Music

Music

Fri
15
Apr

Sharks in Your Mouth will Shred Your Senses

Announcing on twitter that they've inked a deal with MYO Agency, the Nu-Metalcore band from Ancona, Italy, has released a lyrical video for a single off their debut album (with MYO).

The song, titled 'Say It To My Face', is an ear shattering, senses shredding, cocophany that will appeal to listeners who love it LOUD.

For the new single, Sharks in Your Mouth collaborated with Aaron Matts from the band Betraying the Martyrs. According to their facebook page (which is in Italian), the single is culled from the new album titled: PROMISES.

If your taste in music is head-thrashing, amp-blasting, hardcore metal, 'Say It To My Face' by Sharks in Your Mouth, will have you circling the cage hungry for more.

Sun
03
Apr

2CELLOS Fuses Classical and Hard Rock For Fantastic Concert

2CELLOS played the Fox Theatre in St. Louis, March 31, 2016. Look for their new CELLOVERSE album!

If you don’t believe that a YouTube video about a two man band with over 56 million views is a sign that those two fellows might actually be just as good in person, then you don’t deserve to be on the Internet. I first discovered 2CELLOS the way most of the world has, from fun video clips showing these two good-looking European boys doing to cellos what superstars like Angus Young and Eddie Van Halen do to guitars—namely, beat them up like they owe them money. Two most folks, the word “cello” calls to mind a soft string quartet that plays Celine Dion or The Righteous Brothers while you make your way through the food line at your cousin’s wedding. Unless you were in your school’s orchestra from an early age, you probably couldn’t pick the cello out of any music with more than a couple of instruments involved, sight unseen. After watching them perform live at the Fabulous Fox Theatre, I will never underestimate the power of the cello again.

Sun
13
Mar

Applewood Road Hearkens to Simpler Time; Folk with Rustic Americana Aroma

Applewood Road Dennis Russo Critical Blast

Applewood Road is not only the name of the Album in review, it is also the name of the band--not so much a “band” but more of a trio of young musicians with a penchant for creating music that harkens back to a simpler, less “electric” time. The trio consists of Emily Barker, Amber Rubarth, and Amy Speace.

The three women met for the first time in 2014 in an East Nashville Tennessee café. By the next morning, they had finished writing their first song, Applewood Road.

Six months later, they got back together to write and record “Applewood Road.”

Applewood Road’s music is distinctly Americana with a “folksy” feel to it. It is not at all what I would call country music by today’s (or even yesterday’s) standards. The songs on the album remind me of the music that country music was derived from.

Sun
06
Mar

New Line Theatre's AMERICAN IDIOT Is A Sly But Powerful Wake Up Call

New Line Theatre's production of AMERICAN IDIOT, Mar 3 - 26, 2016. Photo Credit: Jill Ritter Lindberg

The New Line Theatre kicked off their second production in their swanky new digs in the Marcelle Theatre with AMERICAN IDIOT, a mostly sung through musical written by Green Day frontman Billie Joe Armstrong and Michael Mayer, featuring the entire American Idiot album with a few numbers from 21st Century Breakdown included too. Obviously, if you’re a Green Day fan you’ll probably love the show. Me, I’m not a huge fan. I don’t necessarily dislike the band; I just don’t typically listen to them. Immediately after the performance, my first reaction was, “Nice performed by some great talents, but I don’t have much sympathy for these presumably upper-middle class suburbanites being self-destructive by cooking their heroin and meth on the silver spoons they were born with.” And yet something deep in my guts said, “Sleep on this one.

Fri
04
Mar

WE ARE TWISTED F***ING SISTER! is one of the finest Rock Docs you'll ever see!

WE ARE TWISTED F***ING SISTER

Being a child in the late ‘70s and early ‘80s exposed me to the peak years of KISS and their merchandising machine, as well as the launch of MTV.  I like to think I have somewhat eclectic musical tastes these days, but I still love KISS not to mention all those bands that exploded to national fame with some assist by MTV.  You know, bands like Quiet Riot, Def Leppard, and Twisted Sister.  In fact, TS’s “Stay Hungry” album--and I owned it on vinyl--was only the third album I bought that didn't feature Mickey Mouse, Big Bird, or Star Wars characters.  

Sat
23
Jan

The Ritchie Blackmore Story: The Greatest Guitarist You Know the Least About

Ritchie Blackmore Story Bluray Dennis Russo Critical Blast Eagle Rock

"The Ritchie Blackmore Story" on DVD from Eagle Rock Entertainment chronicles the long and storied career of one of the greatest rock guitarist of all time. With a career spanning over 50 years and running the gamut from Hard Rock to Heavy Metal, from “commercial hit” Rock to Medieval Renaissance music, and considered by many to be one of the most spectacular visual guitar players, Ritchie Blackmore is also the one guitarist most people probably know the least about.

Thu
14
Jan

Avenged Sevenfold Announces Changes; Uncertainty

In an update on their website, Avenged Sevenfold (A7X) has issued a statement that they've exercised their right to stop recording for Warner Bros. Records.

*     *     *     *

In their statement they cite the incredible turnover of executives since they signed on, including "3 different regimes". There is also a mention of a lawsuit filed by the label against the band:

"In the coming days, you may read about the lawsuit our label filed against us for exercising our legal rights, rights the State of California granted specifically to protect artists." - A7X

Mon
28
Dec

Eva Cassidy, Nightbird: One night, one take, one incredible performance!

Eva Cassidy Nightbird Blix Street Critical Blast Dennis Russo

One of the joys in getting to review music is getting to listen to someone you've never heard of before and after listening to them you realized you missed something special for a long time.

Such is the case for Eva Cassidy. I had never heard of Eva or her music prior to listing to the NIGHTBIRD 2CD set I am reviewing here. I could forgive myself for not hearing of it if Eva was someone relatively new on the scene. That is not the case here, so I could kick myself in the pants for not having heard of her sooner and been listening to her music all this time! Eva Cassidy passed away in November 1996 at the age of 33 from melanoma a mere 10 months or so after the music on these CD was recorded.

Fri
18
Dec

Lady Antebellum "Wheels Up Tour" DVD Review

Lady Antebellum "Wheels Up Tour" DVD Cover

Lady Antebellum spent much of 2015 on the road on their "Wheels Up Tour," taking off in Olso, Norway, and landing in Las Vegas in early October. About half-way through they filmed a show at the Irvine Meadows Amphitheatre in Irvine, California on June 27th and that is the basis of this release.

The video opens with a carload of young girls who rode three days from Austin to attend. And no wonder -- they get an up-close-and-personal meet-and-greet with the band. Quickie interviews of fans coming to the concert in Irvine and stage setup and preparations make way for a typical rock concert smoke and lights entrance. They've come a long way since I saw them at southern Wisconsin's Rock County 4-H Fair in the summer of 2008 -- just a simple show following their self-titled debut, but with the enthusiasm you knew would take them far. I see the dude sporting the dual braids is still playing backing guitar.

Thu
17
Dec

Like a Fine Wine, Clapton Just Gets Better with Age

Eric Claption Slowhand at 70 Live Albert Hall

Should someone 70 years old be able to play the guitar like this? Should Vladimir Horowitz have been able to play the piano the way he did in his 80s? While you may have to sacrifice a little finesse, when you’re the master of your instrument age really does become nothing more than a number.

What can be said about Eric Clapton that hasn’t already been said before? Even that line has been said before! I have often found it very interesting that, when guitarists talk about Jimi Hendrix, they say he was the best ever, and they invariably follow up with "I can play him perfectly." Oddly enough, though, I have not heard such banter spoken about Eric Clapton. Yes, there are many that will say, and perhaps justifiably so, that he is the best ever, but I have never heard anyone say they could play him perfectly. Why is that?

Fri
04
Dec

Patty Smyth Delivers Christmas Music So Smooth and Sophisticated, It's Scandalous

Patty Smyth Come On December Scandal

I was a Patty Smyth fan back in the days when she sang such hits as “The Warrior” and “Good Bye To You” with her band Scandal. She was not only beautiful but she also had a way of picking songs that showcased her talents, and a voice that put right up there with Pat Benatar in my book.

After Scandal broke up, I lost touch with what Patty was doing. I knew she married John McEnroe later on, but I lost touch with her musically. I recently discovered that I must have been living in somewhat of a musical shell, because I found out she has written and sung songs that have garnered her Grammy and Academy award nominations.

A short time ago Patty recorded a Christmas album, COME ON DECEMBER, on Parallel 22 Records.

Sun
29
Nov

Spotlight Gallery Rolling Stones Clear Viny and Album Art Lithographs Make Excellent Holiday Gift

Rolling Stones Lithograph Vinyl Time-Life SpotlightGallery

The Rolling Stones Limited Edition Clear Vinyl + Album Art Lithographs.

Normally in reviews such as these I list the email and phone numbers to order the item(s) being reviewed at the end of the review.

Well I’m not doing that here. These collectibles are so beautiful, so well made, and so you-need-to-have-one-of-these, that even at $199.00 they are such a value for what you receive. And because they are limited to only 2,500 worldwide each, I’m afraid that if you wait till the end you might miss out on any remaining. Remember you’re not only going to get the limited edition lithograph, you’re going to get the matching limited edition vinyl album on clear vinyl as well, for the same very reasonable price!

You can come back and finishing reading the review after you have secured yours.

Sat
28
Nov

Straight No Chaser: THE NEW OLD FASHIONED Tour Mixes Fresh "A Cappella" Cocktails

Straight No Chaser performing at the Fox Theatre, St. Louis, 11/27/15. Photo Credit: Jeff Ritter

If you’re in the mood for a classic cocktail, you might order up an Old Fashioned—a jigger of bourbon, two dashes of Angostura bitters, a lump of sugar and just a splash of water. It’s a drink that goes back to the 19th century and is something every bartender should know how to mix. “THE NEW OLD FASHIONED,” however, is an entirely different yet no less potent concoction of heartwarming harmonies, familiar aural flavors and inhibition-busting a cappella, served Straight No Chaser, in the Indiana tradition. Welcome to your new addiction. Please tip generously.

In fact, here’s a tip for you: if you have an opportunity to see Straight No Chaser live in your town, you owe it to yourself to do so. They’ll lift your spirits, get your toes a-tappin’, and stay for a solid hour after the show to meet you and sign your CD, t-shirt, and ticket stub, or perhaps even one of your children. You won’t find too many musical acts more accommodating!

Sun
15
Nov

Gladys Knight and the O'Jays Bring Hits and Smiles to the Fox Theatre

The O'Jays: Walter Williams, Eric Grant and Eddie Levert, at the Fox Theatre, 11/13./15. Photo by Jeff Ritter

When you hear the word “Motown” any number of names should immediately spring to mind: Barry Gordy Jr., Diana Ross and The Supremes, The Four Tops, The Jackson 5, Marvin Gaye, The Marvelettes, Smokey Robinson, and of course, Gladys Knight & The Pips. When I found out that the Empress of Soul was coming to the Fabulous Fox Theatre in St. Louis on November 13, 2015, I was excited. When I found out she was sharing the bill with the O’Jays, the Ohio soul standouts who struck gold time and time again on Philadelphia International Records, I was over the moon. I had to be there to witness these legends for myself.  

Fri
13
Nov

Greg Page's Here Comes Christmas a Sleigh Ride Full of New and Cherished Songs

Greg Page Wiggles Here Comes Christmas Music Dennis Russo Review Critical Blast

I’ve just settled down to type this review after listening to Greg Page’s “Here Comes Christmas” and I am on cloud nine! I feel so good, so happy and here is why.

I have always been a Greg Page fan since I first saw and heard him on my daughter's “Wiggles” tapes and CD’s. Greg was the original Yellow Wiggle and lead singer for the group. I always enjoyed his voice and the songs they sang. As time went by, as time does, the daughter grew and The Wiggles were replaced by other shows and music -- but I never stopped liking Greg’s singing. I just didn’t have the opportunity to listen to him anymore.

Fast forward to today. When I heard Greg was releasing a Christmas album, I was like, "So what if it may be somewhat skewed towards kids? Christmas is Christmas and everyone is a kid at Christmas."

Mon
02
Nov

Laurie Berkner's Favorite Classic Kids' Songs Delivers 57 Songs and 1000 Smiles

Laurie Berkner Classic Kids Songs Dennis Russo Critical Blast

When I heard that Laurie Berkner was going to release a 2CD set of classic kids’ songs, I said to myself “This I have got to hear!”

It is no secret that I and my family are bonafide Laurie Berkner fans. Her original children’s songs have made us smile and given us countless memories since we first saw her perform on Nick Jr’s Jack's Big Music Show. Now here we were going to be able to listen to Laurie and her band sing and put her touch on classic children’s songs. This 2 CD set has 57 total songs, which also include 6 of her own (which, in my opinion, are classics as well and certainly belong here).

Tue
20
Oct

Heaven Adores You: A Documentary about the Life and Music of Elliott Smith

Heaven Adores You Elliot Smith

It’s impossible to write a review of a documentary about Elliott Smith without it becoming deeply personal.  That’s apt, because his solo career was one of deeply personal lyrics and the intimacy of a man alone with only his guitar.

            I was really interested in viewing this documentary because my knowledge of Elliott Smith was rather limited.  I knew he had a rough adolescence, played in a band prior to his solo act, and had committed suicide.  Also, I was aware that he was struggling with his fame from his career.  On the album EITHER/OR, he sings, “I’m so sick and tired of all these pictures of me/Completely wrong/Totally wrong.”

Tue
13
Oct

Building 429 Delivers Praise Music to Raise Your Spirits -- and the Roof

Building 429 Unashamed Dennis Russo Critical Blast

Anyone familiar with Christian Rock today probably knows well the band Building 429. Comprised of Jason Roy (Lead Guitar/Vocals/Keyboards), Michael Anderson (Drums), Jesse Garcia (Guitar/Keyboards/BGVS), and Aaron Branch (Bass/BGVS), their newest album UNASHAMED already has two hit singles getting quite a bit of airplay: "Impossible" and "Ocean Deep."

For those not familiar with them, their name is derived from Ephesians 4:29 which in the HCSB Bible reads as “No foul language is to come from your mouth, but only what is good for building up someone in need, so that it gives grace to those who hear.” They were the Gospel Music Association New Artist of the Year in 2005, and have had many hit Christian songs through the years following, not the least of which was 2012’s “Where We Belong” which set a record for remaining as Billboards #1 Christian Song for an unprecedented 15 weeks.

Mon
12
Oct

"Ode To Thinking" Will Have You Thinking You Need to Hear More from Bobby Long

Bobby Long Ode Thinking Dennis Russo Critical Blast

ODE TO THINKING is the newest album from British singer/songwriter/guitarist Bobby Long comprised of eleven original songs, and produced by Mark Hallman.

Bobby hails from London and moved to New York in 2009. A product of the burgeoning English folk renaissance, it is easy to hear the influences of both the home of his birth and that of his home in New York.

I have been listening to a lot of “old school” rock of late, so listening to Mr. Long’s CD offered me a chance to sit back and listen to music that would stir my thinking. Not being familiar with his earlier works, I wasn’t sure what kind of songs I was going to hear given a title such as ODE TO THINKING. What I found after listening to the CD was that the album was aptly named.

Sat
10
Oct

What's Going On Gives "Taste" of Blues Rock at its Best

Taste What's Going On Live Isle Wight Eagle Rock Entertainment

Taste, founded and fronted by the legendary guitarist Rory Gallagher, was an Irish blues/rock band, and arguably one of the greatest power trios ever to hit the stage. I would easily put them up there with Cream, Emerson Lake and Palmer, Blue Cheer, Grand Funk Rail Road and The Jimi Hendrix Experience as the best ever; certainly, in my opinion, playing by far the best rock ever to come out of the Emerald Isle. Yes, I said ever –  e.v.e.r – ever, by anyone.

What made them so good to me was the sheer raw energy with which Rory Gallagher played the guitar. He could stand to-to-toe with any other great guitarist. Doubt me? His performance was so well-received at the show that when Jimi Hendrix was asked what it was liked to be the best guitar player in the world, he replied, “I don’t know, why don’t you go and ask Rory Gallagher." Need a better recommendation than that?

Pages

Subscribe to RSS - Music