Berani – “Cut And Taste” strikes an incredible balance of disparate elements

Berani is an electronic beat maker with a diverse sound spectrum and a tendency to produce bouncing rhythms or spacious and relaxing aural experiences. In a short time span, this emerging artist out of Byron Bay in Australia, has discerning music fans and casual listeners paying attention. The sound design throughout his latest single “Cut And Taste” is what we’ve come to expect from this creative top tier producer: popping percussion, basslines that melt like butter and a healthy dose of twisted horns to make everything bump in a soul-like fashion. Sprinkled around the track are sonic effects that keep

EsZ – “Liquor & Emotions” – introspective and emotional

Hip-hop has been cranking out bangers and high energy anthems for decades, but the average genre historian is well aware that dark or emotional thoughts on a chill backdrop is not a foreign concept for the game. After all, profound moodiness feels rather natural for a culture that grew out of urban plight and the trauma of purposely disenfranchised people. It makes sense that at least some mellow tunes in the genre, reflect deep-thinking speculation, in what artist EsZ, describes as thoughts on “life, growth and fake friends” in his track “Liquor & Emotions”. The song is a drunk text

Quad – “Love” embellishes each track with his personal revelations

Based in the south of Chicago, Quad started making music when he was around 14 years old and started taking it artistically seriously two years later. He produces, records, mixes and masters, using only a Blue Yeti microphone and FL Studios. So far Quad has written over 300 songs and released 1 EP, 1 Album and 8 singles. Currently training as an audio engineer at SAE University in Chicago, Quad explained that his latest album “Love” describes his personal understanding of the sentiment. The album “Love” was written and recorded over the course of 2 months after Quad was electrocuted

Acemattz & Bipha shine on “Tshanana”

Watching Acemattz & Bipha perform in any of their videos is like watching friends realize they’re onto something big time. They are accomplished rappers individually, on their own terms, and as collaborators, as a unit, their styles gel perfectly. They’re not just comfortable performing together—they are feeding off of each other, refusing to be one-upped, beaming and grinning and head-bobbing as they take turns impressing one another. By the end of each of their performances, their formation into a real show-stopping combination seems inevitable. In the new wave rap scene, there is plenty of talent to go around, Acemattz &

FuzzKill – “The Get Better” reaches all the expected heights!

FuzzKill is a four-piece rock band that started in Boston, MA. Introduced to one another through musical theatre, the band’s sound is firmly rooted in early 2000’s pop-punk influences. They released their debut studio album, “Happen”, in early 2019, and their sophomore album, “The Get Better”, just dropped on September 19th 2020. We have all heard the biggest punk bands of the 90’s and early 00’s. Their music mainly consisted of driving drums, distorted pop-punk guitar work and a set of memorable lyrics to go with the angst-filled high energy vocals. Today punk bands are a rarity, and any good

Dan Friese – ‘Jane Songs’ is something to be treasured!

Dan Friese is an Oregon-based songwriter, performer and multi-instrumentalist. In April of 2020, he released his debut EP, ‘Happiness’, a collection of self-reflective psychedelic indie-folk tracks. His first full-length effort, ‘Jane Songs’, was released on September 18th, and is available on all major platforms, along with the singles “Streetlight” and “I Can’t Say”. There’s a lot to appreciate on the new album, and Dan’s voice is arguably the most attractive aspect. Moreover, his vocals are often enhanced by inspiring songwriting and raw emotion, not to mention a wealth of down to earth acoustic guitar strumming. Dan Friese has an organic,

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

Kev Scott – “Exhausted Fantasies” develops a winning blend of alternative folk-rock arrangements

UK artist Kev Scott returns with a fourth studio album, “Exhausted Fantasies” (2020). Kev is joined by recording band The Cherished Times, formed by a regular number of musicians and singers who have performed with him. The long term collaborators include, Chris Holland (bass, string arrangements and production), and Steve Pellatt (drums), who along with Kev Scott (vocals, guitars and piano) form the backbone of the band. Quite frankly, a sign of a true artist is when one album transcends the previous one, and that is the case here. Kev Scott’s previous albums are all outstanding, but this…..this one is beyond excellent. The set explodes with force, packing a wallop in the early tracks and remaining strong throughout the set.

Photos courtesy of Samantha Scott

Led by the musically charismatic and literate Kev Scott, The Cherished Times develop a winning blend of alternative folk-rock arrangements and instantly catchy choruses, invoking the spirit of many of America’s musical greats. Scott is a songwriter capable of real, revelatory emotional depth, without the usual melodrama.

From the opening track, “Carry You”, you’ll find all of the required elements of a prototypical Kev Scott song here: an organic arrangement, affecting lyrics, and a singular vocal performance from Scott that harnesses only the best parts of his heartfelt delivery.

Scott’s voice aside, the album’s flair for kickass arrangements is helped along in equal part by the production work and the band’s all-round gritty performances. All of which can be savored on the guitar-driven “I Guess I’m Longin”.  In the scenes The Cherished Times conjure, melancholy is never too far away, as Kev Scott grapples with woes both private and interpersonal.

 Scott uses the record’s most powerful moments as a showcase for his honest, hard-earned confessionalism on songs like “Each One Has A Story”, and the brilliantly arranged “Love Let Me Know” which features stunning layers of backing vocals and harmonies.

“Mama Built A Wall” fuses a lyrically rich mid-tempo ballad with long forgotten sonic treasures that can only be found in resonating organic instrumentation. Most of the tracks on this album contain strong vocal harmonies and memorable melodies, making for a solid collection of songs which should assure that this is Kev Scott’s most accessible album ever.

The Album Cover

“Jesus In The Window” builds into a very pleasant and powerfully melodic listen with stream-of-consciousness lyrics which are at once intense yet relaxed and features some more great harmonies.

The introspective “Dear Mr Nixon” with its slowly strummed, twangy guitars and banjos, blend with some great keyboards to complete an astutely attentive song. Simple and complex at the same time, “A Lifetime Or More” uses its incessant bluesy pulse as a concrete path for Kev Scott and his expressive vocal meanderings. Whatever descriptors you use to define its sound, it has a timeless groove.

“Lovers and Fighters” comes with plenty of earthy grit and splashes of distortion and feedback to color the deeper negotiations of Scott’s narrative.  “Absolute Wonder” illustrates the power of Kev Scott’s voice when it escapes the introversion of its lower range and pushes upward to an emotional heave.

“Exhausted Fantasies” is an album that employs remarkable arrangements – both instrumental and vocal, while managing to focus with laser-like precision on our most raw emotions. Kev Scott is a talent with a rare blend of poet and musician. He clearly tapped deep into his abundant singer-songwriting talent to deliver these songs. Combined with The Cherished Times, the result is a chemistry immediately evident.

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