Category: Music Reviews

Album and song reviews

Iron and Wine still solid on latest album

http://www.shorenewstoday.com/snt/news/images/stories/00-downbeach/Shaun_Notes-Logo.jpg “Ghost on Ghost” released Tuesday, April 16 is the fifth and absolutely best Iron and Wine album to date. Singer-songwriter Samuel Beam, performing under the moniker Iron and Wine, has progressed as a songwriter […]

Dawes keeps rolling on ‘Stories Don’t End’

http://www.shorenewstoday.com/snt/news/images/stories/00-downbeach/Shaun_Cassette-Logo.jpg The retro sound that Dawes developed on the band’s first two albums is more refined and authentic on “Stories Don’t End,” released April 9. Since the band’s 2009 debut release “North Hills,” Dawes has […]

Hart masters soul on latest album

http://www.shorenewstoday.com/snt/news/images/stories/00-downbeach/Shaun_Notes-Logo.jpg When Beth Hart joined Jeff Beck on “I’d Rather Go Blind,” to honor Buddy Guy at the Kennedy Center in December it marked the second chapter in the singer’s career. Since receiving a standing […]

Wavves is fearless on new album

http://www.shorenewstoday.com/snt/news/images/stories/00-downbeach/Shaun_Cassette-Logo.jpg Full of crunchy power chords, youthful lyrics and unabashed energy, California-based Wavves is leading the grunge revival with “Afraid of Heights,” released March 26. The psychedelic stripped down surf punk sound perfected by the […]

‘Old Sock’ fits Clapton well

http://www.shorenewstoday.com/snt/news/images/stories/00-downbeach/Shaun_Notes-Logo.jpg Eric Clapton is clearly comfortable in is position as an elder statement of blues on his latest album, “Old Sock,” released March 12. Blues, soul, reggae, folk, jazz and an all-star cast of players […]

Yorke runs ‘Amok’ with Atoms for Peace

http://www.shorenewstoday.com/snt/news/images/stories/00-downbeach/Shaun_Notes-Logo.jpg “Amok” by Atoms for Peace is Thom Yorke’s latest neon enigma. The experimental electronic band led by the Radiohead vocalist includes Flea, the legendary bassist from Red Hot Chili Peppers, Radiohead producer Nigel Godrich […]

Youth Lagoon creates tranquil masterpiece

http://www.shorenewstoday.com/snt/news/images/stories/00-downbeach/Shaun_Notes-Logo.jpg The latest album by Youth Lagoon is an immersive and radiant composition that shouldn’t be overlooked by musical explorers. “Wondrous Bughouse,” released March 5 on Fat Possum Records, is the brilliant sophomore release by […]

Nothing childish about ‘Kid Face’

http://www.shorenewstoday.com/snt/news/images/stories/00-downbeach/Shaun_Notes-Logo.jpg Samantha Crain exhibits  youthful innocence and mature songwriting on her fifth album, “Kid Face,” released Tuesday, Feb. 19 on Ramseur Records. A skilled guitarist like Joni Mitchell with the unfiltered expression of Regina Spektor; […]

A journey into darkness with Nick Cave

http://www.shorenewstoday.com/snt/news/images/stories/00-2012/35/eht/Shaun_Notes-Logo.jpg Nick Cave leaves no psychological stone unturned on his most recent album “Push the Sky Away,” released Tuesday Feb. 19. The 15th studio album by Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds released by the […]

My soundtrack for the weekend is “A Wasteland Companion”

By SHAUN SMITH
Blogger-in-chief

M. Ward will not disappoint fans of his stripped down, reel-to-reel sound on his latest album A Wasteland Companion.

Ward (Matt Ward) has obviously been influenced by his musical relationship with Zooey Deschanel and it shows on the upbeat piano-laded “Beautiful Girl,” which stands not as a detachment of his signature style but an expansion of his talented reach. Fans of the doe-eyed hipster wonder will enjoy her standing beside Ward on “Sweetheart” and “Me and My Shadow.” Recording with Ward on this record makes her Patsy Cline style and hand claps sound authentic rather than retro.