Los Lobos – Disconnected in New York City (2013)

 

losmp3 160 kbps | 84 MB | UL | TB | CL

Los Lobos were together for 33 years before they got around to making a live album, but it didn’t take long for them to grow fond of the format; Disconnected in New York City is the fourth concert set the veteran East L.A. band has released since 2005. As the title suggests, Disconnected in New York City was recorded during an acoustic gig at the City Winery in N.Y.C., and shows off the more intimate and easygoing side of the group’s musical personality, with the absence of amps taking some of the bite out of David Hidalgo’s guitar solos, often the high point of their gigs. (He does get to show off his chops on “Tin Can Trust,” and they’re as impressive as ever.) That’s not to say Los Lobos sound mellow on this date; the group is tight and emphatic at every turn, and Cesar Rosas’ vocals and Steve Berlin’s sax get a greater chance to shine in these quieter settings. The rhythms are fierce whey get a chance to simmer — the interplay between percussionists Bugs Gonzalez and Camilo Quinones is inspired — and rather than lean on their best-known tunes, Los Lobos reach deep into their songbook and pull out some excellent lesser-recognized numbers, including “Little Things,” “Tears of God,” and “Oh Yeah.” (They do deliver “La Bamba” to close the show, but invest the crowd-pleaser with lots of energy, and interpolate “Good Lovin'” to add a soulful spin.) Disconnected in New York City isn’t quite as interesting as 2005’s Acoustic en Vivo, which gave Los Lobos more room to explore their roots in Mexican folk music, but anyone who thinks this band may have run out of steam after pulling out their acoustic guitars gets schooled with a single listen to Disconnected. Forty years on, Los Lobos are still one of America’s best, bravest, and most satisfying bands, and their skills and their their instincts remain razor-sharp, regardless of their stage volume

Ted Russell Kamp – Night Owl (2013)

tedTed Russell Kamp (or TRK as he abbreviates himself) is a jobbing musician with a background playing bass with Wilson Phillips and Shooter Jennings. Over the years however he’s released several of his own albums that have gradually gained him a reputation particularly in Europe. ‘Night Owl’ finds him in the company of some fine musicians including Chuck Blackwell on drums and Danny Timms on piano as he delivers 14 self penned or co written songs.
Recorded in various locations including Tulsa, Fort Worth and Nashville the overall sound is a version of Southern country soul with some sweet organ and pedal steel licks reminding one of the likes of Spooner Oldham and Tony Joe White although TRK doesn’t reach the same heights as they once did. From the start the album evokes a late night feel, perfect for night owl listeners as the sweet radio tones of “Smile Alone’s” Wurlitzer organ drive this fine ballad. The crunchy power chords of “Another Love Song” might awake a sleepy listener but the dreamlike “Fireflies” restores a warm soporific sense. Kamp raises the stakes with the excellent “A Whole Lot of You and Me” which is a classic example of that laid back southern soul groove where the keyboards, percussion and pedal steel have that honeyed Muscle Shoals feel and Kamp captures some of the essence of Penn and Oldham. “Santa Ana Winds” switches attention to a more parched south with a plaintive trumpet and forlorn pedal steel summoning up a Calexico type feel. Kamp delivers several other songs that are of a similarly high calibre throughout the album with the only caveat here being that the New Orleans inspired “The Last Drop” sticks out like a sore thumb, its jaunty clarinet stylings somewhat out of step with the remainder of the album.

mp3 320 kbps | 129 MB | UL | CL

Maria Taylor – Something About Knowing (2013)

MMaria Taylor has spent her career in camaraderie and collaboration. Darting from the old day job as half of Azure Ray alongside Orenda Fink to deliver multi-instrumental and vocal favours to the likes of Bright Eyes, Now It’s Overhead and the mighty Crooked Fingers, Taylor has become a Saddle Creek stalwart who has also managed to glean acclaim for her delicate, sepia-soaked solo outings.
Taylor celebrates the ultimate collaboration here on Something About Knowing – her new, world-tilting experience as a first time parent colours much of the record, largely with joy and optimism, but also with teeth-clenching cuteness and cliché.
Displaying an incredible knack for a tune on the beguiling, half-whispered opener “Folk Song Melody”, it’s nimbus-light touch is reminiscent of some of the finer moments of Eleanor Friedberger with occasional memory flashes of Father John Misty’s debut, even the occasional ear pricked towards Iron and Wine. “You can’t be free until you’re ready/I got lucky you see” coos Taylor’s lilting, falsetto-reaching voice and we’re given the first indication of the overwhelming lyrical theme and tone of the album – heart-swelling optimism with foundations built on the joy of parenthood.

mp3 320 kbps | 96 MB | UL | CL

The Holmes Brothers – Brotherhood (2013)

holmOver the course of a 30-year career, with 10 acclaimed albums and thousands of live performances, revered roots trio The Holmes Brothers have garnered heaps of critical praise and countless loyal fans with their timeless blend of gospel-drenched blues, soul, funk and country, highlighted by heavenly vocal harmonies. Their four previous Alligator releases have sold over 83,000 units worldwide
On ‘Brotherhood’ The Holmes Brothers dig deep to deliver a wealth of authentic, joyous blues, funk, R&B and soul. Dominated by eight new Holmes Brothers originals, the album also includes sparkling versions of songs by Ike Turner, William Bell & Booker T. Jones, Ted Hawkins and more. The band’s unparalleled version of “Amazing Grace,” which opens every Holmes Brothers performance, is a soul-stirring highlight of the album.

mp3 320 kbps | 134 MB | UL | TB

Boz Scaggs – The Essential (2013)

BOZTHE ESSENTIAL BOZ SCAGGS is the first 32-song, double-CD collection to track his solo career from 1969 (his seminal self-titled American debut LP on Atlantic Records, produced by  Rolling Stone editor/publisher Jann Wenner in Muscle Shoals, with Duane Allman on lead guitar) all the way to 2013 (his Memphis album, a tribute to that city’s musical greats).  At the heart of this collection are 23 cuts that cover his near two-decade stay at Columbia Records starting in 1971, including 14 Hot 100 chart singles that established him on radio in the U.S.

mp3  VBR~236 kbps | 265 MB | UL | TB

James Taylor – The Essential (2013)

JThe Essential James Taylor is the first 2CD anthology of biggest hits and greatest songs from the quintessential singer-songwriter spanning the full course of the artist’s career. It is also the first James Taylor collection to provide equal focus on both his Warner Bros. and Columbia Records catalogs.
Inducted into both the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and the Songwriter’s Hall of Fame in 2000, James Taylor is a five-time Grammy Award winner, with a host of hit records, beloved songs and a coveted RIAA Diamond Award to his credit.  He has sold more than 100 million albums worldwide.

mp3 VBR~231 kbps | 182 MB | UL | TB

Toby Keith – Drinks After Work [Deluxe Edition] (2013)

toAvailable in 13-track deluxe editions, Drinks After Work again finds Keith serving as sole producer and principle songwriter with credit on nine of 10 tracks. Longtime collaborators Scotty Emerick, Bobby Pinson and Rivers Rutherford return as co-writers on multiple songs.This album is dedicated in memory of Chuck Goff, our longtime bandleader-bass player.  Toby Keith is one of the most consistent recording artists and touring draws of his era and continually ranking as one of the genre’s top grossing live performers. Forbes ranked him as the top-earning country artist of 2012.

mp3 320 kbps | 97 MB | UL | CL | TB

Kurt Vile – Wakin On A Pretty Daze: Deluxe Daze (Post Haze) (2013)

kurtIt’s been an epic year for Kurt Vile: from the universally loved release of Wakin On A Pretty Daze, to the late night television debuts, seemingly endless touring & the innagural Kurt Vile Day. Dubbed the Deluxe Daze (Post Haze) version of the release of this deluxe CD caps out this banner year as Kurt Vile is quickly but quietly becoming one of the great American guitarists and songwriters of our time.
The 69-minute album, comprised of sweeping, expansive songs that are both very intimate and conversational hits shelves repackaged with new Steve Powers (ESPO) artwork and a bonus EP entitled “it’s a big world out there (and i am scared)” .
The second disc includes a fleshed out “synth string” version of “Never Run Away” and two brand new tracks: the fingerpicked earworm “Feel My Pain” and the bedroom psych moves of “The Ghost of Freddie Roach”. Wakin standouts “Snowflakes Are Dancing” and “Air Bud” are also reprised here as “Snowflakes Extended” and “Wedding Budz”, respectively.
Wakin On A Pretty Daze is a timeless record that would have sounded great 30 years ago, sounds great today, and will still sound great in another 30 years from now.

mp3 192 kbps | 159 MB | UL  | TB