CD Reviews


Flying Colors - Second Nature

Prog-pop supergroup Flying Colors is back with their second album, which is just as good as the first in some ways and maybe not quite so much in others. While the album maybe doesn't have the adrenalin of the group's first effort - which marked the first time that Alpha Rev vocalist Casey McPherson, legendary guitarist Steve Morse, Spock's Beard keyboardist Neal Morse, Dream Theater...

Mark T. Small - Smokin' Blues

“My main objective for this CD was to produce a recording that sounds and feels like I am playing in a small room with the listener…I am a ‘live’ player, not a studio guy,” says blues guitarist Mark T. Small about his latest album “Smokin’ Blues,” released on the Lead Foot Music label. The Massachusetts artist chose 12 songs for his fourth CD –- mostly blues standards –- but thoughtfully...

An Eclectic Mix of Voices Stir on New LPs

Johnny Marr, John Mellencamp and Nikki Lane thrill on their highly-anticipated returns, while a new tribute to Bruce Springsteen's epic "Born in the U.S.A." is essential listening for Americana and roots music lovers. Artist: Johnny Marr. Title: Playland (New Voodoo). You might like if you enjoy: The Church, The Cure, The Smiths. Tell me more: The breakaway modern...

Echo and the Empress – Altitude

The pop-folk, sister-duo from South Australia provided us with a sneak of what was to come with their new album that was released in May 2014, with their single One more Tear. Coming out in February and the song that won them the Fowlers Live Music award, One more Tear tantalised the ears of listeners and built the anticipation for their album release. The entire album is...

Lower Spectrum – Traces

It’s no secret that we have been blessed with a resurgence of unique electronic music acts. Those who aren’t fortunate enough to enjoy a VB tinnie and Karl Stefanovic in the morning (i.e. those up-over) have come to realise that us Aussies are onto something. Our homegrown produce is increasing in value as an export – take a look at Flume and RUFUS, who are both doing solo tours of the Americas this year.

July Talk - Self-Titled

Explosive July Talk are officially crashing through the music scene, with Peter Dreimanis’ growling undertones and the femininely coy Leah Fay tearing up the stage together- this five member band are all about some good old fashion, family fun. ESPECIALLY seeing as their songs are all about the Fay versus the Dreimanis. Usually the lyrics are a battle of the voices...

Pioneering Artists Showcased Anew

New releases featuring British alt rockers New Model Army, college radio faves Scruffy the Cat, English band Status Quo and new supergroup Trigger Hippy shed a welcome light on musical greats. Artist: New Model Army. Title: Between Wine and Blood (Eagle Rock Entertainment). You might like if you enjoy: Queens of the Stone Age, The Almighty.

Hits – Hikikomori

They literally sound like nothing I have ever listened to before, so there goes my usual opening sentence about what kind of a combination they are. In any case its definitely rock and roll, and not the kind us Gen X kids are used to, with song names to prove it like, Bitter And Twisted and Jesus F Christ. Hits are from Brisbane and in April this year released their second album Hikikomori (which...

Brandon Reeves - Secondhand EP

Music’s Mad Max is back. Tireless road warrior Brandon Reeves has released a five song EP of folk covers aptly titled “Secondhand.” As a bridge to his third full length album, it is his take on classics ranging from the jug band standard “Hesitation Blues” to the chain gang anthem, “Nine Pound Hammer.” His most pronounced influence is acoustic phenom Tommy Emmanuel. The Aussie...

Stephen Hunley - The Other Side of Never

More and more, it’s getting harder to fit albums or even single songs into a slot such as country, pop, rock, folk, blues and so on. (That’s probably why ‘Americana’ got invented.) That’s not a bad thing. Why should an album or a song – or a singer – get pigeonholed into a particular genre? As jazz giant Duke Ellington said, “If it sounds good, it is good.” However, radio programmers are intent on shoehorning songs...

Alvvays – Alvvays

I always listen to Alvvays. Since stumbling across their soundcloud around a year ago, they have always been that perfect band for when my hands are so cold at the tram stop that I can’t be bothered scrolling any further past the ‘A’ section of the alphabet in my iPod. It’s a lazy life, but that’s not to say that Alvvays are a lazy band. Both band members and childhood...

Lincoln – Visions of a Fading Light

Emergency nurse by day, electronic musician and songstress by night, Sydney’s Lincoln has just put out her debut EP. The body of work paints stunning yet heartbreaking soundscapes full of passion and emotion. Her classically trained voice is used to full effect with every note showing off phenomenal colour and life allowing you to feel every bit of emotion that is being sung about!

The Frowning Clouds – Legalize Everything

I loved Harry Potter as a kid. Loved it. Got to high school and fell out of love with it as I grew up, but not before I finished the last of the books as they came out. But even a decade ago, when there was that three year gap between the fourth and fifth books, I started to find the fandom lame. Now, people my age still love and rage about it. I’ve...

Honeyblood Has Some Killer Bangs

From the vibrant and cultured cosmopolitan city of Glasgow comes the female, guitar and drum playing, indie rock duo Honeyblood. While EDM and dubstep-influenced bangers permeate our radio waves, the Honeyblood girls are bringing back guitar-centric garage rock that echoes the classic sounds of The Breeders, PJ Harvey andThe Throwing Muses.

Rick Parma – Piece of Heaven

Musical energy and the exchange between audience and a song or band can be such a crucial lifeblood for a composer gathered in the name of fulfilling exhilarating music for music fans. Some of this applies to melodic Jazz absence of vocals. Some of it a combination of the two. Los Angeles based Sax player Rick Parma seems to have a firm hold on making a connection with listeners...
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