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To celebrate a return to Red Label Reviews, I decided to launch a Christmas Special. I was sat at home (having returned for the Christmas holidays), and was wondering for about an hour "what could I do to make a Christmas special". Then it hit me! As I have been inactive over the past few months I decided to create several mini-reviews of multiple artists. For the next 3 days, 6 artists will have 2 tracks reviewed every day. So let's get this festive show on the road!
The Merrions formed at a school in January 2013. Since then, they have been gigging and spent summer recording their E.P., whilst playing many gigs around Leeds that have been praised for their energetic live show. Their music has been described as "Psychedelically mixed with punk". The band only submitted one track to me which can be found below.
'Down the Woods'
This began with a great guitar riff. The guitarist had a rather unique tone, and helped to established the clear Punk/Rock feel of the song. I particularly liked how instruments were added one at a time, this created a built to the introduction, which I admired. I also liked the inclusion of a second guitar which created a second riff. This was a fantastic addition. I really liked the vocals of this song, again being quite unique. The vocal line (And this is not an insult!), was quite monotonous, almost like music from the hippie culture (much like their influences). I really liked this as a feature like this is rarely seen in a modern music, so it was a nice addition to hear something quite "retro". I also liked the breakdown in this song, which began with a very dissonant high pitched guitar note; this sounded almost like amplifier feedback. Nevertheless, it worked very well and helped prepare for the shredding guitar solo that followed this section. This was a fantastic feature of the song. All in all, I really liked this song, primarily due to the retro feel it had. I was very happy to see music like this going against the standard "pop"ish feel of modern music in the current market.
It's certainly been a long time since I last published a review, for which I can only apologise for! It's been a very busy time at University. But regardless, let's get back in action with this review of Steven Ramone. He's a songwriter and singer for Steven Ramone & the Liberatti´s. His debut album entitled The HomemadeSessions was released on December 6 2012 by Aries Music Entertaiment Inc., which has been described as 'hard to put into words, this album has a little beat of everything and certainly speaks for itself!' I had the pleasure of reviewing a few tracks from this album.
'I've been there before'
I really liked the introduction to this song; it was incredible bluesy in terms of both instrumentation and the use of melodic licks on the guitar and piano. The underlying guitar riff can be regarded as a stock rhythmic feature of blues songs, so it was good to see this included and adding to the vibe of the song. I really liked the vocals of the song. Steven had quite a unique tone to his voice; quite raw and original. I felt this added to the Blues vibe of the song, almost like early Blues songs from the 1920s! Another good feature was the addition of vocal harmonies in the second verse, creating some variation. The guitar solo in this song sounded fantastic. Again, it was very bluesy and kept this vibe going. I especially liked how the piano paralleled material from this solo in a rhythmic sense; I really liked this as I highlights how the musicians are listening to each other when playing.