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Amelia White - Beautiful and Wild

  by Lisa Torem

published: 27 / 1 / 2012

Amelia White - Beautiful and Wild
Label: Amelia White
Format: CD


Poignant and honest Americana on fifth album from Virginia born singer-songwriter and musician, Amelia White

Virginia born singer-songwriter Amelia White became transfixed by her older brother's record collection, which drew her to the Stones, the Beatles and even Muddy Waters. She took her twenty-dollar guitar and began her career in the last year of the last millennium with 'Comes and Goes', followed by 'Blue Souvenirs' two years later. Her move to Nashville found her recording 'Black Doves'; the move also validated her love of Americana. Her newest album, 'Beautiful and Wild', was produced by Marco Giovino in Nashville. The first tune, 'Skeleton Key' is offbeat and precocious. "Skeleton Key, don't open your skeleton eyes...,” she requests, with her winsome voice. Her ladylike request though, soon turns wacky: "I'm gonna hunt you..." White's approach to songwriting offers subtle surprises such as this. 'Sidewalks' masks a deeper meaning. It is sonically shaded in the 1960s and written about the loss of a dear family member. Her voice evokes tearfulness and the harmonies are direct and innocent. 'Lonely Sound' is made hauntingly beautiful by the addition of John Jackson's blues harp. The barrage of backing instruments lend a favourable Americana sobriety too. The title song was written on behalf of songwriter/guitarist and friend, Duane Jarvis, who co-wrote 'Still I Long For Your Kiss' with Lucinda Williams. He died in 2009. The lovely ballad brings out a unique dimension of White's voice. It sounds old-fashioned, yet fresh, like a modern day Dolly Parton. 'Saxophone Trains' is one of the most poetic: "I know it's been a bitter pill and the cards in our hands are not lucky." 'Mercy' is a duet with A.J. Croce. "Little sparrow wants a crumb on a cold day"...So much compassion is conveyed with the assistance of a vibrant choir. 'Molten Fire' comes alive with Marco Giovino's thrashing sticks, the firm confidence of bassist Ron Eogg and throbbing lead guitar by Joe V. McMahan. The one cover, 'More Than This' (Bryan Ferry) has a unique, mystical arrangement, but White does better with her homegrown stuff. 'Madeline' is a translucent arrangement performed with a great deal of heart. "Lonely is the only place I know, Madeline, let it go..." Her acerbic line of "The sidewalks of my mind are not the pretty kind" ensures that this plaintive ballad becomes a memorable one. 'Saint Christopher' is a departure from the other album's tunes. She dips into a more alternative mode, breaks free from the country/folk fixation and allows us to see a more fierce and fascinating side. 'Rider Ghost' creeps out of White's darkest cul-de-sacs. Written at a time when her writing became a painful challenge, she poured herself fully into this epiphany’s creation. 'Beautiful and Wild' is a moving and honest album which stares dead ahead at our losses and recoveries. White’s trajectory can only lead to more magical implosions.

Track Listing:-
1 Skeleton Key
2 Sidewalks
3 Lonely Sound
4 Beautiful and Wild
5 Saxophone Trains
6 Mercy
7 Molten Fire
8 More Than This
9 Madeline
10 Saint Christopher
11 Rider Ghost

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Rhythm of the Rain (2018)
Latest album from the Nashville-based Amelia White who shows that she has more to offer on it than the usual Americana singer-songwriter
Home Sweet Hotel (2016)

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