Exclusive Artist Review: Rootspence & The Groove Makers – “Judgement Day” LP

Now here’s a group you’ll rarely discover in your lifetime. A band of versatility, nostalgia and unwavering talent that showcases multiple angles of their signature stylization, Rootspence & The Groove Makers are a seven-member Mozambican powerhouse tackling their own crossbreed of Reggae/Pop/R&B and Fusion; done in a way that is both multilayered and multifaceted. And if this description entices you, then you will lovingly feel the bliss of this group’s musical power with the fruition of their latest 8-track juggernaut Judgement Day.

With their formation setting its groundwork in 2015 by Helio “Rootspence” Sixpence (vocalist/frontman) in Maputo, Mozambique, The Groove Makers quickly began hitting the ground running and have no intention of stopping anytime soon. The Groove Makers are very well known for their jazzy, African-guitar style and pop approach to reggae featuring live musical instruments. The fusion imprint results from the diverse rhythmic mastery from the band members, entailing Hard Rock, Gospel, Afro-fusion, Kizomba, Jazz and Hip-hop. And when you put this multi-genre concoction together, you get Judgement Day. Eight songs with top notch production and performance value with more layers and hooks to go around. With undeniably catchy choruses embracing every track, it’s songs like “Everything”, “My Heart” and “Beautiful Smile” that truly give The Groove Makers the staying power; the power to stay with you even after the song is over, because you’ll be getting these choruses completely stuck in your head with no escape.

The musicianship factors are completely off the charts with this album. With smooth bass lines, a tight-knit rhythm section with soulful anthemic vocal energy and every other additive each member brings to the table, Judgement Day simply is a record of not just pure talent, but perfectionism too. Every nook and cranny is covered, and with slick guitar progressions and stylistic keyboard parts with on-the-mark backup vocals, Judgement Day also proves that the band is fully comprised of not just top of the line musicians, but principal songwriters as well. Whether it’s on a cruise ship or stadium, The Groove Makers have put together a wholesome sound that never leaves a stone unturned, and that’s exactly what is comprised on Judgment Day.

Throughout their five year career, the band has already acquired a vast array of accomplishments including a 2020 WAM Award Nominee (Best Reggae Music), 7 Times Reverb Nation Featured Artist, Selected for Global Home Music Fest, SongDew TV, Brews Radio, and several others. Rootspence & The Groove Makers are one of those bands you become stoked about after discovering them. And after you take a listen to Judgment Day yourself, you’ll see (and hear) exactly why. The album is currently available on Spotify, Apple Music, Deezer, and several other digital music streaming platforms.

For Roots the most rewording thing in the word is “that feeling, you know… when you look deep into someone’s eyes and you just feel great… you don’t care about what you lost because you believe sharing, giving and mending souls is just the right and greatest thing to do”. Baptized Roots as translation of his reasoning style. Paradoxically idealist and man with feet on the ground, he advocates love, respect, compassion, harmony, equality and peace. -Rootspence


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Exclusive Review: In Your Grave – “Enemy Lines” EP

When it comes to an in-your-face hard hitting rhythm section, blistering guitars and brutal vocals reminiscent of Phil Bozeman similarities, that’s when you know you have something truly special. And that my friends, is Utah County ball busters In Your Grave. A band that not only formed throughout many other members from their respective scene, but a perfect one at that. As far as we see it – these guys are an absolute all star lineup. And amazingly, have only been active for just a year. That’s why our ears couldn’t quite believe what we were hearing.

Looking for heavy? Check. Looking for crushing drum grooves? Check. Blend in some seriously high gained, crisp guitar tones, bone crushing bass parts and fire breathing screams, and In Your Grave is in your radar. Enemy Lines, which just recently released on December 20th, is comprised of five strongly put-together tracks from ridiculously talented band members that delve into heavy territories that draw the perfect line between metal radio rock stations and a stylization that just might make it too brutal. And trust me, that’s a compliment. Intro tracks like “Mushroom Cloud” instantly give you that goosebumpy vibe of just where this track is gonna lead. Its drawn out build up is ominous, visceral and truly encompasses an aura of both curiosity and anticipation at the same time. And by the time the vocals burst in, both ends provide that satisfactory – we are going for a ride and it’s one that is not going to be slowing down anytime soon.

Subsequent tracks like “MKultra” and title track “Enemy Lines” use similar formulas but actually do more in solidifying their signature sound than anything. The pounding rhythm section really carries the band forward and assists with providing that brutality a band like In Your Grave has manifested into; except this time a lot more versatility, multifaceted vocal deliveries and guitar chord techniques have been implemented, adding to the ingredients that have already given this band their own calibre among other bands with a similar aura. But make no mistake – these guys have something going just for them, and will be a very tough act to follow after shows.

Last two tracks “Foundations” and “Establishment” are personal favorites for sure. From anvil-hitting tempo changes, synth parallels and all around additional elements, these two hit just as hard and also add levels of intrigue we hoped to hear at some point. First of all, everyone loves a furious breakdown, and these closing tracks have plenty of that. Secondly, guitar intros on tracks like closer “Establishment” is the kind of garnishment that could easily throw this record into whole new levels; and it does. What begins may end differently but everything in between ties it all together – just like this entire EP does. It’s a brutal set of 5 tracks that grab you by the throat and refuse to let go.

It’s been quite some time since we have actually run into an album like Enemy Lines, but once you take a listen yourself, that same blown-away feeling will commence. It may not be heavy enough for White Chapel, but definitely surpasses Killswitch Engage easily; even though I love both of those bands. You will not be disappointed with In Your Grave and you’ll be kicking yourself in the ass for not discovering them earlier. You can pick up a copy of the EP on Spotify, Apple Music, iTunes, and any other digital music streaming platforms.


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Exclusive Artist Interview: Winchester 7 & the Runners

When it comes to solid rockers like Winchester 7 & the Runners, a truly epic and international projectional form of musical magic would eventually manifest as the centerpiece to bring a brilliant entity together through both talent and dedication. Reminiscent of industry classic heavyweights like The Rolling Stones, The Black Keys and a slew of others with a similar calibre, each member of the band’s personal influences would eventually get each key player to find destiny to cross paths to begin a signature sound that is insatiably unique and versatile. Basically, W7 & the Runners would seek musical refuge, but there’s a long story involved. And today, we get the opportunity to ask them some relevant questions about all things band and member related, and are more than excited to do so. But first, let’s give some insight into the bands origins, in-betweens; past present and future by taking a glance into their respected bio.

When Phil Voorhees (bass) and Jack Kane (drums) decided to pull a runner, they didn’t expect that the one to come after them would be Winchester 7 (vocals, ukulele). None of them imagined that when their paths finally crossed, a few bass notes and halting drum beat would be met with a rocking ukulele reply, vocal harmony, and…music. Together, Winchester 7 & the Runners, have since found that a forgotten world, beyond the dome welcomes their music and films even as their friendship grows. Out of Atlanta, Georgia-based (home to Winchester 7), Sanctuary Studio; though runners, Voorhees now resides in Amsterdam and Kane is itinerant within the United Kingdom; the trio deliver their unique blend of indie garage rock with alternative, classic, and surf influences.


How many years have you guys been active?

Well, despite purposeful appearances “we” are a one-man band and have been active since about 2017.

Where are you guys currently based out of? And how is the scene out there?

Atlanta, GA though our bio includes bassist, Phil Voorhees being out of Amsterdam and drummer, Jack Kane, being itinerant to the United Kingdom. Overall, things are quarant-errific, though I’m hopeful for things to become more typically active in 2021.

How’d you guys come up with your band name?

Well, I’m Winchester 7 and the story goes that Phil and Jack were pulling a runner; but, when I caught up with them, we decided to form a band instead of returning to our dome.

You guys have a vast array of versatility, what are some of your guys personal musical influences?

Thank you! I’d say we’re heavily Beatles influenced, Paul McCartney, particularly. But, we most certainly draw upon other classic rock, post-punk, Brit pop, and alternative rock.

•What’s one of the best and worst shows you’ve played since your formation?

Well, due to apparent reasons we have moreseo focused on recording and music video production, to date. As such, most of our gigs are rather intimate affairs and have only suffered a few embarrassingly stray notes.

What genre(s) would you consider your band? Shed a little light on that.

We call it “Indie ukulele rock”. It’s certainly rock, but we like to remind you of the ukulele as you’re unlikely to otherwise notice it by listening alone.

How many releases have you guys put out this far? And what do you have set for the future?

Argos Holiday is our third EP release. After a short holiday break, we expect to head straight back into the studio to begin work on our follow-up.

What would you consider your best release so far?

Well, it’s hard to pick favorites, but I’m rather proud of Dirty Laundry off our latest EP, Argos Holiday.

What message do you have for your fans? What should inspire them to listen to your tunes?

Stay safe, enjoy a happy holidays; and let’s all hope for a still happier, healthier new year.

Regarding our tunes, if our usual seven tracks of Argos Holiday aren’t enough, I hope that its bonus tracks including a cover of David Bowie’s Modern Love and the Stuart Epps (George Harrison, Elton John, Led Zeppelin, Oasis) mix of our Alfred Hitchcock inspired song, The Saint Simon Killer, will.

What can we expect from you guys in 2021?

Hopefully, our next EP and continued releases of original, companion music videos for each track including previews of the later release.


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