Raised in NoHo, David Mariam moved to England during his high school years. His passion for music developed after purchasing a Jason Mraz cd at the age of eleven. His music range includes everything from Folk to Drum & Bass. Some of his favourite artists include King Blues, Incubus, Funeral for a Friend, Tyler the Creator and Shwayze.
Follow him on twitter @davidmariam
Having been around for more than a decade Coldplay have become one of the most successful bands on the planet, in that time they have released four astonishing albums that have set the bench mark for British alternative rock.
After spending nearly two decades in Oasis it is hard to imagine Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds debut album ‘Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds’ sounding any different to Oasis or being anywhere near as good. To my pleasant surprise it was. The record contains ten short sweet tracks of that classic Brit-Pop sound, which pushed Noel into the superstar fame, with a modern touch to it.
Whilst being recorded, it was said that some of the songs on the album had the potential to be as big as Oasis’ big hits. After listening to tracks such as ‘Stop All The Clocks’ which is one of the strongest tracks on the album it is easy to see why this statement had been made; it has the potential, with the right exposure, to be as big of a hit as ‘Wonderwall’ was. The record itself still has a very strong sounding resemblance to Oasis, there is something about it however that makes it it’s own, separate from Noel’s past projects. It is full of catchy riffs, memorable lyrics and good composure that makes up good music.
The key element to the CD is the range of instruments used during the songs, there is this constant build up during the verses which leads to this sort of explosion on the chorus making them very powerful and easy to remember. The main negative unfortunately, which is probably the biggest negative in todays music in general is the length of the album, it does feel slightly too short, and it leaves you wanting to hear more.
If you are a fan of Oasis or any Brit-Pop than I would recommend you give this album a listen. It is also a CD to have in your music collection as this is the first release Noel has made since his departure from one of the biggest bands on the planet, Oasis.
Ben Howard was once referred to as so unique that he will make you feel like he is the original troubadour. Whilst that may be a hugely sweeping statement, I find it hard to argue with, he seems to almost be an upbeat Nick Drake. Having released two EP’s already gaining an ever growing fan base his debut album ‘Every Kingdom’ was greeted with high anticipation. It was no surprise that the CD was truly fantastic, everything from the soulful voice, which has a very distinct sound and I feel makes the album, to the lyrics on tracks like ‘Old Pine’. The song that really leapt out at me in front of all other songs in ‘Black Flies’, there is something about its slow slightly dark feel that completely hypnotizes you.
Technically the CD matches up to its expectations as well, bringing that finger picking folk sound to the songs and the way the album has been composed truly does give the whole album a completely original and unique sound. It isn’t too often in songs where you can clearly hear every single instrument being used but you can with this, which is just another plus.
There are no real negatives to this album. There are several songs on the record which have been on EP’s; but those songs have been altered slightly adding a new element to them.
I would definitely recommend you give this album a listen if acoustic music is your thing, and even if it isn’t you will most likely be pleasantly surprised. This really is one of the greater releases of the year and is not one to be missed.
Ed Sheeran is without a doubt one of the most hyped UK artists around at the moment; with the recent release of his debut album ‘+’ there was some serious expectations to live up to.
When I first listened to the album I wasn’t that impressed, it seemed like he had given up some of his quirky style to get the album made, and also a lot of the tracks on the record were already well known, so it seemed to lack anything that new and exciting. On the second listen however I was blown away. The vocals on tracks such as ‘Give Me Love’ are comparable to those of Damien Rice and the lyrics in ‘Kiss Me’ are some of the most poetic songs I’ve ever listened to and stood out as my favourite on the album. What I liked most about the album was the fact that even though there are tracks that have been floating around for a while he has completely reinvented the songs to make them brand new ‘U.N.I.’ and ‘Wake Me Up’ are just a few examples. This man has the poetic ability and guitar skills of Jason Mraz, whilst creating love ballads that can relate to listeners of all ages.
However he isn’t a one themed musician, he covers varying subject matter from love songs, to up beat songs to the more serious ‘The A Team’ telling the story of a young homeless girl who was pushed into prostitution, he even does a version of the old Irish folk song ‘The Parting Glass’.
If you are a fan of the acoustic troubadour then this is definitely an album for you. He is your traditional acoustic singer/songwriter with a twist.
Off to university and thought this was an apt song by Brandon Boyd, to see me on my way…
"It takes courage and control, but you start by letting go"
The song deals with a common theme that Brandon Boyd often talks about, (both in song and in interviews) which is allowing yourself to live a life of expression and freedom of fear of how others might judge you. It can be easy to let this fear control every aspect of your life, from the petty things like how you dress, to more major decisions like what you do for a living or where you live. Without even realizing it, many people make these decisions based on what they feel is expected of them rather than what they may have done if no one judged them.
check it out...
Marmalade Sky are a four piece British rock band from Bristol, their newest EP is quite rightly titled ‘British Boy’. Whilst the band is unsigned, anyone who takes the time to listen to them will be greeted with true great British rock and roll with influences such as The Rolling Stones and The Who.
Alex Clare is a musician based in London; he recently released his debut album ‘Lateness Of The Hour’. The record is a bag full of surprises, containing soulful voice comparable to the likes of John Legend and James Morrison, he also presents some pretty deep lyrics that will touch the listeners. However all this is shrouded with generic dubstep beats, which have become all too common to today’s music listeners. Now this isn’t to say that there is something wrong with dubstep as a genre, but this kind of feels like an attempt to grab extra fans, which is a shame as this album had some real potential.
The Vaccines are the latest craze in the ever-increasing British indie music scene. The release of their debut album What Did You Expect From The Vaccines? was welcomed to widespread acclaim, reaching number four in the UK album charts, not bad for a band that released their CD only ten months after forming.
The band claims to have many musical influences, such as 50s rock ’n’ roll and C86, and have also had comparisons drawn with the likes of The Ramones. These different musical styles can really be heard throughout the different tracks. One rather strong point on the record is the vocal ability of lead singer Justin Young, who not only has one of the most distinctive voices in the industry at present, but is also slightly reminiscent of White Lies lead singer Harry McVeigh.
The album itself is a prime of example of good indie rock, full of catchy guitar jingles and dark lyrics all strung together with an upbeat tempo. However it shouldn’t be treated as yet another commercial indie record. It is well thought out, and what make The Vaccines really special is that they don’t rely on just a single aspect of the band’s skills to make it worth listening to. Instead, each song switches its strongest point from good, meaningful lyrics, such as the song “Post Break-Up Sex,” which shows the bands more hard-hitting emotional side, with lyrics that many who have had break-ups can relate to, to the fast-paced, rhythmic song “Nørgaard,” which shows the airy classic indie talents the band possess and will get stuck in your head for days on end. This is one big positive about the record—the rich amount of variety the CD contains. It really separates the band from the rest. No two tracks are quite identical and will evoke a different emotion in their listeners.
PJ Harvey is a well known English Singer/Songwriter, a veteran in the music scene making her professional debut in the 1990’s. Harvey has been known for changing sound with each new album she releases as to not repeat herself twice. Her newest eighth studio album ‘Let England Shake’ is no exception; we see a very unique idea for an album, one that can only be described as courageous with an artist that has a big following.
The album, which was recorded over a five week period in a church giving a slightly airy feel to it, entered the UK album charts at #8. Harvey sticks with one main theme throughout the CD and that is the sense of ‘English Pride’.
It contains strong undertones of patriotism; with one of the titles itself named England. You really do get this sense of English pride from the album, without the pretentious ‘we are better than everyone’ attitude. The artist claimed she researched historical conflicts whilst creating the record, this influence is made very clear by tracks such as ‘The Glorious’ with bugles playing in the intro. On the whole it seems to give off a slightly more upbeat and less folksy Laura Marling ‘I Speak Because I Can’ vibe. On the downside the album does start to get a bit repetitive as it nears the middle, and transcends from an individual and bold CD of Glorious England into one long list of why England is good.
Samuel Bazan is an unsigned singer/songwriter from Olympia, WA; now living locally in NoHo, who recently recorded his debut album ‘Slow Down’. With many unsigned artists who release their first album, wonderful things can’t really be expected, but Samuel does a very good job of bridging the gap between amateur and quality, recording some catchy alternative rock tracks on the record.
The album, which was self-produced by Samuel, is full of well thought out love songs, with a vocal style and lyrics that will remind his listeners of a young Rob Thomas and guitar skills that are Santana-esque. Some stand out tracks on the CD are ‘Tell Me’ and ‘Forgiveness’ which I think set the general feel of the record. One thing that really stood out above the rest was the lyrics. There are no sound effects or pretentious ‘oohs’ and ‘aahs’ that you find in so many pop songs; just a man and his words with a good firm musical beat to back him up.
Samuel has certainly made a very solid album and the passion and hard work that has been put into making it can be felt. With more coverage he could have the potential to revive what seemed like a forgotten market in the industry, and with talent like that it is hard to imagine why this guy isn’t signed.
I urge everyone to give this Samuel Bazan a listen, just click the link below: