Music | CD Revue: RuRu, Nate Baldwin, Rapid Development | CD Reviews | Salt Lake City Weekly

Music | CD Revue: RuRu, Nate Baldwin, Rapid Development 

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RuRu Elizabeth

When I first pushed play, “Why” had me thinking Elizabeth (Northplatte Records) would be an upbeat alt-country album, but it quickly wandered down a path of candid, melancholy tracks and stayed the course. RuRu, aka Isaac Russell, has tremendous vocal range and sets the album’s gloomy tone. I am not sure how old he is or why he feels this blue, but with his lyrics—blended with impeccable singing—I want to step up and give the poor dude a hug. That, and a plethora of my favorite instruments including pedal steel guitar, mandolin, harmonica and banjo, make this album amazingly concise, clean and wise beyond its years.

Nate Baldwin The Complete EP

I’m all about the “glass half-full” attitude, and that is straight-up what this EP has to offer. It’s kind of like watching cartoons on a Saturday morning. Judging by this effort, Baldwin is happy and blissful in love. Well, good for him, dammit, good for him! The album has a Tiger Beat pop feel to it, with an endearing, sensitive naivety that I thought only high schoolers still possessed. This EP might wind up in your guilty pleasures den, because we all want to feel this optimistic again—but we’ll rarely admit it out loud.

Rapid Development Rapid Development

If you’ve ever wondered what happens in a mother’s basement in Orem, wonder no longer. R.D.’s CD came to fruition in his friend Definit’s mom’s house. Or crib? As an off-and-on fan of hip-hop, I have to admit that it has been awhile since I’ve heard something that kept me coming back for more. R.D. cites an impressive list of musical influences, and his diverse schooling shows through on his eponymous release. It has some catchy beats to it. The singing isn’t cheesy or full of over-the-top bravado, either. The lyrics flow nicely. Kudos to Rapid for turning me on to local hip-hop again.

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