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ALBUM CAPSULES by Mark E. Waterbury

SKINDRED's MIKEY DEE by Mark E. Waterbury

Recording Engineer Don Casale

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Skindred - Babylon
Lava - 93304-2
It's hard to fathom a band that can shake the metal and reggae worlds until you listen to the debut from this British act. Bringing what acts like Bad Brains did into the twenty-first century, Skindred's unholy unity of metal, hip-hop, punk and reggae is powerful enough to melt speakers with innovation that clutches your senses. Frenetic vocalizing, sonic guitar work and thundering rhythms get Rastafied in just the right doses to ensnare fans of both genres with its fresh intensity. URL:



Yngwie Malmsteen - The Best Of Yngwie Malmsteen
Polydor - B0004062-02
Stunning guitar aerobics predictably dominate the 20th Anniversary compilation from Yngwie Malmsteen. Over the years he also created some solid rock songs, always backed by top musicians. Head bangers such as Deja-Vu, Heaven Tonight, and especially I'll See The Light Tonigh stand with some of the best rockers of the era. While the shredding Swede's guitar prowess is indisputable, we are reminded on this CD that his songwriting talents run deep as well. URL://


Banjo & Sullivan - The Ultimate Collection 1972-1978 / The Devil's Rejects Soundtrack
Hip-o Records - B0004842-02
The rediscovery of this humorous, raunchy, country duo continues over a quarter century after their tragic demise. If songs like I Don't Give A Truck,Dick Soup, and I'm Trying To Quit, But I Quit TryingÓ aren't classics yet, they will be as more folks get their fans on this disc. They are also one of the few acts to do justice to ÒFreebird, with a rollicking Bill Monroe inspired treatment of the immortal Skynyrd tune. Along with the wickedly funny lyrics, the duo proves that they were highly talented at writing and recording bluegrass-fueled country with high doses of delectable fingerwork on banjo and steel guitar. About to be chronicled in the Rob Zombie helmed flick The Devil's Rejects, whose soundtrack album includes classic rockers like ÒFunk 49,Midnight Rider and I Can't Quit You BabyÓ as well as some dialogue from the film, the renewed notoriety for this almost lost jewel will be a highly enjoyable and long overdue epitaph. URL:

James LaBrie - Elements Of Persuasion
Inside Out Records
Straying away from the Dream Theater fold for this project, vocalist James LaBrie still cranks out some heavy duty rock, with a bit less of the prog bombast and complex song structures. Still, the music is fairly intricate and carries a more modern metal bite. Witness the thrashy Crucify, and the techno fueled Alone. Lost is a surprising pop alt tune with a stripped down feel almost nodding towards Keane. DT fans will still love it and metal heads should eat this up as well. URL:



Roger Alan Wade - All Likkered Up
Dickhouse Productions
What would you expect from a veteran country songwriter whose cousin and producer for this CD is Johnny Knoxville? Laugh out loud hilarious and quite explicit, you almost forget in the first listen that there is some pretty decent country and folk music burbling in the back ground. Roger's voice is reminiscent of the late Waylon Jennings and the way he carries a tear jerking emotive quality while proffering gut busting lyrics is actually amazing. Banjo and Sullivan would be proud. URL: E-mail:



Arms of Kismet - Cutting Room Rug
The brainchild of songwriter Mark Doyon, Arms of Kismet has creates a surprising plethora of pop genres. The mosaic includes the Brit alt Outbound Train, psychedelic tinged Coil, the haunting folk ballad ÒLife Imitates and the blues/country ditty Listen (To This).Ó This may seem all over the map, but Mark keeps it together with his Beck meets Billy Bragg emotive croon and intelligent lyrics URL: E-mail:



Pistol Star - Crawl
Wax Orchard
There seem to be a lot of people influenced by Coldplay these days, just depends on what you do with it. Paul Kimble, songsmith behind Pistol Crawl leaves the scent of the Brit foursome across the eleven tracks of this album, but his own styles stand out wondrously. With a passionately honest voice and music that ranges from heartfelt balladic to mid tempo Dead inspired groove, this is vibrant, well-crafted music that will touch your soul and mind. URL: E-mail:


Sensation Junkies - Once For The Money
Sarathan RecordsÊ - sarathan 002
Minus the loud guitars that made the Jet City famous in the 90's, the music from this Seattle foursome is no less intense, but in a more subtle way. A bit of a Heartland rock feel, ethereal guitar work and potent but controlled rhythmic grooves allows the music to break molds yet stay familiar. Ingenious songwriting and the gritty vocal fervor of former 10 Minute Warning (Duff McKagan) vocalist Christopher Blue heighten the musical intrigue. URL: E-mail:




Thin Acid Angel - Underneath 8th Street
This San Francisco rock act takes the brash rock vibe of GNR and the edgy retro alt feel of the Pixies and interject it with some thoughtful lyrics and potent vocals. Devil's Ride is a gritty guitar fueled rocker, while ÒSix Billion Bags Of Broken GlassÓ starts with a rootsy feel before turning punkish. Vestiges of funk, psychedelia and even surf pop sneak in during strategic spots as well. A very innovative and high octane weaving of distinct but related rock styles. URL: E-mail:


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Copyright 2005 by Music Morsels,
a Serge Entertainment Publication.
Editor: Sandy Serge
Contributing Columnists/Writers:
Mark E. Waterbury, Scott Turner