Tuesday, March 31, 2015

CD Review: The Coasters Can Still Find "Magical" Moments After 60 Years With New Album

Not many bands can boast about celebrating 60 years together, but the legendary vocal group The Coasters are doing in style with their first new album in 35 years. The current line-up of Joe Lance Williams, Primo Candelara, Dennis Anderson and Eddie Whitfield have been performing together for the last five years with Williams holding the most tenure in the band (15 years). The original Coasters were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987, being the first group inducted in.

Now The Coasters are celebrating their anniversary with an album of covers entitled "Magical Favorites." The fourteen songs that make up this release range from everything like rock ballads such as The Eagles' "Lyin' Eyes" to folk staples like "If I Had A Hammer." The best of this release is when The Coasters take on the classic R&B songs like "Cool Jerk" and "(Sittin' On) The Dock Of The Bay." Their voices mesh perfectly on the identical cover of The Temptations' "Just My Imagination (Running Away With Me)" and uplifting swing of Sam Cooke's "You Send Me." They still know how to have fun with "Twistin' The Night Away," before finishing the album with the Roy Orbison classic "Dream Baby (How Long Must I Dream)" as The Coasters due justice to this and all the songs on this new release.

The Coasters' "Magical Favorites" will be released on March 31 through Stardust Records in association with Cleopatra Records. To find out more about this release, please visit cleorecs.com.

Monday, March 30, 2015

CD Review: All That Remains Begins Their "Order Of Things" Tour In Connecticut

Massachusetts heavy metal band All That Remains will be heading to the Wolf Den at Mohegan Sun on April 3rd to begin their four month world tour. The band will be supporting their latest album "The Order Of Things," which was released back in February and debuted at #25 on the Billboard album chart.
 
The new twelve-song release begins with the thunderous drumming from Jason Costa on "This Probably Won't End Well" as lead singer Philip Labonte is in top form. Their hardcore heavy metal prowess comes blasting through on "No Knock," before hitting a more mainstream metal chord with the adrenaline pumping "Divide." Things slow down for the meaningful delivery of "For You," but quickly return to the quick heavy metal bashing of "A Reason For Me To Fight." The album's latest single "Tru-Kvlt-Metal" is an aggressive monster that looks to destroy all in its path, before closing the album with the seven-minute prog-metal feel of "Criticism And Self-Realization."
 
Check out All That Remains live at Mohegan Sun on April 3rd for free, before they head out on the road. They will be returning to the state in May, performing at the Webster Theater along with In Flames and Periphery. To find out more about the tour and the new album "The Order Of Things," please visit allthatremainsonline.com.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

CD Review: Eighties Rockers Translator Return With Album And Live Shows

San Francisco rock band Translator are enjoying a bit of a resurgence in underground popularity. They had a modern rock radio hit in 1982 with "Everywhere That I'm Not," before calling it quits in 1986. They released four studio albums between 1982-1986 and reunited a few times in the 2000's and even released a new album in 2012 entitled "Big Green Lawn." On March 31st, Omnivore Recordings will be releasing a new album from Translator ("Sometimes People Forget") full of rare demos recorded between 1979-1985. To support this new release, Translator with re-group for a string of shows in May in California.

The new twenty-two song release showcases a raw, truthful feel to their music, beginning with the post-punk energy of "Translator" and "Everywhere That I'm Not." These songs have a slightly different appeal as they are not overproduced and showcase the band's studio sound as they built up songs like "Necessary Spinning" and "Everything Is Falling." Their underground rock sound fits in perfectly with the modern alternative bands of the eighties like R.E.M., The Pretenders and fellow Californians Game Theory. The gentle flow of "Winter Crying" showcases another side to the band's songwriting, while this compilation displays how their music has grown and matured through their six years together. To find out more about this latest release from Translator on Omnivore Recordings, please visit omnivorerecordings.com.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

CD Review: Cherry Red Records Celebrates 50 Years Of "The Magnificent Moodies" With New Box Set

Many music fans know The Moody Blues by their grand, orchestrated rock sound as displayed in their biggest hit single, "Nights In White Satin," but it was their earlier sound that helped shape the sixties R&B sound in England. To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the debut album from The Moody Blues ("The Magnificent Moodies") Cherry Red Records recently released a two-disc box set which contains the remastered album along with tons of extra studio tracks.

The first disc begins with the original twelve song album remastered from the original tapes, which featured the top ten hit single "Go Now" along with other R&B covers and a handful of originals thrown in. Following the release of this album, singer/guitarist Denny Laine (Wings) and bassist Clint Warwick left the band, making this album the only one with this classic line-up. This box set features almost every recording The Moody Blues made during these 1964 and 1965 studio sessions. Following the songs from the album, the rest of the disc includes the mono versions of the A & B sides to six of the singles released during this time with also a rare "first version" of "Go Now" and "People Gotta Go" from the French only EP "Boulevard de Madeleine."

The real treasure of this box set is on the second disc beginning with the previously unreleased recording sessions 1964-1965, which includes many early version of songs from the album. It's great hearing this band working in the studio and hearing how songs like "Go Now" and "I'll Go Crazy" got formed from these early takes. Also featured on this disc are all of the BBC "Saturday Club" Sessions recorded between April 1965 to November 1965. Many of the songs showcased during these sessions are live, in-studio renditions of their singles, but also included are rare covers of Rufus Thomas' "Jump Back" and "I Want You To Know" from Fats Domino and Dave Bartholomew. The second disc closes with the 1966 Denny Cordell produced sessions for the band's follow-up album and singles, before Laine and replacement bassist Rod Clark parted ways with the band. All of the songs included in this box set help paint a picture of how hectic things were for The Moody Blues for two straight years, before becoming platinum selling artists with the album "Days Of Future Passed."

This box set was already released earlier this year on the Esoteric Recordings label and has garnished rave reviews from fans. Apart from the two CDs, the box set contains a full color booklet, poster and three re-printed fan club cards. To find out more about "The Magnificent Moodies" box set, please visit cherryred.co.uk and the Facebook page facebook.com/TheMagnificentMoodies.

Also new from English rock musician John Lodge is his new solo album "10,000 Light Years Ago" on May 4th through Cherry Red Records. Lodge may be better known as the singer, songwriter and bassist for The Moody Blues since 1966. His latest short, eight-song release begins with the grand progressive rock-like entrance of "In My Mind." John's voice is timeless on the upbeat, adult contemporary rock feel of "Those Days In Birmingham," before showing his softer side on the simply amazing acoustic touch of "Simply Magic." John changes gears for a moment with the slow jazzy waltz of "Love Passed Me By," then picks the tempo back up with the rockabilly rhythm of "Crazy," before closing with the symphonic rock of the title song "10,000 Light Years Ago," which sounds like it came off the latest Moody Blues album. To find out more about the latest release from John Lodge, please visit his Facebook at facebook.com/johnlodgemusic.

Friday, March 27, 2015

CD Review: Omnivore Recordings Reminds Us How Good Game Theory Was With Re-Release Of "Real Nighttime"

Fans of the eighties alternative pop/rock band Game Theory are celebrating the 30th anniversary of the band's second album "Real Nighttime." A brand new remastered version of the album was released on March 17th through Omnivore Recordings. Originally released in 1984, "Real Nighttime" was well received by critics everywhere and placed them alongside other rising bands like R.E.M. and the Dream Syndicate.
 
This newly released anniversary edition of the album includes 25 tracks (12 from the original album and 13 bonus songs) and shows why Game Theory was on their way to stardom. The songs on "Real Nighttime" are very addictive and energetic and still carry that underground alternative sound as in "Friend Of The Family" and "Curse Of The Frontier Land." They capture the eighties pop sound perfectly with "She'll Be A Verb" and also displays their post-punk youth with the title-song "Real Nighttime," but the real reason fans will want this new release is for the amazing bonus tracks. Although, the two bonus covers that appeared on the original CD release of the album got dropped, Omnivore Recordings added the acoustic outtake "Girl W/ A Guitar" and the pop rocker "Faithless." The new release also contains nine live songs recorded between 1984-1986 at various locations and a home demo cover of Queen's "Lily Of The Valley" that will simply amaze fans. To find out more about this new release from Game Theory, please visit omnivorerecordings.com