7Lions, “Born 2 Run” – Now that the Kings are toting around the Stanley Cup, we feel compelled to acknowledge the song that, ostensibly, got them their hardware. (We’re not fully conversant in jock rock, but do other pro teams in L.A. have “theme songs” as the Kings have had?) Anyway, “Born 2 Run” is a hip-hop/rock/dance banger from the new-ish sextet fronted by former Bay Area indie rapper Mika “Prophet” Guillory. Needing “a vehicle to express my rock side,” Prophet teamed up with Forrest Fulmer, Morgan Taylor Reid (who produces), Tony Tommasi, Dan Hange and Will Carpenter on a project that like Prophet’s former band, Terra Incognita, caught the attention of producer/label honcho RedOne. And with the Kings’ euphoria hardly having worn off, 7Lions’ EP came out today.
DWNTWN, “Alamo Square” – The L.A. duo of Jamie Leffler and Robert Cepeda made big noise with “See My Eyes,” their contribution to the recently released Kitsuné America compilation. On its heels comes the EP “Cowboys,” which will be available for free download on Tuesday, and, Cepeda says, “tells the story of the pleasant and not-so-pleasant times in our lives. Long summer nights, drives to nowhere, breakup, and everything in-between.” The new single “Alamo Square” suggests all that, and a little more. DWNTWN’s EP release party is Monday, June 25 at It’s a School Night at Bardot.
Beware of Darkness, “Howl” – The title track from the first EP from this power trio recalls a lot of the bluesy rock being made these days, but Santa Barbara-bred shredder Kyle Nicolaides does his best inject some character into the proceedings. Joined by Tony Cupito on drums and Daniel Curcio on bass, Nicolaides throws down a gauntlet of grit and desperation that has him earning (possibly premature) comparisons to serious old-schoolers. “Howl” is a nice start. Beware of Darkness plays an early set tonight at the Viper Room.