Sunday, August 30, 2009

Levellers - Letters From The Underground -2008-
(Rock, Folk, Punk)

From: Brighton, England

The Levellers have been putting out there brand of politically charged upbeat anarcho-Folk Punk since the early 90's. This is there ninth studio album and there are no signs of letting up of their anarchist, political and green views. Kind of a musical mash of The Clash, Pogues, and Flogging Molly. That electric fiddle is awesome!

Levellers - The Cholera Well

Levellers - Behold The Pale Rider

Levellers - A Life Less Ordinary

Groundation - Here I Am -2009-
(Reggae, Dub, Funk/Jazz)

From: Sonoma, CA

One of the best reggae bands in the business. 'Here I Am' is the 6th studio album from Groundation and features reggae legends Pablo Moses and the original Congos. Groundation continues to push reggae music into new territories, now mixing funk and jazz improvisation into their repertoire. I believe that musically this is the most talented reggae band around and lead vocalist Harrison Stafford has one of the most unique and cool voices in any genre. Groundation continues to pump out positve vibes and messages to the masses with this solid release and if you have not listened to any previous albums, well I recommend the entire catalog.

Groundation - Everyone Could Lose

Groundation - By All Means

Groundation - Blues Away

Groundation - Golan to Galilee

Friday, August 28, 2009

Bon Iver - For Emma, Forever Ago -2008-
(Acoustic, Neo-Soul, Rock, Pop)

From: Wisconsin

Bon Iver pronounced 'bohn eevair', it is French for "good winter" is the work of one man, Justin Vernon. He moved to a remote cabin in the woods of Northwestern Wisconsin during winter, alone for three months to record this album. The album has so much feeling and soul. A quote I found sums it up quite nicely, "It's the musical equivalent of reading someone else's diary. In code. Through a dirty window." Bon Iver sounds like dual parts of Iron & Wine and Jose Gonzalez, a very good combo in my opinion. I First heard my favorite song 'Skinny Love' on the t.v. show 'Chuck' and have been listening ever since. Enjoy and check out is new EP 'Blood Bank' as well.

Bon Iver - Flume

Bon Iver - Lump Sum

Bon Iver - Skinny Love

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Matisyahu - Light -2009-
(Reggae, Hip-Hop, Rock)

From: New York

A young Hasidic Jewish musician from New York City singing reggae songs. Really? You wouldn't think it would work, but it does. If you have never heard Matisyahu, you really should. Light builds on the reggae styles of his first two albums, however their are many more elements to this album. There is reggae, but there is also a very strong hip-hop and pop-rock influence at work here. This is the album that Matisyahu wanted to create and he finds himself edging away from what seemed like his comfort zone and into more daring territory. Light is the progressive sound of a unique artist, finding his voice and hitting his stride in this crazy music world. A couple of real standout tracks here.

Matisyahu - So Hi So Low

Matisyahu - I Will Be Light

Matisyahu - Thunder

Matisyahu - One Day

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Orange Grove - Fingerprint -2009-
(Reggae, Rock, Alternative, Hip Hop)

From: Netherlands

I have been listening to these guys forever. I first heard them on many many years ago. They had a few awesome tracks, but my favorite had always been "Live Up" a really good acoustic reggae cut. Since then I have always been on the lookout for anything Orange Grove. This is their 2nd studio album and the sound has changed a bit. They now have a mix of reggae and alternative rock tracks. Even though my favorite songs are definately the reggae oriented ones, they have not lost their ability to write a catchy tune. I know it is great for a band to expand on their sound, but I just find myself hoping that in the future Orange Grove will go back to their roots and wow! me all over again.

Orange Grove - You Decide It

Orange Grove - White Daisy

Orange Grove - Patience

Portugal. The Man - The Satanic Satanist -2009-
(Rock, Pop, Indie)

From: Portland, OR

Portugal. The Man has put out an album of very catchy and sometimes trippy Beatles & Bowie 'esque tracks. Vocalist John Baldwin Gourley uses his voice to catch the feeling of every song. From a whisper up to a high falsetto. I like this album and individual tracks more and more everytime I listen. The Man can play with a real organic earthly roots sound on one track and a jangly pop sound on another. There is an acoustic version of this album as well. Pretty cool band, Have a listen.

Portugal. The Man - People Say

Portugal. The Man - Work All Day

Portugal. The Man - Let You Down

Portugal. The Man - Mornings

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Rebelution - Bright Side of Life -2009-
(Reggae, Rock, Dub)

From: Santa Barbara, CA

Rebelution definitely did not switch things up to much to much on their sophomore release, but that isn't always a bad thing. The formula is mostly the same but that is ok because 'Courage To Grow' was one of the catchiest albums in quite some time. While Bright Side of Life' doesn't quite live up to 'Courage' it is still a good reggae album. Nice album to sit back and chill to.

Rebelution - Bright Side of Life

Rebelution - More Than Ever

Rebelution - Bump

Rebelution - Change The System

Stranger - Shelter From The Storm -2007-

From: San Diego, CA

Stranger puts out really nice feel good positive reggae vibes. The band is tight and the lyrics are meaningful. "
Based out of the South Bay of San Diego, neighboring the highest crossed border in the World, the band draws influence from the diversity of the people around them as well as each other. It is multicultural and musical diversity that gives Stranger a unique, yet true, presence that is turning heads nation-wide and abroad."
Stranger has a new EP 'Some Kinda Sign' out now and available for download.

Stranger - Tomorrow Never Comes

Stranger - Conditions

Stranger - Some Things Never Change

Monday, August 17, 2009

Kid Cudi - The Sky Might Fall -2009-

Here is another hip-hop track that I recently came upon and it grabbed my attention with it's nice beat and real spacey feel. Cudi is from Cleveland, OH and mixes hip-hop, rock, alternative and some r&b. His music is filled with witty explanations about himself and his life's journeys, with a twist of story telling scenarios e.g. outer space (where he hopes to go someday). This track and his new album "Man on the Moon: The End of Day" is produced by Kanye West. The much anticipated album is out Sept. 15th.

Kid Cudi - The Sky Might Fall

Sunday, August 16, 2009

State Radio - Calling All Crows (EP) -2009-
(Rock, Reggae, Alternative)

Here is the final piece to the "Calling All Crows" EP. The title track "Calling All Crows" is Chetro & the boys doing their thing once again. Awesome Rock with a reggae vibe. Great lyrics and some really cool instrumentation. This track is available for free download here. The album drops next month and they are touring so get ready for State Radio to blow you away.

State Radio - Calling All Crows

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

The Cool Calm Collective - Pauses & Progressions -2009-
(Reggae, Soul, Hip-Hop)

From: Gold Coast, Australia

Seven piece band from one of my favorite places in the world, The Gold Coast of Australia. This up and coming young band has secured airplay on Australia's most popular radio station, Triple J and played some of the big festivals around the country. This is some very slick and soulful music ladies and gentlemen. Very good vocals, writing, and some deep reggae rhythms make this a band to keep your eye on. The CCC is also quickly becoming one of the most dynamic live acts throughout Queensland. Enjoy!

The CCC - Damned If I Do - Damned If I Don't

The CCC - Pauses & Progressions

The CCC - Kings and Queens

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Dave Matthews Band - Big Whiskey and the GrooGrux King -2009-
(Rock, Acoustic, Jazz)

From: Charlottesville, Virginia

The new album 'Big Whiskey' from DMB is a heavy album. Both musically and emotionally. Founding member Leroi Moore tragically died before the release of the album, but it is nice to hear him jamming his horns here one more time. It took a couple of listens, but this album is growing on me. DMB does some rocking on this album with some soul, jazz, funk and just straight up rock tunes, but there are a couple of more mellow tracks that remind me of Dave's solo album, which are favorites so far. There seems to be more energy, passion, and groove than on some of the most recent albums and that is a very good thing for sure.

DMB - Funny The Way It Is

DMB - Why I Am

DMB - Time Bomb

DMB - Alligator Pie

Friday, August 7, 2009

Sebastian Sturm - One Moment In Peace -2008-

From: Germany

This young reggae up and comer out of Germany is on his way to do great things in the music world. The readers of Europe’s most important reggae magazine Riddim voted him Best Newcomer 2007 and only one Year and one hundred shows later he had arrived at some of the biggest stages across Europe. He brings a real authentic brand of reggae with classic songwriting. 'One Moment In Peace' is a fantastic addition to your reggae collection.

Sebastian Sturm - Be Righteous

Sebastian Sturm - Irie Place

Sebastian Sturm - One Moment

Monday, August 3, 2009

10 ft. Ganja Plant - Bushrock -2009-
(Reggae, Roots)

"Who are 10 Ft. Ganja Plant? They are a dub & roots reggae band shrouded in mystery. They hail from the great Northeast and are rumored to share members with another great reggae group, 'John Brown’s Body'. Their shows are rarely announced or promoted. In fact, like a yeti sighting, they seldom occur. Anyone who has seen them live, or owns one of their albums, can attest to the fact that no other band has captured the 70’s spirit quite like this crew, that 10 Ft. may be the best roots group in America."
One of the best roots/reggae bands around today. They are the masters of capturing that classic 70's roots sound. 'Bush Rock' is a well rounded reggae/dub excursion and features both heavy dub tracks and powerful vocal driven songs. For fans of John Brown's Body, Jacob Miller, and of course Bob Marley. This is THE ALBUM to get if you are a fan of reggae.

10 ft. Ganja Plant - Machete Strike

10 ft. Ganja Plant - Too Much Gun a Bust

10 ft. Ganja Plant - 10ft. Ganja Plant and Weed (w/Kyle McDonald)

10 ft. Ganja Plant - Got to Be a Soldier