Friday, November 11, 2011

REVIEW: Shelby Earl - Burn the Boats

Today it is my privilege to review an album notable for all the right reasons, including honest and insightful songwriting and top quality musicianship and production. However, if you are like me, the most notable aspect of the album is the vocals--almost unbelievably clear but redolent of heartache, passion and intriguing depth. Yes, Shelby Earl is one of Seattle's musical treasures, and if the music world is just, Burn the Boats will bring that realization to a wide audience.

A live version of one of the album's better tracks, "At the Start"--

In her early 30s, Shelby Earl worked in jobs in the music industry, including at Seattle's Experience Music Project, for years, but it has taken a while for her to decide to become a professional recording artist. Perhaps the extra time explains her ability to create songs which so well combines youthful hope and adult realism. The result is a remarkably complete debut, devoid of artifice and indifferent to trends. And it is well worth your time.

Album track "Under the Evergreen", live at KEXP's studios:

Burn the Boats was produced (and some vocals contributions) by Seattle indie stalwart, John Roderick, whose band The Long Winters put out some of my favorite Seattle albums in the last decade. it was released November 1 on Rachel Flotard's Seattle-based label, Local 638 Records.

Local 638 Records

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