From April 4th to June 4th The Ripple Effect ran a campaign on the excellent online music website ReverbNation (www.reverbnation.com). This campaign allowed any artist or band registered with ReverbNation to submit their music to The Ripple Effect for possible review on the site and airplay on The Ripple Effect radio shows. When all was said and done we had received 4,799 submissions! Incredible! The purpose of this column is to highlight those artists and bands whose musical submissions I accepted as being worthy of consideration. While these are not reviews per se, I’m going to provide a brief rundown of what to expect from each artist/band, a sample when available, and a link to check out more on their corresponding ReverbNation page.
Dale J. Gordon– This artist from Trenton, NJ covers quite a lot of musical ground. His bio labels him as being a singer/songwriter which is something I had to listen to a few songs to validate. The submission I first listened to was fully electric with a Jimi Hendrix vibe, and it sounded good. Honestly I found the lyrics somewhat befuddling until I noticed the list of similar artists included Frank Zappa and Butthole Surfers. Apparently, this gentleman has released over 90 albums over the past 15 years! Prolific? I’d say so. Check him out.
ReverbNation Page – http://www.reverbnation.com/dalejgordon
Song Sample – U.S.A. http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=iimF1RzGa_c#!
Morgan Haner – Do you like your folk rock with no pretense? Fantastic, because this artist from Chicago, IL isn’t messing around with his music. There are no unnecessary bells and whistles. What we have here is simply a man, his voice, a guitar and a harmonica taking center stage. Yes there is a rhythm section at work, but they never take the attention of the listener away from Mr. Haner. When I listened to his submission I was immediately struck by how honest and forthright it sounded. Listen and see if you feel the same way.
ReverbNation Page – http://www.reverbnation.com/morganhaner
Song Sample – Changin’ The Locks http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=_gfDMDA59sk#!
Invisible Target– Coming from the musical hotbed of Austin, TX this trio is ready to excite large portions of the alternative rock community. After listening to their submission I believe that they are fully capable of this feat. What inspires this confidence you ask? Well their song combined indie rock, emo, a little shoegaze, and a hint of a harder edge to produce a sound that I’m sure will have a very broad appeal. Similar artists include Switchfoot, The Killers, and Panic at the Disco.
ReverbNation Page – http://www.reverbnation.com/invisibletarget
Song Sample – Sometimes http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=GcQMjyMAVNE#!
AtmAsfera – Well now, what do we have here? Alternative world music from Lviv, UA that’s what! This six member outfit really impressed me with their powerful song submission. My head was bobbing all throughout the song thanks to its tribal drumming, the driving guitar/bass line, and an enchanting flute coupled with haunting vocals. A second song picked up right where the first left off. Great stuff! Similar artists include Gogol Bordello, Sting, and Adele. Click on the link and listen folks.
ReverbNation Page – http://www.reverbnation.com/atmasfera
Song Sample – Bala http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=uLmBA1tOSY4#at=64
Starar – I’m always impressed when I listen to more than one song by an artist or band and while there is an identifiable element running throughout, each song sounds noticeably different from one another. This brother/sister duo out of Lincoln, UK nails this (as they describe it) “genre-schizophrenia”. Their newer material sticks pretty close to the pop country template. Similar artists include Colbie Calliat, Sara Bareilles, and Carrie Underwood. Exploring their older music however reveals much more variety.
ReverbNation Page – http://www.reverbnation.com/starar
Song Sample – Flawless http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=XbFjiVjess0
Lon Milo DuQuette– This veteran musician from Costa Mesa, CA provided me with a real breath of fresh musical air thanks to his submission. What a wonderful, easygoing, vintage sound! The song built itself around Mr. DuQuette’s laid-back guitar playing and smooth vocals, but what really set it apart was the brass accompaniment in the background. Very enjoyable! Even better, other songs I listened to sounded just as good. Similar artists include Leon Redbone, Leonard Cohen, and Tom Waits.
ReverbNation Page – http://www.reverbnation.com/lonmiloduquette
Song Sample – Never Got Over You http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=-CXsuQwWVl0