Friday New Releases – December 8th

The closer we get to Christmas, the fewer good new releases coming out.  That doesn’t mean that aren’t any, just fewer to choose from.  For me this week, there are only two Live albums I am interested in hearing and they are highlighted in Blue.  Let me know if there is anything you see that you like.  Have a great day!!

  • images  Collective Soul – Live – (Suretone Records):  One of my favorite bands from the 90’s and from Georgia.  I have followed them since their first single “Shine” way back in 1993 and they haven’t disappointed me ever!!  I am looking forward to a live album as I don’t have one of those in my collection for them.

  • 61KX5d0LirL._SY300_QL70_  Deep Purple – The Infinite Live Recordings, Vol. 1 – (earMusic):  Deep Purple has been killing it this past year with a new album and so many treats associated with that new album. Now we have a live album as well.  That is all I need to hear.  Thanks and turn it up!!

  • 91G9cZ63fOL._SX522_  Circus of Power – Four – (Noize in the Attic)
  • download-1  Story of the Year – Wolves – (Story of the Year)
  • 61gxmQsSKGL._AC_US320_QL65_  Culture Club – Live at Wembley World Tour 2016 – (Cleopatra Music)
  • 619Oq4V4E1L._AC_US436_QL65_  Luke Bryan – What Makes You Country – (Capitol Records)
  • 91DPED-TXzL._AC_UL115_  Walker Hayes – boom. – (Monument Records)
  • 51qiaHny6mL._AC_US436_QL65_  Belle and Sebastian – How to Solve Our Human Problems Part 1 E.P. – (Matador)

Friday New Releases – December 1st

We are now in December and only 24 more days until Christmas.  Here are some great gifts to give…new album releases!!!  There is a wide variety of music this week so there might be something for everyone today.  My picks are highlighted in Blue.  What do you see that you like and want to get from Santa???  Let me know. Also, if you want to purchase an album, you can easily click on the link below the album and it will take you straight to iTunes.

  • 91wwrHTyssL._AC_UL115_  Chris Stapleton – From A Room: Volume 2 – (Mercury Nashville):  I am so glad there is a Volume 2 because ‘From A Room: Volume 1’ was sensational.  I am looking forward to what he taps into for this one because if it is anything like the outlaw country / southern rock vibe of the first one, you will be in for a treat.

  • 616S2tyrKrL._SS500  Down ‘N Outz – The Further Live Adventures of… – (Frontier Records):  Joe Elliott from Def Leppard returns with his side project that celebrates the music of Mott the Hoople, British Lions & Ian Hunter.  This time it is a live concert and another reminder of how great their music was.  It deserves to be celebrated.  As a Joe fan, no brainer for me.

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The Original Vs. The Cover – “Hurt”

This month’s ‘The Original Vs. The Cover’s focusing on the Nine Inch Nails Song “Hurt”.  The song is one of my favorite Nine Inch Nails songs and I am not a huge fan of the band, but this song always struck a chord with me.  However, it was the cover of this song by a gentleman who goes by the moniker of Johnny Cash that made me stop and pay attention to this song (maybe you have heard of him).  It was one of the most surprising song choices for Cash to cover, but damn! did he make it his own song.  Let’s start off with the Original version of “Hurt” by Nine Inch Nails.

NINE INCH NAILS:

The song, “Hurt”, was written by Nine Inch Nails front man Trent Reznor and is off their album ‘The Downward Spiral’.  For those not familiar with the band, their style is very industrial rock and has a very metalic sound.  This song is no different other than the slow, plodding pace of song.  It comes at you with such a sadness and a dark tone that you immediately feel the pain the singer is going through.  The opening lines define the song right out of the gate…”I hurt myself today / To see if I still feel”.

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Friday New Releases – November 17th

Happy Friday!  Next week is Thanksgiving here in the States and sadly, there isn’t a ton to be thankful for on this week’s releases except for the few new live releases from Iron Maiden, Jeff Lyne’s ELO and Black Sabbath.  Outside of that, I don’t really care too much.  I might give some a listen, but got get through these live albums first.  My choices are highlighted in Blue!  Let me know if anything tickles your fancy.

  • 61NVOd2PN1L._AC_US436_QL65_  Iron Maiden – The Book of Souls: The Live Chapter – (Iron Maiden LLP):  Of course any Iron Maiden live album is a welcome sight and this one is no different.  This will probably be first up on the drive in to work.  I know several of my loyal followers will be devouring this one as well.  You know who you are!!

  • 61UAzisoUHL._AC_US436_QL65_  Black Sabbath – The End – (Eagle Rock Entertainment): The Final Black Sabbath show was captured and now being released.  Not surprising that they are coming to an end, amazingly they lasted as long as they did.  I am interested to see how this show turned out and bid a final farewell to this icon of metal music.  For that alone, it is worth a spin!

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Friday New Releases – November 10th

Welcome to another Friday New Releases and this week is a biggie.  Why?  Because Taylor is finally releasing her long awaited new album.  I put it at the top because it will be the most played album in our house (I have two girls that love her).  But don’t fret!  There is plenty of other releases for everyone.  I have a ton of rock records that I can’t wait to spin and they are highlighted in Blue.  I hope there is something for you.  Enjoy!

  • 61fam+0-OYL._AC_US218_  Taylor Swift – Reputation – (Big Machine): Get ready because the old Taylor is DEAD!!  This is a new Taylor Swift and from what I have heard so far, I would agree.  Taylor is reinventing herself now with each new release and I don’t see it as a bad thing.  At least for me, the new songs are more interesting than the prior songs.  I actually might like this new direction.  We will see as I will definitely hear it enough to become familiar with it.

  • 61qd3pEQ1nL._AC_US218_  Sweet & Lynch – Unified – (Frontiers Records):  Now here is where I will begin.  Michael Sweet & George Lynch were brought together by Frontiers Records as one of their special projects and usually they end up as a one time deal, thankfully, this one is not. We are now given a second release and they are touring.  Maybe this will last a little while.  I always need more rock & roll.

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Friday New Releases – November 3rd

Can you believe we are in November already.  Christmas is just around the corner and with all the new releases today, what might be on your Christmas list?  I don’t really have anything from these releases that I am dying to have, but there are a couple I will give a listen to.  Not much in the rock world for me, it is all Pop.  The ones I am interested in at least listening to are highlighted in Blue as always.

If you want to buy any of the albums, I have tried to make it easy for you. Click on the link after each album and it will take you to iTunes and you can download the release with just a few clicks.

  • 51m6YjZEtOL._AC_US400_FMwebp_QL65_  Maroon 5 – Red Pill Blues – (222 Records/Interscope):  Maroon 5 brings us another record, but with the over saturation of Adam Levine on TV with the Voice and the lack of greatness from the singles so far I am not overly excited.  However, I have been a huge fan since the beginning so it will get listened to.  I hope there are songs that only feature the band.  I am sick and DAMN!!! Tired of the releases for this album so far that feature another artist.  Why do songs today on Pop Radio have to be with someone else.  I don’t get and this is a topic for another time.  I do like “Cold” though.

  • 51-yr3+L5-L._AC_US436_QL65_  Sam Smith – The Thrill of It All – (Capitol Records):  Finally the voice of Sam Smith is back with some new music.  I know my oldest loves him and I have to admit he has a nice voice.  I will give it a spin and see what he has to offer.  The first two promotional songs have been good.

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Friday New Releases – October 27th

Welcome to the last Friday of October and the last set of new releases for the month.  Halloween is coming up in a few days and maybe there is something on here that will be a treat for you…or maybe you buy it, it sucks and then it is a trick…either way I hope there is something for you.  The ones I am interested in are highlight in Blue.

  • 61M1TfV-VoL._AC_US218_  Stereophonics – Scream Above the Sounds – (Stereophonics / Parlophone):  These Welsh boys are back with another new album.  After 20 years together, they haven’t missed a beat.  They are on a steady diet of one new album every two years and without fail, he were are with their latest.  If you don’t know them, check them out and see why they are top of my list this week.

  • download  Red – Gone – (Provident Label Group):  This Christian metal band is straying from their Christian roots with this album and delivering a mainstream rock record.  They even do a Sia cover on the album.  This could be interesting.  I will definitely cue this one up as well,

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Shania Twain – ‘Now’ – Album Review

After 15 years since her last studio album, Shania Twain is finally back with a brand new album called ‘Now’.  My love for Shania dates back to the 90’s with her smash hit album, ‘The Woman in Me’.  From there on, I was hooked.  The deathly good looks and that amazing voice was a combination I couldn’t resist.

She has been through a lot since her last album…a divorce from her partner in music crime, Robert John “Mutt” Lange, to vocal problems resulting from Lyme Disease and dysphonia.  She has persevered and is now back on to the music scene.

Two years ago she embarked on a comeback tour even though she didn’t have an album.  My wife and I were able to see her on that tour and her show was spectacular.  My wife and I are such big fans, we even had the song “From this Moment” played at our wedding. So, a new album from her is more than welcomed in my family.

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Well, that was until we heard the first single, “Life’s About to Get Good”.  To say this song is bad, would be mean.  To say this song was good, would be lying.  It lies somewhere in between.  As much as I dislike this song, sadly, it is one of the better songs on the album.  If you like old Shania and don’t want her to change, then you might like this song.  For me, it was boring and lyrically awful. The song has a real CHESSE factor to it.  I will give her this song and I won’t delete it only because it is better than most and she did release it as a single.  The song hasn’t been performing very well since its release proving a little of how I feel might be what other people think as well.

There are a couple good songs on the album, the next one being her latest release and the opening track “Swingin’ With My Eyes Closed”.  This is classic Shania,  yet in a good way.  This one is definitely Country tinged and is everything you love about her.  It is not my favorite song on the album, but it is pretty darn close.

My favorite song on the album is “Roll Me On the River”.  What I like about this song is its difference from everything else on the album.  It is the most original and takes Shania in a different path which is the approach this album should have taken for the whole thing as we are 15 years later and she is basically trying to do the same thing she did then “now”.  The album is titled “NOW”, shouldn’t the songs feel like they are now in the present day.  There is a heavy drum beat and takes on a darker tone musically.  She delivers the lyrics slower and more deliberately.  This song is what the album title reflects.  It is a modern song.  It isn’t country, it is a little more rock.

One thing this album was going to show me was if the myth about Mutt being the puppet master, pulling her strings on her albums as he produced and help write her three biggest albums, was true.  After spending a little time with the album, I feel that myth was warranted.  The songs on this album lack any lyrical development and good production.  Mutt was a master at developing lyrical phrasing.  Go back and listen to her earlier albums and even go back and listen to Def Leppard interview about Mutt.  He felt the way the words sounded were more important than the words themselves.  They definitely don’t take this approach with the lyrics on this album.

One prime example is the song “Poor Me”.  The song is a play on the words of her life being so hard and she went through so much…oh poor me! And then Pour Me a drink.  In theory, this song is brilliant play on those two sayings.  Execution is completely different.  Lyrically the song is a complete miss. What could have been turned into a big hit with Mutt just kinda whimpers out into forgettable and boring.

Since I was listening to the deluxe edition and there are 16 songs, I won’t go through all of them.  I have highlighted the ones I like above and I don’t feel there is any need to go through each individual song as they all fall under the same category as boring, cheesy and lyrically lacking.  The songs aren’t overly varied as they will hint mostly towards country and pop.  You get some upbeat tunes and some slower ballads, but they are all missing that pop, that right production and memorable & clever lyrics.

My wife and I even listened to the album together and when the album, she turned to me and went…ehh!  Which spoke volumes to me.  That is when I went and went through the album several more times on my own to see if it gets better with each listen, but it didn’t. I because more difficult with the exception a few songs I already mentioned.  Here is where I stand on whether a song is a Keeper or needs to be deleted.

Track Listing:

  1. “Swingin’ With My Eyes Closed” – Keeper
  2. “Home Now” – Delete
  3. “Light of My Life” – Delete
  4. “Poor Me” – Delete
  5. “Who’s Gonna Be Your Girl” – Delete
  6. “More Fun” – Delete
  7. “I’m Alright” – Delete
  8. “Let’s Kiss and Make Up” – Delete
  9. “Where Do You Think You’re Going” – Delete
  10. “Roll Me On the River” – Keeper
  11. “We Got Something They Don’t” – Delete
  12. “Because of You” – Delete
  13. “You Can’t Buy Love” – Delete
  14. “Life’s About to Get Good” – Keeper
  15. “Soldier” – Delete
  16. “All in All” – Delete

3 keepers out 16 songs – 19% (1 out 5 stars) As much as I have loved Shania, this was hard for me to listen to and to write about.  I was so hoping for a grand return.  I believe what I realized about the album is it is missing the FUN of her previous albums.  It is like your crazyass best friend in college went and grew up and became a boring adult.

Go listen for yourself and you judge.  My expectations might have been too high and so anything would be a let down…but I don’t think that is the case.  Let me know what you think.  Thanks.

Friday New Releases – October 20th

October is flying by and there are a bunch of new ones available this week…even Christmas albums if you are so inclined.  There are some brand new bands, some old favorites and some fabulous reissues/deluxe editions.  My choices are highlighted in Blue.  Let me know which ones you are interested in with a comment below.  Thanks and have a great weekend.

  • 61tzU2GB7VL._AC_US160_  Sons of Apollo – Pyschotic Symphony – (Inside Out Music):  Another supergroup and another one featuring Billy Sheehan and Mike Portnoy.  If you liked in The Winery Dogs, this is not the Winery Dogs.  This is a much heavier band with Jeff Scott Soto on lead vocals rather than Richie Kotzen.  Also on the record is Bumblefoot on guitar and Derek Sherinian that make this a massive group with a massive sound.  Can’t wait to dive into this one.

  • 51TQWYRXviL._AC_US218_  Europe – Walk the Earth – (Silver Lining Music):  Europe is still putting out quality albums after 35+ years in the business.  The took most of the 90’s off, but came roar back in the 2000’s and have been non-stop ever since.  I have held off from listening to anything on this one yet as I want to take it in all at once.

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Friday New Releases – October 13th

Here we are on another Friday and another week of great releases.  But before I get into that I just noticed that this is my 400th post since I started.  Crazy to think it I have been able to think of that many things to write about and that people still come to check out the site.  Pretty cool.

Okay back to the post…If you like rock, there is a plethora of new music.  There is probably a little something for everyone.  My choices are highlighted in Blue.  Let me know what you are looking to pick up.  I hope you find something.  Have a great weekend.

  • 61ldUwPrdAL._AC_US218_  Revolution Saints – Light in the Dark – (Frontiers Records):  Frontiers Records has a knack for putting together little supergroups. Most of the time those supergroups only last one album.  Thankfully, Revolution Saints are back with record number two!!  Who is in Revolution Saints you may ask (please ask)?  Well, I am glad you asked…you get Jack Blades (Night Ranger and Damn Yankees), Deen Castronovo (Journey and Ozzy) and Doug Aldrich (Whitesnake, Dio, Dead Daisies).  The first album was spectacular and expect more of the same greatness.

  • 71ZApFbDTuL._AC_UL115_  Fozzy – Judas – (Century Media):  When you hear the name Chris Jericho, what is the first thing you think of???  Wrestling??  No, Heavy Metal Music.  Chris has been lead singer of Fozzy for 18 years and they are now on their seventh album with ‘Judas’.  As I always, I look forward to hearing what they bring to the table each time and this time is no different.

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