Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Time To Panic

I think that Record Companies need to start discovering bands once again. I know what you're thinking. Don't they do that all the time. Maybe some do, but the recent practice seems to be that they sign an independent band that has plugging around the concert scene for perhaps 5 or 10 years, and then when they don't really go on to super-stardom, they break up. It's time to retire they say. Retire, they've only been in the public eye for 2 or 3 years. Yeah, it was the 15 years in obscurity that really took the toll. At least when you discover somebody that just formed, you expect the first record to stink, and you let time work to mature you, and like Petra, you're around for 40 years.

Which brings me to RED. The band came to the attention of The Night Beat right from the start, thanks to internet radio. (If it was up to local CCM radio, nothing harder than the Talley Trio would cross these ears. Talk about a puke-fest).

End Of Silence started things off in 2006. No band could more artfully blend Hard Music and Orchestral Strings. It became RED's trademark. Especially with a song like Breathe Into Me (re done acoustically on the current album) and Already Over. Also, you can't deny, it's one of the most honest titles out there. Could things get better than this?

The answer came three years later. It was all a matter of Innocence & Instinct. The only word to describe this album is "Masterpiece". It should have been the "Fallen Moment" for red, you know, multi platinum stardom. 260,000 sold is a bit short. Still, any rock fan should have this album. Get the deluxe version with DVD if you can.

Until We Have Faces and Faceless appeared two years later. The Hymn for the Missing is hauntingly beautiful. Not as good as the first two, but still, a recognizable RED album.

Now comes Release The Panic , and I want to scream, "WHAT HAPPENED TO RED!!!" Somebody must have kidnapped the band and impersonated them in the recording studio. The Red Sound is gone. Thank god they escaped and took control before the album got released and so they return by track 7, but why keep those first 6 tracks. There wont be any real keepers with this album. It's the first Red Album that wont make the initial pool of the PVA's much less win. Panic Folks, Red seems to be in a tailspin. Maybe we can get a great album next year. This is good, average, okay 3.75 Emeralds. It becometh not Red.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Night Beat Rewind: January 2013

The time for the first edition of Night Beat Rewind for 2013 is at hand. January was a very active month this year, and that is not always the case. Usually things ramp up slowly. There were forty-five releases this past month, and not  surprisingly, almost all of them went into the initial pool. I'm usually pretty generous this time of the year, and it makes for a lot of work at the end.

As always, we begin with those albums which

Missed The Mark

There were eleven this time around, and remember, these aren't bad releases, just not outstanding. Don't worry, I'll let you know if they stink.
  • Awaken Us - The Forgotten 3.75 Emeralds
  • Ergo Rex - Breathe In The Roar 3.50 Emeralds
  • For A Season - Lion Hearted 3.75 Emeralds
  • The Hymns Collective - Season One 3.75 Emeralds
  • Junkyard Poets - Mrs. Sophomore  3.50 Emeralds
  • Marlo Moore - Simply Marlo Moore 3.75 Emeralds
  • OBB - OBB 3.50 Emeralds
  • Seven Years - Time to Change 3.50 Emeralds
  • Various Artists - Sharkey: 2013 3.75 Emeralds
  • Various Artists - Wow Gospel 2013 3.75 Emeralds
  • Karyn Williams - Only You 3.75 Emeralds
One note. Karyn Williams is just a wider release. It was released back in August 2012, which would have put it in this years running. I Still haven't changed my mind.

Pure Platinum

There were only two releases which were deemed perfect among the month's entries, which is pretty amazing. What's even more amazing is that one of them was a worship album. That just hasn't happened around here. The key to this one is the fact that the album came off as a "Worship Experience", not just as a bunch of worship songs.
  • Terra, Terra, Terra - The Space We Create 5 Emeralds
  • Kim Walker - Smith - Still Believe 5 Emeralds
Most of the releases, as is always the case, were neither good nor bad, but somewhere in the middle. I like to call these releases

Semi-Precious Metal

As always, there are a lot of these, twenty-one of them this time around.
  • Flynn Adam - Do or Die 4.75 Emeralds
  • Alert 312 - Vice and Virtue 4.50 Emeralds
  • Meredith Andrews - Worth It All 4.75 Emeralds
  • Bridgecity - Bridgecity 4.50 Emeralds
  • Bridge Music - New Has Come 4.50 Emeralds
  • Capital Kings - Capital Kings 4.50 Emeralds
  • Carman - Anthems of A Champion 4.25 Emeralds
  • Kurt Carr - Bless This House 4.75 Emeralds 
  • Casting Crowns - Acoustic Sessions, Volume 1 4.25 Emeralds
  • Jason Castro - Only A Mountain 4.50 Emeralds
  • Byron "Mr. Talkbox" Chambers - Show Me The Way EP 4.50 Emeralds
  • Dynasty - Beyond Measure 4.75 Emeralds
  • Colton Dixon - A Messenger 4.50 Emeralds
  • The Ember Days - More Than You Think 4.75 Emeralds
  • Fiction Family - Fiction Family Reunion 4.75 Emeralds
  • Charlie Hall - The Death of Death 4.75 Emeralds
  • Hearts of Saints - For All of Us 4.75 Emeralds
  • Love and Death - Between Here and Lost 4.75 Emeralds
  • Britt Nicole - Gold EP 4.25 Emeralds
  • Overcome - No Reserves, No Retreats, No Regrets 4.25 Emeralds
  • Matthew Parker - Meet Your Maker 4.75 Emeralds
  • Planetshakers - Limitless 4.75 Emeralds
  • Rend Collective Experiment - Campfire: Worship and Community Re-imagined 4.75 Emeralds
  • We Came As Romans - Understanding What We've Grown To Be Deluxe 4.75 Emeralds
  • Sho Baraka - Talented 10th 4.50 Emeralds
  • Starflyer 59 - IAMACEO 4.50 Emeralds
  • Chris Tomlin - Burning Lights 4.50 Emeralds
  • DA T.R.U.T.H. - Love, Hope, War 4.75 Emeralds
  • Twenty One Pilots - Vessel 4.50 Emeralds
  • Various - From The Inside Out 4.50 Emeralds
  • Various - Worship For Your Family (Yellow) 4.50 Emeralds
  • Vota - Love Found Me 4.50 Emeralds
  • Wavorly - Something Like Fiction (The Lost Albums) 4.50 Emeralds
 That concludes the January 2013 edition of Night Beat Rewind. Until next time, I am Awaiting Your Reply.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Its a long way to coupleary

I know, it's supposed to be Tipperary, but this is about Valentines Day. In honor of single guys everywhere, I have declared the first 16 or 17 days of February to be called Coupleary and give permission for them to be ignored. No more guilt trips.

Singleness does have its upside. Every year I save an average of $300 (just like I saved around $20K on a car last year by not buying one). Now I noticed the other day that Ash Wednesday is on February 13th. I'd like to see some poor sap try to use that for why he didn't get roses. "We're giving that up for lent." You know it's a tough call when it causes the Pope to say Take this job and shove it.

As a music blogger, I find a lot in lyrics, and while I would love to be like Rel Paul and say:

Girl you got me thinking, God must really love me
to give me someone like you, you, to really love me
hey hey hey, Oh, I'm like hey hey hey
And If I was really romantic, I'd go for Disciple's Kevin Young
So baby let's go dancing across the sky tonight
cause no mountain could keep me from your arms tonight
of all the things in my life, that I could rewrite,
I wouldn't trade a moment with you
Despite all the awww. There are plenty of things I'd trade. He's got his girl. While I'm a happy guy, when I get down around this time of year I sometimes agree with Cloud 2 Ground.

It's gonna be the last time I listen to my heart
cause it lied, and you lied
and I'm tired that I wont cry, I wont cry
look what you've done
I was crazy for you, so crazy for you.
And despite the years, I will agree with Skillet that

The older I get, will I get over it
it's been way to long for the times we missed
I can't believe it still hurts like this but I think
the older I get maybe I'll get over it
it's been way to long for the times we missed
I can't believe it still hurts like this.
While there is a certain someone I think about as I play woulda coulda shoulda, there are two others who could fit as well. My first crush was a girl in my church by the name of Tina Cavaleri. I was 13, I think she was 15 or 16. You know what that means. She didn't know I was alive. One time when our church got in a hugging mode I gave her a hug during service. Let's just say I now know what it's like to hug a dead fish.

At around the same time, there was another girl, Lori Ann Pierce, one of the Pastor's daughters. She was a cute petite blonde of around 12 or 13 and had a crush on me. Between the fact that I go for brunettes, and Tina was one, and she was somewhat younger, I didn't know she was alive. It was a double edged sword anyway.
  • If things go well: You are in. With the Church and Heaven. You may be a favorite son in law and even make Pastor someday.
  • If they don't: You can't even imagine the level of hell you'll be assigned to.
Lori's the only girl I could blackmail by saying that "She fell asleep on my lap." In reality she lay her head on my lap and fell to sleep while the youth group was returning from a trip to see a musical. I believe it was "The Missionary of Oz". It was in the pre -seat belt law era. Oh well. Woulda coulda shoulda.

February the 15th is almost here. That's when the Candy goes half-price.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Music Video Monday: The Abandoning

Welcome back to an all new edition of Music Video Monday. We've got some new videos finally, and just in time. Since I am just about finished picking the final nominees for this years Platinum Vinyl Awards, I need something to keep busy with. We start with a "new" band of sorts. Love and Death is the latest band by former KORN member Brian "Head" Welch. This is The Abandoning.

We continue with another band new to The Night Beat. This is Twenty One Pilots, and they appear to be a two piece synthpop act, with one on synth and the other on drums. This is Holding on to you from their recent release Vessel.

And we conclude with a long awaited sophomore release. It was way back at the beginnings of The WENC Night beat, about the same time I discovered Lara Landon (yeah, right). A group with the odd name of Vota, formerly Casting Pearls (who ticked off the lawyers for Casting Crowns), released a pretty decent "debut" album. Then they kind of slunk off into the background. They're back, though not as poppy this time around. This is the video for God of the Universe from their album Love Found Me.

That concludes this all new edition of Music Video Monday. I hope all of you are dug out (if the Blizzard of 2013 happened). Until next time, I am Awaiting Your Reply.