The woods are crawling with indies this week. Some of them are downright scary. But others are delightful surprises.
Love and Theft, Mark Cooke and Russell Moore & IIIrd Tyme Out all made a run for the Disc of the Day prize. But the good folks at Carnival have the winner. It’s Alabama native Adam Hood. I guarantee that you will fall in love with his record. He’s wicked good.
A Michigan fellow named John Maison is here with his debut single. He wins this week’s DisCovery Award.
MARK COOKE/Any Way The Wind Blows
Writer: Marty Dodson/Jennifer Hanson/Mark Nesler; Producer: J. Gary Smith & John Smith; Publisher: Nashvistaville/Nez/I Hope Momma’s Listenin/Black to Black/Ole/Sony-ATV, BMI; CVR (track)
—The track is superbly breezy, and he sings with earnest baritone authority. The song has a sing-along quality that sweeps you right up into the middle of it. In short, if this isn’t radio-ready, I’ve never heard it.
JOHN MAISON/Fast Enough
Writer: Kyle Jacobs/Joe Leathers/Kris Bergsnes; Producer: Ray Barnette; Publisher: Curb/Jacobsong/Fortune Favors the Bold/Song Garden, ASCAP/BMI; Big High Five
—The track is a rumbling, gripping, open-road rocker with a lot of “bottom” in the production. The song is cool, too. The mix almost overwhelms his vocal, so you have to listen extra hard to hear that he has the goods.
LOVE AND THEFT/Angel Eyes
Writer: Jeff Coplan/Eric Guderson/Eric Paslay; Producer: Josh Leo; Publisher: EMI April/Sunboy/Rockapop/Hate and Purchase/Cal IV, ASCAP; RCA
—She’s a flirty sinner on Saturday night, and a choir girl on Sunday morning in this merry bopper. The team’s Everly-style harmonies are totally excellent. Love and Theft was formerly a trio on Lyric Street’s Carolwood imprint. Now it is down to the duo of Stephen Barker Lyles and Eric Gunderson and moved to RCA.
JOHNNY SOLINGER/Livin’ Out A Country Song
Writer: Atkins/Stover/Maher; Producer: none listed; Publisher: EMI Blackwood/EMI April/Song of Country Wood/Red Stripe Plane, ASCAP; Red Dirt (www.reddirtmusiccompany.com)
—It’s another one of those songs that strings along redneck cliches. This time, the vocal bellowing is more irritating than usual.
CODY ROWE/Little White Lies
Writer: C. Rowe; Producer: Randy Miller & Eric Anonsen; Publisher: none listed, BMI; CR (www.codyrowe.com)
—He stays on pitch, barely. The track is so plodding it is like wading through molasses.
RUSSELL MOORE & IIIRD TYME OUT/If Your Heart Should Ever Roll This Way Again
Writer: Mark Irwin Abramson/Paul Austin Cunningham; Producer: Russell Moore & IIIrd Tyme Out; Publisher: Ten Ten/Universal, ASCAP; Rural Rhythm (track) (www.iiirdtymeout.com)
—Formerly a 1989 single for Jo-El Sonnier, this ultra melodic song is now a lilting bluegrass single with a high-lonesome lead vocal, slippery fiddle work, mandolin and guitar ripples, cool vocal harmonies and a banjo that skips along throughout. Delightful. The CD is titled Prime Tyme. If you dig bluegrass, you can’t do much better.
KIMBERLY DUNN/I’d Rather
Writer: none listed; Producer: none listed; Publisher: none listed; Up & Out (track) (www.kimberlydunnmusic.com)
—No wonder there are no credits. She’s a vocal catastrophe.
ADAM HOOD/Flame And Gasoline
Writer: none listed; Producer: Matthew Miller & Oran Thornton; Publisher: none listed; Carnival (track) (www.adamhood.com)
—The Shape of Things is Hood’s just-released third album. This track showcases the pent-up energy in his delivery, the punchy production work and the excellent song craftsmanship that is evident throughout it. I have given this guy favorable marks in the past, and I remain a fan of his fiery style. If you haven’t lent him your ears before, do so now. Essential listening.
T.J. BROSCOFF/Wrong Side Of The Tracks
Writer: T.J. Broscoff; Producer: Bill Green; Publisher: Bill Green, BMI; BGM (www.tjbroscoff.com)
—The meandering song could use some tightening up, but he delivers it with raspy conviction. Worth a listen.
ANDY VELO/Southern Thing
Writer: Andy Velo; Producer: none listed; Publisher: Suwanee Creek, BMI; Red Dirt (www.reddirtmusiccompany.com)
—Guess what? He’s a true-blue country boy on a dirt road in a truck, blasting Southern rock with beer and a babe. Wow. What a novel idea for a song!
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