Monday, December 31, 2018

Re-Discover The Music Of Phenomena With A Trio Of New Re-Issues

We close out the year with a trio of new, definitive edition releases from the U.K. band, Phenomena. The band was created by brothers Tom Galley (producer) and Mel Galley (Whitesnake) and features contributions from other artists like Brian May, John Wetton, Glenn Hughes, Don Airey and Cozy Powell, who are just a handful of amazing artists on the band's first three albums.

Phenomena released their first self-titled album in 1984, which actually charted on the U.K. music charts. It features the stellar vocals of Glenn Hughes as the band had their finger on the pulse of rock music in the mid-eighties. They quickly followed up their debut album with 1987's concept "Dream Runner," which was rare in the eighties. This album mixed in vocal contributions from Ray Gillen (Black Sabbath) and John Wetton, as the songs varied from the progressive pop style of "Did It All For Love" to the heavier rock approach of "No Retreat, No Surrender." Even singer Max Bacon (GTR) left his mark with the epic sounding ballad "It Must Be Love."

Phenomena closed out their trio of concept albums with 1993's "Innervision," which felt like the most complete work from the band. Singer Keith Murray was the sole singer on the album, as the songs featured a smoother sound, like the Queen-inspired "What About Love?" and the guitar-driven, mid-tempo melody of "A Whole Lotta Love." This album also featured the guitar work of Brian May (Queen) and Scott Gorham (Thin Lizzy), as the band could still pulsate the energy with the best of them, like in "Rock House" and "If You Want To Rock."

The band ended up going into hiatus for over a decade, before Tom Galley resurrected the band with another trio of albums. To find out more about these new definite editions of the first three album from Phenomena, please visit cherryred.co.uk.

Sunday, December 30, 2018

New Releases From British Music Legends The Curved Air and French Composer Alan Simon

Legendary British progressive rockers Curved Air continue their ongoing "Rarities" series with the newly released "The Second British Rock Meeting 1972." This third volume of the series highlights Curved Air's 1972 appearance at this yearly British Rock Meeting festival, which was also was attended by the likes of Pink Floyd, Deep Purple, Uriah Heep and many others. Curved Air's five-song set begins with the band warming up to the the rhythm of "No-Guitar Blues," before heading off into the rock stratosphere with the clash of "Everdance/Cheetah/Vivaldi." The recording is not perfect, but for early 1970s standards, it is damn good, considering this was never planned for an official release. After the quiet acoustics of "Melinda (More or Less)," Curved Air close out their defining set with the thirty minute improvisational "The Germersheim Jam/Vivaldi (revise)." To find out more about Curved Air and their new release "The Second British Rock Meeting 1972," please visit cherryred.co.uk.


The ongoing rock opera "Excalibur" series is the brainchild of French musician, Alan Simon, which began back in 1999. After releasing the fourth chapter in the series in 2017, this year Simon released his first compilation of his series. The new release titled "The Ladies Of The Lake," revolve around a tribute to the ladies of "Excalibur." The new 15-song set begins with "The Origins" from "Excalibur III" and features the dreamlike vocals of Moya Brennan. English folk singer, Maddy Prior adds her beautiful voice to the gentle acoustics of "Secret Garden," while the angelic sound of Siobhan Owen's vocals grace the lovely sounds of "The Last Lament Of A Fairy" and "Yseult." Curved Air vocalist Sonja Kristina lends her talents to "The Passion," from Simon's most recent "Excalibur IV" release. The compilation closes with the Spanish-born singer, Maite Itoiz adding her operatic sound to "Dun Angus." To find out more about "Excalibur: The Ladies Of The Lake," please visit cherryred.co.uk.

Saturday, December 29, 2018

Hunt Sales Makes His Return With A Brand New Studio Album

Music artist Hunt Sales may not be as common a name as David Bowie, Iggy Pop or Todd Rundgren, but Sales had a helping hand in each of their careers. Sales worked with Bowie in Tin Machine, had a hand in Iggy Pop's single, "Lust For Life" and helped kick off Rundgren's successful solo career. Now, it's Hunt Sales turn to shine with his new release titled "Get Your Shit Together," which will be released on January 25th, through Big Legal Mess (Fat Possum Records). Sales is a recovering heroin addict, who has replaced the drugs in his life with music and his new outfit, the Hunt Sales Memorial will re-establish Sales as the premier artist he once was

His new album kicks off with the high-energy rocker "Here I Go Again," as you see sparks of Sales classic artistry. He continues with the nostalgic seventies rock of "Angel Of Darkness," as Sales' rough vocals adds experience to the song's lyrics. The big guitar sound of "Tides That Bind" and "I Can't Stop" show that Hunt Sales is out for revenge to capture his life back from his many years of abuse and addiction. He flexes his punk-rock muscle with the quick run through of "Way On My Own," before finishing up his new album with the blues romp of "It Ain't Easy" and three-minute instrumental rocker "Cleveland Street Memphis." To find out more about the Hunt Sales Memorial and their latest release "Get Your Shit Together," please visit facebook.com/TheHuntSalesMemorial.

Friday, December 28, 2018

New Music From Indie-Artists Ocean Potion, Mode Moderne, Daniel Isaiah and David McFarlane

The duo of Mike O’Brien and Jason Haberman have teamed up with Dave Azzolini (Forces) and Jay McCarol (Brave Shores) to release the debut album from their collaboration, Ocean Potion. Their new self-titled release features ten tracks, beginning with the exploring melody of "Anywhere" and dreamy rock vibe of "In The Grass." Their sound becomes very addictive with the rhythm of "Rum Tape" and the light, atmospheric melody of "Under The Sun." The steady beats of "You Know You" and "Reflection" have a modern rock sound that should definitely shine a light on this new recording. To find out more about Ocean Potion and their new self-titled release, please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/oceanpotionband.


Next, from British Columbia comes the latest release from Mode Moderne titled "Ghost Emerging." The album features seven tracks, beginning with the steady, alternative pop melody of "Oui Madame" and wildly addictive melody of "Moderne Love." The band's sound also carries a nostalgic feel, featured in the new wave flow of "Hounds Of Love," but not before Mode Moderne finish their new album with the upbeat, post-punk appeal of "Doomy Daydream" and the consistent delivery of "Piss And Flowery Poetry." To find out more about Mode Moderne and their latest release "Ghost Emerging," please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/modemodernemusic.


Singer/songwriter Daniel Isaiah has been working on his full-length debut album for the past two years. The new release titled "Only One Left" features nine tracks that explore Daniel's full songwriting potential. Whether its writing a pop song like "Love Love Love" or the meaningful, storied lyrics of "Till The Deal Is Done," Daniel has been mastering his sound during those last two years. The gentle touch of "Designer Designer" and "Lay Down" allows you to focus on the delivery of his dreamlike vocals, before his finishes his new album with the quiet ballad, "Three Months Emily." To find out more about Daniel Isaiah and his latest release "Only One Left," please visit his Facebook page at facebook.com/danisaiah.


From Toronto, Canada comes the latest release from singer/songwriter David McFarlane. His new album "Fieldwork" features eleven tracks, beginning with the steady guitar driven pace of "Miss Kubelik" and the uptempo, pop/rock appeal of "River Of News." He slows down the pace for the wonderful melody of "As Usual" and the acoustic-based strumming of "Rongwrong" that simply draws you in to David's musical world. He continues with the blues vibe of "Caledonia" and "1982," before finishing his new album with atmospheric passion of "Pattern Of You." To find out more about David McFarlane and his latest release "Fieldwork," please visit auteurresearch.com.

Thursday, December 27, 2018

Check Out New Music From Valleyheart, Palisades, Cane Hill, King 810 and Set It Off

Earlier this month, Massachusetts alternative rockers Valleyheart released their new album "Everyone I've Ever Loved," through Rise Records. It features 11-tracks, beginning with the addictive melody of "Heaven & Hell," which sounds perfectly tailored for modern rock radio. They keep the tempo flowing with the steady pace of "Friends In The Foyer" and "Crave," as you will easily become attached to the music of Valleyheart. The melody just floats on by during the atmospheric ballad "Drowning In Living Waters," while the acoustic strumming of emotions headlines "Your Name" along with the gentle piano delivery of "Paradisum." To find out more about Valleyheart and their latest release "Everyone I've Ever Loved," please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/valleyheartma.


Another new release from Rise Records comes in the form of "Erase The Pain," from New Jersey rockers Palisades. Their new ten-song album begins with the built-up anthem of "Vendetta" and the more aggressive feel of "Erase The Pain." The band has perfected their modern metal sound over the course of their last four albums, as songs like "Fade" and "Run Away" sound ready-made for hard rock radio. The power in the band's songwriting comes shining through on the tempo changes of "Ghost" and "Patient," before finishing their new album with passionate, high energy of "Shed My Skin." To find out more about Palisades and their latest release "Erase The Pain," please visit wearepalisades.com.


Arriving January 18th, is the new album from Cane Hill titled "Kill The Sun." The band will be joining Sevendust on tour in February to promote the new album. It begins with the slow build-up of "86d - No Escort" and the acoustic-based, exciting groove of "Empty." The new release from Cane Hill only features six songs, including the progressive feel of "Save Me" and the high-energy, unplugged melody of "Acid Rain," before closing with the most aggressive track on the album, "Smoking Man." For a complete list of live dates and to find out more about "Kill The Sun," the latest release from Cane Hill, please visit wearecanehill.com.


Arriving January 25th is the new self-released album from Michigan-based band, King 810. Their new album titled "Suicide King" features ten hard-hitting tracks, beginning with the exciting, nu-metal appeal of "Heartbeats" and aggressive juggernaut "Braveheart." King 810 paint a bleak picture of the streets with the lyrics of "Bang Guns" and ".45," as they work in a hip-hop style to these dark anthems. The album continues with the electronic beats of "What's Gotten Into Me," before shifting gears to the deep emotions of "Black Rifle." King 810 close out their new album with the metal ballad "Wade In The Water" and the metal/hip-hop mix of "Sing Me To Sleep." To find out more about King 810 and their latest release "Suicide King," please visit king810.com.


Then in February, we get the Fearless Records debut release from rockers, Set It Off. Their new album titled "Midnight," features 15-tracks, beginning with the high-energy output of "Killer In The Mirror" and more mainstream, alternative-pop of "Hourglass." The album continues with the highly addictive, up-tempo beats of "Lonely Dance" and "Different Songs." The band, The Wayfarers lend a hand to the pop/dance feel of "Go To Bed Angry," before returning to the more rock oriented "Criminal Minds." You will simply fall in love with the groove of "No Disrespect," as this was tailor-made for radio. Set It Off finish up their new album with the short piano ballad "Unopened Windows" and the addictive rhythm of "Happy All The Time." To find out more about Set It Off and their latest release "Midnight," please visit setitoffband.com.

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Harmony In Diversity Features Peter Banks' Best Work Outside Of YES

Guitar legend, Peter Banks left us way too early at the age of 65. He was a founding member of the bands YES and Flash, and worked along side fellow musicians Phil Collins, Pete Townshend and Elton John, just to name a few. In honor of the 5th anniversary of his passing, as well as the upcoming 50th anniversary of YES, the Peter Banks Estate released "The Complete Recordings" from Banks' band, Harmony In Diversity.

The new 6-CD set features all of the previously unreleased recordings that Harmony In Diversity made between 2005 to 2007. Only one album from these sessions has been officially released, as we now get over 40 songs that the band recorded in the studio. All of the songs are highlighted by Banks' exceptional guitar work. As soon as you pop in the first disc "Struggles Discontinued," you will not be able to stop listening.

The accompanying 36-page booklet features new write-ups about each disc by fellow band member, Andrew Booker. Disc two of the set titled, "What Is This?" feels especially personal as it only features Booker and Banks on four outstanding instrumentals that will just make your jaw drop. Disc four titled "Hitting The Fans (Live)," showcases the trio of Banks, Booker and bassist, Nick Cottam in a live setting as the disc features highlights from the band performing in concert between 2005-2006.

The final disc in this set showcases the most recent work of Harmony In Diversity (2006-2007) as Andrew Booker was replaced on the drums with Dave Speight. If you haven't already realized what an amazing guitarist Peter Banks was, then this set will prove that fact and then some. Banks was a genius songwriter and composer, as his music always left you with surprise and amazement as you followed him along on his sonic journeys. To find out more about this new 6-CD set, "The Complete Recordings" from Harmony In Diversity, please visit cherryred.co.uk.

Sunday, December 23, 2018

The Paul McCartney Archive Collection Continues To Roll On With Classic Wings Albums

Early this month, MPL/Capitol/UMe teamed up to release the latest albums into the ongoing Paul McCartney Archive Collection. This time around features the debut release from his post-Beatles band, Wings with "Wild Life" and the follow-up album "Red Rose Speedway." Both albums were originally released by Apple Corp. in the early seventies and features McCartney's first band work, since leaving The Beatles.

Both albums get the deluxe treatment, adding loads of bonus tracks including acoustic home demos, studio rehearsals and previously released B-sides. The "Wild Life" album showcases McCartney expanding his sound, with the help of his wife Linda McCartney, Denny Laine (Moody Blues) and Denny Seiwell. This new set features a new 2018 remastered version of the album, with a new accompanying "rough mix" of the album. Fan will want to dig into the "home recordings," which includes many gems, like a short version of "Good Rockin' Tonight" and a loose, fun run though "Hey Diddle." The set also includes early ideas of songs that did not make the final album like "She Got It Good," "Indeed I Do" and "When The Wind Is Blowing." Closing out this 3 CD set are the singles "Give Ireland Back To The Irish" and "Love Is Strange," along with an energetic band sing along, "African Yeah Yeah." The accompanying DVD shows footage of Wings in Scotland in 1971, the record release party at "The Ball" and some rare rehearsal footage. The limited edition deluxe edition is highlighted by a 128-page book featuring a new essay about Paul McCartney and Wings by "Rolling Stones" magazine senior editor David Fricke, along with a facsimile of McCartney's notebook, Polaroids and an invite to "The Ball" launch party.

Paul McCartney and Wings followed the release of "Wild Life" with "Red Rose Speedway," which topped the charts in 1973 and included the number one single, "My Love." This new deluxe edition release includes a new 2018 remaster of the original album, along with 35 bonus tracks, including a reconstruction of the original concept of a double album. The band was on a creative high, producing and finishing 18 songs for what would have been double album, but ended up only using half for the album's original release. The bonus audio features early mixes of songs like "Little Lamb Dragonfly" and "Big Barn Bed," as well as a home recording and live version of the song "1882," which was left off the original version of "Red Rose Speedway." Wings also produced some of their best known singles during this period like "Hi, Hi, Hi," "C Moon" and "Live And Let Die," which all appear as bonus songs in this set.

The limited deluxe edition of "Red Rose Speedway" also comes with two DVDs and a Blu-ray, which include the never before seen, fully restored film, "The Bruce McMouse Show." A 128-page book features a new written essay by Amanda Petrusich of "The New Yorker," as well as 64-page photo book, which contains replicas of Paul McCartney's sketches and handwritten lyric sheets. Both of these sets will allow fans to dig deeper into the musical world of Paul McCartney and Wings. To find out more about the new deluxe editions of "Wild Life" and "Red Rose Speedway," please visit paulmccartney.com.

Saturday, December 22, 2018

New Music From Prog-Rock Legends Focus and The Gardening Club

Dutch progressive rock music legends, Focus are continuing to roll out new music as the band are in their fifth decade, as Thijs van Leer and Pierre van der Linden have been leading with way since 1970. The new studio album titled "Focus 11" features eleven tracks, beginning with the intense instrumental "Who's Calling." The addition of guitarist Menno Gootjes and bassist Udo Pannekeet have helped renew the band's energy, as they rock their way through the technical feel of "Mazzel" and the excitement of "Palindrome." Focus also showcase their softer side with the gentle ballad "Clair Obscure," before finishing their new album with the pounding rhythm of "Final Analysis" and the steady pace of "Focus 11." To find out more about Focus and their latest release "Focus 11," please visit focustheband.com.

From the U.K. comes the latest release from the progressive rock band, The Gardening Club. The new album titled "The Riddle" was in response to the overwhelming success that the band received for the reissue of their 1983 self-titled album. The idea of The Gardening Club's new 15-track release began back in October 2017, as different players changed the outcome of the songs over the course of the following year.

Beginning with the wonderful "The Riddle Overture," you are prepared for a sonically-filled soundtrack supplied by The Gardening Club. They deliver a nostalgic feel on "Whirled Away," while the atmospheric "Seven Year Old Poet" contains elements of folk and blues. The band's excitement for recording again comes shining through the uptempo sounds of "Leaving Home" and "Notes On The Affair." The Gardening Club wrap up their new album with the beautiful melody of "Tears At The Matinee" and the guitar driven closing instrumental "Overture Reprise." To find out more about The Gardening Club and their latest release, "The Riddle," please visit gardeningclubmusicandart.ca.

Friday, December 21, 2018

Check Out New Music From Reverend Horton Heat and 500 Miles To Memphis

After nearly five years, rockabilly superstar, Reverend Horton Heat (Jim Heath) is ready to return to the spotlight, with his long-time partner Jimbo Wallace, with a new album titled "Whole New Life." The new 11-song release begins with the fast-paced, swinging rhythm of the title song "Whole New Life" and the bluesy romp of "Hog Tyin' Woman." Heath displays his Texas roots, with finger-picking melody of "Hate To See You Cry" and will have you singing along in no time with "Got It In My Pocket." Jimbo Wallace, master of the slap-bass, steadies the pace of "Ride Before The Fall," while Heath's guitar work is spread all over "Wonky." Reverend Horton Heat closes up their new album with a cover of Elvis Presley's "Viva Las Vegas," which adds a Latin-flair to the song's swift tempo. Reverent Horton Heat have live shows lined-up all the way through April 2019. For a complete list of dates and to find out more about the new album "Whole New Life," please visit reverendhortonheat.com.


From Cincinnati comes the latest release from the punk/rock band 500 Miles To Memphis. Their new album titled "Blessed Be The Damned" will be released on January 25th and features eleven high-energy tracks that will turn you into an instant fan. They begin with the clash of Americana-style and punk rawness on the opener "The River." The members of 500 Miles To Memphis approached this album differently from their last four releases, as they tried to draw upon more of the influences of their Appalachian region. They add a bit of bluegrass strumming into "Bonnie," while "Hold On Tight" is an all-out punk rock assault. Next, they deliver the rockabilly swing of "I Said Babe" and the classic guitar-driven blast of "No Doubt About It." Philip Peeples, from the Old 97's, lends a hand on the quick pace of the sing-along anthem "Save Me," before 500 Miles To Memphis wrap up their new album with hardcore punk attack of "What A Waste" and the quieter melody of "I'm A Bastard." To find out more about 500 Miles To Memphis and their latest release "Blessed Be The Damned," please visit 500mtm.com.

Thursday, December 20, 2018

Omnivore Recordings Highlights The Work Of Unicorn and Tom Brumley with The Buckaroos

Omnivore Recordings is revisiting the past once again with a couple of new releases that may not have seen the light of day without their help. First up is new compilation from the seventies British rock band, Unicorn. The band released a trio of albums in the mid-seventies, with non-other than Pink Floyd's David Gilmour in the producers chair. Unicorn even found opening slots on tours with Fleetwood Mac, Billy Joel and Linda Ronstadt just to name a few, but unfortunately that's where the magic ended.

Back on December 14th, Omnivore Recordings released a new compilation from Unicorn titled "Laughing Up Your Sleeve." It features twenty previously unissued demos made by the band between 1973-1974. As you listen to these tracks, you can hear the band's influences as the music of "The Farmer" and "Take It Easy" draws from the same vein of music as The Band and The Byrds. This new set of songs was remixed and remastered for this release by Scott Anthony with help from original band member Pat Martin. The sound is so amazing, that you would never have known that these were demos tracks. As this new set winds to a close with the steady rocker "Holland" and the acoustic ballad "So Far Away," you may want to journey back into the Unicorn catalog and rediscover a band that may just have been in the wrong place at the wrong time for success. To find out more about the newly released "Laughing Up Your Sleeve," please visit omnivorerecordings.com.

Another new compilation from Omnivore Recordings, comes in the form of Tom Brumley and The Buckaroos. Tom Brumley was the amazing steel guitar player in Buck Owens' band, The Buckaroos and this new release titled "Steelin' The Show," highlights Brumley's guitar work on these seventeen tracks. The songs were taken from The Buckaroos catalog recordings between 1964-1969 and highlights Brumley's steel guitar work on some classic songs like "Steel Guitar Rag," "Free And Easy" and "Apple Jack." The set is a masterpiece of nostalgic instrumentals that should be required listening for fans of country music. This new release closes with "Together Again," which is the only song on this compilation to feature Buck Owens, as Brumley steals the spotlight once again with his solo. To find out more about this new release from Tom Brumley and The Buckaroos, please visit omnivorerecordings.com.

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

New Eclectic/Experimental Music From Yagull, Vasil Hadzimanov Band and Laktating Yak

The musical duo of Sasha Markovic and Kana Kamitsubo, better known as Yagull, recently released their new studio album titled "Yuna." It features ten tracks that allow you relax and explore your inner self. The album begins with the piano and guitar waltz of "Searching For The Moon," followed by the quiet touch of "Dawn." The duo perform an odd, but amazing cover of Black Sabbath's "Sabbath Bloody Sabbath," as you will simply be in awe of this instrumental reinterpretation of this heavy metal classic. Kana takes the lead on the emotional piano ballad "Muse," while "101" feels more light, airy and free to flow. Yagull finish up their new album with the relaxing melody of "Mori (Forest Song)" and the wonderful acoustics of "Kiri." To find out more about Yagull and their latest release "Yuna," please visit yagull.com.


Next we have the latest release from Serbian keyboardist/composer Vasil Hadzimanov titled "Lines In The Sand." It features a dozen tracks, beginning with the worldly feel of the title-song "Lines In Sand," as the song morphs into a electronic jazz fusion. The Vasil Hadzimanov Band get funky with the rhythm of "Mr. Moonjune," before Vasil's jazz piano skills take over on "Lost." The album then delivers the R&B flavor of "Maklik" and "For Clara," before finishing with great, swift jazz fusion of "Freedom From The Past" and the seven-minute progressive movement of "Rege Hadzi." To find out more about the Vasil Hadzimanov Band and their latest release "Lines In The Sand," please visit www.vhband.com.


From Houston, TX comes the debut album from the avant-garde/progressive rock band Laktating Yak. They released their debut album, "Origin Of The Yak" back on December 7th. It features seven-tracks that combines different musical styles together to see what sticks. The build-up of "Invokation Of The Yak, Pt. 1" continues to build, before a solo violin releases the pressure of the song's rhythm. The six-minutes of "The Errorist" is an exploration in sound, as you should be listening to this album through a set of headphones, in order to appreciate the creations of Laktating Yak. The rhythm of "Stampede Of Yak," is highly addictive, before the band close out their new album with the subtle touches of sound during part two of the "Invokation Of The Yak." To find out more about Laktating Yak and their latest release "Origin Of The Yak," please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/LaktatingYak.

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

New Box Sets Highlight Past Releases From Be-Bop Deluxe And MAN

Seventies English progressive rock band, Be-Bop Deluxe released five albums during their short six year career, but one of those albums is getting the deluxe treatment. Esoteric Recordings is reissuing the Be-Bop Deluxe album "Sunburst Finish" as a 3 CD/1 DVD set. It features a brand new remaster of the album from the original recording tapes, along with a whopping 39 bonus tracks.

The first disc features the original ten track album, with the addition of one bonus track, the single-version of "Ships In The Night." This album would be Be-Bop Deluxe's break through on the U.K. music charts with the perfectly crafted songs "Heavenly Homes," "Life In The Air Age" and of course "Ships In The Night." Disc two includes a brand new stereo mix of the album that is perfectly crafted for your headphones, as the music "Crying To The Sky" and "Crystal Gazing" swirl around your head. Also included on this disc are early versions of "Ships In The Night" and "Beauty Secrets" as well as alternate vocal takes.

The third disc features Be-Bop Deluxe live on the BBC as they perform songs from their "Sunburst Finish" album, as well as early tracks like "Sister Seagull" and "Third Floor Heaven." The DVD in this set, features a new 5.1 surround sound mix of the album, along with their appearance on the "Old Grey Whistle Test" show. To find out more about this new deluxe edition of Be-Bop Deluxe's "Sunburst Finish" album, please visit cherryred.co.uk.

U.K. psychedelic/progressive rock band, MAN, collected four of their most recent studio albums, along with the "official bootleg" of their 1976 show in Berkeley, CA. MAN existence has lasted five decades, with a number of different line-ups, but this new set titled "Evolution" showcases their work from the turn of the century, plus their comeback album "The Twang Dynasty."

This new 6 CD set was released back in November through Purple Pyramid Records (Cleopatra Records) and each album is represented in its own jacket that represents the original album artwork. This set also includes new liner notes from music historian Dave Thompson, but fans will definitely enjoy the live double album titled "Live At The Keystone." It feature the band in their seventies, progressive rock glory and Quicksilver Messenger Service guitarist John Cipollina sits in with the band on this raw, rocking show. To find out more about the new MAN box set, "Evolution," please visit cleorecs.com.

Monday, December 17, 2018

Remembering The Los Angeles Underground Music Scene With Two New Releases

Back in the early '80's, The Bangles, The Three O'Clock, The Dream Syndicate and Rain Parade formed the underground music scene in Los Angeles. Each band found some form of fame, with The Bangles becoming one of the biggest bands of the MTV generation, but they were all connected by that underground bond. Back in 2013, the four bands reunited for a one-off concert to benefit the non-profit "Education Through Music" organization. The show went so well, that plans were in the works for the four bands to team-up once again for an album. On Record Store Day, November 23rd, the collaboration titled "3x4" was released on vinyl and CD.

It features the four bands covering one another's songs, as each band appears on the album three times. The cohesiveness of the music on this new release is amazing, as you'd think it was one band performing all of these songs. Each band does an outstanding job re-interpreting the songs, by sticking close to the originals. The psychedelic feel of The Three O'Clock's "As Real As Real" is perfectly delivered by Rain Parade and the punk-like energy of The Bangles' "Hero Takes A Fall" is given an edgier sound, delivered by The Dream Syndicate. Each song in this set is careful crafted to show you the respect that each band has for one another. To find out more about the new "3x4" collaboration from The Bangles, The Three O'Clock, The Dream Syndicate and Rain Parade, please visit thebangles.com.

Also from the L.A. underground music scene comes the latest release from the punk/grunge band, The Flesh Eaters. Their new album titled "I Used To Be Pretty" will be released on January 18th, through Yep Roc Records. The band are no strangers to the underground L.A. rock scene as The Flesh Eaters began their career in the late-seventies as a staple on the club circuit. Their new album features a collection of eleven tracks, beginning with the slow burn of "Black Temptation," one of two new songs featured on this compilation. They showcase their more youthful side on the punk-like rocker "My Life To Live," before tackling the Fleetwood Mac bluesy classic "The Green Manalishi" with raw precision. The album continues with the seven-minute steady confession of "The Youngest Profession," before closing with "Ghost Cave Lament," which has been compared to The Doors' classic "The End." To find out more about The Flesh Eaters and their latest release "I Used To Be Pretty," please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/theFlesheaters.

Sunday, December 16, 2018

Fellow Artists And Writers Discuss The Music Of Queen "Album By Album"

Author Martin Popoff quickly follows up his successful publication, "Iron Maiden: Album By Album" with his latest work, "Queen: Album By Album." With the success of the movie "Bohemian Rhapsody," now is the perfect time for this book to arrive. It follows the same format as the Iron Maiden book, as Popoff begins each chapter with his own assessment of an album, and then works in a round table discussion with fellow music artists, journalists and music pros.

Twisted Sister's Dee Snider does double-duty, by discussing Queen's first two albums, as he showcases his respect and passion for the band's early days. Martin Popoff pulls off the amazing, by getting one of the biggest musical artists on the planet, Sir Paul McCartney to discuss one of Queen's best-selling albums, "A Night At The Opera." While McCartney never followed the band in the seventies, he does give his open opinion as to the production of the album, which feels like a small glimpse into how Queen was able to diverse their sound successfully.

Many of the special guests involved discuss multiple albums in this book, as singer Darius Rucker (Hootie And The Blowfish) spreads his love of one of Queen's miss-hits, "Hot Space." Rucker explains that by being a Queen fan, you were conditioned to expect surprises from this band. Jim Jenkins and Patrick Myers handle the difficult task of discussing Queen's final studio album "Made In Heaven" and what may have went into creating this album following Freddie Mercury's untimely death four years earlier.

This book will certainly shed new light on your views of Queen's classic catalog as you try and absorb all of the information and opinions that these experts give on the music of Queen. This new hardcover book also contains hundreds of photos and promotional items (some never published before) that will help you follow the path of musical royalty known only as Queen. To find out more about "Queen: Album By Album," please visit quartoknows.com.

Saturday, December 15, 2018

Merry Christmas! Here Are Some Last Minute Music Gift Ideas From JP's Music Blog!

With just over a week left until Christmas, here are some helpful hints for presents for the music fan in your life. If you're looking to "WOW!" them, they look no further than the amazing 50th anniversary box sets from The Beatles, The Rolling Stones and Jimi Hendrix. 1968 was an amazing year for music, The Beatles and The Rolling Stones stripped down their sound from their releases of the previous years, while Jimi Hendrix let all his experimentation flow through the studio.

The Beatles' "White Album" was recently remixed and re-released in a number of different formats, including a 6-CD/Blu-ray set that includes the magnificent "Esher Demos," as well as three full discs of outtakes from the "White Album" sessions. The Rolling Stones revisited their masterpiece, "Beggar's Banquet" by re-releasing the album on 180-gram vinyl with a bonus 12-inch version of the single "Sympathy For The Devil," as well as a flexi-disc of a rare Japanese interview with Mick Jagger. Jimi Hendrix released his final studio album "Electric Ladyland" in 1968, and to celebrate Sony Legacy/Experience Hendrix released a 3-CD/Blu-ray box set, which included rare recording sessions and a previously unreleased live show from the Hollywood Bowl.

Another great anniversary release includes the new 40th anniversary set of Rush's 1978 masterpiece "Hemispheres." The 2-CD or triple-vinyl set includes the 2015 remaster of the "Hemispheres" album (never before released on CD) as well as the previously unreleased live set from Rush at the Pinkpop Festival. New vinyl releases from Lenny Kravitz and Anthrax highlight the 30th anniversary of their albums, "Let Love Rule" and "State Of Euphoria," respectively. 

If you're looking for music a little more modern, then look no further than the newly released Chris Cornell box set. It features four discs worth of material that covers all of Cornell's bands (Soundgarden, Audioslave, Temple Of The Dog), as well as his amazing solo work. The real treasure of this set, is the live music that Cornell recorded acoustically, including covers of songs from Michael Jackson, Prince and Metallica. Another great gift is the new live album from classic progressive rockers, King Crimson. Their new 3-CD/Blu-ray set titled "Meltdown," features the band live in Mexico, performing some of the best music of their nearly 50 years of existence.

More stand-outs that need to be under the tree this year include the latest volume of the ongoing Bob Dylan "Bootleg Series." Fans have been waiting patiently for this set from Bob Dylan titled "More Blood, More Tracks." It features all of the session recordings that Bob Dylan made in New York for his album "Blood On The Tracks." The mostly acoustic takes display Dylan at his most intimate, as you can follow along to the development of each song featured on that classic album. Another must-have is the new eight disc set featuring "R.E.M. At The BBC." It contains every visit R.E.M. made to the BBC throughout their 30 year career. It includes two full shows, as well as early unplugged ideas. Hopefully these ideas will help put a smile on your music fan's face come this December 25th.

Friday, December 14, 2018

Celebrate The Music Of YES and Chris Squire With These New Tribute Albums

As the band YES celebrate their 50th anniversary in 2019, we get the new release "Yesterday And Today," which is a tribute album to the band YES. It features 13 tracks from many artists that have been influenced by the band over the course of the last five decades. It starts out with the spot-on rendition of YES' 1980 release "Machine Messiah" by Nick D'Virgilio (Spock's Beard) and Geoff Downes (Yes, Asia), before moving on to the Tony Kaye-led keyboard infused cover of "Yours Is No Disgrace." The beautiful ballad "Turn Of The Century" is the perfect setting for the sweet vocals of Sally Minnear, while fellow progressive rock band, Curved Air deliver a gentle rendition of "Soon." Guitarist Steve Hackett (Genesis) leads the charge of YES' eighties output with a strong cover of "Cinema," before fellow guitarist Robert Berry takes over on "Changes." The album finishes with modern singer Leslie Hunt pouring her all into the swinging classic "Long Distance Runaround" and then British artist, Francis Dunnery works his way through the 8-minute closer "Starship Trooper." To find out more about the new YES tribute album "Yesterday And Today," please visit cherryred.co.uk.


Released back in November was a brand new tribute to the late, great Chris Squire. This new release titled "A Life In YES: The Chris Squire Tribute" centers only around his time as member of the band, YES, as the prog-rock community come together to pay tribute to one of the band's original, longtime member. The new 12-song set kicks off with Jon Davison & Patrick Moraz teaming up for a stellar cover of Yes's 1978 classic "On The Silent Wings Of Freedom." Singer Annie Haslam (Renaissance) adds another dimension to the ballad "Onward" with her sweet voice. Guitarist Steve Stevens and keyboardist David Sancious team up for the nearly nine-minute epic "South Side Of The Sky," before Dweezil Zappa and Nikki Squire (wife of Chris Squire) take on YES' break-through single "Owner Of A Lonely Heart." The set closes with a passionate reinterpretation of the famous "Roundabout" by Todd Rundgren, John Wesley and Tony Kaye, but not before we get one of the last tribute of Chris Squire performing the Pink Floyd classic "Comfortable Numb." To find out more about "A Life In YES: A Chris Squire Tribute," please visit cleorecs.com.

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Close Out The Year With New Heavy Metal Releases From Marius Danielsen, Lividity and Fall

One of the last batches of heavy metal releases this year, features new work from Marius Daielsen, Lividity and Fall. On November 30th, fans finally received part two of Marius Danielsen's "Legend Of Valley Doom" saga. It features a dozen tracks that continues the power metal artist's epic musical piece, which began only a few years ago with part one. The new set start off with the "Lord Of The Rings" inspired praise of "King Thorgan's Hymn," before Marius Danielsen delivers the heavy metal attack of "Rise Of The Dark Empire." The sweeping ballad of "Tower Of Knowledge" and the Dio-inspired "Crystal Mountains" showcases the complexity of Danielsen's songwriting as he places you in the middle of these adventurous stories. The energy picks up once again for the swift-pace of "Angel Of Light," before finishing with the eight-minute progressive metal piece "Temple Of The Ancient God," and the grand closure of "We Stand Together." To find out more about Marius Danielsen and his latest release "Legend Of Valley Doom, Part 2," please visit mariusdanielsen.com.

Next we have the hardcore metal assault of Lividity with their new release titled "Perseverance." It feature a dozen tracks of aggressive, grind-core metal music that is not for the weak. Songs like "Meat For The Beast" and "Violated In The Vatican" have a spoken word beginning, before the band takes over with the huge guitar riffs and growling vocals that will surely get you adrenaline pumping. Lividity keeps the music going full blast with "Somethings Dead" and "Tampered Flesh," as you will find yourself exhausted just listing to the new album. To find out more about Lividity and their latest release "Perseverance," please visit the band's Facebook page at facebook.com/lividityofficial.

Then, on December 21st, we get the self-released debut album from Texas metal-outfit, Fall. Their new four-song release titled "The Dreamer Of Tragedy" showcases the melodic depths that this band have put into their music. The album starts off with the addictive chorus and passionate vocals of "Ascend" and then quickly follows with the intricate progressive delivery of "Defender." Fall close out their new album with the nearly nine-minute epic "Longing Spirits" and the intensity rises and fall throughout this amazing piece of the music. To find out more about Fall and their latest release "The Dreamer Of Tragedy," please visit the band's Facebook page at facebook.com/fall.music.

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

New Music From Spin Doctors Guitarist Eric Schenkman and Hall & Oates Bandmember Eliot Lewis

Spin Doctors' guitarist Eric Schenkman will be releasing his new self-produced solo album "Who Shot John?" on January 11th, through Vizztone Label Group. It features ten tracks that allows Schenkman to flex his musical muscle. The album kicks off with the bluesy, boogie-shuffle of "I'm Alright" and the grittier rocker "Locked In The House." When working in the Spin Doctors, Eric's voice is used for the background, but on this new release, you begin to discover how strong and powerful is vocals are on the songs "Who Shot John" and "No Pain." Next he digs deep into the slow blues of "Sign Of The Times," before wrapping his new album with the up-tempo swing of "Far Away" and the dirty, grungy guitar buzz of "Agent Orange." To find out more about Eric Schenkman and his latest release "Who Shot John?," please visit his Facebook page at facebook.com/EricSchenkmanMusic.



Current Darryl Hall and John Oates band member, Eliot Lewis recently released his debut solo album titled "Adventure." Lewis was also a key member of the Scottish soul band, The Average White Band. Eliot's new eleven track release kicks off with the steady rocker, "We're In It Together," which easily carries that Hall & Oates soulful vibe, while "Flying" deals in an R&B vibe that showcases the great lead vocals of Lewis. The album continues with the uptempo, country rock vibe of "Tattoo" and the wonderful acoustic ballad "Smile," which showcases how strong his songwriting is. Eliot Lewis wraps up his new album with the addictive guitar riffs of "Crusade" and a toned-down, acoustic-based version of Bad Company's "Ready For Love." To find out more about Eliot Lewis and his latest releases "Adventure," please visit eliotlewis.com.

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Dennis Quaid Jumps "Out Of The Box", The Delines Become "Imperial" and Lone Justice Revisits "The Western Tapes"

Movie-star Dennis Quaid is switching gears, from acting to music. Quaid and his band, The Sharks, recently released their debut album, "Out Of The Box" on November 30th through Omnivore Recordings. This album has been 30 years in the making, as Quaid had the itch to create music back in the '80's when he produced music for some of his early films. Dennis Quaid & The Sharks have history that dates back 18 years, performing around the L.A. club scene, but this is their first studio release.

It kicks off with the honky-tonk rock of "I'm In Love," as Quaid pays tribute to his early musical influences with this classic sounding country gem. They keep the energy flowing with the guitar-driven explosion of "Peaches No. 9" and "Out Of The Box." Dennis Quaid & The Sharks breath new life into their covers of well-known classics like The Doors' "L.A. Woman," "Riders On The Storm" and Larry Williams' "Slow Down," along with Van Morrison's "Gloria." They wrap up their new album with the autobiographical tale of "After The Fall." To find out more about Dennis Quaid & The Sharks and their new album "Out Of The Box," please visit the band's Facebook page at facebook.com/dennisquaidandthesharks.


Arriving January 11th, is the latest release from the Americana/country band, The Delines. Their new album titled "The Imperial," ends a three-year hiatus due to a car accident that was suffered by the band's lead singer, Amy Boone. Their new ten song release begins with the emotional ballads "Cheer Up Charley" and the title track, "The Imperial," as the melodies allow you to focus on Amy's vocals. The album continues with the slow waltz of "Let's Be Us Again" and the classic/nostalgic country sway of "Eddie & Polly." The songs on this new release play soft and quiet as the music just wraps you up like a comfortable blanket. The Delines closes out their new album with the blues of "He Don't Burn For Me" and the gentle touch of "Waiting On The Blue." To find out more about The Delines and their latest release "The Imperial," please visit thedelines.com.


Classic '80's country band, Lone Justice recently released their early demo collection "The Western Tapes, 1983" on November 23rd on vinyl and CD, just in time for Record Store Day. The new six-song release shows, that even before the release of the first album, that Lone Justice was special. Their classic country sound on "Don't Toss Us Away" pays homage to early days of honky-tonk country music. Their youthful energy comes quickly swinging by with "I See It" and "The Train," as these early songs showed potential, which lead to an all too short four year career. To find out more about Lone Justice's "The Western Tapes, 1983" release, please visit omnivorerecordings.com.