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Mace & Crown | February 21, 2018

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Worth Noting: The Monarch Music Review

Adam Flores | Editor-in-Chief

Trey Songz Hits With New Album

Trey Songz
Tremaine The Album

The singer-songwriter, actor and Petersburg, Virginia native releases his highly polished, seventh studio album showcasing seductive crooning and masterful use of musical control. The once introverted, now turned R&B, hip-hop and soul extrovert reaches out once again on a near hour-long journey with melancholic, conflicting introspection giving us clues into his personal narrative.

Courtesy Atlantic Recording Corporation

Courtesy Atlantic Recording Corporation

As a child, Tremaine Aldon Neverson didn’t have a musical dream. Though others around him realized his talent and sound, it wasn’t until age 14 that he discovered his own musical prowess.

“Singing wasn’t a reality for me, until other people started noticing I sounded good.”

At age 32 and more than 14 million albums sold, that reality for Trey Songz–raised as a military brat by his mother and stepfather–is deeply engrained with fans and the music world. “Tremaine The Album” is chock-full of signature beats, grooves and lyrical connotations that reflect the artist’s own trials and perhaps, coming-of-age sensibilities.

Prior to dropping “Tremaine” back on March 24, releasing tracks such as “Nobody Else But You,” “Animal” and “Playboy” primed listeners for the 15-song continuation story since July 2014’s Billboard 200 No. 1 debut, “Trigga.” The near three-year break sees Songz continue his musical trek with other new cuts such as “She Lovin It” and “Come Over.”

“Animal” lays the groundwork for his seductive romp as he asserts, “Gonna get to, get to your forbidden fruit / Turn the bed into a jungle.”

“Come Over” exemplifies his bedroom swagger as he appeals, “Come over / Even though we fell apart, don’t you even start, girl you still got my heart.”

Concise and clever lyrical motion drive the themes of “Tremaine.” Backed by infectious beats and perfectly balanced musical accompaniments, fans should be pleased by the emotionally charged permeating sonic textures and mood the new album instills.

Fellow Virginian and frequent collaborator MIKExANGEL makes a guest appearance on the lone track, “Games We Play.”

At the time of printing, Drake’s “More Life” prepares to continue holding the No. 1 spot for a second week on the Billboard 200 chart. “Tremaine The Album” looks to be the only contender to take over the top spot.

Stream the album on Spotify here.

Notable Mentions:

Courtesy Reprise Records

Courtesy Reprise Records

Emperor of Sand

Atlanta progressive metal quartet Mastodon unleash a seventh epic possessing their signature cross-breeding of rock genre soundscapes and influences.

The serial tracks culminate the narrative of a desert wanderer in possession of his death sentence. The inspiration came from the band’s off-stage story of family members’ diagnosed with cancer. Themes of survival and death pervade the new album’s conceptual voice.

Mastadon will embark on a U.S. tour from April into May with supporting acts Eagles of Death Metal and Russian Circles.

Worth Noting:
“Show Yourself”
“Sultan’s Curse”

Stream the album on Spotify here.

Courtesy Wheelhouse Records

Courtesy Wheelhouse Records

Trace Adkins
Something’s Going On

It’s been four years since the country music superstar released his last studio project, “Love Will.”

There’s a lot going on with Adkins’ newest release. Produced by Mickey Jack Cones (Joe Nichols, Dustin Lynch), “Something’s Going On” contains songs written by some of Nashville’s finest songwriters, including Shane McAnally, Casey Beathard, Tyler Farr and Craig Campbell.

Tour support began in February and will continue through August. With each ticket purchased, Trace is giving away a copy of “Something’s Going On.”

Worth Noting:
“Watered Down”
“Something’s Going On”
“Still a Soldier”

Stream the album on Spotify here.

Courtesy MercyMe

Courtesy MercyMe


Contemporary Christian music veterans MercyMe present their ninth studio release. The concept of “Lifer” asks what’s it like to live as followers of Christ that are committed for life?

Frontman Bart Millard revealed “Even If” is a song reflecting the trials of chronic illness within his diabetic, 15-year-old son, Sam.

“This song is a declaration to God that even if He went silent and never said another word, He’s still worthy to be praised, and He’s our greatest hope in the midst of the trial.”

Worth Noting:
“Even If”
“We Win”
“Hello Beautiful”

Stream the album on Spotify here.

Courtesy Jackie Evancho

Courtesy Jackie Evancho

Jackie Evancho
Two Hearts

In 2010 at age 10, her musical gift of voice and song on “America’s Got Talent” secured her a second place finish in the show’s fifth season.

Her new rendering, “Two Hearts,” is a two-disc offering: the first consists of 10 classical crossover selections and the second, a 5-track pop EP exploring new musical territory alongside today’s pop music vocal divas.

“I’m not going to get rid of my classical voice, because that’s my roots, that’s what I love the most.”

Worth Noting:
“How Great Thou Art”
“The Way We Were”
“The Haunting”

Stream the album on Spotify here.

Courtesy Mute Artists Ltd

Courtesy Mute Artists Ltd

Silver Eye

The English electronic music duo have released their seventh studio album continuing their aesthetic of Alison Goldfrapp’s soft, breathy soprano voice and Will Gregory’s multi-layered synthesiser/string arrangements.

The new record encompasses a direct approach, lyrically while continuing to assume new identities. Heavy use of synthesizers in their musical sound resembles the synthesis of different genres infused from track to track.

Identity crisis? Quite the contrary. “Silver Eye” signifies a wide palate of flavors that keeps the vibe of unpredictability comfortable and in control.

Worth Noting:
“Moon in Your Mouth”

Stream the album on Spotify here.