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Hozier Sets Musical Hearts Aflame With “Wasteland, Baby!”

Incredible Irish songsmith Hozier has returned with a new album that is music to our ears.

Hozier is a gentleman who pulls from his roots… who appreciates the sounds that came before him, and that studious nature shows. Without question, “Wasteland, Baby!” is a nod to not only the greats, but his own evolution as an artist. “Wasteland, Baby!” is not an album that fears change, but instead embraces it. The instant gem is one that found Hozier exploring more layered and textured sounds. The album also pleasantly surprised me with Hozier’s repeated use of the F word (bold and powerful, dear sir!). The lyrics touch on both dark and light subject matter, a perfect refrain for life itself.
Hozier’s church was dismissed after the exhaustive touring that followed his 2014 debut album and (thank god) we are all in session, raising our musical hands again.

Up tempo tracks like “Almost (Sweet Music)” and “Nobody” get our feet tapping, and slower, sensual jams like “Movement” and hit right in the feels. No matter what the song, Hozier’s undeniable talent shines through. His vocals soar the entire album, be it in a direct lyric, or a beautiful chorus of layered vocals.

In true Hozier fashion, “Wasteland, Baby!” is packed with exceptional lyrics, and musicality that can stand up to the best of the best.
Hozier poetically articulates love on the deepest level, better than most of us could, and our world is better for having his voice.

“There’s no plan, there’s no race to be run
The harder the pain honey, the sweeter the song
There’s no plan, there’s no kingdom to come
But I’ll be your man if you’ve got love to get done”

The masterful musician’s knowledge and respect for rock and blues shines throughout the album as well, especially with his shout out track, “Nina Cried Power”. The album’s lead single also features the tremendous Mavis Staples. Together they belt out an anthem for the ages, perfect for these tumultuous times we find ourselves in.
Hozier’s homeland is well-represented through “Shrike”‘s beautiful harmony.

“Remember me love when I’m reborn
as the shrike to your sharp and glorious thorn”

The album is perfect for a long walk, an evening at home, a night with your love, or a long drive… In other words, pretty much anything. Like his first album, the cover art is masterfully painted by Hozier’s talented mother, Raine Hozier-Byrne.

Whether the album arrived at fan’s doorsteps via post, our inboxes to download, or through a trip to our local record store, “Wasteland, Baby!” has absolutely been worth the five year wait.

Hozier will be touring the US throughout the summer. Whilst singing, stomping and strumming, he will make a stop at the Fillmore in Detroit on May 28th.

Tracklist:

1. Nina Cried Power
2. Almost (Sweet Music)
3. Movement
4. No Plan
5. Nobody
6. To Noise Making (Sing)
7. As It Was
8. Shrike
9. Talk
10. Be
11. Dinner & Diatribes
12. Would That I
13. Sunlight
14. Wasteland, Baby!

Album review by: Tiffany Cuthrell

Surprise Asteroid Releases Tremendous New Song Entitled “Speak”

Warsaw, Indiana’s finest, Surprise Asteroid are here with a brand new track entitled “Speak”.

Surprise Asteroid is an ever-evolving collaborative effort, driven by talented singer / songwriter, Grant Reigner. Grant not only penned the song’s lyrics, but also played all of the instrumentation for “Speak”. The song also features background vocals by Joby Adams and Michael Burke.
According to Reigner, the song is a response to a higher power and the place we instinctively turn to when our backs are against the wall. “We crave independence and defy authority, both real and perceived. But as soon as we feel out of control or crushed by a burden we can’t bear, the first we thing we turn to is authority. A higher power is somehow necessary for our survival, and ‘Speak’ describes the struggle and pull of each of the two clashing emotions.”

As far as musicality goes, the song starts by catching listeners with a lovely and memorable acoustic riff. Quickly, the song is well-layered to include percussion, drum, and electric guitar. “Speak” presents very open, honest, and relatable lyrics, as well as terrific instrumentation the whole song through. The chorus is carried by a medley that would make even Weezer proud.
The song closes out with the same riff that drew us in.

“Speak” is a reflection of hard work, and passion for music. The time and production spent on the song absolutely shows. Surprise Asteroid’s hope is to unite folks both in the creative process of songwriting, as well as through listening enjoyment.

The single is making its debut today, and is presently available on iTunes, Amazon Music, Spotify, and Google Play.
Be sure to give “Speak” a listen, and keep a weather eye on the horizon for more to come from this great band.

 

 

Review by : Tiffany Cuthrell

Greta Van Fleet Rock Their Way To Four Grammy Nominations

Michigan natives, Greta Van Fleet have been nominated for an impressive four Grammys. Their list of nods include the coveted best new artist, best rock album for EP “From The Fires”, best rock performance for the unmistakable “Highway Tune”, and best rock song for “Black Smoke Rising”.

The nominations come on the heels of their explosive debut album, “Anthem Of The Peaceful Army”, and lead the rock music community.

Though only in their late teens and early 20’s, these gentleman posses an unmatched talent that not only meets but exceeds all of the hype that has trailed the band through 2018.

Greta Van Fleet is presently on tour, and will be making three sold out stops at Detroit’s Fox Theatre later this month.

 

 

Words and photo by: Tiffany Cuthrell

The Faint Announce New Album, “Egowerk”

Musical masters, The Faint have announced a brand new album entitled “Egowerk”. The forthcoming LP will be released on March 15th of next year, and houses 11 tracks.

The band’s last release, “Capsule: 1999-2016” was appropriately a collection of songs spanning The Faint’s career, in addition to 3 new tracks. One of which, “Young & Realistic”, is set to appear on “Egowerk”.
“Egowerk” is now available for pre-order. In addition, as a grateful gesture, the band released some limited edition materials via PledgeMusic such as signed posters, drumsticks, lyric sheets, and even a keyboard key.
Fans are excitedly standing by (myself included) to hear the album in its entirety.

Be sure to check out the video for the album’s lead single, “Child Asleep”, which is streaming now.

 

Egowerk Trackslist:

1 Child Asleep
2 Chameleon Nights
3 Life’s a Joke
4 Alien Angel
5 Egowerk
6 Own My Eyes
7 Source of the Sun
8 Another World
9 Quench the Flame
10 Young & Realistic
11 Automoton

 

 

Words by Tiffany Cuthrell, photo courtesy of The Faint

Arts Beats & Eats Making Its Colorful Return To Royal Oak

Ford Arts Beats & Eats is celebrating its 21st year of talent and fun, lighting up the Detroit suburb of downtown Royal Oak, Michigan.

Arts Beats & Eats is perpetually filled with great music, delicious food, and art from all over the map, surely supplying a little something for everyone.

With nine total stages on the docket, big names will hit the musical scene with the likes of AWOLNATION, Matt Nathanson, Everclear, Eddie Money, Rival Sons, Ben Folds, classic sounds from The Spinners, and so much more. Local metro Detroit area musicians will be showcased as well, further making Arts Beats & Eats an event the area can feel represented by and truly proud of. There will even be a Detroit Institute of Arts kids’ stage, ensuring family fun for all ages.

Be sure to catch all of the action over Labor Day weekend, with Arts Beats & Eats spanning from Friday August 31st to Labor Day Monday September 3rd.

For full event details, visit the festival’s website at http://artsbeatseats.com

 

 

 

Preview and featured photo by: Tiffany Cuthrell

Hozier Announces Return To US With Several Tour Stops

Hozier, the Irish gentleman responsible for mega-hit “Take Me To Church” has announced a welcome US tour.

It’s been mostly all quiet on the Hozier front for the last couple of years, with the talented artist hinting at upcoming music via several social media posts. Hozier, whose full name is Andrew Hozier-Byrne, was last seen in the states touring in support of his exceptional debut album of the same moniker, which was released in 2014.

The musician announced the tour via Facebook,Twitter and Instagram with a post that read in part, “Very excited to announce the upcoming North American tour for later in the year which will coincide with the releasing of new work. The completion of the record is fast approaching and I’m eager to share it with everyone.”

Ticket presale is slated for June 14th, while general sale begins on June 15th.

For further details, check out Hozier.com.

All North American tour dates are listed below…

 

09/15: CityFolk Festival Ottawa, ON
09/18: L’Olympia Montreal, QC
09/19: Rebel Complex Toronto, ON
09/21: Riviera Theatre Chicago, IL
09/22-23: Pilgrimage Music & Cultural Festival Franklin, TN
09/24: Beacon Theatre New York, NY
10/01: House of Blues Boston, MA
10/02: Lincoln Theatre Washington D.C.
10/03: The Fillmore Philadelphia, PA
10/05-7: Austin City Limits Music Festival Austin, TX
10/08: The Wiltern Los Angeles, CA
10/12-14: Austin City Limits Music Festival Austin, TX
10/14: The Marquee Tempe, AZ
10/15: The Observatory North Park San Diego, CA
10/16: Fox Theater Oakland, CA
10/18: The Paramount Theatre Seattle, WA
10/19-20: Roseland Theater Portland, OR
10/22: Orpheum Theatre Vancouver, BC

 

 

Preview by Tiffany Cuthrell, photo courtesy of Hozier

Nine Inch Nails To Return To Detroit With October Shows

Industrial rock giants, Nine Inch Nails will be playing two shows on October 22nd and 23rd at the Fox Theatre in Detroit.

The band’s last release of 2017 EP “Add Violence” arrived to listeners mysteriously packaged amidst black powder.
Never one for being truly conventional, Nine Inch Nails’ ticket sales for the two shows are far from the norm. Tickets will be available on Saturday May 19th at the Little Caesars Arena Box Office (only in person) on a first come, first served basis. Each fan will be allowed to purchase up to four tickets.
The ticket selling technique will not be unique to Detroit, and will in fact take place for all of the band’s tour stops occurring this fall.

Nine Inch Nails will also release a new studio album, “Bad Witch” on June 22nd. “Bad Witch” is presently available for pre-order on multiple formats.
The “Cold and Black and Infinite” tour will kick off in Phoenix, AZ on September 13th, and wrap up in Los Angeles on December 12th. NIN will be joined on the road by incredible band, The Jesus and Mary Chain.

For more information and for exclusive “Bad Witch” pre-sale bundles, visit the NIN website.

 

Tour Dates:

9/13-14: Comerica Theatre – Phoenix, AZ
9/18-19: Red Rocks Amphitheater – Morrison, CO
9/24: Orpheum Theater – Memphis, TN
9/26-27: Fox Theatre – Atlanta, GA
9/29: Ascend Amphitheater – Nashville, TN
10/9: The Anthem – Washington, DC
10/13-14: Radio City Music Hall – New York, NY
10/19-20: Boch Center – Boston, MA
10/22-23: Fox Theatre – Detroit, MI
10/25-26: Aragon Ballroom – Chicago, IL
11/23-24: Saenger Theatre – New Orleans, LA
11/27-28: The Pavilion at Toyota Music Factory, Irving, TX
12/3: Bill Graham Civic Auditorium, San Francisco, CA
12/7-8, 11-12: Hollywood Palladium – Los Angeles, CA

 

“Bad Witch” Tracklist:

1. Shit Mirror
2. Ahead of Ourselves
3. Play the Goddamned Part
4. God Break Down the Door
5. I’m Not From This World
6. Over and Out

 

Preview by Tiffany Cuthrell, photo courtesy of Nine Inch Nails

Maha Festival Announces Its 10th Anniversary Lineup

Omaha‘s jewel festival, Maha, has announced its exceptional 2018 roster.

The two-day event will take place this year on Friday August 17th and Satruday August 18th in Stinson Park in the lovely Omaha, Nebraska.
The festival will feature 16 bands, and be headlined by the likes of Weezer, indie greats TV On The Radio, Father John Misty, and The Kills.
Maha is celebrating its 10th year in 2018, and is also welcoming volunteers to help run the festival. Maha will exchange admittance to the festival for a helping shift. If you live in the Nebraska region, this seems like a great opportunity to lend a helping hand, and hear some great music!

Two-day general admission early bird passes are available now at $90, with a handsome two-day VIP package (with many perks!) at $290.

For more details and to purchase tickets, you can visit the festival’s official website at MahaMusicFestival.com
You can also visit Maha’s Facebook at Facebook.com/MahaMusicFestival

 

 

 

Spotlight by Tiffany Cuthrell, lineup photos courtesy of Maha Music Festival

Greta Van Fleet Unleash 32 Minutes Of Unapologetic Rock

Frankenmuth, MI natives, Greta Van Fleet have put an exclamation point onto their music scene explosion with a fantastic new double EP, “From The Fires”. The album houses monster single, “Highway Tune”, in addition to three other tracks from their first EP, “Black Smoke Rising”, plus four new songs.

One of the EP’s highlights is the terrific cover of Sam Cooke’s “A Change Is Gonna Come”, effortlessly including a song written in the 1960’s into their repertoire.

When discussing lead singer Josh Kiszka’s voice, it’s impossible not to mention Robert Plant, a comparison that is not thrown around lightly.
This is a voice that comes around maybe once every several decades, maybe even once in a lifetime.
Though GVF clearly draw influence from rock giants of old, they’ve been able to develop a sound that is still altogether unique from their lyrics, right down to the arrangements.

“From The Fires” is an album that is altogether easy to keep on repeat.

It’s difficult to imagine a world in which Greta Van Fleet does not become one of the next greatest rock bands of our time.

 

Tracklist:

1. “Safari Song”
2. “Edge Of Darkness”
3. “Flower Power”
4. “A Change Is Gonna Come”
5. “Highway Tune”
6. “Meet On The Ledge”
7. “Talk On The Street”
8. “Black Smoke Rising”

 

 

 

Review by Tiffany Cuthrell, featured photo by Michael Lavine

The Killers Return With New Album That Lives Up To Namesake

The Killers discography has taken us on a journey from the outside-in narratives of “Mr. Brightside” and “Somebody Told Me”, to their Vegas nod western vibes of “Sam’s Town” (an album whose darkness and mystery carried me through high school!), and even into outer space with “Day & Age”.

My first thought upon starting to play “Wonderful Wonderful” was, “Wait, is this someone blowing through THAT shell?” The mystery was quickly quelled as the title track progressed into a catchy synth, fantastical bassline, and brash rhythm.

Released on Friday September 22nd, the band’s fifth studio album is most assuredly a departure from any of their previous records’ sound, although one that is still Killers to its core. It is fresh, welcome, experimental, and bold.

“Wonderful Wonderful” brings, at times, a self-awareness and cockiness that us listeners haven’t quite heard before from these Vegas gents…. but since they’ve been making us dance, think, and rock since 2001, this type of reflective is forgiven. Besides, such prowess feels more as if the band is in on the joke they are telling, than genuinely full of themselves.

Their lead single, “I’m The Man” has been getting massive radio airplay since its June release.
The song ironically has the unique capability to be empowering and reductive at the same time, lending commentary to a gentleman who’s got it all (a cash register ka-chings in the background). The song carries a Bee Gees-esque stroll throughout, while touching on some Scissor Sisters-jived grooves in a short breakdown.

One of the most touching songs on the album is the slower tempo, “Rut”. Lead singer Brandon Flowers sings, “Don’t give up on me, cause I’m just in a rut. I’m climbing but the walls keep stacking up”. Next on the album is equally motivational “Life To Come”. “I didn’t see this coming, I admit it, but if you think I’ll buckle, forget it.” “Run For Cover” and the track to follow, “Tyson Vs. Douglas” are catchy, danceable, and have the energy of a Springsteen anthem, perfect for driving down the highway.

The album closes out its brand new songs with the grounding jam, “Money On Straight”. The track carries through with an acoustic guitar flow reminiscent of Portugal. The Man, and the occasional Keane-feeling synth (cue Perfect Symmetry’s “Better Than This”).

The entire album seems as though it could have been a massive smash in the 70’s or 80’s, while still housing a modern feel. Despite some Arcade Fire depth, Doors type of vocal echo, and undeniable glam, it is true Killers, through and through.

The Killers have announced a gigantic tour to correspond with the album’s release, taking them from across the United States, into Europe, New Zealand, Australia,
The tour will only have half of the original Killers, sans guitarist Dave Keuning and bassist Mark Stoermer, which is only a change for the live shows.
The band has expressed their sincerest wishes that fans will not be let down with the tour lineup that is to come, as this album was made straight from the heart.

The Killers will make a stop at Detroit’s Masonic Temple on January 15th of next year.

 

Tracklist:

1. “Wonderful Wonderful”
2. “The Man”
3. “Rut”
4. “Life to Come”
5. “Run for Cover”
6. “Tyson vs Douglas”
7. “Some Kind of Love”
8. “Out of My Mind”
9. “The Calling”
10. “Have All the Songs Been Written?”

 

 

 

 

Review by Tiffany Cuthrell, header photo by Erik Weiss