Sunday, April 23, 2017
Cranford Hollow - Color / Sound / Renew / Revive (2017) Independent
Produced by John Cranford / Preston Havill
Tracks : 1.Songfield 2.Long shadows 3.Bury it down 4.Noise 5.And your, Brutis 6.North 7.Dark turns 8.Swing
3 out of 5
Feel like taking a long ride in the car? Well then, here´s some perfect music for the road trip.
The South Carolina based Cranford Hollow call their music lowcountry stomp, they´ve got quite a unique sound that I would like to call chill rock.
Their 5th album "Color/Sound/Renew/Revive" invites the listener to a smorgasbord of southern rock, blues, Americana and even celtic sounds.
The band is fronted by John Cranford - Lead Vocals/Keyboards/Guitar and he is joined by Phillip Sermans - Bass, Randy Rockalotta - Drums, Eric Reid - Fiddle, Yannie Reynecke - Lead Guitar.
I think they´ve done a good album where my personal faves are the Zucchero-like "And Your, Brutis" and the instrumental "Dark turns" that sounds like a laid back tune by Kansas.
For fans of The Allman Brothers, Nils Lofgren, Joe Cocker
Saturday, April 22, 2017
Donoma - Falling Forward (2017) Independent
Produced by Mike Hoffman
Tracks : 1.Sick 2.Jack in the box 3.Memory 4.A change is gonna come 5.He loves me not 6.Deep beneath the woods 7.Another light 8.Splinter 9.Unfortunate one 10.A new shed of colors 11.Otherside 12.Come with me
2,5 out of 5
Donoma (pronounced Do-no-ma) is native American Omaha origin and means "sight of the sun" and is generally used as a girl´s name, but it´s also a rock band from Wisconsin, formed in 2008.
There is also a pop band from Marseille, France with the same name but let´s not confuse things.
"Falling forward" is the second release from this female fronted rock band that consists of Stephanie Vogt - Lead Vocals, Israel Alpizar - Drums, Nick Campolo - Violin, Shelle Mounce - Bass and Timmy King - Guitars.
So what do they sound like? Well, imagine a punk-ish version of Jefferson Airplane mixed with the 90´s rock of 4 Non Blondes if they were the backing band in Rocky Horror Picture Show, and you´ll get Donoma´s new album "Falling forward".
There are songs that will take you back to Woodstock in 1969 and the voice of Janis Joplin, while other songs belong in a sweaty punk rock club in London, 1977.
I can´t say that I´m a fan of the entire album but I do like some of the songs like "Memory", "Sick" and "Come with me".
Chris Bartels - Myths and Mold (2017) Anthem Falls Music
Produced by Chris Bartels
Tracks : 1.Blind 2.Missoula 3.Stay 4.Myths and mold 5.Counting hands
3,5 out of 5
Minnesota based artist Chris Bartels makes music that will take you to places, just close your eyes and wander away. "Myths and Mold" is the second official release under his own name, the debut "Morning´s gold" came out in 2011 but this is the first time I hear his beautiful songs.
Chris Bartels has a number of different projects of multiple styles such as Bora York, Elskavon, Hi-Fi Cali and Vitamin June but let´s focus on "Myths and Mold".
This 5 track EP is like the seasons of the year, it has the playfulness of spring, the warmth of summer, the colors of spring and the dramatic weather of winter.
I like all 5 songs but there are 3 songs that has a special place in my heart, the opening track "Blind" that bring thoughts to Of Monsters and Men, the atmospheric "Missoula" that should please fans of Death Cab For Cutie and the brilliant "Counting hands" that would fit just fine on any Mew record.
So where´s the "like-button" on this page, I´d like to click it several times.
LANE CHANGE recently released an independent, self-titled debut album in 2015. They recently released a follow up EP, “RISE”. “RISE” is a 4 song work that strongly showcases each member of the band and their individual contribution to the unit. “We utilized more production on this effort in an attempt to produce a fuller sound, but while still keeping it as live sounding as possible” admits Jake.
LANE CHANGE has performed nearly 200 shows for crowds of 50 to 10,000 people, and they have become one of the most in-demand and talked about acts in the Southwest United States. Audiences are not only buzzing about their musicianship and diversity, but also the energy and passion in which they deliver every performance. “No one ever leaves one of our shows without a feeling of W.T.F was that?” Cameron exclaimed. “We really believe that there is still a place in the industry for a kick butt rock and roll show with tasteful music and lyrics you can actually understand”.
The RISE EP is out now.
Tracklisting : 1.The rich get richer 2.Club 27 3.Floodwater 4.We won´t back down
Stream the EP at:
Thursday, April 20, 2017
Dru Cutler - Hometown (2017) Independent
Produced by Dru Cutler
Tracks : 1.Hometown 2.Infinite moons
3 out of 5
It´s hard to believe that Dru Cutler (Tampa, Florida) was a punkrocker in his youth when I listen to his new 2 track single "Hometown", the music on these two tracks is more heartland rock than punk, especially the title track that bring thoughts to Tom Petty.
It´s a good song but my favorite is the second track "Infinite moons" that sounds like it could´ve been featured on The Secret Life of Walter Mitty Soundtrack, it´s got the same atmosphere as "Heartbeats" by José Gonzalez (Junip). José wrote several songs for Ben Stiller´s 2013 film.
I really like the 60´s pop flavor in "Infinite moons" that puts me in a Spa mood, who needs yoga when you can listen to sensitive music like Dru Cutler´s meditative sounds?
Two good songs that leaves me wanting more.
Born Cages - Exit signs in a burning building (2017) Razor and Tie Records
Produced by Vlad Holiday
Tracks : 1.Champions 2.Ain´t gonna happen 3.Half asleep 4.Please be crazy 5.Suicide note in a pop song 6.Free fall 7.Could´ve done it better before
4 out of 5
The NYC based band Born Cages started out as a 4-piece but is reduced to a duo on the new EP "Exit signs in a burning building", but the main songwriters are still the leading force in Born Cages, namely Vlad Holiday - Vocals/Guitar and Matt Maroulakos - Bass/Keyboards.
Their debut album "I´m glad I´m not me" ended up on my top album list of 2015 so it´s only fair that I have high expectations on the new EP, Born Cages trademark is 80´s synthesizers in a modern package which they haven´t moved away from to my joy.
The 2016 single "Ain´t Gonna Happen" is included along with 6 brand new songs, "Ain´t gonna happen" is one of the highlights along with the opening track "Champions" that sounds like Imagine Dragons meets The Killers.
The song "Our revolution" that was featured on the Transformers Roll Out compilation (2016) isn´t included here but I don´t miss it since the rest of the songs are so good.
The guitar riff on "Free fall" reminds a bit of Michael Jackson´s Black and White but it´s only charming, I don´t think Michael Jackson would mind from his place above.
This is a great EP.
Wednesday, April 19, 2017
It´s been rather quiet around a new release from Snow Patrol since all the songs they had written for their 7th album in 2015 were scrapped. Snow Patrol´s latest album Fallen Empires came out in 2011 but it looks like a new album with new "mind-boggling" material will finally be out in 2017.
Heavy metal legends Accept will release their 15th album The Rise of Chaos on August 4th through Nuclear Blast Records.
Progrockers World Trade featuring Billy Sheerwood and Bruce Gowdy, returns with their first album since 1995, the new album is called Unify and will be out in July.
American hard rockers Mr.Big has a new album coming out this summer, it´s called Defying Gravity.
Last month, I decided to quit our band Blue Cow Kent for personal reasons. We are still friends and they will finish the upcoming album Even Stars Die without me.
In case you didn´t know, once in a while, I still write reviews for melodic.net and recently posted reviews of Dismissed - Heads Held High and Rex Smith box set Rock and Roll Dream 1976-1983.
Read them at:
Saturday, April 15, 2017
King Washington - Potential (2017) The End Records
Produced by King Washington
Tracks : 1.My reflection 2.Superman 3.Interval 4.Evelyn 5.Love be gone 6.Hey boy 7.Nowhere´s hard to find 8.I wouldn´t laugh about it 9.The other side 10.Be where you belong 11.The great disguise 12.Interlude 13.New meaning 14.Climb out the valley
4 out of 5
Listening to King Washington´s new album "Potential" gets me all nostalgic and in an instant, head down on memory lane to remember the days in the 70´s when I jumped on a bike to ride 20 km to the nearest record store, just to buy the latest LP´s.
Tell that to a kid these days, how many who are willing to spend 2 hours on a bike to see if there´s any new great music to lay your hands on.....I think you know the answer.
Los Angeles based King Washington has a sound that bring thoughts to 70´s California pop, progressive rock and folk rock, I just love their superb vocal harmonies.
The band is Tyson Kelly - Vocals/Guitar (son of songwriting legend Tom Kelly), George Krikes - Vocals/Guitar, Billy Lee - Vocals/Bass and David Contreras - Drums.
They debuted with the "Grenadine" EP in 2009, that was followed by the full length "The Gears" (2012), "The Overload" (2013) and in May, their 3rd full length "Potential" comes out which is an album with a huge amount of potential.
For fans of Jars of Clay, Julian Lennon, The Eagles.
Highlights : My Reflection, Superman, New meaning
Friday, April 14, 2017
The Maine - Lovely Little Lonely (2017) Eighty One Twenty Three Records
Produced by The Maine
POP / ROCK
Tracks : 1.Don´t come down 2.Bad behavior 3.Lovely 4.Black butterflies and Deja Vu 5.Taxi 6.Do you remember? 7.Little 8.The sound of reverie 9.Lost in nostalgia 10.I only wanna talk to you 11.Lonely 12.How do you feel?
3,5 out of 5
It´s no secret that the guys in The Maine has great taste in music since they´ve done covers of Def Leppard´s Pour Some Sugar On Me and New Radicals´ You Get What You Give in the past.
But one thing strikes me when I listen to their 6th album "Lovely Little Lonely", they must be fans of Third Eye Blind too because this album truly sounds a lot like 3EB´s first records which is really cool. I didn´t see that coming.
"Lovely Little Lonely" is an uplifting record that keeps me in a good mood several hours after I listened to it, there are plenty of great songs on their new album but the ones that I hold more dearly to my heart are "Bad behavior", "Don´t come down" and "How do you feel?".
"Black and white" from 2010 is still my favorite album with The Maine but "Lovely Little Lonely" is the second best.
Wednesday, April 12, 2017
Soldiers Of A Wrong War - Countdowns (2017) Independent
Produced by Soldiers Of A Wrong War
Tracks : 1.Deep impact 2.Hit me 3.Through this wall 4.We will never fall 5.Clocks 6.Broken bones 7.In our skin again 8.Yeah 9.Milestone 10.Out of time
3 out of 5
"Countdowns" is the second full length album from Italian modern rock band Soldiers of a Wrong War, but it´s the first time I get to hear this band and I´m quite pleased with it too.
SOAWW was formed in 2007 and released their debut "Lights and Karma" in 2011, followed by the EP "Slow" in 2014, if you feel like checking out their back catalogue.
They blend post-grunge, pop punk and hard rock with a solid result, I think "Countdowns" is a good record without any real killer tracks but I also can´t find any album fillers so that makes it even.
I can hear traces of Trapt, Foo Fighters and Simple Plan in their music where my favorite songs are "Clocks", the single "Yeah" and "Through this wall".
Try to pronounce their name when you´re drunk, that should be fun.
Monday, April 10, 2017
Their frontman Daniele Faccani says: "Alibi represent at 100% what we are today. Is most hard and best album we've ever made till we exist. Lyrics and music talk for us. This album talk about the way of live of the people in the 2.0 age. All the songs got different stories but with a concept that still under all the lines talking about how many people live they're life wearing a mask, living just for appear hiding who we really are, and sometimes with shame. The message we want to share with this album is this, leave the mask, don't like to ourselves and be ourselves".
Elyne is a post-hardcore band formed in Italy in January 2013. They released their first EP, “Syncretism” that year and toured Italy playing many venues. Elyne released their first Album “What Burns Inside” in September 2014. That CD was a hit, salling over 1200 copies throughout Europe. Following the Album release, Elyne toured Europe and shared the stage with many bands including Architechts, Destrage, Chelsea Grin, Being As An Ocean, Silverstein and many more. They have been very active on tour from 2014 to the present, playing over 120 concert events and music festivals.
Tracklisting : 1.O.B.E 2.Empty mirrors 3.Demons 4.From within 5.White light, black rain 6.Breathless 7.Broken faith 8.Wrong nature 9.Sick 10.Frames
Saturday, April 8, 2017
Here at Palace of Rock, we have a saying, if you think power pop is dead, think again!
Hello there, greetings from Sweden. Can you name three things that comes to mind when you are thinking of Sweden?
Paul-High seas adventure, Vikings, and beautiful people.
Are you taking a stand against bullying with your new video Burn it down?
Paul-Yes, being bullied by most of the people, and peers in my life growing up I'm finding more ,and more people that has had the same experiences. I have felt compelled to give us all a voice for a long time, and hopefully encourage those struggling today.
How come you got into music?
Paul-It was prevalent in my home because of my dad's love for it. Nirvana happened, and it changed everything for me. I didn't just want to listen to it, I wanted the emotional release of playing it, and recording it.
What was the first record you bought and really liked?
Paul-I want to say Pearl Jam Ten, but also, Superunknown from Soundgarden was a first as well.
I think you´ve got a cool bandname, it bring thoughts to the 2006 album The rise and fall of Butch Walker and The About Last Nights. Are you familiar with Butch Walker?
Paul-I am, I love him. His music, and songwriting is phenomenal, and he is a southern boy that blazed his own trail. As far as the band name similarity to one of his records? No, it was simply the "everyone write a band name as cool as Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers down!' That one won the vote.
Tell me about your upcoming debut EP Give Up The Ghost, when will it be out and is the music going in the same direction as the single?
Paul-It will be out May 1, 2017 on iTunes, and all major streaming services. I can say if you like "Burn It Down' you will love our EP "Give Up The Ghost" its got the same sense of urgency, and hopefulness, along with the guitar riffage, and energy we are getting known for.
There aren´t that many new artists in the power pop genre, are you the saviour of power pop?
Paul-I would never call myself a savior of anything, but I will say we at this moment stand out, and I love that.
With the streaming services taking over, what are your thoughts about the future of selling music?
Paul-The future of the industry is on hard times for sure, there are less opportunities for making a living based off the old model, but like anything that changes, I am hopeful new bands can still break out, and succeed at their craft without having to go on gameshows or a be in a sex tape.
Do you believe in ghosts?
Paul-The Ghost I refer to in the EP title "Give Up The Ghost' is talking about these spiritual Ghosts we all carry around from childhood trauma. At some point we have to give them up to something higher, and move forward stronger than ever.
You come from the state of Mississippi that has a fine tradition of great rock and roll bands like 3 Doors Down, Blind Melon, Saving Abel and even up and coming artists like The Electro-Lights, Bass Drum of Death and yourself.
What has the city of Hattiesburg meant to you as an artist?
Paul-It is where I cut my teeth in the clubs, and bars. I have some good friends there, and I am hopeful we can be a part of a big MS music scene one day because the talent there is just amazing.
Wednesday, April 5, 2017
Roshambo - Bombastica (2016) Not so bombastic but oh so emotional
Roshambo is another name for the game "rock-paper-scissors" but it´s also the name of an indie pop band from Karlskoga, Sweden, just 40km from where I live.
Their new 4 track EP "Bombastica" is so good that it hurts, I think it´s time to bring out the champagne and celebrate because how often do you get to hear such talented bands in your local area?!
With songs like "Dog eyes" and "High", they should be playing MTV awards and big festivals in England. Mark my words, this EP is the start of something big.
Swedish melancholy meets Chinese folkmusic in the irreristable "Home", why buy a ticket to Beijing when you can get there with Roshambo´s music.
All in all, here´s a new hope on the Swedish indie scene.
For fans of Franz Ferdinand, Arcade Fire, Interpol
(+) Everything about this band really.
(-) Only 4 tracks sucks, give me a full length album now.
Message From Sylvia - Message From Sylvia (2017) Perfect for active rock standards
In a politically correct world, let´s say sometime in a near future, music groups of 4 persons consists of 2 men and 2 women with a multicultural background to make politicians and journalists happy.
In a time like that, the art of music will be of secondary importance. Scary eh?
For me, the art of music comes before anything else and I don´t really care if the band consists of 4 white guys, 4 women, 4 jews, 4 black or 4 homosexuals.
In this day age, the art of music is worth fighting for so here´s a message from the band Message From Sylvia. They´re 4 guys doing what they love doing best, playing rock and roll that feels dangerous and therefore, has no place in a politically correct world, but definitely a place in our "not so perfect world".
The band is Matthew Nevitt (DoryDrive) - Lead Vocals and the Lopez-Smith brothers, Dane - Lead Guitar, Isaac - Bass and Zachary - Drums (all formerly of First Decree).
Their self-titled debut features the singles "Heart of war" and "Right here and now" and it´s produced by Sahaj Ticotin (Ra), especially the track "Heart of war" is reminiscent of Sahaj´s band Ra.
Otherwise, this strong album has more in common with bands like Breaking Benjamin and Nothing More. There are a lot of muscles in their riffs and the band let the adrenaline flow in their glowing performance throughout the entire album.
(+) The song Crystal Ball, that one is gigantic.
(-) Ok, I admit that they will hardly receive an award for being unique but it´s not a big deal.
Pete Lynch - Kill The Monster (2017) A monster of an album
Let me present a contender for my top album list of 2017, "Kill the monster" by Pete Lynch.
I can´t stop listening to this lovely album, imagine a blend of Aussie rock, Canadian prog and the thinking man´s pop and you´ll get "Kill the monster".
The first single "Till the rivers run dry" is a brilliant arena rock song, this song as well as other songs on the album reminds a bit of artists like Gowan, Matthew Good and Blue October.
The title track and "Where are you" are two other favorites from Pete Lynch´s second album that is mixed by Tim Palmer (Ozzy, Pearl Jam) so we´re not talking low-budget production here.
Any Hi-Fi nerd should be satisfied with the big sound of "Kill the monster", I especially like the warm sound of the drums.
Pete Lynch is joined by Markus Gartner - Guitars and Sascha Bem - Drums, there is also a guest performance from Simon Hinkler (The Mission) on the track "4140".
(+) Any artist that has toured with Nina Hagen has great taste in music and so has Pete Lynch.
(-) If only mainstream radio could skip playing mass-produced pop and instead put "Kill the monster" on the airwaves so people can find out that quality comes before quantity.