Tag Archives: Vinyl

Quick Artist Profile: Beach House

In 2004, Victoria Legrand and Alex Scally formed.Beach House, and what they often describe to be ‘Dream Pop.’ The duo is from Baltimore, and have a unique style that istheir own. Though they are often associated as being a couple,the two are simply friends and partners in collaboration for their music. The atmospheric slide-guitar of Alex Scally is heavily influenced by Neil Young and through films, as unique as that sounds. The duo describes their music as ‘dreamy’ and ‘droney’, but what exactly is Dream Pop? Dream Pop was first introduced in the U.K in the mid-80’s and mixes pop melodies with atmospheric passages. Along with their unique style and genre, the band is known for their dreamy and mellow stage shows. I had the good fortune to see Beach House when they opened for Vampire Weekend in Boston. Though I had not heard of them at the time I was extremely impressed with their style. I was also impressed by the spectacular light show they put on. From the multiple illuminated triangles to the wall of lights that resembles rain, I could not keep my eyes off the stage.

The duo is most well known for their songs, “10 Mile Stereo” and “Zebra”, which can be found on their 2010 album Teen Dream. With two albums under their belt already, the duo released their third album, Bloom on May 15th of this year. Bloom has gained a substantial amount of praise and recognition, which helps to give Beach House the credit they deserve. Already hitting #7 on the Billboard Top 200 and #15 in the United Kingdom, the band continues to gain praise for their latest work. As soon as the album begins, with the first song “Myth”, the album is blanketed with an atmosphere that the duo has stayed true to in their previous albums. Along with “Myth”, check out the songs “Wild”. One of my personal favorites is, “New Year”. The duo also included a seventeen-minute track titled, “Irene”. Though this track is only offered through “Album Only” on iTunes, this should entice listeners to purchase the whole album, or go out and purchase the album in hard-copy form. Beach House has also been known for being of the more predominate bands that release their music on vinyl, which truly brings their music to life in a different way. As the band looks towards their extremely promising future with Bloom, be sure to try and catch them live and to see where the future of this unique and promising group goes.

-M. Tozeski

Check Out Beach House Playing their songs  “Zebra” and “10 Mile Stereo” Live From Fuji Rock Festival 2011 below:

Advertisements
Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Aerosmith Release Their First New Album In 11 Years With, ‘Music From Another Dimension!’

Unless you’ve been under a rock for the last month, you know two huge events are happening today. One of these events is the release of Aerosmith’s new studio album, Music From Another Dimension! The other huge ordeal happening is Election Day (Get out and vote!) Yesterday the two combined when Aerosmith played a show on the front stoop of their original apartment at 1325 Commonwealth Avenue in Boston. The rally was to promote voting, but also to promote the new record which I will be focusing on today.

Music From Another Dimension! is Aerosmith’s first album of original material since 2001’s, Just Push Play. Any Aerosmith fan who has been waiting for a new album will not be disappointed with Music From Another Dimension!, but let me say if you were expecting an album like 1976’s, Rocks this is not that. Likewise if you were looking for an album like 1993’s, Get A Grip this is not the album for you. But if you are the third-party that was hoping for an album that encompasses all of Aerosmith’s best features throughout their career, then this new collection of fifteen tracks is for you.

Music From Another Dimension! starts out “LUV XXX” which features a very creepy spoken intro by producer Jack Douglas. But then the drums kick in followed by a very 70’s inspired riff. Steven Tyler’s vocals come in next, but one will notice that not only are they harmonized by Joe Perry, but also by John Lennon’s son, Julian. Coincidentally Jack Douglas was also John Lennon’s producer and one of the last people to see Lennon alive.

The second track on the album is a great song called “Oh Yeah” which is a very Rolling Stones-esque double time number. The song features horns along with loosely played guitars. But what brings the track together are the background singers and the horn section who give the track a certain depth. This track is followed by an odd song called “Beautiful” which is reminiscent of Aerosmith’s 1990’s sound. The track mixes killer riffs, spitting vocals, and sweet melody. This song is nothing like anything I’ve heard before, and the arrangement is very odd especially towards the end when it sounds like a new song altogether.

Next up is the Tom Hamilton penned, “Tell Me” which is one of my favorite songs on the album because it reminds me of The Beatles mixed with Aerosmith’s more ballad oriented material. This is especially true when it comes to the guitar solo and refrains. “Tell Me” is followed by a great track called “Out go The Lights” which is cowbell driven bluesy number featuring a great syncopated riff, and also featured a cool background vocal section. Tyler’s lyrics also great and are filled sexual innuendo and double-entendres. Just when you think the track is about to end, Joey Kramer’s drums come back in and so does Perry’s guitar, and this is when he provides a great syncopated funk driven guitar solo.

“Legendary Child” is up next, and this song starts off with a very cool and unique backwards guitar that goes into a riff that sounds a lot like Led Zeppelin’s “The Wanton Song”. Steven Tyler’s vocals follow, and the song is instantly kicked up a notch. Then the song takes an odd turn when we go to this atmospheric section. This is then interrupted rudely by Joe Perry and Brad Whitford’s monster riffage. Then another verse that is full of Steven Tyler’s usual witty lyrics kicks in.  This time the band chooses to forego the atmospheric pre-chorus section, and go straight into another chorus. This chorus is then followed by a short guitar break, and then a ripping Joe Perry solo. At the end of Perry’s solo back-masked guitars are moving in and out, and Tyler repetitively sings the song’s title till the song comes to a conclusion. This is one of the best tracks on the record.

Next up is the latest single, “What Could Have Been Love.” Now I have mixed feelings on this song. I love the melody and chorus and I can’t stop listening to the track, but I also think it is a song that was made for radio to sell units.

Whatever wrong doing I found with “What Could Have Been Love” is undone however by the next track, “Street Jesus.”  “Street Jesus” is centered on a bluesy riff by Brad Whitford who had been kicking the lick around for 15 years, but it has finally found a home on this track. To me this song would fit nicely in the bands catalog between the songs “Toys in The Attic” and the great bluesy number, “Rats in The Cellar.” What really makes the song great is how it features excellent guitar work from Whitford.

Next up is the track “Can’t Stop Loving You,” but unlike the other ballads on the album I don’t think this track is throw away track. The beginning starts off with a very Beatles-esque Mellotron intro, but then leads into an acoustic guitar driven section that is accompanied by Kramer’s steady beat. On the chorus Steven Tyler gets harmonized by Carrie Underwood who adds awesome flavor to the track especially when she takes the next verse which also features a lyrical reference to Aerosmith’s 1973 song “Mama Kin.” Underwood takes the next chorus and is nicely harmonized by Tyler. This then leads into a very Beatles-esque breakdown, but then that country flavor comes back in with the final chorus.

“Lover Alot” is the next track, and this song is another straight forward rocker that features grooving guitars and Tyler’s vocal spitting on top of the music. What gets me with this track however is Hamilton’s bass which makes this track sound super tight. He finds the perfect space in between being a rhythmic instrument and a melodic instrument. Something many bass players simply fail at.

The next track that caught my ear was “We All Fall Down” which was penned by Dianne Warren who also wrote the bands hit, “I Don’t Want To Miss a Thing.”  The song starts off with guitar, orchestra, and piano. Tyler’s vocal seamlessly floats over the top of the song. The chorus then comes in and this is when the song reaches climax especially the third time around.

“Freedom Fighter” is a Joe Perry penned song and it is also sung by the guitarist. This song is not bad or good it’s just kind of there. “Closer” follows “Freedom Fighter,” and I have to say that it is another filler track that I didn’t really enjoy.

Now interestingly enough one of my favorite tracks on the album is the very James Bond-esque Perry written track, “Something.” This track is a real rocker and features great swaggering guitar parts that sound awesome. Perry’s vocals also sound good on this track something that has always been a give or take thing for him.

The Album concludes with the song “Another Last Goodbye” which is actually a ballad I enjoyed. The track which was written by Tyler, Perry, and Desmond Child is actually the perfect mellow way to conclude the album.

Music From Another Dimension! is a great album with fifteen tracks worth of solid Aerosmith material, and now it’s time for you to make your judgement. Go out and get this album, and see why I am thrilled with it. Aerosmith delivered now it’s our time to receive.

-B. Harlow

 

 

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

West End Motel Release New Song, “Burn it Down”

Musicians are notorious for a couple of things. One of these things are side-projects. Some side projects are just god awful, but some just work. A clear example of this is Brent Hinds of Mastodon’s side project West End Motel which is a great combination of country, western, rock, and soul. The band which was formed sometime around 2002 recorded some songs over a period of seven-year, but disbanded as  Tom Cheshire and Hinds both had very busy schedules. But In 2009, the band reunited along with the addition Mike Shina for a one-off as a band called, County Hell. Instead of County Hell being a onetime only thing it truthfully re-launched West End Motel. The band recently released a track entitled “Burn It Down” which will appear on the band’s new album, Only Time Can Tell, which will be out October 30th.

“Burn it Down” is truly a great track that really emphasizes a very soul and groove oriented vibe. The song starts out with a clear sample, but this leads into a very soulful country riff. The vocals then come in with the refrain. The refrain ends quickly, and this is where you hear Hind’s uniquely nasally vocal which is doubled to give it a cool echo effect. I also enjoyed the awesome horns and walking bass lines that are prominent throughout the track. The real highlight of the song however is Hind’s guitar solo which is mixed very dominantly.

This band is great, and I can’t wait to hear the rest of their new material when it comes out later this fall. Make sure you give it a listen. I’m sure you will not be disappointed.

-B. Harlow

Check out to the song  which is streaming  HERE

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Mumford & Son’s Sophomore Album, ‘Babel’ is Finally Here

The date September 25th couldn’t have come soon enough for fans of the English folk-rock band, Mumford and Sons. But now the day has past, and it has left behind the band’s new album, Babel. After a performance of “I Willl Wait” and “Below My Feet” on the September 22nd  episode of Saturday Night Live, Babel quickly became the most talked about of the releases this week.  The album which consists of twelve tracks truthfully lives up to the hype that has been generated behind it.

The album opens up with the title track; “Babel” this song is a very upbeat banjo and guitar driven song with great dynamics in tempo. The Next track is entitled “Whispers in The Dark” this track to me was very well composed, and takes a very simple arrangement and makes it work. The third track on the album is the single, “I Will Wait.”  The guitars and banjo seem to mix together really well on this track. They only tweak I think could make the song better is if they moved the piano up in the mix more, it would have given the song a lot more movement. Vocally the song is very impressive, and contains many soaring vocals, but also many smooth parts.

“Holland Road” is the fourth track on the album, and to be truthful I think this is one of the best songs Mumford & Sons have written. The lyrics and the music throughout the song bring the listener on a journey that leads to a horn interlude that is placed perfectly in the song. This gets echoed nicely by the vocals.

“Ghosts That We Knew” is up next, and this song is very calm and less country sounding than the majority of the album. It starts with just vocals and guitar. Eventually the piano comes in with a section of harmonized vocals. This is followed by the introduction of a tenderly plucked banjo that gives nice movement to the track.  The musical arrangement of the song really helps to emphasize the lyrics and melodic structure of the song.

“Lover of Light” is next up on the album, but I wasn’t really impressed by the song as I felt it was to reminiscent of the band’s debut release.  However I did enjoy the simplistic banjo solo. The next track to take note of is the eighth track, “Reminder” which is a very melancholy number which is very simple with just vocals accompanied by guitar. The song is short but sweet, but this makes it a nice change of pace.

The next song is entitled “Hopeless Wanderer.” Lyrically this track is one of my favorites, but it is the clear emphasis on the piano that makes me really enjoy the track. It feels throughout the track as if the banjo and guitar were only there to emphasize the piano. This changes around the 3:30 mark when the banjo takes over the track.

“Broken Crown” follows, and to me has one of the nicest finger picked acoustic intros. The vocals come in next. Soon this builds and the piano and banjo join the mix, but they are not so far up in the mix that it brings down the very subdued feel of the song. This changes around the halfway when the music builds into a great section. Again this track plays with the band’s awesome ability to get soft and then loud again.

The second to last song on the album is the track, “Below My Feet.” This song is a very haunting, and plays with the traditional Mumford and Sons formula. The vocal harmonies on the track though are fantastic and add a depth to track, as does the random Pete Townsend-esque electric guitar.  “Not With Haste” closes the album, and I have to say that it did not disappoint in terms of closing the album, as it was a nice reflective piece of music that really pulls the album together.

Although very similar to their debut release, Mumford & Sons have put together an album that I’m sure will keep them out of the sophomore slump. This is a fantastic album, and a candidate for the best album of the year.

-B. Harlow

Check Out The Music Video For The Song, “I Will Wait” Below:

 

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Who Are, JEFF The Brotherhood?

When I look at a band’s name I often think that the odder they are the better. When I found JEFF The Brotherhood, I knew something would be unique about these guys, and I was correct. I was not only blown away by their songs, but also by their stripped down aesthetic and the plethora of influences you can hear throughout their music.

The duo consists of brothers Jake and Jamin Orral, and call Nashville, Tennessee home. Their father is also a musician who has writtin songs for artists such as Reba McEntire, Taylor Swift, and Lindsay Lohan. But this duo is far from those acts, and sound like a mix of classic rock, punk, grunge, and contemporary indie music. The band has released eight albums including one live record. Most recently the duo put out their seventh studio album, Hypnotic Nights, which was released in July.

One of the coolest things about JEFF the Brotherhood is that they’ve been touring the country for ten years, playing many diverse venues, ranging in size, but through it all they keep a positive attitude and a great DIY ethos. In the last two years alone the band has played over 400 shows, which averages out to about one show every other day. The duo act as if they’re ordinary dudes, and have a stripped down aesthetic, Jake even plays a guitar that is stripped down, and only has three strings.

If you want to listen to a band that just wants to enjoy life, JEFF the Brotherhood is the cure. They will blow away any pre-conceived notion of who you thought they were, and show you who they really are.

-B. Harlow

Check Out The Music Video For “Sixpack” Below:

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Down Release First of Four EPs

Today New Orleans based super group will release their long-awaited, The Purple EP. The EP which will be the first in a series of four new EPs and features six new songs that do not disappoint the listener. You definitely get the feeling Down took their time composing these track, and thus the yield is amazing. Down is a great band, and all the elements that the members bring together from their plethora of musical projects makes them so unique to all the other bands that are around today.

Let’s get down to the nitty-gritty of this album starting with the first track, “Levitation.” This song starts off with a very groove oriented riff reminiscent of something that Pantera would have put out in their heyday. Soon however you get a very melodic riff that is played over the riff, which then leads to a more Sabbath inspired riff. This is the point where Anselmo’s vocals come in, and your reminded that this is definitely a Down song.

“Whitchtripper” is the next song on the EP, and starts off with a great Pepper Keenan penned riff. This then leads into a great vocal by Phil Anselmo. On this track Anselmo sounds equal parts himself as he does a low register, Sabotage era Ozzy. I have to give it up to Keenan and Kirk Windstein who stay incredibly tight. I also have to give it up for bassist (and Down’s newest member), Pat Bruders for his incredibly tight and punchy bass playing. Drummer Jimmy Bower also puts in a great performance pounding the skins in steady time, as he helps keep the riff kings in check.

Next up is the track, “Open Coffins.” This track is classic Down, and sounds as if it belongs on 2002’s Down II. It’s truly driven by the riff, and the power of that riff caries throughout the song. Anselmo’s vocals throughout the song sound good as do Bower’s numerous drum fills.

Next up is the track, “The Curse is A Lie” which is a true doom/stoner metal song consisting of the key concepts of the genre, “Tune Low Play slow.” The song slowly builds up to a chorus that features some heavy lyrics from Anselmo including the truly haunting lines “Your days are numbered, start counting backwards.” This chorus then leads into what I’d like to call the Black Sabbath section. First of all Anselmo’s lyrics start to sound a lot like Ozzy’s, but you can definettly hear the influence around the 2:45 when a truly Tony Iommi inspired riff hits the listeners ears. Yet there’s something in it that makes it sounds uniquely like down.

“This Work Is Timeless” is the second to last track on the album, and this track reminds me more of the material off of the 2007 album, Over The Under due to its up tempo  rhythm, and yet it still keeps it’s very sludgy down trodden sound. This is followed by the final track, “Misfortune Teller” which is one of my favorite tracks off the album. This is another track where the riff just jumps out at you and reels you in. Anselmo’s vocals sound strong throughout as does Jimmy Bower’s drum work throughout. Make sure you listen to the song all the way through though.

As a big fan of Down, I was thoroughly impressed by this collection of six killer tracks. I think Amselmo, Keenan, Windstein, Bower, and Bruders all put some of their best work down. Check it out and see what you think.

-B. Harlow

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Bob Dylan Releases New Album, ‘Tempest’

Bob Dylan is an American icon, regardless of the generation Dylan’s music speaks to people. To this day he continues to produce music that speaks to the masses, and continues to tour which is amazing for being 71. Last week Dylan put out his latest album, and I have to say I’m very impressed with this collection of ten tracks.

The album starts out with the impressive “Duquesne Whistle” a gritty blues number that Dylan wrote with Robert Hunter whom also wrote and performed with the late, Jerry Garcia. The track which runs at almost six minutes starts with guitar which then gets double by piano. It really starts to pick up when the drums and walking bass line kick in. Then Dylan’s soulful and gravely vocal comes in. Next up is the track, “Soon After Midnight” which is a slower song that lyrically is great, but musically kind of boring. The next track on the record is a real rocker, and entitled, “Narrow Way.” The track is a fast blues, but you definitely get more of an early rock and roll feel. I enjoyed the track, but at seven minutes it got a bit repetitive. “Long and Wasted” years is up next, and to me it was one of the most enjoyable tracks due to the story telling nature and the way the track just had that very easy groove.

“Pay in Blood” is the fifth track on the album and to me this sounds like a Keith Richards penned Stones song. The piano and guitar groove very much like something Richards would pen, but the vocals throughout are uniquely Bob Dylan. Again, Dylan finds himself telling another enjoyable story that is much like a soap opera with the lines “You got the same eyes that your mother does/If only you could prove who your father was.” This story telling aspect and the very Rolling Stone’s like vibe makes this one of my favorite songs on the record.

Next up we find the track, “Scarlet Town” this is also another track where Dylan shows his tremendous story telling abilities. It is truly a haunting tune driven by banjo and a haunting violin played by David Hidalgo.

After listening to the great slab of work that was “Scarlet Town,” I found myself very disappointed by the next track entitled “Early Roman Kings” which musically is a clear rip off of a Muddy Waters riff, with only some added accordion and keyboards to make it sound different. This track was followed up by another track called “Tin Angel” which is driven by a small band and a prominent fretless bass that sounds magnificent and emphasizes the dramatic nature of Dylan’s lyrics.

The title track, “Tempest” follows “Tin Angel,” and to me this is an epic song about the sinking of the Titanic. Dylan’s imagery is just magnificent, and unlike most people who portray the sinking, he does not candy coat it.

The final track on the album is entitled “Roll on John,” and is a tribute to John Lennon. The song starts off with a nice progression, and leads into a verse that tells the story of John Lennon from The Quarrymen to the sudden fame of the Beatles. Dylan also makes numerous references to Lennon’s own words when he sings lyrics that came from Beatle’s classics, “Come Together” and “A Day in The Life.” The song is truly an amazing tribute to a great musician and friend.

Tempest is an amazing piece of work by Dylan. Musically Bob Dylan is on par with his best material, but when it comes to lyrics, you can see why some refer to him more as a poet than a musician.

-B. Harlow

Check Out Bob Dylan’s music video for “Duquesne Whistle” Below:

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Quick Artist Profile: Feist

I first heard Feist when I listened to the Feistodon single where she and the Atlanta-based prog quartet switched songs. Since then I looked more into her music, and I have to say I’m very impressed with her overall songwriting skills and amazing vocal ability. To be so aggressive vocally yet come across smoothly is a talent that not many people have. This talent can be seen throughout her catalogue of solo material and with her former band, Broken Social Scene.

Feist started her music career at age 15, playing in local venues around her hometown of Calgary. After a period Feist moved to Toronto and fronted/played guitar in a couple of bands. In 1999 she released her first solo record, Monarch (Lay Your Jewelled Head Down). Shortly after this she joined the group, Broken Social Scene which she rotated in and out of for a period. In 2004 she released, Let it Die. She toured behind Let it Die for three years receiving numerous awards, and in 2006 entered a studio where she recorded, The Reminder, which features one of her best songs, “1234.” In 2011, Feist continued on with her solo releases with the ironically titled, Metals.

Feist is such a talent that I feel I was lucky enough to stumble upon. Her music is so unique and vintage sounding, yet uniquely modern which leaves the listener up for a real treat.

-B. Harlow

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Progressive Music’s Past and Future

What is it about progressive music that makes me tick? Is it the musicianship? Is it the songs? Is it the respect I have for the bands? All these factors add up into a love of progressive music. Since my childhood I’ve been listening to bands like Genesis, Yes, and Pink Floyd. But it wasn’t till my late teenage years that I really developed a love for the music after I discovered Coheed & Cambria, Mastodon, and Tool. All of these bands were influence by the great prog masters, but what they did was meld it into their own style. I enjoyed this music more and more, and eventually start digging back further to bands like Rush, King Crimson, and Emerson Lake & Palmer.  I love progressive music, but I wonder what its current state is? Will it last? Will it survive into the next generation? All valid questions if you ask me.

When listening to music that came out in the early 60’s you get this real feeling of simplicity. Then by the late 60’s the music started to get more complex. It was at this time you could tell people were fed up with the same old pop bands, thus bands like Syd Barrett’s Pink Floyd and King Crimson started to emerge. Listeners wanted something more complex, something they could sink their teeth into. Bands also started writing more concept records.

Bands also were starting to use more complicated arrangements thus adding to the listener’s experience. Musicians like Genesis’ Steve Hackett were digging into odd time signatures and classical influences. Hackett also made many innovations such as inventing finger tapping.  Genesis added so many new things to progressive music like dynamics, light and shade, which made their music stand out from the other music of the time. Also making them stand out was front-man, Peter Gabriel. Its Gabriel’s odd mannerisms and terrific voice that made them stand out.

Then there was Yes.  The musicians in Yes were pretty much an orchestra composed of five people. Whether it was Howe’s nimble fretwork, or Rick Wakeman’s keyboards, Yes took the required musicianship in progressive music up a whole notch.

Then you have King Crimson. King Crimson was one of the first bands that really went overboard with experimentation. You didn’t know whether King Crimson’s music was mush or plain musical brilliance. You can listen now and see how overwhelming and innovative they must have sounded. They were one of the first bands that really experimented, and for this we can thank them.

 

One of the key things in progressive music was the album, and more importantly the concept album. The undisputed kings of the concept album are Pink Floyd and their album, The Wall. It was within that double album that musicians got to hear what a true concept was. They even followed it up with a movie of the same name. It also showed the importance of writing great songs, that even though were still progressive in nature were understandable and listenable by the general public. Songs like “Hey You,” “Mother,” and “Comfortably Numb” do just that.

One of the most important bands that needs to be mentioned when talking about progressive rock is Canadian power trio, Rush. Rush took the influences of British progressive music melded it with their other favorite hard rock bands. By doing this, Rush made a new sound that was a little heavier and more majestic than bands that came before them. Rush took musicianship and songwriting to another level that not many have reached.

In the 80’s as music was getting heavier, so did prog. Bands like Queensrÿche which was a very straight ahead metal band who eventually moved into progressive music with the release of their pivotal album, Operation Mindcrime.

When Queensrÿche started to lighten their sound they left a void in the progressive world. Thus the proverbial torch was passed again. This time it was picked up by the Berklee schooled musicians, Dream Theater. It was this combination of early prog influences like Yes mixed with the thrash metal of Metallica that made Dream Theater amazing. They opened a whole new realm and legitimized progressive music so that bands like Tool could come to the forefront.

In the early 2000’s two of the most important bands that came out were Atlanta’s, Mastodon and New York’s, Coheed & Cambria. These two bands are now holding the proverbial torch. Both of these bands took the influences of Genesis, King Crimson, and Rush and added more heavy influences. Both of these bands also started embracing the concept album that had been neglected since the late 80’s. Coheed even embraced a concept saga consisting of six albums so far.

But who will hold torch for progressive music in the future? Could it be Periphery the Bethesda, Maryland based prog-metal band? Could it be Georgia’s, Baroness? It remains to be seen, but I do know progressive music will continue on, as a very important part of our musical landscape.

-B. Harlow

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Joss Stone Releases Second Collection of Covers, ‘The Soul Sessions Volume 2’

Nine years after releasing her debut album, The Soul Sessions pt. 1, Joss Stone is back with the sequel to that collection The Soul Sessions pt. 2. The album which contains eleven tracks was recorded in New York and Nashville with a backing that included bassist, Ernie Isley (The Isley Brothers). The album is also produced spectacularly with all the tracks emphasizing Vocals, percussion, and guitar.

The album starts up with the Labi Siffre song, “I Got The…” which is a spiced up version of the 1975 soul hit. Stone added a new twist to this song with just her voice that gives it a soaring quality opposed to the original with is more rhythmic. Hip hop fans might also recognize the middle groove in this song as it was used in Eminem’s “My Name is.” Next up is the song “(For God’s Sake)Give More Power To The People” which was originally done by the soul group, The Chi-Lites in 1971. Stone’s voice stands out in this harmonica drenched mix. “While You’re out Looking for Sugar” is up next, and is definitely one of the stands out. All the instruments gel cohesively with Stone’s voice, making it a very enjoyable listening experience. The next stand out track is entitled “The Love We Had (Stays on My Mind)” which is one of the only real ballads on the album. The track builds up quite naturally into a soaring chorus where Stone shows her vocal prowess.

All eleven tracks on the record are great. I loved how Stone also picked relatively unknown soul songs. She also makes these songs her own, which is very important when you’re doing a cover because without your own spice it gets very text-book and bland. This album would make a good playlist for driving or casually hanging around the house, so take a listen.

-B. Harlow

Check Out the Studio Video of  “While You’re out Looking for Sugar” Below:

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Advertisements