“Creatures” by Sweet Crude
This fervent up-and-coming group seeks to preserve French culture in Louisiana through the lens (or amplifier) of indie/alternative rock, where English and French (Franglish, if you will) lyrics are sung interchangeably, resulting in catchy verses and choruses.
Rooted in Cajun French tradition, Sweet Crude’s frenetic sound doesn’t exactly fit into a specific category—rather, it is a conglomeration of various genres and subgenres resonating through these beings who seek this revival of this integral, yet fading, culture in Louisiana.
Vocalist Alexis Crude shows off her chops in the haunting track “Mon Esprit,” where an ethereal intro gives way to an isolated vocal line: “Oh mon âme (Oh, my soul), Je vas chanter pour réveiller mon âme (I’m gonna sing to awaken my soul)” As the song presses on, a tribal tempo picks up the tempo and is quickly accompanied by a synth keyboard, then Crude’s powerhouse vocals join and match the intensity as the song switches to a more lively tone.
“Perfume” by Alabaster Stag
This fusion/funk group devised by lead vocalist Chloe Johnson released the seven-track album “Perfume” a few months ago, and it definitely lives up to its name with Johnson’s sultry vocals and soulful instrumental accompaniment.
The album has an overall relaxed feel with bursts of energized ballads which settle back down to a walking rhythm. Jazz, pop, funk, blues, and rock elements are interwoven throughout the tracks with repetitious lyrics that are sung with varying vocal techniques.
Featured on the album is the track titled “Erzulie,” which explores the selfless side of love and relenting to your own emotions and power.
Overall, “Perfume” is an evocative album that leaves you feeling introspective about your own interpretations and concepts of love.
“Magnolia” by Kristin Diable
Though Kristin Diable started her musical journey in Baton Rouge at an open mic night, she’s anything but an amateur. Her bluesy-rock sound has brought her to festivals like Austin City Limits, Jazz Fest, and Baton Rouge’s Live After 5. Now, with her recent single “Magnolia,” Diable continues to stun.
Proceeds from the single benefit The Roots of Music, a New Orleans music education group, showing Diable’s dedication to her home state. In the song, Diable is nostalgic for a lost love in New Orleans she dubs “Magnolia,” promising them she’ll “soon be there.” Though the lyrics are solemn and wanting, the music is slightly more upbeat, almost fooling the listener into thinking the song is more joyful.
Though it’s not the music itself, it’s worth mentioning the album artwork for this single. A map with a winding river and muted colors, the cover represents the Louisiana Diable croons about in her song. It’s an honest preview of what the listener is going to get in the song and a beautiful piece of artwork on its own.