Reviews:: Luke Brindley, Joan as Police Woman, The Cripple Lilies, David Hillman

We’ve always said we’ll review anything we get sent, as long as we don't hate it. Unfortunately, we both tend to write epic reviews and only review full albums, and as more records come it gets tougher to keep up. We are a 1.5 man shop, as Shane is half man and half amazing (if amazing is slang for focused on keeping our site up and running).

Anyway, we’ve had some records that have been catching our collective ear (or if you love '93, our collective soul)::

Luke Brindley – Luke Brindley
We can’t claim to have found this guy. I read about him on the always great Songs Illinois. I haven’t heard the full record yet, which is usually something we avoid posting on, but this guys laid-back Van Morrison soulful style is way too good to ignore. I’ve been listening to the free MP3s non stop for the last two days. I tried to sell my friend on it, and the only way I could describe it was, “lying in bed on a Sunday morning, with the light coming through the windows, watching the specs of dust float aimlessly around the room” type music.

Luke also works with his brother on a more rootsy-pop rock project – The Brindley Brothers – that’s worth checking out. Next step – buy full record.
MP3:: Never Alone
MP3:: Hold onto the Mystery
MP3:: Rise Above
MP3:: Man on Fire

Joan as Police Women
Joan is as diverse as they get. She earned her stripes playing in rock outfits like Dambuilders before changing styles and slinking around with the gentle sounds and tones of Antony and Rufus Wainright. Her own record fits more into that mold. Delicate piano notes mark points along the journey, but you can’t help but follow her voice as it bobs and weaves along, often taking the more scenic route. With help from her friends (Antony and Joseph Arthur), she has created a solid record that should be getting more attention than it is getting. She mixes soul, jazz, and pop effortlessly and changes tempo enough to keep the record from blending (Her duets with Antony (I Defy) and Christobel (ft. Joseph Arthur) both crank it up nicely). Fitting with the Sunday morning vibe, Eternal Flame is simply gorgeous. This record is a standout to say the least.
MP3:: Eternal Flame
MP3:: The Ride
Stream the whole record @ Cheap Lullabye

The Cripple Lilies
When I first listened to this record, I was kind of ambivalent to the sounds. Washes of cymbals, man/woman traded vocals, and enough jazz flute solos to make Ron Burgandy blush; just wasn’t really getting into it all that much. But over the last couple of weeks it’s revealed more layers and I’ve started to enjoy it more and more. The underlying drum lines start to stand out and beef up the nice twee melodies. Favorite tracks are Bella on the Rocks and Is it Possible to Change.
MP3:: Bella on the Rocks


David Hillman
I stumbled on David’s record courtesy of herohill fav Pete Bush. Bush played bass on the record and I have to be honest. On first pass, I was not 100% sold on David’s output. There was a slight disconnect from what I expected and what he created (which is completely my issue, not his). Luckily, I kept pushing forward, and Hillman’s Americana Hour has evolved in front of my ears. He is extremely passionate about his work, obviously taking the time to find the exact sounds he wanted. He uses slick rockabilly guitar and samples from the right influences to keep me listening. The country-tinged fiddle on Lake Matilda beefs up the mix and makes it a nice foot stomper and swinging numbers like Vexations and Inky make you want to move around. He touches on blues (Darlene) and even adds a touching string-laced, piano ballad (The Legend of Amy Pearl, Gunslinger). He uses so many styles, it will be interesting to see which one he decides on, but it’s a sincere effort from a Seattle musician with a big upside.
MP3:: Inky


@ 9:41 PM, Michael Krahn kicked the following game:

Hey,

I posted a review of Luke's album and The Brindley Brther's latest at Digital Journal:
http://www.digitaljournal.com/article/210252/Album_Reviews_Luke_Brindley_The_Brindley_Brothers

 

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