INTERVIEW: C.E.N. – the voice of the people

Born in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, and currently a resident of Dallas, Texas, C.E.N’s natural proficiency over poetry allowed him to produce meaningful and profound lyrics. Although he initially took the initiative to become a music artist for fame and fortune, he later realized that all he desires as a musician is to be respected and valued for the art he brings to the table. His music is deep lyrically and spiritually. Can you tell us a bit about where you come from and how you got started? C.E.N.: I was born in Oklahoma City, OK, and was raised in a

Hitrocker – “Project One” – breathtaking sound design!

Hitrocker is a German based producer who creates mainly within the EDM subgenres of House, Electro and Deep House. His first album, entitled “Project One” was released at the end of July, while “Project Two” is also out now. When I clicked on the playlist of “Project One”, I was met with song titles that were merely numbers – such as “Project 1.1” or “Project One.Four”. This falsely led me to expect generically themed instrumentals, simply meant to rock the dancefloor. Wrong. Well not totally. They do rock the dancefloor. But they also do a whole lot more. These are

Rashod Holmes Announces New Single ‘The One’

The soul singer relives how he met his wife and started his family on a tender new song. Rashod Holmes is known for bringing romance to life with his evocative voice, but he has never told as personal a story as the one he tells with his latest single. ‘The One’ is a true life love story that acknowledges the struggles and triumphs that go into building a long-lasting relationship. “I found the one for me” Rashod sings. “She is the girl of my dreams.” While Rashod is convinced that he has found the perfect partner, there is much more

Billy Ray Rock – “Get The Funk”- hitting up all the classic tenets of funk

Washington State Singer-Bassist, Billy Ray Rock, plays more than 10 instruments and produces and performs every instrument you hear in his music. From Rock to R&B and Dance, Billy delivers them all. His single “Get The Funk”, simply adds another delicious flavor to his sonic menu. His unearthly bass chops, resonant vocal wobble and inner funk DNA is scorching hot, while it straddles the genre’s trademark grooves. Blaring horns and slapping drums accompanies the party-styled adlibs, as the track treads its momentum. If you’re looking the glossy high-tech dance-club funk perpetuated by bands like Chromeo, then this is not the

Vincent Krennerich – “Verlassene Stadt” – plenty of delicate aural color

Vincent Krennerich is a composer, songwriter and pianist from Germany. The artist, who has featured on our pages before, has released his double-side single, entitled, “Verlassene Stadt”, which translated, would mean ‘abandoned city’. The second track, contained in this set, is called “Morgengrauen”, which in English, would mean ‘dawn’. However if you heard these compositions, there would be no need to translate them, as Krennerich’s music describes itself rather poignantly. Though stripped back and basic solo piano, the key to the success of both these recordings, is the propensity Vincent Krennerich has in composing subtly fine melodies. Both tracks have

Hybrid Blues fuses stellar musicianship, heartfelt songwriting and soul-stirring vocals

Out of Aotearoa (New Zealand), Hybrid Blues are a 4-piece band, made up of Mike Everard (guitars, vocals), Adam Pendred (bass), Mark Schaumann (drums) and award winning front-man, singer-songwriter Roy Hudson. The band signed to SGNB Records USA, has just released its self-titled blues-based album. No two songs on “Hybrid Blues” sound the same. The record not only showcases Roy’s abilities as a singer and a songwriter, but also highlights the wide range of influences that have impacted on his music. The album takes you in so many different dynamic directions that it can feel a little dizzying, while the

Marshall Artz Productionz – “Go Missing” ft. SeanQ – is incredibly hypnotic, with crystal-clear production

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Evie Calabasas – “STARGIRL” – strong, sensitive vocals and soul-baring songs

Evie Calabasas is a 20 year-old singer and songwriter. She started playing guitar at the age of 6 and started singing at 15 years old. After attempting to be part of band on numerous occasions, Evie finally opted for a solo career. Her first solo project, the 3 track EP “STARGIRL”, has its title inspired by the first song she ever played live.  It is a tempered and exceptional record. It shakes, rattles and rolls with minimal, almost absent percussion, a dominantly strummed acoustic guitar and occasional keyboard interludes. Above all, is Evie Calabasas’ voice, which delivers an untethered, sweetly

Baby Lu releases her first single “Bad Stuff” on all major streaming platforms

Luna Elisabeth Jezebel Pool aka Baby Lu was born on February 5, 2002 in Frankfurt, Germany. Lu began singing and songwriting in her early teens and went to several music auditions where she was rejected because of her young age. She then decided to start making her own music after graduation in 2018. As she didn’t have any connections yet she wasn’t able to produce something properly. In 2019 she met the producer Austin Asiegbu (2aBeaatz) and started to produce her own songs. Pool has cited Adele and Demi Lovato as her major musical influences. Her other influences or inspirations

Where There’s A Will – There’s A Way!

Where There’s A Will – There’s A Way! That’s the way Will Ready lives his life, no excuses, no regrets, and no looking back. Just like fine wine, Will has gotten better with time. With over 25 years in the music business, 7 albums and numerous tours, Will is ready. Singer/Songwriter/Producer and Showman, Will is the complete entertainer. His blend of R&B, Soul, Jazz has earned him welcoming fans in Europe, Japan and The Caribbean. Will attributes his silky seductive style to his love of R&B, Soul greats like, Charlie Wilson, Maze Featuring Frankie Beverly, Ron Isley, Marvin Gaye, Luther

Neighborhood Goliath: “Between Satellites & Settling” – is an amazingly diverse and emotionally satisfying EP

Neighborhood Goliath is the brainchild of Trevor Dion Nicholas (Lead Vocalist/Rhythm Guitar/Keyboards/Lyrics) and J.S.T. Andrews (Bass Guitar/Saxophone). Both men pull in outlandish and overlapping influences to form their unique version of Alternative Indie R&B. Musical experimentation began between the two in 2011 and expanded to working with guitarists Tim Samples, Matt Robertson, Brian Ruppenkamp and Gary Lee. Contributing percussionist Joey Rauso and E. Cole helped to shape a musical experience that is surprising yet familiar. Trevor’s powerful voice is blended with various live vocal samples, created with the aid of additional vocalists Shauna Alexander, Bryan Demond Williams and Lauren Reynolds.

The EP cover artwork

The EP cover artwork

“Between Satellites & Settling”, the debut EP by Neighborhood Goliath, is an amazingly diverse and emotionally satisfying album. “Animal” opens the EP with an infectious mid-tempo rocker (You’ll hit the repeat button for this one, multiple times in a row). “Waking Life” follows with an ominously, apocalyptic lyrical theme, dealt out with the intense line, “Up to my neck in what I’ve strangled out of you.”

Right from the start, it is clear the great strength of Neighborhood Goliath is that their music, lyrics, instrumentation and vocals all come together to communicate strong emotions such as longing, pain, vulnerability and torment, sprinkled with faint desires of hope and redemption; sometimes all within the same song. Just how many contrasting emotions can you read through the four lines from the track, “Animal”:

“I can’t think under such duress
So I sink my teeth into happiness
Now there’s a tear in your wedding dress
If I’m lonely I’m doing it wrong”

Throughout the EP, the impression is that these guys sound like they are all on the same creative wavelength. Their songs are so strongly written, so self-assured, so poetic, whimsical and multi-layered, that the formula would just not work if somebody was even slightly out of sync with the overall Neighborhood Goliath creative ethic.

Trevor Dion Nicholas and J.S.T. Andrews

Trevor Dion Nicholas and J.S.T. Andrews

I rant against the corporate nature of music today, as much as anyone. I hate the direction that it has gone in and the complete unoriginality of virtually all formats. Nonetheless, it is still possible to pick and choose a few fine artists and albums out of the whole mess. Neighborhood Goliath is certainly one of them. They make a wonderful change from the poppy, and manufactured groups that occupy the charts these days.

You only have to listen to the poetic brilliance and chord progressions of “Cemetery Charm”, the atmospheric, ever-building rhythmic tempo “Of Atoms & Eve”, or the sheer rock power of “Suburban Genius”, to understand that this is no ordinary band. Over and above the excellent instrumentation, J.S.T. Andrews’ rampant bass lines, the arrangements and production aspects, what truly sets Neighborhood Goliath apart, is their superb songwriting and Trevor Dion Nicholas’ astoundingly unique vocal phrasing – as he switches between Rock, Soul and R&B intonations – between verse and chorus.

In navigating today’s music scene, with teenage divas and ageing balladeers, angry rappers and droning rockers, Neighborhood Goliath comes out with an EP that straddles the art of poetry and rhythm, rather majestically. And they wrap it up in gorgeous melodies awash with emotion. The bittersweet alt-rock of “Between Satellites & Settling” bleeds into powerfully sung, glowing guitar-based pledges that will bounce around your heart and head for days on end!

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