1. The Hold Steady
To me, The Hold Steady is the ultimate example of a grower band. The first time I listened this Minneapolis band, I was not a fan. I could not get past Craig Finn's voice or how he sing-talks. The guitars were too loud and raw. I did not get why everyone loved this band so much.
How Resurrection Really Feels (from "Separation Sunday") mp3Citrus (from "Boys and Girls in America") mp3
Gold Soundz (from "Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain") mp3Zurich is Stained (from "Slanted and Enchanted") mp3
I love mountainy musicians, like Fleet Foxes and Ray LaMontagne. I usually develop an admiration instantly because, I think, part of me wishes I lived surrounded by sky-lines made of mountains instead of those made of sky scrapers. The instant love I expected to have with Bon Iver did not happen at first sound. It was something about the raw nature of his voice that made me wonder, "Could anyone's voice actually sound like that naturally?" I liked the guitars though so I kept listening to "For Emma, Forever Ago." After 12+ listens, I grasped the true talent of Justin Vernon. His voice is definitely an acquired taste. But I believe his unique voice and gorgeous lyrics have secured him a place in the Mount Rushmore of mountainy musicians (if there was one).