May Music Madness: The New Arrivals

By Andy Argyrakis | senior editor,
Posted: Mon, 05/09/2011 - 17:59

album promo image for Sizzle or Fizzle? May Release Round-Up

With this year's Dove Awards live show and television premiere behind us, the past year’s worth of releases has earned their due attention and honors. So why not get a jump on next year’s potential nominees from the first month’s worth of eligible releases? May boasts plenty of variety from pop and modern rock to worship, including Nicole C. Mullen, NewSong and newcomer Katelynne Cox. To find out more, read on.

The Act: Katelynne Cox
The Album: One Girl (Red Hammer)
The Sound: Teen Pop
The Scoop: With an extensive resume including acting, modeling and dancing, teen pop newcomer Katelynne Cox is a star in the making. She speaks of anti-bullying and building up a positive self-esteem (which is sure to make her a hit amongst peers) with a little help from co-writers Chris Sligh and Joy Williams. To read more about Katelynne, visit

The Act: Jessa Anderson
The Album: Not Myself Anymore (BEC Recordings)
The Sound: Adult Contemporary/Pop
The Scoop: With a bevy of astute influences like Sara Groves, Nichole Nordeman and Ginny Owens, Jessa Anderson is poised to become one of this year's breakout troubadours. To catch the Michigan native's sophisticated songwriting based on a compelling testimony of marrying a fellow artist and touring with their young daughter in tow, visit

The Act: Anthem Lights
The Album: Anthem Lights (Reunion)
The Sound: Pop/Modern Rock
The Scoop: Liberty University’s latest import comes in the form of Anthem Lights, an enthusiastic if not entirely original modern rock foursome. The group’s debut disc was produced by The Write Brothers (Newsboys, Me In Motion) and Rob Hawkins (Fireflight, Chasen), which also contributes to an electronically-enhanced sound on occasion, coupled with lyrics fellow teens and 20-somethings are sure to relate to. Visit to learn more.

The Act: Building 429
The Album: Listen to the Sound (Essential)
The Sound: Modern/Electronic Rock
The Scoop: Though Building 429 is most readily regarded for massive hits like “Glory Defined” and “The Space In Between Us,” there’s actually much more substance on this electronically enhanced sonic rebirth. It’s not exactly revolutionary, but Listen to the Sound is hands down the group’s best disc to date, thanks in part to a reality-grounded message that ends with a sense of spiritual assurance. Check it out at

The Act: Hyland
The Album: Weights & Measures (Tooth & Nail Records)
The Sound: Alternative/Modern Rock
The Scoop: Armed with one of the catchiest alt-rock arsenals of the year, Hyland is poised to follow in the footsteps of past labelmates Anberlin. The Minneapolis act even teams up with Anberlin’s Stephen Christian for a co- write on and that same act’s prized producer Aaron Sprinkle (also known for his time with Kutless and Jeremy Camp). Check out Hyland's official Facebook page.

The Act: Nicole C. Mullen
The Album: Captivated (EMI)
The Sound: Adult Contemporary/Worship
The Scoop: The leading soul sensation always includes a vertical bent within her repertoire, but Captivated is a more deliberate foray into worship. Still, her soaring pipes and robust arrangements remain, and though none of the tunes surpass classics like “Redeemer” and “Call On Jesus,” the vibe is still wholeheartedly inspirational. On the web at:

The Act: NewSong
The Album: One True God (NewSong Records)
The Sound: Adult Contemporary/Worship
The Scoop: As curators for the arena-filling Winter Jam Tour, NewSong’s performed for more than half a million fans thus far this year! As a result, anticipation is high for the group’s latest prayerful and praise-filled collection, loaded with all its blue-eyed soul and signature harmonies. Visit for more.

The Act: Swimming With Dolphins
The Album: Water Colours (Tooth & Nail)
The Sound: Electronic Pop
The Scoop: Owl City's Adam Young was once a member of Swimming With Dolphins, though these days, his pal and previous collaborator Austin Tofte operates the one-man band with a rotating cast of backers. Nonetheless, there’s a synth-pop presence on Water Colours that’s likely to strike the fancy of Owl City, Joy Electric and OneRepublic fans. To read more, visit

The Act: Nathan Tasker
The Album: Home (Entertainment One)
The Sound: Pop/Rock
The Scoop: With household recognition status in Australia, singer/songwriter Nathan Tasker is hoping to make a mark on America. Boasting a melodic pop sound, cozy vocals and an all-star production team that includes Charlie Peacock, chances are he'll make a similar impact on stateside shores. Visit Nathan's website at

The Act: John Waller
The Album: As For Me and My House (City of Peace)
The Sound: Pop/Adult Contemporary
The Scoop: Faithful fans may remember the name John Waller as lead singer of According to John, though more recently, he found fame as a solo artist and soundtrack contributor to Fireproof. These days, he’s channeling his own pensive pop within Casting Crowns-styled anthems that won’t have any trouble connecting with both the church and the radio waves. At, you can sign a declaration to say you've decided to serve the Lord within your household.

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About the Writer

Andy Argyrakis is a Chicago-based entertainment writer/photographer who appears in the Chicago Tribune, IllinoisEntertainer, Daily Journal, Concert Livewire, Hear/Say Magazine and Image Chicago (to name few). His record label writing credits include Warner Brothers, Atlantic, Curb, EMI and Universal, with additional photo credits for Fuse TV, Live Nation, Nikon, Pollstar, Celebrity Access, Paste Magazine, and He’s also the author/narrator of "Access Matthews" (an audio CD tracing the career of Dave Matthews Band) and spends considerable time on tour, including outings with Arlo Guthrie, The Guess Who, Madina Lake (on Linkin Park’s Projekt Revolution) and Gospel Music Channel’s very own "Gospel Dream" (where he served as season one judge).

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