Music Reviews

Artist: the Soil & the Sun

Album: Wake Up, Child

Go Download: “Raised in Glory”

 

From rich folk lullabies to layered alternative rock epics and everything in between, the Soil & the Sun prove their versatility with their debut album Wake Up, Child. The album is composed of the finalized versions of songs the band has been writing and recording sporadically for over three years. The compositions have clearly benefited from this extended incubation, as each track is remarkably complex, with any given song containing nearly a dozen different instruments along with numerous vocal tracks. The Soil & the Sun classify themselves as “Experimental Spiritual Folk-Rock meets New Mexican Space Music,” and this bohemian categorization is more apt than one would initially think. “I AM in Everything, Everywhere” highlights the “spiritual” aspect of the band’s work, with the repeated, chant-like line “Everything, Everywhere” nearly lulling the listener into philosophical pondering with each recurrent verse. The ascension of “WestDownRightUpLeftEast” is almost startling, as the cascading intro quickly gives way to a sweeping passage of strings, guitar and a hefty dose of reverb. The song toggles between rhythmic, nearly danceable, to an unassuming accompaniment of guitar and xylophone, to a shout-along bridge, almost certain to draw even the most modest listener to at least hum along. “Wheat-Germ Mother” illustrates the band’s playful side, sounding like a sort of children’s singalong from long ago. It then shifts from childish simplicity, to a middle-eastern-snake-charmer style melody seamlessly. With its wide variety of songs and ethereal instrumentation, Wake Up, Child is sure to satisfy even the most eclectic of palettes.

— Dylan Newcity

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Artist: Mat Kearney

Album: Young Love

Go Download: “Ships in the Night”

 

Having a total of four top 20 hits on Billboard’s Adult Top 40 chart since starting his music career, Mat Kearney presents a strong gift for tunes. With his album Young Love, people get to hear a mixture of catchy melodies and meaningful lyrics. Mixing his music with genres of hip-hop, folk and pop music makes his music an unclassifiable, infectious sound. “Ships in the Night” is the song that dominates this album. The upbeat chorus makes you want to belt out the lyrics and dance. The song offers an interesting perspective of a relationship trying to stay together, with thought-provoking lyrics. This album offers a wide range of sounds from striking ballads to bouncy arpeggios. Young Love is a must-buy for anyone looking for diversity in an artist.

— Morgan Yigdal

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Artist: Fun.

Album: Some Nights

Go Download: “We Are Young”

 

With the song “We Are Young” appearing in a series of TV ads and reaching No. 1 in the Billboard Hot 100 in March, Fun. has been rising in popularity. The band’s mixture of indie rock and pop provide great, easy-listening music. Some Nights provides a large number of ballad-like tunes for mellow afternoons. Most of the songs touch on an aspect of life, whether it be missing someone or saying that everything gets better with time. “We Are Young” is a song that many people can relate to. Making a mistake, trying to apologize, and then just enjoying what you have. Some Nights is an album with a little more meaning than auto-tune and stuttering lyrics.

— Morgan Yigdal

 

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