Nehoda’s New LP Gives Promise For The Band’s Future

Courtesy: Dewar PR

Independent rock band Nehoda is scheduled to release its new album But Anyways… Friday.  The nine-song record is an interesting presentation from the band.  That is due to in part to its musical arrangements, which will be discussed shortly.  The 39-minute album’s lyrical content also plays into its presentation.  It will be discussed a little later.  The sequencing of that collective content rounds out the album’s most important elements.  Each item noted here is important in its own way to the whole of the album’s presentation.  All things considered, they make But Anyways… a work that shows promise for Nehoda.

Nehoda’s forthcoming album But Anyways…is a presentation that is worth hearing at least once.  That is proven in part through its musical arrangements.  The arrangements in question are of interest because while they do an impressive job of exhibiting the band’s wide range of influences and talents.  From the plodding, Animals-eque ‘Lies’ and ‘Devil’s Bitch’ to the more Bruce Springsteen style approach of ‘Please Don’t Go’ to the Pearl Jam-esque ‘Afterglow’ to the more grunge stoner vibe of ‘I Don’t Know,’ the album’s opener to the more alt-rock approach of ‘Shakey Pop,’ this record takes audiences in a variety of directions.  On the surface, this is a good thing.  That is because again, it shows the wide range of the band’s influences and talents.  It shows that the band is not just some one-trick pony so to speak, which will appeal to plenty of listeners.  This is just one aspect of the record that will appeal to listeners.  The arrangements’ companion lyrical content works with that content to make for even more appeal.

The lyrical content that is featured throughout Nehoda’s new album is key to discuss because it is so simple and accessible for listeners.  The album opens with a clear sociopolitical commentary that goes after a variety of institutions.  Band namesake and founder Patrick Nehoda opens the song by addressing those who would attack anyone who might want to speak their minds as he writes, “Try to find your voice/It ain’t f****** correct/Try to make a choice/Cut you off at the neck.”  That second line in the song’s lead verse comes across as a statement of how people are just as apt to attack one another for standing on one side of an issue or another.  The short and simple here is that he is seemingly making a statement about how divided America has become.  In the song’s second verse, Nehoda seems to address the government sending people off to war and the fact that when American forces go overseas, innocent people (including children) are killed.  It is a lot of metaphorical language, but it would seem to make sense at least in this critic’s mind.  This is inferred as Nehoda sings, “Governments killing babies/Children for hire/It’s no wonder the youth of the world/Want to set this place on fire.”  That line about “children for hire” maybe hints at people as young as 18 (basically children) are hired by the military to go to war and “kill babies.”  Again, this is all just this critic’s interpretation and should not be taken as gospel.  That aside, it certainly seems to be somewhere in that proverbial ballpark.  Sociopolitical commentary is anything but new to the rock realm, but is no less impacting here as it is in those other instances.  From here, things take a noticeable change, focusing more on the topic of relationships and inner struggles.  Case in point are songs, such as ‘Devil’s Bitch,’ ‘Lies,’ and ‘Just Another Season.’  ‘Afterglow’ meanwhile takes a slightly different, more upbeat tone.  ‘Shakey Pop’ does center on a personal relationship, but comes across more as a song whose story is more of a coming-of-age presentation than the standard work about relationships of any kind.  Simply put, the lyrical themes featured throughout this record will connect with listeners just as much as its wide range of musical arrangements if not more so.  Now keeping that in mind, it is still just one more of the elements that warrants examination.  The record’s sequencing rounds out its most important elements.

The sequencing of Nehoda’s new album is important to examine not so much just because of the songs’ energies, but rather the ability of this element to connect the album’s distinct musical styles.  Case in point are the transitions between the record’s first three songs.  The stoner rock opener that is ‘I Don’t Know’ dies off and fades out slow enough that when the equally slow, introspective ‘Lies’ opens up, the transition is fluid.  The same can be said of the transition between that song and its follow-up, ‘Devil’s Bitch.’  Now while the transitions between the album’s first three songs are solid, that is also because the songs’ arrangements are so similar.  From there, things change notably.  ‘Shakey Pop,’ which immediately follows ‘Devil’s Bitch’ is more of a Foo Fighters type work in comparison to the gritty blues rock sound and approach of ‘Devil’s Bitch.’  Yet somehow the transition works even in this case.  Maybe it is again the amount of time given between songs and the fashion in which the prior ends and the latter begins.  The two are clearly different, but each has a certain heavy fuzz about them, giving at least some connection.  The relaxed finale of ‘Shakey Pop’ is what makes its transition into the even more reserved ‘Walk Away’ work as well as it does.  Much the same can be said of the transition between ‘Walk Away’ and the album’s title track.  Interestingly enough, that song gradually builds to a very heavy arrangement.  The heavy opening bar of the otherwise contemplative ‘Just Another Season’ is what makes the transition there work as well as it does.  The record’s final two songs move just as fluidly as the rest of the album’s entries.  The end result is a presentation that shows despite having so many distinct musical influences and styles throughout, those behind the glass put in a lot of time and thought to ensure this aesthetic aspect strengthened the album’s presentation just as much as its content.  When it is considered along with the collective content, the whole of the album becomes even more worth hearing.  As a matter of fact, they combine to make the album a presentation that in hearing, listeners will agree shows some promise for Nehoda.

Nehoda’s new album But Anyways… is a work that will leave audiences saying anything but But Anyways…  Rather, it will keep them engaged and focused on its presentation throughout.  That is proven through its diverse musical arrangements and its accessible lyrical content.  When that content is joined with the album’s sequencing, the whole of the album proves itself a presentation that shows some promise for Nehoda’s future.  But Anyways… is scheduled for release Friday.  More information on the album is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:








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Swim The Current To Release New EP Next Year; Debuts Video For EP’s Lead Single

Independent rock band Swim The Current will open the new year with a new recording.

The band will release its new EP Bright Lights in early 2020.  The record’s official release date will be announced soon. In anticipation of the EP’s release, the band debuted the video for the record’s lead single ‘Red Desert‘ last month.

The video crosses footage of the band performing its new single with a young woman dealing with some obviously heavy emotions.  The whole thing ends with a surprising ending.

Courtesy: TAG Publicity

The song’s musical arrangement lends itself to comparisons to works from the likes of Deftones and Foo Fighters.  The song’s lyrical content matches its visuals.  Guitarist Greg Antine talked about the song’s lyrical content in a recent interview.

“Red Desert’ is a song about relationships and their upward spin that sails the oceans of elated emotions,” he said.  “Yet, the song also shows conversely those relationships that have gone south can be gut-wrenching; filled with emotional torture as they spiral down, and the effects surface; the cutting edge of pain.  Relationships, both upward and downward, are matters of the heart and ‘Red Desert’ tells them very well.  the highs and the lows all come out in the song.”

More information on ‘Red Desert’ is available online now along with all of the group’s latest news and more at:





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‘inFinite’ Will Live Infinitely As One Of Deep Purple’s Best Works

Courtesy: earMusic

Christmas has officially come and gone.  So has Hanukkah.  The presents have been opened and decorations likely have started being put away.  Even despite that, Phil’s Picks still has some gifts of sorts for everyone out there in the form of some more year-ender lists.  Considering that time is so tight, some of the lists, it turns out, might have to be ignored in favor of some others.  One of the lists that definitely will not be ignored before the year lets out is that of the year’s top new rock records.

The titles included in this list are separate from the year’s top new hard rock and metal albums.  Phil’s Picks has a list of those albums on the way. Before getting to that list though, the focus here will be on the year’s top new rock records.  Topping the list of this year’s best new rock records from this critic is Deep Purple’s latest (and likely last) full-length studio recording InFinite.  The album was just recently re-issued with the band’s latest live recording The inFinite Live Recordings Vol. 1 only months after the album’s original release.  The record’s oftentimes blues-based rock arrangements show this band is at the top of its game, even as it seemingly winds down its life.  The lyrical themes exhibited throughout the album are just as interesting as its musical arrangements.  It is definitely a memorable recording that deserves every accolade.

Also on this critic’s list of the year’s top new rock albums is Foo Fighters’ latest effort Concrete and Gold.  This record is more proof of the band’s willingness to try new things and grow on each album and the success that can and does come with that willingness to branch out, rather than churn out the same thing time and again.  It’s just one more of the albums on the list this year.  Also included in this year’s list are new albums from Scale The Summit, Prophets of Rage, John 5 & The Creatures and a number of others.  As with every list from Phil’s Picks, this list features the Top 10 best new albums in its category plus five honorable mention titles for a total of 15 albums.  Now with all of that having been said, presented here is Phil’s Picks 2017 Top 10 New Rock Albums.


  1. Deep Purple — inFinite
  2. Foo Fighters — Concrete & Gold
  3. Prophets of Rage — Prophets of Rage
  4. John 5 & The Creatures — Season of the Witch
  5. Scale The Summit — In A World of Fear
  6. KXM — Scatterbrain
  7. Dishwalla — Juniper Road
  8. Fozzy — Judas
  9. Hell or Highwater — Vista
  10. Gary Numan — Savage (Songs From A Broken World)
  11. At The Wayside — The Breakdown and The Fall
  12. Leprous — Malina
  13. Royal Blood — How Did We Get So Dark?
  14. Warrant — Louder, Faster, Harder
  15. Horisont — About Time

That’s all for this list.  It is not the last list, though.  There are still lists for the year’s top new hard rock and metal albums, the year’s top new albums and select DVD/BD lists.  As many lists as possible will be posted up from here on out, so stay tuned for all that and more.

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‘Give Up The Ghost’ Is A Solid Start For Paul Johnson & The About Last Nights


Courtesy: High Road Publicity

A little more than a month ago, a little band by the name of Paul Johnson & The About Last Nights released its debut EP Give Up The Ghost. The five track record is the type of presentation that shows how easily today’s unsigned band could be tomorrow’s next big mainstream hit.  It shows this through the diversity in its musical arrangements and the depth of its collective lyrical content.  From the infectious southern rock riffs and happy-go-lucky lyrics of ‘Hollywood’ to the Foo Fighters-esque arrangement and equally playful lyrics of ‘American Story (Adrenaline)’ to the Jimmy Eat World style arrangement and thoughtful lyrics of ‘Burn It Down’ and beyond, this record is a solid start for Paul Johnson & The About Last Nights.  It is a record that leaves listeners hoping this band won’t give up the ghost any time soon.

Paul Johnson & The About Last Night’s debut EP Give Up The Ghost is a strong start for the Mississippi-based unsigned rock outfit.  That is due to the solid mix of musical genres on which the band touches over the course of the record’s five-song, 18-minute run and its lyrical content.  The record’s penultimate song ‘Hollywood’ is just one of the songs included in this record that supports that statement.  The song’s guitar-driven musical arrangement is easily likened to arrangements composed by Black Stone Cherry, Buckcherry, The Black Crowes and other similar acts.  Band namesake and vocalist Paul Johnson even conjures thoughts of Buckcherry front man Josh Todd (at least in this critic’s ears) through his vocal delivery here.  When that is set alongside the amalgam of musical influences evident in the song’s arrangement, it makes the arrangement instantly infectious and certain to be a fan favorite.

The song’s musical arrangement is only one part of what makes it notable.  Its lyrical content, like its musical arrangement also conjures thoughts of the aforementioned acts and will put a smile on any listener’s face with its tribute to all of the things that make the south great.  That tribute is evident as Johnson sings, “You know I like to see my toes in the sand/You couldn’t drag me away from Dixieland/Kinda got the feeling you won’t/Just take another breath/Don’t/Don’t take me to Hollywood/Keep me in the south where the weather is good/Southern girls doin’ like they should/Don’t take me/Don’t take me to Hollywood.”  He goes on to sing in the song’s second verse, “I always see how they like to put us down/Don’t really care for the big town/Kinda got the feeling you won’t/Just take another breath/Don’t/Don’t take me to Hollywood.”  Plain and simple, this is a tribute to the band’s home state and region, being that the band is from Hattiesburg, Mississippi.  That upbeat, playful tribute, when coupled with the song’s musical arrangement makes the song in whole one of the record’s best offerings if not its best.  Collectively, they make this song a clear example of what makes Give Up The Ghost such a standout offering and solid start from Paul Johnson & The About Last Nights.  It is only one of the songs that serves to support these statements.  ‘American Story (Adrenaline)’ is another song that shows why this record stands out.

‘Hollywood’ with its simple title, lyrical content and musical approach is a clear example of what makes Give Up The Ghost a solid first effort from Paul Johnson & The About Last Nights.  It musical arrangement and lyrical alike are both so infectious thanks to their simplicity.  As impressive as it is, it is only one of the songs included in this record that makes the EP stand out.  ‘American Story (Adrenaline)’ is another example of what makes this record worth hearing.  As with ‘Hollywood,’ that is due in part to the song’s musical arrangement.  The alignment of the song’s guitar and keyboards couples with Johnson’s vocal delivery to instantly conjure thoughts of Foo Fighters.  Drummer Zach Lewis’ time keeping adds to that comparison even more.  From start to finish, the song’s arrangement easily keeps listeners engaged.  It is only one part of what makes the song so enjoyable.  The song’s lyrical content is just as important to note as its musical arrangement.

Unlike the lyrical theme presented in ‘Hollywood,’ this song’s lyrical theme clearly centers on a woman.  That is inferred easily in the song’s chorus in which Johnson and his band mates sing, “She’s in love/With a fast car/Burn out…./She’s a new American story…little worry.  Deciphering the full extent of the words is difficult without lyrics to which one can refer.  However, between this and other elements that can be deciphered, it becomes clear that Johnson and company are singing about a woman.  That is especially certified in the song’s final moments as the band sings in unison, “She keeps my fantasies alive”  All things considered it is clear that the band is paying tribute to a woman or a certain type of woman.  It stands completely apart from the theme of ‘Hollywood’ and the rest of the record’s songs, and is just as upbeat as those other themes.  Keeping that in mind, when this tribute is set alongside the song’s equally upbeat musical arrangement, the pairing makes the song in whole stand solidly on its own merits; merits that make the song yet another example of what makes the EP such a surprise.  It is not the last of the songs that stands out on the record either.  ‘Burn It Down’ is notable, too.

‘Hollywood’ and ‘American Story (Adrenaline)’ both show in their own way that Give Up The Ghost is one of this year’s top new EPs.  The songs’ musical arrangements and lyrical themes stand out from one another just as much as they do the record’s other featured songs.  As much as they stand out, they are not its only key compositions.  ‘Burn It Down’ is one more of the record’s key songs.  As with the previously discussed songs, that is due in part to the song’s arrangement.  This time around, listeners minds will go to Jimmy Eat World in listening to this arrangement right from the song’s outset.  This critic easily could be wrong, but the song’s lyrical content seems like a coming-of-age story of sorts.  That is inferred as Johnson sings in the song’s lead verse, “I dropped out of school to find my way/A dirty kid in football games/A loser on the street/Had a hunger for the underneath/A family divorced too much to bear/The misinformed will meet you there/Like the liars and the delphines/Is there nothing left for a kid to believe…the pain of knowing I may never feel better off than where I started.”  The story continues in the song’s second verse and ends with a mention of a “21-gun salute to disobey” in the finale.  The song’s chorus, in which the song’s subject seemingly looks back on the past in another way, adds even more depth to the song.  When this is all considered along with the song’s musical arrangement, the whole of the song’s musical and lyrical content makes fully clear why this song stands out.  Collectively, the depth of that musical and lyrical content—and its distinct identity separate from ‘Hollywood,’ ‘American Story (Adrenaline)’ and the record’s other two songs—shows even more why the EP in whole stands out, too.  When it is joined with all of the EP’s other offerings, the record in whole proves, once more, why it is one of this year’s top new EPs, an equally solid start for Paul Johnson & The About Last Nights, and a record that will leave listeners hoping the band won’t “give up the ghost” anytime soon.

Give Up The Ghost is a surprisingly impressive first effort from Paul Johnson & The About Last Nights.  The record only spans five songs and 18-minutes, but in that run, the record exhibits great musical and lyrical diversity.  From start to finish, each song presents its own identity, separate from its counterparts.  From fun-loving to truly in-depth, the songs present a wide range of emotions in both music and lyrics.  All things considered, the record proves to be one of the year’s best new EPs, and gives hope that the band won’t “give up the ghost” any time soon.  More information on Give Up The Ghost is available online now along with all of the band’s latest news and more at:










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