Category Archives: Experimental/Inspirational

John Reuben – Hindsight (2002)

John Reuben - Hindsight (2002)

Artist: John Reuben
Album: Hindsight
Release Date: May 21st, 2002
Style: Hip Hop / Rap / Experimental
Label: Gotee Records
Location: Columbus, OH

Reviews & Opinions:

“I’m gonna go ahead and admit this: I’m not a huge fan of rap. Now before you get all judgemental on me and give me the look of death, let me explain. I just have a hard time listening to something that I have to force myself to understand what is being said. Now, this is very bad stereotype that I am putting on all rap/hip-hop music, and I realize this now that I listen to Hindsight, one of the best albums to land in my hands this year. John Reuben could easily be called Christian music’s version of Eminem, just without the crotch grabs and foul language every five seconds. But, I don’t want to compare him to something he’s not. Reuben is a talent all his own. His lyrics are both hysterical and poignant all at the same time. He offers social commentary, while at the same time making fun of himself. With his latest CD, John Reuben has established himself as one of the top satricial lyricists out there, along side greats like Steve Taylor or Matthew Theissen (of Relient K). It’s funny how Reuben can mix serious tunes like “Breathe” alongside hilarious songs like “Soundman”. Well, it works, and it works well. With Hindsight, Reuben has taken satirical hip-hop to a new level. I’m curious to see where he heads on his next album! Go John Reu!” - worldofcm

“John Reuben is a great talent. The question “Can Christian rap be done well?” has been answered. Yes it can. But will it still be edgy, sharp? Yes it will. Will it actually sound good? It sure does. Reuben writes his own rhymes, and they are at times funny, introspective, sobering and always catchy. I love the creativity, Reuben weaves through each track of this album. You feel like you get to know him.

His first track tells the listener that he always wants to keep it innovative, and I have to say I havn’t heard an album like this one before. If you like rap, good rap, and you’re tired of hearing about money, sex, drugs and violence, here’s your album. Rap can be inspiring, and still be sharp. Give it a try. ” - Aaron

John Reuben.jpg

Track Listing:
1. I’ll Try Harder
2. I John Reu
3. Hindsight
4. Big E Cypher Session
5. Soundman
6. Run The Night
7. Breathe
8. I Pictured It
9. 01/08/02
10. Doin’
11. Thank You (feat. Manchild & Othello)
12. DJ Manuel (Turntablism 101)
13. Up And At Them
14. Defensive Offender
15. Pataskala


Website | MySpace | Amazon | YouTube | Twitter | Gotee | PureVolume | iTunes

Aside Oceans – Aside Oceans (2010)

Artist: Aside Oceans
Album: Aside Oceans (Self-Titled/Debut Album)
Release Date: June 22nd, 2010
Style: Alternative Rock / Experimental / Blues
Label: Forsaken Recordings
Location: Pulaski, VA

Bradley Steele- Vocals, Guitar / Billy Steele- Guitar, Back-Ups / Tyler Davis- Guitar, Back-Ups / John Rardin- Bass / Kevin Chinault- Drums.


Southwest VA offers cool mountain air, all four seasons, and the best southern hospitality you can ask for. This is also the home to one of todays up and coming Alternative Rock bands. Aside Oceans is a 5 piece rock band who is passionate about making music that is real and sends an uplifting hidden message to the listener through 90s edge, riffing, melody and harmonies. When it seems the next trend is following the next trend. You will find Aside Oceans sticking to one of there most used mottos “Do what your good at.”

The band’s music is a reflection of their various and rather different tastes with influences ranging from the melodies and harmonies of the Beatles and Queen to the edge and care free attitude of the 90s alternative rock scene. Also, holding a love to experiment with effects and technology that todays time has to offer. Having these different elements of melody and rock gives them the upper hand on attracting a wider and more diverse audience.

Aside Oceans prides themselves on their 3 part harmonies, flawless guitar tones, heavy bass drive, and steady driven pocket drumming, but when you put music to the side, the willingness that Aside Oceans have to share the message of their faith through the music they love puts Aside Oceans at the top of their class for upcoming concert bands.

Bradley Steele- Vocals, Guitar / Billy Steele- Guitar, Back-Ups / Tyler Davis- Guitar, Back-Ups / John Rardin- Bass / Kevin Chinault- Drums.
Track Listing:
1. Making Beds In Burning Houses
2. New Home
3. Crazy World
4. Voices In The Hands
5. Make Them Make A First Move Conway!
6. Minds Like Parachutes


Website | MySpace | Amazon | iTunes | Facebook | Twitter

Tagged as Christian band on Amazon. Their Facebook / Myspace doesn’t say anything.

My Epic – Yet (2010)

My Epic - Yet (2010)

Artist: My Epic
Album: Yet
Release Date: July 6th, 2010
Style: Rock / Experimental / Indie
Label: Facedown / Dreamt Records
Location: Charlotte, MC

Members: Aaron Stone, Jesse Stone, Jeremiah Austin


My Epic have been hard at work on their sophomore album for the past few months, and we now have the latest details about the project. The band has been working with Matt Goldman (Underoath, Copeland, Anberlin, Cartel) to produce their second album, YET. Click on the “read more” link below to read a mini interview we conducted with vocalist / guitarist Aaron Stone as he talks about working with Matt Goldman and the meaning behind the songs and the album title. My Epic will be touring in support of YET starting on June 5th and ending at Cornerstone Festival in Bushnell, IL. They along with So Long Forgotten (Come & Live) and label mates A Hope For Home are teaming up with 30 Hour Famine and World Vision for a tour that will hit the midwest, east and south. Dates will be announced soon.

Facedown: Can you give me some lines about what it was like recording with Matt? Your experience working with him, what he’s adding to the record that was lacking from the last recording, etc.

My Epic Members: Aaron Stone, Jesse Stone, Jeremiah Austin

Aaron: Matt is just a great person. In the truest sense. He is fun to be with, he has a great sense of humor and he truly loves people. One of the things we realized early on was that he doesn’t exaggerate. Matt says exactly what he means. If it’s good he says so but he never uses words like “awesome” or “amazing”. That’s a quality we have really grown to appreciate over the last few years. The other great thing about Matt is that we already trusted that he knew what he was doing. Everything we had ever recorded up to this point was with our friend Andrew. Andrew is brilliant and we are so proud of everything we ever did with him. Andrew, for the longest time, was like the other band member. At that point in time he would even help us with our song structures. We learned how to write music with Andrew, we grew up together. But this time around we felt really confident in the songs and we just wanted someone to help us maximize who we have become. When we toured with Cool Hand Luke last year, Mark kept telling us that we should record our next record with Matt Goldman. We weren’t about to argue because Matt has produced several of our all time favorite records. It’s Mark who really made this happen. He got us in touch with Matt and became our champion. When we first met Matt back in September he pretty much said that he had not even listened to us yet but that he trusted Mark so much that he would do it on his recommendation alone. In fact we even demoed all the songs instrumentally ahead of time for him and he did not even listen to them till the day before we got there. The first thing he said when we got there was “I listened to the songs today, they’re pretty cool as long as you don’t mess the vocals up”. And that’s honestly how it was. Once we were in studio with him his full attention was on the record. He is a hard guy to get a hold of if your not in the studio with him because he is always so focused on whoever he is recording at the moment. We had talked to quite a few bands ahead of time that had worked with him and they had all said what Matt does best is figure out who your band is and make the best record for you. So many of his records sound so different and I think that’s a huge compliment. With “I am Undone” we were just putting the professional touches on a sound we had been developing for awhile. We love that record but we didn’t want to make it again. We don’t ever want to make the same record twice. We will always have those songs so we wanted to make new ones even with the temptation to chicken out and redo what people already like. Matt was great at encouraging us to let this record become what it wanted to be. On the whole, this record is simpler and more raw. We stripped away all the pianos, cellos, Rhodes, and synths. We wanted it to sound more focused. This record is also much groovier and that will be obvious. Jeremiah and Jesse stepped their game up big time and the guitar did not have to work as hard to keep the songs full. That being said my guitar work is heavier, I bought a baritone guitar and we wrote four of the songs on that. And my voice is naturally growing into its own. I just sort of know how to let things come out more naturally and it sounds much better. Overall it’s a raw and groovy record with a heavier overall sound but prettier vocals.

Lastly, one of the coolest things about the experience with Matt was simply getting to spend the better part of three weeks together. He is really good at not letting you get too caught up in insignificant things. He continued to remind us, “It’s just a record” and we learned a while ago that possibly the most meaningful thing that occurs during this process is what happens in our hearts as we make it. It was awesome to get to grow and learn from Matt just as a regular guy that loves the Lord. And perhaps one of the coolest things was watching him with his family. He is an incredible father. I don’t know how he juggles it but he does and you can just see and hear how much he cherishes his family. Matt let us join his life for three weeks. We felt like a part of his family and that his friends were ours too. He is very naturally kingdom-minded.

Facedown: Also, the new album title can you talk a little bit about the idea behind ‘Yet’ – the title in itself and how it encompasses the album as a whole?

Aaron: This is the first record that didn’t name itself ahead of time. It’s a much more personal record and when you let your life spill over into the process freely without first imposing some structure it can be much harder to explain what the record actually is. We have been living now for three years communally as a band in a poor neighborhood in downtown Charlotte which has changed us a lot. It has matured us and we have seen so many amazing and terrible things. Some of my best friends now were once homeless or caught up in serious drug addiction. We have seen brothers of ours go to jail, we’ve been robbed for thousands of dollars, seen friends relapse into addiction, and last year even lost one of our best friends. At the same time we have seen G-d so clearly over and over again be our one good and true thing. We have found Him to be so much more than adequate. We have seen people who were once far off become sons of G-d and baptized brothers in streams, pools, and bathtubs. We have seen men who had once given up on themselves reengage humanity and find family. We have watched men who once thought themselves useless put their hands back into work and find a new sense of calling. Through it all the Lord has been teaching us about simply abiding in Him. These last two years John 15 has been such a crucial chapter for us. I think so often we try to treat G-d like a gas station. We want to go and fill up, then go out and please him. But we can’t and it’s exhausting. He just wants us to be branches that constantly abide in Him. We have only to walk in Him. We do not need to burden ourselves with a new law but simply to learn to be completely His possession. YET is about the distance between that which has already been traveled, overcome, and discarded, and the journey still to come. It is about the evidence, even now, of what will be. It is about a G-d who is so brilliantly and blindingly big that our rational minds can only be left to cower at His depths. He is so magnificent that we cannot yet look Him in the eye and yet He desires to live within us. It is about the hope that arises when one truly realizes that we will be completely undone when we stand before Him and yet He loves us still and makes us what we could never be on our own.

My Epic: Aaron Stone, Jesse Stone, Jeremiah Austin

Track Listing:

1. Author
2. Lower Still (feat. Micah Boyce of So Long Forgotten)
3. Lashes
4. Rich
5. Patience and Silence
6. Sound and Fury
7. Pour
8. Ashes
9. Further Up / Further In
10. Perfector


MySpace | Amazon | iTunes | Facebook | Twitter | LastFM | iLike | PureVolume | YouTube

Oceana – Clean Head [EP] ‘2010

Artist: Oceana
Album: Clean Head [EP]
Release Date: may 11 ‘2010
Style: Indie Rock
Label: Riserecords


It’s a difficult endeavor to transcend genres with each recording, but central-Floridian band Oceana seem to be up for the task with their up-coming “Clean Head” EP. First marking their territory on the debut album “The Tide” Oceana offered itself to the metal core scene as a band that had serious ambition. The band then benchmarked their career on the post-hardcore version of “The Devil and God are Raging Inside Me”, with their follow up album, “Birth.Eater”, Oceana gave one of the most introspective concept albums of the year. Now, offering a less distorted and fresh take on their distinctive style, the band shifts gears once more and finds their southern roots being slightly uncovered. Lyrics and musicianship continue to resonate with listeners, a fan of any Oceana album will find something to love on this new EP.

Track Listing:

01. Blue
02. Barracuda, Capital Of The World
03. Wool God
04. Joy


Website | Myspace| Amazon | iTunes | Facebook | Twitter | LastFM | iLike | PureVolume

The Deluxtone Rockets – The Deluxtone Rockets’2008

Artist: The Deluxtone Rockets
Album: The Deluxtone Rockets
Release Date: 2008 (Original Release Date: April 27, 1999)
Style: Rock & Roll / Rockabilly / Swing Revival
Label: Tooth & Nails Records

John Brown — Lead Vocals, Guitar
Jimmy Van Boxel — Upright Bass, BGV’s
Jacob Dykema — Tenor Sax, Vocals
Richard Mittwede — Trombone, BGV’s
Jason Sorn — Drums
Tim Harvell — Trumpet, BGV’s

The Deluxtone Rockets were a Rockabilly/Swing band from Muskegon, MI. They signed to Tooth and Nail records in 1998 and toured the U.S. extensively. Recording with Gene Eugene (Lost Dogs) and the late Dennis Dannell of Social Distortion, the band released two albums and achieved some minor success by having their music aired on MTV, Fox, and various extreme sports programs. Spring 2008, after an eight year hiatus DTR is back together and writing new material under the name “D.T. Rockets”. The music is considerably less rockabilly and more post punk/dirty rock and roll. All of the current band members have played with DTR in some way or another through the years. John, Jason, and Harley were all founding members. Dusty Bottoms used to fill in on upright-bass for us at the tender age of sweet 16, just a skinny pimple-faced kid. Thus far, the plan is to write as much material as we can and see where that strange winding road takes us…

Track Listing:

01. Tijuana Jumping Bean 3:26
02. Green-Eyed Cat 3:22
03. Long Road Home 3:31
04. Be Bop A Go Go 2:30
05. You Get Burned 4:05
06. Rev It Up 3:37
07. Hi-Fi Daddy 4:10
08. Johnny In The Mirror 4:15
09. God’s Cadillac 2:28
10. Rumble With The Devil 3:58
11. Kitten 4:15

Total time: 39:36


Website | MySpace | Amazon | iTunes | Facebook | Twitter | LastFM | iLike | PureVolume