Monday, March 2, 2015

CD Review: New Independent Music From Mimes On Rollercoasters, The Shams And The Sirkis/Bialas International Quartet

First, from Chicago comes the third album from progressive pop rockers Mimes On Rollercoasters telling the adventures of Marcel and Mimi Mime. The band's latest concept album continues the story of these two young mimes, but its the music that is what catches your attention. Their latest ten-song release begins with "Labor Of Life" as the music flows between synth-heavy eighties pop and early, heavy prog-rock. They have a wider sound with "Sunshine" as the music's up-tempo rhythm becomes very infectious. Their music on this release carries a very modern rock vibe with the occasional overuse of keyboards and synthesizers, but it also gives songs like "Painting On Sad Eyes" and "I Walk Alone" a mainstream appeal that is geared toward adult contemporary radio. The new album will be available on March 21st. To find out more about Mimes On Rollercoasters, please visit
Next, from San Francisco, CA comes the latest album from The Shams entitled "One And All." The six-song EP was released on February 24th and displays the band's Irish infused rock. Beginning with "Sunset Paddy's" the band gets things moving quickly with this guitar driven rocker as the chorus showcases their love for Ireland. Their music places you in the pubs with a pint in your had during the sing-along of "Go On Home Boys" and "One And All." The Shams showcase their Irish influences in the closer "Sick To Death" as they inject punk into the song's Celtic melody. To find more about The Shams and their latest release "One And All," please visit
On a different note, comes the latest release from the Sirkis/Bialas International Quartet entitled "Come To Me." The quartet features drummer/composer Asaf Sirkis, singer/composer Sylwia Bialas, bassist Patrick Bettison and pianist Frank Harrison. Both Sirkis and Bialas have been featured in other bands, but this is their first collaboration. The new release starts out with the eight-minute gentle glide of "Come To Me" as Bialas' angelic voice soothes your worries. The band takes on a more leading role in "Dreams Dreams," before picking up the tempo for the smooth jazz feel of "Vortex." Bialas uses her voice as an instrument as displayed in "A Hymn," while Bettison's harmonica leads the way on "Mandragora," before his duties change over to his bass. The album closes with the rhythm heavy eight-minute "Orgon" as you notice the bond between Sirkis and Bialas. To find out more about the Sirkis/Bialas International Quartet, please visit their Facebook page at

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