Artist Picks: The Front Bottoms

It’s time to discuss my favorite band: The Front Bottoms. The Front Bottoms are an American indie rock band that originated in Woodcliff Lake, New Jersey in 2006. Their latest album (and arguably their best album) was released on October 13, 2017, marking their sixth album release. Known for their thoughtful lyrics and garage-band-chic production, The Front Bottoms is worth a good, hearty listen during your next long commute or road trip. Here are the top picks from this iconic punk band.

Maps

“Maps” is a song from “The Front Bottoms” album, one of the earliest studio releases. The production gives the track a great tempo and the lyrics are certainly some of my favorite that the band has ever released.

Flashlight

“Flashlight” is one of my first loves. The lyrics are what attracted me first, which is usually the case with any sone from The Front Bottoms. The production is out of the ordinary for the earlier tracks of the band- more laid back and a trumpet tune that is to die for.

Peace Sign

“Peace Sign” is a track from the band’s newest album and my current commute tune. It’s a track that is easy to put on repeat, the oddly swing production easy to enjoy in any mood.

Far Drive

“Far Drive” is an upbeat track from the band’s newest album. The nostalgic subject matter is the biggest draw to this song, the clever lyrics highlighting that emotion.

Vacation Town

Another one of my all time favorite, “Vacation Town” is a track from the band’s newest album, as well. The beach-front vacation vibe with someone you love is the largest draw to this song and what will make you keep it on repeat during your next drive.

Twin Size Mattress

Arguably one of the best releases that The Front Bottoms has ever released. The lyrics, the production, it all is incredible. Take time to read the lyrics more than once as you listen, and then enjoy the slender of this track.

Peach

A favorite for any lover, “Peach” is a great, odd song of romance. This is another one that is worth a few moments of lyric reading. There is a lot of emotion that is worth totally understanding and regarding.

Lipstick Covered Magnet

From the “Rose” EP comes “Lipstick Covered Magnet.” The tempo is upbeat and the lyrics are incredibly clever, some of the best that the band has released.

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Weekly Playlists: February, Week 3

AWOLNATION’s newest album installment has inspired a throw-back week. When it’s cold and dreary, there isn’t much better than enjoying some music that premiered when the weather was simply better. Here are five new (and some not so new) tracks to add to your driving playlist!

“Let’s Hurt Tonight” by Onerepublic

Onerepublic’s newest album has plenty of great hits, but the classic “Let’s Hurt Tonight” is never worth overshadowing. The lyrics are traditional Onerepublic splendor. Writers spend a lot of time honing their practice to create lyrics like that, but Onerepublic delivers them effortlessly.

“Tall, Tall Tale” by AWOLNATION

From AWOLNATION’s newest album comes “Tall, Tall Tale.” A narrative-esque production that builds to classic AWOLNATION synths and electronic beats, this track is one of the best off of “Here Come The Runts.” Also, the water droplet production accent is oddly satisfying.

“Not Your Fault” by AWOLNATION

An older pick from this talented group, “Not Your Fault” is a classic from AWOLNATION’s first album. This is an instance of the incredible lyrics that the band writes. Take some extra time to listen to this one and be sure to look up the lyrics sometime.

“Peace Sign” by The Front Bottoms

The Front Bottoms are an iconic addition to any pop punk fan’s playlist, and “Peace Sign” is no doubt one of the best tracks ever produced. While it took some time to grow on me, it’s now become a part of my favorite playlists. Lyrics, production, great vocals, it has it all.

“Joanne” by Lady Gaga 

Gaga’s “Joanne” album is iconic for her brand. It’s a whole new style with a whole new vibe, and fans either loved it or hated it. (I happened to be obsessed with it.) “Joanne” is one of the best on the album, chill, slow and incredibly talented lyric writing. It’s an underrated track, but certainly one of the best.

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Steps To Free Your Stuck Car This Winter

Snow is fun until you become a driver, then it just becomes a hassle and a downer. The worst is having to wake up early to make it to work and then sliding right into a snow bank or not being able to get out of your driveway at all. Here are the steps that you should take when getting freeing your car from the snow.

Before The Methods
Before getting in and trying the following methods, dig the snow out from in front, underneath and in the back of your car. Clear a path long enough for wheels to move forward and back a few feet if space allows. Remove any snow that it higher than ground clearance. During big snow storms, keep a shovel handy. If you don’t have one, at least try to break up any ice that’s formed below the tires. Also, dig out the tailpipe before you start your engine to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning.

The Forward-and-Back
Move forward just a bit, then slowly back, then up again, applying a bit of gas. This can get rid of loose snow and possibly give you the traction to get out. Listen carefully, though, and if you hear any tire spinning, stop immediately.

The Brake
If your vehicle didn’t move at all or a tire is spinning, try braking while, at the same time, giving it a little gas. This should decrease the spinning while transferring power to the wheel. If able to, try turning the wheels slightly the other way and see if that aids in gaining traction. Don’t try this method for long, though. No more than a few seconds as it can overheat your brakes.

Muscle
If possible, try to find some Good Samaritans that can give you a hand- or rather some muscle. Double some extra muscle with an ounce of gas, but be aware of your helpers and always ensure their safety.

Sand Or Kitty Litter
Adding sand or kitty litter beneath your tires can add traction that won’t damage your tires. It’s worth keeping some in your car during the winter months, just to be safe and have extra options if you get stuck. Don’t ever use antifreeze to melt the snow or ice. This toxic substance can find its way into storm drains and waterways. Salt is also not recommended, as it’s corrosive and can damage the undercarriage of your car.

Always be prepared when your car does break free. If you feel any vibrations, check to be sure that there isn’t packed snow and ice on your wheels. If you can’t break your car free, hunker down and call a tow truck as soon as you can. Check out essentials to keep in your car during the winter months.

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Weekly Playlists: February Week Two

The weather is frightful, as is the drive to work, out with your friends, or even just to the grocery store. But, with a few minutes comes a few more songs to tack onto your “driving” playlist. While it may be slick and cold, your current music choices shouldn’t be. Here are five more tracks to add to your playlist this week!

Stranger Things by Onerepublic


“Stranger Things” is the newest single released by Onerepublic. Very reminiscent of Coldplay’s “Something Just Like This,” this love song is packed with emotion, great lyrics, and a fantastic production. But, what else would you expect from Onerepublic? This old-time band has been kicking out great tracks from the beginning, and “Stranger Things” is nothing but perfect.

Table For One by AWOLNATION

AWOLNATION has an odd production and lyric choice, but this is certainly why fans were drawn to them. “Table For One” centers the style a bit, but keeps the vocals reminiscent of their previous style. The beat is slower and the lyrics are thoughtful, which is something that AWOLNATION can sometimes lack. It’s a great track to put on repeat.

Gorgeous by X Ambassadors

Another track that has been put on repeat in my 2008 Dodge Caliber is“Gorgeous” by X Ambassadors. The band is incredibly notorious for releasing fantastic music, complete with thoughtful lyrics and amazing production choices. “Gorgeous” is just one of many to check out by the iconic band.

Wild Heart by Bleachers

“Wild Heart” is a Bleachers favorite of mine. The production is what grabs you first, after the first few listens you can appreciate the entirety of the track. The lyrics are well planned, as is the case with any track that Bleachers releases. It’s truly the best piece of “Wild Heart.” Be sure to listen closely and, above all, enjoy.

Great Love by Vacationer

Vacationer is the most relaxed pick this week, “Great Love” being my favorite from them. This is the one you listen to when you’re running very, very late and need to find some chill, or when you’re driving home late and you’re left with the darkest winter night.

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How To Handle An Accident

In lieu of a recent minor fender bender that I was involved in, it was brought to my attention that accident procedure is a topic that I actually am not all that familiar with, as I’m sure is the case with many young drivers. The entire ordeal was a fumble-fest, and with January roads still icy, the chances of an accident are still higher than usual.

Step One

Move to a safe area if you can. If you aren’t injured and have the ability to move your car, that should be your first order of business. Move it to the shoulder of the road. If you can’t, flip on your hazards to warn other drivers that you won’t be moving anytime soon. Be sure that your vehicle is totally stopped. Take a moment to relax and check to be sure it is safe to get out of your car.

Step Two

Check on the others involved. Any injury should be checked upon. There’s a good chance that neither you or the other driver is a health professional, so it is better to be safe than sorry. Even minor dizziness or aches should be checked. Call 911 if there are any major injuries.

Step Three

Call the police to the scene. Even in minor accidents, a police accident report is essential when dealing with your and the other drivers’ car insurance company. Cooperate fully, but avoid admitting fault or blaming others. Let the police decide objectively and determine fault.

If police can’t make it to the scene, you can file an accident report through your state’s DMV.

Step Four

Try to gather as much information as you can, including:

-Driver and passenger names

-License plate numbers

-Insurance information

-Makes and models of all vehicles involved

-Contact info for an eyewitness, if available

-Location of the accident

-The name and badge number of any responding officer

Step Five

Document the scene. If you have a smartphone with a camera, take a few photos of the scene. These could come in handy when dealing with your insurance company.

Step Seven

Make your claim. If you aren’t sure who to call, checkyour insurance card for your insurer’s contact information.

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February Playlists: Week One

While we were graced with a week of fantastic weather, the cold has decided to make a reappearance. Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem to be going away, either. The air is colder, snow is falling, and roads are icier. Commuters are back to the original winter grind of leaving far before the usual time to arrive at their destination. It’s time for a bit of a music pick-me-up to make the return to the cold a little more bearable. Here are five more tracks to add to your, unfortunately, longer commute.

Windows (feat. Prof) by Atmosphere

Atmosphere is certainly a style of rap that is easy to love. “Windows” is by far on of my personal favorites. It’s a jazzy tune with fantastic lyrics to match. Atmosphere is a great group to put you in a good mood if you are in a rut.

Mama Always Told Me (feat. Madison Love) by G-Eazy

How I glazed over this track during my first listen of G-Eazy’s newest release is totally beyond me. “Mama Always Told Me” is most likely my favorite pick from The Beautiful & Damned. There is an underlying jazzy, swing element that is incredibly pleasing. It’s a great track to zone out and enjoy, but the lyrics are certainly some that you should take time to listen to at least a few times.

Will He by Joji

A different pick for this week, “Will He” has a very etherial and otherworldly vibe. The lyrics are thoughtful and worth a few listens. The vocals always draw you back in, keeping you intent and wanting more. Certainly a chill tune to listen to. Start your morning off with “Will He,” you won’t regret it.

Chances by Subculture Sage

Much like Atmosphere, Subculture Sage has a jazzy, swing vibe that I have been loving recently. Lots of new artists are experimenting with jazzy tunes, and I’m certainly not complaining. “Chances” breaks into more traditional rap, as well. The verses are thoughtful and the production matches it very well.

Sawed Off Shotgun by The Glorious Sons

The Glorious Sons are certainly growing in popularity, “Everything Is Alright” being one of my picks last week. “Sawed Off Shotgun” has many of the same properties. While sounding almost like a country song, The Glorious Sons creates a harmony between country and true alternative. It appreciates the rustic feel of country music, but brings in the lyrics and clever production of modern alternative.

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Cloth Or Leather? Which Interior Should You Choose?

Car interiorsWhile seemingly an unimportant factor in choosing a car, it’s a factor that will come up later if you chose an option you didn’t prefer. Whether for aesthetic or comfort, choosing the interior fabric of your vehicle is certainly a discussion to have when buying a new car. Continue reading

January Playlists: Week Four

Playlist of the weekIt’s getting warmer and the sun is making an appearance much more these days. As the colder months pass, it’s time to revamp your commute playlist. Your drive may not be as long, but that’s certainly no reason to not take advantage of the time you do have to jam out. Here are some new tracks to add to your January playlist: Continue reading

New Tracks To Add To Your January Playlist

January car musicThe air is colder and the snow is plentiful. Unfortunately, the notorious winter commute persists another year. With the extra time tacked on to your travels, it’s ever important to amp up your tunes, as well. Here are some new songs to add to your commute playlist. Continue reading