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Non-Prog CD Reviews

Emily Hurd

Any Given Day

Review by Gary Hill

It’s hard not to like Emily Hurd. In fact, why bother trying? Hurd’s music is retro styled, but holds up well in the modern music scene, too. It’s all basically pop music, but there’s quite a bit of range within. At times Hurd sounds like Janis Joplin, but I’d say she’s better. This is a cool set and should prove entertaining to music fans with a wide range of tastes.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2013  Volume 1 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Evergreen

There’s a classy, retro soulful sound to this number. I like it a lot. There are hints of country music on this.

Cold Outside
The music on this one has some of that country sound and this has a lot of energy and is a lot of fun. It also seems to have some jazz in the mix.
Children Believe

Here we get a stripped down, slow blues styled jazz number that’s quite retro in texture. The melodic guitar solo brings more of that country music reference, but blended with the jazz sound.

Heart of Snow
There are (appropriately) sleigh bells on the start of this. The cut is a fun little number that’s sort of a retro pop standard kind of composition. It feels like it could have come out in the early 1960s.
In the Spirit of Giving

This is a mellow cut based on a piano and vocal melody. It’s a pretty one and works quite well. It’s also rather stripped down in a lot of ways.

Chain of Light

While this tune is completely different than the previous one in terms of melody and song structure, the arrangement is relatively the same. There is a jazzy sound to this one, but it’s mostly just piano and voice. It’s also great.

Glögg

I really love the shuffling retro pop music vibe of this cut. It has a lot more energy than the last couple tunes and just oozes cool.

Good Will

Blues and country blend on this cool retro tune. Hurd’s vocals sound a lot like Janis Joplin here. Then again, that’s prevalent throughout this disc, just more so here.

Any Given Day

Here we get an accessible rock tune that’s arguably the most modern sound of the whole set. It’s also one of the best tunes here.

Westminster Chimes

Starting with a familiar piano melody, this works out to a tasty ballad. It’s effective and a great way to end the set in style. It’s another that’s rather modern in sound.

 
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