Reviews

D’Angelo and the Vanguard | Black Messiah (RCA Records)

Written by Ashley White Friday, 30 January 2015 13:29

DAngeloandtheVanguard BlackMessiah_75_copy_copyWhat we have is an album that’s reminiscent of the 90s soul, but nothing mind-blowingly spectacular.

 

 

Wu-Tang Clan | A Better Tomorrow (Warner Bros.)

Written by Brett Berliner Thursday, 22 January 2015 23:25

wutang-better 75The Wu returns with a solid effort that often fails to get out of gear.

   

Crowned In Earth | Metempsychosis (Sonic Mermaid)

Written by Nik Cameron Thursday, 22 January 2015 23:19

cd Crowned in EarthThe music is full of synergy and the vocals are as common as guitar solos on a KISS record.

 

Walk the Moon | Talking Is Hard (RCA)

Written by Bruce Matlock Wednesday, 21 January 2015 21:13

cd walk-the-moonThe band is propelling itself to a sold-out tour on the strength of first single “Shut Up and Dance.”

   

this mountain | Still Waters (s/r)

Written by Adam Robinson Wednesday, 21 January 2015 21:10

cd StillwatersThis is the best folk-rock band you’ve never heard of.

 

Sugar Candy Mountain | Mystic Hits (Royal Oakie)

Written by Marc Farr Thursday, 15 January 2015 11:21

cd sugar-candyThis album could speak novels…if the band only knew what it wanted to say.

   

Marilyn Manson | The Pale Emperor (Hell, Etc.)

Written by Marc Farr Thursday, 15 January 2015 11:19

prev manson_75Without all of the synths and oddities, the material here is less dramatic and more honest.

 

Nick Jonas | s/t (Island)

Written by Samantha LaBat Wednesday, 14 January 2015 23:52

nickjonas 75No longer a kid wearing a purity ring, Nick Jonas reinvents himself with his self-titled album.

   

California X | Nights in the Dark (Don Giovanni Records)

Written by Samantha LaBat Wednesday, 14 January 2015 23:48

californiax 75Nights in the Dark is a perfect balance of hard rock and smooth ballads, capturing a myriad of emotion and displaying awesome guitar solos.

 

Milo Greene | Control (Elektra)

Written by Samantha LaBat Sunday, 28 December 2014 23:12

cd milo-greeneControl sounds like a major motion picture soundtrack, but does not need the motion picture to accompany it.

   

Empires | Orphan (Chop Shop)

Written by Jennifer Manjarez Sunday, 28 December 2014 23:05

cd EmpiresThe songs set the mood for a laidback and relaxing evening in…or an extremely slow Sunday morning rise and shine.

 

A Skylit Drive | Rise: Ascension (Hero)

Written by Adam Robinson Sunday, 28 December 2014 23:03

cd skylit-driveI’d high five them for their ability to take heavy music and make it acoustic; they did it really well.

   

Josef Salvat | In Your Prime (Columbia)

Written by Samantha LaBat Sunday, 28 December 2014 23:01

cd josef-salvatIn Your Prime, while stretching outside of its genre, consists of new, original music with a unique sound that carries deep emotion.

 

6:33 | Deadly Scenes (Kaotoxin)

Written by Nik Cameron Monday, 22 December 2014 13:52

cd 633The insanity 6:33 has created cannot be truly described.

   

Mary J. Blige | The London Sessions (Capitol)

Written by Ashley White Monday, 22 December 2014 13:50

cd mary-j-bligeA bit more time would have allowed the artist to produce a genuine feeling, an evolved musical album, but it just isn’t there.

 

Johnny Aries | Unbloomed (Frenchkiss)

Written by Alex Schreiber Thursday, 11 December 2014 11:28

cd Johnny-AriesThe pain/pleasure and bleak/bright are all rolled into one sonically beautiful album.

   

Jamie T | Carry on the Grudge (Virgin)

Written by Kiernan Scrima Thursday, 11 December 2014 11:17

cd jamie-TIt’s an album about the life on the dirty side of London, which is vintage Jamie T.

 

Meg Myers | Make a Shadow (Atlantic)

Written by Bruce Matlock Thursday, 11 December 2014 11:16

cd meg-myersMyers’ voice ranges from sultry and grandiose, to howling with the best of them.

   

Perry Como | The Classic Christmas Album/Frank Sinatra | The Classic Christmas Album (Legacy)

Written by Jim Ousley Monday, 08 December 2014 16:38

cd xmas-comoCome with me on this little yuletide adventure I have dubbed “A Tale of Two Crooners.”

 

The M Machine | Just Like (OWSLA)

Written by Marc Farr Sunday, 07 December 2014 20:18

cd M-machineHigh energy and melodic, it has the potential to be a huge club hit.

   

The Singer and the Songwriter | What a Difference a Melody Makes (Mason Jar)

Written by Marc Farr Tuesday, 02 December 2014 12:39

cd singer-songwriterThis is a great album: smoky and jazzy, with just the right amount of modern-day songwriting.

 

Siena Root | Pioneers (Cleopatra)

Written by Marc Farr Tuesday, 02 December 2014 12:37

cd Siena-RootThough its influences are obvious, Siena Root has enough originality to call its sound its own.

   

Jethro Tull | War Child: 40th Anniversary Theatre Edition (Chrysalis)

Written by Marc Farr Tuesday, 02 December 2014 12:34

cd jethro-tull_copyAlthough War Child was originally planned as an ambitious film/soundtrack project, the film never saw the light of day.

 

Earth, Wind & Fire | Holiday (Legacy)

Written by Laura Hamlett Saturday, 29 November 2014 18:03

cd EWF-holidayThis album is EWF through and through, so much that you may not recognize the standards.

   

Aaron Krause | Holding On to Love (s/r)

Written by Laura Hamlett Thursday, 27 November 2014 23:43

cd aaron-krauseThis album is 10 songs of vibrant, shimmering pop, with Krause’s many talents on full display.

 

Mikey Wax | s/t (Toucan Cove)

Written by Laura Hamlett Thursday, 27 November 2014 23:40

cd mikey-waxDance floor–ready first single and disc opener “You Lift Me Up” takes you instantly to the crest of the wave—no paddling required.

   

The Velvet Underground – 45th Anniversary Super Deluxe Edition (Polydor/UMe)

Written by Jim Dunn Thursday, 27 November 2014 13:37

cd Velvet-UndergroundThe quality of the songwriting was certainly still there, but the production left it with a sound that had less edge and more seduction.

 

Trans-Siberian Orchestra | The Christmas Attic Double Vinyl Version (Audio Fidelity/Atlantic)

Written by Marc Farr Thursday, 27 November 2014 13:36

cd TSOHeavy and melodic, The Christmas Attic is a rock opera like no other.

   

Simple Minds | Big Music (Chrysalis)

Written by Marc Farr Thursday, 27 November 2014 13:35

cd Simple-MindsBig Music is just that: big in sound, power, and melody.

 

Underworld | Dubnobasswithmyheadman Super Deluxe Edition (UMe)

Written by Ashby Walters Thursday, 27 November 2014 13:33

cd UnderworldWhen originally released, Dubnobass was interesting because it toyed with different instruments and styles.

   

Alarm Clock Conspiracy | Harlequin (s/r)

Written by Marc Farr Thursday, 27 November 2014 13:32

cd alarm-clockThe album is a dreamy, yet uneven, combination of rock, alternative pop, country, and ’70s classic rock.

 

The Wytches | Annabel Dream Reader (Partisan)

Written by Marc Farr Thursday, 27 November 2014 13:30

cd WytchesHeavy and raw, The Wytches prove that true underground music still exists and thrives.

   

Various Artists | The Classic Christmas Albums: Pop & Hard Rock (Legacy)

Written by Laura Hamlett Sunday, 23 November 2014 18:37

cd classic-xmas-pop“Carol of the Bells” is my favorite classic Christmas song, so although I have multiple renditions of it, adding another is a pleasure.

 

Sonny Vincent and the Spite | Spiteful (Ultramafic)

Written by Laura Hamlett Sunday, 23 November 2014 14:11

cd sonny-vincentVincent’s announcement is simple: This ain’t history; this is rock and fucking roll.

   

Various Artists | Christmas at Downton Abbey (Warner Bros.)

Written by Jennifer Manjarez Sunday, 23 November 2014 13:55

cd downtown-abbeyOne could easily envision any one of these songs as the backdrop to the forthcoming Christmas episode.

 

Tears for Fears | Songs from the Big Chair Deluxe Edition (Island)

Written by Jim Ousley Sunday, 23 November 2014 13:52

cd tears-for-fearsThe band’s sophomore effort succeeded in replacing “me” with “us,” putting the listener into the world instead of orbiting outside of it.

   

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