Best of What’s New

A selection of newly released music that caught my attention

As a busy week is nearing its end, admittedly, the thought of skipping Best of What’s New this time crossed my mind. But the release of new music doesn’t stop, so the show must go on. I’m also quite happy with my latest findings – quite a bit of rock in different flavors in this installment. Each of these tracks is on albums that appeared yesterday (May 14). Let’s get it to it!

The Steel Woods/Out of the Blue

Kicking things off are The Steel Woods, a band from Nashville, Tenn., blending country, southern rock and blues rock. According to their artist profile on Apple Music, they lay claim to the sound pioneered by Lynyrd Skynyrd. Like Skynyrd, the Steel Woods balance heavy blues-rock with Southern poetry, and they add a bit of plainspoken outlaw country to the mix, as evidenced on their 2017 debut Straw in the Wind. The band was co-founded in 2015 by vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Wes Bayliss and lead guitarist Jason “Rowdy” Cope. Johnny Stanton (bass) and Isaac Senty (drums) completed the line-up. A more recent permanent member is guitarist Tyler Power, who had supported the band during tours. Tragically, Cope passed away in January this year just after The Steel Woods had completed their new album All of Your Stones, due to severe complications from diabetes. Here’s Out of the Blue, which like most other tracks was co-written by Cope. For this tune he teamed up with Aaron Raitiere, a singer-songwriter from Kentucky. There’s definitely a dose of Skynyrd here.

Babe Rainbow/California

Babe Rainbow are a band from Byron Bay, Australia. Formed in 2014, they initially became known for playing ’60s style psychedelic rock. They have also ventured into soft rock with influences from Latin music. Their bassist Lu-Lu-Felix Domingo originally hails from Venezuela. The other members are Angus Dowling (vocals, drums), Jack “Cool-Breeze” Crowther (guitar) and Elliot O’Reilly (guitar). After an eponymous EP from 2015, Babe Rainbow released their first full-length album in 2017, which was also self-titled. California, co-written by Dowling, Crowther and O’Reilly is a nice laid back track from their fourth and new album Changing Colours.

The Black Keys/Crawling Kingsnake

The Black Keys are a rock band from Akron, Ohio, co-founded in 2001 as a duo by high school friends Dan Auerbach (vocals, guitar) and Patrick Carney (drums). After recording a demo and sending it to a dozen of record labels, they got a deal in 2002 with small Los Angeles indie label Alive. Their debut album The Big Come Up, which was recorded in Carney’s basement on an 8-track tape recorder in lo-fi, appeared in March 2002. While it didn’t chart or sell well, the record got them a new deal with Fat Possum Records. Their third album Rubber Factory, issued by that label, was their first to chart in the U.S. on the Billboard 200. Commercial breakthrough came with the sixth studio album Brothers, fueled by the singles Tighten Up and Howlin’ for You. The Black Keys have since released four additional albums including their latest Delta Kream, a cover album of hill country blues songs. Between August 2015 and March 2019, the duo was on hiatus, with Auerbach and Carney each working on their own projects. Here’s Crawling King Snake, the opener of Delta Kream. The tune was first recorded under that title by delta blues artist Big Joe Williams in March 1941. John Lee Hooker, one of the many other artists who recorded Crawling King Snake, turned the song into one of his most successful singles in 1949.

Myles Kennedy/In Stride

Let’s wrap up this installment of Best of What’s New with rock from Myles Kennedy. The singer-songwriter and guitarist is best known as lead vocalist and rhythm guitarist of rock band Alter Bridge, and lead vocalist of Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators, the backing band of Slash. Kennedy has also worked as a session musician and songwriter. In March 2018, he released his solo debut album Year of the Tiger. His new album The Idles of March is his sophomore release. Here’s In Stride, a blues-oriented rocker with nice slide guitar action written by Kennedy.

Sources: Wikipedia; Apple Music; YouTube

16 thoughts on “Best of What’s New”

  1. „Crawling King Snake“ ist ein uralter Klassiker, der zuvor von John Lee Hooker, The Doors vielen anderen gespielt wurde. Ich mag die Version der Black Keys, es ist Blues, nicht weniger, aber auch nicht mehr.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Bis dato hatte ich den Black Keys keine besondere Beachtung geschenkt, und der Name Dan Auerbach war mir primär als Produzent bekannt.

      In der Zwischenzeit habe ich den größten Teil des restlichen Albums angehört. Es sind zwar alles Blues-Coverversionen, doch gefällt mir das ganze gleichwohl – wirklich guter Sound!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Dank Dir fuer den Tip. Bis zu “El Camino” bin ich noch nicht gekommen. 🙂

        Basierend auf den beiden ersten Nummern “Lonely Boy” und “Dead amd Gone” hoert sich das Album vielversprechend an.

        Viele Gruesse aus New Jersey!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. The Steel Wools and The Black Keys… blues in two different forms…both are really good.

    Babe Rainbow’s guitar and sound caught my attention right away. The guitar player has a nice touch.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Max. The Steel Woods and The Black Keys are probably my favorites. In the meantime, I checked additional tunes from each of their albums and like what I heard thus far.

      While I’m familiar with Dan Auerbach’s name, it’s primarily as a producer. I don’t recall having listened to The Black Keys before. I really dig the sound of that album!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. The Black Keys have a retro sound… that is one of the reasons I’ve always liked them.

        Some good new releases!


      1. That’s great! It’s impossible to know everything, so having somebody who has a good idea about your taste is perfect.

        My long-time music buddy from Germany has given me many great tips over the years. Perhaps the best to date was Bonnie Raitt. That was back in the late ’80s with “Nick of Time.” She’s become one of my favorite artists.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Very cool how the music comes our way and the way it hits us. Its also great that we trust certain peoples recommendations. I get a pretty high average on my travels of pages like yours and others.

        Liked by 1 person

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