Flyinshoes Review

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New York-based singer-songwriter Annie Keating after her sublime album Belmont has once again come through with a mighty fine album. Water Tower View is one of those recordings that eat away at the listener’s defences, rounding off the edges as it deftly creeps into one’s subconscious (like in the poetic gem ‘Victoria Station’; a song inspired by her visit here last year, 2009). That is other to the occasions, that incidentally are every bit as impressive when she kicks up a ruckus as she belts out music edged in inviting hard edged textures. That though not of a cutting to the bone variety such is her energy and the strength that exudes from her every busy, every prompting, cohesive style Annie’s efforts see layer upon layer stacked up.

Keating’s style embraces rock; pop, blues and Americana plus traces of country music as evident on the likes on the Dobro plied, lively as cricket ‘First Of November’. A track that also comes with harmonica, harmony vocals and a wonderful melody rich in shuffling percussion topped off by her excellent singing voice it is one of the best of the bunch (but only just). Plus you have, with fine use of Weissenborn guitar ‘Scene 1’ and ‘The Hollow’. These are two songs hit that magical spot, as do a hatful more as one subtly change in style if followed by another without as much a pause in her out pouring of heartfelt creations. It is like her heart and own emotions are left open for the listener to sample. Like an open wound at times Keating leaves nothing untold or holds back in the telling of her personal thoughts —for she is the real deal if ever there were one, plus she doesn’t have go to some dark and unattainable place to underline her emotions.

With her sleeves rolled up gritty blue-collar values and her free-spirited approach Keating is a must hear. Not least is this the case than with ‘The Borderline’ plus there are the likes of title-track ‘Water Tower View’ and the rocking harmonica fired, funky ‘On the Loose’ where she speaks of going down to the race track and spent all that she had!

Aiding Keating on the record we have Bo Ramsey (electric, lap steel, high strung and Weissenborn guitar, Jason Mercer (electric / double bass), Chris Benelli (drums, percussion), Tina Hamilin (harmonica), John Caban, electric, slide guitar) plus a host more too many to mention on this Brooklyn recording (give or take a session or two).

Maurice Hope

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November 2017

JW Roy & The Royal Family
80 pts.
A Room Full Of Strangers
Royal Family Records
Chris Hillman
79 pts.
Bidin' My Time
Turnpike Troubadours
46 pts.
Long Away From Your Heart
Bossier City Records
Jolie Holland & Samantha Parton
36 pts.
Wildflower Blues
Cinquefoil Records
Eilen Jewell
34 pts.
Down Hearted Blues
Signature Sounds
Lucinda Williams
31 pts.
This Sweet Old World
Highway 20/Thirty Tigers
JD McPherson
29 pts.
Undivided Heart & Soul
New West
Mark Martyre
26 pts.
Tom Russell
26 pts.
Folk Hotel
Frontera Records-Proper Records
Anna Tivel
25 pts.
Small Believer
Fluff And Gravy Records
Margo Price
25 pts.
All American Made
Third Man Records
Fred Wickham
22 pts.
Mariosa Delta
Thirty Days Records
Joe Henry
22 pts.
Ear Music
Whitney Rose
22 pts.
Rule 62
Six Shooter/Thirty Tigers
Dick LeMasters
18 pts.
Incompatible Things
Longneck Road Music
Jim White
18 pts.
Waffles, Triangles & Jesus
Loose Music
Peter Gallway
18 pts.
Feels Like Religion
Gallway Bay Music
Thomm Jutz
17 pts.
Crazy If You Let It
Mountain Fever Records
Kris Delmhorst
16 pts.
The Wild
Blue Blade Records
Daniel Crabtree
15 pts.
In The Shadow Of His Wings
Jeremy Pinnell
15 pts.
Ties Of Blood And Affection
Sofaburn Records
Julien Baker
15 pts.
Turn Out The Lights
Amber Cross
14 pts.
Savage on the Downhill
Chris Blevins
14 pts.
Better than Alone
Horton Records
David Rawlings
14 pts.
Poor David's Almanack
Acony Records
Grainne Duffy
14 pts.
Where I Belong
Jeff Crosby
14 pts.
Postcards From Magdalena
At The Helm Records

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