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Category Archive for 'Country'

“Evans elegantly matches the oversized arrangements, matching each crescendo and hushed moment, while the songs are cannily constructed pieces of pop, sounding stronger with each play….Slow Me Down is something that is rare in 2014: an unapologetic, big-scale adult pop album, constructed with grace and care.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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“Nail’s gifts suggest he’s a blue-collar patriot, a working man happy to churn out anthems for the unsung, but he’s a bit more subtle than that, identifying exceptional songwriters and never succumbing to the good-time bro-country that is a golden ticket to the top of the charts….[I]t’s a grower, sounding better with repeated exposure, repeated [...]

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“[W]hen you’re talking about one of the very best bluegrass groups working in the 21st Century, just playing a set of good songs can add up to something pretty special….The Streets of Baltimore certainly confirms that this group is as good as contemporary bluegrass gets, and this music delivers a healthy dose of soul, passion, [...]

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Kingsley Flood: Battles

“This is a band that plays with a manic energy and is far more apt to snarl than to coo…..Yet even within the torrent of energy Kingsley Flood puts out live, the band distinguishes itself with richly textured songs….It [is] easy to understand why Kingsley Flood’s profile is rising above its Boston base.” –Boston.com Check [...]

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Dierks Bentley: Riser

“For a decade, every single Dierks Bentley release placed at least in Billboard’s Country Top 20, usually making it to the Top Ten….[I]t’s a sturdy, often absorbing record from a singer who is determined to be in it for the long haul.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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“Tyler Farr may indeed be Redneck Crazy on his 2013 debut for Columbia Nashville, but his definition of redneck doesn’t quite belong to the backwoods. Farr may not be a grinning, unrepentant bro the way that Luke Bryan and his ilk are, but he’s not far removed, not with his arsenal of songs about beer, [...]

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“Just in case the title of The Outsiders doesn’t give away the game, Eric Church takes pains to strike a defiant stance throughout his fourth album, underscoring his status as a genuine Nashville Rebel….Church has made the conscious decision to try a little bit of everything in his quest to be a savior to both [...]

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“This wonderful archival Patti Page release is drawn from recording sessions Page did for Columbia Records between 1963 and 1969, but then never officially released….[I]t amounts to a fair amount of material, and a treasure trove at that. This is indeed a welcome addition to the Page legacy.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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“Nearly eight years after Rosanne Cash last released a set of original songs, 2014′s The River & the Thread finds her in a reflective mood….[S]he’s learned to make every word and every note count, and this album confirms once again that she’s matured into a singular artist with the talent and the vision to make [...]

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“Prior to the 2013 release of 12 Stories, Brandy Clark was known primarily as a songwriter, and a good one too….In her songs, Clark is tuneful and defiant, happily celebrating the virtues of weed and rebellion, but Clark never comes across as a redneck….Perhaps she’s too subtle to be a stadium-filling superstar, but the superb [...]

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Jennifer Nettles: That Girl

“That Girl is Jennifer Nettles’ first solo record since she co-founded pop-country’s superstar act Sugarland. Produced by Rick Rubin, it’s mostly a collection of originals, co-written with some of the music industry’s most successful songwriters….That Girl was obviously designed to showcase her diversity as a vocalist and songwriter, and to cross over to a pop [...]

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“Parmalee is a tight-knit band consisting of brothers… and childhood friend… all of whom grew up together near Greenville, North Carolina, and what they play is rock, full of big drums and slashing, fuzzy electric guitar runs, overlaid with country vocals and themes, a hybrid that both contemporary country and rock/pop stations are undoubtedly happy [...]

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“Bryan sneakily incorporates all manners of modern sounds — not enough to distract but enough to make an impression, particularly in how the rhythms suggest pop and dance, how Bryan’s flow can mimic hip-hop without rapping, and those little Auto-Tune flourishes pop up throughout — which also doesn’t make the singer seem particularly country, but [...]

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“Like her debut, ‘Good Wine’ is faithful to the richness of Ms. Roberts’s voice, which is best put to use on traditional country numbers and blues-rock. Often on this album, Ms. Roberts veers hard toward Bonnie Raitt or even Susan Tedeschi territory, alternating between thick, lustrous crooning and tossed-off howls.” –The New York Times Check [...]

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“As a whole, this set is more diverse than either of its predecessors and at least as consistent….As evidenced by this first volume from season two, Nashville is a series that keeps on giving, both on and off the screen.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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Beachwood Sparks: Desert Skies

“Prior to the release of Beachwood Sparks’ 2000 self-titled Sub Pop debut album, the California neo-hippie country-rock outfit had already produced an album’s worth of material. Recorded in true DIY style in a small converted one-car garage known as the Space Shed, this would-be debut, titled here as Desert Skies, featured the band’s earlier six [...]

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“Florida Georgia Line… broke onto the contemporary country scene in the spring of 2012 with the infectious summer single ‘Cruise,’ a song that blended cruising country back roads and farm towns with ragged drums and layers of rock guitar….The duo seems poised for stardom going into the second decade of the 21st century, a time [...]

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“As a duets album comprised entirely of female partners, To All the Girls is… driven by superstar guest power but the intimate, relaxed feel is reminiscent of Let’s Face the Music and Dance. Such a quiet, comfortable setting is welcoming to a wide variety of partners, ranging from living legends Loretta Lynn, Dolly Parton, Mavis Staples, and Emmylou Harris to more [...]

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“Entering a long line of artists who’ve drawn inspiration from the Everly Brothers, Billie Joe Armstrong and Norah Jones serve up a unique tribute with Foreverly….They’re a good match. Jones’ suppleness sands down Armstrong’s ragged voice, he gives her grit while she lends him grace, and these qualities are evident throughout this lovely little gem [...]

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“The Devil Makes Three are a very special trio, mixing old country blues, gospel, banjo reels, ragtime, and back-country stomp into a potent brand of folk-punk that has made their live shows near legendary….[T]he band sounds like a feisty mix of the Lovin’ Spoonful and Country Joe & the Fish on a careening moonshine-and-coffee jag. [...]

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