Julian Lennon Picks

julian new1"If I was gonna write again I had to live again I had to look deep inside myself and start again." So says Julian Lennon of his decision to return to the music industry after an absence of seven years.  Music - Photography - Documentary

Below Zero = huge fans.  Read and learn more of what goes on in Julian's world.

 

smolikAndrzej Smolik is a Polish musician, composer, music producer, and multi-instrumentalist. He began his career as a keyboard player in the band Wilki in 1993. Later he collaboatrted with Wilki’s vocalist, Robert Gawliński on the production of his solo album Solo. In 1996 and 1997 Smolik worked with the group Hey. He also collaborated with Hey’s vocalist Kasia Nosowska on her solo album Milena in 1998.

In following years he continued to work with Nosowska and Gawliński on their subsequent solo projects. He also worked with DJ Novika and with the group Myslovitz, Artur Rojek, Mika Urbaniak and Krzysztof Krawczyk. Smolik won the national “Fryderyk” award for composers in 2003 and 2004. And in 2004 he won a ‘Passport Award’ from the magazine Politika. His solo albums are Smolik (2001), Smolik 2 (2003) and 3 (2006).

Check out his latest video on our video page > Smolik

lovemotelThis week the frigid pick of the week goes out to the glam, rock, funky and fun sounds of Love Motel.  They hail from Geneva, Switzerland and three years ago released the critically acclaimed debut album "Après le paradis".   Love Motel is back on the scene with the new album Mind the Void and this week's pick is 21st Century Boy.

Invoking a full suite of portraits, Love Motel describes « his » 21st century through the eyes of a bunch of lost souls (wasted nerds, repentant machos, TV addicts, sadistic gigolos, former dictators and naughty astronauts) looking for salvation. And while the portraits that he paints aren’t that pretty, his sexy musical performance as well as his dark and ironic lyrics transform Mind the Void into an hypnotizing, beautiful and menacing soundtrack of now.

Mind the Void offers the same rich intensity as Love Motel’s former album, but meted out through a more mature and more cohesive sound that immediately grabs your attention. Andres Garcia’s skilful production keeps the tension bubbling just below the surface mixing glam rock guitars, booty basses and robotic rhythms bringing back something from the 80s, although contemporary textures always lurk beneath the surface of Mind the Void.

emzycollins1Emzy Collins is back again and we are happy to share his new EP that is out called "See This Through".  It is a collection of personal notes, artwork and music.  The main feature of the EP is actually a booklet, all of the artwork resembles a cycle or full season.  The book starts out with artwork of trees with leaves.  As you turn the pages and advance through the booklet the leaves go away.

There are translucent sheets having effects with words throughout the booklet playing off from the title "See This Through."  Additionally there is an album sized piece of art, also very personal and there is only a limited edition, each numbered and hand-written on the back of each.  The reason for the limited edition is because Emzy made each one of these by hand!

This week the "Pick of the Week" is for the rework of "Feel Your Love" who Emzy worked with Producer Andy Ross.  The rework offers more space and perspective into the track and if you get to listen to it on a stereo headset you will pick up many fine details within the music.

To see the making of "See This Through" as a video.

thomasstifflingtrioTrumpeter Thomas Siffling is an inherent part of the German jazz scene and because of his creative output it is impossible to imagine the scene without him. He is furthermore said to be a borderliner between various genres and has committed himself to combining electronic elements and influences within a jazz context. With the latest album “Cruisen” the Thomas Siffling Trio (Markus Faller, Jens Loh) presents a delightful easy going Nu Jazz with a high musical ambition and substance. In short, a young and contemporary German Jazz music to relax, groove and feel good!

After being granted the jazz award of Baden-Wuerttemberg in 2005, Thomas Siffling drew attention to his CD “Kitchen Music” (released in January 2007), by touring not only in Germany but also throughout Europe and North America.  In November 2008 the Trio made various festival guest performances in India and Sri Lanka.  Finally in January 2009 the new Trio Album “Cruisen” was released and presented to the public in the course of an ample tour throughout Germany.

lalmeri

It's no coincidence that Nancy Kaye, Ireesh Lal and Carmen Rizzo chose to name their groundbreaking collaboration after the ancient Sufi folk song, "Lal Meri," an interpretation which closes the trio's seductive and refreshing Six Degrees Records debut.

"The message of the song is unifying different people from different cultures and beliefs," says Nancy, the mystery-laden honey-and-sand voiced siren, with a gift for expansive turns of phrases and indelible melodies. "Why can't we basically be together as one? It's a beautiful message."

If ever a band represented such ideals, it’s Lal Meri, with each musician coming in from different backgrounds, cultures and musical sensibilities, all combined into a unified, vibrant whole. Nancy’s singing and writing – both urgent and timeless – have powered her forays in pop (a 2002 debut album for Island/Def Jam Records) and jazz (her recent, saucy tour de force Luckiest Girl), both under the artist name Rosey.

Ireesh’s multiple instrumental, composing and arranging talents have been spotlighted in his previous bands Hot Sauce Johnson and Animastik. Carmen’s global-conscious sense has brought him to the forefront as a writer, producer and remixer with Seal, Coldplay, Paul Oakenfold, Jem and countless others, while his expansive vision is at the core of his own wide-ranging album and his work as a member of the groundbreaking world-fusion act Niyaz.

 

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