Brendza’s Beat: No KISS, SXSW, PGH scene and more

brendza'sbeatBy: Zach Brendza | Features Editor

No KISS for you

I feel uptight on a Saturday night. Apparently, so does KISS.

The glam rock band is being inducted into the 2014 class of the Rock N’ Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland. But they will not be performing in the induction ceremony April 10 at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, marking the first time the ceremony will be open to the public in New York.

“Our intention was to celebrate the entire history of KISS and give credit to all members,” KISS said on their website.

After speculation that original members Ace Frehley and Peter Criss would not be in the performance, the band decided that they would not perform at the ceremony and focus their attention on celebrating their induction.

“It is over 13 years since the original lineup has played together in make-up and we believe the memory of those times would not be enhanced. Contrary to claims made through the media we have never refused to play with Ace and Peter,” the statement said.

While this may be a case of he said they said, excluding original members from a performance at such a stage like the induction of the Rock N’ Roll Hall of Fame would be a serious issue. KISS wouldn’t be the band they are without Frehley or Criss.

While it is a minor snag to their induction, a performance by the original KISS lineup would have made their induction all the more special.

iTunes festival at SXSW

Another year, another South by South West. But this year, Apple is getting in on the party. Who knew indie could become so mainstream?

SXSW, which runs from March 7 to 16 in Austin, TX, will feature the first iTunes Festival in the United States. The iTunes Festival has been held in London since 2007. With its popularity, the festival has decided to make its way to the United States.

The iTunes Festival at SXSW will run from March 11 through 15 and will feature artists Coldplay, Imagine Dragons, Pitbull, Keith Urban, ZEDD and more. Like the London version, the shows will be free but tickets will be given out on a drawing system, where those who have purchased SXSW badges can enter to attend.

Big name artists for free? That’s cool. But what about the artist on the verge of success?

To me, it seems that SXSW was a festival dedicated to showcasing indie bands, films and interactive. Adding iTunes to the festival seems like a mistake that lets the mainstream media manager into this lesser known established festival.

While SXSW has continued to grow and add more prominent artists and activities, it still gave the vibe of being something cool that was untouched by the regularly radio played artists.

Hugh can too

Enough with the national coverage. Is there anything going on in the Pittsburgh music scene? Have no fear yinzers, there is.

Since 2004, photographer Hugh Twyman has covered what seems like every show at a bar or more established venue in the city. To celebrate a decade of diligence in music journalism, Twyman has started a monthly music series, entitled “Hugh Shows” which started in January. The free series, which shares the same name as his blog, takes place at Eide’s Entertainment on Penn Avenue and showcases local acts and artists. The record shop and more will have its next installment of Hugh Shows on March 8 with Chet Vincent, Cold Weather and Meeting of Important People.

My hat is off to Twyman in doing this series. Taking his love of in store performances and turning it into an event that brings music lovers into a record store once a month on a Saturday afternoon is great. Anything that gets people going to shows and supporting a local record shop is golden in my eyes.

Keep those records spinning.

What’s Out This Week
Beck – Morning Phase
Dierks Bentley – Riser
St Vincent – Self titled
ScHoolBoy Q – Oxymoron

On The Horizon

3/3 The Sword w/ Big Business and O’Brother @ Mr. Small’s
3/4 Les Claypool’s Duo De Twang w/ Reformed Whores @ Mr. Small’s
3/7 Motionless In White w/ Like Moths to Flames, The Plot In You and The Defiled @ Mr. Small’s
3/8 Tonic and Vertical Horizon w/ Dishwalla @ Altar Bar
3/9 Austin Mahone @ Stage AE

Just Announced

3/25 Glen Matlock (Sex Pistols) and Sylvain Sylvain (New York Dolls) Punk Goes Acoustic @ Hard Rock Pittsburgh
5/2 Miss May I w/ For The Fallen Dreams, Like Father|Like Son and New Vegas @ Smiling Moose (upstairs)
5/20 The Head and The Heart @ Stage AE
5/22 Rusted Root w/ The Wailers and Adam Ezra @ Stage AE
6/17 Artic Monkeys w/ White Denim @ Stage AE
6/26 Xavier Rudd @ Altar Bar
8/1 Panic! At The Disco w/ Walk The Moon and Magic Man @ Stage AE