The new music video for Better Than Ezra's first single off of Paper Empire was released today and I have to say that I thoroughly enjoyed watching it. I might even go as far to say that I liked the music video more than the s, although they do compliment themselves very well. The stop motion animation fits perfectly for the song and it is well directed.
I don't have much more to say other than enjoy it. You can read my review of Paper Empire or my post on "Absolutely Still" if you are up for further reading. Enjoy it.
Armed with new drummer, Michael Jerome, and long time bassist, Tom Drummond, lead singer Kevin Griffin is getting set to release Better Than Ezra's seventh studio album. The new album, entitled Paper Empire, will be available to the public on May 12th, 2009. Fortunately, I was able to get my hands on it early. I am excited to share with Better Than Ezra and 90's music fans alike, what is in store this time from the boys from New Orleans.
The album kicks off with a song many of you may be familiar with, "Absolutely Still". The first single off of Paper Empire, "Absolutely Still", was released a few weeks ago and according to Kevin, the music video has already been recorded and they even have a few behind the scenes pictures of the shoot on their myspace page. It continues to grow on me every time I listen to it. The second track, "All In", is definitely a concert song. I can picture Ezralites singing along to this one at the next concert. My favorite line is "The moral to the story / There really isn't one / The bottom of the line / Is to have a bit of fun."
"Black Light", the fourth track, is one of the more up-tempo songs. This song really shows their mastery of the kick it up and the break it down and the transition between the two. Next up is "Fit", which fell a little flat on my ears. Not bad but not great. Maybe my least favorite on the new album. The fifth track, "Hell No!", will definitely get your attention. I predict that it will be another concert favorite and while the chorus doesn't have much substance with lines like, "Hell no y'all! We ain't gonna sit down / Hell no y'all! Gonna shake this mother to the ground / Hell no y'all! We ain't gonna back down", it's one of my favorites. They slow it down a bit with "Hey Love", a song that was featured on Kevin's facebook page for a while. "Hey Love" is my favorite song on the album so far and a great "love" song. "I Just Knew" is easily the slowest song on the album. Perhaps the slowest, most acoustic sounding song ever from Better Than Ezra. Similar to "Fit", its not bad but its not my favorite either.
"Just One Day" proposes a simple question, "What would you do? / What would you say? / If everyone you loved came back for just one day." A simple song about healing and moving on. "The Loveless" is a song that was up on Kevin's myspace page for a while. It's a mellow song that I could see a TV show picking up for a theme song. Its got that kinda vibe. "Nightclubbing" is a lot like "Juicy" from Before the Robots but in my opinion a lot better. If you liked "Juicy", you definitely will like this one. Most of Better Than Ezra's songs would cause a riot of disgruntled partons at a nightclub but this one might actually pass the grade on the dance floor.
"Turn Up The Bright Lights" is the kind of track that sucks you in from the beginning. Easily my favorite from the album. Its a song about enjoying the city and someone special. The last song on the album, "Wounded", truly encapsulates what this whole album is about. Kevin Griffin was quoted as saying, "There's a really precarious nature to everything that you hold dear in your life," when referring to the album title, Paper Empire. He really gets down to the heart of the matter in this song and it's a good way to end the album.
At a little under 48 minutes long, Paper Empire's twelve tracks have a lot to offer. Highlights include: "Hell No!", "Hey Love", "Nightclubbing", and "Turn Up The Bright Lights". It's a very strong effort and I have few complaints. It is hard to rank it with their other albums, having only listened to it for a few hours but I can see it falling somewhere in the middle.
Rating: Four out of Five stars; a solid album.
If you are like me and want a cool collectors item, you can head over to BetterThanEzra.com and pre-order the album. They will send you a signed copy of the album.
Better Than Ezra will be on the road all summer promoting the new album so be sure to head over to their myspace page to see if their heading to a city near you.
That's it for now. Hope you enjoyed the review.
This week we celebrate the new single from the boys from New Orleans. "Absolutely Still" by Better Than Ezra is a first taste of their new album entitled Paper Empire. Paper Empire, which is due out May 12th 2009, is their seventh studio album and puts a close to the nearly 4 year drought in between albums. Their last studio album, Before The Robots, is one of my favorite albums of the last ten years and a review of the album can be found here. I will be sure to get a review of the new album up as soon as I can get my hands on it.
Along with the news of the new album and the release of the new single, came the announcement that long time drummer, Travis Aaron McNabb, was leaving the band to continue his gig with the country duo Sugarland. Sugarland, who picked up two Grammys this year, needed a drummer for their live performances and Travis has been filling that void for about a year and a half and is now taking on a permanent role. Filling the void on the other end is new Better Than Ezra drummer Michael Jerome (pictured above-right). I haven't heard him play yet but both lead singer Kevin Griffin and Bassist Tom Drummond are fans of his drumming skills and have faith that he will be the replacement that the need.
As for the song itself, "Absolutely Still", its pretty much classic Better Than Ezra. I wouldn't rate it as my all time favorite Better Than Ezra song, but its pretty good. It only has about 12,000 plays on their myspace page and doesn't seem to be getting much press but I expect it to pick up some steam when they release Paper Empire.
They have released 20+ tour dates already in an effort to promote the new album and hopefully will add some more as the summer approaches.
That's about it for now. Enjoy the new one from Better Than Ezra.
After last week's 90s Pop Music playlist, I decided to get back to my real roots and create a playlist with a collection of some of the best rock songs of the late 90s. This playlist has some of my favorite artists from the 90s, and these bands are the reason I first became interested in music in general.
I tried to go with more of these band's more popular and familiar songs but I plan on creating a few more of these playlists, where I dig a little deeper into the genre.
My favorite from this playlist has to be "Push" by Matchbox Twenty, one of the best songs of any genre from the 90s. The opening to "Push" never fails to bring chills down my spine.
Fortunately, this is not the only great song on this playlist. All of these artists have proved their worth over the years, and these songs only sample their excellence.
1. "Heavy" by Collective Soul
2. "Push" by Matchbox Twenty
3. "Everything Zen" by Bush
4. "Old Apartment" by Barenaked Ladies
5. "How's It Going To Be" by Third Eye Blind
6. "I Alone" by Live
7. "Inside Out" by Eve 6
8. "Good" by Better Than Ezra
9. "Everlong" by Foo Fighters
10. "One Headlight" by The Wallflowers
Here's the link for the whole playlist: 90s Post-Grunge Playlist
Looking for more playlists? We've got plenty.
Today, Rizzo Music introduces a new featured article, "Song Of The Week". Here we will showcase a song of exceptional quality and tell why it is deserving of such a phenomenal distinction. My plan is to write this type of article every Sunday so make sure to look back here often for your "Song Of The Week" fix.
Now for one of my new favorite songs, "Simple Song" by Better Than Ezra. This is unreleased song from the trio from New Orleans. Better Than Ezra is, of course, famous for their two hit singles, "Good" and "Desperately Wanting" but as I have learned in the last few years, their catalog of songs is outstanding and this song is no different.
Now that front man Kevin Griffin is trying out his solo career, he has revamped his myspace page and put up a few songs for your listening pleasure. One of them is "Simple Song", a song filled with some of the best lyrics I've heard in a while.
"Simple Song" itself is a simple song but it has some powerful lyrics. You can either go to his myspace page here, or watch the live version below.
Love or hate this week's song or have an idea for next week's "Song Of The Week", please feel free to make a comment below.
Rizzo Music is back with a new article from the "Popular Music of the 90s" series. Last week I made a list of some of the best pop music of the decade and today I am going to share with you my list for the most popular rock music of the 90s. Out of all the lists and playlists I have created in the past, this was by far the hardest to come up with. There are so many great artists and songs that originated in the 90s and deciding on just 5 songs for every year was tough. I tried to get representation out of all the key rock artists and hopefully I didn't forget anyone.
After much debate I was able to compile this list of 90s rock music. There are so many songs that I really enjoy that could not be included due restrictions on space but there are 50 great singles here for your enjoyment.
How it works:
For each genre of music I will rank the top 5 singles from each year in the 90s. I will provide a link for each song (either imeem or youtube, depending on availability) for your listening pleasure.
Disclaimer: These rankings are based on my personal preferences, not on actual popularity. I think of these lists as recommendations. Hopefully these songs will bring back some good memories, and if you have never heard them before, maybe create some new ones.
Interested in 90s Pop and Rap as well? Be sure to check out these lists as well.
90s Pop Music
90s Rock Music
Starting with the year 1999:
1. "My Own Worst Enemy" by Lit
2. "Jumper" by Third Eye Blind
3. "Scar Tissue" by Red Hot Chili Peppers
4. "The Chemicals Between Us" by Bush
5. "Heavy" by Collective Soul
1. "Inside Out" by Eve 6
2. "The Way" by Fastball
3. "Sex and Candy" by Marcy Playground
4. "Shimmer" by Fuel
5. "Closing Time" by Semisonic
1. "Bitter Sweet Symphony" by The Verve
2. "Push" by Matchbox Twenty
3. "Everlong" by Foo Fighters
4. "The Freshman" by The Verve Pipe
5. "Everything to Everyone" by Everclear
1. "1979" by Smashing Pumpkins
2. "One Headlight" by The Wallflowers
3. "Counting Blue Cars" by Dishwalla
4. "What I Got" by Sublime
5. "In the Meantime" by Spacehog
1. "Lightning Crashes" by Live
2. "Wonderwall" by Oasis
3. "Glycerine" by Bush
4. "Name" by Goo Goo Dolls
5. "Good" by Better Than Ezra
1. "When I Come Around" by Green Day
2. "Shine" by Collective Soul
3. "I Alone" by Live
4. "Self Esteem" by The Offspring
5. "About a Girl" by Nirvana
1. "Rooster" by Alice in Chains
2. "Mr. Jones" by Counting Crows
3. "Hey Jealousy" by Gin Blossoms
4. "No Rain" by Blind Melon
5. "Killing in the Name" by Rage Against the Machine
1. "Jeremy" by Pearl Jam
2. "In Bloom" by Nirvana
3. "Drive" by R.E.M.
4. "Nothing Else Matters" by Metallica
5. "Creep" by Radiohead
1. "Smells Like Teen Spirit" by Nirvana
2. "Man in the Box" by Alice in Chains
3. "Enter Sandman" by Metallica
4. "Losing My Religion" by R.E.M.
5. "Right Here, Right Now" by Jesus Jones
1. "Hunger Strike" by Temple of the Dog
2. "Kool Thing" by Sonic Youth
3. "Head Like A Hole" by Nine Inch Nails
4. "Stop!" by Jane's Addicton
5. "Thunderstruck" by AC/DC
Well there you have it. The top 5 songs from each year of the 90s. Thanks for listening and enjoy.
Agree? Disagree? Feel free to share your opinion by making a comment below.
Lately I have been listening to a lot of music, most of which I never heard before. A lot of it has been from some of my favorite artists, but some have just been random songs that I have come across. I have been going through some old albums as well as some new ones and I decided to make a new playlist with some of my new favorites.
I would just like to make a note of Dishwalla, a band that I recently rediscovered and started to listen to them extensively. Know most for their classic radio hit, "Counting Blue Cars", they are a band that is much deeper then their one hit wonder status. If you happen to like "Coral Sky", which is in this playlist, I suggest you check out more of their latest album, which is self-titled. Some of my favorites from that album are "Above The Wreckage", "Collide" and "40 Stories". If your more of a fan of their older music you should definitely check out their Live... Greetings From The Flow State album. Well, that's it for this week. Hope you enjoyed it.
Top 10 Songs You Should Know - Week 20 - August 20-26 2007
1. Goo Goo Dolls - Big Machine
2. Dishwalla - Coral Sky
3. The Smashing Pumpkins - Neverlost
4. Big Head Todd and The Monsters - Bittersweet
5. Hootie & The Blowfish - Old Man & Me
6. Death Cab For Cutie - Photobooth
7. Better Than Ezra - Heaven
8. Depeche Mode - Policy Of Truth
9. Bush - Letting The Cables Sleep
10. The Wallflowers - Here In Pleasantville
Here's the link for the whole playlist: Recently Discovered Songs
First of all I would like to say that this is one of my favorite songs and not just by Better Than Ezra. The studio version is great but the live one brings that extra element to it. It starts off with a piano solo and the kicks off to one of Kevin's classic explanations of what the song is all about. I've had the pleasure to see these guys in concert a couple of times and they are great live. Kevin has a great stage presence and is usually really funny with his comments between songs. If your a Better Than Ezra fan and have a chance to go see them, go.
Though they are past their prime in terms of mainstream popularity they still have a good fan base and tour fairly consistently year round. Anyway, I was listening to their live album today and I came across this song and thought I would share it with you. It's a good one, hope you like it. "Enough Said."
UPDATE: They removed the video I originally referring to. He tells a little bit different story at the beginning of this one. If you want to see the live performance I was talking about before, you'll probably have to buy their Live At House Of Blues New Orleans DVD, because I can't find it anywhere else.
For this playlist I thought that I would treat you with some of my favorite music from bands that I really enjoy. Chances are that you might not of heard these before. These will be from familiar bands but nothing that was ever played on the radio. I tried to put my them in descending order according to how much I like each artist, my favorite being on top and tenth favorite as number ten. This doesn't necessarily mean that the particular songs are in that order though. I had a really tough time narrowing it down to ten artists but I think that this will really give you a sense of my musical taste. This is probably my favorite playlist to date and it contains some of my all time favorite songs. Anyways, here it is and hope you enjoy it.
Top 10 Songs You Should Know - Week 13 - Feb. 12-18 20071. Third Eye Blind - God of Wine2. Lifehouse - Six Cycle Carousel3. Better than Ezra - Special4. Barenaked Ladies - Light Up My Room5. Jimmy Eat World - Kill6. Eve 6 - Amphetamines7. Switchfoot - Redemption8. Goo Goo Dolls - Hate this Place9. Duncan Sheik - For You10. The Wallflowers - Closer to You
Here's the link for the whole playlist: Top Ten Unknown Songs From My Favorite Artists
We are back on schedule with a new playlist for the second week of January. This playlist is no different then the others, great songs, some you might of heard of, some you haven't. It's nice to finally get back in the swing of things and hopefully I'll have a tribute or album review up in the next couple days. This playlist features some artists previously mentioned and some I haven't but nonetheless great songs. Enjoy and thanks for listening.
Top 10 Songs You Should Know - Week 8 - Jan. 8-14 20061. Girl Eyes - Eve 62. Lonely Nation - Switchfoot3. Boston - Augustana4. Shelter - Big City Rock5. The Warmth - Incubus6. Happiness Is - The Verve Pipe7. Open Your Eyes - Alter Bridge8. Polaris - Jimmy Eat World9. Time Stands Still - All-American Rejects10. Breathless - Better than Ezra