Heavy AmericA: “Motor Honey (Peace)” – It’s rock. Pure and simple.

A couple of years ago, the bands to emulate in modern rock were those that flooded the radios with wickedly catchy upbeat power pop tunes. Then came the neo-metal-driven climate, where even the tame end of the spectrum became heavier. On their new single, “Motor Honey (Peace)”, Boston based three piece rock group Heavy AmericA, proves themselves among the best in the alternative rock genre with a track loaded with hooks for mainstream appeal, but with an energy and drive that keeps them from sounding like mere imitators. The new release which has all the potential to climb the rock

Scotty Seed: One of the more original and thoroughly enjoyable alternative listens of the year!

Proud of his Italian heritage and his role in the LGTBQ community as a queer artist, Scotty Seed is a musician based in the East Village of New York City. Obsessed with art, including fashion and music, Scotty, originally a Jersey boy, started taking songwriting and production seriously in his twenties. Influenced by elements of industrial, pop, grunge, PC music, electronic, and screamo music, he counts artists like Crystal Castles, Marilyn Manson, Hole, David Bowie, Madonna, and Depeche Mode among his inspirations. Fighting an ongoing battle with bipolar disorder, making music provides him with an escape from his mental health

Suburbs: “Sound of the Sea” – a rewarding new project

Suburbs is an indie rock band from Scheveningen, Netherland launched in 1995. The band that has its roots in the eighties and nineties achieved national exposure when they won the national contest “De Grote Prijs van Nederland” (The Grand Prize of the Netherlands), the largest and longest-running music competition in the country.  As of the summer of 2013 Suburbs has started a new chapter. Lead singer Arie Spaans and 2 early band members set to work to bring their old sound back. The following year they started dropping singles and video clips leasing to their mini EP “Masters” in 2016.

Martone: “Erogenous Zone” keeps the adrenaline and emotions flowing!

It was 5 years ago that pop superstar, Sam Smith, stepped up to the plate and showed the world that love songs don’t have to be heteronormative to be beloved. Smith came out publicly, stating that he wanted to be clear on what his album was about. “It’s about a guy and that’s what I wanted people to know.” He was also completely aware of how important his success is to the public narrative. Hearing your humanity represented and validated by pop culture is important, and many LGBT supporting musicians have since been stepping up to share their experiences. The

Red Tan: “Don’t You Dare!” – Vocally anchored and soulful!

Red Tan is a young widow and single mom. Living in an unfamiliar environment while suffering depression and anxiety has been a challenge that she was able to put into music on her single “Don’t You Dare!” It’s an inspirational anthem meant to help others overcome their struggles and difficulties, and achieve their goals. In the meantime it has been a healing medicine for the singer-songwriter herself, helping her to become a stronger and better person. Red Tan’s ability to create deep thoughtful music, her timeless voice, and her capacity to be so introspective, makes her extremely relatable to any

Albert J: “Grow” embraces both aural diversity and true inspiration

Albert J (formerly known as f.o.c.u.s.) is an American hip-hop recording artist residing in Tampa Florida. Moving through Maryland, DC, Virginia, NC, California and now Florida, Albert J got to experience a lot of diverse music and inspirations. From bands ranging from Sigur Ros and Coldplay to Linkin Park and Incubus, as well as many Hip-Hop influences from DMX, Kid Cudi, Mos Def and Busta Rhymes, Albert J grew up with a wide palette of sound. His 3 mixtapes “Youth Religion” (Dec 2013) “Remember” (March 2014) and “YR2” (April 2015), garnered serious attention in the Hip-hop scene, finally leading up

Knarly Jones: “Redemption” takes us on an epic journey

“Redemption”, is Detroit-based EDM producer, Knarly Jones’ second drop in a series of four releases this summer, preceded by “Atonement” which was released in June. After spending time away from music to study mathematics and physics, Knarly returns to the electronic music scene with a refined cinematic style and a slew of new releases. “Redemption” combines cinematic scoring elements with classic electro-house feel and heavy drops to create a unique sound for 2019. Knarly goes into his bag of tricks and creates an enlightening, varied soundscape that unleashes bass all over your face. With all of this to dive into, it’s

Maxime: “The Honest Me Pt.1” – a unique piece of work!

Maxime Boublil was born in Paris, France, into a musical theater family. His father Alain, wrote the musical adaptation of Les Miserables and Miss Saigon, his mother was the first Cosette in Les Miserables in France. As a child Maxime played the cello and then went on to study photography Academy of Arts University in San Francisco, but he discovered what he really wanted to do, when he picked a guitar in a friend’s dorm room. After studying Music in Visual Media, Maxime went on to pursue a career as an engineer at Furstock Studios with three-time aria award-winning engineer

Absolute Doubt: “When Nightmares Become Dreams” – extreme melancholic chill!

John Francis, known by his artist name Absolute Doubt, is an up-and-coming rapper with a talent for freestyling. He works with a number of artists and producers on his latest EP “When Nightmares Become Dreams”, including Lucki, Jay Storm, and Downtime. The project imbues most of the tropes in contemporary swaggy rap music with an omnipresent breeziness that feels endemic to a luxurious daydream. The 2-song release consists of mid-tempo, gently forlorn hip-hop, padded out with New Age trap gauze. The music is pervaded by an all-embracing sonic fog. Absolute Doubt is best when he is pitted against gently fibrillating

Darshae Kiér: “Translation” – poised to take its place on the global stage

Darshae Kiér is a pop artist based in Miami, FL. After the untimely death of his parents, he entered the foster care system where he was shuffled from foster home to foster home. Despite his rough start in life, Darshae has always been determined to rise above and lead with positivity. Inspired by artists like Aretha Franklin, Sam Cook, Prince, Christina Aguilera, Justin Timberlake, and Coldplay, Darshae latest single “Translation” rides on a steamy Reggaeton beat, and strives to spread the artist’s message of hope and inspiration. His melodic flow and lyrical style are potent. He creates hooks with ease,

Vivienne the Witch: “Shadowbox” – a combination of up-in-flames guitar riffs and subtle sweet hooks

Vivienne the Witch are Caterina Fuso (drums/backing vocals), Greta Fuso (vocals and bass), and Lucrezia Peppicelli (vocals and guitar). They started playing together as teenagers in a band called Twister. Having taken part in contests and festivals, as well as recording their first Ep, Twister changed its name to Vivienne the Witch and got noticed by Simone Lanari (El Topo Diablo) and Alessio Rosi who proposed that the band recorded a few songs in their studio. The end result is the 8-track album “Shadowbox”, recorded at Casaohm Recording Studios. The girls have also released a video for the single, “Dreams and Pain”, directed by Francesco Ciavaglioli.

The album cover

The album cover

“Shadowbox” is pretty yet powerful, emotional and cathartic. Musically, the album resurrects post-punk and alternative melodies and rhythms fusing them into dirty, grunge like riffs. In general the song themes seem to address the apparent beauty and promises that life seems to offer on the surface before being disillusioned when expectations fail to live up to your dreams or desires.

Vivienne the Witch combines many attractive elements: a strong sense of melody, good use of hooks delivered a la grunge, solid guitar work, meaningful lyrics, and confident vocals that pull the songs along while evoking the right mood. These girls brings to contemporary music the understanding that you can rock hard and still be musical – that the heavy guitar sound works best when melody and harmony are worked into it. “Shadowbox” confidently accomplishes all of this.

 The vocals set a good tone for the album and the entire band lays down no-nonsense instrumentals into the rest of the work. From track one, the songs combine a plethora of dark moods and threads them together with luminous sonic-splendored arrangements and unabashed honesty. Vivienne the Witch’s combination of up-in-flames guitar riffs and subtle sweet hooks are the backdrop to the scathing and bare vocals.

Vivienne the Witch

Vivienne the Witch

Every time I listen to tracks like “Reason Why I Laugh and Cry” and “One Step To The River”, I am struck with the naked expression of feeling and yet still want to bang my head along with the music. Obviously where Vivienne the Witch stands up a notch higher is on the faster songs, where they are able to unleash their power – leading to standout tracks such as “A Sparkling Explosion” and “Dreams and Pain”.

 Vivienne the Witch come across as talented musicians who understand their craft, understand themselves, and who know that there is no room for ego where art is concerned – that good music must speak for itself. So if you’re looking for three scantily clad girls posing behind instruments, look elsewhere. This music is deep and raw – It’s distinct, unique, and such a relief after all of the cookie cutter bands who have been played on the radio over the past few years.

“Shadowbox” is for the most part an intelligent, sometimes angry, but gratifying album that attempts to face some of life’s growing pains head-on. Showing off both, a subtle vulnerability and a raw edge, Vivienne the Witch connect their lyrics to the music with such heart and vigor that it sounds beautiful.

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