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Music Review: Everything You Should Know by Silence is Sexy

Year: 2008
Tracks: 12 (this release)
Genre: Indie Rock, Alternative Rock, Pop Rock, Rock
Similar Artists: Coldplay, Radiohead, Monoral, Screaming Trees
Online: Facebook, Jamendo, Bandcamp, FreeMusicArchive

Dutch band Silence is Sexy is one of the earliest bands that I came across on Jamendo. Whilst the members seem to have moved on to other projects, their several albums remain among the personal favorites of my music collection. Today, I will be focusing on one of the earliest of their releases, Everything You Should Know. Please note that this album is what led to me becoming a fan of their music in the first place. Today’s review is going to be short but I hope it is helpful.

Everything You Should Know is a collection of twelve songs with a gritty acoustic sound that contrasts pleasantly with the occasional orchestral elements. The compositions are solid, backed up by excellent instrumental work and crisp sound engineering. Whilst the rest of the Silence is Sexy catalog is enjoyable, I consider this album to be their best so far.
The album begins on a strong front, with the song This is Our Start?. This track sets the stage for the rest of what appears to be an anthology of musical stories. Whilst the album contains more melancholic songs, we see glimmers of hope throughout. This is made very clear with the second track Stories Yet to Come, the declaration that moments of sadness are not the end as much as it feels like it at the time.
Do have any favorite songs on this album? Yes. The eighth track Reptiles is energetic and a lot of fun to listen to. It is hands-down my top pick for the album. The song resonates with me and I find myself listening to it on its own time and time again.

In conclusion, I really enjoyed this album. If you a writer looking for a soundtrack for a modern-day drama or urban fantasy character-driven story, then this album is a solid pick. Artists looking for some melancholic and reflective songs to help with their own projects should probably check out this album as well. I also recommend checking out the album if you are a fan of the musical genres listed above.

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Music Review: Cinematic Volume 1 by Grégoire Lourme

Year: 2012
Tracks: 18 (this release
Genre: Soundtrack, Classical, Orchestral, Electronic, Ambient, World
Similar Artists: Celestial Aeon Project, MuswayStudio, Epic Soul Factory
Online: Jamendo, IMDB

Grégoire Lourme is a French composer that is one of the more prolific artists on Jamendo. Whilst his web presence is somewhat lacking, one gets the impression that the time that he would otherwise be spent social networking is directed to composing his rather expansive music catalogue. His albums are usually tied together by a theme, such as his 2017 release Spy. Today, I am discussing the first in his lengthy Cinematic theme series.

Volume 1 is a collection of instrumental tracks perfect for action, suspense, drama and science fiction sequences. The tracks are full-length and well-composed, making use of a big orchestra sound. It also utilizes pacing to great effect. I would usually go into vocals and lyrics, but given that it is an instrumental album it is not applicable. What I will say is that each track is a pleasure to listen to.
Favourite composition? If I had to chose a favourite track, I think it would be the ninth track The Empire Burns. The composition has a wonderful build-up and ability to elicit emotion from the listener that is prevalent in many of Lourme’s songs.

Whilst the tracks are geared towards film and television, they also work well as the soundtrack for writing science fiction, fantasy, action and adventure stories. If that interests you, I’d recommend checking out this album as well as Grégoire Lourme’s other releases. There is a lot on offer, so be sure to check out his music. 


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Music Review: Infinity by Slava Prox

Year: 2014
Genre: Electronic Rock, Hip-Hop, Pop, Dance
Online: Official Website, Jamendo, Twitter (protected tweets – not the case a few months ago), Facebook
Tracks: 9 (this release)

As with much of my music collection, I discovered Slava Prox’s catalogue whilst perusing the offerings at Jamendo. Whilst I listened to his album We Breathe Like One initially, I’ve decided to arbitrarily review Infinity instead because I like both albums and had to chose which one to review first.

Slava Prox is the brainchild of Vyacheslav Charikov, a rather unique musician based in Moscow, Russia. His music is an odd blend of Electronic Rock and Hip-Hop, which makes it difficult to find similar artists. Probably the closest that I can think of are Ocean Jet and Luzius Stone, but even that is misleading because it doesn’t tell you in which way they are similar. In this case, there is an industrial edge that manages to permeate the music of each of these artists.
Whilst there is not necessarily a theme to Infinity, the album consists of solid compositions backed by decent performances and top-notch sound engineering. There is a feeling of the epic throughout all of Slava Prox’s music, and this album is no exception. The songs are a good lesson in how to build tempo over time to maximise emotional effect. There is an efficiency to how all of those elements work together that makes me listen to this album time and time again. In my personal opinion, some if not all of the songs on this album easily rival the quality of music in competitions such as Eurovision, but without the cheese factor.
Do I have a favourite song? I really adore the second track Variants. I find myself listening to this song more than the others on the album because of an old-school guitars and percussion. There is a quirky Euro-rock edge to it that just resonates with me. Perhaps that makes me a weirdo. 😀 I also adore the fifth track Melting Days, which has this nice electronic rock dance edge to it that is perfect for an energetic dance party. This song is probably closer to a typical dance track but I don’t necessarily consider this a bad thing because it makes use of the better elements of electronic dance music.

I highly recommend this album to anyone looking some electronic rock with an unusual edge. The industrial and electronic aspects make a great soundtrack for fiction set in modern industrial and/or science fiction settings. I’d also recommend this album to musicians and artists looking for inspiration for their next project.

If you listen to this album and think of similar artists, feel free to drop me a line. I’d love to also see what you guys think of the album.


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Music Review: We Belong by FM Pilots

Year: 2012
Genre: Rock, Pop, Roots Rock, Heartland Rock
Similar Artists: Hootie and the Blowfish, Barenaked Ladies, OneRepublic
Online: Official Website, Jamendo, FacebookTwitter, YouTube
Tracks:

  1. No Time to Waste
  2. Brighter
  3. Eyes open
  4. Counting Costs
  5. We Belong

A few years ago, I came across Oklahoma-based FM Pilots via one of Jamendo’s playlists. I forget which song it was but it was enough for me to check out the other music they’d released on the platform. And that is how I came to download We Belong, which is still an album I listen to a lot.

Whilst FM Pilots doesn’t try to reinvent the wheel, it delivers well-constructed songs that are backed up by solid performances and song engineering. The songs on this release are also quite varied in style, allowing the listener to get an idea of how much talent these guys have. It is just a pleasure to listen to time and time again.
Do I have a favourite song on this release? Whilst I enjoy each song, the last track We Belong just knocks it out of the park. It is such a wonderful love song that would be perfect for that soundtrack of a romantic drama.

Yes, I do adore this album. Yes, you should give it a listen. While you are at it, check out the rest of FM Pilots’ catalogue via their official website. Now hop to it!


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Music Review: Crossing State Lines by Bryyn

Year: 2011
Genre: Singer/Songwriter, Indie Folk, Shoegaze, Acoustic, Country
Similar Artists: [Jamendo: Michael Ellis, Nicolas Falcon, The Grus, Azwell and  WhiteRoom], [Other: Tally Hall, Midlake, Grand Hallway and The Autumn Defense]
Online: Official Website, Jamendo, Facebook, Twitter
Tracks:

  1. Giraffe
  2. All My Life
  3. Dubai
  4. End of the Age
  5. Coffee in Tokyo
  6. Interlude
  7. Salvador
  8. Got it Done
  9. Abba Ingee
  10. Love Song
  11. Tunisia

Crossing State Lines is 2011 album release of prolific singer-songwriter Bryyn. It is an Indie Folk album that delivers eleven well-crafted tracks that have a whimsical edge to them. My initial reaction when I heard the album was that it reminded me of Tally Hall. If you don’t know who Tally Hall is, then I recommend that you guys check out his music as well. In any case, I was pretty happy with the albums as a whole.

Do I have any favourite tracks? If I had to chose it would be the fifth track, Coffee in Tokyo. This would be followed up closely by the sixth track which is a short instrumental piece entitled Interlude. I find myself listening to those two tracks more frequently than other tracks on the album. Coffee in Tokyo has a wonderful retro appeal reminiscent of Midlake whilst Interlude brings to mind music by The Grus without vocals.

In conclusion, this album is a pure joy to listen to. If you are looking for a contemporary or easy listening soundtrack for your creative projects then I highly recommend Crossing State Lines. If you decide to check out the album, then be sure to check out the rest of Bryyn’s catalogue as well as that of the similar artists listed at the top of this post. I am sure that you’ll find something that you’ll enjoy in there.

Have other Jamendo artists that you want me to check out? Be sure to let me know in the comments sections or by dropping me a line via the contact page.


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Music Review: Comets by Falling Blind

Year: 2010
Genre: Rock, Hard Rock, Indie Rock
Similar Artists: Breaking Benjamin, Atris, Tool, Dead Letter Circus, Icarus Crash (Spanish rock group)
Online: OfficialJamendo, Facebook
Tracks:

  1. The Intent
  2. Complex Story
  3. Cupid Kills
  4. Comets
  5. Modest Opinion
  6. Reason

I’ve listened to a lot of reviews over the years. However, it isn’t very often that I get around to reviewing artists that regularly visit Australia. In the case of Falling Blind, they do the rounds at various music festivals up the coast. However, it wasn’t until last year that I got around to listening to their music. It was well worth the listen.

Comets is a six-track release that gives the sense of a musical drama. Not in the same style as Muse, mind you, but the songs feel connected by a central storyline. Unlike a few bands that have attempted this, Falling Blind succeeds in delivering something meaningful. Of course, this does mean that the songs are best played in order to get the most out of Comets.

Do I have any favourite songs? Whilst I love each song on this album, I find myself listening to Cupid Kills more often than other tracks. The song has flawless changes of pace that make it an epic love song that would be an awesome wedding song.

In conclusion, I absolutely love this album. It has become a regular listen and something that always manages to bring a smile to my face. I recommend it to fans of rock and for writers looking for an epic, action-packed rock soundtrack. Suggested Genres? Urban Fantasy (low magic) Action, Post-Apocalyptic Action Adventure, Martial Arts Action, Mecha Action Drama, Industrial-themed Science Fiction – to name the ones that immediately spring to mind. If you give the album a listen and like what you hear, be sure to tell others about it.


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Music Review: My Yellow Microphone by Fresh Body Shop

Year: 2011
Genre: Indie Rock + Gothic Rock + Synthpop + Electropop
Similar Artists: [Earlier material: Nine Inch Nails, The Cure]
Online: BandcampJamendoSoundcloudFacebookTwitterYoutube
Tracks:

  1. Mind Healer
  2. Naked
  3. My Yellow Microphone
  4. Ted
  5. Stop For a While
  6. Burning Keys
  7. Come Get Some
  8. Dusty Tapes
  9. Mind Healer (CIRC Mix)

As a long-time fan of Fresh Body Shop, I decided to review another album this time around. My Yellow Microphone is one of several albums that Pedro released back in 2011. 2011 saw the beginning of a more electronic, disco and funky sound whilst surprisingly managing to keep some of the Gothic Rock edge that led me to become a fan in the first place. The album has a bit of an experimental feel to it, with Pedro trying new things. It worked and I find myself listening to the album on a regular basis.

Do I have any favourite tracks? It is a tie between the title track My Yellow Microphone and the seventh track Come Get Some. These offer a glimpse into the transition to the slightly different style that began that year. These songs are also really fun to listen to and repeatable.

In conclusion, this is a must-listen for folks that love FBS’s music. If you are unfamiliar with Fresh Body Shop but have a love Electropop and Synthpop, then I highly recommend that you give the album a listen over at the hub of your choice. If you like what you hear, be sure to tell others about it.