The Fifth’s Self-Titled EP Will Appeal To Classic, Guitar Rock Purists Alike

Courtesy: Head First Entertainment

Independent rock band The Fifth is scheduled to independently release its new, self-titled EP Friday.  The five-song record is a positive first outing for the band.  That is especially the case for audiences who are fans of the pure, guitar-driven rock that bridged the late 80s and early 90s.  Each item will be discussed in itself.  The record’s production rounds out its most important elements and will also be discussed later.  Each item noted is important in its own right to the whole of the EP.  All things considered, they make the EP a successful new presentation that The Fifth’s established audiences and targeted listeners will agree deserves high marks.

The Fifth’s forthcoming self-titled EP is a presentation that will find wide appeal among the band’s established audiences and more casual rock purists.  That is proven in part through the record’s featured musical arrangements.  The arrangements in question exhibit the kind of pure, guitar-driven styles and sounds that bridged the late 80s and 90s.  Their collective sound and stylistic approaches lend themselves to comparison to works from the band’s fellow North Carolina-based rock band Faith & Scars.  Right from the record’s outset, audiences get an arrangement in ‘Shake Little Sister’ that is just as comparable to works from the likes of Motley Crue and Poison, what with the operatic vocals, the rich guitar line and just as bombastic drums.  ‘Home,’ with its more subdued approach, is its own familiar style composition that again throws back to days gone by.  Meanwhile, a track, such as ‘Coming to Get You,’ in its blues-based presentation is so similar to so many rock songs that were popular in the early 90s and are still just as popular today.  To that end, it is more proof of the appeal that the record’s musical arrangements generate.  That is even clearer when this and the other arrangements noted here are considered with the two others not directly examined.  All things considered, they leave no doubt that the record’s musical content will engage and entertain audiences.  It is just one part of what makes the record successful.  The lyrical content that accompanies the record’s musical arrangements makes for its own appeal.

The lyrical content that is featured in The Fifth takes on a variety of topics.  The EP’s opener, ‘Shake Little Sister,’ is as the title notes, a song about a man who is admiring a woman.  ‘Calm Before The Storm’ seems to be a commentary about a broken relationship, but in this case not so much romantic, but plutonic.  There is something in the way that front man Roy Cathey sings about people’s paths never crossing again.  The sense of foreboding that Cathey seems to paint in the song’s opening verse paints toward that inference just as much and continues as he sings that “I know things will never be the same.”  There do not seem to be any real allusions here to a romantic relationship, but rather to the impact of the past on the present and future.  This is all this critic’s interpretation, of course.  Regardless, it suffices to say that this song is not about a broken relationship, but something quite opposite.  The contemplative ‘Home’ comes across as one of those familiar themes of someone looking back at life and where life is going.  Reaching back to the musical aspect, the song’s arrangement is one of those over the top hard rock ballads that was so beloved in the 80s, matching the big hair of the age.  Cathey sings here about letting go of those memories from the past and moving forward, again showing the theme of that rumination.  That and the musical approach together is sure to connect with a wide range of audiences.  ‘Coming to Get You’ meanwhile is another song that is about a man who is obsessed with a woman.  Considering that the band has already touched on this topic in the EP’s opener, it is a familiar topic.  It is just presented in a different fashion than in ‘Shake Little Sister.’  On yet another note, ‘Roll The Bones’ (not to be confused with the song made famous by Rush) takes audiences in yet another direction.  This is just a song whose lyrical content is full of swagger and energy.  It’s just a full on celebratory song about going out and having a good time with friends.  Looking back through all of this, it is clear that the band touches on a relatively wide range of items that are still in themselves accessible to audiences.  That overall accessibility along with the arrangements’ accessibility makes the album’s overall content reason enough to hear this EP.  The content is only part of what makes the record worth hearing.  The EP’s production brings everything together and completes the record’s presentation.

The production that went into The Fifth is important to address because of the different sounds and energies in each composition.  As noted, a song, such as ‘Home’ is one of those familiar contemplative rock ballads from the 80s that starts off subdued, but eventually crescendos in its solo.  That means that from beginning to end, full attention had to be paid to each musician’s performance.  The softer moments early on had to have the fullest impact as did the bigger, bombastic solo and finale.  Every bit of it all was expertly balanced throughout, leading the song to be a favorite among any listener.  On another note, the edge of ‘Coming To Get You’ required a different approach in the production.  That is because of the aforementioned swagger that is exhibited through the song.  Particular attention had to be paid not necessarily just to the guitar line here as a result, but just as much to the nuances in the effects used therein to really bring out that edge.  Again, the attention to detail paid off here just as much as in any other song.  It really brings out the confidence in Cathey’s vocals and even in the guitar line.  Much the same can be said of the attention to the bass and drums, too.  Each couldn’t just be a rich presentation, but had to have certain emphasis on specific notes and beats to really enhance the song’s presentation even more.  The attention to that detail paid off just as much.  It is just one more example of what makes the EP’s production stand out.  When the overall production is considered together with the EP’s content, the whole of the record proves to be fully successful.

The Fifth’s forthcoming self-titled EP is a successful new presentation from the independent rock band.  Its success comes in part through its featured musical arrangements.  The arrangements stand out in their distinct 80s and 90s pure guitar rock approach.  From the familiar rock ballad styles of the 80s to the harder edged stuff, and more, there is plenty for audiences of said sounds to enjoy.  The lyrical themes that accompany the EP’s musical arrangements are also of note.  That is because they are just as familiar and accessible as the record’s musical arrangements.  The production that went into the EP’s creation brings everything together and completes the presentation, making sure that its general effect is as pleasing as its content.  Each item examined is important in its own way to the whole of this record.  All things considered, they make the EP a positive new offering from the band.

The Fifth is scheduled for release Friday.  More information on the EP is available along with the band’s latest news at:

Website: https://reverbnation.com/thefifth

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/thefifthmusic

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

‘Renegades’ Is Another Solid Return For Veteran Rock Band L.A. Guns

Courtesy: Golden Robot Records

Veteran rock band L.A. Guns unveiled another preview of its new album Renegades this week.  The band debuted the album’s new single ‘All That You Are.’  The album’s fourth single – behind ‘Crawl,’ ‘Well Oiled Machine,’ and the album’s title track — it is just one more example of what makes the record a positive new offering from the band.  ‘Why Ask Why,’ which comes between two of those singles early in the album’s 39-minute run, is another notable addition to the record.  It will be addressed shortly.  ‘You Can’t Walk Away’ is another intriguing addition to Renegades.  It will be discussed a little later.  ‘Don’t Wanna Know,’ the album’s finale, is yet another show of the album’s strength.  When it is considered along with the other noted songs, the record’s existing singles and its four remaining songs, the whole becomes a widely appealing record for rock fans across the board.

L.A. Guns’ latest album Renegades is a presentation that will appeal equally to the band’s longtime fans just as much as it will more casual listeners and rock fans in general.  The four singles that the record has now produced support the noted statements without question.  They are just some of the songs that show what makes the record so appealing.  ‘Why Ask Why,’ which comes early in the 10-song record’s run adds to that appeal in its own way.  That is due in part to the song’s musical arrangement.  The arrangement in question is a straight forward, guitar-driven classic rock style opus that throws in a touch of a modern rock element for a whole that is instantly infectious and keeps listeners engaged and entertained throughout its nearly three-and-a-half minute run time.  The energy in the fiery musical arrangement serves well to help translate the message in the song’s lyrical content and its associated emotion.

The lyrical content in question comes across as a familiar story of someone dealing with a toxic relationship.  Whether that relationship is romantic or plutonic is left to interpretation, but it seems relatively clear as front man Kurt Frohlich sings in the song’s lead verse, “I don’t know everything you feel/But I know that what I’m feeling is unreal/Can you show us what’s on my mind/Will you walk the wild side blind/Why ask why/I don’t mind.”  He continues in the song’s second verse, “Can you reach through inner space/Will you choose to meet me face-to-face/Are you two-faced/Yeah, you get on my last nerve…Why ask why/Why ask why/So don’t mind/’Cause I don’t mind.”  A small portion of the lyrics is difficult to decipher sans lyrics to reference, but the bigger picture here is relatively clear.  The energy in the song’s musical arrangement works to help translate the feeling of frustration obviously going through the main subject’s mind.  That is especially the case considering the tone in the guitar and bass.  To that end, the pairing of the noted musical and lyrical content here is certain to help the song connect with listeners and in turn, make the song accessible.  It all comes together to make the song just one example of what makes Renegades a positive return for this lineup of L.A. Guns.  ‘You Can’t Walk Away’ is another of the album’s notable entries.

‘You Can’t Walk Away’ is such an interesting addition to Renegades because it really defies everything that audiences have come to expect from L.A. Guns throughout its life.  Yes, there is a little bit of a ballad type of approach here.  At the same time though, the production, the choruses, and the instrumentation really throws back to the 1960s and some very distinct influence of The Beatles.  It really is the album’s most surprising and engaging work because of that approach.  That musical aspect, with all of is production and emotion works with the song’s familiar lyrical content about a relationship, to make the song even more appealing.

The noted lyrical theme is mad clear right from the song’s outset as Frohlich sings, “Nothing’s right/Gonna be a long way home tonight/A lover’s fight/I’ve been away too long/Another day rolls by/And it feels like an old friend/But nobody wants to do it/No one seems to care/And nobody wants to listen anyway/You can’t walk away/Something inside is telling you/Why is it so hard to do/You can’t walk away/When it all falls apart/Leave with your heart.”  The theme is made even clearer in the second verse, in which Frohlich sings, “Nobody pays your precious way/Thought it was an easy thing to do/But when you turned around something told you/Go back to where they know you/You can walk away/Something inside is telling you/Why is it so hard to do/You can walk away/Still it all falls apart/Leave with your heart.”  Keeping all of this in mind, the song’s lyrical theme remains relatively clear.  This deals with the emotional difficulties that come with a breakup.  The addition of the song’s subdued musical arrangement adds even more to the song’s overall impact.  The two elements jointly make this song one of this album’s most notable and important works.  Together with ‘Why Ask Why,’ the two songs show even more clearly what makes Renegades an appealing new offering from L.A. Guns.  The two songs are just a glimpse into the album’s appeal.  ‘Don’t Wanna Know,’ the record’s finale, is one more of the album’s most notable entries.

‘Don’t Wanna Know’ is a good way for L.A. Guns to close out its new album.  That is because this song’s musical arrangement is pure 80s hair metal.  The light, almost bouncy feel of Scotty Griffin’s guitar work and that of drummer Steve Riley works with Frohlich’s equally loose vocal delivery to take listeners back to the heyday of L.A. Guns, Motley Crue and Poison.  It is a fun, upbeat work that is certain to appeal to plenty of listeners, especially considering the more straight forward feel of the album’s opener, ‘Crawl’ and the rest of the album’s work.  It’s like this song is a reward to listeners for having made their way through the rest of the record.  Interestingly enough, as light and upbeat as the musical arrangement is here, it makes for an interesting contrast to the song’s lyrical content.


The lyrical content that is featured in ‘Don’t Wanna Know’ comes across as perhaps an indictment of someone going through addiction of some sort.  This is inferred as Frohlich sings in the song’s lead verse, “Heard it from my best friend/Heard it on the street/What’s going down/You puttin’ me down/Sayin’ I was obsolete/Heard it from your mother/Said you’re not the same/Tellin’ lies/With bloodshot eyes/Bringing the family shame/I’ve been this way too long/Too long/Nothing right or wrong.”  He continues in the song’s second verse, “Heard it from your doctor/You’ve been running late…never sleep/Losin’ all your weight/Heard it on the telephone/Picked it up to call/Got no place to hide my face/Even on a bathroom wall/It only hurts my soul/Don’t wanna know/Makes me lose control.”  What is interesting here is that all of this comes across in an almost frustrated yet sarcastic fashion.  It really makes for an interesting listen, again, especially when it is paired with the song’s high energy musical arrangement.  Maybe this is meant to be someone who is fed up with hearing about what a person is doing to himself/herself through the noted supposed addiction.  This is all just this critic’s own interpretation.  Regardless, the song offers audiences plenty of reason for engagement.  It all comes together here to show once more why Renegades is such a positive return for L.A. Guns.  When this song is considered along with the others examined here, the rest of the record’s songs and its singles, the whole of the album proves the album to be a widely appealing new offering from the veteran rock band.

Renegades is an interesting new offering from the veteran rock band L.A. Guns.  Its musical and lyrical content alike offers listeners so much motivation to remain engaged and entertained throughout its nearly 40-minute run time.  That is evidenced in all three of the songs examined here.  The same can be said of the four singles that the album has now produced and the album’s other songs not addressed here.  Each song is notable in its own right to the whole of Renegades.  All things considered, the album proves itself to be another example of why L.A. Guns remains one of rock’s elite acts.

More information on L.A. Guns’ new album is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:

Websitehttp://www.laguns.net

Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/officiallaguns

To keep up with the latest entertainment news and reviews, go 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.

South Of Eden’s Second Studio Recording Could Be The Band’s Breakout Record

Courtesy: Lava/Republic Records

Neo-classic rock band South of Eden  (formerly Black Coffee) will release its first major label studio recording Friday.  The band is scheduled to release its new four-song EP The Talk through Lava/Republic Records.  The 16-minute record is the band’s first new music since it released its 2018 album Take One under its former moniker.  That nine-song album was the band’s debut (and only) album under the name, but was an impressive offering from the group.  Now two years later the band has found success yet again with its debut EP.  That success is thanks to the record’s musical and lyrical content together, as is evidenced right from the EP’s outset in its title track.  It will be addressed shortly.  ‘Morning Brew’ is another way in which the EP shows its strength.  It will be addressed a little later.  The EP’s closer, which is also its lead singles, is one more example of how this record’s musical and lyrical content comes together to make it such an impressive new effort from the band.  When it is considered with the other two songs noted here and the EP’s one other song, ‘Solo,’ the whole of the EP becomes a work that will definitely leave listeners talking about South of Eden.

South of Eden’s sophomore studio recording and debut EP The Talk is a successful new offering from the up-and-coming neo-classic rock band.  It is a work that will appeal to rock and roll purists and rock fans in general.  That is thanks to the record’s combined musical and lyrical content.  The EP’s opener/title track is just one of the songs that serves to support the noted statements.  The song’s musical arrangement wastes no time grabbing listeners in its opening bars with its up-tempo riff.  That riff gives way to a more reserved nature in the song’s lead verse.  That reserved approach gives way to the noted high energy chorus.  The back and forth of that reserved and more up-tempo sounds ensures listeners’ engagement and entertainment from beginning to end of the nearly four-minute song.  What is really interesting to note here is that the classic rock influences of AC/DC and Guns N’ Roses, it also lends itself to comparisons to works from Buckcherry and Alter Bridge.  In other words, the classic rock influences are infused alongside the modern guitar rock influences.  The end result is an arrangement that is a strong start for the album and just one example of why the EP’s musical content is so strong.  The lyrical accompaniment to that musical content adds to the song’s appeal.

Not having a lyrics sheet to reference, the song’s lyrical content is difficult to decipher.  However, from what can be deciphered sans said sheet, it can be inferred (hopefully correctly) that this song is a commentary of sorts about how people say one thing but do something opposite; those people who feed lies to themselves and others.  This is supposed as front man Ehab Omran sings in the song’s chorus about someone who is seemingly rejecting the help that others offer.  He goes so far as to sing in the chorus, “You say you’re trying/But who can tell/When you talk, talk, talk?”  There is even mention in the song’s second verse of “helpful hands/reaching in/everyone tries/But you don’t give in” before he asks again, “What do you want?”  The song’s lead verse adds to the discussion as it addresses someone who in a different situation who doesn’t seem to know what he or she wants.  Again, this interpretation is made wholly sans lyrics to reference.  Hopefully it is somewhere in the proverbial ballpark.  Right or wrong, it can at least be agreed that there is a certain commentary going on here.  That in itself is sure to engage listeners while the song’s musical arrangement will entertain them.  To that end, it makes for a strong start for the EP.  It is just one of the songs that shows the EP’s strength.  ‘Morning Brew,’ the EP’s third song is one more example of why audiences will enjoy the record.

‘Morning Brew’ is much more reserved in comparison to ‘The Talk’ and to the EP’s other two songs in terms of its musical arrangement.  This arrangement is a bluesy, subdued composition that lends itself to comparisons works from the likes of maybe Johnny Lang with its slick guitar riffs.  That reserved nature in this almost blues ballad type composition serves to help translate the emotion in the song’s lyrical theme.

The lyrical content at the center of ‘Morning Brew’ comes across as an introspective statement.  It seems to come from the mind of someone who is going through a difficult time, emotionally speaking.  This is inferred as Omran sings in the song’s lead verse, “Where do you go/When your days are numbered/You’re feeling lonely/Down by the seashore/When your days are bright/Lights are heavy/Where would you go/If I can’t see straight/And my feet stay steady/Walk out the door/All we do/Our world is not ready/Ain’t that the way it goes/When you’re all alone.”  He continues in the song’s second verse, “What would they say/If they tell you no/But you do it anyway/Life’s all a big game/Where the people lose/When the evil stands to gain/Looking down the aisle of a train/People’s eyes/All I see is pain/newspapers and crosswords say we’re all lookin’ down the barrel of a gun.” Again, there is a lot of contemplation here about one’s own situation and the world.   When this deep thought is coupled with the song’s so subtle that it’s heavy arrangement, the result is a deeply moving work that stands strong on its own merits.  It is just one more example of what makes the EP stand out.  The EPs closer and lead single ‘Dancing With Fire’ is yet another key addition to the record.

The musical arrangement at the heart of ‘Dancing With Fire’ is as fiery as the title implies.  Drummer Tommy McCullough and guitarist Justin Young lead the way this time out.  Omran and bassist Nick Frantianne add their own touch to the arrangement, fleshing it out even more and making it just as strong a finale for the EP as its opener was a start.  Fans of bands, such as Motley Crue, Guns N’ Roses, and Poison will appreciate this arrangement.  It’s just one part of what makes this song shine.  The song’s lyrical content adds to its impact.

This is probably the easiest song to understand of the EP’s four tracks in terms of its lyrical content.  It clearly focuses on a person who is head over heels in love with another person.  This is made relatively clear early on as Omran sings in the song’s lead verse, “Well you’re pushin’ left/Pullin’ right/I can’t feel my hands tonight/Now, baby/yeah, you tell me when/tell me who/Stuck between a hard place and you/Sweet lady/You’ve been talking for so long/Putting up so strong/Forget about it/Got me feeling so wrong/Trapped in wire/’Cause I’ve been dancing with fire/Those flames keep burning up brighter/You’re walking past desire/But I can’t keep from loving you.”  This is pretty clear in its message.  This is someone who is crazy for that other person.  Any doubt is eliminated in the song’s second verse, which finds Omran singing, “Here we go/Go again/Ultimatums that never end/I’m hazy/With your smiling lips and your whispering tongue/Getting by/Saying you’re so young and lazy.”  Again, here audiences get someone whose mind is obsessed with that other person.  This readily accessible lyrical theme couples with the song’s equally accessible musical arrangement to make the song in whole the EP’s best song.  When it is considered with the other two songs noted here and the EP’s one remaining song, ‘Solo,’ the whole of the EP becomes a work that rock and roll purists everywhere will appreciate and a record that deserves its own consideration for a spot on any critic’s list of the year’s top new EPs.

South of Eden’s second studio recording and debut EP The Talk is a positive new offering from the neo-classic rock band that purists of the genre will certainly appreciate.  That is due to its musical arrangements and lyrical content alike.  All three of the songs discussed here support that statement.  The EP’s one remaining song not addressed here supports that statement, too.  All things considered, the EP’s content overall makes it a record that will leave audiences talking.  Yes, that awful pun was intended.  It is scheduled for release Friday through Lava/Republic Records.

More information on South of Eden’s new EP is available along with all of the band’s latest news and more at:

 

Websitehttp://southofedenband.com

Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/southofedenmusic

Twitterhttp://twitter.com/southofedenband

 

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.

South Of Eden Debuts ‘Dancing With Fire’ Video

Courtesy: Lava/Republic Records/TAG Publicity

Neo-classic rock band South of Eden (formerly Black Coffee) has a new single, video and label home.

The band debuted the video for its new single ‘Dancing With Fire‘ Tuesday.  The song is the band’s first new music under its new moniker and through its new label home, Lava/Republic Records.  Under its former name, South of Eden released the full-length album Take One independently in 2018.

South of Eden’s new single is another neo-classic rock style approach whose arrangement lends itself to comparisons to works from bands, such as Motley Crue, Guns N’ Roses and Poison.  The song’s lyrical theme is readily accessible in its own right, focusing on a person who is head over heels for another person.

The video features the band performing the song in a backdrop that is meant to look like an intimate live outdoor setting, such as a patio at an upscale eatery.

The band talked about its new song in a recent interview, noting, “We wanted this to be a personality piece, and with all of us in quarantine, we knew the best way to do that was to show what we have accomplished leading up to this release.  John Payne, our media man, has been following us around for the last two years!  The best thing to show with raw music is raw footage.”

‘Dancing With Fire’ is available to stream and download here.

More information on South of Eden’s new single and video is available along with all of the band’s latest news and more at:

 

Website: http://southofedenband.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/southofedenband

 

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.

Angeles’ Latest LP Keeps The Flame Burning For Classic Rock Fans

Courtesy: Dark Star Records/Sony

When veteran rock band Angeles released its 12th full-length studio recording Fire It Up last year, it was the first time in more than 40 years that the band, founded by Dale Lytle, had released any new music to the masses.  Having been away from the limelight for such a long time, one would have thought the band would have had a hard time getting back into the swing of things, but as it turned out, the case was quite the opposite.  Now less than a year after its release, Angeles has returned with a new album in the form of Hell on High Heels and slightly changed lineup, — now former vocalist Gwendolyn Casella parted ways with the band following the album’s release and was subsequently replaced by new front man Louis Collins.  The eight-song record is scheduled for release Friday through Dark Star Records/Sony.  The new forthcoming 30-minute record continues the success that the band enjoyed in Fire It Up and builds on that success with its musical and lyrical content.  That is proven in part through one of the album’s latest singles, ‘Celebrate.’  It will be discussed shortly.  ‘Heal The Wounds,’ which is another of the album’s singles, is another way in which the album shows the band’s continued success on this record.  ‘Start Living’ is yet another example of what make Angeles’ new album another successful effort from the band.  Together with the other two songs noted here and the other five songs not noted here, the whole of Hell on High Heels proves to be another work that will certainly appeal to Angeles’ most devoted fan base as well as the most devoted 80s rock aficionados.

Angeles’ forthcoming album Hell on High Heels is a positive return for the band, especially having come less than a year after the band released the record’s predecessor Fire It Up.  Considering how little time has passed between these two records – unlike Fire It Up and its predecessor – one might think the album might feel rushed, and in turn messy.  However, the exact opposite is the case here.  That is proven in part through one of the album’s latest singles, ‘Celebrate.’  The musical arrangement at the center of ‘Celebrate’ is an upbeat, positive work that lends itself to comparisons to works from the likes of Poison, Ratt, and Motley Crue.  The noted musical arrangement fits the song’s lyrical theme, which touts the joy of just being together with friends and family.  It is that full-on happy, upbeat party rock sound that was so popular during that age of big guitar riffs and even bigger hair.  The positive vibe exuded by the song’s musical arrangement does well to help convey the sense of joy that is exhibited through the song’s lyrical content.

Collins sings in the song’s lead verse, “Slip on my boots/And get my head on right/We’re going to a rock and roll show/meet up with the boys/And we’re heading to the club/We’re fired up and ready to go/Raise a glass tonight and let’s celebrate/It’s only midnight and it’s not too late.”  He continues in the song’s second verse, “The drinks are flowing/And the music’s pumping/We’re having a real good time/the pretty girls are dancing and they’re looking at me/Gonna make one of ‘em mine/Sweet little Susie’s coming home with me/And we’re gonna set the night on fire/We’re back to my place and we have some fun/burnin’ like a funeral pyre.”  From there, the story continues, telling about the morning after that night of celebration with friends and what followed.  Little Suzie stayed the night and left the next afternoon, not to give away too much.  From there, Collins sings about working hard all week and in turn, celebrating on the weekend.  It’s never revealed if the song’s subject saw little Susie again.  That is left to the listener’s imagination.  That aside, the overall…well..celebratory nature of this song musically and lyrically makes it a work that lives up to its name and will assuredly keep listeners engaged and entertained what with that throwback musical and lyrical style.  It is just one of the songs that makes Hell on High Heels another positive offering from Angeles.  ‘Heal The Wounds’ is another way in which the album shows its strength.

Much as is the case with ‘Celebrate,’ this song’s arrangement is another full-on throwback to the guitar-laden rock that made the 80s such a notable musical era.  While the stylistic approach is the same, the sound is anything but.  This song’s musical arrangement is more akin to Poison’s ‘Every Rose Has Its Thorn’ and some older works from Bon Jovi.  It starts off soft and simple before becoming much more bombastic yet still ballad-esque in the same stylistic vein of the noted older works.  That familiar stylistic approach will appeal to the already mentioned audiences just as much as the arrangement featured in ‘Celebrate.’  It goes well with the contemplative nature in the song’s lyrical theme, which serves as a reminder to listeners that “time will heal the wounds,” of a broken relationship, as front man Louis Collins sings in the song’s chorus.

Collins sings sings in the song’s lead verse, “I’m all out of things to say/Out of tears to cry/All out of thoughts…Can barely let out a sigh/the memories and time/All pas me by/See you on the street/Makes me wanna die/Time will heal the wounds/Time will kill the pain.”  He continues in the song’s second verse, “I’m all out of whisky/I’m down to my last cigarette/Trying to get it together/I haven’t figured it out just yet/Sleepless nights, they haunt me/I’m laying down in a cold sweat/It’s time for me to go/It’s time to raise my bet/’Cause time will heal the wounds/Time will kill the pain.”  Following this point, listeners are presented the story of the actual breakup and the subject’s emotional recovery from that breakup.  It would explain the much more uplifting sound that gradually develops through the remainder of the song.  Considering that the song’s subject reminds himself that time will heal the wounds and kill the pain, this is a key to continuing to make sure this song connects just as easily with listeners through its words as much as through its music.  All things considered, the song is just one more way in which Hell on High Heels proves its strength in itself and within the bigger community of new 80s rock style releases put out so far this year.  ‘Start Living’ is yet another way in which the album holds its own alongside its counterparts.

‘Start Living’ is another positive, uplifting (so to speak) work featured in Angeles’ latest album.  That is due in part to its musical arrangement, which is a work that is as energetic and upbeat as ‘Celebrate.’  Its sound and approach is also just as similar to works from Motley Crue and others as that song.  It should be noted that even with that stylistic similarity, the song still bears its own sound, so it is not just ripping off the works from those bands or even itself.  To that end, the song’s arrangement does its own part to keep listeners engaged and entertained in this case.  Its lyrical content builds on that engagement and entertainment.

Much like ‘Celebrate’ is a full-on song that pays homage to being out with friends and just living the rock and roll life, so does this song in its own right.  Collins even sings in the song’s lead verse, “Thirty days in and I’m feeling down…Sick of the walls/I’m tired and bored/I wanna rock the world.But I’m stuck indoors/Let’s get moving/Start living all night long.”  He continues in the song’s second verse, “Look at my guitar/I play real loud/And take the shows to the biggest crowd/Party all night with the pretty girls…getting in the fights with the boys in the band…Patch things p with a whiskey shot/Do it again tomorrow/Ready or not/let’s get moving/Start living all night long.”  Now while some of the lyrics are indecipherable without a lyrics sheet to reference, enough is understood in this case that it is pretty obvious what is being addressed here.  There is a mention of fever making someone feel bad.  It could be interpreted that this has to do something with the impact of COVID-19, considering that the album was being recorded late last year and early this year as COVID-19 started to take over the world.  That mention of getting tired of looking at the walls strengthens that supposition even more.  It comes across as Collins talking about just wanting to get out and live, to get out and hit the road, which is what so many bands, acts and groups want to do, but sadly likely won’t get to do until at least next year.  It makes for its own engagement and entertainment for audiences.  That is because the fans want to be out there just as much as the bands.  Keeping that collective mindset and the energy and sound in the song’s musical arrangement, it becomes increasingly clear why this song is another standout addition to Hell on High Heels.  It is certain to become an anthem in its own right as bands and audiences alike await the return of live music.  Together with the other songs noted here and the rest of its works, Hell on High Heels shows why it is a positive return for Angeles.

Angeles has scored another win with its 13th full-length studio recording, Hell on High Heels.  That is due in no small part to its musical arrangements and lyrical themes, all of which are sure to engage and entertain audiences in their own way.  That is proven through three of the album’s eight songs addressed here.  When that trio of songs is addressed along with the rest of the album’s works, the album in whole proves, again, why it is another positive return for the band.  Hell on High Heels is scheduled for release Friday through Dark Star Records/Sony.

The album’s track listing and recording information is noted below.

‘Hell On High Heels’ tracklisting:
1. Hell On High Heels – Lytle/Collins – 4:43
2. Celebrate – Lytle/Collins – 3:37
3. Heal The Wounds – Lytle/Collins – 3:52
4. Apocalypse – Lytle/Collins – 4:24
5. Start Living – Lytle/Collins – 2:58
6. Rolling Like Thunder – Lytle/Collins – 3:56
7. Run – Lytle/Collins – 3:06
8. Holly Fenton – Merrit/James – 3:22

Music recorded at Clear Lake Recording Studios N. Hollywood CA – Ara Sarkisian.
Vocals recorded at MT Studios Burbank CA – Matt Thorne.
Produced by Dale Lytle and Matt Thorne
Mixed and mastered by Matt Thorne
Front cover by Jeffrey A. Swanson
Back cover by Connie Lytle
Graphic Design by Monarch Digital Design

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

 

Websitehttp://www.angelesband.com

Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/TheAngelesBand

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.

L.A. Guns Debuts New Single, ‘Well Oiled Machine’

Courtesy: Golden Robot Records

Veteran rock band L.A. Guns released its latest single this week.

The band debuted its new single ‘Well Oiled Machine‘ Monday.  The single is the second single from the band’s forthcoming album Renegades, which is slated for release later this year through Golden Robot Records.  The album’s release date will be announced soon.

The musical arrangement at the center of ‘Well-Oiled Machine’ is a full-on 80s, guitar-rock composition that will appeal to fans of the band’s fellow 80s rock stalwarts Ratt, Motley Crue and Poison.

While the song’s art features a motorcycle with the band’s logo, and the lyrics could easily be confused with descriptions of a motorcycle, the reality is that the song’s lyrical theme appears to center on a woman. This is clear as front man Phil Lewis sings in the song’s lead verse, “I love my baby/She’s a well oiled machine/She takes me places that I’ve never seen/Movin’ fast/She’s a satellite/Rollin’ thunder through the night.”  The note of the rolling thunder, again, could lead to confusion, as could the mention in the song’s chorus of the subject having a “jet black shine/Curves like a dream/Ain’t nothing like you ever seen.”  In reality, that is more likely a description of said woman, complete with raven-colored hair and hourglass figure.  Lewis continues in the song’s second verse, “Lights out under barren skies/We fade away into the rest of the night/She cuts me deep like a vampire/Light ’em up/Set the world on fire.”  That mention of the vampire simile shows even more clearly that this is not about a motorcycle or even a car, but a woman.  Examining all of this, the woman is apparently quite the intense figure.  This is a theme that countless bands have used, and even despite that, will still appeal to the band’s fans as it takes a classic approach to the topic.

‘Well Oiled Machine’ is available to stream and download here.

Courtesy: Golden Robot Records

The debut of the band’s new song comes less than two months after it debuted the album’s lead single Crawl.  According to a June 10 posting to L.A. Guns’ official Facebook page, the single had received more than 100,000 streams at that time. The song is available to stream and download through Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon, and Google Play.

The band debuted a making of video for ‘Crawl’ through Golden Robot Records’ official YouTube channel the day after ‘Crawl’ made its premiere.  The making of video is streaming here.  The song’s unofficial video, it features the band performing the single over a series of clips of the band in the studio working on the song.

More information on L.A. Guns’ new single is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:

 

Website: http://www.laguns.net

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

 

To keep up with the latest entertainment news and reviews, go 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.

 

 

Ratchet Dolls Debuts ‘Parasite!’ Lyric Video

Courtesy: TAG Publicity

Independent rock band Ratchet Dolls debuted the video for its latest single last week.

The band debuted the lyric video for its new single ‘Parasite!‘ Thursday. The song presents an upbeat musical arrangement whose heart is in its guitar work.  That work will appeal to fans of 80s hair metal from the likes of Poison and Motley Crue.

While the song’s driving musical arrangement will appeal to a very targeted audience base, its all-too-familiar lyrical content will connect with an even broader range of listeners.

Front man Kevin Sauceda explained the song’s lyrical theme in a recent interview.

“Although the song has a very uplifting feel, the lyrics themselves are rather dark,” he said.  “Parasite!’ speaks to us from the perspective of a person whose mental  health has deteriorated from trying to meet the standards of a non-committed partner.  One-sided relationships can lead to vulnerability…my goal is to try to help prevent others from having to walk that road; even if its just one person.”

‘Parasite!’ is available to stream and download through Apple Music, Spotify, Amazon and Google Play.

‘Parasite!’ is the second single from Ratchet Dolls’ upcoming as-yet untitled sophomore album.  The video for the album’s lead single ‘Out Of Control‘ was unveiled in September 2019.  Upon its release, ‘Out Of Control’ gained traction through major outlets, such as Loudwire’s “Weekly Wire Playlist” and KNAC Pure Rock.

More information on Ratchet Dolls’ new single, video, album and more is available online at:

 

Website: http://www.ratchetdolls.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/ratchetdolls

 

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DiMino’s New LP Shows Sometimes Its A Good Thing That “Old Habits Die Hard”

Courtesy: Frontiers Music Srl

Courtesy: Frontiers Music Srl

Old habits die hard.  It is a simple statement but also a very powerful statement.  For veteran vocalist Frank DiMino it is a statement that is especially true in listening to his new album Old Habits Die Hard.  The eleven-song record exhibits DiMino’s old habits from beginning to end, taking listeners back to the days of big hair and even bigger riffs in every single song.  For fans of 80s rock, with all of its pomp and bombast that is a very good thing because this record has every bit of that beginning with the album’s opener ‘Never Again.’  ‘Sweet Sensation is another one of the album’s offerings that exhibits that classic, over-the-top sound.  The same can be said of ‘Tonight’s The Night.’  All three songs show in their own respective way the sound on which Frank DiMino thrived in the early days of his career.  They are just a few of the songs featured in DiMino’s first solo record that make this musical trip back to the 80s so enjoyable for fans of that age.  Songs such as ‘I Can’t Stop Loving You,’ ‘Rockin In The City,’ and ‘Mad As Hell’ are just as notable in making that statement.  The classic song of love lost is even there in the form of ‘Even Now.’  Whether for those songs, the ones more directly noted here, or any of the album’s other compositions, the record in whole proves that while old habits may die hard, it’s not always a bad thing.

Frank DiMino’s first ever solo record Old Habits Die Hard is a record that any fan of big hair and even bigger riffs should hear.  From beginning to end its songs transport listeners back to the 80s with every element that made “hair metal” so…well…big during its era.  The album’s opener ‘Never Again’ is just one of the songs that serves to take listeners on that musical ride back in time.  Right from the song’s huge opening drum fill to its equally bombastic guitar line, which runs through the song’s five minute-plus run time, the song harkens directly back to the 80s.  The song’s lyrical content, which seems to address a certain woman (or type of woman), is just as familiar as the music that forms the song’s foundation.  The topic in question is hinted at as DiMino sings, “Backdoor lover/Undercover/Slip away into the night/Hands up baby/Drive me crazy/Come and step into the night/Reach out/No doubt/Looking for a lover…”  He goes on in the song’s chorus to sing, “Caught in the grip with my heart in the palm of your hand/It’s the last time I have told you/Never again.”  The song’s final verse is very similar to its lead and second verse stylistically as DiMino again addresses that woman again.  Considering what DiMino has to say about said women in the song’s final verse and in the song’s other verses, that woman is definitely something.  She is good but also good at being bad it would seem.  This is, again, very much the familiar topic for rock acts from the 80s- just as familiar as the song’s huge musical arrangement.  Both elements join here to make the song in whole a clear example of what makes OHDH (as it will henceforth be known) a good fit for any 80s rock aficionado.  It is just one of the songs that serves this end, too.  ‘Sweet Sensation is another one of the album’s offerings that exhibits that classic, over-the-top sound.

‘Never Again’ is a clear example of what makes Frank DiMino’s new solo record OHDH a good fit for any 80s rock fan.  That is due to the mix of its lyrical content and its huge musical arrangement.  Both elements are completely familiar to fans of 80s rock.  It is just one of the songs included in this record that serves to show what makes the record such a good fit for fans of that musical era.  ‘Sweet Sensation’ is another example of what makes the album one that 80s rock fans will appreciate.  Just as with ‘Never Again’ that is due in part to the song’s musical arrangement.  The song’s musical arrangement instantly conjures thoughts of AC/DC with its mid-tempo 4/4 time signature and blues-based guitar line.  Though, the inclusion of a keyboard line as a central element in the song’s chorus also conjures thoughts of Deep Purple among other veteran acts.  Considering those comparisons, the song’s musical arrangement in itself makes the song stand clearly apart from the other songs included in this record.  It is just one part of what makes the song (and ultimately album) stand out.  The song’s lyrical content is just as important to note here as its musical arrangement.  DiMino sings here, “Taking the midnight train home/So turn your lights down low/I can’t get you off my mind/I just lose all sense of time/Every time you come my way/You take the night out of the day/Everything just melts away/You bring the color to my gray/Feels like the first time/Deep down inside/Sweet sensation/You know where it feels so good/Sweet sensation/The only way it really could.”  He continues in similar fashion in the song’s second verse as he sings, “You know the things it takes to please/And bring a grown man to his knees/You can make the sunshine bright/And hide the darkness from the light.”  He keeps going on in exactly the same fashion.  So needless to say, DiMino doesn’t leave much room for guessing if any at all.  It is a classic schmaltzy song lyrically speaking.  What is interesting is that the song’s musical arrangement doesn’t match that schmaltzy lyrical content.  Rather, it gives the song more of a “come hither” type of feel.  This is a guy that is flirting with his subject, not trying to woo her.  Again, it is another familiar showing for hair rock fans.  It still is not the only other example of what makes OHDH a record that any 80s rock fan will appreciate.  ‘Tonight’s The Night’ is yet another example of what makes OHDH a good fit for 80s rock fans.

‘Never Again and ‘Sweet Sensation’ are both key examples of what makes OHDH a good fit for any hair rock aficionado out there.  That is due to the songs’ combination of big rock riffs and equally big lyrics.  They aren’t the only songs that serve to exhibit DiMino’s throwback approach to his new record.  ‘Tonight’s The Night’ is one more example of that throwback sound.  That is most evident in the song’s musical arrangement, which is centered on some Poison style guitar riffs.  Those riffs are, in themselves based richly in the rockabilly sounds of the 1950s.  It’s an interesting juxtaposition, but it still works.  Keeping that in mind, it doesn’t take much imagination to know what DiMino’s subject is singing about here.  Right off the top, he sings, “It’s gonna happen again/Just a matter of time and a matter of when/The night has just begun/We’re gonna have some fun/Cause’ don’t you know that tonight’s the night/Tonight’s the night/I’m gonna set a date…It’s time to cut use/You know there aint’ no use/Cause tonight’s the night.”  He makes note about jumping in the back of his Cadillac, and the heat that can’t be beat.  Considering all of this, the song’s subject is pretty clear.  The song’s musical energy adds to that pretty clear supposition, too.  What’s so interesting is that DiMino doesn’t try to be overly explicit in making the song’s subject so clear.  It shows that a song can still be kind of naughty without being downright nasty.  At the same time, it can still be fun too.  That being the case, both the song’s musical arrangement and its lyrical content work to show clearly why the song is yet another standout addition to OHDH.  Together with ‘Never Again’ and ‘Sweet Sensation,’ all three songs show collectively why OHDH is a record that any 80s aficionado will enjoy.

Old Habits Die Hard is a record that any 80s rock aficionado will appreciate.  That is regardless of listeners’ familiarity with Frank DiMino’s extensive resume.  Songs such as ‘Never Again,’ ‘Sweet Sensation,’ and ‘Tonight’s The Night’ make that crystal clear.  They are hardly the only songs that support that statement.  ‘I Can’t Stop Loving You,’ ‘Rockin’ In The City’ and ‘Mad As Hell’ each could be used to support that statement just as much as could any of the album’s other featured songs.  All things considered, Old Habits Die Hard proves in the long run that sometimes, it’s a good thing that old habits die hard.  Old Habits Die Hard is available now in stores and online.  It can be ordered online direct via Amazon.  More information on Old Habits Die Hard is available online now along with Frank DiMino’s latest news at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.frankdimino.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/Frank_DiMino

 

 

 

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Rocker’s Debut LP “Hard To Bleed” Is Hard To Hate

Courtesy:  Phill Rocker

Courtesy: Phill Rocker

Late last month Phill Rocker (yes, that’s really his name) released his debut album Hard To Bleed. The independently released album boasts fifteen tracks all of which are a good fit for any fan of big riffs and even bigger hair. From start to finish Rocker exhibits influences from the likes of Judas Priest, Poison, Ozzy Osbourne, and so many others from that bygone era of rock. There are even some old school style power ballads thrown in for good measure to round out the record. The combination of those ballads and the album’s more up-tempo pieces makes Hard To Bleed a record that is hard to hate.

Phill Rocker’s debut album Hard To Bleed is a record that is hard to hate. Yes, that bad pun was fully intended. The fifteen-song record (there is also a deluxe edition that includes two bonus songs) is so hard to hate because over the course of its roughly sixty-seven minute run time it offers rock purists plenty to appreciate what with its classic rock sound and equally interesting lyrical content. The album is anchored by the album’s up-tempo, near mid-point ‘Burning in the Fire.’ It has already been noted that the songs featured in this record boast a noticeably old school rock sound. The sound in question takes listeners back to the days of big riffs and even bigger hair. That is no different in the case of ‘Burning in the Fire.’ Rocker and company waste no time getting things moving in this song. They jump into it right from its opening measures. Drummer Brian Tichy (Something Unto Nothing, Velvet Revolver, Ozzy Osbourne) is on point in his time keeping here. The dual guitar attack of Ricardo Fernandes and Miguel Aguiar adds even more impact to the song. That is because it instantly conjures thoughts of classic Ozzy Osbourne, Scorpions, and even Judas Priest. Rocker’s own vocal delivery here boasts just as much power as those that have come before. The song’s musical side is just one part of what makes the song a solid anchor for Rocker’s new album. Rocker wrote the song’s lyrics as well as handling vocal duties. Rocker’s lyrics come across as a commentary of sorts as he sings in the song’s lead verse, “Can somebody hear this scream of mine/Is the world goin’ blind/Hard to carry on/Without wiseman guidance/Can’t see/Nothing but dreams of foregone times/Facing the final frontier/I’ve faced this road before/Innocence calms down/Before the storm/The hurt I know is true.” Later in the song’s run Rocker asks, “Will I/Who else can I call/What’s done is done/It’s written in the stars.” In examining the song in whole Rocker comes across as making a statement about staying strong even in the most uncertain times with such lyrics. Of course that is just this critic’s own interpretation. It could be completely off the mark. Hopefully it isn’t. but the possibility is there. When that possibility is coupled with the song’s forward-driving musical content, the two together really build their own fire that will spread to listeners when they hear the song for themselves. Keeping that in mind, it is clear in the end why ‘Burning in the Fire’ is this record’s anchor. It is just one of the many songs in this album that can be cited as an example of what makes Rocker’s debut album hard to hate. The ballads that are included in this album do just as much to make it worth at least one listen. That is exemplified even later in the album’s run in the form of the bass-driven ballad ‘How Does It Feel.’

‘Burning in the Fire’ is a solid anchor for Phil Rocker’s debut album. That is thanks to the combination of its classic rock-influenced sound and its equally thought-provoking lyrical content. As solid as it is in the grand scheme of the record it is only one example of what makes it a *rock* solid record. ‘How Does It Feel’ is another good example of what makes Rocker’s new album worth hearing. Unlike ‘Burning in the Fire’ this song is a classic ballad style composition. From Rocker’s own vocal delivery to Ricardo Fernandes’ gentler melody to [Brian] Tichy’s own work behind the kit, this song is a direct throw back to the power ballads of the late 80s and early 90s. In regards to its lyrical content, the song’s lyrics will have listeners just as engaged. Rocker writes in this song, “This conspiracy doesn’t help to see my destiny/Fighting this battle/I’m more than you can be/Psycho maniacs/Rule what you can/Ask for what you need/That’s where I begin/Straight to the unknown.” This comes across as someone dealing with some inner personal issues. And the song’s chorus would seem to hint even more at that as Rocker writes, “Paranoia/In a troubled mind/Agonized by a wounded heart/Self-inflicted victim/In this unfair world/Is it real/What’s going on/How does it feel to walk away/How does it feel to taste the pain/How does it feel to go away/One more day.” The song’s final verse is just as intriguing as Rocker writes about a figure suffering from a number of emotional issues that have essentially crippled said figure. It is definitely an interesting piece that is certain to leave listeners talking just as much as ‘Burning in the Fire.’ Audiences can hear the song for themselves now via Rocker’s official website at http://www.phillrocker.com. It’s just one more example of what makes this record a record worth hearing at least once. It still is not the final example of what makes the album stand out. The album’s opener, ‘Wasted Generation (In Me) is one more example of what makes Hard To Bleed hard to hate.

Phil Rocker offers quite a bit for rock purists in his debut album; so much so that the album proves rather hard to hate. That is obvious in the album’s hard rock anchor ‘Burning in the Fire’ and its polar opposite ‘How Does It Feel.’ While both songs are clear examples of what makes this record worth hearing they are not the only songs that could be cited as examples of the record’s strengths. ‘Wasted Generation (In Me),’ the album’s opener, is one more of the album’s strengths. Much like ‘Burning in the Fire’ Rocker and his fellow musicians waste little time getting things going here. There is a little bit more set up here but very little at the most. Luckily for listeners it isn’t one of those “slow boil” setups that takes its time building up to the song’s real body. Far too many bands today take that route. And it is anything but original or enjoyable. Keeping that in mind, the overall musical composition of ‘Wasted Generation (In Me),’ by itself makes the song both an enjoyable work in itself and an equally solid first impression for Rocker. The song’s lyrical content is just as important to its overall composition as its musical side. Rocker writes in the song’s second verse, “Confused and alone/Left on my own/I can’t find a place to rest/My mind’s so stressed/In between now and then/Yeah, here I am/I feel that I am always somewhere.” He goes on to write, “Come and have a look/Seek what you want/Come and have a look/Seek what you need/Come and have a look/You will find/A wasted generation in me.” The song feels, at least in regards to its lyrical content, as if it comes from the point of someone in a difficult emotional spot. It is almost as if the figure in this song is looking back on certain events of the past and comparing those events to the present, thus leading to the revelations presented here. What is really interesting about all of this is that when set against the song’s musical content there is quite a separation between the two. One would expect considering the song’s lyrical content that this song’s musical content would not have as much fire as it does. Yet somehow in its own way it proves to work just as well alongside that content. Because it does (and surprisingly so) it proves in the end why it is yet another solid first impression for Rocker and another example of what makes his debut worth the listen. Together with the previously noted songs, all three offerings show collectively that not only is this record just worth the listen but they also make this record hard to hate. They are not the only songs that could be used to prove that argument either. There are twelve other songs include in this record that could be cited in making both arguments. Audiences can hear every one of those songs for themselves when they order Hard To Bleed for themselves.

Hard To Bleed is a good first effort from Phill Rocker. The album proves this time and again throughout the course of its fifteen songs and sixty-seven minutes. From the hard rocking anchor that is ‘Burning in the Fire’ to the more melodic classic ballad style ‘How Does It Feel’ to the equally solid opener ‘Wasted Generation (In Me)’ there is plenty for any purist rocker to enjoy. That includes the other dozen songs not directly noted here. All things considered Hard To Bleed proves in the end to be a good first effort from Phill Rocker and an album that is both worth hearing at least once and in turn hard to hate. It can be ordered online now via Rocker’s official Bandcamp website at http://phillrocker.bandcamp.com/releases. More information on Hard To Bleed is available online now along with music videos, news, and more at:

Website: http://www.phillrocker.com

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

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…And So It Begins Is A Good Start For NoMara

Courtesy: Round 2 Records

Courtesy: Round 2 Records

…And So It Begins, the debut EP from NoMara is a fittingly titled first effort from the independent five-piece hard rock act. That is because the band exhibits over the course of its record that it has quite the potential. Speaking in terms of both its musical and lyrical content, it is a good fit with any of the acts currently being played across the country’s major mainstream rock radio stations. The record’s closer ‘Tesla’ is a clear example of that. With its mix of classic hair metal musical content and direct homage to the bands that made the era of big riffs and even bigger hair so…well…big, it proves to be the EP’s anchor. And ‘Cheap Talk’ with its hard rock riffs and lyrics that seem centered on the standard subject of broken relationships, it is an even more radio ready work. The modern hard-rock ballad that is ‘Broken’ could just as easily be used by any radio programmer across the country with its introspective lyrical content and flowing melodies. All three songs could each easily be used to represent the band on any mainstream rock radio station, regardless of said station’s reach. That is not to discount the remaining pair of songs that make up …And So It Begins–‘Sell Out’ and ‘Use Your Love.’ Both of those songs could be used just as easily by the band and by said stations. Regardless of which track(s) are used, it can be said that in whole …And So It Begins is in fact just the beginning for NoMara.

…And So It Begins is just the beginning for NoMara. The debut EP from this independent five-piece hard rock act proves that from its outset to its end. Every one of the five songs that make up the record’s nineteen-minute run time is as radio ready as the others. However in listening through this record, it can easily be said that ‘Tesla,’ the record’s closer is also its anchor. The four and a half-minute song is a musical love letter to the bands that made the age of big hair and even bigger riffs so…well…big. The song’s musical content makes that clear as it throws back to the sound generated by so many of that era’s biggest names including the likes of Motley Crue, Poison, and of course Tesla, thus the name of the song. The song’s lyrical content adds to the homage as front man Kelly Burdge sings in the song’s lead verse, “Didn’t have to be there/See it to believe it/It was one hell of a show/Big city nights/Arena nights/Exploding pyro/Stand in line for days/Gotta find a way I can get front row/Hooked on tasty licks/Catchin’ guitar picks/No matter where there’s room/Best get out of my way/I thank God rock rock ‘n roll every day.” The picture painted by Burdge’s lyrical talents paints such a vivid picture. It will put a smile on the face of anyone that grew up in that era when concerts were just as much about the show as they were about the band. Interestingly enough, Burdge’s own vocal delivery style makes him sound so much like so many of that veteran vocalists that he obviously grew up idolizing. That adds even more punch to the song. And it is just one more part of what makes this song such a strong, solid anchor. The song’s equally bombastic chorus in which Burdge’s band mates–John LeCompt (guitar, vocals), Thad Ables (bass), Josh Grissom (guitar), and Jack Larson (drums)–join in singing, “Just give me one for the money/Two for the show/Three for Tesla/On my radio/I got Poison in my pocket/Woman on my mind/Motley Crue-sin on the wild side/Life ain’t got to rock/Stil livin’ the crazy nights/Won’t get left behind/One for the money/Two for the show/Come on, come on/Who loves rock and roll” adds even more enjoyment to the song. And it doesn’t stop there, either as listeners will note in hearing the rest of the song. All things considered here, ‘Tesla’ proves in whole that it is a solid anchor for NoMara’s new EP and an equally solid choice for a single should radio programmers give the band a chance.

‘Tesla’ shows through its combination of musical and lyrical content that it is a solid anchor for the band’s new EP …And So It Begins, and that it is just as equally solid a choice for a single should radio programmers give the band a chance. It is just one of the radio ready songs on this record that make it in whole a recording that is just the beginning for the band. ‘Cheap Talk’ is another radio ready piece that would serve as a solid representative of the band members’ talents. That is thanks in large part to its musical content, which exhibits hard rock riffs equivalent to songs churned out by the likes of Black Stone Cherry, Hellyeah, and even to a slightly lesser extent, Pop Evil just to name a few. Again, this is in reference mainly to the song’s musical content. Such comparisons are not bad for the band either. It shows even more the band’s ability to hold its own against such bands and other more well-known acts. In regards to the song’s lyrical content, its lead verse along leads one to believe that the song would fit in just as easily with those acts as it paints the picture of being another song rooted in the standard theme of broken relationships. That picture is painted as Burdge sings, “I get the feeling/I’m being lied to/Right from the start I saw the signs/I should have listened/To intuition/Instead I fell face first.” He goes on to sing later, “You tell me you are staying/When you know you aren’t…your talk is cheap and I’m just not sold.” At one point, Burdge’s subject goes so far as to tell his unnamed target to pack up his or her stuff and leave. So considering all of this, it can be inferred that the song is in fact lyrically based in the standard topic of a broken relationship. While it is seemingly standard fare lyrically speaking, the song’s musical approach coupled with Burdge’s lyrical approach makes the song solid. It isn’t one of those oh-woe-is-me style songs that are so prevalent across the musical universe. Rather, the two elements combined paint a picture of someone going through that stage of realization of how much time and effort was wasted being with someone that didn’t care. That frustration is made so clear here. And it makes the song a work to which any listener will be able to relate. It makes clear, once more, why the song is another good addition to the band’s new EP. It is of course still not the only example of how much the band has to offer in its new EP either. ‘Broken’ is one more example of what makes …And So It Begins an interesting listen.

‘Tesla’ and ‘Cheap Talk’ are both good examples of what makes NoMara’s debut EP a good start for the band. They are just a couple of examples of what makes …And So It Begins a good beginning. ‘Broken’ is one more example of what makes it such an interesting listen. It is another good addition to …And So It Begins because it shows the band’s softer side so to speak. It opens with a beautiful, flowing arrangement featuring flowing strings and piano set against Burdge’s equally gentle vocal delivery style and work on acoustic guitar. This lasts perhaps for about ten bars or so before the band really launches into the song’s full hard rock ballad sound. That is just part of what makes the song a guaranteed hit for the band. The song’s lyrical approach adds more to the song’s interest. In regards to its lyrical content, it is that emotional breakup song. But it still is not that standard oh-woe-is-me composition. As Burdge sings in the song’s opening verse, “Daylight has faded/On you and me/Long before our time/As far as I can see/Tell me what to say to you/To bring back yesterday/Cause I’m tired of holding on/When you always walk away.” It becomes clearer that this is another song centered on a broken relationship as Burdge sings in the song’s second verse, “The only thing I have to hold onto/Is a shred of the past/Knowing how to bring you back/And how to make you laugh.” It is pretty obvious here what is being said. This could be someone speaking directly to another in a breakup, or even looking at a picture, thinking these things as he or she prepares to say them to that other person. It could even come as part of the fallout of a breakup. Regardless of before, during, or after, the emotional punch of that combination of music and lyrics throughout makes ‘Broken’ a song that will be both a favorite and a guilty pleasure among listeners and more proof of what makes not only the song but …And So It Begins in whole an interesting listen and a good start for the band.

…And So It Begins is a good start for NoMara. That is evident through both the musical and lyrical content that makes up the body of the record. That is exhibited through the old school hair metal homage that is ‘Tesla,’ the more modern rock sound of ‘Cheap Talk’ and the more emotional makeup of ‘Broken.’ All three songs are clearly radio ready material that could effectively represent the band at any mainstream rock radio station across America. That is not to discount the EP’s remaining songs–‘Sellout’ and ‘Use Your Love.’ Those songs could both be used as singles, too. Regardless of which song(s) is/are chosen it can be said of …And So It Begins in whole that this record is indeed a good start for NoMara. …And So It Begins is available now. It can be ordered online direct from the band’s official website at http://www.nomaramusic.com. The band is currently touring in support of …And So It Begins. The band’s current tour schedule includes a pair of stops in North Carolina October 22nd and 23rd in Murfreesboro and Hickory respectively. The band’s current tour schedule is available online now along with all of the band’s latest news at:

Website: http://www.nomaramusic.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NoMara-62336572326/

Twitter: http://twitter.com/nomaramusic

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