Title - 'Tokyo's Fifth' (Rock & Sock Records)
Artist - Tokyo Rosenthal
In a career that started with the country rock boom, Tokyo Rosenthal has honed his craft and "Rootsy/ Americana with a little blues thrown in" sound to perfection.
His move to Chapel Hill, North Carolina allowed him to team up with the famed producer and recording star Chris Stamey in the studio. But prior to that Rosenthal made his reputation while living in Rhode Island, New York, and Los Angeles.
He headed such groups as the legendary Harpo and Slapshot and Treo Gato as well as his solo endeavors. This has helped him receive radio airplay in the U.S. and Canada, and radio stations in the UK and Europe are spinning Tokyo as well.
In 2008 Rosenthal released a new CD entitled Love Won Out that featured the single 'St. Patrick’s Day,' to critical acclaim. This CD broke Tokyo into the Americana charts. He began 2009 with the release of the timely and moving single, 'Mister Tell Me ‘Bout The Great Depression.' He then played all over North Carolina whilst recording his next album, Ghosts, that was released in January 2010. "Ghosts", reached #5 on the Euro Americana Chart and the critical acclaim and US airplay was overwhelming.
He began 2011 with a West Coast tour and the much anticipated release of his fourth studio album, Who Was That Man? happened on May 1st. Joined once again by Chris Stamey on bass and production, Tokyo's new tunes grabbed Americana fans the world over as it reached # 5 on both the FAR Chart and the Alternate Roots Chart as well as #8 on the Euro Americana Chart. 2012 was busy both on the touring front and recording.
Finally, he has returned to the studio to record Tokyo's Fifth. The early released single and video, 'What Did I Used To Be?' (which is included on this album as a video) went "mini-viral" as Toke once again took on sensitive political and social topics.
The first song is solid in 'This Ship Will Sail,' a true crusty sailor-inspired song that will have you gently rockin' on invisible high seas for sure! That's backed by the storytelling of 'Waste of a Heart,' the fast-paced fun of 'Mulberry Place,' and then the Buffett-ish vibe of 'What Did I Used to Be?'
The accordian-backed 'The Immigrant' is one of the best tracks on the album. Complete with all manner of instruments it's a true highlight of Latino rhythms. Up next is his by-the-numbers version of 'Helter Skelter,' before the deep storytelling comes back on 'Killaloe.'
Rounding out the album is the piano and Spanish guitar-fused 'Smoke and Mirrors,' before the stoic 'We Put You Down' and finally the beautiful 'Thank You, You're Beautiful.' A song that truly encapsulates the spirit of this album and what Tokyo set out to do (and succeeded in doing) just perfectly.