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by Brice Ezell

27 May 2015


Alabama’s famed Muscle Shoals has long been a goldmine for the recording of great music, particularly in the Americana, blues, and roots genres. For Amy Black, her ties to the town are more personal, as both of her parents were born there. In channeling both her own past with Muscle Shoals and her love for gospel, roots, and R&B, Black took to the town’s FAME Studios to record The Muscle Shoals Sessions, her third solo outing, drawing from legendary sources of inspiration such as Etta James, Mavis Staples, Wilson Pickett, and Aretha Franklin. Another key tribute on the album is a cover of Sam Cooke’s “Bring It On Home to Me”, the fun and goofy video of which you can view below.

In the press release for The Muscle Shoals Sessions, Black says, “Making this music has changed me as an artist. It’s altered my musical course and I’m so glad.” One viewing of “Bring It On Home to Me” and it’s easy to see that she’s right on the money.

by Brice Ezell

27 May 2015


Rachel Lynn, a powerhouse vocalist out of New York City, bolsters her take on pop with her classical training as a singer, something quite uncommon in the modern pop landscape. Such vocal gusto is more than obvious from a single spin of her tune “The Claim”, which finds her in striking form.

by Brice Ezell

27 May 2015


With a little Dylan inflection in his voice and a troubadour’s penchant for storytelling, Nashville’s own Woody Pines sounds just like the kind of musician you’d stumble across while walking down Music City’s Lower Broadway street. Pines represents both the vintage sounds of Nashville past and the vivacious energy of its music scene at the present. Having cut his teeth in traveling widely across the country, including with artists such as Old Crow Medicine Show‘s Gill Landry, Pines has taken a solid base of raw talent and refined it over the years, resulting in works like his upcoming Woody Pines LP.

Below you can stream the album cut “Little Stella Blue”, which has a particularly powerful story behind it.

by PopMatters Staff

26 May 2015


“Emergency” is a bouncy number that’s headed for clubs and the summer music charts. The electroswing touches are pretty sweet too.

by PopMatters Staff

26 May 2015


“Holding On” features house beats and jazz singer Gregory Porter getting his funk on.

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Counterbalance: The Avalanches' 'Since I Left You'

// Sound Affects

"Get a drink, have a good time now. Welcome to paradise, and read all about the 305th most acclaimed album of all time. An Australian plunderphonics pioneer is this week’s Counterbalance.

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