Dark Station Premieres ‘Misery’ Acoustic Take, Companion Video

Courtesy: O’Donnell Media Group

Dark Station revisited one of its songs over the weekend.

The band released a reworked take of its song ‘Misery‘ and debuted a video for the song Friday. The band’s forthcoming EP, Afterlight, will feature the song and reworked versions of four other songs from the band’s 2019 debut album Down in the Dark. The EP’s release date and track listing was not announced in the distributed press release announcing the debut of the song and its video.

While ‘Misery’ was not one of the original singles from Down in the Dark, the album produced four other singles: ‘Villain,’ ‘No Life,’ ‘Obvious,’ and ‘Heroes.’

The musical arrangement featured in the reworked take of ‘Misery’ is a stripped down, acoustic take of the song, which is featured in full in Down in the Dark. That take is a heavier, emo/metalcore style composition.

The song’s lyrical theme centers on a serious topic, according to guitarist Kyle Ort.

“Nathan wrote this song about the relationship between Harley Quinn and The Joker, but I think anyone who has been in a toxic relationship will identify with the lyrics.” he said. “Instrumentally, we put everything together with Jeremy and Brandon Wolfe at Wolfe Studios. I really love how this version of the song turned out. I think it shows a different side of the band and I think a lot of people will appreciate that” said Ort.

The video for the acoustic take of ‘Misery’ features Ort, front man Nathan Spades and fellow guitarist David Bruno sitting in a candle-lit studio setting and around a fire pit late in the evening, performing the stripped down take of the song.

Of the song’s video, Ort had the following to say.

“We wanted the video to feel like a live performance, almost like the viewer was in the room with us, so we did the entire video in 2 shots with minimal editing. The film location was Big Bear, California and I remember the temperature dropped to around 20 degrees while we were filming the outside shot. I could barely feel my hands as I was playing guitar. It definitely wasn’t an ideal situation, but we did it!

More information about Dark Station’s new single and video is available online now along with all of the band’s latest news and more at:




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Black Heart Saints Debut ‘Addicted To Love’ Video

Courtesy: Black Heart Saints/TAG Publicity

Black Heart Saints debuted the video for its cover of ‘Addicted To Love‘ last week.

The song is taken from the band’s EP Misery, which was released in September independently by the band.  The song and video pay direct tribute to Robert Palmer, who first composed ‘Addicted to Love.’

The video finds the band in a music store looking for new equipment when front man Josh Ross has what he thinks in the end is a dream sequence.  His “dream” features himself and his band members performing Palmer’s song very much in the vein of Palmer’s original video, complete with female dancers accompanying the group.

The video for ‘Addicted To Love’ is just the latest in what BHS’ fans have come to call the “Misery Quadrilogy.”  The “Quadrilogy” also features videos for the songs ‘Crazy‘ and ‘Lines.’  The video for ‘Addicted to Love’ hints that the group’s fourth video will come soon.

Black Heart Saints recently wrapped its current tour in support of Misery.  The band will head back out on the road next month, starting Dec. 8 in Round Rock, TX.  That tour is scheduled to run through Jan. 25 in Austin, TX.  More information on the band’s tour, videos and more is available online now at:


Website: http://www.blackheartsaintsmusic.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/blackheartsts


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.

Black Heart Saints’ New EP Will Leave Listeners Feeling Anything But “Misery”

Courtesy: Black Heart Saints/TAG Publicity

Black Heart Saints has some more new music for its fans.  The independent Austin, TX-based hard rock band released its new EP Misery in September.  The four-song, 15-minute record’s release comes two years after the release of its debut album AliveMisery holds its own against offerings from the group’s more well-known counterparts just as much as Alive.  That is proven in part through the EP’s title track, which is also its closer.  ‘Crazy,’ the EP’s second song supports the noted statement just as much as ‘Misery.’  The same can be said of the band’s cover of Robert Palmer’s ‘Addicted To Love.’  All three songs do their own part to exhibiting the EP’s appeal.  When they are considered alongside the record’s opened, ‘Lines,’ the general effect will leave listeners feeling anything but misery.

Black Heart Saints’ latest studio recording Misery is a presentation that shows this Austin, TX-based rock band has its own very strong heart beat.  The EP’s title track, which is also its closing number, is just one of the songs that serves to show the strength of said heartbeat.  The song’s musical arrangement presents a familiar southern rock styling that will appeal to fans of acts, such as Blues Saraceno and Black Stone Cherry among many others.  As the song progresses, it adds a touch of Buckcherry influences into the mix, too.  The whole of those influences makes the song’s arrangement its own point of engagement and entertainment.  It is just one part of what makes the song stand out.  The song’s lyrical content makes for its own interest.

Front man Josh Ross sings in the song’s chorus, “Misery is breaking me/I just need to find me another way/Misery/Well can’t you see/What I need for you to let me be/Yea, you got a hold on me.”  Ross sings in the song’s second verse of someone “ripping out his heart” in the song’s second verse, and even trying to find out “which way I should go” in the song’s lead verse.  There is a lot here that is difficult to decipher without lyrics to reference.  However, the lyrics that can be deciphered are just enough to get a good idea of what the song’s subject is talking about in this case.  This is someone who has gone through a bad relationship and is at that point in said post relationship status in which he realizes he has to look forward and move on past what has happened.  This is something relatable to plenty of listeners, and in turn will connect with those noted listeners.  It is that sense of determination that everyone reaches after getting out of a bad situation but realizing wallowing in self-pity does nothing to help.  The fire in the song’s musical arrangement illustrates that message even more, and so well at that.  It make for a strong final statement from the band on this record and just one example of the EP’s strength.

‘Misery’ is an unquestionable sign of the strength of Black Heart Saints’ new EP.  That is due to its musical and lyrical content both by themselves and collectively.  The song is just one of the works featured in the record that shows the EP’s strength, too.  ‘Crazy,’ the EP’s second song is another example of what makes the record notable in its own right.  The song’s musical arrangement is a full-on guitar rock opus whose riffs take the best elements of rock’s golden age and marry that with more modern hard rock elements.  The end result of that coupling is a high-energy work that is certain to appeal to a wide range of listeners.  That noteworthy arrangement joins with the song’s equally interesting lyrical content to make the song in whole even more enjoyable.

Ross sings in the song’s chorus, “What is it about you/I don’t want to know/What is it about you/That won’t let me go/Run so far away/Drives me crazy/Can’t find my way/Somebody save me/What can I say/I’m going crazy/Spinning off this rail/I must be crazy/Yea, you drive me crazy.”  He speaks in the song’s second verse of “All these broken things/That you left to me/Pulls up memories/Keep creeping in/Still haunting me” and that he’d “better ramble on/Find a place of my own.”  Again, much of the song’s lyrical content is difficult to decipher without a lyrics sheet to reference.  Howeer, enough is understandable so as to be able to understand that this is another song focused on the familiar topic of a broken relationship.  The matter in this case is that frustration of having dealt with the poisonous relationship.  Again, it is a fully relatable topic that, when coupled with the song’s musical arrangement, will appeal to a very wide range of listeners.  As relatable and entertaining as the song is, it is not the last of the record’s most interesting work.  The band’s cover of Robert Palmer’s ‘Addicted To Love’ adds its own share of entertainment and engagement to its whole.

The band’s take on ‘Addicted To Love’ stays largely true to its source material, just with a bit of an amped-up re-imagining.  What is really interesting to the song here is that updated take actually conjures more thoughts of Buckcherry than Robert Palmer thanks to Ross’ vocal delivery and the work of his band mates on their respective parts.  While Mr. Palmer may no longer be with us, he and his fans would be proud of the infectious groove established through the band’s arrangement here.  In all honesty, it may be a cover, but the band’s work on this song makes it the EP’s best offering, and one more example of what makes the record worth the listen.  When it is considered along with ‘Crazy,’ ‘Misery’ and even ‘Lines,’ the EP’s opener, the end result is a good follow-up to Black Heart Saints’ debut LP and another sign of the heart still left in this band.

Black Heart Saints’ newly released EP Misery is a good follow-up to the band’s 2017 debut album Alive.  While it only boasts four song spanning a total of 15 minutes, the EP shows this Austin, TX-based band is still “alive” and has plenty of heart left.  Yes, those terrible puns were intended.  That is proven through the record’s accessible musical arrangements and equally accessible and relatable lyrical content.  That is proven in all three of the songs examined here.  When they are considered along with the EP’s opener ‘Lines,’ the result is a positive new offering from the band that will leave listeners anything but miserable.  Misery is available now here.  More information on the EP is available along with all of Black Heart Saints’ latest news and more at:




Website: http://blackheartsaintsmusic.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/blackheartsts




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.

Here’s To Hoping We’ll See More Rugrats Sooner Rather Than Later

Courtesy: Nickelodeon/Paramount

Courtesy: Nickelodeon/Paramount










Re-issues.  Most people in this day and age don’t give them the attention or credit that they deserve.  Yet in an age in which prequels, sequels and reboots dominate theaters and in which reboots are beginning to develop a noticeable presence on television, re-issues are becoming critical entertainment outlets.  Whether on DVD or Blu-ray, re-issues are playing increasingly vital for those looking for an alternatives to all of the unoriginal prequels, sequels, reboots (and even overly embellished bioflicks) that are churned out on the big screen and small screen.

Because re-issues are so important for audiences looking for an alternative to the general lack of substantial new or creative material on television and in theaters, it is just as fitting that they receive their own year-ender list.  That being the case, that is exactly what is being presented here, the top new DVD and Blu-ray re-issues of 2017.  Included in this year’s list are re-issues of United Artists’ 1960 romantic dramedy The Apartment courtesy of Arrow Films, MGM’s 1951 sci-fi/horror classic The Man From Planet X, and even re-issues of some classic TV series including the first two seasons of Nickelodeon’s timeless animated series  Rugrats.  Those two sets, previously released via Amazon (along with the series’ other eight seasons) take the top two spots on this list.

As with every previous list, this list features this critic’s Top 10 titles as well as five additional titles for a total of 15 titles.  Without any further ado, here for your consideration is Phil’s Picks’ 2017 Top 10 New DVD/BD Re-Issues.


  1. RugratsSeason 1
  2. RugratsSeason 2
  3. The Old Dark House
  4. The Man From Planet X
  5. Terror In A Texas Town
  6. Misery
  7. The Apartment
  8. Yes Virginia, There Is A Santa Claus
  9. The Yogi Bear ShowThe Complete Series
  10. Spongebob SquarepantsThe First 100 Episodes
  11. Where On Earth Is Carmen San Diego? — The Complete Series
  12. The Love Of A Woman
  13. The Big Knife
  14. Car Wash
  15. Cheech & Chong’s Next Movie

That’s it for this list, but not for the DVD and Blu-ray titles.  There are still lists for the year’s top new family DVDs/BDs, grown-up DVDs/BDs, Children’s DVDs/BDs and maybe even the year’s top new independent movies and theatrical releases.  Time will tell if I have time to get to them.  Either way, there’s still more to come, so stay tuned!

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.