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MUSIC REVIEW: PEARL – Heartbreak And Canyon Revelry

| 15 September 2018 | Reply

Label: Station House Recordings

Release Date: June 15, 2018

Rating: 10/10

Reviewed by: Todd “Toddstar” Jolicoeur

Having fallen in love with Pearl Aday’s voice when she released her debut disc in 2010, I couldn’t wait to grab her latest disc (wish I had known sooner there WAS a latest disc) and check it out.  While this is quite a different path and sound for Pearl, it is no less enjoyable than her previous disc.  Disc opener “Be Your Own Horses” gives us a major indication where this disc is headed.  While it might not be what you expect, this disc is a fun ride.  The tempo of the chorus is different and keeps you on your toes while the guitar work keeps the song flowing, especially the guitar solo at the bridge.  “All I Got (Gina’s Song)” is a cool track that features Pearls awesome vocals layered against Jim Wilson’s vocals and guitar tones and some killer pedal steel from Joel Martin.  From my first listen through the disc until now, this is still one of my favorite tracks on the collection.  “Who Am I” is a beautiful ballad that showcases the softer side of Pearl’s vocal prowess.  The groove of the track is genuine and the lyrics hit home to anyone that is in or has been in love.  “Levon Song” is a fun track that demonstrates how well Wilson and Pearl write together – the lyrics are fun and the songs melody is contagious.  The guitar work on this from Wilson and Scott Ian, as well as band keyboardist Fred Mandel, give the song a great sound and vibe.  “Revel Young” is the perfect storm of Mandel’s keyboards, Pearl’s vocals, and Maness’ pedal, as well as Sayce’s lead guitar parts.  The chorus is contagious and just may get you singing before you finish your first pass through the track.  I really dig Aday’s vocals leading into the bridge, powerful without becoming overbearing.  Disc closer “Let It Go” features a beautiful duet from Wilson and Aday.  The song demonstrates how well the duo writes together as well as singing, but also shows off the bands cohesive feel and sound.  The guitar solo at the bridge is one of the coolest solos on the disc.

“Living A Lie” is a cool rock tune that has a Southern flair woven into the musical tapestry.  The vocals are crisp and the tempo perfect.  The guitars are fun and the rhythm section, anchored by Joey Vera and Ryan MacMillan keeps the song flowing.  Check out the acoustic and electric guitar tandem at the bridge – such a cool sound.  “Sleepless Night” is another track that grabbed me first listen through.  This song not only demonstrates Pearl’s beautiful voice and heartfelt delivery, but how well her vocal tones swirl and blend with Jim Wilson.  This song could take country radio by storm, if you aren’t looking for boy band bro country.  While this song won’t get your head banging or foot tapping, it will keep you coming back.  This one features JayDee Mancess on pedal and Philip Sayce on lead guitar.  “Days Gone By” is a pedal steel driven track that features a killer vocal line from Pearl, as well as awesome background and harmony vocals from Zach Throne and Jim Wilson.  This disc gets better with each track, including this song that triggers me to play it over and over again.  “Nothing Like Romance” is a lighter track that opens with a great acoustic guitar riff that melds perfectly with the vocals and sets the pace and course for the rest of the track.  The blend of Aday and Wilson’s voices on the track elevate this song, even with the simple instrumentation and arrangement.  The layering on the chorus is elegant and adds depth to the track and disc.  “Mama” is a cool rock track that gives us a cool glimpse into a fun sound that merges her 2010 release with the Southern tinged sound from this collection, creating an awesome classic Southern rock vibe.  The vocals are strong and draw you in from the first sound to the last.  The chorus hits and the song grows exponentially, even through the bridge.  This is one of the best hidden gems I found this year thus far.

Tracklisting: Be Your Own Horses – All I Got (Gina’s Song) – Living A Lie – Who Am I – Sleepless Night – Levon Song – Days Gone By – Revel Young – Nothing Like Romance – Mama – Let It Go






Category: CD Reviews

About the Author ()

ToddStar - that's me... just a rocking accountant who had dreams of being a rock star. I get to do the next best thing to rocking the globe - I get to take pictures of the lucky ones that do. I love to shoot all genres of music and different types of performers. If it is related to music, I love to photograph it. I get to shoot and hang with not only some of my friends and idols, but some of the coolest people around today.

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