New Music Releases: Week of October 14, 2014

By: Jacob Elyachar,

This week’s New Music Releases features Top 40 superstars, two Voice alums, two Broadway stars and one impeccable rising soul man!


Sweet Talker Jessie J album

Jessie J is back! The English singer-songwriter’s “Sweet Talker” showcases a diverse group of hits! (Album cover property of Lava Records & Republic Records)

Sweet Talker by Jessie J

The last time Jessie J released a full-length studio album stateside was her debut album in 2011. Three years later, the former Voice UK coach and Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter released her third album that merges several music genres together: pop, Hip-hop, EDM and soul! Jessie’s signature vocals continue to shine as several A-listers including Ariana Grande, Diplo, Lindsey Stirling, Max Martin and Nicki Minaj provided either vocal, lyrical or production support. I am so glad that Jessie is back! A

Tracks to Download: “Burnin’ Up,” “Bang Bang,” “Fire,” “Masterpiece” & “Loud”

Holiday Wishes by Idina Menzel

We are two months until Christmas and Tony-winning actress Idina Menzel is hoping to get everyone in the holiday mood. Princess Elsa’s voice actress breathed new life into some of Christmas classics such as “The Christmas Song” and “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” and will surprise listeners to her brilliant cover of Mariah Carey’s iconic Christmas tune. Also, keep an ear out for Ms. Menzel’s duet with Michael Buble on “Baby It’s Cold Outside.” They had impeccable vocal chemistry. A-

Tracks to Download: “The Christmas Song,” “Do You Hear What I Hear,” “Baby It’s Cold Outside” & “All I Want for Christmas Is You”


Anything Goes Florida Georgia Line

“Anything Goes” showcases Tyler Hubbard & Brian Kelley’s growth as singer-songwriters. (Album cover property of Republic Nashville Records)

Anything Goes by Florida Georgia Line

America’s favorite country duo (Tyler Hubbard & Brian Kelley) is back with their sophomore album. Anything Goes showcases a lot of toe-tapping tunes that would make country fans scream with delight. Hubbard and Kelley prove to their fans, music lovers and critics that they are evolving as Nashville songwriters, while they received assistance from Chris Tompkins, Rodney Clawson and Craig Wiseman. This is probably one of their best albums and I expect a lot of CMAs (and Grammy) nominations in the future. B+

Tracks to Download: “Sun Daze,” “Dirt,” “Smile” & “Smoke”

The Swon Brothers by The Swon Brothers

While there is no doubt that Colton and Zack Swon have a future in country music, I felt a little bit disconnected with their debut record. Both “Later On” and “What I’m Thinking About” are perky up-lifters and “Pray for You” is a meaningful country rock ballad, I was bored with the rest of the album. I hope that when the guys go back into the studio to record the sophomore album, they use the formulas of the three tracks I mentioned and hits from their Voice days. C

Tracks to Download: “Later On,” “What I’m Thinking About” & “Pray For You”


Kim Yarbrough Family Tree

Kim Yarbrough shined with her latest single: “Family Tree!” (Photo property of Kim Yarbrough)

Family Tree” by Kim Yarbrough

Kim Yarbrough is one of my favorite artists to have ever appeared on The Voice! While she has continued to soar in the acting world with appearances on The Haunted Hathaways, Hot in Cleveland and Jane the Virgin, Kim will be making her return to the music world later this season. Her first single, “Family Tree,” is a beautiful soul-funk track that showcases Kim’s superb lower part of her vocal register and will leave listeners thinking about their family tree! Congratulations, Kim! “Family Tree” is my Song of the Week! A+

When I Found You” by Francesco Yates

One name that has been on my radar is Francesco Yates! The Toronto pop/soul man unleashed his second single: “When I Found You.” This song would remind listeners of 2000s Usher and Justin Timberlake. His vocals were flawless and haunting and I think he is about to join mainstream very soon. A

Boomerang” by Rachel Potter feat. Joey Stamper

The last entry of the week belongs to Rachel Potter! Many viewers might recognize her work on the Great White Way (The Addams Family & Evita) and more recently, the third season of The X Factor USA. Both Rachel and Joey will leave listeners in a hypnotic state of delight and both the lyrics and arrangement is flawless! Both of them have a bright future in this industry. A-

I do not own the tracks that are highlighted in this piece. They belong to the artists and their respective record companies.

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