Della Mae “Headlight” (Rounder Records, 2020)

Earning a Grammy nomination for best Bluegrass album in 2014, Della Mae’s new album ‘Headlight’ demonstrates that they have moved beyond the conventions of the genre. Pushing aside expectations to use solely traditional bluegrass instruments: organ, Mellotron and electric guitar, amongst others, feature, speaking of a new-found independence and sense of freedom. The opening title track serves as a hymn to sisterhood and reflects Della Mae’s advocacy of women’s rights. Continue reading “Della Mae “Headlight” (Rounder Records, 2020)”

Kevin Daniel “Things I Don’t See” (Independent, 2019)

Prior to commencing a solo career in 2013, Kevin Daniel, a multi-instrumentalist, had played in a diverse range of settings from bluegrass quartets to big jazz bands. Daniel’s musical eclecticism is reflected in this album which shares with us twangy guitar, glorious three-part harmonies, Hammond B3 organ, strings and unexpected horns on some of the tracks. Tragedy haunts the title track, ‘Things I Don’t See’ which explores the moments before Daniel’s mother and step-father died in a plane crash.
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American Pleasure Dome “American Pleasure Dome” (Independent, 2019)

There is a Buddhist saying that, ‘The body ages, the mind doesn’t age’. At 53 years of age, Hans Schumacha, American Pleasure Dome’s leader and songwriter may have reflected on this saying when releasing this eponymous debut album. Hailing from Minneapolis, American Pleasure Dome are a four- piece band exuding a mellow rock tone with occasional shades of country.
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Matt Patershuk “If Wishes Were Horses” (Black Hen Music, 2019)

“Matt-Patershuk-2019”‘If Wishes Were Horses’ is the result of Matt Patershuk’s collaboration with award-winning string player and producer, Steve Dawson. This album presents an inspired blend of blues and country delivered by Patershuk’s intimate and soulful vocals. The characterful acoustic qualities of the recording were achieved at Vancouver’s Warehouse Studio which is owned by Bryan Adams. The album is punctuated by four instrumentals which land like scenes from some forgotten western; you can almost reach out and touch the rocks and cacti.
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