NewMusicFriday

Belle Plaine’s Malice, Mercy, Grief and Wrath out now!

Belle Plaine-Malice Mercy Grief & Wrath COVER

Happy release day to Belle Plaine’s Malice, Mercy, Grief and Wrath! Here’s what the critics are saying:

“If this album were a house, it would loom large, stand Gothic and you would find its heart in a foyer that holds a grand piano.” Exclaim!

“Belle crochets a wonderful mix of old country, classic western, alternative rock, and jazz swing to create a beautiful blanket of music that is an artistic keepsake.” No Depression

“Her new album [is] full of questioning, of the past, present and the future, exploring autobiographically-related themes of grief and loss though songs steeped in classic country influences.” Folking.com

“One of the most wonderful things I’ve heard this year.” Mike Bell, The YYScene

“Malice, Mercy, Grief and Wrath shines with textures of classic country music, including some of the hip jazz changes that were commonplace with mid-60s Nashville-produced records, while keeping an eye toward the future sonically, with parts that might not seem out of place on a Wilco album.” BeatRoute

Get it from iTunes

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Paul Kelly’s Nature out today!

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Happy international release day to Paul Kelly‘s new album Nature (Gawd Aggie/Cooking Vinyl). Check out the new video for “A Bastard Like Me,” which pays tribute to Charlie Perkins, the first Australian Aboriginal man to earn a university degree.

#NewMusicFriday: Jennifer Holub – The Reckoning

Jennifer Holub-The Reckoning [2018] COVER

Happy release day to Jennifer Holub‘s The Reckoning, a powerful and timely 10-song collection she envisioned from the start as a feminist call to action.

Working with co-producer Jonathan Danyliw (Murder Murder, Pistol George Warren) and engineer Matthew Wiewel, The Reckoning marks a major artistic step forward for Holub who builds on her previous Americana-tinged sound with a range of elements—everything from vintage soul to EDM—that adds up to a reflection of her northern environment: pastoral, cold and resilient.

The Reckoning does retain some of the Americana flavor of Holub’s past work, however, genre distinctions have less meaning for her than they ever have, and Holub cites artists as diverse as Mavis Staples and Zach de la Rocha as her primary inspiration for The Reckoning. “To me, artists like them represent the potential of music to affect change,” she says. “They have taught me how songs can inspire hearts and minds when rhetoric fails.”

Get The Reckoning at www.jenniferholub.com

#NewMusicFriday: Roxanne Potvin / Joe Nolan

Not one, but two awesome releases today!

Roxanne Potvin-All It Was COVER

“There is not a false move here, with each track standing alone as a subtly-crafted gem.” Exclaim!
“[goes] deeper into her personal journey while adding elements of psychedelia and neo-soul to an ever-expanding sound.” Popmatters
“After 2016’s roots surprise For Dreaming LP… this five-track EP is an even wider, wilder ride.” Bob Mersereau/Top 100 Canadian Blog

All It Was release shows:
Sept. 21 :: Ottawa ON :: Live On Elgin
Sept. 22 :: Toronto ON :: The Painted Lady

roxannepotvin.com

Joe Nolan-Cry Baby COVER

Cry Baby is going to take Nolan to some fantastic places. He just doesn’t know where yet and, probably, doesn’t want to.” VUE
“Joe Nolan will make you feel many things, but apathy is not one of them.” Spill Magazine
“There is charm in his chaos, a youthful maturity, a broken journey but a hopeful return.” Great Dark Wonder

Cry Baby release shows:
Sept. 21 :: Calgary AB :: King Eddy
Sept. 22 :: Edmonton AB :: CKUA

joenolanmusic.com

Craig Robertson’s Late Mornings out now!

Craig Robertson-Late Mornings [Cover]

Read Craig’s chats with Great Dark Wonder HERE and with FYI Music News HERE
Get Late Mornings from craigrobertsonmusic.com

For his third full-length effort, Late Mornings, Toronto singer/songwriter Craig Robertson turned to Cowboy Junkies co-founder Michael Timmins (no slouch as a songwriter himself) for production assistance, and together with Robertson’s regular cast of players they crafted a dozen songs that cast a light onto dark territory few artists dare tread upon. By choosing detail over confession, Robertson acts more like a guide throughout the album, shifting between scenes populated by characters teetering on the brink—as on the opening track “Drunk In Vegas”—or simply wondering when exactly the world passed them by—as on the heartbreaking “Decker Hollow.”

Late Mornings brims with such description of life’s other side, a skill Robertson has honed over the past six years since he quit a full-time job to solely concentrate on making music. “I had always written songs, but it was always on the edges of my life,” he says. “Now it’s central, something I do every day. My best songs come from real life situations or feelings, so I’m constantly pursuing that muse and jotting down ideas.”

Robertson also notes how his creative evolution is linked to how his band, consisting of guitarist/mandolin player Bob Strome, bassist Jamie Thwaites and drummer James Clark, has gelled in recent years through regular gigging. Indeed, Late Mornings was laid down virtually live at Timmins’ studio The Hangar in only five sessions, with many of the songs being first takes. Robertson later added background vocals, along with lap steel by Andrew James Barker and fiddle by James McKie.

Although Robertson may downplay the narrative aspects of his music, Late Mornings is much like a great short story collection, a work of art that one can become totally immersed in, and reveals new insights each time it’s revisited. With it, Craig Robertson has made an undeniable claim to be mentioned alongside Canada’s best contemporary singer/songwriters.

Jennifer Holub premieres “Island” video at Roots Music Canada

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Click on the moose to watch Jennifer Holub‘s new video, “Island,” now at Roots Music Canada!

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There are several definitions of the word “reckoning,” but the one that’s been foremost on Jennifer Holub’s mind is the most ancient—punishment for past misdeeds. That theme runs through the 10 songs on the Sudbury, Ont., native’s sophomore album, The Reckoning, a collection set for release on Sept. 28 that she envisioned from the start as a feminist call to action.

Working with co-producer Jonathan Danyliw (Murder Murder, Pistol George Warren) and engineer Matthew Wiewel, The Reckoning marks a major artistic step forward for Jennifer, who builds on her previous Americana-tinged sound with a range of elements—everything from vintage soul to EDM—that add up to a reflection of her northern environment: pastoral, cold and resilient, elements captured brilliantly in the video for the first focus track, “Island.”

“This was a very emotional project to make,” Jennifer says. “Some of the leads in the video shared with me that the scene they were depicting, or something very similar, had happened to them or a family member in real life. As for the male characters, they are all feminists in their own right, and as a result, they were all very uncomfortable acting in this. Some had to take some time to consider their participation, but ultimately they realized that their participation would have an overall positive impact. When putting out a call for extras in the restaurant scene, I was overwhelmed with the support. My extended family, fellow artists, and former kindergarten students all volunteered. It was a very touching day.”

Alberta roots-pop collective The Hearts return with new EP Sunshine

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On their fourth studio release, the six-song Sunshine EP, Alberta roots-pop collective The Hearts take the listener on a pleasantly sentimental trip up and down peaks and valleys. From ‘hit’-style pop songs to tear drenched ballads, the album maintains an allusive intensity between the sonic layers, plaintive lyrics and open spaces.

The Hearts deliver memorable pop melodies and moody folk harmonies that fit comfortably at dive bars, soft seat theatres or international folk festivals. What sets them apart is just how easy their down-to-earth songwriting rests against a backdrop of stylish cosmic textures — six standout musicians blending into one unshakable sound.

The Hearts are comprised of Jeff Stuart, Dwayne Martineau, Gavin Dunn, Christopher Quesnel, Brad Tebble and Alex Vissia, and Sunshine was recorded at their home studio in Edmonton, Alberta. It was produced by guitarist Gavin Dunn and mixed by American producer and engineer Sam Kassirer (Josh Ritter, Joy Kills Sorrow and many more). Everything you hear was written, arranged and performed by The Hearts.

The Hearts’ music has been featured in HBO and MTV productions, received international critical acclaim and charted on radio all across Canada. Their 2015 album, Equal Love reached #1 on CKUA Radio and landed on Earshot’s Top 30. They’ve toured extensively and performed at many international festivals and events including SXSW, Edmonton Folk Fest, Calgary Folk Fest, Interstellar Rodeo and many more. They’re revered for delivering an exciting live show where they trade, layer and cohere splendidly — mixing equal parts glitter and grit.

UPCOMING SHOWS
June 23 (Sat) :: North Country Fair :: Waterton Lakes AB
June 29 (Fri) :: Wild Oats & Notes :: Tofield AB
Sept. 1 (Sat) :: Waynestock :: Drumheller AB
More to be announced!

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