Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genres: Folk, Pop
Between the time he was lead guitarist in John Gorka's college band and the time he launched his own singer-songwriter career, Richard Shindell attended the Union Theological Seminary. The experience didn't turn him into a... more »
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Between the time he was lead guitarist in John Gorka's college band and the time he launched his own singer-songwriter career, Richard Shindell attended the Union Theological Seminary. The experience didn't turn him into a preachy true believer but gave him an abiding interest in spiritual matters--an interest that informs his fine album, Reunion Hill. The lead-off track, "The Next Best Western," for example, finds him driving late at night on a Midwestern interstate, wishing he could believe in something as passionately as the fire-breathing preacher on the late-night gospel station seems to. Bolstered by a James Taylor-like melody, the chorus turns into a prayer, "Lord, deliver me, deliver me to the next Best Western." The same skeptical but irrepressible fascination with things spiritual informs most of the other songs as well. When he sings of life "Beyond the Iron Gate," the images are flexible: describing both a literal fence around a country house and a metaphorical fence around a shy, self-doubting man. On "I Saw My Youth Today," an imagined meeting between the singer and his teenage self becomes a real encounter between a raving, middle-aged man and a frightened stranger on the sidewalk. Shindell, who wrote a strong Civil War song on his last release, comes up with another for the title track of this album. The story of "Reunion Hill" is told by a farmwife who remembers all the soldiers who "limped across this field of mine," yet none of them were the husband she had sent off to war. Producer-guitarist Larry Campbell frames all these numbers with sympathetic folk-rock arrangements. --Geoffrey Himes
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Good. But not great.
Tom Huot | Irwin, PA | 01/21/2000
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I know many of Richard Shindell's fans think the world of this recording, but it just has never quite hit the bulls eye like Sparrows Point and Blue Divide did. The song, The Next Best Western is probably my favorite song on the album. I would probably recommend this album, but it should be the third one of his to pick up. The first should be Sparrow's Point followed closely behind by Blue Divide."
Richard Shindell ROCKS
Annie | Ogden, UT USA | 05/27/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I liked his first two CDS, but I absolutely LOVE "Reunion Hill." Richard sings with such passion, and his songs are so sincere. He amazes me because he can write from so many different perspectives, from a fugitive in "May," to a woman who lost her husband in a war in "Reunion Hill." "I saw my youth today" makes me cry every time I hear it...he is amazing. I would definitely recommend this CD to anyone who enjoys folk music."
This Storyteller Can Sing
frogleggs | IN | 04/20/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This one has become one of those CD's that I must return to every few months. The stories and the way Richard delivers them are compelling. There are only a few tracks that aren't on my favorite list. "Darkness, Darkness" is well done, but Jesse Colin Young (or even Mott the Hoople!) had this one nailed long ago. Richard is best when dealing with characters of his own making. I have listened to little of Richard beyond this CD, so I can't compare it to his other work. However, I believe it stands on it's own as a very fine record, indeed. Larry Campbell's work here is especially appreciated."