29 March 2017

The Turtles/Zappa & The Mothers Legend Jim Pons Pens New Book "Hard Core Love: Sex, Football, and Rock and Roll in the Kingdom of God"


From the Sunset Strip to the White House and stadiums throughout the NFL, Jim Pons' journey through rock and roll to filming professional football becomes a one-of-a kind spiritual autobiography. “Hard Core Love” connects the dots behind the scenes of Jim's years with The Turtles, Frank Zappa and The New York Jets, all of which lead to his finest achievement, a long-sought peace with God.

Says Jim, “People I have worked with, played with and lived with always told me I should write a book someday and I always thought it would be entertaining to people. It was Neale Donald Walsch who convinced me. He told me it would be helpful to people.”


Jim Pons is a former bass guitarist and singer for several legendary 1960's and 70's rock bands, including The Leaves, The Turtles, Frank Zappa & The Mothers and Flo & Eddie.

In 1973 Pons left the music industry to become the film and video director for the New York Jets football club. He held this position until his retirement in 2000. Pons and his family moved to Jacksonville, Florida in 2005, where he did game day video for the Jacksonville Jaguars for three more years before finally leaving the NFL. He now sings and plays upright bass in a bluegrass band called Lonesome Ride.

“If you’ve been taught to believe that fame and fortune are the keys to happiness—and most of us have—Jim Pons’ remarkable story is for you. If you’ve been taught that your questions about the meaning of life should be left in the hands of religious experts—and most of us have—Jim’s personal quest to know God offers the gift of spiritual freedom. His transparency shines throughout and cannot help but assist other seekers—covertly, even those who buy the book for the football and rock n’ roll. Having known his story for several years, it has been our sincere desire that Jim share it with the world. Thankfully that time has come. We invite you to open these pages, enjoy his story and come away the better for sharing his experience.” - Lee and Steven Hager, authors of The Gospel of Thomas: Where Science Meets Spirituality

In closing Jim has this to impart, “There is more to life than fame and fortune. We haven’t learned all there is to know about God.”

To purchase:
https://www.amazon.com/Hard-Core-Love-Football-Kingdom/dp/1945390484

For more information:
www.jimpons.com
www.facebook.com/wjpons

Press inquiries: Glass Onyon PR, PH: 828-350-8158, glassonyonpr@gmail.com

New Age-Classical Review: Nancy Shoop-Wu-Rainbow Road

Release Date: January 13, 2017
Label: Nancy Shoop-Wu, Lei Hoku
Nancy Shoop-Wu shows you the way to Rainbow Road, the title of her most recent recording. If you follow the road that leads to the rainbow you will discover a wealth of beautiful music.

Nancy takes her violin and turns it into a magic wand with a combination of new age and classical instrumental tracks (except for track 8). She calls Hawaii her home, the island of rainbows. Her inspiration is derived from her home and the driving force is the memory of her father, whom she lost at the young age of 12. There is nothing like a deep enduring love to give you the courage and energy to strive forward regardless of any road blocks.

On Rainbow Road Nancy creates a masterstroke of violin music accompanied by some well-placed piano parts and other instruments. The other instruments are the desserts after the full course meal. Her playing is graceful and moving as it could possibly be for a violin taking the lead on a song. 

Every track is like a rainbow of colors and as picturesque as the island she lives on. This is “make you feel good all over music.” Although this is primarily an instrumental recording Nancy exercises her voice on “Carry Me Home.” I must say that her vocals are as gorgeous as her violin playing. The title of the song and the words are a strong statement from a voice that cannot be ignored and the same can be said for the music itself. 

New age and classical are not strange bedfellows they are intrinsically linked, taking the same foundation to build a tower of sound and delight for any one that appreciates music. Additionally, music that is spiritual in nature and relaxes and soothes the soul is something everyone needs every day, whether they realize it or not. It has helped me for years; it makes me appreciative of the arts and all the joy they bring to us all. Music is a gift from the heavens I have no doubt and Nancy Shoop-Wu is one of the angels that is delivering it on Rainbow Road. She is “Lele Noa” (English translation is Flying Free) on this excellent recording!

5/5 Stars

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck
March 29, 2017
Founder of:

Review Provided By New Age Music Reviews

Tracks:

01. Rainbow Road
02. Pulelehua (Mountain Butterfly)
03. Lei Hoku (Star of Love)
04. Sunrise over Haleiwa
05. Always in My Heart
06. Lullaby
07. Waimanalo
08. Carry Me Home
09. Beautiful Mana'o
10. In Your Eyes
11. Ma'noa Rain
12. Lele Noa (Flying Free)


26 March 2017

Instrumental Meditation Review: Anaamaly-Urban Metta Vol. 1

Release Date: April 21, 2017
Label: RS Promotions/Heart Dance Records

Phil Strickland is a Phoenix-based recording artist who records under the pseudonym, Anaamaly.  In the video provided the artist introduces his new album Urban Metta Vol. 1. He came from a different genre as indicated by the title however what he does is take all of his knowledge and influences from a different world and creates another.

His desire to make music that was beautiful and a backdrop to his wife’s yoga classes became a reality once Urban Metta Vol. 1 was completed.

I was watching a documentary on musical artist Sheryl Crow and she said that music changes the molecules in your body. I believe this to be true, otherwise how else could you explain the waves of good feelings and emotions a person can have when music is played? It also can change your brain waves, and most certainly the music of Anaamaly does that. Another point of interest is the fact that you do not have to be familiar with the sounds to have a reaction. It works that way for me, particularly with any kind of instrumental music created to connect you to a higher level of consciousness. In addition, it surely can bring you there if you are in an unbalanced state of being.

I do not think there are a lot of us on this plane of existence walking around on higher level of consciousness. There is too much noise and interference to allow that to happen on a large scale. If I ever figure out a way to change that I will be sure to share it readily with my brothers and sisters that enjoy this kind of music. Something prolific must happen on a global scale spiritually for things to change. Music can help or literally lead the cause.

Urban Metta Vol. 1 is recorded by what you would call a non-traditional musician and Anaamaly is the first person to tell you that in the provided video. He comes from a world that is high tech, utilizing beats and electronic sounds that are computer generated. This is very common however for one person to take many sounds created in a digital world and to make it all a work of art is another mountain to climb. This process takes a lot of talent and artistry and cannot be underestimated.

I appreciate the value and presentation of this recording. All the mystical sounds and whirling and whooshing of the synths that take you away, it is like being swept off the ground and floating away on a cloud of relaxation. There is simplicity in the purpose yet the music is a complex combination of emotions and textures packaged into one bundle for you to unfold and absorb.

Every listener has a different vibration and aura thus the music will take on colors that only that individual can see and feel. That is the beauty and gift of instrumental music meant for meditation or for the background for a yoga class.  When a group of people must concentrate, and go inward to attain a level of the spirit to achieve a physical and mental balance that yoga requires, music can be a great tool.

Regardless of what you want to do with the music it does offer a healing process that is either conscious or on a subconscious level and for this listener that is wonderful thing.

4/5 Stars

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck
March 26, 2017
Founder of:

Review Provided By New Age Music Reviews

Tracks:


01. I Stand in My Own Power
02. I Walk Through the Fire
03. I Live in the Current Moment
04. I Embrace All Wisdom
05. I Love Unconditionally
06. I Am Grateful For...
07. I Am Lighthearted
08. I Am Perfect Either Way
09. I Am Awakened
10. I Am Surrounded by Abundance
11. I Am Healed on All Levels



24 March 2017

The Doors Guitar Legend Robby Krieger To Play Select US Dates


The Doors guitar legend Robby Krieger will be playing select US dates beginning in April! A Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee (with The Doors), Krieger wrote or co-wrote many of the Doors' songs, including the hits “Light My Fire”, “Love Me Two Times”, “Touch Me”, and “Love Her Madly”. After the Doors disbanded, Krieger continued his performing and recording career with other musicians including former Doors band mates John Densmore and Ray Manzarek. Robby is listed by Rolling Stone as one of the greatest guitarists of all time!

Tour dates:

April 7, 2017 - Pasadena, CA - The Rose
April 8, 2017 - Ojai, CA - Ojai Libbey Bowl
April 16, 2017 - New York, NY - City Winery New York
April 19, 2017 - Shirley, MA - Bull Run
April 21, 2017 - Greensburg, PA - Palace Theatre
April 22, 2017 - Newton, NJ - Newton Theatre
April 23, 2017 - Ardmore, PA - Ardmore Music Hall
May 5, 2017 - Grand Rapids, MI - 20 Monroe Live
May 6, 2017 - Detroit, MI - The Filmore Detroit
May 7, 2017 - Indianapolis, IN - Egyptian Room at Old National Centre
May 27, 2017 - Simi Valley, CA - Rancho Santa Susana Community

Robert Alan Krieger, born January 8, 1946, in Los Angeles, is a musical performer and The Doors guitarist. He attended UCLA. “The first music I heard that I liked was Peter and the Wolf. I accidentally sat and broke the record (I was about seven). Then I listened to rock ‘n’ roll – I listened to the radio a lot – Fats Domino, Elvis, The Platters.

“There was lots of classical music in my house. My father liked march music. There was a piano at home. I studied trumpet at ten, but nothing came of it. Then I started playing blues on the piano? no lessons though. When I was fifteen, I started playing guitar. I used my friend’s guitar. I didn’t get my own until I was sixteen. It was a Mexican flamenco guitar. I took flamenco lessons for a few months. I switched around from folk to flamenco to blues to rock ‘n’ roll.

“Records got me into the blues. Some of the newer rock ‘n’ roll, such as the Paul Butterfield Blues Band. If it hadn’t been for Butterfield going electric, I probably wouldn’t have gone rock ‘n’ roll.

I didn’t plan on rock ‘n’ roll. I wanted to learn jazz; I got to know some people doing rock ‘n’ roll with jazz, and I thought I could make money playing music. In rock ‘n’ roll you can realize anything that you can in jazz or anything. There’s no limitation other than the beat. You have more freedom than you do in anything except jazz.

“In The Doors we have both musicians and poets, and both know of each other’s art, so we can effect a synthesis. In the case of Tim Buckley or Dylan you have one man’s ideas. Most groups today aren’t groups. In a true group all the members create the arrangements among themselves.”

For more info: http://robbykrieger.com/

Robby Krieger - In Session:
Buy the CD here:
https://cleorecs.com/store/shop/robby-krieger-in-sessions-cd/
Buy the digital version here:
https://geo.itunes.apple.com/us/album/in-session/id1194804130?app=itunes&at=1000lt9k

Press inquiries: Glass Onyon PR, PH: 828-350-8158, glassonyonpr@gmail.com

(photo by Jill Jarrett)

22 March 2017

Instrumental Rock Review: Bradford-You're Doing It Wrong

Release Date: July 1, 2016
Label: CD Baby

Bradford (Bradford Watson) released his second album titled You’re Doing It Wrong last summer. After listening I wish I had heard it when it came out! It’s never too late for great music, especially guitar based rock!

Brad is an Aerospace professional that got tired of the daily pressures of corporate America and decided to build his own studio. He is now a full-fledged indie musician, the total opposite of his day job. Now he has a great release valve at the end of each workday to go home to. I totally get that situation believe me.

Brad wanted to make an album that sang without the singing. That is the most wonderful thing about instrumental music, it does just that if it is good enough. I am here to tell you that this music passed my tests. I am picky and very particular when it comes to my music and there is high bar set prior to any listening experience.

If you like to rock, then you have some favorite guitar heroes, right? Let me put it like this, if you like Vai or Satriani you will love this Bradford album. As I was cruising along in music heaven, track six kicked in. ‘Flux” is a beast! The way it begins and builds to some of the heaviest Metallica (and ironically he looks like James Hetfield!) like riffs and proceeds to blow you away with nothing but volume and muscle. I loved it, period. Then like flipping a switch, the scenery travels miles away from the head banging fun. Suddenly the short outing of “Mom’s Place” comes on with its twangy notes. Short and sweet, the acoustic and electric guitar paints a different kind of picture that makes you feel like another person stepped in to take over the strings. Then the juggernaut starts all over again, kicking it into another six-string dimension with “Run Away.” 

From that point it never stops, there is no rest for the wicked. The music continues to roll along with unrelenting straight ahead rock albeit some different flavors and angles to keep it interesting.

You’re Doing It Wrong was two years in the making. Now keep in mind full time musicians take that long to create an album, this man did it while working a full-time job. This is a strong musical statement and Brad should be encouraged to carry on and explore his many talents.

He did it all himself which is a wonder but very possible with today’s technologies. The caveat here is you better know what you’re doing and have the chops to back it up. I can attest to the fact what a difficult process it is making an album, especially on your own, as I served as an Associate Producer for an artist that did something similar. Bradford proves that he is major league guitar player.

I don’t know who is doing it wrong here, certainly not Bradford! This is a killer instrumental rock album and I highly recommend checking out the guitar that has its own distinctive voice ala any vocals to help it along. This ride is owned and operated by Brad Wilson and one destination you will feel compelled to arrive at more than once, trust me.

4.5/5 Stars

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck
March 22, 2017
Founder of:

Review Provided By Write A Music Review

Tracks:
01. You're Doing It Wrong
02. Suddenly
03. Pushed
04. One Step
05. The Longer Road
06. In Flux
07. Mom's Place
08. Run Away
09. State of Mind
10. Another Door
11. The Precipice
12. Crossing Over
 

20 March 2017

Experimental Music Ensemble Zero Times Everything To Release New Album "Sonic Cinema" - April 21, 2017


NYC - Experimental music ensemble Zero Times Everything will be releasing their eagerly anticipated new album “Sonic Cinema” on April 21, 2017! Avant-garde post-industrial pre-cambrian pan-ethnic serial noise proto-punk neocortex music. It lives at the intersection of “My Life in the Bush of Ghosts” and Autechre, mixing glitchcore, ambient, and progressive rock.

Says band member Richard Sylvarnes, “In film making it is critical to create a sense of space; a world wholly imaginary that we can enter completely and without reservation. That is the first critical step in the creative process of Zero Times Everything. We strive to create worlds with sounds for a film that is either real or imagined. Hence the title: 'Sonic Cinema'. Although largely an instrumental recording there are passages of spoken texts; either through a disembodied heroine’s chant from a 1930’s gangster film, robot voices reciting Marxist texts, a child’s recitation of 'Twenty-first Century Schizoid Man', to a chorus of angry protesters whose calls against war resemble a liturgical chant. The totality of these texts describe a malignant world within the throes of a breathless apocalypse. And, yet, the record ends on a celestial note - a treated, improvised guitar loop - that inspires hope and resilience within the storm.”

Zero Times Everything is:
Richard Sylvarnes – Kaoss Pads, Loops, Synths, Rhythms, Guitars, Vocals
Pietro Russino – Guitars, Loops, Violin
Tony Geballe – Guitars, Synths, Loops
(with special guest Sønje Sylvarnes, vocals on Schizoid)

Tony, Richard, and Pietro first met at Robert Fripp's Guitar Craft Seminars at Claymont Court, then formed a group to provide live music for Richard Sylvarnes' epic film “The Last Words of Dutch Schultz”. ZXE continued playing live to Richard's works, developing a rich vocabulary of music and exploration far beyond their original intention. “Sonic Cinema” is the result – music to accompany films: the ones made by Richard Sylvarnes and the ones playing in your head. The music of ZXE is improvised over a framework of known landmarks and ideas.

Once they made their debut with “Dutch Schultz”, ZXE was asked to play at the inaugural NY Festival of Light in 2013, and then to perform at the opening ceremony of the 2014 NYFOL. Working with Howard Ungerleider, longtime lighting designer for Rush, ZXE presented an audiovisual extravaganza with a spectacular light show under the Manhattan Bridge. ZXE has also performed at the Filmmakers Co-op Benefit with Laurie Anderson, John Zorn, Philip Glass, and JG Thirlwell. In 2015, ZXE provided the musical soundtrack for “Valkyrie Octopus” by the celebrated Portuguese artist Joana Vasconcelos, at the MGM Grand Casino in Macau, China.

Says Richard, “ 'Sonic Cinema' was recorded over the past several years. Our first live performances were in art galleries, avant-garde cinemas, and performances spaces in New York City. The music grew from these performances, and in the studio.

“All the music was recorded in a small studio in a heavily industrialized, dirty, noisy section of Brooklyn. The studio sits underneath a bridge that separates Queens from Brooklyn and is presently being taken apart and rebuilt at the same time. The studio is also surrounded by metal refuse companies that day and night haul heaps of metal and junk from torn down buildings into dingy, contaminated yards. Amidst this cacophony the record was made, which certainly lent to the overall feeling of the music.

“We followed the music and listened for where it was going. This was the guiding principle to recording the CD. An idea, or the germ of an idea, would be presented to the band and from that would emerge possible directions fueled by each musician's passion, panic, and/or response to what they were hearing. Sometimes this can be comparable to walking on a high-tension line where success and failure are both one step away. A particular example would be the piece ‘Accident,’ where all that was presented was a dark, looped techno drum beat, and a single spoken phrase of a woman calling the police. No chordal arrangements or charts were given. No fixed goals in mind. From that small idea developed a forty-five minute musical exploration that was edited into its final eleven minutes of whose mood, quality, and intensity no one could have predicted, which then was further processed and distorted in the mixing phase. We record all of our rehearsals and treat those recordings as malleable material to create worlds both serene and disquieting.”

The Band:

Richard Sylvarnes is an artist and composer. Richard's works have been exhibited internationally in galleries and museums and published in such media as the New York Times and Rolling Stone. A long-time member of ASCAP and the Filmmakers Co-op, his films have been shown in Greece, Germany, England, Brazil, Russia, France and various countries in Asia, as well as twice being featured in the Tribeca Film Festival. Richard’s music has been released on 4 CDs with Sylvarluxe and the Underworld Oscillator Corporation on the Skrymir label.

Pietro Russino is a Sardinia-born guitarist, multi-instrumentalist, and composer who combines rock traditions with classical finger picking, his own blend of improvised Mediterranean folk melodies, and looping. Pietro's music has been featured on MTV and on John Shaefer's WNYC show “New Sounds,” and on RAI Television in Italy. He was music director of Da Ugo, a music venue-restaurant-bar located on the beach of Porto Taverna, Sardinia. Pietro created the genre of “Hypnofolk,” and released a CD by that name in 2011.

Tony Geballe is a guitarist, composer, and sound designer, member of the La Compagnia de' Colombari theater group and the progressive darkwave band Braindance. His works have been performed at the Huntington Theater in Boston, Classic Stage Company (NYC), New York Theater Workshop, the Hartford Stage and many other venues in the USA and internationally. Tony was also a member of The Trey Gunn Band, and his CD “Native of the Rain” was released by Robert Fripp's label Discipline Global Mobile.

Zero Times Everything is currently recording its follow up release (working title: “Sound of Music”) and embarking on several shows in the New York Metropolitan area including a record release party in late April. The group continues to make films for their music and intend to work with other visual artists in a live atmosphere, especially the multi-visual group called “Optipus”. They continue to make the band's live shows a visual as well as sonic experience.

In closing Richard has this to impart about Zero Times Everything's forthcoming album, “ 'Sonic Cinema' is challenging; at times discordant, unmoored with a feral energy, and descriptive of bleak, desolate landscapes. At the very same time 'Sonic Cinema' is lush, expansive, and vivid; an exploration of all that is luminous in this world.”

To purchase Zero Times Everything's “Sonic Cinema” CD: 
https://zerotimeseverything.bandcamp.com/album/sonic-cinema
http://music.7dmedia.com

For more information:
Official website: http://zerotimeseverything.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/zerotimeseverything

Press inquiries: Glass Onyon PR, PH: 828-350-8158, glassonyonpr@gmail.com

16 March 2017

New Age/World Review: Darlene Koldenhoven-Color Me Home

Release Date: April 21, 2017
Label: TimeArt Recordings

The list of credits for Darlene Koldenhoven on her upcoming release Color Me Home is mind boggling. She is credited with Producer, vocalist, pianist, composer, lyricist, vocal and instrumental arranger, keyboardist and solos, programmer and engineer, Native drums & shaker, album notes and a coloring book.

Yes, that is not a typo, a coloring book. A very interesting and fact filled booklet comes with the CD and many pictures that can be colored in. This package is quite unique. I have seen a lot things over my 19 years of reviewing music but this is something special and a pleasant surprise. The pictures in the book are very intricate and personally I would not attempt to color them in fear of ruining their beauty. I am sure there are people out there that will feel entirely different.

I understand there are adult coloring books now selling like hotcakes now because people use it as an exercise in relaxation. So, you take that and add the music of Ms. Koldenhoven and you have a potent combination of serenity and spirituality all in one package. The artist grew up encouraged in an environment to color while listening to music. So, everyone that purchases this CD has an opportunity to color Darlene home, hence the inviting title.

I must say that I thought there was not much uniqueness left in the music industry but this recording and packaging puts that thought to rest.
Along with all the talents that Darlene brings to the table she had 16 guest artists along for the journey. I will not go through the roll call in case I forget someone so I will leave it to you readers to do your research if you feel compelled to do so. Let’s just say the people involved are prominent musicians in the new age community.

Darlene’s voice is that of an angel and it is operatic at some points. Her range is phenomenal. And the music? It is incredibly beautiful … filled with textures, colors and all sorts of atmospheres that make your mind wander into dreamland. The combination of vocals and instrumentation is superbly placed within each track. It takes true artistry and natural talent to create such a diversified recording and so many worldly new age flavors. I particularly appreciated the native drums and sounds that made me feel one with humanity and mother earth. It always has that effect on me and it feels warm and real. Who wouldn’t want to listen to music that makes you feel that way?

I can say with certainty so early in the year, that Color Me Home should be up for a Grammy. With all things considered and the work and craft that went into this music, I certainly think it deserves all the consideration for awards of recognition. You be the judge and let me know what you think after you stream the player and watch the video provided for your preview.

5/5 Stars

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck
March 16, 2017
Founder of:

Review Provided By New Age Music Reviews

Tracks:

01. First Light
02. The Pleasure of the Mourning Dove
03. Kalahari Calls
04. Song of the Swans
05. Eternal Love's Song
06. Indian Summer
07. Embracing This Moment
08. Ode to Our Orb
09. Until
10. Open Skies
11. Color Me Home 



15 March 2017

Classic Rock Icons BLUES IMAGE Featuring MIKE PINERA Prove That The Best Songs Are TIMELESS!


Los Angeles, CA - In 1970, Tampa-based rockers Blues Image took audiences on the trip of a lifetime with their smash hit single “Ride Captain Ride” - a song that continues to embed itself in pop culture consciousness, showing up as recently as 2004 in the hilarious Will Ferrell comedy Anchorman: The Legend Of Ron Burgundy. Vocalist/guitarist Mike Pinera founded Blues Image in the late ‘60s and quickly turned the band into a powerhouse collective with a reputation for stunning musicianship and, of course, exquisite songwriting. Pinera left the group briefly to front the mighty Iron Butterfly, but he’s kept the Blues Image fire burning bright for over 5 decades! Now, a remarkable new collection, Timeless, that honors the songs of the past as well as brand new material will be released on CD this March 31 courtesy of Purple Pyramid Records.

Timeless showcases both Pinera’s past accomplishments with fantastic new renditions of “Ride Captain Ride” and Iron Butterfly’s “In A Gadda Da Vida” as well as his present skills as a songwriter on such tunes as “Love Is The Answer,” “Pay My Dues” and more! With guest appearances by blues rock legend Pat Travers and Journey’s Jonathan Cain, Timeless is sure to be a hit among fans of Blues Image and classic 70s rock!

Track List:
1. Ride Captain Ride
2. In A Gadda Da Vida
3. Fantasy Of Love
4. Come Back
5. Love Is The Answer
6. Touch My Heart
7. Pay My Dues
8. In The Garden Of Eden
9. Leaving My Troubles Behind
10. Butterfly Bleu
11. Isla
12. Something To Say

Buy the CD: https://cleorecs.com/store/shop/blues-image-feat-mike-pinera-timeless-cd/

Press inquiries:
Glass Onyon PR
Billy James
PH: 828-350-8158
glassonyonpr@gmail.com

CLEOPATRA RECORDS, Inc.
11041 Santa Monica Blvd #703
Los Angeles CA 90025
www.CleopatraRecords.com

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14 March 2017

Experimental Guitarist Rex Shepherd Releases Three Albums Digitally!


Described as Robin Trower meets Miles Davis!

Guitarist Rex Shepherd has released three albums digitally: “Ohio”, “Sonority” and “Duets”. Combining elements of jazz improvisation and harmony with an approach to guitar playing heavily influenced by diverse players such as Jim Hall, Robin Trower, Fred Frith, and sitar virtuoso Ravi Shankar, Rex Shepherd has forged a niche for himself with original music that typically lies somewhere just outside the usual genre labels but is still music that is approachable.

Says Rex, “This new music was recorded in my personal studio, much of it with other musicians in duets, and at various times throughout the last few years. The past several years have delivered to me a greater understanding of the fleeting nature of this lifetime, so I decided to release much of what I had accumulated, in part to satisfy my own need to communicate musically with the world outside of my little sphere of existence, but also I wanted to honor the musicians who played this music with me. It is these musical and personal relationships that are at the heart of creating music, whether composed or improvised, and for the people who listen to it I hope it also creates a connection between us. Much peace and music to all people, everywhere.”

Having been described as “Robin Trower meets Miles Davis”, Shepherd's music spans from full on instrumental jazz rock tunes to traditional jazz compositions with a good dose of free improvisation and sound experimentation using “prepared” and effected guitar sounds and instruments such as the “oceanharp” and the Theremin.

Shepherd's band, sometimes going under the name No End of Now, employs a revolving cast of the most creative players he can find who are willing to take part in a project that is often arranged while playing and with no limitations on the players' expression of the music. The compositions are also a blend of influences, from Wayne Shorter to John Cage, and most often are directly inspired by people, literature and other art forms, and experiences that hold significant meaning in Shepherd's life.

Says Rex, “I feel really lucky to get to play with some great musicians and always look forward to meeting new people to create sounds with...it's amazing how the same music can sound so different with the personalities of other players in any given moment. Playing with a group is a very fluid thing when everyone is listening, then responding...it becomes intuitive and ethereal, the closest thing to telecommunication I've ever experienced. When I play solo it’s similar in a way, in that I am responding to inner voices and emotional impulses in a meditative sort of way. I'm not a technical player, I rarely practice technique unless I discover a particular thing I want to use to express my ideas. With whatever technique I have, I hope that I can bring out the best of my musical ideas. One of my main influences, Jim Hall, is a master lyricist and I could only hope for a fraction of the melody under that guy's fingers. I play what I want to play and I don’t want to copy anyone, but I do a pretty good impression of myself most of the time.”

The releases:



Ohio
With the exception of “Desire”, a ballad Rex wrote several years ago, the music on this recording is all improvised. The songs consist of duet recordings captured in his studio after he had returned home to Ohio for a short time. “The musicians joining me on this recording are not only thoughtful and skillful players but are also beautiful people, and I am grateful to them for their music and their friendship during my stay on the 'North Coast'”.
https://rexshepherd.bandcamp.com/album/ohio



Sonority
This recent recording features a set of improvised tunes that were arrived at after John and Rex conducted their usual pre-roll discussions about the state of current affairs in the U.S. “Being fortunate enough to have two voices with which to speak out against what I see as injustice, inequality, and hatred, I felt that releasing this music, even if not listened to by many, would at least add to the spirit and energy of the peaceful movement for change taking place currently.”
https://rexshepherd.bandcamp.com/album/sonority



Duets
Except for the improvisations “Etude #2” and “April 9th”, this release features compositions by Rex that have existed anywhere from 15 years, in the case of “In the Shade”, to just two days before being recorded like “Happy Little Trees”. “The takes are imperfect. The music is presented here with minimal changes in the mixes so that it will accurately depict our journey feeling our way through it. I preferred to keep the imperfections so that these takes more closely resemble the music that one might hear if John and I were playing the tunes live, where boundaries are pushed and the music flows moment by moment. When challenged with making music I am buoyed by a quote from my musical hero, the great Jim Hall, 'The instrument keeps me humble. Sometimes I pick it up and it seems to say: No, you can't play today. I keep at it anyway, though.' Much peace and music to all people, everywhere.”
https://rexshepherd.bandcamp.com/album/duets

For more information:
Website: https://rexshep.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/musicpagerexshepherd/

Press inquiries: Glass Onyon PR, PH: 828-350-8158, glassonyonpr@gmail.com

13 March 2017

Blackfield Feat. Steven Wilson Release "Lonely Soul" Video Taken From New Studio Album "Blackfield V"


Everything is broken
Everything is chaos

London - Ahead of the release of their new studio album V on March 17th through Kscope, Blackfield, the collaboration between Israeli songwriter and musician Aviv Geffen, and British musician and producer Steven Wilson, have revealed a new video for the song “Lonely Soul”, created by long time collaborator Lasse Hoile (www.lassehoile.com)

VIEW HERE:


Hoile explains his inspiration for the clip, “When I heard Lonely Soul for the first time I just felt it was like a scene from one of the many stories I’ve heard over the years, people’s experiences dealing with depression and anxiety. It became a personal story after a very good friend of mine had been suffering a great deal with this, and with their depression not being treated properly it developed into a form of self loathing. Although sad, this is an important subject I think we all need to be aware of and hopefully we will learn to reach out and help each other. The hardest part is often asking for help.”

Along with playing shows in Europe with Biffy Clyro last month, Aviv Geffen recently held his 6th Annual Rock Gala in Tel Aviv. The sold out show was a chance for him to celebrate his 20 years since the release of his 1997 album, Full Moon.

Aviv Geffen invited special guests to perform on the night including the UK’s Jake Bugg, fellow Israelis Dudu Tassa, Orit Shachaf and Avi Buffalo. The event also saw a rare collaboration between Geffen and Iranian dissident musician Shahin Najafi (http://www.shahinnajafimusic.com/about-shahin-najafi) in what was described in the New York Times as “an effort to prove that despite bitter enmity between their countries, ordinary people can find common ground. As they performed the rare Hebrew-Farsi fusion Thursday night, the standing-room-only audience of 6,000 gave a rousing applause.”
Read the full article here: https://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2017/03/03/world/middleeast/ap-ml-israel-iran-peace-concert.html?_r=3

BLACKFIELD V – The album

The new studio album Blackfield V was written and recorded over a period of 18 months in both Israel and England and contains 13 linked songs that form a flowing 45 minute ocean themed song cycle. With the duo expertly handling vocals, guitars, and keyboards, they brought in Tomer Z from the Blackfield band on drums, Eran Mitelman on keys, and string arrangements were performed by the London Session Orchestra. Blackfield V is a powerful journey through catchy melodies, lush arrangements, and stunning production, with legendary producer / engineer Alan Parsons working on three of the album’s key tracks.

The pair makes for a formidable musical force; Geffen has worked with legendary producers Tony Visconti and Trevor Horn, has played live with U2 and Placebo, and is currently a judge on the Israeli TV show The Voice. Wilson, after a long tenure as the leader of the hugely influential band Porcupine Tree, has since embarked on a highly successful solo career, achieving 3 UK top 40 albums (the most recent also making the top 3 in Germany, and The Netherlands), and 4 Grammy nominations.



1. A Drop in the Ocean (1.23)
2. Family Man (3.37)
3. How Was Your Ride? (3.58)
4. We’ll Never Be Apart (2.54)
5. Sorrys (2.58)
6. Life is an Ocean (3.26)
7. Lately (3.24)
8. October (3.31)
9. The Jackal (3.56)
10. Salt Water (2.39)
11. Undercover Heart (4.02)
12. Lonely Soul (3.42)
13. From 44 to 48 (4.31)

Blackfield V will be released on the following formats all of which are available to pre-order now: http://found.ee/BLACKFIELD_V

2 disc - CD / Blu-Ray – presented in a deluxe media book with the Blu-Ray offering audiophiles a listening experience second to none, with the album in high resolution stereo and 5.1 surround sound. Includes a 36 page colour booklet
Double 180g heavyweight LP - cut at 45 rpm and presented in gatefold packaging with a four page booklet and a free mp3 download.
CD – digipack CD
LP Picture Disc –a Limited Edition single disc 140g vinyl with MP3 download, highlighting the stunning Lasse Hoile artwork
Digital

(Photo: Hajo Meuller)

Blackfield online:
https://www.facebook.com/Blackfield-103704446366593
https://www.facebook.com/avivgeffenofficial
https://www.facebook.com/StevenWilsonHQ
https://www.instagram.com/avivgeffenmusic
https://www.instagram.com/stevenwilsonhq
http://stevenwilsonhq.com

Press inquiries: Glass Onyon PR, PH: 828-350-8158 (USA), glassonyonpr@gmail.com

12 March 2017

Concert Review: The Ten Tenors in Concert at The Colonial Theater

The Ten Tenors in Concert at The Colonial Theater
March 10, 2017
Pittsfield, Mass.

The Ten Tenors warmed up a chilled capacity crowd at The Colonial Theater in Pittsfield Massachusetts on a typical blustery winter night in the Berkshires. The crossover classical group is celebrating their 20th year with the Power of Ten Tour. The tremendously successful act has accounted for six Platinum and Gold records and performed alongside countless music legends including Andrea Bocelli, André Rieu, John Travolta, Nicole Kidman, Geoffrey Rush, Keith Urban, Rod Stewart, Alanis Morissette, Sarah Brightman, Willie Nelson, Katherine Jenkins and Christina Aguilera. It comes as no surprise to me that they have the utmost respect of music industry people all over the world. 

Their set was comprised of two acts of diversity and musical excellence. The very first thing that struck me just before they opened the night was the stage lighting. The lights came shining down on the performers like rays from the heavens. The interesting thing was that it felt like musical heaven while taking in this special evening.

I was impressed with this group of men prior to attending the concert. I watched their cover of the Queen classic “Bohemian Rhapsody” on YouTube (which has over 1.2 million views and counting) and was blown away by their exceptional talent. My first thought after that was how incredible it must be to see them perform on stage! I was even more impressed once the show kicked off with another Queen staple, “We Are The Champions.”



What I was not prepared for was their implausible diversification and electric stage presence. These Australian performers know how to present any kind of music.  Their abilities to do so points to the different ranges that each vocalist commands and how they are positioned on the stage. They do have a good sense of humor as well and the choreography was spot on and always right in sync.

I think the highlights of the night for my ears were the “Jersey Boys Medley” and the encore of “Bohemian Rhapsody” and Bowie’s “Heroes,” which closed out the show and gave me chills several times. I am a huge Bowie fan and always have been so this was the icing on the cake for my night.

I must tip my hat not only to the all-around performance of the ten men but the three others that provided the instrumentation, Ben Kiehne (piano), David Orr (guitar) and Trent Bryson-Dean (drums) were essential to their presentation as well. Without them it would just be voices, which would also sound wonderful. The musicians made a difference and so did the piped in orchestrations they had. Each number came together flawlessly once again proving that the most amazing instrument is the human voice. None of the extras included were necessary, they were just bonuses added to ten incredible vocalists with varying arrays of resonance.

The Ten Tenors are a guaranteed fun night for any music lover. The fact that they cover a wide expanse of genres give them a worldly appeal - from the crowd that appreciates opera to the all-encompassing lovers of pop and rock music. It all comes together for an amazing night of entertainment.


Selfie posted on Facebook of the audience at The Colonial, were you there?

Set List:
 
ACT 1:
WE ARE THE CHAMPIONS
JUST THE WAY YOU ARE
MARECHIARE
TORNA A SURIENTO
LA DANZA 
NOTHING COMPARES TO YOU
HALLELUJAH 
LAND DOWN UNDER
WALTZING MATILDA
STILL CALL
JERSEY BOYS MEDLEY

ACT 2:
CANCION DEL MARIACHI
ARANJUEZ CON TUAMORE
AMIGOS PARA SIEMPRE
DIVA MEDLEY
THINKING OUT LOUD
UNCHAINED MELODY
THE BOXER
ANYTHING FOR LOVE
Encore:
BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY
BOHO NESSUN DORMA
HEROES

Review Provided By: Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck
March 12, 2017
Founder of: 

10 March 2017

EchoTest Feat. Bass Virtuoso Julie Slick To Release New Concept Album "From Two Balconies"


Featuring special guest artists including King Crimson drum legend Pat Mastelotto!

Philadelphia - Bassists Julie Slick (Adrian Belew Power Trio, Crimson ProjeKct) and Marco Machera are proudly presenting a new EchoTest album, exploring new heights in this bassist collaboration with their third release: “From Two Balconies”. Displaying an even higher production value, a new member (drummer Alessandro Inolti), many more guests (Pat Mastelotto, Tim Motzer, Ali Wadsworth, Ian Gray, Greg Rosen, and Sarah Anderson), the record is a departure from the heavily instrumental and bass-dominated “Fourth Dementia” (2014) and “Le Fil Rouge” (2015). It features lead vocals on 7 out of 10 tracks - Marco takes this role on a few songs, but he also shares this job with Mike Visser (Imaginary Tricks) and Claire Wadsworth. The result is a modern-sounding, yet classic record that defies genres, showcasing music that is truly progressive in nature. Featuring artwork by the legendary Derek Riggs.

“From two Balconies' chronicles a contemporary tragedy, the resulting resonance of characters in a tempestuous tormented limbo.” - Julie Slick

“This is not what you would expect from EchoTest after an album like 'Le Fil Rouge'. There's obviously a common thread in all of our music - but we naturally set new goals and redefine ourselves with every new effort.” - Marco Machera

Julie Slick is a virtuoso bassist and composer known for her wide array of unique tones and substantial melodic invention. Throughout her career, she has developed a distinctive voice through international performances and recording with acclaimed first class musicians in both the progressive rock and jazz communities (with the Adrian Belew Power Trio, Crimson ProjeKct, EchoTest, R_M_S, Motzer Slick Ti, PAPER CAT, and Springs).

Says Julie, “We originally had the idea to use the title after Marco explained to me the Italian expression 'Fuori come un balcone', which means 'out like a balcony' or 'you're crazy!' We tend to get in this manic, highly productive, highly hilarious place when are together, so this seemed to suit our third release... but then the album was written during a very in-limbo, purgatorial period in my life, and I actually still live nowhere, so the music has this feeling, this sense of being strewn out quite literally between two balconies.”

EchoTest are:

Julie Slick - bass VI, drum programs
Marco Machera - bass V, vocals
Alessandro Inolti - drums

Featuring:

Pat Mastelotto - drums (track 3, 5)
Tim Motzer - guitar (tracks 1, 3, 5, 10)
Ian Gray - trombone (track 1, 6)
Greg Rosen - trumpet (track 1, 6)
Zach Lopresti - guitar (track 1)
Mike Visser - vocals (tracks 1, 2, 6), guitar (track 8)
Ali Wadsworth - vocals (tracks 3, 6, 8, 10)
Sarah “flossy” Anderson - violin (track 6)
Claire Wadsworth - vocals, piano (track 8)
Gary Slick - vocals (track 9)

Produced by EchoTest and mixed by Todd Mecaughey at Cambridge Sound studios in Philadelphia

To purchase EchoTest's “From Two Balconies”: https://julieslick.bandcamp.com/album/from-two-balconies

Videos:
EchoTest Official Music Video for “Supercell”:


EchoTest “The Plight” Album Release 2k17 (New live video featuring four different venues from the tour):


For more information:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/slickmachera/
Julie Slick's official website: http://julieslick.com/

Press inquiries: Glass Onyon PR, PH: 828-350-8158, glassonyonpr@gmail.com

Instrumental New Age-Classical Review: Keith Gehle-Space and Time

Release Date: June 15, 2016
Label: Independent

Keith Gehle is a classically trained guitarist. From my experience listening to those that come from that realm, it does make a difference and has a very positive effect on the music presented. Everything started with classical music. There is always that foundation from which everything is born and then a wellspring of creativity is then realized. Many different genres have sub genres however classical remains the rock that holds it all together.

With Space and Time Keith Gehle practices that very principal of building from a core foundation with great success. It is like taking a book filled with blank pages and populating it with images, thoughts and atmospheres to create the all-encompassing work of art. This process can only be imagined through each individual artist and then translated to the strings of a guitar or any other instrument. 

If you are familiar with the famous instrumental by Mason Williams titled “Classical Gas” you can hear the potential to create something like that on this recording. Keep in mind that song is unique and played at a very high level of proficiency. Even though most of Keith’s music comes at you in a leisurely pace, I can still envision him playing a song like that. His fingers do all the talking and invite you to let your mind do all the walking. Walking in a relative sense…in sync with the music as it pulls you in and influences a good feeling and sense of wellbeing.

Each track melts into the other seamlessly. There are 11 tracks in total on Space and Time and each one is a gorgeous representation of the new age and classical genre meeting half way to create a successful marriage of sound.

“Walking” was a favorite among an entire album of favorites. There was not one track I could not appreciate. The simplicity, delicacy and arrangements were superb.  “Walking,” which I mentioned previously had an impact because of the title and what it implies. It is like taking that inner journey yet floating along on your feet to another destination with complete satisfaction and joy. Although in this instance it was a mental exercise, I can see myself listening to this music walking, sitting or driving. This is what I can get from one track by looking at the title and listening to the music and putting the two together. I then find a relation or common ground through my own thought process and spirituality. There are no instructions or preconceived ideas to expect before playing this music, just turn it on and let the process happen.

Thank you, Keith Gehle for the nice walk and the atmospheres you created along the way.


5/5 Stars

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck
March 10, 2017

Founder of:

Review Provided By New Age Music Reviews

Tracks: 
01.  Waiting for the Sun
02.  Lavender Sky
03.  November Memories
04.  The Escaping Light
05.  Thanksgiving Day
06.  Tone Poem No. 6 (Space and Time)
07.  Girl on a Swing
08.  Walking
09.  My Setting Sun
10.  Cooper’s Creek
11.  Tone Poem No. 2 (Stars of the Desert Sky)