Thursday, May 31, 2012

CD Review: Indie-Pop Shines With Two New Releases

Two new singer/songwriters are on the verge of making an impact on the indie music scene. One is from Denmark (Francis Bowie), the other from New York (Nehedar). Francis Bowie began his music career 5 years ago as part of the band, A Love You. Now he has released his 4-song solo debut which combines pop electronics with deep, meaningful lyrics. 

The opening song "Endlessly" is pure pop with catchy lyrics and a up-tempo dance beat. The beats get carried throughout the rest of the album with the closing song "Silly and Crazy" benefitting the most from this musical collaboration. To find out more about Francis Bowie, be sure to check out 

Nehedar is the project of musician Emilia Cataldo. She, like Francis Bowie, uses electronics to give her music a more upbeat, pop feel. Her lyrics in the opening song "The Interrogation" seems a little out of place with the 80's synthesizers, but her voice keeps the song light. The soft, simple beats of "High Tide" and "Intro" allow Nehedar's vocals to really take off and make the songs her own, but her beautiful voice in "Distracted" is what makes you take notice of her music. She experiments with different tempos on "Dig Deep (part 1 and 2)," before returning to the meaningful, mellowness of "Unlove Song." The album closes with the sing-along, accordion-filled chant of "Count Down The Days." 

Her new album, "High Tide" was released back in March. For song samples from the new album, please visit

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

CD Review: Albert King Plays "The Blues For You" Again

The Concord Music Group does it again, bringing us one of the classic albums from blues guitar legend Albert King. In honor of its 40th anniversary, King’s album “I’ll Play The Blues For You” gets remastered by Joe Tarantino and gets re-released with four bonus songs.

Originally released in 1972, the album only peaked at #140 on the Billboard pop charts, but the impact of the album had a long-lasting affect that does not show up on any charts. This album proved that Albert Kings wasn’t only an amazing blues guitarist, but that he had a brand of funk and soul that he wanted us all to hear.

The original album begins with the seven-plus minute title song that transports you back to the seventies as King lets his guitar do most of the talking. An eight-minute alternate of this song appears as one of the bonus tracks. Either take could have appeared on the final album as you notice how professional King was in the studio. A little bit of soul comes pouring out of King’s performance of the short song “Little Brother,” before his dives back into the blues on “Breaking Up Somebody’s Home.”

Before getting into the bonus tracks, the album finishes with the non-LP track “Angel of Mercy” that has King peeling off blues licks like he was auditioning to become the next great blues legend. The bonus tracks include alternate takes of “I’ll Play The Blues For You” and “Don’t Burn Down The Bridge,” but the real gems are the unreleased funk of “I Need A Love” and the quick blues instrumental “Albert’s Stomp.”

This album was released on May 22 through the Concord Music Group. For more information on this release be sure to check out

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

CD Review: Rob Morsberger Summons Up "Ghosts" On New Album

Singer/songwriter Rob Morsberger has been very busy as of late. He's collaborated on the Grammy Award Winning soundtrack for the HBO series “Boardwalk Empire,” he makes an appearances on the new albums from Patti Smith and from Loudon Wainwright III and even found time to write an album of his own. The new release from Morsberger is titled “Ghosts Before Breakfast” and was inspired by the 1927 movie of the same name.

The opening track “Ghosts Before Breakfast” shows Morsberger pulling off his best impression of Ray Davies of The Kinks as his vocals and storytelling lyrics reflect a simpler time. He then switches tones to a more Dylanesque-style to his vocals during “The Great Whatever.” He tries for a more pop approach on “The Distinguished Thing,” but seems more at home with his lo-fi, folk storytelling as in “Cobblestones” and “The Man Of Much Merit.” Morsberger has fun with his musicians on “Celebrity Artist,” before returning to the serious, heartfelt ballad “For Heaven’s Sake.” The album closes with the raw, but beautiful “Christina In Your Salon.”

The album was released back in November of 2011 on Hieroglyph Records and features a copy of the Hans Richter film “Ghost Before Breakfast” as a bonus. For more information on this release and on all the Rob Morsberger is a part of, please visit

CD Review: New Music From The Other Side Of The World

Indie Music Promotions have a couple new rock albums to brag about. First is a new EP from award winning rock band Monks of Mellonwah and the other is from Russian alternative rocker Oleg Prodeus.

Australian rock band the Monks of Mellonwah are riding a new successful high. They were recently named the "Best Indie Rock Act" at the 2012 Artists in Music Awards and won first prize at Harold's Shorts film festival for their video for the song "Swamp Groove." They also released a brand new EP on May 24th entitled "Neurogenesis."

The five-song EP begins and finishes with the title song, which sounds like a progressive rock piece that definitely rocks with a blazing guitar solo. The end song is a radio edit of the song which cuts out a minute-and-a-half of the song. The album continues with "Neverending Spirit," which carries a sound similar to some modern day Linkin Park. Monks of Mellonwah quicken the pace on "Kyoto" before finishing with the ballad "You Shine."

The new EP was engineered by Howie Weinberg (Nirvana, Red Hot Chili Peppers) and gives you a little taste of what this new band has to offer. For more information, check out the band's website

From Russia comes Oleg Prodeus with his new English/Russian-alternative rock album "13." This is Oleg's third solo album and has been in the works since 2009. The album will be released in both English and in his native language.

The album is full of passion as Oleg pours his heart into "Can You Feel The Rain" and "You're Running Away." He also adds some electronics to his more uptempo songs ("Follow Me" "Mother") which gives them a Depeche Mode feel. The only problem is that the album has a very up and down feel which takes away the momentum of the some of the faster songs. The overall songwriting is great with spots of brilliance ( "Return to Begin").

For more information on Oleg Prodeus, please check out his website (

Monday, May 28, 2012

CD Review: Concord Music Group Remasters Three More Jazz Classics

The Concord Music Group is once again rolling out three new titles in the Jazz Classics Remasters Series. The new titles are The Bill Evans Trio’s “Moonbeams,” Thelonious Monk’s “Misterioso” and The Quintet (Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie, Bud Powell, Max Roach, and Charles Mingus) “Jazz at Massey Hall.” These new titles were released on May 15 and each title was remastered by Joe Tarantino and features bonus tracks and new liner notes.

First up is the 1962 Bill Evans Trio classic “Moonbeams.” It features the wonderful ballads from the same sessions that produced Evans’ other album “How My Heart Sings.” Bill Evans’ piano playing is superb on “Polka Dots and Moonbeams” and “Stairway To The Stars." Evans paces the song’s gentle tempo with his piano playing. Evans also attempts a beautiful rendition of Rogers & Hammerstein’s “It Might As Well Be Spring.” As a bonus, the album also contains three earlier takes of the songs “Polka Dots and Moonbeams,” “I Fall In Love Too Easily” and “Very Early.” This album is perfect choice for the Concord Music Group to remaster. It is such a relaxing, wonderful album.

Up next is one of two live albums that have been remastered. This one features the great Thelonious Monk live at the Five Spot CafĂ© in New York in 1958. The show was recorded and released under the title “Misterioso.” The band wastes no time with their solos as in “Blues Five Spot.” Monk displays his skills on the piano on his cover of “Just A Gigolo” and on the album closer “Misterioso.” The three bonus songs are some of Monk’s classics including “Evidence” and “’Round Midnight.” The last bonus track is an outstanding medley of “Bye-Ya” and “Epistorphy.” It’s nice to finally have these songs included with the original album.

Finally, we have what many consider the “greatest jazz concert ever,” Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie, Bud Powell, Max Roach and Charles Mingus live “at Massey Hall.” This album was recorded at the Massey Hall in Toronto, Canada in 1953 to a less than half full concert hall. The album was originally recorded by Mingus to release on his new record label, Debut. While this may not be as well known as some other live jazz recordings, this is significant because this will be the last time that “bebop” originators Parker and Gillespie will perform together. Only six songs total were performed as the first 3 songs make up the first set which ran almost 25 minutes. After a 45-minute intermission, the band returned with another three songs to wrap up the performance. While this concert was recorded with only one microphone located center stage, after almost 60 years, this album has never sounded better thanks to the remastering of Joe Tarantino.

For more information on these albums and other in the Original Jazz Classics Remasters Series please visit

Sunday, May 27, 2012

CD Review: Gossip Create "Joyful Noise" On New Album

Alternative rockers Gossip are growing in popularity with each new release. Beginning in 1999, the band released three independent albums with 2006's "Standing In The Way of Control" breaking through in the U.K. There next album, 2009's Columbia Records' debut, "Music For Men" sold over 1 million copies and received rave reviews.

Now Gossip return with a brand-new studio album for Columbia Records entitled "A Joyful Noise." The album was produced by pop genius Brian Higgins (Kylie Minogue, Pet Shop Boys) and the sound on the new album reflects it.

The album begins with "Melody Emergency," a great deep guitar groove that gives the song a rough, garage band sound. The album's first single, "Perfect World" is pop perfection as vocalist Beth Ditto gets to flex her pipes during the chorus. The band gets funky on the electronic-filled "Get A Job" before hitting the dance floor for "Move In The Right Direction." Gossip find a comfortable home within the pop sounds of "Into The Wild" and "Involved" as their upbeat sound fits perfectly into that genre. Drummer Hannah Billie and guitarist Nathan Howdeshell get funky once again on the groove to "I Won't Play" before finishing with the pop-rock collaboration of "Love In A Foreign Place."

Gossip will be performing at the Rock Am Ring festival in Germany before spending the rest of the summer in Europe. For a complete list of tour dates and more information on the new album, be sure to check out

Saturday, May 26, 2012

CD Review: Tenacious D "Rize" From The Ashes

The hard-rocking, comedy duo, Tenacious D return with a new album entitled "Rize of the Fenix" on Columbia Records. While their last album "The Pick of Destiny," was a soundtrack to the band's movie of the same name, their new album is the perfect follow-up to their debut masterpiece. The album was produced by John Kimbrough and features Dave Grohl (Nirvana, Foo Fighters) on drums.

The album begins with the title song which finds Jack Black's vocal performance paying tribute to the late great Ronnie James Dio on this 6-minute epic number. Tenacious D are known for great riffs with very comedic lyrics as in "Low Hangin' Fruit" and "Rock Is Dead." They also include short skits ("Classical Teacher" and "Flutes & Trombones") within songs that seem juvenile at times, but is still funny as hell. One of the first songs written for this new album was the "Deth Starr," which is one of the heaviest songs on the album, powered by Grohl's pounding drums. The slow building "Throw Down" shows how Jack Black and Kyle Glass has matured as song-writers. The album closes with "39" as Black pulls-off his vocal impersonation of Neil Diamond.

Tenacious D will begin their tour on May 23rd out in California before heading over to Europe. They will return to the states at the end of June, performing along the East Coast before heading back out west. For a complete list of dates, check out

Friday, May 25, 2012

CD Review: Relax With The Sounds Of Jack Jeffery and Lowlakes

If you are looking for some new interesting, intellectual, relaxing music, here are a couple of new artists to listen to. Indie solo artist, Jack Jeffery combines his influences of Pink Floyd and Peter Gabriel into an acoustic, progressive soundscape, while Australia’s Lowlakes puts your mind at ease with their airy, flowing sounds.

Singer/songwriter Jack Jeffery returns with his newest release “The Constant That Remains,” which is the follow-up to his critically-acclaimed album “Passage to Agadir.” The 10-song album begins with “We Need It Back” which combines layers upon lyrics of sound to create a psychedelic background. His gentle folk-style of “Rearranged” and “Gavotte for African Steel Guitar” gives Jeffery the perfect melody to create such wonderful music. The keyboard driven “Valencian Cosmos” and “Ascendancy” is a nice break before returning to the Floydian closer “Carry On.”

For more information on Jack Jeffery, please visit his myspace page (

Next, from half-way around the world comes Australian band Lowlakes with a new self-titled album. The new 4-song EP was recorded live to tape without any overdubs. The gentle flow of the opening “Song for Motion”displays their warm sound as it continues on through to the next song “Catch A Breeze.” The song “Buffalo” sounds like a Tears for Fears outtake, while the album finishes with the floating notes of “Arctic House.”

Lowlakes will be hitting the US shores in September and October. Please visit for the most up to date information.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

CD Review: Chicago Artists Bring The Deep South Up North

When you have a lot of music to release, why not just release two debut albums, instead of only one now and one later on. This is exactly what singer/songwriter Jonas Friddle did along with his band The Majority. The two albums ("Belle de Louisville" and "Synco Pony") were released back in February and are making noise in the Chicago area, selling out shows at The Hideout.

The classic sounds of the deep south come pouring through the speakers in the opening song, "A String To A Bell" on the "Belle de Louisville" album. Jonas Friddle and the Majority turn things into an old-fashion hoe-down with "Jordan Am A Hard Road To Travel," before slowing down for the country-folk sounding "Waltzing Away." The band displays some nice harmonizing in "Kitty Alone" before the album closes with the clap-along beat of the "When I Hit My Stride."

While the band's overall sound varies slightly on "Synco Pony" the songs seem to have a darker tone like "Napoleon Complex" and "George Walker." The dixieland jazz comes shining out on the "Wall Street Rag" and the band pays tribute to everyone's favorite news anchor Tom Brokaw with the lullaby "Tom Brokaw Blues." The album finishes with a live version of "The Hipster" which is based on a newspaper article.

Jonas Friddle and the Majority will be performing at the 100th Birthday Celebration of Woody Guthrie at the Old Town School of Folk Music in Chicago on June 30. For more information, please visit

Also from Chicago comes Americana folk band Furious Frank with a new album entitled "The Map & The Territory." While Furious Frank don't quite travel as far south as Jonas Friddle with their sound, but hearing songs like "Lonely Tombs" and "Medford" definitely place you out in the country. The band finally come to life on "Whiskey Row" as the up-tempo music and storied lyrics make a great combination. Furious Frank does a little experimenting on "In Good Time," adding some electric guitars and horns to the mix. They pick things up on "Peaceful Living" before closing the album with the Tex-Mex sounds of "Czech Xmas in Texas" and "Hobo Insurrection From Space."

Furious Frank have a couple upcoming shows out in the Midwest. For a complete list of dates and more information on the new album, please visit

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

CD Review: Big Ol' Nasty Getdown Gets Funky On "Volume 1"

Funk music all-stars, the Big Ol' Nasty Getdown is a rotating door of musicians that come together to have fun and relive some of Funk music's greatest moments. Created by John Heintz, John-Paul Miller and Derrick Johnson about four years ago, the Big Ol' Nasty Getdown was born from the sounds of New Orleans. Their debut album is entitled simply "Volume 1" and features the legendary George Clinton as well as members of P-Funk, Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Blackalicious, Graham Central Station, Galactic and loads more. The album was released on May 22.

The album opens with a great introduction instrumental ("The Big Ol' Nasty Getdown") that puts funk beats, horns and guitar licks right in your face to enjoy. The album's first single, "College Funk" won the 2011 Hollywood Music in Media award for Funk/Groove Song of the Year. The song is another instrumental full of deep bass groove and some blazing solos placed over a dance-floor beat. The album does carry its share of vocal performances, especially from the ladies as in "Include Me" and "Platinum." George Clinton adds his vocals to the slow, deep groove of "The Beauty of Pretty," before closing the album with the 20-plus member band coming together, locking into a groove on "It's So Hard To Go" and then the hip-hop flavored "Amplify."

As production begins for "Volume 2," the Big Ol' Nasty Getdown are also putting together a fall tour. For more information, please visit

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

CD Review: Park Hotell Add "Layers" To Their Sound

Swedish band, Park Hotell recently released their U.S. debut album entitled “Layers” through Slimstyle Records. The band began almost ten years ago and has released four albums in their home country of Sweden. Now, finally we get to hear from this modern indie rock band making who's making waves overseas.

The album leads off with the brief mid-tempo, 80's rocker “Dead Ringers” as Park Hotell brings in elements from when R.E.M. and U2 were underground, undiscovered acts. The songs “Black Hole” and “Layers” find the right balance of punk edginess and pop attractiveness. Park Hotell overloads the songs “Lights Home” and “Low On Resistance” with keyboards and electronics which show off a very polished sound. They can’t escape that 80’s tag with songs like “Born A Thief” and “The Guest Who Stayed Forever” before ending with “Pandemonium Ducks” which carries a very modern, slick finish.

Park Hotell performed at this year’s SXSW festival back in March and the new album is available now. For more information, please visit

Monday, May 21, 2012

CD Review: Shinedown Rock Hard On "Amaryllis"

Back in March, American hard rock band Shinedown released their much anticipated fourth album entitled “Amaryllis.” The album was released through Atlantic Records and produced by the legendary Rob Cavallo (Green Day, Dave Matthews Band). It reached #4 on the Billboard Album chart and is the highest charting album for the band thus far. In two months, the album has sold almost 200,000 copies.

This album follows the formula for the perfect rock album. They have heavy, fist pumping, banging songs that show how hard they can rock (“Adrenaline,” “Enemies”). They have the power ballads (“I’ll Follow You,” “Through The Ghost”) that prove they write from the heart and they have the hits singles (“Bully,” “Unity”) which is a call to arms to their legion of fans. Shinedown continues with that winning formula that has brought them platinum record status on past albums.

Shinedown have been touring heavily behind this new release and will head over to Europe in June. For more information on the new album and for a complete list of tour dates, please check out

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Concert Review: Chickenfoot Show Their Youthful Side At Mohegan Sun

It seems that the band Chickenfoot have found the fountain of youth. Original band members Joe Satriani and Michael Anthony are in their mid-to-late fifties and lead singer Sammy Hagar is approaching his mid-sixties. Chickenfoot can still rock as they proved last Saturday night at the Mohegan Sun arena.

Guitarist Joe Satriani started the night off with the guitar intro to “Lighten Up” off the band’s latest release, “Chickenfoot III.” The harmonizing between Hagar and Michael Anthony was spot on all night, especially on the chorus of “Alright, Alright” and “Sexy Little Thing.” The addition of Kenny Aronoff on drums gave the songs a heavier, more hard rock feel, especially “Soap On A Rope” and “Last Temptation.” The band was on fire, locking in to the perfect rock riff during an epic version of “Down The Drain” that featured an outstanding solo from Satriani. Hagar strapped on his guitar for the set closer “Future In The Past,” as images of the band flashed on the screens in back.

Hagar expressed how much fun he had performing with these guys and that they always enjoy playing at Mohegan Sun. The encore began with another new song, “Different Devil,” before the crowd entertained the band with shouts of “oh yeah!” during the chorus of the song “Oh Yeah.” The evening closed with Chickenfoot performing the Montrose song “Rock Candy,” which Hagar stated was the first song he ever wrote.

While the set consisted of only fourteen songs, the band jammed on every song, featuring so many blazing solos from Satriani. The band and the audience seemed to feed off each other’s energy as each witnessed a great night of rock music, which could be the secret to the “fountain of youth.”

Setlist: Lighten Up, Alright Alright, Big Foot, Sexy Little Thing, Soap On A Rope, Last Temptation, My Kinda Girl, Down The Drain, Something Going Wrong, Turnin’ Left, Future In The Past
(encore) Different Devil, Oh Yeah, Rock Candy

Friday, May 18, 2012

Concert Review: Maroon 5 Open Tour At The MGM Grand Theatre At Foxwoods

The theme of the evening was quality not quantity as pop-rock superstars Maroon 5 began their 2012 tour at the MGM Grand Theatre at Foxwoods last Thursday night. Fans of all ages, mostly female, filed into their seats for an unusual early 7:00pm start to the show. The Voice’s Season 1 winner, and Connecticut native, Javier Colon started off the evening with a quick thirty minute set of covers and originals. Colon was very talkative with the audience and seemed very comfortable onstage in the spotlight. The crowd seemed to give Colon a very warm reception as fans waited patiently for the main attraction.

As the lights went down, the first few rows of fans rushed to the stage to be as close as possible to the band and mainly front-man Adam Levine. The band kicked it into high-gear early with “This Love” and “Harder To Breathe” as the screams from the audience were defining at times. Like I said before the quality of the songs and the performance were outstanding, but the main set of eleven songs lasted less than one hour. The biggest hits of the evening were found at the end of their set as Maroon 5 performed their brand-new single “Payphone.” The guitars of Levine and James Valentine blazed a path through “Wake Up Call” before finishing the set with “Sweetest Goodbye.” Much of the setlist touched upon the group’s first album, “Songs About Jane” as the album approaches its 10th anniversary. Maroon 5 were high energy which reflected off the audience as the paid-back the favor by singing and dancing to every song performed.

After a brief intermission, Maroon 5 raised the bar, and sound levels by performing three of the band’s biggest and most-well known songs. As soon as the keyboards and guitar locked in for “Moves Like Jagger,” the theatre turned into one giant dance floor as everyone was on their feet, infected by the groove to move. Next up was a song off their platinum selling album of the same title, “Hand All Over.” The show closed with Levine interacting with the audience during a sing-along of the chorus of “She Will Be Loved.”

As the band took their final bow of the evening, the night was still young as the time of 9:15pm shown on the clock. While the quantity of songs seemed to have run out, the quality, showmanship and energy that Maroon 5 put into their performance is why they are becoming the “must see” band of the summer.

Setlist: This Love, Harder To Breathe, Sunday Morning, If I Never See Your Face Again, Misery, Makes Me Wonder, Tangled, Won’t Go Home Without You, Payphone, Wake Up Call, Sweetest Goodbye
(encore) Moves Like Jagger, Hands All Over, She Will Be Loved

CD Review: Metal Blade Records Brings New Music To The Masses

May 8th must have been national heavy metal release day because legendary metal record label Metal Blade Records released three much anticipated albums. Death metal makes its return with Cattle Decapitation and Allegaeon, while a new progressive rock band, Trioscapes add their mark upon the world of music.

Deathgrind metal band Cattle Decapitation leave nothing to the imagination as their album covers and aggressive musical attack look to make an impact on your memory. The new album entitled “Monolith of Inhumanity” is the band’s fifth album with Metal Blade Records. Songs like “The Carbon Stampede” and “Gristle Licker” are just aggressive flashes of power to which Cattle Decapitation are known for. Their music is not for the lighthearted. They briefly stretch beyond the brutal vocal/guitar/drum attack in “Lifestalker” as they change tempos to keep the song’s structure more interesting and appealing.

Cattle Decapitation is just wrapping up their Occupation Domination tour along with Origin, Aborted and others. For more information on this deathgrind band’s new album, visit

Fellow death metal band Allegaeon found success with their debut album “Fragments of Form and Fuction.” It became the #4 rated best death metal album of all time by and many of the singles from that album were in constant rotation on Sirius Liquid Metal station. Now with a new album entitled “Formshifter,” Allegaeon is ready to set again to conquer the airwaves.

The first single, “Tartessos: The Hidden Xenocryst” displays how well this band sounds together as each member makes the others sound that much better. Ezra Haynes’ vocals are aggressive, but not overpowering as the duel guitar attack of Ryan Glisan and Greg Burgess make every song sound stronger. The seven-minute song “Twelve” begins with the hard-hitting attack, but finishes with a wonderful acoustic guitar instrumental. The album finishes strong with the powerful onslaught of “Timeline Dissonance,” “Formshifter” and “Secrets of the Sequence.”

Allgaeon have a few more dates left on their current tour. For more information, check out their Metal Blade Records’ artist page (

The new kids on the block are Trioscapes with a new six-song LP entitled “Separate Realities.” The trio of Dan Briggs (bass), Walter Fancourt (tenor sax/flute) and Matt Lynch (drums) began with a working rendition of the Mahavishnu Orchestra’s “Celestial Terrestrial Commuters.” The idea was so addicting that they continued with an entire album’s worth of material.

The sound on the opening track “Blast Off” brings to mind some early King Crimson instrumentals as Trioscapes falls perfectly into the progressive rock category. Their music is sometimes a little too jazzy, but their groove has a funky-rock backdrop as in “Wazzlejazzlebof.” Their studio version of “Celestial Terrestrial Commuters” also appears on this release before the album finishes with the trippy, Zappa-esque “Gemini’s Descent.”

They are currently working on some live dates this summer, so be sure to check out up to date information.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

CD Review: New Artists FInd Their Way With In Music We Trust

Music Promoter, In Music We Trust is rolling out a load of new album releases over the course of the next two months. Styles range from the airy, gentle, pop-folk of Carrousel and Jenn Rawling with Basho Parks to the Psych-rock of Skyline Pigeons. In between are some new releases from singer/songwriters Justin Jude and mbilly.

Carrousel’s debut album “27 Rue De Mi’chelle” was released on May 1. It deals with the all-too familiar theme of lost love and is captured in such a way that you feel like you are on this music journey with the band. Songs like “14” and “You Only Love Yourself” show us the talent these musicians have and the dedication Joel Piedt has for writing such complex pieces. Carrousel just wrapped up a few shows in Florida, but watch for Carrousel to book more live shows this summer. Check out their facebook page ( for more information. 

Jenn Rawling & Basho Parks are an indie folk-duo ready to release their debut album “Take the Air” on Waterbug Records. Jenn’s gentle voice and rich, powerful lyrics make the songs “Oh Delia” and “Tidal” feel like a breath of fresh air in the folk music community. The album finishes with the country hoe-down of “Little Swallow” and the heartfelt ballad “Leaving So Soon.” Jenn Rawling & Basho Parks have a load of dates scheduled until mid-June, including radio shows and festivals. For more information, please visit

Singer/songwriter Justin Jude is following the success of his 2008 album with a 5-song EP entitled “5 Kinds Of Rain.” The album is a quick autobiography of the changes that took place in Jude’s life since his last album. Jude sticks close to his acoustic guitar on the two opening songs “Bleed” and “Rose City” as you follow his adventures in words. The highlight of the album is the James Taylor sounding “Hard To Stay Alive.” Justin Jude has a handful of live shows in Oregon. For more information on Jude’s new album “5 Kinds of Rain,” please visit

Singer/songwriter mbilly is ready to release his sophomore album entitled “Malheur” on June 5th. The use of drum machines gives his music a raw sound as in “Your Famous Name.” At times his music sounds very polished (“The Man Who Prays”) and other times (“Billboards”) it seems like a full band is needed to flesh out the music more. The highlight is the duet ballad “All Lives Lived” which perfectly captures mbilly’s lyrics. Be sure to check out for more album information and live shows. 

Alternative indie-rock band Skyline Pigeons are releasing their debut album “House of Mysteries” on June 5. The 11-song album was inspired by life-changing events that went on between sisters Roxanne and Caroline Teti. The album switches between the pop-piano flow of “Together,” the gentle ballad “Unrequited” and the up-tempo, rocking “Get Up.” The music just floats in the background of the album closer “Take Me Back” as their voices demand your attention. Be sure to check out their myspace page ( and their facebook page ( for more information on this sister duo.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

CD Review: The Inclined Plane Aims For The New "Frontier"

From Hartford, CT comes The Inclined Plane with their new album “The Backwards Frontier” on Popular Wallpaper Recordings. The album contains 11 home recorded songs that expand well-beyond the basement. Their sound tries to capture the mind-expanding, prog-rock sounds of the 60’s and 70’s with a touch of modern flair.

The songs “Little Shifts” and “Wireland” add a bit of psychedelic rock to the band’s overall indie sound. The acoustics of “California Amps” sounds like it came from the shores of San Francisco in the summer of love, while “New Wave Prison Break” sounds like an underground, modern rock masterpiece. The album closes with the ambient, relaxed flow of “Take My Brain.”

Check out for more information on this underground indie band.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

CD Review: Rock Festivals On Target For Soulicit & Bobaflex

Rockers Soulicit and Bobaflex are performing at two of this year biggest rock shows, Rock On The Range on May 19 and Rocklahoma on May 25. Soulicit’s latest release “Parking Lot Rockstar” contains some great rock anthems like the lead-single “Hell Yeah” and “Blow Me Away.” The band also show their mainstream rock side with “Complicated” and “Getting’ High,” but their strength lies in the addictive rock groove of “Beauty Queen” and “Parking Lot Rockstar.”

Soulicit with be on tour all summer, so check out for a complete list of tour dates as well as a load of other stuff to get you hooked on this rising rock band.

Bobaflex are ready to wrap up the promotion of their latest release “Hell In My Heart” with a handful of dates that includes a stop at Rock On The Range. The album combines four songs from their 2010 EP “Chemical Valley” as well as nine previously unreleased songs along with a live version of “Pretty Razors.” Songs like “Chemical Valley” and “Bury Me With My Guns On” benefit from being remastered as you feel their aggressive attack. The band also makes an attempt at Simon & Garfunkel’s “Sound of Silence” with mixed results as they try to metalize it.

For more on Bobaflex, be sure to check out their website

Monday, May 14, 2012

Concert Review: The Beach Boys Celebrate A Milestone At Mohegan Sun

Not too many bands can say they celebrated their 50th Anniversary together, never mind go on tour to celebrate it. The Beach Boys have been touring for the last decade with only some of the original members, but what makes this tour extra special is that all the surviving original members of The Beach Boys are together onstage.

The first of two sold-out shows at the Mohegan Sun Arena definitely had quite a bit of nostalgia in the air. As each member of The Beach Boys was introduced, Brian Wilson received the biggest applause. Maybe it was because he hasn’t toured with the band since the late-seventies, or maybe because he was the mastermind behind many of The Beach Boys classic songs. But, as Wilson took a seat at his white piano, the 10-piece backing band kicked in with “Do It Again.” While original members Mike Love and Brian Wilson took most of the lead vocals throughout the night, Al Jardine (“Cotton fields”) and Bruce Johnston (“Disney Girls”) each made their presence known with leads of their own.

The 23-song first set was filled with many of the band’s early classics like “Surfin’ Safari,” “Surfer Girl” and “Don’t Worry Baby.” The audience made it known what school they rooted for, as flashes of the UConn logo drew big applause during “Be True To Your School.” The Beach Boys had the older crowd on their feet and dancing during their medley of songs “Little Deuce Coupe,” “409,” “Shut Down” and “I Get Around.”

After a 10-minute intermission, the second set began with The Beach Boys surrounding Brian Wilson’s piano for the heartfelt, doo-wop of “Add Some Music To Your Day.” It seemed that the later half of the show contained the more mature, psychedelic song-writing of Brian Wilson as the band performed songs from Wilson’s masterpiece “Pet Sounds” and the newly release “Smile.” The night also included performances from past members Dennis Wilson (“Forever”) and Carl Wilson (“God Only Knows”) via video screens. Another treat that evening was the inclusion of their brand-new single “That’s Why God Made The Radio” which fit in perfectly with the evenings other songs.

The over two hour performance finished with the entire arena on their feet, singing the chorus to “Help Me Rhonda” and dancing to “Surfin’ U.S.A.” As the audience waited patiently for more, they were greeted with a mellow, low-key version of “Kokomo,” before picking the tempo back up with “Good Vibrations” and “Fun, Fun, Fun.”

While each person in that arena reminisced about the first time they heard those songs, The Beach Boys gave the audience another wonderful memory of hearing their timeless music.

Setlist: Do It Again, Catch A Wave, Hawaii, Don't Back Down, Surfin' Safari, Surfer Girl, Please Let Me Wonder, You're So Good To Me, Dance Dance Dance, Kiss Me Baby, Then I Kissed Her, Why Do Fools Fall In Love, When I Grow Up (To Be A Man), Cotton Fields, Marcella, Be True To Your School, Disney Girls, Don't Worry Baby, Little Honda, Little Deuce Coupe, 409, Shut Down, I Get Around
Add Some Music To Your Day, California Dreamin', Sloop John B, Wouldn't It Be Nice, I Just Wasn't Made For These Times, Forever, Sail On Sailor, Heroes And Villains, In My Room, All This Is That, God Only Knows, That's Why God Made The Radio, California Girls, All Summer Long, Help Me Rhonda, Rock And Roll Music, Do You Wanna Dance?, Barbara Ann, Surfin' U.S.A.
Kokomo, Good Vibrations, Fun Fun Fun

Sunday, May 13, 2012

DVD Review: Stony Island Brings The Sounds Of The Seventies To DVD

New from Cinema Libre Studios is the movie "Stony Island." It is available for the first time on DVD and features a great story about the trials and tribulations of becoming a successful band. It doesn’t matter what type of musical genre you prefer, this movie shows the work and dedication it takes to makes your dreams come true.

"Stony Island" takes place in Chicago in the seventies. It follows mainly these three talented musicians working at dead-end jobs, practicing their hearts out until one of them actually ends up paying the ultimate price. The friendship between the main characters of Richie, Kevin and Percy show us the comradery between band mates and breaks down the racial barriers without violence.

The funk super-group entitled the “Stony Island Band” and creates some of the funkiest beats and rhythms that the soundtrack alone would demand your attention. This 12-piece band along including Richard Davis on guitar, Edward “Stony” Robinson on vocals and Gene “Daddy G” Barge on sax give the perfect soundtrack to the streets of Chicago. While the actors give no Oscar winning performances, this movie is about the heart of the music and how it makes you feel.

Director Andrew Davis does a great job keeping the story flowing, while focusing on the music and how differently it affects the lives of the people involved. In the end, you find out if it was all worth the time, effort and heart that it took to make it. Also, included on the DVD is a 36-minute feature that catches up with the actors, musicians and people behind the scenes and how much this movie meant to them.

A great piece of movie and music history finally finds a home on DVD. For more information, please visit and

Saturday, May 12, 2012

CD Review: Patrick Appello Finds Romance With His Guitar

Classically trained guitarist Patrick Appello released his most recent project, a collection of “romantic guitar” songs performed on an 1846 Rene Lacote guitar. The collection is called “The Last Rose of Summer” and was self-produced and self-released on March 6th.

The album covers classical songs by Franz Schubert, Johann Kasper Mertz and Mauro Giuliani. Apello’s performance on the opening piece “Opern-Review ‘Lucia di Lammermoor (after Donizetti)” is just a wonderful musical piece that sets the stage for the rest of this album. The intricacy of his performance of “The Last Rose Of Summer” is so heartfelt with only a classical guitar to portray the feelings that Appello seems to pull this off with ease. His delivery of the four pieces of music from the “Giuilianiate” places you back to a simpler time when one instrument was all that was needed to entertain.

To find out more about this wonderful release and to hear song samples by the enormously talented Patrick Appello, please visit

Friday, May 11, 2012

CD Review: White Label Return to 1972 With "Stolen Voices" EP

White Label returns, after the success of last year's "Stolen Voices" LP, to give us the "Stolen Voices 1972 EP." The new EP features 4 songs that were originally recorded in the year 1972.

The EP begins with a wonderful reworking of Neil Young's "Everybody's Alone." The way White Label handle the music in order to enhance the song is just amazing. The lush, modern orchestra seems like the perfect fit for Neil's fragile, demo vocals. The next song combines two unreleased Marc Bolan demos into one truly great song. Combining the songs "Would I Be The One" and "Is It True" seem like the perfect fit for the newest release from Bolan's band T.Rex. A vocal track from Roberta Flack's song "Trade Winds" gets a refreshing remake with music that modernizes the song's strong vocals. The EP finishes with a duet between Fred Neil and Mickey Newbury. Listening to this song, you would never know that this duet never actually took place.

For more information on White Label and to check these songs for yourself, please visit

Thursday, May 10, 2012

CD Review: New Rock Albums From Bible of the Devil and My Dynamite

Coming this May are two new hard-rocking releases that you need to give a listen to. First is the new release from the veteran Chicago rock band Bible Of The Devil, the second is the debut album from the southern rockers My Dynamite.
Bible of the Devil released their sixth album on May 8 through Cruz Del Sur Music. The new album entitled “For The Love Of Thugs And Fools” is a classic rock n’ roll album with hints of hard rock and heavy metal.
The album begins with “Sexual Overture/While You Were Away,” that starts out with a Pink Floydian introduction, which quickly turns into a great adrenaline pumping opening song that sets the stage for the rest of the album. Their strength, power and speed shine through on “Out For Blood,” while the duel-guitar attack of “Raw and Order” is highlighted by Mark Hoffmann’s vocals. The band switches gears slightly on “Anytime” invoking a more classic rock guitar rock anthem with a great simple, sing-along chorus. Bible Of The Devil return to their heavy guitar riffs on “Can’t Turn Off The Sun,” before finishing the album with the New Wave of British Heavy Metal sounding “Night Street.”
Bible Of The Devil recently kicked off their spring tour packed with live shows almost every day. For more information on the band’s new album “For The Love Of Thugs and Fools” and for a complete list of tour dates please visit
Next up is My Dynamite with their self-titled debut album. Their sound combines the southern blues-rock of The Black Crowes with the big guitars of Humble Pie and Led Zeppelin. The album is out now through Listenable Records.
Right from the opening track “Take or Leave It,” you notice their love of combining southern rock with soul. The band blazes a trail with some amazing guitar solos as in “If We’re Livin’” and “Watch Yourself Grow.” My Dynamite bring out their southern anthem “Raise Your Glasses,” then slow down for the bluesy “Singing Stormy Weather.” The album closes with the funk filled “All That She Brings” and the swamp rock of “Fork In Your Tongue” which will have you singing and clapping along to the blues beat. 
My Dynamite recently performed at the 6th Annual Cherry Rock festival in Australia. They currently have no new live dates, but be sure to visit for updates.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

CD Review: Yes' Jon Anderson Gives A Boost To "The Highest Pass" Soundtrack

Filmmaker Jon Fitzgerald set out to create a film about finding your inner strength. What he filmed was a candid look overcoming your fears and becoming one with your surroundings. The movie is called “The Highest Pass” and it follows the journey of seven American motorcyclist as they pass through the Himalayas of India on motorcycles. Their spiritual leader and directional guide is a 27-year old yogi/zen master who helps these individuals conquer their weakness in-order to find peace within themselves.

In association with the movie is the accompanying soundtrack created by Michael R. Mollura. His Indian orchestra creates some of the most relaxing, meditative music ever heard in a film before. He has also instilled the help of Yes frontman Jon Anderson who lends is vocals to the title song and also to the song “Waking Up,” one of the few meditative songs with vocals. Anderson’s performance of “The Highest Pass Title Song” gives the song a more progressive sound, instead of a meditative. Instrumentals like “Shiva Groove” and “Moola Dance” introduce you to some of the Eastern world sounds that are not very common in the U.S. Other stars on this soundtrack are Violeta V. with her warming vocals on “Goddess Call” and Marty Lieberman’s sitar performance in “Anand’s Theme.” 

The film opened on April 27 and has won numerous film festival awards. The soundtrack is available now on iTunes ( For more information, please visit

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

CD Review: Victory Records Unleases New Releases By Taproot, Emmure & God Forbid

Victory Records recently released three new albums by some of the best bands in the modern metal era. Taproot, Emmure and God Forbid are all riding a successful, creative high and their new albums are a testament to their constant evolving.

First up is Taproot with their new album “The Episodes.” The album cracked the top 200 Billboard Album chart upon its release and the album’s first single, “No Surrender” is a Top 40 hit on the U.S. Mainstream charts. The song is a gut-wrenching rocker that uses some voice modifications along with blazing guitars and pounding drumbeat to create the perfect introduction to the album. Other songs on the album like “Good Morning,”  “Lost Boy” and “A Golden Grey” carry a hard rock edge that makes Taproot stand out in the metal community.

Taproot is beginning their tour on May 18 in Chicago. They will be making a stop along the east coast with a show at the Webster Theatre in Hartford, CT on June 1. For a complete list of live shows, as well as song samples and videos please check out

Newly re-signed metal artists Emmure just released their fifth album on Victory Records entitled “Slave To The Game.” The album debuted at #58 on the Billboard album charts upon its release in April and is the first album to feature new drummer Mark Castillo.

The 12-song, 32-minute album is an attack on the senses with its neck breaking speed drumming and aggressive vocals. Songs like “She Gave Her Heart To Deadpool,” “Poltergeist” and many other of the songs refer to Marvel comic books, while “Protoman” is a reference to a character in the Mega Man video game. The album’s two singles “Proto Man” and “I Am Onslaught” bring out the best this album has to offer with hard, loud vocals and buzzsaw guitars.

Emmure will be performing at The Bamboozle Festival on May 19 before heading over to play in Europe for the summer. Go to the band’s myspace page ( for a complete list of tour dates and for more information on the new album.

Heavy metal band, God Forbid is the newest members to Victory Records, but they have been around over 15 years. Their new album “Equilibrium” was released at the end of March and shows how the band has grown and matured with their song-writing and performing.

The album begins with the attack of “Don’t Tell Me What To Dream,” but quickly turn to a more progressive metal approach on “My Rebirth” and “Equilibrium.” The guitar solo in “Overcome” and the drumming power in “Cornered” are just a couple of the examples of how talented these musicians are. The album closes with the first single, “Where We Come From.” While it may not be the best song on the album, it certainly displays the great musicianship and aggressiveness of the new album.

God Forbid is currently touring the U.S. with Five Finger Death Punch and Killswitch Engage in support of the new album. They will perform at the Oakdale Theater in Wallingford, CT on August 15. For more information, check out God Forbid’s artist page ( on the Victory records website.

Monday, May 7, 2012

CD Review: P.J. Pacifico Pleases Fans With Live EP

In the spring of 2011, P.J. Pacifico released his acclaimed studio album “Outlet” and set out to tour along the east coast. One specific show was capture for P.J.’s next release, a seven-song live EP. It was recorded in Southport, CT in May 2011.

The album is a great testament to P.J.’s talents for performing live. His voice is in perfect form and his only companion is an acoustic guitar. He pours his heart into the emotional “The Girl From Montreal” and really hits his mark on “Targets.” It’s nice to hear the little banter between P.J. and the crowd as they give him such a warm reception. The EP closes with the folk-style storytelling of “Something Nobody Knows.”

P.J. Pacifico will begin his tour on May 11 with a couple of shows in Greejwich and Trumbull, Connecticut before heading overseas to the Netherlands. P.J. will return to the states in mid-June with a load of dates that continue through October. His new live EP will become available on May 22nd through Viper Records. For more information and a complete list of tour dates, please visit

CD Review: Mars Volta Go Progressive With Concept Art-Piece "Noctourniquet"

Progressive, art-rock band Mars Volta return with their sixth album entitled “Noctourniquet.” It was produced by guitarist Omar Rodriguez-Lopez and it's the first album to feature new drummer Deantoni Parks. The new release is considered a concept album according to singer Cedric Bixler Zavala. He stated "It's about embracing life for what it should be. There's a view of the elitist lifestyle - that being an artist is unattainable. I'm trying to write this story that reminds people that we're all artists.”

The album begins with a guitar-driven, fuzzed blast of “The Whip Hand.” Zavala’s vocals have never sounded better as he flexes his pipes on “Aegis.” The band show their diversity with the quiet, mellow “Empty Vessels Make The Loudest Sound” and their electronic, keyboard-filled “Lapochka” and “Imago.” Mars Volta are at their best when they combine their electronics with loud rock guitars and drums as in the album’s first single “The Makin’ Jewel” and “Molochwalker.” The band turns on their progressive charm with the album closers “Noctourniquet” and “Zed and Two Naughts.”

The album debuted at #15 on the Billboard album chart upon its release back in March and has received very positive reviews. Mars Volta will be performing over in Europe from the beginning of June until mid-July. For a complete list of tour dates and more information on the new album, be sure to visit

Sunday, May 6, 2012

CD Review: Soulfly Hit An Agressive High With "Enslaved"

Heavy metal band Soulfly recently released their eighth studio album entitled “Enslaved.” It is the first album to feature the new rhythm section of Tony Campos (Ministry) on bass and David Kinkade (Borknagar) on drums. The songs on this album are very aggressive, but are also more structured and addictive than past albums.

The album begins with “Resistance,” a two-minute blast that gets the heart pumping for the album’s first single “World Scum.” Vocalist Max Cavalera gets some vocal help on this album from DevilDriver’s Dez Fafara and Cattle Decapitation’s Travis Ryan. Songs like “Gladiator” and “American Steel” are the perfect battle cries as the addition of new band members help Soulfly evolve their sound. The highlight of the album is the tempo changing “Redemption of Man by God” as Fafara adds that extra aggressive strength to the vocals. Soulfly bring you on a metal journey with the seven-plus minute “Chains” before ending with the experimental groove of “Revengeance.”

Soulfly have a few dates left on this tour in Texas and New Mexico. “Enslaved” cracked the top 100 on the Billboard album chart upon it release in March. For more information, check out

Saturday, May 5, 2012

CD Review: Metal Music On The Rise With Cancer Bats and Horisont

Hardcore metal band Cancer Bats have recently released their fourth album entitled "Dead Set on Living" and are hitting the road hard to promote it. The band keeps the winning formula together with producers Eric Ratz and Kenny Luong and recording at the legendary Vespa Studios. According to vocalist Liam Cormier this album is more "upbeat" compared to 2010's "Bear, Mayors, Scraps & Bones."

Cancer Bats come out swinging with the aggressive "R.A.T.S." It features guest vocals from Rob Urbanati of the band Sacrifice as the vocals and lyrics set the stage for what this album has to offer. The band wanted to bridge the gap between their live shows and their studio albums and I think this one hit the mark. Songs like "Bricks and Mortar" and "Dead Set On Living" are so powerful, you feel like Cancer Bats are right in your face performing. The album's first single "Old Blood" displays the talents of this band at neck breaking speed and energy. DevilDriver's Dex Fafara and An Horse's Kate Cooper guest on the drum-pounding, hard rocking "Bastards!" The album closes with the deep, heavy groove of "New World Alliance" and the band wait until the end to mix tempos.

The new album, "Dead Set on Living" debuted in the Top 50 on the UK album charts when it was released there at the beginning of April. They are currently on tour in Canada, then they will be heading overseas to play a load of shows in Europe. For more on the Cancer Bats, be sure to check out their website (

Swedish metal band Horisont return with their follow-up album entitled “Second Assault.” The album is a throwback to when heavy metal was just starting in Europe with bands like Judas Priest and the Scorpions. They combine the mystical feeling of Black Sabbath with the big guitar sounds of Grand Funk Railroad and Deep Purple.

The new album begins with “Time Warrior,” a great classic metal groove highlighted by Axel’s high-pitched vocals. Horisont pay tribute to Rainbow with their slow, but powerful delivery of “Crusaders of Death” that highlights the guitar attack of Kristofer and Charles. The tempo picks up on “Second Assault” as they lock in to one of the heavier songs on the album. The band mixes in a King Crimson, jazzy-rock approach to “Things I’ve Seen,” before finishing with “Thunderflight” which bookends the album nicely with a great metal groove.

Horisont have a busy summer ahead of them with about a dozen dates scattered throughout Europe. For more information on the band, check out their myspace page (

Friday, May 4, 2012

DVD Review: Neil Finn Brings Together His 7 Worlds For "The Sun Came Out"

In 2001, musician Neil Finn (Crowded House) gathered many different, established musicians for a charity event in Aukland, New Zealend. On the bill were Pearl Jam's Eddie Vedder, The Smith's Johnny Marr, Radiohead's Ed O'Brien and Phil Selway, Soul Coughing's Sebastian Steinberg and Lisa Germano. The band was called 7 Worlds Collide and was a huge success.

Fast forward to 2008 and Neil Finn decided to bring the band back together, but this time they would record an album of new material in addition to the charity concerts. The project was also recorded on film by director Simon Mark-Brown and released on video by Cinema Libre Studio. The DVD is called "The Sun Came Out" and was released on April 10.

The DVD begins with a very brief introduction of the 2001 charity event, but alot more is included as the bonus feature on the DVD. The video shows you how much work went in to created an album of brand-new material with 20 different musicians that would normally not perform together. Many of the same musicians from 2001 returned for this event and even a few more were added like Wilco and KT Tunstall. It's great to see the different musical styles between the musicians, but watching the video you can see how they are all inspired to perform their best for Finn's 7 Worlds Collide project.

The 2 hour DVD puts you right in the studio as the musicians discuss and argue the different ways they want their songs to end up. The musicians are very vunerable and candid infront of the cameras which makes you feel like a fly on the wall hearing these great songs be created from scratch. One great example is watching Jeff Tweedy and Neil Finn colaborate on songs.

The video also captures many of the great landscapes of New Zealand. Some of these images could have become the perfect backdrop for a documentary on the wonders of the world. One of the highlights is the inclusion of KT Tunstall and how she came to join 7 Worlds Collide and her collaboration with Bic Runga.

The only drawback is that you do not get a lot of complete takes of the songs either in the studio or live. It is almost like a video montage of many of these songs starting out, then turning into the wonderful live songs that they end up becoming. I only wish all the shows were featured as a seperate bonus like the 2001 show is.

If you are a fan of any of the artists on this DVD or you just live documentaties, this is one you need to have in your colleciton. The filiming was great and some of the moments captured on this DVD are amazing. For more information on this release, please check out and