Album: Caitlin Rose, Own Side Now (Names)
Sounds like twang spirit – the future of country is looking up
Sunday 08 August 2010
Can you catch sight of an exciting new artist too early?
Did the fans who witnessed the Beatles at the Cavern feel a sense of disappointment when they first heard the band on record? Worth asking, because initial listens to Caitlin Rose's debut album left me feeling a tad perplexed. Where was the feisty humour so apparent in those early solo shows and on the "Dead Flowers" EP? Had the good-girl-gone-bad gone back to being good again? Was the 23-year-old widely hailed as the "saviour of country music" playing it too safe?
Some months on, a different picture emerges. Firstly, though "Dead Flowers" got a UK release only last year, it was recorded when Rose was still in her teens. Add to that the fact that the more extreme "country" side of Rose's voice is not something she entirely enjoys listening to, and you're some way closer to discovering why Own Side Now sounds like Rose with the rough edges smoothed over.
Conversely, it's a bold move. The humour, feistiness and attitude are all still here, just not as in-your-face. And in making her album sound this polished, Rose is inviting people who might not ordinarily listen to her genre, in. Once there, they will not be disappointed. The voice (if double-tracked unnecesarily at times; she calls it her "mini-mes") is a gift from the gods; the level of songwriting equally unnatural in one so young.
Put Own Side Now on in the background, and it will not intrude or jar. Listen to it closer and it will deliver everything that was expected from this remarkable new talent.
Highlights? "Sinful Wishing Well" is a stone-cold future classic; "New York City" is as honest and knowing a song as you'll ever hear; "Shanghai Cigarettes" gets a magical makeover from heartbreaker to singalong hit; "Spare Me" is as good as almost anything in Dylan's back catalogue; and, well, the truth is there's not a bad song or dull moment in sight. Sigh.
The best thing to come out of Nashville for decades is transforming before our eyes into the best thing to come out of anywhere for a very long time. And you can't help feeling the crucial years are all ahead of her.
The new Dolly? The new Loretta? Hell no. She's Caitlin Rose. And she's all the better for that.
film Sex scene trailer sees a shirtless Jamie Dornan turn up the heat
Maisie Williams single-handedly rises to the challengeTV
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Venezuela Expo Tattoo 2015: Extreme body art from 'Vampire Woman' to 109mm earlobes
- 2 Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
- 3 Ball pool for adults opens in London
- 4 Amal Clooney gives excellent response to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
- 5 Rashida Jones speaks out against male-centric porn saying 'women should have sex and feel good about it'
Venezuela Expo Tattoo 2015: Extreme body art from 'Vampire Woman' to 109mm earlobes
Game of Thrones really doesn't want Danny Dyer - EastEnders star rejected three times
Game of Thrones season 5 trailer: The first full-length look is here
Sia apologises for 'Elastic Heart' music video that sees Shia LaBeouf wrestle 12-year-old Maddie Ziegler
The secret joke hidden in Silence of the Lambs' most famous line
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
Stephen Fry explains what he would say if he was 'confronted by God'
Have we reached 'peak food'? Shortages loom as global production rates slow
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures