Humming by the Flowered Vine

Humming by the Flowered Vine

by Laura Cantrell
     
 

Laura Cantrell's first two albums demonstrated her skill and knowledge of old-time country and folk music, nodding toward Kitty Wells, Don Gibson, and the Carter Family. On Humming by the Flowered Vine, Cantrell steps away slightly from the twangy, finger-pickin' side of country and eases toward a rootsy pop vibe. Not that she's forsaken the honky-tonks:See more details below

Overview

Laura Cantrell's first two albums demonstrated her skill and knowledge of old-time country and folk music, nodding toward Kitty Wells, Don Gibson, and the Carter Family. On Humming by the Flowered Vine, Cantrell steps away slightly from the twangy, finger-pickin' side of country and eases toward a rootsy pop vibe. Not that she's forsaken the honky-tonks: the toe-tapping "California Rose" and the pedal steel–drenched "Wishful Thinking" showcase Cantrell's clear, guileless soprano, and her cover of the traditional "Poor Ellen Smith" is a mandolin- and fiddle-fueled joy. The album opens with the rolling "14th Street," a comely love song written by Emily Spray that builds to include swooning background vocals and reverberating electric guitars; it's an easygoing, layered pop tune, and a highlight. Lucinda Williams's "Letters" contrasts swampy guitars with Cantrell's pure voice; it's a dark, earthy arrangement, and Cantrell sings with a wistful desperation. Cantrell hosts an acclaimed radio show (Radio Thrift Shop on WFMU), and she's adept at unearthing songs to cover --Humming also includes songs from Dave Schramm, Jenifer Jackson, and Wynn Stewart -- but she's an excellent songwriter herself, and "Bees" and "Khaki & Corduroy" are two of her best ballads. No surprise, then, that with its varied arrangements and Cantrell's consistently tender vocals, Humming by the Flowered Vine is her best album yet.

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Mark Deming
Laura Cantrell knows and loves good music too well to be a purist, and while her first two albums, Not the Tremblin' Kind and When the Roses Bloom Again, were firmly grounded in her great fondness for country music, she expands her boundaries a bit on her third set (and first for Matador), Humming by the Flowered Vine. While the feel of Humming by the Flowered Vine isn't radically different than her previous work, the sound and arrangements offer some new wrinkles, with producer J.D. Foster and a superb cast of musicians edging Cantrell into an inventive pop direction. The pensive love song "14th Street," a strong but sorrowful reading of "And Still," and the rare Lucinda Williams composition "Letters" all speak of a riskier musical mindset than Cantrell has allowed herself in the past, and the results are beautifully expressive and gracefully executed while quietly bearing a considerable musical weight. Fans of Cantrell's more traditionally oriented work need not fret, as her lovely covers of "Wishful Thinking" and "Poor Ellen Smith" confirm she still has a superb command of classic country styles, and her voice has lost none of its lovely clarity while revealing an even greater emotional force on these sessions. And while Cantrell is a marvelous interpretive songwriter with nearly faultless taste, her originals rank with the album's finest material; "Khaki & Corduroy," "Old Downtown," and "Bees" are all crafted with the wisdom and care of a fine short story. Humming by the Flowered Vine is an album that's a joy to listen to without sounding simple or hollow, and resonates with an evocative beauty comprised of both compassion and intellect; this music easily raises the bar for this gifted artist.
Entertainment Weekly - Yancey Strickler
With a voice reminiscent of Alison Krauss and melodies much the same, [Cantrell] was born for this stuff. (A-)

Product Details

Release Date:
06/21/2005
Label:
Matador Records
UPC:
0744861065128
catalogNumber:
10651

Tracks

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

Laura Cantrell   Primary Artist,Guitar,Vocals
Joey Burns   Electric Bass
Kenny Kosek   Violin
Steve Goulding   Drums
Dennis McDermott   Drums
Dave Schramm   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar,E-bow
Andy Taub   Wurlitzer
John Convertino   Drums
Mark Spencer   Acoustic Guitar,Piano,Electric Guitar,Vocals
Jon Graboff   Acoustic Guitar,Mandolin,Pedal Steel Guitar,Guitar (Nylon String)
Mary Lee Kortes   Vocals
Paul Niehaus   Pedal Steel Guitar
Rob Burger   Piano,Accordion,Hammond Organ,Mellotron,Marxophone,Claviola
Ted Reichman   Piano
Amy Helm   Vocals
Fiona McBain   Vocals
Jeremy Chatzky   Electric Bass,Acoustic Bass
Michael Evans   Percussion
Patrick Matera   Electric Guitar,Guitar (12 String Electric)

Technical Credits

Lucinda Williams   Composer
Greg Calbi   Mastering
Laura Cantrell   Composer
J.D. Foster   Audio Production
Dave Schramm   Composer
Jay Sherman-Godfrey   Composer
Wynn Stewart   Composer
Andy Taub   Engineer
Traditional   Composer
Jenifer Jackson   Composer
Emily Spray   Composer

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