The Reverend Horton Heat (known by his parents as Jim Heath) is likely the only musician out there to be name-checked by Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins, John Lydon and Rob Zombie. But it makes sense, as no band since The Cramps has done a better job of fusing rockabilly with a sharp punk rock attitude. And his latest, “A Whole New Life,” shows he still has a foot planted firmly in each musical camp.
The band is at it’s best when they’re playing ferocious up-tempo
like “Perfect,” “Hate to See You Cry” or the New Orleans-styled
“Tchoupitoulas Street” (a song you’d swear was an old standard, but is
actually a Heath original). The album takes a brief detour on the Nick
cave-ish dirge “Don’t Let Go of Me,” the weakest track
here. But the band quickly corrects course for the remainder of the
record. They also throw in a great cover of “Viva Las Vegas” on the
closing track – a perfect ending to this 30-plus minute nostalgic ride.
This latest effort marks an even dozen albums for the trio and is just as solid as anything they’ve done so far. If you never dug their high-octane rockabilly/cocktail vibe, this record certainly isn’t going to change your mind. But, if you’re a fan, “Whole New Life” will only serve to reaffirm that admiration.
Reverend Horton Heat – Whole New Life / Victory Records / 2018 / Twitter
Chris Beer is able to bring forward late-era Johnny Cash and Mumford & Sons in his latest track, Remember to Forget. Blending together contemporary with a much more storied style (e.g. Snow Patrol), there is always a unique flair that is presented in Beer’s new effort. Where there is a seemingly straight-forward sound that is dominated during this single, listeners should really strap their headphones on and listen deeply to the dynamic that is established between the constituent instrumental parts. We’d love to hear more from Chris Beer in the future to see precisely how he grows and evolves.
Thomas Passon creates a bouncy EDM track that blends together industrial, drum and bass, and pop. Taking influences from U2 and Scooter, Passon can make a song that will appease fans wishing to dance as well as those music aficionados that want something a bit deeper and more comtemplative with their acts. Los’s usage of a guitar style out of the Weezer or post-grunge playbook alongside the perfection of electronic pop makes for something wholly different in Los. The scintillating sound of the effort’s last ten seconds may just be the most fun conclusion we’ve heard so far this year.
On Gottweist’s latest single Weight of the World, the band is able to create a hard and heavy track that calls back to Machine Head and Fear Factory while having just enough harmony to have listeners hanging on every world. The dynamic that is established by the band – guitars and drums rotating, a brutal set of vocals reigning over the composition – firmly ensconces the band among the top tier of heavy metal acts. The chugging, Coal Chamber meets Korn breakdown gives up ground to a sick, screamed-out vocal back and forth to conclude things. The sizzling guitar work puts an emphatic mark on the final seconds of the song.
ash.ØK has a new single – We’ll Waste Away – that deftly ties together EDM, pop, and a global sound into a sound that will bury itself deep into the minds and hearts of listeners. The electronic side of things (laid down with a fulfilling synth line) work nicely with a traditional, vocal-heavy component. A brief instrumental interlude at the three-minute mark keeps things fresh and bouncy, with a beat that will undoubtedly get listeners out on the dance floor. We’ll Waste Away has a truly world sound to it, owing to the impressive performance of Jomy George. Check out the video for We’ll Waste Away below the jump.
The Broke Royals are creating a tremendously catchy pop-rock track that is in-line for the holiday season. Emotive vocals, taut instrumentation, and a bit of sleigh bells make for a track that will stick with listeners long after the effort ceases to play. A secondary set of vocals allows for a back and forth that further lays out the single’s narrative.
The track is able to rise and fall, keeping listeners focused in on the gradual increases to the song’s momentum. With such palpable charisma weaved into the single, the Broke Royals are able to make one of the season’s first great holiday tracks.
Only Elvis could get away with having an album full of songs by a rising star recorded entirely for him. But that’s exactly what happened in the mid-1960s, with one of Elvis’ favorite songwriting duos, Ben Weisman and Sid Wayne, convinced an early-in-his-career Glen Campbell to record a dozen-and-a-half of their songs, so they could pitch them to The King. The tactic obviously worked as Elvis went on to record 12 of those songs, including “Clambake” and “Easy Come, Easy Go.” You’ve got to wonder if “Clambake,” one of the most fun songs on this record, was the inspiration for the entire Clambake movie Elvis would star in (and sing this song for the soundtrack) in 1967. Continue reading “Glen Campbell – Sings For The King”
The Finger Guns blend together Green Jelly with NoFX to make for something eminently catchy with their latest single $9.99 Quesadilla. The vocals whip in hints of the Descendants and Rise Against. Intense guitars, splashy drums, and a perfect bass line unite to make something that could hang right alongside The Ramones or Social Distortion. Just like a good quesadilla, there’s a tremendous amount of material stuck between the beginning and end of the effort. We’d love to hear more from The Finger Guns in the future, as they are one of the few acts that are keeping traditional punk music alive. We’ll be playing $9.99 Quesadilla throughout the winter. Continue reading “The Finger Guns – $9.99 Quesadilla”
On Masquerade, Boy Breaking Glass’s latest single, a tremendously emotional and impacting set of vocals are able to work with echoing guitars and eclectic drums to make for something that will stick with listeners long after the effort ceases to play. With a middle-point providing a few seconds of the band’s instrumental side, Masquerade is able to gradually gain speed in the single’s second half. Moving towards the finish line at the 2:40 mark, Boy Breaking Glass are able to slow things down and make for a bold, reverberating drum-heavy final minute. The band ends the song as emphatically as it began. Continue reading “Boy Breaking Glass – Masquerade”