Do you ever get overwhelmed by the sheer volume of great music being made and shared? We certainly do. Sometimes it’s hard even to know where to begin. So, as both a practice for ourselves on staff at the Rabbit Room and a tool to help you with your own listening life, we are beginning a monthly blog series called “New Music Roundup.”
These blog posts will be designed for simplicity and ease—the idea is to give you a sampling of the new music we’re paying attention to this month so that you can find what interests you and start listening. Let’s begin.
Early Work, Vol. 2 by Josh Garrels
Josh Garrels is taking a much-deserved sabbatical from putting out new music this year, but before he does that, he’s…putting out just a little more new music. I can’t say I’m not grateful! And it’s a cool idea, too—re-tracking some of his oldies-but-goodies (such as the truth-bomb of a song in the video above) and breathing new life into them. It’s a great idea for a project, and excellently executed. Thanks for your generosity, Josh. Now get some rest!
Live Vol. 1 by Colony House
Someone asked me what I loved about Colony House. Besides the fact that the guys are amazing human beings, I think the first word that comes to mind is “passion.” When you see them play live, it’s astonishing how much heart they put into every note of every performance. Not only are the songs intricate musically, the guys are good enough to pull off these songs on stage—with the added benefit of their fiery hearts on full display. I dare you to not move when you hear this.
I Dream of You (Vol. 3) by JJ Heller
JJ Heller is back with another volume of cover songs in I Dream of You Vol. 3—which also means that, strangely, two covers of the Proclaimers’ “I’m Gonna Be (500 miles)” are coming down the pipeline (you’ll hear the next one in next month’s roundup). JJ and Dave never fail to deliver quality work and this new album is no exception.
The Wood Drake Sessions
Paul Ranheim and Kirk Sauers became friends during their time living in Nashville. Paul is a minister and songwriter in Colorado, with a particular heart for resourcing the church’s worship and cultivating her leaders. Kirk is a worship leader in Georgia, with a passion to shepherd the diverse and beautiful body of Christ through music. In the midst of the disappointment and divisiveness of a long and challenging year they see a light piercing through the shadows, and hope to bring the worshiping bride of Christ together as one to sing with a renewed hope. They have sought to compose songs filled with ancient truths which invite the human heart to respond in the present. You can learn more about their collaboration, The Wood Drake Sessions, here.
Becca Jordan: New Album (Kickstarter)
Becca is one of my favorite songwriters: subtle, truthful, and hopeful. When I learned she was teaming up with Jess Ray to make her new record, I was giddy with excitement (still am, truly). And then when I heard this first song they made together, “Autumn Gold,” my expectations were far exceeded. I dare say this album is going to be immaculate, and there are still a few more days left for you to get in on the Kickstarter. Give this song a listen and just ponder the goodness that is to come!
One of the advantages of having a son who’s a record producer is that you get to hear music a wee bit early. Folks, I put on this new Morgan Brock EP (a precursor to a full-length coming soon), and loved it immediately. The production is sparse, leaving room for her gorgeous voice to fill the space. The songs are tender and intimate, which is a perfect counterpoint to the surprising melodies.
Breezewood by Zane Vickery
Zane Vickery came out of nowhere this month with a record that gets better with every single listen and rings all my bells. If this is what his first record is like, I can’t wait to hear what’s next.
Kenny & Claire: New Album (Kickstarter)
Kenny and Claire Hilliard are a husband and wife musical duo based in Nashville. They write worship songs and rewrite hymns in a folk/Americana style with the goal of encouraging the church with truth from God’s Word. A few years ago they discovered that Kenny had a tumor on his brain stem. Their approach to finding comfort in music anchored in the scriptures was forged in the midst of this intense season of suffering. It was during that timeframe that they sensed a growing desire to write music to encourage the church with truth from God’s Word. You can learn more about their project Are You Weary? and listen to some samples via their Kickstarter page.