here they are:
"Back to You" by Twin Forks: Is it just me, or is "bluegrass rock" getting even more catchy than it was before?! "Back to You" by Twin Forks certainly seems to prove that this is so! With its proficiently plucked banjo strings, and its jovial, stomp-along rhythm, "Back to You" is one of those songs that's guaranteed to put a smile on anyone's face! Seriously, who wouldn't wanna just break out into song and dance during this one?!
"My Silver Lining" by First Aid Kit: I only heard three songs ("Blue", "The Lion's Roar", and "Emmylou") from First Aid Kit before I heard their latest song, "My Silver Lining", but those three songs were enough to let me know what First Aid Kit typically sound like. They are a Swedish folk-rock duo consisting of two sisters who use their honey-sweet harmonies and soft, billowy sound to melt the hearts of even the most cold-hearted people out there. "My Silver Lining" is like a "survival in times of trouble" type of song, contrasting dulcet harmonies with despairing emotions, which is typical of their material. In spite of their sweet nature, First Aid Kit often have negative subject matter within their songs, but their songs are just so sweet and lovely, I usually don't remember what their true nature is!
"Taking Chances" by Sharon Van Etten: How do you make a leap from the PJ Harvey-esque angst of "Serpents" to the Joni Mitchell-ish folk-rock of "All I Can", and now trip-hop in the style of Portishead and Massive Attack for "Taking Chances"?! Don't ask me how, but all I know is that Sharon Van Etten can do it! "Taking Chances", indeed! With musical style, anyway. The subject matter of the song is nothing new, as it deals with dissatisfaction in a relationship like most of Sharon's songs tend to, but the delivery of her passionate, sulky yearning on this song, combined with its moody, electronic musical aspects, does the trick for me here.
"Violent Shiver" by Benjamin Booker: Take the "chug 'n' pound" drumming of Delta Spirit's Brandon Young, and combine it with the mighty, forceful guitar sound of an old Chuck Berry or Rolling Stones record, and you've got "Violent Shiver" by Benjamin Booker. This is one powerhouse song!! Defiant and headstrong throughout, "Violent Shiver" is more violent than shiver inducing, but more of a righteous violence than an unjust one. And then there's the subject of who Benjamin Booker IS!! He is a young black man, probably not much older (or younger?) than I am, who is from New Orleans, and enjoys hardcore punk groups like Black Flag just as much as he does more "traditional" New Orleans jazz and blues. You don't meet (or hear) someone like THAT every day, do you?!