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Eclectic Vibes - April 2009

CD/DVD Micro Reviews by Andrew Frey

Heatbox from Minneapolis

2 OF A KIND: On national square root day 3/3/09 two amazing performers wowed those assembled at The Annex in Madison, WI. First up Heatbox, the jazzy, hip-hop vocal organist from Minneapolis did his thing. By sampling each rhythm line until complete and then singing over the assemblage he transformed himself into an acapella orchestra of sorts. This generally results in sort of a jazzy hip hop flow to the songs. Always fascinating and motivating.

That 1 Guy, aka Mike Silverman transfixed the audience as soon as the “Magic Pipe” was brought to the stage. For those who have never seen the “Magic Pipe” it is an enormous double piped, double stringed invention with sampling triggers close at hand. I noticed how the “Magic Pipe” was imbued with even more magic via a few more joints in the armature at the top of the instrument. I’m sure this makes transportation much easier.

That 1 Guy has proven to be quite the showman. His quirky stage mannerisms convey the depth of his personality and foreshadow the great accomplishments that will almost undeniably crowd his future. From his crowd inspiring mini howl to slight of hand card tricks and even playing with his teeth, That 1 Guy really knows how to show off!

For the finale, Heatbox came on stage for some impromptu jamming. Ironically he was most effective and had the most fun when That 1 Guy settled into his straight jazz riffs and wasn’t flailing hard on the “Magic Pipe.” What a great night.

Can’t wait to see ‘em both again at the Bella Madre Festival over Memorial Day at Harmony Park!

MICRO REVIEWS: This Month's Rating Scale is from 1 - Sand thru 10 – Concrete
Babyland - Cavecraft


Record Label: Metropolis Records
Review published: April 2009
Rating: 8

They call themselves “performance based electronic junk punk.” Junk punk - as in banging on reallocated chunks of metal and melding it with electronica. They shine brightest when they intensely pound out the heavy percussive tribal elements

(2799) ViewsPermalink
Blackmore's Night - Secret Voyage

Blackmore's Night

Secret Voyage
Record Label: SPV
Review published: April 2009
Rating: 8

Literally touring the planet, these 6 enchanting renaissance type minstrels are highlighted by the famed Ritchie Blackmore (Deep Purple, Rainbow, etc). This, their 9th release, displays an impassioned range of traditional and contemporary melodies. The CD packaging defies the style of music it contains.

Covered Call - Money Never Sleeps

Covered Call

Money Never Sleeps
Record Label: Blistering Records
Review published: April 2009
Rating: 4

Classic rock with a metal tinged sound, look, style and presentation. They are proficient in their musicianship; the band output is just stuck in time while wading through prolific amounts cheese and cliché’s.

(2442) ViewsPermalink
Cycle Of Pain - Cycle Of Pain

Cycle Of Pain

Cycle Of Pain
Record Label: Reform Records
Review published: April 2009
Rating: 8

Black Label Society bassist exhibits his latest exploits that fall not far from the tree. Sludgy, grungy metal admittedly grown from the Black Sabbath side of heavy music but also reminding me of Soundgarden at times. Too many musical cameos to mention.

(5127) ViewsPermalink
Epochate - Chronicles Of A Dying Era


Chronicles Of A Dying Era
Record Label: Metropolis Records
Review published: April 2009
Rating: 8

More than just a collection of songs, these electronic doom prophets have delivered an evolving cinematic style landscape of bleak synthetic orchestral ministrations. Foreboding vocals are fed into this strained and grainy industrial view of reality while propelled to epic, dynamic and tragic trajectories.

(3071) ViewsPermalinkEpochate Website
Gabrielle Roth & The Mirrors - Jhoom

Gabrielle Roth & The Mirrors

Record Label: Raven Recording
Review published: April 2009
Rating: 9

Temptations of electronica seed these shamanic trance adventures sown by Roth through a variety of top notch musicians. These enchanting songs are lead by percussive elements that throb the root chakras of each listener choosing to imbibe in the dance of life.

Jai Uttal - Thunder Love

Jai Uttal

Thunder Love
Record Label: NuTone Music
Review published: April 2009
Rating: 10

Imbuing the Kirtan style with a variety of contemporary knob twirling elements, Uttal displays an entrancing variety of upbeat and thought provoking songs and chants. Blazing a boisterous trail of global fusion and bombastic love energy.

(2956) ViewsPermalinkJai Uttal WebsiteJai Uttal Wiki
Julien-K - Death to Analog


Death to Analog
Record Label: Metropolis Records
Review published: April 2009
Rating: 8

Cyberblasting industrial thump pop undercuts the calculated, anthemic pools of samples that coalesce and form hooks quite firm and tasty. Not surprising considering these music veterans were also in Orgy, Shuck and Derakh.

(2596) ViewsPermalinkJulien-K WebsiteJulien-K Wiki
Psychostick - Sandwich


Record Label: Rock Ridge Music
Review published: April 2009
Rating: 9

Arriving at the tongue, only to find it firmly in cheek. Metal + Comedy = Humorcore. This Phoenix, AZ group knows how to throw it down and still clown around. Of note, in Dec of 08 they celebrated their 4,000,000th song play on Myspace and their street team is called “The Dumb.” Pretty awesome!

Sometimes Why - Your Heart is a Glorious Machine

Sometimes Why

Your Heart is a Glorious Machine
Record Label: Signature Sounds Recording Co
Review published: April 2009
Rating: 7

A female folk trio blazing forth into a realm of saucy vocal libations and tantalizing musical interplay. Each is a seasoned performer and brings a unique perspective and dynamic interplay to the group. Just wish I liked Americana more.

(2616) ViewsPermalinkSometimes Why Website

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