Band: Giant Flying Turtles; Members: Calvin Bennett-vocals, upright bass, 6- and 12-string guitars and cello; Johnny Young-vocals, piano, keyboards, acoustic and electric guitars; TJ Jordan-guitars and vocals; and Jim Toscano-drums and percussion
Album: Waltz to the World
Being able to understand the emotional life struggles of people of diverse backgrounds is an uncanny ability that not everyone possesses. But the musicians of the Brooklyn-based progressive band, Giant Flying Turtles, are powerfully relating to listeners of diverse genres on their recently released second album, ‘Waltz to the World.’ The group’s record intriguingly mixes such genres as rock, Americana, bluegrass and folk, in a distinct way that commands listeners’ attention, and leaves them pondering their own emotions and connections. Led by innovative singer-songwriter-instrumentalists, Calvin Bennett and Johnny Young, the band offers 11 tracks of enticing explorations of how people truly relate to each other.
Giant Flying Turtles’ latest album begins with the folk rock entry, ‘No Turning Back,’ which cleverly pays tribute to Police’s signature sound. Also infused with a blues and Americana vibe, the song features an entrancing and progressive melody that’s driven by its dynamic keys and piano notes.
‘Waltz to the World’s sophomore track, ‘Stay Out Late,’ which is the record’s most noteworthy and memorable addition, is driven by a stunning jazz-inspired piano. The tune is also compelled by a all-encompassing blues and jazz beat that clearly leaves its mark on the equally spectacular vocal harmonies and guitar riffs. The dance inspiring song notes how the musicians want to live in the moment and enjoy life, but they also recognize what the people they care about are feeling.
‘Stay Out Late’ then transitions into the intriguing bluegrass and jazz-infused entry, ‘The Devil and Me.’ The musicians admit that they can’t be completely freed from their devilish ways. With the relatable message being driven by an engaging drum beat, guitars and piano melody, the track would surely help contribute to the liveliness of a a great live show.
The group’s next track is the bluesy and progressive rock-inspired ‘One of a Kind.’ The jazz and hard-rock-inspired tune, which is interestingly driven by luminous guitars, features high-energy nuances that pay tribute to such diverse bands as Chicago, Styx and Queen. Bennett and Young expressively sing about how their hearts and souls will be woven together with the people they love until the end of time.
‘River Runs Dry,’ the next entry on ‘Waltz to the World,’ takes a more soulful approach as the musicians express their emotions. The alt and progressive rock beats and vocals, which are backed by a passionate piano and folk guitar, give a Beatles vibe as the singers croon about their life continuously moving on, no matter what circumstances they face.
The album than transitions into ‘Train Song,’ which intriguingly combines swing blues and jazz elements with a progressive rock sensibility. The song features intriguingly mixes gritty ’80s-inspired alt-rock guitar riffs with a soulful jazz piano.
Giant Flying Turtles then offers the swing, rock and country-infused track, ‘Three Shades of Blue,’ which features a riveting melody. The stunning vocal harmonies give a uniquely flowing energy, despite the musicians questioning how sincere the person in their lives truly is towards them.
‘Waltz to the World’ than switches to the soulful entry, ‘Hold the Flag.’ The mellow piano and strings exuded a subdued progressive rock vibe. The musicians effectively insist that they don’t need to always follow the crowd, which highlights their strong will and determination to succeed on their own.
The next song on the record is the country, folk and rock-inspired ‘Banjo,’ which features a festive charm. The upbeat and eclectic vocals and piano and strings will undoubtedly inspire listeners to dance.
Giant Flying Turtles continues to keep the eccentric rock and blues beat alive with the gruff track, ‘Good to be Alive.’ Combining the raspy vocals with a country undertone and a soulful piano, which surprisingly helps make the entry balanced and wide-ranging, the song intriguingly notes how the vocalists appreciate being with the person they truly cares about.
The band’s current record ends with the intriguing progressive rock and jazz-infused title track. The tune uniquely infuses a guitar under the melody, while Bennett and Young determinedly note how they know that the difficult things in life will work themselves out.
Being able to empathize with the emotional life struggles of people of diverse backgrounds is an uncanny ability that not everyone possesses. But the musicians of Giant Flying Turtles naturally possess the powerful ability of being able to relate to listeners of diverse genres on ‘Waltz to the World.’ The group’s sophomore record intriguingly mixes such genres as rock, Americana, bluesgrass and folk, in a distinct way that commands listeners’ undivided attention.
As a life-long fan of entertainment, particularly films, television and music, and an endless passion for writing, Karen Benardello decided to combine the two for a career. She graduated from New York's LIU Post with a B.F.A in Journalism, Print and Electronic. While still attending college, Karen began writing for Shockya during the summer of 2007, when she began writing horror movie reviews. Since she began writing for Shockya, Karen has been promoted to the position of Senior Movies & Television Editor. Some of her duties in the position include interviewing filmmakers and musicians, producing posts on celebrity news and contributing reviews on albums and concerts. Some of her highlights include attending such festivals and conventions as the Tribeca Film Festival, the New York Film Festival, SXSW, Toronto After Dark, the Boston Film Festival and New York Comic-Con.