26 August 2013

Sera Cahoone - Deer Creek Canyon


Sometimes I rest on blogs for a while - I have attempted to review this one a few times to be honest, but I have never really gotten any further than the title.  It has nothing to do with the material, it is more that way I am when I start this album.  I have just been looking for other thing to listen to as I find that Americana can be a strange genre for me.  It is either really well done or it is just one of the most annoying music genres that I have ever had the misfortunate to listen to.  So I have tried to get myself in a mood when I am neither of those extreme moods - I want to be fair to this release.  When I first heard it I was astounded by the laid back promise of what was on offer here. Sera Cahoone is a native of Seattle, Washington and most of her releases have been released via the seminal label Sub Pop (now owned by Warner Brothers).  This is different from the sound that Sub Pop is famous for, but labels can and have to diversify otherwise they fall; look at Roadrunner records (also owned by Warner Brothers, but that label has been destroyed).  But this is not a review of the labels, but of Sea Cahoone's third release from 2012. 

Musically this could be used in the emotional scenes of many a teen-drama or the more serious parts of the TV show 'Scrubs'.  This is not a bad thing, it is just I can see pieces like "One To Blame" being used in this way, which can be a little detracting from what is well crafted Americana.  I feel like I am looking for the next commercial use of the songs.  I blame the TV channel E4 in the UK and all those types of programs.  But after this very small niggle, there is a quality to this album that unfolds like a flower in the sun.  The steel guitar and banjo work mixed with Cahoone's dusky vocals on tracks such as "One To Blame" and "Worry All Your Life" is beautifully composed and delivered.  The build and execution of "Anyway You Like" is second to none, from slow start to the big chorus crescendo at the end - beautiful.  Whilst this may not be for everyone, for fans of the genre this is a worthwhile addition to the collection.  It might be a few songs too long, but it doesn't detract from the fact that this is a very good record.  Whilst I cannot get over the feeling of familiarity without actually knowing the album when I first put it on, I cannot shy away from the quiet dignity and power that is on offer here - if you’re interested in Americana, do yourself a favour and hunt this down.  This does not fall into the annoying category, not at all.

7 out of ten - This is good and well worth a check

You can purchase from Amazon here

You can visit the Sera Cahoone website here

You can listen to the album on Spotify here

You can also hear a session that she done for Folkadelphia via their bandcamp here

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