"traditional political unrest-fueled punk rock that unapologetically digs into some fresh new earth"
- Joe Vena, Stereo Killer
"Good ole’ fashioned Punk Rock from Chicago. I really enjoyed listening to voice of Addictions music.
The tunes are full of vim and vigour and I can only imagine that the tunes really shine when played live.
Would love to hear more stuff from these guys soon!"
John Colson Vents Magazine
"It may sound like an attempt to start a revolution and the band has
no problem with that, but the purpose in the music
is awareness that maybe the wheels need to be dismantled, not reinvented."
"Chicago trio Voice Of Addiction is a band that gives a F*&k!"
Here Comes the Flood
cleaning house with stainless track after stainless track. "
"Chicago Band Voice Of Addiction doesn't compromise for anything or anybody.
The DIY trio blends rock, ska, and metal into an explosion of sound,
touching on modern subjects with a view that is simultaneously radical and relatable"
Check out this review of the song "September Remembered"
Check out this review of the album "re-Evolution" in IAE Magazine by clicking HERE
Check out the new interview with Voice Of Addiction at Aj&Dbs by clicking the link below:
"VOA reminds us loudly and clearly that the world continues to have plenty of problems to get charged up about.
V.o.A. got a full page in the Chicago redeye! to see this interview online copy and paste this link
New review check it out below "Politically-charged punk outfit Voice of Addiction self-admittedly
New review of Re-evolution from the Rock and Roll Guru check it out!
V.o.A. has a brand new interview up in the 9th issue of Vents Magazine!
Skope: How does it feel to be chosen as an “A2W” artist for March 2010?
Check out this review of Re-evolution from overseas.
posted Nov 28 2009 by: "SouthSide on the Town"
Click the link below to check out the newest review for "Re-evolution!"
Here is the direct link:
AR: What made you guys decide to get really political with your music?
V.O.A.: It wasn't a conscious decision; it just came out of us naturally. If we are going to be playing and
performing music we think we should talk and sing about everyday issues that effect all of us, not just
how my girlfriend dumped me throw a pity party for me type of music that has become so popular as of
late. As a band our main goal is to provoke thought and shed light on subjects that are often ignored.
There has been a major trend toward suppression of free thought as of late. We are hoping to
counterbalance this to a point where free thought expression is no longer just an idea, but has
manifested itself into something tangible that we can all relate to.
AR: Would you ever consider changing your music to more mainstream to gain more popularity?
V.O.A.: As a band we are constantly progressing, if you listen to our full-length it sounds completely
different than our EP. If you listen to the EP to our newer material we have again progressed toward
something. Also Steve joined the Band in January, since we are a three-piece this is a big change in our
song writing and structuring of songs. I think progression of a band is natural and needs to keep
happening in order to keep the band healthy and alive. However, I would never change our sound
because a record company or so forth wanted me to. We do this because we have fun on stage, if we
didn't play music that we wanted to that made us happy to play what would be the point.
AR: Where would you like to see the band at 5 years from now?
V.O.A.: We are primarily a live band; this is where we shine. I would love to take VOA beyond North America
by this time and not only hit Europe but be able to play across the globe.
Since the band started in 2003, they’ve released four albums and toured up and down the East Coast
and throughout the Midwest. They tour often as possible because they “live to gig.” Currently the band
is searching for a new drummer to join them, so all you talented drummers in the Chicago area check
the band out on MYSPACE or their official website for additional information
Before writing a review for an album, I try to listen to it as much as possible so it has an adequate chance
What motivated you to become a band and how did you get started?
We have all three been in many bands previous to Voice Of Addiction. Jeff and I had been playing together in
bands since we were 13. He moved to Chicago 2 years prior to me and ended up randomly having Rob as
one of his roommates in the Columbia dorms. When I decided to move to Chicago they were over the dorms
and six of us got a house in one of the neighborhoods. This was the first time I had met Rob, and it was as a
roommate. We lived together for 3 1/2 years but V.O.A. wasn't officially formed till a couple years after I moved
to Chicago. Rob was our first and also is our present drummer, with 3 others attempting to replace him in our
intermission. We have reached our pinnacle and have come full circle with the new album "Re-evolution." With
Rob's return on drums and our reunion also with producer Scott Fritz, this proves to be the best release to date.
We all lived, breathed, drank, and evolved together before we even were a band. It's that connection which
enables us to keep
pushing, and striving for the next horizon.
Tell us a little bit about your music.
There is definitely three different personalities at work here. We all grew up in different music genre schools.
I was always into the punk rock and hardcore scene, Rob grew up on metal, while Jeff was a little crunchier.
When we started playing together as a band we were all over the place. If you were lucky enough to grab our
first full-length(which is no longer offered except by special request) it doesn't even sound like the same band
from song to song. But hey, we were all in college, just having fun and playing what we wanted. It was over the
next two EP's (while on hiatus with Rob) that we developed our current sound. It wasn't until we needed a
drummer to fill in that we asked Rob to help us out, and heard what we were missing. He plays his kit harder
then most anyone, and this drove our style a notch further on the new record. We decided to center this record
on him, start at the basement and work up much like a house. I have a big ska and old school punk influence
in my bass lines. Jeff has the wailing, distorted rock tone on his guitar. I have always been a big believer that if
someone is listening to you you should have something worth-while to say. I try to bring up political and social
issues, while still remaining broad enough for it to be felt by the greatest number of people.
There are mixed feelings within the music industry about new Internet technologies. How do you see the
future of the music industry? How do you see these technologies affecting your music?
I am assuming that your mainly talking about being to download music from online, instead of heading to your
local record shop. I have to admit, I used to love rummaging through piles of albums, looking for that piece of
gold that someone hasn't seen yet. A lot of smaller record stores are struggling these days if not already out of
business because of this. I think they will always exist, but as larger corporate record stores move in, it gets
even harder for the little guy. Now the question comes up of people sharing music and such online. A lot of
bands are against this but I differ. We personally put everything onlline ourselves for free download. This hasn't
hurt us at all. People tend to appreciate the gesture. As long as you include some great artwork and cool
packaging people still buy the cds. (look at radiohead recently as a great example) Also if you are like me, you
would prefer the cd quality over the lossy mp3's that are thrown around everywhere. I use the mp3 as a preview
for if I want to purchase their album. I have also noticed when you offer the songs for free, people are more apt
to purchase other merchandise, and all that does is help you promote your band with people putting stickers
on their car, wearing your shirts, patches, buttons etc. The internet is revolutionizing the music industry, but the
grassroots will always remain, especially at live shows. The only people this really effects is bands that don't
play out a lot, and the ones at the top of the food chain in the music industry.
What is one positive thing and one negative thing you have learned about the music business through your
As with most musicians I think, the negative just seems to keep piling up while little light is seen. The music
business is an unfortunate neccessity though and must be understood and used in order to be successful. I will
be the first to admit how daunting this can be. I new nothing about music business a few years ago, but with
perseverance have managed to learn enough and stay afloat. So one negative thing is it is a business, which has
nothing to do with creativity. One positive is you actually can achieve some of your goals by working with the right
people, and relationships can actually be made, kept and evolve through the right avenues.
What advice can you give to other musicians who are trying to make a career of music?
The best advice is just to believe in yourself and not to give up. Noone is going to take you seriously or your music
until you do. Voice Of Addiction is a D!i!Y! band and in fact, every group I have been a part of has been. There is
literally millions of bands out there, and hard work and good music combined is what will make you carve out your
niche in the masses. Know your audience and cater to them. If you want to make t shirts and can't afford to make
them, do it yourself! want to make an album but don't have a label backing you, do it yourself. Figure out what it is
you want to do, and then quit talking about doing it. Devise a step by step plan of attack and get to it!
Taking a closer look at Chicago’s local bands
By Tiffany Breyne
Assistant A&E Editor
Punk and ska have always been the defiant genres of the music scene, from the energy of the music to the dance
moves to the misfit attitude. The members of Voice of Addiction—Ian Tomele on bass and vocals, Jeff Walschon
on guitar and back-up vocals, and Steve Gregg on drums—have always had that bold incompliance in their music,
but have only had their name and ska-rock style since 2003. While all three members hail from Ohio, Gregg didn’t
join Tomele and Walschon until after they had moved to the Chicago. Voice of Addiction use their bitter and
sometwhat heavy-rock energy to convey their distaste of the media’s talking heads and today’s politicians into the
local music scene. Through e-mail, Tomele gave The Chronicle his views on the city’s shows and the issues he
The Chronicle: How has Voice of Addiction transformed over the years?
Tomele: It was so all over the place in different genres that it left audiences confused. We [would be] growing
toward something else and decide to write all new material. We went through three different drummers
[in a year]. With each [drummer] we played a couple shows after they learned the songs, but it never worked out.
In December of last year we recorded an EP simply titled EP 2005. We wanted to do this very raw in just a few takes
with a lot of emotion. It wasn’t until mid-January of this year that we were complete with Gregg on drums. It’s funny
it took another Ohio kid—he is from Youngstown [and] we are from Cleveland—to really fit with us.
The Chronicle: How did you guys get into making political music?
Tomele: Even though at the outset we played all different styles of music, we were always primarily a political band.
I have always been interested in educating myself with the world we live in and encourage everyone to try and do the
same. It became apparent to me early on that not everybody had the same advantages and/or disadvantages
growing up and throughout their daily lives. I have been a self-proclaimed Anarchist and active in the DIY community
for years and plan on continuing to do so. I am a firm believer that the only way true change can come about is through
cooperation and working together. I guess singing about these things just kind of happened to me; nearly every band
I have been in has been political in nature. In retrospect I guess I thought that if people were listening to what you
were saying you should say something more meaningful than the lyrics I usually hear.
Chronicle: What are some issues you’re concerned with now?
Tomele: Foreign relations; I sing a lot about the ever-widening gap between the classes, the digital divide, the
exploitation of the poor and third world countries, the farce of democracy, the hypocrisy of our leaders and the
problems with our media.
Chronicle: Do you think enough bands nowadays use their music to promote important issues?
Tomele: I think that there are quite a lot of bands that do this—not enough though. And it gets very tricky for these
bands to get their message out to the masses. When you look at all the money and resources that the government
has to promote propaganda compared to what these bands, writers, speakers, etc. have at their exposure, the
difference is absurd.
Chronicle: How does performing in Chicago compare to other cities, if at all?
Tomele: Chicago is different in a lot of aspects. First of all, shows start so early here. I was not prepared for that.
Also in the city there [are] virtually no all-ages shows. I would have to say that my favorite place to play and/or see a
show is at Subterranean, [but] I also like the Note, Double Door, Empty Bottle, Beat Kitchen [and the] Logan Square
Based out of Chicago and comprised of Ian Tomele (Lead Vocals, Bass Guitar) Jeff Walschon (Lead Guitar,