Category Archives: New Music

Stewart Agnew – Look How The Stars Turn On [NEW MUSIC]

One of Ireland’s most refined singer songwriters, Stewart Agnew, is emerging from his self-imposed musical exile clasping a clutch of AOR masterpieces to his chest in the shape of his third album, Hello Bright Spark (Trick Records), which will be released on 30 September, simultaneously with the single, “Look How The Stars Turn On”.

With initial writing and pre-production sped along by contributions from Lou Natkin and Paul Wilkinson, Stewart headed into the studio in May 2011. Renowned producer Roger Bechirian (The Undertones, Elvis Costello, Bell X1) took control of the console and in a whirlwind of eighteen studio days in the depths of leafy Westmeath the 10 songs that resulted offer slivers of magic and moments of sublime comfort. All of which makes for an album of light, optimism and progression that can’t fail to appeal, both musically and lyrically, to the broadest possible audience.

Agnew has expanded on the palate suggested by his previous albums (Tailor Made and, more recently, Songs From The Gasstation) displaying a pop-nous and songwriting maturity previously only glimpsed at.

In an era of insanely accelerated pop careers burnouts and X-factor pot-celebrity the Hello Bright Spark harks back to an era when craft, time and emotion meant so much more.

Stewart has played live with everyone from Ron Sexsmith (who guested on the last album) and Gemma Hayes to Mick Flannery and Beth Orton, Josh Ritter & Duke Special.

Stewart will be strummin’ it onstage at The Spirit Store, Dundalk with full band in tow – Justin Lawless (electric guitars), Ken Murphy (bass), Anthony Clark (piano, guitar & vocals) & Phil Wilkinson (drums & percussion) on Thursday, 06 October as start of a national tour. Enjoy the single video above and pick up a copy of Hello Bright Spark in all the usual download spots.

keep up to date with all things Agnew @ stewartagnew.com

 

By: Shayne Byrne | Beat-Play Ambassador Ireland | @shaynewithMWL | Music Without Labels & Beat-Play, LLC

 

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Indian School – “The Cruelest Kind” [NEW MUSIC]

I was late to embrace Audio Karate, one of the fieriest bands to come out of the late 90s/early-aughts pop-punk scene.  By the time I was getting into their kind of raw, full-throated, vocals and live, loud, imperfect production, the band was almost broken up.  I had no idea that was the case when I stumbled across “Nintendo 89” on a Warped Tour compilation, and if I had, I would’ve begged them not to.  Listen to this beast:

The first thirty seconds are one of the most epic builds in pop-punk.  The guitar tones are perfect, the drums won’t stop, and when it all drops out to introduce those main power chords – ugh.  There’s more energy in those thirty three seconds than a six-pack of Red Bull.  I can only imagine the reaction it got live.

Anyway, these dudes went their separate ways around ’05 and left the world with two albums, Space Camp, and Lady Melody.  Buy ’em, love ’em, play ’em loud, and then check this out:

They came back!  They have a piano player, mainlined The Strokes and changed their name, but the songwriting and singer Arturo Barrio’s distinct pipes are as solid as ever.  I miss the throat – rupturing rawness of their earlier work, but hey, that’s growth.  Space Camp didn’t have a single instance of saloon style piano playing either, but “Elvis” features it heavily and it works.  It’s a give and take.

Whip-crack opener “Rob Your House” comes closest to capturing the groups free-wheeling energy of old, with the titular phrase serving as an anarchic refrain that’s gonna feel good to shout out with a group of drunken buddies at a show or before a night of debauchery.  At the same time, it also sounds the most “Strokes”y, complete with synths and – unless I’m crazy – a hint of a vocal effect.

The middle pair of tracks, “High Low” and “Wind You Up” form the backbone of the new sound: slower tempos, catchy choruses, and the addition of some acoustic strumming and clean piano sounds.  EP closer “Elvis” is the track that sounds the least likely to work on paper, but is executed with aplomb.  The aforementioned saloon piano kicks in early in the track and is mixed low, but shines in the chorus.

Over the course of the four tracks, the moment I keep going back to, the one that draws the line in the sand is two and a half minutes into “Wind You Up.”  Like the opening of “Nintendo 89” it’s another beat where everything drops away, but instead leaving space for the hell-raising guitar from that track, it’s just Art’s vulnerable croon and a piano.  Does it make me want to pogo my way into a pit  Not really, but it makes me damn excited for what Indian School does next.

UPDATE: Thanks to Eric and Lucy for pointing out I overlooked a fifth track that can be found here: http://soundcloud.com/indianschool/tracks  Enjoy!

Chris Cullari | Beat-Play Ambassador Los Angeles |@Chris_Cullari | Music Without Labels & Beat-Play, LLC |

Evan P. Donohue with “Rhythm & Amplitude” at The End in Nashville, TN [SHOW/NEW MUSIC]

I keep finding myself at punk rock shows in Nashville, but that’s not a bad thing.  Nashville’s punk scene has grown tremendously over the last four to five years and is now thriving.  This particular show at The End was packed with a younger crowd ready to rock, and I don’t think the bartender sold less than a hundred PBRs… per hour.  With a lineup of underground Nashville bands Watusi, Spanish Candles, Evan P. Donohue, and Diarrhea Planet, this show was set up to be a wild night.  All the bands that night put on killer shows, but I was particularly interested in hearing music from Evan P. Donohue and his band.

Evan P. Donohue is a local independent Nashville songwriter and artist who has set himself apart from the typical rock bands in Music City.  He writes intelligently through stories about semi-fictional characters and experiences from his life.  With his drummer Mike Kavouras, Donohue arranges and develops music that that creatively supports and nourishes the lyrics and stories in his songs.  There aren’t too many young indie rock bands with this combination of musical excellence and purpose behind clever ideas and words.  Evan P. Donohue continues to push his music to new heights, and released a full-length debut album last year called Rhythm & Amplitute to do just that.  Check out one of my favorite songs from the album, “O Justice!”

The entire album cannot be confined to just one specific genre because I find a complex combination of feels in the music that associate with past and contemporary rock, pop, surf-rock, and Americana artists.  This rings true, since some of Donohue’s influences are T.Rex, Elvis Costello, Of Montreal, Beach Boys, Tom Waits, and David Rawlings.  Rhythm & Amplitude plays with a variety of musical styles, and the songs are a collection of reality-turned fiction stories that blend while maintaining truth as their foundation.  Evan P. Donohue’s bio states, “Masterfully crafting sardonic portraits of decidedly earnest characters, Evan P. Donohue poetically chooses his words to express the struggles and affections his often tragic characters experience by the choices they’ve faced in life. The surf-rock ballad “California Sunshine” speaks of a middle-aged man who rebels against the monotony of his life, eventually finding peace and happiness “sleeping under Starlight”, a prostitute employed at the Mexican brothel where the track gets its title.”  I really couldn’t have said it better myself!  Check out some more music from Evan P. Donohue’s Rhythm & Amplitude:

Whether it’s taking old stories and making them new or creating new truths with current realities, Donohue has something undeniably great.  His music tells tales, embraces ideas, and develops new songs that go far beyond today’s pop hits.  Nashville seems like an excellent fit for this up-and-coming artist who is set to debut more recordings this fall.  On November 11, 2011, Evan P. Donohue will be releasing a 7-inch called Jazzputin.  The record will contain two new songs that I, and every single one of his fans are very excited about.  Listen to more music, stay up to date with Evan P. Donohue, and buy an Rhythm & Amplitude!

By Steve Harpine | Nashville Ambassador | @Steve_MWL | Beat-Play & Music Without Labels, LLC

Kendrick Lamar Live at Porter’s Pub in San Diego, CA [PHOTOS]

Kendrick Lamar Live at Porter’s Pub in San Diego, CA

Kendrick Lamar– “HiiiPower” (available for FREE DOWNLOAD via Dopehood)

Click the pic for more Kendrick Lamar concert shots!

Check out Kendrick Lamar for news on this rising hip-hop star!

Follow him @Kendrick_Lamar

Photography By: Shane Suski |Ambassador of Photography | San Diego, CA| @shanewithmwl | Beat-Play and Music Without Labels, LLC

Dot The One – Above Ground Level – First Single [New Release]

Dot The One, the most under-rated and over-talented Philly rapper probably of all time, has just released the first single off his newest project, AGL (Above Ground Level), a mixtape due to be out on 11/11/11. Dot has been working on this project for over a year now.  The single is called “Salute Me” – Just take a listen:

Dot, otherwise known as Brandon Cromwell, has been hustling crazy hard over this last year. In addition to working on AGL, he’s also been doing live shows, shooting music videos, and he even pulled a stunt called 30 Day Reign where he released a new free song every day for 30 days on his Facebook page. This dude is a beast!

AGL Promo Vid:

That video reminds me of an older song from Dot The One called “Say Hi” – This track is beyond classic:

Whether he’s writing or just freestyling, Dot The One has earned his name. His style is completely unique, and his complex and carefully crafted flow spills out so smoothly he makes it look too easy. This kid has a jewel.

Recent interview w/ Dot on inspiration:

Check out this Dot The ONE Playlist on Beat-Play. Just listen to the first track and you will be hooked. His producers are disgusting, his collaborators are nasty, and Dots not afraid to just spit straight for 5 minutes right through the hooks.

This kid brings a breath of fresh air to any hip hop fan who has been hurting lately. Finally, somebody you can get down with. That playlist tells the whole story, at least until AGL comes out in November. Judging from Salute Me, I have the feeling that this mixtape is going to take Dot’s greatness to a whole nother level. This is going to be the best mixtape of the year. <period. You heard it here first.


Check him out
!

Written by: Dante Carmelo Cullari

Black Resume Live at Porter’s Pub in San Diego, CA [PHOTOS]

Black Resume Live at Porter’s Pub in San Diego, CA

Click the pic for more concert shots!!

Check out BLACK RESUME

Photography By: Shane Suski |Ambassador of Photography | San Diego, CA| @shanewithmwl | Beat-Play and Music Without Labels, LLC

Spells debut “Escapist” album at Musicians Corner in Nashville, TN [SHOW/NEW MUSIC]

It’s another Saturday in Nashville and if you’re the least bit interested in new music from Nashville, you have to be at Centennial Park for another round of bands at Musicians Corner.  There were a number of great artists that performed this week including a new electronic indie rock group called SPELLS.  Led by Trevor James Tillery, SPELLS made their debut performance at Musicians Corner, and gave themselves a great start to a promising season of promoting their new music.  That’s right, they also have a really impressive debut album called Escapist.

SPELLS independently released Escapist on July 15, 2011.  The album travels back and forth between serene melodies and big dirty electronic grooves.  Songs like “Escapist” and “Where Have You Been” really drive the album with dominating hooks and big Muse-like bass lines, while songs like “City on a Hill” reproduce a somber feel with ambient sweeps that seem to support lyrics about a broken world.  Overall, this is a really cool album that contains some very intelligent music.  Both the musicianship and songwriting replicate a great sound and fresh feel.  For example, “Transient” carries a tight groove in an ambient song about the mystery of life.  I feel the need to say, Jake Goss, I love the entrance with the crash on two after the rolls.  It puts a perfect touch on top of those phrases.  Enough of me talking about the music, take a listen to some killer new tracks from SPELLS:

Throughout Escapist, SPELLS “writes about a yearning for something beyond the modern world. He’s rebelling against the technology-saturated realm that adds layer upon layer of complication to life, causing dreams to become a small glimmer in the back of people’s minds as they chase the material.”  (Next Big Nashville).  Tillery has something important to say, and he’s saying it through his carefully-crafted melodic electro-pop.  “These are the kind of songs I write,” he reveals. “These are the things that I’m constantly thinking about and haunted by. And music is an outlet where I can get that out – an outlet to hopefully get other people thinking and start knocking down walls.”

Escapist was produced by Josh Niles and featured Trevor Tillery (vocals, guitars, keys), Brian McSweeney (vocal percussion, backing vocals), Jake Goss (drums), and Adrian Walther (bass).  After working on the record for the last year, it released this summer and has been getting a lot of local attention in Nashville.  SPELLS played at 12th & Porter on thursday night as part of Next Big Nashville’s Soundland Festival, which took place this week.  This is a band that you need to know about.  Keep listening and supporting SPELLS because they’ve really got something here.  Check them out online at spellsofficial.com.

By Steve Harpine | Nashville Ambassador | @Steve_MWL | Beat-Play, Music Without Labels, LLC

Graffiti6 Live at House of Blues in San Diego, CA [PHOTOS]

Graffiti6 Live at House of Blues in San Diego, CA

Graffiti6– “Annie You Save Me (Dr. Rosen Rosen Remix)” Available for free download through graffiti6.com

Click the pic for more Graffiti6 concert shots!

Check Graffiti6 out!!!

Photography By: Shane Suski |Ambassador of Photography | San Diego, CA| @shanewithmwl | Beat-Play and Music Without Labels, LLC

Strive Roots Opens for War – Downtown San Diego

This Friday, Sept, 23rd, the incredibly talented band Strive Roots is opening up for classic funk band War. If you’ve never heard of Strive Roots, let this video recorded by MusicWithoutLabels at last year’s THC Music Fest, give you your first taste. Eli (lead guitar) does something with the guitar I’ve never seen ANYONE ever do. I still can’t figure out how he does it. Check it out:

With tunes like that, and one of my favorites, Communicate:along with a whole slur of new material, this show is going to be ridiculous! If you’re in Southern Cali, and you like to dance and jam the f*k out, you’re definitely going to want to catch this. Tickets are on sale here, or you can email Eli directly at eli@striveroots.com, and maybe he’ll hook you up!

Strive Roots also plays tonight at the Roxy Theatre in Hollywood at 11:30 pm. If you don’t happen to be in town, you can check out all that Strive Roots has to offer at striveroots.com or on Facebook. This band is seriously going to blow up soon, unquestioned. Don’t miss em!

Written by: Dante Cullari

Ape Tit Live at Cervantes’ Other Side, Denver, CO [Photos]

Ape Tit Live at Cervantes’ Other Side, Denver, CO

Jimmy Iles Beat-Play Ape Tit

Click The Pic for More Concert Shots!!!!

Check Out Ape Tit!!!!

Ape Tit is currently in the studio working on getting their fans some kick ass music to groove too. I myself have seen the guys live twice and I can’t wait to get my hands on some of their deep grooves and phat beats! For now here is a little taste of what you can expect from Ape Tit!

The Audio and Visual Quality is not the best but I promise you when they get their first quality track laid down, I will be posting it without a doubt for you all to check out!!!

Photography By: Jimmy Iles | Director of Artist Relations | @JimmyMWL | Beat-Play & Music Without Labels, LLC