Artist: Tokyo Rosenthal
Label: Rock & Sock Records
Release Date: 08/01/2015
North Carolina’s Tokyo Rosenthal draws from Americana, traditional country tunes and a hint of folksy sing-along. Personally, his lyrics and sound remind me of such greats as Elvis, Conway Twitty and early Springsteen. “The Cold War” and “Back Stage Hotel” are back to back stand out tracks that especially highlight those comparisons. In essence, Rosenthal sings about real life. The whole album exemplifies this, but “What Would Have Happened” is a particular standout. What Rosenthal expresses isn’t always happy, but the tradeoff is that it’s truthful and relatable in some form to any listener.
Rosenthal is currently on tour in Ireland, Scotland and the UK, where the crowd will no doubt enjoy the sound and instrumentation on this album. Many songs, like “Love’s Hurtin’ Real Bad,” could be performed comfortably at a pub, with nothing more than a few musicians backing Rosenthal’s vocals on fiddle or harps. His talent and songs are worth raising a glass to- either in praise or toasting to something you already know all too well, being expressed perfectly by Rosenthal in his lyrics on Afterlife.