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Josh Hurst

Brandi Carlile - The Firewatcher's Daughter

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Well, yes... I suppose you could interest me in this.

 

 

Seizing the occasion of a label switch to shake up her approach to recording, Brandi Carlile cut The Firewatcher's Daughter quickly, bashing out its 12 songs in a series of single takes with longtime collaborators Tim and Phil Hanseroth. The Twins, as the Hanseroth brothers are known, have been by Carlile's side since her 2005 eponymous debut, so this album doesn't amount to a shift in aesthetic as much as it is a consolidation -- a consolidation that just so happens to leave a few frayed edges dangling. It's a nifty trick, emphasizing mess, especially in the wake of records where all the loose ends were appealingly tied.

 

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Whew, what a great surprise! This is a wonderfully lively, raucous album that blurs the lines between rock, country, and low-key folk. It's full of great performances and memorable hooks. There have been a lot of great new records already this year, including many from great female singer/songwriters, but this one stands tall among the best of them.

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