Archive for the ‘MUSIC REVIEWS’ Category

Joel Havea’s String & Woods EP Review

Posted by Karen Benardello On May - 28 - 2014 0 Comment
Joel Havea's String & Woods EP Review

Singer: Joel Havea EP: String & Woods Production: Simon Grey & Joel Havea (Nasty Research Centre Hamburg) Soulfully and passionately exploring the emotional solutions to the impeding obstacles that are sure to hold you back, most notably in romantic relationships, can be a challenging aspect in life. But singer-songwriter Joel Havea, a skilled and resourceful musician from the cultural capital of Melbourne, Australia, who now resides in the versatile city of Hamberg, Germany, powerfully developed his own mix of soul and reggae infused lyrics and instrumentals in his new EP, ‘String & Woods,’ to more readily find those solutions. In the wake of his well-received debut album, 2012′s ‘You Make  [ Read More ]


Juliette Jules’ Black Crow EP Review

Posted by Karen Benardello On May - 23 - 2014 0 Comment
Juliette Jules' Black Crow EP Review

Singer: Juliette Jules EP: Black Crow Producer: Peter Karroll Teenagers around the world often rely on whatever creative outlets are readily accessible to them to express their powerfully complex and diverse emotions that range from love, loss and the need for acceptance. Rising Parisian singer-songwriter Juliette Jules, is one such talented adolescent who’s passionately and productively funneling her desire to be heard and appreciated in her new EP, ‘Black Crow.’ The enthralling EP, which is being digitally released today for free to celebrate the vocalist’s 16th birthday, maturely combines her diverse musical and literary influences. Throughout ‘Black Crow’s entirety, Jules powerfully infused her appreciation of the purity and emotion of  [ Read More ]


Eluusif’s Aliens Do It Better EP Review

Posted by Karen Benardello On May - 11 - 2014 0 Comment
Eluusif's Aliens Do It Better EP Review

Artist: Eluusif EP: Aliens Do It Better Production: Eluusif Pondering the true emotional question of what kind of love is right and embracing a genuine, personal connection with those you sincerely connect with is one of the leading and captivating messages in modern popular music. But incorporating that exploration of honest bonding isn’t a common theme in the pulsating world of electronic songs that regularly fuel the animated club scene. But London-based musician Eluusif, a songwriter and producer of electronic music, energetically infused the spellbinding tracks on his new EP, ‘Aliens Do It Better,’ with powerful beats and gripping lyrics about love and being accepted by society. The multimedia artist,  [ Read More ]


Mangoseed’s Basquiat Album Review

Posted by Karen Benardello On May - 2 - 2014 0 Comment
Mangoseed's Basquiat Album Review

Artist: Mangoseed Album: Basquiat Production: Mangosee Avidly revealing your life’s most emotional and spiritual challenges, particularly your drive to rebel against society’s expectations on love and integrating into the community, has long fueled the success of rock and reggae music. The versatile, politically and spiritually charged London funk-rock-reggae band, Mangoseed, powerfully filled their multifaceted debut album, ‘Basquiat,’ with their disdain for readily following what society says is acceptable. ‘Basquiat,’ which is set to be released on May 22, features lead vocalist, Nicholai La Barrie; lead guitarist, Karlos Coleman; bass guitarist, Richard Hardy; and drummer Sam Campbell. Their songs incorporate a unique blend of influences from such bands as the Red  [ Read More ]


Michael Cullen Love Transmitter Album Review

Posted by Karen Benardello On April - 6 - 2014 0 Comment
Michael Cullen Love Transmitter Album Review

Artist: Michael Cullen Album: Love Transmitter Producer: Tim Powles Being sincere while passionately expressing your thoughts and feelings about life and love isn’t always an easy process, but when you hold the powerful musical versatility and talent as Australian musician Michael Cullen, the method becomes more genuine and authentic. The multi-talented and resourceful singer-songwriter-instrumentalist, who fronted such 90′s bands as The Hardheads and Watershed, is proving his enchanting grip of the randomness and sincerity of relationships with his solo debut album, ‘Love Transmitter.’ The record, which was originally released in his native country in 2002, has been enthrallingly remastered for its recent American release. The performer, whose musical styles have  [ Read More ]


Lael Summer’s Burden to Bear Album Review

Posted by Karen Benardello On February - 24 - 2014 0 Comment
Lael Summer's Burden to Bear Album Review

Artist: Lael Summer Album: Burdent to Bear Producers: Tomás Doncker and James Dellatacoma for True Groove There’s nothing quite like feeling lost and alone in an ever-moving and evolving world that quickly forces you to mature, especially if you don’t feel ready to embrace the connections you unexpectedly begin to form along the way. Soul-funk-pop singer-songwriter Lael Summer passionately and authentically encompassed that at-times harrowing process of personally maturing in such a bustling, intimidating city as New York with her debut album, ‘Burden to Bear.’ Mixing vulnerable lyrics with enthralling instrumentals, the multi-faceted musician creatively and instinctively fused her identity with her experiences, dreams and desires to create a powerful,  [ Read More ]


Top 10 Albums of 2013

Posted by lonnie On December - 29 - 2013 0 Comment
Kanye West

Unfortunately deemed as the year of the “selfie” and “twerk”, 2013 also marks a time when radio-friendly artists actually made “good” music. Infectious, yet not overly repetitive songs from Fall Out Boy, Miley Cyrus, Beyonce and Avicii restored my faith in commercial music. As these singers rose to stardom this year, some past favorites plummeted with lackluster releases, such as Lady Gaga’s “Applause”, Jay Z’s “Magna Carta Holy Grail” and Arcade Fire’s “Reflektor”. In every defeat, there’s a winner and thankfully new artists, such as Lorde, Haim, Jake Bugg and Sky Ferreira, made 2013 one of my favorite years for music. So congratulations to those on Shockya’s Top 10 Albums  [ Read More ]

Artist Of The Week: Deer Tick

Posted by lonnie On September - 25 - 2013 0 Comment
Deer Tick

With fall officially kicking off this week, you, Shockya readers, no longer have to justify your choice of listening to dismal playlists in the blissful summer days. It is finally acceptable to crank up those moodier tracks. So, you can retire your pop tunes or at least save them for an exceptionally happy day because rock music is at the forefront of this season and leading the way is the folk rock band, Deer Tick. Fronted by singer/song-writer and guitarist, John McCauley, Deer Tick dropped their fifth studio album, “Negativity”, this past Tuesday, September 24th, via Partisan Records. As an avid fan of all things “McCauley”, which include his other  [ Read More ]

Artist Of The Week: MS MR

Posted by lonnie On September - 11 - 2013 0 Comment

Nowadays, it is almost second nature to drown out vocals with a flood of instrumental sounds. As if auto-tune wasn’t helpful enough, these artists rely all too often on beats to fill the emotional void in their vocals. According to radio charts, this tactic can be deemed as successful, but when a talent dares to perform a track live, falling flat on stage commonly occurs (cough, cough Miley Cyrus). So, let’s introduce you, Shockya readers, to the New York based duo, MS MR, a group who fearlessly expresses a “pop” sound that rests heavily on raw vocals. Comprised of Lizzy Plapinger, the “MS” (vocalist), and Max Hershenow, the “MR” (producer),  [ Read More ]

Artist Of The Week: Pickwick

Posted by lonnie On September - 3 - 2013 0 Comment

Pop music has become all too commonplace these days. Yes, I do occasionally enjoy belting out to Katy Perry’s “Roar” or Miley Cyrus’s “Wrecking Ball” or Lady Gaga’s “Applause”, but as the seasons change, my playlists must follow suit. Shockya readers, it’s time to say so long to the carefree summer days and usher in the distressed fall days with more thought provoking and less auto-tuned music. Note that this pop music “jab” is mostly directed at the now infamous Cyrus, who was far from serious with her performance of “We Can’t Stop” at this year’s MTV Video Music Awards. So, let’s ditch the “twerk” and welcome the tunes from  [ Read More ]

Artist Of The Week: Justin Timberlake and ‘N SYNC

Posted by lonnie On August - 26 - 2013 0 Comment
Justin Timberlake

While I am all about giving Shockya’s “Artist Of The Week” to fresh-faced singers, every now and then a seasoned talent deserves to dethrone the youngins and retake the title. So, my apologies to the next Ray-Ban, Converse and flannel clad outfit because Justin Timberlake and his ‘N SYNC pals triumphed to the top this week with their performance at the 2013 MTV Video Music Awards. As a teenager during the ‘N SYNC pop reign, I will always have a “soft” spot for this quintet, no matter how much they have tipped the scale since the 90s. Determined to be “different” from the other Juicy Couture donning teens, I sided  [ Read More ]

Artist Of The Week: CHVRCHES

Posted by lonnie On August - 6 - 2013 0 Comment

Electro-pop music has finally been justified with the Scottish outfit, CHVRCHES. The group, which consists of Lauren Mayberry (lead vocals), Iain Cook (multi-instrumentalist, vocals) and Martin Doherty (synthesizers, vocals), doesn’t abuse their instrumental privileges by flooding tunes with clumps and clumps of beats. Instead, the trio has the ideal mix of catchy melodies, memorable lyrics and vocal intonation. CHVRCHES will be a breakout band of 2013 and their experimental sound will keep them afloat in this industry for many years to come. Let’s address one obvious outlier, the “V”. CHVRCHES is pronounced as “churches”, but to avoid the Google search clutter, the outfit opted for a letter replacement. Smart and  [ Read More ]

Top 10 Albums Of 2013 (So Far)

Posted by lonnie On July - 19 - 2013 0 Comment

Eclecticism seeps throughout my list of “Top 10 Albums Of 2013”. So far, this year has seen established artists drop new albums, which broadens their “own” music palette, but also expands the stifling ways of their overall genres and “newer” talents, who shock listeners with their bold debuts. 2013 has been far from a letdown musically, which only made compiling this list more difficult. Check out my “Top Ten” below. 1. Daughter “If You Leave” Daughter (also known as Elena Tonra) takes the NO.1 spot with her debut album, “If You Leave”, which dropped March 18th via 4AD. Yes, collectively the album is instrumentally, vocally and lyrically somber, but through  [ Read More ]

Artist Of The Week: The Mowgli’s

Posted by lonnie On July - 9 - 2013 0 Comment
The Mowgli's

Typically gravitating towards the “harder” or “darker” side of the rock genre, I often find my music misplaced in the carefree summer days. So, lately I have become more sympathetic to breezier melodies, which has opened me up to a side of the rock spectrum that I have longed for and thoughtlessly neglected. It’s time to turn a new leaf and thanks to the California outfit, The Mowgli’s, I have zero reservations about this undertaking. The eight-piece multi-instrumentalist band recently released their sophomore album, “Waiting For The Dawn”, on June 18th via The Island Def Jam Music Group. Following the group’s 2012 debut, “Sound The Drum”, and 2013 EP, “Love’s  [ Read More ]

Album Review: NGHBRS “Twenty One Rooms”

Posted by lonnie On July - 1 - 2013 0 Comment

Since the indie rock influx of the 21st Century, alternative rock music has been on the back burner, but thankfully, change is coming. With Chad Kroeger too engrossed in his recent nuptials with Avril Lavigne, alternative rock is clear of sabotage and gearing up for redemption. While I do enjoy listening to indie rock bands swoon over their lost lovers with weightless guitar riffs, I much prefer the alternative way of aggressive vocals coupled with heavy instrumentals. All my wishes have come true with the upcoming release from the Long Island outfit, NGHBRS. The quartet, which consists of Jordan Schneider (drummer), Ian Kenny (vocalist/keyboardist), Tommy Fleischmann (guitarist) ad Eric Vivelo  [ Read More ]

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