Monday, October 6, 2008

Reviews:: Castlemusic You Can't Take Anyone

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Whenever you hear of a big upset in sports, it’s usually followed with some overused cliché like – "that’s why they play the game" or "you can’t measure the intangibles." I think the same type of shit can be said when you throw on a record you assume will sound like one you’ve heard hundreds of times before, and remarkably it holds your attention like a vice.

You see, Castlemusic – aka Jennifer Castle - isn’t really doing anything you haven’t heard before. Folky blues on a solo electric or stripped bare piano ballads, I mean, both those styles are pretty common fair these days, but something about how Jennifer sings leaves an impression. Whether it’s the swampy, foot stomp style she and Doug Tielli deliver on We Always Change or the ghostly duet Your Hand Is A Wing, Castle gets more out of simple arrangements and textbook sounds than you can imagine. She controls every note, understanding that when you want to deliver spiritual songs often less is more, and the end result is that even the most stripped down songs are flooded with emotion. The album opener, One Two Three, uses only slow played piano chords but is riveting.

So to paraphrase the cliche, "that’s why you play the record." There are only so many chords and so many metaphors to go around and usually it’s not just want you say, but how you say it. There are people who could recite a phone book and make you believe and there are people who could pen the best narratives in the world and you’d still drift off. Castle falls heavily into the former and when she wrestles with her thoughts on the powerful album closer Who, you are left emotionally spent and musically satisfied, but quite ready to give the disc another listen.

Posted at 1:07 PM by ack :: 0 comments

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