Friday, March 29, 2013

Night Beat Rewind: March 2013

March brings us to the midway point of eligibility for the 4th Annual Platinum Vinyl Awards. For those new readers of the WENC Night Beat, the Platinum Vinyl Awards, now in its fourth year, runs from October 1 - September  30.

Before we get to the entries a little housecleaning. Sparrow Records released a series of Greatest Hits albums this month, entitled "Icon", and the initial releases were of Steven Curtis Chapman, Amy Grant, Newsboys, and CeCe Winans. As Amazon is carrying them in CD only and no samples were available, they receive no rating and are not eligible. Also among the unrated and ineligible releases are new "Deluxe Editions" of KJ-52 Dangerous (made initial pool for current awards), and Francesca Battistelli's Hundred More Years (made the second PVA pool). For the same reasons as the Icon series, these are also unrated. There is one last ineligible release, and that is Family Force Five, The Third. Not only couldn't I find a audio sample, it is just a rearranged version of III, which didn't get into the pool. Now onto those that did get an Emerald Rating, though it wasn't high enough and it is said that these releases are:

Missing The Mark

Now once again, all of these releases are pretty good. It's just that pretty good isn't enough to make the cut among the Platinum Vinyl Awards. On the complete other end of the spectrum are those albums that completely wowed me. These albums are

Pure Platinum

Of course not all albums are perfect, and not all albums miss the mark. Most of them lie somewhere in between, in a place we call

Semi-Precious Metal

That completes this edition of Night Beat Rewind. No Fooling. It's nice to be up to date and on schedule right now. Click on the linked titles to buy from Amazon and support The Night Beat at the same time. Until next time, I am Awaiting Your Reply.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Jade Kerrion Book Tour


Jade Kerrion's two newest novels, Earth-Sim and When the Silence Ends, are pulling in fantastic reviews. Please take a moment to checkthem out and take advantage of the book launch sale. Keep reading to find the coupon code!

EARTH-SIM


Amazon Rating: 4.8 Stars (13 reviews)</
strong>
"Earth-Sim starts off awesome and just keeps getting even better...Ms. Kerrion
has done an amazing job with her world-building...This is one book that I will find
myself rereading over and over - and one that I will encourage all of my friends to
read."
—Cara Drake, Amazon reviewer

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Was the super-continent of Pangaea split because of a management dispute? Is the biblical flood the earliest evidence of why "technology and water don't mix"? If you always suspected that mass extinctions, such as the Black Death, had an otherworldly reason, you just might be right. Is there a real message hidden in the
mysterious manuscripts that human sages and savants have created through the generations? Is there life out there, beyond our planet, and why has none of it shown up on Earth yet?

Earth-Sim is a unique spin on the history of Earth and the history of mankind. What if Earth and the entire universe were actually part of a simulation program? What if the most iconic and memorable events in Earth's history were decisions (or more frequently accidents) triggered by two college students, Jem Moran and Kir Davos, who are still sorting out the finer points of working together and more importantly, still arguing over the finer points of planetary management?

Bring your sense of humor. Earth-Sim is frequently whimsical and often irreverent. Either way, you finally have someone to blame for the state the world is in.

E-books available at Amazon</
a>, Amazon UK, href="https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/id599432017" target="_blank">Apple</
a>,
target="_blank">Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Smashwords

Paperbacks available at Amazon, title="Amazon UK" href="http://www.amazon.co.uk/Earth-Sim-Jade-Kerrion/dp/
1482366363/" target="_blank">Amazon UK
, href="http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/earth-sim-jade-kerrion/1114293589?
ean=9781482366365" target="_blank">Barnes & Noble
, Book Depository

BOOK LAUNCH SALE (50% DISCOUNT):</
span> Grab a copy of Earth-Sim for only $1.50 at title="Smashwords" href="https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/281672"
target="_blank">Smashwords
with coupon code MS68F. Valid until April 15.



When the Silence Ends


Amazon Ratings: 4.6 Stars (9 reviews)</
strong>
“Wow! When the Silence Ends is captivating! I laughed, I cried, I could not
put it down. Forget Harry Potter and Twilight…every young adult should read this
book!”
—KatRomeo, Amazon reviewer
title="When The Silence Ends" src="http://www.jadekerrion.com/wp-content/
uploads/2011/11/rsz_when_the_silence_ends-198x300.jpg" alt="" width="198"
height="300" />When you choose your friends, you also choose your enemies.
Seventeen-year old Dee wants nothing more than to help her twin brother, Dum,  break free from the trauma in their childhood and speak again, but the only person who can help Dum is the alpha empath, Danyael Sabre, whom the U.S. government considers a terrorist and traitor. The search for Danyael will lead Dee and Dum from the sheltered protection of the Mutant Affairs Council and into the violent, gang-controlled heart of Anacostia.

Ensnared by Danyael’s complicated network of friends and enemies, Dee makes her stand in a political and social war that she is ill equipped to fight. What can one human, armed only with her wits and pepper spray, do against the super-powered mutants who dominate the Genetic Revolution?

America, nevertheless, is ripe for transformation. Exhausted by decades of belligerence between humans and their genetic derivatives--the clones, in vitros, and mutants--society is on the verge of falling apart or growing up. Dee, with her sassy attitude and smart mouth, is the unwitting pebble that starts the avalanche of change. In her quest to help her brother become normal, Dee will finally learn what it means to be extraordinary.

When the Silence Ends is a Young Adult novel in the award-winning
Double Helix series.

E-books available at Amazon, Amazon UK, href="http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/when-the-silence-ends-jade-kerrion/
1114072231?ean=2940016357720" target="_blank">Barnes & Noble
, title="Smashwords" href="https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/297526"
target="_blank">Smashwords


Paperbacks available at Amazon, target="_blank">Amazon UK, Barnes & Noble, Book Depository

BOOK LAUNCH SALE (50% DISCOUNT):</
span> Grab a copy of When the Silence Ends for only $1.50 at
Smashwords with coupon code FL93Y. Valid until April 15.


Find Jade Kerrion at Website / href="http://www.facebook.com/JadeKerrion" target="_blank">Facebook</
a> /
target="_blank">Twitter


Monday, March 25, 2013

God Save The Kings and Queens

Reboots are all the rage these days. Sometimes they work. Take Batman for example. The Dark Knight may be a little tough to take for some, especially when your first introduction to the superhero was the Adam West TV Show. Still, if you've ever gotten ahold of some of the early comics, and I saw them in a library book a long time ago, Superman was a vigilante who really wasn't all to concerned if the police got to arrest the criminal, only that he was stopped. So it actually is closer to original intent. Then there are times that it doesn't work. Take the new Spiderman. Now, I admit, Emma Stone is cute, but how can you have Spidey without Mary Jane. Plus it really got bogged down in back story, IMHO.

Which brings me to Audio Adrenaline. When the band broke up back in 2006 it shocked a lot of fans, and we pretty much despaired of ever seeing Audio A. again. It was strike two for anyone who liked DC Talk. Combine with that a big Breakup in the punk world with Bleach a few years before that and it seemed that Christian Rock was in a big time decline.

The only thing that died was DC Talk, but the band has, by its death, Resurrected Christian Rock. First came the solo act known as TobyMac, bringing the Rap/Rock sound mainstream, and incidentally killing Rap Music by making it an offshoot of Rock. Michael Tait had a brief solo career as well but that quickly fizzled. But now he has come into his own as lead vocalist for Newsboys. Then there was the third member of the group. Kevin Max. Like Toby Mac he seemed to have a thriving career as a solo artist, and that unique "shimmering" voice seemed to be a good fit for alternative. No one would have called him a rock singer. But they would be wrong.

The Audio Adrenaline reboot, entitled Kings & Queens [+video]  is pure genius. Surviving original member Will McGinnis knew they couldn't sell a reformed band singing old songs for long, so he blew it up. Recruiting former members of Superchick and Bleach and K-Max on vocals, the new edition has been tailored to Maxes voice. By way of comparison, go to my Flashback Friday post on the band for a look at the "Classic" sound.

This album got my "Wow" Meter Broken. The only thing linking the two Audio Adrenaline's is the name, and that's a good thing. Both are superior products so there can be no comparison. In retrospect 5 Emeralds seems too low, but that's as high as the meter goes. Kings and Queens is lacking in "adrenaline" but Kevin Max isn't a screamer. The lyrics shine here. There's even a bit of snark.

"A new face, all new friends, a new medicine. I don't need a big big house, a new job, with the same benefits."
"It's a Christian ship but she's sinking quick. Now my life's a mess and I want to change it".

Now don't tell me that it's a coincidence that Audio A's first hit was Big House. Or That Kevin Max had a poem at the end of Supernatural that was called "there's a treason at sea". A little bit of attitude prevails.

Click on the highlighted album title to get the download through Amazon and support the Night Beat at the same time. Welcome Back Audio Adrenaline. Until next time, I am Awaiting Your Reply.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Night Beat Rewind: February 2013

It always happens this time of year. I know, for a Word of Faith person this sure is a bad confession. Good or bad, it's a fact. When you're a one person operation, trying to keep up with new releases while doing an awards ceremony for the past year is pretty daunting. As long as I don't get two months behind during these months, I'm doing okay.

As always, we begin with those albums which will not make the next nominating pool. Those in effect which are

Missing The Mark

  • Christine D'Clario - Deeper 3.75 Emeralds
  • Kutless - The Worship Collection 3.75 Emeralds
  • Red - Release The Panic 3.75 Emeralds
  • Those Who Fear - Unholy Anger 3.75 Emeralds
As always, these are all near misses. Not too many turkeys out there. The industry does a pretty good job keeping the pretenders (not the British Band featuring Chrissie Hynde) out. On the other hand, there are the wow moments, or those releases that are 

Pure Platinum

This is the perfect example of a great dance album. Featured appearances by everyone under the sun, including +Beckah Shae. Of course, most albums fall somewhere in the middle, an area we refer to at The Night Beat as:

Semi-Precious Metal

And this month did not disappoint, as we had nineteen releases pop up here, most in the very high range, which is a very good thing.
  • Arrows and Sound - Arrows and Sound 4.75 Emeralds
  • Daniel Bashta - The Invisible 4.50 Emeralds
  • Jeremy Camp - Reckless 4.50 Emeralds
  • Steven Curtis Chapman - #1's Volume 2 4.50 Emeralds
  • Hillsong United - Zion 4.50 Emeralds
  • Je'kob - Faith, Hope, Love 4.75 Emeralds
  • Canton Jones - CJ Talks 4.75 Emeralds
  • William Murphy - God Chaser 4.75 Emeralds
  • Newsong - Swallow The Ocean - 4.50 Emeralds
  • Britt Nicole - Gold 4.50 Emeralds
  • Plumb - Need You Now 4.75 Emeralds
  • Salvador - Make Some Noise 4.75 Emeralds
  • Sanctus Real - Run 4.50 Emeralds
  • Jenny Simmons - The Becoming 4.75 Emeralds
  • Spoken - Illusion 4.50 Emeralds
  • Tal and Acacia - Black and White 4.75 Emeralds
  • Various Artists - Mars Hill Music Worship Sampler 4.75 Emeralds
  • Various Artists - Love Never Fails 4.50 Emeralds
  • Paul Wilbur - Your Great Name 4.50 Emeralds
That concludes this edition of Night Beat Rewind. I'm glad that this is going out before April. Until next time, I am Awaiting Your Reply.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

The Nominations Begin: Rap Video of The Year

Now that the electronic categories are completed, we move on to Rap Music, and its more rock like (and Dance Like) sibling, Hip Hop. The Nominations for Video of The Year in the genre of Hip Hop and Rap are:

Fighter by +Manafest 

Goodbye by +JSon

I'm Good by +trip lee 

Lord Have Mercy (Feat Tedashii) by +Lecrae Moore 

They like Me by KJ-52


That concludes this category. Next up is more hard stuff, as the nominations for Hard Rock or Metal Video are next. Until then, I am Awaiting Your Reply.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

The Nominations Begin: Electronic/Industrial Video of The Year

Just because something is created on a synthesizer doesn't mean that it's dance music. It usually is but sometimes it is Trance (which just puts you into one), or Ambient (mood music), darkwave and Industrial (hard and loud). This is to honor those pioneers in music.

The nominees for the 3rd Annual Platinum Vinyl Award for Electronic/Industrial Video of The Year are:

Black Heart Hearse by White Collar Sideshow

Find Me by Anchor and Braille

Poison and Wine (Civil Wars Cover) by Satellites and Sirens

Spiral (feat Beth Bullock) by Andy Hunter

Sublime Currency by Abandoned Pools

That concludes the Electronic/Industrial Video Nominations. Hip Hop and Rap is next. Until then, I am Awaiting Your Reply.

Monday, March 11, 2013

The Nominations Begin: Dance/Synthpop Video of The Year

Nominations for the Electronic/Dance category this year were so large, and the field not just in Dance, that it necessitated splitting the category in two. We begin with Dance/Synthpop. Of course we are in the Video Awards at present here on the blog.

The Nominations for Dance/Synthpop Video of the Year are:

He Said by Group 1 Crew

Let it Go by Satellites and Sirens

Time (Spiral Galaxy Mix) by The Washington Projects

Toes by Lights

Zombie by Family Force Five

That concludes part one of the new electronic music genres. Next up is Electronic/Industrial. Until then, I am Awaiting Your Reply.


Saturday, March 9, 2013

The Nominations Begin: Pop Video of The Year

We continue with the Video Nominations, moving on to Pop Music. Once again, after watching, please use the comments below to cast a vote. I am trying to put an audience participation element in this years awards. And the nominees are:

Courageous by Casting Crowns


The Rescue by Adam Cappa


Scientists in Japan by Sara Groves

Secrets Don't Make Friends by Rocky Loves Emily

Watch over me by Holly Spears


Those are the five nominees. Right now I want you to vote for your favorite by making a comment below. Your vote will help pick the winner this year. Until the next time, I am Awaiting Your Reply.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

The Nominations Begin: Alternative Video of The Year

We always try to mix things up at the WENC Night Beat, and what better time then at Award Season. The third Platinum Vinyl Award is almost upon us, and the nominations are in. This year we begin the Music Video Awards, and there are genre based awards for Alternative, Pop, Dance/Synthpop, Electronic/Industrial, Hip-Hop/Rap, Hard Rock/Metal, and Rock, as well as General Field Video Awards in Video by a Male Artist, Video by a Female Artist, Video by a New Artist, and Video of The Year.

I would really like to encourage an audience vote this year, and this is one of the best ways I can figure on doing it. I am going to check on the possibilities of using +SoundCloud as a possibility of bringing in Song of The Year participation. I would suggest using the comments as your vote.

We begin with Alternative Video of The Year. By alternative, we mean Alternative Rock, not some strange new way of shooting video. There are only Five nominees per category, if we can make it, not the usual seven we try for. Here we go, in no particular order of odds. (Actually, I was trying to go alphabetical by song).

And the nominations for Alternative Video of The Year for the 3rd Platinum Vinyl Award are:

Daylight by Run, Kid, Run.



Find Me by Anchor and Braille


My Name is Eustace by Benjamin Dunn and the Animal Orchestra

The Proof of Your Love by For King and Country

Summer Forgets Me by Deas Vail

That gets things started here on the Blog. The Awards, as well as the nominations, will have a multiple pronged announcement. I am currently going through them all on Facebook, Google + and soon, on Twitter as well. Along with right here for Video announcement and voting and the complete list on the nomination page. Let the voting begin, and, as always, I am Awaiting Your Reply.

Monday, March 4, 2013

We Need Now to be faster than a bullet

Bands, as well as musical styles, tend to go through phases. No better example exists in the Christian Music world is Petra. You can build a musical biography by studying their albums. At 40 years they have experienced it all.

The subject of today's post has gone through a few phases. The name of the artist is Tiffany Arbuckle Lee, but she is popularly known by her stage name, Plumb.

Need You Now (How Many Times) marks the beginning of Plumb's Third Act, so to speak. The First Act began in 1997 With the eponymous release. Plumb was a band at the time, and Tiffany was the vocalist. It was sort of an alt-rock band, with Tiffany going into talk box sound from time to time. It was followed up with Candycoatedwaterdrops (1999). From the opening notes of Late Great Planet Earth, you knew we were in different territory. It was a career maker. 


But then there was a falling out, and Plumb disappeared from the CCM scene, but re-emerged in 2003 as the queen of the dance floor. Now married, and recording on Curb Records, she came out with two synthpop dance classics Beautiful Lumps Of Coal (2003) and Chaotic Resolve (2006), along with Blink (2007), most likely the only Children's Music Album that received significant radio play thanks to hits like "In My Arms". Children's Dance Music in a lot of cases.

Now comes Need You Now. Originally the album was to be entitled Faster Than a Bullet, but the Sandy Hook Massacre changed all that, and Mama Tiffany thought it best to remove the bullet reference, even though it refers back to Superman, and he was a good guy. Need You Now sounds so bland.

Thankfully it is only a title, and the album is anything but bland. Plum has left the dance floor. The new album is a mix of Adult Contemporary, Pop, and alternative, with only two of the 13 cuts dance. Even so, it marks the stretching of Plumb's talents, because you get to see everything she is capable of.

In the final analyses, I am going to give Need You Now a near perfect 4.75 Emeralds. The album grew on me, and I liked it more with each listen. It would be perfect if it was Faster Than a Bullet, but that's just my opinion. Until next time, I am Awaiting Your Reply.

P.S. - I would like to Welcome back all my +Triberr peeps back to the Night Beat Fold. I thought I had been abandoned, but the fault was mine. I just discovered a 1 blog per tribe rule. Since I now have two blogs, things can't go auto. I am back in business.