Solution .45-Nightmare in the Waking State Part II  ©2016 AFM Records
​We took a listen to the first part of the two 'Nightmare in the Waking State' albums a bit back and now the band are offering up part II. The album was recorded at the same time as the first album and you can feel the continuity. This album like the previous has the same elements. The band have incorporated the same melodic tones with some very intense music. Dual vocal styles and quite a bit of atmosphere throughout. If you liked the first part, there is no doubt that you will like the second part as well. This band's music is geared to a those who like it quite a bit heavier than the mainstream. 
The Dead Daisies-Make Some Noise    ©2016 SPV Records 
​This band features a star studded lineup that includes John Corabi, Doug Aldrich, Marco Mendoza, Brian Tichy, and David Lowy. Musically, this is very good stuff. Pretty much what I expected from a Corabi fronted band. The songs are well crafted and have a solid raw rock feel to them. Just about anything on this album would work on rock radio in my opinion. Most of the songs are pretty memorable and will stick with you long after your listen is over. The whole approach to writing and delivery has a great balance to it with the songs carrying the day.  Very good chemistry in this band!
Tarja-The Shadow Self   ©2016 earMusic
​We looked at the prequel album 'The Brightest Void' and now we get the main album 'The Shadow Self' from Tarja who most will remember for her tenure with Nightwish. I think Tarja has been paving a very solid solo path and has really been offering a lot of substance as she progresses through her career. This latest album has quite a few elements to it including Classical, Metal, and even a touch of Funk. We really liked the prequel album and feel that this ratchets things up another notch higher. Nothing to really dislike about this album. Very solid outing once again as expected!
Skillet-Unleashed   ©2016 Atlantic Records
​I had heard some of what this band offered previously, but hadn't really dug in much. I happened to catch the track 'Feel Invincible' and was hooked instantly. Very memorable choruses and catchy grooves all over this album. The music is very consistent. Every band seems to have that one album that takes them to a much higher plateau. To me, this is that album. It's very satisfying start to finish and you can feel the confidence the band had going into this album. If you haven't checked them out, check out the video for 'Feel Invincible' and I'm feeling you'll be hooked just as we were. Excellent release! 
Jackyl-Rowyco   ©2016 Mighty Loud Entertainment
​It seems that folks go into each Jackyl album hoping for a return to the first two albums. Bands always evolve, sometimes in a positive way and sometimes not. 'Rowyco' stands on its own merits. It's not groundbreaking by any means, but it's a helluva lot of fun, and quite honestly, that's what I have always looked for in this bands albums. There is the usual familiarity here, especially on tracks like 'Rally'. Here's my advice. Go into this one looking for an enjoyable Jackyl experience. You will probably enjoy what you get and quite honestly, I love this band and am happy they are still around!