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Press Release Roundup: July 14

posted July 20, 2017, 1:27 pm by Carlita | Filed Under Music News, Press Release Roundup, Releases | comment Leave a Comment

Music journalists get hit with a steady helping of press releases every day. For the music fan without that kind of sensory overload, a lot of music news can pass by without being seen. Every Friday, we will weed through and compile a list of some of the most intriguing press releases to come across our virtual desk.

POP Montreal


POP Montreal is very pleased to make a second line-up announcement in anticipation for the upcoming #SWEET16 edition of the festival. Highlights include experimental Argentinian songwriter Juana Molina, the avant-garde composer William Basinski, darling of the electro-pop underground John Maus, and one of the most devastating live performers on earth, Moor Mother, all of whom will also appear in conversation as part of the POP Symposium. Some of the newer acts not to be missed include Dirty Beaches frontman Alex Zhang Hungtai’s new project Love Theme, Polaris long lister and art pop warrior Lido Pimienta, as well Aba & Preach, the hilarious and phenomenal social commentators who have been keeping all of us Montrealers entertained and awake. Finally, hometown hero and LuckyMe recording artist Lunice will put on the party of the year and also partake in a special interactive beatmaking workshop that’s guaranteed to leave the audience inspired.

On the Art POP front, we’re thrilled to be collaborating with the Never Apart art space to present G.R.O.S.S., an all-female multimedia group show featuring artists Tricia Middleton, Nadine Faraj, Rebecca Storm and Jana Sterbak. The exhibit opens July 13th and will run throughout the festival, reveling in the guck, ooze, rot, leaks, and stray hairs and exploring the balance between revulsion and attraction.

To get tix, click HERE!

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Introducing: Ghostly Beard

posted July 18, 2017, 10:49 pm by CharlesMartel | Filed Under Introducing | comment Leave a Comment

In today’s world, it is easy to overlook the fact that what we now take as the norm was, not so very long ago, regarded as exotic. Patrick Talbot, who is Ghostly Beard, is an example of that. Born and brought up in the French Riviera of Franco-Italian background, he now lives in Montreal and is a Canadian citizen married to a British born woman. If there was an example of multi-culturalism in action then Talbot is surely it.

0010303515_10Read our review of “Infinite”

Talbot’s association with music began, as so often happens, with listening to what his family were listening to, in Talbot’s case, rock music listened to by his elder brothers. That early association led to a study of music. With no formal training, he admits to difficulty in reading music and largely taught himself. However, with limited opportunities in his native region, his musical journey could almost have died before it was born. Like many of us, there were local projects with unknown bands with big ideas but that was the sum of it. And then, again like so many of us, career, marriage and life in general got in the way and Talbot entered into a musical hiatus where, he freely confesses, there was a lot going wrong in his life. It was not until some fifteen years later that he began to move back to music. By this time, living in Canada, the opportunities were greater and Talbot once again began to write songs and record them. Read more

Press Release Roundup: June 30

posted July 1, 2017, 6:14 pm by Carlita | Filed Under Music News, Press Release Roundup, Releases | comment Leave a Comment

Music journalists get hit with a steady helping of press releases every day. For the music fan without that kind of sensory overload, a lot of music news can pass by without being seen. Every Friday, we will weed through and compile a list of some of the most intriguing press releases to come across our virtual desk.

Northern Nights Music Fest


Returning to the historic Cook’s Valley Campground, just 3 hours north of the San Francisco Bay Area from July 14-16, 2017, Northern Nights Music Festival is celebrating its 5th year of bringing incredible beats, river swims and positive vibes to the Emerald Triangle! NNMF is humbled and excited to announce that last year’s beloved and trailblazing Medical Marijuana Zone will not only be returning but is expanding into a full state-of-the-art “Tree Lounge” – an exclusive, innovative and educational oasis in the center of the festival. Smoke a bowl in the main bowl to headlining artists such as notorious Hip Hop collective Living Legends, Jai Wolf, Cherub, Big Wild, G Jones, Dirtwire, Random Rab,Justin Jay’s Fantastic Voyage, and 90+ more amazing acts and experience the magic of music, swimming and dancing amidst one of the most sought out destinations in the world – the California Redwoods.

The game is changing for how festivals will approach cannabis use in the future and Northern Nights is continuing their pioneering efforts to remove the stigma around Cannabis use, enhance the experience, and honor the incredibly rich Cannabis history of the festival’s region. The Cannabis Tree Lounge highlights Humboldt, Mendocino and Northern California cultivators that have been perfecting their trade behind the Redwood curtain for generations who are coming forward at the end of cannabis prohibition. The Tree Lounge will also include education, sampling, interactive installations, refreshments, meet-and-greets with headliners plus performances throughout the day and night on the Royal Gold Tree Stage!

While not everyone can glamp – NNMF is showcasing the importance of self care for everyone with an exclusive “Yoga in the Grove” program curated by Bloom Farms. Sustainably farmed and responsibly made Bloom Farms seek to bring safe and enjoyable medicine to patients who use medical cannabis as part of a healthy, fulfilling lifestyle. Also available in the Tree Lounge will be North Bay Nectar providing cannabis infused and hemp infused massage oil for 6,000 massages with their innovative premiere cannabis infused body products made with organic ingredients.

Don’t have a medical marijuana card? From the comfort of your own home, attendees can get a cannabis recommendation online from PrestoDoctor at a discounted rate for NN ticket holders. Just email for your code. Or PrestoDoctor will be onsite to provide recommendations at regular rates. Arriving with a current card also has the advantage of expedited entry into the lounge.

Outside of the relaxing oasis of the Tree Lounge, the 5th Annual Northern Nights has curated exceptional experiential offerings including a new “Purple Nights” Art Gallery showcasing the works of the finest borosilicate glass artists from around the world. Beachside dance parties, afternoon river swims, a diverse lineup of internationally renowned and breakout musical and mural artists, and world class production in an intimate setting make NNMF the perfect destination for city revelers to experience farm to fest. NNMF encourages all participants (18+) to activate their souls and smiles for three unforgettable days – no matter the path, you’ll find a home for the weekend in the majestic forests of NorCal.

To get tix, click HERE!

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Staff Editorial: Cinematic Mastery

posted June 23, 2017, 11:14 pm by Brian Rutherford | Filed Under Best Of | comment Leave a Comment

Since the late 1800’s, artists of rare form have found themselves recording songs that would go on to change lives. However, the songs that truly impact our lives transcend to cinema as well. Here’s a list of our staff’s favorite cinematic musical memory


As far back as I can remember, music has been a passion, even prior to movies. While I would love to point a finger at just about any John Cusack film (sorry, born in the 70’s), the impact of Eminem’s “Lose Yourself”, Ray Parker Jr.’s “Ghostbusters,” Steelers Wheel “Stuck In The Middle With You,” The Pixies closing of Fight Club with “Where Is My Mind” or even Bob Marley’s impact on all of the film “I Am Legend,” I would have to say the finest musical moment must be a glue to many generations, goofy or not.

What helps make a good or even great movie is a strong musical score. This is what makes the musicals so strong from the 1930s through 50s. The golden age of the musical has passed. Still music is important in film. “Pleasantville” features great jazz music from the 1950s. One of my favorite recordings Miles Davis’ “So What” is in the film. A jazz singer added to the film “Good Night and Good Luck.” The songs were more effective in furthering the story than any film composer contribution. The concert film also has a place, and the best would have to be the Talking Heads “Stop Making Sense.” Not only good songs but David Byrne’s energy made a for a great movie.

Press Release Roundup: June 9

posted June 11, 2017, 3:40 pm by Carlita | Filed Under Music News, Press Release Roundup, Releases | comment Leave a Comment

Music journalists get hit with a steady helping of press releases every day. For the music fan without that kind of sensory overload, a lot of music news can pass by without being seen. Every Friday, we will weed through and compile a list of some of the most intriguing press releases to come across our virtual desk.

ID10T Music Festival + Comic Conival


ID10T Music Festival + Comic Conival Announces SYFY’s The Magicians Panel and Animaniacs LIVE! Plus Portlandia, MST3K, Harmontown, & Stan Against Evil & Toyota Fan Engagement Experiences

Created and Hosted by Comedian Chris Hardwick

2-Day Festival Will Feature Music Performances and Comedy Sets By Today’s Top Artists Including Weezer, Girl Talk, Madeon, Zeds Dead, Demetri Martin, Michael Che & Many More, Plus Panels, Autograph Signings, Comic Book Artists Alley, and Exhibitor Village

Saturday, June 24th & Sunday, June 25th
in Silicon Valley, CA at the Shoreline Amphitheatre and Surrounding Grounds

ID10T Music Festival & Comic Conival, the groundbreaking first of its kind event that will combine chart-topping musicians, renowned comedians, makers, and some of the most influential people in the entertainment industry, together in one place for a once-in-a-lifetime weekend experience, has announced that SYFY’s The Magicians and Animaniacs LIVE! will join the impressive lineup of confirmed panels alongside Portlandia, Mystery Science Theater 3000, Harmontown, and Stan Against Evil. The festival will also feature multiple experiences from Toyota including a Cinderella-themed infinity photo booth, a Gingerbread Man-inspired car chase, interactive beatboxing, a live caricature station, and more. Created and hosted by Chris Hardwick, ID10T (pronounced I-D-ten-T) will take over the Shoreline Amphitheatre and surrounding grounds in Mountain View, CA on Saturday, June 24th and Sunday, June 25th.

Musical, comedy, and comic talent is as follows:

The Shoreline Amphitheatre Main Stage will feature a diverse musical lineup with performances by Weezer, Girl Talk, Lord Huron, Crystal Castles, TV On The Radio, OK Go, Animal Collective, Car Seat Headrest, The Mowgli’s, Robert DeLong, Mothers, Ron Gallo, and Tank And The Bangas.

The Mad Decent Stage in the Festival Tent will feature some of today’s premier DJs and electronic music acts with performances by Madeon, Zeds Dead, Jai Wolf, TroyBoi, Gryffin, Party Favor, Ape Drums, 4B, and Wax Motif.

The Monster Energy Comedy Tent will feature sets by some of today’s most entertaining comedians in an intimate, club-like setting. Hosted by April Richardson, performers will include Demetri Martin, Michael Che, Nikki Glaser, Garfunkel and Oates, Michael Ian Black, Brian Posehn, Greg Proops, Brent Weinbach, Hampton Yount, Matt Braunger, Dan Mintz, Marcella Arguello, Jonah Ray, Mike Phirman, and Yassir Lester.

Participating comic companies include Skybound, Valiant, Oni, Boom! Studios, Top Shelf, AfterShock, Insight Editions, Aspen, and HowToons.

Comic artists include Ande Parks (Green Arrow, Ciudad), Andrew Robinson (The Fifth Beatle, Superman: Red Son), Andy Belanger (Southern Cross, SwampThing), Babs Tarr (Batgirl of Burnside, Motor Crush), Becky Cloonan (Southern Cross, Punisher), Brent Schoonover (Howling Commandos Of Shield, Antman), Cameron Stewart (Fight Club 2, Batgirl), Chris Burnham (Batman Incorporated, Officer Downe), Dennis Hopeless (Spider-Woman, WWE), Donny Cates (God Country, Redneck), Farel Dalrymple (Pop Gun War, The Wrenchies), Gary Brown (Black Road, Catwoman), Gerry Duggan (Deadpool, Guardians of the Galaxy), Ivan Brandon (Drifter, Black Cloud), Jai Nitz (Suicide Squad’s El Diablo, Dream Thief), Jason Shawn Alexander (Empty Zone, Abe Sapien-The Drowning), Justin Greenwood (The Fuse, Stumptown), Matt Hawkins (Think Tank, Aphrodite IX), Matt Wilson (Batman & Robin, Joker), Mike Costa (Venom, Lucifer [FOX TV]), Morgan Breem (The Family Trade, Valor: East of the Sun & West of the Moon), Ngozi Ukaza (Check, Please!), Nick Dragotta (East of West, Howtoons), Phil Hester (Shipwreck, Green Arrow), Phil Noto (Black Widow, Star Wars), Ramon Villalbos (Nighthawk, E is for Extinction), Rick Remender (Deadly Class, Fear Agent), Robert Wilson IV (Heartthrob, Bitch Planet), Shawn Martinbrough (Thief of Thieves, Luke Cage Noir), Van Jensen (The Flash, Cryptocracy), and Wes Craig (Deadly Class, Guardians of the Galaxy).

To get tix, click HERE!

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Press Release Roundup: May 26

posted May 29, 2017, 10:24 am by Carlita | Filed Under Music News, Press Release Roundup, Releases | comment Leave a Comment

Music journalists get hit with a steady helping of press releases every day. For the music fan without that kind of sensory overload, a lot of music news can pass by without being seen. Every Friday, we will weed through and compile a list of some of the most intriguing press releases to come across our virtual desk.



Attending our second MoogFest this month, the move to Durham provided a different vibe this time around. In a larger urban center than its previous hub, Asheville, the switch helped elevate the profile of the electronic music fest which continues to rise each year. Featuring events all over the city such as Michael Stipe’s art installation ‘Jeremy Dance’ being played on the windows of the American Underground, Sound Installations with Moor Mother and sold out workshops on techno-shamanism by Elizabeth Traina, the action packed agenda yielded cool moments. Whether you attended talks with Michael Stipe, Flying Lotus and Colin Wolfe, peeped performances by DJ Chela and ZenSoFly, Suzi Analogue, King and DJ Premier or sampled Moogs to your heart’s content at the pop-up shop, was inspiring to see electro nerds and neophiles from near and far united for the love of the art.

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Press Release Roundup: May 12

posted May 15, 2017, 10:14 am by Carlita | Filed Under Music News, Press Release Roundup, Releases | comment Leave a Comment

Music journalists get hit with a steady helping of press releases every day. For the music fan without that kind of sensory overload, a lot of music news can pass by without being seen. Every Friday, we will weed through and compile a list of some of the most intriguing press releases to come across our virtual desk.

ARISE Music Fest


Peep the lineup above for Colorado’s ARISE Music Fest and get tix HERE!

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Jesus Christ Superstar – ”A Striving Artist’s Cast Recording”

posted May 8, 2017, 8:50 am by Mark Mcconville | Filed Under Releases | comment Leave a Comment



Image result for jesus christ superstar a striving artists cast recording

To unravel the beauty you must delve in, you must focus on the shine and the quality, and music group Striving Artists are doing that with their hearts beating to the instruments they wholeheartedly love and cherish. Their work is renowned for its elegance and subtlety, produced for the passionate and the purists, orchestrated with peace and serenity in mind.

The tranquil sounds are a reflection of why Striving Artist founder Greg Luzitano wanted to create a group setting and why he wanted to incorporate his expertise. He’s a multi-instrumentalist, proving his talents on a big scale. And with these sounds put in place, Luzitano and a whole array of talented people have put together astonishing, somber, emotional compendiums in Jesus Christ Superstar. They are records full of wonder and might, created to spark magic and hope.

There are two CDs to indulge in, both religious and compelling, both taking influence from faith and its impact. The brilliance of it comes from the true bond that the artists have. They all come together in unison, playing their hearts out for the cause, delivering beautiful harmonies.

The sequences and arrangements are powered by different singers and instrumentalists, which creates a sense of diversity and gives the crop of stars a chance to shine. There’s drumming from wonder-kid Nate Concalo, who has the powerhouse ability to go on and propel, there’s vocals from a variety of great singers. It all comes together as a worthwhile and entertaining project.

The performers have been plucked from a wonderful platform of flair and imagination, and it’s heard throughout the two collections. The songs all serve up a purpose too. Heaven On Their Minds from CD 1 is a brilliant, raw, rock influenced track which highlights what Striving Artists are about, great melody and scintillating instrumentals and sincere workmanship. This Jesus Must Die is a song which begins with slow vocal work. The contribution falls into a trance like vibe. The lyrics are searing and imaginative, describing a dangerous situation. Damned All The Time – Blood Money showcases a rock infused riff and well-toned vocals. This track highlights the versatility of the group.

CD 2 goes on in the same vein. It’s purposeful and intriguing. The Last Supper is a tour de force, it lasts for 7.17 and it’s a magical, colossal, burst of emotion. The arrangements are wonderfully placed and the production values are massive. Gethsemane (I Only Want To Say) directs towards Luzitano who serves up arresting vocal work. You will hear the passion and reason in his vocals. He certainly knows how to raise his voice and bellow out stark and eventful lyrics. King Herod’s Song contains a blunt subject matter. The lyricism is fundamental, and the words are sung with a degree of rage. Yet again the instrumentals are on point.

Striving Artists is a collective of unbelievably talented musicians. They’re truly at one with their craft and it shows through this religious but modern work.

Press Release Roundup: April 28

posted May 3, 2017, 9:20 am by Carlita | Filed Under Music News, Press Release Roundup, Releases | comment Leave a Comment

Music journalists get hit with a steady helping of press releases every day. For the music fan without that kind of sensory overload, a lot of music news can pass by without being seen. Every Friday, we will weed through and compile a list of some of the most intriguing press releases to come across our virtual desk.

Art of Cool Fest

aoc-fest-ig (2)

Capping off a steamy April, thousands traveled from far and wide, even crossing the pond, to partake in the 4th Annual Art of Cool Fest in Durham, NC. With a multi-generational jazz, hip-hop, R&B and soul-rock lineup that you couldn’t find anywhere else, each day showcased homegrown rising and Grammy-winning established artists and producers. With the diverse group assembled, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see future collabos and projects as a result. Whether it was Rakim backed by Zoocru and fest co-founder Al Strong on trumpet or George Clinton funking it up with Kendra Foster jumping onstage, the community vibe remained strong throughout the weekend.

Oasis Fest


All eyes will be on Morocco this September as Oasis festival returns to Marrakech for its third edition this September 14-17, 2017 bringing a world-class music line-up to music resort The Source. The third wave of acts are revealed today, including Agents Of Time (live), Black Rose, Call Super, DJ Stingray, Dr. Rubinstein, Pantha du Prince (live), Shed, Willow and more. With acts including Richie Hawtin, Maceo Plex, Nicolas Jaar, Marcel Dettmann, Anja Schneider, Moodymann, KiNK and Charlotte de Witte also on the bill, this is set to be the biggest edition to date.

There’s not many festivals in the world where you can ride a camel in the desert by day and dance beneath the stars by night, soundtracked by the biggest stars of the electronic music scene. Founded in 2015, Oasis has put North Africa firmly on the map as the must-visit festival destination of the moment. Nestled on the outskirts of the bustling city of Marrakech, the festival continues to showcase the finest international talent, as well as shining the spotlight on the flourishing Moroccan electronic music scene.

DJ Stingray has been an innovative force in the world of Detroit techno for over twenty years. Through his unconventional techno offerings, the balaclava-clad DJ has captured the attention of alternative audiences worldwide. As a blanket of darkness envelops the Atlas Mountains that backdrop the festival, his distinctive high tempo, high impact sound will set the tone, making for an intense and electric atmosphere at Oasis 2017.

Underground techno specialist Call Super also makes the journey to North Africa for Oasis festival this September. The British producer recently dropped his Fabric 92 mix to a stellar reaction from fans and media alike, with Resident Advisor slating him as “one of the most striking artists in electronic music right now” and Pitchfork praising his “spellbinding selections.”

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Jerad Finck – “New Kids”

posted April 21, 2017, 5:43 pm by JasonHillenburg | Filed Under Releases | comment Leave a Comment


Spokane, Washington native Jerad Finck has arrived at this place through talent, but discipline plays a much more important role. His experiences with a variety of instruments and musical approaches, as well as his lyrical engagement, makes him a singularly unique performer whose songwriting and performing talents have been amply recognized on both a regional and national level. However, it is discipline distinguishing him for than anything else. Finck is a performer who clearly gets and wants it – his new single “New Kids” bristles with creativity and a subtle sense of risk taking that defies the norm and rewards anyone willing to give him time to weave his magic. His time opening for acts as diverse as Daughtry, Sister Hazel, Red Wanting Blue, and Christina Perri have shaped him into a superior creative artist capable of conveying oceans of emotion with seemingly little effort. This latest effort highlights his ongoing artistic partnership with writer/producer Denny White and is set to propel his career to a higher level than ever before.

“New Kids” has a low key fanfare opening the song before it soon settles into a steady groove. The groove is ambling, easy going, and loosely confident while still maintaining all the needed focus to get the song over. The percussion, seemingly scattershot at times, is particularly effective for conveying the song’s shuffle mood and Finck brings his voice into perfect accord with the backing track. The decidedly low-fi approach of the song never lacks physicality – “New Kids” is a track that will engage listeners on every level from the first notes on. It has understated melodic virtues that few songs of its ilk share and Finck does an exceptional job of wrapping his voice tightly around the arrangement.

There are few meaningful post-production touches. Instead, Finck’s voice is the centerpiece of the track and effectively wraps around the music in a compelling but unobtrusive way. Much like everything else about his presentation, Finck refrains from following established formulas too closely and, instead, attempts to wring new variations from aforementioned themes. It results in a collected, humble performance in some ways that nonetheless announces his arrival in unambiguous terms. Jerad Finck is clearly a performer intent on establishing himself as a major force on the music scene and there isn’t a single note of “New Kids” that doesn’t resound with that intent.

The lyrics are accessible without ever unduly belaboring things. The balance of artistry Finck brings to his work is a rarity with seasoned performers and writers, let alone new voices. It emerges from him naturally and without any of the usual trappings, like glossy presentation, that frequently compromise similar performers. Instead, Finck’s performance on “New Kids” comes out as a genuine expression of singer/songwriter artistry quite unlike anything else on the scene today. Finck’s ability to connect with audiences is quite obvious and it seems to come naturally. “New Kids” plays like a track ripped from his autobiography, but it will prove difficult for a wide swath of listeners to not relate to its sentiments and their expression in sound.

Photo by: Michael Sparks Keegan

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