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Category Archive for 'Folk Rock'

“The album isn’t so much a change of musical direction as it is a classy revisioning of Vega’s trademark sound….Tales from the Realm of the Queen of Pentacles is a welcome return by an artist who has remained stubbornly true to herself and only records when she has something new to say.” –All Music Guide [...]

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“Pushin’ Against a Stone, Valerie June’s Concord debut, is the fruit of over a decade of dues paying by the native Tennessean after three self-released ‘bootleg’ recordings. While her music is steeped in various musical traditions of the South — blues, black and country gospel, soul, and Appalachian folk — she combines them so idiosyncratically… [...]

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“Whether moved by the documentary or simply interested in a one-disc anthology of Rodriguez’s work, the Searching for Sugar Man soundtrack is a thoughtfully curated celebration of this devastatingly underrated artist.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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The Mynabirds: Generals

“Opinionated and empowering (the title’s origin lies in an iconic 1963 photo titled ‘Generals of the Daughters of the American Revolution’ taken by the late American photographer Richard Avedon without ever coming off as preachy, Generals is a fired-up yet congenial high five of a record that keeps its retro-chic intact while allowing the band [...]

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“Martha Wainwright is an artist who has absolutely no fear of emotional honesty, a quality that has long figured strongly in her work…and she has plenty to open up about on her fifth album. …Come Home to Mama isn’t always an easy or cheery listen, but anyone familiar with Martha Wainwright’s work knows not to [...]

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“Singer and songwriter Sean Rowe is possessed of a truly singular voice. …The Salesman and the Shark is head and shoulders above the work of most of Rowe’s peers, and he possesses a strong identity as a songwriter… .” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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Bob Dylan: Tempest

“Fifty years after Bob Dylan’s debut album appeared, we get Tempest. Since he returned to recording original material on 1997′s Time Out of Mind, he’s been rambling through American musical styles — blues, country, folk, rockabilly, swing — that were popular before he was even on the scene. Tempest continues the exploration, but more urgently [...]

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“Singer, guitarist, and songwriter Randy Sparks had a vision for a ‘folk choir’ in 1961, a group that would, in his words, combine elements of the Norman Luboff Choir with the Kingston Trio, and…the New Christy Minstrels were born….This 25-song set includes the Minstrels’ signature tracks and is a fine single-disc survey of the group’s [...]

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“Warm, contemplative, country-folk pop that seamlessly blends the rootsy, sunset melancholy of Gram Parsons, the smoky, Adirondack sheen of Joe Pernice’s Scud Mountain Boys and the earthy grace of the Cowboy Junkies.”–All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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Quilt: Quilt

“Weaving a tapestry of float-away guitar sounds with Eastern melodies and languid, intimate vocals, Boston band Quilt lay out a modern take on psychedelic folk.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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“DiFranco sounds emboldened – fed up with consumer culture, war, and big corporations. Pete Seeger, who first made “Which Side Are You On?’’ an anthem, contributes vocals and a banjo intro before the song kicks into overdrive, replete with horns and new lyrics by DiFranco. She tempers her politics with tender, tightly held ruminations on [...]

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Hugo: Old Tyme Religion

“[Hugo] sounds like Citizen Cope if Citizen Cope aimed to be overtly sexy, or a jam band child who shares equal love for Jay-Z. Speaking of Jay-Z, Hugo’s good-timing, front-porch cover of “99 Problems” from the rapper — and now Hugo’s label boss, as this is on Hova’s Roc Nation — is the main attraction [...]

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“Lyrically, he’s never been better, with the heartbreaking themes of loss on “In My Dreams,” “6 Weeks,” and “Person I Should Have Been,” the latter based on a poem inspired by the last conversation he had with his late father, more than fulfilling his ambitions of “wanting to go a bit deeper and find more [...]

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Panda Bear: Tomboy

“Tomboy is a tricked-out, big-budget epic built for IMAX. Sonic Boom’s expansive mixing gives each sound greater prominence, and those sounds are some of the loveliest he’s yet produced.” –The Boston Phoenix Check Our Catalog

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Bon Iver: Bon Iver

“The deliberation and complexity of this record announces how ludicrously full of ideas Vernon is. He already has projects with rap, jazz, and experimental artists under his belt, and he returns to Bon Iver, Bon Iver bubbling over with creativity. It’s at once majestic and gentle, a deep breath and a sigh that declares Vernon’s [...]

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Tom Waits: Bad as Me

“Bad as Me, his first album of new material in seven years, is a tour de force of wise ol’ swagger and new-century blues — “that feel,” perhaps, as Waits and Richards sang about years ago.” –The Boston Phoenix Check Our Catalog

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“Sam Beam, the bearded craftsman otherwise known as Iron & Wine, is the very personification of musical consistency. As he’s progressed from murmured acoustic ruminations (2002′s The Creek Drank the Cradle) to full-blooded, rainbow-hued aural expanses (2007′s The Shepherd’s Dog), he’s gotten only weirder and incrementally more engaging. And when it comes to straight-up angelic [...]

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“High-lonesome folk, bare-boned Americana, and old-timey harmony numbers are the name of the game, and although the band’s use of vintage instruments makes for some fun Wikipedia sleuthing (what are “crotales,” anyway?), the spotlight remains on the songs themselves.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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Mumford & Sons: Sigh No More

Check Our Catalog “The tired snivels of the spindly-armed strummer have no place here; it’s an amped-up, bass-heavy, banjo-picking pity party made of the same violent stuff that once inspired a lusty 17th-century cleric to demand of his deity: “Batter my heart.” This is an album that knocks you over at first. But when you [...]

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Check Our Catalog “When sung by Ferraby Lionheart, usually in a swirl of acoustic guitars, tapping tambourines, and sun-kissed harmonies, the most lovesick lines drip with romance on his lush new album.”–The Boston Globe

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