Artist Review: The Jive Aces – “Diggin’ The Roots Volume 1 & 2” LPs

Review by: Justyn Brodsky

Don’t just go back to your roots – dig them!

We’ve heard a lot of today’s takes on classic songs from many new age contemporary artists, as well as tribute bands and cover artists putting their own spin on yesterday’s hits from many calibers of genres with a fresh additive or two. Some do it well, some fall flat, and then there’s the few and far between gem that comes out swinging with the charms of both yesterday’s and today’s most influential eras wrapped up into one super tight package. That, my friends, is The Jive Aces.

This UK-based band are definitely not a bunch of randies by any means. Renowned worldwide for their high-energy spectacular showmanship, this elite group has garnered an enormous following from a combination of acclaims including their viral video for the track “Bring Me Sunshine” and for also being the first live band to reach the final rounds of “Britain’s Got Talent”. Since then, The Jive Aces have firmly established themselves as the UK’s No.1 Jive & Swing band, and show no indication of slowing down their momentum anytime soon.

So with a résumé like that, you know there has to be something of theirs worth putting on your playlist. And their 2-Volume LPs Diggin’ The Roots are shining examples of their tightly knit signature sound of songs we’ve all come to know and love over many, many years. Boasting into today’s production value while maintaining that old school influential charm, we get a more than solid performance on both records comprised of eclectically professional musicians that absolutely own their roles on every track to deliver a sound that not only resonates with the classic each song became long ago, but with a whole new realm of energy and technique that gets us to appreciate them all over again in a whole new way, in a whole new era.

Diggin’ The Roots is exactly as advertised. They are tracks that have brought on endless inspiration and appreciation among a majority of today’s prominent artists and are the roots to their stories. On The Jive Aces Volume 1 record, RockinRhythm & Blues, we get a tastefully blended album of 13 tracks with many flavorful additives. Classic tunes on Volume 1 include smash hits “Jump, Jive & Wail”, “Feelin’ Happy”, “I Want You To Be My Baby”, and many others of the same caliber. Led by lead vocalist Ian Clarkson, who also takes up roles on trumpet and ukulele, his clean and vibrant voice in the forefront of every song really solidifies the band’s approach. The right rhythm section really paves the way for the rest of the band, and really puts the proper backing behind Clarkson’s effective vocal takes and melody placements. With hot piano leads, an anthemic brass section and funky fiddles added to the mix, this fresh look at some of our favorite Rockin’ Rhythm & Blues tracks will definitely get you up off of your feet and own the dance floor.

On their Volume 2 record, Hot Jazz, we get the same Jive Aces vibe with their tight grasp on 13 more classic tunes that combine equal parts originality and familiarity, just like Volume 1. Staying true to form like the previous chapter of this 2-part release, we get an instrumentally versatile execution of fan favorites from the classic Jazz era that includes “Jeepers Creepers”, “On The Sunny Side Of The Street” and “It’s Been A Long, Long Time“. Both of these records absolutely compliment each other and bring a brand new timeless edge to every perfected measure. The showmanship factors are undeniable and one thing that screams from these releases are the words “INCREDIBLE LIVE SHOW”. Diggin’ The Roots really brings out each member’s musicianship abilities and when put together, collectively bring out a stick dynamite just ready to go off at every event they play. And their devoted fan base and successful career milestones reflect that. But one of the most notable things about The Jive Aces is their authenticity – there is no wacky autotune, no oversaturated production techniques, and absolutely no cheat methods whatsoever being used. This band can produce live exactly what they do in the studio, which is a rare thing in today’s digital age of music.

The Jive Aces are the breath of fresh air you’ve been needing for a long time. They are a standout of their caliber, and once you take a listen to both volumes of Diggin’ The Roots, you’ll see and hear exactly why they are the UK’s number 1 Jive & Swing band.

Connect with The Jive Aces:

•Link to Volume 1: http://jiveaces.com/album/518834/diggin-the-roots-vol-1-rockin-rhythm-blues

•Link to Volume 2: http://jiveaces.com/album/518835/diggin-the-roots-vol-2-hot-jazz

•Official Website: http://www.jiveaces.com

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Artist Review: Katie Veltri – “3rd & Fairfax” Single

Review by: Justyn Brodsky

Taking a very simplistic yet nostalgic approach, acclaimed singer/songwriter Katie Veltri has put an anthemic spin with her brand new single, “3rd & Fairfax”.

Katie is no novice-leveled musical dabbler. From releasing a well received full length album this past year and also tackling legendary covers like John Lennon’s “Imagine” and others, Katie has independently constructed herself an enormously impressive platform since she hit the ground running. Her newest single, “3rd & Fairfax”, is a brilliant demonstration of her versatility, angelic vocals and lyrical structures, as well as overall craft.

With beautiful piano progressions that tailor’s to a more rotund low end soundtrack worthy approach, his track is definitely one that makes Katie a very noticeable standout. It’s peaceful, magical, and isn’t convoluted with an array of overproduced elements or multiple instruments to take you away from Katie‘s vocal spirit. It’s a song that really brings you relaxation, fascination, and a multifaceted aura to her presence that is rare among today’s artists. This single is the perfect example of that old saying: less is more. We want to hear Katie, without the unnecessary noise, post production theatrics, or any sort of distractions. We want to hear an artist’s overall craft and signature sound that can really grow on you – and make you wanna delve deeper into an artist’s catalogue, as well as future prospects. And “3rd & Fairfax” is definitely a song that will entice you into finding out more about Katie; be it her music, passions, or personality.

This single is currently available on Spotify and other platforms, and we highly encourage our readers to really give Katie the attention she truly deserves. Her artistic merit is genuine, her musical factors are addictive, and she’ll definitely be an artist you’ll be sticking with once you get a grasp onto her overall sound.

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Artist Review: Jonah Melvon – “RainWater Project” LP

Review by: Justyn W. Brodsky

Some music knows exactly how to touch the soul. With ambient vocal melodies, passionate rhythms and multifaceted male/female hooks, Jonah Melvon delivers up an innovative and soulful R&B album of anthems with that classic sound with brilliant textures of Jazz, Hip Hop and everything in between with every track on his newest LP RainWater Project.

Delving into a spectrum of a glistening R&B signature sound that perfectly resonates from the classics we’ve all come to know and love combined with today’s modern sensibility, RainWater Project is a triumphant album of tracks that really offer up an artist’s true passion in both performance value, as well as the strong messages in the content. This record awakens the entrepreneur spirit within all of us with his song “1099 (Mom And Pops)” from the album. A piano-infused, bluesy laid back tune that really nurtures the Soul from both Jonah‘s vocals, as well as the female feature artist. The song’s bossa-nova and rhythmic tempo really carries the mood of the track with each verse standing its own ground with the narratives and melodies paralleling each other perfectly. Then landing us into a chorus that’ll have you singing this one in your head well after it’s over.

The album also plants the spotlight on areas like gentrification, and an inhuman presidency crafted from his anthemic track “What’s Good for You“. A song that is powerful in its delivery and versatile in its overall edge. This track, with just as much swagger, puts another modern bluesy touch on this finely tuned single that brings out a brilliant execution from all angles. The message is powerful and the Hip Hop-additive makes this track very effective and gives it the perfect touches. It’s a song that really explores the true core of Jonah‘s talent and vocal approach. From songwriting technique to the song’s nostalgic pacing, this song will definitely win you over and will have you exploring the rest of this album more closely.

The biggest standout about RainWater Project is the authenticity and originality. A dynamic blend of tracks that mix the best of yesterday’s R&B approach and today’s innovative production value in all the right places. That, along with the multi-genre additives and several tasty flavors from each track will make this album one of your favorite Soul/R&B records you’ve heard this year so far. It’s an album with staying power, the power to stay with you well after it’s over. It’s also the type of record that will have you diving further into Jonah Melvon‘s catalogue as well as future prospects. RainWater Project is gonna give him a very promising year, and if this review is what lead you to his discovery, you’ll be thanking us later.

Connect with: Jonah Melvon:

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Press Release: Kimberly Brewer Gets Ready To Glisten The Christmas Spirit With Her Holiday Anthem “Every Day Feels Like Christmas”

Article by: Justyn Brodsky

With soulfully angelic vocals, an elite group of contributing musicians and multifaceted production value, Kimberly Brewer brings a new kind of magic to the holiday season with her upcoming single, “Every Day Feels Like Christmas”, slated for release on December 13th.

Kimberly is no stranger to the industry at all. She has been on an uphill journey in the world of music and entertainment since she began hitting the ground running in the 80s, and became known for her long time collaboration with Stevie Wonder. She has also contributed vocals to several other superstars including Whitney Houston, Kristen Vigard, Teena Marie, Rick James, K.D. Lang, Will Downing, Boney James, Vanessa Williams, and also toured with Earth, Wind & Fire as a backup vocalist in 2002 and 2004.

Now continuing her musical legacy with her newest holiday single, “Every Day Feels Like Christmas”, Kimberly‘s voice resonates beautifully with the Christmas spirit paralleled by her R&B infused vibrant vocals and soulfully fulfilling, wholesome sound. The contributing band for the track is comprised of some of the industry’s most elite musicians from Kimberly‘s life, including Herman Jackson, Byron Miller, and long time collaborator and musical ally, Stevie Wonder; who rocks a melodic harmonica track on this single.

This song, recorded in just five days as a live session, is a soulful and blissful R&B anthem perfect for the holiday season. The song’s precision in performance and production value brings out the best of Kimberly‘s undeniably catchy and attention-grabbing vocal tones and never fails to embrace your soul in every measure. From several-part harmonies, heartfelt lyrics and a classic R&B feel with today’s modern elements, “Every Day Feels Like Christmas” is a perfect addition to your holiday playlist the whole family will enjoy. Another amazing thing about this song is its staying power – it’s a track that stays with you even long after it’s over. It’s music that lights up your life even in the darkest of times, and when Kimberly sings, she sings to your soul. And it’s a feeling that will stay with you every time you hear her voice, especially in this track.

If you’re a fan of real Soul and R&B music reminiscent of the classic Motown era, then “Every Day Feels Like Christmas” will be one of your favorites for many years to come. It’s a captivating and nostalgic song that brings out the magic of the holiday season, and will be enjoyed for many more to come for this time of year. The single officially releases on December 13th, and will be available on several digital music retailers and streaming platforms.

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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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Artist Review: Collin McInelly – “Change” EP & “Home” Single

Review by: Justyn Brodsky

Artistically merited, authentic and ambient, Collin McInelly‘s voice is blissful, hypnotizing and showcases an array of ranges that gives him endless versatility.

With his 4-track visceral Alt/Indie-infused EP Change, we hear a collection of songs that tell compelling stories in different chapters. Each song is intelligently intertwined within the same universe, but shows different angles of how McInelly articulates himself. From anthemic piano measures, melodic guitar progressions and atmospheric vocal textures, these tracks delve into a signature sound and style that really showcases McInelly as a true original of his kind. You’ll hear something different each time, but you’ll know it’s still coming from the same artist. And that’s what makes these songs truly magical – the perfect paralleling of consistency and diversity.

McInelly definitely knows how to construct very effective chord progressions that allow him to make brilliant use of his vocal range and the melody choices he accompanies with it. His tones are soothing, intimate, and at times ominous as well. From subtle approaches to upbeat and climactic song structures, each song and chapter from Change really lets you get to know Collin McInelly on a higher level than your average artist.

His newest single “Home” is the perfect follow-up track and next-level song that offers up components from everything you heard with his EP, and really puts McInelly‘s musicianship factors into one intelligently crafted package. The song is rhythmic and soulful, with a kick drum tempo that could easily remind you of a genuine heartbeat that beats along to every measure of the song. It’s a track that embraces an aura of emotions, vibes, and the overall nature of McInelly‘s artistic merit, and has a very thought provoking sensibility. You can hear his sound evolve in “Home” and really puts forth anticipation to what he has up his sleeve.

Collin McInelly is the perfect artist for today’s Alt/Indie wave, and can be appreciated by any avid listener of genres that resonate with melody and quality songwriting; both musically and lyrically. He will easily become one of your new favorite artists before the year is out.

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Artist Review: What After This? – “Wish I Could” EP

Article by: Justyn Brodsky

Dark, ominous and hauntingly beautiful, the visceral aura of What After This? conveys in the new EP ‘Wish I Could’ is a soundtrack-worthy rollercoaster of climactic emotions and musical landscapes.

The ‘Wish I Could‘ EP is the musical outcome of some nothing short of remarkably unsuccessful endeavors, of the realization that you are not what you hoped to be, of constant guilt, shame and remorse, of the ever present appalling self-pity. Nevertheless it is a somewhat naive but utterly sincere effort to express these sentiments through the music.

And that is exactly what’s at play here – expression. Where the music can also create a visual aspect, as well as emotional. Driven by melodically ambient piano progressions, suspenseful keyboard string synthesizers and rhythmic tempos, ‘Wish I Could’ brings us on a journey of expression and perspective with very thought provoking tracks that tie together several angles of emotional conflicts. It’s a record that you feel to the core and the compositions are an absolute stroke of genius whether you listen inside or outside the box.

The presence of the 5-track EP is extremely strong, cinematic and has production value that really delves into pivotal detail. Each track is an anthem in its own right, and really provides parallels between what we hear and feel. It’s the type of record that is most effective when you sit back, clear your mind and close your eyes to let this music guide you to your inner emotions. What will you feel when you hear it? What will you see? What message will these songs convey to you? That’s the part that makes ‘Wish I Could’ the gem that it really is. These songs, though portrayed by the creator, could have different meanings to those who listen. But is often better knowing the songs and their origination – and seeing how you relate to it directly.

These tracks could easily be a modern film score for today’s film industry, and this project has all the right elements in place that could make stunning visuals just from the moods that are crafted. You’ll be absolutely blown away by the effectiveness that ‘Wish I Could’ sustains.

Connect with What After This?:

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