The charismatic and charming Erin McKeown first came to XPN listeners’ attention five years ago with her debut album, Distillation, a collection of quirky, folksy songs infused by her passion for jazz and blues. Since then, McKeown has greatly matured and on her new album she continues to create a singular sound unbound by genre restrictions.
John Hiatt is a consummate singer-songwriter who has long been a core artist on XPN. On Master Of Disaster Hiatt teams with legendary Memphis producer Jim Dickinson and his sons Luther and Cody of the North Mississippi All Stars and bassist David Hood who for years played with the Muscle Shoals studio collective.
One of the highlights of this year's All About The Music Festival will be Mike Doughty's Band. Mike and his band perform on Saturday July 23. This week, XPN will go deep in to his new record to showcase the many sides of an incredibly talented artist.
Vocalist Lizz Wright was introduced to XPN listeners in 2003 when she released her debut album, Salt. With an eclectic mix of traditional jazz, R&B and soul/folk, Wright’s sultry vocals and warm, organic songs quickly won fans around the world with Salt's release and Lizz’s dazzling live performances. Salt was an XPN Featured Album of the week in June of '03, and came in at no. 21 in the Top 50 Countdown that same year.
Many curious music fans want to know: Can Coldplay do it again? Can they follow-up their masterful 2002 release with a collection of songs as good as, if not better than A Rush Of Blood To The Head? The answer is yes - X&Y has many of the musical Coldplay-isms in place to make this their best record yet.
Ever since jazz guitarist John Scofield was a kid, the music of Ray Charles had a significant influence on him. So when Verve Records’ President Ron Goldstone approached Scofield with the idea of doing a tribute album to Charles, Scofield was game.
The Austin, Texas based originated in 1994 and released their first full length album in '96 on the indie label, Matador Records. Following an ill-timed move to a major label in 1998 the band left Elektra Records and returned to Merge Records, another vital indie-rock label which Spoon has called their home since.
Is the former Led Zep front man still vital after all these years? You bet. With his band The Strange Sensation (including musicians who have performed and collaborated with Massive Attack, Portishead, Jah Wobble and Roni Size), Plant has delivered the best of his now eight solo album catalogue.
Cold Roses, the new double album from Ryan Adams, is probably very much the record that his hardcore fans have been waiting for him to make since his days with Whiskeytown. But since his 2000 collection of rustic Dylan-esque songs on Heartbreaker, alt-country rocker Ryan Adams made a nod towards his love for Morrissey and Brit-rock on 2003’s Rock N Roll and was followed by the dark double Love Is Hell (Parts 1 and 2). Now he returns with the 18 song Cold Roses. Writing for amazon.com, music critic Don McLeese sums up Roses succinctly: “This double-disc gem delineates the possibilities of alt-country in 2005 while transcending the limitations typically associated with the genre.”