News

Daktyl – Cyclical Review

When British producers manage to break away from the inexorable house music tunnel vision that so commonly plagues them, they tend to leave a respectable mark on whatever other genre lands in their crosshairs. Rich Lonbay A.K.A. Daktyl captured the attention of bass music tastemaker Diplo with his ambient, experimental brand of chill trap/midtempo/future bass, and as a result, his Cyclical LP came out through Mad Decent. The ambitious body of work ultimately marks the starting point of Lonbay’s journey to perfect his own unique sound, and as evident as his efforts to that end may be, to declare that he’s arrived at his destination is to give the album undue credit.

Play any track on the LP and you’re struck by the ripples from a sea of inspirations. The intro track, “Legacy,” features bright, effervescent synth work that slowly builds to a
See full article at We Got This Covered »

Seconds Before Landing

Seconds Before Landing: The Great Deception (Sbl)

First, let me say that, setting aside a quibble or two, this is almost certainly my favorite album of 2013. And that has less to do with any specific personnel, "song," or individual aspect of the album than it does with the fact that the old adage "they just don't write 'em like that anymore" does not apply here. This is a "progressive" album in every sense of that term, and is somehow able to both evoke the heyday of a particular genre of progressive rock (i.e., have a certain "timeless" quality to it) and to be both timely and relevant in the present.

The primary writer here is John Crispino, about whom little seems to be known except that he is a "composer and musician." (He plays drums, keyboards, and percussion, and provides most of the vocals.) He is joined by a distinguished group of musicians,
See full article at CultureCatch »

These Are a Few of My Favorite Things - Best of 2013

One of my most diversified year-end lists yet -- rock, electronica, jamband, prog, pop, R&B. I didn't really think I'd even find 10 albums that could hold my attention start to finish, and believe me, I tried to listen to most of my fellow critics' top ten titles and could barely get through most of their selections top to bottom. Okay, so there may have been some overlapping, but very little. Here are my top tens of favorite CDs and singles in some kind of non-numerical order. (Well, actually, the number of plays on my iTunes player.)

1. Laura Mvula: Sing to the Moon (Columbia)

A Mercury Prize music nominee in the U.K. and rightfully so. Slightly left of center, but accessible in a sweeping film noir soundtrack meets Nina Simone kind of way. Joyous tone poems with gorgeous vocals (and ethereal background vocals) and Gil Evans-inspired orchestral arrangements that leave you breathless.
See full article at CultureCatch »

These Are a Few of My Favorite Things - Best of 2013

One of my most diversified year-end lists yet -- rock, electronica, jamband, prog, pop, R&B. I didn't really think I'd even find 10 albums that could hold my attention start to finish, and believe me, I tried to listen to most of my fellow critics' top ten titles and could barely get through most of their selections top to bottom. Okay, so there may have been some overlapping, but very little. Here are my top tens of favorite CDs and singles in some kind of non-numerical order. (Well, actually, the number of plays on my iTunes player.)

1. Laura Mvula: Sing to the Moon (Columbia)

A Mercury Prize music nominee in the U.K. and rightfully so. Slightly left of center, but accessible in a sweeping film noir soundtrack meets Nina Simone kind of way. Joyous tone poems with gorgeous vocals (and ethereal background vocals) and Gil Evans-inspired orchestral arrangements that leave you breathless.
See full article at CultureCatch »

Six New Contenders for Top Albums of 2013

As much as I lamented the demise of quality album releases in 2013, the last few months have restored my faith in the bands releasing worthwhile long-players. The following are all contenders to make my year's end top ten list. And I suspect I'll find a few more late entries, as well.

"Back to the River" Lily & Madeleine - Lily & Madeleine (Asthmatic Kitty)

The teenage Jurkiewicz sisters hail from Indiana but boast a sparse, urban sophistication that feels more like classic NYC nu folk. Credit to their producer/arranger/co-songwriter Kenny Childers. Nary a weak track on their debut. The perfect Miley Cyrus antidote; share it with your teenage sons and daughters.

"Ode to the Summer" Syd Arthur On and On (Harvest)

Prog is back! I picked them as contenders way back in January; finally their debut CD gets a stateside release today! This young U.K.-based quartet -- guitar,
See full article at CultureCatch »

Under Construction

The Gabriel Construct: Interior City (Gabriel Riccio)

Although my older brother likes some of Genesis' music, he does have one main bugaboo about them: that their songs are often "aimless," simply going from one section to another, seemingly at random. I disagree, of course: while it is true that many of their compositions have multiple sections, often introducing different musical motifs, most of those compositions follow the exposition-development-recapitulation form of some classical music, and almost always return to and resolve at least the initial motif, if not others.

However, given my older brother's feelings, I can assume that he would not like The Gabriel Construct (though I do -- with some reservations), the debut solo project from Gabriel Lucas Riccio.

In most of the ten compositions on Interior City -- particularly the lengthier ones -- Mr. Riccio actually does what my brother suggests about Genesis: haphazardly string unrelated sections of music together,
See full article at CultureCatch »

Monks on the Move

Monks of Mellonwah: Neurogenesis (Gatcombe Music)

There are two definitions of "progressive" with respect to music. One is the progression of a band: how it develops over time, finding itself, setting its style (assuming it finds one), channeling its influences, etc. 

The other is a genre of rock music, one which I have defined as "a mindset, a conscious and deliberate approach to writing rock music based on certain elements, which usually include some or all of the following: incorporation of Western (classical, jazz et al), Eastern (Indian, Middle Eastern, et al.) and/or 'world music' (African, Latin, et al.) influences; use of non-standard (for rock) chord progressions; use of odd and/or shifting time signatures; use of non-standard (for rock) instrumentation (from sax, flute, or violin to sitar, bagpipes, or African percussion); an 'orchestral' (i.e., scored) approach to arrangement; extended compositions, often including extended instrumental passages; virtuoso musicianship,
See full article at CultureCatch »

Best of January Music - Concerts, Leftovers, Prince

It's inevitable that I miss out on some terrific music and culture every year. The sheer volume of releases seems to increase every year, and the lack of time to listen to everything, the recommendations of fellow critics and friends, well, there's just so many hours in a day. Here then are some things that I finally got around to ingesting in the last few weeks. Even caught a few live shows in between all of the mounting work. And if that wasn't enough, a killer new tune from His Purple Badass - Prince! 

Syd Arthur On An On (Dawn Chorus)

Prog is back! This young U.K.-based quartet -- guitar, violin, bass, drums -- borrows more from Gentle Giant than from the sound of its hometown of Canterbury, i.e., bands such as Caravan, Soft Machine, Egg, or Gong. I've not enjoyed a progressive rock record this much
See full article at CultureCatch »

Anathema – Weather Systems Album Review

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Website: www.anathema.ws

Facebook: www.facebook.com/weareanathema

Release date: 30th April

One of the best albums to be released in 2010 was Anathema’s We’re Here Because We’re Here. Fact. What’s that? No, it wasn’t? You’ve obviously never listened to it then. Here we go.

The album was on a many album of the year list and it was no surprise, really. The textured layers of musical arrangements; delicately glorious and invoking vocals which twisted, turned, touched and soared; the impending doom-esque, apocalyptic yet undeniably beautiful connotations of each track’s layout and content; and the complete musicianship of the album, which left it feeling as a gigantic, empowering, towering body of work resulted in the album hitting hard with anybody who took a listen; be it fellow musicians, critics, or even just music fans who took the time to
See full article at Obsessed with Film »

Klone – The Eye Of Needle Album Review

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Release date: 26th March

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Klone/133065049048

Website: www.kloneband.net

Progressive metal is a genre that’s been explored and abetted by plenty of bands in recent times: most notably the big names such as Isis, Mastodon, Pelican and Tool have arguably had the biggest impact on the genre. But there are other bands as well, that may not have had as big an impact but have nevertheless done the rounds and have shown their take on the genre and have delved into it. Even though these bands are small, they still make a difference – they may be a young musician’s favourite band and therefore that musician could go on and form a band of his own and carry the torch instead. A prime example of a band like this is Sikth, who are one of the most revered bands in the genre.
See full article at Obsessed with Film »

Radio 66.6 More Maniacal News from the Music World

Welcome back to Radio 66.6! On tap this week we've got another dose of music news for you cats. If you have a tip, feel free to submit it. Be sure to check back every Monday to stay up-to-date on the latest music headlines.

News

Killswitch Engage have confirmed that former vocalist Jesse Leach has re-joined the band, following the recent departure of frontman Howard Jones. "Truth be told, Jesse blew us away in auditions," says the band. Read their statement here.

Deftones bassist Chi Cheng has been in a coma since a car accident in 2008, but he is slowly recovering. As of this week, Cheng can now lift his leg by request. Watch a video of the progress here. We wish him a speedy recovery.

Bassist Matt DeVries has left Six Feet Under to pursue other musical endeavors. DeVries has been touring with the band since last year. His replacement
See full article at Dread Central »

Antlered Man – Giftes 1 & 2 Album Review

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Every now and then you to get to listen to an album that is a real breath of fresh air in today’s often stagnant music scene. Allow me to introduce you to Antlered Man, a London based four piece about to release their debut album, Giftes 1 & 2. To get an idea of the Antlered Man sound, take one huge dollop of System Of A Down, throw in the scuzzy basslines of The Melvins and Neurosis, add a bit of grunge, a bit of Porcupine Tree-esque prog and top it all off with a Mike Patton garnish. Delicious.

Having carved their teeth on the live circuit with spots supporting Radio 1-botherers Lower Than Atlantis and post-rock crew And So I Watch You From Afar, the Antlered Man guys are poised on the verge of something great, and whilst they won’t take on the world by a long shot,
See full article at Obsessed with Film »

2011 Grammy winners: Lady Antebellum, Lady Gaga, Eminem, Arcade Fire win big

  • Pop2it
The 2011 Grammy Awards were big for the ladies -- country trio Lady Antebellum took home the most awards with five, while Lady Gaga earned three. Eminem had two honors, but Alternative Rock group Arcade Fire won the coveted Album of the Year.

Here is the full list of winners:

Album Of The Year

The Suburbs -- Arcade Fire

Recovery -- Eminem

Need You Now -- Lady Antebellum

The Fame Monster -- Lady Gaga

Teenage Dream -- Katy Perry

Record Of The Year

"Nothin' On You" -- B.o.B Featuring Bruno Mars

"Love The Way You Lie" -- Eminem Featuring Rihanna

"Forget You" -- Cee Lo Green

"Empire State Of Mind" -- Jay-z & Alicia Keys

"Need You Now" -- Lady Antebellum

Best New Artist

Justin Bieber

Drake

Florence & The Machine

Mumford & Sons

Esperanza Spalding

Song Of The Year

"Beg Steal Or Borrow" -- Ray Lamontagne, songwriter (Ray Lamontagne And The
See full article at Pop2it »

Buzz In: What's the Best Music Festival You've Been To?

The Coachella Music and Arts Festival just announced their 2010 lineup. Jay-z, Muse, and Gorillaz are serving as headliners, but the list of supporting acts is just as noteworthy with everyone from LCD Soundsystem to The Dead Weather to Phoenix. The big event isn't until April 16-18, but I'm already trying to figure out if I can swing it. I've been going to the Treasure Island Music Festival for the past three years, and it's only continued to get bigger and better over time. But Jay-z? I would love to see him at Coachella. My personal favorite festival experience was when I caught him at All Points West last year. It rained for most of the day, so the entire crowd danced in the mud to Vampire Weekend and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. By the time Jay took the stage to close out the night, people went nuts. I was caked
See full article at BuzzSugar »

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