Thursday, June 30, 2016

CD Review: New Albums Arriving From Holon, Mia Doi Todd And Miss Sophie Lee

From Norway comes the debut album from singer/songwriter Ronny Pedersen know as Holon. The new release titled "The Time Is Always Now" will be released on August 12 through Autumnsongs Records. It features eight songs, beginning with the progressive rock/folk feel of the nine-minute "The Belly Of Being." His music carries a free, 60's era, acoustic rock without the boundaries or structures of typical song layout as "Falling" and "Time To Go" push past the ten-minute mark. Holen receives contributions on this album from fellow musicians Lars Fredrick Froislie, Silje Leirvik, Geir Anfinn Halland Johansen, as well as from the album's producer Rhys Marsh. The music will definitely take you on a journey as you listen through the sonic landscape of "The Time Is Always Now" and the album closer "A Drop Of Me." To find out more about Holon and his debut release "The Time Is Always Now," please visit his Facebook page at facebook.com/holon.official.

From Los Angeles comes the latest release titled "Songbook" from singer Mia Doi Todd. The new nine-song release features songs written by some of her favorite artists that she has has been performing live for many years. Beginning with Neil Young's "Only Love Can Break Your Heart," Mia adds an innocence to the lyrics as she delivers the words with grace and emotion. The Cure's "Close To Me" and Prince's "When Doves Cry" are almost unrecognizable as Mia gives the songs her own special touch. Sandy Denny's "Who Knows Where The Time Goes?" is the perfect setting for Mia's angelic vocals, while "Careful You" from TV On The Radio is the ideal song for Mia to incorporate into her live performance. The album finishes with the south of the border sway of Townes Van Zandt's "Pancho And Lefty" and Joni Mitchell's "The Circle Game," which fits Mia's vocal range, infused with a shuffle rhythm. To find out more about Mia Doi Todd and her latest album "Songbook," please visit miadoitodd.com.

From the soul of south comes the latest release from New Orleans songstress Miss Sophie Lee title "Traverse This Universe." The new eleven song release features her wonderful backing band The Parish Suites. Miss Sophie Lee wrote six of the album tracks, including the nostalgic feel of the opener "You And Me (the Universe)." She adds a country vibe to "That's When Your Heartache Begins," before picking up the tempo with the jazzy feel of "Someday." Miss Sophie Lee and the Parish Suites bring back the days of the roaring forties with the swing of "Undecided" and "Ain't Misbehaving." The band puts a little extra into Duke Ellington's "It Don't Mean A Thing If It Ain't Got That Swing," before closing with the sweet gentle pop of "Lovely In That Dress." To find out more about Miss Sophie Lee and the Parish Suites latest release "Traverse This Universe," please visit misssophielee.com.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

CD Review: New Music From Indie-Artists Sir O, Radclyffe Hall And High Dive Heart

From the U.K., comes the full-length debut album from singer/songwriter Sir O. The new twelve-song release titled "Forever + A Day" begins with the thumping drumbeat of "Stay" as his vocals are very inviting. The song's melody grows with each verse as you feel uplifted by his voice. The album's lead single "Lost" is a pop/rock gem as he pours he emotions into the song's lyrics. Sir O lets loose his rock side with the blazing guitar solo of "Three Words," before pulling back the reigns with the soft acoustics of "Comeback." His songwriting is beautiful on the ballad "Forever Plus A Day" and on the album closers "Something Is Missing" and the uptempo pop/rock of "Glimmer Of Hope." To find out more about Sir O and his latest release "Forever + A Day," please visit sir-o.com.

From Boston comes the latest release from the electronic pop band Radclyffe Hall titled "Ghosts." The new ten song release begins with their latest single, "Rather Be." It's a synthesizer fueled song that gets lifted with the bright sounds of the chorus as the beat carries an eighties dance vibe. Their sound becomes very addictive with the dance club rhythm of "Dare To Dream" and the Madonna-like pop of "Don't Wait (It's Now Or Never)." The keyboard funk/dance groove of "Control" has the beats and chorus that can go on for hours, while the sultry vocals of "Stars" will wrap around you with it's R&B vibe. To find out more about Radclyffe Hall and their latest release "Ghosts," please visit radclyffehallmusic.com.

The electronic/pop duo of Jason Reeves and Nelly Joy will be releasing their sophomore effort "HDH VS. MTR (Part One)" as High Dive Heart look to continue their popularity on the charts. Their 2015 release "Sonic Graffti" featured the hit single "Vintage," which topped the Global Viral Spotify music chart. Now the duo return with six new tunes, beginning with additive beats of "Misfit" and the dance rhythm of "Dirty Money" as Reeves and Joy's voices mesh so well on these new pop anthems. The all too short new release finishes up with the fun, Maroon 5-feel of "Camera Song" and the energetic build up of "Stars Falls Down," which closes the album on a high note. To find out more about High Dive Heart and their latest release "HDH VS. MTR (Part One)," please visit highdiveheart.com.

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

CD Review: New Music From Black Crown Initiate, Silvertung, (hed) p.e. & Austin John

American progressive metal band Black Crown Initiate will be releasing their second album on the eOne Music label on July 22nd. The new album titled "Selves We Cannot Forgive" features eight tracks of epic, intense music that is sure to take you on a sonic journey. Beginning with the nearly seven-minute, thunderous delivery of "For Red Cloud," which will blow you away with its powerfully exciting musicianship and howling vocals. They welcome you with the mainstream prog-metal piece "Again," before delivering the nine-minute aggressive epic story of "Belie The Machine." The slow build up of the title song, "Selves We Cannot Forgive" displays the band's softer side before finishing the album with the high-powered energy of the "Matriarch" and the dark, moody tones of "Vicious Lives." To find out more about Black Crown Initiate and their latest release "Selves We Cannot Forgive," please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/BlackCrownInitiate.

From Maryland comes the latest release titled "Out Of The Box" from heavy metal band Silvertung. The new album will be released on July 8th through Pavement Entertainment and features six new tracks. Beginning with "Face The Music," the band have taken the strength of their live act and certainly incorporated into this latest release. The music is intense, as lead singer, Speed's vocals bring out the energy of their overall sound. They pull back the reigns on the rhythmic delivery of "Never Too Late," before picking up the pace again on the aggressive flavor of "Devil's Advocate." The short album closes with the metal ballad "You & Me." To find out more about Silvertung and their latest release "Out Of The Box," please visit silvertung.com.

Veteran rock band (hed) p.e. will be releasing their tenth studio album "Forever!" on July 22nd through Pavement Entertainment. Their unique brand of music finds it hard to place them in one music genre and this new thirteen-song album continues that trend. Beginning with the hardcore, nu-metal sounds of "Live" and the rapcore of "Pay Me," (hed) p.e. still carry that chip on their shoulder to prove they are one of the premier metal bands in the world. They infuse reggae into the monstrous metal guitar riffs of "Closer" and bash away any doubt on the punk fury of "Waste." They begin "One Of A Kind" with a reggae groove before its gets taken over by a hardcore metal chorus, then repeat the formula for "Shawdowridge." The album finishes up with the hip-hop flow of "Always" and the island flavor of "Ganja." To find out more about (hed) p.e. and their latest release "Forever!," please visit hedperocks.com.

Former Hinder lead singer Austin John Winkler is returning after a three year absence with a new album titled "Love Sick Radio." He has toned down his heavy metal sound to develop a new country sound that artists like Kid Rock and Uncle Kracker have helped bring to the mainstream. The new six-song release begins with the country/pop beats of "Clique 2 Follow" that have a great up-tempo, addictive rhythm that should easily find it's way to country radio. Winkler gets a little help on his new album from pop artist Sophie Summers and rising country star Jessie James Decker. Summers lends her angelic voice to the chorus of "The Plague" and Decker duets with Winkler on the emotional delivery of "Howlin'." The album finishes with the reggae-pop of "Road To Paradise" and the countrified, hip-hop/pop tones of "Hate That I'm Loving It." To find out more about Austin John and his latest release, "Love Sick Radio," please visit his Facebook page at facebook.com/AustinJohnWinkler.

Monday, June 27, 2016

CD Review: Metal Blade Records Releases New Albums From White Chapel And Denner/Shermann

American hardcore metal band Whitechapel have become one of the premier bands in the genre. Since their beginnings in 2006, the band has continued to grow in popularity which saw their 2014 album "Our Endless War" crack the top 10 on the Billboard album chart. On June 24th, Whitechapel released their sixth studio album titled "Mark Of The Blade." It features eleven tracks that showcase the growth and maturity in their deathcore sound. Beginning with "The Void," Whitechapel come blasting out of the gate with the quick-pace of this exciting hardcore aggressive style. They stay in the same vein with the pounding rhythm of the title song "Mark Of The Blade." The band slows things down for the intense, dark emotions of "Bring Me Home," before grinding out the west coast heavy metal feel of "Tremors." They throw all their energy into the screams of "Tormented," then showcase their musicianship in the instrumental "Brotherhood," before closing the album with the six-minute death metal epic piece "Decennium." To find out more about Whitechapel and their latest release "Mark Of The Blade," please visit whitechapelband.com. 
 
Also released on June 24th is the latest full-length album from Mercyful Fate guitarists Michael Denner and Hank Shermann titled "Masters Of Evil." The duo's 2015 EP "Satan's Tomb" laid the groundwork for this new eight-song release. Beginning with "Angel's Blood," the dual guitar attack is supported by the great rhythm work of Snowy Shaw on drums and Marc Garbowski on bass. Lead singer Sean Peck powers the song, "Son Of Satan" with his soprano vocals as he lets out his heavy metal screams. The band carries a classic Black Sabbath vibe into "The Wolf Feeds At Night" and keep the metal mysticism of "Servants Of Dagon." The album closes with the seven-minute progressive-metal piece, "The Baroness." Denner/Shermann will be performing at this year's Metal Magic Festival and Headbangers Open Air Festival in July. To find out more about their new album "Masters Of Evil," please visit dennershermann.com.

Sunday, June 26, 2016

CD Review: Omnivore Recordings Reissues Classic Albums From The Rave-Ups And From Kate & Anna McGarrigle

American rock band The Rave-Ups found success in the mid-eighties with the hit singles "Respectfully King Of Rain" and "Positively Lost Me." They also made an appearance in the movie "Pretty In Pink" and on the hit TV series "Beverly Hills 90210." But, their flame was quickly extinguished with legal battles over the rights of their music. On July 8th, Omnivore Recordings is reminding us how good The Rave-Ups were with the re-issue of their 1985 album "Town + Country."

The original ten-song release showcases the band still on their climb to stardom. Leading off the album was the college-radio hit single "Positively Lost Me," which established The Rave-Ups as one of alternative rock's bands leading this new revolution in music. The band's accessible sound is easy to welcome with songs like "Better World" and "Radio," while they also showcases their youthful energy in the post-punk attitude of "By The Way" and in their cover of Bob Dylan's "You Ain't Goin Nowhere."

This new re-issue tacks on 11 bonus tracks featuring live takes and early versions of songs that did not appear on the original album. Most of the bonus songs were recorded following the release of the "Town + Country" album for their next release, but due to the legal battles between record labels, the songs were never released until now. To find out more about this new re-issue of The Rave-Ups album "Town + Country," please visit omnivorerecordings.com.

Sister-du0, Kate & Anna McGarrigle were one of the premier folk acts to appear from Canada in the mid-seventies. Their songs have been covered by artists like Linda Ronstandt, Emmylou Harris and Billy Bragg to name a few. Their first two albums received accolades, including "album of the year" honors in the U.K. music polls and they have been re-issued numerous times, but their third album "Pronto Monto" has sat dormant for almost four decades.

The album was originally released in 1978 and added a more pop feel to their wonderfully harmonizing folk charm. On July 1st, Omnivore Recordings will be re-releasing the album for the first time on CD. The album has been newly remastered by Grammy-winner Michael Graves and gives the proper treatment to these memorable songs. For those who may have missed the first time around for this and other releases from the McGarrigle sisters, should invest their time into this album. It showcases their vocal talents in songs like "Oh My Heart" and "Stella By Artois," while accessing the light-hearted pop sound with a cover of "Trying To Get To You." To find out more about the newly re-issued album "Pronto Monto" from Kate & Anna McGarrigle, please visit omnivorerecordings.com.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Vinyl Review: Lost Josh White Album "Josh At Midnight" Gets Proper Vinyl Release

South Carolina blues artist Josh White is receiving his due recognition with the vinyl-only reissue of his 1956 seminal album "Josh At Midnight." White performed on Broadway, in film and radio and was the first African-American to give a White House Command Performance. He never received  the success and fame he deserved during his lifetime, but he was named by artists like Bob Dylan and Nat "King" Cole as an early influence.

The original album was recorded with a single microphone in a converted Manhattan church by Elecktra founder Jac Holzman. It features White, with only an acoustic guitar performing a dozen blues classics, including many public domain songs. The album begins with the traditional "St. James Infirmary" as White injects his emotions into his performance. White receives help from jazz bassist Al Hall and vocalist Sam Gary on the up-tempo swing of "Raise A Rukus" and the storied blues/folk of "Scandalize My Name." White sinks himself into the full-on blues during the six-minute delivery of "Jelly, Jelly!" and tells the story of "One Meat Ball" with such power and grace. The album closes with the quick two-minute hop of "Peter" and the slow-jaunt of "Takin' Names" as White's vocals seem a little too clean for the blues. To find out more about the new reissue of Josh White's "Josh At Midnight," please visit horizonrecords.net.

Friday, June 24, 2016

CD Review: New Heavy Metal Music Arriving From Third Ion, Tyfon's Doom And Warfather

Canadian progressive metal band Third Ion return with their second album in as many years titled "Biolith." Their first album paid tribute to the history of home video games, but this new release has a more intense, mature sound. Beginning with "State Of Flux," the new eight-song release features Dave Padden (Annihilator) on vocals following the departure of Tyler Gilbert following the release of their debut album "13/8 Bit." The technique and musicianship are on full-display during "Cosmic Delusion," while the energy of "Biolith" will get your blood pumping with it's hardcore metal sound. The music gets a little jazzy on the low-key tones of "Status Undetermined," before wrapping up the album with the buzzing tempo changes of the seven-minute "Temporal Divide" and the atmospheric soundscape of "Corpus Solaris." To find out more about Third Ion and their latest release "Biolith," please visit thirdion.com. 
 
Finnish heavy metal band Tyfon's Doom will be releasing their debut album "Yeth Hound" on July 8th through Gates of Hell Records (a Cruz Del Sur Music sub-label). While the songs may be new, their sound has a very nostalgic feel as they look to mirror their sound after their influences. The short five song EP begins with the title-song "Yeth Hound" as guitars electrify the songs European metal sound. The energy picks up with the growling vocals of "Still Here," before the mysticism of the prog-metal juggernaut "Gates To New Realty" take you on a journey. This new release also tacks on four bonus tracks taken from the band's 2015 demo. To find out more about Tyfon's Doom and their latest release "Yeth Hound," please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/tyfonsdoom.
 
Finally we arrive at the new album from death metal band Warfather titled "The Grey Eminence." It will be released in September and was produced by death metal icon Erik Rutan (Morbid Angel). The new album contains nine tracks, beginning with the six-minute adventure of "Orders Of The Horde" as the band stretch out their songs giving them a progressive metal feel. The thunderous rhythm of "Headless Men Can No Longer Speak" and the screeching guitars of "Judgment, The Hammer" put you right in their path of sonic destruction. The album finishes with the nearly seven-minutes of intense music of "Carnage Of The Pious" and the shear force of the "Fair And Final Warning." To find out more about Warfather and their latest release "The Grey Eminence," please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/WarFather.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

CD Review: Hot New Heavy Music Arriving In July

With July quickly arriving, the heavy metal music scene is also heating up with new independent album releases. Beginning July 1st, we get the latest album titled "Ruins" from the Canadian black metal band Iskra. After two decades together, Iskra continue put everything they have into their music. Songs like "Lawless" and "Traume" showcase depth to their sound as they bombard you with guitar riffs and aggressive drumming in order to keep your focus on their purpose of dominating the underground metal scene. They mix tempos as in "Aegis Of The Victor" to give the listener a taste of the band's progressive force in the black metal community. Also arriving at the beginning of the month is the latest release from Methra titled "Acolyte." Their motto is "making heavy music for heavy people" and this latest release is slow moving sludge metal at its best. The rumbling buzz of "Hartley's Cult" has them enjoying the slow-moving metal, while the dark, death metal appeal of "Meridian" and "Pike Warship" show that this band can certainly pick-up the tempo when necessary.
 
Arriving the following week on July 8th is the highly anticipated release from Sweden's leading progressive metal band Wolverine titled "Machina Viva." It is the band's first release through Sensory Records and is their most dynamic album to date in the band's twenty-plus career. Beginning with the fourteen-minute opener "The Bedlam Overture," Wolverine uses their experiences to their advantage as they invite the listener on a multidimensional sonic journey. The heavy rock of "Pledge" and the build-up of the nine-minute "Nemesis" showcase the full-potential of this band becoming a global phenomenon in heavy metal. Another July 8th arrival is the latest from the death metal band Lord Of War. Their new album titled "Suffer" is exactly what your ears will do when you turn the volume up high. The new eleven song release is dark and aggressive as the opening track, "Age Of Hersey" sets the stage for the rest of the album. Lord Of War deliver 45-minutes of loud, aggressive, adrenaline-pumping music that keep you engaged in their sound with songs like "Behold The Harvest" and "Carbon Based Genocide."
 
The following week brings us the latest from Ohio death metal band Fistula titled "Longing For Infection." This is a new creative peak for the band with songs like "Morgue Attendant" and "Destitute" by incorporating elements of classic metal with punk and grunge to keep their sound fresh and new. Another new release arriving July 15th is from the west coast doom metal band Castle titled "Welcome To The Graveyard." Their music has a nostalgic, seventies metal appeal as heard on the opening track "Black Widow." They deliver the perfect soundtrack for Halloween with "Welcome To The Graveyard," then pick up the tempo with the Motorhead-sounding "Flash Of The Pentagram." The band's mystical hobby comes through on the Aleister Crowley inspired "Traitors Rune." Castle are currently on tour in the U.S. through until September.
 
One of the heavy metal highlights of the summer is the debut release from Scour, featuring Philip Anselmo (Pantera), John Jarvis (Pig Destroyer), Derk Engemann (Cattle Decapitation), Chase Fraser (Continuum) and Jesse Schobel (Strong Intention). The new six-song EP will be released on July 15th through Hardcore Records on CD and vinyl. Beginning with "Dispatched," Scour displays their power as they blast their way through the songs hard-hitting, fast pace. The whole album is one quick, powerful piece of music that will make your head spin as you will find yourself replaying it over and over. Another July 15th release is the sophomore album from New York rockers Psalm Zero. Their new album titled "Stranger To Violence" is a unique version of "heavy" metal as drum machines, synthesizers and pulsating bass grooves provide the goth-like backdrop for singer Charlie Looker. The album plays like a "cinematic" musical experience with the imagery of "Reel Rain" and the electronic rhythm of "White Psyche" that sweep along the heavy metal landscape. 
 
Finally we get near the latter half of the month with new releases from Mizery and Unmerciful arriving July 22nd. San Diego-based hardcore metal band Mizery are releasing their debut album on Flashpoint Records. It features a raw, thrash metal appeal as songs like "One Kiss" and "Absolute Light" showcase the youthful energy and hunger to prove themselves. On the flipside, the new release from Unmerciful, titled "Ravenous Impulse," features nine-tracks of intense, motorized drumming and growling vocals that make this release one of the most anticipated releases of the Summer heavy metal scene. The insanely fast pace of "Abscission" and the pounding rhythm of "Sociopathic Predation" shows that Unmerciful are not fooling around on this new release as they use their fifteen years of experience to create an iconic piece of hardcore death metal for the ages. To find out more about these and other new heavy metal releases, please visit earsplitcompound.com.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

CD Review: Rival Sons Deliver Their Biggest And Best Sounds On "Hollow Bones"

The California hard rock band Rival Sons recently released their fifth studio album titled "Hollow Bones" on June 10th through Earache Records. Their sound captures the essence of the British blues/rock of the seventies with huge guitar riffs, bashing rhythms and impulsive soulful vocals.Rival Sons are currently on tour, opening for Black Sabbath on their final farewell tour.
 
The new ten-song release clocks in just over 37-minutes, but that is all the time you will need to fall in love with this new album. Beginning with "Hollow Bones, Pt. 1," guitarist Scott Holiday blows you away with his raw, grinding guitar riffs as lead singer Jay Buchanan fills the open space with his vocals. Rival Sons dig deep into the blues of "Tied Up," while drummer Michael Miley and bassist Dave Beste motor through "Thundering Voices," before Holiday rips the roof off with his electrying solo. They turn Ike & Tina's "Black Coffee" into soulful rock, injected with a shot of adrenaline in order to make the impact shock your senses. Rival Sons wrap up their new release with the nearly seven-minute hard rocking jam of "Hollow Bones Pt. 2" and a view of their gentler side with the acoustics of "All That I Want," which allows you appreciate Jay Buchanan's emotional vocals. 
 
Rival Sons will be returning to the U.S. in mid-August to continue their tour with Black Sabbath. Be sure to catch them one one of these upcoming dates. You will not be disappointed. To find out more about their new album "Hollow Bones" and for a complete list of live dates, please check out rivalsons.com.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

CD Review: Paul McCartney Makes It 100% "Pure McCartney" With New Compilation

What more can I say about Paul McCartney that hasn't been already said? He continues to strive on the road and in the studio and his latest release, "Pure McCartney" can attest to that. Released on June 10th through the Concord Music Group as a 2-CD set, 4-CD deluxe set and a 4-LP vinyl set. It gathers together all of McCartney's favorite songs from throughout his 45 year career after The Beatles.
 
The new 2-CD set features 39 of Paul McCartney's greatest hits, beginning with "Maybe I'm Amazed" and running through his 2014 single "Hope For The Future." The great thing about this new set is that is does not run in chronological order, but instead as a playlist specifically created by McCartney himself. This new set includes the new remixed versions of "Here Today" and "Wanderlust" from last year's "Tug Of War" reissue along with the 2015 remix of the single "Say, Say, Say." This set does a great job covering McCartney's entire post-Beatles releases, even including his work as one half of the Fireman (along with producer Youth) with the song "Sing The Changes."
 
The 4-CD set is geared toward McCartney's hardcore fans as it features 67 tracks, mixing in more obscure, deep tracks with his greatest hits. Placing songs like "Early Days" from his 2013 album "NEW" next to "Big Barn Bed" from his 1973 album "Red Rose Speedway." The most obscure track in the deluxe edition of this set is "We All Stand Together" from the 1984 animated feature "Rupert And The Frog Song." Also included is a booklet that features many publicity photos and outtakes from photo sessions with Linda McCartney and other photographers. Paul McCartney has said "that if half of the pleasure we had in putting this collection together communicates itself to you, we'll all be riding high!" To find out more about the newly release compilation "Pure McCartney," please visit paulmccartney.com

Monday, June 20, 2016

CD Review: New Music From The RAZ Band, MJ12, Ray Bennett And Bulgogi

Gonzo Multimedia is celebrating over 30 years of The RAZ band with a new "best of" release. Michael RAZ Rescigno has been a part of the music industry for the better part of 40 years and has played alongside some of the best musicians in the genre. Raz's style brings together punk, new wave and British blues to create a powerfully addictive sound that is sure to grab your attention.

The new 19-song release begins with the New York punk-style of "The Boy," before shifting over to the new wave rock of "Time Marches On." Former Badfinger guitarist Joey Molland lights up "Back In The Shadows" with his electrifying lead guitar and Joe Vitale (The Eagles) helps out on the seventies-style hard rock of "Tough Love." The full force of The RAZ Band is felt on the energetic punk outlet "Buck It." Stu Cook (Creedence Clearwater Revival) joins in the fun on the eighties-sounding, keyboard ballad "I Said To Myself, Self." The collection closes with a couple of live songs recorded at Madame Wong's West in Los Angeles in 1984. The small club feel works to RAZ's advantage blasting their way through the quickness of "The Times Together" and bookending this release with their debut single "The Boy" performed live. To find out more about "The Best Of RAZ," please visit gonzomultimedia.com.
 
U.K. instrumental progressive rock band MJ12 will be releasing their self-titled debut album on June 24th through Gonzo Multimedia. The new band features Brand X bassist legend Percy Jones as he makes sure his presence is known in every song on the album.  Beginning with "Call 911," the quick pace of the song carries a jazz-fusion feel to the rhythm and "Magic Mist" sounds as if it came right from the Frank Zappa songbook. This all leads up to the nine-minute sonic landscape of "Talk Time." The band's rock aspects finally shine through on the more intense feel of "Big Daddy Road," before finishing with the atmospheric tones of "Magic Mist Reprise." To find out more about MJ12 and their newly debut album, please visit gonzomultimedia.com.

Former Flash bassist Ray Bennett released his break-through solo album in 2001, just days after the tragedy of 9/11. The album titled "Whatever Falls" became a critics masterpiece for progressive rock music, but then was quickly forgotten. The original ten-song album was recently reissued to digital outlets on June 6th. The music in songs like "Torn Apart" and "Diggin With A Spoon" are timeless and the title-song embodies the adventures spirit of prog-rock. Ray Bennett has currently reformed Flash, taking over lead guitar duties. To find out more about the new re-issue of his debut solo album "Whatever Falls," please visit flash.net.co.

From Asheville, NC comes the latest album from the independent rock band Bulgogi titled "Juan Dissed The Cyclops Baby." Their experimental, progressive hard rock sound on the opener "School" is certainly interesting with its tempo changing and multiple vocals. The band combines elements of The Mothers Of Inventions with Gwar to create a uniquely appealing collection of songs. The short four-song EP closes with the seven-minute, genre-clashing sounds of "Rotten" as Bulgogi's music continues to grow on you with each listen. To find out more about Bulgogi and their latest release "Juan Dissed The Cyclops Baby," please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/bulgogimusic.

Sunday, June 19, 2016

CD/DVD Review: The Traveling Wilburys Go Digital With Their Collection

The super group known as The Traveling Wilburys were the ultimate batch of songwriters, featuring George Harrison, Bob Dylan, Tom Petty, Roy Orbison and Jeff Lynne. As they came together under the guidance of George Harrison in 1988, the band was only planning on producing one song to use as a B-side to Harrison's single "This Is Love." The song "Handle With Care" was so good that the record executives wanted an entire album from The Traveling Wilburys. Within ten days, "Volume 1" was recorded at Bob Dylan's home studio. It featured ten songs that combined the efforts of everyone involved. The album was released in late 1988 and has since gone 3x platinum in the U.S.

The group quickly reformed to re-create the magic with a follow-up album, but before writing began for the second album, iconic singer Roy Orbison had passed away. So the four remaining members turned the next album, titled "Volume 3" into a tribute to Orbison. While the album did not have the same impact as it's predecessor, it still reached number 11 on the Billboard album charts upon it's release in 1990 and has also reached platinum status in the U.S.

During the late-1990's into mid-2000, The Traveling Wilburys albums were unavailable as they went out of print and instead became collectors items. Then in 2007, Rhino Entertainment, in association with the Wilbury Record Company, re-issued the two albums in a 3-disc box set which included a DVD. It was the first time in almost a decade that The Traveling Wilburys' albums were available on CD and on vinyl. Both albums included two bonus tracks that were recorded by the band, but were left off the original albums as they were used for B-sides and for compilations. The DVD that was included featured a 25-minute documentary on "The True History Of The Traveling Wilburys." It contained home videos of the group rehearing and recording at Bob Dylan's home studio in California and George Harrison's studio in London. Plus it included five music videos for their hit singles. The box set debuted at #9 on the Billboard album charts, then quickly went into hiatus after only a few years.

On June 10th, the Wilbury Record Co. along with the Concord Bicycle Music re-issued the set on CD and for the first time digitally in all the major markets. It just proves that these albums were very special and continue to be timeless, as the next generation can appreciate what happened during that special short period of time back in 1988. To find out more about this newly released version of "The Traveling Wilburys Collection," please visit travelingwilburys.com.

Saturday, June 18, 2016

CD Review: Omnivore Recordings Introduce You To "Ladies And Gentlemen...The Bangles"

The Bangles had some of the biggest hits in the eighties with "Walk Like An Egyptian" and "Eternal Flame," but the band started out as a post-punk outfit featuring Susanna Hoffs and the Peterson sisters, Debbi and Vicki. Their original name was The Bangs, but quickly added the -les to the end of their name before issuing their first EP in 1982. Now, Omnivore Recordings revisits that early period, along with many of their demos and some live songs from their eighties heyday with the new release "Ladies And Gentlemen...The Bangles."

Collected here are 16-tracks, beginning back in 1981 with a trio of tracks from The Bangs that have long been out of print. Their youthful energy is felt in the surf-style instrumental "Bitchen Summer/Speedway" and "Getting Out Of Hand." The Bangles first self-titled EP is represented here and showcases their talents and you can hear their rise to stardom is songs like "The Real World" and "Want You." Also included on this release are some of their earliest demo recordings of cover songs like Warren Zevon's "Outside Chance" and Paul Revere And The Raiders' "Steppin' Out." The Bangles energy is definitely heard in their live performance of the song "7 & 7 Is." I only wish their were more live songs on this release, but the closing jingle "No Mag Commercial" and "The Rock & Roll Alternative Program Theme Song" are great additions to have in this set. To find out more about "Ladies and Gentlemen...The Bangles," please visit omnivorerecordings.com.

Friday, June 17, 2016

CD Review: The Avett Brothers Are Filled With "True Sadness" On New Release

The North Carolina folk/rock band The Avett Brothers have built a following the old fashion way. By putting on great live shows and releasing new music that continues to break the mold of Americana music that they have helped create over the last 16 years. On June 24th, The Avett Brothers will release their ninth studio album titled "True Sadness" on Republic Records.

The new album features a dozen songs, beginning with the gospel-infused, clap/stomp rhythm of "Ain't No Man," which is a calling for all to gather around and enjoy this new set of tunes. Their exceptional songwriting is heard in "Mama, I Don't Believe" and "Smithsonian" as The Avett Brothers continue to delivery memorable, genre-defining songs that are easy to grab hold of. They premiered "Satan Pulls The Strings" on their most recent live album, "Vol. 4," but the studio version has a bigger impact with the funk/rock backdrop, which continues into the pop/rock of "True Sadness." The iconic harmonizing between brothers Seth and Scott give strength and emotion to the lyrics of "Wish I Was" and "Fisher Road To Hollywood," as the brothers handle the songs with grace. The album finishes with the acoustic shuffle, sing-along of "Victims Of Life" and the grand orchestral delivery of "May It Last."

The Avett Brothers are currently touring the U.S. behind their new album. For a complete list of live dates and to find out more about their new album "True Sadness, please visit theavettbrothers.com.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

CD Review: The Hollow Trees Welcome You With "Hello Friend" & Doctor Noize "Crashes The Symphony"

From L.A. comes the latest release from the classic country/bluegrass band The Hollow Trees. Their new album titled "Hello Friend" will be released on July 1st through their own independent label, Hollow Trees Records. The new 14-song set begins with the fun, light-hearted polka of "What Do You Want On Your Taco" and the New Orleans jazz flavor of "Merry Go Round." The country strumming and sing-along lyrics of "I Can't Dance (I Got Ants In My Pants)" is very addictive and the waltz of "My Metaphor" will have you tapping your toes to the rhythm. The album finishes up with the classic bluegrass romp of "Poor Papa" and the sweet, gentle sounds of "The Harmony Hills." To find out more about The Hollow Trees and their latest release "Hello Friend," please visit thehollowtrees.com.

Arriving July 15th is the two act musical "Phineas McBoof Crashes The Symphony" about a rock 'n' roll monkey who has disappeared. It is the third release in the "Phineas McBoof" series as fans have waited four years since the last Doctor Noize release. With help from the City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra (conducted by Kyle Pickett), Grammy winning opera stars Isabel Leonard and Nathan Gunn, Metropolitan Opera veteran John McVeigh and jazz saxophonist Anton Schwartz; Doctor Noize creates an appreciation for orchestral music for kids to enjoy. The 26-track listing of "Act One" features some exceptional music and operatic singing that both kids and adults will appreciate on many different levels. The 28-track listing of "Act Two" continues the story and will keep you glued to your speakers as you learn about classical music, without even knowing. Do yourself and your kids a favor and grab a copy of "Phineas McBoof Crashes The Symphony" and enjoy this wildly exciting musical adventure. To find out more about Doctor Noize and his latest release, please visit doctornoize.com.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

CD Review: New Music From Solo Artists Rocker-T, Ed Roman, Eddy Mann And J. Allen

Reggae artist Rocker-T will be releasing his latest album "The Return Of The Tru Ganjaman" on June 17th through his own independent label. It features sixteen-songs with help from reggae legends Mykal Rose, Prezident Brown and Gappy Ranks. Beginning with "Yankee & Yarde," Rocker-T lays the groundwork for a beats-filled, dance album layered with reggae vibes as he rolls the lyrics out like a veteran hip-hop artist. Gappy Ranks joins Rocker-T for the more laid-back vibe of "Need Some" and Mama-T helps with the island groove of "Herbalist." The party fever picks-up with the "Garden Of Goodness" featuring support from Jah Wave and Ras Indio. The second half of the album features seven remixes that add more dance beats, especially in "Tru Ganjaman Megamix" and the two remixes of "One Million Matches." To find out more about Rocker-T and his latest release "The Return Of The Tru Ganjaman," please visit rocker-t.com.


Canadian singer/songwriter/musician Ed Roman recently released his latest album "Red Omen." It features thirteen songs, beginning with the up-beat, Blues Traveler-type jammy feel of the title song, "Red Omen." He adds a country vibe to "Tough Cookie," then gets his southern rock groove going for "I Am Love." He showcases the wonderful harmonies of "Time Itself," before going full blast punk-rock on "Clone The Sheep." This new album touches upon many different music genres, but Roman feels most at home during the country/folk sound of "Lay One Go." The album closes with an extended mix of the up-tempo rock/pop song "I Am Love," adding a more electronics feel to the song. To find out more about Ed Roman and his latest release "Red Omen," please visit edroman.net.


American singer/songwriter/musician Eddy Mann recently released his new album "Dig Love." As a Christian artist, his music has inspired many of his followers who have seem him perform live. His songs are uplifting and spirited, beginning with the acoustic country/rock of "Rise Up" and the folk/funk of "I'm Setting My Mind On You." The six-minute "Love Is Splendiferous" is where you see his talents shine as he delivers one of his career highlights with this perfect blend of words and music. His new ten-song finishes with the gentle country ballad "There's A Lot Of You In Me" and the spirited acoustics of "Another Trip Around The Sun." To find out more about Eddy Mann and his latest release "Dig Love," please visit eddymann.com.


American independent folk singer/songwriter J. Allen recently released his latest album "Worry Not." It features six songs that feature Allen singing amongst a stark backdrop of acoustics and a slight keyboard, which allows his vocals to take the spotlight. The gentle folk of "Worry Not" and the storied lyrics of "Bring Her Back Home" showcases the potential in Allen's songs. The Americana vibe of "Fall Out Of Love" should have Allen get noticed as one of America's premier indie-folk artists. To find out more about J. Allen and his latest release "Worry Not," please visit jallenmusic.com.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

CD Review: Johnny Normal Relives The Adam And The Ants Classic "Kings Of The Wild Frontier"

U.K. new wave rock band Adam And The Ants had a major hit with their second album "Kings Of The Wild Frontier." It topped the charts in their home country and they began to make a name for themselves here in the U.S. Now 35 years later, electronic/post-punk rocker Johnny Normal is reviving the album with a new complete makeover, with the help of original Adam And The Ants guitarist Marco Pirroni.

The twelve-song album begins with the dark, synthesizer-fueled rhythm of "Dog Eat Dog." Pirroni steps in to lend a hand on the dance/pop rhythm of "Ant Music" and the electronic punk sound of "Feed Me To The Lions." While Johnny's vocals may not reach the heights of Adam Ant's, he does his best on "Ants Invasion" and "Kings Of The Wild Frontier," while Pirroni's guitar continues to make it's presence known, giving a rock edge to the songs electronic dance rhythms. The intensity of "Don't Be Square (Be There)" sounds like its from the industrial rock revolution of the late-seventies, while "Making History" is modern electro-pop gold. To find out more about Johnny Normal's latest release "Kings Of The Wild Frontier," please visit johnnynormal.net

Monday, June 13, 2016

CD Review: New Rock From Underground Imports Illyria And The Velvetiens

From Perth comes the self-titled debut album from the black metal band Illyria. Their new nine-song release begins with the grand seven-minute epic "Cold Summer" as their music combines death metal energy with symphonic elements. They will blast you away with the sheer force and speed of "Temptation," then they hit a more mainstream metal sound with their new addictive single "Sarim." They stick to that working formula with the power of "Wonder" and the intense build-up of "Origins" as Illyria are looking to conquer the world of metal in one swift stroke. To find out more about Illyria and their new debut album, please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/illyriaofficial.

Canadian modern alternative rock band The Velvetiens recently released their latest album last month titled "A Hot Second With The Velvetiens." The EP was originally released in April of 2015 on cassette only, but has been reworked in the studio and re-released for the first time digitally and on CD. The new six-song release begins with the raw, grunge-like swing of "Monica Louise" as they tap into a post-punk sound on this album opener. They pull together a mellow, sixties vibe on "Hanging From The Ceiling," before the slow-build up of "Shimmy Shake" and the fun, garage rock appeal of "Sunhat." To find out more about The Velvetiens and their latest release "A Hot Second With The Velvetiens," please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/TheVelveteins.

Sunday, June 12, 2016

CD Review: New Albums From Singer/Songwriters Michael Fracasso And Tommy Womack

From Austin, TX comes the latest release from singer/songwriter Michael Fracasso titled "Here Comes The Savages." It features thirteen tracks made up of originals and cover songs as Fracasso adds his own style in order to make them feel like his own. Beginning with "Say," his voice is silky smooth as the lyrics are easy to follow along a gentle rock backdrop. He follows with the acoustic strumming of "Open," before heading into the first cover song of the album, Brian Wilson's "Caroline, No." Fracasso slows the tempo of the song way down in order to make it into a lush ballad. His storied lyrics take center stage on the mellow tone of "Boy In The Bubble" and adds a funk/rock groove to The Rascals' "How Can I Be Sure." His bluesy side comes out during "You Don't Love Me (No, No, No)" and turns the punk classic "You Can't Put Your Arms Around A Memory" into a piano ballad. The album closes with a spot on, rock 'n' roll cover of The Kinks' "Better Days," which gives the album one last jolt of energy. To find out more about Michael Fracasso and his latest release "Here Comes The Savages," please visit michaelfracasso.com.

Fellow singer/songwriter Tommy Womack will be releasing his new album "Namaste" on June 24th. It features eleven tracks that were inspired by his two near-death experiences. Beginning with the sixties soul of "Angel," his words are given such meaning as he is singing with emotion. Womack has a little fun with the lyrics of "Comb Over Blues" and draws inspiration for "End Of The Line" from classic songwriters like John Prine and Ray Davies. He tackles the Christian religion with an open mind in the lyrics of "God Part III" draped across a country music background. The dark rock tones of " I Almost Died" are spoken from true life experiences and a live version of "Nashville" feel like beat poetry as Womack pours all his feelings out in this "work-in-progress." The album closes with the gentle folk sound of "It's A Beautiful Morning" that is given more truth as Womack sings from the heart. To find out more about Tommy Womack and his latest release "Namaste," please visit tommywomack.com.

Saturday, June 11, 2016

CD Review: Relive Your "Favorites" From 10,000 Maniacs And Rock Big With The Kingbees

The alternative-pop band 10,000 Maniacs are celebrating their 35th anniversary with a new live album titled "Playing Favorites." It was released on June 3rd through Omnivore Recordings and features a set of greatest hits that is sure to please fans both new and old. Beginning with "What's The Matter Here?" and "Like The Weather," the 10,000 Maniacs sound renewed performing these classic tunes. Lead singer Mary Ramsey (who has been in the band since the mid-nineties) fills the role perfectly of the absent Natalie Merchant on songs like "Trouble Me" and "Can't Ignore The Train." None of the fourteen songs on this new release is from the last two decades as the 10,000 Maniacs stick to their well-known hits. The highlight of the set is their atmospherics, seven-minute jam of "Stockton Gala Days" and their popular cover of "Because The Night." They wind down their set with the fun, uplifting sounds of "Candy Everybody Wants" and "These Are Days," before finishing with the punk-like energy of "My Mother The War" from the band's debut album.

The last live album from the 10,000 Maniacs was released to celebrate the band's 25th anniversary. With such a great live sound, let's hope that don't wait another 10 years to release their next live album. The 10,000 Maniacs are currently on tour in the U.S. For a complete list of live dates and to find out more about their new live album "Playing Favorites," please visit maniacs.com.

Also celebrating it's 35th anniversary is the second album from The Kingbees titled "The Big Rock." The Kingbees took part in the rockabilly revival of eighties, led by the Stray Cats, but were quickly dismissed when their albums failed to reach the same heights as the Stray Cats. Their self-titled debut album was re-issued last year by Omnivore Recordings and the label follows that up with re-issuing their second album "The Big Rock."

The Kingbees continued their rockabilly flavor with the title song "The Big Rock" and "She Ain't My Baby," but added an eighties, punk-rock flair to "Let Myself Go." They original twelve track album is filled to the brim with energy as displayed in "Right Behind You Baby" and "Rockin' My Life Away" and now has four bonus tracks to help flesh out this new re-issue. The bonus tracks consist of songs recorded by The Kingbees for lead singer/guitarist Jamie James' own record label Last Minute Productions, but were never officially released. The songs continue the rockabilly sound that The Kingbees are known for, but with a looser feel as the pressure to create for the record company was gone by that time. To find out more about the newly re-issued version of The Kingbees' album "The Big Rock," please visit omnivorerecordings.com.

Friday, June 10, 2016

CD Review: Andy Samberg Brings Out His Inner "Popstar" And Sam Cohen Just Says "Cool It"

Former Saturday Night Live alum Andy Samberg is starring as the lead in his own movie titled "Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping." It is a parody of a music documentary that follows his character, Conner4Real through the ups and downs of his short musical career. What is even more exciting than the movie, is the soundtrack, which features songs performed by The Lonely Island (Samberg's music group) along with fellow artists Adam Levine, Seal and Linkin Park to name a few.
 
The new 28-track release begins with Levine lending his iconic vocals to the addictive pop beats of "I'm So Humble" and P!nk joins in on the hip-hop lyrics of "Equal Rights" as The Lonely Island spew out enough lyrics to fill every second of the song with words. Most of the music on this soundtrack are comedic pop songs that look to smash all of the barriers between right and wrong as in "Bin Laden" and "Ibitha." Nu-metal band Linkin Park turn "Things In My Jeep" into a fun rock song that becomes very addictive. Seal tries to give the soundtrack some substance with the ballad "Ashley Wednesday," but that quickly gets swept away by unimpressive songs like "Donkey Roll" and "Me Likey Dat." The Lonely Island will look to continue their comedic success with the release of "Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping." To find out more about about this album, please visit popstarmovie.com.

American singer/songwriter/musician/producer Sam Cohen recently released his debut solo album "Cool It" through fellow producer Dance Mouse's own 30th Century Records label. Cohen recently wrapped up a tour with White Denim, he also produced Kevin Morby's critically-acclaimed album "Singing Saw" and performed on the Grateful Dead tribute album "Day Of The Dead." After all this, he still found time to put together ten songs, beginning with the album's lead single "Let The Mountain Come To You," which has a modern alternative, swirling psychedelic feel. His amazing songwriting shines in the electronic folk/rock delivery of "Pretty Lights" and the quiet soulfulness of "Unconditional Love." The starkness of "Don't Shoot The Messenger" is a great balance to the layered, over-polished sound of "Last Dream." The album finishes with the experimental sounds of "Midnight Conqueror" and the slow-moving blues of "El Dorado." To find out more about Sam Cohen and his latest release "Cool It," please visit his Facebook page at facebook.com/samcohenmusic.

Thursday, June 9, 2016

CD Review: Aerosmith Guitarists Whitford & St. Holmes Team Up For A "Reunion"

Current and former Aerosmith guitarists Brad Whitford and Derek St. Holmes are teaming back up to release a new album titled, "Reunion" and hitting the road, opening for Whitesnake. It has been 30 years since Whitford/St. Holmes collaborated for their debut album and this latest release shows how quickly that time flew by.

Their new nine-song release begins with the big guitar riffs of "Shapes" as Derek St. Holmes's vocals sound better than ever. The two combine their guitar talents for the country sounds of "Tender Is The Night," while Whitford leads the way, blazing a trail with his guitar during "Rock All Day." The rawness of their heavy classic rock sound shines through on "Hell Is On Fire," before finishing with the funky rhythm of "Gotta Keep On Movin'" and "Flood Of Lies," which sound like a late-seventies outtake from Aerosmith's "Draw The Line" album. 

Whitford/St. Holmes will be on the road for the month of June before a couple of heading shows at the beginning of July. For a complete list of live dates and to find out more about their new album "Reunion," please visit whitfordstholmes.com.

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

CD Review: Foghat Are "Under The Influence Of Their New Album & The Temperance Movement Poke The "White Bear"

The English rock band, Foghat are best known for their high-powered seventies rockers "Slow Ride" and "Fool For The City." Their career has lasted over 45 years and they are celebrating the 40th anniversary of their hit single, "Slow Ride" with their latest album "Under The Influence." It features a mix of new and cover songs and will be released on June 24th. The current line-up of the band has been together now over a decade and they appear to be as strong as ever, still delivering classic hard rock grooves with a big bang sound.
 
The new twelve-song release begins with guitars blazing on the title song "Under The Influence" and the stomping rhythm of "Ghost." Foghat get a little bluesy with the classic rockabilly feel of "She's Got A Ring In His Nose" and inject a shot of adrenaline into Marvin Gaye's "I Heard It Through The Grapevine." They push the pedal to the medal for the up-beat driving tunes "Made Up My Mind" and "Hot Mama," which brings back that classic Foghat sound from the seventies. The album closes with a remake of the their biggest hit, "Slow Ride" featuring original bassist Nick Jameson. Foghat are currently on tour in the U.S. To find out more about their latest release "Under The Influence," please visit foghat.net.

From the U.K. comes the sophomore album titled "White Bear" from rockers The Temperance Movement. They have been chosen on a couple different occasions to open for The Rolling Stones and their break-through single "Take It Back" cracked the top 10 on the Billboard Mainstream Rock singles chart last spring.
 
Their new release features a dozen tracks of raw energy poured into each song, beginning with the grunge/punk-like romp of "Three Bulleits." They work "Get Yourself Free" into a classic hard rock groove as this band sounds experienced well beyond their years. The Temperance Movement turn the energy up a notch with the pounding rhythm of "Modern Massacre" as Phil Campbell's vocals become the icing on the cake. Their sound takes a southern turn with the title-song "White Bear," before adding a bit of funk into the hard rock mix of "Oh Lorraine." They let up on the attack with the rock ballad "I Hope I'm Not Losing My Mind" and then close the album with the laid-back, country/rock vibe of "Time Won't Leave." To find out more about The Temperance Movement and their latest release "White Bear," pleas visit thetemperancemovement.com.

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

CD Review: New Music Arriving From Another Lost Year, Anton Vezuv, Yes Sun Yes And Rodeo

American hard rock band, Another Lost Year return with their new sophomore studio album "Alien Architect." It features a dozen tracks that will help solidify the notion that this is one of the premier rock bands in America. Beginning with a spoken-word introduction, Another Year Lost warm up in the background, before blasting into the album's lead single "Wolves" as the intense, adrenaline-fueled track will demand your attention. They keep the energy flowing through "Bastard Sons" and "Trigger Finger," before pulling back the reigns for the acoustic strumming of "He Took Beautiful Away." After the power ballad "Memories," Another Year Lost give one last blast of power with the thunderous delivery of "We All Die Alone" and the quick pace of "Holding On Letting Go." Another Year Lost will be on tour this summer, performing alongside Bret Michaels, Vince Neil, Steven Tyler and Papa Roach. To find out more about their new album "Alien Architect," please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/AnotherLostYear.

Hungarian rock band Anton Vezuv also recently released their sophomore album "Lay Low Butterfly." It features six songs, beginning with the slow blues of "Like A Broken Heart." Their music will not overpower you, but instead invite you in the warm tones of "Versions" and the jazzy piano ballad "Out Of Love." They save the best for last with "God Knows" as some slide guitar highlights the worldly feel of the song's melody. To find out more about Anton Vezuv and their latest release "Lay Low Butterfly," please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/antonvezuv.

Next from Austin, TX comes the new concept album from Yes Sun Yes titled "The Siege Of Austin." The new album tells the fictional tale of giant robots taking over the city of Austin and Yes Sun Yes is there to save the day. Beginning with "Intro," Yes Sun Yes slowly build up the story, before going full-blown rock with the guitar riffs of "The Prophecy, Revealed." Their sound on "Dear God, What A Mess" draws similarities to Barenaked Ladies, while Yes Sun Yes try their hand at a pop with the contagious harmonies of "Only Theoretical (A Bad Plan Is Better Than No Plan)." The band give their battle cry with "To War!," then finish off the attack with the 311/island vibe of "The Final Confrontation (Cowards)." To find out more about Yes Sun Yes and their latest release "The Siege Of Austin," pleas visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/yessunyesband.

Finally, from Already Dead Tapes & Records is the debut album from Rodeo titled "Dust Bowl." It is quoted as being the best soundtrack to a Spaghetti Western movie that was never made. The new fourteen-song release is filled with atmospheric soundscapes that paint the perfect setting in your mind, beginning with "Ghost Town" as lone strings lead the way. The subtleties in their music sets the stage as you anticipate what's to come from "Tumbleweed" and "No Man's Land." The southern swagger of "Ride Across The Border" and the Latin-style rockabilly of "Drive" allows the perfect backdrop to create your own soundtrack with your memories. The album wraps up with the dark piano overtones of "Funeral" and the quiet sparkle of "Messages." To find out more about Rodeo and their latest release "Dust Bowl," please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/rodeomusic.

Monday, June 6, 2016

CD Review: New Country/Folk Albums From Chet O'Keefe And Auburn

American singer/songwriter Chet O'Keefe recently released his new long-awaited new album "Because Of You." His experience and expertise play perfectly into the country/folk storytelling of his new ten-song album. Beginning with "Not Drunk Yet," Chet's vocals have an aged, weathered sound it them as he becomes the workingman's Bob Dylan. The stories of "True Love" and "Goin' Downtown" remind us of John Prine's amazing songwriting as Chet paints the perfect picture with his words. He warms your heart with the country ballad, "Oh Angel," before closing the album with the classic, nostalgic feel of "Talking Kerryville Blues." To find out more about Chet O'Keefe and his latest release "Because Of You," please visit chetokeefe.com.

The U.K. country, acoustic-pop band Auburn are prepared to release their new album "Love & Promises" on June 17th. It features star singer Liz Lenten and her iconic, angelic voice spread across a dozen new tracks. Beginning with "Asleep," the album begins slowly with the gentle treading of this country waltz. The music floats on by, led by Liz's heart-warming vocals in "Love & Promises" and fellow label mate Chet O'Keefe duets with her on the acoustic love song "Cross The Deep Atlantic." Liz and the band swing under the "Ivory Moon" and quietly play a "Stupid Game," before closing with the spaghetti western sounds of "State Of Grace." To find out more about Auburn and their latest release "Love & Promises," please visit auburn.org.uk.