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Columns By Bob Makin

New Brunswick-originated Cook Thugless chat up their roots, their dope blend of hip-hop, jazz, funk, rock and hysterical stage antics, their many side projects, their hand in the upcoming launch of the Makin Waves Summer Concert Series at Asbury Park Brewery, and the next fillings in their eclectic catalog.... READ ON

Deal Casino latest EP, “Isadora Duncan,” features four new songs that showcase the Asbury Park-based bands maturation as songwriters, while doing justice to their amazing live show. ... READ ON

JAHK will release a new single, the upbeat but karmic “Round,” on June 18. Photo by Phil D'Auria. Also featured in the Scene Report are Makin Waves Summer Concert Series at Asbury Park Brewery, Stag Party’s record release party, Co-Op Communique’s latest indie compilation, Brendan Fletcher’s benefit for Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, and Christian singer-songwriter Aly Giglio. ... READ ON

A chat with veteran Jersey indie rockers The Brixton Riot about past feats, latest doings and future glories. ... READ ON

This album has one of my favorite new songs on it, “The Abe Vigoda Polka.” Hysterical! Go see The Porchistas play it live on June 8 at Tierney’s Tavern, Montclair, along with the rest of “Porch Drive.”  ... READ ON

In addition to the premiere of Toms River-based hard rock band Ropetree’s new video for “So Bad,” the second single from their forthcoming LP, “The Saints of Asbury Park on Their Stone Pony,” this week’s Scene Report also includes news about The West End Weekly summer concert series in Long Branch and the Second Annual Pulse Memorial Benefit for Asbury Park’s Project R.E.A.L. HIV outreach, LBGT and LBGT youth center. ... READ ON

Jahk performs May 19 at the Stone Pony in Asbury Park during “Honoring Powerhouse Females,” an all-star tribute concert that benefitted Planned Parenthood.  Also featured in this week’s Scene Report are Homeless Apians, Karmic Juggernaut, Predator Dub Assassins, and Franke Previte & Lisa Sherman. ... READ ON

Bayonne-based Gatherers have released “We Are Alive Beyond Repair,” their second LP for Equal Vision Records and fourth studio release overall since 2012. In support of the new album, Gatherers have embarked on a national tour that brings them June 6 to The Saint in Asbury Park.... READ ON

I usually can tell within the first 30 seconds of a song whether I want to write about a new band or one I’ve never heard before. I’ll forward through about four songs until something strikes me, and if it doesn’t by then, I move on. ... READ ON

It’s Mother’s Day, and Princeton-based Irish rocker Helen O’Shea is enjoying her two children, Lauren and Luke, and her husband, Paul, while taking a wee break from making music with her two bands: the original “AmeriCeltiCana” act, The Shanakees, and the traditional Irish outfit, The Shenanigans. Before balancing the life of motherhood and music, O’Shea also juggled a career in medicine as an obstetrician and then as a professor at Montreal’s prestigious McGill University. At the request of her two children, she gave up her medical and teaching careers to focus on them. ... READ ON

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