Alt-rock outfit, Shadow Box, made its debut in 2021 with their album, Flat Moon. The lead single, Without a Word, will quickly become a playlist staple for fans of Faith No More, Soundgarden and Alice in Chains. (I don’t make Mike Patton comparisons easily.) If someone told me that Without a Word was a lost relic from the alt-90s, I’d believe them; the panoramic anthem pulls you in with the intensity of the emotion poured over tight melodic instrumentals.
Shadow Box formed when Mike Roman (guitars, vocals, keyboards) and Mike Rajinone (guitars and vocals) fused their respective hard rock and folk-rock styles. Any difference between them quickly became aural chemistry. We can’t wait to hear what follows.
Describing themselves as ‘a band specialising in substandard music and haphazard melodies’, Just Pathetic’s ‘Since College’ is a poppy-punk number, with elements of Bowling For Soup, The Police, Sum-41, and Journey all mixed up with a Blink 182 tongue-in-cheek bouncy, upbeat ode to time since…well, you guessed it, since college.
There’s a nice little break-down mid-song, a nice flanged-and-octaved guitar-line throughout, and lyrically there’s some not-too-serious digs at teen entitlement, angst, and ‘emo-days’ mixed up with underage drinking and ‘interesting’ cigarettes. It’s fun, it’s vaguely silly, and it’s catchy, energetic, and exuberant mixed in with laid-back ‘stoner’ vocals (there’s a tiny hint at ‘Superfuzz’-era Mudhoney to the delivery), with the fuzziest guitar tone we’ve heard in a long time. It’s the age-old question: ‘Where have the days gone since college?’
You can hear ‘Since College’ on YouTube; check out Just Pathetic here.
After their debut album, ‘Pancea’, amassed over 1.1 million streams and the standout single hit the iTunes UK Top 100 Rock chart at #36, Wisconsin-hailing alt-rock artist, The Star Prairie Project, unleashed their equally as compelling sophomore album ‘Surreal’.
The standout single, The Crying, demonstrates the evocative potential which Rock has always possessed but few have managed to achieve. With a sense of grief running deep in the veins of the classic rock-inspired single, it is safe to presume that plenty of people will find resonance when they hit play, given the 2020 we’ve collectively endured.
With the soul of a rock ballad and the monumental impact of a rock anthem, The Star Prairie Project allows you to enjoy the best of both worlds while introducing you to a brand-new realm of emotionally explosive rock.
The maturity and nuance delivered by The Star Prairie Project with The Crying definitely isn’t something which we encounter frequently. If they’re not on your radar, we’d recommend making room.
The Crying is available to stream now via Spotify.
Kicking off with a beautifully overdriven, edge-of-break-up Tube Screamer-esque guitar tone and kicking drums, Godzukey’s ‘Alibi’ is a proper old-school grungy rock track, all laconic vocals and doomy, portentous bass and guitars. There’s an occasional hint at Mudhoney in the voicing of the fuzzed-up repeating guitar motif, some gentle nods to early Pearl Jam or Mother Love Bone, and a serious bit of guitar-hero shredding from Conrad Bylsma on the playout solo from around 3’30”. Singer/songwriter Jonas Briggs has a perfect early Foo Fighters/Nirvana/Alice In Chains vibe going on around the vocal delivery, but it should be said loudly and clearly: this isn’t simply a retro-reworking of Seattle’s great and good.
There’s a freshness here, too, a contemporary take on that West Coast sound which presumably comes from the creative kick of new connections and neoteric projects. Briggs and Bylsma reconnected to form Godzukey recently, after years of not playing together, recording the EP from which ‘Alibi’ is taken from the ‘music Briggs was carrying around in his head’, and that novel vibrancy comes through in the rawness of the track’s delivery. In Godzukey Portland, Oregon, might just have spawned a new baby monster.
NYC Folk Punk singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist C. Moore Music left us instantly enamoured with their genre-mashing single ‘Knockin’ Around’ which featured on their 11th solo record ‘Unruly’.
He may be a prolific artist, but Knockin Around proves that quantity never comes before quality by boasting transfixingly arrestive hooks right from the intro. The dynamic soundscape may see many of evolutions as it progresses, but your attention will never be in danger of faltering from the grungy almost tribalistic momentum which ebbs and flows in this stunningly crafted single.
With a vocal vibrato which would give Eddie Vedder a run for his money and a freshly sonic smorgasbord of Psych, Blues and Folk on offer instrumentally, Knockin’ Around doesn’t just revive what previous artists allowed us to fall in love with. He brings nostalgic aural elements into a contemporary realm with his own signature sound which will be a hit with any fans of Dinosaur Jr, Pavement and The Jesus and Mary Chain.
You can check out C. Moore Music’s single Knockin’ Around via Bandcamp.
Laissez Tout Brûler is the lead track from the Alt-Rock powerhouse Glitched’s latest EP “Chaos World, Pt. 1 (An Apparition Emerges)”, if you’re aurally sensitive, prepare to feel a little bruised.
Right from the first verse, there’s a magnetically direct invitation to immerse yourself in the soundscape. The steadiness of the preceding verses makes the alchemy in the successive ones even more exhilarating. Think along the lines of Dinosaur Jr’s Feel the Pain.
When the momentum builds in the choruses, so does Glitched’s playful energy which tears through the melancholy which was laid out in the former verses. After hearing Laissez Tout Brûler, I have no doubt that Glitched could give Foo Fighters a run for their money live, their sound is just as capable of filling a stadium. Plus there’s the extra added bonus of Laissez Tout Brûler being a uniquely unpredictable track which experimentally unravels while sweeping across the full tonal palette.
US Rock artist Amenazar saw their inception almost three decades ago but judging by the magnetism found in their latest single “Lie to Me” they’re just as valuable to the airwaves as they were when they made their debut.
The mark of any good artist is their ability to make you feel instead of listen. And my God, if any Rock artist had the capacity to tear my soul in two with the provocativeness of their sound, it’s Amenazar.
With Lie to Me, they found the perfect balance of sticky-sweet romantic sincerity and rock n roll intensity. But where they truly set themselves apart is through their ability to smash through classic rock archetypes. As great as Guns n Roses and Aerosmith are, we don’t need another act assimilating them. There was definitely no danger of Lie to Me resonating as assimilative with Amenazar’s tendency to pull influence from a wide array of influences, from Alt 90s, to Industrial Grunge to Classic Southern Rock, it’s all in there.
You can check out Lie to Me for yourselves by heading over to YouTube.
With their latest single “Watchu Want”, trailblazing Alt-Rock artist Matt Moody added Grunge to their classic anthemic Rock signature sound. Bringing it right back to the Alt 90s style while giving fans of contemporary Rock something fresh to sink their teeth into.
With Indie Pop elements also weaved into the mix, Watchu Want is a rhythmically slick earworm which we can’t help getting excited about.
Matt Moody may just be the only artist capable of uniting fans of Aerosmith and fans of Dinosaur Jr with one release. You get the sexy swaggering vocal dynamics alongside the experimentally mind-melting tones found in Grunge and Dream Pop, what more could you possibly ask for?
You can check out Watchu Want from the date of release on October 30th by heading over to SoundCloud.
Many artists can only dream of amassing the same amount of hype around their debut release as Odd Ones Out did with their angsty, immersive Lo-Fi Alt-Rock debut single “I’ll Be Fine”.
The defiantly-titled sludgy track has the potential to leave Trap kids and fans of noisy, sludgy Garage Rock alike enamoured. The candid, sourly soulful vibe of the inventively textured track is bang on trend.
The jangly indie guitar notes find just enough room to ring out in the high-energy production which unravels with an intensely emotive sting, especially thanks to the despondently magnetic vocals which will throw you right back to the Alt-90s.
You can check out I’ll Be Fine by heading over to Spotify.
Toronto-based artist Down the Void has released yet another morosely masterful feat of genre-crumbling Alt Rock with their single “Electric Beauty”.
Fans of Pavement, Fidlar and Dinosaur Jr will definitely want to make time for the release which carries plenty of the trademarks of the Alt 90s style while simultaneously allowing Down the Void to stamp down their own signature sound.
The atmosphere which spills from the tight synergy of the instrumentals can only be described as alchemic while the raw vocals project plenty of rugged soul into the quite literally mesmerising soundscape.
Shimmering tones effervesce in the Grunge-laden Garage hit which will leave you with the compulsion to hit repeat to experience the stunning progressions once more. I can only imagine how mind-altering it would be to witness their sonic deftly-crafted walls of noise live.
Down the Void’s East Coast tour may have been cancelled and the official release of their album may have been postponed, but something tells me that in spite of lockdown, Down the Void’s success is inevitable.
You can check out Electric Beauty for yourselves via Bandcamp.