Emerald Portal - All The Running

Emerald Portal is the brainchild of Thomas Ouziel and Brad Rundblade, two musicians, who at a young age immersed themselves into all aspects of art. As a sound designer and screenwriter, respectively, their music is heavily influenced by their cinematic backgrounds. Emerald Portal seeks to make engaging music that not only tells stories, but transports listeners.

Born in Europe, Thomas from Paris, France and Brad from Crete, Greece, both grew up learning how to play piano and guitar. They each spent years playing music before entering the film industry. Upon meeting on the set of a music video in Los Angeles, where the duo currently live, they found they had a mutual interest in creating music and began working on a number of songs. After a period of creative activity they had written enough material for their album, Beyond The Edge Of Reason, independently released in 2015.

Their new EP, Trouble In Paradise, is set for release later this year. The first single from the EP is out now and it's called All The Running. It's an awesome melancholic, cinematic track that wouldn't have been out of space on the 2002 Feeder's album Comfort In Sound.

Watch the video for All The Running clicking on the image and stay tuned for further news about Emerald Portal.

A new Australian bright light: TRACES giovedì, 16 febbraio 2017 21:09 by madseason
Traces - The Light

Traces are an Alternative Rock quartet from Tamworth, Australia. Forming in early 2016 after playing in various bands together for the past 5 years, singer/guitarist Jack Pallett, guitarist Isaiah Olig-Grennan, bassist/ vocalist/keyboardist Ryan Crane and drummer Sam Jackson carried on the name from one of their previous bands and started fresh musically. Incorporating their love of heavy music and rock music with electronic and soundtracks the four aim to create the music that they want to hear.

Everything you hear and see about Traces is a true representation and expression of the band itself: from producing and recording their own music to creating their own artwork, visuals and videos, completely independent of people outside of the band.

Traces' debuted in September 2014 with the 6-track EP Illumination, but it's the brand new single The Light that caught my attention, as it's an atmospheric electro-rock track with a progressive/alternative metal build that recalls one of my favourite band of the genre, Ra.

The Light was independently released last February 12: stream and buy it on the group's BandCamp page and watch the official video clicking on the image above. Stay tuned for more info about this awesome band.

All These Countless Nights with DEAF HAVANA martedì, 14 febbraio 2017 21:30 by madseason
Deaf Havana - Trigger

I always like to write a few lines about the awesome English alternative rockers Deaf Havana when they release a new album, even if they're an established act now.

Deaf Havana's brand new record is titled All These Countless Nights and was released on 27 January 2017 through So Recordings.

The album was produced and mixed by Adam Noble (Placebo, Nothing But Thieves, The Pineapple Thief) and is the successor of the critical acclaimed Old Souls and debuted on the UK Albums Chart at number 5 and topped the UK Independent Albums Chart!

All These Countless Nights is the most eclectic and emotional album of their career, as band frontman's James Veck-Gilodi chose a different approach to songwriting this time, with less self-imposed rules and more creative freedom.

"It all came from me needing to discover myself, find my feet and realise who I am," James says. "I'm trying to be a real person. I didn't really feel like one before."

All These Countless Nights features the singles SingFever and Trigger; the latter had originally premiered in 2014 on the band's European tour: at that time the band had planned to record new material but were dropped from their record label, BMG. Watch the official video for Trigger clicking on the image and stream the whole album on Spotify.

Get lost with new AMBER RUN's album sabato, 11 febbraio 2017 16:08 by madseason
Amber Run - Fickle Game

Amber Run, the indie pop/alternative rock band from Nottingham, UK, is releasing their sophomore full-length album today, February 10.

The follow-up to their debut 5AM (2015), which has been streamed over 40 million times in North America, is titled For A Moment, I Was Lost and it's the first one on Dine Alone Records, to which the band's recently signed. It was produced by Ben Allen (Bombay Bicycle Club, Deerhunter, Cee Lo Green) and marks a clear evolution in sound and songwriting.

"We have always believed in evolution as a band. Not reinvention so much as taking what's already there and making it better" said the guys in Amber Run, "The new album trims the fat from our previous music, and get down to the bare bones of the songs. We're songwriters, and where 5AM was a collection of songs written in our youth, these new songs are, for us, a timely response to more recent experiences."

The leading single off the new album is Perfect: the track is the center-point to the record and finds the band at their most brooding and abrasive, as crunching guitars swirl around Joe Keogh's looming refrain "karma, karma, you reap what you sow."

Four other singles were lift off from For A Moment, I Was LostHaze, Stranger, No Answers and Fickle Game; watch the video for this last one clicking on the image and stream the whole album on Spotify.

Synesthesia: sophomore release for COURAGE MY LOVE mercoledì, 8 febbraio 2017 22:23 by madseason
Courage My Love - Stereo

Canadian recording artists Courage My Love have released their new, sophomore album Synesthesia last Friday, February 3, via InVogue Records.
Produced by David Bendeth (Young Guns, Tonight Alive, Art Of Dying and a million more) and recorded in Toronto at Noble Studios and Pocket Studios, Synesthesia introduces a new arsenal of sounds for the Kitchener, Ontario, based trio who have made a name for themselves and built a strong following on a number of tours across North America and Europe.

Defined as a blending of the senses where the stimulation of one sense leads to an automatic, involuntary reaction in another, like hearing in colour, Synesthesia was titled to reflect Courage My Love's newfound stylistic maturity.

On Synthesthesia, Mercedes Arn-Horn, her sister Phoenix and Brandon Lockwood approached the songwriting phase with a poppier sensibility; Phoenix taught herself synth programming which helped shape the sound of the new album: thus CML's alternative and indie influenced songs have a new, mainstream appeal that should grant the band a huge success.

Take as example of the "new" sound the singles Stereo (watch the Emma Higgins-directed video clicking on the image) and Animal Heart. Or, even better, stream the whole new album on Spotify.

Higher and higher with LIFE ON PLANET 9 lunedì, 6 febbraio 2017 21:30 by madseason
Life On Planet 9 - Higher

Album number 3 for Life On Planet 9, the pseudonym for experimental releases used by Pete Murray and Neil Godfrey of American hard rock band Lo-Pro.

While the band's first album Bittersweet was an acoustic escape from the duo's other heavy projects, distorted guitars crept back into their second album The Theory of Everything and are now very much a part of this third album titled Higher.

Higher was independently released last January 31; it was produced, as the previous ones, by Pete Murray and is an excellent electronic rock/dream pop album that fans of Massive Attack, U2, M83, 30 Seconds To Mars, Atticus Fault, Porcupine Tree, Peter Gabriel and Marillion simply can't miss.

From the ethereal guitar/synth scape of the opening track Wake Up to the characteristic wall of guitars in Go, from the soulful catchiness of the single All Your Words (imagine Simple Minds hybridize with Massive Attack) to the anthemic chorus of Last Summer, the new album marks an exciting union of Murray and Godfrey's classic sound with the new frontier that is Life On Planet 9.

Stream Higher on Spotify clicking on the image and discover a sure contender for Best Album of the year.

Primal Static

Primal Static, from Austin, TX, are two talented, lifelong musicians, G.T., singer/guitarist and HouFei, keyboardist/bassist.

Born and raised in China, HouFei was pursuing a doctoral degree in piano at the world-renowned Peabody Conservatory in Baltimore when she met self-taught musician and wild child, G.T. HouFei recalls that G.T. was a furious wild fire that sparked life and music for her. When she called his voicemail for the first time, she was met with a heart-wrenching guitar solo and time stood still. The pair has worked together since to create the honest and organic sound that is Primal Static.

Primal Static's latest project is titled Panstylistic and was released last Friday, January 27. Produced by G.T. at the Cat House in Austin and mastered by Brian Lucey (Arctic Monkeys, Cage The Elephant, The Black Keys), it's a captivating EP that captures all of the components heard in alternative rock, yet is mixed with an eclectic and hypnotic rock sound and the soul found in blues.

Panstylistic is available on iTunesSpotify or SoundCloud, so go check it now.

A number 1 for LIO NICOL mercoledì, 1 febbraio 2017 22:08 by madseason
Lio Nicol - 1

Some weeks ago I introduced to my reader Lio Nicol, an awesome indie-pop songwriter and performer from Missoula, Montana, inspired by the legendary Diane Warren.

At that time, Lio had just released her first single Blame, a moving pop anthem, deep and catchy at the same time. Blame is the first single off Lio's debut EP 1, independently released last Friday, January 27.

1 was produced by Wesley Switzer of Milestone Studios and features 4 tracks: all of them are really worth your attention. The album opener They Sent You Back Down is an upbeat, captivating anthem; the second track, Day Job, is a soulful indie-pop number; after Blame, the mini-album closes with Take Me Away, a special track for the talented pianist and songwriter, as it was the first song she wrote on piano entirely alone.

Stream 1 on Spotify or on SoundCloud and keep on supporting great independent artists.