New Album by The Grand Undoing

Phantogram turns up the beat at NYC’s Pier 97

Phantogram turns up the beat at NYC’s Pier 97

It was a wet and wild night of dancing and debauchery as the NYC electro-pop duo known as Phantogram rocked the new JBL Live stage on the dock Pier 97 over the Hudson River on Manhattan’s Upper West side in the midst of a drenching rain storm on Saturday. It has been a crazy rocketing ride to the heights of commercial and artistic success for this still relatively new outfit of frontwoman and keyboardist Sarah Barthel and guitarist and frontman Josh Carter, who’s last and first full album Eyelid Movies was only released back in 2009, becoming such a huge success for it’s shadowy themes and inventively danceable tracks that some of their songs are still surprisingly played on some pop stations today, undoubtedly a teetering balancing act for a band that totes a much darker alternative cred in the modern music landscape. With an even astoundingly stronger LP Voices just released, they are back out on the road and played a big hometown show for their hardcore fans to dance the soggy night away to.

Phantogram at JBL Live Pier 97, NYC 9/13/14 Photos and review by Dean KeimContinue Reading

Weekly Album Review – Sinead O’Connor

Weekly Album Review – Sinead O’Connor

Sinead O’Connor

I’m Not Bossy, I’m the Boss

Nettwerk Records

I unwrapped Sinead O’Connor’s latest, I’m Not Bossy, I’m the Boss, popped the CD out of the case and saw “this album is dedicated to me” printed on the inside of the case, underneath where the CD belongs.  It quickly became clear, through a series of songs celebrating self and female empowerment, how appropriate this dedication was.

There was a variety of emotions experienced while listening to I’m Not Bossy, I’m the Boss.  The album began with some feel-good rock music and empowering anthems of righteousness and self-discovery.  The first song on the album, didn’t even sound like her at first.  Her voice came off a little raspy, but considering many famous female musicians possess this same quality, perhaps this was what she was going for.  She implemented this like a true professional, of course.

Moving through the twelve track album, O’Connor’s emotions intensify and transform from easy going rock and roll to raw, angry emotion.  The mood shifts mid-album with the song, “The Voice of my Doctor.”  The old familiar sounds of 90s alternative rock are apparent.  The beautiful mix of potent and dominant rock, as well as the prominence of optimistic and encouraging thoughts and ideas is preserved on I’m Not Bossy, I’m the Boss.  The lyrics are deep and profound, especially in, “8 Good Reasons,” which I feel is the most influential song on the album.

The songs themselves are simple, with choruses and verses, and not much in the way of instrumental solos.  Instrumentals are predominantly piano and guitar, but even some of the most talented musicians can’t hold a candle to the haunting melodies of Sinead O’Connor’s voice.  Even her whispers are piercing.   The album concludes with a wistful, vocal and piano number.

This tasteful dish of untethered emotion, with a side of girl power, is everything a 90s girl could ever want in an album.  It took me back to a time in my own life, filled with angst, MTV and uncomfortable plastic shoes called Jellies.

Sinead O’Connor is currently wrapping up a tour in Europe, but will be bringing it over to the United States and Canada this coming October.  For more information, music videos, and tour dates, check out her website at http://www.sineadoconnor.com/