Little Bandit – Breakfast Alone
Little Bandit is the band name that singer songwriter Alex Caress uses to apply his trade as a deftly skilled artist that walks that fine line between old school Country, older school country, and rhinestone cowboy Country.
Not since Eddie Noack’s “Psycho” has has a tune so nonchalantly addressed murder and mayhem as Caress does here on “Platform Shoes,” and this is not even the darkest song on the record. With a voice that elevates somewhere between Roy Orbisson and Bobby Darin, this album will push all of your emotional buttons.
Andrew Combs – Canyons of My Mind
In Nashville, a city where you can’t swing a dead cat without hitting a brilliant Americana singer songwriter, Andrew Combs stands out. His latest album, Canyons of my Mind is in the mode of Elliott Smith, Nick Drake, or Bon Iver, with a heavy whiff of early era Glen Campbell particular on “Rose Colored Blues,” a song that seems to share some DNA with “Gentle on My Mind.”
Coco Hames – Coco Hames
Attempting to apply any one genre to Coco Hames is not an easy endeavor. The gamut is run from Go Go’s style 80’s swagger on “I Don’t Wanna Go” to Bangles sounding “Long Time Comin” every song’s an eclectic winner. “I Do Love You” goes all the way back into 60’s girl group territory, and “Tiny Pieces” could have been a Replacements song which makes sense since it is a cover from Tom Stinson’s side piece Bash and Pop band and features vocal sharing with John McAuley of Deer Tick. Simply put, outstanding!
Danny Worsnop – The Long Road Home
If you are a fan of his British metal-core band Asking Alexandria, you probably should put your ears on cruise control right past this record. If, on the other hand, you are a fan of confessional, easy on the ears Country Rock give this one a try. Forgive him for going all Kenny Chesney on “Mexico” since all will be forgiven with cool mini-anthems like “Midnight Woman” and the Honky Tonk ready “Don’t Overdrink It.”
Sunny Sweeny – Trophy
When the album starts with the line “Bartender, don’t shake your head at me,” you get a pretty good idea as to what is going to be shortly in store for your ears. And it’s all cool. From tear in your beer ballads with “Pass the Pain,” to screw it, let’s have fun stompers on the Miranda Lambert inspired “Better Bad Idea,” and straight on vintage Country that she pulls out on “I Feel Like Hank Williams Tonight,” all of the back to the barroom elements are checked off. Trophy might get some nods for best Country album of the year.