Haviah Mighty Is A Force For Change Within A Time That Needs It

In a time where the winds of major social change are shifting foundations across the world, strong voices are as needed as they have ever been. Toronto born rapper and 2019 Polaris Prize-winning Haviah Mighty is just one of the few who are using theirs to elevate those who don’t feel heard. Her first album, 13th Floor is ladened with both unbridled intelligence and confidence. Mighty’s lyrical prowess weaves in and out of topics such as racism, navigating self-esteem, and finding her strength as

'It's Happening, Penny Lane': Ten Years of Drake's 'Thank Me Later'

“Here’s the thing with Drake. The verdict is really still out. They’re sharing the torch with your now. They’re not passing it. Kanye [West], Jay [Z], and [Lil] Wayne are by no means passing it. What are you going to do with it?” – Sway – ‘Better Than Good Enough (2010) 170 million records sold. Four Grammy awards. Tied with Madonna for the most top ten hits on the Billboard 100. Since the 2010 release of his debut album, Thank Me Later, Drake has become one of the biggest artists of all time.

And The Band Plays On: Ten Years of Deftones' 'Diamond Eyes'

On February 23rd, 2010, Deftones released their single, ‘Rocket Skates’ for free on their website. Fans flocked to it and the site promptly crashed thereafter. The start of the song leads with an aggressive and crunchy guitar riff from guitarist Stephen Carpenter and bridges into the fury of drummer Abe Carpenter’s cymbals. I must have played the beginning part of the song over a hundred times. ‘Rocket Skates’ had the youthful exuberance and hunger of the band’s 1995 album, Adrenaline. They had

Can't Swim, 'When The Dust Settles,' and Adding New Life In Older Songs

Listening to your previously recorded songs can be a trip through a melody-like time machine. Maybe you had a fit of inspiration and wrote lyrics in a journal or the first piece of paper you could find. In some cases, there could be a life-defining moment, good or bad, that can spur our creativity into action. Bands throughout time have gone to make acoustic versions of their music and some even apply updates to them. While you can’t change the particular moment or event that birthed that partic

EDITORIAL: 'Leave It Alone', Mortality, and The Certainty of Love and Loss

I like to take random drives. Sometimes, it’s to wrangle a little bit of stress out of the washcloth of the day. Other times, it’s to flesh out some ideas or listen to new music. Traveling miles on an open road can be a different antidote from person to person. There’s almost a therapeutic hypnotism to it. On that drive, ‘Leave It Alone,’ the second single that Hayley Williams released from her Petals For Armor project came on shuffle. Have you ever listened to a song where the lyrics snap you

Enter Shikari Unlocks Possibilities Within An Unrecognizable World

If there is one way that you can describe British rock band, Enter Shikari throughout their 17-year history is that change is constant and almost welcomed. We are currently living in a time where the meaning of the word change seems to take on a new meaning daily. Sometimes minute by minute. Their seventh album, Nothing Is True & Everything Is Possible is a snapshot of all the plentiful possibilities that their music has explored. Sometimes pieces of music arrive at the right time to remind us o

With 'Christian,' All the World Is Allan Rayman's Stage

Since the last time I spoke to singer/songwriter Allan Rayman in the summer of 2019, he’s been hard at work on his fourth album, Christian. Like his show on the iteration of that tour, his new music takes on a life of its own. These songs often play out like rolls of film in a projector as a score to his own feature film. With artists, it’s been known that creativity in different mediums help one another. Rayman’s musical and cinematic mind meet together to make a unique mix all to himself. “I’m

August Burns Red, 'Guardians,' and the Strength of Togetherness

At the beginning of the song ‘Paramount,’ singer Jake Lurhs sings, “Are you walking through fire/You have a friend.” In current times where many of us are sheltered away from friends and loved ones due to the COV-19 pandemic, those lyrics hit closer to home. Throughout their 17 year history, metalcore band, August Burns Red has always been the aggressive version of musical therapy. At times, their music is celebratory. Sometimes, it’s contemplative. It all comes together for the greater good and

Meet The Blossom: The Metamorphosis of Lila Gold

As an artist, you want to make the right first impression. As the consumption of music grows with veracity by the day, you want to make something memorable. Something that catches people’s attention and stays there to peak their curiosity with each release. What if one day, you wake up and you decide that you need a change? It doesn’t have to be set off by a particular event or occurrence; you just get an urge to flip the switch. This is within trying to figure out who you are as an artist. Some

Enter the Unforgettable, Eccentric and Honest Life of ALMA

It’s about 8:35 PM at New York’s Brooklyn Steel and Finnish singer/songwriter ALMA is going into the second to last song in her set called ‘Loser.’ Opening for Tove Lo‘s Sunshine Kitty tour, it’s one of the high points of her set. Towards the end, the entire audience was moving and chanting the chorus with her. If you picture one of those scenes in a movie where the victor has their moment, this was it. It’s a spin on the word loser as well. The beauty of being an artist is making certain words

Frances Quinlan and the Tranquil Intelligence of 'Likewise'

Likewise, the solo album from Hop Along frontwoman Frances Quinlan plays like a work of art. The lyricism serves as intelligent, abstract pictures that you can interpret in different ways. The instrumentation provides color that can invoke different moods and emotions. Quinlan approaches these nine songs with inherent freedom like the stroke of her paintbrush – coloring in and outside the lines as you see fit. The song ‘Rare Thing’ was inspired by Quinlan watching her niece interact with the wor

Big Gigantic Wants You To 'Free Your Mind' and Feel Good About Yourself

Free Your Mind, the seventh album from electronic duo Big Gigantic is full of songs you want to start your day with. Like a playlist of ‘hype up music’ that athletes use to get in their collective zones, Big Gigantic made an album for you to celebrate yourself. In fact, it’s a celebration for saxophonist/producer Dominic Lalli and drummer Jeremy Salken. In 2008, Big Gigantic was started on a dream while both members were working as a pizza delivery man and a barista. Fast forward to now, where t

Blondage Undergoes Metamorphism and Rebirth With 'I Love Music'

Sometimes, the best thing to do is to take a break and recalibrate things. It’s hard to make art without living through experiences first and you’ll find that a project takes on a whole different meaning when you return. Blondage has undergone a metamorphosis. Once a duo that started in Copenhagen in 2017 is now the solo project of Pernille Smith-Sivertsen. I Love Music is a six-song EP that embodies Smith-Sivertsen’s new sense of freedom, both personally and creatively. Like a person rediscove

Best Coast Is Truly Feeling Okay For the First Time

The first lyrics from “For The First Time” say, “Trying really hard. I’m trying harder than I ever have before.” I played the self-titled track from Best Coast’s third album, California Nights repeatedly. It sounded like the perfect personification of the care-free feeling of the Golden State and almost a getaway. I also noticed something else. When singer-songwriter Bethany Cosentino described the album, she stated, “We related to the idea that things may look or sound fun and upbeat, but they

Derek Sanders revisits and retools songs he holds dear on 'My Rock and Roll Heart'

Do you remember the elation and joy when you heard a piece of music that you held close throughout your years? Maybe you picked up an instrument and tinkered with it in your bedroom until you got some semblance of a song down. Perhaps you even pretended to be the very musicians you idolized. Who hasn’t tried to do ACDC’s Angus Young’s trademark trot as they listened to ‘Back In Black?’ There are some songs that ignite a spark inside us. Songs that you don’t get tired of no matter how many times

Oh Wonder bring about their new sense of perspective on 'No One Else Can Wear Your Crown'

No One Else Can Wear Your Crown, the third album from Oh Wonder is a shared celebration of two people who have grown individually and together as a unit. The duo comprised of Anthony West and Josephine Vander Gucht experienced the pinnacle of their sophomore album, Ultralife, which saw the world tour venture into 34 different countries. As beautiful as it was adventurous, the album saw the fruition of much-deserved success and recognition for the band. In the non-stop motion of the music busine

Your Smith discovers her inner wild woman and redefines Caroline Smith

Throughout comic book history, alter-egos embody the part of people that they feel that the world can’t see. Whether it be to protect the ones they love or to blend in a societal scenery in order to fit within a sense of ‘normal.’ Diana Prince is just a mask for Wonder Woman, but within that, both senses of self need each other. Sometimes, they blend into together or teach each other things. Your Smith, a moniker created by singer/songwriter Caroline Smith explores her inner wild woman. A self

Liily injects their own combo of youthful exuberance and vigor in rock music

As their early 2019 City/Valley: Live from Brekfast documentary will show, Los Angeles rock band Liily is completely comfortable of being themselves. They are personable, they’re fun, and they have a raw energy that translates to both their live performances and recorded music equally. I Can Fool Anybody In This Town, Liily’s first EP displays creativity in song structure, tracks that will make you want to crowd surf, and some that have a contemplate energy to them. These particular tracks were

Madeon and the transformative, immersive world of 'Good Faith'

It’s the third day of Lollapalooza 2019. At around 10 PM CT time tucked away at the American Eagle state, Madeon, named Hugo Pierre Leclercq is about to unveil his new live show. You ever have something that you were painstakingly working on that you were eager to show the world? Even for the battle-tested Leclercq, nerves set in. “The last few weeks leading up to the premiere of the show were intense! The team and I had a real sense of community. The last few hours leading up to the first show

Sofi Tukker is redefining the definition of what it means to be the cool kids

In the conventional sense, we know Sofi Tukker as a German-American, highly musical and bombastic duo comprised of Sophie Hawley-Weld and Tucker Halpern. If you take a look at the video for their most recent single, ‘Purple Hat,’ the embodiment of Sofi Tukker is so much more. Fans are seen walking up to the venue with different colored hair and leopard print. People from all different backgrounds and orientations permeate the crowd. Sofi Tukker is a safe space for everyone involved to be their a
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