Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Keep Telling Myself It's Alright
Genres: Alternative Rock, Pop, Rock, Hard Rock & Metal
"The Stone" debut single by ASHES dIVIDE achieves rock radio's rarest double play, as it is named Most-Added at the Active Rock and Modern Rock formats for the second week in a row - and debuts inside the Top 40 at both fo... more »
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"The Stone" debut single by ASHES dIVIDE achieves rock radio's rarest double play, as it is named Most-Added at the Active Rock and Modern Rock formats for the second week in a row - and debuts inside the Top 40 at both formats: #24-bullet on the Active Rock side and #25-bullet at Modern Rock. "The Stone" is the first single from Keep Telling Myself It's Alright, the first album from ASHES dIVIDE, which arrives in stores April 8th on Island Records, a division of Island Def Jam Music Group. ASHES dIVIDE is the new band formed by lead guitarist, singer and songwriter Billy Howerdel - founder/producer of multi-platinum group A Perfect Circle, the band he led with Tool frontman Maynard Keenan through two platinum and one gold record. Keep Telling Myself It's Alright, Howerdel's long-awaited first solo project, has been the subject of countless blogs and chatter at his website for a year and a half. In last week's Entertainment Weekly, "Your Next Obsession" polled film and television music supervisors on upcoming album picks, and Dana Sand (of Steve Carell's Dan In Real Life) commended ASHES dIVIDE: "So very dreamy rock with a '90s feel." Howerdel produced and engineered the new album sessions in Los Angeles, playing guitar, bass, and keyboard parts. Longtime collaborator Danny Lohner (APC, Nine Inch Nails) helped out with the recording process, while drummer Josh Freese (APC), and Keenan's son Devo appear on the album. Other contributors include Johnette Napolitano (Concrete Blonde), Matt Skiba (Alkaline Trio), and Paz Lenchantin. Mixing took place in London by innovative Brit producer Alan Moulder, remotely monitored by Howerdel back in L.A. Moulder is known for his work with Nine Inch Nails, Depeche Mode, My Bloody Valentine, and fellow Island band the Killers' two albums. New Jersey-born Billy Howerdel is a self taught musician who started out doing theatrical stage lighting. He took to the road as a guitar technician for many bands, among them David Bowie, Guns N' Roses, Nine Inch Nails, Smashing Pumpkins, and Tool. Howerdel and Keenan became friends years earlier while crossing paths on tour. But it was not until the recording sessions for Tool's 1996 album Ænima that the two planted the seeds which would become A Perfect Circle circa 1999. APC released three groundbreaking and critically acclaimed albums on Virgin Records: their RIAA platinum debut, Mer de Noms (May 2000) which entered at #4 Soundscan with 188,000 copies and placed three songs on the Modern Rock and Mainstream Rock charts ("3 Libras," "Judith," and "The Hollow"); the platinum Thirteenth Step (September 2003) which debuted at #2 Sound¬scan on 231,000 first week sales (with the #1 Rock track and video "Weak and Powerless," followed by "The Outsider" and "Blue"); and the RIAA gold eMOTIVe (November 2004), an overtly political album released on Presidential election day, primarily cover versions of political material including John Lennon's "Imagine," Led Zeppelin's "When the Levee Breaks," Marvin Gaye's "What's Going On," Black Flag's "Gimmie Gimmie Gimmie," and more. Two weeks later, the CD + DVD package aMOTION was released, a collection of all their video clips on one disc, and nine remixes of songs on the other disc.
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A fresh new start for Billy Howerdel - 3.5 Stars
Greg | Houston, TX | 05/08/2008
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I was/am a huge fan of A Perfect Circle. I think they released some of the most inspired music of the decade, and Billy Howerdel's song-writing and guitar styles were right up my alley. Needless to say, I was a little bummed when the group disbanded, but I kept my eye on the members' other projects.
I learned of Ashes Divide a couple months before this album came out, and I couldn't wait to hear what new music Mr. Howerdel had written. The only thing that concerned me was the fact that he would also be handling singing duties, and I hadn't been to impressed by his singing in the past. But in all fairness, how can you compare anyone to Maynard James Keenan? Any way, my prediction was that this album would be good, just not as good as A Perfect Circle. My prediction was accurate. Thankfully, Billy's singing has improved significantly, but as I said before, Maynard's shoes are much too big to fill. Billy actually sings similar to Maynard in some ways, but at the same time it's obvious that he's not mimicing him. Musically, the songs don't seem as diverse as APC's, perhaps because APC was a group effort and Ashes Divide is more of a solo thing. All the songs have the same gothic atmosphere to them, most similar to APC songs like "Blue" and "Orestes." There's a lot of piano meshed with the guitar, which provided a fresh feel to the album. More than anything, I hear a lot of influence from The Cure on this album.
This album is about what I expected, and I've been enjoying it. It's impressive for Billy's solo debut, and I see this project as having a lot of potential, because there's still room for improvement. But for die-hard fans of A Perfect Circle, this album is a must!"
Great effort from a very talented muisian!
J. Jaffery | New Jersey | 07/07/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I first heard this band just before going to an STP show that they were opening up for. When I first heard the CD prior to the show, I wasn't very impressed, dismissing them as an acceptable opening band.
After hearing them live, and listening to the CD a few more times, this album really grew on me. The songs really have some depth, both musically & lyrically, and each time I listen to them they just get better.
Anyone dismissing Billy Howerdel's first solo effort as weak follow-up to A Perfect Circle, or saying that it's not as edgy as that effort clearly hasn't listened to this album. Billy has done a great job on vocals within the context of the music, and it's unfair to dismiss his vocal abilities compared to Maynard's (VERY FEW people could compare to that in this genre of music). Take this for what it is without comparing it to anything else: a great rock album with some real substance.
I can't wait till ASHES dIVIDE starts working on their next one!"
Mature and brilliant
Itzik Hagoel | Israel | 05/08/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Comparisons to APC aside, this is an excellent album. You can feel that a lot of thought, effort and talent were put into these songs (melodies, lyrics and prodution). It's one of those albums that grows on you and reminds you what music is all about. A rare thing nowadays.