New Muse-ic Monday!

Leonard Friend: LXLF EP

Biography/Press Release:

Every Woman

February 25, 2013

Leonard Friend is the R&B/Pop persona of musician/songwriter/producer Alex Feder. After the demise of his previous band, The XYZ Affair, Feder moved from Brooklyn to Los Angeles and Leonard Friend was born. Since launching the project he has received acclaim from Nylon Magazine, MTV Buzzworthy, Stereogum, Consequence of Sound, DJ Booth, and many more. His second EP, LXLF, was released on February 25th.

"LXLF came about as a result of a year of jarring transitions and intense loneliness. There was a certain euphoric point of complete acceptance  ... That feeling of near rapturous loneliness, in a nutshell, is this record."

An alter-ego named after his grandfather, Leonard Friend is the sole performer and producer of this EP. He blended his experiences of prior recording and songwriting to create a synth mix of crooner inspired tracks that have pop forms, with R&B highlights, streaming all the while, a slick 80's throwback. He produced a cover of Justin Timberlake and  one review compared him to Prince. Leonard Friend is recreating himself in an evolving fusion of sound and images.

Gatorade and Tylenol.

Hypnotic and trance like, Leonard repeats the remedy for pain and dehydration, indeed. But the medicine is the music that keeps you moving.

Holograms.

Melodic voices and throw back synths create a wave of danceable swagger.

Annie Lennox.

High pitched, soulful vocals in a romantic, Bruno Mars meets Maxwell, and Friend pushes it to a higher octave, with a twist of background pop.

Middle Of The Night.

The essence of whiz pop synth, fast paced and repetitive. Leonard does not hold back his vision and creativity in realizing the identity he intended to portray. There is a story that this song has a serious real life narrative, as it was inspired by how his girlfriend took care of him 'in the middle of the night' after surgery. The ultimate test, 'who's gonna love you in the middle of the night?'

Every Woman.

LF digs deep to bust out a 'hooo' toward the end of the song, which reminds us of how much we miss our beloved Michael Jackson, another inspirational force in the making of this EP and videos. Friend ends this track with some fringe guitar work.

The project was able to pull in a "photo used in the artwork is a self portrait of Finnish makeup and visual artist Saara Sarvas, best known for her groundbreaking body painting work, with whom Friend became close while on tour in Europe last year."

Listen to the live stream here:

 www.leonardfriend.com

Out On The Tiles

Beth Hart - Live At Royal Festival Hall, London (UK) 23rd November 2016

beth hart by john bull 1

 

                                                                                                      (Photo by John Bull)

 

 

It has been a very successful year, professionally, for the L.A. singer and songwriter Beth Hart. Still fresh from the successful 2015 album Better Than Home, this powerhouse artist has just released a brand new album in Europe called Fire On The Floor, an album that has been welcomed by unanimous appreciation both from her fans and the music press. The album, which will be released in early 2017 in the States, is Hart's personal masterpiece to date, thanks to a fabulous alchemy of deep, intense songwriting, perfectly balanced musical arrangements and Hart's irresistible singing style.

Beth Hart has been and still is on a sort of Neverending Tour, in-between the Better Than Home and the Fire On The Floor albums. Among the many places in the world where the Californian artist is highly respected and loved, the United Kingdom has had, in the last three or four years, a fast-growing love, respect and appreciation for Hart's intensity, passion, disarming honesty and insanely great talent.

We catch Beth Hart live in London, on the last night of the UK leg of the Tour, who has recorded an impressive series of sold-out concerts, night after night throughout the whole country. When the lights go down, at 8.30pm sharp, Hart surprises the whole crowd by entering gently the Hall from the stalls, rather than the stage, on the notes of Billie Holiday's classic Don't Explain.

Judging from the initial ovation tributed to Hart's entrance, it is very clear that the crowd is expecting a pyrotechnical performance from the American artist tonight. The warmth coming from the very excited London crowd might have been, perhaps, a bit too overwhelming for this incredible singer/songwriter, creating inadvertantly a little backfiring effect. Beth Hart shows some initial tension in the first half hour of the show, maintaining her powerful voice at a much lower level, compared to what her fans are used to listen to, on songs like If I Tell You I Love You and Can't Let Go.

Once the L.A. artist starts to loosen up, the quality of her performance goes up three notches, showing why Beth Hart is so much loved and respected by so many people of different age ranges around the world. She can become on stage either the hottest rock chick in town, when she delivers the foot-stomping new song Fat Man (dedicated ironically to the new U.S. President) or be the tenderest, most passionate human being on Earth, when she opens up the deepest chords of her tormented soul in the irresistible 4-songs sequence of St. Theresa, Good Day To Cry, Sister Heroine and Leave The Light On.

 lhm6062 rlaurence harvey 2

 

                                                                                             (Photo by Laurence Harvey)

 

There is nothing that can stop Beth Hart from this point on tonight's show. The crowd is visibly on her feet and the American singer/songwriter keeps the momentum of the night high by bringing the show to the end with a musical knock-out with Delicious Surprise and the splendid Tell Her You Belong To Me.

But the night is not quite over yet. The crowd screams incessantly for more and Beth Hart is not certainly somebody that pulls back, when it comes to return all the passion that she has received tonight by the Royal Festival Hall's full house. The new album title-track Fire On The Floor sees perhaps the best vocal performance of the artist on the night, to the point that she receives another standing ovation by the whole house. Mama, This One's For You, dedicated to Hart's mother DorothyLee, creates the perfect platform to close the show with a spectacular cover version of  Etta Jame's I'd Rather Go Blind, Hart's closing signature piece of her shows of the last 3-4 years.

An irresistible performance from one of the most talented and skilled artist of this generation, even despite the shaky start of tonight's show. It must be the magic of Xmas approaching, because the Londoners have witnessed, tonight, the only flying-indoor comet they are ever likely to see in their lives. That comet is called Beth Hart.  

 

 

 

Giovanni "Gio" Pilato

 

Follow Bluebirdreviews for daily song posts, music reviews,

feature articles and interviews. 

LIKE US on Facebook

Find us on Google+

~ Follow the birdie on TWITTER ~

Remember to support your favorite artists through buying their products.

A good place to start is searching BestBuy.com and Amazon.com.

 

Maine Music News

Dont let the name fool you! Maine Music News provides live concert reviews and photography for shows throughout all of New England. Our photographers cover shows in Maine, New Hampshire, Connecticut, New York, Massachusetts and anywhere else we can! Our writers provide detailed album reviews and expertly written interviews as well. We may be called Maine Music News, but we dont let the Maine border stop us!