Archive for albums

2016, so far…

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 26, 2016 by TheManicBlogger

 

Its getting close to year’s end, so we thought we would recap some of our favorite releases in 2016. Somewhere in here could be our album of the year….

 

Young Benjamins-“Losing Our Shadows”

 

The Everywheres“Dignity Fever”

 

Sidewatcher“Otra Vez”

 

The Auras-“Saturn Day”

 

The Tracks

 

Propeller“Fall Off The World”

 

The Corsets“Monta Sanica”

 

Fruition“Labor Of Love”

 

The Counterfactuals

 

Hazen Sage“Thrive”

 

Keith Morris & The Crooked Numbers“The Dirty Gospel”

 

The Minnows

While there is no album, yet, and no date set for release, we are hoping this band from Belfast can get something released in 2016. After listening to several of the tracks slated to appear on a new album, we know it will Irish rock.

 

 

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2016-WE’RE SO EXCITED!

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 17, 2016 by TheManicBlogger

Here are a few good reasons that we are excited by 2016. There are new releases due from some of our favorite Indie bands, this year.

 

minnows55Stalwarts of the Belfast scene, The Minnows are set to release a long awaited, and long overdue album. If the track, ‘Oh Man‘,  is any indication of the road the band is on, this will be EPIC!

 

youngbenjamins55Saskatoon, Canada’s, Young Benjamins, last released an album in 2013. 3 years later, and we can’t wait to get our hands on this.

http://youngbenjamins.com/album/340928/beware-of-me?autostart=true

 

lostboys55The darlings of Southhampton, U.K., The Lost Boys are set for a 2016 release. Check out ‘China In The Sink‘, and you’ll be as excited as we are for this one.

 

 

 

thecorsets55We have heard, that Toronto, Canada’s, The Corsets are working on a release. The new track, ‘Drivin’ Away‘, has us sitting here with our fingers crossed.

 

 

 

 

jp55Toronto‘s Cameron House regulars, Jane’s Party, have an album set for release in the spring.  Its been about 3 years since their last release, and after hearing ‘Coming On Strong‘, well, we hope its an early spring.

 

 

 

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MUST HAVE CANADIAN INDIE ALBUMS-November 2013

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 1, 2013 by TheManicBlogger

THE PYGMIESInside Your Mind

pig1The Pygmies have nailed it. The sound is captivating and the songs are brilliantly written.  I enjoy the 2 1/2 minute tunes, which are written in a pop style-short and simple, and give me the sense that these were recorded live in one take. These guys are adept at dropping garage melodies into 1960’s pop, and 60’s pop melodies into garage music. They have a distinct knack for vocal melodies and harmonies, and a great sense of humor. I only wish that this was a double album. The Pygmies have developed a style that gives me The Zombies and The Kinks with a kiss of The Flaming Lips, and they have made it work. Definitely a must have album.

http://thepygmies.bandcamp.com/

https://icantbelievemyearz.wordpress.com/2013/11/22/the-pygmies-inside-your-mind/

JENNY AND THE FELINESDon’t Look Back

 j&f1Not Canadian, but the music is so amazingly good, I don’t care. This band rocks. This band rolls. Jenny And The Felines does it all. Don’t Look Back is a wondrous compilation of memorable tunes with catchy hooks and melodies. They have created a unique blend of 1960’s and 1970’s music with an alternative edge. The songs all fall within the 2-3 minute range, and contain simple, straightforward yet meaningful lyrics. Jenny Cat writes amazing tunes, with insanely good choruses. The guitar solos and riffs are short, precise and intense. This woman can write songs. This woman can sing. This woman can play guitar. Simple music. Great songs. Nothing forced and nothing overwhelming. Don’t Look Back is a way cool 60’s feel good journey. Listen and then listen again. Once is definitely not enough. One of the most exciting albums I have heard in a long, long time. Destined to be on the short list for I Can’t Believe My Earz Album Of The Year.

http://jennyandthefelines7.bandcamp.com/

https://icantbelievemyearz.wordpress.com/2013/11/27/jenny-and-the-felines-dont-look-back/

THE RED RAILS

rr4These guys know how to rock. Kim Vincent (guitar, vocals), Chris Slaney (bass, backing vocals), and Steve Brogno (drums)  play noting but great music. Power-rock/blues at its best. Every song elicits shade of Cream. It is evident in the Jack Bruce vocals and bass line, the bluesy riffs,  and the Ginger Baker drumming. The songs are wonderfully written and executed to perfection. Just when you think you’ve got the song figured out, there is a change, a transition, something you don’t expect. And it fits. Power rock cool. Definitely on the short list for best album of 2013.

http://www.theredrails.com/

https://icantbelievemyearz.wordpress.com/2013/11/12/the-red-rails/

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THE PYGMIES-Inside Your Mind

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 22, 2013 by TheManicBlogger

pig5Out of the frozen Canadian Prairies come The Pygmies, reinventing Western Canadian music. This Calgary, Alberta garage-pop/punk band with roots in the 60s and 70s, have released 3 albums in the past 2 years, and thankfully, I have listened to them all.

pig3The January 2012 EP  The Pygmies, contains 2 tracks, “Because You’re Mine” and “Can’t Get You Outta My Head“. The songs are amazingly well crafted, with wonderful melodies. Reminiscent of early Kinks, they contain great riffs and solos, with an edge. Sort of The Kinks meet The Ramones.

pig2Pygmy Parumpapumpum, one of my favorite album titles of all time,  contains 4 tracks, and was released in November 2012 with, as you guessed, an Xmas theme. Songs like “Santa Claus“, “Father Christmas“, and “Pygmy Xmas” offer a Punk/Pop perspective of the holiday season by delivering great harmonies, amazing riffs and transitions, and some very cool drumming. The title track, an instrumental  take on the classic Christmas tune, intertwines itself with a verse or 2 of Silent Night, played with way cool psych guitar effects, and amazing 60’s organ. A way cool Xmas album.

pig1The 10 track Inside Your Mind, released in November 2013, has made the short list of our Canadian Indie Album Of The Year. Refreshingly simple, yet intense, this album has blown me away. “Hold Tight” has great effects and nice harmonies, while “Death March” gives us a great 60’s pop song with a wonderful melody and great harmony placement and shades of The Ramones. “I Can’t Get Out” , a perfectly executed garage-pop tune foreshadows the surf guitar riff, solo and Beatle ending of “Last Night“. The keyboard solo of “Inside Out“, with its early The Pretenders feel, and the obvious The Kinks influence of “End Of Time” make these prototypical  pop songs. The vocals on “No Connection” are tremendous and I really dig the 60’s ending. The pounding drums and ethereal harmonies of “Cannibal” are a perfect counterbalance to the much slower tempo. The heavy garage sound with a 1960’s vocal melody and organ of the title track remind me of something in a 1960’s teen beach movie. And I really like it. My favorite track, “Chain Reaction“, opens the album with incredible keys, a great melody, and way cool riffs and guitar effects. Sort of Smash Mouth with a 60’s twist. This song plays over and over in my head.

pig4The Pygmies have nailed it. The sound is captivating and the songs are brilliantly written. I enjoy the 2 1/2 minute tunes, which are written in a pop style-short and simple, and give me the sense that these were recorded live in one take. These guys are adept at dropping garage melodies into 1960’s pop, and 60’s pop melodies into garage music. They have a distinct knack for vocal melodies and harmonies, and a great sense of humor. I only wish that this was a double album. The Pygmies have developed a style that gives me The Zombies and The Kinks with a kiss of The Flaming Lips, and they have made it work. Definitely a must have album.

You can listen to The Pygmies here:   http://thepygmies.bandcamp.com/

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https://icantbelievemyearz.wordpress.com/2013/05/28/review-archives/

RTDS

Radio That Doesn’t Suck. All The Time. http://rtds.ca/

MUST HAVE CANADIAN INDIE ALBUMS-October 2013

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 26, 2013 by TheManicBlogger

nursery1THE NURSERYCarnival Nature

One of our top picks for album of the year, The Nursery deliver a psych/rock/pop sound that is just incredible. Not a bad track on the disc. Eccentric. Esoteric. Weird. Great songs with amazing production values. This is a must have for your collection. A thoroughly enjoyable wild ride.

https://icantbelievemyearz.wordpress.com/2013/09/28/the-nursery-carnival-nature/

tracerflare2TRACER FLAREBlack Box

This 5 track EP mixes new wave, with alternative rock and then adds progressive rock overtones. beautifully written and played. An eclectic retro-pop-rock sound with an edge.

https://icantbelievemyearz.wordpress.com/2013/10/08/tracer-flare-black-box/

ee2EURASIAN EYESSilent Cries

Synth rock like it was meant to be played. This UK duo writes great songs with intricate melodies and images. If you like synth rock, this is it.

https://icantbelievemyearz.wordpress.com/2013/10/15/eurasianeyes-silent-cries/

https://icantbelievemyearz.wordpress.com/2013/05/28/review-archives/

RTDS

Radio That Doesn’t Suck. All The Time.

MUST HAVE CANADIAN INDIE ALBUMS-July 2013

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 30, 2013 by TheManicBlogger

With the somewhat disturbing and unpredictable weather we  experienced in July, there was ample opportunity to stay indoors and listen to some amazing music created by Independent artists. Here are our picks for the MUST HAVE CANADIAN INDIE ALBUMS for July 2013.

yb2YOUNG BENJAMINS

These Saskatoon natives write amazingly well crafted songs and execute them to perfection. Incorporating pop rock, blues and middle eastern influences, Less Argue delivers. Strong vocals, great melodies and tremendous musical insight allows this young band to make the kind of album they want to make. Esoteric, eclectic and entertaining..  Ten tracks take you places you never knew you could get to. A must for every collection. You can purchase Less Argue at https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/less-argue/id646416786 and http://www.dollartone.com/store

https://icantbelievemyearz.wordpress.com/2013/07/21/young-benjamins-less-argue/

JANE’S PARTYjane's party1

This Toronto quartet released their album, Hot Noise just in time for summer. Loaded with pop-rock songs, the album is highlighted by the intricate melodies and sophisticated harmonies. Dance-able, singable and enjoyable. Somewhere between The Kinks and The Beach Boys, Jane’s Party is an event not to be missed. Purchase at https://itunes.apple.com/ca/album/hot-noise/id647398702

https://icantbelievemyearz.wordpress.com/2013/06/03/janes-party-hot-noise/

Toniks1THE TONIKS.

About to be released in September,  Rise And Shine is a trip back to 1965, London. Influenced by The Beatles, Badfinger and Squeeze, this UK band has perfected the sound that filled the airwaves 47 years ago. Packed with tracks that deal with life, love and human relations, this is a fun filled trip to a simpler time. Amazing melodies, wonderful harmonies combined with horns and strings, each song is pop perfection. If you purchase nothing else this year, purchase this. A definite must have. The album will be available through iTunes and directly through The Toniks website.

https://icantbelievemyearz.wordpress.com/2013/07/26/the-toniks-rise-and-shine/

https://icantbelievemyearz.wordpress.com/2013/05/28/review-archives/

MY WORLD GOES POP

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 10, 2013 by TheManicBlogger

My venture into popular music began with an uncle, 10 years my senior, who was entrenched in the girl groups of the early 1960s. The first songs I remember listening to were the delightfully unsophisticated  “My Boyfriend’s Back” by The Angels, ” He’s A Rebel” by The Crystals and The Chiffons’He’s So Fine“.   I spent numerous hours ingesting  the harmonies and the melody lines of these and other pop classics.

The Ronettes

The Ronettes

And just when I thought I had heard all there was to hear, I discovered The Ronettes. They were amazing. Insanely different. Veronica Bennett, her sister Estelle and her cousin Nedra Talley created a sound so different than anything I had heard before. It was Ronnie’s (Veronica) voice that drew me in. It was Phil Spector‘s production and the now infamous Wall Of Sound that kept me there. ‘Baby I Love You” and “Be My Baby”  kept me listening over and over again. I got my own 45 of “Be My Baby”. I played it and played it. I drummed along with it on pots and pans. I knew every nuance of the song. musically and vocally. I adored Ronnie’s voice and her vocal inflections. I  still do. The power of her voice  blows me away. And so began my epic adventure with rock and roll.

I heard The Beatles many times on the radio before I saw them on The Ed Sullivan Show. It was then that I knew I wanted to be, no, needed to be a musician. I wanted to make music. I wanted to be a Beatle.  A plot was hatched to dispose of Ringo. Why not? I was quite proficient on the pots and pans, and how much different could the drums be? I wanted to be a drummer. I asked for drums for my birthday, and I got a guitar. What the hell. I learned to play and began writing songs.

I dove in to the British Invasion, headfirst. I spent years harboring vinyl from across the ocean. Listening to The Dave Clark 5, The Hollies, whose harmonies were some of the most complex I had heard, and The Kinks, who wrote incredible pop songs and played them like a rock band,  allowed me to intercept the North American bands who were now emulating the British sound. And so, Tommy James and The Shondells, The Grass Roots,  and The Lovin’ Spoonful were added to my ever growing list of must have vinyl. The Beach Boys were added when I heard Pet Sounds. “God Only Knows” is a remarkable song . The harmonies are deep and full. Changes in tempo and time signature reflect Brian Wilson‘s genius. I was set. I was in pop paradise. In 1966-67, as The Beatles experimented with psychedelica, I did as well,  finding  gems in  Blues Image, Spirit, and a host of other insanely talented bands.

The Pretenders

The Pretenders

On my 13th birthday, I received my own drum kit. I had fallen ass backwards into Progressive Rock and was living and breathing Yes; amazing musicians, with the ability to incorporate so many different melodies, time signatures and themes into one perfectly crafted work. Yes led me to King Crimson, Flash and inevitably to Pink Floyd, who made the complex seem simple and the simple sound complete. . How cool was that?  I started a band, but I just couldn’t shake my passion for pop. My fondness for Pagliaro, 5 Man Electrical Band, and Badfinger, created the sound and direction of my musical psyche. New Wave delivered Nick Lowe, Elvis Costello, and The Pretenders. One of my all time favorite bands,The Pretenders were pure pop. Unforgettable melody lines, great hooks, amazingly simple yet catchy riffs permeated each song. And Chrissy Hynde looked so cool holding a guitar.

Gotta Have Pop

Gotta Have Pop

To satisfy my passion, I have always looked for new artists playing pop. Over the years I have found The Pursuit Of Happiness, The Bob Segarini Band, and Sloan. Segarini is pop genius. His ability to hear the music long before it is ever played sets him out as one of the truly great pop song writers. Once referred to as the Canadian Nick Lowe, Segarini’s Gotta Have Pop  is a classic . I have, more recently found some amazing talent out there in bands named The Creekside Strays, The Micronite Filters, The Research Turtles,  Toxic Melons and The Toniks. There are so many more that I have yet to discover. I can hardly wait! Recently a friend of mine who travels The Oregon Trail looking for new music introduced me to No Small Children. I have just started my auditory stalking of this band so any verdict at this time would be premature. He rarely steers me wrong. I will go on record as saying that they have something, and I suspect it is highly contagious as I can’t seem to stop listening. My fondness for all music lies in  melodies and harmonies. It began with the girl vocal groups and is as strong today as it ever was.

https://icantbelievemyearz.wordpress.com/2013/05/28/review-archives/