A review for the Folk & Acoustic Music Exchange
by Steve Jerrett- KOPN's Sunday Morning Coffeehouse
From the opening mandolin bars of Walking On Ledges you know you're in for a treat. This is the second release for the duo of Stan Moeller and T.S. Baker and demonstrates their ability to blend two strong talents. The entire CD is chock full of well-crafted harmonies, skillful arrangements, and masterful songwriting.
This gifted acoustic duo explores a wide range of styles, slipping easily from folk-based relationship songs (exemplified by the catchy opening cut, "In My Dreams") and story songs ("Circus Song" with its carnival instrumental atmosphere) to swing ("Sweet Kinda' Loving") and jazz ("Backed To The Wall" with its 3am jazz club feel); all seemingly effortlessly. Each song is a microcosm of words that sometimes soothe; sometimes hit home; always satisfy.
T.S. has an amazing ear for arranging, adding just enough to those songs to sweeten, yet never detracting from the piece. In addition to her multi-instrumental talents which embellish Stan's solid guitar work, numerous luminaries grace the album. Guitar wizard Edward Gerhard adds just the right spice with some tasty acoustic slide guitar. Suzie Burke and David Surette round out the lengthy list of musicians contributing their gifts to this work with harmonies in just the right places. Each musician seems t o be chosen with care. They seem to respect what each song is communicating and complement the stylistic dialect used, from Cesar Villalobos on pan flutes to Taylor Haskins on jazz trumpet.
Walking On Ledges is a well-crafted work of art that you will savor for a long time. Not unlike a good novel, another subtle nuance will tap you on the shoulder each time you listen. The CD on GoFigure (CD00990) may be ordered through Elderly Music if you don't spot it in your local store, or by contacting Harry Melodies Music (email: firstname.lastname@example.org or snail mail: P.O. Box 6515 in Portsmouth, NH 03802-6515).