Roundin’ Up The Raves: Blackberry Smoke, Elle King, J.D. McPherson, Tobias Jesso, Jr.

I’m not a neophobist. Listening to new-fangled music doesn’t send me screaming for the hills, hands clapped tightly over my ears to stopper the sound, thereby necessitating a 12-hour binge of Cat Stevens to soothe my jangled nerves. The cutting edge doth not make me bleed. But I do have a comfort zone. And it mostly resides in the stretch between 1964 and 1974. So if a modern artist wants to step out of the mainstream current of “cool” and bathe in older-fashioned waters, who am I to argue? I say, “Huzzah!” Shout it out loud with me. “Huzzah!” Let’s round ’em up.

coverBlackberry Smoke – Holding All The Roses

Like a real life Almost Famous, a hard-working band makes good. Beautifully polished Southern Rock in the fine tradition of Skynyrd, Ozark Mountain Daredevils, and The Black Crowes. Perfect for every occasion from noon to night, from lazing on a pontoon to dancing under the neon lights.

Put them on the cover of the Rolling Stone, Jann!

coverElle King – Love Stuff

Like Pink if she was best friends with Jack White. Elle is a hard-drinking, hard-living, heart-breaking lady, and she’s not afraid to sing about it.

She’s probably the one your mother warned you about. All the more reason to spend some time raisin’ hell with Elle.

coverJ.D. McPherson – Let The Good Times Roll

McPherson built his reputation by going back–way back–and reinterpreting the original rock ‘n’ roll sound for a new generation. And on this, his latest album, he consolidates power, delivering a lean, mean set for movin’ and groovin’.

Get mauled by the good times!

coverTobias Jesso Jr. — Goon

Here’s a list of some of the musicians living in Los Angeles in 1974: Leon Russell, John Lennon, Dennis Wilson from the Beach Boys, Harry Nilsson, Graham Nash. If you were to stumble upon these guys, late one night in the studio, in their cups and singing sad songs to one another around a beat up, old piano, the ensuing recordings might not sound entirely unlike this fine collection by Tobias Jesso Jr.

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