Artist Review: MiZ – “A Year Ago Today” LP

Review by: Justyn Brodsky

Acoustic, electric and all around eclectic, we get a fun and heartfelt catalogue of multifaceted tracks from Americana/Roots Rock recording artist MiZ‘s newest album A Year Ago Today.

MiZ is definitely no stranger to the industry. He’s performed his music on a vast array of tours and has opened up for industry heavyweights like Jason Isbell, Blues Traveler, The Wallflowers, Kenny Wayne Shepherd and a slew of others. And is also a two time winner of the Tri-State Indie Award for “Acoustic Artist Of The Year”. Now continuing his career after the well received success of his debut album, MiZ has emerged from the studio with his second studio album A Year Ago Today, and proves to be a very diligently crafted follow up record with all the goods.

Staying true to his signature sound of blissful guitar textures, dynamic melody placements and tasty vocal harmonies, MiZ delivers up an album of heartfelt catchiness that sings to your soul and sticks in your head. Each track is intelligently pieced together, has flavorful additives and delves into a fresh Americana sound with elements of Folk and served up with a classic Roots Rock style. All the while maintaining modern production value and musicianship factors that makes A Year Ago Today a very relevant record for today’s mainstream market.

From well blended acoustic guitar progressions, keyboard melodies to funky fiddles gliding through each measure with a tight rhythm section, MiZ‘s versatile vocal range is showcased very effectively and really stands out as a true original. Each song really shows the facets of his song writing and his lyrical content with catchy vocal melodies are a collective standout on this album. There is something for everyone on this record.

Another great component is the diversity of the tracks. It provides a sound that shares equal parts originality and familiarity, where you get something different from each song but know it’s coming from the same artist. And the attentiveness to the detail of MiZ‘s songwriting is one of the major things that makes A Year Ago Today the gem that it really is.

This is a masterful album, and if this is your first time discovering MiZ, you’ll be glad you did. It’s the type of album that’ll give you intrigue, and really entice you to look deeper into MiZ‘s music career and previous records. His true talent glows in this album, and it’s made apparent from start to finish.

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Press Release: Swedish Indie-Pop Duo Kaiak Release Official Song for FIS Cross-Country World Cup 2019

Article by: Justyn Brodsky

Indie-Pop Swedish duo Kaiak come out swinging for 2019 with their smash single “Feel The High”, which has been selected for 2019’s FIS Cross-Country World Cup in Ulricehamn, Sweden.

The duo, known for making music inspired by nature, coffee and friendships, bring their collective talent to the forefront in this single with extremely impressive vocal ranges, powerful leads and elite production value that makes this song an absolute gem. Both voices play a pivotal role in this song, resonate beautifully and really live up to the song’s title “Feel The High”.

Kaiak has a Power-Pop and Indie driven signature sound that easily fits with today’s realm of influential artists and mainstream chart toppers. From melodically soaring vocals, dynamic song structures and the brilliant combination of digital mastering techniques with every instrument, Kaiak brings forth an unwavering amount of likability factors to this single and I can definitely see why this song was chosen for the World Cup.

The biggest standout is the vocal usage – the chorus-like layering and the very well placed melodies that make this song dangerously catchy. Another component is the versatility and originality. The band concocts a sound that is very distinctive between sharing elements of both Rock and electronic textures, which creates a very tasty mix. And it’s very apparent that this song was crafted with precision and tightness. It just comes together beautifully and makes their whole sound very anthemic and captivating.

“Feel The High” is definitely a song you feel. One that is really on that next-level nexus. And you’ll definitely hear the authenticity and raw emotion of this song when you take a listen yourself. You’ll be amazed at how flavorful and fulfilling this song is.

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Press Release: Serbia’s Andrej Slated To Release His Debut Album In 2019

Article by: Justyn Brodsky

It was none other than The Beatles who inspired Andrej to start making music. Growing up in a family of musicians, he was soon bound to start his music career.

From 2004 to 2010, Andrej formed, sang lead vocals and played in two bands (‘The Spiders’ and ‘Mighty Fusion’). By the time he turned 18, he had already toured the country, played live shows and gained invaluable experience in rock & roll lifestyle. Even though the bands mostly didn’t perform their own songs, Andrej has been

consistently composing and writing music ever since he was an early pre-teenage kid that had only been able to play a limited amount of chords on his entry-level acoustic guitar. Songs like ‘Never Gonna Beg for Love’, ‘Kid of Celebrity’, ‘No Girl Like You’ and ‘Enjoy The Moment‘ were made in that period. ‘Never Gonna Beg for Love’ was featured on many radio stations, and ‘Kid of Celebrity’ won the author- song competition, but besides that, the songs yielded no major success.

September 2017 was a turning point for Andrej, as that’s when he was hired by an Estonian author and lyricist Anni Pea to compose a pop/ rock tune, a result of which is a song called ‘It’s My Day’, a pop/rock track infused with country elements. Anni and Andrej soon discovered that their creative synergy, Anni’s of making enticing lyrics, and Andrej‘s of producing appealing tunes, is likely to generate enjoyable results! So they continued working together, up to this day.

In August 2018, the song ‘Love Defined‘ was released. A funky, pop/rock song confirmed that a modern take on traditional genres such as rock and funk is widely enjoyed by new and upcoming audiences. Currently, Andrej is collaborating with Anni on his first album, scheduled to be released in 2019. He is also engaged in several other music production projects.

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Press Release: Hannah’s Yard Releases New Single “With You All The Way” November 2nd

Article by: Justyn Brodsky

At the start of 2018, BBC Introducing-spotted and BBCR2-played musical collective Hannah’s Yard announced ‘all sorts of new music arriving throughout the year!’. Following on from their 2017 debut album of ‘acoustic pop’, aptly entitled “Beginnings”, Hannah’s Yard recently released a four-track EP of understated covers.

Reflections’, showcasing the incredible voice of lead singer Hannah Layton Turner, is already gaining strong traction in the world of streaming, with over 200,000 streams on Spotify and Apple Music in a matter of weeks.

Remaining true to their word, the collective, fronted by the 22 year old vocalist, are set to release a brand new song.

Co-written by Hannah, along with musical partners Barnaby Pinny and James Reader, ‘With You All The Way’ sees members of the collective reach for their electric instruments for the first time.

This up-tempo, feel-good song sees all in the Yard having fun. Supporting Hannah’s lush upfront vocals are notably Guitarist Tim Cansfield’s [Bee Gees] pocketed electric and the bass line of Michael Curtis Ruiz [Kylie] – one of the funkiest musical journeys in itself. With recent news of social media’s indirect promotion of ‘self-consciousness’ rather than ‘self-confidence’, the song’s lyrical message shouts that we need to be there for each other. Be it

family, friends, teachers, carers, work colleagues…we need to gather around those that need support…nobody should feel alone.

Hannah herself comments:

“We’ve had so much fun writing & recording ‘With You All The Way’. It’s a little different to what we’ve released in the past but I absolutely love how it’s turned out. Not only is it seriously catchy, it has such a lovely relatable message of ‘togetherness’ behind it – a little bit of fun & positivity for you to enjoy…I’m so excited for everyone to hear it!”.

and there’s more new music from Hannah’s Yard on its way towards the end of the year!

Credits

Hannah Layton Turner – Lead & Backing Vocals

Plamina Dimova – Backing Vocals

Barnaby Pinny – Backing Vocals

James Reader – Piano/Keyboards/Additional Programming

Tim Cansfield – Electric & Acoustic Guitars

Michael Curtis Ruiz – Electric Bass

Jim Fleeman – Drums

Musical arrangement by James Reader

Engineered & produced by James Reader & Barnaby Pinny at Superphonix Studios, Olney Radio mix by Neros

Mastered by Ryan Smith at Sterling Sound, USA

Contacts

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Artist Review: Wayland – “She Lights It Up” Single

Review by: Justyn Brodsky

Captivating and soul shaking, Wayland‘s eclectic Rock ballad “She Lights It Up” will light up your life and glow you fluorescent.

“…She Lights It uuuuup…” will never get out of your head again from the very first listen of this anthem by acclaimed rockers Wayland. From having one of their anchor singles go viral, hitting the Top 10 on the iTunes Charts and relentless touring for over half a decade, this quartet of multifaceted musicians prove that brilliant songwriting and mastering your craft has its payoffs in epic proportions when you truly have what it takes.

Adding to their legacy of hit songs, “She Lights It Up” is a piano-led ballad with possibly one of the catchiest vocal melodies in any chorus you could ever hear. And that isn’t to be taken lightly. With an emotionally supercharged piano progression, soaring lead vocals doused with beautiful Country-style harmonies and instrumental additives that include steel guitars and a mandolin, this song truly hits it out of the park.

This is a ballad the way it was meant to be written, and it shows facets of each member of the band’s contributing factors when you especially watch the in-studio themed music video. The immaculate vocal range and melody placements by singer Mitch Arnold are a standout of its own, and he really puts his heart into this track with several angles of his voice being showcased throughout the song, and it’s quite the amazement to behold. Meanwhile the band fills everything else in beautifully with not only their respective progressions and rhythm parts, but their textures as well to give this song every magical touch that it needs. And it all falls into place perfectly. Seriously, it doesn’t get much better than this when it comes to perfecting a song to its absolute potential.

One thing you’ll definitely take note of is Mitch Arnold’s vocal range and overall performance in this song. The authentic realness of his voice and the band that brings it all out in its full glory is something very rare in today’s era of post production theatrics and unnecessary noise. It’s the biggest breath of fresh air you’ll feel in quite some time.

We can’t recommend this song highly enough. If this is your first time discovering Wayland, then you’ll be an instant fan after one listen of this track.

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Artist Review: Randall Fowler – “The Recipe” EP

Review by: Justyn Brodsky

It’s rare that you discover an artist that is so good, that you have to listen to the music twice to fully embrace what you just heard. That’s the sensation you get when listening to Randall Fowler‘s newest hybrid Country-Rock EP The Recipe.

“A little bit o’ you, a little bit ‘o me, baby that’s the recipe” sings Fowler on the self-titled track of the EP. And that’s exactly what his songs are all about – the recipe. Something that is evident and appropriately titled, with every component of each song in its rightful place where it can deliver the most impact.

Emerging from the Charleston music scene in South Carolina, Randall Fowler, a musician since childhood, combines a strong Country Rock style with Pop and R&B additives that encompass familiar vibes and an innovative modern feel. His vocal range and control is something to behold all on its own, but combined with his ability to write and compose eclectic and intelligently crafted songs is what makes him the gem he really is. And The Recipe demonstrates this perfectly.

The precision of the EP carries significant weight with the production value and lends a hand at putting a modern twist to a very favorable genre in a very versatile way. With smooth acoustic guitar progressions and textures mixed with multifaceted EDM sensibilities, The Recipe delivers up a sound you’ve never quite heard before. It has incredible performance value, freshly innovative ideas, and really showcases Fowler in the most effective way possible. And that’s one of the greatest parts about this record – Fowler‘s authenticity and unwavering talent is at the forefront and is shown in many angles. You’ll have to hear it to believe it – and you’ll be glad you did.

Every track offers up something new, but stays true to a signature sound you’ll come to recognize. The Recipe is currently available on all digital music retailers and streaming platforms. You’ll be very glad we pointed you in Fowler‘s direction, and you’ll definitely thank us later.

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Artist Review: The Blankz – “(It’s A) Breakdown” Single

Review by: Justyn Brodsky

Thrusting back to the good old days when the Vans Warped Tour actually booked real punk rock bands, The Blankz prove with their new single “(It’s A Breakdown)” that punk is not dead, and never was in the first place.

If NOFX and Pennywise had a baby, The Blankz would be a definite DNA match. But even with influences like that, this band’s driven and powerful punk rock approach hones a craft that is in their own right and really gives punk fans a breath of fresh air; as well as a reminder that one of the best genres of music is still alive and kicking even more than before.

With a catchy synth part that perfectly parallels the melodic verses, the crunchy guitar chugs and tight rhythm section really kicks this track into overdrive and leads a hook that’ll stick like glue in your head even after the song is over. It has great power chord progressions with exceptional vocal melody arrangements that punk rock is known for, and really gives a nod to the 90s to early 2000s era of bands from Epitaph and Fat Wreck Chords in particular.

Another notable quality about this single is the band’s authenticity – where excellent songwriting is high on the priority list and doesn’t require post-production noise or smoke screens to keep the listener distracted from a mediocre song. There are no one-trick-pony methods or theatrics at all, just an in-your-face punk song with that edge-of-your-dear feeling that is rare in today’s era of music.

For any fan of true punk rock, “(It’s A) Breakdown” is an absolute must-listen in every way. It’s that sound you’ve been yearning for, a reminder that true punk rock exists, and that its legacy will continue no matter what garbage is being shoved down everyone’s throats on mainstream radio. If punk is your thing, then The Blankz will become one of your new instant-favorites. You’ll be glad you discovered them.

The single is currently available on all digital music retailers and streaming platforms. Be sure to pick up a copy and experience “(It’s A) Breakdown” for yourself!

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