Below are albums #6-10 (in opposite order) for the year thus far. For the albums that have been reviewed here already, we've also included a link to the original review. Some things have changed. Others have not. Either way, all original reviews were left as they were.
Just like my commentary on Manchester Orchestra, I was impressed by Kevin Devine's progress and maturity as an artist here. He shed many of things that made his music either too raw or too naive, and the result was a colorful and dynamic effort I'm still pleasantly surprised by.
9. Heavy Ghost, DM Stith
I told you that you'd be hearing about this album again this week. Moving, and sometimes even a bit haunting, Heavy Ghost is a coming-out party of sorts for David Stith, and I'm honestly surprised we haven't heard more about it. Hopefully some more blogs pick up on this one before the end of the year, because it's definitely a must-hear album.
Calm down. It's still in the top 10. On top of that, it's an album that grows on you quite a bit with each listen, so who knows, maybe it'll continue to rise from the 8 out of 10 I originally gave it upon its release. Everyone's talked about this one, but I'll just say that it is one of the more unique and graceful records of the year, and one you need if you don't already have.
Another one that people have seemingly slept on so far this year. The band's second effort is rife with bright spots and memorable tracks as it utilizes an infectious energy and brilliant sense of the moment to hook you, quite easily, into a record I can discover more about with each listen.
As Ward's newest collaboration suggests, he now truly is a "Monster of Folk". Building on all of the goodwill generated last year by She & Him, he puts together an album that has some impeccable flow to it, as well as a charming demeanor that feels more warm and inviting every time. To me, it's definitely his best effort to-date.
And then there were five. Hopefully you enjoyed parts of this second post of three. The final portion, numbers one through five, will be up on Friday, so be sure to stop back in for that, as well as our review of Discovery's LP.