Archive for 1980s

I SEE ANGELS-Nausea

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 17, 2017 by TheManicBlogger

 

I’m not sure how I missed the August 2016 release of this 3 track ep from Manchester, UK based I See Angels. The songs are brilliantly melodic, playing in my head long after listening, with cool hooks, and seamless changes. There is a wonderful 1980’s art rock vibe going on, reminiscent of The Psychedelic Furs. This pop-emo rock band, delivers way cool guitar, dynamite keyboards, clever arrangements, and perfectly ethereal vocal tracks. An insanely great listen, that will have you floating along the waves of melodious dreams. Favorite track: ‘Nausea‘. You can stream and purchase at a ‘name your price’ option here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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ATOMIC STUFF

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 31, 2016 by TheManicBlogger

atomic stuffA few months ago, I was contacted by Atomic Stuff, a hard rock/heavy metal music promotions company in Italy. Shortly after Christmas, I received several CDs in the mail. I had no idea that this  was going on in Italy!

I listened to”Wild Life“, a 9 track album from John Dallas, a guitar player whose real name is Luca Stanzani. The guitar centric, melodic metal sound offers john dallasslick riffs, and solos. The vocals and harmonies are wonderful, and the songs are well written. There are some nice solos, and cool production values. There is even a cool ballad. Favorite tracks: ‘Under Control‘, and ‘Freedom‘. If you like your rock hard and loud, this is 1 for you.

Red Morris, aka Maurizio Parisi released  “Lady Rose“, in 2015. A wonderful red morrisinsteumental progressive rock album, it offers sweet keyboards and exciting guitar.The melodies and musical themes wander in and out of the dynamite arrangements. There are cool changes and nice effects. One of those albums, that I never get tired of listening to. Favorite track: ‘My Life Blues‘, which delivers an amazingly wonderful rhythm section.

 

mud hornetWould You Like Something Fresh“, a release by Mad Hornet, contains 11 tracks of heavy rock, splattered with 1980s hair/glam rock sensibilities. The songs are well written, with nice changes and memorable hooks. The melodies and harmonies rock and there are some cool effects. The sound is reminiscent of something between Van Halen and Poison. Favorite tracks: ‘Dyin’ Love‘, and ‘Roses Under The Rain‘.

 

So, there you have it. 3 albums and artists out of Italy, being promoted by Atomic Stuff. You can check out their web site and facebook page, and the artists can be located at the sites below.. Happy listening!

http://https://www.facebook.com/John-Dallas-1712090355681829/?fref=ts

https://www.facebook.com/nicemint.rock?fref=ts

https://www.facebook.com/maurizio.parisi.522?fref=ufi

 

 

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JAPANESE TONGUE SISTERS-Peacock

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 23, 2015 by TheManicBlogger

jts33Japanese Tongue Sisters, based in Melbourne, Australia,released ‘Peacock‘, a 5 track ep in September 2015. The songs are wonderfully written, filled with amazing changes, great melodies, and wonderfully touching lyrics.

All I Can Regret‘ is excitingly acoustic, with a dynamite string sound, and terrific vocals. The keys on ‘Lose My Head‘ are wonderful, while ‘Perfect Stain‘ delivers a way cool 1980’s electro-pop vibe. ‘Heartbreak Tango‘ has some amazing piano, and I dig the echo. My favorite track, ‘Ma’s New House‘, offers a sweet acoustic track under what sounds like slide guitar, some wonderful harmonies, and a cool country feel.

The album has an ethereal feel, yet delivers a full sound. There are tasteful effects blended into an eclectic ‘Roo Pop‘ sound. A wonderful album with so much going on, it will require several listens to catch it all. Check it out for yourself, and then buy a few copies-share it with your family and friends. Christmas is coming, right?

 

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THE CONTACTS

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 5, 2015 by TheManicBlogger

While there isn’t a recent album out there, The Contacts have some way cool music floating around cyberspace.

the contacts32003’s Black & White Days is an insanely good body of work. Despite being recorded in a small home studio, the album rocks. At times I hear shades of Pink Floyd, The Kinks, and Zappa. There are jazz, pop, punk, and rock vibes throughout. The songs are melodious pokes at life, uniquely written and arranged, incorporating wonderfully played organ, some way cool bass lines, and interesting vocal tracks. The harmonies, borrowed from 1960s Brit Pop, are as perfect as one can get in a basement. The changes are great, the hooks standout, and the vocals are wonderfully raw, as they deliver some bizarre thoughts. Pop-Rock, kissed by Punk. A wonderful sound. A wonderful time. Notable tracks include ‘Rain, Rain, Rain‘, ‘Road Rage‘, and ‘Have A Biscuit‘.

 

 

 

the contactsThe band’s Soundcloud page has a truckload of other tracks as well. There is the 1980’s electro pop style ‘No Way Out‘, that reminds me of Love & Rockets. ‘If You Only Knew‘, offers a dynamite melody, electric piano, and way cool organ. You need to check this out. Head over to Soundcloud, and check them out on facebook. I have heard through the British grapevine, that there are thoughts of heading into a studio and working on another album. Could we really be that lucky? I hope so. The Contacts are unique, and interesting. The music is simply a good time!

 

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AUKLAND-Rookie

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 20, 2015 by TheManicBlogger

aukland2So, now there are 2 things from Mississauga, On that impress me: Hazel McCallion, and pop-rockers Aukland, who recently released their album, Rookie.With 10 exceptional songs, filled with wonderfully exciting melodies, cool riffs, a dynamic rhythm section, and great changes, I haven’t wanted to stop listening. The fullness of the sound pulls the album together, and the incredible energy level keeps aukjland1me wanting more. The arrangements are great, and I am particularly fond of the 2 guitar sound. Notable tracks include ‘Doing It Right‘, with its cool backing vocals; ‘Worry Some‘, which delivers a dynamite melody, and way cool guitar; and ‘Open Fire‘, which has a nice 1980’s Wave vibe. Pay particular attention to ‘Curtains & Lights’.  offering a great vocal track, and a beautiful riff. A wonderful song with an exceptional melody, this is a great closing track, for an album and a live performance. The longest track on the album, this could be Aukland’s ‘Free Bird’.

 

 

 

The album rocks. An incredibly fun time, filled with way cool music. The kind of music you crank up on a drive down the highway. Something you should definitely add to your collection. Check it out for yourself.  http://aukland.bandcamp.com/album/rookie and to keep up with events and news, follow them on facebook  https://www.facebook.com/thatstreetnamed?fref=ts

 

 

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SHAGWAGON-The Backbone Of The Night

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 5, 2014 by TheManicBlogger

shagwagon2Orillia, Ontario’s Jack Finlayson & Jacob Thompson are Shagwagon. The band’s debut album, a 6 track EP entitled ‘The Backbone Of The Night‘ was released in July, 2014.

The album opens with “Some Nites“, with way cool production effects, and some dynamite reverb, reminiscent of 1960’s psychedelic rock. The electronic strings are nice, and coupled with the sweet vocals, make this one serene track. ‘The Way That You Move” has a way cool bass line, and what I hear as an electric piano solo, The track has a great chorus with a solid hook, and a wonderful bridge. The cool 1960s vibe is enhanced by some unexpected hand clapping. The nice effects, and slick changes & transitions, make “Morphine” a great track. “Napoleon” offers a wonderfully cool melody, some cool guitar and bass over synthesized effects that slides into a burst of guitar and vocals. The vocal effects are very cool. There are 2 highlight tracks for me. “You’re So Sexy“, delivers cool piano, great shagwagon3vocals, and wonderful changes. The moody, melancholy melody morphs into a dynamite bridge, and then out again. Great effect.The transition into the guitar solo is wonderful, and the incorporation of several different movements into one song is damn cool. Great song. And then, “Thinking About You“, with its great keyboards, cool changes and transitions, and cool vocals, make this my favorite track on the album.The song has an electronic feel, and includes a wonderful solo, and very cool The Beach Boys harmonies. A great mood inducing track that ends with those brilliant harmonies. Killer track.

shagwagon1Shagwagon delivers a terrific album, blending elements of psych-rock, pop, and electro-pop, to deliver an exceptionally unique sound. The songs are well written, with themes that are simple, and innocent. Songs about peace, and love. There are great melodies, and the ability to create mood, and atmosphere is dynamite. The simplicity of it is wonderfully complex. Eccentric, esoteric, and edgy. I am liking this. You need to have at least 1 of these.

http://shagwagon.bandcamp.com/album/the-backbone-of-the-night

 

 

 

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CRAB BUBBLES-“Fool For Your Love”

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 21, 2014 by TheManicBlogger

I was fortunate to receive an advance listen to the new single by Crab Bubbles. Written by Gar Francis, “Fool For Your Love” is scheduled for a November 2014 release on New Jersey Indie label, Bongo Boy Records.

unnamedThe song has a wonderful 1960’s feel, a sort of Paul Revere & The Raiders thing going on, with its dynamite pop melody, and way cool psychedelic effects. There are great riffs, a terrific guitar solo, and a fabulous bridge. Dale Lee Richards‘ vocals are  incredibly powerful, as they sail along with some very cool harmonies. Dynamite song. Definitely one to sing along with. I could go on and on, but I think you should just go check it out for yourselves. And then come November, get yourself a copy or 2. A 1960’s classic merged with 1980’s garage.I don’t believe it gets much better than this!!  I hope there is a Crab Bubbles album!

 

 

 

 

 

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PETER MURRAY-On Druckfarben, And More

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 14, 2014 by TheManicBlogger

pm4I set out to do an interview on the progressive-rock band, Druckfarben. As I sat down with Peter Murray, bassist, I instead found myself immersed in his story. Not a bad afternoon at all.

We began by comparing notes about progressive-rock bands, from Yes, King Crimson, and Flash, to Rush and Kansas. We taked about Gentle Giant. We talked about music. We discussed the lack of airplay progressive-rock received in the 1980s and 1990s and how it could be considered underground. We talked.

Peter is an easy interview. Ask a question and he will talk. He has stories to tell. Stories from his days with Surrender Dorothy and the major label deal; stories of his singer/songwriter solo album; stories of his pm3learning the bass line to Yes’ Close To The Edge, for the first Druckfarben gig . He is animated, and energetic. He has strong opinions on music, and the music industry. He is a musician, but foremost, he is a music fan. His interests cross all genres. If it is good, Peter appreciates and enjoys it.

We discussed The Beatles influence on progressive-rock, and queried whether Sgt. Pepper could have been the 1st progressive-rock album. As Peter sees it, progressive-rock is not so much a genre of music, pm5but an attitude. An attitude that encourages experimentation. An attitude to do something that is not usually done. An attitude that impacts not only the song writing, but the instrumentation and arrangements as well.

We delved into bass players, and I asked about his favorite. In true Peter Murray style, he couldn’t or wouldn’t identify one. Instead, names started swirling around the table: Chris Squire, Geddy Lee, Mark King, Robbie Shakespeare, Stanley Clarke, to name a few. Paul McCartney came up, and it was agreed that he is perhaps the most under rated bassist around. It was here that I saw the true passion for music in this man. He told a story of how, as a writer for Bass Player magazine, he traveled to England to interview Colin Moulding and Mark King. With his face ‘lit up’, he spoke of spending an afternoon at Moulding’s farm house, drinking tea, and listening to the as yet unreleased ‘Apple Venus’.  Very cool.

pm6We talked about Druckfarben, which grew out of  Classic Album’s Live. All of the band members have a love for progressive-rock. They enjoy playing and performing. Peter looks like a man who is having the time of his life. Bassist, song writer, teacher, author,  producer. This is an accomplished man, a Renaissance man, who shows no signs of slowing down.  Despite his impressive resume, there was no name dropping. An incredibly talented guy, who is kind, humble, and grateful.  Peter Murray is simply, a nice guy. A nice guy who just loves music. Hard not to like him.

 

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BONGO BOY TV-Indie Music From Around The World Episode 1031

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 21, 2014 by TheManicBlogger

bbtv1031

 

Another episode of Bongo Boy TV’s Indie Music From Around The World is here. Another great collection of videos that rock.

Radio Drive, featuring Kevin Gullickson are back for another week with ‘A Taste Of Heaven‘.  This band from The United States song combines a strong melody, sweet riffs and a 1980’s feel. Add to that some great visuals, and you have one dynamite video. http://www.radio-drive.com/ A German entry, Hella Donna, featuring None Like Joshua (NLJ), the American rapper, offer ‘Gimme Lights, Camera, Action‘. An interesting fusion of elctro-pop and hip hop  showcases this woman’s great voice, and some wonderful video techniques. http://www.helladonna.com/  An English entry, ‘Hard Heart‘ from Sharp Practise, is a wonderful blues song, with a video appropriately shot in black & white. There are way cool special effects, nice transitions, and some cool keyboards. http://www.sharppractise.com/  Another American entry, Rob Rise On Belief, gives us ‘The Chosen One‘, is an amazingly interesting video. There is acoustic guitar, and dynamite vocals, that kicks into a way cool rock tune, with great guitar and wonderful harmonies. An incredibly powerful song. http://www.robriseonbelief.com/   Also from the United States, Saydah with ‘Bound2Break‘, shows how to make a great music video. Amazing vocals, great piano, and some very cool synthesized horns, filmed in black & white. The minimal instrumentation keeps the focus on this woman’s voice, as it should be. http://www.saydahzufilms.com/  Chand K Nova, delivers ‘Solar Bliss‘ all the way from England. This is a way cool animated video, set amid an instrumental that showcases amazing guitar. All in all, way cool.http://www.reverbnation.com/chandknova

Added to this episode, you lucky viewers, is a sample of Jana Peri’s “Ballerina Of The Bowery“, featuring clips of Jana, Gar Francis, and Kurt Reil, and a drop in spot by Bruce Ferguson of The Easy Outs. What else can I say. The show rocks. 

 

 

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THE MINNOWS-Live At The Belfast Barge

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 6, 2014 by TheManicBlogger

minnows1There are Irish bands I like, and Irish bands I really like. I like U2, The Pogues, and The Cranberries. I really like Them, Thin Lizzy,  The Boomtown Rats, and The Minnows. Originally called Tiberius Minnows, which I like to believe is in homage to the captain of the USS Enterprise, James Tiberius Kirk, this band released several singles and EPs from the late 80s and into 2007. In 2008, now called The Minnows, they released their full length album, Leonard Cohen’s Happy Compared To Me.. It was a great surprise and thrill to find Live At The Belfast Barge. This 10 track album contains songs both old and new.

The album opens with “Roonkin“, filled with great guitar, a wonderful bass line and cool vocals. The effects add another dimension to this pop-rock song, with stellar vocals that be-cry “Oh no, I forgot my guitar. I don’t know how I got this far“. The melody and harmonies are dynamite and the changes rock. One of those songs I wish was 3 minutes longer. The previously unreleased “What Was I Supposed To Do” contains incredible horns and strings sounds and opens with bongo playing. An amazing melody, powerful vocals and a way cool guitar riff, make this one of my favorite ballads of all time.”The Steepest Hill” has great harmonies, and nice electronic effects. The transitions and changes add to the melancholy feel that underlies this track. With cello and bells, “Baby Blue” displays unique instrumentation within a great melody. The way cool guitar solo doesn’t hurt. minnows2September 25” opens with acoustic guitar, and demonstrates amazing song construction. The melody and changes are great, and there is another very cool guitar solo. The Leonard Cohen vocal style of “Why Don’t You Phone Me Anymore“, adds to the great strings effect and wonderful bridge. The melody rocks, and the reference to Sinatra‘s  “My Way“, perfectly suits the male chorus ending. The pop song with an 80’s feel, “Another Rainy Day“, offers a sweet melody, nice harmonies, and wonderful changes and transitions. The harmonized vocals are exceptional.  “Free Man Freeman“, a folky song, has a great melody. The harmonies again, dynamite and the guitar riff, sweet. The synthesizer and great “chain gang” vocalization as the song ends, kill. “Sailing On” has cool synthesizer effects, a sweet melody, and great changes and transitions. The vocals and harmonies are wonderful, and the guitar riff rocks. Add an outstanding chorus and  wonderful strings at the end, and you have a great rock song. Not often does a 20 year old song still kick ass, unless you’re The Beatles. However, “Time Flies” is still an incredible pop song with a rock edge. The amazing melody drifts over great synthesizer. The wonderful harmonies, great bridge, and dynamite hook, nail it. This should  have been an anthem for that generation of disenfranchised youth, or at least, an Irish Football fight song.

photoAside from Yessongs, Waiting For Columbus and The Last Waltz, I have never been a big fan of live albums but I have to add Live At The Belfast Barge to the list of great live albums. The songs are as wonderful as I remember them, and they stand up to the passage of time. The band is insanely cohesive, and the musicianship, extraordinary. I have spent the past week immersed in The Minnows and I can tell you that swimming with the fishes is not a bad thing. This is a must for your collection.

Check out The Minnows:  http://https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Minnows/131768390195614, and get this album. You have until March 15/2014 to go to the band’s facebook page, click LIKE and download the album for FREE.

 

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