Ephect: “Just Like That” – focused on making an impression

Ephect is an Independent Rap/Hip Recording Artist and Music Producer born, raised and currently located in Indianapolis, Indiana (US). Ephect has released around 20 music, numerous singles, and his latest full length album titled “The Nphection”, which dropped back in September 2018. What makes this album different than other recent releases comes down to, how Ephect works with his producers. He doesn’t just compliment good production, he capitalizes on stunning production. In today’s hip-hop scene, fans tend to shy away from raw rapping talent. Gone are the days when the scene was more focused on how good the flow was

Lew Houston: “Safe” – a gritty flow that adds to the lyrical poignancy

Lew Houston is a hip-hop artist currently based in San Diego. Originally from Houston, Texas, Lew rose above the violence and poverty in his life by playing sports and creating music. Influenced by Southern rap styles, he began writing his own lyrics at a young age and released his debut album “The Progression” in 2016.  His latest EP “Back to da Money” is available now, and features the single “Safe”. With no forewarning, Lew gives us a sharp and compact four-minute statement on “Safe”. It’s just a quick and efficient declaration of supremacy, a warning for us not to underrate

Rodrigo Rocha gets the lead role in “SSW Of The Border”

Actor Rodrigo Rocha is not slowing down anytime soon. After a slew of roles, he is preparing to lead a feature indie movie, “SSW Of The Border”. Set to start production in the first quarter of 2019, the film is projected to be released early next year. “SSW Of The Border” will be directed by Felipe Bretas and Bruno Vieira. Other casts of the movie include Kayky Brito, Zhubin Rahbar, Eduardo Magalhaes, Dani Antunes, Eben Reinhardt, Joao Gevaerd, Dimi Papas, Kenzie Dodds, Rhaina Rodovalho, and Juliana Amador. “SSW Of The Border” movie will start production in April 2019. An official

Daud Aur Yahudy: “Home Bound” – The sounds are deep-toned

A former professional athlete in the NFL, now turned singer-songwriter, Daud Aur Yahudy has released his EP “Home Bound”, which follows the re-release of his critically acclaimed debut album “Soulful Life Within”. Daud has earned his right to experiment with his sound and release something that tells us who he really is. The eloquently presents his unique version of future soul lined with a touch of love, spirituality and enchantment. His distinct flare allows him to appeal to the masses without becoming a cookie-cutter R&B and soul singer. The silky smooth, 6 song EP features peaceful and melodic vocals that

Marcus Christ is the American prodigy known for his hit hooks, killer songs, and melodic voice.

Marcus Christ continues to move forward in the entertainment industry. He has just recently released two single songs edited for radio play called “It’s Like” and “If I Knew”, for sale on Cdbaby.com. Marcus Christ is the American prodigy known for his hit hooks, killer songs, and melodic voice. Marcus Christ was just recently released from jail after pleading no contest to vandalism charges. As an artist Marcus Christ has had problems in the past “expressing himself”. Marcus Christ expects his double album “Prince of the Universe” to showcase various producers, but especially his own productions. Marcus Christ admits he

AMARU: “CHAMPAGNE ATTITUDE (RAP-TITUDE MIX)” is totally on fire!

AMARU – a singer-songwriter and a trained actor, originally from the Republic of Suriname residing in The Netherlands since 1991 – has found critical success with enough Pop, Rock, R&B and Electronic influenced songs that there’s plenty of demand for more, but there’s nothing like hearing the gloriously hard-nosed Dutch artist rap a beat to shreds. This is something he does not often do. Now on his latest release – “CHAMPAGNE ATTITUDE (RAP-TITUDE MIX)” – we get to savor just that. The song is rap remix of the title track of his debut album, and is a completely new version,

Hookdiggy: “On My Way” ft. Sunja Dannette – full feel-good potential

2019 sees Atlanta-based Hookdiggy, continuing his growing momentum and his promise to put out well written hip-hop that appeals not only to fans of the genre, but fans of creative and innovative lyrical content. In fact he goes beyond that with his latest track, “On My Way” ft. Sunja Dannette. Utilizing full-bodied smooth instrumentation, Hookdiggy manages to pull off an almost cinematic-like ambiance throughout. The intoxicating mix of jazz, hip-hop, and neo-soul with a dash of dance is maintained at a very high level from beginning to end while the musicianship is top-notch every step of the way. Hookdiggy, together

Tony Marino: “Family and Friends” – a wildly rhythmic demonstration of every crowd-pleasing twist

Tony Marino – the South Philly composer, pianist, and bandleader – has been passionately carrying the torch for his love of Latin Jazz sounds since the release of his debut Cd “Tony Marino & Havana Heat: The Latin Jazz Project” which was dropped in January 1997. The artist who fell in love with the piano at just 7 years of age, has since recorded 10 more albums. Each bringing to the fore his songwriting and performing skills learned over the years, after crossing paths with Bill DelGovenatore, Frank DiBussolo, Al Stauffer, Tom Lawton and Ernest Hopkins – all of whom had an

KC Sisters: “Walk With Me” – sincere, authentic and absolute!

The KC Sisters aren’t old enough to remember when radio programmed pop records next to country, rock, folk, and beyond, but their artistic DNA tells them that’s the way music was meant to be heard. Their sound on the EP, “Walk With Me”, is like a warm embrace from a loved one. It’s sincere, authentic and absolute, taken from a legacy of sound that comes from their fondness for the all-girl groups of the 1960s. The Casey sisters – Deanna, Noelle, Tasha, Elise and Kathleen – highlight their acapella harmonization, as well as their mastery as skilled musicians, playing piano,

GentleBeatz: “Soul City” – the rhythm and flow of free form poetry

Sometimes a recording catches you off guard, rising from nowhere and worming its way into your ears with new sounds and ideas. Such a recording grows on you over time, and eventually can reorient what music and sounds you thought you liked. “Soul City” released on December 31 by artist and producer GentleBeatz, is such an EP. Emotionally rich, musically rich, and technically brilliant, it appeared with little fanfare or publicity to mesmerize our senses. GentleBeatz is an artist and producer currently residing in Mozambique. The eclectic creative crafts his tracks in the lo-fi hip-hop/chill-hop genres. Here he includes flavors

Steven Blane: “Taboo” – Rhythmically, lyrically and musically this would appeal to at least three generations

I discovered Steven Blane a little less than a month ago while reviewing his “Kill Me Nice” album. I was left pretty much in awe by this Adult Contemporary performer who writes, sings and plays the ukulele, piano as well as the guitar. I could imagine Steven Blane kicking ass during the 50s and 60s when artists like Bennett and Sinatra were the hippest men around. His immense talent, both vocally and as a songwriter, is probably wasted in an era where ears are more fine-tuned towards T-Pain’s Auto-Tune pitch correction effect than the sound of a sweet Baby Grand.

Having said that, Steven Blane is here now, and should be cherished by all those who still prefer real instruments and sweet melodies, wrapped around well-structured arrangements and enchanting chords. The 11-track “Taboo” album is a lovely getaway from the hustle and bustle of over indulgent electronics, compressed vocals and superfluous production values. Steven is accompanied by piano, bass and little else. He carries the weight of each and every song on his vocal deliveries.

Steven Blane

Steven Blane

“Taboo” is that too rare event: a perfect singer, a minimal but world class accompaniment. Throughout Blane’s voice remains as vital and powerful, and sensitive, as ever. The songs are exactly what you want to hear Steven sing: “Cold Blood”, “That’s All I Got To Say”, “Pretty Lies”, “Taboo”, “Naked” and “Crashing In” being the pick of the bunch for me. Any aspiring or experienced pianist would do well to heed Steven Blane; his keys, chord choices, their placement, fills and touch are almost always transparent and accessible, allowing relatively quick and sure transcription of what he does. Not the least of his special talents is his restraint; the outstanding musical performances creating the intimacy for Blane’s voice to revel in subtlety.

Rhythmically, lyrically and musically I think Steven Blane would appeal to at least three generations. It’s not often that I run into an album that contains more than one peak experience. On “Taboo”, Blane performs in a totally captivating set of carefully selected songwriting jewels, spinning mesmerizing performances, one after another. It is an essential recording for any fan of ballads, blues, jazz and esoteric pop songs.

“Taboo”, is a well-crafted, if undeniably slow-burning affair, which impressively shies away from cumbersome jazzy arrangements. Steve Blane, with his versatile, reassuringly far-reaching voice and burnished vocal style – can seemingly do no wrong. Much like “Kill Me Nice”, the works on this album feel honest, heartfelt, and uncompromising. If you give yourself over to the music, it is captivating and compelling, and I have the feeling that, over time, this will remain one of my favorite Steve Blane albums. Sure, I’ll still be popping in other releases by the man, but this album acts as a subtle emotional roller coaster, if such a thing is possible. It takes you on a journey of a desperation, love and hope going through its 11 tracks; definitely worth your precious time!

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