REVIEWS by Michael “Jacobs” McKenna
Joe Scarsone is that type of musician who embraces values, lives for a cause, and is not afraid to bring anything to the forefront. Brought up on the streets of West Philly, his daily exposure to the problems of the area led him to be a crusader for various causes and giving back to the community. One of the items on his long list include Anti-Bullying and he devotes a lot of time to going into the inner city and regional schools to talk directly to today’s youth who are experiencing this in theirdaily lives. Music is an escape where Flintface can express himself both in his lyrics and rock/alternative compositions. Teaming with producer Ross Hogarth of John Mellencamp and John Fogerty fame, Hope became a reality. The list of musicians who contributed to this effort include Rami Jaffee (The Wallflowers, Foo Fighters), Tim Pierce (Jason Mraz, Bruce Springsteen), Randy Cooke (Eurythmics, Kelly Clarkson), Kenny Aronoff (The Smashing Pumpkins, John Mellencamp), Chris Chaney (Jane’s Addiction), Matt Rollings (Lyle Lovett), Matt Chamberlain (Edie Brickell& The New Bohemians), Cameron Stone & Loren Gold (The Who), Jessy Greene (Foo Fighters, P!nk, The Jayhawks). His touring band includes Darrell Jones (lead guitar &vox), Billy Sims (bottom), Chris DeMas (percussion), Anthony Scorsone (rhythm guitar) and Beth Scorsone on backing vox. Filled with songs that cut into today’s societal issues, these 9 tracks communicate Joe’s message in a very precise direct manner. “On Your Feet Again” is an urban rock/rap number that should be on every AOR/CHR radio station in the country! “Army of Rejects” is a catchy song that talks about the unlistened who band together to make a difference and let their voices be heard. Awesome hook! “When Culture Calls” is a cool mid-tempo number about what people deal with in their lives. “Rock Steady” has a nice retro/mod sound that has the line ‘steady like a metronome’ as society blindly follows the beat of the drummer. “Ready For It” is a monster that goes deep into ones being and feelings. One of this CD’s best! “Buying What You’re Selling” deals with the name calling that pervades today’s society and encourages one to be what they want to be and really are – without the bullshit. “Found My Voice” makes a statement about one’s self-esteem and inner strengths coming out from those depths buried inside. “Did I Stutter” is totally in your face with descriptive lyrics mated with pounding rock overtones that just kicks ass. ‘This is not your time to speak, tell me did I stutter then’. The title track “Hope” takes it down a notch with this telling ballad that says ‘after you lost it all, there’s nothing left to lose at all’. This rings true with a lot of people who have been down on the bottom rung of the ladder and are working their way back up. I was amazed at the message projected in these 9 tracks along with some of the best scores I have heard in a long time. This is one of the 5 best CD’s I’ve listened to in 2014. A MUST BUY! I give this 2 THUMBS UP!
108 | Steel Notes Magazine