Speak, Brother – “Father”
-Let me make a technical, unbiased statement as a critic: I love this song. No, but seriously, this is an incredible song that blends elements of pop rock and folk music into a really fascinating dynamic track. The raw, building energy is satisfying for repeated listens. They remind me of arena bands like U2 but also the organic folk style of someone like the Rend Collective. This is a fantastic track.
Rees Finley – “Reckless”
-The real talk style of this track reminds me a bit of Ben Rector. Finley’s songwriting is witty and to the point. The funky blend of pop sensibilities and layered electronics works really well. It’s not the typical folk music fare we typically feature here, but it’s forging a unique genre identity that we are happy to support.
Baswod – “Sleep”
-With a light and airy vibe, this track is sure to find some fans among our more relaxed readers. It’s not going to bang or get you dancing. Instead, the sullen melody will sooth you near sleep or at least to contemplation. If there was an album of lullabies for adults, this song would be on it. The harmonies around 1:10 are worth the whole experience. This is next-level good folk music.
Upstairs Open – “Chicago”
-Genre bending and intriguing, Upstairs Open keep me interested with every line in this track. They remind me a bit of what I loved about Arcadian Wild when I found them last year. There’s an intimacy and dynamism to this performance. More than “just” a folk duo, the band seems to bring layers of sounds, shifting from quiet to a power punch with ease. If you’ve ever had a memory stuck in your mind and heart that you sort want to shake but don’t at the same time… this is a song about that.
boerd – “Void”
-We don’t often feature ambient sounds in music and we don’t usually cover much electro music either. So what gives? Well, listen to this track. It’s hard to identify exactly what it is, but there’s a spiritual element to the core of the song. I can’t think of any better way to say it than there’s something in the center of the composition, like a fire that emanates heat changing the whole room. If this is experimental music, then the experiment is a success because I feel something with this one.