singer-songwriter

Artist: 
Arian Saleh
Label: 
Milogna Mischief

This album is delightfully layered taking influences from old classical violin rifts and combining middle eastern drum anesthetics, paired with an almost opera quality style male singer. Arian Saleh is a distinctive singer song writer and composer. This album took me by surprise. After peering at the lyrics I was assuming that I had gotten myself involved with a whiney type of male singer who would make sad angst indie type music bordering on boy band status. I was completely wrong.

Sounds Like: 
Ron Pope
Sounds Like: 
MIk & Scott - in unique inventiveness
Name: 
Ellery Page
Date Reviewed: 
04/03/2017
Artist: 
Rivvrs
Label: 
Rogue Fire Records

This is just a great album overall. It starts off strong with the first track "Ready to Begin" and keeps the energy through the whole CD.  There's some heavier instruments and rock influences on "I Want You," especially in the choruses. 

They also have a song called "Gnome Home" which is probably the greatest title for anything ever. Lots of instrumental breaks, does not mention actual gnomes :(

Sounds Like: 
X Ambassadors
Sounds Like: 
Jonah Taylor
Name: 
Taylor Brestel
Date Reviewed: 
10/23/2016
Artist: 
Regina Spektor
Label: 
Sire

This album stays true to the quality one expects from Regina given previous albums, most of which were great successes. Her still has an impressing varience of vocals in each of her songs, both in speed, tone and accompanying piano rifts. The lyrics themselves are also clever, poetic, and clear enough that with a few rounds around this album you could easily be singing along, hopefully at top of your lungs out of a moving vechicle.

Sounds Like: 
Kimbra, Fiona Apple
Sounds Like: 
Ingrid Michaelson
Name: 
Ellery Page
Date Reviewed: 
09/30/2016
Artist: 
Callenberg
Label: 
Bend Records

First impressions: folk-inspired, ambient, obviously Swedish. When I realized someone had handed a young, brooding Swedish man a guitar and a recording device, I assumed I'd be in store for a Tallest Man On Earth wannabe. But, not to take any praise from Matsson (I sort of think he can do no wrong), Lost In The Mail adds a depth to the downtempo acoustic style unlike the aforementioned contemporary.

Sounds Like: 
Working For A Nuclear Free City
Sounds Like: 
The Horrors
Name: 
Tatum Schranz
Date Reviewed: 
02/27/2016
Artist: 
El Vy
Label: 
4 AD

El Vy is a duo project with Matt Berninger (the National) and Brent Knopf (Ramona Falls/Menomena). Their album Return to the Moon is pretty reflective of both their kind of music to create a cool synth indie sort of feel. That being said, I did have to listen to the album a few times before I really started to like it. At first Berninger's voice with the different genre sounds funky, but gets better and better. The best example of the mesh is on the first track Return to the Moon (Political Song for Didi Bloome to Sing, with Crescendo) and track four Need a Friend.

Sounds Like: 
The National
Sounds Like: 
Black Keys
Name: 
Gustavo Ruffo
Date Reviewed: 
12/09/2015
Artist: 
Joey Cape
Label: 
Fat Wreck Chords

Stitch Puppy is the fifth solo album from Joey Cape, lead singer of the punk band Lagwagon and the experimental band Bad Astronaut. It sounds like neither of those bands. Instead, it's full of emotional vocals resting comfortably above acoustic guitar ramblings and playful piano melodies. Cape is definitely going for a J Mascis vibe here, as it's got a slightly edgy 90's alternative feel to it.

Sounds Like: 
J Mascis
Sounds Like: 
Elliott Smith
Name: 
Molly Ragan
Date Reviewed: 
09/22/2015
Artist: 
Juan Waters
Label: 
Captured Tracks

Jaun Wauters is just a simple dude from Uruguay who moved to New York ten years ago and will probably never leave. He's part of the Captured Tracks crew that romps around Brooklyn like they own the place (Mac Demarco is their beloved leader). His music is generally vocal heavy with simple guitar strumming in the background. Occassionally there's some simple piano and bass parts, but his stuff mostly has a "dude and his trusty guitar" kind of folksy vibe with a little Latin flavor thrown in.

Sounds Like: 
Daniel Johnston
Sounds Like: 
Frankie Cosmos
Name: 
Molly Ragan
Date Reviewed: 
08/30/2015
Artist: 
Courtney Barnett
Label: 
Mom + Pop Music

Courtney Barnett is a singer-songwriter from Austrailia. She gained a lot of popularity from her double EP which included some indie hits such as "Avant Gardener" and "History Eraser." This debut album surpasses that. Courney's lyrical style sounds almost like she is just rambling and coming up with words as she goes. She has a very monotone and unethusiastic voce and critics have even called her style "slacker rock". I find her lyrics in this album to be very very relatable. She includes so many details of her experiences in her songs.

Sounds Like: 
Angel Olsen
Sounds Like: 
Sleater-Kinney
Name: 
Daniel Clark
Date Reviewed: 
04/17/2015
Artist: 
Callenberg
Label: 
Bend Records

Callenberg is composed of Swedish songwriter/musician Anders Callenberg, who produces a folky, synthy, flowy conglomeration of songs on his second album, The Bailout Shop. I would argue Callenberg's stuff has a beachy, farm-y feeling (if that is such a thing), meaning it is very lax and filled with continuous sounds that just lull the listener. Track 7, Mad machine, has a nice, soft electronic vibe, definitely radio friendly. Tracks 4 and 6, You might as well know, and Twelve hours, respectively, are a bit moody and feel sort of like laid-back psychedelic-y tunes.

Sounds Like: 
Kraftwerk
Sounds Like: 
Grouper
Name: 
Brianna Bartos
Date Reviewed: 
02/03/2015
Artist: 
Lewis
Label: 
Fiasco Bros.

Lewis Baloue is one of those artists who, like Vashti Bunyan, resurfaced after being discovered by the internet. It does not surprise me that he did not reach wide-spread acclaim in the 80s, because this shit is wayyy weird. What you’ll find on this album are: fairly long tracks (shortest is 3 and a half min., longest is 5 and a half), ghostly quivering droney vocals, and sparse instrumentation (an instrument or two or back-up vocals). Allow me to explain the ‘Sounds Like:’ section. Lewis sings with a voice somewhat like Scott Walker or (early) Tom Waits.