Kate McDonnell,
Don't Get Me Started
(dOG-eARED dISCS, 2001)

Kate McDonnell was completely new to me, and so -- armed with a single sheet press release -- I sat down to listen a few times to this CD.

Her sound is very familiar but I found it hard to place until the third time through. She sounds like Joan Baez at times and writes like Leonard Cohen. These songs grow on you if you give them a chance. (This is a common problem for new singers and songwriters. We like the familiar but cannot always give time to get familiar with new work.)

Kate solves this on one track, "Banks of the Ohio," by giving us her family's interpretation of the song.

Her self-penned items are in the main very sad and appear to reflect troubled times. This may be true or a reflection of a very convincing storyteller in fiction.

Track ten, "What Good Will It Do," is intriguing. I have listened a number of times but cannot pin down who she is advising. Is it a friend or a relative? "Take Me Home" is another tale of yearning. It is a good song, well-crafted and well-delivered.

Basically, Kate needs air play to get her style and songs recognised and heard. If she gets that break she will be big.

[ by Nicky Rossiter ]
Rambles: 28 July 2001