Artist Review: Kevin Borland – “Talking To Dead People” Album

Orlando, Florida’s Kevin Borland started making his impact in the music world with his 2016 debut album ‘Harbor City Meltdown’, a record that handsomely boasts his artistically progressive pop/alternative rock signature sound with a stylization that is original and dynamic. Tackling the realm of music with many successful releases under his belt over many years, Borland has a true knack and passion for being a composer/solo artist with several crucial influences from industry heavyweights like David Bowie, Peter Gabriel, as well as guitar pioneer Steve Vai.

Consistently putting out an array of notable releases since his debut in 2016, Borland has manifested into a thriving and rising solo artist, upping the ante with every record in terms of catchiness, coherence, creativity and originality. And this is heavily apparent with his newest album ‘Talking To Dead People’, a 15-track juggernaut that brings Borland’s colorful musical landscapes into to the forefront with cohesively catchy guitar riffs, progressive keyboard measures and melody-driven vocals fused together with well thought out lyrical themes. The track “Spoon Without a Fork” is a good example of this. With an unwavering groove from start to finish at the helm of this song, this track’s bass lines really tighten up the rhythm section in a way that drives the song in a dynamic direction alongside the story-telling narrative of Borland’s vocals. Topping the flavors off with prog/rock-style single-picking guitar riffs, this song is a standout of the album with its innovative verses and dangerously catchy chorus alongside all of the layers this song peels back as it plays out. If this is your first time hearing Kevin Borland, then this song will leave you with an insatiably unforgettable impression.

Another notable track on this record is the synth-driven “Autographed Picture of a Robot Dog”, a more jam band kind of approach with a gritty, bluesy rotund low end carrying an ominous melody that reminds you of the London nightlife. This song is anthemic, atmospheric and continues to demonstrate Borland’s inventive lyrical narratives – giving this song a distinctive edge that is sharp, witty and altogether innovative. Every part of this song is put together very diligently, especially the background vocal layers in the chorus that really give the entirety of this song’s melody an enhancement of compliments and style. It’s a brilliant listen from beginning to end and really solidifies the album’s overall tone.

One other song that really stands out on this record is closing track “No Love in the USA”, a more upbeat track with cruising tempos, diligently paralleled keys and guitars, and a big chorus that encompasses an anthemic arena of catchiness. This crafty closeout song not only wraps the record up with a shiny bow on top, but also entices you to start the record over again and do a deeper dive into Kevin Borland’s discography altogether. One thing this album has especially is multi genre approaches without crossing into absurd genre-mixing territories. It’s not some experimental craziness, it’s a diligently-composed and brilliantly themed collection of songs with crafty thought provoking lyrics that implement artistic outbursts of spoken word measures that really lend to the theming aspects of each song – coherently showcasing a signature sound that’s not only effective, but innovative in its execution as well. The attention to detail is amazing not only in terms of writing, but the performance factor as well. The production value is on point and doesn’t outdo itself in any way throughout the record’s duration. All in all, ‘Talking to Dead People’ is hands down Kevin Borland’s best release effort yet and will definitely hold a high regard upon those giving him a first listen. Those who are just discovering him will especially be impressed and will likely find enticement to go down the rabbit hole of Borland’s past releases, as well as pay close attention to the prospect of future ones as well. This album will not (and does not) disappoint in the slightest. ‘Talking to Dead People’ officially drops in June of this year and will be available across all digital music streaming platforms.


Connect:

•Official Website: https://www.kevinborlandmusic.com/

•Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/KevinBorlandMusic

•YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqBEbImP6SgSCYUhdMXpfQ


©️ Artist Reach, LLC | ASCAP | All Rights Reserved

Exclusive Artist Review: The Harmalators – “Two Great Minds Think Alike” Album

We’ve had The Harmalators duo on our platform before, and they have yet to do disappoint. Since that time, the elite Californi-natives have put together another plethora of colorfully eclectic songs with top notch production value and songwriting technique versatility – some which have landed them in award/charting positions. Comprised of eight amazingly blissful textures and structures that melodically soar throughout the musical landscape, the two brothers in The Harmalators have truly hit it out of the park with their 8-track collective, titled ‘Two Great Minds Think Alike‘, an exercise in innovation, thoroughness, blissfulness and so much more that’ll captivate your musical aura and ambience.

Opening track “Love On Fire” really emphasizes their vocal melody approach, all while keeping that indie feel at the forefront with several facets of different instruments playing their respective roles. Each vocalist really helps enhance the other and you can tell that their togetherness and solidification really puts the melody strength into the writing structure in its entirety. It’s a brilliant intro to the album that will easily entice you to listen to the duration of the record in its entirety.

“Where Would I Be Without You” is a much more simple listen but is undeniably a much more basic structure – and that is held to the highest regard. It’s a shorter song, one that is easily to take in as a classic, and could definitely be heard as an intro to one of those 90s sitcoms (a GOOD one, by the way). Another facet of this track is to find it impossible to get it out of your head. From its title track lyrics, addictive melody structure and just overall charming presence with its well-put-together.

Overall, ‘Two Great Minds Think Alike’ insatiably showcase both brothers’ strongest points in both production and performance value in ways that entice any listener to hear what they’ve put together over the years together and solo-wise as well. They’ve put out a small catalogue of their innovative gems in the past foür😝 its time, but this 8-track collection of highly-produces bliss will definitely turn some heads; especially when an album like this is in the band’s arsenal.

“Two Great Minds Think Alike” have also garnered them some award status. Including…

If this is the first time you’ve heard the first time you’ve heard The Harmalators, then it definitely won’t be the last!


Connect/Listen:

•https://twitter.com/hbarmalators
https://www.facebook.com/harmalators

©️ Artist Reach, LLC | ASCAP | All Rights Reserved

Exclusive Artist Review: Custom – “V” Album

Emerging from the iconic Seattle music scene, 5-piece rockers Custom began hitting the ground running in the music realm when they first formed in 2002 by guitarist Corey Petro and quickly began acquiring a street buzz. Flash forward nineteen years and Custom is currently one of the leading voices in the vibrant Seattle scene, releasing a handful of records and performing shows at a vast array of prominent venues and events to create a big name for themselves as a band with a raw energy approach to their big guitar-driven signature sound.

Their flavor of Rock is very distinctive; utilizing elements from 80s bands like Iron Maiden, Twisted Sister and Judas Priest while also diligently implementing a more modern sensibility that fits today’s more innovative Rock aura. After the widespread success of their album ‘Brace For Impact’ in 2018, Custom knew they had to follow up with a record that would do themselves justice while also raising the bar to the heights they already created – and that resulted in the band’s 2021 release ‘V’, their highly anticipated fifth studio album. If fans of the band were eager for a release that would crank up the performance and production value while still boasting that Custom signature sound they’ve been known for, then they got exactly what they wanted and a boatload more. Opening banger “King Alice” sets the tone for the record and truly hits you full force with their pounding rhythm section, beefy guitar gains and arena-style vocals that come together into one explosive sound. Vocalist David Lyon is at the top of his game on this track with his anthemic melody choices, high-range leads and distinctively executed vibratos. He leaves no stone unturned and really brings his vocal approach right to the forefront in a way that is both effective and impressionable for both old fans and new. For anyone that hasn’t heard Custom yet, this opening track will absolutely grab your undivided attention for the rest of the album’s duration.

Another notable track on this record is anchor single “Open Road”, a song with a rhythmically driving tempo and crunchy chugging guitars that really deliver the verses with punchy measures. Like the opening track, Lyon again serves up an anthemic chorus that is unwaveringly catchy and themed with clever lyrical outbursts. The wa-wa/crybaby guitar solo on this song is absolutely face-melting and several new elements are introduced on this track that really adds to the band’s overall distinctive Rock flavor. And that’s one notable factor of this record – each song brings something new to the table all while sustaining the perfect balance of consistency to give the band their own signature style that is completely their own. One more notable entry on this album is “Ten Years Gone”, a punchy tune with more subtle verses and atmospheric elements throughout the song’s structure. Lyons’ vocal harmonies in the chorus and octave-measures in the second verse are incredibly effective and showcases his vocal ability from other crucial angles. This song, just like the others mentioned, brings several new facets of the band’s songwriting structures while still maintaining their signature style that’s been made apparent since the opening track. This track is incredibly flavorful and is definitely a standout on the album altogether.

Overall, ‘V’ is an album that will definitely exceed expectations. It’s a record that balances both originality and familiarity in a way that will entice just about any listener to dive deeper into Custom’s discography and career altogether. It’s a record that has staying power, where it stays with you even long after it’s over – and you’ll definitely be coming back to it time and time again as one of your favorite releases in 2021 for the Rock spectrum. You can get your copy of ‘V’ now on Spotify, Apple Music, iTunes and any other digital music streaming platform. You’ll be more than happy that you did.


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