Details Announced For Roadie Relief’s Latest Auction

Courtesy: TAG Publicity

An organization aimed at helping tour crews impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic will continue its efforts with another special event.

Roadie Relief is scheduled to hold its second music memorabilia April 14. The auction will feature items, such as a cymbal used at Rage Against The Machine’s last show and signed by the band’s drummer Brad Wilk; a signed skate deck and posters from 311, and Gibson Les Paul guitar used by Bon Jovi guitarist Phil X for sale. The full list of items that will go up for auction is available to see complete with pictures here.

KISS guitarist Tommy Thayer said in a prepared statement, road crews are crucial for the live music industry.

“Before I became the lead guitarist for KISS almost 20 years ago, I worked behind the scenes with Kiss on and off the road,” he said. “I have a unique perspective and appreciation for how hard our crew works day in and day out. I’ve been there.”

311 bassist Aaron “PNUT” Wills offered his own warm words about the work that roadies do for the live music industry.

“I’ve been a touring musician for over twenty eight years and roadies have made it possibly at every step of my career,” said Wills. “Roadies are free spirits who solve a myriad of problems daily while out on the road. I donated cause I love talking to awesome people and I thought it could motivate our audience to dig deep and help our industry get back on its feet.”

More information on Roadie Relief’s forthcoming auction is available along with all of its latest news at https://www.roadrierelief.org.

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

Many Audiences Will Find Dead Original’s New Album Worth Being ‘Bought’

Courtesy: INgrooves/The Label Group

Independent hard rock band Dead Original has been making a lot of noise in recent months, releasing new singles from its new album Bought and Sold.  Those singles have made quite the impact at radio stations nationwide, and now after being pushed back more than once, the band finally released its new album late last month.  The 14-song record is a presentation that I sure to help the band make even more noise.  Audiences will find it interesting in part because of its overall musical approach.  This will be discussed shortly.  The lyrical themes that are featured throughout the 47-minute record make for their own interest and will be discussed a little later.   The record’s production puts the final touch to its presentation and will also be examined later.  Each item noted here is important in its own way to the whole of Bought and Sold.  All things considered, they make the album a work that will appeal to the band’s clearly targeted audiences.

Dead Original’s new full-length studio recording Bought and Sold is a presentation that is worth taking in at least occasionally.  That is proven in part to the musical arrangements that make up the album’s body.  The arrangements in question exhibit a clear late 90s-era rock and hard rock style sound and stylistic approach.  Case in point is ‘Die Alone,’ which comes late in the album’s run.  The combination of front man Paul Wandtke’s vocal delivery and guitar work, the driving force from drummer Sean McCole, and the low-end from bassist Mike Petrasek gives the song’s arrangement something of a Nirvana-eque sound and vibe.  Wandtke’s vocals are themselves even somewhat comparable to those of Nirvana’s late, legendary front man Kurt Cobain what with the semi-wailing style delivery that he uses.   On another hand, a song, such as the record’s title track presents a comparison to works from the likes of Taproot, Puddle of Mudd, and Stained with its heavy, driving guitars, Wandtke’s vocals, which even include a rather powerful scream at one point.  Interesting in its own right here is the song’s production, which will be touched on later.  On yet another note, a song, such as ‘Beached’ boasts its own unique heaviness right from its outset.  The collective chug of the guitars, bass, and drums joins with the vocals here to lend the arrangement to comparison to works from the likes of Chevelle.  It’s one more way in which the album’s musical arrangements show their appeal for fans of the hard rock sounds of the late 90s (and even early 2000s).  When it is considered along with the other songs noted here and the rest of the album’s works, that overall presentation makes even clearer, the importance of this record’s musical arrangements, and that of their role in the overall album’s appeal.  They are just one portion of what makes the album worth hearing.  The record’s lyrical content adds its own share of appeal to the record.

The lyrical content featured in Bought and Sold is important to note because where the record’s musical arrangements limit its appeal, the lyrical themes will help the record find a farther-reaching appeal.   The lyrical theme featured in ‘Blasted’ for instance – the album’s latest single – presents a message that, according to Wandtke, is uplifting.  “‘Blasted’ is kind of a self-reflection song like when you go outside and stare at the sky and think to yourself, ‘You know, things might be all right,” he said of the song’s lyrical theme.  That message is illustrated clearly in the song’s lead verse, which finds Wandtke singing, What’s the point of letting go?/What’s the point of giving up?/I’ve killed myself too many times to let go/Don’t let go.”  The song’s chorus adds to the illustration as it states, “I’m staring at the sun/Feeling like I’m one/Wondering where I’m going/I’m staring at the sun/Feeling like we’re one/Wondering where we’re going.”  This is that statement of assurance of which Wandtke was talking.  The back and forth in that mindset continues in the song’s second verse, in which Wandtke sings, “What’s the point in all of this/What’s the point in all I’ve done/Now I’m back, to where I’m from/Don’t let go, don’t let go.”  There again is that initial self doubt, which is then replaced by the statement in the chorus refrain.  It serves overall, as a reminder that things can and do get better.  It’s a reminder that is just as welcome here as from any other act.  Additionally, it is just one example of the importance of the lyrical themes to Bought and Sold.  The album’s title track is another example of why the album’s lyrical content is so important.

The lyrical theme featured in ‘Bought and Sold’ takes on familiar topic of “greed and corruption with the general consensus that it’s really up to you to make a change and difference in this world,” according to Wandtke.  His statement is illustrated clearly in the song’s lead verse and chorus, which state, “I’m under the bridge and screaming/I’m cold/I can’t feel my lips/They’re bleeding/I’m broke/Waiting for nothing/And I’ll wait for them to change the world/While we wait for them/To disease the world.”  It is even  more clearly translated in the song’s second verse and chorus refrain, which state, “I’m playing the hand life’s dealing/I’ve lost control/These feelings keep on feeding, my lost soul/And I’ll wait for them to change the world/While we all just watch them rape the world.”  Wandtke’s statement is finalized following the bridge as he states, “I’m making plans to leave now/To make amends at home/The world is superseding my only chance of hope/But it’s up to me/To make the best of this/It’s up to me/I’m letting go/Finding hope I know/By letting go/I’m letting go/We’re bought and sold.”  Looking at all of this Wandtke’s commentary translates clearly.  That accessibility and the song’s familiar theme does much to continue showing the importance of the album’s lyrical content.  It shows in its own way, how the record’s lyrical content will appeal to listeners just as much as the album’s musical arrangements.  It is just one more example of what makes the record’s lyrical themes important in their own right.  ‘Beached’ is one more example of what makes the record’s lyrical content so important.

The lyrical theme featured in ‘Beached’ comes across as centering on the topic of someone being at one’s wits’ end.  That is inferred through the song’s lead verse and chorus, which state, “I’m right on the edge of resolution/Nothing makes sense/It’s time for me to, time for me to wonder what’s next?/Cetacean stranding/I’m out of my head/I am barely, barely breathing.”  What is interesting is the comparison to a beached whale with the use of the phrase, “Cetacean stranding.”  It goes without saying that the use of such a metaphor in talking about one’s mental and emotional state.  It is certain to generate its own share of discussion.   As the song continues, there is resolution as Wandtke sings in the second verse, “I’m holding out this fight/That’s growing in me/I will make my way.”  In other words, it is another message of hope and determination that is certain to resonate with any listener.  To that end, it is one more example of what makes Bought and Sold’s lyrical content as important as the album’s musical arrangements.  When this is considered along with the other lyrical content noted here and the rest of the album’s lyrical content, that whole ensures the lyrical content’s importance will shine through even more.  Even with all of this in mind, the overall content is still just a portion of what makes Bought and Sold worth hearing.  The record’s production puts the final touch to its presentation.

The production that went into Bought and Sold is important because of the impact that it has on the record’s general effect.   The album’s title track is a prime example of the importance of the record’s production.   There is a certain raw sense about this song.  It’s not a spit-shined work.  Yet at the same time, all of the instrumentation and vocals are balanced out.  By comparison, a track, such as ‘Fade To Light’ has more of a crisp production.  The bass and drums together are akin to the stylistic approach taken by members of Korn.  They really cut through because of the song’s production.  Meanwhile Wandtke’s guitar line maintains that aforementioned raw sound.  It makes for an interesting juxtaposition, again attributed to the production.  Between these songs and so many others here, it become clear why the production is important.  That element ensured each arrangement had its own unique identity within the sounds and stylistic approaches.  When it pairs with the record’s overall content, that whole makes the album in whole, a record that is deserving of being heard at least once.

Dead Original’s new album Bought and Sold is a presentation that will find some appeal among audiences.  This is proven in part through its musical arrangements, which take listeners back to the aggro- and hard rock of the late 90s and even early 2000s.  The lyrical themes that accompany the record’s musical arrangements make for even more appeal.  Specifically, they will ensure even wider appeal than the musical arrangements.  The record’s production puts the final touch to its presentation, ensuring each song exhibits its own identity within the bigger picture of the album.  Each item noted here is important in its own way to the whole of the album.  All things considered, they make Bought and Sold a presentation that many audiences will find worth being bought.  Bought and Sold is available now.

More information on Dead Original’s new album is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:

Websitehttps://www.deadoriginal.com

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/DeadOriginal

Twitterhttps://twitter.com/deadoriginal_

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Kings Of Quarantine Debuts ‘Mountain Song’ Cover, Companion Video

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.

Courtesy: TAG Publicity

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.

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Mick Blankenship Debuts New Single, ‘Rule The World,’ Companion Video

Courtesy: O’Donnell Media Group

Independent singer-songwriter Mick Blankenship debuted the video for his latest single this week.

Blankenship debuted the video for his song ‘Rule The World‘ Monday.  The video places Blankenship and his fellow musicians in the backdrop of a vacant warehouse as they perform the song.

There are specific scenes in which Blankenship stands in front of a hole-filled wall through which beams of light shine as he sings.  While it might not be the same set, that scene is very similar to scenes from the video for Korn’s classic song ‘Freak on a Leash.’

The musical arrangement featured in Blankenship’s new single is a heavy, guitar-driven work that will appeal to fans of Disturbed.  Its lyrical content takes on the familiar topics of media and social media influence on the world, according to Blankenship.

“’Rule the World’ is a cold, hard, unapologetic perspective that many people (especially our youth) are being manipulated and controlled by the media,” he said. “We now live in a time where we blindly sacrifice our dignity and who we are for social media views. Sadly, many people find their “self worth” in the amount of post likes that they get. We have become so addicted to social media that we are willing to do almost anything to become what they call [famous].”

More information on Mick Blankenship’s new single and video is available along with all of his latest news at:

Website: http://www.mickblankenship.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/MickBlankenship

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

Echobats Debuts ‘Save Me From Loving You’ Video

Courtesy: Mercia Records

Rock super group Echobat debuted the video for its first-ever single this week.

The band — Tony Harnell (TNT), Joel Hoekstra (Whitesnake, Trans Siberian Orchestra), James Lomenzo (White Lion, Megadeth), Matt Starr (Mr. Big), and Eric Levy (Night Ranger) — debuted the video for its new single ‘Save Me From Loving You‘ Friday.  The video, shot in London, California, and New York as a result of the global COVID-19 pandemic, features the band members singing along (and performing to) the single.

The song’s musical arrangement features a catchy, upbeat indie-rock style arrangement that also has a touch of influence from the rock and pop sounds of the 1960s and 70s.  It will stick in listeners’ minds.

The song’s musical arrangement is a direct contradiction to its lyrical theme, which Harnell said is the polar opposite of the feeling in the song’s musical arrangement.

“The lyrics for ‘Save Me from Loving You’ are ironic for such a happy song!,” he said. “They’re kinda dark; describing someone who’s pretending to be something that looks good to the world while hiding a dark and empty soul. I think, against the happy melodies, it gives it a kind of cinematic mood. “Isn’t there more to you than shine, or are you an empty room”. A friend of mine described the song as Bop-Noir. I kinda like that!”

‘Save Me From Loving You’ is available to stream and download at: Apple Music, Spotify, Amazon, and Deezer.  The song was mixed by Chris Collier (Prong, Lita Ford, Korn, Whitesnake).

More information on Echobats’ new song is available along with all of the band’s latest news at http://www.facebook.com/echobatsofficial.

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ITM’s Seventh LP Not As Lucky As It Could Have Been

Courtesy: Atlantic/Roadrunner Records

Goth metal outfit In This Moment has, over the course of its life, proven to be a hit among the metal masses.  The band has released six largely well-received and successful albums and toured with some of the biggest names in the rock and metal community.  The band hoped to continue that success when it released its seventh album Mother on March 27.  The result has been the exact opposite with this album, though.  This 14-song record has proven to be the band’s most divisive record yet.  The reason being the band has clearly gone in a starkly different direction this time out than the band’s previous works.  That direction in question is what comes across as a much more mainstream direction.  Gone are the shredding guitars and powerhouse vocals that came to be a trademark of the band’s past albums.  They have been replaced by lots of electronics that at times lead to comparisons to work from the likes of Linkin Park at some points, to thoughts of Korn at others and even other well-known nu-metal acts at others still.  It goes without saying in listening to this record that it is hardly the band’s best album, but at the same time, the band should be applauded for taking a risk and changing things up.  The album is not a complete failure, though.  Late in the record’s 54-minute run, the band gives audiences something at least slightly memorable in the form of ‘God is She.’  This work will be discussed shortly.  ‘As Above So Below’ is another of the works that stands out in this record.  It will be addressed a little later.  ‘The In-Between’ is one more of the record’s most notable entries.  It will also be addressed later.  All three of the songs noted here are interesting work in their own right.  When they are considered along with the rest of the album’s works, the end result becomes an album that while clearly not the band’s best work, is still worth at least one listen.

In This Moment’s latest full-length studio recording Mother is an intriguing new offering from the veteran goth-rock outfit.  That is because stylistically speaking, it is such a stark departure from the band’s previously releases.  Rather than being the decidedly loud, shredding work that those albums were, the band largely opts here for a darker, more brooding approach for the majority of the band’s now seventh album.  While that approach makes up the majority of the album, the album does not stick to just that approach throughout.  There are some heavier moments, such as in ‘God Is She,’ which comes late in the album’s run.  The song’s arrangement does start with the noted brooding approach, but that approach is only used in the opening bars of the song.  Roughly 35 seconds into the song, the song goes full goth-metal, with  heavy, crunching guitars and eerie piano line.  The addition of the more melodic sound of front woman Maria Brink’s vocal delivery rounds out the whole to make this arrangement stand out even more.  The whole of the noted elements makes the song’s arrangement stand out as one of the album’s best compositions, if not the record’s best work.

As much as the song’s musical arrangement does for its presentation, it is just one part of what makes the song stand out against its counterparts.  The song’s lyrical content, set against that musical content, makes the song that much more engaging for listeners.  Bring sings in the song’s lead verse, “I am the God and the devil around you/I am the heaven and the hell you crave/I am the queens and the kings that you bow to/I am the name written on your grave/I am the sun that you bask and feed on/I am the moon that you howl to/I am the daydream bringing faith and conviction/I am the nightmare that you’ve been crawling through/So watch as I set fire to everything/Watch as I burn down everything/Anything/Watch as I destroy you/Watch as I turn into God/Watch as she/Watch as she turns into me.”  She continues in the song’s second verse, “I am the righteous/The touched and holy/I am the voodoo that you want to believe/I am the angels that hold and surround you/I am the demon you’re afraid to need/I am the temple that will bless and feed you/I’m the religion keeping you in chains/I am the cure that you pray will find you/I’m the disease running through your veins.”  This comes across as a female empowerment piece, all things considered.  The very note of “God is she – she is god” in the chorus refrain, along with all of the empowering other statements about burning it all down and essentially being the best and worst of all things, of being that which can give joy and which can give pain, is very powerful.  There is a lot of metaphorical language here, but at least in this critic’s mind, the metaphors come across as the noted statements of giving women a certain strength.  Going back to the song’s musical arrangement, the fire in that content couples with this seeming pro-female message to make this a work that lots of audiences will appreciate.

‘God Is She’ is just one of the works featured in this record that proves the album is worth hearing at least once.  ‘As Above So Below’ is another of the album’s most notable works.  The song’s musical arrangement boasts some of the fiery energy that made the band’s past works such appealing works, yet it goes in a decidedly different direction than those works this time out.  This arrangement is far more accessible for mainstream audiences, with its electronic elements and up-tempo aggro-metal sound.  The up-tempo arrangement boasts elements that make it comparable to songs from the likes of Linkin Park, Rob Zombie and even Sevendust.  Yes, that sounds like quite an odd combination of sounds, but it works here. When it is considered alongside the song’s lyrical content, which presents a seeming social commentary, the song in whole becomes even more powerful.

Brink notes at one point in the song’s chorus refrain what is the most telling portion of the song, “As above, so below/What you reap is what you sow/What you give come back three fold/As above, so below.”  That is pretty much the primary statement of this song.  It is complimented in the song’s lead verse as Brink sings, “I won’t lie/It’s quite tempting/Your handouts and your bones/I wont’ lie/They’re quite empty/Your promises and your stones/If you sell, they’ll buy/Don’t feel, just sign/If you sell, they’ll buy/Don’t think, stay blind/Give me control/Sign on the dotted line/Give me the control/She whispered softly/Give me the control/You’re crawling inside my mind/Give me the control/Don’t you fight me.”  She adds later in the second verse, “Watch me float away/I was never yours to save/It all comes back three fold/As above so below.”  This comes across as a seeming message of a person getting what a person gives.  That is illustrated in the statements about buying and selling, and doing things without thinking about the consequences.  It’s as if Brink is making a statement that whether a person tries to lie to others or lets one’s self be lied to, the consequences will happen.  Again, this is merely one interpretation.  Hopefully it is close to being correct.  The very fact that these lyrics can even generate discussion on such a topic (and discussions in general) shows the importance of said content.  When that seeming message about being aware of the consequences of our actions is coupled with the song’s mainstream radio friendly arrangement, it proves in whole to be another key addition to Mother.  It is not the last of the album’s most notable works.  ‘The In-Between’ is one more of the songs featured in this album that shows it deserves to be heard at least once.

‘The In-Between’ is another nu-metal style opus that might surprise audiences.  Once again, the comparison to works from Linkin Park is distinct.  One could even argue that the song’s arrangement also boasts a comparison to works from Otep.  This might turn off some audiences, while it might appeal to others, especially considering it is a direction that the band has not previously taken.  Again, that the band was willing to take the risk to go in such direction is to be applauded, simply because it is not an approach that the band is known for taking.  The emotional theme in the song’s lyrical content couples with the song’s aggressive musical content to strengthen its presentation even more.

Brink sings in the song’s lead verse, “My mother said that I was holy/My father said that I would burn/My mother said I was an angel/My father said that I would turn/So I believed these words and I turned on myself/’Cause maybe he’s right/maybe I’m worthless/Or maybe he’s wrong and my mother was right/I got a killer in me to give me purpose/Oh, I can feel a holy war/I can feel a holy war within/No, I can’t take a holy war/No, I can’t take a holy war again/Is this what you wanted/I’m gonna bring a little hell/I’m gonna bring a little heaven/You just keep wanting more/With your blood and your whore/I’m gonna bring a little hell/I’m gonna bring a little heaven/It’s a beautiful tragedy/You wanna be sick like me/’Cause I bring a little hell.”  She continues in the song’s second verse, “I was told that I was nothing/yet I was told that I was so pure/And I was told that I was dirty/yet I was told I was the cure/I ask myself am I God or s***/Am I the high, the low/I’m f****** worth it/And I ask myself/Am I love or hate/You are the reason why I have and why I can’t quit.”  There is little doubt as to what is being addressed here.  This is someone who has gone through a difficult childhood, which is, of course, a familiar lyrical theme of so much rock music.  That aside, it still hits hard here.  That is especially the case as the theme is accompanied by the song’s musical content.  The whole of those elements makes the song that much more notable.  When it is considered with the other two works addressed here, the trio shows without doubt that while Mother may not be the *ahem* mother of all albums from In This Moment, it is not a total loss.

In This Moment’s latest full-length studio recording Mother is a work that is a loss at least for the moment for In This Moment, but not a total loss.  It is a work that despite falling short in taking its risk, still has some positive points, as pointed out here.  Keeping all of this in mind, the album will appeal to In This Moment’s most devoted fans.  In the same vein, more casual fans will find it worth at least one listen.  It is available now.  More information on the album is available online along with all of In This Moment’s latest news and more at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.inthismomentofficial.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/OfficialITM

 

 

 

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Killset Debuts ‘Closure’ Video

Killset is giving audiences their first listen to its new album.

The band debuted the video for its new single ‘Closure’ Thursday through altpress.com.  The video is also streaming through the band’s official YouTube channel.  The song is taken from the band’s forthcoming third album Killin’ Spree, which is set for release in Fall.  The album’s exact release date has not yet been released.

Courtesy: altpress.com/Adrenaline PR

Musically, the band’s new song will appeal to fans of the aggro-rock sounds of the late 1990s.  Specifically speaking, the song’s arrangement will appeal to fans of bands, such as Korn, Stain and Limp Bizkit.  Lyrically, it will appeal to a wider range of listeners, as front man Luca explained in his interview with altpress.com.

“I think the song is pretty self-explanatory, as far as the message,” he said.  “It’s about getting closure.  I believe everyone has had some type of situation in their life where they’ve needed closure.  The track is about getting it and being able to move on in a positive direction.”

‘Closure’ is available for download now.  The song was produced by Killset with Eric Kalina and Eddie Wohl (Ill Nino, Fuel, Anthrax).  Wohl also mixed the track while Maor Appelbaum (Sepultura, Faith No More, Ill Nino) mastered the track.

While the focus right now is on Killset’s new single, it is just one of the album’s notable nods.  The album will also feature a guest appearance by Nonpoint front man Elias Soriano on the track ‘Burn.’  Along with offering guest vocals on the song, Soriano also co-produced the track with the band.  He talked in a recent interview about working with Killset on the song.

“It was cool creating with the guys,” Soriano said.  “I really think we accomplished something special with this song.”

Killin’ Spree is Killset’s third album in four years.  The band released its debut album Know Your Killer in October of 2015.  That album was followed up in June 2017 with the band’s sophomore album STFU.

More information on the upcoming release of Killin’ Spree is available online now along with all of Killset’s latest news at http://www.facebook.com/killsetofficial.

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Saul’s ‘Aeons’ More Proof That Independent Acts Are Just As Viable As The Mainstream

Courtesy: O’Donnell Media Group

Independent music acts deserve far more credit than they get from the mainstream.  This critic can attest to this statement as time and again, so many unsigned and indie acts that this critic has listened to have proven with their records, to be able to hold their own against their more well-known counterparts in the mainstream.  Independent hard rock band Saul is just one more act that proves that argument true.  Its new EP Aeons holds its own against records from the likes of Disturbed, Korn and Breaking Benjamin. This is proven in part through the EP’s lead single ‘Brother.’  The EP’s opener, ‘The Toll’ supports the noted statement just as much as its lead single.  It will be addressed a little later.  ‘I Am HIM,’ the EP’s penultimate song, is one more example of what makes Aeons a work that will appeal to the noted audiences.  When they are considered alongside the EP’s other two songs – ‘Bolide’ and ‘Aeons’ – the whole of the record proves to be a good effort from the Iowa-based band.

Aeons, the new five-song EP from Sioux City, IA-based band Saul is a good effort from the independent hard rock quartet.  It is a work that is certain to take listeners back to the late 90s and early 2000s with its musical arrangements and lyrical themes.  That is proven in part through the EP’s lead single ‘Brother.’  The band’s members waste no time launching into the nearly four-and-a-half-minute song’s musical arrangement, taking off right from the song’s outset.  The crunching guitars, bass and drums couple with front man Blake Bedsaul’s vocal delivery to instantly conjure thoughts of Hellyeah, Disturbed and Breaking Benjamin.  It doesn’t let up until late in the song’s run, either.  That moment when the song’s energy pulls back is well-placed, too.  That is because it helps to heighten the emotion in the song’s lyrical theme right at that moment.

Speaking of the song’s lyrical content, Bedsaul explained in an interview about the song’s topic.  “Lyrically, this song defines what I should have said to my brother in his last moments,” Bedsaul said in the interview.  “This song cuts deep for me, and it’s a constant reminder that life is fleeting.  Tell the people in your life that you love them.”  This message is delivered clearly as Bedsaul sings in the lead verse, “I write this letter/It’s a letter I’ll never send/Words I’d never say/Would you read it anyway/Tell me brother, what’s my fate/Did you see the sunrise/Did you see the rain/We’ve come so far/Penniless in pain/This is my fate/The world awaits/Hold my hands and tell me that it’s alright/Are you proud of everything I’ve done in my life.”  From here, Bedsaul goes on to sing in the song’s chorus asking pleadingly to his brother “Are you still proud of me after everything that I’ve done?”  Bedsaul continues in similar fashion in the song’s second verse.  Ultimately what this comes across as (at least to this critic) is a person who is dealing with a lot of personal guilty and heavy feelings in general.  Those thoughts and feelings are translated very well.  When it is considered alongside the companion that is the song’s musical arrangement, the song in whole becomes a work that easily holds its own against its more well-known noted counterparts, and proves easily that it could just as easily be played on any mainstream/active rock station along with songs from those bands.  It is just one of the songs featured in this EP that makes the record appealing for its noted audiences.  ‘The Toll,’ which opens the record, is another example of what makes Aeons a noteworthy record.

‘The Toll,’ is a strong first statement from Saul on this record.  The down-tuned crunching guitars couple with Bedsaul’s vocal delivery this time to just as easily conjure thoughts of Breaking Benjamin.  The same can be said of the subtle introduction of the keyboards in the song’s chorus.  The song’s ability to grab its targeted audience with its musical arrangement ensures that those listeners will pay just as much attention to the song’s lyrical content.

Bedsaul sings in this song, seemingly about facing the trials and tribulations and not letting those obstacles get in the way.  He sings, “I know I’m not giving in” and of “the toll it takes/the price we pay.”  Bedsaul never fully makes clear what is taking a toll, only hinting that maybe he is referencing facing life in general, as he sings in the lead verse, “Consider this/Like nothing left.”  Not having a lyrics sheet to reference, it is difficult to fully decipher Bedsaul’s words.  That aside, enough is understood that it is clear this is a song that lyrically sends a message about pushing through life’s adversity, which is always a welcome message.  The fire in the song’s musical arrangement couples with the strength of Bedsaul’s words to make the song in whole another standout addition to Aeons.  It is just one more of the songs that proves the record’s appeal.  ‘I Am HIM’ is one more way in which Aeons proves its appeal.

‘I Am Him’ once again conjures thoughts of Breaking Benjamin with its musical arrangement.  At the same time, though one could also argue that there are hints of In Flames and other similar acts.  It is by far one of the EP’s heaviest tracks, if not its heaviest arrangement.  In reference to its lyrical content, it is difficult, again, to decipher Bedsauls screams and growls when coupled with his band mates’ work sans lyrics sheet.  However, it can be inferred from what is decipherable, that perhaps this song is addressing matters of the past.  He notes late in the song, “say what you say/You cannot walk away/You know not what you’ve done.”  He is rather cryptic here and throughout the song, especially considering the addition of some religious imagery.  Simply put, this song is certain to generate plenty of discussion among listeners.  That is not a bad thing.  In fact, the fact that it will generate so much discussion makes it stand out that much more.  Considering that, it is clear why this song is so important.  It will get people thinking and talking.  The song’s heavy musical arrangement is just an added bonus.  When the two elements are joined with the music and lyrics in the previously discussed songs (and those not directly noted here), the end result is a record that makes Saul’s new EP just as viable for any mainstream/active rock radio station as the band’s more well-known counterparts and contemporaries.

Independent hard rock band Saul’s new EP Aeons is a good effort from the Midwestern outfit.  It holds its own well against records from the likes of Disturbed, Korn and Breaking Benjamin.  All three of the songs discussed here serve to prove that statement.  The EP’s other two songs that were not directly discussed do just as much to support that statement as the noted works.  Each song is critical in its own way to the EP’s whole.  All things considered, the EP proves to be a record on which any mainstream/active rock radio programmer should take a chance.  It is available now.  More information on Aeons is available now along with all of Saul’s current live dates and more at:

 

Website: http://saulofficial.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/saulband

 

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Madame Mayhem Debuts New Single, ‘Broken’

Courtesy: FM Management

Madame mayhem released her new single this week.

The veteran rocker debuted her new single ‘Broken’ on Friday.  The song was co-written with Keith Wallen (Breaking Benjamin) and features guest performances by Ray Luzier (Korn) on drums and Billy Sheehan (The Winery Dogs, Bozzio Levin Stevens, David Lee Roth) –and others — on bass.

‘Broken’ is streaming now on Spotify, and can be purchased via iTunes and Apple Music.

Madame Mayhem is currently scheduled to appear at the National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) 2019 showcase Jan. 24-27 at the Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim, California.  More information on the showcase is available here.

More information on Madame Mayhem’s new single is available online now along with all of her latest news and more at:

 

Website: http://www.madamemayhem.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/MayhemOfficial

 

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Metal ‘Super Group’ Releases New Single, ‘Enter The Gallows’

Fledgling metal band Repentance has released its latest single.

The band — composed of former SOiL and Dirge Within guitarist Shaun Glass, Stuck Mojo front man Robby J. Fonts, lead guitarist Markus Johansson (THEM), drummer Anthony Lien and bassist Mike Sylvester — released its “first official” single ‘Enter The Gallows’ Oct. 18.

The song’s musical arrangement will appeal to fans of Lamb of God, Chimaira, Murkocet and other similar acts.  One could even argue that there is a hint of a Slayer and Machine Head influence incorporated into the arrangement.  Musically speaking, the song seems to come across as a sort of social commentary, though no explanation as to the meaning of the song’s lyrics in its news release.

‘Enter The Gallows’ was engineered by Chuck Macack (Born of Osiris, Oceano) and mastered by Chris Collier (Prong, Korn, RiotV) of CMC21 Productions at ElectroWerks Recording in Downers Grove, Illinois.

While the band is calling its new single its “first official” single, it is actually the band’s third single so far.  It follows the release of the band’s debut “demo” ‘Collide‘ on May 14 and its follow-up, ‘Born To Choose‘ only days later on May 20.

 

 

Courtesy: Napalm Records

‘Enter The Gallows” debut comes only days before the band is scheduled to play as a special guest for Devildriver at Route 20 on Nov. 12. The performance is part of Devildriver’s “The Outlaws Til The End Tour,’ which is in support of Devildriver’s new outlaw country covers record Outlaws Til The End Vol. 1.  The record was released July 6 via Napalm Records.  Tickets are available here.

More information on Repentance is available online now at:

 

Website: http://repentanceband.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/WeAreRepentance

 

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.