Review of "Roses Guide To Time Travel" in Rootstime (Belgium)
- "Austere simplicity....warmly recommended"
Rootstime ~ Valsam ~ Belgium
"Just Let Me Dream" was the title of the debut album which Seattle resident and singer-songwriter Nancy K. Dillon released to the world in 2004. She reaped a lot of positive criticism in the professional press but the large commercial success then nevertheless stayed away.
Six years it has been before a follow-up for that first album comes on the market. Now eleven tracks appear on Roses Guide To Time Travel with songs all composed by Nancy herself. Nancy K. Dillon grew up in a very musical family and has had the opportunity to share the stage in the past years with several artists such as Jimmy LaFave, Kevin Welch, Guy Clark and The Everly Brothers. They could make a broader public warm for her own country music and bluegrass inspired folksongs and this second cd can also count on more approval than her debut album.
The songs on this cd find her singing about different subjects. Thus she looks back musing on a pure and unspoiled America from her youth in the nostalgic-sounding "All The Pretty America", her love for everything related to trains in "Last Town On The Line" and "New Train" and bleak weather phenomena such as a severe storm in the bluegrass song "Looks Like Rain".
She also sings about the unconditional love she could see between her parents** in "The Ground She Walks On", her parting feelings on the death of a close friend in the rocker "Good Old Friends" and she brings a musical tribute to the atmospheric city "Portland" in the U.S. state of Oregon. The final song played on acoustic guitar, "Sweet Honey", is due to its austere simplicity one of the best songs on this CD.
Striking on this cd is that the instrumentation on most of the songs has been kept very minimal and as a result the emphasis is moved automatically more towards the lyrics. With her music on this album Nancy K. Dillon can count on recognition of the music lover who melts away in the songs of bands like The Dixie Chicks or The Indigo Girls. We can thus recommend "Roses Guide To Time Travel" to them warmly.
** here is the actual note about "Ground" from the liner notes which accompanied the album....a little something was lost in translation I'm afraid ;-): The Ground She Walks On - This started out to be a sweet love song about my mom and dad’s enduring love for one another and then somehow the brand new adventure of tuning my guitar to dadgad turned it all dark and wrong-headed...I ended up with a murder ballad ghost story on my hands. It is set in the town where they met and fell in love but has nothin’ more than that to do with them...writing Ground was exactly like writing down a dream