Melinda Kirwin and Simon Rudston-Brown were once romantic partners but are now a musical duo known as Falls. The track "Home," from Sydney, Australia natives' new EP "Into the Fire," proves their strength as songwriters and collaborators; the sound is lush, rhythmic, state-of-the-art folk pop.
On "Lying in the Sun" Nashville, Tennesse-based singer Lera Lynn stretches out her dusky, melancholic voice for a dark but honest message of what it sometimes takes to survive in a dog-eat-dog world.
London-based alternative-rock trio Kypie channels its post-punk tendencies into decidedly romantic terrain on the fetching new single "Caught."
No American city is immune from street crime, but post-Katrina New Orleans has been devastated by so much senseless violence. Written by Carl Gustafson, "Another Murder in New Orleans" looks the facts square in the eye and expresses the human scale of the tragedy through the kind of performance that only Bobby Rush and Dr. John can summon.
Produced by Kenny Vaughan, "Goin' in Hot" comes exactly as advertised: a smoking rhythm and horn section fans the flames of the hardcore county sound for which Moot Davis is so well revered.
The lilting, string-soaked "Fall Out of the Sky" by San Francisco-based singer and songwriter Frances England has a flash of insight to share: we may all feel like we're falling sometimes, but we're all falling together.
Katy Goodman, aka La Sera, previews her forthcoming album "Hour of the Dawn" with "Running Wild," a crisp snapshot of the Vivian Girls singer as she (along with guitarist Todd Wisenbaker) races into the hard corkscrew turns of rock 'n' roll.
Faux Fur's loose and slurry new track "Rough Palms" finds the Calgary, Canada band doing what it does best: making jangly guitar pop with a dark, lo-fi, punk edge.
The Delines are a new project led by songwriter and novelist Willy Vlautin and Amy Boone of the Damnations TX, and including members of Richmond Fontaine, the Decemberists and the Minus 5. As heard on the luminous, country-soul track "I Won't Slip Up," the band's sound is as familiar and consoling as a favorite drink in a favorite bar, and as memorable and bittersweet as the hard-luck stories shared there.
Led by New York City-based songwriter Tim Barr, Silverbird celebrates the wild emotional swings of romantic infuation on "Hollow Heart." The singer may not feel worthy of a love-charmed life, but the band's gleaming, noisy rock surely is.