Category Archives: Music
Ok, I’m about to get made fun of, but I LOVE Vanessa Carlton. Most people remember her from her breakout album “Be Not Nobody”, an incredibly poppy album featuring the huge radio hit “A Thousand Miles”. It’s tough to start off a career with such success, and hard to break the stigma of being a pop-princess.
Luckily, Carlton has some serious musical chops, on piano, as a vocalist, and as a songwriter. Her latest release “Rabbits On The Run” has a great lo-fi, “real” sounding quality to it that’s refreshing to see in a young artist. Self-produced and self-funded, this record was recorded to analog tape in London, and features some of Carlton’s freshest sounding and most daring songwriting. If you still think of pop when you think of Vanessa Carlton, just clear your mind and listen to this record. It’s won’t change the world, but it’s a great piece of art.
And there’s no captain who calls “what’s your name?”
An army of one
It’s just me and a drum
Vanessa Carlton – “The Marching Line”
Break your misconceptions here: www.vanessacarlton.com
Ok, we should make something clear from the beginning. I’m into whiny singers. Billy Corgan, Conor Oberst, I’m into the whine. This probably explains part of my love for The Mountain Goats, as singer/songwriter John Darnielle can whine with the best of them.
The Mountain Goats have been around for years in one form or another, from lo-fi home recordings by Darnielle, to their new studio record “All Eternals Deck”. Their newest release is the perfect blend of raw and polished. There are very few overdubs or studio tricks, just a great sounding recording of real music by a real band.
Feast like pagans
Never get enough
Sleep like dead men
Wake up like dead men
And when the sun comes
Try not to hate the light
Someday we’ll try
To walk upright
The Mountain Goats – “Damn These Vampires”
Get your anti-folk on with The Mountain Goats here: www.mountain-goats.com
Fionn Regan’s 2006 debut album “The End of History” is one of the most beautiful records ever made. I can say that I’ve dedicated a serious part of my life to listening to that record over and over again. It features some of the finest acoustic guitar playing I’ve ever heard, along with though-provoking, poetic lyrics. Of course, what does anyone want of something they love? More.
I waited impatiently for new music from the Irish artist for several years, until 2010′s “Shadow of an Empire” was finally released….just… not in the US. After much searching I was able to track down a copy, and was completely taken aback by his 180° turn from the previous album. “Shadow” featured brash electric guitars and lyrics about mobsters and conspiracies. It goes without saying that at first I hated this record. However, after giving it a fair shot, I will admit, it is a strong collection of songs…. just different.
Which brings us to 2011′s “1000 Acres of Sycamore”. This is the followup record that I (along with many other followers) have been waiting for. It’s possibly more beautiful then his debut release, and with heavier emphasis placed on string arrangements and piano playing along with his flawless acoustic guitar work. His poetic lyrics shine from the very first song:
“Don’t be a stranger to me anymore
I’ll hold the lantern, put your heel on the floor
Rise up, sister
Rise up from the black ships that sail through the swan of your heart”
Fionn Regan – “1000 Acres of Sycamore”
If you’re into artists like Conor Oberst, Benjamin Gibbard, or Elliot Smith, Fionn Regan will change your life forever.