Strong Performance from Kwesi Foraes

kwesiThis is such a soulful ballad, seemingly informed by the life and times of a troubadour; it’s got elements of blues and folk, sure, but you can hear the road weariness in the vocal performance of Kwesi Foraes. But, what really sells the track is not solely Kwesi’s performance, but the production elements added on, such as the strings, that really elevate this track to next level. Don’t think a single person will be able to find anything wrong with this tune. Keep an eye out for his debut EP, which should be coming our way very very soon.

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Intimate Number from Roman Lakes

romanlakesI’m always looking to cover the work of Bleeding Gold Records; they have an admirable roster and a unique style of releases. This week they’ve just put up a new digital single from Roman Lakes (NYOP). It’s vocals and picking, with a slight extra here and there from slide guitar in the distance. Listening, you’ll feel as if you’re there for the recording, almost hearing the buzz on the microphone in the final product. Go grab it from the label, and feel free to donate a dollar or three to the art/music world and its continued longevity.

New Guts Club Track + Album

gutsDidn’t Guts Club just release a record, you ask? Well, it was almost exactly a year ago, and Lindsey Baker is back at it with a brand new record, Shit Bug. She’ll likely be compared to a lot of other folk songstresses, but I appreciate the fact that she seems a bit more out of the ordinary, a bit rougher around the edges of things. I really think that this new effort will show us more of her unique songwriting, as well as growth; it’s going to be released by Moderate Fidelity Records on July 1st before she goes off to write another, I reckon. Lindsey will also be about town in Austin for SXSW, so if you’re here, keep an eye out.

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Another Andy Ferro Tune

andyDon’t think I’m just stuck over here listening to dream pop all day. There’s a special spot in my daily listening reserved for the like of Andy Ferro, offering a blend of folk and classic rock. Ferro’s definitely been on our radar lately, as he’s nearing the release of Muirhead (2.26). This tune’s right up my alley, bringing a bare-bones folk-inspired tune to my ears; I like the fact that it feels so stripped down, providing the intimacy one doesn’t always find in the modern musical landscape. Looking for something personal and quiet? This here is your tune!

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Orchestral Folk From Inti Rowland

intiWhat’s that you say? You want free music and you want it now? Well, you’re in luck because I have just what you need in the form of Inti Rowland, an artist from the U.K. who just put out a debut album of carefully crafted dreamy folk music that will wrap you up in beautiful melodies and then serenade you with strings. I’m head over heels for this song below, but the rest of 17th Century Japanese Aviary is pretty glorious as well and if you head over to the Bandcamp page, you can check it out for free, and then show your love by purchasing said album. Take a listen to “The Pendulum Swings For The Joy Of It,” which is a short little song that pretty much does everything right: there are swells of strings amidst gentle acoustic guitar and even a brief burst of horn near the end. Let Inti Rowland grace you with this song and then go check out the rest of the album. You won’t regret it.

Rebel Kites Have Beautiful Simmering Folk For You

11138157_452787298228760_3574937919359158764_nRebel Kites are a London based cinematic folk band that has spent two years in the making on The Witnessing EP. Now, two years is quite a long time to spend on twenty two minutes of music, but man, does it show. The track I’ve got for you today from this band, “Atlas Sky,” is masterful in every aspect: from its sweeping movement-esque nature, to its bluesy guitars and orchestral elements. All of these parts of the song envelop you in this lush landscape of sound, and the band transitions seamlessly from one part of the track to the next with strings and then build to a gorgeous crescendo. Once you fall in love with this song, head over to their website to hear the rest of the beautiful EP.

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Careful Folk from H

hH is the project name from Hector Andres Silva, though his music is quite a bit more intimate than the word “project” might lead one to believe.  There’s a gentle touch to his work, with a fragile vocal rising atop a carefully picked guitar line.  There are two singles here, but they’re actually meant to be listened to as one piece, though in two separate movements, all influenced by Silva’s repeated listening to Nick Drake.  Overall, the piece is titled The Night She Fell, and I suggest you take some time to string it below; it’s the perfect sedative for early Monday listening.

ATX Show Spotlight: Carry Illinois @ Cheer Up Charlies – Tonight (FREE)

carrWednesday March 24th will see the unofficial launch of indie/folk outfit Carry Illinois’ first full length album “Alabaster”. Fronted by local folk stalwart Lizzy Lehman, who has a slew of solo records as well as an album with the now defunct the Blackwells, Carry Illinois brings the best of pop rock to the soulful foundation of folk song craft. Carry Illinois will be supported by other great acts such as the Loblolly Boy and the Deer. Lovers of Americana, folk, and pop rock will not want to miss this show. Currently Carry Illinois has released two tracks for streaming on their Soundcloud Page to whet your whistle. Physical copies will be available at the show at Cheer Up Charlie’s on March 25th and the official release is slated for April 7th. Music starts at 9pm with Loblolly Boy, followed by the Deer at 10pm, and Carry Illinois will cap the night off at 11pm.This show is a free one so no excuses y’all!

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Beck’s Giving His Grammy to…Hayden?

hayI said it. I’m stealing a nod from an old friend who always called Hayden the “Canadian Beck.” It seems with his new work, that the Grammy is going to have to be passed along to Canada.  Surprisingly, Hayden’s career has worked in a similar arc, hopping back and forth between genres, but always achieving huge accolades when he takes the folk-laden ballad approach.  It’s also a track that takes a careful ear; you can hear the static of a guitar being pulled from the amp (or something similar) in the middle…it matches well with the bending guitar too.  Look for Hey Love to appear via Arts & Crafts on March 24th.

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More New Music from Santiparro

santiGOLDJust last week I encountered the music of Santiparro.  I was struck by the fragile quality of the vocals, placed gently atop these great little folk-influenced ballads.  On his latest single, that’s the case once again, though I turned my speakers up to the max so I could hear the tiny little details that lurk in the background of this song.  Clearly he’s made a name for himself already, as this song features that Kyp Malone chap from TVotR, so people are taking notice of his work, and I hope you’re one of those as well.  Look for his new album, True Prayer, to come out on February 24th via Gnome Life Records.

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