February 2013 - It Rock And Roll
 

Month: February 2013

lucLucinda Williams is really an ideal candidate for Hear Music’s Artist’s Choice, and this collection has to be one of the strongest in the entire series. In her own work, Williams offers a winning and sometimes complex combination of passion, perfectionist tendencies, and poetic intelligence. Similarly, her 16 eclectic choices on this disc provide the same overall balance of wit, charm, craft, and passion, with different qualities predominating from song to song and artist to artist. While many of the participants in the Artist’s Choice series choose to reintroduce us to old standards which were a part of their early creative development, Williams brings a connoisseur’s ear to her assignment, and while she pays homage to a few artist from earlier decades, she selects nothing prior to the ’60s (with the exception of Chet Baker’s version of “My Funny Valentine,” which she heard in her parents’ home when she was growing up). Many of her choices come from recordings of the last five to six years. Better yet, none of them are obvious or predictable.

Tracks:
01. The Band – It Makes No Difference
02. Paul Westerberg – Good Day
03. Patty Griffin – Mary
04. Anne McCue – These Things
05. Tex Perkins – To Us
06. Gregg Allman – These Days
07. Yo La Tengo – Tears Are in Your Eyes
08. Leonard Cohen – Famous Blue Raincoat
09. Nina Simone – Don’t Explain
10. John Coltrane ‎ – Say It (Over and Over Again)
11. Ryan Adams – Sylvia Plath
12. Chuck Prophet – No Other Love
13. Judy Collins – La Chanson des Vieux Amants
14. Ron Sexsmith – April After All
15. Chet Baker – My Funny Valentine
16. Joгo Gilberto – Eclipse

mp3 320 kbps | 131 MB | UL | CL

alcoaLead vocalist and solo artist for Alcoa is no stranger to the limelight and the music scene; Derek Archambault has spent the last four years touring with his punk/progressive hardcore band Defeater. But with the decision to finally record this full length album, it really showcases his talents as a songwriter and performer as well and lets him finally get these songs out for people to hear.The album has some great sounding intricate songs like ‘Rilke’, ‘Lucky Me’ and ‘Family Tree’ all utilising every sound aspect of the whole album. As acoustic guitars power through, lap guitars add a different feel, lead guitars add more layers and the slow emotive voice of Derek, all of which blends well and works together. The country style feel to all of these songs really shine through and show off the Tennessee musical style. Slower songs like ‘Cab Rides and Cigarettes’ and ‘Whiskey and Wine’ let Derek show off his lyrical skills as he sings “I heal my wounds with whiskey and wine” showing off his emotional and vulnerable side.It’s a great album and from what I hear on this album a lot of Derek’s fans who follow his band Defeater will be certainly impressed by this effort. With the sound of a soothing voice with an acoustic guitar, lap guitar and banjo, he utilises all the aspects and brings together some great sounding songs. For any fans of Defeater, Frank Turner or The Gaslight Anthem then you should check this out as you’ll certainly be impressed.

mp3 320 kbps | 110 MB | UL | CL

ESAThe ten tracks on the album are a mix of pure power pop and some rather beautiful slower paced numbers, Esa delivers both equally well with plenty of melodies and harmonies present in the proceedings, there is even a little darkness within too, for example on the track “Meat Market,” which has a kind of early Pink Floyd sound to it.

mp3 320 kbps | 87 MB | UL

noSpend an hour with Norah Jones’ record collection. We caught up with Norah Jones in New York City where she took some time to sit down and talk to us about the musical influences in her life – the songs she heard in the car when she was a kid, the importance of Ray Charles, and why she loves the sound of Levon Helm’s voice.

Tracks:
01. What Would I Do Without You – Ray Charles
02. What A Little Moonlight Can Do – Billie Holiday
03. I Love You More Than You’ll Ever Know – Donny Hathaway
04. The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down – The Band
05. Can I Sleep In Your Arms – Willie Nelson
06. I Still Miss Someone – Johnny Cash
07. Fruits Of My Labor – Lucinda Williams
08. I Just Want To Make Love To You – Etta James
09. Today I Sing The Blues – Aretha Franklin
10. Slick Chick (On The Mellow Side) – Dinah Washington
11. Whatever Lola Wants (Lola Gets) – Sarah Vaughan
12. I Want A Little Sugar In My Bowl – Nina Simone
13. Lovesick Blues – Hank Williams
14. Dear Someone – Gillian Welch

mp3 320 kbps | 103 MB | UL | CL

kiKicca – vocals, tambourine, hand claps, background vocals
Oscar Marchioni – Fender Rhodes piano, triangle, hand claps, background vocals
Salah Khaili – drums, background vocals
Herve Samb – electric guitar
Bertrand Luzignant – trumpet, trombone
Cedric Ricard – tenor saxophone

mp3 320 kbps | 113 MB | UL | CL

donoNew Orleans based Donovan Wolfington are debuting their first full length record, “Stop Breathing” coming Spring 2013. The record features 32 minutes of angst-filled, nostalgic punk and emo with a dash of 90’s rock spread across 10 blistering new tracks, presenting a sound that is the perfect blend of throwback loyalty and forward thinking ingenuity. Stop Breathing updates and expands upon the sound laid forth on earlier recordings, and reflects the members’ struggles and successes with growing up and leaving home, all while trying to make a rock record they can be proud of.

mp3 VBR~267 kbps | 62 MB | UL | CL

HSin City Soul and Blues Festival artist Ruthie Foster can be credited with bringing Hadden Sayers out of retirement. Sayers, a successful musician in the Houston area with a lot of promise, was burnt out on the music scene after a string of deals gone bad and the overall erosion of the business. After much soul searching, some unlikely friendships and inspirations along with a call from Foster found the bluesman back writing songs. Sayers and Foster shared a love of blues, Tejano, country, soul, gospel, and reggae music and he found himself in Foster’s touring band. In 2011 Sayers released his first album in many years, Hard Dollar, to rave reviews. The buzz was back, as Sayers was nominated in 2012 for Best Song at the Blues Music Awards. That song “Back to the Blues”, a duet and co-write with Foster, soulfully announced his return. Hadden will follow up Hard Dollar with Rolling Soul on February 26th, 2013. Early reviews are hailing it successful follow with much focus on Sayers strong songwriting.

mp3 320 kbps | 104 MB | UL | CL

bigTracks:

01. Honeysuckle Rose (2:47)
02. Love Me (2:41)
03. Ain’t Misbehavin’ (3:28)
04. Sweet Georgia Brown (4:28)
05. Rosetta (2:42)
06. I’m Crazy ’bout My Baby (3:11)
07. I’m In A World Of Trouble (7:25)
08. Ready For The River (3:06)
09. Isn’t It Romantic (3:03)
10. No Idea (3:41)
11. Feel So Fine (3:23)
12. Too Late, Too Late (9:36)
13. Smashing Thirds (2:40)
14. Joe’s Blues (3:12)
15. I’ve Found A New Baby (3:12)
16. Sunday Girl (2:59)
17. Roll ’em Pete (7:20)
18. Tea For Two (2:53)
19. I Want A Little Girl (3:17)
20. Honey Hush (3:20)

mp3 320 kbps | 188 MB | UL

chrAn impressive and fiery Texas blues guitarist, Chris Duarte’s latest album, My Soul Alone, was recorded at Prairie Sun Studios in Cotati, California with Aaron Haggerty on drums and Steve Evans on bass; Mads Tolling adds violin on one track (the final cut, “Carelessness”). Earlier in his career, Duarte was often compared to fellow Texas guitarist Stevie Ray Vaughan, and Johnny Winter’s name was tossed around, as well, but Duarte has been at this professional blues thing for a couple of decades now, and while he quite likely will never escape the Vaughan/Winter cul du sac, it’s obvious at this point that he has his own varied spin on the whole modern Texas blues thing, spicing it up with, at times, a jazz feel, and he even pushes into light psychedelia now and then. This newest release doesn’t break much new ground on that template, but it does spotlight Duarte’s songwriting (he wrote each of the dozen tracks here), and his guitar work shines like it always does. Highlights include the upbeat and almost pop “Yes, It’s You,” the slow blues “A Dollar Down and Feeling Low,” the smooth and flowing “Blue Jean Outlaw,” and the set closer, the edgy and almost eerie “Carelessness.”

mp3 320 kbps | 220 MB | UL

CRITracks:

01. Alice no Pais dos Matraquilhos
02. Lenço da Carolina
03. Branca Aurora
04. Deolinda
05. Construção
06. Miriam
07. Cherokee Louise
08. Cândida
09. Palhaço e Ministro
10. Cidadão de Frente para a Cidade (Bizarro)
11. Petição do Farias para Alegria de Ministros e Catedráticos
12. Desempregado com Filhos
13. Lembras-te da nossa Rua (Fado da Defesa)

mp3 VBR~213 kbps | 76 MB | UL | CL

BENThe overlapping layers of symbology on Benoit Pioulard’s latest disc, Hymnal, shroud everything in an Earl Grey mystic fog. First, though the project title scans as a name, it’s a nom de guerre for American-born London resident Thomas Meluch. Though retained as signposts more than religious initiations, the disc is filled with Catholic ritual references. Plus, the album cover depicts a tree on the estate of poet Edward James, being consumed by black fungus. With some help from Kranky labelmate Felix on string arrangements and ambient whiz Kyle Bobby Dunn on guitar, Meluch swims through a deep sea, at turns surreal folk, mythic ambiance, and organic fade.
Blurred lines are essential to Hymnal, both musically and lyrically. The graveyard two-step of “Reliquary” creaks and rattles, layers of hissing tape, alt percussion, and floating strings bobbing to the top. “I can feel the features of my visage,” Meluch croons, though he adds that “it’s as though they were yours,” the difference of subject and object as murky as the music. Though the title “Gospel” suggests verbal revelation, the six-minute instrumental drone that ensues instead creates a portal to some wild heaven, birds chirping, and organs glistening. Meluch’s use of religious terminology is enough to set the stage for deep, connective experiences, but the music’s poetic depth.

mp3 320 kbps | 99 MB | UL | CL

redWhile Someone Else’s Cake is only the third album in as many years from Seattle quartet Red Jacket Mine, they already sound like they’ve been on the block for quite some time. Maybe it’s songwriter Lincoln Barr’s old soul lyrics, which manage to be intricate, smart, and casual at the same time, or maybe it’s their breezy sound, built on a foundation of slick ’70s pop influences but branching out into more updated styles almost accidentally. More likely, it’s the masterful assembly of all these influences, motivations, and intentions into a streamlined final product that sounds so cool and self-assured there’s no chance it was made by some bunch of new kids. Starting with the peppy album-opener “Amy,” Red Jacket Mine dip deep into their bag of tricks for a hook-heavy three-minute blast of power pop with dabs of Elvis Costello-style organ, the lighthearted storytelling voice of Squeeze, and the summery instrumentation of Nick Lowe’s most upbeat tunes. Tracks like “Nickel & Dime” and “Skint City” tap into the world-weary-but-grinning perspective of Warren Zevon, or even more so, Steely Dan’s plastic bohemian sheen. The bleaty horn section and crunchy glam boogie guitar shuffle on “Engineer” all but quote “Bang a Gong” without rewriting the song. Much like 2010s contemporaries Ted Leo and Spoon, Red Jacket Mine marry their vast playlist of influences to their own songwriting approach, coming off not as plagiarists, but more as enormous music nerds who actually have something to add to their jumping-off points. This is evidenced by the over the top traditional country number “Have You Got a Permit to Preach on this Corner?,” a track that sounds like something the Byrds left on the cutting room floor circa Sweetheart of the Rodeo. The track offers a break from the pop and highlights how deeply the band considered the songwriting, consistency, and flow of the album. Drawing on the past but building something new from the components, Someone Else’s Cake ends up being as developed, thoughtful, and satisfying as it seems at first glance. For a band not too many years into it, Red Jacket Mine have funneled a lifetime’s worth of spring afternoons listening to records into 11 cleanly polished and highly varied slices of pop music magic.

mp3 VBR~247 kbps | 61 MB | UL

JSonically, The Happiness Waltz takes a trip back into Rouse’s early-2000’s period, a time when so many of his longtime fans really came on board. A number of the new tracks could easily find a home on the AM radio of the late 1970’s, nestled between some of the biggest songs of the day. Lyrically, The Happiness Waltz is very much an album in the present, featuring some of Rouse’s most personal songs to date. Rouse reunites with producer Brad Jones, who produced and engineered two of his most beloved albums, 1972 (2003) and Nashville (2005). The Happiness Waltz was recorded in Valencia, Spain at Josh’s studio Rio Bravo; with overdubs and mixing completed at Alex The Great in Nashville, TN.

mp3 320 kbps | 139 MB | UL | CL

HEHeidi Talbot was born in Ireland, became a folk star in the USA as a member of the Irish-American band Cherish the Ladies, and now lives in Scotland, where she is married to the celebrated fiddler and multi-instrumentalist John McCusker. With a background like that, it’s hardly surprising she should develop a style that switches easily between Celtic and Americana, especially as her remarkable backing band includes many of the cast of the Transatlantic Sessions. The 15 other instrumentalists and six other singers include American country and bluegrass heroes Jerry Douglas and Tim O’Brien, Mark Knopfler, and Scottish stars Karine Polwart, King Creosote and Julie Fowlis. Yet Talbot effortlessly dominates the set, with new songs co‑written with different band members, from the unashamedly emotional The Loneliest, to the charming Celtic swirl of The New Cajun Waltz and the fiddle, guitar and dobro-backed country weepie When the Roses Come Again. Exquisite.

mp3 320 kbps | 107 MB | UL | CL

LOTTELotte Kestner is the solo project of Trespassers William vocalist Anna-Lynne Williams. The Bluebird Of Happiness was recorded over the course of a year by Williams in a handful of bedrooms, as she transported her home studio from a number of locations around Seattle and nearby island Vashon. While retaining the delicate, intimate sound of her debut album, China Mountain, there are a handful of notable guest appearances on this new work. Damien Jurado duets on “Turn the Wolves”, Arnar Gudjonsson of Icelandic band Leaves accompanies on piano on “Pairs,” and Anomie Belle contributes violins to “Cliff.”

mp3 320 kbps | 113 MB | UL

 sonSon Volt, to release their first album in four years, Honky Tonk, on Rounder Records. The follow-up to 2009’s American Central Dust, Honky Tonk showcases a more acoustic- based side of Son Volt, in the tradition of classic Bakersfield honky tonk music.Farrar credits his time jamming on pedal steel with St. Louis band Colonel Ford with inspiring him to explore honky tonk music. But Farrar says this album is far from a nostalgia trip.“I wanted these songs to sound more contemporary and modern,” Farrar says. “There was no strict adherence to methodology of the past.”Instead Farrar says the band will explore the same lyrical vein they explored in American Central Dust.“Honky tonk music is about heartache, heartbreak, the road,” Farrar says. “I was always averse to using certain words in songs, including ‘love’ and ‘heart.’ But I started using them on American Central Dust, and now I guess the floodgates have opened.”

mp3 320 kbps | 87 MB | UL | CL

SHOThe Shotgun Brothers Band is a unique blend of musical styles and sounds. Ranging from hard-driving, Bluegrass-inspired Rock, to Psychedelic electric instrumentation, to Vocal and lyric driven Americana, and everything between. There’s a certain nod the pioneers of jamming, the Grateful Dead, but swirled together with so many different influences, that nearly every song falls into it’s own genre. More than anything, the Shotgun Brothers Band is about having fun and interacting with each other and the audience.

mp3 320 kbps | 131 MB | UL | CL

pphMuchacho, which arrives March 19 via Dead Oceans, is said to feature some of the same country rock vibes from his 2010 set Here’s to Taking it Easy, but a press release says the album also “strikes out into more adventurous waters via rhythm and electronic textures.” The song cycle apparently came out of a domestic crisis at the beginning of 2012 that forced him to seek out a new home/studio in the dead of winter. With song ideas forming in his head, Houck took the opportunity to get out of the cold and booked a ticket to sunny Mexico.

mp3 320 kbps | 128 MB | UL |CL

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