Friday, 25 September 2009

Free Download Friday #28: Lita Ford

I think I have mentioned Classic Rock Magazine's Track of the Day before. Relatively recently, they gave a link to a free download from Lita Ford.

Lita Ford 24
Originally uploaded by Shadowgate
The download is of a track called Crave. It sounds quite dark and brooding.

Perhaps Lita's vocals don't quite have the right level of menace for this track, however, they've brought in a backing vocalist (not sure who) with a good metalish growl. I think it works - it certainly gives a good contrast to Lita's voice in this track.

I hope you enjoy it too. Let me know what you think. Also, have you discovered any of Classic Rock's downloads that are especially worth listening to?

Download: Crave

Monday, 21 September 2009

More Sponsored Music

I have posted before on sponsorship as a way of rewarding the artists while allowing fans to download music for free. To that end, I probably should have noted the Coke Zone promotion over the Summer where Coke were giving away a free iTunes download with every bottle of coke purchased. The downloads were from a very limited subset of iTunes downloads but there was plenty there of interest. Among other things, I managed to download an entire Wolfmother album. :-)

キットカット Kit-Kat
Originally uploaded by kamoda
Unfortunately, with the summer fading already, the Coke summer promotion seems to be over too. However, just as one sponsored free download offer closes, another opens up!

Now it is Kit Kat that is offering free downloads (In the UK and ROI at least). Inside every clearly labelled Kit Kat Perfect Break wrapper is a unique code number that can be entered into the Perfect Break site and turned into a free download. It appears that you are limited to five downloads per account but the downloads are high quality MP3 files with no DRM in sight. :-)

The site claims to have hundreds of thousands of tracks available for download, and although I haven't counted them all, there is certainly a wide range of tracks available, so I have no reason to doubt them! I'm not sure why they have gone for such a low limit of five songs but apart from that quibble, I am impressed with what Kit Kat have made available for free.

First Coke, then Kit Kat. Who's next?

Friday, 18 September 2009

Free Download Friday #27: More from Suburban Home Records

It seems a bit of a cheat to feature Suburban Home Records twice in the one week (see Suburban Home Records) but they have so much stuff available for free download, I couldn't resist highlighting a couple in a Free Download Friday post.

Austin Lucas 8.6.09 - 02
Originally uploaded by elawgrrl
Of the tracks on the media page that I've had a chance to listen to so far, the band I've liked the best is On High. They don't seem to have an album on Surburban Home Records but they do have a demo EP with three tracks that can be downloaded for free.

I especially like the track Pain You. A real classic rock/metal sound but a track that goes beyond the standard fare and it has definite leanings toward prog rock. Aparently they hoped to release an album in the spring of 2008 but for whatever reason, it doesn't seem to have come together.

I gave a link to the media page on my previous post but Jeff also found a free sample album they made available earlier this year which has a number of tracks not available for download elsewhere.

There are hours of material available! Brilliant! I hope the chance to access all this material for free broadens and expands Suburban Home Records fan base and that they find giving away samples like this pays off in the long run.

Certainly, I'll be keeping an eye on the Suburban Home Records and checking out some of their roster more thoroughly - especially since much of it seems to be available through eMusic.

(Small Print: I've talked about eMusic before and provide the link here for you if you want to check it out yourself. Please note that if you sign up after following the links on this blog, I get a few extra downloads for sending you in their direction.)

Monday, 14 September 2009

Suburban Home Records

Suburban Home Records is celebrating its 14th birthday by offering everyone a free album. You give them your email before the end of September and they let you choose any album from their back catalogue. Call me old-fashioned but I thought on your birthday, people gave you gifts! ...Not that I'm complaining though.

I thought about keeping this until Friday and I may revisit it on a Friday, but it is such a brilliant deal and there is so much to chose from, I thought letting you know earlier was better than later.

It was Jeff at Totally Free Music that alerted me to this one but we both have the same problem... we don't know enough about the artists to decide which album to get. (Not the worst problem to have!). In his post about this offer (Free album from Suburban Home Records), he has asked for people to give him suggestions. I thought I'd have a go with Google forms.

Over the next few days, I'll be listening to tracks from their regular download page and posting reviews. The form I'm using is shown below, so feel free to add your own reviews. The results can be seen in this Google Doc spreadsheet. Hopefully, before the deadline of the end of September, there will be a few reviews of the free tracks to help guide you to the right CD for you.

Why not choose a couple of tracks you like the look of and add some reviews?

Friday, 11 September 2009

Free Download Friday #26: Dave Arcari

Another short and sweet post today and more free downloads from

The artist is called Dave Arcari and I came across his name because he writes a blog for Rock Radio. The tracks available on are Got Me Electric and Soul Of A Man. They should give you a good idea of what Dave sounds like. Essentially we are talking dirty slide guitar, gruff and gritty vocals and a style of blues that borrows heavily from punk, country and rockabilly.

Check him out and let me know what you think.

Thursday, 10 September 2009

Concert Memories #01: Hawkwind

My first ever concert was going to be to see Rush. I think I may even have bought the tickets. Then my friend said we should go and see Hawkwind. I was 14 years old, I had only just been introduced to rock music and I had never heard of Hawkwind... but I agreed to go anyway.

I suspect it was the first concert any of us had ever been to. You can see how little we knew about concerts because we bought tickets for the Circle. (We thought that was the posh seats and that we'd have a better view!) The tickets cost £1.50, which seems unbelievably cheap by today's standards. However, I earned £0.80 a week from my paper round, so it cost me two weeks' wages!

As I found out more about Hawkwind, I did get slightly concerned. I was worried that we'd be surrounded by drug using hippies. And when I heard about Stacia, I started to panic that my parents would hear about her too and that I wouldn't be allowed to go. (Actually, since I was only 14, I am amazed I was allowed to go at all. We went in on the train and came back late at night on our own. Different times!)

Needless to say, Stacia had left the band some time before and when we got to the concert, as far as I could tell, there were no drug using hippies anywhere in sight (or scent).

To be honest, I remember very little about this, my first concert, and my first experience of the legendary Glasgow Apollo. I remember thinking it was one of the best events that I'd ever attended. I remember that it was loud. I remember enjoying the music and afterwards, I bought the album they were promoting: Quark, Strangeness and Charm - an album I still really enjoy listening to. And I remember that I couldn't wait to go to more concerts... lots more.

I loved it! I loved the spectacle. I loved the noise. And most of all, I loved the excitement generated by the live event. I was hooked.

How much do you remember about your first concert? What is it about live music that makes it so exciting?

Monday, 7 September 2009

7 Digital: Free downloads

This was almost a Free Music Friday post but the downloads seem too transient so I thought I'd do it as a normal post...

The Googly eyePod
Originally uploaded by DavidDMuir
A few weeks ago, W H Smith's were selling magazines with a code for ten free downloads from 7digital attached. I signed up for the 7digital site for free (no credit card details necessary), had a look around and downloaded my ten tracks. They sell a good range of mp3 tracks (and audiobooks) which have no DRM restrictions which seem to be reasonably priced and the ten free track were downloaded without any fuss.

As part of the sign in process, I agreed to get email updates from 7digital - updates which contain details of weekly free downloads. Mostly these seem to be from up and coming bands, however this week's downloads included the Black Crowes, so it looks like they do some established acts too. Unfortunately, the track is the same one that I featured in Free Download Friday #22: Black Crowes. :-(

Also in the Editors choice is a track from Kyte. It turns out to be a cover of Peter Gabriel's Solsbury Hill - a cover that rips the heart out of a fantastic track (IMHO). However, as a huge Gabriel fan, perhaps I'm not entirely unbiased. Anyone want to defend Kyte's cover?

The Black Crowes and Kyte tracks are from four identified as the "Editor's Choice" but there are a load of other tracks on the Free MP3 Dowloads page. The only free download that leapt out at me this week was Richter Scale Madness by ...And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead but I'm sure there are others there worth investigating.

I'm not on commission from 7digital but thought that a site making a good number of tracks available like this for free download was worth mentioning.

Any thoughts on other free tracks from 7digital that are worth a listen

Friday, 4 September 2009

Free Download Friday #25: The Aurora Project

Short and sweet today. Some free prog rock downloads from

The band are called The Aurora Project and has three progtastic tracks available as free downloads. Of the three tracks available (photonic Reunion, The Betrayal and The Untold Prophecy) I think photonic Reunion is my favourite.

What do you think? Progtastic or progpoor?

Thursday, 3 September 2009

The day the music revived

Back in March I wrote about about how YouTube had blocked music videos (YouTube and PRS Fall Out). Today, the ban was lifted and PRS and Google seem to have come to some agreement. You can read about it in the BBC News report: YouTube Lifts Music Video Block.

It's not clear who the winner was but now music fans can enjoy music videos legally on YouTube... like this one from Parlophone Records. Enjoy!

Wednesday, 2 September 2009

Help Logan... again

I wrote about Logan in Free Download Friday #16: Logan and then did another post later about how they wanted support to do well in a competition (Logan need your vote). Well they are looking for help again...

Logan are listed on the Sign Me To Roadrunner Records site. The basic idea of this site is bands put themselves up, and music fan rate the band and their music. If you want to help, go to the Sign Me To Roadrunner Records site, sign up as a scout and start rating bands. And if you like Logan half as much as I do, go to their page, rate their music and give them some feedback. At the moment, most of the comments are positive but for some reason, their ratings are fairly low.

I think Logan would be a great addition to the Roadrunner roster and would benefit from the exposure that would come from signing to a label like that. The only problem I can foresee is that currently, Roadrunner artists don't seem to be on eMusic. Their excellent album Cruel Little World is there and it would be a pity if signing to a major label means that I can't download their new stuff from eMusic. However, I'm willing to make that sacrifice if it means they get the fame they deserve. :-)