Evolution is everything. Failure to evolve and change with the times is to simply stay stuck in one place. Some of the highest forms of evolution have been through our expressions of creativity and from these expressions have sprung new and awesome forms of communication, such as music, writing, and other obvious art forms.
So it was pretty refreshing to come across a band that does things on their own terms, and it appears that A Primitive Evolution most definitely have the ball in their court. For the past 5 years the Toronto, Ontario 3-piece have been tearing up their musical landscape with a brand of organic hard rock that seems to be increasingly rare nowadays. While not relying on electronic manipulation and heavy studio trickery to get the point across is not entirely uncommon, the ability to create something deeply rooted in the organic while being fresh sounding sometimes is, and this is where A Primitive Evolution shines. On their sophomore album called The Prize, guitarist/vocalist Brett Carruthers, bassist/vocalist Stephany Seki, and drummer Stu Dead have taken an old school alternative rock sound and cast it into a modern light that works on so many levels.
What was meant to be an unplugged quick fix of music for the band and fans alike turned into an unexpected foray into re-imagining previously released songs and the grateful acceptance of evolutionary spinning wheel. Now this is not to say that the band reinvented itself, but they definitely challenged themselves to move forward, and the results are ultimately gratifying. Tracks like “Dead End”, “Coming and Going”, “Train Wreck”, and “Show Me”, all from their debut album are given new life on The Prize, and the acoustic element offers a take on these songs that is well rounded, focused, and maybe even a little bit heavier in how they sink into your skin. The addition of strings are also a welcome addition and fit well with vocalist Brett Carruthers stylistic mahogany rich voice. New tracks such as the album opener “Lord Of Reason” show a band that has taken evolution to the next level, and even though The Prize is largely an acoustic album, A Primitive Evolution certainly have not abandoned their roots by any means. In fact it seems that their roots have only grown deeper, offering cold hard proof that when technology and talent do battle it is talent that most often comes out on top.
~ Nathan Pike
It’s best not to take oneself too seriously in this saturated music market where image and style can seriously dominate over quality. It sometimes seems that we’re living in indie music times that are far too cynical and cool to be shameless in artistic output or in the just having fun with it.
Vulture Kult are a heavy rock outfit from Saskatoon, Canada. Fun, furious but far from greasy kids stuff, It is clear that guitarist/vocalist Hans Beilefeld and drummer Bradley Friesen wear their musical hearts on their sleeves, having no shame giving it up in the name of rock n’ roll.
Sounding like a heavier and speedier Black Sabbath with elements of late 60′s through 90′s brat boy metal and punk rock thrown in for good measure, this prairie town 2-piece seem poised to prove that rawk in its purest form is alive and kicking. Their second release titled Don’t Let Rock N’ Roll Ruin Your Life is a loud and dirty heavy rock assault that doesn’t mince words or waste any time. To say this is high octane would be an understatement. This is more like the rage virus but more fun loving.
The album opens up with “Electric Medication”, an immediate and driving tune that reminds me a bit like a slightly less disturbed evil twin of Toronto duo, Lullabye Arkestra’s “We Fuck the Night” but with Ozzy/Lemmy/Rob Zombie on vocals. From there it’s a romp through all the twists and turns that make this kind of music great. Sinister guitar, solid tireless drumming and a ragged voice that sings about the things that fuel them such as women, fighting, drinking and living it up/rocking it out. Although Don’t Let Rock and Roll Ruin Your Life isn’t all kicking and screaming as they explore their gentler side on the albums two closing songs, “Movie of Me” and “Checking Out”. Though these dreamy vibrato laden ditties seem a little awkward immediately following such an all out attack, they do prove that these guys know more than just chunky riffs and aren’t afraid to throw in a little humorous surprise here and there.
Vulture Kult plays the kind of hard music I have always loved, intense, driven and never over compensating or trying too hard to be clever. It’s not particularly breaking new ground or pushing at any boundaries but it’s tried and true and as a lover of good music i offer respect. If you have a soft spot for well played hard rock music then Vulture Kult is definitely worth checking out.
~ Nathan Pike
Band website: http://vulturekult.com/
Band Facebook fan page: https://www.facebook.com/VultureKult
Band Bandcamp page: http://vulturekult.bandcamp.com/
BlacklistUnion– Til’ Death do us Part
By Mindy McCall edited by Michael Rand
About the Artist: Deep from the depths of the Hollywood, California arises the 5 headed beast known as Blacklist Union led by Singer/Songwriter Tony West who just released their latest CD entitled “Til Death do us Part” in 2012 (BLU RECORDS). Formed in 2004 by frontman Tony West, BLU released their debut “After The Mourning” April of 2006 which was met by critical acclaim all across the globe. FromMemphistoMelbournetoLouisianatoLondon, Blacklist Union instantly made a mark throughout the rock-n-roll underground . Their follow up in 2008 “Breakin’ Bread With The Devil” received the same amount of critical acclaim and certainly put them on the map in the rock n roll world yet again.
Review: I always listen to the opening track extremely carefully. It’s the opening track the band or artists has selected to hit your ears first and foremost. Let’s just say the opening title track sets the stage rather well for this CD. It was a great intro piece that stuck in my head and had me eager for what lied ahead. All in all the whole CD is brilliantly delivered with a powerful Hard Rock, guitar driven sound with songs that hit hard and has serious staying power. Music will remind you of typical bad boy bands Saliva, Seether, Puddle of Mud and even Buckcherry toAlicein Chains. To be honest I can’t say enough about this bands overall signature sound. Their bio describes it best: this body of music will keep you mesmerized and hypnotized throughout its 45 minutes of pure gut level rock-n-roll. An 11 song collection of songs written and performed by a cast of who’s who from the rock n roll world. Recorded with ¾’s of the well known rock band SALIVA, as well as Hunt Sales ( formerly of David Bowie’s Tin Machine & Iggy & the Stooges) this CD delivers the goods. Every song is real, not so overly- corporate sounding. BlacklistUnionhave a sound that favors the late 90’s Alternative Rock movement but with a modern rock feel. They will also remind me of a variety of bands from the early 80’s in the hey day of the Hard Rock movement like the Motley Crue and Dangerous Toys. I’ve never heard a new band sound so fresh. In other words Rock n Roll and Punk need more bands like Blacklist Union immediately. Indeed Blacklist Union represent a fresh new voice in modern rock and present a strong message that’s aggressive, powerful and personifies Sex, Drugs, and Rock n’ Roll. “Til’ Death do us Part” manages to capture lighting in a bottle and is very loud, in your face musical statement. They may have a new sound but the true Rock n’ Roll spirit will always remain the same. My favorite tracks include: Til’ Death do Us Part, Game Over, Don’t Change, Feed the Snakes.
Purchase Link: http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/blacklistunion3
Conclusion: If there was one word I would use to describe Blacklist Union it would be attitude. This CD will simply make you want to start some kind of a riot, or go out and start a revolution of your own. In close Blacklist Union deliver the goods – in so many different and unique ways and proves old school Rock n Roll is still alive and kicking.
Dead Modern Villains – Wisconsin Blues (2011)
URL – http://www.deadmodernvillains.com/fr_home.cfm
About the Artist: Dead Modern Villains is a 3 piece Hard Rock band from Green Bay, Wisconsin. . This is one band that’s currently making a name fro themselves with their powerful songs and action packed live performances. Accolades: 2012 WAMI nominee for Rock Band of the Year (Wisconsin Area Music Industry) Opened for Supersuckers, L.A.’s Oedipus, The Spittin’ Cobras, Enuff z Nuff.
Cited Influences: The White Stripes, Led Zeppelin Official, The Black Crowes, Motörhead, Black Sabbath
Musical Genera: Hard Rock, Rock n’ Roll.
Review: “Wisconsin Blues” is their latest release and the result though far from a self-indulgent ego trip, rather a moving and elegiac artistic statement from start to finish. This is not your overly predictable Ramon Noodle “Sing-Songy” Nikelback-esque Rock band. Instead this band could even be classed as a 3 genera band: Alternative Rock, Hard Rock and Heavy Full Tilt Rock Blues. Dead Modern Villains have way too much precision and clarity to live in the shadows of overly-predictable Indie Rock. Indeed this is clearly evident in songs like the title track, Hindsight is 20/20 and my personal favorite Southern Voodoo Tomahawk Attack which methodically ups the ante to a very respectable level of catchy musical craftsmanship and addictive hard rocking melody that transcends pigeonholing. The music is also commercially viable with a fresh sound and a jagged edge that holds the attentions span of the listener perfectly. In a nutshell this is Led Zeppelin meets Kid Rock, AC/DC meets Tesla, Kenny Wayne Sheppard meets Lynard Skynard. Get my point?. The 10 song line-up appeals to many listeners with a wide variety of musical styles – but it packs a powerful punch with a powerful voice for all the rockers out there who want something more than Nikelback, Daughtry or Lifeshouse. Man that felt good!!!
Best Track: Southern Voodoo Tomahawk Attack
Song Samples from Thankful @ REVERBNATION – http://www.reverbnation.com/deadmodernvillains#
Live Clip/MP4 – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7T7HvBRNiDY
Conclusion: I would imagine in time we will hear more from this band in the near future. No doubt Dead Modern Villains has carved a marketable niche for themselves thus far setting them up for marketable success down the road. But for now I can honestly say this is one artist that clearly gives you a musical snapshot that is highly original, unique and dare I say dangerous and chaotic in scope. What else can I say? Sex, Drugs and Rock n’ Roll is alive and kicking.
Rating: 4.0 of 5 Stars
Michael Rand edited by Rory Richardson
Overall Rating: 4.5/5
This is the latest 11 song CD from Seattle, Washington based 4 member Alt-Rock band Step Daddy entitled “Love” released under Independent Music Promotions.
I always listen to the opening track extremely carefully. It’s the opening track the band or artists has selected to hit your ears first and foremost. The opening track “The Bums Mysterious Briefcase” sets the stage rather well for this CD. It was a great intro piece that stuck in my head and had me eager for what lied ahead. All in all the whole CD is brilliantly delivered with a powerful Progressive Rock/Metal, guitar driven textures with songs that at times can bite you and hit you hard with serious melodic staying power. Music will remind you of “Mr. Bungle, Tomahawk, Faith No More, Peeping Tom and the Colonel Claypool’s Flying Frog Brigade. To be honest I can’t say enough about this bands overall signature sound.
A recent review said it best: ”Their sound takes time to listen to due to the different elements of genres that are brewing on one track to the other. On their track: Scurvy’ the bass starts off with a catchy hook and then next thing you know you’re rocking your head as the guitar adds to the vibe. The progressions are there and you must be ready for the ride they put you through.”
“Step Daddy” definitely represent a fresh new voice in modern Hard Rock and present a strong message that’s aggressive, upbeat and highly melodic and off the charts weird. “Love” manages to capture lighting in a bottle and is very loud, chaotic and at times even in your face and unpredictable as hell. Each piece is real, not so overly- corporate sounding and very defiant in nature. Step Daddy have a clean-tight sound that favors the late 90’s Alternative Rock movement but with a modern new Hard Rock feel. They will also remind me of a variety of bands from the 80’s in the hey day of the Hair Metal movement. They have a slight grunge Seattle sound but the spirit remains the same. I’ve never heard a new band sound so melodic and fresh. In other words Rock n’ Roll and needs more bands like “Step Daddy” immediately.
The song that stuck with me the most is “People Pleaser”.
If there was one word I would use to describe Step Daddy it would be energetic. This “Love” CD will simply make you feel more aggressive and ready to start a riot. It’s a real jolt to the system. So what I did – listen to the CD at full blast in the dark. I did this again with a strobe light and it was mind numbing. In close “Step Daddy” delivers the goods and is one of the hottest rock 4-somes I’ve heard in quite some time. The have much to offer the listener n so many different and unique ways.
Download “Love” CD BANDCAMP – http://stepdaddy.bandcamp.com/
Written by Mindy McCall edited by Michael Rand
My favourite new hard rock band, GlassBullet, have just released their debut EP titled Misguided. The four tracks finally arrive after much anticipation and excitement from both the fans and band themselves.
Fronted by Lewis Ward, the band have successfully created their own individual image and sound after taking inspiration from bands such as AC/DC, 30 Seconds To Mars, Nickleback, Black Stone Cherry and Led Zeppelin.
“The music influences throughout the band are very wide, I mean, we have our own style but each member of the band is influenced in their own way”
In May, I spoke to the band and could instantly tell from that they’re upcoming EP would be something incredible, as their friendships in the studio were close, despite changing their bass player soon after to Tom Bushell of Trivax. After listening to Misguided for the first time since it’s release, I am not disappointed.
GlassBullet, it seems, have now arrived on the music scene.
Misguided is track one of the EP, the first hit the band wrote. It was the finale song on their set lists at gigs and the one song to see them mature. Opening with a faced pace drum beat, the heavy hard rock influence kicks in and instantly you’re dragged into a world of head banging as Lewis brings us through with his distinctive vocals. The fantastic guitars and solos make it a song everybody should have on their iPod. When I say that this song is addictive, I should correct myself. That’s a total understatement to what is genius.
It leads into Mind Reader, which begins with darker guitars and features Tom’s famous complex bass strings paving the way in this faster paced song. There seems to be a perfect balance between the two guitars, both complimenting Lewis’ vocals and both fit perfectly around the array of solos on each song. It is the same in Falling Down too, which begs a motion upon listening. It’s the only song to heavily feature clean guitar in the verses which seamlessly move into recognisable GlassBullet tones in the chorus. The transition is seamless, almost unnoticeable!
The final song on the EP, Rise Of The River, opens dauntingly on guitar with sparing drums before it kicks off in true fashion. This is another song recognised from the band’s gigging scene, with influence on the bass guitar in verses and a repeated riff throughout. Lyrically too, it’s a fascinating song with such powerful words in the chorus that echo around
“My hands are shaking I can feel the rise, of the river in my veins,
So try to stop it, it numbs the pain.
You was to blame, the rivers stopped me from going insane.”
In it’s entirety, the EP is incredible.
Get onto their YouTube now, as you can listen to the four songs on there – but also watch footage of their live gigs and three Studio Diary entries with behind the scenes clips of their time in the studio.
VULTURE KULT – “Don’t Let Rock n’ Roll Ruin Your Life” written by Heather Savage edited by Michael Rand
Musical Genera: Alternative Rock
URL – http://vulturekult.com/
Overall Rating: 5/5
“Don’t Let Rock n’ Roll Ruin Your Life” is the latest release from 2 piece band Vulture Kult based out of Saskatoon, Canada. CD was released in 2012 and is the second to date. I would describe Vulture Kult as one of the more darker, denser, more straight forward Alt-Rock band out there right now. They have infectious and hooky songs, and amazing live presentation and 2 CD’s to their credit. The result is pounding drums, guitar riffs that light up the dark night sky, and vocals that will rip a hole through your chest. Sometimes sleazy, but always raging, Vulture Kult will tell a story that you will understand and enjoy to the fullest. Band members include: Hans Bielefeld: Guitars, Vocals, Bradley Friesen: Drums, Vocals
Getting to the album: “Don’t Let Rock n’ Roll Ruin Your Life is their second release to date and and it has much to commend it. Admittedly, there is a whole lot of variety to these arrangements and performances. First: The impressive 2 piece band delivers rock solid playing like a well oiled machine. This is testament to hundreds of hours of rehearsal time no doubt. Second: Vocalist Bielefeld’s voice hit the mark remarkably well within the context of this catalogue. Third: their sound and amazing songwriting touch is action packed. In fact one could classify Vulture Kult as a four genera artist: Progressive, Classic, Hard Rock and even a dash of Punk. All songs are a skillful combination of all the aforementioned genera’s. Music will remind you of Jon Foreman, Kutess, Hawk Nelson and Falling Up. VK have the power and songwriting prowess to be extremely dangerous. There’s also a unique quality to this catalogue that breaks the mold when compared to the overly predictable, forgetful rock that’s been filling the airwaves lately. What am I trying to say – well let me start by saying there is nothing predictable and forgetful about Vulture Kult. Weather live or in the studio Vulture Kult is one of the hottest bands north of the border right now. Not every square inch is filled with musical ambience delivered under duress – but musical space this allows the music to breathe on its own with passion that cannot be faked. Equally as impressive is how marketable this band is as they have effectively found the voice for all frustrated Hard-Rock fans out there. It covers so much ground and despite this it manages to not spread itself to thin across to many lines – nicely done! This is harder to do than it sounds and can only be a by product of being ones self musically. I’ve always said if you can play it a party, then it’s marketable. The music is extremely marketable – with a raw sound that is passionate and entertaining very much like the band.
BANDCAMP – http://vulturekult.bandcamp.com/
MY SPACE – http://www.myspace.com/vulturekult
Final Word: All 111 tracks will genuinely rock your world, shake the tree and lift your spirits unlike most music you hear on the radio these days.
New York hard rock/punk band EndAnd have announced they will be releasing a new full-length album in early 2013 called “Mechanics & Energetics of Stilt-Running” and they want your help to make it happen. The band have launched a Kickstarter campaign with a host of options for the public to help the band release the new disc, as well as promote and tour in support of it. EndAnd’s previous release “Adventures of Fi in Space” took inspiration from an eclectic assortment of bands like Nirvana, Guided by Voices, Polvo, Fugazi and the Melvins. “Mechanics & Energetics of Stilt-Running” will take a more focused and heavy approach.
Get involved and help make EndAnd’s new album happen at Kickstarter. EndAnd have recorded a video with a personal message to their fans here.
In the meantime, “Adventures of Fi in Space” can be downloaded for free at www.endand.bandcamp.com.
Watch the new “Commando” Music Video.
Walking Sideways is an Alternative Rock band that come to us from Long Island, NY. Band members include: Erik Hagedorn (Vocals, Acoustic Guitar), Joe Brown (Guitar), Justin Cellini (Bass) and Chris Ciccone (Drums).
This self titled CD is one release that certainly doesn’t disappoint. This is one band that brings to the table effective songwriting via a highly passionate musical delivery. This meshed with a one in a million Alternative Rock sound and well rounded songwriting make for an effective combination. Walking Sideways even touch on Hard Alt-Rock with hints of Jam Band, and Melodic Indie Pop-Rock. All songs are wonderfully simple but masterful in their overall arrangements. Music reminded me of a cross between Chevelle, 10 Years, Evans Blue and Taproot. This CD though a bit short is quite entertaining and uplifting overall with an amazing vocal front of Erik Hagedorn who is quite appealing (vocals and visuals). If he just so happened to write all these songs well he could be bigger than any of us realize at the moment. All songs are amazing via well-crafted pieces and top tiered musicianship. There’s some incredible moments on this CD. Many songs simply personify the human experience which gives Walking Sideways an amazing feel in it’s attempt to connect with a cult fanbase locally or abroad.
Walking Sideways have proven themselves with this latest release. I only wish there was more songs. They are clearly an up and coming talent around New York and all 4 members are clearly capable songwriters, artists and musicians. I must admit Walking Sideways sucked me in like a powerful drug and refused to let go long after the CD was over. This usually indicates he is something special about the artist or band in question. Thus deserving praise, recognition and musical fame at the international level.
REVERBNATION – http://www.reverbnation.com/walkingsideways
FACEBOOK – http://www.facebook.com/walkingsidewaysband
“Haven” live video clip – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K0OEZ5O97BQ
Overall Rating 7/10
Written by Joshua Beach edited by Michael Rand
SEX SLAVES – Call of the Wild
By Michael Rand
Overall Rating: 5/5
Sex Slaves are a 3 piece Rock band from New York and have been making a name for themselves regionally and internationally. They have received critical acclaim from many music critics and webzines around the globe, and are known for their explosive live performances. Musical Genera: Punk, Hard Rock.
“Call of the Wild” is their fourth release and the result though far from a self-indulgent ego trip, rather a moving and elegiac artistic statement from start to finish. This is not your overly predictable Ramon Noodle Indie Rock band. Instead Eric13, Del Cheetah, and J/Bomb could be classed as a 3 genera band: Alternative Rock, Hard Rock and Punk-Indie Rock. Sex Slaves have way too much precision and clarity to live in the shadows of overly-predictable Indie Rock. Indeed this is clearly evident in songs like “Lose the Dress” and “Burning Bridges” which methodically ups the ante to a very respectable level of catchy musical craftsmanship and addictive hard rock that transcends typical pigeonholing. Indeed there’s reason why this band is becoming more and more popular each and every year. The music is also commercially viable with a fresh sound and a rock hard-rocking vibe that holds the attentions span of the listener perfectly. In a nutshell this is The Motley Crue meets Green Day. or Kiss on Steroids. The 13 song line-up appeals to many listeners with a wide variety of musical styles – but it one hell of a ride with a powerful voice for starved Rock n’ Rollers out there who have had enough of the musical status quo.
I would imagine in time we will hear more from this amazing band in the near future. No doubt Sex Slaves has carved a marketable niche for themselves thus far setting them up for marketable success over the years to come. I might add they are currently playing on The Warp Tour. For now I can honestly say this is one artist that clearly gives you a musical snapshot that is highly original, unique and dare I say dangerous and chaotic in scope. What else would you expect.
BEWARE IT’S THE SEX SLAVES COMING TO A STADIUM NEAR YOU!
FACEBOOK – http://www.facebook.com/nyrocknroll
MY SPACE – http://www.myspace.com/sexslaves
Call of the Wild can be purchased at the Sex Slaves Music Store – https://www.facebook.com/nyrocknroll/app_155326481208883
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