Star Off Machine
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Star Off Machine

Huntington Beach, California, United States | SELF

Huntington Beach, California, United States | SELF
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Burn This ~ by: Star Off Machine
Another band of head-bangers who don't need a "parental advisory" to accompany this worthy 12-song set of anger and affirmation. Some listeners might detect a taste of Creed's influence herein -- a suitable companion on the road to redemption. Singer Erick Holloway digs into his personal archives, as in "Lost," harkening back to seventh grade, over a busy riff and then equally active strummed chords, reaching higher, trying to taste the memories, feel the frustration, and achieve the just-out-of-reach possibilities. Guitarist Robin Charlet, teamed with bassist Jeremy Whitely and drummer Greg Tuthill, flesh out a sound that's a little like Creed or Alterbridge -- in a totally good way. Check out "Say Goodbye" -- there's regret, yet hope, and a tuneful chorus to help "pick up the pieces." The melodies and chord schemes through the album rise and soar and drive on hard, propelling lots of radio-ready tuneage, from "Disaster" to "Ninth Floor," making "Burn This" a worthy disk to add to the stack. www.myspace.com/staroffmachine... - All Access by Rob Swick


ROCKWIRED INTERVIEWS STAR OFF MACHINE


BURN THIS!
STAR OFF MACHINE TALKS TO ROCKWIRED
ABOUT THEIR DEBUT CD BURN THIS
AND THE CHEMISTRY THAT KEEPS THEM TOGETHER

INTERVIEWED BY BRIAN LUSH

It's difficult to understand what one has to be angry about in sunny Orange County, California - No parking? You got a single latte instead of a double? You're the only Democrat? Hailing from said County is the OCMA award-winning hard rock band STAR OFF MACHINE, whose urgent lyrics, grinding guitars and thunderous rhythm section put them at odds with the power pop, tribute bands, and emo sounds that their particular zip code is known for. They have just released their debut CD 'BURN THIS' (STOFMA/INGROOVES) and according to lead singer ERICK HOLLOWAY, it's something of a concept record. "It's a looser concept." says HOLLOWAY. "It's not a precise story like a rock opera or anything like that, but the story does have it's ups and downs and I think that we're all very happy with the production of it"

'BURN THIS' is everytthing that a debut rock album should be; punchy and in-your-face. Recorded with top-notch producers, TOM TATMAN (STONE SOUR, CRAIG ERIKSON, LIVING SACRIFICE), TOMMY D (TUPAC SHAKUR, DR. DRE, SNOOP DOGG), and STEPHEN PERKINS (JANES ADDICTION, PORNO FOR PYROS, PANIC CHANNEL) 'BURN THIS' is a musical journey that opens with the explosive 'DISASTER' and ends perfectly with the mesmerizing epic, NINTH FLOOR.

ROCKWIRED spoke to ERICK HOLLOWAY (vocalist), ROBIN CHARLET (guitarist), GREG 'TUT' TUTHILL (drummer) and JEREMY WHITELEY (bassist). Here is how it went.

Now that your album 'BURN THIS' is out there for everyone to hear, how do you feel about it?
ROBIN: It's out in some areas right now, but the album isn't getting released until September 9th. But right now, the feedback that we've been getting on it is a lot better than we expected. I guess that's always a good thing.

ERICK: We're all very happy with how the whole thing turned out. It's got a nice flow to it. It's a concept record so we're excited that the flow of the record went as we planned. It's not a precise story like a rock opera or anything like that, but the story does have it's ups and downs and I think that we're all very happy with the production of it as well. TOM TATMAN from CATAMOUNT STUDIOS produced it and did a really nice job . We had STEPHEN PERKINS from JANES ADDICTION come in and do some auxillary percussion work also.

Explain the band's name to me?
ROBIN: It actually comes from a DR. SEUSS book called "THE SNEETCHES". The book is all about wanting to be in the cool crowd and following a trend and how people in a society tend to follow instead of lead. That's not to say that we're following, but it's a name that just kind of sums up the day and age that we live in. And we would like people to follow our music and remove their 'stars'.

How did this band get together? What got everyone on the same page to want to be in this band?
ERICK: I actually worked with GREG and ROBIN previously on seperate bands and they were having creative differences with their lead singer at the time and they gave me a call and said "Hey, you wanna try working something out?" GREG and ROBIN met JEREMY when they were doing the JEIGER tour four or five years ago and they clicked with him really well. He's a great bass player. So when I got together with GREG and ROBIN we gave him a call and he came out here from Philadelphia to join us.

ROBIN: We've had some issues with bass players in the past and JEREMY ended up being the perfect fit for us and finding ERICK for this band was just a godsend.

Explain, if it can be explained the whole creative process. How do songs in this band get written. How is that whole process initiated?
ROBIN: This is the first time that I've ever been in a group where we all put our 25% in to a song. It mostly comes down to ERICK in the end because what we do is actually write msuic around melodies that ERICK comes up with which really make the songs flow. We start off with a couple of ideas while playing around on guitar and ERICK will come up with a great melody or write some kind of a chorus and we will build a song around that.

So it's a real collaboration then.
ERICK: Our songs tend go through a lot of reincarnations for sure. We'll get something going and I'll take it home and play around with it and I bring it back. It's a lengthy process but in the end, I think we touch all of the bases and make sure that we don't take any shortcuts.

ROBIN: And we're all fully satisfied with our songs once they are finished. It's important for all of us to be happy with our music.

ERICK, talk about the other members of the band. What do you think each of them brings to the table not just musically but personality-wise.
ERICK: I think that our personalities are as eclectic as the differences in our backgrounds as musicians. We all have very different tastes in music and different personalities. - ROCKWIRED


"Radio-ready hard rock from this Orange County band...they're probably going to be huge, if they aren't already..." - Dagger


Q. Does STOFMA have a band mantra or idealogy that you all follow?

A. We write what we feel. We feel what we write. When the audience gives it to us we give it back. We're no bullshit. We love rock n' roll, we were blessed to be able to make the music we love, and we want to share that music with as many people that want to listen.

Q. Talk about some of the songs off your new CD, BURN THIS?

A. The first track, "Disaster", is an in-your-face, hard rock song about reflecting upon one's life only to find out what a mess it has become. In contrast, the album's last track, "Ninth Floor", is a somber orchestral piece about facing absolutes on the road to an eminent end. Everything in between falls somewhere within that spectrum and is an examination of a unsavory loss of innocence. BURN THIS is a contagious collection of melodies that afford listeners a chance to wrap their heads around universal and personal themes.

Q. What was it like working on BURN THIS with Producer Tom Tatman (Stone Sour, Living Sacrifice) and well-known percussionist Stephen Perkins (Jane's Addiction, Porno For Pyros)?

A. Tom is a top notch, major label quality producer. He is hands on and involved with every detail. Catamount is a state of the art recording studio. Tatman uses top of the line equipment, but also is able to employ his many years of experience by utilizing a broad spectrum of vintage recording gear. Tom really gave us the time and level of professionalism to help shape this record into what it has become. He's been such an instrumental part of this project, we feel like he's family.

Stephen Perkins was phenomenal on the record and provided a unique perspective to our music. Perkins was also a musician for whom we already had a tremendous amount of respect. To be able to collaborate with such an accomplished musician was certainly a privilege and an honor. The chance to have Perkins lend his creative spark to Burn This was an incredible opportunity.

Q. STOFMA recently played a Pre CD-Release concert at the world-famous Troubadour in West Hollywood. What was that experience like?

A. We couldn't ask for greater fans. We'd been on hiatus for quite some time recording Burn This, so this was our reunion with our fans on stage. They arrived in full force. The club was packed and the energy was electric. To have the opportunity to share such a high energy performance at such a historic venue was inspiring. The crowd was in our face for the entire set. When we finished, they were so loud, the club had no choice but to give us an encore. It was exhilarating. They brought it and we gave it back. Their energy and enthusiasm made it a memorable night for us.

Q. The band won "Best Hard Rock Band" at the 2008 Orange County Music Awards. How did you get involved with that?

A. We had been playing shows for the judges of the OCMAs trying to get a nomination for best live band in Orange County. After we received the nomination to be one of five groups up for best live band award, Martin Brown(President of the OCMAs), suggested that we submit for a nomination for best hard rock band in Orange County. We gave them a rough cut of "Disaster", and we're excited to hear our names called for the win at the awards ceremony.

Q. STOFMA played the "Yagermeister" Tour. What was that like?

A. Tut and Robin were the only two members of Star Off Machine on the Jager tour. Although Jeremy and Erick were enjoying their time touring on different circuits, they didn't join the band until shortly after the Jager Tour. The Jager Tour was exactly what you would expect. It was belligerence, great bands, great music and great fun. The "on-the-road" experience was priceless, we made life long friendships, and we all look forward to hitting the road again.

Q. The club scene in Southern California is one of the most competitive anywhere in the U.S. Does STOFMA have a plan for coming out on top in terms of getting the best gigs, etc?

A. We've just started working with a spectacular management team that has all the resources to put us in the best venues on the best bills that Southern California has to offer. We will be playing the clubs in LA and Orange County, but will also be headed to some more distant venues in the region(San Diego, Phoenix, Las Vegas, San Francisco, etc.). We also have a 2009 national tour in the works. Most recently, our management company booked us as the direct openers for Sponge at the Brixton South Bay. We're all excited to play in front of one of our long time favorite groups.

Q. STOFMA hauls from Orange County, where bands such as Social Distortion, the Cadillac Tramps and No Doubt, among countless others, call home. What's it like to be a working rock band in the OC?

A. With so many great bands in Orange County, it is definitely a challenge to stand out in the pack. We have been lucky to build such a loyal fan base that keeps growing with every new perf - What's Up Magazine




Los Angeles Edition
The Explosive Rock Of Star Off Machine

by Gary Schwind (writer), November 27, 2008, published in BrooWaha Los Angeles

Three members of the Orange County rock band Star Off Machine discuss how the band's sound comes together, and what they have learned from headlining bands.
At the 2007 Orange County Music Awards, Star Off Machine was nominated for Best Live Band and won the award for Best hard Rock Band. At the Huntington Beach Beer Company , Jeremy (far left, bass), Tut (2nd from left, drums), and Robin (far right, guitar) discussed the band's influences, shows, and what they have learned from headliners they've played with.
Tell me about the name Star Off Machine.

(R) It’s from a Dr. Seuss book called The Sneetches. It’s about conformity. There was a machine built that put stars on the belly. Everyone wanted to be a part of it so they jumped through the machine and had it tattooed on them. Somebody came along and said, “Nobody be the same. Here’s the star off machine.”

(T) It’s about following trends and cliques. It’s a pretty intriguing story. I never knew what it was when I was growing up. It’s a cool point. Going through school, you realize how prevalent it is in life. People tell you it’s cool and they want you to follow. It has a cool ring to it.

(R) Our fans call us STOFMA for short.

For someone who has never heard you, describe your sound.

(R) It’s active rock.

(T) It’s very energetic, explosive. It’s not really something we shot for. It just ended up that way. I think that’s what people get from us. Very energetic, explosive music.

Was there anything you were listening to that influenced you this way?

(J) To tell you the truth, we all have individual influences. Me personally, I try to play as much different music as possible. Then when we bring it all to the table, we just go from there.

(T) There are so many different bands I like in all genres. I think when you have four guys each with their own influences, you come up with your own baby. We all had a history, the three of us [including Robin and Erick]. We’ve known each other for fifteen years and in the last couple years got together and said “Let’s go for it.” We put everything into it and let’s see how it does.

(R) All of our roots are different. My roots are heavy. I think Jeremy’s are too, but on completely different sides of the heavy spectrum.

(T) I was more into funk.

(R) We all have our twenty-five percent that we put into it and it makes something really interesting. I might start with a riff that I think is awesome. Erick will sing over that and then say, “Let me work on that.” He takes it home, my baby, and he brings it back and out of his own head, a different riff would come up that’s really cool.

(J) We write it, ruin it, then rewrite it. There’s definitely a method to his [Erick’s] madness as far as songwriting. We just gotta be on the same level with him and go with it.

What have you learned from some of the groups you’ve opened for and what are some of the favorite bands you’ve opened for?

(R) Tut and I were together a long time ago before we were in this band. We opened for a lot of those same acts then, which allowed us to open for them now. Just watching them is one thing. Some of them would say, “never worry about your stage show until you’re going to be on the road for a month." There’s a lot of little tips. They’ve told our singer what to gargle before shows to get the most out of it. They give rules of the road if you’re out there touring.

(T) Favorites. Sevendust , for sure. Apex Theory . There’s some I really disliked. I won’t name them. Some of them weren’t so open-armed. I think some of the bands in that spot forget that one time they came from the spot where we are. I got turned off by that a little bit. You have to respect them for what they’ve done and take what you can get out of it.

(R) We opened for Mudvayne . They were some of the smartest guys. A lot of great advice. Someone who didn’t have great advice was V-Ice , also known as Vanilla. He was kind of a jerk.

(T) I wasn’t a fan of his new sound. Pissing Razors was cool.

What would you be doing if you weren’t making music?

(J) I’m always going to make music. You can always make a living making music of some sort. You prefer to do it your own way.

(R) I was five years in the NASA program. I always wanted to set foot on Mars.

(R) All of us come from a musical background. My old man, and my brother and I played when I was a kid. It was instilled in me that I would play music. That’s what I wanted to do.

(R) I’d have to be beind a mixing board producing.

(T) Robin is anal.

(R) I am extremely anal. I worked really closely with our producer on this record, just to fix a couple things here or there. I’d be on the production - Broowaha Los Angeles Edition by Gary Schwind


By the first bombastic track, “Disaster” you can tell that Star Off Machine (STOFMA) are a great live band that can deliver the complete rock concert experience. This band rocks hard like Sevendust and Chevelle but creates their own brand of hook-laden alternative hard rock with musical chops to boot. The songs “Lost” and “Inside Out” are better than any current mainstream rock song on radio or satellite. STOFMA put together a full CD of memorable song after memorable song without getting into a repetitive sound like the majority of bands in this style. STOFMA is a band that hopefully will get a chance to prove to the world that they belong at the top of their peers. Get this now!!!

Josh Mckibbin - ORIGIVATION


"Orange County Music Awards presented: Best hard rock: Star Off Machine "
- The Orange County Register (Mar 29, 2008) - THE ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER


"Orange County Music Awards presented: Best hard rock: Star Off Machine "
- The Orange County Register (Mar 29, 2008) - THE ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER


Discography

The Iowa EP 2007 (3 song demo EP)
singles: Bastard, Sorry, Plastic World

"Burn This" 2008 (12 song LP)
Disaster, Lost, Inside Out, Walk Away, Side Of Me, Say Goodbye, Burn This, Superstar, Almost, Bastard, Nothing For Free, Ninth Floor

"Wake Me Up" 2012 (11 song LP)
Wake Me Up, Left Behind, Lacerate, Blend, Make Me, Belong, Sunday Driver, Falling Down, Scars, Power Of One, Side Of Me

Photos

Bio

Southern California Active Rock Band STOFMA (Star Off Machine) was honored and awarded “Best Hard Rock Band” and “Rock Group of the Year” at the prestigious Orange County Music Awards (OCMA) and the Los Angeles South Bay Music Awards (SBMA). STOFMA is quickly finding prominence in the national music scene sharing the stage with the likes of Sevendust, Saliva, Taproot and Marcy Playground. In 2011 STOFMA entered the studio to record their sophomore LP with the guidance of producer Wesley Geer (HedPe, Korn) and began recording tracks at the legendary “Village Recorder” in Los Angeles. The band then teamed up with Dan Korneff (Breaking Benjamin, Paramore, Papa Roach) of the famed “House of Loud” in New York to wrap production and final mixing. Mastering took place in March 2012 at “Sterling Sound” by Grammy award wining engineer Ted Jensen (Alice in Chains, Bush, Seether, Korn, Rise Against, Green Day). STOFMA has also branched out into the world film and has created an original title track for the upcoming release of “Once I Was a Champion” (The story of UFC Champion fighter Evan Tanner). In 2012 STOFMA is making their mark and taking their rightful place in music on a national and global scale.

Star Off Machine has shared the stage with;

Machine Head, Buck Cherry, 3 Doors Down, Monster Magnet, Sponge, Un Loco, Ear Shot, Suicidal Tendencies, Apex Theory, Injected, Hate Breed, Type O Negative, Switched, Chimaira, Stereo Mud, Systematic, 3rd Strike, Pissing Razors, Eve 6, Slaves On Dope, Oleander, Dope,& UPO.