Names like Muse, ELO, Pink Floyd and Peter Gabriel are listed as similar acts, and the listener can hear plenty of progressive and orchestrated elements running through these 17 tracks
An album with truly punkish rock songs, and even features a picture of a police officer dressed in riot gear on its cover.
Marty Thompsons music oftentimes gets compared to jam band acts, like Phish and (the original jam band) Grateful Dead. However, you may not fully grasp this influence until this release gets to track three
Paul Lewis points to David Bowie and Prince as primary musical influences, and one immediately hears traces of Bowies sometimes operatic vocalisms during the highly charged singing during these eight-tracks
Erik Mut his Break Free project a collection of folk punk. if Black Flag might be a little too harsh for your tastes, Mut has given his punkish musings into a much easier to digest dish.
Although What Strange Beasts sing about deep stuff, you know, philosophy, science and the human condition, these heavy topics oftentimes boil down to relatable, everyday ideas.
Spoiler NYC - Banned in 38 States
Spoiler NYC is led by Alan Robert, who is also the co-founder of Life of Agony, and its fast and noisy album (Banned in 38 States) is one wonderful burst of aggressive punk rock
Read the full Spoiler NYC - Banned in 38 States review
Eric Anders and Mark O'Bitz - The Loss We've Won
Eric Anders, the lyricist who composes these songs with Mark OBitz, describes the pairs new album in semi-mathematical terms
Read the full Eric Anders and Mark O'Bitz - The Loss We've Won review
Patrick Ames - Harmonium
All I Do Is Bleed is a hardcore name for an album. Patrick Ames supports its title with six serious, but oftentimes short songs.
Read the full Patrick Ames - Harmonium review
Whitbeck - January 22
The band Whitbeck is led by its producer and lead vocalist, Greg Whitbeck. January 22 is its debut album, and its a finely crafted collection of edgy rock & roll.
Read the full Whitbeck - January 22 review
Cos - Grace
Cos is a New York City-based multi-instrumentalist and producer, and his album Grace is labeled as progressive rock.
Read the full Cos - Grace review
A.N.J.A. - A-Bomb
A.N.J.A. is described as a one woman post punk horror surf rock experiment from Belfast.
Read the full A.N.J.A. - A-Bomb review
Various Artists - The Big Cover-Up
Can you even imagine a various artist album filled with cover songs that features Billy Idol, Starship and Butthole Surfers songs? I couldnt either. However, wait no longer
Read the full Various Artists - The Big Cover-Up review
Heavenly Trip to Hell - Pumpkin Man
Heavenly Trip to Hell music is decidedly on the darker hell side of the heaven/hell divide. Its heavy stuff, but certainly a memorable ride.
Read the full Heavenly Trip to Hell - Pumpkin Man review
Sickpay - Pureocracy
Sickpay is a Brooklyn-based composer, producer and drummer/guitarist, and Pureocracy is his five-song EP.
Read the full Sickpay - Pureocracy review
Mental Fracture - Disaccord
Mental Fracture is an Israeli prog rock band, and its album Disaccord album is a sonically amazing song collection
Read the full Mental Fracture - Disaccord review
Lochness Monster - Working for a Future
Loch Ness Monster, that mythical (some say) sea creature, is said to be from Scotland. However, this Lochness Monster, the band, is from Miami, Florida
Read the full Lochness Monster - Working for a Future review
Spencer Elliott - SE3
Its rare to find instrumental albums with so many pieces that sound so much like actual songs (albeit, without lyrics and vocals). SE3 is just such a rare bird
Read the full Spencer Elliott - SE3 review
Leadbetter Band - Howl
While mostly exploring the gentler side of the blues, Howl is a fine example of the blues put into a contemporary context.
Read the full Leadbetter Band - Howl review
Aura Blaze - Open-Mindedness
Although Aura Blazes music is labeled psychedelic rock/Dream Pop, its three-song Open-Mindedness EP draws heavily on 80s pop music
Read the full Aura Blaze - Open-Mindedness review
The Color of Cyan - Agape
If you enjoy creative electric guitar sounds, The Color of Cyans Agape album is nearly guaranteed to bring you much pleasure.
Read the full The Color of Cyan - Agape review
The Ghosts of Searchlight - Sprawl
The Ghosts of Searchlight is headed up by guitarist Brian Horn (along with collaborators), and Sprawl is a unique album, to say the least.
Read the full The Ghosts of Searchlight - Sprawl review
1st Base Runner - Ellis
1st Base Runner is the moniker for an Austin, TX-based singer/songwriter. These tracks are dead serious and more than a little Gothic
Read the full 1st Base Runner - Ellis review
Bay area Modern Monsters open the acts three-song EP with Furrow. Its a furious piece of music, which ends with the sound of evil laughter.
Read the full Modern Monsters review
Kris Heaton - My City of Gold
Kris Heaton says his My City of Gold album expresses his belief that there is something beautiful awaiting us beyond our earthly existence.
Read the full Kris Heaton - My City of Gold review
Youve got to love the press material for UK-based Flavour Nurse. Described in part as, transcending terrestrial airwaves through a wormhole near you.
Read the full Flavour Nurse review
Squanky Kong- Dawn of the Cataclysm
Dawn of the Cataclysm is sure a downer of an album title. However, the music contained within is nevertheless filled with a spunky, fighting spirit
Read the full Squanky Kong- Dawn of the Cataclysm review
Vannon - Desert of Our Dreams
Theres a moment during The First and Last, the third track on Vannons Desert of Our Dreams, where the music takes on a loose, (dare we say it?) jazzy feel
Read the full Vannon - Desert of Our Dreams review
Celebrity Warship Culture - Recreational Everything
Celebrity Warship Culture describes its musical style as noise-positive, comparing itself to acts like Sonic Youth and Nirvana
Read the full Celebrity Warship Culture - Recreational Everything review
Sundogs - Move
If you like your rock music smart and stylish, Sundogs should be your very next Move.
Read the full Sundogs - Move review
Drowning Effect - Techniculture
Drowning Effect has been described as Blue Cheer and The Stooges met Janes Addiction and Filter. If that doesnt get your heart beating faster, you may not be a big a rock music fan as you think you are.
Read the full Drowning Effect - Techniculture review
Zack Oakley - Badlands
Zack Oakley is described as a purveyor of heavy psychedelic rock, and thats exactly what the listener gets with Badlands.
Read the full Zack Oakley - Badlands review
Brainsqueezed - I Am Not a Robot
Whenever an album has a descriptive title, such as this one - I Am Not a Robot - it follows that the listener is intrigued as to just how much the songs support the title.
Read the full Brainsqueezed - I Am Not a Robot review
Blake Red - The Cradle
Blake Red is one female hard rocker to be reckoned with that sings with a strong female voice, from the beginning to the end of this project.
Read the full Blake Red - The Cradle review
The Furious Seasons - Home All Day, Home All Night
Steinhart has one of those pained, sincere singing voices that makes everything sound attention worthy.
Read the full The Furious Seasons - Home All Day, Home All Night review
Asian Anthology - Rock of Asia
From the albums name to the groups moniker, Rock of Asias Asian Anthology is an example of undeniable truth in advertising.
Read the full Asian Anthology - Rock of Asia review
Heele - Still Intact
Lyrically, its the sound of Henss attempting - as best he can - to come to grips with the flood of emotions that nostalgic experience brought to the surface
Read the full Heele - Still Intact review
High Chair - Hey Mountain Hey
Hey Mountain Hey is both complicated (in a progressive rock sense) and sonically beautiful, for a winning combination.
Read the full High Chair - Hey Mountain Hey review
The Windsong Spires - Echo Us
Theres plenty going on within Ethan Matthews musical world, which makes The Windsong Spires a truly enchanting album.
Read the full The Windsong Spires - Echo Us review
Metamorphosis - Black Reuss
Dont let such assumptions stop you, give Metamorphosis a listen because its so much more melodic and musical than you might expect.
Read the full Metamorphosis - Black Reuss review
Blue and Broke - Night Shadows
This group is smart and eclectic and has created an album that features aural surprises at nearly every turn.
Read the full Blue and Broke - Night Shadows review
Barista - Open Sesame Vol 2: Press Rewind
Much of this music references the glory days of Southern California soft-rock, and at the end of the day, theres nothing at all wrong with that.
Read the full Barista - Open Sesame Vol 2: Press Rewind review
Gary Craig - Yesterday Into Day
Gary Craig is described as a rock/folk/prog musician, which is an odd stylistic combination, to say the least. Folk and prog music are nearly diametrically opposed to one another.
Read the full Gary Craig - Yesterday Into Day review
Waves of Distortion - Race Against Time
As a sonic statement, Waves Of Distortion proves it can do many musical things quite well.
Read the full Waves of Distortion - Race Against Time review
The Chris Ruben Band - Madness on Repeat
The album addresses contemporary society with an album of tasty, funk-spiced rock music.
Read the full The Chris Ruben Band - Madness on Repeat review
Blueanimal - On My Mind
With the pandemic dragging on for over a year now, it might be redundant to call any new artistic project appropriate for the times. However, Blueanimals On My Mind absolutely fits that description.
Read the full Blueanimal - On My Mind review
Elford, Davies and Baldini - The Real Story
Our unusual modern times bring conjure up a wide range of emotions, and Elford, Davies and Baldini bring out many of these feelings beautifully with The Real Story.
Read the full Elford, Davies and Baldini - The Real Story review
Eric Anders and Mark O'Bitz - Sirens Go By
Sirens Go By is the second installment in a four-part Anders/OBitz collection referred to as music in the time of coronavirus.
Read the full Eric Anders and Mark O'Bitz - Sirens Go By review
boWsER - Whispers From the Wicker Man
When you take hard rock, and mix in a touch of funk, you oftentimes come up with something truly special. Such is the case with boWsER
Read the full boWsER - Whispers From the Wicker Man review
Apache Rose - Attention!
Apache Rose, a 90s rock loving, Moscow-based band, certainly has our rapt attention with its appropriately titled Attention! album
Read the full Apache Rose - Attention! review
Dizmation - Sea Area Forecast
Dizmation is the name given to a producer, songwriter, and visual artist from Dublin Ireland. Theres just so much going on during Sea Area Forecast, and all of it rewardingly worthwhile
Read the full Dizmation - Sea Area Forecast review
Nonviolenze - Ghosts of War
Sometimes, this music sounds like an opera company has crashed a Pink Floyd concert. The singing is relatively formal, whereas the guitar-centered music mostly sounds like progressive rock.
Read the full Nonviolenze - Ghosts of War review
Countless Thousands - And the Triumph of Justice
The group counts Against Me! as a musical influence, and the acts singer is sometimes a dead ringer for Laura Jane Grace of Against Me!
Read the full Countless Thousands - And the Triumph of Justice review
Paul Maged- Culture War
In an actual culture war, nearly everybody loses. However, the quality music contained on Paul Mageds Culture War album is a conspicuously clear winner.
Read the full Paul Maged- Culture War review
Sonic Fuel - Karma
This hard rocking band, inspired by acts like Foo Fighters and Rival Sons, has given us an angry, guitar-driven rant
Read the full Sonic Fuel - Karma review
3000AD - The Void
Compared to acts like Slayer and Sepultura, The Void is described as an album that takes the listener on a journey through a bleak dystopian future.
Read the full 3000AD - The Void review
The smallest Creature - Magic Beans
The smallest Creatures album title, Magic Beans, may make you think back to that childhood story, Jack and the Beanstalk.
Read the full The smallest Creature - Magic Beans review
Sonic Fuel - I Will Rise
Sonic Fuel is an apt name for a rock band. Yes, its sonic because its sound. However, whenever its done the right way, it burns - like fuel.
Read the full Sonic Fuel - I Will Rise review
RSC - Shadow Lady
You must love how RSC describes its music as unapologetically old school rock/metal. If you love the old school stuff , there is never any need to apologize.
Read the full RSC - Shadow Lady review
Sundogs - The Code
If Sundogs The Code makes you dust off old Steely Dan albums, thats probably a good thing. This Seattle rock groups fantastic album includes many sonic reminders of that stellar 70s duo.
Read the full Sundogs - The Code review
Jackson Price - I Used To Have Fun
I Used to Have Fun is either an ironic title or a misnomer because Price sure sounds like hes having a really good time making this music.
Read the full Jackson Price - I Used To Have Fun review
Ptolema - Maze
It is impossible to overestimate how refreshing it is to hear a powerful female rock vocalist
Read the full Ptolema - Maze review
Apache Rose - Tiny Love
No matter what its all about, Tiny Love is a blast of roots-y rock & roll, with its artistic heart in exactly the right place.
Read the full Apache Rose - Tiny Love review
Brainsqueezed - Scarred
Stylistically, Brainsqueezed categorizes itself someplace between A Perfect Circle and Guns N Roses, which is a fairly wide sonic spectrum
Read the full Brainsqueezed - Scarred review
Robertas Semeniukas - Backstage Stories
Robertas Semeniukas Backstage Stories reveals how music (and rock & roll in particular) has become an international language
Read the full Robertas Semeniukas - Backstage Stories review
Rainer Landfermann - Mein Wort in Deiner Dunkelheit
Rainer Landfermann has been featured in Decibel Magazines Top 30 Greatest Extreme Vocalists of all time, and this album undeniably makes the case that he deserves to be
Read the full Rainer Landfermann - Mein Wort in Deiner Dunkelheit review
Just Like Honey - The Wood Room Sessions
Just Like Honey songs have always been built around the honeyed vocals of Darlene Jonasson and Bianca Yang, but this duo has never sounded sweeter than on The Wood Room Sessions.
Read the full Just Like Honey - The Wood Room Sessions review
Canyon Worship - Canyon Worship 2019
Technically, you could call Canyon Worships Canyon Worship 2019 a student project, as the students of Grand Canyon University have been releasing albums of original material since 2016.
Read the full Canyon Worship - Canyon Worship 2019 review
Lightning Hunter - Beyond Beyond
Beyond Beyond by Lightning Hunter, the side project from Charles Scandura (of the New York band Negativehate), is an eclectic collection of progressive rock songs
Read the full Lightning Hunter - Beyond Beyond review
Death Party Playground - Little Joy
Death Party Playground is a name that doesnt always fit the acts music because much of this music is, contrastingly, the life of the party.
Read the full Death Party Playground - Little Joy review
The Soft Underground - Anemoia
Theres much to love about The Soft Undergrounds proclivity to endlessly explore wide-ranging sounds on Anemoia. Its inventive and original, yet also warm and inviting
Read the full The Soft Underground - Anemoia review
Marty Thompson - My Kind Of Woman
This project makes clear how Marty Thompson learned his lessons well while listening to all that classic rock as a child
Read the full Marty Thompson - My Kind Of Woman review
Chapell - Penultimate
Alan Chapell reveals himself to be one perceptive lyricist with his full-length album Penultimate
Read the full Chapell - Penultimate review
Lord Sonny the Unifier - FINAL NOTICE
The world is messy right now, which makes a relatively messy collection of music like this one, perfectly appropriate
Read the full Lord Sonny the Unifier - FINAL NOTICE review
Psychic Lines - Dance, Cartoon Skeleton
Psychic Lines is a project Phil Jacob helms, and his/its music has been described as a cross between Leonard Cohen and Warren Zevon.
Read the full Psychic Lines - Dance, Cartoon Skeleton review
Historian - Spiral Again
Historian, Chris Karmans musical moniker, has been described as the lovechild of Leonard Cohen and Brian Eno
Read the full Historian - Spiral Again review
StrangeJuice - Raising Cannibals
The group is from Perth, Western Australia, which is not all that far from Nick Cave country.
Read the full StrangeJuice - Raising Cannibals review
Dig Two Graves - Deathwish
Dig Two Graves is a progressive metalcore band, and Deathwish is a loud, funerial six-song collection.
Read the full Dig Two Graves - Deathwish review
American High - U.N. Article 14
American High is an unusual Sacramento act. It sounds like a 60s music revival band.
Read the full American High - U.N. Article 14 review
Outerfield - Pleasant Grove Hotel
The duo of guitarist/bassist Gary Schrader and songwriter Matt Hutson, known as Outerfield, come with high credentials
Read the full Outerfield - Pleasant Grove Hotel review
Jared Weiss - Isolated Thunderstorms
Jared Weiss is a busy actor, as well as a singer/songwriter who fills his songs with passion and intelligence, which makes Isolated Thunderstorms an inviting weather forecast.
Read the full Jared Weiss - Isolated Thunderstorms review
Matt Epp - Shadowlands
Its a dark, murky world we travel these days. Matt Epp knows this and has created appropriate music for the journey.
Read the full Matt Epp - Shadowlands review
My Autumn Amor - Letters to Brie
My Autumn Amor is the moniker for singer/songwriter Thomas Monroe, and Letters to Brie is a wonderful - albeit brief - five song collection.
Read the full My Autumn Amor - Letters to Brie review
Ben DeLaurentis - Liar for a Muse
Ben DeLaurentis, after tracking three albums with a band, has taken the solo plunge with Liar for a Muse.
Read the full Ben DeLaurentis - Liar for a Muse review
Eric Anders & Mark O'Bitz - Of All These Things
Lyrically, these songs are thoughtful and deep, as you might expect from a psychoanalyst. However, its as sonically beautiful as it is lyrically intelligent,
Read the full Eric Anders & Mark O'Bitz - Of All These Things review
Novagolde - Self-Titled
Novagolde creates progressive rock, which includes rocking guitars, spacey keyboards and vocals that hide a little bit toward the back of the mix.
Read the full Novagolde - Self-Titled review
Maxwell James - Self-Titled
Maxwell James recorded this EP at Farmland Studios, a house converted into a studio. Let it be known, Nashvilles got soul, and Maxwell James is living proof.
Read the full Maxwell James - Self-Titled review
Amaris - Aquamarine
Amaris Wenceslas, who goes by the singular name of Amaris, is a multihyphenated Dutch-Swiss-New Guinean singer songwriter
Read the full Amaris - Aquamarine review
Alien Country - Like My Life Depends on It
Those that love acts like The Fall and Captain Beefheart will discover a kindred spirit with Alien Country.
Read the full Alien Country - Like My Life Depends on It review
Sebastian O - In Your Room
Listening to Sebastian O, the first thought that comes to mind is, Hey, is this new Conor Oberst music? Os singing is so Oberst-like, its truly uncanny
Read the full Sebastian O - In Your Room review
Ruiners - Typecast
Ruiners create a wonderful bunch of post-punk musical noise with their project Typecast.
Read the full Ruiners - Typecast review
Cordova - Runaway Summer
Oliver Charitys vocals prove right from the get-go, with the track Hiding, that this man has listened to his share of Seattle grunge.
Read the full Cordova - Runaway Summer review
Ajay Mather - Little Boat
Theres a sophistication to Ajay Mathers music that raises it above typical expectations for Americana sounds.
Read the full Ajay Mather - Little Boat review
American Amnesia - Yet Here We Are
Patrick Nemaizers vocal on the opening song to Yet Here We Are is a little schizophrenic
Read the full American Amnesia - Yet Here We Are review
Halfwait - The Official
The Official is an enjoyable album, from start to finish. Call it pop-punk or melodic rock. Whatever you call it, though, you cant call it anything but fine.
Read the full Halfwait - The Official review
Eric Frisch - Head Up in the Clouds
Eric Frischs Head Up in the Clouds is a collection of three pure pop songs. These songs are so personal, they might make you squirm. Maybe thats the point.
Read the full Eric Frisch - Head Up in the Clouds review
Crooked Flower - Darkness and Light
Crooked Flower is one of those acts that can do so many styles, so well, and Darkness and Light is a small taste of these skills.
Read the full Crooked Flower - Darkness and Light review
Metaspion - Folktronika Schmolkfonika
Metaspion is the brainchild of Morten Ricter, and Folktronika Schmolkfonika is a melting pot of all kinds of different musical styles.
Read the full Metaspion - Folktronika Schmolkfonika review
Aya Maguire - The Sandcastle King
Guaranteed, Aya Maguires The Sandcastle King is like nothing youll hear all day today. Maguire sings these eleven songs in a pure, gentile folk voice
Read the full Aya Maguire - The Sandcastle King review
Suki Rae and Company - Can't Stop Now
There are many moments during Suki Rae and Companys Cant Stop Now where the name Mavis Staples comes to mind.
Read the full Suki Rae and Company - Can't Stop Now review
Jonathan Davis - Black Labyrinth
While there are some new wrinkles in the cloth Jonathan has created with Black Labyrinth, the album is mostly more of the same kinds of songs weve come to expect from this Korn frontman
Read the full Jonathan Davis - Black Labyrinth review
Marty Thompson - Romantic Stories
This musician, raised in West Texas, was also a long way from home when he created these works. Romantic Stories is a strong rock album
Read the full Marty Thompson - Romantic Stories review
Agency - Exponents
Our current music world allows new artists are likely exposed to a lot of different sounds . This has resulted in indescribably cool music -- like Agency.
Read the full Agency - Exponents review
Kicklighter - Paper Planes, Vol. 1
There is much to love about Kicklighter, which is the name Everett Young has given his project.
Read the full Kicklighter - Paper Planes, Vol. 1 review
Good Field - Surface Tension
Good Field comes with great credentials, as Jim Eno (of Spoon) and James Petralli (of White Denim) helped produce Surface Tension.
Read the full Good Field - Surface Tension review
James Labrosse - Orange Night
James Labrosse may be a talented flamenco and jazz guitarist, but he surrounds himself with widely varying sounds on his album Orange Night.
Read the full James Labrosse - Orange Night review
In the Light of Led Zeppelin - Pompeii Sessions
With Pompeii Sessions, In the Light of Led Zeppelin gives us an evolved Led Zeppelin, if you will.
Read the full In the Light of Led Zeppelin - Pompeii Sessions review
N.ave - Black Magic
In its best places, N.ave gives a valiant effort of separating himself from the pack with Black Magic.
Read the full N.ave - Black Magic review
Iuliano - Hidden Roots
Everybodys musical journey is different, but few are as varied as Iulianos. Hes Italian but has worked a lot in the music business in Thailand, of all places.
Read the full Iuliano - Hidden Roots review
Pale Blue Dot - Anatomy
Grunge, or at least grunge-inspired music, will never die. At least if Pale Blue Dot has anything to do with it.
Read the full Pale Blue Dot - Anatomy review
David Williams - Tipping My Hat To Leonard
With the many smart songs contained on Tipping My Hat to Leonard, we should also be tipping our hats to David Williams.
Read the full David Williams - Tipping My Hat To Leonard review
Strange Culprits lead singer Jason Buckingham sounds a little like Pearl Jams Eddie Vedder, only Buckingham isnt nearly as smooth as the Seattle grunge legend. This Bay Area trio also plays loud, folk-ish rock, not grunge.
Read the full Strange Culprits review
Ghostly Beard - Inward
Ghostly Beard from Montreal, QC, is an eclectic act that touches upon pop and rock, all with a jazzy touch. Patrick Talbot is the driving force behind the slightly spooky moniker, providing all the instrumentation and singing.
Read the full Ghostly Beard - Inward review
Andy Michaels - Revisited
Australian Andy Michaels has one of those slightly scratchy voices that makes his singing stand out. This trait is not as overt as, say, Bryan Adams and Rod Stewart, but its nevertheless noticeable.
Read the full Andy Michaels - Revisited review
Armonite - The March of the Stars
Listening to The March of the Stars by Armonite may make you recall a memorable George Costanza quote from Seinfeld, in which he decries those hip musicians with their complicated shoes!
Read the full Armonite - The March of the Stars review
James Adkins - Brokedown Free Man Blues
James Adkins is a roots rocker, with country and bluegrass coloring much of Brokedown Free Man Blues. Although the road of life is indeed hard, James Adkins never sounds like a beaten man.
Read the full James Adkins - Brokedown Free Man Blues review
Psychocide - Alcohol & Bad Decisions
One of this hard-rocking bands inspirations is Guns N Roses, and Guns N Roses success story can also be traced back to an era when many music fans began to express nostalgia for rock musics rowdier days
Read the full Psychocide - Alcohol & Bad Decisions review
Arthur Fowler - Here I Am Again
This music can best be described as jazz-influenced, as opposed to strictly jazz. It can also be described as extremely good. Fowler is a guitarist with a wide range of tools.
Read the full Arthur Fowler - Here I Am Again review
Luca Bash - Keys of Mine
Keys of Mine is an album of pop songs. Some rock a bit, like Paradise Café, while others follow more of a jazzy groove. Bash has obviously been inspired by a few modern-day jam bands
Read the full Luca Bash - Keys of Mine review
Coral the Merknight vs. SEARANTULA - It Weaves a Web of Metal
Coral the Merknight vs SEARANTULA is described as a one-man parody metal act, and its album It Weaves a Web of Metal features musical heavyweights, like Travis Orbin of Darkest Hour and Adon Fanion of Ghost Ship Octavius.
Read the full Coral the Merknight vs. SEARANTULA - It Weaves a Web of Metal review
Noise Ratio - Songs on Fire
Based in West Virginia, Valput has been influenced by a lot of major downer acts, such as Depeche Mode and Pink Floyd. His songs are philosophical, as titles like Left Alone with My Beliefs and Seeking the Truth suggest.
Read the full Noise Ratio - Songs on Fire review
Paul Maged - Light Years Away
Although Paul Maged may claim both Green Day and Billy Joel as influences, except for the fact that each of these artists has a flair for the dramatic, they have little in common
Read the full Paul Maged - Light Years Away review
Ten Ton Man - Dangerous Women & A Desperate Man
These are the songs of an honest man, rather than somebody attempting to follow the pop music sweetness and light stereotype. The EP may not always come off pretty, but it always rings true.
Read the full Ten Ton Man - Dangerous Women & A Desperate Man review
Junkyardfieldtrip - Self-titled
Listening to the lovely acoustic elements supporting Lucky One, off Junkyardfieldtrips self-titled release, its a little difficult to believe its coming from a band out of Rochester, New York.
Read the full Junkyardfieldtrip - Self-titled review
Channel Dark - El Wire Pacifier
Channel Darks Jonathan Maxwell is said to have developed an interest in electronic music while battling insomnia. But what may have kept Maxwell up at night, is conversely a blessing to music listeners
Read the full Channel Dark - El Wire Pacifier review
Shawna Virago - Last Night's Sugar
Listening to Shawna Virago can be a lot like hearing Against Me! for the first time after Laura Jane Grace fully embraced her femininity. She looks like a girl, but she still sings like a man
Read the full Shawna Virago - Last Night's Sugar review
Here's the Riot - Tonight We're Alive EP
Heres the Riot, with Paris Tompkins angry, and sometimes scratchy vocals, is a sonic reminder of the influence Linkin Park and its late singer Chester Beninngton have had on rock music
Read the full Here's the Riot - Tonight We're Alive EP review
Staring Into Nothing - Power
Listening to Steve Rogers sing the songs that comprise Power, immediately brings Roger Waters to mind. Much like that former Pink Floyd front man, Rogerss music is a terminal downer.
Read the full Staring Into Nothing - Power review
Revolushn - Further!!
Revolushn music is the glorious sound of talented and experienced musicians creating (mostly) garage rock. What began as a duo comprised of No (guitar) and Dekay (drums) has evolved into a full-blown band
Read the full Revolushn - Further!! review
Blind Lemon Pledge - Backwards Glance
Blind Lemon Pledge is a wonderful name for a musical act. Although it suggests a snarky artist with a smart sense of humor, the music Bay Area bluesman James Byfield creates is not the sort of jokey mix such a moniker might suggest
Read the full Blind Lemon Pledge - Backwards Glance review
Kris Heaton Band - World Gone Mad
Listening to World Gone Mad wont provide any new revelations about life. But in the right circumstances, when all the evils of our fake news world have become too much, these basic sounds have a way to sooth.
Read the full Kris Heaton Band - World Gone Mad review
Heather Kenney - Waltz
Its been said the best things come in small packages, and at just three tracks, Waltz is about as small as you can get. Nevertheless, its also likely ten of the best minutes of acoustic music youll hear in a long, long time.
Read the full Heather Kenney - Waltz review
Freddie Nelson - Shake The Cage
A recent Forbes article told us rock no longer the most popular genre. Its the first time this has happened since Nielsen Music began measuring stylistic popularity back in 1991
Read the full Freddie Nelson - Shake The Cage review
Jordan Okrend - Dance by the Riverside
During the chorus for the title track to Jordan Okrends album, Dance by the Riverside, he exclaims, I just want to dance by the riverside. Its a sincere cry for escapism.
Read the full Jordan Okrend - Dance by the Riverside review
Nescora - Some Place Some Where
Its difficult to precisely pinpoint Nescoras style. One moment he sounds like a man raised on Sam Cooke music, the next it appears hes been delightfully indoctrinated in the Sun Records catalog.
Read the full Nescora - Some Place Some Where review
Builder of the House - Ornaments
Although it would be a stretch to call this act builders of a funhouse, there is nevertheless more fun to be found within these grooves than one might at first assume. And this is a very good thing.
Read the full Builder of the House - Ornaments review
Onionface - Roll Over, Dog... And Run!
This trio loves its blues, but it also digs the raunchy and the raw and this is an album that brings back glorious rock & roll noise, similar to the way the grunge era gave glam metal a swift kick
Read the full Onionface - Roll Over, Dog... And Run! review
American High - Bones in the Attic, Flowers in the Basement
American Highs music hearkens back to the 60s music heyday, as well as a touch of early 70s sounds. These songs all sound like they were influenced by recordings that came along well before punk rock broke.
Read the full American High - Bones in the Attic, Flowers in the Basement review
Jay Regan - Wash Me
While Regan isnt overboard successful with his various sonic approaches on Wash Me, you nevertheless must give the guy a lot of credit for his ambitious efforts.
Read the full Jay Regan - Wash Me review
Saint Motel - Arrival
Saint Motel is one of those difficult to describe collectives. There are obvious soul elements on its Arrival album, yes. But theres so much more. The album Arrival is so much more than mere lovers music.
Read the full Saint Motel - Arrival review
MesAlfie - Hey, Super
MesAlfies Hey Super album is as pretty, as it is sad. These songs would probably, sadly, sound way out of place on pop radio because they many times have a timeless quality about them.
Read the full MesAlfie - Hey, Super review
The Fatal Pursuit - Sinful
The Fatal Pursuit, from Alberta, Canada, are comprised of a core of boyhood friends. Knowing each other well is likely one of the reasons these five musicians sound so tight together on Sinful.
Read the full The Fatal Pursuit - Sinful review
Kylie Odetta - Undertow
Kylie Odetta is only 19-years-old, which may surprise you the moment you hear her smoky singing voice. On one called Stress off Undertow, she sings like a woman with a lifetime of experience.
Read the full Kylie Odetta - Undertow review
Dolly Spartans - Time Sides With No One
There are moments - good moments - during Dolly Spartans Time Sides With No One where this self-described Brooklyn band sounds like one fine power-pop outfit out of the eighties
Read the full Dolly Spartans - Time Sides With No One review
Electric Ray and the Shockers - California Torpedo
Songs like T.R.O.U.B.L.E might lull you into thinking Electric Ray and the Shockers California Torpedo is little more than a rockabilly-tinged rave- up. Later, with Tempt Me though, the band charges into unbridled rock & roll fever.
Read the full Electric Ray and the Shockers - California Torpedo review
The Psyatics - Famous Monsters
The Psyatics may be a garage band, but their album Famous Monsters certainly doesnt sound like it was tracked in a messy old garage. Granted, this is guitar rock, in its most basic and best form.
Read the full The Psyatics - Famous Monsters review
Justin Allen and the Well Shots - White Oak & Kerosene
Justin Allen doesnt just point to John Mellencamp as an influence, he also sounds a whole lot like the Indiana man. White Oak & Kerosene is fine release that marks Justin Allen as one to keep a keen eye on.
Read the full Justin Allen and the Well Shots - White Oak & Kerosene review
My Silent Bravery - Face to Face
This acoustic collection finds Matthew Wade vocalizing a little like a (happier) emo folksinger. The standout track is Drunk Off the Sun, which is a love song to the beach during summer
Read the full My Silent Bravery - Face to Face review
Sami Wolf - See You On the Moon
Sami Wolfs album See You on the Moon is packed with wonderful, melodic pop music. Even something like Driving 90, which features a rapped vocal, still has a sweetness about it.
Read the full Sami Wolf - See You On the Moon review
BJ Wilbanks - Self-Titled
BJ Wilbanks music has been referred to as back porch soul, and theres just an obvious happy feeling to the music this man makes. This is not dreadfully down in the dumps music like - say - Nick Cave.
Read the full BJ Wilbanks - Self-Titled review
Miss Ohio - White Hot: The Best of Miss Ohio
One could be easily fooled that Miss Ohio is Drive-By Truckers, especially because of Magnet. Vocalist David Wilson is a dead ringer for DBT singer Patterson Hood. He has that scratchy, woebegone sound down pat.
Read the full Miss Ohio - White Hot: The Best of Miss Ohio review
Mike Llerena - Absence & The Heart
Just as certain men seemingly love all women, Llerena loves most varieties of rock & roll. Hes the guy that gets as excited about a Tom Petty classic rock concert, as he is about a local punk bands set, one imagines.
Read the full Mike Llerena - Absence & The Heart review
Dan Webb - Oedipus The King
Its easy to miss Webbs intelligence due to his sonic weirdness. But hes by no means some sort of raving lunatic. He just likes to stir the pot, both lyrically and musically. A delightful aural journey down Dan Webbs unique sonic rabbit hole.
Read the full Dan Webb - Oedipus The King review
American Dreamer - Restless Nights
Alabama once sang of how, if you want to play in Texas you need to have a fiddle in the band. American Dreamer stretches that Southwest-centric definition in the most peculiar and beautiful ways.
Read the full American Dreamer - Restless Nights review
Les Bohem - Moved to Duarte
Bohem is better known for his work in film. He won an Emmy for his work on Taken, a Steven Spielberg mini-series. Chances are good the songs on Moved to Duarte wont receive the same kind of mass exposure as Taken
Read the full Les Bohem - Moved to Duarte review
Ships Have Sailed - Whispers EP
The name Ships Have Sailed speaks to regret. That ship has already sailed, some might say when an opportunity has passed them by. Whispers is an EP of quiet regret and just a little bit of romantic hope.
Read the full Ships Have Sailed - Whispers EP review
Carly Van Skaik - Carly Van Shaik EP
Carly Van Skaik is described as an LA chanteuse, and because the first single from her mini record, Blue Diamond Eyes, has been used in the Showtime series Shameless, shes truly creating LA music.
Read the full Carly Van Skaik - Carly Van Shaik EP review
Beauty In The Breakdown - NEON
Beauty in the Breakdown, the LA-centered four-piece, sprung from percussionist Chastity Ashleys desire to create original music of her own. Shes already gained respect in the music community, having added percussion to Duran Duran shows.
Read the full Beauty In The Breakdown - NEON review
Wild Iris - Wild Iris
Wild Iris is what happens when Bryan Shelton and Kate Mullikin make music together. Their self-titled album is a mixture of various Americana forms, including folk, blues and even a touch of the Celtic.
Read the full Wild Iris - Wild Iris review
Colin Onderdonk - Proximity Effect
This set of tracks doesnt sound much like contemporary pop music. There is little that can be misconstrued as R&B, nor does the music rock out. Instead, it is filled with sophisticated, thoughtful pop music.
Read the full Colin Onderdonk - Proximity Effect review
Horse and Chariot - Big Treble
Horse and Chariot is a San Francisco trio. And though this is a modern recording, these three songs sound like they could have also come from San Franciscos 60s heyday.
Read the full Horse and Chariot - Big Treble review
Saul Losada - Energy
Saul Losadas Energy offers him the opportunity to stretch out and prove what he can do on an electric guitar. Also, the album is sprinkled with a few familiar songs, which makes it more than just a show off work.
Read the full Saul Losada - Energy review
Marty McKay - New York City Dreams
Marty McKay once played with Vanilla Ice. But dont hold this against him. In fact, his music could hardly be any more different from that Great White Hopeless. This Swiss rocker writes and sings heartfelt songs
Read the full Marty McKay - New York City Dreams review
The fact that most of these tracks clocking in at over six minutes, should give you a clue its an all-instrumental work. Matt Chanway is a master guitarist, and his chosen musical style is progressive metal.
Read the full Matt Chanway review
Verena von Horsten - Alien Angel Super Death
Alien Angel Super Death sounds like the title to a sci-fi movie. In fact, the music contained within could easily pass for said films soundtrack. But as spacey as this album tile reads and its music sounds, it is a highly personal album
Read the full Verena von Horsten - Alien Angel Super Death review
Phoebe Nir - Side Hustle
Phoebe Nir doesnt earn any style points for her overly enthusiastic version of Iggy Pops Lust for Life. (How this subversive little number ever became the soundtrack for a cruise ship commercial is beyond comprehension).
Read the full Phoebe Nir - Side Hustle review
Human Darts - Explicit Thoughts
The band Human Darts has been around since the 70s, or so the legend goes. The music its just released via Explicit Thoughts is primarily simple, goodtime punkish garage rock.
Read the full Human Darts - Explicit Thoughts review
Talia - Thugs They Look Like Angels
Talia lead vocalist, Nicholas Costa, sings with desperation and extreme vocal scratchiness. Almost every song on the film noir-esque-ly titled album sounds a little like Dramaramas radio hit, Anything, Anything.
Read the full Talia - Thugs They Look Like Angels review
Fallen Asunder - Self-Titled
Whether or not one enjoys the vocals of a bands lead singer can be the sole determining factor in how much one loves or hates an act. Case in point: Rush. Fallen Asunders lead singer might also be the same sort of lightning rod figure.
Read the full Fallen Asunder - Self-Titled review
Color You - The Grand Trine
Although Color You bills itself as a kind of modern day psychedelic rock act, one also hears a lot of beautifully melodic power-pop in its sound too, particularly during the hard driving Empty.
Read the full Color You - The Grand Trine review
Thirsty - Albatross
Led by Guy Bailey, formerly of The Quireboys, Thirsty is a beautifully sloppy rock & roll band. Albatross features smart songs that can be interpreted in multiple ways.
Read the full Thirsty - Albatross review
Panic In Eden - In the Company of Vultures
With the rise of EDM and dippy diva pop stars, many may believe rock is dead or at least dying. A band like Panic In Eden is here to tell the world to stop all its panicking.
Read the full Panic In Eden - In the Company of Vultures review
Rahm - Between the Lines
Rahm sings these five songs with great sweetness and vulnerability. The music is heartfelt throughout. Many of these songs are much like some of Bruce Springsteens more memorable 70s moments
Read the full Rahm - Between the Lines review
Bassett - Ghost Hwy
The duo Bassetts Ghost Hwy release is truly a beautifully haunted work. These auditory journey signposts will leave an indelible mark on your memory, all for the better.
Read the full Bassett - Ghost Hwy review
Scott Taylor - Blues Kitchen
Blues music gets right to the point, whether love is good or bad, which is why its eternally and universally loved and respected. And Scott Taylor cooks up all the good stuff on Blues Kitchen.
Read the full Scott Taylor - Blues Kitchen review
Tumbler - Come to the Edge
Its odd that Tumbler lists Soul Asylum, The Kinks and The Cure as similar artists. While there is an urgency in the way Harry and Richard Grace sing these songs, theres also an optimism you rarely in hear in Kinks songs
Read the full Tumbler - Come to the Edge review
Saint Blasphemer - Simon Templar
Saint Blasphemer is a unique band because much of the music on its Simon Templar EP express frustration of seeing friends and family members struggle with addictions
Read the full Saint Blasphemer - Simon Templar review
The Survival Code - Broken Strings
The Survival Code is a rock trio from London that knows the great value of musical brevity. The acts EP, Broken Strings, will remind you of Foo Fighters - and for all the right reasons
Read the full The Survival Code - Broken Strings review
Savage Henry and the Infamous One Pounders - Get Off Easy
While this groups lyrics may not win political correctness awards, its music is nevertheless impressive. Savage Henry sings with a gruff, authoritative voice. The band supports him with lively rocking guitar grooves.
Read the full Savage Henry and the Infamous One Pounders - Get Off Easy review
The Blue Poets - The Blue Poets
The Blue Poets is the group that gives guitar virtuoso Marcus Deml a forum to express his extensive musical talents. Theyve opened for the likes of Foreigner in the past
Read the full The Blue Poets - The Blue Poets review
The Slang - Night and Day
John Bobo and John Newsome have created some enjoyable chamber pop with Night and Day under the moniker The Slang, which is an odd name for such a literate act.
Read the full The Slang - Night and Day review
Tilted Axes - Music for Mobile Electric Guitars
In one famous Saturday Night Live sketch, Christopher Walken famous demanded a band in the studio give him more cowbell. Now, had he demanded more guitar - specifically more guitarists
Read the full Tilted Axes - Music for Mobile Electric Guitars review
Countless Thousands - You're Goddamn Right
It didnt come as any surprise to read that Countless Thousands list Against Me! as an influence because this punkish acts singer Danger Van Gorder is many times a dead ringer for AM!s Laura Jane Grace
Read the full Countless Thousands - You're Goddamn Right review
The smallest Creature - Reboot
Stefanos Marnerides calls his latest project The smallest Creature, and he points back to early Radiohead as one of his primary influences. And you can hear Radioheads inspiration
Read the full The smallest Creature - Reboot review
Winter Calling - FACES
Winter Calling is a progressive rock band, and there are plenty of rock fans that draw the taste line at progressive sounds. However, this groups singer, Chris Hodges, is so good, even progressive haters might make an exception.
Read the full Winter Calling - FACES review
diNMachine - The Opposites of Unity
diNMachine makes electronic music for people that normally appreciate electronic music The Opposites of Unity is a groovy (in the best sense of that term) project
Read the full diNMachine - The Opposites of Unity review
Almanac Mountain - Cryptoseismology
Almanac Mountain creates creepy, beautiful music. There is a cinematic quality to many of these tracks. Its as though simplistic pop songs just do not suffice when it comes to what this act intends to say through its music.
Read the full Almanac Mountain - Cryptoseismology review
Rabid Young - EP 1
You hear a lot of different musical influences coming through EP 1 by Rabid Young. A lot of these influences take on the form of passionate 80s musical voices.
Read the full Rabid Young - EP 1 review
Jim Peterik - The Songs
Although Jim Peterik may not be a household name, everybodys heard his songs. He co-wrote Survivors mega hit, The Eye of the Tiger, which began as song on the soundtrack to Rocky III
Read the full Jim Peterik - The Songs review
The Tigerlillies - 123456 EP
The Tigerlillies list such bands as Cheap Trick and The Ramones as influences. These six songs are built upon driving electric guitar riffs, which powers the acts melodic pop.
Read the full The Tigerlillies - 123456 EP review
Highland Kites - Let Me Run EP
Even though Humiliated features some slightly noisy electric guitar notes, Lamar never loses her gentle spirit. Shes a smart and talented performer, and Highland Kites floats on a welcome cool breeze with their Let Me Run EP.
Read the full Highland Kites - Let Me Run EP review
The Begowatts - Photoelectric
The Begowatts are lovably strange birds, indeed. Lead singer Benjamin Tofflemire sounds like Ian Astbury of The Cult, while being backed by a less bluesy ZZ Top at times.
Read the full The Begowatts - Photoelectric review
DownTown Mystic - Rock 'n' Roll Romantic
DownTown Mystic is the name Robert Allen goes by these days, and Rock n Roll Romantic is a collection of songs that will ring true with any true rock roll fan.
Read the full DownTown Mystic - Rock 'n' Roll Romantic review
Katie Burden - Strange Moon
Strange Moon is an album that twists and turns like an unpredictable stream. Shes on a journey with no set destination, and she just wants us along for the ride.
Read the full Katie Burden - Strange Moon review
The Departure - Gateways EP
The track on The Departures Gateways EP that stands out most is actually a ballad, which is titled Lonely Eyes. Much of this seven-song extended play is comprised of the sort of emo-y punk-metal that fills most slots at Warped Tour.
Read the full The Departure - Gateways EP review
Tod Hughes - Time Slow Down
An album title like Time Slow Down suggests songs about life in the fast lane. However, Tod Hughes is by no means speeding down lifes highway. Rather, hes a more of a stop and smell the roses kind of guy
Read the full Tod Hughes - Time Slow Down review
Chameleon Technology - Blank Canvas
Chameleon Technology is a one-man band, manned by the wonderfully named Max Histrionic. Blank Canvas, though, is an inaccurate name for such a busy and engaging EP of music.
Read the full Chameleon Technology - Blank Canvas review
Lily Lambert - Moving On
Lily Lamberts not the kind of woman that hides the truth in hopes of sparing anothers feelings. With the songs that fill out Moving On, this part-Irish/part-Welsh singer/songwriter tells it like it is
Read the full Lily Lambert - Moving On review
Wonky Tonk - Stuff We Leave Behind
Jasmine Lorraine Poole, who goes by the stage name Wonky Tonk, called her full-length Stuff We Leave Behind, and the albums song titles are most often names of places - whether these are countries, cities or streets.
Read the full Wonky Tonk - Stuff We Leave Behind review
Dan Lipton - Breathing In
The name that comes most quickly to mind while listening to Liptons music is Slaid Cleaves, also a fiercely independent folkish singer/songwriter that often gets lumped into the country field.
Read the full Dan Lipton - Breathing In review
Turning Virtue - A Temporary Human Experience
Although Turning Virtue is a self-described progressive rock band, there are moments on its A Temporary Human Experience album where other unexpected genres come more immediately to mind
Read the full Turning Virtue - A Temporary Human Experience review
Post Death Soundtrack - The Unlearning Curve
Canadians are stereotypically the polite people on the planet. Always friendly, never raising their voices. However, Post Death Soundtrack sound as angry - if not angrier - than Nine Inch Nails
Read the full Post Death Soundtrack - The Unlearning Curve review
Charlie Haley - Today
Near death experiences will change a mans perspective on life - without question. So when Charley Haley sings about seeing Jesus face-to-face during On The Other Side
Read the full Charlie Haley - Today review
Black Oil Brothers - Mean Business
The Black Oil Brothers arent actual brothers. But then again, neither were the Ramones and many other faux-brotherly acts over the years. They are, however, familial members of the blues tradition.
Read the full Black Oil Brothers - Mean Business review
John Nichols Band - The Country Life EP
Although the John Nichols Bands EP, The Country Life, is but four songs, it still covers significant sonic territory. With The Country Life, the John Nichols band sounds primed for commercial country success.
Read the full John Nichols Band - The Country Life EP review
Rock Reads: Trouble Boys: The True Story of the Replacements
Bob Mehrs exhaustive Replacements biography Trouble Boys : The True Story of the Replacements biography is guaranteed to fill in most all the blanks for diehard band fans.
Read the full Trouble Boys: The True Story of the Replacements review
Big World Abide: The Best of Eric Anders
To help give it its cohesive sound, Anders turned to Jeff Peters (whose credits include prior work with the Beach Boys and Brian Setzer). The result is somewhat lethargic, yet also aurally rewarding.
Read the full Big World Abide: The Best of Eric Anders review
The Magic Lightnin' Boys - Stealin' Thunder
Unlike, say, the Black Keys, a band that oftentimes skirts around the edges of the blues, The Magic Lightnin Boys many times dig right it and let it roll.
Read the full The Magic Lightnin' Boys - Stealin' Thunder review
Armonite - The Sun is New Each Day
How much you dig this album largely depends upon how you feel about progressive rock and its musical relatives. If its your cup of tea, by all means drink up and refill to your hearts content.
Read the full Armonite - The Sun is New Each Day review
Billy Crain - Family Matters
Billy Crain is likely better known to the insider music world, than the wider public. Hes toured and/or recorded with such high profile artists as Dixie Chicks, Shania Twain and The Outlaws.
Read the full Billy Crain - Family Matters review
Bad Reed - Bad Reed EP
Its been often said that the best things come in small packages, and so Bad Reed has done us a good deed in supplying this brief, three-track introduction.
Read the full Bad Reed - Bad Reed EP review
Plastic Yellow Band - Above Gravity
Plastic Yellow Band calls what it does new classic rock. Above Gravity may include fewer light moments than darker ones, but its nevertheless a skilled effort, from start to finish.
Read the full Plastic Yellow Band - Above Gravity review
Nemo James - The Minstrel
Nemo James calls his album The Minstrel, and there could hardly be a more appropriate title for this work. He has one of those voices that would have made him just as effective a minstrel back in the day
Read the full Nemo James - The Minstrel review
J Burn - Burnt Blue
There are times when Burn sounds like an old time-y singer. In his more cynical moments, however, he comes off a little like David Lowery of Cracker.
Read the full J Burn - Burnt Blue review
The Boy From The Crowd - Where The Bees Come To Die
The Bees Come To Die is a good, sincere blast of rock & roll noise. Its not calculated or in many ways premeditated. Instead, it retains a degree of relentless spontaneity, and is intended to be played loud and often.
Read the full The Boy From The Crowd - Where The Bees Come To Die review
Midwest Soul Xchange - New American Century
Although the group includes the word soul in its name, you wont hear a lot of what might be considered American soul music over these 11 tracks. Instead, the sounds of Pink Floyd seems to have had a bigger impact on this acts overall style.
Read the full Midwest Soul Xchange - New American Century review
Opium Denn - Demarkation
The group Opium Denn likes to shroud itself in mystery and is also said to use HEV (Health-Science Enhanced Vibrations to create music that gives the listener an unusual buzz.
Read the full Opium Denn - Demarkation review
A Vile Display of Humanity - Self-Titled
A Vile Display of Humanitys self-titled album lives up to its punk rock reputation. This is also not that annoying pop-punk either, which is an oxymoron if there ever was one. Youre either punk, or youre not.
Read the full A Vile Display of Humanity - Self-Titled review
Tumbler - You Said
This is folk music of quite the British variety. Whenever Richard sings, his accent comes through in the same way, say, Ray Davies does with The Kinks and Morrissey.
Read the full Tumbler - You Said review
Robot Garden - Self-titled
Robot Garden is an alternative rock band from Argentina that is said to be inspired by White Stripes. While this is definitely stripped down hard rock, what comes out of the speakers is only slightly like that famous Detroit duo
Read the full Robot Garden - Self-titled review
Lozk - Meaningless Words
Its been said music is the universal language, and this fine project proves that truth. You dont need to now exactly what Jimenez is saying to feel what hes feeling. The music conveys his feelings expertly.
Read the full Lozk - Meaningless Words review
Space Apaches - Smokin' Voyages
Space Apaches are throwback to classic rock of the 60s and 70s. They make the kind of music that would cause a TV pitchman from yesteryear to remark, Hey man, is that freedom rock?
Read the full Space Apaches - Smokin' Voyages review
Elessar Thiessen - A Rainy Week in Paradise
When Elessar Thiessen wishes for a girl that stays up all night praising her creator during I Need a Woman, its clear Thiessen is not your typical singer/songwriter.
Read the full Elessar Thiessen - A Rainy Week in Paradise review
Samuel Claiborne - Love Lust and Genocide
Samuel Claibornes poetic skills are best on display during Succulence (Blasphemy), which finds the performer speak-singing over Steve Gorns bamboo flute. Its an eerie piece of literary music.
Read the full Samuel Claiborne - Love Lust and Genocide review
Five Hundredth Year - A Rose From Ashes
Five Hundredth Years A Rose From Ashes is a strong hard rock offering. While this is a tightly performed collection of songs, the band doesnt always separate itself well from other similar acts.
Read the full Five Hundredth Year - A Rose From Ashes review
The Furious Seasons - My Love Is Strong
David Steinhart is the heart behind The Furious Seasons, and My Love Is Strong is a strong, variety packed musical effort. At times Steinhart comes off like a modern American rocker, other times a distinct Roger McGuinn vibe comes through.
Read the full The Furious Seasons - My Love Is Strong review
Nature Ganganbaigal - To Where Tengger Leads Me
It may be difficult for the typical pop music fan to get his/her head around Nature Ganganbaigals music. Hes an accomplished Mongolian horse-head (No, I dont know what that means) fiddle player.
Read the full Nature Ganganbaigal - To Where Tengger Leads Me review
Grumsling - A Church, On a Boat, In the Sea
Oaklands Grumsling can be gentle, thoughtful and relatively meditative. This side of the bands personality is best revealed during the folk-ish, slightly jazzy Roberta Sparrow. However the act can also be loud and boisterous.
Read the full Grumsling - A Church, On a Boat, In the Sea review
Delta Deep - Delta Deep
The mixture of hard rocking instrumentation and soulful harmonized backing vocals is truly a thing of beauty. If musicians with their banks of computers and ditsy divas are leaving you cold, Delta Deep is nearly certain to warm our soul.
Read the full Delta Deep - Delta Deep review
Ajay Mathur - 9 to 3
Ajay Mathur is described as an India-born, Switzerland based, but that doesnt quite jibe with the music. This is an album filled melodic, power-pop that sometimes sounds like the Beatles -- had they never visited India at all.
Read the full Ajay Mathur - 9 to 3 review
The Unravelling - Master Drone (single)
The Unravelling is a duo featuring vocalist Steve Moore and instrumentalist Gustavo De Beauville. The single Master Drone is an angry little tune. It may remind you of Faith No More, back during their 90s prime.
Read the full The Unravelling - Master Drone (single) review
Jered Deck - 17 Miles (single)
Although Jered Deck points back John Mellencamp and Tom Petty as musical influences, Bob Seger - and to a lesser degree, Kid Rock - can certainly be picked up during his single 17 Miles.
Read the full Jered Deck - 17 Miles (single) review
Get To Know... First Decree
What would you suppose would be the first decree of First Decree, the four-piece alt-metal band out of Cheyenne, Wyoming? The band has stated that their ultimate goal is to have their music inspire and encourage as many people as possible.
Read the full First Decree review
Ransom Scenery - Ear to Ear
Ransom Scenery is a duo comprised of Chaepter and Drew Lowery. This album is appropriately titled Ear to Ear because listening to these songs is truly a stereophonic experience.
Read the full Ransom Scenery - Ear to Ear review
Luca Bash - Single Drops
Drawn from his four EPs (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Key Black), plus a new song (Your Tomorrow) Luca Bash makes folk-ish music with a distinctively world music vibe running through it.
Read the full Luca Bash - Single Drops review
[debut] - Postcards From Berlin
The act [debut] is the name given to Gareth Thomas music, and Postcards From Berlin is an enjoyable throwback to electronic music from the 80s and 90s, particularly that of Depeche Mode and Nine Inch Nails.(2 stars)
Read the full [debut] - Postcards From Berlin review
Secondborn - Symbols
If you can tell Secondborn is from Lafayette, LA, youre better at noticing Southern accents than most. Symbols is a tight, rocking EP that will immediately appeal to anybody thats attended a Warped Tour.(2 stars)
Read the full Secondborn - Symbols review
Staring At the Sun - Break The Silence
Staring At The Suns Break The Silence begins with a propulsive song titled Trust No One. With a powerful groove and layered vocal, the track sounds a little like Bad Religion at its poppiest. (3 stars)
Read the full Staring At the Sun - Break The Silence review
Small Leaks Sink Ships - Face Yourself, and Remove Your Sandals
After you listen to a track like The Devil is in the Desert, off Small Leaks Sink Ships Face Yourself, and Remove Your Sandals, you can be pretty sure this act isnt out to conquer top-40 radio. (3 stars)
Read the full Small Leaks Sink Ships - Face Yourself, and Remove Your Sandals review
Steve Benjamins - Sightlines
You can hear a little Ron Sexsmith in Steve Benjamins vocal style. This is quiet, thoughtful music that can help wake you up gently in the morning, or calm you down toward the end of a busy day.(4 stars)
Read the full Steve Benjamins - Sightlines review
Nic Nassuet - Eleutherios
Nassuet is as influenced by by Gothic rock as he is inspired by more folk-ish artists like Nike Drake. However, when youre listening to these songs, he truly sounds like someone that may have originally cut his teeth on glam metal (3 stars)
Read the full Nic Nassuet - Eleutherios review
Matthew Santos - Into The Further
Matthew Santos has one of those voices you cant forget once youve heard it. Much like Jeff Buckley, it has a soaring quality that makes you wonder if it has any limitations at all. His album Into The Further, is a fine showcase for what this man (and his voice) can do.(4 stars)
Read the full Matthew Santos - Into The Further review
Rock Masters Band - Hit The City/Diamonds double single
Rock Masters Band is a glam-y hard rock band from Helsinki, Finland, and you can hear the Finish in Sami Haxu Hakalas voice when he sings these two new songs. Theres just something cool about that.
Read the full Rock Masters Band - Hit The City/Diamonds double single review
CalatrilloZ - Psalms of Zahyin
CalatrilloZ is a symphonic rock band from London, and the symphonic side of its character is especially obvious during Lords of Misery, where the group gets all grandiose, like early Queen. The rock is hard, but the vocals are layered and operatic. (2 stars)
Read the full CalatrilloZ - Psalms of Zahyin review
Winchester Revival - Burden's Landing
Winchester Revival sounds like a relatively straight forward rock band - at least until we get to the song Diligence, off its Burdens Landing album. This track is odd in that it has a bit of a dance groove to it. (3 stars)
Read the full Winchester Revival - Burden's Landing review
The Vigilance Committee - Exit A Hero
You really dont hear many concept albums these days. However The Vigilance Committees Exit A Hero is just such an animal. Its described as the story of the first vigilance committees of San Francisco in the mid-1800s. (3 stars)
Read the full The Vigilance Committee - Exit A Hero review
Bitter's Kiss - Self-titled
Bitters Kisss obvious big selling point is vocalist Chloe Baker, who sings in a little girls voice, yet obviously retains a worldly-wise perspective on life. Chloe sings and plays guitar and piano, while Michael Baker plays guitar, piano, bass and drums. (4 stars)
Read the full Bitter's Kiss - Self-titled review
Broken Guru - Bent Up Halo
This music is rough n tumble rock & roll, notable for its soulful playing and rough-around-the-edges vocals. Its also is an album for those that are sick and tired of slick, soulless rock. Dig it, man!(3 stars)
Read the full Broken Guru - Bent Up Halo review
The Great Game - Self-Titled
This act loves a lot of different musics - maybe too many. But if you have restless listening ears, this project ought to keep you busy for a while. (3 stars)
Read the full The Great Game - Self-Titled review
Vince Grant - My Depression Is Always Trying To Kill Me
Its rare you find a collection of music with such an honest title. Sure, The Smiths, The Cure, Pink Floyd, Nick Drake and so many others sing about the same things, yet Vince Grant comes right out and says it: My Depression is Always Trying to Kill Me.(3 stars)
Read the full Vince Grant - My Depression Is Always Trying To Kill Me review
Whale Fall - The Madrean
Whale Fall is an instrumental group from L.A., which takes its name from the way a new sea life community is amazingly formed whenever a whale carcass decays.(3 stars)
Read the full Whale Fall - The Madrean review
Return for Refund
People talk about how the grunge era died out after the passing of Kurt Cobain. However, albums like Return for Refunds self-titled EP offer living proof that grunge, or grunge-like styles, are still alive and well.(3 stars)
Read the full Return for Refund review
Attik Door - Never In Agreement
Attik Door is a good old fashioned hard rock band. Led by the many-times gritty lead vocals from Liana Tovmasyan, this hard rock act from San Francisco proves it knows well how to get both fast and loud.(3 stars)
Read the full Attik Door - Never In Agreement review
Artur U & the New City Limits - Holiday From Eternity
When listening to Holiday From Eternity by Artur U & the New City Limits, its difficult to get away from just how much vocalist Artur U sounds like Paul Weller (of The Jam).(3 stars)
Read the full Artur U & the New City Limits - Holiday From Eternity review
Plastic Handgun - Involuntary Memories
Plastic Handgun comes off, upon first glance, as an impotent name. However, the music it creates is quite powerful. This music sounds a lot like 80s The Cure did, back when it wasnt uncommon for that Goth-related act to create extended tracks with very little vocalization(3 stars)
Read the full Plastic Handgun - Involuntary Memories review
Arthur Fowler - What's Keeping Me Going
Arthur Fowler may have grown up as a Jimi Hendrix-loving singer/guitarist, but hes since evolved into a far more gentle singer/songwriter type. His album Whats Keeping Me Going is mostly filled with humble singing, (mainly) acoustic guitar work(3 stars)
Read the full Arthur Fowler - What's Keeping Me Going review
Sir Cadian Rhythm
Sir Cadian Rhythm is a fantastic name for a band. It bespeaks Duke Ellington-meets-the human body clock. Sadly, though, this self-titled EP doesnt quite live up to such an ambitious moniker.(2 stars)
Read the full Sir Cadian Rhythm review
Echo Sparks - Ghost Town Girl
Echo Sparks is a roots-y trio from Orange County, California. That may read like an oxymoron to some, but if you believe no good thing comes out of The OC, you probably watch far too much reality television.(3 stars)
Read the full Echo Sparks - Ghost Town Girl review
The Torn Images - Reviver
Based in Fountain Valley, a small Orange County city, the act claims to be influenced by such pop-rock acts as Blur and Coldplay. But its other influences (Nirvana, Pixies) show up much more on this hard rocking release.(3 stars)
Read the full The Torn Images - Reviver review
CommonUnion59 - Heartbeat Serenade
CommonUnion59 might call San Francisco, California home, but when Laura Malasig sings Little White House on this duos Heartbeat Serenade, youd swear she came straight from the Appalachian Mountains.(3 stars)
Read the full CommonUnion59 - Heartbeat Serenade review
Dave Plaehn - Radio Sister
Radio Sister is a bit of a departure for Dave Plaehn, an artist that usually records and performs contemporary blues. While he still plays harmonica on this effort, he also many times applies it to non-bluesy material.(3 stars)
Read the full Dave Plaehn - Radio Sister review
The Kiss That Took A Trip - Electroforest
The Kiss That Took A Trip is the creation of Spaniard M.D. Trello. A self-described factotum, Trello does have a sneaky way of creating musical beauty.(3 stars)
Read the full The Kiss That Took A Trip - Electroforest review
I Am Love - Self-titled
This alternative rock act is a bit of an oddball collective, yet there is something appealing about a band that strives to create art for arts sake. And with this self-titled album, they clearly succeed.(3 stars)
Read the full I Am Love - Self-titled review
Ethan Jano - I'll Be Fine
Ethan Jano is certainly a throwback artist. He goes all the way back to Bob Dylan, particularly when Dylan connected with Johnny Cash to create Nashville Skyline.(3 stars)
Read the full Ethan Jano - I'll Be Fine review
Oswald - Ride
Although much of what Oswald does with Ride amounts to hip hop social commentary, the track Figure It Out stands out from the short set with a rap built over an acoustic guitar part.(3 stars)
Read the full Oswald - Ride review
Joe Con - I Choose You
Con is no Im THE man! sort of rapper, but more of a sensitive, singer-songwriter that chooses rap to best express himself. Had James Taylor been born a few decades later, he may have sounded just a little like Con.(3 stars)
Read the full Joe Con - I Choose You review
G2P - EP
G2P is a power trio from Tampa, Florida and EP is a short little offering filled with a whole lot of angst. Led by Nathaniel Shepherd, this release sometimes sounds like a slightly more funky Nirvana.(3 stars)
Read the full G2P - EP review
The Great Escape
Theres so much sonic variety on this album, its difficult to know where to start in singing its praises. This is one fantastic album, and should be required listening for anybody on the lookout for the potential next-great-band.(4 stars)
Read the full The Great Escape review
Workers - Totem
Workers vocalist Dan Greenwald sings these three songs with a warbling, yet effectively sincere voice. Although pop is the best generic description of this music, there is also a distinctively Americana influence on these recordings.
Read the full Workers - Totem review
While this is a constantly powerful recording, it tends adhere a little too closely to the anger emotion, without too much variation. However, if youre feeling angry, but also in the mood to dance, this just might do the trick.(3 stars)
Read the full Lovesucker review
Pacanomad - Restless
Pacanomad is a soulful quartet from London, Ontario in Canada, even though the words soulful and Canada dont often naturally play together well within the same sentence. However, vocalist Chantel Rivard leads this outfit through five punchy tunes.(3 stars)
Read the full Pacanomad - Restless review
Michael Cullen - True Believer
Michael Cullen is a songwriter almost as open and honest as Nick Cave, with a singing style nearly as low registered as that famous Australian- albeit with more ability to remain on key. If anything, Michael Cullen is a true believer, primarily in sad romantic songs(3 stars)
Read the full Michael Cullen - True Believer review
The Oxford Coma - Morphine
Bands like The Oxford Coma likely get lumped in with contemporary metal, simply because the guitar riffs are thick and loud. However, if you listen to Morphine youll hear that something much deeper is going on.(4 stars)
Read the full The Oxford Coma - Morphine review
RxGF - Any Other Way
Its uncanny how much RxGFs Angeline Schaaf sounds Siouxsie Sioux of Siouxsie and the Banshees during Any Other Way. This is actually a good thing, because that Goth pioneers vocals always grabbed your attention.(4 stars)
Read the full RxGF - Any Other Way review
Unfathomed of Abyss - Arisen Upon Oblivion
Make no mistake about it, Unfathomed of Abyss is Kevin Prices baby. This project is described as an apocalyptic symphonic black metal album, which provides an imaginative view into the cosmos.(3 stars)
Read the full Unfathomed of Abyss - Arisen Upon Oblivion review
Cold Blue Water
Its easy to forget just how enjoyable a fine blues band can sound until a really good act crosses your path. Cold Blue Water (with its self-titled release) is just such a worthy act.(3 stars)
Read the full Cold Blue Water review
Billy Roberts and the Rough Riders - The Last of the Originals
Roberts has a cynical-sounding voice that comes out more like The Dream Syndicates Steve Wynn - with and extra dose of Lou Reeds cynicism added in - than anything we in America might call country.(3 stars)
Read the full Billy Roberts and the Rough Riders - The Last of the Originals review
Dimestore Prophets - Be Yourself
One imagines Dimestore Prophets appreciate sunny days more than most, as theyre from Moses Lake, WA, a place where it likely rains a lot. However, if these guys can celebrate the sunshine, why cant the rest of us? (3 stars)
Read the full Dimestore Prophets - Be Yourself review
Michael Leonard Witham - A Scandal in the Violets
Witham has a way of drawing you into his musical scenarios that his irresistible. Storytelling is quickly becoming a lost art in contemporary music, and that leaves Witham one of the treasured endangered species. (3 stars)
Read the full Michael Leonard Witham - A Scandal in the Violets review
David Mohai - Calm Like A Bomb
This track, Calm Like A Bomb, features a spoken word-like vocal over a late night jazz arrangement highlighted by jazzy electric guitar. It may remind you of Cake songs, or even Stan Ridgeway-led Wall Of Voodoo tracks. (4 stars)
Read the full David Mohai - Calm Like A Bomb review
Darrin James - Bombs Away/Covert Mission Anthem single
These are the kinds of sounds that must be stretched out and fully developed to have maximum impact. Darrin James has a fantastic thing going on, and these two tracks are a pair of perfect samples of his sound. (4 stars)
Read the full Darrin James - Bombs Away/Covert Mission Anthem single review
Manilow - Cease and Desist
Manilow is surely an ironic name for this London rock band. Vocalist Dean Moston is far closer to Johnny Rotten than crooner Barry, thats for sure. Its four-song EP may remind you of early Sex Pistols.(4 stars)
Read the full Manilow - Cease and Desist review
The Society Islands - The Big Sleep
If all you think about is Krafwerk when you consider Germany, The Society Islands may cause you to makes some serious reconsiderations of your German music knowledge.(4 stars)
Read the full The Society Islands - The Big Sleep review
EndAnd - Fun Times with Sh-tty People
When you imagine music from Brooklyn, you picture hipsters playing complicated, deeply lyrical songs for the enlightened few. You dont expect a whole lot of angry, political punk to come out of that scene.(3 stars)
Read the full EndAnd - Fun Times with Sh-tty People review
aCr - Ghost Note Manifest
Alvaro Che Rodriguez, who goes by the artist name of aCr, gives us an aggressive dosage of rock power with Ghost Note Manifest. This singer/songwriter plays everything on his three-song EP and comes off deadly serious.(3 stars)
Read the full aCr - Ghost Note Manifest review
The Morning Birds - Bloom
While most people will enjoy some of these mixes more than others, theres really never a dull moment. Each track tries something a little different and proves that variations on themes can be seemingly endless.(3 stars)
Read the full The Morning Birds - Bloom review
Paul Maged - Diamonds & Demons
Maged has also studied acting and even performed some stand-up comedy. With such experience, youd think hed already learned that one of the quickest ways to lose an audiences attention is to get a little too preachy.(2 stars)
Read the full Paul Maged - Diamonds & Demons review
Clocks & Clouds - The Creation of Matter
To call Clocks & Clouds a three-piece band is more than a little misleading. Thats because, rather than typical guitar/bass/drums, this trio features drums/cello/violin instead. Theyve been described as the act where Skrillex meets Mozart.(3 stars)
Read the full Clocks & Clouds - The Creation of Matter review
Sister Speak - Rise Up For Love
Many of the songs on Rise Up For Love are said to be inspired by Sherri Annes recent recuperation from a significant pelvis break. Being laid up like that can certainly slow a person down. However, it can also be a blessing in disguise.(3 stars)
Read the full Sister Speak - Rise Up For Love review
Dog Society - In the Shade
If youre old enough, listening to Dog Society may make you a little nostalgic. Thats because this is a bit of a throwback band -- albeit in the best sense of the term as it brings back fond memories of 60s rock.(3 stars)
Read the full Dog Society - In the Shade review
Just Walden - High Street Barton Blues
Dont be misled by the album title, because this is not a blues recording. Of course, it is blues influenced. But then again, so is almost all popular music - at least in some way or another. The most obvious influence, instead, is Elton John.(3 stars)
Read the full Just Walden - High Street Barton Blues review
When Summer's Gone - Knockout Mechanism
The trouble with this album (and band as a whole, for that matter) is that it just doesnt have many distinguishing features. None of these tracks scream single, nor does the musicianship make you return to any one track again and again.(2 stars)
Read the full When Summer's Gone - Knockout Mechanism review
AUG - Be Careful What You Wish For...
The album title, Be Careful What You Wish For..., nearly begs the question: What if I wished for a rejuvenated Ozzy Osbourne? If you made such a wish, it may be granted in the form of AUG. (3 stars)
Read the full AUG - Be Careful What You Wish For... review
Xombie - Capital X
Its fitting that boxer, mixed martial artist and sometimes actor Kimbo Slice appears in the video for Rock Bottom, the first single from Xombie of its Capital X album. This bands music is like the soundtrack to a street brawl(3 stars)
Read the full Xombie - Capital X review
Larusso - Life in Static
When you consider Larusso you may likely be thinking to yourself, Can any good punk band come out of Salt Lake City? Not the first place youd think of when looking out for great new punk rock music(3 stars)
Read the full Larusso - Life in Static review
Heylel - Nebulae
Science tells us nebulae is the plural of a nebula, which are interstellar clouds of dust, hydrogen, helium and other gases. That doesnt sound very musical, though.(2 stars)
Read the full Heylel - Nebulae review
Lovesick Saints - Dia De Los Muertos
Lovesick Saints sure sound a lot like Social Distortion. However, instead of coming off like a rip-off of that fine band, they instead sound more like a really nice chip off the old block.(4 stars)
Read the full Lovesick Saints - Dia De Los Muertos review
Keith Alan Mitchell - This Clumsy World
Keith Alan Mitchell may not be the strongest vocalist - he tends to drift off key now and again. However, theres one song on this folk-y 12-song collection, Swaying, which makes this album above average.(3 stars)
Read the full Keith Alan Mitchell - This Clumsy World review
The Lost Poets - Insubordia
If you think Gothic music died with the demise of Bauhaus and the like, The Lost Poets may prove you wrong. Led by vocalist/guitarist David Rosengren, this act sings a lot about death, and other dark subject matter.(3 stars)
Read the full The Lost Poets - Insubordia review
Wetwood Smokes - Earth Tones & Red
Wetwood Smokes Earth Tones & Red opens with the catchy A Better Man, which combines a Kings Of Leon-esque vocal in some places, with a world music-y Local Natives groove. Lyrically, though, it fails the truth test(3 stars)
Read the full Wetwood Smokes - Earth Tones & Red review
Sulu Babylon - Colour
Stylistically, Colour may remind you of 80s new wave pop. Such is certainly the case with Save Our Souls. You can also catch a bit of Weezers influence on the lumbering groove of Liar -- especially its big guitar intro. (3 stars)
Read the full Sulu Babylon - Colour review
The Falling Birds - Native America
If all you heard by The Falling Birds was Darling, you might suspect this trio was attempting to become the second coming of Nirvana. However, most of the rest of this EP is far less rocking.(3 stars)
Read the full The Falling Birds - Native America review
The Age of the Universe - Singularity
The Age of the Universe has drawn comparisons to Muse. And when singer/guitarist Isaac Reese pours on the electric guitar riff-age during Alive, the opening song for the album, you realize such a RIYL is not at all unfounded.(3 stars)
Read the full The Age of the Universe - Singularity review
Eron Falbo - 73
Eron Falbo is an enigma. Hes from Brazil, but youd never guess that by the way he sings. He vocalizes with Leonard Cohens cynicism, yet he combines this emotional approach with a Lou Reed snarl.(4 stars)
Read the full Eron Falbo - 73 review
Gustavo De Beauville - Volume 1
Gustavo De Beauville is a brilliant guitarist, with a successful track record of contributing music for games, films and even other bands. However, Volume 1 represents his brave move of stepping out as a solo artist.(3 stars)
Read the full Gustavo De Beauville - Volume 1 review
Dinah Thorpe - Lullabies and Wake-Up Calls
If youre looking for something a little out of the ordinary that will force you to pay extra close attention, Dinah Thorpes Lullabies and Wake-Up Calls will reward you with a satisfying, creative listening experience(3 stars)
Read the full Dinah Thorpe - Lullabies and Wake-Up Calls review
Plastic Yellow Band - Breathe Air
Plastic Yellow Band (which reads an awful lot like John and Yokos Plastic Ono band, intentionally), is pretty much Gerry Jennings one-man-band. Similarly, there is the obvious influence of the Beatles - on both World Party and Plastic Yellow Band.(4 stars)
Read the full Plastic Yellow Band - Breathe Air review
Mangoseed - Basquiat
Mangoseed is a four member funk-rock-reggae band from London. Led by vocalist Nicholai La Barrie, who originally formed the act with guitarist Karlos Coleman, has titled its album Basquiat. This group is all over the map, stylistically.(3 stars)
Read the full Mangoseed - Basquiat review
Books on Fate - Memory
Vocally, Dishart is a little bit of an acquired taste, in that he combines the un -Velvety, off key vocal tone of Lou Reed-inspired Dean Wareham singing, with the permanently depressed attitude of Sun Kil Moon (and former Red House Painters) Mark Kozelek.(2 stars)
Read the full Books on Fate - Memory review
Godhead - The Shadow Realigned
Godheads The Shadow Realigned is a friends-with-benefits kind of thing because it includes 14 unique remixes provided by 14 different producers. Headed up by Jason Miller (the acts lead singer and songwriter), Godhead first came to the publics attention via its relationship with Marilyn Manson.(3 stars)
Read the full Godhead - The Shadow Realigned review
no:carrier - Wisdom & Failure
At times, this act sounds like early new wave electronic acts, such as Pet Shop Boys, Erasure and the like. In other moments, though, they sound closer to a folk pairing - one that just happens to apply electronic elements to its folk-ish songs.(4 stars)
Read the full no:carrier - Wisdom & Failure review
Gabriel Olteanu - Gabriel Olteanu EP
Gabriel Olteanu was born in Romania and now lives in Montreal, Canada, but just as you cant always exactly tell Scorpions are from Germany, this hard rock guitarist/singer pretty much sounds like a classic American metal performer, rather than one with multiple international backgrounds.(3 stars)
Read the full Gabriel Olteanu - Gabriel Olteanu EP review
Direct Divide - Bridges
Life can get a little dull when there are so many (too many) predictable guitar/bass/drum bands making simplistic hard rock. But Bridges is like an ever so slightly exotic meal, in an otherwise generic fast food world. (3 stars)
Read the full Direct Divide - Bridges review
Particle Wave - Grand Unifier
Greg Maechlings delicate, Ray Davies-esque voice, is the first aural element announcing itself on the title track of Particle Waves new Grand Unifier album. This unique vocal sound, however, can be both a blessing and a curse.(2 stars)
Read the full Particle Wave - Grand Unifier review
Josh Matthews - Co-Patriot
Whereas in the past Josh Matthews minimalist approach to music has sometimes been just a little too minimal for its own good, this latest effort includes just enough musical spice to keep the aural feast interesting.(3 stars)
Read the full Josh Matthews - Co-Patriot review
Monks of Mellonwah - Turn the People
This latest effort finds the act mixing in new, welcome elements into an already solid musical base. Listen to Escaping Alcatraz, and dont be surprised if Muses epic rock reputation doesnt come immediately to mind.(4 stars)
Read the full Monks of Mellonwah - Turn the People review
Heidi Howe - Be Good
Its blasphemy for mainstream country singers to admit they love both the Ramones and George Jones in the same breath, but Heidi Howe doesnt have any hesitation in pointing to these two sonic opposites as being equally inspirational to her.(4 stars)
Read the full Heidi Howe - Be Good review
Kevin Jenkins - Step Inside
Perhaps Step Outside might be a better title than Step Inside for Kevin Jenkins soulful new album. With it, Jenkins steps outside his usual sideman role, one hes fulfilled for such artists as Roberta Flack and Cyndi Lauper. In fact, his current employer is Shemekia Copeland.(3.5 stars)
Read the full Kevin Jenkins - Step Inside review
Slack Armada - Slack Armada EP
Slack Armada proves how inventive creating instrumental music can truly be. Unlike, say, smooth jazz, which is the ultimate in compositional laziness, Hrabak is like a child with a Lego set where the skys the limit when it comes to inventiveness.(4.5 stars)
Read the full Slack Armada - Slack Armada EP review
Stoney - More than Animals
If you think Arcade Fire is completely original, just take a listen to Defiantly Loved by Stoney, which is a dead ringer for early Arcade Fire music. Although Stoney, a Brit, can be a little on the derivative side, his full-length More Than Animals is nevertheless a strong album.(4 stars)
Read the full Stoney - More than Animals review
Piqued Jacks - Just a Machine
What happens musically when you transport brothers from Italy to Austin, Texas? In the case of Piqued Jacks, you get something a little like an angrier Red Hot Chilli Peppers. The album Just a Machine, is a lot like early Red Hot Chilli Peppers, sans all the lyrical silliness.(4 stars)
Read the full Piqued Jacks - Just a Machine review
The Plum Magnetic - Terra Animata
The Plum Magnetic probably gets compared to Bela Fleck and the Flecktones because of Trent Ciolinos 6-string banjo work, which is featured prominently on the album Terra Animata. However, there are many beautifully odd musical combinations explored with this work.(4 stars)
Read the full The Plum Magnetic - Terra Animata review
Amelia Scalies - I Should've Known
Amelia Scalies inhabits unusual territory. Shes a rocker, yet she doesnt rock out the way, say, Joan Jett likes to do it. Nevertheless, shes far more of a rocker than someone like pop star, Kelly Clarkson.
Scalies has a crystal clear singing voice, which separates her from many of the girl rockers
Read the full Amelia Scalies - I Should've Known review
Umbrella Bed - Refill
Umbrella Bed is a fun throwback to the glory days of ska music, but this particular EP is not going to have the same confrontational impact some of the acts musical idols once had. Perhaps more of the groups true character will show up in a full-length release.(3 stars)
Read the full Umbrella Bed - Refill review
Norine Braun - Conventus The Eye of the Heart
Many times Brauns songs sound better than they read because shes not a particularly poetic lyricist. She sings with such sincerity and passion, though, you can forgive her the occasional awkward phrase. The world needs musical artists that care this much about social issues.(3 stars)
Read the full Norine Braun - Conventus The Eye of the Heart review
Michael Cullen - Love Transmitter
Michael Cullen sounds much like a Goth singer throughout Love Transmitter. His voice is akin to Nick Caves, only not quite as bellowing-ly low. He also doesnt sing murder ballads, like the kind Cave is famous for. Instead of focusing on death lyrically, the way most Goth performers do(3 stars)
Read the full Michael Cullen - Love Transmitter review
Josh Matthews - A Sides
Josh Matthews performs quite primitive solo acoustic music. This 16-track album is ironically titled A Sides, even though its difficult to imagine any successful mainstream pop artist calling any of these his/her A sides.(2 stars)
Read the full Josh Matthews - A Sides review
Stone Temple Pilots With Chester Bennington - High Rise
Even if new Stone Temple Pilots vocalist, Chester Bennington, couldnt sing a lick, the bands fortunes would still be better with him than without. After all, former vocalist Scott Weiland spent about as much time in rehab and on the tabloid pages(3.5 stars)
Read the full Stone Temple Pilots With Chester Bennington - High Rise review
Ron Littlejohn & The Funk Embassy - Shining On
With the popularity of vintage soul singing, from the likes of Charles Bradley and Sharon Jones, it makes sense for Littlejohn to record an album that reminds you that 70s soul was, indeed, some mighty fine glory days, indeed.(4 stars)
Read the full Ron Littlejohn & The Funk Embassy - Shining On review
Keyser Soze - The Remedy
Some music is nearly guaranteed to make you feel good, even on a chilly October day. Such is true of Keyser Sozes The Remedy, a skillfully played reggae album. One factor that distinguishes Keyser Soze from many other reggae artists is a distinctly jazzy feel to some of their jams.(3 stars)
Read the full Keyser Soze - The Remedy review
Rick Webster - The Rick Webster Project
Much the way Steely Dan did it in the 70s, Rick Webster has found a way to blend jazz elements with pop music in such a way that it makes jazzy music so much more palatable - even for non-jazz fans. This also makes The Rick Webster Project one successful project.(4 stars)
Read the full Rick Webster - The Rick Webster Project review
Aurganic - Deviations
Its tough to put a finger on exactly what Aurganic sounds like. There are moments when the group is like a contemporary dance outfit; then there are sections, such as with Choices, which features Joel Goguen, where the act brings to mind quieter 90s alternative rock, like Toad The Wet Sprocket.(3 stars)
Read the full Aurganic - Deviations review
The Como Brothers - Baby Steps
When music is so breezy that artists dont even seem like theyre breaking a sweat, it just doesnt appear as though theyre working nearly hard enough for our respect. Baby Steps is good, but lets just hope they put a little more elbow grease into their next release.(2 stars)
Read the full The Como Brothers - Baby Steps review
MonaLisa Twins - When We're Together
This act has been compared to She & Him. But where She & Him finds a way to make the tried and true sound surprisingly new and relevant, MonaLisa Twins merely come off as just an okay approximation of pop musics glory days.(2 stars)
Read the full MonaLisa Twins - When We're Together review
The Boston Boys - Keep You Satisfied
Its difficult to remain unimpressed when listening to The Boston Boys Keep You Satisfied project. Theres so much variety and such inspired playing throughout, youre left wondering if theres anything these young men from Boston, Massachusetts cant do.(3 stars)
Read the full The Boston Boys - Keep You Satisfied review
Dog Society - Emerge
Conventional wisdom suggests that follow-up albums usually pale in comparison to an artists first recorded effort. However, Dog Societys story does not follow the conventional music business model at all. They say every dog gets its day. In this instance, one particular dog gets two days.(4 stars)
Read the full Dog Society - Emerge review
Joe Blessett - Changing Everything
These days, jazz takes on a multitude of different faces, and almost everybody has a kind of mutually exclusive definition of the style. Joe Blessett, with his Changing Everything, finds a way to embrace many seemingly mutually exclusives jazz definitions, yet somehow make them fit together rather nicely.(4 stars)
Read the full Joe Blessett - Changing Everything review
Beijing - Night
Beijings music, like the city it was likely named after, is a bit enigmatic. Unlike one of Chinas greatest exports, Chinese food, Beijing music is a meal that satisfies and will not leave you feeling hungry only an hour later.(3 stars)
Read the full Beijing - Night review
The Gabriel Construct - Interior City
Riccio uses a wide range of musical styles to tell this serious story, from classical, to progressive rock, to jazz, to metal. Needless to say, this is not any sort of background music. Instead, its the kind of project that requires concentration and repeated listening.(3 stars)
Read the full The Gabriel Construct - Interior City review
Jason Bonthron - Cyclops
Jason Bonthrons music is wildly eclectic, so if youre expecting a predictable journey while listening to Cyclops, youve got another thing coming. Cyclops was a famous mythical one-eyed creature. But youll need both eyes open and each ear tuned in closely to catch everything on this album. (3 stars)
Read the full Jason Bonthron - Cyclops review
Lee Koch - Whole Heart
Lee Koch is a name you may recognize from his recent appearance on the NBC singing contest show, The Voice, for a version of Like a Rolling Stone. Whole Heart is a full album of Kochs music, and its one release impossible to describe with just one word. (3 stars)
Read the full Lee Koch - Whole Heart review
Monks Of Mellowah - Ghost Stories EP
The Monks Of Mellowahs new Ghost Stories EP finds the group reaching for an unusual sonic juxtaposition. The title track begins by sounding like Bruno Mars-esque soul music, before ending with a guitar part worthy of Music.(4 stars)
Read the full Monks Of Mellowah - Ghost Stories EP review
The Tomas Doncker Band - Howlin' Wolf EP
The initial reaction to The Tomas Doncker Bands Howlin Wolf EP is the audacity of it! After all, it takes a boatload of gall to try and take on a set of songs first made famous be the most distinctive voice in Chicago blues history.(4 stars)
Read the full The Tomas Doncker Band - Howlin' Wolf EP review
Liquid Casing - A Separate|Divide
A Separate|Divide is an album filled with noisy, angry rock & roll that has clearly taken a few queues from Miles Davis spacey Bitches Brew jazz-rock explorations. This album may not always be pretty, but neither is the truth. This is confrontational music that is well-played and sincere, and not to be ignored.(3 stars)
Read the full Liquid Casing - A Separate|Divide review
Dave Plaehn - Amos Got Soul
Its a little difficult to get a definitive read on Dave Plaehns music. On the one hand, his Amos Got Soul album can be raw, acoustic blues, as in Stranger Blues, yet pop-reggae, as exemplified by Doodle Li, which is colored with organ, horns and background vocals.(3 stars)
Read the full Dave Plaehn - Amos Got Soul review
Joshua Warden - Always This
Musically, Wardens vocalizations are always gentle and easy on the ears. Theyre rooted in R&B, but certainly not churchy soul or Saturday night funk. Warden sings with a smooth, sexy voice that sounds best when the world is darker and quieter after midnight.(4 stars)
Read the full Joshua Warden - Always This review
JoyFocus - Love Song Cliche
This JoyFocus track is but a small taste of what the act can do, and leaves the listener wanting more. Intelligence, such as the sort expressed in this song, suggests there must be a whole lot more smarts where that came from.(3 stars)
Read the full JoyFocus - Love Song Cliche review
Johan Rodrigues - Um
Singer/songwriter Johan Rodrigues is originally from Stockholm, Sweden, but he has also lived for a time in Portugal, his fathers birthplace. He calls his album Um an interpretation of pop music. This is no mere approximation of the form, however.(3.5 stars)
Read the full Johan Rodrigues - Um review
Dzierzynski Bitz - I II III
Western ears might have a little trouble getting a handle on Dzierzynski Bitzs music because its a likely a combination of elements most have never experienced before. Its described as a combination of Polish pre-war music and English new wave.(3 stars)
Read the full Dzierzynski Bitz - I II III review
My Woshin Mashin - Evil Must Die
For American ears, My Woshin Mashins music has an international, exotic feel that is irresistible. The members of this act are from Russia and Germany, and although the lyrics are in English, these sounds retain a distinctive Euro dance vibe.(3 stars)
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Two Chapels - Free You
Free You by Two Chapels is a dance track that is also slightly on the druggy side. Comprised of Jenn Grossman (who does the singing) and Marc Wilhite, this NYC pair met while graduate students at New York University.(3 stars)
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Slim Loris - Future Echoes and Past Replays
Slim Loris draws heavily upon country and folk roots, but its mainly the older, sadder variety of that storied genre, and not so much the newer, party hearty contemporary country stuff.(3 stars)
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The Black Clouds - Better Days
Yes, The Black Clouds sound a little too much like Nirvana, so lets get the obvious out of the way, quick. With that said, though, is that truth such a bad thing? After all, Nirvana is arguably the best American band of the modern era.(3 stars)
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Doug Prescott - Blues in the Key of Sea
Doug Prescott is a jack of many musical trades. Usually, that phrase is followed by, but master of none. However, it would be a disservice to suggest Prescott is not a true musical master, however, because almost any style he touches, he gets right.(3 stars)
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Cojones - Bend to Transcend
Laying claim to international credentials is cool and all, but it would be little more than worthless boasting if the music wasnt also fantastic. This album rocks hard, and puts a lot of wimpy bands (are you reading this, Nickelback?) to shame. Therefore, for those that rock, namely Cojones, we salute you!(3.5 stars)
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Louise Aubrie - Time Honoured Alibi
If youre a Morrissey fan, this new Louise Aubrie album should get your immediate and close attention. Thats because Boz Boorer (Morrisseys guitarist, co-writer and musical right-hand man) produced it. Time Honoured Alibi makes Louise Aubrie an artist worth further investigation and consideration.(4 stars)
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Monks of Mellonwah - Sky and the Dark Night EP
This Sky And The Dark Night EP is much more ambitious than the acts Neurogenesis, where Monks of Mellonwah sounded a little too derivative of U2 in places, particularly the EPs chiming, echoing Edge-like guitar parts.(4 stars)
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Grown Up Avenger Stuff - Sparkleton
Its impossible to get around the point that singer Dierdre Kroener is the aural focal point on Grown Up Avenger Stuff tracks. This band has been positively compared to Yeah Yeah Yeahs and Grace Potter and the Nocturnals, and for good reason. Each has assertive lead singers that demand the listeners full attention.(3.5 stars)
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Dino Jag - Calling All Saints (SOS Haiti)
In stark contrast to his other dance floor concoctions, Call All Saints is a hymn-like cry for help. The songs subtitle, S.O.S. Haiti, is just what it says it is an emergency cry for help. It was inspired by the recent Haiti earthquake. (4 stars)
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Changing Modes - In Flight
The word that comes back again and again while listening to Changing Modes is art rock. Its as though the group is physically incapable of letting its hair down and getting loose. There is a sense of uptightness that prevents the music from taking flight.(2 stars)
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Circle Of Unexisted - Crossroads
Circle Of Unexisted is what The Cure might have sounded like, had Robert Smith been smitten by krautrock and much more industrial music. Instead of Smiths girlish whine, though, this Russian collective puts noisy percussion and clank-y melodic lines over their depressing grooves.(3 stars)
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Grant Lyle - So There
Grant Lyle is a Canadian blues singer thats got the whole blues performance deal down pat. So There is an album of slick blues songs. Lyle is doubly talented, though, as he can both sing and play guitar well. This is truly one professional offering.(3 stars)
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Primitive Evolution - The Prize
The Primitive in Primitive Evolution is a bit of a misnomer because this Canadian band is anything but primitive. The Prize is an album of slick, cosmopolitan rock & roll, instead. Singer Brett Carruthers sounds a bit like Ian Astbury on the rockers, albeit a little less rocking.(2 stars)
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Marla Mase - Speak [deluxe]
Sure, Marla Mase is a complicated woman. Yet even within all this complication is a relatively straightforward soul, with easy to comprehend ideals. So even though you may not peel away all the layers to the onion with this one album, you will still get a filling meal out of it.(3.5 stars)
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Virgins Family Band - Honeylion
Virgins Family Band is a diamond in the rough. Once they discover a distinct lyrical focus, they could really be dangerous. Until then, though, theyre a nice, pretty-sounding alternative pop act, without much of an individualistic identity.(2.5 stars)
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Grown Up Avenger Stuff - Alive
Grown Up Avenger Stuff gets compared to a lot of other girl-fronted bands, but theyre not really like any of them at least not completely. The band that comes to mind during Here, one of five tracks on the EP Alive, is Blondie, strangely enough.(4 stars)
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Tom Dyer - I Ain't Blue Anymore
Its tough to get away from Tom Waits comparisons when listening to Tom Dyers I Aint Blue Anymore album. Dyer has a similar approach to creating music, which is by making it noisy, sometimes off-key and always raw.(3 stars)
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Cats Park - Safety
This music will appeal to anyone that thinks the Cocteau Twins should rock a little more, or The Eurythmics ought to have been a little bit more ethereal. But whatever angle you come at it, youre likely to really dig it.(3 stars)
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Mutt's Company - Jump Ship
These songs are structured and thought out, featuring likeable hooks and skilled playing. This makes Mutts Company extremely good company.(4 stars)
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Time & Energy - Strange Kind of Focus
Time spent with Time & Energy is time and energy well spent because we all get tired of smooth perfectionism after a while. Smooth jazz is an oxymoron, and might just be the antichrist. That makes Time & Energys noisy pop music simply heavenly, in contrast.(4 stars)
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Joan Torres' All is Fused - Before
One of the funny things about jazz bassists albums is how they can seem to be in the background of the music, even on their own recordings. Such is sometimes the case with bass player Joan Torres and the group he leads, All Is Fused on their release Before.(3 stars)
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Cata9tales - A Chameleon's Dream
A Chameleons Dream opens with the track Kaboombox, which immediately brings Young MCs Bust a Move to mind. Sure, thats an old school reference; but hearkening back to the old school appears to be something Cata9tales, a Virginia hip-hop duo, is intentionally going for. (4 stars)
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Arc & Stones - Arc & Stones EP
Jeremy Griffith, the producer of this EP, has a lot of experience with hard rock outfits, like Underoath and Norma Jean, so you wouldnt initially consider him to be the best qualified man for such a roots-inspired effort. Nevertheless, he was easily up to the task. (3.5 stars)
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Chords of Truth - Reflections of Reality (Oraku Indie Remix)
Bono once famously sang how all he really needed was three chords and the truth. With the songs on Chords of Truth, perhaps this is all Garriotte needs, as well. The experiment with Garriottes songs and Orakus sounds is just that, an experiment. (2 stars)
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Scarlet Hollow - What If Never Was
Scarlet Hollows music falls into the progressive rock/metal genre, but what may be its most progressive element of all is the fact that the singer is a woman. Allison vonBuelow sings and writes lyrics to Scarlet Hollow songs, and also plays acoustic guitars and synths. (3.5 stars)
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Linkin Park - Living Things Preview
The first thing you notice when sampling the new Linkin Park album. Living Things, which was recently played for a lucky few at the groups favorite NRG studio in North Hollywood, is how little guitar there is on it
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Kasabian - Velociraptor!
Kasabian is one of those bands that may get lumped in with many other hyped British acts. The group cant help that. Even so, dont let all the hype keep you away from Velociraptor! This is the sort of album that ought to put Kasabian up into the rarified air of the very best British bands.(4 stars)
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Soki2u - Dancing through the Needle's Eye
With Dancing through the Needles Eye Soki2u has once again created a winning modern music smorgasbord. You may not salivate over every flavor, but its nearly guaranteed that you wont leave the dinner table hungry. (3.5 stars)
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This is not bad music, at least not in a Nickelback painful way. Its just not an album that will inspire you to play it again and again. At best, its merely a celebrity curiosity.(3 stars)
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Epicenter: Limp Bizkit, Staind, Five Finger Death Punch, Puddle Of Mudd and More
The Epicenter festival is an ever-evolving event. What started out as Linkin Park and friends became a two-day, eclectic weekend headlined by Eminem and KISS in 2010. This year -- staged at its third city in three years -- Epicenter came off like a live commercial for Guitar Center.
Read the full Epicenter: Limp Bizkit, Staind, Five Finger Death Punch, Puddle Of Mudd and More review
Warped Tour 2011
A Gene Simmons look-alike was standing there like the rest of us, only he had knee-high metallic boots by his side, as well as a Maybellene counters worth of makeup on his face. Kiss Guy looked out of place, even at an event where tattoos and body piercing was nearly a prerequisite.
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The Cars - Move Like This
Dont look for any heavy meaning in Cars songs because this group was always more of a sports car than a functional vehicle. Ah, but what flash! Whatever petered out toward the end of The Cars journey seems to have been regained once again in full(3 stars)
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Selena Gomez & The Scene - When The Sun Goes Down
As teen music goes, When The Sun Goes Down is pretty good. Hey, if nothing else, Gomez makes more mature music than her boy toy, Justin. (Annoyed parents please take note).(3 stars)
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Queen Week: A Day at the Races [2011 Remaster]
With A Day At The Races, Queen sure sounded like they were having a night at the opera - even more so than on the album titled A Night At The Opera. Its obvious the group learned their studio lessons well because this album sounds wonderful.
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Queen Week: Sheer Heart Attack [2011 Remaster]
Sheer Heart Attack is easily the best early Queen album. The band had not quite grown into its complicated vocal stage, but it had at least outgrown its 60s blues rock musical phase and fantasy literature lyrical stage. It also featured some absolutely wonderful songs.
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Queen Week: Queen II [2011 Remaster]
Its fun to look back on a bands formative years. However, Queen II is a lot like remembering a boys awkward middle school years... years best forgotten by all.
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Queen Week: Queen [2011 Remaster]
Listening to Queens debut album, after experiencing the groups matured latter work, is a little like placing an adults baby pictures next to his adult shots. Yes, you can see the resemblance; but its not quite them yet.
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Queen - A Night At The Opera [2011 Remaster]
Queen is a band that could very well have written and recorded a fairly respectable authentic opera album. This is an album with as many sharp twists and turns as a San Francisco street. All these years later, Queen remains the king of weird AOR rock.(3 stars)
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The Chemical Brothers - Hanna: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
The Chemical Brothers might have been too good a choice to soundtrack the film Hanna. As strange as such a statement may sound, it may actually be true. The Chemical Brothers are, at the end of the day, a song band.(3 stars)
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Sebadoh - Bakesale
Sebadohs Bakesale is considered one of their most accessible releases. This re-release album revisits a band that really should have made a bigger mark upon the 90s alternative rock scene. Maybe these musicians were just too unassuming to succeed.(3 stars)
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Supertramp - Breakfast in America [Deluxe Edition]
Extra cuts, like Downstream, sound especially fine to these ears today. Just take in how lightly Rick Davies tickles the ivories on it. Supertramp created a lot of classic pop music, and surprisingly, became rock stars in the process.(3 stars)
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Rise Against - Endgame
Those that dont completely get Endgame are probably not in the groups target audience. Even so, those that understand it may not like all of it. After all, there are only so many slogans one can ingest at any one sitting(3 stars)
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Thin Lizzy - Vagabonds of the Western World
Thin Lizzy is one of those great bands that sometimes overlooked when it comes to considering the best of the best. With this reissue, heres your chance to give the group the attention they so rightfully deserve.(3 stars)
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Procol Harum - Procol's Ninth
Procol Harums Procols Ninth is a very different album for those unfamiliar with this acts full catalogue. Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, 2 famous rock and soul songwriters, produced the album, and it shows.(3 stars)
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Procol Harum - Something Magic
You hate to see your favorite musicians when theyre not at the top of their game. Its a little like watching Brett Favre carry on a year after he should have retired. Something Magic is simply not very tricky. Its easy to sack.(2 stars)
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Procol Harum - Exotic Birds and Fruit
There are many delightful songs on this Procol Harum album. It may not include the big hit on it, but that shouldnt keep you away from it. This was such a classy band. The writers gave us timeless songs, too. These dont at all sound like period pieces, either(3 stars)
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A Day To Remember - What Separates Me From You
A Day To Remember has given us What Separates Me From You, which is an album to forget. If A Day To Remember created more innovative music, they might have caught a break from this reviewer. But these are worrisome ideals, expressed through noisy and annoying music.(2 stars)
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Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers - Damn the Torpedoes (Deluxe Version)
Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers have just released an expanded version of what is arguably the groups best album: Damn the Torpedoes which finds band reaching the exact right balance between its love of 60s guitar rock, and an unquestionably modern lyrical sensibility.(4.5 stars)
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The Who - Live at Leeds: Super Deluxe Edition
Listening to Live at Leeds is akin to drinking something sweet and tasty, after swallowing the Super Bowl performances bitter pill. This is a disc to pick up, enjoy, and pass on. Play it for the younger generation, which may not know what it feels like to experience The Who in all its glory.(5 stars)
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Procol Harum - Grand Hotel (Reissue)
Both Elton John and Bernie Taupin are quoted as being fans of the band in the liner notes, and its obvious why these two smart songwriter contemporaries would dig the equally intelligent Procol Harum.(3.5 stars)
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Paul McCartney & Wings - Band on the Run Remastered
Some have suggested that McCartney created this album to prove to his critics that he could make great music - even as a solo artist. And he easily succeeded, even if such was the case. Band on the Run reveals the freshly ex-Beatle at the top of his game.(4 stars)
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King's X - Live In London
A few songs into CD one (of this two-CD set) Doug Pinnick announces that London is his favorite place to play. And what follows is 18 songs worth of live Kings X goodness. Pinnick and friends make the listener feel like they are right there with the band.(4 stars)
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Seabird - Over The Hills And Everywhere: A Christmas EP
We might have assumed Seabird received the lyrics to seven popular Christmas songs having never first heard any of the melodies. Thats because every melody is different - thats seven out of seven(3.5 stars)
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Classic Albums: Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers - Damn the Torpedoes
This is not one of those VH1 Behind The Music episodes, so you wont see or hear anything lurid. But if you are head-over-heals in love with Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers perfected jangle rock sound, this is a must-see DVD.(5 stars)
Read the full Classic Albums: Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers - Damn the Torpedoes review
Ben Kenney - Burn the Tapes
Ben Kenneys, who plays bass for Incubus and once was a guitarist with The Roots, has just released his fourth solo album, Burn the Tapes. And while the playing is topnotch throughout, its tough to get emotionally attached to Kenneys songs.(2 stars)
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Ronnie Wood - I Feel Like Playing
Ronnie Wood has played with a few high profile bands over the years, including Faces and The Rolling Stones, yet he has never really created much of a profile for himself as a solo artist. Hopefully I Feel like Playing reverses that trend because it is an excellent new solo album. (4 stars)
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Gin Blossoms - No Chocolate Cake
Sometimes when bands age, whatever magic they had at the beginning begins to fade away. Not so with Gin Blossoms, however. Skip to nearly any of the 11 tracks on No Chocolate Cake, and it is pop music heaven, Hey Jealousy, all over again.(3.5 stars)
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Fran Healy - Wreckorder
As with Travis, Healys not the type of guy to ever bang you over the head with his songs. Instead, hed rather they sneak up on you. So if you have the patience, Wreckorder has its subtle rewards, little by little.(3 stars)
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The Villagers - Becoming a Jackal
OBriens un-approachability is what makes Becoming a Jackal a good rather than a great album. Like jackals and wolves, which you watch and respect at a distance, OBrien is a fascinating curiosity, instead of an embraceable treasure.(3 stars)
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Newsboys - Born Again
In a very real sense, Newsboys have been both spiritually and artistically born again with its newest album. This is because Born Again features Michael Tait, who was famously one-third of dc Talk not too long ago(3 stars)
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Hellyeah - Stampede
Unlike many lesser all-star musical configurations, Hellyeahs second project as a band sounds natural and unforced. With Stampede Hellyeah has successfully mixed undeniable talent with sometimes hard to come by chemistry.(3.5 stars)
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Avenged Sevenfold - Nightmare
The recent sudden death of Avenged Sevenfolds drummer, Jimmy The Rev Sullivan, hangs over the bands latest release like a dark cloud -- and this group already exists in some heavy darkness.(2 stars)
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Asia - Omega
Omega is a sharp piece of pop-rock, which pretty darn good for a quartet of rock veterans. And best of all, they dont come off cynical or jaded in the least. This disc falls short when these players put down their pop chops momentarily and try to rock out.(3 stars)
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Howard Jones - Ordinary Heroes
Listening to Howard Jones Ordinary Heroes brings to mind the Four Tops Its The Same Old Song. This is because, although the musical style has changed, Jones positive thinking pop approach remains fairly unchanged.(2.5 stars)
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Daryl Hall and John Oates - Do What You Want Be What You Are
Many skeptics look at Hall & Oates and view them derogatorily as little more than hit machines. But this song set reveals a couple of singer/songwriters that evolved from soul-loving Philadelphians, to smart and clever recording artists.(3.5 stars)
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Bad Lieutenant - Never Cry Another Tear
Bad Lieutenant, Bernard Sumners post-New Order band, is a pleasant surprise. Never Cry Another Tear was created by three guitarists (also including Phil Cunningham and Jake Evans), and it shows(4 stars)
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Leonard Cohen - Live At The Isle Of Wright
If youre a tortured soul or a musical historian, pick up this DVD/CD set and study it. But if you want to actually enjoy Leonard Cohen music, investigate some of his latter work, instead. That way, you may well live to tell the tale.(3 stars)
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Creedence Clearwater Revival - The Singles Collection
Its tough to say anything about CCR that hasnt already been said before. But these 30 tracks, all in one set, reveal what an amazingly creative and productive outfit this band truly was at their apex.(4 stars)
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