Thursday, August 3, 2017

CD/Vinyl Review: New Music From Sinners & Saints, Birdseed, John Lafayette Ramey, James Parenti, Heather Kenney & Rising Appalachia

The duo of Perry Fowler and Mark Baran recently released their second full-length album as Sinners & Saints, titled "On The Other Side" and they will be heading out on the road beginning August 1st. Their 2-month tour crosses the U.S., but not before hitting all their stops in New England. The new 10-song release begins with the slow-moving, country-folk ballad "Up Like The Sun Down Like The Rain" as the harmonizing between Fowler and Baran draw similarities to The Avett Brothers. The tempo picks up with the knee-slapping rhythm of "Whiskey Drinking" as their music carries a classic, nostalgic feel. They fill their music with the fun and swinging lyrics as in "Old Bones" and "Music Man." They album finishes up with the steady pace of "The Way" and the campfire sing-along of "Ready To Go" as you can't wait for more from Sinners & Saints. For a complete list of live dates and to find out more about their latest release "On The Other Side," please visit sinnersandsaintsmusic.com.

The American rock band Birdseed recently released a new 10" vinyl EP titled "Not Out Of Time." The band will be touring this fall and they wanted to get more music out to their fans. This new 5-song EP begins with the up-tempo title song as lead singer Kerry Landreth leads the band on this mainstream gem. They continue with the smooth, horn-infused melody of "Trip Around The Sun," which sounds like it came from the 10,000 Maniacs catalog. Their new short release wraps up with the fun, youthful positiveness of "We Can Do It," which features Kerry's daughter on vocals and southern blues-rock groove of "More Than I Needed To Know." To find out more about Birdseed and their latest vinyl-only release "Not Out Of Time," please visit birdseedband.com.

Arriving October 20th is the new studio album from singer/songwriter John Lafayette Ramey titled "Exposition Lines." Ramey has become very familiar with the Los Angeles music scene and played sideman to the likes of country artists Austin Hanks and Grant Langston. His new solo release features 10 songs, beginning with the punk-like energy of "Cheap Rent" that shows off Ramey's more rocking side. Then he slows down for the acoustic folk ballad "Guadalupe," before the build up of the sixties-type pop gem "Jenny." He wraps up his new release with the country blues of "Sad Song Sad Town" and the Willie Nelson inspired ballad "Still With Me" as he pulls off his best classic country vocals. To find out more about John Lafayette Ramey and his latest release "Exposition Lines," please visit johnlafayetteramey.com.

Singer/songwriter James Parenti returns with his new studio album titled "You Look Like Hell." It features a dozen tracks, beginning with the quiet, melodic tone of "Brownout" as Parenti's vocals are up front for you to easily follow. He picks the tempo up for the steady pace of "Drove All Night" as his words are poetry among the folk/rock backdrop. He treads slowly with the gentle touch of "I Know" and "Nothing Again" as his vocals deliver strong emotions. His new release finishes with the melodic tones of "You Do, You Can," the ambient, later-day Pink Floydian feel of "What Are We Gonna Do" and the slow, bluesy music of "Hope That You Know." James Parenti has an album release party on August 16th in New York. To find out more about his new album "You Look Like Hell," please visit jamesparentimusic.com.

From North Carolina comes the debut release from singer/songwriter Heather Kenney. It features 3 tracks of acoustic-based country/folk music, beginning with the quick strumming of "Whole Life Of You" as you instantly notice Heather's sweet, angelic vocals. The addition of the ukulele on "Real World" allows Heather's vocals to soar once again, before finishing her new short release with the quietly relaxed acoustic feel of "Enough." To find out more about Heather Kenney and her debut EP, please visit heatherkenney.com.

The sister-led roots band Rising Appalachia is releasing their first live album simply titled "Alive" on September 29th. It was culled together from two years of shows and gives us a raw, natural insight into the meaningful, folk/Americana music that sisters Leah and Chloe create onstage. Their new 11-song album begins with the beautiful harmonizing of "Lean In" as you instantly hear the chemistry between the two. They start off "Cripple Creek" with the quick, bluegrass strumming, before changing tempos to a grinding shuffle rhythm. They sing about earthy remedies during the nearly nine-minute "Medicine," then they get your hips shaking with the Latin rhythm of "Closer To The Edge." They use their wonderful harmonizing to strike emotion in "Mississippi," before finishing their new release with the funky beats of "Occupy" and the bluegrass/folk appeal of "Stromboli," which includes lines from "Amazing Grace," as their fans show their appreciation." Rising Appalachia are heading over to Europe for shows in August and September, before returning to the States for a string of shows in October. To find out more about their new album "Alive," please visit risingappalachia.com.

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