Rock

Anarchy Reigns- “Liars” Review

Political music has always been a thorny beast, a style that perpetually borders on didactic preachiness, as acts from Woody Guthrie to Billy Bragg and Rage Against the Machine have all discovered in their time. The only way to avoid this danger is to skirt the topic elliptically, as in Thom Yorke’s “Harrowdown Hill”, to pluck out a random example. The aptly named Anarchy Reigns, for better or worse, instead cut straight to the chase, with “Liars” stating immediately and emphatically that Tony Blair and George Bush should be prosecuted as war criminals.

Regardless of whether or not you think this would be justified, it’s difficult to deny that Anarchy Reigns lack particularly scintillating political insight when it comes to this topic. Although in fairness it’s nigh-on impossible to cram all the nuances of such a sprawling geopolitical debate into 4:40 of chugging riffs, “Liars” is a hopelessly general piece of sloganeering vaguely deriding “promises made but never kept” and that “money’s what you want”, over numbingly predictable low-resolution images of burning oilfields and placard-waving protestors in the video.

On this basis, “Liars” stands or falls on its music, a thudding mass of stocky hard rock falling somewhere Alice in Chains and Judas Priest. Competently played and produced, Anarchy Reigns’ name nonetheless contrasts sharply with their musical conservatism as they blithely skim the book of rockisms, from Iron Maiden-esque harmonised guitars to the blasted power chords of the chorus, and even a squealing shred solo towards the end. A political diatribe as almost antagonistically unremarkable as it sounds. CO

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Listen here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dPpwB8LNPCs

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Dance, Dream-Pop, Pop, Singer-songwriter

Olisha’s Throwback Pop Is Your Next Obsession

 


 

 

The artist Olisha is making it known that her music will push the boundaries of cultural guidelines.

Her pop music is a culmination of all of her influences and favourite artists that she listened to when she was younger.

Olisha is based in South Africa, however has gained traction from all kinds of places around the world. Having massive support from Asian communities in other countries such as the UK and places in Europe.

 

 

 

Olisha has also been paid compliments from the likes of Rishi Rich, a well known producer, stating “ Lovely voice. Nice lyrics. Lots of depth”As well as having Universal Music SA Rep saying “Indeed a fine voice”

Her new single ‘Strangers’ is a new take on some of the classic artists such as Ellie Goulding and Taylor Swift.

Check it our now:

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/olishanaicker/
Facebook: www.facebook.com/olishanaicker
Twitter: www.twitter.com/olishanaicker
Instagram: olishanaicker
Website: www.olishanaicker.com

 

 

 

life influences and creative thoughts play a major role in my writing process of my songs

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Blues, R&B, Rock, Soul

Crack Of Dawn Put The Soul Back Into 2017 With New Release

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Once every blue moon, a band comes along that perfectly encapsulates what a genre is supposed to be about, and Crack of Dawn do exactly that. Honing their craft over the last 40 years, the band have reached a new height in their career with the release of their latest album and single ‘Spotlight’.

Introspective, honest and flavoured with the essence of ParliamentEarth Wind & Fire and Marvin Gaye, the album is a welcome trip through the old worlds of soul and funk, flavoured with a contemporary edge that wouldn’t be out of place up against some of today’s biggest R&B hits.

Listen to new single, Spotlight, here: https://soundcloud.com/user-956988938/8-spotlight/s-NwcPC#t=11:09

 

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Like pouring moonlight in one ear and sunshine into the other, this is true soul and funk music, performed by a band at the height of their powers playing their own instruments and bringing the glories of their past to the present day.”

Keep up with Crack of Dawn here:

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SoNzxEP5sJc

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

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/crackofdawnofficial/?hl=en

Website: https://www.crackofdawn.ca/ 

 

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Blues, Pop

Hunter- “So Gay” Review

Billed modestly in press releases as “The greatest gay anthem of all time?”, “So Gay” is the latest offering from Tanzanian singer Hunter. Raised to Indian parents in the former capital of Tanzania, Dar es Salaam, an environment in which homophobia is governmentally sanctioned, it’s tempting to read “So Gay” as less of a timid emergence from the closet as a cavalry charge into Judy Garland’s swimming pool.

The track surprisingly eschews the Vengaboys-esque glitzy tat of many songs self-consciously styling themselves as gay anthems in favour of a measured, bluesy stomp, complete with bluegrass ornamentation and twanged slugs of walking Double Bass. Hunter works in his Indian heritage with blares of Bollywood brass, and unorthodox vocal processing in the chorus spools his voice into a digitised babble.

Vocally, the singer has apparently spent several decades gurgling battery acid in Tom Waits’ diaphragm, gnarling his voice into a wizened growl somewhere between a chain-smoking Genghis Khan and Moe from the Simpsons, which lends a delicious incongruity to his opening salvo “You think I’m weak, a fairy boy?” Although dealing in didactic and hackneyed gay-is-OK platitudes that are readily available in countless other songs, there is a wry playfulness to Hunter’s drawled instruction to “Never mess with the gays/Have a heavenly day”, and his impish awareness of his own daftness in his gruff boasts that “Your girlfriend wants me, sister too”. Although advertised as “the leader of an LGBT revolution”, he might have to settle for charmed bemusement and polite applause for now. CO

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Listen here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VOyS3cF_zQA&sns=em

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experimental, Folk, Singer-songwriter

From Leeds to Tokyo – A Harpists Tale

A beautiful soundscape that takes you on a real trip through time and the imagination, Julia Mascetti’s In Bloom is an auditory treat full of intrigue and mystery from beginning to end.

Listen to a live version of her track In Bloom here:

Combining everything she learnt as a music student in Leeds with her more recent experiences living in Tokyo, the song is a real mish-mash of culture and atmosphere that is a treat to listen to. For fans of Kate BushMarina & The Diamonds and Joanna Newsom, the track builds in a theatrical, clever way, creating a haunting, spidery atmosphere that wouldn’t be out of place in a grainy, art house film. Her use of traditional, Japanese sound to decorate the mix is also really effective and has you listening to every second trying to work out what exactly it is that’s going on!

The end result though is something that is truly unique, emotive and haunting and showcases the storytelling of someone who truly loves and respects their craft

Keep up with Julia’s journey here:

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/juliamascetti

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

Twitter: https://twitter.com/JuliaMascetti

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/juliamascetti

Website: https://tokyoharp.blog

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Alternative, Indie, Pop, Rock

Everything Everything- “A Fever Dream” Review

In 2015 Everything Everything released a superbly inventive pop album entitled “Get to Heaven”, which received infuriatingly little attention and soon sunk back into the mire of quiet, docile reputability that seems so oddly unbecoming of the band. This was obstinate, often luridly colourful and wryly brazen music that didn’t belong in the back lanes of British “indie”, even though the lumping of the band into this category at all strains credulity. After the opulent blowout of “Get to Heaven”, “A Fever Dream” feels strangely like an incidental epilogue, irrespective of its contents. If their last album didn’t have the requisite boldness to break them, what will?

The band don’t seem to have an answer either, merely dimming the technicolour glare of “Get to Heaven” into muted blacks and oranges, Dante’s inferno via grainy polaroid. “A Fever Dream” is aptly named, a murkier and subtler work that eschews the punchy bombast of their previous albums in favour of more uncertain, introspective tones. “Good Shot, Good Soldier” emerges from beige aimlessness into a weary, rotating grandeur, while “Run the Numbers” buries a superb vocal melody beneath a down-tuned riff and Tom Morello-aping solo. As always, the unusual intonation and dynamism of Jonathan Higgs’ vocals dominate, as he gently wrings sympathy from the likes of the tender “Put Me Together”.

Despite the floaty moodiness of many of the tracks, much of the songwriting here is noticeably more conventional. “Desire” bludgeons its listener into submission with dreadnought synths and the belted brashness of its chorus, although it redeems itself with a superb bridge. Some sort of newfound fuzzy rockism tramples the intricacy of “Big Game”, with a dash of Rush or even Dream Theatre slashed into the proggy riffing of “Ivory Tower”. Although perhaps momentarily diverting, the allure of Everything Everything is their genre-bending and oddball vim, and they are far more unremarkable as a conventional rock band.

Unsurprisingly, there are scattered moments of transcendent beauty here, such as the swell of brass midway through “Good Shot, Good Soldier”, the complex arpeggios “Big Game” breaks into around the 2-minute mark or the entirety of the enveloping stateliness of “New Deep”. However, a faint air of anti-climax pervades the album, which was perhaps inevitable when it was tailing the cocksure cohesion of “Get to Heaven”. For the first time in their career the band feel suspended in aural stasis, treading water, with little here that they haven’t already attempted elsewhere. Unsure of how to progress, they have concaved slightly into the (by their standards) conventionalism of their second record, “Arc”. It’s a real pity they took the rather self-consciously “credible” path on “A Fever Dream”, because there’s a phenomenally strange pop band in there somewhere, nibbling at the walls. CO

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Listen here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LR3nXuBwGcI

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Pop, Rock

Weezer- “Pacific Daydream” Review

The Beach Boys. The Doors. The Smiths. Steve Ray Vaughan. Frankie Lymon and the Teenagers.

Whether these references, liberally scattered throughout the album, are simply intended to cushion the inevitable scorn of Weezer’s fanbase towards the work billed as the band’s foray into pure pop, or whether they betray a deeper sense of nostalgia and loss, is the central intrigue of “Pacific Daydream”. For all its breezy hooks and Pro Tools sheen, a wistfulness and melancholy slink beneath the surface of the album. With its members well into their late 40s and early 50s, Weezer is an ageing band, and one that seems acutely aware that this may be its last comically futile gasp at pop viability, even if it is little more than an asthmatic wheeze. To be absolutely clear, “Pacific Daydream” is not going to produce hit singles, regardless of its tracks’ commerciality or lack of it. Just as Linkin Park’s “Heavy” didn’t catapult them into the hit parade, “Feels Like Summer” or, heaven forbid, “Beach Boys”, will not beckon Rhianna guest features and VMA glitz. It’s just not going to happen. But I digress.

Given that chart hits seem out of reach, “Pacific Daydream” is worryingly only readable as part of the Weezer canon. Though far from the band’s first venture into squeaky-clean pop—there’s the scrubbed-from-the-record “Raditude”, the not-as-bad-but-still-embarrassing “Hurley” and arguably even “The Green Album”—it’s their most overt and fully-realised. However, despite the cosmetic stylistic revamp, Rivers Cuomo’s old lyrical themes quickly resurface: loneliness and confusion, societal otherness, a childishly absolute faith in the wonders of love. Potentially jarring references to romantic longing and summer at the beach are somehow acceptable from Weezer. At this point, midlife crisis has become their house style.

Although they have dabbled in electronic pop—2009’s nightmarish “Can’t Stop Partying” looms ominously into view—“Pacific Daydream” is far more Train than Avicii. Surprisingly, the album often gets away with its glib, blustery commercialism thanks to the sturdiness of its tracks: “Weekend Woman” is as good a pop song as the band have ever recorded, and “Sweet Mary” is a lush evocation of both vintage Weezer and the ‘60s Californian harmonies they incessantly fetishize. Even “Feels Like Summer”, once the antiseptic cleanliness of the album has been acclimatised to, is a punchy, effectively constructed track.

However, what is most pervasive is a sense of dislocation from modern musical trends, and society generally. Allusions to this abound, from “It’s a hip-hop world” on “Beach Boys” to “You gotta choose between the internet and me” on the finger-picked “QB Blitz”. However, despite risking down-with-the-kids desperation, Weezer’s submersion in earnest poptimism feels far less incongruous than it should; the band have always written pop hooks, and their lovelorn sincerity slots right into the pop vernacular. “Pacific Daydream” therefore treads an uneasy line, somehow both not Weezer at all and the logical conclusion of the band. Not nearly as bad as you might think. CO

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Listen here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YGod7Xnqr20

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