A Review of the CD
"drag queens in limousines"
by Mary Gauthier

"drag queens in limousines"
by Mary Gauthier

Copyright 1999 - 41962
In The Black Records

This review is written by Kevin McCarthy, 12/99
"Kevin and Maxine’s Celtic & Folk Music CD Reviews"
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Mary Gauthier is an old soul ensconced in the body of a 30-something-year-old. Having acquired a kaleidoscopic collage of chilling experiences and searing memories, along with a few requisite scars, she has expurgated her past into a release whose landscape is littered with the essences of those who have lived and loved--too little, too much, never seemingly in the appropriate balance for the moment or time.

The Louisiana-born Gauthier speaks and sings her material and, at times, especially on "I Drink," sounds like an female incarnation of John Prine. A more apt overall description of her music though would be Fred J. Eaglesmith on Qualudes--she even closes out her CD with a train song! But Gauthier's material, while illuminating many of the same shadows and dark sides as Eaglesmith, is of a much slower pace and quieter sound.

On the title cut, she describes leaving high school and her family behind for the colorful life of the big city. Closing out the cut, she proudly sings:

The eerie "Our lady of the Shooting Stars" follows. Gauthier, at her most mystical and poetic, offers: "I Drink" is a defiant, honest and bleak acknowledgment of one's true self, an acceptance of a supposedly genetically ordained fate. Gauthier sings: This one has the makings for Alcoholics Anonymous' national anthem.

"Lucky Stars" has probably already been adopted by Relationships Anonymous. Gauthier plaintively and ironically sings:

"Different Kind Of Gone" displays the differences in needs that both binds individuals together and sometimes drives them apart. What we are willing to accept or possibly settle for seems to be the relationship glue here: An emotional and verbal faux pas is the crux of "Slip of the Tongue." Gauthier sings: She closes with the rhythmic and charming "Jackie's Train," offering an quirky perspective on life emanating from a train set.

It may seem like Gauthier has never seen a sunrise she couldn't douse but don't let that scare you away. Her superb writing and absolutely authentic drawl elevate her music above that of the typical struggling singer-songwriter. Her talent for presenting what she has lived and seen is a superb. As she ages into the various stages of life, it will be fascinating to hear the world she captures and documents with her subsequent releases.

Track List:

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