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50. Propagandhi – Failed States

[Official Site] // [Spotify] // [Facebook]

Failed States is Propagandhi’s bitter album. The Canadian punk rockers have always worn their angry, fist-raising politics on their sleeves – a particularly effective formula when mixed with the band’s more recent thrash-punk inclinations – but this time around it’s accompanied by a rather stark sense of futility. Guided by figures such as Chris Hedges, Failed States lambastes the vapid state of affairs which places more value in material culture, political, and religious talking points over genuine discussion. It isn’t hard to find reason for their cynicism; months ago, the band posted an interview of Hedges conducted by Fox News wannabe, Kevin O’Leary. Rather than engage Hedges in a discussion of the Occupy Movement, O’Leary was content in resorting to ad hominem attacks and semantic traps. It was an embarrassing display from what is supposed to be a serious political talk show, and for a band that’s built their career on promoting political activism and intelligent discussion it has to be a bitter pill to swallow. Consequently, much of the Failed States features diatribes against such stupidity, political apathy, and inaction; where previous albums parried against ideological opponents, this time around Propagandhi lament the seeming lack of engagement outside major social movements such as Occupy, YoSoy132, and 15-M. Propagandhi accentuates this with a ferocious…

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So, I have neither the time nor the ability to be creative with my list this year, but there were definitely things that are worth sharing so here goes (just about) nothing…

Note: I used Spotify links because it’s free and you don’t have to sign up as long as you use your Facebook log-in.

50. Moonspell – Alpha Noir

[Review] // [Spotify]

This is Moonspell stripped down to their core. There’s no gothic overtones, no keyboard cheese, no female vocals and the vocalist’s deep goth vocals probably make up no more than 30 seconds of the entire album. Instead the band deliver a blackened thrash version of their former selves, full of heavy riffs and death/black growls. Definitely recommended for those into the blackened metal style (notice I didn’t say black metal), even if you’ve hated everything else this band has ever done.

49. Lunic – Future Sex Drama

[Review] // [Spotify]

This is like semi-atmospheric electro-pop. Kind of like t.A.T.u meets Delerium or something similar. It’s catchy as hell and has little flourishes that set it apart from your average electro-pop.

48. The Saddest Landscape – After the Lights

[Review] // [Spotify]

There is just something about the way…

Amia Venera Landscape’s 2010 release, The Long Procession, was one of the surprise releases of that year. It probably could have even been near the top of our year-end lists if not for its mid-December release date. Its mixture of post metal, post hardcore, math metal, and ambience was expertly done (with some room for improvement, of course) and still generates discussion nearly two years later. The song that hit most people the hardest was the opening track, ‘Empire’, and this is the video for that song. Prepare to have your face melted… or something ;)

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NOTE: In other news, the band has just announced through their Facebook page that they’re going to be releasing more music this winter:

Hi everyone, after several months of almost silence, it’s time to see where we stand!

During this period we’ve been working on a lot of brand new music. The composition process took different directions, in terms of sounds and respective approaches, and it led us to create something around eighty songs of very different genres.
All this material will be recorded along the next three years, and the first of these releases is supposed to be out this Winter. According to this we won’t be going to play any live show for a while.

In the meanwhile, check out our previously unreleased video for the song ‘Empire’, taken from our first album ‘The Long Procession’.

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Veronika’s promotional material calls her music “atmospheric space pop with dark electro vibes, symphonic overtones and a truly haunting voice… A dream-like fantasy, ambient light shows and an electrifying, sexually charged stage presence. In developing her own ethereal but edgy identity, Vesper has drawn on the left-field character of Björk, Depeche Mode, Radiohead and David Bowie, to name a few. Visually, her style calls on designers such as Alexander McQueen, Vera Wang and Versace.” Admittedly, I’ve only heard the song from this video, but it seems to be pretty accurate.

Veronika Vesper became a classically trained musician at a very young age — even touring as first flutist for a symphony orchestra when she was still in her teens. She eventually became more interested in electronic music and started to develop her singing voice, as well. The end result is the song ‘Bleeding Desert’. This is just the beginning for Veronika Vesper as she is currently working on her debut album with multi-platinum selling songwriter Martin Sutton and producer Venom One.

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Veronika Vesper
Offiicial Site // Twitter // Facebook

1) Everything Becomes Whole

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2) Hiding ft. John Andrews (Loudboy)

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3) Say No More

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4) Don’t Let it Bring You Down

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5) Sycamore Trees

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Most people that frequent this site know that Sarah Fimm is an artist that just never seems to quit. She has explored everything from minimalist trip-hop to full band-oriented, 70s inspired alt.…


Some of you may remember me gushing over a band named Thera. I reviewed their debut album and heaped all kinds of praise upon it. I even got permission to stream three of their songs on the site (a stream that’s still active). It was basically a hype-machine blitz on my part, and despite those that pushed back and told me I was ‘overrating’ the album, I still don’t regret it and If This is the End still stands as one of my favorite albums of that year. Apparently, the band are just about set to release a new EP and ‘We Were a Housefire’ is the first track from the album. It definitely picks up right where the previous release left off, but it is also shows a definite improvement in sound and song writing. Of course, the thing that still lends Thera most of their unique sound is the vocals of Stephanie Plate. Her voice has definitely become a little more polished compared to the debut album, but enough of her personal flair is still there. Take a listen and then check out the three songs from the previous release too.

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Enter now for your chance to win an exciting gift pack from Linkin Park to celebrate the June 26th release of their new album LIVING THINGS. One lucky winner will receive a CD copy of LIVING THINGS signed by the band, a pair of Rob Bourdon signature Vater drumsticks, a Linkin Park t-shirt and band stickers & buttons! Also included is a one year membership to the official Linkin Park fan club:  LP Underground. Members receive early entrance to Linkin Park shows, chances for Meet & Greets, access to concert pre-sale tickets and best seats, exclusive music, live video chats with band members and much more.  http://lpunderground.com/

The only thing you have to do is e-mail us (at Sputnikreviews at gmail dot com) and let us know who you think it would be cool to see Linkin Park collaborate with and why.  The contest is open to U.S. and Canadian residents only and will end on July 9th. Please use the words Linkin Park Contest as your subject line.

Multi-platinum, Grammy award-winning band Linkin Park will release their forthcoming album LIVING THINGS (Machine Shop Records / Warner Bros. Records) on June 26th.  The album is spirited, energetic, daring and unafraid to hybridize the past, present and future: http://bit.ly/JGZzmX.  Pre-order LIVING THINGS via: http://livingthings.linkinpark.com/ and check out the exciting promotions surrounding the album below:

Photographer: James Minchin

Linkin Park on Honda Civic Tour With Incubus

Linkin Park will be co-headlining the 2012 Honda Civic Tour with Incubus,…

Congrats to logman456 for winning the Death Grips album giveaway. Your prize should be headed to you shortly.

Sputnikmusic is currently holding a Linkin Park contest. One lucky winner will receive a CD copy of LIVING THINGS signed by the band, a pair of Rob Bourdon signature Vater drumsticks, a Linkin Park t-shirt and band stickers & buttons! Also included is a one year membership to the official Linkin Park fan club:  LP Underground. Members receive early entrance to Linkin Park shows, chances for Meet & Greets, access to concert pre-sale tickets and best seats, exclusive music, live video chats with band members and much more. So, go here for more details.

Here’s a list of major new releases for the week of June 12, 2012. Please feel free to request reviews for any of the following albums from staff or contributors.

Assemblage 23 – Bruise (Metropolis Records)
Azealia Banks – 1991 (Interscope Records)
BoDeans – American Made (Megaforce)
Bouncing Souls – Comet (Rise Records)
Celldweller – Wish Upon a Blackstar (FiXT Music)
Charli XCX – You’re the One (IAMSOUND)
Alice Cohen – Pink Keys (Olde English Spelling Bee)
The dB’s – Falling Off The Sky (Bar None Records)
Decoded Feedback – disKonnekt (Metropolis Records)
Dent May – Do Things (Paw Tracks)
Eternal Tapestry – Dawn In 2 Dimensions (Digitalis)
Friends – Manifest! (Fat Possum)
Future of the Left – The Plot Against Common Sense (Xtra Mile)
Giant Sand – Tucson (Fire Records)
Grace Potter & the Nocturnals –…

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Lunic – Far Away

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Lunic is an all-female electro-pop band from New York City, that released their first album, Lovethief, back in 2009. After its release they were able to perform with such diverse artists as Moby, Mindless Self Indulgence, Meiko, Company of Thieves, Dredg and many more. The trio consists of songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Kaitee Page, electric midi violinist Megan Berson, and live drummer Masha Mayer and they combine to create a fairly unique style that includes keyboards, violins, guitars, effects, loops, and midi controllers to skillfully and carefully construct each track from the ground up.

With a ton of live shows under their collective belts, Lunic are now set to release their second album, Future Sex Drama, in September. ‘Far Away’ is first single from that upcoming album and if it is any indication of the album as a whole, it will be another dose of moody electro-pop. Lunic are definitely recommended to those into Phantogram, Lykke Li, Metric, Ladytron or The xx.

“All-girl New Yorkers Lunic make distinctive and sultry psychedelic indie with hints of downbeat British electronica acts The xx and Portishead. Mournful dashes of violin and melodic lead guitar flourish.”
- NXNE

LINKS:
OFFICIAL SITE
FACEBOOK
TWITTER
BANDCAMP

Here’s a list of major new releases for the week of June 05, 2012. Please feel free to request reviews for any of the following albums from staff or contributors.

The Agonist – Prisoners (InsideOut Music)
Architects – Daybreaker (Century Media)
A Silent Film – Sand & Snow (Self Released)
The Bamboos – Medicine Man (Tru Thoughts)
Be’lakor – Of Breath And Bone (Self Released) – Kyle Ward
Eric Benet – The One (Jordan House Records)
Bigg Jus – Machines That Make Civilization Fun (Mush Records)
Big K.R.I.T. – Live from the Underground (Def Jam Records)
William Brittelle – Loving the Chambered Nautilus [Digital Only] (New Amsterdam)
Bobby Brown – The Masterpiece (Bronx Bridge Entertainment)
Candlemass – Psalms For The Dead (Napalm Records)
Brandi Carlile – Bear Creek (Columbia)
Chris Robinson Brotherhood – Big Moon Ritual (Silver Arrow Records)
Circus Maximus – Nine (Frontiers Records)
Shawn Colvin – All Fall Down (Nonesuch)
The Cory Smoot Experiment – When Worlds Collide (Metal Blade)
Crocodiles – Endless Flowers (Frenchkiss)
Curren$y – The Stoned Immaculate (Warner Bros.)
Def Jef – Just A Poet With Soul (Delicious Vinyl)
d’Eon – LP (Hippos in Tanks)
DeWalta – Wander {EU} (Haunt Music)
Dntel – Aimlessness (Pampa Records)
Fear Factory – The Industrialist (Candlelight) – Deviant
Hawthorne Heights – Hope [EP] (Cardboard Empire)
The Hives – Lex Hives (Disques Hives) – Rudy Klapper
Kelly Hogan – I Like To Keep Myself In Pain (ANTI Records)
Alan Jackson – Thirty Miles West (Capitol)
The Jacka – The Sentence (SICCNESS)
Japandroids – Celebration Rock (Polyvinyl Records)
Kool Keith – Love…

Art By Numbers’ debut album, Reticence: The Musical, will be streaming on the site until the end of Tuesday, so if you haven’t checked it out yet, you better do it soon. They have been compared to everyone from The Human Abstract and Protest the Hero to Coheed & Cambria and The Mars Volta. Give it a listen here.

Here’s a list of major new releases for the week of May 29, 2012. Please feel free to request reviews for any of the following albums from staff or contributors.

2:54 – 2:54 (Fat Possum Records)
Art By Numbers – Reticence: The Musical (Art By Numbers)
Wade Bowen – The Given (Sony Nashville)
Crystal Bowersox – Once Upon A Time (Crystal Bowersox)
Brotherhood of the Lake – Desperation Is The English Way Vol.1 (Thirty Days Of Night Records)
Delain – We Are The Others (Roadrunner/Warner)
Dogjaw – Pilot (Solidarity Recordings)
The Dig – Midnight Flowers (Buffalo Jump Records)
Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros – Here (Community Music)
Melody Gardot – The Absence (Verve)
Gotthard – Firebirth (Nuclear Blast Records)
Kreator – Phantom Antichrist (Nuclear Blast Records)
Ladyhawke – Anxiety (Universal UK) – Davey Boy
Malice – New Breed Of Godz (Steamhammer/SPV)
Millencolin – Melancholy Connection [CD/DVD] (Burning Heart)
Marissa Nadler – The Sister (Box of Cedar)
Travis Porter – From Day 1 (RCA)
Public Image Ltd – This Is PiL (PiL Official)
Gemma Ray – Island Fire (Bronzerat Records)
Saint Etienne – Words and Music by Saint Etienne (Universal UK)
Sarah Jezebel Deva – Malediction EP [Digital…

Are you Canadian? Do you like Death Grips or just enjoy free stuff? Well, here is your chance to win the most recent CD by hip-hop artist Death Grips. We have a copy of The Money Store to give away to one lucky Canadian fan. The only thing that you need to do is use the words ‘Death’ and ‘Grips’ in a sentence (paragraph or story if you’re feeling overzealous). Make it witty, funny or sarcastic — the end goal is to be amusing. Contest is open to Canadian residents only and will end on May 29th.

E-mail your submissions here (make sure the subject is “Death Grips Contest”):

Sputnikreviews at gmail dot com

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Death Grips – The Money Store
Released on April 24th through Epic Records
[iTunes] [Amazon CD] [Amazon MP3]

Sputnikmusic is streaming the upcoming album, Reticence: The Musical, by progressive metal artists Art By Numbers. They have been compared to everyone from The Human Abstract and Protest the Hero to Coheed & Cambria and The Mars Volta. Give it a listen here.

We are also hosting a give-away for hip-hop artist, Death Grips. We’ve got two copies of their album, The Money Store, to give away. Go here for details.

Here’s a list of major new releases for the week of May 22, 2012. Please feel free to request reviews for any of the following albums from staff or contributors.

12 Stones – Beneath The Scars (Executive Music Group) – Davey Boy
16Volt – Skin [Re-Issue] (Metropolis Records)
Kris Allen – Thank You Camellia (RCA)
Blue Foundation – In My Mind I Am Free (Dead People’s Choice)
The Bunny The Bear – The Stomach For It (Victory Records)
Burzum – Umskiptar (Byelobog Productions) – Kyle Ward
Children Of Bodom – Holiday At Lake Bodom (15 Years Of Wasted Youth) (Fontana Universal)
The Cult – Choice Of Weapon (Cooking Vinyl)
Delta Moon – Black Cat Oil (Red Parlor)
Diablo Swing Orchestra – Pandora’s Pinata (Sensory Records)
Electric Wizard – Witchcult Today (Candlelight)
El-P – Cancer for Cure (Fat Possum Records) -- Sobhi Yousseff
Tolga Fidan – Rogue (Vakant)
Freak Kitchen – Land of the Freaks (The Laser’s Edge)
Garbage – Not…

**Note: The stream has reached the end, but the album can be purchased at the following locations:

Artist Merch Store / iTunes Music Store / Amazon MP3

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Art By Numbers haven’t even released their debut album, and they’re already receiving a lot of attention. This attention probably initially stemmed from the band’s connection with The Human Abstract, but there’s definitely more to it than that. For those that are curious, Brett Powell (The Human Abstract’s drummer) is the band’s manager and Art by Numbers guitarists Victor Corral and Dustin Georgeson studied with A.J. Minette (also of The Human Abstract). The thing is that any thoughts that the band might be skating by on posts such as the one on The Human Abstract Facebook page that declared Art By Numbers, “the most exciting up and coming progressive band out there,” are put to rest once you hear the album. The band’s upcoming debut, Reticence: The Musical, is deserving of the attention that it is getting regardless of any extraneous circumstances.

This Fresno, California five-piece definitely bring a technical, yet melodic, style of progressive metal that will have people comparing them to everything from The Human Abstract and Protest the Hero to Coheed & Cambria. The thing is that they still have their own sound. For one, the band bring a prominent sense of melody and catchy vocal arrangements that occasionally remind me…

Funeral Club – Waves & Waves

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What is there to say about this song? I’ve never heard of the band before, but I’m digging what they’re doing here. It’s like a cross between trip hop, chill jazz and gothic rock. The song comes from the band’s three-song EP of the same name and was released through Pale Noir Records. The other two songs even seem to add just the slightest bit of shoe gaze to the mix — good stuff.

Official Facebook Page

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