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Category Archives: Country

#albumoftheday / REVIEW: FIRST AID KIT: STAY GOLD

Following two much beloved records on the indie label Wichita, Stay Gold is Klara and Johanna Söderberg’s first major label release. The album was recorded at Conor Oberst’s ARC Studios out in Omaha with Oberst’s Bright Eyes buddy Mike Mogis in the producer’s chair. He produced the band’s previously album, 2012′s The Lion’s...
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#albumoftheday / REVIEW: JOHNNY CASH: “OUT AMONG THE STARS”

It feels so surreal, listening to this newly unearthed collection of Johnny Cash songs recorded with legendary country producer Billy Sherrill in 1981 and 1984. Like most of his fans, by now I’d simply thought that everything he’d ever recorded that he would have wanted released was already released. And so it was...
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#songoftheday DANIELLE BRADBERY: “I WILL NEVER FORGET YOU”


17 year old Country singer Danielle Bradberry won season four of The Voice with her gorgeous renditions of such songs as Taylor Swift's "Mean," Carrie Underwood's "Wasted" and The Judds' "Grandpa (Tell Me 'Bout the Good Ol' Days)." "I Will Never Forget You" is from Danielle's self-titled debut and...
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NEW REVIEW: MINDY SMITH: SNOWED IN EP

Mindy Smith is an American singer/songwriter who was born and raised in Long Island, New York but eventually ended up in Nashville pursuing a music career. Her music has been called folk, country, Americana, bluegrass and even pop. She’s often compared to Norah Jones and Alison Krauss. Snowed In is her second Christmas...
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#albumoftheday OF MONTREAL: LOUSY WITH SYLVIANBRIAR

Of Montreal mastermind Kevin Barnes is not one to make the same album twice. Roughly a decade ago he shifted from doing indie rock/trippy twee to electro-centric albums that often felt like twisted — but always fascinating — experiments. The first three albums from this second period of his career were especially experimental;...
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#albumoftheday REVIEW: BUTCH WALKER: PEACHTREE BATTLE

I caught Butch Walker live at The Sinclair in Cambridge, Massachusetts on the 11th of this month. It was my fourth time seeing him and he was, in a word, brilliant. Which came as no surprise. He’s been impressing me with his knack for super emotive songwriting ever since he was in a...
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#albumoftheday THE CIVIL WARS: THE CIVIL WARS

Well, well, well, this is an interesting album. When this duo — Joy Williams and John Paul White — were riding the surprising success of their 2011 album Barton Hollow, which won them three shiny Grammy awards, they kept insisting that they weren’t romantically involved with each other. In fact, they were both...
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REVIEW SPOTLIGHT: JANN KLOSE: MOSAIC

Critically acclaimed singer/songwriter Jann Klose was born in Germany and raised in Hamburg and Kenya, South Africa. He arrived in the United States as an exchange student in Cleveland. It wasn’t long before he was performing in the Cleveland Opera Chorus. He went on to perform in touring productions of such Broadway shows...
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SINGLE REVIEW: CHARLENE SORAIA: GHOST

Charlene’s 2011 release Moonchild was a truly remarkable album of singer/songwriter indie/folk music that garnered her more critical acclaim than most artists who released albums that year. To that end, she ranked high on more year end best lists than one could count. That much praise is always a lot to live up...
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REVIEW: RIHWA & MICHELLE BRANCH: GOOD LOVE

Japanese singer/songwriter Rihwa teamed up with American singer/songwriter Michelle Branch for this lovely duet, which Branch wrote after asking Rihwa if she’d be interested in collaborating, something Rihwa became extremely excited about, having become a fan of Michelle’s music when she was attending school in Canada.  The mid-tempo, guitar-centric track is entirely in...
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  • MOUMOON: I'M SCARLET
    MOUMOON: I'M SCARLET Release Date:  8/6/14 Label:  Avex Are you having a bad day? If so, moumoon's "I'm Scarlet" is just the song to elevate your spirits. Are you having a bad day? If so, moumoon's "I'm Scarlet" is just the song to elevate your spirits. And if you're having a good day, why not make it a great
  • LEO IEIRI: JUNJO
    LEO IEIRI: JUNJO Release Date:  7/30/14 Label:  Victor Entertainment "Junjo" is among her most vibrant and infectious tunes to date, which is surely why it's being used as the ending theme for the new Dragonball Kai anime series. Singer/songwriter Leo Ieiri's new single, "純情," or "Junjo," finds her doing what she does
  • PAIPAI DEKAMI: レッツドリーム小学校 [Let's Dream Shogakko]
    PAIPAI DEKAMI: レッツドリーム小学校 [Let's Dream Shogakko] Release Date:  6/25/14 Label:  MYRD But after listening to the album, all of my preconceived notions leapt out the window and crashed to the pavement, dying when their necks were all but shattered. This one really surprised me, not unlike half of the stuff I listen to in the interest of reviewing it for y
  • ZIGZO: FOREVER YOUNG
    ZIGZO: FOREVER YOUNG Release Date:  7/1/14 Label:  Japan Crown Forever Young is ZIGZO's way of celebrating their 15th anniversary. It's also a great hits compilation that's also noteworthy because it includes a re-recording of their 1999 single "Himawari." Who the hell are ZIGZO? According to Wiki, they're a Japanese rock superg
  • MOTOHIRO HATA: ひまわりの約束 [Himawari No Yakusoku]
    MOTOHIRO HATA: ひまわりの約束 [Himawari No Yakusoku] Release Date:  8/6/14 Label:  AUCL If very mellow singer/songwriter music is your thing... I know I review more female artists than male artists here. It's been that way from day one. Why? Because I like to write about what I enjoy and I was already an active fan of many of the female artists I regularly cov