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by PopMatters Staff

23 May 2016


Photo: Holly J. Schumacher

East Tennessee’s Derik Hultquist did what lots of musical dreamers do… he headed straight to Nashville after graduation. Like most, he worked the odd jobs to support himself while working hard on developing his songwriting as well as discovering his true singing voice. Hultquist has released a number of EPs over the years as his music progressed and now, after 10 years in Nashville, he is set to release his full-length debut album, Southern Iron, coming June 17th via Carnival Music/Thirty Tigers. Southern Iron is a well-crafted set of Hultquist’s original songs living in the country/pop sphere with songs that occasionally feature elements of psychedelic and roots rock.

by PopMatters Staff

19 May 2016


Australia’s CW Stoneking grew up in a remote part of the Northern Territory, but he fell in love early with gospel music, blues and ragtime and those first loves have been with him ever since. Stoneking notes that when he first heard blues he “thought it was kinda funny music because it was so deconstructed and not really adhering to any rules that I’d been told music [should] fit into.” Robert Johnson and Son House are among Stoneking’s influences, which makes sense given Stoneking’s raw, unvarnished, passionate form of the blues. That rawness has always been a part of country blues at least and it melds well with Stoneking’s somwehat punk sensibility.

by Sarah Zupko

19 May 2016


Photo: Paul Janovitz

Boston singer-songwriter Mark Erelli has a new critically acclaimed album out, For a Song, about which Jonathan Frahm said, “Erelli crafts yet another easy listen, ethereal and sincere in a style between both his composition and delivery that has previously had his work compared to such seminal artists as Paul Simon and Jackson Browne. Not unlike the aforementioned, Erelli flexes his songwriter’s muscle and proves his timelessness again and again, making no exception in For a Song.”

by Eric Risch

19 May 2016


Unfolding like a time-lapse night terror, “Infestation” from Lexington, Kentucky quartet Bear Medicine is the soundtrack to anxious pre-dawn hours. Featuring flute and cello, the band’s 2014 debut LP, The Moon Has Been All My Life, is filled with layers of sound and lush instrumentation that orbit a modulated celestial sphere where beauty resides amongst the macabre.

by Sarah Zupko

17 May 2016


Photo: Livingston Jones and Barbara Takenaga

Darlingside‘s most striking feature is those pristine, crystalline harmonies that the four-member band spin like the finest of weavers. They seduce and pull you into their stunningly beautiful musical sphere. In fact, the harmony singing is so good that Darlingside may be today’s Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young. Their latest single/video is for “White Horses”, an utterly gorgeous song that will have you hunting down their recent release Birds Say.

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