Get it or forget it – Emma Cairo, Steve Azar & The Kings Men, Life Lessons, Jordana Talsky

It’s the last day of summer, and winter is knocking at our door here in Montana.  There is snow on the mountaintops and the night time is already getting cold.  Seems like the perfect time for another edition of Get it or Forget it.  We have four artists for you today, two of which are new to us, and one of which was a country legend.  We hope you enjoy these reviews and will heed our advice when it comes to great music to check out.  Let’s get started.

Artist Name:  Emma Cairo 

Album Name:   In East & West

Label:   North South Sounds

Genre:   Pop/Rock

Track Listing:  1.  In it for the Money; 2.  Stalker; 3.  L.A.; 4.  Muse; 5.  Dirty Dishes; 6.  Colors of the Forest; 7.  Britney Wannabe; 8.  Sandstorm; 9.  Be With Me; 10.  I Don’t Understand; 11.  Monique Says; 12.  Intuition; 13.  Who am I

Publicist:   None

Review:  Emma Cairo hits the ground running on the first track of her new CD, In East & West, and never lets up, as she, very tongue-in-cheek, lets us know she’s “In it for the Money.”  Cairo mixes her Nordic heritage into her indie pop/rock sound to create her own unique musical manna.  We love the piano on the second track, “Stalker,” and the semi-serious conversation within the lyrics between a stalker and his victim.  The third track features an homage to her adopted home of Los Angeles, and also resulted in her first music video for this album.  Suffice it to say that every track of her latest project is worthy of attention, and should help her be able to “stay in L.A.”  Although the album was released in March, Cairo has only recently begun to promote the album due to a myriad of personal reasons.  Regardless of the delay, we are thankful to be able to add this album to our musical library.  Our favorite tracks include “In it for the Money,” “L.A..,” “Muse,” “Colors of the Forest,” “Britney Wannabe,” and “Sandstorm.”

Recommendation:  Get it now and support this amazing transplant.  We are so glad you decided to stay.

Artist Name:  Steve Azar & The Kings Men

Album Name:  Down at the Liquor Store

Label:  Ride Records

Genre:  Delta Soul

Track Listing:  1.  Rena Lara; 2.  Start to Wanderin’ my Way; 3.  Tender and Tough; 4.  Wake me From the Dead; 5.  Down at the Liquor Store; 6.  She Just Rolls With Me; 7.  I Don’t Mind (Most of the Time); 8.  Chance I’ll Take; 9.  Over it All; 10.  The Road Isn’t There Anymore; 11.  The Crossroads; 12.  Ode to Sonny Boy; 13.  Greenville

Publicist:  Play it Loud Music

Review:  Most of you will remember Steve Azar’s huge hit back in 2001, “I Don’t Have to be me til Monday,” but you’ve never heard him like this.  He has returned to his Mississippi roots and added The Kings Men, a group of musicians that have backed such legends as B.B. King, Bobby Bland, Little Milton, Albert King and others.  The result of this musical union is Azar’s first album in five years, and the first album ever recorded at Club Ebony, now part of the B.B. King Museum.  Azar combines elements of blues, country, Americana and R&B to create what he dubs “Delta Soul.”  It is an amazing combination which should return Azar to the lofty heights he once inhabited.  It is packed with hit songs from start to finish, and is the perfect Saturday night party album.  We especially love the horns and the vibe of “Wake me From the Dead,” as well as the genuine down-home goodness of “Rena Lara.”  Other notable tracks include “I Don’t Mind (Most of the Time),” “Chance I’ll Take,” “Over it All,” “The Road Isn’t There Anymore,” and “Greenville,” his homage to his hometown.

Recommendation:  This is the album to Get.  We guarantee there will be no regrets.

Artist Name:  Life Lessons

Album Name:  Best When in Motion

Label:    Triple Crown Records

Genre:  Indie Rock

Track Listing:  1.  Control; 2.  Attention to Detail; 3.  Collapse; 4.  Without Looking Back; 5.  Bury It

Publicist:  Earshot Media

Review:  And now for something completely different, we turn to Life Lessons, aka the boys of Oklahoma.  With elements of punk added to blistering guitar riffs and a pounding beat, they strive to be our go to band for rock nirvana.   Their music will get your head to banging while your toes are a tapping.  They definitely have a radio friendly sound, with thoughtful lyrics for the intellectually inclined.  The only drawback is that just when the beat and the rocky groove have taken root, this five-song EP is over.  Thankfully, we can put it on repeat and listen again.  We look forward to hearing more from these future rock superstars.

Recommendation:  If hard rock with a strong drumbeat is your cup of tea, then this is a must have for your collection.  Get it now before they become so well known that you won’t be able to find it.

Artist Name:  Jordana Talsky

Album Name:  Neither of Either

Label:  Self-released

Genre:  Pop

Track Listing:  1.  Run; 2.  Around you all the Time; 3.  Ways; 4.  Sick; 5.  Bitter Sweet Heart; 6.  Spark; 7.  Wave of Emotion; 8.  Neither of Either; 9.  Don’t Know; 10.  You Oughta Know; 11.  You Oughta Know (clean version)

Publicist:  Last Tango Productions

Review:   Jordana Talsky is a voice to be reckoned with and a sound reminiscent of Enya meets Dido, with a healthy dose of Marina V.   Her music has a jazzy vibe that works well with the lilting quality of Talsky’s voice.  In addition, her scatting abilities remind me of Ella Fitzgerald.  Her background of opera and musical theater adds to the dynamic nature of her sound, making her music go down easy like fine wine.  She could easily become your “go-to” sound for your weekly (or daily) chill time.  It may be cliche’ but Talsky is definitely one of those voices who can sell albums by just singing the phone book.  Her voice will take you on a magical aural journey that will leave you with a peaceful, easy feeling.  Just put this one on repeat, relax and enjoy.  Our favorites include “Run,” “Around you all the Time,” “Bitter Sweet Heart,” “Spark,” and her brilliant cover and arrangement of Alanis Morissette’s masterpiece, “You Oughta Know.”

Recommendation:  Definitely Get this one – it will make chill time easier to attain.