Artist Showcase: Nick Frye (presented by DX Entertainment)

Nick Frye is an American musician who calls Columbus, OH home. This past March, Frye released a four-song EP that is pure genius. The tunes are sharp from top to bottom and after a listen, indie music lovers are going to want more from Frye. He was a drummer for now-defunct Ohio band Bonneville, but has the aptitude to make a serious go of it as a soloist.

The record kicks off with “ZUCKER!”, a tune that gives off the funky image of Adam Ant as frontman of Neon Trees. It’s definitely a track that’s ready for massive radio play. Perhaps that will come one day. “Miles” is the second tune and the song featured in the video above. This track is the epitome of modern electronica with elements of 80s music thrown in. It’s another gem that is worthy of hitting the airwaves.

The longest track is “Phony” and it has more of an 80s sound than the previous tunes on the EP. That alone makes it a standout on its own. It would have been a smash hit back in the day. The final song “You’re So Tired” is the shortest one and is more of a throwback than the prior efforts on the album. This EP leaves listeners wanting more and here is hoping Frye has a successful run to create another record and cash in on his talent.

Listeners will have a chance to see and hear Nick Frye up close and personal as he opens an amazing night of indie rock at King Avenue 5 in Columbus, OH on Friday, October 24. Also performing that night are Motherfolk and the headliner Pseudoname. Admission costs $5.00 at the door and the venue is only two miles southwest of The Ohio State University. It will be well worth it to hear Frye bring his ready for radio tunes to an intimate venue live and in living color.

This record is available now at Bandcamp.

This record is available now at Bandcamp.

Critique: Sunroof’s ‘Stargazing’

Sunroof (@SunroofMusic) is the moniker of 20 year-old solo artist Jeff Simpson. The Bozeman, Montana resident receives high marks for his first ever LP Stargazing. Given the top-notch quality of the record from beginning to end, it is clear as crystal Simpson put his heart and soul into making this album. In fact, he wrote each song and handled the production, mixing, and mastering of Stargazing himself. Note to note, the album sounds like it was done by one of the greats like Trevor Horn, Glen Ballard, or Tom Lord-Alge.

‘Time Travel’ is a great opener that is reminiscent of Erasure’s brilliant sounds. Although it has that 1980s vibe about it, it sounds fresh and demonstrates an Owl City influence. The title track is a hybrid of The Postal Service meets Thirty Seconds To Mars.  Three tracks are ready to rule radio and with proper label support, they would be surefire hits. ‘Etherea’ that makes you wonder what if Ben Gibbard and Ellie Goulding teamed up. It is that much of a ingenious tune.  ‘Brave’, which features SayWeCanFly, has a video made for it and here’s hoping good press leads to it going viral. Lastly, ‘You and I’ is very marketable and this is where Sunroof comes off as a crossover star. This tune could attract listeners at Alternative, Hot AC, and Top 40 radio stations. Electronic-influenced artists Phantogram and Broods are enjoying success, so it is the right time for Sunroof to get himself out there and get a piece of the pie.

For a limited time, Stargazing has been made available to download for no cost at Sunroof’s Noise Trade page. Simpson has carved himself out a great first full-length effort that has multiple tracks that could be licensed to soundtracks, commercials, and sports montages. All the tunes are worth of a listen and with the right marketing, the album should generate a buzz for Sunroof for years to come.  This should be a huge year moving forward for him.  Not bad for a limited budget DIY record from a 20 year-old solo act from Montana.

Artist on the Rise: Sunroof

Sunroof (@SunroofMusic) is an American musician who is self-described as playing electro-acoustic pop-rock. Montana resident Jeff Simpson started the dream in 2012 playing live shows within that year. Fast forward to 2013 and Sunroof made tracks available for sale at iTunes and other online retailers. Given the quality of what he has released so far, it is crystal clear this artist is on his way to having a very successful career.

“Brave”, the song featured in this video, is not a cover of the Sara Bareilles hit, but a track with Sunroof’s own unique acoustic poppy spin. It is a track that with label support, would have a chance to crack the Adult Top 40 and Hot AC charts. On his official Facebook, page he lists Ed Sheeran, Secondhand Serenade, and Owl City as influences. The Owl City-esque single “The Treehouse” is an inspiring, uplifting song for the upcoming season that the entire family can enjoy. “Atlantic Dreams” has legs as a dance club smash and mainstream pop hit with an Ellie Goulding vibe attached to it.

Although Sunroof’s 2014 touring plans have not been revealed as of yet, but he has the look, the sound, and the drive to be a success this year. He may be without a record deal now, but if the right people get an earshot of what he has offered thus far, it will not be too long before Sunroof has inked a contract. Remember the name and remember the tunes as there is a feeling Sunroof will make an impact in the music scene for years to come.

Substance Over Style: Why Kerosintini Should Surpass t.A.T.u

Rodion and Marina, better known as Kerosintini (@KerosintinI), is a Russian electronica duo who show Top 40 Pop potential with “You Are Going Insane”. Back in the mid-1990s and last decade, this would have been a surefire hit with mainstream radio programmers. In this social media era, to be a hit a song does not necessarily need to be overplayed on the radio. Millions of views of a single video can generate revenue and increase downloads and CD sales.

This tandem is the ultimate DIY group, as they handle all of the production themselves right down to the video featured here. It is shy of a million views now, but with the proper awareness nothing is going to hold Kerosintini back from international success.

t.A.T.u, a one-time global sensation, made it big with “All The Things She Said”, a highly regarded pop rock track with a controversial music video in tow. The video’s theme and the band’s “gimmick” were off-putting to some music consumers and Lena Katina and Yulia Volkova’s popularity waned. Rodion and Marina are a nice looking pair, but they are going to let the music they produce and perform speak for itself.

The British 80’s Invasion Is Underway

Imagine you are living thirty years earlier and you attended a show at a nightclub in England. You would have Amelia’s Fault. This track is that much of a throwback, but it should do well in 2013 as well.

Taken from colortheory.com, Amelia’s Fault creates dark, atmospheric electropop… like what you might hear if Massive Attack checked into the Bates Motel on its way to Twin Peaks.

Amelia’s Fault is a new project created by Swedish songwriter/producer Matt Eriksson (aka Stormby) with English songwriter Richard Hymas (Ulrik Munther) and American lyricist Charlie Mason (Cinema Bizarre).

The act’s first single, “Colder,” is out on Ninthwave Records and features vocals by Color Theory.

To the casual listener, it may sound like a love song, but the lyrics are utterly and despicably cruel.

This Would Have Been a Top 10 Hit with Label Support

Can you believe this track never hit a chart of any kind? This track was clearly not marketed well and should have had a bigger impact. Dangerbird Records, which did wonders for Silversun Pickups, really let this band down. The label and the band parted ways after just one album. For shame.