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Showing posts from September, 2017

ANDY SUZUKI AND THE METHOD

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This New York based band are a multi-cultural set of musicians, mainly fronted by half-Japanese, half-Jewish Andy Suzuki and Kozza Babumba, grandson of Grammy award winning Nigerian percussionist, Babatunde Olatunji.  These diverse backgrounds serve up a mix of styles, mainly but not tied to Folk, Blues and Rock!
The band formed at University when Andy met Kozza in 2005, in 2008 they enlisted violinist Jason Gorelick.  They released their first E.P. "300 Pianos" a year later and in 2012 released their second, "The Ghost Stories E.P.".  In 2011 they were selected as Manhattan's winner for WNYC's annual Battle of the Boroughs and also in 2012 they toured Brunei, sponsored by KFC and UBD FM.  The Brunei fans called themselves Methodons or Methodonnas! The band have been touring their shows around the US, building a solid fan club and have released their debut album, "Born Out Of Mischief", which was hotly anticipated by the music press and media.  Th…

JAZZ MINO

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Based in London, but originally from Manchester, Jazz Mino is a Pop Jazz busker/singer who regularly can be found busking with her ukulele around Piccadilly Circus!  With her catchy songs, infectious charm and unique dress style she has been enchanting audiences around the capital's music scene.
The music press started taking notice of this talented lady after her debut single "The Dorkiness in You" was released.  She has a growing fan base and won the KISS FM Music Cube Competition in 2014.   Jazz followed up this single with "Blue Eyes" and is intending to release her next in late 2015. Jazz has the music style of Imelda May with a little cute craziness of Miss Li.  A powerful soulful voice matches the quirkiness of her incredibly catchy songs.  The lady has not only captured the British hearts, she has promoted the art of busking as part of the "Sofia Welcomes The Streets Of London" project.  This meant TV time on Bulgarian media! The lady played a…

PUPPET REBELLION

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Puppet Rebellion are a five piece Indie band from Manchester, England.  Comprising of Oliver Davis (vocals), Danny Moss (drums), Paul Trochowski (guitar), James Halliwell (bass) and Craig Gibson (guitar), the band are currently releasing their 3rd E.P. in August 2015 entitled "Life Is In Your Hands".
Following the first two E.P.'s "Chemical Friends" and "No Means Yes" the band have been amassing a fan base and media attention, primarily with their live performances supporting the likes of Reverend And The Makers and Catfish And The Bottlemen around the Northwest and other UK venues. For me, I think the band are a mix of Razorlight and The Jam, although that's just my opinion.  There are elements of Classic Rock guitar riffs and some great melodies, like a really rocky version of Inspiral Carpets.  There is obviously a Manchester sound but the band are breaking the stereotypes of the likes of Oasis, for reasons beyond me, the new bands want to be l…

GINA ZAVALIS

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Gina is a singer-songwriter from Brooklyn, USA and her multi-faceted voice is making big waves on the music scene.  The radio and international press are buzzing about this new star as she has been named as an artist to watch in several media outlets.
 I heard the lady on ReverbNation singing the gorgeous song "I Am Here", it reminded me a little of Classical singer Katherine Jenkins, a big, very emotive, powerful voice.  She also has some Barbra Streisand/Olivia Newton-John vibes going on.  Praise indeed to be compared to the aforementioned great singers but this lady is one of a kind. A mix of Country/Pop/Classical styles has given her the strength in depth that not many singers possess.  Gina also has acting background appearing in roles as diverse as Eva Peron in "Evita", Rosali in "West Side Story" in regional and national productions.  A very talented lady she has also embraced social media, working extremely hard promoting herself on Twitter and Fa…

STONEFIELD

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Once upon a time in Victoria, there were 4 sisters who started playing in the family shed...
No, this isn't the start of a whimsical little children's story, it is actually the start of the Findlay sisters' journey into being a superb all-girl Rock band, blazing a trail through their native Australia and beyond.

With the sounds of Frank Zappa, Jimi Hendrix and Led Zeppelin the staple listening pleasure of the girls' parents, it was inevitable that if the girls were to embark on a music career it would be Rock based.  Hannah, the eldest Findlay daughter, then 15, took up drum lessons after being attracted to the kit they were given as a family present.  Soon, sisters Hannah (13) took up guitar and Sarah (12) took to the keyboards.  A band was forming.  Holly, then just 7 years old, maybe saw something was missing and asked her parents for a bass guitar!
On returning from the studio one day, Amy had the band's first song "Foreign Lover".  The obviously musi…

80s VINYL VERSUS TODAY'S CD - THE AGE OLD DEBATE!

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It's been argued time and time again, vinyl versus CD.  There are pros and cons for both formats.  As a buyer of both I can conduct the debate from my own personal experiences.  You, as a reader, may disagree, different generations will say different things but these are my own conclusions.

VS.
VINYL Be it the 7" single, the 12" multi-track versions, the 4 track E.P. or the album, the vinyl format was special. For the most part of the 80s vinyl's only opposition was the tape, or cassette.  In reality, you could "record" your vinyl albums onto cassettes to be an ideal companion playing in your car or your portable tape recorder.  Another advantage of the cassette was recording the Top 40 on Radio 1 in the UK on a Sunday night, desperately trying to pause when the DJ talked over the song! The fury today of people downloading music is a nonsense.  I taped the Top 40 to have all the songs I liked to listen to in one go and help me decide which singles I was going…

THE BRINDLEY PRESENTS THE FIREFLYS: STORYTELLERS! 13th June, 2015

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The Fireflys, for anyone living in a box over the last year are a great Runcorn band who I innocently found during my Music Journalism course assignment about Halton music when achieving my diploma.
I kind of owe a great deal to this band as they got me noticed as a serious reviewer and gave me the confidence to move on with this blog and beyond.  So the story goes, I review the band on this very blog, a few months later I contacted Music Insider Magazine in California, The Fireflys appeared in print.  My blog blossomed, these guys continually support me, so I continually support them. So when the chance arose to go to my first gig in years, almost on my doorstep at The Brindley, Runcorn it was a no-brainer.   Including The Spase and Chasing Infinity, who I'd also covered in print for a "Cheshire Rocks" article in InCheshire and Prestbury Living magazines, it had to be done!
I decided to drag my brother Mike along, thinking he would appreciate an Acoustic gig as he has p…

ANNA MELINE

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Anna Meline is a 21 year old singer songwriter and guitarist from Sweden.  Interested in music production during her school years she applied for University, unfortunately failed the admission test and decided to find a way into the music business on her own.
Anna got her first guitar at 13 years old and started singing her own poems as a way to express herself and handle different problems in a productive way, performing.  Her voice is very unique and it takes time to tune in to the Euro Pop Rock voice with the English/Swedish accent vocalising over various genres of music. The music of Anna Meline variates from Dance to Pop to an almost Indie Country style.  It's hard to define but it is original.  She has released a couple of singles and just recently her debut album entitled "I Couldn't Stay" which contains 7 tracks. My favourite track is probably "What For" which is a Euro Rock ballad, this was the first time I'd heard Anna.  This lady says she may…

ALEX MARIE BRINKLEY

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Alexandra Marie Brinkley was born in Fort Worth, Texas in USA.  So the story goes her musician mother was happy her daughter started singing at 1 years of age, unable to talk but could carry a tune! Certainly born to perform then!
Alex says she wants people to relate to her music and not be alone with their problems.  The first song she wrote called " Fly" was about her being bullied at school, she went on to perform for other people and though only young she listens compassionately to her friends and other people and writes from her point of view of their troubles.

Alex sings and plays piano and has over 60 original songs in her repertoire as well as 40 or so cover versions.  She sings around the state as much as she can and anywhere she can.  Her influences include Taylor Swift and Demi Lovato.  She is apparently a down to earth personality and very humble of her talent.  She will go far. When I first heard about Alex I instantly thought of Vanessa Carlton's style who …

ELEANOR NELLY

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Eleanor Nelly is a young singer songwriter from Liverpool who has created a quiet little following around the town gigging regularly.  Her influences are far and wide and include My Chemical Romance, The Hummingbirds, Slash, Billy Joel and Johnny Cash!
Although Eleanor's music influences are very eclectic, her voice is very unique, the closest comparison I could make is like a strange hybrid of Eva Cassidy and Alanis Morissette, and that is pushing me for someone to liken her to! Eleanor is also an actress and can play piano and her manager is her mum!  Obviously the talent has been around for some time in the family.  I first heard this lady on BAY TV Liverpool channel's Acoustic sessions, playing a few songs, just her and her guitar.  I just thought she was an accomplished performer I was amazed at her age when I searched Google for more music.

CHASING INFINITY

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(This article is from print publication in INCheshire magazine and Prestbury Living magazines' June 2015 issues as part of my "Cheshire Rocks" article.

Although coming from Liverpool, Chasing Infinity are regulars on the Cheshire music scene.

Playing a great blend of pop rock, they formed in 2009 and released their debut album, “Chasing Infinity” in 2012.  An acoustic E.P. entitled “Chinfin Unplugged” was released in 2013 and the latest single is “Dance With The One That Brought You”.

Their line-up consists of lead vocalist Adele Halsall, Paul McCormick on guitar, Rob Saunders on bass and harmonica and drummer Mark Rice.

If you love Blondie, or No Doubt, then you will love this quartet.  Bright, bubbly and infectious, they bring an enthusiasm and bounce to any theatre.

Chasing Infinity joined The Spase in supporting The Fireflys at their “Storytellers” acoustic show on June 13th at Runcorn’s The Brindley.

Have a listen to the tracks “If It ‘Ain’t Broke, Break It” and “…

CHIMPS ON DEATH ROW

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(This article is from print publication in INCheshire magazine and Prestbury Living magazines' June 2015 issues as part of my "Cheshire Rocks" article.

Crewe band, Chimps on Death Row, are as you would expect from the name, not a pop boy band!

They are a Metal Rock outfit and consist of Bidder Jones (lead vocals/rhythm and lead guitar), Howie Tonge (bass guitar), Nik Thomas (lead and rhythm guitar and backing vocals) and Pete Mehlmann (drums and percussion).

The band’s sound can only be described as mixed rock.  Sometimes there is an influence of heavy metal Iron Maiden, then you could hear grunge rock Pearl Jam which then leads to Guns N’ Roses or Aerosmith!

They are an original rock band but they do play covers from time to time such as AC/DC’s “Highway to Hell” and Judas Priest’s “Living After Midnight”.

My favourite tracks are “Fly Away” and “Find Me”, you can find these and more on YouTube, Soundcloud and Reverbnation and the Facebook page.






THE SPASE

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(This article is from print publication in INCheshire magazine and Prestbury Living magazines' June 2015 issues as part of my "Cheshire Rocks" article.

The Spase come from the Halton area of Cheshire and are an Alternative Indie band.

Their sound is possibly influenced by the Madchester era of the 90s, as the sounds of The Stone Roses and Inspiral Carpets can be heard.  Ironically, the Carpets’ Tom Hingley described their music as “melodic and poetic”, the acoustic style with harmonious vocals are a joy to listen to.

Wax and P (both on vocals and guitars) are ‘the people’, while there are various members who they call ‘the ghosts’, random musicians who provide accompaniment when required.

They have played with The Zutons and also had a momentous gig at Spike Island in Widnes, where The Stone Roses played their historical appearance.  They have just released their debut album, ‘On A Cloud’, eleven tracks of pure acoustic delight.

On June 13th they supported Runcorn band…

PACIFIC

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(This article is from print publication in INCheshire magazine and Prestbury Living magazines' June 2015 issues as part of my "Cheshire Rocks" article.)

Pacific play a style that can be likened to the band Keane but with an edgier sound.

It is piano-led and it is a form of Alternative Indie Rock.  The group‘s members include two brothers, Anthony and Daniel Orzel.  The former is lead vocalist and plays the aforementioned piano while the latter plays bass and provides backing vocals.

The two remaining members are Dave Bithell, who plays lead guitars and sings backing vocals and drummer and percussionist Drew Burns.

The band reached the semi-final of “Live and Unsigned”, the biggest original music competition for bands around the UK in 2011.  They have released a handful of singles and have had rave reviews from the likes of New Musical Express and BBC 6’s Mark Radcliffe.  They also played the Golden Square at the Warrington Music Festival.

To hear the sound of Pacific loo…

FIREBUG

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FireBug are an exciting American Indie Rock band originally from Chicago but currently based in New Orleans for the last 3 years.  Their sound is unique, a little Pat Benatar, a little Garbage, a little Psychedelic, with some Goth and Blues overtones as well!  This is the kind of band I love where you just can't categorise them into one genre.

The band currently work as a 3 piece (although more members are drafted in for live performances).  The core members are Juliette Tworsey who provides lead vocals/rhythm guitar and mandolin, Jules Shapiro on lead guitar and bass, while Matt Carr is on drums and percussion.
Although the band have been around the live scene for a while around the United States and Europe, they have released a couple of E.P.'s before releasing the "End Of The World" E.P. in 2006.  I first got hold of the band when I heard the "Dreaming Of America" single released in 2009.  The song epitomises the FireBug sound.  You first think there is …