by Al Slavicsky
Sponsored In Part By
Transport League • Satanic Panic
In the vein of Fetish 69, Dismember, and Skinlab, Transport League delivers
us a release that is death-like yet has an industrial metal overtone. Upon
listening to the 11 tracks presented on the release, one must be impressed
by the uniform style that the band creates in their music, and their lyrics
are so intense while being mind bending and mind alternating. Tracks that
stand out include "Tar," which is introduction about satanic panic, "Creep
Provider," which sounds about like Incubus or Sevendust due the harmonies,
and this track may appeal to the mainstream radio, and "Shut To Drown,"
with its distorted guitars mixed with wild drum/percussion/bass riffs which
talks about gamma radiation to cure the transforming disformation of a
person's mind and soul. Overall, Transport League proves that they are
a band that is the new generation of metal.
Defleshed • Fast Forward
Defleshed returns with Fast Forward, which is a very strong release
due to its high energy and brutal lyrics. This is pure death metal at its
highest from. Vocals scream right into your mofo face and grind right into
your cranium until you are force fed its message. Contains the 11 tunes
which were previously released on the imported version including such soon-to-be-classics
as "The Iron and the Maiden," "Domination of the Sub-Queen," and "Snowballing
Blood." Defleshed cranks up the vocals with fast drums, distorted guitars,
brutal bass, and demon-like vocal screams. But the band also decided to
include two bonus live tracks here -- "Under The Blade" and "Thorns of
a Black Rose." Defleshed will eat your flesh and make you want more.
Go Rin No Sho • Inner Light
Go Rin No Sho bring a fresh sound to rap that is both old schoolish and
is refreshing as the new stuff on the market place. The ten tracks on this
release vary in the delivery and styles. "Hands of God" is a song devoted
to how God gets into your life and blesses you; "One + One" is about how
the ghetto is a zoo; "Feel The Rhythm" has an old school drumbeat which
in the vein of old Grandmaster Flash and the raps even make it sound old
school; "Tales of The Crypt" has a morbid message about death; "The Flow"
is a break beat number which rocks the OG school style and could've been
made in 1988; "Friend or Foe" deals with gang violence on the streets;
"Twilight Zone" is about the twilight zone of the mix in Brooklyn and mentions
a lot of today's rap artists; "Rat-Tat-Tat" is about gun violence on the
streets; "On And On" reminds us of a Slick Rick style of rap; and "The
Game" is a mid-tempo jam about how street life is a combat zone and living
is a game. Overall, Go Rin No Sho is some fresh sh-- and is dope.
Daddy Mack Blues Band • Fix It When I Can
Inside Memphis/High Water Recording Company
Down home blues that brings blues in a new direction. All the members of
the Daddy Mack Blues Band played at one time or another in the urban blues
band from the 1970s, the Fieldstones. Raw blues that even B.B. King, Muddy
Waters, or Albert King would be proud of. When you listen to the music,
you realize that musically the Daddy Mack Blues Bands tries to make the
listener appreciate what the blues is. Highlights include the blues jam
"The Ghetto," the sharp playing on "Razor Blade," and the soon-to-be-classic
"It's Almost Time To Leave (Stealing Your Love Tonight)." If you need a
release to help you out with your case of blues, then this is your release.
Rhythm Trip • Return of Da Dragon
Digital Dimension Entertainment
The new breed of rapcore has made a major impact of the music world via
the success of Kid Rock, Everlast, Limp Bizket, and Korn... well, add Rhythm
Trip to that list, for this band presents a sound which has not heard since
the first wave of rapcore in 1988 with The Metal M.C.'s and the White Boyz.
of Da Dragon has grooves that even Public Enemy would be proud of,
especially on "Mznik (Machine Mix)" with its "Don't Believe The Hype" flow,
"Goddess" reminds one of Living Colour, and "Boogie Da Bang Bang" which
contains a transfusion of the Knight Rider theme could easily have
been done by Anthrax or SOD. The dragon has returned, and Rhythm Trip is
Sister Carol • The Original Womb-Man
Tuff Gong International
Rasta with a female flair, Sister Carol has the sound which most non-reggae
people may be familiar with on Vitamin C's hit "Smile." But Sister Carol
is authentic Kingston groove via 16 pure rasta ragamuffin tunes. After
a careful listening, Sister Carol is very spiritual and moving. Major standout
tracks include "Opportunities," "Herbal Is Natural," and "I-Sis Apella."
In overview, if you need a good fixing of rasta-funk/reggae, then give
Sister Carol a good listening to.
Brainstorm • The Technology of Art
Rock Dog Records
Progressive rock and roll similar to ELP or Brian Eno yet more spacelike
in nature similar to Phillip Glass, Brainstorm appeals to your senses by
flowing ambient soundscapes into your speaker. This CD is divided into
three acts with 15 titled segments. There seems to be a storyline on how
technology is an art form that is lost in the mixture of sound. Brainstorm
creates one of the rare modern day electronic progression masterpieces
that flows into space and earth. If you are searching for an original creation
of progressive electronic music, please give Brainstorm a listening to.
Corey Cokes • Coreyography
Varunee Recording Group
Corey Cokes has produced a spoken word CD which is one of the best spoken
word CDs of today's modern era. Most of the material is devoted to the
street culture and the harsh reality of life. Corey Cokes is a genius,
for it appeals to the hip-hop culture, the street life, and life in general.
If you like some of spoken words on De La Soul releases, this release is
a killer release. So if you need to listen to some spoken words and street
poetry, then Corey Cokes would make you think of a beatnik poet of the
1960s yet is more harsh. Corey Cokes is one of the best spoken artists
in the world.
Reel Big Fish • Everything Sucks
Finally the rare first record of Reel Big Fish so fans of the band don't
have to pay close to $400 for an original or buy a CD-R of the release
from $50... now everyone can afford to hear the music that made this band
famous. Contains all the original tracks from the original including "Fo'
Head," "Beer," "Snoop Dog, Baby," "Skatantic," and "**** Yourself," which
the band still plays live. But the band decided to include two bonus tracks
-- the "lost recordings" of "Superhero #5" and "I'm Her Man" -- along with
a cool interactive selection that has tons of info about the band and includes
the video to "Everything Sucks." Reel Big Fish has come a long way since
these recordings, but this release is a plus to any collection of ska and
Drippin' Honey • Drip Drip
Beatville Records/Me and My Records
Out of Holland comes Drippin' Honey who, in the vein of the 1980s version
of the Honeydrippers, have created a memorable CD with an uptempo R&B
influenced blues one might hear at a Harley outing. Rarely comes a new
blues outfit that molds traditional styles of blues with modern production
skills. Most of the songs are uptempo and make you want to drink a Heinie.
One must be impressed with their covers of Muddy Waters' "Cross Eyed Cat"
and Willie Dixon's "Sit Down Baby" plus the band's original gems "Blood
Moon" has a punk-a-blues flair and would never be heard on the radio due
to its raunchy lyrics; plus the untitled bonus track has a spaced blued
style and actually sounds like a Dave Matthews-meets-Santana piece. A keeper.
Dokken • Erase The Slate
Longtime metal fans from the 1980s are aware of this great metal band which
now is Don Dokken on lead vocals, Jeff Pilson on bass/vocals/acoustic guitars/piano/mellotron/keyboards,
Mick Brown on drums/percussion/vocals, and Reb Beach (Winger), who appeared
recently on the Teenage Girls debut CD, on guitars. Musically, Dokken has
grown into a great band, and this release still has a 1980s feel to it.
The 11 tracks are great sounding musically. The keys to the release are
"Change The World," which has an awesome acoustic guitar sound in the middle
of it, and the cover of the Three Dog Night classic "One." Some people
may say that Dokken is dead, but to this reviewer Dokken rocks. Great release
for the true metal fan in us all.
The Amazing Crowns • Royal
Time Bomb Recordings
The Amazing Crowns are back with some of the best greasabilly ever recorded.
Contains strong elements that would make the pioneers of rock proud, especially
Johnny Brunette, Billy Haley and The Comets, and Buddy Holly. Hailing from
the royal land of Providence, RI, The Amazing Crowns are still loyal to
the royal with these 14 tracks which the band have performed during the
past year live in their set, and fans of The Amazing Crowns will be impressed
with the CD. Highlights include "Mr. Fix-It" with its strong background
harmonies, "Perfect Sin" with its great stand up bass work, "Losing Streak"
about being out of your luck, "Halos & Horns" with its high paced bass
work, and "Greasy" which is the album's best track, for it gets down to
the spirit of the band and proves that rockabilly is still alive. Get royal
in a royal land with one of the most royal bands that are still loyal to
royal -- The Amazing Crowns, who prove that "Flipping Coins" can be a ballad.
Awesome and royal.
Monsieur Leroc • Le Slow Motion Boogie Woogie
>From Paris comes the latest sound to invade the Skunk/Cornerstone R.A.S.
family. 10 tracks of experimental dub infested jazz mixed with a splash
of hip-hop. Monsieur Leroc brings a sound which is trippy like Philip Glass
yet has a vibe of the techno hip-hop sound at points. Easily one of the
best records ever made to the world. With titles such as "I Think I." "Une
Boogie Pour Faye," "Jazzz," and "Full Custom Sack Pt. 1," one can see the
wrapped sound of the master at work. So if you are interested in the future
of music, this performer is da bomb. Simply one of the best releases
to come out this year. Two thumbs up.
Canned Heat • The Boogie House Tapes
Finally some of the lost and rare tapes from the early years of Canned
Heat have resurfaced to the public. This collection has 29 tracks culled
various masters and acetates from 1967 to 1976. This is probably the most
intense collection ever assembled from Canned Heat from that era and may
be the last compilation of material from that time period. Take a listen
to "These boots are made for... (studio joke)" and you can see the humor
which the band had in the studio. Also included is a version of "On Road
Again" which is a rare version from the old Playboy After Dark TV
show from 1969. Also check out the "Reefer Blues" which is included here
from the "Kickapoo Creek Festival" which proves that the band was a little
controversial yet did a great blues rocker. It is great to hear some of
these performances from a band which made its name at Woodstock and is
one of the best blues rock bands ever. Very worth checking out this great
release for it is pure Canned Heat... so hot and cool.
Earth Crisis • Sither
What can be said about the mighty Earth Crisis that has not been said before...
but on Sither the band polishes up their sound to create a brutal
release of hardcore. Too extreme to control, Earth Crisis delivers what
is their best album to date. If you like chunky, hard driven hardcore with
a major lethal dose of metal, then pick up Sither, for it has 14
tracks that would make you want to get into the pit and slam. Lyrically,
this band makes you think, and they are back to their roots in the Victory
camp after leaving for a few releases. Check out "Nemesis" or "Killing
Brain Cells"... you know that Earth Crisis means business. Could be in
the running for the best hardcore release of the year.
NSync • "It's Gonna Be Me" CD single
Another great song from the 7-time platinum album No Strings Attached
which proves that this boy band is still great. This song is a gem, for
it has that catchy vibe that makes you want to sing along with the release.
"It's Gonna Be Me" has a great harmony and excellent back beats which make
you want to get up and dance yet is a very romantic plea to the one you
love. One senses that this song is destined to be remixed for the clubs
due to the instrumentation. Overall, this is another chart topper for NSync...
a #1 hit.
(hed) Planet Earth • Music From Broke
The band formerly known as (hed)PE have seem to change there name for the
Y2K era to (hed) Planet Earth. After years of hard work and the success
of last year's Ozz Fest, the band has a new sound which demonstrates that
they are going to be a major force to reckon with. On this sampler from
the band's upcoming album Broke, the band transforms their sound
to new groove vibe hip-hop metalcore, which is mellow yet forceful. "Killing
Time" has a Korn-ish a la 24-7 Spyz vibe to it and rocks with a catchy
chorus over angsty, hateful guitars. "Bartender" is def, for it has a sort
of Sly and the Family Stone's "Celebrate" chorus mixed with a sort of metallic
Korn's "Children of Korn" guitar work... and it's an instant classic in
the vein of old Red Hot Chili Peppers combined with Incubus. "I Got You"
could be the first single, for it has that poppy rock radio sound that
is currently in fashion... great song and I got you. The last track on
this sampler is "Waiting To Die," a techno like hardcore rap song which
would make Soulfly or System of a Down rocks, and there's a great reference
to NWA's "F*ck The Police" in the song. Overall, (hed) Planet Earth totally
rocks planet earth.
Glassjaw • Promo 495 cassette single
Contains two tracks highlighting the deranged raw power of this band. Glassjaw
delivers an upper right hook and a knockout punch. The two tunes included
here are "Pretty Lush" and "When One Eight Becomes Two Zeros." Vocals on
both are very melodic yet have a harsh scream here and there. Guitar work
is sort of Blink 182-ish mixed with a dose of power metal. Overall these
two songs demonstrate a band that really wants to obtain mainstream listeners
and may find an audience with punk, metal, and rock fans alike. Glassjaw
will be ready to break your jaw, for they are that good.
Taproot • Songs from the Upcoming Album
Taproot are hot on this years Ozz Fest 2000 tour, and this cassette highlights
two tunes from their album Gift. "Smile" has sort of a Sevendust
fused with Floydish yet Toolish yet death metal-like sound and is sure
to be a pit standard. Meanwhile, "Mentobe" starts out technoish then transforms
into a rapcore tune. Taproot's sound is great and should please the metalhead
in all of us. Simply put, Taproot's gift to the world is to make metal
a force to be reckoned with, and they are.
Mudvayne • L.D. 50
Epic/No Name Recordings
>From the press photos of this band, one should be scared and if you are
scared then do not buy this release for it would make your warped mind
wander into a deep, depressed state of mind. Mudvayne plays heavy, harder
than a diamond metal with a splash of funk-groove and death in the mix.
For almost 70 minutes, the band jams out with violent harsh sounds that
will make the hair stand up on your arm. Tracks that will shock you are
"Severed," "Dig," "Mutanis Mutandis," and "Pharmaecopia." In fact, all
17 tracks make an impression on you which melts your warped head into a
crazy slime of a jellylike substance. If you like Slipknot, then give these
masters of shock some visual delight, for Mudvayne will be the band which
will make you rock til you get shock. F'n great release to spit out at
Boiler Room • Sampler
Containing two songs from their Roadrunner debut Can't Breathe,
this sampler is very impressive, for it has "Do It Again" which sounds
a little like Sevendust but has a sound mix that Rage would be proud of.
Very impressive, especially with the scratch work on the guitar. The other
tune "Superficial" has a different vibe all together, for it is heavy yet
mellow. The chug-a-chug guitar lick makes the song groove. Boiler Room
is going to make its mark in the metal marketplace, so watch out for the
Verbow • "New History" CD single
550 Music/Epic Records
Verbow's "New History" is a song which has that catchy pop vibe yet is
soothing due to the odd instrumentation with a cello in it. This CD has
a remix of the song which is slightly more danceable and the original but
misses out a little. If you must purchase this song... please buy the album,
for it has the album version and that is all you really need. One must
suggest that the band find some techno producer to remix the tune, for
it could easily be transformed into a dance tune. Overall, a weak single
from a good band.
Shutdown • Few and Far Between
Brooklyn style hardcore from this band whom grown a lot since their last
release on Victory, Against All Odds. Shutdown is Mark Scondotto
on vocals, Steve DellaCroce on guitar, Dion DeNardo on bass, and Jimmy
McCormack on drums. Shutdown plays impressive hardcore that has signature
breakdowns and chunky chug-a-lug guitars that make each song stand apart
from the next song. If you want to hear a band that is not afraid to make
a mark on the world and make you think of unity, standing up for your morals
and rights, and living a life which you can be proud of and deserve, Shutdown
will help you focus on those ideas and make you grow to be a better person.
Contains 12 aggressive tunes that rock, especially the title tune with
guest vocalist Freddy Cricien of Madball, and the tunes "Homestretch"
and "Afraid To Fall" which features Mark's brothers, Mike (of Inhuman)
and Jon. If you need more bang for your buck... pick up this release, for
Grey Area • Fanbelt Algebra
All right, finally a band which is true to its punk roots. Remember when
punk was cool and fresh and poppy? Well, Grey Area does the old school
punk in a new school way. Sort of like a Blink 182, but Grey Area is the
original punk for the 2000s. "Sour Grapes" is destined to a song which
the crowd is going to make a sing-along. "So Much More" has equal strength.
In fact... all 12 tunes are awesome. If you need to hear some real pop
punk... get off your lazy sod and run to your record store and pick up
CJSS • Kings of the World
CJSS is David T. Chastain on lead guitar, keyboards, and backing vocals,
Russell Jenkins on lead and backing vocals, Mike Simmerhorm on bass, and
Lee Sharp on drums and percussion. It has been years since a good power
metal album has been released, and this album by CJSS is the album that
will make technical metal come back in the spotlight again. CJSS, to those
who have been in the metal scene, has been around since the late 1980s
and never officially broken up, but the members drifted to do their own
things in the 1990s. But CJSS is back to the sound that they are famous
for, and on Kings of the World they prove that the flair has never
gone away. If you like Queensryche, Dream Theater, or old 1980s metal,
you should check out this release, for CJSS does some awesome riffs and
power chords. Standout tracks are "The Executioner's Song," the Chastain
instrumental "The End of the Rainbow," and the band cover of the classic
Ian Anderson tune "Locomotive Breath." CJSS is rocks 'til you drop.
Deep • Pieces of Nothing
A strong release from this brutal metal band. Vocals have a harsh feeling,
sort of death-like, while the music is intense, violent backlashing of
speed guitars, sonic drums, and extreme bass. 10 tracks that would rip
you apart and shed some skin. Deep delivers a dark meaning of the world
yet is a refreshing approach due to the technical elements fused in it.
Recommended must-listen tracks are "Point" and "Hear Their Own." Deep proves
that deep dark metal rocks.
NOTE: Due to space constraints, the following reviews were not included
in the print edition of Geoff Wilbur's Renegade Newsletter.
These reviews are only available here in the online edition.
Jars of Clay • "Unforgetful You" CD-5
The band best known for "Flood" comes back with a strong song, which is
from their album If I Left The Zoo and appears on the Drive Me
Crazy motion picture soundtrack. The song is presented here in two
versions... one starts out with a cold start and the other starts out with
a party effect. The song is uptempo and very danceable and very spiritual
and has that modern rock vibe. One must admire the distorted keyboards
in the mix with the harmonies. Jars of Clay prove that they are much more
than a one hit wonder and continue to make progress as they grow. Overall
a great song.
NSync • "Bye Bye Bye"
Most people have already heard this single by this smash teen heartthrob
band, but for those who may have been tuned off by this band for their
pop appeal, check them out again. First of all, the music actually has
a deep funk groove fused with a harmonious beat. Second, the song is about
breaking up with your girlfriend; hence "Bye Bye Bye." Third, the use of
the strings overture mixed with the keyboards and bass makes the song appeal
to a huge audience. At first, one might not admit that they actually own
an NSync CD, but if the rest of their new album No Strings Attached
is like this, NSync has proven that they are a band with a great future
ahead of them.
Mortiis • Crypt Of The Wicked
Listening to the morbid sounds of Mortiis, one must be impressed by the
layers of neo-classical influenced keyboards mixed with Gothic like overtones.
Also, Mortiis created a chilling vibe throughout this compact disc. Progression
diversity is present from the music, which is molding in ancient northern
European folklore vibe. Sounds like something which one may have heard
during the Viking wars if keyboards were present. Also the titles are in
ancient Swedish or Finnish or old Germanic tongues and have a folklore
story -- "Vandreen's Sang (The Song of The Wander)," "Fanget, I Krysta:
(Captured In Crystal)," "Stienerfedt (Starborn)," and "Trollmanneust Krypt
(The Crypt of The Wizard)." Creating 10 tracks of atmospheric doom, Mortiis
proves to the world that he is mastermind of music. So if you want to listen
to some of the best atmospheric doom is the world, check out this release.
The Step Kings • "Vibe"/"Imbalance"
This band really proves how hard work plays off. Hailing from New Jersey,
The Step Kings played all over the east coast of the Untied States at any
show they could get their hands on. Well, after years on the road, The
Step Kings finally got signed to the monster independent label Roadrunner
Records and are planning to release their debut album in the spring of
2000. This cassette single serves as a preview of what the new release
is going to sound like, and if the rest of the CD is like this...world
look out. The Step Kings combine hardcore and metal on these two songs,
with "Vibe" being the more agressive of the two due to its hard rocking
guitar riffs and intense drumming, while "Imbalance" grooves and rocks
with the soon-to-be-classic Step Kings ching-a-chug beat.
Sloppy Meateaters • Shameless Self-Promotion
Orange Peel Records, P.O. Box 15207, Fremont, CA 94530
Sloppy Meateaters play pop-punk and do some of the best. One can really
relate to this band, for this three-piece delivers material that is way
better than some of the material which major bands put out on major labels.
If you like chugga guitars, hard bass, and understandable vocals, then
Sloppy Meateaters are your band. Southern Cali punk which blows Green Day
and Blink-182 away... check out the humorous "I Sing Like A Girl" and "A
Dumb Guy in a Stupid Band" and you can see what the band is about. Wonder
if "Shonka Tonk" is an attack against Blink-182, for it has a riff like
"All The Small Things"... mmm. 12 tracks plus a special bonus unlisted
track 13 which is a cover of The Queers "Love." Sloppy Meateaters is the
band which is going to make kids release that punk is not dead. Buy...
File Underwater • flu'id
Baby Factory, 1217 N. Milwaukee Ave., Chicago, IL 60622
File Underwater presents a great release of neo-industrial music that delivers
some great production work. When I was listening to this release, the mood
of the music delivered a sober mood yet delivers some mixed emotions...
somewhat like The Smiths' Morrissey meeting Trent Reznor to create a morbid
sound. File Underwater is guitarist known just as Leisel and Don Bodin.
File Underwater demonstrates that music can be redefined into a hyperselection
of elemental diversion that moods into a chemical imbalance that affects
your cranium to soak up a transcendentalist transfusion. Psychedelic illusions
are within the music; File Underwater are the best band in the world that
makes neo-industrial music. If you like bands like Skinny Puppy, Godless,
NIN, and Prick, then File Underwater is your cup of tea. Garret Hammond
of Prick even provides all the drum tracks on the release... he can be
the unannounced third member of the band. If you listen to the whole
CD in one sitting, you would have to listen to it again and again. But
if you just want to hear what the band is all about listen to "Malifcent's
Dream," "Strip," and "Acropolis." Don Bodin produced a classic which must
be add to your collection of electronic music, for flu'id is a classic
step in the world of production.
Shawn Amos • Harlem
They call this music "pure hillbilly soul," but those words do not describe
the true passion which Shawn Amos delivers in these tunes. Most of the
tunes are southern based in content, especially "Vicksburg," "Southern
Man" (the Neil Young classic which has new meaning when Shawn Amos decided
to add a sample of Johnny Lee Moore & 12 Mississippi Penitentiary
Convicts), "Eighteen Hammers" and "Blackface." If you are searching for
today's modern day blues man with a deep root of folk and country... Shawn
Amos is the man which Neil Young, Bob Dylan, and Muddy Waters should be
proud of. Shawn Amos is the future of storytelling music for the masses
and should have a wide mainstream appeal because it has heart to it.
Rev. Neil Down • American Friend
Burnbarrel Records, P.O. Box 121, Skagwaym, AK 99840
Add Rev. Neil Down along the side of the other reverends of rock-a-billy
Rev. Billy C. Wirtz and Rev. Horton Heat. This release is blues based rock-a-billy
which Rev. Neil Down gets to the roots of Americana music that brightens
the love of the transitional music in a scene of making icons in musical
paradise. Rev. Neil Down gets great aid with his rock-a-billy with the
legendary Jerry Scheff whom credits included sessions with Elvis Presley,
the other Elvis (Costello), Bob Dylan, Johnny Cash, and Roy Orbison to
name a few. On American Friend, soon to be modern day standards are included
including "Keystone Lake," "Bet You Really Get Around," and "The Trench"
will make this release locked in your player for a long time. For those
modern rebel whom like the Amazing Crowns... "The Trench" would come to
your liking. The best release to come from the Great White North in year.
Rev. Neil Down knows his music and hopes the world would like it too.
The Larry Baeder Group featuring Charlie Torres & Haracio Hernandez
• Maximo Strut
New Moon Blues, P.O. Box 3214, Chapel Hill, NC 27515-3214
The Larry Baeder Group takes an interesting approach to the blues by fusing
it with funk, latino, and soul music similiar to what Canned Heat was trying
to do in the late 1960s. One must also be impressed that 13 of the 14 tracks
were written by the group. The only number that was not written by the
band was the Earl Miller composition "Don't Drink Muddy Water." The
"Dobro Interlude" which flows into the haunting almost Allman Brothers
sounding blues number "Tell All the World, John" creates a great contrast.
The 10:33 epic "Don't Mess With Fate" proves that the band can do an extended
slow blues jam. The somewhat Santanna sounding "New York - Havana Blues"
is very appealing to the listener. But the two "Funk Interludes" #1 and
#2 proves that this band can groove with the best. Overall this release
is a new foundation of the blues.
Red Hot Chili Peppers • Californication
Warner Bros. Records
John Frusicante is back in the band, and Californication is the
strongest release from the Red Hot Chili Peppers in years. The material
which Anthony Kiedas, Flea, Chad Smith, and John have created reminds one
of the Blood, Sugar, Sex, and Magik era of the band while being
more refreshing modern. "Scar Tissue" has that sort of "Under The Bridge"
feeling due to its groove. "Around The World" contains a groove that fans
of Geogre Clinton would love. "Right On Time" has that sort of The Kinks
"Wish I Could Fly Like Superman" bass line fused with Tom Tom Club beat.
"Road Trippin" is about how hard life on the road can be. The Red Hot Chili
Peppers continue to grow a strong fan base since 1983 when they were playing
the Los Angeles bar scene til today's big arena tours, proving that this
band is still ahead of its time. Woodstock '94 and Woodstock '99 are now
in the history books, and The Red Hot Chili Peppers were there and are
still the rocking the world.
Galactic • Late For The Future
The groove rocking band who played on the H.O.R.D.E. tour in the past shines
brightly on this CD, combining elements of jazz, blues, and rock to create
a sound which has not been heard in years... sort of a funky Miles Davis
jaming with Carlos Santana while Flea plays the bass and members of the
Dead sit in. Galactic really impressives the listener, especially if you
listen to this release on headphones to achieve its whole effect. The 13
songs demonstrate that this band is groove masters, especially on "Baker's
Dozen" and "Hit The Wall." Overall, the continous groove makes you want
to dance or completely chill out. Galactic proves that vocals are secondary
to the wall of sound presented, for out of the 13, only 4 tunes have vocals.
"Century Boy" pays homage to Frank Zappa, for it has a Zappa sound; "Running
Man" has a sort of B.B. King blues vibe in the vocals; "Villified" combines
almost Bootsy Collins or Geogre Clinton vocal arrangement; and "Thrill"
almost sounds like vintage Ohio Players. Galactic is a band which is destined
to for a galactic following. Awesome.
Secret Hate • Pop Cult Vomit
Secret Hate been around since the early 1980s when they released their
infamous release Vegetables Dancing (a.k.a. the Green Album) for
Mike Wait's New Alliance Records. Secret Hate was a legendary punk band
in the southern California punk scence along side with the Meat Puppets,
Circle Jerks, Black Flag, and the Minutemen. Most of those bands made punk
rock history while Secret Hate slowly dissolved into punk rock folklore.
However, in 1996, an unknown band from Long Beach decided to pay homage
to the band by doing a cover of the Secret Hate song "Ballad of Johnny
Butt" for their self-titled MCA release. A lot of Sublime bands began
to search for material from Secret Hate. Members of the band decided to
reform and plan the 1998 Skunk Records Mex Fest in Mexico... Skunk Records
is the label that Sublime formed to release their music to the masses.
Skunk Records re-released Vegetable Dancing along with spilt 7"
with Das Klown in early 1999 and, in Cornerstone R.A.S. release, a 7" titled
"Radio Kills" in late 1999. Now Pop Cult Vomit has been released
as the band's first full-length containing 14 tracks devoted to how screwed
up the pop culture is. "Radio Kills" attacks the commercialism of
the radio, "To Speak of Love" is devoted to the religious vomit in the
world, "Love Enough 4/2" has that a groove that reminds
one of the new wave song and is devoted to an orgy, "Buckwheat o' Liberty"
sounds like the Dead Kennedys, and "Holy (Duck) Diver" reminds one of
a surf number on a bad acid trip. Overall the production of this release
is awesome and Rick Rubin. Geogre Martin, or Phil Spector proud. Secret
Hate is the band of the 2000s, and pleasecheck out the controversal cover
which might just get this band banned from some record stores.
So Plush • Sampler
So Plush has a sound similiar to Destiny's Child and En Vogue on this six
track sampler from their forthcoming debut album one can see where the
band is going. The first track is the 20 second intro which is basically
a disc jockey transforming the jam that follows into "It Ain't My Fault,"
which is the sampler's only complete tune. The next three joints are snippets
of "Things I Heard Before," "The Fact Is You Lied," and "He Loves
Me," which are all segued together as if done by a disc jockey. The
final track is the outro, which closes the sampler. Overall, So Plush is
very impressive, and this release should have marketed the band into the
next level of hot girl groups.
Daycare Swindlers • Testosterosa
Vile Beat Records
Chuga-chuga punk rock with fast beats mixed with a dash of ska... could
this be Op Ivy reborn for the thrid time? No, it is the Daycare Swindlers.
On Testosterosa, the band greatly improves via better production
and mix but still while having the raw energy which the band is noted for.
19 tunes that would make you want to mosh and pogo while you listen to
it. Highlights include the ska infested "Spy vs. Spy," the reggae like
beats of "She Devil Stomp," and the homage to America's most noted modern
day porno star "Jenna Jameson" and her movies. If "Jenna Jameson" does
not make the Howard Stern Show... nothing will. Daycare Swindlers
prove that punk is not dead, and this release is the one of the best releases
since The Clash's Black Market Clash. Buy it or die.
Malevolent Creation • Manifestation
Sheer brutality is what best describes Malevolent Creation, for this band
plays aggressive death metal with heavy instrumentation. If you need a
release to pump you up, then this is it. Lyrically, Malevolent Creation
focuses on the darker side of life with songs such as "Impaled Existence,"
"Manic Demise," and "Fine Art of Murder" showing the bleekness of today's
dismal world. Actually, this band tries to make you think that your life
is much better due to all the turmoil in it. Check out "Alliance or War"
and "Mass Graves" to see what is going on. Malevolent Creation: simply
put, it is death music at its finest.
Johnnie Taylor • "I Love You Lady" CD Single
Romantic song devoted to loving your lady, and Johnnie Taylor makes the
listener envision loving your special lady in my ways. Actually, this song
really affects the soul of the lover in all of us. One must love the way
they combine vintage keyboards in the mix to create an almost Staxx Records
style of recording from the 1960s. This song will make you want to say
"I Love You Lady" to your lady.
Tonya • "Gotta C U 2 Nite" CD single
J-Town Records, 3023 W. Northside Drive, Jackson, MS 39213
Could Tonya be the next Toni Braxton? One must think so. On her debut single
"Gotta C U 2 Nite," Tonya creates a smooth, romantic tune about making
love to your special person and relaxing with them. Vocal reminds one of
Toni Braxton, but the song is devoted to an extra-martial affair, yet it
is very romantic, for it is about one's love with a special person whom
you love, and you know that it is wrong yet you want to be with someone
whom you can't really have but you meet anyway. This single is hot and
deserves to have a couple listens-to due to all the layers in the tune,
especially the Zapp like vocals in hidden in the background. Tonya will
go on to greater things, for she is that gift. Please check this out and
be one of the first.
King Floyd • "Let's Call The Whole Thing Off " CD single
R&B legend King Floyd is back with a great tune which has harmonies
and a meledy that is relaxing to listen to. King Floyd tells it like it
is, for you must call off a relationship to make yourself clear. Love is
just too short for playing with one's heart. Special guest vocals by Zuri,
who really can hit the high notes, make the single all the more memorable.
King Floyd proves that he is only getting better with age, and he really
knows how to create a love song. A great song to hear what this master
is up to... a must for any R&B admirer.
Bobby Rush • "Hoochie Man (Radio Mix)" CD single
This is Bobby Rush's statement against all the hoochie mamas where he became
a hoochie man. Bobby is having fun on the town picking up young ladies
and partying all night 24/7. This is sort of the pimping-ain't-easy style
that grooves. Typical bluesman having fun with a hundred dollar bill while
partying down the strip on Friday night. So all you pimp daddys get on
the "Hoochie Man" trail and learn how to party. Great release that cooks...
a classic gem.