The Country music world produces some of the best performers in the world. Some of them fly under the radar and don’t always get the recognition they deserve. “Promised Land,” a new release by Russ Still and The Moonshiners (off their album “Still Cookin”) is a prime example of the excellence contemporary country music has to offer. Russ Still has been playing in bands for over 40 years, and his musiciansmanship and arrangements are clearly displayed in this release. In the lyrics of the song there’s a reference to him being “30 years past his prime.” There’s no indication that anybody on this recording has lost a step musically though. “Promised Land” is brimming with energy and enthusiasm, combined with the skill and professionalism of well worn country scene veterans. Great quality stuff here.
It’s obvious from listening to singer-songwriter Leah Capelle’s new track “Joshua” that she’s extremely talented. Her voice comes through with crystal clarity on the recording. Despite being extremely well produced, the song doesn’t utilize any needless overprocessing or “autotune.” Capelle is a pro singer with awards and high profile showcases under her belt, and I’d be willing to bet this jam sounds every bit as good live. The song itself is kind of a mix between “adult contemporary” and pop but with an organic feel to it. The free spirited outdoorsy ambiance of the video certainly accentuates this. Solid music video from a legit performer.
“And you, Brutus” is an impressive new song from the band Cranford Hollow’s album “Color/Sound/Renew/Revive.” Within the first few seconds of listening, you can immediately tell these guys are professionals. One can sense a lot of working class, mid 70’s classic southern rock influences, but the sound itself maintains a contemporary appeal rather than coming across novel or from some kind of retro tribute outfit. The vocalist is stellar, and his voice vaguely resembles that of early Bruce Springsteen on stuff like “Atlantic City.” The lyrics are imaginative and highly detailed, transcending all the cliches that are associated with this style of music. The recording itself is clean and polished, with excellent musiciansmanship all the way around. Just a solid band. Support them and buy their album.
“America” is a new track out from a talented 4 piece band from New York known as Quantum Split. The video has a somewhat late 80’s VHS-like glitch aesthetic which is clearly intentional and a good artistic fit for the music, which is a quality blend of classic rock, glam and soul. The guitar solos are reminiscent of bands like Guns and Roses, but Quantum Split clearly draws from a variety of styles and manages to create their own unique sound. The contagious energy and enthusiasm in “America” along with the charismatic female vocals provide the listener with a positive and mood uplifting experience.