todd rundgren

 

In an ideal musical encyclopedia, it becomes an impossible task to place Todd Rundgren in a specific category. Multi-instrumentalist, producer, singer/songwriter, sound engineer and, most of all, a great music experimentalist, the Pennsylvania-born artist has written among the most inspired musical pages of the last half a century of music history.

Recorded at The Ridgefield Playhouse in Ridgefield, Pennsylvania, Rundgren's new live album is the one that better paints the most faithful portrait of one of the most original artists ever. This live concert, recorded at the end of 2015, incorporates the highlights and, at the same time, some of the less known songs of Rundgren's incredible career.

Despite a slightly shaky start on I Saw The LIght, one of his most famous hits, Todd Rundgren and his band lead the crowd through a whirling and enthralling setlist, combining the most glorious moments of Rundgren's solo career with many songs not played by the American artist for a very long time, belonging to his 70's music projects Nazz and the prog-rock orientated one called Utopia.

What really impresses about Rundgren's performance on this live album is, at this time of his life and career, the capacity of combining a hugely inspired and eclectic songwritng with a truly unique interpretation of his songs, through his voice able to carve a song in the same way a sculptor does with one of his most precious works.

It's incredibly difficult to pick highlights in a stellar performance like this that combine Philadelphia Soul, Funk, Rock and even Ska. Thankfully, Rundgren dig so much deep in his vast music catalogue and gifts the Ridgefield crowd with a stellar version of Lost Horizon, a splendid soul tune from the 1985's album A Cappella. Rundgren's interpretation is certainly one of the best he has ever done in a live format of this song. Buffalo Grass, Kiddie Boy and Drive are epic rock and roll music lashes, in which Rundgren reminds us once again how talented he is as well as a guitar player.

Bang The Drum All Day, another of Rundgren's pinnacles of his great music career, is pure joy to listen to, with that catchy ska tempo that brings the whole Ridgefield Playhouse to a total  crowd partecipation. Love Science, available only on the DVD that comes together with the CD, transports the crowd in a funk universe through a stunning rendition of a song that shows once again Rundgren's great ability to evolve himself as a musician. Ability combined with an incredible understanding of music at 360 degrees that very few artists in their lifetime have been able to match.

An Evening With Todd Rundgren - Live At The Ridgefield is certainly, among the many live albums that Rundgren has released in his fabulous career, the one that shows the most the talent, artistic honesty and versatility of this American artist. At the respectable age of 68, his energy and passion for music are highly infectious and admirable at the same time. Rundgren is an unstoppable music machine and a highly meticolous connoisseur of any music genres. As he sings in another of his most famous hits and closing track of this live album, One World, "... Down here in the street, we got it under control...". Judging by this fabulous performance, there is no doubts that he still has got it all under control.

 

 

 

Giovanni "Gio" Pilato

 

 

 

An Evening With Todd Rundgren, Live At The Ridgefield is out now and can be purchased here

 

"Buy a record, support the artists, preserve the future of music"

BRP 001

 

Sometimes artists have to pursue their dreams a little bit harder than the normal, especially in a tough world like music business. Brigitte Rios Purdy is a young American singer and songwriter that has been known for some times in the American music scene as one of the finest Blues and R&B performers of the country.

The self-produced debut EP from Rios Purdy is a musical box full of unexpected jewels, in which the American artist showcases extraordinary vocal skills and an impressive versatility in the six tracks (5 original and 1 cover) present in the album.

Rios Purdy released, back few months ago, her debut single called Lucille, Don't You Weep, a song with clear references to B.B. King signature guitar. This blues ballad exalts many aspects of the singer's capacity to move flawlessly through different tonalities within the song, thanks to her unique voice. A voice that shines, on this occasion, at its best for style and execution and it is certainly one of the highlights of the EP.

Tel Star SessionsWhen it comes to create new musical emispheres, very few artists in the world are capable to do a better job then Gov't Mule. Back few years ago, while Warren Haynes, guitarist extraordinaire and Mule's frontman was digging into the vast music archive of the band, he stumbled by accident into the first ever demo sessions recorded by himself, Allen Woody on bass and Matt Abts on drums at The Tel-Star Studios back in June 1994 during the band's early days.

Haynes thought that the sessions recorded back then sounded so fresh and contemporary and that it was finally the time to release them to the world. A very smart decision from the Mule's main man.

The 10 tracks included in the Tel-Star Sessions offer so many interesting aspects about the way that the Gov't Mule have evolved sonically, through the years. There are so many different influences in the sound of the band, influences that vary from a 90's rock, almost grung-esque style, noticeable in a song like World Of Difference or the catchy Blind Man In The Dark to more blues-rock territories very close to the heart of the Mule's sound, like in the song Rocking Horse.

bedwyr Morgan When Bluebird Reviews heard that somebody of the talent of Bedwyr Morgan was finally releasing his first solo material after almost 30 years spent On The Road with the iconic Welsh band MOjO, there was a lot of curiosity and excitement about it.

Morgan is an artist that, throughout the years, has always shown signs of great craftmanship, either from a songwriting point of view and as a singer and a guitarist too. His first self-titled solo effort is a mini EP containing 4 original tracks, 3 of which sang in Welsh language, the same tracks sang also in English version, plus a truly beautiful instrumental for a grand total of 7 songs.

The Welsh artist, despite the short length of the album, shows in full his potential through a blend of soft-rock that carries echoes of traditional Celtic music and the sound of 80's America's West Coast. The opener Ti Yw'r un (You Are The One) is an excellently crafted radio-friendly tune, on which Morgan skillfully builds great choruses to support a melody that could easily come out from the songbook of artists of the level of Chris Rea, just to make an example.

Relentless

The history of rock and roll has been re-written thousand times, each times in a different way. Some artists succeed in the attempt to disassemble and re-build the genre through their own personal visions, some others fail miserably.

Thankfully, there is also who does not need to re-write a rock and roll history book, like the Canadian power trio The Paul DesLauriers Band, because they know exactly all about the genre by heart very well and understand that the secret in playing real rock and roll has always been and always will be instinct, immediacy and, most of all, bags of talent.

Through their second album called Relentless, the band steps up definitely in their music formula by delivering, through 10 superb tracks, an authentic and complete music vernacular that goes from the genesis of rock and roll (blues) to the evolution of the genre (roots and funk).

Individually, each musician is in a class of their own. Paul DesLauriers is a true virtuoso, when it comes to play guitar and he is also an excellent singer. Greg Morency on bass dazzles the listeners with such flawless fluidity and ability. Sam Harrisson on drums and percussion dictates the changes of tempo on the album with pitch perfect chronometric precision.

By having three musicians like these, recording together the whole album locked in the same room at the same time with a spotless interplay, the end results cannot be less then phenomenal and Relentless is indeed, to say the least, a phenomenal album.

There are different shades of rock for all different palates, on the Canadian band's new record. From the epic sound of tunes like the opener Stewtro Rock (Just Got Back) and Wipes Away Your Sin to the foot-stomping blues/rock of I'm Your Man and We Just Might until stepping into more rootsy territories, like in the song Up In The Air.

Even when The Paul DesLauriers Band delves into the roots of rock and roll, as in that magnificent blues ballad called If I Still Had You, the quality of their craftmanship and the consistency of their delivery is always first class.

The tracks Gonna Make You Move Part 1 and Part 2 might have been, originally, a long suite that the band decided to split in two separate segments.The first part is more rootsy, with little infusions of funk, sprayed cleverly throughout the tune. The second part, which also closes the album, is a perfectly executed instrumental blues/rock tune and frankly, those two tracks couldn't define any better the artistic message of a band with a great knowledge, respect and understanding of rock and roll. 

Relentless is an album of rare beauty, whose sound frames beautifully the past and present of rock and roll at its very best. The Paul Deslauriers might have just pulled, through Relentless, one of the best albums of 2016.

 

 

Giovanni "Gio" Pilato

 

 

Relentless is out now and it is available via Amazon

"Buy a record, support the artists, preserve the future of music"

The BluesbonesWhenever you get to hear a band like the Belgian collective The Bluesbones, even though you are not a blues or a blues/rock fan, you cannot avoid to fall in love with their music recipe. Following their self-released 2015 studio album Saved By The Blues, the Belgian quintet returns with their second live album, simply called Double Live, recorded in front of an audience in Mechelen, Belgium at the Hyperstudio.

For any artists, performing on a stage is certainly the most congenial element to express their art and The Bluesbones, on their new release, manage successfully to crack a fabulous live set, full of musical fireworks.

What amazes the most, about The Bluesbones and their style, is the capacity of incorporating many different music genres in only one track and still making that track to sound like you are listening to a blues song but with one or many twists. The way they dazzle effortlessly in this live album, adding to their blues roots the sound of the Mississippi Delta (Moonshine), the 50's Rockabilly (Riding Out), Funk (Broken Down Car, No Good For Me) or Jazz-Rock (Devil's Bride) is truly remarkable.

Ina Forsman

 

It is a very special feeling to hear young artists respecting and loving music genres which are not exactly radio friendly, nowadays and putting, at the same time, so much dedication, hard work, love and passion in their works.

This is exactly the case of Ina Forsman, a very talented young singer/songwriter coming straight from the beautiful city of Helsinki in Finland. After working for few years side by side with her music mentor and one of the most respected harmonicists in the world, Helge Tallqvist, this superb Finnish artist has gradually developed an unconditional love for genres like blues, soul, R&B, jazz and swing, a love so beautifully illustrated in Forsman's self-titled debut album.

Recorded in only one week in Texas, United States with a group of excellent studio musicians and the special support of Tallqvist himself plus the fabulous brass band The Texas Horns, Ina Forsman's record delivers to the listener 11 music pearls, showcasing in full the beauty of her voice at 360 degrees.

If you happen to listen Forsman's voice for the first time, you will be immediately reminded of  top performers like Christina Aguilera or Amy Winehouse but Ina Forsman is much more than that. This phenomenal singer, which has penned 10 of the 11 songs of the album, shows an outstanding maturity in understanding and appreciating music in its entirety and she does so with flawless class and elegance throughout the record.

Ina Forsman's album never falls flat or repetitive in any moment. Instead, it engages and challenges the listener to follow Forsman in every direction of her music path, doesn't matter whether it is a 1920's swing tune like Bubbly Kisses, a song about drunken sex or No Room For Love, a soulful R&B song in which Ina Forsman's intense vocal delivery reaches such an outstanding level of perfection somehow unimaginable, for such a young artist.

The closing track of the album is the only cover of the Finnish artist's self-titled record and it's Nina Simone's classic I Want A Little Sugar In My Bowl. Once again, Ina Forsman delivers an impeccable version of this song with the sole accompaniment of the piano, giving the listeners real shivers in the spine through her incredible vocals.

One of the highest qualities of this record, together with Forsman's great artistry, is the purity and passion that transpires from each individual song. There is true honesty, genuinity and a great will from the Finnish singer/songwriter to show how much she cares about music and how much she gives all of herself in every different expressions of her unique music talent.

A talent that, through the years, will surely take Ina Forsman to be recognised worldwide as one of the most inspired and eclectic artists of this generation.

 

 

Giovanni "Gio" Pilato

 

 

Ina Forsman's debut album is out now and is available via Ruf Records

"Buy a record, support the artists, preserve the future of music"

"Buy a record, support the artists, preserve the future of music"

Remember to support your favorite artists through buying their products.
A good place to start is searching BestBuy.com and Amazon.com.