Category Archives: Music Reviews

Review of albums and singles. CD, LP, and MP3.

“Fear Inoculum” (Single) by Tool

Artist: Tool
Title: “Fear Inoculum” (Single)
Label: RCA Records
Release Date: 8/7/2019
Genre: Alt-Metal
Rating: 4.5/5

While we are only about 23 days away from the release of the first Tool album in 13 years, the music world was buzzing about the band based on their back catalog being made available on the popular digital platforms of the day for the first time ever. I discussed that monumental news HERE in case you missed it and this morning the world at large got their first taste of new Tool music with the single from the “Fear Inoculum” album and its title track. The number runs a good 10 plus minutes long and I’ll try to make some sense of it all for those fans of the band who are reading my narratives.
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“Back To Life” (Single) by Paralandra

Artist: Paralandra
Title: “Back To Life” (Single)
Label: Legend Recordings
Release Date: 2018
Genre: Hard Rock/Alt-Rock
Rating: 4/5

While the band has been around for a couple of years by my research, my first knowledge came of them when I noticed they would be opening for the famous Yngwie Malmsteen at his NYC show. The plan was to catch his gig and lend some love to the supporting act which is my common practice but when my plans changed neither of those options would happen which brings me here. I’d been spinning the bands 2018 single “Back To Life” which is also going to be a part of their upcoming “Ascension” EP in preparation for the show and since I liked the number, decided to throw together a quick single review for the readership. Let’s go.
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“Stairway To Nick John” (Single) by Mastodon

Artist: Mastodon
Title: “Stairway To Nick John” (Single)
Label: Warner Music Group
Release Date: 5/17/2019
Genre: Hard Rock
Rating: 5/5

Back in September 2018, Mastodon longtime manager Nick John lost his battle with pancreatic cancer and during his funeral the band paid a tribute to their friend by covering the Led Zeppelin classic “Stairway To Heaven”. The track was sung by the band’s drummer Brann Dailor and the recording of this happening made its way around the Internet before being professionally recorded and released for this years Record Store Day. Now having listened to their stunning version of the track which is called “Stairway To Nick John” in his honor, I just wanted to throw together some thoughts about their take on such a classic number during such a terrible time.
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“KISSWORLD – The Best Of KISS” by KISS

Artist: KISS
Title: “KISSWORLD – The Best Of KISS”
Label: Universal Music
Release Date: 1/26/2019
Genre: Hard Rock
Rating: 4/5

Lo and behold my friends, there is yet another “Greatest Hits” compilation for the legendary masked men of Hard Rock and Heavy Metal – The Hottest Band In The World KISS!!!! This one is entitled “KISSWORLD – The Best Of KISS” and it hit the streets in late January and I’ve finally got a copy of this in my hands. As a lifer in terms of KISS releases, I will be most likely purchasing another 50 hits packages if they come out and my main interest in this one was to see what sort of booklet might be included in the packaging. I’ll return to that topic later on but first let’s take a quick glance at the “20” tracks included on the release. From top to bottom there doesn’t seem to be a single track of “filler” and instead are all go to songs in the now massive KISS catalog. I found it interesting that the release began with “Crazy Crazy Nights” because when that song first hit I was aghast but now so many years later have found it to be enjoyable Rock and Roll.

There aren’t any omissions in terms of the necessary staples as “Love Gun”, “Detroit Rock City”, “Shout It Out Loud” and of course the seminal “Rock and Roll All Nite” are included. The latter one being the original studio track as opposed to the one that we often find on such a release that hails from the essential “Alive” album. There are NO live tracks on this compilation. The post-makeup years are well represented with the most notable tracks from the era such as “Tears Are Falling”, “Lick It Up” and “Heaven’s On Fire” in addition to the album opening “Crazy Crazy Nights”. I think I would have liked to see “Who Wants To Be Lonely” here but it is not.
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“Auld Lang Syne” (Single) by Diamante

Artist: Diamante
Title: “Auld Lang Syne” (Single)
Label: Better Noise Records
Release Date: 12/7/2018
Genre: Hard Rock/Holiday
Rating: 4.5/5

A few months ago, I gave my first thoughts about Hard Rock singer Diamante when I did a summary on her single “Haunted”. It was in anticipation of checking her out live during her appearance on a tour but sometimes the best laid plans do not work out. Though I’d also been meaning to reviewing her full debut on Better Noise Records, time unfortunately escaped me which brings us to now, the last day of December on the last day of 2018 in music to formulate some notions on her cover of the traditional classic “Auld Lang Syne”. Though she released this single a couple of weeks ago, I decided that there was no better way to end a fantastic year of music and media than by discussing it today so let’s chat about it shall we.
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