Lane Norberg – “Surprise”
-The calming acoustic guitar at the beginning of this song is going to win over a lot of fans immediate. The vocal harmonies are wonderful as well, making the song feel comforting like a warm hug from an old friend. The recording has excellent production value, particularly in the vocal balance between the two vocals. If you’ve ever been captivated by someone you met who makes you dream all sorts of exciting dreams about a life together, this song will connect for sure. I am a fan of the lyrics and melody, but the harmonies are the true magic for me on this one. It’s beautiful.
Ella Hunt – “Motel Blues”
-Picture a neoclassical piano basis with some alternative pop vocal elements over the top… that’s pretty much what we have with this song. From first listen, I was captivated by the contrast between the beauty of Hunt’s vocal with the distortion on the “second” voice on the track. I’m not entirely sure I understand the production decision there, but one thing I do know is that it creates a sense of tension in the recording. There’s a sensuality and lightness to this recording that really sets it apart from the numerous songs in this genre. Fans of Noah Gundersen and Phoebe Bridgers are going to find a lot to like about the risks taken on this recording. It’s unlike anything you’ve ever heard before.
Bree Rusev – “Burn out”
-It takes a lot of different elements to make a great song, but for me the main element is an excellent vocal. Bree Rusev has an exceptional vocal that is strong throughout the song. From there, the danceable beat balances nicely with more introspective acoustic elements. The dynamics between those two aspects makes for an exciting song that takes the listener through a range of emotions. If you’ve ever been in the early, promising stages of a relationship and wondered, “what’s to come for us?” then this song will be relatable. It’s a great example of a genre blend done well.