REVIEW: Aloud “Apollo 6”


Aloud – Apollo 6

Whenever I read about young musicians having a willingness to explore new ground that’s when my radar goes on. But with Aloud it pertains to the direction they’ve chosen to probe & not reinvent anything. Risky? Sure. U2, The Beatles, Joni Mitchell & even Elvis did it.

This 4-piece band treads creatively from the usual sources but as their PR outlines they explore mediation, the detriments of social media & coping with mechanisms humans turn to in dark times. Each musician contributed from their experience about what they went through during the difficult pandemic months.


The 60s artists wrote about Vietnam, civil rights, getting high, counter culture, alternative lifestyles, living a nomadic life & the fear of nuclear annihilation. I guess the pandemic was a big deal to this generation. And so, it should be. It was an inconvenience; it was scary, it altered lifestyles & took lives.

The self-produced 10-cut Apollo 6 (Drops May 19–Lemon Merchant Records) is an unadulterated, pristine approach that doesn’t squelch their music from a preachy, whiny angle. Instead, Aloud applies all the fine qualities laid down decades ago. It has its own presence & it’s devoid of any calculated performance mannerisms. The songs are well-written & coherent. The new ground is on their California recorded set & it radiates with psychedelic textures.

With the energetic mid 60s perceptive vocals of Jen de la Osa (guitars/keys/percussion) on “The Comeback Kid” (which smokes) & the superb “Mediation for the Household.” Jen’s sharp modernized tonality & imaginative rock slices summon the ghosts of Jefferson Airplane’s Grace Slick mixed liberally with The Pretenders’ Chrissie Hyde. It spills forth convincingly. No denying the octane.

Henry Beguiristain (vocals/guitars/keys/percussion) provides “Morning Moon,” which shifts gears (quite cool) in a brief break. Ironically, Henry sounds like Marty Balin (Jefferson Airplane & Starship) with the effective backup that’s eerily like Grace. The band has muscle, doesn’t sound like an imitation. It sounds modernized.

They just utilize the best most attractive parts of these legendary performers & do it all with gratifying results. “The Origin of the Hourglass is Unclear,” finds Jen in a fine aggressive Grace Slick stance again. It works. She has urgency, tone, range & intonation with a good, charged lead guitar.

Aloud is on solid ground. Clever distinctive interplay with an impressive precise delivery. Especially as De la Osa lets loose with a raunchy incendiary bad girl persona on “Ride On!”

“Stranger in the Alps,” is good but too Electric Light Orchestra in tradition. A fun percussive romp.

This is what R&R should be.

Highlights – “The Comeback Kid,” “Mediation for the Household,” “Morning Moon,” “The Origin of the Hourglass is Unclear,” “Ride On!” & “Apollo.”

Musicians – Charles Murphy (bass/bgv/percussion/keys) & Chris Jago (drums/percussion/bgv) with Alanah Ntzouras Maguire (sax/flute/percussion/bgv), Vanessa Acosta (trumpet/percussion) & Vicious Jago (speech on “Stoned Ape”), the Vicious Tabernacle Choir of Los Angeles (bgv) & Stevie Ray Hernandez (percussion).

Color photo courtesy of Tammie Valer. The 35-minute CD @ Bandcamp —

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