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Smiling EP –  Brei Carter (reviewed by Dave Franklin)

If the eponymous single alerted us to Brei Carter’s ability to not only write songs in a very deft fashion but to delivery them with charm and confidence, the EP which has followed proves that this wasn’t just a lucky break. All too often artists pour everything that they have into one breakthrough song and struggle to capture the audience’s attention with what follows. Not so in this case.

Country Choir is a similarly cleverly wrought song, driven by a wonderful background stomp and dressed up with happy, gospel inspired harmonies, perfectly placed riffs and musical motifs which thread through the spaces which were left just so that they would have enough room to be totally effective, and an infectiousness which is hard to shake off.

Yours rounds this three-shot salvo off, a much more delicate affair, tripping with emotion, balladic but again shimmering with musical magic and instrumental innovation. Smiling was a great single and the full e.p. is a wonderful collection of music peppered with great arrangements and smart sonic choices. And if she can cover this much ground with three songs, imagine how great a full album would be. Hopefully we won’t have to wait too long to find out.

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