October 28, 2008 by Brianna
The guys from Emery are back today with their third album, the EP While Broken Hearts Prevail. “The Smile, The Face” and “Edge of the World” open the album and give you a feel for what to expect. While not far from The Weak’s End and The Question, their 2003 and 2005 releases, this EP definitely introduces some new elements for Emery. “The Smile, The Face” is full of minor keys and haunting harmonies with intense screaming and a Nirvana-like hallow chorus. “Edge of the World” starts off with the expected distorted guitar and screaming, but toward the middle of the song, breaks down first into almost a dance beat with the drums and then slows down into a snare beat coupled with quiet tenor vocals and more like yells than screaming. “Do the Things (You Want),” the closing song on the EP, is a completely new formula for Emery, beginning with electronic elements, leading into acoustic guitar coupled with deep melodic vocals, is almost like H.I.M. in a major key. Always the defeatists, they sing “Lets write the songs that we want. I thought they’d love us but they don’t.” I loved the emotion behind this song—it could move anyone listening to sympathize with them.
My favorite off this EP would have to be the last song, “Do the things (you want)”. This song with its dark acoustic feel, I believe tells the tale of doubt and a betrayal—a very relatable idea. I think that this EP is definitely worth listening to. If you listen and you like, more is hopefully to come with a full studio album in 2009.
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September 16, 2008 by Brianna
Every once in a while, a good band comes along and makes an amazing EP that no one really gets to listen to it because it’s not really out there. Anarbor’s new EP, The Natural Way is definitely one of those that could definitely skyrocket in popularity. With their catchy riffs in songs like “The Brightest Green” with the escalating scales during the chorus that I absolutely loved and their infectious vocals in songs like “Right there with you”, I definitely see this song being a top 10 single. I’ll have to admit songs like “Passion for publication” didn’t quite grab my attention, but it did convey a story of a person that begins to struggle with naivety and the truth that I appreciated. The first song off their EP is “Love Instead” which, at the beginning, sounded like a much more pop version of Hoobastank’s “Same Direction” but I was pleasantly surprised to hear that wasn’t the direction they were going in. The backing vocals added a depth to each verse and I liked the fact that it had a different electric sound compared to the arrangements that are in today’s music.
I can definitely see this EP going places. It has the perfect mix of pop vocals with alternative/pop punk instrumentation that makes people want to listen. It makes for a familiar sound, as if I’ve heard some aspects of it before, but I still loved it. The Natural Way is to go online and get their EP now!
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August 19, 2008 by Brianna
Karrigan’s My Conscience Got the Best of Me
Karrigan, one of the up and coming bands I got to hear at my first Warped Tour, have come out with their debut album, My Conscience Got the Best of Me, which brings an odd combination of familiar sounds and vocals that left me a little feeling unmoved and uninspired.
The beats on most of the songs were definitely something you can bob your head to. Still, I feel like this is something I’ve heard before. It’s almost like they mixed the angst ridden vocals of J.T. Woodruff from Hawthorne Heights and the pop beats of the likes of Jack’s mannequin and Something Corporate. Songs like “Love Triangles can be Fun but the Corners are so Sharp” are perfect examples of that familiarity I feel as I sat there listening to them. But, they do have one song that is a refreshing change of pace called “Summer Shadez”. I love the chorus because it is so freeing. You can close your eyes and see yourself hanging with friends.
In the end, I think that Karrigan’s familiarity mixed with their attempt at refreshing sounds leaves something to be desired. If you want to listen to something you can dance to, sure this is the album for you. But, if you want to hear something new, this isn’t it.
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August 5, 2008 by Brianna
The Mood’s Synaesthesia
Electronica/surfpop/pop never sounded so good! From the moment you start listening to The Mood’s new album Synaesthesia, you get this free flowing feeling in you and you just don’t have a care in the world. They were amazingly able to infuse different elements to make this album a diverse, multi-faceted cluster of hits that everyone can enjoy. They included some 60’s surfpop inspiration in songs like “Masquerade” in the chorus and it’s mellowed out guitar riffs. In the song “Outta your mind” I definitely sense an OK Go kind of pop influence from the moment the instrumentals kicked in.
My favorite song would have to be “Eskimo Scientist”. It sounds so sugary and sweet that it brings back memories of simpler times that I’m sure anyone would love to think of. If you want to have a fun, mellow time with friends pop in this CD and you’ll definitely have a blast.
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July 17, 2008 by Brianna
Jetset Trends EP by Say It Twice
With most of my favorite bands finishing up tours and going back to the studio there hasn’t been any new music to listen to really. So, in an effort to satiate my musical hunger, I set out on a long quest for fresh music and bands that I could listen to for a long time. It took me hours, but I found these guys called Say It Twice and I thought that I should bring attention to them and their music. They definitely brought a different sound to their Jetset Trends EP, which is available now on Smartpunk.com.
Their use of the synthesizers like in their new single, “Room on Fire”, was simply mesmerizing as you become so engulfed by the rhythm and start dancing almost automatically. Not only do their songs make you dance, but their amazing lyrical content that can tug on your heart strings. I loved the emotion that came out in their songs like “Always, Always” and one of my favorites off the album, “Your Way Home”. You can sense the conflict in the song and the sadness that grows in you as you listen on to this sad tale of letting someone go.
It’s easy to understand that with beats that are infectious and lyrics that people can connect with, Say It Twice is definitely a band to watch for. You can catch these guys on Warped Tour in August.
*photo of band from band’s myspace*
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June 18, 2008 by Brianna
We Sing, We Dance, We Steal Things by Jason Mraz
Jason Mraz brings in a hybrid of sounds for his third studio album “We Sing, We Dance, We Steal Things”. When listening to the album, eyes closed, some songs brought on images of sunny summer days spent at the beach, just lounging around with friends. Others evoked images of dark jazz clubs filled with smoke and low chatter around you while the musician is just playing on stage. Songs like “Make it mine” reminded me of the disco age with the funk flowing through the speakers and jazz inspired trumpets.
It wouldn’t be a Jason Mraz album if it didn’t have lyrics that were quirky, jam-worthy and relatable. All his songs embraced different messages that any person could identify with. Songs like “Details in the Fabric” and “Only Human” encourage imperfections and individuality. Something people don’t hear much anymore. My favorite songs off this album have to be “Lucky” featuring Colbie Caillat, “Details in the Fabric”, “If It Kills Me” and of course, the first single, “I’m Yours”.
Overall, Jason Mraz brought something different to this album. He brought a variety of sounds and a combination of touching ballads and fun summer-esque songs and turned it into a worthwhile listen. If you want a soundtrack for the summer, this is definitely one.
We buy. We listen. We like.
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June 7, 2008 by Brianna
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table but an enjoyable listen nonetheless. It had its high energy songs with rhythms that could make anyone want to dance. Songs like “I’m in love with a girl” which was the first single off the album, “Relative” and “Medicate the Kids” had infectious beats and a rhythm that could make anyone listening start bobbing their heads and grabbing for a brush. It had it heartbreak songs with their melancholic lyrics and saddening, soulful notes dripping from the stereo speakers.
The ballads like “Cheated on me” quickly became my favorite on the album along with “Next to me (wait a minute sister)”. As a counterbalance to the heartbreak , there are romance songs that are filled with whimsical spirit and wondrous emotions that could leave the most disillusioned heart thinking that there is a love so great out there, waiting for them. The song “We Belong Together” was where I found the mixture of romance and heartbreak and his voice that could make any girl swoon.I feel overall it had a nice sound and something that you could expect from an artist like Gavin DeGraw. However, its slight predictability does not take away at all from the quality of the album. I suggest that people go out and get it or download it; it will definitely be worth it.
Category Albums | Tags: Gavin DeGraw | 110 Comments
April 10, 2008 by Brianna
My First Honda Civic Tour
Yes! Just like the title suggests. Last Night was my very first Honda Civic Tour and let me tell you, I absolutely loved it! The music was great, the performance was fantastic and the energy was amazing.
First up was Phantom Planet. From the moment they hit the stage, they brought on a blast of energy and really rocked it out. Their set had me bouncing up and down and bobbing my head the entire time. Most of the songs they played were off their new album Raise the Dead including their new singles “Do the Panic” and “Dropped,” which were awesome. They even went out there and pulled a “summoning” move for all the World of Warcraft fans at the concert (my sister and I met some of the guys and she is really into WoW. She told them that she was a level 30 mage…they thought that was awesome :D). They ended their set with, of course, “California” (which got the ENTIRE crowd singing along).
The Hush Sound then took to the stage busting out with one of their songs from their new album, Goodbye Blues. As they belted out an energetic rendition of “Medicine Man” everyone sang along. I had never seen them live before so just seeing them there and SO CLOSE was just amazing. As I listened to them perform, I was amazed to realize they sound like they do on their CDs. (I know it’s weird, but I think it’s rare to actually see it or hear it happen.) Their set had a little bit for everyone. They performed soulful slow songs like “Hurricane” and more energetic and spirited songs like “We Intertwined” and “Honey”. They ended their set with an enthusiastic roar from the crowd.
Motion City Soundtrack was up next and the closer we got to the headliners, the louder the rumbles throughout the venue became. They came on and I have to say that they are seriously entertaining. They cracked jokes in between songs – I thought that was really cool. They performed songs from their recent release Even if It Kills Me (2007) and their older albums as well. I am a fairly new fan of Motion City Soundtrack and am still learning more about them. They got the crowd singing along when they sang “The Future freaks me out”, “Let’s Get Fucked Up and Die”, and of course their most popular, “Everything is Alright”. They got the crowd pumped up and ready to rock by the time they ended their set. Motion City Soundtrack then turned up on the third floor to take pictures and sign autographs like The Hush Sound did, but the line went all the way down to the second floor and I wasn’t about to lose my spot in the pit. I wanted so badly to see them and do that stuff, but positive thinking and saying to myself “there’s always next time” convinced me to stay put.
Finally, it was the moment we had all been waiting for…Panic at the Disco was about to take the stage. The band hadn’t even come out yet and the crowd was already going crazy! I have to admit, I was part of the crowd cheering and chanting “Panic” thinking that would get them on stage fasterJ . When they finally approached the stage, the entire venue was screaming and just…it was pandemonium. They greeted the crowd and began singing “We’re So Starving” followed by “Nine in the Afternoon”, everyone singing along the entire time. I sang even louder when they began playing my absolute favorite song—the moment the beat for “Lying is the most fun a girl can have…” began to flood the speakers, I completely let loose and started going crazy. Why would one admit this you ask? I don’t quite know…the simple answer is to show you how into the music I was. At one point though, I did feel like it was dragging a bit. I guess it was just the lack of explosive bass and pounding rhythm. The final song was fittingly, “Northern Downpour” which I thought was nicely performed. They then got off the stage. I didn’t stick around for the encore so I can’t tell you about that.
All in all, I enjoyed the sets, the music and the general mood of it all. The best part was that I was helping the environment (eco-friendly centered concert). Although there were certain parts that were a little dragging, if you like any of these bands I suggest you go. You’ll have a blast.
*all photos taken from respective artists’ myspace pages
Category Albums | Tags: Motion City Soundtrack,Panic at the Disco,Phantom Planet,The Hush Sound | No Comments