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

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

Kynard: “Get Thru the Day” – what black urban music is intended to be

During February of this year, Hip Hop/Soul artist Kynard released his debut album “Get Thru the Day”, which features the singles “Friend or Foe” and “The Weekend”. Currently located in Austin, TX, Kynard was raised in the Midwest for most of his life, where he was influenced by 90s R&B as well as the sounds of West Coast Hip Hop and East Coast lyricism. Currently Kynard is enjoying the journey of performing, writing new music, and meeting people who enjoy what he does. Starting with a small fanbase, his goal has been getting the music to people either via the social media websites or live performances. Listening to this 10 track album it’s easy to see that he is in a win-win situation.

If you need a break every now and then from the highly commercial, childish, unsophisticated music being put out now a days, Kynard delivers with this album, which contains deep, well thought out, and meaningful music. This dude is so underrated right now. In this album he gives what we all feel as a black, white, and a multi-ethnic society. He gives us hope; he demonstrates what black urban music is intended to be – informative, imaginative, inspiring, lyrical, and hopeful. Kynard has all the traits of a leader.

In recent times black urban music has lifted its head out of the money-making bling scheme of things only on a handful of occasions that have been really impressed to me; D’Angelo’s Black Messiah, Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp a Butterfly and Solange’s A Seat At the Table, among others, have upended expectations and reinvigorated and expanded the category frames of hip-hop, soul or simply black music, placed around them.

Without wanting to sound overly pretentious or downright disrespectful to any of the aforementioned artists or any of their fans, I think that Kynard’sGet Thru the Day”, as an independent release, earns the absolute right to be mentioned in the same breath as these albums.

This is an important context for listening to “Get Thru the Day”, partly because great albums seem to come in waves—and there is a strong case to be made that this album is classic material in the making.  The gritty, moody production together with the soulful singing, the emotionally stirring lyrics and the on-point rapping is truly masterful for an underground production.

Some of the song themes have been ripped straight out of today’s heartbreaking news headlines or torn directly from Kynard’s saddened soul, then twisted into narratives that will leave you emotively scathed. How could you possibly not be moved by a song such as “Friend or Foe”?

But Kynard can be many things as an artist; mainly he is very sensitive and introspective with lyrics that are extremely personal. The man is not scared to speak his mind or to open his heart to the world, as he truly wears his soul on his sleeve. The songs that kept repeating in my player were “Get Thru The Day”, “Friend or Foe”, “Do Me ft. Mickey Shiloh”, “On My Way” and “Conversations With Bae”.

The chemistry is so right on this album; it’s enough to make you re-evaluate black urban music.  It’s in the context of this chemistry that Kynard lands some of his biggest emotional and artistic punches while singing or rapping in his prize fighter mode; bringing home the sheer magnitude of the skillset he’s been creating with all through the ten tracks that make up “Get Thru the Day”.

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