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Gronk churned out a wildly diverse output that includes a goth double album, a synth symphony, two 20-minute drum ’n’ bass pieces and a song for every English monarch from 1066 onwards—and that was by the time he was 18.
WHEELS 2.0 RACES TOWARD THE CHECKERED FLAG
It’s Been a Long, Strange Trip This Year for Jesse and Erica, Who Are Looking Forward to Two Glorious Weeks Off, But First…

Wipe your eyes, boys and girls—this is our last column before we post your favorites from 2009. Take these picks to your holiday and check back in with us in the New Year. We may be off the digital map, but you know we are addicted to our email, so be sure to continue to riddle us with your faves over the break: [email protected].

ONE TO WATCH
Gronk
(www.myspace.com/thegronk): London-based musical chameleon Alex Mounsey, aka Gronk, began writing music when he was just 9 years old, and spent his high school days in boarding school developing the type of discipline that underlines his musical trajectory today. With a bit of introspection and a slightly different outlook on life, Gronk churned out a wildly diverse output that includes a goth double album, a synth symphony, two 20-minute drum ’n’ bass pieces and a song for every English monarch from 1066 onwards—and that was by the time he was 18. His latest release, The Long Way Around, is a product of his move to the U.S.—a unique pairing of a laptop, a saxophone player and a marimba player. It’s a light, summery rock album, mainstream but quirky. The album is currently available at www.gronk.co.uk, and early demos of his solo follow-up have already started to surface on the internet. Buy yourself a gift this holiday season and get introspective with Gronk.

ON DECK
Transfer
(www.myspace.com/transferband): Signed to indie label Obscure Magpie, these rockers from San Diego quickly caught our attention. Imagine Modest Mouse meets Interpol meets The Bravery, with a little Beatles flavor added in. The band recently finished some West Coast dates with Stellastarr. Keep an eye on these guys in 2010; they won’t be a hidden gem for much longer.

BUZZIN’
We Are the In Crowd
(www.myspace.com/wearetheincrowd; @wearetheincrowd): This New York-based, female-fronted alternative pop/rock band recently signed to Hopeless Records. For more info on the band, you can reach management at [email protected]

 

BAND/ARTIST UPDATES
16 Frames
(www.myspace.com/16frames; @16frames): This Wheels pick may be more familiar now, especially if you’re a fan of So You Think You Can Dance. “Where It Ends” is the closing track on the elimination show and has been featured for the last several weeks. In addition, “Back Again” is also spinning on mtvU, so be sure to tune into one of these—and get the album today.

ANOTHER BILLIE BANGER? (UPDATE)
Are you free Wednesday afternoon? (11/12a)
BIEBER BY CHRISTMAS?
How's that for a tease, Bieber Nation? (11/12a)
NEAR TRUTHS: MEET
THE NEW BOSSES
Not the same as the old bosses (11/12a)
CMA CENTERPIECE
CARRIE UNDERWOOD
This sure feels like her moment. (11/12a)
WHO'S GETTING ZERVAS?
It's down to two bidders. (11/12a)
THE GRAMMY NOMINATIONS
They'll soon be here, and then we can start obsessing about who'll win.
U.K. SPECIAL
Forget Brexit--it's our yearly survey of doings in Blighty. And if you still can't forget Brexit, try drinking.
ZERVAS STATION
Who's going to land the hottest unsigned property in music?
WEED!
That's what Hollywood smells like. Seriously. 24/7.
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