Hemifrån

week.46

Nichole Wagner  "And The Sky Caught Fire"  (Starcatcher Music)

"The Austin based singer songwriter Nichole Wagner delivers emotionally intense lyrics, spiked with hard truths, bookended by her soulfully broad, raspy tinged vocals and thoughtful arrangements....."

- Kenneth Bremer / Blue Desert -


"Nichole Wagner's 'And The Sky Caught Fire' is an impressive debut, and if this is a taster of what lies ahead, she's going to be turning a lot of heads....."

- Mike Davies / Fatea Magazine -


"There is that voice, world aware, conscious, and with just a tinge of twang....."

- Jonathan Frahm / For Folk's Sake -


"Austin, Texas, has since forever been the breeding ground for musical talent and singer songwriter Nichole Wagner is one of its latest discoveries, her first full album ‘And The Sky Caught Fire’ consists of 9 excellent own compositions and a terrific cover version of the Warren Zevon classic ‘Reconsider Me’, we will for sure be hearing a lot more from this big talent in the coming years, and honestly, we don’t mind....."

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -

 

week.45

Bodinrocker  "Eye To Eye"  (Bearman Music)

“'Eye To Eye' is the brand new studio album by Swedish rocker Anders Bodin, a.k.a Bodinrocker, this is his 4th album, and he is known for his straightforward rock, combining tasty guitar riffs with crystal clear melodies....."

- Kenneth Bremer / Blue Desert -


"Sometimes this is like a merrier Status Quo, since there's a blues rocking base in a number of songs, 'Vacation', 'Got No Time' and 'Roller Coaster Ride' are fine examples, occasional tunes have some E.L.O. in them, but I dare say a vibe of The Sparks, as well, at least slightly, I also like the soft melodic rocker 'Lazy Day' which is like a more commercial Eric Clapton tune, although not being what I normally enrichen my music collection with, this is good quality music that many people can like."

- Ola Gränshagen / Melodic Net -


 "Bodinrocker know their way round a catchy melody, and the likes of 'Brown Bear', the Who inflected 'Life’s Not Fair' and 'Got No Time' with its echoes of the late 60's Brit poprock of The Move, are all very listenable....."

- Mike Davies / Roots & Branches -


"Timing is everything in music, and 'Eye To Eye' came along just at the perfect time for me to appreciate Bodin’s distinctive singing style, alongside his top quality songwriting, which somehow manages to make music fun again....."

- Alan Harrison / The Rocking Magpie -


"Straightforward catchy rock songs are the trademark of Swedish band Bodinrocker, as can be heard on their 4th album 'Eye To Eye', in the style of their own big idols 'Status Quo, this quartet enjoys to deliver fun and pleasure to all those who are attending their live shows."

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -

 

week.44

Kate Campbell  "Damn Sure Blue"  (Large River Music)

"Damn sure good!"

- Mike Davies / Fatea Magazine -


"In my humble opinion Kate Campbell is always described as a folk singer, but believe me, she is much, much more than just a folk singer, as this, her 19th album (19th!) proves, she can melt all of her musical influences into something that transcends that rather tired and cumbersome writing style with ease and grace."

- Alan Harrison / The Rocking Magpie -


"This may not bring a lot of new fans to Kate Campbell’s music, but will surely please those who have encountered her music in the past, and will again in the future on the strength of this album."

- Stephen Rapid / Lonesome Highway -

"Just listen to the title track, 'Damn Sure Blue' or 'Long Slow Train' and you’ll agree with me that the ghost of Cash has taken over Kate Campbell....."

Mr Blue Boogie / BillyBop -


"Just by the creative selection of the songs that Kate Campbell is covering on her latest record, ‘Damn Sure Blue’, she is showing how well she knows the glorious history of the american folk and country music, but you may easily accept our opinion that her own compositions on this album will soon also belong to that legendary portfolio of traditional top songs."

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -


"A soundscape built on the three cornerstones, country, blues and folk, a collection of intelligent thoughts on big US social issues, a super cast of musicians, her voice always carries a strength, an emotionnal power, an irresistible charm, her vocal signature is always a highlight, an excellent album, really....."

- Mike Penard / Radio I.S.A. FM -

 

week.43

Citizen K  "III"  (Paraply Records)

"As a collection of indelible pop melodies and timeless rock arrangements, Citizen K's brand new album 'III' is a breathtaking music classic of the highest magnitude....."

- Robert S Silverstein / mwe3.com -


"The 3rd studio album from Klas Qvist and his Citizen K trademark is called 'III', and as expected, 'Citizen K III' is the best album yet from this Swedish pop artist....."

- Kenneth Bremer / Blue Desert -


"Think ELO, Beatles and Beach Boys when comparing the tracks on album 'III' from Swedish pop musician Klas Qvist aka Citizen K, a bunch of pleasant pop and rock riffs are following each other quickly on the 3rd record from this man whose heart is strongly attached to the music of the 60's and 70's."

- Valere Sampermans / Rootstime -

 

week.42

Allan Thomas  "Two Sides To Every Story"  (Black Bamboo Recordings)

"On his brand new album, 'Two Sides To Every Story', Allan Thomas is blending elements of soul, blues, jazz, rock and singer songwriter, and the resulting strong album contains 8 songs with vocals and 7 instrumentals....."

- Arnaud Leger / Westcoast Rendezvous -


“7 instrumental tracks and 8 vocal songs are forming the 6th album 'Two Sides To Every Story' of the American singer songwriter Allan Thomas, he offers a variety of music genres, ranging from pop to jazz, blues to soul and rock, which makes this record very enjoyable and easy listening.“

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -


"Written and recorded over the last 6 years, 'Two Sides To Every Story' by Alan Thomas, could possibly be his most far reaching album yet....."

- Kenneth Bremer / Blue Desert -

 

week.41

Judith Owen  "redisCOVERed"  (Do Music/Twanky Records)

"Simple, nuanced and damn near perfect, 'RedisCOVERed' has met and occasionally exceeded expectations, perhaps next time, Judith Owen will get to my request to cover Richard Thompson and Steely Dan....."

- Preston Frazier / Something Else -


"Given that Judith Owen's family motto is 'Ego Non Karaoke', which translates as 'I don’t do karaoke', it may seem strange that Judith Owen has recorded an album of cover songs, but when you hear them, you understand why, each song means something to singer songwriter and pianist Owen, which is why she interprets the familiar melodies and lyrics of the pop songs to her own unmistakable style....."

- Clive Morgan / The Telegraph -


"To say this song selection is eclectic in an understatement, but the beauty of 'redisCOVERed' is that it takes the diverse and fuses them together flawlessly, covers collections can often be bland and boring, but in the arms of a musical genius of Judith Owen's pedigree, it feels exciting and invigorating....."

- Jeremy Williams-Chalmers / The Yorkshire Times -

 

week.40

Curse Of Lono  "As I Fell"  (Submarine Cat Records)

"This is a deeply compelling record that totally pulls the listener into its spell, the songs and arrangements are complex, some visit dark places others are less bleak, but all say one thing, play again, as there’s more to discover....."

- Lyndon Bolton / No Depression -


"This is not a doomy, dour or depressing collection but a defiant and admirably adult one, shining a light into the darkness in search of hope and dreams....."

- Kevin Bourke / Americana UK -


"Having made a striking and hugely acclaimed debut with last year's Severed, Curse Of Lono return with an even stronger follow up, recorded out in the Joshua Tree desert and balancing familiar themes of love and loss with new narrative vistas, as well as further reflections of the singer's heroin and methadone past....."

- Mike Davies / Fatea Magazine -


"Any or all success that this album brings to this quintet is well deserved, and I for one will be truly ecstatic for them, even if it means me having to sit at the back of a huge arena every 5 years in London or Birmingham, rather than hanging out with them in the bar, like we did at the Cluny....."

- Alan Harrison / The Rocking Magpie -

 

week.39

Steve Future  "7 Cities"  (Blue Future Music)

"There are some nice gems to be unearthed here, like the acoustic groove of 'Black Water' and the electric attack of 'Rat Poison', with fine harmonica parts by Steve and tasty organ by John Austin, and there are  a number of musicians across the tracks here, but the overall guidance and direction of Steve Future is ever present....."

- Paul McGee / Lonesome Highway -


"Swedish bluesrocker Steve Future can reflect back on a musical career of 34 years and 7 studio albums, his 8th one, '7 Cities', is a compilation of the best songs from his 3 latest released albums, these songs vary from blues to pop and rock, and some of them truly deserve to get some more attention on the so called better radio stations."

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -


"This album has a rich soundscape, and there are some bluesy tracks that are really, really good, and, yes, the front cover is beautiful....."

- Mike Penard / Radio I.S.A. FM -

 

week.38

Ben Bostick  "Hellfire"  (Simply Fantastic Music)

"'Hellfire' is a threat to safe suburban family life, a lashing out at the establishment and a damn good record, it’s whiskey for breakfast and it’s dancing with the devil, Ben Bostick writes songs that sustain the little man as he wrestles with the protectionism of a pipe dream, and right now America needs men like him to stand up and be counted....."

- Tim Merricks / Americana UK -


"Ben Bostick has created an album here that comfortably sits in several camps, alt country, rock'n'roll, countrypolitan and, best of all, classic country, and will appeal to fans of all those genres....."

- Alan Harrison / The Rocking Magpie -

"Ben Bostick has a wicked and wry sense of looking at things, and amidst a gumbo of country, rockabilly, blues and rock'n'roll, we are treated to plenty of drinkin’, hard partying, lustful love flings, poor boy messes and just downright bitter and mean men, loners set to do you harm....."

- Paul McGee / Lonesome Highway -

 

week.37

Bobbo Byrnes  "Two Sides To This Town"  (Song & Whispers)

"Not for the first, nor, I guess, last time this year, that I’ve made another amazing discovery, and now can’t wait to shout the name Bobbo Byrnes from the Rocking Magpie HQ rooftop, you gonna love this album, trust me, I know....."

- Alan Harrison / The Rocking Magpie -


"Bobbo Byrnes' 'Two Sides To This Town' is a classic piece of american heartland rock, that was my first thought when hearing the opening cut of this album, yes, this is american rock at it's finest....."

- Gabor Kleinbloesem / Strutterzine -


"Handsome melodies and beautiful arrangements that connect americana with rock, beautiful album....."

- Lambert Smits / Keys & Chords -


"This record is all about good, solid, nowadays americana, the country seems to be divided, and somebody had to put this situation to music, and that’s exactly what Bobbo Byrnes does, and that’s why we keep on thinking of John Mellencamp, whenever we spin this CD….."

- Dani Heyvaert / Rootstime -

 

week.36

Son Of The Velvet Rat  "The Late Show"  (Fluff & Gravy/Mint 400)

"This is a great live recording from Son Of The Velvet Rat, a band that already impressed last year with the album 'Dorado', this is americana, folk and rock at its very best....."

- Lambert Smits / Keys & Chords -


"The roots of the band ‘Son Of The Velvet Rat’ are situated in Graz, Austria, but singer songwriter Georg Altziebler and his wife Heike Binder moved to Joshua Tree in California where they cooperated with producer Joe Henry for their fantastic 2017 album 'Dorado', now the band presents a live recorded album ‘The Late Show’, where 5 songs from their latest album are performed, next to 6 great songs from their previously released records, this is a real must have CD for all fans of magnificent americana and indie rock music."

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -


"I discovered this treasure of a band a couple of years ago, and this new release is a very interesting live album, it captures the magic of a sound, an exceptional rendition of these extraordinary vocalists and musicians, they are able to generate mental pictures for you, and to put an exceptional passion in the delivery, a rare, precious band….."

- Mike Penard / Radio I.S.A. FM -

 

week.35

Mike Aiken  "Wayward Troubadour"  (Northwind Records)

"This is an accomplished album of roots music that will further enhance Mike Aiken's often praised body of work, it's the work of a troubadour who finds much to enjoy in life and conveys that feeling in his music....."

- Stephen Rapid / Lonesome Highway -


"It took Mike Aiken close to 3 years to record the 11 tracks for his 7th album 'Wayward Troubadour', the stories that are told in the 8 own compositions and 3 cover songs are heartfelt and come from real life experiences, all that makes this record more than worthwhile to wait for, although we sincerely hope that its follow up album will come a bit faster....."

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -


”Mike Aiken sounds true, his chronicles of life sounds authentic, he is a real pro who offers us a new, very good, rootsy album…..”

- Mike Penard / Radio I.S.A. FM -

"If anybody has earned the title of 'Wayward Troubadour', Mike Aiken has, put this record on and become part of the journey....."

- Branimir Lokner / Time Machine Music -

 

week.34

Tom Peterson  "Black Hills Gold"  (MoonHouse Records)

"Anyone who has ever heard a Tom Peterson song recognizes immediately that this is a songwriter’s songwriter, a master wordsmith, who is worthy of every accolade the creative community bestows....."

- Kenneth Bremer / Blue Desert -


"We surely do hope that this is not the only album by Tom Peterson....."

- Sis Van Hoof / Keys & Chords -


"Having written numerous songs for other american folk and country bands, singer songwriter Tom Peterson found that the time had come for an album with his own songs, 'Black Hills Gold' was recorded in Austin, TX, with several famous local musicians and turned out to become a very pleasant acquaintance with an excellent songwriter and performer."

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -


"Tom Peterson's 'Black Hills Gold' is an excellent album recorded with a great cast of local Texas musicians....."

- Mike Penard / Radio I.S.A. FM -


"Tom Peterson’s career trajectory hasn’t led to widespread name recognition, yet, but his talent is true, his writing is world class and his audience is loyal....."

- Branimir Lokner / Time Machine Music -

 

week.33

Paul Messinger  "Love Will Find You : 9 Degrees Of Relationship" 
(Paul Messinger Net)

"Paul Messinger is a poet, songwriter, vocalist, and instrumentalist, originally from New York, now based in Chapel Hill, NC, he is known as one of the early proponents of the Howard Levy approach to playing diatonic harmonica, and writes nuanced, character driven songs in varied styles....."

- Kenneth Bremer / Blue Desert -


"Poet, singer and songwriter Paul Messinger has dedicated his latest record to his own wife, the love of his life, it is unclear to us whether they have experienced all 9 emotions and feelings in their marriage, but the way he is singing about them on these 9 tracks is anyway extraordinary and touching, excellent work, Paul!"

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -


"Paul Messinger is a true artist with a real creativity, his musical eclectism has to be discovered by true music lovers....."

- Mike Penard / Radio I.S.A. FM -


week.32

Calle Karlsson  "Monterey Shoreline"  (Paraply Records)

"This is very american and very catchy, Calle Karlsson is a master of melody, something sorely missing from many new artists, Calle’s vocals are delightful, and he could just as easily be a singer from Austin or Nashville....."

- John Apice / No Depression -


"This is a vocal and instrumental pleasure, infectious melodies, superb harmonies and rich and chiseled arrangements, Calle Karlsson is really of solid value....."

- Mike Penard / Radio I.S.A. FM -

"On May 11th, 2018, Calle Karlsson released his 7th CD, "Monterey Shoreline", a 5 track CD EP, that Calle recorded with comrades, relatives and friends from all over the westcoast of Sweden."

- Arnaud Leger / Westcoast Rendezvous -

"Having been almost constantly on stage performing his songs, Swedish singer songwriter Calle Karlsson has since the start of his career launched 6 albums, and now number 7, a CD EP called 'Monterey Shoreline', is available, a 5 tracks record, made with his friends, and with the help of Patrick Rydman and Annika Fehling, 2 other famous Swedish singer songwriters."

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -

"Swedish singer songwriter Calle Karlsson has just released his new mini album 'Monterey Shoreline' on Paraply Records, out of Borås, Sweden."

- Kenneth Bremer / Blue Desert -

 

week.31

Mona Wallin  "To Build A Fire"  (Heatherhall Records)

"Mona Wallin's presented material here is vivid and colorful, with fine arrangements, including 2 songs that, in my humble opinion, deserves repeatable listener’s attention, 'Everybody Knows My Name' and 'Gold Dust'....."

- Branimir Lokner / Time Machine Music -

"Mona Wallin is a very good discovery, her voice on these guitar lines is just a pleasure, this is a CD that shines  with musicality, a sound that just blows you away....."

- Mike Penard / Radio I.S.A. FM

"Swedish singer and songwriter Mona Wallin is coming as a real pleasant surprise for us, on her solo debut, ‘To Build A Fire’, she is offering 8 own compositions in americana style, and some of them are really mindblowing and demonstrate that we will for sure hear much more of this young talent in the near future."

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -

"Mona Wallin has a pleasant clean voice and back in the 70's US labels would have easily snapped her up, just listen to 'Six Black Horses' and you can hear an angel singing! This kinda music is quite popular nowadays as well, so who knows, in a few years time Mona will also be a household name!"

- Gabor Kleinbloesem / Strutterzine -

"Mona Wallin's path to a musician’s life has been winding, and may at first appear to have almost led her astray, 4 years of university studies in forestry seemed to lead to a life of profit margins, production and pay checks, but in the end, the forest beckoned for other reasons, with its serenity, its beauty, and its quiet songs....."

- Kenneth Bremer / Blue Desert -

 

week.30

A.F.T.  "In The Universe"  (Rootsy)

"What a very pleasant surprise, this project is the work of a trio named A.F.T., led by Annika Fehling, who has an impressive body of work to her name and a back catalogue that is deserving of close scrutiny if this particular project is anything to go by....."

- Paul McGee / Lonesome Highway -

"A.F.T.  is a new trio containing of some of Gotland’s finest musicians and songwriters....."

- Kenneth Bremer / Blue Desert -

"After the release of her 2 latest albums as solo artist, Swedish singer songwriter Annika Fehling has now opted to perform together with Christer Jonasson and Robert Wahlström as a trio called A.F.T., and the debut album 'In The Universe' is an impressive collection of 9 lo fi and instrumentally minimalistic songs, with meaningful and poetic lyrics, all self penned by Annika."

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -


week.29

Annie Keating  "Ghost Of The Untraveled Road"  (Annie Keating)

"From the stunning ‘Ghosts Of The Untraveled Road’ through ‘Forever Loved’ and ‘Kindness Of Strangers’ to ‘Sting Of Hindsight’ and ‘Forget My Name’ there’s time and thought forged into an outstanding piece of work....."

- Tom Franks / FolkWords -


"I like it when artists use the EP format to do something different, perhaps release a few songs that really don’t fit on any other album they have, but still fit together, the misfit songs, maybe even one that’s out of character for the artist....."

- Roy Peak / The Rocking Magpie -


"This is a 5 track release that adds another fine touchstone in the career of this very talented artist....."

- Paul McGee / Lonesome Highway -


"'Ghost Of The Untraveled Road’ is 5 little subtle movies, combined with a magnificent soundtrack, or vice versa!"

- Jan Coonen / Keys & Chords -


"The records of Annie Keating are musical pearls that deserve to be heard on each self respecting radio station, and the 5 tracks on her latest EP ‘Ghost Of The Untraveled Road’ could, and maybe should, as well appear on the albums of great country and americana stars like Emmylou Harris, John Prine, Gillian Welch or Patty Griffin."

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -


week.28

Flav Martin & Jerry Marotta  "Soul Redemption"  (Jersville Entertainment)

"The major part of this album is really good, the production by Jerry Marotta is really good, and the musicians are of course flawless, the guys have created a sound that includes quite a lot, Tony Levin’s bass sound is lovely and brings an extera dimension somehow....."

- Ola Gränshagen / Melodic Net -


"'Soul Redemption' is the debut release from Flav Martin and Jerry Marotta, the duo harmoniously blends modern adult rock with traditional world pop, whether performed in a café in Italy or on the polo fields of Indio, these songs would feel comfortably at home in either environment....."

- Kenneth Bremer / Blue Desert -


"Lovely peaceful rock songs with a touch of world music, acoustic guitarist and vocalist Flav Martin and his buddy Jerry Marotta on percussion blends rock, pop and world music to a soul and mind purification,
enjoy....."

- Marino Serdons / Keys & Chords -

"On their first joint album ‘Soul Redemption, singer songwriter and acoustic guitar player Flav Martin and his friend, drummer and producer Jerry Marotta, have recorded 9 catchy and warm sounding songs....."

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -

"Jerry Marotta's rhythmic drumming and world music inspired percussion complement the acoustic flavor of Flav Martin's guitar....."

- Arnaud Leger / Westcoast Rendezvous -

 

week.27

Sawdust & Rust  "Leaving A Memory" (Tutl)

"Melodic and accessible, this is poetic, catchy songwriting with lots of rootsy, folky elements and a touch of good old nordic melancholy thrown into the mix, while never forgetting the importance of a memorable chorus....."

- Kenneth Bremer / Blue Desert -


"Originated from a chance meeting at Greenland between Swedish singer songwriter Patrick Rydman, and his colleague from the Faroe Islands, Benjamin Petersen, Sawdust & Rust, is an excellent folk pop enesemble that sounds less rustic than the name suggests, but because of the beautiful songs, does not taste less good....."

- Eric Van Domburg Scipio / Heaven Magazine -


"'Leaving A Memory' was written on the Faroe Islands, together with a lot of friends, so it’s not really a solo album, however, the best songs are the acoustic folky ones....."

- Marino Serdons / Keys & Chords -


"Easy melodies on a rootsy and folky pop, I really like Patrick's catchy voice on songs with a poetic dimension....."

- Mike Penard / Radio I.S.A. FM -

"Welcome to a world where creation and decay walk hand in hand, welcome to Sawdust & Rust....."

- Branimir Lokner / Time Machine Music -


week.26

Mark Huff  "Stars For Eyes"  (Exodus Empire)

"Mark Huff gives the impression of being one of those people who can pick up a guitar and make up a song on the spot that will be dripping with hooks and full of memorable melodies, he makes it sound so easy,  as if he’s not even trying, the songs just flow out of him, flitting between styles without missing a beat....."

- David Cowling / Americana UK -


"Americana country with dashes of rock is what you get when you place a Mark Huff record on your player, and with his insatiable appetite to stir things up, and push outward, he reminds me somewhat of journeyman Mark Olsen and the like, hugely innovative, and as mentioned a man not to rest on his laurels, Huff and a list of esteemed pickers is ever brave....."

- Maurice Hope / Flyin' Shoes -


"So, into uncharted territory we go, to musical infinity and beyond? Confused? You won’t be, as Mark Huff’s songwriting and delightful voice will carry you through like a warm summer breeze....."

- Alan Harrison / The Rocking Magpie -


"Put an acoustic guitar in Mark Huff's hands and you will have a wonderful evening, on ‘Stars For Eyes’ the musical support of slide guitar and pedal steel  provides an extra dimension to his love songs....."

- Marino Serdons / Keys & Chords -


"'Stars For Eyes' is the 9th album by Nashville based singer songwriter Mark Huff and there are very good reasons to believe that it could become seen as the best album in his career, the 10 self penned songs are sounding very contemporary, modern and as a listener the lyrics are addressing you directly and know to keep your attention and to excite you, the influences of stars like Tom Petty, Bob Dylan and Leonard Cohen on Mark Huff’s work do strongly contribute to the excellent quality of this record....."

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -


"Very good vocals on all of the tracks, and the solos are moments of pure pleasure, excellent….."

- Mike Penard / Radio I.S.A. FM -


"Pretty melodic lines and repeatable choruses on most of the material are presented here and there are 2 tracks with strong radio possibilities....."

- Branimir Lokner / Time Machine Music -

 

week.25

I'm Kingfisher  "Transit"  (Fading Trails Recordings)

"I’m Kingfisher has developed the ability to turn every day thoughts, feelings and emotions into powerful, yet tender and dignified tracks, with a craftsmanship way ahead of his own years, a testament to his raw talent, and it is only a matter of time before he is a household name....."

- David Stevenson / Americana UK -


"This is graceful return, one weighed down by experience, while retaining a sense of lingering innocence.....

- Robin Murray / Clash Music -


"I find myself increasingly impressed on repeated listening with this entire project, and you will not be disappointed upon purchase....."

- Paul McGee / Lonesome Highway -


"With all those years of experience in love, life and music now under his belt, "Transit" is sure to be I'm Kingfisher's most accomplished release yet....."

- Rob Hakimiam / The Four Oh Five -


week.24

Love On Drugs  "Solder"  (Paraply Records)

"Love On Drugs has been compared to Karl Wallinger’s World Party and it makes sense, since they, just like Thomas Pontén and his friends, tend to mix influences from both sides of the pond in their music....."

- Kenneth Bremer / Blue Desert -


"Following up on his debut album, 'I Think I’m Alone Now', Swedish singer songwriter Thomas Pontén is surprising us now with an even better 2nd album called 'Solder', he is performing a nice variation of 8 new self penned songs and a heartbreaking version of the beautiful song 'Night Ride Home', a classic written and performed by Joni Mitchell....."

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -


"This is a joyful ride through nostalgia of the last five decades, very enjoyable, I particularly like it when Thomas and his friends lean heavily on americana....."

- Mike Penard / Radio I.S.A. FM -


week.23

Eva Hillered  "New Me"  (Hill Songs)

"Highly regarded in her native Sweden, Eva Hillered’s musical style ticks both the folk and country boxes with an easy listening charm, characterised best here on the title track and Rosanne Cash sounding 'Swede Hollow'.....

- Declan Culliton / Lonesome Highway -


"Eva Hillered's brand new album 'New Me' is highly recommended to fans of both folk and americana....."

- Patrick van de Wiele / Keys & Chords -


"Eva Hillered's brand new album 'New Me' is a tribute to the healing power of music and can be placed musically in the folk and americana genre....."

- Kenneth Bremer / Blue Desert -

 

week.22

Johanna Sillanpaa  "From This Side"  (Chronograph Records)

"It’s smart, it’s soulful, it’s jazz, and for every style of music that Johanna Sillanpaa explores, there’s a vibrant color in her voice to match, and her vocals are expertly clear, gently raw, and yet intensely bold....."

- Kenneth Bremer / Blue Desert -


"Johanna Sillanpaa's music has a very high entertainment value, musically valuable, and in the relatively simple arrangement, without a lot of bells and whistles, lies the strength of the songs, which radiate a lot of beauty....."

- Wolfgang Giese / Musik An Sich -


"This is jazz with lot of style, original compositions with some covers of jazz standards....."

- Patrick van de Wiele / Keys & Chords -


week.21

Melanie Dekker  "Secret Spot"  (Elephant Ears Entertainment)

"With her writing talent and voice Melanie Dekker could compete with many of the current crop of crossover artists, she has opened for Diana Krall and Faith Hill, which attests to the fact that her music can fit into a number of formats, she does this by believing in herself and her music and finding the secret spot where that works....."

- Stephen Rapid / Lonesome Highway -


"Melanie Dekker's music is sort of folky, definitely singer songwriter fare, but with a melodic edgy pop sensitivity to it too. Confused? Don’t be, these are the sort of songs that we bought in our millions by Alanis Morissette, Sheryl Crow and, of course, Joni Mitchell."

- Alan Harrison / The Rocking Magpie -


"Quality and craftsmanship are two definitions that can be applied to each of the albums released by Canadian singer songwriter Melanie Dekker, and that is now again valid for her latest album 'Secret Spot', on which there are evidently no major shifts in style and the songs are lying in the line of expectations, but when it is all OK, who wants to get anything else to enjoy the work of this terrific musician?"

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -


week.20

Ajay Mathur  "Little Boat"  (Yak'yak)

"Ajay Mathur is a true citizen of the world, born in India, living in Switzerland and creating his own version of americana with Zeppelin-esque guitars, exotic instruments, catchy songwriting and lyrics that speak to the heart....."

- Kenneth Bremer / Blue Desert -

"Ajay Mathur's 'Little Boat' is a beautiful western pop album with some eastern influences, Ajay Mathur is responsible for the warm compositions and Mary Lou Von Wyl for the strong lyrics, a perfect match!"

- Marino Serdons / Keys & Chords -


"The Indian roots of Swiss citizen Ajay Mathur can be heard clearly in the sound of the songs that he recorded for his 4th album 'Little Boat', the offering varies from indie rock, psychedelic rock, blues, pop, cajun and americana, more than enough choices for everyone." 

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -


"Ajay Mathur is impossible to categorize, original, unconventionnal, but very talented, the only way to know if you can hook to his music is to listen to his rich soundscape, this is a kind of artist who asks you to be open minded."

- Mike Penard / Radio I.S.A. FM -

 

week.19

Martin Kerr  "Better Than Brand New"  (Martin Kerr Music Ltd)

"Martin Kerr's now looking to expand his horizons, which, given the exposure, shouldn't be too hard for an album that walks the poppier, radio friendly side of the folk fence, a soulful voice that variously calls to mind early James Taylor, John Mayer or pre bombastic Chris De Burgh, easy on the ear melodies that know their way round a memorable hook and chorus....."

- Mike Davies / Fatea Magazine -

”Beautiful songs, nice arrangements, great production, this album is an absolute must…..”

- Holly Moors / Moors Magazine -


"Martin Kerr has a strong, powerful voice on tracks with big, big sounds or a gentle, intimate voice on others with just a guitar ....."

- Mike Penard / Radio I.S.A. FM -

 

week.18

Meadow Creek  "Til Death Do Us Part"  (Meadow Creek Music)

"Meadow Creek are not selling anything that's not readily available in the country music store, but they certainly warrant having a prominent display to attract the browsers and not be hidden away in the 'and also' section....." 

- Mike Davies / Fatea Magazine -


"This album is a lot about love, the love between two songwriters, and their common love and passion for country music....."

- Jonas Öhman / Om Country -


”The highlights of this album are when Linda and Peter sing together, something they often do here, this is an album that deserves a lot of attention…..”

- Mattias Gustavsson / Ung Tro -


"Some records becomes close and dear friends to you, and this is surely one of them….."

- Robert Ryttman / Zero Magazine -


week.17

Cina Samuelson  "Sweet Mama, Elvis & Me"  (Cool Country Music)

"On this brand new single Cina Samuelson’s voice is fresh and modern, both tunes also deserve repeatable listener attention, especially if you are a follower of old school country music....."

- Branimir Lokner / Time Machine Music -


"This is easy flowing country music, easy to sing along to, easy to air, and I will air both tracks."

- Mike Penard / Radio I.S.A. FM -


"With already 4 full length albums released, this new single is hopefully the sign Cina Samuelson's fans were waiting for, the title track 'Sweet Mama, Elvis & Me' is a nice country rocking tune that makes us all want to dance, while on the virtual flip side, 'How Long Is Forever', Cina brings a another self penned tune in the classic style, as stated before this might be the sign fans are waiting for and is now eagerly waiting for that new album to come out, in the meantime you can dig your own collection and enjoy the older albums once more."

- Mr Blue Boogie / BillyBop -


week.16

Mary Battiata & Little Pink  "The Heart, Regardless"  (Little Pink, The Band)

"There is no filler here, it is all top notch, and Mary Battista’s writing is emotive and takes a clear view of relationships, affairs of the heart, that fall on both sides of the divide that delineates the ones that work, the ones that don’t and the ones that could go either way....."

- Stephen Rapid / Lonesome Highway -


"Could we please see Mary Battiata & Little Pink over here in the U.K. this summer I ask? I for one would be most interested to catch them live....."

- Maurice Hope / Flyin' Shoes -


"This is a lovely album that, while it may be mining generic country territory, has come up with a real motherlode....."

- Mike Davies / Fatea Magazine -


"In the world of country music, the songs that Mary Battiata & Little Pink have recorded on their album ‘The Heart, Regardless’ belong to the best ones that are these days available within this genre, next to her exquisite vocal performance, there is also excellent instrumentation on accordion, fiddle and banjo to be heard in several tracks on this enjoyable and very professionally created record."

- Dani Heyvaert / Rootstime -


"I am already airing 6 tracks from this wonderful album."

- Mike Penard / Radio I.S.A. FM -

 



week.15

Deborah Henriksson  "Near & Far"  (DHP Records)

"With her crystal clear voice Deborah Henriksson is singing the 10 tracks from her new album 'Near And Far' in an angelic way, and what you hear is definitely a true labour of love.....“

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -

"Deborah Henriksson has a voice that gives a unique dimension to this album's rich soundscape....."

- Mike Penard / Radio I.S.A. FM -

"This music finds its cement and individuality in the voice which is unmistakably her own.....”

- Branimir Lokner / Time Machine Music -

 

week.14

Kyle Carey  "The Art Of Forgetting" (Riverboat Records/World Music Network)

"Kyle Carey's 3rd release, 'The Art Of Forgetting', is a confident and fully realised project and highlights the growing development of a mature talent....."

- Paul McGee / Lonesome Highway -

"This is a beautiful album filled with beautiful music that tugs at the heartstrings, the Gaelic is at the centre of it, and you sense at the centre of Carey too, long may it remain there....."

- Jeremy Searle / Americana UK -

"Among the many highlights, and there’s more emerging everyday as the music of this stylish performer melts into my subconscious....."

- Maurice Hope / Flyin' Shoes -

"As a whole, this album is gem of luxurious sounds, songs of love in many of its forms, natural imagery, reflected in the greenness of the cover art, and it stands on a highly trained knowledge of both Celtic and American traditions that allows Carey to create something unforced, "The Art Of Forgetting" is for listening to, not an academic exercise, and rather lovely."

- Mike Wistow / folking.com -

"New Hampshire born Kyle Carey's 3rd album effortlessly combines the essence of Celtic and Appalachian folk to create a hybrid sound which has been dubbed Gaelic Americana."

- Martin Raybould / Whisperin' & Hollerin' -

"Celtic and Appalachian folk songs in Scottish Gaelic Americana style, that is the favourite music offered to us by Brooklyn, New York based singer songwriter Kyle Carey on her latest album ‘The Art Of Forgetting’, that forgetting is, however, something that will not be easily done when you have heard her exquisite performance and her crystal clear voice on this excellent record with a few songs that almost nobody can understand, but which have been enriched with 9 tracks in heartfelt poetic English language.

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -

 

week.13

The LYNNeS  "Heartbreak Song For The Radio"  (The LYNNeS)

"In protracting the wares of The LYNNeS with such a large degree of panache, Lynne Hanson and Lynn Miles have created a mini entity that brims with high quality....."

- David / 3 Chords & The Truth -


"All in all, this is a fabulous album to open up 2018 with, and if it is a sign of things to come, then it will be a good year for both music and The LYNNeS!"

- Rory Stanbridge / Fatea Magazine -


"The LYNNeS strong vocal harmonies and storytelling are a joy, and whether they are serving up soft and gentle sounds, or grittier, dark edged stuff, one thing is constant and that is quality."

- David Blue / Flyin' Shoes -


"If this album doesn’t figure among Canada’s next Juno Awards there is less justice in this world than I thought."

- Maurice Hope / Flyin's Shoes -


"Individually, both of The LYNNeS are formidable forces in contemporary country, together they just might be unstoppable."

- Mike Daviesfolking.com -


"As we know both of The LYNNeS are accomplished singers and songwriters in their own right, but together they move up several rungs of the success ladder with ease and grace."

- Alan Harrison / The Rocking Magpie -


"Sometimes it still happens to me that I am completely unexpected gabberflasted by a new record, and that is exactly what just happened with the debut album Heartbreak Song For The Radio from Lynn Miles and Lynne Hanson, a.k.a. the Canadian duo The LYNNeS, they perform in a harmonious way their 10 self penned songs that all stick like strong glue to your mind."

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -


week.12

Caroline Wickberg  "I'm Not Mad"  (Caroline Wickberg) 

For a self produced disc, the sound is very interesting, the intertwining of the guitars is beautiful, the voice vaguely recalls Margo Timmins, and some songs go to roar in the orbit of the Cowboy Junkies…..”

- Roberto Anghinoni / Late For The Sky -


"Let yourself be swept into the beautiful imagined landscapes that Caroline Wickberg manages to create with her songs."

- Freddy Vandervelpen / Rootsville -

"With a 5 song EP titled ‘I’m Not Mad’, Swedish singer songwriter Carolien Wickberg tries to put her 1st steps into the world of modern pop music, the emphasis on her etheric voice rules in the songs, which are in general very soberly instrumented, it's a good 1st shot, but the target still needs to be fully hit for a future full CD.“

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -


”If I have to look for a phrase to classify Caroline Wickberg’s music stylistically, maybe indie folk pop would be apt, at least it’s a very interesting mixture of some exciting, intense and relaxing sounds.”

- Wolfgang Giese / Musik An Sich -


"Caroline Wickberg's voice is full of melancholy, mixed with tender tenderness, it's dark, but the intensity develops some light, and I listen really carefully and can not tear me off."

- Tom Arvidsson / Thirsty Boots -


"With strings, bearings and incredibly beautiful, restful songs, Caroline Wickberg gets me wondering how it's possible to write such good music at all....."

- Tilde Hjelm / Popmani -

 

week.11

Backtrack Blues Band  "Make My Home In Florida"  (Harpo Records)

"Really cool and classy live blues album, and a five camera high definition live DVD, featuring the equal talents of harmonica player Sonny Charles and Kid Royal’s blistering guitar skills....."

- Simon Redley / Music Republic Magazine -


"Backtrack Blues Band is one of Florida's longest running and most accomplished blues bands, the quintet's latest masterpiece captures a high energy performance featuring the stellar blues harp and vocals of Sonny Charles, the impressive Texas guitar sounds of Kid Royal, layered over a seamless Chicago style rhythm section."

- Philip Verhaege / Keys & Chords -


"This exciting in concert recording is the next best thing to experiencing them in the flesh!"

- Eric Schuurmans / Rootstime -

 

week.10

Emily Herring  "Gliding"  (Eight 30 Records)

"Album closer 'Getting By' is an openly autobiographical number about only being responsible for yourself and working a day job as a car mechanic to pay the rent that swells the heart as she sings in self affirmation, 'I take pride in what I am', and, as this album amply demonstrates, so she should....."

- Mike Davies / Fatea Magazine -


"Produced by pedal steel, producer legend, Steve Fishell, Austin’s Emily Herring’s latest album, 'Gliding', oozes quality, much quality, and I can't wait to hear more from her, hopefully, she will be over here touring before too long!"

- Maurice Hope / Flyin' Shoes -


"Overall there is a set of different musical directions here that are pulled together by Emily Herring’s striking vocals and the overall collective playing, Emily Herring continues to glide and soar."

- Stephen Rapid / Lonesome Highway -


"Country music and honky tonk in their purest forms, an excellent album for fans of old style country, a beautiful release!"

- Lambert Smits / Keys & Chords -


"In the daytime, Emily Herring is working as an automechanic, but in the evenings she is transforming into an exquisite singer songwriter of honky tonk and country tunes, her 4th album ’Gliding’ with 3 covers and 7 of her own compositions shows that she has a very bright future in the contemporary world of these popular music styles."

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -


week.09

Beth Wimmer  "Bookmark"  (Beth Wimmer)

"This project has no way of failing, in the 1st place, the Beth Wimmer and Mojo Monkeys combination is pure gold, in the 2nd, the songs are too good, given the studio and the various people involved, it flows, beginning to end....."

- Frank Gutch Jr / No Depression -


"Beth Wimmer's sound is essentially folk oriented, and she sings in an attractive tone that suits the songs and arrangements well."

- Paul McGee / Lonesome Highway -

"A bookmark is defined as a something than enables you to return to, or remember a place or a time with ease, this album will make you want to do both."

- Mike Davies / folking.com -

"Beth Wimmer’s ‘Bookmark’ is storytelling with a poetic twist!"

- Jan Coonen / Keys & Chords -


"Inspired by events in her own Life, and by her unlimited fantasy, on her 4th album ‘Bookmark’, singer songwriter Beth Wimmer has once again delivered 9 own penned beauties and one terrific cover version of the David Bowie classic ‘Starman’."

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -


week.08

Lelle Dahlberg  "These Words Are True" (Lelle Dahlberg) 

Lelle Dahlberg finally decided to record some of his own best compositions for this album, and honestly, this album will not be qualified as breathtaking or renovating, but you can be ensured that you will enjoy every single song on it, and some of his exquisite ballads really deserve a place at the top in the charts of today’s country music.”

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -


"Really nice collection of original songs in the country genre with an outlaw wink."

- Lambert Smits / Keys & Chords -


”Nothing new under the sun, but a true, honest singer who sounds better and better on uptempo songs, good sound, I particularly like ’Till We Meet Again'…..”

- Mike Penard / Radio I.S.A. FM -

week.07

Zachary Richard  "Gombo"  (RZ Records/Zach Rich Inc)

"'Gombo' is another remarkable high quality album from zydeco and cajun master Zachary Richard, one of the Louisiana masters in roots music and americana....."

- Peter Jacobs / Keys & Chords -


“Top quality music and meaningful stories are typical features of all the albums that are created by Zachary Richard, the 67 years old singer, songwriter, poet and activist from Lafayette, Louisiana, he is famous for his promotion of the acadian culture and the use of the french language in the state of Louisiana, his 21st studioalbum ‘Gumbo’ reflects all this in 15 fabulous songs which once again show the unlimited skills and expertise of this very engaged and legendary musician.“

- Valére Sampemans / Rootstime -


”Zachary Richard is a monument, a legend at the crossroads of two cultures, his music is absolutely essential in the musical landscape, these new songs are another testimony of the excellence of the man and of the artist…..”

- Mike Penard / Radio I.S.A. -


week.06

Kelsea Ballerini  "Unapologetically" (Black River Entertainment/The Orchard)

"'Unapologetically' might sound to poppy for most of you, and while songs like 'Miss Me More', '“End Of The World' or the  title song will make you think twice about my musical taste, you can’t deny the fact that this album is well crafted, good produced and comes with a radio friendly sound....."

- Mr Blue Boogie / BillyBop -


"After a debut album that delivered 3 number 1 hits, Nashville based pop and country star Kelsea Ballerini is coming with an even better follow up album called ‘Unapologetically'. Also here we can hear several songs that will make it again to the top of the charts. This is a musical talent to closely watch, which in view of her pleasing looks, will not be really too difficult to do."

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -


"Part of what makes 'Unapologetically' so special is that, even after opening for country greats, including Alan Jackson, Lady Antebellum, Tim McGraw, Carrie Underwood and Keith Urban and headlining her own tour, in addition to winning scores of accolades, including an ACM Award, a Billboard Rising Star Award and an ACCA for Breakthrough Female Of The Year, she’s kept in touch with life’s most important truths, and relayed that honesty through songs that make us laugh, make us smile, make us think and make us dance."


- Branimir Lokner / Time Machine Music -


week.05

Keegan McInroe  "A Good Old Fashioned Protest"  (Keegan McInroe)

"Accessible melodies occasionally give this an ironic easy listening feel, while hooks are aplenty, eventually, the smart lyrical content wins the day though, and we are left with the notion ‘for the world’s failing systems lie broke and dying’ and on that note the real reason for the existence of this excellent album has been nailed....."

- David / 3 Chords & The Truth -


"Mixed bag of contemporary protest songs."

- Jeremy Searle / Americana UK -


"Last year saw a welcome return of the protest album and it’s good to see the momentum hasn’t slowed, Texas based Keegan McInroe getting 2018 off to a suitably barbed start with this sparsely arranged 9 track collection of observations and commentary on the state of the world."

- Mike Davies / folking.com -


"A very insightful and rewarding work from an experienced and mature songwriter, worthy of further investigation."

- Paul McGee / Lonesome Highway -


"Timeless and contemporary songs of protest and hope, what a great way to start the new year, 9 highly articulate protest songs and poems about the need to stop wars of all ilks and persuasions around the globe."

- Alan Harrison / The Rocking Magpie -


"Folk songs that incite thinking, Keegan McInroe, Woodie Guthrie reinvented."

- Jan Coonen / Keys & Chords -


"What is wrong with a good established old fashioned protest song? Following the example of pioneering troubadours like Woody Guthrie and Bob Dylan, now also Texan singer songwriter Keegan McInroe wanted to ventilate his opinion in the folk songs on his most recent album ‘A Good Old Fashioned Protest’. Well said and well sung, Keegan!“

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -


week.04

Daisy Chapman  "Good Luck Songs"  (Broken Silence/Songs & Whispers)

"Surprisingly, reviews of this album have to date been very thin on the ground, and it might perhaps have been a better idea to hold off the release until the start of 2018, when critics are looking forward rather than compiling retrospective best of lists, a place on which it most assuredly deserves....."

- Mike Davies / Fatea Magazine -


"'Good Luck Songs' is Daisy Chapman’s 3rd studio album and her 1st for five years. There was a live set a couple of years ago, but Daisy is hardly what you’d call prolific. However, what she lacks in quantity, she more than makes up for in quality.  This is a very fine album."

-Dai Jeffries / folking.com -


"How to define this music?  Perhaps it is chamber folk? Maybe pastoral country? Does it need a box? No, because it is quite simply a joy to discover and that should be enough! Just check out this great talent!"

- Paul McGee / Lonesome Highway -


"This record is simply gorgeous. As is this lady’s voice. She’s one of ours, a British lass from Bristol, and this self penned (but 1) collection of 9 choice cuts, straddles the genres between folk and singer songwriter. She has one of the best voices I have heard in many years. From the off, she’s on fire. The title track kicks off proceedings and her voice soars, with power and passion."

- Simon Redley / Music Republic Magazine -


"Expect a clear, powerful, wide ranging voice, beautiful poetic lyrics, passionate piano playing and heavenly arrangements."

- Lambert Smits / Keys & Chords -


"'Wow!', is the only justified expression of our feelings when listening to the crystal clear voice and the melancholic piano playing of the British singing nightingale Daisy Chapman, her 3rd album ‘Good Luck Songs’ is a must have for every music fan with her 8 own new compositions and a heavenly beautiful version of Tom Waits’ classic song ‘Tom Traubert’s Blues’. Please buy this charming album a.s.a.p. and get instantly convinced.“

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -


week.03

Mojo Monkeys  "Swerve On"  (Medikull Records)

“'Swerve On' might not be the best album around, but it is truly one of the best I have heard in the past year, with some catchy tunes, addictive hooks, and a whole lot of fun, this band know what it is to make good music and have fun, highly recommended....."

- Patrick van Hauwaert / BillyBop -


"Swing, rock, rockabilly, funk and more, it's all on this beautiful album by the Mojo Monkeys, the ideal danceable party album!"

- Lamberts Smits / Keys & Chords -


"The 3 veterans of LA’s roots band Mojo Monkeys have in their lives been intensively soaked with the better roots sound from the American music history, that can be easily heard in the 11 tracks on their 3rd record 'Swerve On' with styles like country, blues and the breathtaking sound from the New Orleans swamp scene."

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -


"Messengers Raven, Watts and Prodaniuk make fun, good time music that draws on soul, blues, rock'n'roll, country, jazz and western swing in equal measure....."

- Mike Davies / Fatea Magazine -


"The Mojo Monkeys music is eclectic, adventurous, soulful, humorous, and also very alive and realistic!"

- Branimir Lokner / Time Machine Music -


"The sound of the week!"

- Benny Sörensen / Musik Fra Kyst Til Kyst -


week.02

Hayward Williams  "Pretenders"  (Why River Records)

Listening to the songs that Hayward Williams is performing on his 7th album ‘Pretenders’ is a very relaxing and meaningful experience, his intimate laid back style of singing and the lo fi sound of all tracks on this record will make you gradually shift into a dreamy world that is full of great music.“

- Valére Sampermans / Rootstime -

"Album of the week!"

- Leo Kattestaart / For The Sake Of The Song -


"The beauty of a delicate and subtile music, both with words and sounds, ghostly and haunting spirit, folk rock meets americana, really, really good....."

- Mike Penard / Radio I.S.A. FM -

 

 

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