Posts Tagged ‘rock and roll’

Custom | Flat Out FastEvery day, there is less and less people out there produce rock and roll the way it should sound. Most of the music out there today comes more from producers than it does from bands that are there simply to create music for the sake of making music. One band out there today that is making rock and roll that sounds real and authentic is Seattle-based rock band Custom.

Custom consists of Jacque Hartless – Vocals, Corey Petro – Guitar, John Norton – Guitar, Paul Yarnold – Bass and Brandon Wilsey – Drums. The band is celebrating the release of their new CD entitled Flat Out Fast.

Flat Out Fast from Custom begins with the track “Stop”. The driving beat of the track mixed with the power of the guitars from Cory Petro and John Norton creates a track with lots of energy. The interaction between Petro and Norton helps to add a lot of energy from the guitars to the music of the song and that energy makes for a perfect way to begin the release.

The album continues with the song “Buzz Zone”. With this track, the band kicks up the energy of their music and also adds just a touch of humor to the band’s release. The lyrics “Well, I lost my mind. I never used it much anyway” lets you know that while the band seems to take music seriously, they still have a sense of humor. The driving pace of the music gives the music a lot of energy to go along with the humor that comes with every one of the unfortunate events that the singer sings about. After listening to “Buzz Zone,” you feel a lot better that it isn’t you going through all the bad luck that Jacques Hartless sings about in the song.

The album continues with the song “Because of You”. The track begins with music produced exclusively by bassist Paul Yarnold and drummer Brandon Wilsey. The interaction between just the bass and drums creates a strong base for the rest of the band to build the music on. Once the rest of the group joins in, the resulting track feels like a Classic Rock track from a band that knows how to make use of their influences. The track brings back the feel of rock and roll and gives the listener just a glimpse of what music should sound like.

The title track of “Flat Out Fast” brings to mind someone like Bon Jovi or other rock bands from back in the eighties. The vocals stylings of Jacque Hartless that bring to mind the sounds of strong rock vocalists like Robert Plant. The strong rock feel of the music and the strong pace of the song along with those vocals from Hartless create a track that rock lovers who miss the sounds of power rock will really enjoy. The title track for Custom’s new release of Flat Out Fast is just what you want for rocking out to.

The track “Punching Sand” starts off slow as the music has and easy and light feel to it. That doesn’t last long as Custom picks up the energy and the pace of the music. The heavy feel of the music goes along with the lyrics of a person looking for a way to release a lot of anger. The track once again shows off the energy that Custom produces in its music.

The band slows things down with the final track on the release, “Say Goodbye Again”. The slower pace of the music just seems to intensify the band’s music. The band works well on this track as they prove that faster is not necessarily better. Even with the slower pace, “Say Goodbye Again” proves to be one of the best tracks on the new release from Custom.

From beginning to end, Custom’s new release entitled Flat Out Fast proves that rock and roll is still alive, as long as you can find it. The Seattle-based band takes the listener on a musical journey that will bring back memories of the rock and roll bands that really knew what music was supposed to sound like. And because Custom is currently creating the same type of music that seemed to have all but disappeared, the band’s new album of Flat Out Fast is just the thing if you have been looking for something new for your rock and roll collection.
Reviewer: Matheson Kamin
Rating: **** (four stars)

To check out the music from Custom, check out the band’s ReverbNation profile.


The city of Sumrall, Mississippi is home to the band Arkos. The quintet is made up of Zach Chambliss on Lead Vocals, Chase Eaton on Guitar, Dillon Douglas on Guitar & Vocals, Caleb Herrington on Bass & Vocals, Kaden Stevens on Drums & Vocals. Arkos is a band that has already gained some notoriety despite their limited amount of time together as a band. One of the biggest accomplishments for the band is winning the C&M Music’s Rock War 8. One of the reasons for that honor is the band’s style of rock and roll. The resulting sound of the music from Arkos would match up well with the likes of Sevendust and Seether. Arkos is currently promoting their song “In Your Eyes”. “In Your Eyes” is a modern rock track that any rock fan would enjoy. The song begins with a solo guitar that creates a very strong riff before the rest of the band joins in. Once the rest of the band fills out the music, the song ends up having a very driving feel to the music. The unrelenting pace at which the music travels ensures that the song will stay strong throughout the entire length of the track, even when the music takes on a slightly lighter feel for a few measures. The slower pace of that section of the song allows for the listener to hear the playing ability of the band. That slower passage also features a nice guitar solo that also allows for Chase Eaton and Dillon Douglas to show off their skills as guitarist. The track also features a refrain that is surprisingly catchy that will probably end up getting caught in your head. The song is very strong and will leave any rock and roll fan wanting more from this relatively new band that is well on their way.


To check out the band Arkos and their music, go to the band’s Reverbnation profile.


Tom Levin is a Sweden-born musician who has spent time creating music. Whether in a band or by himself, Levin has created several albums of music. Levin has just recently created a new album called Them Feet. For the new release, Levin called upon several people who helped to flesh out the music on the release. Along with Levin, other people included in the album are Adam Börjesson, who adds vocals, guitar, mandolin, bass, keyboards and percussion; Kalle Persson, who adds vocals, and percussion; Carl Ekerstam: electric guitar and pedal steel and others.

Them Feet from Tom Levin begins with the album’s title track. “Them Feet” is a track that features a strong groove that contains a lot of Blues flavor that goes along with a lot of Folk feeling. While Levin comes from Sweden, the two musical genres come together to form a sound that has a very American feel to it. For that reason and others, Tom Levin can easily be classified as Americana. This is one track that definitely falls into that category. With the strong groove and the Folk/Blues mixture coming together creates a strange but fascinating musical backdrop for what ultimately ends up being a romantic song about a man who will always want to dance with his lover.

While the track “Them Feet” has a simple Blues/Folk feel to it, the track “I Raise My Flag” contains a feel that is a lot more connected with the modern-day music genres. The track feels more like something that would be found on Top 40 Rock radio formats. The lyrics to the track are from the point of view of someone who has found their voice and is ready to stand up and be counted. The song can easily be considered a personal anthem, of sorts.

Staying in a slightly political vein, the track “As Long As it’s Good” seems to fully bleed Folk-Rock in its musical makeup. On the song, Tom Levin seems to channel Canadian musician Bruce Cockburn; in fact, “As Long As it’s Good” seems to bring to mind the sound and mindset of Cockburn’s track “If I Had a Rocket Launcher”. While Cockburn makes no bones about his anger about the situation he sings about, Levin sings about trying to make the world better. And while the two tracks come from different points of view, the two musicians try as hard as they can to get their points across. To that end, “As long As it’s Good” is as much an anthem of today’s world as Cockburn’s song was of that era.

With the track “Company Man,” Tom Levin creates a track that is one of the more unusual songs on his Them Feet album. The track features a rather strong beat from percussionist Kalle Persson while also containing a painfully slow pace to the music. That pace stays with the song throughout the length although the energy of the music does pick up sixty percent of the way through, or so. It actually takes two run-throughs to the song to actually appreciate the song.  When you understand what Levin is going for with the track, it is at that point that you will start to like the song.

While many of the tracks on Them Feet by Tom Levin have a full musical background, the music on the song “June’s Memory Lane” is sparse with just an electric guitar creating the music. As with other songs on this release, Tom Levin knows how to grab on to your emotions. “June’s Memory Lane” features the storyline of a woman on her way to hospice and the driver who takes her on one last drive around places that meant something special to her during her lifetime. The simple and sparse guitar accompaniment seems to amplify the emotional feeling in the lyrics to the song. While it’s a lovely song, it may not be the wisest move to listen to the song if you just recently said goodbye to a loved one. So be warned.

Them Feet by Tom Levin is the type of album that is great to find every once in a while as the feeling in the music changes from track to track and keeps the album from getting stale. Each song on the release has its own style and that adds to the variety in the music. The one thing all of the songs on the album do have in common is the fact that Levin knows how to reach you, emotionally. Because of that, this is one release that definitely proves that Levin is a very good songwriter.

Rating: **** (four stars)

Check out the video to “Them Feet” by Tom Levin.

Check out this album and other music by Tom Levin by going to his Soundcloud profile.





ImageLindsey Buckingham Palace is a four-piece rock band from the Washington, D.C. area. After being together for several years, the line-up for the band changed from the original trio setting. The current version of the band is now a quartet made up of Mike Hill, Mark Minicucci, Marc Rothschild and Made Ployamornrat. The band features a Hard Rock style with Classic Rock and Heavy Metal as influences that would make any fan of Rock and Roll happy. After having put out one EP, the band is currently in the middle of creating a new release. One of the songs that will be included on the upcoming CD is the song “She Don’t Like”. “She Don’t Like” is a track that features a sound that brings to mind bands from back in the eighties like Van Halen, Bon Jovi, Aerosmith and others. The song features a very strong bassline, which makes sense as the song started from a bass riff and was built up from there. The bass and drums begin the song with the guitar joining in after about 15 seconds. The resulting groove created by the bass, guitar and drums creates some of the hardest rock and roll to be made in a long time as the song finds the band incorporating some Blues influence into the track to truly make the song feel as authentic as those songs that came several decades before it. The guitar solo near the end of the track adds just the right amount of power to the track. If this track is any type of indication, the upcoming release from Lindsey Buckingham Palace should be worth every minute.

Reviewer: Matheson Kamin

 Rating: ***** (five stars)

To check out “She Don’t Like” and other songs by Lindsey Buckingham Palace, check out the band’s profile on ReverbNation.



Bryan Banks is one of those musicians who took it upon himself to create his music on his own. When you have a musician who does everything on his own, the results could either be good or bad, depending on the talent of the individual. With Bryan Banks, there is a definite talent there that can’t be denied, as evident from his song “Discard the Dream”. The track features a solid rock feel to the music as Banks creates the track by playing the guitar, bass and drums by himself. “Discard the Dream” turns out to be a solid track of Rock and Roll that contains plenty of energy to go along with the lyrics of a relationship coming to an end. Bryan Banks seems to take many different flavors of Rock and Roll when creating his music. His music takes some Rock and Roll, Funk, and Grunge and mixes all those styles together in the sound that makes up the music to the track. Throughout the song, the most impressive thing is Banks’ ability to, not only play the guitar, but to also create a multi-layered feel to the guitar part. With the track, Bryan Banks proves that he is not only a good musician, talented writer and fine vocalist, but he can take all of those talents and combine them together while creating his music. Since it is with the first time through the song that you get used to what Banks is doing, repeated listening to the song actually makes Bryan Banks’ “Discard the Dream” better. “Discard the Dream” is both a strong track and a song that shows the definite potential of a musician who is finding his voice in both his music and his talent as a guitarist.

***** (Five Stars)

There is a movement in the music industry to create fresh sounds by combining elements from different music genres. Illinois-based Midwest Hype is one particular band that has created a new style by taking rock and roll and mixing it with several other genres. The resulting style from the band takes music in a whole different direction while keeping lovers of rock and roll happy.

Midwest Hype contains seven musicians who all come together to create the band’s style. The band consists of George Matthew Prellwitz on lead vocals and guitar, Max Kepler on drums, Nathan Miller on bass, Kevin Krizmanich on keyboards, Ben Morrisey on sax and Scott Whitford on trumpet and Justin “Ideal” Diehl as the vocalist/emcee. Along with the rock base, the band’s sound also incorporates jazz, R&B and hip-hop together to make a style that everyone can get behind. The band took several of their songs and entered the studio, where they worked with producer Steven Gillis who took their music and created a very strong release entitled Dayglow. Dayglow from Midwest Hype is a six-song release. And while the release is rather short, the powerful music created by Midwest Hype will keep the listener hanging on to each note played by the talented seven-piece band.

Dayglow begins with the song “Behind Our Eyes”. Right from the very first note of this track, you get a very good indication of what the band is all about. The track contains a solid reggae base to the music. Along with the reggae, you hear plenty of jazz influence through the playing Ben Morrisey on sax and Scott Whitford on trumpet. And while the words from Justin “Ideal” Diehl are done in a hip hop rhythm, his words fit well with the rest of the track, without adding any unneeded attitude you usually get from hip hop emcees.

Diehl is the first member of Midwest Hype that takes the spotlight on “Elastic Booty Shorts,” the second track of Dayglow. He takes the lead on the vocals while the band really takes amount of jazz on the approach to the music of the track. The hip hop/jazz fusion on this rock hybrid song creates a strong and commercial radio-friendly song that many will find very entertaining.

While the song “All is Water” still contains the same mixture of jazz, rock, reggae that is found on the rest of the release, the smooth approach to the song is a little softer than the previous tracks, which makes it perfect to be played on today’s smooth jazz radio stations.

The beginning of the track “Runaway” brings back just enough of the memory of Bob Marley to give fans of straight reggae music a reason to smile with a sound that seems to be reminiscent of Marley’s “No Woman, No Cry”. George Matthew Prellwitz’s voice creates a strong focal point to draw the listener in. And when the band brings back the rest of their hybrid sound later in the track, they keep the energy up with Morrisey’s sax playing and Justin “Ideal” Diehl’s rapping.

The track “Do or Die” is probably the closest thing to a rock and roll feeling you’ll find on the release, as the band takes the song into a ska direction: The electric guitar from Prellwitz combined with the horns of Ben Morrisey and Scott Whitford make a strong rock/jazz combination that any ska lover will enjoy.

The Dayglow release from Midwest Hype comes to an end with the track “People of America”. Like a lot of the songs in reggae music, “People of America” has a strong message within the lyrics. The lyrics speak of enjoying the peace of our time.

Dayglow from Midwest Hype is a strong six-song release that incorporates many musical genres into one style that will make jazz fans, rock fans, and even hip hop fans happy. The songs created by Midwest Hype give the listener a clear view of the talent that each member of the band possesses, and the talent of the band as a whole. The only thing that may be a problem is the length of the CD: With only six songs, the release is over way too soon.

Click HERE to see the video to the band’s song “Do Or Die“.