I love XM Radio. I used to really like Shoutcast and other online radios because I could find commercial-free streams of eclectic music. However, since I’m paying for XM, and since I have to watch my bandwidth usage at work, I’ve been listening to it more. One great feature both mediums share is the ability to see the song title and artist while you are listening. I’ve found some great new tunes this way, and have subsequently purchased the CDs. Great marketing tool – they know what they are doing.
On XM’s year-end Nude Music Review (which seems useless on RADIO), they review new CDs by Vienna Teng and Marc Broussard. Last night I hit Horizon Records and purchased both, along with a classic Elvis Costello. Warm Strangers is Vienna Teng’s second CD. It has some very catchy tunes, such as Hope on Fire, but for the most part seem quite lyrical. To be honest, I haven’t listened to it as closely, but it seems like a CD that will be part of my staples.
Marc Broussard’s CD is Carencro, and it’s definitely a keeper. Broussard successfully combines pop and soul riffs with funky New Orleans blues (and I didn’t copy that from some promo site.) Back in October, I heard just a bit of an interview on NPR with Broussard, but promptly forgot about him until he popped up in the regular XM rotation. I do remember that NPR touted his rich soulful baritone as belying his youth and Caucasion-ess. Listening to the CD definitely bears that out. Especially the gospel-inspired Home sounds nothing like you would expect from Broussards picture on the cover.
One of the more accessible tunes is Save Me. I’m surprised the Christian Karaoke crowd hasn’t co-opted this one, especially given the refrain…
Give me what I need.
I know you can break these chains
And set me free
The rest of the tune is generic enough, so I can just see this being repeated ad nauseum in some Contemporary service. It’s a shame, because it’s really a nice song.