A short while ago I'd scheduled a De Facto post. While I was writing it I realized I could listen to an album I hadn't had, and while listening to that one I figured I might as well listen to the EP too. I ended up writing about that EP today.

It's a lot more vocal and easier to digest than what they'd come up with in the future. Still very much so Dub, but farther away from those electronic sounds that made it seem like some uncontrollable intoxication trip. Give some of it a listen.

That's a sweet addictive track that might still be a little out of the norm for a lot of people, but is real easy to get along with. It comes packed with little twists and turns in it that make it reach out and fondle your subconscious while you listen to words.

It's also pretty fun to sing along with Time does not stop, it collects you while you daze off into the sweet Dub. It won't be for everyone, but after a little while it's hard to resist.

Buy/Stream @ Bandcamp
It might just be three songs, but it's also just $2, and the quality of the early material is actually really good. I personally kinda wish they had kept it up in this direction for a while longer.

The vocals will be on it about as often as you've already heard here. It's a great place to start if you're getting into Dub, or are just getting into ORL roots and origins. It might not be Reggae enough for the Rasta audience, and it might not be detailed enough for the bass lovers, but if Dub is your thing you should already be streaming this beauty on the above Bandcamp link.
I've been after Nathan Navarro's debut since its release back in October, but I couldn't find a stream until just a short while ago. I wasn't willing to jump into a random Rockstep album without giving at least half of it a listen.

As soon as I hit play I was slapped in the face with a song I'd heard months ago. A song that also works as a perfect entrance. Give that one a listen if drops and wobbles are to your liking.

Opening tracks have an important say in what's to come. They can either prepare you for the future or completely fool you into thinking it's gonna be something else, and this little piece, which is technically by Dot, successfully does both.

Yes, there's wibs and wobbles and a nicely toned progression, but there's a so many other shades throughout the album that it really just seems like a very long EP. Testing sounds out to see what suits him best.

Stream\Buy @ Bandcamp
It's far from perfect, and it's definitely a bit eclectic for just anyone's tastes, but when you weed through the decent stuff you can find a real treat. I understand the harsh new electronic sound isn't for everyone, especially in this light, but the man does things with his bass that are truly amazing.

The occasional solo and the sweet influence of Power Metal can be found, as well as many other genres including Progressive and Industrial Rock. The problem is it doesn't sit still. It's good to have a few tracks to play here and there, but not much beyond that.

Of course you'd have to give it a listen to know what those tracks are, so head on over to the Bandcamp link above and get your ears in on it. But unless you're really into your Brostep or extremely addicted to bassists' talent, this one's pretty easy to look past.
It released, and I heard it. To be honest, I was expecting something completely different after hearing Protovision. You'd think this is a bad thing but no, not today it isn't.

Kavinsky managed to surprise me with a few layers of depth spread throughout key tracks on the album. Today's feature might not be the most intricate, and it's been out for a while, but it shows the general direction the album tries to go in.

Not the best song ever, a loop with a lot of epic add-ons for good measure. At least, when heard on its own. By the time you get to this song in the album you've already witnessed the story of the man who became one with his car. You can either hate the drama, or love every bit of it.

The rest of the album has that appeal. Song after song is just pieced together to flow nicely. A track can sound okay alone, but backed by the right track; the difference in style and sound can make it much more attractive.

Buy: CD | mp3 | Vinyl
Finally, we get Teddy Boy's story with narration at the beginning and end! We get to understand what the other EPs were explaining in as much detail as we need, and we get a few of those best tracks to represent this release.

Comparing this one to his EPs though, that's what makes it special. The best EP in my book was Nightcall, and I think this release tops it. The transition from song to song goes well for the genre, and if you're a fan of French Electro I don't think you'll be disappointed. It's better than Guetta, that's for sure.

It's not a perfect release, there's always a track here and there that manages to lose you, but with its occasional gems and dips and dives (and narrative) it really pulls through as something memorable when given to the right audience. I'd go search for it if your curiosity is peeking.
I had a link sent to me a while ago, and it was a sweet fun sound with a happy touch that left a smile on my face. Never would I have imagined it was Lithuanian, but that sure explains why Migloko is not as well known as she should be.

It's not very difficult to find a favorite track within her self titled debut, but it still took some thought to figure out what today's feature track would be. I ended up caving in to my love for a sensual saxophone.

Enjoy Liūdno Katuko Daina.

It'll start off kinda cheesy, but once her voice kicks in things change. It goes through a misleading change of sweet and soft, and heads straight into a Jazz-Pop thing with distortions and random sax solos.

And it's during these points that I realize I love the accent going into it. It's a little hard to understand the lyrics, but it's fun enough to give it its listen anyway. It's a good light for an album with a few dark corners.

Buy in Lithuanian
This is not a perfect album, but it's a fantastic first effort. At least for the blend of genres and the backing musicians involved. The production quality isn't always at it's best, but it's really her voice and some unique melodies that make this worth listening.

And of the Russian sharp edged words intrigue you you're still in luck. Her songs come in English, French, and Lithuanian, meaning there's a lot of vocal variety past the 17 tracks.

I'd say about half the songs are really easy to get into, with the other half sounding like generic catchy radio, meaning that the entire album is a pretty swift and easy listen. It's hard to come by, but you can lend it an ear on Grooveshark if you're so inclined.
I've been meaning to give this one a listen for nearly a year now, and I've finally gotten my ears in on it. The result wasn't quite what I was expecting, but being caught off guard here and there was worth its faults.

The electronic base blends fine with the clear Mexican influence, it's just that sometimes it's overdone. Today's song is one of the catchier ones. Translating to 'The Boss' enjoy yourselves El Jefe.

The video is a representation of the lyrics, about as literal as it could get. To understand the true depth of the song, it's best to simply understand Spanish. Sorry guys.

Aside from that we have the spy movie feel thanks to all the strings involved, and a certain catchy vibe that could only be found in electronic production. It's downfall; the monotony. The redundancy of the beat and the monotone vocals do little in the songs favor.

Buy: CD | mp3 | Vinyl
 It's that redundancy that sticks out the most for the album. Somehow they manage to pull it off positively, giving a 90's era electronic-music-nostalgia that many will enjoy. It's not as visible in today's track as it would be in the entire album, so give it a listen if it sounds intriguing.

I personally find the album to suit better as background music, but the occasional political statement or progressive sound make it welcome to a heavy listener too.

Difficult to peg to a category, I fear they pushed their diversity too far to make a recognizable album. In a few years it'll just be another of their releases. That's not a bad thing considering it's not a bad release.
I was introduced to the band a couple of days ago and I decided to delve deeper into the sound. The initial find was worrisome, now that I found that their more recent work is Pop Rock based. I learned from there and gave their debut a listen instead.

What you get is a lengthy display of Reggae with a side of rock and decent vocals. It's got just about everything you'd expect from an American Reggae band, but the direction changes with the content of their lyrics.

Not the happiest track in the album, but it does show how far from the norm they're willing to go. Just the same, you have the thick clean bass line to latch onto and the swift vocals. Add the perfect length for the song's substance and you have a keeper.

And this isn't to say they don't have their fair share of happy tracks too, they do. It's more about the quality of the lyrics, which is sad because they're not always amazing.

Buy: CD | mp3
It's a lengthy debut, which is a great way to start but I don't think it's the best way to have a look back. The sound is decent, but with many other American Reggae bands sounding so similar, I would've trimmed it down oh, say 3 to 5 songs.

It's still got it's flair of originality though. Between the occasional un-Rasta-like lyrics, and the slips and dives into Hard Rock and even Punk, they manage to stay fresh. It's just too easy to pick out your favorites and discard the rest.

If you're curious about the sound and willing to give it a try, they have a stream right on their Myspace. If you like their sound and think you'd enjoy their newer Pop Rock stuff, you can find that there too.
These guys caught my ear a short while ago with their modernized Tango sound, so I decided to look them up a bit and see if they were worth a listen. I started where one does when wandering foreign ground, at the beginning.

Instantly you're hit with Argentine musical history. Their first tracks all display some form of homage to the great Carlos Gardel. Today's track samples his 1922 El Carretero with a much more modern twist.

The guitar is what peaks the interest here, giving the modern twist on the ageing Milonga genre that they focus on so well. It's interesting how they modernize even the style of the guitar, switching the genre up about as much as the Tango did.

And of course it's because of the Tango base that we're kept and intrigued. The lyrics maintain during the parts that would otherwise be monotonous, and the electronic side keeps it pulsating with youth. An effect that can be heard throughout the album.

Buy/Stream @ OtrosAires.com
Though not all as unique as today's track, it does have a significant amount of Gardel history in it. A true Milonga/Tango aficionado will enjoy the hints and nods at greatness, and the average newcomer will still be drawn in by the catchy sounds and poetic vocals.

I do have my complaints, of course. The most important one being the monotony in their electronic feel. Yes, it brightens the ageing genre and fills it with life, but it gets repetitive and with songs at lengths further than 4 minutes, it can get tiresome.

All that aside, it still makes for a decent listen if you know what to look for, or if you just like feeling classy with your background music. If today's track was intriguing enough, be sure to give the album a listen.
This one went and passed right under my nose without me even noticing. I blame my love for his Tiene Que Ver release. Just the same, I'm glad I was able to catch up with Roberto Fonseca's latest.

What we've got is some top quality Jazz that inclines perfectly on the piano. Many a delicate song, but also intricate noisy Jazz pieces as well, like today's feature.

Give Chabani a listen.

It starts instantly. You're struck by the harsh piano tones and the clash of the percussion. It organizes soon after, but the shock is still left over. This basically means that if you end up enjoying the song, you should give it another listen when you're done.

That's the appeal; at least to this track. It enjoys catching you off guard and then placing you in a more delicate manner. It allows the instruments to manifest, but it's Fonseca's piano that gets the strongest say.

Buy: CD
If being caught off guard for the better part of an album is a problem for you, don't worry. What's truly impressive about this release is that it's versatile, but also for the most part it's an easy listen. From the second song onward what we see are smooth transitions and awkward times.

Needless to say the production value for Yo (Spanish translation to 'Me') is top notch. Not every song is memorable, but after a few listens you can tell that most of it will stick for a while. Everything else is just regular old good music.

I definitely recommend this to the Jazz lovers. I found no true faults and believe it to be a near perfect release. But don't take my word for it, give it a listen and judge for yourself.
For any of you who liked Continue... and either didn't have the funds for it, or just don't mind a little more Wax on their playlists, he's come to us all with a valentines day gift.

To prove he loves his fans, he's gotten us all a free 14 track Unplugged album that a lot of the fans kinda followed on Youtube a while ago.

Yes, I picked the most the most today appropriate song. You gotta give it to the guy for catchy lyrics though, this one's one of the tracks repeating itself on my mind ever since I heard the latest album.

And if you have the latest and don't want to be overwhelmed by songs you already have, don't worry! It's full of older songs for you to get to know his work with. It's like a live best of Wax and some of Herbal T, and it works great for all us future fans.

Free Download
Only 8 tracks were heard on the Youtube playlist, meaning the release has 6 new unplugged tracks for the masses to gobble up. Just like I did in a matter of hours.

If you want the cordial Wax Valentine with the courting and persuasion, here's a link to that. It comes complete with romantic video and some of his finest poetry.

The download is pretty much free, you'll have to provide your email address and though it didn't tell me anything about adding to a subscriptions list, if it does he won't overflow your inbox. Just go ahead and enjoy the free music.
I was just sitting there yesterday, checking through my notes trying to figure out what I'd be in the mood to write about today. I couldn't find much, so I checked my email and I found this submission.

The first words of the email read:
"The boys and I just brutalized this Garth Brooks classic"
And I was sold.

Now I'm not the biggest Garth Brooks fan, so I didn't know how classic this track was until I tried to find it. Originally the track is called Papa Loved Mama, and though you can't find a single original version on Youtube, you can find it elsewhere.

And after hearing that I realized just how much it was really brutalized. They took an upbeat country song and made a regular old depressing song. The best part is, it suits the lyrics so much better.

Maybe that's just my inner city-boy still not liking Garth Brooks.

Buy/Stream @ Bandcamp
If you really liked Papa's in the Pen, you should go check the Youtube channel where the rest of the series will be taking place. As far as I can tell there will be no download of said tracks though.

For those of you who just want to add him to the collection somehow, you've got Little War, Little Less. I gave it a full listen and I was actually really pleased. It's hard to put a genre on it, but the Southern tendencies are there as well as plenty of melancholy.

Worth a listen if the sounds so far speak to you. I really dug the album and the price is right for it. On the downside, it might end up depressing you. Some people like that.
I was searching around for a particular Gorillaz cover a little while ago and on the road to it I found this album. I gave it a nod and a half a listen before going back on my way, but I've returned to give it a complete listen.

This is the part where I warn any true Gorillaz fans that they may find the following blasphemous and terrible, in which case I'd advise them to check last week's posts instead. Trust me. You're welcome.

Out of the album, this one is up in the favorites. It's got the track in there and it shows plainly, but they dig into it and add their own touch, I like how it ends up.

 Another thing I noted by the time this one came up was that as much of a Gorillaz Jazz ribute as they may have liked to make, it really feels more like video game music. Not a terrible thing, but it's a few steps away from Gorillaz too.

Buy: CD | mp3
The album has many its pro and con. It's got a gamer feel to it, they focus a lot on the vocal melodies, and as Jazzy as it can get sometimes it's also impossible to avoid an 80's feel. Some people will definitely get into it, but me personally, I just wouldn't buy it.

The only other negative thing I can say about this is that sometimes the songs last too long. They were dead set on replicating some of these, and refused a little leverage room.

 I'd give it a listen if it sounds alright to you so far. There's a lot of talent going into every track, and while not always perfect, it does make a sweet little listen.
It's been a while since I've posted a genuine classic, and today I'm heading back to such a point where the Reggae was great and blooming. Today, I'm gonna show off one of Alpha Blondy's finest.

Today's track, Téré, means Sun, and is from the point of view of an African orphan praising the sun because it's always there. Staying positive while depressing the hell out of us. Unless you can't speak Swahili, then it just sounds nice.

I may have just divulged more than most would ever know of the song, but I want you to realize how impossible it is to deny the happy air to the song. Right from the beginning, you're skipping through the ganja daisies.

Even with a language barrier, it becomes easy to sing along to. Give it an extra listen or two and you'll see at the very least you'll want to hum along. The melody brings it together, because the Reggae base is way too basic to sell us.

Buy: CD | mp3
Not all songs are as simple as today's, and there's even English on the album. I'd say delving into other languages early has caused the Ivory Coast legend to expand dramatically through the years.

Today's track is well known, but it's the title track that more people are aware of. I wouldn't be surprised if people from the Limewire days are still calling it a Bob Marley track, but hey that's what I'm here for. Right?

A lot of people/companies would try to recommend an Alpha Blondy compilation album. While it's hard to go wrong, you get a much finer result slowly getting the best albums, and Cocody Rock is a must if you're up for good Reggae. If you want to be sure, you can find a free stream at Myspace. Enjoy!
I stumbled onto these guys a little while ago, or maybe they stumbled onto me, but I gave them a listen. I was hesitant at first, very hesitant, but there's talent. The average Rock lover should come at this release with an open mind.

Their latest effort, The Human Sense, isn't perfect by any means, but there's a few tracks here and there that make it a worthwhile listen. One of those songs is One Step to Dawn.

Check it out.

Listen/Buy @ Bandcamp

Now it may incline towards that generic "Alternative" Rock side, but they do manage to incorporate a unique sound in there. It's not clear enough for me to fall in love, but it's there.

 The overall band sounds great, too. There's quality in the bass, the percussion, and there's some sweet licks here and there from the guitarist. What falls just a little short for me is the vocals, which is a shame because they're a heavy part of the album.

Stream/Buy @ Bandcamp
The entire album is loaded with English lyrics, making the voice portraying them a necessity. It's also a little odd because, well, the band is currently located in Mallorca, Spain.

 Aside from this detail, the band comes through pretty nicely. They've been active since 2007 and they're self produced, which is really impressive. Worth checking out if you need to rock out to something new.

 If the voice just barely passes for you though, they have an earlier release that can be yours free of charge. The vocalist back then, to me, is good enough to make that download worth while.
I've been meaning to lend Wax's latest release an ear since its release back in mid January, but only just now got around to it. I'd heard some singles, I kinda knew what I was getting into and hence I wasn't expecting much.

The tracks felt really commercial. I mean Rosana is featured in the album, but with tracks like Toothbrush in there too it starts seeming a little boring. And then he blows your mind away.

If you're not a fan of reading the last page of the book before you start it, don't click play. Just read on 'til the end of the post for a stream. Otherwise, enjoy.

This is technically the last track on the album and it's a great way to tie things together. There's a lot of negativity going on before this track. More of his drunk stories and some odd choices by the producers, but it's tracks like these that make any negative air worth it. Just good vibes and positive messages
"So every new day that I start off by bitchin', I think of all the dishes in the restaurant kitchen that I used to wash to get a meal, then reevaluate how I feel and it feels good"
He uses his talent to demonstrate that even after a dirty, negative, horrendously witty song, you can still be a musician who genuinely cares about the world. Take that, mainstream radio meatheads.

Buy: mp3
I'll admit that the first few tracks to this album coupled with the singles I'd already heard lead me to believe that Continue... was a half-assed effort and the only reason it's succeeded on iTunes is purely because it's easy to like an artist with a cool video. And then I was wrong.

What we really have is Wax attempting to innovate and improve his mark. He doesn't always succeed, but he manages to make some amazing sounds. If anything, all the playing around on this album could mean that a future album could be even better.

Sure, my favorite is still Scrublife, but I really do respect this last release. I want it in my collection, and I want to start calling myself a true Wax fan.

If you're still unsure, give the album a listen or three. It's quality rhymes.
When hearing about the LA based singer who finds her influences within Etta James, Johnny Cash and Amy Winehouse, I couldn't help but give her entire debut release a listen.

What we've got is a low key Electronic base thanks to the album's producer Alexander Spit, and Bago's perfectly raspy and catchy voice to continue setting the mood. Give her a listen.

A more recently developing sound here. Just chill bass and electronically modified twists and turns around a vintage voice. I really like the contrasts on this song, but the whole album shows the same style to it.

By the end of the song, if it's to be to your liking, you should be nodding and humming along. It's just catchy enough without being too annoying. Independent without delving too deep into that Indie sound. Maybe it's just me, but I really like the Bago/Spit duo.

Soundcloud Stream | Hulkshare Download
Making it even harder for me to believe that this isn't leaving a giant dent in the music world is how the album is free. Not even name your price, just plain old free for download. Share with your friends, your family, and with the random hobo down the street.

If the day's track didn't convince you and you think maybe something a little more upbeat could, give I Forget You a listen. Between that and today's track, and knowledge of even Trap sounds going into the production, you should know what you're getting into.

It's not without its imperfections, though. Maybe her voice gets a little too electronically altered with the echos, maybe the music can too easily lull you to sleep before the depth of her lyrics get to you. In the end, all that's stopping you from enjoying this gem is it not being your favored genre.
What better timing than the potential break-up (hiatus) of The Mars Volta for ORL to finally bring a single from his latest project Bosnian Rainbows out to the internet. A lot of fans are upset with the new sound, but me, I've been looking forward to this single for months.

The mistake is reading much about it before giving it a listen, so unless you trust my judgement a lot, give it a listen right now.

If you're still here, I'd read that it sounded like a pumped up version of Siouxsie and the Banshees. I'm not a big fan, but they're going for an Alternative Pop Rock sound so...

The first time I heard the track, for the first couple of minutes I thought it was great. Afterwards it started becoming too long. It was after a few more listens that I started realizing what the track and the band are made up of.

There's influences from the 80's and 90's and that's mixed together with everyone's flair. Almost anything with Teri Gender Bender should be good, and Omar's guitar is a unique spark whenever it's played.

Buy/Stream @ Bandcamp
As far as disappointments go, I could just hope that in a full album Deantoni Parks gets a little more exposure. I'm not asking for much, just use the talent provided to do something at least a little better than Indie-Pop percussion.

I have hopes for a great full release. This is a good track, and usually ORL Productions teasers such as these give a great view on what's to come, but with recent events and recent sketchy releases, I'm gonna stick to my dark corner and be wary of what's in store.

But then I haven't heard them live. I've been denied the opportunity. But those who've seen them say they're not bad. I'm sure they're not all Omar junkies, so let's just wait and see what a release could have in store, yeah?
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