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"NeuFutur Magazine - MojoRising EP review"

Mojo Rising – Feel What You Feel (CD)
Posted by James on September 12th, 2009 No Comments Printer-Friendly

“She Woke Up To Me” has an utterly infectious sound, with a bit of synthesizers that will worm its way into listeners’ ears and reside there for months after listening to the track. The inclusion of a similarly-infectious drum line and jangly, disco-infused guitar line further elevate this track into something special. All of these pieces unite together to create the perfect foil for the soulful singing that links together Maroon 5, the Bee Gees, and even Rob Thomas in the course of a few minutes.

“Walk Away” moves away from some of the disco influence, having the band instead create a rich soul experience that will even put mainstay acts like Blues Traveler and Dave Matthews Band on attention. “Walk Away” succeeds because Mojo Rising is able to craft a larger than life feel for the track, ensuring that listeners completely involve themselves in the track. “Sooth Me and Use Me” is another great track, using a skillful trifecta of guitars, drums, and synthesizers to create a sound that bridges the seventies and today; I can definitely see these guys doing a hell of a job on the college scene. While there is a more laid-back sound during “Touch”, one need only listen to all that is going on in the track to see that the band continues to step up their game. Make sure to see how each piece interacts with the others on the track; what may seem like a simple guitar line is transformed into so much more when it is acted upon by the vocals and drums, for example. “Maybe In Another Life” is something that showcases what I feel to be Mojo Rising’s later sound.

Where the act had cut a string of tremendous tracks in their own unique style, I feel that subsequent releases will act much like a study for the band, with each track giving Mojo Rising opportunity to showcase their craft. “Feel What You Feel” is a blueprint for what bands should do with their EPs. Where it seems like now that the EP form is largely seen as a way to push a single through the inclusion of rarities or B-sides, Mojo Rising is able to distill down their sound to the space of five cuts and give listeners a number of reasons to salivate over any subsequent recordings that the boys may bash out.

Top Track: She Woke Up To Me

Rating: 8.1/10 - NeuFutur Magazine

"MojoRising gig review Fri July 31st @ Miss Libertine"

w/ National Airlines, She Said Yes

Friday, July 31 2009 @ Miss Libertine, Melbourne

Looks like word is getting out about Melbourne funk duo MojoRising as they filled Miss Libertines last Friday night. National Airlines kicked off the night with a somewhat dismal turn out. Participating bands showed good etiquette and took the time to check them out, but nothing much else can be said for attendance. They put on a very synth driven electro act, but it lacked depth without the presence of a drummer.

Following on was She Said Yes (ex -Bachelor Girl). Their electro pop vibe and Tania Doko’s outstanding vocal got the crowd in their groove as it slowly grew in size. As their set drew to a close, the room was nearing capacity and was buzzing with anticipation. It seemed the crowd was just itching to dance.

MojoRising hadn’t even been on stage for a whole minute and everyone was already pulling out their best dance moves. After opening with Touch off their debut EP Feel What You Feel, they showcased three new songs. The unfamiliarity didn’t deter punters from getting into the Stevie Wonder come INXS vibe that was on offer. Drummer, Dan Angelini, launched into a drum solo that sent the crowd into a dancing frenzy before playing Walk Away which included a brilliant piece of Harmonica courtesy of front man Jozsef James.

With the end in sight, the funk duo closed their set with Soothe Me and Use Me and their single She Woke Up To Me. It is clear that everyone is catching onto the funky-ass, riff driven beats and tunes that are MojoRising. Packing a venue on a Saturday night in Melbourne is a testament to their hard works. Big things are still to come from these guys. -

"Skope Magazine EP review"

Mojo Rising has taken the land down under by storm as they now set out to take over the states. Making the move from their home-land of Australia to the sunset strip of Los Angeles hopes to be a beneficial one for the band. They hope to create a brand new fan-base by making the trip to the land of Hollywood hoop-la. By exposing & introducing Mojo Rising and their music to the states means opportunities galore for this group. Originally a 5-member-band, Mojo Rising is now made up of just two members: Jozsef James on vocals, keys and harmonica and Daniel Angelini on drums, sampler and percussion. The band title actually comes from one of their major musical influences, The Doors. This comes during a line in “L.A. Woman” where the masterful Jim Morrison feels the “mojo rising!” Mojo Rising also pays homage to another one of their favorite bands INXS as being a major inspiration toward them as musicians/artists. With over 150 live shows performed over the last three years, these two band-mates are hoping to hit some hot spots like: The Whisky Go Go (where the legendary Doors once played along with many other talents) & Viper Room just to name a few.

What blows me away is the amazingly powerful sound that is created by just two men. Mojo Rising are mixing an eclectic array of styles together such as: dance, rock, funk, pop, soul, electronic and even a little blues. The songwriting is a focal point for these musicians as James likes to call it “very cathartic and healing, an expression for him”. Feel What You Feel is exactly that as the message is loud & clear: enjoy the feel-good music and just forget about life for awhile. The songs will make you move, but will also move you at the same time.

The five-song debut EP starts up with a number titled “She woke up to me” that comes with a very funky, electronic dance beat mixed to some cool, soulful and passionate singing by Jozsef. This song was grooving along wonderfully and I simply loved the funky dance feel here! Next up, “Touch”, is more of a pop/rock-oriented song with still some elements of funk thrown in for good measure. On the third track, “Walk Away”, you get a suave, almost bluesy-like vibe that makes for one cool, finger-snappin’ jam. The harmonica and keyboard add that extra special something on this one as well. “Soothe me & use me” is simply just rockin’ away as Jozsef and Daniel jam the hell out of this set. The final installment on Feel What You Feel, “Maybe in another life”, is the most compelling out of all five songs from a singer-standpoint. James is getting in touch with himself & the listening audience here where all emotions are being poured out. Stirring up ear-pleasing vocals, Jozsef James is really feeling it here from all levels. What a finish and the best part is that I didn’t even see it coming!

Mojo Rising realize that coming from another country to play in the U.S. might not be an easy transition right away, but these strong musicians are prepared to grab the bull by the horns and accept the challenge. James says it best here: “It’s a dog eat dog world in the music industry and you can expect that in any country you go to.” There is only one thing that matters for Mojo Rising and that is “if I can make other people feel good because of a lyric, a melody or a beat then I feel like I have given something back,” (Jozsef James). I couldn’t have said it better myself, here’s to you Mojo Rising! For more on Mojo Rising and their diversified new release, Feel What You Feel, SKOPE out

Rating: 5/5 - Skope Magazine

"Feel What You Feel EP review - FAME REVIEW"

This EP, with the core named after one of Jim Morrison's more popular plays on words, is a rock-groove-funk duo with accompanists lending propulsive backing to a jumping set of tunes. Jozsef James is the chief writer, singer, and keyboardist flanked by percussionist Daniel Angelini, the two rolling through a foursome of danceable rhythms catchably based in jazz, MOR, beats, soul, and rock in a refreshing modernist setting.

Add in the Lee Ritenourish Luke Finn on guitar (especially that suh-weeeet solo in She Woke Up to Me) and a bunch of others psycho-cybernetically keyed into the Prince cum Steely Dan cum Crusaders cum Frankie Goes to Hollywood cum Simply Red vibe, and you have a polished disc brimming over with verve. And, don't tell anyone, but James toots a cool harmonica as well. I also catch a bit of Hall & Oates in the guy's singing, with Angelini accenting the sonorities adeptly. More, the boys handled the production end and located a savvy set of hands, Chris Braun, for the engineering.

These cats hail from Australia and are now in SoCal, trying their luck in the glamour capitol of the world. With this CD as a start, that's not a bad move at all. They had half the competition beat before even stepping foot on shore. Now, with one Hermosa Beach, Calif., date already behind 'em, the Whiskey A Go Go will host their second appearance. I know long-established acts that couldn't secure that kind of slate! Thus, all with all, you have a pretty good idea of the quality of this new groove unit; watch for 'em.
Track List:

* She Woke Up to Me (Jozsef James)
* Touch (Jozsef James)
* Walk Away (James / Finn)
* Maybe in Another Life (Jozsef James)

Edited by: David N. Pyles
- Fame Review

"MojoRising EP review - The CD Reviewer"

Artist: MojoRising
Title: Feel What You Feel EP
Style: Rock/ Dance
Rating: 8.5 out of 10
By C.W. Ross

Band Lineup: Jozsef James (vocals, keys, harmonica), and Daniel Angelini (Drums, sampler, percussion).

This Australian band has made the decision to leave their homeland and cross the ocean to Los Angeles, California to continue their music dreams. The band has always had a dream of playing at many of the infamous clubs found in the L.A. area.

MojoRising started out as a 5 piece-unit but the group has been whittled down now to its current core of just two members.

The band plays music that's all about having fun and getting you up and dancing. The 5 songs found on this EP are about living your own life and not letting yourself fall into a life doing things that you don't want to do just so you can be part of the mainstream. The band says that their songs are meant mainly to, 'make the listener feel good and to help people forget about their worries for awhile.'

The band's name comes from a line found in The Doors' well known song, "L.A. Women." The band list Doors' front man Jim Morrison as one of their main musical influences. Another big musical influence for the band is the group INXS. They had the opportunity to perform at a memorial concert held in 2007 that marked the ten year anniversary of INXS front man Michael Hutchence's death. You can definitely hear the influence of INXS in their music.

"She Woke Up To Me," gets things off to a strong start with its up-tempo dance/rock vibe. This song also happens to be the first single released from the EP.

"Touch" is a mid-tempo song that is filled with lyrics about lusting after a woman.

"Walk Away," is a mixture of blues, rock and funk. This song is fueled by its blues harmonica and funky organ parts.

"Soothe Me & Use Me," features some rocking organ music along with a nice rock guitar solo also found on it.

"Maybe In Another Life," is the one ballad that's found on this EP. The song does a nice job of wrapping things up on a high note. The song is filled with passionate vocals dealing with missing a loved one from a past relationship and dreaming about being back with them again.

I liked the music that MojoRising offered up on their, Feel What You Feel EP, and think that the band should be able to have success in the U.S. music market. - The CD Reviewer

"Music Emissions - MojoRising review"

Mojorising are comprised of only two Australian gents, both doing some mad multitasking to contribute all the parts of their debut EP - JJ hands the vocals, 'wall of sound', keys and harmonica and Dan is tasked with the drums, percussion and sampler. Despite this odd-sounding mix of techniques, Mojorising are in fact not an electro band - they sound more like the love child of Def Leppard and INXS raised by the Cab Calloway.

Their first 5-track EP is a good listen for a number of reasons. First off, the sound is rounded and good to listen to, always a good start, but it spans quite a few different techniques in the process. There are elements of classic rock and blues pervading throughout but also touches that betray their electro approach to production - 'She Woke Up To Me' in particular starts off with twangy electronic notes, like a dance club anthem.

'Maybe In Another Life' is much more rock-ballad-y, the Def Leppard is clear on the ears here, but it's a nice nod, not blatant plagarism. 'Sooth Me And Use Me' goes further into the blues sound with harmonica and classy guitar work, and despite the poor lyrics (actually, none of the lyrics are great) it hits a nice chord. Pardon the pun.

Mojorising have clearly mastered their very unique methodology, and it's working very well for them - the EP is immaculately produced and well mastered but I think it's the substance that needs work here, not the presentation. The lyrics are a letdown, but the music is original and pleasant, and I hope it will go upwards from here on in. - Music Emissions

"ROCK FOR RELIEF - MojoRising review"

ROCK FOR RELIEF - benefit concert for the Victorian Bushfire @ The Espy Gershwin Room - Saturday March 21st 2009

Mojo Rising came next. They were an inspired choice on the part of whoever decided to get them to play (Chloe?). They play a hard edged funk sound which provided a welcome change of pace and was immediately attention grabbing. Their vocalist is blessed with a perfect voice for the music they play. Being that Funk is not my usual sphere, it’s a little hard to give a comparison, however think the funkier Rolling Stones songs (Sex Drive, Anybody Seen My Baby type thing), might be close to the mark. - Patrick Hawke


Feel What You Feel EP - released 2009 (independent)



MOJORISING: an eclectic duo fusing elements of pop, soul and funk, hailing from Melbourne Australia (currently based in Los Angeles). The self-proclaimed beat-scientists experiment with sounds, beats and technology to create their band. Think: samplers, backing tracks, effects pedals and keyboards to create an engaging and enthralling live show. But don’t think that means electro! It can be more closely aligned with the doings of INXS, Jamiroquai and Muse. Their purpose is to create original music, fusing eclectic flavours and powerful lyrics to make you feel the music, inside and out. At their shows… no one ever knows what to expect! The result: a mash of dance floor rock, soul and funky-ass riff ridden tunes.

MOJORISING recorded their debut EP at Sing Sing Studios in Melbourne, Australia capturing their infectious, yet soulful sound. Their debut received an overwhelming response from fans and radio stations, including airplay in North America and Europe.

“There’s a burning desire for us to create something fresh and totally original. We want to be innovative and modern with our approach to music and live performances. There is a special musical chemistry between us; we work hard, and we stay true to our dreams” says JJ.

Having delivered many shows across Australia through rigorous touring the boys will relocate to Los Angeles October 16th 2009 to further increase exposure of their 'brand' of music and give the world something they have been waiting for.