Posts Tagged folk
“Come and See,” Lean Year
–a meditative and profound song with lilting vocals and a mesmerizing melody. Powerful and elegant. Lean Year is Virginia-based singer Emilie Rex and filmmaker/musician Rick Alverson [The Comedy, Entertainment]. The duo co-wrote the album at home in Virginia and recorded it at the home studio of Chicago musician and engineer Erik Hall [In Tall Buildings, NOMO]. Lean Year’s self-titled album is out now.
“Oh Marie,” Misty Boyce
— This is an aching, sad, beautiful, winding song. The Los Angeles-based singer/songwriter’s full-length album, Get Lost, will be released on February 16, 2018. As a popular keyboardist, Misty Boyce backed Sting, Ingrid Michaelson, Sara Bareilles and BØRNS. She recently lost her brother to an opioid overdose and her step-father to suicide. The indie-folk artist turned to writing music to work through the varied emotions she felt after these losses and hopes to reduce the stigma associated with drug addiction, mental illness and suicide. Boyce said: “Sometimes, I write to get the things I don’t want to feel out. And then maybe somebody else hears it and feels the same way, and it makes us both feel less alone. I get very frustrated with how disconnected we all are from each other, and how we’ll use whatever we can get our hands on to other people, whether it’s religion or our phones or what you like on Pinterest—anything to make us feel right and prove other people wrong. And then we don’t have to listen anymore. We can just tune out and focus on our own self-obsessed worlds. Nobody’s listening. It’s a scary thing.”
Hey if you have middle-aged nostalgia, there are plenty of good shows! UK native Lloyd Cole will be in Boston on November 15, 2017 for an acoustic set at City Winery for his Retrospective Tour. New venue and should be an excellent setting. I ‘m most familiar with Lloyd Cole for his solo work from the 90s– he released an eponymous album in 1990 and Don’t Get Weird on Me Babe in 1991 and Bad Vibes in 1993. Revisiting. It’s solid. Brooding, assured. Bit of glamrock/Britpop elements combined with folk style. Although I didn’t remain tapped in on The Easthampton, Mass.-based musician’s career throughout the years, he’s not stopped regularly putting out music. I really like the song “Women’s Studies” which came out on Standards in 2013.
$22-26, Wednesday, November 15, 8 p.m., City Winery Boston, 1 Canal Street, Boston, citywinery.com.
After a six-year hiatus and several days before releasing its third album, Crack Up, Grammy-nominated Fleet Foxes performed at the Knockdown Center in Queens, New York as part of Live from the Artists Den. Live from the Artists Den is a critically-acclaimed television and digital music series best known for presenting secret concerts in non-traditional, often historic settings.
The episode airs this month. Check your local listings.
Regarding the band’s six-year hiatus, lead singer and guitarist Robin Pecknold explained: “I felt like I wanted just a broader range of experience as a person and a musician to draw from in direct and indirect ways, so it seemed like something worth being open-minded about.”
Fleet Foxes formed in Seattle, Washington in 2006. The band released its self-titled album in 2008 and Helplessness Blues in 2011.
Fleet Foxes is:
Robin Pecknold [lead vocals/guitar]
Skyler Skjelset [guitar, mandolin, vocals]
Casey Wescott [keyboards/ mandolin/ vocals]
Christian Wargo [bass guitar/ guitar/ vocals]
Morgan Henderson [upright bass/ guitar/ woodwinds/ violin/ percussion/ saxophone]
Wistful, upbeat and comforting, it’s kick back with a beer or a glass of wine and soak it in music from a talented songwriter and guitarist. Indie-folk/Americana artist (and longtime John Prine guitarist) Jason Wilber will release a new album, Reaction Time, on August 11, 2017. His music is in the vein of Neil Young, Replacements, Father John Misty, Son Volt and Old 97s.
The Bloomington, Indiana-based musician said:
“Making records, for me, is a process of discovery. Often, the song you thought was gonna be great turns out to be okay, and the one you thought was just okay turns into something amazing. And that’s because of all the collaboration—with the producer, with all the other musicians—and also the unknown, the mystery of what’s gonna unfold when you start working on a song. You can never predict what’s gonna happen. So as you go through the process, you have to keep your ears open for the things that are magic.”
Looking for a fun, catchy summer song? With sweet vocals and heavy beats this is a good choice. New York pop singer Samantha Urbani wrote, recorded and co-produced the song and directed the video. Urbani is the front-woman for conceptual punk pop band friends and this is her solo project. Urbani said “Go Deeper” is about “how necessary visibility and accountability are – getting to the bottom of things, transformatively: the harder it is, the more worth it. The only way out is to go through.” Debut EP out soon.
I’ve been listening to the new Ride and Slowdive albums quite a bit lately and this song falls in nicely with its Brit-influenced shoegaze, swirly sound. There’s lots of layers with the opening part establishing a gentle calm while an underlying guttural churning bubbles up to maintain the soothing vibe. The Seattle pop band also mixes in organ, electric piano and analog synthesizers for its electro-folk sound. The artistic, eclectic result works on several levels on the upcoming album—some songs ring a bit clearer than this track, others are much more upbeat and there’s lots of wistfulness. Tomten is: Brian Noyes-Watkins (keys, guitar, vocals); Jake Brady (drums) and Dillon Sturtevant (bass, vocals). The trio will release its third full-length Cremation Songs [ Plume Records] on July 7th, 2017 on CD, vinyl, and digital formats.
“I first thought of the name Cremation Songs as a bit of a joke to poke fun at our previous record The Farewell Party,” says Brian Noyes-Watkins. “It later dawned on me that it fit the songs well, seeing as most are vaguely about death in some way or another, excluding ‘First Song of Spring’ and ‘Mette’s Tune.’ I just hope our next record doesn’t mark the Born Again / Embracing a Cult phase.”
“I became obsessed with drawing extended arms (usually blue) posing inside of little boxes,” Noyes-Watkins reveals about the cover artwork. “I did a few versions: a hand drowning in the sea, another with a crystal ball, one juggling a rainbow. I settled on the apple/applecore because I liked the idea of having a sunrise/sunset theme on the jacket. I’m hoping to complete a collection of 20 or so to release in a booklet for a limited edition of the record.”
American Opera, “Monsters Among Men”
A beautifully melodic and thoughtful song with powerful vocals and an urgency in its message, reminiscent of Joan Osborne’s “One of Us.” American Opera is New York singer/songwriter John Bee’s project. He said that “Monsters Among Men” is: “about getting older while trying to stay true to who you were when you were young. I was raised in the church. Three things happened in my life that made me question everything I ever believed. My friend took his own life, my cousin’s life was taken from him, and the Sandy Hook shooting. I still don’t know what to believe. But I know what I want to believe.”
American Opera’s full-length album Small Victories is out June 30, 2017.
Swarming Branch, “Zsazsur’s Real Estate Song”
Upbeat, catchy and quirky single. I get a bit of a Folk Implosion and OK Go vibe from this Columbus, Ohio based experimental electro/indie/folk project of singer/songwriter Andrew Graham, drummer Lon Leary and a rotating group of collaborating musicians. The new album from Swarming Branch— Surreal Number— (SofaBurn Records) is out now. The album was produced by Rob Barbato (Drinks, Kevin Morby, Peaking Lights).
Luca D’Alberto, “Endless”
Full throttle new wave classical music in this gorgeous, atmospheric song. Luca D’Alberto is a classical composer, arranger and multi-instrumentalist [violin, viola, violectra, cello and piano] from Italy. Endless [7K!] is out now. The album was produced by Martyn Heyne (Nils Frahm, Lubomir Melnyk, Peter Broderick, Tiny Ruins and The National).
About the album title, Luca said: “Endless is a secret place, a place where we can be free to remember everything, without being afraid, without limits. A place where we can let go of ourselves, without thinking, where we can allow our bodies to rest peacefully and find the courage to live the noisy silence of our lives.”
Connor Desai, “Killing the One Who Believed in Your Love”
— comfortable, soulful vocals combined with meaningful lyrics provides candor and intensity in this song about a woman’s independence and self-identity. Desai explained: “The decision to reclaim oneself often requires women to grieve someone who is still living, or an ideal which was part of them.”
Connor Desai earned a masters in teaching and works as a music teacher. The Seattle-based musician’s new EP, Sister, is out now. Feminists take note.
Thayer Sarrano, “Thieves”
Thayer’s vocals sound a lot like Hope Sandoval and the song’s arrangements may remind listeners of Mazzy Star. The ethereal, swirly music instantly takes you to emotional depths both gloomy and exquisite.
Athens, GA-based psych/shoegaze/dream-pop artist Thayer Sarrano grew up in a seminary as well as the swamps of southern Georgia. Classically trained as a child, she writes poetry and instrumental compositions. She started collaborating with friends and worked as a studio/touring session player with of Montreal, Dead Confederate’s T. Hardy Morris, Cracker & Camper Van Beethoven, Dave Marr, David Barbe, Kuroma and more. Her new LP is called Shaky.