CD Reviews

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Trophy Scars – Holy Vacants

I think the fellows from The Dillinger Escape Plan hit the nail on the head when they named their 2010 album Option Paralysis, citing their strongly held and consistently reiterated belief in artistic ambition and adventure as the reason behind the title. They feel that despite the advent of the internet and the immediate access to entirety of music that it offers, the modern music scene is stuck in imitation of dead styles and is filled by incompetent artists ...
 
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Jen Chapin - Reckoning

Until I read the description of Jen Chapin's bio of her music as "Urban Folk Soul," I have to admit that I had never heard those words all strung together in that form before. However, the terminology definitely applies - as her musical style is all of those terms - and a whole lot more. Music is something that is entrenched deep into her soul - and she comes by it naturally as the daughter of the legendary singer-songwriter...
 
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Faint Waves – Ultra Wave

Wanna know what it feels like to be in an arcade game? I’m talking about actually jumping into one, Tron-style. Debut LP Ultra Wave from Florida-based amateur production Faint Waves rewinds to the 1980s to take you there in the future. Hardcore revivalist, the engineer behind it all, lives by the motto ‘the future is retro’. Hit play on his 11-track album and you’ll see what he means. Retro synthwave blurs with futuristic electronica to the point where Pac-Man lives again...
 
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Austra-Hulluu

If you’re checking out Austra’s videos for the first time, you may feel like you have stumbled upon a taboo world of desire. Their polished hypnotic beats won’t ever let you leave. Honestly, I’ve never heard anything like Austra. At first my mind was quietened by what I saw as confusing artistic motives and weird unearthly sounds which I found hard to comprehend. Like a river of ambiguity, the sound was both flowing and...
 
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Eddie Cotton - Here I Come

“You’ll get ran over if you stay on the ground/Get yourself up and fight another round,” sings blues artist Eddie Cotton on “Get Your Own,” a fast-paced soul song about not giving up. It’s one of a collection of tunes on his third and latest album, “Here I Come,” released on DeChamp Records. Listen to this son of a Mississippi preacher and you will hear that distinctive gospel background in his blend of electric blues. Produced by Sam Brady along with the artist...
 
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Cory Branan - The No-Hit Wonder

Trying to figure out a place where Cory Branan belongs musically is kind of tough. At times, he's a little bit on the Country side, but then again, he also has a definite rock and roll swagger that is mixed somewhat with a little bit of Punk sounds. His music doesn't stay in one style long enough to be labeled any one specific genre, so there lies the challenge. Just how do you label the Mississippi native? The answer,,,
 
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Jacob Thomas, Jr - Original Sin

Louisiana native Jacob Thomas, Jr. had a musical upbringing not too much unlike a lot of artists growing up in the heart of Cajun country. There was a lot of playing - musical and otherwise - at the clubs around home, as well as performing at Church on Sunday morning. However, for his debut album, the singer-songwriter takes more of a laid back and intimate approach, as evidenced as his performance on such sparse...
 
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Dirty Projectors - Gun Has No Trigger

Dirty Projectors are something else. They’re a little bit quirky but don’t underestimate the power of their killer harmonises. I immediately thought Robbie Williams when switching on the Dirty Projectors’, Gun Has No Trigger, and not in the preposterously large scale way you’d expect. It’s similar in it’s tone but super understated, very lovely indeed. It’s been a long time since I heard a voice like that, and you can find them on Spotify...
 
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Shooter Jennings - Don't Wait Up (For George)

One thing that is very much apparent whenever you talk to Shooter Jennings - he is definitely a "Music Man." And, it truly doesn't matter if the genre is Country, Rock, Folk, or Pop. He appreciates and loves it all. At the same time, his latest release is more than just a musical offering - it's a way to remember someone who was very much family - George Jones. Of course, Jones and Shooter's parents - Waylon and Jessi...
 
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Fishing - Shy Glow

Sydney producer wonder twins (not really twins), Fishing, are back and are ACTIVATING some killer tunes in the FORM OF their new debut album Shy Glow plus an Australian Tour. Trippy beats from Fishing’s debut album. The boys just keep delivering cool electronic tracks to tantalise us. For those who don’t know, I just made a Wonder Twins reference. More to the point, I’m absolutely frothing over this album...
 
Robert Kinsler & TJR

Music Worth Buying - Jack White and Corb Lund

Orange County Register (CA) music critic Robert Kinsler and his co-host, TJR review new CDs. This week TJR discusses Lazarreto by Jack White and Robert discusses Counterfeit Blues by Corb Lund.
 
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Deep Space Supergroop – CAPS

It’s good to know that Rob here is looking out for me – when you write about music and have to find 12+ bands per week to cover, you kinda stop paying attention to things like what the music sounds like. It’s all social media links, images, multimedia embedding and the oh so wonderful endless stream of emails. Oh, and let’s not forget that all important URL permalink. Heck, I was about to write about Deep Space Supergroop‘s newest song without...
 
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Cody Bryan Band - Wreck Me

Upon first listen - and additional research, one might just want to label the Cody Bryan Band a "Texas Music Act" and be done with it. But, while Bryan definitely is proud to hail from the Lone Stat State, there's a lot more to his sound than just those parameters. You can hear that on the wide-open title cut,which he sends into the rafters with some impressive guitar work but also some first-rate harmonies from his fellow...
 
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Chris Monaghan - Shameless

“It’s about living the life you want and doing what you love,” says singer/songwriter Chris Monaghan in a recent interview with The Baltimore Sun about his debut release “Shameless.” The 16-year-old artist from Maryland recorded in Nashville with producer Kim Copeland and the result is a contemporary-sounding collection of seven original songs. Monaghan opens his set with some catchy radio fare –- a light, fun and youthful “A...
 
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Throwing Snow – Best Tried In Winter

Throwing snow suggests a sort of icy sharp blast, hurtling towards its target with a steely determination. Reflective of this is the wintry whoosh of electronic tones and textures created by Throwing Snow, a production of abstract structure, electronic samples and arpeggiated tones interlaced with elements of folk and dubstep. Experimental UK producer Ross Tones is Throwing Snow. Rather than throwing snow at us (only fun if you’re the one doing...
 
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