Saturday, May 7, 2016

MUSIC REVIEW OF THE DAY: CHRISTA COUTURE - LONG TIME LEAVING



The wonderful Edmonton-born singer-songwriter always has deep strength in her lyrics and crystal-clear folk vocals, but on her new album, she gets a beefed-up sound as well. Joining her are producer Steve Dawson, always an artist's best pal, plus the dynamic rhythm section of drummer Gary Craig and bassist John Dymond (Blackie & the Rodeo Kings, Bruce Cockburn, etc.)


The effect of the added colour is a wide selection of styles, and lots of subtle instrumental moments that add a ton to the already-captivating lyrics and charming melodies. A multi-instrumentalist, Dawson drops in highly-complimentary parts such as the pedal steel that winds around Couture's piano on In The Papers. The waltz-time Solid Ground gets an old-time rural feel, with lap steel. But That Little Part Of Your Heart follows those up with Dymond's fluid rock bass, and If I Still Love You has a fun pop groove.


In the meantime, you can get deep into some pretty special lyrics, as Couture winds up a relationship with some wise insights, and tough love. Her use of language is always a cut above, dropping in words such as cryptographer, happenstance, honey comb, and her illustrative powers make each song ring true: "The hallways are neatly lined with boxes stacked/this is what eight years looks like stacked."


Couture winds up her album release tour in Fredericton at Grimross Brewing on Saturday, May 7 at 8:30.

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