I recently received Needle Bed, the debut album from Knoxville, Tennessee native John Ralston, in the mail and was pleasantly surprised. John seems to have heavily influences from artists such as Bright Eyes, Wilco, Ryan Adams, and others along those lines, but his voice, which seems to be different in every song, sets him apart from his peers. I haven’t listened to this album enough, but a few tracks have stuck out, so I figured I’d share them with you. The first single, “I Believe in Ghosts” has a sort of creepy tone with John’s up-and-down vocals, but is a simple, blogger-friendly track. “When We Are Cats” reminds me of a cross between Dashboard Confessional, an emo band playing acoustic material, and, for some reason, Simon & Garfunkel (see for yourself). “Gone Gone Gone” fits this mold as well, minus the Simon & Garfunkel. My favorite track, “It’s Not Your Fault” is a blend of these two songs, with simple instrumentals and happy, floaty melodies. I definitely recommend you check out his album, Needle Bed, which was released April 22nd on Vagrant.
Check out John on Myspace.