August 12, 2013

Stefan Weiner - Potluck

If You Like: Town Hall, Gregory Alan Isakov, Blind Pilot

If you're an avid reader of this blog, you may recognize the name and face of Stefan Weiner. Not so long ago (and hopefully still!), he fronted the New York folk group Town Hall, making some of the cutest, most soothing folk music around. Weiner's voice was always one of the best things about the group; it is easy to like, yet not ordinary enough to pass by unnoticed. 

Now, with his new solo EP, Potluck, Weiner expands upon his sound, collaborates with some old and new friends, and has created one of the most interesting folk releases of 2013. While some of the tracks like "Fearful Lullaby" and "Say I'm Strong (feat. Phoeby Ryan)" sound at first like classic Town Hall, he grows these songs far beyond what the trio has ever done. A veritable orchestra helps back him up on many of the songs, resulting in a huge sound, the whole time led by fearless captain Weiner.

"Frozen Ground" was the biggest surprise for me. This song is the closest thing to a lively pop song that he has done so far, and it works so so well. If there is one song on this EP that will get him noticed, it is this one. It is catchy, charming, interesting, and just about anything anyone could want from a pop track. Strings weave in and out as his voice is taken to its limits. He rarely sings this loud, but that doesn't mean he can't. The rest of the tracks show his astounding diversity. Hints of jazz, blues, soul, and classical pop up all over the place and make you sure that this guy will not be pigeonholed. 

The album has just been released on Bandcamp, so grab yourself a copy and listen below!

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