From country to classical, rock & roll to R & B, hip-hop to jazz everyone enjoys some kind of music. This is the place to review your favorite musical artists, albums, tracks and concerts. Learn more about Music Matters
The Luminous Pearl Lia Scallon 2013 / Sounds of Sirius 72’22” "The Luminous Pearl" is Lia Scallon’s tenth release on the Sounds of Sirius label. Using her hypnotic voice to sing and chant in her own “Language of Light,” Scallon tells the story of “The Legendary Luminous Pearl,” also known … more
Los Angeles Blues Ciro Hurtado 2012 / Into Productions 41 minutes "Los Angeles Blues" is a wonderful collection of eleven original acoustic guitar solos from Peruvian-born Ciro Hurtado. Hurtado started learning the guitar at age twelve and was playing in rock bands as well as Andean Folk ensembles by the time he was fourteen. Over … more
Open Sky David Nevue 2013 / Midnight Rain Productions 1.1 hours "Open Sky" is the much-anticipated fourteenth solo piano album from David Nevue, and I truly believe this is his best work to date. The seventeen tracks on this album were composed over a fairly long period of time and show a more dynamic and darker side of Nevue’s … more
Journey of the Soul John Paris 2013/2004 / Paris Original Music 55 minutes "Journey of the Soul" is the newly-remastered 2004 debut CD by pianist/composer John Paris. A lifelong musician who has performed professionally for more than forty years, Paris calls his style a fusion of new age and jazz that is intended to “uplift … more
The album title is the hook that caused me to buy this CD. I thought this music would be dark and scary, but I found that the majority of the songs on this album to be completely opposite of that. Erza Koeing has such a soothing voice. He makes this album worth listening to. The other three band members really compliment Erza's vocals with their instruments. The best songs on this album are the … more
Grace Michael Hoppe’ 2013 / Spring Hill Music 46 minutes plus enhancements "Grace" is the twentieth recording (plus inclusion on many compilations) from Michael Hoppe’, a Grammy-nominated composer who never ceases to amaze. One might expect that after so many albums, an artist would stick to a comfort zone or with a … more
Since February of 2006, I've had a love-hate relationship with Opeth. This honestly has annoyed me a lot over the years because at least with run-of-the-mill nu-metal and metalcore sewage like Korn, Killswitch Engage, or Disturbed, I knew immediately to loathe them after some extremely unpleasant exposure, but with Opeth, I've been constantly conflicted on whether or not to like them because … more
The Blue Rose Al Conti 2013 / Shadowside Music. 48 minutes Grammy nominated artist Al Conti (Northern Seas, 2011) has released his fifth album,The Blue Rose. His previous release, Scheherazade (2010) received four nominations from the Zone Music Reporter Awards, including Album of the Year. Like the two earlier recordings, The Blue Rose … more
Opus Four Tim Neumark 2013 / Tim Neumark 57 minutes "Opus Four" is a collection of thirteen original piano solos by Tim Neumark. For those not familiar with music terminology, an opus number is traditionally assigned to a composer’s work to put it in chronological order. Those numbers aren’t used as much in contemporary … more
BaronSamedi3 posted a Quick Tip about Billy Joel.
I'm familiar with all the jokes made about this guy, but they don't change what he was in his prime: A fantastic, gifted singer with a versatile voice and a gift for some of the best storytelling through songwriting on the planet.
Who'd a thunk it? After years of infighting the remaining founding members of The Beach Boys, namely Brian Wilson, Mike Love and Al Jardine along with Bruce Johnston and David Marks have embarked on a 50th anniversary tour and recorded a terrific new studio album dubbed "That's Why God Made The Radio". Although I am always a bit leery of new albums by aging rockers I found this one to be an absolute … more
He went from Navy singer to Lower Broadway to Nashville Star, but luckily for us, Jared Ashley is now going mainstream! After placing 5th on the reality show in 2006, Jared Ashley took to the road to perfect his live performances and songwriting skills. In 2010 the singer/songwriter went to the studio and released an album without help from a label. With a self-financed … more
Hokulea AOMusic 2013 / Arcturian Gate 49 minutes "Hokulea" is the fourth release from world music group, AOMusic, whose primary artists are Richard Gannaway, Miriam Stockley, and Jay Oliver and features children’s choirs and supporting artists from around the world. Upbeat, cinematic and joyously rhythmic, this is music to … more
Solo Piano Diary 3 Christian Lindquist 2013 / CHL Production 60’52” "Solo Piano Diary 3" is the third volume in a series of solo piano improvisations by Swedish pianist/composer Christian Lindquist. The first two "Diaries" were released in 2008 and 2010, and, like those two gems, the twenty-three … more
RabidChihuahua posted a Quick Tip about Opeth.
Ever since I first listened to Opeth (February of 2006), I've had a love-hate relationship with them. I think Opeth's first two albums "Orchid" and "Morningrise" are good prog-metal albums with some neat melodic death metal touches, but until their recent switch to straight-up prog-rock (which is actually pretty decent), they've meandered in this wishy-washy … more
At this point, it's hard for me to say who's my absolute favorite rap artist/group, but I know for a fact that Eric B. & Rakim are in the top 3 of my personal favorites. Despite having a pretty meager discography consisting of four studio albums, nearly all of their songs are on the money, so in the end, it ultimately shows that quality trumps quantity. … more
New Day John Jarvie 2013 / John Jarvie 58’16” "New Day" is the second full-length CD from classical guitarist John Jarvie, following his 2007 debut, the simply-titled "Classical Guitar."I have had the privilege of hosting Jarvie in concert in my home the past several years, and his performances … more
No one can sing about the feeling of being in love like Willie Nelson. There is a honesty and wisdom in his voice. He makes me believe in every word of every song. His love songs are superb. I especially like the tunes "You'll Never Know" and "I'll Keep On Loving You". He also makes believe that it is possible to fall out of love. "Is The Better Part … more
Getaway Lisa Hilton 2013 / Ruby Slippers 61 minutes "Getaway" is jazz pianist/composer Lisa Hilton’s fifteenth release as a bandleader and her seventeenth album to date (her first two albums were solo piano). Her current trio includes bassist Larry Grenadier and drummer Nasheet Waits and, together, the three artists present … more
Make It Mine Heather Pierson 2010 / Vessel Recordings 61’31” I don’t review many vocal albums, but I enjoyed Heather Pierson’s 2012 solo piano The Open Road so much that I was curious about this other aspect of her musical persona. I’m impressed! The sixteen original songs present an eclectic variety of musical … more