CD REVIEW: Brandi Carlile "Give Up The Ghost"

On her third album, Brandi Carlile has shined brighter than ever before. This album brings the songwriting to the forefront of each of her songs, with the entire band and instrumentation adding the punctuation to her incredible compositions. She showcases her ability to rock as always and she also has brought her storytelling through song to the next level. "Dreams," the album's first single, could possibly be her best song to date. More than ever before, she shows that she will, and may already be, the next Sheryl Crow or Melissa Etheridge. The sound of Americana-style rock music is some of the best ever by a female performer. The album also features a guest spot by music legend, Elton John, who lends his musical talents and unparalleled vocal to "Caroline." She even gets a little help from the Indigo Girls' Amy Ray and Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Chad Smith. Carlile even picks up the banjo and sits behind the piano on this album as well, showing us that she's not just another girl with a guitar.

CD REVIEW: Andrew Hoover "Chances, Stances, And Romances"

Andrew Hoover is a breath of fresh air in the music industry. His debut full length album is one of the most refreshing and inventive albums to come out this year. From start to finish the album is full of well crafted songwriting, stellar production, and some of the coolest musical arrangements found in this style of music. Andrew has an incredibly soulful voice and is an outstanding guitar player as well. He brings elements of John Mayer mixed with elements of John Legend to life in his own unique way. His closest musical comparison is possibly Kyle Riabko, but Hoover's music certainly stands alone. The best tracks on the disc are "Lie To Me," "Come On." and "Saturday," but the entire album, from start to finish, is incredible. Andrew Hoover has brought soul back to the world of the singer/songwriter.