Once again, it’s Wednesday, so all the new CDs came out yesterday. So we’ll take a quick look at the one’s that have caught my attention.
MercyMe – The Generous Mr. Lovewell
I know, I know. Why on earth would I need to draw attention to a MercyMe record? Everybody already knows about them. Well, I have to write about it because it deserves it. It’s great. They deserve it. Don’t just assume you know what MercyMe is and what they’re going to do. Go listen to the record. Yes, you’ve already heard All of Creation on the radio. But there is so much more to offer. They are continuing to challenge themselves and make better and better music. I already mentioned that the song Back to You is this reggae-tinged pop song that should be a huge hit. The song Move totally takes the record in an unexpected direction. I really liked it. And Crazy Enough, what is that? A samba? Awesome. And Thad Cockrell co-wrote a great song near the end of the record so don’t miss Won’t You Be My Love. Just take a listen. It’s a great record, even if you think you already know what it will sound like. I think they may surprise you.
Minus The Bear – Omni
Another great record. It is much more polished, produced than earlier MTB efforts. So it loses a bit of the raw energy. But it is a cool new sound. It kind of reminds me of that record when Glen Ballard produced the Dave Matthews Band. It doesn’t sound like them, but this has a more controlled sound like that CD (Everyday). Like that, I’m sure a lot of MTB fans will revolt, but I still think it’s a great record with those funky bass lines still at the heart of everything. I really enjoy these guys. If you haven’t heard them, check it out.
Andrew Osenga – Choosing Sides
Okay, this has been out for a few weeks, but I still wanted to draw attention to it, because it’s awesome. Andrew was the frontman of The Normals, one of the great Christian bands of the last 20 years. His solo career has not gotten as much attention, but I think he’s still growing as a musician and as a songwriter. It’s hard to describe this record, because it’s both simple and complex. Most of the songs fall into a simple rock category but the writing is so much more. Both lyrics and melodies are intricately crafted. I hope you take a listen.
Court Yard Hounds – Court Yard Hounds
This is the two sisters from the Dixie Chicks. So I expected not to like it. I was wrong. These are simple songs with great melodies and harmonies. Most are written by Emily, best known as the banjo player from the Dixie Chicks. And she is singing lead most of the time as well. It’s just a simple record of nice songs. Well produced and recorded. I enjoyed it.
Alpha Rev – New Morning
These guys are from Austin. I first saw their video on VH1 at the gym. He launched into the chorus, and I thought to myself, “I know his melody will go down from here, but I sure wish it would go up.” And it did. Then I wished, “It sure would be great to go up one more time, but that would take a lot of guts.” And it did. What a payoff in the first line of a chorus. The song is the title track, New Morning. Anyway, I think these Austinites (Austinians?, Austiners?) have some real potential. They are playing La Zona Rosa in a Music for the City show this weekend with our friend Aaron Ivey, Miranda Dodson, Matt McCloskey, and Jason Poe. Wish I could be here but I’ll be in Oklahoma. At least I can listen to the record.
So there’s some new music for you. Comment back if you listen to any of these and tell me what you think. Or you can just tell me what you are listening to right now. Looking forward to hearing from you.