Exclusive Artist Review: Isabel & The Whispers – Self Titled Debut Album

NYC-born and bred artist Isabel Marcheselli (formerly known as Isabel Rivera) formed her band in 2005 under the official name Isabel & The Whispers and quickly began manifesting her love for music into a collection of anthemic songs that would become the band’s self titled debut album. Known for her insatiably dynamic craft in several artistic areas including vocals, songwriting and poetry, Isabel has musically crossed a vast array of genres and her eclectic scope of music continues to evolve and defy easy categorization. While she was classically trained, she can easily create music in mass-appealing genres such as Pop, Dance and Indie – utilizing her craft and artistic merit in ways that would ultimately garner the undivided attention of many listeners across the musical landscape.

And in 2008, after a few years of writing and solidifying their signature sound, Isabel & The Whispers would release their self titled debut album comprised of 8 atmospheric and intellectual tracks that would give Mazzy Star’s Hope Sandoval a run for her money. This amazingly crafty collection of tunes provide that aura of catchiness you’d expect from a vocalist with a Pop sensibility, but ultimately wins you over with a soft Indie implementation with a crisp subtlety that will easily captivate any fan of the genre, respectively. Opening track and anchor single “Josefina” is direct evidence of this and it really kicks off the record with a signature style that touches on textures of ambience and atmosphere. The piano lead parallels diligently with Isabel’s hypnotically visceral vocal melodies, giving the listener a listening experience that is both effective and unforgettable upon first listen. It’s an anthemic song that truly sets the tone for the rest of the album and casts a bright spotlight onto Isabel’s ability to not only write an amazing melody, but express them thoroughly through lyrical content as well. Her poetic and story-telling ability really puts her on a level very few artists tend to reach, and it’s quite a joy to behold when you really pay attention to not only what she sings, but how she sings it.

Another notable track on this record is breakup song “High Horse”, a song about a past love with Isabel’s signature story-telling method that has been made apparent from the very first track. Once again we get a beautiful piano lead, this time in a minor key, a smooth rhythm section and a more high-ranged Isabel with this song’s anthemic chorus. Though she tackles common subject matter in this song, she again brings a simple concept to new heights with a poetic presence that really brings the overall story to form in a way that is intelligent and artistically visceral. It’s a rollercoaster of emotions sung with a sense of subtlety that almost makes it a lullaby, but no matter how you interpret it, Isabel just does it well. She completely makes the concept her own. One more notable track is closing song “Dot To Dot”, a song that combines the previous two songs into one intelligently crafted composition. This anthem really closes in on each element both Isabel and her band have brought to the table throughout the album’s duration in a way that ties it all together, perhaps also with a bow on top like a musical gift. We have Isabel at the peak of her vocal melody execution, delivering her blissful and breathy lyrical outbursts that are again enticing and thought provoking. Her band serves up their amazingly rhythmic measures, diligently paralleling her story-telling approach in a way that is effective and almost surreal. By the time you reach the end, you are almost disappointed it is now over. But the best part is, you can start it all over again, and that’s what makes this album stand out – its staying power. Its ability to stay with you even long after it’s over. Something not heard often among today’s more modern releases. And that’s another thing that makes this album a standout, the fact it could easily please music fans from just about any generation or era. Older fans will find it nostalgic, while newer fans will hear its innovation. But the truth is – it’s both.

This is an album you won’t forget anytime soon. You can get your copy now on Spotify, Apple Music, iTunes and any other digital music streaming platform.


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Exclusive Artist Review: West Of House – “Drown The Wind” Album

We’ve reviewed and featured West Of House before and these guys do not disappoint. With 2021 in full force nearing the end of summer, the alt-rockers have put out a subsequent album release that surprised just about everyone that knows them, and intrigued a plethora of new listeners as well. And that release is their newest album ‘Drown The Wind’, which is easily their best effort to date that really brings their signature sound right to the forefront.

Comprised of 11 anthemic and atmospheric songs, ‘Drown The Wind’ is an alt-rock album that encompasses the band’s artistic merit while combining crucial elements from 90s industry heavyweights like REM, Coldplay and Oasis. Anchor single “Entwined” is an excellent example of this and really delivers the production and performance parallels that set the tone for the rest of the album. The song begins with some dynamically executed time signatures, showcasing the band’s driving rhythm section and dueling guitars that bring out the brilliance of the well-written vocal melodies. It’s a very multi layered mix that shines a light on each band member where you can easily hear each of their individual contributions into one precise unit. Another anchor track on this record is “Fall Down”, featuring a glistening mandolin intro that is anthemic, melodic and insatiably versatile. This melody-driven track really showcases the high-range vocals that once again really encapsulate into melody choices that are very next-level. The song is hauntingly ominous, ambient and really adds a layer of magic to the album that puts the band at the top of their game. This is a song that sustains a standout all on its own and will easily be one that people will be talking about.

One more track that needs mentioning is “Where To Begin”, another atmospheric tune with visceral synth parts that implement alongside the chord progressions and add a layer of detail that is crucial and effective. This one is a little more rhythmic and has climactic measures that really serve up a wholesomeness not heard often with independent artists. This track also embraces melodic structures like the previous song, but also diligently blends more atmospheric guitar swells and smooth bass lines. This will easily be a favorite on the album right alongside the sensibility we heard with “Fall Down”. Overall, West Of House have really set the bar higher for themselves and continue to manifest magically with every release. You can hear the evolution of their own signature sound but still get a dose of nostalgia from great callbacks to the 90s alt-rock sound that we’ve come to know and love over many years. ‘Drown The Wind’ from start to finish is brilliantly crafted, melodically visceral and really explores the depths of combining originality and familiarity. You can get your copy of the album now on Spotify, Apple Music, iTunes and several other digital music streaming platforms.


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Exclusive Artist Review: Cornelius Wright – “Bandit” Album

Rising Hollywood rapper Cornelius Wright began heating up the streets with his distinctive bars and hooks since his inception into the market in 2011. Originally hailing from Chattanooga in Tennessee, Wright’s gritty and innovative signature sound has garnered him an insatiable growing fan base and the independent artist over the years has proven to be a standout of his calibre with both his talent and work ethics collectively.

Now in 2021, the manifestation of Cornelius Wright’s craft comes full circle with the album release ‘Bandit’, comprised of nine hypnotic tracks that diligently showcase his own unique breed of Hip Hop with several crucial musicianship factors and cohesive elements as a songwriter. After the success of his first two singles earlier this year, Wright knew that he’d have to come out swinging with his follow-up release after already setting the bar high for himself. True to that notion, he did exactly that with ‘Bandit’, which is also a milestone for him considering it’s his debut album. There are many highlights on this record, and one of those highlights is opening track “Shine (feat. Maal the Pimp)”, an excellent banger that sets the tone for the rest of the album with Cornelius Wright’s aggressive and witty flow that gives him his distinctive stylization. This heavy-bass beat is very ambient and really gives Wright room to deliver an effective and dangerously catchy chorus alongside visceral verses that parallel each other brilliantly. This track opens the record powerfully and really serves up many crucial flavor throughout the song’s duration.

Now while this album has very innovative ideas and formulas, it also touches on originality and familiarity within the underground spectrum with the track “It’s Dark And Hell Is Hot”, boasting a flavorful 90s sensibility that showcased Wright on a whole different angle. And one thing he maintains in this track is his ability to be consistent while exploring other directions. His artistic merit is just as effective even when the formula changes, something not heard often in today’s market for Hip Hop. The beat on this track has an anthemic and subtle overtone that allows Wright to have plenty of breathing room to deliver his distinctive style of lyrical outbursts, giving us more of what we’ve come to know on this album while implementing new approaches as the cohesive measures play out.

One more notable track on this record is “Dusk Til Dawn (feat. Vanessa Krauss)”, a hauntingly ominous song with R&B components which diligently enhance the multi layered textures already present in the song. Vanessa Krauss vibes on this track with a hypnotic vocal melody in the chorus that really adds a multitude of flavor. Wright brings out a more low-toned vocal delivery that builds up to a climactic resolution, keeping the listener on the edge of their seat. Once again, this track is another example of the different effective angles that take place throughout the album, almost like chapters. But they are coherently structured and put together in a way similar to how puzzle pieces form the entirety of an overall picture. And that’s what we get with ‘Bandit’, many chapters and milestones with each song being the contributing factor to a collection that forms one big picture and payoff. And once it comes together, you look at in awe and come back to it time and time again to admire its presence and influence. This album will easily satisfy any Hip Hop fan whether it’s old school or new school – it has a bit of everything and never leaves a stone unturned. You can get your copy of ‘Bandit’ now on YouTube, Spotify, Apple Music, iTunes and all other digital music streaming platforms.


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