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CD Review: Angela Perley “4:30”

Singer-songwriter Angela Perley grew up in Central Ohio near Columbus. In the city of Hilliard, Perley started playing guitar while in her teens and was in her first band while still in high school. As she moved from one level of education to the next, music was always part of Perley’s life as she joined and created bands. Perley started truly making a name for herself when she was part of the band Angela Perley and the Howlin’ Moons. After putting out several EP’s of music, Angela Perley and the Howlin’ Moons released their first album Hey Kid in 2014. That band would release one more album (2016’s Homemade Visions) before Perley would decide to go on her own as a solo artist.

As a solo artist, Angela Perley draws upon the same type of musical blend that she had created while a part of the band Angela Perley and the Howlin’ Moons: Country, Indie, Rock, and Folk. This blend creates one form of Americana, shifting through the various musical influences from one song to the next. That shifting of genres is a large apart of the music contained within the debut solo release from Angela Perley called 4:30.

The album called 4:30 from Angela Perley begins with the title track of the release. “4:30” finds Perley creating a song about being home for a change and not being able to sleep. The track begins with a rather laidback Folk-inspired feel that brings to mind something from the Sixties music scene. When the track continues, that Folk feel is added to with some easy Rock and Roll influence. The track quickly morphs into an Indie Rock feel which continues until the track ends. With the track “4:30,” Angela Perley draws the listener in right from the start.

Angela Perley’s new release continues with the track “Let Go”. This track leaves the easy feel of the last track far behind. Instead of an easy Folk-Rock blend, this song finds Perley unleashing her inner rock star. While the first track was largely inspired by the likes of Joan Baez or Carole King, “Let Go” draws its inspiration from the likes of Suzi Quatro or Pat Benetar, putting the track somewhere between the Hard Rock of the Eighties and the early days of Alternative Rock. Anyone looking for a good Hard Rockin’ Rock and Roll song, “Let Go” with its strong electric guitars and driving pace to the music will easily satisfy that desire.

Perley continues her 4:30 album with the track “Back in Town”. As the musician had just finished a track with a strong Rock and Roll vibe to it, she continued that direction with another such track in “Back in Town”. Where the previous track falls somewhere between Alternative Rock and Hard Rock of the Eighties, this song takes Perley’s music into a stronger Seventies/Eighties Rock and Roll direction. Falling somewhere between Joan Jett and Lita Fold, “Back in Town” easily would have been right at home on the radio in the Eighties on Power Rock radio formats.

The feel of the music changes again with the next track called “He Rides High”. With this track, Angela Perley creates a more relaxed song with a style and pace of Classic Rock from the late Sixties/early Seventies. This track blends together Rock and Roll, Jazz and some Folk influence. Together, the musical influences of the track seem to recall some of the style of the band The Doors in their less psychedelic stages. On this track, Angela Perley’s voice also contains a similar vocal quality to that of Grace Slick of Jefferson Airplane or Christine McVie of Fleetwood Mac. While this is a new song, the track definitely contains a classic feel to it.

Staying in a rather laidback mood, the next track of “Don’t Look Back Mary” slows the pace of the music down. While “He Rides High” already contains a relaxed feel, with “Don’t Look Back Mary,” the slow pace of the music intensifies. Folk Rock and a hint of Country influence combine to create a track that appears to have a little pain in the lyrical content as the title character of Mary seems to have a hard time letting go of the past and moving on. The slow pace to the song and that lyrical content combine to create one of the most emotional tracks on the release.

After several slow-paced tracks, Angela Perley brings some of the energy back to her music on the track “Dangerous Love”. This track has a strong Pop-Rock feel to the music, creating a rather timeless feel to the music. The song brings to mind female Rock stars from the Eighties, such as Eighties-era Madonna or even The Bangles. In fact, you could imagine this track being played right after a track such as “If She Knew What She Wants” from Susanna Hoffs and the rest of the band. “Dangerous Love” is one of the most commercial tracks on the 4:30 album from Angela Perley.

“Walk With Me,” the final track of Angela Perley’s solo debut finds Perley bringing back a little of the Sixties flavor that had been found on the song “He Rides High”. Again, with this track, Perley seems to be drawing influence from Grace Slick and Jefferson Airplane. The wah-wah pedal near the end of the track adds a nice retro feel to the song. The retro feel to the Rock and Roll on this track adds a nice amount of energy to the end of the release, and brings the album called 4:30 to a close on an energetic note.

4:30 from Angela Perley is an album with many different angles as the singer-songwriter and musician draws inspiration from many different artists and eras. That ever-changing direction creates a release that may very well find a rather diverse audience.  

 

To experience some of the music from Angela Perley, check out the song “Let Go”. 

To hear the entire 4:30 release from Angela Perley, click on the album cover below: 

 

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CD Review: The Amplifier Heads “Loudah”

The Amplifier Heads is a Boston-based band consisting mainly of Sal Baglio. Sal Baglio is a singer-songwriter and guitarist who has spent over thirty years in the music industry creating straight-out Rock and Roll music. Most of that time has been spent with one band- The Stompers, a band that came together in the East Boston, Massachusetts area back in 1977. That band, strangely enough, is still out there performing the music that made them so popular all those years ago.

However, as far as The Stompers are concerned, the band mainly exists today as a tribute to the very music that they created way back when. What that means is that every so often, the band will get together to perform their music live onstage in a concert setting. But as far as new material is concerned, The Stompers have not created anything new, musically speaking, since their last release, 2009’s Stompilation, which combines music from every era of the band and puts it all in one place as a 21-track Best Of album.

While The Stompers have not produced any new music for an extended amount of time, the same, happily, cannot be said for singer-songwriter Sal Baglio. Even though The Stompers aren’t creating anything new, Baglio has created several solo albums of his own over the years. And then, there’s the new musical venture for Baglio; a band that takes Baglio’s style of songwriting and puts it out there in the form of a new project. That new project being called The Amplifier Heads.

The Amplifier Heads is a band consisting mainly of Sal Baglio as he provides vocals, guitar and bass to the tracks that make up the debut release called Loudah. Along with Baglio, producer Ducky Carlisle provides the drums for the project, and Jeff Keithline appears on bass for three of the tracks. For the rest of the instrumentation on the album, the music comes from several other musicians who add their talents to one or two tracks on the release each. Together as a whole, Sal Baglio and Company create an album under the moniker of The Amplifier Heads that makes use of different forms of Rock and Roll, staying solidly within a Classic Rock format.

The debut release of Loudah from The Amplifier Heads begins with the track “The Boy with the Amplifier Head”. In a time where we are trying to steer the youth of today away from bullying, “The Boy with the Amplifier Head” tells the tale of a kid who was picked on by everyone in his age group for being different. The track features a Rock and Roll sound that blends together some seventies-era music with just a little British Invasion influence thrown in. What results is a song that would fit right alongside music from the likes of Badfinger or maybe The Raspberries.

With the next track called “Beat Club,” Sal Baglio and Ducky Carlisle are joined on bass by Jeff Keithline. Together, the trio creates a Rock and Roll sound that sets the music in the middle of the seventies. The track feels like something that would have existed at the same time as Glam Rock. In fact, the main musical influence that seems to come through on the track is the influence of Marc Bolan and his band T. Rex. You could easily imagine “Beat Club” from The Amplifier Heads alongside a track like “20th Century Boy” from that band.

While the previous song of “Beat Club” brings to mind music from the likes of Marc Bolan and T. Rex, the next track called “Jaw Teaser” screams The Rolling Stones. One reason in particular for that is because Sal Baglio sings the words “Jaw Teaser” with the exact same delivery Mick Jagger uses when singing the words “Brown Sugar”. The track also seems to have a similar feel to the music that “Brown Sugar” has. Musically, there is some musical influence from the Stones as well, but that’s just because the track features a sound that keeps it squarely within the Rock and Roll music of the seventies. That Rolling Stones feel to the music even continues on the next track called “Starleen”. The song contains a straight-forward Rock and Roll feel to the music, with a bit of The Stones influence thrown in.

The Amplifier Heads featuring Sal Baglio is not just a band with a Classic Rock feel to the music. The band also seems to have a slight sense of humor when it comes to writing the lyrics to the songs; at least, that’s the way it seems with the track “Two-Headed Girl”. Because of the Glam Rock feel to the music once again, the track falls into the same basic musical time period as “Beat Club”. It is with the slightly humorous lyrics to the song that the listener finds Baglio describing a date with a woman with two heads (maybe a way of saying “split personality” without actually coming out and saying it?). The track once again would be perfectly fine being included within music from the seventies. And with the addition of a slight sense of humor, the track of “Two-Headed Girl” stands out from the rest of the album.

Loudah from The Amplifier Heads continues with the track “Big Wax Lips”. Just as “Two-Headed Girl” comes to an end, Sal Baglio and Duck Carlisle create yet another track with a sense of humor. Where the lyrics to “Two-Headed Girl” may suggest a split personality, the lyrics to “Big Wax Lips” contain many plays on words. While many may think the track is about different forms of candy, Baglio is not referring to that. Much of the Loudah release from The Amplifier Heads finds the music to be rather reminiscent of styles and bands from days gone by, mostly from around the time of the seventies. This places the music in the retro category. “Big Wax Lips” is also retro in feel; but for this track, Baglio and Carlisle create music reminiscent of the Akron, Ohio band The Black Keys.

Where most of the album features the playing and singing of Sal Baglio, the final track of the release called “Rock Candy” features the playing of drummer Paul Armstrong of the Syracuse band The Flashcubes, a band much like Baglio’s group The Stompers as they date back to the seventies like The Stompers do. In fact, the track “Rock Candy” is mainly Paul Armstrong hammering away rather impressively on the drumkit with musical accompaniment from Baglio. And much like the previous track, the song contains much than a slight reference to bands like The Black Keys. “Rock Candy” is very energetic as it brings the albums to a close and leaves the listener who is looking for real Rock and Roll rather satisfied.

In a musical world where much of the current bands and musicians today are creating music based within the Pop-Rock style of music heavy on the “pop,” it’s always refreshing to find a musician like Sal Baglio who takes his band The Amplifier Heads and creates real, honest Rock and Roll. Loudah from Boston’s The Amplifier Heads may just be the debut release for this outfit, but it’s a rather impressive debut. And with each track on the release being mainly below the three-minute mark, the album is very listener-friendly, as well as radio-friendly. For those looking for straight-out Rock and Roll with plenty of energy, look no further than Loudah from The Amplifier Heads.  

 

For a taste of the Rock and Roll music from Sal Baglio and his band called The Amplifier Heads, check out the first track from the Loudah release called “The Boy With the Amplifier Head”.

https://theamplifierheads.bandcamp.com/track/the-boy-with-the-amplifier-head

To check out the entire release of Loudah from The Amplifier Heads, click on the album cover below:  

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CD Review: Marc Lee Shannon “Walk This Road”

Marc Lee Shannon has spent more than thirty years in the music industry. A large part of that time was spent outside of the Northern Ohio area as Shannon once lived out in Los Angeles having moved out there at the age of 19 to attend college.  And while out that way, Shannon began playing with some of the biggest names in the industry.

Time passed and Marc Lee Shannon has now been living back in the Northern Ohio area for years. And just like when he was out West, Shannon can be found performing with some of the biggest names in this area. You can find Shannon onstage helping to shape the music of artists such as The Midlife Chryslers, as well as being part of Michael Stanley & The Resonators, as well as many other artists from the region.

Marc Lee Shannon released his first release of Any Ordinary Man, back in 2006. That album was produced by Local Hero (as well as multi-talented musical artist) Michael Stanley and was released digitally on Line Level Music. And now, Shannon is back with his latest release. The 2018 album from Marc Lee Shannon is entitled Walk This Road. And much like with Shannon’s time as a musician, this album was created with the help of some of the biggest and most well-known names in the Northern Ohio region. Among those who helped bring the album to life is Ryan Humbert, a singer-songwriter in his own right. Along with adding guitars and vocals, Humbert helped to produce the album.

Walk This Road begins with the song “Carousel”. This track features a strong bassline and strong electric guitars that combine to create a track with a Classic Rock feel to the music, with a slight Native American vibe running through the music itself. The lyrics deal with living your life and dealing with the ups and downs of life as you go around the sun, which may very well explain the title of “Carousel”. The track starts slow and somewhat low-key, but soon picks up. The track continues with a strong Blues/Rock blend that is very energetic. This strong Blues-Rock track from Marc Lee Shannon and the rest of the musicians gives the listener something strong right from the start.

The Blues/Rock blend from “Carousel” is replaced with a straight-out Rock and Roll musical approach on the second track of the album. The title track of the release finds Marc Lee Shannon and band creating a track that would have been right at home on the radio during the late eighties/early nineties. The music of the song “Walk This Road” finds the band creating some of the best straight-out Rock and Roll that has been produced in a long time.  Fans of Rock and Roll from the late eighties/early nineties will enjoy this track.

Marc Lee Shannon’s Walk This Road continues with the song entitled “Back Door to My Heart”. The track features a slow pace to the music and influences like Jimi Hendrix-influenced guitars in the early moments of the track and Tom Petty-influenced music in the later moments. The two influences come in spurts as they alternate throughout the track. These influences help to create a track that feels somewhat timeless in its musical approach. And the lyrics of the track are given some extra body as Bri & Jon Bryant add background vocals to the song, giving a slight Gospel Choir influence to the lyrics.

As the first few track of Walk This Road come with guitar-based musical approaches that feeling changes with the track “Count Me In” as it is the piano from Russell Flanagan that help give the track a much different musical direction than the previous songs. As Russell Flanagan handles the piano, the track’s piano part will easily remind some of Billy Joel. And when the background vocals from Emily Bates and producer Ryan Humbert join in, the track ends up feeling like a 1980’s anthem in the style of “We Are The World”. The lyrics for “Count Me In” even give off positive vibes of being there for someone.

With the song “Since You Been Around,” Marc Lee Shannon and band create a track that once again changes the direction of the music. With this track, the musicians all join together to create a track that features music and vocals that bring to mind those of singer-songwriter Randy Newman. In fact, the way the band and Shannon combine their talents, what results is a track that feels rather reminiscent of “You’ve Got a Friend In Me” from Newman. The main reasons for this being the piano from Russell Flanagan and the rather smoky vocals from Shannon.

The sound of the electric guitar returns for the track “All I Want”. Along with the electric guitar, Marc Lee Shannon and the rest of the musicians bring back the feel of Eighties Rock and Roll.  The music of the track brings to mind the style of one Bryan Adams and other artists from that time. “All I Want” from Marc Lee Shannon is guitar-driven and will instantly remind the listener of music from Top 40 radio from the eighties. When the instruments on this track combine about halfway through the song, they create a sound that will remind some of the E. Street Band… minus the sax from Clarence Clemons.

For the last track of the release, Marc Lee Shannon draws upon several different artists to help flavor his music. It is the likes of Harry Nillson who influences the music of the track “So Long My Friend” while Shannon calls upon an artist who is rather close to his heart to help with the lyrics to this track. By the lyrics and the vocal delivery on this track all but scream Michael Stanley, a singer-songwriter who was best known for the songs “My Town,” “Lover” and “He Can’t Love You,” three tracks that made their way onto the music charts back in the eighties. In fact, you can almost hear this track appearing on one of Stanley’s twenty-plus studio albums.  

Having released his latest album of Walk This Road  back in 2108, Marc Lee Shannon has continued writing music. Currently, the singer-songwriter is celebrating the release of his most current single entitled “Friends Like You”. The track features a strong acoustic guitar and an equally strong organ setting the tone for the track. Once the rest of the instruments join in, the track takes on a Pop-Rock feel that would fit in alongside bands like Goo Goo Dolls and/or The Gin Blossoms while also containing a slight Bruce Springsteen influence to the music and especially in the vocals on the track. Like a lot of the music created by Marc Lee Shannon, “Friends Like You” contains a musical delivery that is rather timeless. While the track would feel right at home on the radio today, “Friends Like You” would have fit in on radio during the eighties and/or the nineties without any problems. 

Whether on his latest album of Walk This Road or his latest single of “Friends Like You,” Marc Lee Shannon shows off not only his ability as a singer-songwriter, but also his ability as a musician. And with the help of the various musicians who helped bring the album to life, Marc Lee Shannon has created a release that has a very timeless feel to it. For those longing for music that contains a strong timeless feel to it, Marc Lee Shannon’s Walk This Road is the album for you. 

To check out the music from Marc Lee Shannon, check out the latest single from the singer-songwriter, “Friends Like You”:

To hear the entire album of Walk This Road from Marc Lee Shannon, click on the album cover below: 

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CD Review: The Lost Millions “Novellas Dantes”

While there are plenty of bands out there that follow the current trends in Rock/Alternative music, there are still those bands that draw inspiration from older musical genres. Austin, Texas is home to one of the bands that are creating new music that is inspired by Classic Rock as well as other older styles. The band in question is The Lost Millions.

The Lost Millions is a band that consists of: Matt Westfield on Vocals/Guitar, David Lines on Guitar, Scott Bettersworth on Drums, as well as Heath McBurnett on Bass. Together, this quartet of musicians combines elements of Classic Rock, Stoner Rock, Alternative Rock and other sounds to help shape the music that can be found on their two releases: 2017’s 101, along with the band’s recently recorded EP called Novellas Dantes.

Novellas Dantes from The Lost Millions begins with the track called “See the Light”. The track starts off with a strong bassline from Heath McBunett before the drums and guitars join in to create a track with a Classic Rock sound from the seventies. The track also seems to blend in some Stoner Rock influence into the music. The heavy nature of the track brings out that Stoner Rock influence. As the track begins, the band creates a minute-long jam that combines the Classic Rock and Stoner Rock approaches together. For those who like their Rock and Roll heavy, this is the perfect example of that. And while the track is heavy, it is also melodic as guitarists Matt Westfield and David Lines create a harmonic feel to the music. With the various musical elements that are contained within the track, “See the Light” kicks off the new release from The Lost Millions with lots of energy.

After the energetic feel of the song “See the Light,” The Lost Millions lightens things up with a track that features a slower, less intense feel with the track “My Street”. On this track, the band brings out a stronger Classic Rock approach to the music. The Classic Rock feel on the song brings to mind The Rolling Stones.  As a matter of fact, the song “My Street” could easily remind the listener of The Rolling Stones during the same time in which they produced the song “Miss You”. While the track “See the Light” from The Lost Millions is not a carbon copy of the track from The Rolling Stones, you can hear the inspiration from the legendary band’s influence in the music of The Lost Millions. The track features a playtime of over five minutes, giving the band the chance to jam out a bit. This gives the listener a good chance to hear the talent of the musicians who make up the group.

“Wisdom of the Mad Priest,” the third track off of the Novellas Dantes EP from The Lost Millions, starts with a strong guitar riff that could remind some of the playing of legendary guitar player Duane Eddy as it brings to mind the feel of Classic Rock/Oldies music. The Classic Rock riff is soon joined with a rather Bluesy feel to the music. The Classic Rock/Blues blend creates a base to the track that soon segues into a straight-out Rock and Roll track that feels as if it could have been created during the 1980s. While “Wisdom of the Mad Priest” does feel as if it came right out of the eighties, it is still one of the strongest and most listener-friendly songs of the five that make up the EP.

The Novellas Dantes EP continues with the track “Mad at the Sun”. With the song, The Lost Millions create a track that contains a sound that falls somewhere between the late eighties Rock and Roll and early Alternative Rock. There is elements of both of those styles of music in the song. The track starts off slow and light with an easy pace to the music as only the guitars create the moment. The harmonic playing of the guitars creates one of the prettier passages on the release before the rest of the band joins in to create that Rock and Roll/Alternative Rock blend. After the easy beginning to the track, the music builds and what results is a track that would fall into the Modern Rock genre. “Mad at the Sun” is one of the strongest tracks on the release.  

The Lost Millions slow things down on the final track of the EP entitled “Complicated”. And just like with the first song “See the Light,” the band starts things off with an instrumental passage that lasts for around one minute before the vocals from singer/guitarist Matt Westfield join the song. This track features a slight psychedelic feel to the music as well as a jam band like quality to it that comes from the easy, slow pace of the music. “Complicated” brings the EP to a close on an easy note.

Novellas Dantes from The Lost Millions is a five-track release that makes the listener wish for more. The five tracks show off the band’s different musical influences while creating a very entertaining release that goes by too quickly.

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For a taste of the Novellas Dantes release from The Lost Millions check out the band’s single “See the Light”. 

To hear the entire Novellas Dantes release from The Lost Millions, check out the band’s spotify account by clicking on the album cover below:

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CD Review: Divining Rod “Return to Crystal Cove”

Miyuki Furtado and Patrick Harmon are two musicians with rather different backgrounds. Miyuki Furtado had spent time creating some Alternative Rock with the band called The Rogers Sisters, while Patrick Harmon had a background in music that included a Rock and Roll band that created a style referred to as Psych-pop. Together, the duo took their similar styles of music and started creating music under the moniker of Divining Rod.

As Divining Rod, the duo of Miyuki Furtado and Patrick Harmon splits up the musical responsibilities. As the main singer-songwriter, Miyuki Furtado sings and plays the guitar, bass and drums for the duo. At the same time, Patrick Harmon helps to flesh out the music for the duo as he provides the lead guitar/acoustic guitar for each of the tracks that Divining Rod creates. The duo has currently been joined by Mike Malone, John Malone and Eric Kaye as well as others. While Divining Rod has released several singles since they came together as a unit, they are currently celebrating the release of a full length album that album is entitled Return to Crystal Cove   

The new album of Return to Crystal Cove from Divining Rod begins with the track “Hemlock Blues”. The track features a sound that is based around both the acoustic guitar and the electric guitar at the same time. The combination of the two different guitars creates a full sound that seems equally balanced right from the start. The resulting musical combination gives the listener a track that would have been right at home back in the seventies and ends up feeling like something that would have come from some of the more Folk-like musicians from that era. The track also contains a slightly psychedelic feel to that same musical combination while at the same time, containing a very driving feel to the music. Ultimately, because of the folk feel of the song along with the style of the lyrics in the song, the track of “Hemlock Blues” sounds like something from the supergroup Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young if they would have added a lot more energy to their music.

Divining Rod continues their album with the track “The Deepest Sun”. With this track, Miyuki Furtado and Patrick Harmon change the pace of the album by slowing the music down just a little. The track begins with the sound of picking on guitar strings that produce no music but do produce a strange percussive effect. That percussive effect feels very much like the ticking of the clock. Soon, a simple guitar part adds to that ticking effect to start the building of the music of the track. Eventually, what is produced is a track that feels much like something from the late sixties/early seventies. The Classic Rock feel to the music is mixed together with lyrics about seeing clearly.

The third song of the Return to Crystal Cove album is entitled “Love Come Tumbling”. Much like the track before it, “Love Come Tumbling” contains a slower pace than “Hemlock Blues”. In fact, the two tracks have much the same pacing to the music.  “Love Come Tumbling” features a style that is slightly retro in its nature as the duo creates a track that combines some elements of early Rock and Roll with more recent Indie Rock. The track begins with a rather simple guitar riff and an easy beat of the bass drum. The inclusion of the bass drum and the rest of the drum kit help to give the track that retro feel. The song moves along and includes an instrumental break that brings to mind songs from jam bands like The Grateful Dead. After a while, the vocals from Miyuki Furtado return to help bring the song to a close. The song of “Love Come Tumbling” feels both fresh and retro at the same time. 

With the track “Darling Down the Row,” Miyuki Furtado and Patrick Harmon create a track that contains a sound that feels right at home in today’s musical scene. The track’s Rock and Roll approach takes a generous amount of Rock and Roll flavor, adds some Country twang and some Folk flavor to create a song that is as much Rock and Roll as it is Americana. With its Americana feel, you can still imagine the track being played on today’s Top 40 or Modern Rock stations while also feeling as if it would have been right at home on radio formats in the seventies. Of course, the track has enough of a twang that it would also feel right at home on current Country formats.

The band returns to a more retro feel to their music on the song “Master/Servant Blues”. Much like the earlier track of “Hemlock Blues,” the duo brings back the feel of the music from Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young. The track’s music brings to mind the seventies flavor of the quartet. It also contains a lyrical content that screams the band’s style. Plus, when Furtado and Harmon harmonize on the track, the influence from the quartet is almost undeniable. “Master/Servant Blues” ends up being one of the strongest tracks on the Return to Crystal Cove album from Divining Rod.

The Return to Crystal Cove album continues with the track “The Silver Ship”. Like much of the album, this track has a very retro feel to it. The Lite Rock feel to the music takes the listener back in time to the seventies when lighter Rock and Roll fare was being produced. The easy pace and lighter style to the music on this track would have been perfect for the AM dial back then. The track would have been right at home in the midst of artists such as Steely Dan, Harry Chapin, or Loggins & Messina. In fact this track feels like it was influenced by the band America, putting the track right in the middle of the decade of the seventies, musically.

On the “title track” of the release, Divining Rod picks up the pace and the energy level to create one of the more energetic tracks of the release. “Crystal Cove” is one of the hardest rockin’ tracks of the release. The song contains a strong Rock and Roll guitar feel and a rather unusual time signature that brings to mind the style of the band Devo. With that type of influence, the track contains a sound that would have been right at home on Rock and Roll stations in the eighties.

Return to Crystal Cove, the full-length album from Divining Rod, finds Miyuki Furtado and Patrick Harmon creating tracks that contain many different styles and influences. The twelve-track release puts to good use the various influences the two musicians have picked up over the years. The resulting album changes from track to the next and never lets up.  

To check out the music from Divining Rod, check out the video to the song “The Silver Ship“. 

To find the band’s music on spotify, click on the record cover below:

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CD Review: All This Huxley “Home Stockholm”

When you take a group of musicians who can each play multiple instruments, you end up with a band that contains plenty of musical potential. This describes the situation with the band All This Huxley, a group that came together from both the Pennsylvania and New Jersey areas but who calls the Philadelphia area home. All This Huxley is Trevor Serine on Guitarist/Vocals, John Corcoran on Guitarist/Harmonica/Vocals, Josh Mayer on Percussion/Vocals, and Alex Marlys on Bass/Vocals.

The band of All This Huxley (a moniker that is rather apparently based upon the name of the English writer and philosopher Aldous Huxley) had its beginnings when John Corcoran and Trevor Serine met in college. When the duo was looking to create an entire band to help reshape the music they were creating together, Corcoran called upon Marlys and Mayer, two former classmates as well as bandmates of his to fill out the lineup. These four musicians take their various influences and then blend together musical styles such as Blues, Folk, Indie Rock and more. This blend can be found on the band’s 2017 self-titled album.

Just recently, All This Huxley completed work on their 2019 follow-up to their self-titled release. The newest EP from All This Huxley is entitled Home Stockholm.

Home Stockholm from All This Huxley begins with the “title track” of the release. “Stockholm” contains a strong Rock and Roll feel to the music. In fact, the track finds the band creating a track that feels as if it came from the nineties when Alternative Rock was just getting started as a music genre. The track’s music feels sort of like a combination of something from Tom Petty mixed with a rather laidback song from Warren Zevon.  

For the next track on All This Huxley’s new EP, the release continues with the track “Comrade II”. With this song, the band once again creates a track that feels as if it had come out of the nineties. What the song of “Comrade II” should remind the listener of if the time between the early nineties until the middle of the mid 00’s when MTV was busy creating their show called “Unplugged” with such bands as The Gin Blossoms, Alice In Chains, even Nirvana. The track of “Comrade II” from All This Huxley specifically brings to mind an acoustic feel from the band Soul Asylum.

All This Huxley’s new self-titled EP continues with the track called “Dunkirk”. While the previous track found the band creating a track with a basic unplugged approach to the music, “Dunkirk” finds the band once again creating a track with a slightly laidback approach to the music. This time, however, the band’s music if fully electrified. The song begins with a slow pace and an easy feel to the music. This is mainly how the track proceeds except for a short burst near the middle of the track when the band picks up the pace a little. And the band adds a little bit of energy with a stronger feel to the music near the middle of the track when a strong electric guitar solo occurs.

The Philadelphia-based band continues their newest release with the track “One of These Things” With this track the band creates a song that contains a strong Indie Rock feel to the music. Like the two previous tracks on the release, the music on “One of These Things” has an easy feel to the pace as the song seems to simply glide along. It is that easy approach to the music that truly brings out the Indie feel to the track. The song’s complete line of “One of These Things Is Not Like the Other” should jog the listener’s memory and remind them of something from their youths; especially if you grew up watching certain shows on PBS.     

For the final track of the band’s new EP, All This Huxley takes their music in a slightly different direction than the rest of the release. While the four earlier tracks contain some Alternative Rock influence, the song “Ring Buoy” takes the band’s music in a Classic Rock direction. The song “Ring Buoy” feels as if it would have fit right in with songs from the mid-to-late sixties. Some of the reasons for that would be the inclusion of the organ in the background of the track as well as the acoustic guitar on the track. Specifically, the music of the track along with the feel of the lyrics on the track brings to mind the style of a band like The Doors; although, the track does not have any psychedelic feel to the music.

For those who enjoyed the music of the nineties, this self-titled release from the Philadelphia band All This Huxley should fill your need for something new from that time period. And for those who weren’t around at that time, All This Huxley’s new self-titled EP is a quick five-song release that features strong songs from the very first track.

 

For more information, check out All This Huxley’s PR Firm, Whiplash Marketing & Whizkid Management. Click on the logo below to visit their site. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All This Huxley’s new self-titled EP is not yet released. The band will be putting the EP out a little later in the year. The album will be released in July 2019. All This Huxley is getting the word out on this EP a little earlier to drum up interest for when the EP is actually available. Keep watching the band’s Facebook page for complete information.

Until All This Huxley’s self-titled EP is released, check out the song “Comrade II” from the yet-to-be-released EP. 

 

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CD Review: C Wired “Angel Circuit Engaged”

Chuck Whyard has done a lot and has been a lot of things throughout his life. But right now, he has chosen to pursue a path of the entertainer. The singer-songwriter is currently creating his own music and to do so, he is using the stage name of C Wired, a moniker that plays on his own first initial and last name. C Wired has gathered together a group of talented individuals who help him bring his music to life. C Wired is joined by project producer Addison Smith (guitars, Moog synth), Andrew Renner (bass) and Daniel Kelly (percussion). With this group of musicians, the Cwiredband was created.

The ensemble called Cwiredband helps C Wired with music that incorporates musical styles such as Jazz, Blues, Country and others into a sound that is mainly Rock and Roll-based. And the lyrics that are found within each of the tracks on the release contain a deeper meaning to their lyrics than most artists today as C Wired explores subjects such as angels, expanding of ideas, freedom from guilt and other things. The result is a solid musical approach that can only be described as Progressive Rock. That Prog-Rock style can be found throughout the six tracks that make up the new EP from C Wired. That album is entitled Angel Circuit Engaged.

Angel Circuit Engaged from C Wired begins with the title track of the release. “Angel Circuit Engaged” begins with a straight-out Rock and Roll feel to the music that would have been right at home in the late seventies/early eighties. The four-minute track features a driving feel to the music like much of the Rock and Roll from the eighties. With this track, C Wired explores the concept of the afterlife. What happens when you die? Well, C Wired has his ideas. “Angel Circuit Engaged” starts off the release of the same name with something to make you think.

C Wired changes things up with the next track called “Botticelli Baby”. This track features some of the strongest guitar work of any of the tracks found on the EP. As you listen to the track, you can hear musical influences from the likes of Adrian Belew, Joe Satriani, or even Frank Zappa. The track’s guitar work comes from the producer of the release, Addison Smith. Smith’s work would make any or all of the previously mentioned artists proud. And Andrew Renner (bass) and Daniel Kelly (percussion) do their parts to make the track feel as strong as anything that has been produced by earlier Prog-Rock artists. The title, “Botticelli Baby,” is a reference to the Early Renaissance painter Sandro Botticelli and his style of painting where the full beauty of the female form is brought to life in his artwork.

Like a lot of Progressive Rock, Angel Circuit Engaged from C Wired contains songs that are shaped with the help of many different styles and influences. As you make your way through the six songs that make up the release, you’ll run into some Rock and Roll influence, some Jazz, and some heavier influences as well. While all of the tracks contain instrumentation that include the guitar, the third song of the album, “Climb the Mountain” also includes the sound of the organ. With the inclusion of the organ, the track takes on a style that feels heavily influenced by the likes of the band Deep Purple, but with a much heavier groove to the music. Breaking the six-minute mark, “Climb the Mountain” is the longest track of the release and truly lives up to the band’s Progressive Rock musical base.

On the track “Angels Are Not Afraid of the Dark,” the listener is treated to perhaps the best and strongest track of the six songs that make up the Angel Circuit Engaged release from C Wired. The track begins with the slowest pace of the songs that make up the EP. The guitar from Addison Smith begins the track. That guitar is then joined by a second guitar which helps to pump up the sound of the first guitar. When Bassist Andrew Renner and Drummer Daniel Kelly join in, the trio creates a track with a slightly slower pace to the music when compared to the earlier song. This, of course, does not mean that the track is any less powerful than what came before. It simply means the trio of musicians simply is creating a groove-like jam that fits into the Album Oriented Rock genre. The song features lyrics that deal with what might be coming in the future.

The Angel Circuit Engaged release from C Wired comes to an end with easily the most commercial track of the EP. Instead of featuring the Progressive Rock influence that was so prevalent in the earlier tracks on the release, the song “Little Sisters” features a Classic Rock approach that would have been right at home in the late sixties/early seventies. The band creates a straight-out Rock and Roll song that would have been right at home on AM radio as opposed to the FM stations that the remainder of the songs would have been featured on. The commercial feel of the music in “Little Sisters” ensures that there is something for every Rock and Roll lover out there.

Angel Circuit Engaged release from C Wired and the rest of the Cwiredband features some of the best Progressive Rock and/or Album Oriented Rock out there today. For those who are tired of the Pop-rock that is currently flooding the airwaves today, this release is just what you are looking for. 

To find all of the various links for C Wired including Amazon, Spotify and other sites, click HERE.

To hear some of the music from C Wired, check out the track “Little Sisters” 

 
For more information, check out C Wired’s PR Firm, Whiplash PR. Click on the logo below to visit their site.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
To check out the Angel Circuit Engaged release from C Wired, click on the album cover below: 

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CD Review: The Borstal Boys S/T

It is said that many local music scenes, no matter where you live, are made up of about twenty-five musicians or so who make up about seventy-five percent of the music scene. Meaning, if you go out to see a cover band, you are most likely going to run into one of these omnipresent musicians. Even some of the Original Music bands contained within a scene will contain some of these musicians. This is very much the case for the band called The Borstal Boys.

The Borstal Boys is an Original Rock and Roll band that has roots within the Pittsburgh area. Each of the musicians that help to make up the group has a long history within the Pittsburgh music scene. Consisting of: Rocky Lamonde (Bass), Patrick Norman (Electric and Acoustic Guitar), Joe Pelesky (Organ and Vocal), Darryl Thumm (Guitar), Scott Wilson (Drums), Vinny Q (Guitar) and Mark Ponsonby (Lead Vocal), The Borstal Boys have stood on stages with the likes of Bill Toms and Hard Rain, Rusted Root and many other bands. Together, the musicians take the years of experience to create a new band that draws from that long history.

Taking all of their various musical influences such as The Beatles, Bruce Springsteen, The Rolling Stones, The Faces and more The Borstal Boys created their first album. The band’s self-titled album was released in 2018.

The first track on the self-titled release from The Borstal Boys is the track “My Everything”. With this track, the band breaks into some good, old-fashioned Rock and Roll. In fact, what the sound will most likely remind the listener of is something from Bruce Springsteen. Moreover, the song has more than a little bit of influence from The Boss’ music from around the time of the Born to Run era. “My Everything” from The Borstal Boys has more than just a little influence from Springsteen’s song called “Tenth Avenue Freeze Out”.  The track also has some Bob Seger influence to it, as well.

For the next track, the band seems to add some newer influences to the mixture. The track “Marlene Jane” features Rock and Roll that feels as if it came from the eighties. While there is still a good amount of Classic Rock influence to the track, the song also features a little New Wave and/or Alternative influence to the track. The majority of the track seems to contain some influence from John Mellencamp as the guitar-driven track is reminiscent of Mellencamp’s stuff from the eighties. The keyboards in the background of the song, however, seem to contain a much more modern influence to them. Because of the combination of the two directions at one time, “Marlene Jane” is a track that would easily fit well next to songs from the like of the Goo Goo Dolls or Gin Blossoms. The track would be right at home on any Modern Rock or Hot A/C radio format.

With the track “Head Full of Ghosts,” The Borstal Boys take their music back in time once again. The track is firmly placed in the middle of Classic Rock. As you listen to the track, you can easily imagine Power Trios like Cream adding some influence to the music of the band. But there also feels as if there is some Frank Zappa and the Mother of Invention influence present in the music, especially in the guitar playing on the track. For fans of straight-out Rock and Roll looking for that style today, you can’t do better than “Head Full of Ghosts” from The Borstal Boys.

Bringing their music back to a more modern sound, The Borstal Boys create the track “Green Light”. The slower-paced track features a strong guitar feel to the music. The music on the track brings to mind the feel of the music that came from The Black Crowes back in the nineties. This track by The Borstal Boys would feel right at home being played right after a track like “She Talks to Angels”. And with a playtime that exceeds the four-minute mark, “Green Light” ends up being one of the longer tracks on the album, although you really wouldn’t notice as the track flows rather smoothly during that playtime.

And speaking of angels, the very next track on the seven-song release is actually called “Fallen Angel”. And just like with “Green Light,” “Fallen Angel” has a slower pace to the music. While the previous tracks on the self-titled release from The Borstal Boys do not contain any religious meanings, the song “Fallen Angel” is full of heavenly imagery in the lyrics. Plus, the inclusion of the organ on the track also adds a bit of flavor to the track as well.

The Borstal Boys bring their 2018 self-titled release to a close with the track “G-Spot Blues”. The final track on the release finds the band creating an all-instrumental track. And with the fact that the song contains the title it does and the music is quite Progressive in its style of Rock and Roll, the Frank Zappa references are sort of difficult to miss. The completely instrumental feel to the music on this track gives the listener a clear glimpse at the talent of each of the members of the band.

Where many bands and recording artists pay attention to only the newest rends in music, it is great to find those bands that still incorporate real Rock and Roll feeling into their sound. The Borstal Boys have created a strong seven-song release that stays fresh throughout as they create songs that make use of that Classic Rock style.  

 

For more information, check out the band’s record label The Vault Records

To hear the music of The Borstal Boys, check out their song “Head Full of Ghosts” 

To hear the entire self-titled album from The Borstal Boys, find the band on Spotify

To purchase a copy of the self-titled album of the The Borstal Boys, click on the album cover below: 

 

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CD Review: Stone Diamond “Don’t Believe What You Think”

Back when the band Stone Diamond first formed, the Rock and Roll ensemble was a trio consisting of: Cy on vocals/bass, Josh on vocals/guitar and The Tongue on drums. Today, the band has expanded to a quartet and now consists of: Cy on bass, Pete on drums, Marc on guitar/vocals and Zaki on guitars/backings. And while the band went from the trio setting to a band consisting of four members, not much has changed as far as talent is concerned. Just like before, the Rock and Roll music created by the band is strong and very listener-friendly.  

It was back in 2013 that Stone Diamond released their debut album entitled We Stole the Stars from the Black Night. That particular album was so strong and was such a breath of fresh air as far as Rock and Roll was concerned that it made quite an impression on those who were lucky enough to have been exposed to it. They would then go on to add the album Phoenix to their discography. Now, five years after the release of the original album, the ensemble (now a little larger than before) returns with their third album. That album is entitled Don’t Believe What You Think.

The first track off of the Don’t Believe What You Think release from Stone Diamond is the track “Amy Van Dango”. The track takes the listener straight back into the eighties. The song features a Rock and Roll feel to the music that blends a lot of Soul elements into the music. It also seems to feature a generous amount of Hall and Oates feel to the music and the lyrics. This track would fit right in with any song on Top 40 Radio back in the eighties. But that doesn’t mean that it would be out of place on today’s radio. With all of the retro artists out there like Bruno Mars creating tracks like “24k Magic” currently blowing up commercial radio, there is plenty of room out there for Stone Diamond’s “Amy Van Dango”. And with this track as the first single, the band has begun to promote the Don’t Believe What You Think release. Of course, the single version of the song is much shorter than the original seven minute-plus album track.  

Stone Diamond’s newest release continues with the track “The Art of Breaking Hearts”. The track begins with a guitar riff that is rather reminiscent of something from Jimi Hendrix; especially if you consider that the riff sounds as if it had been inspired by Hendrix’s song “The Wind Cries Mary”. That Hendrix-inspired riff soon blends into a slow-paced track that features an easy pace to the music. The relaxed feel to “The Art of Breaking Hearts” adds a bit of emotional feeling to the track’s lyrics about a relationship that has its ups and downs. As the listener makes their way through the track, they notice a strong Classic Rock vibe that revolves around that Hendrix-inspired musical approach. While the track contains more than just the Hendrix influence, it’s hard to ignore that influence in the track.

On the very next track, the band dramatically changes the direction of the Rock and Roll that they create. While the first two tracks contain a Classic Rock approach, the song “Mine” finds the band blending together two different eras of music. In fact, the opening riff on the bass will remind listeners of something reminiscent of the bassline from “Come as You Are” from Nirvana. But the track also contains a feel that brings images of music from the sixties. The lyrical feel to the track especially conjures up visions of that time period. The blending of the two elements create a track that feels as much out of place with any time period as it reminds people of two different eras. A rather strange blend of styles creates a track that ends up feeling as out of place with today’s music as it also feels as if it belongs with today’s music.

While the next track continues the Classic Rock feel of the music on Don’t Believe What You Think, the new release from Stone Diamond, the song “1000 Suns” takes the band’s music in a direction that would feel right at home on any Power Rock radio format. As a matter of fact, “1000 Suns” brings the band’s music into the eighties with a sound that blends influences from Aerosmith and other such Rock and Roll bands together to form a track that would have been right at home on any Power Rock radio format back during the eighties. The track alternates between a strong Power Rock feel and a more laidback approach that would be closer to a power ballad than anything else. But the strong guitar riff that brings to mind something from the likes of someone like Joe Perry from Aerosmith keeps the track from getting too laidback.

With the track entitled “No Sleep,” Stone Diamond adds a bit of Country Music twang to their sound. While there is still plenty of Classic Rock feeling to the music on “No Sleep,” the slight twang in the music gives the band’s song more Americana flair to it than the rest of the tracks on the album. With the inclusion of the twang in the music, “No Sleep” feels as if it would fit right in with Country Music radio formats just as easily as Classic Rock formats. The song ends up being a perfect crossover track.

Stone Diamond returns to more of a straight-out Rock and Roll approach to their music on the next track of “Let’s Go”. With this track, the band creates music that has a musical feel that could have come from any of the last four decades. The undeniably timeless feel of the music as well as the simple lyrical content of the track helps to create a song that feels very timeless.

Just as the track “No Sleep” stands out because of the inclusion of a slight Country Music twang in the track’s musical content, the final track on the release also stands out…for very much the same reason. The song “Misty Eyes” finds a band that creates songs with a strong Classic Rock direction changing that direction for a very different feel to their music. Instead of that Classic Rock/Power Rock vibe, “Misty Eyes” finds Stone Diamond creating a track with a Pop-Rock approach. Like much of the music that can be found on the Don’t Believe What You Think release, “Misty Eyes” contains a sound and feel that would fit right in with much of the music that was around during the eighties.

The Don’t Believe What You Think release from Stone Diamond is a solid release from beginning to end. And with the inclusion of many different elements and influences, the Classic Rock from the band changes from one track to the next. For those music lovers who enjoy Classic Rock, Stone Diamond creates a release that will surely be something you’d want to experience first and then add to your own music library.

To experience a little of the music from Stone Diamond, check out the band’s current single of “Amy Van Dango”. 

To check the newest album from Stone Diamond entitled Don’t Believe What You Think, click on the album cover below: 

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CD Review: White Buffalo Woman “Foolish Hearts”

White Buffalo Woman is a Rock and Roll band out of Northeast Ohio. The band creates their Rock and Roll sound by combining Soul and Blues together to create a rather timeless style. Together as a band, White Buffalo Woman has released several EPs and two albums throughout their time. The latest album from the band was released a little over a month ago. For the sake of their newest album, the band is comprised of Evan Rutledge on vocals, Adam Murphy on guitar, Devin Bezeredi on Guitar, Alex Leggett on Bass and Joe Wales on drums with help from Chris Leonardi on keys. The resulting new release from White Buffalo Woman is entitled Foolish Hearts.

The Foolish Hearts release from White Buffalo Woman begins with the track “Love Resolution”. The track’s musical blend features a Rock and Roll sound revolving around the sound of the electric guitar. The track features a strong Rock backbone but is also rather heavy on a Pop influence. The resulting sound of the track puts the band’s music somewhere in the range of the seventies with a strong retro feel that makes it seem even older than that. “Love Resolution” is a rather laidback track that allows the listener to get acquainted with the music from White Buffalo Woman before the band truly lets loose.

And speaking of letting loose, the album continues with the track “Cryin’ Shame,” a track that again features a retro feel to the music, creating a song that fits into the Classic Rock genre. Much like the song “Old Time Rock and Roll” from Bob Seger, “Cryin’ Shame” from White Buffalo Woman takes the musical feel from the first track and bumps the intensity of the music up a notch. The reason for the increase of the Classic Rock feel of the song comes from the inclusion of Chris Leonardi’s piano that helps add that Bob Seger influence to the song. The more retro feel to the music and the stronger energy of the track creates a track that would easily fit on any Classic Rock format.

As the release continues, White Buffalo Woman continues to keep the music of their new album in a Classic Rock vein. Nowhere is that more evident than on the track “Honey Love”. The music for the track feels very familiar to anyone who enjoys Classic Rock. That is because the track seems to be influenced by the likes of the Band Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. The guitar-driven track features a sound and style featuring a light twang that Petty’s music is famous for. “Honey Love” is strong enough and has of a fresh feel that the track could fit right in with today’s Modern Rock music while still carrying that Tom Petty influence.

Just like the previous tracks on the album, “Wasting My Time” contains a strong timeless feel to the music. But unlike the tracks that came before it, “Wasting My Time” finds the band taking the feel of the music back even further as the track contains a Rockabilly feel to the music that would fit in with early Rock and Roll from the likes of Buddy Holly and the Crickets. The resulting feel of the music could easily put this track into the Americana music genre.

The track “Do You Ever Think of Me” continues the band’s obsession with Classic Rock. The strong guitars on the track as well as the organ in the background combine to create a track that contains a straight-out Rock and Roll sound with plenty of energy to the music. The resulting feel of the track would once again place the music from White Buffalo Woman into the late sixties/early seventies. “Do You Ever Think of Me” is such a timeless song that it would easily fit on Classic Rock radio formats.

If any track on the Foolish Hearts album from White Buffalo Woman falls into the “timeless” category, it would have to be “Drowning in Love”. While that song title may conjure up visions of something rather soft and ballad-like, nothing could be further from the truth with this song. The music of “Drowning in Love” contains just as much Rock and Roll influence as “Honey Love” or “Cryin’ Shame” from earlier in the album. The strong guitars and the moderate tempo on the track help give the song a Classic Rock feel that brings to mind classic Rolling Stones tracks from the band’s early days.

As you listen to the Foolish Hearts album from Canton, Ohio’s White Buffalo Woman, you can find yourself thinking back to the classic eras of Rock and Roll when some of the best music from the genre was created. If you want an album that is based more on the Classic Rock days of Rock and Roll as opposed to the more recent music found on Pop/Rock radio formats of today, this release is just what you need to help fill out your music collection. Foolish Hearts from White Buffalo Woman is a solid Rock and Roll album that contains ten tracks of great Rock and Roll.

Click HERE for the video to the track “Love Resolution”.

To check out the Foolish Hearts album from White Buffalo Woman, click on the album cover below: