The Dead Weather / Horehound / Third Man Records
Despite the bland opinions and perspectives of professional critics that circle fresh music projects, Horehound is a complex, dark and nostalgic piece of art. The sound uttered through the 11 tracks may be foreign to the average ear, but it’s enticing. Singer Alison Mosshart’s growls and drummer Jack White’s sharp snare shots not only twist several of our senses but they also act as the album’s foundation. The only harsh piece of reality is after a few listens, the sound can turn into an irritating noise that bleeds dry. Horehound isn’t a record that’s a mirror image of The Kills or The White Stripes. Instead, it’s an album that will stand the music demons of time and provoke a listener to travel into the dark and dusty realms of alternative rock.
Download: “Hang You From The Heavens”, “60 Feet Tall”
Demi Lovato / Here We Go Again / Hollywood Records
Is it wrong to criticize the emotional and musical outburst every new-age Mickey Mouse club poser creates? Maybe. Unlike her Disney counterparts, Demi Lovato has shown signs of maturity and potential with Here We Go Again. Although the music is ultimately projected to stereotypical pre-teens, Lovato’s vocals and lyrics aren’t entirely wrapped in fluorescent pink bubblegum. With help from John Mayer and William Beckett (The Academy Is), tracks like “Quiet” and “Remember December” cross the innocent adolescent line. The best example may be the album’s stand-out number “Catch Me”, where the singer quietly and sincerely confesses how she’s terrified of having her heart shattered. Such emotional topics don’t belong under the Disney brand and its sunshine orchestra because they make almost any kind of music seem like another pop album. The only way Lovato will be taken seriously as an artist is if she comes out of the Hollywood spotlight and embraces the edgier side of music.
Download: “Catch Me”
Brian Bonz & The Dot Hongs / From Sumi To Japan / Triple Crown Records
It’s been a while since civilization’s ears have heard a new and creative songwriter like Conor Oberst or Ben Kweller, but that’s about to change with Brian Bonz. From Sumi To Japan may not captivate the minds of mainstream music fans, but it’s an exotic record that deserves to be paid attention. Full of entrancing sounds similar to Fleet Foxes and Broken Social Scene, the record will not waste the time of indie music addicts. Songs like “Judy & The Alpha Queen” and “Christie McCauliffe’s Cacophony (Reprise)” will put listeners into an unexpected form of enchantment that persuades one to drift and dance. Grown from psychedelic seeds, From Sumi To Japan is a forest full of genre-loving musicians who only know sounds and not the outside world.
Download: “Christie McCauliffe’s Cacophony (Reprise)”, “Seafence”