Tag Archives: album review

Branden Sipes – That Side of Me [Album Review]

There is something about Branden Sipes’ music that is purely authentic and that genuineness cogently manifests in his latest released album, That Side of Me. The talented, Colorado troubadour engages his listeners with a refined, baroque guitar style, accompanied by his soft, affectionate vocals. Quite interestingly, That Side of Me takes us on an acoustic journey, encountering the usual suspects of love and life while challenging us to confront said topics in respect to our own life experiences.

The journey begins brightly upbeat in the form of “Everything’s Right,” an inspiring track that sets the tone for the album while introducing to the audience Sipes’ delicate, yet intricate guitar work, which resonates throughout the album. The title track, “That Side of Me,” (which we featured in March) follows suit delivering catchy guitar riffs and honest melodies.

The journey, then, takes a turn after the opening two numbers, presenting a dark moment in our quest. Similarly to classic literature, the protagonist must fall, or metaphorically die, before rebirth can occur. “Winter’s On its Way,” a soulful ballad, uses clever lyrics conjoined with beautiful musical composition to invoke feelings of desolation and regret; the feeling of fleeting love. However, within this moment of despair and emptiness, reflection emerges in the form of “Searching,” a selection revelatory of the artist’s acceptance of the growth process: “’Cause I am a searching for the reason, for the beating of my heart / and I am finding out the answer, is a long way from the start.”

In “Standing as I am,” we experience a rebirth, a declaration of awareness, and, while incognizant of what future may hold, a fervent renewal of passion for life and love. This rebirth is evident in the lines “When the evening is over and the stars are shining through / I just want to be with you” and “Walk with me into this morning / There’s more of you I’m wanting…to see.” Sipes creatively uses these allusions to bring his audience to a place of enlightenment. “Take Me Over” is a beautiful song which speaks to the yearning for the kind of love that completes us. The bright, poppy guitar licks in the verses lull the listener into a false sense of security before the hook and chorus create a truly captivating moment.

Branden delivers a truly remarkable composition which has thoroughly impressed our staff as well as our readers. That Side of Me plays like a classic novel, taking us the through dynamics of the protagonist’s plight, from trial and tribulation to rebirth and enlightenment. If That Side of Me is any indicator of what is to come from Branden in the future, we are all in for a treat. Keep an eye out for this talented troubadour.

Kyle C. Stilley | Marketing Strategist | @stillz | Music Without Labels & Beat-Play, LLC | kyle@musicwithoutlabels.com

The_Weeknd – “House of Balloons” [ALBUM]

So people are always talking about what’s hot right now in the R&B and soul game and honestly haven’t had too many people I’m proud to just spurt out like The_Weeknd. After playing his first album, about 21 times, it was definitely time to spread the love for this Toronto based independent artist and SHARE SHARE SHARE!!!

House Of Balloons has that old school soul vibe that everyone was bumpin’ during the 90s like it was going out of style. The only difference here is the incredible use of modern technology to perfect this sensational recording quality. It’s that new old soul! The best part is one I’ve been saving for the end of this post and that is to inform everyone that you can just simply Click Here for a FREE Download of the entire album.

the weeknd

One other thing that’s totally worth noting about this group. This is their first album and you can find it EVERYWHERE!!! Gotta give credit where credit is due, and these cats threw down a legit online marketing campaign for this album and definitely set up real nice to drop anything further with large following on all networks. Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Youtube, and Soundcloud.

By: Mark G. Valente | Online Marketing Director | @MarkwithMWL | Music Without Labels & Beat-Play, LLC

Rhyne McCormick – Live at The Cap Theatre [Album Review]

Rhyne McCormick is a strong believer in music and that its healing power could save one’s soul.  He is constantly proving that statement with each song on Live at The Cap Theatre. McCormick, a blend of folk, country, and the blues, hails from the great state of Pennsylvania.  Armed with simply an acoustic guitar, McCormick brings his musicianship alive with powerful vocals and catchy guitar riffs.

Being a solo artist, it is truly amazing how much musical presence he brings with just his voice and guitar.  McCormick is an extremely talented guitar player and even a better vocalist and song writer.  If you are in PA and have a chance to catch Rhyne out on the road, I promise you will not be disappointed.  If not, you’ll have to wait til he continues his musical journey to a music venue near you but either way, Live at The Cap Theatre will definitely keep you entertained until the time comes..

**Check Out Rhyne McCormick HERE for music, photos, & tour dates**

Ossie Dellimore – Reggae Music [Album Review & Video]

The title of the album says it all.  Reggae Music, the sophomore album from Ossie Dellimore is 60 minutes of pure reggae at its finest.  Dellimore is a master of his craft and obviously has reggae music running through his veins.  The way he takes traditional Roots Reggae and projects meaningful lyrics on top of his music is truly unique.  Each song is another story as Ossie brilliantly flows from track to track leaving listeners educated about Roots Reggae and Dellimore’s personal journey through music.

To prove how much Ossie Dellimore loves his music and the words behind it, he donates a piece of each album sale to Doctors Without Borders, an organization providing relief to people whose survival is threatened by violence, neglect, or catastrophe.

Check Out “The Secret to Success”, the first track off of “Reggae Music” by Ossie Dellimore:

For any of you who love reggae, there is absolutely no reason that Ossie Dellimore should not be in your music library.  With fantastic lyrics blended through smooth reggae beats, you can not go wrong when listening to “Reggae Music.”  You can buy the album here or preview on Myspace


Vinny Vegas – Band Review + New Vinyl Release!

Vinny Vegas is an amazing rock band out of Baltimore, MD.

The band consists of:

Justin Fogelman – Guitar and Vocals
Scott Siskind – Guitar and Vocals
Emmanuel Lee – Keys
Ian McDonald – Bass
Jason Cohen – Drums

Vinny Vegas has been around since about 2004. Their last EP Land of Giants had some of my favorite tracks from 2009 on it like Watch out for Mastodons and Four Rabbits (Listen Here). Now they’ve just released a 7” Vinyl recording with 2 brand new tracks. Here’s a sneak peak of one of them:

Vinny Vegas – “Ogre Hands”

Vinny Vegas fcking DESTROYS it! These guys should really be famous right now. If you like indie rock, you’re going to fall in love with this band. There’s not much else I can say about them, other than buy their new vinyl!

Listen to Vinny Vegas Free Here

And cop the new vinyl HERE

Reviewed by: Dante Cullari Founder & CEO Beat-Play, LLC


Lust Murder bOX – Band Review

Lust Murder bOX is a Goth/Electronica/Industrial band out of Austin, TX made up of Erik, Nox, Travis and Vaughn.

Lust Murder bOX – “Genesis”

I’ve got to say, I’m not a Goth Music enthusiast. I do love good music however, and these guys have it. You really get the sense that their music represents something more than just something to listen to. Their lyrical content is opinionated a raw. They’re not afraid to tell the truth.

I really like how they switch between male and female vocals throughout their music too. In terms of musical arrangement, these guys seem to have their sound down perfectly, and the experimentation in their music is refreshing. All in all, especially if you’re a fan of darker rock music, Lust Murder bOX’s new album The New Divine is a great pick up.

You can now listen to The New Divine in it’s entirety on Lust Murder bOX’s Facebook page (along the left side).  If you like it, show some love. These guys rock.

Reviewed by: Dante Cullari Founder & CEO Beat-Play, LLC


Stuedabakerbrown – “Stranger’s We’ll Become” [ALBUM REVIEW]

Let’s get right into this amazing compilation of tracks from the album “Stranger’s We’ll Become.” These guys are going to make alternative rock fun again! They have the mainstream sound and tone without the garbage lyrics presented by bands like Nickelback and Puddle of Mudd. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, These guys are professionals, and definitely have the skill and creativity to make an everlasting impression on the rock world in the near future.


Pete Marotta: Lead Vocals
Eric Sosler: Bass
Michael Esserman: Guitar
Steve Kondracki: Guitar



This latest album starts off with a bang, and easily my favorite song entitled, “Boy and Arrow” bringing flawlessly transitioned vocals to a funky back-beat on drums. It had been mentioned in the past by OutsiderVocals, in regards to their last EP Closer, that most of the songs sounded the same. With that being said I would have to say they completely turned that around, delivering a recognizable dedication to each individual tracks’ uniqueness. Also check out their awesome music videos here.

“Boy And Arrow”

“Crash of Waves”


On Facebook

On Myspace

On Twitter

On YouTube

Reviewed By: Mark G. Valente | Online Marketing Director | @MarkwithMWL | Music Without Labels & Beat-Play, LLC


Now this is rock! “Survival In No Mans Land” is definitely one of the best indie rock albums I’ve heard in quite sometime. They have such a unique style that set them apart from the rest similar to Incubus’ creativity which brought them huge success. They have that great indie rock feel while adding the modern, spacey, and electro tones to compliment their strong original sound.Here is the band:

The tempo of their music feels extremely happy, while optimistically speaking of the many sorrows encountered from love in the past. Their hit “Night Is On Fire” is an awesome song getting alot of feedback from fans throughout the internet. The vocals and overall musical structure of “So Much” is an instant hit, making you fall in love with ME MY HEAD right away. Visit iTunes to purchase here. Having been released in November of 2009, be on the lookout for their newest work, I’m sure we won’t be let down.

“Night Is On Fire”

“So Much”

Dammit! – Free EP Confused – Review

Dammit! – “State of My Nation”

Dammit! is an amazing small town band straight out of India.

“Six-piece Karnataka alt/grunge/punk band Dammit recently released their debut EP Confused. The overt national consciousness/paranoia/rebellion of the band bleeds into their EP and their album art.”  –NH7

The band consists of:

Anup Cowkur-Vocals
Rijusatvik-Lead guitar
Varun Sharma-Rhythm guitar
Rohit Nikam-Bass
Sidhesh Iyer-Keyboards
Nachiket kalburgi-Drums

The EP has only 3 tracks, but they are extremely well recorded and put together, and if I didn’t know better, I’d never be able to tell this band was from India.

All of these guys are great musicians, and they seem to mesh really well together. Anup’s English is perfect, and his voice compliments their groove perfectly as well. As far as punk bands go, these guys kick ass! Their lyrics and song concepts are full of purpose and they’ll also just rock the fck out.

The EP can be downloaded for free on the band’s Facebook page. It’s definitely worth a listen. These guys are awesome!

Reviewed by: Dante Cullari  Founer & CEO Beat-Play, LLC

Album Review: Josh Heinrichs and Friends – Reggae – A+

Josh Heinrichs ft. Cas Haley – “Pressure Drop”

Josh Heinrichs is a Reggae sensation out of Springfield, Missouri. Formerly lead singer of the band Jah Roots, Josh has just released a new solo album titled Josh Heinrich and Friends.

I was lucky enough to get my hands on a copy and I’ve got to tell you, this is one of the best reggae albums I’ve heard all year, and I’ve heard quite a few.

The music is laid back and will almost magically make you feel good the second you put it on..all of it! The skill on guitar is also a perfect additon. Josh’s voice carries the music to new heights however. You’ve got to hear him to know what I mean. His lyrics and style are full of soul, and it is felt.

Josh Heinrichs and Friends features a number of other artists such as Cas Haley, Katchafire, The Green, Clear Conscience, Aston “Familyman” Barrett of Bob Marley and the Wailers and more! The album has debuted at #5 on iTunes Top Selling 200 Reggae Albums and has not left the Top 200 since its release.

In short, if you digg great vibes and great music, this album is a perfect pick that won’t disappoint. I HIGHLY recommend it. A+

Check it out Here for Free: BandCamp

And if you like it, show some love on iTunes

Reviewed by: Dante Cullari Founder & CEO Beat-Play, LLC