Showing posts with label MuzikMan Productions. Show all posts
Showing posts with label MuzikMan Productions. Show all posts

9/26/2019

Rock-Punk-New Wave Review: Roger C. Reale & Rue Morgue-The Collection

Release Date: October 18, 2019
Label:  Rave On Records

Riding on the punk crest of the new wave movement, Roger C. Reale & Rue Morgue released Radioactive, A 12-track blitzkrieg providing enough octane to power a stock car. After shaking up the lineup (G.E. Smith of SNL fame replaced by Mick Ronson of David Bowie fame), the band began recording their second album, Reptiles in Motion. Conflicts between the record company, the studio and the producer put the sessions to rest. Some 40 years later, the recordings are finally seeing the light of day. Combined with Radioactive, this collection provides the ultimate Roger C. Reale & Rue Morgue experience. 

The sound borrows from the Ramones and Johnny Thunders, yet adds enough texture and pop affectations to make it more accessible to the masses. Think power punk mixed with power pop. If Radioactive is a blitzkrieg, then Reptiles in Motion is a more deliberate and sustained attack. Make no mistake, Roger C. Reale & Rue Morgue make the most of each song in this collection. There is little time wasted on prolonged notes, extended verses or spaces between stanzas — the 24 tracks average a modest 3:07 in duration. The blistering guitar and angst-ridden lyrics impose their will with skill and brevity, forcing the listener to react. 

It's hard to believe that songs like "Stop & Go" and "Please Believe Me" from Radioactive never hit the mainstream in 1979. We'll leave this mystery up to the documentary makers, but one could easily see these performances blending in between Graham Parker and Cheap Trick on Don Kirshner's Rock Concert or becoming vanguard new wave music videos. The same could be said for songs like "Radioactive" and "No Secrets" on the follow-up, Reptiles in Motion which would have/should have been released in 1980. 

All in all, The Collection does not disappoint, and despite 40 years between Radioactive and Reptiles in Motion, the power still surges, leaving the listener revived and energized. 

Key Tracks Include: “Stop & Go”, “Please Believe Me”, “Kill Me”, “Radioactive”, “No Secrets”, “Rock it to the Kremlin”.

Tom Endyke
September 22, 2019

Tracks:
01. High Society
02. Dear Dad
03. Stop and Go
04. Pain Killer
05. Rescue Me
06. Kill Me
07. Reach for the Sky
08. Madonna’s Last Stand
09. Please Believe Me
10. Close Inspection
11. Inside Outside
12. I Can’t Control Myself
13. She’s Older Now
14. Pros and Cons
15. Radioactive
16. One More Try
17. No Secrets
18. Debutante Ball
19. Make it be Over
20. I’m in Distress
21. Point Blank
22. Back it Up
23. Living in Anger
24. Rock it to the Kremlin


9/22/2019

Rock - Metal Review: Howling Giant-The Space Between Worlds

Release Date: September 27, 2019
Label: Blues Funeral Recordings
 
Premiering their debut full-length album The Space Between Worlds, Howling Giant proves they have exactly what it takes to go toe-to-toe with some of Rock N’ Roll’s or better yet, Metal’s biggest contenders like Metallica, Smashing Pumpkins, or even Megadeath. Before even reading what the album concept is, you can tell there is a theme that runs through; as though someone is on a journey for victory. 

As you travel through the tracklist, “Ghosts In The Well” is a nice switch-up on the record giving the song a more acoustic vibe, even if it is only temporary. The band does a wonderful job conveying the message of a 9-track journey that almost seems like a video game with some of the track titles. This album is not for the faint of heart, however. It is most certainly is for the veteran Metal lovers because of its heavy tones of vocals and drums. 

The idea of a concept album is great for their first full-length feature. A lot of newer Rock bands have more of a Pop-friendly vibe to them to show themselves as radio-friendly, and like something, the labels (especially the larger labels) can market to the masses. This band revitalizes the fresh-out-of-the-garage-band style that has been largely missed due to the implementation of machines and quick fixes. 
I have little doubt that there wasn’t some technical editing going through the record, as is with most other albums and genres today but, the record flows through the ears like the adventure it tries to display through their sound.

Like me, if you have never heard of Howling Giant, you would probably be interested right of the bat because of their name. Though I am not the biggest Rock or Metal fan of the world, I appreciate real Rock N’ Roll when I hear it. The album is great if you are looking for inspiration with any type of music. If you are trying to solve the latest bad day of your week, or you just need to find an outlet to get oneself through the journey of the day, this record is most definitely for you. Should you not be able to handle the heaviness and emboldening sound of The Space Between Worlds, I suggest you either wake up, or head elsewhere to find what you might deem as “good music."

Gregg Keniston-MuzikMan.net Staff
September 21, 2019

Tracks:

1. Comet Rider
2. Nomad
3. Ghosts in The Wall
4. The River Guide
5. Ice Castle
6. Cybermancer and The Doomsday Express
7. Everlight
8. The Orb
9. Stone Giant

9/06/2019

Meditation Review: Merrill Collins-Every Man, Woman and Child Yoga Flow Suite

Release Date: August 1, 2019
Label: Spiraling Music

I think the best way to start this off is with an introduction to the Every Man, Woman, and Child Yoga Flow Suite I received from the artist.

Every Man, Woman, and Child is a musical presentation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. This year, Spiraling Music has released a dozen new improvisations on the original ballad, which was the first grassroots expression of the UDHR ever performed for the UN (1987). More recently, the chant version won a Global Peace Song Award in 2016.

So, with the beginning of this three-part suite, I am thinking, stress causes disease and kills and music is the ultimate healer and connector to our higher power and higher self. I do not doubt that today. The connection I have with these wonderful music makers is a gift and I treasure it every time I sit down to listen and write my words.

This is a collaborative effort with Merrill Collins and David "Vito" Gregoli producing together at his studio. The featured vocalist is Kimberly Haynes with Laura Halladay on flutes and Maksim Velichkin on cello. Merrill has worked with these talented people extensively (Merrill’s Trio) and the chemistry is evident in the three suites. Don’t be persuaded to believe that this is an EP or 3 quick tracks, it’s actually 56 minutes in length and has been entered as a full album for the 62nd Grammys New Age category. You will hear flutes, wind chimes, percussion, cello and more on this presentation.

These blessed individuals go from strength to strength with all of the instruments and gorgeous vocalizations of Kimberly Haynes on the “We The People” track. The mixture of instruments is musical divinity taking shape before your eyes, ears, and spirit. It will envelop, caress and stimulate you, all at the same time while creating your mediation bubble for healing.

The Every Man, Woman, and Child Yoga Flow Suite is a masterful performance with significant meaning for a world of confusion and negativity that needs healing in every way. If we the people heal, so will the world around us. Mother earth and its inhabitants have hope and it is music like this that injects us with the spiritual energy that drives us down the right roads to the recovery of humanity from shore to shore.

Thank you, Merrill and friends, for helping us to see the light at the end of the road.

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck
September 4, 2019

Founder of:

Review Provided By New Age Music Reviews

Tracks: 
1. Every Man, Woman and Child: Yoga Flow - Om Mani Padme Hum
2. Every Man, Woman and Child: Yoga Flow - Ambient
3. Every Man, Woman and Child: Yoga Flow - We the People



7/02/2019

World Review: Riad Abdel-Gawad-Words of Peace

Release Date: June 21, 2019
Label: Medan Elmusica

Riad Abdel-Gawad is the founder and Executive Director of Midan Elmusica (The Music Square), which exhibits to and informs the US public about what is called: “Arabic Music” from Egypt. (information gleaned from the artist website). There is much more to the story of course.

The importance of Words of Peace goes far beyond the music itself. The Midan Elmusica, Inc. Promotions is a not for profit organization that is promoting this CD release of the artist. So, playing the music, buying the CD or streaming it on ZMR, for instance, all goes into supporting the project.

The recording utilizes 17 singers, chanters and instrumentalists in a music ensemble from Cairo, Egypt. All the music was Composed by Riad Abdel-Gawad.  This is music that is very important on many levels however to the uninformed listener it could have an entirely different meaning. I could not give it a spin without finding out more about the artist that created and why. That made a big difference in my entire perception of what I was hearing.

Words of Peace utilizes 17 singers, chanters and instrumentalists in a music ensemble from Cairo, Egypt. Composed by Riad Abdel-Gawad, Words of Peace cross-pollinates the western oratorio with the eastern wasla and nouba musical traditions into a newly composed 21st-Century work in the World music genre.
Through music, song and chant, Words of Peace offers healing, spiritual and practical tools to our present-day existential dilemma along with offering a social critique of racism, corruption, materialism, and the Climate Crisis. To the story of Adam & Eve, to the history of Egypt and to the narrative of Prophet Muhammed’s striving towards peace through the activism of politics, the result – of the 18-track 53-minute album – is a secular and sacred parable about the plight of our planet and its inhabitants through Arabic and Nubian (African) poetry.
I think all the individuals that contributed deserve a lot of credit for lending their expertise to the music. The vocals are very melodic and so is the music.  I did really enjoy the music; it does get your toes tapping. 

Regardless of the lack of knowledge of the language in the vocals, it did not take away the meaning or overall significance of what I was taking in. 

Words of Peace is exposing world music that many have never had the opportunity to hear, including me. It is reaching out to be heard and I am certain it will be. This is music that can be appreciated in many different ways and I think there is an audience that would be eager to hear this project and learn more about the story behind it.

June 28, 2019
Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck

Founder of:

Review Provided By New Age Music Reviews

Tracks: 
01. The World is a Beautiful Place!
02. The Nay: The Song of the Nile
03. Adam & Eve: The Global Starters
04. The Violin: Instrument of the People
05. The Qanun: Metaphor for the Physical, Spiritual and Universal Rules
06. GOD blessed him (Prophet Mohamed [SAW]) in GOD's heavens
07. The Oud: The Crying Earth (Seven)
08. We wIsh for] Peace, Peace to GOD's Folk in All Places!
09. Oh! Mother Egypt, Your Water (The Nile) is Balm which Changes and Heals our Minds.
10. The Cotton Harvest: An Affirmation of Life
11. Oh Egypt! O Mother of (Life's) Long Struggle!
12. At-Taqaseem: The Egyptian People's Song Without Words
13. Coda (Instrumental)
14. To Every Cry in the (trying) Time Subsides to (Peaceful) Silence
15. All People -- Regarding their Origin -- Originate in Equality
16. Words of Peace: Instrumental Finale
17. Prayer for Peace
18. Peace for Peace


6/25/2019

New Age Meditation: Vickie Dodd & James Hoskins-Found Sound

Release Date: May 31, 2019
Label: Right Brain Records

Vickie Dodd & James Hoskins decided to explore some new territory with the art of creating music that heals. They accomplish this through 8 tracks on their release Found Sound.

Vickie is well versed in the difficult art of throat singing. She not only does it well, but she is also able to command a 4-octave range that covers more than throat singing. Her voice is the main instrument on this project and the cello playing of James Hoskins certainly lends another interesting and pleasant layer to each track. Both artists experts in their field, they are able to record something very unique and expressive that is well equipped to reach an audience eager to receive it.

I had no idea what to expect going into this and I found it to be interesting, different and something that separates itself from what other recording artists are doing today. At times Vickie’s tone is like a didgeridoo, which is fascinating and quite difficult I would estimate. At times it was like something you would hear at a Native American Pow Wow. Quintessentially, what you could anticipate hearing is a meditation album that creates a drone through voice and instrument, which is perfect for focus and the eventuality of meditation, dependent on what level of attainment you may be at of course. The cello does provide music as you would recognize it, just in an entirely different format.

For this listener, it is therapeutic to listen and write about the music as I listen. That is a complete experience for me. When I first started writing reviews I would listen to the album once or twice then sit down and write. What new age, meditation, and relaxation recordings have done is allowed me to reach another level of musical interpretation from me to you with the words you now read. That realization came several years ago however I thought it would be a could analogy to use for this particular album called Found Sound.

Quite literally, I found my way through the sound, and I usually do. So, with that, I invite other listeners to engage themselves down this enlightening path to see what they can find and come to realize about who they are and what direction to go. It is not complicated at all, just hit play and listen then nature will take its course.


Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck

June 25, 2019
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Review Provided By New Age Music Reviews

Tracks:
1. Frequencies of Unconditional Love 05:23
2. Remembering We Are 06:14
3. Forgetting We Were 03:06
4. Thread of Intention 06:37
5. Sublimation of Chance 02:43
6. Matter at Hand 04:58
7. Being Restored 04:01
8. Flower of Bliss 10:02
 



6/20/2019

Instrumental Piano Review: Michele McLaughlin- Memoirs

Release Date: May 24, 2019
Label: Independent

Memoirs will be the fourth album I have had the opportunity to enjoy by pianist Michele McLaughlin. Her reputation in the music community is a stellar one and with the latest release, that kind of positive support and feedback will continue to grow.

The first track is a powerful musical statement. Michele works hard to relay a message to her listeners on “Thankful” You can actually feel the word expressed in the music. Without the human voice to express itself, there are many other ways to do so, particularly through the arts that are visual and audible. 

Talented piano players like Michele take a blank canvas and let their emotions and spirits flow through the ivory keys. I am continually amazed at how beautiful and meaningful this instrumental music can be. Michele is one of those players that gets your attention and holds it with a variety of tempos and rhythms.

One of the more breathtaking tracks in “Northern Lights.” Her playing is exemplary. The pace at which she hits the keys is incredibly fast then within the blink of an eye she changes the entire track into a softer melodious passage then it closes out with an attention-getting deep bass tone. To really appreciate such complex piano playing you have to pay attention to all the layers of music being created and the varying tempos that allow it to change so fast. The transitions Michele makes in her music can be quite a display of technical and innate sense of musicality.

So once again, the brilliance of Michele McLaughlin comes shining through her music with energy, poignancy, grace, and beauty. At times all of those elements are combined to give you a wall of sound that is difficult to imagine with one piano. She does it all with tastefulness and precision on Memoirs.

Memoirs is another triumph for Michele McLaughlin and she has set the bar another notch higher for her contemporaries.

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck
June 20, 2019

Founder of:

Review Provided By New Age Music Reviews

Tracks: 
01. Thankful
02. Pure Joy
03. Dark Moon
04. Triumph
05. Little Love
06. My Life with You
07. Beneath the Surface
08. Alone
09. Winter
10. Northern Lights
11. Peace
12. Dismissed


6/12/2019

Acoustic Instrumental World Fusion Review: Perpetual Motion-Dance of Two Souls

Label: Independent
Release Date: June 1, 2019

2.5 years ago, I discovered the group Perpetual Motion, thanks to the introduction of Josie Quick. Josie is a fabulous violin player with a stellar reputation in the New Age and music community as a whole. Her partner is Tom Carleno the six-string bandit that populates their Latin World Fusion sound. There is a lot of music on the new release that will find its way to world, jazz, Latin and new age streaming stations.

I covered Rear View and enjoyed every minute of it. So, there is no reason why Dance of Two Souls would not be the same experience. And just so you know, it was also a very enjoyable experience that was as memorable as the last release.

The music on Dance of Two Souls will make your body move, your heart smile, and your soul feel as light as a feather. In other words, you will be swept away most pleasantly by this recording. Along the way, you hear jazz, Latin, and acoustic splendor unfolding all at once within each song.

Even though the music is acoustic (not electric with lots of noise pinning the VU meter) it does pack a potent amount of energy, color, sound, texture, and range of vibrations that you will recognize from beginning to end. It is a non-stop musical serendipity. 

Tracks like the world infused “Diabla” and the incredibly rhythmic and soulful “Where Does The Time Go” which is something I seem to say every day in this phase of my life. Just wait, it will happen to you too. The good news that Josie and Tom impart upon us is that time moves constantly, only our perception of it varies. And that is so true, it is relative to one’s own world.  This is the pièce de résistance of the entire album, its progressive, rapidly moving (there is that time thing again), with a lot of instrumentation going on. It is without a doubt my favorite track on the album, very cool. Now let’s remember that pièce de résistance refers to the chief dish of a meal or an outstanding item or event: showpiece. The entire recording serves as a showpiece two this two great talents coming together and “Where Does The Time Go” is their showpiece.

This is clearly the Dance of Two Souls in complete joy, and, we the listeners are the fortunate recipients of that absolute musical focus. Whether you want to glide around a room, tap your feet or just kick back and take it all in, this album is a superb way to allow yourself that space in time for a little of your own musical nirvana delivered courtesy of Josie Quick and Tom Carleno.

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck
June 12, 2019

Founder of:

Review Provided By New Age Music Reviews

Tracks:
01. Sunsplash
02. Diabla
03. The Happy Song
04. Déjà Vu
05. Dance of Two Souls
06. Troublant Boléro
07. Dos Gringos
08. Viaje del Corazón
09. Swinging Cats
10. Summertime
11. Where Does The Time Go?
12. Esmeralda
13. Por Causa de Você

 

6/08/2019

Instrumental Ambient Review: Jon Durant-Alternate Landscapes

Release Date: May 3, 2019
Label: Alchemy Records

My introduction to Jon Durant came in 2018 when he released Parting Is. His unique use of guitars I found to be very intriguing. 

Alternate Landscapes is along the same path but an expansion of what he was doing on the last release, this time with the use of synths. The music is ambient and electronic with Jon’s cloud guitar signature driving the compositions.

I made sure to include the track times because without that as an indicator people would assume that this was EP. That could not be further from the truth as the shortest track is 6:56 and the longest rolls in at 20:32.

After looking at the track titles I had to wonder what each one meant. The only one I recognized was “Aragon.” Have a little fun and look up all the track titles to see what they mean. I can tell you this, they are all destinations. Speaking of going somewhere, you are probably wondering where this music will take you. All this music has a destination as indicated by the track titles; however, I do believe that is up to each individual listener.  So, before you give this music a listen, stop, think, then decide how you will use this music as a tool to achieve your own destination.

I really cannot qualify this music as new age, perhaps a sub-genre thereof would be the best way to put it. It is atmospheric, dreamy, and billowy like a cloud. It pulls you out of one space and puts you in another rather quickly. At times it gave me the feeling of being submerged in water and thus that “floating” weightless feeling of mind, body, and soul. It can be a beautiful thing if you can let the music work its magic.

I would think that the folks that work in film making should take a good look at what Jon Durant can offer for soundtracks and effects for all sorts of films and documentaries. This music is Alternate Landscapes in a definitive sense, musically of course. Most listeners that enjoy ambient or new age will really appreciate this release.

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck
June 8, 2019

Founder of:

Review Provided By New Age Music Reviews

Tracks:
 
1. Systravatn 15:56
2. Aragon 6:56
3. Ciel Du Cheval 20:32
4. Dinkelsbül 15:11 



6/03/2019

Instrumental Piano Review: Milana Zilnik- Notte

Release Date: June 1, 2019
Label: Independent

According to the discography on Milana Zilnik’s website, on June 1, 2019, she will release her 13th album titled Notte (which means night in Italian). That is a very impressive library of recorded works. And the fact that I am not familiar with her work gives me pause to wonder why! Well, I am here to help those of you who are in a similar point in time I am and to take some time to listen to this music.

The artist decided, with the encouragement of her husband, to challenge herself and record a minimalist album. She is accustomed to making more complicated and colorful music. Do not be discouraged by that statement as what Milana has to say on the 12 tracks encompassing this ambitious effort is quite a lot. Not mention not uttering one word.

Stepping away from your comfort zone is difficult. It can be in any situation like work, or something that triggers those good endorphins. Music, really good music, should put you in your comfort zone. And why wouldn’t anyone want to do that? We can thank the artist for putting her best foot, or should I say fingers, forward on Notte.

Notte takes the listener through 12 hours of specific times, feelings and atmospheres. Each track intends to deliver a lapse of time and music to relate to the time (8 pm to 7 am) and title. The desire to see this to its completion was a success in every way. 

The minimalist approach is nothing new to these ears, especially when it comes to piano music. I hear a lot of it and I must say that I always enjoy it to the fullest extent. If it reaches out and touches my soul in some way it was a success from where I sit. For me personally, this has been an incredibly busy and at times very stressful time in the daily work setting. Having music like Notte to listen to is a very therapeutic exercise for me. The focus one can put on just the piano and the sounds emanating from it, can ease the mind which in turn slows the heartbeat, which then equates to a placidness that cannot be found during the course of a day, at least not for me. I am sure there are many people out there experiencing the same things on a daily basis. So, it is what you would call a healthy escape valve that I have access to any time I want it.

Notte is the right time to heal and regenerate our blood cells, minds, and attitudes for the following day. With the help of one very talented, not to mention brave, musician named Milana Zilnik, you to can attain a different state of mind and fulfillment.

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck
June 3, 2019

Founder of:

Review Provided By New Age Music Reviews

Tracks:
01. 8PM: Shadows
02. 9PM: Sunset
03. 10PM: Twilight
04. 11PM: Calmness
05. 12AM: Midnight
06. 1AM: Longing
07. 2AM: Echoes
08. 3AM: Silence
09. 4AM: Dreams
10. 5AM: Quietude
11. 6AM: Reflections
12. 7AM: Dawn


LINKS:




 



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