YVR [unedited] Music Review


Gramophone PR


Today marks 3 years, 1 month, and 1 day since my last relationship ended. I have worked very hard on myself during that time, but there’s no doubt that being single for this long is something I’m not used to.

It’s been lonely at times, but it’s also been a time of self-discovery. I also realized that I don’t always have to be with someone, but I realized that I don’t always have to be single too.

There are times I’ve wanted to reach out to my ex-girlfriend, but I know that wouldn’t be healthy. She wasn’t healthy for me, and I wasn’t healthy for her… That’s just how it is. It’s for that reason that I refrain from reaching out.

“’How Have You Been’ looks back at the impact that our past loves had on us, how even after years of moving on we still carry pieces of them with us. Not in a romantic way, but in a curious, caring kind of way,” (YVR’s press release from Gramophone Media PR).

Prior to releasing their first EP (Night Days) in 2019, Courtney and Stephen Stahl worked with international acts as Jenae (Courtney Stahl) and Buddro (Stephen Stahl). Courtney wrote numerous songs for major acts like Red Velvet, EXO, and Amber Liu. Stephen produced with the likes of Chris Daughtry, Blasterjaxx, and Morgan Page.

The married couple that call themselves YVR have been making music for others with a resume that includes 4 million records sold and a combined ten #1 singles, but are now starting their own journey together as a duo.

What is your fan base like?

“They are fierce, fun and fabulous.”

Songwriting for me has become very personal over the years. Stephen and I have the best songwriting chemistry of anyone I’ve worked with.

Courtney Stahl to American Songwriter (4/20/2020)

Three things that make a 5 star song in my book are: great songwriting, catchy melodies, and an authentic sound.

Basically every YVR song achieves all of these things, which is no surprise seeing Courtney’s success with writing and Stephen’s success with producing. How Have You Been is a great song that adds on to the depth of their music collection.

To narrow down my five favorite songs, I’d have to say Heartless, Unique, Pay, Talking In Your Sleep, and How Have You Been are my top 5 songs.

When a relationship ends, you always hold a place in your heart for that person, regardless of who ended it. The lyrics in (How Have You Been?) reflect on how breaking someone’s heart can sometimes hurt worse than being heartbroken.

YVR (8/14/2020)

Right now, there are currently no releases that I know of that are planned to be released. Whatever direction they make, however, they say they want to be “completely authentic to ourselves in our music.”

If you want to stay up-to-date with future releases for YVR, make sure you follow and like the links below

I would like to thank Brittany Bowler (Gramophone Media PR) for connecting me with Courtney and Stephen Stahl. It took a while, but I am very happy to review YVR.

YVR Links:

Gramophone Media PR links:

Unedited Music Blog links:

Hope everyone has a great week, and remember to stay safe and wear a mask if you have to go out into public. Also, respect each other out there, it’s really not that hard.

How Have You Been? by YVR (2020)

Overall: 5/5

How Have You Been?: 5/5

Night Days: 5/5

Top Song: Heartless (2019)

C.SHIROCK [unedited] Music Review

Chuck Shirock (C.SHIROCK), taken by Daniella Midenge

I remember the first time I heard Bono’s voice, it was also the first time I’ve ever heard a musician from Ireland. I don’t remember exactly what the first song I listened to by U2, but I think it was either One, Sunday Bloody Sunday, or New Year’s Day.

I never really thought anyone would sound exactly like his voice, Bono has that kind of voice that is so powerful that it will never be duplicated. That’s what I thought before I ever heard of C.SHIROCK, however.

Singer-songwriter Chuck Shirock has been making music ever since he started playing piano at age 4 making up songs on his own. He later got a guitar that his Dad got for him, and soon after started a band. “I wanted to be the singer, and since then I’ve never looked back! Now, making music, singing, writing and performing are the best ways I know how to let my emotions out. It’s one of the only places I know how to truly be free in my expression and my emotions,” Chuck says.

After successfully gaining a huge fanbase with SHIROCK, Chuck’s solo project (C.SHIROCK) is seeing a lot of success with attracting loyal fans. “It means so much me to know that this music that I pour my heart into connects with you, and becomes a part of the soundtrack to your life,” he says.

“I love seeing the familiar names of fans that I remember from years ago – maybe we met at a show or took a picture together, and now years later they’re commenting on a new music video or single… you develop a sense of friendship and family with your biggest fans. When you see them at a show it feels incredible to know that they’ve walked with you through so much life and a very personal journey of songs and lyrics. So to every fan that takes the time to write, comment and reply – thank you!”

~Chuck Shirock [C.SHIROCK] (5/20/2020)

C.SHIROCK’s music shows a great progression in sound over the years, and his best production definitely comes from the last five tracks (averaging a 4.9/5 rating, higher than his overall rating of 4.8/5). Songs that have recently stood out are Stand With Me Tonight and his most popular song that has attracted over 250k streams on Spotify, Lost to the Night.

His newest track, All We Have is this Moment, is about being present and living in the moment. “I am the kind of person that’s always thinking about the next step… about the future, and the steps I want to take to get there. This can be a strength at times, but it can also be a huge hinderance to enjoying the process and being present to life today. It’s so easy to miss, but this very moment is all we have,” says Chuck.

This song has come out the ideal time, a time where everyone in the world has been forced to stop being so busy. It’s a perfect time to learn how to live in the moment, and I truly hope this song will remind the ones who need this the most!

Before moving, I absolutely have to address the remixes I have found in C.SHIROCK’s artist library. While I probably wouldn’t put them in my Songs/Remixes playlist, they certianly bring eclecticism to his collection. Some of his best remixes are Any Minute Now (JT Daly Remix), and Bodytalkr’s remix of Back Against the Wall.

“Over the years it’s changed… sometimes people compare my vocals to Bono, other times I get Peter Gabriel comparisons with the song writing… certain songs have gotten comparisons to Coldplay, some to Prince, some to Bruce Springsteen.”


It is very important to be honest and vulnerable in Chuck’s music, and that is something that he will not lose sight of in the future. All We Have is this Moment is one of those tracks, and it is a single from an upcoming album called Evidence of Things Unseen that will be released later this year. Aside from that, he’s been writing and “dreaming up the next album” during this whole quarantine.

Other than that, he really doesn’t know what the future looks like for C.SHIROCK. “As things evolve with the current situation, I’ll do my best to stay flexible… I was hoping to tour around the release of Evidence of Things Unseen, but given the current situation, that may not be an option. If touring isn’t an option, then my plan is to go straight back into the studio and being workin on the next album,” he says. He is also working on a poetry book and an instrumental album. You can find his latest news on his website (cshirock.com)!

I would like to thank Lydia Reed from LPR Agency for getting me connected with Chuck, and thank you to him for answering the interview questions! Additionally, shoutout to Daniella Midenge for taking the cover photo and Emilia Pare for the featured image!

You can follow C.SHIROCK on both Instagram and Facebook, and stream his music on Spotify, SoundCloud, and YouTube.

You can follow Unedited Music Blog on Instagram (@unedited_music_blog) and Facebook (@uneditedmb), and stream our playlists on Spotify and SoundCloud.

Just so everyone knows, Sunday June 21st is my birthday! I am planning to release a new logo on that day, and I am very excited about this one! It was drawn and photoshopped by myself!

Have a fantastic week, stay home if your sick, remember that racism is wrong, and congratulations to all college and High School grads of 2020!

All We Have is this Moment by C.SHIROCK (2020)

Overall: 4.8/5

All We Have is this Moment: 5/5

Lost to the Night: 5/5

Eyes Of Sorrow: 5/5

First Snow: 4.8/5

Stand with me Tonight: 5/5

Confess Your Love: 4.9/5

Wake Up: 4.5/5

Any Minute Now: 5/5

Back Against the Wall: 5/5

Haunted: 4.8/5

Water to Sea: 5/5

Top Song: Lost to the Night (2019)

Simply Vika [unedited] Music Review

Vika and her Shadow
Simply Vika

For the past few weeks, I have realized how toxic the way we as Americans are living is.

A white person most likely will be diagnosed with a mental health problem at least every day, but a black person will not even have enough money to buy a healthcare plan that would allow them coverage for a quality professional psychologist.

Meanwhile, the best Women’s National Soccer (or Football depending where you live) Team in the world is paid less than one of the worst Men’s Soccer National Team in the world. In other words, the USA Men’s National Soccer Team players average $60k while USA Women’s National Soccer Team players average $40k.

This past Women’s World Cup, USA won the national title. This past Men’s World Cup, USA didn’t even make it to the beginning stages.

So why am I bringing this up? Well for one, it’s not to piss people off… That’s the last thing I want to do! I am bringing this up because that’s exactly what Simply Vika is trying to raise awareness for.

Vika is raising awareness for women empowerment, equality, and personal growth. These topics are certianly being focused on across America and even the world.

But in my opinion, it’s something that everyone should be working on EVERYDAY.

Vika grew up in a very musical family, and she felt it was always only a hobby. “But somewhere on the way, during my childhood and teenage years, I heard the phrase ‘singer is not a career’, and it got to me,” she says. When she was 22 years old, she realized how much it affected her as she came out of the army and started going down her own path. At first, she questioned if she even had a career passion, but then she realized how much music meant to her. “Music excites me, music helps me, music is my way to communicate with myself and the rest of the world,” Vika says. 

“Right after I decided that I am going to make my dream come true, I realised that there is a lot of discrimination issues in our world, I started noticing more and more all the things that are wrong, from the smallest things like dynamics at a work place to larger things like harassments”. Vika says these things that she finds unjust is what inspires her music. She felt like she wanted to be one to help provoke a change in the world, and wanted to help make this world be a better place for everyone. She wants people to chase their dreams like she is, and not let other’s opinions to hold them back like it almost did to her.

Vika is in the beginning stages of her career, so it is hard to gauge what her fan base is like right now. She does know that most of the people that support her music are girls and women.

“We are all different in our unique special way, we all are people, and no matter what what race, gender or nationality we are coming from – we are equal, and we deserve to be treated that way.”

~Vika (6/8/2020)

Vika’s songs are very different compared to other songs I usually review, and I am actually happy about that because not only does it allow me to write about something that is very relevant to what’s going on in today’s USA news… But I am also broadening the Unedited music community as well!

Stigma stood out to me as a very poignant song that wanted to get a message apart, and it did very much that. I think that Vika’s voice is very straightforward in this song, and not to mention how important the song’s meaning is. If I didn’t find passion in music discovery, then this blog would never existed in my life. So I am happy to say that I also stand for following your dreams!

Her newest song I’m Trying will have to be my favorite because of how personal and vulnerable the song is. “It’s basically me pouring my heart out. I talk about how hard it is to succeed, how hard it is to stay creative while everyone talks about money all the time, about how hard it is to stay YOU in our society. So literally, it’s about me trying,” remarks Vika. It is indeed a very cruel and sometimes unforgiving world we all live in. But believing in yourself like Vika is everyday is something that always needs to come first before anything or anyone during your daily life.

“Many of my songs are very sarcastic and criticising society. I am here to tell people that if you want music as a career – do it, if you want to be an astronaut – do it, if you want to get married or if you don’t want to get married – do only what you feel is good for you.”


When I asked what Vika has learnt about herself during quarantine, she told me “nothing I didn’t know already. But it proved to me that I am not a home person.  I work the best when I’m busy. I need a crazy schedule to keep moving. Too much free time, I start losing it and I go crazy. My productivity is amazing when I have 0 free minutes on my schedule, so I’m waiting for one craziness to end so my personal one could start again.”

With that said, Vika is continuing to work hard on a project of songs “that (are) going to concentrate on all kinds of abuse and violence,” she says.

After the pandemic clears up enough, Vika is looking into volunteering more with local shelters and organizations to start “change from the inside, to physically help people, listen to their stories, be there for them, support them and help them build a better future. I want to start organizing fundraisers, collect donations and create more awareness,” she says.

These two pieces, her 6 songs she’s working on and the volunteer work she will be seeking out will be molded into what will be her next EP.

I would like to thank Simply Vika for staying in touch and waiting patiently for this article that was in the works for a few weeks.

You can listen to Vika on Spotify and SoundCloud, and follow her on Facebook and Instagram.

You can follow Unedited Music Blog on Facebook (@uneditedmb) and Instagram (@unedited_music_blog), and listen to other music reviewed on this blog on Spotify and SoundCloud.

I hope everyone has a wonderful rest of their week, and remember to stay safe and stay at home if your feeling sick! If you are protesting remember to do it peacefully, and know that I want your voice to be heard but wear a mask and remember hand sanitizer!

I’m Trying by Simply Vika (2020)

Overall: 4.7/5

I’m Trying: 4.9./5

Stigma: 4.5/5

In the Air Tonight: 4.5/5

Mama: 4.7/5

Top Song: I’m Trying (2020)

Fjøra [unedited] Music Review

Alexandra Petrkovski (Fjora)

“Remember the first time you went to a show and saw your favorite band. You wore their shirt, and sang every word. You didn’t know anything about scene politics, haircuts, or what was cool. All you knew was that this music made you feel different from anyone you shared a locker with. Someone finally understood you. This is what music is about,” Gerard Way.

“To be honest, I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t creating and existing in the music space,” says Alexandra. “I come from a very musical family; both of my parents completed their piano levels and my father was a musician (I grew up with a home studio).”

Fjora’s music is primarily inspired by dramatic and emotive musical aspects. She admires cinematic music and film, from which she has a deep musical background. 

Her fan base is made up of a wide variety of different listeners, which she loves. Her music is used on multiple TV and film platforms, along with playlists on Spotify and Apple music. She’s very thankful to be connecting with many listeners of all ages and from the across the world. “My music is all-inclusive, my motto is: the more the merrier,” she says. 

“I have an extreme love of cinematic music and film scoring (my background is actually in these musical styles) and so no matter what kind of direction a song takes with me, it always begins from a need to move people and to tell a story.”

-Alexandra Petrkovski (4/13/2020)

To begin my critique I’ll first say this… Why is her music not featured on Game of Thrones???!!!

It’s almost impossible to explain how amazing and different her music is. She really uses her powerful voice to her advantage. Her cinematic and dark pop style is something that seperates her from the regular pop musician.

Focusing on storytelling is not too common nowadays I feel, this generation of musicians really love sharing their own story versus telling a story that’s made up. However, the one’s who choose to go against the grain usually create the most unique and creative sounds in their music. This is the exact case for Fjora.

One of Alexandra’s more popular songs is Hurricane, which is a duet she did with Zayde Wolf. The song is about the whirlwind of emotion and potential conflict between two people. “This song is special to me as it ´flips the image´ – instead of the storm being the external, it is the very result of the intrinsic and internal relation,” she says.

Hurricane is one of my favorite songs by her, other amazing collaborative songs that she’s released has been with producers and musicians like Duke & Jones, Mario Ayuda, and Unedited Band of the Day’s Bhavior… “Not many moments where we aren’t laughing and goofing around, which is part of some of my own personal favourite moments of the creative process generally. I think it’s important to work with creatives who let you be yourself; from the serious sides to the silly sides,” says Alexandra.

Her song with Duke & Jones called Delusions can also be found on one of my favorite Spotify playlists called Creamy, which features artists like Louis the Child, Illenium, and San Holo. Another amazing Spotify playlist called Bass Arcade features her song Shivers featuring Jaenga, this playlist features Rezz, Cheat Codes, Loyal by ODESZA, and Pills by Svniivan!

“There is a new video game that I had the pleasure of being involved with, as well as am currently working on a vocal sample pack for Splice, which is very exciting! So, all amazing things on the rise!”


With someone who’s been collaborating with a very long list of musicians on top of her own projects, it doesn’t shock me to hear that she is very very busy with more projects. “I am working on several awesome collaborations in the EDM/pop world that I’m pretty pumped on, as well as some killer cinematronic ´film trailer sounding´ songs. I also just finished some emotionally-charged songs that explore my softer side,” says Alexandra.

She also hopes to continue creating music for film and TV shows. It’s her goal to day to create music for a featured film.

“I’ve got upcoming releases very soon actually! Later this month I’ve got several releases, and then throughout May, June, and July be ready for some summer bangers,” says Fjora.

It’s always really cool to connect with musicians who have worked with people I’ve featured on UMB too. That’s exactly how I connected with Alexandra, she actually was the vocalist for Bhavior who was one of the first Unedited Band of the Day on Instagram. I highly suggest you go listen to their song called Loser now on all streaming platforms!

You can follow Fjora on Instagram and Facebook, as well stream her unbelievable collection of music on YouTube, Spotify, and SoundCloud.

You can follow Unedited Music Blog on Facebook (@uneditedmb) and Instagram (@unedited_music_blog), and listen to other musicians who’ve been covered on Spotify!

Please continue to stay home and healthy, musicians and the world needs you to! Have a good week as well!!!!

Cruel World by Fjora (2019)

Overall: 4.9/5

Ready for Anything: 5/5

Devilś Worst Nightmare: 5/5

Touch: 5/5

Love Me Like Forever: 4.8/5

Don´t Miss You: 4.7/5

Delusions: 5/5

Cruel World: 5/5

Hurricane: 5/5

Top song: Run, Run, Run (2018)

2am Orchestra [unedited] Music Review

Photo taken by Joel (Instagram)
Photo taken by Joel (Instagram)

To people like myself, doing what you love keeps you sane and happy. You need to do this sh*t so that life doesn’t feel so… Useless. That’s why they call it “a callingprobably. That’s why David J. Kelley has been doing what he loves since 2001 and probably even sooner than that. You can’t really hate those people, you got to admire them. Doing something you love and then sharing it with anyone who will listen is like smiling at a homeless person, it’s the right thing to do.

David J. Kelley has always been enthusiastic about music. He refers to the thrill of making music for the first time as getting that “triple buzz”. “The first buzz is hearing something magical that you love (like ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit‘). The second is not just playing it from your tape deck (dating myself here), but playing it yourself on the guitar. The third buzz is, ‘whoa, I can create my own stuff.'” But even before making music, it has always been intrigued about creating his stuff.

His songwriting has always been inspired by the pressures of existential dread. “Haha. But yeah actually. I think that need, that pressure, is the biggest influence and also the fuel.” In other words, he wants his songs to have the biggest impact on his listeners and/or his imagination as if his life depended on that impact. This is one of many specific influences he has behind his music.

His fan base is made up of mostly his friends and family from New Zealand he says. Although, he does very much appreciate all of his loyal followers who have been listening to his music from the beginning, he released his first self-titled album in 2001.

“Plenty of what I write is just me dealing with stuff, cathartically barfing out the sickness of being inadequate, mortal, abandoned, self-loathing, questioning, whatever. There are thoughts and feelings too big for my brain and body and so I have to magic up a place in the world to hold them. I’m grateful to have music play that role.”

– David J. Kelley (3/19/2020)

To begin with my opinion on 2am Orchestra’s music, does anyone else think of Thom Yorke (Radiohead) when listening to most of the Trading Graves?… Well hopefully now you do if you don’t! That’s basically all I could think of when listening to that album. That and how hard it is to think of any other musician who sounded like Thom. This is a huge compliment from me because I literally was and still kinda am obsessed with that man, he was beyond his time and I really love his songwriting as well. That being said, I admire David’s existential dread drive behind his music, it kind of reminds me of myself at times.

David has moved around wide and far by the way. “For a time I toured state fairs in a trash can drummer band. That was a bit random I guess. I can remember this gig in Kentucky where this one vendor gave us free food, but it was the same thing every day: fried green tomatoes and fried chicken burgers. I was so broke I ate it 9 days straight: Actually, I wasn’t broke so much as cheap – beer was the priority!  My move from Los Angeles to Auckland was pretty spontaneous. I had a friend (Tim Bern, who played bass in the band from 2009 -2010) from New Zealand that was heading home and extended an invitation for me to follow him over. At that time I was burning out in LA pretty hard so it was a lovely change of pace. Figured I’d spend a few months bumming around New Zealand, then head home. 10 years later and here I am still in New Zealand” David says. ***Notice how all the links are from Google Earth, hope it shows how vast those locations are from each other!*** 

“When I was younger I went to China for a year. Played some regular gigs in Nanjing. Back then, being a white guy playing recognizable western tunes (cover songs) made me a sort of local celebrity. What a trip man – play “Hotel California” you’ll have a bar full of best friends. I took some requests for songs I didn’t even know the correct words to – no one noticed.”


At the moment, David is working on an untitled song about how people can go an entire lifetime being strangers to themselves. He says he’s very excited about that release. He isn’t sure what kind of direction he wants to take with his music in the future however. “I guess I want to go in the direction I’ve always gone: with the freedom to do what I want and change it up as I go,” he tells me. 

He is exploring the idea of releasing more songs more often, and is considering releasing more singles like he did last year. “Also, if I can get the boys together I’ll try to put out another one of these casual video performances that we do soon. Those always make for a fun day” David says. I’ll keep everyone posted when I hear of future tracks, which hopefully won’t be long!!!

I would like to thank David J. Kelley for providing me with his answers for 2am Orchestra earlier this month and staying in touch since then. You can follow 2am on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter; and listen to his music on Youtube, Spotify, and Apple Music. You can follow this blog on Facebook (@uneditedmb) and Instagram (@unedited_music_blog); and listen to past musicians that have been reviewed on Spotify. Have a great week, and please #staythefuckhome and don’t be stupid!

Trading Graves by 2am Orchestra (2020)
Trading Graves by 2am Orchestra (2020)

Overall: 4.7/5

Trading Graves: 5/5

Working to Divide: 4.5/5

Impermanence: 4/5

2am Orchestra: 4.5/5

Top Song: Feeling of Home (2020)

Conner Cherland [unedited] Music Review


Conner Cherland taken by Court Jones Photography [IG: @courtjones_] (2018)

During a time we all are forced to #staythefuckhome (pardon my French), we all can now not only breathe… But also listen. Listen to more than what the radio has overplaying every hour… Half hour… Or say, every minute. In times like these, I enjoy listening to singer/songwriters like Conner Cherland. I also love watching Instagram, Facebook, and all the social media live concerts. If you haven’t checked out any band’s live stream, I highly encourage you to be guess what……. (It’s free ;D)!

Conner discovered his love for music and making music in the most unique way, “I’ve always wanted to write songs since I was a little kid. My mom would make up little jingles about not standing in front of the microwave when I was young,” he says. Music is magical like that, but I don’t know why his mom didn’t like his young son stand in front of the microwave… He now finds things like his personal experiences, feelings, witnessing events influence his songs although those influences affect later songs. The majority of his fan base consists of mainly middle aged people and young children, “I think the music I’ve recorded sounds very pretty, so it appeals to those groups.”

“This album is about John Still, a fictional character who has the ability to see into the future. When he realizes he can’t have the woman he loves, he makes a potion out of pheromones to make her fall in love with him. The first song takes place once the potion starts to wear off.”

– Conner Cherland (7/30/2018)

I found Conner on Instagram, where he posts mainly cover songs and his favorite cover was of Work Song by Hozier. I find that to be interesting cause Conner kind of reminds me of Hozier, especially some of the songs off of The Choices of John Still like Letters from Emily. I actually find that album to be a solid piece of work, but surprisingly that album is not the most listened to! Toad Boy which is his most recent release has stacked up songs like Let My Body Be closing in on 30k streams and other songs! Like I said, I absolutely love singer/songwriter music during times of isolation, it’s just something about a musician and their genuine music about nothing but life itself is so cool. It’s almost like they’re playing the song for you and the people who will listen, kind of reminds me of my time in the UK and Ireland. If you haven’t been there well let’s just say musicians are everywhere on the streets of Dublin and other cities, I highly encourage people like me who love music to go travel there after all this COVID stuff goes away! Oh my thoughts on Conner… He’s a great musician whose music brings back the memories I mentioned previously, that’s really all… I have nothing bad to say about him cause he’s too good for me to say anything bad.

“I want people to reconcile with the parts of themselves they find less attractive. Airing out our laundry (clean and dirty) through art is a great way to be known, and to work through difficult subjects.”

-Conner Cherland

I don’t know exactly what Conner has in store for the future because this interview is now almost 2 years ago, but I do know that he wants to collaborate with more musicians! He’s also been continuing to do 3-5 gigs per week and is always working on more songs everyday. He was also live on Facebook the other day, and I’ll try to catch him next time he goes live again so watch out for that shoutout in the future! He admits that “it gets tiring playing so often, but it also sharpens me as a performer.”

I would like to thank Conner for being patient as I was originally going to publish this article a very long time ago (meaning like 2018). But of course, I procrastinated waiting for the right moment. You can follow Conner on Instagram and Facebook. You can also listen to him on Spotify. You can follow Unedited on Facebook (@uneditedmb) and Instagram (@unedited_music_blog). You can also listen to other music reviewed by me on my Spotify playlist. Have a wonderful week, and stay safe and healthy! Remember to #staythefuckhome if you don’t have to work or anything important!


Letters from Emily feat. The Rare Occasions by Conner Cherland (2018)

Overall: 4.5/5

Toad Boy!: 5/5

The Choices of John Still: 5/5

Tell Tales: 4/5

Top Song: Letters from Emily (2018)

Moana A. [unedited] Music Review

Moana Pionertown (Photo Taken by Sarah Lleon)
Moana Pionertown ~ (Photo Taken by Sarah Lleon)

I understand why Rita Ora says she doesn’t “wanna hear sad songs“. I get it, your in love… But what exactly is so bad about sad songs? Sad songs make us look at our happy lives and help us find that perfect medium. I bet there are plenty happily married songwriters who write depressing music, and guess what… They’re probably as happy as people who write more uplifting songs are! That’s why I loved Moana’s version of Kelly Clarkson‘s Since U Been Gone. Kelly’s version reflected “an empowering message of finding the best out of a potentially tough situation”. But Moana twisted that message into a darker and more cynical version. She says, “it sounds more like pretending to be okay, and trying to deal with strong feelings, while still showing vulnerability.” In my opinion, Moana’s version represents an equally powerful and relatable struggle. So I ask again, what is so bad about sad songs

Like most musicians I have reviewed, Moana says music and song writing has always been a part of her life. For a long time she would keep her songs locked away just like a diary, because they would be just for herself. When she was a teenager her piano teacher suggested to her dad that she should go to Berklee School of Music for college because he thought she would thrive in that setting.

“I did and he was right,” she says.

Growing up in the Caribbean, Moana was exposed to all sort of styles of music and she took a little bit of each with her. Such as co-writing, “I love how the sum is greater than the whole when working with other people, because we can enhance each others’ ideas to new levels,” she says.

Her fan base doesn’t really know what to expect from her, because they don’t know exactly what kind of crowd she is looking to attract. However, they are very supportive of her nonetheless. “When I had a crowd-funding campaign in 2013, I felt humbled by all the help I received from so many people!”

“Growing up in the Caribbean, I heard ALL sorts of different styles of music, and took a little bit of each with me. One of my favorite things is mixing genres. When I’m going through rough times, songs just pour out of me, and it’s always been easier for me to write sad songs.”

-Moana A. (3/14/2020)

I choose to not review Moana’s 2013 album called Dotted since it was entirely different beast compared to her latest releases, so I will disregard that album and allow other people to give their own opinion.

“Wild Card is about being confident and unpredictable, without needing to fit the mold,” Moana remarks about her first single release of 2020.  This song is so powerful and reflective of what she is as a musician. Moana, like previously mentioned, has released a lot of different songs… So she definitely is unpredictable. But the vocals in this song represent how confident she is in what she makes.

Moana’s version of Since U Been Gone continues her pursuit into a newer sound, a sound that she might just continue to produce consistently.

I really like these two productions, and I am very intrigued to hear where she goes from here. I want her to continue to put out music she feels confident and vulnerable in, but I also want her to push herself and her genres. I would love to see her explore sounds that are unlike any other. It would be nice to hear something different just like what she did with Kelly Clarkson’s song.

“I want to write orchestral pop with film composers; acoustic, stripped down song; rock songs, pop songs, Caribbean songs. All the songs! The one consistent thing will be that I will be releasing new stuff consistently from now on.”

-Moana A.

Now I want everyone to take that introduction sh*tting on happy songs, and just forget what I said. Cause guess who has never written a happy song… Moana… And guess who wants to produce a happy love song…

“I started writing words. Then a melody came. I was afraid to show him, but when I did we immediately came up with a guitar part that I LOVE, and it became something so beautiful that now I’m scared of even finishing, for fear of somehow not making it perfect. I feel like this will be a very important song and I want to give it the best I have. We’re recording it this month.”

That’s right… Moana is going to be recording a happy love song this month… Talk about unpredictable…

*insert GIF here*

So I guess she will producing a happy love song in the future, but she will be releasing a lot more than that. “I want to write orchestral pop with film composers; acoustic, stripped down song; rock songs, pop songs, Caribbean songs. All the songs!”

One thing is for sure though, she will be aiming to release a new track for each month… Doesn’t that sound familiar… *cough cough Only Sun‘s 2018 tracks cough cough*…

So with that said, everyone and myself should be looking forward to another track from Moana this month… Don’t be shocked if it’s a happy song…

I would like to thank Moana for her continued communication, I was really excited to review her because she seems like a very kind and passionate person about her music. You can listen to her music on Spotify, YouTube, Apple Music, and SoundCloud. You can follow her on her social medias; Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. Also, feel free to join Moana’s mailing list! You can follow Unedited on Instagram (@unedited_music_blog) and Facebook (@uneditedmb). You can also listen to other songs that have been reviewed on Unedited through both Spotify playlists (This Is Unedited (newest playlist in celebration of our 3rd year!) and UMB’s Favorites). I hope everyone stays COVID-19 free and healthy, and I hope all college boys and girls enjoy their extended spring break!

Since U Been Gone by Moana A. (2020) ~ Photo taken by Ananda Dhar James

Overall: 5/5

Since U Been Gone: 5/5

Wild Card: 5/5

Top Song: Since U Been Gone (2020)

Nicole & Scotty [unedited] Music Review


Nicole & Scotty debut their music through YouTube in 2013, that same year they were a supporting act for Lisa Marie Presley (Elvis’s daughter). “It was such an honor to support (her) on tour. We’ve both been fans of Lisa’s since I was maybe 6 years old, and she was a huge reason behind me getting inspired to write my own songs. Lisa is such a genuine and kind person. The whole experience was so surreal” Nicole said.

 Brother and sister duo Nicole and Scotty started their musical career at young ages. Scotty started to learn and play the guitar at 10, and Nicole started to write and sing at 5. “When Scotty started composing original instrumentals, we kind of just had a light bulb moment like ‘Oh! We should combine our love of music and writing to create our own songs!’ So we wrote the first song we ever wrote together when we were 11 and 15″ Nicole tells me.

“(Our fan base) started calling themselves ‘fellow travelers’ thanks to a lyric from our first EP, and we honestly love them like family. Social media is amazing. It makes it so easy for our supporters to keep up with us, and we love to keep up with them as well.”

-Nicole & Scotty (4.15.2019)

I really enjoy N&S’s sound, and my favorite song has to be Can Be Beautiful. “Can Be Beautiful is about that fragile feeling of love in bloom. Like you know something is happening and you’re hesitant to fall, but you have to acknowledge that letting go of the fear of the unknown and allowing yourself to open up to someone special can be a beautiful thing,” Nicole tells me. Nicole’s songwriting and lovely voice shines through in this track, it’s a perfect mix of acoustic, electronic chill, and pop. I am intrigued to hear more of these kind of songs by the two.

“We wrote this song in January called ’Sweet N’ Sour’ that kinda just fell into our laps. We performed it for the first time on tour in Nashville that same month and ever since we posted a live clip of it on Instagram, people have been asking when we’re planning on dropping it.”

-Nicole & Scotty

The siblings are planning to release more music throughout the course of 2019, and probably even a 2 part EP which they’ve been working ever since they released #Queen in October 2018. They also are planning to pursue “touring around the world, releasing records that people can relate or dance to, and just making a positive impact through the messages we want to share.Rather it be writing Americana and acoustic songs, or it be pop music (which their last release fell under) they tell me the kind of music that will be released will depend on “what genre gets us super pumped up to write“.

I would sincerely like to thank both Nicole and Scotty for the continued communication they’ve had with me recently. If you like to follow them, you can do that by following or liking them on Facebook and Instagram. Also, stay tuned to our Facebook (@uneditedmb) and Instagram (@unedited_music_blog) pages to be updated with their future progress as well! Have a great Memorial Day and week!!!

#Queen (2018) by Nicole & Scotty

Overall: 4.8/5

Can Be Beautiful: 5/5

#Queen: 4.7/5

Top Song: Can Be Beautiful (2018)