New Music Friday – Episode 14
If you’ve been following (and voting in) these polls, you’ve heard some pretty remarkable music over the past few months. There are so many talented artists out there, we cannot possibly cover them all. This gives us a chance to let you all give a listen to some of the really exciting ones. Check out these artists, vote in the poll, and give it a share with your friends who love music. Look at it this way – it’s an election where your vote counts and you won’t lose any friends over your choice!
Postblue – “Love to Praise You”
-This is a fantastic, layered track that has all the ambiance you would ever want from an indie rock track. Honestly, when I tell people I like “indie rock” this is what I hope they think of. It’s a sound that is sufficiently rock (guitars and beat), yet doesn’t feel at all like the commercial garbage that dominates the airwaves. It’s sophisticated and even a little bit artsy in all the right ways.
Jane’s Party – “Old Friends”
-This is a real jam rock track here. The rhythm is chill in a way that makes you feel like you’re out on the water or sitting in the back of a fuzzy weekend club. The crisp and spirited guitars give the song a characteristic snap, while the cool and relaxing vocal is just what you wanted to hear. I can’t help but think of a good smooth whiskey when I hear this, more kick than you expect but with a smooth and efficient finish. It’s also a great lyric, “bring back some old friends and some more wine.” Oh yeah.
Gringo Star – “Get Closer”
-There’s something about this band that really does remind me of its namesake Ringo Starr. Maybe it’s the accent or the distorted guitars, but I think Ringo would like these guys honestly. They sound like a raw, but still interesting rock band. Sometimes indie rock can be so emo and sad that you just can’t get into it, but this song is really positive sounding. I can’t quite rap my head around the chord progression, but it seems to be blending traditional rock and maybe some kind of newer jazz? In any event, it sounds cool and groovy.
The Cardinal Kings – “Wait”
-The heavy guitars that open this track are absolutely engaging. They just pull me right into the song. Then there are these incredible bluesy chords that just make it feel all the more badass. It’s a pump up song that’s ultimately about being patient. The lead vocal bleeds with the conviction of Leadbelly and the rock chops of Steppenwolf. This is a sound that cannot be missed. Real rock fans need to be following The Cardinal Kings.
Skyward – “Casualty”
-Maybe it’s a dated musical reference these days, but I really think of Paramore when I hear Skyward. There’s a unique lead vocal from this band with both a man and a woman taking lead at different times. But the aggressive instrumentation reminds me of that late 2010s big rock sound. The way the song dynamically shuts down then amps back up really makes the listener feel the emotional turmoil at the heart of the lyrics. It’s an intriguing rock composition.
Loch Lomond – “Silver Felt”
-I have Loch Lomond listed as “vintage rock” because their sound does not sound like anything from recent decades. In fact, you’ll hear sounds that are more like the Beatles or early Rolling Stones than anyone else out today. That said, references to these rock hall of famers are warranted with this extraordinarily talented group. Loch Lomond utilize strings and unique instrumentation to create a feeling that goes beyond the dark backroom conditions of their vintage rock pioneers.
Northern National – “The New Age”
-Honestly, “the new age” is more than the title of this track. It’s also a great description for the sound of this band, a cutting age style that incorporates elements of electric music and highly dynamic production. Of course the vocals are delicious and powerful, but there’s also an exciting beat and instrumentation. “We run like the drums pounding in our veins…” It’s the kind of jam you put on your phone for your morning run. It’s inspiring and provocative, just like rock ought to be as it reinvents itself.
Raener – “Why”
-This is an interesting fusion of rock, R&B, and electronic elements. Talk about originality, Raener brings something that feels and sounds totally new. It’s probably not for everyone, especially not everyone who loves traditional rock music, but the fusion is really a captivating idea. The existential and difficult questions at the heart of the lyrics really make you think with each new listen of the track. As the high tones resonate inside your mind, you’ll find yourself asking more questions beyond just “why?”
YJY – “Evergreens”
-The lead vocal of YJY is this sort of punk rock timbre with a folk singer’s spirit. As the two blend on some pretty captivating lyrics and high energy instrumentation, listeners find themselves pulled into a song that sounds like it would be as happy on a porchside drinking session or overlaid on the important adventure scene of a good movie. The guitars set a driving mood, while the vocal relaxes the listener back out. It all comes together for an anthem that I think should be on every college rock station on the planet.
Flight Brigade – “Hurricane Season”
-Truthfully, Flight Brigade might have one of the best full sounds in rock I’ve heard in the past year. They have everything from the guitars and rhythm to a quality lead vocal. But beyond that, the lyrics are just serious enough to cause reflection, but the listener can enjoy the song without the words too. There’s an atmosphere to the song that reminds me of an action movie or video game soundtrack. The guitars win the day, really, but the total composition keeps me wanting to hit “repeat” as soon as it’s done.