This month we have a drum-party hit from Halcyon Drive, some deep soul-healing from Oh He Dead, and living poetry from Ellie Schmidly. Plus a bangin' anthem to self-acceptance from Leah Capelle.
Every month my expectations go up; the amount of high-quality music being released by independent bands is just getting bigger. The originality and passion living in the these young voices gives me hope for the future. Raye Zaragoza impressed us with her protest song Fight for You. We are hoping more artists can channel the seething unrest so that we can all emote together. It's better that way.
Baba Sonya exists as the creative relationship between Rachel Gawell and Mike Costaney.
Since 2015 they have collaborated as songwriter and producer; their track Chemistry is track #2 on this playlist. It is an unctuous and utilitarian structure of plucked strings and and dreamy cooing. It rolls by as if carried on reels of old cinema. It is a testament to the power of truth-finding between lovers.
Gene Evaro Jr sounds like the second coming of Curtis Mayfield.
Coming to us from Joshua Tree, California, his sound is a mixture of funk, pop, and soul. With the single Like It's 1965 (which is track #5 on our playlist this month) he drops some heavy dance chops and finishes with a really nice baritone sax solo. The bass line leads the way and that groove spreads like an infection. We all get some by the end; no one is safe.
Grit Harbour brings us back to the roots of Folk Rock.
I get that same alt-country, Americana, art-rock vibe that is used as currency in Los Angeles. The best part is the casual style of songwriting and the party we get from the rhythm section. We love the use of violin. Their alternative folk-rock sound comes decked out with luscious guitars and a tortured soul (track #3).
Nehuda gives us a club sound with lyrics in French and Spanish.
We don't have a lot of info on the band. Nehuda took two years off and is back on the scene with her single Chalala (track #12) in a collaboration with Rio Santana. The rhymes fly fast and thick; we love the syncopation and the Afro-Cuban influence.
Music writer and podcaster.