1. willolux's gentle breakup song "Cedar + Fir" is a sober examination of why things didn't work out and that it's better for both people this way. It's a complex approach that's hard to pull off, and I give the Canadian singer-songwriter props for making it work.
2. Gregory Ackerman's "Walking in Sunlight" has a freewheeling groove that's hard to resist. It's a perfect song for the sultry midsummer heat.
3. Protest music doesn't get much more powerful than Eric Anders' "How Low and Why." Channeling Neil Young, the singer-songwriter's Eleven Nine is a collection of songs that protests the bigotry that Trump has come to represent. All proceeds from the album will go to Lambda Legal, so kill two birds with one stone by buying excellent music and supporting the folks defending my legal rights.
4. Acclaimed acoustic guitarst Terry Robb has channeled his travels into the blues instrumental "Christmas in Istanbul." The song has a cool shuffle that'll help you cool down and get in the mood for the holidays. (Fear not -- it's not Christmasy at all.)
5. DD Allen's "Rebecca's Curse" is a welcome return to traditional rock. It's not the only reason to miss the 90s these days, but it's a good one.
6. I don't speak much Spanish so I can't say I know for sure what it's about, but ZIAN's "Oldivar tu nombre" doesn't need a translation. While you can tell the band is green, the energy is excellent and I'm sure there's great things to come from them.
7. Bason's new single "Grow On" hits that "authenticity" money spot that so many people strive for. I'm really excited to see what's next for him.
8. Son Little hardly needs an introduction. "Blue Magic" sees Son Little stretching into a pop and R&B groove. The guy's got such a sense of dynamism -- he sounds as home in the pop world as he does in blues.
9. I dunno. Sometimes you just need some unabashed Southern rock. D.B. Bryant's "Drive By" makes me want to spend my life savings on a Triumph motorcycle (hell yeah they're sexy and it's what Tasha rode so don't judge me) and roam the open road.
10. Australian duet A Rioting Mind's "Something More" revives that '90s post-grunge magic with strident harmonies and bass lines you can sink your teeth into. This is a band to keep your eye on for sure.
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