“Blue Skies” – Noah and the Whale
At first listen this is simply another break-up song, but stick with it. The lyrics are honest and thoughtful behind a slow, melodic electronic-drum driving beat. “Blue Skies” (which is currently 95 in the UK music chart) is part of the album The First Days of Spring, which is a story told about a relationship that has fallen apart. An ambitious endeavor that could well be successful by the sounds of this track.
“Saviour” – The Lights
This bubble-gum pop song borders on annoying and then pulls itself from the edge to create a listenable song. The rhythmic lyrics set to a guitar laden backdrop will have you singing the lyrics in spite of yourself.
“Sentimental Journey” – Nellie McKay
From the album Normal as Blueberry Pie: A Tribute to Doris Day this track is everything a Doris Day song should be and more. It has a sultry rhythm set to a melodic Calypso steel-pan vibe. This sexy track will lull you and make you think of Doris Day in a new light.
“Detonate My Dreams” – That Petrol Emotion
This heavily laden guitar track suffers from lyrics that are not necessary. As an instrumental this song from their 1993 album Fireproof would have been a superior show of musicianship, instead, it’s seen as a way to overcompensate for the barely audible lyrics.
“These Days [Live at the Olympia]” – R.E.M.
R.E.M. is an iconic band with an eclectic rock sound. In this live concert recording the lyrics match the frenzied sound of bass, drums and electronic guitar, which makes it seem as if you are actually in Greece mixing with the crowd. It is difficult to carry off the experience of a live concert in audio form, but judging from this song R.E.M. has succeeded.
“Idle Hands” – Shane Tutmarc
The great-grandson of Bud Tutmarc (arguably the creator of the electric bass) uses a funeral procession-type beat played by piano and drums to emphasize the title’s meaning. If Tutmarc is indeed doing “the devil’s work”, then Hell is a happening place.
“Hands” – The Dutchess & The Duke
Judging from this track this band has been heavily influenced by ‘60s folk and acid rock. The lyrics are in your face accompanied by stripped down and intense playing of the guitar, tambourine and drums. It’s the sort of song that you will think is a well done remake of Jefferson Airplane, but no – it’s strictly original music from an awesome sounding band.