The end of summer brings with it many changes. Kids go back to school, football kicks off (the American kind), and the fall entertainment season kicks it into high gear. Check out some of these end of summer tracks that will set the mood before pumpkin spice comes along and ruins everything.
Elizabeth and the Catapult – “We Can Pretend”
-This indie pop track really jumped out at us when processing submissions. The lead vocal is really powerful and the full production is top quality. The lyrics evoke a performative element that seems all to real in the inauthentic life of the 21st century. The song resonates more than I’d like it to.
Elsmore Carey – “The Tyger”
-For a song about a fierce creature, it really does seem pretty serene. Then again, tigers are pretty royal creatures as well. Maybe, though, it’s not actually about a tiger? Hmm. In any event, this is a delicate and evocative folk song. You’ll listen to it more than once. I just know it.
Asker – “Yesterday”
-It’s not just the Swedish connection, but I really think Asker sounds like the Tallest Man on Earth. I really love this plaintive folk sound. It’s a little Dylan and a little Jackson Browne, but really it’s just wonderful. There’s enough soul and blues to make it resonate, but the strings and vocal balance perfectly. This is a hidden gem, friends.
Bronze Whale – Whethan vs Oliver Tree – “When I’m Down”
-Every once in a while we find a track that is actually popular among the rest of the world. Weird, right? This song is one of the only remixes we’ve ever featured. It’s definitely not our typical style, but the beat keeps you moving. The lyrics lack depth, but it’s the kind of song you throw on your device to keep you moving in a running or workout playlist. Get some.
Shemida J – “Forsaken”
-Just shhh and listen. Whatever else you’re doing while you work your way through this playlist just stop doing it. This vocal is going to blow you away. Absolutely INCREDIBLE. This is what we mean when we say we like soul music. Shemida J could stand with the greats. Her vocal soars and is filled with soul. She’s on our short list of artists to watch.
Mary Scholz – “California”
-I don’t always get chills when I find a new artist, but I absolutely did with Mary Scholz. There’s a purity in her performance that only comes along once in a while. The clarity in the composition is evident, allowing Scholz’s vocal to cut through the sound. It’s romantic and envigorating, truly a treat of a pop folk song.
5J Barrow – “Seagreen Dress”
-5J Barrow are the kind of folk artist that gets at why ETTG even exists. The music is pure and delightful. The strings tell their own story, while the lyrics lay over a different story. When those stories are told together, the listener walks away with all sorts of nostalgic and personal conclusions. I love that about their style. I would consider them a band “to watch” in folk music, especially with David Mayfield working on the production side.
Marie Danielle – “Hustler”
-You know Americans like to take credit for country music, which might be fair for the origins. But there’s no monopoly on the sound, so when someone with British roots takes up the mantle of traditional country music, it can produce a beautiful sound as it does here with Marie Danielle. The vocal is soft and gentle, laying over a sweet set of strings. It’s about a gruff subject, but it comes across with softness.
Boy Band – “Think Things Through”
-Ironic band name (check), great harmonies (check), joyful uptempo melody (check). This is a hipster folk band to a “t.” I really dig the sound and especially the harmonies. They sound like people that Rusty Clanton and Tessa Violet would hang out with. But I digress; this is a delightful track and I can’t wait to hear more from Boy Band soon. WARNING: Kazoo! 😀
Lauran Hibberd – “Old Head Young Shoulders”
-If you like pop folk singer songwriters, Lauran Hibberd is a name to know. She’s a quickly rising star, getting placements on all sorts of playlists. If you like to get your toes tapping to some optimistic British folk music, you’ll like this one a lot. She reminds me a bit of the magic that once pushed Ingrid Michaelson to the mainstream.