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SOULROCKERMICHAEL FRANTI & SPEARHEAD today announced their upcoming (and ninth) studio album SOULROCKER will be releasedvia Fantasy Records, their first album for the label. SOULROCKER features the new song "Crazy For You" a joyously upbeat rhythmic pop song that highlights Franti's soulful vocals and encompasses his socially conscious outlook.
In creating SOULROCKER-co-produced with Jamaican producers Stephen "Di Genius" McGregor (son of reggae luminary Freddie McGregor) and Dwayne "Supa Dups" Chin Quee (known for his work with artists like Bruno Mars and John Legend)-MICHAEL FRANTI & SPEARHEAD have introduced a new sensibility to their potent hybrid of hip-hop, rock, folk, and reggae: a gracefully arranged take on electronic music that more than fulfills the band's mission of making impassioned music you can dance to. Along with harnessing the Bay Area-based band's dynamic energy for a more powerful impact than ever before, SOULROCKER again shows Franti's singular ability to channel frustration into music that's both thought-provoking and triumphantly hopeful.
"Right now is a very challenging time for people, for our nation and the planet," says Franti, a longtime activist and past recipient of Global Exchange's Domestic Human Rights Award. "But I really believe that music can help fight war and violence and hatred. The world needs that more than ever now, so my intention with this album was to make music that could bring people together."
While each selection on SOULROCKER began with Franti working out melodies on his acoustic guitar, many of the album's songs ultimately evolved into beat-powered tracks that reveal a close and nuanced understanding of the electronic genre. "One of the first records I had as a kid was a Kraftwerk seven-inch that I got from the giveaway bin at the UC Davis radio station KDVS," recalls Franti, who grew up in Davis, CA. "We always do a DJ set at the end of our shows, and I wanted to try bringing in those dance and electronic elements but still keep the organic instrumentation that I've always loved."
Franti's message of positivity-minded political consciousness, once an outlier in music, has found momentum in the mainstream in recent years-a phenomenon that compelled him to push his artistry even further on SOULROCKER. "I feel a deeper sense of purpose in music today than I ever have in my career," he says. "The album's really about me challenging myself and growing, and just trying to make the most inspiring music I possibly can for this intense, crazy and wonderful time we're all living in."1. Crazy For You
2. My Lord
3. Get Myself To Saturday
4. Summertime Is In Our Hands
5. We Are All Earthlings
6. Still Standing
7. Good To Be Alive Today
8. My Favorite Wine Is Tequila
9. Once A Day
10. We Do This Every Day
11. I Got Love For Ya
12. Do You Feel The Way That I Do?
13. Love Will Find A Way$29.99Vinyl LP - 2 LPs Sealed Buy Now
Amid The Noise And HasteDC-natives SOJA are thrilled to announce the release of new album "Amid the Noise and Haste" via ATO Records. It is band's fifth full-length and was produced by multiple GRAMMY award winning Jamaican producer Supa Dups (Bruno Mars, Eminem, Rihanna, John Legend). Featured
guests include Michael Franti, Damian Marley, J Boog and Collie Buddz.
Jacob Hemphill (lead singer/guitarist) and Bobby Lee (bass) met in the first grade in Virginia. The two instantly became best friends, finding common
ground through their love of hip hop, rock and reggae, which they performed together at middle school talent shows. Throughout high school, they met
Ryan Berty (drums), Kenneth Brownell (percussion) and Patrick O'Shea (keyboards) and formed SOJA. Rafael Rodriguez (trumpet), Hellman Escorcia
(saxophone) & Trevor Young (lead guitar) joined the band when things started to heat up.
Over the course of the past few years, SOJA has sold more than 200,000 albums, headlined shows in more than 20 countries around the world,
generated over 3 million Facebook fans, 60 million YouTube views, and attracted an almost Grateful Dead-like international fan base that grows each
tour, with caravans of diehards following them from city to city.
SOJA will be hitting the road this month with stops at Hangout Music Fest and California Roots Festival and will follow with a national run of amphitheater
performances on the Soulshine tour with Michael Franti & Spearhead, Brett Dennen and Trevor Hall.1. Tear It Down
2. Your Song ft. Damian Jr. Gong Marley
3. I Believe ft. Michael Franti and Nahko
4. Easier ft. Anuhea and J Boog
5. Shadow ft. Trevor Young
6. Once Upon A Time
7. Promises and Pills ft. Alfred the MC
9. She Still Loves Me ft. Collie Buddz
12. Treading Water
13. Lucid Dreams ft. Nahko$21.99Vinyl LP - 2 LPs Sealed Buy Now
The Feast Of The Broken HeartHercules & Love Affair's third and most versatile album to date, THE FEAST OF THE BROKEN HEART sees visionary founder Andy Butler and his ever-evolving musical collective pushing the boundaries of house music, disco, and pop to create a collection of stunningly original new dancefloor anthems. Tracks like the banging "Do You Feel The Same?" highlight a remarkable roll call of diverse vocal talents, including critically acclaimed singer/songwriters Krystle Warren and John Grant as well as new discoveries Gustaph and Rouge Mary. Produced by Butler in collaboration with Viennese electro specialists Ha-Ze Factory and industrial pioneer Mark Pistel (Consolidated, Michael Franti), THE FEAST OF THE BROKEN HEART is Hercules & Love Affair at its provocative, propulsive best, coupling emotionally powerful songcraft with daring dance floor experimentalism.LP1
1. Hercules Theme 2014
2. My Offence (feat. Krystle Warren)
3. I Try To Talk To You (feat. John Grant)
4. That's Not Me (feat. Gustaph)
5. Think (feat. Rouge Mary)
1. 5:43 To Freedom (feat. Rouge Mary)
2. The Light (feat. Krystle Warre)
3. Liberty (feat. John Grant)
4. Do You Feel The Same?
5. The Key (feat. Rouge Mary)$24.99Vinyl LP - 2 LPs Sealed Buy Now
BonesOn The Delta Saints' new album, Bones, their first for Loud & Proud Records, the Nashville-based band have stripped their roots/blues sound down to its essence, having rearranged the elements into something uniquely their own. Steeped in rock 'n' roll's building blocks - country, R&B, soul and gospel - The Delta Saints' second full-length effort explores influences like Jack White, The Black Keys, My Morning Jacket, Band of Horses and Led Zeppelin. Producer/engineer/mixer and Third Man Records alum, Eddie Spear [Jack White, Arctic Monkeys, Neil Young] provided a ghostly, psychedelic atmosphere at Nashville's Sputnik Sound studios, yielding a sound unlike anything they have created before.
"We got to the point where what we were recording and playing had veered from what we were listening to and loving on our turntables, which can lead to discontent," said Louisiana-born singer/lyricist Ben Ringel, who co-founded the band almost eight years ago with fellow Belmont University student, Kansas native bassist David Supica. Soon after, they were joined by Tennessee-bred guitarist Dylan Fitch and later, after a health scare with the band's former harmonica player, enlisted Louisville resident and keyboardist, Nate Kremer, who was added to the lineup only two weeks before a two month long European tour.
Taking a novel approach of writing songs spontaneously in the studio, The Delta Saints were challenged to create in the moment and as a result, Bones is their most adventurous effort yet. The album is a collection of eclectic songs, beginning with The White Stripes-meets-Led Zeppelin fuzz-toned garage-rock blast of "Sometimes I Worry." The spare, spooky strains of "Butte la Rose" tell the band's tale of a Louisiana town purposely flooded and displaced five years ago to save New Orleans. The Grapes of Wrath drama of "Dust," based on Ringel's grandfather, an East Kansas farmer, builds to a primal wail at nature with a stunning coda in which Dylan Fitch's guitar drops out and Kremer's B3 organ provides the climax. The title track, "Bones" features hoodoo organ riffs and African-influenced trance music, which came from listening to the Sahara desert African groove of Niger's Tuareg guitarist Omara "Bombino" Moctar and Mali's Tinariwen. The grindhouse honky-tonk chain gang chants of "Heavy Hammer" celebrates the work ethic in no uncertain terms, a call for unity in the wake of Ringel's frustration about getting stuck in the rat race and feeling trapped by some of life's mundane tasks. "Berlin," the first song they recorded after adding Nate on keys, started out as an instrumental penned in the title city while on tour. It eventually metamorphosed into a country twang intro and a prog-rock jam. Bones is a complete work veering between despair and apocalyptic dread.
"We're trying to push ourselves forward to do something more modern, but at the same time incorporating where we come from," explained Ringel.
"It was incredible to be able to write a song on the spot and immediately hear what it sounded like," added Supica. "It was a great way to capture the magic right when you come up with an idea, preserving that raw element. We were used to playing a song for months on the road before we recorded it. Still, on the flip side, it was absolutely terrifying to sit in the studio watching the clock tick and waiting for a song to come out. That's where (producer) Ed Spear came into play; he was so good at keeping us pointed in the right direction."
"This record was made out of both necessity and desire. We needed to be fulfilled and surprised by music again, and we also needed to fulfill that love of writing and recording again."
The Delta Saints have independently released two EPs (2010's Pray On and A Bird Called Angola), a full-length album (2012's Death Letter Jubilee) and a live disc (2014's Live at Exit/In). They have spent the last eight years touring the US averaging almost 200 shows per year, organically growing their audience, fan by fan, city by city. Major appearances include several festivals including Wakarusa, Summer Camp, Harvest, The Ride, Summerfest and The Simple Man Cruise. A testament to their mixed appeal, they have opened for such diverse acts as Blackberry Smoke, Robert Randolph & The Family Band, Taj Mahal, Dickey Betts and Michael Franti & Spearhead.
The Delta Saints have also have a large international fan base having toured Europe a total of six times, selling out countless venues and playing more than 200 shows in Spain, Sweden, France, Switzerland and Germany, as well as several festivals in Holland (Moulin Blues, Ribs and Blues), Belgium (Gevarenwinkel) and Germany (Grolsch Blues Fest).
With all that they've accomplished as a hard-working group on their own, The Delta Saints have earned their graduation to industry veteran Tom Lipsky's Loud & Proud Records (which has been the home of Rush, Lynyrd Skynyrd, KISS, Robert Plant, Rob Zombie, Lenny Kravitz and The String Cheese Incident, among others).
"Don't look so tired, my dear," sings Ringel in Bones' closing track, "Berlin," echoing the band's progress. "We may be bruised, but the day is almost here."
"It's hard to see progress when you're in the middle of things," said Supica about The Delta Saints' ambitions. "We try to take stock every six months or so and look back from where we've come, from eating at McDonald's and sleeping on people's floors to staying at a Motel 6 and graduating to La Quinta. We mark our success by the hotel chain where we're staying. When we get to Marriott, we know we've made it."
Bones proves The Delta Saints are well on their way to making that reservation.$18.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now