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Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Elmo Karjalainen: Where We Belong

There are some aspects of the world that barely need to be mentioned. “We live in a rushed and busy time” seems like such a statement, and yet, it’s something that needs to be restated in order for us to know that something is terribly wrong when we don’t have time to enjoy our lives. Music too reflects this circumstance. With the number of hard-hitting, fast-paced, and conceptually violent pieces climbing the charts, where have our sounds of introspection gone?

These are some of the reasons why I have so thoroughly enjoyed Elmo Karjalainen’s most recent acoustic guitar venture: “Where We Belong.” It’s a 15 track journey of lyric melodies and finger-picking that reminds us beauty is available as long as we slow down and see it (or, in this case, hear it). Elmo has offered us this wonderful work as an album for purchase through his website which is linked at the bottom of this review. 

My focus on the pace of the musical material should in no way insinuate that this music is only for purposes of relaxation; quite the contrary. Karjalainen is remarkably passionate in his approach to the guitar and he has a level of virtuosity that any fan of the instrument should appreciate. If anything, Elmo displays so confidently what real musicianship is: the ability to use technique as a tool for moving an audience. In the end, it turns out where we belong might be where we’re at. 

To learn more about Elmo Karjalainen visit his website here:

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Dave Rosario: Heart Miami HALLOWEEN 2015

So, four months to wait for a recording from an event that happened late 2015 is a long time, but I think you’ll agree this one’s worth it. New York-based DJ and producer Dave Rosario has released his Miami live Halloween set – an expertly recorded 90-minute jam that makes you feel like you’re in the middle of Florida in the fall, drink in hand amidst what can only be described as an inferno of debauchery. After all, remember what grandfather Clinton prophetically said: “free your mind and your ass will follow.”

Laced with beautiful leads and a beat that won’t quit, the mix also features the quintessential vocals which makes for such a memorable sound. Rosario dispenses with any pretense of wobble bass or overused 50-hetz TB 808 sounds which seems to dominate both hip-hop and dance music these days. This Halloween set is much more classic, getting back to the basics of dance but in a way that unmistakably modern. More than worth the listen!