Pin It
Favorite

CD Reviews 

by ANN M. COLFORD and DARCY CAPUTO & r &


MARY-CHAPIN CARPENTER


The Calling


4 Stars


& lt;span class= & quot;dropcap & quot; & I & lt;/span & 've always had a soft spot for Mary-Chapin Carpenter, perhaps because she and I are nearly the same age -- as she observes the world and turns her reflections into songs, those songs resonate with where I am in my life. "It Must Have Happened" captures the wonder of waking up in middle age to realize that the life you've got is the life you're going to have, for better or worse -- but mostly for better. Of course, she's also a wry social commentator, and that comes through on "Houston," about a life uprooted by Hurricane Katrina, and "On With the Song," written for the Dixie Chicks. Musically speaking, she breaks no new territory here, alternating between aching ballads and straight-ahead country-tinged rockers. But as usual, her lyrics deliver exquisite portraits of contemporary American life, and her honeyed contralto is like your most comfortable pair of worn jeans.





--ANN M. COLFORD





DOWNLOAD: "Leaving Song"





BILL CALLAHAN


Woke on a Whaleheart


3 Stars


& lt;span class= & quot;dropcap & quot; & W & lt;/span & hile the name Bill Callahan probably doesn't ring a bell to even the most seasoned indie aficionado, the "band" Smog should. Like John Darnielle of the Mountain Goats, or Jeff Mangum of Neutral Milk Hotel, Smog is (or more correctly was) the name Callahan used to record as early as the late '80s.





It's not clear judging by this record why Callahan chose to retire the name Smog in favor of his own, because Woke on a Whaleheart is not a major departure from recent Smog contributions. Callahan's distinctive baritone voice, coupled with his signature deadpan vocal delivery, remains highly intact. And the style of songwriting continues to be reflective, wry and intimate.





Standout tracks include the exquisite "Sycamore" as well as the folksy, gospel-tinged "The Wheel." Callahan always presents decent output, but as with most Smog records, this is hardly anything to get excited about.





-- DARCY CAPUTO





DOWNLOAD: "Sycamore"
  • Pin It

Latest in Comment

  • A Simple Plan
  • A Simple Plan

    Impeaching judges and other modest proposals to shrink government
    • Mar 25, 2015
  • Those Teeth Are Sharp
  • Those Teeth Are Sharp

    Publisher's Note
    • Mar 25, 2015
  • Defending the System
  • Defending the System

    The American criminal justice system guarantees a defense for all; dedicated professionals make it happen
    • Mar 25, 2015
  • More »

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Today | Wed | Thu | Fri | Sat | Sun | Mon
Explore America’s Backyard

Explore America’s Backyard @ Spokane

Wed., April 1, 5:30-7:30 p.m.

All of today's events | Staff Picks

More by Ann M. Colford

  • East Meets West
  • East Meets West

    For flavors of the east, head west — just a few miles west, to the international restaurant row in Airway Heights
    • Oct 19, 2009
  • HEALTHY HOMES: How Green is My Yard?
  • HEALTHY HOMES: How Green is My Yard?

    Conventional lawn care exacts a heavy toll on the environment and your budget, but there are healthy alternatives
    • Jul 1, 2009
  • Mining For Salt
  • Mining For Salt

    Studies show you should cut back on salt — but first you have to find it
    • May 1, 2009
  • More »

Most Commented On

  • Why Idaho kids don't go to college

    And what that means for the Gem State
    • Mar 4, 2015
  • New Blood

    Candidates are launching bids for Spokane City Council and could bring big changes to city government
    • Mar 18, 2015
  • More »

Top Tags in
News & Comment

Briefs


Comment


Publisher's Note


marijuana


long reads


© 2015 Inlander
Website powered by Foundation