Following last year’s stripped-down Shimmer, with her new album, Pieta Brown returns to a more familiar sound with longtime guitarist and producer, Bo Ramsey.
Brown is a wonderful songwriter. Mixing folk, country, rock, and a bit of blues, her work is full of wonderful imagery and moods. Here, Brown and Ramsey show a lot of restraint, and their effort lends atmosphere to the songs. For instance, “Wishes Falling Through the Rain” has a smoky lyric/vocal and spooky electric guitar. “Other Way Around” is a quiet folk tune with a gorgeous vocal and lovely Ramsey electric guitar. Speaking of, Ramsey doesn’t go for fire-breathing solos here. Instead, he darts effortlessly around the vocals, playing with soul, elegance, and nuance. His playing and production style are a perfect match for Brown’s writing and expressive vocals.
The other solo instrument that contributes on a few cuts here is the pedal steel of Brian Wilkie, and it’s as tasteful as all the other elements.
There are no bad cuts on One and All. Rather, it’s one of those albums where every listen reveals something new and worthwhile.
This article originally appeared in VG’s Jul. ’10 issue. All copyrights are by the author and Vintage Guitar magazine. Unauthorized replication or use is strictly prohibited.