In The A.M. Delivers Message Of Self Confidence In New Single

Courtesy: Cowgirlzen Entertainment/The Label Group

Independent hard rock band In The A.M. wants audiences to take more pride and confidence in themselves.

That is the message delivered in the band’s new single, ‘Save Yourself.’ The band premiered the song and its companion lyric video Friday through v13.net. The song’s musical arrangement is a melodic hard rock composition whose heavy guitars, electronics and occasional rapping easily likens it to works from Linkin Park.

According to vocalist Alex Shimp, the song’s lyrical theme is meant to encourage audiences to not give in to what others think of them.

“This song is about people in your life trying to force you to be whom they think you should be because they think they know better for you than you do for yourself,” said Shimp. “Throughout my life, I’ve had to deal with a lot of b******* people telling me who and what to be. People who lied to me mistreated me, never respected me, and constantly took away from the amazing heart that I had as a kid. People who tried their best to manipulate me into something I didn’t want to be. And this song is me writing some of that pain out on paper and putting it into art through riffs and melodies.”

Added Shimp, “For the kids who may be going through the same experience. For the adults who may be going through a hard time in life. For everyone who gets their therapy through music.”

The song’s lyric video is a simple presentation. It features the song’s lyrics over various background settings, all of which are associated with the design of the single’s artwork.

More information on In The A.M.’s new single is available along with the band’s latest news at:

Website: https://www.intheamband.com

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

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

Life Renewed Takes On Tough Mental Health Topic In New Single, Video

Courtesy: The Label Group/Cowgirlzen Entertainment

Christian metalcore band Life Renewed debuted its latest single this week.

The band premiered its new single, ‘Vision/Revision‘ and its companion video Tuesday. The song is the band’s first new music since the premiere of its then latest single, ‘By Faith‘ more than a year ago.

The song’s musical arrangement is a heavy, emotional composition. The screams at times are likened to that of so many death metal vocalist, at others, like the delivery style of Whitechapel front man Phil Bozeman and at others still to that of Hatebreed front man Jamey Jasta. The clean vocals meanwhile create some strong harmonies. The instrumentation against those varied vocal styles make for even more interest with its own heaviness.

The lyrical theme featured in the single takes on the familiar topics of mental health while also encouraging those with suicidal thoughts to not give up or give in. Band founder Rob Volkoff talked about the song’s lyrical theme in a prepared statement.

“This single/music film is based on a real-life experience of a suicide attempt I had,” he said. “The video is bringing visually, my experience with the same person who was there for me at that moment. This song features Robert Short (Service of Shadows) on Harsh Vocals & Jarrett Booker (Eyes of Eli) on additional harsh vocals & clean vocals. Robert & Jarrett wrote the lyrics with the mindset of the struggles & hardships I have faced that I wanted to address in this song.”

“This song was written remotely without anyone being in the same room but coming together through online conversations to share this message,” added Volkoff. With the current state of the world & the experiences, everyone has had to deal with, there are more people struggling with depression, suicide, mental & physical health, stress, Anxiety, PTSD, being overworked, among others & this song visually & lyrically highlights those issues with a sense of hope I believe we all can achieve. Robert Short & Jarrett Booker both captured the emotion, intensity & meaning of the inspiration I gave them from my experiences to deliver a powerful, emotionally evoking song that we all hope has an impact on others, Just as they had an impact on me.”

The video for ‘Vision/Revision’ fully illustrates the message in the song’s lyrical theme. It does this as it presents a young man going through those debilitating thoughts of suicide, only to be saved by himself and his friend who cared enough to take the man’s words seriously.

‘Vision/Revision’ and ‘By Faith’ are both expected for inclusion in the band’s forthcoming EP, Launching From Ground Zero. The record’s official release date is under consideration.

More information on Life Renewed is available along with all of the group’s news at:

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/LifeRenewedBand

Twitterhttps://twitter.com/LifeRenewedBand

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

Hell & Hollar Premieres New Single, Companion Video

Courtesy: The Label Group/INgrooves

Independent hard rock band Hell & Hollar premiered its latest single and video last week.

The band premiered its new single, ‘Siberian Hunter‘ and its companion video Friday. The song features a heavy stoner rock-tinged stylistic approach and sound that is balanced well with a touch of 90s grunge influence for its foundation.

No information was provided about the lyrical theme featured alongside the song’s musical arrangement.

The video for ‘Siberian Hunter’ is presented in an almost video graphic novel hybrid type approach. It follows its titular character making his way through a forest and eventually meeting a wolf along the way. The result of the meeting will be left for audiences to discover for themselves.

More information on Hell & Hollar’s new single and video is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:

Website: https://www.hellandhollar.com

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

Twitter: https://twitter.com/HellAndHollar

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

Voltagehawk Gets Existential In New Single, Video

Courtesy: The Label Group Entertainment Group/INgrooves

Independent rock band premiered its new single, ‘Neon‘ and its companion video this month.

The band premiered the pairing June 9. The song, which comes approximately five months after the band’s then latest single, ‘Straight Razor,’ is featured in the band’s concept album, Electric Thunder. The album center’s on a young woman’s journey through space and time. During the course of her journey, the woman finds out she plays a pivotal role in the future of mankind.

The musical arrangement featured in ‘Neon’ is an interesting composition that blends the heavily fuzzed sounds of the stoner rock realm with an equally evident industrial metal sound to create a unique whole that is certain to keep listeners engaged and entertained. The lyrical concept that accompanies that musical content meanwhile gets somewhat existential.

It comes across as a sort of allegory about the contradictory nature of the human condition. This happens through the examination of the normalization of sex in society, and how that contradicts with how we as humans are far less accepting of ourselves. That is this critic’s own interpretation and should not be taken as gospel.

The band explained the song’s lyrical concept in a prepared statement.

“‘Neon’ is a vision of a dystopian skid row, a glimpse into the future through blurred white lines on neon-lit streets,” the statement reads. “The truth is we all have sex for money, sex for love, and sex to pass the time. In some way or another, we’re just like the woman in the song screaming in a final moment of frustration “Pay me my money and go!”, all the while fed up with whatever part of ourselves we’ve sold to get by in this life.”

The video that is used alongside the new single is meant to help translate the seeming message. Information provided about the video states: “Meet Kenzeon, a transdimensional sex worker on the Cosmic Highway just outside ‘The Land of No One.’ A vision of a dystopian skid row, she offers a glimpse into the future through blurred white lines on neon-lit streets, ripping through the fabric of space-time to be paid what she is owed. The weary version of this astral being reminds us that we have all had sex for money, sex for love, and sex to pass the time, fed up with whatever part of ourselves we’ve had to sell in order to survive the worlds we were born into.”

More information on Voltagehawk’s new single, video, and album is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:

Website: https://www.voltagehawk.com

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

Twitter: https://twitter.com/voltagehawkband

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

Crashing Wayward Takes On The Political, Economic Establishment In New Single, Video

Courtesy: Crashing Wayward

Independent rock band Crashing Wayward premiered its latest single and video this week.

The band premiered its new single, ‘Disco Kills‘ and its video Tuesday through v13.net. The song features a musical arrangement that will appeal to any guitar rock purist.

The composition presents a sound and stylistic approach that shows influences from the likes of Stone Temple Pilots, Audioslave, and even Filter. Yes, that is a disparate mix of influences, but a close listen reveals the influence of all three bands, along with many others. The song was produced by MIke Gillies (Motley Crue, Metallica, The Cult).

The lyrical content featured in the song is meant as a sociopolitical commentary, according to front man Peter Summit.

“’Disco Kills’ was lyrically written as a metaphor about the politicians/big businesses who abuse their platform, disco being the metaphor,” he said. “It speaks in sequence to the effect that Disco music had on Rock in the late 70s, but its subject is a politician/big business who is enjoying the party. How about: It’s really a modern-day Marie Antoinette “Let them eat cake” story that takes on a duel meaning open for interpretation.”

The video for ‘Disco Kills’ puts the band — Summit, David Harris (guitar), Stacey Blades (guitar), Shon McKee (drums), and Carl Raether (bass) — into an empty building that perhaps was once either a warehouse or apartment building as it performs its new single. The video was directed by Vincent Cordero for Industrialism Films.

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

Website: https://www.crashingwayward.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/crashing.wayward

Twitter: https://twitter.com/crashingwayward

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

Anaria Debuts Acoustic Take Of Its Single, ‘Leaving You Behind’

Courtesy: The Label Group

Independent rock band Anaria debuted the an acoustic take of its latest single last week.

The band premiered the acoustic take of its single, ‘Leaving You Behind‘ and its video May 14. Their premiere came more than four months after the band debuted the song in its original presentation.

The updated, acoustic take of ‘Leaving You Behind’ strips down the original work significantly. Gone are the punching drums, and powerhouse vocals of singer Jessica Jackson Salvucci in the case of the acoustic take. Her vocals are still strong in their own right while the strings featured in the original composition are more subtle in their presentation here. The heavier guitars are replaced by a more gentle sound from that aspect.

The lyrical theme presented in ‘Leaving You Behind,’ which focuses on the familiar topic of a broken relationship, becomes even more impacting in this case because of the toned down approach.

Salvucci addressed that pairing in a prepared statement.

“Anaria has always loved doing acoustic versions of our music,” she said. “Our studio work tends to be dense and jam-packed with all manner of orchestration. We like to occasionally strip away all the bells and whistles to the melody and chords. This allows us to really focus on portraying the heart of the piece and hone in on the lyrical content, too. The result is an intimate experience between us and our audience and we love being able to offer that experience in addition to a thoroughly produced work.”

The band in whole expanded on the new song and its approach in a collective, prepared statement.

“‘Leaving You Behind’ was the second single released off our 2020 album, the statement reads. “Lyrically, the song speaks to the feelings of regret in remembrance of a past lover. We wanted to strip this song down to just two acoustic guitars, some keyboard strings, and Jess’s unprocessed voice. What is left is a very raw and genuine sound that helps us to engage with the listener on a more intimate level. The video was filmed at our old rehearsal space in Manchester, NH.”‘

More information on Anaria’s acoustic take of ‘Leaving You Behind’ and its video is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:

Website: https://www.anaria.org

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

Twitter: https://twitter/com/anariaband

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

Gears Debuts New Single, ‘Game,’ Companion Video

Courtesy: The Label Group

Independent hard rock band Gears premiered its latest single and video last month.

The band premiered its single ‘Game‘ and its companion lyric video April 30. The premiere of the single and its video came more than a month after the premiere of its predecessor, ‘So What‘ and its lyric video.

As with much of Gears’ existing work, the musical arrangement featured in ‘Game’ is easily comparable to works from Sevendust. That accessible hard rock approach and sound plays over the song’s lyrics in the song’s lyric video. Those lyrics are paired with pictures of the band members performing and images of skulls.

The lyrical theme featured along with the band’s new single and video is accessible in its own right.

Front man Trip Six noted in a prepared statement, the song’s lyrical content focuses on the topic of making one’s name in the music industry.

“The most difficult thing that I have ever set out to accomplish has been to “make it” in the music industry,” he said.  “Gears has come a long way in a rather short amount of time and while I’m not sure if we will ever become “successful” in this industry so that we are able to make a comfortable living doing what we love, what I do know is that I feel most alive when I’m on that stage.:

Added Trip Six, “Watching the crowd not only enjoying the music but singing along right there with us, meeting our fans after the show at the merch table, listening to how much they enjoy our music. I love everything about it. The hugs, hearing how much our music has done for them, in some cases even saving their life. For me, that is success, point-blank. So for now, we will continue to play this game. The music will go on and not only because it’s my passion, but because of you, our FAMZ. Your happiness will always be important.” 

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

Websitehttps://www.gearsofficial.com

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/gearsofficial

Twitterhttps://twitter.com/OfficialGears1

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

Roots Rock, Country, Americana Fans Will Find Mitchel Evan’s New Album Appealing

Courtesy: INgrooves/The Label Group

Independent singer-songwriter Mitchel Evan’s new self-titled album is a welcome addition to this year’s field of new albums in the realm of country music, folk and Americana.  Released March 24, the 12-song record will appeal widely to fans of the noted genres.  That is due in part to the recording’s featured musical arrangements, which will be discussed shortly.  The lyrical themes that accompany the record’s musical arrangements work with that content to add more appeal to the album.  It will be discussed a little later.  The sequencing of the record’s songs puts the finishing touch to its presentation and will also be discussed later.  Each item noted here is important in its own way to the whole of Evan’s new album.  All things considered, the album proves to be a presentation that is worth hearing occasionally. 

Mitchel Evan’s new self-titled album is a work that fans of Americana, neo-folk and country will find an interesting addition to this year’s field of new albums within said genres.  That is proven in part through the album’s featured musical arrangements.  The arrangements in question span all three genres, which are very closely related to begin with but are still diverse in their own right.  Speaking specifically, the arrangements featured in this 46-minute presentation will appeal to fans of Evan’s more well-known counterparts, such as Bruce Springsteen, Bob Dylan, and Neil Young.  Additionally, one can also make some comparisons to works from Goo Goo Dolls.  Yes, that seems like quite the jarring contrast for the other noted but it is there.  Right from the album’s outset, ‘As Far As You Know,’ the album gives listeners something of a bluesy, southern rock vibe that itself is comparable to works from Goo Goo Dolls.  ‘Bandaid,’ which comes early in the album, is another of those works that so easily lends itself to comparisons to works from Goo Goo Dolls.  That is evidenced through the song’s collective string arrangement, guitar line, and vocals.  Much the same can be said of the arrangement featured in ‘Cancel out the Noise.’ 

Things change dramatically in terms of the arrangements as the album progresses to ‘Gotta Be A Way,’ the album’s midpoint.  The twang of the slide guitar, Evan’s own vocal delivery and the backing female vocals give this song a distinct vintage country music vibe.  The warmth in the arrangement and its sound lend themselves to visions of the old country honky tonk club of days gone by.  It is so completely unlike the other songs already examined here, and in the process manages to show Evan’s ability and talent even in this genre. 

‘Kansas City’ continues to exhibit the noted country music influence in its arrangement.  What is interesting here is that Evan’s vocal delivery style and sound here lend themselves to comparisons to those of Bob Dylan.  That in itself makes for even more interest, considering that Dylan has done some works during his career that have shown some country music leanings.  To that end, it is one more way in which the record’s musical arrangements show their importance.  That diversity and depth is clearly there.

The Bruce Springsteen comparison comes even later in the album’s run in the form of ‘Leeches’ and ‘Let Me Down Easy.’  It is not an immediately obvious comparison.  A close listen however, makes the comparison clearer.  Between these arrangements, the others notes throughout the record and the remaining works, the whole of the album’s  featured arrangements offer much to appreciate in their diversity and accessibility.  Keeping that in mind, the arrangements make for reason in themselves for audiences to hear Mitchel Evan’s new self-titled album.  They are just part of what makes the album worth consideration, too.  The record’s lyrical content makes for even more reason for audiences to hear the album.

The lyrical content featured in Mitchel Evan’s new album is important to note because for the most part, it follows one overarching theme, that of relationships.  Starting again right from the album’s opener, that theme is inferred.  Evan sings in the song’s chorus, “I was good to you/As far as you know.”  It is a short, simple line, but speaks volumes.  This is someone who is addressing another, pointing out that he tried to make a relationship work.  In the chorus’ refrain, he changes things, stating, “You were good to me,” adding “I was the good guy/But I lost the fight.”  He even asks in the song’s lead verse, “What have we done this time…Did I lose your attention or just my mind?”  This is but a sampling of the song’s lyrical content, but is enough to infer that as noted, it is a song takes on the familiar topic of a broken relationship.  The vulnerability that is displayed through his use of words is impacting to say the least.  When it is considered with the vulnerability expressed through the song’s musical arrangement, it proves to be even deeper and accessible.  It is just one example of how that largely overarching theme makes for its own appeal.  ‘Cancel Out the Noise’ is another example of the effect of the album’s lyrical content.

Evan debuted ‘Cancel Out the Noise’ in February.  He openly said during an interview about the song that it is also focused on the noted lyrical theme.

“It came to me when I was falling for someone new,” he said. “I was living in Colorado at the time, but I actually started writing the song in Richmond while I was home for a week visiting my family. This song actually first appeared on my 2018 EP, The Little Horse Tapes. I had only been single for a short while after coming out of a long-term relationship and I was hesitant to enter another. The song is about being pulled into love with your heels dug into the dirt.”  There is no need to go through lyrics here to support one’s argument.  Evan has made it clear here that once again, he has offered audiences a song whose lyrical content focuses on the noted topic of relationships.  It is yet another example of how that recurring, accessible theme plays into the album’s presentation.  ‘Lonesome Love,’ which comes late in the album, needs little to no examination.  The very title itself of that song pretty much explains its theme.

Evan asks in this  song, ‘Oh my lonesome love/Where do you hide/Show me where you hide” in the song’s chorus.”  This after already stating in the song’s lead verse, “When I finally show up/You’ll already be on your way home.”  There is even a mention of facing the music later in the song.  Considering all of this and the rest of the record’s content, the whole makes the song in whole clearly another lyrical presentation that centers on a relationship.  When it, the other songs noted here, and the rest of the album’s songs are considered together, the whole makes clear that there is one primary lyrical theme featured in this record that is accessible to any listener.  That familiarity and accessibility collectively make the album that much more appealing.  It still is not the last of the album’s most important elements.  The record’s sequencing rounds out its most important elements.

The sequencing of Mitchel Evan’s new album is so important to address because of the subtleties in the shifts in its energies.  For the most part, the album’s energies are relatively reserved throughout.  However there are some variances within the songs and from one to the next.  Those shifts are so subtle that one cannot help but remain engaged and entertained.  Case in point is ‘Lonesome Love.’  It has some very clear reserved energy, but at the same time, just as much energy balanced against that element.  The bigger picture here and throughout the album is that its sequencing ensures audiences’ engagement and entertainment just as much as the arrangements and their lyrical accompaniments.  That is because of the amount of time and thought put into the subtle changes in the songs’ energies.  All things considered, the record proves to be a record that deserves to be heard at least once.

Mitchel Evan’s new self-titled album, released last month, is a work that will appeal widely to listeners.  That is proven in part through the record’s featured musical arrangements.  By and large, the record’s musical arrangements will appeal to fans of the realms of roots rock, Americana and country.  Though there is a little rock influence to keep things interesting.  The album’s overarching lyrical theme centering on relationships and romance will appeal to fans of those all too familiar topics.  The record’s sequencing balances its more reserved energies and its higher tempo moments, adding even more appeal to the whole.  Each item noted is important in its own way to the whole of the record.  All things considered, the album proves itself to be a presentation that the noted audiences  will agree is worth hearing at least once.  Mitchel Evan is available now.

More information on Mitchel Evans’ new album is available along with all of his latest news at:

Websitehttps://www.mitchelevanmusic.com

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/mitchelevanmusic

Twitterhttps://twitter.com/mitchelevanmuse

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

The Emma Garell Band Debuts New Single, ‘Bad Intentions,’ Companion Video

Courtesy: The Label Group

The Emma Garell Band debuted its latest single last week, along with the song’s companion video.

The band debuted its single, ‘Bad Intentions‘ March 25. Its debut was accompanied by the debut of the song’s video through Ghost Cult magazine.

The musical arrangement featured in the independent rock band’s new single is a driving, guitar-centered composition. The up-tempo work is a modern rock style opus that will appeal to fans of a band, such as Garbage.

Guitarist Dylan Lawson talked about that and more in relation to the song during a recent interview.

“The sound this song encapsulates is like an amalgamation of light Bloc Party (definitely Silent Alarm era), Paramore, Garbage, and a dash of some classic rock influence thrown in mostly on the solos…like maybe some Blue Oyster Cult type beat,” he said. “There’s definitely 70’s hard rock flair on the song overall. But those other sounds kind of rest in my ears.”

Added Lawson, “It has the catchy, dancey, memorable nature you’d hear from hits by Bloc Party and Paramore, hell even Garbage. But, it also has that musician-friendly obscurity and finesse to it that still makes it stick out and simultaneously give reminiscence to the “old school rock n roll” types.”

No information was provided about the song’s lyrical theme in the news release distributed this week about the debut of the new song and video. From what one can infer from the song’s lyrics, they center on someone who is questioning the fidelity of his/her partner. Considering that the song is sung here by Garell, one would have to assume that the song is sung in this case from a female vantage point.

The ‘Bad Intentions’ video is a simple presentation. It features Garell performing the song in front of a mic as the song title runs across the screen time and again. The color changes constantly throughout the video, too.

More information on Emma Garell Band’s new single and video is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:

Website: https://emmagarell.com

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

Twitter: https://twitter.com/emmagarell

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

GATA’s New Remix EP Will Appeal To Any Goth, Industrial Metal Fan

Courtesy: The Label Group

More than two years after releasing its then latest album Alpha Bionic, independent goth/industrial band Gabriel & The Apocalypse is revisiting that album with a new EP of remixes from the record.  Released Feb. 26 through The Label Group, the five-song record is a presentation that will find equal interest among the band’s established audience base and goth/industrial fans alike.  That is due in no small part to the featured remixes, which will be addressed shortly.  The sequencing of those featured songs adds to the record’s interest.  It will be addressed a little later.   The songs’ lyrical content rounds out the record’s most important aspects and will also be addressed later.  Each item noted here is important in its own way to the whole of this record.  All things considered, they make the EP a rare case of the sequel being better than the original.  Yes, this is a discussion topic even in the music industry.

Remix records are commonplace presentations for industrial rock and metal acts.  From Gravity Kills and Nine Inch Nails, to Fear Factory and Ministry, the practice of remixing songs is nothing new.  So when it was announced that independent goth/industrial band Gabriel & The Apocalypse was going to release a collection of remixes from its 2019 album Alpha Bionic, the surprise was limited.  While the surprise was limited, the enjoyment is proving anything but.  That is due in no small part to the five-song record’s featured remixes.  Four of the featured songs are originals featured in the band’s aforementioned record while the fifth is a remix of the band’s cover of Midnight Oil’s hit 1987 single ‘Beds Are Burning.  Why these songs in particular were chosen from the original album’s 10 total songs is anyone’s guess.  That is beside the point.  What is important is that the featured remixes actually build on their source material (two-fold in the case of ‘Beds are Burning’ since that one was a cover to begin with) and improves on each song.  The band’s remix of its original song, ‘Systematic Chaos’ gives that song a completely different identity thanks to Mushroomhead founding member and drummer Rick “Stitch” Thomas.  Thomas’ “Burn It Down Remix” of the song gives this song more of a full-on industrial feel that is more akin to works from Mushroomhead and Ministry than the heavy, driving, guitar and keyboard-driven approach of the original.  What Thomas has done here to improve the song is focus more on the keyboard line in the original and really make it the center of the song.  That driving, percussive style approach from the  primary keyboard line pairs with an occasional secondary keyboard flourish and steady electronic bass drum beat to make the song just as good as its source material if not better.  It is a wholly different work from the original that ensures listeners’ engagement and entertainment, and is just one example of how the album’s featured remixes play such an important part to its presentation.   The ‘TIMELINES REMIX’ of ‘pointTHREE’ is another example of how these remixes ensure the EP’s engagement and entertainment.

The ‘TIMELINES REMIX’ of ‘pointTHREE’ stands out because while it does tend to stay more to its source material, listeners will note that it doesn’t maintain the ethereal approach of the original arrangement throughout the song.  Rather, as the remix progresses, the secondary keyboard line from the original takes center stage this time out.  What’s more, that now central keyboard line is more accented in its balance with the elements of the original.  The mix honestly gives this updated take something of a Nine Inch Nails style sound and approach that is certain to appeal to audiences of both acts.  It is just one more example of what makes the remixes here stand out.  The “(Up and Down Remix)” of ‘Electro-Mechanical’ is yet another way in which these remixes serve to make the EP so engaging and entertaining.

The “(Up and Down Remix)” of ‘Electro-Mechanical’ is a stark change from its source material.  Where the original work is grounded in its distinct keyboard line and guitar line, the remix relies more on more familiar electronic elements.  Front woman Lindey Gabriel’s vocals pair so with the light, bouncy drums and infectious keyboard line here.  What’s interesting here is that the keyboard line here actually replaces the guitar line in the original.  The rhythm is the same, but the unique effect once again conjures thoughts of Nine Inch Nails.  That aesthetic element and the subtle secondary keyboard line that joins the mix late in the song’s run pair with the steady electronic beat and vocals to make the song in general its own unique take on the song’s source material.  Keeping in mind the engagement and entertainment that this remix offers along with the record’s other arrangements, the whole of the collection proves without a doubt, the importance of the featured songs here.  They are just a portion of what audiences will like about the EP.  The songs’ sequencing adds its own appeal to the record.

The sequencing of Alpha Transendence’s songs is important because it plays directly into the record’s energy.  Just as in Alpha Bionic, this remix follow-up opens in high-energy fashion in ‘Systematic Chaos.’  Even with the change in the arrangement’s stylistic approach in the remix, the song still exhibits such a powerful, high-energy presentation.  It ensures just as much as the original record, that it immediately engages listeners, and succeeds in doing so.  The ‘pointTHREE’ remix maintains the EP’s energy, immediately following the remix of ‘Systematic Chaos.’  That is even considering the more reserved chorus sections.  The much heavier verses make for an impressive juxtaposition to those chorus sections.  The whole makes the song such an engaging work in itself that even with its slightly slower tempo, still boasts its own high energy.  That ensures even more, listeners’ engagement and entertainment.  ‘Electro-Mechanical’ keeps the EP’s energy moving with the swagger in its more up-tempo arrangement.   The band’s remixed cover of ‘Beds are Burning’ ups the energy even more with its steady keyboard line and beat.  Its arrangement here makes it sound like it came right out of the 1980s new wave movement, which is certain to appeal to a wide range of listeners in itself.  Staying on the matter of the song’s energy, it keeps the EP’s energy moving fluidly.  In turn, it ensures even more, listeners’ maintained engagement.  It is not until the EP’s closer, the “Acoustic Remix” of ‘Bleed Me An Ocean’ that the record’s energy truly noticeably pulls back.  The gentle, ballad style arrangement here is powerful in its own right.  At the same time, the general reserved nature of the arrangement is a clear stylistic departure from the rest of the record’s arrangements.  It shows just as much as at any point, how much time went into the EP’s sequencing.  Looking back through the EP’s sequencing, the high-energy start, straight through to its reserved finale shows defined crests and troughs throughout.  It shows that the sequencing was deliberate.  That deliberate effort paid off just as much as the remixes themselves.  Collectively, the remixes and their sequencing makes for even more engagement and entertainment.   Even as much as the noted items do for the record, they still are not the last of the EP’s most important aspects.  The lyrical themes featured in the songs put the finishing touch to the record.

There are plenty of audiences out there who are already familiar with Gabriel and the Apocalypse, and those audiences have likely already taken in Alpha Bionic.  At the same time, there are plenty of audiences who are less familiar with the band and its work.  To that end, if this EP is those latter audiences’ introduction to the band and its work, then the record’s lyrical content is just as important to note as anything else.  ‘Systematic Chaos’ for instance, comes across as a statement of pure disgust with the state of the world.  Given, socio-political commentary is anything but new to the world of rock.  The thing is that so many such songs take more of a plaintive approach.  In the case of the statement is less plaintive and more of a “screw it all” sense.  This is inferred right from the song’s outset (which is also the song’s only actual verse) as Gabriel sings, “I used to want to save the world/Let’s burn it down/I can see for miles, I can see for years.”  The chorus adds to that sense as she adds, “Systematic chaos, smoke and mirrors/Manipulated, calculated, hell bound, let’s burn it down/Do you feel what you say?/Do you say what you feel?”  Again, this is complete frustration with everything, and while it is a clearly angered view, the fact of the matter is that many of us get to (and likely have gotten to) the point from which this song comes.  To that end, that ability to relate to those very real thoughts and emotions will help listeners release their own frustrations.  This is just one way in which the record’s lyrical content proves its importance.   The lyrical content featured in ‘Electro-Mechanical’ does even more to show the importance of this element.

The lyrical theme that is seemingly featured in ‘Electro-Mechanical’ appears to take on the familiar topic of someone who is done with a toxic relationship.  That is just this critic’s interpretation of the content.  The inference comes right from the song’s outset as Gabriel sings, “I can’t feel/I can’t breathe/I’ll give you what you need/I can take it/I’ll fake it/You only need skin to bleed/Moving fast but standing still/A dark place turned so beautiful/Detached all my feelings/Now, I’m here for the killing.”  That mention of being able to “fake it” even despite the negative thoughts that open the verse points to someone who is putting up with a bad situation.  As the verse progresses, things change as the subject states, “A dark placed turned to beautiful/Detached all my feelings/Now, I’m here for the killing.”  Obviously the “killing” does not mean murder.  Rather it would seem to refer to the end of that bad situation, just in a metaphorical sense.  The seeming story continues in the song’s second verse, which states, “A part of me has died/Impressions liquefying/Peeling from these walls/Who will catch you when you fall?/Electro-Mechanical/I had to let you go/This wall I’ve built so tall/I’m not afraid no more to lose it all/Electro-Mechanical.”  That attestation that “I’m not afraid no more to lose it all” would seem to solidify the noted inferred statement.  It really makes it seem even more that this is, lyrically, a song that centers on someone who has ended a toxic relationship.  If in fact that is the case, then the manner in which the story is delivered is unique and powerful.  In turn, it would make the EP’s lyrical content that much more pivotal to its presentation.

As much as the lyrics in ‘Electro-Mechanical’ and ‘Systematic Chaos’ do to make the record appealing, they are just a pair of songs that meet that end.  The lyrical content featured in ‘Bleed Me an Ocean’ shows even more, the importance of the record’s lyrical content.  The song’s lead verse states, “I write at your fingertips/Beautiful insanity taking on me/I don’t mind, it’s only a lie/Just a matter of time before we blur the line.”  The second verse continues, “I know what moves the center of you/We crash and burn/Will we ever learn?/Is this all there is? Days into years/What’s done is done, still we run.”  This collectively seems to point to a relationship-based topic again.  It could very well be the wrong interpretation.  Regardless, the ability of these lyrics to generate what will assuredly be plenty of discussion shows its own importance here.  When that impact is considered along with the themes and impact of the other themes noted here (and those not noted), the whole leaves no doubt as to the importance of the EP’s lyrical themes to its presentation.  When that importance is considered along with that of the record’s featured remixes and their sequencing, the whole makes Alpha Transcendence one more positive new offering from Gabriel and the Apocalypse.

Gabriel and the Apocalypse’s recently released EP Alpha Transcendence is a positive new offering from the independent goth/industrial band.  That is due in part to its featured remixes.  The remixes take music from the band’s most recent album, Alpha Bionic (2019) and gives each song new life through the unique arrangements.  The sequencing of those arrangements adds its own appeal to the EP.  That is because the sequencing maintains the balance in the record’s energy.  The lyrical content that accompanies the lyrical content rounds out its most important elements.  It serves as its own added important element mainly for the band’s new audiences.  Its accessibility will ensure listeners’ engagement in its own right, too.  When it is considered along with the noted songs and their sequencing, the whole makes the record overall one more of this year’s top new EPs.  It is available now.  More information on Alpha Transcendence is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:

Websitehttps://gabrielandtheapocalypse.com

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/GabrielandtheApocalypse

Twitter: https://twitter.com/GATA_band

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