Disciples Of Verity Debuts ‘Worthy’ Lyric Video

Hard rock/metal outfit Disciples of Verity debuted the video for its new single this week.

The band — Corey Glover (Living Colour, Bowie Experience), George Pond (ex-Negative Sky), Danny Puma (Negative Sky) Corey Pierce (ex-God Forbid) and Mark Monjoy (Sekond Skyn) — released the lyric video for their song ‘Worthy’ Thursday through Revolver magazine.  The song is the lead single from the group’s forthcoming album Pragmatic Sanction, which is scheduled for release later this year through The Label Group and INgrooves. The album’s exact release date will be announced soon.

‘Worthy’ features guest guitar work by Jeff Loomis (Arch Enemy, Nevermore).  Loomis’ Nevermore influences are clear in this song alongside Glover’s vocals.  Glover said in a recent interview, the song is lyrically a work that presents a message of overcoming feelings of personal adversity.

“No matter what you’re going through as long as you’re breathing and still here to see another day, it is another chance,” he said.  “Being worthy though, that is the rub you are always trying to figure out.  The heart and mind play against each other.  Your mind says you aren’t good enough, but your heart knows you are worthy.  That said, I am here for a reason.  I am ‘WORTHY!'”

Courtesy: The Label Group/INgrooves/TAG Publicity

More information on Disciples of Verity and the band’s new lyric video is available online now at http://www.facebook.com/Disciplesofverity.

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.

Dave Ellefson Debuts ‘Sleeping Giants’ Video

Courtesy: Combat Records/EMP Label Group

Megadeth bassist Dave Ellefson released his solo debut album last month, and this week, debuted the video for the album’s lead single.

Ellefson, who also heads EMP Label Group, debuted the video Sleeping Giants‘ lead single Friday.  the video features guest appearances from Darryl “DMC” McDaniels, Bumblefoot, Ilias Papadakis (Memorain), Steve Conley (Flotsam  and Jetsam) and Ellefson’s fellow EMP Label Group head Tom Hazaert.

Ellefson talked about the collaboration in a recent interview.

“It was truly an honor to collaborate with DMC, and I think the track came out great,” he said.  “When Thom and DMC wanted to do a collaboration with us, I instantly thought of ‘Sleeping Giants.’  When he [McDaniels] came out to Revolution in Amityville to perform with us and shoot the video, it was an awesome energy.  I think everyone there got a show they won’t ever forget.”

Hazaert expanded on Ellefson’s comments.

“David had all these great instrumental songs laying around, and ‘Sleeping Giants’ was one of them,” he said.  “He suggested I write and record some vocal parts for them, so I called up DMC andasked if he’d want to collaborate with us on a track, and we got to work.  I’ve always loved off-the-wall metal/hip-hop collaborations (E.g. ‘Judgement Night’ — from Onyx and Biohazard) and I think ‘Giants’ definitely draws from that.  The song and video both ended up with a really cool aggressive, old-school New York hardcore/hip-hop feel.  In my book, it doesn’t get any more legendary than Run DMC.  This was definitely one for the history books.”

The video for ‘Sleeping Giants’ was shot on location in Amityville, NY and the Salton Sea in California.  Hazaert and Melody Myers co-directed the video.  It was filmed and edited by Myers/Designed by Melody (Altitudes and Attitude, Escape The Fate).

Sleeping Giants was released July 19 through EMP Label Group and Combat Records.  The record is a compilation of new music from Ellefson as well as demos and previously unreleased material that spans Ellefson’s career outside that with Megadeth.

One of those previously unreleased tracks is the song ‘If You Were God,’ which features a guest appearance from John Bush (Anthrax, Armored Saint).  The CD version features a bonus compilation of artists and songs that are in the EMP and Combat Records stables.

More information on Dave Ellefson’s new video and album is available online now along with all of his latest news at:

 

Website: http://www.davidellefson.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/ellefsondavid

 

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.

‘Jazz And Art’ Paints A Wonderful Picture For Jazz, Art Lovers Alike

Courtesy: Blue Engine Records

The realms of visual and musical arts are two completely different worlds.  One creates pleasure for audiences through the eyes and the other does so through the ears.  That being the case, it makes sense that attempts by anyone to bridge the two mediums have been rare throughout each realm’s modern history.  Early last month though, Wynton Marsalis and the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra built that bridge with their new studio recording.  Aptly titled Jazz And Art, the 10-song album presents a series of compositions that are inspired by a select group of visual artists and their works.  That concept builds the foundation for the 55-minute recording and will be addressed more in-depth shortly.  The arrangements themselves are just as noteworthy as the album’s concept, and will be addressed a little later.  The record’s production rounds out its most important elements and will also be addressed later.  Each item noted here is important in its own right to the whole of the recording.  All things considered, they make this new effort from the group a piece that will appeal to fans of the musical and visual arts alike.

Jazz And Art, the latest full-length studio recording from Wynton Marsalis and the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra, is a work that will unite lovers of the visual and musical arts.  That is due in part to the concept at the heart of the album.  The concept behind the album is the union of the two realms through the creation of songs inspired by a group of visual artists and their works.  It sounds like a bit of a stretch, but is in fact a very smart move.  By creating compositions inspired by artists and their works, the record serves as an entrance into the world of visual art for those who might otherwise have never taken the first step into that world.  It will inspire those listeners to conduct their own research into the artists and paintings in question, which can in turn potentially lead to a new interest and discussions on the noted artists and their works.  The same applies to art lovers who perhaps have never ventured into the jazz realm, opting instead to take in the landscapes painted with brushes instead of with instruments.  Regardless of whether it influences one side, the other, or both, the concept of marrying musical and visual art proves to be a smart move, considering the gap that exists between the two worlds.  It creates a strong foundation for this record.  Building on that foundation and making it stronger are the arrangements themselves.

The arrangements that make up the body of Jazz And Art are important to note in part because of their diversity.  From start to end, listeners get something different with each composition.  There are blues elements featured in the album, as well as big band influences and even some African influence.  The whole thing opens with a trio of works influenced by artist Stuart Davis.  Interestingly enough, Davis was himself inspired by jazz in creating his works during the 1940s and 50s.  All three works are fitting considering the paintings from which they rose.  ‘Mellow Pad,’ with its varied instrumentation – muted trumpet, drums, piano and saxophones – is just as active even in its subtleties as Davis’ painting.  ‘Garage Lights,’ meanwhile presents a rather blues-gospel tinged composition that, when set alongside Davis’ painting, conjures thoughts of perhaps New Orleans.  That is because New Orleans is itself a port town and is steeped in blues and gospel influences.  ‘New York’ meanwhile does its own positive job of capturing the essence of Davis’ painting by the same name.  The light piano line and time keeping echo quite well, the energy exuded in the painting’s colors and lines.  What’s more, it also echoes (on a completely different note) the works of the one and only Vince Guaraldi at times and even Henry Mancini with its horns.  The compositions influenced by painter Winslow Homer (who was known largely for his marine landscapes) offer their own intrigue.  ‘Homer’s Blues’ conjures thoughts of certain songs from the West Side Story soundtrack with its hard bop sound.  The painting that the song’s energy seems to echo is “Snap The Whip,” which he painted in 1872.  The painting features a group of young boys playing a game, aptly titled “Snap The Whip.”  The happiness on the boys’ faces embodies the painting’s purpose of showing the possibilities of the future at the time and the happiness that those thoughts brought about.  This is all of course just this critic’s interpretation.  Obviously jazz was not a thing at all in the late 1800s, but, the positive energy in the painting and the song seem to work well together.  Meanwhile, “Homer’s Waltz” mirrors so many of his noted marine landscapes with its gentle, reserved melody.  ‘Air Earth Fire Water,’ with its cross of Afro-Cuban instrumentation and American jazz elements does well to illustrate the story of the Orishas, which are – in much African lore – emissaries of God.  According to the lore, the Orishas control the forces of nature and everything that mankind does.  Many paintings of the Orishas have been painted over the years, depicting each being and what its role.  It stands out quite starkly from its fellow arrangements just as much as they do from one another.  All of the arrangements noted here and the rest of the record’s works come together to paint their own vivid picture that when considered along with the record’s approach, makes the album that much more enjoyable for audiences.  It is not the last of the album’s most notable elements.  Its production rounds out its most important elements.

The production that went into Jazz And Art is important to note because of how much is going on within each of the songs.  ‘Air, Earth, Fire, Water’ is just one of the songs that serves to illustrate this aspect.  The multitudinous instrumentation here means that there is quite a bit going on, but those behind the boards managed to capture it all.  The Afro-Cuban drums, the horns and every other instrument gets its own time in the limelight, with no one part overpowering the other at any point in the song.  ‘Blue Twirl,’ which comes almost halfway through the record’s run, is another example of the importance of the album’s production.  There is just as much going on here as in the album’s other entries, but in a completely unexpected fashion.  There are so many dynamic changes, as well as elements and moods throughout.  Again, those behind the glass managed to capture the full essence of that diversity.  The end result is a song that is one of the album’s best works.  Simply put, it is clear in listening through each of the album’s 10 songs that much time and effort was put into balancing each song’s arrangement and related instrumentation for the maximum impact.  The result of that work is a record that,  from start to end, is just as impressive for its production as for its concept and varied arrangements.  All things considered, they make Jazz And Art a work that will certainly appeal just as much to fans of the jazz world as to art lovers.

The Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra’s new album Jazz And Art,  recorded with Wynton Marsalis is a strong new effort from the organization.  That is due in part to its approach.  The album merges the worlds of musical and visual arts for a whole that will serve as an educational tool as well as an entertainment tool.  The varied arrangements do just as much to make the album engaging and entertaining as its very concept.  The record’s production shows a lot of time and effort was put in to make sure the finished production would appeal to every listener.  Each item noted here is important in its own way to the album’s presentation.  All things considered, they make Jazz And Art its own wonderful musical  work of art that will appeal to listeners from the worlds of Jazz and art.  More information on Jazz And Art is available online now along with all of the latest news from the Jazz At Lincoln Center Orchestra at:

 

 

 

Website: http://jazz.org

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/jazzdotorg

 

 

 

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.

Ala.ni Announces Sophomore Album Is Coming; Debuts Videos For Two Of Album’s Songs

Courtesy: Missing Piece Group

Ala.ni announced this week she will release her sophomore album ACCA next year.

In anticipation of the album’s coming release, Ala.ni debuted the videos for two of the album’s singles — ‘Differently‘ and ‘Sha La La‘ — this week.  The songs present a much more pop-oriented sound than the jazz-tinged sounds of her 2017 debut album You & I.

According to information in a news release announcing the coming album, ACCA is largely an a capella presentation with minimal instrumentation in each song.  Rocker Iggy Pop and rapper/actor Lakeith Stanfield make appearances on the album, according to the document.

The full track listing for ACCA is noted below. Pre-orders are open now.

Tracklisting:
1. Differently
2. Le Diplomate (ft. Iggy Pop)
3. Hide
4. Papa
5. Sha La La
6. Bitch
7. All The Things
8. Van P (ft. Lakeith Stanfield)
9. Wales
10. In The Land
11. Away Go

More information on ACCA is available online now along with all of Ala.ni’s latest news and more at:

 

Website: http://alaniofficial.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/alaniofficial

 

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.

Tulip Announces New Live Dates; Debuts ‘Pray For Me’ Video

Independent hard rock act Tulip has a new cover of The Weekend/Kendrick Lamar’s song ‘Pray For Me.’

The band debuted the video for its cover of the song Aug. 11. The video features the band’s members performing their respective portion in four separate windows.  The song’s arrangement displays the up-and-coming Texas-based band’s symphonic metal chops along the way.

Courtesy: O’Donnell Media Group

The band talked about the decision to cover ‘Pray For Me’ in a collective statement.

“‘Pray For Me’ is just a great song, and when we first heard it, we thought it would lend itself well to a bouncy metal remix,” the band said in the statement.  “The lyrics conveniently fit our life story as well.”

The debut of the band’s video for ‘Pray For Me‘ comes almost two months after the band premiered the video for the latest single from its forthcoming self-titled EP, ‘Limited‘ and almost four months after the band debuted the video for the EP’s lead single ‘Total.’

The band’s EP is scheduled for release next month. Its precise release date will be announced soon. The EP’s track listing is noted below.

Courtesy: O’Donnell Media Group

TULIP Tracklist:
1. Total
2. Unconditional
3. Limited
4. Irresistible
5. Perseverance

 

 

 

 

 

Tulip will promote its EP by joining Everygrey for its upcoming North American tour Aug. 23 in Los Angeles, CA.  Tulip’s schedule runs through Sept. 8 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada and features performances in cities, such as Denver, CO; Austin, TX and Seattle, WA.

Evergrey’s upcoming North American dates are in support of its latest album The Atlantic, which was released in January through Afm Records.

More information on Tulip’s upcoming tour dates, its new video and more is available online now at:

 

Website: http://wearetulip.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/wearetulip

 

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.

 

As I Lay Dying Signs New Record Deal; Announces Album Title, Release Date; Debuts New Video

Courtesy: Nuclear Blast Records

Nuclear Blast Records added another band to its artist roster this week.

The company added As I Lay Dying to its roster, according to a news release sent by the company.  The document states the band — in its original lineup — will release its new album Shaped By Fire Sept. 20 through the label.

The album will be available on CD, vinyl and exclusive bundle with T-shirt.  The full details on each platform’s release is noted below.  Pre-orders are open now.

 Shaped By Fire is available in the following formats:

  • CD Digipak
  • Vinyl
    • Beer W/ Black Splatter Vinyl (Limited to 2000)
    • Bone W/ Black Splatter Vinyl (Limited to 500)
    • Red W/ Black Splatter Vinyl (Limited to 250)
    • Orange / Black Swirl Vinyl (Limited to 250)
    • Black Vinyl
    • Clear Vinyl (Limited to 300)
  • T-shirt Bundle (Includes CD digipak & t-shirt available in sizes: S-XXL)

The band released a collective statement about signing to the label.

“We are honored to join forces with Nuclear Blast Records in releasing our new album Shaped By Fire,” the statement read.  “Their legacy and contribution to the heavy music scene in undeniably incredible and we are proud to call their label home.  We are thankful for their support and enthusiasm, and together we look forward to sharing the best AILD record yet!”

The band added, “We are tremendously grateful to have found positive resolve from the worst moments of our history.  The previous chapter of our journey was one of pervasive hurt and pain.  Subsequent years found us on varied paths — all of which led toward resolutions of growth, healing and reconciliation.  As I Lay Dying’s collective purpose is to share a message of hope for everyone through the empowering outlet of music, and we are humbled by the overwhelming support we have received from family, friends and fans so far.”

In anticipation of the album’s release, the band debuted the video for the album’s title track/lead single Friday.  The video crosses footage of the band performing its new single with a man covered in burns crawling on the ground of the set as burning embers fly through the air above him.

The band talked about the video’s treatment and the song’s musical arrangement in a separate statement.

“While lyrically akin to the other Shaped By Fire single releases ‘My Own Grave‘ and ‘Redefined,’ we explored some different musical territory to incorporate within our established sound.  We’d like to thank our director Mathias Arnell, all of the crew and actors that contributed to making this video with us under the very hot conditions.”

The full track listing for Shaped By Fire is noted below.

Shaped By Fire Track Listing:

  1. Burn To Emerge
  2. Blinded
  3. Shaped By Fire
  4. Undertow
  5. Torn Between
  6. Gatekeeper
  7. The Wreckage
  8. My Own Grave
  9. Take What’s Left
  10. Redefined
  11. Only After We’ve Fallen
  12. The Toll It Takes

As I Lay Dying will tour this summer, fall and winter in support of Shaped By Fire.  The band’s tour, which is scheduled to launch Sept. 87 in Sao Paulo, Brazil, features dates overseas and across North America.

The South American and European legs of the tour are scheduled to run through Oct. 19 in Cologne, Germany.  After that leg ends, the band will take some time to rest and recharge before launching the North American leg of the tour Nov. 15 in Las Vegas, NV.  That leg of the tour is scheduled to run through Dec. 15 in Los Angeles, CA.

The band’s full tour schedule is noted below.

Worldwide Dates:
09/07/2019  Sao Paolo, BRA @ Butanta Tropical — TICKETS
09/08/2019  Rio De Janiero, BRA @ Circo Voador — TICKETS
09/10/2019  Buenos Aires, ARG @ El Teatrito — TICKETS
09/12/2019  Santiago, CHI @ Blondie — TICKETS
09/14/2019  Mexico City, MEX @ Plaza Condesa — TICKETS
09/15/2019  Bogota, COL @ Auditorio Lumiere — TICKETS
09/24/2019  St.Petersburg, RU @ Cosmonav — TICKETS
09/25/2019  Moscow, RU @ Glavclub — TICKETS

w/ CHELSEA GRIN, UNEARTH, and FIT FOR A KING:
09/27/2019  Leipzig, DE @ Haus Auensee — TICKETS
09/28/2019  Hamburg, DE @ Sporthalle — TICKETS
09/30/2019  Oslo, NO @ Rockefeller — TICKETS
10/01/2019  Stockholm, SE @ Fryshuset Klubben — TICKETS
10/02/2019  Copenhagen, DK @ Amager Bio — TICKETS
10/03/2019  Berlin, DE @ Columbiahalle — TICKETS
10/04/2019  Prague, CZ @ Forum Karlin — TICKETS
10/05/2019  Munich, DE @ Zenith — TICKETS
10/06/2019  Vienna, AT @ Gasometer — TICKETS
10/07/2019  Budapest, HU @ Barba Negra — TICKETS
10/09/2019  Milan, IT @ Magazzini Generali — TICKETS
10/10/2019  Zurich, CH @ Volkshaus — TICKETS
10/11/2019  Grenoble, FR @ La Belle Electrique — TICKETS
10/12/2019  Barcelona, ES @ Apolo — TICKETS
10/13/2019  Madrid, ES @ La Riviera — TICKETS
10/15/2019  Paris, FR @ Bataclan — TICKETS
10/16/2019  Brussels, BE @ AB — TICKETS
10/17/2019  Tilburg, NL @ 013 — TICKETS
10/18/2019  Saarbrücken, DE @ E-Werk — TICKETS
10/19/2019  Cologne, DE @ Palladium — TICKETS

Confirmed dates for the Shaped By Fire U.S. tour with AFTER THE BURIAL and EMMURE
11/15/2019  Las Vegas, NV @ House of Blues — TICKETS
11/16/2019  Phoenix, AZ @ The Van Buren — TICKETS
11/18/2019  Dallas, TX @ House of Blues — TICKETS
11/19/2019  Houston, TX @ House of Blues — TICKETS
11/21/2019  New Orleans, LA @ House of Blues — TICKETS
11/22/2019  Atlanta, GA @ Buckhead Theatre — TICKETS
11/23/2019  Charlotte, NC @ The Fillmore Charlotte — TICKETS
11/24/2019  Wantagh, NY @ Mulcahy’s Pub and Concert Hall — TICKETS
11/25/2019  Boston, MA @ House of Blues — TICKETS
11/26/2019  Philadelphia, PA @ Theatre of Living Arts — TICKETS
11/27/2019  Pittsburgh, PA @ Roxian Theatre — TICKETS
11/29/2019  Silver Spring, MD @ The Fillmore Silver Spring — TICKETS
11/30/2019  Buffalo, NY @ Town Ballroom — TICKETS
12/01/2019  Reading, PA @ Reverb — TICKETS
12/02/2019  Cleveland, OH @ House of Blues — TICKETS
12/03/2019  Chicago, IL @ House of Blues — TICKETS
12/04/2019  Minneapolis, MN @ Varsity Theater — TICKETS
12/06/2019  Denver, CO @ Summit — TICKETS
12/07/2019  Salt Lake City, UT @ The Complex — TICKETS
12/09/2019  Seattle, WA @ El Corazón — TICKETS
12/10/2019  Portland, OR @ Wonder Ballroom — TICKETS
12/11/2019  Sacramento, CA @ Ace of Spades — TICKETS
12/12/2019  Ventura, CA @ Ventura Theater — TICKETS
12/13/2019  Los Angeles, CA @ The Regent Theater *SOLD OUT*
12/14/2019  San Diego, CA @ SOMA — TICKETS
12/15/2019  Los Angeles, CA @ The Regent Theater — TICKETS

More information on As I Lay Dying’s upcoming live dates, album, videos and more is available online now at:

 

Website: http://www.asilaydying.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/asilaydyingband

 

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.

Am I Dead Yet? Proves The Independent Music Realm Is Alive With Talent

Courtesy: Wire-Sound

The United Kingdom has, for decades, offered the music industry so many great musical acts.  From The Beatles and The Rolling Stones to Motorhead and Judas Priest to David Bowie and Pink Floyd and others, the list of great bands is almost endless.  For all of the great acts that have come from the United Kingdom, it has also produced a variety of noteworthy independent acts throughout the years.  Late this past April Am I Dead Yet? added itself to that list of notable indie UK acts with its debut self-titled album.  The 11-song, 47-minute album is an interesting record whose musical arrangements will appeal to fans of David Bowie, Depeche Mode, Gary Numan and even Pink Floyd while its lyrical content will appeal to an even wider array of listeners.  That is proven early on in the form of the song ‘Meek Shall Inherit The Earth.’  It will be addressed shortly.  ‘People Are Dangerous’ uses its music and lyrics to show just as much as ‘Meek Shall Inherit The Earth’ to help show what makes this record stand out.  It will be addressed a little later.  ‘Futuristic Paranoia,’ which immediately follows ‘People Are Dangerous,’ is yet another example of what makes Am I Dead Yet? stand out as one of this year’s most notable indie music acts.  When it is considered along with the likes of ‘Loneliness,’ ‘Thanks For Sharing’ and ‘Leaving Me Behind,’ – three more of the album’s featured songs – the album becomes that much more impressive.  When all of these songs are considered with the five remaining songs not noted here, the whole of Am I Dead Yet? becomes a record that reminds people the independent music world is just as alive (bad pun fully intended) as the mainstream realm with great acts.

Am I Dead Yet?’s debut self-titled album is one of the most surprising albums of 2019.  It is a record that proves, over the course of its 47-minute run time, that the independent music realm is just as alive with talent as the mainstream realm.  That is proven in part early on in the album’s run in the form of ‘Meek Shall Inherit The Earth.’  The song’s musical arrangement is one part of what makes it such an interesting offering.  The use of the keyboards, the gong, guitars and general production generates a sound and feeling in the arrangement that conjures thoughts of some of David Bowie’s best works.  One could even argue a comparison to some of Depeche Mode’s best works, too.  That is not a bad thing, either.  It is an amalgam that translates quite well even with its melancholic feeling.  That melancholic feeling is important to note because it is in such stark contrast to the song’s lyrical content, which seems actually quite uplifting.

The song’s lead verse reads, “Britain’s got talent/You bet the f*** it has/But it’s not on a game show/On the pages of a sad celebrity mag/Laugh now/For one day, we’ll be in control, oh yeah/It’s coming up from the sewers and the cracks in the walls/Lost souls/Tired of it all/weirdos…queers in padded cells/We salute you/The anti-heroes/Dream out loud/For all that you’re worth/The meek shall inherit the Earth, my friend/The meek shall inherit the Earth.”  The song continues in its second verse, which reads, “If they say they want it enough/Will they deserve it?/Not in a million years/Fame ain’t easy…not even if you cry me a river of tears/Laugh  now, for one day/We’ll be in control, oh yeah/And we won’t have even earned it from the school/Where they teach you to rock and roll.”  This is a full-on message of hope and empowerment.  It is using a timeless adage to remind listeners that hope is possible.  It empowers those people who have felt themselves the dregs of society, but who are in fact the underdogs who so deservedly will one day in fact inherit the earth.  That positive message, set against the melancholic vibe to make that lyrical message that much more impacting.  The arrangement’s sound and feel will connect with listeners because it touches on the feelings and emotions of said listeners.  The positive message reminds listeners that something good is out there. The whole of that pairing makes this song one of the most notable songs featured in this record.  Of course it is just one of the album’s most notable works.  ‘People Are Dangerous’ is just as notable as ‘Meek Shall Inherit The Earth.’

‘People Are Dangerous’ in part because of its musical arrangement, which is centered around its infectious bluesy guitar riff and percussion.  The noted guitar riff almost immediately conjures thoughts of Depeche Mode and Pink Floyd.  The use of the Latin percussion and tympani adds even more to that feeling.  The chorus advances that sound even more, with the end result being an arrangement that is yet another powerful example of what makes AIDY? such a surprisingly enjoyable album.  The song’s musical side is just one part of what makes it stand out.  Its lyrical side is just as impacting as its musical side.  The song’s lead verse reads, “We’re all wounded creatures with stories to tell/Under the influence/Under the spell/Walkin’ the line between serenity and sorrow/We self medicate for a better tomorrow/Out in the cold try to weather the storm/Stokin’ the fire to keep us all warm/People are dangerous/They’ll promise you the Earth/They’ll wound you with their words/And hit where it hurts/They’ll spin you around/And lift you up high/And bring you to the ground/In the blink of an eye.”  The song’s second verse reads, “Now here are we?/Still chasin’ our dreams/Living a nightmare…Holdin’ on tight/We’ve hit rock bottom/It comes through fear/Of being forgotten/Dictating direction by building more walls/If we stand together/We can watch them all fall/People are dangerous/They’ll promise you the Earth/they’ll wound you with their words/They’ll hit where it hurts/They’ll spin you around/Lift you up high/And bring you to the ground/In the blink of an eye/Stop pretending everything’s alright/Have you the heart for the fight?/Better to die on your own two feet/Than to live life on your knees.”  In reading this, it becomes clear that this song’s lyrical content is a social commentary.  It is a commentary about what has happened to society and what we as a people are doing to ourselves and to one another.  This wording is an original take on a familiar trope that will certainly keep listeners engaged in its own right.  Add that to the maintained engagement and entertainment that the song’s musical arrangement, and the end result is a song that is instantly one of this record’s most memorable works.  It is not the last of the album’s most memorable and notable songs, either.  ‘Futuristic Paranoia’ is yet another of the record’s truly memorable and notable works.

‘Futuristic Paranoia’ conjures thoughts of Gary Numan’s most recent albums right from its outset in terms of its arrangement.  That is due to the use of its electronics and its Middle Eastern elements.  The vocals and the rest of the arrangement’s elements add to that comparison even more.  What is important to note here is that while the comparison to Gary Numan’s work can be made here, it cannot be said that this arrangement is a blatant rip-off of his work.  The two are just stylistically similar, is all, and that is a very good thing here.  While the song’s musical arrangement clearly does a lot to make it engaging and entertaining, it is only one part of the song.  The song’s lyrical content is just as important to its whole as its musical material.

The lead verse in this song states, “When you think you’re alone, remember they’ll be watching you/Wherever you are, night or day/When the nightmare comes and you are shaking in the dead of night/Nothing makes it go away/It’s just your average, ordinary futuristic paranoia.”  The second verse follows, “When the voices in your head get fearless and come out to play…deep down they speak the truth/When the strange bacterial shapes and the screen begin their merry dance/Your world goes pixilated/It’s not use/It’s just your average ordinary futuristic paranoia.”  This one is deep, needless to say.  It’s as if the group is saying that so much of what we think is in our heads and we have to remind ourselves of this.  Yet again, that is just this critic’s own take on this.  It could be totally wrong.  Hopefully even if it is wrong, it is somewhere in the proverbial ballpark.  That aside, the fact that this deep content will certainly generate a lot of interest and conversation among listeners proves why this song stands out.  The addition of that noted musical content to the lyrics makes the song stand out even more.  All things considered, they make ‘Futuristic Paranoia’ a work that is certain to be a fan favorite both on record and live.  Keeping this in mind, when this song is considered alongside the other songs noted here – both of which will be fan favorites in their own right – they show collectively what makes Am I Dead Yet? a pleasant surprise for every music lover.  When those songs are set alongside the likes of ‘Loneliness,’ ‘Thanks For Sharing’ and ‘Leaving Me Behind,’ – three more of the album’s featured songs – the album becomes that much more impressive.  When that group is considered along with the rest of the songs not directly addressed here, the whole of the record becomes a presentation that proves proudly that the independent music industry – even overseas – is just as alive with talent as America’s independent music realm.

Am I Dead Yet?’s debut self-titled full-length studio recording is a surprisingly entertaining first effort from the UK-based group.  Its musical arrangements take the best elements of so many of the group’s more well-known mainstream counterparts for a whole that is entirely original.  Sure, the comparisons are there, but none of the arrangements just rip-off the songs from the already noted counterparts.  The record’s lyrical content is just as surprisingly engaging and entertaining as its musical content.  All things considered, they make Am I Dead Yet? one of the most surprisingly enjoyable records of 2019, and more proof that the independent music industry in whole is alive and well with plenty of talent.  More information on Am I Dead Yet? is available online now along with all of Am I Dead Yet?’s latest news and more at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.amideadyet.co.uk

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

 

 

 

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.