STRUTTER'ZINE Review from Holland
(Points: 8.0 out of 10)
Michael Owens "The Right Kind Of Crazy" (Blackberry Way Records/USA Import)
Singer/songwriter/guitarist MICHAEL OWENS has a long music history behind him going back to the 1970s when he was part of the band FINGERPRINTS. Fast forward to 2019 and a new solo-album is out. Musically speaking it is a nice mixture of Classic Rock, Americana and Power pop. Michael has a very recognizable voice that reminds me a bit of 1960s VAN MORRISON or a very raw ALICE COOPER, while musically it reminds me a bit of ELVIS COSTELLO, NICK LOWE and STEVE EARLE. It is actually a melting pot of all kinds of 60s-80s pop/rock styles, so it falls somewhere in between all of the previously mentioned acts. Not bad at all, with highlights like the more ballad orientated songs such as Old Man Joad that recalls a bit of classic BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN. I think by now you more or less get the idea of how this sounds, but it's best to check it out for yourself.
STRUTTER'ZINE Review from Holland
(Points: 8.1 out of 10)
The April Fools 'Third' (Blackberry Way Records/USA Import)
What if NEIL YOUNG would join FLEETWOOD MAC and record an album with B.O.C. backing up here and there, well, then it might sound like THE APRIL FOOLS latest release Third. This band hails from Minneapolis, MN and is formed around Brian Drake (vocals, guitar), Brad McLemore (guitar, vocals, harmonica), Terri Owens (guitar, mandolin, vocals), Ben Kaplan (drums, vocals) and Scott Hreha (bass guitar). The band previously released two albums, the self-titled debut The April Fools, Colorwheel and Third is as expected their 3rd release. The included music is nice mixture of Classic Rock, Bluesy Rock, Americana and Roots Rock, with a clear focus on strong melodies in each and every song. For example there is a gorgeous semi-rock ballad called Long Shadows that sounds like a rockier version of CALEXICO, which is of course a big compliment for THE APRIL FOOLS! Other highlights are rockers like Bell Of Stone, My Back Pages (BOB DYLAN cover), the heavy Blues Rocker 15 Minutes and You Make My Heart Beat Too Fast.
STRUTTER'ZINE Review from Holland
Points: 8.9 out of 10)
The Litter "Future Of The Past" (Blackberry Way Records/USA Import)
The Minnesota/USA based band THE LITTER was quite successful 50 years ago in the 1960s with their Punk/Garage Rock hit single Action Woman. In The late 1960’s they followed up Action Woman with the LP’s Distortions & Emerge. Emerge achieved gold status selling over 500,000 units. Although they released more records and made several reunions throughout the following decades, they never achieved the same success as they did with Emerge. However in 2019 they released a very strong new Classic Rock album, which consists of newly written original material from the band, plus a strong cover version of Stephen Stills song For What It’s Worth. The result is a surprisingly strong record that can easily be called Classic Rock in its purest format, reminding me of THE WHO, THE YARDBIRDS and LED ZEPPELIN. Most of the tunes are rockers, with a few slower songs, such as Stay With Me, a 1960s inspired rock/ shuffle-ballad that has hit potential written all over it. The band is at their best during the Classic Rock songs like Crazy Horse Legend, ITSNOT, the instrumental The Mummy's Revenge and the sensational You Can't Feel Love (LIZZY meets B.O.C.). The original singer MARK GALLAGHER sadly died in 2009. His replacement RONNIE LONG (of KATZ BAND) is a very good singer, which can be heard clearly during the calmer acoustic piece Voids Can Be Filled and the aforementioned rockers. Classic Rock fans need to check out this album a.s.a.p. if they long for a nostalgic ride back to the 1970s sound of bands like THE WHO, BLUE OYSTER CULT, LED ZEPPELIN, THIN LIZZY...
On Sunday March 8th @ 2:00 The Litter & Blackberry Way Records are hosting a celebration for the release of the new album “Future Of The Past” by The Litter @ Mancini’s 531 7th Street West St Paul 55102. We are not only celebrating the release of the record but also 60 years of Minnesota music. Come mingle with band members representing over 80 iconic Minnesota bands including members of The Trashmen, Badfinger, The Suicide Commandos and many more. Help us celebrate the great music made in Minnesota over the last 60 years. Michael Warre WEQY 104.7 FM will be spinning tracks & Mancini’s will provide appetizers.
Tom Murray & Michael Owens will also be guests on Mikes MN Music Warrehouse WEQY 104.7 FM Thur March 5th 8 to 10:00 Go To WEQY.org & Click On Stream Live!
Mike will be bringing some previously unreleased tracks by Brian Drake's Idiot Savant & Robert Wilkinson as well as the recently remastered "Hands Of Time" by Tom Bright
Future Of The Past Garners Airplay Around The World 12/9/19
Jamerzine Radio/Publication features The Litter on their Dailey Dose https://jammerzine.com/?s=The+Litter
Radio ads promised in the coming days include: Downunda Thunda Radio Australia, Leaf Pile Radio Berlin CT, Live From The Rock N Roll Ranch Canadensis PA, The Independent Music Show UK, Celtica Radio South Wales, 420 Radio/ Canadian Cannabis Radio Ontario, WDYN Dynamic Independent Radio Rochester NY.
Strutt ‘Zine from The Netherlands is also is promising a review in the near future.
The April Fools & Michael Owens
Check out GREAT reviews of both records!!! 11/12/19
Thank You Darren Tracy @ http://zacharymule.com/wp/?p=4448 for the great in depth reviews of The April Fools "Third" & Michael Owens "The Right Kind Of Crazy"
Interview, Airplay & Quotes FUTURE OF THE PAST 11/15/19
Warner Lewis will interview Tom Murray of THE LITTER airing Sunday Nov 17th @ 7AM central on 1320 KLWN-AM & 101.7 FM Lawrence Kansas. The interview will run for 20 minutes & is set to end with a cut from the new album FUTURE OF THE PAST. You can stream it here: https://www.klwn.com/lewis-at-large-w-warner-lewis/
WMPG Portland Maine, OA Radio Jacksonville Florida, Eat This! Rock & Metal WebRadio/Blog along with WEQY locally has also added the record. Metal Video Beaverton Oregon will add the video in the coming weeks.
"The musicianship, vocals, arrangements and production on this album are first class. I was highly impressed."
Tom Campbell/Minniepaul music
"The album opens with Something’s Coming. This a superb track. Just what I was expecting the band would do very, very, very, well. It Kicks! “Voids Can Be Filled” is among my favorites! This is a true Psychedelic throwback. With its subject matter, tempo variations and word play! Just fantastic"
Mike Warre/ Host of WEQY's Mike's Minnesota Music Warrehouse
"Got my copy of the Litter's new record, "Future of the Past!" Love it! Tom Murray has hit it out of Met Stadium! When is the dance party?? A must have for all you Cats and Kittens!"
Jeanne Anderson/Twin Cities Music Highlights