More brilliant singer-songwriter fare! Can you sense a trend here? Ok, I’ll post a hard rocker soon and some ‘lectronica BUT! First, you gotta hear this sweeeeet song by Tony Furtado. “You are asking me to live on dreams alone” he testifies, in this heart-melting folky-rock original. A gentle finger-picking guitar pattern sets the stage for a plaintiff single tracked vocal brought home by a swooping double tracked chorus. A perfect rainy day disc, though it leaves you feeling hopeful, and looking forward to sunny days ahead.
“Dreams Alone” (download mp3)
from “Deep Water”
“Dreams Alone” (play)
Here’s a gr8 new original song from Jude Johnstone. In popular music these days, quality songcraft is often missing, replaced by hype or simple laziness. In most classic songs, every line supports the title, making the thought come across crystal clear in one listen, only to grow and gain depth over time. Reminiscent of Lucinda Williams and Emmylou Harris (Harris actually sings backup on this track) Johnstone is a real-deal songwriter, as evidenced by the many songs she’s had covered by major artists. This track is warm, expressive, and effortless. Old school top shelf work, hot off the presses.
“Quiet Girl” (download mp3)
from “Quiet Girl”
“Quiet Girl” (play)
This track is really pleasing to listen to. Reminiscent of Sufjan Stevens, with softly plucked guitars and gently murmured vocals, and endearing and thoughtful lyrics. Delicate, peaceful and enchanting, it’s a perfect soundtrack for this overcast and stormy day. A really great listen with headphones. I can easily float away on this.
“Rowboat” (download mp3)
from “Songs for Boats”
Takin’ it back in tha Wayback Machine with this vintage gem recorded by Alan Lomax. To know recorded American roots music is to know Alan Lomax’s singular legacy, and to not know it is to be missing out on some of life’s gr8 treasures. Here’s Fred McDowell layin’ it down for real. A man, his steel guitar, his voice and inner rhythm. 100% legit.
“Woke Up This Morning” (download mp3)
from “I’ll Be So Glad When the Sun Goes Down: Alan Lomax’s “Southern Journey, “1959-1960”
“Woke Up This Morning” (play)
Need s’more o’ that good stuff!
This is a really great listen. The vocals of Kyle Kersten bring me back to Ryan Adams’ “Heartbreaker” record – where he sings beautiful, heart-wrenching duets with the female vocal-stylings of Emmylou Harris. The added touch of the synth-like sounds here, make this a dreamy, relaxing number. Kersten’s alt-country voice and the pedal steel hooked me into this from the start. Beautiful song.
“Distance” (download mp3)
(Yer Bird Records)
Here’s a sweet track from Wellington based Fly My Pretties. Spawned by Black Seeds’ singer Barnaby Weir and a small truckload of talented New Zealand musicians, this recording is the result of a five night run at the Bats Theater. A slew of new material was debuted, and “Singing In My Soul” is one of the highlights. I love the smooth and tasty guitar solo half way through, and the vocal harmonies are beautiful.
Fly My Pretties
“Singing In My Soul” (download mp3)
from “Live at Bats”
“Singing in my Soul” (play)
What would a band from landlocked Tennessee know about deep sea diving? Enough to know about loneliness, darkness, cold, and the obsession to go deeper. A simple, sparse arrangement sets the stage for this glimpse into the psyche of an adventurer who rushes toward the unknown while swimming ever farther from the realities of life above the surface.
Spider + Octopus
“Deep Sea Diver” (download mp3)
(Big Rig Records)
“Deep Sea Diver” (play)
Don’t just call it Gypsy — it’s Roma. It’s Greek. It’s Balkan. Whatever it is, Parne Gadje mix seemingly disparate European folk styles with traditional and self-made instruments to create a gorgeous, organic mood. I’m not sure what “Isoun Mia Vrisi” is even about, but it doesn’t even matter when the music speaks that language we all just understand. Merry Xmas everyone. <3
“Isoun Mia Vrisi” (Download mp3)
from “O ManuÅ¡”
“Isoun Mia Vrisi” (play)
This track brings a sweet and original sounding female vocal to the front with a gorgeous arrangement of strings, piano and drums. It’s emo at its happiest! Sad and dark, yet intense and engaging with a glimmering light that shines throughout. I love it.
Dedicated To Dedications
“Strange Neighborhood” (download mp3)
from “Emo Diaries – Chapter Twelve – I Love You But In The End I Will Destroy You”
“Strange Neighborhood” (play)
Simple acoustic guitar and some slinky slide propel Harry Manx toward his home. A sweet and sincere ode to “home” and we aint talkin’ about a house! Old school gr8 music, played by a human. Fancy that.
“Brick And Stone” (download mp3)
from “Dog My Cat”
(Dog My Cat Records)
“Brick And Stone” (play)
I WANT MORE!