Author Archives: Robert Fontenot

Carsie Blanton, Not Old, Not New (So Ferocious)

Sex sells in almost any form of popular music, but it’s a rare bird who can create a truly sensual atmosphere that works as more than just marketing strategy. Carsie Blanton does just that with Not Old, Not New. Other than the 45-second coda she wrote herself, the whole album consists of nothing but jazz covers [...]

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Royal Southern Brotherhood, heartsoulblood (Ruf Records)

After a fine, but ultimately stop-gap, live album, here’s this rock-soul supergroup’s first true follow-up to their debut. The exciting news is that the five-piece’s personalities have already congealed—it can only be a good sign when the seams between this much Americana disappear. It’s already hard to tell where Cyril Neville ends and Mike Zito [...]

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Nikka B., Poison Girl, Inc. (Upper Ninth)

“Nikka,” like “nukka,” holds a special place in the vernacular of the streets. But Nikka B., who hails from Oakland, grew up smack in the middle of the 13th Ward, and made her name in Mid-City, makes sure to let you know that’s pronounced with a long e on her debut mixtape. That mix of [...]

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Sundog, Space Criminal (Community Records)

Pop music is a creature that thrives on gimmicks and enigmas, and that bodes well for Sundog’s future outside the Crescent City. He’s definitely NOLA’s greatest anonymous live looper with an astronaut suit and a ukulele, mixing Postal Service- and MGMT-style electro-indie with his own post-Sublime white-boy-soul, singer-songwriter mentality. For those of you not in [...]

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The Quintessential Octopus, Mother (Independent)

Don’t look now, but there’s a whole indie-pop scene mushrooming—sometimes literally out of the bedrooms of New Orleans, but, more often than not, from the minds of transplants who came here as part of the post-K boho diaspora. David Sigler and Joe Ceponis, for example, met in Montgomery, Alabama and made their way southwest, musical [...]

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Fo’ Reel, Heavy Water (Independent)

Calling themselves a New Orleans “supergroup” may be a bit of a misnomer: Fo’ Reel’s four main members are veterans of the local music scene, session-men mostly, with Dr. John and Nevilles and Allmans credits under their belts, and singer C.P. Love cut a side with Malaco during their “Groove Me/Mr. Big Stuff” salad days, [...]

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Misled, Injection (Independent)

This trio dropped a punk-rock debut on the local scene about a decade ago, then stepped back and translated their ethos into folk-rock around 2010 as Chris Rico and the Fill-Ins. Now they’re back to their old alter ago and Chris’s songs have survived the devolution without incident on their new EP, Injection. However, that [...]

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Ben E. Hunter, The Nature of Things (Independent)

Acoustic albums, even reggae ones, don’t usually open with a swell of fake horns, strings and female vocals that make you think some vintage James Bond movie is coming on—but, then again, that’s Ben E. Hunter’s statement of purpose. He may paint his portraits with a few simple tools but his emotional canvas is large [...]

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Judith Owen, Ebb & Flow (Twanky Records)

Of all the contenders to the Joni Mitchell throne, a club that seems to grow rather than diminish with the passage of time, Judith Owen now seems to have a better shot than most, if only because this Welsh-English expat (and wife of Harry Shearer) had the good sense, with her eighth album, to reconvene [...]

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Kenny “Blues Boss” Wayne, Rollin’ with the Blues Boss (Stony Plain)

It’s almost impossible to make the blues sound fresh after a century. Kenny “Blues Boss” Wayne rocks those same old one-four-five, AABA verses with no real change in lyrical content, and as he’s savvy enough to note in his own PR, he’s not the least bit reluctant to carry the flag: “They say what I’m [...]

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