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

The Blue Danes: “Invisible and Untouchable” – a genre-defying band!

If I had to describe “Invisible and Untouchable” by The Blue Danes with one word – it would be ‘intense’. Every phrase, every note, every beat is intense and warm. The up-tempo stuff is intense; the ballads are intense, with smoldering emotions underlying every note.

You can tell with every listen that the band really got into this one. The intensity comes from squarely embedding themselves in every song. And there’s enough catchy hooks and musical variety to make this a very pleasing album.  It has everything a popular music lover will need in a great album – hooks, musicianship, meaningful lyrics, and a variety to the sound.

blue-danes-hypur-350This genre-defying band, made up of FRANK HANSEN (Composer, Guitar, Keyboards, Synths, Vocals), SKIP LOWE (Drummer/Percussionist) and SHAUN COURBAT (Bass, Backing Vocals) have to be one of the most unique sounding bands of the last ten years. Combining Brit Pop, Americana, Indie-Rock, and Alt-Country to create soundscapes dripping with emotion, The Blue Danes deliver an album of 13 crossover gems.

It’s an explosion of infectious rhythms, melodies, harmonies, and string arrangements that will not allow you to remain indifferent. Frank Hansen’s creamy vocals tastefully soar on the ballads and drive the engine of the up-tempo selections with casual flair of a navigated musician. Shaun Courbat is fabulous on bass guitar and Skip Lowe simply rocks! If you want music that will bring a smile to your face and turn you into a human bobble-head doll, this is it.

It behoves me to say this but there is so much genre-locked music out there that genre-defying bands like The Blue Danes are in the minority. We have been besieged by bland and uninteresting groups, and singers whose albums lack life, spontaneity, adrenaline-driving music, and just plain good fun, for so long, that modern popular music has become a stagnant oasis.

Ok, change in style is good, and down through the years we have seen great changes in pop music, but the last 5-10 years have been so boring. So thank God we have The Blue Danes! This band makes music to be enjoyed, music to listen to, music that makes you feel alive inside. And boy, do they do it with style.

blue-danes-hypur-350bAs a group, their presentation is flawless; this is a band that works, with each member complimenting one another and providing the perfect backing for Hansen’s magnificent vocals. The proof is in the pudding, as they say, and you can find it on standouts like “Some Get Through”, “Walls Are Collapsing”, “Hurricane”, “Honeycomb”, “Wings” and “Beautiful And Sad”.

And every song on the album gets 5 stars from me – there’s not a bad track on the album, which is a lot more than can be said for many of the other pop albums I’ve listened to this year. Like powerful pain-killers, the songs on this album will not only cure all that ails you, but it also can be very addicting.

If you haven’t experienced The Blue Danes, you are missing something! Every song is deliciously moving and intoxicating. Frank Hansen’s voice is something to behold. The guitar, rhythmic drumming, and driving bass are in all the right places, and it doesn’t get any better than this! Do yourself a favor and pick this album up – once you listen there is no going back!

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