Posts Tagged ‘British Invasion’

You rarely find a group of musicians that create their own music with orchestral strings as part of their sound, but that is exactly what you will find with the band The Furious Seasons. The Furious Seasons is a band that takes its cue from earlier bands like The Left Banke, Electric Light Orchestra and even Poi Dog Pondering. And just like these previous bands, The Furious Seasons’ sound stands out from the rest of the music industry because of the beauty that can be found in the music from the band.

Singer-guitarist David Steinhart has taken his vast recording history and put it to use in the creation of the releases from The Furious Seasons. Along with Steinhart, his brother Jeff Steinhart plays the bass, his nephew Nate Steinhart plays the guitar, Bob Gannon plays the drums and Ray Chang adds his violin to the music to help give the band’s music its baroque feel. It’s that baroque feel in the rock music that shows up quite a bit on the band’s new album of My Analog Face.

My Analog Face begins with the track “Let’s Sweep Together”. The baroque/pop feel to the track seems to transport the listener back in time. With a beautiful arrangement that makes the song feel like it would have come out of the British Invasion and the strings that accompany the music, “Let’s Sweep Together” gives the listener the indication that they’re in for an interesting musical experience.

Strings are used once again on the album’s second track called “On the Wire”. This time, the strings help to give the song a more emotional feel than “Let’s Sweep Together”. The band combines together to create a slow-paced song that is perfect for the duet that is sung by David Steinhart and Justine Bennett. The strings included on the track give an emotional touch to the song.

On the song “We Go Down,” The Furious Seasons seem to once again slip into a retro style of music; this time, taking a musical approach that may remind some of the hit singles from 1970’s AM radio. In a style that combines elements from artists like B.W. Stevenson, Cat Stevens and even the Eagles, “We Go Down” brings back the lite rock sound of days gone by. Staying in a seventies frame of mind for another song, My Analog Face’s “A Few Miles Back” begins with a sound that seems to have been influenced by well-known composer Henry Mancini. The Mancini Influence on the track definitely dates the sound of the song, but it also helps to create one of the prettiest moments on the release.

While the album as a whole has many enjoyable listening moments, it is the song “Keys and Watch” that will resonate the most with today’s music buying public. With pop/rock music that seems to have an ultimately timeless feel to it and lyrics poetic enough to feel as if Bob Dylan had written them, “Keys and Watch” would easily fit onto any Adult Contemporary station today. It is also the strongest track on the newest release from The Furious Seasons.

The song “Hey Jon” is another track that would fit on today’s Adult Contemporary radio as it contains the sort of timeless pop/rock as the earlier track of “Keys and Watch”. The song about seeing an old friend again has a certain familiarity to it that everyone can get behind, just like “Keys and Watch”.

To finish off the album, The Furious Seasons include one cover tune. And in this case, it’s the song “Operator (That’s Not the Way it Feels)”. The Jim Croce song is given new life with this version from The Furious Seasons. The Furious Seasons take the song and make it their own, all while not straying too far from the original version.

David Steinhart and the rest of The Furious Seasons have put together a release that has a nice and relaxed feel to it. The many different styles to the band’s music on the album help it feel unique from track to track. The baroque pop mixed with the Adult Contemporary creates two different sides to the band’s style. Whether you’re a fan of today’s music or you prefer the styles that came before, My Analog Face from The Furious Seasons has something for everyone. 

This album review was done back in 2012 when I was still reviewing for ReviewYou. The review was sent off to the company per our agreement. However, it was never published by me. I only recently realized this. So to make up for that oversight, I am publishing the review here.

As far as The Furious Seasons are concerned, the band has stayed busy since the time when they requested this review. In fact, you can find several albums from the ensemble. The latest of which is entitled Now Residing Abroad.

To discover the music of The Furious Seasons including both My Analog Face and Now Residing Abroad, you can the band out on the spotify account.

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.

 

Frank MigliorelliNew York-based singer-songwriter Frank Migliorelli is currently enjoying time as a full-fledged musician as he is creating his own songs. But this time in his life came after Migliorelli had done his time as a jingle and song writer for ad agencies, children and others. Having had his share of the more commercial side of music, Frank Migliorelli is now doing his own music. Having already created one album of original music that draws from rock, pop, and other styles that helped to create roots rock, Migliorelli and his band called The Dirt Nappers have returned with a brand new release. The brand new album from Frank Migliorelli & The Dirt Nappers is called Bass, Drums, Guitars and Organs.

Bass, Drums, Guitars and Organs from Frank Migliorelli & The Dirt Nappers begins with the track “When She’s Walking by Your Side”. While the track contains a sound that is largely based on bands that had made up the British Invasion era of Rock and Roll, this version of the style feels more like something that would have been produced by a band like The Raspberries, an American band who ended up being largely influenced by the British Invasion sound. “When She’s Walking by Your Side” would have fit well with music from the sixties but could also have found a place on the airwaves during the early seventies.

With the track of “I’ve Been on My Knees,” Migliorelli and the band create a track that feels strangely familiar as the track’s music seems to drift between early Roots Rock and current Indie Rock. The music created by the band consists of a relatively simple Rock and Roll feel with a little banjo thrown in to the mix. The resulting track would have fit well with artists like Buddy Holly or Bill Hailey but at the same time, would fit just as easily on Americana radio formats today.

The feel of the music changes on the track “It All Falls Down On Me”. The track shows off the true talent of Frank Migliorelli & The Dirt Nappers as the band creates a Country/Rock style that seems very reminiscent to songs that had been written by the band The Eagles. All of the guitar parts contained within the track all blend together to create a musical feel that would have felt right at home on that band’s various albums. “It All Falls Down On Me” could fit in with today’s Alt-Rock/Americana bands but would also fit with the older sounds of bands from the seventies.

With the track of “Rafferty Train,” Frank Migliorelli & The Dirt Nappers create a track with a light Rock and Roll feel. The easy feel of the music produces a musical feel that would have felt right at home on AM radio formats back in the seventies. As the track plays out, so does a storyline of two people on a train. The guitars that help make up the music of the track produce one of the more interesting tracks on the album.

Frank Migliorelli & The Dirt Nappers change the feel of the music once again for the song “Baby Put a Dress One”. While the band stays in the same musical era as “It All Falls Down On Me” as far as the overall influence of the music, the track of “Baby Put a Dress On” contains a slightly retro feel to the music as if the band had added a few psychedelic vibes to the track. Because of that psychedelic vibe, the music to song has a bit of groove to it.

Taking the music back quite a bit on the song “Wound up Woman,” Frank Migliorelli & The Dirt Nappers create a song that brings back the feel of the early Rock and Rollers like Elvis Presley or Bill Haley. “Wound up Woman” features the sound of an electric guitar and a piano as the two instruments combine to forge a sound that feels very authentic, as if the track had actually been recorded back in the mid 1950’s.

The pace of the music changes once again on the song “Someone Else’s Dream”. The band slows things down as the track takes on a folk-rock feel that also seems rather dream-like. The lyrics of the song help add to that dream-like quality as Migliorelli sings of feeling lost in a world that doesn’t seem quite real to him. When listening to this song, the listener may come to realize that there are indeed times when you do, in fact, feel as if you are lost in “Someone Else’s Dream”.

Bass, Drums, Guitars and Organs, the new release Frank Migliorelli & The Dirt Nappers comes to an end with the track “Former Femme Fatales and Romeos”. The track features a light musical approach with a story-like lyrical content that feels very reminiscent of something Tom Waits. The sadness contained in the lyrics is matched up well with the easy feel of the music. That light feel of the music makes for a perfect way to quietly bring the album to a close.

Frank Migliorelli & The Dirt Nappers’ new release of Bass, Drums, Guitars and Organs takes the listener on a musical ride that includes several different styles of Rock and Roll. The different styles on the album combine together to create a release that feels almost timeless.

To hear some of the music from Frank Migliorelli & The Dirt Nappers, check out the song “Rafferty Train“.

 

 

 

 

 

With the decision for Heather Stewart to make the entertainment industry her career of choice also came the decision for Stewart to create her own music. Stewart started writing her own songs and Stewart eventually created her first release from 2008 entitled Life of the Party. With the success of that release, Stewart decided to create a new album.
When creating her latest release of What It is, Heather Stewart took her songs into two different studios that had their own histories that made them ideal locations to record, first at the Sound Factory and the second at Sunset Sound, both in Los Angeles. With being in both of these studios, the recording process took on a special vibe that helped add magic to the music.

To help Heather Stewart bring her music to life, Stewart called upon guitarists Blake Mills, Marty Rifkin and Joshua Grange and drummer Aaron Sterling as well as bassist Sean Hurley who has spent time performing with the likes of John Mayer and Vertical Horizon. The resulting sound of Stewart’s music combines elements of musicians like Bonnie Raitt, Sheryl Crow as well as others.

The latest album from Heather Stewart, What It Is, begins with the album’s title track. “What It Is” The track features a slow pace that adds to the blues-flavored music of song. While the song has a very relaxed feel to it, Stewart’s vocal delivery is still very strong. The results are very similar to something that you could easily expect from Bonnie Raitt, with a little less twang to the song.

The pace of the music on What It Is picks up with the next song of “Tell Me Who”. The resulting track has a vibe that could really remind you of something that would have been created by The Traveling Wilburys: the twang of the guitar on the track could easily have come from George Harrison while the lyrics of the song sound like something that would have come from that band’s first album. The opening seconds of the track would have fit with songs like “End of the Line” and “Handle with Care” from The Traveling Wilburys. The track has a very commercial quality to it and the simplicity to the lyrics makes them easy to sing along with. “Tell Me Who” would be an ideal candidate for a single off the album.

With the song “Stand Up,” Stewart lets more than a little of her independent spirit out as she writes a song about being who you want to be. Like other songs before it, “Stand Up” has the appeal and message that could make the track into a definite anthem for women’s rights. The folk-rock music for the track also has mass appeal for all music listeners.

After a track that features a very strong message about being strong, Stewart follows that song with one of the strongest tracks on the album. “Back and Blue” picks up a lot more rock and roll feeling than any of the tracks that came before it. The bass and drums create a very strong beat for the song that seems to take the listener back to a more creative time in the history of rock and roll as the song feels as if it would have fit in with songs from bands that helped would have been part of the British Invasion. The resulting track of “Black and Blue” could easily have been written by The Animals as it has the same type of strong feeling as the song “House of the Rising Sun” has.

Another track off of What It Is that could easily end up being a single is the song “A Little More”. The heartbreaking lyrics about the singer coming to the realization that a relationship is ending are very universal. The song features a very strong twang that comes from the lead guitar on the track. That twang gives the song enough of a Country music feel that the song could easily be a crossover track. It is that “crossover” appeal that makes “A Little More” one of the strongest tracks on What It Is from Heather Stewart.

The new release from Heather Stewart, What It Is, features many different styles in the tracks of the album. With each change in the feel of the album, the listener gets to experience a different side to Stewart’s personality. Those different sides to her personality help make the release very well-rounded and enjoyable to listen to.

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

To get just a glimpse of Heather Stewart’s new release “What It Is,” which will be released October 8, 2013, here is a video of Stewart performing the title track of the album with guitarist Keaton Simons. CLICK HERE.

Boston, Massachusetts is the home to the rock band Canary. The band has created their own sound by taking elements from Classic Rock bands. Having already released an EP by the title of Handsome Stranger, Canary has just put out a single entitled “Let down Your Guard”.

“Let down Your Guard” starts with a drumbeat before the rest of the band contributes to the Blues/Rock feel of the track that brings to mind the Peter Green days of Fleetwood Mac. The song is sung with a soulful approach to the lyrics. The bluesy feel of the music coupled with the soulful vocals create a song that feels as if it should have been created right around the beginning of the first British Invasion by the English bands that were just then discovering the music of the Blues players like B.B. King or John Lee Hooker.

The track has a definite quality that belongs to that particular time in music but also seems to carry with it a certain timeless feel to it so it doesn’t seem so dated. On “Let down Your Guard,” Boston’s Canary creates a strong track that gives their fans a slightly different take on the band’s more contemporary feel to their music. With this track, the band proves that there are still people out there who care about the music that influenced them. No matter whether you are a fan of the more modern rock music or a fan of Classic Rock, “Let down Your Guard” from Canary is a strong track that satisfies either musical mindset.

 
Artist: Canary
Single Review: “Let down Your Guard”
Review by Matheson Kamin

Rating: 5 stars (out of 5)

Click HERE for the live video of “Let down Your Guard” from Canary.