AUDIO: Country Lips’ “Grizzly Bear Billboard”

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Party country? Okay now how about this: Seattle. Wait a minute: country music from Seattle? Let’s face it, a lot of Seahawks fans are deep country fans and it’s possible one of their favorite combos is an octet who call themselves Country Lips. If they’re not their favorite, they should be, specifically with an album coming out on August 19th called Till the Daylight Comes. Find out what a bit of country from the 206 sounds like with a live version of “Grizzly Bear Billboard”, the band’s single for it.

REVIEW: Emily Rodgers’ “2 Years”

Emily Rodgers photo EmilyRodgers_cover_zpshmpvkvmi.jpg If you’re familiar with the name Emily Rodgers, you may have wondered where she has been. While hew new release is called 2
Years
(Misra), it has been seven years since she came out with her last album, 2009’s Bright Day and a lot has happened since then. Then again, she could easily say the same thing about her life as well but she returns with an album of ten songs, showing why her music and passionate voice has been missed.

Her music is very much today but it is also rustic, as if it was meant to be from the past or it came from the past and we are hearing something that is meant to be told to us. It’s as if Rodgers wrote this without a sense of time or timing but when you hear this a year from now, five years, ten, on our death beds, we are going to remember the moment we first heard this and why songs like this aren’t as celebrated as they once were. Or maybe it still is and I happen to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. What I also like is that occasionally, the songs don’t sound right either. I mean it is in key and everything but… while she sounds nothing like Joni Mitchell, Rodgers has a way of going on places that may sound unintentional but where it goes is where it means to be and where you mean to be. Call it alt.country. call it No Depression, call it left-of-country, call it what should be on country radio today but isn’t but simply call it Emily Rodgers’ new album. Let’s hope we will not have to wait until 2023 for another follow-up.

VIDEO: Steamboats’ “Dimes”

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They are from America, New York to be exact, and are willing to call themselves Americana. Is that possible? No matter, if it’s a way to get people familiar with what they’re about, you can use any word youw ant and they are called Steamboats. Their debut album is called Chosen Peace and they’re getting some positive reviews for what they’re doing so regardless of what their P.R. people want to call them, it’s working. Have an examination through their sound with “Dimes”, which is worth much more than 40 cents (because if each guy in the group had a time, it would lead to just 40… just listen.)

SOME STUFFS: Audio Fidelity to release remasters of albums by Loggins & Messina and America

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It may be close to the end of the year but the folks at Audio Fidelity are not slowing down, for they’re already getting ready to release some new remasters in the new year. Two are on the way, one of which is one of my all time favorite albums.

  • January 22, 2016 is when you’ll be seeing a brand new remaster of Kenny Loggins & Jim Messina’s debut album as a duo, 1971’s Sittin’ In. In truth, the album is credited as Kenny Loggins with Jim Messina, as Messina had been known as a member of the Buffalo Springfield but was also in Poco, and this was a way for him to introduce Kenny Loggins to the world. The album is beautifully produced by Messina and while it’s the musicianship, singing, and songwriting of both Loggins and Messina that was important, the drumming from Merel Bregante has to be heard to be believed, especially in tracks like “Nobody But You”, the 3-song medley that closes Side 1 and my favorite L&M song, the almighty “Vahevala”, with an incredible duo sax solo from Al Garth and Al Garth that always blows me away, very John Coltrane-esque with its Indian touches. Mobile Fidelity Sound Lab (MFSL) once released this album as a silver disc and sounded awesome, so I can’t weit to hear Audio Fidelity’s treatment of it.
    Sittin in

  • By the time America released Hearts in 1975, they had four albums behind them and they were still ready to unleash some more powerful music. This effort was produced by Sir George Martin, known for his work over the years with The Beatles, and it was Martin’s second time working with the band. Hearts features a number of moving songs and features three songs released as singles, including “Sister Golden Hair”, “Woman Tonight”, and “Daisy Chain”.
    Hearts


    Hearts was originally released in quadraphonic as well so the hybrid SACD will feature both the album stereo and 4.0 surround sound. Sittin’ In was only released in stereo (their Loggins & Messina, Full Sail and Native Sons albums had the quad treatment) so the SACD can be played in two different ways, for those who have SACD players.

    (NOTE: Both SACD’s can be pre-ordered above via Amazon.com. They do not show the covers as of this writing but it will lead you to Amazon and show you how to order.)

  • AUDIO: GospelbeacH’s “Your Freedom”


    Pacific Surf Line (Alive Naturalsound) is the debut album from GospelbeacH, a group that features members of more bands like Beachwood Sparks, The Chris Robinson Band, and The Tyde, but the press release says “and more”, so find out somewhere who that “and more” refers to. The album will be out a month from this day, and you can have a listen to a song from it called “Your Freedom”.

    REVIEW: Craig Marshall’s “After All”

    Craig Marshall photo CraigMarshall_cover_zpsggtbe8o2.jpg Austin, Texas musician Craig Marshall has released his new album (his sixth) called After All (Big Ticket) and if you are someone who likes their brand of music on the down home side with hints of country, folk, and an acoustic spirit, you’ll really like this.

    What I like about this is it reminds me immediately of music I am familiar with and enjoy, be it Neil Young, Wilco, Little Feat, and Wilco, and it leans very much on the country side of things, or what many will call Americana, an old school spirit. These are songs that are well written and produced, and they tell the kind of stories that you want to believe not only to hear it from Marshall, but because they feel like something you can relate to it because they’re a part of your story too. He cites Bucks Owens and Merle Haggard as influences and as someone who is a huge Owens fan, I can hear it in songs like “The Only Sound” and “In Can’t Begin To Know”, where the adventures told are part of the experience, the other is to hear how the stories are explained. The songs that I got into are those featuring harmony vocals from Betty Soo, those stood out beautifully well (including the opening cut, “Standing Still”) but you’ll also hear Marshall joined with Jason Garcia, Shane Cooley and NoĆ«lle Hampton throughout.

    As the bio for the album states, this is song-driven music, for those who still believe in the power of a song that moves you. After All will become the album you’ve been searching for for awhile.

    (After All will be released on August 7th.)

    REVIEW: Julie C Myers’ “Rock On: Fearless Journey”

    Julie C Myers photo JulieCMyers_cover_zpsrpkjjebv.jpg Julie C Myers is someone who has a deep love for blues and rock’n’roll, and it sounds like it throughout her latest album but the truth behind her voice is that she can simply sing, regardless of genre, However, if you love your blues and rock as well, have a listen to Rock On: Fearless Journey (Wild Heart). The covers she does are quite nice, there’s even a country twist in her rendition of Electric Light Orchestra’s “Destination Unknown”, but says she does it in a Robert Palmer fashion. If you know Palmer’s love of rock and soul, then you know this approach can’t be anything but good, and it is. She also does a cover of “”Dancing In The Moonlight” and David Essex’s “Rock On” but the originals are satisfying to the point where you want to take her music home with you. What I like in a good voice is the richness of it, not being fearful, and there’s a lack of fear in each and every song. You may not hear her on the radio as much as other artists but she could easily outshine anyone today. Take this one to the bank, the supermarket, the bakery, and anywhere else that comforts you.

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