December 23 - 13
This is the last one! This review of Grey Reverend’s record will conclude the reviews of some of our top albums of 2013. We hope you have enjoyed reading these reviews as much as we enjoyed writing them. Happy Holidays!
Artist: Grey Reverend
Album: A Hero’s Lie
Label: Ninja Tune
Louis Armstrong once observed that “All Music Is Folk Music, I Ain’t Never Heard A Horse Sing A Song.” Satchmo’s wit eloquently dissolves the notion that music needs to be categorized and that is precisely what I like about “A Hero’s Lie” – the second album under the name “Grey Reverend” by D.L. Brown. Steeped in serious music theory and jazz improvisation (in addition to rock and blues), Brown was on his way to becoming a jazz guitar soloist when a neurological disorder called “focal dystonia” limited his ability to play such complex and intricate music. Undaunted, Brown purposely leaned inward toward a more direct subtle, melodic, thoughtful, thankful, literate side of songwriting. The highly complex became more accessible and sincere; jazz music became folk music;... Read More
December 22 - 13
Here is the second to last review of some of the PlayNetwork music team’s top albums of 2013. Stay tuned for the last review tomorrow! Enjoy.
Artist: Milk Carton Kids
Album: The Ash and Clay
Label: Anti Records
What I love most about the Milk Carton Kids is the simplicity of their approach and the haunting beauty of their songs. What I love almost as much about them is their carefully crafted live act and stage personas. That might not be strictly applicable when selecting your favorite studio-recorded album of the year, but once you’ve experienced the duo in a live setting their personality and charisma cannot be separated from their music. To cheaply convey the aesthetic of the Milk Carton Kids to the uninitiated, they could be simply pegged as Simon & Garfunkel harmonies with Dave Rawlings (Gillian Welch’s musical partner) style guitar playing. Which you might expect to just be some lofty hyperbole, but the thing is those harmonies are actually on par with the legendary Art and Paul, and Kenneth Pattingale could sit-in for Dave Rawlings on guitar any day.... Read More
December 15 - 13
Your Sunday just got better! Check out album review #3 of 10 featuring some of the best albums released this year.
Electronic Soul duo Quadron released their sophomore effort Avalanche in March. The Danish group, comprised of singer Coco Maja Hastrup Karshøj (Coco O) and musician/producer Robin Hannibal (also of the band Rhye) outdid themselves with this second album. Singles “Hey Love” and “Favorite Star” are catchy and fun enough to be instant earworms, and slow jams like “Befriend” and “Something That You Like” are smoldering burners that could make Sade jealous. It’s nearly impossible to listen any track off of Avalanche without moving a part of one’s body; tapping a foot, nodding a head, swaying hips or snapping fingers. Quite possibly, all of these things would happen at once, and that is the mark of a really great album.
-Heather Thueringer, Music Supervisor... Read More