When it comes to music and song writing that chooses to step outside the normal bounds of style and genre, there’s a thin line between brilliance and pretentiousness. And whether you think this latest release from Joe Rhinewine is the former or the latter will likely come down to your taste.
Available to stream online now, new single ‘In The Box (Put It)’ finds Rhinewine on knockabout form, laying an improvised vocal over a very well executed blues backing. The approach may be jarring to some, and outright dismissed by others. But there’s a humour and purity of purpose here that gives the track a lo-fi charm that’s hard to dismiss, and it’s more than enough to raise interest in his debut EP – ‘Songs from NowHere’ – which is out now on Amazon.
When a songwriter is compared to artists like Jose Gonzalez, Nick Drake and others of that ilk you know one thing for sure – this is going to music that moves you. This is definitely the case with Calming River, whose new EP ‘The Ones That We Left Behind’ is out now.
Thoughtful and melancholic without straying into outright negativity, the EP is clearly the work of a man who knows his way around an acoustic guitar. The complexity of those acoustic guitar lines is astounding, and would make a fine instrumental album in their own right.
However, the lyrics add a new dimension, full of feeling and reality. It’s said that Calming River is an artist best suited to small, intimate venues, and it’s not hard to see why from this EP release.
‘Tis the season to be jolly, and thanks to these fun new Christmas tracks from Kelly Moneymaker, that should be easy this year. A US soul songwriter with a stunning voice, Moneymaker seems genetically inclined to sing in this genre. There’s a long tradition of Christmas blues tracks, all the way back to Elvis, and Moneymaker’s ‘Home For The Holidays’ continues that tradition with great aplomb.
You can hear the full track above, and if you like what you’re hearing you can get it now on iTunes. And as if that wasn’t enough, Kelly Moneymaker has also released a new version of ‘Jingle Bells’ – available here.
Posted in Pop, Roots
- Tagged Christmas, funk, Home for the Holidays, Jingle Bells, Kelly Moneymaker, Pop, single, soul, video, vocal
Sometimes getting a break in the music industry is down to being in the right place at the right time. Even for the most talented, you can send all the demo links in the world to everyone and still end up being ignored. Some people, however, do slip through the gaps and find themselves making the most of that talent.
Philip Murray Warson is a folk songwriter whose track above, ‘Following Time’, demonstrates that he is good at what he does. An actor as well as a musician, Warson is well used to being in front of an audience. However, in spite of all his experience treading the boards, it was a chance meeting in a London pub that led to him being invited to play gigs in New York.
That experience led to a new confidence in his songwriting, which has resulted in his new EP. ‘Last of the Hunted’ immediately won airplay on BBC introducing, and now it’s available through Bandcamp.
What do you get if you take good old fashioned rock and roll, mix it with some blue eyed soul, funky blues and a dash of Aretha? The answer is the new album from US vocal superstar Kelly Moneymaker. And if that sounds like a set-up and punchline for a joke, it’s not.
Previously a member of female vocal group Exposé (named among Billboards top ten female groups of all time, by the way), Kelly Moneymaker has returned to music after some time off to start a family, and is now working hard to claw herself back to the top.
Thankfully, the strength of her vocal alone is enough to get a lot of attention, and the fact that she’s being backed by a host of top quality musicians and kick-ass songs is just a bonus. This is blues, soul and rock ‘n’ roll at its best.
Posted in Rock, Roots
- Tagged album, band, blues, Expose, gospel, Kelly Moneymaker, roots, singer, soul, Stone, vocal
A debut single from a new singer songwriter, ‘Orpheus’ is out now from Baron Goodlove & The Dreadful Noise. Thankfully, the band name is inappropriate, as this is a very good curtain raiser indeed.
Really enjoyable in an offbeat-sort of way (you’re unlikely to dance around the room as you listen), the fun from this comes from the subversiveness. There’s a lack of melody which gives the vocal and lyrics space to so their thing, and it makes for an interesting effect.
‘Orpheus’ will also soon be found on an EP which is out soon. But if you want to sneak it into your collection before that, the band are offering it here for free:
Light, entertaining and instantly catchy, this video is ‘Live on Love’ by Jess Thristan – the title track to a new EP which sees the singer-songwriter on typically fine form. With so many acoustic songwriters to choose from in the UK at the moment, it takes a lot of effort to keep standing head and shoulders above the rest, but there’s just something about Thristan that means she manages to do that.
Maybe it’s because her voice just flows out of her, making all that effort seem easy, thanks to a talent that is so obviously inherent. Thristan was clearly born to sing, and it helps that she writes songs which suit her perfectly. The track above sees her on cheeky, melodic form, but the other two tracks on the EP explore the more powerful side of a versatile vocal.
The EP, her second, is out now, and yet another step forward for an acoustic songwriter who stands out from a crowded stage. Long may it continue.
Posted in Folk, Indie, Pop, Roots
- Tagged Acoustic, country, EP, Jess Thristan, Live on Love, Pop, singer-songwriter, video
Available now though Red Beet Records, ‘Just a Mortal Man’ is a new album from a vocalist who has been a long time in the industry. Jerry Lawson has spent over forty years as a vocalist since founding vocal group The Persuasions to great success, and now – for the first time – he is releasing an album on his own.
Singing a great selection of songs from the last few decades, Lawson gives each his own unique flavour. He runs the whole gauntlet in terms of roots genres – gospel, folk, country, soul, rock n roll, etc. – and never loses himself in any of them. Of course, it’s an album that aims straight down the middle of the road and is unlikely to win awards for originality, but that’s not the point of albums like this.
This is simply a celebration of a career and talent of a man who is truly talented and has deserved to ride the wave for as long as he has. A humbling achievement.