Brand New Music: Rising Stars of Early 2018

One of the best things about running a new music blog is that we get to hear things a few weeks before everyone else. I know that people like to say they “don’t make music like they used to” but I can assure you that some people are still making AMAZING music. In fact, some of it is pushing the envelope of possiblities in music. Let’s spin a few here:

Joseph Knight – “White Wine”
-This is a fantastic pop rock song, full of energy and excitement. It’s about coming of age and developing as a person. There are layers of powerful imagery and a solid lead vocal. The whole musical experience reminds me of something you’d hear on the top 40, so let’s get it there.

Joe Dolman – “Close to Home”
-Thoughtful, emotional, and effective. Joe Dolman’s style is intriguing and plainly good. He delivers lines in a way that reminds us of friend-of-the-site JD Eicher. The emotional songwriting, calling out for home, is something that many listeners can understand. The acoustic work is wonderful.

Dolbro Dan – “Own Up”
-A mix of Willie Nelson and Woody Guthrie, Dolbro Dan’s music resonates in a deep, soulful place. It’s about life and death, about love and hate, about the sinews of human nature. But you know what makes this song so great? It could have been written any time in the last 100 years, but it connects today perfectly. This is timeless and true.

Tors – “Wilder Days”
-This is an amazing song in my mind because of the balance of harmonies and moving folk energy. It reminds me of bands like The Head and the Heart. That’s intentionally high praise. But Tors are cutting themselves out from the crowd of folk bands with this one. It’s a sound and style that’s bringing me back for repeated listens. They are definitely a band on the rapid rise!

Steve Moakler – “Born Ready”
-Back when ETTG was wet behind the ears, Steve Moakler generously gave us the opportunity for an interview. We will NEVER forget that. But you know what, we’d cover him anyways because he restores our faith in the country/Americana scene. This track has a positive message and is really inspiring. Get your toes tapping with Moakler’s authentic vocal and solid Americana melody.

All the Luck in the World – “Contrails”
-Every once in a while you run across a song that just gets you in a makes you feel something. You don’t always know what it is, but that’s how I feel about this one. It feels like a diary entry that I could have written at some point in my life. There’s an intimacy and yet a kind of mysterious imagery here, too. I enjoy the balance of guitar and vocals, delivering this curious lyrics.

The Minnesota Child – “Stay With Me”
-Indie folk music can be some of the most rewarding that we get to cover. The layered harmonies and optimistic overall vibe is just delightful. I’ll call it right now; The Minnesota Child remind me of what I initially loved about The Oh Hellos. There’s a core Americana style to this song that is quite endearing. The male-female duo blending is excellent. I can’t wait to hear more from them and until then, I’ve got this one on repeat.

Emma McGrath – “Love You Better”
-Engaging, melodically complicated, and deeply rewarding, Emma McGrath’s style is really a unique turn in the singer songwriter landscape. The crystal clear effect on the electric guitar makes ample space for McGrath’s impressive vocals to cut through the air. The song, then, has the ability to be both intimate and transcendent. The heart of the track is about loving someone better. Once you get to the pop-laden bridge, you’ll feel like dancing. In fact, you’ll feel a lot of emotions with this one.

Late Cambrian – “Hollywood”
-Intricate and fundamentally unique, Late Cambrian bring a sound that captures some of the best of 60s music brought into the modern age. The commentary on Hollywood and its culture cuts through this track like a knife. The unique instrumentation and vocal articulation make for a standout performance. It’s emotional and evocative in all the right ways.

Sean Christopher – “A Thousand Hues”
-This is an intriguing track from a talented acoustic guitar singer songwriter. The fingerpicking is clean and interesting. Beyond that, the artistic and thoughtful lyrics will have you listening closely. There are others who can and do accomplish this kind of sound, but for Christopher’s music to stand out in that crowd shows how accomplished he is. The person he is singing about has inspired some amazing art.

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