#reviewoftheweek / The Revivalists - City Of Sound

Being an album that was originally released almost 2 years ago, the fact that it is gracing the ears of the masses only now, proves that The Revivalists are way ahead of the curve. This new rock album from the New Orleans natives straddles the line between so many genres it's hard to place the sound in just one. The entire album feels like is rooted in Americana, funk, and blues while having a jam rock quality that whets the appetite for experience the music live. Fortunately this reissue of the album features a second disc of live tracks that does just that (without having to actually get to show). "When I'm Able" leads off the disc and immediately draws you in. It's a fine introduction to the band and the sound, but acts almost as a gateway drug for the sounds that follow. Some are going to draw comparisons to bands like DMB and O.A.R., but the Revivalists will stand on their own, showcasing that their sound may cater to the same fans, but is in no way the same sound. Other tracks like "Navigate Below" and "Upright" are sure to entice music lovers to actually become Revivalists fans. Some might think that a reissue of old music an easy way to break down walls, but it really just shows that music professionals and fans alike really just missed the boat on a great thing years ago. It's a good thing this band and this album isn't going unnoticed and unappreciated and finally getting the recognition and exposure that is deserved.


#reviewoftheweek / Karl Denson's Tiny Universe - New Ammo

KDTU are back and delivering potentially their best release to date. Karl Denson has released music with many backing bands, but it's this incarnation of his Tiny Universe that seems to deliver the best yet. Starting off, they have the uncanny ability to present new takes on great songs, and on this album they take on three great alternative songs. Their renditions of the Beastie Boys' "Sure Shot," the White Stripes' "Seven Nation Army," and the Cold War Kids' "Hang Me Up To Dry" showcase how much of a party bad they are, while also solidifying themselves as great musicians at the same time. The album rocks from beginning to end just like a live show and has danceable moments throughout. Styles from funk to reggae are represented throughout the collection and are highlighted on tracks like "Three Trials Of Strength" and the title track. The hands down stand out on the album is the jam rock and blues influenced track "My Baby" which features vocals by Denson and Nicki Bluhm. These songs will surely translate well to the live stage, but if you can't make it out to a show, pumping these jams out of your stereo will surely transport you there in spirit.


#reviewoftheweek / The Fray - Helios

Veterans of the pop rock music scene, Denver natives The Fray keep reinventing and reinvigorating their music with each new release. Their newest endeavor has them venturing into a little bit more of the faced passed electronic rock that seems to be populating the airwaves today. The difference, The Fray have done it with class, still retaining who they were and are at the core. They sound and their lyrical composition remains fully intact on the album but it is the production that highlights this release and sets it apart from their catalogue. Stuart Price is at the helm, best known for his work with the Killers and Keane (with Ryan Tedder helping on the first single). He brings an excitement and a new edgy life to the Fray's sound. The primary example of this is the hard rocking and danceable track "Give It Away." The Fray are at their best when they are doing what comes naturally as well as in tracks like the upbeat single "Love Don't Die," the lead track "Hold My Hand," and the rocker "Hurricane." All in all, on this album The Fray keep themselves relevant in the music world while maintaining what brought them fame and success.


#reviewoftheweek / Dave Barnes - Golden Days

Dave Barnes is one of those underappreciated singer/songwriters. Great at his craft but still flying under the radar. Sure, some of his songs have been covered/recorded by popular artists, but Dave still seems to go unnoticed as an artist in his own right. This album seeks to uncover Barnes' true self as both a singer and a songwriter, showcasing some of his best performed and written lyrics to date. The album is pure pop rock with sing-a-long style hooks and catchy guitar riffs. The songs are identifiable and accessible by any music fan, and a welcome addition to his extensive catalogue. "Twenty Three" and "Loving Los Angeles" are two of his greatest lyrical pop songs. While his stock as a songwriter will most likely maintain its level of interest amongst his peers, it's his stock as a performer that is sure to gain a few points with fans, new and old.


BURN THIS / March 2014

  1. William Fitzsimmons "Fortune"
  2. James Vincent McMorrow "Gold"
  3. Jose Gonzalez "Stay Alive"
  4. Lord Huron "The Ends Of The Earth"
  5. Roadkill Ghost Choir "Beggars' Guild"
  6. Nathaniel Rateliff "Still Trying"
  7. Jamestown Revival "California (Cast Iron Soul)"
  8. Vance Joy "From Afar"
  9. John Butler Trio "Spring To Come"
  10. G. Love & Special Sauce (featuring Ben Harper) "Nothing Quite Like Home"
  11. Karl Denson's Tiny Universe "Sure Shot"
  12. Rustic Overtones "The Show Must Go On"
  13. The Revivalists "When I'm Able"
  14. Moon Taxi "The New Black"
  15. Kongos "Come With Me Now"
  16. Sam Roberts Band "Too Far"
  17. Graham Colton "Mixed Up"
  18. Andrew Ripp "Falling For The Beat"
  19. Rosi Golan (featuring Johnny McDaid) "Give Up The Ghost"
  20. O.A.R. "Peace"