Myles Bullen - Wake Up Century (out this week)
Cover art by Anna Welch.
I came up with “Hippie Hop” a while back to describe all that is Myles Bullen. He’s a peaceful lad roaming around with a heart full of love spitting positive and encouraging rhymes to anyone who will stop and listen. I predict more people will listen to his latest record recorded with producer/vocalist, Earth Person. Even with one full length, some previous singles and EP’s under his belt; Bullen seems to really have it together this time for a proper introduction to a bigger audience. The title track and video for it are the gateway, Want more? You couldn’t dodge him if you wanted to. He’s all over this town like a parking meter maid. Between nights at Flask, WMPG, “Rap Night” at Aura, The Telling Room, Congress Street or a backyard open mic party down the street from you; Myles Bullen is out there in the world spreading positivity and can’t be stopped. And that's a good thing for the world.
BeautifulWeird - Retrospect (out now, proper release soon)
Photo By J Roberts.
This is a band still way under the radar and for obvious reasons; they haven’t fully released their debut EP yet nor have they played in town. I have the debut release though and I have seen them play and they are going to be a super good thing. I was impressed upon a first listen a few months ago. Maybe think of a shy Paramore or a more mainstream Weakened Friends possibly. It’s alternative pop rock fronted by a confident and cool vocalist, Kelly Huston. The band also includes two former members of local metal band, Absence of the Sun. Trading in death growls and ripping shreds for sweet licks with some echo on them and an 80s influenced feel; BeautifulWeird won’t be under the radar for much longer.
An Overnight Low - Waverley (June 30)
Waverley is the third and final release in the British travel trilogy inspired by band member Chad Walls’s time in England while studying in Manchester. The three albums, named after train stations he frequented — Euston, Piccadilly and now Waverley — wrap up the package with more clever songs that will please anyone who loved that amazing college rock we got from the later '80s into the early '90s (REM, The Posies, Blur). Fans of Big Star, The Kinks and the Beatles will find a warm place here as well. Mature, yet carefully playful and cheeky Brit-inspired pop rock is my best way to describe An Overnight Low for those who haven’t visited either train stop yet. Get on board this time around though if you have the taste for their flavor. Next stop, happiness.
Sygnal To Noise - Horns High (July 1)
Certainly the most masked band around, Sygnal To Noise returns with their 3rd release in just about five years. Fronted by long-running vocalist Mark Cooper (David’s Playground, Boomslang, Hours Past), Sygnal To Noise release another collection for the rock fans who still save room to put Godsmack, Shinedown, Papa Roach and Stone Sour CDs in their racks. Coop still remains one of local hard rock’s strongest singers. His son Austin, unfortunately, had to give up his seat behind the drums due to personal reasons, but his replacement will do I suppose. Enter the one and only Sonny Robinson of local rock godfathers, Twisted Roots. Not a bad pick up. Coop and Sonny make for a heck of a rock battery.
Jeremiah Freed - Companion Pt. 1 (July 11)
I doubt anyone saw this coming. Why would you?! These 70s rock influenced cats from York took the local music scene by storm and stormed onto Universal Republic Records in the early 00s. After a brief run due to the typical lack of artist development from record labels, Freed freed up and tried a couple of final moves. Most went to LA for a run at it, but would eventually go their own ways. One to Nashville, some stayed around here playing music some stayed out West. Years passed. People change. Vows exchanged and hopes and dreams are altered. The music never goes away though, does it? That's what’s happened here. The original line up, sans drummer Kerry Ryan, is about to serve up their most mature and rich collection yet. Fifteen years after their major label deal was signed and lost, Jeremiah Freed does it all for the right reasons like back when they started and were unable to buy beer. They’re doing it now because there is great music still in them that needs to be released and given to the world.
Kris Rodgers and the Dirty Gems - Losing the Frequency (July 28)
Rodgers is back with another blast of piano/pop rock that can’t be confused for anyone else around. Rodgers music is always gutsy and pushy as it is soulful and thoughtful. He also remains one of the strongest singers around in my book. His growth in this scene has not gone overlooked. This album, his third proper release takes a chance or two. Check out the album closer, “Who’s Gonna Save You Now”. It’s an epic, pop-rock gem that makes you realize Rodgers has become much more than just a piano man.