Sunday, March 1, 2015

CD Review: New Rock Music From Brainticket And From Consider The Source

German Krautrock (mixture of rock and electronic music) band, Brainticket originated in the early seventies by Joel Vandroogenbroeck. He was the "youngest jazz pianist" to earn the Art Tatum award at age fifteen and toured Europe as a member of the Quincy Jones Orchestra. Vandroogenbroeck became interested in the Krautrock sound created by the band Tangerine Dream and decided to start a band of his own called Brainticket. They released three albums in four years and developed an underground following before disbanding in 1974. They regrouped again in the early eighties to record two albums, but was quickly put on hiatus. One more Brainticket album appeared in 2000, as Cleopatra Records found interest in the band, releasing a four-CD box set entitled "The Vintage Anthology." Now, fifteen years later, the latest formation of Brainticket is releasing a new album "Past Present & Future."

The new nine-song release begins with the two-part progressive rock adventure "Dancing On A Volcano," which totals 30 minutes long. The talking sound clips, mixed with the outstanding musicianship takes your mind on a journey with the worldly feel of "Reality Of Dreams" and the space-rock of "Riding The Comet." The dream-like vocals of "Singularity" is a nice contrast to the hard rock rhythm of the song. The album finishes up with the seventies-style blues of "Brainticket Blues" that closes the album with a timeless rock feel. The new album was released on February 17th through Cleopatra Records. To find out more, please visit cleorecs.com.

Next, from New York, comes the latest release from the progressive-rock trio Consider The Source. Since forming over ten years ago, the band has been named one of the top young prog-rock bands. They have toured all over the world, performing along with bands like King Crimson, The Disco Biscuits and Grace Potter & The Nocturnals. Their new 3-disc collection entitled "World War Trio" begins with the six-part song "Put Another Rock In That Bag." The twenty-three minute journey showcases many of the band's influences, beginning with a science-fiction instrumental, reminiscent of Pink Floyd's "Dark Side Of The Moon" interludes. The band travels around during parts two and three with a more jazz fusion feel, before closing with a heavier, more aggressive bass lead rock sound on parts five and six. The second disc in the set will be released this winter, but look for Consider the Source to be on the road during the month. To find out more about their new EP "World War Trio Part 1," please visit considerthesourcemusic.com.

Saturday, February 28, 2015

CD Review: Supertramp's Carl Verheyen Plays It "Alone" On His New Release

American guitarist Carl Verheyen recently released only his second acoustic solo album entitled simply "Alone." Carl is currently the guitarist for the rock band Supertramp and has been a part of the band since the mid-eighties. He is also an instructor for the Thorton School of Music of the University of Southern California. His last album "Mustang Run" (review here jpsmusicblog.blogspot.com) was a reminder of how good of guitarist Verheyen is and how he is able to support his own music with his incredible skills.

This latest release features fourteen instrumentals including cover songs mixed with originals as Carl explained how many of these songs came from improving on the acoustic guitar. The album begins with the warm inviting tones of "Last Train Home" as Carl's playing keeps you focused on his performance. The gentleness of "Mercy Street" and the pure blues of "Good Morning Judge" shows the diversity in his skills, while keeping a common bond between the songs. He performs his trilogy of Beatles' tunes ("All You Need Is Love," "Norwegian Wood" and "In My Life") with "In My Life" the most recognizable as he changes tempos and chords on the other two, in order to show a different side to the songs. His beautiful rendition of "Going Home (Theme of the Local Hero)" is an easy flow in order to let your emotions get lost in it, while "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road" and "Over The Rainbow" are finally tied together in the perfect way.

Carl Verheyen has a handful of dates in California, before heading over to Europe in July with live dates. To find out more about Carl Verheyen and his latest album, "Alone," please visit carlverheyen.com.

Friday, February 27, 2015

CD Review: Marcus Singletary Explores "Science" And The Holy Gasp Is Part Of "The Last Generation Of Love"

Singer/songwriter/instrumentalist Marcus Singletary returns with a new album of brand new material entitled "Defiance Science." The album will not be released until May, but the new songs are already creating a buzz. All of the music and singing is handled by Marcus using a load of musical gadgets in order to capture his sonic space trip. The new nine-song release begins with the introductory instrumental "Science" as Marcus gives off a futuristic musical piece. He adds a pop/dance beat to "Party Like A Star" as the chorus looks to hook you in with its infectious groove. The psychedelic tone of "Shangri-Rock" and the harder delivery of "Genovia," shows that Marcus' songwriting spreads across many different genres. Marcus saves his best for last with the outstanding guitar work on "Young Lady Of Royalty" and the up-tempo rocker "Tomorrow No." To find out more about Marcus Singletary and his latest release "Defiance Science," please visit his Facebook page at facebook.com/MarcusSingletaryMusic.

From Canada comes the latest release, "The Last Generation Of Love" from the bossa-nova rock band The Holy Gasp. Since forming in 2011, The Holy Gasp have been trying to reinvent surf-rock by blurring the lines between jazz and punk music. The new eight-song release begins with the quick two-minute blast of energy known as "The Man Ain't Groovy." They get their mambo groove shakin' with "The Last Generation Of Love," before moving on to the aggressive jazz attack of "Bedbugs." The album finishes up with the thunderous, rhythm-heavy sound of "How I Get Down" and the quick, punk-like shuffle of "All The Animals," that explodes during the chorus.To find out more about The Holy Gasp and their latest release "The Last Generation Of Love," please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/TheHolyGasp.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

CD Review: Columbia Records Releases The Soundtrack To The Final Season Of "Sons Of Anarchy"

One of the more successful series recently appearing on cable television, FX's "Sons Of Anarchy" has decided to call it quits after seven seasons. Almost as successful as the television show was the soundtrack which is known to take well-known rock classics and put a different spin on them, which helps make the music more memorable during the past season of the show. Columbia Records along with FX and Twentieth Century Fox have teamed up to deliver "Songs Of Anarchy: Volume 4," which was released on February 24th.
 
The new twelve-track release begins with the angelic voices of children singing the opening verses of Queen's "Bohemian Rhopsody." The Forest Rangers take over the song giving it the true feeling of regret as the melodic changes are still present, but with a bit of a country twang. The duo of Audra Mae and Billy Valentine take on The Association's "Never My Love," slowing the tempo down of the original and injecting true emotion into the lyrics. The gentle feel of "Greensleeves" showcases the amazing vocal talents of Katey Sagal, while guest artist Ed Sheeran creates some of his most passionate and darkest music of his career with his cover of Foy Vance's "Make It Rain." One song that was overdue to appear on a "Sons Of Anarchy" soundtrack was "Baby, Please Don't Go," which was popularized by the Irish rockers, Them back in the sixties and has been resurrected wonderfully by Franky Perez & The Forest Rogers for this release. Singer/songwriter Amos Lee lends his talents and his soul to the Bob Dylan classic "Boots Of Spanish Leather," before the album closes with The White Buffalo & The Forest Rangers teaming up for the acoustic strumming sing-along of "Come Join The Murder."
 
To find out more about "Songs Of Anarchy: Volume 4," please visit shop.fxnetworks.com.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

CD Review: Classical Composer Michael Vincent Waller Visits "The South Shore" And The Daniel Bennett Group Takes Us To "Clown Castle"

American composer Michael VIncentWaller will be releasing his full-length debut album "The South Shore" on March 8th. It is a two-disc set which features over two hours of contemporary classical music. The 31-track set begins with a handful of recordings that Waller has made over the course of the last three years, including one of his most recent compositions, the beautifully elegant "Anthems." The gentle touch of "Profondo Rosso" and "Pasticcio per meno e piu" shows the delicacy that Waller creates his music with. The highlights of this set are two, four-part cello pieces of the darker toned "Pupazzo di Neve Partitas" and the sweet sounds of "Y For Henry Flint." The set is wonderfully decorated with photos by Phil Niblock and is released through his own label. To find out more about Michael Vincent Waller and his new album "The South Shore," please visit michaelvincentwaller.com.
 
New York City jazz band The Daniel Bennett Group recently released their sixth album entitled "The Mystery At Clown Castle." The new eleven-song release begins with the wildly energetic feel of "The Clown Chemist" as Bennett's horns lead the way. The energy stays high with the light, playfulness of "Paul Platypus," before turning darker with the avant garde poetry reading by Brett Milewski during "Minor League." The mood turns light once again with the wonderful flute work of Danial Bennett in "Nine Piglets" and "Flow." The album finishes up with the addition of Jason Yeager on piano, which gives an added dimension to their sound in "Uncle Muskrat," before closing with the experimental fumbling of "Outside The Inside Outro." To find out more about The Daniel Bennett Group and the latest release "The Mystery At Clown Castle," please visit danielbennettgroup.com.