Five Iron Frenzy’s New LP Is A Presentation That Audiences Will Agree Is A Welcome Return

Courtesy: Earshot Media

Fans of the veteran ska-rock band got a big surprise this week when the band released its new album Until This Shakes Apart.  Released Friday with no prior announcement, the 13-song record is the band’s first new album in more than seven years.  It is a record that the band’s established fan base will find a welcome return from the group.  That is proven in part through its musical arrangements, which will be discussed shortly.  The lyrical content that accompanies the album’s musical content adds its own share of appeal to the record.  It will be discussed a little later.  The sequencing of the noted content puts the finishing touch to the record’s presentation, bringing everything together.  It will also be discussed later.  Each item noted here is key in its own way to the whole of the album.  All things considered, they make the album in whole a presentation that Five Iron Frenzy’s established fan base will enjoy just as much as any ska fan in general.

Seven years is a long time for a musical act of any genre to go without releasing any new music.  On one hand, it leaves the noted act(s) with the concern of relevance.  On another level, it leaves audiences wondering if said act(s) have any rust so to speak.  Five Iron Frenzy has addressed both of those concerns in its new album Until This Shakes Apart.  The 43-minute record assures listeners that not only is the band still relevant, but has not lost any of its shine either.  That is proven in part through the album’s featured musical arrangements.  The arrangements in question offer longtime audiences plenty to appreciate in the continued balance of its familiar ska leanings and its more punk-influenced work. ‘In Through The Out Door,’ the album’s opener gives the album a strong start.  At the same time, it gives listeners that noted sense of familiarity with its expertly balanced ska and punk elements. ‘One Heart Hypnosis,’ which comes later in the album’s run, is another way in which the record’s expertly balanced ska and rock leanings presented.  Again, the familiar ska elements are there, but they are presented more subtly against the more indie-pop sensibility of the song’s primary instrumentation this time out.  The contrast in the two stylistic approaches here makes the song in whole another standout addition to the album.  ‘Like Something I Missed,’ by comparison’ gives equal time to the band’s punk and ska leanings, making for an arrangement that while unique in its own right in the album’s bigger picture, a composition whose stylistic approach is still familiar for audiences.  In other words, it is familiar in its stylistic approach, but still boasts a unique sound that doesn’t just re-hash that of the album’s other songs or even the band’s other works.  Between this song, the others noted here and the rest of the album’s entries, the record’s musical arrangements in whole reason enough for audiences to hear this album.  The record’s musical content is just the proverbial tip of the iceberg that is Until This Shakes Apart.  The lyrical content that accompanies the album’s musical content gives listeners even more reason to take in the record.

The lyrical content that is featured in Until This Shakes Apart is important to examine in the album’s overall picture because it is just as familiar to listeners as the album’s musical content.  By and large, the record’s lyrical content presents some very socio-politically charged statements.  The band takes on the powers that be right from the album’s outset in ‘In Through The Out Door.’  Going without a lyrics sheet to reference, much of the song’s content is difficult to decipher.  However, the understandable mentions of civil disobedience and “your little gospel spewing hate” in the song’s chorus is clear enough that it does not take a genius to know that the band is addressing the current state of the nation (if not world).  It is a topic that will always be relevant. 

‘Bullfight for an Empty Ring’ also features the band’s familiar socio-politically charged lyrical content.  The mention here in the song’s lead verse that “You can’t see the sun/’Cause oil pays the bankroll” is just one example of that strongly worded commentary.  The mention of the ties between partisan politics and stock market shifts in the song’s second verse adds to that overall statement, and will resonate just as much with listeners.  It echoes hints of the band’s existing commentaries, making for even more appeal in terms of the album’s lyrical content. 

‘Tyrannis,’ which comes a little ways through the album’s run, is another key example of the band’s familiar socio-political commentary.  This time the band seemingly takes on the hot button issue of the statues memorializing Confederate leaders that have been taken down nationwide.  The song makes mention of the “stars and bars” and the KKK alongside mentions of memorializing certain people.  That leaves one to make an educated assumption that the song does indeed center on that topic or something closely related to the matter.  Considering this along with the content in the other examined songs and the rest of the album’s entries – some of which do also border on the topic of relationships – the overall lyrical presentation in this album proves to be just as strong as the album’s musical presentation.  The sequencing of that collective content and brings everything together and makes the album’s presentation in whole even more convincing in its appeal.

The sequencing of Until This Shakes Apart ensures the lyrical content featured in this record does not get too monotonous, even with the overarching theme of socio-political commentary.  At the same time, the energies in the album’s musical arrangements steady ad balanced throughout.  ‘In Through The Out Door’ opens the album on a strong, up-tempo note.  The energy continues on until the album reaches ‘Bullfight for an Empty Ring.’  What’s interesting is that while the energy pulls back, it is only because the stylistic approach is different.  The overall energy is still positive, just more laid back.  That pull back carries on through ‘Renegades.’  Tyrannis’ picks things back up.  From there, the changes in the styles and energies is so subtle from one song to the next.  That subtlety is just enough to keep listeners engaged, too, right to the album’s end.  The stability and balance in the album’s energies and lyrical themes gives the record a positive aesthetic element that audiences will enjoy just as much as the content itself.  Keeping all of that in mind, the album overall proves itself a presentation that ska fans and Five Iron Frenzy’s fans alike will find worth hearing. 

Five Iron Frenzy’s new full-length studio recording Until This Shakes Apart is a positive new presentation that ska fans will enjoy just as much as the band’s established fan base.  Each group will equally find the album a welcome return from the band.  That is due in part to the album’s featured musical arrangements.  The arrangements themselves feature some familiar stylistic approaches and sounds from the band.  The lyrical content that accompanies the record’s musical content adds its own appeal to the presentation.  That is because it is as familiar as the album’s musical content.  The sequencing of that collective content brings everything together, putting the finishing touch to the album’s presentation.  Each item examined here is important in its own way to the whole of the album.  All things considered, they make the record a work that will appeal equally to the band’s fans and ska fans alike.  The album is available now.  More information on the record is available along with all of Five Iron Frenzy’s latest news at:

Websitehttp://www.fiveironfreny.com

Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/5ironFrenzy

Twitterhttp://twitter.com/fiveironfrenzy

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.

Demon Hunter Debuts Acoustic ‘I Will Fail You’ Take

Courtesy: Solid State Records

Demon Hunter kicked off the weekend with some “new” music.

The band debuted a stripped down, acoustic take of its song ‘I Will Fail You‘ Friday. The song is featured in the band’s forthcoming compilation record Songs of Death and Resurrection, which is scheduled for release March 5 through Solid State Records.

The song’s debut comes less than two months after the band held a livestream acoustic performance to promote the new compilation of stripped down takes of its music.

Front man Ryan Clark talked about the stripped down take of ‘I Will Fail You’ during a recent interview.

“The original album version of “I Will Fail You” is one of our doomiest ballads,” he said. “At the time, I found myself immersed in the bleak heaviness of bands like Omnium Gatherum, Swallow The Sun, and Katatonia. I’m naturally drawn to that place where heavy and sad collide.

Reimagined for Songs of Death and Resurrection, the song takes on a haunting vibe, replacing heavy chugs with hypnotic repetition of the lead guitar,” added Clark. There’s a trance-like cadence to it, which feels just as appropriate as the original crunch.”

This version of the song also features the amazing talents of longtime Demon Hunter collaborator, Chris Carmichael,” he continued. “Chris has arranged and performed the strings for many DH songs, such as “Sixteen,” “Driving Nails,” “I Am a Stone,” and “Slight the Odds.” I’ve never had to give Chris direction, and I’ve never asked him to change anything beyond his first attempt. He just gets it… and makes us sound like a million dollars every time he touches a track. 

The album’s track listing is noted below.

Tracklist:
1. My Throat is an Open Grave (Resurrected)
2. Dead Flowers (Resurrected)
3. The Heart of a Graveyard (Resurrected)
4. Praise the Void (Resurrected)
5. Blood in the Tears (Resurrected)
6. Loneliness (Resurrected)
7. I Will Fail You (Resurrected)
8. I Am a Stone (Resurrected)
9. Deteriorate (Resurrected)
10. Carry Me Down (Resurrected)
11. The Tide Began to Rise (Resurrected)
12. My Heartstrings Come Undone (Resurrected)

More information on Demon Hunter’s forthcoming compilation and livestream is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:

Websitehttp://www.demonhunter.net

Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/demonhunter

Twitterhttp://twitter.com/demonhunterband

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.

Audiences Of All Ages Will Enjoy Tim Bredrup’s Second Round Of Tunes With Tim

Courtesy: Waldmania PR

Family music entertainer Tim Bredrup (a.k.a. Tunes with Tim) released his second album today.  The independently released, 11-song record –We’re All Human — is a presentation that pre-schoolers and their parents will equally enjoy.  That is due in part to its diverse musical content, which will be discussed shortly.  The lyrical content that accompanies the record’s musical content adds its own touch to the album’s presentation and will be discussed a little later.  The sequencing of the collective content puts the finishing touch to the album’s presentation, bringing everything full circle.  It will be discussed later, too.  Each item noted here is important in its own way to the whole of the album.  All things considered, they make We’re All Human an easy, early candidate for a spot on any critic’s list of the year’s top new family music albums.

Tim Bredrup’s sophomore album We’re All Human is a strong new offering from the up-and-coming family music entertainer.  It is a presentation that will appeal just as much to pre-school audiences as to their parents.  That is due in no small part to the album’s featured musical arrangements.  As already noted, the record’s featured musical arrangements are quite diverse.  From rock, to hip-hop, to reggae, and beyond, the diversity in the record’s musical arrangements will ensure audiences’ engagement and entertainment in itself.  ‘Rub-A-Dub We’re in the Tub’ for instance presents listeners a musical arrangement that will take adults back to the beach music sounds of the 1960s.  ‘Sweet Dreams to You,’ which closes out the album, is a light, acoustic work whose light bells, vocals and guitar present such a relaxing lullaby style composition.  ‘PBJ’ gives listeners the noted hip-hop infusion.  It conjures thoughts of works from Bredrup’s family music contemporary Agent 23 Skidoo in its stylistic approach or maybe even the Alphabet Rockers.  The album’s title track, by comparison, is such a moving composition with its ever so slight cymbal roll accents and equally light vocals and guitar.  It honestly lends itself –at least to this critic – to comparisons to works from John Lennon.  On yet another note, ‘Ziggy Zaggy Zoo’ lends itself immediately to works from one of the most well-known names in the world of family music, Raffi.  ‘The Manners Song’ presents the aforementioned reggae influence.  Between everything mentioned here and the rest of the record’s arrangements, audiences of all ages get plenty to appreciate at least musically.

The vast spread of musical content featured in Tunes with Tim’s new album We’re All Human is just one aspect that makes it successful.  The lyrical themes that accompany the record’s musical content gives listeners of all ages its own share of entertainment and engagement.  ‘When The Baby’s Sleeping’ is one of the most notable works in regards to the album’s lyrical content.  It is a song about the different situations in a household when an infant is sleeping and awake.  Bredrup’s lyrical (and musical) presentation here will put a smile on any parent’s face.  That is because every parent will relate to the different energies and how people in a household have to act when an infant is asleep versus awake.  The album’s title track, by comparison is its own work that promotes unity over division among the world’s peoples.  The aforementioned ‘Manners Song’ is exactly as its title notes.  It is a song that promotes proper manners, which is always important for any child (and even some adults) to learn.  ‘The Train Song’ is exactly what its title insinuates, too.  It is a song about riding a train.  It is set to the melodies of ‘Old McDonald’ and ‘B-I-N-G-O.’  So that will add to the song’s appeal even more.  Once more here, audiences get another example of the overall diversity in the album’s lyrical content.  Bredrup clearly never sticks to just one topic, instead giving audiences plenty to appreciate lyrically just as with the album’s musical content.  Keeping all of the record’s collective content in mind, it does much to keep this album appealing.  The sequencing of that content brings everything together.

The sequencing of We’re All Human is important because it is what ensures the album maintains its engagement and entertainment throughout.  It succeeds at that goal, too.  As noted, the album’s lyrical content is just as diverse as its musical counterpart.  The sequencing is partially to thank for that.  Bredrup continuously changes up the album’s lyrical themes so as to make sure listeners get something original throughout in that aspect.  Examining the album’s musical arrangements, their energies and styles changes up just as constantly as the album’s lyrical content.  ‘Let’s Get Ready To Go,’ the album’s opener, starts the album off on a relaxed note before making things very interesting with the up and down energy of ‘When The Baby’s Sleeping.’  The variety in that song’s energy, which matches so well with the song’s lyrical content, then gives way to the more mid-tempo vibe of ‘Ziggy Zaggy Zoo.’  The Ben Folds-esque ‘The Sneeze Song (Ah-Choo) keeps that mid-tempo energy running as the album progresses.  ‘PBJ’ changes the album’s mood, turning things in a hip-hop direction, but still keeping the album’s energy even with the distinct stylistic change.  Even as laid back  as the song is, it still works so well to keep listeners engaged and entertained.  The album’s energy gradually pulls back to its slowest and  most reserved point in ‘We’re All Human’ before things pick back up in ‘The Train Song.’  The classic rock-infused ‘Do The Wigglebutt’ picks the energy up even more with its driving guitar line.  From there, the album’s energy pulls back and becomes even more relaxed in the record’s penultimate song ‘Rub-a-Dub We’re in the Tub’ before ultimately setting audiences down gently with the album’s lullaby closer ‘Sweet Dreams to You.’  That finale, after so much up and down, is sure to help young listeners get down for a nap or even for the night.  Simply put, the constant change in the album’s lyrical themes through its sequencing, and the balance in the energies in the album’s arrangements shows that much time and thought was put into the album’s sequencing.  That time and thought paid off, as it perfectly brings everything together.  To that end, the content featured in We’re All Human and its sequencing makes the album a successful offering that will appeal to pre-schoolers just as much as their parents.

Tunes with Tim’s (a.k.a. Tim Bredrup) sophomore album We’re All Human is a strong return for the up-and-coming family music entertainer.  It is a presentation that will appeal to a wide range of listeners.  That is due in no small part to the diversity in the record’s featured musical arrangements.  The lyrical content that accompanies the record’s musical content is diverse in its own right.  The sequencing of the noted content brings everything full circles and completes the album’s presentation, ensuring even more, listeners’ engagement and entertainment.  Each item noted here is important in its own way to the whole of the album.  All things considered, they make We’re All Human an easy, early candidate for any critic’s list of the year’s top new family music albums.  It is available now.  More information on We’re All Human is available along with all of Tim Bredrup’s latest news at:

Websitehttp://tuneswithtim.com

Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/TunesWithTim

Twitterhttp://twitter.com/TunesWithTim

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.  

Genevieve Goings Debuts New Single, ‘Shadow Puppets,’ Companion Video

8 Pound Gorilla Records

Family music entertainer Genevieve Goings debuted her latest single and its video this week.

Goings debuted her new single, ‘Shadow Puppets‘ and its video Friday. The song and its video are the second from Goings’ forthcoming album Great Indoors, which is slated for release Feb. 5. The song’s debut follows that of the album’s lead single ‘Grateful.’

The video for ‘Shadow Puppets’ features Goings in a studio, reading a children’s book. As a producer behind the glass sends her to break, shadows start dancing on a screen next to her as she performs her new single.

The musical arrangement featured in Goings’ new song is a bit of a reggae style composition mixed with some catchy, upbeat club influence. It will entertain and engage audiences of any age.

The lyrical content that accompanies the song’s musical content is understood easily. It is just about the fun of creating shadow puppets together as a family.

More information on Goings’ new single, video and album is available along with all of her latest news at:

Website: https://artistecard.com/genevievegoings

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/genevieve.goings

Twitter: http://twitter.com/ChooChooGirl

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.

Saxon Debuts Video For ‘Speed King’ Cover

Courtesy: Silver Linings Music

Saxon is taking on a Deep Purple classic for its latest single.

The band debuted its cover of Deep Purple’s song ‘Speed King‘ and its companion video Friday. The song is the second single from Saxon’s forthcoming covers compilation record Inspiration, which is scheduled for release March 19 through Silver Linings Music. It follows the premiere of the record’s lead single, a cover of The Rolling Stones’ ‘Painted Black.’

Saxon’s take on ‘Speed King’ is slightly different from its source material. The frenetic guitar solo that opens the original is absent in Saxon’s cover. The band instead opts to jump right into the song’s primary section. It should also be noted that the more laid back bridge in the original song is nixed in Saxon’s update, too. Saxon’s take opts instead to keep the energy high throughout.

The video for Saxon’s cover of ‘Speed King’ is just as energetic as the band’s cover, presenting various clips of rally cars racing on different backroads courses.

Front man Biff Byford, who released his own solo record School of Hard Knocks last year, talked about the band’s cover of ‘Speed King.’

“Without ‘Speed King’ there would be no ‘Motorcycle Man,’ he said. “I love the attitude, energy, an driving speed of this song, not to mention those screaming vocals! I’d never sung it before, and I had great fun with it!”

The track listing for Inspirations is noted below.  Pre-orders are open.

Track Listing:

  1. Paint It Black
  2. Immigrant Song
  3. Paperback Writer
  4. Evil Woman
  5. Stone Free
  6. Bomber
  7. Speed King
  8. The Rocker
  9. Hold The Line
  10. Problem Child
  11. See My Friends

 More information on Inspirations is available online now along with all of the band’s latest news and more at:

Websitehttp://www.saxon747.com

Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/saxon

Twitterhttp://twitter.com/SaxonOfficial

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.

The Nomadic Debuts New Single, ‘Jeannie’

Alt-rock act The Nomadic debuted its new single this week.

The act, founded by Robert Gaylard, debuted the single ‘Jeannie‘ Friday. The song is the act’s sixth single, following the release of the songs ‘Walk The Streets,’ ‘Manhattan View,’ ‘Drifting,’ ‘Waiting,’ and ‘Beyond Blue.’

The three-minute, 37-second composition presents a light arrangement whose guitars, vocals and piano conjure thoughts of compositions that Beatles legend Paul McCartney has crafted during the course of his solo career. The lyrical content featured with the song’s musical arrangement comes from a personal story from Gaylard’s family.

Garylard discussed the story in question in a prepared statement.

“Jeannie was my grandmother, she was the youngest daughter in her family in Wagga Wagga, country Australia, growing up in the early 20th century!,” he said. “Australia was a very different country then, still growing and developing, and finding its feet as a nation. Conditions were not easy and everyone in the family had to contribute to the family. Jeannie was a very strong and stoic woman who served in the Medical Women’s Service in the Pacific during the Second World War. For 4 years she was apart from her fiancé Guy, who during that time was a POW. So she had no idea as to his whereabouts and how he was doing. I think a lot about their strength and example today, and how resilient and strong they were.”

“She was a wonderful nurse, and a loving and caring grandmother, a friend who supported the community and family through good times and bad,” he added. “She was always there with a kind and wise word, and sometimes an extraordinary sense of the future. She taught us to appreciate the beauty in nature, a starry sky or a robin in the garden and was always encouraging and inspiring. She loved music and was a fan of Elvis, Pavarotti, The Beatles and The Nomadic!!”

More information on The Nomadic’s new single and upcoming music is available online along with all of the group’s latest news at:

Websitehttp://thenomadic.band

Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/TheNomadicBand

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.

Rough Dreams Debuts ‘Termites Hollow’ Cover From New EP, ‘From The Graves Of Better Days’

Courtesy: 95X Records

Independent emo-core band Rough Dreams debuted the second single from its forthcoming EP this week.

The band debuted its cover of Grade’s song ‘Termites Hollow‘ Thursday. The song is the second single from the band’s forthcoming covers EP From the Graves of Better Days, which is scheduled for release Feb. 5 through 95X Records. The debut of the band’s cover of ‘Termites Hollow’ follows that of the band’s cover of Thrice’s ‘The Artist in the Ambulance‘ last month.

Front man Jake Jones discussed the inclusion of ‘Termites Hollow’ to its new EP in a recent interview.

“When we were picking songs to cover for our covers EP, I knew that there needed to be at least one seemingly obscure song on the record,” he said. “I pitched “Termites Hollow” by Grade to the band because they are one of my biggest inspirations when it comes to songwriting. The guys weren’t familiar with the band, but I played them the track, and everyone agreed that it’s a killer song and needed a new life in new times.”

“It was probably one of the most fun tracks to record especially after [guitarist] Chris [Suggs] suggested throwing in the acoustic guitar in the bridge,” added Jones. “However, the vocals on this song were quite taxing and both Chris and I completely blew out our voices while tracking.”

From the Graves of Betrer Days is just one of the records that Rough Dreams has planned for release this year. The band also has plans to release a new album this year. more information on that record is available along with all of Rough Dreams’ latest news at:

Websitehttp://www.roughdreams.bandcamp.com

Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/roughdreams

Twitterhttp://twitter.com/roughdreamsband

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.

Accept Addresses Humans’ Tech Addiction In New Single, Video

Courtesy: Nuclear Blast Records

Veteran metal band Accept debuted the latest single from its new album this week.

The band kicked off the weekend by debuting its new single, ‘Zombie Apocalypse‘ and its companion video Friday. The song is the third single from the band’s album Too Mean To Die. Its debut follows that of the album’s singles ‘Too Mean To Die‘ and ‘The Undertaker.’

While the song’s title presents a scary title, the imagery used in the song’s video tells a horror story of a different sort. It tells a story of how the internet has turned humans into one giant race of zombies. It is used to illustrate that very message presented in the song’s lyrical content, which front man Mark Tornillo explained in a prepared statement.

“They’re everywhere, they can’t put them (mobile phones) down,” he said. “They can’t keep them charged; they can’t take their eyes off the screen! It’s a zombie apocalypse!” 

The musical arrangement that accompanies the song’s lyrical content is everything that audiences have come to expect from Accept. Its driving guitars and solid time keeping work with Tornillo’s vocals and the bass line to make the song in whole a fully engaging and entertaining power metal work very much in the vein of Judas Priest and other contemporaries of Accept.

Too Mean To Die is scheduled for release Jan. 29 through Nuclear Blast Records. More information on Accept’s new single, video, and album is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:

Websitehttp://acceptworldwide.com

Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/accepttheband

Twitterhttp://twitter.com/accepttheband

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 http://philspics.wodpress.com.

CMG’s Latest ‘Sudden Fear’ Re-Issue Succeeds Just As Much As The Movie’s BD Re-Issue

Courtesy: Cohen Media Group

Cohen Media Group this week, re-issued Joseph Kaufman Productions’ 1951 noir thriller Sudden Fear on on DVD. It marks the second time in less than four years that the independent studio has re-issued the movie, having re-issued it on Blu-ray in December 2016. The movie, an adaptation of author Edna Sherry’s book by the same name, is a surprisingly enjoyable cinematic work just as much here in its latest re-issue as its previous Blu-ray re-issue.  That is due in part to its story.  This will be discussed shortly.  The work of the movie’s main stars—Joan Crawford, Jack Palance and Gloria Grahame—is just as important to note as the movie’s story to the overall presentation of the movie’s upcoming re-issue.  The bonus commentary included with the movie’s upcoming re-issue rounds out its most important elements.  Each element is important in its own way to the presentation of the movie’s upcoming re-issue.  All things considered, Cohen Media Group’s re-issue of Sudden Fear proves to be one of 2016’s top new re-issues.

Cohen Media Group’s upcoming re-issue of Joseph Kaufman Productions’ 1952 hit noir thriller Sudden Fear is one of this year’s top new DVD/BD re-issues.  This is proven in part through the movie’s story.  Sudden Fear’s story was adapted from a page turner by the same name written by author Edna Sherry.  It follows lead character Myra Hudson (Crawford) as she meets and falls in love with actor Lester Blaine (Palance).  As the story progresses, Myra marries Lester Blaine, but finds out later he hadn’t married her for love at all, but rather for money.  As she discovers by chance, he is plotting with another woman to murder her and take her money.  There’s a certain irony to the plot that audiences will appreciate in hindsight.  As it turns out because of his greed and short sightedness, he didn’t even know he could have had even more money.  It serves to show the old adage that crime never pays is very true, and is a great addition to the story, especially in its subtlety.  What’s even more interesting in dissecting the story is that being made in 1952, the story seemed pretty much run-of-the-mill back then.  But now in the 21st century, one need just watch an episode of 48 HoursDateline or 20/20 to see just how realistic such a story can be and is.  Add in relatively stable pacing over the course of the story’s near two-hour run time (the movie runs 110 minutes, just shy of the two-hour mark) and audiences get a story that forms a solid foundation for the movie’s presentation and that of its upcoming re-issue.  It is just one part of what makes the movie’s upcoming re-issue so enjoyable.  The work of the movie’s cast is just as important to note here as the movie’s story.

The story at Sudden Fear’s base is a hugely important part of the movie’s presentation.  On one level, it does make some changes from author Edna Sherry’s original novel on which it is based.  But it still strives to stay at least somewhat true to its source material.  On another level, it is a simple story that audiences will have no trouble following, yet is still so gripping.  On its last level, its pacing makes its 110-minute run time pass by with relative ease, even in its somewhat slower moments. Keeping that in mind, the movie’s story, again, forms a solid foundation for its presentation.  While it is clearly an important piece of the movie’s presentation, it is just one of the movie’s key elements.  The work of the movie’s cast is just as important to note here as that of its writers—Lenore J. Coffee, Robert Smith and Joan Crawford herself (this will be discussed later).  Crawford, as audiences will learn through the bonus commentary included in the movie’s upcoming re-issue, was hardly a rookie actor when she took on the role of Myra Hudson in this movie.  In fact, Turner Classic Movies writer and author Jeremy Arnold reveals that Crawford had starred in more than 70 (yes, 70 plus movies) at the time that she starred in Sudden Fear.  Her years of experience showed clearly in her performance here as she progressed from strong, confident, self-assured playwright to standard female romantic lead back to that strong, confident, self-assured figure in the end.  There were so many moments throughout where Crawford easily could have chewed some scenery such as when Myra first discovers by chance that Lester had only married her for her money or in the story’s final chase scene.  But she didn’t allow herself to do that, instead exhibiting clearly those years of experience.  That control made her acting so enjoyable to take in.  Her talent will make audiences across the board cheer her on as she defies Lester and makes her own plan to stop him.  Hers is just one example of what makes the cast’s wok so notable in this movie.  Palance is just as impressive in his portrayal of the evil, scheming Lester.

Joan Crawford’s portrayal of Myra in this movie is spot on from beginning to end.  Audiences will find themselves riveted by her performance as she journeys from a strong, confident woman to the standard female lead back to her strong, confident self.  Crawford’s years of experience help her shine throughout her performance here, as she remains the consummate professional even in scenes where it would have been so easy for her to ham it up and really chew the scenery so to speak.  This professionalism makes her portrayal of Myra completely believable.  Hers isn’t the only work that should be noted here.  Co-star Jack Palance’s work as Lester Blaine is just as notable.  Palance is likely known to most audiences as the hardened cowboy Curly from City Slickers (1991).  So his portrayal as the greedy Lester Blaine here is a surprising and entertaining change of pace.  He makes audiences love to hate Lester as Lester and Irene plot to kill Myra.  That’s not just because of his plotting but because of the personality that he gives Lester in his portrayal.  Audiences will note that as confident as Lester proves to be, he is also quite lacking in confidence and somewhat maniacal.  That is exhibited in the story’s final act as Lester and Irene’s plan (or technically Myra’s plan, not to give away too much) begins to unravel.  Lester’s reaction (including his emoting) as he chases Myra is the clearest example of that lack of confidence and maniacal nature.  Audiences will be enthralled as they watch Lester so determinedly chase her, to the point that he makes one fatal mistake (which won’t be given away here), leading up to the story’s finale.  Between his work on camera and that of Crawford, the pair shows with full clarity the importance of the cast’s work to the movie’s presentation.  The moments displayed here are just some of the moments in which their work shines.  Audiences will find plenty of other moments in which their work proves so important to the movie’s presentation when they purchase or order the movie’s re-issue for themselves.  Even when all of those moments are combined with the work of the movie’s writing team, they show themselves to be only two of the movie’s key elements.  The bonus commentary that is included in the movie’s upcoming re-issue rounds out the movie’s most important elements.

The work of Sudden Fear’s writers and cast members are both important in their own way to the movie’s presentation.  The writers’ work is so important because of the way in which they adapted author Edna Sherry’s novel for the big screen.  It changes some of the material in Sherry’s story, but still ends up presenting a gripping story that will keep viewers on the edge of their collective seats.  Lead stars Joan Crawford and Jack Palance are impressive, too as the movie’s leads.  Their cast mates as entertaining in their own right, too.  While the work of the movie’s cast and writers proves to be in key to the movie’s presentation in the end, they are only a couple of the elements that make the movie such a surprisingly entertaining work.  The bonus commentary that is included in the movie’s upcoming re-issue rounds out its most important elements.  Turner Classic Movies writer and author Jeremy Arnold provides the commentary for the movie in its upcoming re-issue.  It isn’t the first time that he has provided commentary for one of CMG’s classics re-issues.  He also provided commentary for the recent re-issues of Lured and A Scandal in Paris by CMG.  He offers plenty of important information in his commentary here, just as in the company’s previous re-issues.  Some of that important information includes the revelation that the idea to adapt Sherry’s novel to the big screen originally came from Crawford.  The problem with adapting it was that it couldn’t be done until Crawford could get out of her contract with Warner Brothers.  Arnold also reveals through his commentary the decision on the movie’s director even came from Crawford and that Sherry’s novel actually took place entirely in New York.  He explains Sherry’s story never involved San Francisco, a train ride or certain other elements incorporated into the story’s big screen adaptation.  He even gives viewers a little bit of a history lesson on Crawford’s early career in his commentary, revealing Crawford’s birth name and how she gained her screen name of Crawford.  That story in itself will give viewers a little bit of a laugh.  Between these revelations and so many others, Arnold provides viewers with lots of invaluable information throughout the movie.  That mass of material is one more example of the importance of audio commentary in any movie’s home release.  It can take a bad movie and potentially make it worth a second watch, or it can take a good movie (such as this work) and make it great.  Considering that along with the writing team’s adaptation of Sherry’s story and the cast’s work, the movie proves in whole to be a work that movie lovers and classic film buffs alike will enjoy.  It combines to make Sudden Fear one of this year’s top new re-issues.

Cohen Media Group’s upcoming re-issue of Joseph Kaufman Productions’ Sudden Fear is one of this year’s top new DVD/BD re-issues.  That is evidenced in its story, adapted from Edna Sherry’s original novel.  While the story presents a number of differences from Sherry’s literary work, it is still an entertaining work in its own right.  There are a lot of moviemakers out there today who could take a lesson from the writing team’s approach to this story considering that.  The work of the movie’s cast on camera is just as important to note here, especially that of lead stars Joan Crawford and Jack Palance.  Their work will keep viewers just as engaged and entertained as the story itself.  The bonus commentary included in the movie’s upcoming re-issue rounds out the most important of its elements.  Jeremy Arnold once again offers a great depth of knowledge about and appreciation for the movie, even as robotic as his delivery seems at times.  Each element is important in its own right to the movie’s presentation here.  All things considered, CMG’s upcoming re-issue of Sudden Fear proves itself to be one of this year’s top new DVD/BD re-issues.  It will be available Tuesday, December 13.  More information on this and other titles from Cohen Media Group is available online now at:

Websitehttp://cohenmedia.net

Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/CohenMediaGroup

Twitterhttp://twitter.com/cohenmediagroup

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.

Rock, Prog-Rock Purists Will Enjoy Crack The Sky’s Latest LP

Courtesy: Carry On Music

Veteran prog rock band Crack The Sky is apparently one of those acts that doe not rest easily on is merits.  The band has released more than 15 albums since the release of its self-titled debut album in 1975.  In the time since its release, the band has let no more than four years pass between any of its albums.  One would think that as much music as this band has released in the more than 40 years since its debut record’s release, the band would have slowed down a bit or even shown a hint of wear and tear in its music.  The band’s latest outing – Tribes — however, says quite the opposite, as is evidenced in its musical and lyrical content.  ‘Another Beautiful Day’ is just one of the songs that serves to support the noted statement.  It will be discussed shortly.  ‘Boom Boom,’ which comes later in the album’s hour-plus run time, does its own share to show what makes the album such a strong new offering from Crack The Sky.  It will be addressed a little later.  ‘Dear Leaders,’ one of the album’s early entries, is yet another way in which the record shows the band’s continued success and strength.  It will also be discussed later.  When it is considered with the other songs noted here and the rest of the album’s entries, the record in whole a strong new offering from one of rock’s currently longest running bands.

Crack The Sky’s latest album Tribes is a positive new offering from the veteran prog-rock band.  It is a work that shows despite staying so busy over the course of more than four decades, this band has not lost its step.  That is proven in part through the song ‘Another Beautiful Day.’  Coming almost halfway through the album’s run, this song’s musical arrangement is a very King’s X style composition.  That is evidenced in the song’s guitar arrangement and vocals.  There is also a bit of a classic rock sensibility to the arrangement that adds to its interest.  The two influences together make the arrangement overall an engaging and entertaining work.  It is just one part of what makes the song stand out.  The commentary in the song’s lyrical content adds to the appeal.

The lyrical content featured in ‘Another Beautiful Day’ is a social commentary.  It opens with the song’s subject stating, “turn on the TV and I feel like screaming/I close my eyes and I hope I’m dreaming/get out of bed, but feel like going back/The world is having a heart attack/Another beautiful day.”  He continues in the song’s second verse, “I got a feeling that big brother is watching me…Look out my window to see what’s going on/Another country heard from, hey, hey/Another beautiful day.”  He then adds, “Nobody’s listening/Everybody’s screaming/I hold onto you/Baby, I’m scared/But I’ll take good care of you.”  As noted at the start of this, the song’s lyrical content is clearly a commentary about everything going on in the world today.  The way in which the commentary is delivered is rather sarcastic with a clear sense of cynicism.  That would explain why the song’s musical arrangement is not the angry work that it could be.  The arrangement works to help translate the noted almost disillusionment exhibited in the song’s lyrical content.  Keeping all of this in mind, the song overall may not be necessarily unique in its lyrical content, but is still a sign that this band can effectively make a song that will resonate with audiences.  It is just one of the songs that makes the band’s latest offering stand out.  ‘Boom Boom,’ which comes late in the album’s run, is another example of the album’s strength.

As is the case with ‘Another Beautiful Day,’ the musical arrangement featured in ‘Boom Boom’ is another clearly classic rock-influenced composition.  Front man John Palumbo’s slightly gritty vocal delivery and keyboard performance works with the guitars, bass and drums to give the song another King’s X vibe.  What is important to note here is that the song is not just a re-hashing of the previously discussed arrangement.  It is still its own unique work whose laid back groove will keep listeners engaged and entertained.  It works with the song’s lyrical content to add even more appeal to the work.

Palumbo’s vocals are not as easy to decipher here without a lyrics sheet to reference.  However, what can be deciphered leads to the interpretation that the song is about perhaps just that need to have someone.  That is inferred as Palumbo sings near the song’s end, “Life is easy/When you’ve got someone who cares.”  He goes on to mention the impact of “a nice meal ready in the kitchen” and “hot coffee” as well as apparently even intercourse.  Looking through what can be deciphered here together with the mood set by the song’s musical arrangement, the two elements collectively make this song its own unique addition to the album.  It becomes yet another aspect of Tribes that shows why this album is worth hearing, but not the last of the album’s most notable entries.  ‘Dear Leaders,’ which comes early in the album’s run, is another standout addition to the album.

‘Dear Leaders’ changes things up significantly in terms of its musical arrangement.  Instead of the classic rock sensibilities that run through the majority of Tribes, this arrangement instead opts for something a little more modern with its heavy percussion and its electronics.  The best comparison that one can make here is to what Pink Floyd might sound like if it was still around today.  The song has that kind of air about it in its arrangement.  At the same time, one might even make a comparison to some of U2’s works from the mid to late 1990s here, too.  It sounds like an odd combination of influences, but somehow it manages to work here.  The melancholy mood established in the song’s musical arrangement does well to help translate the emotion in the song’s lyrical theme, which is its own socio-political commentary.

The commentary come right from the song’s outset as Palumbo sings, “Dear leaders/Are you watching/Dear leaders/Are you listening/Dear leaders/Are you watching/Dear leader/There’s something wrong with you/Dear leaders/Can’t see what’s in front of you/If I could/I’d make you all go away forever.”  He continues, “Dear leaders/It’s not too late/Dear leaders/To put aside your hate/Dear leaders/To set your people free.”  From there, he mentions that he’d “tell my wife not to go outside/tell my Jesus not to cry his eyes.”  There is even a mention of the world committing its own suicide.  Again, this plaintive message to the world’s leaders will resonate with plenty of listeners, especially considering how the song’s musical arrangement accompanies the lyrical theme.  It is just one more song in whole that shows what makes Tribes a successful new effort from Crack The Sky.  When it is considered along with the other two songs examined here and the rest of the album’s songs, the whole presents itself as a work that rock and prog rock fans alike will find is worth hearing at least once.

Crack The Sky’s new album Tribes is a positive new effort from the veteran prog rock band.  It is a presentation that will appeal widely to rock and  prog rock fans alike will enjoy.  That is proven both through the album’s musical and lyrical content.  Each of the songs examined here serves to support the noted statements.  When they are considered with the rest of the album’s entries, the whole may not *ahem* crack mainstream radio, but will still appeal widely to plenty of audiences.  Tribes is scheduled for release Friday through Carry On Music.

More information on Crack The Sky’s new album is available along with all of the band’s latest news at https://www.facebook.com/officialcrackthesky.  

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.