Pick Six is a half-dozen cool things in music, from two points of view.
Rick Lee of St. Cloud:
1 Larkin Poe, “Self Made Man.” If the three released singles from this record, which drops June 12, are any indication, this is another great contemporary blues album from these remarkable 30-ish sisters from Georgia. You will not regret catching them live next time they come to town.
2 Lucinda Williams, “Good Souls Better Angels.” On her new album, she reminds again that she is an American treasure. Still at the peak of her songwriting genius, she shows us she remains a master of album recording.
3 “Purple Rain” by Eric Clapton. A warm pre-COVID-19 memory while we linger in our live-music desolation, Clapton opened the encore of the Crossroads Guitar Festival last September in Dallas with this song. Clapton considered Prince to be the world’s premier guitar player. For a couple of Minnesotans in the audience, it was a spine-tingling cap to a thrilling two-day concert experience.
Chris Riemenschneider of the Star Tribune:
1 “Savage Remix (feat. Beyoncé)” by Megan Thee Stallion. Adding three sizzling verses from her fellow Houston native finally put Megan Pete on top of Billboard’s Hot 100. It’s a No. 1 hit well deserved, showing off the 25-year-old rapper’s catchy lyrical prowess while also displaying a rare snide side of Queen Bey.
2 “Grae” by Moses Sumney. The North Carolina singer, who’s made a big splash regionally at the Eaux Claires festivals, should go over in an even bigger way nationally with this ultra-groovy but electro-soul double LP, featuring Thundercat on bass and ultra-emo vocals that are just plain pristine.
3 “Hometown Hero” by Actual Wolf. After moving back to northern Minnesota from Northern California, psychedelic alt-twanger Eric Pollard gets a Doug Sahm-like TexiCali groove on for his latest and most swinging album yet. It drops Friday just in time to set a hazy summer hue.