Joan Osborne will release her eighth studio album, Love & Hate, on April 8th. After delving into rock, country and blues for her previous releases and touring with The Dead, Joan took a more personal singer-songwriter approach for her new album. You can watch the lyric video for the first single, “Work on Me,” below and stream the album in its entirety at Pandora.
Love & Hate Tracklist:
1. Where We Start
2. Work On Me
5. Up All Night e
6. Not Too Well Acquainted
7. Thirsty For My Tears
8. Love and Hate
9. Kitten’s Got Claws
11.Keep It Underground
Allison Crowe’s new album, Heavy Graces, was released today. In case you missed my rave review of the album yesterday, you can download a free, legal mp3 of “Words” in that post and/or below. The album is now available to stream in its entirety and purchase via the Bandcamp widget below…
MS MR’s debut album, Secondhand Rapture, is dramatic, bombastic, sexy, moody and utterly fantastic. The NY duo’s sound falls somewhere between Florence + the Machine‘s delicious over the top theatrics and Great Northern‘s haunting melodies with a little extra rhythmic oomph. Yet lead singer Lizzy Plapinger’s voice has a soft, throaty timbre that would fit just as perfectly with gentle folk music. It’s almost like Kate Rusby fronting a ’90s trip-hop band like Faithless or Morcheeba…basically MS MR are everything I could want in a band.
The standout tracks are the opener, “Hurricane,” “Bones” and “Dark Doo Wop,” which features the hypnotic refrain “as long as we’re going down…baby you should stick around.“
Other highlights are the sultry “Head if Not My Home,” the catchy “Salty Sweet,” the melodic “Twenty Seven” and the sweeping, cinematic, string-accented “BTSK.”
Secondhand Rapture is absolutely addictive and will surely be on my best of the year list. You can stream several original tracks and remixes at MS MR’s SoundCloud Page as well as below…
Blues singer Shemekia Copeland will return on September 25th with 33 1/3. With a guest appearance by legendary guitarist Buddy Guy and covers of songs originally recorded by Bob Dylan, Sam Cooke and Lucinda Williams, the album has both a classic and contemporary blues sound. Shemekia’s voice is so strong she could sing anything, but the blues is definitely her forte.
“Lemon Pie” is a fantastic start. Electric guitar seers the edges of the blues-rock melody as Shemekia wails about the poor man’s (and the struggling middle class’) plight.
A slowed down, blues revamp of Lucinda Williams’ “Can’t Let Go” follows. It’s a solid cover, but pales in comparison to Lucinda’s original. Of course, Car Wheels on a Gravel Road is such a classic album, it’s difficult for any artist to match.
Buddy Guy lends his exquisite guitar to the battered woman’s escape anthem “Ain’t Gonna Be Your Tattoo.” I had the privilege of seeing Buddy and Shemekia perform at Mountain Stage a few years ago and it was one of the best concerts of my life. The song is the perfect pairing of these two colossal talents.
“A Woman” is a sultry blues ballad and “I’ll Sing the Blues” rumbles and sways beneath Shemekia’s substantial howl.
The latter half of the album is pleasant but nothing really stands out until the finale. Shemekia’s fierce voice drops to a pretty hush on a simple but very lovely cover of Dylan’s “I’ll Be Your Baby Tonight.”