1. SPACE GHOST COWBOYS
This is a little sneaky; Matt didn't mention these guys because their singer is away and they won't be playing shows for a while, but as far as I'm concerned, they could run off pure momentum for up to at least next semester. I remember the first time I saw Aaron Maine play some solo songs at an open mic at The Stood and it made me so happy to hear everyone singing along to all the songs. I was pretty hooked at that point but it was nothing compared to when I saw Aaron play with the addition of the Reilly brothers on drums and bass. This three piece has definitely fixed its place as my favorite band on campus and my life seems emptier knowing they wont be playing shows in the near future. Check out their MYSPACE to hear songs from a new upcoming album.
2. KYLE GILBRIDE
Lots of my favorite campus music is in the form of our quiet singer/songwriters. Being in the music department I get to see and hear some really great songs before they hit the stage and I'm very thankful for that. One singer in particular is Kyle Gilbride, who plays in a quiet, almost atmospheric style that can take up a whole room in emotion and feeling. By the time Kyle stops playing (which is sometimes painfully close to when he starts) its like everyone has been hit by this big wave of sound that comes in such a small, simple package. I definitely implore anyone reading this to listen to see Kyle play at their first chance, or to at least listen to some songs on his MYSPACE. I'm pretty sure Kyle is also coming out with an album soon.
3. MELISSA AHERN
Melissa is a good friend of mine who spent last semester in the music department. She writes beautiful songs that mix styles of quiet, acoustic snapshots with classic jazz standards. Her live show definitely holds the same sort of atmospheric properties of Kyle's, often adding a tasteful upright bass or jazz style drums. Definitely check out her MYSPACE and keep an eye out for any new recordings.
4. ADAM MCHEFFEY
Adam's an awesome guy and he makes awesome music. He once covered one of my songs live and since then I can always hear him singing when I play it and it makes me so happy. Just before spring break Adam released with his new full-length, Let's Kick Fire. I haven't heard any tracks from it yet but I'm sure its all great. Not only should you ask Adam for one of his new CDs but you should ALSO go see him perform THIS THURSDAY, March 26th, at the Stood with Choral Pleasure and Jesse Cooper Levy. Check out some songs on Adam's MYSPACE.
Olken has by far undergone the biggest transformation since the beginning of this year. This group started early this year with a singer/guitarist and an accordion player frequenting the Stood open mics. Since then they have seen the addition of electric cello, bass and drums, creating a much fuller, more complete sound. I think these guys have a sound that combines early Murder By Death with The Arcade Fire. Like everyone else on this list, I'm pretty sure Olken is working on a CD right now, but until then, be sure to check out their MYSPACE.
So there's my top five, honorable mentions will be up soon!