Valerie Warntz: “I Don’t Love You Anymore” – structured and inspired song-craft

Valerie Warntz is a 19-year-old singer-songwriter who has been musically inclined since childhood. She decided to be a musician at 9-years-old enrolling into The Sviridov’s School of Arts where studied guitar and piano. During her educational years, she won various awards and at the age of sixteen she wrote her first song “I Don’t Love You Anymore”, which she has now released as a single and music video. The song is also on her debut album “Revelation”. The track is intentionally as heartfelt as it is pensive. Lyrically, Valerie doesn’t leave anything hanging; the song sort of has its completion,

Michael A. Galianos: “My Heart Is Breaking” (Featuring Dan Exactly)

Michael A. Galianos has just released the single “My Heart Is Breaking” (Featuring Dan Exactly) with words and music by Michael A. Galianos and Dan Exactly. Michael A. Galianos is a singer/songwriter from Bergenfield, NJ. He has recorded one EP and two albums since 1997, beginning with the EP “Feel”, under the moniker of M.A.G. (Mad Ass Greecians). In 2006, he released his first full length, “Cerebral Snapshots”. In 2011, he released his second album, “Beautiful Discovery”. His sound is melodious pop/rock, along the vein of The Beatles, The Beach Boys and Big Star, with the occasional delve into the experimental.

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

Jake Ward: “Sound With Intention” gives you plenty in each song

Jake Ward, a longtime singer-songwriter, producer, performer, and multi-instrumentalist with years of experience writing original songs, performing, and contributing to a plethora of musical projects. Ward attributes his musical awakening to listening to the Goo Goo Dolls when he was just 13 years old. His other musical influences include John Mayer, U2, The Script, and a ton of 2000s era pop punk, like Fall Out Boy, Panic at the Disco, All Time Low, and Yellowcard. Ward says that every one of his songs was written with an acoustic guitar as the base instrument. Jake Ward has now officially released his first solo musical project, “Sound With Intention”, a 5-track E.P produced entirely by himself and Nick Loiacono at Fang Studios in San Mateo.

Jake Ward has sort of perfected his own genre — acoustic indie-pop with some rock mixed in and electronic influences. Ward, as you will hear, is well-versed in the recent past. There’s no doubt he has spent his formative years studying the guitar scene of the post-millennium intently. But it is his air of confidence and zest that lifts Ward out of the cheese saturated pseudo-guitar quagmire inhabited by his odious ilk who profess to peddle wares of a similar nature.

Jake Ward’s decent onto unsuspecting hordes of potential fans, with his EP, “Sound With Intention”, is one of tremendous hard work and belief, not just in his own ability but in order to ensure anyone outside of his hometown would take him seriously. That’s the absolute first feeling these songs gave me.

Ward’s stunningly melodious, yet spiky songs are tighter than a kiddie cap on a pill bottle. Each track is an economical three minutes or so with no wasted bars, or even notes for that matter. This the kind of music that is very hard to stop listening to once you’ve heard a few songs, because Ward gives you plenty in each song, but 3 minutes just seem not quite enough, forcing you to want to hear more – to discover how far he will push his skillset.

There are those artists who don’t just write songs, they write songs, and then there are artists who don’t just sing songs, they really sing songs. These are artists who know a thing or two about the math and emotion of music and how that corresponds into making a song sound awesome. Jake Ward is part of the latter categories

With his talent Ward can reach any audience, and it’s clear that he is very familiar with the construction of the pop matrix. It is evident from track one, “If You Leave Me Know”, with its sumptuous harmonies, glorious falsettos and jangling layers of gritty guitar.

It is evident on track two, “I Don’t Really Know”, with its edgy, hand-clapping urban beat, its coy vocal intonations and soaring bridges wrap in multiple choral embellishments. It is evident on track three, “Make It Right”, with its funky guitar strumming, the ever-evolving and uplifting beat, and the heartfelt vocals.

It’s evident on track four, “Never Letting Go”, with its sweeping, epic choruses, and summer breeze-like sonics that is simply heartwarming. It’s evident on track five, “Picture Perfect”, with its soothing, feeling-good verses, the crisp and clean acoustic-guitar soundscape and the sweet as syrup choruses, which really are bittersweet when you listen to the lyrics. It really is all too evident, to simply overlook or miss listening to “Sound With Intention”.

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