Booker T. Jones - The Road From Memphis
Seems fitting enough considering the flooding in Memphis this week. I always find it easy to listen to his music but am rarely taken by it. I like the addition of guest vocalists here including Jim James.
Ben Sollee - Inclusion
At first listen I threw out the names Paul Simon and Brett Dennen. I believe the quality of the songs and the soul of the sound are on par with Simon. I use Dennen as the low end measuring stick. I know he is really pretty good but I've had problems appreciating his ilk of singer over the last 10 years. There are several "soulful" white boys who feel the need to use their own brand of annunciation that really kills it for me. Sollee is not there, but he can edge on it at times. I like him because of his Kentucky roots and community fueled shows and songs. I will always give him some bonus points for that and I will always want to listen to what he has to say. Hopefully this one will grow on me. Here is a link for a good review by Silas House.
Fleet Foxes - Helplessness Blues
I would say this one is at the same level as the first. They came onto "the scene" pretty hard a couple of years ago and garnered lots of critical and popular praise. I listened then and I liked what I heard although I never jumped in deep. I doubt I'll jump here either but I will always welcome such sweet sounds and maybe one of these days, I'll get to know these songs well enough to feel steeped.
The Felice Brothers - Celebration, Florida
Warren Haynes - Man in Motion
Man Man - Life Fantastic
Okkervil River - I Am Very Far
Lee Scratch Perry - Rise Again
El Obo - Oxford Basement