The Lonely Ones Debuts New Single, ‘Change The Station,’ Companion Video

Courtesy:Imagen Records

Independent rock band The Lonely Ones is giving audiences their first preview of its upcoming debut EP.

The band debuted the as-yet-untitled EP’s lead single, ‘Change The Station‘ Friday along with the song’s companion video. The song boasts a modern rock style musical arrangement that is akin to works from the likes of Small Town Titans. One can also argue there is a comparison to some songs from the likes of Shinedown and other similar acts in the arrangement.

The lyrical content that accompanies the song’s musical arrangement is a clear statement about everything that has taken place across America in recent months. It is a gripping commentary whose content works well with the song’s musical arrangement.

The video that accompanies single mirrors the energy and urgency in the song’s collective musical and lyrical content. It features the band performing its single in a studio setting. Each member performs his respective part to the song while cameras spin — almost to dizzying lengths — around the group.

‘Change the Station’ is just the latest single from The Lonely Ones. The band gained acclaim last year for its cover of Queen’s ‘Flash Gordon/The Hero‘ and its original tune ‘Real Big Trouble‘ as well as its other originals, ‘Eternal Sadness‘ and ‘The Lonely One.’

Queen member Brian May and Flash Gordon himself — Sam J. Jones — praised The Lonely ones for its take on ‘Flash Gordon/The Hero.’

May said of the cover through a prepared statement, “What a fantastic cover! I didn’t realize they were going to go into The Hero and the whole reprise…magnificent!”

Jones had the following to say of the cover.

“This is one of the best covers I have ever heard and seen,” he said. “What a gifted group – The Lonely Ones are for everyone of us, from the 1980’s to right now!”

It is unknown if the band’s cover of ‘Flash Gordon/The Hero’ or ‘Real Big Trouble’ will feature in The Lonely Ones’ upcoming EP. Other than the fact that ‘Change the Station’ will feature in the record, all that is known about the record is that it is expected for release this year through Imagen Records.

Front man Marty McCoy recently spoke about the EP’s upcoming release.

“We’re very excited to partner with Imagen Records in 2021,” he said. “They put a deal on the table that was very artist friendly and their excitement about the band has been contagious. It’s a great team with Bob Winegard, Shauna O’Donnell, Steven Nathan and Morgan Rose. The music industry is constantly changing and these cats have their ears to the ground. We are looking forward to this new adventure with Imagen on our side.”

Winegard spoke warmly of The Lonely Ones in his own statement.

“I am very excited to have The Lonely Ones on the Imagen Records roster,”  said  Winegard. “I knew from the moment I heard their songs that this band was something special. They are hit makers!”

Rose, who is the head of A&R at Imagen Records and is also the longtime drummer for Sevendust also shared his thoughts on the band’s signing.

‘I’ve known Marty and the boys for most of my career,” he said. “When the opportunity to sign them came up, I jumped at it. This band is stacked with hooks and tons of attitude. I can’t wait for the world to hear what they have to say,”

More information on The Lonely Ones’ new single is available along with all of the band’s latest news at The Lonely Ones’ official Facebook page.

To keep up with the latest entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/phispicks 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.

Alborn Debuts New Single, ‘Cause To Create’

Courtesy: Imagen Records/ADA/Warner Music

Alt-metal band Alborn debuted its latest single and its companion video over the weekend.

The band debuted its new single ‘Cause to Create‘ and its visualizer Friday. The song’s musical arrangement, like that of Alborn’s previous single — ‘Full Circle‘ — presents a distinct aggro-rock approach with that boasts plenty of heavy, crunching guitars and gritty, screaming vocals.

Front man Justin Taylor talked about the song’s lyrical theme in a prepared statement.

“We wrote ‘Cause To Create’ about someone not only getting in the way of your own decisions, but making those decisions for you,” he said. “I think the pandemic has left everyone feeling vulnerable and angry, and we wanted to paint that picture from our perspective.”

As with ‘Full Circle,’ the band’s latest single was co-produced by Morgan Rose (Sevendust) and Jose Urquiza (3 Years Hollow) and engineered by Urquiza at The Attic Recording Studios. James “Fluff” Harley mixed this latest song from Alborn while Vlado Meller mastered the song.

Formed in 2016, Alborn features the lineup of Taylor on vocals and guitar, Alex Raser on drums, Zame Lewis on bass, an Nate Guske on guitar. The band’s win in a battle of the bands competition earned the band a recording session with Urquiza. Rose heard the demos that the session spawned and came on board to work with the band. 

Rose said of the sessions that he and Urquiza worked on with Alborn, “I was brought in to do some producing with Alborn and what grabbed my attention immediately was that they refused to conform to a formula. They wanted to be themselves from the start. It’s rare to find a band so young not wanting to follow an easy trend. I was impressed right out of the gate.”

Those sessions led Rose, who not only plays drums with Sevendust, but also serves as an A&R rep for Imagen Records (ADA/Warner Music), to get the band signed to the label.

“When the opportunity opened up for me to sign Alborn to Imagen, I jumped on it, said Rose. “I’ve known these guys for years and have worked closely with them. The songwriting is so unique to me. It’s fresh and not predictable. I think people will get so much out of what this band has to say.”

The record deal led to the release of the band’s then new EP Impairative in August.

The band debuted the video for its cover of ‘We Die Young’ on June 25.

More information on Alborn’s new single is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:

Websitehttps://www.albornmusic.com

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/albornofficial

Twitterhttps://twitter.com/albornofficial

To keep up with the latest entertainment news and reviews, go online to https://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.

Rock Super Group Takes Top Honors In Phil’s Picks’ 2020 Best New EPs

Courtesy: Wiretap Records

Another year has come and another year is almost gone.  Only a handful of weeks remain in this year, which means many record companies have already turned their focus to 2021.  Even with the record labels turning their attention to the new year, there is still work to be done this year.  The work in question is a look back at the best of the year’s new music.  For this critic, that look back starts at the smallest level, EPs.  Those who have followed this critic’s daily ramblings year in and year out know that the year-enders have always started with the smallest records, the EPs, and this year is no different.  This year has seen a variety of interesting EPs released from across the musical universe.  They include records released by labels and independently by the acts in question. 

Featured in this critic’s list of this year’s are new offerings from Hell or Highwater (which is fronted by Atreyu’s Brandon Saller), Another Day Dawns, and even independent artist Vast Caldera among others.  Topping this year’s list is an offering from the “super group” In Parallel.

As with every year past, this critic’s list features not 10, but 15 titles.  The top 10 titles are the primary titles, while the next five are honorable mention titles.  With everything noted, here with out any further ado, is Phil’s Picks Top 10 New EPs of 2020.

PHIL’S PICKS 2020 TOP 10 NEW EPs

  1. In Parallel – Fashioner
  2. Mark Morton – Ether
  3. Killswitch Engage – Atonement II: B-Sides For Charity
  4. Vast Caldera – Vast Caldera I
  5. Another Day Dawns – Stranger
  6. Hell or Highwater – Lost at Sonic Ranch
  7. Stabbing Westward – Dead and Gone
  8. Lord—Chaos Raining
  9. KB & The Idyllwilde – I Just Wanna Love You, I Just Wanna Let You
  10. The Run Around – Bombs Away
  11. Morgan Rose – Controlled Chaos
  12. Zero Theorum – The Killing: Part I
  13. Hold On Hollywood – Love Stories
  14. South of Eden – Talk
  15. The Jacks – Remember You

Next up from Phil’s Picks is the list of the year’s top new independent albums.  This year has produced some impressive new independent albums.  Stay tuned for that.

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.

Sevendust Drummer’s New EP Shows More Control Than Chaos

Courtesy: Rise Records

Sevendust’s members have been busy this  year maintaining the band’s long-held title of the hardest working band in rock.  Guitarist Clint Lowery released two new solo recordings this year – an album, God Bless The Renegades and an EP, Grief & Distance –and the band as a whole has released a new album, Blood & Stone.  Drummer Morgan Rose added to the band’s new releases Friday with his latest studio recording, his new EP Controlled Chaos.  The six-song record is another positive presentation from Rose, who in fact enlisted his Sevendust band mate Lowery to handle guitars for the EP (again cementing the noted reputation even more for the band).  That is proven in part through the record’s musical arrangements.  They will be discussed shortly. Its lyrical content plays as much into its presentation as its musical content.  This aspect will be addressed a little later.  The record’s production rounds out its most important elements.  Each item noted here is important in its own way to the whole of this new offering from two-fifths of Sevendust.  All things considered, the EP proves itself an offering that every Sevendust fan will enjoy.

Sevendust drummer Morgan Rose’s new EP Controlled Chaos is a work that will appeal to every Sevendust fan.  That is proven in part through the record’s musical content.  While the title of Rose’s new record is Controlled Chaos, there is no sense of chaos by any means throughout the record’s musical arrangements.  Though there is a lot of control.  The information provided about Rose’s new EP states that the record took six days to track.  That in itself could be considered chaotic, being such a short time frame.  Even being such short time frame, the result really was so controlled, precise and powerful in its musical presentation.  So to that end, the EP’s title does fit at least to a point.  Audiences will easily recognize the influence of Rose’s primary gig throughout the record in the powerful melodic hard rock style approach to most of the songs.  The most surprising of the record’s arrangements comes in its closer, ‘Exhale.’  This arrangement does take its own influence from Rose’s time with Sevendust, but is just so powerful in its simplicity.  It is just Rose on vocals along with a piano.  It is a powerful exhibition of Rose’s vocal talent as it shows that ability to really move listeners with his voice alone.  The addition of the other elements, which will be discussed at more length in the examination of the EP’s production, adds even more impact to the minimalist composition.  Between that, the Sevendust influence that is evident in the record’s opener and the rest of the album, and the growth that Rose and company show alongside that influence, the record’s musical content in whole forms a solid foundation for Controlled Chaos.  The lyrical content that accompanies that musical content builds strongly on the record’s presentation.

The lyrical content featured in the record’s lead single is proof of the importance of the EP’s lyrical content.  The song’s lyrical content focuses n “a narcissist,” according to comments from Rose in information provided about the EP.  That is pointed out right from the song’s outset, in which rose sings, “Seething under my skin/Protecting all that I am/Anticipating for the last time/You can be/broken/All that you want/’Cause I won’t give anymore.”  Right from this listeners can infer that the speaker is someone who is very angry in dealing with thoughts and emotions brought about by that person.  The song’s chorus adds to the statement, as Rose sings, “Wish you feel alive inside/But nothing can change your mind/Erase the shadow left/behind/Stop and realize/I’m not the answer.”  When he says, “Stop and realize/I’m not the answer,” that leaves zero doubt as to the noted statement.  This is a matter that has led the main subject to reach a near breaking point.  When all of this is considered with the song’s deeply emotional musical content, the whole of the song gains such impact.  It is just one example of what makes the album’s lyrical content important.  The lyrical content featured in ‘Exhale’ does its own share to prove that importance.

‘Exhale’ is so powerful, lyrically, because it comes across as someone who is letting out so much inner pain.  Rose pointed out in an interview that the song’s lyrical content is biographical about himself.  He noted, I wanted to semi-document how I felt being in a bad place and getting to a good place.”  The larger story that he told had to do with himself going through a lot of personal adversity and coming out better in the end.  This can be inferred even without a lyrics sheet to reference.  What is so interesting here is the reserved nature in the wording of the lyrics.  He sings in part in the song’s lead verse, “Holy angel/Forgive what I’ve become/Became the man who is here/Now the urge controlling my every thought/It’s telling me, “disappear”/All this…has me crippled to my knees…/The worst is done/Now that I believe/I’ll fade into the water/Where I can finally breathe/Where I can finally breathe.”  This is all important to address because Rose noted in his interview, that ““I’ve had semi-documented issues with my own problems. I think a lot of us wonder, ‘How many people will show up at my funeral?’ I was in a pretty good place before I got sick and ended up in the hospital last year, and I was in a great place after getting better. I was able to look and see what the reaction would be if something catastrophic happened to me. I was blown away. I had gotten myself together and made it through a tough time. I was able to see how much everyone around me really cared. It was humbling.”  His statement in this verse about things being better, and being able to breathe” is that recovery and seeing how many people care.  It all comes across as perhaps Rose talking about dealing with depression.  He adds, “the worst is done…” showing even more the story.  This adds even more depth to the song’s lyrical content, and in turn, the impact of the song in whole when the song’s musical content is considered along with this content.  It is just one more way in which the EP’s lyrical content is proven so important.  The lyrical content featured in ‘Clarity’ is one more example of the importance of the EP’s lyrical content.

Rose said of the lyrical content featured in ‘Clarity,’ “It’s the feeling of washing away the day, so you can start fresh tomorrow.  I’m getting rid of the turmoil, stopping my mind, and finding a way to restart.”  Everyone has been at that point in life at least once if not more, where they have had to take a step back and put everything into perspective, which is what Rose seems to be talking about here.  He delivers the message here as he sings in part in the song’s chorus, asking “what’s the meaning of it all…” and that we need to “Turn the page and look inside/To find the reason you’re inside your own world.”  That couple of line is self explanatory, considering Rose’s statement as to the meaning in the song’s lyrics.  Again, it serves to help make the song that much more accessible for audiences.  As a result, it becomes another clear example of what makes the EP’s lyrical content so important to the record’s bigger picture.  When the lyrical and musical aspects of the EP are paired, they make for a presentation that ensures audiences’ engagement and entertainment.  They are just one portion of what makes the record appealing.  Its production rounds out its most important elements.

The production that went into the creation of Controlled Chaos is key in its own way to this record’s presentation.  The production of ‘Exhale,’ as noted earlier, is one clear example of that aspect’s importance.  The mostly minimalist approach to the song, what with Rose singing against a piano is so moving.  The airy, ethereal echo effect that was used in each element makes that simplicity work so well.  The result is that the song sounds so rich and full, even in its simplicity.  The layering of Rose’s vocals and the addition of the extra sound effects enriches the song even more.  It adds to the contemplative nature of the song, in turn, adding even more to the song’s impact.  The balance of the instrumentation and vocals in ‘Faster Man’ ensures here, that every element shines in its own right, ensuring that song’s impact, too.  Much the same can be said of each line within the whole of ‘Come Alive.’  Rose’s screams and his “spoken” lines are so powerful in their own way here while Lowery’s guitar and Jason Christopher’s (Prong, Corey Taylor) bass line flesh out the song so fully.  Taking all of this into account along with the production that went into each of the EP’s other songs, the end result is a presentation that works just as well for its overall sound as for its content.  All things considered, the record proves itself a work that, again, will appeal to every Sevendust fan.

Morgan Rose’s debut EP Controlled Chaos is an impressive offering from the longtime Sevendust drummer.  That is proven in part through the record’s musical arrangements.  The arrangements featured in this record clearly exhibit influences from Rose’s long-running career with his primary band as well as his own influences.  The lyrical content that accompanies the record’s musical content adds its own appeal to the presentation.  That is due to the fact that it is just as accessible as the record’s musical arrangements.  The record’s production rounds out its most important elements.  That is because it is responsible for the record’s content sounding so good.  Each item noted here is important in its own way to the whole of the record.  All things considered, the EP proves to be a record that will appeal to every Sevendust fan.  Controlled Chaos is available now.  More information on the EP is available along with all of Morgan Rose’s latest news at:

Website: http://www.morganfknrose.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/MorganRose7d

Twitter: http://twitter.com/morgan7d

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

Alborn Debuts New Single, ‘Full Circle’

Courtesy: O’Donnell Media Group

Alt-metal band Alborn debuted its latest single this week.

The band debuted its single ‘Full Circle‘ Friday. The song was co-produced by Morgan Rose (Sevendust) and Jose Urquiza (3 Years Hollow) and mixed by Elvis Baskette. Considering Rose’s participation in the song’s creation, the Sevendust comparison in the song’s arrangement is no surprise.

The fiery energy in the song’s musical arrangement helps translate the song’s lyrical theme, which, according to front man Justin Taylor, centers on knowing one’s potential.

“’Full Circle’ is about getting stuck in a routine that keeps you from being what you want to be,” he said. “Repetition is inevitable, but negative repetition is cancerous. It can be very difficult to step out of a comfort zone, but at some point we all have to understand that we deserve more in life.”

More information on Alborn’s new single is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:

Websitehttp://www.albornmusic.com

Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/albornofficial

Twitterhttp://twitter.com/albornofficial

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.

Alborn Signs Distribution Deal With Imagen Records; Live Show Set For Saturday

Courtesy: Imagen Records/ADA/Warner Music

Alt-metal  band Alborn made a big announcement this week.

The independent band announced Monday, it has signed a new distribution deal with Imagen Records (ADA/Warner Music).  The deal will see the band release its new EP Impairative Friday.

Imagen Records A&R Rep (and Sevendust drummer) Morgan Rose talked about the band’s signing in a recent interview.

“When the opportunity opened up for me to sign Alborn to Imagen, I jumped on it, he said. “I’ve known these guys for years and have worked closely with them. The songwriting is so unique to me. It’s fresh and not predictable. I think people will get so much out of what this band has to say.”

Imagen Records President Bob Winegard added to Rose’s statements.

“I’m excited to have them on our roster and I can’t wait until people hear their new music,” said Winegard.

The five-song record features four original songs and a cover of Alice In Chains’ hit song ‘We Die Young.’ Impairative‘s track listing is noted below.

“Impairative” Tracklisitng:

1) Prime
2) Let Me Bleed
3) Waves
4) The Maze
5) We Die Young (Alice In Chains Cover)

The band debuted the video for its cover of ‘We Die Young’ on June 25.  The video is a CG presentation that features images of items, such as bullets, crime scene tape at a house, and skeletons on a subway train.  Alborn’s take on the song stays largely true to its source material from start to end.

Alborn formed in 2016 in northern Illinois.  The band is composed of Justin Taylor (guitar/vocals), Alex Raser (drums/vocals), Zame Lewis (bass) and Nate Guske (guitar).  The band’s music has been compared to works from the likes of Deftones and Alice in Chains.

The band’s win in a battle of the bands competition led the group earned the band a recording session of Jose Urquiza of the band 3 years Hollow.  Rose heard the demos that the session spawned and came on board to work with the band.  Rose said of the sessions that he and Urquiza worked on with Alborn, “I was brought in to do some producing with Alborn and what grabbed my attention immediately was that they refused to conform to a formula. They wanted to be themselves from the start. It’s rare to find a band so young not wanting to follow an easy trend. I was impressed right out of the gate.”

The successes that the band has experienced since will result Friday in the release of its new EP.

In other news Alborn is scheduled to perform live Saturday at the Apollo Theatre in Belvidere, IL.  The band will serve as support for Monroe as it celebrates the release of its new record.

104.9 The X is presenting the concert.  Kegel Harley-Davidson is the concert’s primary sponsor.  Information and tickets are available here.

More information on Alborn’s new EP is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:

 

Website: http://www.albornmusic.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/albornofficial

 

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.

Disciples Of Verity Debuts Video For ‘Unsteady’ Cover

Disciples of Verity is taking X Ambassadors’ hit song ‘Unsteady.’

The band debuted the video for its cover of the song Friday through Loudwire.  While DOV’s cover stays largely true to its source material, the heavy guitars and drums add a new edge to the song, giving it a new identity that is just as interesting as the original composition from X Ambassadors.

Directed by Dale “Rage” Resteghini an produced by Kim Resteghini, the video features the band performing its cover of ‘Unsteady’ “in a remote area of New York state.

“It was an extreme honor rockin’ on set with exciting new band D.O.V. and their iconic front man Corey Glover,” said Dale. “The whole band brought their friends and family and they enjoyed all the high wattage and fire as the band delivered an incredible visceral performance!”

Drummer Corey Pierce expanded on Resteghini’s statement with his own thoughts.

“It was an incredible day in a life that has had many, many incredible days,” said Pierce. “We shot an amazing video with an incredible look built by the efforts of a team full of highly motivated and energized people. The finished product is way beyond the expectations any of us had. We could not have asked for a better crew, experience and finished product.”

Courtesy: Loudwire/Disciples of Verity

The debut of DOV’s cover of ‘Unsteady’ and its video comes more than a month after the band debuted the video for its then latest single ‘The Flow.’

The song is featured on the band’s forthcoming debut album Pragmatic Sanction, which is scheduled for release Aug. 7 through The Label Group and INgrooves.  Pre-orders for the album are open now.

The album’s third single, it comes more than five months after the band debuted the album’s second single, ‘Lying To Myself.’  That song featured a guest appearance by Phil Demmel (BPMD, ex-Machine Head, Vio-lence) on guitar.

The band debuted the album’s lead single ‘Worthy’ last year through a partnership with Revolver magazine.  The song featured a guest appearance by Jeff Loomis (Arch Enemy, Nevermore) on guitar.

‘The Flow’ features a guest appearance by Sevendust drummer Morgan Rose, who said he was excited to be included in the song.

“Any time you get an opportunity to track music with a legend, you jump,” he said.  “The track f’n rips. Corey sounds better than ever.”

Rose’s addition to the song, coupled with the band’s members — Corey Glover (Living Colour, Bowie Experience), George Pond (ex-Negative Sky), Dannny Puma (Negative Sky), Corey Pierce (Ex-God Forbid) and Mark Monjoy (Sekond Skyn) — the song bears those hints of a Sevendust influence.

The song’s lyrical theme is heavy in its own right, according to a statement from Glover.

“The idea that the world isn’t giving you what you deserve is universal,” Glover said. “Given the unrest in the world, today it’s more than an idea.”

‘The Flow’ is available to stream and download here.

More information on Disciples of Verity’s new single is available along with all of the band’s latest news is available online at:

 

Websitehttps://disciplesofverity.bandcamp.com

Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/DisciplesofVerity

 

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.

 

Walking With Giants’ Debut LP Is Set To Become Well-Known In The Rock World

Courtesy: PFA Media/Walking With Giants, LLC

Courtesy: PFA Media/Walking With Giants, LLC

“It’s about thinking in ways you haven’t thought prior. “Instead of succumbing to the constant influence of negativity, you look inside yourself, find a solution you’ve never tried before, and end up in a new place you’ve never been. It’s about finding a different perspective.” Those are the words of Walking with Giants founder and front man Gary Noon in discussing the title of the debut album from his new project Walking With Giants and the content contained within the record’s eleven tracks. The album, Worlds Unknown, will be released in stores and online tomorrow, January 15th via Walking With Giants, LLC. The record’s musical content might not necessarily take listeners to a place that they’ve never been. But that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It boasts a familiar 90s rock influence throughout, courtesy of some very well-known names—Morgan Rose and Clint Lowery of Sevendust, and Brian Marshall of Creed/Alter Bridge. While the album’s musical content might not necessarily leave listeners in a different place, the album’s lyrical content just might. As Noon explains about the album’s lyrical content that “I want people to walk away from the record feeling something different. “Maybe they can relate and want to apply it to their lives and situations and find some inspiration.” Whether or not listeners feeling something different after listening to this record, they will come out of it knowing that they have heard a record that easily holds its own against the current crop of offerings in the rock world today.

Walking With Giants’ debut LP Worlds Unknown is not exactly unknown to audiences in terms of its musical or lyrical content. However in listening through the whole of its eleven song, thirty-seven-minute run time listeners will agree that despite this it still proves to be a record that easily holds its own against the current crop of offerings in the rock world today. Any of the songs featured in this record could be cited to support that argument. One of the most notable of the songs that could be cited is the Clint Lowery-crafted opus ‘Heavy Hand.’ The song’s melodic rock sound fits easily alongside that of Sevendust, Theory of a Deadman, and other current major-name acts of that realm. Noon and Lowery’s dual guitar attack sets against Rose’s work behind the kit and Marshall’s solid bass line to make a solid foundation for the song. The song’s lyrical content builds on that foundation with a concept that Noon explains, “Lyrically, it’s a guy who’s having an argument with himself like, ‘What the hell kind of a person am I? One day, I feel strong. The next day, I feel totally inadequate.’ It’s the struggle of figuring out who you are.” He sings here, “Another day here/Lost without a voice/Invisible, expendable/We drop off one by one/What am I/The useless/What are you/The judge/Someday I’ll prove my worth/But you’re holding on to find a dream/The time has come for the world to see/The world to see/To find that place where I can be/Trust it’s not the end of me.” He goes on to sing in the song’s second verse, “Chasin’ the praises that fill the void/Too logical/Regrettable/You’ve set out to destroy/What if this is useless/Then who am I at all/I am here for what it’s worth/Trying hard to find that dream.” The inner battle that the song’s main figure is fighting is clear in these lines. And when that inner emotional battle is set against the power of the song’s musical content, the whole of the creation is a song that becomes one of the album’s brightest. It is just one of the featured songs that makes this record stand out. ‘Guilty One’ also serves as a good example of what makes this album stand out.

‘Heavy Hand’ is a key example of what makes Worlds Unknown standout from its counterparts so far this year. It is a solid, heavy piece that will also have listeners thinking in hearing its lyrical content. It is just one example of what makes this record stand out, however. ‘Guilty One’ is another song that can easily be cited as one of the album’s high points. Right off the bat, the song conjures thoughts of Staind and Breaking Benjamin with its semi-gloomcore sound. Noon even sounds like eerily like Staind front man Aaron Lewis in this piece. The similarity is so close that in all honesty if a person heard this song and Noon’s vocals without knowing it wasn’t Lewis singing, one would actually think that one was hearing Staind. That is especially the case considering the song’s lyrical content. Noon sings in this song, “The ice runs through my veins/The cold it separates us/The chaos you create takes over/The more I see the less I’m giving up.” There’s no denying the stylistic similarity between these line and those presented in songs from the likes of Staind, Breaking Benjamin, and others of that ilk. That is proven just as much as Noon sings in the song’s second verse, “The choices that we’ve made/Your consequences follow/The safety net you bring helps no one/But the more I see the less I’m giving up.” Noon seems to be setting up a scenario of someone that has created a rather negative situation for himself/herself and others because of the mindset of said individual. The mood of the song’s subject is illustrated quite well through Noon’s vocal talents and those of his fellow musicians. The end result of both elements together here is yet another song that shows clearly why WWG’s debut release stands (and walks) tall among 2016’s early crop of new rock releases.

Both ‘Heavy Hand’ and ‘Guilty One’ are key examples of what makes WWG’s debut album stand out early in 2016’s fied of new rock offerings. As important as they are to the overall presentation of Worlds Unknown they are not the album’s only high points. ‘Solid Ground’ is the album’s final full song (as in complete with music and lyrics). it is both another of the album’s overall high points and an equally good way to close out the album. That is because it exhibits more recent influences (I.E. Alter Bridge) in its musical content. That should come as no surprise considering that Creed/Alter Bridge bassist Brian Marshall worked on the album and fellow Creed/Alter Bridge band mate Scott “Flip” Phillips worked on WWG’s debut EP only a couple of years ago. There is also a hint of Sevendust here in the song’s melodic rock sound. Again it should come as no surprise to audiences. Considering the influences of both bands in this song’s creation the song’s musical content shows in the end to be plenty of reason for listeners to hear this song. The song’s lyrical content is just as important to its presentation as its musical content. Lyrically speaking, this song completely exhibits everything that Noon noted of the album attempting to get people to thinking ways that they never had. That is clear in the song’s lead verse and chorus in which Noon sings, “Don’t you know/You’re about to step off the edge of the life you know/You know/Long way down/You can try not to fall but you’re losing ground/You know/It’s a life you chose/Now I put my feet on solid ground/I found a reason that I’m living for/That I’m living for. he comes across as saying here that what happens to a person is the result of his or her choices and he is confident in his choices. He goes on to sing in the song’s second verse, “Don’t they say/That you’ve gotta get out and start seizing the day/You know/Time to go/Deep inside/Take a look at the person/The one you can’t hide/You know/It’s the way that you grow/It’s the life that you chose.” From there he and his band mates reprise the song’s chorus before hitting the song’s bridge and returning to the chorus one more time. What Noon comes across as saying in the second verse is that people need to stop and really take a good look at themselves and realize, again, that people make their own paths in life as a result of their choices. The urgency in the song’s up-tempo musical content serves quite well to drive home the importance of that message. The two elements come together to make a song that is the perfect closing statement from Noon and company and one more standout example of what makes Worlds Unknown a record that every rock fan–not just fans of Alter Bridge, Creed, and Sevendust–should know.

Walking With Giants’ debut album Worlds Unknown is an album that rock fans across the board should know. That is because its eleven songs (technically nine full songs) present influences from some very familiar names within the rock *ahem* world. The lyrical content presented within each of the record’s featured songs strengthens the record even more. The combination of both elements throughout makes Worlds Unknown a record that is set to become very well-known throughout the rock world. It will be available Friday, January 15th. More information on Worlds Unknown is available online along with all of Walking With Giants’ latest news at:

Website: http://www.wwgiants.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/wwgofficial

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.

Time Travelers & Bonfires Boasts Some Of Sevendust’s Best Music To Date

Courtesy:  7Bros Records/Asylum

Courtesy: 7Bros Records/Asylum/In De Goot Entertainment/Alternative Distribution Alliance

Veteran hard rock band Sevendust is one of the most highly revered bands in the world of rock and hard rock. That is because every one of its now ten full length studio albums has exhibited the band’s growth while maintaining a certain familiar heavy vibe throughout each record. The band’s latest album Time Travelers & Bonfires is no exception to that rule. Even being a largely acoustic release (there are some non-acoustic elements spaced throughout the record), the band has somehow managed to maintain that familiar heaviness that is a trademark for Sevendust’s albums. That is evident right from the album’s opener, ‘Come Down.’ It’s just as evident late in the album with the band’s re-worked acoustic take on ‘Denial.’ This re-worked classic is especially interesting as it presents a whole new emotional vibe in its acoustic state. It makes the song even heavier in an emotional manner of speaking. And then there is the album’s closer, ‘Black,’ which is also the band’s first major hit. This song is just as heavy in its acoustic form as it is in its original take. What’s more it’s just as heavy as the other acoustic re-works that populate this album. Together with the other noted songs (and those not noted for reasons of space), it completes an album that any diehard Sevendust fan will enjoy no less with each listen.

The members of Sevendust have managed to make each of the band’s now ten albums sound different from the previous release all while maintaining a certain heaviness throughout each record. The band’s latest release is no different in that aspect. Even on an album that is mostly acoustic, the band has managed to maintain that heaviness while creating something different, both on its new songs and those that have been re-worked. This is evident right from the album’s opener, ‘Come Down.’ This piece could have fit on any of the band’s previous albums comfortably. Lyrically, it’s such a bold statement. Front man Lajon Witherspoon sings defiantly in the song’s opening verse, “I guess for now/I’m gonna up and run away/My mind’s made up/I’m not the flaw/I’m not gonna fall in the grave/Just to prove you wrong.” The verse here is pretty cut and dry. It’s stating that some things just aren’t worth the fight and all the trouble. That’s made even more clear in the song’s chorus, as Witherspoon sings “You know you’re wrong/So come down/You must be out of your mind/We’re staying here forever, yeah/Until we’re all done throwing life away.” It’s such a bold statement. Yet, the balance of power and gentility in both Witherspoon’s vocals and the song’s musical side make it such a heavy song in its own right. Yet again it shows the band’s continued ability to make a song that has its own identity from previous works yet still has that familiar musical and lyrical heaviness; This, even though it’s not one of the band’s full-on pieces.

‘Come Down’ is one of six new tracks included on Time Travelers & Bonfires. Audiences will find that just as with ‘Come Down’, the other five new tracks included on this record also manage in their own way to build a different sound while maintaining Sevendust’s trademark heavy vibe. ‘Under It All’, the second of the new tracks proves that as it starts off with a short, but foreboding piano riff that conjures thoughts of Nine Inch Nails circa 1994. It’s just one more example of how the album’s new tracks each continue to exhibit the creativity and talent of Sevendust as a whole. Of course the band’s re-worked classics do their own part in making this album enjoyable, too. One prime example of that is the re-worked acoustic take on ‘Denial.’ The song, which was originally part of the band’s 1999 album Home, takes on a whole new life in its acoustic format here. The song’s original take is heavy and defiant. This take on the song is totally different. The mix of the acoustic guitars and Witherspoon’s vocals maintain the song’s anger. But there’s a certain increased emotional depth to the song with that mix. It gives the image of a man feeling anger and sadness all at the same time as he sings, “You never say what you mean/All I hear is scream/Never say that to me/Never say that to me/Wipe that s&*% off your face/Let’s not stop till we bleed/The more you spit out your mouth/The less I believe/Denial seems it had to come/Relied on me to say it all/Denial has left you all alone.” The song really does develop its own identity separate from its original take in this format. It could almost be considered a whole new song because of that wholly different emotion exhibited here. Once more, it shows the creativity and talent of the band. It is definitely one more of this album’s highest of points. It’s not the last of the album’s high points, either.

Sevendust exhibits so much creativity and talent throughout the course of the songs that make up Time Travelers & Bonfires. That has been shown already in the band’s re-worked acoustic take on ‘Denial’ and its new song ‘Come Down.’ Fittingly, Sevendust closes out its new album with the song that started it all in a re-worked acoustic take on ‘Black.’ There was no better final touch to this album than the band’s first hit. Whereas ‘Denial’ and other re-worked songs included on Time Travelers & Bonfires develop a whole new identity in their acoustic versions, this song is much the same in its acoustic take as in its original heavier take. That’s actually a good thing in the case of this song. One can’t help but wonder if it could in fact be better than the original take. It has just as much ferocity as the song’s original take. But there’s a certain different punch about it that puts it over the top in this setting. That punch makes it the perfect last impression for this record. It leaves the album feeling complete in every sense of the word. And in turn, listeners will feel after having heard this last dose of acoustic heaviness just why Time Travelers & Bonfires is one of Sevendust’s best albums to date.

Time Travelers & Bonfires is available now in stores and online. Audiences can even purchase the band’s new album at its live shows. Fans might even get to hear these acoustic recordings live as Sevendust makes its way across the country in support of its new album. The band is scheduled to perform live May 24th in El Paso, Texas. It wraps up May with dates in Illinois, Michigan, and Indiana before to Council Bluffs, Iowa to start off the month of June. The band’s most current tour schedule is available online now at http://www.facebook.com/sevendustofficial and http://www.sevendust.com. All of the latest news and more from the band is available on both websites. 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.

Sevendust Announces Details For New Album, Tour

Courtesy:  ABC Promotions

Courtesy: ABC Promotions

The long wait for Sevendust’s new album is almost over.  The band—Lajon Witherspoon (vocals), Vince Hornsby (bass), Clint Lowery (guitar/vocals), Morgan Rose (drums/vocals), and John Connolly (guitar/vocals)—has announced that it will release its fan-funded acoustic album Time Travelers & Bonfires will be released nationwide in April.  The upcoming all-acoustic compilation will feature a collection of new songs mixed in with re-worked versions of songs such as: ‘Black’, ‘Gone’, ‘Denial’, ‘Karma’, ‘Trust’ and ‘Crucified’ just to name a handful of songs.  Time Travelers& Bonfires isn’t the first time that Sevendust’s members have delved into the acoustic side of their songs.  The band released the highly acclaimed live acoustic recording Southside Double-wide in 2004.  One writer with All Music Guide wrote of that recording, “Fans should invest readily in Southside Double-Wide…Sevendust’s famously confrontational sound smolders, and damn it if their sensitive side isn’t just as fiery.” The complete listing for Time Travelers & Bonfires is available below.

Time Travelers & Bonfires Track Listing

1. Come Down

2. Under It All

3. The Wait

4. Upbeat Sugar

5. One Life

6. Bonfire

7. Gone

8. Denial

9. Trust

10. Crucified

11. Karma

12. Black

In conjunction with the album’s release, the band has also announced a supporting tour beginning April 1st in its hometown of Atlanta, GA.  The band’s “An Acoustic Evening with Sevendust” tour spans twenty-eight dates.  The current tour schedule sees the band making its way from the south to the West Coast (including the Pacific Northwest) before swinging back through the nation’s heartland and back around to the Northeast.  The most current tour schedule is listed below.

AN ACOUSTIC EVENING WITH SEVENDUST TOUR

DATE               CITY                             VENUE

Tue 4/1             Athens, GA                   Georgia Theatre

Wed 4/2            Destin, FL                     Club LA

Fri 4/4               Houston, TX                   Scout Bar

Sat 4/5              Dallas, TX                      Trees

Sun 4/6             Austin, TX                     Emo’s

Tue 4/8             Tempe, AZ                    Marquee

Thu 4/10            El Cajon, CA                 Sycuan Casino

Fri 4/11             Los Angeles, CA            House Of Blues

Sat 4/12            Las Vegas, NV              Vinyl at Hard Rock

Sun 4/13           Reno, NV                      Knitting Factory

Wed 4/16          Sacramento, CA            Ace Of Spades

Fri 4/18             Seattle, WA                  El Corazon

Sat 4/19            Portland, OR                 Hawthorne Theatre

Sun 4/20           Boise, ID                       Knitting Factory

Mon 4/21           Salt Lake City, UT          The Complex

Tue 4/22            Denver, CO                    Gothic Theatre

Fri 4/25             Joliet, IL                        Mojoes

Sat 4/26            Madison, WI                  Orpheum

Mon 4/28           Detroit, MI                     Royal Oak Music Theatre

Tue 4/29            Cincinnati, OH               Bogart’s

Wed 4/30          Louisville, KY                 Mercury Ballroom

Fri 5/2               Baltimore, MD               Sound Stage

Sat 5/3              Washington, DC            The Howard Theatre

Sun 5/4             New York, NY                Highline Ballroom

Tue 5/6             Hartford, CT                   Webster Theatre

Thu 5/8             Patchogue, NY              Emporium

Fri 5/9               Portland, ME                 Asylum

Sat 5/10            Philadelphia, PA            Electric Factory

Before the band hits the road this Spring, it will be part of the annual ShipRocked cruise.  It will be in good company when the cruise leaves port.  Also scheduled to perform on the cruise are: Papa Roach, Five Finger Death Punch, Three Days Grace, In This Moment, Tremonti, Black Stone Cherry, and a slew of others.  The cruise will depart from the Port of Miami this Sunday, January 26th and will return next Thursday, January 30th.  While at sea, the cruise will take audiences to Great Stirrup Cay, a private island in the Bahamas. A small number of staterooms for this year’s cruise is still available.  Vacationers and audiences get info on that limited space online at the official ShipRocked website, http://www.ShipRocked.com.

More information on Sevendust’s upcoming tour, new album, and more is available online at http://www.sevendust.com, http://www.facebook.com/pages/Sevendust/25493613958, and http://twitter.com/sevendust.  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.