Music to Thaw the Deep Freeze of 2014


It was a brutal Winter (of our discontent), but it's finally Spring and there's plenty of new music to thaw even the most solid block of plowed snow. Here are ten of my favorite new rock/pop/dance/funk/folk tunes. Let us begin with this tremendous track (and album) from one of my favorite folk-rock singer/songwriters, the former New Yorker and now L.A.-based David Poe. Here he shares his muse on his debut single "When I Fly" from his soon-to-be-released long player When I Fly. Check him out on tour, too.

NSFW aside, the "Leeches" video -- directed by Jessica Lauretti of the band This Frontier Needs Heroes -- is just one of the infectious tracks from the Shoulders album released by the terrifically talented singer/songwriter/composer PT Walkley, who just happens to hail from NYC. So there.

Real Estate has released one of the best rock singles of this young year. It has received heavy rotation in our office since we received the advance. Majestic, ringing, and just about perfect in texture, tone, and message. Their latest album, Atlas, was just released.

Aerosmith keyboardist Russ Irwin celebrates the freak in all of us on this ridiculously infectious pop-rock dance tune -- "The Perfect Beast" -- from his Get Me Home album. It takes a sideways swipe at Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines" video. Directed by Casey Patrick Tebo, it features transexual model/actress Ximena Olivares, Miss Teen California Nicole Jattsis, fetish model/actress Cece LaRue, actress Michelle Duncan, bi-sexual actress Beatrice Munoz, and sideshow performer Jason Brott aka The Penguin Boy.

Eighteen years on and it's safe to say GALACTIC is a helluva lot more than a pedestrian jam band. Drummer Stanton Moore and his cohorts bring the funk with plenty of their NOLA sauce on their latest single, "Dolla Diva," with some righteous vocal help from David Shaw and Maggie Koerner. Currently on tour.

Some songs beg for the repeat button and so it is with this infectious folk-pop nugget from Side Saddle AKA Ian McGuiness, the pop maestro from Astoria, Queens, NY. Download this track for free on SoundCloud until you BUY The Postcard EP which dropped on March 25th.

Walter Martin has been woodshedding as the multi-instrumentalist in The Walkmen, but has finally decided to step out solo. One can't help but catch the Nancy (Sinatra) & Lee (Hazlewood) vibe, especially since Karen O. (Yeah Yeah Yeahs) lends her sweet, sweet yodels. My favorite Americana song of this new year, so far. We're All Young Together CD drops on May 13th.

Hard to believe that Morrissey's seminal third solo album, Your Arsenal, was released in 1992. Produced by Bowies's Spider from Mars guitarist and arranger Mick Ronson, it was a massive success in the US. The "definitive master" of that album was released by Rhino Entertainment on premium vinyl, CD, and digital download. The CD includes a previously unreleased live DVD concert from October 31st, 1991 from the Shoreline Amphitheatre in Mountain View, CA.

Yes, one more snow is expected before Easter, always happens, but this percolating, hypnotic synth-pop tune (think New Order) from I Am Snow Angel (producer, vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Julie Kathryn) should keep most cold-weather bound folks de-iced.

Singer/songwriter/pianist Judith Owen proudly wears her troubadour influences -- Carole King, Laura Nyro, Joni -- on her sleeve. Hey, being informed by such grand company only works when you can deliver. And deliver she does on her latest solo effort, Ebb & Flow. She even enlisted one of the best L.A. backing bands ever -- bassist Leland Sklar, drummer Russ Kunkel, and guitarist Waddy Wachtel. "I've Never Been to Texas" is one of my favorite songs from her soon-to-be-released, delightful soft rock album. She's currently on tour with Mr. Sklar. Don't miss her!

Hope these tunes warm your bodies and souls.