Love in the Future John Legend
Columbia

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

nine-time grammy award winning artist john legend has released his fourth studio splo album, "love in the future."the man paid his dues, working for all kinds of superstars, before he exploded on his own in 2004. the man is a rhythm and blues star, with smooth harmony and growling authority and vocal
power. add glorious tension and melodic pop and the soul inside bursts through.

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The Blessed Unrest Sara Bareilles
Epic

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

sara bareilles has released a remarkable album entitled "the blessed unrest." the work of art is a theatrical passion play--a bit of a soap opera. i wish i knew what this album is about. i think it's about a love affair but i'm not sure. all i can say is that bruce once sang that she is "all that heaven will allow." he must have known about sara.

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Travelling Companion The Good Intentions
Wrasse Import

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

"travelling companion" is a very relaxed album by the good intentions, with easy on the ear songs about loss and change that bears testament to the band's chemistry and affinity with classic country. it's about the never-ending trap of love, and how you're a slave, but a happy one. as we used to say in washington heights in nyc, top of the line, a stone cold winner.

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Roseann Fino Roseann Fino
Woodstock Records

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

roseann fino's self-titled debut album are a new and refreshing convergence of roots rock and new york street smarts. as a 47 year veteran of the cityroseann treats us to a pure whiff of americana roots sweet with morning dew. she can hurt us with stories about a generation without hope or future at the same time. she captures hooks, singing with the half-awake flow and expanding her style with great stories. she's got the magic touch.

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MGMT MGMT
Columbia

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

the two guys who make up the band mgmt, andrew van wyngarden and ben goldwasser have released their third self-titled album. they continue to push themselves to expand the boundaries of modern pop music. they don't create anything small--so leave it to the collective to make a disk of vast, orchestral rock that locates the battle for the human soul among big houses and manicured lawns. 

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So UnexpectedCD Baby Dana Marcine
CD Baby

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

"so unexpected" references the serendipity of life, which is a big part of dana marcine's musical path. she is a jazz vocalist, so it must take a lot to make her happy musically. and what makes this album work so well is her glorious vocal style.

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Lost Souls & Locked Doors Rob Nance
CD Baby

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

rob nance has created his debut album, "lost souls & locked doors." the result? a modern album that could have been recorded in the 1970s, complete with swooning harmonies, honking harmonica, solid fretwork and powerful vocals. it's got real overtones that give it a poignancy. there are eleven tracks by rob nance, and it gives you shivers when you put the disk on and press play. 

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Ten Nu-Blu
Rural Rhythm

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

nu-blu has developed a solid fan base utilizing the strong vocal talents of founders carolyn and daniel routh and levi austin along with their diverse selection of material including original songs, traditional favorites and songs from other genres of music. but "ten" is about a generation with hope for the future. their mighty bluegrass is about the never-ending trap of love and how you're a slave, but a happy one.

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Shatter Jude Johnstone
BoJak Records

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

jude johnstone, the artist, tells us that "shatter" is about reclaiming your power by giving it up and looking deep at your shortcomings while finding the courage to change. i've been interested in music with energy with an underlying heavyness, but i've also been interested in the simplicity of a song. at the heart of all these tracks is a great album; a cycle of verse, bridge, chorus. this album is a very special work of art.

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600 Years In A Moment Fiona Joy Hawkins
Little Hartley Music

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

fiona joy hawkins' concept is to bring instruments and their unique sounds from villages across the globe to explore the hidden musical treasures of cultures in a modern musical setting. when i listened to "600 years ina moment" there was something that burst out of the ground and surrounded me--like children and flowers and africa were appearing out of nowhere. and when all the music comes in it is from another planet.

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Fleetwood Mac Opus Collection Fleetwood Mac
Warner Bros. / Rhino

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

the fleetwoodmac "opus collection." the greatest hits from one of the greatest bands ever, including christine mcvie, who i'm told has rejoined  the gang. the duo of the sultry siren, stevie nicks, and songwriter/guitarist/singer lindsey buckingham focused the band into the group who brought their blues kicks with them. they created just what mainstream music fans were  lookibg for. and, at the time they were killing audiences the two couples were jkilling each other. they achieved the perfect balance between self-expression and commercial appeal. lord hacve mercy.

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Only Me Rhonda Vincent
Upper Management

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

five-time grammy nominee, rhonda vincent, has treated us to a real doubleheader on "only me", a double album that masters bluegrass and country, with willie nelson thrown in there just as an added joy. she shows her twangy sound gloriously on the bluegrass cuts picking expressive cuts to show us her vocal chops. and the soulful splendor that keith whitley had in the country world rhonda has in spades. you'll be cryong at mysterious moments with her heartbreakers in your soul.

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Here I Come Eddie Cotton
CD Baby

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

those who appreciate eddie cotton's collection of classic electric blues with funky rhythms, soulful vocals and some downright blistering guitar playing have come to the right place if they pick up "here i come." cotton has created an original twist on soul's fundamental contradiction--the energy that affirms and counters pain-by a modern, gifted man for whom great music is great relief.

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The Women of Jazz Various Artists
Twenty20 Records

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

from jazz's genesis into the 21st century women have played a vital, albeit often underappreciated, role in the development of the genre, bringing an indispensable balance of heart and artistry as vocalists, instrumentalists and composers. check out ella, dinah, eartha, lena, miriam, sarah, nina and billie and many more. if you play "women of jazz" less than one hundred times this year you'll be taking something glorious out of your life.

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Sweetheart Various Artists
Hear Music

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

"sweatheart," is a spectacular album where our favorite artists play their favorite love songs. great artists of today select and present art, bringing new passion to tried-and-true expressions of ardor. we are treated to artistic creations by beck, ben harper, fiona apple, brandi carlile, etc. need i say more. don't waste time. buy it now. 

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Think of Two David Helbock
CD Baby

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

the result of david helrock's random control "think of two" is great music. they create a wonderful, theatrical, ultra-enjoyable passion play--a bit of a soap opera. i wish i knew for sure what this disk is about. it may be about a love affair, but i'm not sure. what i am sure of is the great musicianship and more. the group doesn't stuggle for the organic. the sounds come from inside their souls to the outside world.

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Blue Divide Rob Derke
Zoho Music

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

rob derke & the nyjazz quartet have created an album where their many interests permeate the divide that many are currently experiencing in the economy, in politics, in education policy and in the arts. their special album, "blue divide," is a spectacular composition--artists hear magic and then add their own magic. i have never heard anything like this. this work is purely original.

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Libation Sierra Leone
Cumbancha

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

on "libation" the sierra leone refugee all stars take a more acoustic approach than on their last two albums, experimenting with a variety of vintage guitars and hand percussion to create unexpected sonic qualities. they play with religious overtones that give the disk a poignancy. you could pick so many tracks by them. playing "libation" just gives a mysterious shiver when you play the record in private 

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Give The People What They Want Sharon Jones and The Dap-Kings
DAPTONE

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

sharon jones and the dap-kings extend and preserve tradition: they remain a national treasure and an instant soul party. the eerines of their album, "give the people what they want," the lyrics, the way sharon jones delivers them prove that the special thing about blues lyrics is that you never really know who wrote them and where they came from. 

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Wicked Spell Chad Sullins
MADCOR

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

"wicked spell," the third rocking album by chad sullins and the last call coalition, is the latest smack by chad sullins who speaks the god's honest truth about everything in his life, and when it comes to his songwriting he tends to leave the polished overtones and silver-lining storytelling to the fairytale books. i've been interested in music with energy, with an underlying heavyness, but i've also been interested in the simplicity of a song. at the heart of all these tracks is a great album, a cycle of verse, bridge and chorus.

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Sounds Can't Be Made Marillion
Eagle Rock Entertainment

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

long considered one of britain's most original and innovative bands, marillion has carved a niche  as purveyors of soulful, powerful and deeply moving music. this double album, "sounds that can't be made," continues the torch they've carried so proudly as progressive, dramatic art-rock champions. their lenghty orchestral opuses and spectacle-driven live shows are included here. and this double disc sounds like they're right there in your living room.  

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