Meg Baird of the
debuted solo with Dear Companion (Drag City, 2007), a humble
collection of covers in the vein of the British folk-revival of the 1960s, followed
by Seasons on Earth (Drag City, 2011), The latter, that benefits from
the contributions of pedal steel guitarist Marc Orleans and other instrumentalists,
evokes West-Coast folksingers of the early 1970s
(somewhere in between Joni Mitchell and
It contains only two covers
(Mark-Almond's Friends and the
House Of Love's Beatles And The Stones)
and therefore is a better portrait of the artist, particularly in
the four longest songs:
Stars Climb Up The Vine, that mixes the
religious-like purity of Celtic singing
with hints of a pre-psychedelic Donovan;
the vibrant Stream, that surges amid intense guitar intercourse
and drowns in a mellow lattice of guitar tones;
the shy and subliminal Share;
and quiet, almost supernatural closer Song For Next Summer.
On the lighter front, Babylon better represents the catchy naive side
of her persona, the one that did not quite emerge from the debut album.
This is a much more intense and mature voice than the first album let us guess.
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