Strangers Of Necessity – “Abundance” – dripping with jazzy soul!

Every once in a while, there comes a track that arrives out of the left field and takes people by surprise. One that can prematurely declared an instant classic and actually lives up to the title. I love all types of music, but my taste is irrelevant. What is relevant is the fact that the single, “Abundance” by Midwest duo Strangers Of Necessity, will be considered great years from now. The track speaks to a generation of people struggling to prosper and find harmony, in a confusing, stressful modern environment. The duo bring forth their mindset and experiences, with immaculate flow

The Love Theme – “Hold On” – one mighty swirl of dance-floor groove

“Hold On” is a groovy cauldron of electronic shades and textures. Part dubstep, part soul, part funk, pretty much all breaks; there’s a rhythmic melting pot attitude that runs through the track, which ricochets off the walls with crusty slapping drums and long-dark-tunnel basslines. This is the latest track by The Love Theme – the brainchild of producer Dominic Owen on his Smokersblend record label. The cut is taken off an upcoming album, out later this year. “Hold On” is an absolute monster of a tune with soulful vocal chants, and some funky bluesy guitar throughout. As with a lot

MACKENZIE NICOLE’S TEDX TED TALK ‘MYSTIC: A MENTAL HEALTH ODYSSEY’ IS NOW LIVE

NEW ALBUM MYSTIC OUT NOW VIA STRANGE MAIN/STRANGE MUSIC NEW VIDEO FOR “GOODBYE” With authentic storytelling and varying sounds, Mackenzie Nicole bares her soul and shares her most intimate emotions, thoughts, and struggles throughout the songs on her new album Mystic out now on Strange Main (the pop music division of Strange Music.) “It’s a story I needed to tell,” Mackenzie explains. “I’m not the only person who’s been through this. I’m not the only person who has broken down and felt like the only one in the world.” With a desire to reach others who are struggling and further

Matthew J Van Howe – “Emergent Narrative” – a deluge of his sonic palette!

You could call this ambient, experimental, drone, avant-garde, cinematic or simply electronic music, the fact is “Emergent Narrative”, is so impactful it’s like it’s its own genre. It’s as if some new musical form has been created from retro synthwave sounds, and ultra-modern avant-garde motifs. I was stunned by the textures, and the moods that got stuck in my head, along with the intensity and dynamic depth. This is an album to hear again and again. Loud, raucous, serene, gentle, stretching, insistent, melodic, dissonant. It is a collection of 12 musical pieces with simple one-word titles. Meaning, the Chicago composer,

Andy Pett – “Back Again” turns hurt into art with great results on this song

Experience with adversity builds exemplary character and a spirit of resilience that allows artists to deliver great music. Their personal stories provides them with original ideas and profound insight to rap or sing about, creating a relatable feeling of vulnerability that fans emotionally connect with. Many prominent artists from today’s culture have battled through adversity to become widely accepted and beloved. There is an interesting argument – and quite a lot of statistics lean toward this theory – that adversity is necessary to become successful.  The bottom line seems to be that many artists lack the ambition to succeed because

Onicks – “High” is a deep slow-burn

With its enigmatic beauty, intoxicating depth and intense emotion, the follow-up to “High” is one of the most intriguing records of the year so far. The lyrics are elliptical and fragmented, touching on addiction, identity and eroticism. The track’s mood is druggy, dislocated and tortured – there are frequent metaphoric references to substances and psychedelics – the shape-shifting structure of “High” will capture your attention from top to bottom. Snapshots of elusive love and fleeting lust are scattered throughout – for whom, or for what, is where you need to read between the lines. Born and raised in the San

Midwest Hiphop duo Strangers Of Necessity drop their new single “Abundance”

Strangers Of Necessity are an American hip-hop duo, based in the Midwest, consisting of prolific producer, CoryaYo and veteran lyricist, Fooch the MC. They linked via Twitter and quickly became friends, sparking an immediate chemistry and need to make quality music together; hence the name Strangers Of Necessity. They instantly began recording music and doing shows locally, generating a nice buzz in the area. Their sound is best described as a fresh take on that golden era of hip-hop, blending tasteful jazz and soul samples, crisp snares, boomy kicks on wonky patterns with a soulful delivery, dense schemes and potent

Kilo M.O.E. – ‘Fly G’z and Palm Treez’ – serves as the perfect canvas for the rapper’s elite lyricism

The Baltimore-based producer, songwriter, rapper, Kilo M.O.E.’s evolution over his past three albums has been inspiring to see. I’ll always admire artists who push themselves creatively, and that’s exactly what, Kilo M.O.E. has done on his fourth studio album, ‘Fly G’z and Palm Treez’, and it pays off in leaps and bounds. Each instrumental is rich and developed, serving as the perfect canvas for the rapper’s elite lyricism. Something that this recording and Kilo M.O.E.’s recent albums have done well is allow him the freedom to rap for the sake of his craft within the confines of the album’s larger

Jim Wyly – “You Took Me” – It’s rhythmically tight, warm and edgy

Texas singer songwriter Jim Wyly is back with another soul-stirring track from his “The Artisan” album. Over 40 years deep into his craft, the Austin troubadour sounds like a home-cooked meal. He deals out comfort food for the head, heart, and soul. All of this serves his finely drawn guitar lines, bourbon-stained-like vocals, and funky acoustic-driven grooves as thick as molasses. A subtle blend of blues, country, folk and southern rock runs right down the middle of “You Took Me”. “Musicians’ musician” is an overused term. Why wouldn’t anyone with two good ears appreciate Jim Wyly? As Jim doesn’t cater

Hanen Release Brand New Video For The Song “Breathe”

It’s never been easier for artists to stay independent. Of course you can get good music producers, good visual directors for videos, good rappers and good singers to feature on your track without a great budget, but you have to search the world over to find deals you can afford, or convince creatives to work with you. Texas born artist, now living in the LA area, Hanen, somehow got it all together on his latest track called “Breathe”. He sings soulfully and raps with an urban edge all by himself, backed by an atmospheric slow-burning, and ear-warming beat made by

Harlequins Enigma: “Best of Åge” -Displays the Full Range of Åge’s Talent

Harlequins Enigma decided it was time to release his first ‘Best of’ solo performance album, in February 2014. The album is mix from the artist’s previous period from 2008/2009 and also includes material from his comeback year in 2013, plus a few releases from January 2014.

Harlequins Enigma is Åge Riisnes who was introduced to music in 1991 via Protracker on the Amiga platform. He, like all others had a hard time starting from scratch producing music. His goals in the 90`s was to become a Boom Jinx, Atjazz and Mantronix` equivalent in skills, but he ended his career in 1998 with a footnote claiming to have ‘reached an above intermediate state in music’. Åge’s comeback in 2006 through 2007 was also tracker based, until 2008 where he started his career in the 16bit professional league.

Later on in his career he referred to an incident that happened at Haukeland Sykehus in Bergen, Norway (a psychiatric hospital) in 2000 or 2001. Here apparently a senior Doctor labelled him a ‘medium’ – a phrase that left him stunned!

Through his music, Åge Riisnes has made mental and spiritual contact with professional musicians such as Vangelis, Tangerine Dream, Jean Michel Jarre, Klaus Schulze, Jan Garbarek, Kate Bush, Dave Weckl, Kitaro and many others. A real milestone is Jean Michel Jarre’s use of Age’s track “Bells” on his 2004 album release Metamorphosis.

In 2009 Harlequins Enigma produced a staggering 400 tracks, both 8 and 16 bit, of which many made it to finished masters. The “Best of Åge” though, only contains solo material by the artist.

One thing that I love about Åge Riisnes is that he performs with the liberty to do whatever he wants to. He is in no way chained by record companies telling him what music to make and who to sound like. Once upon a time in the music industry, if you were really different, you were given the chance to express your own concept of sound art. Today, if you try to do something different, then you get immediately categorized, and end up in the “not likely to sell” filing cabinet.

best-of-age-300Åge Riisnes is one of those who would probably end up in the “not likely to sell” filing cabinet, by record companies. But if you love the innovators of electronic music like Tangerine Dream, Klaus Schulze, Tomita, Mike Oldfield, and even Vangelis, then you cannot overlook one of the best outsiders looking in, like Åge.

Åge has been working these past years, building his own unique sound, and trying to stay alive through all the modern-day musical confusion of overnight pop stereotypes. Åge Riisnes and Harlequins Enigma’s most loyal fans though, have a particular expectation of what music he creates. And he never under-delivers or disappoints them.

Even with all the modern technology available, Åge Riisnes does not fall into the trap of re-mixing his tracks with the current synthpop sound used in mainstream electronica. People often link music to events in their lives, thereby forming recollections and associations with time periods. The 14 tracks that make up the “Best of Åge”  ” stay original, organic and retro sounding. Thereby fully respecting the integrity of the time periods from whence each song came.

Åge Riisnes’ use of digital technology at different times in his career is evident on this album, from start to finish, and makes it a memorable piece of work. That the “Best of Åge” is also so brimming with power and imagination is even more extraordinary. It is an album that displays the full range of Åge’s talent, where he matches up technique, experimentation and emotional power.

How many trance, ambient and techno songs have you heard that have the same drum arrangement and even the same synth, string and pad work? That’s because today’s ‘synth superstars’ all work with the same mountain of software, samples and patches, having no musical or technical knowledge whatsoever. Åge Riisnes’ uses the minimum amount of instruments and the maximum amount of creativity and knowledge!

This keeps Åge’s music-sound fresh, guaranteeing that the “Best of Åge” is one of those music albums that will never become obsolete with time.

 

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OFFICIAL LINKS:

Artist Website

CdBaby

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