Fitzsimon & Brogan: “Big Blue World” – a full, punchy pop sound!

Fitzsimon & Brogan is a musical project based in London, whose creators therefore logically are songwriter Neil Fitzsimon, and vocalist Bee Brogan. The two setup their songwriting and production to produce, what they describe as “pure pop for now people.” Both were previously in a band called Pretty Blue Gun who featured guests musicians such as members of The Art of Noise, Dave Bronze (Eric Clapton’s bass player), Tobias Boshell (Moody Blues) and Pip Williams, who played guitar on the Walker Brothers’ track, ‘No Regrets’.  The two critically acclaimed albums were produced by Pat Collier, who produced Katrina and the

Lord Conrad: “Only You” – a journey through sound, emotion and introspection

Italian DJ, producer and model Lord Conrad, continues his prolific run with a series of acclaimed crossover hits like “Touch the Sky”, “Day After Day”, “1 Minute” and “Fight Till The End”. Lord Conrad has made it so far since his introduction to the music scene with his first release. With his innovative sound that only he can perfect, his reception is steadily growing, to beyond the strongest communication devices on the planet. Now with the release of his brand new track, “Only You”, the producer once again takes the music world by storm. His sound has drastically improved through the years, and it

Arush Dayal is a triple threat!

With a career spanning acting, singing, and writing, Arush Dayal is a triple threat. Originally hailing from India, Arush has seen a wide swath of the globe on his quest to hone his craft. He has studied at prestigious acting programs across the world including the Acting Program at the International Academy of Film and Television in Hong Kong and the One Year Conservatory at T Schreiber Studio in New York. Meisner Technique, Acting for the Camera and Commercial Acting are all facets of the industry Arush has studied in depth. He continues to perform both onstage and in front

The Frost: “Keep It Real” – There’s a classiness to this!

The Frost is a multi-genre group comprised of Leah Evans (Vocals) and Christian Gratz (Guitar, Piano). Located in Pennsylvania, their brand new single “Keep It Real” was released on December 7.  The duo emerge at a time when the ranks of sophisticated pop contenders seemed to have disappeared on a daily basis. Simultaneously chic and very creative, they thrive on the considerable charm of lead singer Evans, with her smooth chocolate voice, the instrumental talents of Gratz, as well as the pair’s impressive abilities as a songwriting unit. An absolute stand-out aspect of the new song is the way it’s

Forest Robots: “Timberline and Mountain Crest” – Inspired by natural landscapes

Let’s start of by saying that Fran Dominguez aka Forest Robots is a master at producing chilled out electronic music with heavy beats, and lots of orchestral instrumentation thrown in the mix. To call it electronic music almost seems unfair, as it implies this is music made by machines. Yes, I realize he is called Forest Robots, but this could not be further from the truth, as Dominguez’s music is pumping with life and human emotion. His latest album “Timberline and Mountain Crest” showcases 10 tracks of stunning depth, the kind of album you just throw the headphones on, turn

Edward St. Martin: “Lullaby” – blur the lines between savvy pop stylings and hard hitting kinetic soundscaping

Hailing from San Diego, Edward St. Martin has a background in film composition and classical music. His most recent single is “Lullaby”. Expectations met, superseded and immediately I hit replay. This track is going round again and I’m not the only one within ear shot of my stereo who is pleased about it. The easy laid back crossover Pop/EDM groove take is not unexpected, as I had already read that St. Martin was one for mellow tones combined with pop and soul vibes. But this track has another key element which makes a record of this nature standout. Intelligence. This

Katiah One: “Tail Spin” – an evolving, audacious artist

Soon releasing debut first EP “A Whole Lotta Water Works”, Katiah One is an artist raised on the Upper West Side of New York City. His mission is changing the common perception of the average rapper. Katiah draws inspiration from many genres including R&B and Rock, while his favorite artists include Freddy Mercury, Sam Cooke and Issac Brock.  On his latest single “Tail Spin”, taken off the aforementioned EP, Katiah deals with the deep issues of existentialism, or simply put, the meaning of a human being’s existence. Sure his talking ‘black’ talk, but you can’t go there without understanding the

Alisa Chirco: “Give Me More” – bench marked with confidence!

Alisa Chirco sure isn’t shy about revealing what’s on her mind, on her brand new single “Give Me More”, the follow up to her almost gothic-like pop ballad “Box”. Alisa sounds passionate, wanting and determined, in a driven rock song that is an anthem for empowered women. Her music here is very strong, has meaning, and is legit. The track shows that she is learning to emote in a more visceral and arguably more demonstrative way. Alisa has now escalated to being a rock chic with an attitude and bold open-confessional lyrics. A sensible direction for any reinvention is maturity, and

Roger Cole & Paul Barrere: “Old Folks Boogie Redeux” – true to their sound!

“Ya know that you’re over the hill, when your mind makes a promise that your body can’t fill!”, this is the line that inspired Paul Barrere to write the original version of the “Old Folks Boogie”, which would subsequently feature on the 1977 Little Feat record “Time Loves a Hero”. The citation came from a line Paul’s dad – an actor at the time – picked up at a vaudeville theater. He would often sing it around the house, so eventually Paul got hooked turned it into a song. For some time, Paul’s partner over at Better Daze Records, Roger

Glorious: “Move” – throbs with club energy

Pop singer, Livetronica drummer, producer and songwriter, Glorious, is a graduate of Berklee College of Music, who has been making music since she started playing drums at the age of three. Named after her grandmother Glorious Cooper, Glorious recently unveiled her single “Move”. In an increasingly crowded field of urban pop artists, you may be wondering what makes Glorious worth your time. To be sure, she boasts a lot of the qualities that her peers also bring to the table. Her song is outlined with an exquisite beat, her vocals are mesmerizing, and her persona appears spectacularly captivating. Without close

Pastobal: “Nature” is absolutely gorgeous!

The French project Pastobal, started out as a duo and has grown into a small crew committed to serving their ideals. Dedicated to rock, folk and love, the group has two EP recordings under their belt – “My Head” released in 2014, and “EP# 2” released in 2016. The following year saw the band drop their full length trilingual album, entitled “Logon Calling”. Now in December 2018. Pastobal release their brand new, English-language EP, “Nature”. This new recording does an admirable job mixing the sounds of Pastobal to create a wide-ranging kaleidoscope of folk-rock references. The best songs have an infectious, building energy, as well as distinct, though familiar, points of view.

Pastobal is a band for those who like their folk served with a dose of sometimes cryptic and poetic lyrics, quirky riffs and thoughtful harmonies, rather than the loads of banjo and pop hooks that come from their peers and contemporaries. “Nature” showcases the musicianship and creativity that has seen them labelled the next big indie thing to come out of France.

The use of vocals, acoustic guitars, and strings all woven together is impressive, and there are just enough upbeat drums to keep the record rolling along.  The upbeat opening track, “Did You Know?” speaks about how different species of animals work together to increase the quality of life.

The song has a full instrumentation arrangement that makes it sonically satisfying. A jangly acoustic guitar revs it up initially before being joined by driving percussion, bass and strings. The members of Pastobal fully throw themselves behind the music, and it is easily noticeable that there is something particularly unique about their sound.

The way the organic instruments expertly complement each other shows the band’s musicianship both collectively and individually. Pastobal has branched out to incorporate diverse elements into their music that distinguishes the band safely. This versatility could have lent itself to a disorganized EP, but instead the band has constructed a well-ordered album.

In its simplicity, “Do You Want?” is even more sprawling and adventurous than the opening track, reminding me a bit of early R.E.M. infused with a very slight Talking Heads flavor. Diversely “No Time” incorporates overdriven psychedelic guitars in its more aggressive and intense soundscape that is confrontational and angry, in essence.

“Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone. Prevent the dog from barking with a juicy bone. Silence the pianos and with muffled drum. Bring out the coffin, let the mourners come,” are the epic opening lines of the poem by Wystan Hugh Auden, and the basis on which Pastobal construct the  poignant song, “Funeral Blues”, which simultaneously desolating and uplifting.

“Funeral Blues” is absolutely gorgeous, and probably the best, most accessible track on the EP. It features a finger-picked guitar line, underscored by subtle bass counterpoints, excellent drumming and captivating vocals.

“Let’s Dance” exceeds in excess with more than 20 minutes of acid-styled funk driven by angular guitar riffs, thumping bass lines and busy percussion. It is undoubtedly the biggest musical departure the band take on the EP, and obviously a warning from Pastobal that they are not to be simply boxed into the folk-rock category.

With songs that are crafted meticulously, “Nature” succeeds in presenting its themes and sonic choices with remarkable clarity. It has both its rousing moments, as well as moments of quieter beauty. Moreover there seems to be more power in their music which benefits by the increased production values.

As an entry point for new listeners or something for existing fans to enjoy, there’s something on the “Nature” EP that any listener is sure to enjoy. The Pastobal crew currently consists of Pastobal (Music & Lyrics), Angus Schieber (Drum & Mix), Jehan Saison (Cello), Clo’B (Photo) and Stef Bimery (Englishman).

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