Exit 22 Music: “Last Goodbye” – one of the finest musical acts in the pop-rock underground

It seems almost impossible that an artist that has been around this long – 20 years in Chris Calamera’s case, can keep making records that stand up among the best that he has ever done. Let’s be clear: “Last Goodbye” is a great song. It’s poppy, with a big melody and an insistent rock rhythm, and it’s catchy as hell. Sounds like authentic Exit 22 Music to me. This is pure Calamera from his pop-rock songwriting style standpoint, and pure Exit 22 Music, considering the breathtaking vocals and high production-value quotient. The perfect, power-pop formula. Exit 22 Music has been keeping

Lake of the Lion embodies embody emotive sounds and textures

Lake of the Lion is the brand name and moniker for Luxembourg music composer and producer, Daniel Kohnen, who is steadily building up his catalog and increasing his fan-base with regular new releases. In recent years, ambient instrumental and soundtrack scores have been following a certain trend. Composers seem to have this motif of creating overblown pieces with harsh lead instruments blasting out from the blue and background strings creating suspense with their melodies. Sure it was fun for a while, but within that little span of time listeners were just begging for it to stop because composers had this

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

Last Time Only: “Anything For You” traverses his adventures with life, loss and heartbreak

Jared Woodruff aka Last Time Only needs no introduction around these parts. Countless live performances, 3 EP releases and other contributions have secured Woodruff’s permanent position as underground acoustic punk rock royalty. Those more familiar with his Last Time Only credentials will surely be turned on the raw, largely acoustic sound of his newest solo EP, Anything For You”, which also happens to be the most outspoken of his career. It’s personal, emotional and the perfect record to usher in the upcoming heat of the summer months.

Jared Woodruff is an exceptional lyricist and Anything For You” contains some of his finest, and darkest, work to date. Unraveling all of the personal relationship issues one could possibly have experienced in a lifetime – there are few moments of hope or happiness to be found here, but plenty of nostalgia, loss, regret and anger.

Opener and title track Anything For You” sets the mood as Woodruff intones, “And I don’t even know how all this started, but then I looked up and I saw your face for the first time. And it was then that I was hooked…” This beautiful but ‘ill-fated’ moment probably signals the start of the narrator’s experiences, which is unveiled on each subsequent track.

From there on the EP traverses his adventures with life, loss and heartbreak, occasionally picking up the tempo or incorporating a few other instrument yet always relying on the foundation of his visceral voice, acoustic guitar and very sharply pointed lyrics.

The songs flow so well that it’s difficult to define standout moments, though upbeat tracks “Leave The Gun, Take His Heart”, “Colorado Night Skies” and “Self Destruction 2.0” provide a welcome sonic dichotomy to their brooding lyricism, while “Over You” offers the catchiest chorus found on the EP.

Ultimately, the poignancy and sheer power of Last Time Only’s performances is brought to a head on closer, “I See Regret In My Future” with Woodruff singing the line, “Isn’t it time we analyze our lives, to see what is real and what are lies?” strongly strumming his guitar, until the scene fades to black.

The record serves as the perfect vessel for channeling those complex, and often painful, moments in life, when it seems that the train of despair never stops coming by your station. It’s not an easy or fun listen, but it’s a brilliant one, as Anything For You” will make you think and it will make you feel. It’s really hard to ask for much more from any recording.

With the release of this EP, Last Time Only could simply lay his hat on a bar-stool and call it a day. He could rest on his laurels and nap on the beach. But I know that Jared Woodruff will continue his highly charged musical life, showcasing his resolute voice, and ready to pass on his wisdom in coping with loss, change, and finding inspiration in a dark and dreary times.

OFFICIAL LINKS: WEBSITE – SOUNDCLOUD – FACEBOOK – TWITTER – YOUTUBE –REVERBNATION

About The Author

Reply