November 18, 2018 concert at Toms River, NJ’s Grunin Center for the Arts starring Max Weinberg, celebrated drummer from Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band!
PHOTOS: Matt O'Ree Band at The Stone Pony in Asbury Park
(ASBURY PARK, NJ) -- The Matt O'Ree Band returned to The Stone Pony in Asbury Park on Friday, November 16 and photographer Estelle Massry of Coucou Photography was on hand to take some photos.  David Bryan from Bon Jovi was one of the special guests that night.
"How Could You Not Love Them?" The Buckinghams and Herman's Hermits LIVE! at BergenPAC
Although it’s a chilly Saturday, Nov. 17, 2018 evening in Englewood, NJ, music lovers are lined up outside the Bergen Performing Arts Center waiting to hear classic songs of the ’60s as performed by two quintessential groups of the era — The Buckinghams and Herman’s Hermits starring Peter Noone!
If It Ain't Baroque... Bach's Brandenburg Concertos With Symphony in C
You know the old joke: If it ain’t Baroque, don’t fix it? Well, put away those tools, dear reader. Bach’s Brandenburg Concertos ARE Baroque, so no fixing necessary. This Saturday, December 1, Symphony in C is performing Johann Sebastian Bach’s Brandenburg Concertos Nos. 2 through 6 at the Rutgers-Camden Center for the Arts. Officially presented in 1721, these collective works are considered to be some of the finest orchestral compositions of the Baroque era (generally 1600 to 1750). These six concertos are among the most recorded, performed and beloved works by Bach. – And that’s J.S. Bach, for those of you keeping score at home. There are a LOT of Bachs.

Features You Might Like

An Interview with Chip Davis Of Mannheim Steamroller Christmas

An Interview with Chip Davis Of Mannheim Steamroller Christmas

You can experience the magic of the holidays — Steamroller-style — when Mannheim Steamroller Christmas by Chip Davis makes a tour stop this Thursday, December 6, 2018, at New Brunswick, NJ’s historic State Theatre.

PHOTOS: Matt O'Ree Band at The Stone Pony in Asbury Park

PHOTOS: Matt O'Ree Band at The Stone Pony in Asbury Park

(ASBURY PARK, NJ) -- The Matt O'Ree Band returned to The Stone Pony in Asbury Park on Friday, November 16 and photographer Estelle Massry of Coucou Photography was on hand to take some photos.  David Bryan from Bon Jovi was one of the special guests that night.

Music At Bunker Hill Makes Acoustic Connections In South Jersey

Music At Bunker Hill Makes Acoustic Connections In South Jersey

In the baseball saga “Field of Dreams,” Kevin Costner’s character proclaims, “If you build it, they will come.” And Carol Westfall, President of Music at Bunker Hill, believes this saying holds true as well for other things – such as a multi-concert-season chamber music series in Gloucester County.

PODCAST: Grammy Winner Terri Lyne Carrington At TD James Moody Jazz Festival

PODCAST: Grammy Winner Terri Lyne Carrington At TD James Moody Jazz Festival

Drummer, leader, and composer Terri Lyne Carrington made history as the first woman to win a Grammy for Best Instrumental Jazz for her album “Money Jungle: Provocative in Blue.” Now, she brings her interpretation of Duke Ellington’s “Money Jungle” to the TD James Moody Jazz Festival at NJPAC on November 11, 2018, as part of a program called “Jazz Vinyl Revisited.” Producer Susan Wallner talks to Carrington about her connections to the jazz greats Clark Terry and Max Roach; her newest project, the Berklee Institute of Jazz and Gender Justice; and why she thinks drummers make natural leaders.

Event calendar
Thursday, Dec 13, 2018


PROJECT/OBJECT @ The Saint, Asbury Park - 7:00pm

JERRY BLAVAT @ Lobby Bar at Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Atlantic City, Atlantic City - 12:00pm

VIENNA BOYS CHOIR @ Bergen Performing Arts Center (bergenPAC), Englewood - 7:30pm

BRIAN FALLON @ Crossroads (Garwood), Garwood - 8:00pm

The Irish Tenors Holiday Celebration @ Count Basie Center For The Arts, Red Bank - 7:30pm

BREAKING BENJAMIN @ Starland Ballroom, Sayreville - 7:00pm


Elf, The Musical @ Surflight Theatre, Beach Haven - 2:00pm

An Actor's Carol @ Cape May Stage, Cape May - 7:30pm

Irving Berlin's Holiday Inn @ Paper Mill Playhouse, Millburn - 1:30pm and 7:00pm

Hudson Theatre Works presents "And My True Love Gave To Me" @ Hudson Theatre Works, Weehawken - 8:00pm


On the Map @ Pollak Theatre @ Monmouth University, West Long Branch - 7:30pm


Holiday Open Mic Night! @ Black Box Performing Arts Center, Teaneck - 7:30pm

View all events


For more on our awards, click here

New Jersey Stage © 2018 by Wine Time Media, LLC | PO Box 140, Spring Lake, NJ 07762 (732) 280-7625 |

Images used on this site have been sent to us from publicists, artists, and PR firms.
If there is a problem with the rights to any image, please contact us and we will look into the matter.