Natalie Jean and Levi Moore: “The Letting Go” speaks the language of the ordinary person

A good duet, in our modern age, is a rare thing. There are plenty of features, guest verses and co-writes, and the cameo drop-in is a dime a dozen. The number of genuine duets, where vocalists share verses and tell a story together in the space of a song, is very small. If your optimism fails you, as you wonder whether there are enough great acts to keep hit radio stocked with worthy pop music duets, it’s reassuring to find that Natalie Jean and Levi Moore have a first-rate single to carry us through the next few months, all by itself. The

MAKI: ‘Waking Up With The World On Fire’ – truly majestic — grandiose, slowly unfolding, and extremely cinematic

The world is a fragmented place, with fear and hate giving rise to isolationist movements around the globe and huge portions of the population turning inward rather than outward towards each other. As such waves of bigotry spread like wildfire, the music scene becomes extremely important, not just because it means more great music, but because it connects us all together on a wavelength that hits the human heart, soul and mind even harder, faster and deeper than anger can. A creative constant in the field of communicative contemporary Instrumental music, is MAKI who focuses his ample talents on a

3 Phase – ready for genre domination!

The names Chirag Shah, Prasham Deliwala and Melvin Saldana may in themselves not ring a familiar bell in your ear right now. Probably, neither will the moniker ‘3 Phase’, nor their 6 track self-titled EP. It’s logical, it’s the law of the industry’s hype machine – cast a light on the big label clones, and leave the independent creatives in the shadows. Luckily the internet has a different set of rules.  On hearing the 3 Phase EP, the lofty ambition, the focus and dedication of this creative collective of producers, songwriters and vocal talent, makes sense – its six tracks

Sy: “Get Out Of My Dreams” – grab this R&B and Soul extravaganza

The singer, songwriter and author, Sy, releases a brand new single produced by Rueben Wood. The track “Get Out Of My Dreams” is the first single release written by the artist in 2018, since writing two self-help books, “A Swan Among Ducks” and “Saying Yes to (No): Learning the Power of (No) before the end of 2017. This track soulfully captures the spirit and feel of the emotional journey of grown womanhood. It is juicy, dynamic, soulful, gorgeous, and it is nourishment for the soul…and mind, as it examines the intricacies of a relationship built on want and lust. As

IJK: “Johnny & June” – sounds invigorated!

Alternative rock artist Imad Jack Karam, known by his initials and stage name IJK, is a Dubai-based, Lebanese singer-songwriter, who has released critically acclaimed songs and recorded with internationally known music producers in prestigious London studios. Both his singles “Space Odyssey” and “Dancing Shadows” garnered a positive reception from fans and critics alike. IJK has a style that can move between edgy modern-day alt-rock and sixties rock n’ roll crooning.  He recently published his latest single and supporting, fully animated video, for the song “Johnny & June”. So, how does this new offering cope? Very well, in truth. “Johnny &

TRVP HIPPI3Z: “On Lock” – no lack of muscular skill-flexing!

TRVP HIPPI3Z is a Canadian rap duo who just dropped their latest single entitled, “On Lock”.  Listeners beware. This product has been known to blow up and cause fires in a variety of stereo systems, due to the super-hot fire provided by this crew. TRVP HIPPI3Z is a team-up that has risen as great exemplars of righteous chaos. Their supersonic sound and hard-nosed imagery gives them a mysterious sheen, but the duo have grounded themselves via booming production, and a sonorous verbal presence, coupled with their willingness to fuck you up. Their chest-beating bravado is explosive on “IDGAF (Prod. THZ)”,

Eddy Mann: “Simple Things” will leave you breathless and in a state of euphoria

At first as a musician, I created music, then as an A&R executive I challenged it, now as a music reviewer, I explore it.  Of the three, the latter is the most difficult. Criticizing or appraising somebody else’s creation is no easy task. Enjoying it is one thing, understanding it another, and translating it is even more arduous. The funny thing is, I’ve always hated describing music. It’s such a volatile and subjective art, that nobody should really have the authority or the presumptuous audacity to judge the level of enjoyment or emotion any one piece of music is capable

Kitson Lau: “Be By Your Side” – an expressive paean to love’s transformative powers

Kitson Lau wears many hats – a musician, songwriter, singer and graphic designer, he is also a medical graduate. Initially without any musical background, Kitson became inspired by Norwegian record producer and DJ, Alan Walker. This passion drove him to learn music and song production. And soon, with dedication and focus Kitson Lau hit the top of the China Kanjian ING 10 Charts with his Mandopop albums. Since signing to Sony Music Entertainment Malaysia, Kitson has been encouraged to record English songs, so now he is making his official debut via Sony, with the song “Be By Your Side”, which

Earpiphany: “Ultraviolet Dreams and Other Songs” – multi-faceted emotions

Dan G.Hagerman aka Earpiphany is a songwriter, arranger, composer who writes many genres, including his latest pop-rock offering, “Ultraviolet Dreams”, done with Aubrey Whitfield, a talented female music producer from the U.K. who also does the vocals. The track is taken from the “Ultraviolet Dreams and Other Songs” EP. Dan lives near Los Angeles with his lovely Japanese wife of thirty-five years, Reiko, and his daughter, Holly. “We love Japan, sushi and Huskies!” affirms Hagerman. In any potential mythology built up around the music of Earpiphany on “Ultraviolet Dreams”, Whitfield may represent an irrepressibly sanguine voice and Hagerman the barbed

Emmanuel Dalmas – a natural ear for a good melody!

Emmanuel Dalmas is a multi-genre music composer from the South West of France. A company founder and high level executive in the scientific industry he started composing in late November 2016 as a weekend hobby, and continued feeling an intense growing pleasure in learning more and progressing in music composition. Dalmas has since been consolidating both his craft and catalog, with a series of single releases that move between Pop, Easy Listening, EDM, as well songs in his native French tongue. From his home studio Emmanuel produces instrumental and vocal tracks, engaging talented male and female voices to complete his

Anomalous Leaf: “Ellipsis” – delivers soundscapes you’ll remember a decade later

Irfan Azam, alias Anomalous Leaf, is the kind of artist that you think about in terms of scale. There is the sheer size of his songs –  the “Sojourner” mini-suite has a fifteen minute playing time – but also the size of the music’s scope and ambition on his latest album “Ellipsis”. The album gives you a sense of a landscape, but instead of just marching towards a vast horizon of sprawling sounds, it feels like the instrumentals are burrowing through layers of soil to discover the core of the earth, and the meaning of life itself.

The crescendos and climaxes of ambient rock are present, but just as often you will find yourself contemplating somber wisps of sound that ebb and flow between melody and dissonance. What may start like a whisper will grow and resonate as you dig your ears into it. The experience is not unlike taking a pause on a mountain hike and realizing just how many sounds there are in what seems like silence. You get the sense that Anomalous Leaf is searching for new paths to achieve his original goals.

For the most part, the songs feel segmented and self-contained, standalone compositions instead of pieces of an overall fabric. They return time again to distorted guitars that sometimes feel like echoes in a cave, other times like a crumbling landslide, while the drums and percussion are generally crystalline and precise. There’s a similar sense of longing and a beautiful darkness at work here, too. It feels like exploring in the dark and coming upon cluster of diamonds that help light your way.

The music has plenty of momentum without being ‘driving’ in the usual sense of the word—it can be meditative and meandering, and sometimes, as on “Phaedrus”, transitions in aqueous slow motion with sounds that sparkle like fizzing water. There are also upbeat moments, like “Ring Road” which at first feels amorphous and ambient before suddenly catching fire. When it does finally open up, the effect is stunning.

In an album full of eclectic stylistic ambition, perhaps no track encompasses the entire experience better than ‘“Sojourner”. The song, which is divided into 7 parts, feels like a breath of new life, shimmering with gorgeous piano notes and jangling guitar passages while pirouetting in a light, spacey atmosphere that is immersive but not oppressive.

It’s difficult when listening to “Ellipsis” not to think of images that could go with these songs. Instead of making instrumental music for silly moments in sports events, Anomalous Leaf delivers soundscapes you’ll remember a decade later, because you have locked the music onto an image in your mind, stumbling first kisses while waking from a comforting dream, that sad moment when you first hear a friend has died, or maybe walks alone at night, watching the constellations and pondering the meaning of it all. These songs feel personal no matter how you interpret them. They tug at important moments and allude to others.

“Ellipsis” is a quietly masterful and emotionally rich work. It contains a potpourri of  sounds that ultimately will accompany you while watching from a distance, but paying more attention to the person next to you, than those dark clouds rising overhead.

This is the eighth album released by North Carolina-based musical studio artist Irfan Azam, alias Anomalous Leaf, and also features the now deceased Matt Oberst, who, in his heart-wrenching last studio performance (recorded in the late of March 2016), lent his beautifully dissonant guitar phrasings to Sojourner (parts V-VII) and a dash of finesse on an early version of Ring Road (catch the bonus track). Matt passed away soon after the time of these recordings.


Website:
http://music.anomalousleaf.com

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Stores:
iTunes: http://itun.es/i67p6WY
Google Play: http://bit.ly/2nThLSp
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Anomalous-Leaf/e/B009IZ3AKU/

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