Thursday, February 28, 2013

Within the Ruins go hard on new album

Within the Ruins released their third album, Elite, this week. Their previous albums and EPs were all great, but this record is their best work yet. On their last album Invade they had the same sound, yet all of the songs tended to melt together. On Elite that isn't  the case. While none of the songs are as good as "Versus" or "Invade" off of their last album, the album as a whole is more cohesive and just better as a whole.
There are no slow songs in Within the Ruins entire discography and this album keeps going with that trend. Songs like "New Holy War," "The Charm" and the single "Feeding Frenzy" are all highlights and stick out. Lyrically the band stay along their lyrical path of other albums. The lyrics all touch on aggression in some context. "You're eating yourselves alive," front man Tim Goergen screams during the single "Feeding Frenzy."  Goergen's vocals are so strong on every song and even though this is only his second album with the band, his vocals have become a shining characteristic of the band's material.
While songs like "Solace" and "Elite" have lyrics that sometimes get to be a bit much, the instrumental tracks are where the band shine. Without Goergen to get in the way the band show what world class musicians they are and how much true talent they have. "Ataxia II" and "Dreamland" are instrumental, yet in no way uninteresting like lots of instrumental songs get.
All in all Within the Ruins show that they aren't going anywhere and they're etching a place for themselves on the heavy music landscape. The band aren't going anywhere, anytime soon.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Mariah Carey updates classic sound

Mariah Carey has had a rough couple of years musically. Her last album, 2009's Memoirs of an Imperfect Angel only had a handful of great songs and her 2012 comeback single "Triumphant (Get 'Em)" which featured Meek Mill and Rick Ross was lackluster.
Carey released "Almost Home" which is the first single from the film Oz the Great and Powerful. The single is a classic Carey pop ballad with electropop influences. The song is a touching song has a great message and while Carey's vocals aren't all there on the entire song, she shows up on the second half of the song. While "Almost Home" won't be a huge hit for Carey, it goes to show that she isn't done yet.
Carey is currently working on her fourteenth studio album, due out this year. Hopefully it's more like "Almost Home" and not like "Triumphant."

Demi Lovato brings it on new single

Demi Lovato's third album Unbroken was the first time that the singer hit the mainstream. After two amazing, but overlooked, pop-rock albums aimed at the Disney crowd Lovato hit the top 40 hard with "Skyscraper" and "Give Your Heart a Break." Unbroken for the most part got rid of her rocker roots and had a more dance-pop and R&B influence. While the album was a change for Lovato it was a great record.
Yesterday Lovato released her single "Heart Attack" from her yet untitled fourth record. The song is an electropop song that features traces of acoustic rock. The single is catchy and fun, like most Lovato songs from all of her albums. The song is a personal song about falling in love and risking heartbreak. While that isn't the deepest of topics, Lovato does it so well.
Lovato's vocals are another thing to marvel at. She rocks it like a younger Kelly Clarkson. Lovato always touches her listeners with her emotional performance on each song. She could definitely make the alphabet sound emotional. This song is a great look of what is to come and if this is any indication Lovato's next album will be a great record.

Yeah Yeah Yeahs get higher on new single

Yeah Yeah Yeahs released their first single in three years "Sacrilege" off of their upcoming fourth album Mosquito. The album is said to be a return to the sound of their first two albums. Fever to Tell and Show Your Bones were phenomenal but the band disappointed with It's Blitz. That album had a more dance-influenced sound and was nowhere near as great as their earlier albums.
The single is very Show Your Bonesy, more laid back and chill, but still bouncy like the band's early material. The inclusion of the gospel choir is what makes "Sacrilege" so great. The band have never done anything like that before. If Mosquito is as experimental as this single is we're in for a real treat.

One Direction cover Blondie on new single

One Direction have released a cover of Blondie's punk rock single "One Way or Another." The single mixes in parts of "Teenage Kicks" by The Undertones. The single was released for the British charity Comic Relief.
The song takes the original fun attitude of the single and adds One Direction's signature dance/pop/rock sound to the mix. The song sounds kind of silly coming from five teenage boys but the song is so catchy that it's sure to be stuck in people's heads for days, just like the original. While the cover doesn't show up the original it still shows that One Direction may be destined for more than just boy band one-hit-wonderdom.

Kate Nash releases average new single

Kate Nash has always been known to release quirky singles such as "Birds" and "Do-Wah-D0o" but on her latest offering "3AM" off of her upcoming third album Girl Talk Nash has grown a little boring. Nash released her alternative styled EP Death Proof last year and nothing about it was along the lines of her first two albums. Then Nash released this single last week and while it's catchy and a good song, it's not the greatness that Nash was once known for.
The song is a fast paced indie rocker and while the lyrics are interesting, it doesn't really stick. Nash's past songs were addictive and got stuck in people's heads. The song is a little better than the songs on Death Proof, so hopefully when Girl Talk is released on March 5 there are better songs.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Escape The Fate release first single off of new album

Escape the Fate released a sneak peak of their new single last year, This week they finally released their new single "Ungrateful." The song is a heavy offering with a catchy chorus. While Escape the Fate have never been the heaviest band, this song is breaking the mold they usually fit in.
The song features angry lyrics that are sure to spark controversy. They are clearly aimed at former frontman Ronnie Radke. His new band Falling in Reverse has lyrics that are usually aimed at Craig Mabbitt who took his place fronting Escape the Fate. "No one hears a fucking word you say," Mabbitt screams at his adversary. It's time somebody shut Radke up.
This song is a nice new sound for the band. Their new album also titled Ungrateful will be released  on May 14. The album is set to feature vocals from former Attack Attack! singer Caleb Shomo and Fall Out Boy singer Patrick Stump. Another single is expected to be released before the album's release.

Amaranthe shine on new single

I'm not familiar with Amaranthe at all, apparently they have had an album out. I heard their single "The Nexus" a few weeks ago. While I had never heard their stuff before. Amaranthe sound like a more metal version of Lacuna Coil or a more poppy version of System Divide or Deadlock.
"The Nexus" mixes in pop and metalcore with Nightwish influenced music. The band have a female clean vocalist Elize Ryd and two male vocalists. Jake E does clean vocals and Andreas Solveström  who does harsh vocals.
The song makes no sense lyrically, yet it is enjoyable to listen to. The band have been panned by metal music critics but I like them. I'm definitely going to check out their older music. This song is catchy, heavy and melodic. "The Nexus" is everything I like about metal combined. Amaranthe will release their sophomore album The Nexus in March. If this single is any indication I'm sure this will be a great will be a great record.

Justin Timberlake releases new song off of upcoming album

On Sunday during The Grammys Justin Timberlake released his song "Mirrors" off of his long-awaited third album The 20/20 Experience. The first single was the atrocious "Suit & Tie" which features Jay-Z. "Mirrors" is an great song. It's over eight minutes long and has a soulful sound, but mixes in rock influences like he did on his best song ever "Love Stoned/I Think She Knows" off of his last album FutureSex/LoveSounds.
"Mirrors" may not be an official single but it got me excited for the new album, which the actual single didn't do. The song is about his now wife Jessica Biel. The song is a cute love song and while the lyrics don't really live up too the song, the music is just so gorgeous that it's hard to even care about that.
The 20/20 Experience is due for release in the U.S. on March 19. "Mirrors" is on iTunes now.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Luna Mortis are reuniting

Metal band Luna Mortis are reuniting in 2013. The band released several albums under the name The Ottoman Empire. Then in 2009 they released their best album under their current name called The Absence. The band soon got dropped from Century Media Records and then in 2010 they called it quits.
 What made Luna Mortis amazing was their vocalist Mary Zimmer. Zimmer seamlessly goes from singing to screaming in no time at all. The band's catchy, aggressive sound featured touches of death metal, power metal, progressive metal and touches of thrash metal. The Absence was the best metal album at it's time of release and it still holds strong four years after it's release.
At the end of last year the band began posting things on Facebook and Twitter hinting at a reunion. Then yesterday the announcement came.
"Hey everyone! As many of you know, we've been contemplating what 2013 might bring for Luna Mortis. It's with great excitement to confirm that the band WILL be reuniting this year! Details are still forthcoming, though we're booking festivals, and all five members from 'The Absence' are discussing the possibilities. We want to thank you for all your continued support, especially during our extended hiatus - YOU are the reason this is happening! Have ideas for the reunion? Share them with us!"
The band seem to have definite plans to play together, it is unknown whether an album will come out. Here's hoping. Even if no album comes this is the best news for fans of great metal.


Tweet announces new EP

R&B singer Tweet rose to fame as Missy Elliott's protégé in 2002 with her phenomenal debut album, Southern Hummingbird. She had a hit single "Oops (Oh My)" which featured Missy Elliott and became a Top 40 hit. This was to be the only time Tweet was to reach the mainstream.
Her amazing sophomore album It's Me Again, featured a more soulful sound and while the single "Turn da Lights Off" which also featured Elliott went nowhere. Tweet dropped off of the world's stage, her third record Simply Tweet was pushed back for over four years.
Finally, this year, Tweet began to release songs for free download on her Soundcloud profile. While some of the songs weren't very memorable, they were Tweet and that's what matters. Last week on her Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages that her Simply Tweet EP will be released on February 26. This will a live recording of some of the songs off of the album that Tweet that her and her band performed for this EP. The first single is rumored to be called "Enough." The full album is coming out sometime this year. Hopefully these songs will get Tweet back into the spotlight.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Fall Out Boy end hiatus

In 2009, Fall Out Boy went on hiatus. Pete Wentz formed band, Black Cards, frontman Patrick Stump went solo, Joe Trohman played in The Damned and Andy Hurley played in several bands. None of them reached much success so here comes the reunion. The band shot down rumors of a new album and tour, then Monday announced they were playing shows this week and a tour and new album were coming. The ironically titled Save Rock and Roll is due for release on May 6. The first single "My Songs Know What You Did in the Dark (Light Em Up)" was released at the same time this news came.
The single is nothing like any of Fall Out Boy's previous pop-punk songs. In fact it's got a hip-hop/R&B sound that would fit better on Stump's solo record than on a Fall Out Boy album. That being said, the song is catchy and kinda grows on you. At first I found it be stupid, but now it's growing on me. While I do find the band to be a tad overrated, their last two albums were amazing.
Pete Wentz writes the lyrics for the band's songs and this song is no different. The song seems to be a song about a breakup and since Wentz had a very public divorce from wife Ashlee Simpson, my guess is this song is about her. She had a ridiculous single last year called "Bat for a Heart." The song was an angry breakup song and I'm guessing this is Wentz's retaliation song. And Wentz is definitely better lyricist than Simpson so he's the winner.
Even though this song won't be saving rock and roll, it's a good comeback and hopefully it'll get the world thinking back to rock and roll, not this shitty dance music trend that is taking control of the radio.

Cee Lo releases amazing new single

Last week Cee Lo Green released his first single off of his fourth album. The song is a duet with Lauriana Mae. The album has no title or release date but if it's anything like his previous album, we're in for a great album.
The sunny, soulful "Only You" is a fun, uplifting song that is a duet between Green and Mae. The song is about a couple and how only they can make the other one feel good when things get bad. This is easily the best R&B song of the year. Cee Lo is known for writing hits for Pussycat Dolls, Kelis and Lil' Kim but he's also known for being the frontman of the amazing band Gnarles Barkley as well as having solo hits like 2010's "Fuck You."
The music for the song is fun and makes you want to move while the lyrics cause smiles for a two mile radius. It's good to hear Cee Lo write a positive song after the huge success of "Fuck You" which was a little angry despite being a fun song.
The single is an excellent choice for a first single and hopefully it will bring him even greater success. Cee Lo took a season off of judging The Voice so we can expect more new music soon. The album is expected sometime this year.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Chrisette Michele releases two new singles

Chrisette Michele released her first single and title track off of her fourth album, Better. The song was very similar to the soulful sound of her first three albums. This week Michele released her single "A Couple of Forevers," which serves as the third single.
The song is a beautiful, soulful lovers anthem. Michele shows her vulnerable side, asking to be with her lover forever. It's a cliché love song, like most R&B music and yet it works. works. The song is sure to keep fans happy until Better comes out on April 30. Hopefully her album isn't simply lovey dovey songs about being happy. Michele shines on breakup jams like "Be OK," "Epiphany (I'm Leaving), and "I'm a Star." While this song is great, it's not going to make Michele the next Beyoncé, but that isn't what she wants. Michele has always stayed true to herself and she does that on this song.
Michele's second single released last week is the grown and sexy "Charades" which features a weird guest appearance by 2 Chainz. The song is a sexy song in which Michele is talking about how she can see that her new lover is playing games. 2 Chainz surprisingly doesn't mess up the song like he usually does.
If these songs are any inclination of what Better will sound like, we're in for a treat folks.


More of the same on new Within The Ruins single

Within The Ruins released their new single Monday called "Feeding Frenzy." The deathcore titans are releasing their third album Elite on February 26. Most of their songs sound the same, yet Within The Ruins never disappoint. The new single is catchy and technical and everything Within The Ruins stand for. The band always play great music and with their last album Invade, they got heavier, yet they stayed melodic.
This review is quite short, but when a band release something so perfect, there isn't much to add. Hopefully the rest of the album sounds like this single.

Tegan and Sara grow on new album

Tegan and Sara have always made good music. Their earlier work was more indie and not as interesting. Then in 2007 they released The Con. They had their breakthrough,, catchy hit "Back in Your Head." Then two years later they released their next album Sainthood. The album mixed the new wave of their last few albums with some punk numbers ("Northshore," "Hell). The album was one of their best and with their new album Heartthrob, the sisters really outdo themselves.
The album goes in a more synthpop direction and this works for the girls. Songs like the first single "Closer" and the album's best song "Goodbye, Goodbye" have a dance sound that are sure to keep people on their feet. The album also has it's share of new wave ballads. The gorgeous "I Was a Fool" and the haunting "Now I'm All Messed Up" pack a wallop of emotion.
The album doesn't have any bad songs and ever song is memorable. Other highlights include "I'm Not Your Hero" and "I Couldn't Be Your Friend." Tegan and Sara have always been great at writing catchy, songs that pack emotion.
This album is a great next step in the career of a band that are always growing and evolving. This is what a band should do.