Tag Archives: New Music

SoulandJazzandFunk Review: Cornell “CC” Carter “That Feelin'” Single

23 Apr

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For the past few years San Francisco’s CORNELL CARTER (who sometimes just works using his initials “C.C.”) had made himself plenty of friends in the soul community. The one time top session singer (he’s worked with people like Ray Charles, James Brown, The Whispers, The Temptations, Natalie Cole, Kool and the Gang and most recently Narada Michael Walden) really took off with his long player ‘In The Moment’ from which a series of well-crafted singles and their remixes scaled the credible soul charts.

The good news is that CC is putting the finishing touches to a new album – ‘One Love’ – due June/July. Cornell says it’s his homage to the world of classic soul, R&B and jazz, but in the meantime there’s a new single on the way. ‘That Feelin” will be the album’s lead track and though it’s not officially available till April 27th, previews reveal a tasty, insistent modern soul beater. Cornell is in great vocal form (remember, the man has pedigree!) and the vibe and groove are bob on…. so they should be! The tune was co-written and produced by UK muso Morgan Howell, better known, of course, as ‘Soulpersona’…. and if anyone knows the modern soul groove, then it’s Morgan H! It’s all looking good for that new long player!

 

For more information about CORNELL “CC” CARTER or upcoming tour dates, please visit CC’s website and social media pages via http://www.cc2000music.com

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US Review: Unknown Hero “In My Head”

3 Apr

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unknown hereo in my head

Unknown Hero

In My Head

Review by Gary Hill

It would be pretty easy to lump this in with a lot of modern pop music and electronic dance music. Clearly this shares a lot of territory with that kind of sound. However, this album is much more creative than the bulk of those genre. There is almost a progressive music vibe here, and the science fiction angle to the concepts bears that out in definite ways. I like this set quite a bit. Yes, the vocals are processed. I’m not a big fan of that in general. For the most part here, it really works, though. This isn’t necessarily my kind of music, but there is plenty here to pull me in despite that. I would imagine that people who are really into this kind of stuff would really love it.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2018  Volume 2 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Be Alright (ft. Kate Wild)
An intricate acoustic guitar section opens this. The vocals enter after a bit, and we’re in more of a processed kind of electronic pop song. This is a bit on the odd side, but in a good way. That makes it a bit unpredictable. There are powerful moments, jazzy elements and more here. There are symphonic elements at play, too.
Monsters in My Head
I dig the trippy electronic music vibe on this. The vocals are a bit over-processed for my tastes, though. While the music built around a modern pop element, there are symphonic sides to it, hard rocking ones and more. This is definitely away from the norms.
Her Name
The modern pop sounds are still present on this, but this comes across more like an electronic space music type of piece. This could almost qualify as progressive music.
A Minor 2125
There are some particularly pretty elements at play here. This feels like a modern classical piece in a lot of ways. I think that’s the point, given the title. There are some non-lyrical vocals on this, but otherwise it’s an instrumental.
Hero Beware
I really dig the electronic groove on this piece. The extremely processed voice at the onset is designed to sound artificial or alien and does so in style. This has some cool melodies and energy. There are some computer type vocals later in the track, and overall this is very trippy and space-oriented.
One More Day
With both male and female vocal loops at the start, this is a trippy kind of modern jam. This is more of a hip hop kind of piece as the main vocals (still processed) enter. This is creative and dramatic.
Make It Happen
The modern pop music groove on this works quite well. I dig the texture and vibe on this number.
Dance
As you might guess from the title, this is electronic dance music. It has a cool groove and is rather unusual as the genre goes. It has some cool atmosphere.
Keep Moving Me
I love the funky guitar sound that opens this number. It eventually shifts out to another cool electronic groove. There is definitely a healthy helping of fusion the mix, though.
Going for a Ride
Another classy electronic pop song, the rhythmic groove and keyboard textures on this are both great. This number has a few vocals, but is mostly instrumental.
Ask Me
There is a lot more of a hip hop groove to this piece. It is cool, but not a highlight. I do like the vocals on the piece quite a bit.
Hero’s Groove
Somehow there is a bit of a James Brown vibe to this. There is a lot of old school soul music sound merged with more modern elements on this piece. Like a lot of the music here, there are a few vocals, but it’s mostly instrumental. I suppose this one does qualify as electronic dance music more than it does anything else.
Close My Door
There are a lot more vocals on this piece. The number is very electronic, but also quite soulful. It has a cool groove and vibe to it.
Be Alright (Instrumental)
Some cool acoustic guitar work opens this. The electronic music enters as that continues, bringing drama and more layers of sound. There are some vocal loops on the track, despite the parenthetical. I suppose they are used more as instrumentation, though. I like this version of the cut much better than the one that opened the disc. I just wasn’t all that crazy about Kate Wild’s vocals.
Monsters (Instrumental)
Here we get another instrumental take of one of the cuts from the earlier in the set, but this time the title gets shortened, too. Again there are some vocal bits as loops on this take. I like this version quite a bit, but I think I prefer the original version.

 

For more information about UNKNOWN HERO and the IN MY HEAD release, please visit the Unknown Hero website and social media pages via www.unknownheromusic.com.

 

To order IN MY HEAD from iTunes please visit https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/in-my-head/id1274692222 or http://smarturl.it/unknownhero

 

To order IN MY HEAD from Bandcamp please visit https://unknownhero.bandcamp.com/

 

unknown hereo in my head

Canada Review: Unknown Hero “In My Head”

19 Mar

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For more information about UNKNOWN HERO and the IN MY HEAD release, please visit the Unknown Hero website and social media pages via www.unknownheromusic.com.

 

To pre-order IN MY HEAD from iTunes please visit https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/in-my-head/id1274692222 or http://smarturl.it/unknownhero

 

To pre-order IN MY HEAD from Bandcamp please visit https://unknownhero.bandcamp.com/

 

unknown hereo in my head

 

Germany Review: Birdseed “Not Out Of Time”

14 Mar

Birdseed / Not Out Of Time – EP Review

Artist: Birdseed Label: Bird Records Music style: Pop Rock

Birdseed - "Not Out Of Time" - vinyl EP review 

Funnily enough, the band Birdseed from San Francisco, California was formed by middle-aged hobby musicians, who had met at school events of their descendants. After finding out that each other’s favorite hobby is the music, a band was started. The combo released from the end of 2015 a few digital singles, which were now summarized on the EP present to me.

The essence of the five tracks in total can be compared to the Fleetwood Mac sound in the early to mid-seventies. Cool Pop / Rock, so to say, who benefits from a clever groove and a strong lead vocalist. The title song “Not Out Of Time” starts the journey pleasantly rocking and the voice of Kerry Reed Landreth has that certain something that is so eminently important for every front man / woman. The track is very harmonious, variably arranged and loosely flaked over, which makes him a first winner. “Next Trip Around The Sun” starts off with an e-piano sound before the notable vocals take over the scepter. The ingredients mentioned above are also added here and make this number a listener.

With inviting guitar sound and piano, “I Want You To Know” starts the second act. Musically maybe not the best track on the disc, which is the strong text (the mother’s declaration of love to her child, probably not many years later can really understand) will be made up for. Background is probably that Kerry Landrethdiagnosed with incurable breast cancer a few years ago, she wanted to leave a statement here, so to speak. The shortest song of almost three minutes is called “We Can Do It” and builds again on a really cool groove. This works and harmonizes wonderfully with the vocals and the very positive or optimistic lyrics. The unfortunately last title “More Than I Needed The Truth” keeps the quality quite relaxed and invites you to enjoy the complete work “Not Out Of Time” right from the beginning.

Both the band Birdseed and (especially) the frontlady Kerry Reed Landreth can only wish to spend a lot of time to music and new recordings, because the present (on vinyl quantitatively limited) “Not Out Of Time” makes a great mood and goes splendidly into the ear. Relaxed music with profound lyrics, which at no time lead the listener to the uncomfortably sad feeling trail, but rather powerfully forward looking to convey an uplifting feeling.


Line-up Birdseed:

Brian Hetherington (keyboards)
Peter Landreth (saxophone)
Jamie Goodyear (guitars)
Scott Bell (drums)
Lane Murchison (bass)
Mason Morfit (guitars)
Kerry Reed Landreth (vocals)

Tracklist “Not Out Of Time”:

Side 1:

  1. Not Out Of Time (3:48)
  2. Next Trip Around The Sun (4:09)
Side 2:

  1. I Want You To Know (4:53)
  2. We Can Do It (2:56)
  3. More Than I Needed The Truth (3:54)

Total Time: 7:59 (Side 1), 11:47 (Side 2), Release Date: 2017

 

 

 

Featured on iTunes Reggae Pre-Order page: I-Octane “Love & Life”

9 Mar

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Congratulations to I-Octane! Click here to pre-order now!

 

 

US Review: Acting Natural “Acting Natural”

2 Feb

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Acting Natural

Acting Natural

Review by Gary Hill
If you take one look at the cover to this EP you will have a good idea of what the music is like. This group’s sound is based on the pop rock of the 1960s. Think “Beatles,” but it goes beyond that, too. These songs are catchy and really feel classic in nature. This is a talented bunch of musicians who really do a great job of creating strong pop rock music. I heartily recommend this to anyone who thinks that the 1960s sound is long gone. You will feel right at home with this one.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2018  Volume 1 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
The One
This is a classy tune. It’s part Beatles, part The Knack and all cool. I love the little bass led break and the psychedelic vocal bit that follows. An organ adds some retro texture to the segment that comes after that.
Nicole
A breezy balladic cut, this still has a lot of that classic rock texture. It feels a bit more contemporary, though. This is timeless and classic in sound. The vocal arrangement is great, as is the whole smooth groove of the piece.
Pairadice
A bit more rocking, this has a lot of that early Beatles vibe at its heart. This has just a bit of a funky element in some ways, too. This is fun.
Bloom
A balladic tune, this is another great bit of classic pop rock.
Early Morning
This cut really feels like something John Lennon would have done post-Beatles. It’s a melodic piece that skirts the ground between rocker and ballad.
Missed the Train
More of a rocker, this is catchy and classic in tone. I really dig the instrumental section on this. The guitar solo is one of the tastiest here.

 

Acting-Natural-Twitter-Banner9.22

Belgium Review: Acting Natural “Acting Natural”

21 Dec

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http://www.musicinbelgium.net/pl/modules.php?name=Reviews&rop=showcontent&id=9003

ACTING NATURAL – Acting Natural (EP)

Translated:

Three 22-year-old men meet one day in Tampa, Florida. James David Maney (bass) is around the corner, Jesse Leonard (drums) was born in New York and Eric Carnevale (guitar and vocals) was born in Hartford, Connecticut. The circumstances of their meeting were not exposed to us but one thing is certain  : the day these guys decided to make music together under the banner of their group Acting Natural , the music made a good deal.

I speak here of music in general and not of a kind of rock in particular because this trio of Acting Natural is simply federating between the styles and the generations of music lovers, with its rock one could not more natural and sincere. If they called themselves Acting Natural, it was because these three fellows knew what they were doing and what they were.

Including in their look, which we see on the cover of their first EP  :dark suits, black ties, neat haircuts although a bit long. Well, that does not remind us of the Beatles? Exactly, it will be question here of the four of Liverpool, which exerted a huge influence on the young people of Acting Natural. It’s not for nothing that bassist JD Maney holds a Hofner in his hands on the inside sleeve of the record, while Eric Carnevale has a Rickenbacker guitar in the paws, just like George Harrison’s.

The first song of the EP slips into the boots of the Fab Four and reaches a level of quality close to perfection, in the vein of the composer genius of the Beatles. From the first measurements of “The one”, we already have the chorus in mind, we are carried away by this rock slightly garagiste finesse and clarity, literally impeccable. This title has all the finery of a huge hit, although it was the song “Pairadice” that got the favor of the American public in the digital charts, with more dancing intonations to the Red Hot Chili Peppers, late era.

After a first song of this caliber, the people of Acting Natural are expected at the turn, ready to be worn at the top of the maximum score if their EP remains entirely on this line. However, it will deplore a small loss of initial flamboyance on the following songs, the group simply remaining very good and endearing on the beautiful ballad “Nicole”, from a luminescence all McCartneyenne on “Early morning” , captivating on “Bloom”and remarkably psychedelico-garage to the Charlatans (those of the Sixties, not the English of the Nineties) or to the Buffalo Springfield on the last piece “Missed the train “ , second best title of this half-dozen.

It is therefore a first bluffing business card that these ephebes slip us under the door. A little more maturation and a gradual detachment of the shadow of the Beatles in favor of the acquisition of a more personal style will undoubtedly Acting Natural a leading group in the new generation of rockers of the future.

François Becquart
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