Flavia – Hateful (Single)

Originally posted on Alternative Airwaves

This past Friday June 1, electronic pop artist FLAVIA released a new single called "Hateful".  Prior to this track, I had never heard of Flavia, so I'll let the press release do some talking:
FLAVIA is an electronic pop artist based in Los Angeles, CA. She mixes dark pop and futuristic R&B, exploring the borderland of yesterday’s soul and tomorrow’s electronica. She started to write music at a young age in Ireland and Italy, where she spent her formative years. Having moved often growing up, she feels the closest thing to home-base in her music. “It’s a part of me,” she says. “I couldn’t escape it event if I wanted to.”
In listening to "Hateful", I definitely caught wind of all of these influences in her music.  Oddly enough I also got a bit of a "Lorde" vibe in her music, which is not at all a bad thing. Here's some info about the new track:
Sharing a powerful message for kindness, strength, and human condition, Hateful was inspired by FLAVIA’s own real-life experiences. Reflecting on such experiences opened the way for the larger issues of animosity, division, and bullying in our society today. With the release of her debut single, FLAVIA hopes to reach out to victims of hatred and bullying, and to remind people to treat others with love and respect.
I can get behind that sentiment.  I think that a lot of people share her views toward bullying (online bullying especially) so hearing art related to that is welcome.  It helps take the power away from the people who would direct their hatred toward us. As for listening the track itself, you can find it on Spotify!  Check out Flavia's website at http://www.flavia.la, and be sure to check out her YouTube channel as well!  It opens up with the track "No Gravity" and it's super cool.

Anela & The Early Hours – Yesteryear

Originally posted on Alternative Airwaves

I received this email submission back in June 2017; so right off the bat, a slap on the hand to me for not getting to the review until now, nearly a year later. Yesteryear by Anela & The Early Hours Anela & The Early Hours is an indie pop group out of London, Ontario.  Yesteryear is their debut album; here are some of my thoughts about it. Right off the top, I have to be honest and say that this album did not "wow" me.  I feel that it is a solid, well-produced album, but it doesn't stand out as something special to me.  That said, I would still recommend giving this album a listen. Like I said, it sounds well-produced.  It's "radio ready", in the sense that it sounds good over my speakers and headphones - the sound isn't too flat or anything like that.  Guitar work in the 7 tracks is delicate but has a presence, and the drums have a certain "pop" to it.  I like lead singer Anela Navarro's voice, though it doesn't fluctuate through very much range (however it sounds like she potentially has a wide vocal range in her if she chose to use it). Singles from the album include "Space" and "All Alone", for which there are some YouTube videos you can watch: here and here.  The stand-out track for me though was "Stuck With You" - I liked that one the best. Overall, "Yesteryear" is a good album and I recommend it.  3/5.  You can purchase it from iTunes, or stream it on Spotify/Soundcloud/Bandcamp (link above).

Radio Free Burrito Mixtape: If This Be Sin

Originally posted on Alternative Airwaves

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10 Waves Of You – Sail

Originally posted on Alternative Airwaves

Sometimes I go down a very strange rabbit hole on Jamendo.  The other day on the radio, I heard some jazz in the background and decided that I wanted to listen to some jazz while I worked.  Instead, I did some clicking around to see what was new and found this 4-track instrumental EP from a musician called 10 Waves Of You, "Sail". First, a little about 10 Waves Of You; here's their bio as written on Jamendo:
10 Waves of You is an Italian Ambient Post Rock one man band from Milan (Italy) formed in 2014. Luca Crivellaro plays guitar, bass, voice, keys, piano, synths and percussion. I'm am a free diver (not scuba diver!) When i make music i search for the same emotions that I feel when I free dive in the underground water: alone, curious, numb, trying to reach every possible positive vibes from the underwater creatures and hidden world. I hope my music will make you think, feel and imagine…
So, some interesting notes there.  I really like what Crivellaro has put together with this little EP.  The title track, Sail, was my favourite by far.  Stay with me on this point: I enjoyed the Twilight films, and thought the best part of them was Carter Burwell's scores (Amazon: Twilight [The Score], The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 2 The Score Music by Carter Burwell).  The piano work is fantastic, and that's the vibe I got from Sail and the other 4 tracks on the album.  I found the album as a whole calming and relaxing, and listened while I got my work done. On the slightly negative side, the album is too short for me.  At 4 tracks, I had to move onto something different pretty quickly.  Also, some of the tracks edged too close to the "elevator / hold music" category, which was a little off-putting. Overall I recommend it, especially "Sail".  You can find the album on Jamendo here: https://www.jamendo.com/album/158044/sail

Jamendo’s Current Best Of All Genres

Originally posted on Alternative Airwaves

There are some pretty solid tracks on Jamendo's "Best Of All Genres" list when you head over to the main page.  Here are some highlights for me:

Pure Mids - These Days - A nice, light pop-rock tune.  I could definitely find a place for this group in my rotation of music.  Pure Mids are an American group.

Always the Alibi - After All I've Done
Always the Alibi - Ain't Another Girl

Two-for-one deal here with Always the Alibi, providing some solid rock for your Friday morning.  Another American group, from the Dallas-Fort Worth area.  Wonder if they know Chip and Joanna from Fixer Upper?

Jekk - Strong - Smooth soul.  Jekk is a French artist and has been making music since 2014. 

OnClassical - E. Satie - Trois Gnossiennes - I. Lent - Alessandro Simonetto - OnClassical is a great Italian collective on Jamendo.  They release some well-produced classical music.  It's really relaxing and helps get work done.

Tony Petersen - James Alley Blues - The song title says "blues", but it's pure folk.




Recommendation: Daniel Robinson – Little Birds

Originally posted on Alternative Airwaves

Just thought I'd throw out a quick recommendation!  I found this on Jamendo the other day, and thought it was a great folk/pop album.  Some of the tracks are a little dreamy, which is great.  I didn't like Those Were The Days too much; Nowhere to Hide and Little Birds were definitely standout tracks for me. 

I was listening to The Decemberists' new album before dropping into this one, and the transition worked well for me.  If you have some time, take a listen to Daniel Robinson's Little Birds.

https://www.jamendo.com/album/175519/little-birds

Mini Podcast Review: Double Consciousness

Originally posted on Alternative Airwaves

It's been far too long since I've posted anything - will be honest, I've been devoting attention to my personal blog and have been neglecting this one; partially the reason behind that is because I'm not as comfortable writing about music (strange as that seems) as other topics.

I promised in my last podcast and a few tweets that I would review the new podcast from Toussaint Morrison called Double Consciousness.

I will be up front - this podcast is not for me.  I thought that because I love what Toussaint brings to the table musically, that adding his podcast to my subscription list would be fun.  I appreciate the content and discussion topics that he and podcast partner Joetta talk about, but I found the episodes to be a bit too long for my personal preference.

That said, this isn't a podcast I would completely abandon.  I think that they have the makings of a great show, discussing important topics (and some not-so-important topics sometimes) from their perspective.  And to clarify, they're talking about issues from a black person's perspective, which is still relevant today despite any social progression we've made around the world. 

I think one of the other reasons the podcast doesn't resonate with me fully is that I am a white male so it goes without saying that I can't fully relate to their discussions. 

However I still recommend giving it a listen and see if it's up your alley.  It's available on iTunes and most other podcast platforms.

#111 – Jamendo’s Best of December 2017 Playlist

Originally posted on Alternative Airwaves

New episode to start your day. The tracks in this episode are almost exclusively from Jamendo's Best of December 2017 Playlist. Recorded a bit differently this time - you'll have to use the playlist below to follow along as the songs and artists aren't introduced in the traditional way. Enjoy!

Podcasts mentioned in the episode:

The DLX – Two Kids

Originally posted on Alternative Airwaves

How about some nice smooth pop to start the year off right?  The DLX is the product of singer-songwriter Shawn Chambliss of Hattiesburg, Mississippi, US. 

Available on Jamendo is just a single, "Two Kids".  It's a smooth well-produced pop track that has a nice pace to it.  It feels like some of the more popular ballads you'll hear on the radio today, but different. 

Hopefully he will have more to come in 2018!

A Creative Commons Christmas – Day Three

Originally posted on Alternative Airwaves

Ho Ho Ho!  Another round of Creative Commons Christmas music.  I've been a bit busy with work (who knew the Christmas season would be so busy?), but luckily I had this saved for a rainy (or snowy) day.

https://www.jamendo.com/album/170343/my-favorite-christmas-guitar-songs

This album is full of guitar instrumentals of Christmas songs.  If you're looking for some non-vocal music to fill the air, this is a good place to start!

Happy holidays!