New Music Friday – Episode 49 – Vote in the poll to decide who wins a full album review!

Sometimes we pick a theme and sometimes the theme picks us. Here’s a great batch of moving music that just seems perfect for this late spring mood. If you’re feeling skittish from political uncertainty or just a rough patch in life, let these crooners make you feel a little bit better. Please share and let your friends vote, too.

Layla Frankel – “Alamosa”
-The vocal on this track is really pure, making for the chill folk rock sound to go down smooth. The vocals seem to be layered a bit here, making it natural to sing along. There’s a sense of travel and adventure to the song that really works.

Native – “Ocean”
-The rush of the acoustic guitar opening the track really is reminiscent of crashing waves. The whole imagery of the song is peaceful and moving. When the vocal harmonies enter the track, you’ll melt. It’s a touch of pop, but mostly just incredible, sincere folk music. This is a stunning track, truthfully.

Vero – “Hello”
-Here’s a pop song that’s different than anything we’ve ever featured before. It’s an avant garde approach, but after the mechanistic opening you’ll hear something that’s a little funky and a little sultry. It’ll put you in mind of Nine Inch Nails and a few other alt rock acts from the 90s. Just let it move you.

KOPPS – “Baby I’m Dead Inside”
-This dynamic electro track is a bit more pop than what we typically cover, but it’s really going to resonate with some of our readers. The melody rises and falls with a fantastic driving beat. It’s the kind of track tailormade for existential meditation while dancing your booty off.

Jessie Jo Stark – “April Flowers”
-The lyrics of this track are really fascinating, twisting and turning from literal and abstract meanings. But the real attention-grabbing element of the song is the plaintive approach of the lead vocal. It’s a poetic style song delivered over gracefully buzzing electric guitars. It’s almost mesmerizing.

Amber Lamps – “It’s Not Alright”
-If you’re a fan of pop punk, you have to check out Amber Lamps. I used to be a big fan of bands like Good Charlotte and Relient K, so this track is right up that alley. Some might compare them to Blink, but I hear more of a Good Charlotte sound here. Anyways, it follows perfectly in the early 2000s tradition of power chord, harmony rich pop punk. Glorious.

Tally Spear – “Wrong Side of the Road”
-This is a wonderful folk song. Fans of the Staves and other authentic folk harmony acts will really, really enjoy this. It’s one of the most delightful singles I’ve heard so far this year, honestly. I’ll be looking out for this Tally Spear full length. I have a feeling it will have the magic of the Harmaleighs a few years ago.

Man About a Horse – “You Can Never Go Home Again”
-Call it bluegrass, Americana, or roots, but this is just an amazing track. Man About a Horse know themselves, too, drawing comparisons with Old Crow Medicine Show, Punch Brothers, and Trampled by Turtles in their submission. Those are spot on. We’ve been following these fellas for a few years now. The lyrics are just a little bit too real for some of us. Excellent pickin’!

Common Jack – “Electric Circus”
-I’ve listened to this submission so many times that it’s become familiar to me and I cannot figure out who Common Jack sounds like. Maybe, just maybe, he has a voice all his own. What I do know is that this track carries a kind of urban critique that resonates deeply with many of us these days. It’s deceptively existential and repeatedly satisfying.

Madam Tsunami – “Hold Me Close”
-If folk duos are your thing, you’ll love Madam Tsunami. Both artists are really talented, blending together a unique sound. Maybe the comparison easiest to make here is Jenny and Tyler. The intricate chord changes, especially, makes it a comforting and sweet song. As love songs go, this one is pretty complex and that makes it a lot of fun to listen to over and over.

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