Sunday, November 23, 2008

"Get Your Love On" by Sexy Ester and the Pretty Mama Sisters (Pop Artist from Madison, Wisconsin(WI))

"Get Your Love On" by Sexy Ester and the Pretty Mama Sisters is a collection full of original, melodic pop/rock music. Lead vocals are strong and powerful, which lends a distinctive element to this group's sound. Get a rock groove on when you listen to "The Tambourine Song" as it showcases solid power chords on the guitar and rolling drum beats. "The Love Song" exhibits how tight these musicians are with their perfect timing, shown throughout the song. The addition of a grooving bass solo really makes the song rock. Taking a change up to a Latin rhythm, "The Simple Life" and "841" shows diversity within the band and includes the use of Latin percussion instruments. Fans of The Cranberries, Melissa Etheridge, or melodic pop/rock should definitely pick up "Get Your Love On."
-Diane and the Reviewer Team
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"Heart Gone Sober" by Jason Vigil (Pop Artist from Colorado(CO))

An up and coming alternative/pop rock artist Jason Vigil and his latest album "Heart Gone Sober" is one you won't want to miss listening to. Vigil's vocals are powerful and strong while the band is pure and never overbearing. The entire collection has a great complementing mix between vocals and instruments while lyrics are exceptionally flowing. In the title track "Heart Gone Sober," the lyrics present an appealing optimistic point of view. An acoustic performance, "Sad Month" is evidence of the talent of Vigil's solo performance. Vigil shows his ability to reach a higher vocal range in the beginning of "Come to Me" while the energy of alternative rock influence kicks in. If you like to listen to John Mayer or Matchbox 20 you will positively want to hear Jason Vigil's "Heart Gone Sober."
-Diane and the Reviewer Team

"Congo's Angels by Various (Pop Artist from Washington D.C.(DC))

Dedicated to provide global awareness of abusive conditions to women and children throughout the Democratic Republic of Congo, "Congo's Angels" by Various is truly an inspiring compilation of women collaborating to send a message. "It's Not a Big Deal" gives a tang of country mixed with inspiring lyrics. Not only are there songs featuring various styles of music, but you will also hear beautiful, spiritual depth in poetry describing the hurt and harm that has been caused as heard in "For the Women of Change" and also "You Are Not Alone." Vocals, whether sung or spoken, are exceptionally stimulating and serene in the message they send. These women truly are "angels" to promote awareness of abuse to women and children with a median that everyone will be encouraged to be aware and get involved. "Congo's Angels" is a wonderful and inspirational collection sure to please fans of genres such as easy listening, alternative rock, country, world, and spoken word.
-Diane and the Reviewer Team
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"The Restless Years" by Casino Royal (Pop Artist from Austria)

If you like Depeche Mode, you'll want to take a listen to "The Restless Years" by Casino Royal. This techno pop duo is fueled by an electronic feel which creates a refreshing mix of songs. Casino Royal shows dedication and time well spent in their studio producing this quality album. As you listen to each track you can hear a variety of electronic instruments with an impression of their creativity, while great care was spent balancing sounds so each instrument can be heard. Listen to "Battle of the Sexes" as it takes an upbeat turn with a bass rhythm kicking off the song leading into a Latin drum tempo. The use of synths is especially noted by using a horn section to add flavor to "Against All Reasons." Nicely slowing down the tempo in "To Fit," this duo demonstrates their versatility on this track, which features a catchy guitar lick. If you're a fan of Techno Pop, you'll enjoy this CD, which uses an invigorating selection of lyrics, synths, and versatility backed by a creative mix of rhythms.
-Diane and the Reviewer Team
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Saturday, November 22, 2008

"Mr. Sun" by Jude Johnstone (Jazz/Pop Artist from Los Angeles, California (CA))

"Mr. Sun" by Jude Johnstone is a easy listening/jazzy album with elements of brass instrumentation, soft drum brushes, and piano and bass in the mix. Johnstone has strong, yet touching, vocals while she sings with a variety of vocal ranges. The harmonies are sung with the same passion-filled emotions as the lead vocals. The title track, "Mr. Sun," has a cheerful Latin rhythm that makes you feel happy, with lyrics that compliment the rest of the instruments. "Don't Tell Me That It's Over" captures the feel of a nice, flowing jazz/blues song, with a soulful saxophone solo to top it off. "So Bad" is a relaxing, Jack Johnson-like track that exhibits Johnstone's vocal range. The creativity in the infusing brass instruments within songs adds texture to the band's sound, and the piano enriches the sense of a jazzy/blues style. Fans of easy listening/jazz music should definitely pick up "Mr. Sun."
-Diane and the Reviewer Team
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"Shine On Me" by Sharon Gosler (Pop/Jazz Artist from the Netherlands)

"Shine On Me" is the inspiring debut album from the extremely talented singer/songwriter Sharon Gosler. She is a gifted songwriter and possesses an extremely rich, captivating voice that few can match. Whether the setting is rock, blues, pop, or jazz, Gosler shines in each style. Her songs are well-crafted, with authentic lyrics, gorgeous melodies, and thoughtful arrangements. The production is well polished, professional, and commercially appealing. From the first track "(What if I had the) Chance," her passionate delivery grabs you and doesn't let you go. Her vocals are soulful and resonant, exhibiting tremendous personality. The touching "Macy's Song" is a showcase for her wide vocal range and powerful emotion. She sings the sultry, bluesy "Your Love" with convincing and compelling attitude. The moving "Faces of yesterday" is a haunting ballad, with Gosler again displaying her immense vocal range and a soulful, passionate delivery. Sharon Gosler is a female vocalist with tremendous talent and crossover appeal, and fans of pop and jazz should definitely check out her album "Shine On Me."
-Rodney and the Reviewer Team
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Tuesday, November 18, 2008

"All On Me" by Beth Phillips (Pop Artist from Louisiana (LA))

"All On Me" is the debut album from teen pop artist Beth Phillips. This is a fun album filled with catchy lyrics and great production. Beth has a stunning soulful quality to her voice and packs in some fantastic vocal performances. The songs flow and the arrangements are cleverly constructed without deviating from the concept. Beth has a truly original sound that is for the most part modern, although you can't help but notice some classic R&B and rock elements. The album sounds great and will sooth your ears with its slickness. Highlights are the opener "Friendship Is Forever," which contains a tantalizing hook and completely ties together what Beth is all about, and "Girls' Night Out". "Girls' Night Out" opens with a commanding piano line and evolves into a driving dance/ sing along club style song. "Fake" exhibits Phillips' jazzy side and shows you how the distinctness of Beth's voice can transcend genres. Fans of teen pop led by a soulful singer should consider giving "All On Me" a listen.
-William & the RadioIndy Review Team
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"Stir The Menagerie" by Paul Vincent Gandolfi (Pop/Rock Artist from Texas (TX))

"Stir The Menagerie" by Paul Vincent Gandolfi is a well-written, well-performed indie pop album that highlights the sheer talent of the fantastic singer/songwriter. Paul has been to many places in his musical journey, including bands, musicals, and film scores. What comes from this effort is an intimate taste of great vocal performances, thought provoking lyrics, and fine arrangements. The album sounds fantastic, with vocals at the forefront, as Gandolfi has a very distinct voice that is, in turn, complimented well by the arrangements. One highlight is "Bleed," which opens with a gentle melody and evolves into an ear grabbing lyrical performance. You'll remember the words to this one in no time. "Show Me" is another standout that features a delicate piano progression and gives listeners an intimate look at Paul. A cover of Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah" wraps things up and is the powerful finish to a powerful album. If you enjoy indie/pop/rock music, you will not be disappointed with "Stir the Menagerie."
-William & the RadioIndy Review Team
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"Lost Nomad" by Lost Nomad (Rock/Pop Artist from England)

"Lost Nomad" is the impressive self-titled release from do-it-yourself artist Diego Guzman. Guzman has created a new breed of alternative rock that fuses many musical styles and influences including elements of rock, funk, metal, jazz and punk-rock. He combines these components in a highly individual way, creating a very interesting and stimulating recording that cannot be easily pigeonholed. The writing is creative and inventive, layering many different textures, moods and colors. The airy, roaming feel of "Evergreen" is contrasted with powerful, hard-driving rockers such as "Survival Instinct" and "Blindness." The funky "Friendly Space" offers further contrast and variety, incorporating a reggae style groove and wavering effects on the guitar. The production is raw, clean and professional, providing a product that is radio-ready and very listenable. Guzman further demonstrates his versatility by providing a sultry, melodic environment with "Too Stoned" and "So Much Stronger," while "Faithful" contains captivating, commanding guitar lines coupled with a solid groove and Guzman's haunting vocals. "Little Wave" is another standout track, featuring catchy guitar riffs and an evocative vocal from Guzman. Fans of alternative rock in the style of Faith No More and Pearl Jam will enjoy listening to this release as it crosses many different musical contexts and boundaries.
-Rodney and the Reviewer Team
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Wednesday, November 12, 2008

“In the Way” by Hypnotiks (Pop Artist from the United Kingdom)

"In the Way" is the two-song EP from Hypnotiks & Damien Lynch, a production duo from Northwest London that explores new possibilities with their music. The album features two versions of their medium tempo "In the Way," one edition with vocals and an instrumental version. The instrumental version showcases the creative programming of the duo, where inventive beats and drum loops are combined with many melodic textures and colors of sounds. The vocal version adds their intoxicating and hypnotic melodies to mix, layering well-delivered harmonies that provide a smooth feel and depth to the recording. Both versions are memorable and well-produced, with the focus being catchy hooks combined with syncopated drum sounds. This two-song EP is a great introduction to Hypnotiks & Damien Lynch, leaving the listener eager for more. Fans of hip-hop with a chiefly melodic sound will enjoy "In the Way."
-Rodney and the Reviewer Team
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Monday, November 10, 2008

"Ready 2 Serve U" by Jameel Jahmay (R&B/Pop Artist from Virginia (VA))

Jameel Jahmay has created a memorable collection of Urban/R&B and Pop with "Ready 2 Serve U," a self-produced album showcasing his many musical talents. Jahmay is a versatile performer, moving seamlessly through the various styles and moods he creates, shining in each setting with his smooth vocal approach and intelligent lyrics. The production is clean and professional, with crisp programming and beats, tasteful vocal layering, and polished musical performances. "Special Greeting" is a lovely, touching ballad, with Jahmay singing straight from his heart. "So Wonderful" has a definite gospel vibe, with Jahmay's vocal range on full display. The creative composition and prominent acoustic guitar on "Find Love" gives this track an airy, live feel. The extremely funky "My Biz" is reminiscent of old-school grooves with a modern, contemporary flair. Jahmay covers many styles with this album and is comfortable and at home in each one. "Ready 2 Serve U" is an impressive release that will appeal to the fans of Urban/R&B, Soul, and Pop music.
-Rodney and the Reviewer Team
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"Body of Lies" by Layla Kaylif (Pop Artist from London, England)

Layla Kaylif's "Body of Lies," which is loosely based on the David Ignatius novel of the same name, is a modern blend of rock and pop featuring Middle Eastern world music influences and dark lyrics that explore spiritual, political and religious topics. Her album is conceptual and of a philosophical nature, with intelligent and provocative songwriting. Kaylif's vocals are moving, passionate and emotional throughout. "Jerusalem" is a danceable track that speaks about the current political issues there. "The Night Journey" and "The Black Madonna" are somewhat darker songs based on the nonexistence of the womanly traits of sympathy and compassion in the world. The evocative and haunting "You Live Once and Then You Die" is a stimulating exploration into the uncertainty of living now or for the future. The mysterious and truth-seeking "It Makes No Sense" explores the longing for a heavenly union or love. With "Body of Lies," Layla Kaylif has created a thought-provoking album that uses modern pop music with Middle Eastern world influences as a platform to investigate and discover new political perspectives.
-Rodney and the Reviewer Team
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"Dedicated" by David Cahalan (Pop Artist from Tampa, Florida (FL))

With the fittingly titled "Dedicated," David Cahalan pays tribute to the music of The Carpenters, for whom he is a former background singer. He modernizes each tune with his melodic, individual style, breathing new life into the original while making it his own. He opens the set with the familiar "Hurting Each Other," updating the standard tune with his modern style of pop. He gives the classic "Close To You" a contemporary flair with a bright, bouncing groove, and smooth lead and background vocals. His version of "For All We Know" is a touching ballad, featuring soulful vocals by Cahalan and a shimmering soprano sax melody. His rendition of "Superstar" features a great horn section and a brilliant string arrangement. "Bless the Beasts and the Children" is a wonderful duet, with Cahalan and his female counterpart in fine form. With "Dedicated," David Cahalan pays a suitable and proper tribute to truly great songs that were sung by Karen Carpenter. This is surely an album that all Carpenters' fans will appreciate.
-Rodney and the Reviewer Team
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"Memories Of You" by Simavi (Pop Artist from New York City, New York (NY))

"Memories Of You" is a noteworthy release by the male vocalist known as Simavi. Simavi gives us a look at the past and into the future, putting his spin on both the classic and contemporary. He breathes freshness into jazz standards, keeping the beauty and integrity of the original, yet making them his own by infusing his style, personality, and flair into each track. Simavi also self-produced the album, further highlighting his personal stamp on this collection. From the lush string arrangements of "Moonlight in Vermont" and "Love Looks So Well On You" to the swinging renditions of "The Way You Look Tonight" and "Fly Me To The Moon," Simavi is comfortable and at home in each setting. He is backed by an incredible orchestra of talented musicians featuring brilliant soloists, swinging horn sections, and well-crafted arrangements. His versatility is also on full display as he moves seamlessly through the Brazilian number "The Girl From Ipanema" and the more contemporary style of "To the Ends of the Earth." He also adds his sincere, heartfelt vocal style to the touching ballads "I Wish You Love" and "Memories of You." Simavi's "Memories Of You" will be enjoyed by fans of adult contemporary male vocalists and/or big band music.
-Rodney and the Reviewer Team
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Tuesday, November 4, 2008

“Words For The Birds” by Lauren Frost (Pop/Urban Artist from Chicago, Illinois (IL))

Singer/songwriter Lauren Frost has created a fine collection of memorable pop songs with "Words For The Birds," an outstanding set featuring skillful musicianship, clean production and most notably, her soulful vocals. "Wait & See," "Take It Slow" and "Hello Lovely" are all great examples of her polished and refined sound, intelligent writing, and soaring vocal ablilities. The supporting cast of musicians is very talented, providing exceptional solos and support throughout. Listen to the funky swagger of "Heavy In Your Shoes" and the melodic pop of "Sangria Tale," where Frost's infectious personality really shines through. Another highlight is "Little Boy," which features a percussive groove and showcases Frost's ability to blend harmony and melody so beautifully. The remix version of this track will have you ready for the dance club. "Cheezits" offers a look into Frost's humorous side, and she gives a witty, entertaining performance by once again injecting her personality and style into the track. The album also includes the tender moments of "Whatever Happens" and "Drop Off My Heart" which are expressive, soulful ballads that showcase Frost's immense vocal range. This is an impressive release from a very talented singer/songwriter that is highly recommended for fans of female vocalists and melodic pop. -Rodney and the Reviewer Team
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"Lifesketch" by Paul Vincent Gandolfi (Pop Artist from Texas (TX))

"Lifesketch," by Paul Vincent Gandolfi is a moving, extremely polished pop/rock release showcasing the many talents of this gifted singer-songwriter. It is apparent from just one listen that Gandolfi's intent and focus is on crafting well-written songs with wonderful harmonies, enjoyable melodies and clever arrangements. The personal, heartfelt lyrics in each composition hold significance and meaning. The vocals are a highlight of this release, with Gandolfi delivering strong lead vocals throughout, supported by tasteful harmonies. "Beautiful Misery" opens the album beautifully, with acoustic guitar and soaring vocal harmonies emphasizing the strong hook and melody of the song. "Endangered Heart" features an enchanting piano intro coupled with a mysterious, sincere vocal from Gandolfi. The production is transparent and clean, providing a product that is ready for mainstream radio. "Stranger Than Fiction" is a catchy, memorable song with interesting rhythmic changes. "The Poet & The Muse" is a deep, affectionate track with lyrical guitar lines and another passionate vocal from Gandolfi, again supported wonderfully by the background vocals. This album will appeal to the fans of pop/rock that enjoy simplistic instrumentation, meaningful lyrics and genuine, sincere vocals in the vein of John Mayer and Jack Johnson.
-Rodney and the Reviewer Team
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