here they are:
"A Thousand Times" by Hamilton Leithauser: The Walkmen's lead singer sure has come a long way from where he started off! I never would have predicted that a band known for mixing surf and garage rock sounds during the 21st century would end up having a lead singer who was capable of making a song as romantic as this one! The old-time-y sounding piano and organs that dominate this song make it seem like it's from another time (that is, until the guitars come in towards the end). The message of the song is pretty simple. Leithauser has a dream that the one he desires the most was his "a thousand times". No matter how many times the message is repeated, though, (which it is quite a few times) it's still a very heartfelt sentiment, don't ya think?
"Comeback Kids" by The Jayhawks: Moving away from their more traditional country and folk influences, The Jayhawks have decided to have more of an "indie" sound in their latest song, "Comeback Kids". Here, Gary Louris and co join the ranks of fellow alt-country-cum-indie band, Wilco, in having a song that sounds like a cross between Big Star and Television, in which jangle-pop meets post-punk. Despite the rougher edges this song has in comparison to the 'Hawks other material, "Comeback Kids" is still sentimental in the lyrical sense. It is a song about reminiscing over a former girlfriend.
"I'm Still Here" by Sharon Jones and The Dap-Kings: Sharon Jones is definitely still here, that's for sure! In her latest song, "I'm Still Here", Sharon delivers a powerful blast of soul music as only she can! Drums, bass, sax, and of course, Jones' powerful vocals propel this song, which seems to be a tale of both survival and triumph. No other "neo-soul" artist sounds both so funky and so authentically 1960's as Sharon Jones does. The song switches between quieter verses and louder chorus sections, although "loud", in this case, is something celebratory and free of distortion.
"Love Is A Burden" by Jamestown Revival: The Beatles' "Don't Let Me Down" is a painfully obvious influence this song has, at least during the verses. On the plus side, though, the overall sound of "Love Is A Burden" is a step closer to a 2010's alt-rock-ish sound than the bluegrass-y Jamestown Revival previously had two years ago, so perhaps certain younger listeners might find this song to be an easier way to get into Jamestown Revival's music than "California (Cast Iron Soul)" was. Love may be a burden, but clearly nothing is stopping Jamestown Revival from using bright, catchy instrumentation to mask its lovelorn lyrics.
"Shut Up Kiss Me" by Angel Olsen: No, she is not the third Olsen twin (triplet?!) Far from it, really. Her music is like an unlikely cross between Tom Petty and PJ Harvey, and she's about as clear to understand vocally as either of them are (in other words, she's hard to understand). She sings "Shut up kiss me, hold me tight" so fast that you can barely tell what she's saying! At least it's somewhat easy to tell what it's about lyrically. It seems to be about an unrequited love of sorts, albeit as more of a defiant declaration of love than as a "no one understands me, I'm sad" statement.