Tisabel: “GENRE HOPPING” bristles with energy and artistic audacity

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Lee Lee Lanea: “Basswhipped” resonates gloriously

Beats aren’t gendered. So why are we still in the dark ages when it comes to gender equality in the music studio? Women represent less than 5% of music producers and engineers. Yes, the music industry—like every industry on this patriarchal planet—is sexist. That is not news. But this means we’re missing out on a whole world of sounds, stories, and perspectives. Our culture has systematically ingrained this idea that technology is more of a man’s thing. Then of course there’s the fact that most men get freaked out when women do things better than them or even as good

Nothing But You, Nicky has released her latest single on Phoenix Records

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DownTown Mystic: “On E STREET” is filled with exceptional music!

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Mobb Boss: “Lil Lady” – the depth, perspective and hunger of a performer

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“All Your Bull” – A Politically motivated song from The Chile Colorado band

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Pastor Peter Unger Releases New Single “The Memories of God”

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King Draper: “1992” – simplistic in its premise but unquestionably real in its execution

You can’t write about underground or independent hip-hop and not write about King Draper. Or at least I seemingly can’t. For the past couple years the man’s been a nearly constant presence in my journalistic exploits. And now, I’m sitting down again to review his latest 11 track project, “1992”.  The King hits me with dope music and I write about it, and I’m more than happy with the arrangement. If you’ve peeped any of King Draper’s projects before, what you get from this project won’t surprise you. Draper with his soulful, jazzy, production and his smart anecdotes detailing tales

Edgler Vess: “Violet” – essential to your hip-hop collection

Every album that Edgler Vess releases, breathes with a distinct personality, each a shape-shifting assemblage of personage and programming that sounds more like a kind of miraculous hyperlinked sound collage than rap. His lyrical feats go unmatched for sheer idiosyncrasy and insight; beyond rap enthusiasts, many of his strongest supporters are probably writers and music heads. A master of the microphone and the beats, Vess has constantly swapped out his tools and themes, avoiding revision and instead choosing innovation. When Edgler Vess does what he does, he’s impossible to ignore. He’s profound, he’s impressive, and he’s damn entertaining. In short,

J-Hamz: “I Stack Up Remixes” – breaking free from the formulaic!

A medical doctor by day, J-Hamz is a classically trained pianist who produces electronic by night. J-Hamz has been featured in various music magazines and radio stations. His “I Stack Up” track was a Beatport Staff Pick as well as charting in the top ten electro house and big room charts. The EP “I’d Do Anything” also charted on Beatport and has received airplay on over a 100 college FM radio stations. J-Hamz together with Jaculator also received a nomination for the 2017 Edmonton Music Awards’ as DJ/Electronic Recording of the Year for the aforementioned EP. In his 6th release,

Anxious Giant: “Vaudeville EP” ties together in a rhythmic, soulful and harmonic way

Anxious Giant is a 3-piece band that developed out of the solo projects of west coast artist Joel Strauss, and is completed by bassist Jesse Visser and drummer Robb Ryan. The current music scene is a place of confusion. Rap and EDM music are ruling the charts, while R&B seems to be in a slight rut. Some bands are timidly bringing back punk music; others are trying to continue on the strength of alternative rock which has been dying for years. Then there is another less conspicuous legion of creatives who have begun molding the most disparate sounds and styles, in an attempt to move themselves, and popular music, out of its stagnant rut into a more progressive mindset, and among these is Anxious Giant with their latest release “Vaudeville EP”.

The cover artwork

The cover artwork

Anxious Giant is experimenting with the idea of combining Alternative, Indie, Folk and Art Rock together with a form of Psychedelic Pop. Ready to take on the title of ‘The Next Big Thing’, the most fascinating aspect of the band’s music is the high-toned voice of lead singer Joel Strauss.

Most often the center of every song, Joel’s voice powers through the hooks and crannies of the peculiarly attractive arrangements. His vocals tend to be robustly reverbed, giving it somewhat of a mystical feel while remaining one of the most unique voices in the current indie scene.

Anxious Giant is the perfect storm, if you will, of talent, courage and musicianship. They make music that touches the heart, body, and mind. Not many bands pull off this feat.

Anxious Giant’s music is quite eclectic, as the band refuse to be pigeonholed by any one ‘type’ of music. Joel Strauss on the other hand is an oddity, a near-genius, and a wordsmith, who has also been blessed with the voice of an angel.

The songs on the “Vaudeville EP” are very melodic with a lot of variety from tune to tune, yet everything ties together in a rhythmic, soulful and harmonic way. From the minute Anxious Giant’s kick off the 6 track recording with “Vaudeville”, you know you are listening to one of the most interestingly creative indie bands currently on the scene.

If there’s a song on here that shows Anxious Giant’s in full bloom, it’s “Lantern (featuring Bryan Steeksma)”. Not only is it the album’s most idiosyncratic song, but it’s the track that best reminds you how the band’s patience in song execution pays off.

Joel Strauss

Joel Strauss

A harmonic swell carefully and steadily builds throughout the track as the gorgeous lead and backing vocals are fortified by the luscious clean guitars and string orchestration. There’s such a sense of being at peace in the song’s slow ebb and flow that any melancholy tones that can be read into it serves nostalgia more than loss.

The band’s experimental bents are intact and treated as a light trimming to the meat-and-potatoes indie rock of “Seam” where e Strauss’ powerful vocals drive the gravelly mid-tempo gem. The percussive “Wildheart” has all the characteristics of Anxious Giant’s sweet-and-sour catalog; both lyrically and musically.

Like many of the band’s compositions, this also has subtle tractor beams, pulling you in over repeated listens. The electrified “Yellowstone Park” is delivered thickly rhythmic and melodic, over a bass-heavy and over-driven guitar progression, allowing for the band’s more harmonic interplay to stretch its legs during one of their most radio-ready songs.

In their inherent sullenness, Anxious Giant’s finds ways to create happy and sad vignettes that appeal to the hopeless romantic in ways that are nearly invasive. Joel Strauss remains adept at worming his melodies into the hidden folds of weary hearts, though simple platitudes are never the focus of his output, preferring esoteric lyrics and elusive thematic interpretations. Epic yet intimate, the “Vaudeville EP’s” slow-build grandiosity brings a whole new musical scenario to indie rock.

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