#MusicReview: Martin’s In The Blink of A Life brings something new to the table.

Growing up, I was drawn to the song “Crazy” by Patsy Cline. I didn’t know why then (now I’m aware that her vocals on that piece were raw, honest, and carried you on an emotional journey despite the track being less than two minutes in length), my dad and I would just bond over how much that song spoke to us.

In much the same way, April Martin’s music speaks in a similar way: her vocals carry you on an emotional journey of where her heart has been, and her music reminds all who listen to it of greats like Loretta Lynn, Rosanne Cash, and Gillian Welch.

Click the image below to hear In The Blink of Life in it’s entirety.

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April Martin started her professional life as a Ph.D. in clinical
psychology and maintains a successful practice in New York City. Though
she made up songs in her head from as far back as she can remember, she
didn’t begin writing them down until later in life.

Her first album, Pennies in a Jar, was released in 2010, and garnered
more than 10,000 fans worldwide on Internet radio. This album, In the
Blink of a Life, takes her exploration of the human heart – which is
done with tenderness, humor, and passion, to greater depths of
reflection and maturity.

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On her work on this album and as a musician as a whole, April explains:

“When I was a child in the 1950’s you could
get a song sheet for 5 cents at the corner candy store with the lyrics
to tunes on the Hit Parade. My dad, whose natural tenor voice was always
bursting into song,  would give me a nickel each week when the new ones
came out. Together we learned songs like “Secret Love”,  “How Much Is
That Doggie in the Window?”, and “Oh My Pa-Pa.” These were some of the
happiest moments of my childhood.

Those songs were my constant companions. I overheard my first grade
teacher complaining, “If that child doesn’t stop humming I will go
crazy.” I hummed the tunes and memorized the words, which spoke life’s
truths to my little heart. I knew for a fact that love is a many
splendored thing, that Davey Crockett was king of the wild frontier, and
that when you load sixteen tons all you get is another day older and
deeper in debt. My musical tastes may have broadened, but to this day
I’m drawn to the simplicity of a song that makes me laugh or cry or
wonder about something that rings deeply true.

Songwriting came to me half a lifetime later, after spending decades
immersed in the human condition as a psychologist and a parent of three
children. To my surprise I found myself humming tunes I’d never heard
before and giving voice to things that welled up in me.

With every song I write I’m grateful to the people who trust me with
their vulnerabilities and joys, to my children who made me understand
love as never before, and to my dad who brought those wonderful songs
into my young world.”april-martin-cityscape-no-2

Song By Song review:

One Breath: This song speaks volumes about something we all forget and we need a major reminder of in today’s world. We only have now. We must take life one breath at a time. Favorite line “It’s all about now, the why, and the how. It’s all about love.”

Heart Break Doesn’t Come: My favorite song off the album solely because of it’s musicality about all hell breaking lose but the speaker saying blatantly “heart break doesn’t come from loving me.” The guitar breakdown adds a nice musicality to the track.

My Rock and My Rain: This song boasts lyrics that are practically songwriter perfection. A perfect to dedicate to your upcoming valentine.

While I’m Waiting: This song could have stayed an instrumental for it’s suspenseful musicality through the use of a rain-stick and various other percussion instruments.

Looking Back: Perfect song to play at someone’s memorial, it’s a perfect combination of soft music, lyrics that are tears of memory, and soft vocals.

Everday I Love You More: A beautiful love song with nice percussive musicality

Would You Let Me In: The flute adds a great musicality to this song about falling in love with someone who is grieving.

Sara’s Lullaby: Taking on the sound of Spanish folk music, this is a both a pleasure to listen to and a little bit of a style change for the artist.

All I’ve Got: Vocally, Martin reminds me of Karen Carpenter a little bit on this track folky love song.

One Part Truth, The Party’s In Full Swing, Life is Good, and Praise The Morning all boast of Martin’s country style as a singer-songwriter, both lyrically and musically.

In The Blink of A Life

April Martin

Rating: Four out of five cookies


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#MusicReview: Loaded with Potential; Loaded Gun EP


Originally hailing from Toronto, Crystyna Marie sings with a powder keg
voice over a cocktail of grungy blues and pop. The classically trained
Canadian-born singer has supported Ontario acts and been featured as a
demo singer on indie labels from as young as 18 years old.

Marie has taken first place in various categories in the Kiwanis Music
Festival 2 years in a row. She’s taken lead roles in local community
plays; West Side Story as Maria and Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz. Over
the years, she has racked up a long list of smaller roles in music
videos, television and was also the lead singer in an LA founded pop
group called Greencat. Writing and releasing her own music, with her own
unique voice, however, is where her true passion lies.

Believing the classics are just as essential as modern favorites, she
finds musical inspiration in everyone from Janis Joplin, Ottis Redding
and Etta James to Selena and Christina Aguilera.

Although Crystyna has been represented by several independent labels
over the years, she decided that in order to shape the sound she wanted,
releasing music on her own was absolutely necessary. Her first solo
single, “Loaded Gun”, is proof that this was the right choice, revealing
the first taste of Marie’s gritty take on the blues.

The EP was released on Feb 29, 2016.

Song by Song Review

“Loaded Gun”: Starting out with a staccato drum beat and bluesy guitar chords, this track with vocals that remind me of Miley Cyrus (at her best) discusses love that has you all over the place emotionally.

“Down The Road”: True to form bluesy rock with gut wrenching raw emotive vocals, this song has the total potential to be as powerful as a Jonny Lang song.

“No More”: Totally reminds me of a pop rock song from bands such as 3 Door Down, Marie sings about feeling so numb after someone breaks your heart. Favorite lyric: “No more I feel of you.”

“The Tower”: The musicality of this track is by far my favorite, as well as the lyricism and songwriting.  Favorite lyric: “There will be no breaking down only breaking through.” Strength penned so succinctly.

Overall, if you haven’t downloaded Marie’s Loaded Gun EP your Itunes library is probably not living up to it’s potential and is definitely lacking for some of what Chrystyna Marie brings to the table.

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#MusicReview: Waiting For Sunday is on to something with ‘The Windsor Effect’

I’m still trying to figure out the mystery behind the Windsor Effect, new album from Canadian rock quartet, Waiting For Sunday. Affiliates

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A jazz-trained bassist, classic rock lead guitarist, industrial rock
drummer, and indie-rock vocalist and you have Waiting For Sunday – a
unique blend of musical sensibilities with widespread appeal. Comprised
of producer and drummer Colin Everall, singer Dan Hudson, bassist Mircea
Tracke and lead guitarist Matt Gauld, Vancouver, Canada-based Waiting
For Sunday has recently released The Windsor Effect, a 12-track
multi-faceted album of diverse themes and styles. This new album is the
follow-up to their 2011 debut, “The Courage, The Strength, The Wisdom &

You can follow along with my song by song review by listening here.

Song by Song Review

“Pebbles Become Stone”: This a bit of a let down in terms of an album opener. I expected more from this track but found myself feeling all-around disappointed. Maybe there is something about this track that I am missing. The only great part is the guitar solo during the breakdown.

“Last Call For Safety”: I like this track from the beginning with the dramatic guitar chords that bring the track to life (almost gives life to me after the first track), it reminds me a little of a Cute is What We Aim For track without the extra bells and whistles. My favorite lyric: “We have run the river dry.”

“The Love is Gone”: 

This track is a bit of a conundrum to me lyrically but I like the haunting musicality it gives off.

“Tell Me That You’re Mine”: With soft guitar chords that remind me of a mix of a Taylor Swift love song and a Secondhand Serenade song, this track has to be my favorite because of it’s romantic feel.

“Long Live The Strong”: With a classic rock feel, this is another one of my favorites. My favorite lyric, “Nice to meet you but where the hell did we go wrong?”

“Wanted”:”Well there’s truth to the matter, with love comes sacrifice.” I really like the story this track is telling. One of love, rejection, and betrayal, all with music.

“Borderline”: The piano is a surprising solace for this track’s beginning. This track almost communicates a sense of yearning for whatever it is talking about.

“Chasing Youth”: The electric guitar really gives this an old-school rock feel, and reminds me something I would hear in a biker bar. My favorite lyric: “So I wonder why, the grass is always greener on the other side.” This track overall is another favorite of mine.

“Seasons Are Dire” The soft guitar chords along with the ballad like vocals, this song reminds me a little of a new spin of Death Cab For Cutie’s Follow Me Into The Dark.

“Details” Minor dramatic guitar chords and a heartbeat drum backing the vocals of what appears to be a track about a love that fell apart.

“Oh, The Night”: Probably my favorite track on the entire album because it has the makings of being a radio single that blows up fasts on the charts. I await big things from this track all by itself.

“Scripture”: Not really sure if I like this track at all and once again, I feel a bit let down by the overall musicality and lyrics. Then again, you be the judge as everyone has different tastes when it comes to music.

If this album spoke to you, and you want to know all of Waiting For Sunday’s whereabouts please make sure to check out their site, follow them on Twitter, and Like them on Facebook.

#MusicReview: Tumbler’s new album Come To The Edge will have you “on the edge” of your seat

Alternative rock is one of my favorite genres so when this band came up in my inbox, I jumped at the chance to review it. You could say alternative rock was the soundtrack of my high school years. It’s the music that gives rhythm and melody to every day emotions and situations but still instills hope with guitar riffs and catchy drum beats but it’s not sugar coated or melancholy like pop music, nor American like country music. Much like pop music, alternative/folk rock music is a worldwide genre that grips you when you least expect it to.

Hailing from Epsom, England, this band is made up of members Harry Grace (vocals and guitar), Richard Grace (vocals and guitar), and Dave Needham (guitar, keyboard, backing vocals). Tumbler was born two years ago, when a lifetime of family music and weekend kitchen concerts turned into something more. Harry started taking the music seriously. Dave happened along. A whole bunch of songs left the kitchen, took flight and turned into an album. They called it‘You Said’.Reaction was gratifyingly positive. In a world that already has over 37 million songs, it turns out there was room for a few more. In honesty though it didn’t change anything, we’d already started on a second album before the first was released.The thing is, you can’t help learning. Through the course of making ‘You Said’ they discovered some useful stuff and developed some new ideas. Out of all the material available they  began to understand what songs suited Tumbler best. Meantime Harry was growing as a writer and performer.

“Don’t Take Much”:  Musically, Tumblr as a band sounds like a mix between MGMT and The Beatles, and this song really showcases that. The chorus for this song is beautifully written:

“Trust and let it go/ oh baby, love’s stronger than you and I know.”

“Falling”: A song about falling in love and the start of a new found feeling between you and the other person. Harry wrote it and explains here that it starts out with the vocals because it’s exclamatory due to pent up emotions that he felt the need to express with this song. It’s one of my favorites off the album because I love the strongly worded lyrics used throughout.

“Nothing To Hold You”: Musically, it starts out sounding like a Patsy Cline song but contains amazing mixtures of sing-along worthy lyrics and folk musicality.

“Sweetest Thing”: This song has a lighthearted musicality that reminds me of a song you would hear in an opening scene of a romantic comedy.

“Week”: Another one of my favorites off the album because it’s just such a catchy, heavy guitar laden melody with a chorus that is lyrically sound: “But I/ I won’t run/ from this house we built from stone.”

“Winter Cold Heart”: Totally badass musicality with this track because of the mystique of the chimes used and how it really creates a wintry atmosphere. Very specific imagery creates a story that comes to life in this track, one that you will have on repeat.

“Diamond in a Drawer”: The sound of the chisel on this track against heavy minor guitar chords really sets this track’s musicality apart and I find it to be another one of my favorites off the album.

“Joanne”: This song is forty years old and has been passed down through Richard’s musical career. Dave added a nice piano track to the vocals that creates a melodic mystique to this ballad for the mysterious woman named Joanne.

“In Safe Hands”: Normally, alternative rock has a sort of “woe is me” statement underneath it but this melodic guitar heavy track is hopeful, and gives the listener positive vibes. It creates a peaceful atmosphere and definitely could be nicknamed the “traveler’s song.”

“Dial”: An acoustic guitar and melancholy vocals greet the listener and pull at your heartstrings a bit with this track about waiting for a call that never comes.

“Freedom The Cry”: The bomb alarm create a chaotic atmosphere with this political commentary track about what freedom means in today’s world whether you live overseas or in the United States.

To keep up to date on all things Tumblr as well as listen to their debut album, You Said, visit them at the links below:





Bitter’s Kiss “Love Won’t Make You Cry” is a stand-out in vulnerability

Pop music is probably the music that you can say keeps my blood pumping when I’m searching for meaning in life. It’s the music that contains elements of hope, usually is brighter in tone than other genres, and most of the time makes you want to dance. When given the chance to review Bitter’s Kiss’s EP I jumped at the chance since I’m an avid listener and huge fan of most pop music including indie pop.


Bitter’s Kiss is primarily a vehicle for singer/songwriter Chloe Baker to showcase her talents.  Chloe grew up in a home filled with music, with a father who maintained a studio, a guitar collection and a band, and has been active in musical theater for years.  Chloe currently attends High Tech, an arts academy in North Bergen, NJ.  Chloe has been serious about writing music for around a year, and has worked with her father to record and produce her music over the past several months.  The reception has been incredibly positive, with a lot of encouragement to take her efforts to the next level.  Chloe uses songwriting as a diary and a means of exploring her world.  The magic of Bakers work though is that despite this sad and often strange world she still manages to find hope.

Released April 15, 2016, “Love Won’t Make You Cry” is Bitter’s Kiss’s debut EP.

Song by Song Review

“Bitter’s Kiss”: With a strong guitar introduction, we find in this track a story told of having to move on after loving someone so deeply, and that awkward place mentally and emotionally when you both love and hate that person. My favorite line: “You’re the devil and the angel on my shoulder/you’re my rock and my boulder” Baker’s vocals on this track really add a whole emotive element.

“Waste of It All”: With an old school  feel, this track tells the story of being the stronger one in a toxic broken relationship, who is the person who keeps the relationship going despite the waste that it is. “Somehow I can’t be loved” is my favorite line in the breakdown because it showcases both a strong vocal performance but also creates a deep vulnerability for the speaker of the track.

Love Won’t Make You Cry“: A hope filled track about love and how it’s really supposed to look like.   I like the softness of both the vocals and instruments, musically painting a vivid image of love being something that will embrace you instead of defeat you. It’s one of my favorites off the album for that reason alone.

“No One Will”: With the sound of a Carpenter’s song, I like how it’s a third party observer story that shows how this person is watching other couple’s hold hands knowing full well that their is a certain fragility to letting yourself fall in love with someone. Baker’s vocals have a certain haunting quality that emotes a sensitive, dreary side.

“The Rope”: When I first heard this track, I felt that it was mocking people who have faith but the background of this song explains the beauty behind the madness. Baker’s cousin was deeply religious but ended up committing suicide. A rain backtrack is heard in the introduction followed with minor chords on the guitar, it showcases the importance of staying true to one’s identity and finding something personally significant to make life

“Lovin’ Life”: Despite the dark world we live in, it is possible to choose happiness every day, and I like the positive vibes this song promotes. It has electronic pop influences that make the track cheery.

“Already Gone” Right away, I was intrigued by the overall musicality of this track, struck by how not only does it have an enticing rhythm but the lyrics and vocals emote a sense of hope.

“Too Far Too Fast”:  A reaction to watching her older sister go off to college and noting how quickly time passes. One of my favorites because it emotes many life lesson’s she hopes her sister takes with her on her way off to college and is lyrically strong. It ends the album on a high note.

You can keep track with all Bitter’s Kiss new music via their website and Facebook page.

Deister’s album Spines of The Heart is a brooding reflection

I only thought there was classic rock and alternative rock until I listened to Bryan Deister’s debut indie album, Spines of the Heart. 11700565_1170353296323286_7402019110996327945_o.jpg

Bryan Deister  is  trained in classical, jazz, blues,  progressive rock, and modern music, he writes, sings, and composes all of his music including the chorals, polyrhythms and unique instrumentation such as funk banjo and rice percussion. Along with Nirvana, Weezer, Voltaire, My Bloody Valentine, Bryan decided that dark, thoughtful, well written music is what he really wanted to be a part of. This led to him take writing music seriously and venturing off (from classical and jazz) into all of the 20th century style
composition techniques from John Cage to John Lennon. Bryan is working hard at Berklee College of Music, keeping up his  Writing and Composition Scholarship. Bryan says “Hopefully after Berklee I will continue to improve in all facets and be able to write interesting music without starving.” His latest 2 Disc Album of 23 songs came out 12/22/2015 and is entitled  “Spines of the Heart”.

Song By Song Review

Listen along

“All That I Have”: Right away, I was gripped by the electronic rhythm of this track, the raspy whisperings of Bryan’s vocals and felt like this track could be easily labeled a banger in the genre of electronic rock. It really starts the album on a high note.

“Responding Well”: With an overall haunting feel and musicality to this track with a long instrumental introduction, any listener to this track would respond and receive it well.

“In Her Eyes”: With a constant hum of a vocal vibrato against a war drum, this song talks about melting “in her eyes” because they tell a vivacious story because of all the things her eyes hint at and can be visually seen through them. It’s almost magical realism meets music.

“Have You”: Sticking to the genre, the softness of the musicality gives it the appeal of a rock ballad.

“Silent Screams”: My favorite off the album because of the use of rice percussion and the rhythm  of the track, followed by a seriously rad guitar ripping solo in the breakdown of the track, it just has the sound of a song that would be featured in a superhero vs super villain fight scene in a Marvel movie.

“Approaching”: A haunting piano ballad that creeped me out in the best way when I first listened to it, it discusses the end of an era, or of the world as we know it. Bryan’s vocals really add to the overall musicality of the track making it yet another experimental rock banger in my book.

“Brighter Dawn”: Almost sounds like a Beatles “Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds” style track, it’s a cry out to God with elements of sensing human weakness and needing God’s supernatural strength to carry you through.

“Into The Sky” Right away when I heard this track, I sensed great musical potential from it. With musicality that likens to fellow rock band MGMT, I like the vocal layering of this track. No surprise that this track is currently charting at #148 nationally and #5 on the indie charts. It is mind-bendingly beautiful.

“Gone”: Too haunting for my tastes, this track hints at suicide after a heart-wrenching break up or a loss.

“Come”:Haunting much like a ghost singing to you in a dark train or subway tunnel, the minor piano chords will stick with you long after you listen to this track.

“Today”: Definitely can be likened to a Kurt Cobain/Nirvana song, it’s incredibly haunting both musically and vocally.

“Nobody’s Angel”: With a pressurized air sound in the introduction against a minor piano track, it leads into a John Lennon style vocal performance with rhythms that could be likened to a Panic At The Disco track.

“Wait”: This experimental rock track is too demonic-sounding for my tastes.

“Emily”: I like the electronic rhythms of this track as well as the vocals as he sings about a girl named Emily.

“What You Want”: “Stand up, stand up and take it.” The lyrics declare from the beginning of the track and with chords that mirror church bells, it’s a song that fights to the finish.

“The Bread”: When I first saw the title of the track, I thought how weird? After listening to the track, I see that this track has religious elements and is another prayer to God, based off the “Our Father.”

“Always Further”: A clock ticking and drums introduce this track while Bryan’s vocal vibrato  haunts the listener.

“Seven Eight”: A follow-up to “Silent Screams,” it experimentally and musically hints at the joke that “seven ate nine.”

“Nothing More” A brooding organ style piano ballad that is nothing more for the listener than a track worth listening to.

“Sure”: I love the rhythm of this track and war drum musicality with echoes of vocal vibrato.

“Vacant Eyes”: Electronic rhythms and a heartbeat backtrack with lyrical themes that discuss loving someone so much you would die for them.

“Apart of Me”: With a metal-sounding introduction, it almost sounds like this ack could have been featured in the Mad Max film. And although it becomes a very strange piano ballad, it could still have given a certain experimental element to a movie that thinks outside the box. The track is thirteen minutes and 29 seconds long and contains a mix of the albums different musical elements all in one final track.

Check it out at http://www.bryandeister.com and stay in touch with all new releases from this artist by liking his Facebook page.