P.O. Box 165
Northhampton, MA 01061
This review is written by Kevin McCarthy, 4/99
"Kevin and Maxine’s Celtic & Folk Music CD Reviews"
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Compiling a set of intimate and intriguing songs, Dana Robinson engagingly draws in the listener with his soft but emotive voice, well-crafted melodies, excellent instrumentation and at times, accessible, at times, perplexing lyrics.
A fairly stark production at the surface level, Robinson has adeptly mixed in flourishes in the various cuts that augment each song and provide a greater quality of richness throughout the release. "Sadie" features backing vocals by Lui Collins. "Goodbye MaryJane" has splices of mandolin. "Redpoll" and "Lazy Jane' offer soft banjo touches. "Redpoll" and "Wishing Pool" feature light accordian while "Sweet Dream", "Heaven" and "Shady Grove" serve up some sweet violin. His vocals, mixed with Rani Arbo's violin, make this rendition of "Shady Grove" the best to date. To top everything off, Robinson's guitar play is especially adept.
"Stalk Your Calling" is one of his more opaque songs. Starting out describing a fierce battle between an eagle and a weasel, he weaves into the loss of a relationship due to fear and ignorance, and finally closes with:
...It's not much like loving whiskey
it's not like drinking gin
It's more like after the fever
and you finally welcome love in...
...So tell me, roots of mercy
where will my tree grow
If I find a place in your garden
would you let my angel know..."
Robinson is superb on guitar, mandolin and banjo, and quite ably assisted by Lui Collins on vocals and guitar, Rani Arbo on fiddle and vocals, Rose Sinclair on accordian, Adam Rothberg on bass, and Keith Leverault on drums.
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