AMPED™ FEATURED ALBUM OF THE WEEK: LEE DEWYZE/PARANOIA

 PARANOIA is the seventh album from singer/songwriter Lee DeWyze, best known as the winner of the ninth season of AMERICAN IDOL. Paranoia is an atmospheric and highly passionate album that blends the warmth of acoustic instrumentation with cold yet emotional electronic textures, creating something that is unique yet still very commercial. PARANOIA is a highly emotional concept album that details the many facets of a romantic Relationship – a subject that all of us can relate to. 

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AMPED™ FEATURED ALBUM OF THE WEEK: RUBY BOOTS/DON’T TALK ABOUT IT

Born in Australia and now  residing in Nashville, TN, singer/songwriter Bex Chilcott – better known as Ruby Boots – creates music that slightly betrays both her homeland and her adopted city. In fact, she manages to cross genres with ease, rarely standing still long enough to adopt any genre as her own. Her 2018 album DON’T TALK ABOUT IT that supports that claim.

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FIELD MUSIC: An EXCLUSIVE Q&A with David Brewis

 

Field Music is a UK outfit formed by brothers David and Peter Brewis in 2004. The band’s clever and unique approach to Pop music set them apart from any and all of their contemporaries. Instead of following any ‘current’ musical trend, the band blended Psychedelic-era Beatles influences with C86 jangle, Synthpop swirl, Baroque Pop, Indie Twee and angular Post-Punk. Add some truly mesmerizing melodies, eclectic arrangements and a pure love of music making and you’ve got the recipe for great recordings. Embracing Pop music but ignoring the limitations of the standard Pop formula, Field Music is a band that can easily be compared to other music mirth-makers like 10cc and XTC. Even the brothers’ side projects School Of Language and The Week That Was are worthy additions to your collection.

Stephen SPAZ Schnee
was able to send off a few questions to David Brewis, who graciously took time to discuss the band’s new album OPEN HERE and more…

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AMPED™ FEATURED ALBUM OF THE WEEK: BERNARD ALLISON/LET IT GO

Bernard Allison made his recording debut on GONNA BE A LIVE ONE IN HERE TONIGHT, a 1979 live album by his father Luther Allison. Recorded live in Peoria, IL when Bernard was only 13, this set was an auspicious debut for an artist that has continued to mine the soul of the Blues for over forty years. In the early ‘80s, the young guitar slinger became a member of Koko Taylor’s band as well as continuing to work with is father. While it took another 11 years before he released his first official solo album (1990’s THE NEXT GENERATION), Bernard has certainly made each release count. He may have inherited his father’s talents but Bernard has taken the Blues in new and exciting directions.

The Sound Of STUDIO ONE: An EXCLUSIVE Q&A with Chris Wilson!

According to Wikipedia, “Studio One is one of Jamaica’s most renowned record labels and recording studios, having been described as the Motown of Jamaica. The record label was involved with most of the major music movements in Jamaica during the 1960s and 1970s including Ska, Rock Steady, Reggae, Dub and Dancehall.” The label was founded by Clement ‘Coxsone’ Dodd and has become one of the most influential labels of our generation. Chris Wilson is the curator of the label’s vast catalog and is responsible for a plethora of reissues currently distributed by Redeye.
Stephen SPAZ Schnee was able to send off a handful of questions to Chris Wilson, who was gracious enough to answer them. We focus on the label’s most recent releases – FROM THE VAULTS VOL. 1 and Freddie McGregor’s BOBBY BOBYLON but also delve a little into Studio One’s history…

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ALTERED IMAGES: The Epic Years (4CDs) reviewed!

Regardless of what the naysayers think, the ‘80s was an extremely exciting decade for music. From Punkto Post-Punk, Power Pop to Synthpop, New Wave to New Romantic, there was so much creativity in the air. Punk had come along in 1976 and levelled the playing field, allowing bands to create new musical genres, of which there were many. On any given week, you could buy new releases from artists like A Flock Of Seagulls, Gang Of Four, The Icicle Works, Peter & The Test Tube Babies, Spandau Ballet, XTC, Squeeze, Culture Club, Split Enz, Madness, Blancmange, PiL, The Clash, The Human League, The Jam, Siouxsie & The Banshees and so many other remarkably talented bands. Sure, there were second and third tier bands that seemed to jump on whatever bandwagon was the most popular at the time but by and large, there were many unique bands that really stood out from the pack. Altered Images was one of those bands and THE EPIC YEARS (4CD) is all the proof you need! This box set contains the band’s three studio albums (with bonus tracks) plus an additional CD containing nine extended remixes. THE EPIC YEARS is the definitive Altered Images collection and should be a part of any serious music fan’s collection. Ahem, that means YOU, the reader!

AMPED™ FEATURED ALBUM OF THE WEEK: CINDY ALEXANDER/NOWHERE TO HIDE

For two decades,  singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Cindy Alexander has been crafting albums of emotional strength and delicate beauty. Thankfully, the string of albums that she has released over the years have not gone unnoticed. In 1998, she was named Songwriter of the Year and nominated for Female Vocalist of the Year by the Los Angeles Music Awards. Her debut album SEE RED was nominated for Independent Pop Album of the Year. Since then, she’s received many more awards and nominations including Songwriter of the Year –JPF Music, Best Female Rock Vocalist – All Access Music Awards, and Special Achievement Pop Artist – Los Angeles Music Awards. She was offered a major label recording contract thanks to her appearance on NBC’s Star Tomorrow but she chose to have more control over her career and rejected the offer.

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AMPED™ FEATURED ALBUM OF THE WEEK: INGRAM/NIGHT STALKERS

     
     NIGHT STALKERS, originally released in 1984, was Ingram’s third and final album. And before you jump to conclusions, this band of Ingram siblings was not related to Grammy-winning singer/songwriter James Ingram although there is a member of this act who goes by the named James/Jim! This album features the multi-talented former basketball player Norman AKA Butch Ingram (bass and trumpet) joined by his siblings James (vocals, keyboards, sax, flute), Barbara (vocals), Billy (guitar, bass, trombone), John (lead vocals, drums, tuba), Timmy (drums, percussion, trumpet) and Francis, Edith, and Virginia (vocals).  Unlike most other family bands at that time, Ingram was a self-contained unit – writing, arranging and producing their own material.

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AMPED™ FEATURED ALBUM OF THE WEEK: BLACKTOP MOJO/BURN THE SHIPS

     Palestine, TX-based hard rock band Blacktop Mojo returns with their sophomore album BURN THE SHIPS. This blistering potpourri of power was recorded at Sound Emporium Studios in Nashville, TN, FAME Studios in Muscle Shoals, AL, and Audioworx Studios in Palestine, TX. Blacktop Mojo’s blend of Metal, Southern Rock, Hard Rock and Grunge ensures that they will appeal to heavy music lovers across the board.

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