Karen Lovely – Singing Ten Miles Of Bad Road”
An album full of the blues, deep and dark with the vocals sparkling with the depth of a perfect sapphire. Karen’s vocals throughout Ten Miles Of Bad Road, have a seductive quality drawing you deep into the music and curling around the lyrics. Her tones colour the lyrics with a compendium of moods, sometimes blue and brooding, then teasing and other times with hints of joy; Karen’s voice is the centerpiece of the whole album. The instrumentation builds and flows away as the perfect foil for the emotion Karen is portraying the result is an album that like any road has a range of surfaces and takes you on a journey filled with mystery of experiences that leaves you feeling emotionally engaged.
The opening track Low Road with a blues signature opening of searing guitar from Alan Mirikitani, his understanding of the movement within the music is understandable as he co-wrote the number. Added to the mood are d Jim Pugh’s keys setting the mood and then the voice that you just sit and enjoy understanding the vocals that curl around the keys. The mood changes on Ten Miles Of Bad Road, with tracks that vary the tempo, mood and colouring of the blues. Wow what an intro to Cross The Water, this is a song that flows with a deep beauty that shimmers as you are drenched in the attention Karen pours into the lyrics. Upbeat and sassy You Stole My Heart; with the line “It’s my car I want back”; no mournfulness here this isn’t self-pitying it is about moving on; the tempo set by the drums of Tony Braunagel and the backing vocals adds another layer of sound. Save Me is deep in the blues with a beat that cajoles you and swirls around and sets shiver up your blues backbone, tempo changes again with a boisterousness full of intense energy as Frank the Spank closes the album with a high-octane hit of joy. Johnny Lee’s guitar once again adds a stunning guitar tone to this and Blue Valentine and Better Place is augmented by his talented guitar.
Ten Miles of Bad Road, is thirteen carefully selected numbers the majority written/co-written by Karen and her perspective of contemporary blues shines through with the link between narrative and melody the capturing of fleeting emotions. The session musicians bring a tonal depth and they punctuate the feel but never drown out each other or Karen it is about perfect phrasing of the notes. Ten Miles of Bad Road is blues you what to hear again and again and with every airing another nuanced lyric will hit home as they reflect your mood. A massive thanks to every fan of Karen Lovely who made this musical journey possible through their generous donations now we can all hear Ten Miles of Bad Road whenever and as often as we like!
Bluesdoodles gives this CD TEN doodle paws out of TEN ….
1. Low Road (A Mirikitani, D Walker)
2. Company Graveyard ((A Mirikitani)
3. A Better Place (K. Lovely; M den. Haring)
4. Ignorance (It Ain’t Bliss) (V. Dodson, D Fleschner, K. Lovely)
5. Cross the Water (A Mirikitani, D Walker)
6. Ten Miles of Bad Road (K. Lovely, D Fleschner, C Salgado)
7. I Want to Love You (D Fleschner)
8. You Stole My Heart (V. Dodson, D Fleschner, K. Lovely)
9. Always Love You (K. Lovely)
10. Blues Valentine (K. Lovely)
11. Save Me (K. Lovely, D Fleschner)
12. I’m Over Goodbye (K. Lovely, D Fleschner)
13. Frank The Spank (K. Lovely, D Fleschner)