Review: Coheed and Cambria – Vaxis II: A Window of the Waking Mind

It’s understandable if you weren’t able to fully connect or get into Coheed and Cambria before. Their dense stories about space odysseys and prog-tinged rock may have been a bit intimidating for casual fans to fully immerse themselves in. Luckily for fans who’d be willing to give Coheed another shot, Vaxis II: A Window of the Waking Mind is easily their most accessible set of songs in the past decade, and would be a perfect re-launching point to dive back into the world that this band has created. And for the longtime fans who have been along for the ride since the beginning, there’s so much to enjoy on this new record that should reinvigorate interest in the space rockers for the foreseeable future. The new record was co-produced by guitarist, lead vocalist and band leader Claudio Sanchez, as well as Zakk Cervini (Blink-182, Simple Plan, Bring Me The Horizon) whose contribution helps Coheed and Cambria find the perfect balance between their trademark sound, paired with vibrant pop elements. While making an effort to expand upon the universe created in The Armory Wars story arc, Coheed have simultaneously made their best album in quite some time that demands your immediate attention.

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Canadensis – “As The Fog Swallowed The Beacon’s Light” (Song Premiere)

Canadensis

Today I’m thrilled to share the fourth single from post-rock duo, Canadensis, from their upcoming record The Decades Apart Have Weathered Us Both, called “As the Fog Swallowed the Beacon’s Light.” The album was recorded live, with no overdubs, and only speaks to the power of the two musicians being in tune with each other to create beautiful art. Canadensis shared this about the latest single:

While the first three tracks of The Decades Apart Have Weathered Us both are from the perspective of the ego experiencing a fragmentation of the soul and the path that follows; ‘As the Fog Swallows the Beacon’s Light’ is a window into the perspective of the fragment, becoming an individual as time separates their existence from the collective. It explores a pensive space where the futility of the ritual of lighting a beacon is realized.

If you’re enjoying the direction the band took here, their new album will officially be released on July 29th.

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Sponsor: Baby Got Back Talk Release New Single

Baby Got Backtalk

Baby Got Back Talk have released their Wiretap Records debut single, “Model Minority,” to all streaming platforms. The track comes from the band’s forthcoming EP, Existential Shred, out September 9th. Vocalist/bassist G’Ra Asim says the tune is “a wry sendup of a classic hater’s lament, namely that marginalization is currency nowadays and social outgroups are fashionable. It’s a gripe that tends to reach your ears when you’re in a rock band that foregrounds queer punx and punx of color. We took that idea and ran with it: why not have a rallying cry [akin to Keri Hilson’s “Pretty Girl Rock”] repping all us twinkling tokens?”

Tuned Up writes: “The video is an homage to “I’m Not Okay (I Promise)” by My Chemical Romance, borrowing its juxtaposition of inspiring title cards between scenes of private school life. It’s not out of the question that “Model Minority” could become an anthem of similar importance for queer folks and POC in the punk scene today.”

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Review: Linkin Park – Living Things

Living Things was the fifth studio album from rap-rockers Linkin Park and would find the band doing further experimentation with their sound, and would become their fourth straight record to debut at the top of the Billboard 200. The set was co-produced by Mike Shinoda and veteran Rick Rubin, whom had previously collaborated on Minutes to Midnight and their expansive A Thousand Suns records. In a lot of ways, this album is usually the one I reach for the most when I’m looking for a quick encapsulation of everything Linkin Park did in their storied discography in a singular record. For casual fans of Linkin Park, many state that Living Things is one of their favorites, if not the favorite in their collection, and it’s easy to see why so many would gravitate to the sound they went for here. It’s very accessible, doesn’t include any filler, and delivers more often than not in a rewarding and consistent listening experience.

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Her Head’s On Fire – “Lexicon of Doubt” (Video Premiere)

Her Head's On Fire

Today is a great day to share the new music video from new rockers, Her Head’s On Fire, for their electric new single called “Lexicon of Doubt.” The band will be releasing their debut record entitled College Rock and Clove Cigarettes to make their unique stamp on the music scene. Lead vocalist Joseph Grillo had this to say about the latest single:

’Lexicon of Doubt,’ like most of my songs, is written directly to myself. They are desperate pleas to become a better person, or to finally shed the last remains of last year’s husk of skin and grow anew, open eyes, and feverishly excited like a child seeing the sunrise for the first time. Life seems to be mostly about adapting and pushing through to the next chapter. To see and overcome obstacles, to be a more improved version of yourself, or if I may be so bold to quote myself from my youth, to ‘learn to struggle.’

If you’re enjoying the new and exciting direction Her Head’s On Fire went with, you can pre-order their debut album here.

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Liner Notes (June 25th, 2022)

This week’s newsletter tries to make up for missing last week by being jam-packed with treats. We have brief first impressions of the new albums from The Midnight, The Wonder Years, The Interrupters, and Yours Truly, and we have some thoughts on other music and entertainment I’ve been enjoying the past couple of weeks. There’s also a playlist of ten songs I think are worth your time, and this week’s supporter Q&A post can be found here.

If you’d like this newsletter delivered to your inbox each week (it’s free and available to everyone), you can sign up here.

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