Review of Eddi Reader's album 'Love Is The Way'.
Eddi Reader is a Scottish singer songwriter most commonly known for her work with Fair Ground Attraction, and their most famous song 'Perfect' a name that might not mean much to you but if I started to sing, 'Its got to beeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee Perfect, Its got to beeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee worth it yeah' it may mean a little more! Since the 80's Reader has worked hard on her solo career and in 2006 performed and released an album of Robert Burns work which earned her an MBE.
Love is the Way is her latest album and it has the feeling of a hot lazy summer woven throughout it. In the sense of traditional Folk Reader has more of a pop sensibility to her work. There are moments on this album that remind me of the stuff that the Corrs gave us in the 90's and I wasn't ever really a fan. Fallen Twice, is a traditional sounding folk offering and Reader has a voice not dissimilar to that of Andrea. This was something that once I acknowledged actually bugged me a little bit. Which isn't Readers fault, it's a shame Andrea Corr was so annoying. Sweet Mountain of love generates mental images of a group of girls at a sweet 16 wearing full skirts with Polka dots and westies adorning them, drinking coca cola from a glass bottle with a straw, swaying coyly to a straight laced party band in some suburb of America in the 1960's. Very Twee. Then New York City, sounds like Reader has written something for the likes of Delta Goodrem to release. Never going back again is Readers attempt at a simple folk tale, plotting through a little slice of Scottish history. A simple old time piano run, with vocal escalation creates quite a nice sound overall and it stands out on the album as different in approach to the rest of the songs.
Now this may seem like an odd comparison to make, given ones from the tropical Island of Hawaii and the other was born and raised in Scotland but Love is the way has a real feeling of Jack Johnson's In Between Dreams. Songs like Dragonflies the opening track, Love is the Way, Over it now and Roses which is really similar having the same bouncing rhythms Johnson is so fond of. A lot of the tracks on this album retain the same elements Jack Johnson used in his work such as gentle Ukulele strums, shakers and bongos and pleasant major chords with an uplifting Minor.
A lot of the tracks on this album are made for a listener who doesn't want to be challenged or pressured by their music, a listening experience that may allow for the occasional sing along and subject matter that doesn't cause concern for parents. I wouldn't necessarily worry about many young and fashionable teenagers rushing out to listen to this though. Not with the current faux punk revival all the kids are into today. Yet, I can certainly imagine it being an in between ground for the commute to school with the little darlings. I think the release date missed a trick, would have been a well received Mothers day gift, well for mums that wear Laura Ashley and buy their knickers from M&S.