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American Songwriter describes Eilen Jewell as, “one of America’s most intriguing, creative and idiosyncratic voices.” The Boise, Idaho songwriter is one of a kind.
That singular voice springs forth from a woman of more than one mind, and she taps into many of them on Gypsy (August, 2019 Signature Sounds Recordings). By turns personal and political, pissed off and blissed out, Jewell’s first album of original material since 2015 expands brief moments of joy into lifetimes, and distills epic sentiments and persistent doubts into succinct songs.
Jewell seamlessly blends heavy electric guitars and dirty fiddles on the rollicking country rocker “Crawl” with the sweet and understated horn section of the tender “Witness. “79 Cents (The Meow Song)” skewers sexism and discrimination with pointed humor over a circus bed of musical saw and horns.
Longtime fans who love Eilen Jewell in classic country mode will delight in the pedal steel driven “These Blues” and the sole cover on Gypsy, “You Cared Enough To Lie,” written by fellow Idahoan and country legend Pinto Bennett.
Rather than pulling artist and listener this way and that, the tensions within and between these twelve tracks propel Eilen Jewell’s eighth studio album forward as a remarkably cohesive full-length.