• Virgin Forest – Easy Way Out [Album Review] MP3

    I first heard of Virgin Forest a couple months ago when I saw Deer Tick in Chicago. John McCauley was sporting a Virgin Forest tee and, being the sophomoric 41 year old that I am, it made an impression. And really, who wouldn’t want to visit a forest comprised of virgins? As luck would have it, something came from their PR machine the next day and I saw the word Phosphorescent written somewhere there on my ph...

    17.01.2012

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    17.01.2012

  • The Wooden Sky – Child of the Valley [new mp3, new album] MP3

    Every Child a Daughter, Every Moon a Sun is the new album from Canadian alt-country outfit The Wooden Sky. If last year’s City of Lights EP was just a little tease, this track should finish the job of converting you into a fan of The Wooden Sky. Look for the album on 2/28. The Wooden Sky – Child of the Valley Tweet

    11.01.2012

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    11.01.2012

  • Buxton – Nothing Here Seems Strange [Album Review] MP3

    I’m really looking forward to music in 2012. We’ve got releases coming out from Lucero, Damien Jurado, The Shins, Delta Spirit and a bunch more. But in all the excitement, let’s not overlook the up and comers in 2012. One such band is a five-piece folk-rock band from Houston that goes by the name Buxton. The band is celebrating the soon-to-be released New West Records debut album “Nothing ...

    09.01.2012

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    09.01.2012

  • Our Favorite Songs of 2011 MP3

    Just when you thought the best of 2011 lists were over, we went ahead and did it. I now hate lists and hate myself for posting this. But it must be done. This is a starting point, so leave your favorites in the comments and I’ll keep adding mine as a run across ‘em. Woody and I threw this list together over IM one day, so I”m sure plenty of good tracks are missing, but here were some of our favorit...

    05.01.2012

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    05.01.2012

  • Ox – tUCo [Album Review] MP3

    Ox is a Canadian gem that is grossly under-appreciated in the States. I somehow stumbled across them a few years back and have been smitten ever since. And although I have been batting my eyelashes at them for years now, I’ve yet to see them live. They have never visited Chicago or made a trip down to SxSW. Combine the handiwork of Mark Browning and his main collaborator Ryan Bishops and tUCo is Ox at their b...

    05.01.2012

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    05.01.2012

  • Simone Felice readies debut solo album. Reveals how he died once and nearly again. [new mp3] MP3

    I fancy myself an early Felice Brothers fan. Fell in love with their debut and caught them performing on a porch at SxSW (caught it on video). As a lover of folk music, it was impossible not to love the contrasting Dylan-esque vocals of Ian Felice and the Cat Stevens-esque vocals of Simone Felice. I think it was the following year in Austin when we found The Felice Brothers again, this time at a much larger venue. I...

    22.12.2011

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    22.12.2011

  • Bailiff, Live Session #97 MP3

    I’ve been following the growth of Bailiff for a few years now.  After hearing the band at Lincoln Hall back in January of 2010 I was eager to get them in for a HearYa session.  After speaking with the band, I learned that they probably weren’t ready for a session at the time, but were about to begin work on their first full-length album.  We decided to spend an evening cutting a demo together ...

    15.12.2011

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    15.12.2011

  • The Best EP’s of 2011 MP3

    We’re in the midst of preparing our best albums of 2011, but we can’t overlook the shorties that caught our eyes this year. These were our favorite EP’s of the year, topped by one of the biggest surprises of the year in Alabama Shakes. We’re locking in a session with them as we speak (fingers crossed). We’ll also be releasing a session with Ivan and Alyosha in the coming weeks. The ...

    08.12.2011

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    08.12.2011

  • The Milk Carton Kids’ Prologue. How did I overlook them this year? [Free Album] MP3

    There were big chunks of the year where I had my head up my ass. Blessed with a toddler and infant at home and busy managing a large workforce for the day job, early 2011 piled on some busy days and sleepless nights. Here at the end of 2011 (just a couple months ago), I relocated from Atlanta to Kansas City. This just two years after moving from the Bay area to Atlanta which was 4 years after moving from Chicago to ...

    01.12.2011

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    01.12.2011

  • Damien Jurado, Nothing Is News from Maraqopa [new mp3] MP3

    Damien Jurado’s last album, Saint Bartlett, has slowly become my favorite in his 15 year discography. That album was produced by Richard Swift and the collaboration was magical. Jurado and Swift have been sweating it out in the studio and will release Damien’s new album, Maraqopa, in February. Don’t expect a simple folk record. Maraqopa promises to find team Jurado/Swift forging into new terr...

    28.11.2011

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    28.11.2011

  • Carter Tanton – Freeclouds (album review) MP3

    Tulsa’s full-length debut was one of my most anticipated albums of 2009. Their EP, I Was Submerged, was on repeat for 2007 and 2008. I saw them at SxSW, at Schubas for Tomorrow Never Knows and had all but scheduled Tulsa in for a HearYa session. And then they were gone; vanished into thin air like a fart. Well after a couple years and some other projects, the voice and lead guitarist of Tulsa is back with his...

    22.11.2011

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    22.11.2011

  • Mates of State, Live Session #96 MP3

    Mates of State are a husband wife duo consisting of Kori Gardener and Jason Hammel.  I first learned of them through my friend Bill Racine who co-produced their album Bring It Back in 2006.  “Punchlines” and “Running Out” are two of my favorite songs off that album that I’ve returned to many times over the years. After teaming up with producer Peter Katis (The National, Interpol,...

    18.11.2011

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    18.11.2011

  • A.A. Bondy – Believers [Album Review Chicago Ticket Giveaway for Tonight] MP3

    Belivers, A.A. Bondy’s latest album, has been impossible for me to review. I’ll first point out that I am in love with the album, but it’s different from every album I’ve listened to this year. It has a few songs that rise above others, like “Surfer King” and “Rte. 28/Believers,” but they serve as crests on the album’s waves that ebb and flow in a dream stat...

    08.11.2011

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    08.11.2011

  • Mount Moriah, Live Session #95, featuring unreleased “Swannanoa” MP3

    Mount Moriah is my favorite discovery of 2011. Founding members, Heather McEntire and Jenks Miller, admit to resenting their North Carolinian Southern Gospel roots in their former bands. In creating Mount Moriah, however, they embrace folk, gospel and alt-country in pursuit of a gorgeous and melancholy batch of songs that underscores the changing season. After spending some time with Mount Moriah’s debut albu...

    04.11.2011

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    04.11.2011

  • Company – Holy City [Album Review] MP3

    I don’t even know how Holy City ended up on my iPod. And for that matter, I don’t know why I chose to listen to a band that I never heard of. I think I must have scrolled too far past Christina Aguilera. Company come to us from South Carolina and are pretty damn good. They play catchy tunes and the lead singer sounds like a less polished like James Mercer. If I had to describe them (and frankly I alway...

    02.11.2011

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    02.11.2011

  • Dax Riggs – Say Goodnight To The World [Happy Halloween!] MP3

    Dax Riggs’ live session with us was the most appropriate to dig up for Halloween. I’m pretty sure his voice pulls spirits from their graves. Dax Riggs – Say Goodnight To The World (HearYa Live Session) Dax Riggs – Let Me Be Your Cigarette (HearYa Live Session) Dax Riggs – Sleeping With The Witch (HearYa Live Session) Dax Riggs – I Hear Satan (HearYa Live Session) Dax Riggs â...

    31.10.2011

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    31.10.2011

  • WATERS – Out In The Light [Album Review] MP3

    WATERS is the band that emerged after Port O’Brien dissolved. Founding POB front man Van Pierszalowski fled the States for Oslo, Norway after the breakup before continuing his travels to Alaska where he’d spent time working with his father, a commercial fisherman. Then off to his hometown in Northern California, over to Brooklyn, then back to Oslo to put a band together and form WATERS. Port O’B...

    31.10.2011

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    31.10.2011

  • The Deep Dark Woods – The Place I Left Behind [Album Review] MP3

    There isn’t a band in existence that I’ve evangelized more than The Deep Dark Woods. I have recommended them to family and friends and nearly all have fallen in love with the warm folk sounds produced by these Canadians.  I was on a business trip not long ago and it was the most turbulent flight of my life. I’m typically a great flier, but this one had me thinking the worst. I looked at my iP...

    19.10.2011

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    19.10.2011

  • James Vincent McMorrow – We Don’t Eat [Music Video] MP3

    James Vincent McMorrow made a splash with his debut album, Early In The Morning, released in March of last year. Dublin’s answer to Justin Vernon (Bon Iver) just released a video for “We Don’t Eat” which reminded me how great that album is, especially considering it was written and self-produced in an isolated house by the sea off the coast of Ireland by a guy that had thrown in the towel on...

    17.10.2011

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    17.10.2011

  • Justin Townes Earles Wins Song of the Year MP3

    Justin Townes Earle took home song of the year at the 2011 Americana Music Awards for “Harlem River Blues.” It was a fitting end to what has been a long year back from an abyss filled with addictions, demons, rehab and redemption. I have met Justin a handful of times, including a Cubs game with him in Chicago. He’s always been a pleasure to spend time with so I am glad he is reaping the reward for...

    17.10.2011

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    17.10.2011

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