Dustin Steen: “Mixed Genres” has a strong spiritual element

With an onslaught of pressure from modern record labels to produce high-selling records frequently and consistently, and the need to secure a loyal consumer base, an artist’s ability to experiment and evolve with his or her sound seems somewhat futile in the modern era. It seems that musicians throughout every genre are bound by the limitations of what sound will sell, often creating a disassociation between artistic freedom and production demands. With such high stakes, it takes immense talent and perhaps sheer disregard for self-preservation for an artist to experiment successfully with the many facets of the musical lexicon. Perhaps

Dakú Lights: “Illuminate” – a consistent palette of genre-melding pop offerings

London based alternative pop band, Dakú Lights, was formed in April 2016 by the three band members who are represented by their own distinct color to match their personality, with Bhavini being red, Haiiiro as pink-orange and Panda as purple. They have a unique blend of music which incorporates Pop, Kpop, EDM and Urban influences. Currently pursuing a record deal, the band is focused on producing high quality music and building their stage presence for international audiences. Dakú Lights recently released their 5-track EP, entitled “Illuminate”. The title takes a cue from the band’s name, as Dakú means ‘dark’ in

Henry Metal: “So It Hath Begun” will grab you by the balls with a cruel squirrel grip

Henry Metal might have a fine veil of satire embracing the project, but he makes just about the best tribute to the excess of the 80’s and 90’s hard rock and metal genres ever. He has just released his 9 track album, entitled “So It Hath Begun” which contains great songs, which are very easy to bang your head and sing along with. The tracks all have a grooving and slamming feel, plus cool shredding and solos. In fact Henry Metal sounds no different to any of those legendary rock and metal bands from the golden era. You either get

Aeronaut: “Skara” – excellent progressive buildups and rhythmic backflips

Aeronaut can be described as Progressive Rock, Post-Rock, Indie, or simply Alternative Rock, but that doesn’t really matter. All I know is that this project delivers very interesting, fresh, and well-rounded music. Aeronaut has a huge dynamic range, from extremely fast and heavy with smooth, powerful vocals to very relaxing and atmospheric. The music is very melodic, clear and well-produced, the song “Skara” flows and changes to new and exciting ideas. The guitars are very lush and full sounding, during both heavier and mellow parts, while the bass and drums thump and bang in all the right places. Aeronaut is

Eric Hausmann: “Soaked” manages to tap into a very specific emotional core

Eric Hausmann is a multi-instrumentalist and film composer. He has produced music for a number of Malaysian films, in addition to scoring for a variety of New York film productions. He performs live as a guitarist with Portland’s Tres Gone, and Malaysia’s Space Gambus Experiment. He is formerly a member of The Gone Orchestra and Brainwarmer. Hausmann recently released “Soaked” a seven track recording which is described as “A cross-section of Asian dub-fused rock n’ roll with deep India influences.” But it’s probably more than that, as I’m hearing post-rock, world fusion, and ambient rock influences injected into these tracks. Eric

MOOD: “The Wave” is in the right lane!

Hip-hop has changed – there’s no debating that – but change isn’t always indicative of something bad. That being said, it’s refreshing to hear more rapping, with the exception of one or two bridges, versus the continual rap/sing mix that’s permeated mainstream as of late. You’re allowed to appreciate more than one way of creating music and while a lot of rappers have the notion that they should be singing as well, there’s a place for it all, especially if you don’t have a decent singing voice. You obviously can’t disregard one lane of Hip-hop while claiming to be a

EsZ: “If You Didn’t Get This Message, Call Me” – an audacious creative effort

On his new album, “If You Didn’t Get This Message, Call Me”, EsZ aka Erron’s Attic comes out swinging from the first song, a great balance between classic Hip Hop and modern. As usual EsZ gets well thought out ideas through his songs in innovative ways; you definitely get the feeling he has the lyrical substance he wants to express. Although we’re in a dismal era of Rap currently, this could be one of those instant underground classics. EsZ catalog is filled with parables, fables, morals and lamentations, forms of storytelling that compress people and experiences into neat, digestible lessons.

Luna 13 – the solid foundation for gut-ripping synths

The award winning Los Angeles band Luna 13 is forging a new genre of music they call Black Metal/Bass Music. Their brutal yet groove based electro-metal incorporates elements of electronica, death metal, and industrial rock – all done with electronics, which means no string instruments. Music maker Dr. Luna, creates a metal sound with synthesizers and by wrapping heavy distortion around sub-bass. Luna 13 who has been performing live for a few years now, opening for death metal/industrial and electronica projects alike, came into its own when Lilith Bathory joined in 2015. Since, Lilith, the band’s front woman, has been booking modeling jobs

Dezzyano: “Hello World: The Renaissance” – a cohesive feel and tone throughout the album

Now I’ll be honest, before this album was released, I didn’t know much about Dezzyano, the rapper raised 5 mins from Atlanta on Six Flags Dr. I decided to give it a go. And I became a very unlikely Dezzyano fan. The 16 track album, “Hello World: The Renaissance” starts off strong with ‘Anita Baker’. It has an extremely catchy refrain built on a bass and horn driven soul soundscape. This sets the tone for the album, which sees Dezzyano finding different ways of telling his story with catchy hooks and intense verses. From a critical standpoint, this album has

Sick.Life: “Dreamers” – showcasing the diversity and talent of the roster

Sick.Life a collective of artists and an independent music label based in El Paso, Texas. A couple of months back they released their critically acclaimed album, entitled “Contagion”. Now off that album comes the single “Dreamers” produced by NZO, and featuring Josh Brown on the chorus and bridge, while the verses are handled in order of appearance, by Sonny Weston, Lavoe, C.Notes and E$ BFNE. For hip-hop fans growing up in the 21st century, the Sick.Life collective is simply a perfect match between raw lyrical muscle and dynamic production. I listened to the track last night with the intention of

Getting “Naked” with Billboard artist YUNG RO

  1. How long have you been in the music business and how did you get started in the first place?

YUNG RO: My family owns a company called Black Pearl located in downtown St. Louis Mo. It consists of a tattoo and recording studio therefore I was exposed to the music game at a early age. I’m now the owner of both.

  1. Who were your first musical influences that you can remember?

YUNG RO: The normal Old School artist like Rakim, who I had the pleasure of meeting. Then newer artist like Nelly cause he repped the hometown.

  1. Which artists are you currently listening to? And is there anyone of these that you’d like to collaborate with?

YUNG RO: Drake and Future. And I wouldn’t mind collaborating with Wiz Khalif.

  1. Have you suffered any ‘resistance’ from within the industry, and if so how have you handled that, and how do you handle criticism and haters in general?

YUNG RO: Yeah I think every artist experience resistance or obstacles however ones determination gets them through it. Critics motivate me to push harder.

  1. Do think that video is an appropriate marketing tool for your music, and do you have any videos published for fans to see?

YUNG RO: Definitely visuals lets the audience get up and close. They can connect a face to the music. I have all types of videos music, interviews, and community events. Just go to YouTube and type in yungrobp.

  1. Which do you ultimately prefer? Entertaining a live audience or creating songs in a studio setting?

YUNG RO: Live performances give me adrenaline and studio work is a release if that makes sense.

  1. Tell us something about your lyrics and music production on your releases. Which part of these processes do you handle, and which do you outsource generally?

YUNG RO: I run a actual label with separate divisions like marketing, street promotions, production, and publishing. I write my own music cause it has to reflect me but I have a creative crew to help me vibe. I believe in spreading the wealth.

    8. What is the title of your latest music release and where can fans find it?

YUNG RO: No specific title yet but go to soundcloud.com/yung-ro-1 for my current tracks.

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  1. Which ingredient do you think makes you special and unique as a performing artist in a genre thriving with newcomers? 

YUNG RO: My fan base is a advantage. Being African American, Japanese, and Latino blessed me diverse audience.

  1. If you were forced to choose only one, which emotion, more than any other drives you to be a part of this tough business?

YUNG RO: Passion powers the drive to succeed in life.

  1. Which aspect of being an independent artist and the music making process excites you most and which aspect discourages you most?

YUNG RO: Creative control and the downfall is capital to fuel your campaign.

  1. How do you market and manage your music career? Do you have a management team or do you control everything by yourself?

YUNG RO: My father was my manager but he had to take a break due to heath issues (Lupus). One fortunate thing he gamed me up on the knowledge to push my career. Currently I’m working on my youngest brother’s project his name is Jiro.

  1. How do you achieve your sound? Do you work from a private recording environment or do you use a commercial sound studio?

YUNG RO: I have my own recording studio with updated pro tools and plug ins.

  1. The best piece of advice in this business you actually followed so far, and one you didn’t follow, but now know for sure that you should have?

YUNG RO: Being dependable when I was young I missed deadlines. In this business your word is your bond.

  1. If you had the choice to work with any famous Producer, who would that be?

YUNG RO: Metro boomin that’s my homeboy. But I have worked with Grammy producers like ThaBizness and TrakStarz. That was in my earlier career I charted Billboard twice.

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  1. Do you consider Internet and all the social media websites, as fundamental to your career, and indie music in general, or do you think it has only produced a mass of mediocre “copy-and-paste” artists, who flood the web, making it difficult for real talent to emerge?

YUNG RO: Well technology has definitely dumb down the music scene. Auto-tunes you can’t tell who is who. Internet has made it easy to pirate music free. However it is important to the independent cause we can literally travel around the world on a laptop. It’s just some people abuse the privilege.

  1. If someone has never heard your music, which keywords would you personally use to describe your overall sound and style?

YUNG RO: Not keyword how about phrase. For the ladies. Women fuel the industry.

  1. How would you describe the current state of Hip-hop, R&B and Rap?

YUNG RO: Disappointing. Music sales are low most artist are depending on tour money. And half the music you can’t even understand what their saying. What use to be morally wrong is now actually cool.

  1. As you work your way through your career, which more than any other fires-up your imagination – A Grammy award, Platinum music sales or any other tangible milestone?

YUNG RO: Music sales are important because it shows I got loyal fans. Awards can be politics. Marketability is crucial cause endorsements can help ones career.

  1. What is the ONE thing you are NOT willing or prepared to do EVER, in your quest to achieve a successful musical career?

YUNG RO: Sellout on my belief or turn my back on my family. Now free loaders don’t constitute family.

OFFICIAL LINKS: SOUNDCLOUDINSTAGRAM

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