June 2010 Monthly Music Guide #4

Looking for something new? Here’s what I’ve been listening to lately…

Artist: Josh Ritter
Album: So Runs the World Away (April 23, 2010)
Style: Songwriter guy?

Yes, here’s that genre I’ve found rather irresistible these days… somewhere between folk and indie and rock, it’s that quiet guitar picking that slowly layers instruments as it carefully builds a soothing sonic groove that bobs your head as it calms your soul… as long as it’s tied together with a memorable melody and lasting lyrics, it’s guaranteed gold. And with many fans hailing Mr. Ritter as one of the greatest songwriters of the decade, what else should I expect but lyrical storytelling that spans massive maritime travels and small town communities alike (and… a mummy/archaelologist love story…?). The album could do with a little more of the eulogic and hymn-like (despite its name) “Folk Bloodbath” and a little less of the angry ranting “Rattling Locks,” but for the most part it’s an engaging excursion that’s sure to satisfy with smiles, borrowing spiritual language at times but mostly telling stories of simple folk seeking their ways in a weary world.

Standout Lyric: I am assured yes I am assured yes /
I am assured that peace will come to me /
A peace that can yes surpass the speed yes /
Of my understanding and my need
Standout Lyric II:Where the thistles eat the thorns, and the roses have no chance /
and it ain’t no wonder that the babies come out crying in advance… /
I’ll need light from my lantern, light from my lantern tonight /
Be the light of my lantern, light of my lantern tonight
STREAM THE WHOLE ALBUM: joshritter.com

The Skies Revolt - Plastic Revolution
The Skies Revolt
Album: Plastic Revolution (June 2010)
Style: Dance-core with gang vocals

A few minutes into this rowdy album you get the impression that it’s more fitting for a live show (good thing the band signed up for no less than six slots at Cornerstone next week), but after acquiring a taste, the disc is enjoyable on its own. For the most part, this is a straight-forward but unique two-layer cake: synthesized keys and banging drums on the bottom, and group vocals on the top. This dancing and yelling probably isn’t for everyone – something like the flavor of Jonezetta meets the mischievousness of Five Iron Frenzy meets the raucousness of The Chariot – but it offers some fun if you give it a chance. The lyrics reach interesting depths, and even when they veer cryptically you feel like there’s opaque meaning lurking somewhere in the tangential current.

Standout Lyric: My lips are sore from the healing process. /
I’m not considered a whore because I ask forgiveness… /
Take my soul and perforate it like paper /
for quicker detachment later
In Case It Interests You: Based on their lyrics and associates I would assume the members of The Skies Revolt are known as Christians, but I don’t personally know what they profess.
FREELY DOWNLOAD THE WHOLE ALBUM: theskiesrevolt.bandcamp.com

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