Hard Rock Daddy presents Music Discovery Monday – 5/2/16.
Music Discovery Monday shines a light on artists that are not getting the radio attention that they deserve, while also showcasing new singles by established bands that are likely to get airplay in the future.
This week, Music Discovery Monday features an exclusive interview with Ditchwater drummer Jason Angone, who discusses the message behind “Save Your Apologies.”
In addition to appearing on the embedded YouTube playlist below, all songs featured on Music Discovery Monday can be listened to individually by clicking on the hyper-linked song titles above each review.
ADAM WALDMAN – (Publisher, Hard Rock Daddy)
DITCHWATER – “Save Your Apologies”
You would think that a band with origins that date back to the mid-‘90s would have either made it or packed it in by now, but there is something to be said for perseverance. Social media can be something of a double-edged sword; it has its share of negativity, but some very positive things can come from it as well. If not for a Facebook friend (whose musical tastes and social views are very similar to mine), who knows when I would have discovered this hard rock unit from Chicago that features a heavy, groove-oriented sound that is reminiscent of Sevendust. Not only will you be seeing more Ditchwater features on Hard Rock Daddy, you will also be seeing a regular column in the not-too-distant future from the person that turned me on to this kickass band.
Like many bands, Ditchwater has gone through its share of lineup changes through the years. After a seven-year “hiatus” between 2007-2014 (which featured the occasional show and single release), the band returned to full strength in December of 2015, reforming with some long-time members and one newcomer. The band’s 2015 release (Into The Storm) features a collection of songs that were recorded during their “hiatus.” Rather than rest on the laurels of work that was completed during that time period, Ditchwater is already working on a new album. “Save Your Apologies” offers a nice introduction to a band that, by all rights, should become a staple on Active Rock radio. I encourage you to check out the rest of the band’s music as well.
In an exclusive interview with Hard Rock Daddy, Ditchwater drummer Jason Angone shares the message behind “Save Your Apologies” and reflects back on the recording of the song…
“We recorded ‘Save Your Apologies’ in 2011 as the band was re-emerging from a hiatus. The song is featured on our recent full length release, Into the Storm. This is a track that showcases a bit of the heavier side of the band. It comes from a place of just having enough of the naysayers and the people in your life that always seem to be out to keep you down, sometimes for no other reason but to see you fail. It’s that feeling of guilt that those people can project on you – making you feel like you’ve done something wrong – that comes through in the song. Finding the strength in yourself to put those people in their place, to let them know they can’t control or manipulate you anymore is something that isn’t always easy to find in ourselves. You’ve really got to tell yourself that you’re not going to be held down anymore, that you’re going to make it through, that you’re not just going to persevere, but triumph in spite of what they did to you. Live your life, not someone’s vision of who you should be, and never apologize for who you are.
The music really complements the layers in the lyrics. The riff-laden intro of the song drops into a solid groove for the verse and gives the audience a bit of the heavier side of the band, then the strong melody defining the chorus let’s Mike Meadows’ voice really come through. The dynamic between the heavier side and the strong melody combined with the lyrics is something that really seems to connect with our fans. It’s a little like our song ‘It’s Over,’ in that the lyrics hit upon a feeling that everyone can relate to. It’s a privilege and an honor hearing the feedback from fans about how the songs resonate with them, and takes on a personal meaning for each fan.”
UGLY MELON – “Darkest Side”
Ugly Melon is another band whose origins go back a ways. The band is one of the best new acts to emerge in recent times. These Canadian rockers have found a way to blend decades of hard rock into a timeless sound that would have had as much appeal in the ‘80s and ‘90s as it does in the new millennium. “Darkest Side” is aptly titled, as it taps into the darker side of the band’s sound. From the hauntingly tortured Alice In Chains vibe that begins with the first note, to the Metallica-esque undertones, to Tony LaSelva’s soul-penetrating vocals “Darkest Side” is powerful on a number of levels. With a Dio-era, Rainbow mystique – courtesy of Lu Cachie’s guitar work – this song has an epic feel that is far beyond what you would expect from a band’s debut work.
ANDY CHEUNG – HRD Music Scout
MOONSPELL – “Domina”
“Domina” is the single from this Portuguese goth/doom metal band’s 10th studio album, Extinct. Their songwriting gets better with each album that they put out (as evident in this song). The catchy chorus, the beautiful guitar work and melodic sadness that this song exhibits, proves once again that Moonspell is one of the best, hard-working metal bands in the world.
PARADISE LOST – “Beneath Broken Earth”
Following the theme this week of goth/doom/death metal bands, Paradise Lost is considered to be one of the first bands in this genre, and have influenced many bands after them. The Plague Within is the band’s 14th studio release, and “Beneath Broken Earth” shows that they have not lost their slow musical dirges. This song feels like a leisurely stroll through a cemetery at night, while dark-robed figures carrying bonfires follow you. These veterans of doom still have the sound after all these years.
ROB DELL’AQUILA – HRD Music Scout
METAL CHURCH – “Signal Path”
It’s been 20 long years, but vocalist Mike Howe fits right back in with his old bandmates in Metal Church. Their 11th studio album, aptly named XI, is chock full of thrashing riffs and heavy beats with plenty of melodic moments. And there, as well, is all of the stunning technique and clockwork precision that the band is famous for.
HAKEN – “Initiate”
Progressive metal band Haken has just released their fourth studio album, Affinity. Ethereal vocals and keyboards meet monstrous riffs and a pounding rhythm section on this single from this British band. Elements of classic ‘70s prog weave themselves effortlessly through a modern vibe.
CHRIS HERZEGOVITCH – HRD Music Scout
VALERIAN – “Stardust Revelation”
Indonesia’s Valerian breaks from the gate with this infectious title track from their last album, Stardust Revelation. Along with a driving and dynamic rhythm section, the guitar work from Dimas Bramantyo and Harman Satrya is excellent.
STRYPER – “Fallen”
Although the glam image of Stryper is gone, their signature style still remains strong after all these years. The production sound on “Fallen” (and for much of the album Yaweh) has less polish and more grit, emphasizing familiar power chords and guitar licks, along with a thick locomotive rhythm. Michael Sweet’s voice is as powerful as always with the usual terrific supporting harmonics.
To be considered for Music Discovery Monday, please e-mail a link to the song being submitted on YouTube and an artist bio to – submissions@MusicDiscoveryMonday.com