Dean St. – “Kaleidoscope”
-Does it jangle? It jangles. Does it croon? It croons. Does it swoon? It swoons. We have a winner! I really like the way the jangle helps the croon and the croon swoons into the piano tunes. Okay, really, honestly if you listen to the first two minutes of this song, the previous several sentences all make complete sense. Then — the harmonies enter — and the track moves from interesting to “OH MY GOSH I LOVE THIS.” This is a song about meeting someone who makes you dream but also keeps you grounded. It’s about finding someone who makes you a better person, but not in a cliche movie “you complete me” way, but more of like… let’s learn to see the world with more joy and brightness. And bring a ukelele.
Canyon City – “Song for spring”
-If you’ve been around my folk coverage for any length of time, you know Canyon City’s name. I am such a sucker for this vocal style, composition energy, and consistent quality. Canyon City continue to bring this thoughtful, intimate recording style for folk fans. I don’t always love atmospheric music, but Canyon City does it so incredibly well. The track almost begs to be a soundtrack to major moments in your life. What’s new with you this spring? Maybe getting out of the house for the first time in a year? Let this song be you inspiration as you literally stop and smell the flowers. It’s inspiring, hopeful, and outstanding.
The Still – “Safer Days”
-It’s impossible for me to listen to this song without thinking of Ben Abraham. The calming acoustic style here is absolutely amazing. I appreciate how the acoustic guitar and the piano work together so well. The “take me back to safer days” feels uncannily visceral for me. It’s just such a strange experience to hear a song written by someone on the literal other side of the world that captures some of own feelings about the past year of transition. We’re not the same people we were back then; as we move forward, may we remember the sentiments of this track.