Busman's Holiday - Popular Cycles
Busman's Holiday are brothers, Lewis and Addison Rodgers from Bloomington Indiana. Backed by a 21 piece orchestra, they've come up with a charming album, very different to what I've been listening to lately.
It's very acoustic 12 string, but the orchestral arrangements expand the songs beautifully. The vocals are like a cross between Brandon Flowers and Rufus Wainwright, more reminiscent of the latter. The stand out song is Make Believe, which as an addictive charm.
Lyrically excellent, the album reminded me at times of They Might Be Giant, I couldn't explain why, but have a listen to it and you'll see what I mean. Popular Cycles is an enhancing way to spend 40 minutes and a great listen. You can listen to and buy the album here.
Tinnarose - My Pleasure Has Returned
I've been listening to Tinnarose's second album a lot and it's great. Devon McDermott's voice is a fine thing indeed and My Pleasure Has Returned shows how adaptable that fine voice is. Strong arrangements including strings and brass provide depth and variety across all 10 songs,
Continual Praise should be given to the band for the variance, it would be easy to just rest in the Folk Pop world, but there's far more ambition. You should get beyond McDermott's voice but it's really hard. She can be Sandy Denny, Christine McVie, Stevie Nicks, Linda Thompson or Annie Haslam, but she can rock like a good 'un on the likes of Cherry Blossom Time.
I really don't want to make this just about the vocals, because it's not. As the album progresses, it becomes more Steely Dan or Fleetwood Mac like, but it's not derivative and it's also lyrically excellent.
This is a fine album. You should listen to and then buy it here.
Namesake - Borders And Fences
Atlanta's Namesake had their debut album re-released earlier this year as a Deluxe Edition and I'm still gobsmacked that it isn't better. This is territory that I'm more at home in these days, but I do get irritated by the Pop Punk label in general. The Punk half of that label just puts people off.
This is just great Power Pop. Riffs galore, the album just doesn't let go. and you don't want it to. They remind me a lot at times of a rockier version of Everything Else and The Downtown Fiction.
I don't see many around in the field producing better albums than this. Here's hoping for new material soon. You can find out more about the band here. The Deluxe Edition of Borders And Fences is available from the likes of Amazon and Apple Music.
Gurr - In My Head
Gurr are sisters Andreya and Laura Lee from Berlin and they've managed to come up with a more than interesting debut album. Riot Girl in it's feel, it compares well to the likes of The Slits, but also the J Pop of Shonen Knife.
Lo-Fi garage rock that's a really refreshing listen, not many are attempting this sort of thing at the moment and In My Head is a refreshing listen because of that. Amongst all the girl with guitar stuff, there are some great pop moments, demonstrated well by Moby Dick.
This is great girl pop with a touch of attitude. You can listen to and buy the album here.