Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genres: Country, Alternative Rock, Pop
Allison Moorer's passionate power earned her first two albums substantial and well-deserved critical acclaim and a loyal fan base. This time, she's shifted away from eclectic neo-traditionalism to more contemporary (i.e. c... more »
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Allison Moorer's passionate power earned her first two albums substantial and well-deserved critical acclaim and a loyal fan base. This time, she's shifted away from eclectic neo-traditionalism to more contemporary (i.e. conventional) Nashville studio arrangements, and the approach is different enough that it may prove disconcerting to some fans of her earlier albums. Still, her original lyrics remain sharp and focused as she explores a wide spectrum of emotions. The magnificent "Steal the Sun" and acerbic "Hey Jezebel" balance the melancholy of "Tumbling Down," the grim cautionary "Dying Breed," and the torchy "No Place for a Heart." While her vocal and compositional integrity remain intact, the question is what this budding paradigm shift portends for her future. Others who emerged as acclaimed neo-traditionalists (Sara Evans comes to mind) failed to significantly broaden their appeal until they firmly embraced the bland, mechanical predictability that still pervades Nashville. If Moorer is aiming for mainstream success by mollifying country radio, it's understandable. Whether that strategy works remains to be seen. --Rich Kienzle
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J. C. Bailey | East Sussex United Kingdom | 09/05/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Allison Moorer may have the most powerful, expressive voice in country music, and she has the song-writing talent to back it up. I gave her last album, "The Hardest Part" an ecstatic 5-star review, and would probably give her debut cut, "Alabama Song", 4.5 stars if the system allowed fractions.Allison has now reached what has been the watershed for good or bad, the make-or-break point in so many recording careers, the famously "difficult" third album. Make no mistake, it's a good album as every fan knew it would be - the lady's talent, discipline and professional commitment always ensured that would be the case. My only real regret is that (quite understandably in view of the critical timing in her career), Allison has played it a little safe this time. As editorial reviews say, it's closer to conventional Nashville, and I haven't yet found anything on here to compare with the desolate beauty of "A Soft Place To Fall" or the awesome spine-tingling intensity of "No Next Time" (my favourite tracks off the first two albums). Also I miss the traditional bluegrass inflections of her earlier work.The good news is that there is not a duff track on the album. Allison's blistering voice is if anything on even better form than before, and the soulfulness that set her apart from the Nashville pack seems even further to the front. And the best news of all is that by broadening her appeal at this critical phase Allison has played a good hand for her long-term career. That promises more great work to come, and all the time in the world to pursue a more personal musical vision in the years ahead."
Falls short compared to her earlier work
Roger D. Launius | 11/14/2002
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I'll agree with some other reviewers here that Allison Moorer is still aeons better than 99.9% of the forgettable pap from Nashville. But this CD just seems to be a little directionless to me; it wanders and meanders but there aren't any standout moments like on her first two albums; no "Soft Place to Fall" etc. that were just stunningly beautiful songs. The sound is definitely more commercial, with some cheesy-sounding strings. Her voice is more restrained; she sounds more like a sleepy torch singer on this one than the passion-bursting virtuoso of her first two albums. I listened to the first two albums over and over for weeks; I listened to this one once, forgot about it for weeks, found it again, and realized I didn't care about it after several more listenings, figuring that the first two albums got better with every listening so this one might too - oh well, no such luck. Your mileage may vary - just listen to some online samples before buying :). Allison Moorer is still an amazing talent, hopefully in the future her music moves back to the twangy, blue-grass-inspired smoky music it used to be."
Great songwriting, great voice
Chris Onions | Wolverhampton | 08/11/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Allison Moorer's previous album The Hardest Part completely bowled me over on first hearing. A wonderful album with good songwriting, some beautiful arrangements and a lot of depth to it, but definitely plumbing the darker side of love. Miss Fortune in many ways carries on where The Hardest Part left off. The songwriting just goes on getting stronger. Listen carefully for instance to the rhyme pattern which works in all three verses of Up This High - clever yet not contrived. The cornerstones of the album are undoubtedly the midtempo ballads which Allison Moorer does so well. The palette is broadened by a greater variety of arrangements, at times reminiscent of the Beatles and also of Glen Campbell at his Jimmy Webb best. And then the range is also broadened to include a handful of more uptempo numbers where RnB influences are beginning to creep in, such as Going Down, modelled on the Stones' Brown Sugar (or even Bowie's Watch That Man). Perhaps no bad thing (such influences haven't done sister Shelby Lynne any harm) but, while they add interest, I'm not entirely sure these numbers work in their own right or fit into the album as a whole. Perhaps just me.Allison Moorer certainly has a gorgeous voice which is warm and expressive and would grace a rendition of Humpty Dumpty let alone songs of the quality of those on Miss Fortune.Overall therefore, despite slight reservations expressed above which may disappear on further listening, for me this album rates five stars."