Category Archives: Alexx Calise
Alexx Calise – In Avanti (2010, self-released)
1. “Anything Goes” … 3:37
2. “Break Me” … 3:37
3. “Cry” … 3:12
4. “Get Used To It” … 3:36
5. “Good Enough (The Dirty South Mix)” … 3:09
6. “My Song (Version 2.0)” … 3:09
7. “Out of Sight” … 3:34
8. “Saying Goodbye” … 3:37
9. “See You Again” … 4:30
Last year I reviewed Alexx Calise’s 2007 release Morning Pill. It was a good collection of radio-ready rock and pop and In Avanti is more of the same. Actually, I’m enjoying In Avanti a lot more Morning Pill, it’s just a stronger record that speaks volumes of Ms. Calise’s growth as a singer, musician and songwriter and is full of hooks and melodies that keep me coming back for more. I said in the past that Alexx was at her best when rocking out and luckily that’s what she does throughout most of this release. The album only slows down a bit for the ballads “Cry”, “Out of Sight” and “See You Again” but they are all well done, so it’s not a problem.
There’s really no reason this album shouldn’t gain Alexx even more attention. The album is made up of songs that are what I like to call “hard rock pop”. The songs are heavy enough to be considered rock songs and get on modern rock radio but they also have slick electronica dance beats that would make them sound right at home on the pop stations. It’s quite a balancing act that Alexx has mastered. My favorite tracks would have to be “Anything Goes” which was a great choice to open the album and go full throttle right from the start and “Out of Sight”, which reminds me of Evanescence.
Oh and if you’ve listened to Morning Pill and think “My Song (Version 2.0)” seems familiar, you’re right. It is an updated version of “My Song”. Often times when an artist revisits and updates past songs, it doesn’t work but his version is an improvement, it’s a powerful club rocker.
At nine songs, Alexx Calise does not wear out her welcome and leaves you wanting more. I wish more albums would be this lean! She is becoming quite the accomplished singer just as capable to sound pretty over dance & pop beats as she is to let her voice soar over crunching guitars. Anyone who doesn’t mind a modern sound and enjoys melodic hard rock should find this an enjoyable listen.
Highlights: “Anything Goes”, “Cry”, “Get Used To It”, “Good Enough (The Dirty South Mix)”, “My Song (Version 2.0)”, “Out of Sight”
Alexx Calise – Morning Pill (2007, Phantom Records)
1. “Give It to Me” … 3:39
2. “My Song” … 3:02
3. “Throw Your Words” … 3:12
4. “Nothing Feels Right (The Godlike Song)” … 2:44
5. “This Is Me” … 3:29
6. “Falling” … 3:51
7. “Touch My Hey” … 2:21
8. “Shake Dem Bones” … 2:40
9. “C’mon You” … 3:14
10. “Pull It (Bullet)” … 3:44
11. “Morning Pill” … 4:26
Immediately upon listening to this album, vocal comparisons between Alexx and Lzzy Hale from Halestorm come to mind. Alexx does not wail as much as Lzzy does but the similarities are there. With a beautiful and (dare I say) sexy voice, Alexx could have easily tossed her hat into the pop music realm and competed with a bunch of “divas” but luckily, she chose to ROCK the world with an album that is a blend of modern rock and good old-fashioned rock ‘n’ roll (and okay, there’s a touch of pop to it, especially with the stellar production values).
Seemingly on the cusp of major success, the career of Alexx Calise seems to be going nowhere but up with recent uses of her music by VH1 and The CW’s One Tree Hill and it’s easy to see why she’s in demand. Alexx is charismatic and full of rock & roll swagger. As for the music, there’s a definite sexy edge to it. This is the type of rock music that could easily get play on the mainstream pop stations.
Granted, I’m not much of a modern rock/pop guy so I would never have initially sought this album out, but with edgier hard rockin’ moments like “My Song”, “Touch My Hey” and “Pull It (Bullet)” how could I not enjoy this album? In recent months, I’ve been trying to look outside my usual circle of preferences and with this release, I’ve been pleasantly surprised.
The album is enjoyable listen all the way through but it is the harder rocking moments that are my favorite. With her second solo album on the horizon, I hope to hear more of those moments. So get in on the ground floor, kiddies, because as VH1 might say, Alexx Calise is an artist “you oughta know”.
Highlights: “Give It to Me”, “My Song”, “Touch My Hey”, “C’mon You”, “Pull It (Bullet)”, “Morning Pill”