New Song of the Week – COUNCIL: “Savages”

Council Savages

I’ve been following New York alternative rock band COUNCIL for the past four years, and have featured them on this blog a number of times, beginning in 2016 when I reviewed their debut EP Rust to Gold, and most recently in June 2019 with the release of their single “Born Ready”. (You can check out those reviews under “Related” at the bottom of this post.) Through their signature sweeping melodies, bold instrumentation and anthemic choruses, COUNCIL’s dynamic sound has been compared to Imagine Dragons. Their magnificent life-affirming single “Rust to Gold” received worldwide acclaim, including being played at the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Winter Olympics and the FIFA World Cup, as well as on American Idol, So You Think You Can Dance, World Of Dance and Premier League. It’s been streamed more than 7 million times on Spotify, and ended up on my list of 100 Best Songs of 2017.

Council3

COUNCIL is comprised of three strikingly handsome brothers – Patrick, Doug and Andy Reeves. Patrick (bass and lead vocals) and Doug (drums) are twins, and Andy (guitar) is a year younger. Raised on a farm in rural upstate New York, they now split their time between tending the family farm and working on their music in New York City. The guys have just released their latest single “Savages“, which I’ve chosen as my New Song of the Week.

It’s a darkly beautiful and grandiose anthem, highlighted by a complex mix of dramatic industrial synths. The track opens with spooky synths and haunting plucked guitar notes that set an ominous tone. The music then expands with sharp percussive synths, deep bass and thunderous echoed reverb sounds that add a palpable sense of tension and foreboding. The instrumentals are really spectacular, and the finest of any song COUNCIL has done thus far.

The lyrics speak of a couple for whom the love that originally brought them together has turned into hate and acrimony for one another. Patrick fervently laments that they now behave like savages to each other, his vocals soaring to a passionate wail in the chorus.

All the plans that we made were just a lost cause
It’s like we turn a parade into a death march
A dirty angel landed on my shoulder
She said be calm and let the drums take over
I’m just trying to blow these ashes into sparks
We live like savages, savages…oh oh, savages!

Connect with Council:  Website / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram
Stream their music:  Spotify / Soundcloud / ReverbnationApple Music
Purchase it:  iTunesGoogle Play

New Song of the Week: COUNCIL – “Born Ready”

Council Born Ready
Photos by Evgeny Photography

New York alternative rock band COUNCIL are an act I’ve been following for over three years, and it’s been gratifying to watch their star rise (I hope they’ll still remember me when they get huge). With their sweeping melodies, bold instrumentation and anthemic choruses, COUNCIL’s dynamic sound has been compared to Imagine Dragons. I first featured them back in September 2016 when I reviewed their debut EP Rust to Gold, and they’ve been on an upward trajectory ever since. Their magnificent life-affirming lead single “Rust to Gold” received worldwide acclaim, including being played at the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Winter Olympics and the FIFA World Cup, as well as on American Idol, So You Think You Can Dance, World Of Dance and Premier League. It’s been streamed more than 4 million times on Spotify, and ended up on my list of 100 Best Songs of 2017.

Council

COUNCIL is comprised of three strikingly handsome brothers – Patrick, Doug and Andy Reeves. Patrick (bass and lead vocals) and Doug (drums) are twins, and Andy (guitar) is a year younger. Originally raised on a farm in rural upstate New York, they now split their time between tending the family farm and working on their music in New York City. The guys followed “Rust to Gold” with another great single “The World is on Fire” in July 2017, which I also reviewed, and now return with their first new single in nearly two years, “Born Ready“, which drops June 21st.

Like many of their songs, “Born Ready” is a powerful, uplifting anthem. Musically, however, it’s a bit of a departure for them, with a darker, more synth-heavy sound. It opens with an ominous bass-heavy horn synth as the guys chant “Born ready, born ready…oh oh oh, oh oh oh!“, which is then followed by a high-pitched electronically-altered vocal chorus repeatedly wailing “Born ready, born ready“, giving the track an otherworldly feel. As the moody synths swirl, somber piano keys, wobbly bass and thunderous drums enter the mix. Patrick fervently sings “I was born with a storm inside me. Hurricane full of rage set me free. Try to pray but the devil he finds me. Someone lift me up, someone lift me up./ On the run, here it comes.” Then all three brothers sing the soaring chorus “I was born ready, born ready. Oh oh oh, oh oh oh!”

Doug told me the lyrics were written from the perspective of a person who comes to terms with who they are, realizing that instead of allowing themself to be beaten up by the world, they have to acknowledge they were always “born ready” to empower themself to rise up and face all the shit the world throws at them. Although I don’t think “Born Ready” is quite as strong a single as “Rust to Gold”, I really like its dark, anthemic melody and edgier, synth-heavy vibe. And, as with all their songs, the production values, instrumentation and vocals are first-rate. I also like that COUNCIL is experimenting with their music and trying new sounds and styles, and can’t wait to hear what they come up with next.

COUNCIL will be appearing with The Strumbellas on Saturday, June 29 at Sharkey’s in Liverpool, New York. Order tickets by clicking here.

Connect with Council:  Website / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram
Stream their music:  Spotify / Soundcloud / Reverbnation
Purchase it:  iTunes 

COUNCIL – Single Review: “The World is on Fire”

Alternative pop/rock band COUNCIL has been on an upward trajectory since the release of their debut EP Rust to Gold in November 2016 (which I reviewed and you can read here). Based in rural upstate New York, the band consists of three handsome brothers –Patrick, Doug and Andy Reeves.  Patrick (bass and lead vocals) and Doug (drums) are twins, and Andy (guitar) is a year younger, and I think it’s awesome that all three are talented musicians who’ve chosen to work together as a band, not to mention humble guys who are kind, gracious and appreciative of their fans.

Council bros

Rust to Gold, which was self released, has been wildly successful, garnering over 2.6 million streams in 16 countries on Spotify. The superb lead single “Rust To Gold” spent the most time of any song on Apple’s prestigious A-List Alternative Chart this year. It also spent 14 weeks on my Weekly Top 20, peaking at #7. The guys have now dropped their new single “The World is on Fire,” and it’s certain to be another big hit. The single’s being released through AWAL and Tom Sarig’s AntiFragile Records, and was produced by Justin Gray (Dirty Heads, John Legend), and mixed by Mark Needham (The Killers, Imagine Dragons).

“The World is on Fire” is an exuberant anthem that immediately grabs hold with a catchy, irresistible melody. The track kicks off with a galloping drumbeat and fuzzy synths that quickly build to a crescendo, before blasting open with Andy’s aggressive jangly guitar, Patrick’s heavy buzzing bass, and Doug pounding out the hard-driving beat with all the strength he can muster. Andy lays down some pretty awesome riffs, and there are moments where Patrick’s bass comes close to blowing the speakers.

With his impassioned vocals, Patrick sings about letting go of our lust and greed that threatens to destroy mankind, and learning to accept what’s really important and meaningful in our lives: “The world is on fire./I’ve seen enough, the violent birth of our souls. I’ve seen the lust, and I know it’s time to let it go./ Sometimes less is more than you’ll ever need. Love is like a war, but you better be sure where you place your desires.”

The guys keep the energy level at full throttle from start to finish, and I love their soaring harmonic choruses. Hell, I love everything about this fantastic song that gets better with each listen!

Connect with Council:  Website / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram

Stream their music:  Spotify / Soundcloud / Reverbnation

Purchase it:  iTunes / Bandcamp

Top 20 Songs for April 16-22, 2017

1. ON HOLD – The xx (1)
2. LOVE ON THE BRAIN – Rihanna (2)
3. HOT THOUGHTS – Spoon (6)
4. LOVE IS MYSTICAL – Cold War Kids (5)
5. HEAVYDIRTYSOUL – twenty øne piløts (3)
6. HOW DID YOU LOVE – Shinedown (7)
7. HUMAN – Rag’n’Bone Man (4)
8. WOLVES – Wide Eyed Boy (9)
9. BELIEVER – Imagine Dragons (11)
10. SHAPE OF YOU – Ed Sheeran (8)
11. LOST ON YOU – LP (13)
12. BLAME – Bastille (15)
13. GREEN LIGHT – Lorde (16)
14. SIGN OF THE TIMES – Harry Styles (N)
15. THAT’S WHAT I LIKE – Bruno Mars (12)
16. COLD COLD COLD – Cage the Elephant (18)
17. RUST TO GOLD – Council (10)
18. SOMETHING JUST LIKE THIS – The Chainsmokers, Coldplay (20)
19. MIDDLE FINGERS – MISSIO (N)
20. I NEED A LIGHT – Run With It (14)

Top 20 Songs for April 9-15, 2017

The gorgeous “On Hold” by The xx knocks Rag’n’Bone Man’s “Human” off the #1 spot after a 3-week run. Rihanna climbs to #2 with her magnificent soulful throwback song “Love on the Brain.” “Heavydirtysoul” is in the Top 20 two years after “Tear In My Heart” made it’s debut, showing the astonishing staying power of twenty øne piløts’ brilliant album Blurryface. Run With It’s “I Need a Light” spends its 15th week in the Top 20, the longest-running song on this list. And the collaboration “Something Just Like This” by The Chainsmokers and Coldplay debuts at #20.

1. ON HOLD – The xx (3)
2. LOVE ON THE BRAIN – Rihanna (5)
3. HEAVYDIRTYSOUL – twenty øne piløts (4)
4. HUMAN – Rag’n’Bone Man (1)
5. LOVE IS MYSTICAL – Cold War Kids (6)
6. HOT THOUGHTS – Spoon (9)
7. HOW DID YOU LOVE – Shinedown (8)
8. SHAPE OF YOU – Ed Sheeran (2)
9. WOLVES – Wide Eyed Boy (10)
10. RUST TO GOLD – Council (7)
11. BELIEVER – Imagine Dragons (11)
12. THAT’S WHAT I LIKE – Bruno Mars (14)
13. LOST ON YOU – LP (19)
14. I NEED A LIGHT – Run With It (15)
15. BLAME – Bastille (17)
16. GREEN LIGHT – Lorde (18)
17. 7 – Catfish and the Bottlemen (12)
18. COLD COLD COLD – Cage the Elephant (20)
19. SHINE – Mondo Cozmo (13)
20. SOMETHING JUST LIKE THIS – The Chainsmokers & Coldplay (N)

Top 20 Songs for April 2-8, 2017

1. HUMAN – Rag’n’Bone Man (1)
2. SHAPE OF YOU – Ed Sheeran (2)
3. ON HOLD – The xx (3)
4. HEAVYDIRTYSOUL – twenty øne piløts (4)
5. LOVE ON THE BRAIN – Rihanna (5)
6. LOVE IS MYSTICAL – Cold War Kids (8)
7. RUST TO GOLD – Council (7)
8. HOW DID YOU LOVE – Shinedown (10)
9. HOT THOUGHTS – Spoon (14)
10. WOLVES – Wide Eyed Boy (12)
11. BELIEVER – Imagine Dragons (13)
12. 7 – Catfish & the Bottlemen (9)
13. SHINE – Mondo Cozmo (6)
14. THAT’S WHAT I LIKE – Bruno Mars (16)
15. I NEED A LIGHT – Run With It (11)
16. I FEEL IT COMING – The Weeknd, Daft Punk (15)
17. BLAME – Bastille (20)
18. GREEN LIGHT – Lorde (N)
19. LOST ON YOU – LP (N)
20. COLD COLD COLD – Cage the Elephant (N)

Top 20 Songs for March 26-April 1, 2017

Rag’n’Bone Man’s awesome song “Human” spends a second week on top, while Ed Sheeran’s “Shape of You” holds at #2. Rihanna, The Weeknd and Bruno Mars all have fantastic songs with a retro R&B vibe. Spoon’s “Hot Thoughts” debuts at #14 and Bastille is back with “Blame,” which debuts at #20. Finally, the Lumineers’ “Cleopatra” spends its 24th week on my Top 20.

1. HUMAN – Rag’n’Bone Man (1)
2. SHAPE OF YOU – Ed Sheeran (2)
3. ON HOLD – The xx (4)
4. HEAVYDIRTYSOUL – twenty øne piløts (5)
5. LOVE ON THE BRAIN – Rihanna (6)
6. SHINE – Mondo Cozmo (3)
7. RUST TO GOLD – Council (8)
8. LOVE IS MYSTICAL – Cold War Kids (10)
9. 7 – Catfish & the Bottlemen (9)
10. HOW DID YOU LOVE – Shinedown (12)
11. I NEED A LIGHT – Run With It (7)
12. WOLVES – Wide Eyed Boy (15)
13. BELIEVER – Imagine Dragons (17)
14. HOT THOUGHTS – Spoon (N)
15. I FEEL IT COMING – The Weeknd, Daft Punk (14)
16. THAT’S WHAT I LIKE – Bruno Mars (20)
17. STILL BREATHING – Green Day (11)
18. SCARS TO YOUR BEAUTIFUL – Alessia Cara (13)
19. CLEOPATRA – The Lumineers (16)
20. BLAME – Bastille (N)

Top 20 Songs for March 19-25, 2017

1. HUMAN – Rag’n’Bone Man (2)
2. SHAPE OF YOU – Ed Sheeran (3)
3. SHINE – Mondo Cozmo (1)
4. ON HOLD – The xx (5)
5. HEAVYDIRTYSOUL – twenty øne piløts (8)
6. LOVE ON THE BRAIN – Rihanna (16)
7. I NEED A LIGHT – Run With It (7)
8. RUST TO GOLD – Council (9)
9. 7 – Catfish and the Bottlemen (13)
10. LOVE IS MYSTICAL – Cold War Kids (14)
11. STILL BREATHING – Green Day (4)
12. HOW DID YOU LOVE – Shinedown (17)
13. SCARS TO YOUR BEAUTIFUL – Alessia Cara (6)
14. I FEEL IT COMING – The Weeknd, Daft Punk (15)
15. WOLVES – Wide Eyed Boy (19)
16. CLEOPATRA – The Lumineers (10)
17. BELIEVER – Imagine Dragons (20)
18. WATER UNDER THE BRIDGE – Adele (11)
19. BLOOD IN THE CUT – K.Flay (12)
20. THAT’S WHAT I LIKE – Bruno Mars (N)

 

Top 20 Songs for March 12-18, 2017

1. SHINE – Mondo Cozmo (1)
2. HUMAN – Rag’n’Bone Man (2)
3. SHAPE OF YOU – Ed Sheeran (4)
4. STILL BREATHING – Green Day (3)
5. ON HOLD – The xx (11)
6. SCARS TO YOUR BEAUTIFUL – Alessia Cara (7)
7. I NEED A LIGHT – Run With It (8)
8. HEAVYDIRTYSOUL – twenty øne piløts (9)
9. RUST TO GOLD – Council (10)
10. CLEOPATRA – The Lumineers (5)
11. WATER UNDER THE BRIDGE – Adele (12)
12. BLOOD IN THE CUT – K.Flay (6)
13. 7 – Catfish & the Bottlemen (14)
14. LOVE IS MYSTICAL – Cold War Kids (15)
15. I FEEL IT COMING – The Weeknd, Daft Punk (16)
16. LOVE ON THE BRAIN – Rihanna (N)
17. HOW DID YOU LOVE – Shinedown (N)
18. ATLAS, RISE! – Metallica (13)
19. WOLVES – Wide Eyed Boy (N)
20. BELIEVER – Imagine Dragons (N)

Top 20 Songs for March 5-11, 2017

1. SHINE – Mondo Cozmo (2)
2. HUMAN – Rag’n’Bone Man (3)
3. STILL BREATHING – Green Day (1)
4. SHAPE OF YOU – Ed Sheeran (6)
5. CLEOPATRA – The Lumineers (4)
6. BLOOD IN THE CUT – K.Flay (5)
7. SCARS TO YOUR BEAUTIFUL – Alessia Cara (8)
8. I NEED A LIGHT – Run With It (9)
9. HEAVYDIRTYSOUL – twenty øne piløts (11)
10. RUST TO GOLD – Council (12)
11. ON HOLD – The xx (13)
12. WATER UNDER THE BRIDGE – Adele (14)
13. ATLAS, RISE! – Metallica (7)
14. 7 – Catfish and the Bottlemen (16)
15. LOVE IS MYSTICAL – Cold War Kids (19)
16. I FEEL IT COMING – The Weeknd, Daft Punk (18)
17. DON’T WANNA KNOW – Maroon 5, Kendrick Lamar (10)
18. SQUARE HAMMER – Ghost (15)
19. MY NAME IS HUMAN – Highly Suspect (20)
20. TAKE IT ALL BACK – Judah & the Lion (17)