As soon as I hit play on the Ragged Few’s latest single You Better Run I was reminded of a simpler time, when sound was sonorous without any effects, reverb, or general plasticity. Instead You Better Run celebrates the roots of the sound with infinite respect to the idols that proceeded the Folk Acoustic Americana band from Kansas City, US. The contemporary twist to the timeless Americana sound is sure to go down a treat with pretty much every Folk aficionado who is lucky enough to stumble across it. The angular instrumentals create an ethereally lifting sensations whilst the Ragged Few’s vocalist provides some low down and dirty raucous rock synergy through the mic. The smack of the double bass, the twang of the mandolin and the soar of the fiddle create one of the most glorious cacophonies of crooning Rock n Roll your ears have been treated to in a long time.
If that all sounds up your street head on over to SoundCloud where you can check out the Ragged Few’s March 2018 release You Better Run
To download music from the Ragged Few head on over to their website.
Review by Amelia Vandergast
If you imagined Morrissey on happy pills, you might get a taste of how glorious Franklin Gotham’s new single Soldier On is. The three-piece band’s sweet Americana Acoustic Rock anthemic style doesn’t take long to win you over. Not with the ethereally light Johnny Marr-esque guitar strumming that keeps this track lifted along with the vocalists Alt Country style vocals. Indie Folk really doesn’t get sweeter than Soldier On. Usually, I find uplifting music rather abrasive and almost crass, yet, Soldier On is so raw and genuine, it’s almost certain to break the coldest of ice queens (and kings?) I’m not sure if it was intentional, but the opening riff is straight-up R.E.M. Losing My Religion, but I’ll forgive Franklin Gotham anyway for creating a masterpiece of a track.
Soldier On is the debut single from Franklin Gotham’s latest Alternative album All We Have is Now which was first released in December, 2017.
You can check out & download Soldier On along with the rest of Franklin Gotham’s 2017 album on BandCamp
Keep up to date with Franklin Gotham’s melodic masterpieces & news by following the band on Facebook
Review by Amelia Vandergast
Paradise Outlaw’s self-titled 2016 album is one that criminally never received the notoriety which it deserved. The Grand Rapids, Michigan based collective is comprised from an absolute powerhouse of talent from the rhythmal instrumentalists Kevin Langeland (guitar), Kyle Gifford (guitar), Nathan Vredeveld (drums), John Johnson (bass), and Colin Tobin’s grittily soulful vocal ability.
Wastin’ the Day has to be by standout favourite track from the album, the palpable rhythm bleeds pure Americana roots synergy whilst Tobin’ pertains to his iconic gruff sensibility around crystal clear keyboard arrangements that throw you back in time. Paradise Outlaws pioneering sound taps into warm vintage melodies and serve as a breath of fresh air against all of the superficially brash Rock that currently clogs the soundwaves. I have no doubt if the Southern Rock legends continue to produce such blissful Country Rock & Roll, they’ll be up their icons of the genre.
The 11 track album is now available to listen to on Spotify using the link below:
You can show Paradise Outlaw some love by following the band on Facebook:
Review by Amelia Vandergast
This song can reach down into the pit of your stomach and wrench it with the veracity of your fist kiss behind the bike sheds. J R Harbidge’s charismatic vocal ability is just everything you need to hear at this time of the year. We’re swamped with crass sentimentality throughout the festive season, which is exactly why you should listen to his debut track which was brought out on 10th December. J R Harbidge undoubtedly has the potential to see himself through to the number one spot with his melodic prowess and command of minimalistic style.
This folk singer songwriter, has the ability to weave through his pensive style to make some of the most down to earth sounds through his acoustic unchained guitar melodies that twinge with some old school rhythm and blues familiarity.
The production and styling is absolutely flawless, a well rounded track for anyone looking for a little bit of Acoustic Singer Song Writer Soul to add to their playlists.
This song is pretty tame compared to the tracks on his album teaser, either way, I can’t wait to hear what Harbridge has in store!
Check out J R Harbidge’s debut track on the SoundCloud link below:
One month after the initial release of DreamTaun, the fresh new single from Ekaterine Music and we’re still revelling in the absolute masterpiece of this sonorous sound. With its wholesome hints of Country, Americana, Electro-Pop, Funk and Ska DreamTaun has the momentum of a thousand wild horses.
The track progresses with Ska tones reverberating from the guitar with transient slips of melody from the verse to the chorus. The track has an angelic aura about it twined with the exuberance of one of the most confident women that you’ve ever had the pleasure of listening to expressing herself in a midst of raucous energy. The sound dominates its sweet euphoric vibe. The vocals are as clear as glass fracturing into a thousand pieces through the rhythm of this track. Ekaterine Music is the new musical venture from visionary Moscow born singer song writer Ekartine Goglidze whose music soon caught the attention of the BBC. In 2016, she was invited to perform her original material in the live sessions. She’s a woman of astounding grace and stunning talent.
Check out her new single DreamTaun on the SoundCloud link below:
Make sure you also check out her website & social media, once you get a taste of her sound, you’re going to want to get acquainted with her.
Some songs make you wait for the payoff and are all the more effective for it. A David Gilmour solo just isn’t the same without the bitter anticipation that drags us there. The art of letting a song build without putting half the audience to sleep is a worthy endeavor. People forget how dynamic the greats were when we fixate too much on how loud they eventually got. Blind Atlas knows how to use silence and let their instrument layers breathe during verses. Their song Space Americans is a performance that’s intimate and welcoming for anyone passing by, all the while hiding the true nature of their potential energy.
When you’ve finally become enthralled in the shallow, minimalist mix of the song, you feel as if you’ve been slowly pulled out to sea by an ever-pulling tide. This is when the party finally starts and you’re abruptly hit by wave after wave of fast-paced rock instrumentation that does feel like a callback to those awesome louds and highs of some of rock’s greatest. This masterful use of dynamics energizes the song in an infectious way. Even when you know the push is coming, you still find yourself settling into the softer side of the song every time.
Oftentimes, in today’s fast paced world, we tend to think that the groovier and catchier a song is, the better, but in this case Head Cheerleader’s “Murderers” shows us something which makes that thought process very questionable. This song, which features a very slow tempo, a set of concise yet deep lyrics and a particularly melancholic melody brings out the beauty in both artistic and emotional rawness which only a well thought out song like this could portray. While expressing a certain amount of sensitivity through the music and the words this song is also very thought provoking yet soothing at the same time, with its gentle tempo and instrumental arrangement.
The music backdrop itself is highlighted by a very warm organ tone which brings out further the meaning of the lyrics and allows the narrative to unfold, yet past the midpoint of the song the lyrics are left to sink in through a repeated melody which allows the listener to just feel the sensations created by the music and just reflect on the lyrics. The vocal tone itself is also a strong characteristic, giving the music that authentic country and folk sound which colours the narrative so well. With their song “murderers,” Head Cheerleader have truly created a space where one can just stop, and enjoy the beauty and rawness in their music.
-Sarah Marie Bugeja
America is more than diversity and pride and celebration. America is physically vast and this is often overlooked from the tight quarters of a dense city. This is why people truly love Americana. It is a musical style that maintains storytelling as a focus with specific themes borrowed from poetry and art that culminate in something that always feels simple and familiar despite all it can encompass. In the case of The Television of Cruelty, it borrows from several places. Orchestral awe and psychedelic influences creak in and out of a story of travel.
What makes this song stand out among similar peers is definitely the feeling of travel that’s embedded in the mix itself. There are times when you can hear the crowd and other times when you can swear the singing is studio-based. For all we know, this song was recorded in a car while quietly driving down a highway. There is a very pure sense of distance covered by the end of the track. For a song about traveling companions, it’s fitting that one feels as if they’ve arrived somewhere different than when the song began. Road Movie is a trip worth taking again and again.
Strip back the modern sheen and studio gimmickry of most music and you find a folk template underneath, strip that back to its very essence and you are in the realms inhabited by Fremantle du Kings and Queens. Acoustic guitars sketch out the barest of structures add beautifully drifting vocals, close harmony dynamics and ambient whistling drones and you have everything that need to create their gothic country meets ambient-folk lines.
But if the building blocks seem simple, as always it is how you blend them and to what effect which is the real art and Kings and Queens are masters of taking such minimal threads and weaving a stark and striking sound, one built as much on what they leave out as what they put in. Atmosphere and anticipation hang in the gaps left between word and chord, proving that sometimes you don’t have to do much more than build musical bubbles around the sound of the world. The art is having the ear to hear them in the first place.
Enok Amrani is a Norwegian singer and songwriter from a middle-sized town called Porsgrunn. His music, which is driven by the lyrics, often moves in a melancholic landscape with elements from different styles like rock,soul and country.
Enok says “I grew up in a family where music was a central part. Both my parents played the guitar and sang together in our home, and occasionally in different churches. I started playin’ the guitar at the age of 12, and started singing a few years later. The music has always been a hobby with a few small gigs each year since 2011. During those years I started writing my own songs, and a desire to present them for an audience grew more and more until 2015, when I decided to see if I could go somewhere with my music”
In 2016 things starting to happen, Enko was given the opportunity to record some of his songs which has now landed in our demo pile!
Take a listen and go and be his new friend! https://www.facebook.com/amranimusic/