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Non-Prog CD Reviews

Auburn

Nashville

Review by Gary Hill

The mix of sounds here ranges from jazz and folk to country and rock and roll with some pop music thrown in. The vocals are very artsy. I suppose the closest connection vocally would be Bjork, but that’s only so accurate. However you describe this, though, it’s an entertaining, if a bit unusual, album. It’s quite effective and highly recommended.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2014  Volume 2 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Sitia Bay

There’s a bouncy world music meets folk sound to this with some jazz in the mix. The vocals are understated and yet soulful. This is a great tune with a real old time sound to it. The killer melodic guitar solo brings both some further jazz and some Americana.

Let’s Start Over
More of an energetic rocker, there is still jazz in the mix here. It’s got a real soulful, almost R&B vibe to it, too. The chorus is killer. That chorus has an almost Motown feeling to it.
Hurting
Although the folk (and to a lesser degree jazz) elements are still here, this is really a slow moving country tune. The slide guitar really brings into a down-home, old school country territory. This is another great song on a disc full of great songs.
Crazy People
Old school rock and roll, art rock and country music blend on this piece. It’s bouncy and fun. They throw a little of Dead or Alive’s “You Spin Me Round” in at the end.
Pride Is a Thief
This is very much a mellow pop standard kind of piece. It’s got quite a bit of folk and jazz in the mix. It’s one of the most readily accessible pieces here – and a great tune. It might be my favorite of the set.
Butterfly

Very much a folk song, this has some leanings toward the folk prog movement. It’s also got some hints in the acoustic guitar approach to Led Zeppelin. With the vocals, though, it perhaps lands closer to early Heart. The more energized section mid-track is a nice touch.

Maybe Tonight
Slide guitar brings some more of that country element to the table. This is overall more of a pop meets folk music song, though. It’s bouncy and fun. Of course, that country sound takes over a bit more as the song progresses later.
Full to the Brim
This is another candidate for best track of the CD. An art rock kind of vibe blends with Americana and some cool bluesy rock and roll on this thing. It’s modern and it’s retro and it’s exceptionally tasty.  It’s a slow moving number that just oozes cool and charm.
I Would Fall Down
The slide guitar is back, and so are the country music elements. This is a fairly slow moving number that has a real gospel feel to it.
Leaving Day
Based on intricate acoustic guitar, this is a fairly gentle folk song.
If You Knew
This shuffling little number has an old-time pop and jazz sound. It’s a classy piece. It’s also fun.
I'm Lost
Very much a slow moving old school country song, this still has some old-time rock and roll and some jazz in the mix.

 

 
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