CD Reviews

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George A Paul's Holiday CD Roundup for 2015

If you’re hosting a Christmas party or just getting around to trimming the tree, here are some new releases to freshen up your seasonal soundtrack. Artist: The Brian Setzer Orchestra. Title: Rockin’ Rudolph (Surfdog). You might enjoy if you like: Big Bad Voodoo Daddy, Royal Crown Revue, Stray Cats. Tell me more: For his third studio Christmas album – and first...
 
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Robert Kinsler's Music DVD Gift Guide - Part 1

With Christmas just around the corner, now is the time to pick up some outstanding music-minded multi-format releases new in 2015. Here are some highly-recommend titles available on DVD and Blu-ray (and in some cases as a multi-format deluxe set). Artist: Rush. Title: R40 Live (Rounder). You might like if you enjoy: Rush. Tell me more: For fans of Rock and...
 
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Playwrite - Cathedrals

The debut album is always a tough hill to get over. For Melbourne five-piece collective Playwrite the road traveled to reach their debut album Cathedrals was one walked with determination in the face of some big odds. With band members exiting the group and a dedication to strive for perfection rather than settling for average delayed the release of their debut full length...
 
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Erica Sunshine Lee - Southern Amendment

Don’t let Erica Sunshine Lee’s seductive packaging fool you – her latest release, an EP called Southern Amendment, isn’t full of stereotypically “female country singer” charms and Lee isn’t a songwriting lightweight coasting on her sex appeal. Instead, it’s a bucket of bloody blues fistfight with few lulls and only country in the vaguest sense. There’s twang to spare and the songs are often ...
 
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Sasha March - Don’t Go Falling

I recently found myself discussing Thomas Hardy’s novel Tess of the D’urbervilleswith a friend. If you haven’t read it it’s well worth your time, albeit a dark and harrowing time will ensue when you do give it a go. So wouldn’t you know it, I’ve found a near perfect companion to that novel in the form of Sasha March‘s debut album Don’t Go Falling; a story of loss, resentment and redemption.
 
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King Gizzard and The Lizard Wizard - Paper Mâché Dream Balloon

“Stuck in a daydream / under a moonbeam / head on my pillow at home,” chirps Stu Mackenzie in the opening seconds to the title track from King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard‘s latest exposition Paper Mâché Dream Balloon. As flutes flutter around like birds and guitars pluck their way gently through a bed of acoustic instrumentation, it seems like no other ...
 
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The Vacant Smiles - Lemmings

Simple and utterly infectious The Vacant Smiles know how to turn out raw unbridled rock. Formed from high school friends inspired by the DIY attitude fast and primitive three-chord aggression of 60s garage, the Melbourne quartet channel the electricity of their predecessors into their own adrenaline charged tracks. The group’s current line-up comprises of guitarist-vocalists James Lynch and...
 
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Dom Zilla - Chasing Days

With the rise of the “producer” in recent years, audience focus has slowly shifted from the front of house artist to the masterminds behind so much of the music we hear. As the internet draws back the curtain across the music industry, the spider web of songwriters, producers, technicians and artists is much less of a secret. In fact, this collaborative effort is...
 
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Leslie Cours Mather – Santa Baby (You’ll Be Mine)

After releasing two fine singles this year – the country-rocker “Countrified” and the take-no-prisoners “Hell Hath No Fury” – Leslie Cours Mather is lightening things up a little this holiday season with her original Christmas song “Santa Baby (You’ll Be Mine).” It’s a fun and flirtatious mid-tempo ditty that takes a look at Santa’s better half – or rather, at her...
 
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Christmas Music Releases Serve as Soundtrack for the Holidays

Sooner or later it seems just about every artist releases a Christmas album. This year there is a wealth of new holiday-minded titles that make perfect stocking stuffers. Artist: Pentatonix. Title: That's Christmas to Me (RCA). You might like if you enjoy: Pentatonix, Ray Conniff Singers. Tell me more: The 2015 deluxe edition of the Pentatonix collection "That's Christmas...
 
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Zack Shelton and 64 to Grayson - Loved and Free

From the almost-Celtic road anthem “18 Going 75,” to the Southern-rock icon paean “Charlie Daniels,” Zack Shelton and 64 to Grayson’s new album Loved and Free mixes influences of traditional and alternative country with a little bluegrass and a touch of the Irish feel that came into Appalachia in the 1930s. But this band also makes no bones about its loyalty to Jesus Christ and America, with...
 
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Chris Yakopcic - The Next Place I Leave

This is an absolutely stunning surprise, packed with great material, picking and music of the highest order. Yakopcic is a clearly talented acoustic/resonator guitar picker with a complete mastery over the instrument and the acoustic blues/roots US tradition. Based in Ohio, he was a finalist at this year's International Blues Challenge in Memphis and though not...
 
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Nine Lies - 9Lies

I have to say it right at the start for those of you who skim these reviews. This album, “9Lies” kicks ass. Simply put. The belated follow up to their 2007 debut ‘Behind it all’, the Belfast, Ireland outfit ‘Nine Lies’ have truly found their niche and sound with this outing. Everything is in its place. Hooks. Monstrous beat. Melody. It’s all there. Listen to the previews and hear for...
 
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Celebrated Artists Make Eagerly-Awaited Returns

Fall 2015 has revealed a number of exciting returns for classic artists, including long-awaited returns by Jeff Lynne's ELO and British pop-rock outfit Squeeze, as well as high-profile releases from Canadian singer-songwriter Bryan Adams, German hard rock outfit Scorpions and the first-ever solo album from ZZ Top singer-guitarist Billy Gibbons. Artist: Jeff Lynne's ELO...
 
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Tim McGraw - Damn Country Music

Tim McGraw’s said of his 14th studio album, “Damn Country Music” “It’s is all about passion, (taking him back to 1989) “when I came to Nashville to chase my dreams.” Country music has richly rewarded him over the past two decades and he honors the genre’s tradition here. The album gets off to a very traditional start with Celtic folk. The ...
 
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