here they are:
"Carter And Cash" by Tor Miller: Between the Jeff Buckley/Tom Waits influence of Tor's previous hit song, "Midnight", and the name checking of two country-rock icons in "Carter And Cash", I would have expected the latter song to have a more roots-y Americana flavor, but it doesn't. Instead, "Carter And Cash" sounds more like a danceable indie-pop song in the vein of Grouplove or Walk the Moon. Perhaps if this song became a single before "Midnight" did, Tor Miller would be a much better known musician, but that's the way the cookie crumbles, I guess. Breaking away from the romanticized bohemian view of city life that "Midnight" had, "Carter And Cash" is just a simple love song in terms of its lyrical content, nothing more. Any love song that name checks Johnny Cash has gotta be worth listening to, though!
"Jackie And Wilson" by Hozier: Back when all I knew from Hozier was "Take Me to Church", a lot of people were telling me "the whole album is good". Well it just so happens that "Jackie And Wilson" is the FIFTH hit song from Hozier's debut album, so the people who listened to that album must have been right, because there aren't many albums from the 2010's with that many songs that have become popular! This particular song's title is a pun on soul music legend Jackie Wilson, probably one of many classic soul musicians who influenced the unique neo-soul stylings of Hozier. "Jackie And Wilson" is a bit grittier and blues-ier than Hozier's previous hits, and its pun based title is mentioned in the chorus when Hozier suggests that his wife name his kids Jackie and Wilson and "raise them on rhythm and blues", so perhaps that's part of why the song has such an earthy '60s soul influenced sound. It's a bit surprising that a man whose musical gumbo is equal parts soul, jazz, blues, rock, and gospel has become so popular, but what a relief it is knowing that people like him can actually succeed in a world full of plastic auto-tuned pop musicians!
"Look It Here" by Nathaniel Rateliff and The Night Sweats: During the late summer and early fall of this year, Nathaniel Rateliff and The Night Sweats went from being under-the-radar musicians who played at the "Gentlemen of the Road" music festivals to alt-rock and adult alt radio sensations with the catchy, sass-mouthed "S.O.B."!! Where that song sounded like it could have been from the '50s or further back, "Look It Here" clearly recalls '60s soul, particularly Memphis soul musicians like Otis Redding and Booker T and The MG's. Will this song make as big a splash as "S.O.B." did?! Probably not, but Rateliff's spicy brand of blue-eyed soul is just as potent here as it was in that song. "Look it here, baby, I'm comin' home", Rateliff sings during the song's chorus. You'd better believe he's comin' home, too, and he's gonna make your sensual urges run wild with fire!