album review

iamking

REVIEW: Code Orange – ‘I Am King’

Artist: Code Orange
Album: I Am King
Genre: Hardcore
Label: Deathwish Inc.

Earlier this year, Code Orange dropped the ‘Kids’ off somewhere and said, “It’s just us now. Let’s get fucking crazy.”

Not that the band’s 2012 debut, Love is Love // Return to Dust, wasn’t balls to the wall bonkers, but I Am King demonstrates new levels of blatant belligerence and no holds barred intensity from the Pittsburgh-based four-piece, who have clearly matured beyond just a name change. This new release summons a raging, angst-ridden being from within the listener who then, with no regard for the safety …

Release-Artwork

REVIEW: Lumberjvck – ‘Jvckwood’ EP

Artist: Lumberjvck
Album: Jvckwood EP
Genre: Bass music
Label: Rottun Recordings

As heard during his live shows and mixes, Excision, Canada’s resident creator of skull-shaking dubstep, has quite the ear for electronic music of all varieties. Thus, it’s no surprise that his label, Rottun Recordings, is filled to the brim with rising talents from across the scene. After stumbling across a producer named Lumberjvck and realizing he was a part of said label, it took little convincing to listen to the teaser for his record, Jvckwood, and quickly becoming interested in hearing how it would flesh out in its …

ty-dolla-sign-sign-language-mixtape-review

REVIEW: Ty Dolla $ign – ‘$ign Language’

Artist: Ty Dolla Sign
Album: $ign Language
Genre: Hip-hop

After seven years of making people move with his original take on urban music, Ty Dolla $ign makes it clear that he is ready for the next level of stardom with $ign Language.

Most people in music today have made their money leveraging a signature sound and perfecting it again and again. Ty Dolla $ign did this quite a bit early on, but over the last two or three years the California native has been exploring the possibilities of urban music through a series of mixtape and EP releases. The …

andrea remondini

REVIEW: Andrea Remondini – ‘Non Sequitur’

Artist: Andrea Remondini
Album: Non Sequitur
Genre: Progressive, Classical, Instrumental

Andrea Remondini has been making music since he was 12 years old, for nearly 30 years now. He started by teaching himself to play piano and grew into a position at an Italian dance label, eventually working with some of the regions most talented DJs. However, with this lengthy past of musical endeavors behind him, it’s his most recent work that just might be his most impressive to date. Non Sequitur is Remondini’s 44-minute, single track, experimental electronic release, and the creator himself has stated, “I consider it to be …

adult-jazz-gist-is

REVIEW: Adult Jazz – ‘Gist Is’

Artist: Adult Jazz
Title: Gist Is
Genre: Indie
Label: Spare Thought

To Adult Jazz, their debut album is one part philosophical debate, one part literary exploration, and one part experimentation. To me, it would make an ideal soundtrack to an indie film (in the woods with lots of handheld camera shots). And I do mean that as a compliment.

Adult Jazz may not be on your radar yet, but they’ve been building momentum in Leeds for some time. Formed at Leeds University, the band (made up of Harry Burgess, Tom Howe, Tim Slater and Steven Wells) has been chipping …

mgid-uma-image-mtv

REVIEW: Wiz Khalifa – ‘Blacc Hollywood’

Artist: Wiz Khalifa
Album: Blacc Hollywood
Genre: Hip-Hop/Rap

On his third studio album, Wiz Khalifa has recorded a collection of potential radio singles that offer little cohesion, but plenty of reasons to have a good time.

Wiz Khalifa is to music what Doug Benson is to comedy; and by that I mean they’re both a variation of Cheech and Chong for a new generation. They’ve all managed to make careers out of embracing their love of marijuana. As long as they continue to carry the torch of weed, and all the things it can do to improve life for those …

aug

REVIEW: AUG – ‘Be Careful What You Wish For…’

Artist: AUG
Album: Be Careful What You Wish For…
Genre: Hard Rock, Metal

Are you looking to party like it’s the ’80s again? Do you miss the heydays of bands like Ratt and Scorpions?

If you answered ‘yes’ to one or both of these questions, then chances are you’ll dig New Jersey’s AUG and their newest album, Be Careful What You Wish For… Chock full of prime hair metal riffage, big vocal deliveries, and plenty of material that’ll force you to make a choice between chugging your beer or banging your head (or you can try to do both simultaneously …

heylel

REVIEW: Heylel – ‘Nebulae’

Artist: Heylel
Album: Nebulae
Genre: Progressive, Gothic Rock

Before being introduced to Heylel, I knew very few bands based out of Portugal, let alone any progressive metal ones. Now, after experiencing all 48 minutes of the band’s 11-track debut, I can safely say that progressive, Gothic rock is alive and well on the Iberian Peninsula.

Following an ethereal, Pink Floyd-ish intro, Heylel start to shred in “The Prophet,” the first full-band track on Nebulae, ultimately urging you to bang your head a tad here and there and/or get slightly hypnotized by the ambient tones in the mix.…

5 seconds of summer 5sos

REVIEW: 5 Seconds Of Summer – ’5 Seconds Of Summer’

Artist: 5 Seconds of Summer
Album: 5 Seconds Of Summer
Genre: Pop rock

Every few years a band comes along with a sound that caters to both the mainstream and alternative underground, but due to how they choose to market themselves certain ‘scene gatekeepers’ refuse to acknowledge the group’s work as anything other than radio fluff. In 2014, that band is known as 5 Seconds Of Summer, but try as some might to claim otherwise I am convinced there is no stopping their eventual rise to the top of the pop rock hierarchy.

Hailing from Australia with a sound inspired …

alive in standby

REVIEW: Alive In Standby – ‘Never Ending’

Artist: Alive in Standby
Album: Never Ending
Genre: Progressive Pop-Punk

Alive in Standby have long been known for being wise beyond their years, displaying complexity and technicality rarely seen from teenage musicians. In 2011, the group released an impressive EP entitled Dream Status, which captured the attention of listeners around the world and flung the band into a whirlwind of tours and well-deserved exposure. Now, almost three full years later, the band has emerged from their cocoon to present their first full-length, Never Ending.

Unlike their previous release, which consisted of a mix of brutal post-hardcore breakdowns and …

rx bandits

REVIEW: RX Bandits – ‘Gemini, Her Majesty’

Artist: RX Bandits
Album: Gemini, Her Majesty
Genre: Progressive Rock
Label: Mash Down Babylon Records

When it comes to bands similar to (and comprised of members from) The Sound Of Animals Fighting, I find myself amidst the conclusion that progressive-sounding genres are either automatically bewildering or strangely fascinating. The latter can fortunately be said about Gemini, Her Majesty, RX Bandits‘ seventh full-length album, out now via the band’s own MDB Records. Five long years after the release of their last record, Mandala, these California natives are finally back with new material that they’re currently supporting on tour …

joyce manor

REVIEW: Joyce Manor – ‘Never Hungover Again’

Artist: Joyce Manor
Album: Never Hungover Again
Genre: Pop punk, alternative
Label: Epitaph Records

A lot can change in 20 minutes. Clients could fire you. You could find true love. You could lose it. People can die. 20 minutes of reading can teach you something you’ll always remember. Your first kiss, touch, and love can fully bloom within 20 minutes. Liam Lynch famously wrote “United States of Whatever” in less than 20 minutes. You can finish any Joyce Manor album in under 20 minutes.

And that’s how I want to spend my 20 minutes.…