Courtney Barnett brings energy to the mundane issues of everyday life by adding rhythm, melody and wit to her musing stories on "Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I Just Sit."
"I feel like an old soul," sings Drew Holcomb on the new song "Tightrope. "I feel like a sinking ship." The world-weariness isn't a downer, however. It's Holcomb's way of facing the truth, which, like the friend and/or lover he invokes, helps him make it along the perilous tightrope walk of life.
As a child, Stacy was something of a budding show promoter, having once invited a group of girls to her home for a concert. Her uncle's band would typically play in her parents' basement, but one day Stacy told every teen girl in her neighborhood that the Monkees would be performing at her house.
The music of Canadian-American songwriter Neil Holyoak has traces of Americana chamber folk, but those traces wouldn't mean much without his wide-open, impassioned voice and his dreamlike way with a lyric -- skills that shine on the new track "Sidereal Sunrise."
Lera Lynn is a rising Americana star on the move.
The title to the new cut "Baseline" by Ann Arbor, Michigan songwriter Vincent Colbert describes both his theme and his pared-down but still intricately acoustic sound. "Addicted to progress and chained to sucess, we're holding our breath just to fill these shoes." Words to try to live by in these often maddeningly competitive times.
"I'm just a weird guy trying to make everybody happy," Ryan Adams proclaimed halfway through his set on Sunday night. A crowd had gathered near the front of the Peabody Opera House stage, and those trying to see the show from their seats seemed visibly (and in one case, physically) disgruntled. After some pushes and grumbles from the crowd, Adams stepped in.
Singer and songwriter Dave McPherson, best known for his work with UK alt-metal band InMe, demonstrates the power of his plaintive voice, furtive guitar and searching lyrics on the new solo acoustic track "Nothing Is Enough."