Matthew J Van Howe – “Emergent Narrative” – a deluge of his sonic palette!

You could call this ambient, experimental, drone, avant-garde, cinematic or simply electronic music, the fact is “Emergent Narrative”, is so impactful it’s like it’s its own genre. It’s as if some new musical form has been created from retro synthwave sounds, and ultra-modern avant-garde motifs. I was stunned by the textures, and the moods that got stuck in my head, along with the intensity and dynamic depth. This is an album to hear again and again. Loud, raucous, serene, gentle, stretching, insistent, melodic, dissonant. It is a collection of 12 musical pieces with simple one-word titles. Meaning, the Chicago composer,

Andy Pett – “Back Again” turns hurt into art with great results on this song

Experience with adversity builds exemplary character and a spirit of resilience that allows artists to deliver great music. Their personal stories provides them with original ideas and profound insight to rap or sing about, creating a relatable feeling of vulnerability that fans emotionally connect with. Many prominent artists from today’s culture have battled through adversity to become widely accepted and beloved. There is an interesting argument – and quite a lot of statistics lean toward this theory – that adversity is necessary to become successful.  The bottom line seems to be that many artists lack the ambition to succeed because

Onicks – “High” is a deep slow-burn

With its enigmatic beauty, intoxicating depth and intense emotion, the follow-up to “High” is one of the most intriguing records of the year so far. The lyrics are elliptical and fragmented, touching on addiction, identity and eroticism. The track’s mood is druggy, dislocated and tortured – there are frequent metaphoric references to substances and psychedelics – the shape-shifting structure of “High” will capture your attention from top to bottom. Snapshots of elusive love and fleeting lust are scattered throughout – for whom, or for what, is where you need to read between the lines. Born and raised in the San

Midwest Hiphop duo Strangers Of Necessity drop their new single “Abundance”

Strangers Of Necessity are an American hip-hop duo, based in the Midwest, consisting of prolific producer, CoryaYo and veteran lyricist, Fooch the MC. They linked via Twitter and quickly became friends, sparking an immediate chemistry and need to make quality music together; hence the name Strangers Of Necessity. They instantly began recording music and doing shows locally, generating a nice buzz in the area. Their sound is best described as a fresh take on that golden era of hip-hop, blending tasteful jazz and soul samples, crisp snares, boomy kicks on wonky patterns with a soulful delivery, dense schemes and potent

Kilo M.O.E. – ‘Fly G’z and Palm Treez’ – serves as the perfect canvas for the rapper’s elite lyricism

The Baltimore-based producer, songwriter, rapper, Kilo M.O.E.’s evolution over his past three albums has been inspiring to see. I’ll always admire artists who push themselves creatively, and that’s exactly what, Kilo M.O.E. has done on his fourth studio album, ‘Fly G’z and Palm Treez’, and it pays off in leaps and bounds. Each instrumental is rich and developed, serving as the perfect canvas for the rapper’s elite lyricism. Something that this recording and Kilo M.O.E.’s recent albums have done well is allow him the freedom to rap for the sake of his craft within the confines of the album’s larger

Jim Wyly – “You Took Me” – It’s rhythmically tight, warm and edgy

Texas singer songwriter Jim Wyly is back with another soul-stirring track from his “The Artisan” album. Over 40 years deep into his craft, the Austin troubadour sounds like a home-cooked meal. He deals out comfort food for the head, heart, and soul. All of this serves his finely drawn guitar lines, bourbon-stained-like vocals, and funky acoustic-driven grooves as thick as molasses. A subtle blend of blues, country, folk and southern rock runs right down the middle of “You Took Me”. “Musicians’ musician” is an overused term. Why wouldn’t anyone with two good ears appreciate Jim Wyly? As Jim doesn’t cater

Hanen Release Brand New Video For The Song “Breathe”

It’s never been easier for artists to stay independent. Of course you can get good music producers, good visual directors for videos, good rappers and good singers to feature on your track without a great budget, but you have to search the world over to find deals you can afford, or convince creatives to work with you. Texas born artist, now living in the LA area, Hanen, somehow got it all together on his latest track called “Breathe”. He sings soulfully and raps with an urban edge all by himself, backed by an atmospheric slow-burning, and ear-warming beat made by

Angry B – “Hey Corona! (Nice to Meet Ya)” – reflects the realities with a good dose of wit

On his latest single, “Hey Corona! (Nice to Meet Ya)”, underground music hobbyist Angry B pinned his rap skills and dark wit, to the sounds of mainstream pop and a funky EDM template. He blurs the lines between genres with the top of the charts — and only the top — in his sights. As can be deciphered from the song title, Angry B pulls his aspirations from the dramatic Covid-19 disease hitting mankind across the globe. “It’s one of the most critical situations we’ve had and there will be a lot of sad stories connected with it,” says Angry

Izzie’s Caravan – “Leo’s Guitar EP” – an understated guitar virtuoso

On the recording, “Leo’s Guitar EP”, Izzie’s Caravan and his guitar conspire to use every single crayon within the blue color box to deliver one of the best underground independent studio blues releases I’ve heard this year. Among others, Izzie takes his cue from greats such as Lightnin’ Hopkins, Buddy Guy, John Lee Hooker, and Eric Clapton. So you can expect a wide and wholesome finger bending spectrum of sounds. The aforementioned guitar heroes are points of reference, not simple deductions for resemblance. The opening song, “Two’s In The Bush”, has a highway drive, and jangly timbre that’s upbeat and

‘Mind Blown’ – The Video and Brand New Single by EyeKonic

EyeKonik is an artist with a focus on creating punchy and appealing pop music with a personal twist. Recently, he released a brand new single called ‘Mind Blown’. What really makes this track stands out is definitely the fact that it’s so well produced, and the performance value is excellent as well. EyeKonik sings with passion and intensity, and the artist’s vocals soar through the atmospheric melodies and punchy tones of this mix. Fans of artists as diverse as Mac Miller, Michael Jackson, Prince, and Eminem are definitely going to enjoy this amazing single. Check out the newly released music

ELMONT – where original melodic imagination and structure flow

Elmont, the critically acclaimed four-piece alternative band from North Dallas, made up of John Muhl (guitars, vocals), Jamie Stafford (bass, keys, vocals), Chance Day (guitars) and Chris Amerson (Drums). The band launched their assault on the industry with their debut single, “Home” in 2016, are finally back with their brand new 6 track EP, entitled simply…“ELMONT”. The project was recorded and mixed at Fifty 50 Studios in downtown Dallas, TX and mastered at Turtle Tone Studio in NY. Within four weeks of their CMJ radio campaign, with the support and direction of respected Tinderbox Music, the album is already on 70 college radio stations. Elmont released the record on September 2nd, 2017 and are set to follow up with a tour.

Expectancy will always spoil a party, as they say. Hype will just as often bury a band and embarrass gushing music critics as it will justly sum up the exciting nature of great new music. The deciding factor is, of course, whether or not such an overtly approved outfit are any good. In the case of Elmont, it just so happens that the music in question is every bit as good as it’s made out to be, and a whole lot better than you expected.

The EP’s uncanny first strains comes from its lead single, “Waiting on a Phone Call” with galloping layers of sparkling guitars which arrive like a sweeping breeze, pulling Muhl’s voice into the honeyed comfort of his sweet spot.

Fundamentally, Elmont’s approach takes the popular song back 40 years to a point where music sounded uncomplicated, fresh, simple and beautiful. From there on, they work their way back to a modern sound and production, to reach a vibrant pinnacle of instrumentation and intricate vocal harmonies.

The second track, “Falling”, is the epitome of the above statement. With its impressionistic lyrics and unforced melody, it builds to dynamic choruses and captivating clean guitar strums, gripping the listener with its choral chants, and embellished with a tasteful guitar solo.

Elmont is a welcome arrival representing music, in the modern day, as an outlet just to be emotional – a place where original but melodic imagination and structure can flow. Rich and deftly arranged, this is a confident and crafted set of songs.

“Nothing in Particular” sees the slightly dirtier guitars lead this softly soaring track through pleasant musical imagery to match the pristine beauty of its lyrics and groove. On the slower, “Apartment”, John Muhl more distinctively holds the lead singing position and does so with supreme confidence and grace.

This song works as excellent introduction to the band’s pride in clear vocals and rich but subtle harmonization. Once again, the Elmont tread the line between a bare boned jam and luscious choruses perfectly; nothing feels contrived and there is an excellent balance of buildup and reward.

“Drama Queen” is a heart-warming splendor of sound that unabashedly moves spirits and moods, harking back to the reverie in the depths of the glory days of Americana music. The band’s debut single, “Home” closes the EP, with its modern indie rock flavor.  It’s one of the tracks that resonates more emotionally on the recording due to its lyrical play on nostalgia – a recurring human condition that never leaves people untouched.

When a band comes along with a sound that is classic but uniquely new, comparisons are always tempting. The fact is, this EP is timeless, eloquent and understated perfection. It is art without pretension. Simply stunning melodies, harmonies and musical accompaniment. You can almost anticipate that much greater things are ahead for Elmont. Highly Recommended!

OFFICIAL LINKS: WEBSITE   – SPOTIFY – FACEBOOK – INSTAGRAM 

Elmont | Waiting on a Phone Call from fifty50studios on Vimeo.

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