Rock super group Kings of Quarantine debuted the video for its latest single this week.
The band — Jason Rockman (Slaves on Dope), Kevin Jardine (Slaves on Dope), and Bill Kelliher (Mastodon) — debuted the video for its cover of the hit Janes Addiction song ‘Mountain Song‘ Tuesday. The band was joined by an all-star cast of musicians for the video and the song, consisting of: Wes Borland (Limp Bizkit), Tanner Wayne (In Flames), P-Nut (311), Louise Post (Veruca Salt), Richard Patrick (Filter), and Bert McCracken (The Used).
Kings of Quarantine’s take on ‘Mountain Song’ stays largely true to its source material. What it does extra is gives the song an added punch with its multiple vocal takes and even heavier, amped up guitars.
One hundred percent of sales from the single’s release will go to benefit Roadie Relief, an effort that serves to assist roadies who were negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Rockman talked about that attempt to help concert staff through the song’s sales in a prepared statement.
“We hope to not only put a smile on people’s faces, but also help the touring staff that have been severely affected by the pandemic”, said Rockman.
Kings of Quarantine’s latest single and video are the second from the group. The trio covered Faith No More’s 1987 hit song ‘We Care A Lot‘ last year. The group was joined by members of Anthrax, Korn, Filter, Run DMC, Refused, and Men Without Hats for that recoding and its video.
The Flower Kings debuted the video for its latest single this week.
The band debuted the video for its new single ‘Black Swan‘ Tuesday. The song is the fourth single from the band’s latest album Islands, which was released in October through InsideOUt Music. Its premiere follows that of the album’s current singles ‘Morning News,’ ‘From The Ground,’ and ‘Broken.’
The video features the band performing its new single, each member of the band performing his respective part alone as the song plays. The song’s musical arrangement is a clearly classic rock-influenced composition. There are moments in the song that hint especially at a Queen influence. There are also some clear influence from the synth-driven sounds of the 80s.
Guitarist and founding member Roine Stolt talked about the song’s musical arrangement in a prepared statement.
“’Black Swan’ was a little piano melody I wrote around spring 2019 – I thought of it as ‘Polish melancholic’ or a ballet piano piece,” he said. “I did present a demo for the Transatlantic sessions but when it didn’t stick there I brought it along to the TFK ‘Islands’ session. Here it found its way in to the album and concept and with a slightly more dry guitar-driven sound and with nods to both The Beatles & Queen it became one of my favorite tracks. Hasse delivers some of his finest vocal on the album here.”
The song’s lyrical theme will appeal to listeners just as much as the song’s musical arrangement, with its metaphorical language.
Islands is available now. The album’s track listing is noted below.
Disc One (49:40) 1 – Racing With Blinders On 4:24 2 – From The Ground 4.02 3 – Black Swan 5:53 4 – Morning News 4:01 5 – Broken 6:38 6 – Goodbye Outrage 2:19 7 – Journeyman 1:43 8 – Tangerine 3:51 9 – Solaris 9:10 10 – Heart Of The Valley 4:18 11- Man In A Two Peace Suit 3:21
Disc Two (43:01) 1 – All I Need Is Love 5:48 2 – A New Species 5:45 3 – Northern Lights 5:43 4 – Hidden Angles 0:50 5 – Serpentine 3:52 6 – Looking For Answers 4:30 7 –Telescope 4:41 8 – Fool’s Gold 3:11 9 – Between Hope & Fear 4:29 10 – Islands 4:12
More information on The Flower Kings’ new album is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:
The Pretty Reckless has enlisted the aid of Tom Morello for its latest single.
The band partnered with the guitarist, who is known for his work with Rage Against The Machine, Audioslave, and Prophets of Rage, for its new single ‘And So It Went.’ The song is the fourth single from the band’s forthcoming album Death by Rock and Roll, which is scheduled for release Feb. 12 through Fearless Records.
The band debuted the album’s third single ‘25‘ and its video Dec. 18. It debuted the video for the album’s second single ‘Broomsticks‘ Oct. 22. The lead single/title track saw its premiere last June.
Album pre-orders are open. The album’s track listing is noted below.
DEATH BY ROCK AND ROLL TRACK LISTING: “Death By Rock And Roll” “Only Love Can Save Me Now” “And So It Went” “25” “My Bones” “Got So High” “Broomsticks” “Witches Burn” “Standing At The Wall” “Turning Gold” “Rock And Roll Heaven” “Harley Darling”
The musical arrangement featured in The Pretty Reckless’ new single is a driving, up-tempo composition. Morello’s work on the song gives it an infectious blues-rock influence while also incorporating his trademark effects for even more impact. The use of the children’s chorus as the song progresses conjures thoughts of Pink Floyd’s timeless, socially conscious song ‘Another Brick in the Wall.’
Speaking of social consciousness, front woman Taylor Momsen noted in a recent interview, the song’s lyrical content is its own social commentary.
“The world has been in such a state of civil unrest,” said Momsen. “‘And So It Went’ basically comes from that vision. As a songwriter, I feel like I’m not here to preach. I use music to observe and communicate what I see around me. This song felt like the perfect storm for Tom Morello to join in and rip the sound waves apart with his guitar. It was more than a pleasure having him add his unique and defining sound to the song.”
More information on The Pretty Reckless’ new single and album is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:
Families nationwide got a lot of worthwhile ways to spend time together during the COVID-19 pandemic this year, thanks to all of the new DVDs, Blu-rays and box sets. Of course while families got plenty to watch together, grown-ups also needed something of their own to enjoy. Thankfully this year produced just as much for grown-ups to enjoy as children. That is why Phil’s Picks is taking a look at what were among the best of this year’s new DVD and Blu-ray box sets for grown-ups. This year saw a bunch of new content from Warner Brothers and DC, some better than others (E.g. the new Swamp Thing reboot and new seasons of Black Lightning – Black Lightning proved better this year than Swamp Thing, but the latter still proved worth watching at least once. Itv and PBS presented a rather intriguing new season of itv’s crime drama Endeavour. The season was okay but left something to be wanted. The short-lived deep comedy The Good Place finally met its end this year and also received its only full-series release on Blu-ray thanks to the folks at Shout! Factory. In an even more surprising move, ABC’s hit comedy Modern Family got a full series release this month exclusively through Target. While not inexpensive, it is a presentation that devotees will appreciate. It is just one more entry in Phil’s Picks 2020 Top 10 New DVD & Blu-ray Box Sets For Grown-ups category.
As with every other list from Phil’s Picks, this list features the Top 10 titles in the category along with five honorable mentions for a total of 15 titles. Without further ado, here is Phil’s Picks 2020 Top 10 new DVD & Blu-ray Box Sets for Grown-Ups.
PHIL’S PICKS 2020 TOP 10 NEW DVD & BLU-RAY BOX SETS FOR GROWN-UPS
Endeavour: Season Seven
The Good Place: The Complete Series
Modern Family: The Complete Series
Doctor Who: Season 12
The Expanse: Season 4
Black Lightning: The Complete Second Season
Black Lightning: The Complete Third Season
Stargirl: The Complete First Season
Mission: Impossible: The Complete Series
Gunsmoke: The Complete Series 65th Anniversary Set
Gunsmoke: The Movies
Penny Dreadful: City of Angels Season 1
Swamp Thing: The Complete Series
Star Trek Picard: Season 1
The Twilight Zone: Season 1
One more list is up to finish up this year’s lists. That list is the year’s top new re-issues. Stay tuned for that.
Fledgling record label Le Coq Records announced its initial slate of new releases for 2021.
Starting the label was a personal decision by its founder Piero Pata and his partner, according to information about the label’s launch. The information states Pata wanted an outlet for her to return to jazz singing after spending much of her career as a Flamenco dancer.
Pata said in his own statement that the decision to launch the label also led to the decision to help other musical artists.
“As we embarked on this process, we met so many wonderful players,” said Pata. “We soon realized that Le Coq could be an ideal avenue to get their music out to the world.”
Keyboardist Bill Cunliffe, one of many artists already signed to Le Coq Records, spoke warmly of Pata when asked about joining the upstart label.
“Piero is great to work with because he’s all about the music,” said Cunliffe. “He shares that quality with all the great jazz producers. He’s also an artist himself, so he knows good from bad and he gives me the freedom to do what I need to do things right. No one can ask for a better producer than that.”
Le Coq Records Engineer Josh Connolly (Lady Gaga, Kendrick Lamar), echoed Cunliffe’s comments.
“Piero has a vision for quality,” said Connolly. “That’s true in everything that he does. He gives the artists complete creative freedom when it comes to the music, but he brings great ideas to the table. He likes to create situations that take people a little out of their comfort zones, but that can lead to something new. He provides an environment that is very nurturing and fruitful, which honestly doesn’t happen too often.”
Along with Cunliffe, Le Coq Records already boasts a roster that includes but is not limited to acts, such as keyboardist John Beasley, bassist John Pattituci, and famed drummer Marvin “Smitty” Smith and his fellow drummer Vinnie Colaiuta. Also on the label’s roster are vocalist Andy James, percussionist Alex Acuna, saxophonist Ralph Moore, and trumpeter Terell Stafford.
Many of the noted artists will feature on Le Coq Records’ forthcoming compilation record Le Coq Records presents The Jazz All Stars Vol. 1. The compilation is scheduled for release Jan. 8. James’ own record Tu Amor will follow on Jan. 22.
Saxophonist Rick Rick Margitza’s new record Sacred Hearts is set for release Feb. 5. A new, as yet untitled collaboration between Cunliffe, Pattituci, and Colaiuta is scheduled for release Feb. 19.
More information on Le Coq Records is available along with all of the label’s latest news at:
Eagle Rock Entertainment will pay tribute Friday, to the late, great reggae legend Bob Marley. The tribute will come in the form of the new 3LP live recording Uprising Live. The performance featured in the recording was originally captured at Marley’s June 13, 1980 performance in Dortmund, Germany. The performance was one part of what would go on to become Marley’s final live tour before his untimely passing from cancer in 1981. The show was also part of Germany’s well-known Rockpalast concert series. The 23-song set is a presentation that the most devoted fans of Bob Marley and The Wailers will appreciate. That is due in part to the concert’s set list, which will be examined shortly. While the set list does plenty to appeal to the noted audiences, the recording is not perfect. That it is only available on vinyl detracts somewhat from the appeal. It does not necessarily make the presentation a failure, though. This will be discussed a little later. The recording’s production works with the set list to add to the recording’s appeal, ensuring even more the engagement and entertainment for the noted listeners. When it is considered alongside the set list, the two elements do plenty to make the recording in whole appealing for audiences who are okay with taking in any recording mainly on vinyl.
Eagle Rock Entertainmnt’s forthcoming Bob Marley live recording Uprising Live is a presentation that will appeal to a very targeted group of listeners. It will appeal mainly to audiences who prefer vinyl to other forms of music delivery, and in the same vein, to the most devoted Bob Marley fans. That is proven in part through the recording’s featured set list. Spanning a total of 23 songs, the set list gives listeners a relatively wide swath of Marley’s catalog at that point. It reaches all the way back to his 1973 albums Burnin’ and African Herbsman and all the way up to Uprising, which Marley was supporting on the Uprising Tour. Additionally, Marley’s own then wife (now widow) and her group I Three got some time in the limelight, opening the concert with four consecutive songs. So he made sure that she and her group got their own attention in the process. Given, the overall set list is not necessarily a career-spanning presentation, but it still reaches into a wide range of Marley’s albums, including, but not limited to the likes of Exodus, Natty Dread, and Rastaman Vibration. It would have been easy for Marley and his fellow musicians/performers in The Wailers to focus mainly on Uprising, but they did not go that route. Instead they opted to give audiences something more along with featuring some songs from that record.. To that end, the overall set list gives listeners plenty to appreciate.
While the set list featured in Uprising Live is a positive presentation in itself, it does lead to the recording’s sole negative, its availability. The recording is scheduled for release Friday on 3LP and 3LP Deluxe colored vinyl pressings. There is no CD or digital availability. That potentially limits sales since not everybody out there is a vinyl fan. It means that audiences who want the recording will have to purchase a record player in order to be able to take in the recording. Given, there are audiences who are more devoted to vinyl than other platforms, but there are still people out there who are still more committed to CDs (and even more who are committed to digital). To that end, this limited availability becomes a negative that cannot be ignored. It does not make the recording a failure by any means, but is still problematic in its own right. Moving from there, there is still one more positive to address in the recording. That positive is its recording.
The production of Uprising Live is important to examine because of how far recording technology has come since 1980. Considering this, the production was handled relatively well. There are moments in which the audio is a touch “airy,” but they are rare. For the most part, the instrumentation and vocals were well-balanced throughout the course of the recording. Even the audience noise is audible in its own right. The balance of those audio elements through the production results in a presentation that audiences will enjoy just as much for its sound as for its content. That is even keeping in mind its limited availability. All things considered, the recording proves itself a positive presentation for the most devoted Bob Marley fans.
More information on the recording is available along with all of the latest Bob Marley news at:
Dee Snider has partnered with Lizzy Hale for a new version of Snider’s holiday song, ‘The Magic of Christmas Day.’
The song is scheduled for release Nov. 13 through BFD/The Orchard. Pre-saves are open.
Snider offered some history behind his song during a recent interview.
“Originally written and recorded as a Christmas gift for my wife Suzette with no plan for commercial release, years later ‘The Magic of Christmas Day (God Bless Us Everyone)’ was discovered and recorded by Celine Dion for her holiday record These Are Special Times, which went on to become the biggest selling holiday album in history — and is the reason we refer to her as ‘Saint Celine’ in my house,” he said. “When it was recently suggested that I should finally record this song myself, I knew I needed to bring in a young powerhouse vocalist to not only duet with me, but light a Yuletide fire under my ass! I only knew of one rock vocalist who could deliver on all those fronts, and she did in spades: the incredible Lzzy Hale of Halestorm!”
Hale offered her own comments, expanding on Snider’s statements.
“If you’re ever in your life gonna go full on, all gas, no brakes ‘Christmas Cheer,’ you do it Dee Snider-style. I was so honored to get the call from Dee on his holiday classic ‘The Magic of Christmas Day.’ After exchanging a few very affectionate ‘f@&k yous’ as we rediscovered our respect and admiration for each other’s talent, the final recording produced by the legendary Jeff Pilson is insanely epic. Thank you so much to everyone for having me. And considering we will ALL be experiencing a very different holiday season in 2020, I hope that this song brings you joy and puts a smile on your face. God bless us everyone!”
More information on the forthcoming release of Snider’s song is available along with all of his latest news at:
When Hanna Barbera debuted its animated series The Jetsons in 1962 on ABC, few if any people would have thought that the series would go on to be such a prophetic program and so beloved. So when the series’ first season was released on DVD in 2004 through Warner Home Video, it gave lots of people plenty of reason to be excited. It would take another five years before audiences would see another release, which came in the form of the first half of the series’ second season. That release was the last official release for the series, while the second half of the second season, the third full season and the whole season were released on DVD and Blu-ray respectively through an on-demand platform through a partnership between Amazon, Hanna-Barbera, and Warner Brothers. Those releases were not official releases, meaning that audiences were pretty much left waiting and wondering when and if the rest of the series would ever get an official release. Audiences got their answer Oct. 13 with the release of The Jetsons: The Complete Series on DVD. The eight-disc collection is a mostly enjoyable presentation, though also imperfect. Its main positive is it’s the fact that it does in fact contain all three of the series’ seasons in one set. The importance hereof will be discussed shortly. While the inclusion of all three of the series’ seasons is an undeniable positive, its overall lack of any bonus content hurts its presentation considerably. This will be discussed a little later. While the lack of any real bonus content hurts this collection’s presentation without argument, the set’s packaging actually helps that presentation. This will be discussed later, too. When it is considered with the very presentation of the full series, the two elements do just enough to make the set worth owning for the series’ most devoted fans, but just enough.
Warner Home Video’s recently released presentation of The Jetsons: The Complete Series is a presentation that while mostly enjoyable, falls somewhat short of expectations. It is not a complete failure, though. One thing about the collection that audiences will appreciate is that it is in fact the full three-season run of the timeless, beloved series. This is important because this release marks the first time ever that the series has ever received an official full series release. As already noted here, Warner Home Video and Hanna-Barbera partnered in the early 2000s to release the series’ first season in whole on DVD. That was followed five years later with the release of the first half of the series’ second season. After that though, the series never released any other official DVD releases. Amazon partnered with Hanna-Barbera and Warner Brothers to release the second half of Season Two and the whole of Season Three on an on-demand DVD platform, and the series’ full run on an on-demand Blu-ray platform. Those releases, in other words, are recorded to DVD-R/BD-R discs when audiences purchase the sets online. According to some reviews read by this critic, allegedly the Blu-ray series set may in fact not be the whole set, but only Season One. That is stated by multiple people who reviewed the set through Amazon. If in fact there is some credence to the allegation, then it makes this new DVD collection that much more appealing for the noted devotees of The Jetsons. Now, for all that the actual full physical presentation of the series’ run does for this collection’s presentation, the lack of secondary content detracts greatly from its presentation.
Secondary content is, in this case, bonus content. The only bonus content that is featured in this collection is the Jetsons movie The Jetsons Meet The Flintstones. On the surface, having the movie seems okay. However, it is a downfall because the movie in question is already featured in the much less expensive double disc set of The Flintstones movies and TV specials as one of the featured movies. That collection in question costs only about $14.87 (using listings at Amazon, Walmart, Target, Best Buy, Barnes & Noble Booksellsers, and Books-A-Million). This eight-disc collection of The Jetsons averages $26.18 (sing price listings at Walmart, Target, Amazon, Best Buy, and Barnes & Noble Booksellers – it was not listed at Books-A-Million). Audiences will find themselves left scratching their heads and wondering why The Jetsons movie was not also featured as a bonus here. Additionally, the box sets for the series’ first season and the first half of its second season featured lots of bonus content, such as a history of The Jetsons, the series’ cultural importance and even a pair of feature-length audio commentaries. Those bonuses were not carried over to this collection. Considering that each set was released in partner between Warner Home Video (Warner Media Group) and Hanna-Barbera, it seems odd that the noted content was not carried over. As a result, audiences who (like this critic) enjoy that bonus content and already own the noted sets will basically have to keep them in order to enjoy them since they were not brought to this latest set. That is a disservice to the noted audiences and is collectively an undeniable detractor from the set’s presentation. Now for all that the lack of any real bonus content does to detract from the collection’s presentation, it does not make the set a complete failure. One other item – the set’s packaging – makes up for the problems posed by the lack of bonus content.
The packaging in question actually takes up less space than the two official season sets that Hanna-Barbera and Warner Home Video released in 2004 and 2009. In other words, it will take up slightly less space on audiences’ DVD/BD racks than those noted standalone sets. This is unquestionably positive. Even better is that the discs are themselves packaged well inside the case. Each disc sits on its own “plate” inside the case, separate from the other discs. There is no having to move the discs and risk damaging them in order to remove or replace them before and after watching them. It may come across as a surprise, but there are still some companies who take that old packaging approach for their multi-disc DVD and BD sets. To that end, this adds to the set’s appeal. It still is not the last of the most notable of the packaging positives.
The set also features an insert that clearly points out each episode’s title, on which discs the episodes are featured, and even which discs present which season. Again, there are a lot of home video companies even today that will not take that approach. So both companies are to be commended for taking this simple step, too. Putting the proverbial cherry on top of this presentation is the exterior packaging.
The exterior packaging for The Jetsons: The Complete Series is simple. The case is surrounded by a simple cardboard type outer “box” that slides simply on and off of the case that contains the discs. This protects the case and the discs while also saving audiences time in getting to the discs. This is important to note because in comparison, the Season One and Season Two, Volume One sets each essentially have to be shaken from their exterior packaging to even get to the cases. That is because the cases are packed so tightly in their respective exterior packaging. Having to shake the cases can lead the discs to potentially come undone from their spots inside the cases and get damaged. It is also time consuming to have to take that extra time trying to just get to the case, let alone the discs therein. To that end, this aspect of the packaging is definitely its own positive, even being more of an aesthetic aspect of the packaging. When this aspect is considered with the other noted packaging elements, the whole of the packaging really stands out and shows its importance just as much as the fact that the entire series is actually presented here. When these two elements are considered along with the concerns raised by the lack of any real substantive bonus content, the whole of those elements makes the collection enjoyable although imperfect.
Warner Home Video and Hanna-Barbera’s recently released The Jetsons: The Complete Series set is an enjoyable presentation, but is sadly not necessarily complete. Yes, it has the series’ full three-season run. Yes, its packaging definitely is complete. However, it lacks any real substantive bonus content. To that end, the series is complete in one aspect, but it still will leave some audiences wanting for more in the long run. Keeping that in mind, one can only hope that if the set is ever re-issued, it really will live up to its title of being complete. More information on this and other titles from Warner Home Video is available at: