Big Wreck (Canada) – Ghost | http://www.bigwreckmusic.com/
I’ve been a Big Wreck fan since their first album in ’97, having seen them open for Dream Theater in Hollywood that year. Ian Thornley is an incredible songwriter and to me it seems that his writing gets exponentially better with each album. I think that “Ghosts” is their best yet.
“Come What May”
Nili Brosh (US) – A Matter of Perception | http://www.nilibrosh.com/
This is Nili’s second solo album and it’s packed with mature and dynamic tunes start to finish. Although there’s an amazing list of personnel on this record, their contributions are not what carries it. Nili’s playing and composition skills stand very strong throughout.
“A Matter of Perception”
Pete Cannon & Dr. Syntax (UK) – Killer Combo! | https://drsyntax.bandcamp.com/
I only seem respond to hip-hop that’s smart and delivered with a sense of humour, and everything I’ve heard from Dr. Syntax definitely fits the bill. “Killer Combo!” is his latest effort with Pete Cannon and it’s tons of fun.
“On My Terms”
Freak Kitchen (Sweden) – Cooking With Pagans | http://www.freakkitchen.com/
I’ve only known about guitarist Mattias Eklundh and his trio Freak Kitchen for a little over two years now. He’s got a truly original sound and never takes himself seriously. As someone who knows their last two albums very well, I think “Cooking With Pagans” is another positive step in the right direction.
Intervals (Canada) – A Voice Within | Bandcamp
I discovered Intervals back when they were doing an all-instrumental thing. Adding vocals on this new, full-length album took their sound to a great place with long term potential. Anup Sastry’s drumming on this album is fantastic.
Navene K (US) – Warrior / Secret Police | Mind | Bandcamp
I first heard Navene Koperweis on Animals As Leaders‘ second album. He has since moved on and is doing this solo drum & bass, live electronic thing that’s definitely worth supporting.
Chris Letchford (US) – Lightbox | http://chrisletchford.com/
Chris is one of the guitarists in Scale The Summit and a music educator and writer. “Lightbox” is a unique approach to jazz that’s quite the departure from the StS sound.
Anika Nilles (Germany) – EP | Chary Life | http://www.anikanilles.com/
Anika is killer drummer with great feel and a perfect ear for when chops are called for and when they’re not. Her playing is exciting and at the same time reserved and thoughtful. This EP and single are what I hope to be a prelude to larger projects in the near future.
Winger (US) – Better Days Comin’ | http://www.wingertheband.com/
I’ve always respected Winger and enjoyed everything they’ve released. Kip has put together yet another really strong collection of tunes and I’m thrilled that the band is still going strong.