Mattie Leon – Boy – Audio

Mattie Leon is a Canadian folk-rock creator.

Mattie Leon - photo credit - Josh Haggarty

Mattie Leon – photo credit – Josh Haggarty

A rich and rightfully confident vocal is surrounded by acoustic melodies, to the accompaniment of trotting percussion, giving the songs both a depth of texturing as well as momentum that was most recently captured in the seven track LP Signal Hill (available on bandcamp).

Whilst my selection from the release is the southern-blues infused second song Boy – it should not be taken as typical of the LP as the almost half-an hour album is a mix of material that includes influences of RnB, soul fusion and folk-ballad.

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The Contenders – Save A Place At The Table – Audio

The US folk-rock band The Contenders released the LP Laughing With the Reckless on the 3rd.

The Contenders

The Contenders

Merging Americana, country and protest folk in to the saucepan The Contenders are able to create music which has a wistful, though ultimately optimistic visage, that is highlighted by vocal harmonies and intricate, low-key, instrumentation, giving the sense of a timeless durability.

The sixth of the nine tracks – Save A Place At The Table being my pick of the release.

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Laughing With the Reckless – The Contenders is available on iTunes.*

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Rob Williams – Butte, Montana 1885 – Audio

On the 27th the US folk-rock creator Rob Williams releases the LP An Hour Before Daylight.

Rob Williams

Rob Williams

The eleven track album (available on squareup) contains a depth of flavourings which entices the listener to linger with the full release. Predominately acoustic guitar driven the album also brings in to play piano and slide to accompany the highly capable vocal. There is a deep-root of southern blues influence which affords the compositions a richness of sound that is unanticipated considering the frailty of instrumentation as the tracks thread between forlorn ballads and invitations to join in footstep.

The most recent track to surface from A Hour Before Daylight is the fifth, Butte, Montana 1885, which has a resonating air of sadness with a baffled percussion underpinning the song and necessarily makes it a composition I particularly enjoy.

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Khuno – Atados – Video

It was back in 2014 that the Bolivian folk-rock Khuno sextet last featured – then known as the trio of Aguayo.

Khuno

Khuno

Always a pleasure to catch up with developments of musicians who have been out of focus for a while. Atados – a live version – arose recently which finds Khuno drawing reference point from both tradition and ’60s art-rock leaving the listener crossing fingers there will be more to follow imminently.

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Miles Recommends – Darkness – Audio

The Australian folk-rock duo Miles Recommends releases the EP – Extended Play on the 5th of February.

Miles Recommends - Extended Play - artwork

Miles Recommends – Extended Play – artwork

Extended Play (available on bandcamp) is a collection of five songs which ponders of the realities of life in a world where following the crowd has become the accepted norm with no articulation as to how that benefits the individuals who make up the mass.

There is a melancholic air to the compositions that are marked by the vocal harmonies which allow Miles Recommends to deliver a different flavour in each piece. This breadth is further enhanced by the range of instruments at their disposal which are carefully selected and deployed to create the weave of the fabric in the songs.

The middle track is Darkness – a sombre number that has a captivating beauty.

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