Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Hamilton: The Musical Manifesto

Made You Look. No, this isn't about the Broadway Musical that made Liberals Salivate last winter. This is a Music Blog, and I try to keep it free of political matters if I can. As a lover of history, especially American History, however, I will say, that if the Media was quoting the musical, that is a sure sign of Historical INACCURACY. Enough said.

No, the Hamilton referred to in the title is Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, the Home of The City Harmonic. These members of The Commonwealth CCM have grown up with The Night Beat and The Platinum Vinyl Awards, and it is with a heavy heart that we say goodbye. 

It was January, 2011. The Platinum Vinyl Awards was still in its infancy, being only #PlatVnyl2. (We are awarding #PlatVnyl7 and tallying #PlatVnyl8. It seems like ages ago). New Release Today (New Release Tuesday at the time) had as its album preview something called Introducing The City Harmonic. The second track on the 6 song 25 minute EP was entitled Manifesto, It was all the introduction the band needed. Manifesto made Song of The Year that year, and the EP was our Pick for Modern Worship Album of The Year. They just got edged out for Album of The Year. A little number called Barton Hollow by The Civil Wars came out the same year.

Personally, they let success get to their heads as I Have A Dream (October 2011) and Heart (September 2013) didn't really impress the judges here, though they were very good albums. They righted the ship, however, and came out with We Are (September 2015) which garnered a Perfect 5 Emeralds and entrance into #PlatVnyl6 and walked away with AC/Insp Album of The Year and AC/Insp Song of The Year for We Are One.

And now it is over. Six Years. But what a ride. The appropriately titled Benediction, recorded at Hamilton, is a fourteen song ride of a lifetime. A best of concert that will remind longtime fans of what they loved, and newbies cry for what they missed. Twelve of The Fourteen are from their four albums and not surprisingly the best represented is their "Debut" which had four of their six songs represented, including Manifesto.

The album kicks off with the appropriately titled My God (The Chorus is Oh My God), and doesn't let up from start to finish despite calming down for songs like Holy (Wedding Day) and Honestly (not the Stryper fave, though I think they could pull it off). Picking a favorite song is impossible. This is on auto repeat all this week.

You know a band will be missed when the live album shows that the audience clearly knows all the lyrics and sings along perfectly. I think you know my rating. 5 Emeralds

And All of the people of God sang along, AMEN. I am Awaiting Your Reply.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Copernicus Rocks: The 2017 Platinum Vinyl Awards 2nd Qtr - Pop

We are done. The finish line is in sight. Pop Music tied with Modern Worship with 11 entries this quarter. Let's cross the line together.

Pop Music

And we are done. And the prize is.... We get to move on to the third quarter. Thrilling, I know. The third Quarter is underway, and we are there. Until next time, I am Awaiting Your Reply. 

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Copernicus Rocks: The 2017 Platinum Vinyl Awards 2nd Qtr - Modern Worship

The Penultimate Post for the Second Quarter of 2017 is Modern Worship. Actually they won, sort of. First Place is a tie with Pop. Both had 11 entrants. Let's not wast any more time.

Modern Worship

Only one more post and we're done with the 2nd Quarter. Pop is next. Until then, I am Awaiting Your Reply.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Night Beat Rewind: May 2017

We are in the middle of June and we are ready to reveal the May edition of Rewind. One sign that things are slowly returning to normal. Slowly, because we are two thirds through the 3rd Quarter of 2017 and we are just now announcing the 2nd Quarter. Plus, we are just announcing the #PlatVnyl7 Nominees. In the good old days (just kidding, It is always better to have a lot of excellent music) we would have finished the awards by now. Such is the price of success. We begin this and every edition of Rewind with the song releases.

The Singles Scene

  • Canon - We Been Here 4.50 Emeralds
  • Brandon Heath - Whole Heart 4.75 Emeralds
  • Nobigdyl - Shakira (ft Marty) 3.50 Emeralds
  • Matthew Parker - Young Skywalker (May The Fourth Be With You) 4.50 Emeralds
  • Javier Rodriquez - Free 4.50 Emeralds
We move on from the songs to the albums. We begin with the albums of which will not make the 3rd Quarter Pool.

Missing The Mark

  • Change - Feels Like Nothing 3.75 Emeralds
  • Deathbreaker - Disconnect 3.75 Emeralds
  • Earth Groans - Renovate EP 3.50 Emeralds
  • Sherwin Gardner - Greater 3.75 Emeralds
  • Eric Heron - Dawn EP 3.75 Emeralds
  • Gretchen Keskeys - Pure Hope 3.75 Emeralds
  • New Wine - Encounter Us Holy Spirit 3.75 Emeralds
  • John Reuben - Reubonic 3.75 Emeralds
  • Jered Sanders - VERSEatility 3.75 Emeralds
Nine Missing The Mark is a hopeful sign. When you can reject that many in a month and still have more than enough entries, the state of music is doing well. From the Left Out to the Perfect.

Pure Platinum Perfection

  • Todd Agnew - From Grace to Glory: The Music of Todd Agnew 5 Emeralds
  • We Are Leo - The Rush And The Roar 5 Emeralds
  • Lowercase Noises - The Swiss Illness 5 Emeralds
  • Mandisa - Out of The Dark 5 Emeralds
  • Narrow Skies - Seasons: Midnight Horizons 5 Emeralds
  • Rend Collective - Build Your Kingdom Here: A Rend Collective Mixtape 5 Emeralds
  • At The Wayside - The Breakdown and The Fall 5 Emeralds
7 Perfect Albums in a month. Almost the same as the rejected. I guess that's called a good balance for the month. Finally we go to the music in the middle.

Semi-Precious Metal

  • Josh Baldwin - The War Is Over 4.50 Emeralds
  • Christ For The Nations Worship - Melody of Love 4.75 Emeralds
  • Robin Damron II - Live Forever EP 4.50 Emeralds
  • Abigail Duhon - Abigail Duhon EP 4.50 Emeralds
  • Folding Lights - Exiles EP 4.50 Emeralds
  • Gideon - Cold 4.75 Emeralds
  • Iron Bell Music - God That Saves 4.75 Emeralds
  • Least of These - Wolves EP 4.50 Emeralds
  • The Letter Black - Pain 4.75 Emeralds
  • Matthew Parker - Adventure (Deluxe) 4.75 Emeralds
  • RAWSRVNT - Shut It Down EP 4.75 Emeralds
  • Southern Raised - Another World 4.75 Emeralds
  • Willow Stephens - Willow Stephens EP 4.50 Emeralds
  • Various Artists - Top 25 Praise Songs 2017 4.50 Emeralds
  • Matthew West - Broken Things 4.75 Emeralds
  • Helen Yousaf - Custodians of Fire 4.50 Emeralds
And finally 15 Semi-Precious Metals. 31 releases crossed my desk this month, and I don't believe that I got them all. I usually don't. Until next time, I am Awaiting Your Reply.

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Copernicus Rocks: The 2017 Platinum Vinyl Awards 2nd Quarter - Inspirational

Next up is one of the biggies. Adult Contemporary, and its sister genre Inspirational, racked up a whopping 10 entrants into the pool this quarter. Rather than waste time with explanations, let us get to it.

Adult Contemporary/Inspirational

That does it for this grouping. A Brief glitch at the start may have allowed a blank post to go out. Apologies. This is what was supposed to happen. Until next time, I am Awaiting Your Reply.

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Copernicus Rocks: The 2017 Platinum Vinyl Awards - Dance

Dance is up next as we announce the pool entries for the 2nd Quarter of 2017. They had six entries, which is very good for the quarter. There are three more posts after this, and they all smash through the 7 nominee category listing in the finals. As I finished up our last post, I hope that Amazon gets quickly back online so that I can update these posts with their affiliate links. On to the Dance Entries.


I can hear you saying "wasn't Hollyn just nominated in Rap?" Yes, and now she is in the pool (Nominees aren't official until the pool is closed) in Dance. That is part of the problem with this artist. She carries off various styles. She can rap, has an R&B/Gospel Voice, Has a Synthpop Sound, and does it all well. It makes it hard to peg an album. Next up is Adult Contemporary with 10 entrants into the pool. Until then, I am Awaiting Your Reply.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Copernicus Rocks: The 2017 Platinum Vinyl Awards 2nd Qtr - Rap

We continue our announcements of the 2nd Quarter 2017 Pool Eligible Nominees for #PlatVnyl8. The multi-genre posts are behind us and we now move in ascending order with the single genre post, where the minimum bar is five entrants. Just coming in with 5 is Hip Hop and Rap. Let's get to it.

Hip Hop/Rap

Not a lot of established artists this quarter. Hollyn hasn't been around enough yet to be considered "established", but her vocal versatility seems to predict longevity. Next up is Dance. Until then, I am Awaiting Your Reply.

(There appears to be a problem at Amazon. At the current time I am unable to get to the detail page of any products in order to post affiliate links. They will be updated later.)

Friday, June 2, 2017

Copernicus Rocks: The 2017 Platinum Vinyl Awards 2nd Qtr - Children's Electronic Metal Remix

We come to the last of our Multi-genre posts for the 2nd Quarter Releases of 2017. We are behind schedule but making progress. From now on we will be handling one musical genre per post. But for now we have Children's Music, Remix, Hard Rock/Heavy Metal, and Electronic-Industrial.

Children's Music


 Hard Rock/Heavy Metal

Remix Album

That is the end of the multi-genre posts. It is all single genre from now on. First up is Hip Hop, which just cleared the bar. Until next time, I am Awaiting Your Reply.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Copernicus Rocks: The 2017 Platinum Vinyl Awards 2nd Qtr: Instrumental Alternative Gospel

I can see some heads exploding with this title. Sometimes I like to tweak my audience (He Left Jesus, He's in favor of an Alternative Gospel. It really is too easy to egg on the easily offended). This multi genre post is comprised of Instrumental Music, Alternative Rock, and Gospel and R&B. (Urban Gospel - You should worry if it was Southern Gospel). Anyway, let us get on with it.

Instrumental Music


Alternative Rock

Our third and final multi-genre post is next. 4 this time. Children's, Electronic, Metal, and Remix. Until then, I am Awaiting Your Reply.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Copernicus Rocks: The 2017 PlatInum Vinyl Awards 2nd Qtr: Live Folk Rock

Sticking up for a fellow pole here at Night Beat HQ. Not that I'm one of those Polish Pride people, I'm not. I mean most days I would just assume I would be any other ethnicity. (I love it when people think I'm Italian.) Hey, my Dad almost had me convinced that I was a Bosnian Crown Prince. (The official name of the country is Bosnia-HerzeGOVINA) (Caps added for Emphasis, Look at my name in the byline.) But upon further review I figure, since that part of the world is fairly warlike (anyone remember WWI?) even up to the present time, maybe it is not wise to assert Balkan Royal Lineage, no matter how flimsy.

Anyway, while Nicky doesn't really have anything to do with Music, (except that Copernicus Rocks sounds cool), it is a slight comment on some recent happenings in the world. Look it up. Now, on to our behind schedule quarterly wrap.

We begin our wrap with some multi-genre posts, where we handle the genres that had less than the threshold of 5 entries. This first one is a little tricky. Even though we have a category called Folk Rock, this is Live Album, Folk/Folk Rock, and Rock. It is the first of three multi genre posts. Let's get to it.

Folk/Folk Rock

Live Recorded Album

Rock Music

We are finally under way for our 2nd Quarter Wrap. Good it starts before the 3rd Quarter is finished. Until next time, I am Awaiting Your Reply.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

MVM Special Edition: #PlatVnyl7 Rock Video of The Year Nominees

We have reached the end of this portion of the Video of The Year Nominees. There is still the General Field portion of the awards to go, but that is yet to be narrowed down. Most likely we shall go to the other portions for a while. Those were completed first. Anyway, the nominees for Rock Video of The Year are: Back From The Dead by Skillet; Black Honey by Thrice; Rot by Lacey Sturm; Shake The Skies by FearlessBND; and Still Breathing by Veridia. Our last convenient playlist (for a while)
That does it. Until next time, I am Awaiting Your Reply.

Saturday, May 27, 2017

MVM Special Edition: #PlatVnyl7 Metal Video of The Year Nominees

Heavy Metal Video of The Year is the next to have its Nominees Announced for #PlatVnyl7. We have a very diverse group of Nominees this year. Let's get right to it. The Nominees are: Coma by Everything In Slow Motion; Her Halo by Teramaze; No Truth, No Sacrifice by For Today; Pride by Stryper; and Radio by Michael Sweet. Our Metal nominees once again in a convenient playlist.

Rock is all that is left. Until then, I am Awaiting Your Reply.

Friday, May 26, 2017

MVM Special Edition: #PlatVnyl7 Rap Video of The Year Nominees

We continue with our announcement of the #PlatVnyl7 genre based Video of The Year Nominees. We are progressing slower than I would like, but we are progressing nonetheless. The nominees are: Everyone Eats by Alert312; Go To Work by Benjah; Hey Girl by Nicole C. Mullen; I Just Wanna Know by NF; and Nothing But the Blood ft Deitrick Haddon by GuvnaB. One note. Sometimes you can get your way to the top by being somewhat disturbing. So a warning is in order for NF. It is not a happy video. The Playlist of the nominees.

Next up is metal. Until then, I am Awaiting Your Reply.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

MVM Special Edition: #PlatVnyl7 Electronic-Industrial Video of The Year Nominees

We continue our announcements for the nominees for the genre based video of the year awards in #PlatVnyl7, the current awards year. Up now is Electronic-Industrial Video of The Year, the somewhat harder edge to Dance. There are 5 videos once again: Blankets of Night by Hammock; Bonfires by The Quiet Science; Monster by Colours; Used To by Mutemath; and We're A Lot Like Trees by Paper Lights. The nominees in a nice playlist.

Rap and Hip Hop are next. Until then, I am Awaiting Your Reply.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

MVM Special Edition: #PlatVnyl7 Dance Video of the Year Nominees

We begin the Electronic Segment of the Video Award Nominations. First up is Dance-Synthpop Video of The Year. This category is a bit special as it has 6 nominees. Try as we did we couldn't get it down to 5. And some of them seemed to get more special as the judging went on. So we have 6. Usually Video of The Year explodes the category, so why not an individual genre. Let's get to it. The nominees for #PlatVnyl7 Dance-Synthpop Video of The Year are: Adventure by The Fifth Service (a band of Living Word Christian Center in Minneapolis, MN); Alive by Julianna Zobrist; Another Day by Alache; I Can't Quit by Capital Kings ft Reconcile; Love Like Fire by FearlessBND; and You Deserve Life by Kaimo K and Cathy Burton (via Bella Veleva). They will make you wanna move, wanna dance, and at least one may make you cry. Our nominee playlist.

Next up is the second of our all electronic genres, Electronic-Industrial. Until then I am Awaiting Your Reply.

Monday, May 22, 2017

MVM Special Edition: #PlatVnyl7 Pop Video of The Year Nominees

Welcome back to our announcements of the #PlatVnyl7 Nominees for the Genre-Based Video of The Year Awards. As we make our way through the represented genres we have arrived at Pop Music. We have a very nice mix this year. The nominees are: Breathtakingly Beautiful by The Rubyz; Color Explosion by Melissa Lischer; Hey Girl by Nicole C. Mullen; Meteorites by Lights; and Resonate by LoveCollide. Once again, we package everything up in a convenient little playlist.

The next genre up is Dance. Until then, I am Awaiting Your Reply.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

MVM Special Edition: #PlatVnyl7 Alternative Video of The Year Nominees

We are slowly continuing our announcements for the final nominees for this years genre based Video Of The Year Awards. We move on to Alternative Video of The Year. And sometimes with this category we mean both the musical genre and, well, if you watch the video you will know what I mean. To the nominees: Blankets of Night by Hammock; The Girl With The Tiger Eyes by Kevin Max; Monument by Mutemath; Take Me by The Ember Days; and Wow To The Deadness by Steve Taylor and The Danielson Foil. As always we package things nicely in a playlist. No errors this time.
That does it for Alternative Video. I will be off tomorrow. Until next time, I am Awaiting Your Reply.

Monday, May 15, 2017

MVM Special Corrected Edition: Gospel Video of The Year Nominees

Correction: Soon after the original post was made it was discovered that two of the original 5 nominees were actually from #PlatVnyl6, which was last years award. JJ Hairston and Armar'rae Hill have been purged from the playlist. However that does not absolve the original error. The requisite 40 lashes with a wet noodle has been decreed and administered.

The next group of video nominees which has been narrowed to the final 5 is Gospel Video. The video awards are still being narrowed in most categories. Let's get to it. The #PlatVnyl7 nominees are: Heaven's Angel by Alache ft Ron Kenoly, Jr; Promises ft Canton Jones by Trisha Alicia; Your Love by William Murphy; Sinners (Saved By Grace) by Deitrick Haddon and Big Boi; and Better by Hezekiah Walker. Once again we have packaged everything in a nice little playlist.

We have to get back to judging these videos, but there is plenty enough to keep us busy at Night Beat HQ, so until next time, I am Awaiting Your Reply.

Friday, May 12, 2017

Night Beat Rewind: April 2017

We are slowly climbing out of the hole we found ourselves in at the beginning of this year. As the saying goes, the first thing to do is to stop digging. I think we can say that we did that. After this we still have the Second Quarter Wrap to do, and Keep Up With the May Releases, and continue with the Nominations for #PlatVnyl7. You see what I mean? We begin our April wrap with the songs, and were there a boatload.

The Singles Scene

  • Deraj - Way Up 3.75 Emeralds
  • Jamie Grace - The Happy Song 4.75 Emeralds
  • I Am They - Crown Him 4.75 Emeralds
  • J-Heir - Reloaded 5 Emeralds
  • Gospel Lee - Reset 4.50 Emeralds
  • Derek Minor - Change The World Remixes feat Hollyn 4.75 Emeralds
  • Branan Murphy - All The Wrong Things (feat Koryn Hawthorne) 4.75 Emeralds
  • Natasha Owens - I am Loved 5 Emeralds
  • Sarah Reeves - Nowhere 4.75 Emeralds
  • Kristina Schell - Pharisee 4.75 Emeralds
  • Third Day - Revival 4.75 Emeralds
  • Tony Tillman - Granny's Couch 3.75 Emeralds
  • Transform DJ's - Never Alone 4.50 Emeralds 
Count them. That is 13 official singles (some are "EPs" with several versions of the same song, so the actual number is higher). It is enough for a Deluxe album, which is a nice segue  for our next group, albums which did not make the cut.

Missing The Mark

  • BRVNDONP and Mission - Barely Finished 3.50 Emeralds
  • Mike Clements - The Layover 43.50 Emeralds
  • Lawren - As You Pass, Go EP 3.75 Emeralds
  • Light The Way - Dude, Lame 3.75 Emeralds
  • Leslie McKee - Another Mile 3.75 Emeralds
  • Mogli The Iceburg - Tumultu 3.50 Emeralds  
  • Nothing Left - Destroy and Rebuild EP 3.75 Emeralds
  • Angie Rose - Sippin Coffee In The Bakery 3.50 Emeralds 
  • RVN Band - Dancing Season 3.25 Emeralds
  • Spence 4hire - Make Noise EP 3.50 Emeralds
  • Oscar Urbina - MP2: Darkness 3.75 Emeralds
  • Various - The Case For Christ (Songs Inspired By The Original Motion Picture) 3.75 Emeralds   
A full dozen in the rejected category. Of course when I say rejected, I mean from awards consideration. Most of the albums in this group are OK, just not great. On to the great, and that is an understatement this month.

Pure Platinum Perfection

  • Bethel Music - Starlight 5 Emeralds
  • Stu G and Friends - Beatitudes 5 Emeralds
  • Matty Mullins - Unstoppable 5 Emeralds
  • Kim Walker-Smith - On My Side 5 Emeralds
  • Various - Christian Dance Music Vol. 1 (Mixed by FreeG and Emasound) 5 Emeralds
An over 2-1 margin rejected/perfect is a great sign. One note, it takes more than saying "I want to dance" over and over again to make a dance album. RVN band could take a few lessons from FreeG and company. Stu G (Stuart David Garrard) is the former Guitarist for British Supergroup Delirious? Now on his own, he has assembled an excellent group of Friends (Audrey Assad, Amy Grant, All Sons and Daughters, and former bandmate Martin Smith). It is a must have album. Now, finally, to the albums which fall in between.    

Semi-Precious Metals

  • Lauren Alexandria - Victorious In Love EP 4.75 Emeralds
  • Anthem Lights - Hymns 4.50 Emeralds
  • Citylovemusic - Citylovemusic EP 4.75 Emeralds
  • The Classic Crime - How To Be Human 4.75 Emeralds
  • Covenant Worship - Sand and Stars 4.50 Emeralds
  • DJ Kirk - DJ Kirk 4.75 Emeralds
  • Freedom Worship - The Veil 4.50 Emeralds
  • Har Megiddo - Pressure 4.75 Emeralds
  • North Central University Worship Live - Always Remain 4.50 Emeralds
  • North Point Inside Out - Nothing Ordinary EP 4.75 Emeralds
  • Jeremi and Amy Richardson - Wind And Water 4.75 Emeralds
  • South of Royal - Deliverance and Doubt EP 4.75 Emeralds
  • Garett Serban - Anthem EP 4.50 Emeralds
  • Shane and Shane - The Worship Initiative, Volume 12 4.50 Emeralds
That is it. April is in the bag. Yahoo. Considering I had to re-rate the entire month after I lost my initial notes getting things done and posted within the first half of May is a minor miracle. I'll take it. No time to sit back and celebrate. There is still a lot of work to be done. Until next time, I am Awaiting Your Reply.