Reviewed by Harry Kaplan
One of the more unique outfits I have heard in a fortnight. This is a heavenly combination of jazz, rock, alternative, blues, and country. Let’s not forget country. Twisted Pine is deeply rooted (pun intended) in country.
There are many moments throughout this collection where Twisted Pine stray a bit, but the fiddle and mandolin rein the herd back in. In addition to jazz, Twisted Pine also does a little scat on I Miss Talking (Track 3) that is reminiscent of Ella Fitzgerald.
Twisted Pine hail from up in New England – Massachusetts. Their singing and playing is not indicative of a Massachusetts address, more like Tennessee. I need to throw all stereotypes out the window because it doesn’t (and shouldn’t) matter where these ladies and gents are from.
Speaking of ladies and gents, let’s introduce the band, shall we? There is Dan Bui on mandolin, Kathleen Parks on fiddle and vocals, Chris Sartori on bass, and Rachel Sumner on guitar and vocals. These four mesh so well their web is air tight.
The most striking song on this album is Bank Man Blues (Track 9). The vocals on this track are truly out of this world, somewhere in deep space. The vocal combo of Parks and Sumner is truly amazing. My vocabulary will not do this this song its justice, A listen is a requirement.
21 And Rising (Track 7) is another good example of the stellar vocals. Incredible range and tone by both Parks and Sumner. They are both a joy to listen to. They are very soothing on the ears.
Twisted Pine will make you rethink what country music is. They do a good job of rule bending and envelope pushing. The good part is that it is natural and not the least bit contrived. These guys definitely have the raw talent to make it big and this album is the first rung of the ladder.