Artist Review: frafri – Thank You For So Much, Sorry For So Little” LP

Review by: Justyn Brodsky

A lot of producers & creators showcase their best work through their musical visions and audio expressions through sound, especially when it comes to the instrumental aspect. frafri‘s 15-track LP Thanks For So Much, Sorry For So Little is a clear demonstration into the mind of exactly that – the thought process and execution of instrumental expression and the moods and structures that parallel the songwriting structures as a way to get into the mind of a creator.

And that’s the kind of LP frafri has put together, a record of many visceral moods, innovative beats, and the brilliant use of guitar sequences and synthesizers that really set the tone for each track. From subtle buildups, explosively climactic measures and anthemic melody choices throughout the album, each song delves into a form of expression that steers along the lines of ominous emotions, and feelings that are thought provoking.

And that’s one of my favorite parts about frafri‘s latest collection of tracks – the ambience and versatility that really sets this album apart from anything else within its caliber. But I don’t necessarily mean “experimental” when it comes to that particular term, because these songs are diligently put together and definitely brilliantly structured. They flow together like chapters in a book, and scream loudly with narratives even though this album doesn’t have. But the biggest component to this record is the creative use of instruments – from introverted guitar parts to a vast array of keys and synths providing the atmosphere. After listening to all 15-tracks in their entirety, you begin to draw the full picture in your mind. The full picture that this album delivers a full, flavorful sound with wholesome totality – and you find yourself resonating with every measure both musically, and visually.

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Artist Review: Bami – “Stream Of His Grace” EP

Review by: Justyn Brodsky

Captivatingly talented with her voice and spiritually authentic in her message, rising Gospel artist Bami brings us on a modernized journey into the realms of uplifting our Faith in God with her much awaited versatile new EP Streaming Of His Grace.

Bami‘s sound is explosive, multifaceted and graciously fun with a ton of multi-genre additives and flavorful beats on this 4-track record. Her electronically-infused sound combines an array of funky riffs, hypnotic jazzy tempos and a salsa/tropical and Latin edge that brings out her voice very effectively and tastefully. Her mid-ranged voice tackles very spiritual content about her Faith in the Lord and really brings a new and fresh approach to the legacy of Gospel music with her compellingly dynamic production and highly intricate song structures.

Delving into the songs themselves, the musicianship factors are unwavering. The rhythmic tempos are extremely neat and tidy and grasp onto composition techniques reminiscent of many jazz and fusion eras, but that’s just one of many components. Her Pop elements also add to the intuitive song structures and really helps carry Bami‘s voice in a way that is front and center, with very tasteful melodies in her vocal approach that resonate perfectly with the bluesy rhythms and chord progressions. This is a modern day triumph of Gospel music that could easily take on a life of its own, and really showcases an amazing range of production techniques and songwriting structures that are rare in Gospel music, if not new altogether.

The most striking part of Streaming Of His Grace is the originality. The record does not emulate any other artist and Bami really delves into a signature sound that is in her own right. You can draw comparisons to her if you think hard enough, but there’s no question that her approach in Gospel is anything but ordinary. If you’re looking for a spiritual record that is also musically fascinating and compelling, then Streaming Of His Grace will absolutely blow your mind.

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Press Release: Lucy Morningstar Slated To Release Her Self-Titled EP In Early 2019

Article by: Justyn Brodsky

When it comes to tailoring her craft and musical visions in very influential ways, very few artists grab your attention the way Lucy Morningstar does. Presenting a signature world sound with eclectic elements of Pop, Folk and Alt-Indie Rock, Lucy rounded up a team of prominent musicians to record a 5-track EP that is captivatingly catchy, lyrically uplifting, and really showcases her multifaceted songwriting style with many angles.

Delving into her craft to reflect personal positive vibes and experiences, the songs on this new record are influenced by her time spent living in Maui, Hawaii, where she embraced nature and the profound impact the island life has had on her. The lyrics and melodies touch on channeling spiritual evolution through gratitude, consciousness and helping one another achieve their dreams. The songs she writes are inspired by her experiences overcoming fear and breaking through boundaries to continue on the path of her destiny. This new music is also fueled by the freedom of traveling, doing what she loves, and seeing how we as people can contribute to the world around us by being ourselves and raising one’s vibration. It’s a record that is personal, and inspires to be inspired.

Lucy‘s chord progressions are smooth, sensual and parallel perfectly with her mid-ranged vocals and diligent melody structures. The full, wholesome sound from her band really captures the glow of each song and showcases her lyrical story-telling approaches very effectively. These tracks have many different genre elements as well, and have something for everyone.

For this EP, it’s no doubt that Lucy recruited some world renowned musicians. The songs were produced by John Avila (Oingo Boingo) who also plays bass on the album, plus Scott Page (Pink Floyd, Supertramp, Toto) on Saxophone, Anthony Logerfo (Promise of the Real) on drums, Alexander Burke (Save Ferris, Billy Ray Cyrus) on keys, and Rich Fisanick on lead guitar. The EP is slated for release is early 2019 and will be available on all digital music retailers and streaming platforms. Keep up with Lucy Morningstar and her band by connecting with her below, as an official announcement will be made for the record’s release date.

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Artist Review: Montaz – “Da Underground” Mixtape

Review by: Justyn Brodsky

It’s extremely rare that an artist with a captivating lyrical style comes out swinging the way Montaz does on his newest mixtape Da Underground.

Montaz is not your typical rapper, he’s a naturally gifted writer as well with his own signature sound and stylization. Embracing a style that touches on old school Rap and spoken word, Montaz‘s lyrical flow emphasizes very compelling lyrical narratives that resonate in a way that just puts you at the edge of your seat and keeps you listening. While taking a more subtle vocal approach that is more clear and crisp, it doesn’t take away from the dynamically executed content that he puts together throughout every bar and measure.

This mixtape has an array of beat structures that are ominous, theatrical and impressively versatile. From haunting rhythms and bass droppers that really put an edge to his sound, Da Underground explores many different beat methods that allows Montaz to showcase every angle of his lyrical style. The mixtape is very charismatic and identifiable in many ways, but always has that signature touch that he puts on each song no matter what approach is taken. And it’s that type of consistency that really makes Da Underground the gem that it really is. It ties together a brilliant chemistry of many ingredients and additives that Montaz makes use of in all the right places. And the ominously haunting style is very visceral and hypnotizing, especially when played in its entirety.

Da Underground touches on several musicianship factors today’s contemporary Hip Hop doesn’t, and diligently stands out in its own way that really gives Montaz his own sound that is both original and relatable. This is a record to listen to before the year is out, or perhaps make it your new year’s resolution. Either way, Da Underground is a mixtape with its own flavors and really leaves you completely impressed in the end. And on top of being an artist, Montaz would also be a successful ghostwriter as well. This is the guy you want involved in your writing process, he brings new elements to the table that could make an enormous impact on the future of Hip Hop.

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Artist Review: Fiction Dogs – “Single Sunday” LP

Review by: Justyn Brodsky

Roaring guitar riffs, a pounding rhythm section and gritty, catchy vocal melodies make for a tasty concoction with power trio Fiction Dogs‘ newest album Single Sunday. A 6-track record of anthemic tunes with a very versatile signature sound and unwavering musicianship factors that keep you on the edge of your seat.

With the start of their opening number “Let’s Pretend”, the band comes out swinging with high-gain guitar progressions and unrelenting energy that will easily blow the roof off every house in your neighborhood. This is a track where if Black Sabbath started a 90s punk band, this would likely be the result. And it doesn’t disappoint. What’s great about this record (and band) is the authentic production value. There are no tricks, no post production theatrics, no auto-tune. These dudes keep it real by plugging in, playing, and relying on actual good songwriting to carry the weight for them. A rarity among today’s music realm.

Another component that makes this album a gem is the band’s multifaceted take on Rock music. They have a signature style, but showcase many different angles of their craft. Tracks like “Two Times Today” and “Like God” really delve into the trio’s true core, and prove that quality songwriting structures and vocal melody choices are high on their priority list; and that their versatile take on Rock-infused music can come in different forms. These are charming tunes without the unnecessary noise or diversionary tactics from the actual talent. These guys keep it 100% real.

The best part about this album is the staying power and classic status – it’s a record that has the ability to stay with you even after it’s over, and leaves you with good vibes all around. Kinda like the feeling of reaching the end of the rollercoaster – you just wanna get right back on. It’s an album that has a classic feel, and has songs you can come back to time and time again without skipping over one track. Single Sunday is a stroke of genius for the Rock genre, and brings us a throwback feeling of the 80s, 90s, as well as today’s better Rock sensibilities.

About the album:

The band recently reunited when Terrance McAbee rejoined Michael Williams and Craig Florio back in Florida after a year exploring the west coast. The group never stopped working while Terrance was away, recording most of the new album during a ‘Single Sunday’ when the three connected for an all day, all night session. The new project is a half-album featuring music written by all three members with Craig singing and playing the drums, while Terrance and Mike play guitars and bass. The second half of the album is nearly complete, but growing as the band member/roommates keep writing and falling in love with new songs. It can be easy to hear the Springsteen and Pearl Jam influences; however, the guys will just as often play Van Morrison or Eminem. The entire project was recorded at Maple Studio in Clearwater, Florida with help from Pro Tools, Gibson and Fender. 2019 will be a busy year primarily focused on the west coast of Florida and a growing digital presence. ‘Fun songs about sad stuff’ is the band’s approach, embedding an underlying sense of anguish in the subtext of the lyrics, with uplifting melodies and poetic word play.

“Single Sunday” is currently available on Spotify and other digital music retailers and streaming platforms. If this is the first time discovering Fiction Dogs, then you’ll be thanking us later. You’ll be more than happy you gave this album a listen.

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Artist Review: SuZen Releases Her Ambient And Inspirationally Moving Spoken Word Anthem “Jiva Is Shiva (The Mantra Mix)”

Review by: Justyn Brodsky

Inspirational, motivational and spiritually anthemic, UK-based Yoga Chant & Spoken Word artist SuZen projects her words into insatiable passion and magical solace with her newest single “Jiva Is Shiva (The Mantra Mix)”.

Presented as the opening track of her 7-track album, this track is a vocal demonstration of visceral feelings, spiritual realms and unwavering essence of self. SuZen, real name Susan Ni Rahilly, is renowned as a Yoga and Meditation teacher and author, and considers herself “trans-genre”: a multi-dimensional teacher. She is also regarded as a Master in India. And this track is a very clear demonstration of her authentic talent and ability to showcase her expertise through the expression of music, and it’s very effective and nostalgic when you clear your mind and let her voice guide you.

This track is one of her seven spiritual laws of Yoga, and is designated for men between the ages of 25 and 40, most specifically during their drive time; a time they can get space and personal time to think. And it resonates beautifully with its artistic merit and SuZen‘s craft. It’s a track that is ambient, climactic and very multifaceted in its content and parallels perfectly with its production value. Her voice is an angelic and hypnotic presence and really leads your body and mind to a deeper inner place of relaxation, resolution and clarity. The multifaceted nature of the track is very natural and versatile; it really delves into the depth of SuZen‘s character, as well as your own. And that’s one of the most compelling components of “Jiva Is Shiva” – its ability to connect with the listener and bring them to a spiritual resolution.

The track was released on December 4th, and is currently available on several digital music retailers and streaming platforms. It’s an enchanting track that reflects SuZen‘s 25 years as a Yoga Teacher, specialist, and artist in her own right. You’ll never hear another one like her.

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Artist Review: Vladimir Sterzer – “Black Mirrors” LP

Review by: Justyn Brodsky

With beautiful piano landscapes and visceral measures in every track, Vladimir Sterzer brings us on a musical journey of emotions, ambience, and a surreal atmosphere with his album Black Mirrors.

Comprised of 16 tracks that are ominously dark and brilliantly melodic, Black Mirrors is just as thought provoking as it is peaceful. Each song is written and performed with absolute precision and encompasses raw emotion that parallels with the top notch production value. It’s an unwavering story-telling album that can mean something different to each person that listens, and is instrumentally dynamic as it is simple at times, though always appropriate.

Vladimir brings us more than just a collection of songs with this album, he brings us anthems, compositions of glistening textures and unforgettable piano swells that grab your attention from the very beginning. It’s an album you feel, one that you can listen to no matter the moods that are involved. It’s an album that allows you to escape the clutches of personal conflict and really release your anxiety.

Black Mirrors is an album that really puts a modern spin on some of the most prominent classical music over many generations and musical eras. It’s a rare treat and an absolute gem in its own right; and really showcases the brilliance of Vladimir‘s songwriting and overall signature sound. There is endless beauty in this album, no matter how you listen to it. And you’ll find yourself coming back to these tracks time and time again; as they are truly timeless compositions.

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