CD Reviews


Lee Ann Womack - The Way I'm Livin'

OK, first things first. It would do me no good in starting off this review by saying that I am going to be very objective in this one. Since her single of "Never Again, Again" crossed my desk at WDKN Radio back in 1997, I have been totally smitten with the artist known as Lee Ann Womack. She's one of few vocalists that take the Air Conditioning section of the phone book and make it sound like it came straight from Dolly or Tammy. Moments...

Marty Stuart & His Fabulous Superlatives - Saturday Night & Sunday Morning

I was born in February of 1974. So, by virtue of that fact, I never got to witness the synergy of Buck Owens, Don Rich, Doyle Holly, Tom Brumley, and Willie Cantu as the most legendary set of Buckaroos from 1964-1967. That sad fact aside, I will tell you what comes as close it gets to that type of sonic and live perfection - seeing a show from Marty Stuart and His Fabulous Superlatives. Just like with The Buckaroos, any of...

Owen Rabbit- Police Car

Owen Rabbit shows incredible potential as he experiments with elements of soul, trip-hop and R&B. He also uses a spray can to make a sample! What’s really great about Owen Rabbit’s debut release Police Car, is the complexity of the musicality. His sound, which encompasses elements of soul, trip-hop, indie and R&B, is unique and experimental. Owen Rabbit shows with this release that gone are the days of the young artist...

Joe Bonamassa - Different Shades of Blue

Okay, by now you know who Joe Bonamassa is. The blues titan has gone from “the greatest guitar player no one has ever heard of” to the #1 guitar player in the world thanks to PBS and a worldwide social media firestorm. The mainstream music press may have been slow to catch on (Rolling Stone did not mention him until they reviewed his 14th album, “Driving Towards The Daylight” last year). His newest release...

Matt Turk - Cold Revival

“This is a much more personal record. After interpreting songs by The Beatles and The Rolling Stones [on the 2010 release “American Preservation”], I really made a point of looking inward,” says folk artist Matt Turk in a 2013 Westchester Magazine interview, discussing going into the studio to work on his upcoming album “Cold Revival.” All 11 songs here are written by or adapted from other works by the Hastings, New York singer/songwriter...

Cymbals Eat Guitars - LOSE

The world is divided into two types of people. Those who have failed to come to terms with the fact that the 90’s rock era has ended (you will be avenged one day, 90’s gods), and those that choose to channel this deep-rooted anxiety and yearning and develop it into something productive. Something beautiful. Cymbals Eat Guitars is one such band.

Flip Grater – Pigalle

New Zealand is absolutely killing it in the music scene. Usually, as an Aussie music lover I’d be totally reluctant to admit this, but it’s hard to ignore the handful of divas they’ve produced recently including; Lorde, Sia and Kimbra. I wasn’t surprised when I saw that Flip Grater, a folk artist with the shiny locks of Zooey Deschanel, was yet another talented New Zealand beauty. Everything about Flip Grater is beautifully understated. Her soft...

Yolke – Real Memories

My earliest memory is of a recurring dream / nightmare I had when I was about 4 to 6 years old involving the cast of the then popular children’s television program Johnson and Friends. I remember moments of the dream as vividly as holidays and Christmases from when I was around that age, and there a few other vivid, colourful memories from when I was very young, but are too surreal to have actually happened. Being frightened/abducted or something by a...

Roxanna - Exotica

This is Roxanna’s debut release entitled “Exotica” which was produced by legendary Producer Mark Portmann (Celine Dion, Josh Groban, Barbra Streisand, Annie Lennox, Christina Aguilera) There’s even a performance by Chris Botti (Trumpet) and The Prague Orchestra. During my research it’s obvious she’s received critical acclaim from many music critics around the globe thus far. Exotica is one release that certainly doesn’t disappoint.

Richard Cuthbert – Winterlude

Richard Cuthbert makes some beautiful music. He really does. Music wise, I am a folky flower child at heart. While I don’t do tie-dye or middle part my hair I’m partial to soft, crooning vocals and sweetly, strummed acoustic guitar. It will always make me weak at the knees, but to be honest, folk can get a little stale in big doses which is why it’s awesome he didn’t make a 90 minute worth of it. Thank you for having mercy on my soul which only yearns for folk...

Twin Peaks - Wild Onion

Twin Peaks have peaked. Yes, you heard us right. They've peaked. The Chicago quartet have just released their new EP Wild Onion and they are making smooth, smooth rock pop. They’ve compared their sound to the Beatles, Stones and Beach Boys – it would be remiss to say they didn’t definitely have elements of all of those bands. Wild Onion is almost a love note to each of these bands mixed in some original kinks layered over raw production quality making...

Historic Reissues Shed Light on Rock Pioneers

Big Star's first two album releases, the lone album from Billy Thermal, and legendary guitar great Tommy Bolin's first band Zephyr have just been reissued and showcase groundbreaking artists at the dawn of their legendary careers. Artist: Big Star Title: #1 Record / Radio City (Stax Records / Concord Music Group). You might like if you enjoy: The Replacements...

Life in a Blender - We Already Have Birds That Sing

“The pencil shavings / The sourballs / The paperclip dispenser / They cheer me up / I know they’re always there / I know they won’t desert me,” sings frontman Don Rauf of New York City-area band Life In A Blender on irresistible, 70s funk punk “Shards,” from their latest EP “We Already Have Birds That Sing.” With a David Byrne bravado he paints a detailed lyric landscape of the bits and pieces of our lives, and he delivers like a revered ...

Anthonie Tonnon – Up Here For Dancing

Residing in Auckland, New Zealand, Anthonie Tonnon gives us a cycle of indie rock with smooth jazz and folk undertones. Tonnon is making his way from Middle Earth to the top, having recently spent five weeks touring in the US, introducing material from his album Up Here For Dancing to American audiences in over 30 shows. Anthonie Tonnon’s sound is addictive and laid back, featuring seductive, languid vocals which remind me...

The Maelstrom Cabinet - An Unstable Sun Goddess

Without a doubt, this band fits right in the genre of indie folk. But when you add the tag, freak pop, all the elements beyond that intrinsic folk façade will suddenly decide that it needs to take centre stage and stand out to you. It might just be the twist you are looking for in a musical world where everything in this genre starts to sound all too similar. But what did The Maelstrom Cabinet intend for people’s first impressions to be with...
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