here they are:
"Another Is Waiting" by The Avett Brothers: Seemed like only yesterday that The Avett Brothers released a new album (though it was actually a year ago). Anyway, their latest song, "Another Is Waiting", is one that really seems to put the "rock" in "folk-rock". Part of the uniqueness of this song comes from how the instrumentation is led by a banjo (and not an acoustic guitar, as far as I can tell), but backed by an electric guitar and drums. That's right, DRUMS!! An instrument that is not typically featured on The Avetts' material, at least not prominently. Perhaps they have created a whole new subgenre with this song - "banjo rock". To accomplish all these instrumental feats in just a little over two minutes shows how amazing the band truly is to me!!
"Moving" by Travis: There's progressive rock, and there's progress-ING rock. Scottish indie-pop group, Travis, fits the latter category here. Their song "Moving" is all about...well...moving. Moving on through life, that is. Instrumentally, this song could easily be mistaken for a Radiohead or Snow Patrol song (though a lot of their material could be), but Fran Healy's distinctive vocals set Travis apart from such bands here. The recurring theme of going outside one's comfort zone becomes apparent in the ending lines of the first verse ("Home isn't where you are"), and third verse ("Home isn't where you stay"). Travis might not be "moving" from their typical sound, but they are making strides lyrically here, and that's a start!
"Shake" by The Head and The Heart: When The Head and The Heart debuted back in early 2011, their plaintive song "Lost In My Mind" won the hearts of many indie-folk fans, and the success of two more songs of theirs ("Down In the Valley" and "Ghosts") made them a household name among musically mellow twenty-somethings everywhere! So how does their newest song, "Shake", hold up in comparison?! The first few seconds of it make it sound noticeably different from most Head and The Heart songs because of the use of the electric guitar, but the piano that seems to serve as the central instrument in The Head and The Heart's music gradually makes its entrance shortly afterwards. "Shake" seems to have a similar rhythmic pattern to the band biggest hit so far, "Lost In My Mind", and perhaps The Head and The Heart purposely chose this rhythm for the song in hopes of making it another hit for them, and so far it's working! As for the use of electric guitar on the song?! Well, the band had their reasons. Though they don't mind doing folk-rock music, being likened to an "American Mumford and Sons" was not exactly what they wanted. The Head and The Heart desired to be a more musically eclectic band, and "Shake" is heading them in that direction so far!
"Sun Song" by Laura Veirs: Already, we have seen The Avett Brothers and The Head & The Heart leaning more towards the electric guitar than the acoustic for this week's reviews. Laura Veirs seems to have been the opposite. Her breakthrough song was the bubbly, neo-psychedelic pop song, "Galaxies", but every song since seems to have focused more on acoustic guitar than electric for her. Many of Laura's songs deal with an almost Neo-Paganistic view of nature and the universe, and her latest song, "Sun Song", is no exception to the rule (though the title of the song should make that obvious). This song "revolves" around the sun, so to speak, with every verse leading up to a chorus that praises how the sun makes many things possible. Neko Case also lends backing vocals to "Sun Song", which is interesting considering how defiant her song, "Man", from earlier this year was.