We've got lots of new music here and lots more coming in the near future including Sam Phillips latest release (more on that very soon). Meanwhile check out The Promise and enjoy music from the Juno Soundtrack, Nick Lowe, Sia, Paul Thorn, Steve Poltz, Herbie Handcock, Glann HAnsard and Marketa Irglova, The Missiles of October, Josh Ritter, Cat Power, Shelby Lynne, Allison Moorer, Bob Schneider, Carolyn Wonderland, Sean Costello and Shauna Burns.
Shauna Burns - The Moon and The Fire Circle (2008)
Somewhere between Sarah and Kate rides Shauna Burns. With her ethereal voice, spacious arrangements and lots of piano, you can't help but become enchanted with "The Moon and The Fire Circle". Throw in some cello and other interesting strings and you have an album that will let you float away. If you love Sarah or Tori or even Kate, you should really check out this beautiful CD. http://www.shaunaburns.com or http://myspace.com/shaunaburns .
Sean Costello - We Can Get Together (2008)
This is classic blues rock with mighty strong guitar hooks complimented by at times raspy and always engaging vocals. You would think that after all these years blues rock would get predictable and boring, but Sean gives so much of himself to this CD that the music almost transcends the genre making it fresh and exciting. But forget all of that. Try and listen without tapping your foot or playing air guitar. I dare you. http://www.seancostello.com or http://myspace.com/seancostello
Carolyn Wonderland - Miss Understood (2008)
I first saw Carolyn in a small BBQ restaurant in Austin. There was barely a stage there and it was just her and another woman. When she opened her mouth you could feel the passion in this woman. Then when she started playing some slide guitar leads you knew it was only a matter of time for this very talented artist. And this is the CD we have been waiting for. Every song is fit for radio airplay. It opens with what should be a radio classic, the title track "Miss Understood"; a bluesy slide crazy rock nugget. She proceeds to cover lots of ground over the next dozen songs, adding horns, doubling the beat, slowing down for an aching moment of country blues, even throwing in some choice covers. This will be high on my list at the end of the year. http://www.carolynwonderland.com or http://myspace.com/carolynwonderland .
Bob Schneider - When the Sun Breaks Down on the Moon (2008)
One man albums are always tough to review. Just how good would this CD be if he had a full band playing with him. It's not like he can't afford to bring in the hired guns to flesh out the songs. There are lots of interesting songs here, but only a few that really grab you like Bob is capable of. Hearing much of this in concert a few weeks ago, it seems to make more sense now. And I guess, when everyone wants you to spend your time living up to previous classics likeLonelyland , you need to do things without outside influences every so often. Listening to this CD, there is still plenty of good music left in Bob. We'll just have to wait a little longer for his next classic.
Allison Moorer - Mockingbird (2008)
With a voice like Allison's, she could sing the greatest hits of the Archie's and I'd be happy. So, that she has put together an excellent collection of songs written by women, isn't at all a bad thing. She shines on her own song, "Mockingbird" as well as classics "Dancin' Barefoot", "Ring of Fire" and "Orphan Train" by Julie Miller. This is a very enjoyable album. Now get back to writing Allison. We love what you have to say.
Shelby Lynne - Just A Little Lovin' (2008)
Allison's sister Shelby Lynne, has taken a similar yet slightly different route for her latest CD. She has decided to focus on songs made famous by Dusty Springfield. There aren't many that can cover Dusty's songs, but Shelby does a great job. If you like that era of music, then do check out this CD.
Cat Power - Jukebox (2008)
And yet another cover CD... This I believe is Cat Power's second such CD and it starts out with the only version of "New York, New York" that I can stand to listen to these days: That's how unique and powerful a version it is. Cat Power has a style that just overshadows whatever she performs, making any song instantly her own. If you like Cat Power, you'll love this. If you don't, you'll hate this. What else can I say here.
Josh Ritter - In the Dark - Live at Vicar Street (2008)
His last CD really brought him home to me. And so I thought I'd check out this live CD to get a better feel for the older stuff. Great idea on my part. This is one fantastic CD with a DVD to boot. The passion from the audience seems to really bring out the best from Josh and his band. I can't wait to see him live some day.
The Missiles of October - Hope
Saw these guys as an opening act at The Coach House a few months ago and was really impressed. This is a solid CD with interesting songs and solid production and guitar work.
Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova - The Swell Season (2007)
So, this is really what started the whole thing. If you haven't seen "Once" yet, just go buy it. I guarantee you will enjoy the movie and the music. Glen and Marketa started with this CD, then Glen took some of the songs for a Frames CD and more of them for the movie. So, there's lots that is familiar here. But if you need to have everything related to "Once", you need this in your collection. I still can't get enough.
Herbie Hancock - River, The Joni Letters (2007)
To have a jazz great cover Joni Mitchell seems obvious. Why it has taken this long is beyond me. Yes, it won a Grammy but that is rarely a reason to listen to anything. Great songs performed by excellent vocalists and one of the great keyboard men is the reason to buy this.
Steve Poltz - Traveling (2008)
Steve is one funny guy. And when he writes about his life and the things in it, you can't help but laugh. I don't think a studio album will ever do him justice, but this gets pretty close. He's a fun guy with lots of fun songs, and some deeper meaning if you look close enough.
Paul Thorn - A Long Way From Tupelo (2008)
Speaking of funny, Paul Thorn takes that poor southerner role and spins it around on us until we we see ourselves in a whole different light. This is his best CD since the classic "Ain't Love Strange". And the extra disk with a bunch of live songs is probably worth the price of admission. Buy this CD. Paul deserves so much more recognition. http://www.paulthorn.com
Sia - Some People Have Real Problems (2008)
There is no "Breath Me" (the final song from "Six Feet Under") here and that is too bad. There is nothing bad here, but nothing really stands out. Maybe I need to listen to it some more.
Nick Lowe - Jesus of Cool (2008)
You may remember "Pure Pop for Now People", Nick's first album. And if you didn't know, this was the real title of that album (the record company in the U.S. wouldn't release it that way). With lots of extra songs, this is a must have for anyone who wants to hear the best of what the "New Wave" brought us. "Jesus of Cool" is a great title, but "Pure Pop for Now People" best describes this album.
Juno - Music from the Motion Picture
Obviously a special movie and soundtrack. Indie music from multiple generations make this a unique collection. From Barry Louise Polisar's classic "All I want is You" to the Velvet Underground's "I'm Sticking with You" there is something for every age. And just in case you need some classic rock, "All the Young Dudes" will make you smile.