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Multi-Instrumentalist

Music

Mark Houston has made his tribally transfixing alt-folk indie debut with ‘Open up the Pages’

Ironically, Mark Houston’s debut single, ‘Open up the Pages’ is the aural equivalent of a page-turner, each progression immerses you more in the canter, it’s mesmeric and unpredictable in equal measure.

For their debut, the Spokane, WA-residing singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist played with funk, alt-folk and indie-pop elements to construct a sweetly connectable single, confrontational through the directness of the lyricism and soothing through the jangly, shimmering pop-rock melodies.

The grippingly poetic lyrics paired with the tribalistic experimental-to-the-point-of-artfulness instrumentals made Open up the Pages one of the most promising debuts we’ve heard this year. Yeah, it’s only March, but the bar has been set extremely high by Mark Houston.

Open up the Pages is now available to stream via Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Music

From drive to: Mulholland Jive has the ride of a lifetime on debut ‘Adrenaline Junkie’

With a cleverly worded name derived from the rather strangely fascinating mystery movie Mulholland Drive and his own surname, Mulholland Jive leads us eagerly to the top cliff of ultimate excitement on ‘Adrenaline Junkie‘.

Mulholland Jive, is the thrilling debut indie instrumental funk-rock project from Ben Mulholland, who is a Irish-born teacher, multi-instrumentalist artist and composer, based in Cambridgeshire in England. He has skillfully threaded together a band of keen artists to record remotely with him and his production team. They have passionately pushed this wonderful music together sprightly, that was sweetly inspired by Ben’s students at school, by showing their genuine love for his catchy creations.

These fast-paced dynamic sound feet-movers, are a splendid joy to hear, as you feel like the battered soul is being healed throughout and the skill-level is a marvelous assortment of wonder, as you lock into for the ride and don’t ever let go of the groovy feeling inside your bones.

Adrenaline Junkie‘ from Irish artist Ben Mulholland, is that deliciously tasty and funky fresh organically created song that captures your imagination, has you swinging your body around like a piece of rope and has your body grooving along to forget all worries, for a few minutes at least.

Hear this heighten-the-senses instrumental track on Spotify and find out more on IG.

Reviewed by Llewelyn Screen

Music

Need to forgive: Darren Hoffman is simply brilliant on ‘Redemption’

Taken off his latest sizzling EP called ‘Ballad of Miami: An Opera of Land & Violence‘, Darren Hoffman returns with the story of how her forgiveness is a one way street on the excellent ‘Redemption‘.

Darren Hoffman is a fantastic Brooklyn-New York-based, Miami, Florida-born, multi-instrumentalist and producer, who makes that supremely heart-warming type of music that is deeper than most, due to his ever-growing self-awareness with the world around him.

”Ballad of Miami: An Opera of Land & Violence tells the story of love and hate within a child of the city as they witness industrial destruction, toxic culture and an attempt at redemption. I wrote this piece as a contemplative, abstract and poetic exploration in five movements; examining the past, present and future of humankind’s environmental and cultural attack on the land currently known as Miami, Florida.”- Darren Hoffman 

The spacey sounds unleashes into a groovy experience like none other, as you feel the classy and dedication this creation has endured over many months. You feel like this is a road trip gem, a waterfall of spectacular sounds that are blended with precision, that is taken from a world that is being hurt so unnecessarily.

With the supreme skills of Morgan Guerin on the synths, bass, drums and co-production, this is an ear-hugging experience like no other. They way that they appear to mesh these soundscapes into a smorgasbord of delight, is a treat for us all to savor.

Redemption‘ from the delightfully multi-talented NYC producer, drummer, guitarist and singer Darren Hoffman, is one of the better songs you will hear this year and the musicianship here is first class and puts you under s spell that you don’t want to get under from.

Stream this underrated masterpiece here on Spotify and see more on his IG.

Reviewed by Llewelyn Screen

Music

Moving swiftly on: Pamela Hopkins makes it clear that ‘Somebody Here is Walkin’

Pamela Hopkins sings with a real statement that leaves no doubt that her former lover’s indiscretion won’t be tolerated on new single ‘Somebody Here is Walkin‘.

Little Rock, Arkansas, indie-Country singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Pamela Hopkins, is an inspirational woman that performs with a honest style that makes her endearing to all listeners. Her authentic energy transforms the sonic experience and you can’t help but enjoy her music and sensational vocals.

When you have put in the effort to learn the piano, drums, cello, bass, and harmonica, you know instantly that this is a proper musician. Her stunning voice puts the cherry on the top, as you have an electric sensation in your bones when you turn up the volume on high, while sitting back and tapping your feet throughout.

With a glorious vocal ability and a girl-power mentality, she shows all the ladies out there what to do when you have been messed around. Her storytelling is vivid and the excitement she has for music- is crystal clear to see and hear.

Somebody Here is Walkin‘ from the incredibly well-respected and hugely talented Pamela Hopkins is an example to us all that you can be a full-time musician, if you want it enough. After stints in law enforcement and as an English teacher while still performing with her beloved band, she is a bright light of guidance to goodness in this dark world.

Standing up for yourself is the only way to go and anyone that doesn’t respect you enough by cheating when you have given them your heart- deserves to be shown the door swiftly. Never mess with those goodbye shoes as they pack quite the kick.

See the music video on YouTube and find out more about this exceptional talent via her IG.

Reviewed by Llewelyn Screen

Music

The road away from religious extremism: Reverend Bones finds his true path in this greedy world on ‘Tycoon’

Reverend Bones changed his life around recently after being sucked into a world of religious fundamentalism he got sucked into from a very young age. ‘Tycoon‘ is his real story that should make you think and give you chills.

Reverend Bones is the new moniker of Australian singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and climate activist, Michael John Bones. He makes music about his former life being in a religious cult, his life to help the planet survive and his new path to help others. He sings with a eye to the future and the concern in his voice is palpable.

This is the exciting lead single that forms part of his debut LP ‘Escape From Heaven‘, which is a deeply personal exploration on the topic of religious fundamentalism. He wants to help create a safe place for former Exvangelicals, to feel comfortable enough to share their stories of an extreme life, that has changed drastically since getting away from that scary world.

With stories about how sex, money and power rules the world, he sings with such care in a world that has shown him how extremism can be so blind. With so many people unfortunately stuck in a world that they didn’t choose, his vocals are strong, tender and you feel the hairs on the back on your neck shiver. This is music with a real message of hope.

Tycoon‘ from the passionate Australian musician climate activist Reverend Bones, is a sensational song and story that will probably be made into a movie. With a music video on the way that is bound to raise the eyebrows of many, this is a re-awakened creative, who is seeing clearly now and is only getting started.

Hear this conscious lesson that opens your mind on Spotify and see more on IG.

Reviewed by Llewelyn Screen

Music

Keeping it original: Reese Alexander is excellent on indie-rock fused ‘Hive’

Reese Alexander is absolutely spell-binding on his latest single ‘Hive‘ that will have you buzzing with excitement over a song that is so fascinatingly brilliant.

The Las Vegas, Nevada singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and band member of Vagrant Son and Natalie & The Damn Shandys, Reese Alexander, is an artist who projects independence from being boxed into any specific genre.

He punches above his own weight with a song that is so complex and made with a creative style that will have you overawed with what you have just heard.

Taken off the recent full album ‘Decima‘, this is the story of being unnoticed and keeping alive in this crazy world. The underdog stays away from the limelight until the time is right and this shows the humble nature of this top class performer. You can feel that he has lots of love to give and just wants he message to be heard all over the world. Inspiring peace and love is always a welcome notion to portray in this distraction-filled world.

Hive‘ from the original Nevada musician Reese Alexander feels like a timeless song that will be entrenched into the book of underrated quality music that gives the soul a big hug. After a wild year, this is music that makes the world a better place.

Hear this excellent new song on Reese’s Spotify and see the story of his career on IG.

Reviewed by Llewelyn Screen

Music

Baby Jesus Paper Boy – Expensive Dance Music: A Sonically Eccentric Alt Rock Debut

By day, Chicago-based artist Baby Jesus Paper Boy is a public school music teacher, by night, he’s a multi-instrumentalist and Alt Rock alchemist.

Expensive Dance Music is their debut single which dropped in October 2020. It’s an incredible testament to their expressive, energetic style which allowed the track to resonate as playful. But that’s not to say that there isn’t plenty of maturity in the sonically arrestive debut.

It’s jangly, it’s funky, it’s practically Post Punk on ecstasy and the sax solos will leave your mind feeling like microwave soup. There’s plenty going on in the quite literally electrifying soundscape, but Baby Jesus Paper Boy pulls it all together with all too efficacious structuring, and, of course, the serious amount of soul brought to the table with their vocals.

We definitely won’t be making him do lines for this debut.

You can check out Baby Jesus Paper Boy’s debut single for yourselves by heading over to SoundCloud now.

Review by Amelia Vandergast