Archive for the 'Music' Category

Fitz and the Tantrums has ‘All the Feels’ …Or Does It?

It’s been a week since I’ve had a chance to digest All the Feels, the latest release from Fitz and the Tantrums, which is the band’s fourth studio album. I’ve been a mild fan of them for the better part of five years now and finally got to see them live this past summer when I definitely got the Fitz fever. Without question, they put on one of my favorite performances I have had the privilege to experience in person. Their energy is infectious, but does this latest recording bring that same positive punch?

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Christmas Comes Early! An Exclusive Interview w/ DIAMANTE!

Diamante Coming In HotIt was like any other day of my life.  I drove the usual route home after a hard day at the office and was flipping through my favorite Sirius XM channels trying to find a familiar tune to God speed the way home with.  I do all of this on autopilot, just pressing pre-programmed favorite buttons onscreen, not paying attention to the particular channel names or whatnot. Then it hit me like a wall would eventually if you ran blindfolded indoors.  I heard these raspy, authoritative, take-no-prisoners female vocals, which I have never heard before. Immediately this singer had my full undivided attention. I looked at my radio unit and saw I landed on XM’s Octane and the song playing was called “Haunted” by a rock star named Diamante.  Right then and there I wanted to know all I could about Diamante. Thank the maker for instant gratification. Before I knew it Diamante’s album, Coming in Hot, was downloaded on my phone and my car ride home was all the sudden NOT just another day of my life.  It was an elated experience! Continue reading ‘Christmas Comes Early! An Exclusive Interview w/ DIAMANTE!’


3 Bands, 3 Albums in 2018

Usually when any of my four favorite bands release a new studio album, I get a little excited. When three of the four release new albums in the same year, I climb to the roof and do repeated backflips off the chimney. Such was the case this year as Dave Matthews Band, Daughtry and Imagine Dragons all gave the public something new to rock to in 2018. Since my biggest regret was not addressing each release individually as they occurred, you now get them bundled and gift-wrapped in this neat little article. Please hold the applause until later. We’ve got some music to talk about!

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The Brilliance of Sinclair

I was kind of late to the concert scene compared to most of my peers as a teen. I didn’t see my first show until I was 19. Since then, I’ve lost track of just how many concerts I’ve been to, but thankfully there has been that luxury of experiencing a lot more good shows than bad. With each of those headlining bands, there have been a plethora of opening acts I’ve been able to listen to as well. Some sang, some danced, but only a few performed. This past Wednesday, April 11th, another opening act was added to my list of artists seen. Wait, in this case let us say ‘experienced’. Prior to the Daughtry show at the Hard Rock Rocksino in Northfield, Ohio, a trio known simply as Sinclair took the stage. No one warned me just how impactful they would be.

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Gregg’s 2017 Album of the Year

If you felt like there was an overwhelming choice of new releases to listen to in 2017, you would be correct. Blockbuster headliners such as Taylor Swift, Eminem and U2 all released new albums this past year as did some fairly newer stars such as country singer Danielle Bradbery and pop hottie Dua Lipa. On the rap and hip-hop front, Lil Wayne has an album coming out on Christmas Day while Big Sean came out with his latest work last week. Did I listen to every album that came out this year to come to my conclusion? Of course not, that’s not realistic. However, after sifting through twelve months of various radio stations as well as a much more increased use of Pandora than in recent years, we have a winner.

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Imagine Dragons Releases Third Album

When their first album, Night Visions, was released in September of 2012, Imagine Dragons quickly started amassing a fanbase.  There are very few albums that not only grab, but retain my interest for months and years to come.  Night Visions did that in extraordinary fashion for me and many others and is still a record I go back to frequently.  Roughly three years later, the band came out with its sophomore album, Smoke + Mirrors.  For whatever reason, I never connected with it.  Nothing jumped out and grabbed me and I always found its debut track, “I Bet My Life,” to be rather noisy.  Critics were split on the record and I was bummed.  Still, it went gold in the U.S. and was successful overseas.  However, my musical concern grew.  Could they be the proverbial rookie flash-in-the-pan?  A one-and-done?

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Forgotten Friday Flick – “Shakedown”

To celebrate the review this week of Marco Siedelmann’s very cool and comprehensive B-movie book titled The Untold, In-Depth, Outrageously True Story of Shapiro Glickenhaus Entertainment, it seemed right to reminisce about the gold old SGE days by highlighting one of their biggest 80’s hit – welcome to Forgotten Friday Flick!  We’re heading into tough guy territory this week for a rough and tumble tale about some dirty cops who are putting the squeeze on everybody.  It’s up to two lone moralistic buddies – the best money can’t buy – to seek the truth and kick some serious ass.  When things go wrong it’s time for a…Shakedown! Continue reading ‘Forgotten Friday Flick – “Shakedown”’


Dave Matthews Band – Ranking Their Studio Albums

DMBIt’s no secret that Dave Matthews Band has been one of the most successful bands since the 90’s. There’s just something about their music that connects with me on a very soulful level. Maybe it’s the unconventional singing voice of Dave himself. It could be the marriage of all those instruments that blend into a unified musical journey. There’s also the story-telling element of Dave’s lyrics that add depth to their content. In actuality, it’s truly a combination of all those things and more. While the live concert is where the band thrives, there’s no overlooking their roster of studio albums. There’s no real timetable for their next release, but there is and admirable library to pick from today so let’s take a look at how they rate.

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LEONARD COHEN: I’M YOUR MAN – On Blu-ray February 7

leonard cohen toCelebrate the legendary singer-songwriter, Leonard Cohen, when the fascinating and critically acclaimed documentary, Leonard Cohen: I’m Your Man, arrives for the first time on Blu-ray™ (plus Digital HD) on February 7 from Lionsgate. Narrated by Cohen himself, the film features performances of Leonard Cohen songs by such luminary artists as U2, Rufus Wainwright, Nick Cave, Jarvis Cocker, Antony, Martha Wainwright, and Beth Orton, among others. Bonus features on this Blu-ray™ include exclusive performances not seen in the movie by Martha Wainwright, Perla Batalla, The Handsome Family, and Teddy Thompson, as well as a conversation with Leonard Cohen and audio commentary with the director!

a Continue reading ‘LEONARD COHEN: I’M YOUR MAN – On Blu-ray February 7′


Peter Gabriel – Growing Up Live + Still Growing Up Live & Unwrapped (Blu-ray Review)

Peter Gabriel - Growing Up Live + Still Growing Up Live & Unwrapped (Blu-ray Review)Man, now THIS is the kinda of live show that is sorely missing from this generation of artists!  Folks today think they can get away with throwing up a bunch of flashy lights and random explosions and still call it a live show!  Peter Gabriel is here to tell you that that concept just isn’t up to snuff!  The man actually attempts to visually recreate his songs while onstage.  Each and every song gets it’s own unique visual interpretation.  Whether it’s something as simple as synchronizing himself with a few musicians as they twirl to the beat of the music.  Or it’s something as grand as climbing inside a giant inflatable plastic bubble and rolling it around while the stage itself rotates at the same time!  Growing Up Live is simply a JOY to watch!

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The mighty Styx! Live in VEGAS! (Blu-ray Review)

The mighty Styx! Live in VEGAS! (Blu-ray Review)Filmed during the 2014 “Soundtrack of the Summer” tour, Styx hits the Las Vegas stage to bring us their signature sound!  Live at the Orleans Arena Las Vegas also includes behind the scenes interview with the band and their road crew about the in’s and out’s of life on the road.  We get everything from the joys of exploring a new city everyday, to the struggles that come with trying to remain connected to those back home.  So strap on your multi-necked guitar and find out if Styx still has what it takes to bring the house down!

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KISS Rocks Vegas (Blu-ray Review)

KISS Rocks Vegas Blu-ray ReviewOh yeah!  You can almost hear the fire-breathing front man, Gene “The Demon” Simmons, scream watch this once-in-a-lifetime event on the Blu-ray format.  And who am I to argue with his wisdom?  I’m a nobody in regards to Mr. Simmons, but one thing you can’t question is my undying discipleship to the legendary, finally in the Rock Hall of Fame, rock band KISS.  They have been like a religion in my life and my coverage of certain KISS related events here, here and here are a testament to my love and affinity to the four guys despite all the lineup shakeups over the year making them a resilient and indestructible force of nature).  And the following Blu-ray review here is no exception to the matter.  However, I am sad I missed out on all of this in 2014.  I was really hoping that KISS would of brought their residency back to The Joint at Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, but wish in one hand and you know what in the other.  Even though I missed it all, I have to look on the bright side of things.  I have one hell of a rock and roll souvenir now with Eagle Rock Entertainment’s KISS Rocks Vegas on Blu-ray. Continue reading ‘KISS Rocks Vegas (Blu-ray Review)’


Hater – Debut Album Reissue (Album Review)

Hater - Debut Album Reissue (Album Review)This album is the very definition of “Garage Rock”.  It’s played in a very loose and raggedy sort a way that has a lot of heart, but not much in the way of technical proficiency.  Hater totally encapsulates the very essence of what was happening during the early “Grunge” era of the 1990’s.  You can hear little bit’s of Soundgarden, Peal Jam, and Nirvana sprinkled throughout this album.  Which is to be expected with a group that features members of Monster Magnet, Mother Love Bone and Devilhead.  But that’s by no means to say that Hater is is just a rip off of more sophisticated acts.  I’m just trying to paint a picture of what the musical atmosphere was like when this album originally came out.  When you have a little background on a band as unconventional as Hater, it gives you a better appreciation for what they tried to accomplish musically.

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KISS Rocks Vegas on Blu-ray This August!

Kiss Rocks VegasOh yeah!  You can almost hear the fire-breathing front man scream.  Captured in the midst of their 40th Anniversary World Tour, the Rock and Roll Hall of Famers sonically shook Vegas during their residency at The Joint at Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in November 2014. This Sin City set sizzles with KISS classics from across their 44 album legacy: “Rock And Roll All Night,” “Detroit Rock City,” “Shout It Out Loud,” “Love Gun,” and more. As a bonus feature, Kiss Rocks Vegas includes a seven-song acoustic set. Punctuated with pyrotechnics galore, the film presents the fire, electricity, and one-of-a-kind rock experience that earned KISS over 100 million sales globally. Continue reading ‘KISS Rocks Vegas on Blu-ray This August!’


Fly: Songs Inspired by the film Eddie the Eagle (Soundtrack Review)

Fly: Songs Inspired by the film Eddie the Eagle (Soundtrack Review)I really can’t see how anyone could possibly listen to this album and NOT be compelled to take on the world!  It really doesn’t hold back on the positivity which makes it the best kind of music to wake up to on a Monday morning.  I’m sure there are some people who might find songs with such an up beat message to be pretty corny and unrelatable, considering all the ill’s of the world.  But that’s just when we need this kind of music the MOST!  It’s times like these when we need to be shaken out of our “doom and gloom” mind set and reminded that there are still things in this world worth believing in!

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The Witch (Soundtrack Review)

The Witch (Soundtrack Review)This movie focuses squarely on a family as they struggle to survive in the America’s during the 1600’s.  In a way it’s a lot like a stage play in that, save for the first few minutes, the cast consists solely of these 6 people.  As a rule of thumb, when writing film music for small or intimate scenes you should use minimal instruments and keep the melodies fairly simple or else you stand to disrupt the scene.  This score handles this with great elegance and care.  Even during the scenes of intensity where someone is frantically running through the woods, the music still keeps to it’s sparse elements which gives everything a sense of urgency.  If the music were large and bombastic, even during scenes of violence, it would make itself far too noticeable and distracting.

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Mondotees Weekly Vinyl Music Selections!

Mondotees Weekly Vinyl Music Selections!Mondotees.com has a wide selection of exclusive Posters, Music, and original art that would make even the most casual collector of pop-culture salivate at the chance to get their mits on these great items!  Here are a few of Mondo’s top Vinyl soundtrack choices that are currently shipping and available for pre-order!


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Star Trek 2: The Wrath of Kahn – Deluxe Vinyl re-issue available on Jan. 13th from Mondo.

Star Trek 2: The Wrath of Kahn - Deluxe Vinyl re-issue available on Jan. 13th from Mondo.From “Mondo” comes the original score for the classic film “Star Trek 2: The Wrath of Kahn” composed by James Horner.  This deluxe re-issue is pressed on 180 Gram 2XLP Mutara Nebula colored Vinyl, features breathtaking original artwork by Matt Taylor, exclusive liner notes by Devin Faraci, and has been remastered for Vinyl by James Plotkin.

The score for the first Star Trek film, “Star Trek: The Motion Picture”, was composed by Jerry Goldsmith.  So needless to say, Horner had some big shoes to fill when taking on it’s sequel.  Luckily for us, he wholeheartedly lived up to the challenge.  I have always been a huge fan of the late great James Horner.  You’ve probably heard his music from James Cameron’s “Aliens” in a bunch of movie trailers, or his unforgettable themes from the box office juggernaut “Titanic”.  But my personal favorite, hands down, has to be his score for the Don Bluth animated film “The Land Before Time”.  Maybe I saw it at JUST the right moment when I was a kid, but that music really knows EXACTLY how to tug on your heart strings.  “Wrath of Kahn” is no different.  Having one of the most heart breaking scenes in Star Trek history, this Vinyl release is a must have for any self respecting Trekkie or Trekker. Continue reading ‘Star Trek 2: The Wrath of Kahn – Deluxe Vinyl re-issue available on Jan. 13th from Mondo.’