Having already heard Empathy Test’s new single ‘Monsters’ we were very intrigued to give their new album of the same name a listen this week ahead of its release on 22nd May.
The 10 track album is full of variety from the chilled out rhythm of ‘Making Words’ to the more up-beat ‘Holy Rivers’ this is definitely an album to include in your lockdown playlists.
Not only this, the true to life lyrics resonate very deeply with us in today’s COVID-19 society. ‘Incubation Song’’s talk of containment and imprisonment isn’t too far from how we feel during lockdown and ‘Fear of Disappearing’ speaks of the loneliness of this world dominated by social media, which has perhaps never been so true as it has now. In fact, the whole album includes superb song-writing by the whole band who all contribute to the lyrics of their songs.
With this album, Empathy Test look to cement themselves as one of the most inventive, emotionally affecting and addictive musical experiences around and we believe that this album goes a long way to making this a reality.
Jessica Victoria’s musical background is something to admire.. She holds a doctorate in musical arts from The Catholic University of America, a Master of Music in vocal performance from the New England Conservatory of Music and bachelors’ degrees in music and foreign languages from the University of New Mexico, where she graduated summa cum laude. In addition to a thriving performance career, Victoria directs the voice track of the Sacred Music Program at the Franciscan University of Steubenville.
Not only this, Dr. Jessica Victoria has performed for Pope John Paul II at the Vatican, at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall and with orchestras in the United States, Europe and South America, picking up many awards for her vocal performances along the way.
We are absolutely loving the new album which is a credit to Jessica’s experience and education and also pulls from her celtic ancestral links as well as hints of rock and pop, it is a musical experience for anyone to enjoy this spring. So, get purchasing and be transported by Jessica Victoria’s magical new album.
A romance between story and stunning sound, Jonathan Cilia Faro’s forthcoming album‘From Now On’ offers a collection of elating tracks that consume the listener with true cinematic intensity. With some of the songs previously pitched to the likes of Bocelli and Josh Groban, the comparison of Jonathan to the operatic greats is easily understood after listening to his music.
Taking on careers as a minister, soldier, freemason, busker and restaurateur, Jonathan’s life is an extraordinary account of talent, persistence and bravery – qualities that were most tried during his battle with cancer at the age of 25. Causing him to not only lose his voice, but to lose his passion for music as well, Jonathan’s bout of cancer saw him struggle both mentally and physically as life and death hung in the balance.
Now recovered, Jonathan has returned to what he loves most – music. With his latest project ‘From Now On’, Jonathan provides an album that offers escapism and hope in life’s darkest moments. Dividing his time between London and America as an entertainer, Jonathan combines opera with his own comedic performances and tales of his remarkable life. Having already started to make his mark by performing for the likes of The Pope and Jay Leno, Jonathan is set to broaden the limits of what can be achieved through opera with his album release on April 26th.
Through bridging the traditional sounds of her homeland in Ontario to those of her current home in Limerick, the new EP ‘Throwing Shapes‘ from Emily Jean Flack is perhaps her most accomplished work to date – showcasing her gorgeously pure vocals and the Celtic music she was raised with, whilst injecting cool electronic textures to create a genre-spanning mix that defies expectations and delivers on every level. Produced by Belfast native Peter Wallace, and mixed by three-time Grammy Award winner David Bottrill, ‘Throwing Shapes’ also features guest performances by two Irish folk stars, whistle and flute player Brian Finnegan from the band Flook and guitarist Marty Barry.
“Although I come from a traditional instrumental folk background, I’ve always listened to so many other styles of music. And my own music has always been more personal, more modern and more contemporary. Being in Ireland is wonderful in the sense that it’s so culturally rich, but there is a ferocity and sense of independence within the music. It’s not cute or quaint. It’s quite raw and organic. Ireland has offered me an environment to openly make the music that moves me”
Harnessing an impeccable musical lineage as the daughter of Denise Flack – a member of the groundbreaking Celtic-pop band Leahy, Emily Jean Flack grew up immersed in traditional Irish music and dance. Emily cites her mother as her main influence and inspiration, with her family experiences being what has given her both an undeniable stage presence and an aptitude for performance. Her first public rendition was at an Irish Ceilidh near Peterborough, Ontario where she sang “Katie” by Mary Black, accompanied by her aunt on piano. Despite this being a small performance, this clearly had a profound effect of her maturing musically at an early age, and she had been quoted as saying that this moment felt in some small way that she was following in her mother’s footsteps. Her love of ceilidhs and festivals meant that her eventually uprooting to Ireland was a transition was one that was both effortless and empowering.
Through honing her craft while studying for a Masters in Traditional Music at the University of Limerick, vocalist, songwriter, musician and dancer Emily has spent her life surrounded by music and musicians, but has always harnessed a keenness to express her influences in a way which was entirely her own. Despite the dynamic and joyous feel to her music, there is an inherent degree of heartbreak behind the veil, which emotionally, allows the tracks to feel more wholesome and real. With the spirit of the Emerald Isle permeating her material, Emily also incorporates jazz, pop and Americana influences to create a sound that she describes as progressive folk. Lyrically, the concept of love is explored in all its various forms, with all of her songs coming from a degree of personal experience – Love is hard, love is beautiful, love is worth the fight.
For a true insight into a songwriting mind, check out Matt Boroff’s new video discussing the concepts and ideas that drive his new album, Grand Delusion.
It can take a long time to fully understand what an album is about, and the cryptic nature of Matt’s lyrics would unlikely change this, but his new record is one worth delving into. With a distinctly current agenda, addressing some of the society’s most pressing issues at this time, Grand Delusion challenges our perceptions of how we see the world and pushes us to question it.
Matt’s new record has been put together with the help of Alain Johannes from 11AD studios, Jack Irons (former Chili Peppers and Pearl Jam drummer) and Mark Lanegan. Grand Delusion is out May 5th.
International star on the rise and award nominee set for debut UK single release on July 14th Born in Sri Lanka and now based in Sydney, Australia, Senani is a spiritual songwriter with a growing reputation in the USA, Asia and Australia. Now setting her sights on the UK, she releases her debut single ‘Free’ on July 14th.
A funk laced, rhythmic soul-pop track with nods to Sri Lankan and Indian influences, Senani describes ‘Free’ as ‘a song which liberates the listener and speaks of Freedom. To be who you want to be, unrestricted and filled with abundance as your true self’. The single is taken from the excellent album ‘Infinity’.
Already available in Australia and the US, the song was nominated for a 2013 Hollywood Music in Media award in the RNB/Soul category, and helped catapult Senani into the hot 100 list of unsigned artists/bands of 2013 from reputable U.S. magazine Music Connection.
You can hear the radio edit of the superbly infectious track here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VIdC2UDnvhI
The UK release will also include a remix of the track, a more dance-pop based radio remix from Cliff Randall: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yQXxautfWVc
Senani’s music has aired on national Australian FM radio as well as TV music show Rage and MTV India.
Her growing reputation has already seen her share the same bill as huge Australian acts such as Silver Chair and Margaret Urlich at the Mattara Music Festival in Newcastle, Australia, and her forward momentum looks likely to continue as she surrounds herself with top class talent. Whether writing or performing, the promising songwriter insists on working with experienced session musicians, players and writers to ensure her music remains as strong as possible.
The guitarist in her Sydney band – as well as for all the tracks on the ‘Infinity’ album – is Eric Rasmussen, formerly of Heatwave and now credited with co-writing four of the album tracks. Having worked with the likes of Human Nature, Smokey Robinson and Karen Carpenter, Rasmussen is an indicator of the kind of quality Senani is working with to fulfil her vision.
The guitarist she works with in LA is Michael O’Neil (George Benson) while bassist Hussain Jiffrey won a Grammy Award this year for work with the likes of Whitney Houston, Sergio Mendes and Herb Alpert. Meanwhile, keys player Jim Kirby was a member of the Roy Orbison band until his death in 1988.
Senani’s music is given a glossy, professional sheen by producer Michael Lynch – a former audio engineer For Sony music (1996-2008) who now works for his own company Shoehorse Sound. Having worked with well-known Australian singers including Delta Goodrem, Jimmy Barnes, John Butler Trio and Midnight oil, he has mixed Senani’s songs ‘Free’, ‘Voodoo Girl’, ‘A Special Kind of Girl’, ‘No More’, ‘Just Us’ and ‘I Am a Woman’.
The list of top talent Senani is working with is seemingly endless, with Darryl Beaton (keyboard player with Australian music legends such as Guy Sebastian and Jessica Mauboy) and Nikolas Pringadi (session pianist for Human Nature, Stan Walker, Cindy Lauper, Rick Astley and other International acts while in Australia). It all goes to prove that Senani’s music is drawing the interest of some top names in the music industry.
Senani’s success should come as little surprise, given that her mother was Sri Lanka’s most popular actress in the 1960’s and 70’s, also working off screen as a radio singer. She acted as the main star in over 40 films including Sri Lanka’s first colour movie produced by Science fiction writer Arthur C Clarke (Space Odyssey 2000).
Somewhat more surprising though is the fact that, under the advice of her parents, Senani is also the proud owner of a Medical Degree, following in the footsteps of her Father, a retired Doctor.
With medicine in place as an alternative career should her momentum in the music industry stall, it looks unlikely that her degree will be needed – Senani’s increasing international music profile should see to that.
The ‘Free’ single is released on July 14th.
Now producing music for the UK music industry, Kumar Sanu is making waves with his new album ‘Amor’ out June 2nd! Take a look at the latest promo video for ‘Amor’ here: http://youtu.be/sDwwH1IzwaM
The promo video is an urban feature about his love for women. It has fast beats and crazy camera angles!
Tracks from the album include ‘Tu Ares’ which brings a Caribbean twist to the Indian pop sound and ‘Ek Masoom Ladki’ with a more deep soulful jazz beat to it, accompanied by an upbeat techno edge. The Song ‘wo ho na ho’ is a deep soulful song, sung beautifully by Kumar Sanu in his sweet heart felt soul voice. The song ‘Ashiqui-Ashiqui’ and ‘TERE BIN’ are contemporary number.
Sanu has had previous success with an album in the UK and is now coming back for more. His father Shri Pashupati Bhattacharjee was a prominent classical singer who, after a long career, found his place in Bollywood movies – setting the tone for his son’s career to follow.
Kumar Sanu has now acquired a total of 69 awards over a glittering career including 64 in his native India (from Filmfare, Zee Cine, Kishore Kumarand more) plus 5 internationally (from Sunrise Radio-London, West Indian Academy, Grammy-West Indies, Bollywood Music-U.S.A. and Radio Lotus-South Africa).
The success and undeniable vocal talent has made him one of the highest profile names in Bollywood, an accolade which he has used to give back to willing charities.
The organisations he has helped support include ‘Tsunami Victims Support’, ‘Cancer Research donations’ and ‘school & orphanage development programmes’. Sanu certainly can’t be accused of resting on his laurels. In fact, in 2009, he was awarded the PADMA SHRI award – the 4th largest civilian award it is possible to receive only from the President of India. Also Mumbai, Holland and Zurich hospitals use one of Kumar songs in their treatment of cancer patients!