Monday, 5 November 2012

Walk Off The Earth R.E.V.O.

Words can't describe how AWESOME this EP is, let alone how absolutely AMAZING Walk Off The Earth is. 
When I first heard of WOTE, I had only seen that one video. You know which one i'm talking about. 

But then, I started listening to all of their other releases, and couldn't get over their pure talent. I was lucky enough to see them at the sound of music festival this year, and again at the Danforth Music Hall in Toronto. 

This new EP, R.E.V.O., which stands for Realize Every Victory Outright, is such a powerful collection of 4 new songs, just enough to get us pumped for their 3rd full length release expected to drop february 2013.

Each of the songs on the EP are unique, but all have that same sound that makes WOTE who they are. The powerful combination of 4 harmonies and heavy percussion is so refreshing, and is not heard very often nowadays. It's really hard to recommend a song to listen to, because they're all so good! you've gotta listen to all of them. personally, my favourite song from the EP is "Gang of Rhythm". it's got such a good vibe to it and I love the message.

Definitely buy this EP. It's worth your 3 bucks!

Sarah Blackwood and me :)

Friday, 9 March 2012

Ritchie 60

He is a huge pop star in Brazil. And he is English! The songs that made him famous are all in Portuguese, a language he speaks flawlessly.  His name is Ritchie and I want to tell you a bit about him.
As you all know, I too have a love affair with Brazil.  My mom is Brazilian and I can see myself living there at one point of my life. I think it's a DNA thing, something you cannot explain.  But this feeling of belonging, made Ritchie stay and re-invent himself.  This all happened in the 70s.  And in the early 80s, Ritchie achieved stardom, selling hundreds of thousands of albums, his tunes playing everywhere.

"Menina Veneno" is a great song.  One of his first hits too!

Watch him cover "Mercy Street":

Ritchie just celebrated his 60th birthday and also released a new album Ritchie 60.  Unlike his other albums, he actually sings in English and it's a cover cd.  He brilliantly chose great songs, all from the 60s.

When I first listened to this cd, I was amazed by the great choice of songs.  And his interpretation is sometimes better that the original.  So, even if you don't know who Ritchie is, you should follow my advice and check him out here.  I think my favorite cover is Wichita Lineman by Glen Campbell. I hope Ritchie posts a video soon.

Listen to "Don't let the sun catch you crying":

Didn't I tell you he was awesome?

Monday, 13 February 2012

Long live Rock n Roll!

Going to start by saying that this was the best speech I heard in a very long time:

"This is a great honour, because this record was a special record for our band. Rather than go to the best studio in the world down the street in Hollywood and rather than use all of the fanciest computers that money can buy, we made this one in my garage with some microphones and a tape machine...
"To me this award means a lot because it shows that the human element of music is what's important. Singing into a microphone and learning to play an instrument and learning to do your craft, that's the most important thing for people to do.
"It's not about being perfect, it's not about sounding absolutely correct, it's not about what goes on in a computer. It's about what goes on in here [your heart] and what goes on in here [your head]."

Dave Grohl delivered it last night at the Grammy's, after the Foo Fighters deservedly won Best Rock Album. 
I couldn't agree more with his words. The music industry has to start paying more attention to what true art really is. Spend less money designing puppet performers, disrespecting true talent and diminishing the real deal musicians out there.  It's cool to wear freaky clothes and weird make-up if behind it all, there's a brain capable of writing and performing brilliant tunes. And don't get me started on auto-tune...
I want to believe we, as an audience, deserve a bit more respect. And having said so, I hope that I, the musician, do treat you with the respect you have earned.  
It's not cool to be played along...

Saturday, 31 December 2011

And the 10 best albums of 2011 are...

10 -Blink- 182 -  Neighborhoods
9 - Memphis - Here Comes a City

8 - Foo Fighters - Wasting Light

7 - The Strokes - Angles

6 - Dan Mangan - Oh Fortune

5 - AWOLNATION - Megalithic Symphony

4 - Adele - 21

3 - City and Colour - Little Hell

2 - Florence + the Machine - Ceremonials

1 - Foster the People - Torches

Monday, 14 November 2011

Ceremonials - Florence is elegant!

This record has a great vibe to it. The songs are a mixture of Lungs and something that we haven’t heard yet. My favourite song on this record is What the Water Gave Me:

Ceremonials is definitely up to par with Lungs and I am excited to see what she’ll do on her next album. I just love her voice, I can't get enough of it. This is one of those records that you can’t get tired of listening to. The songs own grandiosity. You can simply say they are big. And if you're familiar with Florence, you know this is something she does magnificently well. I love how she uses lots of harp in her tunes, something of a trademark, a recognizable feature that totally works. I think that is why she is so unique. Florence is elegant!  Definitely buy this album! I did :)

Monday, 7 November 2011

V is the real deal!

I mentioned them before. 5th Projekt is probably Toronto's best kept secret. If you like depth in music, then you MUST listen to this band. They are, no doubt, the true definition of flawless.

Their new album V is a fantastic collection of tunes. It's a radical break from their former projects and you can taste the heavy edge they were hiding up until now. Each song presents a new energy and combined they are absolutely epic. This is an album you must listen to from beginning to the end. Then again and again. And each time you will discover something else hidden between the notes.
And when you think you have it all figured out, Tara surprises with an amazing interpretation of the classic White Rabbit. It's seriously too awesome to put in words, so I suggest you go and have a listen.

I saw them live in Guelph in August. Tara had a cold, but you honestly couldn't tell. Her voice was as amazing as usual and they had everyone stunned with their super professional performance.Here's a clip I recorded:

Friday, 16 September 2011

Foster the People - Get Addicted!

 It's no secret I love this band. I mentioned them a while ago and was totally looking forward to their new album TORCHES. I honestly can't get enough of it. These guys redefined the concept of greatness. They are absolutelly brilliant! So here's my take on their new release.

Helena Beat
This song has been playing CONSTANTLY on the radio. It’s solid, definitely. I love the chord progression. It really brings the song together, and there’s a little lead part in the verses that you might not have noticed, but it also completes the verse. The chorus is simply amazing, and still follows the main chord progression, but then comes the bridge. It breaks down to a simple drum, bass and synth part. The song continues to the chorus again, and makes the song even better by repeating the lick that goes ‘wooooooo, woooo’ you know what I mean. Awesome.

Pumped Up Kicks
The acclaimed best song in the album, not in my opinion, but one of the best. Definitely pumps me up in the morning! I’ve heard this song enough that I can tell you that I sing the chorus VERY loud in the car. The verses are for listening only, because the production in them is just astounding. It makes me wonder how long it took to put this song together because there are just so many different layers of sound. The solo is cool because I’m pretty sure it was all sung into a microphone with a cool effect over it. With mainly the same structure as Helena Beat, it attaches the two songs into one. I love it.

Call It What You Want
The intro is so unique and the progression is just so simple but fascinating at the same time. Vocals start with the song title, call it what you want. For the first time on the album, we get to hear Mark’s voice without an effect. The raw quality of Foster the People. This song has a funkier quality than the electronic Helena Beat and Pumped Up Kicks. Here, you get to here Mark’s ear-pleasing piano skills. Once again with a cool vocal lick, it differs from the strong electronic characteristic of Foster the People. I simply love how they can add raw piano to synths and electric drums. It’s amazing.

Don’t Stop (Color on the Walls)
Here, we hear the acoustic guitar. This song differs from all the other songs on the album, with acoustic drums, and not too many synths in the beginning. We just hear synths mainly following the vocal progression and doing lead things. This brings us back to the beginning, to the guitar, bass, drums and vocals, 3 man band typical. It actually reminds me of a Queens of the Stone Age-type thing. The bridge is AMAZING. One word, and that’s all you need to know. You’ll get it once you hear the song for yourself, if you haven’t already heard it. It just makes me happy!

Another one I’ve heard a lot, completely opposite from track 4. I like how they put the album together, some similar, some contrasting. Anyway, I like the lyrics in the chorus, saying mainly that you shouldn’t be wasting time doing other things, and you should just go hang out with Mark Foster. I like that. It really makes you think that you should get out and seize the day, not just waste it away. (Hey! That rhymes!) The bridge makes a huge statement with the chords, makes you complete your thoughts, but then brings them back with another chorus. It ends that way, and it should.

I Would Do Anything for You

Now THIS is my favourite song on the album. The chorus really makes the song with the ‘ooh la la’ part, and more of Mark’s epic piano skills. The verses are amazing but the choruses are amazing-er (Is that a word? Now it is.) They continue the song with the bridge, but the bridge continues with some very eerie chord changes for such a happy song. They go back to the chorus, and I continue to be speechless, and overwhelmed with happiness. Listen to this one. It will complete you.

I’ve heard this one. A lot. So much that I love it even more now. It’s not a song that will make you bored after 5 times in a row. The synth lick in the choruses completes the song, without even hearing the song completely. It’s already stuck an A++. Seriously, this song should be huger than it is, grabbing an audience from kids to adults, and anything in between. Mark shows his amazing voice in this song. I love the group harmonies in this song, because it depicts their teamwork and friendship. That’s cool.

Life on the Nickel
This song has so many layers it’s hard to describe. It sounds like they had fun recording this song. You don’t find out until later that the chorus is basically the intro all over again. The verse is really cool, and actually reminds me of Florence + the Machine’s ‘Drumming Song.’ The bridge reminds me of playing a arcade video game, because of the synths they chose to use during this song. It’s amazing what you can do these days.

Miss You
This song reminds me of LMFAO’s ‘Party Rock Anthem’ because of the drum beats and synths in the chorus. You’ll find out later. The part after the verse breaks down, and into Party Rock they go. They obviously Foster it up a bit, but that makes it the whole bunch better. They pretty much go over the verse, breakdown, chorus thing again, but this time the breakdown is longer. They then build up into the chorus. You would think that this song would communicate to a large audience like I said with Houdini, but Houdini fits the bill. I love how the song ends, just like that. Just like that.

The last song on the album. Not if you got it on iTunes or at Best Buy! But I’m just reviewing the CD. So :(    This song has the best beat out of all 10 songs. It concludes the whole album, and would be an amazing show-ender, calming the audience down, before they realize that the concert is over. It’s a sad song, but the chorus makes it happy, even though the lyrics are still a bit depressing. The synth lick in this song is really cool. It follows the bass in the verses, but adds on to it. The verses almost make me want to cry because I know that the album is already over. They should’ve made a double record or something. Darn! Then comes Mark with the megaphone, and kills everybody listening to the song with his amazing skills. What you don’t know when you’re listening to the song, is that it’s actually 5 minutes long. But, they go buy so fast when you’re listening to the song, that they’re gone in a heartbeat.

 Overall this gets a rating of 6 out of 5. I’m being completely honest, and please take my word for it and buy this record, if you don’t already have it. The singles you hear on the radio are just a little glimpse of their talents. I bought the album on iTunes, where you receive one bonus track, but I’m heading down to Best Buy to get the other two. Get addicted!