This is what happens when I take vacations — My inbox got flooded with new releases … haven’t done a MMMM in some time now … so this one is packed with great new and a few classic releases.
Chris Thompson: The Road Ahead
Website for preview: http://www.myspace.com/coralcreek
Genre/Style: rock, jamband
RIYL: The String Cheese Incident, etc
Notes: produced by Billy Nerschi (the String Cheese Incident), includes performances by Keith Mosley (bass), Christian Teele (drums), Tyler Grant (acoustic guitar), Andy Thorn (banjo) and others ….
Matt Shupe – The Greying HeartWebsite: http://www.myspace.com/mattshupe
Genre: Folk-rock, modern, alternative
RIYL: Nathaniel Ratefliff, Arcade Fire
Notes: currently plays in Denver’s only trucker band Jimbo Darville and the Truckadours. … a founding member of Six Months to Live, and has played with Kal Cahoone, the Denver Gentlemen, and Moe Perdue.
The Heyday – Till We See the SunWebsite: http://theheyday.bandcamp.com/
Genre/Style: rock, alternative southwestern country-rock
RIYL: Gin Blossoms, Reckless Kelly, Roger Clyne
Notes: killer harmonies, tight arrangements. one of the region’s most promising up and coming rock bands over the past few years. ep produced by Christopher Jak at the Blasting Room in Fort Collins.
J. Shogren – Bird Bones & MuscleWebsite: http://jshogren.com/media-audio.php
Genre/Style: americana, folk, folk-rock
Notes: not expressly a Colorado artist, J. Shogren is from Laramie WY, but that’s close enough for me…. this guy’s music kills!
Boulder Acoustic Society – Champion of DisasterWebsite: http://boulderacousticsociety.net/
Genre/Style: rock, americana, roots, adult, dark
Notes: best and most solid effort yet – a new direction for the band finds them edgier and more “rock” than they’ve been in the past, while retaining their Americana type rootsiness.
Musketeer Gripweed – Dyin’ DayWebsite: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Musketeer-Gripweed/317290984151
Genre: rock, jamband
Notes: killer artwork and some smokin’ blues/r&b/gospel flavored jam highlight this local Loveland/Fort Collins/Denver based record produced and recorded by Jason Larson at Backbone Studios in Loveland.
Rebecca Folsom – Smoke & Tears (single)Genre/Style: folk, singer-songwriter
Notes: Rebecca sent this to me with the note: “Hi Chris, Here is a new song we just recorded called “Smoke and Tears” inspired from what we’ve all been going through up here w/ the Fire. We are all so thankful to the fire fighters! Our house is damaged, but still stands. We hope to get home in a month or so. Give it a spin if you like it.”
Jenn Cleary – Back to the WheelWebsite: http://www.jenncleary.com/
Genre/Style: folk, blues, singer-songwriter
Notes: recorded, engineered, mixed and produced by John McVey at Coupe studio (Boulder). I have to say I’m not a Jenn Cleary fan – despite the accolades she’s received *Telluride Blues Festival Solo Acoustic Competition Finalist 2010, *Colorado Blues Society Best Self Produced CD Competition Finalist 2011, *Sundance Film Festival Performer 2009, 2010, 2011. However, if you’re a fan of such local female acoustic blues pop singer songwriters as Julie Hoest and/or Vicky Taylor from the mid-90s, you might find a couple of songs on here you like.
Jubilant Bridge – PowerlinesWebsite: http://www.jubilantbridge.com/
Notes: I was actually pretty impressed by this release, marking off five tracks as “recommended.” It is definitely FOLK, and it is very nicely recorded by Steve Avedis at Colorado Sound studio in Denver and mastered there by Tom Capek. I especially liked that they included the wonderful Judy Collins song “Send in the Clowns.” All throughout, the acoustic and electric mountain dulcimer work was compelling and to my ears cutting edge for the instrument and the style of music.
Michael Adam – The Maybe EPWebsite: http://www.reverbnation.com/michaeladam
Genre/Style: singer-songwriter, adult contemporary, acoustic-rock/pop
Notes: of the four non-demo tracks on the EP, the most recommended are the artist’s recommended focus track, NYC, and track 1, Wind in the Willows.
Fierce Bad Rabbit – Spools of ThreadWebsite: http://fbrmusic.net/news
Genre/style: rock, indie/alternative, pop
Notes: uhhhh…. last year’s debut made it to the top of my list for best DIY rock album of the year. Three listens in on this one and they’re back up near the top again — this band does not seem to be capable of producing a bad record – seriously. Very “radio friendly,” I’ve noted seven recommended tracks (a lot for any album!).
Brad Goode – Tight Like ThisWebsite: http://www.bradgoode.com/
Notes: I realize that not a lot of jazz gets played outside of the specialty shows, but I’d like to encourage you to give this one a listen. “… Goode tips his hat to trumpeters past with reinventions of vintage material such as the title track, recorded by Louis Armstrong’s Hot 5; “Changes,” a showcase for Bix Beiderbecke with the Paul Whiteman Orchestra; and “Reverse the Charges,” composed by one of Goode’s trumpet heroes, Freddie Webster. The five Goode originals include “Summary,” a tribute in 3/4 time to saxophonist Eddie Harris, Goode’s late friend and mentor; and “Bob’s Bounce,” a hard-bopping salute to Delmark Records founder Bob Koester, who issued Goode’s very first album in 1988.” http://music.colorado.edu/2010/08/09/brad-goodes-new-album/
Lynn Baker Quartet – Azure IntentionWebsite: http://www.reverbnation.com/lynnbakerquartet
Genre: jazz, mainstream
Notes: From his bio: Malcolm Lynn Baker is the Director of the Jazz Studies and Commercial Music Program at the Lamont School of Music, University of Denver, where he directs the Lamont Jazz Orchestra, coaches combos, and teaches Jazz Improvisation and Composition class, Jazz History classes, and Jazz Techniques classes. Lynn is an award-winning composer, performer, and educator winning the 1987 Westside Composer Award (Minneapolis, MN), the 1995 COVisions Award for Jazz Composition, the 1980 Ruth Loraine Close award in performance from the University of Oregon, and the 2005 Downbeat Magazine award for Outstanding Achievement in Jazz Education.
RECORDS FROM THE PAST ADDED to the Library
Mary Stribling – Lilting Little Heart
Released: October 2009
Genre: blues, bluegrass, jazz
Notes: exceptional. highly recommended. Mary is one of our treasured legends in the acoustic music world.
Julie Hoest – Where I’m Standing
Genre: acoustic, folk-blues, singer-songwriter
Released: September 1996
Notes: recorded by Jim Ratts (Raven Studios), mastered by Tom Capek (Colorado Sound) Several very tasty tracks on this one. I know lots of folks along the Front Range who remember Julie’s work fondly. Can’t say as I’ve heard much from her over the past decade though…. Julie? You there??
Vicki Taylor – Out of the Blue
Genre: blues, singer-songwriter
Notes: notable guest players include: Mark Diamond, John Magnie, Ellen Audley and others … produced and recorded by Charles Sawtelle, mastered by Tom Capek (Colorado Sound). Listening to this in the background while multi-tasking there was nothing on there that made me reach for the “next” button — that in itself is impressive at my office LOL.