Exclusive Review: Andrew Farstar – “Classics” Album/LP

Review by: Justyn W. Brodsky

Cover Art for Andrew Farstar’s “Classics” LP

This album of classics, just like the album name ‘Classics’ suggests, is a nostalgic treat from the way-back-when machine that features a vast array of songs from renowned artists that we’ve come to know and love over many years. With the voice of Sydney-based artist Andrew Farstar at the helm of this record, tackling these beloved anthems with a modern and youthful approach that gives us a whole new perspective on these high profile covers, ‘Classics’ is not just a run-of-the-mill tribute or half hearted renditions, it’s a visceral reimagination.

Featuring chart-topping hit songs on the record that includes classics like “Your Song” (Elton John), “I Don’t Wanna Lose Your Love” (Crystal Gayle), “Sealed With a Kiss” (Brian Hyland), and many more, Andrew Farstar breathes new life into these songs with a modern millennial signature sound that brings out a whole new world to songs that have been loved for decades by a widespread of fans from many different generations. His versatile and multifaceted mid-to-high range vocals are precise and punctual as they are charming as well. He also brings these tracks out in a way that could resonate with younger generations, who will find an entirely new perspective and appreciation for songs older generations may or may not know…but most likely definitely do.

The musicianship factors and production value parallels perfectly with both performance and structure. A lot of the tracks have a distinctive sound that could be reminiscent of artist pioneers like Tony Bennet, Frank Sinatra, Michael Bublé, James Arthur, Harry Connick Jr., and those of a similar caliber. But, when it comes to the overall execution, Andrew finds a way to truly make these songs his own reimagining in a way that gets us to appreciate these classic tunes in a whole new spectrum. Basically, if the renowned artists that wrote these songs took a listen to Andrew‘s versions, they’d be definitely mind blown at the brilliant balance between the insatiable feeling of originality and familiarity he brings to these songs. It’s an album of nostalgia, skilled musicianship, and a demonstration of making something completely your own when it comes to artistic merit.

You’ll love every rendition of these songs that Andrew has put together and will remind you that these songs still can have a major relevance in your life. You’ll love ‘Classics’ from beginning to end, unconditionally. You’ll be glad we recommended this to you. You’re welcome.


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Cymber Lily Quinn – “Band Of Angels”

Review by: Justyn W. Brodsky

Hailing from the landscapes of Colorado, Cymber Lily Queen has been a standout of her caliber as a professional award-winning harpist and composer, specializing in background music and house concerts in a vast array of different settings and moods. Her music is versatile and infuses a nature-based articulation that encourages conversation and connection. And her track “Band Of Angels” is a brilliant demonstration of this.

With tightly-knit harp swells and diligently placed melodies in the forefront, Cymber Lily Queen really entices our ears to embrace atmosphere and ambience. Her emotional melodies bring us to a place of comfort and relaxation, meanwhile comprises a realm where our thoughts are in safe keeping and our hearts can stay warm. It’s a song that becomes the soundtrack of your soul and the essence of your aura, bringing to the table a composition that not only embraces you, but stays with you long after it’s over as well. The melodies stay within a safe and subtle mid-to-high range key signature that leaves room for expression, rhythm and lead parts for Cymber to showcase her craft with many angles; serving up a dose of her songwriting techniques as well as skills with her harp in its entirety. It’s a perfect song and window into Cymber Lily Queen‘s craft and God given talent, as well as her signature sound and performance style.

If you’re into something smooth, classical, atmospheric and heart-warming, then Cymber Lily Queen will be going on your favorites list in no time. She is a joy to behold.

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Artist Review: Delti Becker – “Voiceless” LP

Review by: Justyn Brodsky

Concept albums are some of the most intriguing. With the concept of the many different emotions of Winter and the cold, Songwriter/Composer Delti Becker presents us with a hauntingly visceral and melodically blissful listening experience with his newest album Voiceless.

With many moods, landscapes and surreal sequences throughout the record, this 19-track masterpiece engages us in a journey into an instrumentally emotional realm with the cold and Winter-themed song titles and conceptual cover art. With production value and songwriting factors that parallel each other perfectly, Voiceless is one of the best demonstrations of how music can be very emotional and visual in an instrumental setting.

Those that understand Classical music and Music Theory will especially appreciate this album, but its modernized approach is perhaps one of the strongest elements Becker brings to the table on this record. Each song resonates with the next, and the choices between melodies and instruments is what makes them so effective when you listen to each track in its entirety. First thing you recognize is the elite songwriting structures that have gone into these songs – no ordinary musician or composer can pull off a signature sound like this without the gift of natural talent. The other is the production value. Every measure has the strings, pianos and supporting instruments in their rightful place with multifaceted multi-layers, and a vast array of melodies that set the moods and emotions that carry the weight of everything you hear.

This is a powerful album for aspiring artists, and artists that wanna be inspired. It’s an exercise of putting a concept in place and getting it across without the use of lyrics. And Voiceless does this beautifully. It’s a modern record for the classic listener. It’s currently available on several digital music retailers and streaming platforms – you’ll be more than happy you listened.

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Artist Review: Vladimir Sterzer – “Black Mirrors” LP

Review by: Justyn Brodsky

With beautiful piano landscapes and visceral measures in every track, Vladimir Sterzer brings us on a musical journey of emotions, ambience, and a surreal atmosphere with his album Black Mirrors.

Comprised of 16 tracks that are ominously dark and brilliantly melodic, Black Mirrors is just as thought provoking as it is peaceful. Each song is written and performed with absolute precision and encompasses raw emotion that parallels with the top notch production value. It’s an unwavering story-telling album that can mean something different to each person that listens, and is instrumentally dynamic as it is simple at times, though always appropriate.

Vladimir brings us more than just a collection of songs with this album, he brings us anthems, compositions of glistening textures and unforgettable piano swells that grab your attention from the very beginning. It’s an album you feel, one that you can listen to no matter the moods that are involved. It’s an album that allows you to escape the clutches of personal conflict and really release your anxiety.

Black Mirrors is an album that really puts a modern spin on some of the most prominent classical music over many generations and musical eras. It’s a rare treat and an absolute gem in its own right; and really showcases the brilliance of Vladimir‘s songwriting and overall signature sound. There is endless beauty in this album, no matter how you listen to it. And you’ll find yourself coming back to these tracks time and time again; as they are truly timeless compositions.

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Artist Review: Andy James Releases Her Inspirational EP For The Holiday Season “The Christmas Song”

Review by: Justyn Brodsky

Beautiful, jazzy and classy, Andy James brings joyful bliss to the essence of the holiday season with her newest EP The Christmas Song.

Comprised of a classically melodic single of her song “The Christmas Song” and a nostalgic cover of the holiday classic “White Christmas”, Andy James brings her soulful voice to the forefront on this record with a jazzy signature sound that is multifaceted and spiritually versatile.

With glistening piano leads, a bossa-nova influenced rhythm section and smooth stand-up bass riffs, the band behind the voice of Andy James brings out her very best on these songs with her beautifully toned vocal range and soothing melody placements that could easily be on Broadway and Las Vegas stages. Her eclectic and classic vocal touches breathes endless likability factors through every measure and really knows how to showcase her voice in many effective angles. Her approach is subtle, anthemic, and leaves an impression on you that is unforgettable and unwavering. Those with an insatiable hankering for real jazz will absolutely fall head over heals for Andy James.

This EP is a perfect holiday anthem for your family nights during this year’s holiday season, as well as the soundtrack to your favorite high class or five-star event setting. The moods delivered in her music are wrapped up like a perfect Christmas package of spirit, talent and true essence of the holiday season with that classical jazzy style that has influenced almost every genre that exists today. Andy James has a world class voice, beauty, and sings passionately through every measure of The Christmas Song EP. You’ll be adding this to your holiday collection this Christmas season, and will enjoy it for many years to come.

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Music Theory: Boss Piano – A Lesson In Cadences

Article by: Justyn Brodsky

It is nearly impossible for any piano player to not hear the word cadence at least once in their life. Before explaining the cadence meaning, I will start with the reference of what a musical phrase is.

As you might already know, it is a musical thought composed with four measures length in most cases, and incomplete also. A cadence is a chord progression composed usually of at least 2 chords that ends a phrase or a part of a piece of music.

The cadence has a really important role in any piece of piano sheet music because it gives a sense of resolution for that rhythm. There are some types of cadences that are authentic, deceptive, half, and plagal. They are divided into two groups: finished cadences and unfinished cadences.

The authentic cadence is the movement from the chord V to I of the key center. It is usually written V-I and is the most common and most frequently used cadence. For an example, when it comes to the C Major scale, try playing from V (G) to I (C) and you will notice by yourself how a great finish sounds, because the authentic cadence is also known as a perfect cadence and is well-known for its most finished contribution.

When it comes to the deceptive cadence, it is good to know that it’s also called the interrupted cadence. The name is very suggestive, as in this case, it ends on an unexpected chord. The music sounds reminiscent of something interrupting the piece. For this one, the most common chord progression is from chord V to chord VI, also written as V-VI. For an example, using the A Major scale, the chords are V which in this case is the key E and VI which is the key F sharp minor. Play it and listen carefully to get a familiarity to this type of cadence, so you will be able to use it in your own piano tabs.

When it comes to unfinished cadences, it is easy to anticipate that the sound will be unfinished. This happens because the unfinished cadences don’t end on chord I. By using an unfinished cadence at the end of a phrase in a piece of piano sheet music, it will give the listener the feeling that there is more to come in the next section and that the piece is not over.

In the group of unfinished cadences there is the half cadence. It is also known as imperfect cadence and it ends on chord V, while it can start on chord I, II or IV. For an example, in the G Major scale, we take the chords I (which is key G) to chord V (which is key D). Listen and you will notice that this is not the end, it’s more like a “wait for the next part” kind of feeling. When it comes to plagal cadence, the progression is from chord IV to chord I, also found written as IV-I.

Cadences are a great way to practice and develop piano techniques, and are also considered part of the little things that form the basis of piano for any player.

If you need material for rehearsal, here is a website where you can get piano sheets for free.

Connect with Boss Piano to get your copies now, and other great tips & information as well:

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Artist Review: Emmanuel Dalmas – “Father” Single/Music Video

Review by: Justyn Brodsky

An exercise in audio and visual chemistry, and a journey into dreamlike sequences and paralleled musicianship.

That’s just one small way of describing Emmanuel Dalmas‘ captivating piano & violin-driven single “Father”, accompanied by some powerful cinematography that shows a vast array of landscapes, geography, and amazement for the eye in an effective sequential format.

This instrumental composition is one that demonstrates not only production quality, but music theory and strong musicianship components as well. With brilliant measures of melodically crafted violin and piano, this is a great modernized take on the classical genre.

“Father” is especially effective with the music video’s cinematography adding to the chemistry to bring it all together into one dynamic masterpiece. From subtle swells to strong climaxes throughout the measures, the story-telling sensation you get from Dalmas‘ composing style really sets the tone for this song and leaves a signature stylization that really encompasses raw emotions. The chemistry between the entirety of the instrumental setting is definitely soundtrack-worthy, and could work in almost any film setting if placed properly.

“Father” is definitely an anthem within. A song that puts emotions and melody into the forefront and grasps at your body, mind, and soul altogether. However, with the enchanting cinematography that rides along with the composition, you’ll get the full sensation of just how powerful this song really is.

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