Grenadine & Kerosene – Carolyn Shulman (reviewed by Dave Franklin)

The opening song of any album generally does one of two things. It either sets the tone for what is to follow, a sonic calling card and mission statement all wrapped into one. Or it goes completely the other way and offers something so odd and beguiling that you keep listening anyway. Here, with the title track kicking off this gorgeous debut album, Carolyn Shulman opts for the former and its confident and comforting lyrics coupled with some deftly woven folk-infused sonics makes for a great first step.

Although folk is certainly the platform upon which the album is built, there is room for more upbeat, countrified rock with Matter of Time, soft folk meets a slightly Tex-Mex vibe on the understated yet poignant Across the Borderline and even some jaunty old-time downhome bluegrass bop with I Don’t Miss You.

And if I had to pick one stand out track, from an album littered with stand out tracks it has to be the easy and seductive sound of Double Stars; sweet, sentimental and soothing.

A fantastic album, full of great songs and what a voice. Carolyn Shulman could read me the specials board in the local diner and I’d still pay for the privilege of hearing her do so.

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