Yes, it's been way too long. As someone on my Facebook said, it's as if the Ghost has become a ghost. And I did. For many reasons, my attention was shifted away from local music. Plus, promoting local music can be a grueling and often thankless task, so perhaps a temporary step back was a much needed thing. But now seems to be the right time to start slowly easing back into my job as local music advocate. I hope to start bringing you, the local music fans, more updates on a regular basis.
But for now, let's keep it simple and start with a playlist. Consider this a Cliff Notes version of what I should have been sharing with you over the past few months but haven't. Hope these sounds bring joy to your eardrums.
Standard playlist disclaimer: any artists, record labels, etc. who do not wish to be on the playlist for any reason whatsoever, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will gladly remove the track.
- "Like Waking Up From the Longest Dream", Dustin Cavazos
It's taken me more than a little while to get into Mr. Cavazos' music, but his newest effort In and Out of Sleep is a gorgeous and thought provoking album that is one of the more unique local albums in recent memory. This is also the type of album that I suspect will grow on me more with continued listens. An early contender for a Top 10 album of the year.
- "Bonnie & Clyde", Goodnight Ned
Played the earlier recording of this quite a bit on my Deep Ellum Radio show and liked it. But this new recording brings new life and energy into this already excellent track. Catch them Saturday at The Magnolia Motor Lounge with Foxtrot Uniform (more on that band later).
- "Plug-N-Play", Sunward
I haven't heard much from the band since their CD release for A Magical Display of Lights and Rays (which also brought about the awesome reunions of Chemistry Set and Tabula Rasa). It's a really catchy collection of quirky indie pop songs, and I'd welcome more performances on behalf of this band.
- "Rocket", Home by Hovercraft
The song sounds really good on CD, but it pales in comparison to their energetic and tight live performances. There's a similar energy to The Happy Bullets onstage, but with even better songs than the already impressive Bullets. Can't wait to see what the band can do for their CD release of Are We Chameleons? March 2nd at Dada.
- "Drunk Love", Snow tha Product
When I look back at last year's Dallas Observer Music Awards Showcase, the performance that will be remembered the most by me is that of Snow tha Product. Although her set of about 20 minutes was way shorter than I would have liked, in those 20 minutes she bowled me over with her excellent beats and razor sharp skills in terms of both flow and lyrics. I predict this will be a huge year for Snow, so I would encourage everyone to take note of her music, or as she would say, get "Woke Up".
- "Arise", Sol Tax
If my memory serves correct, I saw Sol Tax's lead singer, Sydney Wright, perform solo about six years ago at Opening Bell Coffee. As I recall, I was quite impressed by her singing ability and songwriting skills, but didn't get the opportunity to get to know her music better since she soon thereafter moved away. Now Ms. Wright is back with a new band, which will perform this Saturday at Hailey's along with GOBL favorites The Virgin Wolves.
- "Animal", Air Review
Probably my favorite track off the band's second full length, Low Wishes.
- "Black Licorice", Daniel Hart
Mark of the Local Edge ranked Mr. Hart's "O Sangeeta" as his favorite local music jam of 2012. Although I chose a different favorite track for 2012 (revealed later), I must disagree with Mark as to Mr. Hart's best track. "Black Licorice" is his strongest track as far as I'm concerned, although some of the lyrics could present a problem being played uncensored on the air.
- "Cold Hands", Somebody's Darling
Although I liked the bands self titled debut full length album, I missed the more bluesy influences that the band possessed earlier in their career. So I'm quite happy to say that the blues influence can be found throughout their second album, Jank City Shakedown, and particularly in the album's strong opening track, "Cold Hands". Nice work, guys.
- "Edge of the World", Foxtrot Uniform
This band seemed to come out of nowhere to enjoy a large amount of critical success and even airplay on KXT. Songs like "Edge of the World", with its laid back groove, clearly demonstrate the band's appeal. As mentioned earlier, they'll be at Magnolia Motor Company Saturday with Goodnight Ned. Quite a nice lineup for those needing a good Fort Worth show.
- "Oh, Warden", The Hanna Barbarians
Speaking of good FW shows, The Hanna Barbarians open for Jonathan Tyler & Northern Lights Friday night at the Live Oak.
- "With Love", Ronnie Fauss
My congratulations go out to Mr. Fauss. He's finally getting some well deserved attention since being singed to New West Records imprint Normaltown Records. His debut for the label, I Am the Man You Know I'm Not, shows off his songwriting skill, and this track here, the album's closer, is a gorgeous heartbreaker. Check him out live Friday at Sundown at Granada.
- "The Road", Dovetail
The song starts slow yet lovely and captivating, and by the end turns into an almost epic style conclusion. Throw in some lyrics that appeal equally to the head and heart ("Lend me a moment/Something that pain cannot erase"), and a gorgeous blend of southern rock with modern elements, what does that leave you with? The best local song of 2012, hands down. That's what.