Sunday, November 20, 2022

IN MUSIC: Louis Tomlinson "Faith in the Future"

IN MUSIC
LOUIS TOMLINSON
Faith in the Future
(BMG)
__________

Hmm, the TWO shiniest
pop records of 2022 were
made by guys who once
were in the same band.
That's straight-up wacky.
__________

Truth be told, when a long-established, celebrated artist drops a new record, their past accolades and prior achievements become irrelevant. ALL that matters is what they've got cookin' NOW. And once one dismisses the typical distractions  "machine"-generated hype, schmancy packaging, appealing production, the allure of who's bangin' who, upcoming movie roles and so on, a new record release comes down to just ONE thing — songs.

Depending on the format, Faith in the Future houses anywhere from 14 to 21 songs — an impressive, exhaustive effort, to be sure. And throughout the affair, Louis Tomlinson "checks" all the right "boxes" with his signature style, swagger and charm. Simply put, the record is an intoxicating night out — an exhilarating orgy where Tomlinson entertains an array of contemporary influences, while never losing his distinctive artistic identity.

Overseen by the extremely qualified Red Triangle production team and a slew of very capable co-writers, the songs feel genuine — honest and pure. Rife with relationship-fueled tension, "Written All Over Your Face" offers a crisp "morning after" account. Equally telling, "Face The Music" delivers one of the record's best lines — "I don't wanna face the music, but I still wanna dance with you." Owning a particularly crunchy, ska-flavored guitar riff,  "Out Of My System" serves as another tall standout.

Silver Tongues (Official Video)

From the epic-sized opener, "The Greatest" to the soaring "Bigger Than Me" to the catchy "Silver Tongues" to the ambient "She Is Beauty We Are World Class" to the transparent "Common People," Faith in the Future possesses the ability to "scratch" that "itch" — wherever one's itch happens to be. Among my personal itches that Tomlinson scratches best  the MASSIVE heartache ballads, "Chicago" and "Angels Fly," as well as the 110% irresistible "Headline" and the record-closing, "That's The Way Love Goes" — a delicate, heartfelt treasure that showcases Tomlinson perched atop the tippy of his songwriting apex.

In sum, Faith in the Future crushes with Buick-sized hooks and infectious melodies. And Louis Tomlinson proves — even after all this time, to be an important artist who continues moving in only one direction  forward. (A+)

Faith in the Future (Track List)
01 The Greatest 3:02
02 Written All Over Your Face 2:41
03 Bigger Than Me 3:42
04 Lucky Again 3:28 
05 Face The Music 2:49 
06 Chicago 3:53 
07 All This Time 2:56 
08 Out Of My System 2:18 
09 Headline 2:54 
10 Saturdays 4:25 
11 Silver Tongues 3:26 
12 She Is Beauty We Are World Class 3:40 
13 Common People 2:59 
14 Angels Fly 3:38
15 Paradise 3:32
16 Holding On To Heartache 3:31
17 Copy Of A Copy Of A Copy (Live From Lima) 4:16
18 That's The Way Love Goes 2:31

Additional Bonus Tracks
- Change
- High in California
- Face the Music (Acoustic Demo)

Street Date 11.11.22
Record Label BMG

-Christopher Long
(November 2022)


- A SHOT OF POISON -
"10th Anniversary Edition"
(2020)
__________

- SUPERSTAR -
__________

- SHOUT IT OUT LOUD -
(2014)
__________

- C'MON! -
(2012)

Tuesday, November 15, 2022

IN MUSIC: Festergore "Synchronizing the Kozmos"

IN MUSIC
FESTERGORE
Synchronizing
the Kozmos
__________

Got a craving for a
cozy feel-good this
holiday season?
__________

Well, look no further. That is, if the "cozy feels" you crave are that of getting your head split open by a bruiser with a ball bat who then performs a tonsillectomy by reaching into your cracked skull (and through your throat) with one hand, while ripping your kidneys out through your ass with the other. Oddly, in today's super-competitive, less-than-sensitive metal world, that's a pretty accurate (and glowing) assessment of Synchronizing the Kozmos — the just-released debut EP from NYC's self-proclaimed "Deadass Death Metal" troupe,  Festergore.

FESTERGORE

Owning a classic death metal groove, while packing enough punch to propel ya face-first into the pit, the four-track slab is, as the kids say, "heavy AF." And the record's uncompromised street cred, combined with unapologetic energy is a sure-fire recipe for a brutal, head bangin' disaster. Furthermore, in the immortal words of that great American poet, Hank Williams Jr., Festergore also boasts a bit of a "family tradition," as guitarist Tom Mahoney is the son-in-law of Anthony Bramante — co-founding lead guitarist of the legendary "Big Five" metal band, Nuclear Assault. GAME OVER!

TRACKLIST
1. Festering Gore 4:43
2. Surrender To Madness 4:15
3. The View From Halfway Down 5:09
4. Lost To The Bog 4:57


-Christopher Long
(November 2022)



- A SHOT OF POISON -
"10th Anniversary Edition"
(2020)
__________

- SUPERSTAR -
__________

- SHOUT IT OUT LOUD -
(2014)
__________

- C'MON! -
(2012)

Wednesday, October 26, 2022

IN MUSIC: Chuck Lazaras "1971"

IN MUSIC
CHUCK LAZARAS
1971
(Ghoul Tone Records)
__________

A slew of new movies, books
and records have dropped so
far in 2022. While I remained
distracted throughout the past
spring and summer seasons,
I'm now finally able to circle
back and share a few faves.
__________

For years now, he’s been recognized as one of the go-to guitar gurus on Florida's underground music scene — an in-demand live hired gun and studio session player. Equally, he’s acknowledged as a solid songwriting collaborator — producing and co-producing an array of projects for various rock, punk and metal artists.

Currently, Chuck Lazaras performs with his longtime band, Lazaras, while also playing for the celebrated Tampa-based punk combo, Boney Fiend. Additionally, Chuck serves as guitarist and musical director for former Dead Serios frontman, DL Serios. And recently, he delivered his debut solo effort, 1971.

Dig Chuck's smokin' new video -  "Devil's Lettuce"
(NOW ON YOUTUBE)

If his record sounds eerily familiar, that's certainly intentional. Admittedly inspired by the early '70s-era riffs and imagery of classic Black Sabbath, Lazaras remains laser-focused on his signature brand of "doom" metal throughout the five-song EP — a point proven particularly on the lead-off video single, "Devil's Lettuce." Cementing his cred even further, Lazaras actually secured legendary metal musician, Tim "Ripper" Owens to provide guest lead vocals on another standout track, "The Return." How on earth did he manage to bag the former Judas Priest frontman? "I just called him and asked," Lazaras confessed to me in a recent interview.

CHUCK LAZARAS

Lazaras rounds out his mighty power trio with bassist Brad Elliott and drummer John Morgan — a tidy little unit that, aside from Owens' performance, cut the entire record. Produced by Lazaras and engineered by Brendon Paredes, 1971 was created at famed Studio 101 in Melbourne, Florida.

From the record's overall vibe and sound, right down to the use of his vintage Gibson SGs to the fringe on his custom black leather jacket worn in a recent promo video, Chuck Lazaras offers his audience an authentic, old-school metal experience. And in the process, he delivers one of the most unique and appealing rock slabs of 2022.

1971 - debut solo record from Chuck Lazaras

1971 Track List

1. Five Years 4:16
2. The Return (Featuring Tim "Ripper" Owens) - 4:27
3. The Witch - 3:42
4. Dirge for a Demon / Lucifer's Lament / The Fall - 10:42
5. Devil's Lettuce - 5:10

Running Time 28:17
Label Ghoul Tone Records
Release Date May 13, 2022

-Christopher Long
(October 2022)

CHUCK LAZARAS ONLINE



- A SHOT OF POISON -
"10th Anniversary Edition"
(2020)
__________

- SUPERSTAR -
__________

- SHOUT IT OUT LOUD -
(2014)
__________

- C'MON! -
(2012)

Friday, September 30, 2022

IN MUSIC: DL Serios "Pecker"

IN MUSIC
DL SERIOS
Pecker
(Ghoul Tone Records)
__________

Under my longtime rock
and roll alias, DL SERIOS,
I founded the outrageous,
award-winning Florida-based
band DEAD SERIOS back
in 1985. In 2020 I split and
started a solo thing. Today,
I released my debut album.
__________

Known for our high-octane stage shows, irreverent songs and rabid following, DEAD SERIOS performed from coast to coast with such marquee acts as Anthrax, Marilyn Manson, Faith No More and GWAR. During the band’s 30-year run, DEAD SERIOS also was featured in prestigious music publications, including Billboard and Thrash Metal. We released numerous records on an array of indie labels, and our music has appeared in various movie soundtracks. The 1989 hip hop / metal hybrid, "Butterbean Queen," became an oft-played track at college radio. Hard-to-find DEAD SERIOS releases continue to bring in top-dollar online, as well as at international record collector's events.

DEAD SERIOS CIRCA 1990
(That's me with the baby doll.)

In 2020, I launched my punchy solo project — a stylistic barroom brawl between metal messiahs Motörhead and punk pioneers the Ramones — refereed by pop princess Debbie Gibson.  Fueled by the high-octane leadoff video single, "Feeling Freakie," my debut solo record, PECKER, also features guest performances from past and present members of such legendary rock bands as Foghat and the Pat Travers Band. PECKER comes to roost in physical formats and at streaming platforms on September 30, 2022.

"FEELING FREAKIE"
(Official music video)

Production
Produced by DL Serios, Chuck Lazaras and Brendon Paredes
Recorded and mixed by Brendon Paredes at Studio 101 / Melbourne, FL

Players
DL Serios – lead vocals
Chuck Lazaras – guitars
Tommy Craig – drums
Katty Pleasant – backing vocals
Bryan Dumas – bass
Rodney O’Quinn – bass
Glenn Anthony – bass
Darrell Fleming – bass

PECKER PLAYERS
L-R, Chuck (Boney Fiend), Rodney (Foghat),
Tommy (Pat Travers Band) and ME!

Tracks
01. Feeling Freakie (3:34)
02. What Does Dotty Do? (2:35)
03. Piss Test (2:10)
04. Smile Sara, Smile (4:43)
05. Me-Me! No-No! (2:34)
06. Pizza Face (2:55)
07. Silly Putty Buddy (2:18)
08. Boom Chick-a-Pop (3:59)

I "labored" for months "birthing" PECKER!

Appearances
10.6 Savvy Vinyl Records – Melbourne, FL (In-store performance and meet-n-greet)
10.08 Downtown Oktoberfest – Melbourne, FL (Main stage headliner)
11.05 Space Coast Music Festival – Eau Gallie, FL (Main stage featured artist)
12.26 Wid's Place – Melbourne, FL
*Additional dates TBA


Online


Streaming

*Proper media resources are available upon request:
AuthorChristopherLong@yahoo.com

-Christopher Long
(September 2022)



- A SHOT OF POISON -
"10th Anniversary Edition"
(2020)
__________

- SUPERSTAR -
__________

- SHOUT IT OUT LOUD -
(2014)
__________

- C'MON! -
(2012)

Saturday, September 24, 2022

IN MUSIC: Harry Styles "Harry's House"

IN MUSIC
HARRY STYLES
Harry's House
(Columbia Records)
__________

I had a proper review all
prepped the day this was
released. But since late
May, my world has been
in such a state of total
chaos, it kinda just fell
through the cracks. But
with Don't Worry Darling
finally hitting theaters this
weekend, I was prompted
to circle back and share a
few thoughts on one of
the year's shiniest records.
__________

If Harry Styles is sitting at his dining room table, and on that table is the complete array of components that make his music fresh and fun, compelling and relevant, that impressive pile would literally be spilling onto the plush carpet-covered floor of his swanky English abode.

A gen-u-wine "old soul," Styles revealed his classic pop / rock influences in the grooves of his self-titled 2017 debut record. His irresistible 2019 sophomore set, Fine Line, served as the much-needed golden soundtrack that lit up the otherwise dark COVID-driven days of 2020 and 2021. Now, at the dawn of the dubious post-apocalyptic "new normal" era, Styles returns with album #3, Harry's HouseThe 13-song electro-pop seduction finds the 28-year-old singer / songwriter / actor / super-hottie moving in only one direction — forward.

"As it Was" (Official music video)

The low-fi-sounding throwback, "As it Was," represents precisely the direction I'd hoped Styles wouldn't be headed with Harry's House. But what do I know? The lead-off track quickly has become one of the biggest singles of 2022. Conversely, the soopah-sweet, disco-flavored follow-up single, "Late Night Talking," is pure pop perfection. While the painfully pandering "Boyfriends" has been ridiculously over-rated, "Grapejuice" not only is a record highlight but one of Styles' strongest efforts to date.

While Harry's House takes something of a stylistic left turn, it was the smart play — and played quite well — making for one of the year's best and brightest releases. In sum, Godley & Creme would be SO proud!

-Christopher Long
(September 2022)


- A SHOT OF POISON -
"10th Anniversary Edition"
(2020)
__________

- SUPERSTAR -
__________

- SHOUT IT OUT LOUD -
(2014)
__________

- C'MON! -
(2012)

Thursday, September 22, 2022

IN MUSIC: Lauran Hibberd "Garageband Superstar"

IN MUSIC
LAURAN HIBBERD
Garageband Superstar
(Virgin Records)
__________

Simply put, this record
makes me happy that
I'm not dead.
__________

In an industry driven by a cast of less-than-compelling, prefabricated frauds, British songwriting garage pop princess, Lauran Hibberd, might be the last honest (and interesting) artist left standing. And her just-released debut (full-length) slab, Garageband Superstar, is a sparkly treasure.

I'm Insecure (Official Video)

Hot Boys ft.Viji (Official Video)

For those who crave the sonic crunch, tankard-sized hooks, massive melodies and street-smart / transparent lyrics, Garageband Superstar delivers in spades — arguably the strongest, most exciting record of 2022.

Garageband Superstar Track List

01. Rollercoaster
02. Still Running (5K)
03. Step Mum
04. Average Joe
05. Hot Boys
06. That Was A Joke
07. Get Some
08. Garageband Superstar
09. Hole In The Head
10. I'm Insecure
11. Slimming Down
12. Last Song Ever

-Christopher Long
(September 2022)


- A SHOT OF POISON -
"10th Anniversary Edition"
(2020)
__________

- SUPERSTAR -
__________

- SHOUT IT OUT LOUD -
(2014)
__________

- C'MON! -
(2012)