Friday, February 10, 2017

THE URBAN VOODOO MACHINE is here... and there's nothing you can do about it!

If you ever want to know what Tom Waits sounds like waking up  - with a hangover  - in a ditch just outside New Orleans wearing a clown's wig and clutching a bottle of bourbon wrapped in a McDonalds bag, then you've come to the right place.

The Urban Voodoo Machine certainly sounds like that, only a bit more intense.

RIGHT SAID FRED: Giving their fans EXACTLY what they want!


Right Said Fred may be considered a ‘one hit wonder’ in the U.S., but I’m here to tell you that they are much more than that. Their worldwide hit “I’m Too Sexy” has become a slice of Pop Culture and is still used in advertisements, films and TV shows. The mere mention of the song title will inspire people to spontaneously sing a line or two out loud no matter who else is around. However, as I once wrote over at “If you've never heard anything by Right Said Fred apart from 'I'm Too Sexy,' then you are missing out on one of the best dance-pop bands of this generation. To base your opinion of the band on that one song is like judging The Beatles' entire catalog on a song like ‘Yellow Submarine.’ Sure, it's fun and catchy, but there is so much more to the band than that one piece of pop fluff.” In other words, if you haven’t heard anything else by RSF, then it is time to change that.

Thursday, February 9, 2017



Introducing The Band: MOD HIPPIE




This time, it’s personal.

Full disclosure:
1. Mod Hippie main man Doug McGuire is a longtime friend – his first words to me 40 years ago were, “I don’t like little brothers.”
2. He has played with my brother Mike Schnee on and off for many years – The Leeks and Volkwood Ghost (who put out a pair of albums in the '90s) are just two of the bands they were both members of.
3. I collaborated with Doug on one track featured on BIG WOW.

     With all of that being said, my closeness to this project will certainly make people think I’m being biased when I say that Mod Hippie’s sophomore album, BIG WOW, is one of the best albums of 2017. So, let’s get one thing perfectly clear: from a musical standpoint, I’m much more critical of friends’ music than I am of music created by people I’ve never met. I pretty much figure that if they hang out with me, they can’t be as talented as “Timmy Tagalong” from Australia or wherever.  Boy, was I wrong.  Doug McGuire started out as a good songwriter 30+ years ago and has only gotten better over time. When the first Mod Hippie album – TOMORROW THEN – was released in 2015, I was more than impressed. Even the fact that he used a song with my worst lyrics ever did not sour my opinion of that album.  When he began working on BIG WOW in 2016, I was anxiously awaiting the results. What I was not expecting was something far more cohesive, melodic and powerful. 

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Introducing The Band: RAY MASON

Introducing The Band: 

(Photo courtesy of Brandi Ediss Photography)

     There’s a hidden treasure in Haydenville, Massachusetts…  and his name is Ray Mason.  He’s been an active musician on the scene for more years than many of us have been alive, releasing solo albums as well as serving time as one-half of Americana duo Lonesome Brothers (with Jim Armenti).  Ray plays no-nonsense Rock ‘n’ Roll the way it should be played: fresh, exciting and littered with musical references  from practically every genre you can think of. When throwing on a Ray Mason album for the first time, don’t be surprised if you hear a sad and sorrowful Country crier followed by a prickly rocker with a Punk edge to it. His music references everyone from Robert Johnson to The Beatles. His early influences can be found on records released by labels like Motown and Stax but don’t be surprised to find some inspiration from the Stiff and Chiswick archives as well.  The best way to describe Ray’s sound is this: imagine Neil Young colliding with Nick Lowe while fronting NRBQ and performing songs telepathically channeled from David Lindley’s sideburns.  If you are thoroughly confused, have no fear.  Describing Ray’s charm is difficult. However, enjoying this unpretentious, humble and extremely talented man’s music is a much easier.

NIGHT RANGER/Don't Let Up: Available March 24, 2017!


Available 3.24.17

Night Ranger truly epitomizes the sound of the 80's, while at the same time transcending it. Since their reunion in 1996, they have brought their guitar heavy, melodic brand of hard rock into the 21st century with their unparalleled talent, energy, and creativity.

FIREWIND/immortals: Official EPK!

Firewind, the band formed by Greek guitarist Gus G (also known for his work with Ozzy Osbourne), has just released their finest album yet: IMMORTALS. The album features the return of vocalist Henning Basse. The album marks the first time Firewind used an outside co-producer, working with Dennis Ward (Unisonic, Pink Cream 69), who not only engineered, mixed and mastered the album, but also co-wrote it together with Gus G.