Thursday, 25 August 2016

Tami Neilson - Don't Be Afraid, album review

Soaring Tears

Another stunning female vocalist, Neilson is startling across both blues and country, and occasional rockabilly-esque/vaudville frivolity as Laugh Laugh Laugh.

Opener Don't Be Afraid is a slow blues that oozes emotional intensity, driven by the soaring voice which struts across an intentionally lethargic riff, a slow drum hit pounding out an assertive support to the rising tension in the song. Second Holy Moses whips the pace into overdrive, and we have take-off. Brakes halt this immediately for third Lonely, a traditional country lament with pedal steel and its tears, vocal duet contribution from Marlon Williams.

There's more in a mix like this, all excellent, and you'll pick your preferences, my liking the ballads for their depth of feeling, eighth Heavy Heart another Country one, beautiful tone in the rising chorus please stop breaking it.

One further mention goes to another duet, ninth Only Tears where the Country count probably tips it slightly away from the blues, pedal steel again but the tears firmly planted in the title and lyrics, Williams soaring once again on that very word. Wonderful.

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