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Monday, 20 March 2017

Alison Krauss - "Windy City", Released February 17th, 2017 via Capitol Records - ALBUM REVIEW



Alison Krauss - "Windy City"
Released February 17th, 2017 via Capitol Records

Blue Grass or mainstream country ain’t really a style I have bought in when it comes to music but when Dani K, our chief editor, mentioned to me it was an album of covers I almost choked. Now... never say never and rise to the challenge I told myself.

A few things were going to make this easy I told myself. Alison Krauss is well known vocalist and has a great voice check, musicians and production crew are always associated with high quality check, I can pass the more country sound like tunes check 😊.

Now surprise surprise! It turns out, thanks to Alison, that I now like Willie Nelson, who would have bet on that one!!! Beautiful piano intro, soft and aerial guitar and a bit of accordion... and I am now ready to wear cow boy boots when I listen to I Never cared For You.

River in the Rain from Roger Miller, which admittedly I never heard of (I know I know :-) ), is my second best preferred title on this record and I have found myself going back to this ballad on a regular basis. I seriously think I am going to buy a cow boy hat over the next few days.

Gentle on My Mind Pop intro originally sang by Glen Campbell, a retired country star, is the prelude to a soft and nice musical road trip to Arkansas and I am now contemplating purchasing a wild horse for the urban cowboy that I am slowly becoming.

I am told that Brenda Lee was the first artist singing All Alone Am I. I don’t know if it was one of her signature tunes, but it is a poignant song about loss that Alison has clearly made hers and this in the most superb fashion that an artist can do I must say.

You Don’t Know Me from Eddy Arnold concludes this 10-track cover album Called "Windy City", not an album that I thought I would end up appreciating but you know what, cowboys have a soft and tender heart too. 😊

Overall: All right, all right, all right.
If I was to pick three only: I Never Cared For You, Gentle On My Mind, All Alone Am I
Live test: If my horse brings me there...

Album review by Pascal Derrien

Wednesday, 8 March 2017

Irish Songstress NAOISE ROO Covers Roy Orbison's "Crying" for Internat'l Women's Day



Dublin's Naoise Roo continues her effervescent streak with an a cappella version of Roy Orbison's sombre yet much loved hit "Crying". The track was recorded live in Dublin, Ireland last weekend by Gav Hennessy (The Co-Present) at a fundraising and awareness event hosted by Dublin Digital Radio to raise funds for Strike 4 Repeal. Roo's stunning vocals take this classic track to a new level of gripping intensity.

Set for release today, March 8, 2017, in honor of International Women's Day - a global event celebrating women's achievements in all aspects of society, culture, and politics to help promote gender equality, Naoise's spell-binding and hypnotic cover is mesmerizing in its stark retelling, injecting a fierceness and strength that recalls the intensity of both PJ Harvey and Siouxsie Sioux.

"'Crying' has been covered by so many artists, all touched by it's stark sense of loneliness and heartbreak," explains Naoise for the inspiration to cover the Orbison classic and release it on International Women's Day. "It's a song that means a lot to me and considering the various negative circumstances for women in Ireland and all over the world right now, I just felt compelled to sing it. It's an emotional outlet, which speaks for itself."


Naoise Roo has been making waves on the international music scene since the release of her debut album Lilith. Released last December, her third single "Whore" spawned a somewhat controversial yet tasteful video directed by acclaimed film maker Bob Gallagher (Girl Band) that provocatively twists the original seething feminine sensuality into heightened religious fervor. On her album Lilith, Naoise delivers a highly accomplished and enthralling insight into the emotional and musical range of the emerging songwriter. She deals with themes of heartbreak, desire, and female identity and stylistically ranges from powerfully emotional indie rock to delicate ambient electronic, visceral hard grunge to wryly flirtatious melodies - while still remaining strikingly unique.

Lilith was voted #1 Irish Album of the Year by both Unsigned and Independent and Remy's Music and Film Blog. It was produced by Elder Roche (Myles Manley) and Liam Mulvaney (Girl Band) and released on Little L Records.

Sunday, 26 June 2016

JULIET SIMMS Rises Again with the Release of FROM THE GRAVE EP on July 15th



“The concept of this EP is essentially personal growth and strength. Like everyone, I have been through tough times and have always been resilient and rose back up,” says alt-rocker JULIET SIMMS about her new EP FROM THE GRAVE which will be independently released on July 15, 2016. “In many ways, it's a snap shot of finding myself and never giving in.”

“Resilient” is a great word to describe Juliet who has seen the ups and downs of the music industry from up close with her label teams suffering the massive layoffs of the 2000s, another label suffering from the Japanese tsunami of 2010, as well the worldwide exposure of her second place finish on NBC’s hit music competition show The Voice. But she’s managed to keep her head far above the water and bounced back each and every time. With the release of From the Grave, Juliet mined the depths of her songwriting closet and uncovered a collection of mostly previously unreleased tracks that needed to see the light of day. “I wrote these songs in the last couple years,” she explains. “During and after the recording of [2015’s] All or Nothing, a few of the songs I intended for that EP but the crowd funding campaign I ran was for a 6 song EP only. These songs are indicative of life on the other side when having some darkness in your past.”

Kicking off with the scorcher “Get Ready” (which was co-written with her friends in Boys Like Girls), From the Grave is a rollercoaster of guitar-led rock, tempered by Juliet’s distinctive, gravelly purr and growl. The southern rock flair of “Say Hello” benefits from a massive blast of adrenaline and a swagger that’s equal parts of whiskey and swank. “'Say Hello' is a very cocky song,” she laughs. “It’s a part of my personality about unapologetically being yourself. Over the past few years I’ve noticed, and much like a lot of people or public figures, social media has two sides to it - the lovers and the haters. This song is for both. It’s an anthem for the good guys and a big ol’ bird for the bad guys.”

The midtempo pop of “Tidal Wave” shows off Juliet’s command of infectious songwriting and big, booming choruses. “I wrote with [producer] Aaron Sprinkle in Nashville,” she explains. “One of my biggest influences is Sheryl Crow and, at the time, I was immersed in some of her older material. I think that's why this song has a bit of a 90s feel to it. It’s about waiting for something to wake you up and knock you back into shape. It’s a sad happy song.”

The remainder of the eight-track EP travels such roads as the heavy rock of “Trouble Finds You” (“Chaos begets chaos in the song... with order chasing not far behind”), a tender rumination on Kurt and Courtney’s daughter Frances Bean in “Frances” (“Being a huge fan of both since I was a little girl, I naturally was effected by the films Montage of Heck and Soaked in Bleach and the new things learned that it inspired me to write some poetry much like both did”), and the acoustic ballad “Phoenix” (“The metaphor of being a phoenix waiting for your demise, just so you can return again stronger, more beautiful and ready to ‘fly’ again”).

Gearing up for “more touring and perhaps a new LP”, Juliet is once again bouncing back… and the great thing about her is that each time she’s presented with an obstacle, it only makes her determination and her songwriting so much stronger. If this EP is any indication, the lyrics in the song “Phoenix” perfectly captures her trajectory: “Like a phoenix, I’m just waiting to fly.”



From The Grave will be released on July 15, 2016.

Friday, 20 May 2016

geordie. Drops Official Music Video for “Tastes Like Chocolate”



LOS ANGELES, CA // May 20, 2016: The freshest new vibes coming from the streets of western LA are from rising singer-songwriter and producer, geordie. The “agro-pop” mastermind and postgraduate student at Georgetown University has been maniacally hacking away in his makeshift studio, cultivating a sexual (and sometimes comedic) sonic upheaval unlike any before it.

geordie.’s latest single, “Tastes Like Chocolate,” is about a Caucasian young man who has discovered his budding palate for “less vanilla” tastes. geordie. describes his music as largely autobiographical, and adds, “The song was written about a girl, as is so often the case; the kind of girl you want to celebrate like royalty. A white guy has a crush on this black chick, and he immediately gets this wonderful ego boost because of her mild validation. He thinks he’s the man and that she’s down with him, when in reality she just likes having him around fawning like a puppy.” The song and video clock in at just over four minutes, chock-full of exaggerated flattery and pandering to the new chocolate lady love of his life.

View the Official Music Video for geordie.’s “Tastes Like Chocolate” Below:



One might ask where a fun and sexy lyrical theme like this originates: “The song just appeared out of thin air,” geordie. explains. “I knew I was I was going to write something that was about her because I had no choice. I was thinking only of her. I just didn’t know what it was going to be about until I got to the chorus, and then I found it.” When asked how long it took to craft the words, he replied, “[It was] by far the fastest song I’ve ever completed. Took maybe two days, tops. You basically black out, and wake up and have a song.”

But as geordie. is known to do, there is an honest and forthright theme woven delicately throughout, and in his own words, “this song/video is about the celebration of being with someone you’re proud of. It’s self-deprecating and satirical at its core. I don’t know about anyone else, but when I honestly catch feelings for someone, it shows. There’s really nothing I can do to suppress that.”

The “Tastes Like Chocolate” music video was directed by John Connaboy, Danny Gilani and geordie.

Biography:

Equipped with a free spirit and a mind of his own, geordie. is making moves. The LA-based musician is set on infusing the scene with his incomparable vibe complete with grit, groove, and sexual satire. The self-proclaimed “badass mother fucker poet” draws influence from anything and everything, making his sound something worth hearing. geordie. celebrates individualism through creating tunes with elements spanning from hip-hop to country to straight up sunshine. His breakthrough jam “Tastes Like Chocolate” is a comedic ear-worm bound to reel in new listeners as this artist crafts his next hit.

geordie.’s music is destined to inspire a good time. Listen, laugh, and party on.

Wednesday, 18 May 2016

Hospitality In The Park - London Elektricity Big Band Announced



For a landmark event we had to pull in a landmark performance. On Saturday 24th September London Elektricity will be taking to the stage at Hospitality In The Park - but not for any ordinary DJ set. He'll be presenting, for the very first time, the London Elektricity Big Band including the return of multi-award winning jazz singer Liane Carroll, rising talent Emer, Reprazent frontman Dynamite MC and an incredible 12-piece brass band from Riot Jazz!

"The London Elekricity Big Band will be a world first - a 12 piece brass band, rhythm section and 3 vocalists playing drum & bass for an hour. This will be totally different to the old 'London Elektricity Live' from 2003. I couldn't and wouldn't have thought about doing this without Liane Carroll, who since we last performed together has won every single award going for best British jazz artist, but moreover she is simply the best living British vocalist in my opinion. We'll be cherry picking moments from the London Elekricity back catalogue, repping "Why Are We Here?" and a couple of surprise selections as well. Hospitality In The Park will be our first and quite possibly only show anywhere in the world this year. Oh I nearly forgot - I get to play bass in the band - that's one tick off of my bucket list!" - London Elektricity



This unmissable performance is just one of the many live sets to be taking place throughout the day. Find out about the other live acts to be joining us at Hospitality In The Park below!

Gentleman's Dub Club will be joining London Elek on the Hospitality mainstage! And 'if the truth be told' this nine-piece band's high energy blend of dub, reggae, roots and ska go hand in hand with our all day outdoor BBQ, blazing sunshine and a beer or two.

Med School's Ukrainian five-piece band The Erised will be making their debut UK performance on Soul In Motion and Med School's stage!

Frederic Robinson will be bringing his unique live show to Soul In Motion and Med School's stage. His live sound synthesis uses a mixture of software and hardware to bring a new lease of life to his own signature style of drum & bass.

Don't miss out on the perfect festival season finale! First release tickets are on sale now, if you want to get your hands on one you better act fast, these are likely to be gone before the month is up!

TICKETS HERE

ZAKK WYLDE ANNOUNCES ZAKK WYLDE EMOJI SET - NEW U.S. / CANADIAN TOUR DATES ANNOUNCED



Guitar icon ZAKK WYLDE has released a new custom emoji set available starting today via Emoji Fame, the go-to company specializing in making emoji sets for musicians. Thus far, the artist emoji space has been dominated by hip-hop and EDM acts, Zakk Wylde's set is one of the first on the rock/metal side of things, and the first for a guitar god.

"Many members of the Emoji Fame team are secretly guitar nerds, so when Zakk Wylde agreed to do an emoji set with us we were beyond excited," says Gavin Rhodes, co-founder of Emoji Fame. "Zakk is arguably one of the top-ten most influential guitar players of all time and we're immensely proud of the set that we put together with him. His emojis are hilarious with a double dose of SHRED thrown in for good measure.”

The emoji set is available starting today at itunes.emojifame.com.

ZAKK WYLDE recently announced new U.S. and Canadian tour dates in continued support of his new LP Book Of Shadows II. Wylde will hit over 40 cities spread out across the U.S. and Canada this summer including a performance at Heavy MTL Festival in Montreal on August 7th, a first for him as a solo artist. Tickets will go on sale this Thursday, May 12th. Tyler Bryant & The Shakedown and Jared James Nichols will serve as support.

BLACK LABEL SOCIETY will also be included as one of the marquee acts on OZZFEST MEETS KNOTFEST announced just yesterday.

Wylde, as always, has been on the road nonstop. He just wrapped up a buzzworthy stint on Steve Vai's GENERATION AXE TOUR and prior to that served as a marquee artist on THE HENDRIX EXPERIENCE TOUR with the likes of Billy Cox and Buddy Guy. This is the first time Zakk has toured as a headliner in the U.S. and Canada since last year's Unblackened tour.

7/8: Dallas, TX @ Gas Monkey Live 7/9: Oklahoma City, OK @ Diamond Ballroom 7/10: Austin, TX @ Emo’s 7/12: Houston, TX @ House of Blues 7/13: New Orleans, LA @ House of Blues 7/15: Orlando, FL @ The Plaza Live 7/16: Atlanta, GA @ The Masquerade 7/18: Millvale, PA @ Mr.Smalls Theatre 7/19: New York, NY @ Webster Hall 7/20: Norfolk, VA @ The NorVa 7/22: Charlotte, NC @ Amos’ Southend 7/23: Louisville, KY @ Mercury Ballroom 7/24: Chicago, IL @ Concord Music Hall 7/26: Minneapolis, MN @ Skyway Theatre 7/28: Detroit, MI @ The Majestic Theatre 7/29: Cleveland, OH @ The Agora Theatre 7/30: Philadelphia, PA @ Theatre Of Living Arts 7/31: Boston, MA @ Royale 8/2: Baltimore, MD @ Rams Head Live 8/4: Uncasville, CT @ Wolf Den at Mohegan Sun Casino *no support 8/7: Montreal, QC @ HEAVY MTL 8/8: Toronto, ON @ Phoenix Concert Theatre 8/10: Milwaukee, WI @ The Rave 8/11: Lincoln, NE @ Bourbon Theatre 8/13: Sturgis, SD @ Full Throttle Saloon *no support 8/15: Denver, CO @ The Summit Music Hall 8/16: Salt Lake City, UT @ The Depot 8/18: Missoula, MT @The Wilma 8/19: Calgary, AB @Flames Central 8/20: Saskatoon, SK @ O’Brian’s Event Centre 8/21: Winnipeg, MB @ The Garrick Centre 8/23: Edmonton, AB @ The Ranch Roadhouse 8/25: Vancouver, BC @ Commodore Ballroom 8/26: Seattle, WA @ Showbox SODO 8/27: Spokane, WA @ Knitting Factory Concert House 8/28: Portland, OR @ Roseland Theater 8/30: San Francisco, CA @ The Regency Ballroom 9/1: Las Vegas, NV @ House of Blues 9/2: Tempe, AZ @ The Marquee 9/3: Los Angeles, CA @ The Fonda Theatre

Book Of Shadows II was released on April 8th, 2016 via Entertainment One Music (eOne Music), Zakk Wylde's first solo release in 20 years. This release is the highly anticipated follow up to 1996’s Book of Shadows LP, a classic album Wylde released between his work with Ozzy Osbourne that has since become a fan favorite. The album debuted at #2 on the Independent Chart, #3 on the Rock Chart and # 6 on the Current Albums Chart, according to Nielsen SoundScan.

The fearlessly introspective melancholy and melody of Book of Shadows helped to make its follow-up one of Rolling Stone’s Most Anticipated Albums of 2016. As fierce and diverse as his work in Black Label Society and as large as his accomplishments as lead guitarist for Ozzy Osbourne have been, Book of Shadows II offers an even richer look into the spirit and psyche of one of the most beloved pillars of the hard rock community. Brand new tracks like “Sleeping Dogs,” “Tears of December,” “Darkest Hour,” “Harbors of Pity,” and “The King” are bold proclamations of intense feeling and powerful catharsis.

Zakk Wylde’s powerful pipes, mayhem-inducing charisma, mischievous humor, and instantly recognizable pinch-harmonic driven blues based histrionic guitar shredding have made him the world’s most beloved American Guitar Hero.

SKUMLOVE RESPONDS TO OUTRAGE CREATED BY CONTROVERSIAL SINISTER MINISTER ALBUM COVER



(EDITED NC-17 VERSION OF ALBUM COVER)

"When I decided to make this album cover, I wanted to do something that would make some noise. It just seems that the rebellious, unsafe and offensive side of rock music is going extinct. So what better way to pump a little life into it than to get five naked women wearing masks and make them my personal human throne? EMP has already gotten some up-turned eyebrows but they have stood by me. I don't want your parents to like my music. I don't want your parents to approve of the art. I don't want your pastor to be "OK" with the lyrical content. This is a Rock 'N' Roll; it's dirty, it's ugly and it's offensive. I think it's time we re-teach what Rock 'N' Roll really is. This is my big middle finger to the vanilla music industry. It's time for the zombie apocalypse of Rock 'N' Roll to RISE!" - Skum of Skumlove



Skumlove has recently signed to EMP Label Group and will be releasing their 2nd full length album "SINISTER MINISTER" on June 6, 2016 With a reunion show that same night at the Whisky A GoGo.