Canadian singer-songwriter Lisette Xavier’s song “Shoe Collector” is a very nice bit o’ piano pop. Check it out…
Miamigo’s “Opinions” is a delightfully dark, modern interpretation of 80s synth-pop. You can download a free, legal mp3 of the song at Soundcloud or Bandcamp…
Queen Esther‘s new album, The Other Side, is unlike anything else you’ve heard in recent years…or possibly ever. Queen Esther calls it her “Black Americana album,” often setting her soulful vocals atop classic country-inspired Americana melodies replete with rustic strings.
The album’s first single “Oh, Sun” and especially the track “I’ve Come Undone Again” are prime examples of Queen Esther’s signature “Black Americana” sound. An alternative take of the latter song is included as a bonus track.
Queen Esther’s cover of “My Big Iron Skillet” is by far my favorite track. A bluesy, classic country contemporary of Loretta Lynn’s “Don’t Come Home a Drinkin’ (With Lovin’ on Your Mind),” the Wanda Jackson song is the perfect fit for Queen Esther’s voice and musical style.
The album also features two covers of the Steve Miller Band’s “Jet Airliner” – my favorite being the funkier bonus track version.
The beautiful finale “I Feel Like Going Home” is another standout track. As I said when Queen Esther first released the song two years ago, hers is the most moving cover of the song I’ve heard since the Inner Voices choir performed it on My So-Called Life twenty years ago.
Migration is the first in a projected 5-part series by Lykanthea. It’s a dreamily ambient collection of songs wherein ethereal vocals swim in the enticing sound of Lykanthea’s complex score. For me, the electronic beat of “Hand and Eye” seemed out of place in the otherwise mellow set. However, Migration is at times reminiscent of the Julee Cruise/Angelo Badalamenti Twin Peaks soundtrack and one of the most interesting collections I’ve heard this year.