Most would agree most popular artists out there have something truly special to give to their fans. This goes above the typical attributes like raw talent, amazing songs, nice voice, or even a very marketable look, sound and image. Theres something truly infectious at the core of these artists that simply makes us feel good when we listen to them. Whatever "it" is - they all seem to have "it". 

Today I listened to the latest CD from Illinois based Richard Anthony (Love is the Power) (2011). Venturing to the internet I get the impression Anthony is clearly an up and coming artist. From start to finish this CD from Anthony delivers the goods and is very pleasurable. It has a very strong Alternative Rock quality to it and even dabbles in Jazz and Pop. Any fans of any of these musical styles will enjoy this latest release from Anthony. Its clearly marketed for those who like the mystique of a male vocal delivery. I get the impression Anthony is rolling with what he knows as not only a performers but a potent songwriter as well. Favorite tracks include Track 1 (We Belong) and the title track. CD has an amazing feel to it with amazing lyrics and songs. Within each one of these compositions Anthony finds his musical mojo and bares his soul. Trust mw when I say you will like what you hear. The sampling/band/musical touches are spot on and just makes the whole CD even more marketable. The overall vibe very uplifting and like the title suggests has everything you would expect. 

I see Anthony as a diamond in the rough, wit an amazing amount of potential. As time goes by he will no doubt hear from this Science Teacher-Artist again. I am eager to hear what his next release will sound like. I am also eager to see what the future holds for Anthony. I rarely give CD Reviews worth 10 stars - but this in one of them. In close most famous artists out there have "it" I'm not so sure what it but Richard Anthony has whatever "it" may be. 

Michael Morrison (UK) Scotland 

Edited by Cyrus Rhodes 
Rating: 10/10

Have you listed to the Radio lately, really have you? Is it me or is something horribly wrong with today's music. Do you remember when music actually had really instruments in them with real people playing them? No kidding. How about good songwriting performed by artists that not only wrote the music but poured their heats and souls into the performances - holding nothing back. Why? Because they meant every word of the lyrics they wrote. Now when one listens to the radio what do you hera: a pretty face, cookie cutter songwriting, crafted via a microphone, some fancy sampling and a overly loud mix that sounds more like a commercial than a song. Yes the magic is all but gone from modern-day music, and people are wondering why. Well I Will tell you. Because to many artists are not being true to themselves when it comes to their  musical expression, that’s why. More artists need to be themselves - actually kind of like Illinois based Physics teacher Richard Anthony.   

“Love is the Power” is his latest release and it has much to commend it. Admittedly, there is a whole lot of variety to these arrangements and performances: The line up consisting of many mainly Anthony. He’s got an infectious voice and a rock solid band musicians and Top Flight Sampling and Programming backing him up. Second: The songwriting: just cuts to the chase and delivers via compelling lyrics and an emotional vocal front. Yes all of this makes for deadly combination. Even more impressive are the overall message: powerful, genuine, passionate, inspirational are some words I would use to describe them. The songs are heavy, yet commercially viable delivering music that's very melodic, and catchy with a Techno-Pop edge. Yes - I honestly can hear this stuff on the Radio.  Amazing tunes with hooky melodies and a thick low end dance grooves, but more importantly lyrics that cut right to the core of what Love is - yes. What I like most about the CD is there is no attempt at deliver what I call over the top flashy rock with a big beat and an overcompensating commercial sound. Favorite Track: “We Belong” and the title track.

“Love is the Power” is an endearing CD that is powerful and entertaining in it’s posture. I could hear this at a party, club or on the radio.  I would imagine in time we will hear more from this amazing artist as 2012 unfolds. Time will tell but I can honestly say this is one artist that had much in the way of potential, and fills the modern day musical void quite well with music that is – well genuine, powerful and above all full of love. 

Rating: 5/5 

Connected Part One (CD) / 2011 Self / 9 Tracks /

“Connected” is the introduction that many listeners will have to Richard Anthony; the catchy pop that opens up the disc provides a perfect backdrop that Anthony can then build off of. “Even If” continues many of the trends that are initially present during “Connected”, placing Anthony’s vocals at the forefront of the track. The guitar work and drums present during this track provide additional levels of complexity; “Even If” is the sort of track that will open up nicely to repeat listening. “Make Me Yours” is another track that establishes Anthony’s sound as something that is amenable to fans of a wide array of genres and sounds.

The track succeeds on a break from the sounds broached during the first few tracks; there is a Depeche Mode meets Cure feel that gradually gains momentum as the track continues to spin on. “Connected Part One” is the rare example of an album that gets better as it spins on – late disc track “Charge Me Up” is a perfect example of this. “Charge Me Up” is a success because it does not rely on the tacks that Anthony has taken on previous album track. The electronic-infused instrumentation that begins the track adds a certain drive to the track that is otherwise unparalleled. Anthony’s vocals take up the challenge and take listeners through a five minute-plus journey.

Despite the fact that there are many different influences and musical styles that are present during “Connected Part One”, listeners will nevertheless find a common thread in Anthony’s vocals. No matter what tempo or feel is fostered during the track, Anthony’s voice acts as the glue. It is due to this fact that “Connected Part One” succeeds so well – one just needs to listen to a track like “Do You Ever Wonder Why” to understand this. The track represents for me the range of twists and turns that Anthony provides his listeners, as well as acting as the jumping off point for any subsequent recordings or live dates that he may enter into. Check this album out today.

Top Tracks: Connected, Back To You

Rating: 8.3/10

 

-James McQuiston

Editor, NeuFutur (print magazine)

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