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      Amp Ent Presents: Let Em Riot EP Release Show! in Costa Mesa

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      November 27, 2012

      Tuesday   8:00 PM

      843 W Nineteenth Street
      Costa Mesa, California 92627

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      Amp Ent Presents: Let Em Riot EP Release Show!

      Ages: 21+

      Tuesday Novmber 27th at Detroit Bar AMP Entertaiment Presents:

      Let Em Riot

      Maxi Wild

      Northern Labour Party


      DJ Velvet Touch

      Doors at 8pm, 21+ No Cover


      From :Orange County Register’s Orange Pop: “Let Em Riot ushers in second EP”


      After years of playing guitar in various ska and rock bands, Irvine musician Alan Oakes had grown ready for a new challenge.

      At 15, he was part of the ska group Ex-Presidents, soon followed by a stint in Grover’s Headache. He also played guitar for a bit in Jeffries Fan Club and a handful of local indie acts before later forming the Appearance. That band called it quits in 2008, but Oakes didn’t want to stop making music.

      “After everything fell through … I just continued the writing process,” he says during a recent interview. “I had the intention of maybe one day reforming the band, finding new members or maybe just starting a new band, but I went months and months without finding any musicians and it got frustrating. I thought maybe I’d try to program some drums, since I couldn’t find a drummer, and instead of guitars I’d just do the synth thing.”

      Oakes started building up songs on his computer, tinkering with various elements and teaching himself how to program along the way. In 2010 he released The App EP under the moniker Let Em Riot. For time, he says, it was a struggle to fit in somewhere – or anywhere – in the local music scene. Then he found O.C.’s increasingly noticed hip-hop/electronic trio Blok.

      “I reached out to them and we started doing shows together,” he recalls, gigs that were “a lot of fun and had so much energy. It reminded me of the old ska days where kids would just fill a small room and go nuts. Those were wacky and carefree times, so playing these shows brought back a lot of memories. That energy is what draws people in and everyone is just having fun, which is really all that matters.”

      After booking more dates and reaching out to other acts with an electronic approach, Oakes began writing material for a second EP, the just-released SlashWave. Let Em Riot will celebrate its arrival with a free show Tuesday at Detroit Bar in Costa Mesa, alongside DJ Velvet Touch, Technocrat and more.

      Growing up, Oakes remembers listening to his dad’s classic rock records but also being heavily drawn to ’80s outfits like Tears for Fears and Huey Lewis and the News. It wasn’t until his late teens and early 20s that he discovered more synth-driven stuff from Pet Shop Boys and Kraftwerk.

      “I’ve just always had a special connection with ‘80s pop, I guess,” he admits, even though he has spent the bulk of his career involved in other genres. “I can pretty much trace it back to those early records I was listening to. The connection has always been there.”

      To help breathe some life into the live shows, he recruited friend and visual artist Jason Nelson, who also played bass in the Appearance.

      “I didn’t just want to go up there and push play on a laptop and sing along to it,” Oakes says. “That part took months, to figure out how to perform all of this live and make it interesting.” His solution was Ableton software, choice of many DJs use, plus some additional live effects.

      “With Jason, I thought it would be a cool idea to bring in some of the visuals he was working on and put them in sync with the music. My main concern was that I wouldn’t have other musicians on stage with me, but the visuals really have added to the show.”

      Oakes adds that his vocals are live; he’d feel weird singing over recordings of himself. One day he does hope to incorporate other musicians into his sets to fill out the sound. As far as recording goes, he’s still growing.

      “With the first EP, I was basically converting instruments and trying to find where I felt most comfortable with writing in the electronic genre. After that I really just enjoyed myself, and I wanted to go further and dig a little deeper into it” by exploring sounds and studying production technique. “I’m constantly learning something new.”

      But the adaptability of it is trickier, “coming from bands and having all of that energy behind me on stage to now having it all concentrated into a laptop. I like to change it up live so it’s a little different from what’s on the record. I don’t know exactly how much jamming I can do on a laptop, but the show is as live as I can possibly get it, with all of my little mistakes and imperfections.”

      Let Em Riot, with DJ Velvet Touch, Technocrat, Northern Labour Party and Neveryoumind, performs Tuesday, Nov. 27, at Detroit Bar, 843 W. 19th St., in Costa Mesa. Admission is free, 21-and-up.”

      Cost: No Cover

      Categories: Concerts & Tour Dates

      Event details may change at any time, always check with the event organizer when planning to attend this event or purchase tickets.
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