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Marisha Wallace, Tomorrow was released on December 4, 2020.

 

"Marisha’s first album is packed with uplifting show songs and sing-along pop classics, performed with love and emotion. A delightful force of nature, she is set to light up the Winter months with her sheer positivity and joy!

 

...

 

it is her positive attitude, exuberant personality and a touch of Southern hospitality that makes her instantly loveable. With a sensational voice that is guaranteed to bring a chill to your spine and a tear to your eye, she proves she is more than a singer, more than a performer, she is an inspiration. When Marisha tells you she’s “here to stay”, you’d better believe it!"

 

You can read the rest of the review here...

 

All I can say about her voice is WOW. 

 

 

 

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I’m at the point in my audio journey (and I’m sure a few of you are too) where I really don’t need more gear, are at least gear that is significantly better than what I already have is beyond my means

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Robin Trower, Maxi Priest, Livingstone Brown, United State of Mind was released on October 9, 2020.   "Three legendary artists singer/songwriter Maxi Priest, guitarist Robin Trower, and prod

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Late Arriving Valentine's Day music:

 

“It’s always been a joke in the King Crimson camp that there’s never a line for the women’s restrooms during intermissions,” says Deborah Mastelotto. “King Crimson plays loud and it’s often intense and raucous. But it can also be haunting and melodic, with some of the most beautiful lyrics ever. We wanted to help uncover that sweetness and introduce the songs to a different type of audience .”
So, Valentine’s Day 2021 sees an unexpected surprise with the release of A Romantic’s Guide to King Crimson, a 12-track album of reinvented King Crimson material by the husband-and-wife duo Deborah and Pat Mastelotto. The addition of a female singer automatically changes the feel of those songs and places them in a different genre. Our idea is to create a way for people, especially women, to appreciate the beauty of King Crimson’s music without the fear and sometimes resistance attached to the word ‘prog’ getting in the way.”

 

interesting concept, however, half way through its initial spin, I conceded to my wife who has bravely taken in King Crimson with me,  The line at the beer concession, shall we go? 

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Willie Nelson, That's Life was released on February 26, 2021.

 

This is Willie's second tribute album to Frank Sinatra.

 

"It ought to be clear now, if it hadn’t become obvious already, that Willie Nelson’s a musical chameleon, unbounded by any initial identification with country. Even at the age of 87, his musical ambition appears as resilient as ever, evidence of an unflappable desire to transcend any and all musical boundaries, be it Outlaw Americana, folk, rock, roots, reggae or any other style that falls in-between. That said, his love for the great American songbook found him laying a path that others would eventually follow— Bob Dylan, Carly Simon, Linda Ronstadt and Rod Stewart, among the many. Yet even while his widely heralded album Stardust made those intentions clear upon its release, some 43 years ago this April, a consistent series of covers littered his recorded repertoire since very early on."

 

You can read the rest of the review here...

 

 

 

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Kansas, The Absence of Presence was released on July 17, 2020.

 

"Take a moment to think about the phrase The Absence of Presence. It could easily describe the locked-down state in which the human race has recently found itself. It also happens to be the title of Kansas’ new studio album, their sixteenth, due for release in June 26th, 20201. It should immediately be noted that The Absence of Presence was written and recorded well before the worldwide lockdown that began in March 2020, yet its lyrics and themes seem to be eerily prescient of the crisis. Either Kansas are fortune-tellers, or their timing is just inconceivably coincidental."

 

1 delayed by manufacturing.

 

 

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George Benson, Weekend In London was released on November 13, 2020.

 

"Benson's new release is, to say the least, a truly spectacular live performance called Weekend In London, recorded in 2019 at the Ronnie Scott's Jazz Club in London, UK, where a very restricted amount of people were invited to this very special one-off event, where Benson, supported by a true R&B Orchestra on stage, showed still an incredible artistic stamina at every imaginable level, as a guitarist and as a singer too."

 

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Bruce Springsteen, Letter to You was released on October 23, 2020.

 

"The sentimentality that pulses through Letter to You feels more authentic and personal than the fictional stories he dreamt up in his early work or even his recent dives into nostalgia, like his Magic album. He recorded the album in just five days, live in the studio with the E Street Band. Together, they sound comfortable rescaling the Phil Spector-inspired Wall of Sound they built in the Seventies with glockenspiels, saxophone expositions, and thousands of guitars. When Springsteen sings about glory days, this time, they’re his own glory days."

 

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The Delvon Lamarr Organ Trio, I Told You So was released on Jan 29, 2021.

 

"On this, the band’s second studio full length after hundreds of live dates, the threesome lock in for forty five minutes of organic funk with bubbling, robust elements of jazz and soul to set the mixture percolating. The opening “Hole In One” immediately establishes the tone. James picks out a nifty riff quickly joined by Lamarr’s meaty B3 and drummer Grant Schroff’s fatback drums for 4 ½ minutes of steaming funk where the mid-tempo beat drills the music home. The rest of this rousing album follows a similar blueprint."

 

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TWO TIME GRAMMY-nominated Joe Bonamassa is breaking out the blues-rock power trio in an epic PAY-PER-VIEW CONCERT on Thursday, April 1st at 8PM CENTRAL / 9PM EASTERN / 6PM PACIFIC.

 

 

 

https://jbonamassa.com/streaming/acl/?mkt_tok=MTEzLUZMVy04MTQAAAF75oIGuULshvp1rbPlD63J7HjpMo2Ilnqb6CVa6nQlsVDrssfEk26vZAe-7sG1RH_PFzfIk2kZM1gNT6mQkzW7wY3Ap_pAVH0mgASVbF8SjQ

 

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Hot Damn Horns, Shake Your Leg was released on November 20, 2020.

 

"Hot Damn Horns & The Soul Machine is an instrumental funk & soul band from Germany.   This cool collective has just released its debut CD titled ‘Shake Your Leg’ which includes outstanding tracks such as ‘At The Laundromat’ and ‘Help’.  Much like the entire album, both are in the best traditions of brass driven funk as immortalised by super groups such as Tower Of Power and East Bay Soul.  In terms of personal favourites it is hard to beat the sultry ‘Catch The Drift’ which comes complete with flashes of Hammond B3 that serve to bestow a wonderful retro feel to the whole piece."

 

You can read the article here...

 

 

 

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Paul McCartney, III was released on December 18, 2020.

 

"Every decade should kick off with a Paul McCartney one-man-band album — and this one needs it more than most. McCartney III carries on his tradition of homemade solo records, in the mode of his acoustic 1970 debut and his 1980 synth-pop oddity McCartney II. Like its two predecessors, it’s Macca at his most playful. He’s not sweating about being a legend, a genius, or a Beatle — just a family man kicking back in quarantine, writing a few songs to keep his juices flowing. Like the rest of us, he’s been in lockdown, hanging out on his daughter’s farm, grandchildren on his knee, strumming his acoustic guitar in the English summer sun. It’s the warmest and friendliest of quarantine albums — it’s basically Ram meets Folklore."

 

You can read the rest of the review here...

 

 

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Sammy Hagar and The Circle, Lockdown 2020 was released on January 8, 2021.

 

"Sammy Hagar and the Circle have added some hard-rock heft to David Bowie’s “Heroes,” the latest song they’ve released from their quarantine recording sessions and the lead single from their upcoming Lockdown 2020 album."

 

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This is Sammy and crew adding their flavor of rock'n'roll ass kicking to a selection of cover tunes. Here's the track list:

 

1. “Funky Feng Shui”
2. “Won’t Get Fooled Again” (The Who)
3. “Good Enough” (Van Halen)
4. “Three Little Birds” (Bob Marley)
5. “Whole Lotta Rosie” (AC/DC)
6. “For What It’s Worth” (Buffalo Springfield)
7. “Keep A-Knockin'” (Little Richard)
8. “Right Now” (Van Halen)
9. “Don’t Tell Me What Love Can Do” (Van Halen)
10. “Sympathy for the Human” (Sammy Hagar & The Wabos)
11. “Heroes” (David Bowie)

 

 

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The Foo Fighters, Medicine at Midnight was released on February 5, 2021.

 

"Foo Fighters have been a reliable alt-rock institution for more than 25 years. A band with that kind of august track record could get bored or complacent with their job. But Dave Grohl and Co. just keep happily chugging along, putting out solid-to-great records, satisfying their enormous fan base with killer stadium shows, and keeping things fresh for themselves by coming up with interesting concepts (like their 2014 HBO doc series/album Sonic Highways) and tossed-off collaborations with pals like Justin Timberlake, Rick Astley, or Serj Tankian."

 

You can read the rest of the review here...

 

 

 

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Nick Cave and Warren Ellis, Carnage was released on February 25, 2021.

 

"Nick Cave’s cinematic work with his bandmate Warren Ellis is a slight departure from last decade’s trilogy of albums. It’s defined by its stark contrasts, at turns brutal, surreal, and romantic."

 

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Alice Cooper, Detroit Stories was released on February 26, 2021.

 

"So it’s no surprise that the best songs on Cooper’s 21st solo album, Detroit Stories, are the funniest. “Our Love Will Change the World” is a jaunty cover of an ironic ditty by the Michigan power-pop group Outrageous Cherry, and in Cooper’s hands, it sounds like The Partridge Family on angel dust, complete with finger snaps, as the ever-sarcastic singer describes his dream utopia as a dystopia. “You may not like [the world] now,” he sings with a smirk, “but you’ll get used to it.” “Go Man Go” is a sendup of toxic masculinity set to a Replacements-style “I Don’t Know” guitar riff (cowritten by the MC5’s Wayne Kramer), on which Cooper sings, “[My girlfriend] knows that I’m a man” and then immediately follows that line with, “She knows that I’m a moron, but that’s OK.” And his “Wonderful World” has nothing to do with Louis Armstrong’s trees of green and red roses, too, but rather, “It would be a wonderful world if everyone was like me.”

 

You can read the rest of the review here...

 

 

 

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Pat Metheny, Road to the Sun was released on March 5, 2021.

 

"Metheny speaks beautifully about jazz when he says, “it’s essential to hear people create their own music ... What we value about Miles Davis’s Kind of Blue and John Coltrane’s A Love Supreme is that they speak so vitally about their time.” In his new BMG Modern Recordings album, Road to the Sun, he skillfully brings his own distinctive musical vision to a new genre with two wonderful classical compositions for guitar, Four Paths of Light, written for Jason Vieaux, and Road to the Sun, written for the Los Angeles Guitar Quartet."

 

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Caroline Shaw, The Narrow Sea was released on January 22, 2021.

 

"The Pulitzer Prize-winning composer draws inspiration from shifting tides and centuries-old hymns for a piece that reckons with the unease of feeling adrift in the universe.

 

Caroline Shaw’s approach to oceanic immersion is less fraught, but the Pulitzer-winning composer’s newest work is a similarly upending force. With Narrow Sea, Shaw draws inspiration from shifting tides and centuries-old hymns for a piece that reckons with the unease of feeling adrift in the universe."

 

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Steve Hackett, Under a Mediterranean Sky was released on January 22, 2021.

 

‘Under A Mediterranean Sky’ is the first new acoustic solo album from legendary guitarist Steve Hackett, since 2008’s ‘Tribute’ – a record that saw him tackling some of the beautiful classical pieces that his guitar idols had also put their hand to. This new album however takes inspiration from Steve’s extensive travels around the Mediterranean. “A lot of acoustic ideas had been forming over the years, and it felt like the perfect time to create this album,” notes Hackett, “a time to contemplate the places we’ve visited around the Mediterranean with the kind of music which evolved from the world of imagination.”

 

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Sting, Duets was released on March 19, 2021.

 

"At 69 years of age and over 7 million monthly listeners on Spotify, English musician Sting would appear to have a fair amount of pull in the music industry. A look at the guest performers on his new compilation album, Duets, confirms the distinctive vocalist’s tenured clout as a musician’s musician.

 

The record succeeds in emphasizing collaborative magic over star power. More under-the-radar artists like Melody Gardot and Mylène Farmer appear early in the running order, while heavy hitters like Annie Lennox and Shaggy emerge in the middle of the album. The songs on Duets cannot easily be categorized as belonging wholly to Sting. Each takes on a life of its own, and infuses the character of its guest performer."

 

You can read the rest of the review here...

 

Duets Tracklist

1. “Little Something” with Melody Gardot
2. “It’s Probably Me” with Eric Clapton
3. “Stolen Car” with Mylène Farmer
4. “Desert Rose” with Cheb Mami
5. “Rise & Fall” with Craig David
6. “Whenever I Say Your Name” with Mary J. Blige
7. “Don’t Make Me Wait” with Shaggy
8. “Reste” with GIMS
9. “We’ll Be Together” with Annie Lennox
10. “L’amour C’est Comme Un Jour” with Charles Aznavour
11. “My Funny Valentine” with Herbie Hancock
12. “Fragile” with Julio Iglesias
13. “Mama” with Gashi
14. “September” with Zucchero
15. “Practical Arrangement” with Jo Lawry
16. “None of Us Are Free” with Sam Moore
17. “In the Wee Small Hours of the Morning” with Chris Botti

 

 

 

 

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Evanescence, The Bitter Truth was released on March 26, 2021.

 

Evanescence are mostly known for introspective emotional lyrics, but The Bitter Truth touches on social issues more than the band’s past efforts. For example, single “Use My Voice” was influenced by the sexual assault of Chanel Miller by Brock Turner, and was also used as part of a HeadCount campaign to get out the vote in 2020. Lyrics like, “Gather your friends and wave your gun in my face/ But I will use my voice” are as politically charged as they are emotional. Adding to the power of the song are guest vocals from Lzzy Hale, Taylor Momsen, Sharon Den Adel, Amy Lee’s sisters, and others.

 

You can read the rest of the review here...

 

 

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Edie Brickell & The New Bohemians, Hunter & The Dog Star was released on February 19, 2021.

 

"Hunter And The Dog Star is the band’s fifth studio album and across eleven new songs, furthers their reputation as an unclassifiable, genre-blending force. Produced by Kyle Crusham and recorded at Arlyn Studios in Austin, TX, the album is already receiving widespread critical acclaim: "

 

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