Monday, November 23, 2015

Night Beat Rewind: October 2015

The seventh edition of the Platinum Vinyl Awards is upon us, commonly known as #PlatVnyl7. Now they say that seven is a deeply spiritual number, the number of Perfection. I knew this was perfect from Day One. Now they recognize it. 

We begin with Christmas Music, which is way too early, but you can't fight city hall or the music industry. The only consolation is that we don't have a Christmas Music category in the finals, so this is all for entertainment (sorry) purposes only.

Christmas Music (Non-Eligible)

There was also a "release" from Rend Collective, but according to all the research I did it was simply a re-release this year, but its first release was for Christmas 2014. We were not fooled.

There were a number of Singles to kick off the #PlatVnyl7 Eligibility Year, so let's get right to it.

The Singles Scene

  • Audrey Assad - Even Unto Death 5 Emeralds
  • Crusoe - Captivate 4.75 Emeralds
  • Satellites and Sirens - Wildfire 4.50 Emeralds
  • Jeremy James Whitaker - Dreams 4.75 Emeralds
It's good to see Audrey Assad back. She was about to drop out of the scene, and that would be a great loss to Christian Music. And we have two new artists in Jeremy James Whitaker and Crusoe, which would be perfect to listen if stranded on a desert island.

We continue with a few items you probably wouldn't pack if you knew you were going to be stranded on that island.

Missing The Mark

  • Manafest - Reborn 3.75 Emeralds
  • Gordon Mote - Gordon Mote Sings Hymns and Songs of Inspiration 3.75 Emeralds
  • Playdough and DJ Sean Patrick - We Buy Gold 3.50 Emeralds
Not much to say here, except that I was extremely disappointed in Manafest this time around. I was expecting Rap/Rock and didn't get it. Now in this next group there are no disappointments, only Pure Platinum.

Pure Platinum Perfection

  • Capital Kings - II 5 Emeralds
  • Demon Hunter - Extremist (Deluxe Edition) 5 Emeralds
  • James Jackson and Atlanta Praise - Nothin But High Praise 5 Emeralds
  • Kevin Max - Starry Eyes Surprise 5 Emeralds
  • Salt of The Sound - Echoes of Wonder 5 Emeralds
  • Stryper - Fallen 5 Emeralds
  • Teramaze - Her Halo 5 Emeralds
WOW is all I can say here. Maybe not. Capital Kings abandoned synthpop for industrial and a darker sound overall and it really worked for me. James Jackson has an awesome Gospel Sound. Salt of The Sound continues to produce entrancing trance and Stryper. Trilogy, Smilogy. Let's go for 4. But of course the most pleasant surprise here is Kevin Max. We always knew he had a unique singing voice ("shimmering" voice), but who knew he could be the new "Ol Blue Eyes" (That's Sinatra fyi).

Update 12/21/16: Just recently discovered, but in time for the nominees is Australian Metal/Prog Rock band Teramaze. 3 Megasongs on an album (and a 4th just one second off the standard). And they are not afraid of long instrumental segments. A worthy successor to the Crown held by IONA.

As we always remind you, most of the releases fall somewhere in the middle, in a realm we at The Night Beat refer to as 

Semi-Precious Metal

  • Alert 312 - The Upside Eternal 4.75 Emeralds
  • Bri (Briana Babineaux) - I'll Be The One 4.75 Emeralds
  • Crowder - Neon Porch Extravaganza 4.50 Emeralds
  • Michael English - Worship 4.50 Emeralds
  • Alex Faith - Bloodlines 4.50 Emeralds
  • Jordan Feliz - Beloved 4.50 Emeralds
  • Jon Foreman - The Wonderlands: Dawn 4.75 Emeralds
  • foreveratlast - Ghosts Again 4.75 Emeralds
  • For King and Country - Run Wild, Live Free, Love Strong (Anniversary Edition) 4.50 Emeralds
  • For Today - Wake 4.50 Emeralds
  • Gateway Worship - Walls 4.50 Emeralds
  • Generation Unleashed - Come Alive (Live) 4.50 Emeralds
  • Hillsong Worship - Open Heaven 4.75 Emeralds
  • Hollyn - Hollyn 4.75 Emeralds
  • Jenny & Tyler - Of This I'm Sure 4.75 Emeralds
  • Kolby Koloff - Grow EP 4.50 Emeralds
  • Lights Go Down - We Kept It Alive 4.75 Emeralds
  • Lovelite - Hopeful Stranger 4.50 Emeralds
  • Low and Behold - Uppers 4.75 Emeralds
  • Jon McLaughlin - Like Us 4.50 Emeralds
  • John Mark McMillan - Live at The Knight 4.75 Emeralds
  • Monolog - Transparency 4.75 Emeralds
  • Michael O'Brien - Psalms, Hymns, and Spiritual Songs 4.75 Emeralds
  • Andrew Peterson - The Burning Edge of Dawn 4.75 Emeralds   
  • Phillips, Craig and Dean - 20th Century Masters 4.50 Emeralds
  • Cindy Cruse Ratcliffe - Edge of The Universe (Live at Lakewood) 4.50 Emeralds
  • Rawsrvnt - Game Changer 4.75 Emeralds
  • S.O. - So It Ends 4.50 Emeralds
  • Sanctus Real - Best of Sanctus Real 4.75 Emeralds
  • Ricardo Sanchez - Grand Symphony 4.75 Emeralds
  • Seventh Day Slumber - Redline EP 4.75 Emeralds 
  • Stars Go Dim - Stars Go Dim 4.75 Emeralds
  • Tru Serva - Eyes Open 4.75 Emeralds
  • Austin Stone Worship - This Glorious Grace 4.50 Emeralds
  • John Tibbs - Dead Man Walking 4.75 Emeralds
  • Tim Timmons - Awake Our Sould 4.75 Emeralds
  • Transform DJs - Never Alone 4.75 Emeralds
  • Various Artists - Blessed Assurance: The New Hymns of Fanny Crosby 4.50 Emeralds
  • Various Artists - Holy Hip Hop Volume 20 4.75 Emeralds
  • V.Rose - Hearts Up .450 Emeralds
  • Vocal Few - The Dream Alive 4.50 Emeralds   
  • Tyler Ward - Yellow Boxes, Day One 4.75 Emeralds
  • Jean Watson - Steady My Gaze 4.50 Emeralds
I am finally finished. I am forgoing links, but for a different reason. I may put in links for Christmas music, but I am going to start linking the quarterly wraps. Since the releases are all there except for those that missed the mark, and they are spread out by genre, it is a lot less taxing. Until next time, I am Awaiting Your Reply.    

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Shemita Songs: The 2015 Platinum Vinyl Awards 4th Qtr - Pop

We have finally finished with the 4th Quarter Rollout. I know, the quarter ended September 30, and it's almost December. We had our sweepstakes running, the end of one year and beginning of the next, and a whole boatload of entries. So considering, I think we did make pretty good time.

The big winner for the Final Quarter was Pop Music, which is a big surprise. We just assume it to be Modern Worship every quarter because it usually is. Not that there aren't any Pop Artists in Christian Contemporary Music. There are plenty, but they are dwarfed by the sheer number of Hillsong Wannabees. Let's get to our final listing.

Pop Music

This was a big quarter for Pop. We had two Perfect albums in Annie Moses Band and JJ Heller, and some very solid entries from the others, including a Comeback to Remember from Nichole Nordeman. We are finished. Until next time, I am Awaiting Your Reply.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Shemita Songs: The 2015 Platinum Vinyl Awards 4th Qtr - Rock

We are heading down the stretch folks. Rock was tied with Modern Worship for the second most entries this quarter. The big surprise in that statement isn't that rock wasn't well represented at other times, it is that Modern Worship wasn't number one. A dozen entries is pretty good. Let's get to it.

Rock Music

Next up is the big winner, and it was POP. Who woulda thunk it. Until next time, I am Awaiting Your Reply.

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Shemita Songs: The 2015 Platinum Vinyl Awards 4th Qtr - Modern Worship

This is a strange quarter. One where Modern Worship doesn't wind up with the most entrants, but such is the case. They are actually tied with Rock this quarter, and only tied for second place at that. Let's get to it.

Modern Worship

One big surprise is the presence of THREE Perfect 5's on this list. That doesn't happen very often. Part of the Hillsongification of the Genre. Next is Rock. Until then, I am Awaiting Your Reply.

Friday, November 13, 2015

Shemita Songs: The 2015 Platinum Vinyl Awards 4th Qtr - Adult Contemporary

I usually make fun of Adult Contemporary. I like to call it Air Conditioning Music. You know, it keeps you comfortable. Well the air conditioner is blowing pretty well, despite it now being November. Just Joking. These were the releases for the Summer Months, so AC is just fine then.

Adult Contemporary/Inspirational

The City Harmonic roared back on top this quarter with a Perfect Entry. I was beginning to worry about them. The big surprise of the quarter, however, came from Amber Nelon Thompson. With Southern Gospel history I was expecting a test to my gag reflexes. Good thing the youth generation decides to rebel. It leaves hope for the music world. Until next time, I am Awaiting Your Reply.