This weekend I attended FOCOMX, doing sound at one of the venues, Elliott’s. I got hit with a question that took me some serious brain power to answer. A number of people over the past couple of evenings have asked me what my top picks of the year have been so far. I found it hard to answer the question – partly because my brain was functioning within a different compartment (sound guy vs radio show producer) and partly because I love so much of the music I receive that it’s hard for me to pick “favorites.” However, that said, I do have a few albums in mind that I think are quite exceptional and worth pointing out.
Katie Glassman – Snapshot // FULL DISCLAIMER – Katie is a client of mine. I serve in the capacity of making sure her record gets into the hands of those who need to have in the media, and I serve as an ad hoc “manager” / consultant. That said, the record truly represents not only an exceptional fiddle player (2 time nat’l champ/6 time state champ), but also the sound of an emerging new talent behind the vocal mic, and as well a highly competent band leader and arranger.
Mama Lenny & the Remedy – Punches and Hugs // Big brassy ballsy bossy bitchy screaming r&b in a 2 cd debut??? I mean, I know I’m jaded – right? Can’t help that, but WOW did this band step up to the pump to make a point. Lead vocalist Laniece Schleicher hollers, shouts, hoots, and purrs with abandon, verve, and considerable passion. Producer/engineer Darren Radach captured an exceptional performance and had the good sense to NOT squash it with heavy handed compression .. leaving a TON of space in the mix. KUDOS to this debut!
The Jekylls – The Sweet Factory // Have you noticed that these three albums are all about the women? Yeah — can’t help it. Girls rule The Jekylls reach back to an era of 60s pop that is undeniably made for long drives with the top down. Sure to be a very popular band, and popular record over the summer season.
NEWS & NOTES:
Drew Emmitt “All That You Dream” from Across The Bridge (2005)
(N) Rebel Tongue “Writa Man” from Movin’ On (2012)
Wovenhand “Quiet Nights of Quiet Stars” from Ten Stones (2008)
(D) SAUNA “Wanting You” [single] (2012)
(D) Le Divorce “Under the Boxcars” from The Sting and The Light (2011)
Monroe Monroe “Engines Will Come” [single] (2011)
POPCULT “Things Worth Keeping” from POPCULT (2011)
(D) Mesita “Onward Upward” from The Coyote (2012)
Tennis “Seafarer” from Cape Dory (2010)
J. Miller Band “Holding You” from The Road to Elvado (2012)
Haunted Windchimes “Find the Door” from Live at the Western Jubilee (2011)
Aakash Mittal Quartet “The Street” from Videsh (2009)
Bob Lind “Elusive Butterfly” [single] (1966)
Katie Glassman “Honey Pie” from Snapshot (2012)
(D) Mama Lenny & the Remedy “Bossy (Bitch On A Cell)” from Punches and Hugs (2012)
After Midnight Jazz Band “Gee Baby Aint I Good To You” from Midnight in Madison (2010)
Big Head Todd & The Monsters “Please Don’t Tell Her” from Live Monsters (1998)
Churchill “Ark In A Flood” from Change EP (2012)
The Apples in Stereo “Nobody But You” from Travellers in Space and Time (2010)
(D) Blackout Beat Production Company “Keep On Dancing” from The Circus House (2012)
Kyle Hollingsworth “She” from Then There’s Now (2009)
El Toro de la Muerte “God Alone” from Dancer These Days (2011)
(D) The Congress “Whatever You Want” from Whatever You Want (2012)
Romano Paoletti “Can You Run” from Story of a Lifetime (2010)
The Dominant 7 “South Corea” from 14 Channels (2010)