10 CD Reviews . . .

Train - California 37
American roots-pop-rockers, who stormed the charts with their 2001 hit CD Drops Of Jupiter, seems to have done a U-turn on their music and on their sixth studio CD, California 37, they are reinvigorated and bravely playing a band new territory. Their CDs after Drops was Jupiter was a bit bland, but the new one excites us! It's best to say that the CD delivers innocent excitement, showcasing Train’s wholly unpretentious approach and an evident passion for what they do.

Jason Mraz - Love Is a Four Letter Word
American singer/songwriter Jason Mraz is extremly chilled. on his new CD. We found him at his hippie-dippiest, peace-loving, live-in-the-now best. If you thought he was mellow before, just wait until you check out the new material. Jason is one singer who has always looked on the bright side of life and his music reflected this, as we find on his new CD. This is truly an awesome release that is an absolute must have for your CD collection.

Anthony Hamilton - Back To Love
The American R&B, and soul singer-songwriter, and record producer outdo himself on his fifth CD, Back To Love. The CD is a sterling continuation of the singer’s ever-widening palette. Where Hamilton’s past albums have lured in listeners with their slow, sensual pull, Back To Love grabs them outright with the soul man’s punchiest, most immediate batch of songs yet. He finds powerful common ground between vintage influences and modern production.

The Ting Tings - Sounds From Nowheresville
English duo had us bopping with their hits That's Not My Name and Fruit Machine. So we were ecstatic when we heard they are releasing a new cD, but now we actually regrets it. Sounds From Nowheresville is an awkward blend of arena rock, synth pop, dance, reggae, and, strangely enough, folk. The CD is a blast when it’s on and imminently forgettable when it’s not. Listen to this one before paying for it, it might just disappoint you.

Pascal & Pearce - Passport 2.0
The local electro progressive house group Pascal & Pearce (Pascal Ellinas and Dave Pearce) gives some of their songs from their CD Passport a second go with some new remixes, tweaks and tweats and they do it brilliantly! Martin Solveig ft. Dragonette's Big in Japan get a P&P dusting as well as Locnville ft. Natasha Meister's Staring at The World Outside. Passport 2.0 is 12 tracks of brilliant party music and is highly recommendable.

Birdy - Birdy
English young music artist Bridy (born Jasmine van den Bogaerde) had us sitting upright and taking notice with her voice-and-piano cover of Bon Iver's Skinny Love. The 15-year-old from Hampshire delivers haunting music on herself titled debut CD, which consist mostly of her take on other people's music. The stripped down tracks are the once that give her wings. She keep the songs intimate and true to her style and that's what makes this release such a huge success.

All-American Rejects - Kids in the Street
American rock band The All-American Rejects' fourth CD is a rock-anthem party! From the initial build-up at the beginning of the opening track, "Someday's Gone," it's apparent that the band is letting their fans know that they are back and ready to prove their staying power. Front-man Tyson Ritter told Billboard during an interview, ""We're still a rock band. There's still guitars all over this thing. We just found a few different ways to use them, different ways to make guitars not sound like guitars. The songs were there, so we had to the time experiment and use all our time and energy in the studio just figuring out how to paint this picture." And all we can this - picture is pure rocking bliss!

Civil Twilight - Holy Weather
Former South African rock trio Civil Twilight's sophomore release Holy Weather creates a perfect blend of atmospheric sounds and hazy storytelling, which is crafted by brothers Steven (singer/bass/piona) and Andrew McKellar (guitar) and Richard Wouters (drums).Best known for their track Letters From The Sky, the bend does impress on the new CD. The band goes into several different places that weren’t even scratched upon during that first album. Some of this experimentation doesn’t work, but most of it does. Entirely different from the first album, Holy Weather is still a tremendous record that music fans will enjoy.

Jack White - Blunderbuss
Former The White Stripes member Jack White finally released his first solo album, and it's good! Alexis Petridis wrote in The Guardian that "Jack White has always been at his best when he's at his weirdest – and that is very, very much the case here." "Blunderbuss" has elements of nearly every project Jack has worked on - and there are many. The CD is familiar enough to please the fan base and  adventurous enough to forge a new path ahead.

Various OST - The Hunger Games: Songs from District 12 and Beyond
Produced by 12-time Grammy winner T Bone Burnett, the album features 16 brand-new and exclusive tracks by many of music's top artists who've drawn from themes embodied in The Hunger Games story to craft their songs. Expect to hear a brand new song from The Decemberists entitled "One Engine" as well as songs from a myriad of other chart-topping and critically acclaimed sensations such as Arcade Fire (whose song appears in the film itself), Kid Cudi, Miranda Lambert feat. The Pistol Annies, Adam Levine of Maroon 5, and more. Mirroring the intense action and compelling drama of this epic story, this eclectic mix of songs written especially for the companion album explore topics of freedom, family, love, power, and individuality.