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Monday, June 19, 2017

Diaura Universe Review

Popular Japanese Visual Kei band, Diaura, came out with a new song in February, called Universe.  Diaura has made a name for themselves among the visual kei music scene in Japan with songs such as Trigger, Lily, and their biggest hit, Lost November.  Many people have considered Diaura one of the most popular bands of the visual kei music scene in Japan.  With all that, lets see how good Universe is,

Musically, Diaura continues with the heavy melodic metal sound that the band is known for.  The first thing I would like to recognize is the melodic guitar work of Kei.  Kei does great melodic guitar soloing in this song that is superb and adds a good emotional feel to the song.  He also busts out some good heavy riffs in the songs verse that really adds to the energy.  It seems to me that with each new release for Diaura, Kei keeps on getting better as a guitar player and in this song he demonstrates it very well. Yo-ka does great vocal work in this song as usual.  His deep, melodic voice is very unique and really plays a huge part in what make this band unique and great.  

Lyrically, the band continues their deep emotional message of sticking together through hard times.  The band does a great job with these lyrics and communicates the message very well.  However, this is a message the band does a lot and as a result it feels a little generic and not unique anymore.  To be clear, the lyrics are not bad, but they are safe, the band didn't really venture into new territory with this song, lyrically.  

While the song isn't new lyrically, the music is great.  The band continues to progress musically while staying true to their core sound.  Kei seems to be getting better at his instrument and Yo-ka continues to display amazing vocal talent.  This is a song you should check out if you are a fan of Diaura and visual kei.  If you are a metal fan looking for some new music, this song is defiantly something you should check out.  With great music that show the bands progression I give Universe a 4 out of 5.  

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Top 5 War Movie Soundtracks

I love to watch a good war movie.  When it is done right, war movies are some of the most emotional and intense movie experiences ever.  War movies also have some of the best movie soundtracks I have ever heard.  Typically containing a great orchestra composition and arrangement that gives each movie soundtrack it's unique sound.  Here are the top 5 war movie soundtracks.

5.  The Alamo (1960)

This movie alone was really great and I highly recommend it to anybody.  John Wayne did a great job directing the movie and acting as the legendary Davy Crockett.  However, the soundtrack composed and arranged by Dimitri Tiomkin is also very amazing.  He does a great job of not just making great music, but really capturing the atmosphere and the time period the movie takes place in.  When you listen to it you feel like your in Texas in the early 1800's when it was still a Mexican territory.  He also does a great job of matching each song to the scene it was being used for.  If it was a battle scene the music is fast pace and intense.  If it is a soft emotional scene, the music was toned down perfectly to match it.  With a soundtrack that captures each scene of the movie it is attached to, it is no wonder that this would be one of the top movie soundtracks of 1960. This soundtrack is available on ITunes and you can also get a physical copy on Amazon or Ebay if you choose. Get it how you wish but buy it and listen to it.

4.  Braveheart

Braveheart is without a doubt one of the most legendary movies ever made. Mel Gibson did a great job directing and acting in it and as a result it is considered on of the best movies in history.  One of the biggest factors to the movies success is the soundtrack composed by James Horner.  James Horner does a great job of creating great music with a good Scottish feel to it.  He also creates some of the most catchy music that really helps the movie to stick to people after they are done watching.  Along with all that, Braveheart has one of the most emotional soundtracks I have every heard.  Every song you hear really connects you to the emotion in the movie and it really sticks with you.  The soundtrack is available on ITunes, and Amazon, don't think twice, get it.

3.  Glory

Glory is a great American Civil War movie that touches on  African Americans during the war.  This soundtrack is another James Horner master piece.  In this movie, Horner decided to do an orchestra and quire vocal combination that is delivered very well.  While there are not vocals in every song on the soundtrack, it really sticks out when it appears.  The best example is the Assault on Fort Wagner song.  The use of the vocals in this song really adds to the intensity of the battle taking place and it really gets you more engaged in the scene.  When you are not watching the moving, this song is still able to communicate that feeling very well and that is what makes a great movie soundtrack.  Don't overlook the orchestra though.  James Horner did a great job composing the music and each orchestra piece sounds amazing.  This soundtrack is not available on ITunes, but you can buy a physical copy on Amazon and Ebay.  Trust me, it is worth buying.

2.  The Patriot

The Patriot is great movie about the American Revolution.  This movie is another Mel Gibson master piece, great acting, and great directing from him.  This movie was fortunate to have the great John Williams compose and arrange the music on it.  John Williams did fantastic work with movies like Star Wars, Indiana Jones, and Jurassic Park.  He continues to carry that into The Patriot.  John Williams does a great job of  using great orchestra music, as he has done for most of his movies, and also making music that really captures the time period.  When you listen to some of these songs, you feel like your in the 1700's and in the Revolutionary war.  Along with all this, John Williams manages to compose music that fits each scene in the movie and really captures what scene is about.  Sadly, only the theme song is available on ITunes.  However,  you can buy a physical copy on Amazon or Ebay, and I highly recommend you do.

1.  Gettysburg

Gettysburg is one of my one of my favorite war movies.  It does a great job of telling the story of the Battle of Gettysburg during the Civil War.  I can't recommend this one enough.  Along with that is the amazing work of composer Randy Edelman.  Randy Edelman composes some of the most intense and impressive orchestra music I have heard in a war movie.  Every battle song feels intense and makes you think your in the action, while there are plenty of good soft songs that make you lay back and think.  Edelman also has some good songs that capture the time period with the use of acoustic guitar and banjo in some songs.  This soundtrack also has a good inspirational, driven feel to it.  Almost every song has an inspiration feel that makes you want to press on no matter the obstacle.  One song that comes to mind the March of Mortality song.  It makes you feel like no matter what the situation is you need to try.  This is one movie soundtrack that I like every song on and I cannot recommend it enough.  The soundtrack is available on Itunes, Amazon, and Ebay.  Do whatever it takes, but buy it, listen to it, and enjoy it.  

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Minori Chihara Kyoukai No Kanta (Beyond the Boundary) Review

Minori Chihara has made a name for herself in Japan as a famous voice actress and singer.  She has been featured in countless anime shows and has become a house hold name in Japan.  Her music career has been very successful as well.  Starting her music career in 2005, she has reached arena level fame in Japan, playing in from of thousands of people regularly.  Her music came on my radar back in 2013 with her song Kyoukai No Kanta, Beyond the Boundary in English, for the anime under the same name.  

Musically, the song is a good combination of soft rock, piano, and soft orchestra. This is a very common music formula in Jpop, and is one I wish American pop  would use more often.  The piano and guitar take turns being the lead instrument and that is very well executed.  Sometimes, when you have more then one lead instrument that is not in a songs solo section, you can have a song that sounds sloppy and all over the place.  This song does is right and as a result gives good variety, musically.  Minori has a pretty high, unique voice.  One thing I have heard people critique her for, is that some times she tries too hard to go in a vocal direction her voice can't go in.  However, in this song she sounds excellent.  Her voice sounds smooth, she hits the right notes, and delivers a very great performance.   

Lyrically, the song is a love song about longing to be with the right person and searching for that someone.  Like I said in the beginning, this song was written for the anime with with same name as the song.  These lyrics capture the mood of that anime perfectly.  The lyrics establish that this anime is about someone who is longing for that perfect relationship and trying very hard to find it.  

Musically, the song is great and well composed.  The piano and guitar taking turns with lead is well executed.  Minori's voice sounds amazing in this song and she carries it perfectly.  The lyrics serve their purpose of establishing the anime they are based on perfectly.  I give Kyoukai No Kanta a 4 out of 5.  

Monday, June 12, 2017

Fantasmic, a Disney Master Piece

Disney has done a great job through out its history of composing great music, not just for the movies, but for the live shows as well.  One of the shows that always sticks out in my mind would be Fantasmic.  While Fantasmic is certainly a visual master piece, it is visuals that are driven by the music it is part of.  Without good music, Fantasmic wouldn't be able to flow well and as a result not be appealing.  Fortunately, this an area that Disney executed very well. 

The credit for the composition and arrangement of Fantasmic's music goes to Bruce Healey.  Bruce joined Disney back in 1973, and has since written music, not just for Fantasmic, but for many areas of Disneyland and Disneyland Tokyo.  Bruce was born in St. Louis Missouri on March 11, 1950, shortly after that his family moved to Southern California where he grew up.  Growing up, he learned everything about music he could, from learning to play instruments such as keyboards and percussion, to learning composition and arrangement.  Then finally in 1973, he landed a career of being a composer for Disney.  Ever since then, he has composed music for Disney theme parks, and some sing along songs.  

Fantasmic has many stand outs, musically, that are very impressive.  One of the most noticeable ones is the Fantasmic theme song itself.  The intro is very catchy and energetic and as a result gets you hooked into the show right away.  Another great music stand out is the rock twist on the heffalumps and woozles song from Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day.  The guitar in that song is great and does a great job of creating a new take on it, while at the same time staying true to the original.  One of my personal favorites is the entire villain section.  Bruce does a great job on putting his own twists on certain songs that really makes them stand out.  The way he arranges that section is also worth noting.  Everything sounds smooth and every transition sounds spot on and not out of sync.  

Out of all the shows in Disneyland, Fantasmic is a must.  Not only is it visually impressive, but the music is some of the best that Disneyland has to offer. If you take a trip to Disneyland you have to check Fantasmic out.  Sadly, you cannot get the entire show in recorded format.  However, the theme song is available on ITunes.  You can also get the theme song by buying one of the Disney Classic Music Collections.  

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Queensryche, Operation Mindcrime, a Concept Masterpiece

When it comes to concept records, few have made the impact that Operation Mindcrime had.  Recorded by Queensryche, Operation Mindcrime tells the story of a man who gets caught up in a terrorist organization and wanting out of it.  The album got released in 1988 and has since gone on to be one of the most classic concept records in music history.  

The album kicks off with Remember Now, an mysterious intro with the main character stating he remembers what he did.  Then we get hit the the rockin instrumental intro, Anarchy X.  This is a short, but great rock intro to the rest of the album.  Then, we finally get the first vocal song on the album with Revolution Calling.  Chris DeGarmo gives a great intro guitar solo to the song which is followed by the amazing voice of Geoff Tate, as seen in the highlighted  link below.
Revolution Calling

Christ Degarmo

Geoff Tate

The album goes on with a nice flow from song to song that is amazing and very ground breaking for its time.  The transitions are smooth and never sound out of place which is very hard to pull off, but Queensryche pulled it off very effectively.  Some transitions that stick out most in my mind are when Break the Silence goes into I Don't Believe in Love and when My Empty Room goes into Eyes of a Stranger.  The transitions set up the next songs perfectly and really get you excited for them.  

The songs themselves are fantastic.  They are all well composed and every musician in the band gives it their all to make every song unique and great to listen to.  Some of my favorite song on the album include Suite Sister Mary, I Don't Believe in Love, and Eyes of a Stranger.  Suite Sister Mary has a great mysterious sound to it that I haven't heard often in metal.  I Don't Believe in Love has amazing guitar work, great bass work, and fantastic vocals.  Similar thing with Eyes of a Stranger, Chris Degarmo does great guitar work and Geoff Tate's vocals are very unique and stand out.  Check out all three songs by clicking the highlighted links below.  

With a great concept, an amazing flow, and fantastic songs, Operation Mindcrime is a must have album.  Even if you are not a huge metal fan I still highly recommend you buy this album.  You can preview this album by listening to it on Spotify, and if you like it you can get it on ITunes, Amazon, or Ebay.  I personally recommend getting a physical copy of the album.  Trust me, it is one album you will want to add to either your CD collection, or vinyl, if you can get one.  Operation Mindcrime, listen to it, love it, buy it.  

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Noisycell Lily Review

Noisycell is an indie rock band out of Japan that is slowly starting to gain more and more fame.  They have achieved some success with their song, Last Theater, featured as the ending song for the anime, Death Parade.  Since then, the band has gained a good cult size following.  Recently, the band put out a newer song, Lily.  

Musically, the song is pretty good and energetic.  While it certainly has a ballad feel to it, it is still got a good heavy energy to it.  The fast drum work and fast guitar playing really contribute to that energy, especially in the songs intro.  The verse for the most part keeps that energy going with a slight break in the pre chorus before bringing it back in the main chorus.  It is a good transition to use the pre chorus to get the listener ready for the main chorus and this band executes that very well.  Vocally, the song is very good as well.  The Woo Woo at the beginning of the song gives a very good boost to the songs energy.  The melodic vocals Ryosuke are very impressive.  While I wouldn't say he's the greatest singer I have ever heard, he does a great job carrying the song vocally and the melodic style he uses is very effective.  

Lyrically, the song is basically about a break up in a relationship, and the complex feeling of that.  The lyrics are not bad and the message is good.  However, this is a message that has been done many times in music and every person is sure to have heard it 100 times.  However, the music and vocals communicate the song's message effectively and that is very important and helps to save the song.  

Noisycell is a talented band that looks to have a bright future ahead of them.  This song displays the bands talent very well and shows they got a good chance to make it.  The music is very good and while the lyrics are nothing new, the vocals really communicate the message well and sounds great. For having great music and great vocals I give this song a 3.5 out of 5. 

Monday, June 5, 2017

2NE1 Goodbye Review

Out of all the KPop girl groups that have tried to make headway in the world, few did as well as 2NE1. Many people consider 2NE1 the second biggest girl group in KPop, with only Girls Generation surpassing them.  Sadly, to the shock of many KPop fans, 2NE1 disbanded at the end of 2016.  With Minzy leaving the group and Bom having health issues, YG Entertainment decided to end the group.  However, before they disbanded they put out one of the most deepest, real, honest songs I have ever heard, Goodbye.

Musically, this song is simple, but fantastic, the acoustic guitar sets the sad mood the song is going for perfectly.  It is not complex or tricky but for a song like this, that is fine, it still sounds good and plays a huge part in getting the songs message across. All three girls sound great in this song.  Every one carries their sections perfectly and drives the lyrical meaning to the point that you really feel the sadness they feel about disbanding. 

Lyrically, this is one of the most honest and real songs I have ever heard.  CL did a great job of writing lyrics that are communicating their hurt to the audience.  They don't hold back their feelings, and this is the kind of lyric writing I love seeing.  They don't try to be overly fancy or cool sounding, they choose to be real, and that is what I admire.  

I am not the biggest 2NE1 fan, but I have to admit that they did a fantastic farewell song here.  The message is communicated clearly, the melody is great, and the simple acoustic guitar creates a very great song that makes even someone like me, who is not a huge fan of 2NE1, feel bad that they are disbanding.  When you have a song that does that you have done something right.  I wish all the members of 2NE1 the best and hope they are all very successful in their future careers.  For having not just a good sounding song, but a very honest song, I give Goodbye a 5 out of 5.  

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Shinedown Diamond Eyes (Boom-Lay Boom) Review

Shinedown was one of my favorite bands for a long time growing up.  The heavy guitar riffs and Brent Smiths voice is amazing and brings a slight southern feel to the bands hard rock driven music.  Sound of Madness is still one of my favorite albums of all time. It is actually one of the few albums I own that I like every single song on.  Shinedown has managed to take what made Sound of Madness great and applied it to their follow up single, Diamond Eyes.

Musically, Diamond Eyes is one of Shinedown's best songs.  The slow build up to the song is great and really sets up for the very energetic heavy intro.  The guitar riff in the intro is one of the big things that give the intro it heavy feel.  It is simple but very effective.  The pre chorus is one of the best parts of the songs.   Zach Myers does a great job busting out the boom lay boom phrase and it really adds to the high, heavy energy the song is going for.  Brent Smith sounds very good as usual.  His voice really carries the lyrics well and that slight southern sound he brings is one of the things that makes Shinedown unique.

Lyrically, this song accomplish's what it is supposed to.  For those who don't know, Shinedown wrote Diamond Eyes for The Expendables movie.  It is a intense action movie and the lyrics capture that mood and tone perfectly.  With phrases like "fist fist philosophy", and "we watch with wounded eyes" you really get a good sense that this is a song about combat and being in the thick of it.  Shinedown could not have done a better job conveying the Expendables movie lyrically then they did in Diamond Eyes.

Diamond Eyes is a great song with high energy and great lyrics to match the movie it is representing.  From the guitar riffs, to the vocals, this song does a great job representing the Expendables, and it is a great hard rock and metal song you need to get.  If you are a hard rock and metal fan this is one song that you should listen to.  I give Diamond Eyes a 4.5 out of 5.  

Thursday, May 25, 2017

David Kaylor, Piano Master of YouTube

David Kaylor is a musician who has recently gained some fame on YouTube for his piano cover of the LA LA LAND soundtrack.  The video has gained over a million views on YouTube and rightfully so, the man is an excellent musician. However, while it may be his most popular video, it is not his only video.  David has done many piano melodies and covers, all of which are excellent and very well done.  

One of my favorite videos on his YouTube channel is his piano melody of the Star Wars Soundtrack.  As a Star Wars fan and John Williams fan, I have to say that David does true justice to this amazing soundtrack justice.  His piano twist is very well executed and brings a unique take to it, musically.  While his LA LA LAND is the most popular, I still highly recommend checking out his Star Wars cover.

Check out the videos of David's performance shown below.  If you like the videos,  you can subscribe to his YouTube channel, or buy his music on ITunes.  If you would like to learn how to play his piano melodies, David has the sheet music for people to learn from as well in the description of his videos.  Check out his music, listen to it, enjoy it.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Top 5 Dynasty Warriors Series Soundtrack Songs

There are not too many video game soundtracks out there like the Dynasty Warriors series.  While Koei Tecmo is known for throwing together a rock and orchestra combo in their video games, none are done as well done as Dynasty Warriors.  With great energy and melody, Dynasty Warriors makes for one of the best video games soundtrack Koei Tecmo has to offer.  Here is the top 5 soundtrack songs from the Dynasty Warriors Series.

5.  Avenging Battle

Avenging Battle from Dynasty Warriors 4 is  a great battle sounding song with great guitar and a some hints of Japanese music.  Right off the back you get some great dual guitar soloing that really drives the energy and creates a tense feel.  It is followed up by a soft Japanese flute solo, that tones the song down a little bit. Then they end the song with a good melodic guitar solo.  The only flaw in the song is that the final guitar solo is a little repetitive, but it is still a good song and certainly worth listening to.

4.  The Final Battle
The Final Battle from Dynasty Warriors 7 may be one of the longest songs in the the Dynasty Warriors series but it is still very good.  The melodic dual guitar solos are good, and the small bits of power metal sounding guitar is certainly worth noting.  The orchestra in this song is pretty good as well, it may be subtle, but it does add a tension building feel that is effective.  My favorite part of this song is the guitar solo in the middle of it.  It is not tricky, or shredding like, but it has a great melodic sound that goes well with the rest of the music and in its simplicity makes the song better.

3.  Teary Edge
 Teary Edge from Dynasty Warriors 7 Extreme Legends is a little bit different then the other songs on this list so far.  Where as the other songs have been mainly guitar driven, this song is actually piano driven.  While the guitar solos are certainly present in this song, they don't make up the main portion of it.  Overall, the melodic piano leads this song with the orchestra joining it in the chorus.  The piano may be a little repetitive, but the melodic feel it brings is a different take on the series and a welcomed one.

2. Vanish
Vanish from Dynasty Warriors 8 Extreme Legends is one of the best examples of orchestra and rock working together I have ever heard.  The orchestra builds up that battle feel and the melodic guitar solos in this song actually give a good emotional feel that makes the song feel more personal.  When you play a level in the game while hearing this song you really start to get a drive and determination to win the level, which is not easy to convey with music in video games.  

1.  A Thousand Suns
A Thousand Suns from Dynasty Warriors 8 is a great instrumental rock song.  The guitar solos are some of my favorite in the Dynasty Warrior series.  the dual solo's are very energetic and the melodic nature of the solos is amazing.  The part where the orchestra and guitar are playing back to back is awesome and builds into a great moment where both intertwined musically.  Then the guitar build up towards the end of the song is great way to lead to the final section. With great guitar and very energetic rock music, this is one of the best songs in the Dynasty Warriors series.    

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Top 5 Video Game Soundtracks

Although people don't always think about music in video games, it actually plays a very important roll.  Music in a video sets the tone and helps boost someones experience when playing the game.  Just like when you hear music in a movie, music in video games helps create that memorable experience.  With that, here at the top 5 video game soundtracks

5.  Mass Effect 2
Mass Effect 2 may go down in history as one of the best video games of all time even with all the controversy that it's sequel games would make.  Along with the great game play and fantastic story, it also had one of the most memorable soundtracks of all time.  The soundtrack in this game is good combination of a good space scifi and orchestra music.  The scifi music give a good feel of exploration while in space, towns, or exploring a room.  The Orchestra really captures the intensity of the combat you get thrown into.  With such a great combo, this makes a good soundtrack.

4.  Halo Combat Evolved

While Halo may also be a scifi game as well, it's soundtrack is more orchestra and vocal driven then Mass Effect.  When you listen to songs like Truth and Reconciliation, you get feel for what this soundtrack is about.  You start with the mysterious sounding vocals, followed by battle driven orchestra, then comes in with some mysterious sounding space music, and ending with the classic vocals.  Those elements make up this soundtrack and they all blend in well with every level and it really enhances all the combat and mystery you as the player experience in this game. A great piece of orchestra music not to pass up.

3.   Jet Force Gemini

Jet Force Gemini has one of the most diverse soundtracks I have ever heard in video games.  The orchestra driven music is different depending on which level you are on.  Some levels give you a straight up battle feel, some make you want to explore the level, and some make you scared and cautious.  What makes this soundtrack great is not just the music, but how well each song fits the level it is attached to.  The music on every level is perfect and sounds amazing and really makes this sound track unique.

2.  Super Mario 64

Super Mario 64 is good fun music soundtrack, perfect for this game.  It is not orchestra driven like most of the game soundtracks on this list but it doesn't need to be.  They did a good job creating fun sounding music to fit a game more comical game like this one.  There is one sooth sounding song in this game and that is the Water Theme Music.  It has an overall more relaxing feel to it compared to the rest of the music in the game.  However, it still fits its level perfectly and is fun to listen to.  

1.  The Legend of Zelda Ocarina Of Time

The Legend of Zelda Ocarina of Time is without a doubt one of my video game soundtracks. While this soundtrack once again fits perfectly with the areas it's attached to, it is also has some great unique music.  With so many classic songs ranging from Song of Storms, The Hyrule Theme, and the Gerudo Valley, you got one of the most memorable soundtracks of all time.  Even some of the less famous songs such as The Ice Cavern, The Spirit Temple, and Ganodorf's Battle Theme, are still very well composed and I enjoy listening to them.  I can't recommend looking into this soundtrack enough and if you want to see live performances, every year Nintendo does a Legend of Zelda Symphony world tour that consists of many songs from this specific game's soundtrack.  Check it out and see if the symphony will playing in or near your town, you won't be disappointed.     

Monday, May 15, 2017

Trans Siberian Orchestra Christmas Eve and Other Stories Album Review

When Savatage decided to become TSO in 1996 they decided to make the Dead Winter Dead  be their inspiration for their music going forward.  They would focus on a combination of Christmas themed music and their classical metal style they used in Savatage. This combination would come to be when TSO debuted in 1996 with the Christmas Eve and Other Stories albums.

Musically, they deliver big time on this record.  This album has some of the best instrumental songs I have heard in a while.  From the heavy hitting Christmas Eve Sarajevo, to the classical rock combo of O Come All Ye Faithful, this album is full of amazing instrumentals.  The vocal songs are amazing as well.  You have great classical voices on songs such as An Angel Came Down.  Then you got more bluesy style vocals on songs like Good King Joy and This Christmas Day.  The music on the vocal songs is nothing to overlook as well.  The guitar solo in This Christmas Day is a great melodic solo that helps give that powerful feel to the song.  The same thing can be said about An Angel Returned, the melodic solo helps drive that Christmas Spirit the song is going for.


Lyrically, this album is all Christmas themed, like the music.  What makes the Christmas theme work so well lyrically is how the band makes every song with lyrics in it a story.  For example,  Good King Joy does a great job of sing about the Nativity.  When you listen to that song you hear a great blues take on the journey of the wise men and the birth of Jesus Christ.  Another example would be This Christmas Day.  This song is about a families daughter returning home on Christmas Day and them celebrating Christmas joyfully when she returns.  With each set of lyrics telling a great Christmas story, you are in for a series of very compelling lyrics.  

Christmas Eve and Other Stories is not just a great Christmas album, but a great rock album as well.  It is one of the few albums I have seen that successfully reaches both the rock crowd and the non rock crowd.  If you are a metal head or rocker you need to buy this record.  If you are looking for good quality Christmas music you need to buy this record.  While the album is available on ITunes, I recommend getting a physical copy of this record.  The album artwork is amazing and seeing how many people contributed to it in the booklet is memorable.  If you see it in a record store in a CD section don't hesitate, buy it!! 

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Top 5 Gackt Songs

Gackt has become one of the most famous singers to come out of Japan.  Getting his start in the 90's with the visual kei band, Malice Mizer, Gackt developed a reputation as a good singer and after seven years with Malice Mizer he left the band to pursue a solo career that would make him one of the biggest celebrities in Japan  and would develop a good following in Europe and the U.S.  He has written several hits and is without a doubt one of the biggest rock stars in Japan.  With that, lets count down the top 5 Gackt songs.  

5.  Black Stone

 Black Stone is one Gackt's early songs that is basically a love song about that talks about going through life together through the good and bad times.  Gackt sounds great in this song vocally, and the band and music overall sounds great as well.  Compared to a lot of his other songs, this is a good soft easy listening enjoyable song.  The guitar solo is a little repetitive, but the overall the song is enjoyable and certainly worth a buy.  

4.  Stay The Ride Alive

Stay The Ride Alive is a good combination of rock and orchestra music.  Some people think that the two styles of music don't work well together and I greatly disagree with that. The orchestra really helps the song sound more powerful and while the song would not be bad without it, the song wouldn't be as powerful without the orchestra.  Lyrically, this is a good inspirational song about not giving up about no matter how bad things get. Sadly, only the live orchestra version is available on ITunes, but you can get this CD on Ebay and I highly recommend it.

3.  P.S. I Love You

P.S. I Love You is one of the most powerful and most depressing songs I have ever heard.  Basically, the whole song is someone reading a farewell letter from their spouse that just passed away.  Gackt's vocals and the music match the mood of the lyrics perfectly.  The piano  fits the sadness and then the heavier music expresses the grief one feels when the person they love passes away.  This song is well written, well composed, and is worth a buy, get it on ITunes, Ebay, Amazon.

2.  Jesus
Jesus is a song about someone contemplating suicide and the mind set one has when they are going through that.  Now, some people think that this is an anti Christian or an anti religious song.  I personally don't see it that way.  It is about someone who is considering taking his own life, nothing more.  The music is a good combo of dark and heavy rock gives the song the song it's desperate feel. The music video fits the song perfectly and I highly recommend checking it out to get the full feel of the song.  Disclaimer, their is violent imagery in video, but none the less I recommend it.  Both the music video and the song itself are available on ITunes, buy them.

1.  Setsugekka- The End of Silence
The End of Silence is another sorrowful song about missing someone you care about deeply that passed away.  I really like the composing method that is used in this song musically.  It starts out with the soft piano, then you get a slight build, a soft verse and pre chorus, and then they bust out a power heavy chorus.  You think you are in for a softer ballad and then you are hit with a powerful chorus and I think that is awesome.  Another musical element I love about this song is the violin solo.  It is a good twist and very unique, especially in an age where you don't see violin in rock too much anymore.  This song in my opinion is a must.  It is available on ITunes, Amazon, and Ebay.  Do what ever it takes, but buy this song.   

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Nocturnal Bloodlust Libra Review

Nocturnal Bloodlust is one of the most interesting visual kei band and death metal bands I have ever heard.  While they certainly have a good amount of songs that fit in the traditional death metal, hardcore feel, they are also very melodic with good riffs and powerful vocals.  This song brings out all those different elements this band has very well and as a result you got a unique metal ballad.

Musically this song has a lot going on.  It starts with that mellow build up and then goes into a powerful intro with  Daichi playing a melodic solo and Natsu playing a unique drum beat as he is famous for in this band.  Hiro's vocals are very good and very mixed in this song.  In the verse and chorus he gives a good melodic singing voice and in the middle he gives his death metal, hardcore vocals, giving a good diverse feel to the song.  I personally am not the biggest fan of growling and screaming vocals, however it doesn't kill the song for me and it adds a nice twist to the song that  I can appreciate. Cazqui's solo is a good combo of melodic guitar playing and speed.  He starts out with the classic Japanese speed solo and then goes on to add melodic touches through out and delivers a very good solo.  Cazqui is a very good guitar player and in my opinion he is very underrated.  He is very diverse in his playing and is able to go in whatever direction he chooses rather then sticking to a certain style of soloing as many other guitar players do. 

Lyrically this is a good song as well.  It is basically about standing by the things you love you matter what the obstacles are.  A good message and one that I wish music brought up more often lyrically. The lyrics fit the tone and music perfectly which really makes the message stick out more.  The lyrics are deep and with Hiro's singing matching that deepness, the message really comes through and resonates with you.  

This song certainly has a lot going for it.  With the deep lyrics and a band that has great musicians, you get a real unique and memorable song.  I highly recommend checking this song out, even if you are not a fan of screaming or growling vocals, this song still has a lot to offer.  The guitar playing of Daichi and Cazqui is amazing, Natsu's drum work is impressive, and when Hiro gets melodic he delivers great vocals.  Considering all that and the deep lyrics I give this song a 4.5 out of 5.  

Monday, May 8, 2017

Top 5 Sistar Songs

Recently I have started to get more into Sistar recently after I discovered their song I Swear.  I was really impressed by the girls vocal abilities and was curious enough to look deeper in their catalog.  Overall, they have some pretty impressive music.  All four girls are good singers and are certainly worth recognition.  This time, I count down the top 5 Sistar songs.

5.  Shake It
Initially when I saw this title I was a little worried.  I didn't know who Sistar was at the time and I thought that it would just be another generic pop song.  If you look at it from a lyrical stand point, then there is nothing to be impressed by.  However, with the catchy music and the girls amazing vocals, you got a song that is fun and enjoyable.  Hyorin and Dasom do a great job in this song, with Hyorin singing great leads and Dasom really bringing out the catchy nanana parts, she plays in big part in giving this song its catchy feel.  

4.  I Like That
I Like that has a more darker feel to it.  Basically this is about a women breaking up with her ex because she caught him cheating on her.  The music in this song is pretty catchy and easily hooks you into the song.  This is another song where Hyorin and Dasom shine.  With both of them doing a good job leading the song vocally they capture the mood perfectly.  I would slightly say that Dasom's voice fits this song best out of everybody else, but that doesn't diminish the fact that all four of them are good in this song.

3.  Touch My Body
Touch My Body is a feel good song about the girls having a crush on a guy and wanting to spend time with him.  Lyrically there isn't much special about this song.  This is a message we have heard a million times and it's become a cliche at this point.  However, musically and vocally this is one of Sistar's most catchy songs.  This one I can't really say who stands out most, they all do a good job.  Bora's rapping sounds great, Hyorin, Dasom, and Soyou all sound good when they are singing.  This has been credited as the song that got Sistar world wide attention and I can see why.  With it being catchy musically and vocally it can capture the attention of anybody who listens to it.  

2.  Loving U
Loving U is another feel good song, pretty similar to Touch My Body.  A feel good song about having a crush on someone.  Musically, it is a little more simple but that is made up for in the girls vocals.   I would say that Soyou and Bora are the best in this song.  Soyou's voice matches the mood perfectly and Bora's rapping also fits the song well.  The thing that makes this song stand out so well, aside from the members excellent vocals, is the catchy chorus.  Out of all the songs I have heard from Sistar so far, this is defiantly  one that I remember most for it's chorus.  

1.  I Swear
I Swear is very good song, about being loyal to the person you love.  The music itself is pretty good, with its upbeat vibe and good use of the saxophone this is some of the most memorable music in Sistar's discography.  Vocally, Hyorin and Soyou sound amazing  and once again, Bora does a good job rapping.  Without a doubt this is one of the best songs I have heard Hyorin singing on.  I do feel a bad for Dasom in this song though.  She gets a short section to shine and then sticks to backup vocals on the rest of the song.  Having said that I still think this is one of the best Sistar song and it gave me a good introduction to Sistar.    

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Diaura Lily Review

Diaura is a Visual Kei band out of Tokyo Japan that started in 2010.  Famed for the deep melodic voice of the singer, Yo-Ka, and the melodic guitar playing of Kei, the band has become a fairly popular band in Japan.  They are also one of the most active bands in Japan, constantly touring and writing new music, they have certainly put out a lot of material in their career so far and most of it is pretty decent.  With that lets review Lily.

Musically, this song is a good power ballad feel with music that is heavy, but is soft enough to appeal to easy listening people.  It is not a complex song technique wise, the rhythm is pretty simple and standard, and the guitar is simple as well.  However, even with the simplicity it still sounds pretty good.  One of the biggest highlights is with out a doubt Yo-Ka's vocals.  The guy is a good singer and  his vocal melody adds a great amount of depth to the song.  Kei's guitar solo is also pretty good.  It is not technical or tricky, but it has a good melodic style to is that really works with the song.  

Lyrically this is a great song.  Basically, the song is about someone losing someone they love and the pain that causes and then at the end of the song they wake up to see their loved one is still alive.  the lyrics are a good message  to value those you love and not to let them go.  Yo-Ka has said himself that the lyrics were inspired by a dream he had about him losing his parents. I always love it when a person writes lyrics that come from a real place in their souls rather then from management telling that person what to write and for that the song gets a lot of points from me. 

The music video is pretty simple as well.  First thing to point out is that even though the band is wearing a lot of eye make up, they really are not to over the top with the make up compared to their other videos.  They are not wearing lipstick, no insane colored contacts, and their cloths are not over the top.  Compared to other Visual Kei videos I have seen this one is pretty tamed.  For the most part they look like normal guys in this video, which is refreshing to see every once in a while in Visual Kei.  As for the video it self, it is nothing to special.  I see the symbolism in the chair scene and the scene  where the band members are looking around confused, however though it isn't anything too special.  Having said that, this video goes with the mood and message of the song very well and for that I give this video props.  

While the song is simple in the instrumental section, the lyrical depth is very impressive and defiantly worth noting.  Yo-Ka's voice adds a lot of depth and makes the song feel more effective in it's tone in message.  Kei's melodic guitar solo is a nice section that really adds on to the depth they are going for.  In the end, it is a good song with a very good message and is effective in communicating that message.  I give this song a 4.5 out of 5.   

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Top 5 Prog Rock Bands

Prog Rock is without a doubt one of the most experimental styles of music out there.  With the unique chords, instrument techniques, and rhythm patterns, this is a musical style that is not like any other.
Prog Rock bands have inspired many musicians to experiment and get better at their instrument and I believe that Prog Rock played a big part in helping music progress and would help bring out some of the greatest musicians we have today.  Lets see the top 5 Prog Rock bands

5.  Yes
Yes is a band that is famed for the unique guitar playing of Steve Howe, and the high range vocals of Jon Anderson.  Started in the 70's, Yes is considered one of the fore fathers of Prog and would develop a sound driven by clean guitar playing, high vocals, and space sounding keyboards. Yes would go through many line up changes through out the decades but every musician that has ever been apart of this band is very talented and helped Yes produce many great songs.  The band got inducted in the Rock N Roll Hall of Fame in 2017 and all the long time members got together and put on an amazing performance.  Yes has a huge catalog of great albums and music, all of which are available on ITunes, Amazon, or to preview on Spotify, check them out,

4.  U.K.
Now, UK may not be one of the most popular Prog bands in the world, but they are still a very talented band that deserves recognition.  They are known mainly for their keyboard player, Eddie Jobson, however, their guitar player Allan Holdsworth  and bass player/ singer Bill Bruford are also worth noting.  They bring their own great musical styles that really give UK a great sound.  Their self titled first album got them on a good start to fame.  However, due to musical differences and with punk on the rise, the band never got the chance to reach their full potential and would disband in 1980, with them only putting out two studio albums. Since then, the band has done some one off reunions here and there but sadly they will mainly go down in history as a speck in rock history.  Their first 2 albums are both amazing and I can't recommend them enough, buy them.

3.  Genesis

Most people know Genesis for their mega success in the 80's, however they actually started off in the 70's as a talented Prog Rock band.  Back then, Phil Collins was the bands drummer and lead vocals was performed by Peter Gabriel. Steve Hackett played guitar while Mike Rutherford stuck to bass.  Through out the 70's this version of the band would go on to put out some Prog classics such as the Lamb Lies Down On Broadway, and since has inspired many current bands such as the popular Mastadon.  Genesis would stick to Prog until the 80's when Steve Hackett and Peter Gabriel left.  Then we got the pop hit Genesis most people know of.  However though, they did keep small elements of Prog in their music through out the 80's.  They got inducted in the Rock N Roll Hall Of Fame in 2010, securing their place in music history.  I highly recommend checking out this bands 70's Prog, even if you prefer their 80's era, don't hesitate to give this era a listen.

2.  Pink Floyd

Pink Floyd is most certainly one of the most famous Prog bands in history.  Ranging from the excellent guitar playing of David Gilmour to keyboard mastery of Rick Wright, Pink Floyd is defiantly a legendary band.  They started in the 60's as a more psychedelic band, but once David Gilmour joined they went full Prog.  Some of the bands most famous albums consist of Dark Side of The Moon, and The Wall.  Sadly, with the bands bass player, Roger Waters, trying to seek more control in the band, the tension got intense and would lead to bad blood between Roger Waters and the rest of the band.  In 1980 Roger Waters left Pink Floyd and since then there has been nothing but negative feelings between the rest of the band and him.  While they have done a few shows with Roger Waters since then, they overall can't stand to be in the same room with him, so don't get your hopes up on a reunion.  The band got inducted in the Rock N Roll Hall Of Fame in 1996 and rightfully so considering how much of an impact they made to music.  I don't think I have to recommend looking into this band, chances are you have heard quite a few songs from them already.

1.  Rush

Rush is possibly the biggest Prog Rock band around today.  With all three members being extremely talented musicians, they busted out a good combination of Prog and Hard rock that is still relevant today.  From the fantastic drum work of  Neil Peart, to the high range vocals and bass playing of Geddy Lee, and Alex Lifeson's guitar playing, everybody brings something unique that truly makes Rush a one of a kind band.  They almost didn't make it, but once they came out with the 2112 album they cemented their place in music history and would continue to produce great music through the following decades.  The band finally got inducted into the Rock N Roll Hall of Fame in 2013 and all I can say is it's about time.  You have heard some songs from this band already from radio, t.v., and movies,  but I urge you to look deeper into this bands catalog and see all that they have to offer.  Trust me, you won't be disappointed. 

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Top 5 Underrated 80's Metal Bands

There is without a doubt a tone of great bands that came out of the 80's.  On the one hand, you got the 80's hair bands such as, Dokken, Motley Crue, and Ratt that not just had a glam look, but also had amazing musicians that made some of the best music in history.  On the other, you got the rise of thrash with bands like Megadeth, Metallica, and Anthrax bring a new heavy style to metal that wasn't seen before.  However, there are also a lot of bands that fell through the cracks and didn't get the attention they deserve.  For this list I will count the most underrated bands of  80's metal.  

5.  TNT

TNT is a Norwegian band founded in 1982 by guitarist Ronni Le Tekro and drummer Diesel Dahl.  Theye would perform in Norwegian music scene with a range of members before finally securing bassist Morty Black and American singer, Tony Harnell.  This line up would bring TNT to the international scene with the release of their Tell No Tales album in 1987.  With their single 10,000 Lovers, they finally gain traction in Europe, Japan, and the US.  The band would go on to have one more successful album in 1989, Intuition.  This record would feature some classic TNT songs such as Intuition itself and Tonight I'm Falling.  With the high vocal range of Tony Harnell and the melodic guitar playing of Ronni Le Tekro, TNT has slight European style that makes this band very unique.  Sadly, just as they were gaining traction they would suffer the same problem as the majority of the bands on this list would suffer.  That problem came in the form of grunge.  With the rise of grunge only a few years away TNT would decline and never get a chance to get the attention they deserved.  The good news is that this band would go on to fight through the grunge movement and are still making music and touring today.  Their music is available on ITunes, Amazon, and Ebay.  If you like good melodic metal I highly recommend their Tell No Tales, and Intuition albums.  Those albums have a ton of great songs with almost no filler.  Buy these records, along with the rest of their music.   

4.  Trixter

Trixter is an American band that formed with Pete Loran as lead singer, Steve Brown on guitar, Mike Pane on drums, and Douglas Cowie on bass.  For many years they would make their way around the concert scene and in that time Pane and Cowie would quit the band and in 1988 they got their classic line up with P.J. Farley taking over on bass, and Mark Gus Scott on drums.  Trixter is a band famed for their great vocals and Steve Browns combo of hard rock, melodic, and country sounding guitar playing. this style gained them a ton of fame, not just in the rock community but in the charts as well.  In 1989 they debuted their self titled record and would gain traction on the charts.  Their single, Line Of Fire, would gain popularity through radio play and would work its way to No. 1 on the charts.  They followed that with a video for their song, Give It To Me Good.  This would lead them to tour with great bands such as Stryper, Dokken, and Warrant.  They would experience success again in with their second single, One in a Million reaching No. 1, and their album reaching number 28 on the Billboards top 200 album chart.  However, as quickly as their fame came it was gone.  They tried getting through the grunge scene at first, but by 1995 they gave in and disbanded.  However, they would reunite in 2008 to perform at the sold out Rocklahoma Festival.  Since then, the band has been active and continues to make music today.  Their music is available on ITunes and Amazon.  Their self titled album is a great introduction to this bands music and I highly recommend it.

 3.  Loudness
Loudness is a band out of Japan that was found in 1981 by guitarist Akira Takasaki, bassist Masayoshi Yamashita, Munetaka Higuchi on drums, and Minoru Niihara on lead vocals.  They gained fame in Japan in the early 80's until their 1985 western debut, Thunder in the East.  Their single, Crazy Nights was a big hit that earned a lot of air time on MTV, leading them to great success in the US.  Their success would grow when they released their Lighting Strikes album.  Their single, Let it Go, would be a commercial success and would earn the band tons of fame in the U.S. and Europe.  Sadly though, they would never reach the same status as many of their fellow 80's metal bands and never got the recognition they deserved.  They almost achieved it, just like the other bands, grunge came along.  The good news for this band was that the were still pretty popular in Japan, so while they didn't have popularity in the west anymore, they could turn to their home country and they would spend the bulk of the 90's in Japan.  A big reason for this is mainly because grunge music never took route in Japan, glam just evolved into Visual Kei.  However, in 2000 they would start going more abroad again. I highly recommend this bands Lightning Strikes album and Thunder in the East.  Akira is an underrated guitar player and should be given more glory.  Their music is available on ITunes and Amazon, get it.

2.  Autograph
Autograph is an  American band  founded in 1983 with Steve Lynch on guitar, Steve Plunkett on lead vocals and guitar, Randy Rand on bass, Keni Richards on drums, and Steven Isham on Keyboards.  Autograph has an interesting claim to fame.  The band never made their way around the club scene, or local concert scene.  Instead, Keni, who was friends with David Lee Roth from Van Halen, was able to talk David Lee Roth into opening for Van Halen on their 1984 tour.  During this time the released their debut album, Sing In Please.  This album would contain the bands biggest hit, Turn Up The Radio.  the song would become a top 30 hit, it would help Sign In Please become a gold album, and Steve Lynch would wing guitar solo of the year in Guitar Player Magazine.  Steve Lynch's two hand tapping solos would become one of the biggest highlights of the bands music, making him truly an underrated guitar player.  Sadly, like the old saying goes, easy come easy go, the band would never achieve the same level of success they did with Turn Up The Radio and as a result would disband in 1989.  However, they would reunite in 2013 and have been active ever since, with the exception that singer, Steve Plunkett choosing not to rejoin the band.  Sign In Please is defiantly an album worth buying, especially when it comes to Steve Lynch's guitar playing.  Get it on ITunes or secure a physical copy, but do whatever it takes to listen to it.

1.  Leatherwolf
Leatherwolf is an American band founded in 1981  with Michael Oliveri on lead vocals and guitar, Dean Roberts on drums, Carey Howe on guitar, Geoff Cayer on guitar, and Matt Hurich on bass.  The band played on the L.A. club scene with the rest of the other hair bands until they debuted with their self titled album in 1987.  Their single, The Calling, would help the band gain a lot of traction in popularity, leading them to open for some of the more popular bands of the era.  They would follow that with their second album, Street Ready.  The single, Hideaway, continued the bands momentum, leading them to bigger crowds and more radio play.  However, at the height of their career, grunge became the new thing and as a result the bands fame came to an end and they disbanded in 1991.  They would reunite in 1999 and have continued to tour and write new music since then.  This is a band I highly recommend, especially their first album.  While they may have looked glam, they didn't sound glam.  Where as the majority of the bands of that era talked about partying and sex, Leatherwolf was a more heavier, darker band.  For example, the opening song on their self titled album, Rise Or Fall, is about the death of a king.  another example, Princess of Love, is a song about a ghost ship.  Also, this band is another example of great guitar players not getting the attention they deserve.  These guys are some of the most talented guitar players to come out of the 80's and it is a real shame they are not recognized for it.  Their music is available on ITunes, buy it, listen to it, enjoy it.  

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, Let Me Hear Review

Fear and Loathing is a very interesting band musically.  They range from electronica metal, to flat out hardcore metal.  This gives the band a sound that is very unique and something you really don't here out of too many other bands.  Their unique style has propelled Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas to fame in Japan and has helped them achieve a good size audience among other metal lovers around the world.  Their songs are featured in many anime shows, like their Just Awake song as the ending in the Hunter X Hunter anime, and this one as the opening for the Parasyte anime.  Considering all this, it is hard for me not to want to talk about one of their songs.

Musically, there is a lot going on in this song.  First thing I want to point out is the guitar playing of Sxun and Taiki in this song.  It has a good heavy sound that really gives the song a good energetic boost.  The keyboard playing of Keisuke Minami are also pretty good and is part of that electronica feel that I mentioned earlier. When it comes to the vocals, I like the singing melody of the clean vocalist, So Takeda.  My one criticism of  his singing is the fact that he is singing the entire song in auto tune.  I think the song would be fine without it from my perspective.  However,  I do believe that he does it for the electronic feel and I will give him credit for at least not trying to hide it like many other artists have done.  He is basically using it as an instrument.  The composition of this song is the most interesting thing about this song.  Through out the song they go trough many types of metal and music genres.  At first it is an electronic metal song, then goes into new metal, to metal core, back to the electronic style, and ends with metal core once more.  Even though it changes the tone often, it actually works.  The transitions are executed very well and the song doesn't feel choppy which very hard to pull off if you are going to do a song like this, but these guys did it very well.  

Lyrically, this song works pretty well for the anime it is attached to.  Lyrically this song is about humanity believing that it is superior on Earth and taking it for granted.  It's about finding out humanity's real place and purpose in the world.  This matches the Parasyte anime theme perfectly and is very effective in portraying the anime's message.  However, outside the anime, the song lyrics don't really stand out all that much. The lyrics are not bad, but for a song that is as musically driven as this one they are not that notable.  

While the lyrics may not stand out that much, the music certainly does.  With the deep heavy guitar and the interesting musical transitions this is defiantly one of the more interesting songs I have heard.  The band did not take a traditional route musically and really experimented with song transitions that you really haven't seen anywhere else except some prog metal.  For their different song structure and successfully making that structure sound good, I give this song a 4.5 out of 5.     

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Top 5 Disney Ride Soundtracks

When it comes to theme parks and their rides one of the most important components of those rides is the music and sound effects they use on them.  While you may not need it for thrilling roller coasters, you certainly need it for the slower rides and themed rides.  One reason you need music in rides is because without it the ride feels weird and uneasy.  Another reason is because, if you don't feel uneasy, then you get board.  Music and sound effects play a big part in a rides entertainment factor and without it theme park rides are not as entertaining.  This time around, I will give the top 5 ride soundtracks from the iconic Disneyland.

5.  Indiana Jones 
One thing I like about this soundtrack is how well it executes a story like feel to it.  This is a soundtrack where even if you are not on the ride and you just listen to this you get a good feel of what the ride will be like and what components will be in it.  Another big plus for this soundtrack is how well it utilizes John Williams's classic score for the movies.  It is pulling mainly from The Raiders of the Lost Ark and The Temple of Doom movies.  While it may only be small chunks from the songs, they flow well and it sets up not just a great ride experience, but a great listening experience as well. The music is available on ITunes bit without any of the voice acting or narration.  Even without that it still capture the magic of not just ride, but the movies as well, buy it.

4.  Soarin Over California
This music is a beautiful orchestra song that makes for both an amazing ride experience and listening experience.  Composed by Jerry Goldsmith, who has composed for movies such as Alien, Rudy, and composed the score for Disney's Mulan in 1998, delivers a score that matches each scene in the ride perfectly and really enhances the experience of the ride.  From the calm feel of going through the Redwoods, and Palm Springs, to the powerful energy of Yosemite and the Navy Carrier, this song captures all that with an amazing flow to make the ride feel smooth.  This is song that doesn't just belong on the ride, but with its great composition it makes for a great orchestra song on its own, I highly recommend buying it on either ITunes, or one of the Disney music collections that includes it.

3. Phantom Manor
While I love the Haunted Mansion ride we have in Anaheim California, I cannot deny the effective soundtrack of the Phantom Manor ride in Disneyland Paris.  One thing I like about this soundtrack is that, while the American  Haunted Mansion is more comedic this soundtrack at times actually makes you feel uneasy and makes you feel like you should be scared at times.  This is an approach I wish the American ride would take a little more.  The first thing I would like to point out in this soundtrack is the excellent narration performed by Vincent Price.  Price does a good job caring out a creepy sounding guide that sticks with you in the ride and plays a huge part in keeping you engaged with the ride.  The second thing is the brilliant musical composition done by John Debney.  The music he composes really helps to create emphasis on Vincent Price's narration, and also creates a very spooky atmosphere that keeps you on edge through the ride.  This Suite is available on ITunes, but you can only get it if you buy the entire Haunted Mansion soundtrack, which is not a bad soundtrack itself.  If you want a physical copy, they sell it in Downtown Disney at the Disney store, or if you are in Disneyland you can pick it up in the park, whether it is California, Florida.  

2. Splash Mountain
The Splash Mountain soundtrack is like a mini album of fun sounding songs.  From the opening How Do You Do, to the classic Zip A Dee Doo Dah, you get good collection of great Disney music.  Each segment of the ride feels like your heading into a music video for each song and the atmosphere is executed well. While there is a story in the ride it isn't the main focus.  This is a ride where the music is the main focus and because it is well executed it makes the ride very enjoyable.  While the movie it is based on may be controversial, the music is still great and I recommend you go on to ITunes and by this soundtrack

1.  The Original Pirates of The Caribbean
The original Pirates of the Caribbean soundtrack is a classic ride soundtrack.  From the classic songs such as Yo Ho A Pirates Life For Me, to all the amazing instrumentals such as the bayou banjo music and Dead Men Tell No Tales section.  This soundtrack is one of the best, if not the best examples of Disney matching the music and sound effects perfectly.  Each scene is memorable and all the different takes on Yo Ho are entertaining and fun to hear.  Disney Studios certainly did an amazing job of not just creating a great sounding soundtrack, but matching it with atmosphere and feel of the pirate times perfectly.  The soundtrack for this ride is available on Itunes, as well as the Disney Store in Downtown Disney, and in many areas of Disneyland itself.  Do whatever you have to, but get it and listen to it