What impressed me most about, Atlanta, Georgia-based Rebecca Loebe is how much thought she puts into her music. As a result she gets her songs over to the listener. Good songs they are too! Loebe was born and first raised in Arlington, Virginia before her parents moved to Atlanta and at 17 she moved up to Boston. It is where she attended Berklee College Of Music and go on to gain her first foothold in music. That of music engineer is something she can list on her resume.
Loebe writes shrewd, intelligent and entertaining songs that obtain an excellent balance and promise much. Mystery Prize is her third album and was amazing as it sounds, financed completely by advance orders by her fans. Winner of the 2009 New Folk songwriting contest at the Kerrville (Texas) Festival her music is a rare mix of folk, country and pop. Not too far away from shrewd innovative act Anais Michell (‘Trenches, Dear’ is a perfect illustration). I feel it is here, through her ‘artistic’ styled approach the recording loses a good deal of the impact earned through the likes of knock-out songs ‘Redneck Karaoke Bar’, the free-flowing ‘Marguerita’ that speaks of how she will uncross every border and of standing in a chapel making promises and making love the morning. Jacked up with a joyful, Borderland’s melody it is a winner, plus it has a great deal of social awareness as she speaks of the US immigration policy. It backed by some gems, too as in the jaunty and humour-filled (accordion plied) ‘Married Man’ and exciting, Dobro fuelled folk country cut ‘Meridian’. A song that has her speak of Mississippi she injects a feel of daring and adventure into her work. True, she can’t always be on the front foot but there is so much of the moody music I can take in one serving that Loebe does, keep in mind.
Title-track ‘Mystery Prize’ an easy loping affair and gentle like ‘Land & Sea’ and ‘California’ —that speaks of alcohol and nicotine it possesses a reflective and at times, wistful feel. When it comes to striking the perfect balance between artistic and entertainment ‘Her In That Dress’ measures up, perfectly. I love the sax and tinkling piano, shame the album gives no mention to the musicians. This must be an over-sight, surely.
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