Posts Tagged ‘Acoustic’

Micah OlsanMilwaukee-based singer-songwriter Micah Olsan has gone through several stages in his musical career. And with those stages came different musical influences that helped flavor his music. Throughout his career, Olsan has performed with a band called The Many and he has performed on his own as a solo artist. But with each stage comes a different style and sound to Olsan’s music. And currently, Micah Olsan is in the middle of promoting a new EP of music that features a solo sound and style largely influenced by Folk music. The new 4-song EP from Micah Olsan is entitled Open Space.

Where the previous releases from Micah Olsan featured the singer-songwriter performing with an entire band as was the case with the All Around release featuring Micah Olsan and The Many, the new EP features a much simpler style to the music. The Open Space EP features Olsan in a solo setting as he writes music that contains a solid Folk influence created around an acoustic feel.

Open Space from Micah Olsan begins with the title track to the EP. “Open Space” is a track that takes Olsan’s music back a few decades as the style of the track feels like it would fit in perfectly with songs from the late sixties, early seventies on AM radio. The music for the track brings to mind artists such as John Prine and/or Tom Paxton. The simple guitar approach on the track is amplified when the steel guitar is added to the track. The guitar/steel guitar combination creates a song that is instantly listener friendly. “Open Space” is a great track to start off the new EP from Olsan.

Micah Olsan’s Open Space EP continues with the track “To the Moon”.  While the previous track features a throwback feel to the music, the track “To the Moon” has a very modern feel with the influences to the song including Jack Johnson and/or Ray Lamontagne. “To the Moon” contains a soothing, almost jazzy feel to the music which is helped along with the inclusion of the flute on the track. “To the Moon” finds Olsan in a rather romantic mood on the track as he creates lyrics with very poetic appeal to them. The combination of the jazz/folk music and the poetic lyrics help to create a track that comes across as “poetry set to music”.

With the next track on the EP, Micah Olsan changes the direction of his music. While the previous songs were created around an acoustic guitar, the track called “Dollar” is centered on a lightly played electric guitar that is accompanied by an acoustic guitar. While the acoustic guitar on the track creates the rhythm for the track, the electric guitar is what truly makes the track. The combination of the electric and acoustic guitar ends up creating a track that takes on a slightly exotic island-like feel to the music. The inclusion of the saxophone on the track also gives the track a little ambiance that matches up well with the aforementioned island feel. The “Dollar” track ultimately feels like something from brothers Santo and Johnny Farina of “Sleepwalk” fame if they had become known for songs that featured lyrics.

The newest release from Micah Olsan comes to a close with the track “Palace of the Setting Sun”. Olsan brings his new EP to a close with the song that contains the most production quality of any track on the release. “Palace of the Setting Sun” begins with an extended instrumental break featuring the guitar work of Olsan. The fingerpicking from Micah Olsan creates an acoustic track with a jazzy approach thanks to the acoustic guitar. The inclusion of a little reverb on the track adds a little texture to the otherwise laidback music. The track feels rather expansive through its six-minute playtime. The extended time allows for the singer-songwriter to show off his picking style on the track. While the track contains the longest playtime on the EP, Olsan’s playing keeps the listener enthralled during the longer-than-usual track.

During his time as a singer-songwriter, Micah Olsan keeps evolving and changing his style. With his latest folk-based EP called Open Space, Olsan takes his music in a much different direction than it’s ever been in before. And the softer, gentler side of Olsan shows off a very different side of the artist. The five tracks on the album are nicely varied while keeping that lighter approach on the music.

To get a taste of Micah Olsan’s new EP called Open Space, check out the EP’s title track HERE

For more information, check out Micah Olsan’s PR firm, NoVo Management and Publicity

The ShrimpsBritish-born brothers Marcus and Simon Benjamin came to the music world after spending a good amount of their lives doing other things that were as far from music as you can get. Marcus in fashion and film industries while Simon was in publishing. But eventually, the brothers found themselves looking for something more. Teaming up, they started a duo of their own creating music with a straight-out Acoustic Rock feel to it. Together, the Benjamin Brothers perform as The Shrimps. Having already put out several other releases, the brothers are currently celebrating their most recent album entitled Abstracts and Keywords.

Abstracts and Keywords from The Shrimps begins with the track “Aim with the Arrow”. The track begins with a simple acoustic guitar approach that would work for just two musicians. However, with the addition of a bass part as well as the keyboards, the resulting track contains a lot more substance. While the track could have been a normal “unplugged” acoustic sound, Marcus and Simon Benjamin create a track with a lot of energy.

The new release from The Shrimps continues with the song “Make it Better”. While the previous track on the album was a track with an acoustic rock feel, “Make it Better” shows off a slightly different side to the duo’s music. The track moves from Acoustic Rock to a more folk-like approach to the music. The Folk-Rock approach finds the brothers adding mandolin to the guitars to achieve that Folk-Rock sound. With this sound, the duo of Marcus and Simon Benjamin create a track that contains a hefty amount of British Invasion style. Not surprising, since the New York City-based brothers used to call Great Britain home.

For the track “Life We Live,” Marcus and Simon Benjamin bring the music back to a more Acoustic Rock feel. In fact, with this song, the brothers once again seem to bring a little British Invasion feel to the music. The main guitar part of the track seems to have a bit of influence from the playing of one Pete Townsend in a playing style that brings to mind the acoustic guitar part to the song “Pinball Wizard”. “Life We Live” is one of the more energetic and upbeat tracks on the new album from The Shrimps.

One of the strongest tracks on the  album from The Shrimps is the song “Rebels”. The duo of Marcus and Simon Benjamin create a track with a rather strong groove in the Acoustic Rock that makes up the track. With the inclusion of a light organ and the flute in the background, “Rebels” ends up being one track that separates itself from the rest of the album. The track would feel right at home during the seventies as plenty of other bands at the times were creating songs just like.

As all of the tracks on the new release of Abstracts and Keywords from The Shrimps are acoustic in nature and are all rather similar in the quality of their sound, the best tracks on the album are the ones where the instrumentation seems to be layered, creating a richer, fuller sound to the music. One such track that stands out because of the instrumentation is the song “Top of the World”. The track begins as guitar, bass and mandolin all combine to create the music for the track. Then, the lyrics come in about thirty seconds in. The combination of the music and the lyrics create a beautiful song about being with the one you love. “Top of the World” is easily one of the strongest moments on the album.

Marcus and Simon Benjamin bring the newest album of Abstracts and Keywords from The Shrimps to an end with the track “In the Moon”. The track begins with just the guitar before the rest of the instrumentation slowly help to build the song. The song resulting track contains a musical feel that brings to mind songs from the sixties while not feeling dated.

Throughout Abstracts and Keywords from The Shrimps, the Benjamin Brothers have put together an album that is rather simple in its musical content as each of the tracks feature very few instruments. That simplistic way of making the songs actually help to create an album that allows the listener to truly enjoy both the musical and lyrical content of the songs and it also proves that something does not have to be overly complicated to be good.

For more information on the band and their music, check out the band’s Facebook profile.

 

Andrew WiscombeSalt Lake City’s Andrew Wiscombe is not your average singer-songwriter. In fact, while music had been a part of Wiscombe’s life (he’s Berklee-trained), it wasn’t until he left the military where he had served as an Army sniper in Iraq that music truly played a pivotal part in his life. The introduction of music into Wiscombe’s life was a way for the ex-military officer to help with the PTSD that he had been dealing with since getting out of the service so that he could focus on other things, such as his family life.

Andrew Wiscombe’s style of writing is largely based in folk-rock that will remind many of songs from Bob Dylan… but with a lot more of a personal connection in them. Where Dylan may have sung about the atrocities of war, Andrew Wiscombe lived through them. And that personal connection shows in his music as Wiscombe takes the listener to places where only a person who experienced the real life situations could.

While some of the tracks written by Andrew Wiscombe deal with the heaviness of war, Wiscombe ventures into other directions that are much less uneasy but with just as much intensity to their subject matter. As a matter of fact, Andrew Wiscombe writes his songs with a style that makes each song feel like a real-life story. That realistic songwriting approach can be found on each of Andrew Wiscombe’s CDs.

Having already released Stories from Southpaw and The River, The Lark, The Pine, Andrew Wiscombe is currently promoting a brand new EP. That new release is entitled Indiana. With his previous releases, Andrew Wiscombe created each song with a very minimalistic approach with mainly just his guitar and his harmonica. For the Indiana EP, Wiscombe continued that basic idea but added Ben Carey on bass to help add some depth to the on the release. That additional element gives some of the tracks more body but still allows for a simplistic sound to Wiscombe’s music.

The first track on the new EP from Wiscombe is the song “Jinglin’ Jack”. Based deep in the ideals of Folk music and folklore, “Jinglin’ Jack” finds Wiscombe creating a track that has a very strong talltale approach to the lyrics. The story contained within the lyrics is about a man who comes to town only to be misunderstood by the townsfolk as they come to think something different about the man than the truth would actually come to show. It’s only after they chase him out of town that they realize who the man was. “Jinglin’ Jack” from Wiscombe ends up being a perfect example of “never judge a book by its cover because you’ll probably miss out on something.”

With the next song of “On the Run,” Wiscombe changes up the feel of the music. While most of the material from Wiscombe is very simplistic, this track takes the folk feel of his music and adds a lot of energy to the music of the track. The Folk-Rock track stands out rather loudly because of the energy included on the track which includes an electric guitar to help add to that energy level. The folk-rock song of “On the Run” could easily find its way onto modern-day Country radio formats.

Another track that finds Wiscombe adding Country to his new EP is the release’s title track. “Indiana” features a slow, easy pace to the Country/Folk music. As you listen to the track, you feel as if you’re listening to a story. The storyline deals with the everyday lives of men and women who call Indiana home. The simple feel of the track is what makes it easy to listen to.

The newest release from Andrew Wiscombe comes to an end with a new rendition of perhaps the strongest track off of the album The River, The Lark, The Pine. The track is entitled “Holdin’ a Ghost”. While other songs from Wiscombe’s may deal with stories about other individuals, “Holdin’ a Ghost” is very close to Wiscombe’s life since the title comes from a statement made by his wife Kate. As she held him close, she felt that his mind was a million miles away. It felt as if she had been “holding a ghost”. The emotional tug caused by the lyrics makes the song one of the strongest in Andrew Wiscombe’s personal library. It also helps to bring Indiana to a close on a very strong note.

Indiana from Andrew Wiscombe will be released on June 2nd, 2017. Until then, check out the track “Holdin’ a Ghost“.

As an ex-soldier who turned to music to help with his PTSD, Andrew Wiscombe soon found out about others who were also using music as a way to help cope with the stress that comes from combat. Together, they joined Operation Encore, an organization that helps give ex-military and military spouses a musical outlet to deal with inner demons. The organization also gives its members a new way to make a living. For more information on Operation Encore and everything it’s about, check out the organization’s website.

 

 

Singer-songwriter Steve Nick is an up-and-coming artist that is currently gaining speed as he releases his music to the world. Having already written over one hundred songs, Nick is currently promoting a new acoustic release that will be entitled “Unplugged”. As a way of promoting the new release, Nick has released the first single off of the release entitled “The Shadow of Your Eyes”. The track comes with a very simple acoustic rock approach to its sound. With the track being acoustic, “The Shadow of Your Eyes” consists simply of Steve Nick and his guitar and no other instruments. With only vocals and guitar, the simple track allows the song from Steve Nick to come through. The clear delivery in the vocals from Steve Nick may remind some of rock and roll singers from the eighties. Because of the simple nature of the music on the track, the music for the track finds Nick borrowing from any number of musical eras for the song. It is the strong guitar work on the song that shows off the talent of Nick as a musician. His guitar work for the song feels very timeless. As a result, the music for “The Shadow of Your Eyes” could have come from the eighties, nineties or today and could fit onto any number of radio formats. Together, the guitar work from Steve Nick, his vocal ability and the feel of the song itself all come together to create a track that is simplistic in nature and yet also gives the listener a really nice indication of what the entire “Unplugged” release sounds like.

Reviewer: Matheson Kamin

Rating: ***** (five stars)

Antigone Rising is a Country Rock band from New York. Having been founded by sisters Cathy Henderson and Kristen Ellis-Henderson, the band has had their share of time in the spotlight for their music and other causes that are close to their hearts. The band is known mainly for their 2005 release From the Ground Up. Having had other members come and go through the band, Antigone Rising now consists of: Nini Camps – lead vocals, rhythm guitar; Kristen Ellis-Henderson – bass guitar, vocals; Cathy Henderson – lead guitar, vocals and Dena Tauriello-drums. With an ever-increasing library of musical releases, the band is currently promoting their newest release; a five-song EP entitled Whiskey and Wine Vol. II.

Whiskey and Wine Vol. II from Antigone Rising begins with the hard-rocking track called “Game Changer”. The track begins with a beat that will instantly draw you into the band’s music. The call-and-respond vocals from Nini Camps and the rest of the band at the beginning of the track will remind the listener of something from the Girl Groups like The Supremes or The Ronettes before Antigone Rising takes the track in a more rock and roll-inspired direction that makes the song feel like a true anthem for today’s people who want something more in the world.

The newest release from Antigone Rising continues with the track “I See You”. The track features a folk-rock feel as the band takes their music in a slightly more gentle direction. While “Game Changer’s” energy draws the listener in, “I See You” has its own brand of beauty in both the romantic lyrics and the easy feel of the music. Like “Game Changer” before it, “I See You” feels like it could easily become a single off of the release.

With the track “Weed & Wine,” the quartet brings the energy of the music up as they incorporate a little Rock and Roll into their style. The inclusion of the banjo on the track and the twang in the electric guitar makes the song feel as much like Country music as much as Rock and Roll. The track finds the singer invited her special someone to a special night. The track’s lighthearted lyrics and the fun musical approach on the track keeps the energy level up and makes “Weed & Wine” a song to listen to if you’re in the mood to have fun.

Perhaps the most listener-friendly track on Whiskey and Wine Vol. II from Antigone Rising is the song “My Town”. Right from the very beginning of the song, the band creates a track that pulls upon the emotional feeling of the listener as the lyrics of the song bring to mind everything that makes your hometown so special. The Country feeling blended with the light Rock feeling in the music makes the track perfect for a crossover hit as fan of both genres of music will be drawn to the track. The inclusion of the strings helps to add a lot of emotional feeling to both the lyrics and music of the song. “My Town” is easily the most additive of the songs on the newest release from Antigone Rising.

The newest release from Antigone Rising comes to an end with the track “The Last Time”. The song features one of the strongest energy levels of the songs on Whiskey and Wine Vol. II. Like the track “Game Changer” that began the release, “The Last Time” features lyrics that seem to make a statement. And since “Game Changer” started the album off with a bang, “The Last Time” seems to be the perfect track to bring to an end as it features the same type of energy in the music.

Having already released Whiskey and Wine Vol. I in 2014, Antigone Rising released Whiskey and Wine Vol. II in 2015 to finish the concept. The 2015 five-song EP contains plenty of highs within the limited amount of tracks. Flowing from Country to Folk to Rock and Roll, the five songs in the EP contain plenty of variety and that variety makes the release a jot to listen to from start to finish.

Click HERE to check out the video to the Antigone Rising’s song “Game Changer”.

Click HERE to check out the entire Whiskey and Wine Vol. II release.

Click HERE to check out Antigone Rising’s PR firm Cyber PR.

Having spent time with the bands Balligomingo and Sleepthief, Canadian singer-songwriter Jody Quine is stepping out on her own to start to create a voice all her own. While both of the bands she has spent time with have a certain style to their music, Quine is taking some of their sounds and incorporating other styles to create a style that is both electric and acoustic at the same time. The inclusion of these and other styles of music help to give Quine’s music certain uniqueness to it. Quine has taken her combination of acoustic and electric and created a new CD. The CD is called Seven.

Seven from Jody Quine begins with the song “You Are”. The first track from the CD has a simple acoustic feel. The guitar-based song includes both folk and “pop” influences to it that help create a very easy feel to the music. The inclusion of bongos instead of a drumset helps to enforce the folk feel to the song. The light musical approach creates a sound that would easily fit on any Adult Contemporary radio format where Quine would fit alongside musicians like Jewel, Melissa Etheridge, and even fellow Canadian Alanis Morissette.

With the next track of “Tonight,” the style of the music takes a much more produced sound as Rhys Fulber takes the feel of the track and takes it back in time to the eighties to give the track a sound that may remind you of something that may have been created by either Dépêche Mode, The Motels or even Duran Duran. While it does have a certain sound reminiscent of the New Wave bands from the eighties with its electro-pop sound, “Tonight” is still one of the most commercial-sounding tracks on Seven and could easily find an audience on today’s radio airwaves.

“To Be Frank” is one of the most interesting songs on Seven from Jody Quine. The song begins with a very light keyboard sound that plays behind Quine as she sings about her deepest desires. Quine’s vocals on the track are both beautiful and powerful, depending on the part of the song. The beginning of the song reminds you of something from female “pop” songs from the late seventies/early eighties from the likes of The Carpenters or the more laidback songs from Donna Summers. The song slowly builds as it becomes a track that sounds more like Dépêche Mode than The Carpenters. The song ultimately brings to mind Quine’s time with Balligomingo and Sleepthief because of the inclusion of an electro-pop feel to the song that gives the song a nice contrast between the later part of the song and the more laidback feel of the beginning of the track.

While “To Be Frank” has a complex feel to it, the track “I Love You” brings some of the simplicity in Quine’s style back to the release as the song features a much more folk-like sound to it. The acoustic guitar plays a large part in the music and the percussion also takes on a much lighter feel to it. Like the release’s first track of “You Are,” “I Love You” has a relaxed and easy approach to it.

The new release from Jody Quine comes to an end with the track “Come Back Home”. While the song has a definite beauty to it, the lyrics to the track feature a very heartbreaking feel to them as the singer pleads to her lover to return. The song features an acoustic approach as it is piano-based and it is that piano that makes up the majority of the music to the track. The slow pace and emotional feel to the lyrics brings the release to a close on a slightly low-key note.

Seven from Canadian singer-songwriter Jody Quine is a very enjoyable release as the music of the seven-song EP has a lot of variety in it. The changing of the pace in the music on the EP will definitely keep you intrigued. The release also allows Jody Quine to show off her talents as a singer as those seven tracks have Quine stretching from an emotional approach to the lyrics to a more powerful approach. Seven from Jody Quine is a release that definitely fits into any commercial music-lover’s library.

Review by Matheson Kamin
Rating: 5 stars (out of 5)

Check out Jody Quine’s Bandpage account to hear some of her music.

Click HERE for the video to “Come Back Home” from Jody Quine.

ImageRocket Science from Drew Ross is an unusual release, as it has two different parts (on two CDs) that help make up the album. The first CD of the release consists of the music tracks created by Ross. These tracks with Ross contain only the singer-songwriter and his guitar. These guitar-only music tracks allow the songs to be heard as he had written them. This CD also gives the impression of seeing a solo singer-songwriter in a very intimate setting, like seeing a friend in alone in concert.

The second CD of the Rocket Science album contains the same songs as the first CD of the album, except that these tracks have been stripped of Ross’ guitar and have a totally new musical background added to them. These new backgrounds for the twelve album tracks have been created by an English duo that goes by the moniker of ecopunk. The band ecopunk consists of Brighton-based Tim Rose and Lee Sharp. With Rose and Sharp taking complete control of creating their take on the music on this album, there is much more depth to the songs than had they been created by one singular musician.

Both of the versions of Rocket Science begin with the track “Charlotte’s Dream”. As an opening song, the 25-second track featuring only the acoustic guitar comes across as a rather strong Folk-based instrumental. But once the electronics from the duo known as ecopunk are added in, the resulting 30-second track now comes off as a slightly long instrumental jingle. This is a slightly unusual way to begin this album. Of course, this is a slightly unusual album.

One of the best songs on the album is “Alone”. And whether it’s the solo version by Drew Ross or the version of the song created with the help of ecopunk, the song has a beauty that will hit you immediately after putting the song on. With the version by ecopunk, the duo of Tim Rose and Lee Sharp have taken the most liberties with the song adding a strong electronic feel to the song while still staying somewhat close to the feeling of the acoustic version from Ross. And the additions to the chorus on the ecopunk version give the song a much fuller sound. The two versions of the song may have the listener fighting with himself as to which version is the better of the two.

With the track “Beautiful Lie,” the listener gets not one, but two strong tracks. As the solo track by Drew Ross, the track feels like a stripped-down “unplugged” track about a man who cannot accept that the woman he has feelings for does not love him. When the track is handed over to Tim Rose and Lee Sharp, the two build on what Ross had sent them. The music featuring acoustic guitar is replaced by electronics that help to create a track that sounds as if it would have fit right in with songs in the New Wave era of the eighties. There is most definitely a British flavor to the track that helps reinforce that New Wave feel. Whether with the ecopunk version or the stripped-down version by Drew Ross, “Beautiful Lie” is one of the shining moments on the Rocket Science release.

Another song that will grab you because of the large difference between the acoustic and remake versions is the title track of the newest release from Drew Ross. “Rocket Science” sounds like a completely different song once Tim Rose and Lee Sharp got ahold of it. Since the song is mentions science, the electronic feel of the ecopunk version really makes use of the science theme of the lyrics.

It is on “Words” that you really get a chance to experience the power of Drew Ross’ writing style. With the acoustic version of the song, the beauty of the words shines through; when Tim Rose and Lee Sharp add their touch to the song, the music seems to add an even more touching approach to those lyrics.

The two CDs both come to an end with the same track, “Rainy Day”. While the original version once again features the omnipresent vocals and guitar from Drew Ross, the ecopunk version of the song takes the tune and creates a love ballad version of the song. The keys and strings on the version found on the ecopunk CD gives the song a beauty that adds a lot of substance to the album.

Drew Ross’ Rocket Science album makes wonderful use of the two versions of each song contained on the release. The two very different CDs give the listener two dramatically different sides of the music of Drew Ross.

Whether you listen to each song on Rocket Science album twice playing the acoustic versions back-to-back with the ecopunk versions or you play the acoustic CD out completely before going after the ecopunk CD to hear the difference in the album as a whole, Rocket Science from Drew Ross is the perfect way to experience how a song is shaped in the writing and production process before it ends up being combined with other songs to create that newest album from your favorite singer-songwriter or band. And the differences between the two versions for each song on this album are drastic in many cases, creating an album with two completely different feelings.

To listen to the music of Drew Ross and the songs that appear on this album, check out Drew Ross’ Reverbnation Profile.

Very few times will you ever find a band that lasts very long; but Jackopierce is one of the bands that are made up of musicians who just won’t give up. The musicians Jack O’Neill and Cary Pierce have taken their music in several directions over the years. With their new album of Everywhere All the Time, Pierce and O’Neill have created songs that have a very commercial sound to them. With that style, they are sure to make new fans to add to the huge list of fans they already have.

With the newest album of music from this musical group, the duo of Jack O’Neill and Cary Pierce seem to take many different approaches to the music on the album. From straight-out acoustic rock to songs with folk influence, the feeling on the Everywhere All the Time album changes from song to song, creating a release that promises something for everyone.

Everywhere All the Time starts off with the song “Into Me”. Taking some influence from Jason Mraz and some more of today’s pop/rock artists and bands, the rock song has a sound that has a good groove and will get people moving.

After one song with a good groove, Jackopierce creates yet another track with a groove. This time, the song “Finally Free” ends up feeling like the first single of the album. The light feeling of the acoustic and electric guitars combine together with a drumbeat that grabs your attention and won’t let go. The song brings to mind the sound of bands like Vertical Horizon and other pop/rock bands that would fit in on today’s Top 40 radio stations.

Taking a chance to create a sound all their own, the song “Around Me Now” by Jackopierce has a stronger rock feel than the previous tracks on the release. While it still has a pop feel that may remind some of songs by Sugar Ray, there’s enough originality in this track to give people something new to listen to.

Jackopierce takes a different approach with the song “Listen to Me”. The duo of Jack O’Neill and Cary Pierce create the song with an acoustic feel. The acoustic guitars and keyboards in the background take the listener into a folk state of mind. The song has a very catchy sound that may have you thinking of pop/rock from artists from the seventies. The folk feeling that blends with the acoustic rock on the song helps create a mellow feeling while keeping the catchy melody of the song strong.

Sometimes O’Neill and Pierce wear their influences too much on their sleeves; this is definitely the case with the song “Alright By Me”. It is on this very catchy song that the duo brings forward some influence from Blessid Union of Souls into their musical mix. The song about a girl who falls in love with the narrator of the song comes a bit too close to Blessid Union’s best known track “Hey Leonardo“. Though “Alright By Me” could stand on its own if you knew nothing of Blessid Union, for those who do know the band, the connection between the two bands on this song is too obvious; whether O’Neill and Pierce were aware of that connection or not.

Jack O’Neill and Cary Pierce let the lyrics of “Let Go of Me” come to forefront of the song. The ability to take a soft rock song and let the lyrics take control is a sign of good songwriting. “Let Go of Me” is one of the best songs as far as the lyrics are concerned. The play between the two vocalists during the chorus of the song creates one of the best choruses on the whole release. And with the accordion in the background, “Let Go of Me” is one of the best tracks on the newest release from Jackopierce.

The album stays with a soft rock feel with the next song of “Lonely”. Like the song “Let Go of Me” before, “Lonely” plays with your heart as you listen to the emotional lyrics of the song. Like other moments on the album, “Lonely” feels like it comes from a different era of rock. The beauty in the song brings to mind some of the artists in the 70s. In fact, you might find a little bit of The Eagles in the music to the song.

From the pop/rock of “Into Me,” the groove found on “Finally Free,” and the soft rock on songs like “Let Go of Me” and “Lonely,” Jackopierce has created a new release that gives the listener many different styles of rock music on the album. For longtime fans of the band, this is a solid release that should make you happy. For those about to discover the music of the band, Everywhere All the Time’s ever-changing musical style will give you many songs that will fit into your music library. There’s a lot of good music on this release no matter where you fall.

To discover the music of Jackopierce, here is the video to the band’s songAround Me Now“.

While New York-based singer-songwriter Jenn Summers has a past that contains a lot of uncertainty, the songs that she writes have a more upbeat approach to them in a way that may just help you forget about your troubles. Jenn Summers took some of these songs and created a new album entitled When Life Gives You Lemons. And just recently, Summers celebrated the release of the 2012 album.

When Life Gives You Lemons from Jenn Summers is a release that features a relaxed a soulful approach with a solid soul/acoustic pop combination in its songs. For fans of music with a more relaxed approach, the new album from Jenn Summers gives you that relaxed feel while also promoting the writing style of this singer-songwriter.

Jenn Summers’ new release of When Life Gives You Lemons begins with the track “Blue Velveteen”. The bass, acoustic guitars and simple drumbeat combine to create a track with a relaxed feel to its music that follows the lyrics about taking it easy. As a song with an easy beat, the “Blue Velveteen” track gives the listener one good reason to check out the rest of the album.

The second track, “Get Better,” adds a stronger beat to the album while the song sticks with the relaxed feel that began on track one. “Get Better” also features a more hook-driven sound and moves the release in a more commercial direction.

When Life Gives You Lemons continues with the title track. “When Life Gives You Lemons, Make L.O.V.E.” The simple ukulele and handclaps approach to the song allows for the words being sung by Summers to stand out. Although the track is very sparse in its nature, the song also has some of the best and upbeat lyrics of the ten tracks on this album. The refrain of the song will also draw the listener in to sing along.

On the track “This Side of Free” takes Summers’ music and creates a track that feels the most like something you’d find on today’s radio dial. The music of the track contains guitar, bass, drums and organ. This combination of musical elements helps to bring Jenn Summers’ music to life more than any song thus far on the release. This track also allows for Summers’ voice to shine brighter than on any earlier track.

“Don’t Mind Me” is another track that features a full-band sound. This song takes on a more pessimistic view on life as the lyrics of the song tell of someone trying to accept the end of the relationship. Along with Jenn singing the lead vocals to the song, she also does a nice job adding background vocals that add a nice harmony to the track.

Just as Summers sings of sadness because of love loss in “Don’t Mind Me,” she takes a different view of things on the more upbeat song “The Monday Song”. The narrator in this song doesn’t want to see Monday come as she has too much fun on the weekends spending time with her love interest.

Like the earlier song “This Side of Free,” the track “Wake Me Up” also has a very radio friendly sound. The commercial feel to the music and the lyrics about desire make a song that has a sound that might remind people of the band The Bangles, especially the music on their song “Manic Monday”.

“On My Own” is probably the track on the When Life Gives You Lemons album from Jenn Summers that truly shows off the soulful nature of Summers’ voice the most. On this track, Summers proves she can survive anything….even after a relationship comes to an end. As Summers sings the lyrics to the song, the listener hears the conviction in her words that makes you believe what she says.

The ten tracks that make up the When Life Gives You Lemons album from Jenn Summers give you many different styles of writing from Summers on one release. Whether a simple sound like the sparse approach on the title track of “When Life Gives You Lemons, Make L.O.V.E.” or the fuller, more commercial sound of “This Side of Free,” you get to experience a wide variety of writing styles on one release from singer-songwriter who knows how to create her music in a way that keeps it sounding fresh from track-to-track. When Life Gives You Lemons from Jenn Summers is varied enough that almost anyone will find something to enjoy within the ten tracks that make up the 2012 release.

Click the link that follows to watch the video for “When Life Gives You Lemons, Make L.O.V.E.

Sometimes your calling really isn’t your calling. It may take some time to realize that you should be doing something else. That’s what Commodities Trader-turned-musician Bob Pressner discovered and is now on his way to making a name for himself in the music industry.

The musical path that Bob Pressner has taken led him to create music that incorporates a lot of styles and genres into his style. It is this style of Americana that Pressner has included on his new release called King of Nothing.

Bob Pressner begins his new release King of Nothing with the song “iGirl”. A song about trying to find real love in a world of information where you have no contact with anyone real (“We found the future but forgot each other”), the singer sings about a woman who would be great to know if he could actually meet her. The song has a very catchy rock sound that will definitely have you singing along.

The pace slows down on the title track of Bob Pressner’s new release. “King of Nothing” is a pop song that features a beautiful instrumental background complete with strings. The pop/folk feel to the music works well when paired up with lyrics about a man who feels that he has nothing to show for himself and cannot even stake claim to anything of importance. The sad lyrics and the beautiful music combine to make a very moving song.

One of the best tracks on the album is probably the most infectious, as well. “Next Summer Never Came” is one of those well-written pop songs that have an unbelievably catchy hook as well as lyrics that will, once again, tear at your heart with their powerful feeling of sadness. The mostly acoustic song is very strong in its music. This song about unfulfilled love is strangely beautiful, give the meaning of the lyrics. It is also one track that will have you reaching for “repeat”.

And then, for the first time on the King of Nothing release, Bob Pressner releases his rock side. With the song “Renaissance Man,” Pressner creates a song that brings to mind the music of bands like The White Stripes or The Black Stripes. The guitar and drums of the song create the main part of the music to the track. If you are a fan of bands like The White Stripes, The Black Keys or even Mr. Gnome, this song would really feed your hunger for that type of rock music.

The pace slows down once again with the next track called “The Blue Has Left your Eyes”. In a song that sounds more like Alt-Country than Rock music, the words of this song sound as if Pressner is channeling songwriters like James Taylor or even Jim Croce. The meaning behind the lyrics to this song has greater depth than the vast majority of the songs being written by today’s artists or songwriters.

“Thinking Man” seems to find Pressner taking on the role of singer-songwriter. With words that seem to be more important to the song than creating a hard-rockin’ track, Bob Pressner seems to, once again, channel the likes of James Taylor. The relaxed feel of the track even has Taylor’s style to it.

The twang of the guitar on “Water Water” along with Bob Pressner’s smoky vocals brings to mind the music from Bob Dylan. The roots rock base to the music mixed with a more modern and soulful approach to the song make for a song that could find an audience almost anywhere.

The King of Nothing release from Bob Pressner features a lot of twists and turns throughout the length of the album: The Alternate Rock style of the song “Renaissance Man” mixed with the Alt-Country sound of “The Blue Has Left Your Eyes” and the Pop feel of the song “Next Summer Never Came” along with the “pop culture” references found in the song “iGirl” all help to shape the new album. Each song on the King of Nothing release gives the listener a different take on the talent of Bob Pressner; and each song on the new release from Bob Pressner gives the listener plenty of variety in the music.

Click the song title for the video to “King of Nothing“.