All it takes is 3 chords and a dream!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Review: Brooke Miller - You Can See Everything

Brooke Miller - You Can See Everything

2007, Hickory Records

Brooke Miller hails from Prince Edward Island in Canada, which should tell you something about her upbringing. In case you’re not familiar, PEI was physically isolated from the rest of Canada until something like ten years ago. PEI offers a difficult, almost frontier lifestyle and residents tend to be hard working, resourceful, DIYers: Building their own homes, developing their own entertainments, etc. Miller grew up in the culture of kitchen parties, a Celtic/Scottish tradition passed down through the descendants of the sons and daughters of Ireland and Scotland in Eastern Canada. A kitchen party is essentially family and friends sitting around a table with food, drink, and whatever instruments people happen to own. These often turn into all night affairs. While the traditional Celtic sounds she grew up with don’t inform Brooke Miller’s music, it’s easy to see the effect this acculturation had on her songwriting. On her second album, You Can See Everything, Miller offers up ten songs full of the love of music and the art of storytelling that lies at the heart of the Celtic tradition.

You Can See Everything opens with World On A Whim, a tuneful country rocker that's hummable from the first bar. Brooke Miller has a unique deep alto voice that is not often heard in country music. Her voice is warm and beautiful without being pretty or sweet. There's a motherly quality to her voice that is both comforting and disconcerting at the same time. Two Soldiers is a prime example of this warmth. Miller's voice is both warm and gentle, yet wise and deep like the springs of time. Trouble Where You Seek It is a funky little rocker that will have your toes tapping and your feet wanting to get up and dance.

Miller slows things down a bit on Everywhere, a sweet and melancholy love song that you won't be able to get out of your head. You Can See Everything is a Classic AM pop tune on acoustic guitar. You Can See Everything takes a positive turn as a love song, showing an optimism that is all the more remarkable for its lack elsewhere. Having a pair of ballads out of here system, Miller rocks out Americana style of Country From The Dome Car, a pleasantly frenetic tune with real commercial kick. Other highlights include There You Are (Orchestral version), What Kind Of Move, Am Song and There You Are (Naked version).

Brooke Miller has a distinctive voice and songwriting style that will set her apart from the host of folk/country/Americana musicians currently out there. Miller is eminently talented as a songwriter and performer, and her voice is the sort that could lull you into listening to her all day long. You Can See Everything is an outstanding collection that is very much worth checking out. You'll kick yourself later if you don't give it a try.

Rating: 4.5 Stars (Out of 5)

You can learn more about Brooke Miller at You can order a copy of You Can See Everything from CCNow.

No comments: