Rachel Page, |
Chase the Blues
(Regal Peach, 1994;
Rachel Page's album, Chase the Blues lives up to its title. She has a lovely voice, light and pleasant to listen to; her lyrics are intelligent, thoughtful and far-reaching; and the musicianship on the album is top quality. Her style ranges over the 11 tracks from an upbeat country and swing blend ("Feelin' Better") with some superb trumpet work from Derry Byrne, to gentle ballads ("Heaven" and "Mama") and soft blues ("Tranquilizer"). There is a great jazzy Reinhardt & Grappelli-esque track, "Trouble," with Rachel and Pierre Lumoncel on guitars and Cam Wilson on violin.
"Till I'm Gone" has a light touch on banjo and dobro, and is a sweet and sad little song. "Belinda" and "Delilah" are two different songs, two different women and very different styles, "Delilah" sounding fairly traditional and folk-based in lyrics and music, and "Belinda" being another kind of innocent in danger.
I enjoyed the variety of influences in Page's songs, and the varied styles ensure continued listening interest. Page writes and sings and plays -- and does everything to a degree of excellence often missing on independent productions. She takes the listener through emotions and scenarios, but definitely leaves on a high. This album both calms and lifts the spirit.