REVIEWS

CD and DVD reviews

Mark Gothard – Fly the Coop

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January 29, 2015
Mark Gothard – Fly the Coop

From Southern California comes Alternative Singer/Songwriter Mark Gothard who just released his latest 13 Track CD “Fly the Coop” in 2014. Many of you are already aware how fickle this industry is. Right from the start it might be easy to just categorize Gothard as some straight ahead old school folk-country-esque rocker toting a...
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David Britt – Country Flow

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January 27, 2015
David Britt – Country Flow

Dave Britt is a driven, passionate and charismatic singer-songwriter with a unique approach to his blend of folk, rock and pop. His country and Americana roots blend in with an uplifting modern songwriting sensibility; not unlike few. Following his experience as a member of The Rival Brothers, Dave set out to pursue a solo...
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Michael Tracy – Gonna’ Smile

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January 27, 2015
Michael Tracy – Gonna’ Smile

I’ve been listening to Michael Tracy for a few years now and I’ll tell you why, because he’s good, plain and simple. He really didn’t even know he had this all in him, not too long ago, and that helps all the more as an interesting back story to this Seattle native’s life, who...
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Jumpship Astronaut – Humans

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January 27, 2015
Jumpship Astronaut – Humans

Jumpship Astronaut’s “Humans” embodies the perfect mixture of rock and dance. Strong-willed the songs blast forward with great energy. Elements of their work are reminiscent of much of DFA’s immense catalog in particular the hyperactive work of Holy Ghost! Synthesizers sparkle with catchy melodies. Able to embrace their pop sensibilities these are pieces that...
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Df3 – “Tell Me”

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January 26, 2015
Df3 – “Tell Me”

Df3’s “Tell Me” embodies dance pop at its most optimistic. Akin to Röyksopp at his most ebullient the piece absolutely bubbles with well-crafted hooks and satisfying pieces. Singing through a series of filters the song tries to capture the emotion that transmits over such long distances. Clearly this is reflected in the song’s sound...
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Piqued Jacks – Climb Like Ivy Does

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January 26, 2015
Piqued Jacks – Climb Like Ivy Does

Piqued Jacks “Climb Like Ivy Does” is full of heart. Songs are full of Byzantine twists and turns. The sound is a rich tapestry merging elements of psychedelic, dream pop, classical, and even elements of post-rock. Vocals rip through the distortion to make themselves heard. Lots of textures are thrown together with a nice...
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Privet Earth

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January 26, 2015
Privet Earth

Born in Saint Petersburg, Russia, and raised in Vologda, a small city of a few hundred miles from Moscow, Ivan Smirnov was heavily influenced by American/British rock scene and started writing his own musical material in English at the age of 8. While studying classical piano for five years, Ivan also picked up interest...
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Dave Bailin & The Bailouts

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January 26, 2015
Dave Bailin & The Bailouts

How shall I sum up the sound of Dave Bailin & the Bailouts for you? How about kind of ground breaking? While actually sounding like he’s not so over produced like some of the more modern sounding artists out there like John Maher, Bailin manages to capture a sound that is old yet surprisingly...
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Ian C. Bouras

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January 26, 2015
Ian C. Bouras

DIY / Homemade guitar loop composer from New York, Ian C. Bouras just released his latest 6 Track release entitled: ”Two Sides to Every Sunset.” Ian produced, played guitar, bass, and mixed AñaVañA’s second release entitled “R*U*B” (2005), which was called: “Sophisticated and musically brilliant… a magnetic hybrid of music… a refreshing 2nd full...
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J. R. Holmes – The Truth

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January 22, 2015
J. R. Holmes – The Truth

J. R. Holmes is one of a select few musicians moving the R & B sound into the future. “The Truth” possesses a beautiful lush sound that elegantly displays J.R. Holmes’s classical and jazz training. He matches this training with dark electronics that help to set the shadowy atmosphere that comes to define the...
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Luke Jon Shearer – Close Your Eyes, Open Your Mind

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January 21, 2015
Luke Jon Shearer – Close Your Eyes, Open Your Mind

The great artists out there offer listeners something that can be awe-inspiring. This artist based out of Australia fits well into Sonic-Pop category with his 2015 release entitled “Atmospheric Disturbances.” Project consists of 1 primary core member: Luke Jon Shearer. This CD “Close Your Eyes, Open Your Mind” keeps on going and the passion...
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Glen Conway Naylor – A Paris August Moon

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January 21, 2015
Glen Conway Naylor – A Paris August Moon

“A Paris August Moon” reveals a warped jazz sensibility that recalls the best of Angelo Badalamenti’s work. With a night vibe to it there is a darkness that informs much of the song. From the vocals to the shadowy instruments things hide in the background. The song is full of love, the kind of...
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C-Rod – The Devil Is Real

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January 20, 2015
C-Rod – The Devil Is Real

First thing that hit me off C-Rod’s latest record, The Devil Is Real, was the incredible beats he had found throughout this mix. C-rod himself has a wicked flow…almost sounds like he would have fit in with the Onyx crew from back in the serious-rap heyday. After the intro drops, he launches into hard-tales...
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Arid Garden – Arid Garden

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January 20, 2015
Arid Garden – Arid Garden

Big fan of these five songs on this new EP from Arid Garden, let me say that right from the get-go. This is a highly ambitious band bringing a form of progressive jazz right to the top of my playlist right now. There’s a complete wealth of ideas within each song and within this...
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Megan Shanley – Ready for Love

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January 16, 2015
Megan Shanley – Ready for Love

Former winner of the Miss Virginia title, Meghan Shanley made the move from her home state of Virginia to Nashville to follow her musical passion. She achieved high acclaim once she got there with appearances at the venerable Ryman Auditorium and an appearance on Food Network performing her song “Here” at TV personality Paula...
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Liv Margaret – Spinning

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January 16, 2015
Liv Margaret – Spinning

Liv Margaret’s voice is clear and distinctive on “Spinning”. Full of peppy energy “Spinning” virtually bursts at the seams. The giddy sensibility of the songs is obvious. Additionally the arrangements flow perfectly with Liv Margaret’s strong voice at the center. By focusing on a bouncy pop sensibility the songs work together to create a...
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Amarachi – All or Nothing

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January 15, 2015
Amarachi – All or Nothing

Stocked full of hooks and a jovial playing style that never lets its guard down, to melodies which linger long after the playing has passed. From the fringes of New York comes Amarachi with her latest EP release entitled “All or Nothing” This stunning collection provides 6 tantalizing tracks with unique melodies that soak...
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Saints Eleven – I Told You

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January 14, 2015
Saints Eleven – I Told You

Well…if there’s definitely one thing I can tell you, it’s that the album you’re about to hear about from Saints Eleven is so true to the rock-country music genre – the REAL one, not the modern-pop version; so genuine and authentically played I can all but guarantee this would drive many of our rock-metal...
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Kari Tieger – Illumination

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January 13, 2015
Kari Tieger – Illumination

Kari Tieger is a Singer/Songwriter and Composer who writes and performs in both English and French, about love, spiritual growth and relationships. Her compositions traverse seamlessly from the realms of dramatic vampire love lore and songs full of hope for the future, to Neoclassic chamber music and jazzy instrumentals. Kari’s music has also been...
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Joe DeVita – Liquid Slumber

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January 13, 2015
Joe DeVita – Liquid Slumber

It’s not too often you’ll find me speechless not quite knowing how to describe what I’m hearing…forgive me if I stumble a bit here in this review for Joe DeVita’s latest album, Liquid Slumber… It starts with beautiful, haunting guitar work that literally gave me chills. From there…it’s a series of interesting choices, some...
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Septimius The Great – “Who’s The Sexiest (Remix)”

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January 13, 2015
Septimius The Great – “Who’s The Sexiest (Remix)”

Septimius The Great adds an additional pulse of power on “Who’s The Sexiest”. By letting the song feel a little unhinged complete with nice electro touches Septimius The Great add a bit of wildness to the proceedings. Throughout the track the song at times feels like it simply wants to suddenly swell in power...
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The Grave Jinglers – Reign Of The West

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January 12, 2015
The Grave Jinglers – Reign Of The West

Hard not to appreciate good songwriting like this. Even though I’d probably consider this just outside of my ‘normal’ genres of choice, there’s a ton of reasons I found to crossover to The Grave Jinglers and give them some ear-time for their latest album Reign Of The West. An extremely rewarding choice; this blend...
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Seconds Before Landing – Seconds Before Landing 2

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January 9, 2015
Seconds Before Landing – Seconds Before Landing 2

Progressive music project Seconds Before Landing headed up by John Crispino seems to making all the right moves. Make no mistake about it: he’s becoming a household name around some Progressive Rock blogs I’ve been reading. This latest release entitled Seconds Before Landing 2 includes a few impressive names you may have heard before....
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Mind the Journey – Mind the Journey EP

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January 9, 2015
Mind the Journey – Mind the Journey EP

Mind the Journey explore the playful side of psychedelic music. With lyrics akin to Mayo Thompson at his most surreal and arrangements that recall Ariel Pink at his best, “Mind the Journey EP” is a truly wonderful journey. The collection works best when taken together for each piece comes together to create a unified...
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Absoloot – Banksters

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January 6, 2015
Absoloot – Banksters

This might be some of the most fun I’ve had in listening to social commentary coming back over the mic combined with the beats coming out of these speakers. I’m pretty much guaranteed to enjoy music that has a message buried in there somewhere, but rarely do the sounds that come along with it...
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Tony Levitas – Black Sky Blanket

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January 5, 2015
Tony Levitas – Black Sky Blanket

Tony Levitas is in a jovial mood throughout “Black Sky Blanket”. Playing the songs through a nostalgic filter the songs possess a keen sense of warmth. By keeping the pieces relatively low key Tony Levitas explores the quieter impulses in life. Day-dreamlike in tone the pieces are well-crafted pieces of art. Lyrically the songs...
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Bridgend – Directed by John Michael Williams

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January 5, 2015
Bridgend – Directed by John Michael Williams

Bridgend explores one community’s experience with what appears to be an ongoing tragic series of events. Incredibly tight-knit it has seen a large amount of media attention for the large percentage of individuals who took their own lives. While John Michael Williams explores some of the explanations for these events ultimately it is impossible...
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KING – Imperial Majesty (feat. The Band of the Hawk)

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January 5, 2015
KING – Imperial Majesty (feat. The Band of the Hawk)

“Imperial Majesty” is all about being smooth: smooth flows and smooth samples. KING has impeccable taste in how each song is arranged. As KING states in “Bulletproof Wallet”: It’s that smooth shit right here. The number of references thrown into the mix is incredible. Kaleidoscopic at times it is an incredible assortment showing off...
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Victoria Blythe – Silver Flyer

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January 5, 2015
Victoria Blythe – Silver Flyer

Joni Mitchell meets Nora Jones–stunning voice, dazzling guitar, brilliant originals and innovatively interpreted covers. “Absolutely amazing voice, pitch strong and with a wonderful delivery” Niklas Hansson, Universal Music Scout. Victoria Blythe has been performing for many years in the SF Bay Area and beyond as vocalist, songwriter and co-leader of the award-winning Americana band...
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Molly Roth – “Believe Me”

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December 31, 2014
Molly Roth – “Believe Me”

When naysayers question if new artists have the same depth and talent as our longstanding pop icons, Molly Roth is the answer. This North Carolina native, a classically trained and seasoned performer, will startle all but the most jaded with her track “Believe Me”. Molly Roth is a modern throwback of colossal proportions. A...
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Go Time

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December 31, 2014
Go Time

One of the greatest things a music-lover can experiences is the discovery of a new artist so exciting, so invigorating it makes the listener want to “really” write about it. Though I don’t write reviews under false pretenses I will admit many times I find myself writing reviews based on music that is to...
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Strange Anthem – EP Volume 1

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December 30, 2014
Strange Anthem – EP Volume 1

Strange Anthem’s “EP Volume 1” has the full-bodied feel of J. G. Thirlwell’s best work. Flawlessly transitioning from full-on rock to industrial-dance landscapes, Strange Anthem packs a lot of detail into these three songs. Infinitely catchy they worm themselves deep into the mind. Lyrically the songs take on a cryptic vibe which matches the...
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Assaf Kehati – Naked

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December 29, 2014
Assaf Kehati – Naked

This CD “Naked” is the latest release from Boston based Jazz Guitarist and his trio. As a leader, Mr. Kehati has recorded three CDs that have received numerous rave reviews – A View From My Window (2010) and Flowers and Other Stories (2011) and his latest album, Naked (2014). This latest 9 Track work...
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Dr Wippit – For Everyone

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December 29, 2014
Dr Wippit – For Everyone

“For Everyone” is full of raw grit and true energy. Dr Wippit uses a funky sensibility throughout the songs. By letting the rhythm serve as the focal point of the songs he is able to incorporate other elements into the song: from a low-key psychedelic tinge to a dreamy vocal delivery. The combination of...
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Patrick James Clark – Letters To Beatrice

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December 29, 2014
Patrick James Clark – Letters To Beatrice

Alright…Patrick James Clark! You and I sir…we’ve got something to discuss before I get into reviewing your music sir…yep, that’s right mister, not another word from me about your excellent songwriting until we resolve this beef I’ve got with ya… You see my friend…it’s just that…well…when I push play on your latest EP, and...
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Crawl – Anticipate The Fall

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December 24, 2014
Crawl – Anticipate The Fall

This one’s tough. Crawl is an undeniably hard-hitting band from the Eastern side of Canada…wasn’t even kidding; most of these songs are tough as nails. Though they’re capable of incorporating a little melody into their music at any time, but for the majority, expect complete and utter chaos. From the moment “Rise” starts out...
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DF3 – “Tell Me”

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December 24, 2014
DF3 – “Tell Me”

Synth-pop band DF3 have just released their debut single into the world and it’s a hot one; “Tell Me” is a flawless production through and through, showing real promise for this 3 piece band for the future to come. With its slow and steady pulse and driving chorus, this song is both a throwback...
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Jet Force Gemini – Pistola Melodica

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December 24, 2014
Jet Force Gemini – Pistola Melodica

I can only imagine how I would have reacted to this album during my high-school years…this was right where I was at; high-energy music that pounded with a furious pulse, big hooks and bigger choruses. I still react well to this genre when I hear it done well like it is here with Jet...
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Morgan’s Road – Topics of Love

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December 24, 2014
Morgan’s Road – Topics of Love

5 Piece Rock Band “Morgan’s Road” has a new fusionist sound to me. This latest 15 Track epic release “Topics of Love” captures the energy and foundations of this new sound. This new style of music has hooky vocals, thumpy beats, crunchy guitar, and heavy bass lines that will make you dance, sing, and...
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KILL RITUAL NEW SINGLE “DROP DEAD GORGEOUS”

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December 23, 2014
KILL RITUAL NEW SINGLE “DROP DEAD GORGEOUS”

SF BAY AREA Thrash’N’Rollers KILL RITUAL have made the unreleased track “Drop Dead Gorgeous” available for free download and streaming on SoundCloud and ReverbNation. The song comes off their 2014 release ‘The Eyes Of Medusa‘ as a thank you to all the fans that have supported the band the last few years. The song...
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