Category Archives: music review

Vita Nova (Deluxe Edition) by Halocene

I am so excited to be sharing with my audience a new addition to the Author Anthony Avina website, which is a new type of review. My website has been and always will be primarily a book review and book-centered website and blog, but there are so many other interesting avenues worth exploring that I decided to expand this year into those other avenues. 

One such avenue is music, something I have several years of experience writing about and reviewing with the online publication, On Request Magazine. One thing I thought would make my takes on music, YouTube channels, movies, tv shows, games and more would be to approach them the same way I would a book, and that is from a narrative perspective. To see what the story holds within each project, what themes or messages they hold, and the emotions they evoked within me, as well as who the project will resonate with. 

Our first music review on my website is going to be for a band I have loved listening to over the past six months, and that is Halocene. I discovered them myself this past summer, and after listening to both their covers and their incredible originals, I knew I had to subscribe to their Twitch and YouTube channels. Their dedication to their craft, their incredible talent, and the sheer amount of creativity they pour into their music, as well as the connection they share with their fans as they live stream 3-days a week via Twitch, makes them the perfect band to begin this year with.

Their latest album, Vita Nova (Deluxe Edition), is the best marker of their evolution as a band over the years. Having begun in 2008 and has toured and opened for bands like Fall out Boy and Blink-182, the Phoenix, AZ band hits fans with an epic, haunting, and beautifully written and performed album that delves into everything from mental health struggles to looking for a new future through the next generation and the battles we all have with the demons that reside within us. Tracks like Rage will get the blood pumping, while others like the titular track Vita Nova will not only strike a thoughtful chord with audiences but bring about an almost cinematic quality to the music that makes it feel right at home in some heroic quest on your television screen. 

What makes this band so unique is the independence and heart that they put into their music. Completely produced by the band themselves, the music retains that sense of personal attachment and emotion that great albums often do from the artists themselves. The hit single When Demons Come to Life” plays well into lead singer Addie’s breathtaking voice, highlighting every nuance of the emotions the song evokes both within the audience and the singer herself, including lyrics like “Who Will Save Me?!”, a pivotal and gripping moment in the video and song. Guitarist and music aficionado Brad highlights a command over the harmonious way the music comes together, and his gritty singing and screaming bring the electricity that perfectly blends with Addie’s flawless voice. When this all comes together with Drummer Joe’s heart-pumping and adrenaline-fueled talent that gets fans up on their feet and right into the heart of each song, you get a brilliant band that unapologetically brings their vision to life in the best way possible.

Having grown up in the ’90s and early ’00s, my upbringing was always geared towards rock as far as music was concerned. I grew up listening to classic rock with my parents like Aerosmith, Oingo Boingo, and Heart, while my own teen years saw the emergence of My Chemical Romance, Paramore, and Disturbed, among many others. The nostalgia and heart that that era of music brings me every time I listen to it is what I feel whenever I put on a Halocene song, especially with their album Vita Nova. The power and moving themes found within each song bring a great balance to the songs and narratives being told as the heavy-hitting and head-thrashing music gets playing, and personally, as a writer I always find myself geared towards music that inspires me creatively, which is something Holocene continues to do time and time again. If you haven’t yet, be sure to follow Halocene on all their socials, Spotify, Twitch and so many more. 

Rating: 10/10

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About the Band: 

We’re a hard working band from Phoenix, Arizona that has been around since 2008. We’ve toured from coast to coast in a beat up van, opening for bands like Blink 182, Fall Out Boy, and the Vans Warped Tour, but we found our stride as YouTube influencers, uploading a new cover every Friday. Halocene is 100% self made. All music production, videos, sites and media are all created by the band.

We have a new original album out called “VITA NOVA” which you can get on Halocene.com or on iTunes, Google Play, Spotify, etc.

https://halocene.com/

Andy Michaels Revisited Album Review (Written and Video)

A powerhouse singer/songwriter who refuses to be boxed into a single label, Andy Michaels wows listeners with his smooth vocals and command of the emotional spectrum in his album, “Revisited”.

The Australian singer/songwriter has crafted a record that fuses an indie pop sound with a classic rock twist. Bringing music that touches the soul, Andy Michaels impresses with his late 80’s/early 90’s vocal talent that embeds itself instantly into your mind. What really makes this artist stand out above the rest is his command over the storytelling of his album. Each song tells a different tale, one that touches on core emotions we’ve all felt at one point or another, and yet he brings these feelings to life almost effortlessly.

Overall this was an incredible album. Whether you love powerful ballads like “Angel” or “Where Are You Now” or more contemporary songs like “I Just Want To Be The One”, this album has something for fans of every genre. Refusing to be defined, singer/songwriter Andy Michaels brings multiple genres and sounds together in an effort to bridge the gap between these styles, and focus on what matters, and that’s the story of the song and the music being played. If you haven’t yet you should pick up your copy or listen to artist Andy Michaels album “Revisited” today!

Rating: 10/10

Artist Biography

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“Poet, composer, singer and guitarist, Andy is a wonderful breath of fresh of fresh air in a somewhat cynical and tumultuous musical world.” (Coastal Times, WA, 2016)

With his songs have been described as “True Adult Contemporary Music”, Andy has established a popular following over the years with his works compared with modern contemporary artists “The Script” , “Counting Crows”, and “R.E.M”, as well as international Legends Cat Stevens and Neil Young. His voice is unique and gives passion and vitality to his songs, whilst his lyrics are not only intelligent and profound, but innocent and appealing.

Andy’s arrangements and music style are also reminiscent of Cold Play, Pink Floyd and Peter Gabriel. His voice is unique and gives passion and vitality to all his songs and for added impact on several songs on his new Album, “Revisited”, he also enlisted the amazing, Macey Gray sounding, vocal talent of UK born Kerrie Ironside.

Andy has played guitar since a car accident left him temporarily incapacitated before he was 20 years of age. His poems have been published by the International Library of Poetry, USA. Andy has not lost his passion for performing, with regular performances around Australia as well as in Asia, including China. His songs have received radio play in many countries including Australia, USA, England, Canada, South Africa, Switzerland and Netherlands, where his songs have been syndicated to multiple radio stations

Artist Links

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Instagram

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Youtube Channel

Music Videos

White Lies – https://youtu.be/6JrTkbXJAU0 

Where are you Now – https://youtu.be/aI311P67fMw

I just want to be the One – https://youtu.be/FI_0GBAEqUM