MATT WHITE Best Days
The debut album from this singer-songwriter is solid but a little too safe. Still, no matter how predictable his VH1-friendly pop-rock gets, there’s no denying the catchiness of tunes like “Miracles” and the title-track single.
LITTLE BIG TOWN A Place to Land
This coed quartet brings to mind a country version of Fleetwood Mac on harmony-laden highlights like “To Know Love” and “Lonely Enough.” Like the Macsters, they even switch up on lead.
ARI GOLD Transport Systems
With his R&B-flavored pop, this New York scenester occasionally evokes another openly gay artist: George Michael. Matter-of-factly acknowledging his sexuality in his lyrics, Gold takes the listener to fresh places.
In Yoruba, the native language of her Nigerian dad, this newcomer’s name means “joy.” Her acoustic soul—a breezy blend of R&B and pop, reggae and folk, African and Latin—will have India. Arie and Sade fans feeling the love.