Sunday, 02 February 2014 16:35

New Music Releases February 2014

Most of these songs are available on iTunes or Bandcamp. Please check back as we update you on the most recent releases.

 

"Slingers" - Rob Marciano and Knowledge the Pirate have a hot collabo and a new song from the mixtape "The Pimpire Strikes Back."

"What Is To Be Major" - Barsheem, soulful NY crooner, releases his album on the most appropriate of days – Valentine's Day.

Published in New Releases
Sunday, 02 February 2014 16:30

New Music Releases January 2014

Most of these songs are available on iTunes or Bandcamp. Please check back as we update you on releases and their availability.

 

"Against the World" - Remington – who has energy like this? Remington can compel anyone to move.

"Faces" - Manic After Midnite's down-tempo house would make Samantha James proud.

"Yacila" - Mayta, Dallas's premier Latin band, added a video to their Afro-Caribbean infused song.

"Fuck Nigga" - Lil RG Yilla condeming dudes who ain't handling their business.

"Regular" - Beatking and D. Carter release a new video to an anthem that claims they aint regular.

"Suits & Gunsmoke" - Chris GQ Perry takes a break from bragging about his bedroom skills and shares some introspection on life and loss.

"In and Out of Sleep" - Dustin Cavanos. Saw Dustin walking outta Buzz Brews, probably shoulda got an autograph.

"I'm International" - Chris Cash, the premier rapper from the City of Sin, drops another well produced-video.

"Jazzy As Funk" - Ivan The Paynter tries a new groove on his debut rap album. Think Guru.

"Free Ballin" - SniperShot's drops something for his Dallas fanbase and beyond.

Published in New Releases
Saturday, 01 February 2014 20:45

New Music Releases Oct-Dec 2013

 

Most of these songs are available on iTunes or Bandcamp. Please check back as we update you on the latest releases and their availability.

"Kill Me"- Klass Money is one of FL's fastest-rising rappers; this song is accompanied by a video with a "dope visual style."

"Alright" - Bryan Poppin new song features Tamela Mann, and together they raise the proverbial gospel roof.

"Lipstick On Her Cigar" - Chris Robinson and his guitar strum the sadness of the blues.

"Anyday" - Alexis Jones, Raleigh, NC, songstress, belts out adult-oriented R&B melodies.

"Someplace On Earth" - the Downtown Fiction sings for "losers and kings" on this buoyant pop-rock fusion.

"Bad Company" - John Beezy reps Drop Boy Records in his new song and video.

"Pay Your Tab" - RC & the Gritz releases their debut album to rave reviews.

"BLVD" - Nayah shows Dallas how to take to the boulevard with a song fit for the dance club.

"Alone" - Love Brooklyn claims to be alone. But I'm sure that their myriad of female fans would disagree that they are alone or better off that way.

"Wrecking Ball" - Tom Bertram's version isn't available for purchase. But the cover of Miley Cyrus is worth the listen.

"Enjoy: Like: Love" - Malice and Mario Sweet release an album in celebration of their wedding anniversary and birth of a child.

"Grammar" - Body Language, NY-based electronica/soul quartet, releases another album featuring hits "Just Because" and "Well Absolutely."

"Rent" - Brian Hazard gives away free copies of his unique brand of synthpop.

"Right Mistake" - Shawn Mayer isn't afraid to be sinful when she makes a mistake. She also isn't afraid to rock out.

"Success" - Young Rado spits a positive message on his latest single.

 

Published in New Releases
Tuesday, 14 January 2014 03:31

Avery Sunshine

Meet the "artist" called Avery - a singer of formidable talent whose vocal warbling recalls Ledisi, Erykah, and Jill while weaving in the incredible gospel intonations of Lisa McClendon and Sherri Jones-Moffett. This project is her journey, and on it she delightfully guides the listener. Sit back and enjoy, you are in able hands.

On her album, Ms. Avery walks with confidence into her music, with attention to the mood, lyric, and delivery necessary to touch her listener. Avery's voice is intentionally and seductively controlled, housing a purposeful restraint. You know this gospel trained artist has vocal power - evidenced by "All In My Head" and "Blessing Me" - but that power is only released when required due to either lyrical interpretation or by emotional demand.

Her voice is intriguing; it demonstrates personal strength and independence while addressing the truth of being plagued by human frailty and realities. Contrasting Aretha, whose classic music tends to showcase strength with seldom self-reflection or investigation, Avery rather follows in the footsteps of the likes of Anita Baker whose music can bear to admit mistakes without self-degradation, but rather maintaining dignity.

An amazing project from an talented artist, the standout track is "Ugly Part of Me," a song which, quite frankly, is better in long form than in radio edit. The radio edits removes too much of Avery's quality and skilled interpretation. The long version is sultry, with restrained emotion, solid storytelling, and layered, lyrical interpretation. The track uses an excellent blend of delightful "churchy" chords and references. (IE: Hammond B3 organ reference, BGV arrangements, etc). Love the horns. The vocal and music grove is solidly 'in the pocket' with great restraint and emotional focus. Avery pulls the listener into each lyric with ease and finesse. The lyric break at 3:42 mins is a huge component of the song (and missing from the radio edit). During this lyric break, the use of vocals to 'wail' in agony related to the poor decision of causing her lover to walk out - is brilliant! Simply magical!

Related to overall the project, big snaps to the vocal arrangement. Lead and BGV's on the project are quality. They fit each other like call and response fits spirituals and field songs. With a quality band laying the cornerstone of each track, this is a well-balanced project with a variety of tracks showcasing genuine ability; the project has an authenticity that feels true to the soul and prowess of Avery Sunshine.

Highly Recommended: "Ugly Part of Me" "Bags Packed" "Blessing Me" "All In My Head."

Published in Reviews
Friday, 03 January 2014 00:09

"Just Because" - Body Language

I've been sleeping, and I hate when I do that.

A few months ago, I heard "We Got Enough" by Body Language on SIRIUS radio. I thought, "Damn, cool song!" I bought it on iTunes, placed it on heavy rotation on the workout mix, and kept it moving.

People, I was sleeping. Because today I was out and about and heard "Just Because." And I realized, I really like this group. No, wait, hold it. I mean, I really REALLY DIG THIS GROUP. (Of course, you know that means I bought it.)

"Just Because" has this 80's retro soul-pop sound. As if Philp Oakley (the Human League) decided to do a duet with Five Starr, and then they all relocated from London to Brooklyn. The vocals (including the background), the groove, and the video make me smile. I've been hearing more soulful synth of late; this groups commands it better than most. 

You know how I feel about indie; it's overlooked and ignored. But this is great stuff. It deserves to be heard. And not "Just Because .." 

Published in Reviews
Friday, 20 December 2013 02:20

"What Is To Be Major" - Barsheem

Barsheem's EP "What Is To Be Major" is a compelling mix of party, throw back,and intimate tracks. As a singer-songwriter, he shows his musical range and his ability to stylize.

The lead single from the EP is "If This World Were Mine," originally recorded by Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell, then classically rerecorded by Luther Vandross and Cheryl Lynn.

Barsheem's take on the song provides a nice luscious 70's vibe. The instrumentation is good and his voice has a light, smooth, clean characteristic. His voice is a gift - one that he stayed within the pocket on.

Both earlier versions of "If This World" were duets, and it is difficult to turn a duet into a solo piece. Barsheem's vocals are good. Sometimes, though, the beat overtakes him. Nevertheless, the performance is well worth the listen.

The best song on the project is "No One." The song shows off his voice without competition. There's a strong balance between the writing and the vocals, and Barsheem's emotional connection is evident.

Honestly, Barsheem's connection to his music and his musical history is evident throughout the entire project. He is a talented singer-songwriter who doesn't compete with or repeat the past. He honors it.

In a time where there seems to be a dearth of soul singers, Barsheem's voice is needed and refreshing. Kudos to him for what he has brought with this EP; I look forward to seeing what else he has in store.

Special contribution by Anthony Johnson 

Published in Reviews
Sunday, 15 December 2013 20:42

"All You Girls" - Vesta

They say that everything eventually comes back in style. I hope that's not true. There are several things that are gone and should stay gone. Fanny packs and gerri curls top that list. But in music, of late, there's been a resurgence of the retro 60's sound. Justin Timberlake and Robin Thicke have both used it to fine effect. I must admit, I can dig it.

On the song, "All You Girls," Vesta Williams takes her turn with the 60's retro feel. With Vesta's brassy and powerful contralto, you wouldn't expect her to miss. She doesn't. As a matter-of-fact, "All You Girls" may be one of her best songs. While she doesn't display any of the vocal acrobatics that she was known for, she turns in a performance that is soulful, sultry, and striking. 

Ms. Williams died two years; this album was released this year. Both sadly and ironically, this album is one of her best. It's a call to women to love and respect themselves. It's also about self-reflection. As she states, "Don't always think that I had it together." She's grown and she's encouraging others to grow. It's encouragement that applies to all you boys and all you girls!

Enjoy the sound, the lyrics, and the voice. There weren't many voices like Vesta's, and it will be missed. 

 

Published in Reviews
Friday, 13 December 2013 02:45

"The New Groove" - Ivan the Paynter

Ivan the Paynter told me to check out his new track. It's called "The New Groove." But he admits in the opening lyrics it's an "old school song." Think Digital Underground, think a Tribe Called Quest. It's got keyboard; it's got horns. Think funky rap. 

Here's why I say that some of the best music isn't being played on the radio. Indie music allows for retro, renaissance, and creativity. And when the artists isn't chasing fame, it allows them to step out of the box and create - or recreate - infinite grooves. Even Ivan states that sometimes modern music chokes. And I'm tempted to agree with him.

"The New Groove" isn't for those who like their rap hardcore. Ivan the Paynter says that if you're "sick of the radio, then this is the cure."  I'd add that if you like your rap with a groove, if you like your rap with a bit of funk, then let Paynter paint you his picture.

(Paynter paint you a picture. Was that a bad line? Nah ... I don't think so. LOL)

 

Published in Reviews
Tuesday, 10 December 2013 23:52

"The Famous Nile Earls" - Imhotepshakur

"The Famous Nile Earls" is both melodic and retro. The vibe is percussion and guitar, and the sound is beguiling. The music could easily be the background for a Shaft lovemaking scene or an intimate dinner with friends. It's a dreamy song that should be accompanied with a glass of wine or heard on a solo-road trip while one reflects on the meaning of life. It's serene, it's sexy, it's scintillating. The song well illustrates the power of the instrumental. 

Published in Reviews

I don't know much about the Swag Geeks. But I wish I did. Because on their song "Love Me Right" they've fashioned an bouncy fusion of pop, jazz, R&B, and big band.

The song is driven by the vocals of Brooke Pennington who's intonation is Beyoncesque. The song is fast, fun, and infectious. It's groovy; a song that even Cab Calloway would've approved of. 

I love music, and I love discovering new music. Original music. Good music. And this song is all three. Not to mention, Geeks who claim to have swag? Forreal? Ya gotta like that idea ... 

Published in Reviews
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