Thursday, September 21, 2017

AMPED™ FEATURED ALBUM OF THE WEEK: JON LANGFORD/FOUR LOST SOULS


JON LANGFORD's
FOUR LOST SOULS

9.22.17


Jon Langford is a rarity in the music business. I can’t think of another artist that can be called a pioneer of British Post-Punk (with The Mekons and The Three Johns) AND a beloved Americana singer/songwriter.  But don’t misunderstand the man: this is NOT a case of an artist changing musical styles to chase fame and fortune! In fact, one can find traces of the American musical landscape in the early Mekons releases although they are buried amongst the many shadows that the band were prone to throw during their inspiring career. Over the years, Langford traveled many different musical roads, all of which lead to the glory that is FOUR LOST SOULS.

Friday, September 15, 2017

ODESZA: An EXCLUSIVE Q&A!



A MOMENT APART:

An EXCLUSIVE Q&A with 
ODESZA’s Harrison Mills


STEPHEN SPAZ SCHNEE: A MOMENT APART has just been released.  How are you feeling about the album and the reaction you’ve had so far?
HARRISON MILLS: This album represents the next chapter of our project.  We’ve wanted for so long to push our sound and mature as musicians.  With A MOMENT APART we’ve accomplished a denser, more cinematic sound that incorporates a lot of organic, symphonic instruments. We’ve always considered ourselves an album band, so it’s hard to give people a song out of context, and even harder to choose those singles.  The advance releases cover a lot of styles and genres, so it’s been interesting to see listeners kind of pick and choose their favorites.  We’re excited for people to be able to listen to the album in full – the narrative of the album gives a lot of context to those songs.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

AMPED™ FEATURED ALBUM OF THE WEEK: BRUCE COCKBURN/BONE ON BONE

BRUCE COCKBURN

BONE ON BONE

9.15.17

BONE ON BONE is the highly anticipated 2017 album from Canadian singer/songwriter Bruce Cockburn. The album is his first in six years and is the follow-up to 2011’s SMALL SOURCE OF COMFORT. His 25th studio album overall, BONE ON BONE finds Bruce Cockburn at ease as a musician but ill at ease with the world. For those familiar with Cockburn’s work over the years, this may seem like nothing new. However, BONE ON BONE finds Bruce at the top of his game. And for an artist that has been releasing albums for nearly 50 years, this is quite a feat.  Mixing Folk and Blues, the album is warm, intimate and filled with songs that are destined to become Cockburn classics. Amongst the Folk Blues stomp of songs like “States I’m In” (the first single) and “Café Society” is “Forty Years In The Wilderness”, one of the loveliest songs he’s ever written.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

MTUME/Prime Time: The Epic Anthology reviewed!








Mtume

Call them R&B, Funk or Soul - it doesn’t matter.  What matters is that you still remember their name.

Best known for the hit “Juicy Fruit,” Mtume put the fun in Funk!  Their output straddled the line between Funkadelic/Parliament-inspired grooves and smooth and sexy R&B, never straying away from their soulful roots. The oft-sampled outfit achieved more success in the UK and Europe than America, it seems, but there's no doubt that Mtume should have been bigger -much bigger - than they were. You can rediscover the band via PRIME TIME: THE EPIC ANTHOLOGY, a brand new two CD collection courtesy of Soul Music Records/Cherry Red.

Friday, September 8, 2017

An EXCLUSIVE Q&A with ANTIBALAS’ Martin Perna




WHERE THE GODS ARE IN PEACE:
An EXCLUSIVE Q&A with ANTIBALAS’ Martin Perna



STEPHEN SPAZ SCHNEE: WHERE THE GODS ARE IN PEACE is just about to be released.  How are you feeling about the way the album turned out and the reaction to it so far?
MARTIN PERNA: We are happy with the way the album turned out, or else we wouldn't have put it out. It was a lot of work and represents several years of effort working through some problems that would have sunk most other bands. We had some members graduate to other projects not long after our last record in 2012, and this album proves both to ourselves and people who listen to us that we have more juice than ever. 

An EXCLUSIVE Q&A with DEAN WAREHAM of LUNA


As Luna reassemble with their first new music in thirteen years, the group’s founder took time to discuss the band’s pair of simultaneous releases; an instrumental EP and an album of covers.

DAVE RAYBURN: With A SENTIMENTAL EDUCATION and A PLACE OF GREATER SAFETY you provide an outpouring of new music than Luna fans might not have been expecting.  Why did you opt for an album of covers and an EP of instrumentals for the band’s return to the studio?
DEAN WAREHAM: I know what Andy Warhol answered when asked why he was making short films instead of painting. “Because it’s easy.” Making covers is easier of course because you don’t have to write the songs. And ditto with instrumentals, I don’t have to write any lyrics (the hardest part). So I thought an album of covers would be a nice way for us to record together after 13 years apart. Also we’ve done a lot of covers over the years and people like them. Sean Eden insisted we should do something more, and that’s how we came to record the instrumentals. So it’s cool, we’ve got two things that we’ve never done before, and personally I think that’s more interesting to people than “oh, these dudes got together and wrote some new songs.”


Thursday, September 7, 2017

AMPED™ FEATURED ALBUM OF THE WEEK: CHARLIE PARR/DOG

     
CHARLIE PARR
DOG
9.8.17


     Singer/songwriter Charlie Parr has returned with an album that mixes his Folk roots with plenty of heart and soul. Although he may sometimes write as an observer, his songs put him square in the eye of the storm. Parr writes songs that are extremely personal yet universal at the same time.  Listening to DOG, you’ll stumble across people that you feel that you already know, places that you are sure you’ve been and feelings that you most definitely have experienced.  This is a world where both feet are firmly planted on the ground. You can feel the heat of the sun and smell the beer-soaked floorboards. This is an album that pulls no punches.  Life is hard and then you die but in between, there is light in the darkness. However, that light may be only fleeting at times. But that is understandable because Charlie experienced some truly dark moments before making the album.