Tempt’s Debut EP Is A Guilty Pleasure For Any Fan Of Big Hair And Even Bigger Rock

Courtesy:  Chipster PR

Courtesy: Chipster PR

Indie rock band Tempt recently released its debut EP Under My Skin.  The New York based band’s debut record is something special, especially for fans of bands such as Def Leppard, Journey, Poison and others of that ilk.  The band’s members—Zach Allen (vocals), Harrison Marcello (guitar, keyboards, vocals), Jimmi Kane (drums), and Zak Gross (bass, vocals)—are way too young to have grown up in the 80s.  But the sound that the band’s members collectively craft is one that displays such respect for the music of the era.  It truly makes Tempt quite the rarity in the current era of rock music.  The band transports audiences back to that era of big hair and equally big rock songs right off the top in the EP’s title track.  That pomp and bombast doesn’t let up even in the slightest as the band moves into the EP’s second song.  The song exhibits something of a Queensryche influence circa Rage for Order.  And on the EP’s penultimate track, the 8-s big hair influence keeps rolling before the band closes things with a standard 80s ballad-style song.  All things considered, anyone that is a fan of big rock and big hair will agree after hearing this EP that Under My Skin is one of the best of the year’s new EPs.

The members of Tempt look to be far too young to have grown up in the 80s.  That hasn’t stopped the band from crafting an EP loaded with music that sounds like it has been kept in a time capsule for ages and pulled right from that era of big rock and big hair.  This is obvious right off the top in the EP’s opener and title track.  If one didn’t know any better, one would think this was Def Leppard, Journey, Poison, or another major name act that had its heyday in that era.  Lyrically speaking, the song centers on the standard subject of a broken relationship.  What’s most interesting about it here is not just the standard over-the-top nature of the song, but [Zach] Allen’s vocals on the song.  He sings much in the same style as other big name vocalists from the day as he sings, “Stop and start many years ago/You was a looker that I/Got to know/Now I’m sitting here/The pain won’t die/With the letter saying you’ve left my side.”  There is just a certain quality to his vocal style.  And the song’s chorus brings about even more of that classic song style with the rest of the band joining in almost the same style as the aforementioned bands.  It is pure retro rock joy for fans of that sound.

The first impression that the band makes on its brand new EP is just the beginning of the retro rock joy for fans of hair metal.  ‘Use It Or Lose It’ comes second on the disc.  Those that are more familiar with bands from the era of hair metal will hear influences from the likes of Queensryche right from the song’s opening riff and the chorus style vocals.  The song is just as good a follow-up to ‘Under My Skin’ lyrically as it is musically.  That’s because it follows a similar lyrical theme.  Allen sings here about a woman that is bad news for all intents and purposes.  He sings in the song’s opening verse, “She’ll steal your soul/Drag your mind through pouring rain/Take you down into the dark/She don’t feel no pain/But if I turn my back/Would you turn your eyes on them/Are you ready/Let the games begin.”  He goes on to sing of the woman in question in the song’s second verse, “She’s a one-of-a-kind/A storm within a name/A natural disaster/But I want her just the same.”  As with the EP’s opener, the style of Allen’s vocals and the song’s musical side together make this song sound like something right out of the 80s.  And again, that taken into consideration fans of that sound will welcome this song in with arms and ears wide open.

Both ‘Under My Skin’ and ‘Use It Or Lose It’ are impressive additions to the debut EP from Tempt. The third of the EP’s tracks, ‘The Fight’ instantly conjures thoughts of Journey and other more melodic rock bands of their time. Its forward-driving sound and infectious chorus of “It’s the fight that makes us stronger, baby/We both know you can see” will have audiences singing along in no time whether it be in their vehicle on the road or in their own living room/bedroom. Along with the previously noted songs, this song is just as much an arena anthem as them and the EP’s closing number. Allen and his band mates are seemingly singing about the fight that we have within ourselves to not give up. In this case, it seems to be the fight to not give up on a relationship. If that be the case, then the song takes quite the upbeat turn from so many songs rooted in relationship issues. It actually argues that there is hope for a relationship that would otherwise be broken. That and the song’s musical side together make this one of the EP’s best numbers. And together with the EP’s previously noted tracks, it makes the EP even more worth the listen especially by anyone that grew up a fan of the era of big hair and big rock. Audiences can listen to the title track from Under My Skin now via Tempt’s official website at http://www.temptband.com/#!listen/c1x9v.

Under My Skin can be purchased online via iTunes and Amazon.com or at the band’s next live performance. The band is next scheduled to perform live Friday, July 18th at the Knitting Factory in Brooklyn, New York. Audiences can keep up with the band’s tour schedule and all of the band’s latest news online both through its official website, http://www.temptband.com and its official Facebook page, http://www.facebook.com/TemptBand. Audiences can also keep up with the latest from the band through its Twitter page, http://twitter.com/temptband and its Reverb Nation website, http://www.reverbnation.com/temptband. To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Count Rebelution’s New LP As Another Of 2014’s Best Indie Albums

Courtesy:  Easy Star Records

Courtesy: Easy Star Records

Rebelution released its fourth full length studio effort this week.  Count Me In, the band’s latest album, is an equally impressive piece for any reggae fan regardless of one’s familiarity with the California-based quartet.  Eleven tracks comprise Rebelution’s new album.  Among the songs included on Count Me In are a handful of pieces that are rooted in the standard relationship issues.  The band also delves once again into the socially conscious roots of reggae on other tracks on the record, too.    One of the best of those socially conscious songs is ‘More Love.’ This song is especially important considering the state of the nation’s youth today. Another of those more socially conscious songs is the album’s penultimate track, ‘Against The Grain.’ And while it isn’t necessarily socially conscious ‘Roots Reggae’ pays homage to the socially conscious roots of the genre that has made the band a fan favorite. This trio of songs stands out most to this critic. But they aren’t the only songs that will impress listeners. There are eight more songs from which listeners will find their favorite(s) on this album. And in listening to said songs, audiences familiar and not so familiar with Rebelution’s music will agree that there is plenty to like about this record.

Rebelution has crafted an album in Count Me In that is just as good a first impression for new audiences as it is a re-introduction for those that are more familiar with the band’s body of work so far. One of the key pieces that stands out as proof of this is the socially conscious song ‘More Love.’ Front man Eric Rachmany sings in this song, “More love/That’s what we need to succeed/Not dollars/Not what we need/Let’s give them love/So the youth can achieve.” This critic’s interpretation of this chorus is one that says this nation’s youth need to be more loved, plain and simple. Maybe if kids were more loved, there wouldn’t be so many school shootings. Maybe there would be less bullying. Maybe kids wouldn’t be afraid to try and succeed. It may not necessarily be the message that the band was trying to send. If not, then apologies are in order to the band and its fans. Rachmany sings in the song’s second verse about looking in the mirror and seeing things more clearly. It serves to heighten the message of togetherness and support. Rachmany comes across as saying that if we see more clearly, we’ll have more empathy and more love. In turn, we’ll give that love to the next generation so that that generation can succeed where this generation failed. That socially conscious vibe isn’t relegated to just this one song, either.

Much as ‘More Love’ pays homage to the roots of reggae with its socially conscious lyrics, so does the album’s penultimate track, ‘Against The Grain.’ The song’s closing verse is the one that best highlights this. Rachmany sings in the song’s closing verse, “To power through and through it’s a constant struggle/But we got what it takes for sure to survive/Alright…well they same I’m out the game/It’s me against the grain/Come on rise.” He comes across as saying to listeners, don’t be afraid to stand tall and proud. We can survive no matter what people will say and do. Reggae is known for boasting positive lyrics of all kinds. It’s not all just protest music. It actually serves even more of a purpose. And this song in particular proves just that. Because it does, it makes Count Me In all the more enjoyable for listeners no matter how familiar audiences are with Rebelution.

‘More Love’ and ‘Against The Grain’ are both prime examples of Rebelution carrying on the long-held tradition of reggae presenting an important social conscience. There is at least one more track included in Count Me In that presents that conscience. It presents the conscience in question in a manner slightly different than that of the previously noted songs. The song in question is the aptly titled ‘Roots Reggae.’ The song harkens back to the days of Bob Marley with Rachmany singing, “We’re groovin’/Nothing like roots reggae music/Now turn it up/I wanna lose it/Nothin’ like roots reggae music/We’re groovin’/The rhymes of the music/It’s alright…You wanna jump/You wanna shout/You wanna stand/You wanna shout it all about/I let the owner know/The music got you, yeah.” It’s a celebration of the joy brought by the music. And the use of the keyboards, horns and drums to craft such a vintage sound makes the song all the more a celebration and joy to take in. Whether it be this song, one of the others mentioned here or those not mentioned, audiences will each find at least one reason to be *ahem* “counted” among those that call themselves fans after listening to this record.

Count Me In is available now in stores and online. It can be downloaded via iTunes at https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/count-me-in/id860352132.   The band is currently on tour in support of its new album. It will be in New York, New York tonight and at the House of Blues in Boston, MA tomorrow, June 12th. The band also has a performance at The Fillmore in Charlotte, North Carolina scheduled for June 20th. Tickets can be purchased for that show online at www.bandsintown.com/event/7925266/buy_tickets?affil_code=fb_29914385736&artist=Rebelution&came_from=128. Fans can see the band’s most current tour schedule and keep up with all of the latest news from the band online at http://www.facebook.com/rebelution and http://www.rebelutionmusic.com. To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.   Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Anchor Bay’s Born To Race Franchise Revs Up Again This Summer

Courtesy:  Anchor Bay Entertainment

Courtesy: Anchor Bay Entertainment

Born To Race: Fast Track, the latest movie in Anchor Bay Entertainment’s Born To Race franchise, will be released this summer. The movie stars Brett Davern and Beau Mirchoff, both of MTV’s Awkward. The pair star as small-town racing rivals Danny and Jake. The pair ends up being partnered together after summer scholarship to a top tier racing school. Danny also finds himself in a relationship with love interest played by Tiffany DuPont (Greek). Veteran actor Corben Bernsen (Psych, L.A. Law, Major League) co-stars along with Diogo Morgado (The Messenger, The Bible, Son of God), Grant Show (Devious Maids, Melrose Place, Private Practice, Big Love), and Sharon Lawrence (Rizzoli & Isles).

Director Alex Ranarivelo returns to helm this latest installment of the Born To Race franchise. He also directed the franchise’s previous film. He is joined by screenwriter Steve Sarno, who also crafted the script for the franchise’s previous film, and producer Ali Afshar. Afshar also produced the previous Born to Race film. He is also a professional race car driver.

Born To Race: Fast Track will be available for digital download via iTunes August 29th. It will be available on DVD, Blu-ray and OnDemand Tuesday, September 9th. The DVD will retail for SRP of $22.98 while the Blu-ray will retail for SRP of $26.99. More information on Born to Race: Fast Track is available online via Facebook and Twitter at http://www.facebook.com/BornToRaceMovie and http://twitter.com/borntoracemovie. More information on this and other releases from Anchor Bay Entertainment is available online at http://www.facebook.com/AnchorBay, http://www.anchorbayent.com and http://twitter.com/Anchor_Bay. To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Indie Pop/R&B Artist Chay Releases New Single

Courtesy:  Fresh Tracks Marketing

Courtesy: Fresh Tracks Marketing

Indie pop/R&B artist Chay recently released his new single, ‘Eternity’ to the masses.

‘Eternity’ comes from Chay’s upcoming sophomore album El Abrazo, which is due out this Fall. Audiences can check out the song online now at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4QeRp2Qf9Bo.  Chay wrote and co-wrote the lyrics for no fewer than twelve of the songs on his new album. He also sang both lead and background vocals and wrote the vocal arrangements for each of the album’s songs.

Audiences will be able to hear in Chay’s new album influences from major-name artists such as Patti LaBelle, Donnie Hathaway, Enrique Iglesias, Az, Tiwsta, Arcangel, and even Lil Kim. The album was produced by Rio Summers and others.

While audiences wait for the release of El Abrazo, they can download ‘Eternity’ now online via iTunes at https://itunes.apple.com/gw/album/eternity-single/id828061785. From there, audiences can get more information on Chay online at http://www.facebook.com/chay.is.life. To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

This Is Your Life Is Not Just Another Throw-Away Tribute Album

Courtesy:  Rhino Records

Courtesy: Rhino Records

Tribute albums are a dime a dozen. So many tribute albums are released each year that one can’t help but feel that the labels that release them care more about their bottom line than about actually celebrating said artists being given tribute. That being the case, one can’t help but wonder why This Is Your Life, the new tribute album to iconic rock front man Ronnie James Dio, would be any different from those records. The answer to that is not a simple one. One reason that this tribute album stands out is the list of performers and bands that recorded songs for the compilation. It’s a who’s who of hard rock from the past, present, and even future of the genre. Another reason that this compilation stands out is its track listing. This record boasts some of the most beloved songs of RJD’s career. And last but definitely not least important to consider in this record is the fact that it isn’t just a means for the label distributing it to make money. It actually doubles as a fundraiser for RJD’s Stand Up and Shout Cancer Fund. So it’s actually a record crafted to essentially help give back. How many bands, artists, groups, etc. can say that they have crafted an entire album simply to raise funds for charity? That–along with the list of songs and performers, bands, etc. on this album–makes This Is Your Life an album that stands well above the rest of the otherwise throw-away albums claiming to be tribute albums.

Courtesy:  Rhino Records

Courtesy: Rhino Records

The primary aspect of This Is Your Life that makes it stand out against all of the other tribute albums out there is the list of performers drafted to record songs for the record. The list of performers drafted for this record is a who’s who of hard rock’s past, present, and even future. It wasn’t just a mish-mash of bands, artists and groups tossed together. Everybody tapped to record for this tribute record is either a counterpart to RJD or someone that grew up idolizing him and his talents. Veterans such as Anthrax, Motorhead, Scorpions, Biff Byford, and Rob Halford perform alongside younger acts such as Adrenaline Mob, Killswitch Engage, and Halestorm over the course of the record’s fourteen total tracks. That collection of bands and artists singing Dio’s hits is in itself a musical history lesson. It introduces younger audiences that might be more familiar with the latter grouping of bands and artists to the veterans and to the music of Dio. To that extent, This Is Your Life quickly earns major points. Even more points come from the sampling of Dio’s music in question chosen for this compilation.

The list of bands, artists, and groups tapped to record RJD’s music for This Is Your Life is in itself a major boon for the record. As noted, it isn’t just a mish-mash of bands, artists, and groups. It is a collection of bands, group, and artists that played alongside Dio during his career, and those that have come since, growing up with the music of Ronnie James Dio. In short, it’s a collection of individuals that have the utmost respect for Dio and his music. Speaking of that music, the songs chosen to be included on this record are another part of the whole that makes it so enjoyable for listeners. Every song on this record is a classic in its own way. From the more well-known pieces such as ‘The Mob Rules’, ‘Neon Knights’ and ‘Holy Diver’ to slightly lesser known songs such as ‘Straight Through The Heart’, Egypt (The Chains Are On’, and ‘Temple of the King’ This Is Your Life does quite the job of chronicling the career of a man that was and is still even in death, one of the greatest vocalists and performers in the history of hard rock.

The music and performers chosen for This Is Your Life are both key components of the success of the album. As important as they are to the success of the record, there is still one central aspect of the recording that makes it so worth picking up. That aspect is the fact that a certain portion of the sales of the album will go to benefit Dio’s Stand Up and Shout Cancer Fund, which was established by Dio’s wife Wendy Dio. Bands, groups and artists go out on tour every year or they take part in fundraising concerts. How many artists can say they were part of a recording project that was also meant as a way to pay tribute to one of their own, too? It’s just like bringing home a hard rock festival without having to pay the exorbitant prices for tickets, souvenirs, sodas and more. And at the same time, audiences that purchase the album will actually be helping to fund an organization that works to research and promote awareness of cancer, as well as educate people about early detection in hopes of one day stopping it.

This Is Your Life is available now in stores and online. It can be ordered online via Amazon at http://www.amazon.com/Ronnie-James-Dio-This-Your/dp/B00IACUO8S/ref=sr_1_1?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1396440364&sr=1-1&keywords=dio+this+is+your+life and can be downloaded via iTunes at https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/ronnie-james-dio-this-is-your/id829325064.

More information on Ronnie James Dio, This Is Your Life and other RJD releases is available online at http://www.facebook.com/OfficialRonnieJamesDio and http://www.ronniejamesdio.com. To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

‘Bitter’ Is A Solid Intro To Atmosphere’s Upcoming LP

Courtesy:  Rhymesayers Records

Courtesy: Rhymesayers Records

Minneapolis, MN based hip-hop duo Atmosphere will release its latest album Southsiders through Rhymesayers Records Tuesday, May 6th.  In anticipation of the album’s release, the duo (MC Sean “Slug” Daley and producer Anthony “Ant” Davis) has released the album’s debut single ‘Bitter.’  The single is a great first impression for anyone that is new to the duo’s music.

‘Bitter’ is a great first impression for audiences that might be new to the music of Atmosphere first and foremost because it is clean. What’s more, it’s not about drugs and alcohol and doesn’t objectify women.  Yet it still has some serious bite.  That is something that is rare in today’s rap and hip-hop industry.  So any radio programmers that might have this single but have yet to check it out should take this into account and give it a chance.  What’s more, the song could be argued to be a battle rap of sorts.  As the song’s title hints, it is about a friendship that has become broken between two individuals.  What’s most interesting in the song is that Daley’s subject that is speaking isn’t even sure what has caused his former friend to become so hateful toward him.  He writes in the song’s lead verse, “Everything used to be so good then/Now it seems like you’re mad at my footprints/I’m only tryin’ to scribble in the book, man.”  There’s a lot of venom in this line.  But it’s justified venom.  Daley’s bite gets even sharper as that opening verse progresses.

As the opening verse progresses, listeners hear Daley’s attitude blatantly change.  It changes from a point of confusion over the situation to more of a confident, defensive attitude.  He doesn’t allow his subject (himself?) to remain the victim.  His subject becomes more empowered, telling his former friend, “It’s not my fault you’re hurting/You must have a lot of free time/Otherwise, why you tryin’ to see mine/Strain ya neck/Let the blame project/Don’t give yourself the same respect/So independent but undependable/We’re all gettin’ old/So take a mental note/And  stop being so covetous/The crime is the punishment/Now run and get a sliver of dignity/You ain’t gotta be a figure of misery/You don’t want to be a victim to victory/Listenin’ to a bittersweet symphony.  His subject is telling that former friend, “Hey, We’re getting older.  Stop being this way.  You’re only hurting yourself! So grow up and stop being so immature!”  This is one hundred percent relatable for any listener.  Who out there hasn’t been in the situation of having a friend that turned on them and started hating them without any explanation whatsoever?  That ability of the song to relate to its listeners is the starting point of what makes the song an excellent first choice for Atmosphere’s upcoming album.  Just as important to the song is its musical side.

The musical side of ‘Bitter’ makes the song an excellent opener for Southsiders because of how well it complements the song’s biting lyrics.  The keyboard line is the starting point of what makes the song’s musical side work.  The keyboard line is an arpeggio of sorts.  The arpeggio is in a minor key.  That minor key adds a certain emotion to the lyrics in itself.  The equally strong bass line makes for an excellent counterpoint to the keyboard part.  The bass line uses more notes than the keyboard part.  But looking at the song from the vantage point of composition, the solid four-count of the bass line’s whole notes actually accents the eighth notes of the keyboard line.  The specific notes of the bass line counter the keyboard line perfectly, too making the two feel even more like one whole.  Add in a chorus comprised solely of low voices at the song’s end, and the song as a whole ends up sticking in listeners’ ears and minds just as easily as anything that is on mainstream hip-hop radio today.

‘Bitter’ can be heard now online via YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MQuXxQwungE&feature=youtu.be.  Fans can pre-order Southsiders now at http://fifthelementonline.com/collections/atmosphere-southsiders-pre-order and https://itunes.apple.com/album/southsiders-deluxe-version/id828734533.  Audiences can hear ‘Bitter’ and more songs from Southsiders Saturday, April 26th at the University of Vermont’s Springfest 2014 in Burlington, Vermont.  The duo is scheduled to take the stage at 1pm ET.  More information on Atmosphere’s upcoming album and live events is available online at http://www.facebook.com/Atmosphere, http://twitter.com/atmosphere, and http://rhymesayers.com/atmosphere.  To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Count On Count Me In! To Be One Of 2014’s Best Children’s Albums

Courtesy:  Waldmania PR/Little Rockers Music

Courtesy: Waldmania PR/Little Rockers Music

The Little Rockers Band is back with yet another fun, family friendly record in Count Me In!, the band’s latest release.  The new album, the band’s second, is certain to have young listeners on their feet in no time flat and keep them dancing right to the end of the album’s closer.  The album’s musical and lyrical mix is one more that proves that more often than not, children’s albums actually bear more originality and creativity than even any album for grown-ups.  Not convinced?  The band’s twist on Old McDonald puts Mick Jagger in the place of the beloved elderly farmer in ‘Old Mick Jagger.’  And the Country-Western feel of ‘Wild Wild West’ will take young listeners back to the days of cowboys traversing the open plains.  If that’s still not enough to convince listeners, ‘Morning Train’ will do just the trick.  Just like ‘Wild Wild West’ it will entertain young listeners both for its musical and lyrical content.  There are plenty of other songs from which parents, teachers, and students can choose on this album as proof of what makes it so enjoyable.  They will be able to do so when the album is released nationwide on April 15th.

Most young listeners likely don’t have the slightest clue as to the identity of The Rolling Stones front man Mick Jagger.  That being the case, one can’t help but applaud the husband and wife duo of Chris and Jessie Apple for including the song, ‘Old Mick Jagger’ on this latest release.  It is just one example of the duo’s continued originality on its sophomore release.  Chris and Jessie—and their band mates Liam Moroney (lead guitar) and Billy Papenberg (drums)—replace everybody’s favorite elderly farmer with ever y rock purist’s favorite front man.  Jessie sings in the song, set to the tune of ‘Old McDonald’, Old Mick Jagger had a band/yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah/And in his band he had a guitar/yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah/With a strum strum here/And a strum strum there/yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah.  Of course the song continues on in this fashion until each member of the band is covered.  Kids will love it because it is all set to the classic children’s tune.  Parents will love the inclusion of the guitar riff from the Stones’ hit song, ‘(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction’ and the kid friendly lyrics.  It’s a wonderful way to get young listeners started early on as fans of the single greatest band in the modern history of rock.  No other children’s act out there today has done what The Little Rockers Band has done here.   And it serves to prove even more just how original this record stands.

If ‘Old Mick Jagger’ doesn’t convince listeners as to the originality and creativity of The Little Rockers Band on its new record, maybe ‘Wild Wild West’ will win over some listeners.  This song will take listeners of any age back to a better time.  It will take them back to a time of cowboys and cowgirls riding the open plains, blue skies and stars over their heads instead of massive skyscrapers.  Chris Apple perfectly paints the picture of that age along with this band mates, singing, “If I could be whatever I choose/I think I’d like to be/A cowboy from the wild wild west/Nothing to lose/My trusty steed and me/No fences/No match upon my vest/I’d like to find a happy home that’s right for me.”  Jessie follows singing about the joys of being a cowgirl in the Wild Wild West.  The whole time, the band offers listeners an old school almost Gene Autry style country western musical vibe.  The two together make this song another wonderful addition to The Little Rockers Band’s new album.

Both ‘Wild Wild West’ and ‘Old Mick Jagger’ exhibit the creativity and originality of The Little Rockers Band on its new album.  There is at least one more example of that originality and creativity that listeners will love on this album.  That song is ‘Morning Train.’  The song’s semi-rockabilly feel and lyrics make the song a complete joy.  Mr. and Mrs. Apple sing about the sights and sounds of a train station early in the morning.  From the sound of the trains’ whistles to the trains clickety-clacking in and out of the station to the hustle and bustle on the platform, it’s all there.  The duo paints a vivid picture of a single day at a train station with its words alone. The Apples’ band mates add their own touch to the song, too.  The rhythm of guitarist Liam Moroney makes the musical picture even more vivid.  His driving energy helps to make seeing the trains coming and going even easier.  Drummer Billy Papenberg works with Moroney to make the visual even clearer.  Altogether, The Little Rockers Band show once more in this song just how creative and original it is once more.  There are many more songs throughout this record that exhibit the band’s creativity and originality.  Listeners will get to hear them for themselves when the band releases its new album April 15th.  It can be ordered online via Amazon, iTunes, and the band’s official website, http://www.LittleRockersMusic.com.  Listeners can also go to the band’s official website to check out all the latest news from the band, as well as sign up for classes and more.

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Billy Ray Cyrus Appearing On E!’s ‘Chelsea Lately’ Tonight

Country music star Billy Ray Cyrus will appear on E!’s Chelsea Lately tonight.

Courtesy:  MSO PR

Courtesy: MSO PR

Cyrus will present his new single ‘Achy Breaky Heart PT. 2’ and its companion video when he makes his appearance tonight at 11pm.  The new single is, for those that haven’t yet heard, a hip-hop re-mix of the song that made Cyrus a star in the early 1990s.  The video for the new re-mix, featuring hip-hop star Buck 22, is available online via YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=72WhEqeS6AQ.

billyraycyrus_hopeisjustahead_cover_small

Courtesy: MSO PR

Along with his new re-mix, Cyrus has another single currently playing at radio stations across the country called ‘Hope is Just Ahead.’  The song features veteran R&B vocalist Dionne Warwick.  The song was recorded at Jamie Foxx’s L.A. studio.  A portion of the proceeds from sales of the single will go to benefit the “Do The Write Thing-National Campaign To Stop Violence.”  The campaign’s aim is to help promote peaceful living among young people across the country.  The video for the single can be viewed via YouTube now at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jyQfyMIH5Uk.

More information on Billy Ray Cyrus is available online at http://www.facebook.com/BillyRayCyrus and http://www.billyraycyrus.com.  His new album Change My Mind can be downloaded now via iTunes at https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/change-my-mind-radio-edit/id556706143 and ordered via Amazon at http://www.amazon.com/Change-Mind-Billy-Ray-Cyrus/dp/B0093QZ0P2/ref=sr_1_1_title_0_main?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1382385004&sr=1-1&keywords=billy+ray+cyrus+change+my+mind.

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Hawthorne Heights Announces Special Anniversary Tour

Courtesy:  Earshot Media

Courtesy: Earshot Media

Ten years ago, seminal indie-rock band Hawthorne Heights released what remains one of its most talked about albums today in The Silence in Black and White.  That landmark album sold the most first-week copies of any album in the history of Victory Records.  ‘Ohio Is For Lovers’ and ‘Niki FM’, both singles from that album, went on to major success. They helped push the band to the edge of major mainstream success.  The combined sales of the band’s singles and album in whole made The Silence in Black and White the model for almost every emo band that has come along since.

In celebration of the anniversary of that album’s release, the members of Hawthorne Heights have announced that the band will hit the road for a ten-year anniversary The Silence in Black and White World Tour.  The first leg of the tour kicks off April 8th in Dublin, Ireland.  Tour dates for the North American, Asian and Australian leg of the tour will be announced at a later date.  As a thank you to its fans for their support, the band’s members also announced that it will perform The Silence in Black and White in its entirety at each show throughout its tour.

Fans can go online now to the band’s official website, http://www.hawthorneheights.com to sign-up for all of the latest tour updates and to get a free re-worked acoustic version of a Hawthorne Heights classic and the band’s latest single, ‘Spark.’  ‘Spark’ comes from the band’s latest album ZERO. VIP packages for the band’s upcoming world tour are available now.  However, they are in limited quantities.  Zero can be downloaded now via iTunes at https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/id659261893 and via Amazon at http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_1_17?url=search-alias%3Ddigital-music&field-keywords=hawthorne+heights+zero&sprefix=hawthorne+heights%2Cdigital-music%2C225.  More information on the band’s upcoming tour, its new album and more is available online at http://www.facebook.com/HawthorneHeights.  To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Black Label Society Tapped To Headline Revolver Golden Gods Tour

Courtesy: eOne

Courtesy: eOne

Veteran hard rock band Black Label Society has been tapped to headline this year’s annual Revolver Golden Gods Tour presented by Epiphone.  The announcement comes only weeks after the announcement that the band—fronted by legendary guitarist/vocalist Zakk Wylde—will release its latest album Catacombs of the Black Vatican April 8th.

This year’s Revolver Golden Gods tour presented by Epiphone spans thirty-two cities.  It kicks off Wednesday, April 16th in Seattle, Washington and winds down Saturday, June 7th at the home of Black Label Society, Los Angeles California.  The complete Revolver Golden Gods Tour presented by Epiphone schedule is listed below.

Wed/Apr-16  Seattle, WA @ Showbox Sodo
Thu/Apr-17  Portland, OR @ Roseland
Fri/Apr-18  Boise, ID @ Knitting Factory Concert House
Sat/Apr-19  Missoula, MT @ Wilma Theater
Mon/Apr-21  Billings, MT @ Shrine Auditorium
Fri/Apr-25  Milwaukee, WI @ The Rave
Sat/Apr-26  Nashville, TN @ Marathon Music Works
Tue/Apr-29  Ybor City, FL (Tampa) @ The Ritz
Wed/Apr-30  Lake Buena Vista, FL @ House of Blues
Fri/May-02  Birmingham, AL @ Iron City
Sun/May-04  Silver Spring, MD @ Fillmore
Mon/May-05  Clifton Park, NY (Albany) @ Northern Lights
Wed/May-07  Philadelphia, PA @ Electric Factory
Thu/May-08  Worcester, MA @ The Palladium
Fri/May-09  Sayreville, NJ @ Starland Ballroom
Sat/May-10  New York, NY @ Best Buy Theater
Mon/May-12  Norfolk, VA @ Norva
Tue/May-13  Stroudsburg, PA @ Sherman Theater
Thu/May-15  Pittsburgh, PA @ Stage AE
Sat/May-17  Ft. Wayne, IN @ Piere’s
Mon/May-19  Sioux Falls, SD @ The District
Tue/May-20   Chicago, IL @ House of Blues
Wed/May-21  St. Paul, MN (Minneapolis) @ Myth
Fri/May-23  Grand Prairie, TX (Dallas) @ Verizon Theater
Tue/May-27  New Orleans, LA @ House of Blues
Wed/May-28  Houston, TX @ House of Blues
Sun/Jun-01  Denver, CO @ Ogden Theater
Mon/Jun-02  Salt Lake City, UT @ The Complex – Rockwell
Wed/Jun-04  Tempe, AZ @ Marquee Theater
Thu/Jun-05  Las Vegas, NV @ Brooklyn Bowl
Fri/Jun-06  San Francisco, CA @ Regency Ballroom
Sat/Jun-07  Los Angeles, CA @ Fonda Theater

Along with its upcoming headlining spot on the Revolver Golden Golds Tour presented by Epiphone, Black Label Society will also present its own thirteen-city Canadian tour.  That tour will feature the band performing some somewhat stripped down versions of its hits as well as songs from Wylde’s solo album, Book of Shadows.

‘My Dying Time’, the lead single from BLS’ upcoming album, can be downloaded now via iTunes.  It can be downloaded at https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/my-dying-time-single/id798941029.  The album in its entirety can be pre-ordered via iTunes at https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/catacombs-black-vatican-deluxe/id799689367?ls=1.  The album’s track listing is available below.

01. Fields Of Unforgiveness
02. My Dying Time
03. Believe
04. Angel Of Mercy
05. Heart Of Darkness
06. Beyond The Down
07. Scars
08. Damn The Flood
09. I’ve Gone Away
10. Empty Promises
11. Shades Of Gray
12. Dark Side Of The Sun (bonus track)
13. The Nomad (bonus track)

More information on Black Label Society’s upcoming album and tours is available online at http://www.zakkwylde.com, http://twitter.com/zakkwyldebls, http://www.facebook.com/zakkwylde and http://www.facebook.com/blacklabelsociety.  To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.