Saturday, 30 April 2022

Man Behind Tree - 3

Released: 29 Apr 2022
Label: Subjangle
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German indie band - Man Behind Tree, are a recent discovery for me. Their new album is an enjoyable listen, recalling the best of 90s guitar music.   

The album opens with 'California Zephyr' which is catchy with an uplifting chorus. The sound is a combination of West Coast harmonies (Crosby Stills & Nash) with the slightly heavier guitars of 90s Yo La Tengo.

'Bird Survivor' is slower and more melancholic, with an anthemic chorus. It is instantly memorable like many of the songs here.  

Other highlights include the gloriously Summery '99' which has more superb harmonies. 'Just Like Everyone' has great pop hooks and brought to mind Teenage Fanclub. '86 Mustang' is very upbeat and fun, ending the album on a high.

A superb album, and perfect listening for hazy Summers Afternoons. Highly recommended.

Thursday, 21 April 2022

Tamar Berk - Start At The End

Released: 22 Apr 2022
Label: _
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Tamar Berk, from California, is back with her second album, after her superb debut last year. It demonstrates more wonderful guitar pop, with plenty of great hooks and energy.   

The album opens with 'Your Permission' a moody ballad about a problematic relationship. It is instantly memorable with later Beatles vibes.

'Tragic Endings' is upbeat and anthemic, with melancholic lyrics. - "I read the endings of books before I even turn to the beginning. My heart can't take surprises anymore. I'm losing faith in happy endings." 

Other highlights include 'Alone Tonight' which is superbly melodic, heartfelt guitar pop, with hints of Aimee Mann. There are some excellent guitar solos towards the end. 'Real Bad Day' is brilliantly catchy with a slightly heavier Punk edge. 'Just Be' is another standout and is more acoustic sounding with country vibes.

A hugely enjoyable album, and perfect Summer listening. Highly recommended.

Friday, 15 April 2022

Amelia Coburn - The Ebb and the Flow EP

Released: 1 Apr 2022
Label: _
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Amelia Coburn is a relatively recent artist in UK Folk. I was first aware of her song from 2016 - 'Song of the Sea Rover' which demonstrates superb storytelling. Her lovely ukulele playing and delicate vocals, make her stand out from contemporaries.   

The new EP opens with 'Please Go Gently' - a beautiful lullaby. The lyrics are wonderfully heartfelt and vivid. - "Relief is found in silver lined clouds to wash over you like rain."

 'Where Leaves are Blown' brought to mind the traditional folk of Joan Baez. 'Sandra' is a simple account of an ordinary day in the life of Sandra. The lyrics are thought provoking, hinting at sadness under the surface.

My favourite here is 'Oh Captain! Guide Me Home' - a brilliantly melodic Sea Shanty, with hints of Joni Mitchell. Again, it is superbly heartfelt and perfect early Spring/Summer listening.

A lovely EP full of unique, timeless Folk songs. Highly recommended.

Saturday, 2 April 2022

Sam Kogon - Sam Kogon EP

Released: 1 Apr 2022
Label: _
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Sam Kogon, from New York, is a recent discovery for me. His new EP has 50s/early 60s vibes and is full of memorable songs with great pop hooks and melodies.   

It opens with the superb 'Barbed Wire', which brought to mind The Everly Brothers and Adam Faith. It is vaguely Americana sounding too.

My favourite here is 'Find Out' which is brilliantly catchy 2 minute pop to enjoy on repeat. It had hints of The Traveling Wilburys.

'All I Wanna Do' is a wonderfully melodic love song and you can especially hear the Tom Petty influence. It ends on 'City Kidz' which has a slightly heavier edge with some raw lyrics. It is about the dark side of city life, drugs e.t.c.

A highly recommended EP, and it is well worth checking out his earlier albums too.