Portland, Ore. folk-rock troupe Blitzen Trapper have been exploring the boundaries and possibilities of Americana for over a decade now, releasing a half-dozen full-lengths and winning the hearts of the national indie scene along the way.
"Signs and Signifiers," the debut record from bluesy, rockabilly artist JD McPherson, was rereleased by Rounder Records earlier this year. The wider release gives music fans a second chance to discover a quickly rising talent in McPherson.
When people hear John Mark Nelson's music for the first time, the sense of disbelief is usually evident. With arrangements that recall songwriters who have been in the business for decades, the 18-year old - and recently graduated - Minnetonka High student is turning heads for the mature compositions he's been recording since the age of 14.
The New York City-based quintet the Walkmen have cemented their status as one of indie rock's most accomplished and talented acts in the ten years since they released their debut album. Their jagged, post-punk influenced sound has steadily mellowed and expanded, and singer Hamilton Leithauser's songwriting has matured as well.
Don't believe the critics of the world: Delta Spirit is not an Americana band. They may not know how to describe their music yet, but the five-piece out of California aren't going to let anyone box them into one genre.
Old-friend Brandi Carlile is a prolific folk rock artist, having released her third album of the past four years. Her newest, Bear Creek, was recently our CD of the Week.
While in town to kick off her tour at the Minnesota Zoo, she returned to The Current Studio to perform a few songs from Bear Creek and chat with Jill about her rainy zoo performance, the inspiration behind the new record and her long-held goal of wearing a "nudie suit."
One of the most successful break-out bands for Minnesota in the past decade and a half, Motion City Soundtrack popularized the pop punk sound in the late '90s. They struck a chord in a young demographic that quickly started a MCS bonanza with high-profile live shows and a string of successful records which have already sold a combined half a million copies.
When Metric made their debut on the United States music circuit with the single "Combat Baby" in 2004, the band probably didn't know how ravenously they'd be greeted. Now they've become one of the biggest musical exports out of Canada, and they're primed to become an international hit.
Hollow Boys' new mini-LP, "When You Think of Us, Pray For Us," has a happenstance title. The message was inside a card that fell out of one of Ali's records, and it solidifies the natural manner in which this band has come together.