Sunday, July 31, 2016

CD Review: The Numero Group Release Their Own "Afterschool Special" Compilation

Back in early 1970's, the Jackson 5 became household names with their number one singles "ABC" and "I'll Be There" and record labels were jumping on the bandwagon, trying to sign the next big kid star in music. While none of them ever became as big as the Jackson 5, many of them have made an impact on soul music in the seventies. A new compilation being released in September by The Numero Group includes 19 of these great hidden soul gems titled "Afterschool Special: The 123s of Kid Soul."

Beginning with the playground sing-along of "I'm A Special Kid," by the Bethlehem Center Children's Choir, you instantly fall in love with the innocence of this release. The soul of the seventies hits the right chords with the Scott Three delivering "Runnin' Wild (Ain't Gonna Help You)" and Cash's "I Love You Still." The heart of the Jackson 5 is heard in the smooth vocals of Next Movement's "Every Where You Go" and the drug free message of "I'm Free, No Dope For Me" from The Dynamics is so simple you find yourself singing it to yourself in English and in Spanish. The kids know how to get down with the dance rhythms of "Funky Breakdown" by Little Man & The Inquires and "It's Time For Love" from Soul Emotions & Co. The album closes with Nancy Dupree With A Group Of Youngsters telling us the story of "James Brown" as if they were in a school choir. To find out more about "Afterschool Special: The 123s Of Kid Soul," please visit numerogroup.com.

Saturday, July 30, 2016

CD Review: The Turtles Get Boxed Up With New 6-CD Set And New Best Of Collection

During the sixties, The Turtles were one of the biggest band's on the planet with their hit singles "You Baby," "Elenore" and "She'd Rather Be With Me." From 1965 to 1970, they produced a string of chart toppers that ranks with some of the best. The one song that makes The Turtles music immortal is the unforgettable "Happy Together," which knocked The Beatles' "Penny Lane" out of the #1 spot on the singles chart in 1967.

Their original albums have been long out-of-print for over a decade, leaving fans with only greatest hits compilations to enjoy. Now their albums will get the re-release they deserve on August 19th through FloEdCo to celebrate the band's 50th anniversary. Two monumental releases with bring the band's music to their fans. First as a six-CD box set which collects the band's studio albums between 1965 to 1970 along with a "wealth" of bonus material. The band's first three albums ("It Ain't Me Babe," "You Baby" and "Happy Together") will be presented in both their stereo and mono versions. The remaining three albums ("The Turtles Present The Battle Of The Bands," "Turtle Soup" and "Wooden Head") will be released along with rare, previously unreleased bonus tracks.

Along with the six-CD box set, FloEdCo will be releasing a two-CD "best of" collection titled "All The Singles," which collects the A and B sides of every single released between 1965 - 1970. Beginning with their cover of Bob Dylan's "It Ain't Me Babe," each song is pared with it's flipside featuring 48-songs spread across two discs. Each song is presented in its original mono or stereo mix, including some that have never been issued on CD.

Listening to this set, you will remember how good The Turtles were during the late-sixties. Whether covering Bob Dylan or Warren Zevon or singing their originals, The Turtles were guaranteed to delivery songs that defined a generation in music. Included with the two-CD set is a 20-page booklet that describes every song in the "All The Singles" compilation as band members Howard Kaylan and Mark Volman add their recollections on each single. To find out more about new box set and "best of" compilation from The Turtles, please visit manifesto.com

Friday, July 29, 2016

CD Review: Afroman Is Just "Happy To Be Alive" With His New Album

American hip-hop artist Afroman is best-known for the song "Because I Got High," one of the top-selling singles in 2001. His career has latest for over 15 years and he just released his sixteenth album titled "Happy To Be Alive" on July 8th through X-Ray Records. Always an advocate for marijuana, this album will not make you change your mind about him since at least four of the songs talk about getting "high." 
 
The beats come out booming with the opening track "Keep On Hustling," speaking about what he had to do in the early days to make a buck. Part of Afroman's fame comes from his crazily comical lyrics backed by an infectious rhythm as in "Smokin Hay," but the music of "High On The Highway" and "Beat Of Life" are contagious and undeniable. Afroman features four of his classic songs from his early albums newly recorded, including "Because I Got High" and "Crazy Rap (Colt 45 & 2 Zig Zags)." He closes his new album with "Christmas Time," a rap about growing up and celebrating the holiday broke, without money, but making the best of what they had. To find out more about Afroman and his latest release "Happy To Be Alive," please visit afromanmuzzicc.com.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

On The Record - Music: Featuring Singer Bruce Lamont From The Led Zeppelin Tribute Band "Led Zeppelin 2"

One of the premier Led Zeppelin tribute bands, Led Zeppelin 2, will be performing on July 31st at the Mohegan Sun Casino Wolf Den, before heading out on tour with The Australian Pink Floyd Show. Lead singer Bruce Lamont talks with us about his favorite Led Zeppelin songs and his love for classic hard rock music in this latest podcast episode.

CD Review: New Music From Singer/Songwriters Jesse Dayton, Erin Hill And Alexander

Arriving in September is the latest album from Texas singer/songwriter Jesse Dayton titled "The Revealer." He averages about 180 shows a year and has built-up a cult following around the globe. His new twelve-song release begins with the guitar-boogie of "Daddy Was A Badass" as Dayton surrounded himself with a group of friends that help him create this great new Americana, Tex-Mex rockabilly sound. He speeds up the rhythm with the punk-like fury of "Holy Ghost Rock N Roller" and brings back the classic outlaw country sounds of "Eatin' Crow & Drinkin' Sand." Dayton's folk-blues storytelling lyrics shine through the acoustic strumming of "Mrs. Victoria (Beautiful Thing)," before closing his album with the honky-tonk sound of "Match Made In Heaven" and finger-picking folk gem "Big State Motel." Jesse Dayton will be on tour this fall with The Supersuckers and Reverend Peyton's Big Damn Band after a late-summer solo jaunt along the west coast. For a complete list of tour dates and to find out more about his new album "The Revealer," please visit jessedayton.com.

Singer/songwriter/musician/actor Erin Hill has worked with many of the greats in the music industry like Kayne West, Cyndi Lauper, Enya and Randy Newman. She also appeared in numerous television shows like HBO's "The Chris Rock Show" and PBS's "American Masters." Her latest album titled "Harp Town" features eighteen songs that not only showcase her wonderful angelic voice, but also her skills as a harpist. On her latest release, she reinterprets many classic songs that are given new life in this special setting. Early standout tracks are Hill's versions of the Smashing Pumpkins' "Disarm" and Adele's "Someone Like You." She revives the Til Tuesday classic "Voices Carry" and finds the perfect balance for the Kansas original "Dust In The Wind." She delivers the innocence of Jeff Buckley's "Hallelujah" and lets her vocals soar in the operatic tone of "O Mia Babbino Caro." The album finishes with pop feel of "Speechless" and the steady flow of Rihanna's "Stay." To find out more about Erin Hill and her latest release "Harp Town," please visit erinhill.com.

From Nashville comes the self-titled debut album from singer/songwriter Alexander. It features five songs, beginning with the pop beats of "Need You To Know" as Alexander's vocals hit the right vibe for mainstream radio success. The music of his debut single "Can't Sleep Without You" is contagious, mixing together what's hot on the radio today with his undeniable lyrics. The short EP closes with the acoustic pop of "Melody Of You" and energy build-up of "Hush Hush" as fans can't for what's coming next from this rising artist. To find out more about Alexander, please visit alxandermusic.com.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

CD Review: New Music From Indie-Artists Don DiLego, Kate Brown And Mercy

New from Velvet Elk Records is the latest release from singer/songwriter Don DiLego titled "Magnificent Ram A." It features ten tracks that were inspired by the sessions from his last studio album "Western & Atlantic," and were recorded in full takes on analog tape with all its imperfections keep in for authenticity. Beginning with "Karma King," Don invites you in with this Americana announcement. The acoustics of "A Wishful Poem" hark back to the early days of folk when the words expressed more meaning than the music. He delivers the pop tones of "I'm On Fire" with a loose, fun feel, while "Go Pack Your Suitcase" has a smooth, swinging blues-rhythm. The album finishes with the build-up, sing-along of "Don't Bury Me Alive" and the stark, intimacy of "Idiot Heart." To find out more about Don DiLego and his latest release Magnificent Ram A," please visit dondilego.com.

Country singer/songwriter Kate Brown recently released her new album "Water From Ashes" on July 8th. The new six-song EP begins with the steady rocker "Cartwheel" as her vocal tone and delivery reminds us of Melissa Etheridge. She pours her emotions into the country acoustics of "Damned Ol' Jesus," then delivers the blues of "Come On" as her vocals soar. This short new release finishes with the angelic country/folk of "Troubled Man" and the inspirational gospel feel of "Weepin'." To find out more about Kate Brown and her latest release "Water From Ashes," please visit katebrownmusic.com.

From New York comes the debut album from Mercy simply titled "EP." It features only five songs, but her music and voice will leave a lasting impression. Beginning with "Ice Cream," Mercy has a sultry sound to her soft vocals among a jazzy backdrop. The music of "Love Dust" slinks on by, before the smokey club sound of "Lioness" fills the air. This short new release closes with the disco/dance vibe of "Evil Baby" as Mercy looks to expand her sound. To find out more about Mercy and her new "EP," please visit mercy-ep.bandcamp.com.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

CD Review: The Chris Robinson Brotherhood "Know How You Feel" About Their New Album

Before The Black Crowes dissolved into legendary status, lead singer/songwriter Chris Robinson already had the wheels rolling on his next project, The Chris Robinson Brotherhood. They released their first two albums within months of each other in 2012 as Robinson's palate of new songs seemed endless. Their only reason for not delivering even more albums is their relentless tour schedule which had them performing over 180 shows a year. Two years ago The Chris Robinson Brotherhood released their most successful studio album titled "Phosphorescent Harvest" and on July 29th, they will release their brand new studio album titled "Anyway You Love, We Know How You Feel."
 
The new eight-song release beings with the seven-plus minute, psychedelic funk of "Narcissus Soaking Wet" as keyboardist Adam McDougall lends his talents to the spaced-out jam. Robinson's brand of southern rock is felt in "Forever As The Moon" as the song draws upon the gospel-like chorus and feel-good groove. Guitarist Neal Casal brings along some his Grateful Dead-style chords from his side project, Circles Around The Sun, for the jammy tones of "Ain't It Hard But Fair." The beauty of Chris Robinson's songwriting is heard in the gentle swirling of "Some Gardens Green," before closing with the laid-back, sing-along, country vibe of "California Hymn." 
 
As you may have already guessed, The Chris Robinson Brotherhood are on tour, making their way east for a string of shows, before heading back out west in September. For a complete list of live dates and to find out more about their new album "Anyway You Love, We Know How You Feel," please visit chrisrobinsonbrotherhood.com.

Monday, July 25, 2016

CD Review: Omnivore Recordings Reminds Us Of Velvet Crush's "Pre-Teen" Years

Rhode Island, indie-rock band Velvet Crush released their debut album in 1991 on Creation Records. They were signed based on the success of their cover of Teenage Fanclub's "Everything Flows," but it would be their second album "Teenage Symphonies To God" that would make American audiences stand up and take notice of the band. The Velvet Crush would break up and reform again before the end of the decade, creating four more albums until going on hiatus in 2004.
 
Their latest release titled "Pre-Teen Symphonies" gathers eight previously unreleased demos from their classic second album along with eight songs recorded live in 1994 at the Cabaret Metro in Chicago. Beginning with their hit single "Hold Me Up," this version is as good as the one officially released. The recordings are a little more raw on "My Blank Pages" and "Turn Down," which gives the song's a more spontaneous feel. The live songs show the power of the band with the songs "Window To The World" and "Atmosphere," before turning up the energy with the punk-like delivery of "This Life Is Killing Me." They close with a live version of "Hold Me Up" and a cover of 20/20's "Remember The Lightning." This new compilation was released on July 22nd through Omnivore Recordings. To find out more about Velvet Crush's "Pre-Teen Symphonies," please visit omnivorerecordings.com.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

CD Review: New Roots Music Reigns "On Top Of Old Smoky" Along With The Coal Men And The Grahams

Arriving August 21st is the 23-song compilation "On Top Of Old Smoky: New Old-Time Smoky Mountain Music." It features new and previously unreleased songs by contemporary roots artists inspired by the work of Joseph S. Hall in the Great Smoky Mountains. Many of the songs on this release have become or used as the bases of nursery rhymes and lullabies. Beginning with "On Top Of Old Smoky," artist Carol Elizabeth Jones sings it accapella as you follow her every word of this familiar tale. Davit Holt brings in the classic country swing of "The Girl I Love Don't Pay Me No Mind" and Corbin Hayslett strums that banjo for the quick pace of "Something's Always Sure To Tickle Me." A couple of songs on this compilation that have stood the test of time are "Man Of Constant Sorrow" performed here by John Lilly and "Goin' Down The Road Feelin' Bad" by Amythyst Kiah with Roy Andrade. Dolly Parton, one of the biggest names in country music, sings the blues of "Little Rosewood Casket" as this song is very dear to her heart. The compilation closes with Dale Jett and Hello Stranger performing The Carter Family staple "Will The Circle Be Unbroken."

Included in this release is a 40-page booklet featuring an essay from Ted Olsen, professor of Appalachian Studies and Bluegrass, Old-Time and Country Music Studies at East Tennessee State University. Also included are lyrics to every song along with a description of each song. To find out more about this newly released compilation "On Top Of Old Smoky: New Old-Time Smoky Mountain Music," please visit smokiesinformation.org.

From Nashville comes the latest from the roots-rock trio, The Coal Men titled "Pushed To The Side." It features a dozen tracks of truthful, honest music. Beginning with "Depreciate," you are swept up by the emotion poured into their music. The song sounds like it could have fit on Bruce Springsteen's "Devils And Dust" album. The country swagger of "Pushed To The Side" slowly reveals its storied lyrics as you hang onto every word. They pick the tempo up with the country-rocker "The Payoff" and bring in the blues of "Willy Jett," before returning the gentle folk appeal of "Travis." The album finishes with the rockabilly swing of "Speeding Like A Demon" and the tale of "The Singer (In Louisville)." To find out more about The Coal Men and their latest release "Pushed To The Side," please visit thecoalmen.com.

The country-roots band The Grahams continue to roll out new items recorded from their career-defining album "Glory Bound." Originally released in April 2015, The Grahams created something special, bringing together their experiences of riding the rails and recording the songs they wrote based on their experiences and there to capture it all was film director Cody Dickinson (founding member of the North Mississippi All-Stars). The new documentary titled "Rattle The Hocks," shows footage of The Grahams, Doug and Alyssa, traveling to the heartlands of America, including Memphis and New Orleans, explaining their feelings of being honored to have this experience.

In between their stops, the film shows footage of the band recording in the studio with some of the greats including Luther Dickinson, Lucero, Duwayne Burnside and Alvin Youngblood Hart. The documentary features candid interviews and on the spot recordings that give an authenticity to their music. The whole short 30-minute documentary is a great addition to an already amazing album as The Grahams continue to deliver some of the greatest country-roots music of today. To find out more about "Rattle The Hocks," please visit thegrahamsmusic.net.

Saturday, July 23, 2016

CD Review: New Albums From Guitar Wizards Eric Gales And Gregg Kofi Brown

American blues-rock guitarist Eric Gales recently released a new live album titled "A Night On The Sunset Strip." The new release is to celebrate his 25th year in the music industry. It was recorded at the legendary Viper Room in Los Angeles, CA as Gales brings some southern blues to the west coast. Beginning with "Make It There," Gales wastes no time heating things up with his amazing guitar solos and bluesy vocals. He brings in a little Texas-shuffle to "The Change In Me" and draws from his back catalog with rock gems "Block The Sun" and the nine-minute guitar lesson of "The Open Road." Gales showcases his band with their own solo spots before heading into the blues-funk of "1019." The album closes with a cover of The Rolling Stones' "Miss You," featuring Raphael Saadiq (The Roots, John Legend) on bass. This new live collection was released on July 8th through Cleopatra Records in a  CD/DVD combo. To find out more about Eric Gales and "A Night On The Sunset Strip," please visit cleorecs.com.

British singer/songwriter/guitarist Gregg Kofi Brown has come full circle with his latest release. A career defining anthology titled "Rock 'N' Roll And UFOs." Gregg Kofi Brown has worked along side such esteemed artists as Dominic Miller (Sting), Joe Cocker and Eric Burdon (The Animals); and has been apart of the Afro-funk band Osibisa and toured with Hanoi Rocks. His new "greatest hits" album features 17-tracks that cover his entire career. Beginning with the pop sounds of "Chasing Rainbows," he leads you through all of his aspects, including the wonderfully vulnerable unplugged version of "All The Way For You." He brings in the funk of "Nikosi B," which features The Who's longtime keyboardist John Rabbit Bundrick and speaking of The Who, included on this set is "Listening To You" performed by the cast of "Tommy" to which Gregg Kofi Brown was a member of. The new anthology features one song from his former band, Osibisa titled "Whisper In The Wind" as the reggae-funk groove delivers the song's upbeat rhythm. With so many styles included in this set, it's hard to pinpoint Brown into one category, which is great for an artist and draws together his many fans to stretch out and experience different genres. To find out more about Gregg Kofi Brown and his latest release "Rock 'N' Roll And UFOs," please visit greggkofibrown.co.uk.

Friday, July 22, 2016

CD Review: New Music From Indie-Artists Michael Todd, Bucky Hayes & The Commonwealth, Jordan Bennett And Sweet Sweet

From the plains of Oklahoma comes the debut album from singer/songwriter Michael Todd titled "Crashland." After opening for the likes of Ronnie Milsap, BJ Thomas and Sawyer Brown; Michael Todd was ready to collect his best songs together for his debut release. The new nine-song album begins with the storied folk lyrics of "The Cave," as Michael Todd invites you "down, down, down." He has fun singing the words to "French Fried Lady In Combat Boots" as his voice get powerful during the chorus, but the soulful, emotional delivery of "Shine" showcases the vulnerability in his songs. The album finishes with the laid-back sound of "Sensible Midsize Sedan" and the high-powered acoustic strumming of "The Undertow." To find out more about Michael Todd and his latest release "Crashland," please visit facebook.com/Michael-Todd-Music.
 
Next from New York City comes the debut album from Bucky Hayes And The Commonwealth titled "100 Miles To Macon," which shows that Bucky is a southern boy at heart. The new ten song release begins with the country rocker "I'll Leave The Light On" as Bucky's vocals reflect a southern version of John Mellencamp. He demands your full attention on the big bluesy guitar riffs of "Sweet June" and the up-tempo swing of "Loretta Rae." He fully engulfs the southern rock sound of "100 Miles To Macon" and showcases his softer side with "The Times You Chose To Be In My Arms," before closing with the high-energy, Americana/country rhythm of "We Gonna Get Strong." To find out more about Bucky Hayes And The Commonwealth and their latest release "100 Miles To Macon," please visit buckyhayes.com.
 
Christian artist Jordan Bennett will be releasing his acoustic-based debut album titled "Outcasts And Untouchables." His soulful vocals have the perfect blend for this rising singer/songwriter to open his album with "Stars At Night." The gentle folk delivery of "Nothing Without You" and the acoustic pop/rock of "Outcasts And Untouchables" shows that Jordan's songwriting is mature beyond his years. He closes with a reflection of his faith with "Walk With Me To The Heavens" and the up-beat strumming of "The Great Unknown." To find out more about Jordan Bennett and his new release "Outcasts And Untouchables," please visit facebook.com/JordanBennettBand. 
 
Finally we arrive at the latest release from the duo Sweet Sweet. Their new album titled "In Tandem" featuring an array of styles, including country, folk, rock and that's just in the opener "To The Stars." The new five-song EP contains the warm, gentle acoustics of "Daylight" and the Americana flow of "Remind Me." They close their new short 20-minute album with the classic Paul Simon like build-up of "Lost Kids." To find out more about Sweet Sweet and their latest release "In Tandem," please visit sweetsweetband.com.

Thursday, July 21, 2016

On The Record - Music: Features Guitarist Geo Filippides From The Beatles Tribute Band "Number 9"

Meriden musician, Geo Filippides talks with us about his love of the music of The Beatles and about his trio of upcoming concerts in Meriden on July 29th in Downtown Meriden, August 27 at Hubbard Park and September 10 as part of the grand opening of the new Meriden Green.

CD Review: New Heavy Metal Releases Arriving In August From Mos Generator, The Company Corvette, Integrity, Detroying The Devoid & Friend Or Foe

Washington riff-rockers Mos Generator will be releasing their latest full-length album "Abyssinia" on August 5th. It features ten tracks of classic hard rock grooves that the band nail perfectly. Beginning with "Strangest Times," you are instantly injected with energy through the song's high-powered riffs and electrifying solo. The thunderous drums of "You've Got A Right" and the thick chugging rhythm of "Easy Evil" displays the band's early influences in their latest creations. They mix tempos for the prog-metal feel of "As Above So Below," before returning to their heavy metal side with the buzzing guitars and screaming vocals of "There's No Return From Nowhere." They finish their new release with the six-minute, Pink Floydian-feel of "Outlander." To find out more about Mos Generator and their latest release "Abyssinia," please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/MosGenerator.
 
Also arriving on August 5th is the new release titled "Never Enough" from the stoner-metal band The Company Corvette. Their new seven-song release begins with the grinding six-minutes of "Foot In Mouth" and the feedback-fueled grunge of "Devilwitch." They work the classic heavy doom metal groove into "Burn Out," before finishing with the eight-minute sonic trip of "Pigeon," where metal and grunge find a common ground to roam. To find out more about The Company Corvette and their latest release "Never Enough," please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/The-Company-Corvette.
 
Next up is the 25th anniversary remaster of Integrity's debut album "Those Who Fear Tomorrow." It ranks as one of the best independent hardcore metal albums of all time and this remastered version makes the music feel timeless. This band from Cleveland, OH had the right sound at the right time as this album still resonates with fans. This new "anniversary" edition features a cleaner sound with more impact from the instruments. The booklet contains the original lyrics and also new liner notes. To find out more about this new edition of "Those Who Fear Tomorrow," please visit the band's Facebook page at facebook.com/INTEGRITY.HT.
 
Two weeks later, on August 19th comes the full-length debut album from the progressive death metal band Destroying The Devoid. The new seven-track album titled "Paramnesia" begins with the intense six-minute sonic adventure of "Chasm Of Existence" as they take you on a journey of extreme progressive-metal. They speed things up with the aggressive attack of "The Endless Cycles Of Lunacy" and the title song "Paramnesia." The album finishes with the 21-minute, three part suite of "Beyond The Dark Veil" as the members of the band combine to deliver a classic piece of heavy metal music. To find out more about Destroying The Devoid and their latest release "Paramnesia," please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/destroyingthedevoid. 
 
Richmond-based hardcore metal band Friend Or Foe will release their new five-song EP "Foe" on August 19th. Inspired by the NY hardcore punk scene, Friend Or Foe deliver a batch of hard-hitting, energetic songs that will make your head spin before you know what hit you. Beginning with "Foe Paid The Price" their sound has a nostalgic hardcore sound that makes each track a blast to listen to. To find out more about Friend Or Foe and their latest release "Foe," please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/Friend-Or-Foe.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

CD Review: New Metal Blade Records Releases From Hammers Of Misfortune & Revocation

Arriving this week are two highly anticipated heavy metal releases from Metal Blade Records. First up is the return of the west coast progressive metal band Hammers Of Misfortune with their first album in five years titled "Dead Revolution." The new seven-song release begins with "The Velvet Inquisition" as frontman Joe Hutton is in fine form, following his severe motorcycle accident. Songwriter/guitarist John Cobbett has used this time off to create some incredible pieces of music, as in the title song "Dead Revolution" and "The Precipice (Waiting For The Crash)." The new remarkable album finishes with the intense build up of "Here Comes The Sky" and the storied tale of the "Days Of '49." to find out more about Hammers Of Misfortune and their latest album "Dead Revolution," please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/hammersofmisfortune. 
 
Also arriving soon is the latest from the hardcore death metal band Revocation. Their latest album title "Great Is Our Sin" showcases the band pushing the boundaries of the genre, while continuing to keep their edge. The new eleven-song release begins with the speed and power of "Arbiters Of The Apocalypse" and the aggressive attack of "Theatre Of Horror." The thunderous rhythm of "Monolithic Ignorance" and the guitar wizardry of "Crumbling Imperium," which showcase the musical talents this band portray on this new album. Revocation wrap up their new release with the progressive metal appeal of "Profanum Vulgas," the raw energy of "Copernican Heresy" and the death metal smasher "Alter Of Sacrifice." To find out more about Revocation and their latest release "Great Is Our Sin," please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/revocation.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

CD Review: New Heavy Metal Music On The Horizon From Vanhelgd, Howling Giant, TMHM & Dark Forest

Highlighting some new heavy metal music arriving in the next month from Vanhelgd, Howling Giant, TMHM and Dark Forest. First we begin with the Swedish death metal band Vanhelgd and their latest album "Temple Of Phobos." The sound on this new release mixes together dark and mystical sounds with a hard pounding metal attack. Beginning with "Lamentation Of The Mortals," the band showcases their skills as they bring you along on a journey, while "Den Klentrogenes Klagan" features the eerie tones of an angelic chorus to add to the song's supernatural tone. The new seven-song release closes with the progressive metal groove of "Allt Hopp A r Fo rbi." To find out more about Vanhelgd and their latest release "Temple Of Phobos," please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/vanhelgd.
 
Next up is the latest from Nashville, TN rockers Howling Giant with their new four-song EP titled "Black Hole Space Wizard, Part 1." This new release has a great progressive rock sound as their music does not overpower you, but as they say in the lyrics of "Mothership," "You need to open up your mind." Their tunes are filled with riffs and have a nostalgic metal sound as featured in "Exodus Earth." The album closes with the classic seventies prog-rock feel of "Clouds Of Smoke." To find out more about Howling Giant and their latest release "Black Hole Space Wizard: Part 1," please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/howlinggiant.
 
Arriving this August is the latest release from TMHM (formerly The Man and His Machine) titled "Stage Names." It features eight-hardcore metal anthems that will definitely rattle your brain. They come right out with the pounding rhythm and screaming vocals of "Bad Luck In Belleville." The chanting chorus "18oz" and the punk-like fury of "Threadcounts" displays the quick bursts of energy that will shake your speakers. The album finishes with the Black Flag-like sound of "Better Half" and the shout-along chorus "Good Luck In Gracetown." To find out more about TMHM and their latest release "Stage Names," please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/themanandhismachine. 
 
We finish with one of England's premier folk/metal bands, Dark Forest and they will be unleashing their new career defining album, "Beyond The Veil" on August 26th through Cruz Del Sur Music. Their elements of folklore and medieval themes is the bases for this twelve-track packed album. Beginning with the seven-minute "On The Edge Of Twilight," you are instantly attracted to the band's musicianship as vocalist Josh Winnard leads you down the path of the storied lyrics. The quick pace of "Where The Arrow Falls" and the big rock delivery of "Blackthorn" displays an edginess to their music, while also an intricacy to their skills. The power of "The Wild Hunt" sums up the band's quest of heavy metal dominance as they put all their best into this song. To find out more from Dark Forest and their latest release "Beyond The Veil," please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/Darkforestuk.

Monday, July 18, 2016

CD Review: Cleopatra Records Collects Songs For The "Devilution" Of London May & The "Dark Side" Of Luna 13

American punk musician London May performed in some of the best underground punk rock bands in history. He has been associated with Samhain, Dag Nasty and even auditioned for the Circle Jerks. Cleopatra Records has gathered 15 previously unreleased tracks from eleven of London May's bands between 1982-1993 into a new compilation titled "Devilution: The Early Years."

Beginning with his first band Rat Patrol, the song "Fist Fight" features a Sex Pistols vibe as May's drums motor through the 65-second song. The music shows a more developed sound in his next band Reptile House. They display an early eighties modern punk sound in "Sleeestack Weather," while his time in Dag Nasty was short-lived but showcased how his sound had developed in the live version of "The Godfather." The only appearance of his most famous gig, drummer for the goth/punk band Samhain is a live cover of The Misfits song "To Walk The Night."

The songs on this release are raw, but show the many different sides of London May as with the alternative rock of "Shaky On The Wrong Floor" from Reuben Redding and the hardcore punk of "Nuthin'" from Lunchbox. The album closes with a pair from the hardcore metal band Distorted Pony and London May's audition for the punk band Circle Jerks. To find out more about the new compilation of rare tracks from London May, please visit cleorecs.com.

Also recently released from Cleopatra Records is the new album titled "Dark Side Of The Sun," from the deathtronic duo Luna 13. The new eight-song release takes you on a sonic journey down the mesmerizing rabbit hole. Beginning with the the dark swirling sounds and voices of "Gods Of Night," we are introduced to a different side of industrial metal music that opens up your mind along with the dubstep beats of the title-song "Dark Side Of The Sun." The rhythm speeds up as you feel trapped in the horror movie of "Doll Face" and feel the instinctual rage of "Venomous Love." The album finishes with the excitingly experimental "Swarm" and the grinding rhythm of "Try Death."

Luna 13 will make their big screen debut, performing in the upcoming horror film, "The Devil's Domain," starring Michael Madsen (Reservoir Dogs, Kill Bill). Luna 13 have a few shows scheduled out west during July and August. To find out more about their new release, "Dark Side Of The Sun," please visit facebook.com/luna13music. 

Sunday, July 17, 2016

CD Review: Marley's Ghost Release "The Woodstock Sessions" & Chelle Rose Delivers "Blue Ridge Blood"

From the west coast comes the latest album titled "The Woodstock Sessions" from Americana/Bluegrass band Marley's Ghost, who are celebrating their 30th anniversary in 2016.  It will be released on July 15 through Sage Arts and features guest Grammy-winning guitarist Larry Campbell, who also produced the album. The new thirteen-song release was recorded at Levon Helm Studios in Woodstock, NY and features many traditional songs that have been given the proper Americana treatment. Beginning with dark tones of "Blind Fiddler," you get swept up in the song's storyteller lyrics. They lighten the mood and pick-up the tempo for the bluegrass delivery of "Ain't That Trouble In Mind" and showcase wonderful harmonizing in "Run On For A Long Time." Campbell's guidance on this album is heard all over this new release as Marley's Ghost dig back to their roots on the original "Oh Sweet Wind" and on the album closer "Uncle Joe." Marley's Ghost have a handful of live shows lined up in August and September along the west coast. To find out more about their latest release "The Woodstock Sessions," please visit marleysghost.com.

From Nashville comes the latest release titled "Blue Ridge Blood" from singer/songwriter Chelle Rose. It will be released on August 5th on Rose's own label, Lil' Damsel Records. The new eleven-song release begins with the dark tones of "Paintsville Table" as Chelle Rose delivers a hard edge to her alternative country sound. The addictive stomp rhythm of "Reckon With The Devil" has a traditional blues feel, before hearing the storied lyrics of "Dammit Darlin." Fellow Nashville artist, Buddy Miller lends his vocals to the smooth country sounds of "Blue Ridge Blood," before painting the mystical picture of "Gypsy Rubye" with the searing alt-rock rhythm. The gentle acoustic folk-style of "Sing Pretty" delivers an emotional close to the album. To find out more about Chelle Rose and her latest release "Blue Ridge Blood," please visit chellerose.com.

Saturday, July 16, 2016

CD Review: Guitarist Extraordinaire Jeff Beck Comes Roaring Back With "Loud Hailer"

Legendary English guitarist Jeff Beck will be releasing his 17th studio album titled "Loud Hailer" on July 15th through Atco. It has been six years between albums for Beck and in that time, he also wrote a new book titled "BECK01" about his passion for guitars and hot rods. Soon after the release of the album, Jeff Beck will be hitting the road for a U.S. tour with Buddy Guy, which runs until the end of August.

The new eleven-song release begins with "The Revolution Will Be Televised" as you are introduced to Beck's new lead singer Rosie Bones and new guitarist Carmen Vandenberg. The intense pounding rhythm allows Beck to let his guitar explore the soundscape while Bones' spoken words play out like a news program. Rosie Bones lets loose with her iconic vocals on "Live In The Dark" as she tries to match up to Beck's outstanding solo delivery. Beck shakes the foundation with raw, fuzztoned sound of "Pull It," before bringing out the blues of "Thugs Club" and "Shame." The dual guitar attack of Beck and Vandenberg adds the perfect backdrop for Bones' earth-shaking vocals in "The Ballad Of Jersey Wives." Jeff Beck finishes his new album with the funk-fueled rhythm of "O.I.L. (Can't Get Enough Of That Sticky" and the slow, up-lifting spirited feel of "Shrine." To find out the latest happenings with Jeff Beck, including the release of his new album "Loud Hailer," please visit his Facebook page at facebook.com/jeffbeck.

Friday, July 15, 2016

CD Review: Ken Sharp Rises Up For A "New Mourning," Redleg Husky Gives Us "My Old Heart" And Milan Mumin Pleads His "Case"

Critically acclaimed author and journalist Ken Sharp recently released his latest album titled "New Mourning." It features mix of ballads and sonic adventures with help from some friends. Singer/guitarist Rick Springfield appears on the big rock beats of "Burn & Crash" and on the synthesizer-fueled, eighties feel modern rock of "Satellite." Guitarist Wally Stocker (The Babys) appears on the album's opening track "Dynamite & Kerosene" which is a great, up-tempo rocker that has an alternative/pop flair. Ken delivers pop/rock gold with "Let Be Friends" and showcases his wonderful songwriting skills on the acoustic ballad "1000 Guitars." The album finishes with the big guitar riffs of "Mr. Know It All" and the experimental soundscape of "Loser." To find out more about Ken Sharp and his latest release "New Mourning," please visit ken-sharp.com.

From Asheville, NC comes the latest release titled "My Old Heart" from Americana/country band Redleg Husky. It is the band's second full-length album and was recorded and produced in Haddam, CT. The new ten song release begins with the "down-home" vocals of Misa Giroux on "Katie" as you begin to get settled into this collection of "feel-good" music. The full band effort of "Born Along The Tracks" sounds truthful, as if it was recorded in one big circle in one take with only one mic. Redleg Husky plug in for the country, folk/rock of "Broken Down/Busted Flat," then simplify their sound once again with the gentle acoustics of "Your Favorite Hymn." The album finishes with the pure Americana vibes of "Bottle Full Of Felonies" and emotional harmonies of "My Old Heart." To find out more about Redleg Husky and their latest release "My Old Heart," please visit redleghusky.com.

Singer/songwriter Milan Mumin recently released his latest solo album "In Case One Of Them Is You" on July 8th through Plus Size Dan Productions. He is the frontman for the Serbian rock band Love Hunters, but his recently solo performances enticed him to record this new five-song EP. Beginning with "I'd Rather Be Your Fool," you'd think this was a new Tom Waits album as Mumin's vocals sounds eerily similar. He injects experience into the words of "Same Moon" as his weathered vocals delivery a realistic sound to his music. The new short release finishes with the keyboard driven pop/rock of "Uncover Me" and the more suitable "Lies And Lies And Lies" as Mumin delivers a memorable tune with storied lyrics. To find out more about Milan Mumin and his latest release "In Case One Of Them Is You," please visit his Facebook page at facebook.com/muminmilan

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Cassette Review: New Indie-Rock Releases From Pumpkin Seed, Wica Intina, Arklight & Sheep Bella Tine

From Tennessee comes the latest noise experiment from Pumpkin Seed titled "Songs From A Wooden Bell, Vol. 1" It was released in limited quantities on cassette only with the flip side containing the latest recordings from Wica Intina. Beginning with the sound collage of "Yanga Yanga," the song has so much going on that it becomes hard to follow, but the raw demo feel of "Dakotas Room/Holiday" leads to a better song structure to follow. Pumpkin Seed wrap up their side of the cassette with the lighter grunge strumming of "Signs Of The Father." 
 
Wica Intina begin with a more polished sound of the mellow acoustics of "The Remaining Tribes Move To Shiloh." The six-minute opener showcases much promise in the band's songwriting. Wica Intina paints the perfect picture with the acoustic folk storytelling of "Ballad Of The Obey," before closing with gentle starkness of "Tiny Confessions." To find out more about Pumpkin Seed and Wica Intina, please visit facebook.com/Meliphonic-Records. 
 
Another two-fer limited edition cassette comes from the Los Angeles bands Arklight and Sheep Bella Tine. Arklight only contributes four of the ten songs on this new release as their sound has a retro-grunge feel. The opener "Big Ideas" has a steady guitar riff that keeps the vocals on pace, while "Loyal Order Of Noose" has a Frank Zappa-type rock vibe attached to it. Arklight finish with the raw, monotone delivery of "Young Lovers." 
 
On the flipside is Sheep Bella Tine with their brand of atmospheric instrumental progressive-rock, beginning with "Prominence" and "Of Hybrid Figures." They capture a mood with the space-like rock sounds "The Tragic Farces" and "Of Katchina Dolls," before wrapping things up with the experimental piece "Of Nadie." To find out more about this latest release from Arklight and Sheep Bella Tine, please visit facebook.com/kerchowrecords.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

On The Record - Music: Kenny Labelle from The Diamond Collection Talks With Us About Performing Live And His Love For Neil Diamond's Music

One of the premier Neil Diamond tribute bands, The Diamond Collection, visits the Southington Green on July 20th as part their Summer Concert Series. Lead singer Kenny Labelle talks with us on his love of Neil Diamond's music and how he creates one of the ultimate Neil Diamond tribute shows.

CD Review: New Music From Indie-Artists McDougall, Foreign Talks & Massy Ferguson

Singer/songwriter McDougall recently released his eighth studio album "Reaching For Some Light." He plays most of the instruments himself on this new release and does not allow himself to be backed into a corner, creating some of the best music of his career. Beginning with "Roads," McGougall comes thumping out of the gate with this raw folk-blues number. The mood seems lighter on the up-beat swing of "Stranger On The Prairie"  and "Ten Speed" as his lyrics paint the perfect picture. McDougall breaks out the banjo for the instrumental "Cut Loose," then tells the tale of "Pitcher On The Train" with this storied words. The new eleven-song release closes with the rocking acoustic guitar instrumental "Barely Holding On" and the country/Americana vibe of "Moving Mountains." To find out more about McDougall and his latest release "Reaching For Some Light," please visit mcdougallmusic.com.

From the upper Northwest corner of the U.S. comes the sophomore album from the reggae/rock band Foreign Talks. Their new release titled "No Ceilings" expands upon the band's hook-driven debut album. The new thirteen-song release begins with the island vibe of "Cerveza" as the band's pop sound is undeniable. They add their reggae/hip-hop brand to the laid back feel of "Typhoon" and invite Myke Bogan to lay down a rap over the smooth beats of "Chocolate Vanilla." Foreign Talks follow the lead of 311 in the hip-hop/reggae/rock appeal of "Rip It Up Slow" before the light-hearted, fun approach of "Disco." They leave the reggae vibe behind on the alternative rock of "Purple" and "NuNu," before closing with big reggae bass groove of "Black Magic." To find out more about Foreign Talks and their latest release "No Ceilings," please visit foreigntalks.com.

Seattle-based rock band Massy Ferguson recently released their fourth full-length album titled "Run It Right Into The Wall." Their sound was inspired by 80's college rock radio and it certainly shows in the opening song "Gallipoli." The raw energy of their garage rock sound is refreshing among today's over-polished rock acts. The straight-up simplicity of "Santa Fe" and the throwback nostalgic feel of "Firewater" has Massy Ferguson revisiting a forgotten time in rock history. The slinky guitar of "Dogbone" gives their music a southwestern sound and "Front Page" reminds us of Bruce Springsteen's early days. The album closes with the manufactured eighties rock of "Into The Wall" and the post-punk energy of "Set The Sun." To find out more about Massy Ferguson and their latest release "Run It Right Into The Wall," please visit massyfergusonband.com.

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

CD Review: Jerry Goodman Plays Out His "Violin Fantasy" & Erik Sondhy Pays A Visit To Abbey Road Studios

American electric violinist Jerry Goodman, former member of the jazz fusion band Mahavishnu Orchestra, recently released his new studio album "Violin Fantasy" on July 1st. It features a dozen tracks, including covers of rock anthems like "Enter Sandman" and "Eye Of The Tiger" along with two never before released instrumentals titled, "In The Realm Of The Netherwold" and "Violin Fantasy." Bassist Tony Levin and guitarist Billy Sherwood lend a hand on the progressive rock feel of "The Laws Of Nature." Goodman showcases his delicate touch on the mystical feel of "Rock On" and builds up the intensity of Journey's "Don't Stop Believin'." Yes keyboardist Rick Wakeman lends his talents to the expanding soundscape of "Random Acts Of Science," before Gooman closes the album in the appropriate way with the up-lifting orchestral sound of "The Final Countdown." To find out more about Jerry Goodman and his latest release "Violin Fantasy," please visit cleorecs.com.

Indonesia jazz pianist Erik Sondhy recently released his latest solo album "Abbey Road Sessions, Vol. 1." It features Erik performing solo on six new tracks, beginning with the eleven-minute "London Blues." Erik takes little breaks away from the rhythmic piano as his instrumental playing becomes the voice the song. The gentle piano ballad "I Will" shows the beauty in Erik's performance, while the swing of "Sofia's Rag" reflects his early influence from Fat Waller. The album closes with the up-tempo, twelve-minute expression of "Echo Beach Calypso." To find out more about Erik Sondhy and his latest release "Abbey Road Sessions, Vol. 1," please visit his Facebook page at facebook.com/Eriksondhymusic.

Monday, July 11, 2016

CD Review: The Temple Agents Go "Live" & Save The Lost Boys Feature Their New "Temptress"

From Santiago, Chile comes the hard rock band Temple Agents with their first live album titled "Live Santiago De Chile." It was released on July 1st to co-inside with the band's opening slot on their latest tour with Candlebox which runs until the end of the month. The new ten-song release begins with the intense delivery of "Red Demons," which feels as if the whole arena is rocking to the hard-hitting rhythm of the song. The new live album also features songs that did not appear on the band's debut studio album, like the quick-pace of "Lacking Of Life" and the metal screams of "For You." The lead single from this release is the acoustic rocker "Divine Lightning," which also features Candlebox's Kevin Martin on vocals. The energy of their live shows is definitely felt through the recording of songs like "Free" and "Last Train" as Temple Agents will be headlining their own tours very soon. To find out more about Temple Agents and their latest release "Live Santiago De Chile," please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/templeagents

From Ohio, comes the latest release titled "Temptress" from pop-punk band Save The Lost Boys." It features ten tracks of high-energy, beginning with the quick rhythm of "Wasting My Time" as the addictive chorus gets locked into your brain. Their youthfulness is felt in the lyrics of "Bad Names" as dating and self-image are the core subjects to their songs. Tyler Smyth (Dangerkids) lends a hand to the power of the quick-paced "Dancing," before the band slows down the pace with the punk ballad "Things I Could Never Forget." The album finishes with the combined power of "Overreaction" and "Whatever You Like" as the band puts their life experiences to music for all to hear. The new album "Temptress" will be released on July 15th through Victory Records. To find out more about Save The Lost Boys, please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/TheLostBoys.

Sunday, July 10, 2016

CD Review: Omnivore Recordings Pulls Together The "High Voltage" Of Maynard Ferguson

Omnivore Recordings continues to roll out these lost gems from jazz trumpet legend Maynard Ferguson. First, back in December they re-issued his albums "Storm" and "Live From San Francisco." They continued this past March with re-issuing his albums "Body & Soul" and "Big Bop Nouveau." Now on July 15th, Omnivore Recordings will be releasing the "Complete High Voltage" sessions in a 2CD set.

After the success of his big band "Body & Soul" album, Maynard Ferguson entered the studio with his small jazz ensemble to create a much different sound than his last effort. Inspired by Miles Davis' "Bitches Brew" and the recordings of Weather Report, Ferguson created the jazz fusion, two volume masterpiece "High Voltage." Now the two separately released albums are brought together in one complete set as the electronics of the eighties played a major role in the recording of this set.  The addition of keyboards and electric guitars allows Ferguson to add his punches of trumpet along a steady rhythm of synthesizers.

The new release is highlighted by the addition of two bonus tracks that were recorded during the sessions for "High Voltage, Vol. 2." The first bonus track "To Say The Least" features the smooth back and forth between Ferguson's trumpet and Billy Hulting's vibes. The second bonus track, "O Sole Mio" is a beautiful eighties-style ballad that centers around Ferguson's talent for portraying emotion through his performance. To find out more about the new "Complete High Voltage" from Maynard Ferguson, please visit omnivorerecordings.com

Saturday, July 9, 2016

CD Review: Heart Return With New Studio Album "Beautiful Broken"

Rock 'N' Roll Hall of Famers Heart recently released their 16th studio album "Beautiful Broken" on July 8th through the Concord Music Group. It is their first album in four years and their first since being inducted into the Rock 'N' Roll Hall of Fame in 2013. Also this summer, Heart will be on tour with fellow Hall of Famers Cheap Trick and Joan Jett And The Blackhearts for the "Rock Hall 3 For All" tour.

The new ten-song release begins with the high-powered, energetic rocker "Beautiful Broken," which shows that the band can still rock after forty years. The Wilson sister (Ann & Nancy) also invited Metallica's James Hetfield to lend his vocals to the song's intense delivery. The new album mixes together new originals and re-imaged versions of some of their songs from earlier albums. Ann's vocals sound so timeless on the piano introduction of "Two" and on the wonderful ballad "Sweet Darlin'," accompanied by a wonderful string arrangement done by the legendary Paul Buckmaster (Elton John, David Bowie). Nancy's guitar burns a path along the way of the orchestrated backdrop of "I Jump" and then the band invokes the spirit of Led Zeppelin during the mystical rock of "Heaven." The album finishes up with the thick bluesy guitar riff of "City's Burning" which was first recorded for Heart's 1982 album "Private Audition" and the eighties pop of "Language Of Love" from their album "Passionworks."

Heart kick off their U.S. summer tour on July 14th and will be making their way across the country for the next two months. For a complete list of shows and to find out more about their new album "Beautiful Broken," please visit heart-music.com.

Friday, July 8, 2016

CD/DVD Review: Twisted Sister Have A "Metal Meltdown" In Honor Of A.J. Pero

For over 30 years, the music of Twisted Sister has blasted over the airwaves. Known primarily for their rock anthems ("We're Not Gonna Take It" and "I Wanna Rock") and their over-the-top music videos, Twisted Sister was always first and foremost about the music. They believed in their cause and their fans believed in them. In 1988, Twister Sister disbanded and each of the member went their separate ways.
 
In 2001, in the wake of 9/11, Twisted Sister regrouped for a cause to headline the New York Steel benefit concert to raise money for widows and orphans of the NYFD and NYPD. Since then, Twisted Sister has performed at festivals all over the world, until tragedy hit the band when long-time drummer A.J. Pero passed away suddenly in 2015. Instead of calling it quits, Twisted Sister raged on and in honor of their fallen bandmate, they performed at the Hard Rock Casino in Las Vegas with friend Mike Portnoy sitting in on drums. The show was filmed for release and on July 22nd through Loud And Proud Records will have "Twisted Sister: Metal Meltdown Live At The Hard Rock Casino Las Vegas - A Concert To Honor A.J. Pero."
 
The video will be released in Blu-ray and DVD formats along with an audio CD of the show. Included with the 90-minute concert is the documentary "Rockshow" which takes fans from Twisted Sister's beginnings through the band's 40-year career. The show was mixed in 5.1 Surround Sound and features high-definition cameras to capture every angle, from right in lead singer Dee Snider's face to over the shoulder of drummer Mike Portnoy. The seventeen-song setlist is a Twisted Sister's fan's wet dream as they perform all of their most well-know hits like "You Can't Stop Rock 'n' Roll" and "Under The Blade." The band's energy is super high on tracks like "The Kids Are Back" and "Shoot 'Em Down" as the camera continues the scan the crowd in order to feel the energy in the room. The video breaks away from the concert on several occasions to show interviews with the band members about their early days of touring and others associated with the band like Mark Metcalf, who plays the father/teacher in the music videos. The venue turns into a starlight memorial for A.J. Pero during "The Price," before turning the heat up with the dark heavy metal tones of "Burn In Hell," which pays tribute to Pero with one of his iconic drum solos played on the videos screens. 
 
Dee works up the crowd with the science experiment during "I Wanna Rock," before the intense thrash metal throwdown of "Come Out And Play" and the Twisted Sister anthem of "SMF" to close out the show. To find out more about "Twisted Sister: Metal Meltdown Live At The Hard Rock Casino Las Vegas - A Concert To Honor A.J. Pero," please visit loudandproudrecords.com.

Thursday, July 7, 2016

CD Review: New Music From Singer/Songwriters Pete Kronowitt, Riley Etheridge Jr., My Girl The River & Carina Round

America is ready for something to change. Whether it happens with the arrival of a new president or with new technology, the people of this country are ready to embrace change and according to singer/songwriter Pete Kronowitt, a "Change Is Gonna Come." His latest album "A Lone Voice" features a dozen tracks that look to send out a political message on everything from gun control ("Got Guns?") to the heads of government ("Puppet Master") to equal rights for women ("Body, Choice & Mind"). His songwriting excels during the infectious ballad "You Are Here" and "Follow The Leader." The up-tempo acoustic rock of "She Gives" and the quietness of "Perfect Day" ends the album with an inspiring message of hope for change in the future. To find out more about Pete Kronowitt and his latest release "A Lone Voice," please visit petekronowittmusic.com.

From New York City comes the latest release titled "Secrets, Hope & Waiting" from singer/songwriter Riley Etheridge Jr. It will be released this September and features ten songs that have a very intimate feel as you cozy up to Riley's words. Beginning with the slow country-blues of "Like A Fool," his vocals are smooth and warm as you feel invited into his group of friends hearing this music being produced live. The gentle acoustics of "The Moments Gone" draws out the emotions of the song's lyrics and "Do You Remember" give strength the subtlety of the music. The wonderful harmonies of "Hoping & Waiting" along with the soothing output of "Hush" allows the listener to just get lost in Riley's words. To find out more about Riley Etheridge Jr. and his latest release "Secrets, Hope & Waiting," please visit rileyetheridge.com.

British folk duo My Girl The River recently release their debut album "This Ain't No Fairytale." It features a dozen tracks of some of the most beautifully elegant songs, beginning with the gentle touch of "The Rabbit Hole." The two harmonize magically on the folk, build-up of "Woods Behind Our House," then lead singer Kris Wilkinson Hughes strengthens her vocals for the bluegrass appeal of "Come Back To Nashville." My Girl The River visits the blues with "Where I Belong" and "Giving Up On Giving Up On You," before finishing up the album with the up-beat country swing of "Bring It On Down" and the quiet intimacy of "The Last Song." To find out more about My Girl The River and their latest release "This Ain't No Fairytale," please visit supertinyrecords.com.

U.K. native Carina Round will be revisiting her back catalog with a collection of favorites from her 2001 to 2015 albums. Carina Round is also a member of the ambient, alternative rock band Puscifer with Tool frontman Maynard James Keenan. Her new "greatest hits" album titled "Deranged To Divine" features eighteen tracks, sixteen from her past albums and two previously unreleased tracks that have been resurrected for this release. One of the new songs is "Gunshot" which has a slow, melodic country-vibe as her vocals easily steal your heart. The other new track is the post-punk energy of "Want More" as Carina shows us her rock side. One of the most well-known tracks on this new release is "For Everything A Reason," which was featured in the TV series "American Horror Story: Murder House." The haunting delivery of the music is enhanced by Carina's soft, angelic vocals. This set is the perfect place to start if you are just becoming a fan of Carina Round. To find out more about her new release "Deranged To Divine," please visit carinaround.com.