here they are:
"Damaged One" by Big Head Todd and The Monsters: The "neo-Dead" jam bands of the early '90s seemed to either be complex like Phish and Widespread Panic, or they were more accessible to pop audiences the way that Spin Doctors or Blues Traveler were. Big Head Todd and The Monsters are unique among all these bands in that their brand of jam band music creates a balance between experimental jam band music and pop based jam band music, and they tend to have fans on both sides. Now soldiering on into their third decade as a band, Big Head Todd and The Monsters continue to rock with their latest song, "Damaged One". Lead singer, "Big Head" Todd Park Mohr, centers this song around how, presumably in a relationship of some sort, he was "already the damaged one". With the upbeat rock 'n' roll sound of this song, though, you'd never be able to tell!
"Don't Matter Now" by George Ezra: In late summer of 2014, George Ezra's peppy folk-rock tune, "Budapest", was the surprise alternative rock radio hit of the year! For a quiet sounding musician, his song sure made a lot of noise! 3 years later, in the early summer of 2017, George cranks out yet another song perfect for the summer season with "Don't Matter Now". The central message of the song seems to be, "Do what you can while you can, and try to have fun." The laid back theme of this song, combined with its happy brass section and even happier "doo-doo-doo"s punctuating the middle and end of the song, make this one a can't miss song for your next pool party or barbecue!
"Time's Always Leaving" by The Lone Bellow: This song still retains the roots-rock feel of most Lone Bellow songs, yet it also sounds more upbeat than most of their material does! The question is, why? The band have been through a lot of changes since they last released an album together. Zach and Brian are now dads, and Kanine is now a mom. Additionally, in a true country-rock move, they also moved from the tough rock 'n' roll streets of Brooklyn to country music haven, Nashville, within the three years it took for them to release this song. Even lyrically, "Time's Always Leaving" isn't exactly a happy song, what with its depiction of time as a "cruel mistress". Yet the trio sounds happier than they ever have before in this song. Go figure!
"Whole Wide World" by Cage the Elephant: "Stranger Than Fiction" fans, rejoice! The song that Will Ferrell's character, Harold Crick, sings in an attempt to seduce Ana Pascal (Maggie Gyllenhaal), is now being covered by alt-rock group, Cage the Elephant! At the time of "Stranger Than Fiction"'s initial release to theaters, "Whole Wide World" was a little known melodic garage rock styled song by Wreckless Eric, who was sort of like a lesser known Elvis Costello or Joe Jackson. Yet now, for millions of people (myself included), "Whole Wide World" can't be thought of WITHOUT that scene from "Stranger Than Fiction". I'm guessing CTE were fans of the movie as well. After all, how else do you think they even know this song?! Matt Shultz and co do the song justice, retaining the original key, rhythm, and instrumentation so well that it'd be incredibly hard to tell this apart from the original! Now I just gotta wait for The Kooks to cover The Jam's "That's Entertainment" (also featured in "Stranger Than Fiction") and my life will be complete!