Many good things this week! Many much good things! Swood says to enjoy the spring things. Also! Record store day is next weekend, on Saturday, so go check out Bull Moose.
Roky Erikson & Okkervil River
David Byrne & Fatboy Slim
Roky Erikson and Okkervil River – True Love Cast Out All Evil
Psych rock + folk rock + found recordings; sounds a lot like Bonnie "Prince" Billy.
Caribou – Swim
Dense, synthy, dancey dream rock.
The Kissaway Trail – Sleep Mountain
"Your classic, epic-build, chimey European…shit" – Swood (who meant for that last word to express disappointment with her inarticulateness rather than to describe the music)
Sarah Jaffe – Suburban Nature
Sweet minimal folk pop.
David Byrne and Fatboy Slim – Here Lies Love
A 22-song concept album about Imelda Marcos featuring guests like Cyndi Lauper (CYNDI LAUPER!), Shara Worden (My Brightest Diamond), and Sharon Jones.
New Young Pony Club – The Optimist
Tough new-rave electropop.
Laura Marling – I Speak Because I Can
Deep-voiced, slow and pretty folk. Sounds kind of like your mom singing to you before bed, if your mom was awesome.
Coheed and Cambria – Year of the Black Rainbow
New Coheed and Cambria
MGMT – Congratulations
Intentionally not catchy to throw off the tween fans?
Tallest Man on Earth – Wild Hunt
Bob Dylan-ish folk rock.
New Zealand @ SXSW
New Zealand bands, like Ruby Suns, at SXSW.
Nini & Ben – The Reasons We Try
Expressive, simple, and tender, with substance. Some of it sounds like the soundtrack to a sad episode of a teen drama show, but still worth a listen. Definitely check out “Down to the Road,” “I Won’t Look Back,” and “Mother”.
Anais Mitchell – Hadestown
A folk opera based on the Orpheus myth. Wait, it gets better – it’s set in a “post-apocalyptic American depression era”. Yeah, I know. It’s well produced (not so common in folk, sadly) and pretty cool. No description really does it justice (post-modern blues-rock?) – you’ll have to check it out yourself.
In My Room
20 well-known Folk artists get together for 20 covers of music from a huge number of genres, including songs by Tom Waits, Curtis Mayfield, Cat Stevens, Tom Paxton, Bob Dylan, Richard Starkey, Ray LaMontagne, Bruce Springstein, and others. Check out “The Last Thing On My Mind,” “You Don’t Miss Your Water” and “If I Should Fall Behind”.
James Keyes – Ruminations
Really the best new folk in at least a year. Upbeat, bluesy, and rootsy. Keyes’ scratchy-in-the-good-way voice + skilled accompaniment = good stuff. “It’s All Easy,” “Work Song,” and “You Got Nothing” are all great. Also “Come Down”. And the rest of the CD.
Croony pop-folk. A good folk choice for people who normally don't like folk much. Gentle, sweeping and pleasant. Check out “Confession” and “Safe Harbor”.
Black Prairie – Feast of the Hunter’s Moon
Mournful, powerful, bluegrass/folk; sounds a bit like Crooked Still. Smolders and pulsates with some sweet folk accordion, dobro, and cello bits. Check out “Red Rocking Chair”, the jazzy “Annie McGuire”, and “A Prairie Musette” (a real musette, though not very French in style).
Waterbug Anthology Nine
Once again, 20 tracks and 20 artists singing some new songs on the usual themes – family, nature, travel, etc. Check out the first two tracks and “Do You Love The Life You Made?”.
Paul Curreri – California
Creative, graceful, fun blues-folk, topped off by a healthy dose of excellent musicianship. Great stuff. Must listens: “California,” “Once Upon A Rooftop” and “I Can Hear the Future Calling”.