ALLIGATOR – “That’s That”
The transparent musical project of singer-songwriter/producer Dylan Thomas (also known as Tom Death) is an exploration of brokenness and monotony. The track has a dark folk feel with a bite of vulnerability we find refreshing. The sound plays out like a stroll through the desert. Thomas’ strengths are many on this criminally short exposition. His songwriting – knowing when to speak and when to play – is on par with more established artists.
Emma Golden – “Something Good (feat. Annie Schindel)
The immensely talented young singer songwriter’s talent is perfectly embodied on this this genre bending tune. Her strength is her pop sensibilities with both lyrics and sound, but this never hampers her. Unafraid to explore sound and space, the tune evolves into something else entirely until finishing with something akin to an indie radio breakout.
Town Meeting – “West of Seattle”
We have all been burned by the folk revival. It started out with great intentions but slowly became a machine for labels and plastic songwriting. However, when we find acts like Town Meeting, we find hope again. The quintet is prepping their new EP Geography: Part 1 (July 28) and if this track is any indication, we should be in for intentional, relatable, and deeply inspired tracks that will help us manage through the plethora of folk pop acts.
Jesse Konrad – “Would You Want It Anyway?”
Following the breakup of his band Fischer Kings, Jesse created his own sound that took elements from his previous act and made it even more personal. His Bright Eyes style vocals sound like the byproduct of Conor Oberst singing on a Best Coast album. He beautifully tells a story that touches on everything from relationships, American location, and longing. The result is a breathtaking mix of contemplative lyrics with an upbeat sound you can jam to. The expertise of Konrad is much appreciated and shines through this imaginative track.
B.R. Lively – “The Blue”
The veteran songwriter has repurposed his personal trials for something of the highest art for his latest project. On his latest release, listeners are invited into his transformative sound like an overdue cup of coffee with a friend. His voice is an extraordinary talent and proof of artistic integrity. If you like the vocal range of a David Gray, this will speak to your soul. If laid back alt-country vibes are more your thing, you will find much comfort in how Lively lets the song develop without feeling a need to fill space. This is one of those rare tracks that are able to change countenance and revive even the weariest of hearts.
Johnny Stimson – “Honeymoon”
Stimson has a definite chill pop vibe a la John Mayer. “Honeymoon” is his new single off his “Today” EP that is his second installment of his three EP project. The track is personal for the newly married songwriter who presented this for his bride recently. While many pop songs can be too nostalgic and dry, this one flirts with the line but never over indulges. It helps that the artist is extremely gifted at creating a sound that can hold its own without lyrics, but thankfully does not need to.