Owl City – Ocean Eyes & Lights – The Listening
I know they really aren’t new artists…just new to me and a whole lot of other listeners. With Owl City & Lights you have a couple of kids making music in their bedrooms with keyboards and computers. Fireflies was the surprise hit single of the year and Saviour may just be just as catchy.
And Then There Were None – Who Speaks For Planet Earth
When 2009 opened we thought And Then There Were None would be the electronic band everyone would be talking about. (but then along came Owl City & Lights) None the less this was a strong debut featuring some stellar songs.
If Delirious had come from Texas instead of the UK and been influenced by The Killers instead of U2 or Radiohead then they might have been Abandon. With a successful slot opening for This Beautiful Republic they impressed with their live show and CHR made Hold On a breakout song.
Molly Jensen – Maybe Tomorrow
There was something about this album that set it apart from most acoustic pop albums. Give it Time should have been a hit single and the video for Wait For You Here saw her director Barak Hardley playfully antagonizing her.
Fiction Family – S/T
Jon Foreman (Switchfoot) and Sean Watkins (Nickle Creek ) collaborate on this project that is closer musically to Sean’s band than Jon’s band. Standout tracks were When She’s Near (also a video) and Look For Me Baby.
Cotton Jones – Paranoid Cocoon
Michael Nau and Whitney McGraw (Page France & The Broadway Hush) released an album under the name Cotton Jone basket Ride in late 2008. Now trimming the name to Cotton Jones for 2009’s Paranoid Cocoon. Blood Red Sentimental Blues and Gotta Cheer Up offer up some off-kilter alternative folk to tap your foot to.
Jonathan Steingard – NineteenEightyThree EP
Hawk Nelson guitartist Jonathan Steingard released The Atlantis EP and Under the Canopy in late 2008. 2009’s NineteenEightyThree EP (was available free on his website) featured remixes and a killer song Kamikaze (Subharmonic Economic) that features an extended jam that you have to hear to believe.