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CD Review Lespecial - Cheen


Record Label: Techne Records
Review by Sal Serio
November 2017

Lespecial is a genre-busting trio from Boston/New York City that continuously pulls sharp left turns on their musical influences. One minute they’re sparse techno, then Buckethead-type weirdo shredding, then alt-funk in a Primus/Chili Peppers vein, with Talking Heads “Speaking In Tongues” era synth keyboard flourishes, to middle eastern flavored hip-hop and psychedelic reggae dub. Yet they somehow manage to retain a consistency and logical flow.


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CD Review Vixen's Janet Gardner  - Vixen’s Janet Gardner

Vixen's Janet Gardner

Vixen’s Janet Gardner
Record Label: Pavement Entertainment
Review by Tommy Rage
October 2017

Vixen’s Janet Gardner releases a solo album that mixes her 80’s power vocals with an up-dated & modern feel. Read More…


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CD Review Dan Kolesari - Since You’ve Been Around

Dan Kolesari

Since You’ve Been Around
Record Label: Self Released
Review by Donny Stopiak
October 2017

A worthy follow-up to his 2015 release, Waiting For You, this September 2017 release masterfully showcases Dan’s piano playing chops, passionate vocals, and innate songwriting ability.


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CD Review Tori Amos - Native Invader

Tori Amos

Native Invader
Record Label: Decca
Review by John Noyd
September 2017

Gracefully relaying the enchanted mantra, “get you back to you,” the opening track, “Reindeer King,” is a fitting beginning to Amos’ fifteenth album. Suspended between butterfly sighs and orchestrated roars, the entire album seeks a mentoring center, casting nature’s self-correcting resilience as spirit guide to a world caught between psychological extremes and ecological upheaval. Bravely rattling sabers, Amos carves marvelous labyrinths fusing classical piano talent with rich, contemporary sounds, livening divine rhymes with funky tribal grooves and churning flurries of edgy arpeggios into choreographed seductions. From conjuring heart-breaking dawns to nurturing twilight-guided musings, “Native,” paints glamorous panoramas through globe-trotting rhythms and operatic melodies; illuminating modern follies through gorgeous metaphorical choruses anointed in heavenly chemistry. A mesmerizing entertainer, Ms Amos plays Madison’s Orpheum Theater October 26th


CD Review Casket Robbery - The Ascension

Casket Robbery

The Ascension
Record Label: Casket Robbery
Review by Sal Serio
August 2017

Monroe, Wisconsin’s, horror metal outfit Casket Robbery is back with a relentless new 3-song E.P. and an all-new line-up of Megan Orvold on vocals, Troy Powell and Cory Scheider on guitars, Derek Silloway on bass, and drummer Derek Bonn. ‘The Ascension’ E.P. showcases a more classic death metal feel than before; as pulsating, pounding rhythms mesh with throbbing tempos, shrouded with tortured vocals and sheets of ethereal Hellspawn orchestral choir sounds, which accentuate the intense mood, and made me sneak a glance over my shoulder on more than a few occasions while absorbed in the listening experience. This cadaverous cacophony keeps with the Casket Robbery tradition of being the perfect movie soundtrack music for creepy slasher movies with a very sick sense of humor. Which, of course, is why I like this so much!


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CD Review Metz - Strange Peace


Strange Peace
Record Label: Sub Pop
Review by John Noyd
August 2017

A deluge of bruising refusals seeking sanity inside anarchy, “Peace,” releases stark, cathartic coercions through fuel-injected conjecture. Gunning in blunt industrial rumbles riddled in prickly street-savvy literacy, METZ’s rogue Morse code mojo hammers out cast-iron sounds from a collective wreckage connected to fitful pit-bulls pitching willful punk thrills as breakneck metal-blues regrouped into locked-jaw cannonball fodder splatters spring-loaded foreboding over smoothly executed explosions. Giddy with irrefutable conclusions while plagued by unconquerable questions, the Toronto-based three-piece squeezes profound urban guerrilla bounce from slippery rhythmic triggers, winding timely existential potential around sizzling demolition to construct hum-buckling crunches from spit-fire ire, coating hard-core semaphore with ballistic conniptions sliced in decisive righteousness and roasted over social corrosion.  Witness the band’s powerful prowess firsthand, September 23rd at Madison’s Majestic Theater.


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