Anthrax’s ‘Kings Among Scotland’ Is A Royally Good Recording

Courtesy: Megaforce Records

The wait is finally over for Anthrax’s new live recording.

Kings Among Scotland arrived in stores and online today via Megaforce Records.  Originally recorded February 15, 2017 at the Barrowland Ballroom in Glasgow, Scotland, the two-set, 19-song set list includes hits such as ‘Madhouse,’ ‘I Am The Law,’ ‘Breathing Lightning,’ ‘Indians’ and other songs.  Available also on CD and digital formats, the recording also features interviews, behind-the-scenes footage, and more.

Anthrax drummer Charlie Benante said in a recent interview that he was happy to finally have the recording available.

“We are so excited that our DVD is finally being released,” Benante said.  “Don’t be surprised if the package is vibrating and dripping with sweat when you open it…that’s how live and exciting it really is!”

Front man Frank Bello agreed.

“This was such an amazing experience for us,” Bello said.  “The video is so alive and intense that even from the first edit, I felt like I was ‘right there’ at the show, in the audience.”

The release of King’s Among Scotland is only one of the band’s big announcements.  The band will join Slayer on its farewell tour this spring and summer.  It also has a handful of dates with Testament scheduled.  The band’s full, current tour schedule is noted below.

LEG ONE (Slayer, Lamb of God, Anthrax, Behemoth, Testament)

MAY

22   Bell MTS Place, Winnipeg, MB

23   Sanctuary Events Center, Fargo, ND – Anthrax w/ Testament

24   The Armory, Minneapolis, MN   SOLD OUT

25   Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre, Tinley Park, IL

26   Clyde theatre, Ft. Wayne, IN – Anthrax w/ Testament

27   Michigan Lottery Amphitheatre at Freedom Hill, Detroit, MI   SOLD OUT

29   Budweiser Stage, Toronto, ON   SOLD OUT

30   Place Bell, Montreal, PQ   SOLD OUT

JUNE

 1    Mohegan Sun Arena, Uncasville, CT   SOLD OUT

 2    PNC Bank Arts Center, Holmdel, NJ

 4    Santander Arena, Reading, PA   SOLD OUT

 6    Riverbend Music Center, Cincinnati, OH

 8    International, Knoxville, TN – Anthrax w/ Testament

 7    Blossom Music Center, Cleveland, OH

 9    KeyBank Pavilion, Pittsburgh, PA

10   Jiffy Lube Live, Bristow, VA

12   Veteran’s United Home Loans  Amphitheater, Virginia Beach, VA

13   The Stage on the Bay, Savannah, GA – Anthrax w/ Testament

14   PNC Music Pavilion, Charlotte, NC

15   Orlando Amphitheater, Orlando, FL

17   Smart Financial Centre at Sugar Land, Houston, TX   SOLD OUT

18   House of Blues, New Orleans, LA – Anthrax w/ Testament

19   The Bomb Factory, Dallas, TX   SOLD OUT

20   Austin360 Amphitheater, Austin, TX  SOLD OUT

LEG TWO  (Slayer, Lamb of God, Anthrax, Testament, Napalm Death)

JULY

26   Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion, Gilford, NH

27   Impact Music Festival, Darling’s Waterfront Pavilion, Bangor, ME

29   Northwell Health at Jones Beach, Wantagh, NY

31   The Pavilion at Montage Mountain, Scranton, PA

AUGUST

 1    Times Union Center, Albany, NY

 2    The Strand, Providence, RI  – Anthrax w/ Testament ADDED SHOW

 3    Darien Lake Performing Arts Center, Darien Lake, NY

 4    Lakeview Amphitheater, Syracuse, NY

 6    Budweiser Gardens, London, ON

 7    Van Andel Arena, Grand Rapids, MI

 9    Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre, St. Louis, MO

10   Cellairis Amphitheatre at Lakewood, Atlanta, GA

12   Municipal Auditorium, Nashville, TN

13   Walmart AMP, Rogers, AR

14   Gas Monkey, Dallas, TX  – Anthrax w/ Testament ADDED SHOW

15   Freeman Coliseum, San Antonio, TX

16   The Zoo Amphitheatre, Oklahoma City, OK

18   Fiddler’s Green Amphitheatre, Denver, CO

19   USANA Amphitheatre, Salt Lake City, UT

20   Wilma theatre, Missoula, MT – Anthrax w/ Testament ADDED SHOW

21   Ford Idaho Center Amphitheater, Boise, ID

23   Sunlight Supply Amphitheater, Portland, OR

26   SAP Center, San Jose, CA

More information on Anthrax’s tour, its new live recording and more is available online now along with all of the band’s latest news and more at:

 

Websitehttp://anthrax.com

Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/anthrax

Twitterhttp://twitter.com/anthrax

 

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 https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

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Palmer, BMG Partner For New ELP Legacy Live Recording

Courtesy: BMG

Emerson Lake & Palmer drummer Carl Palmer will release a new live recording next month.

ELP Legacy Live is currently scheduled to be released June 29 via BMG.  Scheduled to be released on a 2CD/DVD combo pack, the recording presents performances from New York and Miami.

The CD platform presents a performance by Palmer’s ELP Legacy project originally recorded November 25, 2015 at Tralf Music Hall in New York.  It includes performances of ‘Tarkus,’ ‘Knife-Edge,’ ’21st Century Schizoid Man’ and many others.

The DVD presentation features a performance by the band originally recorded June 24, 2016 in at the Olympia Theater in Miami, Florida.  A tribute to late ELP member Keith Emerson, it includes appearances by special guests: Steve Hackett (Genesis), Mark Stein (Vanilla Fudge) and David Frangioni.  The show’s set list includes performances of ‘Jerusalem,’ ‘Barbarian,’ ‘Karn Evil 9’ and many others.

The full track listing for each platform is noted below.

Tracklist

CD: TRALF MUSIC HALL BUFFALO, NEW YORK, U.S.A., 25TH NOVEMBER 2014
Rondeau Des Indes Galantes / Ride Of The Valkyries
Toccata and Fugue in D Minor
Mars, The God Of War / 21st Century Schizoid Man
Tarkus (Full Version)
America
Knife-Edge
Trilogy (Short Version)
CD running time: 48 mins. CD album previously unavailable digitally

DVD: PICTURES AT AN EXHIBITION – A TRIBUTE TO KEITH EMERSON. OLYMPIA THEATER, MIAMI, FLORIDA, U.S.A., 24TH JUNE 2016. SPECIAL GUESTS: STEVE HACKETT, MARK STEIN
& DAVID FRANGIONI 

1.    Introduction
2.    Peter Gunn
3.    Karn Evil 9 (Welcome Back My Friends)
4.    The Barbarian
5.    Bitches Crystal
6.    Jerusalem
7.    Romeo & Juliet
8.    21st Century Schizoid Man
9.    Clair De Lune
10.    Knife-Edge
11.    Hoedown
12.    Take A Pebble
13.    Carmina Burana
14.    Pictures At An Exhibition
15.    Fanfare For The Common Man / Drum Solo
16.    Nutrocker

Bonus footage:
17.    Behind The Scenes At The Tribute For Keith Emerson

DVD running time: 2hrs 4 mins

More information on Carl Palmer’s ELP Legacy Project is available online now along with all of the group’s latest news and more at:

 

Website: http://www.carlpalmer.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/CarlFPalmer

Twitter: http://twitter.com/ELP_Carl

 

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 https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

 

‘The Honey Games’ Is A “Sweet” New Addition To Studio 100’s ‘Maya The Bee’ Franchise

Courtesy: Shout! Factory Kids/Shout! Factory

Maya the Bee is back on Blu-ray with a brand new adventure that is certain to have viewers of all ages *ahem* buzzing courtesy of Shout! Factory and Studio 100.  The adventure, Maya The Bee 2 comes a little more than two years after the release of its predecessor, Maya The Bee, which was also released via Shout! Factory and Studio 100.  While it likely will not be unfamiliar to many audiences in its approach, this installment in the Maya The Bee franchise is still a story that is certain to entertain and engage viewers of all ages.  That story is one part of what makes the movie worth at least one watch.  The bonus material included with the movie adds to its entertainment, showing even more why this movie is worth seeing.  The work of the movie’s cast plays its own part in the movie’s presentation, too, and will be discussed a little later on.  Each element noted here is important in its own way to the whole of Maya The Bee 2.  All things considered, they make Maya The Bee 2 a work that is certain to bring the whole family together, and in turn have viewers of all ages buzzing about this new animated feature.

Shout! Factory and Studio 100’s new animated import Maya The Bee 2 is another enjoyable entry in the bigger story of the little bee who could.  It is definitely worth at least one watch.  That is due in no small part to the story at the center of the movie. Many viewers may find that the movie at the center of the movie is not exactly unfamiliar.  It is, at its core, an underdog tale centered on a competition that will decide the fate of two groups.  In the case of this story, Maya and an unlikely group of ragtag misfits join together to defeat Violet and her friends so that Maya’s colony won’t have to sacrifice what little honey it has in a thin summer season.  As expected Violet and her friends at first prove problematic for Maya and Team Poppy.  That’s because of her villainous ways, including playing with the emotions of Maya’s best friend.  As the story progresses, Violet of course learns her lesson and finally does the right thing, leading to a happy ending for all that includes Violet and Maya becoming friends.  It’s anything but new in regards to the overall plot.  Audiences have seen this already in the likes of Disney’s Pixie Hollow Games (one of its many Tinkerbell specials), Monsters University, Revenge of the Nerds and other similar movies and TV specials.  Through it all are the common discussions on friendship, fair play and family that are tied in to the story’s secondary coming-of-age plot.  That secondary plot sees Maya growing as she navigates the situation.  That growth plays directly into the main plot, and in turn shows even more why the movie’s story, while not unfamiliar, is still reason enough for families to see it at least once.  It is only one part of what makes Maya The Bee 2 an interesting watch.  The bonus material that is included in the movie’s presentation strengthens that presentation even more.

The bonus material included with Maya The Bee 2’s home release is the standard fare, much as with its story – a behind-the-scenes making of featurette that shows how the movie came to life.  Yet, it does its own share to entertain viewers and keep them engaged.  The making of featurette gives viewers a glimpse into the process of the movie’s creation, from the importance of lining up the sound effects (and using the proper tools to create the sound effects) to the time and effort put into making the movie look as realistic as possible and more.  It only runs roughly 20 minutes at the most, yet those discussions and the discussion on the very motivation for the movie’s creation come together the add even more reason for families to watch the movie.  That’s because of the added appreciation that they create for the movie overall.  Even with that added appreciation in mind, the noted elements are still not the last of the movie’s most important elements.  The work of the movie’s cast is important in its own right to the movie’s presentation, too.

The work of the movie’s cast is important to note because while it is voice over work, it still requires its own share of effort and time.  Luckily, that time and effort paid off, especially for lead voice actor Coco Jack Gillies (Mad Max: Fury Road, The evil’s Playground, Oddball and the Penguins), the voice of Maya.  Whether in her happier moments or her more emotional moments, Gillies makes Maya a wholly sympathetic character for whom audiences will have no problem rooting.  Case in point is the movie’s climax, in which Maya admits to the Queen (Justine Clark – Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome, Look Both Ways, Danny Deckchair) and to the Empress (Marny McQueen – Son of the Mask, The Mule, Bogan Pride) that she had disrespected each character, and in turn dishonored them.  The humility that Gillies establishes in her delivery makes this moment one of the movie’s most memorable and engaging.  That’s because of Gillies’ ability to make audiences believe her performance.  A happier moment such as that when the Empress initially invites Maya to the games, is just as believable.  Gillies’ cast mates do their own part in making the movie engaging, too.  Linda Ngo (Top of the Lake, The Furies, Mako Mermaids) is just as enjoyable as the despicable and spoiled Violet.  She brings to her performance, a certain something that makes audiences love to hate Violet.  That is a tribute to Ngo’s work.  Even as Violet has her change of heart, Ngo makes that moment believable even as predictable as it was.  Benson Jack Anthony (800 Words, Emo The Musical, High Life) does a good job in his own right, too, even though Willi, Maya’s “sidekick” is not on screen but so much.  Anthony makes the most of each appearance, making viewers applaud him, too.  His performance gives plenty of hope for his future regardless of whether it is in voice work or actually on screen.  Taking into account each of these performances and those not more directly discussed, the whole of the cast’s work proves to do just as much for Maya The Bee 2 as its story and bonus material.  When all three elements are joined together, they make Maya the Bee a movie that is sure to have the whole family *ahem* buzzing.

Studio 100’s latest entry in its Maya The Bee franchise, The Honey Games is a surprisingly *sweet* new addition to the series in both senses of the word.  That is due in part to a story that while not unfamiliar, still gives the story a new life in its dual plot.  The bonus material included with the movie adds a certain extra depth to the story and its presentation.  The work of the movie’s cast – both main and support – ensures in its own way, too, audiences engagement and entertainment.  Each element is important in its own right to the whole of Maya The Bee 2.  All things considered, they make this movie a work that will have the whole family *buzzing.* More information on this and other titles from Shout! Factory is available online now at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.shoutfactory.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/shoutfactoryofficial

Twitter: http://twitter.com/ShoutFactory

 

 

 

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 https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Mellencamp’s New Live Recording Is Available Now

Courtesy: Eagle Rock Entertainment

John Mellencamp has a new live recording in stores.

The veteran musician released his new recording Plain Spoken: From the Chicago Theatre May 11.  The recording, which was originally broadcast online via Netflix, is available now on DVD/CD combo pack, Blu-ray/CD combo pack and digital download.

The original presentation included the concert along with audio commentary from Mellencamp, in which he reflects on his life and career.  This new home release includes not only that take on the concert, but also a concert sans commentary along with bonus CD.  The 16-song set list pulls from various points in Mellencamp’s career and includes hits such as ‘Rain on the Scarecrow,’ ‘Paper in Fire,’ ‘My Soul’s Got Wings’ and others.

The concert’s full set list is noted below

  1. Lawless Times
  2. Troubled Man
  3. Minutes To Memories
  4. Small Town
  5. Stones In My Passway
  6. Pop Singer
  7. Check It Out
  8. Longest Days
  9. The Full Catastrophe
  10. My Soul’s Got Wings
  11. Overture
  12. Rain On The Scarecrow
  13. Paper in Fire
  14. Authority Song
  15. Pink House
  16. Cherry Bomb

Audiences can get a preview of the concert online now as Mellencamp’s performance of ‘My Soul’s Got Wings’ (ft. Carlene Carter) is streaming online now here.

More information on Plain Spoken: From The Chicago Theatre is available online now along with all of John Mellencamp’s latest news and more at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.mellencamp.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/JohnMellencamp

Twitter: http://twitter.com/johnmellencamp

 

 

 

More information on this and other titles from Eagle Rock Entertainment is available online now at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.eagle-rock.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/EagleRockEnt

Twitter: http://twitter.com/EagleRockNews

 

 

 

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 https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Eagle Rock Entertainment Announces Release Date, Specs For New Norah Jones Live Recording

Courtesy: Eagle Rock Entertainment/ Eagle Vision

Norah Jones has a new live recording on the way.

The veteran performer is scheduled to release her new recording Live at Ronnie Scott’s June 15 via Eagle Rock Entertainment.  It will be available on separate DVD, Blu-ray and digital presentations. Pre-orders are available now.

Recorded over the course of a 4-night stint at London’s famed Ronnie Scott’s club this past September, the 16-song set lifts liberally from Jones’ most recent album, Daybreak.  The show’s full set list is noted below.

Live at Ronnie Scott’s track listing:

1. Sleeping Wild
2. Don’t Be Denied
3. After The Fall
4. Sinkin’ Soon
5. Out On The Road
6. And Then There Was You
7. It’s A Wonderful Time For Love
8. Fleurette Africaine (African Flower)
9. Flipside
10. Day Breaks
11. Nightingale
12. Tragedy
13. Little Broken Hearts
14. Carry On
15. Don’t Know Why
16. I’ve Got To See You Again

Along with the extensive set list, the concert also includes a handful of bonuses including an in-depth pre-show interview with Jones and the bonus song, ‘Burn.’

More information on Jones’ new live recording is available online now along with all of her latest news and more at:

 

Website: http://www.norahjones.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/norahjones

Twitter: http://twitter.com/NorahJones

 

More information on this and other titles from Eagle Rock Entertainment is available online now at:

 

Website: http://www.eagle-rock.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/EagleRockEnt

Twitter: http://twitter.com/EagleRockNews

 

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 https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

 

Five Finger Death Punch Debuts ‘Sham Pain’ Video

Courtesy: Prospect Park

The wait is finally over for Five Finger Death Punch’s ‘Sham Pain’ video!

Only days from the scheduled release of the band’s new album And Justice For None, the band has debuted the video for the single, whose audio portion was just recently debuted.  The video is streaming now via Vevo.

The band’s video treatment for ‘Sham Pain’ is a light-hearted approach to everything everything that the band has gone through in the past year or so.  As guitarist Zoltan Bathory explained in a recent interview, “‘Sham Pain’ is a lyrical snapshot of probably the most chaotic, yet the biggest year of our career,” Bathory said.  “So far, we’ve come out of every bear attack relatively un-scraped, and the band is tighter than ever.  Life is not so difficult if you don’t take yourself so seriously.  As long as you can find the humor in everything, you are winning, and the winning is strong with this video as it follows the footsteps of our NOscar-winning masterpiece ‘Jekyll and Hyde.’  it was a simple process: We lit the set on fire and then made our poor director Rob Anderson’s artistic sense into a pinata.  Whatever he could salvage became the music video.”

While probably not fully intended to come across as such, the video also comes across as a farce of so many Limp Bizkit videos, which is sure to entertain audiences even more.

‘Sham Pain’ peaked at #2 on iTunes Metal Chart following its debut April 20.  It debuted inside the Top 10 on the U.S. Rock Songs Chart, and has received more than 2 million streams over the course of its first two weeks charting.  At last report, it was at #35 on the Active Rock Airplay Chart, only a week from the official release of And Justice For None.

‘Gone Away,’ the band’s cover of the hit Offspring song, which was included in the band’s hits collection A Decade of Destruction, remains at #5 on Active Rock radio.  it has received over 30 million streams and has sold over 100,000 downloads since its premiere.

In anticipation of next week’s release of And Justice For None, Five Finger Death Punch has launched a tour in support of the album.  The tour launched May 10 in Tulsa, Olkahoma and currently runs through September 9 in Cleveland, Ohio,  Nothing More and Bad Wolves are sharing time as support for the tour, which is co-produced by Live Nation and Frank Productions.

The band’s current tour schedule is noted below.  Tickets and VIP packages can be purchased here.

Catch FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH on tour in the following cities:
5FDP / Shinedown Spring U.S. Tour Dates
5/10/18 – BOK Center – Tulsa, OK
5/11/18 – Westfair Amphitheatre – Council Bluffs, IA
5/12/18 – Eagles Ballroom – Milwaukee, WI *
5/14/18 – Salem Civic Center – Salem, VA
5/16/18 – Legacy Arena – Birmingham, AL
5/17/18 – Ford Center– Evansville, IN
5/18/18 – Mark of the Quad – Moline, IL
5/20/18 – Alerus Center – Grand Forks, ND
5/30/18 – Casper Events Center – Casper, WY
Five Finger Death Punch
5/29/18 – Red Rocks Amphitheater – Morrison, CO
6/1/18 – Deadwood Mountain Grand Hotel – Deadwood, SD
6/2/18 – KQRC Rockfest – Kansas City, MO
6/14-6/16– Montebello Rockfest – Montebello, SC
Five Finger Death Punch + Breaking Benjamin Summer Tour Dates:
* – 5fdp & Bad Wolves only/ ** – 5fdp, Breaking Benjamin & Bad Wolves only
7/16/18 – White River Amphitheatre – Seattle, WA **
7/18/18 – Spokane Arena – Spokane, WA **
7/20/18 – Taco Bell Arena – Boise, ID
7/21/18 – USANA Amphitheatre – Salt Lake City, UT
7/24/18 – Shoreline Amphitheatre – San Francisco, CA
7/25/18 – Mattress Firm Amphitheatre – San Diego, CA
7/27/18 – FivePoint Amphitheater – Irvine, CA
7/29/18 – Isleta Amphitheater – Albuquerque, NM **
8/1/18 – Austin360 Amphitheater – Austin, TX
8/3/18 – Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion – Houston, TX **
8/4/18 – Starplex Pavilion – Dallas, TX
8/6/18 – BankPlus Amphitheater at Snowden Grove – Southaven, MS
8/7/18 – Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre – St. Louis, MO
8/9/18 – Heritage Park Amphitheatre – Simpsonville, SC
8/11/18 – MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre – Tampa, FL
8/12/18 – Verizon Amphitheatre – Atlanta, GA
8/14/18 – KeyBank Pavilion – Pittsburgh, PA
8/15/18 – BB&T Pavilion – Camden, NJ
8/17/18 – The Pavilion at Montage Mountain – Scranton, PA
8/18/18 – Xfinity Center – Boston, MA
8/20/18 – Budweiser Stage – Toronto, ON
8/22/18 – Lakeview Amphitheater – Syracuse, NY **
8/24/18 – Jiffy Lube Live – Bristow, VA
8/25/18 – PNC Bank Arts Center – Holmdel, NJ **
8/28/18 – Riverbend Music Center – Cincinnati, OH
8/29/18 – Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre – Chicago, IL
8/31/18 – Ruoff Home Mortgage Music Center – Indianapolis, IN **
9/1/18 – DTE Energy Music Theatre – Detroit, MI
9/3/18 – Darien Lake Amphitheater – Darien Center, NY
9/6/18 – Northwell Health at Jones Beach Theater – Wantagh, NY **
9/7/18 – XFINITY Theatre – Hartford, CT
9/9/18 – Blossom Music Center – Cleveland, OH **

More information on Five Finger Death Punch’s new video, tour schedule and more is available online now at:

 

Website: http://www.fivefingerdeathpunch.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/fivefingerdeathpunch

Twitter: http://twitter.com/FFDP

 

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 https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Positive Lyrical Themes, Varied Musical Arrangements Make Vonne’s Seventh Album Well Worth Hearing

Courtesy: Bandolero Records

Multi-talented performer Patricia Vonne is set to release her latest full-length studio recording later this month.  Top of the Mountain, Vonne’s seventh full-length studio recording, is scheduled to be released May 25 via Bandolero Records.  Regardless of listeners’ familiarity with Vonne’s musical body of work, it suffices to say that this record will generate its own share of interest from any listener.  That is thanks to the tejano, country and southern rock influences in the songs’ arrangements and the lyrical content delivered throughout.  The joining of those elements makes the album in whole worth at least one listen.

Patricia Vonne’s latest full-length studio recording Top of the Mountain is an interesting new effort from the veteran musician/actress.  As noted, that is due to the combination of the various musical influences exhibited throughout the album and its lyrical content.  ‘Citadel,’ the album’s second entry is just one of the songs that serves to support that statement.  The clearly southern rock influenced arrangement lends itself to comparisons to compositions from the likes of Joan Jett and the Blackhearts, Pat Benatar and other similar classic female rockers.  It’s a driving rhythm that easily works itself into listeners’ minds and sticks there.  The song’s lyrical content creates its own interest as Vonne sings, “Come on baby/Let’s ride the streak of lightning/Blaze that trail/Move the citadel/It’s a long hard road/Just to get to heaven…no paint by number game/This world is changing/Hands are tied/I’ve seen hatred lead the blind/Out of darkness comes a light/No more anger/No more lies/Citadel.”  This lead verse is interesting because of the hope presented here.  That hope is hinted in the verse’s end as Vonne sings of light coming from darkness and no more lies and anger.  That light is a positive driving force that helps to end those lies and hatred.  From here, Vonne goes on to sing about looking forward instead of back to the past and of listening to one’s heart.  It is a positive message that any listener will appreciate.  When this message is set alongside the bittersweet sound of the song’s arrangement, it becomes even more powerful.  When the two elements are joined, they make clear why this song is just one example of why Vonne’s new album is an interesting new offering from the veteran performer.  It is just one of the entries that shows what make the album interesting.  ‘Cancion De La Boda’ is another example of why this record is worth the listen.

‘Cancion De La Boda’ (translated roughly to ‘Wedding Song’ in English) is sung entirely in Spanish.  Not having a lyrics sheet to reference with this review, and not speaking or writing English very well, it is difficult to know precisely what Vonne is singing here.  Though, there is a seeming mention more than once of the phrase besame, which translates roughly to English as meaning “kiss me.”  Keeping that in mind with the rest of the song, it can be inferred that the song’s subject is singing quite happily to a certain love interest of his/her love for that other person.  The light, flowing Tejano style arrangement presented here, complete with accordion, makes this song another strong entry that any listener will enjoy regardless of comprehension of Spanish.  Vonne’s happy vocal delivery and equally happy arrangement makes clear that this is just such a happy work that serves even more to show why Top of the Mountain is another offering from Vonne that is worth at least one listen. It still is not the last of the album’s entries that serves to support that statement.  ‘Lekker Ding’ is yet another example of what makes this record worth hearing at least once.

‘Lekker Ding’ stands out on this record in part due to its arrangement.  The arrangement in question is one that will put a smile on the face of any blues-based country music fan and even that of any old school country purist.  Vonne has tapped into something special here, with the song’s piano line, guitar twang and even here own happy vocal delivery.  What’s more, that arrangement, when joined with Vonne’s own vocal delivery, conjures thoughts of Shania Twain.  The same can be said of the song’s lyrical content, which interestingly could also be likened to Bonnie Raitt’s take on Stevie Ray Vaughn’s ‘Sweet Little Thing.’  Vonne sings here, “He’s my boytoy lover and major crush/I love my baby cause he gives me a rush/He’s as sweet as sugar can be/He’s got my heart lined up by a string/He’s my sweet thing/tames my mood swing/He’s my lekker ding.”  From here, she goes on to compare her man to beef, a well-aged wine and much more against the song’s light, SRV/Shania Twain style arrangement, easily putting a smile on any woman’s face.  At the same time, that arrangement is just as certain to put a smile on the faces of any man and woman.  It is just a fun song all the way around that is certain to be a fan favorite both in record and live.  In other words it is easily one of the album’s highest points, showing once more why the album in whole is well worth hearing even if only once.  It most certainly is not the last of the album’s entries that serves to support that statement, either.  The almost ZZ Top/George Thoroughgood style arrangement of ‘City Is Alive’ and its equally fun lyrical content that seems to center on the fun of being in the big city is another song that audiences are certain to enjoy.  ‘Illuminaria,’ stands out because Vonne’s vocal style easily could be likened to that of the one and only Shakira.  At the same time, there are moments that also lend themselves to comparisons to Paula Cole.  This is all just this critic’s interpretation of course.  The album’s title track is another country/folk hybrid that fans of that genre are sure to enjoy.  It’s uplifting lyrical content, which seems to center on a people not giving up on fighting for what’s right adds even more enjoyment to its whole.  ‘Graceland Trip’ obviously lends itself to thoughts of the King himself, one Elvis Presley.  This applies both musically and lyrically.  It is an upbeat arrangement that is certain to entertain audiences of all ages in its own right.  It’s just one more way in which Top of the Mountain proves itself worth hearing.  When joined with all of the other noted works – and even those few not raised here – the whole of the songs shows without doubt that Top of the Mountain will most certainly help make Vonne’s journey to the top that much easier.

Patricia Vonne’s new full-length studio recording Top of the Mountain is a work that no doubt, will most certainly help make her journey to the top of the music industry mountain a little bit easier.  That is proven from start to end thanks to the variety of arrangements and lyrical topics tackled throughout.  From the light rock vibes of ‘Citadel,’ the album’s opener and its thought-provoking lyrical theme that seems to send a message of not giving up in life, to the far more light-hearted and celebratory ‘Cancion De La Boda’ to the equally musically and lyrically upbeat ‘Lekker Ding’ – which clearly lifts from Shania Twain and Stevie Ray Vaughn – and beyond, this record offers plenty for listeners to appreciate.  That includes the driving rocker that is ‘City Alive,’ the Paula Cole-esque ballad that is ‘Illuminaria’ and the clear tribute to Elvis Presley in ‘Graceland Trip.’  Between all of these songs, and those not more directly discussed here, the whole of the 11-song, 34-minute record proves to be a presentation that is certain to help make Vonne’s climb to the top of the music industry mount that much easier.  Top of the Mountain will be available May 25 via Bandolero Records.  More information on Top of the Mountain is available online now along with all of Patricia Vonne’s latest news and more at:

 

 

 

Website: http://patriciavonne.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/PatriciaVonneMusic

Twitter: http://twitter.com/patriciavonne

 

 

 

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