CD Review: Skunky Rooster “Buskers’ Blusterade”

Singer/guitarist Scott Rath and drummer Seth Pappas are two musicians that have very similar histories as far as their time in the music industry is concerned. After years of playing behind some of the biggest names in the business, both musicians figured they should create their own music. After finding each other, the two created the band Skunky Rooster. With the help of several other musicians to help flesh out the band’s sound (especially on bass), an album was created. That album is entitled Buskers’ Blusterade.

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CD Review: Bill Toms and Hard Rain “Deep in the Shadows”

Pittsburgh-based musician Bill Toms has been making a name for himself for a few years now. Once he went solo after spending a few years as guitarist with the band Joe Grushecky and the Houserockers, Toms created several albums with his own band called Hard Rain. Recently, Bill Toms and Hard Rain celebrated the release of their newest album, 2015’s Deep in the Shadows.

Deep in the Shadows from Bill Toms begins with a slow pace to the music as “I’ve Got No Use (For What You’re Selling Me)” finds Bill and Hard Rain creating a Soul music track with plenty of feeling. The song is the perfect tune to start off the newest release from Toms as the tune features the entire band, including the newly-added Soulville Horns. While the song includes the familiar Bill Toms sound that was present on the previous album of Memphis, it also features a feeling that will remind listeners of something that might have been on the radio back in the sixties. With the different musical flavors to it, the music of the track definitely has a timeless feel to it.

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CD Review: Lindsay Mac “Animal Again”

Lindsay Mac is a classically-trained cellist. After her training on that instrument, she took that ability and started creating her own music. And while it would have logical to imagine Mac creating albums based in classical music, she went in a different direction. The music Mac created was folk-rock based. With that folk-rock sound, Mac created a library of two releases that included 2008’s Stop Thinking. On that album, Lindsay Mac created such tracks as “Barbies & Broncos” that featured a very rocking musical approach while still incorporating a little of the folk flavor that she was known for. On the track, Mac’s cello added a lot of texture to the energy of the music. The album also contained a more laidback musical approach as Mac covered the Beatles tune “Blackbird” which featured more folk flavor to the music than the original version. While going from the rocking sound of “Barbies & Broncos” to the more folk-like “Blackbird,” other styles are also included on the release and Stop Thinking ended up being a very eclectic release.
That was back in 2008. Since then, Lindsay Mac had not put out an album. In-between that album and today, Lindsay Mac has been incorporating a new style into her sound; that sound falls into the category of Electronic Dance Music. To help bring the EDM sound to life, Mac called upon fellow Berklee College of Music grad J Declan. Together, the two musicians created Mac's newest release entitled Animal Again.

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CD Review: The Love Dimension “Create and Consume”

Formed in the Bay Area of San Francisco, the band called The Love Dimension seems to encompass the whole spirit of the 1960s and their music definitely shows that. The band creates a sound that includes many different genres of rock and roll including straight-out rock, psychedelic rock, surf rock, even a little garage rock. The band’s many different influences create a solid sound that borrows from many different sounds but still sounds very cohesive…and just a little dated as the band’s sound feels like it could have fit in with the bands that were around at the time of Woodstock and just a little bit after that, as well.

The Love Dimension is a band that consists of Jimmy Dias – vocals, guitar; Celeste Obomsawin – vocals, percussion; Devin Farney – vocals, keys; Sonny Pearce – drums, percussion; Tommy Anderson – bass as well as Kyle DeMartini. Having already released several albums worth of music and several standalone singles as well, The Love Dimension is currently promoting their newest release. The 2014 album from The Love Dimension is called Create and Consume.

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CD Review: Micah Olsan and the Many “All Around”

Micah Olsan is a Milwaukee-based singer-songwriter who creates music that has many different musical influences to it. And while that may be the case, those influences help to create a sound that is very solid and very listener-friendly. To bring his music to life, Micah Olsan is joined by four other musicians that seem to have the same creative drive to their playing ability. The resulting band creates a sound that is equal parts Folk, Blues, Soul and Rock. The band of Micah Olsan and the Many consists of: Micah Olsan- Vocals, Guitar; Cody Calderon- Drums; Adam Dosemagen- Bass; Dan Alexander- Keyboard; Eric Lemieux- Guitar. Together, this band has created a five-song EP called All Around.

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CD Review: The Bishop’s Daredevil Stunt Club “Veva, Hold On!”

The Bishop’s Daredevil Stunt Club is a band that makes their home in Chicago, Illinois. Made up of: Billy Giricz – vocals, guitar, keyboards; Paulette Bertrand – vocals, keyboards, guitar; Dan Passarelli – bass, vocals; Luke Smith – drums and Darin Gregg – guitar, trumpet, the band creates music that is equal parts rock and roll and pop-rock. That combination helps to create a sound that is very infectious and very radio-friendly at the same time. The style of the band’s songs alternates between modern-day rock and roll and rock and roll from years gone by. The band calls upon influences such as The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Norah Jones and Wilco and those influences creates a nice mixture of styles to draw from, making the band’s music very different from one track to the next. Having already adding to their musical library by releasing an 11-song self-titled release in August 2014, the band returned the very next month with another EP, the 7-track release entitled Veva, Hold On!

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CD Review: Bone Cave Ballet “Will of the Waves”

Because of the nature of Progressive Rock, you either like it or you don’t. Bands like Yes or Pater Gabriel-era Genesis fall into the “love ‘em or leave ‘em” category. Because of that, you rarely hear of bands from today that have made the plunge into the Progressive Rock genre.

One band that exists today that has decided to create Progressive Rock music is the Seattle-based group Bone Cave Ballet. The four-piece band consists of Jacqui Gilroy on guitar and vocals; Kelly Mynes on drums; Ezekiel Lords on bass and Jeff Blancato on guitar. Together, the members of Bone Cave Ballet create a band that has the talent, ability and creativity to handle the rhythm and tempo changes that come with playing Progressive Rock. To showcase the band’s style and playing ability, the band released a five-song EP entitled Will of the Waves.

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CD Review: Rocket 3 “Burn”

Portland-based band Rocket 3 is a three-piece rock outfit that features the playing of Guitarist, singer, and songwriter Ramune Nagisetty; Drummer Drew Anymouse and bassist Tony Guzman. Each of the three musicians found their way to Portland from different parts of the country only to discover each other in Portland and from there they put together a band that combines different genres of rock and roll to create their sound. Rocket 3 is currently promoting their current album entitled Burn.

Burn from Rocket 3 begins with the track “Fate”. The track is a strong rock track that adds a little bit of flavor from a band like the Ramones. The track also picks up a little New Wave Rock feel from a band like Blondie to create a track with a lot of depth as well as mass appeal.

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CD Review: The Armory “Rediscover”

Many of today’s rock bands that are out there selling out music venues are filling up those venues and radio airwaves with a pop-inspired style of rock and roll. This pop-based rock is mainly to ensure music sales. Along the way, that pop-based sound replaced the real rock and roll that was being created only fifteen years ago; but every once in a while, you will find a band that still brings the energy that many seem to have lost. One such band that still has that strong rock edge to their music is The Armory.

The Georgia-based band of The Armory is a five-piece musical outfit that is made up of vocalist/guitarist Sean Wheeler, vocalist/bassist Marc Harris, guitarist John Patton, guitarist Ricky Free and drummer Ben Harris. Together, these five musicians are currently creating music that blends together both modern-day rock and roll and rock and roll that contains more of a “pop” feel to it. That interesting mix of the two styles will help keep the radio listeners happy while also giving the fans of more aggressive rock and roll music something to enjoy. That musical mix can be found on the band’s 2014 album entitled Rediscover.

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CD Review: RetroFunk S/T

Every so often, you come across an album of music that contains nothing but cover versions of popular songs. Since each of the songs included is a cover version, what sets one of these albums apart from others of the same style of music is the talent of everyone that was brought together to bring the music to life. The better the playing and singing, the more enjoyable the album is. Plus, if the album comes with great arrangements and solid production quality on the songs, then you know you really have something worth checking out.

Under the watchful eyes of Executive Producer Fausto Guerrero and Project Manager (as well as singer) Sandra Perez, RetroFunk is a Mexico-based studio project that brings together talented recording and performing artists that have come together to create an album of music that is very solid. Part of the reason for that solid feeling is that some of the musicians that are part of the project are also responsible for arranging the music on the release. The album truly brings out the talent of all of the musicians involved.

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